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'Till men and kingdoms help to strengthen it, 30
And must maintain my life exempt from servitude.—
But, tell me, madam, is your grace betrothed?
And yet a shepherd by my parentage.
But, lady, this fair face and heavenly hue
Must grace his bed that conquers Asia,
And means to be a terror to the world,
Measuring the limits of his empery
By"east and wM^as.Ph(EBus. 3oth his course. 40
Lie here ye weeds that I disdain to wear!
This complete armour and this curtle axe
Are adjuncts more beseeming Tamburlaine.
And, madam, whatsoever you esteem
Of this success and loss unvalued,1
Both may invest you empress of the East;
And these that seem but silly country swains
May have the leading of so great an host,
As with their weight shall make the mountains quake,
Even as when windy exhalations 50
Fighting for passage, tilt within the earth.
Tech. As princely lions, when they rouse themselves, Stretching their paws, and threatening herds of beasts, So in his armour looketh Tamburlaine. Methinks I see kings kneeling at his feet, And he with frowning brows and fiery looks, Spurning their crowns from off their captive heads.
1 Not to be valued; as in Richard III,, i. 4:—" Inestimable stones, unvalued jewels."
Usum. And making thee and me, Techelles,
That even to death will follow Tamburlaine.
These Lords, perhaps do scorn our estimates, And think we prattle with distempered spirits; But since they measure our deserts so mean, That in conceit bear empires on our spears, f /VVJ^ I Affecting thoughts coequal with the clouds, / They shall be kept our forced followers, Till with their eyes they view us emperors.
Zeno. The Gods, defenders of the innocent,
Agyd. I hope our ladies' treasures and our
May serve for ransom to our liberties:
Mag. And wheresoever we repose ourselves, So We will report but well of Tamburlaine.
Tamb. Disdains Zenocrate to live with me?
Not all the gold in India's wealthy arms
Tech. What now !—in love?
Tamb. Techelles, women must be flattered: But this is she with whom I am in 6 love.
1 Old copies " Rhodolfe."
1 Cf. 1594* Taming of a Shrew:—
"Thou shalt have garments wrought of Median silk
* i.e. valuable.
* 8vo. "Pooles."—410. "poles."
« 8vo. omits "all.' —4to. reads 1' we all shall."
* 8vo.."it."—410. "in."
\ Enter a Soldier.
Soldi News! .news,!
TatiiK How now—What's the matter? 110
Sold. A thousand Pdfcian horsemen are at hand, Sent from the king to ovk.come us all.
Tamb. How now, my lojds of Egypt, and Zenocrate! How !—musryour jewels be/estored again, And I, that triumphed so, be overcome? How say you, lordings,—.is noiuhis your hope?
Agyd. We hope yourself will "willingly restore them.
Tamb. Such hope, such fortune, have the thousand horse. A Soft ye, my lords, and sweet Zenocrate! You must be forced from me.ere you)go. 120 A thousand horsemen !—-We five hundred foot!— An odds too great for us to stand against; But are they rich ?—and is their armour gopd?
Sold. Their plumed helms are wrough*\with beaten gold,
Their swords enamelled, and about their .sicks
Tamb. Then shall we fight courageously with them? Or look you I should play the orator?
1 So the 8vo. Modern editors (including Dyce) read " hang." It is very common to find in old writers a plural subject joined to a singular verb. See Abbott's Shakespearean Grammar (§ 333). I have retained the seeming anomaly wherever it occurs in the editio princeps,
2 Gaily dressed. The use of the word "brave " in this sense is very common.
Tech. No: cowards and faint-hearted runaways 130 Look for orations when the foe is near Our swords shall play the orator for us.
Usum. Come! let us meet them at the mountain top,1 And with a sudden and a hot alarurri, Drive all their horses headlong down the hill. Tech. Come, let us march ]
Tamb. Stay! ask a parle first.
The Soldiers enter. Open the mails,2 yet guard the treasure sure; Lay out our golden wedges to the view, That their reflections may amaze the Persians; And look we friendly on them when they come; 140 But if they offer word or violence, We'll fight five hundred men at arms to one, Before we part with our possession. And 'gainst the general we will lift our swords, And either lajich3 his greedy thirsting throat, Or take him jsdspnex, and his chain shall serve For manacles, tMl he be ransomed home.
Tech. I hear them come; shall we encounter them? ( Tamb. Keep all your standings and not stir a foot, ^-Myself will bide the danger of the brunt . 150
Enter Theridamas and others.