01x01 - Episode 1

Episode transcript for the TV movie "The Scandalous Lady W". Aired August 17th, 2015.
"The Scandalous Lady W" details the life of Lady Seymour Worsley, who ran off with her lover, Captain Maurice George Bisset in November 1781. As the law forbade women from initiating divorce proceedings, Seymour had hoped her elopement would force her husband into taking this step – however, her scheme backfired catastrophically. Instead of issuing proceedings for divorce, the outraged baronet set out to sue his friend Captain Bisset for criminal conversation, or adultery. Lady Worsley exposed all the sordid secrets of her marriage in court, thus damning herself as being a "possession" without value. The jury agreed. Though they found in favour of her husband, they awarded him just one shilling in damages.
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01x01 - Episode 1

Post by bunniefuu »

(He coughs)

You wish to speak to me.

I will grant your wish, on the condition that you leave England at once... and remain abroad in France for four years.

You would send me into exile?

Why do you complain so?

I have lost everything.

And only you?


(Carriage wheels rattle)

(Horse whinnies)

(Carriage clatters)

I love you, Captain Bisset.


Where is Lady Worsley?

Where is she?

(Baby cries)


They say she's worth 100,000 to the man she marries.

I doubt there's a wealthier, more eligible heiress in the land.

(They laugh)

You are beautiful, madam.

You are kind, sir.

I have always believed, when I meet my match, I shall know it.

I wish to marry for love.

I have had many offers, sir...

I'm sure you have!

And when you marry, you wish to marry only for love? - Yes.

Well, then, why not marry a s*ab boy, or a footman?

Perhaps I will, sir.

A gentleman's title and connections are plainly no more than a trifle, as far as Miss Fleming is concerned! LAUGHTER If I am one day ... and before too long ... to promise myself to another, well... then I would like him to pledge his love and undying devotion to me, for I will marry for no less.

Yes, you have impressed the point upon me.

What is it you wish for in a wife, sir?

When I marry, one day ... and before too long ...

(She giggles)

I must know in my heart that I can trust my wife to do her duty.

I would do the bidding of any man I loved.

I am sure, sir, you will meet your match soon.

And what man, except a fool, would not love you, Seymour?

Seymour's not home. What time did she leave?

She left with Captain Bisset just after you did, sir.

Lady Worsley!

(Hammers on door)

Where's that scoundrel's lodgings?



Upon your honour, can you say she is not in your house?

Sir, she is not in this house.

She was here, sir ... with Captain Bisset, but they was gone off, about five this morning.

I did not see her, sir.

They have eloped.

We have been wed for three months, Richard.

Are you weary?



You are my brother starling, my love, my one.

I am yours, sir, to do with as you please.

Would you not wish for me to bear you a son?

Seymour, I love you.

I am convulsed with passion for you.

How many unspoken desires toward you?

Might I speak them?

(They giggle)

You would not mind?

If it pleases you, then...

Oh, my dear, it would please me greatly.

(She giggles)

My mother did not tell me that playing rantum-scantum would be thus.

It did not please you?

It was strange, but not unpleasant.

Seymour, I'm sure before long, they will call me to serve His Majesty as Privy Counsellor.

Perhaps it is my destiny that I might one day be Prime Minister.

Well, if one day you are, I shall be very proud of you.

You will be wreathed in the golden light that shines upon you from my honours and titles.

I dare say when I achieve a rank within the Royal household, I shall be in court most of the time.

And I shall be permitted to accompany you?

When it is my wish.

Madam, our marriage and our frolics are for us and us alone.

Of course they are.

I must know I can rely on you.

Of course you can, Richard.

(Footsteps approach)

Where is she?


Where is she, damn you!

My mistress made me take an oath on my life not to say.

Let me be plain, madam.

If you do not answer me truthfully, this moment... you will be discharged from my service without a reference.

You will be thrown out on to the street!

I know not where they are ... only that they are in London.

I was awoken from my sleep at the midnight hour...


.. and I was instructed to bring the child to Lady Worsley at Viscount Deerhurst's home.

Right. You are to come with me.

We've done it, George. I'm free of him!

Now then, Seymour ... I will never let you down.

The world will take me for a scoundrel, but my heart is in your hand ... and I am a sl*ve to your quim.

(She giggles)

We will take breakfast privately ... and a bedchamber for my husband and I.

(Gasps and laughter)

(Knocks at door)

Married, my arse!

Forgive us, ladies. We were resting from our travels.

Do not fret, my dear. He'll never find us here.

I will be at ease when my Jane is with me.

All will be well with the child.

Don't call her "the child". - Shh.

Make up the bed chambers and be gone.

Lady Worsley is unhappy.

I'm sorry to hear that's so.

Many ladies of rank are wont to selfishness.

Lady Worsley is a magnificent woman ... if I may say so.

Yes, you may.

You may.

Nay, never would I have known that a woman of breeding could be so wanton and so desires f*cking.

Sir... that is most extraordinary.

She says it is love that fuels her passions.


I jest not, my lord. The respite would be most welcome.

(Deerhurst laughs)

She likes you.

You have my permission to try with her.

(Worsley laughs)

(Deerhurst laughs)

You ask too much of me, sir.

I am your wife and I love you.

It would not touch my love for you, nor yours mine.

Richard, please...

You know, unless you do as I wish, I suffer viciously with the horn colic.

But I don't... - Why will you not do my bidding?

You are my wife.

Are you not satisfied with looking upon me through the keyhole?

No, I'm not.

All I wish for, sir, is to be happy and in love and with my husband.

All I wish for, madam, is that you do my bidding.

You betray my love for you by asking...

It is not betrayal ... it is simply my wish.

You should wish to please me.

I won't.

I won't.

Then as you wish.

(Baby wails)


I've promised Deerhurst that you are game.


Why, I say?


You see, my lord, what hurts me greatly is that she will not even try.

To think, I married a sour-faced prig!

I will be tender, madam.

You are the purest pure.

You are beautiful, madam.

And you are fair handsome, sir ... and that I am grateful.

Your husband is a damned fool.

But, fool such as he is... this is his dearest wish.

(She gasps)

Was Deerhurst not kind to you?

He was very kind indeed, sir.

And yet, you are displeased?


I would not say I was displeased.

Are you happy now?

Yes. Yes.

And if Deerhurst came to play rantum-scantum again, you would not mind?

No, I would not mind, Richard ... if it would make you happy and it would improve our union.

Thank goodness, Deerhurst, it is you.

Forgive my appearance, my dear.

Captain Bisset, I presume.

My Lord.

Is my Mary here with Jane?

Seymour, I'm sorry to bear bad news.

Sir Richard is already in London.

The Right Honourable Viscount Deerhurst.

Mr Farrar, my attorney.

My lord.


So she sent you, we wondered where you were about.

He always was her lap dog.

I'm charged with a message, sir.

Lady Worsley having for some time past received many... slights and inattentions from Sir Richard. - My lord...

Which she could bear no longer.

As she has had for some time past a partiality for Captain Bisset, she has taken the opportunity of availing her self of it.

She is so resolved to abide by it that, in case Sir Richard should force her back again, which as her husband he certainly has the right to do, Lady Worsley wishes you to know, sir, she would do the same again whenever she could.


Common whore.

Well, if that is her ladyship's fixed resolution, perhaps she should give her assistance towards obtaining a divorce.

I believe a divorce is what Lady Worsley wishes for.

There will be no divorce.

Was Jane with him?

Did you see my Mary?

No, I did not.

Perhaps they remain elusive.

Seymour, he was with a lawyer.


A lawyer?

Speak to Richard.

If you wish for a divorce, look him in the eye and ask him for one.

I do not have to do anything Richard bids me to do any more.

I do as I please.

I am happy now.

He knows my wishes, you expressed them. - Seymour, please.

I did my duty to him as his wife and I obliged his every whim.

I will not go to him, sir, he must let ME go.

Lady Worsley must understand she now has a clear choice.

She may return home to us and we undertake to forgive her.

If she does not, there will be a trial and I will prosecute Captain Bisset.

He will pay and she will condemn them both to a life of penury.

I see.

If I may, surely given the... extraordinary intimacy of your friendship with Captain Bisset, you may meet with him and talk with him.

She is my wife and she is mine and mine alone and yet she has been taken from me and f*cked by that villain Bisset.


Furthermore, I will seek compensation in law from that scoundrel.

Compensation for all that he has done to me and the damage he's caused to my rightful property.

In cases of this nature, one would expect to ask for 5,000 in compensation.

I will ask for 20,000.

£20,000, sir?

Why should the devil be left undisturbed? - Richard...

We should ask for 20,000 and then let's see how Captain Bisset likes it.

Richard, litigation will not restore Seymour's affections and it will be as costly for you as well as for the scoundrel Bisset.

It is my wish.

There will be public scrutiny of your private affairs, Richard.

It is my wish, sir.

Well, sir... if it your wish then we must apply our efforts to obtaining proof of adultery.

We must catch them at it, sir.

Sir Richard and Lady Worsley.


(Thank you for becoming my husband.)

I should think you mean to thank me for taking you as my wife.

I meant nothing by it.

You will recall, Seymour, I made a vow to love and cherish and you made a vow to love, cherish and obey.

Forgive me...

I am Mr Bisset. George Bisset.

I'm the new owner of Newton.

You say you heard them screwing?

Yes, I did, sir.

And you kept the sheets as I asked you to.

Yes, I have, Mr Farrar.

Foul state they was in as well.

Well, then...

This is Lady Worsley's riding crop.

See if she'll claim it and give her real name.


Why do you housemaids knock but not await an answer?

My lady, there's a riding crop left for a lady in this house and since there's no other ladies here, may I crave the favour of your name?

A riding crop.

Yes, my lady, a riding crop and some other effects.

Is the person who left that a woman servant with a child?

We're instructed not to part with the crop or any other belongings unless my lady gives her true name first.

Why I am Seymour, Lady Worsley.

Where did you get that from?

'You are insinuated in the criminality.'

Yes, sir.

You are implicated in the desertion of your master... and the wicked plot to abduct the child that is rightfully his.

You have any objection to seeing Lady Worsley again?

No, sir.

My loyalty is to my mistress.

But I understand Sir Richard is my master.


Do you know enough of Captain Bisset... as to be certain of his person if you saw him?

Yes, sir.

Well, then, Miss Sotheby.

'You are to go to Lady Worsley's bedchamber... and if you should see Captain Bisset, you are to tell me.'

(Knock at door)


Why did you not come as I asked?

Madam, I am come by Sir Richard's orders.



You come by Sir Richard's orders?

Yes, madam.

Where is Jane?

The infant is with her father.

But you must bring her to me.

So it's true then, madam.

You know why I am here.

I never believed you would've done it.

Oh, Mary.

You will not see me again, madam.



He will not give up the child.

He means to use Jane as a pawn to try and force your return.

Seymour, you gave your actual name to the housemaids.

Mary has confessed to Richard.

No. No, no.

He'll have me prosecuted.

Richard would never dare put himself and us through the humiliation of the courts.

We have humiliated him!

Hush now.

Did you not mark how my Mary was with me?

If that bitch comes again I'll sh**t her. - You'll do no such thing.

(Baby cries)

Sh, sh, sh.

We have them.


Does it not grieve you, you do not see our daughter?

Dear Seymour, please.

Does it not grieve you, sir?



The infant was of our love begotten, my dear Seymour, is a fact.

Richard took her for his own and now she belongs to him.

A fact, George?

It was you who foolishly asked your woman to bring her.

And it is you that foolishly said we must leave without her.

The child is better off with Richard. - How can you say so?

The scandal will be great. Richard knows it... and he has us by the nutmegs.

We must be patient.

Deerhurst will go to him again.

He will be full of fury if Deerhurst goes to him again.

He will not, George. - If you provoke him further, he may suggest a duel.

(She laughs)

He may.

And I could not refuse.

Oh, my love.

(Door opens)

Sir, what do you mean by this?

Maurice George Bisset.

Who is it that seeks him out?

You are served with a writ from the Court of the King's Bench.

We've been fooled.

He has made a claim for £20,000.

I'll become a bankrupt and live out my days in the Fleet Prison.

I have valued your wise council and your unfailing loyalty but I begin to wonder.

Wonder? Why, Prime Minister?

Sometimes we must accept defeat.

Accept it in its bitter entirety.

You have been wronged and mightily so but every wall has unseen eyes and ears.

What say you, then?

All of London is in an uproar with talk of a cuckold in my government and a whore for a wife!

I take it you are beyond reproach in all these terrible misfortunes.

My reputation will remain intact.

Then good.

I will need every man of mine and every vote.

(She laughs)

We must be married and live as one with our daughter.

But you are already married.

It is my fortune that has acquired all of this. My fortune.

Why should I not determine how I am to live?

We could live as four here.

As moderns, Seymour.

No. No.

It is my dearest wish that you and I and our daughter live as one.

How it is my dearest wish, George.

Mr Farrar.

Mr Wallace.

She'll not be attending, will she?

No, sir, of course not.

All rise.

The Right Honourable Lord Chief Justice Mansfield.

(Court chatters)

(Gavel bangs)

Order! Order! Silence in court!

Do you consent to her attending?

I have no objection, my lord.

Very well, then. We may proceed.

Sir Richard Worsley is a selfless, God-fearing and dutiful public servant of the highest order.

A doting father, a loving and dutiful husband who has been wronged and subject to an outrageous plot.

Sir Richard has a seat in the House of Commons, he is a privy counsellor and governor of the Isle of Wight.

Mr Bisset, as he was commonly known, became friends with the plaintiff at the time of his election to the House of Commons and the greatest intimacy grew between them there after.

Indeed, Sir Richard gave the defendant a commission in his regiment.

The defendant had the confidence and trust of the plaintiff, both in friendship, as neighbours and in military matters until, that is, the unhappy event took place.

(Court chatters)

The court calls Hannah Commander.

(Door opens)

'Did they desire you to prepare any bedchamber?'

'Yes, as near to the dining room as possibly could be, sir.'

And what else do you recall?

Captain Bisset as I didn't know him then for I took him for her ladyship's husband.

He was a scoundrel, sir.

A scoundrel you say?

A proper mutton monger. He give me a crown for my silence, sir.

(Court laughs, gavel bangs)

A mutton monger?

Yes, sir. A mutton monger.

Will you kindly endeavour to speak in respectful English?

I've kept the crown, my lord.

(Court laughs)

And how long did they stay?

For four or five days, sir.

And how did they pass?

As man and wife, sir.

But they was not a man and wife, sir, and the state of the bedchamber, sir, and the bedding, sir.

Had they only one bed?

Yes, my lord.

And they was at it under the sheets when I came into the bedchamber and they was naked, my lord, at one o'clock in the afternoon as well.

How do you know who they were?

Because she answered to the name of Lady Worsley, sir.

It was her.

(Court chatters)

The court calls Mary Sotheby.

Do you solemnly swear by almighty God that the evidence you shall give to the court will be the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth?

I was awoken at midnight, sir, and asked to do my lady's bidding.

That is all.

You were privy and party to this debauchery, madam.

Yes, you were privy and party to the desertion of Sir Richard Worsley and his infant daughter.

I was not, sir.

Pray tell me, how old was the infant Jane at the time of this most heartless desertion?

She was four months old.

And yet you conspired to abduct the infant from her father and her home.

Oh, you appear entirely deficient of any morality.

Or of conscious, or of any loyalty at all to your master.

Why, my lord, these are crocodile tears.

My lady only loves Captain Bisset.

(Court chatters)


And my lady loves her daughter Jane dearly.

Then why, madam, did you lady desert her?

The court calls Captain Leversuch.

Do you recollect Captain Bisset and Lady Worsley at a party together which met at your house the very night of the elopement?

Yes, my lord, I recall it with the utmost clarity.

Captain Bisset played the piano for our entertainment.
(He plays piano)


They make quite a pair, wouldn't you say?

It does your husband much credit that he is no Othello.

They are so dear to me, so very dear to me.

What lady could be more fortunate to have a husband of such distinction and a friend of such devotion to both of us?

And Sir Richard is the best and most generous kind of man.

I dare say I thought no such friendship could exist.

(They laugh)

Oh, I've a terrible migraine.

Ale afflicts me so.

Sir, that is the claret.


He is often afflicted with the migraine and none so often as in the bedchamber.

You are wicked, madam. You are wicked.

Why is it wicked, sir, to laugh and speak the truth?

Pope is a duddering ninny who was fool enough to fall in love with a woman who did not love him and who was far his superior in every respect.

I am familiar with the predicament, sir.

But most cruel.

It is said that Lady Montagu laughed at Pope as he unfolded his heart.

(Sir richard burps)


It is a cold heart that's not moved by the tragic beauty of Pope's two lovers stuck by lightning.

Pope's work does not compare to the verses of Lady Montagu herself.

"The man who feels the dear disease, Forgets himself, neglects to please."

Well, Pope is the greatest poet that's ever lived.

(He laughs)

I know they find me a terrible bore, Mrs Leversuch, but what I am to do but be myself?

(Sir richard laughs)


(He laughs)

I'll see you out.

I cannot spend another week in his company.

Then why do we not leave tonight?

Do you mean it, George?

I do but if you want to go, we must go now.

And what of Jane?

We cannot take the child tonight, the risk is too great.

I cannot leave without her, George. - Then we cannot go.

Listen to reason, Seymour.

If we take the child tonight, he will know that we are leaving and he will never allow that.

What are you two lovebirds twittering over?

We must send word to Mary, she can bring Jane and all my belongings in the morning to us and send word to Deerhurst.

Goodnight, my dears. Goodnight!

And you had no knowledge of this affair?


I heard not a whisper, my lord, of any relationship of that kind between Lady Worsley and Captain Bisset.

And did Sir Richard Worsley know of this adulterous relationship prior to the elopement?

No, none at all, my lord.

He remained quite in the dark as did we all.

Captain Bisset is a deceitful scoundrel and myself and Mrs Leversuch are entirely innocent of any knowledge or involvement in this most sordid elopement.

My lord, far from being ignorant of Lady Worsley's intimate friendship with Captain Bisset, Sir Richard Worsley openly encouraged it, indeed, my lord, intimate relations between a great many gentlemen and ladies of rank in the Southampshire Militia were common knowledge.

(Court laughs)

(Gavel bangs)

Sir... are you truthfully giving evidence to this court that you had no indication at all that Lady Worsley and Captain Bisset were, shall we say, intimate friends?

No, sir.

And if I may say, my lord, I was and remain deeply shocked and alarmed by this whole affair and if I may also say, my lord, Sir Richard and Lady Worsley were very happily married and until she made the acquaintance of Captain Bisset, she always did her husband's bidding.

Thank you, Captain Leversuch, that will be all.

(Court chatters)

How is it just that Richard can paint such a false picture of our marriage?

Something must be done.

Madam, what is to be done?

Captain Bisset is plainly proven to be guilty of adultery.

We have put doubt in the jury's mind as to whether Sir Richard knew that the relations between you were established before the elopement and perhaps... the compensation could be reduced, by half, to 10,000.

We have no means to pay such compensation, sir.

10,000 and George still ends up in the fleet.

And I... will never see my love again.

Where the adultery is proven, the defendant cooperates fully in all of society, that is what is expected.

Now, the scandal is reduced by default.

Why can I not tell the whole truth?


I am not worth £20,000.

No, Lady Worsley...

What if he may prove that I was not worth £20,000 long before I met Captain Bisset?

George would need not confess to anything.

But you would.

How so, madam?

I know what you're considering doing.

Seymour, you have already lost much.

As a consequence of your love affair and your elopement, you have lost your means, your place in society...

You will never see your daughter again, of that I'm certain.

If you choose this path, you may not win. But whatever the outcome... you will be shamed forevermore.

I do not want to lose George.

It will not touch my love for you.

I must have time to think.

What else may I do?

Go to Sir Richard.

Reason with him.

Lady Worsley is here.

What does she want of me?

She wishes to see the child, and if you wished it, speak with you, Sir Richard.

Richard, do you not think it wise to hear her?

(Door opens)

Sir Richard Worsley wishes it to be known to Lady Worsley that the child is not here.

And in any case, if the child were here, Lady Worsley would not be permitted to see the child.

For Lady Worsley has forgone all her maternal rights and Sir Richard is no longer obliged, nor is he disposed to grant them.

Furthermore, Sir Richard wishes it to be known that Lady Worsley's visitation is a further cruel and vicious act perpetrated upon his person and he will inform the Lord Justice in the morning.

I will have you, Richard Worsley!

I will have you for breakfast.

You will see. The whole of London will know what you are!

We must tell the truth.

Then I will do as you wish, Seymour.

Though man is a damn fool.

The defendant is very ready to admit that the plaintiff is entitled to a verdict.

But I will prove to the satisfaction of the jury that the plaintiff is not entitled to £20,000 of compensation.

Lady Worsley is not worth the sum of £20,000.

I will prove this to be a fact, my lord.


The court calls the right honourable Lord Deerhurst.

'Madam, our marriage and our frolics are for us and us alone.'

Of course they are.

I must know that I can rely on you.

Of course you can, Richard.

On what year was your lordship first acquainted with Lady Worsley?

We were introduced by Sir Richard Worsley in the year 1779.


And you became an intimate of hers?

Yes, I was a most intimate friend.

You have had an intimacy of friendship.

But have you had any particularly intimate connection with her?

In the bedchamber.

With your lordship's permission, I decline that question.

It is improper for a gentleman to admit whether he has had many prior and intimate connections with Lady Worsley, sir.



You have no right to be asked that question.

The court calls the right honourable Lord Peterborough.

How did your lordship first make the acquaintance of Lady Worsley?

I was first introduced to her by Sir Richard Worsley at Sadler's Wells.

What about that fly fellow?

How intimate were your relations with the Lady Worsley?

Sir, you may decline that.

Sir, how many a gentleman admit to the most intimate of relations with Lady Worsley?


The court calls the honourable Charles Wyndham, Esquire.

(He pants)

The court calls the right honourable the Marquess of Graham.


(He pants)

The court calls Joseph Bouchier Smith, Esquire.


Man in gallery: Disgrace!

"This indifference, Richard, so often you blame is not owing to nature, to fear or to shame. I hate to be abused and never will accept years of solitude and pitiful neglect."

They are mine, Richard.

They are my most private things.

It's no more than the trifling doggerel of an ungrateful shrew.

Please leave me in peace.


(Judge bangs gavel)

The court calls Dr Osborn.

Dr Osborn, in what condition did you find Lady Worsley?

She had a number of complaints, all of which, I fancy, were the consequence of venereal disease.

(Crowd muttering)

And were you ever employed by Sir Richard for complaints of a similar order, sir?

No, sir, I was not.

In your opinion, sir, did Sir Richard and Lady Worsley lie together as man and wife?

No, sir.

Not with any regularity, no.

And what, then, of the child, Jane?

In my opinion, sir, the child Sir Richard says belongs to him is a bastard.

(Crowd gasp)

The child is a bastard, you say?

(Judge bangs gavel)

Order, I say! Order! Silence in court!

I understood there was Deerhurst and then there were others to take the stand.

26, Seymour?!

I thought we lived as moderns, my love.

As moderns.

I see.

You think me a whore, too.

Forgive me, if I may.

I am Mr Bisset, George Bisset. I am the new owner of Newton.

So, you are Mr Bisset? Pleased to make your acquaintance, sir.

I am Sir Richard Worsley. May I present to you my wife, Lady Worsley?

Mr Bisset, I understand you have been our neighbour here a week, and you have neglected to call upon us.

Forgive me, sir, madam.

I have a card for you and was to deliver it to you tomorrow.

Do you believe this cheeky fellow?

I assure you, it is the truth.

And you are to stand in the by-elections, for Newport?

What of it? - I wish you to know that you will have my vote.

That is all.


Gentlemen, whilst some in Parliament may baulk to call themselves a Tory, I am proud to do so.


It has been an honour to offer myself for you as a candidate for your favour. And gentlemen, know this.

If I should have the honour of being freely elected by you, I shall, when your service requires it, be at your service for ever more.


(They laugh)

I give you, my lady, the honourable member for the seat of Newport in the county of Hampshire.


I am most remiss, my dear. - Richard?

I've been keeping Mr Bisset from you. - Why, Richard!

I wanted him for myself.

I'm sure his talents know no bounds.

I've been thinking of rewarding him, Seymour.


Why, sir, you are too generous.

I think you will look rather dashing, a commissioned officer of the South Hampshire Militia.


(She gasps)

(He gasps)

(She laughs)

I wish it could be so that Richard were away for a month.

So do I.

You are like no other woman I have ever met.

Though some may say that what you do for your husband makes you no more than a common whore. But you are not.

You're just doing your best for him.

You have done your duty.

It is how I have kept my husband happy.

You make me feel as if a new kind of future may exist.

A meeting not just of lovers, but of a new kind of love, based upon liberty, free will.

That we may have a life together, as moderns.

Am I your love?

You are, George.

My true love.

Good. Because you are mine.

I love you, Seymour.

My lord, these 26 lovers are no more than a fiction, concocted by the defendant, Lady Worsley, and her friends.

Not one independent witness has corroborated these implausible tales.

For how much longer will Sir Richard Worsley be tormented in this manner?

Sir, what say you?

My Lord?

Are we to hear any more evidence for the defence?

What is your name?

Mary, madam.

My maid's name is Mary.

'What is your name?'

'Mary Marriott, sir.'


'And you are a bathing woman?'

'Yes, sir.'

Do you know Sir Richard and Lady Worsley?

Yes, I do.

How do you know them?

Lady Worsley came to the bathhouse when they was in Maidstone, sir.

Did she come on her own?

No, sir, she came with Sir Richard and Captain Bisset.

All three, together.

(Scandalised murmuring)

... Sir! ... Shh!

Richard! - Seymour, Seymour! Bisset would like to do something. - What?

Bisset would like to watch you.

(She laughs)

I would like Bisset to watch you.

(He laughs)

(They laugh)

And you are sure that you heard Sir Richard suggest this?

Yes, he did.

And it was him that asked Lady Worsley to open her legs and place her hand upon her quim.

(Scandalised muttering)

Pray, Mary, is this true?

It is, my lord.

Titled folk hop and skip around what they can and can't be expected to say, for the sake of manners.

But I've always been a plain-speaking working woman and I tell the truth.

So help me, God.

It is proven that Sir Richard Worsley is not entitled to damages of £20,000.

In fact, I would venture Sir Richard Worsley is not entitled to any compensation at all and that his litigation may be dismissed, for it was Sir Richard Worsley himself who debased and devalued his wife.

My lord, gentlemen of the jury...

"If a plaintiff encourages or is privy to, or consenting at all, or contributing to the debauchery of his wife, or joined in it, he will not recover a verdict."

So says the law of this land.

I rest my case.

(Shouts of "hear, hear")

Order, order!

(He bangs gavel)

I will have this court cleared if there is not order!

Silence in court! Silence in court!

Sir, does the plaintiff have your verdict?

Yes, he does, my lord.

A clear breach of legality occurred, when the defendant eloped to the Royal Hotel, London with the plaintiff's wife, and he shared her bed.

Then, sir, there is the question of compensation.

The plaintiff is making a claim of £20,000.

What damages, sir, do you consider proper in this case?

We consider, my Lord, that the defendant, Captain Bisset, should compensate the plaintiff, Sir Richard Worsley, the total sum of... one shilling.

(Crowd gasp)


Order, order!


(Judge bangs gavel)

Clear the court! Clear the court!


We have done it, George.

We have our life together now.

How exactly is that, madam?


He will let me go now. Richard...



You wish to speak to me?

I wish for us to be divorced, and to have Jane ... she belongs to George and I. She is our daughter.

And I want all that rightfully belongs to me.

You have... exposed and... humiliated me.

And you have wilfully betrayed the trust we shared. - Please, Richard.

After all that has happened and passed between us. - No.

Richard, I beg of you, let us put an end to this. - I said no.

You are mine, Seymour, and you will always be mine.

I will never do as you wish.

I will never grant you a divorce.

You belong to me and you will always belong to me.

I may be your lawful property... but I will never be yours.

Compensation has been ordered, and you, sir, shall have it!


Have it!

You bastard, George.

Prime Minister.

I do not require you to resign, sir.

The government has not yet fallen.

I must, my lord.

I'm... filled with shame.

Richard ... torment yourself no further.

Be done with her and divorce her.

Lady Worsley will no more give up her pursuit of independence than will the American colonies.

(She hums a cheerful tune)

These sweet williams are pretty, aren't they, George?

Very pretty, I think.

(She continues to hum)

What is it, my love?

Let us find a new home, away from England, where we may hold our heads up high, and there we can live a life free of all this oppression and gloom.

No, I won't run away from him. I won't.



(She continues to hum)

"No, sir Thro' every change I went But ne'er could find to keep content..."

"All different, those poor garbage were Some fat, some lean, some brown, some fair..."

"Had you seen me on his breast reclined Lips glued to lips and limbs with limbs entwined..."

"With oft repeated acts of dalliance spent My lust quite sated My heart content..."

"Sir Richard Worse-than-sly Cursed the charms that gave him once a virgin to his arms But, sir, those charms you cannot justly blame For were't not THOU the author of thy shame?"

Wonderful. Wonderful...

(She chatters ... indistinct)

Seymour, we have no money.

George, we have lots of money.

Richard has it, and I'm his lawful wife ... so I can spend it as I wish.

(She giggles)

You think?


(She giggles)

Richard has asked me to go to him.

Perhaps these verses shall be the last, my dear.

What a triumph your love of poesy has become.

Someone has to ensure we do not starve, George.

When I'm finished with it, you can take me to bed if you wish.

My love for you has declined.

But Richard wishes to see me.

I know he does.

I did everything for you.

I know you did.

Why are you doing this, George?

I thought I could live like this, but I can't.

Are we not moderns?

Not if living like this is being a modern.

This is because I cannot give you a legitimate heir.

No, Seymour...

I do not love you any more.

I'm very sorry.

Very sorry indeed.

My daughter was taken from me because of you.

What will you do?

I don't know, George.

Go back to Richard.

You were never mine.

Nay... he'd take you back for a farthing.

I belong to no man... and while it is my misfortune to live in an age of men, I will never belong to any man ever again.

(Footsteps recede)

(Door closes)

(He coughs)

You wish to speak to me.

I will grant you wish, and return your clothes and jewels... and I will pay you a generous allowance, on the condition that you cease all expenditure and that you leave England, at once, and remain abroad in France for four years.

You would send me into exile?

There is peace with France.

I'm sure you'll be most content there.

And what of Jane?

I acknowledged her as mine, and she will remain with me.

But it's unfair to...

You left us, Seymour.

It is the law. You have... forfeited all rights to her...

Richard, I'm her mother... no more than a stranger to her.

You're not too old to have another babe, Seymour.

You have George ... you are free to breed as many bastards with him as you wish.

You wish me to depart for four years?

Why do you complain so?

I have lost everything.

And only you?

I'm tired.

Of this.


And so am I.

Then we are agreed.

I loved you, Richard... and I obeyed you, but you never cherished me.
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