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An Apartment in Don Scipio's Castle.
Enter VICTORIA and CATILINA.
Catil. Nay, dear madam, do not submit to go into the nunnery.
Vict: Yes, Catilina, my father desires I shall take the veil, and a parent's voice is the call of Heaven!
Catil. Heaven! Well, though the fellows swear I'm an angel, this world is good enough for me Dear ma'am, I wish I could but once see you in love.
Vict. Heigho! Catilina, I wonder what sort of gentleman this Don Fernando is, who is contracted to me, and hourly expected at the castle.
Catil. A beautiful man, I warrant. But, ma'am, you're not to have him. Hush ! Dame Isabel, not content with making your father, by slights and ill usage,
force your brother, poor Don Cæsar, to run about the world, in the Lord knows what wild courses, but she now has persuaded the old gentleman to pass her daughter on Don Fernando, for you-There, yonder she is, flaunting, so be-jewelled, and be-plumed—Well, if I was you, they might take my birthright—but my husband
take my man—the deuce shall take them first! Ah, no! if I ever do go to heaven, I'll have a smart lad in my company: Send you to a nunnery!
Vict. Was my fond mother alive!_Catilina, my father will certainly marry this Dame Isabel ; I'm now an alien to his affections, bereft of every joy and every hope, I shall quit the world without a sigh.
Yet peace from my sonnet may spring,
For peace let me fly the gay throng,
Catil. I quit this castle as soon as ever Donna Victoria enters a nunnery-Shall I go with her? No, I was never made for a nun- Aye, I'll back to the vineyard, and if my sweetheart, Philippo, is as fond as ever, who knows I was his queen of all the girls, though the charming youth was the guitar, flute, fiddle, and hautboy of our village.
Like my dear swain, no youth you'd see
To foot it up so featly in
Te kiss 'em round so sweetly.
While round him in the jocund ring,
He caught our ears so neatly.
To kiss us round so sweetly. (Exit.
Enter VASQUEZ, introducing SPADO. Vas. I'll inform Dame Isabel, sir-please to wait a moment.
[Exit VASQUEZ Spado. Sir!—This Dame Isabel is, it seems, a widow-gentlewoman, whom Don Scipio has retained ever since the death of his lady, as supreme directress over his family, has such an ascendency, prevailed on him even to drive his own son out of his house, and, ha! ha! ha! is now drawing the old don into a matrimonial noose, ha! ha! ha! Egad, I am told, rules the roast here in the castle-Yes, yes, she's my mark Hem! Now for my story, but my
scheme is up, if I tell here a single truth-Ah, no fear of that. this way
she moves Enter DAME ISABEL and VASQUEZ. Isab. Don Scipio not returned ! a foolish old man, rambling about at this time of night! Stay, Vasquez, where's this strange, ugly little fellow you said wants ed to speak with me?
Vas. [Confused.] Madam, I did not say
[Exit VASQUEZ Isab. Well, sir, pray who are you?
Spado. [Bowing obsequiously.] Madam, I have the honour to be confidential servant and secretary to Don Juan, father to Don Fernando de Zelva.
Isab. Don Fernando! Heavens! is he arrived ? Here, Vasquez, Lopez, Diego!
(Calling: Spado: Hold, madam! he's not arrived; most sagacious lady, please to lend your attention for a few moments, to an affair of the highest importance to Don Scipio's family: My young master is coming Isal. Well, sir ! Spado. Incog. Isab. Incog!
Spado. Madam, you shall hear-[Aside.]-Now for a lie worth twenty pistoles—The morning before his departure, Don Fernando calls me into his closet, and shutting the door, “Spado," says he, "you know this obstinate father of mine has engaged me to marry a lady I have never seen, and to-morrow, by his order, I set out for Don Scipio, her father's castle, for that purpose; but,” says he, striking his breast with one hand, twisting his mustaches with the other, and turning up
." if, when I see her, she don't hit my fancy, I'll not marry her, by the"I sha'n't mention his oath before
madam. Isab. No, pray don't, sir.
Spado. “ Therefore,” says he, “ I design to dress Pedrillo, my arch dog of a valet, in a suit of my clothes, and he shall personate me at Don Scipio's castle, while I, in a livery, pass for him-If I like the lady, I resume my own character, and take her hand; if not, the deceit continues, and Pedrillo weds Donna Victoria, just to warn parental tyranny how it dares to clap up marriage, without consulting our inclinations."
Isab. Here's a discovery! so then, it's my poor child that must have fallen into this snare-[Aside.? Well, good sir.
Spado. “ And, (continued he) Spado, I appoint you my trusty spy in this Don Scipio's family; to cover our designs, let it be a secret that
belong to me, and I sha’n't seem even to know you—You'll easily get a footing in the family, (says he.) by imposing some lie or other upon a foolish woman, I'm told, is in the castle, Dame Isabel I think they call her.”
Isab. He shall find I am not so easily imposed upon.
Spado. I said so, madam; says I, a lady of Dame Isabel's wisdom must soon find me out, was I to tell her a lie. Isab. Ay, that I should, sir.
Enter VASQUEZ. Vas. Oh, madam! my master is returned, and Don Fernando de Zelva with him. [Exit VASQUEZ.
Isab. Don Fernando! Oh, then, this is the rascally valet, but I'll give him welcome with a vengeance!
Spado. Hold, madam! Suppose, for a little sport, you seem to humour the deceit, only to see how the fellow acts his part? he'll play the gentleman very well, I'll warrant ; the dog is an excellent mimic, for, you must know, ma'am, this Pedrillo's mother was a gipsy, his father a merry Andrew to a mountebank, and he himself five years trumpeter to a company of strolling players.
Isab. So, I was likely to have a hopeful son-in-law! Good sir, we are eternally indebted to you for this timely notice of the imposition.
Spado. Madam, I've done the common duties of an honest man; I have been long in the family, and can't see my master making such a fool of himself, without endeavouring to prevent any mischance in consequence.
Isab. Dear sir, I beseech you be at home under this roof; pray be free, and want for nothing the house affords.