The scene is London in 1610. This is a plague year and wealthy people have fled London for the safer countryside. Lovewit has departed until the plague is over and has left his butler, Jeremy, to care for the house. As the play begins, Jeremy and Subtle are arguing over their relative importance to the swindle they are organizing, and each is claiming a larger share of the profit. Dol, who realizes that the two could ruin everything with their loud quarreling, tries to quiet the two men.
At that moment, the first victim, Dapper, arrives at the house. Dapper has come to the...
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