David Bruce: Ben Jonson’s THE DEVIL IS AN ASS: A Retelling — Act 4, Scene 4

— 4.4 —

Fitzdottrel, Mrs. Frances Fitzdottrel, andPug walked over to them.

“I am your servant, madam,” Fitzdottrel said.

Wittipol whispered to Manly, “How are you now, friend? Offended that I have found your haunt here?”

Manly whispered back, “No, but I am wondering at your strangely dressed venture here.”

“My purpose is to show you what they are whom you so pursue,” Wittipol whispered.

He intended to say things that would encourage Lady Tailbush, whom Manly was pursuing, and her friends to expose themselves as bad people.

Manly, who disliked Everill and Merecraft — two friends or associates of Lady Tailbush — whispered back, “I think it will prove a medicine against marriage to know their manners.”

“Stay and profit, then,” Wittipol whispered.

Merecraft said to Wittipol (the Spanish lady), “This is the lady, madam, whose prince has brought her here to be instructed.”

Supposedly, she would be instructed in the manners of a higher social class than her and her husband’s.

Merecraft presented Mrs. Frances Fitzdottrelto Wittipol (the Spanish lady).

“Will it please you to sit with us, lady?” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) asked.

Referring to Wittipol (the Spanish lady), Merecraft said to Fitzdottrel, “That’s the lady-president.”

“She is a goodly woman!” Fitzdottrel said.

“Goodly” meant both 1) good-looking and 2) large.

“I cannot see the ring, though,” Fitzdottrel added.

“Sir, she has it,” Merecraft said.

Continuing her earlier conversation with Wittipol (the Spanish lady), Lady Tailbush said, “But, madam, these are very feeble reasons for being against the use of makeup.”

Wittipol (the Spanish lady) replied, “Therefore, I urged, madam, that the new complexion now to come forth in the name of Your Ladyship’s fucus had no ingredient —”

“But those I dare to eat, I assure you,” Lady Tailbush said.

“So do they in Spain,” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said.

“Sweet madam, be so liberal to give us the ingredients of some of your Spanish fucuses,” Lady Tailbush said.

“They are infinite, madam,” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said.

Many ingredients were used in Spanish makeup.

“So I hear,” Lady Tailbush said.

Wittipol (the Spanish lady) began to list the many ingredients. Lady Tailbush knew what some of them were and pretended to know what the others were. Readers are advised to do the same.

Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said, “They have water of gourds, water of radish, the white beans, flowers of glass [powdered glass], powdered thistles, rosmarine [rosemary], raw honey, mustard-seed, and improperly baked doughy bread, the crumbs of bread, goat’s milk, and whites of eggs, camphor, and lily roots, the fat of swans, marrow of veal, white pigeons, and pine-kernels, the seeds of nettles, purslane [a kind of herb], and hare’s gall, lemons, thin-skinned —”

Lady Eitherside interrupted, “How Her Ladyship has studied all excellent things!”

Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said, “These are only ordinary ingredients, madam. No, the true rarities are the alvagada[white lead] and argentata [white ceruse] of Queen Isabella!”

“Yes, what are their ingredients, gentle madam?” Lady Tailbush asked.

Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said, “Your allum scagliola [flaked gypsum], or pol di pedra[rock alum], and zuccarino[sugar paste]; turpentine of Abezzo [pitch-pine sap], washed in nine waters; soda di levanter[sodium carbonate], or your fern ashes; benjamin di gotta[a tree resin], grasso di serpe[snake’s fat],porcelletto marino[sturgeon]; oils of lentisco[mastic gum], zucche[turnip], mugia[a kind of fish]make the admirable varnish for the face and give the right luster; but two drops rubbed on with a piece of scarlet make a lady of sixty look at sixteen. But, above all, the water of the white hen, of the Lady Estifania’s!”

“Oh, yes, that same, good madam, I have heard of,” Lady Tailbush said. “How is it done?”

Wittipol (the Spanish lady) replied, “Madam, you take your hen, pluck it, and skin it, and cleanse it of the innards. Then chop it, bones and all; add to four ounces of carravicins, pipitas, soap of Cyprus, make the decoction, and strain it. Then distill it, and keep it in your galley-pot [apothecary’s jar] well sealed. Three drops will preserve skin from wrinkles, warts, spots, moles, blemish, or sun-burnings, and keep the skin in decimo sexto, forever bright and smooth as any mirror; and indeed, it is called the virgin’s milk for the face, oglio reale. A ceruse that neither cold or heat will hurt, when mixed with oil of myrrh, the red gillyflower called cataputia, and flowers of rovisticomakes the best muta, or dye, of the whole world.”

Wittipol, of course, was satirizing the making of beauty products. Keeping “the skin in decimo sexton” sounds as if the beauty product would keep the skin looking like that of a 16-year-old girl, but in decimo sextonactually refers to a small book whose leaves are each one-sixteenth of a full sheet of paper.

“Dear madam, will you let us be familiar?” Lady Tailbush asked. “Shall we be friends?”

Wittipol (the Spanish lady) replied, “I am Your Ladyship’s servant.”

Merecraft asked Fitzdottrel, “How do you like her?”

“She is admirable!” Fitzdottrel said. “But still I cannot see the ring.”

He was mistrustful about his ring.

Ready to confess that he had been conned out of the ring, Pug said, “Sir!”

Hearing Pug, Merecraft said to himself, “I must deliver the ring, or everything will be ruined. This fool Fitzdottrel is so mistrustful.”

He said to Wittipol (the Spanish lady), “Madam —”

He surreptitiously handed over the ring and whispered, “Sir, wear this ring, and please know that it was sent to you by Fitzdottrel’s wife. And be sure to give her thanks.”

He then whispered to Pug, “Don’t dwindle, sir. Bear up.”

“I thank you, sir,” Pug, who had witnessed the handing over of the ring, said.

“But for the manner of Spain!” Lady Tailbush said. “Sweet madam, let us be bold, now we are friends. Are all the ladies there in the fashion?”

“None but grandees, madam, of the clasped train, which may be worn at length, too, or like this, upon my arm,” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said.

“And do they all wear cioppinos?” Lady Tailbush asked.

Cioppinoswere soles that were worn under shoes to add height.

“Yes, if they are dressed in punto, madam,” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said.

“In punto” meant “in their best.”

“Gilt as those are, madam?” Lady Tailbush asked.

Wittipol (the Spanish lady), who was wearing golden soles, replied, “Of goldsmith’s work, madam, and set with diamonds; and their Spanish pumps of perfumed leather.”

“Pumps” are shoes.

“I should think it hard to walk in them, madam,” Lady Tailbush said.

“At first it is, madam,” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said.

“Do you ever fall in them?” Lady Tailbush asked.

“Never,” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) replied.

“I swear, I should fall six times an hour!” Lady Eitherside said.

“But you have men at hand always to help you if you fall?” Lady Tailbush said.

“Only one, madam — the guarda-duennas, who is such a little old man as this man is,” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said, pointing to Trains.

“Alas!” Lady Eitherside said. “He can do nothing! This man!”

“Let me tell you, madam,” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said. “I saw in the court of Spain once a lady fall in the King’s sight. She was stretched out on the ground, and there she lay, flat spread as an umbrella, with the hoop of her petticoat cracked here.” — He pointed to a place on the hoop of the petticoat he was wearing. — “No man dared reach out a hand to help her, till the guarda-duennas came. A guarda-duennais the only person allowed to touch a lady there; and he only by this finger.”

“Haven’t they any servants, madam, there?” Lady Eitherside asked. “Haven’t they any friends?”

“An escudero or so, madam, who waits upon them in another coach, at a distance, and when they walk, or dance, nearby holds a handkerchief, and never presumes to touch them,” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said.

An escuderois a Spanish squire.

“This is scurvy!” Lady Eitherside said. “And a forced gravity — an unnatural formality! I do not like it. I like our own much better.”

“It is more French and courtly, ours,” Lady Tailbush said.

“And tastes more of liberty,” Lady Eitherside said. “We may have our dozen of visitors at once make love to us.”

This kind of making love was flirting — mostly. Perhaps.

“And in front of our husbands!” Lady Tailbush said.

“Husband?” Lady Eitherside said. “As I am honest, Tailbush, I think that if nobody should love me but my poor husband, I would just hang myself.”

“Fortune forbid, wench, that so fair a neck should have so foul a necklace as a noose!” Lady Tailbush said.

“What I said is true, as I am handsome!” Lady Eitherside said.

Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said to Mrs. Frances Fitzdottrel, “I received, lady, a token from you, which I would not be so rude as to refuse, it being your first remembrance — gift to remember you by — to me.”

Seeing the ring, Fitzdottrel whispered to Merecraft, “Oh, I am satisfied now!”

Merecraft whispered back, “Do you see the ring, sir?”

“But since you come to know me nearer and better, lady, I’ll beg the honor that you will wear it for me,” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said. “It must be so.”

Wittipol (the Spanish lady) gavethe ring toMrs. Frances Fitzdottrel.

Mrs. Frances Fitzdottrel said to herself, “Surely I have heard this voice before.”

Merecraft whispered to Wittipol (the Spanish lady), “What are you doing, sir?”

“Would you have me be mercenary?” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said. “We’ll recompense it soon, in something else.”

He meant that Merecraft would soon be able to get money from Fitzdottrel in some other way.

Merecraft and Trains exited.

“I do not love to be gulled, even in a trifling matter,” Fitzdottrel said, satisfied now that he saw the ring. “Wife, do you hear? You’re come into the school, wife, where you may learn — I know — anything! How to be fine, or fair, or great, or proud, or whatever you want, indeed, wife; here it is taught. And I am glad that you may not say, another day, when honors come upon you, you lacked means.”

He then let his wife know about his costs: “I have done my parts. Today I have been at fifty pounds charge, first, for a ring to get you entered here where you can learn the manners of this social class. Then I left my new play to wait upon you here, to see your entry into this society confirmed, so that I may say, both to my own eyes and ears — senses, you are my witness — she has enjoyed all helps that could be had, for love, or money —”

Mrs. Frances Fitzdottrel finished the sentence for him: “— to make a fool of her.”

“Wife, that’s your malice, the wickedness of your nature to interpret your husband’s kindness thus,” Fitzdottrel said. “But I’ll not stop trying always to do good despite your depraved disposition. Take note of it.Bend this stubborn will of yours; be great in society.”

Lady Tailbush asked Wittipol (the Spanish lady), “Good madam, whom do the Spanish grandees use in carrying messages?”

“They commonly use their slaves, madam,” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said.

“And does Your Ladyship think that so good, madam?” Lady Tailbush asked.

“No, indeed, madam,” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said. “In such matters I prefer the fashion of England by far. I prefer the use of your young delicate page, or discreet usher, to carry messages.”

“And I go with Your Ladyship in opinion directly for your gentleman-usher,” Fitzdottrel said. “There’s not a finer officer who goes on ground.”

“If he is made and broken in to his place, once,” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said.

“I presuppose him to be so,” Fitzdottrel said.

“And they are fitter managers, too, sir, but I would have them called our escuderos,” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said.

“Good,” Fitzdottrel said.

“Let’s say that I would send to Your Ladyship who, I presume, has gathered all the dear secrets to know how to make pastillosof the Duchess of Braganza, coquettas, almojavanas, mantecadas, alcorças, mustaccioli,” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said.

All of the foreign words were for various kinds of sweets.

Wittipol (the Spanish lady) continued, “Or say it were the peladore [depilatory]of Isabella, or balls [pills] against the itch, or aqua nanfa[orange water], or oil of jessamine [jasmine] for gloves of the Marquess Muja. Or for the head, and hair; why, these are offices —”

Fitzdottrel interrupted, “— fit for a gentleman, not a slave.”

Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said, “They only might ask for yourpiveti, aka Spanish coal, an aromatic substance, to burn, and sweeten a room; but the arcane secrets of ladies’ cabinets —”

Fitzdottrel interrupted, “— should be elsewhere trusted.”

He then said to Wittipol (the Spanish lady), “You’re much about the truth — you’re absolutely right.”

He then said, “Sweet honored ladies, let me fall in with you.”

He walked into the midst of the ladies and said, “I have my female wit, as well as my male wit. And I know what suits a lady of spirit, or a woman of fashion!”

By saying that he had “my female wit, as well as my male wit,” Fitzdottrel was identifying himself as a womanish man, something that many people in this society disliked.

Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said, “And you would have your wife be a lady of spirit, or a woman of fashion!”

“Yes, madam,” Fitzdottrel replied. “I would have her be airy, somewhat light — not to plain dishonesty, I mean, but somewhat on this side.”

A “light” woman was a promiscuous woman. Fitzdottrel wanted his wife to be flirtatious enough to fit in with this society, but he did not want her to cuckold him.

“I understand you, sir,” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said.

He then said, “He has reason, ladies.”

Just that morning, Wittipol had spoken to Fitzdottrel’s wife and attempted to persuade her to commit adultery with him.

He kicked at a rush lying on the floor and said, “I’ll not give this rush for any lady who cannot be honest within a thread.”

A rush is a stalk or a leaf from plants called, yes, rushes. Rushes were often strewn on the floor. Wittipol was saying that he would not give a rush, which is something worthless, for a woman who did not know what she could get away with — that is, for a woman who could flirt and flirt and perhaps do more than flirt yet keep her reputation.

He was also referencing the rush mat that lay between him and Mrs. Frances Fitzdottrel that morning.

Lady Tailbush said, “Yes, madam, and yet venture as far for the other, in her reputation —”

Wittipol (the Spanish lady) interrupted, “— as can be.”

Sneaky women could keep their reputations, yet still do many, many things that respectable women ought not to do.

Wittipol (the Spanish lady) listed some of those things:

“Coach it to the resort town of Pimlico.

“Dance the scandalous dance called the saraband.

“Hear bawdy language and talk bawdy language.

“Laugh as loudly as an alarm clock.

“Squeak, spring, do anything —”

Squeaking could be done in bed.

The verb “spring” has some meanings that could refer to the act of sex or what can follow the act of sex: 1) moving energetically and changing position, 2) undergoing flushing of the skin, 3) causing water to rise (sweating), 4) being covered with water (semen), and 5) suffering the spreading of a rumor.

Or perhaps “squeak, spring” simply meant “sing, dance.”

Lady Eitherside interrupted, “— in young company, madam.”

Lady Tailbush added, “Or before gallants. If they are splendid, or lords, a woman is bound to do so.”

“I say so, ladies,” Fitzdottrel said. “It is civility to deny us nothing.”

Pug, the devil from Hell, admired Fitzdottrel. He said to himself, “You talk of a university! Why, Hell is a grammar school compared to this!”

Lady Eitherside said, “But then she must not lose a look on stuffs, or cloth, madam.”

“Stuffs” refers to materials for dresses, but readers may be forgiven for at first thinking that it refers to male parts that can be stuffed into lady parts.

“Nor no coarse fellow,” Lady Tailbush said.

“She must be guided, madam, by the clothes he wears, and the company he is in,” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said. “Whom to salute, how far —”

Fitzdottrel interrupted, “I have told her — my wife —this. And I have told her that bawdy language, too, upon the point, is in itself as civil a discourse —”

Wittipol (the Spanish lady) interrupted, “— as any other affair of flesh, whatever.”

To be a member of this particular crowd of people, you needed to speak bawdily and flirt outrageously, and perhaps do worse things. Fitzdottrel wanted his wife to be a member of this particular crowd of people.

Fitzdottrel continued, “But she will never be capable; she is not so much as coming, madam.”

This can be interpreted in two ways:

1) “But she will never be capable of understanding that; she is not so much as coming around to understand that, madam.”

2) “But she will never be capable of having such evil and effrontery; she is not so much as cumming, madam.”

Fitzdottrel continued, “I don’t know how she loses all her opportunities with hoping to be forced.”

The word “forced” means “raped,” but lesser kinds of force may include “seduced” or “persuaded.”

Fitzdottrel was a jealous husband who was afraid that Wittipol would seduce his wife — and afraid that his wife wouldn’t mind being seduced — and so he probably meant that he couldn’t understand why his wife did not want to fit in with this particular crowd of people when she, herself, would not mind being seduced.

Fitzdottrel continued, “I’ve entertained a gentleman, a younger brother, here” — he pointed to Pug — “whom I would like to breed up as her escudero, in anticipation of some expectations that I have, and she’ll not countenance him.”

“What’s his name?” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) asked.

“His name is Devil, and he’s from Derbyshire,” Fitzdottrel said.

Because of Pug’s name, Lady Eitherside said, “Bless us from him!”

This meant: May God protect us from him.

“Devil?” Lady Tailbush said. “Call him De-vile, sweet madam.”

“Call him whatever you please, ladies,” Mrs. Frances Fitzdottrel said.

“De-vile’s a prettier name!” Lady Tailbush said.

“And the name sounds, I think, as if it came in with William the Conqueror in the Norman Conquest,” Lady Eitherside said.

Referring to Lady Tailbush and Lady Eitherside, a disgusted Manly said, “They are worse than smocks — prostitutes! What things they are! That nature should be at leisure ever to make people like them! My wooing is at an end. I will no longer woo Lady Tailbush.”

Indignant, he exited.

Referring to Pug, Wittipol (the Spanish lady) asked, “What can he do?”

“Let’s hear him,” Lady Eitherside said.

“Can he manage?” Lady Tailbush asked.

One meaning of “manage” is “perform,” perhaps meaning sexually. Another meaning of “manage” could be “manage an affair” — that is, be a good go-between for a lady and her lover.

“If it would please you to test him and ask him questions, ladies, do so,” Fitzdottrel said.

He ordered, “Stand forth, Devil.”

Pug said to himself, “Was all this but the preface to my torment?”

“Come, let Their Ladyships see your honors,” Fitzdottrel said. “Let them see you bow.”

Pug bowed.

“Oh, he makes a wicked leg,” Lady Eitherside said.

A “wicked leg” is a badly performed bow.

“As wicked as ever I saw!” Lady Tailbush said.

“Fit for a Devil,” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said.

“Good madam, call him De-vile,” Lady Tailbush requested.

They began a catechism — a question-and-answer test — of Pug.

Wittipol (the Spanish lady) asked Pug, “De-vile, what property is there most required in your opinion, now, while in service as a Spanish squire — an escudero?”

Pug hesitated.

Fitzdottrel asked him, “Why don’t you speak?”

Pug then answered Wittipol (the Spanish lady), “Most required is asettled discreet pace, madam.”

Wittipol (the Spanish lady) replied, “Most required, I think, is a barren head, sir, mountain-like, to be exposed to the cruelty of weathers —”

Many servants in the position of squire were required to be bareheaded. High mountains are bareheaded in the sense that trees will not grow above a certain elevation.

“Aye, for his valley is beneath the waste, madam, and to be fruitful there, it is sufficient,” Fitzdottrel said.

According to Fitzdottrel, Pug’s head was barren — a waste. Below Pug’s waist was a valley, but it was a valley in back. What came out there would be fruitful if used to fertilize fruit trees.

Fitzdottrel then said to Pug, “Dullness upon you! Couldn’t you hit this?”

“Hit this” meant “hit on the right answer.”

Fitzdottrel hit Pug, who began, “Good sir —”

Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said, “If he had hit on the right answer, then he would have had no barren head! You torment him too much, indeed, sir.”

Fitzdottrel said to Pug, “I must walk with a French stick, like an old verger, on account of you.”

A French stick is a walking stick, and a verger is a public official who carried a rod as a symbol of his authority.

Fitzdottrel believed that because of Pug’s ignorance, he had to carry a walking stick so he could use it to beat Pug.

Pug quietly prayed to Satan, “Oh, chief, call me back to Hell again, and free me!”

“Do you murmur now?” Fitzdottrel asked Pug.

“Not I, sir,” Pug replied.

“What do you take to be, Master De-vile, the height of your employment in the true perfect service of the escudero?” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) asked Pug.

Again, Pug hesitated.

“When will you answer?” Fitzdottrel asked. “What do you answer?”

Pug answered Wittipol (the Spanish lady), “To be able, madam, first to inquire about and then to report the efficacy of any lady’s medicine, using sweet phrases.”

Some kinds of medicines are laxatives. Pug would be asking ladies whether their laxatives had worked.

Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said, “Yes, that’s an act of elegance and importance. But what is above that? What is truer and more perfect service than that?”

“Oh, I wish that I had a goad to use on Pug!” Fitzdottrel said.

“To find a good cutter of ladies’ corns,” Pug said.

Insulted, Lady Tailbush said, “He can get out right now!”

“Most barbarous!” Lady Eitherside said.

“Why did you give this answer, now?” Fitzdottrel said to Pug. “On purpose to discredit me? You damned Devil!”

Pug said to himself, “Sure, if I am not yet a damned devil, I shall be. All my days in Hell were holy-days compared to this!”

“This is labor lost, madam,” Lady Tailbush said.

“He’s a dull fellow of no intellectual capacity,” Lady Eitherside said.

“And of no discourse,” Lady Tailbush added. “Oh, if my Ambler would have been here!”

“Yes, madam,” Lady Eitherside said. “When you talk about Ambler, you talk about a man. Where is there such another?”

Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said, “Master De-vile, suppose that one of my ladies here had a fine bitch, and she wanted to employ you to go forth to entreat about a convenient match for her.”

In other words, suppose that one of the ladies here had a female dog and was seeking a mate for it.

Wittipol (the Spanish lady) continued, “What would you observe that would help you to find a fine mate for it?”

“The color, and the size, madam,” Pug said.

“And nothing else?” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) asked.

“The moon, you calf, the moon!” Fitzdottrel said.

He was calling Pug a mooncalf, aka a monster.

“Yes, the moon, and the astrologicalsign of the bitch,” Pug said.

“Yes,” Lady Tailbush said, “and recipes for aphrodisiacs.”

“Then when the puppies came, what would you do?” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) asked.

“Get their nativities — horoscopes — cast,” Pug answered.

“This is well,” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said. “What else?”

“Consult the almanac-man about which would be the smallest? And which would be the cleanliest?” Pug answered.

“And which the silentest?” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) asked.

Lady Tailbush said, “This is well, madam!”

Wittipol (the Spanish lady) asked Pug, “And what would you do while she were pregnant with puppies?”

Pug answered, “Walk her outside, and air her every morning.”

“Very good!” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said. “And be industrious to kill her fleas?”

“Yes,” Pug said.

“He will make a pretty student,” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said.

Pug said to himself, “Who, coming from Hell, could look for such catechizing? The devil is an ass. I do acknowledge it.”

Which devil? Possibly, Pug himself. He had acted foolishly in wishing to leave Hell in order to visit earth.

Fitzdottrel, impressed by Wittipol (the Spanish lady), said to himself, “The top of woman! All her sex in abstract! I love each syllable that falls from her!”

Referring to Pug, Lady Tailbush requested, “Good madam, give me permission to go aside with him and test him a little.”

“Do, and I’ll withdraw, madam, with this fair lady — and teach her the while,” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said.

Lady Tailbush said to Pug, “Come with me, sir.”

Pug prayed quietly, “Dear chief, relieve me, or I perish!”

“Lady, we’ll follow you two,” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said.

Lady Tailbush and Lady Eitherside exited with Pug.

Wittipol (the Spanish lady) asked Fitzdottrel, “You are not jealous of me being with your wife, sir?”

Because Fitzdottrel thought that Wittipol (the Spanish lady) was a woman, he replied, “Oh, madam! You shall see.”

He said to his wife, “Stay, wife.”

Mrs. Frances Fitzdottrel had disliked the company and she had disliked the teasing and beating of Pug, and she wanted to leave and go to her home. She had no desire to be taught to behave like Lady Tailbush and Lady Eitherside.

Fitzdottrel said to Wittipol (the Spanish lady), “Behold, I give her up here absolutely to you. She is your own. Do with her what you will.”

He put his wife’s arm in the arm of Wittipol (the Spanish lady).

Using a metaphor from metalworking, Fitzdottrel added, “Melt, cast, and form her as you shall think good. Set any stamp on her. I’ll receive her from you as a new thing, by your own standard!”

He exited.

“Well, sir!” Wittipol (the Spanish lady) said.

Wittipol (the Spanish lady) and Mrs. Frances Fitzdottrel exited.

***

Copyright by Bruce D. Bruce; All Rights Reserved

***

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