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Hor. Yet hold— thou know'st I dare-think how
we've liv'd[They fight; Altamont presses on Horatio, who retires. “ Nay then, 'tis brutal violence; and thus, ". Thus Nature bids me guard the life she gave.
“ [They fight.”
LAVINIA enters, and runs between their swords. Lav. My brother, my Horatio! Is it possible ! Oh, turn your cruel swords upon Lavinia. If you must quench your impious rage in blood, Behold, my heart shall give you all her store, To save those dearer streams that flow from yours. Alt. 'Tis well thou hast found a safe-guard ; none
but this, No pow'r on earth could save thee from my fury.
6. Lav. O fatal, deadly sound!”
Hor. Safety from thee! Away, vain boy! Hast thou forgot the rev'rence Due to my arm, thy first, thy great example, Which pointed out thy way to noble daring, And shew'd thee what it was to be a man? Lav. What busy, meddling fiend, what foe to goodness,
340 Could kindle such a discord ? « Oh, lay by “ Those most ungentle looks, and angry weapons, “ Unless you mean my griefs and killing fears *. Should stretch me out at your relentless feet, « A wretched corse, the victim of your fury."
Hor. Ask'st thou what made us foes? 'Twas base in.
gratitude, 'Twas such a sin to friendship, as Heav'n's mercy, That strives with man's untoward, monstrous wicked
Alt. Thou art my sister, and I would not make thee
[He is going out, Lavinia holds him. Lav. Stay, Altamont, my brother, stay ; “ if ever “ Nature, or what is nearer much than nature, “ The kind consent of our agreeing minds, 360 “ Have made us dear to one another, stay, “ And speak one gentle word to your Horatio. “ Behold, his anger melts, he longs to love you, “ To call you friend, then press you hard, with all " The tender, speechless joy of reconcilement."
Alt. It cannot, shall not be--you must not hold me. Lav. Look kindly, then.
Alt. Each minute that I stay, Is a new injury to fair Calista. From thy false friendship, to her arms I'll fly; “ There, if in any pause of love I rest, “ Breathless with bliss, upon her panting breast,
THE FAIR PENITENT.
56 . THE FAIR PENITENT. & III. « In broken, melting accents, I will swear, “ Henceforth to trust my heart with none but her;" Then own, the joys which on her charms attend, Have more than paid me for my faithless friend.
[Altamont breaks from Lavinia, and exit. Hor. Oh, raise thee, my Lavinia, from the earth. It is too much; this tide of flowing grief, This wond'rous waste of tears, too much to give To an ungrateful friend, and cruel brother. 380
Lav. Is there not cause for weeping? Oh, Horatio ! A brother and a husband were my treasure, 'Twas all the little wealth that poor Lavinia Say'd from the shipwreck of her father's fortunes. One half is lost already. If thou leav'st me; If thou should'st prove unkind to me, as Altamont, Whom shall I find to pity my distress, To have compassion on a helpless wanderer, And give her where to lay her wretched head? Hor. Why dost thou wound me with thy soft com.
plainings? Tho' Altamont be false, and use me hardly, Yet think not I impute his crimes to thee. Talk not of being forsaken; for I'll keep thee Next to my heart, my certain pledge of happiness. “ Heav'n form'd thee gentle, fair, and full of goodness, “ And made thee all my portion here on earth: “ It gave thee to me, as a large amends " For fortune, friends, and all the world beside.”
Lav. Then you will love me still, cherish me ever, And hide me from misfortune in your bosom. 400 “ Here end my cares, nor will I lose one thought, “ How we shall live, or purchase food and raiment. “ The holy Pow'r, who cloaths the senseless earth, “ With woods, with fruits, with flow'rs, and verdant
grass, " Whose bounteous hand feeds the whole brute crea
tion, “ Knows all our wants, and has enough to give us.”
Hor. From Genoa, from falshood and inconstancy, To some more honest, distant clime we'll go. . Nor will I be beholden to my country, For aught but thee, the partner of my flight.
“ Lav. Yes, I will follow thee; forsake, for thee, “ My country, brother, friends, ev'n all I have. “ Tho' mine's a little all; yet were it more, " And better far, it should be left for thee, “ And all that I would keep, should be Horatio. “ So, when a merchant sees his vessel lost, “ Tho' richly freighted from a foreign coast, “ Gladly, for life, the treasure he would give; “ And only wishes to escape, and live: “ Gold, and his gains, no more employ his mind; “ But, driving o'er the billows with the wind, 421 “ Cleaves to one faithful plank, and leaves the rest behind.
[Exeunt. ACT IV. SCENE 1.
A Garden. Enter ALTAMONT.
Altamont. “ With what unequal tempers are we form’d? « One day the soul, supine with ease and fulness, « Revels secure, and fondly tells herself “ The hour of evil can return no more; “ The next, the spirits, palld and sick of riot, “ Turn all to discord, and we hate our beings, 6 Curse the past joy, and think it folly all, “ And bitterness and anguish. Oh, last night I " What has ungrateful beauty paid me back, “ For all the mass of friendship which I squander'd? « Coldness, aversion, tears, and sullen sorrow, “ Dash'd all my bliss, and damp'd my bridal bed. “ Soon as the morning dawn'd, she vanish'd from
me, • Relentless to the gentle call of love. “ I've lost a friend, and I have gain'
d a wife! “ Turn not to thought, my brain ; but let me find “ Some unfrequented shade ; there lay me down, " And let forgetful dulness steal upon me, “ To soften and assuage this pain of thinking. [Exit.
Lothario and Calista discovered. Loth. Weep not, my fair; but let the God of Love Laugh in thy eyes, and revel in thy heart,