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$93. Epilogue to the Runaway. 1776. There lives the poet's praise !--no critic art
GARRICK. Can match the comment of a feeling heart! Post-haste from Italy arrives my lover!
When gen'ral plaudits speak the fable o’er, Shall I to you, good friends, my fears discover? Which mute attention had approv'd before, Should foreign modes his virtues mar and Tho' ruder spirits love th' accustom'd jest inangle,
Which chases sorrow from the vulgar breast, And caro sposo prove-Sir Dingle Dangle;
Still hearts refin'd their sadden'd tints retainNo sooner join'd than separate we go ;
The sigh is pleasure ! and the jest is pain! Abroad-we never shall each other know,
Scarce have they smiles to honor grace or wit, At home I mope above-he 'll pick his teeth Tho' Roscius spoke the verse himself had writ! below.
Thus through the time when vernal fruits receive In sweet domestic chat we ne'er shall mingle, The grateful show'rs that hang on April's eve; And wedded tho' I am, shall still live single.
every coarser stem of forest birth [earth, However modish, I detest this plan;
Throws with the morning-beam its dews to For me no mawkish creature, weak and wan; But bath'd in nature's tears, it droops till noon.
Ne'er does the gentle rose revive so soonHe must be English-mard an English man. To nature and his country false and blind,
O could the muse one simple moral teach, Should Belville dare to twist his form and mind, From scenes like these, which all who heard I will discard him-and, to Britain true,
might reach! A Briton choose and may be one of you
Thou child of sympathy-whoe'er thou art, Nay, don't be frighten'd; I am but in jest ;,
Who with Assyria's queen has wept thy partFreemen, in love or war, should ne'er be press'd. Go search where keeper woes demand relief, If you would know my utmost expectation,
Go-while thy heart yet beats with fancied 'Tis one unspoil'd by travellid education;
grief: With knowledge, taste, much kindness, and Thy lip still conscious of the recent sigh, some whim,
fhim. The graceful tear still lingering in thy ere Good sense to govern me and let me govern The blest effusion of fictitious woe!
Go-and on real misery bestow
So shall our Muse, supreme of all the Nine, If in these times I should be bless'd by fate
Deserve indeed the title of-divine ! With such a phenix, such a matchless mate,
Virtue shall own her favor'd from above, I will by kindness, and some small discerning, And Pity greet her with a sister's love! Takecare that Hymen's torch continues burning. At weddings, now-a-days, the torch thrown down,
[town! $95. Prologue spoken by Mr. PALMER, on Just makes a smoke, then stinks throughout the
the opening of the Theatre Royal in the No married Puritan, I'll follow pleasure, Hay-Market, May 15, 1777. COLMAN. And even the fashion--but in moderate mea. I will of opera ecstasies partake,
Pride, by a thousand arts, vain honors claims, Though I take snuff to keep myself awake:
And gives to empty nothings pom pous naines. No rampant plumes shall o'er my temples play, And ev'ry playhouse grows a mighty state.
Theatric dealers thus would fain seem great, Foretelling that my brains will Hy away; Nor from my head shall strange vagaries spring, A manager's a trader-nothing more
Tofancied heights howe'er mock monarchs soar, To show the soil can teem with ev'ry thing; No fruits, roots, greens, shall fill the ample
You (whom they court) their customers and A kitchen-garden to adorn my face! [space,
then, No rocks shall there be seen, no windmill
, We play'rs--poor devils—aretheir journeymen. fountain;
mountain While two great warehouses, for winter use, Nor curls, like guns set round to guard the Eight months huge bales of merchandise proO learn, ye fair, if this same madness spreads,
Out with the swallow comes our summer Bayes, Not to hold up, but to keep down your heads ! Be not misled by strange fantastic Art,
To show his taffeta and lutestring plays ; But in your dress let Nature take some part:
A choice assortment of slight goods prepares
, Her skill alone a lasting pow'r insures,
The smallest haberdasher of small wares. And best can ornament such charms as yours. A mighty schemer-like our new directoras
In Laputa, we're told, a grave projector
Once form'd a plan-and 'twas a deep one, $94. Epilogue to Semiramis. 1776.
SHERIDAN. To draw the sun-beams out of cucumbers. DisheveLL'd still, like Asia's bleeding So whilst less vent'rous managers retire, queen,
Our Salamander thinks to live in fire. Shall I with jests deride the tragic scene? A playhouse quidnunc-and no quidnunc's No, beauteous mourners !—from whose down
wiser cast eyes
Reading our play-vills in the Advertiser, The Muse has drawn her noblest sacrifice ! Cries, "Hey! what's here! In th' Hay-market Whose gentle bosoms, Pity's ultarsbear
a play, The crystal incense of each falling tear! To sweat the public in the midst of May?
“Give me fresh air!"-then goes and pouts alone 'T had a great run abroad, which always yields In country lodgingsamby the two-mile stone: Work for our Grub-street, and our Spital-fields. There sits, and chews the cud of his disgust, France charms our ladies, naked bards, and Broild in the sun, and blinded by the dust.
beaux, “Dearee,” says Mrs. Inkle," let us go Who smuggle thence their learning and their “Toth Hay-market to-night and see the show."
clothes; “ Psha, womnan!" cries old Inkle, “you're a Buckles like gridirons, and wigs on springs; fool :
Tétes built like towers, and ruinps like ostrich “We'll walk to Hornsey, and enjoy the cool.” wings. So said, to finish the domestic strife,
If this piece please, each summer I'll go over, Forth waddle the fat spouse, and fatter wife : And fetch new patterns by the straits of Dover. And as they tug up Highgate-hill together, He cries Delightful walking !--charming
weather !" Now with the napkin underneath the chin, $97. Prologue to the School for Scandal. 1777. Unbutton'd cits their turtle-feasts begin,
GARRICK. And plunge full knuckle-deep, through thick A SCHOOL for scandal !-Tell me, I beseech and thin:
(jelly, you, Throw down fish, Aesh, fowl, pastry, custard, Needs there a school this modish art to teach you? And make a salmagundy of their belly. No need of lessons now-the knowing think “More China-pepper ! punch, another rummer! We might as well be taught to eat and drink. “So cool and pleasant-eating in the summer!" Caus'd by a dearth of scandal, should the vapors
To ancient geographers it was not known Distress our fair-ones, let them read the papers; Mortals could live beneath the torrid zone: Their pow'rful mixtures such disorders hii, But we, though toiling underneath the line, Crave what they will, there's quantum sufficit. Must makeour hay now while the weather's fine. “ Lord!” cries my Lady Wormwood (who Your good old hay-maker, long here employ'd, loves tattle, The sun-shine of your smiles who still enjoy’d; And puts mucts salt and pepper in her prattle) The fields which long he mow'd will not forsake, Just risen at noon, all night at cards when Nor quite forego the sithe, the fork, and rake; threshing, But take the field, even in the hottest day, Strong tea and scandal-bless me, how reAnd kindly help us to get in our hay.
freshing ! “Give me the papers, Lisp---how bold and free!
“ Last nighi Lord L. (sips] was caught with $ 96. Prologue to the Spanish Barber, 1777.
Colman." For aching heads, what charming sal volatile! Once more froin Ludgate-hill behold Paul (sips.] Prig!
[wig! “ If Mrs. B. will still continue flirting, The same spruce air, you see, same coat, same “We hope she 'll draw, or we'll undraw, the A mercer smart and dapper all allow,
curtain. As ever at shop-door shot off a bow.
“ Fine satire, poz! in public all abuse it! This summer for I love a little prance “ But, by ourselves, (sips.] our praise we can't This summer, gentlefolks, I've been to France, refuse it.
(star."To mark the fashions--and to learn to dance. “Now, Lisp, read you—there, at that dash and I, and dear Mrs Prig, the first of Graces ! Yes, ma’ain-A certain lord had best beware, At Calais, in the diligence took places; “ Who lives not twenty miles from GrovesnorTravelld through Boulogne, Amiens, and square; Chantilly,
“ For should he Lady W. find willing, All in a line-as straight as Piccadilly! “ Wormwood is bitter."-0! that's ine-the To Paris come, their dresses made me stare villain! Their fav’rite color is the French queen's hair:
" Throw it behind the fire, and never more They're all so fine, so shabby, and so gay, “Let that vile paper come within my door." They look like chimney-sweepers on May-day;
Thus at our friends we laugh, who feelthedart;
so swifi, the monster there's no gagA little weaver, whom I long have known,
ging i Has work'd it up, and begs to have it shown Cut Scandal's head off-still the tongue is wag. But pray observe, my friends, 'tis not his own. ging. I broughtit over--nay, if it miscarries, [Paris." | Proud of your smiles, once lavishly bestow'd, He'll cry, " 'Tis none of mine it came from Again our young Don Quixote takes the road; But should you like it, he'll soon let you know, To show his gratitude, ne draws his pen, 'Twas spun and manufactur'd in Soho. And seeks this hydra, Scandal, in its den ;
From his fell gripe the frighted fair to save $99. Prologue to A Word to the Wise, pero Though he should fail, th attempt must please formed for the Benefit of Mr. Kelly's Family. the brave.
JOHNSON. For your applause, all perils he would through, or Tight or wrong, once hooted from the stage
a , Till ev'ry drop of blood that's ink-is spilt for From zeal or malice now no more we dread, you.
For English vengeance wars not with the dead.
A generous foe regards with pitying eye $ 98. Epilogue to the same. 1777. Spoken The man whom fate has laid where all must lie. by Mrs. Abington, in the Character of Lady To wit reviving from its author's dust Teazel.
COLMAN. Be kind, ye judges, or at least be just : I, who was late so volatile and gay, For no renew'd hostilities invade Like a trade-wind must now blow all one way; | Th' oblivious grave's inviolable shade. Bend all my cares, my studies and my vows, Let one great payment every claim appease, To one old rusty weather-cock-my spouse :
And him who cannot hurt allow to please ; So wills our virtuous bard!~the pie-bald Bayes To please by scenes unconscious of offence, Of crying epilogues and laughing plays. By harmless merriment, or useful sense.
Old bachelors, who marrysmart young wives, Where aught of bright or fair the piece displays, Learn from our play to regulate your lives; Approve it only—'tis too late to praise; Each bring his dear to town—all faults upon If want of skill or want of care appear, her
Forbear to hiss the poet cannot hear : London will prove the very source of honor; By all, like him, must praise and blame be found Plung'd fairly in, like a cold bath, it serves, Ai best a fleeting gleam, or empty sound. When principles relax, to brace the nerves. Yet then shall calm reflections bless the night, Such is my casemand yet I must deplore
When liberal pity dignified delight; That the gay dream of dissipation's o'cr ; When pleasure fir'd her torch at virtue's flame, And say, ye fair, was ever lively wife, And mirth was bounty with an humbler name. Born with a genius for the highest life, Like me untimely blasted in her bloom, Like me condemn'd to such a dismal doom? $ 100. Prologue to Sir Thomas Overbury. 1777. Save money—when I just knew how to waste it!
SHERIDAN. Leave London—just as I began to taste it! Too long the muse, attach'd to regal show, Must I then watch the early-crowing cock? Denies the scene to tales of humbler woe; The melancholy ticking of a clock?
Such as were wont, while yet they charm'd the In the lone rustic hall for ever bounded,
ear, With dogs, cats, rats, and squalling brats sur To steal the plaudit of a silent tear; rounded?
When Otway gave doinestic grief its part, With humble curates can I now retire, And Rowe's familiar sorrows touch'd the heart. (While good Sir Peter boozes with the squire) A sceptred traitor, lash'd by vengeful fate, And at backgammon mortify my soul, A bleeding hero, or a falling state, That pants for loo, or flutters at a vole? (pire, Arethemes (though nobly worth the classic song) Seven's the main-dear sound !--that must ex- Which feebly claim your sighs, nor claim them Lost at hot-cockles round a Christmas fire!
long; The transient hour of fashion too soon spent, Too great for pity, they inspire respect, “ Farewell the tranquil mind, farewell conteni! Their deeds astonish, rather than affect; Farewell the plumed head-the cushion'd téte, Proving how rare the heart that woe can move, That takes the cushion from his proper seat ! Which reason tells us we can never prove. Thespirit-stirringdrum!-card-drumsl mean- Other the scene, where sadly stand confest Spadille, odd trick, pam, basto, king, and queen! The private pang that rends the sufferer's breast. And you, ye knockers, that with brazen throat When sorrow sits upon a parent's brow, The welcome visitor's approach denute- When fortune mocks the youthful lover's row, Farewell! all quality of high renown,
All feel the tale--for whoʻso mean but knows Pride, pomp,and circumstance, of glorious town, What fathers' sorrows are, what lovers' woes? Farewell !---your revels I partake no more, On kindred ground our bard his fabric built, And Laily Teazel's occupation's o'er." And placed a mirror there for private guilt; All this I told our bard—he smil'd, and said Where, fatal union! will appear combina 'twas clear
An angel's form and an abandon'd mind; I ought to play deep tragedy next year: Honor attempting passion to reprove, Meanwhile he drew' wise inorals from his play, And friendshipstruggling with unhallow'd lore! And in these solenia periods stalk'd away: Yet view not, critics, with severe regard, “Blest were the fair, like you her faults who | The orphan offspring of an orphan bard, stopp d,
Doom'd, whilst he wrote, uupitied to sustain And clos'd her follies when the curtain dropp’d! More real mis’ries than his pen could feign! No more in vice or error to engage,
Il-fated Savage! at whose birth was giv'n Or play the fool at large on life's great stage!" | No parent but the Muse, no friend but Heaven!
* Upon the first representation of this play 1770, it was damned from the violence of party.
Whose youth no brother knew, with social care $ 102. Prologue to the Princess of Parma. To soothe bis suff'rings, or demand to share;
CUMBERLAND. No wedded partner of his mortal woe,
Ere dark November, with his dripping wings, To win his smile at all that fate could do;
Shuts out the cheerful face of men and things, While, at his death, nor friend's nor mother's You all can tell how soon the dreary scene tear
Affects your wives and daughters with thespleen. Fell on the track of his deserted bier !
Madam begins—“My dear, these odious rains So pleads the tale * that gives future times will bring on all my old rheumatic pains ; The son's misfortunes, and the parent's crimes; In fifty places it came in last night There shall his fame (if own'd to-night) survive, This vile old crazy mansion's such a fright!" Fix'd by the hand that bids our language live! “ What's to be done?"-" In very truth, my
I think 'twere better for us to remove." $ 101. Prologue to Bonduca. 1778. Garrick. This said, if as it chance that gentle spouse
Bears but a second int'rest in the house, To modern Britons let the old appear The bill is pass'd—no sooner said than done. This night, to rouse 'em for this anxious year: Up springs the hen-bird, and the covey's gone : To raise that spirit, which of yore, when rais'd, Then hey for London! there the game begins; Made even Romans tremble while they prais'd: Bouquets, and diamond stars, and golden pins, To rouse that spirit, which through every age
A thousand freakish wants, a thousand sighs, Has wak'd the lyre, and warm'd th' historian's A thousand poutings, and ten thousand lies,
page ; That dauntless spirit, which on Cressy's plain Trim, and new-rigg'd, and launch'd for pleaRush'd from the heart through ev'ry British Our madam comes, her goslings at her tail;
Away they scamper to present their faces Nerv'd ev'ry arm the numerous host to dare,
At Johnson's citadel, for side-box places. Whilst Edward's valor shone the guiding star, He to their joint and supplicating moan Whose beams dispers’d the darkness of despair: Presents a face of brass, a heart of stone; Whate'er the craft or number of his foes,
Or, monarch-like, while their address is stating, Ever from danger Britain's glory rose.
Sends them a “veto" by his lord in waiting. To the mind's eye let the fifth Harry rise,
Returning thence, the disappointed Aeet And in that vision boasting France despise ; Anchors in Tavistock's fantastic street; Then turn to later deeds your sires have wrought, There under Polly's colors gaily rides, When Anna ruld, and might Marlb'rough Where humor points, or veering passion guides. fought.
In vain the steward racks, and tenants rave: Shall Chatham die and be forgott?- no! Money she wants, and money she will have. Warm from its source let grateful sorrow flow; Meanwhile, terrific hangs the unpaid bill, His matchless ardor fir'd each fear-struck mind, Long as from Portman-square to Ludgate-hill
. Hisgenius soar'd when Britons droop'dand pin'd; The squire, exhausted, in desponding plight Whilst each State Atlas sunk beneath the load, Creeps to his chambers to avoid the sight, His heart unshook with patriot virtue glow'd; Or at the Mount with some old snarler chimes Like Hercules, he freed 'em from the weight, In damning wives, and railing at the times. And on his shoulders fix'd the tottering state; Such is the scene!-If then we fetch you
down His strength the monsters of the land defied,
Amusements which endear the smoky town, To raise his country's glory was his pride,
And through the peasant's poor but useful hands And for her service, as he liv’d, he died.
We circulate the produce of your lands;
know, And scorn the threats of an invading foe: Hatching and feeding every civil broil, § 103. Epilogue to Percy. 1778. GARRICK. France looks with envy on our happy soil ; I must, will speak-I hope my dress and When mischief's on the wing she cries for air war,
Announce the man of fashion, not the play'r: Insults distress, and braves her conqueror. Though gentlemen are now forbid the scenes, But Shakspeare sung and well this land he Yet I have rush'd through heroes, kings, and knew,
queens; Ohear his voice!that“ nought shall make us rue, Resolv’d, in pity to this polish'd age, • If England to itself do rest but true.” To drive these ballad-heroes from the stage
• Life of Richard Savage, by Dr. Samuel Johnson. + Lord Chathaun died May 11, 1778. * This proiogue was spoken at the private theatre of Mr. Hanbury, of Kelmarsh in Not
“ To drive the deer with hound and horn, In studious dishabille behold her sit, Earl Percy took his way;
A letter'd gossip, and a housewife wit; The child may rue that is unborn
At once invoking, though for different views, The hunting of that day."
Her gods, her cook, her milliner, and muse. A pretty basis truly, for a maudlin play!
Round her strew'd room a frippery chaos lies, What! shall a scribbling, senseless woman, dare A checquer'd wreck of notable and wise ; To offer to your tastes such tasteless fare? Bills, books, caps,couplets,combs, a varied mass, Is Douglas, or is Percy, fir'd with passion,
Oppress the toilet, and obscure the glass;
Unfinish'd here an epigram is laid,
Here new-born plays foretaste the town's apWe've no such frantic nobles now-a-days.
plause, Could we believeold stories, thosestrange fellows There, dormant patterns lie for future gauze : Married for love, couldof their wives be jealous A moral essay now is all her care ; Nay, constant to 'em toomand, what is worse, A satire next, and then a bill of fare: The vulgar souls thought cuckoldom a curse!
A scene she now projects, and now a dish; Most wedded pairs had then one purse, one mind, Here's act the first and here-Remove with
fish. One bed too-so preposterously join'd! From such barbarity
thank Heaven!) we're re- Now while this eye in a fine phrensy rolls, fin'd.
That, soberly casts up a bill for coals; Old songs at home their happiness record, Black pios and daggers in one leaf she sticks, From hoine they sep'rate carrriages abhorr’d-And tears, and thread, and bowls, and thimbles
mix. One horse serv'd both—my lady rode behind
Sappho, 'tis true, long vers’d in epic song, 'Twas death alone could snap their bonds asun
For years esteem'd all household studies wrong; Now tack'd so slightly, not to snap's the wonder.
When, dire mishap! though neither shame Nay, death itself could not their hearts divide, nor sin,
They mix'd their love with monumental pride; Sappho herself, and not her muse, lies in.
The virgin Nine in terror Ay the bow's,
And matron Juno claims despotic pow'r : Why scour their rusty armours: what's the use? Soon Gothic hags the classic pile o'erturn, 'Twould not your nicer optics much regale,
A caudle-cup supplants the sacred urn; To see us beaux bend under coats of mail :
Nor books nor implements escape their rage, Should we our limbs with iron doublets bruise, They spiketheink-stand, and they rend the page : Good Heaven ! how much court-plaster we
Poems and plays one barbarous fate partake; should use !
Ovid and Plautus suffer at the stake; We wear no armour now but on our shoes.
And Aristotle's only sar'd—to wrap plum-cake. Let not with barbarism true taste be blended ; and dare--but hold—I
must repress my spleen:
Yet shall a woman tempt the tragic scene?
While Shakspeare's spirit seems to aid her cause,
And gave the gentlest laurel that is worshipp'd $ 104. Epilogue to Fatal Falsehood. 1779.
SHERIDAN. Unhand me, gentlemen. By Heaven, I say,
$ 105. Prologue to the Fathers. 1779. I'll make a ghost of him who bars my way.
GARRICK. [Behind the scenes.
When from the world departs a son of Fame, Forth let ine come-a poetaster true,
His deeds or works embalm his precious name; As lean as Envy, and as baneful too;
Yet, not content, the public call for art, On the dull audience let me vent my rage, To rescue from the tomb his mortal part; Or drive these female scribblers from the stage. Demand the painter's and the sculptor's hand, For sense or history, we've done but these : To spread his mimic form throughout the land; The law of liberty and wit they seize; A form, perhaps, which living was neglected, In tragic-comic-pastoral—they dare to please. And, when it could not feel respect, respected. Each puny
hard must surely burst with spite, This night, no bust or picture claims your praise; To find that women with such fame can write: Our claim's superior-we his Spirit raise ; But O, your partial favor is the cause, From 'Time's dark store-house bring a long-lost Who feed their follies with such full applause; play, Yet still our tribe shall seek to blast their fame, And drag it from oblivion into day. And ridicule each fair pretender's aim, But who the author? Need I name the wit Where the dull duties of domestic life Whom nature prompted as his genius writ? Wage with the muse's toils eternal strife. Truth smild on Fancy for each well-wrought What motley cares Corilla's mind perplex,
story, While maids and metaphors conspire to vex! Where characters live, act, and stand, before ye.