« ZurückWeiter »
Suet. He shall have fitting funeral.
Car. Then Rome shall know Car. I yield then;
The man, that makes her spring of glory grow. Not to your blows, but your brave courtesies. Suet. Petillius, you have shewn much worth Pet. Thus we conduct, then, to the arms of peace,
Redeemed much error ; you have my love again; The wonder of the world!
Preserve it. Junius, with you I make him Suet. Thus I embrace thee; (Flourish. Equal in the regiment, And let it be no flattery, that I tell thee,
Jun. The elder and the nobler; Thou art the only soldier !
I will give place, sir. Car. How to thank ye,
Suet. You shew a friend's soul. I must hereafter find upon your usage.
March on, and through the camp, in every tongue, I am for Rome?
The virtues of great Caratach be sung! (Ereunt Suet. You must.
THE DEATH OF ALEXANDER THE GREAT.
WOMEN. ALEXANDER THE GREAT.
SYSIGAMBIS, mother of the royal family. Clytus, master of the horse.
Statira, daughter of Darius, married to LYSIMACHUS, prince of the blood.
Alerander. HEPuestion, Alerander's favourite.
Roxana, daughter of Cohortanus, first wife of CASSANDER, son of Antipater,
Alerander. POLYPERCHON, commander of the
Parisatis, sister to Statira, in love with Phalanr,
conspirators. Lysimachus. Philip, brother to Cassander,
Attendants, Slades, Ghost, Dancers, Guards. THESSALUS the Median, PERDICCAS, > EUMENES, great commanders. MELEAGER, ARIST DER, sayer
Heph. Coward Alesh! O feeble arm! Enter HEPHESTION, LYSIMACHUS, fighting ; He frowned and smìled, and foiled me like a fencer,
He dallied with my point, and when I thrust, Clytus parting them.
O reverend Clytus, father of the war, Cly. What, are you madmen? ha —Put up, Most famous guard of Alexander's life, 1
Take pity on my youth, and lend a sword: Then, mischief's in the bosoin of
both. Lysimachus is brave, and will but scorn me; Lys. I have his sword.
Kill me, or let me fight with him again. Cly. But must not have his life.
Lys. There, take thy sword, and since thou art Lys. Must not, old Clytus ?
resolved Cly. Mad Lysimachus, you must not. For death, thou hast the noblest from my hand.
Cly. Stay thee, Lysimachus; Hephestion, hold;| Two wives he takes, two rival queens disturb I bar you both, my body interposed.
The court; and while each hand does beauty hold, Now let me see, which of you dares to strike! Where is there room for glory? By Jove, ye have stirred the old man; that rash Heph. In his heart. arm,
Cly. Well said. That first advances, moves against the gods, You are his favourite, and I had forgot Against the wrath of Clytus, and the will Who I was talking to. See Sysigambis comes, Of our great king, whose deputy I stand. Reading a letter to your princess; go, Lys. Well, I shall take another time.
Now make your claim, while I attend the king. Heph. And I.
]Erit. Cly. "Tis false. Another time, what time? what foolish hour?
Enter SysigambIS, Parisatis. No time shall see a brave man do amiss.
Par. Did not you love my father? Yes, I see And what's the noble cause, that makes this You did ; his very name but mentioned brings madness?
The tears, however unwilling, to your eyes. What big ambition blows this dangerous fire? I loved him too; he would not thus have forced A Cupid's puff, is it not, woman's breath? My trembling heart, which your commands may By all your triumphs in the heat of youth,
break, When towns were sacked, and beauties prostrate But never bend. lay,
Sys. Forbear thy lost complaints ; When my blood boiled, and nature worked me Urge not a suit, which I can never grant. high,
Behold the royal signet of the king, Clytus ne'er bowed his body to such shame: Therefore resolve to be Hephestion's wife, The brave will scorn the cobweb arts- -The Par. No! since Lysimachus has won my hcart, souls
My body shall be ashes, e'er another’s. Of all that whining, smiling, cozening sex, Sys. For sixty rolling years who ever stood Weigh not one thought of any man of war. The shock of state so unconcern'd as I?
Lys. I confess our vengeance was ill-timed. This, whom I thought to govern, being young, Cly. Death! I had rather this right arm were Heaven, as a plague to power, has rendered strong; lost,
Judge my distresses, and my temper prize; To which I owe my glory, than our king Who, though unfortunate, would still be wise. Should know your fault- -what, on this famous Lys. To let you know, that misery doth sway
day ! Heph. I was to blame.
An humbler fate than yours, see at your feet Cly. This memorable day,
The lost Lysimachus: 0 mighty queen, When our hot master, that would tire the world, I have but this to beg, impartial stand; Out-ride the labouring sun, and tread the stars, And, since Hephestion serves by your permission, When he, inclined to rest, comes peaceful on, Disdain not me, who ask your royal leave Listening to songs: while all his trumpets sleep, To cast a throbbing heart before her feet. and plays with monarchs, whom he used to drive; Heph. A blessing, like possession of the prinShall we begin disorders, make new broils ?
cess, We, that have temper learnt, shall we awake No services, not crowns, nor all the blood, Hushed Mars, the lion, that had left to roar? That circles in our bodies, can deserve :
Lys. 'Tis true; old Clytus is an oracle. Therefore I take all helps, much more the king's, Put up, Hephestion_did not passion blind And what your majesty vouchsafed to give ; My reason, I on such occasion too
Your word is past, where all my hopes must hang. Could thus have urged,
Lys. There perish too—all words want sense Heph. Why is it then we love?
in love; Cly. Because unmanned.
But love and I bring such a perfect passion, Why, is not Alexander grown example ? So nobly pure, 'tis worthy of her eyes, O that a face should thus bewitch a soul, Which without blushing she may justly prize. And ruin all, that's right and reasonable !
Heph. Such arrogance, should Alexander woo, Talk be my bane, yet the old man must talk: Would lose him all the conquests he has won. Not so he loved, when he at Issus fought,
Lys. Let not a conquest once
be named by And joined in mighty duel great Darius,
you, Whom from his chariot, flaming all with gems, Who this dispute must to my mercy owe. He hurled to earth, and crushed the imperial Sys. Rise, brave Lysimaclius, Ilephestion, rise : crown;
'Tis true Hephestion first declared his love; Nor could the gods defend their images, And 'tis as true, I promised him my aid ; Which with the gaudy coach lay overturned : Your glorious king turned mighty advocate. Twas not the shaft of love, that did the feat; How noble, therefore, were the victory, Cupid had nothing there to do; but now If we could vanquish this disordered love?
[Both kneel. Heph. It will never be.
Thess. The haughty Polyperchon comes this Lys. No, I will yet love on,
way, And hear from Alexander's mouth, in what A mal-content, on whom I lately wrought, Hephestion merits more than I.
That for a slight affront, at Susa given, Sys. I grieve,
Bears Alexander most pernicious hate. And fear the boldness, which your love inspires; Cass. So, when I mocked the Persians, that But lest her sight should haste your enterprize,
adored him, 'Tis just I take the object from your eyes. He struck me in the face, and by the hair
[E.reunt Sys. and Par. He swung me to his guards to be chastised; Lys. She's gone, and see, the day, as if her look for which and for my father's weighty cause, llad kindled it, is lost, now she is vanished. When I abandon what I have resolved,
Heph. A sudden gloominess and horror comes May I again be beaten like a slave. About me.
But lo, where Polyperchon comes! now fire him Lys. Let's away to meet the king;
With such complaints, that he may shoot to ruin. You know my suit.
Pol. Sure I have found those friends, dare seLys. No, I would avoid him;
cond me; There's something in that busy face of his,
I hear fresh murmurs as I
pass along : That shocks my nature.
Yet, rather than put up, I'll do it alone. Heph. Where and what you please. [Ereunt. Did not Pausanias, a youth, a stripling,
A beardless boy, swelled with inglorious wrong,
For a less cause his father Philip kill?
Peace then, full heart! move like a cloud about,
The stock of all thy poison on his head. Drives heavily his sable chariot on :
Cass. All nations bow their heads with homage The face of day now blushes scarlet deep,
down, As if it feared the stroke which I intend,
And kiss the feet of this exalted man : Like that of Jupiter-Lightning and thunder! The name, the shout, the blast from every mouth, The lords above are angry, and talk big,
Is Alexander : Alexander bursts Or rather walk the mighty cirque like mourners Your checks, and with a crack so loud Clad in long clouds, the robes of thickest night, It drowns the voice of Heaven; like dogs ye fawn, And seem to groan for Alexander's fall.
The earth's commanders fawn, and follow him;
With universal cry.
And lick his feet? Boys hoot me from the palace, • If cursed Cassander never had been born.' To haunt some cloister with my senseless walk,
When thus the noble soul of Polyperchon Enter Thessalus, and Philip, with letters. Lets go the aim of all his actions, honour. Thess. My lord Cassander.
Thess. The king shall slay me, cut me up alive, Cass. Ha! who's there?
Ply me with fire and scourges, rack me worse Phil. Your friends.
Than once he did Philotas, e'er I bow. Cass. Welcome dear Thessalus, and brother Cass. Curse on thy tongue for mentioning PhiPhilip:
lotas! Papers—with what contents?
I had rather thou hadst Aristander been, Phil. From Macedon
And to my soul's confusion raised up hell, A trusty slave arrived_great Antipater
With all the furies brooding upon horrors, Writes, that your mother laboured with you long, Than brought Philotas' murder to remembrance. Your birth was slow, and slow is all your life. Phil. I saw him racked, a sight so dismal sad Cass. Ile writes, dispatch the king-Craterus My eyes did ne'er behold. comes,
Cass. So disipal! Peace! Who in my room must govern Macedon; It is unutterable ; let me stand, Let him not live a day—he dies to-night; And think upon the tragedy you saw; And thus my father but forestalls my purpose : By Mars it comes! av! now the rack's set for Why am I slow then? If I rode on thunder, Bloody Craterus, his inveterate foe, I must a moment have to fall from heaven, With pitiless Ilephestion standing by: Ere I could blast the growth of this Colossus. Philotas, like an angel seized by tiends,
Is straight disrobed, a napkin ties his head, A surfeit, nay a fit of common sickness,
Phil. Hell cannot be more bent
Pol. Behold hand : and if you
my Yet without trembling, or a tear, endure
truth, The torments of the damned ? O barbarians, Tear up my breast, and lay my
it. Could you stand by, and yet refuse to suffer? Cass. Join then, O worthy, hearty, noble hands, Ye saw him bruised, torn, to the bones made bare; Fit instruments for such majestic souls ! His veins wide lanced, and the poor quivering Remember Hermolaus, and be hushed. flesh
Pol. Still as the bosom of the desert night, With pincers from his manly bosom ript, As fatal planets, or deep plotting fiends. Till ye discovered the great heart lie panting. Cass. T'o day he comes from Babylon to Susa, Pol. Why killed we not the king, to save Phi- With proud Roxana. lotas?
Ah! who's that?- -look there! Cass. Asses! fools! but asses will bray, and fools be angry;
Enter the Ghost of King Philip, shaking a trunWhy stood then like statues? there's the case,
cheon at them, walks over the Stage. ye The horror of the sight had turned ye marble. Cass. Now by the gods, or furies, which I ne'er So the pale Trojans, from their weeping walls, Believed, -there's one of them arrived to shake Saw the dear body of the godlike Hector, Bloody and soiled, dragged on the famous ground, What art thou? glaring thing, speak! What, the Yet senseless stood, nor with drawn weapons ran, spirit To save the great remains of that prodigious Of our king Philip, or of Polyphemus?
Nay hurl thy truncheon, second it with thunder; Phil. Wretched Philotas! bloody Alexander! We will abidem Thessalus, saw you nothing?
Thess. Soon after him the great Parmenio fell, Thess. Yes, and am more amazed than you Stabbed in his orchard by the tyrant's doom. But where's the need to mention public loss, Phil. 'Tis said, that many prodigies were scen When each receives particular disgrace? This morn, but none so horrible as this.
Pol. Late I remember, to a banquet called, Pol. What! can you fear? though the earth After Alcides' goblet swift had gone
yawned so wide, The giddy round, and wine had made me bold, That all the labours of the deep were seen, Stirring the spirits up to talk with kings,
And Alexander stood on the other side, I saw Craterus with Hephestion enter
I'd leap the burning ditch to give him death, In Persian robes; to Alexander's health
Or sink myself for ever: Pray, to the business. They largely drank; then, turning eastward, fell Cass. As I was saying, this Roxana, whom, Flat on the pavement, and adored the sun. To aggravate my hate to him, I love, Straight to the king they sacred reverence gave, Meeting him as he came triumphant from With solemn words, O son of thundering Jove, The Indies, kept him revelling at Susa ; Young Ammon, live for ever;' then kissed the But as I found, a deep repentance since ground.
Turns his affections to the queen Statira, I laughed aloud, and, scoffing, asked them, why To whom he swore (before he could espouse her) They kissed no harder ;- -but the king leapt up, That he would never bed Roxana more. And spurned me to the earth with this reply: Pol. How did the Persian queen receive the • Do thou !' whilst with his foot he prest my neck,
Of his revolt? Till from my ears, my nose, and mouth, the blood Thess. With grief incredible ! Gushed forth, and I lay foaming on the earth- Great Sysigambis wept, but the young queen For which I wish this dagger in his heart. Fell dead among her maids;
Cass. There spoke the spirit of Calisthenes; Nor could their care Remember he's a man, his flesh as soft
With richest cordials, for an hour or more, And penetrable as a girl's : we have seen him Recover life. wounded,
Cass. Knowing how much she loved,
For, when the first gust of her grief was past, A sword has cut him, a javelin pierced him, I entered, and with breath prepared did blow Water will drown him, fire burn him,
The dying sparks into a towering flame,