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Gosuell Strett ;





May Day : a Comedy. By George Chapman . . 1
The Spanish Gipsy : a Comedy. By T. Middleton

and W. Rowley 115

The Changeling : a Tragedy. By T. Middleton

and W. Rowley . 219

More Dissemblers besides Women : a Comedy. By

T. Middleton 325








Lorenzo, father to /Emilia.

Honorio, father to Aurelio.

Lodovico, nephew to Lorenzo.

Aurelio, son to Honorio, and lover of Emilia.

Lucretio, appears throughout in the disguise of a woman, under

the name of Lucretia.
Leonoro, in love with the supposed Lucretia.
Quintiliano, the husband of Francischina.
Innocent io.

Gasparo, an old clown, the proposed husband of /Emilia.

Angelo, servant to Aurelio, and cousin to Francischina.
Fannio, page to Quintiliano.

/Emilia, daughter to Lorenzo, in love with Aurelio.

Theagine, appears throughout in the disguise of page to Leonoro,

and under the assumed name of Lionell.
Francischina, wife to Quintiliano.
Temperance, servant to Honorio.

Tailor; Tailor's Son; Cuthbert, a Barber ; Dancers, Sfc. Sfc.

* As the real names and sex of Lucretio and Theagine do not
appear until the last scene, the practice of the old quarto has been
observed, and their assumed names are prefixed to their speeches.


ACT I. Scene I.

A number of young Persons are discovered singing
and dancing ; Lorenzo enters with Papers in
his Hand : after some time they go out dancing.

Lor. Well done, my lusty bloods, well done !
Fit, fit observance for this May-morning * ; not
the May month alone, they take when it comes ;
nor the first week of 'that month ; nor the first
day; but the first minute of the first hour of the
first day. Lose no time, bloods, lose no time ;
though the sun go to bed never so much before
you, yet be you up before him ; call the golden v
sluggard from the silver arms of his lady, to light
you into yours ; when your old father January
here in one of his last days, thrusts his forehead
into the depth of May's fragrant bosom, what may
you Aprils perform then? Oh, what may you do?
Well, yet will I say thus much for myself, where-
soever the affections of youth are, there must needs
be the instruments, and where the instruments are,

* Mr. Strutt has an extract from Hall relating to Henry VIII.
and his queen Katherine going a maying, which will give the
reader some idea of what was considered a " fit observance for
a May morning." It is something too long for a note. The
curious reader may derive some information on this head from
the speech of Ralph at the conclusion of Act IV. of Beaumont
and Fletcher's " Knight of the Burning Pestle," and a full account
in Brand's " Pop. Ant." vol. i. p. 179.


ft MAV DAY :

there must of necessity be the faculties. What
am I short of them then ? A sound old man, ably,
constituted, wholesomely dieted, that took his
May temperately at their ages, and continued
his own; why should he not continue their ages
in his own ? By the mass I feel nothing that
stands against it, and therefore, sweet May, I
salute thee with the youngest : 1 have love to
employ thee in, as well as the proudest young
princock, and so have at you, Mistress Francis-
china: have at you, Mistress Frank: I'll spread
my nets for you i'faith, though they be my very
purse nets, wherein what heart will not willingly
lie panting?

Enter Angelo.

Ang. How now ? Gods my life ! I wonder'd
what made this May morning so cold, and now
I see 'tis this January that intrudes into it ; what
paper is that he holds in hand, trow we?

Lor. Here have I put her face in rhyme, but
I fear my old vein will not stretch to her con-

O hair, no hair but beams stolen from the sun *.

Ang. Out upon her, if it be she that I think
she has a fox-red cranion.

Lor. A forehead that disdains the name of fair.

Ang. And reason, for 'tis a foul one.

Lor. A matchless eye.

Ang. True, her eyes be not matches.

Lor. A cheek vermilion red.

* This is evidently a burlesque on a speech of Hierouymo, in
the " Spanish Tragedy," which has heen parodied and ridiculed
by Jonson, Tomkis, and several of the dramatic writers of that


Ang. Painted, I warrant you.

Lor. Afar commanding mouth.

Ang. It stretches to her ears indeed.

Lor. A nose made out of wax.

Ang. A red nose, in sincerity.

Lor. This could I send, but person, person
does it : a good presence, to bear out a good
wit ; a good face, a pretty court leg, and a deft *
dapper personage ; no superfluous dimensions,
but fluent in competence ; for it is not Hector
but Paris, not the full armful, but the sweet
handful that ladies delight in.

Ang. Oh, notable old whyniard.

Lor. Such a size of humanity now, and brain
enough in it, it is not in the strength of a woman
to withstand. Well ! she may hold out a parley
or two, for 'tis a weak fort that obeys at the first
or second summons, if she resist the third she is
discharged, though she yield in future : for then it
appears it was no fault of hers, but the man's that
would take no denial. What rests now? means
for access : true. Oh, an honest bawd were
worth gold now.

Ang. A plague upon him ! I had thought to
have appeared to him, but now if I do, he will
take me for the man he talks on: 1 will there-
fore post by his dull eye-sight, as in haste of bu-

Lor. What, Signior Angelo ? soft I command

* Deft is a word still in use in the northern counties, and means,
in the text, " neat and well looking." It is used in Broome's
" Northern Lass" in the same sense : " He said I were a deft
lass, hut there he feign'd."


Ang. God's precious ! what mean you, sir?

Lor. I would be loath to be outrun I assure
you, sir: was I able to stay you?

Ang. Your ability stood too stiff, sir, beshrew
me else.

Lor. Oh, most offenceless fault! I would thou
wouldst blaze my imperfection to one thou
knowst, i'faith.

Ang. Well, sir, another time ; tell me where
she is, and I'll do so much for you gratis. Good
morrow, sir.

Lor. Nay stay, good Angelo.

Ang. My business says nay, sir; you have
made me stay to my pain, sir, I thank you. (

Lor. Not a whit, man, I warrant thee.

Ang. Go to then, briefly, to whom shall J
commend your imperfections; will you tell me if
I name her?

Lor. That I will, i'faith, boy.

Ang. Is not her hair, no hair, but beams stolen
from the sun ?

Lor. Black, black as an ouzell.

Ang. A forehead that disdains the ?iame of

Lor. Away, witch, away !

Ang. A matchless eye.

Lor, Nay, fie! fie! fie! I see thou' rt a very
devil, Angelo. And in earnest, I jested when I
said my desire of thy friendship touch'd myself;
for it concerns a friend of mine just of my stand-

Ang. To whom then would he be remembered
that I can solicit ?

Lor. To sweet Mistress Francischina : with


whom I hear thou art ready to lie down, thou
art so great with her.

Ang. I am as great as a near kinsman may be
with her, sir, not otherwise.

Lor. A good consanguinity : and, good An-
gelo, to her wilt thou deliver from my friend, in
all secresy, this poor brace of bracelets ?

Ang. Perhaps I will, sir, when I know what
the gentleman and his intent is.

Lor. Never examine that, man; I would not
trouble you with carrying too much at once to
her; only tell her, such a man will resolve her,
naming me : and I do not greatly care, if I take
the pains to come to her, so I stay not long, and
be let in privily : and so, without making many
words, here they be; put them up closely, I be-
seech thee, and deliver them as closely.

Ang. Well, sir, I love no contention with
friends, and therefore pocket many things that
otherwise I would not : but I pray, sir, license
me a question. Do not I know this gentleman
that offers my cousin this kindness ?

Lor. Never saw'st him in thy life, at least
never knew st him ; but for his bounty sake to
all his well willers, if this message be friendly
discharged, I may chance put a dear friend of
him into your bosom, sir, and make you profit-
ably acquainted.

Ang. But I pray you, sir, is he not a well
elderly gentleman?

Lor. Wide, wide ; as young as day, I protest
to thee.

Ang. I know he is young too, but that is in


ability of body: but is he not a. pretty squat gen-
ileman, as you shall see amongst a thousand ?

Lor. Still from the cushion, still ; tall and
high, like a cedar.

Ang. I know he is tall also, but it is in his
mind, sir ; and it is not Hector but Paris, not the
full armful, but the sweet handful that a lady de-
lights to dandle.

Lor. Now the good devil take thee, if there
be any such in hell, hell I beseech thee !

Ang. Well, well, Signior Lorenzo, i'faith the
little squire is thought to be as peerless a piece
of flesh, for a piece of flesh, as any hunts the
whole pale of Venus, I protest t' thee.

Lor. I cannot contain myself, i'faith, boy ; if
the wenches come in my walk, I give 'em that
they come for; I dally not with them.

Ang. I know you do not, sir; (aside) his dal-
lying days be done.

Lor. It is my infirmity, and I cannot do withal,
though I die fort*.

Ang. I believe you, sir.

Lor. There are certain envious old fellows,
my neighbours, that say, I am one unwieldly and
stiff: Angelo, didst ever hear any wench com-
plain of my stiffness ?

Ang. Never in my life : your old neighbours
measure you by themselves.

Lor. Why, there's the matter then?

Ang. But i'faith, sir, do you ever hope to win
your purpose at my losing hands ; knowing her
(as all the world does) a woman of that approved
lowliness of life, and so generally tried ?

* The quarto reads, " to die for't,"


Lor. As for that take thou no care, she's a
woman, is she not ?

Aug. Sure I do take her to have the flesh and
blood of a woman.

Lor. Then good enough, or then bad enough,
this token shall be my gentleman-usher to pre-
pare my access, and then let me alone with her.

Ang. Ay marry, sir, I think you would be
alone with her : well, sir, I will do my best, but
if your gentleman-usher should not get entrance
for you now, it would be a grief to me.

Enter Gasparo, an old Clown.

Lor. Fear it not, man ; gifts and gold, take the
strongest hold : away, here comes a snudge, that
must be my son-in-law : I would be loath he
should suspect these tricks of youth in me, for
fear he fear my daughter will trot after me.

Ang. Fare you well, sir. [Exit.

Gasp. Godge you good * morrow, sir ; godge
you good morrow.

Lor. Good morrow, neighbour Gasparo : I
have talk'd with my daughter, whom I do yet
find a green young plant, and therefore unapt to
bear such ripe fruit. (Aside.) 1 think I might
have said rotten, as yourself; but she is at my

* The quarto reads, " Godge you god morrow, sir; godge you
god morrow." Some readers may think I am not justified in the
alteration; as Gasparo is called an old clown, and it is not im-
probable that the passage was printed as intended to be spoken;
others may think I have done too little, and that it is a misprint
for, " God gi' you good morrow," or, " God ye good morrow,"
which is a common contraction in the old dramatists ; and occurs
in Act II.

10 may day:

disposition, and shall be at yours in the end;
here's my hand, and with my hand take hers.

Gasp. Nay, by my faith, sir, you must give
me leave to shake her portion by the hand first.

Lor. It is ready told for you, sir ; come home
when you will and receive it,

Enter ^Emilia.

And see, yonder she comes ; away, she cannot
yet abide you, because she fears she can abide
you too well.

Gasp. Well, I will come for her portion, sir,
and till then, God take you to his mercy. [Exit.

Lor. Adieu, my good son-in-law, I'll not in-
terrupt her, let her meditate on my late motion. .


JEmil. "lis strange to see the impiety of pa-
Both privileged by custom, and profess'd :
The holy institution of heaven,
Ordaining marriage for proportioned minds,
For our chief human comforts, and t' increase
The loved images of God in men,
Is now perverted to th' increase of wealth ;
We must bring riches forth, and like the cuckoo
Hatch other's eggs; join house to house; in choices
Fit timber-loss and stones, not men and women :


Enter Aurelio.

Ah me! here's one I must shun, would embrace.

Aur. Oh, stay and hear me speak, or see me
die. [Throws himself on the ground.


Enter Lodovico and Giacomo.

Lod. How now ? what have we here ? what a
a loathsome creature mau is being drunk : is it
not pity to see a man of good hope, a toward
scholar, writes a theme well, scans a verse very
well, and likely in time to make a proper man,
a good leg, especially in a boot, valiant, well
.spoken, and in a word, what not? and yet all
this overthrown as you see, drown'd, quite
drown'd in a quart pot.

Giac. Oh, these same wicked healths breed
monstrous diseases.

Lod. Aurelio, speak, man ; Aurelio!

Giac. Pray heaven all be well.

Lod. Oh speak, if any spark of speech remain.
It is thy dear iEmilia that calls.

Aur. Well, well, it becomes not a friend to
touch the deadly wounds of his friend with a
smiling countenance.

Lod. Touch thee ? s'blood ! I could find in
my heart to beat thee: up, in a fool's name, up:
what a scene of foppery have we here ?

Aur. Prithee have done.

Lod. Up cuckoo, Cupid's bird, or by this light
I'll fetch thy father to thee.

Aur. Good Lodovico, if thou lov'st me, leave
me ; thou comest to counsel me from that which 4-
is join'd with my soul in eternity : I must and
will do what I do.

Lod. Do so then, and I protest thou shalt
never lick thy lips after my kinswoman, while thou
liv'st: I had thought to have spoken for thee, if

12 i MAY DAY :

thou hadst taken a manly course with her ; but
to fold up thyself like an urchin *, and lie a calv-
ing to bring forth a husband ? I am ashamed to
think on't : s'blood ! I have heard of wenches
that have been won with singing and dancing,
and some with riding ; but never heard of any
that was won with tumbling, in my life.

Aur. If thou knew'st how vain thou seem'st

Lod. I do it of purpose, to show how vain I
hold thy disease. S'heart ! art thou the first that
has shot at a wench's heart and mist it ? must
that shot that missed her wound thee ? let her
shake her ears f in a shrew's name : were she
my cousin a thousand times, and if I were as
thee, I would make her shake her heels too, be-
fore I would shake mine thus.

Aur. O vanity, vanity !

Lod. S'death ! if any wench should offer to
keep possession of my heart against my will, I'd
fire her out with sack and sugar, or smoke her
out with tobacco, like a hornet ; or purge for
her, for love is but a humour ; one way or other
I would vent her, that's infallible.

Aur. For shame hold thy tongue: methinks
thy wit should feel how stale are these love
storms, and with what general privilege love
pierces the worthiest. Seek to help thy friend,
not mock him.

Lod. Marry, seek to help thyself then ; in a

* *' An urchin," the common hedge-hog.

t " Let her shake her heels," is the reading of the quarto ;
but from what follows, it was impossible it could be right. " Shake
her ears," is an expression still in use, and to be found in Act IL
Scene III. of " Twelfth Night."


halter's name, do not lie in a ditch, and say God
help me ! use the lawful tools he hath lent thee.
Up, I say ; I will bring thee to her.

Aur. Shell not endure me :

Lor. She shall endure thee, do the worst
thou canst to her; ay, and endure thee till thou
canst not endure her ; but then thou must use
thyself like a man, and a wise man; how deep
soever she is in thy thoughts, carry not the prints
of it in thy looks; be bold and careless, and
stand not sauntering afar off, as I have seen you,
like a dog in a furmety pot, that licks his chops
and wags his tail, and fain would lay his lips to
it, but he fears 'tis too hot for him : that's the
only way to make her too hot for thee. He that
holds religious and sacred thought of a woman*
he that bears so reverend a respect to her, that
he will not touch her but with a kist hand and a
timorous heart, he that adores her like his god-
dess, let him be sure she will shun him like her
slave. Alas, good souls, women of themselves
are tractable and tractable enough, and would
return quid for quod still, but we are they that
spoil 'em, and we shall answer for't another day.
We are they that put a kind of wanton melan-
choly into 'em, that makes 'em think their noses
bigger than their faces ; greater than the sun in
brightness ; and whereas Nature made "em but
half fools, we make 'em all fool : and this is our
palpable flattery of them, where they had rather
have plain dealing. Well, in conclusion, I'll to her
instantly, and if I do not bring her to thee, or at
the least some special favour from her, as a feather

14 MAY day:

from her fan,* or a string from her shoe, to wear
in thy hat, and so forth, then never trust my skill
in poultry whilst thou liv'st again. [Exit.

Enter Quintiliano, Innocentio, Francis-
china, Angelo, and Fannio |.

Fran. Thou shalt not to the wars, or if thou dost
I'll bear thee company ; dear Quint, do not offer
to forsake me.

Quint. Hands off, wife; hang not upon me
thus ; how can I maintain thee but by using my
valour? and how can I use that, but in action
and employment? Go in, play at cards with your
Cousin Angelo here, and let it suffice I love thee.

Ang. Come, sweet cousin, do not cloy your
husband with your love so, especially to hinder
his preferment; who shall the duke have to em-
ploy in these martial necessities if not Captain
Quintiliano ? he bears an honourable mind, and
'tis pity but he should have employment. Let
him get a company now, and he will be able to
maintain you like a dutchess hereafter.

lnnoc. Well said, signior Angelo : gossave
me % you speak like a true cousin indeed ! does
he not, Quint. ?

* If the learned commentators on Shakspeare had been aware
of this passage, it would most probably have been adduced by
them on the subject of how fans were made in our poet's time.
See notes on u Merry Wives of Windsor/'

t In the original here is a marginal notice " A purse of twenty
pounds in gold." This is a very conclusive evidence that this
play was originally printed from the theatre copy, as this was
evidently a direction to the property man to furnish Innocentio
with such a purse.

% A contraction, I presume, of " as God shall save me ;" or,
" so God save me."


Quint. He does so, and I thank him ; yet see
how the fool puts finger i' th' eye still.

Ang. I'll cheer her up, I warrant you, captain ;
come, coz, let's in to tables.

Innoc. Farewell, sweet mistress.

Fran. Farewell, my good servant.

Ang. (Aside.) Now take away thy hand, and
show thou didst laugh all this while : good Lord
who would not marry to have so kind a wife
make much on him ? [Exeunt Ang. and Fran.

Quint. After, boy ! give your attendance.

Fan. Could you not spare me money for mine
hostess, where you put me to board ? You're a
whole fortnight in arrearages.

Quint. Attend, I say, the hostess of the Lion
has a leg like a giant ; want for nothing, boy, so
she score truly.

Fan. Faith, sir, she has chalk'd up twenty
shillings already, and swears she will chalk no

Quint. Then let her choak, and choak thou
with her : s'blood ! hobby horse, an she had
chalk'd up twenty pounds, I hope the world
knows I am able to pay it with a wet finger.

Fan. Alas, sir, I think you're able, but the
world does not know it.

Quint. Then the world's an ignorant sir, and
you are an innocent: vanish, boy ! away !

Fan. (Aside.) I hope he will foist some money
for my score, out of this gull here. [Exit.

Innoc. Tis a plaguy good wag, Quint, is't not?

Quint. I'll make him a good one ere I ha' done
with.him; but this same loving fool my wife
now, will never leave weeping, till I make her

16 MAY DAY 1

believe I will not have a company. Who would
be cumbered with these soft-hearted creatures,
that are ever in extremes, either too kind, or
too unkind ?

Innoc. Save me, 'tis true; 'tis a hard thing
must please 'em in sadness.

Quint. Damn me, if I do not pity her with
my heart : plague on her kindness ! she has half
persuaded me to take no company.

Innoc. Nay, sweet Quint., then how shall I be
a lieutenant ?

Quint. Well, an my promise were not past to
thee, I am a villain if all the world should part
Franke and me; think I love thee therefore, and
will do thee credit : It will cost me a great deal
o' this same foolish money to buy me drum and
ensign, and furnish me thoroughly, but the best
is, I know my credit.

Innoc. S'foot! Quint, we'll want no money,
man ; I'll make my row of houses fly first.

Quint. Let 'em walk, let 'em walk ; candle
rents # ! if the wars hold, or a plague come to
the town, they'll be worth nothing.

Innoc. True ; or while I am beyond sea, some
sleepy wench may set fire i' th' bed-straw.

Quint. Right; or there may come an earth-
quake, and overturn 'em.

Innoc. Just; or there may be conjuring, and
the wind may down with 'em.

* I conceive Quintiliano intends (for the purpose of getting
Innocentio to dispose of them with the greater facility) to ex-
press a contempt for the source of Innocentio's revenue, by call-
ing them " candle rents," or rents only sufficient to purchase
candles and such trifles : but I offer this, as all other conjectures,
with hesitation, and leave the passage to the reader's judgment.


Quint. Or some crafty pettifogger may find a
hole in the title ; a thousand casualties belongs
to 'em.

Innoc. Nay, they shall walk, that's certain ; I'll
turn 'em into money.

Quint. That's thy most husbandly course i'faith,
boy ; thou mayst have twenty i' th' hundred for
thy life ; I'll be thy man for two hundred.

Innoc. Wilt, i'faith, Quint? gossave me 'tis done.

Quint. For your life, not otherwise.

Innoc. Well, I desire no more, so you'll re-
member me for my lieutenantship.

Quint. Remember thee ? 'tis thine own already,
boy ; a hundred pounds shall not buy it from
thee ; give me thy hand, I do here create thee
Lieutenant lnnocentio.

Innoc. If you have a company, captain?

Quint. If I have? damn me, if such another
word do not make me put thee out o' th' place
again : if I have a company ? S'foot ! let the duke
deny me one ; I would 'twere come to that once,
that employment should go with the undeserver,
while men of service sit at home, and feed their
anger with the blood of red lattices *. Let the
duke deny me to-day, I'll renounce him to-mor-
row. I'll to the enemy point blank, I'm a villain

Innoc. And I, by heaven I swear.

Quint. Well if that day come, it will prove a
hot day with somebody.

Innoc. But, captain, did not you say that you

Ale houses were formerly known by red lattices at the doors
and windows. See notes on a passage in Act II. of the " Merry
Wives of Windsor.''


18 MAY DAY :

would enter me at an ordinary, that I might
learn to converse ?

Quint. When thou wilt* lieutenant; no better
time than now, for now thou'rt in good clothes,
which is the most material point for thy entrance

Innoc. Ay, but how should I behave myself?

Quint. Marry, sir, when you come first in, you
shall see a crew of gallants of all sorts

Innoc. Nay, captain, if I come first in, I shall
see nobody.

Quint. Tush, man, you must not do so; if
you have good clothes and will be noted, let 'em
all come in before you ; and then, as I said, shall
you see a lusty crew of gallants, some gentle-
men, some none ; but that's all one ; he that
bears himself like a gentleman, is worthy to have
been born a gentleman; some aged have beards,
and some have none ; some have money, and
some have none ; yet all must have meat : now
will all these, I say, at your first entrance, won-
der at you, as at some strange owl; examine
your person, and observe your bearing for a time;
do you then o' th' t'other side seem to neglect
their observance as fast : let your countenance

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Online LibraryCharles Wentworth DilkeOld English plays; being a selection from the early dramatic writers .. (Volume 4) → online text (page 1 of 22)