SCENE I.--The Street before DON JEROME'S House.
Enter LOPEZ, with a dark lantern.
Lop. Past three o'clock!--Soh! a notable hour for one of my regular disposition, to be
strolling like a bravo through the streets of Seville! Well, of all services, to serve a young
lover is the hardest.--Not that I am an enemy to love; but my love and my master's differ
strangely.--Don Ferdinand is much too gallant to eat, drink, or sleep:--now my love gives
me an appetite--then I am fond of dreaming of my mistress, and I love dearly to toast
her.--This cannot be done without good sleep and good liquor: hence my partiality to a
feather- bed and a bottle. What a pity, now, that I have not further time, for reflections!
but my master expects thee, honest Lopez, to secure his retreat from Donna Clara's
window, as I guess.--[Music without.] Hey! sure, I heard music! So, so! Who have we
here? Oh, Don Antonio, my master's friend, come from the masquerade, to serenade my
young mistress, Donna Louisa, I suppose: so! we shall have the old gentleman up
presently.--Lest he should miss his son, I had best lose no time in getting to my post.
Enter DON ANTONIO, with MASQUERADERS and music.
Tell me, my lute, can thy soft strain
So gently speak thy master's pain?
So softly sing, so humbly sigh,
That, though my sleeping love shall know
Who sings--who sighs below,
Her rosy slumbers shall not fly?
Thus, may some vision whisper more
Than ever I dare speak before.
I. Mas. Antonio, your mistress will never wake, while you sing so dolefully; love, like a
cradled infant, is lulled by a sad melody.
Don Ant. I do not wish to disturb her rest.
I. Mas. The reason is, because you know she does not regard you enough to appear, if
you awaked her.