ABSTRACT

Costume Snobbington. Colored morning gown, black small clothes, white stockings, slippers, white night-cap.

Stranger. Brown body coat, plaid (black and white) trousers, blue waistcoat.

(A bedroom in a Lodging House, with a large window, c. commanding a view of the opposite house. On one side a tent bed, on the other a fireplace with coal scuttle and clotheshorse, near it an easy chair, table with candles, newspapers, etc.,etc. Snobbington discovered asleep in a dressing gown: a violent knocking at the opposite house.) Snob. (Waking.) Hello! what the deuce is that? Come in-(Pause.) Nobody! I fancy I fell

asleep over the newspaper, and have been dreaming in my easy chair. A bad thing to sleep in one’s chair-spoils one’s rights rest; and when a man’s rest’s broke, there’s an end of him. However, since I left my noisy quarters in St. Paul’s Churchyard, and took lodgings here in the quiet, rural retirement of Somers Town, I hav’n’t had much to complain of. (Stretching and yawning.) If that deuced debate hadn’t made me so drowsy, I should have been in bed these two hours. (Winds up his watch.) And now to make myself amends. (Blows out one candle, and removes the other to the bedside.) I’ll step into bed, and (Turns down the clothes.) make sure of a good night’s rest! (Is about to throw off his dressing gown, when the knock is repeated.) God bless my soul: it made me jump out of my skin! (Knock.) The gentleman’s in a hurry. One would think the house was on fire! (Knock.) This is beyond a joke! (Knock.) A perfect nuisance! (Knock.) A regular pest! I wasn’t aware of having such disorderly neighbours. (Knock.) ’Tis some obstreperous single gentleman returning late from the opera, and locked out by his landlady. (Knock.) If it goes on, I hope I mayn’t be tempted to throw a jug of water out upon his head! I hired these lodgings in a street that called itself “No Thoroughfare,” for the express purpose of living snug, and being sure of my night’s rest, and I call this a regular imposition! I’ll give notice to quit tomorrow morning! (Knocks.) But what’s to become of me for the rest of my quarter? (Goes to window.) The noise is just opposite. (Knock.) I’ll give the fellow my opinion of his conduct. (Throws open the window, and addresses a person in the street.) Pray, sir, do you call this behaving like a gentleman? 1

Stranger. Mind your own business and be hanged to you! Snob. (Aside.) He won’t stand being bullied, that’s a clear case. Suppose I try the effect

of a little neighborly expostulation? (Cajolingly.) But don’t you think, my dear sir, you could manage to knock a little more softly?