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Expect it from thee. Pr’ythee, look more kindly.
--And yet, is the request so very hard ?
I only ask thee noi to plunge thy sword
Into the breast thou lov'st, not kill thy friend;
Is that so hard i-I might have said tiny brother.
Pub. What canst thou mean: Beware, beware,

Horatia;
Thou know'st I dearly love thee, nay, thou know'st
I love the man with whom I must engage.
Yet hast thou faintly read thy bruiher's soul,
If thou canst think intreaties have the power,
Though urg'd with all the tenderness of tears,
To shake his settled purpuse : they may make
My task more hard, and my soul bleed within me,
But cannot touch my virtue.

Horatia. 'Tis not virtue
Which contradicis our nature, 'tis the rage
Of over-weening pride. ilas Ronie no chanpions
She could oppose but you ? Are there not thousands
As warm for glory, and as tried in arms,
Who might without a crime aspire to conquest,
Or die with honest fame?

Pub. Away, away!
Talk to thy lover thus. Dut 'tis not Caius
Thou wouldst lave infamous.

Horatia. Oh, kill me not
With such unkind reproaches. Yes, I own
I love him, more

Pub. Than a chaste Roman maid
Should dare confess.

Horatia. Should dare! What means my brother > I had my father's sanction on my love, And duty taught me first to feel its power.

Should dare confess IIs that the dreadful crime? Alas, but spare him, spare thy friend, Horatius, And I will cast him from my breast for ever. Will that oblige thee :-" Only let him die 66 By other hands, and I will learn to hate him." Pub. Why wilt thou talk thus madly? Love him

still I And if we fall the victims of our country, (Which Heav'n avert 1) wed, and enjoy him freely. Horatia. Oh, never, never. What, my country's

bane! The murderer of my brothers! may the gods First “tear me, blast me, scatter me on winds, " And” pour out each unheard-of vengeance on me!

Pub. Do not torment thyself thus idly-Go, Compose thyself, and be again my sister.

Re-enter Horatius, with the Sword. Horatius. This sword in Veii's field -What dost

thou here? Leave him, I charge thee, girl---Come, come, my

Publius,
Let's haste where duty calls.

Horatia. What! to the field ?
He must not, shall not go; here will I hang-
Oh, if you have not quite cast off affection!
If you detest not your distracted sister

Horatius. Shame of thy race, why dost thou hang

upon him? Wouldst thou entajl eternal infamy On him, on me, and all ?

Horatia. Indeed I would not, I know I ask impossibilities; Yet pity me, my father !

Pub. Pity thee! Begone, fond wretch, nor urge my temper thus. By Heaven, I love thee as a brother ought. Then hear my last resolve; if Fate, averse To Rone and us, determine my destruction, I charge thee wed thy lover; he will then Deserve thee nobly. Or, if kinder gods Propitious hear the prayers of suppliant Rome, And he should fall by me, I then expect No weak upbraidings for a lover's death, But such returns as shall become thy birth, A sister's thanks for having sav'd her country. [Exit. Horatia. Yet stay-Yet hear me, Publius--But one

word. Horatius. Forbear, rash girl, thou'lt tempt thy fa

ther To do an outrage might perhaps distract him.

Horatia. Alas, forgive me, sir, I'm very wreiched,
Indeed I am-Yet I will strive to stop
This swelling grief, and bear it like your daughter.
Do but forgive me, sir.

Horatius. I do, I do
Go in, my child, the gods may find a way

To make thee happy yet. But on thy duty,
Whate'er reports may reach, or fears alarm thee,
I charge thee come not to the field.

Horatia. I will not,
If you command it, sir. But will you then,
As far as cruel honour may permit,
Remember that your poor Horatia's life
Hangs on this dreadful contest ?
Horatius. “ Lead her in."

[Exit Horatia. Looking after her.] Spite of my boasted strength, her

griefs unman me. -But let her from my thoughts. The patriot's breast

No hopes, no fears, but for his country knows,
And in her danger leses private woes. [Exit.

ACT I. SCENE I.

Continues. VALERIUS and VALERIA meeting,

Valerius.
Now, my Valeria, where's the charming she
That calls me to her with a lover's haste
I fly to execute the dear command.

Valeria. 'Tis not the lover, but the friend she wants, If thou dar’st own that name.

Valerius. The friend, my sister!
There's more than friendship in a lover's breast,
More warın, more tender is the flame he feels-

Valeria, Alast these raptures suit not her distress:

She seeks th' indulgent friend, whose sober sense,
Free from the mists of passion, might direct
Her jarring thoughts, and plead her doubtful cause.
Valerius. Am I that friend? Oh, did she turn her

thought
On me for that kind office ?

Valeria. Yes, Valerius.
She chose you out to be her advocate
To Curiatius; 'tis the only hope
She now dares cherish; her relentless brother
With scorn rejects her tears, her father flies her,
And only you remain to sooth her cares,
And save her ere she sinks.

Valerius. Her advocate
To Curiatius!

Valeria. 'Tis to him she sends you,
To urge her suit, and win him from the field.
But come, her sorrows will more strongly picad
Than all my grief can utter. ..

Valerius. To my rival!
To Curiatius plead her cause, and teach
My tongue a lesson which my heart abhors !
Impossible! Valeria, pr’ythee say
Thou saw'st me not; the business of the camp
Confin'd me there. Farewell.

[Going
Valeria. What means my brother?
You cannot leave her now ; for shame, turn back ;
Is this the virtue of a Roman youth?
Oh, by these tears la

Valerius. They flow in vain, Valeria :

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