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Nor languish o'er irreparable ruins ;
Come, haste and live-Thy innocence and truth
Shall bless our wand'rings, and propitiate Heav'n.

IRENE.

Press not her flight, while yet her feeble nerves
Refuse their office, and uncertain life
Still labours with imaginary woe;
Here let me tend her with officious care,
Watch each unquiet flutter of the breast,
And joy to feel the vital warmth return,
To see the cloud forsake her kindling cheek,
And hail the rosy dawn of rising health.

ASPASIA.

Oh! rather, scornful of flagitious greatness,
Resolve to to share our dangers and our toils,
Companion of our flight, illustrious exile,
Leave slavery, guilt, and infamy behind.

IRENE.

My soul attends thy voice, and banish'd Virtue
Strives to regain her empire of the mind :
Assist her efforts with thy strong persuasion;
Sure 'tis the happy hour ordain'd above,
When vanquish'd Vice shall tyrannize no more.

DEMETRIUS.

Remember peace and anguish are before thee, And honour and reproach, and Heav'n and Hell.

ASPASIA.

Content with freedom, and precarious greatness.

DEMETRIUS.

Now make thy choicę, while yet the pow'r of choice Kind Heav'n affords thee, and inviting Mercy, Holds out her hand to lead thee back to truth.

IRENE.

Stay-in this dubious twilight of conviction,
The gleams of reason, and the clouds of passion,
Irradiate and obscure my breast by turns :
Stay but a moment, and prevailing truth
Will spread resistless light upon my soul.

DEMETRIUS.

But since none knows the danger of a moment,
And Heav'n forbids to lavish life

away, Let kind compulsion terminate the contest.

[Seizing her hand, Ye Christian captives, follow me to freedom ; A galley waits us, and the winds invite,

IRENE.

Whence is this violence ?

DEMETRIUS.

Your calmer thought Will teach a gentler term.

IRENE.

Forbear this rudeness, And learn the rev'rence due to Turkey's Queen: Fly, slaves, and call the Sultan to my rescue.

DEMETRIUS.

Farewell, unhappy maid : may every joy
Be thine, that wealth can give, or guilt receive !

ASPASIA.

And when, contemptuous of imperial pow'r,
Disease shall chace the phantoms of ambition,
May penitence attend thy mournful bed,
And wing thy latest prayer to pitying Heav'n!

[Exeunt Dem. Asp. with part of the attendants.

SCENE VI. CIRENE walks at a distance from her attendants.]

After a pause. Against the head, which innocence secures, Insidious Malice aims her darts in vain, Turn'dbackwards by the pow'rfulbreath of Heav'n. Perhaps even now the lovers, unpursu'd, Bound o'er the sparkling waves. Go, happy bark, Thy sacred freight shall still the raging main. To guide thy passage shall th' aërial spirits Fiil all the starry lamps with double blaze; Th' applauding sky shall pour forth all its beams, To grace the triumph of victorious virtue; While I, not yet familiar to my crimes, Recoil from thought, and shudder at myself. How am I chang'd! How lately did Irene Fly from the busy pleasures of her sex, Well pleas'dto search thetreasures of remembrance, And live her guiltless moments o'er anew ! Come, let us seek new pleasures in the palace,

[To her attendants going off Till soft fatigue invite us to repose.

SCENE VII. [Enter MUSTAPHA, meeting and stopping her.]

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IRENE.

What dream of sudden power Has taught my slave the language of command! Henceforth be wise, nor hope a second pardon.

MUSTAPHA.

Who calls for pardon from a wretch condemn’d?

IRENF.

Thy look, thy speech, thy action, all is wildnessWho charges guilt on me?

MUSTAPHA.

Who charges guilt ! Ask of thy heart; attend the voice of Conscience Who charges guilt! lay by this proud resentment That fires thy cheek, and elevates thy mien, Nor thus usurp the dignity of virtue. Review this day.

IRENE.

Whate'er thy accusation, The Sultan is my judge.

MUSTAPHA.

That hope is past; Hard was the strife of justice and of love ; But now 'tis o’er, and justice has prevail'd. Know'st thou not Cali? know'st thou not Deme.

trius?

IRENE.

Bold slave, I know them both I know them traitors,

MUSTAPHA. Perfidious !-yes-too well thou know'st them

'traitors.

IRENE.

Their treason throws no stain upon

Irene. This day has prov'd my fondness for the Sultan ; He knew Irene's truth.

MUSTAPHA.

The Sultan knows it, He knows how near apostacy to treasonBut 'tis not mine to judge-1 scorn and leave thee. I go, lest vengeance urge my hand to blood, To blood too mean to stain a soldier's sabre,

[Exit Mustapha. IRENE, to her attendants. Go blust'ring slave-He has not heard of Murza. That dex'trous message frees me from suspicion.

SCENE VIII. Enter HASAN, CARAZA, with Mutes, who throw

the black robe upon IRENE, and sign to her attendants to withdraw.

HASAN

Torgive, fair Excellence, th' unwilling tongue,
The tongue, that, fore'd by strong necessity,
Bids beauty, such as thine, prepare to die.

IRENE.

What wild mistake is this! Take hence with speed Your robe of mourning, and your dogs of death. Quick from my sight, you inauspicious monsters, Nor dare henceforth to shock Irene's walks.

HASAN.

Alas! they come commanded by the Sultan,
Th' unpitying ministers of Turkish justice,
Nor dare to spare the life his frown condemns.

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Are these the rapid thunderbolts of war,
That
pour

with sudden violence on kingdoms, And spread their fames resistless o'er the world? VOL. I,

L

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