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Some marry firft, and then they fall to fcow'ring,
Which is, refining marriage into whoring.
Our women batten well on their good-nature;
All they can rap and rend for the dear creature.
But while abroad fo liberal the dolt is,
Poor spouse at home as ragged as a colt is.
Laft, fome there are, who take their first degrees
Of lewdness in our middle galleries.
The doughty bullies enter bloody drunk,
Invade and grubble one another's punk:
They caterwaul, and make a difmal rout,
Call fons of whores, and strike, but ne'er lug out:
Thus while for paltry punk they roar and stickle,
They make it bawdier than a conventicle.
Upon the UNION of the Two Companies in 1686.
INCE faction ebbs, and rogues grow out of fashion,
How well men thrive in this or that plantation :
How Penfylvania's air agrees with Quakers,
And Carolina's with Affociators:
Both e'en too good for madmen and for traitors.
I The wanton change of the publick tafte, after the introducing operas at the Duke's theatre, began to fall as heavy upon the King's company, as their excellence in acting had before fallen on their competitors. Mr. Betterton who had a fhare in the management of the former, finding their expenfive ftruggles hurt both theatres, projected an union of the two companies; in this project he fucceeded, and from this union, Cibber fays, fprung the best company of actors that ever appear'd upon the English ftage.
Truth is, our land with faints is fo run o'er,
And every age produces fuch a ftore,
That now there's need of two New-Englands more.
What's this, you'll fay, to us and our vocation?
Only thus much, that we have left our ftation,
And made this theatre our new plantation.
The factious natives never could agree;
But aiming, as they call'd it, to be free,
Those play-house Whigs fet up for property.
Some fay, they no obedience paid of late;
But would new fears and jealoufies create;
Till topfy-turvy they had turn'd the state.
Plain fenfe, without the talent of foretelling,
Might guefs 'twould end in downright knocks and
For feldom comes there better of rebelling.
When men will, needlefly, their freedom barter
For lawless power, fometimes they catch a Tartar;
There's a damn'd word that rhimes to this, call'd Charter.
But, fince the victory with us remains,
You fhall be call'd to twelve in all our gains;
If you'll not think us faucy for our pains.
Old men fhall have good old plays to delight them : And you, fair ladies and gallants that flight them, We'll treat with good new plays; if our new wits can
We'll take no blund'ring verfe, no fuftian tumor,
No dribling love, from this or that prefumer;
No dull fat fool fhamm'd on the ftage for humour.
For, faith, fome of them fuch vile stuff have made As none but fools or fairies ever play'd;
But 'twas, as fhopmen fay, to force à trade.
We've given you Tragedies, all fenfe defying, .
And finging men, in woful metre dying;
This 'tis when heavy lubbers will be flying.
All these difafters we well hope to weather;
We bring you none of our old lumber hither:
Whig poets and Whig theriffs may hang together.
EW minifters, when firft they get in place,
N Muft have a care to pleafe; and that's our cafe
Some laws for public welfare we defign,
If you, the power fopreme, will please to join:
There are a fort of prattlers in the pit,
Who either have, or who pretend to wit:
These noify firs fo loud their parts rehearse,
That oft the play is filenc'd by the farce.
Let fuch be dumb, this penalty to fhun,
Each to be thought my lady's eldest fon.
But ftay: methinks fome vizard mask I fee,
Caft out her lure from the mid gallery:
About her all the flutt'ring sparks are rang'd;
The noife continues tho' the fcene is chang'd:
Now growling, fputt'ring, wauling, fuch a clutter,
'Tis juft like pufs defendant in a gutter:
Fine love no doubt; but ere two days are o'er ye,
The furgeon will be told a woful story.
Let vizard mask her naked face expose,
On pain of being thought to want a nofe:
Then for your lacqueys, and your train befide,
By whate'er name or title dignify'd,
They roar fo loud, you'd think behind the flairs
Tom Dove, and all the brotherhood of bears:
They're grown a nuifance, beyond all difafters ;
We've none fo great but their unpaying masters.
We beg you, firs, to beg your men, that they
Would please to give you leave to hear the play.
Next in the play-house spare your precious lives;
Think, like good chriftians, on your bearns and wives:
Think on your fouls; but by your lugging forth,
It seems you know how little they are worth.
If none of these will move the warlike mind,
Think on the helpless whore you leave behind.
We beg you, laft, our fcene-room to forbear,
And leave our goods and chattels to our care.
Alas! our women are but washy toys,
And wholly taken up in ftage employs :
Poor willing tits they are: but yet I doubt
This double duty foon will wear them out.
Then you are watch'd befides with jealous care;
What if my lady's page should find you there?
My lady knows t'a tittle what there's in ye;
No paffing your gilt fhilling for a guinea.
Thus, gentlemen, we have fumm'd up in short
Our grievances, from country, town, and court:
Which humbly we fubmit to your good pleasure;
But firft vote money, then redress at leifure.
To the PRINCESS of CLEVES.
ADIES! (I hope there's none behind to hear)
I long to whifper fomething in your ear:
A fecret, which does much my mind perplex:
There's treafon in the play against our sex.
A man that's falfe to love, that vows and cheats,
And kiffes every living thing he meets.
A rogue in mode, I dare not speak too broad,
One that does fomething to the very bawd.
Out on him, traytor, for a filthy beast;
Nay, and he's like the pack of all the reft:
None of them stick at mark; they all deceive.
Some Jew has chang'd the text, I half believe;
There Adam cozen'd our poor grandame Eve.
To hide their faults they rap out oaths, and tear:
Now, tho' we lye, we're too well-bred to fwear.
So we compound for half the fin we owe,
But men are dipt for foul and body too;
And, when found out, excufe themselves, pox cant them,
With Latin ftuff, Perjuria ridet Amantûm.
I'm not book-learn'd, to know that word in vogue,
But I fufpect 'tis Latin for a rogue.
I'm fure, I never heard that fcritch-owl hollow'd
In my poor ears, but feparation follow'd.
How can fuch perjur'd villains e'er be faved?
Achitophel's not half fo falfe to David.
With vows and foft expreffions to allure,
They ftand, like foremen of a fhop, demure: