Our Country’s Good

by

Timberlake Wertenbaker

Teachers and parents! Our Teacher Edition on Our Country’s Good makes teaching easy.
A convict in the penal colony. A loud and crass individual, Dabby is Mary’s closest friend in the settlement, which is why she decides that—since Mary’s going to be in the play—she wants to act in The Recruiting Officer, too. This is much to Ralph’s chagrin, since Dabby isn’t as talented as Mary. Nevertheless, he gives her a small role, and Mary helps her learn her lines, since she can’t read. Just before the first performance, Dabby tells her fellow players that she intends to sneak away while everyone is taking a bow, but Mary and the others convince her to stay, pointing out that running away will only make life worse for everyone else.

Dabby Bryant Quotes in Our Country’s Good

The Our Country’s Good quotes below are all either spoken by Dabby Bryant or refer to Dabby Bryant. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Punishment and Rehabilitation Theme Icon
).
Act One, Scene Eight Quotes

DABBY. You’re wasting time, girl, he’s ripe for the plucking. You can always tell with men, they begin to walk sideways. And if you don’t—

MARY. Don’t start. I listened to you once before.

DABBY. What would you have done without that lanky sailor drooling over you?

MARY. I would have been less of a whore.

DABBY. Listen, my darling, you’re only a virgin once. You can’t go to a man and say, I’m a virgin except for this one lover I had. After that, it doesn’t matter how many men go through you.

MARY. I’ll never wash the sin away.

DABBY. If God didn’t want women to be whores he shouldn’t have created men who pay for their bodies.

Related Characters: Mary Brenham (speaker), Dabby Bryant (speaker), Second Lieutenant Ralph Clark
Page Number: 39
Explanation and Analysis:
Act Two, Scene Five Quotes

I have seen the white of this animal’s bones, his wretched blood and reeky convict urine have spilled on my boots and he’s feeling modest? Are you feeling modest, Sideway?

(He shoves SIDEWAY aside.)

Modesty.

Bryant. Here.

(DABBY comes forward.)

On all fours.

(DABBY goes down on all fours.)

Now wag your tail and bark, and I’ll throw you a biscuit. What? You’ve forgotten? Isn’t that how you begged for your food on the ship? Wag your tail, Bryant, bark! We’ll wait.

Page Number: 78
Explanation and Analysis:
Act Two, Scene Seven Quotes

DABBY. When dealing with men, always have a contract.

MARY. Love is a contract.

DABBY. Love is the barter of perishable goods. A man’s word for a woman’s body.

Related Characters: Mary Brenham (speaker), Dabby Bryant (speaker), Second Lieutenant Ralph Clark , John Wisehammer
Page Number: 85
Explanation and Analysis:

When I say Kite’s lines I forget everything else. I forget the judge said I’m going to have to spend the rest of my natural life in this place getting beaten and working like a slave. I can forget that out there it’s trees and burnt grass, spiders that kill you in four hours and snakes. I don’t have to think about what happened to Kable, I don’t have to remember the things I’ve done, when I speak Kite’s lines I don’t hate anymore.

Related Characters: John Arscott (speaker), Dabby Bryant, Henry Kable
Page Number: 85
Explanation and Analysis:
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Dabby Bryant Quotes in Our Country’s Good

The Our Country’s Good quotes below are all either spoken by Dabby Bryant or refer to Dabby Bryant. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Punishment and Rehabilitation Theme Icon
).
Act One, Scene Eight Quotes

DABBY. You’re wasting time, girl, he’s ripe for the plucking. You can always tell with men, they begin to walk sideways. And if you don’t—

MARY. Don’t start. I listened to you once before.

DABBY. What would you have done without that lanky sailor drooling over you?

MARY. I would have been less of a whore.

DABBY. Listen, my darling, you’re only a virgin once. You can’t go to a man and say, I’m a virgin except for this one lover I had. After that, it doesn’t matter how many men go through you.

MARY. I’ll never wash the sin away.

DABBY. If God didn’t want women to be whores he shouldn’t have created men who pay for their bodies.

Related Characters: Mary Brenham (speaker), Dabby Bryant (speaker), Second Lieutenant Ralph Clark
Page Number: 39
Explanation and Analysis:
Act Two, Scene Five Quotes

I have seen the white of this animal’s bones, his wretched blood and reeky convict urine have spilled on my boots and he’s feeling modest? Are you feeling modest, Sideway?

(He shoves SIDEWAY aside.)

Modesty.

Bryant. Here.

(DABBY comes forward.)

On all fours.

(DABBY goes down on all fours.)

Now wag your tail and bark, and I’ll throw you a biscuit. What? You’ve forgotten? Isn’t that how you begged for your food on the ship? Wag your tail, Bryant, bark! We’ll wait.

Page Number: 78
Explanation and Analysis:
Act Two, Scene Seven Quotes

DABBY. When dealing with men, always have a contract.

MARY. Love is a contract.

DABBY. Love is the barter of perishable goods. A man’s word for a woman’s body.

Related Characters: Mary Brenham (speaker), Dabby Bryant (speaker), Second Lieutenant Ralph Clark , John Wisehammer
Page Number: 85
Explanation and Analysis:

When I say Kite’s lines I forget everything else. I forget the judge said I’m going to have to spend the rest of my natural life in this place getting beaten and working like a slave. I can forget that out there it’s trees and burnt grass, spiders that kill you in four hours and snakes. I don’t have to think about what happened to Kable, I don’t have to remember the things I’ve done, when I speak Kite’s lines I don’t hate anymore.

Related Characters: John Arscott (speaker), Dabby Bryant, Henry Kable
Page Number: 85
Explanation and Analysis: