Nay, Mr Tattle, if you make love to me, you spoil my design,
for I intend to make you my confidant.
But, madam, to throw away your person--such a person!--and
such a fortune on a madman!
I never loved him till he was mad; but don't tell anybody so.
How's this! Tattle making love to Angelica!
Tell, madam? Alas, you don't know me. I have much ado to
tell your ladyship how long I have been in love with you--but
encouraged by the impossibility of Valentine's making any more
addresses to you, I have ventured to declare the very inmost passion
of my heart. O madam, look upon us both. There you see the ruins
of a poor decayed creature--here, a complete and lively figure, with
youth and health, and all his five senses in perfection, madam, and
to all this, the most passionate lover -
O fie, for shame, hold your tongue. A passionate lover, and
five senses in perfection! When you are as mad as Valentine, I'll
believe you love me, and the maddest shall take me.
O Lord, her coming will spoil all. [To JEREMY.]
No, no, madam, he won't know her; if he should, I can
Scandal, who are these? Foreigners? If they are, I'll tell
you what I think,--get away all the company but Angelica, that I may
discover my design to her. [Whisper.]
I will--I have discovered something of Tattle that is of a
piece with Mrs Frail. He courts Angelica; if we could contrive to
couple 'em together.--Hark'ee--[Whisper.]
He won't know you, cousin; he knows nobody.
But he knows more than anybody. O niece, he knows things
past and to come, and all the profound secrets of time.
Look you, Mr Foresight, it is not my way to make many words
of matters, and so I shan't say much,--but in short, d'ye see, I
will hold you a hundred pounds now, that I know more secrets than
How! I cannot read that knowledge in your face, Mr Tattle.
Pray, what do you know?
Why, d'ye think I'll tell you, sir? Read it in my face? No,
sir, 'tis written in my heart; and safer there, sir, than letters
writ in juice of lemon, for no fire can fetch it out. I am no blab,
Acquaint Jeremy with it, he may easily bring it about. They
are welcome, and I'll tell 'em so myself. [To SCANDAL.] What, do
you look strange upon me? Then I must be plain. [Coming up to
them.] I am Truth, and hate an old acquaintance with a new face.
[SCANDAL goes aside with JEREMY.]
You're a woman. One to whom heav'n gave beauty, when it
grafted roses on a briar. You are the reflection of heav'n in a
pond, and he that leaps at you is sunk. You are all white, a sheet
of lovely, spotless paper, when you first are born; but you are to
be scrawled and blotted by every goose's quill. I know you; for I
loved a woman, and loved her so long, that I found out a strange
thing: I found out what a woman was good for.
I tell thee, Charmion, could I time retrieve,
And could again begin to love and live,
To you I should my earliest off'ring give;
I know my eyes would lead my heart to you,
And I should all my vows and oaths renew,
But to be plain, I never would be true.
For by our weak and weary truth, I find,
Love hates to centre in a point assign'd?
But runs with joy the circle of the mind.
Then never let us chain what should be free,
But for relief of either sex agree,
Since women love to change, and so do we.