The copy of the play here reproduced is owned by the University of Michigan, and is reprinted by permission.
* * * * *
Acted at the Duke’s
Licensed Novemb. 22, 1672.
Printed for Thomas Dring,
at the White
Lyon, next Chancery-Lane end in
The Actors Names.
Don Antonio. A Jealous Lord. Mr. Smith. Don Gerardo. Friend to Antonio. Mr. Medburn. Don Francisco. A Young Lord. Mr. Young. Don Sebastian. Friend to Francisco. Mr. Crosby. Jasper. A Villain. Servant to Antonio. Mr. Sandford. Pedro. Servant to Antonio. Mr. Burford. Servant To Gerardo. Mr. Norris. Captain of the Watch. Mr. Nath. Leigh. Souldiers.
Caelia. Wife to Antonio. Mrs. Shadwel. Eugenia. Sister to Caelia. Mrs. Betterton. Flora. Waiting Woman to Caelia. Mrs. Osborn. Nurse To Caelia. Mr. Nokes. Witch. Aunt to Jasper. Mrs. Norris. Spirits. Gipsies.
By Mr. Smith.
To you, great Sovereign Wits, that have such sway,
Without Controul to save, or damn a Play;
That with a pish, my Anthony, or so,
Can the best Rally’d sence at once or’e throw;
And by this pow’r, that none must question now,
Have made the most Rebellious Writers bow,
Our Author, here his low Submission brings,
Begging your pass, calls you the Stages Kings;
He sayes, nay, on a Play-Book, swears it too,
Your pox uppo’nt damn it, what’s here to do?
Your nods, your winks, nay, your least signs of Wit,
Are truer Reason than e’re Poet writ,
And he observes do much more sway the Pit.
For sitting there h’ has seen the lesser gang
Of Callow Criticks down their heads to bang;
Lending long Ears to all that you should say,
So understand, yet never hear the Play:
Then in the Tavern swear their time they’ve lost,
And Curse the Poet put e’m to that cost.
And if one would their just Exceptions know,
They heard such, such, or such a one say so;
And thus in time by your dislikes they rise,
To be thought Judges, though indeed but spyes.
This is not fair your Subjects to betray
To those that strive to Rival you in sway;
That will in time by your expence of wit,
Usurp or’e us, and your successors sit.
These and some other dangers to remove,
We beg that though this Play you disapprove,
Say nothing of it here, and when you’re gone,
We give that leave you’le take to cry it down;
Thus you preserve your pow’r, and we shall be
From Fopps, and Demi-Criticks Censure free.