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The works of John Dryden, $c now first collected in eighteen volumes. $p Volume 02

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SCENE.—London. THE WILD GALLANT. ACT I. SCENE I.—FAILER entering to BURR, who is putting on his buff-coat.

Fail. What! not ready yet, man?

Burr. You do not consider my voyage from Holland last night.

Fail. Pish, a mere ferry; get up, get up: My cousin's maids will come and blanket thee anon; art thou not ashamed to lie a-bed so long?

Burr. I may be more ashamed to rise; and so you'll say, dear heart, if you look upon my clothes: the best is, my buff-coat will cover all.

Fail. Egad, there goes more cunning than one would think to the putting thy clothes together. Thy doublet and breeches are Guelphs and Ghibellins to one another; and the stitches of thy doublet are so far asunder, that it seems to hang together by the teeth. No man could ever guess to what part of the body these fragments did belong, unless he had been acquainted with 'em as long as thou hast been. If they once lose their hold, they can never get together again, except by chance the rags hit the tallies of one another. He, that gets into thy doublet, must not think to do it by storm; no, he must win it inch by inch, as the Turk did Rhodes.

Burr. You are very merry with my wardrobe; but, till I am provided of a better, I am resolved to receive all visits in this truckle-bed.

Fail. Then will I first scotch the wheels of it, that it may not run: Thou hast cattle enough in it to carry it down stairs, and break thy neck; 'tis got a yard nearer the door already.

Enter Boy.

Boy. Sir, Mr Bibber your tailor's below, and desires to speak with you.

Fail. He's an honest fellow, and a fashionable; he shall set thee forth, I warrant thee.

Burr. Ay; but where's the money for this, dear heart?

Fail. Well, but what think you of being put into a suit of clothes without money? [Aside.

Burr. You speak of miracles.

Fail. Do you not know Will Bibber's humour?

Burr. Pr'ythee, what have I to do with his humour?

Fail. Break but a jest, and he'll beg to trust thee for a suit; nay, he will contribute to his own destruction, and give thee occasions to make one. He has been my artificer these three years; and, all the while, I have lived upon his favourable apprehension. Boy, conduct him up. [Exit Boy.

Burr. But what am I the better for this? I ne'er made jest in all my life.

Fail. A bare clinch will serve the turn; a car-wichet, a quarter-quibble, or a pun.

Burr. Wit from a Low Country soldier! One, that has conversed with none but dull Dutchmen these ten years! What an unreasonable rogue art thou? why, I tell thee, 'tis as difficult to me, as to pay him ready money.

Fail. Come, you shall be ruled for your own good; I'll throw the clothes over you to help meditation. And, upon the first opportunity, start you up, and surprise him with a jest.

Burr. Well, I think this impossible to be done: but, however, I'll attempt. [Lies down, FAILER covers him.

Fail. Husht! he's coming up.


Bib. 'Morrow, Mr Failer: What, I warrant you think I come a dunning now?

Fail. No, I vow to gad, Will; I have a better opinion of thy wit, than to think thou would'st come to so little purpose....