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Read The Works of Aphra Behn Volume Ii Part 89

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[_Going out is stopt by Sir_ Signal_.

_Enter Sir_ Sig. Tick. Petro.

Sir _Sig_. Signior, I have brought Mr. _Tickletext_ to beg your Pardon– Sir.

_Fil_. I’ve other business, Sir. [_Goes out_.

_Gal_. Come, let’s follow him; and you, my generous Cavalier, must give me leave to beg the Honour of your Friendship.

_Lau_. My Inclinations, Sir, have given you more–pray let me wait on you to your Lodgings, lest a farther Insolence shou’d be offer’d you.

_Gal_. Sir, you oblige too fast.

[_They go out_.

Sir _Sig_. Ah, _che Diavilo Ayles_, these hot-brain’d fellows, sure, they’re drunk.

_Pet_. Oh, fy, Signior, drunk, for a Man of Quality–’tis intolerable.

Sir _Sig_. Ay: why how so, Signior _Morigoroso_?

_Pet. Imbriaco_ had made it a fine Speech indeed.

Sir _Sig_. Why, faith, and so it had, as thus,–_ach Diavilo Ayles_, these are hot-brain’d Fellows, sure they are _imbriaco_,–Now, wou’d not I be drunk for a thousand Crowns: _Imbriaco_ sounds _Cinquante per cent_ better.–Come, n.o.ble Signior, let’s _andiamo a casa_, which is as much as to say, let’s amble home.–

_Tick_. In troth, wondrous expert–_Certo_, Signior, he’s an apt Scholar.

Sir _Sig_. Ah, Sir, you shall see, when I come to my Civilities.–

_Pet_. Where the first Lesson you shall learn, is, how to give and how to receive with a Bon-Grace.

_Tick_. That receiving Lesson I will learn my self.

_Pet_. This unfrequented part of the Garden, Signior, will fit our purpose as well as your Lodgings.–first then–Signiors, your Address.

[_Puts himself in the middle_.

[Petro _bows on both sides, they do the like_.

–Very well, that’s at the Approach of any Person of Quality, after which you must take out your Snuff-Box.

Sir _Sig_. Snuff-Box; why, we take no Snuff, Signior.

_Pet_. Then, Sir, by all means you must learn: for besides the Mode and Gravity of it, it inviveates the _Pericranium_; that is, sapientates the Brain,–that is, inspires Wit, Thought, Invention, Understanding, and the like–you conceive me, Signiors– [_Bowing_.

Sir _Sig_. Most profoundly, Signior.– [_Bowing_.

_Pet_.–Then, Signiors, it keeps you in confidence, and Countenance; and whilst you gravely seem to take a snush, you gain time to answer to the purpose, and in a politick Posture–as thus–to any intricate Question.

_Tick_. Hum–_certo_, I like that well; and ’twere admirable if a Man were allow’d to take it when he’s out in’s Sermon.

_Pet_. Doubtless, Signior, you might, it helps the Memory better than Rosemary: therefore I have brought each of you a Snuff-Box.

Sir _Sig_. By no means: excuse me Signior.

[_Refuses to take ’em_.

_Pet_. Ah, Baggatelles, Signior, Baggatelles; and now, Signiors, I’ll teach you how to take it with a handsom Grace: Signior, your Hand–and yours, Signior; [_Lays Snuff on their hands_.

–so, now draw your hand to and fro under your Noses, and snuff it hard up–Excellent well.

[_They daub all their Noses, and make Grimaces, and sneeze_.

Sir _Sig_. Methinks, Signior, this Snuff stinks most d.a.m.nably: pray, what scent do you call this?

_Pet_. _Cackamarda Orangate_, a rare Perfume I’ll a.s.sure ye, Sir.

Sir _Sig_. _Cackamarda Orangate_; and ’twere not for the Name of _Cackamarda_, and so forth, a Man had as good have a Sir-reverence at his Nose.

[_Sneezes often, he crys_ bonprovache.

_Pet_. _Bonprovache_–Signior, you do not understand it yet, _bonprovache_.

Sir _Sig_. Why, Sir, ’tis impossible to endure this same _Cackamarda_; why a.s.safetida is odoriferous to it.


_Pet_. ‘Tis your right _Dulce Piquante_, believe me:–but come, Signiors, wipe your Noses, and proceed to your giving Lesson.

Sir _Sig_. As how, Signior?

_Pet_. Why–present me with something–that–Diamond on your Finger, to shew the manner of giving handsomly.

[_Sir_ Sig. _gives it him_.

–Oh, fie, Signior–between your Finger and Thumb–thus–with your other Fingers at a distance–with a speech, and a bow.–

Sir _Sig_. _Ill.u.s.trissimo_ Signior, the manifold Obligations.

_Pet_. Now a fine turn of your hand–thus–Oh, that sets off the Present, and makes it sparkle in the Eyes of the Receiver.– [_Sir_ Sig. _turns his hand_.

Sir _Sig_. Which you have heap’d upon me,–

_Pet_. There flourish again.

[_He flourishes_.

Sir _Sig_. Oblige me to beg your acceptance of this small Present, which will receive a double l.u.s.tre from your fair Hand.

[_Gives it him_.

_Pet_. Now kiss your fingers ends, and retire back with a bow.

_Tick_. Most admirably perform’d.

Sir _Sig_. Nay, Sir, I have Docity in me, though I say’t: Come, Governor, let’s see how you can out-do me in the Art of presenting.

_Tick_. Well, Sir, come; your Snuff-Box will serve instead of my Ring, will it not?

_Pet_. By no means, Sir, there is such a certain Relation between a Finger and a Ring, that no Present becomes either the giving or the receiving Hand half so well.


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