UTC
The Drunkard; or, the Fallen Saved
Adapted by W.H. Smith
New York: WM. Taylor and Co.1850

SCENE IV.—Landscape View.

Enter PATIENCE BRAYTON, SAM EVANS, OLD JOHNSON. Male and female villagers, R. U. E.Music.


Patience.

  Come, there's young men enough, let's have a ring-play.


All.

  Yes, a ring-play. A ring-play! fall in here.


Sam.

  Come, darnation, who'll go inside?


Patience.

  Go in yourself, Sam.


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Sam.

  Well, I'm agreed. Go on.

  [They form a circle and revolve round the young man, singing.

"I am a rich widow, I live all alone,
I have but one son, and he is my own.
Go, son, go, son, go choose you one,
Go choose a good one, or else choose none."

  [Sam choose one of the girls.—She enters the ring. He kisses her, and the ring goes round.

"Now, you are married you must obey
What you have heard your parents say
Now you are married you must prove true
As you see other's do, so do you."

  [The ring goes round.—Patience, who is in the ring, chooses Old Johnson.


Patience.
Mercy on me, what have I done?
I've married the father instead of the son
His legs are crooked, and ill put on.
They're all laughing at my old man

[A general laugh.


Sam.

  Come, girls, you forget 'tis almost time for Mary Wilson's wedding.


Patience.

  (R.C.) Well, now, ain't we forgetting how proud she must be, going to marry a college bred.


Johnson.

  (L.C.) She'll be none the better for that. Larning don't buy the child a new frock.


Sam.

  Well, let's have a dance, and be off at once.


All.

  Yes. Partners. A dance! A dance! [A village dance, and exit, L.

Enter LAWYER CRIBBS, L.


Cribbs.

  Thus ends my prudent endeavors to get rid of those Wilsons. But, young Middleton, there is yet some hope of him. He is at present annoyed at my well intended advice, but that shall not part us easily. I will do him some unexpected favor, worm myself into his good graces, invite him to the village bar-room, and if he falls, then, ha! ha! I shall see them begging their bread yet. The wife on her bended knees to me, praying for a morsel of food for her starving children—it will be revenge, revenge! Here comes his foster brother, William. I'll wheedle him—try the ground before I put my foot on it.


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Enter WILLIAM DOWTON, whistling, L.


William.

  Lawyer Cribbs, have you seen my poor, little, half-witted sister Agnes, eh?


Cribbs.

  No, William, my honest fellow, I have not. I want to speak to you a moment.


William.

  [Crossing, R.] What does old Razor Chops want with me, I wonder. Well, lawyer, what is it?


Cribbs.

  You seem to be in a hurry. They keep you moving, I see.


William.

  There are pretty busy times, sir. Mr. Edward is going to be married—that's a dose. [Aside.] Senna and salts.


Cribbs.

  Yes, yes, ahem! Glad to hear it.


William.

  Yes, I thought you seemed pleased. [Aside.] Looks as sour as Sam Jones, when he swallowed vinegar for sweet cider.


Cribbs.

  I am a friend to early marriages, although I never was married myself. Give my best respects to Mr. Edward.


William.

  Sir?


Cribbs.

  William, I suppose I leave it to your ingenuity to get me an invitation to the wedding, eh? And here's a half dollar to drink my health.


William.

  No, I thank you, lawyer, I don't want your money.


Cribbs.

  Oh, very well; no offence meant, you know. Let's step into the tavern, and take a horn to the happiness of the young couple.


William.

  Lawyer Cribbs, or Squire, as they call you, it's my opinion, when your uncle Belzebub wants to bribe an honest fellow to do a bad action, he'd better hire a pettifogging bad lawyer to tempt him, with a counterfeit dollar in one hand, and a bottle of rum in the other. [Exit William, R.


Cribbs.

  Ah, ah! You're a cunning scoundrel, but I'll fix you yet. [Agnes sings without, L.

"Brake and fern and cypress dell,
Where the slippery adder crawls

Cribbs.

  Here comes that crazy sister of his. She knows too much for my happiness. Will the creature never die?


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Her voice haunts me like the spectre of the youth that was engaged to her, for my own purposes I ruined, I triumphed over him—he fell—dies in a drunken fit, and she went crazy. Why don't the Alms House keep such brats at home?

Enter AGNES, deranged, L.


Agnes.
"Brake and fern and cypress dell,
Where the slippery adder crawls.
Where the grassy waters well,
By the old moss-covered walls."

For the old man has his grey locks, and the young girl her fantasies.

"Upon the heather, when the weather
Is as wild as May,
So they prance as they dance
And we'll all be gay."

But they poured too much red water in his glass. The lawyer is a fine man, ha, ha! he lives in the brick house yonder. But the will. Ah, ha, ha! The will—


Cribbs.

  [Angrily.] Go home, Agnes, go home.


Agnes.

  Home! I saw a little wren yesterday. I had passed her nest often. I had counted the eggs, they were so pretty—beautiful, so beautiful—rough Robin of the mill came this morning and stole them. The little bird went to her nest, and looked in—they were gone. She chirruped mournfully and flew away. She won't go home any more.


Cribbs.

  Agnes, who let you out? You distress the neighborhood with your muttering and singing. [Threatening.] I'll have you taken care of.


Agnes.

  There's to be a wedding in the village. I saw a coffin carried in full of bridal cake.

"And the bride was red with weeping,
Cypress in her hair."

Can you tell why they cry at weddings? Is it for joy? I used to weep when I was joyful. You never weep, old man. I should have been married, but my wedding dress was mildewed, so we put off the marriage till another day. They'll make a new dress for me. They say he won't come again to me, and then the will, ha, ha, old man, the will.


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Cribbs.

  Ha, confusion! Get you gone, or thus— Seizes her and raises cane, William enters rapidly, R., and throws him round to R. corner


William.

  (L. C.) Why, you tarnation old black varmint! Strike my little, helpless, half-crazed sister! If it was not for your grey hairs, I'd break every bone in your black beetle body. If all I have heard be true, you'll have to account for—


Cribbs.

  [Rising, R.] You'll rue this, young man, if there's any law in the land. A plain case of assault and battery. I'll put you in jail. Predicaments, premunires, fifa's and fieri facias. I'll put you between stone walls. [Exit, blustering, R.


William.

  Put me between stone walls! If you'd have been put between two posts with a cross-beam long ago, you'd had your due, old land-shark. You stay here, darling Agnes, till I come back. Fiery faces, and predicaments! If I can get you near enough to a horse-pond, I'll cool your fiery face, I'll warrant. [Exit, R.

AGNES, scattering flowers and singing.

"They lived down in the valley,
Their house was painted red,
And every day the robin came
To pick the crumbs of bread."

But the grass does not wither when they die. I will sit down till I hear the bells that are far off, for then, I think of his words. Who says he did not love me? It was a good character he wanted of the parson. A girl out of place, is like an old man out of his grave. [Bells chime piano.] They won't ask me to their merry-makings, now, though I washed my best calico in the brook.

"Walk up young man, there's a lady here,
With jewels in her hair."

[Suddenly clasps her hands and screams.] Water, water! hear him, oh, hear him cry for water; quick! he'll turn cold again! his lips are blue; water, water! [Exit, frantically, R.