A Select Collection of Old English Plays, Volume 9 eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 508 pages of information about A Select Collection of Old English Plays, Volume 9.

APP.  Downwards, I’ll swear, for there’s stinking lies in them.

MEN.  But what, should I light a candle to the bright sunshine of my glorious renown?  The whole world is full of Mendacio’s fame.

APP.  And so it will be so long as the world is full of fame.

MEN.  But, sirrah, how hast thou done this long time?

APP.  In as much request as thyself.  To begin with the court, as thou didst:  I lie with the ladies all night, and that’s the reason they call for cullies and gruellies so early before their prayers.  Your gallants never sup, breakfast, or bever[214] without me.

MEN.  That’s false, for I have seen them eat with a full stomach.

APP.  True, but because they know a little thing drives me from them, therefore in midst of meat they present me with some sharp sauce or a dish of delicate anchovies, or a caviare,[215] to entice me back again.  Nay, more:  your old sires, that hardly go without a prop, will walk a mile or two every day to renew their acquaintance with me.  As for the academy, it is beholding to me for adding the eighth province unto the noble Heptarchy of the liberal sciences.[216]

MEN.  What’s that, I prythee?

APP.  The most desired and honourable art of cookery.  Now, sirrah, in the
city I am------’st, ’st!  O, the body of a louse!

MEN.  What, art a louse in the city?

APP.  Not a word more; for yonder comes Phantastes and somebody else.

MEN.  What a pox can Phantastes do?

APP.  Work a miracle, if he would prove wise.

MEN.  ’Tis he indeed, the vilest nup.[217] Yet the fool loves me exceedingly; but I care not for his company, for if he once catch me, I shall never be rid of him.

[Exeunt APPETITUS and MENDACIO.

SCAENA SECUNDA.

PHANTASTES, a swart-complexioned fellow, but quick-eyed, in a white satin doublet of one fashion, green velvet hose of another, a fantastical hat with a plume of feathers of several colours, a little short taffeta cloak, a pair of buskins cut, drawn out with sundry-coloured ribbands, with scarfs hung about him after all fashions and of all colours, rings, jewels, a fan, and in every place other odd complements.[218] HEURESIS, a nimble-sprited page in the newest fashion, with a garland of bays, &c.

    PHANTASTES, HEURESIS.

PHA.  Sirrah boy!  Heuresis! boy! how now, biting your nails?

HEU.  Three things have troubled my brain this many a day, and just now, when I was laying hold on the invention of them, your sudden call made them, like Tantalus’s apples, fly from my fingers.

PHA.  Some great matters, questionless; what were they?

HEU.  The quadrature of a circle, the philosopher’s stone, and the next way to the Indies.

PHA.  Thou dost well to meditate on these three things at once, for they’ll be found out altogether—­ad Graecas Calendas; but let them pass, and carry the conceit I told you this morning to the party you wot of.  In my imagination ’tis capricious; ’twill take, I warrant thee.

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A Select Collection of Old English Plays, Volume 9 from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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