So in that lucky Play of the London Cuckolds, not to recite Particulars. And in that good Comedy of Sir Courtly Nice, the Taylor to the young Lady in the fam'd Sir Fopling Dorimont and Bellinda, see the very Words in Valentinian, see the Scene between the Court Bawds.
Society women were thieves. The men were bawds, the girls were Lesbian. And all these things happened in the highest society: the society of rich people the only society that mattered. For that made it possible to offer the patrons of the theater damaged goods under cover of the delights of luxury. So tricked out, it was displayed in the market, to the joy of old gentlemen and young women.
But there it was, love, disorganizing men's and women's lives, driving toward destruction and death, turning topsy-turvy everything that was sensible and considerate, making bawds or suicides out of virtuous women, and scoundrels and murderers out of men who had always been clean and square. For the first time in his life Daylight lost his nerve. He was badly and avowedly frightened.
He had worked sufficiently in the bad towns of the South Welsh coast and had had an initiation into the lower-living parts of Birmingham and London to be skeptical about the existence of these poor, deluded virgins, lured from their humble respectable homes and thrust by Shakespearean procuresses, bawds, and bullies into an impure life.
"Nay, boy, I will bring thee to the bawds and roysters At Billingsgate, feasting with claret-wine and oysters; From thence shoot the Bridge, child, to the Cranes in the Vintry, And see there the gimblets how they make their entry." Of course Pepys was acquainted with the house. He had, indeed, a savage memory of one meal under its roof.
"The last battering engines," says he, "are philters, amulets, charms, images, and such unlawful meanes: if they cannot prevail of themselves by the help of bawds, panders, and their adherents, they will fly for succour to the devil himself. I know there be those that denye the devil can do any such thing, and that there is no other fascination than that which comes by the eyes.
If, despite all our safeguards of law and the restraining force of religion, society becomes more hopelessly corrupt; if, with our advancing civilization, courtesans increase in number; if, with our boasted progress in education and the arts, women of alleged respectability grow less chary of their charms if the necessities of poverty and the luxury of wealth alike breed brazen bawds and multiply cuckolds it is a fair inference that there is something radically wrong with our social system.
A third invention was the erecting of a whispering-office for the public good and ease of all such as are hypochondriacal or troubled with the cholic, as likewise of all eavesdroppers, physicians, midwives, small politicians, friends fallen out, repeating poets, lovers happy or in despair, bawds, privy-counsellors, pages, parasites and buffoons, in short, of all such as are in danger of bursting with too much wind.
Atkinson, "do this colonel and his lady live, as it is called, well together?" "If you mean to ask," cries Amelia, "whether they are a very fond couple, I must answer that I believe they are not." "I have been told," says Mrs. Atkinson, "that there have been instances of women who have become bawds to their own husbands, and the husbands pimps for them." "Fie upon it!" cries Amelia.
When menstuous she bawds; when clean she whores; * And all her time bawd or adulteress is." And a tale is related of the There was in times of yore and in ages long gone before, a virtuous woman among the children of Israel, who was pious and devout and used every day to go out to the place of prayer, first entering a garden, which adjoined thereto, and there making the minor ablution.