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A Tale of a Tub (Jonson)/Act I/Scene VII

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This text follows the original spelling of the 1640 folio. Roll-over notes have been added to translate some obscure spellings.




Lady Tub, Wispe.

   Lad. How now, Wispe? Ha' you
A Valentine yet? I'm taking th' air to chuse one.
   Wis. Fate send your Ladyship a fit one then.
   Lad. VVhat kind of one is that?
   Wis. A proper Man,
To please your Ladyship.
                                   Lad. Out o' that Vanity,
That takes the foolish Eye: Any poor creature,
VVhose want may need my alms, or courtesie,
I rather wish; so Bishop Valentine
Left us Example to do Deeds of Charity;
To feed the hungry, cloath the naked, visit
The weak and sick; to entertain the poor,
And give the dead a Christian Funeral:
These were the works of Piety he did practise,
And bade us imitate; not look for Lovers,
Or handsome Images to please our Senses.
I pray thee, Wispe, deal freely with me now:
VVe are alone, and may be merry a little:
Tho' art none o' the Court-Glories, nor the VVonders
For VVit or Beauty i' the City: tell me,
VVhat Man would satisfie thy present Fancy?
Had thy ambition leave to chuse a Valentine,
VVithin the Queens Dominion, so a Subject.
   Wis. Yo' ha' gi' me a large scope, Madam, I confess,
And I will deal with your Ladyship sincerely:
I'll utter my whole heart to you. I would have him
The bravest, richest, and the properest Man
A Taylor could make up; or all the Poets,
VVith the Perfumers: I would have him such,
As not another VVoman, but should spite me:
Three City-Ladies should run mad for him:
And Country-Madams infinite.
   Lad. You'ld spare me,
And let me hold my Wits?
   VVis. I should with you ??
For the young Squire, my Master's sake, dispense
A little; but it should be very little.
Then all the Court-Wives I'ld ha' jealous of me,
As all their Husbands jealous of them:
And not a Lawyers Puss of any Quality,
But lick her lips, for a snatch in the Terme time.
   Lad. Come,
Let's walk: we'll hear the rest as we go on:
You are this Morning in a good Vein, Dido:
Would I could be as merry. My Son's absence
Troubles me not a little: though I seek
These ways to put it off; which will not help:
Care that is entred once into the Breast,
Will have the whole possession, ere it rest.