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the amorous glance of an eye can settle an idle thought in the heart: no, no, it is children's game, a life for sempsters and scholars; the one, pricking in clouts, liave nothing else to think on; the other, picking fancies out of books, have little else to marvel at. Go, Apelies, take with you your Campaspe ; Alexander is cloyed with looking on that, which thou wonderest at.
Apėlles. Thanks 10 your Majesty ou bended kuee; you have honoured Appelles.
Campaspe. Thanks with bowed heart; you have blest Campaspe.
[Exeunt. Alexander. Page, go warn Clytus and Parmenio, and the other lords, to be in readiness; let the trumpet sound, strike up the drum, and I will presently into Persia. How now, Hepbestion, is Alexander able to resist love as he list?
Hephestion. The conquering of Thebes was not so honourable as the subduing of these thoughts.
Alexander. It were a shame Alexander should desire to coinmand the world, if he could not command himself. But come, let us go. And, good Hephestion, when all the world is won, and every country is tlline and mine, either find me out another to subdue, or on my word, I will fall in love.”
Marlowe is a name that stands high, and almost first in this list of dramatic worthies. He was a little before Shakespear's time*, and has a marked character both from him and the rest. There is a lust of power in his writings, a hunger and thirst after unrighteousness, a glow of the imagination, unhallowed by any thing but its own energies. His thoughts burn within him
* He died about 1594.11a.
like a furnace with bickering flames; or throwing out black 'smoke and mists, that hide the dawn of genius, or like a poisonous mineral, corrode the heart. His Life and Death of Doctor Faustus, though an imperfect and unequal performance, is his greatest work. Faustus himself is a rude sketch, but it is a gigantic one. This character may be considered as a personification of the pride of will and eagerness of curiosity, sublimed beyond the reach of fear and
He is hurried away, and, as it were, devoured by a tormenting desire to enlarge his knowledge to the utmost bounds of nature and art, and to extend his power with his knowledge. He would realise all the fictions of a lawless imagination, would solve the most subtle speculations of abstract reason; and for this purpose, sets at defiance all mortal consequences, and leagues himself with demoniacal power, with “ fate and metaphysical aid.” The idea of witchcraft and necromancy, once the dread of the vulgar and the darling of the visionary recluse, seems to have had its origin in the restless tendency of the human mind, to conceive of and aspire to more than it can atchieve by natural means, and in the obscure apprehension that the gratification of this extravagant and unauthorised desire, can only be attained by the
sacrifice of all our ordinary hopes, and better pros·pects to the infernal agents that lend themselves to its accomplishment. Such is the foundation of the present story. Faustus, in his impatience to fulfil at once and for a moment, for a few short years, all the desires and conceptions of his soul, is willing to give in exchange his soul and body to the great enemy of mankind. Whatever he fancies, becomes by this means present to his sense: whatever he commands, is done. He calls back time past, and anticipates the future: the visions of antiquity pass before him, Babylon in all its glory, Paris and Enone: all the projects of philosophers, or creations of the poet pay tribute at his feet: all the delights of fortune, of ambition, of pleasure, and of learning are centered in his person ; and from a short-lived dream of supreme felicity and drunken power, he sinks into an abyss of darkness and perdition. This is the alternative to which he submits; the bond which he signs with his blood As the outline of the character is grand and daring, the execution is abrupt and fearful. The thoughts are vast and irregular; and the style halts and staggers under them, “ with uneasy steps ;"_"such footing found the sole of unblest feet.” There is a little fustian and incongruity of metaphor now and then, which is not very in
jurious to the subject. It is time to give a few
Shall I make spirits fetch me what I please?
Enter Valdes and Cornelius.
Come, German Valdes, and Cornelius,
Then, gentle friends, aid me in this attempt ;
Valdes. These books, thy wit, and our experience
Fuustus. As resolute am I in this
In his colloquy with the fallen angel, he shews the fixedness of his determination :
“ What is great Mephostophilis so passionate
For being deprived of the joys of heaven?
* An anachronism.