« ZurückWeiter »
The mercy of the queen was free and full. Thou dearest treasure of my heart, and print Think’st thou that princes merchandize their A dying husband's kiss upon thy lip! grace,
Shall we not live again, even in those forms? As Roman priests their pardons? Do they barter, Shall I not gaze upon thee with these eyes? Screw up, like you, the buyer to a price,
L. J. Gray. Oh, wherefore dost thou soothe me And doubly sell what was designed a gift?
with thy softness ? Gar. My lord, this language ill becomes your Why dost thou wind thyself about my heart, nobleness;
And make this separation painful to us? Nor come I here to bandy words with madmen. Here break we off at once; and let us now, Behold the royal signet of the queen,
Forgetting ceremony, like two friends Which amply speaks her meaning. You, the That have a little business to be done, prisoners,
Take a short leave, and haste to meet again. Have heard, at large, its purport, and must in- Guil. Rest on that hope, my soul--my wifestantly
L.J. Gray. No more. Resolve upon the choice of life or death.
Guil. My sight hangs on thee
Oh, support Pem. Curse on-But wherefore do I loiter
me, Heaven, here?
In this last pang-and let us meet in bliss ! I'll to the queen this moment, and there know
[Guilford is led off by the guard, What 'tis this mischief-making priest intends. L. J. Gray. Can nature bear this stroke?
[Erit. Wom. Alas, she faints ! [Supporting Gar. Your wisdom points you out a proper L. J. Gray. Wilt thou fail now- -The kill
ing stroke is past, A word with you, Lieutenant.
And all the bitterness of death is o'er. (Talks with the Lieutenant aside. Gar. Here let the dreadful hand of vengeance Guil. Must we part, then?
stay; What are those hopes that flattered us but now; Have pity on your youth, and blooming beauty; Those joys, that, like the spring, with all its Cast not away the good which Heaven bestows; flowers,
Time may have many years in store for you, Poured out their pleasures every where around all crowned with fair prosperity, Your husband
Has perished in perverseness. In one poor minute gone; at once they withered, L. J. Gray. Cease, thou raven, And left their place all desolate behind them, Nor violate, with thy profaner malice, L. J. Gray. Such is this foolish world, and My bleeding Guilford's ghost—'Tis gone, 'tis such the certainty
flown : Of all the boasted blessings it bestows :
But lingers on the wing, and waits for me. Then, Guilford, let us have no more to do with
[The scene draws, and discovers a scafit;
fold hung with black, erecutioner Think only how to leave it as we ought;
and guarıts. But trust no more, and be deceived no more. And see my journey's end.
Guil. Yes, I will copy thy divine example, 1 Wom. My dearest lady! [Weeping And tread the paths are pointed out by thee: 2 Wom. Oh, misery ! By thee instructed, to the fatal block
L. J. Gray. Forbear, my gentle'maids, I bend my head with joy, and think it happiness Nor wound my peace with fruitless lamentations; To give my life a ransom for my faith.
The good and gracious hand of Providence From thec, thou angel of my heart, I learn Shall raise you better friends than I have been. That greatest, hardest task, to part with thee. 1 W'om. Oh, never, never ! L. J. Gray. Oh, gloriously resolved! Heaven L. J. Gray. Help to disarray, is my witness,
And fit me for the block; do this last service, My heart rejoices in thee more even now, And do it cheerfully. Now you will see Thus constant as thou art, in death thus faithful, Your poor unhappy mistress sleep in peace, Than when the holy priest first joined our hands, And cease from all her sorrows. These few And nit the sacred knot of bridal love.
trifles, Gar. The day wears fast ; Lord Guilford, have The pledges of a dying mistress' love, you thought?
Receive and share among you. Thou, Maria, Will you lay hold on life?
[To 1 Wom Guil, What are the terms ?
Hast been my old, my very faithful servant : Gar. Death, or the mass, attend you. In dear remembrance of thy love, I leave thee Guil. 'Tis determined :
This book, the law of everlasting truth : Lead to the scaffold.
Make it thy treasure still ; 'twas my support, Gar. Bear him to his fate.
When all help clse forsook me. Guil. Oh, let me fold thee once more in my Gar. Will you yet arms,
Repent, be wise, and save your precious life?
L. J. Gray. Oh, Winchester ! has learning | To latest times the blessing to convey, taught thee that,
And guard that faith for which I die to-day! To barter truth for life?
[Lady Jane goes up to the scaffold. Gar. Mistaken folly!
The scene closes.
Pem. Horror on horror! Blasted be the hand And who persists in error, will be known, That struck my Guilford! Oh, his bleeding trunk Then, when we meet again. Once more, fare Shall live in these distracted eyes for ever! well!
[To her women. Curse on thy fatal arts, thy cruel counsels ! Goodness be ever with you. When I'm dead,
[To Gardiner, Entreat they do no rude, dishonest wrong The queen is deaf, and pitiless as thou art. To my cold, headless corpse; but see it shrouded, Gar. The just reward of heresy and treason And decent laid in earth.
Is fallen upon them both, for their vain obstinacy; Gar. Wilt thou then die?
Untimely death, with infamy on earth, Thy blood be on thy head.
And everlasting punishment hereafter. L. J. Gray. My blood be where it falls; let Pem. And canst thou tell? Who gave thee to the earth hide it;
explore And may it never rise, or call for vengeance. The secret purposes of Heaven, or taught thee Oh, that it were the last shall fall a victim To set a bound to mercy unconfined? To zeal's inhuinan wrath! Thou, gracious Hea- But know, thou proud, perversely-judging Winven,
chester! Hear and defend at length thy suffering people; Howe'er you hard, imperious censures doom, Raise up a monarch of the royal blood,
And portion out our lot in worlds to come, Brave, pious, equitable, wise, and good.
Those, who, with honest hearts, pursue the right, In thy due season let the hero come,
And follow faithfully truth's sacred light, To save thy altars from the rage of Rome : Though suffering here, shall from their sorrows Long let him reign, to bless the rescued land,
cease, And deal out justice with a righteous hand. Rest with the saints, and dwell in endless peace. And when he fails, oh, may he leave a son,
[Ereunt. With equal virtues to adorn his throne;
SIEGE OF DAMASCUS.
CALED, General of the Saracen Army.
nism for the sake of the spoil. Artamon, an Officer of the Guards.
} Saracen Captains. SERGļus, an Express from the Emperor Heracliųs. Raphan, &c. WOMEN.
Officers, Soldiers, and Attendants.
Officers, Soldiers, Citizens, and Attendants.
Act, a Valley adjacent.
SCENE I.— The City.
Perceive it, and pour on such crowds, they blunt
Our weapons, and have drained our stores of Enter EUMENES, followed by a crowd of people.
death, Eum. I'll hear no more.
you next? Or stop your clamorous mouths, that still are open Eum. I have sent a fresh recruit; To bawl sedition, and consume our corn. The valiant Phocyas leads themon-whose deeds If you will follow me, send home your women, In early youth assert his noble race; And follow to the walls; there earn your safety, A more than common ardour seems to warm As brave men should. Pity your wives and chil- His breast, as if he loved and courted danger. dren!
Herb. I fear it will be too late. Yes, I do pity them, Ileaven knows I do,
Eum. [Aside.] I fear it too: Even more
you; nor will I yield them up, And though I braved it to the trembling crowd, Though at your own request, a prey to ruffians I have caught the infection, and I dread the Herbis, what news!
Would I had treated—but 'tis now too late-
Excunt. Herb. News! we are betrayed, deserted; [A noise is heard aithout, of officers giving The works are but half-manned; the Saracens
ist. Off. Help there ! more help! all to the Eum. True; they pretend the gates of Paradise eastern gate!
Stand ever open, to receive the souls 2d Offi. Look where they cling aloft, like clus. Of all that die in fighting for their cause. tered bees !
Pho. Then would I send their souls to Paradise, Here, archers, ply your bows.
And give their bodies to our Syrian eagles. 1st Off. Down with the ladders !
Our ebb of fortune is not yet so low What, will you let them mount?
To leave us desperate. Aids may soon arrive; 2d Offi. Aloft there! give the signal, you that Mean time, in spite of their late bold attack, wait
The city still is ours; their force repelled, In St Mark's tower.
And therefore weaker; proud of this success, 1st Offi. Is the town asleep!
Our soldiers too have gained redoubled courage, Ring out the alarum bell!
And long to meet them on the open plain. (Bell rings, and the citizens run to and fro in What hinders, then, but we repay this outrage, confusion.
And sally on their camp? [A great shout. Eum. No-let us first
Believe the occasion fair, by this advantage, Enter HERBIS.
To purchase their retreat on easy terms : Herb. So—the tide turns; Phocyas has driven That failing, we the better stand acquitted it back.
To our own citizens. However, brave Phocyas, gate once more is ours.
Cherish this ardour in the soldiery,
And in our absence form what force thou canst; Enter EUMENES, Phocyas, Artamon, 8:c. Then if these hungry bloodhounds of the war Eum. Brave Phocyas, thanks! Mine and the Should still be deaf to peace, at our return people's thanks.
Our widened gates shall pour a sudden flood (People shout and cry, A Phocyas, &c. Of vengeance on them, and chastise their
scorn. Yet, that we may not lose this breathing space,
[Ereunt. Hang out the flag of truce. You, Artannon, Haste with a trumpet to the Arabian chiefs, SCENE II.- A Plain before the City. A ProsAnd let them know, that, hostages exchanged,
pect of Tents at a distance. I would meet them now upon the eastern plain.
[Erit Artamon. Enter CalED, ABUDAH, and Daran. Pho. What means Eumenes?
Dar. To treat, my chiefs ! what, are we merEum. Phocyas, I would try
chants then, By friendly treaty, if on terms of peace
That only come to traffic with those Syrians, withdraw their powers.
And poorly cheapen conquest on conditions? Pho. On terms of peace!
No; we were sent to fight the caliph's battles, What terms can you expect from bands of robbers! | Till every iron neck bend to obedience. What terms from slaves, but slavery? You know Another storm makes this proud city ours; These wretches fight not at the call of honour; What need we treat? I ain for war and plunder. For injured rights, or birth, or jealous greatness, Cal. Why, so am I--and but to save the lives That sets the princes of the world in ems, Of mussulmans, not christians, I would not treat. Base-born, and starved amidst their stoney deserts, I hate these christian dogs; and 'tis our task, Long have they viewed from far, with wishing eyes, As thou observest, to fight; our law enjoins it: Our fruitful vales, our tig-trees, olives, vines, Heaven, too, is promised only to the valiant. Our cedars, palıns, and all the verdant wealth Oft has our prophet said, the happy plains That crowns fair Lebanon's aspiring brows. Above lie stretched beneath the blaze of swords. Here have the locusts pitched, nor will they leave Abu. Yet, Daran's loth to trust that heaven These tasted sweets, these blooming fields of plenty,
This earth, it seems, has gifts that please him For barren sands, and native poverty, Till driven away by force.
Cal. Check not his zeal, Abudah. Eum. What can we do?
Abu. No; I praise it. Oar people in despair, our soldiers harrassed Yet, I could wish that zeal had better motives. With daily toil, and constant nightly watch : Has victory no fruits but blood and plunder? Our hopes of succour from the emperor That we were sent to fight, 'tis true; but whereUncertain; Eutyches not yet returned,
fore? That went to ask them; one brave army beaten; For conquest, not destruction. That obtained, The Arabians numerous, cruel, flushed with con- The more we spare, the caliph has more subjects, quest.
And Heaven is better served-But see, they come. Herb. Besides, you know what frenzy fires their minds
Enter EUMENES, Herbis, and Artamon. Of their new faith, and drives them on to danger. Cal. Well, christians, we are met, and war awhile,
They will get
At your request, has stilled his angry voice, Your clashing sects, your mutual rage and strife, To hear what you will propose.
Have driven religion and her angel guards, Eum. We come to know,
Like out-casts, from among you. In her stead, After so many troops you have lost in vain, Usurping superstition bears the sway, If you will draw off in peace, and save the rest. And reigns in mimic state, 'midst idol shows, Herb. Or rather to know first-for yet we And pageantry of power. Who does not mark know not
Your lives! Rebellious to your own great proWhy on your heads you call our pointed arrows, phet In our own just defence? What means this visit ? Who mildly taught you—Therefore Mahomet And why see we so many thousand tents Has brought the sword to govern you by force, Rise in the air, and whiten all our fields ? Nor will accept obedience so precarious. Cal. Is that a question now? you had our sum- Eum. O solemn truths ! though from an immons,
pious tongue !
[Aside. When first we marched against you, to surrender. That we're unworthy of our holy faith, Two moons have wasted since, and now the third To Heaven, with grief and conscious shame, we Is in it's wane. 'Tis true, drawn off awhile, At Aiznadin we met and fought the powers But what are you, that thus arraign our vices, Sent by your emperor to raise our siege. And consecrate your own? Vile hypocrite ! Vainly you thought us gone; we gained a con- Are you not sons of rapine, foes to peace, quest.
Base robbers, murderersYou see we are returned; our hearts, our cause, Cal. Christians, noOur swords the same.
Eum. Then say, Herb. But why those swords were drawn, Why have you ravaged all our peaceful borders ? And what's the cause, inform us.
Plundered our towns and by what claim e'en Eum. Speak your wrongs,
now, If wrongs you have received, and by what means you tread this ground? They may be now repaired.
Herb. What claim, but that of hunger? Abu. Then, christians, hear!
The claim of ravenous wolves, that leave their And heaven inspire you to embrace its truth!
dens Not wrongs to avenge, but to establish right, To prowl at midnight round some sleeping vilOur swords were drawn: For such is heaven's lage, command
Or watch the shepherd's folded flock for prey? Immutable. By us great Mahomet,
Cal. Blasphemer, know, your fields and towns And his successor, boly Abubeker,
are our's; Invite you to the faith.
Our prophet has bestowed them on the faithful, Art. [.Aside.) So-then, it seems
And heaven itself has ratified the grant. There is no harm meant; we are only to be beaten Eum. Oh! now indeed you boast a noble title! Into a new religion- If that's all,
What could your prophet grant? a hireling slave! I find I am already half a convert.
Not even the inules and camels, which he drove, Eum. Now, in the name of Heaven, what faith Were his to give; and yet the bold impostor is this,
Has cantoned out the kingdoms of the earth, That stalks gigantic forth thus armed with terrors, In frantic fits of visionary power, As if it meant to ruin, not to save?
To soothe his pride, and bribe his fellow madmen! That leads embattled legions to the field,
Cal. Was it for this you sent to ask a parley, And marks its progress out with blood and To affront our faith, and to traduce our prophet? slaughter?
Well might we answer you with quick revenge. Herb. Bold, frontless men ! that impudently Nor such indignities– Yet hear, once more, dare
Hear this, our last demand; and this accepted To blend religion with the worst of crimes ! We yet withdraw our war. Be christians still, And sacrilegiously usurp that name,
But swear to live with us in firm alliance, To cover fraud and justify oppression!
To yield us aid, and pay us annual tribute. Eum. Where are your priests? What doctors Ěum. No-Should we grant you aid, we must of your law
be rebels; Have you e'er sent to instruct us in its precepts? And tribute is the slavish badge of conquest. To solve our doubts, and satisfy our reason, Yet since, on just and honourable terms, And kindly lead us through the wilds of error We ask but för own-Ten silken vests, To these new tracts of trath-This would be Weighty with pearl and gems, we'll send your cafriendship,
liph; And well might claim our thanks.
Two, Caled, shall be thine; two thine, Abudah. Cal. Friendship like this
To each inferior captain we decree With scorn had been received: your numerous A turban spun from our Damascus flax, vices,
White as the snows of heaven; to every soldier