(navigation image)
Home American Libraries | Canadian Libraries | Universal Library | Community Texts | Project Gutenberg | Children's Library | Biodiversity Heritage Library | Additional Collections
Search: Advanced Search
Anonymous User (login or join us)
Upload
See other formats

Full text of "Richelieu; or, The conspiracy, a play in five acts. To which are added, historical odes on The last days of Elizabeth, Cromwell's dream, The death of Nelson"

CD 






■CD 



CO 



pl!Jlil!ip|l!l!<i!liif!?^ 



HANDBOLND 
AT THE 






UNIVERSITY OF 
TORONTO PRESS 




KICHELIEU: 



OK. 



T II E V N S P J \{ A V V 



a ^Jlap, 



rx FIVE ACTS. 



10 WHICH AKK ADUED. 

HISTOUICAL ODEJ5 

ON 

THK LAST DAYS OF ELIZA RKTH; 

C R O M ^V K L L'S I) R E .\ M ; 
THE DEATH OF NELi^OX. 

nv IKK .VT'THOR OF 1 MI', " LADY OF LYONS," 
" EUGENE AR.AM," &C. 






LONDON 



PrjHJSlIKl) BY .^\UNDERS AND OTLKV, 
CUNDUIT STREKT. 

1839. 



pp 



" I<e Comte ile Soissoiis, et lo Due de bouillon, avaient uno bonne armce, et ils savaient 
laconduire; et p:iur pins graiide suretd, tandis que cettc armee dcvait s'avanccr, on devait 

assa^sinrr le Cardinal et faire soiilever Paris Les Conjures faisaient un traitt? 

avec I'Espague jionr intmduire des troupes en France, et pour y metire tout en coufusiim dans 
une Keg<'nce qu'on croyait prochaine, et dont cliacun esperait pvofiter .... Richelieu 
avail perdu touto sa faveur, et ne conscrvait que ravaula^^e d'etre necessaire. Le bonlieur du 
Cardinal roulat eiicnre que le complot fut decouvert, et qn'une eopie du traite lui tombat entru 
les mains." — Vutliire, Hi>t. Orn. 



londou. I'liniid b\ \V (lcwes and Sonk, Sun.lord Street. 



TO TllK MARQUIS OF LANSDOWNK. K.G., 

THIS DRAMA AND THE ACCOMPANYING ODES 

ARE INSCRIBED, IN TRIBLTK 

TO THE TALENTS WHICH COMMWl). 

AND 

THE Ql'Al.nir.S WHICH ENDEAR. 

RESPECT. 



London, Marrh 5, 1839. 



}^ R E 1 A C E T O lU C H E E I E U 



Thk administration of Cardinal Richelieu, wlioin 
(despite all his darker qualities) Voltaire and 
History justly consider the true architect of the 
French monarchy, and the great parent of French 
civilization, is characterised by features alike 
tragic and comic. A weak king — an ambitious 
favourite ; a despicable conspiracy against the 
minister, nearly always associated with a danger- 
ous treason against the State — These, with little 
variety of names and dates, constitute the eventful 
cycle through which, with a dazzling ease, and an 
arrogant confidence, the great luminary fulfilled 
its destinies. Blent together, in startling contrast, 
we see the grandest achievements and the pettiest 
agents ; — the spy — the mistress — the capuchin ; — 
the destruction of feudalism ; — the humiliation of 
Austria; — the dismend)erment of Spain. 

Richelieu himself is still what he was in his 



viii PREFACE. 

own day — u. man of two characters. If, on the 
one hand, he is justly represented as intiexible 
aud vindictive, crafty and unscrupulous ; so, on 
the other, it cannot be denied that he was placed 
in times in v»hich the loiia inipunitv of everv 
license required stern examples — that he was 
beset by perils and intrigues, which gave a certain 
excuse to the subtlest inventions of self-defence— 
that his ambition was inseparably connected with 
a passionate love for the glory of his country — 
and that, if he was her dictator, he was not less 
her benefactor. It has been fairly remarked, bv 
the most impartial historians, that he was no less 
generous to merit than severe to crime — that, in 
the various departments of the State, the Army, 
and the Cliurch, he selected and distinguished the 
ablest aspirants— that the wars which he con- 
ducted were, for the most part, essential to the 
preservation of France, and Europe itself, from 
the formidable encroachments of the Austrian 
House— that, in spite of those wars, the people 
were not oppressed with exorbitant imposts — 
and that he left the kingdom he had governed 
in a more flourishing and vigorous state than at 
any former period of the French history, or at the 
decease of Louis XIV. 



PREFACE. ix 

Thc cabals formed against this great statesman 
were not carried on by tlie patriotism of public 
virtue, or the emulation of equal talent: they were 
but court strusisiles, in which the most worthless 
agents liad recourse to the most desperate means. 
In each, as I iiave before observed, we see com- 
bined the twofold attempt to murder the minister 
and to betray the country. Such, then, are the 
agents, and such the designs, with which truth, in 
the Drama as in History, requires us to contrast the 
celebrated Cardinal ; — not disguising his foibles or 
his vices, but not unjust to the grander qualities 
(especially the love of country), by which they 
were often dignified, and, at times, redeemed. 

The historical drama is the concentration of 
historical events. In the attempt to place upon 
the stage the picture of an era, that license with 
dates and details, which Poetry permits, and which 
the hidiest authorities in the Drama of France 
herself, have sanctioned, has been, though not un- 
sparingly, indulged. The conspiracy of the Due 
de Bouillon is, for instance, amalgamated with the 
denouement of The Day <>f Dupes ;* and circum- 

* Lc Cardinal se croit perdu, et prepare sa retraite. Ses amis lui 
conseillent de tenter enfin aupres du roi un nouvel effort. Le 
Cardinal va trouver le roi a Versailles. Le Roi qui avail sacrifi^ son 
Ministre par faiblesse, se remit par faililesse entre ses mains, et il 

C 



X PREFACE. 



Stances connected with the treason of Cinq Mars 
(whose brilliant youth and gloomy catastrophe 
tend to subvert poetic and historic justice, by se- 
ducing us to forget his base ingratitude and his 
perfidious apostacy) are identified with the fate of 
the earlier favourite Baradas,* whose sudden rise 
and as sudden fall passed into a proverb. I ought 
to add, that the noble romance of Cinq Mars sug- 
gested one of the scenes in the fifth act; and that 
for the conception of some portion of the intritrue 
connected with De Maupratand Julie, I am, with 
great alterations of incident, and considerable if 
not entire reconstruction of character, indebted 
to an early and admirable novel by the author of 
Picciola.'f 

London, March, 1839. 

lui abandonne ceux qui I'avaient perdu. Ce jour qui est encore a 
present appelle la Journee des Dupes, fut celui du pouvoir absolu du 
Cardinal. — Voltaire Hist. Gen, 

* En six mois il (le Roi) fit (Baradas) premier Eaiyer, premier 
Gentilhomme de la chambre, Capitaine de St. Germain, et Lieu- 
tenant de roi, en Champagne. En moins de temps encore, on lui 
Ota tout, et des debris de sa grandeur, a peine lui resta-t-il de quoi 
payer ses dettes : de sorte que pour signifier une grande fortune dis- 
sipt^e aussi qu'acquise on disoit en commun proverbe Fortmxe de 
Baradas. — A nquetil. 

t It may be as well, however, to caution the English reader against 
some of the impressions which the eloquence of both the writers I 
refer to are calculated to leave. They have exaggerated the more 
evil, and have kept out of sight the nobler, qualities of the Cardinal. 



PERSONS OF THE DRAMA, 

AS PERFORMED AT THE THEATRE-ROYAL, COVENT-6 ARDEN, 

THURSDAY, MARCH 7, 1839. 



Men. 

Louis the Thirteenth . . Mr. Elton. 

Gaston, Duke of Orleans, brother to 

Louis XIII. . . . Mr. Diddear. 

Baradas, Favourite of the King^ first 
gentleman of thp Chamber, Premier 
Ecuyer, ^c. . . . Mr. Warde. 

Cardinal Richelieu . . . Mr. Macready. 

The Chevalier de Mauprat . . Mr. Anderson. 

The Sieur de Beringhen (in attendance 

on the King* one of the Conspirators) Mr. Vining. 

Joseph, a Capuchin, Richelieii's confidant Mr. Phelps. 

Huguet, an officer of Richelieu* s household 

guard — a Spy . . . Mr. George Bennett. 

Francois, ^r.y< Page to Richelieu . Mr. Howe. 

First Courtier . , . Mr. Roberts. 

Captain of the Archers : . Mr. Matthews. 

First, ] (Mr. Tilbury. 

Second,} Secretaries of State . . <Mr. Yarnold. 

1 i 

Third J [Mr. Payne. 

Governor of the Bastile . .Mr. Waldron, 

Gaoler . . . . Mr. Ayliffe.. 

Courtiers, Pages, Conspirators, Officers, Soldiers, S^c, 

Women. 

Julie de Mortemar, a7i Orphan^ Ward to 

Richelieu . . . Miss Helen Faucit. 

Marion de Lorme, Mistress to Orleans, 

but in Richelieu's pay , , Miss Charles. 

* Properly speaking, the King's First Valet de Chambre, a post of great im- 
portance at that time. 



NOTE. 



The lengll. of the Play necessarily requires curtailments on the Stage— the 
pru.cipal of which are specified (as they occur) in marginal notes. Many of 
tiie passages thus omitted, however immaterial to the audience, must obviously 
he such as the reader would be least inclined to dispense with— viz., those which, 
without being absolutely essential to the business of the Stage, contain either 
tlu' subtler strokes of character, or the more poetical embellishments of de- 
scription. 



RICHELIEU: 



OR, 



THE C N S P [ R A C ^ 



ACT I 

ffivit Sai). 
SCENE I. 



A room iJi the houxe of Marion de Lorme ; a table tovnrds 
the front of the stage (with wine, frnits, Sfc), at which are 
seated Baradas, Four Courtiers, splendidly dressed in the 
costume o/" 1641-2; — the Duke of Orleans reclining on <i 
large faiiteuil ; — Marion de Lorme, standing at the back of' 
his chair, offers him a goblet, and (hen retires. At another 
table, De Beringhen, De Mauprat, playing at dice ; other 
Courtiers, of inferior rayik to those at the table of the Dukr, 
looking on. 

ORLEANS (drinking). 

Hkre's to our enterprise ! — 

BARADAS (glancing at Marion). 

Hush, Sir !— 

ORLEANS (aside). 

Nay, Count, 
Vou may trust her; she doats on me; no Fiouse 
So safe as Marion's.* At our stateher homes 
The very walls do play tlie eaves-dro-pper. 
There's not a sunheam creeping o'er our floors 
But seems a glance from that malignant eye 
Which reigns o'er F'rance ; our fatal greatness lives 
]n the sharp glare of one relentless day. 
liut Richelieu's self forgets to fear the sword 
I'he myrtle hides; and Marion's silken robe 10 

Casts its kind charity o'er fiercer sins 
Than those which haunt the rosy path between 

* Omitted in re; rese:jtation, from •• At our statelier homes," line 3, to the end 
of speech lire 13. 



2 RICHELIEU ; [act i. 

The lip and eye of beauty. — Oh, no house 
So safe as Marion's. 

BARADAS. 

Still, we have a secret, 
And oil and water — woman and a secret — 
Are hostile properties, 

ORLEANS. 

Well — Marion, see 
How the play prospers yonder. 

Marion goes to the next table, looks on for a few moments, 

then Exit. 

Bar ADAS {producing a parchment). 

I have now 
All the conditions drawn ; it only needs 
Our signatures : upon receipt of this, 

(Whereto is joined the schedule of our treaty 20 

With tlie Count- Duke,*' the Richelieu of the Escurial,) 
Bouillon will join his army with the Spaniard, 
March on to Paris, — there, dethrone the King : 
You will be Regent ; I, and ye, my Lords, 
Form the new Council. So much for the core 
Of our great scheme. 

ORLEANS. 

But Richelieu is an Argus ; 
One of his hundred eyes will light upon us. 
And then — good bye to life. 

BARADAS. 

To gain the prize 
We must destroy the Argus : — ay, my Lords, 
The scroll the core, but blood must fill the veins, 30 

Of our design ; — while this despatched to Bouillon, 
Richelieu despatched to Heaven ! — The last my charge ! 
Meet here to morrow night. You, Sir, as first 
In honour and in hope, meanwhile select 
Some trusty knave to bear the scroll to Bouillon ; 
Midst Richelieu's foes /'// find some desperate hand 
To strike for vengeance, while we stride to power. 

ORLEANS. 

So be it ; — to-morrow, midnight. — Come, my Lords. 

Exeunt Orleans, and the Courtiers in his train. Those at 

the other table rise, salute Orleans, and re-seat themselves. 

* Olivares, Minister of Spain. 



SCENE i] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 3 

DE BERINGHEN. 

Double the stakes. 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Done. 

DE BERINGHEN. 

Bravo ; faith it shames me 
To bleed a purse already in extremis. 40 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Nay, as you've had the patient to yourself 
*^o long, no other doctor should despatch it. 

De Mauprat throws and loses. 

OMNES. 

Lost ! Ha, ha — poor De Mauprat ! 

DE BERINGHEN. 

One throw more ? 

DE MAUPRAT. 

No ; I am bankrupt (pushiyig gold). There jjoes all — except 
My honour and my sword. (They rise.) 

DE BERINGHEN. 

Long cloaks and honour 
Went out of vogue together, when we found 
We got on much more rapidly without them ; 
The sword, indeed, is never out of fashion, — 
The devil has care of that. 

First gamester. 

Ay, take the sword 
To Cardinal Richelieu : — he gives gold for steel, 50 

When worn by brave men. 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Richeheu ! 
DE BERINGHEN (to Barada.i). 

At that name 
He changes colour, bites his nether lip. 
Ev'n in his brightest moments whi>>per '■ Richelieu," 
And you cloud all his sunshine. 

BARADAS. 

I have mark'*d it. 
And I will learn the wherefore. 

B? 



4 RICHELIEU; [act i. 

DE MAUPRAT. 

The Egyptian 
Dissolved her richest jewel in a draught : 
Would I could so melt time and all its treasures, 
And drain it thus (drinking). 

DE BERINGHEN. 

Come, gentlemen, what say ye, 
A walk on the Parade ? 

OMNES. 

Ay ; come, De Mauprat. 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Pardon me ; we shall meet again ere nightfall. 60 

BARADAS. 

J'U stay and comfort Mauprat. 

DE BERINGHEN. 

Comfort ! — when 
We gallant fellows have run out a friend 
There's nothing left — except to run him through ! 
There's the last act of friendship. 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Let me keep 
Thaf favour in reserve ; in all beside 
Your most obedient servant. 

Exeunt De Beringhen, Sfc. Manent De Mauprat and 

Baradas. 

BARADAS. 

You have lost — 
Yet are not sad. 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Sad ! — Life and gold have wings. 
And must fly one day :— open, then, their cages 
And wish them merry. 

BARADAS. 

You're a strange enigma : — 
Fiery in war — and yet to glory lukewarm ; — 70 

All mirth in action — in repose all gloom 

These are extremes in which the unconscious heart 

Betrays the fever of deep-fix'd disease. 

Confide in me ! our young days roU'd together 

In the same river, glassing the same stars 

That smile i' the heaven of hope ; — alike we made 

Briffht-vvinged steeds of our unform'd chimeras. 



scKNK i] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 5 

Spurring the fancies upward to the air. 

Wherein we shaped fair castles from the cloud. 

Fortune of late has sever'd us — and led 80 

Me to the rank of Courtier, Count, and Favourite, — 

You to the titles of the wildest grallant 

And bravest knio^ht in France ; — are you content ? 

No ; — trust in nie — some gloomy secret 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Ay:- 
A secret that doth haunt me, as, of old. 
Men were possess'd of fiends ! — Where'er I turn. 
The grave yawns dark before me ! — I will trust you ; — 
Hating the Cardinal, and beguiled by Orleans, 
You know I join'd the Languedoc revolt — 
Was captured — sent to the Bastile 

BARADAS. 

But shared 90 

rhe general pardon, which the Duke of Orleans 
Won for himself and all in the revolt, 
Who but obey'd his orders. 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Note the phrase ; — 
Obey'd his orders." Well, when on my way 
To join the Duke in Languedoc, I (then 
Tile down upon my lip — less man than boy) 
Leading young valoiirs — reckless as myself, 
Seized on the town of Faviaux, and displaced 
The Royal banners for the Rebel. Orleans, 
(Never too daring,) when I reach'd the camp, 100 

Blamed me for acting — mark — uithout his orders : 
Upon this quibble Richelieu razed niy name 
Out of the general pardon. 

BARADAS. 

Yet released you 
From the Bastile 

DE MAUPRAT. 

To call me to his presence, 
And thus address me: — " You have seized a town 
Of France, without the orders of your leader. 
And for this treason, but one sentence — Death." 

UARADAS. 

Death ! 



f, RICHELIEU; [act i. 

DE MAUPRAT. 

" I have pity on your youth and birth, 
Nor wish to glut the headsman ; — ^join your troop, 
Now on the march against the Spaniards ; — change 110 

The traitor's scaffold for the soldier's grave ; — 
Your memory stainless — they who shared your crime 
Exil'd or dead — your king shall never learn it." 

BARADAS. 

tender pity ! — O most charming prospect ! 
Blown into atoms by a bomb, or drill'd 
Into a cullender by gunshot ! — Well ? — 

DE MAUPRAT. 

You have heard if I fought bravely. — Death became 

Desired as Daphne by the eager Day god. 

Like him I chas'd the nymph — trf grasp the laurel ! 

1 could not die ! 

BARADAS. 

Poor fellow ! 

DE MAUPRAT. 

When the Cardinal 120 

Review'd the troops — his eye met mine ; — he frown'd, 
Summon'd me forth — "How's this?" quoth he; "you have 

shunn'd 
The sword — beware the axe! — 'twill fall one day !" 
He left me thus — we were recall'd to Paris, 
And — you know all ! 

BARADAS. 

And, knowing this, why halt you, 
Spell'd by the rattle-snake, — while in the breasts 
Of your firm friends beat hearts, that vow the death 
Of your grim tyrant ? — Wake ! — Be one of us ; 
The time invites — the King detests the Cardinal, 
Dares not disgrace — but groans to be deliver'd 130 

Of that too great a subject — ^joiu your friends. 
Free France, and save yourself. , 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Hush ! Richelieu bears 
A charmed life : — to all, who have braved his power. 
One common end — the block. 

BARADAS. 

Nay, if he live. 
The block your doom ; — 



SCENE i] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 7 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Better the victim, Count, 
Than the assassin. — France requires a RieheHeu, 
But does not need a Mauprat. Truce to this ; — 
All time one midnight, where my thoughts are spectres. 
What to me fame ? — VVliat love ? — 

BARADAS. 

Yet dost thou love not ? 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Love i* — I am young 

BARADAS. 

And Julie fair! (Aside) It is so, HO 
Upon the margin of the grave — his hand 
Would pluck the rose that I would win and wear ! 
(Aloud)* Thou lovest — 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Who, lonely in the midnight tent. 
Gazed on the watch-fires in the sleepless air. 
Nor chose one star amidst the clustering hosts 
To bless it in the name of some fair face 
Set in his spirit, as that star in Heaven ? 
For our divine Aftections, like the Spheres, 
Move ever, ever musical. 

BARADAS. 

You speak 
As one who fed on poetry. 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Why, man, 150 

The thoughts of lovers stir with poetry 
As leaves with summer-wind. — The heart that loves 
Dwells in an Eden, hearing angel-lutes, 
As Eve in the First Garden. Hast thou seen 
My Julie, and not felt it hencefortii dull 
To live in the common world — and talk in words 
That clothe the feelings of the frigid herd ? — 
Upon the perfumed pillow of her lips — 
As on his native bed of roses flush'd 

VVith Paphian skies — Love smiling sleeps : — Her voice I GO 
The blest interpreter of thoughts as pure 
As virgin wells wiiere Dian takes delight. 
Or Fairies dip their changelings ! — In the maze 
Of her harmonious bea-jties — ]\Iodesty 

* Omitted iarepiesentation, from line 142 to line 176. 



8 RICHELIEU ; [act i. 

(Like some severer Grace that leads the choir 

Of her sweet sisters) every airy motion 

Attunes to such chaste charm, that Passion holds 

His burning breath, and will not with a sigh 

Dissolve the spell that binds him ! — Oh those eyes 

That woo the earth — shadowing more soul than lurks 1 70 

Under the lids of Psyche ! — Go ! — thy lip 

Curls at the purfled phrases of a lover — 

Love thou, and if thy love be deep as mine. 

Thou wilt not laugh at poets. 

BARADAS (aside). 

With each word 
Thou vvak'st a jealous demon in my heart. 
And my hand clutches at my hilt — 

DE MAUPRAT (gaily). 

No more ! — 
I love ! — Your breast holds both my secrets ; — Never 
Unbury either ! — Come, while yet we may. 
We'll bask us in the noon of rosy life : — 

Lounge through the gardens, — flaunt it in the taverns, — 180 
Laugh, — game, — drink, — feast : — If so confined my days. 
Faith, ril enclose the nights. — Pshaw ! not so grave; 
I'm a true Frenchman ! — Vive la bagatelle ! 

(As they are going out, Enter Huguet, and four arque- 

busiers.) 

HUGUET. 

Messire De Mauprat, — I arrest you ! — Follow- 
To the Lord Cardinal. 

DE MAUPRAT. 

You see, my friend, 
I'm out of my suspense ! — the tiger's play'd 
Long enough with his prey. — Farewell ! — Hereafter 
Say, when men name me, " Adrien de Mauprat 
Lived without hope, and pei-ished without fear !" 

[Exeunt De Mauprat, Huguet, SfC. 

BARADAS. 

Farewell ! — 1 trust for ever ! I desigru'd thee 

For Richelieu's murderer but, as well his martyr ! 190 

In childhood you the stronger — and I cursed you ; 
In youtii the fairer — and I cursed you still; 
And now my rival ! — While the name of Julie 
Hung on thy lips— -I smiled — for then I saw 



SCENE II.] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 

In my mind's eye, the cold and grinning Death 

Hang o'er thy head the pall ! — Ambition, Love, 

Ye twin-born stars of daring destinies. 

Sit in my house of Life ! — By the King's aid 

I will be Julie's husband — in despite 200 

Of my Lord Cardinal — By the King's aid 

I will be minister of France — in spite 

Of my Lord Cardinal ; — and then — what then ? 

The King loves Julie — feeble Prince — false master — 

(Producing and gazing on the parchment.) 

Then, by the aid of Bouillon, and the Spaniard, 

I will dethrone the King; and all — ha! — ha! — 

All, in despite of my Lord Cardinal. \^Exit. 



SCENE IL 



A room in the Palais Cardinal, the walls hung with arras. 
A large screen in one corner. A table covered with books, 
papers, ^c. A rude clock in a recess. Busts, statues, 
bookcases, iceapons of different periods, and banners sus- 
jyended over Richelieu s chair. 

R ichelieu. — Josej)h. 

RICHELIEU. 

And so you think this new conspiracy 
The craftiest trap yet laid for the old fox ? 



Fox !— Well, I like the nickname ! What did Plutarch 210 
Say of the Greek Lysander ? 

JOSEPH. 

I forget. 

RICHELIEU. 

That where the lion's skin fell short, he eked it 
Out with the fox's ! A great statesman, Joseph, 
That same Lysander! 

JOSEPH. 

Orleans heads the traitors. 

RICHELIEU. 

A verv wooden head then ! Well ? 



10 RICHELIEU ; [act i. 

JOSEPH. 

The favourite, 
Count Baradas — 

RICHELIEU. 

A weed of hasty growth ; 
First gentleman of the chamber — titles, lands. 

And the King's ear ! — it cost me six long winters j 

To mount as high, as in six little moons 

This painted lizard But I hold the ladder, 220 

And when I shake — he falls ! What more ? 

JOSEPH. 

A scheme 
To make your orphan- ward an instrument 
To aid your foes. You placed her with the Queen, 
One of the royal chamber, — as a watch 
r th' enemy's quarters — 

RICHELIEU. 

And the silly child 
Visits me daily, — calls me " Father," — prays 
Kind heaven to bless me — And for all the rest, 
As well have placed a doll about the Queen ! 
She does not heed who frowns — who smiles ; with whom 
The King confers in whispers; notes not when 230 

Men who last week were foes, are found in corners 
Mysteriously affectionate ; words spoken 
Within closed doors she never hears ; — by chance 
Taking the air at keyholes — Senseless puppet ! 
No ears — nor eyes ! — and yet she says — " She loves me !" 
Go on 

JOSEPH. 

Your ward has charm'd the King 



RICHELIEU. 

Out on you ! 
Have I not, one by one, from such fair shoots 
Piuck'd the insidious ivy of his love ? 
And shall it creep around my blossoming tree 
Where innocent thoughts, like happy birds, make music 240 
That spirits in Heaven might hear ? — They're sinful too. 
Those passionate surfeits of the rampant flesh, 
The Church condemns them; and to us, my Jo.seph, 
The props and pillars of the Church, most hurtful. 



;cBNE n] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 11 

Fhe King is weak — whoever the King loves 

Must rule the King ; the lady loves another, 

Fhe other rules the lady — thus we're balked 

3f our own proper sway — The King must have 

S^o eoddess but the State : — the State — That's Richelieu ! 

JOSEPH. 

Fhis not the worst ; — Louis, in all decorous, 250 

\nd deeming you her least compliant guardian, 
kVould veil his suit by marriage with his minion, 
^'our prosperous foe, Count Baradas I 

RICHELIEU. 

Ha! ha! 
[ have another bride tor Baradas. 

JOSEPH. 

^'ou, my Lord ? 

RICHELIEU. 

Ay — more faithful than the love 
3f fickle woman : — when the head lies lowliest, 
[[Clasping him fondest ; — Sorrow never knew 
>o sure a soother, — and her bed is stainless ! 

JOSEPH (aside). 

[f of the grave he speaks, I do not wonder 
I'hat priests are bachelors ! 

Enter Franqois. 

FRANCOIS. 

Mademoiselle De Mortemar. 200 

RICHELIEU. 

Most opportune — admit her. \^Exit Francois. 

In my closet 
You'll find a rosary, Joseph ; ere you tell 
rhree hundred beads, I'll summon you. — Stay, Joseph ; — 
I did omit an Ave in my matins, — 
.A. grievous fault ; — atone it for me, Joseph ; 
There is a scourge within ; I am weak, you strong, 
It were but charity to take my sin 
On such broad shoulders. Exercise is healthful. 

JOSEPH. 

1 I guilty of such criminal presumption 

As to mistake myself for you — No, never ! 270 

Think it not ! — {Aside) Troth, a pleasajit invitation ! 

[Exit Joseph. 



12 RICHELIEU; [act i 

Enter Julie de Mortemar. 

RICHELIEU. 

That's my sweet Julie ! — why, upon this face 
Blushes such daybreak, one might swear the Morning 
Were come to visit Tithon. 

JULIE {placing herself at his feet). 
Are you gracious ? — 
May I say " Father?" 

RICHELIEU. 

Now and ever ! 

JULIE. 

Father 1 
A sweet word to an orphan. 

RICHELIEU. 

No ; not orphan 
While Richelieu lives ; thy father loved me well ; 
My friend, ere I had flatterers (now, I'm great. 
In other phrase, I'm friendless) — he died young 
In years, not service, and bequeath'd thee to me ; 280 

And thou shalt have a dowry, girl, to buy 
Thy mate amidst the mightiest. Drooping ? — sighs ? — 
Art thou not happy at the court? 

JULIE. 

Not often. 

RICHELIEU (aside). 

Can she love Baradas ? — Ah ! at thy heart 

There's what can smile and sigh, blush and grow pale. 

All in a breath ! — Tliou art admired — art young ; 

Does not his Majesty commend thy beauty — 

Ask thee to sinor to him? — and swear such sounds 

Had smooth'd the brows of Saul? — 

JULIE. 

He's very tiresome, 
Our worthy King. 

RICHELIEU. 

Fie ; kings are never tiresome, 290 

Save to tlieir ministers. — What courtly gallants 
Charm ladies most? — De Sourdiac, Longueville, or 
The favourite Baradas ? 

JULIE. 

A smileless man — - 
I fear, and shun him. 



SCENE II. ] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 13 

RICHELIEU. 

Yet he courts thee ? 

JULIE. 

Then 
He is more tiresome than liis Majesty. 

RICHELIEU. 

Right, girl, shun Baradas. — Yet of these flowers 
Of France, not one, in whose more honied breath 
Tliy heart hears Summer whisper ? 

Enter Hugxiet. 

HUGUET. 

The ChevaUer 
De Mauprat waits below. 

JULIE {starting up). 
De Mauprat ! 

RICHELIEU. 

Hem ! 

He has been tiresome too ! — Anon, [Exit Huguet. 

JULIE. 

What doth he ?— 300 

I mean — I — Does your Eminence — that is — 
Know you Messire de Mauprat i* 

RICHELIEU. 

Well ! — and you 

Has he address'd you often ? 

JULIE. 

Often! No- 
Nine times; — nay, ten; — the last time, by the lattice 
Of the great staircase. — (/;« a melancholy tone) The Court 
sees him rarely. 

RICHELIEU. 

A bold and forward royster ? 

JULIE. 

He ^ — nay, modest. 
Gentle, and sad methinks. 

RICHELIEU. 

Wears gold and azure ? 

JULIE. 

No ; sable. 



14 RICHELIEU; [act i. 

RICHELIEU. 

So vou note his colours, Julie ? 
Shame on you, child, look loftier. By the mass 
I have business with this modest gentleman. 310 

JULIE. 

You're angry with poor Julie. There's no cause. 

RICHELIEU. 

No cause — you hate my foes ? 

JULIE. 

I do! 

RICHELIEU. 

Hate Mauprat? 

JULIE. 

Not Mauprat. No, not Adrien, father. 

RICHELIEU. 

Adrien ! 
Familiar ! — Go, child ; no, — not that way ; — wait 
In the tapestry chamber ; I will join you, — go. 

JULIE. 

His brows are knit ; — I dare not call him father ! 
But I must speak — Your Eminence — 

RICHELIEU {sternly). 

Well, girl ! 

JULIE. 

Nay 
Smile on me — one smile more; there, now I'm happy. 
Do not rank Mauprat with your foes ; he is not, 
I know he is not ; he loves France too well. 320 

RICHELIEU. 

Not rank Dc Mauprat with my foes ? So be it. 
I'll blot him from that list. 

JULIE. 

That's my own father. 

[Exit Julie. 
RiciiKLiKU (riiiging a small bell on the table) 
Huguet ! 

Enter Huguet. 
De Mauprat struggled not, nor murmur'd ? 



scBNK 11. ] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 15 

HUGUET. 

No ; proud and passive. 

RICHKLIKU. 

Bid him enter. — Hold : 
Look that he hide no weapon. Humph, despair 
Makes nclims sometimes victors. When he has enter'd, 
GHde round unseen ; — place thyself yonder (pointing to the 

screen) ; watch him; 
If he show violence — (let me see thycarbme; 
So, a good weapon ;) — if he play the lion. 
Why — the dog's death. 

HUGUET. 

I never miss my mark. .330 

Exit Hiiguet ; Richelieu seats himself at the table, and 
slowly arranges the papers before him. Enter De Mavprat, 
preceded by Huguet, who then retires behind the screen. 

RICHELIEU. 

Approach, Sir. — Can you call to mind the hour. 
Now three years since, when in this room, methinks. 
Your presence honour'd me ? 



One of my most- 



DE MAUPRAT. 

It is, my Lord, 



RICHELIEU (drily). 

Delightful recollections.* 

DE MAUPRAT (aside). 

St. Denis! doth he make a jest of axe 
And headsman ? 

RICHELIEU (sternly). 

I did then accord you 
A mercy ill requited — you still live ^. 

DE MAUPR.\T. 

I'o meet death face to face at last, f 

RICHELIEU. 

Your words 
Are bold. 

* There are many anecdotes of the ironj, often so terrible, in which Riche- 
lieu inilulged. But he had a love for humour in its more hearty and genial shape. 
He would send for Boisrobett *' to make him laugh," — and grave ii.inisters aud 
magnates waited in the aiite-room, while the great Cardinal listened and re- 
sponded to the sallies of the lively wit. 

t Omitted in representation, from line 338 to line 361. 



16 RICHELIEU ; [act i. 

DE MA U PR AT. 

My deeds have not belied them. 

RICHELIEU. 

Deeds ! 
O miserable delusion of man's pride ! 340 

Deeds ! cities sack'd, fields ravaged, hearths profaned, 
Men butcherM ! In your hour of doom behold 
The deed.v you boast of! From rank showers of blood, 
And the red light of blazing roofs, you build 
The Rainbow Glory, and to shuddering Conscience 
Cry, — Lo, the Bridge to Heaven ! 

DE MAUPRAT. 

If war be sinful, 
Your hand the gauntlet cast. 

RICHELIEU. 

It was so. Sir. 
Note the distinction : — I vveigh'd well the cause 
Which made the standard holy ; raised the war 
But to secure the peace. France bled — I groan'd ; 350 

But lookd beyond ; and, in the vista, saw 
France saved, and I exulted. You — but you 
Were but the tool of slaughter — knowing nought. 
Foreseeing nought, nought hoping, nought lamenting, 
And for nought fit, — save cutting throats for hire. 
Deeds, marry, deeds ! 

DE MAUPRAT. 

If you would deign to speak 
Thus to your armies ere they march to battle, 
Perchance your Eminence might have the pain 
or the throat-cutting to yourself. 

RICHELIEU (aside). 

He has wit. 
This Mauprat — (Aloud) — Let it pass ; there is against you 360 
What you can less excuse. Messire de Mauprat, 
Doom'd to sure death, how hast thou since consumed 
The time allotted thee for serious thouffht 
And solemn penitence ? 

DE MAUPRAT (embarrassed). 
The time, my Lord ? 

RICHELIEU. 

Is not the question plain .'' I'll answer for thee. 

Thou hast sought nor priest nor shrine ; no sackcloth chafed 



scKNE II ] OR THE C'OXSPIKACY. IT 

Thy delicate flesh. The rosary and the death's-head 

Have not, with pious meditation, purored 

Earth from tlie carnal jjaze. What thou hast not done 

Brief told ; what done, a volume ! Wild debauch, ;i70 

Turbulent riot : — for the morn the dice-box — 

Noon claim'dthc duel — and the ni^ht the wassail ; 

These, your most holv, pure preparatives 

For death and judgment. Do I wron^ vou. Sir? 

DE MAUPRAT. 

I was not always thus : — if changed my nature. 
Blame that, which changed my fate. — Alas, niv Lord. 
There is a brotlierhood which calm-eyed Reason* 
Can wot not of betwixt Despair and Mirth. 
My birth-place mid the vines of sunny Provence, 
Perchance the stream that sparkles in my veins 380 

Came from that wine of passionate life which, erst, 
Glow'd in the wild heart of the Troubadour: 
And danger, which makes steadier courage wary. 
But fevers me with an insane delight ; 
As one of old who on the mountain-crass 
Caught madness from a Maenads haunting eves. 
W^ere you. my Lord, — whose path imperial power, 
And the grave cares of reverent wisdom oruard 
From all that tempts to folly meaner men, — 
Were you accursed with that w hich you inflicted — "90 

By bed and board, doggd by one ghastly spectre — 
The while within you youth beat high, and Ufe 
Grew loveUer from the neighbouring frown of death — 
The hf^art no bud, nor fruit— save in those seeds 
Most worthless, which spring up, bloom, bear, and wither 
In the same hour — Were this your fate, perchance, 
Vou would have err'd like me ! 

RICHELIEU. 

I might, hke you. 
Have been a brawler and a reveller ; — not. 
Like you, a trickster and a thief. — 

DE MAUPRAT (advancing threateningly/). 

Lord Cardinal ! — 
I nsay those words ! — 

(Huguet deliberately raises the carbine). 

RICHELIEU {leaving his hand) 

Not quite so quick, friend Huguet : 100 
• Omi;te<l in representatiuD, from line .176 to S'i'J. 



18 RICHELIEU ; [act i. 

Messire de Mauprat is a patient man, 
And he can wait ! — 

You have outrun your fortune ; — 
I blame you not, that you would be a bego^ar — 
Each to his taste ! — But I do charge you. Sir, 
That, being V)eggar'd, you would coin false monies 
Out of that crucible, called debt. — To live 
On means not yours — be brave in silks and laces^ 
Gallant in steeds — splendid in banquets; — all 
Not ymirx — ungiven — unherited — unpaid for ; — 
Thix is to be a trickster ; and to filch 

Men's art and labour, which to them is wealth, 410 

Life, daily bread, — quitting^ all scores with — " Friend, 
You're troublesome ! " — Why this, forgive me. 
Is what — when done with a less dainty grace — 
Plain folks call " TheftV — You owe eight thousand pistoles. 
Minus one crown, two liards ! 

DE MAUPRAT {aside). 

The old conjuror ! — 
Sdeath, he'll inform me next how many cups 
I drank at dinner ! — 

RICHELIEU. 

This is scandalous, 

Shaming your birth and blood 1 tell you. Sir, 

That you must pay your debts. — 

DE MAUPRAT. 



With all my heart, 420 vl 

row, then, the monev ? a 

( 



My Lord. — Where shall I borrow, then, the money ? 

RICHELIEU (aside and laughing). 

A humorous dare-devil! — The very man 
To suit my purpose — ready, frank, and bold ! 

{Rising, and earnestly). 

Adricn do Mauprat, men have called me cruel ; — 

I am not ; — I am just ! — I found France rent asunder, — 

The rich men despots, and the poor banditti ; — 

Sloth in the mart, and schism within the temple; 

Hia wis festering to Ivobcllion ; and weak Laws 

Hotting away with rust in antique sheaths. — 

I have re-created France ; and, from the ashes 430 

Of the old feudal and decrepit carcase. 

Civilization on her luminous wings 

Soars, pho.'nix-like, to Jove ! — What was n)y art ? 



scKNE II.] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. l«j 

Genius, some say, — some. Fortune, — U'itchcraft some. 

Not so ; — my art was Justice ! — Force and Fraud 

Misname it cruelty — you shall confute theai ! 

My champion you ! — You met me as your foe. 

Depart my friend — ^'ou shall not die. — France needs you. 

You shall wipe otV all stains, — be rich, be honoured, 

Be crrcat. 

(De Mauprat falh on hix knre — Richelieu raises him.) 

I ask, Sir, in return, this hand, 440 

To gift it -with a bride, whose dower shall match, 
Yet not exceed, her beauty, 

DE MAl'PRAT. 

I, my Lord, — (hesitating) 
I have no wish to marry. 

RICHELIKIT. 

Surely, Sir, 
To die were worse. 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Scarcely ; the poorest coward 
Must die, — but knowingly to march to marriage — 
Mv Lord, it asks the couracje of a lion I 

RICHELIEU. 

Traitor, thou triflest with nie ! — I know all ! 
I hou hast dared to love my ward — my charge. 

DE MAUPRAT. 

As rivers 
May love the sunlight — basking in the beams. 
And hurrying on ! — 

RICHELIEU. 

Thou hast told her of thy love ? 450 

DE MAUPRAT. 

My Lord, if I had dared to love a maid. 

Lowliest in France, I would not so have wrong'd her, 

As bid her link rich life and virgin hope 

With one, the deathman's gripe might, from her side, 

Pluck at the nuptial altar. 

RICHELIEU. 

I believe thee ; 
Yet since she knows not of thy love, renounce her ; — 
Take life and fortune with another ! — Silent ? 

c 2 



20 RICHELIEU; [act i. 

TtK MAUPRAT. 

Your fate has been one triumph — You know not 

How bless'd a thing it was in my dark hour 

To nurse the one sweet thought you bid me banish. 460 

liOve hath no need of words; — nor less within 

That hohest temple — the heaven-builded soul — 

Breathes the recorded vow. — Base knight, — false lover 

Were he, who barter'd all, that brighten d grief, 

Or sanctified despair, for life and gold. 

Revoke your mercy; — I prefer the fate 

I look'd for ! 

RICHELIEU. 

Huguet ! to the tapestry chamber 
Conduct your prisoner. 

(To Mauprat.) 

You will tliere behold 
The executioner : — your doom be private — 
And Heaven have mercy on you I — 

DE MAUPRAT. 

When I'm dead, 470 

Tell her, I loved her. 

RICHELIEU. 

Keep such follies, Sir, 
For fitter cars; — go — 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Does he mock me ? 
Exeunt de Mauprat, Hiiguid. 

RICHELIEU. 

Joseph, 
Come forth. 

Enter Joseph. 

Methinks your cheek hath lost its rubies; 
I fear you have been too lavish of the flesh; 
The scourge is heavy. 

JOSEPH. 

Pray you, cliange the subject. 

RICHELIEU. 

You good men are so modest ! — Well, to business ! 
Go instantly — deeds — notaries ! — bid my stewards 
Arrange my house by the Luxembourg — my house 



SCENE n.] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 21 

No more ! — a bridal present to my ward, 
Who weds to-morrow. 

JOSEPH. 

Weds, with whom ? 

RICHELIEU. 



De Mauprai. 480 



JOSEPH. 



Penniless husband ! 



RICHELIEU. 

Bah ! the mate for beauty 
Should be a man, and not a money-chest ! 
Wlicn her brave sire lay on his bed of death, 
I vowd to be a father to his Julie : — 
And so he died — the smile upon his lips ! — 
And when I spared the life of her youn^ lover, 
Methoiiffht I saw that smile again! — Who else, 
Look you, in all the court — who else so well, 
IJrave. or supplant the favourite; — balk the King — 
Baffle their schemes ? — I have tried him : — He has honour 490 
And courage ; — qualities that ea(jle-])lume 
Men's souls, — and fit them for the ticrcest sun, 
\A'hich ever melted the weak wa.xen minds 
That ilutter in the beams of gaudy Power ! 
Besides, he has taste, this Mauprat: — When my play 
VVas acted to dull tiers of lifele>-5 gapers,* 
Who had no soul tor poetry, I saw him 
Applaud in the proper places : trust nie, Joseph, 
He is a man of an imcommon promise ! 

J O.SEP H. 

And yet your foe. 

KICHKLIEU. 

Have I not foes enow f - 500 

Great men gain doubly when ihey make foes friends. 

• The .Abbe .\rnaud tells i:s that the Queen was a little avenfreil o[i the 
('animal by the ill success of the tragi-come<ly of Miraine — more than susjiected 
to b« his own — thou-^h presenteii tu the world muler thi- foster name of Di-s- 
marets. Its rejiresentation (says Pelis^on) co>t liim 300,000 ciowns. He was 
so transported out of himself by the pe.formauct', that atone time he thrust 
Isis person half out of his box to show himself to the assembly ; at anotmr 
time he imposed silence on the audiei.ce that they mi;;lr not los,- " t/et eiidroils 
encore p/iis beiiux P' He sa'd afterwards to Desniiirels : " Kh bitMi. les Krai.c.us 
n'ai'.ront done jamais de g''Ut. lis n'out p;iseie chanues de Miraniil" Ar aud 
says pithily, " On ne pouvoit alors avoir (r^ulre satis'actiou des oft'cn-es d'un 
horame qui etoit maitre de tout, et redoutable a toiit le moude." Nevertheless 
bis style in prose, though not devoid of the ped>intic adectatioDS of the time, 
often rises iuto very uobie elixjuence. 



22 RICHELIEU; [act i. 

Remember my grand maxims : — First employ 
All methods to conciliate.* 

JOSEPH. 

Failinor these ? 

RICHELIEU {fiercely). 

All means to crush : as with the opening, and 
The clenching of this little hand, I will 
Crush the small venom of these stinging courtiers. 
So, so, we've baffled Baradas. 



Check the conspiracy 



r? 



JOSEPH. 

And when 

RICHELIEU. 



Check, check ? Full way to it. 
Let it bud, ripen, flaunt i' the day, and burst 
To fruit, — the Dead Sea's fruit of ashes; ashes 510 

Which I will scatter to the winds. 

Go, Joseph ; 
When you return, I have a feast for you ; 
1'he last great act of my great play : the verses, 
Methinks, are fine, — ah, very fine. — You write 
Verses If — {aside) such verses! — You have wit, discernment. 

JOSEPH {aside). 

Worse than the scourge ! Strange that so great a statesman 
Should be so bad a poet. 

RICHELIEU. 

What dost say ? 

* •' Vialart remarque une chose qui peut expliquer la conduite de Richelieu 
^^n d'autrus circoiistances : — c'est que lus seigneurs i qui leur uaissance ou leur 
raerito poiivoit permettre des pretensions, il avoit pour systeme, de leur accorder 
au-delil memo de leura droits et de leurs esp^rances, mais, aussi,une fois combles 
— si, au lieu de reconnoitre ses services ils se levoient centre lui, il les traitoit 
sans misericorile." — Aiiijudlit . See also the l^olitical Testament, and the Me- 
moires de Cardinal Richelieu, in Petitot's collection. 

f ''Tantot fanatique — tantot fourbe — fonder les rcligieuses de Calvaire — 
faire ds verg.'^ Thus speaks Voltaire of Father Joseph. His taleuts, and 
influence with Richelieu, grossly exaggerated in his own day, are now rightly 
estimatefl. 

•' C'e'oit en effet un homme iniatigable — portantdans les entreprises, I'activit^, 
la soupleSKe, I'opiniatrete propres a les faire r(;iissir." — Anquttil. He wrote a 
Latin poem, called '• La Turciade,'' in which he t-ought to excite the kingdoms 
of Christendom iigaintt the Turks. But the inspiration of TyrisBus was denied 
to Father .Joseph. 



SCENE I..] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 23 

JOSEPH. 

That it is strange so great a statesman should 
Be so sublime a poet. 

UlCHEHliU. 

Ah, you rogue ; 
Laws die, Books never. Of my ministry 520 

I am not vain ! but of my muse, 1 own it. 
Come, you shall hear tlie verses now {Takes up a MS.). 

JOSEPH. 

My Lord, 
The deeds, the notaries ! 

RICHELIEU. 

True, 1 pity you ; 
WnX business first, then pleasure. [Exit Joseph. 

RICHELIEU {.seats himself and reading). 

Ah, subUme ! 

Enter De Mawprat and Julie. 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Oh, speak, my Lord — I dare not think you mock me. 
And yet 

RICHELIEU. 

Hush — hush — This line must be consider'd ! 

JULIE. 

Are we not both your children ? 

RICHELIEU. 

What a couplet ! 



How now ! Oh ! Sir — you live ! 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Why, no, methinks, 
Elysium is not life ! 

JULIE. 

He smiles ! — vou smile, 
My father ! From my heart for ever, now, 530 

I'll blot the name «jf orphan ! 

kichi:lieu. 

Rise, my children. 
For ve are mine — mine bolli i — and in vour sweet 



24 RICHELIEU; [act i. 

And young delight — your love — (life's first-born glory) 
My own lost youth breathes musical ! 

DE MAUPRAT. 

I'll seek 
Temple and priest henceforward ; — were it but 
To learn Heaven's choicest blessings. 

RICHELIEU. 

Thou shalt seek 
Temple and priest right soon ; the morrow's sun 
Shall see across these barren thresholds pass 
The fairest bride in Paris. — Go, my children; 

Even / loved once ! Be lovers while ye may ! 540 

How is it with you. Sir ? You bear it bravely : 
You know, it asks the courage of a lion. 

[Exeunt Julie and De Mauprat. 

RICHKLIEU. 

Oh ! godlike Power I Woe, Rapture, Penury, Wealth, — 

Marriage and Death, for one infirm old man 

Through a great empire to dispense — withhold — 

As the will whispers ! And shall things — like motes 

That live in my daylight — lackies of court wages, 

Dwarfd starvelings — mannikins, upon whose shoulders 

The burthen of a province were a load 

More heavy than the globe on Atlas, — cast 550 

Lots for my robes and sceptre? France ! I love thee ! 

All Earth shall never pluck thee from my heart ! 

My mistress France — my wedded wife, — sweet France, 

Who shall proclaim divorce for thee and me! 

[Exit Richelieu. 



END OF ACT 1. 



scKNF. I.] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 25 



ACT II. 

^tconl] San. 
SCENE I. 

i sjj/t'tidid Ajjiirtmc/it in Mauprat s ncir House. Casements 
opening to the Gardens, beyond which the domes of the 
Luxembourg Palace. 

Enter Baradas. 

BARADAS. 

Mauprat's new home : — too splendid for a soldier ! 

But o'er his floors — the while I stalk — methinks 

My shadow spreads gigantic to the gloom 

The old rude towers of the Bastile cast far 

Along the smoothness of tlie jocund day. — 

Well, thou hast scaped the fierce caprice of Richelieu ; 

But art thou farther from the headsman, fool .'' 

Thy secret I have whispcr'd to the King ; — 

Thy marriage makes the King .thy foe. — Thou stand'st 

On the abyss — anil in the pool below 10 

I see a ghastly, headless phantom mirror'd ; — 

Thy likeness ere the marriage moon hath waned. 

Meanwhile — meanwhile — ha — ha, if thou art weddetl. 

Thou art not wived. 

Enter Mauprat (splendidly dressed). 

MAUPKAT. 

Was ever fate like mine ? 
So blest, and yet so wretched ! 

BARADAS. 

Joy, de Maupiat ! — 
\\h\ uhal a brow, man, for vour wcddins-dav ! 

DE MAUPRAT. 

^ -^t not! — Distraction I 

BARADAS. 

W hat your wife, a shrew 
Already .'' Courage, man — the romnion lot ' 



26 RICHELIEU; [act ii. 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Oh ! that she were less lovely, or less loved ! 

BARADAS. 

Riddles again ! 

DK MAUPRAT. 

You know, what chanced between '2(* 

The Cardinal and myself. 

BARADAS. 

This morning brought 
Your letter : — faith, a strange account ! I laugh'd 
And wept at once for gladness. 

dp: MAUPRAT. 

We were wed 
At noon ; — the rite perform'd, came hither ; — scarce 
Arrived, when 

BARADAS. 

Well ?— 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Wide flew the doors, and lo, 
Messire de Beringhen, and this epistle ! 

BARADAS. 

'Tis the King's hand ! — the royal seal ! 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Read — read — 

BARADAS {reading). 

"Whereas Adrien de Mauprat, Colonel and Chevalier in our 
armies, being already guilty of High Treason, by the seizure 
of our town of Faviaux, has presumed, without our knowledge, 
consent, or sanction, to connect himself by marriage with Julie 
de Mortemar, a wealthy orphan attached to the person of Her 
Majesty, without our knowledge or consent — We do hereby 
proclaim and declare the said marriage contrary to law. On 
penalty of death, Adrien de Mauy;rat will not communicate 
with the said Julie de Mortemar by word or letter, save in the 
])resence of our faithful servant the Sieur de Beringhen, and 
then with such respect and decorum as are due to a Demoi- 
selle attached to the Court of France, until such time as it maj 
suit our royal pleasure to confer with the Holy Church on the 
formal annulment of the marriage, and with our Council on' 
the punishment to be awarded to Messire de Mauprat, who is 



t 



F.NK 1.] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 27 

itioned for his own sake to preserve silence as to our in- 
junction, more especially to Mademoiselle de Mortemar. 
" Given under our hand and seal at the Louvre. 

"LOUIS." 

B.\KAD.\s {returning the letter). 

Amazement ! — Did not Richelieu say, the King 
Knew not your crime .'' 

DE MAUPRAT. 

He said so. 

B A RAD AS. 

Poor de Mauprat! — 
See you the snare, the vengeance worse than death, 30 

Of which you are the victim ? 

DE MAUPRAT. 



H 



a : 



BARADAS (aside). 

It works ! 
(Julie and De Berivghen in the Gardens.) 
You have not sought the Cardinal yet to 

DE MAUPRAT. 

No! 

Scarce yet my sense awaken'd from the shock ; 
Now I will seek him. 

BARAD.AS. 

Hold, beware ! — Stir not 
Till we confer again. 

DK MAUPRAT. 

Speak out, man ! — 

BARADAS. 

Hush ! 

Your wife! — De Beringhen I — Be on your guard — 
Obey the royal orders to the letter. 
I'll look around your palace. By my troth 
A princely mansion ! 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Stay— 

BARADAS. 

So new a bridegroutn 



28 RICHELIEU; [act n. 

Can want no visiters ; — Your servant^ Madam ! 40 

Oh ! happy pair — Oh, charming picture ! 

[Exit through a side-door. 

JULIE. 

Adrien, 
You left us suddenly — Are you not well? 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Oh, very well — that is — extremely ill ! 

JULIE. 

Ill, Adrien? (taking his hand). 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Not when I see thee. 

(He is about to lift her hand to his lips when De Beringhet 
coughs and pulls his mantle. Mauprat drops the hand anc 
walks away.) 

JULIE. 

Alas ! 
Should he not love me ? 

DE BERINGHEN (aside). 

Have a care, I must 
Report each word — each gesture to his Majesty. 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Sir, if you were not in his Majesty's service, 
You'd be the most officious, impudent, 
Damn'd busy-body ever interfering 
In a man's family alTairs. 

DE BERINGHEN. 

But as 50 

I do belong, Sir, to his Majesty — 

DE MAUPRAT. 

You're lucky ! — Stili, were we a story higher, 
'Twere prudent not to go too near the window. 

JULIE. 

Adrien, what have I done? Say, am I cl/aaged 
Since yesterday ? — or was it but for wealth. 
Ambition, life — that — that — you swore you loved me? 

DE MAUPRAT. 

I <\\»]\ iio ni.jcl ! — I do, indeed I do — 



srFVF. i] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 

DK BKRINGHKN {(isiilr). 

[ Not love her ! that were highly disrespect liil 

JULIF.. 

1 ou do — what, Adrien ? 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Oh ! I do, indeed — 



I do tiiink, that this weather is delighllul ! GO 

A charming day ! the sky is so serene ! 

And what a prospect ! — (to I)c Beringhen) Oh ! you Popinjay ! 

JULIE. 

He jests at nie ! — he mocks me ! — yet I love him, 
And every look becomes the lips we love ! 

rhaps I am too grave ? — You laugh at Julie; 

laughter please you. welcome be the music ! 

liv say. Adrien, that you love me. 

DE MAUPKAT {kissing htr hand). 

Ay; 

\\ ith my whole heart I love you ! 

Now, Sir, go. 
And tell that to his Majesty! — Who ever 

Heard of its being a state-offence to kiss 70 

The hand of one's own wife ? 

JULIE. 

He says he loves me. 
And starts away, as if to say '• I love you" 
Meant something very dreailful. — Come, sit by me, — 
I place your chair ! — fie on your gallantry ! 

{They sit down; as he pushes his chair back, she draws hers 

nearer.) 

JUL IK. 

Why must this strangre Mcs.sire de Beriiijrheii 
Bo always hen' ? He never takes a hint. 
Uo you not wish him gone ? 

DE MAUPKAT. 

Upon my soul 
'o. my Julie! — Send him for your IjoikjuH, 
\ our glove, your — anything — 

JULIE. 

Messire De Beringhen, 



30 RICHELIEU; [act n. 

I dropp'd my glove in the gardens by the fountain, 80 

Or the alcove, or — slay — no, by the statue 
Of Cupid ; may I ask you to 

DE BERINGHEN. 

To send for it ? 
Certainly (ringing a bell on the table). Andre, Pierre (your 

rascals, how 
Do ye call them ?) 

Enter Servants. 

Ah — Madame has dropp'd her glove 
In the gardens, by the fountain, — or the alcove ; 
Or — stay — no, by the statue — eh? — of Cupid. 
Bring it. 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Did ever now one pair of shoulders 
Carry such waggon-loads of impudence 
Into a gentleman's drawing-room? 

Dear Julie, 
I'm busy — letters — visiters — the devil ! 90 

I do beseech you leave me — I say — leave me. 

JULIE (weeping). 
You are unkind. 

Exit. (As she goes out, Mauprat droj)s on one knee and f 
kisses the hem of her mantle, unseen by her.) 

DE BERINGHEN. 

Ten million of apologies 

DE MAUPRAT. 

I'll not take one of them. I have, as yet. 

Withstood all things — my heart — my love — my rights. 

But Julie's tears ! When is this farce to end ? 

DE BERINGHEN. 

Oh ! when you please. His Majesty requests me, 

As soon as you infringe his gracious orders. 

To introduce you to the Governor 

Of the Bastile. I should have had that honour 

Before, but, gad, my foible is good nature ; 100 

One can't be hard upon a friend's infirmities. 

DE MAUPRAT. 

1 know the King can send me to the scaffold — 



sCKNKi] OK, THE CONSPIRACY. .11 

Dark prospect I — but I'm used to it ; and if 
The Church and Council, by this hour to-morrow, 
One way or other settle not the matter. 
1 will 

DE BERINGHEN. 

Wlmt, my dear Sir ? 

DE MAUPKAT. 

Show you the door. 
Mv dear, dear Sir ; talk as I please, with whom 
I please, in my own house, dear Sir. until 
His Majesty shall condescend to find 

A stouter gentleman than you, dear Sir, 1 10 

To take me out ; and now you understand me. 
My dear, most dear — Oh, damnably dear Sir ! 

DE BERINGHEN. 

What, almost in a passion ! you will cool 

Upon reflection. Well, since Madame '.v absent, 

I'll take a small refreshment. Now, don't stir; 

Be careful ; — how's your burgundy ? — I'll taste it — 

Finish it all before I leave you. Nay, 

No form ; — you see I make myself at home. 

[Exit De Beringhen. 

DE MAUPRAT (going to the door through which Baradas had 

passed). 
Baradas ! Count ! 

Enter Baradas. 

You spoke of snares — of vengeance 
Sharper than death — be plainer. 

BARADAS. 

What so clear? P20 

Richelieu has but two passions 

DE MAUPKAT. 

Richelieu ! 

BARADAS. 

Yes ! 
Ambition and revenge — in you both blended. 
First for ambition — Julie is his ward. 
Innocent — docile — pliant to his will — 
He placed her at the court — foresaw the rest — 
The King loves Julie ! 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Merciful Heaven ! The King ! 



32 RICHELIEU; [act ii. 

BARADAS. 

Such Cupids lend new plumes to Richelieu's wings : 

But the court etiquette must give such Cupids 

The veil of Hymen — (Hymen but in name). 

He look'd abroad — found you his foe : — thus served 130 

Ambition — by the grandeur of his ward. 

And vengeance — by dishonour to his foe ! 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Prove this. 

BARADAS. 

You have the proof — the royal Letter : — 
Your strange exemption from the general pardon^ 
Known but to me and Richelieu ; can you doubt 
Your friend to acquit your foe ? The truth is glaring — 
Richelieu alone could tell the princely Lover 
The tale which sells your life, — or buys your honour ! 

DE MAUPRAT. 

I see it all ! — Mock pardon — hurried nuptials — 

False bounty ! — all ! — the serpent of that smile ! 140 

Oh ! it stings home ! 

*• BARADAS. 

You yet shall crush his malice ; 
Our plans are sure : — Orleans is at our head ; 
We meet to night ; join us, and with us triumph. 

DE MAUPRAT. 

To night ? — Oh Heaven ! — my marriage night ! — Revenge ! 

BARADAS. 

What class of men, whose white lips do not curse* 

The grim, insatiate, universal tyrant? 

We, noble-born — where are our antique rights — 

Our feudal seignories — our castled .strength, 

7'hat did divide us from the base Plebeians, 

And made our swords our law — where are they ? — trod 150 

To dust — and o'er the graves of our dead power 

ScafTolds arc monuments — the Kingly House 

Shorn of its beams — the Royal Sun of France 

'Clips'd by this blood-red comet. Where we turn, 

Nothing but Richelieu ! — Armies — Church— State — Laws, 

But mirrors that do multiply his beams. 

* Omitted in representation from line 146 to 171. 



« 



SCENE i] OH, THE CONSPIRACY. 33 

He sees all — acts all — Argus and Briaraeus — 
Spy at our boards — and deathsman at our hearths. 
Under the venom of one laidley nightshade, 
Wither the lilies of all France. 

UE MAUPRAT {impatietit/y). 

But Julie — IGU 

BARADAS (unheeding him). 

As yet the Fiend that serves hath saved his power 

From every snare ; and in the epitaphs 

Of many victims dwells a warning moral 

That preaches caution. Were I not assured 

That what before was hope is ripen'd now 

Into most certain safety, trust me, Manprat, 

I still could hush my hate and mark thy wrongs, 

And say " Be patient !" — Now, the King himself 

Smiles kindly when I tell him that his peers 

Will rid him of his Priest. Vou knit your brows, 1 70 

Noble impatience I — Pass we to our scheme ! 

Tis Richelieu's wont, each morn, within his chapel, 

(Hypocrite worship ended,) to dispense 

Alms to the Mendicant friars. — in that guise • 

A band (yourself the leader) shall surround 

And seize the despot. 

DE MAUPRAT. 

But the King .'' but Julie? 



BARADAS. 



The King, infirm in health, in mind more feeble. 

Is but the plaything of a Minister's will. 

Were Richelieu dead — his power were mine ; and Louis ISO 

Soon should forget his passion and your crime. 

But whither now .'' 

DE MAUPRAT. 

1 know not ; I scarce hear thee; 
A little while for .nought: anon I'll join thee; 
But now, all air seems tainted, and I loathe 
The face of man ! 

[Exit De MuiijiKit through the Gardens. 

BARADAS. 

Start from the chase, mv prey. 
But as thou speedst the hell-hounds of Revenge 
Pant in thy track and do? thee down, 

D 



34 RICHELIEU ; [act ii. 

Enter De Beringhen, his mouth full, a napkin in his hand. 

DE BERINGHEN. 

Chevalier, 
Your cook's a miracle, — Avhat, my Host gone ? 
Faith, Count, my office is a post of clanger — 
A fiery fellow, Mauprat ! — touch and go, — 
Match and saltpetre, — pr — r — r — r — ! 

BARADAS. 

You 190 

Will be released ere long. The King resolves 
To call the bride to court this day. 

DE BERINGHEN. 

Poor Mauprat ! 
Yet, since you love the lady, why so careless 
Of the King's suit? 

BARADAS. 

W Because the lady's virtuous, 

And the I-^g timid. Ere he win the suit 
He'll lose llmcrown, — the bride will be a widow, — 
And I — the Mchelieu of the Regent Orleans. 

DE BERIISGIIEN. 

Is Louis still so chafed against the Fox, 

For snatching yon fair dainty from the Lion ? 

BARADAS. 

So chafed, that Richelieu totters. Yes, the King 200j 

Is half conspirator against the Cardinal. 

Enough of this. I've found the man we wanted, — 

The man to head the hands that murder Richelieu, — 

7Tie man, whose name the synonym for daring. 

DE BERINGHEN. 

He must mean me ! — No, Count, 1 am — I own 
A valiant dog — but still — 

BARADAS. 

Whom can I mean 
But Mauprat ? — Mark, to-night we meet at Marion's, 
Tliere shall we sign : — thence send this scroll (showing it) to 

Bouillon. 
You're in that secret {affeciionately) — one of our new Council. 

DE BERINGHEN. 

Bur to admit the Spaniard — France's foe — 2I0| 



35 



2-20 



RNE i] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 

Into the heart of France.— dethrone the Kiiifj,— 
looks like treason, and I smell the headsnuin. 

BARADAS. 

■h, Sir, too late to falter : when we meet 
.> must arrange the separate— coarser scheme, 
r Richelieu's death. Of this despatch De Mauprat 
iiist notliinor learn. lie only bites at vonaoance, 
;kI he would start from treason.— We murt post 'him 
vV ithout tile door at Marion's— as a sentry. 
ImJ(')—So, when his head is on the block— his tongue 
annot betray our more august desi«Tns ! ° 

DE BERTNGHEN. 

ril meet you, if the King can spare me.— (Aside. )~'No ' 

1 am too old a goose to play with foxes. 

ril roost at home. Meanwhile, in the next room 

1 here s a delicious p^te, let's discuss it. 

BARADAS. 

Pshaw ! a man fill'd with a sublime ambition 
Has no time to discuss your p^tes. 

DE BERINGHEN. 

. , Pshaw ! 

^d a man fiU'd with as sublime a pate 
Has no time to discuss ambition. — Gad, 
I have the best of it ! 

(Enter Julie hastily with first Courtier.) 
JULIE (to Courtier). 

A summons. Sir, 
To attend the Louvre .'—On this day too ? 

COURTIER. 

™ , . Madame. 230 

Ihe royal carriage waits below -Messire (/o De Beringhen) 

rou will return with us. 'fe"^";. 

JULIE. 

,„ Wliat can this mean 1 — 

Vhere is my husband .' 

BARADAS. 

, , He has left the house 

crhaps till nightfall— so he bade me tell you 
ilas, were I the lord of such fair treasure— 

D -1 



I 



36 RICHELIEU; [act ii. 

JULIE (impatiently). 
Till nightfall ?— Strange— my heart misgives me 

COURTIER. 

Madame, 
My orders will not brook delay. 

JULIE {to Baradas). 

You'll see him — 
And you will tell him ! 

BARADAS. 

From the flowers of Hybla 
Never more gladly did the bee bear honey, 
Than I take sweetness from those rosiest hps, ^4U 

Thoucrh to the hive of others ! 

COURTIER {to De Beringhen). 
Come, Messire. 

DE BERINGHEN {hesitating). 
One moment, just to — 

COURTIER. 

Come, Sir. 

DE BERINGHEN. 

I shall not 
Discuss the pate after all. 'Ecod, 
I'm puzzled now. 1 don't know who's the best of it ! 

Exeunt Julie, De Beringhen, and Courtier. 

BARADAS. 

Now will this tire his fever into madness ! 

All is made clear : Mauprat must murder Richelieu — 

Die for that crime : — I shall console his Julie — 

Tiiis will reach Bouillon ! — from the wrecks of France 

I shall carve out — who knows — percliance a throne ! 

All in despite of my Lord Cardinal. — 250 

Enter De Mauprat from the Gardens. 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Speak ! can it be ? — Methought, that from the terrace 
I saw the carriage of the King — and Julie ! 

-^Q \ no ! — my frenzy peoples the void air 

With its own phantoms ! 



SCENE I.] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 37 

BARADAS. 

Nay, too true. — Alas ! 
Was ever li^htninar swifter, or more blasting. 
Than Richelieu's forked guile ? 

DE MAUPRAT. 

I'll to the Louvre 



BARADAS. 



And lose all hope ! — The Louvre! — the sure gate 
To the Bastile ! 



DE MAUPRAT. 



The King 

BARADAS. 

Is but the wax. 
Which Richelieu stamps ! Break the malignant seal, 
And I will rase the print ! Come, man, take heart ! 260 

Her virtue well could brave a sterner trial 
Than a few hours of cold imperious courtship. 
Were Richelieu dust — no danger ! 

DE MAUPBAT. 

Ghastly Vengeance ! 
To thee and thine august and solemn sister 
The unrelentingr Death ! I dedicate 
The blood of Armand Richelieu ! When Dishonour 
Reaches our hearths Law dies, and Murther takes 
The angel shape of Justice ! 

BARADAS. 

Bravely said ! 
At midnight, — Marions! — Nay, I cannot leave thee 
To thoughts that 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Speak not to me ! — I am yours ! — 270 

But speak not ! There's a voice within my soul. 
Whose cry coidd drown the thunder. — Oh ! if men 
Will play dark sorcery with the heart of man, 
Let they, who raise the spell, beware the Fiend ! [Exeunt. 



39 RICHELIEU; [act ii. 

SCENE II. 

A room hi the Palais Cardinai (as in the First Act). 

Riche liev. — Joseph. 
Fran<^oi.s, writing at a table. 

JOSEPH. 

Yps ; — Iluguet;, taking his accustom'd round, — 

Uisguiscd as some plain burgher, — heard these rufflers 

Quoting your name : — he listened, — " Pshaw !" said one, 

" We are to seize the Cardinal in his palace 

To-morrow !" — " How ?" the other ask'd ; — " You'll hear 

Tlic whole design to-night; the Duke of Orleans 280 

And Baradas have got the map of action 

At their fingers' end." — " So be it," quoth the other, 

" I will be there, — Marion de Lorme's — at midnight !" 

RICHELIEU. 

I have them, man, I have them ! 

JOSEPH. " 

So they say 
Of you, my Lord ; — believe me, that their plans 
Are mightier than you deem. You must employ 
Means no less vast to meet them ! 

RICHELIEU. 

Bah ! in policy 
We foil gigantic danger, not by giants. 

But dwarfs. The statues of our stately fortune 

Are sculptured by the chisel — not the axe !* 290 

Ah ! were I yoimger — by the knightly heart 
That beats beneath these priestly robes, f I would 

* Richeli«u not only employed the lowest, but would often consult men com- 
monly fsteemtd, the dullest. " II disoit que dans des choses de tros grande im 
portiince. il avail exiicrinicnti-, qvie les m(;ins sages donnoient souvt-ut !es meil- 
leurs exjji'diuns,'" — Le C/erc, 

f Both Richelieu and Joseph were oiiginally intended for the profession of 
nruiH. Joseph hiid served before he obeyed the spiritual inspiration to become a 
Capuchin. The denth of his brother opened to Richelieu the Bishopric of 
Liioon ; but his military propensities were as strong as his priestly ambition. I 
need scarcely add that the Cardinal, during his brilliant campaign in Italy, 
marched at the head of his troops in complete armour. It was under his admiuis- 
tration that occurs the last ex.'imple of proclaiming war by the chivalric defiance 
of lierald and cartel. Richelieu valued himself much on his personal ac- 
tivity, — for his vanity was as universal as his ambition. A nobleman of the 



SCENE II.] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 39 

Have pastime with these cut-throats! — Yoa, — as when, 
Lured to the ambush of the expecting foe, — 
I clove my pathway througli tlie j)hmied sea ! 
Reach me yon falchion, Fran(]ois, — not that bauble 
For carpet-warriors, — yonder — such a blade 
As old Charles Martel migrht have wielded when 
He drove the Saracen from France. 

(Francois brhigs him one of the long two-handed swords looin 

in the Middle yiges.) 

With this 
I, at Rochelle, did hand to hand engage 300 

The stalwart Englisher, — no mongrels, boy. 
Those island mastiffs, — mark tlie notch — a deep one — 
His casque made here, — I shore him to the waist ! 
A toy — a feather — then ! 

(Tries to wield, and lets it fall.) 

You see a child could 
Slay Richelieu, now. 

FRANCOIS (his hand on his hilt). 

But now, at your command 
Are other weapons, my good Lord. 

RICHELIEU (who has seated himself as to write, lifts the pen). 

True, — THIS ! 
Beneath the rule of men entirely great 
The pen is mightier than the sword. Behold 
The arch-enchanter's wand! — itself a notliinff! — 
But taking sorcery from the master-hand 310 

To paralyse the Cajsars — and to strike 
The loud earth breathless ! — Take away the sword — 
States can be saved witliout if ! ^ 

(Lookimj on the clock.) 
'Tis the hour, — 
Retire, Sir. [ Exit Francois. 

{A knock is heard. A door, concealed in the arras opens 
cautiously. Enter Marion de Lorme.) 



house of Grammont one day found him employed in jumping, a.nii, with all the 
lavoir vivre of a Frenchman and a courtier, offered to jump ai^ainst him. He 
suflRred the Cardinal to jump hi(^her, and soon after found himself rew,»rded by 
an appointment. Yet, strangely enough, this vanity did not lead to a patronage 
injurious to the st>ite ; for never before in France was ability made so etisential a 
requisite in promotion. He was lucky in finding the cleverest fellows among 
his adroitest flatterers. 



40 RICHELIEU ; [act n. 

JOSEPH {amazed). 
Marion de Lorme ! 

RICHELIEU. 

Hist ! — Joseph, 
Keep guard. 

{Joseph retires to the principal entrance.^ 
My faithful Marion ! 

MARION. 

Good, my Lord, 
They meet to-night in my poor house. The Duke 
Of Orleans heads them. 

RICHELIEU. 

Yes — go on. 

MARION. 

His Highness 
Much question'd if I knew some brave, discreet. 
And vigilant man, whose tongue could keep a secret, 
And who had those twin qualities for service, 3*20 

'i'he love of gold, the hate of Richelieu. — 

RICHELIEU. 

You ?— 

MARION. 

Made answer, " Yes^ — my brother; — bold and trusty ; 
Whose faith, my faith could pledge;" — the Duke then 

bade me 
Have him equipp'd and arm'd — well-mounted — ready 
This night to part for Italy. 

RICHELIEU. 

Aha!— 
Has liouillon too turn'd traitor! — So, methought ! — 
What i)ar» of Italy? 

MARION. 

The Piedmont frontier. 
Where Bouillon lies encamp'd. 



"^CRNE II. ] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 41 



RICHELIKU. 



Now there is danger ! 
Great danger! — If he tamper with the Spaniard, 
And Louis hst not to my council, as, 330 

Without sure proof, he will not, — France is lost. 
What more? 



MARION. 

Dark hints of some design to seize 
V'our person in your palace. Nothing clear — 
His Highness trembled while he spoke — the words 
^^id choke each other ! 

RICHELIEU. 

So ! — Who is the brother 
V'ou recommended to the Duke ? 

M.\RION. 

Whoever 
Your Eminence may father I — 

RICHELIEU. 

Darling Marion I * 
(Goes to the table, and returns with a large bag of gold.) 

There — pshaw — a trifle 1 — What an eye you have ! 
And what a smile — child ! — (kisses her) — Ah ! you fair per- 
dition — 
*Tis well I'm old ! 

MARION {aside and seriously). 

What a great man he is ! 340 

RICHELIEU. 

You are sure they meet ? — the hour ? 

* Voltaire openly charges Richelieu with being the lover of Marion ile Lorme. 
whom the great poet of France, Victor Hugo, has sacrificed History to adorn with 
quahties which were certainly not added to her p'.rsonal charms. — She was not 
lets perfidious than beautiful. — Le Clerc, properly, refutes the accusation of 
Voltaire, against the discretion of Richelieu; and say?, very justly, that if the 

Ereat minister had the frailties of human nature, he learnt how to vt-il them, — at 
ast when he obtained the scarlt^t. In earlier life he had been prone to gal- 
lantries which a little prepossessed the King (who was formal and ilfcoroiis, and 
threw a singular coldness into the few attachments he permitted to himself) 
against the aspiring intriguer. But these gayer occupations died away in the 
engagement of higher pursuits or of darker (lassiuns. 



42 RICHELIEU; [act ii. 

MARION. 

At midnight. 

RICHELIEU, 

And 
You will enaao-e to sfive the Duke's despatch 
To whom I send? 

MA.R10N. 

Aye, marry ! 

RICHELIEU (aside). 

Huguet? No; 
He will be wanted elsewhere. — Joseph ? — zealous, 70 

But too well known — too much the elder brother! 
Mauprat — alas — it is his wedding-day ! — 
Franqois ?— the Man of Men! — unnoted— young — 
Ambitious— (goej to the door)— Francois ! 

Enter Frangois. 

RICHELIEU. 

Follow this fair lady : 
( Find him the suiting garments, Marion,) take 3 50 

My fleetest steed : — arm thyself to the teeth ; 
A packet will bo given you — with orders, 
No matter what I— The instant that your hand 
Closes upon it — clutch it, hke your honour, 
Which Death alone can steal, or ravish — set 80 

Spurs to your steed — be breathless, till you stand 
Again before me. — Stay, Sir ! — You will find me 
Two short leagues hence — at Ruelle, in my castle. 
Young man, be blithe ! — for — note me — from the hour 
I arasp that packet — think your guardian Star 360 

Rains fortune on you ! 

FRANQOIS. 
If I fail— 

KICHELIF.U. 

Fail— fail ? 
In the lexicon of youth, which Fate reserves 
For a bright manhood, there is no such word 



SCENE II.] OK, THE CONSPIRACY. 43 

As — fuil '. — (Vou will instruct him further, Marion) ^^ 

Follow her — but at distance ; — speak not to her. 
ri!l you are housed ; — Farewell, boy ! Never say 
• Fail" again. 

FK.\NgOIS. 

I will not ! 

RICHELIEU (patting his locks). 

There's my young hero ! — 

{^Exeunt Francois — Marion. 

KICHELIEU. 

So, they would seize my person in this palace ? — 
I cannot guess their scheme : — but my retinue 
Is here too large! — a single traitor could 370 

Strike impotent the faith of thousands ; — Joseph, 
\rt sure of Iluguet? — Think — we hang'd his Father ! 

JOSEPH. 

But you have bought the Son ; — heap'd favours on him ! 

^ KICHELIKU. 

Trash 1 — favours past — that's nothing. — In his hours 
Of confidence with you, has he named the favours 
To come — he counts on ? 

JOSEPH. 

Yes : — a Coloners rank. 
And Letters of Nobility. 

RICHELIEU. 

What, Huguet ! — 

{Here Huguet enters, as to addre.fs the Cardinal, v ho does 

not perceive him.) 

HUGUET. 

My own name, soft — (glides behind the screen !) 

RICHELIEU. 

Colonel and Nobleman I 
My bashful Huguet — that can never be I — 
We have him not the less — we'll promise it ! '6bO 



44 



RICHELIEU; [act ii. 



And see the Kiu^ withliokls !— Ah, kings are oft 

A oreat convenience to a minister ! 

No'^wrong lo Huguet either! — Moralists 

Say, Hope is sweeter than Possession! — Yes — 

We'll count on Huguet ! Favours paH do gorge 

Our do<TS ; leave service drowsy — dull the scent. 

Slacken the speed ;— favours to come, my Joseph, 

Produce a lusty, hungry gratitude, 

A ravenous zeal, that of the commonest cur 

Would make a Cerberus.— You are right, this treason 390 

Assumes a fearful aspect : — but once crush'd. 

Its very ashes shall manure the soil 

Of power ; and ripen such full sheaves of greatness, 

That all the summer of my fate shall seem 

Fruitless beside the autumn ! 

{Huguet holds vp his hand menacingly, and creeps out.) 

JOSEPH. 

The saints grant it ! 

RICHELIEU {solemnly). 
Yes— for sweet France, Heaven grant it !— O my country, 
For thee — thee only — though men deem it not — 
Are toil and terror my familiars I — I 
Have made thee great and fair— upon thy brows 
Wrcath'd the old Roman laurel :— at thy feet 400 

Bow'd nations down. — No pulse in my ambition 
Whose beatings were not measured from thy heart ! 
hi the old times before us, patriots lived* 
And died for liberty — 

JOSEPH. 

As you would live 
And die for despotry — 

RICHELIEU. 

False monk, not so, 
But for the purple and the power wherein 
State clothes herself. — I love my native land 
Not as Venetian, Englishcr, or Swiss, 
But as a Noble and a Priest of France ; 

" All things for France" — lo, my eternal maxim! 410 

The vital axle of the restless wlieels 
That bear me on ! With her, I have entwined 

* Omitted, in representation, from 1.402 to 419. 



SCENE II.] OR, THK CONSPIRACY. 45 

My passions and my fate — my crimes, my virtues — 

Hated and loveil*, and schemed, and shed mens blood. 

As the cahn crafts of Tuscan Sages teach 

Those who would make their country great. Beyond 

The Maj) of France — my heart can travel not, 

But tills that limit to its farthest verge ; 

And while I live — Richelieu and France are one. 

We Priests, to whom the Church forbids in youth 420 

The ])lighted one — to manhoods toil denies 

The soother helpmate — from our wither'd age 

Shuts the sweet blossoms of the second spring 

That smiles in the name of Father — We are yet 

Not holier than Humanity, and must 

Fulfil Humanity's condition — Love ! 

Debarr'd the Actual, we but breathe a life 

To the chill Marble of the Ideal — Thus, 

In thy unseen and abstract Majesty, 

* Richelieu did in fact so thorouglily associate himself with the State, th.it, 
in cases where the extr»'me penalty of the law had been incurred, Le Clerc 
justly observes that he was more inextiralile to those he had favoured — even to 
bis own connections — than to other ahd more indifiereiit offenders. It must be 
remembered as some excuse for his unrelenting sternness that, before his time, 
the j;reat had been accustomed to commit any di-order with impunity — even the 
crime of treason, *• auparavant on ne faisoit poser ks armes aux rebelles qu'en 
leur accordant quelque recompense." On entering into the administration, he 
therefore laid it down as a maxim necessary to the ex.istence of the State, that 
" no crime should be committed with impunity." To carry out this maxim, 
the loDg-established licence to crime made even justice seem cruel. But the 
victims most commiserated from their birth or accomplishments, as Monfmorenci, 
or Cinq ISIats, were traitors in actual conspiracy against their country, and 
would have forfeited hfe in any land where the punishment of death existed, 
and the lawgiver was strong enough to vindicate the law. Richelieu was in 
fact a patriot unsoftened by philanthropy. As in Venice (where the favourite 
aphorism was, Venice first,* Christiauity next), so, with Richelieu, the p imary 
consideration was, " what will be best for the Country .'"' He had no alistract 
prmciple, whether as a politician or a priest, when applied to the world 
that lay beyond the boundaries of France. Thus he, whose o! ject was to 
fiiund in France a spli-ndxl and imperious despotism— assisted the Parlia- 
mentary party in England, and signed a treaty of aUiance and subsidies with the 
Catalan rebels for the establishment of a Republic in Barcelona ; — to convulsu 
other Monarchies was to consolidate the growing Monarchy of France. — So he. 
who completely crushed the Prutestant pirty at home, braved all the wr.ith of 
the \'atican, and even the resentment (:f the King, in giving the most essential 
aid to the Protestants abroid. There was, indeed, a largeness of view in his 
hostility to the French Iluguenois, which must be carefully distingui.shed 
from the intolerance of the mere priest. He opposed them, not as a Catholic, 
but as a Statesman. The Huguenots were strong republicans, and had forme<i 
plans for d.vidiiig France into provincial commonwealths; and the existence 
of Rochelle was absolutely incoiiijiatitile with ihe uitegrity of the French Mo- 
narchy. It was a second cajiital held by the Huguenots, claiming independent 
authority, and the ri;,'ht to treat with Foreign Powers. Richelieu's filial 
conquest was marked by a humanity, that had nothing of the liigot. The 
Huguenots obtained a complete amnesty, and had only to regret tlie loss of 
privdeges and foitifications which could not have existed with any security to 
the rest of France. 

* Pria Veneziana, poi Christiaae." 



46 RICHELIEU; [act ii. 

My France — my Country, I have bodied forth 430 

A thing to love. What are these robes of state. 
This pomp, this palace ? perishable baubles ! 
In this world two things only are immortal — 
Fame and a People ! 

Enter Hvguet. 

HUGUET. 

My Lord Cardinal, 
Your Eminence bade me seek you at this hour. 

RICHELIEU. 

Did I ? — True, Huguet. — So — you overheard 
Strange talk amongst these gallants? Snares and traps 
For Richelieu ?— Well — we'll balk them ; let me think— 
The men at arms you head — how many ? 



My Lord. 

All trusty ? 



HUGUET. 

Twenty,* 

RICHELIEU. 
HUGUET. 



Yes, for ordinary 440 

Occasions— if for great ones, I would change 
Three-fourths at least. 

RICHELIEU. 

Ay, what are great occasions ? 

HUGUET. 

Great bribes ! 

RICHELIEU {to Joseph). 

Good lack, he knows some paragons 
Superior to great bribes ! 

HUGUET. 

True Gentlemen 
Who have transgress'd the Laws — and value life 
And lack not gold ; your Eminence alone 
Can grant them pardon. Ergo you can trust them ! 

* The piiard attached to Richelieu's person was, in the first instance, 6ffv 
arquebussiers, afterwards increased to two companies of cavalry and two hundred 
musqueteers. Iluguet ,s, therefore, to be considered merely as the lieutenant of 
a small detachment of this l.ttle army. In pon.t of fact, the subdivisions of the 
guard took it in turns to serve. 



SCENE II.] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 47 

RICHELIKU. 

Logic ! — So be it — let this honest twenty 

Be armM and mounted — (dsiclc.) So they meet at midnight. 
The attemj)! on me to-morrow — Ho ! we'll strike -150 

'Twixt wind and water. — (Aloud.) Does it need much time 
To find these ornaments to Human Nature? 

HUGTJET. 

My Lord — the trustiest of them are not birds 
That love the daylight. — I do know a haunt 
Where they meet nightly — 

RICHELIEU. 

Ere the dawn be grey, 
All could be arm'd, assembled, and at Ruellc 
In my old hall? 

HUGUET. 

By one hour after midnight. 

RICHELIEU. 

The castle's strong. You know its outlets, Huguet? 
Would twenty men, well posted, keep such guard 460 

That not one step — (and Murther's step is stealthy) — 
Could glide within — unseen ? 

HUGUET. 

A triple wall — 
I A drawbridge and portcullis — twenty men 
I Under my lead, a month might hold that castle 
Against a host. 

RICHELIEU. 

They do not strike till morning, 
Yet 1 will shift the quarter — Bid the grooms 
Prepare the litter — 1 will hence to Rnelle 
W liile daylight last — and one hour after midnight 
\ ou and your twenty saints shall seek me thilher! 
\ ou're made to rise ! — You are, Sir; — eyes of lynx, 
Rars of the stag, a footfall like ihe snow ; 470 



48 RICHELIEU; [act ii. 

You are a valiant fellow ; — yea, a trusty, 

Religious, exemplary, incorrupt. 

And precious jewel ol'a fellow, Huguet ! 

If I live long enough, — ay, mark my words 

If I live long enough, you'll be a Colonel — 
Noble perhaps ! — One hour. Sir, after midnight. 

HUGUET. 

You leave me dumb with gratitude, my Lord ; 

I'll pick the trustiest (aside) Marion's house can furnish ! 

\^Exit Huguet. 

RICHELIEU. 

How like a spider shall I sit in my hole. 
And watch the meshes tremble. 

JOSEPH. 

But, my Lord, 480 

Were it not wiser still to man the palace. 
And seize the traitors in the act ? 



RICHELIEU. 

No ; Louis, 
Long chafed against me — Julie stolen from him. 
Will rouse him more. — He'll say I hatch'd the treason, 
Or scout my charge : — He half desires my death ; 
But the despatch to Bouillon, some dark scheme 
Against his crown — there is our weapon, Joseph ! 
With tliat all safe — without it, all is peril! 
Meanwhile to my old castle; you to court. 
Diving with careless eyes into men's hearts, 490 

As ghostly churchmen should do ! See the King, 
Bid liim peruse that sage and holy treatise. 
Wherein 'tis set forth how a Premier should 
Be chosen from the I'riesthood — how the King 
Should never listen to a single charge 
Against his servant, nor conceal one whisper 
Tliat the rank envies of a court distil 
Into his ear — to fester the fair name 
Of my — I mean his Minister! — Oh! Joseph, 



SCENE II. ] OR, THE CONSFIKACV. 49 

A most coiivincing treatise.* 

Good — all favours, 500 

If Francois be but bold, and lluguet honest. — 
Huguet — I half suspect — he bow'd too low — 
'Tis not his way. 

JOSEPH. 

This is tlie curse, my Lord, 
Of your high state ; — suspicion of all men. 

RICHELIEU (sailhj). 

True ; — true; — my leeches bribed to poisoners ; — pages 
To strangle me in sleep. — My very King 

I'liis brain the unresting loom, from which was woven 
The purple of his greatness) leagued against me. 
Old — childless — friendless — broken — all forsake — 
AU— all— but— 

JOSEPH. 

What ? 

RICHELIEU. 

The indomitable heart 510 

JOSEPH. 



Of Armand Richelieu ! 



Nought beside ? 



RICHELIEU. 



Why, Julie, 
My own dear foster-child, forgive me ! — yes ; 
Tliis morning, shining through their happy tears, 
Thy soft eyes bless'd me ! — and thy Lord, — in danger 
He would forsake me not. 

JOSEPH. 

And Joseph — — 



' This tract, on the " Unity of the Minister.'' contains all the doctrines, and 
many more to the same effect, referred to in the text, ami hail a i>rodijriouit in- 
fluence on the conscience of the jmor kini^. At the onset of his career. Kiche- 
lieu, as deputy nf the clcrg)' of Hoiton. complained in his harangue to the king 
that ecclesiastics were too rarely summoned to the royal councils) and invoke<i 
the example of the Druids '. 

E 



50 RICHELIEU ; [act u. 

RICHELIEU {aftei- a jmuse). 

Yon 



Yes, I believe you— yes — for all men fear you — 

And the world loves you not. — And I, friend Joseph, 

I am the only man, who could, my Joseph, 

Make you a Bishop.*— Come, we'll go to dinner. 

And talk the while of methods to advance 520 

Our Mother Church. f — Ah, Joseph, — Bishop Joseph ! 

* Joseph's ambition was not, however, so moderate ; he refused a bishopric, 
and desired the Cardinul's Hat, for which favour Richeheu openly supplicated 
the Holy See, but contrived somehow or other never to eflect it, although two 
ambassadors applied for it at Rome. 

t The peculiar religion of Pere Joseph may be illustrated by the following 
anecdote :— An offictT, whom he had dismissed upon au expedition into Ger- 
many, moved by conscience at the orders he had received, returned for farther 
explanations, and found the Capucin disoit sa messe. He approached and whis- 
pered " But, my father, if these people defend themselves—" " Kill all" (Qu'oa 
tue tout), answered the good father, continuing his devotions. 



END OF ACT II. 



scKNF. i] OR, THK CONSPIRACY 51 



ACT III 

^^ccon'D Dan (iBiliixigl)t). 

SCENE I. 

Richelieu's Castle at Ritelle — A Gothic chamber- — MooU' 
light at the window, occasionally obscured. 

RICHELIEU (reading) * 

In silence, and at night, the Conscience feels 
riiat life should soar to nobler ends than Power." 
So sayest thou, sage and sober moralist ! 
Hut wert thou triea ? — Sublime Philosophy, 
Thou art the Patriarch's ladder, reaching heaven. 
And bright with beck'ning angels — but, alas ! 
We see tiiee, like the Patriarch, but in dreams, 
Bv the first step — dull-slumbering on the earth. 
I am not happy ! — with the Titan's lust 

I woo'd a goddess, and I clasp a cloud. 10 

When I am dust, my name shall, like a star. 
Shine through wan space, a glory — and a prophet 
Whereby pale seers shall from their aery towers 
Con all the ominous signs, benign or evil. 
That make the potent astrologuc of kings. 
But shall the Future judge me by the ends 
That I have wrought — or bv the dubious means 
Through which the stream of my renown hath run 
Into the many-voiced imfathomed Time? 

Foul in its Ijcd lie weeds — and heaps of slime. '20 

And with its waves — when sparkling in tiie sun. 
Oft times the secret rivulets that swell 
Its might of waters — blend the hues of blood. 
Yet are my sins not those of ciRCUMST.\hCE, 

* I netd not say that the preat length of this soliloquy adajits it only for the 
closet, and that but few of ihe lines are presiTM-d on the stajje. To the reader, 
however, the i>as8a<;e<i omitted in representation will not. )>erhups, be the mujit 
uniiiterestinj; in tiie play, and may be deemed iiecrssary to the cunipletioa of 
the Cardinal's portrait, — action on the fctajre supplying so subtly the jilace of 
words in the closet. The self-a.ssured sophistries which, in the text. miiij;le with 
Richtrlieu's better-lounded argiuuems in ai>ology fur the darker traits of his cha- 
racter, are to be found scattered through(nit the writinjjs ascril.ed to him. The 
reader will obstrve that in this self-confession lies the latent poetical justice, — 
which separates happiness from success. — [Lines retained on the stai^e from "JS 
to 40. J 

K-2 



52 RICHELIEU ; [act hi. 

That, all-porvading atmosphere, wherein 

Our spirits, like the unsteady lizard, take 

The tints that colour, and the food that nurtures? 

! ye, whose hour-glass shifts its tranquil sands 
In the unvex'd silence of a student's cell; 

Ye, whose untempted hearts have never toss'd 30 

Upon the dark and stormy tides where life 

Gives battle to the elements, — and man 

Wrestles with man for some slight plank, whose w^eight 

Will bear but one— while round the desperate WTetch 

'I'he Imngry billows roar — and the fierce Fate, 

Like some huge monster, dim-seen through the surf, 

Waits him who drops ; — ye safe and formal men. 

Who write the deeds, and with mifeverish hand 

VVeigii in nice scales the motives of the Great, 

^'e cannot know what ye have never tried ! 40 

History preserves only the fleshless bones 

Of what we are — and' by the mocking skull 

The would-be wise pretend to guess the features ! 

Witliout the roundness and the glow of life 

1 low hideous is the skeleton ! VVithout 
The colourings and humanities that clothe 
Our errors, the anatomists of schools 
Can make our memory hideous ! 

I have wrought 
Great uses out of evil tools — and they 

In the time to come may bask beneath the light 50 

Which I have stolen from the angry gods. 
And warn their sons against the glorious theft, 
Forgetful of the darkness which it broke. 

1 have shed blood — but I have had no foes / 

Save those the State had* — if my wrath was deadly, 
'Tis that I felt my country in my veins. 
And smote her sons as Brutus smote his own.f 
And yet I am not happy — blanch'd and sear'd 
Before my time — breathing an air of hate. 
And seeing daggers in the eyes of men, 00 

And wasting powers that shake the thrones of earth 
In contest with the insects — bearding kings 
And braved by lackies;]; — murder at my bed ; 

* It is well known that when, on his death-hed, Richelieu was asked if he 
foi(;ave his enemies; he replied, " 1 never had any, but those of the State." 
And this was true enouj;h, lor Richelieu and the State were one. 

f Kichi-rnu's vindication of himself from cruelty will he found in various 
parts of Petilot's (.'.olh'ction, vols. xxi. xxx. (6i*.) 

\ Voltaire has a striking passage on the singular fate of Richelieu, recalled 
ivery hour from his gigantic schemes to frustrate some miserable cabal of the 



scENK I.] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. r.3 

And lone amidst tlie multitudinous web. 
With the dread Three — that are the Fates u lio hold 
The woof and shears — the .Monk, the Spy, the Headsman. 
And this is Power! Alas! I am not happy. 

{After (I pauAC.) 
And vet the Nile is iVellid hv the weeds 
Its rising roots not up ; but never yet 

Did one least harrier by a ripple vex 7') 

My onward tide, unswept ia sport away. 
Am I so ruthless then that I do hate 
Them who hate me ^ Tush, tush ! I do not hate ; 
\ay, 1 forgive. The Statesman writes the doom. 
Hut the Priest sends the blessingr. I forgive them, 
But I destroy ; forgiveness is mine own. 
Destruction is the State's! For private life, 
Scripture the guide — for public, Machiavel. 
Would Fortune serve me if the Heaven were wroth f 
For chance makes half my greatness. I was born SO 

Beneath the aspect of a bright-eyed star. 
And my triumphant adamant of soul 
Is but the fix'd persuasion of success. 

Ah ! — here ! — that spasm ! — again! — How Life and Death 
Do wrestle for me momently ! — And vet 
Tlie King looks pale. I shall outlive the King! 
And then, thou insolent Austrian — who didst gibe 
At the ungainly, gaunt, and daring lover,* 
Sleeking thy looks to silken Buckingliam. — 
Thou shah — no matter! — I have outlived love. '.10 

() ! beautiful — all golden — gentle Voulh ! 
Making thy palace in the careless front 
And hopeful eye of man — ere yet the soul 
Hath lost the memories which (so Plato dream'd) 

ante-room. Richelieu would oftt-n exclaim, that " Six pieds do terre (as he 
called the kirif^'s cabinet; lui donnuient plus de pein'j que tout le rt'sti- de f Eu- 
rope." The death of Wallenstein, sacrificed by the Einpeior Ferdinand, pro- 
duced a most lively impression upon Richelieu. lie found many traits of com- 
parison between Ferdmand and Louis — Wal.eiistein and himself. In tlie 
Memoirs — now rei^arded by the best authorities as written by his sancticiii. and 
in j;reat part by himself — the jjreat Frenchman bursts (when alluding to W'ai- 
lensfein's murder) into a touching and pathetic anathema on the mitcic de 
rtttr vie of deyendeuce on jealous and timid royally, which l;e himself, while he 
wrote, sustained. It is wurfhy of remark, that it was precistfly at the perii)d of 
Wallenstein's death that Richelieu obtained from the kiu^; an augmentation of 
his ^uard. 

* Richelieu was comraouly supposed, though I cannot say I find much evi- 
dence for it, to have been ton presuming in an interview with .Anne of Austria 
fthe Queen), and to have bitterly reseutetl the contem|>t she expresseil fur him. 
The Duke of Buckingham's frantic and Quixotic passion for the Queen is well 
known. 



54 RICHELIEU; [act in. 

Breath'd f^lory from the earlier star it dwelt in — 

O ! for one sale from thine exultiiiff mornin£. 

Stirring amidst the roses, where of old 

Love shook the dew-drops from his glancing hair ! 

Could I recall the past — or had not set 

The prodigal treasures of the bankrupt soul 100 

In one shght bark upon the shoreless sea; 

The yoked steer, after his day of toil. 

Forgets the goad and rests — to me alike 

Or day or ni<{ht — Ambition has no rest ! 

Shall I resio^n — who can resign himself? 

For custom is ourself ; — as drink and food 

Become our bone and flesh — the aliments 

Nurturing our nobler part, the mind — thoughts, dreams. 

Passions, and aims, in the revolving cycle 

Of the great alchemj^ — at lengili are made 110 

Our mind itself; and yet the sweets of leisure — 

An honour'd home — far from these base intricrueS' — 

An eyrie on tlie heaven-kiss'd heights of wisdom — 

(Taking vp the book.) 
Speak to me, moralist ! — I'll heed rhy counsel. 

Were it not best 

{Enter Frangois hastily, and in part disguised.) 

RICHELIEU (flinging away the book). 

Philosophy, thou licst ! 
Quick — the despatch ! — Power — Empire ! Boy — the packet ! 

FRANCOIS. 

Kill me, my Lord. 

RICHELIEU. 

They knew thee — they suspected — 
They gaVfe it not 

FRANCOIS. 

He gave it — he — the Count 
De Baradas — with his own hand he gave it ! 

RICHELIEU. 

Baradas. Joy ! out with it ! 

FRANCOIS. 

Listen, 
And then dismiss me to the headsmen. 120 



RICHELIEU. 

Go on. 



Ha 



SCENE i] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 55 

FRANCOIS. 

They led mo to a chamber — There 
Orleans and Baraihi.-^ — and some half-score, 
\\ horn I know not — were met 

RICHELIEU. 

Not more I 

FRANCOIS. 

But from 
The 'adjoining chamber broke the din of voices. 
The clattering tread of armed men ; — at times 
\ shriller cry, that vell'd out. " Death to Richelieu !" 

RICHELIEU. 

"^peak not of me : thy country is in danger ! 

The "adjoining room — So, so — a separate treason ! 

The one thy ruin, France ! — the meaner crime, 130 

Left to their tools, my murder! — 

FRANCOIS. 

Baradas 
Ques-tioned me close — demurr'd — until, at last, 
O'erruled by Orleans, — gave the packet — told me 
That life and death were in the scroll — this gold — 

RICHELIEU. 

Gold is no proof — 

FRANCOIS. 

And Orleans promised thousands. 
When Bouillons trumpets in the streets of Paris 
Rang out shrill answer ; — hastening from the house, 
My footstep in the stirrup, Marion stole 
Across the threshold, whispering " Lose no moment, 
Ere Richelieu have the packet : tell him too — 140 

Murder is in the winds of Night, and Orleans 
^wears, ere the dawn the Cardinal shall be clay." 
>he said, and trembling fled within ; when, lo ! 
-A hand of iron griped me ; thro' the dark 
Gleamd the dim shadow of an armed man : 
Ere I could draw — the prize was wrested from me. 
And a hoarse voice gasp'd — "Spy, I spare thee, for 
This steel is virgin to thy Lord ! " — with that 
He vanish'd. — Scared and trembling for tin safety. 
I mounted, fled, and, kneeling at thy feet, I.'X) 



56 RICHELIEU; [act in. 

Implore thee to acquit my faith — but not. 
Like him, to spare my hfe. — 

RICHELIEU. 

Who spake of life ? 
I bade thee grasp that treasure as thine honour — 
A jewel worth whole hecatombs of lives ! 
Begone — redeem thine honour — back to Marion — 
Or Baradas — or Orleans — track the robber — 
Regain the packet — or crawl on to Age — 
Age and grey hairs like mine — and know, thou hast lost 
That which had made thee great and saved thy country. — 
See me not till thou'st bought the right to seek me. — 160 

Away ! — Nay, cheer thee — thou hast not faiFd yet, — 
There's no such word as "■fail .'" 

FRANCOIS. 

Bless you, my Lord, 
For that one smile! — Til wear it on my heart 
To light me back to triumph.* {Exit.) 

RICHELIEU. 

The poor youth ! 
An elder had ask'd life ! — I love the young ! 
For as great men live not in their own time. 
But the next race, — so in the young, my soul 
Makes many Richelieus. — He will win it yet. 
Franqois ! — He's gone. My murder ! Marion's warning ! 
This bravo's threat ! O for the morrow's dawn ! — ; 170 

I'll set my spies to work — I'll make all space 
(As does the sun) an Universal Eye — 
lluguet shall track — Joseph confess — ha ! ha ! — 
Strantre, while I laucrh'd I shuddcr'd, and ev'n now 
Thro' the chill air the beating of my heart 
Sounds like a death-watch by a sick man's pillow ; 
If Huguet could deceive me — hoofs without — 
The gates unclose — steps near and nearer ! 

( Enter Julie.) 

JULIE. 

Cardinal ! 
My father! (falls at his feet). 

• The fear and the hatred .vhich Richelit'u j^enerally inspireil were not shared 
hy his di'pciidants and those about his person, who are said '* to have adored 
him." — Ses domi'Sticiucs le rcgardaieiit coiiune le meilleur des ma'itres. — Le 
Clerc. Ill fact, altlioiij^li ii doit onjueii/cus <t co/i/'e, — he wjis, '/n meme leiiips, 
nffiible el p.'em df iloi'ci iir ilnns I'abord ; and he was no less generous to those 
who sLTVi'd than severe to those who opposed him. 



\ 



SCENE I.] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 57 

RICHELIEU. 

Julie at this hour ! — and tears ! 180 

What ails thee ? 

JULIE. 

I am safe ; I am with tliee ! — 

RICHELIEU. 

bate ! why in all the storms of this wild world 
What wind would mar the violet !* 

JULIE. 

That man — 
Why did I love him?— clinging to a breast 
That knows no shelter .' 

Listen — late at noon — 
The marriaore-dav — ev'n then no more a lover — 
He left me coldly, — well, — I sought my chamber 
To weep and wonder — but to hope and dream. 
Sudden a mandate from the kingr — to attend 
Forthwith his pleasure at the Louvre. 190 

RICHELIEU. 

Ha!— 

You did obey the summons ; and the king 
Reproach'd your hasty nuptial?. — 

JULIE. 

Were that all I 
He frown'd and chid; — proclaim'd the bond unlawful: 
Bade me not quit my chamber in the palace, 
Antl there at night — alone — this night — all still — 
i He sought my presence — dared — thou read'^t the heart. 
Read mine ! — I cannot speak it ! 

RICHELIEU. 

He a king, — 
You — woman ; well, — you yielded ! 

JULIE. 

Cardinal — 

Dare you say "yielded?" — Hujubled and abash'd. '200 

He from the chamber crept — this mighty Loiiis; 
Crept like a baffled felon !— yielded ! Ah ! 
More royalty in woman's honest heart 
Than dwells within the crowned nuijesty 
\iid >ceptred anger of a hundred kings! 
\ ieldcd ! — Heavens ! — yielded ; 



58 RICHELIEU ; [act in. 

RICHELIEU. 

To my breast, — close — close ! 
The world would never need a Richelieu, if 
jVIen — bearded, mailed men — the Lords of Earth — 
Resisted flattery, ftilsehood, avarice, pride. 
As this poor child with the dove's innocent, scorn 210 

Her sex's tempters. Vanity and Power! — 
He left you — well ! 

JULIE. 

Then came a sharper trial ! 
At the king's suit the Count de Baradas 
Sought me to soothe, to fawn, to flatter, while 
On his smooth lip insult appear'd more hateful 
For the false mask of pity : letting fall 
Dark hints of treachery, with a world of sighs 
That heaven had granted to so base a Lord 
The heart whose coldest friendship were to him 
Wliat Mexico to misers ! Stung at last 220 

By my disdain, the dim and glimmering sense 
Of his cloak'd words broke into bolder light. 
And THEN — ah ! then, my haughty spirit fail'd me ! 
Then I was weak — wept — oh ! such bitter tears ! 
For (turn thy face aside, and let me whisper 
The horror to thine ear) then did I learn 
That he — that Adrien — that my husband — knew 
The king's polluting suit, and deemed it honour ! 
Then all the terrible and loathsome truth 
Glared on me ; — coldness — waywardness — reserve — 230 

Mystery of looks — words — all unravell'd, — and 
I saw the impostor, where I had loved the God ! — 

RICHELIEU. 

I think thou wrong'st thy husband — but proceed. 

JULIE. 

Did you say " wrong'd" him? — Cardinal, my father. 
Did yon say " wrong'd ?" Prove it, and life shall grow 
One prayer for thy reward and his forgiveness. 

RICHELIEU. 

Let me know all. 

JULIE. 

To the despair he caused 
The courtier left me ; but amid the chaos 
Darted one g\iiding ray— to 'scape — to fly — 



SCENE n] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 59 

Roach Atlrion. loam tlio worst — 'twas then near miilnicrht : 240 

Tromhling I loft my chamber — soiiirht the queen — 

Fell at lier feet — reveal'd the unholy peril — 

Implored her aid to flee our joint disgrace, 
foved, she embraced and soothed me ; nay, preserved ; 
i.-r word suflRcod to unlock the palace-gates: 

! Mastend home — but home was desolate, — 
• > Adrien there! Fearing the worst, I fled 
> tliee, directed hither. As my wheels 
I used at thy gates — the clang of arms behind — 

- ue ringr of hoofs — 

RICHELIEU. 

'Twas but my guards, fair trembler. 250 
(So Huguet keeps his word, my omens wrong'd him.) 

JULIE. 

Oh, in one hour what years of anguish crowd ! 

RICHELIEU. 

Nay, there's no danger now. Thou needest rest. 
Come, thou shah lodge beside me. Tush ! be cheerd. 
My rosiest Amazon — thou wrong'st thy Theseus. 
All will be well — yes, yet all well. 

[EA'ctint t/t rough a side duor. 



SCENE II. 



Enter Huguet — De Mauprat, in complete armour, his vizor 

down. 

(The moonlight obscured at the casement.) 

HUGUET. 

Not here ! 

DE MAUPRAT. 

3h, I will find him, fear not. Hence, and guard 

The galleries where the menials sleep — plant sentries 
every outlet — Chance should throw no shadow 
tween the vengeance and the victim ! Go ! — 2G0 

v yon brief vapour that obscures the moon. 

^^ doth our deed ])ale conscience, pass away. 

I fie mighty shall be ashes. 



60 RICHELIEU , [ACT III. 

HTJGUET. 

Will you not 
A second arm ? 

DE MAUPRAT. 

To slay one weak old man ? — 
Away ! No lesser wrongs than mine can make 
Tliis murder lawful— Hence! 

HUGUET. 

A short farewell ! 

[Exit HuGUE r. 

Re-enter Richelieu (not perceiving De Mauprat). 

RICHELIEU. 

llow heavy is the air! — the vestal lamp 

Of the sad Moon, weary with vigil, dies 

In the still temple of the solemn heaven 1 ^'^ 

The very darkness lends itself to fear — 

To treason — 

DE MAUPRAT. 

And to death ! 

RICHELIEU. 

My omens lied not ! 
What art thou, wretch ? 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Thy doomsman ! 

RICHELIEU. 

Ho, my guards ! 
Hut'uet! Montbrassil ! Vermont! 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Ay, thy spirits 
Forsake thee, wizard ; thy bold men of mail 
Are mij con federates. Stir not ! bvit one step, 
And know the next— thy grave! 

RICHELIEU. 

Thou liest, knave ! 
I am old, infirm— most feeble— but thou liest ! 2! 

Armand de Richelieu dies not by the hand 
Of man— t lie stars have said it*— and the voice 

* 1„ commui, will, his coute.nporarles, Richelieu was cre.lulous in aslrolog 
and less lawful arts. He was too fortunate a mau not to be superstitious. 



'.PKNE II.] OK, THE CONSPIRACY. Gl 

Of my own | rophot and oracular soul 
Confirms the shiuiiiL.- Sibyls! Call thorn all — 
Thy brother butchers ! Marlh has no such tiend — 
No! as one parricide ol" his father-land. 
Who dares in Richelieu murder France! 

DE M.\UPRAT. 

Thy stars 
Deceive thee, Cardinal ; thy soul of wiles 
May against kinjTs and armaments avail. 

And mock the embattled world; but powerless now 290 

Against the sword of one resolved man. 
Upon whose forehead thou hast written shame ! 

RICHELIEU. 

I breathe ; — he is not a hireling. Have I wronged thee ? 
Beware surmise — suspicion — lies ! I am 
Too great for men to speak the truth of me! 

DE MAIPRAT. 

Thy ac/s are thy accusers. Cardinal ! 

' In his hot youth, a soldier, urged to crime 
Against the State, placed in your hands his life ; — 
Vou did not strike the blow — but, o'er his head, 
I'pon the gossamer thread of your caprice, 3U0 

Ilovereil the axe. — His the brave spirit's hell, 
The twilight terror of suspense; — your death 
Had set him free : — he purposed not, nor ])rayed it. 
One day you summoned — mocked him with smooth pardon — 

' Showered wealth upon him — bade an Angel's face 

1 Turn Earth to Paradise 

RICHELIEU. 

Well ! 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Was this mercy .'' 
A Caesar's generous vengeance ? — Cardinal, no I 
Judas, not Caesar, was the model ! "i'ou 
.Saved him from death for shame ; reserved to grow 
Tile scorn of living men — to his tleiid sires 3lU 

• prous reproach — scoft' of the age to come — 
.\ kind convenience — a Sir Pandarus 
To his own bride, and the august adulterer! 
Then did the first great law of lnunan hearts, 
VMiich with the patriot" s, not the rebel's, name 



62 RICHELIEU; [act in. 

Crowned the first Brutus, when the Tarquin fell. 
Make Misery royal — raise this desperate wretch 
Into tliy destiny ! Expect no mercy ! 
Behold De Mauprat ! 

( Lifts his vizor.) 

RICHELIEU. 

To thy knees, and crawl 
For pardon ; or, I tell thee, thou shalt live 320 

For such remorse, that, did I hate thee, I 
Would bid thee strike, that I might be avenged ! — 
It was to save my Julie from the King, 
That in thy valour I forgave thy crime ; — 
It was, when thou — the rash and ready tool — 
Yea, of that shame thou loath' st — did'st leave thy hearth 
To the polluter — in these arms thy bride 
Found the protecting shelter thine withheld. 

(Goes to the side door.) 
Julie de Mauprat — Julie ! 

Enter Julie. 

Lo ! my witness I 

DE MAUPRAT. 

What marvers this ? — I dream ! My Julie — thou ! 330 

This, thy beloved hand ? 

JULIE. 

Henceforth all bond 
Between us twain is broken. Were it not 
For this old man, I might, in truth, have lost 
The right — now mine — to scorn thee ! 



o 

,„^it now minp- 

RICHELIEU. 



So, you hear her ? 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Thou with some slander hast her sense infected ! 

JULIE. 

No, Sir : he did excuse thee in despite 
Of all that wears the face of truth. Thy Jriend — 
Thy coiiJidaiH — familiar — Baradas — 
Himself revealed thy baseness, 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Baseness ! 

RICHELIEU. 

Ay; ' 341 

That thou didst cotul dishonour. 



LENE ii] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 63 

»E MAUPRAT. 

Baradas ! 
Where is thy thunder. Heaven !* — Duped !— snared ! — undone ! 
Thou — thou could'st not believe hiui ! Thou dost love me ! 
Love cannot feed on fiilsehoods ! 

JLLiE (aside). 

Love him ! — Ah ! 
Be still, my heart ! Love you I did : — how fondlv. 
Woman — if women were n)y listeners now — 
Alone could tell ! — For ever fled my dream : 
Farewell — all's over ! 

RICHELIEU. 

Nay, my daughter, these 
Are but the blinding mists of day-break, love 
Sprung from its very light, and heralding 350 

A noon of happy summer. — Take her hand 

And speak the truth, with which your heart runs over 

That this Count Judas — this Incarnate Falsehood— 
Never lied more, than when he told thy Julie 
That Adrien loved her not — except, indeed. 
When he told Adrien, Julie could betray him. 

JULIE (embracing De Mauprat). 
You love me, then ! — you love me ! — and they wrong'd you ! 

DE MAIPR \T. 

Ah ! could'st thou doubt it ? 

RH HKLIEI.'. 

\\ hy, the very mole 

Less blind than thou ! Baradas loves thy wife; 

Had hoped her hand — aspired to be that cloak 360 

To the king's will, which to thy bluntness seems 

The Centaur's poisonous robe — hopes even now 

To make thy corpse his footstool to thy bed ! 

Where was thy wit, man ?— Ho ! these schemes are glass ! 

I he very sun shines through them. 



a 

Can you forgive 'CW;' 



DE MAl.'PRAT. 

O. my Lord, 

RICHELIEU. 

Ay, and save you ! 



64 RICHELIEU ; [act hi. 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Save !-— 
Terrible word !— O, save thyself: — these halls 
Swarm with thy foes : already for thy blood 
Pants thirsty Murder! 

JULIE. 

Murder ! 

RICHELIEU, 

Hush ! put by 
The woman. Hush ! a shriek — a cry — a breath 370 

Too loud, would startle from its horrent pause 
The swooping Death ! Go to the door, and listen ! — 
Now for escape ! 

DE MAUPRAT. 

None — none ! Their blades shall pass 
This heart to thine. 

RICHELIEU (drily). 

An honourable outwork. 
But much too near the citadel. I think 
That I can trust you now (sloivly, and gazing on him) : — yes ; 

1 can trust you. 
How many of my troop league with you ? 



DE MAUPRAT. 

We are your troop ! 



All 



RICHELIEU. 

And Huguet? — 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Is our captain. 

RICHELIEU. 

A retribution Power! — This comes of spies! 
All? then the lion's skin too short to-night, — 
Now lor the fox's ! — 

JULIE. 

A hoarse, gathering murmur ! — 
Hurrying and heavy footsteps ! — 

RICHELIEU. 

Ha ! — the posterns ? 



G5 



SCENE III.] OR, THl:: CONSPIRACY. 

DE MAUPRAT. 

\o egress where no sentry ! 

RICHELIEU. 

Follow me — 
I have it !— to my chamber — quick ! Come, Julie ! 
Hush! Mauprat, come ! 

Murmur at a f//.s/^»rp— Death to the Cardinal ! 

RICHELIEU. 

Bloodhounds, I jaufrh at ye! — ha! ha ! we will 

Baffle them yet.— Ha !— ha ! 

Exeunt Julie, Mauprat, Richelieu. 
HuouET {vithout). 

This way — this way ! 



SCENE HI. 
Enter Huguet and the Consyirators. 

HUGUET. 

De Mauprat's hand is never slow in battle ; 

Strange, if it falter now I Ha ! o^one ' 

FIRST CONSPIRATOR. 

. Perchance 

The fox had crept to rest ; and to his lair 390 

' Death, the dark hunter, tracks him. 

j Enter Mauprat {throwlug open the doors of the recess, in 
which a bed, whereon Richelieu lies extended.) 

MAUPRAT. 

Live the King! 
Kichelieu is dead ! 

HUOUET {advancing towards the recess ; mauprat following, 
his hand on his datrper'). 
Are his eyes open ? 



As if in life ! 



DE mauprat. 

Ay. 



66 RICHELIEU ; [act hi. 

HuauET (turning back). 

I will not look on him. 
"N'oii have been long. 

DK MAUPR.'VT. 

I watch'd him till he slept. 
Heed me. — No trace of blood reveals the deed ; — 
Strangled in sleep. His health hath long been broken — 
Found breathless in his bed. So runs our tale. 
Remember ! Back to Paris— Orleans gives 
Ten thousand crowns, and Baradas a lordship, 
To him who first gluts vengeance with the news 400 

That Richelieu is in heaven ! Quick, that all France 
May share your joy ! 

HUGUET. 

And you ? 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Will stay, to crush 
Eager suspicion — to forbid sharp eyes 
To dwell too closely on the clay ; prepare 
The rites, and place him on his bier — tiiis rmj task. 
I leave to you, sirs, the more grateful lot 
Of wealth and honours. Hence I 

HUGUET. 

I shall be noble ! 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Awav '. 

FIRST CONSPIRATOR. 

Five thousand crowns! 

OMNES. 

To horse ! — to horse ! 

[Exeunt Corifpiraiors. 



M.ENK IV. ] OH, THK CONSPIRACY. 67 



SCENE IV. 

.S7/// night. — .7 room in the house of Count De Baradax, 

lighted, ^c. 

Orleans-, De Beringhen. 

DE BERINGHEN. 

I undcrstaiul. Mauprat kept guard without : 

Knows nought of the despatch — but heads the troop 410 

Whom the poor Cardinal fancies his protectors. 

Save us from such protection ! 

ORLE.VNS. 

Yet, if Huguet, 
By whose advice and proffers we renounced 
Oiir earlier scheme, should still be Richelieu's minion, 
\nd play us false — 

DE BERINGHEN. 

The fox must then devour 
The geese he gripes, (I'm out of it, thank Heaven !) 
And you must swear you smelt the trick, but sceniM 
To ajjprove tlie deed — to render up the doers. 

Enter B.\radas. 

B.\R.\D.\S. 

Julie is fled : — the King, wiiom now I left 

To a most thorny pillow, vows reveno-e l-2() 

On lier — on Maujirat — and on Richelieu ! Well; 

We loyal men anticipate his wish 

Upon the last — and as for Mauprat,— 



DE BERINGHEN. 



(Showing a trrit.) 

They say the devil invented printing I Faith, 

He has some hand in writing parchment — eh, Count ? 

^^ hat mischief now ? 

n ARAD AS. 

Tlie King, at Julie's flight 
iiraged, will brook no rival in a subject — 
' on this old oflence — the affair of Faviau.x — 
re Mauprat can tell tales of us, we build 
lis bridge between the dungeon and the grave. •1;3() 

F 2 



68 RICHELIEU; [act iii. 

ORLEANS. 

Well ; if our courier can but reach the army, 
'i he cards are o\ivs ! — and yet, I own, I tremble. 
Our names are in the scroll — discovery, death ! 

BARADAS. 

Success, a crown ! 

DE BERiNGiiEN (apart to Baradas). 

Our future regent is 
No hero. 

BARADAS {to Dc Bcrinc/ken). 

But his rank makes others valiant ; 
And on his cowardice 1 moiuit to power. 
Were Orleans Regent — what were Baradas? 
Oh ! by the way — I had forgot, your highness. 
Friend Huguet whisper'd me, " Beware of Marion : 
I've seen her lurking near the Cardinal's palace." 440 

Upon that hint — I've found her lodgings elsewhere. 

ORLEANS. 

You wrong her. Count : — Poor Marion! — she adores me. 

BARADAS (apologetically). 

Forgive me, but 

Enter Page. 

PAGE. 

My Lord, a rude, strange soldier. 
Breathless witli haste, dennmds an audience. 

BARADAS. 

— So! 
'J'he archers ? 

PAGE. 

In the ante-room, my Lord, 
As yotj desired. 

BARADAS. 

'Tis well — admit the soldier. 

[ Exit Page. 
Huguet ! I bade him seek me here I 

Enter Huguet. 

HUGUET. 

My Lords, 
The deed is done. Now, Count, fulfil your word. 
And make me noble ! 



SCENE IV.] 



OK, THE CONSPIRACY 



69 



BARADAS. 

Richolieu dead ? — art stin* ? 
How died he ? 

mrcuET. 

Strangled in his sleep : — no blood, 
No tell-tale violence 

BARADAS. 

Strangled ? monstrous villain ! 
Reward for murder! Ho, there! 



450 



Enter Captain, with five Archers. 



[Stamping. 



IIUGUET. 

No, thou durst not ! 

BARADAS. 

Seize on the ruffian — bind him — gag him I Off 
To the Bastile ! 

HUGUET. 

Vour word — your plighted faith ! 

BARADAS. 

Insolent liar I — ho, away ! 

HUGUET. 

Nay, Count ; 
I have that about me, which 

BARADAS. 

Away with him ! 
[Exeunt Hugnet and Archeris. 
Now, then, all's safe; Huguet must die in prison, 
^o Mauprat : — coax or force the meaner crew 
I'o fly the country. Ha, ha! thus, your highness, 
(ireat men make use of little men. 

DE BERINGHEN. 

My Lords, K'.d 

Since our suspense is ended — you'll excuse me ; 
*Tis late — and, mtre nows, I have not supp'd vet ! 
I'm one of the new Council now, remember ; 
I feel the public stirring iiere already ; 
A very craving monster. Ait revoir ! 

[Exit (le Bcringhcn. 

ORLEANS. 

No fear, now Richelieu's dead. 



70 



RICHELIEU; 



[act 111 



BARADAS. 

And could he come 
To life again, he could not keep life's life — • 
His power, — nor save De Mauprat from the scaffold, — 
Nor Julie from these arms — nor Paris from 
The Spaniard — nor your hiorhness froni the throne ! 
All ours! all ours ! in s})ite of my Lord Cardinal ! 

Enter Page. 

PAGE. 

A gentleman, my Lord, of better mien 
Than he who last — 



470 



BARADAS. 

Well, he may enter, 



Can this be ? 



ORLEANS. 



BARADAS. 



One of the conspira'.ors : 
Mauprat himself, perhaps. 

Enter Frangois. 



[Exit Page. 



Who 



In Paris still ? 



FRANCOIS. 

My Lord — 

BARADAS. 



FRANCOIS. 



Ha, traitor ! 



The packet — the despatch — 
Some knave play'd spy without, and reft it from me, 
Krc I could draw my sword. 



Did he wear armour ? 



BARADAS. 

Play'd spy without ! 



FRANCOIS. 

Ay, from head to heel. 

ORLEANS. 

One of our baiKl. Oil, heavens ! 



.cENEiv] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 71 

BARADAS. 

Coulil it bi' Mtuiprat / ISO 

Kept ijuard at tlio door — knew nought of' the dcxjiatch — 
How Hi: ? — and yet, who other ? 

FRANCOIS. 

Ha, De Mauprat ! 
The night was dark — iiis vizor closed. 

BARADAS. 

'Twas he ! 
How could he ^uess .' — sdeath ! if he should betray us. 
His hate to Richelieu dies with Richelieu — and 
He was not orreat enou<jh for treason. — Hence ! 
Find Mauprat — beg, steal, iilch, or tbrce it back, 
Or, as I live, the halter 

FRANCOIS. 

By the morrow 
1 will regain it, (aside) and redeem my honour ! 

(Exit Francois.) 

ORLEANS. 

Oh I we are lost — 

BARADAS. 

Not so ! But cause on cause 490 

For Mauprat's seizure — silence — death ! Take courage. 

ORLEANS. 

Should it once reach the King^, the Cardinal's arm 
Could smite us from the grave. 

BARADAS. 

Sir, think it not ! 
I hold De Mauprat in my grasp. To-morrow 
And France is ours ! — Thou dark and fallen Angel, 
Who<e name on earth's Amijition — thou that makV 
Thy throne on treasons, stratagems, and nuirder — 
And with thy fierce and blood-red smile can>t quench 
The guiding stars of solemn empire — hear us — 
(For we are thine) — and light us to the goal ! iA)0 

KND OF act hi. 



I 



I 



•J2 RICHELIEU i [act iv. 



ACT IV. 

El)trtr ©au. 

SCENE I. 

The Gardens of the Louvre. — Orleans, BaradaSy De Berin- 

ghen, Courtiers, 8fc. 

ORLEANS. 

How does my brother bear the Cardinal's death ? 

BARADAS. 

With orrief", when thinking of the toils of State ; 
With joy, when thinking on the eyes of Julie : — 
At times he sighs, "Who now shall govern France ?" 
Anon exclaims — " Who now shall baffle Louis?" 

(Eiiter Louis and other Courtiers. They uncover.) 

ORLEANS. 

Now, my liege, now, I can embrace a brother. 

LOUIS. 

Dear Gaston, yes. — I do believe you love me ; — 

Richelieu denied it — scver'd us too long. 

A great man, Gaston ! Who shall govern France ? 

BARADAS, 

Yourself, my liege. That swart and potent star 10 

Eclij)sod your royal orb. He servM the country. 
But did he serve, or seek to stray tlie King ? 

LOUIS. 

You're right — he was an able politician * — 
That's all : — between oin-selves. Count, I suspect 
The largeness of his learning — specially 
In falconsf — a poor huntsman, too ! 

* Omitted in representation from line 13 to 66. 

t Louis XIII. is said to have possessed some natural talents, and in earlier 
youth to have exhibited the germs of noble qnalitifs ; but a blii^ht heems to 
have passed over his maturer life. Personally brave, but morally timid, — always 
governed, whether liy his mother or his minister, and always repining at the 
)oke. The only allcciiou amounting to a passion that he betrayed was foi 



I 



scfcNt 1 ] UK, THE CONSPIRACY. 73 

HAKVI) vs. 

Ha— ha ! 

^ our Majostv renioinbers — 

LOUIS. 

Ay, the bkiiKier 
Between the greffier and the .soiiillard when — 

(Chcrk.s- (I lid croAse.v himself.) 
Alas ! poor sinnei-s that we are ! we laugh 
While this great man — a priest, a cardinal. 20 

\ taithful servant — out upon us! — 

B.\RADAS. 

Sire, 
If my brow wear no cloud, 'tis that the Cardinal 
\o longer shades the King. 

LOUIS (looking up at the akiex). 

Oh, Baradas! 
Ani I not to be pitied? — what a day 
For— 

BAR.\U.\S. 

Sorrow ? — No, sire ! 

LOUIS. 

Bah! for hunting, man. 
And Richelieu's dead ; 'twould be an indecorum 
Till he is buried — {yawns) — life is very tedious. 
I made a madrigal on life last week : 
\ ou do not sing,* Count .^ — Pity ; you should learn. 
Poor Riciielieu had no ear — yet a great man. 30 

\h ! what a weary weight devolves upon me I 
These endless wars - these thankless Parliaments — 



■ t» sports of the field ; yet it was his craving weakr.css (and this, throws a kind 
: false interest over lii.s characttr.j to wish to be loveil. He hiinsielf loved no 
ao. He suti'cred the only woman who seems to iiave licen attached to him to 

.. ither in a convent — he gave up favourite after favourite to exile or the block. 

When K chelieu died, he said coldly, '• \'oila ud ^raud jiolitiijue mort !" and 

vl-.en the ill-fated but unprincipled Cinq Mars, whom he called lecher ami. was 

headed, he drew out his wa'ch at the fatal hour, and said with a smile, " I 

;!iink at this moment that le cher ami fait une vilainc mine.'" Neverthe- 

'is^ his conseieuci- at times (for he was devout and supersiitious) made him 
< i.tle, and his pride and his honour would often, when lea.st ex]>ected, rouse him 

lato haughty but brief re.sistance t.) the di'sj'utisui uudtrr which he bvrd. 

* Louis liad some musical ta!>te and accompiiNhment. wheri-with he oflen 

communicated to his favourites some of that wearisome euutii under which he 

himself almost unceasingly languished. 



10 



74 RICHELIEU ; [act r 

The snares in which he tangled Stales and Kings, 

Like the old fisher oi' the fable, Proteus, 

Netting great Neptune's wariest tribes, and changing 

Into alt sliapes when Craft pursued himself: 

Oh, a great man ! 

BARADAS. 

Your royal mother said so. 
And died in exile. 

LOUIS (sadly). 
True : I loved my mother !* 

BARADAS. 

The Cardinal dies.— Yet day revives the earth ; 
'^Ilie rivers run not back. In truth, my liege. 
Did yoiu- high orb on others shine as him, 
Why, things as dull in their own selves as I am 
Would glow as brightly with the borrowed beam.] 

LOUIS. 

Ahem ! — He was too stern. 

ORLEANS. 

A very Nero. 

BARADAS. 

Mis power was like the Capitol of old — 
Built on a human skull. 

LOUIS. 

And, had he lived, 
I know another head, my Baradas, 

* One of Louis's most bitter complaints against Richelieu was the contiuued 
l.anishment of the Queen Mother. It is impossible, however, not to be con- 
vinced that the relurn of that most worthless intrij^uaiite was wholly incom- 
patilile with the tran(iuillity ol the kingdom. Yet, on the other hand, the 
iioverly and privation which she endured in exile, are discreditable to the genero- 
Kity and the pratitude of Richelieu— she was his fiiit patron, though afterwards 
his most powerful jiersecutor. 

■f- In his Memoirs Richelieu gives an amtising account of the insolence and 
arts of IJaiadas, and (d)serves, with indignant astonishment, that the favourite 
was never weary of repeating to the King that he (Baradas) wouhl have made 
just as great a minister as Richelieu. It is on the attachment of Baradas to 
La C'ressias, a maid of honour to the Qut-en Jlothtr, of whom, according to 
Baradas. the King was enamoured also, that his love for the Julie de Mortemar 
of the play has been founded. The secret of Baradas' sudden and extraordinary 
influence with the King seems to rest in the personal adoration which he pro- 
fessed for Louis, wiih whom he affected all the jealousy of a lover, but whom he 
flattercil with the ardent chivalry of a knight. Even after his disgrace he 
placed upon his banner, " Fiat volimtas tua."' 



I 



t SCENE!.] OK, THE CONSIMRACV 75 

, That would have |)i(ip{)'(l tlio pilo : I've soeii liirn oye tliee 
[ With a most hungry taiicy. 

n.vRADAS {<tn.rioiis-lij). 

Sire, I knew 
\ oil woulii protect me. 

LOUIS. 

Did you .so : of course ! 50 

And yet he had a way with iiim — a sometliinoj 

That ahvays J3ut no matter — lie is dead. 

And, after all, men called his King " Tlic Just,"* 

And so I am. Dear Count, this siUiest Julie, 

I know not why, she takes my fancy. Many 

As fair, and certainly more kind; hut yet 

It is so. Count, I am no lustful Tarquin, 

And do ahhor the bold and frontless vices 

Which the Church justly censures; yet, 'tis sad 

On rainy days to drag out w cary hours f — 60 

Deaf to the music of a woman's voice — 

Blind to the sunshine of a woman's eyes. 

It is no sin in Kings to seek amusement ; 

And that is all I seek. I miss her much — 

She has a silver laugh — a rare perfection. 

B.\R\DAS. 

Richelieu was most disloyal in that marriage. 

LOUIS (^qiicrnlously). 

"He knew that Julie pleased me : — a clear proof 
1 le never loved me ! 

B.VRAD.VS. 

Oh, most clear [ — But now 
No bar between the lady and your will ! 

Ills writ makes all secure : a week or two 70 

ill tht! Bastile will sober Mauprat''s love, 
.viid leave him eager to dis.solve a hymen 
rijat brings him such a home. 

' Lj'iis was called The Just, but for no other reason tlian that he was born 
ailer the Libra. 

\ Louis XIIL <lid not resemble either his father or his son in the anlour ol' 
- attachments; if not wholly jilatonic, tluy wore wholly uniinpasKioncil : yet 
mail w^i." more jealous, or more un»cruj)uloii!,ly tyrannical when the jealousy 
i> aroused. 



76 RICHELIEU ; [act iv. 

LOUIS. 

See to it, Count ; 

(Exit Baradas.) 
I'll suuimon Julie back. A word with you. 

{Takes aside First Covrtier and De Beringhcn, and 
passes, conversing with them, through the gardens.) 

Enter Francois. 

FRANCOIS. 

All search, as yet, in vain for Mauprat ! — Not 

At homo since yesternoon — a soldier told nie 

He ?aw him pass tliis way with hasty strides; 

Should he meet Baradas — they'd rend it from him— 

And then — benignant Fortune smiles upon me — 80 

I am thy son ! — if thou desert'st me now, 

Come, Death and snatch me from disgrace. But, no. 

There's a great Spirit ever in the air 

That from prolific and far-spreading wings 

Scatters the seeds of honour — yea, the walls 

And moats of castled forts — the barren seas, 

The cell wherein tlie pale-eyed student holds 

Talk with melodious science — all are sown 

With everlastinsf honours, if our souls 

Will toil for fame as boors for bread — 

{Enter Manprat.) 

M.\UPRAT. 

Oh, let me— 90 

Let me but meet him foot to foot — I'll dig 
The Judas from his heart ; — albeit the King 
Should o'er him cast the purple ! 

FRANCOIS. 

Mauprat ! hold : — 
Where is the 

MAUPRAT. 

Well! What would'st thou? 

FRANCOIS. 

The despatch ! 
The packet. — Look on me — I serve the Cardinal — 
You know me. — Did you not keep guard last nlalit 
By Marion's house? 

MAUPRAT. 

I did : — no matter now ! — -. 

They told me, he was here ! — ;a 



SCENE i] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 17 

IRAXCOIS. 

joy ! quick — quick — = 
TIiP packet thou didst wrest from n e? 

MAIPH AT. 

The packet ? — 
What art thou he, I deem'd the Cardinal's spy 100 

(Dupe that I was) — and overhearing Marion — 

FRANCOIS. 

The same — restore it ! — haste ! 

MALPRAT. 

1 have it not : — 
Metliought it but reveal'd our scheme to Richelieu. 
And, as we mounted, gave it to 

{Enter Baradas.) 

Stand back ! 
iw, villain! now — I have thee ! 

{To Francois.) — Hence, Sir ! — Draw ! 

FRANCOIS. 

Art mad? — the King's at hand I leave him to Richelieu ! 
Speak — the despatch — to whom — 

MAUPRAT {dashing him aside and rushing to Baradas). 

Thou triple slanderer ! 
I 11 set ray heel upon thy crest ! 

{A few passes.) 

FRANCOIS. 

Fly— fly !— 
Ihc King ! — 

Ihiter at one .side Louis, Orleans, De Beringhen, Covriiers. 
^'c. — at the other, the Guards hastily. 

LOUIS. 

Swords drawn — before our very palace ! — 
I lave our laws died with Richelieu ? 

R \ R A I) A s . 

Pardon, Sire, — 11 U 

'// crime but self-defence.* {Aside to King.) It is De 
Mauprat ! 

• One of Richelieu's seveiest and least poliiic laws w.is that which made 
.(•lliiifj a capital crime. Never was the punishment ajj.iinvt the ofleiice more 
fiitlessly enforced ; and never were duels so desperate and so ntimirous. The 
iushnie:.t of ileath mii^t be evidently ineffectual so long as to refuse a duel is 
he dishonoured, ami s > lon^j as men hold tlie doctrine, however wrong, that 
w better to part with the life ihit Ile.iven ;;a\e thin the honour man makes. 

fact, the ^^reater the danjjer he incurretl, tiie greater was the punctilio of the 

dier of that time in I ravin;; it. 



78 RICHELIEU ; [act iv. 

LOUIS. 

Dare ho thus bravo us ? 

{Baradas goes to the gtiard and gives the writ.) 

MAUPRAT. 

Sire, in the Cardinal's name — 

BARADAS. 

Seize him— disarm — to the Bastile ! 

(De Maujjrat seized, struggles with the gvard~Frnnc,ois 
restlessly endeavouring to iKicify and speak to him — 
when the gates ojjen. Enter Richelieu — Josej^h— fol- 
lowed by arquebus siers.) 

BARADAS. 

The Dead 
Return'd to life! 

LOUIS. 

What a mock death ! this tops 
The Infinite of Insult. 

DE MAUPRAT [breaking from the guards). 

Priest and Hero! — 
For you are both — protect the truth ! — 

RICHELIEU {taking the lorit from the guard.) 

What's this ? 

• DE BERINGHEN. 

Fact in Philosophy. Foxes have got 
Nine lives, as well as cats 1 — 

BARADAS. 

Be firm, my liege. 

LOUIS. 

I have assumed the sceptre — I will wield it I 

JOSEPH. 

The tide runs counter — there'll be shipwreck somewhere. 120 
{Baradas and Orleans keep close to the King — whisper- 
ing and profupting hiyn ivhen liichelieu speaks.) 

RICHELIEU. 

Ilioh treason — Faviaux ! still that stale pretence ! 

My licgc, bad men (ay, Count, most knavish men !) 

Abuse yoiir royal goodness. — For this soldier, 

1*' ranee hath none braver — and his youth's hot folly, 

Misled — (by whom ynnr Highness may conjecture !) — 

Is long since cancoird by a loyal manhood. — 

I. Sire, have pardoned liim. 



SCENE I.] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 79 

I.OIIS. 

;\ lul we do give 
Your pardon to tin- winds. — Sir, do yonr duty ! 

RICHELIEl!. 

What, Sire ? — you do not know — Oh, pardon nie — 

\ ou know not yet, that tliis brave, honest, heart 130 

Stood between mine and murder ! — Sire ! for my sake 

For your old servant's sake — undo this wront^. 
Sec, let me rend tlie sentence. 

LOUIS. 

At your peril ! 
I This is too much : — Again, Sir, do your duty ! 

RI( HELIEU. 

' Speak not, but go: — I would not see youno- Valour 
. humbled as grey Service ! 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Fare you well ! 
Save Julie, and console her. 

FRANCOIS (aside to Mmqrrat). 

The despatch ! 
Your fate, foes, life, hang on a worcl ! — to whom ? 

DE MAUPRAT. 

To Huguet. 

FRANCOIS. 

Hush — keep council ! — silence — hope ! 

(Exeunt Mmipral mi. I Guard.) 
BARADAS (aside to Francois). 
Has he the packet ? 

FRANCOIS. 

He will not reveal — 140 

{Aside.) Work, brain !— beat, heart !— " There s no .such word 
a.sfail." 

(Exit Francois.) 
RICHELIEU (fiercely). 
Room, my Lords, room !— 'I'he minister of France 
Can need no intercession with the Kincr. 

(TLey fall hark.) 

, ^ LOUIS. 

AVhat means this false report of death. Lord Cardinal .-' 

RICHELIEU. 

.Are you then anger u. Sire, thai I live still!* 



80 RICHELIEU ; [act iv. 

LOUIS. 

No ; but such artifice — 

RICHKLIEU. 

Not mine : — look elsewhere ! 
Louis — my castle swarm'd with the assassins. 

BARADAS (advancing). 
We have punish'd them already. Huguet now 
In the Bastile.— Oh ! my Lord, we were prompt 
To avenge you — ice were — 

RICHELIEU. 

We ?— Ha ! ha ! you hear, 150 
My liege ! What page, man, in the last court grammar 
Made you a plural ?— Count, you have seized the hireling :— 
Sire, shall I name the rnaster ! 

LOUIS. 

Tush ! my Lord, 
The old contrivance : — ever does your wit 
Invent assassins, — that ambition may 
Slay rivals — 

RICHELIEU. 

Rivals, sire ! — in what? 
Service to France ? / have none ! Lives the man 
Whom Europe, paled belbro your glory, deems 
Rival to Armaiid Richelieu ? 

LOUIS. 

What, so haughty ! 
Remember, he who made, can unmake. 160 

RICHELIEU. 

Never ! 
Never ! Your anger can recall your trust. 
Annul my office, spoil me of my lands. 
Rifle my coffers, — but my name — my deeds. 
Are royal in a land beyond your sceptre ! 
Pass sentence on me, if you will ; from Kings, 
I/O, I appeal to Time ! *Be just, my liege — 
I found your kingdom rent with heresies 
And bristling with rebellion ; lawless nobles 
And broadlcss serfs ; England fomenting discord; 
Austria — her clutch on your dominion ; Spain 170 

Forging the prodigal gold of either Ind 
To armed thunderbolts. The Arts lay dead, 
Trade rotted in yoin- marts, your Armies mutinous, 
Your Treasury Ijankiupt. Would you now revoke 

• Omitted in repri'seiitatiun, from " Be just,'' &c., line 167, to line 188. 



SCENE i] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 



81 



Your trust, so be it ! and I leave you, sole 

Suprenu'st Monarch oftiio niightkst roahn. 

From Ganges to the Icebeias : — Look witiiout 

No foe not humbled ! — Look within ; the Arts 

Quit for your schools — their old llesperides 

The golden Italy ! while through the veins ISO 

Of your vast empire flows in strencjthenintr tides 

Trade, the calm health of nations ! 

Sire, I know 
"i our smoother courtiers please you best — nor measure 
>Iyself with them, — yet sometimes I would doubt 
If Statesmen rock'd and dandled into power 
C^ould leave such legacies to kini^s ! 

(Louis appears irresolute.) 

Baradas (passing him, whispers). 

But Julie, 
Shall I not summon her to Court ? 

LOUIS (mot on s to Baradas and turns haughtily to the 

Cardinal). 

Enough ! 
"\ our Eminence must excuse a longer audience. 
To your own palace : — For our conference, this 190 

Nor place — nor season. 

RICHELIEV. 

Good my liege, for Justice 
All place a temple, and all reason, summer! — 
Do you deny me justice? — Saints of Heaven ! 
He turns from me \—Do you deny me justice/' 
For fifteen years, while in these hands dwelt Empire, 

The humblest craftsman — the obscurest vassal 

The verj- leper shrinking from the sun. 

Tho" loathed by Charity^ might a.sk for justice ! — 

Not with the fawning tone and crawling mien 

Of some I sec around you — Counts and Princes — 20() 

Kneeling for favours ;'— hut, erect and loud. 

As men who ask man's rights ! — my liege, my Louis, 

Do you refuse me justice— audience even — 

In the pale presence of the baffled Murthor ?* 

• For the haughty and rebuking tone which Richelitu assumed in his «- 
ixfttulations w.ih ihe King, see his Memoirs (passim) in iVuiot's coliection, 
vols L— 30 (Am). Montesquieu, in one of his brilliant antitheses, says Well of 
ttichelieu, '• II avila le roi, mais il i.histra le regiie." 

C 



82 



RICHELlbli ; Lact iv. 



LOUIS. 

Lord Cardinal-one by one you have sever'd from me 

The bonds of human love. All near and dear 

Mark'd out for vengeance— exile or the scaffold. 

You find me now amidst my trustiest friends, 

My closest kindred ;— you would tear them from me ; 

They murder you forsooth, since w^ they love. ^i^ 

Eno' of plots and treasons for one reign ! 

Home '.—Home ! and sleep away these phantoms ! 

RICHELIEU. 

Sire ! 

I patience, Heaven '.—sweet Heaven !-Sire, from the foot 

Of that Great Throne, these hands have raised aloft 

On an Olympus, looking dou n on mortals 

And worshipp'd by their awe— before the foot ^ 

Of that high throne,— spurn you the grey-hair-'d man, 

Who o-ave you empire — and now sues for safety ? 

LOUIS. 

;%^o : when we see your Eminence in truth 

At the foot of the throne— we'll listen to you. 220 

[^Exit Louis. 

ORLEANS. 

Saved ! 

BARADAS. 

For this deep thanks to Julie and to Mauprat ! 

RICHELIEU. 

My Lord de Baradas— I pray your pardon— 
You are to be my successor ! — your hand, sir ! 

BARADAS {aside). 

What can this mean ? — 

RICHELIEU. 

It trembles, see ! it trembles ! 
The liand that liolds the destinies of nations 
Ought to shake less !— poor Baradas '.—poor France ! 

BARADAS. 

Insolent 

[Exeunt Baradas and Orleans. 



SCENE IV,] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 83 



s c i: x I : T V 



RIC HEI.IEl'. 

Joseph — Dill vou hear the kinor ? 



JOSEPH. 



I did — there's danger! Had you been less haughty* 

RICHELIEU. 

And sutfor'd slaves to chuckle — "see the Cardinal 

How meek his Eminence is to-day" — I tell thee 230 

This is a strife in which the lothest look 
!■< the most subtle armour 

JOSEPH. 

But 



RICHKLIEU. 

No time 
For ifs and buts. I will accuse the.se traitors! 
Franqois shall witness that De Baradas 
Gave him the secret missive for De Bouillon, 
And told him life and death were in the scroll. 
I will— I will— 

JOSEPH. 

Tush ! Francjois is your creature ; 
So tliey will say, and laugh at you ! — your witness 
Must be that same Despatch. 

RICHELIEU. 

Away to Marion ! 

JOSEPH. 

I have been there — she is seized — removed — imprison 'd — 240 
By the Counts orders. 

• However " orguetUeur" and " co/ire" in his disputes with Louis, the Cardinal 

did not always disdain recourse to the arts of the courtier ;— oi ce, after an anirry 

discussion with the king, in which, as usual. Richelieu got the l.»-tter, Loui^us 

*' "J- quitted the palace tojjether, said, rudely, '• S.rtez U- premier ; voui .tus l.ien 

.01 i.e trance." '-Si je passe \e premier," replied the minister, after u rao- 

-nt s hesitation, and wi'h great aiiroitncss, " ce ne |H:ut ttie (jue comme le 

.■:s humble de vos serviteurs;" and he took a flambeau from one of the pages, 

ight the king as he walked before him—" en reculant et sans tourner le dos." 

o2 



84 



RICHELIEU; [act iv. 



RICHELIEU. 

Goddess of bright dreams. 
My Country— shalt thovi lose me now, when most 
Thou necd'st thy worshipper ? My native land ! 
Let mc but ward this dagger from thy heart, 
And die — but on thy bosom ! 

Enter Julie. 

JULIE. 

Heaven ! I thank thee ! 
I cannot be, or this all-powerful man 
Would not stand idly thus. 

RICHELIEU. 

What dost thou here ? 
Home ! 

JULIE. 

Home !— is Adrien there ?— you 're dumb— yet strive 
For words ; 1 see tliem trembling on your lip, ^5^ 

But choked by pity. It was truth— all truth !^ 
Seized— the Bastile — and in voiir presence too . 
Cardinal, where is Adrien? 'Think— he saved 
Your lifi' : — your name is infamy, if wrong 
Should come to his ! 

RICHELIEU. 

Be sooth'd, child. 

JULIE. 

Child no more ; 
I love, and I am woman ! Hope and suffer— 
Love, sutVering. ho]ie,— what else doth make the strength 
And majesty of woman ? — Where is Adrien ? 

RICHELIEU to JOSEPH. 

^'our youtli was never young— you never loved :— 260 

Speak to her — 

JOSEPH. 

Nay, take heed— the king's command, 
I'i.s true — I mean — the — 

JULIE to RICHELIEU. 

Let thine eyes meet mine ; 
Answer me but one word — I am a wife — 
I ask thee for my home— my fate— my all ! 
Where is my husband ? 



SCENE «-.] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 



85 



RICHELIEU. 

, ,,..,., . Vou arc Richelieu's ward, 

\ soldiers bride: they who insist on truth 

Must out-face fear ;— you ask me for your liusbaiid ? 

//i,-r^_^vhcre the clouds of heaven look darkest, o'er 

I lie domes of the Bastile ! 

JULIE. 

I thank you, father, 
I You see I do not shudder. Heaven forgive you '>;() 

The sin of this desertion ! 

RICHELIEU {detaining her). 

Whither wouldst thou 1 

JULIE. 

Stay me not. Fie! I should be there already. 
1 am thy wartl, and haply he may think 
Thou'st taught me also to'forsake'the wretched ! 

RICHELIEU. 

I've fiU'd those cells— with many — traitors all. 

Had they wives too .'—Thy meniuries. Power, are solemn ! 

l^oor sufferer !—thmk'st thou that yon gates of woe 

Unbar to love ? Alas ! if love once enter, 

'Tis for the last farewell; between those walls 

And the mute grave*— the blessed household sounds 2K() 

Only heard once— while, iiungering at the door. 

The headsman whets the axe. 

JULIE. 

O, mercy ! mercy ! 
oave hmi, restore him, father ! Art thou not 
TJie Cardinal-King?— the Lord of life and death— 
Beneath whose light, as deeps beneath the moon. 
The solemn tides of Empire ebb and flow .''— 
Art thou not Richelieu i* 

RICHELIEU. 

Yesterdav I was ! — 
To-day, a very weak old man !— i'o-morrow. 
I know not what ! 

JULIE, 

Do you conceive his meaning ? 
Alas ! I cannot. But,'methink3, my senses 200 

Are duller than they were ! 

Lw^l?.!!.:l''rT.'^^ ^°"'' ^^]^'^^'^' =^"^1" quel.,u-un pour crime (I'itat.et le 
Ijwre mour.r, letait a peu prts le mi-mf chose. — £f CUrc. 



gg RICHELIEU; U^t iv. 

JOSEPH. 

The King is chafed 
Acrainst his servant. Lady, while we speak. 
The lackey of the ante-room is not 
More po^^4rless than the Minister of France. 

RICHELIEU. 

And vet the air is still ; Heaven wears no cloud ;* 

From Nature's silent orbit starts no portent ^ 

To warn the unconscious world ;--albeit this night 

Mav with a morrow teem which, in my tall, 

Wo'uld carry earthquake to remotest lands. 

In" changJthe Christian globe. What would'st thou, woman^ 

Thy fate and his, with mine, for good or ill, ! -^^' 

Are woven threads. In my vast sum of life 

Millions such units merge. 

Enter First Courtier. 

FIRST COURTIER. 

Madame de Mauprat ! 
Pardon, your Eminence-even now I seek 
This lady's home— commanded by the King 
To pray her presence. 

JULIE (clinging to Richelieu). 

Think of my dead father !— 
Think, how, an infant, clinging to your knees. 
And looking to your eyes, the wrinkled care 
Fled from four brow before the smile of childhood. 
Vvvsh from the dews of heaven ! Think of this, ^ 1" 

And take me to your breast. 

RICHELIEU. 

To those who sent you ! — 
And say you found the virtue they would slay 
Here— couch'd upon this heart, as at an altar. 
And shelter'd by the wings of sacred Rome ! 
Begone ! 

FIRST COURTIER. 

My Lord, I am your friend and servant— 
Mi'^iudcre me not ; but never yet was Louis 
So rousT^l against you :-shall I take this answer ?- 
It were to be your foe. 

* Omitted iu representation from line 295 to 302. 



SL£NK ir^.] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. S7 

RICHELIEl. 

AH time my foe, 
11 I, ;i Priest, couM cast this holy Sorrow- 
Forth from her last asylum ! 

FIRST COURTIER. 

He is lost ! ^.jO 

(Exit First Court U-r.) 

RICHELIEU. 

God help thee, child !_she hears not ! Look upon her ' 
I he storm, that rends the oak, uproots the flower. 
Her lather loved me so ! and in that a^e 
U hen Incnds are brothers ! She has heon to me 
^oother, nurse plaything, daughter. Are these tears '* 
yJn ! shame, shame ! — dotage ! 

JOSEPH. 

r,,. ^ , , , Tears are not for eyes 

I hat rather need the lightning, which can pierce ' 
1 hrough barred gates and triple walls, to smite 

Crime, where it cowers in secret !— The Despatch • 

feet every spy to work ;— the morrow's sun 330 

Alust see that written treason in your hands. 

Or rise upon your ruin. 

RICHELIEU. 

Av — and close 
tpon my corpse !— I am'not made to live- 
Friends, glory, France, all reft from me;— my st.ir 
^ike some vain holiday mimicry of fire. 
Piercing imperial heaven, and falling down 
Kayless and blacken'd, to the dust— a thino- 
For all men's feet to trample ! Yea !-to-morrow 
1 numph or death ! Look up, child !— Lead us, Josej.!,. 



As they are going out, enter Baradas and De Dcringhen. 



B.\R.\DAS. 



My Lord, the King cannot believe your Eminence 340 

I feo lar forgets your duty, and his greatness. 

As to resist his mandate ! Pray you. Madam, 
I Ubey the King— no cause for fear ! 

' tea*s^'Th?X?' m"!^'"'^' R'^helieu appears to hare been easily mov.d to 
SnesT whi/v. . ''•, ""^^ ^"' '*'" hardest jnterpretatiou un that ln.nia„« 

rletar^uIn^U rouS- "'"' "" ""*^''^ ten^.^ameuta, ,aid that -11 



88 RICHELIEU ; [act iv. 

JVLIE. 

My father ! 

RICHELIEU. 

She shall not stir ! 

BARADAS. 

You are not of her kindred — 
An orphan — 

RICHELIEU. 

And her country is her mother ! 

BARADAS. 

The country is the King I 

RICHELIEU. 

Ay, is it so ; — 
Then wakes the power which in the age of iron 
Burst forth to curb the great, and raise the low. 
Mark, where she stands ! — around her form I draw 
The awful circle of our solemn church ! 350 

Set but a foot within that holy ground. 
And on thy head — yea, though it wore a crown — 
I launch the curse of Rome ! 

BARADAS. 

I dare not brave you ! 
I do but speak the orders of my King. 
7'he churcfi, your rank, power, very word, my Lord, 
Siiffice you for resistance : — blame yourself, 
I f it should cost you power ! 

RICHELIEU. 

That my stake. — Ah ! 
Dark gamester I what is thine 9 Look to it well ! — 
Lose not a trick. — By this same hour to-morrow 
'J'hou shalt have France, or I thy head ! 

BARADAS {aside to De Beringhen). 

He cannot 360 

Have the despatch ? 

DE BERINGHEN. 

No : were it so, your stake 
Were lost already. 

JOSEPH (aside). 

Patience is your game : 
Reflect you have not the Despatch ! 



SCENE IV.] OH, THE CONSIMKACY. 89 

RICHKLIEU. 

O! monk! 
Leave patience to tlie saints — for / am luiman ! 
Did not thy father die for Franco, poor orphan ! 
And now they say thou ha»t no faliier! — Fie ! 
Art thou not pure and good ? — if so, thou art 
A part of that — the Beautiful, the Sacred — 
Which in all climes, men that have hearts adore, 
By the great title of their mother country 1 370 

BAR A DAS (^riside). 
He ^\anders ! 

RICHELIEU. 

So cling close unto my breast, 
Here where thou droop'st — lies France ! I am very feeble — 
Of little use it seems to either now. 
Well, well — we will ga home. 

BARADAS. 

In sooth, my Lord, 
You do need rest — the burthens of the state 
Overtask your health ! 

RICHELIEU (to Joseph). 
Fm patient, see ! 

BARADAS {aside). 

His mind 
And life are breaking fast ! 

RICHELIEU (overhearing him). 

Irreverent ribbald ! 
If so, beware the falling ruins! Hark ! 
I tell thee, scorner of these whitening hairs, 
When this snow melteth there shall corne a flood ! 380 

Avaunt ! my name is Richelieu — I defy thee! 
Walk l)lindfold on ; behind thee stalks the headsman. 
Ha ! ha ! — how pale he is ! Heaven save my country ! 

[Falls back in Joseph's arms. 

(Baradas exit, followed by De Beringhcn, betraying his 
exultation by his gestures.) 

END OF ACT IV. 



(JO RICHELIEU; [act v. 



ACT V. 

SCENE I. 

The Bastile — a corridor — in the back-ground the door of one 

of the condemned cells. 

Enter Jose^jh and Gaoler. 

GAOLER. 

Stay, father, I will call the governor. [Exit Gaoler. 

JOSEPH. 

He has it, then — this Huguet ; — so we learn 
From Francois; — Humph ! Now if I can but gain 
One moment's access, all is ours ! The Cardinal 
Trembles 'tween life and death. His life is power : — 
Smite one — slay both ! No ^Esculapian drugs. 
By learned quacks baptised with Latin jargon, 
FiCr bore the healing which that scrap of parchment 
Will medicine to Ambition's flagging heart. 
France shall be saved — and Joseph be a bishop ! 

Enter Governor and Joseph. 

GOVERNOR. 

Father, you wish to see the prisoners Huguet 
And the young knight De Mauprat? 

JOSEPH. 

So my office. 
And the Lord Cardinal's order warrant, son ! 

GOVERNOR. 

Father, it cannot be : Count Baradas 

Has summon'd to the Louvre Sieur De Mauprat. 

JOSEPH. 

Well, well ! But Huguet— 

GOVERNOR. 

Dies at noon. 



10 



-cKNEi] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 91 

JOSEPH. 

At noon ! 
Xo moment to delay ^he pious rites 
Which fit tlio soul lor death — quick, quick — admit me ! 

GOVERNOR. 

\ ou cannot enter, monk ! Such are my orders ! 



JOSEPH. 

Orders ! vain mii/i ! —the Cardinal still is minister. 
His orders crusn all others 



20 



I 



GOVERNOR {lifting his hat). 

Save his king's ! 
See, monk, the royal sign and seal affix'd 
To the count's mandate. None may have access 
To either prisoner, Huguet or De ]\Iauprat, 
Not even a priest, without the special passport 
Of Count de Baradas. I'll hear no more ! 

JOSEPH. 

Just Heaven ! and are we baffled thus ! — Despair!! 
Think on tlie Cardinal's power — beware his anger. 

GOVERNOR. 

I'll not be menaced. Priest ! Besides, the Cardinal 

Is dying and disgraced — all Paris knows it. 30 

"i'ou hear the prisoner's knell. [^Bell tolls. 

JOSEPH. 

I do beseech you — 
The Cardinal is not dying — But one moment 
And — hist ! — five thousand pistoles ! — 

GOVERNOR. 

How ! a bribe! 
And to a soldier, grey with years of honour ! 
Begone ! — 

JOSEPH. 

Ten thousand — twenty! — 



This monk without our walls. 



GOVERNOR. 

Gaoler — put 



92 RICHELIEU ; [act v. 

« 

JOSEPH. 

By those grey hairs^ 
Yea, by tins badge (touching the cross of St. Louis worn by 
the Governor^ — 

the guerdon of your valour — 
By all your toils — hard days and sleepless nights — 
Borne in your country's service, noble son — 
Let me but see the prisoner ! — 

GOVERNOR. 

No !— 40 

JOSEPH. 

He hath 
Secrets of state — papers in which 

GOVERNOR {inten-ujjting). 

I know — 
Such was his message to Count Baradas, 
Doubtless the Count will see to it — 

JOSEPH. 

The Count ! 
Then not a hope ! — You shall — 

GOVERNOR. 

Betray my trust ! 
Never — not one word more — you heard me, gaoler ! 

JOSEPH. 

What can be done ? — distraction ! — Richelieu yet 

Must — what? — I know not — thought, nerve, strength, forsake 

me. 
Dare you refuse the Church her holiest rights ? 

GOVERNOR. 

I refuse nothing — I obey my orders — 50 

JOSEPH. 

And st'll your country to her parricides ! 
Oil, tremble yet ! — Richelieu 

GOVERNOR. 

Begone ! 

JOSEPH. 

Undone ! ^ 

{Exit Joseph.) 

S 



I 



SCENE I ] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 93 

aOVEUNOR. 

A most audacious shavi-ling — interdicted 
Above all others by the Count — 

GAOLER. 

I hope, Sir, 
I shall not lose my perquisites. The Sieur 
De Mauprat will not be reprieved? 

GOVERNOR. 

Oh, fear not ; 
The Count's commands by him who camo for Mauprat 
Are to prepare headsmen and axe by noon ; 
The Count will give you perquisites enough ; 
Two deaths in one day ! 

GAOLER. 

Sir, may Heaven reward him ! GO 
Oh, by the way, that troublesome young fellow, 
Who calls himself the prisoner Huguct's son, 
Is here again — implores, weeps, raves, to see him. 

GOVERNOR. 

Poor youth, I pity him ! 

Enter De Beringheii, followed by Fratit^ois. 

DE BERTNGHEN (to Franrois). 

Now. prithee, friend. 
Let go my cloak ; you really discompose me. 

FRANCOIS. 

No, they will drive me hence : my father ! Oh ! 
Let me but see him once — but once — one moment ! 

DE BERINGIIEN {to Govcmor). 

Your servant, Messire, — this poor rascal, Iluguet, 

Has sent to see the Count de Baradas 

Upon state secrets, that afflict his conscience. 70 

The Count can't leave his Majesty an instant : 

I am his proxy. 

GOVERNOR. 

The Count's word is law ! 
Again, young scapegrace ! How com'st thou admitted .' 

DE BERINGIIEN. 

Oh ! a most fdial fellow : Huguet's son ! 



94 RICHELIEU; [act v. 

I found him whimpering in the court below. 
I pray his leave to say good bye to father. 
Before that very long luipleasant journey 
Father's about to take. Let him wait here 
Till I return. 

FRANCOIS. 

No ; take me with you. 

DE BERINGIIEN. 

Nay; 
After me, friend — the Public first ! 

GOVERNOR. 

The Count's 80 

Commands are strict. No one must visit Hug^uet 
Without his passport. 

DE BERINGHEN. 

Here it is ! Pshaw ! nonsense ! 
rU be your surety. See, my Cerberus, 
He is no Hercules ! 

GOVERNOR. 

Well, you're responsible. 
Stand there, friend. If, when you come out, my Lord, 
The youth slip in, 'tis your fault. 

DE BERINGHEN. 

So it is ! 
\^Exit through the door of the cell, followed by the Gaoler. 

GOVERNOR. 

Be calm, my lad. Don't fret so. I had once 

A father too ! I'll not be hard upon you. 

And so stand close. I must not see you enter: 

You understand. Between this innocent youth 90 

And that intriguing monk there is, in trutli, 

A wide distinction. 

Re-enter gaoler. 

Come, we'll go our rounds ; 
I'll give you just one quarter of an hour; 
And if my Lord leave first, make my excuse. 
Yet stay, the gallery's long and dark ; no sentry 
I'^ntil lie reach the gyrate below. He'd best 
Wait till I come. If he should lose the way, 
We may not be in call. 



scKNK II.] OR, THE COXSPIHACY. 95 

FRANCOIS. 

I'll tell him, .Sir,— 

[Exeunt Governor and Gaoler. 
He's a wise son that knoweth his own father. 
I've forged a precious one ! So far, so well ! 100 

Alas, what then ^ this wretch has sent to Baradas — 
Will sell the scroll to ransom life. Oh, Heaven ! 
On what a thread hangs hope ! 

[Listens at the door. 
Loud words — a cry ! 
[Looks through the key -hole. 
Tlicy struggle ! Ho ! — the packet ! ! ! 

[Tries to open the door. 
Lost ! He has it — 
The courtier has it — Huguet, spite his chains. 
Grapples ! — well done ! Now — now ! 

[Draws back. 
The gallery's long ! 
And this is left us ! 

[Drawing his dagger, and standing behind the door. 

Re-enter De Beringhen, with the packet. 
Victory ! 

Yield it, robber — 
\ ield it — or die — 

[A short struggle. 

DE BERINGHEN. 

OtT ! ho '.—there ! — 

FRANCOIS (grappling with him). 

Death or honour ! — 

[Exeunt struggling. 



SCENE H. 

The King's closet at the Louvre. A suite of rooms in 
perspective at one side. 

Baradas — Orleans. 

BARADAS. 

All smiles ! the Cardinal's swoon of yesterday 

Heralds his death to-day ; — could he sur\ive, ] U) 



96 RICHELIEU ; [act v. 

It would not be as minister — so great 

The kings resentment at the priest's defiance ! 

All .smiles ! — and yet, should this accurs'd De Mauprat 

Have given our packet to another — 'Sdeath ! 

I dare not think of it ! 

ORLEANS. 

You've sent to search him ? 

BARADAS. 

Sent, Sir, to search ? — that hireling hands may find 

Upon him, naked, with its broken seal, 

That scroll, whose every word is death ! No — no — 

These hands alone must clutch that awful secret. 

I dare not leave the palace, night or day, 120 

While Richelieu lives— his minions — creatures — spies — 

Not one must reach the king ! 

ORLEANS. 

What hast thou done ? 

BARADAS. 

Summon-d De Mauprat hither? 

ORLEANS. 

Could this Huguet, 
Who pray'd thy presence with so fierce a fervour, 
Have thieved the scroll ? 

BARADAS. 

Huguet was housed with us. 
The very moment we dismiss'd the courier. 
It cannot be ! a stale trick for reprieve, 
liut, to make sure, I've sent our tru5:tiest friend 
'i'o s'.e and sift liini. — Hist ! here comes the King — 
How fare you. Sire ? 

Enter Louis. 

LOUIS. 

In the same mind I have 130 

Decided ! yes, he would forbid your presence. 
My brother, — your's, my friend, — then Julie, too ; 
Thwarts — braves — defies — {suddenly turning to Baradas) We 

make you minister. 
Gaston, for you — the baton of our armies. 
You love me, do you not ? 



cENE n.J OR. THK COXSPIKACY. 97 



ORLEANS. 



Oh, love yo»i, Sire * 
aside.) — Never so much as nuw. 



BAR AD AS. 



May I deserve 
> our trust (aside) — until you sicrn vour abdication ! 
My hege, but one way ieft'to daunt' De Mauprat, 
And Julie to divorce. — We must prepare 

Tlie death-writ; what, tho' sign'd and sea I'd ? we can 140 

Withhold the enforcement. 



LOUIS. 



Ah, you may prepare it ; 
We need not urge it to effect. 

BARADAS. 

Exactly ! 
No haste, my liege (looking at his watch, and aside). He 
may live one hour longer. 

(Enter Courtier). 

COURTIER. 

The Lady JuHe, Sire, implores an audience. 

LULIS. 

Aha ! repentant of her folly ! — Well. 
Admit her. 

BARADAS. 

Sire, she comes for Mauprat s pardon, 
And the conditions 

LOUIS. 

Vou are minister, 
*>e leave to you our answer. 

-iv Julie enters,— the Captain 0/ the Archeis, by another 
door, — and urhispers Baradas). 

CAPTAIN. 

The Chevalier 
De Mauprat waits below. 

BARADAS {aside). 
Now the despatch 1 [E.Tit with Offi-r^ 

H 



98 RICHELIEU, [act v. 

Enter Julie. 

JULIE 

My lieae, you sent, for me. I come where Grief 150 

Should come when guiltless, while the name of Kuig 
Is holy on the earth '.—Here, at the feet 
Of Power, I kneel for mercy. 

LOUIS. 

Mercy, Julie, 
Is an affair of state. The Cardinal should 
In this be your interpreter. 

JULIE. 

Alas ! 
I know not if that mighty spirit now 
Stoop to the things of earth. Nay, while I speak. 
Perchance ho hears the orphan by the throne 
Where. Kings themselves need pardon ; O my liege. 
Be father to the fatherless ; in you ' *J^ 

Dwells my last hope ! 

Enter Baradas. 

BAR AD AS (aside). 
He has not the despatch ; 
Smiled, while we search'd. and braves me.— Oh ! 

LOUIS (gently). 

What would'st thou ? 

JULIE. 

A sin<rle life.— You reign o'er millions. — What 
Is onejnav's life to you ?— and yet to 7ne 
'Tis France— 'tis earth— 'tis everything !— a lite— 
A human life— my husband's. 

LOUIS (aside). 

Speak to her, 
I am not marble,— give her hope— or— 

HARADAS. 

Madam, 
Vex not your King, whose heart, too soft for justice. 
Leaves to his ministers that solemn charge. 

[Louis walks up the stage.] 

f 



SCENE 1..] OH, TlIK CONSPIRACY 

^'ou were his t'rieiui. 



99 

JULIK. 



HARADAS. 

I WY/.v before I loved thee. 170 

JULIK. 

Loved me ! 

BARADAS. 

Hush. Julie: couldst thou niisiuterpiei 
My acts, thoughts, motives, uay, my very words. 
Here — m this palace f 

JULIE. 

Now I know I'm mad; 
Lven that memory fail'd me. 

BARADAS. 

I am youno^, 
\> ell-born and brave as Mauprat :— for thy sake 
I peril what he has not — fortune — power ; 
All to j2:reat souls most dazzling. I alone 
Can save thee from yon tyrant,"now my puppet, ! 
Be mine ; annul the mockery of this marriage. 
And on the day I clasp thee 'to my breast " ' ISO 

De Mauprat shall be free. 

JULIE. 

Thou durst not speak 
Thus m his ear {pointing to Loin.,). Thou double traitor !_ 

tremble. 
1 will unmask thee. 

BARADAS. 

I will sav thou ravest. 
And see this scroll ! its letters shall be blood ! 
Go to the King, count with me word for word ; 
And while you'pray the life— I write the sentence ! 

JULIE. 

Stay, stay' {ru.shmg to th. King). Vou have a kind and 

princely heart, 
Tho" sometimes it is silent : you were born 
To power~\i has not flushd you into madness, 
As It doth meaner men. Banish my husband— 190 

Dissolve our marriage— cast me to that grave 
Of human ties, where hearts congeal to ice. 

In the dark convent's everlasting winter 

(Surely eno' for justice — hate— revenue) 

H 2 



100 RICHFXTEU ; t^^'^ ^^• 

But spare this life, thus lonely, scathed, and bloomless ; 
And when thou stand'st for judgment on thine own. 
The deed shall shine beside thee as an angel. 

LOUIS {much affected). 
Go, go, to Baradas : annul thy marriage, 
^"'^Ti^iE {anxiously, and watching ht.s countenance^ 
Be his bride ! 

LOUIS. 

A form, a mere decorum, 
Thou know' St I love thee. 

JULIE. 

O thou sea of shame, 200 

And not one star. 

(The Kinrr goes up the stage, and passes through the suite of 
rooms at the side in evident emotion.) 

BARADAS. 

Well, thy election, Julie ; 
This hand— his grave! 

JULIE. 

Hi.s Tave ! and I — 

o 
BARADAS. 

Can save him. — 
Swear to be mine. 

JULIE. 

That were a bitterer death ! 
Avaunt, tliou tempter ! I did ask his life 
A boon, and not the barter of dishonour. . 

The heart can break, and scorn you : wreak your mahce ; 
Adrien and I will leave you this sad earth. 
And pass together hand in hand to Heaven ! 

BARADAS. 

You have decided. 
[ Withdraws to the side scene for a moment, and returns.] 

Listen to me, Lady ; , 

I am no base intriguer. I adored thee ^^^ 

From the first glance of those inspirmg eyes ; 
With thee entwined ambition, hope, the future. 
/ xuill not lose thee ! I can place thee nearest — 



sLh.NL II.] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. lOl 

Ay, to the throne — nay, on the throne, perchance; 
Mv star is at its zenith. Look upon me; 
Hast thou decided ? 

JILIK. 

No, no ; you can see 
How weak I am : be human. Sir — one moment. 

B.VRADAS {stamping his foot, De Mniiprat appears at the 
side of the stage, gvanled). 

Behold thy husband ! — Sliall he pass to death, 
And know thou could'st have saved him ? 

JULIE. 

Adrien, speak ! 
But say you wish to lire ! — if not your wife, 220 

Your slave, — do with me as you will ? 

DE MAUPRAT. 

Once more! — 
Why this is mercy, Count ! Oh, think, my Julie, 
Life, at the best, is short, — but love immortal ! 

DARAOAS (taking Julie's hand). 
Ah, loveliest — 

JULIE. 

(lO, that touch has made me iron. 
He have decided — death ! 

BARAUAs (/o De Mauprat). 

Now, say to whom 
I Thou gavest the packet, and thou yet shall live. 

DE MAUPRAT. 

1 I'll lell thee nothing ! 

BARADAS. 

Hark, — the rack ! 

DE MAUPRAT. 

■ Thy penance 
I "or ever, wretch ! — What rack is like the conscience? 

JULIE. 

[ ^hall be with thee soon. % 

BARADAS ((riving the urit to the OJJicer). 
Hence, to the headsman. 



102 RICHELIEU ; [act v. 

The doors are thrown open. The Hnissier announces " His 
Eminence the Cardinal Duke de Richelieu." 

Enter Richelieu, attended by Gentlemen, Pages, Sfc, pale, 
feeble, and leaning on Joseph, followed hy three Secretaries 
of State, attended by Sub- secretaries with papers, 8(c. 

JULIE (rushing to Richelieu). 
You live — you live — and Adrian shall not die ! 230 

RICHELIEU. 

Not if an old man's prayers, himself near death. 
Can aught avail thee, daughter! Count, you now 
Hold what I held on earth : — one boon, my Lord, 
This soldier's life. 

BARADAS. 

The stake, — my head ! — you said it. 
I cannot lose one trick. — Remove your prisoner. 

JULIE. 

No!— No!— 

Enter Louis from the rooms beyond. 

RICHELIEU {to Officer). 

Stay, Sir, one moment. My good liege. 
Your worn-out servant, willing, Sire, to spare you 
Some pain of conscience, would forestall your wishes. 
1 do I'esign my office. 

DE MAUPRAT. 

You ! 

JULIE. 

All's over ! 

RICHELIEU. 

My end cfraws near. These sad ones, Sire, I love them, 240 
I do not ask his life; but suffer justice 
To halt, until I can dismiss his soul. 
Charged with an old man's blessing. 

LOUIS. 

Surely ! 

BARADAS. 

Sire 



LOUIS. 

Silence — small favour to a dying servant. 



SCENE III.] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 1U3 

RICHELIEU. 

You would consiorn your armies to the baton 

Of your most honour'd brother. Sire, so be it I 

Your minister, the Count de Haradas ; 

A most sagacious choice ! — Your Secretaries 

Of State attend me, Sire, to render up 

The ledgers of a realm. — I do beseech you. 'i'^O 

Sutler these noble gentlemen to learn 

The nature of the glorious task that waits them, 

Here, in my presence. 

LOUIS. 

You say well, my Lord. 
(To Secretaries, as he seats himself.) 
.Approach, Sirs. 

RICHELIEU. 

I — I — faint ! — air — air — 

{Joseph and a gentleman assist him to a sofa, placed beneath 

a window.) 

I thank you — 
Draw near, my children. 

B.\RADAS. 

He's too weak to question, 
Nay, scarce to speak ; all's safe. 



SCENE III. 



Manent Richelieu, Mauprat, and Julie, the last kneeling be- 
side the Cardinal ; the Officer of the Guard behind Mau- 
prat. Joseph near Richelieu, watching the King. Louis. 
Baradas at the back of the King's rhair, anxious and 
disturbed. Orleans at a greater distance, careless and 
triumphant. The Secretaries. As each Secretary advances 
in his turn, he takes the portfolios from the Sub-secretaries. 

FIRST secki;taky. 

The afl'airs of Poiuiiial. 
Most urgent. Sire; — One sliort month since tin- Duke 
Braganza was a rebel. 



104 RICHELIEU; [act v. 

LOUIS. 

And is still ! 

FIRST SECRETARY. 

No, Sire, he has succeeded ! He is now 

Crown'd King of Portugal — craves instant succour 260 

Against the arms of Spain. 

LOUIS. 

We will not grant it 
Against his lawful king. Eh, Count ? 

BARADAS. 

No, Sire. 

FIRST SECRETARY. 

But Spain's your deadliest foe : whatever 
Can weaken S})ain must strengthen France. The Cardinal 
Would send the succours: — {solemnly) — balance, Sire, of 
Europe ! 

LOUIS. 

The Cardinal ! — balance ! — We'll consider. — Eh, Count ? 

BARADAS. 

Yes, Sire ; — fall back. 

FIRST SECRETARY. 

But 

BARADAS. 

Oh ! fall back, Sir. 

JOSEPH. 

Humph ! 

SECOND SECRETARY. 

The affairs of England, Sire, most urgent : Charles 

The First has lost a battle that decides 

One half his realm, — craves moneys, Sire, and succour. 270 

LOUIS. 

He shall have both. — Eh, Baradas ? 

BARADAS. 

Yes, Sire. 
(Oh thai despatch ! — my veins are fire !) 



I 



SCENE m] OR, THE CONSPIRACY. 105 

RICHELIEU (^feebly, but vith great dhtnictness.) 

I'orgive me— Charles's cause is lost ! A man. 
Named Cronnvell, risen— a great man !— your succour 
>>ould tail— your loans be squander'd !— Pause reflect.* 

LOUIS. 

Rertect.— Eh, Baradas ? 

BAKADAS. 

Reflect, Sire. 

JOSEPH. 

Humph ! 
LOUIS (aside). 

I half repent ! — No successor to Richelieu ! 

Round me thrones totter !— dynasties dissolve ! 

The soil he guards alone escapes the earthquake ! 

JOSEPH. 

Our star not yet eclipsed !— you mark the Kin a ? 280 

Oh ! had we the despatch ! "' 

RICHKLIEU, 

...,,, , Ah ! Joseph !~Child— 

>V ould I could help thee ! 

Enter Gentleman, uhtsjjers Josejih, who exit hastily. 
BARADAS (to Secretary). 
Sir, fall back. 

.SECOND SECRETARY. 

But 

BAKADAS. 

Pshaw, Sir ! 
THIRD SECRETARY {mysteriously). 

The .secret correspondence, Sire, most urgent, 

Accounts of spies — deserters — heretics 

A ssassms— poisoners — schemes against yourself!- 

LOUIS. 

Wy«e///_most urgent '.—{looking on the docwnents.) 

^^»*'^'".''*V^"l.'^ cf''"'" '"'• ''•• ^^^ striking and brilliant chapter from which 
'aterluUe of the Secretaries is borrowed, * 



^Qg RICHELIEU ; l^^-^ v- 

Re-enter Joseph with Frangois , whose PonrpomtisstreM 
Stl Mood. Francois passes behind the CaMsatt^^^^^ 
ants, and, sheltered by them from the sight of Baradas, Sfc, 
falls at Richelieu s feet. 

FRANi}OIS. 

O ! my Lord ! 

RICHELIEU. 

Thou art bleeding ! 

FRANqOIS. 

A scratch-l have not fail'd ! {gives the packet.) 

RICHELIEU. 

}^u^\\\— {looking at the content.^\) 

THIRD SECRETARY {tO King). 

Sire, the Spaniards 
Have reinforced their army on the frontiers. 
The Due de Bouillon ■ 

RICHELIEU. 

Hold 1— In this department— 
A paper-here, Sire,--read yourself-then take 2J0 

The Count's advice int. 

Enter De Beringhen hastily, and draws aside Baradas. 
{Richelieu, to Secretary, giving an open parchment.) 
BARADAS {bursting from De Beringhen). 
What ! and reft it from thee ! 
Ha !— hold ! 

JOSEPH. 

Fall back, son,— it is your turn now ! 

BARADAS. 

Death I— the Despatch ! 

LOUIS {reading). 

To Bouillon— and sign d Orleans 1 — 

Baradas, too '.—league with our foes of Spain !— „ 

Lead our Italian armies— what ! to Fans .— .-^ 

Capture the KinK-my health requu-e repose- 



^, 



^CKNE .M.J OR, THE CONSP/RACY. ,0, 

Make me subscribe my proper abdication- 
Orleans, my brother Kegent !_Saints of Heaven • 
lliese are the men I loved ! 

{Baradas draus.-attempts to rush out,-i, arrested 
Orleans, endeaiotrrinff to escave mn^. \ ^ urra^teu. 
Josephs eye, und stop Ahort.)^ "'" ^"''^'^^' '"''^''' 

{Richelieu falls back.) 

JOSEPH. 

See to the Cardinal ! 300 

BAR A DAS. 

He's dying !_and I yet shall dupe the King 1 

LOUIS (rushing to Richelieu). 
- ichelieu l-Lord Cardinal !-'tis / resign !- 
Keign thou ! ® 

JOSEPH. 

Alas ! too late !— he faints ! 

LOUIS. 

Reign, Richelieu ! 
RICHELIEU (^feebly). 
With absolute power .'' 

LOUIS. 

,- , - Most absolute !— Oh ! live '— 

It not tor me — lor France ! 

RICHELIEU. 

i France ! 

LOUIS. 

ri,^ ^ , Oh ! this treason ' 

The army-Orleans-Bouillon-Heavens !_the Sp^miard •- 
•N here will they be next week ? Spaniard . 

RICHELIEU (starting up). 

There, — at my feet ! 
(To First and Second Secretary.) 
: ^re the clock strike !_The Envoys have their answer ! 
(To Third Secretary, vith a ring.) 
■^ to De Chavigny— he knows the rest— 



108 



RICHELIEU; 



[act v. 



No need of parchment here-he ^^^^'^;^'^,^\^ ^^-^^ 3IO 

For sleep-tor food.-In my name — Ml^E . he 

Arrest the Due de Bouillon at the head 

Of his armv !^Ho 1 there. Count de Baradas 

Thou hast lost the stake !— Away with him ! 

iAs the Guards open the folding-doo.., a vie. ofj^ejnt^^^^^^^^ 

^beyond, lined with Courtiers. Baradas passes through 

the line.) 

Ha !— ha !— 

{Snatching De Mauprafs death-warrant from the officer.) 

See here De Mauprat's death-writ, Julie!— 
ParchmenV for baUledores !-Embrace your husband !- 
At last the old man blesses you . 

JULIE. 

O joy ! 
You are ^aved ; you live-1 hold you in these arms. 

MAUPUAT. 

Never to part — 

JULIE. 

No — never, Adrien— never ! 

LOUIS (peevishly). 
One moment makes a startling cure, Lord Cardinal ; f 320 

KICHELIEU. 

Av Sire, for in one moment there did pass 

lut; this wither d frame the might ot f '•^j^;^;^'- ^ ^^^^ , 

Mv own clear France-I have thee yet-I ha e saved thee . 

I aasp thee still !-it was thy voice that call d me 

Back from the tomb '.-What mistress like our country ? 

" t^T^ Ldr^lesuscitationof Richelieu (-t to strain too much -J.^ r^al 

,a^s.on which supports h.o, in thi-enO -« conf^^^^^^^^^^ 

Mmulating part o u. character ^^^e eKtraordin^^^^^ y ,^„t 

i^:r;.,r;:. 7^^%:; ^^fJ^ t. .«. «.«»=». .0 ».u« i 

vtatt up full of anim.ition, energy, and lite. 



J 



SCENE ni] OR, THE CONSPFRACY. 109 

LOl IS. 

For Mauprat's pardon— woll ! But Julio.— Richelieu, 
Leave me one tliina to love ! — 

lUCHELlKU. 

A subject's luxury I 
let. if you must love somethiu'j, Sire,— /oir 'mc .' 

I.OUIS (\mt/ing in spite of himself). 
Fair proxy for a young fresh Demoiselle ! 

RICHELIEU. 

Your heart speaks for my clients .—Kneel, my children, 330 
And thank your King — 



JULIE. 



Ah, tears like these, my liege, 
are dews that mount to Heaven. 

LOUIS. 

Rise — rise — be happy. 
(Richf'/ieu beckons to De Beringhen.) 
DE BERINGHEN (fu/tenng/y). 
My Lord— you are— most— happily— recover'd. 

RICHELIEU. 

But you are pale, dear Beringhen .-—this air 

Suns not your delicate frame— I long have thoucrht so — 

bleep not another night in Paris .— Go,— 

Or else your precious life may be in danger. 

Leave France, dear Beringhen ! "^ 

DE BERINGHEN. 

, . , , , 1 shall have time, 

More than I ask d for.— to discuss the pate. 

[Exit De Beringhen. 
RICHELIEU {to Orleans). 
For you, repentance— absence— and confession! .340 

{To Frangois.) 
Vever say fail again.— Brave Boy! 

{To Joseph.) 

He'll be— 
i Bishop first. 



I 



j^Q RICHELIEU. [^" ^• 

JOSEPH. 

Ah, Cardinal — 

RICHELIEU. 

Ah, Joseph ! 
(To Louis-as De Mauprat and JuUe converse apart). 
See mv liege-see thro' plots and counterplots- 
ThroVain and loss-thro' glory and disgrace- 
Ilong^the plains, where passionate D.cord rears 
Eternal Babel-still the holy stream 
Of human happiness glides on . 

LOUIS. 

And must we 
Thank for that also-our prime Minister ? 

RICHELIEU. 

>4o-let us own it -.-there is One above 
Svvays the harmonious mystery of the world 
Ev'n better than prime "^^"^^^^^^ '"^^^^ , 

Our crlories float between the earth and heaven 
Like clouds which seem pavdions of the sun. 
And are the playthings of the casual wmd; 
Sti hke the^loud w'hch drops on unseen crags 
11 ; d ws the wild flower feeds on, our ambition 
May from its airy height drop gladness down 
On unsuspected virtue ;-and the flower 
May bless the cloud when it hath passd away . 



THE END OF RICHELIEU. 



350 



* Thei>«age and the sentiment in the excluding lines are borrowed fron.^ 
ssaue in on'e of the writings attributed to the Cardinal. 



passag 



ODE S. 



I 



ADVKRTISKMKNT TO THK oDRs. 



T..K c„„„<..vi„n bolw , ,1,0 l.vr,.. „„,, nrama.l. („„„, 

"< l.<.o„calco,„p„si,i„„ is sufficieml, anc,™, a„,los.aWisl,o,l 
"• "arrant ,„e. 1 ,r„s,. i„ subjoining ,„ an IIis,„ncal Phy 
.brco a..cu,p,s, equally elaborate, in the less cul,iva,e,l a,t 
■f .i.o Historical Ode. Wri„e„ at least, „■„,. u,e advantage 
^1 mature experience, I venture t„ express a hope that these 
' <'es mav. in some degree, redeem the faults of p„en,s nut 
'■■■■>1'. a few jears since, in the rashness of earlv youth _ 
" > -qture an additional apology for associating then. 
«"'■ ".e Drantaof .. Riehel.eu,- let -ne f,.anldvacl.„„„ledge 
I1-. I am not uninfluenced by the belief, that, should their 
.note obtrusive companion „,eet with any success, they are 
■koly to obtain a larger cirel.. of readers, and therefore a 
f:>.rer judgment, than, .„ the present tndisposition to poe,ry 
an author whose reputation, such as it ,„„v be. lies in other 
Joparttnents of l.teratore. could reasonably e.vpec, for a 
volutne exdustvely devoted to lyrical composit.ons : an,l 
"n the other hand, ,f .mpartial judges should pass an ,„,- 
favourable verdict on the.r pre.ens.ons. I have, at leas,, ,,ut 
•hem lorward in a more unassuming sha,,e than ,ha, of a 
separate publication. 



/^mlon, Mnrch 5, 1839. 



ODE I. 



TIIK 



l.AST DAYS OF QURK\ ELIZAIJKTH. 






I. 



Ris'e i'roni thy bloody grave 
Thou soft Medusa of the Fated Line* 
^Vhose evil beauty look'd to death the Brave ;- 

Discrowned Queen, around whose passionate shame 
I error and Grief the palest flowers entwine. 
That ever veil'd tlie ruins of a Name 
With the sweet parasites of song divine!— 

Arise, sad Ghost, arise, 
And, if Revenge outlive the Tomb, 
Thou art avenged-Behold the Doomcr brought to Doon. 1 



1 2 



IIG 

1.0, where thy mighty Murderess lies. 
The sleepless couch— the sunless room, 
And, quell'd the eagle eye and lion mien, 
The woe- worn shadow of the Titan Queen ! 

II. 

There, sorrow-stricken, to the ground, 

Alike by night and day. 
The heart's-blood from the inward wound 

Ebbs silently away. 
And oft she turns from face to face 

A sharp and eager gaze, 
As if the Memory sought to trace 
The sign of some lost dwelling-place 
Belov'd in happier Days ;— 

Ah, what the clue supplies 
In the cold vigil of a hireUng's eyes? 

Ah, sad in childless age to weep alone, 
And start and gaze, to find no sorrow save our own !- 
O Soul, thou speedest to thy rest away, 

But not upon the pinions of the Dove ; 
When Death draws nigli, how miserable they 
Who have outlived all Love! 
As on the solemn verge of Night 
Lingers a weary Moon, 
She wanes, the last of every glorious light 

That bath'd with splendour her majestic noon :— 
The stately stars that clustering o'er the isle 

Lull'd into glittering rest the subject sea;— 
Gone the great Masters of Itahan wile 
False to the world beside, but true to thee !— 
Burleicxh, the subtlest builder of thy fame,— 



^ 



117 

The glidincr erati of wnuling Walsinal.ame ;- 
Tlioy ^^\u, c-xaltcd yet before ti.eo bowed ;— 
And thar luore dazzling chivalry-the Band 
'i'liat nude thy Court a Faery [.and. 
In which thou wert enshrin'd to reign alone- 
Tho Gloriana of the Diamond Throne;— 
All gone,— and left thee sad amidst the cloud ! 

III. 

To their great Sires, to whom thy youth was known 

\N ho iro..i thy smile, as laurels from the Sun, 
Drank the immortal greenness of renown. 
Succeeds the cold lip-homage scantly won 
Prom the new race whose hearts already bear 
The Wise-mans offerings to the' unworthy Heir. 
There, specious Bacons * unimpassion'd brow, 
And crook-back Cecil's ever earthward eyes ' 
Watching the glass in which the sands run 'low ;— 

But deem not fondly there 
To weep the fate or pour the' averting prayer 
Have come those solemn spies ! 
Lo, at the Regal Gate 
The impatient Couriers wait; 

To speed from hour to hour the nice account 
That registers the grudged unpitied sighs 
Which yet must joy delay, before 
The Stuart's tottering step shall mo.uit 
The last great Tudor's throne, red with his Mother's crore • 

*See the serv.le and heart-sickening correspondence maintained hyFranci, 
Bacon and Robert Cecil (the sons of Elizabeth's most fauhful fr.ends; mth 
"le Scottish Court, durinp the Queen's last illness. 



118 

IV. 

O piteous mockery ot all pomp thou art. 
Poor Child of Clay, worn out with toil and years! 
As, layer by layer, the granite of the heart 
Dissolving, melteth to the weakest tears 
That evei' Village Maiden shed above 
The grave that robbd her quiet world of love. 
Ten days and nights upon that floor 

Those weary limbs have lain ; 
And every hour but added more 

Of heaviness to pain. 
As gazing into dismal air 
She sees the headless phantom there. 
The victim round whose image twined 
The last wild love of woman-kind ; 
That love which in its dire excess 
Will blast where it can fail to bless. 
And, hke the lightning, flash, and fade 
In orloom alongr the ruins it has made. 
Twere sad to see from those stern eyes 
The' unheeded anguish feebly flow ; 
And hear the broken word that dies 

In moanings faint and low; — 
But sadder still to mark the while. 
The vacant stare — the marble smile. 
And think, that goal of glory won. 

How slight a shade between 
The idiot moping in the sun 
And England's Giant Queen !* 

'*" It was after labouring for near I3 three weeks under a morbid melancholy., 
•which brought on a stu^ior not unmixed with some indications of a disordered 



I 



IIU 



Call back the gorgeous Past ! 

Lo. Kiiglaiul white-robed for a holyday ! 

While, choral to the clarion's kingly blast. 

Peals shout on shout along the Virgin's way. 
As thro' the swarming streets rolls on the long array. 

Mary is dead ! — Look from your fire-won homes, 

?]xulting Martyrs ! — on the mount shall rest 
Truth's ark at last ! the' avenging Lutheran comes 

And clasps the Book ye died for to her breast !* 
With her, the llower of all the Lantl, 

The high-born gallants ride. 
And, ever nearest of the band. 
With watchful eye and ready hand. 
Young Dudley's form of pride !+ 



fancy, that the^ Queen expired. — Aiktn's trantlation of n I^ttn lelttr 
{author unknown) lo Edmund Lambert. 

Robert Carey, who was admitted to an interview with Elizabeth in her last 
illness, after describing the passionate anguish of her sighs, observes, " that, 
in all his lifetime before, he never kntw her fetch a sigh but whtn the Queen 
of Scots was beheade'l." Yet this Robert Carey, the well-born mendicant 
of her bounty, was the first whose eagt^r haste and joyous countenance tuld 
James that the throne of the Tudors was at last vacant. 

• " When she (Elizabeth) was conducted thro' London amidst thejOyful 
acclamations ofhtr subjects, a boy, who personated Truth, was let down from 
one of the triumphal arches, and presented to her a copy of the Bible. She 
received the book with the most gracious deportment, placed it next tier 
bosom," &c. — Hume. 

t Robert Dudley, afterwards the Leicester of doubtful fami", attended 
Kliiabtth in her passage to the Tower. The streets, as she passed along, 
were spread with the finest gravel ; banners and pennons, hangings of siik, 
of velvet, of cloth of gold, were suspended from the balconies, musicians 
and singers were stationed amidst the populace ; as she ro<le along in her 
purple Tobis, preceded by her heralds. &c. 



1-20' 

Ah;, ev'n in that exulting houi-, 

Love half allures the soul from Power,- — 

And blushes, half suppress'd, betray 

The woman's hope and fear ; 
Like blooms which in the early May 
Bud forth beneath a timorous ray, 

And mark the mellowing year . • 
While steals the sw^eetest of all woi'ship, paid 
Less to the Monarch than the Maid, 
Melodious on the ear ! 

VL 

Call back the gorgeous Past ! 

I'he lists are set, the trumpets sound, 

Bright eyes — sweet judges — thron'd around ; 

And stately on the glittering ground 
The Old Chivalric Life ! 
'* Forward*." — The signal word is given — 

Beneath the shock the greensward shakes — 
The lusty cheer, the gleamhig spear — 

The snow-plume's falling flakes — 
The fiery joy of strife ! 
Tlius, when, from out a changeful heaveii 
O'er waves in eddying tumult driven 
A stormy smile is cast, 
Alike the gladsome anger takes 
'I'he sunshine and the blast ! — 
Who is the Victor of the Day? 
Thou of the delicate form, and golden hair. 
And Manhood glorious in its midst of May; — 

* The customary jilirase was '' Laissez alkr. ' 



121 

'I'liou wlio ui)on tliv <liiel(l of iiiofent, b«,'iirest 
The bold device, "The Loftiest is the Fairest !" 
As bending low thy stainless crest, 
'The Vestal throned by the West' 
Accords the old Provenqal crown 
Which blends her own with thy renown ; — 
Arcadian Sidney — Nursling of the Muse, 
Flower of Fair Chivalry, whose bloom was fed 

With daintiest Castaly's most silver dews, 
Alas ! how soon thy amaranth leaves were shed — 
Born, what, the 'Ansonian Minstrel dream'd, to be* 
Time's knightly Epic pass'd from Earth with thee ! 

VII. 

Call back the gorgeous Past ! 

W^herc, bright and broadening to the main. 

Rolls on the scornful River, — 
Stout hearts beat high on Tilbury's plain, — 
Our Marathon for ever ! 
iSo breeze above, but on the mast 
The pennon shook as with the blast. 
Forth from the cloud the day-god strode. 
O'er bristling helms the splendour glow'd, — 
Leapt the lo\id joy from Earth to Heaven, 
As, thro' the ranks asunder riven, 
The Warrior- Woman rode ! 



* What JifFercnce between theTaiicred of Tasso and the Sidney of Eng- 
land .^-except that the last was of bone and flesh ? " The Life of Sir Philij> 
Sidney," as Campbell finely exiiresses it, ■• was Poetry put in action." W'lti* 
hira died the Fruvenc^al and the Norman — the Ideal of the Middle Ages. 



122 

Hark, thrilling thro' the armed Line 
The martial accents ring, 
"I'hongh mine the Woman's form— yet mine, 
" The Heart of England's King!"* 

Woe to the Island and the Maid ! 

The Pope has preach'd the New Crusade,f 

His sons have caught the fiery zeal ; — 

The Monks are merry in Castile ; 
Bold Parma on the Main ; 

And thro' the deep exulting sweep 
The Thunder- Steeds of Spain.| — 
What meteor rides the sulphurous gale ? 
The Flames have caught the giant sail ! 
Fierce Drake is grappling prow to prow ; 
God and St. George for Victory now ! 
Death in the Battle and the Wind — 
Carnage before and Storm behind — 
Wild shrieks are heard above the hurtling roar 
By Orkneys' rugged strands, and Erin's ruthless shore. 

Joy to the Island and the Maid ! 

Pope Sixfus wept the Last Crusade ; 



* '•' I know I have but the body of a weak and feeble woman, but I have 
the heart of u king, and of a king of England too." — E/izabeth^s harangue 
at Tilbury Camp. 

She rode bareheaded thro' the ranks, a page bearing her helmet, 
mounted on a war-horse, clad in steel, — and wieldin(^ a general' s trunL-heon 
in her hand. Nothing in Napoleon's speeches excels the simple and 
grand eloquence of her imperishable address to her soldiery. 

f " SextuB Quintus, the present Pope, famous for his capacity and his 
tyranny, had published a crusade against England, and had granted plenary 
indulgences to every one engaged in the present invasion." — Hume. This Pope 
was nevertheless Elizabelli's admirer as well as foe, and said, not very cleri- 
cally, " If a son could be born from us two. he would be masterof the world.' 

:{: " Steeds of the Sea,'' — was the poetic synonym for ships with the old 
Runic bards. 



J 23 

His sons consumd bet'ore liis zeal, 

The Monks are woeful in Castile ; 

^ our Monument the Main, 
The glaive and gale Record your tale. 
Ve Thunder-Steeds of Spain ! 

vni. 

Turn from the gorgeous Past ; — 
Its lonely Ghost thou art ! 
A tree, that, in a world of bloom. 
Droops, spectral in its leafless gloom. 
Before the griding blast ; — 

But art thou fallen then so low 

Art thou so desolate i* wan Shadow, No ! 

Crouch'd, suppliant by the Grave's unclosing portal. 
Love which proclaims thee human, bids thee know 
A truth more lofty in thy lowliest hour 
Than shallowest Glory taught to deafened Power, 
"What's human is immortal ! " 
'Tis sympathy which makes sublime ! — 
Never so reverent in thy noon of Time 
As now— when o'er thee hangs the midnight pall- 
No comfort. Pomp ; and Wisdom no protection- 
Hope's 'cloud-capt towers and solemn temples' gone- 
Mid Memory's wrecks, eternal and alone,— 
Tv-pe of the Woman- Deity Affection; 
That only Eve which never knew a fall- 
Sad as the Dove, but, like the Dove, surviving all ! 



124 



ODE II. 
CROMAVELL'S DREAM. 



[The conception of this Ode originated in a popular tradition of Crorawell's 
earlier days. It is thus strikingl}' related by Mr. Forster, iu his recent and 
very valuable Life of Cromwell : — "' He had laid himself down, too fatigued 
to hope for sleep, when suddenly the curtains of his bed were slowly with- 
drawn by a gigantic figure, which bore the aspect of a woman, and which, 
gazing at him silently for a while, told him that he should, before his 
death, be the greatest man iu England. He remembered when he told 
the story, and the recollection marked the current of his thoughts, that 
thejigure had not made mention of the word King" Alteration has heen 
made in the scene of the vision, and the age of Cromwell.] 

The Moor spread wild and far 

In the sharp whiteness of a wintry shroud, 

Midnight yet moonless ; and the winds ice-bound. 
And a grey dusk — not darkness — reign'd around. 
Save where the paleness of a sudden star 

Peer'd o'er some haggard precipice of cloud. — 
Where on the wold, the triple pathway crost, 
A sturdy wanderer wearied, lone, and lost, 
Paus'd and gaz'd round ; a dwarf'd but aged yew 
O'er the wan rime its gnome -like shadow threw ; 
The spot invited, and by sleep opprest, 
Beneath the boughs he laid him down to rest. 

A man of stalwart limbs and hardy frame. 

Meet for the antique time when force was fame. 

Youthful in years — the features yet betray 

Thoughts rarely mellow'd till the locks are grey ; 

Hound the firm lips the lines of solemn wile 

Might warn the wise of danger in the smile ; 



1-25 

But the blunt aspect spoke more sternly still 

That craft of craft — thk J>tubborn Will : 

That which. — let what niav betide — 

Never halts nor swerves aside ; 

From afar its victim viewing. 

Slow of speed, but sure-pursuing; 

Thro' maze, up mount, still hounding on its way, 

Till it is grimly couch'd besitle the conquered prey ! 

11. 

The loftiest fate will longest lie 
In unrevealing sleep ; — 

And yet unknown the destined race, 

Nor yet his Soul had walk'd with Grace ; 

Still, on the seas of Time 

Drifted the ever-careless prime, — 

But many a blast that o'er the sky 

All idly seems to sweep, — 
Still while it speeds, may spread the seeds, 

The toils of autumn reap : — 
And we must blame the soil, and not the wind. 
If hurrying passion leave no golden grain behind. 

III. 
Seize — seize — seize I* 
Bind him strong in the chain, 
On his heart, on his brain. 

Clasp tile gyves of the iron Sleep. 
Seize — seize — seize — 
Ye fiends that dimly sweep 
Up from the clouily deep. 
Where Death holds ghastly watch beside his brother. 

* AaJi. >.a'i. Xa'i. > a'i. 'spizf. seizf. scize^. — .Ttchi//. Eiimen. 125. 



\2() 

Ve pale Inipalpables, that are 

Shadows of Truths afar. 

Prophets that men call Dreams — 
The phantom birth of that mysterious Mother, 

Who, by the Ebon Gate, 

Beyond the shore where Daylight streams, 

Sits, muttering spells for mortal state. 
Young with eternal years, — the Titan-Sibyl Fate ! 

Prophets tliat men call Dreams! — 
Seize — seize — seize — 

Bind him strong in the chain, 

On his heart, on his brain. 

Clasp the gyves of the iron Sleep ! 
Awakes or dreams he still? 

His eyes are open with a glassy stare, 
On the fix'd brow the large drops gather chill, 
And Horror like a Wind stirs thro' the lifted hair*. 

Before him stands the Thing of Dread — 
A Giant Shadow motionless and pale ! 
As those dim Lemur-Vapours f that exhale 
From the rank grasses rotting o'er the Dead, 
And startle midnight with the mocking shew 
Of the still, shrouded bones that sleep below — 

So the wan image which the Vision bore 

Was outlined from the air, no more 
Than served to make the loathing sense a bond 
Between the World of Life, and grieslier worlds beyond. 



is uKpai 

^ilfi vT^Xdi Kauris <po€ce.t. 

Soph. OEdip. Col. 146.5. 
t The Lemiires or Larvae, the evil spirits of the dead, as the Lares were 
the j;ood. — They haunted sepulchres — '' loath to leavf the bodies that they 
lovod." 



127 

V. 
• Behold!" the Shadow said, and lo, 

Where tho blank heath had spread, a stuilina scene; 

Soft woodlands sloping from a village green.* 

And. waving to blue Heaven, the happy cornfield, glow 

A modest roof, with ivy clustered o'er, 

And Childhood's busy mirth beside the door. 

But. yonder, sunset sleeping on the sod. 

Bow Labour's rustic sons in solemn prayer . 

-And, self-made Teacher of the truths of God. 
The Dreamer sees the Phantom-Cromwell there! 
" Art thou content, of these the greatest Thou;' 
Murmured the Fiend, " the Master and the Prie.st ?" 
A sullen anger knit the Dreamer's brow, 
And from his scornful lips the words came slow, 
• The greatest of the Hamlet, Demon, No!" 
Loud laugh'd the Fiend— then trembled thro' the sky. 
Wiiere haply angels watch'd. a warning sigh ;— 
And Darkness swept the scene, and golden Quiet ceas'd. 

VL 

•• Behold !" the Shadow said— a hell-born ray 

Shoots thro' the Night, up-leaps the unblessed Day. 

Spring from the earth the Dragon's armed seed, 

The .hastly squadron wheels, and neighs the spectre-sterd. 

reLrr 'r "' ^*" '"'' "'"•^ ^"™''^'' ^P^"^ *'^-^' 3--. afU.«auls 
led ..th regret though not unaffli.t.d .ith dark hypochondria nnd 

«.Ilen d.scont.nt. Here, as Mr. Forster ia.pres.ively oUerves, <• in .ho 

.nanU that rented from hi.. i„ the labourers that served under him. he 
M...ght to sow the seeds of his after troop of Ironsides ^// „,f,„„.,, 

doc,r,n., of ,,u later and r,.orr c.Ulra.ed year, uere ir^eH and ,e.,e,l .„ ,hr 
l'n;ef„m.„fS,.I.e. . . . Before going toth.irfieldwork in the morning, 
they (h.s servants) knelt ,!o«n with their mast.r in the touching eqnah.y of 
prayer ; .n the ev.uing ,h.y shared with him again tb.. ccmfort and exaltation 
of d.v.ne precrpts."- fors/er', Cro,„ur//. 



128 

Unnatural sounds the Mother-tongue 
As loud from host to host the English warcry rung ; 

Kindred with kindred blent in slaughter, lo 
The dark phantasma of the Prophet- Woe ! 

A gay and glittering band ! 
Apollo's lovelocks in the crest of Mars — 
Lisfht-hearted Valour, laucrhingr scorn to scars — 

A gay and glittering band. 
Unwitting of the scythe — the Lilies of the Land ! 

Pale in the midst, that stately squadron boast 
A princely form, a mournful brow ; 

And still, where plumes are proudest, seen, 

With sparkling eye and dauntless mien. 
The young Achilles * of the host. 

On rolls the surging war — and now 
Alonor the closinjj columns ring — 

o o o 

"Rupert" and "Charles" — ''The Lady of the Crownf," 
** Down with the Roundhead Rebels, down !' 
" St. George and England's king." 

A stalwart and a sturdy band, — 
Whose souls of sullen zeal 

Arc made by the Immortal Hand, 

Invulnerable steel ! 
A kneeling host, — a pause of prayer, 
A single voice thrills through the air 
" They come. Up Ironsides ! 
" For Truth and Peace unsparing smite ! 
" Behold the accurs'd Amalekite !" 

* Prim-e Ru^'crt. 
t Ileniietttt Maria was the popular watchword of the Cavaliers. 



12.> 



The Dreamer's heart boat high aiul Uu\, 
For, cahiily through the carnage-cloud. 
The Scourge and Servant of the Lord. 
This hand the Bibh^— that the Sword— 
The Phantotn-C'roniwell rides! 

A hi rid darkness swallows the array. 
One moment lost— the darkness rolls away. 
And, o'er the slaughter done, 
Smiles, with his eyes of love, the settincr Sun 
Death makes our Foe our Brother ; 
And, meekly, side by side, 

Sleep scowling Hate, and sternly smiling Pride, 
On the kind breast of Earth, the quiet Mother ! 
Lo. where the Victor sweeps alono, 
The Gideon of the gorv throno. 

Beneath his hoofs the harmless dead 

The sunlight glory on his helmed head- 
Before him steel-clad Victory bending, 

Around, from earth to heaven ascending 

'J'he fiery incense of triumphant song. 

So, as some orb above a mighty stream 
Sway'd by its law— and sparkling in its beam,— 
A Power apart from that tempestuous tide, 
Calm and alofr behold the Phantom-Conqueror ride ! 
" Art thou content — of these the greatest Thou. 
"Hero and Patriot ?"' murmured then the Fiend. 
The unsleeping Dreamer answered, " Tempter, nay, 

" My soul stands breathless on the mountain's brow 
And looks bei/07id /" Again swift darkness screen'd 

The solemn Chieftain and the fierce array, 
And armed Glory pass'd. like happier Peace, away. 

K 



130 

VII. 

He looked again, and saw 
A chamber with funereal sables huna 

Wherein there lay a ghastly headless thing 
That once had been a king — 
And by the corpse a living man, whose doom, 
Had both been left to Nature's quiet Law, 
Were riper for the Garner-House of Gloom.* 
Rudely beside the gory clay were flung 

A broken sceptre and an antique crown. 
So, after some imperial Tragedy 

August alike with sorrow and renown, 
We smile to see the gauds that mov'd our awe, 

Purple and orb ; in dusty lumber lie, — 
Alas, what thousands, on the stage of Time, 
Envied the baubles, and revered the Mime ! 

Placed by the trunk — with long and whitening hair 

By dark-red gouts besprent, the severed head 

Up to the Gazer's musing eyes, the while, 

Look'd with its livid brow and stony smile. 
On that sad scene, his gaze the Dreamer fed, 
Familiar both the Living and the Dead ; 
Terror, and hate, and strife concluded there. 

Calm in his six-feet realm f the monarch lay ; 

And bv the warning victim's mangled clay 

* The render will recall the well known story of Cromwell opening the 
coffin of Charles with the hilt of a private soldier's sword, and, after gazing on 
the body some time, observing calmly, that it seemed made for long life. — 
" Had Nature been his Executioner, 
He would have outlived Me !" — Cromwell, a MS. tragedy, 
f A whole epic was in the stern epigram of the Saxon when asked by the 
rival to his throne — '• What share of territory wilt thou give me ?" — " Six feet 
of land for a grave :" 



131 

The Phanton.-Oomwell smird,-nnd bending down 
With shadowy fingers toyd about the shadowv crown. 

•• Art thou content, at last, a Greater thou 

" Than one to whom the loftiest bent the knee. 

" Brand to the False-but Bann.r to the Freel 

" Avenger and Deliverer !'" 

" Fiend," replied 
The Dreamer, "who shall palter with the tide ?— 
•' Deliverer ! Pilots who the vessel save 
'• Leave not the helm while winds are on the wave. 
•' The Future is the Haven of thf Xow !" 
• True," quoth the Fiend-Again the darkness spread. 
And Night gave back to Air the Doomsman and the 
Dead! 

VIIl. 

He lookd again : and now 

A lofty Senate stern with many a Form. 

Not unfamiliar to the former strife; 

An anxious passion knit each gathered brow; 

O'er all. that hush deep not serene, in life. 

As in the air, prophetic of wild storm. 

Uprose a stately shape* with dark-bright eye 

And worn cheek lighted with a feverish glow :— 

It spoke— and at the aspect and the sound 

The Dreamer breath'd a fierce and restless sigh; 

An instinct bade him hate and fear 

That unknown shape— as if a foe were near— 

• When Cromwell came down (leaving his musqueteers without the door ) 
" d«solve the I^ng Parliament, Vane wa« in the act of urging through thi 
^ tage the B.l. that would have .aved ,he republic, 'see Folte.. 
•pinted account of thi.s scene. Life of \ ane, 152. 



K 2 



132 

For, mighty in that mien of thoughtful youth. 
Spoke Fraud's most deadly foe-a soul on fire with 
Truth ;— 
A soul without one stain 
Save England's hallowing tears ;-the sad and starry Vane ! 
There enters on that conclave high 
A solitary Man ; 
And rustling thro' the conclave high 

A troubled murmur ran ; 
A moment more — loud riot all — 
With pike and morion gleam the startled hall : 
And there, where, since the primal date 

Of Freedom's glorious morn, 
The Eternal People solemn sate 
The People's Champion spat his ribald scorn ! 
Dark moral to all ages '.—Blent in one 
The broken fasces and the shattered throne ; 
The deed that damns immortally is done ; 
And Force, the Cain of ^iations-^eigns alone ! 
The veil is rent— the crafty soul hes bare ! 
" Behold," the Demon cried, " the Future Cromwell, there ! 
" Art thou content, on Earth the Greatest thou, 
'« Apostate and Usurper?"— From his rest 
The Dreamer started with a heaving breast. 
The better angels of the human heart 
Not dumb to his,— The Hell-Born laugh'd aloud 
And o'er the Evil Vision rush'd the Cloud 1 



ODE III 



THr<: DEATH OF NELSON 



Thk wind comes gently from the west ,* 

The smile is on the face of day ; 
And gaily o'er the ocean's breast. 

The breezes are at play ; 
Along the deep-upon the foe. 

The sails of England bear ; 
Above, the busy murmurs glow, f 
Hush'd in the cabin, kneels below. 

A lonely man in prayer. 
He pray'd as ought to pray the brav 

Before the seraph-guarded throne; 
He pray'd to conquer and to save.— 
The morn of that immortal strife, 
More anxious for a foeman's life.| 
Than hopeful for his own. 

• The wind was now from the west, li.-ht bret-zcs kr u 
t " Tiie bu>y murmur glows."— Grrry 



t34 
II. 

He rose ; — Before hirn glow'd. 
In limned loveliness, that hauntinor face,* 
Where, through the roseate bloom of its abode 
Look"d out the starry soul '.—Celestial, thus, 
^rhro' sunset clouds, Idalian Hesperus, 
Breaks on the lover, loitering by the sea, 
That laves the passionate shores of soft Parthenope.f 

The youngest-born of the Olympian race. 
The Hebe of the Martyr- Demigod, 

Never^with looks of ntore voluptuous light 
The golden Ether trod ; 

Slow-st.ea;iiig where at length trom earth reposed. 
Her hero-bridegroom, as more blandly bright, 
Grew with her blush, the glory-purpled skies. 
Grim by the throne of ZeusJ the Eagle closed 
At her melodious step his charmed eyes, 
And worn Alcides, of his woes beguil'd, 
Turn'd from the whispering Mars, and Love ambrosial 
smil'd. 

III. 

What thoughts were his, the doomed and lonely one, 

FeedincT the last look on that fatal face ? 
Did conscience darken o'er the evil done, 

Or deem that love so deep could be disgrace ? 

* A portrait of Lady Hamilton huug in his cabin. The undis^-uised and 
romantic passion with which he regarded it, amounted almost to superstition. 

— Souifiey's kelson. 

t Parthenope, the poetical name of Naples. It was in that city that Nelson 

first saw Lady Hamilton. 

• Find. Pyth. 1. I need scarcely perhaps inform even the general reader, 
thit Zeus, in an application of Greek mythology, is a more appropriate name 
for the Thumiei-Goil than that of Jupiter. 



135 

Did that sole deed of vengeance wild and weak, 

Which bow'd the Warrior to the Woman's slave, 
Ghastly and mournful o'er his memory break ?— 
Mark'd he the corpse, rejectetl by tlie wave, 
Floating once more upon the accusing sea ;— 
The livid aspect and the snow-white hair;— 
The fix'd eyes fearful with a stony «'larc — 

Life-like in death, the wrong'd Caraccioli >* 
^'aw he the dark-u ing'd Malice cower above 
The doubtful bowers of his Armida-love? 
Heard he the sighs wliich gentler spirits breathe 
O'er the one rose-leaf in the laurel-wreath ? 
For Envy harmless o'er the laurel blows. 
But when did worm forego, or canker sp.re the rose ? 
Away ; the centered soul, in horns like ihese. 
Daunts not itself with phantom images; 
One voice alone is hoard within the heart, 

" \\e loved, and we must part :" 
^ et while the voice was heard ; and heavily 
Round that low cell boom'd the voice-echoina sea 

As clouds obscure the unswerving planet,— fast 
Across the luminous spirit rush'd the Past. 

seve-^JT ^'T""" ''""""'• "" '**^' '"'-''' of the„,arine;-ne,.r.y 
sev u,y jears of age ; -served under the Neapolitan ..r Parthenop.an re- 
ub c ag...n.t h.s late Sovereign. When .he recovery of Naples wa« evi- 
Jen ly ...ar. he applud to Card.nal Ruffo and the Ih.ke of Calvirrano for 
protecUon -afterwards endeavoured to secret him. lf,-was discovered in the 
«1.8gu.se of a peasant, and carried on board Lord Nelson'n ship. He was 
tne..-found guiity.-senteoced to death by hanging, the evening of his ap- 
!^reheas.on,-the President (Count Thurn) of the court-martial was his per- 
->nal enemy. . . .He entreated that he might be shot-in vain. It was ob- 

r'T'" '';; '^"'''^'' '"" "'"" '^'^ ""°'"^'" abridged, that Nelson 
Has influenced by an infatuated attachment to Lady Ham.lton. then on boani, 
.hose hatred against those whom she regarded the enemies of the Neapol.tan 



136 



IV. 



The Boy— once more— he was the lonely boy.* 
Dreaming oracular sovmds and weird, to hear 

Where the Brook murmur'd in a restless joy — 

Or asking anxious Age with wonder—" What is Fear?" 

Away, upon the Warrior Seas, 

Amidst the icebergs of the death-like Main 
Where daylight bleaches in the dreary air ; -t 

The broken frame, the fell disease 

And the dull anguish of the bed of pain ;— 

The Hour when Youth first wrestles with Despair^ 
When the far Alps of Fame, n^ore giant seem 

Seen thro' the morning mists tliat struggle with the beam ;— 

Court, made he. forget what was .lue to the character of her sex as well as .f 
her country. The body was carried out to a considerable distance and sunk m 
tbe bay, with three .louble-headed shot, weighinR .'50 pounds, tied to its legs. 
Between two and three weeks afterwards, when the King was on board the 
Foudroyant,a Neapolitan fisherman came to the ship, and solemnly declare.l 
that Caraociolihad risen from tht bottom of the sea, and was coming as fast 
as he could to Naples, swimming half out of the water. The day being fair, 
Nelson, to please the King, stood out to sea; but the ship had not i^roceeded 
far, before a body was distinctly seen upright in the wat> r, and approaching 
the'm. Jt was soon recognized to be, indeed, the corpse of Caracoioli. which 
lia.i risen and floated, while the great weights attached lo the legs kept the 
body in a position like that of a living man.— Souihey's Ne.'son. 

* Wh. n a mere child he »tray'<l a l-ird's nestin- from his grandmother's 
l,i,„ge— the dinner-hour elapsed - he was absent and could not be found— the 
alarm of the family was very great, &c. At len„rth. after search had been 
made for him in various direct ions, he was discovered alone sitting composedly 
l.y thp side of a brook which he could not get over. " I wonder, child," said the 
old lad> , when she saw him, - that hunger and fear did not drive you home.' 
•' Fear,'' replied the future hero. •• I never saw Fear, what is \i?"—Jbid. 

+ The voyage of discovery towards the North Pole, in which Nelson 
Rerved. "The sky was generally loaded with hard white clouds, from which 
It was never entirely free, even in the clearest weather."— /6irf. 

I "The disease baffitd all power ,f m- dicine ;. he was reduced almost to a 



137 

Till sudden o'er the spirit.uil eye there broke 
The Radiant Orb of the to-c-ome Renown, 
And from the nightmare-sleep, prophetic woke 

Genius-which is but Hope to Action grown.- 
And hail'd in Titan crags the footstool to its throne ! 
Yet ever in that high career 

What stinging Doubts pursued ! 
Hiss'd Hydra Envies in his ear 
'And, round the steps of bleeding Toil. 
The creeping things that clog the soil, 
And, while they cumber, wound, in thorny fetters coil. 

O Fountain heard afar— but rarely view'd. 
As the Hart panteth for the water-brook, 
So, in the burning waste doth Glory look 

For tiiy life-giving well, melodious Gratitude ! 

V. 

Fast flashing, like the phosphor gleam 

Lpon the southern seas; 
Shine, rippling o'er his waking dream. 

The wavelike memories. 
They rushd— the triumphs of that crowded life— 
The hot Delight of Strife. 

»!*eltton ; the u,e of h.s li.nb, was for some time entirely lost, &c • • • 
Long afterwanh, when tl.e name of Ndson .as known as widely as that of 
t.nglaad .tself, he spoke of the feelu.j,.s which he at th.s time endured '■ I fdt 
, .^pressed,' ,a.d he, •' with a feelmg that I should never r.se i„ my profession. 
My m.nd was .tampered with a view of .he difficul.i.-s I had to surmount. 1 
-uld discover no me.ns of reach.ng the object of my ambition. After a 
np and gloomy rev.rie.in which I alu.ost wi.hed ,o throw n.yself overboard. 
^ .u.ld.„ glow of patriotism was kindled wnh.n me. &c.-' From tha. t.me 
h- onen sa,.l. a rad,an, ..« ,,, „„^,„,,^^ ,„ ^.^ ^,.^^.^ ^^.^^^ 

I'm ouwaid to nnow n. ■— 7^,/. *" 



138 

The Nile's avenging day, 
Aboukir's reddening Bay, 

The thunder-sceptre ravish'd from the Gaul, — 
I'hey rush'd — the visions and the victories ; 
The swarming streets — the festive hall ; 
A nation's choral and sublime acclaim ; 

And— as the air with one orb's arrowy light. 
Earth radiant with one name ! 

From these he turn'd to holier thoughts, away. 
Sad with the wisdom of the Preacher's song ; 
For he had felt how loud applauses die, 
As custom hacknies to the vulgar eye 
The Fame,— not so the Wrong ! 
For Slander is the echo of Repute, 

And strikes from hill to hill when Glory's tromp is mute. 
To the calm spot in this loud world, he turn'd 

Where laugh'd the eyes too young his loss to weep ; 
Oh, how, once more, the boding Father yearn'd 
To watch one fair face in the happy sleep,— 
As, when (that parting hour) in pious care 
By his child's couch he kneh*— she did not hear his prayer 



VI. 

The Phantom shapes are flown ! 

As ghosts before the day, 
The \insubstantial memories glide away, 

Into their closing grave. 

* Horatia Nelson Thompson, believed to be his daughter, and so indeed 
he called her the last time that he pronounced her name. The last minutes 
which Nelson passed at Merton were employed in praying over this child as 
*\\c lay sleeping.— 5iOM'Aey'« Nelson. 



139 

The Hour has claimed its own ! 

Aloft, the hurrying tread, the gathering hum ; 

Around, the brightening sky, the fresh'ninff water— 
More near and near the fated squadrons come- 
Fast o'er the dread suspense rushes the storm of slaughter- 
And the heart bounds forth from its gloom. 
Over the tides of its solemn doom. 
As the hero's bark, when the rousino- crale 
Shakes the sullen sleep from its gladdening sail. 
Bounds over the roaring wave ! 

VII. 

Hurrah! hurrah! from wave to sky. 
Arose the Sea-Queen's signal-cry ; 
From heart to heart electric ran 

Those words of simple beauty, — 
England KXPtxTs that every man 

This day shall do his duty ! 

VIII. 
Full on the foe the sunbeams shine, 
And our seamen gaze on the glilterino- line. 
Thirty and three, their numbers be. 
Like giants they stride thro' the groaning sea. 
Our seamen gazed with a glad delight- 
Ne'er had they seen such a goodly sight ; 
Then they glanc'd at each other, and " Oh," they said. 
• How well they will look at our own ' Spithead.' '* 

• The 8un sho..e on the sails of the enemy, au-l their well-formed line, with 

their numerous three-deckers, made an appearance which any other assailants 

-'uld have thouj^ht formidable. But the British sailors only admired the 

^auty and the splendour of the spectacle; and, in f.ill con6dence uf winning 

:iat they saw. remarke.l to each other. •• What h fine sight yonder ^hip» 

iild make at Spithead !'' Ibid. 



140 

IX. 

At the head of the hue goes the " Victory"* 

With Nelson on the deck ; 
And on his breast the orders shinef 

Like the stars on a shattered wreck. 
For ruthless had the lightning been 

That flash'd from the stormy fame ; 
And only spar'd the laurels, green | 
O'er the rents of the ruin'd frame. 
" Look out, look out," cried Nelson, " see 

(For so the fight began) 
" How ' the Sovereign'§ steers thro' the Frenchman's line 

" Astern of the Santa Ann." 
'• Look out, look out," cried Collingwood, 
As he burst thro' the Frenchman's line, 
" If Nelson cou'd, in our place have stood, 
" And have been but here, the first to steer 
" Thro' the midst of the Frenchman's line."|| 
Now from the fleet of the foemen past 

Ahead of " the Victory," 
A four-deck'd ship with a flagless mast — 

An Anak of the sea — 
His gaze on the ship. Lord Nelson cast, 
" Oho, my old friend," quoth he, 

* " The Vktorj," Nelson's ship. 

\ lie wore that day, as usual, his admirars frock coat, bearing on the left 
breast four stars of ihe difierent orders with which he was invested. — Southey''s 

Nelson. 

X I need scarcely observe that according to the poetical superstition of the 
ancients the lightning never scathed the laurel. 

§ The Royal Sovereign, commanded by CoUingwood. 

II "What would Nelson give to be here !" said CJoUingwood, delighted at 
being first in the heat of the ^x^. — Southey's Nelson. 



il 



141 



•' Since again we have met, we must all be glad 
To pay our respects to the Trinidad !"* 
Full on the bow, of the giant foe, 
Our gallant " Victory" runs ; 
Thro' the dark'ning smoke, the thunder broke 

O'er her deck from a hundred cruns :— 
But we answered not, by a single shot, 
Though our booms and the maintop fell. 
Until we were suited with two to one, 
For we liked the odds we had always won.— 
Here, to the left, at length we had 
The saint of the ocean — Trinidad ; 
There, to the right, loom'd the bulky mi^ht 

Of the grim Redoutable. 
Then out in her pride, and from either side 
Spoke the wrath of the " Victory." 
Cries Hardy, " My Lord, we must run on board 
"One of their braggarts to break the line, 
" Which shall it be ?• — Saith our King of the Sea, 
(And we heard through the roar his careless voice,) 
" It matters not much, you may take your choice."f 
So the helm to port ;— O'er the bounding brine 

^^ith a shout we burst, where the shot came worst 
From the grim Redoutable. 
As swarms of bees on the summer trees. 
Her tops were filled with the Tyrolese.J 
And their bullets came with a dastard aim 

• The Santi»8ima Trinidad, Ndsou's old acquaintance a« he used to call 
her, was distinguishable only by her four decks. 

t '• Take your choice, Hardy, ,t does not signify much." -Sou I A^u: 

eh on. ' 



NeU 



I "Her tops, like those uf all the enemy's sh.,.s, were filled wnh rifle- 
men (the Tyrolese)."— Soi/M<y', NtUon. 



142 

Round the mark which the Brave would have deemed divine ;— 
Where, o'er tlie gentlest heart that e'er 
Bade carnage cease or conquest spare, 
The stars of glory shine. 
On the other side of the foeman prest 

Our dauntless Temeraire ; 
Boarded in turn— for the ships were four,— 
And the huge guns plied with a slackened roar, 
As, breast to breast, the vessels rest, — 
We fought like landsmen there ! 
The Redout able no more replied 
To our guns—" She has struck," our Nelson cried, 
" No pennon waves on her sullen mast, 
" She has struck and the time to destroy is past ;* 
. " I have prayed our Lord with a Christian's prayer, 
" Thoucrh our arms may win, that our hearts may spare." 
Scarce the words were spoke, thiough the lurid smoke, 

O God, we saw him fall ; 
From the ship he had bid our guns forbear, 
Came the murderous rifle-ball. 

XII. 

As down Sicilian Etna's burning side, 
The waning terrors of the liquid hell 

Fainter and dimher grow ! 
So the spent rage of Battle grimly died 

O'er the far-booming ocean's labouring swell- 
But, ever and anon, the sudden flame 
Shot from some flying sail, 

* " He twice gave orders to cease firing upon the Redoutable, supposing 
that she had struck, because her great guns were silent. From this ship, 
which he had thus twice spared, he received his death. A ball, &c."— 
Sou they t Nelson. 



143 



And the last vengeance of the vanquislul can.o 
In loud despair upon the cloudy gale. 

Tliey fly-still dealing deathl-Uiey fly-the Foe! 

So lions fn.n. the circling spears retire. 

With horrent jaus that menace as they go ; 
So hurrying comets thai depart in ire. 
Shake from their demon-urns theswart malignant fire! 



Xlll. 



But where was he— the noble-t son 

Of the Triumphant Isle,— 
Where— England's loftiest victory won- 

Her Hero of the Nile ? 

Lo. on his couch, the Victor- Victim lying. 

Save to the few-the fatal stroke unknown- 
Above-his gladsome crew-his pennon flyin<. 
And he, with that dark Angel-Death, alone ! 
But ever as the loud hurra,* 
Tim'd with triumphant peal his latest day. 

By each new conquest o'er the scattering Foe 
Flash'd on the ashen cheek the flickering glow. ' 
And, like a star that pales beneath the morn. 

When gradual broadening o'er tlie solenm sky 
So life grew dark as glory drew more nigh ! 
Vain on that gentle heart the levin came ; 
Nor bays nor minghng myrtle there uptorn ; 
And thoughts, like echoes in a shrine, repeat 

• As often as a .hi,, struck, the crew of the Victory hurra'.I . . ♦ 
hurra a v siblp Pvnr^^.; r • , "-lur) nurra d, and at every 



144 

Familiar memories indistinctly sweet, 

That blend his England's with his Emmas name.* 

XIV. 

The last guns heard that famous day 

Along the Deep were dying ; 
No flag, save ours, within the bay 

On a single mast was flying : — 
When the Captain came where Nelson lay. 

Tlie chaplain by his side ; 
His hand he press'd — his cheek he kissM, 

<' Look up," the Captain cried ; — 
" Twenty have struck, and the rest have fled, 

" We have won the victory 1' 
- Thank God— thank God," then feebly said 

The Sydney of the Sea — \ 
" My duty is done,"-|— So the race was run. 
And thus our Nelson died. 

* " Next to his country she occupied his thoughts^'-Southey's Nelson. 

t Nelson resembled Sydney in h.s fate but yet more in his humanity. 
Each insisted, at the last, that the surgeon should leave him and attend to 
those to whom he might be useful. 

J "Thank God, I have done my duty I" These words he repeatedly 
pronounced, and they were the last words which he uttered. - Sou t hey . 
Neiton. 



THE END. 



LoNnoN : Printed by VV. Clowes and Sons, Stamford-street. 



THE SEA-CAPTAIN; 



THE BlirniRlGHT: 



9 Brama 



IN FIVE ACTS. 



JY THE AUTHOR OF " THE LADY OF LYONS," " RICHF.LIF.U," &C. 



' The Sod uf Fortune, she has sent him furih 
To thrive by the red sweat of his own merits." 

MlDDLKTON. 

' Then triumph, Leon, richer in thy love 
Tlian all the hopes of treasure." 

Chapmak. 



LONDON : 
SAUNDERS AND OTLEY, CONDUIT STREET. 

1839. 



London : 
Printetl by William Clowes and Sons, 
Stamford Street. 



TO THE 

EARL OF DURHAM 

THE AUTHOR DEDICATES 

THIS DRAMA; 

A SLIGHT TRIBUTE OF ADMIRATION FOR 

A CLASSICAL AND ACCOMPLISHED JUDGE 

IN ARTS AND LETTERS ; 

AND A SINCERE MEMORIAL 

OF PERSONAL RKSPECT AND REGARD. 

October 23, 1839. 



VI 1 



P R E F A C E. 



As in the " Lady of Lyons" an attempt was made to 
illustrate the Republican soldier of the Italian cam- 
paign, a character peculiarly French — so in this play 
the Author has sought to delineate a character not 
less especially English, viz., the early, and, if I may 
so speak, the aboriginal, Sea-Captain, with the same 
gay and prodigal contempt of the commonplace ob- 
jects which landsmen covet and scheme for, that is 
still popularly attributed to his brethren, but Avitli 
something also of the adventurous romance and 
poetic fancy with which the lingering chivalry of the 
Old World, and the first glimpses of the New, in- 
spired the wild and gallant contemporaries of ^^''alter 
Raleigh. The varieties of our peculiar civilisation can 
exhibit no individuality so strikingly and imperishably 
national as that which has been formed by the mari- 
time spirit, and devoted to the maritime service, of 
our people. Perhaps, too, in no aspect is the English 
character so attractive and so noble as in the great 
exemplars and maintainers of our naval glory, 
Collingwood and Nelson were not more in deed 
than in thought the representatives and mirrors of 



viii PREFACE. 

a heroism loftier tliaii that Avhich is to be found in 
the portraits that, with harder outlines and half-hc- 
titious colours, adorn the gallery of Plutarch. If the 
character I attempt to sketch is necessarily idealized by 
the poetry that belongs to the Drama, I trust that it is 
not the less essentially true to Nature ; and' that the 
Sea- Captain of Elizabeth's day will not be deemed an 
unworthy likeness of the forerunners and heralds of the 
glorious race that commenced with Blake, and found 
their most illustrious archetype in the gentle and 
daring heart — in the patriotism, disinterested and 
sublime — in the valour that was ever merciful — in the 
ambition that was never base — in all the memories of 
devoted life and heroic death, which, age after age, 
shall render not less holy than unfading the laurel and 
the cypress upon the tomb of Nelson. 

October 2'?,rd, 1839. 



1 



PERSONS OF THE DRAMA, 

.iS PERFORMED AT THE THEATRE ROYAL. HAYMARKET, OCTOBER i\s'. 18.«. 



Mf.n. 

1j<jkd Ashdale, son to Lady Arundel . . Mr. J. Webster. 

Sir Maurice Beevor, a reputed Miser, arul 
thouijh hut distantly related to Lady Arun- 
del j the Heir-at-Law to the Titles and Es- 
tates, failing the children of the Countess Mr. Strickland. 

'SoRMA^s, the Captain of a Ship of War . Mr. Macreadt. 

Falkner, his friend and Lieutenant . . Mr. Howe. 

Onslow, a Village Priest .... Mr. Phelps. 

Gacssen, a Pirate ..... Mr. O. Smith. 

Luke, a Pirate ..... Mr. Gallott. 

Servants, Sailors, Pirates, ^-c. 

Women. 
Lady Arundel, a Countess in her ov:n right . Mrs. Warner. 

Violet, her Ward, and cousin tu Lord Ash- 
dale by his father'' s side . . . Miss H. Falcit. 

Mistress Prudence .... Mrs. Clihokd. 

Scene, — The North of Devon. 

Costume, — Towards the end of Elizabeth's rcn/n. 

Time occupied by the action, one day. 



THE SEA-CAPTAIN; 



OR, 



THE BIRTHRIGHT 



ACT I. 
SCENE I. 



'Ihe e.iterior of a small inn by the sea-coast ; the 
Castle of Arundel at a distance ; a boat drawn on 
the beach ; a ship at anchor. The door of the inn 
is open, and discovers Falkner and Sailors carous- 
ing within. Before a table in front of the stage— 
Giles Gaussen A-eato/. Time, forenoon. 

LANDLORD {serving Gaussen, tcith a flask, S^-c.) 

If this be not the best Canaries on the coast, I -ive 
thee leave to drown me in my own butt. But it is dull 
work drmking alone, master;— wilt join the jolly 
fellows within ? 

gaussen. 

No. 

LANDLORD. 

A bluff customer. If his reckonings be as short as 



B 



2 THE SEA-CAPTAIN ; [act i. 

his answers, he is not likely to die in debt to his land- 
lord. . 

[^Exit Landlord within the inn. 

GAUSSEN. 

Luke should be returned ere this; Sir Maurice 
would be eager eno' to see his. old friend if he knew 
what news in the way of shot I carry in my locker. 
Humph! Sir Walter Raleigh is a great man— and 
introduced tobacco ! (smokes.) 

SAILORS (within). 

Ha, ha ! 

GAUSSEN. 

To . the foul fiend with those drunken sailors ! Had 
I known what kind of guests my fat landlord har- 
boured I should hardly have put into this port : I hate 
honest men : what right have men to be honest and 
spoil other men's trade ? 

Enter Ltike. 

Ha, Luke ! what says the old knight ? 

LUKE. 

Mighty little, but he is close at my heels. He car- 
ries back his own answer, to save porterage, I suppose. 
Thou mightst well call him a miser— not a tester for 
my trouble. His very face is like a board to warn 
men off the premises of his breeches' pockets. 

GAUSSEN. 

Where are our crew ? 

LUKE. 

Rambling through the town yonder, and picking up 



SCENE I] OR, THE BIRTHRIGHT. 3 

Stray news of what ships sail and what tlieir cargo. 
They are keen scouts. 

GAUSSEN. 

Go, select tAvelve of the stoutest ; stow them away in 
the sea-cave that I told thee of, l)elow the castle yon- 
der. I may find work for them ere nightfall.— Hark 
ye, Luke. If thou hadst done a man such wrong that 
thy life lay at his mercy, what wouldst thou ? 

LUKE. 

'I ake the first dark night for a spring from the bush, 
and keep my knife ground. 

GAUSSEN. 

I like thy advice. — Hence ! 

\^Edit Luke. 
Enter Sir Maurice. 

SIR MAURICE. 

What, Giles Gaussen— bully Gaussen, my heart of 
oak; iiow fares it? Mliy, it is ten years since we 
met. I thouglit thou wert in anotlier land.— (^a^/^>) 
I wish thou wert in another world. You are a little 
altered— warlike wounds, eh? All for the better— 
1 more grim, terrible, manly, and seamanhke. 

GAUSSEN. 

I must thank the boy whom I took out to please 
thee for this gash across the brow. 

SIR MAURICE. 

Ugh ! it is by no means a handsome keepsake, bully 
Gaussen. \Miat, then ? you are quits witli him. You 



B -2 



4 THE SEA-CAPTAIN ; [act i. 

gave him a very large winding-sheet, — one that will not 
wear out this many a day, eh ? 

GAUSSEN. 

No ; he has escaped — he lives ! I saw him yester- 
day — a day's journey hence. It is this which brings me 
hither. I have tracked news of him. He bears another 
name — Norman ! He has a goodly ship of his own. 
Look yonder {pointing to the ship). Does- this news 
open your purse-strings, Sir IMaurice ? 

SIR MAURICE. 

Thou traitor ! Hadst thou not five hundred broad 
pieces — bright, new, gold broad pieces? I recollect 
the face of every one of them as if it were my own 
child's ; — -and all, all that thou mightst never say to 
me " He lives." 

GAUSSEN. 

Hist ! 

Enter Falkner and Sailors from the inn. 

FALKNER. 

Yes, steady, lads, steady. The Captain will be here 
anon — it is the hour he fixed. Avast there, messmate ! 
Thou seem'st one of our cloth. Dost want a berth 
in the Royal Eliza, under the bold Captain Norman ? 

GAUSSEN (aside to Sir Maurice). 
Norman — you hear ? 

SIR MAURICE. 

You serve under Captain Norman, worthy sir ? — Do 
you expect him soon this way, worthy sir ? 



»FNF. i] OR, THE inRTHRIGHT. 



FALKNER. 



This instant, worthy sir ! I luii liis lieutenant, 
worthy sir. Faith, you shall drink his health. 

SIR MAURICE. 

Zounds, sir ! what is his health to me ? It is as 
much as a man of my aire can do to drink his own 
health. This way, Gaussen ; (juick — tell me more — 
tell me more. Good day to you, master lieutenant. 

[_E<.veunt Sir M. and Gaussen. 

FALKNER. 

Good day to you both — and an ill \vind go with you ! 
By the Lord, messmates, a man who refuses to drink, 
without a satisfactory explanation, is to my mind a 
very suspicious character. 

SAILOR. 
Hurrah for the Captain ! hurrah ! 

Enter Norman. 

NORMAN. 

W'tiU. met, lads ! beshrew me but the sound of your 
jolly welcome is the merriest nmsic IVe heard since 
we parted. Have ye spent all your doubloons? 

FIRST SAILOR. 

Pretty nearly, Captain. 

NORMAN. 

That's right — we shall be all the lighter in sailing ! 
Away to the town — and get rid of these pieces for me. 
r' Oft"; but be back an hour before sunset. 

\^Ej:eunt Sailors. 



6 THE SEA-CAPTAIN ; [act i. 

What should I do with all this prize-money 
If it were not for those brave fellows ? — faith, 
They take a Avorld of trouble off one's hands ! 
How fares it, Falkner ? — thou hast seen thy home ? — 
All well ?— 

FALKNER. 

All well ! my poor old father, bless him, 
Had known reverse — he tills another's land. 
And crops had fail'd. Oh, man, I was so happy 
To pour my Indian gold into his lap. 
And cry " Your sailor son has come to drive 
Want from his father's door !" 

NORMAN. 

That hour were worth 
A life of toil ! — well, and thy mother ? — I 
Hav^e never known one — but I love to see 
A man's eyes moisten and his colour change 
A\''hen on his hps lingers the sweet name " mother !" 
Thy mother bless'd thee ! 

falkner. 
Scarce with words; — but tears 
And lifted hands, and lips that smiled dear thanks 
To the protecting Heaven — theae bless'd me ! 

NORMAN. 

Friend, 
I envy thee ! — 

FALKNER. 

Eno' of me — no^v for thyself, what news 1 
Thy Floweret of the West — thy fair betroth'd — 
The maid we rescued from the Afric corsair 



SCENE i] OR, THE BIRTHRIGHT. 7 

"NA^itli her brave lather — in the Indian seas — 
Tliou'st seen her ? — 

NORMAN. 

No ! — I had more wisely, saved 
My time and speed. Her sire is dead — the stranger 
Sits at his hearth ; and Avlth her next of kin 
Hard by this spot — this very spot — dear Falkner, 
I\Iy Violet dwells : look where the sunlight gilds 
The time-worn towers of stately Arundel — 
Thither my steps are bound ; — a happy chance 
Our trysting-place should have been chosen here ! — 
I'd not have gone one bowshot from the path 
That leads my soul to bask in Violet's eyes — 
No, not for all the lands my journey traversed, 
Nor — what is more — for the best ship that ever 
Bore the plumed Victory o'er the joyous main. 

[^Gohig out. 

FALKNER. 

Hold — but tlie priest, thy foster-father, Onslow — 
Hast thou sought /ti?n ? 

NORMAN. 

Thou dear old man, forgive me ! 
I do believe as whirlpools to the sea 
Love is to life !— Since first I leapt on land 
I have had no thought — no dream — no fear — no liope 
^^ hicli the absorbing waves of one strong j)assi()n 
Have not engulphed ! — Wilt serve me Falkner ? — J3ear 
Tiiis letter to the priest — the place inscriin'd 
Scarce two hours' jom-ney hence ; — say I will seek him 
Perchance this night — if not, the morrow's dawn. 



8 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act i. 

Let all good news be glad upon thy tongue — 

How I am well — strong — gay — how every night — 

IMark — tell him this — (good men at home are apt 

To judge us seamen harshly) — every night 

On the far seas 'his foster-son recall'd 

The words he taught my infant lips, — and pray'd 

Blessings on that grey head. 

FALKNER. 

I'll do thy bidding. 

NORMAN. 

So now to Violet. 

FALKNER. 

Hark ! — thy men are true — 
Thy ship at hand : if she say " ay " — hoist sail, 
Off with the prize. I prithee, is she rich ? — 

NORMAN. 

Her sire died poor — thank Heaven, she is not rich ! 

FALKNER. 

I'm glad to hear it — Had she lands and beeves, 
And gold, you might forswear the sea. 

NORMAN. 

The sea ! 
No — not for Beauty's self ! the glorious sea — 
Where England grasps the trident of a god, 
And every breeze pays homage to her flag, 
And every wave hears Neptune's choral nymphs 
Hymn with innnortal music England's name ! — 
Forswear the sea ! ]\Iy bark shall be our honie ; — 
The gale shall chaunt our bridal melodies ; — 



SCENE n.] OR, THE BIRTHRIGHT. 



9 



The stars that light the angel palaces 

Of air, our lamps ; — our floors the crystal deep 

Studded with sap])hires sparkling as we pass ; 

Our roof— all Heaven !— my Beautiful, my Own ! 
Never did sail more gladly glide to port 
Than I to thee ! my anchor in thy faith, 
And in thine eyes my haven. — 

Farewell, Falkner. 
[Eu^eufif Norman and Falkner at opposite sides. 



SCENE II. 

The Gardens of the Castle of Arundel. 

Enter Ll\dy Arundel. 
It is the day — now five-and-twenty years 
Elapsed — the anniversal day of woe ! 

Sun, thou art the all-piercing eye of Heaven, 
And to thy gaze my heart's dark caves lie bare 
With tlieir unnatural secret.— Silence, Conscience ! 
Have I not rank— power— Avealth—unstain'd repute ? 
So Mill 1 wrap my ermine round the past. 

And— Ah— he con)es ! my son— my noble boy, 

1 see thee, and air briirhtens ! — 

LORD ASHDALE {speaking without to Servants). 

Yes — old Rowland ! — 
And, stay, be sure the falcon which my Lord 
Of Leicester sent me. AVe will try his metal. 



10 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act i 

Enter Ashdale. 

Good morrow, mother — Hum — metliought that Violet 
Were here. Well ! what with you and Mistress 

Prudence, 
That virgin legacy of starch and buckram 
Which Violet's father (rest his soul!) bequeath'd her, 
I might as well be cousinless. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

My son. 
She is no bride for Arundel's young heir. 

ASHDALE. 

Who spoke of brides ? — Can we not gaze on Beauty 
Save by the torch of Hymen ? — To be gallant — 
Breathe out a score of sighs, or vows, or sonnets — 
JMirror the changes in that Heaven called " Woman " — 
And smooth our language to a dainty sadness ; — 
All tins— 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Is love ! — 

ASHDALE. 

No — No — amusement, mother. 
The pastoral recreation of the groves 
Where birds and shepherds dissipate their dulness 
By the sweet pastime amorous poets sing of. 
You take this matter far too solemnly ; 
I own I would abridge the days — the days {yawning) 
Are wondrous lengthy in the country, mother — 
By practising the bow of Cupid, just 



SCENE n] OR, THE niKTHRIGIlT. H 

To keep one's hand in, with my blush-faced cousin ! 
How does this phinie become me ? 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Well ! yet I 
\\'ould have it sweep less loosely. 

ASHDALE. 

Now-a-days 
Our love is worn just as I wear this plume, 
A glancing feather, gay with every Avind, 
And playing o'er a liglit and giddy brain 
Such as your sou's — {kissing her hand)— Let the 
plume j)lay, sAveet mother ! 

LADY ARUNDEL {foudli/). 

All ! Percy^ Percy ! 

ASHDALE. 

Well, I hear my steed 
Neighing impatience, and the silver bells 
On my dark falcon shaking their OAvn gladness 
Into the limber air ; — the sun will halt 
Midway in heaven ere my return ; meanwhile. 
If you would keep me faithful to your hand, 
Give me my wings— in other words (now, frown not), 
The court, the camp, or any life but this. 
If my fair cousin saddens all my sunshine 
M'ith eyes so coldly gentle ;— fare you well. 

\_E.rit AsHDALE. 
LADY ARUNDEL. 

f^ lightT-too vain for liis ancestral honours — 



12 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act i. 

And yet, what mother does not love her son 
Best for the faults she chides in him ? 

Enter Violet and Mistress Prudence. 

JMy Violet, 
Why still this pensive brow — this garb of grief ? 

VIOLET. 

Lady, I am an orphan ! 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Nay, take comfort. — 
Yet is there not a softer sorrow, Violet, 
In thy meek eyes than that which bathes with tears 
A father's holy urn ? Thou turn'st away — 
{Angrily) — Does thy gaze rove for Ashdale ? 

Girl, beware — 
The love that trifles round the charms it gilds 
Oft ruins while it shines. 

VIOLET. 

You can speak thus, 
Yet bid me grieve not that I am an orphan ! 

LADY ARUNDEL (toucjied). 

Forgive me, I was hasty ! — No, you do not — 
Say it — you do not love my graceless Percy ? 

VIOLET. 

You know that I have shunn'd him ! — I am poor ; 
But Poverty is proud {aside), and Memory faithful. 

LADY ARUNDEL {as to herself) . 

1 have higli hopes for Ashdale — bright desires — 
AV^ild schemes — the last son of a race whose lords 



SCENE 11] OR, THE BIRTHRIGHT. 13 

Have souirht their mates beside the hearth of kiiiirs, 
He stands before me as a dream of i;lory, 
Haunting some young ambition ; and mine eyes 
Pierce to the future, when these bones are dust, 
And see him princeliest of the Hon tribe 
Wliose swords and coronals gleam around the throne, 
The guardian stars of the Imperial Isle. 
Kings shall revere his mother ! 

Enter Sir Maurice. 

SIR MAURICE {aaide to Lady Arundel). 

Hark ! he lives ! 

lady ARUNDEL. 

He ! who ? 

SIR MAURICE. 

The young gentleman who stands" between your 
Percy and his inheritance! Ugh, ugh! (coughmg). 
It is very cold. {To Mistress PrudeTnce.) Suppose 
you take a walk with your fair charge, Mistress Pru- 
dence ; and, not to waste your time, you can pray for 
grace to spin me a pair of lambs-wool stockings against 
Michaelmas. 

mistress prudence. 

Stockings, Sir Maurice ! Marry, come up ; is that 
a delicate allusion ? 

[ IValhs up the .stage with ViOLET. 

SIR MAURICE {to LaDY ArUNDEL). 

I tell thee, — he lives ; he is at hand ; no longer a 
babe, a child, a helpless boy ; but a stout man, with a 



14 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act i. 

ship, and a name, and a crew, — and money, for what 
I know. Your son Percy is a fine youth. It is a 
pity his father married before, and had other sons. But 
for your Lordships of Ashdale and Arundel, your Percy 
would be as poor — as poor as old INIaurice Beevor, 
The air is very keen. Poverty is subject to ague 
(f{hivers)f and to asthma (wheezes)^ and to cold rheums 
and catarrhs (sneezes), and to pains in the loins, 
lumbago, and sciatica (I'ubs himself) ; and when 
Poverty begs, the dogs hark at it ; and when Poverty 
is ill, the doctors mangle it ; and when Poverty is 
dying, the priests scold at it; and when Poverty is 
dead, nobody weeps for it. If this young man prove 
his case, your son, Percy Ashdale, will he very poor ! 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

My son, my Percy ! but the priest is faithful. He 
has sworn 

SIR MAURICE. 

To keep thy secret only while thy father and thy 
spouse lived : they are dead. But the priest has no proofs 
to back his tale ? 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Alas ! he has. 

SIR MAURICE. 

He has ! Why did you never tell me that before ? 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Because— because (aside) I feared thy avarice more 
than the priest's conscience. 



SCENE II.] OR, THE BIRTHRIGHT. 15 

SIR MAURICE (aside). 

Hum ! she iiiiist come to me lor aid now. I will i^ct 
these proofs. Under the surface of this business I see 
a great many gold and silver fishes. Hum ! I \\\\\ 
betjin to any:le ! 

L.\DY ARUNDEL. 

IMy own thoughts confuse me. Wbat sliould be 
!one ? 

SIR MAURICE. 

I know a nice little farm to be sold on the other side 
'f the river Ex; but I am very poor — a very poor old 
knight. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Do you trifle with me ? What is your counsel ? 

SIR MAURICE. 

There is a great deal of game on it ; partridges, hares, 
wild geese, snipes, and plovers (smacking his lips) ; be- 
sides a magnificent preserve of sparrows, which I can 
ilways sell to the little blackguards in the streets for a 
penny a hundred. But I am very poor — a very poor old 
knight. 

L.\DY ARUNDEL. 

Witldn, within ! You shall have gold — what you 
will ; we must meet this danger ! 

SIR MAURICE. 

If she had said "gold" at first, I should have saved 



16 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act i. 

exactly one minute and three quarters ! Madam, I fol- 
low you. Never fear, I will secure the proofs. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

I dreamed of him last night ; a fearful dream ! 

\_E,vit Lady Arundel within the house. 

Mistress Prudence and Violet advance. 

MISTRESS prudence. 

The old miser ! See how I will chafe him. (To Sir 
Maurice, curtsying very low.) Worshipful Sir Mau- 
rice, may I crave your blessing ? 

sir MAURICE (aside). 

I never heard of a man being asked to give his bless- 
ing who was not expected to give something else along 
with it. {Aloud.) Chut, chut ! what do you want with 
a blessing, you elderly heathen ? 

MISTRESS PRUDENCE. 

Why, it does not cost anything. 

SIR MAURICE (aside). 

That's a jibe at my poverty. Every fool has a stone 
for the poor. (Aloud?) Does not cost anything ! 
Does it bring in anything ? What will you give for it ? 

MISTRESS PRUDENCE. 

This ribbon. 

SIR MAURICE (taking the rihhon). 
Hum ! it will do for a shoe-tie. There, bless you, 



SCENE M.] OR, THE niRTIlRIGHT. 17 

and mend von, and inrline vonr sinful old lieart to niv 
Iand)s'-\vool stockini:;s ! Do you want to be blessed too, 
child ? 

VIOLET. 

Nay, indeed, sir ! 

SIR MAURICE. 

The girls grow perter every day ! That hypocritical 
Jezabel looks all the merrier for my benediction. I 
am afraid she has got a bargain out of me. 

[iiJc/77 ivithbi the hoii.se. 

Muhcnt Violet — JMistress Prudence. 

MISTRESS prudence. 

Now would I give my best peach-coloured padusoy 
to know why that malicious old miser has so mighty 
an influence with the Lady of Arundel. 

VIOLET. 

You forget he is her relative ; nay, failing Lord 
Ashdale, the heir-at-law to the estates of Arundel. 
— Ah, INIistress Prudence, how shall I thank thee for 
aiding me to baffle the unwelcome suit of this young 
lord ? ' 

MISTRESS PRUDENCE. 

Dear child, I am amply repaid for it by my own 
conscience — (^a.side) and the young lord's mother, ^'ou 
sigh, sweetheart — thinking still of your absent sailor ? 

VIOLET. 

A\'hen do I cease to think of him ? — and now that 
my poor father is gone, more than ever. His pride 

c 



18 THE SEA-CAPTAIN ; [act i. 

might have forl)id my union with one of obscure birth — 
but now — 

MISTRESS PRUDENCE. 

He is indeed a cavalier of very comely presence ! 
How noble he looked the day he leaped on board the 
Corsair — with his bold crew shouting round liim — 
" Enirland and Elizabeth — Norman to the rescue !" I 
think I see him now — his eyes flashing through the 
smoke. Ah, lady-bird, but for him we two innocent 
virgins would have been put up for sale in the Beauty- 
iMarket at Tunis ! Why, you don't hear a word I say. 
Well, if you like solitude, as the young lord is abroad 
for the forenoon, I will leave you awhile ; I have my 
great tapestry-work of the loves of King Solomon and 
Queen Sheba to finish ; and when one has ceased to feel 
love it is a comfort at least to create it — in tent-stitch. 

[Eait. 

VIOLET. 

O for some fairy talisman to conjure 

Up to these longing eyes the form they pine for ! 

And yet in love there's no such word as absence ! 

The loved one, like our guardian spirit, walks 

Beside us ever, — shines upon the beam — 

Perfumes the flower — and sighs in every breeze ! 

Its presence gave such beauty to the world 

That all things beautiful its likeness are ; 

And aught in sound most sweet, to sight most fair, 

Breathes with its voice, or like its aspect smiles. 

Enter Norman. 
There spoke my fancy, not my heart ! — Where art thou, 
My unforgotten Norman ? 



SCENE II. ] OR, THE BIIlTinUr.HT. 19 

NORMAN. 

At thy feet ! 
Oh, have I lived to see tliee once airain ? 
JJreatla' the same air?— my own, my blessed one ! 
Look up— look up — these are the arms which shelter'd 
When the storm howl'd around ; and these the lips 
Where, till this hour, the sad and holy kiss 
Of parting lin<rer'd — as the fragrance left 
13y angels Avlien they touch the earth and vanish. 
J»<»k up — Night never panted for the sun 
As for thine eyes, my soul ! — 

VIOLET. 

Thrice joyous day ! 
My Norman !— is it thou, indeed ? — my Norman ! 

NORMAN. 

Look up, look up, my Violet — weeping? lie! 
And trembling too — yet leaning on my breast. 
In truth thou art too soft for such rude shelter! 
Look u}) — I come to woo thee to the seas. 
My sailor's bride — hast thou no voice but blushes? 
Nay — from those roses let me, like the bee. 
Drag forth the secret sweetness ! — 

VIOLET. 

Oh, what thoughts 
Were kept for speech when we once more should meet, 
Now Itlotted from the page — and all I feel 
h—T/iou art with me !— 

NORMAN. 

Not to part again. 
c 2 



20 THE SEA-CAPTAIN ; [act i. 

Enter Mistress Prudence. 

MISTRESS PRUDENCE. 

What do I see ? — I thoiiglit that I heard voices ! 
Why, Captain Norman ! — It must be his ghost ! 

NORMAN. 

Ah, my fair governante ! — By this hand. 

And this most chaste salute, I'm flesh and blood ! 

MISTRESS PRUDENCE. 

Fie, Captain, fie ! But pray be gone — The Countess — 
If she should come — 

NORMAN. 

Oh, then I am a gliost ! 

MISTRESS PRUDENCE. 

Still the same merry gentleman ! But think 
Of my responsibilities. What would 
The Countess say^ if I allowed myself 
To see a stranger speaking to her ward ? 

NORMAN. 

See, Mistress Prudence ? — oh, if that be all, 
What see you now ? 

[ Clapping a piece of gold to the left eye. 

MISTRESS PRUDENCE. 

Why, nothing with the left eye — 
The right has still a morbid sensibility ! 

NORMAN. 

Poor thing ! — this golden ointment soon will cure it ! 

[^Clapping another piece of gold to the right eye. 
A^'^hat see, you now, my Prudence ? 



SCENE II.] OR, TJIE BIRTH IIKJUT. 21 

MISTRESS PRUDENCE. 

Not a soul ! 

NORMAN ((i6-ide). 

Faith, 'tis a mercy on a poor man's purse 

That some old ladies were not born witli three eyes ! 

[Prudence ^ucs up the ,stage. 

VIOLET. 

Nay, my own Norman — nay I — You heard no step ? 
Thi.s awful woman — 

NORMAN. 

Woman ! a sweet word ! 
Too sweet for terror, Violet ! — 

VIOLET. 

You know not 
The Dame of Arundel — her yianie has terror ! 
Men whisper sorcery wliere lier dark eye falls ; 
Her lonely lamp outlives Nig^lit's latest star. 
And o'er her beauty some dark memory glooms. 
Too proud for penitence — too stern for sorrow. — 
All ! my lost father ! — 

nor:man. 

Violet, thou and I 
Perchance are orphans both upon the earth : 
So turn we both from earth to that great mother 
(The only parent I have known), whose face 
Is bright with gazing ever on the stars — 
The jMother Sea ; — and for our Father, \'^ioIet, 
\\'e"ll look for Him in heaven ! 

[ Thff/ ^'•o tijj the at age. 



22 THE SEA-CAPTAIN ; [act i. 

Enter Lady Arundel and Sir Maurice. 

[Mistress Prudence creepa of. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

It must be so ! — 
There is no other course ! 

SIR MAURICE. 

Witliout the proofs 
The old man's story were but idle wind — 
This rude but hunger-witted rascal shall 
To Onslow's house — seize on the proofs — - 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Quick ! — quick ! — 
See to it quick, good kinsman ! 

[Exit Sir Maurice. 

Re-enter Norman and Violet. 

VIOLET. 

It is she ! 

Meet her not — nay, you know not her proud temper ! 

NORMAN. 

Pshaw for her pride ! — present me boldly ! — 'Sdeath ! 
Blush you for me ? — He who's a king on deck 
Is every subject's equal on the land. 
I will advance ! 

LADY ARUNDEL (turning suddenly). 

Avenging angels, spare me ! 

NORMAN. 

Pardon tlie seeming boldness of my presence. 



SCENE II.] OR, Tin: BIRTIIKKJIIT. '23 

VIOLET. 

Our f]^alliint countryman, of whom my lallu'r 
So often spoki*, who iVom the Algerine 
Rescued our lives and freedt)m. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

All ! — your name, sir 

NORMAN. 

A humble name, fair lady ; — Norman. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

So! 
Arm me, thou genius of all women — Craft ! 
Sir, you are welcome. "Walk within and hold 
Our home a hostel while it lists you. 

NORMAN. 

Madam, 
'Twill be a thoui^ht for pride in distant times 
To have been your guest. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

He knows not what I am. 
I will forfend all peril. Fair sir, follow. 

[Re-enters the Caatle. 

VIOLET. 

Strange — Norman ! 

NORMAN 

What ? 



f 

•24 THE SEA-CAPTAIN ; [act i. 

VIOLET. 

I never knew her yet 
So courteous to a stranger. 

NORMAN. 

Ah, sweet lass ! 
I told thee right. AVe Princes of the Sea 
Are no such despicable gallants, eh ? 
O thought ol' joy ! — one roof to shelter both, — 
To see thee, hear thee, touch thy hand, and glide 
By thy dear side adown the blessed time ! 
A most majestic lady ! — her sweet lace 
ISIade my heart tremble^ and call'd back old dreams 
Of AA'ell — Has she a son ? 

VIOLET. 

Ah, yes ! 

NORMAN. 

In truth 
A liapj>y man ! 

VIOLET. 

Yet he might envy thee ! 

NORMAN. 

IMost arch reprover, yes ! — as kings themselves 
]Miy;lit envv one whose arm entwines thee thus ! 

\JSixeunt within the Castle. 

END OF ACT I. 



cFNEi] OH. THE nillTIlRKMIT. 25 



ACT II. 

i?CENE I. 

^ room in the Castle. 
Knter Stirvunt, prccedhig Sir 3Iaurice. 

SERVANT {insolently). 

You can take a seat, Sir Maurice ; my Lady is 
engaged. She will see you when her leisure suits. 

SIR MAURICE. 

What a modest, respectful, civil fellow it is ! you 
know behaviour to a man of quality, I see ; if I did not 
fear to corru})t thy morals, l)y this light I would give 
thee a penny. 

SERVANT {ha(/' aside). 

" A man of (juality ! " — a beggarly poor cousin — 
marry, come up! [_Ed'it. 

SIR MALRICE. 

-Vh, there it is, a beggarly poor cousin ! 

Up from my cradle, a poor beggarly cousin ! 

Butt for mv Lord — convenience for my Lady — 

Jibe for the lackey. And men Idame Sir Maurice 

For loving gold ! — My youth was drudged away 

In penury and de]»endence — manhocMl went 

In piling wealtli that age might mount to jjower. 

How the sleek rogues would fawn on tiie poor cousin 



/ 

26 THE SEA-CAPTAIN ; [act u. 

If they could peep into his money-chest ! 

Let Giiussen get the proofs, and half the lands 

Of this proud Countess scarce shall wring them from 

me ! 
Then let the spendthrift Percy be the heir, 
I'll get the other half in mortgages. 
Loans, and post obits. Ha, ha ! who will then be 
The beggarly poor cousin ? 

Enter Lady Arundel. 

I've despatch'd 
Gaussen to Onslow's house — Well, why so pale ? 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

He is beneath my roof — this youth, this Norman — 
JMy guest ! 

SIR MAURICE. 

Your guest ! (vindictively) — The fly is in the web ! 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Scarce had you left, when, lo ! he stood before me. 
I knew him ere he spoke — his father's eyes 
Look'd me to stone in his — I did not swoon, 
I did not tremble ! 

SIR MAURICE. 

Chut, chut! you dissembled 
Of course — you are a woman ! 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

What dark perils 
(ialher around me now ! 



SCENE i] OR, THE BIRTinUOHT. 27 

SIR MAURICE (whixppriug). 

Remove him then 
W'liile yet 'tis time. 

LADY ARl XDEL. 

Remove ? — thy stealthy voice 
Curdles my veins. Remove him? — yes; 1 have 
A scheme to make all safe. I learn, thro' Prndencis 
That he loves Violet — aaooM her months ago 
In the far Indian seas. 'Tuas he ulio saved her 
When, homeward from the isle her father govern'd, 
Their ship was captured by the Algerine. 

SIR MAURICE {impatiently). 
W^ell, well; — I see — you will befriend the suit? 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Ay, and promote the flight ! — To some fair clime 

In the New ^^''orld the hurrying seas shall waft them. 

And I shall sleej» in peace. 

SIR MAURICE. 

He loves the girl ! 
What will tliv Percy say — Hotspur the Second — 
\\'hen he discovers 

L.\DY ARUNDEL. 

Ere he learn the love, 
Their bark is on the deep. I dare not tarry. 
He is returu'd — is with them now — a spark 
\\'ould tire his jealous humour, lie at hand, 
Lest I may need thy aid. 



28 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act ii. 

SIR MAURICE. 

Thou'rt on the abyss ! 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

But my brain reels not, and my step is firm ! 

SIR MAURICE. 

In love with Violet ! I see, I see ; 

I'll set this fiery Percy on his rival. 

If one should perish by the sword, the other 

Dies by the law. Thanks to these proofs, I'll make 

The rival's contest seem the assassin's snare. 

Ha, ha ! were these men dead, I should be heir 

To Arundel and Ashdale. For the Countess — 

The worm's already at her heart ! Ah, shall I 

Then be a miser ? — Ho, there ! my Lord's lackeys ! — 

Room for the Earl of Arundel ! You dined 

With the Earl yesterday ? A worthy Lord ! 

I'll marry a young bride, get heirs, and keep 

A lean poor cousin of my own to play 

At leapfrog with the little INIaurices. 

Enter Lord Ashdale (in dUorder) . 

ASHDALE. 

By Heavens ! this stranger's insolence would fire 

An anchorite's patience. 'Sdeath ! his hand press'd hers, 

His breathing fann'd her locks. 

sir MAURICE. 

How now, my Hector, 
IMy diamond, jipple of my eye ? How now ? — 
Chafed, vexed? 



SCENE I.] OR, THE BIRTIIIIKHIT. '29 

ASHDALE. 

Home, home. Anatomy, and drive 
The mice from thy larder. 

SIR MAURICE. 

Mice ! — Zounds, liow can I 
Keep mice ? — I can't afford it — they were starved 
To death an age ago! — the last was found, 
Come Christmas three years, stretched beside a Ijune 
In that same larder — so consumed and worn 
By pious fast — 'twas awful to behold it ! 
I canonized its corpse in spirits of wine, 
And set it in the porch — a solemn warning 
To thieves and beggars. {Aside) Shall I be avenged — 
Shall I — for this ? Come, come, my pretty Percy ; 
I'll tell thee why thou strid'st about a lion : — 
Dogs would invade thy bone. This stranger loves 
'i^iiy Violet. 

ASHDALE. 

Loves her ! 

SIR MAURICE. 

And will win her too — 
Unle.<js I lielp thee — for (but mum ! — no word of it) 
Thy mother backs his suit. — Thou art no match 
My innocent Percy, for a single woman ; 
15ut two — a virgin and a widow — would 
Have made King Solomon himself a ninny. 

ASHDALE. 

All Egypt's plagues confound this fellow ! Deaf 
Ev'n to affront. — He wards off all my taunts 



30 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act ii. 

With a blunt, ?ailorlike, and danin'cl good humour 
Tliat makes me seem, ev'n to myself, less like 
An angry rival than a saucy clown. 

SIR MAURICE. 

Be cool — be cool now — take a walk with me. 
And talk upon it. 

ASHDALE. 

Wilt thou really serve me ? 

SIR MAURICE. 

Ay, and for nothing too ! — you patient saints 

Make miracles. Ha, ha ! you like a jest 

On old Sir Maurice. All men joke upon 

The poor old cousin — ha, ha, ha ! — Come, Hotspur. 

\_Ed'eunt. 



SCENE H. 

yi Gothic hall. — On one side a huge hearth, over which 
a scutcheon and old banners ; the walls hung 
with armour and ancient portraits. — In the front of 
the .stage a table spread with fruits and wine. 

Lady Arundel — Norman — Violet. 

NORMAN. 

Ha, ha! in Iruth we made a scurvy figure 
After our shipwreck. 



SCENE II.]' OR, THE RIRTHRKHIT 31 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

You jest merrily 
At your misfortunes ! 

NORMAN. 

'Tis the way witli sailors ; 
Still in extremes. I can be sad sometimes. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

\'our wanderings have been long : your sight will Mess 
Your parents ? 

NORMAN. 

Ah ! I never knew that word. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

I Your voice has sorrow in its calm. If I 
In aught could serve you, trust me ! 

VIOLET. 

Trust her, Norman. 
Mt'thinks in the sad tale of thy young years 
There's that which makes a friend, wherever Pity 
, Lives, in the heart of woman. 



NORMAN {to Lady Arundel). 

Gentle huly, 
The key of some cliarm'd nmsic in your voice 
Unlocks a long-closed chamber in my soul ; 
And would you listen to an outcast's tale, 
'Tis briefly told. Until my fourteenth year, 
IJeneath the roof of an old village priest, 
\or far from hence, my childhood wore away. 



t 



32 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act ii. 

Then waked within me anxious thoughts and deep. 
Throughout the liberal and melodious nature 
Something seem'd absent — what I scarcely knew — 
Till one calm night, when over earth and wave 
Heaven looked its love from all its numberless stars — 
M^atcliful yet breathless — suddenly the sense 
Of my sweet want swell'd in me^ and I ask'd 
The priest, why I was motherless ! 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

And he ? 

NORMAN. 

A\'^ept as he answered, " I was no])ly born !" 

LADY ARUNDEL (dsidc) . 

The traitor ! 

NORMAN. 

And that time would brinir the hour, 
As yet denied, when from a dismal past 
Would dawn a luminous future. As he spake 
There gleam'd across my soul a dim remembrance 
Of a pale face in infancy beheld — 
A shadowy face, but from whose lips there breathed 
The words tliat none but mothers nmrmur ! 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Oh, 

My heart, be still. ! 

NORMAN. 

'Twas at that time there came 
Into our hamlet a rude, jovial seaman, 



SCENE II] OR. THE HlRTMRKjur 



33 



^Vhh the fmnk mien boys welcome, and wild tales 
Of tiie far Indian lands, IWun ul,icli mine ear 
Drank envious wonder. Briel-his le^^ends fired me 
And from the deep, whose billows washVl the shore ' 
On whicii our casements look'd, I heard a voice 

That woo'd me to its bosom : Raleioji's fame, 

The Ne^v WovliVs marvels, then made old men heroes. 

And youn- men dreamers ! So I left my Jiome 

^^'ith that wild seaman. 

f^ADY ARUNDEL. 

^ . , E''« y«u left, the priest 

^>aid nought to make less dark your lineajre ? 

NORMAN. 

JMor did he chide my ardour. " f^," he said ; 
" ^V'm for thyself a name that pride may envy 
And pride, which is thy foe, will own thee yet!" 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

I l)reathe more freely ! 

NORMAN. 

. ^^an you heed thus gently 

The stranger's tale ! Your colour co,nes and goes. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Your story moves me nmch : pray you, resume. 

NORMAN. 

The villain whom I trusted, ;vhen we reached 
Ihe bark he ruled, cast me to chains and darkness, 

D 



34 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act ii. 

And so to sea. At length, no land in sight, 
His crew, dark swarthy men — the refuse crimes 
Of many hmds — (for he, it seems, a pirate) — 
Call'd me on deck — struck off my fetters : " Boy," 
He said, and grimly smiled ; " not mine the wrong: 
I'hy chains are forged from gold, the gold of those 
Who gave thee birth !" 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

A lie ! a hideous lie ! 
Be sure a lie ! 

NORMAN. 

I answer'd so, and wrench'd 
From his own hand the blade it bore, and struck 
The slanderer to my feet. With that a shout, 
A hundred knives gleam'd round me ; but the pirate. 
Wiping the gore from his gash'd brow, cried, " Hold ; 
Such death were mercy." — Then they gi'ip'd and bound 

me 
To a slight plank ; spread to the wind their sails ; 
And left me on the waves alone with God ! 

VIOLET {taking his hand). 
My heart melts in my eyes : — and He preserved thee ! 

NORMAN. 

That day, and all that night, upon the seas 
Toss'd the frail barrier between life and death. 
Heaven luU'd the gales ; and, when the stars came forth, 
All look'd so bland and gentle that I wept, 
Recall'd that wretch's words, and murmur'd, " Wave 



SCENE II.] OK, THK milTiniKJIIT. .^5 

And wind are kinder than a j)aren1." Ijad\, 
Dost fJinu weep also .' 

LADV ARUNDEL. 

Do I I Nay, ijfo on ! 



V ' &' 



NOHMAN. 



Day dawn'd, and, giitteriiii;- in tlie snn, heliold 



A sail — a Hair ! 



VIOLET. 

^^^ell, well. 

NORM AN. 

It pass'd away, 
And saw me not. Noon, and then thirst and famine ; 
And, with parchM lips, I call'd on death, and sought 
To wrench n)y limbs from the stiff cords that gnaw'd 
Into the flesh, and drop into the deep ; 
And then methought I saw, beneath the clear 
And crystal lymph, a dark, swift-moving thing, 
A\'ith watchful glassy eyes, — the ocean-monster 
That follows ships for prey. Then life once more 
Grew sweet, and with a straind and horrent gaze. 
And lifted hair, I floated on, till sense 
Grew dim and dimlier, and a terrible sleep — 
In which still — still — those livid eyes met mine — 
Fell on me, and 

vrnrET. 

Go on ! 

I) •> 



36 



THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act ii. 



NORMAN. 

I woke, and heard 
My native tongue. Kind looks were bent upon me : 
I lay on deck — escaped the ghastly death ; 
For God had watch'd the sleeper ! 

VIOLET (half aside) . 

My own Norman ! 

NORMAN. 

'Twas a brave seaman, who with Raleigh served. 

That own'd the ship. Beneath his fostering eyes 

I fought and labour' d upward. At his death-— 

[A death, may such be mine ! — a hero's death ! — 

The blue flag waving o'er the victory won !]— 

He left me the sole heir to all his wealth, — 

Some sacks of pistoles— his good frigate— and 

His honest name! {To Violet.) Fair maid, the 

happiest deed 
That decks my life thou knowest ! 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

And the priest : 
Hast thou not seen him since ye parted ? 

NORMAN. 

No; 
But two short days return'd to these dear shores. 
{Aside to Violet.) Those eyes the guiding stars by 
which I steer'd. 



SCENE II.] OK, THE BIRTHRUJIIT. ;J7 

[Violet wid Norman converse apart. 

LADY ARUNDEL {gazhig OH them). 

He loves — yes, there my liope ! Ha ! Percy's voice ! 
I imist bet(uile or blind h'nn. One day more. 
And all is safe. Fair Sir, auon I join you. 

[E.vit. 

VIOLET. 

And thou hast loved nie thus ? 

NORMAN. 

Thus, Violet ; nay, — 
For when had true love words for all its secrets ? 
In some sweet night, becalm'd upon the deep, 
The blue air breathless in the starry peace, 
After long silence, hush'd as heaven, but fillVl 
With happy thoughts as heaven with angels, tlion 
Shalt hft thine eyes to mine, and with a dance 
Learn how tbe lonely love ! 

VIOLET. 

Not lonely, Norman : 
Not lonely, benceforth : / sball be with thee ! 
Wiiere'er thou goest, my soul is ; and thy love 
Has grown life's life. To see thee, hear thee, (hx-am 
Of thee when absent — to bear all — brave all — 

By thy dear side ; — this has become my nature 

Thy shadow, deepening as thy day declines, 
And dying when thou settest. 



38 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act ii. 

NORMAN. 

Heaven desert me 
If by one cold look I should ever chill 
The woman heart within thee ! 

VIOLET. 

So, my Norman, 
In cloud, or sunshine — labour as repose — 
Meek tho' I be, and lowly, — thou shait find 
This courage of my sex, that bears all change 
Save change in thee — and never breathes one murmur, 
Unless it be a prayer to guard my Norman ! 

NORMAN. 

JMy bride — my blessing — my adored ! 

Enter Ashdale. 

ASHDALE. 

Gramercy ! 
I \vell escaped to meet my lady mother ! 
This tale of the old knight has fired my blood. 
I would not see her in this mood — 

(turning and perceiving Violet and Norman) 

By heavens ! 
Whispering ! — so close ! — 

(approaching^ Familiar sir — excuse me : 
I do not see the golden spurs of knighthood — 

NORMAN (aside). 

These landsmen, who would shake if the wind blew, 
Are mighty quarrelsome. The golden spurs ! 



SCENE II.] OR, THE HIRTllUKJHT. 39 

He thinks we ride on horseback thro' the seas ! 
Alas ! we sailors liave not so niucli gold 
That we should waste it on our heels. 

ASHDALE. 

D'ye jest, sir? 

VIOLET. 

Oh cousin, fie ! 

ASHDALE {niimickin fr her). 

Oh cousin, tie ! — sir, mark me : 
There's one too many present — 

N0R3IAN (aside). 

On my life 
I think with him ! — he might remove the objection ! — 

ASHDALE. 

Good Master Norman, in the seneschal's hall 
You'll find your equals. 

NORMAN. 

Haughty lord, not so. 
He who calls me his equal first must prove 
His arm as strong — his blade as keen — his heart 
As calm in peril ! — tush ! put up thy sword. 
He not my equal who insults his guest, 
And seeks his safety in the eyes of woman. 

Enter Lady Arundel. 



40 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act ii. 

VIOLET. 

Protect your guest from your rash son ! 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Lord Aslidale — 
These humours wrong your birth. To you, sir stranger. 
Have 1 in aught so fail'd that in the son 
You should rebuke the mother ? 

NORMAN. 

Ask your son 
It" I was prompt to answer scorn by strife ! 

ASHDALE. 

Nay, it is true, more prompt in taking licence/ 
Than courting chastisement ! 

NORMAN. 

You hear him, lady. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Ashdale, be ruled — my best beloved — my child, 
Forbear — you — 

ASHDALE {quickly). 

Learn 'd in childhood from my mother 
To brook no rival, and to fear no foe ! 
I am too old to alter now. Observe me : 
You thwart my suit to Violet — you defend 
This insolent stranger. Mother, take my counsel : 
Despatch him hence and straight, or, by mine honour. 
Blood will l)e shed. — Beware ! 



SCENE II.] OR, THE BIinHRKJIIT. 41 

LADY ASH DALE. 

IMood ! blood ! whose blood ? 

ASHDALE. 

Not mine — for noble knighthood is too holy 
For varlet weapons ! — not your son's — 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

My son's ! 

ASH DALE. 

Look to it, mother ! — We may meet again, sir. 
Fie, mother ! pale ? — Beshrew me, but tliose eyes 
Look fondly on the knave ! 

[Ectit. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

O, sharper than 
The serpent's tooth ! — 

NORMAN. 

Sweet hostess, do not tear me ; 
There is a something in your looks that melts 
The manhood in me back to second childhood. 
Let him rail on — he is your son, and safe 
From the poor stranger's sword. 

L.\DY ARUNDEL. 

Cio, Violet, — 
Xo, stay — come back — I know thy secret, girl — 
Th<»u lovot this Norman ? 



42 THE SEA-CAPTAIN ; [act n. 



VIOLET. 

Lady — I — he saved 



My life and honour — 



LADY ARUNDEL. 

Joy ! — oh, joy ! retire 
And trust in nie — 

[Eait Violet. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Now, sir — (aside) Alas ! alas ! 
How like to his dead father ! 

NORMAN. 

Speak — command, 
And learn how thou canst move me ! 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

I'm a mother ! 
J live but for this boy — heart, life, and soul, 
Are interweaved with his ! 

NORMAN. 

How sweet to hear 
How mothers love their sons ! 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

He is proud and fiery, 
Quick to affront, slow to forgive. Nay, more : 
Ashdale hath set his heart where thine is placed ; 
The air both breathe seems blood-red to my eyes. 
Fly with her !— fly, this night ! 



^CENE ii] OR, THK BIUTIIRKJHT. 43 

NORMAN. 

This night, witli her ? 
Rapture! With Violet? 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

You consent ? 



NORMAN. 

And yet 



Mv birth untrack'd- 



LADY ARUNDEL. 

Oh, lose not for a doubt 
Your certain bliss ; — and, heed me — I have wealth 
To sharpen law, and power to ripen justice ; — 
I will explore the mazes of this mystery — 
I — I will track your parents! 

NORMAN. 

Blessed lady ! 
What have I done, that thou shouldst care for Norman ? 
My parents ! — 6nd me one with eyes like thine, 
And, were she lowliest of the hamlet born, 
I would not chancre with monarchs. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Mighty Nature! 
Why speak'st thou thus to him, yet dumb to me ? 
\\'hat is there in these haggard looks to charm tliee. 
Young strangtT .' 



44 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act ii. 

NORMAN. 

Madam, when I gaze upon thee, 
Methinks an angel's hand lifts up the veil 
Of Time — the (treat Magician ; and I see 
A face like thine bent o'er my infant couch, 
And — pardon me — it is a vain, wild thought — 
I know it is — but on my faith, I think 
My mother was like thee ! 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Like me ! ha, ha ! 
Most foolish thought. {Aaide) I shall go mad with 

terror 
If here he linger h)nger. Well, your ship 
Is nigh at hand ; you can embark to-night. 

NORMAN. 

So soon — so soon all mine ! — In distant years, 
Tho' we may meet no more — when thou, fair dame, 
Hast lost ev'n memory of the stranger — o'er 
The lonely deep, morning and night, shall rise 
His prayer for thee. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Thou, thou ! — a prayer for me ? 
A\'iJl Heaven record it ? Nature rushes on me — 
I cannot — I — forgive me ; ere you part 
We meet again, and — 

\Rusheii out. 



scENK ii] OR, THK HIRTHFUCJIIT. 45 

NORMAN. 

\\'lien I spoke of prayer 
Her lip grew white. \\'^hiit is there in this woinuii 
That half divides my thuui:;hts with Molet's love ? 
Strange, while 1 muse, a chill and solenm awe 
Creeps to my heart. Away, ye ill-timed omens ! 
A'iolet, at thy dear name the phantoms vanish, 
And the glad Future breaks, a Fairy Isle, — 
Thy voice its music, and thy smile its heaven ! 



END OF ACT II 



46 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act iii. 



ACT III. 

SCENE I. 

The Gardens of the Castle — a different part from 

that in Act I. 

MISTRESS PRUDENCE. 

Who would have thought the proud Countess would 
have been so pleased with the love of this wild Captain 
for my young lady ? I think he must have given her 
some of the golden ointment too ! But anything to 
thwart the suit of the young Lord. She expects him 
to marry no one less than a princess I suppose. 

Enter Sir Maurice. 

SIR MAURICE. 

Ugli ! ugh ! Have you seen Lord Ashdale pass this 
way 1 

MISTRESS PRUDENCE. 

No, your Worship ! 

SIR MAURICE {caressingly). 
So tliis sea-Captain is making love to your pretty 
charge. Mistress Prudence ! I suppose, between you 
and me, there will be a marriage in the family. 

MISTRESS PRUDENCE. 

I am sure, Sir Maurice, I sliall not say you nay. 

SIR MAURICE. 

Say me nay ? I never offered thee anything. 



scRNE i] OR, THE BIRTHRIGHT. 47 

MISTRESS PRUDENCE. 

I tliouijjlit you said " l)etween you and me there was 
to be a marriage in the family." ^^^e might do a sillier 
thing, Sir IMaurice. Better marry than do worse. 

SIR M.\URICE. 

Worse ! — Go and do your worst. I defy your seduc- 
tions, you anti(juated Dalilah. Hence ; and if you 
chance on Lord Ashdale, say I would see him. 

MISTRESS PRUDENCE. 

If you should be serious, Sir Maurice, in your pro- 
posal — 

SIR MAURICE. 

Pish! — am I to be your jibe too? — \_Ejc\t Mrs. 
Prudence, laughin^^ Every new slight I receive in 
this household I treasure up here — here ! 

E)iter Gaussen. 

Ha — so soon returned ! hast thou seen the priest ? — 
hast thou got the proofs ? — hast thou — 

gaussen 

The priest left his house this morning an hour ere I 
arrived, in company with a stranger, who, from what I 
could learn, is a seaman : but the description does not 
lit the one we look after. 

sir MAURICE. 

I see the lands of Arundel dropping from my gripe — 
but, no — no ! if I miss the proofs, I will secure the 
claimant. Giles Gaussen, this day five-and-twenty 



48 



THE SEA-CAPTAIN ; [act hi. 



years ago, didst thou not commit a crime that, if told, | 

would bring thee to the scaffold ?— Go to !— unless this ! 

Norman die, the hemp is spun that will fit thee with a ; 
halter. 

GAUSSEN. 

I would I had the boy once more in my clutches. 
Think you I have forgiven him for this gash ? Till then, 
the wenches (curse them !) did not mock at me — and— 
no matter ! But what is he to the dead man ? Thou 
told'st me it was his parents who paid me the gold to 
rid them of him. 

SIR MAURICE. 

Why, hark, I will tell thee— hush ! what's that?— get- 
aside — it is he himself— quick ! — 

[They hide amidst the trees. \ 

Enter Norman and Violet. 

VIOLET. 

What, Norman, she consents ? 

NORMAN. 

Yes, tremble not. 
My best beloved. 

VIOLET. 

I tremble lest hereafter 
Thou deem'st me over bold. 

NORMAN. 

Not bold, but trustfiil 
As love is ever ! — Nay, be soothed, and think 



SCENE I.] OR, THE BIRTHRIGHT. 49 

Of the briij^ht lands within the western main, 
Where we will build our home, whut time the seas 
A\''eary thy gaze ; — there the broad palm-tree shades 
The soft and delicate light of skies as fair 
As those that slept on Eden ; — Nature, there, 
Like a gay spendthrift in his flush of youth. 
Flings her whole treasure in the lap of Time. — 
On turfs by fairies trod, the eternal Flora 
Spreads all her blooms ; and from a lake-like sea 
\\'^ooes to her odorous haunts the western wind ! 
A\''liile, circling round and upward from the boughs, 
Golden with fruits that lure the joyous bu-ds. 
Melody, like a happy soul released. 
Hangs in the air, and from invisible plumes 
Shakes sweetness down ! — 

Enter Lady Arundel. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Ye have fix'd the hour and place 
For flight — this night ? 

NORMAN. 

Why, Lady, no ; as yet 
The blush upon her cheek at thought of flight 
Lingers like dawn in heaven, — but like the dawn 
The blush foretells the smile the heaven shall wear ! 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Trifle not — Ashdale is no dull-eyed rival ; — 
If he suspect — 

E 



50 THE SEA-CAPTAIN ; [act in. 

NORMAN {fiercely.) 
What then ? 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

So hot ! forget you 
Your word to waive all contest ? — No — that glance 
Does answer " No." — And now, fair sir — this letter 
To the Venetian goldsmith, Paolo Trezzi, 
Yields you this lady's dower ; for from these halls 
Never went bride without her portion. 

NORMAN. 

Lady, 
Ye who have dwelt upon the sordid land. 
Amidst the everlasting gloomy war 
Of Poverty with Wealth — ye cannot knoAV 
How we, the wild sons of the Ocean, mock 
At men who fret out life with care for gold. 
O ! the fierce sickness of the soul — to see 
Love bought and sold — and all the heaven-roofd 

temple 
Of God's great globe^ the money-change of Mammon ! 
I dream of love, enduring faith, a heart 
Mingled with mine — a deathless heritage 
Which I can take unsullied to the stars, 
When the Great Father calls his children home ; — 
And in the midst of this Elysian dream, 
Lo, Gold — the demon Gold ! — alas ! the creeds 
Of the false land ! — 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

And once I thought like him ! 



SCENE I] OR, THE BIRTHRIGHT. 5I 

Ah! happy Violet .'—(wore coldly) well— of this here- 
after. 

^Miat hour can boat and boatmen wait your orders ? 

NORMAN. 

The favouring moon breaks one hour ere the midni.rht 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Meet wliere the Castle chase, by the last -ate, 
Slopes to the ocean-beach — 

NORMAN. 

Ay — as I took 
That patli this morn, I saw the scathed ruins 
Of an old chapel on the spot you name ;— 
Meet me there, Violet — 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Ha— witliin that chapel ! 

NORMAN. 

Is it not holy ground ? 

LADY ARUDNEL {impatiently). 

Well, well — l)egone, 
And meet one hour ere midnight — 

VIOLET. 

Let us wait 
And hope, dear Norman — 

E 2 



52 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act in. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

" Pope," girl ! he must quit 
These halls tliis day — would you his blood ? — 

VIOLET. 

The love 
I bear thee steals so little from the earth, 
I cannot think it err because its faith 
Will not nurse fear ; — to-night, th .'n — but, alas ! 
See the sky lowers — the nights are dark — 

NORMAN. 

Nay, then, 
Streams o'er our path the Planet Saint of lovers : 
And mark this white plume with the. sparkling gem, 
Pluck'd from the turban of the Algerine 
That happy day — so thou shalt sec the token 
Gleam thro' the shadows. 

VIOLET. 

Yet— 

NORMAN. 

On board my bark 
We boast a reverend priest — Avho shall attend 
To consecrate our vows ! 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Come ! to your chamber 
I'll with thee and allay all fear ; hark ! steps ! 
Go, sir — let Ashdale find thee not ! — remember 
u.. ^vord ; and so farewell and prosper. 



SCENE i] OR, THE BIR'l'HRlcniT. 5;^ 

NORMAN. 

Ah! 

Shall we not meet an-ain ?_Go(l's blessintr on thee ! 
Wilt thou not bless me too ? 

(Kh-sfiig her hand.) 

LADY ASHDALE. 

I •' — Heaven will Mess thee. 
{Pressing his hand convulsively.) 

[Exeunt Lady Ashdale I Violet. 

NORMAN. 

Now could I linger here whole hours ; and dream— 
Of what ? — well, Falkner has return'd ere tliis. 

Enter Servant. 

SERVANT. 

A cavalier, arrived in haste, demands 
An audience, sir. 

NORMAN. 

Of me? 

SERVANT. 

Upon the instant. 
He bade me name him "Falkner." 

NORMAN. 

Falkner! Ever 
Roady in need— admit him : sure true Friendsliij) 
Is a magician — and foretels our wishes. 

Enter Falkner. 
Welcome, thrice welcome. Listen to me — bid 
Our boat attend me on the beach below, 



54 THE SEA-CAPTAIN ; [act hi. 

Close by a ruin'd chapel — where the sea 
Washes the forest's farthest verge — one hour 
Before night's last: our chaplain too is needed. 
See to it — quick ! — away ! 

FALKNER. 

Piano, friend — 
As the Italians phrase it — slow and sure. 
I've famous news ; — the priest I sought and found. 
And left him near these halls. He has the proofs 
(And will reveal them) of thy birth — thy name. 
Well ; art thou dumb ? 

NORMAN. 

O Heavens ! for this one day 
Thou mak'stlife bankrupt in its blessings! — He? 
Onslow — art sure ? — 

FALKNER. 

Some men may know their names, 
Tho' 1/ou do not. He told me his was Onslow. 

NORMAN. 

Where shall I seek him ? 

FALKNER. 

By the very chapel 
Thou spok'st of! — 

NORMAN. 

Is this destiny ? 



( 



SCENE i] OR, THE BIRTHRIGHT. 55 

FALKNER. 

And wouldst thou 
Have me still see thine orders — 

NORMAN. 

To the letter. 
The boat — the chaplain — send to the ship and bid it 
Veer round — in sight of the beach — before tlie hour. 

FALKNER. 

Explain — 

NORMAN. 

No time for words, dear Falkner — go ! 

[Ed'it Falkner. 

Enter Mistress Prudence. 

MISTRESS PRUDENCE. 

Sir Maurice ! — Where's Sir Maurice ? — Have you seen 
Sir Maurice here ? 

NORMAN. 

A fico for Sir Maurice ! 
Ah ! Mistress Prudence, when we meet again. 
Poor Captain Norman may be Captain Croesus ! 
Oh, Violet ! birth and wealth were sweet indeed. 
If they could make me worthier to possess thee. 

[Edit. 
[Sir Maurice comes forth. 

MISTRESS PRUDENCE 

Where have you hid yourself, sir ? 



56 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act in. 

SIR MAURICE. 

Hid myself! 
Am I a man to hide myself ? 

MISTRESS PRUDENCE. 

The Countess 
Requires your presence on the instant ; I 
Said you were — Ah, she comes. 

[Eoffit. 

SIR MAURICE (to Gaussen, who is stealing out). 

Keep close — keep close ! 

Enter Lady Arundel. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Dost thou not dread to look upon me ? — What ! 
I gave thee gold — gold to thy heart's content — 
To waft young Arthur to a distant land ; — 
Gold for his future lot — not bribes for murder ! 
Sold to the pirate ! — cast on the wild seas ! 
O traitor ! — traitor ! 

SIR MAURICE. 

1 knew nought of this. 
Hush ! — hush ! — Speak low! He I employed the traitor. 
Not your poor trusty knight ; — but mark me, cousin ; 
Not then your danger half so dark as now. 
Time jflies the while I speak. — Thou scarce wert gone 
When came a stranger with such news ! — Old Onslow 
At hand — he has the proofs ! — I — I can save thee. 
And I alone ! — Who is the traitor now ? 



SCENE i] OR, THE BrilTIIRIGIIT. 57 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Terror on terror crowds upon nie, like 
^^^aters above a drowning wretch ! 

SIR MAURICE. 

Be quick ! 
And, hark ! I must bribe high ! 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Get nie the proofs. 
Silence the priest, and whatsoe'er thou ask'st 
Is thine. 

SIR MAURICE. 

The farms and manor-house of Bothleigh — 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Thine — thine ! 

SIR MAURICE. 

Agreed ! — now go in peace and safety — 
Leave me to work. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Oh, Percy ! for thy sake — 
^ For thy sake this — not mine — bear witness, Heaven ! 
I will go pray. 

[Edit. 

SIR MAURICE. 

Ay, pray ! whrn weak bad women 
Gorge some huge crime, they always after it 
Nibble a bit of prayer, just to digest it! 



58 THE SEA-CAPTAIN ; [act hi. 

So gluttons cram a hecatomb of meat, 
And then correct it with a crumb of cheese. 
Come from thy lair, my jackal of the sea. 

[Gaussen comes forth. 
Fly to the chapel. Ah, thou know'st those ruins ! — 
Swoop on the grey-hair'd man thou findest there : 
Seize, and conceal, and gag him in some cave. 
Tear from him all — papers and parchments — all ! 
Bring them to me — a thousand bright broad pieces. — 
The seaman took the longer path ; — this way — 
You see the track, it halves the distance. 

GAUSSEN. 

If 

He struggle, must I — 

SIR MAURICE. 

Prate thou not of struggles ; 
I give thee orders but to seize the papers. 
Fail, and thou know'st I have thy secret ! — Win, 
And thou art rich for life — away ! 

\_Eocit Gaussen. 
At worst 
I am a thousand pounds a-year the warmer ; 
At best — why, that's to come. I know a tame. 
Patient, poor cousin — Gods, how I will plague him ! 

As he goes out enter Lord Ashdale. 
Hadst thou come sooner, thou hadst spoil'd a love- 
scene. 

ashdale, 

Wert thou its witness, then ? 



SCENE i] OR, THE BIRTHRIGHT. 59 

SIR MAURICE. 

Ay, in the corner, 
Like peeping Tom. You've been at Coventry? 

ASHDALE. 

Jest not — thou madJen'st me. 

SIR MAURICE. 

Thou'lt swear to keep 
Our counsel from thy mother ? 

ASHDALE. 

By my honour. 

SIR MAURICE. 

They fly this night — they meet one hour ere midnight 
By the okl chapel. Boat and priest await — 
She'll know liim by the jewel in his plume : 
Put one in thine — I'll sell thee one a bargain. 

ASHDALE. 

This night ! the chapel ! Oh, by earth and heaven, 
I will not lose this girl ! I thank thee, Knight. 

[Bait 

k SIR MAURICE. 

Both flies are in the web ! I know a spider 

Who shall eat both. When shall I wake an earl ? 



60 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act in. 



SCENE II. 

In the background a Gothic chapel partially in ruins ; 
— through a broken arch the sea seen at a little dis- 
tance. In fronts broken for est- ground, a small 
brook running to the sea. At the side, a small 
tower that admits to the demesnes of the Castle. 
Sunset. 

ONSLOW {in front of the chapel) . 
More than ten years have pass'd since I beheld him — 
The noble boy; — now time annuls my oath, 
And cancels all his wrongs ! Ye dismal wrecks — 
Well might the lightning scathe your bloodstain'd 

walls, 
To death and marriage consecrate alike, 
As is the tale that trembles on my lips ! 
Lo, the toad battening where the altar stood, 
But ruin spares the tomb ! So thro' the earth 
How many altars vow'd to human love 
A single tomb outlasts ! 

Enter Gaussen from the tower. 

GAUSSEN. 

What, in time ? 

Alone, too ? 

[^Rushing upon Onslow. 

Speak not, stir not, or thou diest ! 

The scrolls — the papers that thou bear'st about thee ! 

ONSLOW. 

Avaunt, I know thee, murderer ! On this spot 
The dead rise up against thee. 



SCENE II.] OR, THE BIRTHRIGHT 61 

GAUSSEN. 

Dost thou know me ? 
Then know thy doom and doomsman ! 

ONSLOW. 

Villain! off! 
[^Breaks from him and passes through the arches of 
the chapel. 

GAUSSEN {following). 
Thy blood on thine own head ! 

Enter Norman. 

NORMAN. 

A human cry ! 
Ha ! ruffian, — ^hold I 

[Rushes through the arches. 

Re-enter Gaussen disarmed. 

GAUSSEN. 

Disarm'd ! my hand is palsied ! 

[Norman appears as in pursuit — Gaussen, creeping 
along the ruins, enters the tower unperceived. 

NORMAN. 

Is it a fiend, that earth should swallow ? 

ONSLOW (within^ groaning). 

Oh! 
[Norman re-enters the Chapel 
GAUSSEN (from the tower). 
We meet again ! — 

Enter Norman, bearing Onslow, wounded. 



62 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act ni. 

ONSLOW. 

Ah ! life is fading fast ! — 
Let me look on thee — once more I hehold thee, 
And can depart in peace ! — 

NORMAN. 

Hush — do not speak ! — 

ONSLOW. 

Nay, words grow few. I bade thee meet me here ; 
Yonder where Murder found me — on this day 
Twenty and five years back — thy father — 



NORMAN. 



Father ! 



Say on ! my father ? 



ONSLOW. 

Died, most foully murder'd 

NORMAN. 

Blood — blood for blood — the murderer — name him ! 

ONSLOW. 

Listen. — 
There was a page, fair, gentle, brave, but lowborn ; — 
The daughter of the lordly House he served 
Saw him and loved : — they wed in stealth ; — these hands 
Join'd them together in yon holy walls ; 
They met in secret. I — I — my voice fails me ! 
[Norman ^oe* to the brook, brings water in the hollow 
of his hand, and sprinkles the face of the old man. 



SCENE II.] OR, THE RIRTHRICHT. 63 

ONSLOW. 

Tlu' father learn'd the love — not wedlock — deeni'd 
His child dishonour'd. — On this spot the lovers 
Met, ^vitll design to fly. I loved the youth — 
His foster-sire — I was to share their flight. — 

NORMAN. 

Speak on — speak on. 

ONSLOW. 

'Twas night — a fearful night — 
Lightning and storm ! — lliey met — and murderous 

hands 
Seized on thy father — tlragg'd him from her breast ! — 
Oh ! — that wild shriek — I hear it still ! — he died 
By the same wretch that is my murderer now. 

NORMAN. 

Thy murderer now ? O thanks, revealing Heaven ! 
One death, one deed — one arm avenges both I 

ONSLOW. 

Died in these arms — three flagstones from the altar — 
Near the lone tomb where the first Baron sleeps ; — 
Still mark the gore-stains where his bones are buried. 

NORMAN. 

Oh ! — horror — horror ! 

ONSLOW. 

Three nights thence thy mother 
Gave birth to thee ; — a kinsman, whose cold heart 
Promise of gold had soften'd to her grief, 
Bore to my home the babe ! 



64 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act m. 

NORMAN. 

And she, my mother ? 
Does she live still ? — my mother ? 

. ONSLOW. 

She survived — 
Forced to a lordlier husband's arms. The tale 
Of the sad past unknown ! 

NORMAN. 

It was her face 
Mine infant eyes beheld ? — 

ONSLOW. 

In stealth a wife ; 
In stealth a mother — yes ! — But with new ties 
Came new affections. — To the second nuptials 
A second son was born. — She loved him well ; 
Better than thee — than her own soul. 

NORMAN. 

Poor mother ! — 

ONSLOW. 

But few words more. — I — I — Oh — 

NORMAN. 

Breathe less loud, 
My soul is in my ears. 

ONSLOW. 

Too moved by pity — 
Too sway'd by fear — lest they should rend thee from me, 



SCENE II.] OR, THE BIKTlIKKillT. (55 

1 took ji solemn oatli to veil the secret — 

Conceal thy rights — while lived her sire, and he, 

Her second lord ; and thus allow'd tiiy youth 

To quit my roof: — they died, — the sire and husband, — 

Some two years since ; — thou still afar. I sought 

Thy motiier, and lier heart was marble ; — Oh I 

Here — here (f^ives papers). Go, seek thy shelter in 

the law ; 
But shun yon towers ! — thy mother — 

NORMAN. 

But one word ! 
My mother's name ! — 

ONSLOW {pointing to papers). 
There ! 
{^Raises himself to his feet with a sudden effort. 

Hear my last words, Heaven ! 
Protect the wrong'd ! — upon this bead I lay 
An old man's blessing — Now, farewell! 

IDies. 

NORMAN. 

Stay — stay 
Thy flight, thou gentlest spirit ! Dumb ! He breathes 

not ! 
Dead — dead — my second sire ! O hell-l»orn deed ! 
Could not these white hairs plead for thee ? 

— Revenge ! 
Earth give no shelter to the man of blood I 
Conduct his feet, Ordainer of all doom. 
To retributive slaughter ; and vouchsafe 

F 

I 



66 THE SEA-CAPTAIN ; [act hi. 

This arm thine instrument ! Mine eyes deceived me, 
Or the red beam, streaking the vauhed gloom, 

Shovv'd me the lace of Well ! the Heavens are just, 

And we shall meet again ! — Farewell, farewell ! 

Heaven gains a saint in thee ! — JMy mother lives ! 

What tho' she has another child to love ? 

Is not a mother's heart a mighty space. 

Embracing all her children ? Of that realm 

How little will content me ! — She will fold 

Her arms around me, and from out her breast 

The eyes that look to hers shall melt away 

With passionate tears the past and all its sorrows ! 

What — "what ! her son — her son ! Mysterious Nature, 

At the first glance I loved her ! Wealth, lands, titles, 

A name that glitters, like a star, amidst 

The galaxy of England's loftiest born ! 

O Violet — O my bride — and O my mother ! 

Out from my heart henceforth each low desire, 

Each meaner hope my wilder youth conceived ! 

Be my soul instinct with such glorious thoughts 

As, springing to great deeds, shall leave my land 

A bright heroic lesson of the things 

In which true nobleness endures for ever ! 

And while I told my woes she wept, she did ! 

'Tis her sweet writing ! bless her ! See, she calls me 

Arthur, and child {kissing the papers), and child, her 

precious one. 
Her hope, her darling ! ]Mother — my own mother! 

[Opens the papers — Scene closes. 

END OF ACT III. 



^lENEi] OR, THE UlinnllKUIT 



67 



ACT IV. 
SCENE I. 

77ie haU in the Castle of ArundcL—Ni^ht—liirhts. 
Sir Maurice — Gaussex. 

SIR MAURICE. 

Tliou hast not £:ot the pai)ers ; and thou hast com- 
iiitted a murder; and, uliat is worse, thou hast slain 
the wrong man ! 

GAUSSEX. 
But 

SIR MAURICE. 

But me no buts : thou hast ruined me. Stand 
back, and k-t me think. {Aside.) The heir has the 
proofs— clear ! He will not come back to this house, 
the very den of his unnatural foe— clear ! He will seek 
the law for redress-^lear, clear ! But he loves Violet. 
He will keep jiis assignation; carry away the -irl ; and 
then of}- to London, to as.sert his riglits :— all this is 
clear as noon-day ! Gaussen, thou ^canst repair all. 
The sea-captain will be at the ruhis to-night— eleven 
of the clock— to be married in the chapel I)y stealth. 

GAUSSEN. 

I overheard all that in the gardens {aside— .mii 
more too perhaps), and am already prepared. IMy bold 
fellows shall seize priest and boatmen, and I will await 



the bridegroom 



f2 



68 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act iv. 

SIR MAURICE. 

And that thy cutlass may not fail thee this time, 1 
will brace thy hand by refreshing thy memory. Five- 
and-twenty years ago — thou then but a young fellow, 
caught in thy first desperate piracy on the high seas — 
wert placed in the dungeons of this castle, in order to 
be marched off the next day to the county gaol, with a 
rope for thy journey's end. Thou wert released that 
night : at day-break thou wert on the merry waves again, 
with a sack of pistoles in thy pouch. What was the 
price of thy life and liberty ? 

GAUSSEN. 

The blood of a man whom the stern old Lord hade 
me strike as his worst foe. 

SIR MAURICE. 

Right ! and the son of that man is tiie boy thou didst 
cast on the seas ! Tliou sayest that Onslow recognised 
thee. Be sure the dying man told the son in what face 
to look for his father's murderer. If thou make not 
sure work to-night, thou art meat for the crows ! 

GAUSSEN. 

Trust me. I will fasten to him as a panther on the 
stag ! 

■ SIR MAURICE. 

And — stand back ! — let me think ! — let me think! 
I see it ! — I see ! " Thou shalt nt)t only do the deed, but 
thou shalt find another to bear the blame ! This crack- 
brain, Ashdale, the young Lord, will be on the spot. He 



SCENE I.] OK, THE BIKTIIRKJUT (j9 

loves the girl Noniiiin would wed : tliey will have 
words, ])erhcii.s blows, lie on the watch with thv Tel- 
lows — ten, twenty of them : rush in, under pretence of 
separating— stab— stab both ! Dead men tell no tales : 
and ye and your men can bear witness that they fell 
l>y each other's hands! 

GAUSSEN. 

'Tis a death more than I bargained for. The price ? 

SIK IMAUHICE. 

Shall be doubled — two thousand pieces ! 

GAUSSEN. 

Touch hands. Bring five hundred to-night— by the old 
chapel— for my men. I will come for the rest to thine 
own house to-morrow eve at dusk. 

SIR MAURICE. 

Five hundred to-night ! Five hundred, Bully Gaussen, 
beforehand! Premiums are an abomination in law- 
usury, rank usury ! 

GAUSSEN. 

I must have them : my men want pay, and are half 
mutinous as it is. Blood and wounds, old knight ! this 
is sharp work you set them at^to net a covy ol' sailors, 
who will fight like devils, and to stab a lord— to say 
nothing of the other man— that's my quarrel— five hun- 
dred pieces, or I hoist sail, and you may catch the sailors 
and .<tab the Lord for yourself 

SIR MAURICE {groanhifr). 
Five hundred little, pretty, smiling, golden-faced 



70 THE SEA-CAPTAIN ; [act iv. 

cherubim : 'tis a second Massacre of the Innocents ! 
Well, thou shalt have them {aside — and the Countess 
must repay me). Before eleven I will be with thee: 
l)ut you will smite both — l)oth the Lord and the Captain : 
no time for death-bed explanations. 

GAUSSEN. 

They shall never hear the bell toll midnight ! 

[Exit. 

SIR MAURICE. 

Then, ere matins, I shall be Baron Ashdale and 
heir of Arundel. The lordship and lands of Ashdale 
are so settled that they go at once to the male heir. 
Yes, I can trust this man to do the deed ! but can I 
trust him after it ? A pretty acquaintance Giles 
Gaussen for a great lord ! — Well, time enough to be 
rid of him. 

ASHDALE (speaking without). 

Yes — the dun and sorrell. 

Enter Lord Ashdale. 

SIR MAURICE. 

Hast thou prepared thy plans, my Hotspur ? — 

ASHDALE. 

Yes ; 
My steeds and grooms will wait me in the forest : 
And, for the rest, — I wear my father's sword. 

SIR MAURICE. 



Oh, I could hug thee ! By my golden spurs, 
1 doat on valour ! — Thou wilt win the maid, 



I 



SCENE I.] Oil, Tin: mRTIlRHIllT. 71 

1 know tludi wilt. — Faitli, how a Irowii becomes tiice ! 
Vet lie's no carpet warrior — tliou must use 
All tliy atltlress ! — 

ASIIDALK. 

Thou iieetl'st not urj^e me to it. 

SIR MAURICE. 

(iood nii:^ht, and luck to thee. {Aside.) Now, now I 

have him ! 
I feel myself a lord already ! — lights there ! 

Enter Servant. 

Light me, good knave ; there is a pistole for thee. 
{AtiUle) A great man should be generous. — 'Bye, my 

Hector (Jiums a tune). 
Is my state-coach below ? — Oh, I forgot. \_Exit. 

LORD ASHDALE (/ookhig after him in great surprise). 

Toucli'd, crazed ! — the old kniglit has so starved his 

body, 
The brains have taken fright, and given him warning. 
Ha, ha ! adventure is the gale to love ; 
And stratagem the salt of its tide ! ha, lia ! 
I think I never loved this maid so well 
As now, twixt fear of loss and hope of triumph. 

Enter Lady Arundel. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Percy — 

ASHDALE. 

Well, madam, 1 am press'd — 



72 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act iv. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Oh, Percy ! 
Speak kindly, Percy ! 

, ASHDALE. 

Mother, if my mood 
Be chafed to-day, forgive it ! — shall I speak ? 
Your sudden care for this ignoble stranger, 
Coupled with memory of wild words your lips 
Oftimes let fall — your penances and fasts — 
Your midnight vigils — your habitual gloom ; — 
Weaving all this, to form a likelihood. 
Why, harsher judgment than your son's, my mother. 
Might half suspect — 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Speak on, sir — 

ASHDALE. 

That your past 
Was darken'd by some unatoned-for sin, 
Whose veil this stranger's hand had lifted. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Percy, 
Your words are daggers — if the unstrung brain 
At times gives discord-^if the insane phantoms 
That haunt all hearts vex'd by the storms of life — 
(And / have sufFer'd, Percy, sadly suifer'd) — 
Do mock and gibber in my dreary path — 
'Tis thine to pity, to forbear, to soothe. 
Never to doubt. AVhere should that angel men 



SCENE I. ] Oil, THE BIRTHRIGHT. 73 

Call *• Charity" abide — but in the hearts 
Ol" our own cliildreu ? 

ASH DALE. 

Mother — oh, forgive me ! 
If the unquiet, cavilling spirit born 
^\^ithiu me, of the race that, like tiie ermine, 
AVould pine to deatii when sullied by one stain, 
Makes me seem harsh — formve me ! 

LADY ARUNDEL {(ipproaclihig Mm). 

Never know- 
Till I am dead how deeply 1 have loved thee ! 
Thy fiither — tho' an earl in rank — and near 
To the royal house in blood and martial fame — 
Had wed before — had other sons — on me 
Alone depends thy heritage — from me 
Thy lordship and thy fortunes. 

ASHDALE. 

True, what then ? 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

You have loved pomp and state ; and 1 have pinch 'd 
To feed the lavish wants of your wild youth — 
Have I not, Percy ? 

ASHDALE. 

You have been to me 
Ever most bounteous, mother. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Yet, in truth, 
U You prize too much the outward show of things. 



74 THE SEA-CAPTAIN ; [act iv. 

Could you not bear — for you have youth and health, 
Beauty and strength — the golden wealth of Nature : — 
Could you not bear descent from that vain height 
Of fortune, where poor Vanity builds towers 
The heart inhabits not — to live less proud — 
To feast less gorgeously — to curb thy wants 
Within the state — not of the heir to earls, 
But of a simple gentleman, whose station 
Lies in his worth and valour ? — Could you ? 

ASHDALE. 

Never ! 
Such as I am, my sire and you have made me, — 
Ambitious, haughty, prodigal ! — my hopes 
A part of my very life ! If I could fall 
From my high state, it were as Romans fell — 
On their sword's point. Why is your cheek so hueless ? 
Why daunt yourself with air-drawn phantasies ? 
Who can deprive me of mine heritage ? 
The titles of the antique seignory — 
That will be mine, in trust for sons unborn, 
When time (from this day may the date be far !) 
Transfers the ancestral coronal that gems 
Thy stately brows to no unworthy heir ? 

LADY ARUNDEL {aaide). 

My proud soul speaks in his, my lion boy ! 

Come shame — come crime — come death and doom 

hereafter — 
I'll know no son but him ! 



i 



CENE i] OR, Tin: lUUTHUKillT. 75 

K liter StTvant. 
SERVANT. 



JMost lioiiourd iiiiulam, 
,'ulit'r you ciiteitaiiie 
Is here. 



The cavalit'i- you ciiteitaiiitMl this iiiuniin<r 



LADY AH UN DEL. 

I will not see him ! 

Enter Norman. 

NORMAN. 

Gracious lady ! 
My business — grant nie but your private ear — 
W'\\\ plead for my intrusion. 

LADY ARUNDEL {au'lde) . 

All else fails ! 
I\Iy own stern heart support me! 



NORiMAN (aside). 



How like strangers 
'i'hey look upon \iw, both, the while I yearn 
To rush into their arms ! 

ASHDALE. 

Why parley Avifk him? 
\y\w is he .'—What ? 

LADY ASHWWrP. 

Hush! — I atuii., }(«::, h\v , 
IJe seated — Aslidalc, leave us. 

[Norman placea his cloak and hut on a tahle 
and drawn a seat near to Lady Arundel. 



ki_. 



76 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act iv. 

ASH D A L E {carelessly) . 

By my troth, 
I have no wish to mar good company. 
Fair sir, I owe you back disdainful words 
Repaid you later. 

NORMAN (aside). 

I love that warm spirit ! — 
'Twas mine at his age — my dear brother ! 

ASHDALE {going to the table and eocchanging the 

cloak and hat?). 

Ho ! 
The signal plume — a fair exchange, — so please you. 
The cloak too. Tarry now as long as lists you ; 
I'll be your likeness elsewhere. 

[^Eocit. 

NORMAN. 

How to break it — 
And not to give overwrought joy the shock 

Of grief — 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

I listen, sir. 

NORMAN (with great emotion) . 
You love your son ? 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Better than life, I love him ! 



SCENE I. ] OR, THE niRTHRKillT. 77 

NORMAN. 

Have you nut 
Another son — a tirst-boin ? 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Sir! 

NORMAN. 

A son 

On ^vllonl those eyes d\velt first, \vhose infant cry 

Struck first on that divine and holy chord, 

In tlie deep heart of woman, whicli awakes 

All nature's tenderest music ? Turn not from me. 

r know the secret of thy mournful life. 

^^'^ill it displease thee — will it — to believe 

That son is living still ? 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

How, sir — such licence ? 
1 will not brook it ! 

\_ Rises to fro. 

NORMAN. 

No, thou wilt not leave me ! 
I say, thou wilt not leave me! On uiy knees, 
I say thou shalf not leave me ! 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Loose thine hold. 
Or I will call my menials, to chastise 
This most unmanner'd freedom ! 



7S THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act iv. 

NORMAN. 

Mother, mother ! 
I am thy son — thine Artliur — thine own child ! 
Do you deny yom* own ? 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

I have no son, 
Save Percy Ashdale ! 

NORMAN. 

Do not — do not hear her, 
Thou everlasting and all-righteous Judge ! 
Thou, who, amidst the seraph hosts of heaven. 
Dost take no holier name than that of " Father !" 
Hush, hush ! Behold these proofs — the deed of marriage ! 
The attesting oaths of them who witness'd, and 
Of him who sanctified, thy nuptial vow ! 
Behohl these letters ! — see, the words are still 
By years unfaded ! — to my sire, your lover ! 
Read how you loved him then. By all that love — 
Yea, by himself, the wrong'd and nmrder'd one, 
Who hears thee now above — by these, my mother. 
Do not reject thy son ! 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

The worst is past. 

(Re-seats herself. 
And were this so — own that 1 had a son — 
What proof that you are he ? 

NORMAN. 

What proof ? There, there! 
In your own heart — your eyes — that dare not face me ; 



I 



SCENE I.] OR. THE HlllTnillGHT 7(j 

Your triMiiMiui,' limbs — tlicn' — there my witness! N;iture 
15i:iiH'lies your cheek, iiiid hejives your struirirliuir breast ! 
Thou kiiow'st I am thy son ! 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Oh, while he speaks, 
My courage melts away ! And yet, my Percy, 
JMy son, whose years blossomd l)eneath my eyes — 
All Jits hopes blasted ! No, no! 

NORMAN. 

See — you falter! 
Ah 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Sir, if you, a stranger till this day. 
Have, by suborning most unworthy spies, 
Glean'd from the tragic tale of my gone life 
Some hints to build this wild and monstrous fable. 
Go, seek the laws to weave them into shape 
More cunning and less airy. Quit my presence ! 

NORMAN. 

I will not ! 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

W\\\ not ? Ho, there ! 

NORMAN. 

Call your hirelings; 
And let them hear me ! 

\^Go(;s to the hearth. 
In these halls — upon 
I he sacred hearth-stone of my sires — beneath 



80 



THE SEA-CAPTAIN ; [act iv. 



Their knightly scutcheon — and before their forms, 

Which, from the ghostly canvass, I invoke 

To hail their son— I take my stand ! I claim 

My rights ! They come— your menials I bid them thrust 

From his own hearth the heir of Arundel ! 

Enter Servants. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Seize on 1— No ! no !— My father's lordly mien 
Is his ! / dare not I 

FIRST SERVANT. 

Did you summon us, 
My gracious lady? 

NORMAN. 

Yea ! she summon'd ! Now, 
Lady of Arundel, your mandates ! 

LADY ARUNDEL (sinking into a seat) . 

Leave us ; 

We do not nt^ed you now ! 

[Exeunt Servants. 

LADY ARUNDEL (rising, and hastily/ approaching). 

Oh, Arthur ! — son ! — 
If so you be — have mercy ! 

NORMAN. 

Do not kneel — 
No, do not kneel — that, m?/ place ! 



SCENE I. ] OR, THE niRTHRIGHT. 81 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Listen to me. 
Grant that you are my ^^on — the unhappy pledge 
Of a most mournful nuptials : — orant that I, 
Scarce on the verge when child-born fancy glides 
Into the dreaming youth, misplaced my heart — 
Forgot the duties which the noble owe 
The past and future : — that a deed was done 
Which, told, would l)lacken with a murderer's crime 
My father's memory — stain thy mother's name — 
Bid the hot blush, rank in the vulgar eye, 
Blister my cheek, and gnaw into my heart : — 
(irant this — and you, my son! will you return 
The life I gave, for that, more vile than death, 
The everlasting shame ? Now, speak ! 



NORMAN. 



Go on I 



Go on ! I cannot speak ! 



LADY ARUNDEL. 

Heaven witness for me, 
With what reluctant and remorseful soul. 
Alter what threats endured and horrors done, 
I yielded to my ruthless father's will, 
j And with false lips profaned a second vow ! 
I had a child ! I was a mother! true: 
But did I dare to dwell upon that thought ? 
In darkness and in secret — if I sought 
The couch it hallow'd — flid not my stej)s creep 
Fearful and shuddering as the tread of crime, 



82 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act iv. 

Which starts at its own shadow ? With that son 
Were woven, not the proud, self-glorying joys 
Which mothers know ; but memory, shame, the dread 
And agony of those who live between 
Evil and its detection. Yet I loved thee — 
I loved thee once ! 

NORMAN. 

I knew it — Heaven, I knew it ! 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

I loved thee till another son was born — 

One who, amidst the sad and desolate world, 

Seem'd sent from Heaven by Mercy. Think, thou wert 

Alien — afar — seen rarely — on strange love 

Leaning for life ; — but this thrice-precious one 

Smiled to my eyes — drew being from my breast — 

Slept in my arms ; — the very tears I shed 

Above my treasure were to men and angels 

Alike such holy sweetness ! — food, health, life. 

It clung to me for all ! — mother and child, 

Each was the all to each ! 

NORMAN. 

I am not jealous — 
I weep with thee, my mother — see, I weep ! 
Oh, so much loA^e, and has it nought to spare ? 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

My boy grew up — my Percy. Looking on him, 
Men prized his mother more. So fair and stately, 



SCENE I. ] OR, Tni: niuTHuuniT. 

And the u'orld deeniM to such bright hopes the heir. 
I <lul not love thee fhen—kn-, like a cloud. 
Thy dark thou^^rht hung between Jiini and the future. 
And so — 

NORMAN. 

Thou didst not— O the unnatural horror !— 
Thou didst not — 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

J^ooni thee to the pirate ?— No 
No— not so ruthless. Arthur. But desi-n'd 
To rear thee up in iornorance of thy rights— 
A crinie-'tis punisli'd. So, my tale Ts done 
Reclaim thy rights— on me and on my son 
Avenge thy father's wrongs and thine ;-I ask not 
Mercy from thee— and from the hated earth 
I pass for ever to the touib, uhich hath 
Even for shame a shelter ! 

NORMAN. 

Oh, mv mother ' 
Vou do not k„o,v tl,e hea.t you.\vor,Is !.»•« pierced - 
'~'~"'y son— thine Arthur—/ iivenge ' 
Never on thee. Live l,a,,,,y_|ove my brother- 
Forget tl,at I was horn. Here, here-these proofs- 
rhese-,he,se {giring the paper.). Oh, see yo„ „ here 

the words are blister'd 
«'ith n,y hot tears ' I „.ep,_it „,,, ,■„ -, . 

.' not think onands.ol/an,e, of hirthright- 

''.d ut think these arn,s should clasp a :,other! 
No» they are worthless-take then>-you can deen. not 

g2 



83 



84 



THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act iv. 



How in my orphan youth my lonely heart 

Pined for the love you will not give me ! — Mother, 

Put but thine arms around me — let me feel 

Thy kisses on my brow ; — but once — but once ! 

Let me remember in the years to come 

That I have lived to say " A mother bless'd me!" 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Oh, could I speak — could I embrace him — all 
My heart would gush forth in one passionate burst. 
And I should bid him stay ; and— Percy, Percy, 
My love for thee has made me less than human ! 

NORMAN. 

She turns away — she will not bless the outcast ! 
She trembles with a fear that I should shame her ! 
Fjireweil— farewell for ever ! Peace be with thee— 
Heaven soothe thy griefs, and make the happy son 
Thou lovest so well the source of every solace. 
For me (since it will please thee so to deem), 
Think I am in my grave ! — for never more, 
Save in thy dreams, slialt thou behold me !— JMother, 
For the last tiijie I call thee so ! — I — I 
Cannot speak 1iioj-e— I — 

.•I [Rusheafrom the room. 

w 
LADY ARUNDEL. 

Arthur ! O, my son ! 
Come back, comer back, my son ! — my blessed son ! 

[^Falls by the threshold. 

END OF ACT IV. 



SCENE i] OR, THK IJlllTllKKilir. 85 



ACT V. 

SCENE I. 

The Hall 'm the Caatle of Arundel, as in the laat 

Scene. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Gone — gone ! — iind here he stood, and bless'd the mother 
Who did not bless her son ! — All, Heaven forgive me ! 
These are the deeds in which I placed my safety. 
Now won and worthless ! — Oh, how human hearts 
Do feed on fire, till, when the flame is slaked 
Ashes alone are left ! 

Enter Sir Maurice. — {Lady Arundel conceals the 

papers.^ 

SIR MAURICE. 

W«dl, cousin, fear not: 
All is arranged. — Ere cockcrow thou shalt he 
Free of thy terrors ! — old Sir Maurice still 
Is good for something, eh? 

LADY ARl NDEl!. 

What guihy thought 
Speaks in thy ominous smile? 

SIR MAURICE. • 

If thus you wrong me 
I'm mute; — and yet thou know'st I live to serve thee. 



86 THE SEA-CAPTAIN ; [act v. 

I can secure thee all — glad days — calm ni-ghts : 
But iu this world there are such covetous knaves. 
That, la you now, — I am ashamed to tell thee — 
Tlie rogue 1 have jiiired wants two thousand pieces 
This very night to — 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Silence ! — I abhor 
Thy crooked counsels — thy rapacious guile : — 
I've been too long benighted, and pursued 
Meteors for guides ! Now the cloud rolls away, 
And on my terror breaks the morning star. 
I'll nought of thee ! 

SIR MAURICE. 

Thou wilt not ! 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Miser, no ! 
Thy black and hideous guilt, out-darkening mine. 
Hud w ell nigh drowned my soul beneath a sea 
Deeper than that to which thy trait'rous craft 
Consign'd my first-born ! Quit these halls for ever. 
And starve beside the chests whose every coin 
At the Last Day shall in the Court of Heaven 
Witness against thee, Judas ! 

SIR MAURICE. 

Miser ! Judas ! 
I thank thee — no, to-morrow I will thank thee. 
This crowns the cup of insult ! You and yours. 
Your duU-sould father, and your lowborn lover — 



I 



SCENE I. ] OR, THE HIRTHKKJIIT. 87 

Your coxcomb son — yiuir veriest varlet, clown 
To the gross scullion, fattening on your oftal — 
All — all have broke their idiot jests on me — 
Me, but lor you, the Lord of Arundel ! 
Yet all, at need, eouhl fawn on old Sir Maurice — 
Eke from his mts their poverty of brain — 

And plague upon this wrath ! — thou art not worth it ! 

1 leave these halls. When next we meet, proud dame. 
Thy crest may be less lofty ! Miser ! Judas ! 

[E^it. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Tliere's meaning in this frontless insolence : 

" When next we meet," said he ; " Wlien next Ave 

meet !" 
Broods he some new and deadlier mischief? — Ha ! 
Time wanes — Within there ! — 

Enter Servant. 

What's the hour ? 



SERVANT. 



The chime 



Just told the quarter. Madam ! 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Ah ! so late ? 
Where is my son. Lord Ashdale ? 

SERVANT. 

Left the castle 
Sime minutes since : his grooms and steeds preceded. 



88 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act v. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Whither ?— 

SERVANT. 

I know not, madam, but he bade me 
Say, that he might return not ere the morning. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

The morning ! — now the danger glares upon me. 
He has whisper'd Percy of the lovers' flight ; 
And they will meet — tlie brotiiers — meet as foes ! 
Quick — torches — quick — let every menial arm ! 
Quick — follow — lights here ! — Heaven avert this woe — 
Forgive the mother — Save, oh, save the sons ! 



SCENE H. 

The exterior of a ruined Chapel — the Tower of the 
Chapel, with large Gothic doors, for the background. 

Night — the stage darkened. 

Gaussen and Two Pirates. 

GAUSSEN. 

All our men posted ? — 

1st pirate. 
Ay, my Captain ;-^Luke, 



SCENE II.] OR, TllH BllirUKKJHT. y9 

^\'itli ten stout fellows, hid Iteiieath the rock, 
^\'ill seize the boatmen when they run ashore. 

GAUSSEN. 

(n)()(l. 

Enter Luke. 

LUKE. 

» We have nabb'd the roijues — four sailors and 
A jolly cliaplain — only one, their leach.'r, 
Cut his way throuirh, and fled ! 

GAUSSEN. 

A murrain on him I 
It matters not— all done ere he can peach ! 

Enter Sir Maurice. 

SIR MAURICE. 

That woman's taunts put me beside my temper ; 
But I am on the threshold of my greatness. 
Sir Maurice Beevor shall be merged to-morrow 
Into Lord Ashdale ; — like a drop of water 
Into a glass of aqua vitae. 



GAUSSEN, 



Vou have the monies ? 



Well, Knight ! 



SIR MAURICE (giving a fxig). 

Little dears ! you see them 
Tuck'd up in bed and fast asleep — my heart aciies 



90 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act v. 

That such a happy and united family 

Should be dispersed upon the world, and never 

Come home again ! — Poor things ! — Now, prithee man, 

Don't be so rough with them ! — 

GAUSSEN. 

Since last we met 
My scouts inform me that the dogs of law 
Are on my track. — 'Twere best Avhen all is done 
To put to sea. 

SIR MAURICE. 

Right, right. 

GAUSSEN. 

So bring the rest 
Of the gold to-night ; — one half-hour hence I reckon 
My part o' the compact will be sign'd and seal'd. 

SIR MAURICE. 

So soon ? — 'Gad how impatient, fierce, and fiery 
My monies make him ! Well, it shall be so ; 
I'll bring the rest — 

GAUSSEN. 

Stay ; when I've slain this Norman, 
The pa])ers on him — 

SIR MAURICE. 

Thou wilt give to me — 
'Tis in the bargain. 

GAUSSEN. 

What, Knight, if I took them 
To tlie great Countess, yonder? — 



scENEii.] OR, THE BlllTHRKiHT. (Jl 

SIR MAURICE. 

To the countess, 
Villain ! — I would — I would — (How ])lack he looks ! 
I'd best he civil) — I would think it, Giles, 
Not ([uite the conduct that becomes an honest, 
Kind-hearted friend, like you. — 

GAUSSEN. 

(Aside) As I suspected : 
The Dame of Arundel's concerned in this. 
I'll see what's in these papers ere I give them 
To the <dd hunks. {Aloud) You may depend upon 

me — 
Briuij but the orold in time. Good ni<rht. 

SIR MAURICE. 

r faith, 
'I'he pleasantest thing the rogue has said. — Good night! 
li(X>k sharp ! remember both must be despatch'd. 
A thousand each ! — W'^hat shall I be to-morrow ? 

[Eojtt. 

GAUSSEN. 

Both ! — baugh ! what feud have 1 with the young Lord, 
Tliat he should die to please thee ? — Each a tliousand ! 
\\'hy, when thou l)ring'st two thousand to my lair, 
Thiuk'st thou one thousand shall go hack again ? 
The Lord shall live : — but for the other — he 
\Mio set this mark upon my brow — the son 
Of the dead man — one blow vvi])es off old scores. 
And saves new debts. None but myself must know 
^^'llat worth there may be in those papers ! — Yet 



92 THE SEA-CAPTAIN i [act v. 

The Jad is cunning with his weapon. — Well, 

He shall not draw it ! — So, — an ambush ! — Luke, 

Lend nie thy cutlass, — I lost mine to-day, 

And will not trust to my knife alone — the lanthorn ! — : 

Watch for the galhmt with the sparkling plume 

And snow-white cloak, a damsel on his arm ; — 

Tell him the priest awaits him in the chapel. 

His boatmen in the creek below — and vanish, 

Tliat message said. Keep i' the dark, nor let him 

Note a strange face — thy hat and cloak good mufflers. 

LUKE. 

I'm an old hand — ne'er fear ! , 

GAUSSEN. 

And if another. 
Of gayer dress, the young Lord, come this way. 
Do Mm no harm — but seize ; his life will be 
Well worth the ransoming. Now for this scar 
Will I have vengeance — where the father fell 
Shall the son bleed. 

\_Exit within the chapel. 

LUKE. 

Old Mother Moon is lazy. 
Still in her nightcap ! — Dark and husli'd ; but men 
Who live 'twixt knife and halter have sharp senses — 
The owl's eye and the hare's ear. Hist ! — what's that ? 
A hinge creaks yonder — ah ! a footfall ! 



SCENE II.] OR, THE RFRTIIRICHT. 93 

Enter Lord Ashdale {in Norman's hat and cloak) 

and Violet. 

VIOLET. 

Speak ! 
The silence and tlie darkness eliill nie. 

ASHDALE. 

Dearest, 
No cause lor lear ! 

VIOLET. 

Thy voice sounds sharp and strange. 
Ah, my heart fails me ! 

ASHDALE {aside). 

Yet, I'd swear her Norman 
\\'^oul(l have said just what I did. 

LUKE. 

In tlie chapel 
The priest awaits — your boatmen in the creek 
Behind yon rock. 

ASHDALE. 

Aha ! the priest — stay, fellow, — 
The priest — the cha])el ? — marriage, eh ? 

LUKE. 

What else, sir ? 

ASHDALE. 

AMiat light in the chapel ? 



94 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act v. 

LUKE. 

Only a (lark lanthorn. 

[Ejcit. 

ASHDALE. 

All favours — this is luckier than I hoped for ! 

I see ! — the marriage first — then flight ! Decorous 

Sweet one, within ! — hush ! — come ! 



f 



VIOLET. 

Mine ear does mock me ; 
But terror plays sad tricks with the senses ! Norman, 
INIy frame may tremble, but my heart is brave — 
For tJiut can never doubt thee. 

[Eoceunt Ashdale and Violet through the 
doors of the chapel. 

Enter Falkner {his sword drawn). 

FALKNER (iti a wMsper). 

Norman ! — Captain ! 
I dare not call aloud. — None here ? — these rascals — 
Have they laid hands on Norman, too? Who comes ? 

Enter Norman. 

NORMAN. 

I see her not. What, Violet ? 

FALKNER. 

Art thou Norman ? 



NORMAN. 



Falkner 



stENEii] OR, TiiR inirnnuciiiT. 95 

FALKNER. 

Some villany is in the wind ! 
Scarce hiiided, when a rude hand swept upon us ; 
Thy hoatmen seized — the priest too ; — I alone, 
With my good sword, open'd a path for flight, 
And, hurrying to thee with the news — 

[^J shrink in thin the chapel. 

NORMAN. 

That voice ! — 
[Exit Norman within the chapel. 

FALKNER. 

More sport ! — egad, I feel at home to-night ! 

[Edit Falkner after Norman. 

Enter Luke. 

LUKE. 

Vs^\\o spoke ? — Avast there ! — Sure I heard — 

Enter Lady Arundel and Servants, hearing torches, 

from the cave. 

lady ARUNDEL. 

Look round ! 
They must he here — Violet has left the castle. 
It is the hour ! — Who skulks there 1 — seize him ! 

[Servants seize Luke. 



96 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act. v. 

Enter Violet from the chapel, and falla at Lady 

Arundel's /e^/. 

VIOLET. 

Save me ! 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Girl, girl — what means this ? — where is he — my — Nor- 
man ? 

violet. 

Stir not — the spot is desecrate. JMethinks 
Witchcraft and Murder reign there ! — 

lady ARUNDEL. 

Ha ! — I dare not 
Set foot beyond that threshold. 

violet. 

By mine honour — 
Tho' thou wilt mock me — I do think to have seen 
Two Normans by the altar ! — 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

His dead father 
Has left his grave ! 

VIOLET. 

We crept through the dim aisles : 
Sudden, a light — a form — a gleaming knife — 
I shriek'd, and clung upon the murderous arm — 
When, lo ! — a second Norman : — on the floor 
This lay — and there — avenging, stern, unearthly — 
The other rose, gigantic, thro' the darkness ! 



scENF. II.] OR, THE RIRTHRKJIIT 97 

FIRST SERVANT. 

Ilt'lj) to our huly ! — 

LADY AKUNDKL {wiivhi^ him hack) . 

Sirs, 1 need ye not. 
Fall back ! — what more ? 

VIOLET. 

I know no more — I fled, 
Darkling and blind with supernatural horror. 
Along the dismal aisles. — 

(^After a pause.) 

Oh ! mad — inad wretch ! 
W\\\ rave 1 thus ? — danger and murder near liim! 
In — in ! — vour lights — vour swords ! 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Open the tomb. 
And I will front the Dead One ! 

[ The chapel doom are thrown open — the torch- 
bearers enter — Norman discovered near an old 
Gothic tomb, his sword drawn, standing before 
the body of Gaussen. 

It is the spot 
j On which the bridegroom fell before my eyes — 
I. And now he stands as if in life i 

VIOLET. 

O Norman ! — 
You live — you live ! 

u 



i 



98 



THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act v. 



NORMAN. 

Lo, where the father bled 
The son has slain the slaughterer ! — 

Lord Ashdale and Falkner advance. 

ASHDALE. 

Thou ! — my mother ! 
Where is the saviour of my life ?— The stranger ? 

NORMAN (coming in front of the stage). 
Embrace thy son — hear him ! / saved his life ! 

ASHDALE. 

Yes, when the knife was at my throat, his hand 
Palsied the caitiff blow. I had well nigh fallen 
Into the pit myself had dug. Thy plume 
Deceived the blade design'd for thee. Nay, mother, 
I am unscathed. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

He saved thee — He ! 

[ The Servants remove the body. 

LUKE. 

Your Worships, 
If we have sinn'd, it was Sir Maurice Beevor 
Whose monies bribed our chief.— The Knight desired 
The blood of both — your Lordship and the stranger. 

LORD ASHDALE. 

Can this be true ? 



SCENE II.] OR, THE BIHTIIHIGHT. 99 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

I can believe it. Now 
His dark designs are clear ! 

FALKNER {to LuKE). 

Our iioiiest messmates — 
Thou black-brow'd cutthroat — speak, where are they ? — 

speak ! 
If a hair on their heads be hurt — 

LUKE. 

Our leader dead, 
Our business done — your men are safe ! 

FALKNER. 

Lead on. then ; 
Advance the torches — follow. 

NORMAN. 

All tlie menials — 
Take a\\—(^aside) no hireling witness to the conference, 
The last on earth, between the son and motlier ! 

[The Servants place torches on the crags of the 
forest-ground, and eoceunt with Falkner and 
Luke. 

Manent Lady Arundel— Lord Ashdale— Nor- 
man — Violet. 

lady ARUNDEL {advancing towards the chapel). 
Tiiere rests what once was love, now dust ! Perchance 

H -2 



100 



THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act v. 



The love still lives in heaven— and penitent prayer 
The charm that spells the angels. 

[Enters and kneels hij the old tomb.— The moon 
breaks forth. 

NORMAN. 

Violet! 
Wert thou deceived, too ? 

VIOLET. 

Shame upon thee, cousin ! 

ASH DALE. 

Fair stranger, stratagem in love all fair : — 
Forgive my this day's frovvardness — your hand — 
'Tis well— you have saved my life ; do more— resign 
A\'itli a good grace this lady— she is highborn, 
Of our own house ; — too young to know her heart. 
Your worth might make you noble ; — but as yet 
You have your si)urs to win. Resign the maid. 
But take the dower thrice told. 

NORMAN. 

Name, fortune, lands, 
A mother's love — and now the only heart 
That clings to mine— all ! he takes all !— the ewe-lamb ! 

ASHDALE. 



Thy silence gives consent. Oh, Violet, hear me 
I have too far presumed on my high fortunes— 
Woo'd thee too rashly. Pardon me : renounce 
This stranger — brave, but of no fitting birth — 



I 



SCENE ii] OR, Tin: BIRTHKKJUT. 101 

And stand amidst the noblest dames in England, 
The tirst in state as beauty ! 

VIOLET. 

Norman, Norman ! 
^Vliy art thou mute ? — why dost thou gaze upon me ? — 
Why rest thy arms gather 'd above th} breast. 
As if to ward me thence ? 

NORMAN. 

Go, look upon him ! 
His form more fair than mine, his hopes more high. 
I have lost faith in human love ! When mothers 
Forsake their sons, why not the maid her lover ? 

VIOLET. 

Methinks you mock me. Hear me, thou, Lord Ash- 
dale. 
You ask my hand — you proffer wealth, pomp, power. 
And he but toil and danger ! 

NORMAN. 

Thou hast said it. 

VIOLET. 

Behold my choice ! There, where he stands, my fate is ! 
Take me, Oh, take me, Norman ! \\'^oman's love, 
Once iijiven, may break the heart that liolds — but never 
Melts into air, save with her la.te^t sigh. 

NORMAN. 

Faithful amidst the faithless ! I iop«' again 



102 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act v. 

Blooms through the desert. Hither, and let me hear 
The music of one heart that answers mine ! 

ASHDALE. 

It shall not be ! Ignoble one ! The life 
Thou sav'dst is nothing without her ! — the boon 
Is cancell'd. To thy weapon — foot to foot — 
Let valour win the prize ! 

NORMAN. 

I will not harm thee. 

ASHDALE. 

Insolent boaster ! " Harm /" — what ! neither yield 
Nor yet defend ? What would'st thou ? 

NORMAN. 

What? why, stab me 
Here, in these arms, and I'll forgive thee ! Do it ; 
And tell thy mother, when thy holiday blade 
Was raised to smite, my warrior sword fell — thus ! 

ASHDALE. 

Saints, give me patience ! 

LADY ARUNDEL {advancing from the chapel). 

Ay, upon the stone 
Where his bones sleep I have pray'd ; and I have gain'd 
The strength that is not of the Avorld ! How, Percy ? 
Thy sword drawn on thy 



scPNEii.] OR. THE RIRTIIRKJHT. 103 

NORMAN. 

Hush ! I have kept thy secret ! 



Unhappy boy ! 



LADY ARUNDEL. 



ASHDALE. 



Why turn thine eyes from him 
To me ? and straight again to him ? 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Approach, 
Percy, my son ! — Lord Aslidale now no more — 
Behold thy brother ! Ay, the conscience wrings 
Out truth at last : — Thine elder, the sole heir 
To this ill-lated house ! 

ASHDALE. 

This is delirium ! 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

It is not so, irreverent one ! Here, Arthur, 
Into thy hands I do restore the proofs 
That re-assert thy rights — my eldest burn. 
By long-conceal'd, but holiest wedlock with 
Arthur Le Mesnil ! To his breast, my Percy ! 
There is none nolder ! 



NORMAN. 

Wilt thou not, my brother ? 



Whate'er is mine- 



104 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act v. 

ASHDALE. 

Is thine — And dost thou deem 
That I will fawn, a beggar, on thy bounty ? 
Lackey thy heels,' and crawl for crumbs that fall 
From the rich, bounteous, elder brother's board ? 
Ha, ha ! I'd rather couch witli the wild boar, 
And starve on acorns, than the world should cry, 
" See once proud Ashdale, the meek younger brother !" 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Percy, my best-loved ! 

ASHDALE. 

Mother, is it so ? 
Say that thou didst but sport upon my pride ; 
That thou wouldst try me ! Speak ! 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Alas, alas ! 
It is the truth ! 

ASHDALE. 

All is unravell'd now ! 
I ask no proofs — thy looks suffice for proof ! 
I will not hear a tale, perhaps of shame ! 
So, a long farewell, mother ! 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Do not leave me ! 
Oh, do not leave me ! Think how I have loved thee ! 
How, for thy sake, I sinn'd against my soul, 



SCENE ii] OR, THE BlUTHHIGHT. lOo 

And vcil'd, und barr'd, and would luive crusli'd his rights, 
All, all tor thee ! 

VIOLET {timidly). 

We are vounor — ^ve love each other ! 
\\\' do not want titles and gold, my Norman ! 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Say you forgive — and yet, what have you to pardon ? 

ASH DALE. 

Everything, madam. Had you shaped my youth 
Unto the pauper lot which waits nie now, 
I had not nursed desires, and pamper'd wants, 
Into a second nature : my good sword, 
And my free heart, the genii of my fortunes. 
Oh, thou liast wrongVl me foully ! 

NORMAN. 

Shame, boy, shame ! 
Dost thou wnth ruthless and ungrateful taunts 
AnsM-er those agonizing tears ! Ah, mother, 
I loved thee more than he does ! — Tliou repentest ! 
Thou tak'st her hand ! — Forgive him ! 

{Solemnly.) 

My dead father! 
I never saw thee living ; l)ut methinks 
Thy presence fills my soul ! — Poor trend)ling mourner ! 
If, as I feel, that low-horn father loved thee 
Not for thy gold and lands — from yonder grave 
His spirit would chide the son who for such gau(l> 



]06 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act v. 

Would make the bond and pledge of the love he bore 

thee 
A source of shame and sorrow — not of solace ! — 
Hear him then 'speak in me ! — as lightly as 
I, from this mantle, shake the glistening de,ws, 
So my soul shakes off the unwholesome thoughts 
Born of the cloud and earth. — 

{Goes to the torches.^ 

Look ye — all dead ! 
My sire — the priest — all who attest my rights ! 
With a calm hand, unto this flame I yield 
What rest, these scrolls ! — and as the fire consumes 

them, 
So wither all that henceforth can dismay 
Or haunt thy heart, my mother ! — 

ASHDALE. 

Hold — hold — no ! 
I am not so base — 'twas but a moment's weakness. 
Hail the true heir ! 

(^Falling on his breast.) 

My brother — oh, my brother ! 

NORMAN, 

A mother and a brother, both ! — O joy ! 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

My children in each other's arms ! — 

ASHDALE. 

Now summon 
All friends, and let them know the rightful heir. 



■^ 



SCENE II.] OR, THE BIRTHRIGHT. 107 

L.\DY ARUNDEL. 

True — be the justice done — hu au I'wl tale : 

But ye shall hear nie speak it. {J'alteringly) My poor 

Percy ! 
My father's crime too — well — 

NORMAN. 

You mark her, l)rother. 
Sluill ue bring this upon her ? — 

[Hokling the papers over the torches till they are 
consumed. 

It is past ! 
Now, never more a bar heiw'wt your hearts 
And mine — ah, mother ! now thine arms embrace me — 
Now thy kiss melts into my soul ! — 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Oh, bless thee ! — 

NORMAN. 

Hark ! she has bless'd her son — I bid ye witness, 
^'e listening Heavens — thou circumaml)ient air : 
The ocean sighs it back — and with the nmrnmr 
Hustle the happy leaves. All Nature breathes 
Aloud — aloft — to the Great Parent's ear, 
The blessing of the mother on her child. 

ASHDALE, 

How nobler this than our nobility ! 

NORMAN. 

Each to his element ! — the land has form'd 



108 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act v. 

Thy nature as the hardy ocean mine. 

It is no sacrifice. By men and angels ! 

Better one laurel-leaf the brave hand gathers 

Than all the diadems pluck'd from dead men's brows — 

So speaks my father's son ! — Were there before us 

All — all who in this busy and vast mart 

Of merchant traffickers — this land of England — 

Worship tlie yellow god — how one great truth 

Should shake the sceptred Mammon on his throne ! 

Here, in our souls, we treasure up the wealth 
Fraud cannot filch, nor waste destroy ; — the more 
'Tis spent, the more we have ; — the sweet affections — 
The heart's religion — the diviner instincts 
Of what we shall be when the world is dust ! 
Is it so, Violet ? 

VIOLET. 

I never loved thee — 



No, never — till this hour ! A moment since, 

When thou wert what the wrong world calls more great, 

Methought thou wert less Norman ! 

ASH DALE. 

It must not be. 
F'ire cannot quench thy claims — at least together 
We'll live, and share alike. 

NORMAN. 

Thou shalt find vent 
For generous thoughts. Give me what dower thou wilt 
With Violet, if ungrieving thou canst yield 
That priceless treasure to me now, my brother ! 



SCENE II.] OH, Tin; HiirniKi(;nT. 109 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

The dower shall halve ihe heritage. 

ASHDALK. 

Sweet cousin, 
Forgive me! — All the heat of nu wild will 
Melts in the light of that bright soul, — and never 
Did kniojht upon the hand of some tair queen 
Press lips of holier and more loyal homage, 
Than this pure kiss which hails a brother's bride. 

Enter Sir Maurice {lo'ith a hag). 

SIR MAURICE. 

All done ere this ! — My patent is made out. 

Ugh ! but the fees are heavy ! — Ha, these torches ! 

Confusion ! — ((Irops Ihe hag.) 

ASHDALE. 

Knave, thy hireling is no more ! 
Take up thy bribe ! 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

Was it for this, base ingrate, 
'I'hou didst ask gold ? — a double murder ! 

SIR MAURICE. 

Hush! 
He'll hear. 



LADY ARUNDEL. 



Begone ! 



SIR MAURICE {clinging to Lord Ashdale). 

'Twas meant in kindness, Hotspur. 



110 THE SEA-CAPTAIN; [act v. 

ASHDALE. 

Oflf, or I spurn thee, hang-dog ! 

SIR MAURICE. 

Spurn nie ! — Thou 
Shalt live to crawl to me for pence ! — All hail, 
Arthur, the heir of Arundel ! — thy claims — 

NORMAN. 

Are nought. 

SIR MAURICE. 

How ? — but the proofs — 

NORMAN. 

No proofs, but of thy guilt ! 

SIR MAURICE. 

O, wrong'd young man ! 

[Norman ^6»m^6- significantly to the torchea. 
I see it — I'm robb'd and murder'd ! 

NORMAN. 

Hence ! and be mute on what concerns thee not — 

Or But I will not threaten thy grey hairs. — 

Hence, and repent ! 

SIR MAURICE. 

I thank you kindly, sir : 
I am a very poor old Knight ! — My Lord, 
Your very humble cousin ! — To my grave 
A sordid, spat-upon, revengeless, worthless. 



SCENE II. ] OR, THE BIRTHRKJHT. HI 

And rascally poor cousin ! — Yes, I'll go 

Bury my monies — hang myself — and make 

The parish pay the funeral I — Ugh ! — I'll spite them ! 

[E.vit. 
Enter Falkner, Chaplain, Sailors, &c. 

FALKNER. 

Captain — the priest — and now the ship's in sight — 
Wind and tide serve. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

I cannot part from thee, 
My long-lost — my beloved ! 

NORMAN. 

We will not part ! 
Violet the link that binds me to thy hearth. 
And makes thy love (tho' secret the true cause) 
Not in the world's eye strange ; — we will not part 
Till the first moon of wedded love be o'er ; 
And then, if glory call me to the seas. 
Thine eyes shall lure me back from year to year. 

LADY ARUNDEL. 

If ever thou repent'st — 

ASHDALE. 

The half I hold 
Thine \ntli the birtliri<^ht. 



112 THE SEA-CAPTAIN. [act v. 

NORMAN. 

Nay, your love my birthright ; 
And for the rest, who can aspire to more 
Than a true 'heart for ever blent with his — 
Blessings when absent — welcome when return'd ; — 
His merry bark with England's flag to crown her, 
Fame for his hopes, and woman in his cares ? 



THE END. 



London : Printed hv Wii.mam Ci.owks and Sons, Stamford Street 



L O \ E : 



SI Pan. 



IN 11 VK ACT8. 



BY 



JAMES SHERIDAN KNOWLES, 

Al'TIIOR or " THK Hl'NCHBACK," FTf. KTC. 



LU N DON : 
1-: I ) W A U 1 ) .M ( > X O N. I > (> V E K ST K K K T. 

MOCCCXL. 



LONDON : 

miADIiURV AND KVANS, PRINTEIIS TO TIIK QUEEN, 

WHITElflilAIlS. 



TO 

lAMKS MITSPRATT, ESQ. 

OF LIVEIU'OOL. 

My Dear Friend, 

A few honest words may convey a great deal. This Plav 
is justly and joyfully dedicated to you. 

With affection and gratitude. 
Yours, 
JA.MES SHERIDAN KNOWLES. 



ADVERTISEMENT. 



Upon the pleasant borders of the beautiful Loch Ard. and 
of its approj)riate neighbours, the I)hu Loehau and Loch 
Kohn. the gi'eater portion of this drama was composed. 
It was a delightful task ; — cheered, as it was, by the kind 
solicitude of my friend, Robert Dick, Esq., and of his 
family. Never shall 1 forget the time I passed under their 
hospitable roof — to the calm and content afforded mc by 
which I attribute no small portion of the success — if I may 
say "success" — that attended my labours. Never shall I 
forget the anxious, warm-hearted host, who one day laugh- 
ingly snatched my fishing-rod from my hand when I was 
going to play truant ; and, admonishing me that school 
hours were not over yet — for it was noon, and I had limited 
myself to the evening for indulgence in " the angle" — set 
me to my book and pencil ; on which occasion the fruit of 
my compelli-'d industry was one of the best scones in the 
play. 

My friend, John Forstcr, Esq., of LincolnVInn Fields, 
must accept my thanks for service and kindness similar to 
what he has frequently rendered me beforr; and for 



vi ADVERTISEMENT. 

suggesting several important improvements in the conduct 
of the plot — particularly with regard to the' last act. 

Planche, my brother-dramatist, has laid me under obli- 
gations, which I have great pleasure in acknowledging. 
Had the drama been his own, he could not have shown 
more anxiety for its success. He has rendered me essential 
service where I stood very much in need of it, and 1 
cordially thank him. 

My friend, George Bartley, Esq., has added to his claims 
upon my gratitude, on the score of " The Hunchback" and 
"The Wife." 

I owe it to Mr. and Mrs. Mathews to acknowledge that, 
besides having granted me the highest terms I ever yet 
received for a play — they have displayed the most unstinted 
liberality in preparing my drama for representation. 



CHARACTERS. 



Z-.-s^y- /c 



'cPS^ 



DOKK 

Prince Frederick 
Ulbick . 
Sir Rupert 
Sir Otto 
Sir Conrad 

HCJON 

Nicholas 
Stephen 
Falconer 
Herald 

Empress 
codntess 
Cathekink 
Christina 



Mr, Cooper. 
Mr. Selby. 
Mr. Diddear. 
Mr. J. Vining. 
Mr. Filzjames. 
Mr. Wigan. 
Mr. Anderson- 
Mr. Ayliffe. 
Mr. W. II. Pai/ne. 
Mr. Collet/. 
Mr. C. J. Sviifli. 

Mrs. Brougham. 
Miss E. Tree. 
Madame Veslris. 
Miss Lee. 



LOVE. 



ACT I. 
SCENE I. 

A lioom in Cathekinf.'s House. 
Enter Christina and Nicholas. 

CHRISTINA. 

As thou lov'st thine ease, Nicliolas, restrain curiosity. It 
is a steed that runs awav with a man, without his knowintr 
it, until it has thrown him. The danger is never found 
out until the mischief is done. Besides, it is a woman's 
palfrey, which it befits not a man to ride. What signifies 
it to thee, who comes into the house, whatsoever be tiie 
hour, so it is I that let him in ? 

NICHOLAS. 

Doubtless, Mistress Christina ; vet a knock at the door, at 
two o'clock in the morning — and the door opening at that 
hour, to let a man into the house — and that man a gay young 
spark— may make a body wonder, tho* lie have no more 
than the ordinary stock of curiosity. 

CUniSTIN'A. 

Propriety, Nicholas, belongs to no one hour out of the 
twenty-four, more than to any other hour. It was fit that 
liie young spark should come into the house, or I should 
not have let him in. And now mark what I say to you. 

u 



2 LOVE. [act I. 

Play not the house-dog any more. Do you mind ? Let not 
your watchfuhiess interfere with your sleep, else, besides 
your sleep, it may peril your bed and board ; but, if thou 
hearest a knock when thou liest on the weary side of thee, 
and wakest, draw thy night-cap over thine ears and turn on 
the other side ; and so, to sleep again — yea, tho^ it be four 
o'clock in the morning, good Nicholas ! 

NICHOLAS. 

I shall mind. 

CHRISTINA. 

Do so, and thou shalt be wise. Duty, that becomes a 
busy-body, ever turns itself at last out of doors. Hast thou 
a good place, friend Nicholas ? 

NICHOLAS. 

Not a better in all Germany ! 

CHRISTINA. 

Then take my advice, and keep it. 

NICHOLAS. 

I will. 

CHRISTINA. 

Do! (Nicholas goes out.) My mistress will be discovered 
at last, well as she disguises herself, and plays the man. I 
wish she had not taken this fancy into her head ; it may 
bring her into trouble. Ha! here she is; returned to her 
proper self. VVJio would Ijelieve that this was the spark I 
let into the house, at two o'clock in the morning ! 

Enter Catherine. 
CATHERINE — [speaking as she enters.) 
Christina ! 

CHRISTINA. 

Madam I 



SCKNR l] LOVE. 

CATHKUIXE. 
O, here yon are ! Was not Nicholas with you, just now 



? 



CHUISTINA. 

Yes; he is only this moment jToue. I have just hoeii 
giving him a lesson. He saw yon when you came home 
last night. 

CATHEltlNE. 

Hush ! secrets should be tlumb to very walls I 
A chink may change a nation's destinies, 
And where are walls without one — that have doors? 
\'oice hath a giant"'s might, not a dwarf's bulk ; 
It passeth where a tiny fly must stop; 
C onspiracy that does not lock it out 
Fastens the door in vain. Let's talk in whispers, 
And then, with mouth to ear. 'Tis strange, Christina, 
So long I practise this deceit, and still 
Pass for the thing I am not — ne"'er suspected 
The thinjr 1 am — 'mongst those who know me best, t(X). 
Vet would that all dissemblers meant as fair ! 
I play the cheat for very honesty, 
To find a worthy heart out and reward it. 
Far as the poles asunder are two things, 
Self-interest and undesiiininfj love; 
Yet no two things more like, to see them smile. 
He is a conjuror, Christina, then, 
Can tell vou which is which ! Shall I be won, 
Because Fm valued as a monev-bag. 
For that I bring to him who winneth me ? 
No I — sooner matins in a cloister than 
Marriage like that in open church ! ' lis hard 
To find men out ; they are such simple things I 
Heaven help vou ! they are mostly bird-catchers, 

b2 



-1 LOVE. [act I. 

That hold aloof until vouVe in their nets, 

And then they are down upon 3'ou and you're caged, 

Nor more your wings your own. I have scarcely slept ! 

CHRISTIN'A. 

You run great risk, methinks, for doubtful gain. 
I wonder oft, when thus you plav the man, 
You should escape offence ; for men there are, 
By nature brawlers, and of stalwart limb, 
Who of their fellows take advantage when 
Of slight and stinted frame ; and you do make 
But, at the best, a green and osier man ! 

CATHERINE. 

And there 's a little airv, fairv thing, 

Caird spirit ; equalises statures, thews. 

Ay, between dwarfs and giants, my Christina; 

Whereof, altho^ a woman, I have a share 

Ekes my dimensions out, bevond what, else, 

IMight suffer those o'erbear, that do o'ertower me. 

Besides, I have full pockets I That "s enough ! 

They call me " The young Stranger," and forbear « 

All question, since admonish'd 'twas my mood |H 

To see the world incognito : which I vouch'd ^* 

AVith a full purse, that made the table ring. 

As I cast it down : and startled some to see. 

As Fortune's loaded horn had leaped among them. 

CHRISTINA. 

And think you none did e'er suspect your sex? 

CATHERINE. 

Sure on 't ; for once suspected, "'twere found out. 

CHRISTINA. 

How do \ ou hide the woman ? 



I 



SCENE I.] LOVE. 

CATHERINE. 

With the man ! 

It was my girllioofKs study. Bless tliee, child, 

Good shows do bc":f;^ir had realities ! 

When I have dressM my brows, my upper lip 

And chin en cavalier, I take an oath, 

From such a time to such, I am a man. 

And so I am ! One quarreird with me once — 

'I'was when 1 first began this masquerade. 

" Look you," quoth I, " 1 never quarrel but 

" To fight, nor fight except to kill ; and so 

" I make my mind up, sir, to die myself; 

*' So spare your carte and tierce. Set points to hearts, 

*' And at the signal, in !" Mis fire I quench'd, 

As water turneth iron cinder-black, 

In a white heat duck'd sudden into it ! 

CHRISTINA. 

But of your lovers.'' 

CATHERINE. 

Tell me who thev are ? 

Alas, to have a ri\al in one's gown ! 

For 'tis the same thing — ^tis your property. 

The fabric of the sempstress to outdo 

Heaven's fashioning — your body and your face; 

A piece of web, a needle and a thread. 

Give value to them that themselves have not ! 

Vet so it is with dames of noble birth, 

And how much more, then, with a wretched serf. 

For, iho' ten times enfranchised, such I am. 

But what my betters st(X)p to, day by day, 

1 spurn, Christina, spurn ! nor deign to wetl, 

Except a man that loves me for myself ! 



fi LOVE. [act I. 

CHRISTINA. 

And such a man, methinks, Sir Rupert seems. 

CATHERINE. 

Ah ! he is poor ! 

CHRISTINA. 

And what of that ? He is proud, 
And seems as jealous of his poverty 
Almost as you are. 

CATHERINE. 

Yes ! He makes no suit. 

He ever follows me, yet stands aloof, 

While others lav close slesre. 

CHRISTINA. 

And of his rivals, 
Prefer you any ? 

CATHERINE. 

No. Have I not said, 

When tax'd with paying court to me, the rest — 

Yea one and all — instead of boasting me, 

My person, or my mind, for their excuse, 

Set forth my wealth ; and ask if there ""s a man. 

Who would not wed a serf, with such a mine .^ 

CHRISTINA. 

Sir Rupert sins not thus. 

CATHERINE. 

Sir Rupert ? No ! 

I bear him hard when I enact the man, 

Which yet he suffers for the sake of Catherine, 

My mad-cap cousin, as I call myself. 

He is jealous of me ; eyes me thus, as he'd 



1 



SCENE I.] LOVE. 7 

A spaniel that may bite as soon as fawn. 
He never speaks of me — 1 mean myself — 
Unless enforced, and then, to end the theme. 
" Sir Rupert,"" saiil I to hnu once, with more 
Than wont civility — O, could vou sec 
M hat a fire-imp I am when I'm a man — 
" Sir Rupert," said I to him once, " methinks 
" Your friends are sorry judges of good fruit ; 
" And for an apj)le like to get a crab. 
" Deal frankly with me, kin you know are kin 
" All the world over; now a hug and kiss, 
" And boxing faces next ! It follows not, 
" You know, since I am coz to Catherine, 
" Because .she has the tooth-ache, I have one ? 
" So, tell me, fair Sir Rupert, — for, indeed, 
" Aitho' a spoil'd boy, as 'tis lawful for 
" A mother's pet to be, I wish you well, — 
" What think you of my cousin Catherine .'^" 
And what was his reply.-* Beginning, middle. 
And end, as much as this, — " She is a woman."" 
But, faith, the answer came in such a tone. 
Each single word might pass for a whole book. 

CHRISTINA. 

I am sure Sir Rupert loves you : he has all 
The signs of a lover. 

CATHERlNli- 

What are they .'' 

ml 

CnitlSTI.SA. 

He sighs. 

CATHERINE. 

Sighs ! Listen to me ! {drawing a deep airjJi.) There, girl ! 
what think vou now 



8 LOVE. [act I. 

Of that, for a sigh ! and say you Vm in love ? 
I will coin sighs for you, fast as the mint 
Coins ducats. Shows are all uncertain things, 
Unless the cheek indeed grows lank and pale — 
Yet that may be with frequent lack of dinner. 
So, "'tis betwixt the heart and appetite I 
O for a sign would be infallible, 
And him to show it, I would see it on ! 

CIIIIISTINA. 

Sir Rupert? 

CATHElllNE. 

What is that to you ? Dear girl, 
Whoe'er it be, I pray that I may love him ! 
The countess flies her hawk to-day. Til make 
Essay of mine. 

CHRISTINA. 

A most strange lady, she ! 

A form of flesh, and heart of ice. 

CATHERINE. 

Not so. 

A heart, Christina, all possessed of pride — 
That hath no place for any passion else. 
Suitors pursue her, still she yields to none. 
But, hard requital ! pays their love with scorn ; 
That, out of troops, remains at last but one, 
The Prince of Milan. 

CHRISTINA. 

Will she ever love? 

Her heart is scarce the soil to root love's flower ! 



SCENE I.] LOVE. 9 

CATHERINE. 

No tellinsr how love tli rives ! to what it comes ! 

Whence trrows ! 'Tis e'en of as mysterious root. 

As the pine that makes its lodging of the rock, 

Yet there it Hves, a huge tree, flourishing, 

Where you would think a blade of grass would die ! 

What is love's poison, if it be not hate? 

Yet in that poison, oft is found love's food. 

Frowns that are clouds to us, are sun to him ! 

He finds a music in a scornful tongue, 

That melts him more than softest melody — 

Passion perverting all things to its mood, 

And, spite of nature, matching opposites ! 

But, come, we must attire us for the field. 

The field — the field — Christina, were't to take 

The field in love ? — a fair and honest fijiht ! 

I wonder, be tiiere one true man on the earth ? 

But if there be, I one true woman know 

To match him — were he true as native gold. 

CHRISTINA. 

I think Sir Rupert one. 

CATHERINE. 

Sir Rupert ? — Umph I 

If he were rich, and I as poor as he, 

I'd tell you " yes,'"' or *' no," within the week. 

Heaven keep me from the proof! — I should not like 

To find Sir Rupert out. Come. Let me wed 

'i'he man that loves me, or else die a maid ! [ Tln'y go out. 



1 



10 LOVE. [act I. 



SCENE II. 

An Apartment in the Duke's Castle. 



The Countess — Huon reading/ to her. 

COUNTESS. 

Give o'er ! I hate the poet's argument ! 
'Tis falsehood — 'tis offence. A noble maid 
Stoop to a peasant ! — Ancestry, sire, dam, 
Kindred and all, of perfect blood, despised 
For love ! 

HUON. 

The peasant, tho"* of humble stock. 
High nature did ennoble — 

COUNTESS. 

What was that ? 

Mean you to justify it? But, go on. 

HUON. 

Not to offend. 

COUNTESS. 

Offend ! — No fear of that, 

I hope, 'twixt thee and me ! I pray you, sir, 

To recollect yourself, and be at ease, 

And as I bid you, do. Go on. 

HUON. 

Descent, 

You'll grant, is not alone nobihty. 



SCENE II.] LOVE. 11 

Will you not ? Never yet was line so long, 

But it beginning had : and that was found 

In rarity of nature, giving one 

Advantage over many ; aptitude 

For arms, for counsel, so superlative 

As baffled all competitors, and made 

The many glad to follow him as guide 

Or safeguard ; and with title to endow him. 

For his high honour or to gain some end 

8up}X)sed propitious to the general weal. 

On those who should descend from him entail'd. 

Not in descent alone, then, lies degree, 

Which from descent to nature may be traced, 

Its proper fount ! And that, which nature did, 

You'll grant she may be like to do again ; 

And in a very peasant, yea, a slave, 

Enlodge the worth that roots the noble tree. 

I trust I seem not bold, to argue so. 

COUXTESS. 

Sir, when to me it matters what you seem, 
Make question on't. If you have more to say, 
Proceed — yet mark you how the poet mocks 
Himself your advocacy ; in the sec^uel 
His hero is a hind in ma.^querade ! 
He proves to be a lord. 

HUON. 

The poet sinn'd 

Against himself, in that ! He should have known 

A better trick, who had at hand his own 

E.\celling nature to admonish him, 

Than the low cunning of the common craft. 

A hind, his hero, won the lady's love : 

He had worth enough for that ! Her heart was his. 



k_ 



12 LOVE. [act I. 

Wedlock joins nothing, if it joins not hearts. 
Marriage was never meant for coats of arms. 
Herahlry flourishes on metal, silk. 
Or wood. Examine as you will the blood, 
No painting on't is there ! — as red, as warm, 
The peasant's as the noble's ! 

COUNTESS. 

Dost thou know 
Thou speak'st to me? 

IIUON. 

'Tis therefore so I speak. 

COUNTESS. 

And know'st thy duty to me ? 

HUON. 

Yes. 

COUNTESS. 

And see'st 

My station, and thine own ? 

HUON. 

I see my own. 

COUNTESS. 

Not mine? 

HUON. 

I cannot, for the fair 
Overtopping height before. 

COUNTESS. 

What height? 

HUON. 

Thyself ! 

That towerest 'bove thy station ! — Pardon me ! 
O, wouldst thou set thy rank before thyself? 
^Vouldst thou be honoured for thyself, or that ? 



SCENE II.] LOVE. 13 

Kank that excels its wearer, doth degrncle. 

Riches impoverish, that divide respect. 

(), to be cherishM for one.self alone ! 

To owe the love that cleaves to us to iioujjht 

Which fortune's summer — winter — gives or takes ! 

To know that while we wear the heart and mind, 

Feature and form, high Heaven endowM us with. 

Let the storm pelt us, or fair weather warm. 

We shall be loved ! Kings, from their thrones cast down, 

Have bless'd their fate, that they were valued for 

Themselves and not their stations, when some knee. 

That hardlv bow'd to them in plenitude, 

Has kiss'd the dust before them, stripped of all. 

couN'TESs {ctmfuscd). 
I nothing see that''s relative in this. 
That bears upon the argument. 

HUGS. 

O, much, 

Durst but my heart explain. 

CODNTESS. 

Hast thou a heart ? 

I thought thou wast a serf; and, as a serf. 

Hadst thought and will, none other than thy lord's ; 

And so no heart — that is, no heart of thine own. 

But since thou say'st thou hast a heart, 'tis well 

Keep it a secret ; — let me not suspect 

\N hat, were it e'en suspicion, were thy death. 

Sir, did I name a banquet to thee now, 

Thou lookedst so ? 

HUON. 

To die, for thee, were such. 



14 LOVE. [act I. 

COUXTESS. 

Sir ? ^ 

HUON. 

For his master oft a serf has died, 

And thought it sweet, — and may not, then, a serf 

Say for his mistress, 'twere a feast to die ? 

COUNTESS. 

Thou art presumptuous — very — so no wonder 
If T misunderstood thee. Thou'dst do well 
To be thyself, and nothing more. 

« 

HUON. 

Myself— 

COUNTESS. 

Why, art ihou not a serf ! What right hast thou 

To set thy person off with sucli a bearing .'' 

And move with such a gait ? — to give thy brow 

The set of noble's, and thy tongue his phrase? 

Thy betters"" clothes sit fairer upon thee 

Than on themselves, and they were made for them. 

I have no patience with thee — can't abide thee ! 

There are no bounds to thy ambition, none ! 

How durst thou e''er adventure to bestride 

The war-horse — sitting him, that people say 

Thou, not the knight, appcar'st his proper load ? 

How durst thou touch the lance, the battle-axe, 

And wheel the flaming falchion round thy head. 

As thou wouldst blaze the sun of chivalry ? 

I know ! — my father found thy aptitude. 

And humour'd it, to boast thee off? He may chance 

To rue it ; and no wonder if he should ; 

If others*' eyes see that they should not see 

Shown to them by his own. 



scKXK II.] LOVE. ].-) 

HUO\. 



O, lady— 

What ? 

Heard I ariiiht ? 



COUNTESS. 



HUON. 



COUNTESS. 

Ariglit — what lieard'st thou, then ? 

I woukl not think tliee so presuniptuous 

As through thy pride to misinterpret me. 

It were not for thy heakh, — yea, for thy hfe ! 

Beware, sir. It would set my quiet blood, 

On haste for mischief to thee, rushing thro' 

My veins, did I believe — ! Thou art not mad ; 

Knowing thy vanity, I aggravate it. 

Thou know'st 'twere shame, the lowest free-woman 

That follows in my train should think of thee? 

HUON. 

I know it, lady. 

COUNTESS. 

That I meant to say, 

No more. Don't read such books to me again. 

1 would you had not learn'd to read so well, 

I had been spared your annotations. 

For the future, no reply, when I remark. 

Hear, but don't speak — unless you're told — and then 

No more than you're told ; — what makes the answer up. 

No syllable beyond. [Enter Falconer, ivit/t hawk. 

My falconer ! So. 
An hour I'll fly my hawk. 

FALCONER. 

A noble bird. 

My lady, knows his bells, is proutl of them. 



16 LOVE. [act I. 

COUNTF.SS. 
They are no portion of his excellence; 
It is his own ! 'Tis not by them he makes 
His ample wheel ; mounts up, and up, and up 
In spiry rings, piercing the firmament, 
Till he o'ertops his prey ; then gives his stoop 
More fleet and sure than ever arrow sped ! 
How nature fashion'd him for his bold trade ! 
Gave him his stars of eyes to range abroad, 
His wings of glorious spread to mow the air, 
And breast of might to use them ! I delight 
To fly my hawk. The hawk's a glorious bird ; 
Obedient — yet a daring, dauntless bird ! 
You may be useful, sir ; wait upon me. 

\They go out. 



END OF ACT I. 



»ccNK I.] LOVE. 17 



ACT 11. 

SCENE I. 

The Country. On one side a liuin, on the other a clump of 

h\ftii trees. 



EntiT Prince Frederick and Ulrick. 

FREDERICK. 

Now thou hast seen her, tell nie what thou think'st. 
Has she a heart ? 

ILRICK. 

I think her flesh and blood. 

FREDERICK. 

Ay, most sweet flesh, and blood most rich ! 

ULEICK. 

Then sure 

She has a heart. 

FREDERICK. 

But where is it ? None yet 
Have found it out. 

ULRICK. 

Vou mean, a heart to love .'* 

FREDERICK. 

If not such heart, as well no iieart at all ! 

ULEICK. 

jNIcn tell a mine a hundred fathoms deep, 
By certain signs that near the surface lie : 
Are flesh and blood more fallible than clay.'' 

c 



18 LOVE. [act. II. 

Take but her face— there''s not a feature on't, 
But vouches for the mood. Require you more ? 
Her limbs and body give you proof on proof. 
If these convince you not, essay her voice ; 
'Tis of the stop befits the melting vein. 
There''s nought without but with her sex consists, 
Pronouncing her its pattern, passing rich ! 
And can she lack the heart, the want of which 
Would turn such affluence to poverty ? 
Prove nature but a niggard, after all, 
Where she should seem to be most beautiful ? 
She has a heart, sir ; and a heart to love ! 

FREDERICK. 

How comes it, then, I plead a bootless suit, 

And not a boy at wooing .? Had I a chance 

With a heart, were it not wholly occupied, 

I never fail'd to find some footing in it 

If not instate myself with ease ; — with dames, 

I own, less lofty, tho' on lighter terms 

Than gift of hand for life. Why fail I here V 



Hast thou no rival ? 

None. 

Thou art sure ? 



ULRICK. 



FREDERICK. 



ULRICK. 



FREDERICK. 



T am. 

Dishearten'd at a race that hath no goal, 
Or one that seems to distance on approach, 
My rivals leave the field to me alone. 



SCENE I.] LOVE. 19 

ULRICK. 

Thou niay'st have rivals wliom thou know"'st not of. 

FREDERICK. 

No ! I have pressed lier father oft thereon, 
And learn'd the history, beginning, close 
Of every siege of wooing ; ending each 
In mortified retreat. 

ULllICK. 

You may have rivals 

Unknown to him. Love joys in mystery ; 
And when you think it countless miles away, 
Is lurking close at hand. 

FREDERICK. 

You are still at fault. 

She has no favourM lover — cannot have. 

The thing is out of chance, impossible ! 

ULRICK. 

Call nought impossible, till thou liast proved 
That passion hath essay 'd it, and been foiPd ; 
And set this down — nature is nature still. 
And, thought to swerve, is at the bottom true. 
Thy mistress is not stone, but flesh and blood, 
Wherein doth lodge the juice of sympathy ; 
Which, more refined in woman than in man, 
In woman, sways it measurelessly stronger ! 
The essence of the sex is that wherein 
We win a gift of their sweet forms and souls — 
The tenderness for some especial one 
Who then, 'midst millions, seems to stand alone. 
That being absent, then there is no sex 1 
So where sex is, that also must be there — 
As where the sun, also the light and heat. 

c2 



20 LOVE. [act II. 

So of two issues, set thy mind to one — 

She has found the man, who stands 'mongst miUions sole, 

Or he is^yet to find, and thou not he. 

FREDERICK. 

Thou nani'st two issues — I can find a third. 

ULRICK. 

Where is it ? 

FREDERICK. 

Here. As many streams will go 

To make one river up, one passion oft 

Predominant, all others will absorb. 

ULRICK. 

What passion, swoln in her, drinks up the rest ? 

FREDERICK. 

Tride. 

tILRICK. 

Of her beauty, or her rank, or what ? 

FREDERICK. 

Pride of herself ! intolerant of all 
Equality — nor that its bounds alone — 
Oppressive to the thing that is beneath her. 
Say that she waves me off when I advance, 
She spurns the serf that bows to her at distance. 
Suitor and secretary fare alike. 
I woo for scorn, he for no better serves — 
Nay, rather worse comes off. 

ULRICK. 

Her secretary ? 

FREDERICK. 

The only one of all his wretched class 

Her presence brooks; for he is useful to her, 



SCENE I.] LOVE. [ 21 

Reads with a music, as a lute did talk : 

^^' rites, as a graver did the lett«'rs trace: 

Transhites dark languaires — for learninf; which 

She hatii a strange conceit : is wise in rare 

Philosophy : hath mastery besides 

Of all sweet instruments that men essay — 

The hautboy, viol, lute. 

ILRICK. 

A useful man 

Your highness draws! What kind of thing is he 

To look upon ? 

FREDERICK. 

'Faith, proper, sir, in trunk, 
Feature, and limb ; to envy, though a serf. 
But, err I not, a most unhappy man, 
And, for his service, weary of his life. 

ULKICK. 

love, a wilful, wayward thing thou art ! 
'Twere strange ! 'twere very strange ! 

FREDERICK. 

\Vhat? what were strange.'' 

What said'st thou now, apostrophising love.'* 

ULRICK. 

1 said it was a wilful, wayward thing, 
And so it is — fantastic and perverse ! 

Which makes its sport of persons and of seasons, 

Takes its own way, no matter right or wrong. 

It is the bee that finds the honey out, 

Wliere least you'd dieam 'twould seek the ntctarous store. 

And 'tis an arrant masquer — this same love — 

That most outlandish, freakish faces wears 



22 LOVE. [act 11. 

To hide its own ! Looks a proud Spaniard now ; 

Now a grave Turk; hot Ethiopian next; 

And then phlegmatic Englishman ; and then 

Gay Frenchman ; by and by, Italian, at 

All things a song ; and in another skip. 

Gruff' Dutchman ; — still is love behind the masque ! 

It is a hypocrite ! — looks every way 

But that where lie its thoughts ! — will openly 

Erown at the thing it smiles in secret on ; 

Shows most like hate, e'en when it most is love ; 

Would fain convince you it is very rock 

When it is water ! ice when it is fire ! 

Is oft its own dupe, like a thorough cheat ; 

Persuades itself 'tis not the thing it is; 

Holds up its head, purses its brows, and looks 

Askant, with scornful lip, hugging itself 

That it is high disdain — till suddenly 

It falls on its knees, making most piteous suit 

With hail of tears, and hurricane of sighs. 

Calling on heaven and earth for witnesses 

That it is love, true love, nothing but love \ 

FREDERICK. 

You would not say the lady loves the serf? 

ULRICK. 

I would say nothing in particular. 
Save upon proof. Let me together note 
The serf and lady, I will speak to the point. 
Or, baffled, hold my peace. 

FREDERICK. 

To that intent 

I sent for thee, — for thou art keen of sight 

To pry into the inmost thoughts of men, 



SCENE I.] LOVE. 23 

And find the pro])cr ends towards whidi they aim, 
Howe''er dissembled by assumed purpose. 

ULUICK. 

Your pardon, sir; your father bade me come 
To warn you, in these times of turbulence, 
He means to stand aloof, and take no part 
Between the barons and the empress, — so 
Your course you know to shape. What company 
Is this ? 

FREDERICK. 

The countess flies her hawk to-day. 

And these are falconers in advance of her. 

Those nearest us, observe. The lady first. 

Is a rich serf, supposed love-daughter to 

The former duke, who left her well endow'd. 

Those with her are her suitors ; but with none 

She'll mate, believing that her wealth is prized 

Beyond herself, — nor does she widely err, 

Though some might think her beauty dower enougli ! 

There is one who follows her indeed for love, 

A man of heart ; a gentleman, but poor, 

Who his revenue spends upon his back ; 

I say he follows her : he woos her not. 

Through pride, 'tis said, lest he be thought to hunt 

The dross so much he needs ; — whence I esteem 

His chance the best. Mark ! he is last of all. 

Let us retire a space; there's company 

Enough without us here. Some minutes yet 

Before the countess will alight, and then 

Remains the hill to climb. So bright a day, 

iNIcthinks, will scarce go by without a frown. 

\_Thry retire. 



24 LOVE. [act II. 

Enter Catherine, Sir Conrad, Sir Otto, unci Sir 

Rupert. 

/ 

CATHERINE. 

Spy you my hawk? 'Twas here he struck his bird, 
And vanish'd from my sight. 

SIR OTTO. 

Or I mistake, 

Or from his stoop he rose again, and skimmVI 

The brow of yonder copse. 

SIR CONRAD. 

I mark'd not if 

He soar'd a second time. 

CATHERINE. 

Were I a man, 

And waited on a lady that did Jiawk, 

I'd keep her bird in sight ! Sir Rupert, what 

Say you ? Where shall we go and seek my hawk. 

Or lurks he hereabouts ? 

SIR RUPERT. 

I saw him not 
At all. 

CATHERINE. 

Not see my hawk at all ? Youll do 

For a falconer ; so ! Had I that boy, 

My hair-brain'd cousin, whom you say you know, 

And fair Sir Rupert hath such fancy for. 

He plays the wasp so well— (a novel taste ! 

As I can vouch he is indeed no bee. 

To pay you with his honey for his sting !) — 

Had I that scape-grace with me, he would find 

My hawk ere you began to look for it. — i 



i'l 



SCENE I.] LOVE. 25 

How loth these friends are to part company ! 

Now will I scatter them {asidr). Who iintls my hawk. 

Deserves to kiss my hand, and he shall do it. 

[Sir Otto aiid Sir Conrad ;m;i off. 
What ! like you not my wages, sir, you stand 
Nor make a proffer of your services ! 

SlK liUlT.UT. 

To kiss your hand would be most rich reward, 
If love''s sweet gift to him who sought your love ; 
But, if love's gift, to one alone 'twere made 
And not to any one ! 

CATHERINE. 

Love's gift — what's that ? 

Most thankless ])roffer made by empty hand. 

Give me bright diamonds, I shall have i)right eyes. 

^^'hcn fetch'd desert its value and was poor? — 

A hundred years ago ? — but it was left 

A legacy, and then they found it out ! 

The world, they say, is an old churl, — 'tis not. 

Can you afford to feast, you shall be feasted ; 

You shall not dine at home one day out of three ; 

Nay, you may shut up house, for bed and boiud. 

SIR UUl'ERT. 

Vou are a vouni; ascetic. 

CATHERINE. 

Am I so ? 

Well, if I am 'tis in the family — 

\\ itness my cousin whom you love so well. 

A young ascetic say you ? Sir, I am 

A young Diogenes in petticoats. 

I have strings of axioms. Here are more for vou. 

They say that beauty needs not ornament; 



[ 



26 LOVE. [act II. 

But sooth she fares the better having it, 
Altliough she keeps it in her drawer. 

SIR RUPERT. 

Indeed ? 

CATHERINE. 

Indeed, and very deed. For I have known 
Bracelets and rings do miracles, where nature 
Play'd niggard, and did nothing, or next to it ; 
Beat lotions in improving of the skin. 
And mend a curve the surgeon had given up 
As hopeless. 

SIR RUPERT. 

Nay, you speak in irony. 

CATHERINE. 

I speak in truth, speaking in irony ; 

For irony is but a laughing truth 

Told of a worthless thing. Will you have more? 

You shall then. Have you never heard it said, 

Or never dream'd you such a thing as this — 

That fortune's children never yet lackM wit, 

Virtue, grace, beauty, the' it tax'd the owners 

To find them out ? Once an exception chanced, 

I know not in what year or part of the world. 

But, while men stared at the anomaly, 

One parasite, less comet-struck than the rest, 

Turn'd up a heap of rubbish of all things 

Good men and wise and men of taste eschew. 

And found them underneath ! Take this along, tho"". 

The owner never knew their value, for 

He ne'er had need to go to market with them. 

Why, what a man you are. Sir Rupert ! Fie ! 

What ! not a word to say ? Let's change the theme then : 



SCENE I.] LOVE. 

The argument shall be, that vou're in love; 

The which shall I affirm while you deny. 

I say you are in love. Come, prove me wrong ! 

SIR RUPERT. 

I never argue only for the sake 
Of argument. 

CATHERINE. 

Come, come, you have a tongue ! 

You are in love — I'll prove it by fifty things. 

And first and foremost, you deny it, sir ; 

A certain sign, with certain accidents — 

As dulness, moodiness, moroseness, shyness. 

1 'd stake my credit on one single fact 

Thou bearest out to admiration — 

A lover is the dullest thing on earth. 

Who but a lover— or his antipodes, 

A wise man — ever found out that the use 

Of his tongue was to hold it? Thou must be in love, 

And for one sovereign reason, after which 

111 give no other — thou dost follow me ! 

SIR RUI'ERT. 

Madam, altho' I may not use my tongue, 
1 do my eyes and ears. 

CATHERINE. 

liut not your feet. 

Will you not seek my hawk, and run a chance 
To kiss my hand — or would it trouble you. 
In case you found my hawk, to use your lips ? 
But I forget 'tis now your turn to speak, 
And prove ray oaks of arguments are reeds. 
Have you no word ? — or am not I worth one ? 
Or must I take your side, and beat myself? 



28 LOVE. [act II. 

I'll take your side, then. You are not in love, 
Lovinjj yourself too well ! 



SIR RUPEllT. 



You wrong me there. 



CATHERINE. 

Why, see what pains you take with your person ! How 
You dress ! 

SIR RUPERT. 

'Tis not my vanity, but pride. 

I am too poor to put mean habit on. 

Whose garments wither shall meet faded smiles 

Even from the worthy, so example sways, 

So the plague poverty is loath'd, and shunned 

The luckless wight who wears her fatal spot ! 

Want, but look full ; else you may chance to starve. 

Unless you**!! stoop to beg. You force me, lady, 

To make you my severe confessional. 

From such prostration never can I rise 

The thing I was before. Farewell — 

CATHERINE {looks OUt). 

Farewell ! 

What ! go not to fetch my hawk, and there 

He sits upon his quarry, new alit ? 

Or want you earnest of your wages ? Well, 

There, kiss my hand, and go and fetch my hawk, 

And then be paid in full. 

SIR RUPERT. 

If 1 could speak — 

CATHERINE. 

My hawk were off' again, ere you had done ; 
So I would lose his service — thou my thanks ! 



SCENE I] LOVE. 29 

SIR RUPERT. 

I will secure him straight. [_Goes out. 

CATHERINE. 

I gave him pain, 

Tho' he has borne it with a noble heart ! 

I hope he will not make me weep in turn. 

Symptoms I feel of something like a shower — 

A slight one — but it must not fall. They are gone. 

A noble heart ! a very noble heart ! 

£nter Sir Rupert. 

SIR RUPERT. 

I have miss'd the hawk — he has taken wing again. 

CATHERINE. 

■*Twas not your fault — you did the best you could. 

I am not angry. There's my hand for you. 

IMark'd you which course he took ? Then, come along, 

M'e'll hunt for him tocrether. 

o 

SIR RUPERT. 

Stop — it lowers ! 

There's shelter here. 

[Sir Rupert a7id Catherine approach the Biiins — 
Enter the CovHT ESS and Hvo^, icith Attendants 
— Prince Frederick and Ulrick come for- 
ward a little, hut so as not to he noticed. 

COUNTESS (to Sir Rupert). 
Will there not be a storm .'' 

UUON. 

I am sure there will. 

COUNTESS. 

I ask'd not you to speak ! When you should speak 



30 LOVE. [act II. 

It shall be shown — it shall be plain. Be sure 
It is so, ere you give your counsel, sir. 

I^HuoN retires to the group oftrees^ and leans against 
one of them. 
Do you not think there's threatening of a storm ? 

SIR RUPERT. 

Yes, lady. When the Heavens look troubled thus, 
Earth can't be long at peace. 

FREDERICK. 

The only man 

She brooketh speech from, with complacency. 
Observe her now when I accost her. Madam, 
Wilt please you take my escort to your coach. 
At the hill foot I see attending on you ? 

COUNTESS {haughtily). 
The rain is on, sir ; I am better here. 

Sir Otto and Sir Conrad enter in haste. 

SIR OTTO. 

A storm ! a storm ! Those pitch-black clouds that speed 
In wild career to meet the sun, as though 
In envy of iiis light to blot him out. 
Come right against the wind — a token they 
Bring thunder ! 

SIR CONRAD. 

Yes ; I saw a forked flash. 

And while I held my breath and listened, heard 

The distant clap. \_To Sir Otto] Avoid the trees; their tops 

With boastful towering, dare the threatening bolt 

To strike them ! 

[Sir Otto and Sir Conrad approach the ruins. 

ULRICK. 

Do you note? She does not move — 



SCENE I.] LOVE. 31 

What keeps her tliere ? Is that the scorned serf, 
Leans drcx^ping 'gainst the trunk of the tall tree, 
Lends him pernicious shelter ? — Clear as day ! 

FREDERICK. 

Tis dark as night ! 

LLRICK. 

What ? — O, the storm ! My lord, 

I meant not that — ^your doubts arc clearing up. 

Look at the serf and lady. 

CATHEllINE {to SiR RuPERT). 

Pray you speak 

To the Countess — tell her she's in danfrcr there 

'I'o stand so near the trees. 

SIR RUPERT. 

Madam — 

CATHERINE. 

Apace 

The storm comes on ! 'Twill soon be overhead — 
Ay ! there's the thunder now, and loud enounrh. 
She heard not. Call to her again. She bears 
That you accost her. 

SIR RUPERT. 

She is fond of you. 

CATHERINE. 

Yes ; but you mark'd her scorn of Huon, now ! 

SIR RUPERT. 

Madam ! ^ladam ! Pray you 

Come from beneath the trees. It lifjhtens fast — 

A bolt may strike you, madam ! 

COUNTESS. 

I do hear you, sir. 



32 LOVE. [act II. 

ULRICK. 

The peril of the serf transfixes lier ! 

Her life, be sure, is only part of his ! 

A common act of charity it were 

Command him thence ; but, conscious of the cause, 

Stronger than charity, would prompt the act, 

And fearing to betray it worse than death, 

She perils her own life ! It is not right 

To leave her there — go to her — take her thence ! 

FREDERICK. 

Your pardon, lady, but you must not brave 
The lightning. Come into the open space : 
There's shelter, with less chance of penalty. 
Beneath this time-worn ruin. {Thunder and lightning.) 

Heavens, how near ! 
Almost together came the clap and flash ! 
The trees are all on fire — the serf is struck ! 

[HuoN staggers from, the tree — the CoUNTf.ss rushes 
to him, clasping him. 

COUNTESS. 

No ! no ! — O Heaven, he''s dead ! why would he stand 
Beneath the trees ! — What, Huon ! — speak to me! 
Show me thou hear'st me ! Let me see some signs 
Of life ! Why, Huon ! Huon !— He is dead ! 

ULRICK. 

Lady, he is not dead, but only stunn'd. 
'Twas but a shock, altho' a heavy one. 
His colour comes — you see his eye-lids ope** — 
So please you, leave the charge of him to me. 

COUNTESS. 

I thank you, sir — am sorry such a load 

Should burden you. Would some of my attendants 



i 



scENK I-] LOVE. 33 

Were here, to ease you on''t. How dread a thing 
Is death, when sight on't makes one not oneself ! 
Grows it not lighter, sirs ? — Ay, there's the sky. 
Almost as soon as come the storm is gone. 
Pray leave him to himself. 'Twas but a shock; 
It shames me, such a load should burthen you. 

ULRICK. 

As yet, he cannot stand. 

COUNTESS. 

Indeed ? — O ! — ay ! — 

It was a heavy shock. I have a horror, 

And always had, of lightning. Do you know 

It takes away my wits .'' Did you not feel 

As I did, Catherine, when they thought the lightning 

Had kill'd the serf? A dreadful thing is death ! 

And most of all, by lightning ! where is my hawk ? 

O, they had charge to bring him after me, 

And here they come. Let's meet them, Catherine. 

l^Goinff, stops and turns to look at HuoK. 

ULRICK. 

He still grows better, madam. 

COUNTESS. 

Who, sir ?— O, 

The serf? — Why, Catherine, where's your hawk? 

CATHERINE. 

I have lost him. 

COUNTESS. 

I hope the lightning has not struck him. Come ; 
We'll have fair weather yet. 

u 



34 LOVE. [act II. 

Enter two or three Attendants. 
Go, some of you, 
Relieve his lordship from his load. 

[_Tico of the Attendants take HuoN, and lead him off^ 
the Countess watching. 

ULRICK. 

You see 

He is unhurt. 

COUNTESS. 

My lord ? — I see. — You take 

Great interest in my serf. The sun is out ; 

My hawk against the field ! Come, Catherine. 

\_All go ont, except Frederick and Ulrick. 

ULRICK. 

You see, my lord ; and seeing, comprehend. 
Straight will I to the Duke, and tell him this, 
A kingdom to a hawk, she loves the serf ! 

[They go out, severally. 



END OP ACT II. 



scKNE 1. 1 LOVE. 35 



ACT 111. 
JS C E N E [. 

A Chamber in the CnstU'. 



Enter Duke and Ulrick. 

DUKE, 

She loves the serf? Impossible ! 

DLRICK. 

My lord, 
"Tis true. 

DUKE. 

It cannot be! Her pride alone 
Forbids belief. More loftily, my lord. 
The stateliest of all her ancestors 
Ne'er wore his rank, than she. 

ULRICK. 

She loves the serf. 

DUKE. 

Give me some reason stronsrer than averment. 

ULRICK. 

Such I have given already. What, my liege. 
But love, such contradiction could beget .' 
When did cold sconi look, speak, and act like love ? 
Woman or man is known by fits and starts, 
More than by habits, which may be put on ; 
For those so take the judgment off its guard, 
That inmost thoughts are shown. With care for him, 
She all forgot herself. Had doubt rcmain'd, 

p2 



38 LOVE. [act III. 

It had vanish'd when assurance of his safety 
Restored collected ness, which brought with it 
Slight of the thing that, but a moment gone, 
Seem'd essence of her being. 

nUKE, 

You are right. 

'Tis the solution of the mystery, 

That with the progress of the season, comes not 

The fruit it promised ; and no sign of blight, 

Canker, or mildew, but the blossom rich 

As ever knit into the perfect fruit 

Fulfilled its pride in the crowning. Yes ; her girlhood — 

Now longer past than some would choose to own — 

Put forth a bloom hke many another's prime, 

That often then I fancied love would come. 

When her prime came nor love along with it, 

With many a suitor have I sigh'd to think 

Her breast was ne"'er intended lodge for him 

It seem'd most fitted for, and little dream'd 

The guest we missM, already Avas within. 

ULRICK. 

And never fear'd the serf.? 

DUKE. 

No. 

ULRICK. 

Was't not strange ? 

DUKE. 

Not to consider him as I did ; creature • 
Made for her pride to vent its mood upon — 
Her pride insufferable — which alone 
Seem'd fruit of her capricious womanhood. 



scKNK I.] LOVE. 37 

ULRICK. 

That foird you. 

DUKE. 

When the serf was but a boy — 

His mistress then an infant — taken with 

His forward parts, I put them to the test 

Of scholarsliip, whieli they robustly stood, 

A hundred-fold repaying cultivation. 

Nor stopp'd I there ; but, as he grew to manhood, 

Gave training to him in those exercises, 

Wherein our youths of gentle blood indulge — 

Preludes to feats in peace, and deeds in war — 

That I might boast a serf supreme in arms ; 

As many a knight unwillingly has own'd. 

Accepting challenge to make proof of him. 

ULRICK. 

What didst propose him for ? 

DUKE. 

Instructor first, 

Then page and secretary to my child. 

ULRICK. 

Instructor, didst thou say .'' Companion of 
Her hours of privacy? Her age was then — 

DUKE. 

Twelve, if I err not. — Yes ; Twelve times I then 
Had bless'd the day that gave my daughter birth. 

ULRICK. 

Her spring was mellowing into summer then, 
Young summer ! at whose genial glow, the heart 
Finds wishes and affections shooting up, 
Known but by name before, and thrills and swells 



38 LOVE. [act in. 

With rapture of the strange and plenteous verdure. 
She prospered with his aid ? 

DUKE. 

O, wond'rously. 

ULRICK. 

And loved at first her tutor ? 

DUKE. 

Much ; but soon 

A change, which grew with her, the nearer she 

Approacli'd to womanhood. Twas distance first ; 

Then suUenness ; then scorn, which she gave sway to 

Incontinent, and chiefly of those feats 

Of high address wherein he match''d the noble, 

And which it seem'd her pastime he should practise 

For recompense of aggravated spite. 

ULRICK. 

Which he endured for love ! 

DUKE. 

He dies ! That ends it. 

ULRICK, 

Yes ; confirming it 

Perhaps. Beware, sir, of a tragedy 

So deep ! Her scorn may melt at it, and help 

Her tears to keep them flowing on, until 

She weeps her life away. You must not play 

With a first passion, once it has taken root. 

For it strikes deep — to the foundations even 

Of the heart — entwining with the fibres, there. 

Of life itself, that, phick the other up. 

These haply come along. 



scEXK 1.] LOVE. 39 

DUKE. 
He shall to exile, 
Thousands of miles away, ""midst snows and deserts ! 

ULRICK. 

So may you tempt her, sir, with pity for him, 
To turn a pilgrim — take up staff and scrip. 
And follow him. IShe scorns him for the scorn 
Which others' eyes behold his station with. 
Removed from their regards, her rank unknown, 
For her rich charms were his embraces, lodge 
She'd change your palace for. 

DUKK. 

Impossible ! 

ULRICK. 

O, never did achievement rival Love's, 

For daring enterprise and execution. 

It will do miracles ; attempt such things 

As make ambition, fiery as it is, 

Dull plodding taraeness, in comparison. 

Talk of the miser's passion for his store — 

'Tis milk and water to the lover's, which 

Defies the mines of earth and caves of ocean 

To match its treasure ! Talk of height, breadth, depth — 

There is no measure for the lover''s passion, 

No bounds to what 'twill do ! 

UUKE. 

Advise me, then, 
What's best. 

ULRICK. 

Induce the serf to marry. That 

Were cure, in the end, for your fair daughter's passion ; 

Whose wound were his aggression, so resentment 



40 LOVE. [act III. 

Would blunt the edge of disappointed love. 
For, doubt not, though she ne''er espouses him. 
She trusts so far to keep him to herself, 
As that he ne'er shall pillow with another, 

DUKE. 

^Tis done. I have a bride for him, at once. 
One of his class, enfranchised by the will 
Of my cousin, who preceded me ; indeed, 
Supposed love-daughter to him, and endowed 
With wealth of his, that makes her coveted, 
As fitting mate, by men of gentle blood. 
Her humour 'tis to keep her freedom still ; 
But to my wish, as soon as known, she'll bend. 
Aware I may encoil her in the mesh 
My cousin's love or bounty freed her from. 
But say I wed the serf to Catherine, 
What profit then ? My child may still persist 
To keep her virgin state. 

ULIllCK. 

I should commit 

To Heaven the election of her husband ; — let 

The tournament determine who shall wed iier. 

DUKE. 

Thereto I have made provision in my will ; 
And further, sir, as I am due to death 
Now many a year, and momentarily 
Expect his summons, pray you keep by me 
The little space I have to tarry yet — 
For on your wisdom I have all reliance. 
Your prince, I know, will not gainsay me here. 
And when it pleaseth Heaven to leave my body 
Without the breath it has inherited 



scBNE I.] LOVE. 41 

So long, no minute lose, but take occasion 

Of the fresh Hou of sorrow in my child — 

\N hen her young heart is soften'd, and will mould 

Itself into his will, who is no more — 

To break to her, on this particular head, 

My dying testament. 

LLKICK. 

I shall remember. 

DUKE. 

So please you I shall join you with the empress, 
l.iege lady and good cousin to my child, 
Executor. 

ULRICK. 

I will discharge the trust. 

DUKE. 

My lord, send Huon to me. Question not, 
Advise me not. He marries, or he dies. 

[Ulrick goes out. 
Life spent to waste ! My pride become my shame ! 
For this I rear'd her— reared to tow'rinjj thouirhts. 
A gasp of being only left, and that 
To sigh that being has been spent in vain 
For her, last shoot of an illustrious tree ! 
I loved ray serf, was vain of him, and made 
My vanity to smile through his deserts; 
And now, their light is cloud to all my hopes. 
Through mine own pride my high aspirings fall. 
They shall not fall ! Good bye to ruth ! He dares 
To love my child — to covet her I grudged 
Surrender of to those could boast estate 
Equal to mine ! Born at my very foot. 
How durst he lift his eyes so giddy high f 
He comes. I sec ! The passion, never yet 



42 LOVE. [act hi. 

I dream'd of, stares upon me, in his look, 
His air, bis gait. 'Tis dead — or he must die ! 

Enter Huon. 
Huon ! 

HUON. 

My lord ? 

DUKE. 

I have been thinking of thee. 

HUON. 

My lord is ever good. 

DUKE. 

I have a notion 

'Twould profit thee to marry. 

HUON. 

Marry ! 

DUKE. 

Yes. 

HUON. 

T first must love. 

DUKE. 

And hast thou never loved ? 

Why art thou silent .? Wherefore holds thy tongue 

Its peace, and not thy cheek ? 

HUON. 

My cheek ! 

DUKE. 

It talks! 

A flush pass'd o'er it as I spoke to thee : 
And now it talks again — and on the ground 
Thou cast'st thine eye. "Thou first must love" — My 
friend, 



"•^^N" '•] LOVE. 43 

Thou art in love already. Art thou not ? 
Art thou not, Huon ?— Never mind, but keep 
Thy secret.— I have fix'd that thou shall marry. 

HUON. 

My lord — 

DUKE {internipting him). 
I know it will advantage thee. 
And I have lookM around ray court to find 
A partner for thee, and have lit on one. 

HUON {more eamesthj). 
My lord — 

DUKE {interrupting him afjain). 
She has beauty, Huon, she has wealth ; 
And what doth qualify her better still- 
As of unequal matches discords grow— 
She's of thy own class, Huon, she is a serf. 

Huox {impetuously). 
My lord — 

duk:e {iiUemiptinff, imlif/nantli/). 
My serf 1— How now?— Wouldst thou rebel? 

HUON. 

Hebel, my lord. 

DUKE. 

I trust I was deceived ! 
I did not see defiance in thine eye, 
And hear it on thy tongue ? Thou wouldst not dare 
So much as harbour wsh to thwart thy lord, 
Much less intent ? Thou know'st him ! k.u.w'st thyself ' 
I hou may'st have scruples— that thou canst not help ; 
But thou canst help indulging them in the face 
Of thy lord's will. And so, as 'tis my will 



44 LOVE. [act 111. 

Thou marry straight, and I have found thy match, 

I'll draw a paper up, where thou shalt make 

The proffer of thy hand to Catherine, 

And thou shalt sign it, Huon. [Writes. 

HUON. 

'That I were dead ! 

O, what is death, compared to slavery ! 

13rutes may bear bondage — they were made for it, 

When Heaven set man above them ; but no mark. 

Definite and indelible, it put 

Upon one man to mark him from another, 

That he should live his slave. O heavy curse ! 

To have thought, reason, judgment, feelings, tastes, 

Passions, and conscience, like another man. 

And not have equal liberty to use them, 

But call his mood their master ! Why was I born 

With passion to be free — with faculties 

To use enlargement — with desires that cleave 

To high achievements — and with sympathies 

Attracting me to objects fair and noble, — 

And yet with power over myself as little 

As any beast of burden ? Why should I live? 

There are of brutes themselves that will not tame. 

So high in them is nature ; — whom the spur 

And lash, instead of curbing, only chafe 

Into prouder mettle ; — that will let you kill them, 

Ere they will suffer you to master them. 

I am a man, and live ! 

DUKE. 

Here, Huon, sign, 

And Catherine is your wife, 

HUON. 

I will not sign. 



SCENE I.] LOVE. 4'» 

ULKK. 



llow now, my serf ! 



HUON. 



My lord, I am a man ; 

And, as a man, owe duty higher far 

Than that I owe to thee, which Heaven expects 

That I discharge. Didst thou command me murder, 

Steal, commit perjury, or even lie, — 

Should I do it, though thy serf? No ! To espouse her, 

Not loving her, were murder of her peace. 

I will not sign for that ! With like default. 

To compass mastery of her effects, 

Were robbery. 1 will not sign for that ! 

To swear what I must swear to make her mine. 

Were perjury at the very altar. Therefore 

I will not sign ! To put forth plea of love, 

Which not a touch of love bears witness to, 

Were uttering a lie. And so, my lord, 

I will not sign at all ! — O, good my liege, 

My lord, my master, ask me not to sign ! 

My sweat, my blood, use without sparing ; but 

Leave me my heart — a miserable one 

Although it be I Coerce me not in that, 

To make me do the thing my heart abhors ! 

1 beg no more ! 

[T7ie Duke draics his sicord^ and resolntchj approaches 
HuoN. At the same minute the Counte.ss 
enters^ unperceived, and stops short. 

DUKE. 

Huon, I love thee, 

And would not do thee harm, unless compcll'd. 

Thou shouldst not play with me, and shalt not. Take, 

Therefore, thy choice — death, or the paper. 



46 LOVE. [act III. 

HT'ON. 

Death ! 

DUKE. 

Thou makest thy mind up quickly, in a strait. 

HUON. 

I do not wish to live. 

[Opens his vest, takes the point of the Duke's sword, 
and places it ojiposite his heart. 
Set here thy point ; 
'Tis right against my heart ! Press firm and straight ; 
The more, the kinder ! [A pause 

DUKK. 

As thou wishest death, 

I will not kill thee for thy disobedience. 

An hour I grant for calm reflection. Use it. 

If, on the lapse of that brief space, I find 

The page without addition, thou raay'st learn 

That even slavery hath its degrees, 

Which make it sometimes sweet. Our felons throng 

The galleys ; but 'tis hard, or we shall find 

A bench and oar for thee. \_He goes out. 

HUON. 

My lord, come back ! 

My lord ! What now my mind, be sure 'twill be 

At the end of the hour ! of the day ! of my hfe ! — My 

lord! 
He does not hear, or will not. Most sweet cause 
Of most insufferable misery, 

Wouldst thou not weep at this? Couldst thou look on, 
And keep pride sitting in thy Avoman"'s eye — 
The proper throne of pity — which for me, 
The melting queen has yet refused to fill, 



SCENE I.] LOVE. 17 

But to a stern usurper all abandon'd ! 

Wouklst thou not weep ? Or would my name alone — 

My sole condition set ""gainst all myself ; 

The vivid thoughts, the feelings sensitive, 

The quick affections, passions of a man. 

Despite his misery of birthright ; flesh, ' 

Warm, warm; of as high vitality as tho' 

His lot had been an heirdom to a throne — 

Would that, prevailing 'gainst such odds as these. 

Prevent thee ? Yes ! Thou wouldst not weep for me. 

(), knew I what would make thee ! Would niy corpse ? 

Then to thy fatlier ! own my passion for thee. 

Tell him his serf aspires to love his daughter. 

Boasts of it, tho' he sends him to the galleys, 

Will glory in it, chained beside the felon. 

Ay, with the tasker 's whip whirling above him. 

Reiterate it, when he threatens me. 

And when again he threatens, justify it, 

On the broad rights of common human nature. 

Till with his own hand he transfixes me ! 

[ Following/ the Duke. 

COUNTESS {interposing). 
Stop, Huon ! — What's the matter ? 

HI JON. 

Huon — Huon ! 

Didst thou say Huon — and with gentleness? 

Matlam — my mistress — I am your slave ! — I am nothing 

lUit the poor serf! 

COUNTFSS. 

See if that door is free 
From listeners. 

HUON {ffoivff to the door). 
There is no one here. 



48 LOVE. [act III. 

COUKTESS. 
Come in, 
And shut it again. 



'Tis shut. 



HUON. 



COUNTESS. 



Now, what's the matter 
With my father and you ? 

HUON. 

He bade me sign that paper, 
And I refused. 

COUNTESS. 

What is it ? Let me see it. 

HUON (Jiands the pajMr^ and watches the Countess tchile she 

reads). 
How her eye fastens on the writing — seems 
To grasp it, as her hand the paper ! What ! 
Did she start ? She did ! O, wherefore ? — What is this ? 
Her sweet face, that just now was all a calm. 
Shows signs of brooding tempest ! Yes, 'tis on — 
Lowers on her brow, and flashes on her cheek, 
Like cloud and lightning. How her bosom heaves ! 
What makes it heave ? She has let the paper drop, 
Yet there she stands as tho** she held it yet ! 
And where but now all was astir — now, all 
Again is stillness ! Dare I speak to her ? 
She is not like to faint — no — no — she breathes! 
Her haughty spirit wakes in her again, 
Towering, alas ! as ne"'er it did before. 

countess {after a violent struggle, giving way). 
Huon, T die ! 



""=-'*'^ 'J LOVE. 49 

HUON. 

Heavens ! — .Mercy ! 

COUNTESS {bursting into tears). 
It is over. 

Do not speak to me ! Let my tears flow on ! 

HUON. 

Flow they for me? 

COUNTESS. 

I told you not to speak. 

HUON. 

Sweet Heaven ! your voice is tears ; 

Your looks are tears : your air, your motions, all 

Are tears ! floods ! floods ! to those that course your cheeks, 

And fall more briaht than diamonds on the hands 

Which now I clasp to thee in supplication, 

That thou wilt deign this once vouchsafe me audience, 

lb give my fatal passion vent before thee— 

For years pent up within my wretched breast — 

And then Vm mute for ever ! 

COUNTESS. 

Huon, peace — 

I know thou lov'st me. 

HUON. 

Thou know'st it, dost thou ? 

And say'st it !— and mildly say'st it ! 

Not with a tone of scorn, not with a threat, 

Nor accent yet of cold indifference 

For the poor serf, who, body, soul, and all, 

Not being worth a tithe of thee, yet dares 

To love thee !— daros to « ish for thee .'—yes, wish, 

Altho' he knows thee out of reach of him, 

As the sun !— as the stars— a million, million times 

E 



50 LOVE. [act III. 

Beyond the sun ! The poor despised serf, 

Despised of himself — of thee — of every one — 

Thou see'st he loves thee, and thou deign'st to say it ! 

Say it with pity — with most tender pity ! 

BehoWst him kneeling at thy feet, and know'st 

The passion throws him there, and suffer'st him 

To stay there I — Let him die there ! Let him die 

At thy feet ! [ Falls at her feet. 

COUNTESS. 

Rise, Huon ! — Huon ! — Hear'st thou me ? 
And dost thou not obey me ? Wilt thou not ? 
Listen to me ! — I do entreat thee, Huon, 
As thou dost love me, rise ! 

HUON {rising to his knee). 
Again ! " As thou dost love me, Huon ! " And thy voice did 

sound 
As 'twere the voice of one that loved ag^ain ! 
Thou start"'st at that ! and terror all at once 
Looks from the eyes, whence something look'd before 
I 'dgive the vision of my own to see there 
But for one other moment, so it set 
My soul ablaze with hope ! — Can I believe it, 
My arm encircles thee ! 

COUNTESS (ivith dignity). 
Remove it. 

HUON. 

Heaven ! 

Thou changest ? — Yes ! — Thou art returning fast 

To what thou wast before. 

COUNTESS. 

No, Huon — but 

Obey me — kneel no longer at my feet, 



SCENE I.] LOVE. 

But rise. It pleaseth me thou dost my will. 
Huon, wilt do my will ? 

HUON. 

Wilt do thy will? 

It is the nature of my blood as much 

As its colour-current ! In thy every mood, 

I will obey thee, lady. 

COUNTESS. 

Promise me 

Though do the thing I bid the 

^^'hat is it ? 



51 



ec. 

HUON. 



COUNTESS. 

Promise me first, and then Til name it to thee. 
Huon, wilt do the thing I wish ? 

HUON. 

I will. 

COUNTESS. 

But swear thou 'It do it. 

HUON. 

Yes. What shall I swear bv ? 



Thy love for me. 



ear by 

COUNTESS. 



HUON. 

Then, by my love for thee, 

I'll do the thing thou bidd'st me. 

COUNTESS. 

Sign the paper ! — 

'I'lmu art about to speak-but don't-don't, Huon, 
As thou wouldst not offend me; as 'twould grieve me- 
won't say, anger me-thou shouldst offend me. 

e2 



52 LOVE. [act III. 

Listen ! I'll bear that thou shouldst love me, if 
Thou signest — else command thee ever from me. 
Wilt thou not ? Speak not — give me acts, not words. 
Or sign it, or begone ! 

HUON. 

I '11 keep my word, 

And so do both. [Takes paper to table, and peruses if. 

Enter Attendant. 

COUNTESS {to Attendant). 
Is Catherine in the castle ? 
If not, go to her house, and bring her hither. 

ATTENDANT. 

She is in the castle. Now she enter'd it. 

COUNTESS. 

Conduct her to my chamber. Stay. IMy chaplain — 

Tell him, and do it straight, to wait me in 

The chapel.~ Tarry, See that the chapel else 

Is clear — make sure of it. That ascertain'd, 

Take post at the door, and mind that none do enter. 

Except the serf and the two ladies that 

Shall follow him. I shall be one. A mouse 

Besides, thou diest ! \^Exit Attendant. 

HUON {signs paper). 
It is sign'd — Farewell ! [^Going. 

COUNTESS. 

Stay ! — To the full thou must redeem thy pledge. 
Unless thou marriest, it is not sign'd. 
The paper is but air, the ink but water. 
Without fulfilling of the written deed ; 
And thou dost juggle with me shamefully, 
Saying thou lovest me, and for thy oath 



8CKNK i.\ LOVE. 53 

Staking tliy love, and leaving all undone 

As thou hadst sworn by nothing. Thou art bound 

To marry Catherine, which doing not, 

Thou dost not love nie, — thou art not a man. 

HUON. * 

I am indifferent to what I do. 

All things of earth are now the same to me ; 

Good, bad, love, hate, wrong, kindness, life or death. 

What hour you please, I'll marry Catherine. [Going. 

COUNTESS. 

Now ! [Stopping him. 

This very moment ! She will meet thee in 
The chapel, whither thou must straight repair. 
Thou wilt ? 

HUON. 

I will. 

COUNTESS. 

The chaplain thou wilt find 
Expecting thee — and, if he be not come 
Already, still he will be sure to come. 
Thou wilt not juggle with me ? 

HUON. 

No. 

COUNTESS. 

Thou darest not — 

I mean, thou darest not but respect thine oath. 

HUON. 

I'll keep it, madam. — Then, farewell for ever ! [Aside. 

[^Goes out. 

COUNTESS. 

'Tis done ! [Sinks into a chair. 



54 LOVE. [act ni. 

Enter Duke. 

DUKE. 

Where's Huon ? 

COUNTESS. 

Gone to do thy will. 

DUKE. 

Who work'd this miracle ? I never dream'd 
He would conform to it ! Who workM it ^ 

COUNTESS. 

I. 

DUKE. 

Thou ? 

COUNTESS {giving him the paper). 
There. 

DUKE. 

My child ! Thou art thy father's child, 
My proud child still ! Where is he ? 

COUNTESS. 

In the chapel, 

By this. The chaplain waits upon him there. 

Catherine is in my room, expecting me. 

So please you, sir, since I have helpM the match 

Thus far, I'll e'en overlook the ceremony. 

DUKE. 

Do so. 

My barque no more is fit for sea ; 

A ripple threatens it with foundering, 

Almost 'tis founder'd now. Did Huon tell thee 

How he withstood me ? 

COUNTESS. 

All is known to me. 

But pray you, for the sake of Catherine, 



sciNE I.] LOVE. 55 

Grant him his freedom. . 'Tis not meet her hiisbaiul 
Should drag the cliain hath been unloosed from her. 

DUKE. 

This dcKunient accomplishes your wish, 
£""611 now prepared to win him to my purpose. 
I give it freely, for I love the boy ; 
Ay, now entirely love him ! See him married ; 
And may he plight a happy, happy troth 
To her he weds ! My child, I am ftiiling fast. 
'Tis time — don't heed ! — go to the chapel — and 
My blessing on the errand takes thee thither. 

Enter Attendant. 
Ha ! — you are come in time, sir ! I shall need 
Your help to my chamber. Tell the boy, I bless him ! 
Come hither, bless thee, too ! And bless the work 
Thou goest to do ! While 1 remember it, 
Regard Count Ulrick as thy father's friend. 
One of his household now, with sanction of 
The Prince of iNIilan. I am very feeble ! 
'Must to my chamber ! 

COUNTESS {rushinff towards him, and kncelhuj). 
Bless me again ! my father ! 

DUKE. 

Again, my child ?— Again ! ^Blessing her. 

Heaven bless thee! It is wiser — better knows 

Thy good — can better help thee to't— ay ! 

Better than thy father ! May it bless thee, then, 

And be its will, before thy father's, done ! {_Goes out. 

COUNTESS. 

Now, fail not Catherine, and the die is cast ! iGoes out. 



56 LOVE. [act III. 

SCENE II. 

The Corridor of the Castle. 

Enter Sir Conrad. 

SIR CONRAD. 

What calls the chaplain to his sacred post, 
And why this privacy ? About to pass 
The porch, I was admonish'd 'twas forbid 
To all to enter ! 'Tis no day of fast. 
No hour of customary rites ! 'Tis nought 
To me. I only wonder at its strangeness. 

SIR RUPERT (entering). 
Where is the Prince of Milan ? 

SIR CONRAD. 

In the court-yard — 

Unless departed thence this moment. 

SIR RUPERT. 

Find him, 

And bring him to the chamber of the duke. 
If on your way you meet the duke's physician, 
In search of whom I go, he, too, is summon'd. 
And tell him so. 

SIR CONRAD. 

Why, what's the matter ? 

SIR RUPERT. 

Woe! 

The duke ! — the duke ! — No question, but away ! 



■ciNK III.] LOVE. 57 

SCENE III. 

Chamber of the Countess. 

Enter Christina and the Countess's Maid. 

CHRISTINA. 

My mistress niarrv lluon .'' 

Even so ! 

Now hand in hand with him before the priest ; 

Unless the knot be tied already — said 

The blessing and amen. 

CHRISTINA. 

No bridemaid .'' 

MAID. 

Yes, 
My lady. 

CHRISTINA. 

What ! the Countess ! bridemaid she 
To Catherine that was before a serf ! 
Yet she was ever fond of Catherine. 

MAID. 

You should have seen them both as forth they went, 
Like two sweet sisters for the altar vcil'd. 

CHRISTINA. 

A sudden marriage this ! 

MAID. 

And lonely, too; 

None but the principals admitted — friends 

Nor attendants ! 

CHRISTINA. 

It is strange ! Well. Huon gets 

A wealthy wife — a frecwoman, to boot ; 



58 LOVE. [act in. 

And, sooth to say, a worthy husband, she — 
Ay, were she better still — for many a prince 
Looks not his rank so Aveli as Huon would 
Were he one. Softly — they return — yes. 

MAID. 

No; 

My mistress comes alone. How slow she moves ! 

Enter the Covi^T ess Jaint, her Maid runs to support her. 

COUNTESS. 

Help to untie me, girl. I cannot lift 
My hand to my head — and I want air ! Remove 
My veil. There ! Now I breathe ! — A minute only 
And all the world seems changed. Is this my room ? 
Art thou my waiting-maid? — Am I myself? 
Where is my father? 

MAID. 

In his chamber, lady. 
He is complaining, 

COUNTESS. 

He is very old. 

His life spun out into a very film. 

I did not gainsay him ! Thank Heaven for that ! 

I would that I could go to him, but 'faith 

My limbs have done their best to bring me hither. 

I am next to dead ; almost dissolved to nothing. 

Is that Christina .'' Girl, what do you here ? 

Home with all haste ; your mistress there before you 

Waits your assistance with most instant need. 

CHRISTINA. 

It is all wonder. 

COUNTESS. 

Art thou gone.'' 



SCENE HI.] LOVE. 59 

CHRISTINA. 

I am. 



[Coitrtsies and goes out. 
Count Ulrick enters. 

ULIUCK. 



Madam ! 



COUNTESS. 

Count Ulrick, is it you ? I am glad 
To see you, sir; my father told me, or 
I dreamt it, he designed to take you, sir, 
Into his service. If 'tis so, Tm glad of it. 

ULRICK. 

I grieve to think my office was a brief one ! 

COUNTESS. 

Your office was a brief one .'—Speak !— alas ! 
AVhen silence is a substitute for speech 
The heart must be o'er full of joy or pain ! 
Enough. I read your errand in your looks— 
I am an orphan. 

ULRICK. 

Madam, 'twas a debt 
Long due to nature. 

COUNTESS. 

Still, sir, we must grieve 

To see it paid. At what a time to leave me ! 

I cannot pay him half his dues of sorrow. 

My heart is spent .'—benumbed ! this shaft of Fato 

Lights on a coqise !— a corpse .' Alas, niy father ! 

lA pause— Enter Attendant, hastUi/. 

ATTENDANT. 

Madam ! 



60 LOVE. [act in. 

ULRICK. 

JCeep silence ! Do not interrupt 

The sacred flow of sorrow for the dead. 

COUNTESS. 

No ; let him speak ; there"'s matter in his looks. 

ATTENDANT. 

The banquet, as you ordered, is prepared, 
But neither bride nor bridegroom can be found. 

COUNTESS. 

You mean the bride cannot be found ! 

ATTENDANT. 

Nor yet 

The bridegroom. 

COUNTESS. 

Search for him, and you will find him — 

Must find him ! [Attendant goes out. 

What a cross ! at what a time ! 
When all my thoughts should be with him that's gone ! 
My father ! I did love my father, sir : 
Indeed, I did ! 

ULRICK. 

Then let me now fulfil 

His last behest, whereof the substance this, 

At length recorded here — which he enjoin'd 

You should be instantly possessed of — proof 

Of his most fatherly regard and care. 

Of those who seek your hand you must make choice 

Of one to share the labours of the dukedom. 

Or else abide the issue of the lists — 

Your suitors summon'd to a tournament — 

When he who rests the victor wins your hand. 



SCENE III.] LOVE. 61 

COUNTESS. 

I am content! I'll do my father's will, 

And bide the issue of the tournament, 

Or choose myself the man shall take my hand. 

ULRICK. 

Jointly the Empress and myself are named 
Executors, to give the will effect. 

COUNTESS. 

It was not needed. It had been respected 
Without o'erlooking, how much less enforcement ! 
My brain and heart are here and there ! — I haven't 
The use of them. Some one did tell me now 
Of something — what was it ? 

ULKICK. 

One said the serf — 

COUNTESS. 

Call him that name again ! M'hom speak'st thou of ? 
Huon ? 

ATTENDANT {entering). 

This letter is from Huon, madam. 
Mounted upon a steed, your father's gift, 
lie throw it me, and fled. 

COUNTESS {readintj). 
" Eternally 

Farewell — your will is done — I use my freedom. 

Fortune my mistress hence — the richest boon 

She can award me, death ! — One more farewell ! " 

O rashness most perverse and ruinous ! 

Let them pursue him ; and provide them with 

The fleetest of the stud, and gold beside. 

For new relays. If they oVrtake him — if — 

They must ! — 'tis an aff'air of life or death ! 

They must not quit him, but return with him — 



62 LOVE. [act III. 

ATTENDANT. 

The bride— 

COUNTESS. 

No heed of her. Bring Huon back 
By fair means or by foul — persuasion lost, 
Let them resort to force — but not to harm 
A hair of his bead. So be their numbers such 
As makes resistance idle. They are sure 
To track him, so they lose not time — and see 
They do not ! If they waste a moment only. 
They answer for't. Stay, sir ! a purse of gold 
To every one of them — of gold, you mark — 
So that they bring him back; and one for you 
In like event. A minute hence, observe, 
I look into the court-yard, and expect 
To see them in their saddles, and away ! 
Upon their lives I charge them bring him back ! 

[They go out. 



END OP ACT III. 



8CKNB I.] LOVE. 



G3 



ACT IV. 

SCENE I. 
llie Gardm of the Castle. 



Enter Sir Rupert and Sir Conrad. 

SIR RUPERT. 

Time is the same. 'Tis our condition's changed. 

The hours hang weary-heavy on our hands : 

We scarce could catch when Catlierine was here, 

They went so fleetly by us. Then the death 

Of the duke hath left a blank, which, while he lived, 

Light offices, with grateful tasks fill'd up. 

Forbade our spirits flag. 

SIR CONRAD. 

Eventful day. 

The day he died ! Eventful day to us ! 

Our Catherine married Huon then, and fled ; 

And Huon fled, avoiding Catlierine ; 

Nor since of either tidings— though for him 

Almost the world was search'd. Strange, loathing him 

As she did, with hate almost unnatural, 

How much to heart the Countess took his flight. 



SIR RUPERT. 



Ay, as a gentle stream would take a rock. 
Suppose one suddenly cast into it, 
Damming its channel up, and making foam, 
^^ here all before went crystal, without ripple. 
But such as notcth gliding. Yes, 'twas strange. 



64 LOVE. [act IV. 

SIR CONEAD. 

'Twas very strange. 

SIR KUPERT. 

'Twas one of certain things 

We see, yet question that we see, yet there 

We know they are. 

SIR CONRAD. 

She pines for loss of hira. 

SIR RUPERT. 

No, sir ; she takes to heart her father's will, 
Compelling her to choose a husband, or 
Accept of him the tournament may send her. 
And so, she keeps alone ; to all forbidding 
Approach to hei', except this youth, who sits 
In Huon's place, her secretary now, 
The forward cousin of fair Catherine. 

SIR CONRAD. 

Strange, Catherine should fly, and Huon too ! 
That each should purpose, what, if known to each, 
Had one accomplished, had sufficed for both, 
To shun the consummation of the rites ! 
Strange, that the Duke that very day should die ! 

SIR RUPERT. 

Untimely was the Duke's decease for us — 
Prevented by his death from profiting 
By the fair opening which the turbulent 
And wild Bohemians for our lances made. 
We could not take the field ; and, lo, the war, 
Ere well commenced, is done ; concluded too 
By single combat, and the conqueror 
A knight unknown till now, whose championship 
Had graced the proudest days of chivalry : 



SCENE I.] LOVE. 65 

Of presence noble as his deeds are lofty, 
By that confirming what hv these he won — 
The favour of the Empress. Yonder comes 
The secretary. 

SIR COXRAD. 

Ay, 'tis he. 

SIR RUPKRT. 

I fear 

He laughs at us to give us hopes, as still 

You know he does, that one of us shall vet 

Make wife of Catherine. A forward spark ! 

I hate a stripling that's so much the man ; 

It shows like aping. He grows worse and worse, 

Since he hath got his office. For the sake 

Of Catherine, alone, I bear with him. 

SIR CONRAD. 

He is like her ; never brother more like sister. 
I have a word to say to you anon, 
Touching to-morrow, when the tournament 
Decides who weds the Countess, she declining 
To choose a mate herself. 

CATHERINE {iritlinut. very loud). 
Ho! holloa! 

SIR RUPERT. 

Ho! [Catherine f'w^^rjf. 

Why call you, sir, so loud ? 

CATHERINE. 

To make you hear 

News, sirs, from Catherine ! Shall I w hisper it ? 

IShe is coming ! 

SIR RUPERT. 

So you told us months ago. 

CATHERINE. 

\\ ell, when she comes she"'ll be the welcomer ! 



\ 



06 LOVE. [act IV. 

SIR CONRAD. 
I"*]! wait for her no longer. 

CATHERINE. 

Wait for her ? 

! aj'^ ! a man may wait, and wait in vain. 

1 wait for a wife ; though the odds are ten to one, 
As I'm a man, I'll die a bachelor. 

Do you know the signs of one ? 

SIR CONRAD. 

No ; what are they ? 

CATHERINE. 

O, various ; but the chief, a cautious eye, 

And calculating. He that scans a fence, 

Doth seldom make a clever leap of it ; 

Nine times in ten he balks his spring, and falls 

In the ditch ; while he who takes it at a glance, 

Goes flying over. Women are shrewd imps ! 

Behoves a man he thinks not of their pockets, 

When he is looking in their faces ; for, 

Wear he his eye ever so languishingly. 

They'll find he's only working at a sum 

In arithmetic. Sir Rupert, let me see 

Your face! Don't look so sullen at me. Who 

Can see the sun if he's behind a cloud ? 

That's right. I would not say, but when the woman 

Kind heaven intends for wife to you shall come, 

You'll marry her. 

sill CONRAD. 

What say you of my face .'' 

CATHERINE. 

The same I say of his. By my honour, sirs ! 
Though I may pass for an astrologer, 
I never yet, believe me, made pretence 



scENK I.] LOVE. 67 

To read the stars ; nor am I adopt yet 
In palmistry ; nor have I studied signs 
As lucky or unlucky omens ; yet 
Things can 1 tell before they come to pass. 

SIR CON R An. 
But shall 1 die a bachelor ? 

CATHERINE. 

You will, 

Unless it chance, upon a certain day. 

In a certain month, in such or such a year — 

At present which is doubtful, but as sure 

As time doth run 'twill come — you get a wife! 

Now, there's a puzzle for you ; make it out, 

And tell it me; and then Til tell it you. 

If you are in the right. Your lot is cast 

In mystery ; but. for Sir Rupert, his 

Is plain ; 'tis right before me : I can tell 

The year, the month, the week, the day, almost 

The very hour, he will be married, or — 

Not married ! yet am I no conjuror. 

Where is Sir Otto ? 

SIR CONRAD. 

We are going to his hovise ; 
He waits for us. 

CATHERINE. 

I'll follow. News wait I 
From Catherine ; I'll bring it, if it comes. 
Nay, sirs, beseech you, l(X)k not thus upon me 
With eyes of marvel. On my word ! indeed, 
And by my honour, — and, if nothing else 
Will satisfy you, though 1 have ta'en an oath 
'Gainst swearing, I will give it on my oath — 
I am no conjuror ! Another word : 

f2 



68 LOVE. [act IV. 

What I have told you, tell not, as you love me. 
Lest I should pay for it by flood or faggot ! 
Upon my life, sirs, I am no conjuror ! 

[ 77/ r?/ f/o out. seiner ally. 



SCENE II. 
A Room in the Castle, 

Enter Ulrick. 

ULRICK. 

At length — the day almost arrived that brings 

The tournament, whose issue brings to her 

A consort for her state — she yields me audience. 

Is it for loss of Huon she has pined, 

And kept herself forbiddingly alone ? 

If so, why give his hand to Catherine ? 

This is a mystery, the which the more 

I try to sound, the deeper doth it grow ; 

While surmise after surmise rises, as 

Report succeeds report of high exploits 

Achieved by this unknown adventurer, 

Who now stands next the Empress chief in place. 

That even he and Huon are the same I 

Should it be so, and he should come along, 

M^'hat then the issue of her meeting with him ? 

This I revolve, and with a troubled heart, 

That sees no end to its perplexity. [^Looks off. 

How changed she is ! Her fiery eye is quench'd ! 

Her head its haughty carriage hath abated, 

Her cheek is beggared of its prideful flush. 

Enter Countess {a parchment in her hand). 

COUNTESS. 

I have perused the testament, my lord, 



SCENE 1 1. J LOVE. 69 

Carefully, word for word, and see no mention, 
Either directly or by implication, 
Touching the quality of him may win me. 

ULRICK. 

No, none is made ; a slight omission only. 

COUNTESS. 

Yet space enough to let my will creep through. 
You say, my lord, you have made proclamation 
Of this fair passage far and wide? 

ULRICK. 

I have. 

COUNTESS. 

And now expect the Empress ? 

ULIUCK. 

Yes. 

COUNTESS. 

And with her ? 

ULRICK. 

The noblest of her court ; a glorious crowd; 
Among the rest, her favourite ; that youth 
With whose exploits the wondering realm resounds, 
Who, in so brief a space, without a name. 
Has made himself the noblest which the tongue 
Of hio-h renown rinfjs out. 

COUNTESS. 

That youth ! what youth ? 

ULIUCK. 

A young adventurer, of whom it seems 
Fair fortune is enamour'd — gives him all 
He asks ! 

COUNTESS. 

1 never heard of him before. 

ULRICK. 

So please you, madam, you forget till now. 



70 LOVE. [act IV. 

Since that your father died and Huon fled, 
Save your new secretary, you have deign 'd 
With none vouclisafe communing. 

COUXTESS. 

You are right. 

I have forgot the world, time, everything ! 

What is this favourite called ? 

ULRICK. 

His titles change 

So fast — the former almost new as its 

Successor — scarce I know now his present style. 

COUNTESS. 

His name 1 mean. 

ULRICK. 

His name I know not, madam, 

COUNTESS. 

What moves my heart, so leaden-dull before ? 

Why did it leap at mention of the stranger? [Aside. 

Has he been seen by any whom we know, 

Any of our vassals', chiefs, or friends ? 

ULRICK. 

I have met 

With none of these have seen him. 

COUNTESS {abstractedly). 
Happy woman I 

ULKICK. 

Madam ( 

COUNTESS. 

The Empress is a happy woman. 
She can reward desert, ennoble it. 

ULRICK. 

So in this instance hath her highness done 
With such profusion of munificence, 



srKNK I.] LOVE. 71 

There are not wanting those wlio think she sees 
Less witli an empress' than a woman's eyes, 
And means her bounties but as costly heralds, 
Po<^)r to the costlier comer they forerun. 

COUNTESS. 

What I means she to espouse him ? 

ULRICK. 

'Tis surmised. 

Matter to wonder at, yet justified. 

For they report him of a presence noble, 

As e'er bespoke a man to challenge honour. 

COUNTESS. 

I never dreamt of an abyss so hideous — 
And to be standing on the very brink on't ! 

ULRICK (alarmed at her vehemence). 
Madam ! 

COUNTESS, 

Ay ! what's the matter ? (Aside.) I am frighten'd 

At myself! (Aloud.) My lord, my spirits are so dreamy. 

Things which are not, I see — which are, see not ! 

Pray do not heed me. For this tournament. 

Thus near without obstruction on my part 

Hath it approached, but pray you keep in mind 

On what condition ; that at any time 

The husband it awards, revoltmg to me, 

I am at liberty to make a choice 

Between a husband and the cloister. So ! 

I'll read the will again. [_Sits dowv arid reads. 

STEPHEN (entering hastili/). 
News ! news ! my lord. 

ULRICK. 

What is it ? - 



72 LOVE. [act IV. 

STEPHEN. 

Huon ! 

COUNTESS. 

Ha! 

Well, what of Huon, is he found.'' 

STEPHEN. 

He is. 

COUNTESS. 

Propitious Heaven, at what a time ! where is he ? 

STEPHEN. 

In the suite of the Empress. 

COUNTESS. 

Well, — go on ! 

STEPHEN. 

I saw him ! More. That sun of chivalry 
Hath suddenly blazed forth in the brief war 
So late gone by and dazzled friends and foes — 
The favVite of the Empress — 

COUNTESS. 

Well ? Go on ! 

STEPHEN, 

— Huon and he are one. 

COUNTESS. 

1 was sure of it ! 

Send him away. \_S1ie staggers to a seat, Ulrick supports her. 

ULRICK. 

Hence, sir. [Stephen goes out. 

COUNTESS. 

Don't wonder at me ! Don't ! 
Nor question me, whate'er I say or do ! 
Listen and do my bidding. I prepare 
To give reception to the Empress, — thou 



scKNE III.] LOVE. 7.1 

»See lliion. Tell liim 1 would speak with him 

Soon as occasion serves ; or let him make 

Occasion, and at once — at once, my lord ! 

(Aside.) Where shall we meet ? In the garden ? No : the 

garden 
Is overlook'd. In the library ? No; 
We may be subject to intrusion there. 
W hat should prevent his coming to my closet ? 
What place so fit? Why think of any other? 
{Aloud.) My lord, bring Huon to my closet. Huon ! 
The favourite of the Empress I should say. 

[The Countess and U lr\ck r/o out severally. 



SCENE III. 

Sir Otto's House. 

Enter Sir Otto, Sir Conrad, and Sir Rupert. 

SIR OTTO. 

'Tis slight of fortune not to take the chance 
She proffers ; since the lists must open, sirs, 
To every lance, why not adventure ours. 
With such a prize ? Wait you for Catherine. 
I'm for the tournament. 

SIR CONRAD. 

And so am I. 

This secretary is a subtle spark. 

He has harp'd upon our suit to Catherine, 

Awaken'd hopes we had given o'er as dead. 

And pledged himself with oaths she would return 

Free, as she ne'er had plighted troth to Huon, 

.\nd yet she comes not. What we take in eaniest, 

Be sure he only gives in mockery. 



74 LOVE. [act IV. 

SIR OTTO. 

I'm of your counsel, and will break a lance 
To-morrow for the Countess. 

SIR RUPERT. 

Do so, sir. 

I break no lance except for Catherine. 

Catherine {entering disguised as a man). 

CATHERINE. 

Who talks of breaking lances ? 

SIR otto. 
Ha ! our friend 
The Secretary. 

SIR CONRAD. 

Well sir, what's your news .'' 
Where 's Catherine ? 

CATHERINE. 

Absorbed in solving, sir, 
A knotty point. 

SIR CONRAD. 

A knotty point ; what is't ? 

CATHERINE. 

The measure of a lover's patience, sir. 

SIR OTTO. 

Does she not come ? 

CATHERINE. 

Not till that point is solved. 

Now, could you solve it for her, she might come 

The sooner. 

SIR OTTO. 

'Tis an hour. 

SIR CONRAD. 

A day. 



SCENE 111.1 LOVE. 75 

SIR OTTO. 
A week. 

SIR CONRAD. 

A month. 

SIR OTTO. 

A year. 

CATHERINE (to SlU RuPEKt). 

AVill you not make a guess .'' 

SIR RUPERT (sif/hint/). 
It is a life ! 

CATHERINE. 

CarA you go further, sir .'* 

Try if you can. Lovers do miracles : 

'Tis said they do, I never saw them though, 

Nor met with those that did. 

SIR OTTO. 

Where is our mistress ? 

CATHERINE. 

Here, 

Where"'er she is ; or nowhere, v\here you arc. 
Have you a mistress, there your mistress is, 
Were she at one end of the world and you 
At the other. 

SIR RUPERT. 

Ay, were she in another world ! 

CATHERINE. 

Why what's the matter with Sir Rupert .'* Is 
The gentleman gone mad ? I think myself 
A sterling lover, but I take no oath, 
Except to flesh and bloo<l. Sir Rupert, whatV 
Your thouirht of a mistress ? 



76 LOVE. [act IV. 

SIR KUPERT. 
A vitality 

Precious, peculiar, not to be supplied ; 
Once with your being joined, a part of it 
For ever ! 

CATHEUINE. 

Humph i and you believe. Sir Rupert, 
You have met with such a thing ? 

SIR RUPERT. 



I have. 
And where? 
In Catherine. 



CATHERINE. 



SIR RUPERT. 



CATHERINE. 

Heaven help the man, he speaks 

As if he thought himself in earnest, sirs. 

Whom said he now he'd break a lance for ? 

SIR CONRAD and SIR OTTO. 

Her. 

CATHERINE. 

For Catherine, poor man ! far better break 
A lance for the Countess; as the lists, they say, 
Are open to all challengers that bear 
The rank of knighthood. 

SIR OTTO. 

So they are, and we 

Design to try our fortune, and lament 

Not to find Sir Rupert of our mind. 

CATHERINE. 

That mortifies you, does it .'' So, Sir Rupert, 
\\^ill you make suit again to Catherine, 



scKNE iir] LOVE. 77 

Say she comes back again, released from her 
Enforced vow ? 

sill RUPERT. 

Will 1 make suit to her ? 

Aly heart is ever lying at her feet. 

cathi:kine. 
Tis neighbour then, to an ungainly shoe. 
She has broken her ancle, and the awkward leech 
Who set it for her made a botch of it. 
Her foot 's awry ; she limps ; her taper waist, 
So straight before when she moved, goes zig-zag now. 
Give your heart joy, sir, of its pleasant seat. 

SIR RUPERT. 

The gait and shape of gentle Catherine 
Are in her heart, no fracture warping there. 

SIR OTTO. 

With what a serious face you play the cheat. 

CATHERINE. 

Sir, I look serious at a serious thing. 

SIR CONRAD. 

It is not as you say .'' 

CATHERINE. 

Jielieve 'tis not ; 

But take this with you, I should be more grieved 

Than you would, to disparage Catherine. 

SIR OTTO. 

So Catherine doth halt ? 

SIR CONRAD. 

My love doth halt. 

SIH OTTO. 

And so doth mine. 



78 LOVE. [act IV. 

CATHERINE. 

1 liave not told him all. 

SIR OlTO. 

What, is there more to come ? 

CATHERINE. 

Listen — you'll hear. 

So sir, you make retainers of your eyes, [To Sir Rupert. 

Nor feast at the same table, but eschew 

Their homely fare, though men as noble deem 

A well-turu'd leg a dainty, let that pass ; 

But ffive not me a mistress with a fair 

Transparent skin, that you can see beneath 

Tracer}^ costlier than veins of gold 

Suppose they lay in bed of alabaster; 

It never stands the weather. 

sir otto. 
Is she changed 

In her complexion ? 

CATHERINE. 

Do not urge me, sir, 

To speak more than I do speak, speaking that 

With pain. 

SIR CONRAD. 

What ! has she turnVl from ivory to — 

CATHERINE. 

Anything you please. 

SIR CONRAD. 

Mahogany ? 

CA'l'HERINE. 

You say it for me, Fm beholden to you ; 

""Tis hard to speak unwelcome things of friends. 

SIR OTTO. 

And hard to hear them too. Sir Rupert. 



SCENK lit.] 


LOVE. 




sin Kl'l-FIIT 


Wl'11. 






SIR OTTO. 


Hear ye? 






bIR UUPEKT 


I do. 





79 



SIR OTTO. 

And what resolve you ? 

SIR RUPERT. 

What 

I did resolve before — to break no lance 
Except for Catherine. Her maiden thoughts — 
Test to the daintiest conceit of love — 
And generous affections, might unveil 
I'hemselves to modesty without its blush, 
Are Catherine's complexion ! {^Betires. 

CATHERINE. 

He is mad ! 

Isn't he, sir ? Have twenty masses said, 
That you preserve your wits ! seeing the thing 
That turn'd his brain for him, you all affect. 
Think you "'twill bring him to his senses, sirs, 
To tell him she hath squandered all her wealth .'' 

SIR OTTO. 

Better she halted in her gait than that ! 

SIR CONRAD. 

Or cast her white skin for an luhiop's ! 
You do not tell us so ? 

CATHF.UlNi:. 

I'll tell it him. 

SIR oiro. 
But is it so ? 



80 LOVE. [act IV. 

She was a prudent girl 
Before she went. 

CA1HER1NE. 

Man, sir, is but a plant. 

Although he holds no rank in botany ; 

And as with change of climate plants will change, 

Thrive more less, or take no root at all, 

So man discovers strange diversity 

Transferred to sun and soil not native to him. 

SIR OTTO. 

But are her riches dwindled ? 

SIR CONRAD. 

Has she shrunk, 

Indeed, from affluence to poverty? 

CATHERINE 

Sirs, you shall judge from one particular. 

From morn till night she is in masquerade. 

You wouldn't know her, though you lookM upon her, 

Walk'd with her, talk'd with her. Can this be done 

At light expense "^ Moreover, sirs, she keeps 

Bad company ; nor that of her own sex ; 

Two arrant knaves especially, that stick 

Like leeches to her, and will ne'er fall off 

Long as she suffers them, while there's a droj) 

To gorge. 

SIR OTTO. 

She is ruin'd utterly. 

SIR CONUAD. 

Undone, 

Beyond redemption. Look, Sir Rupert. 



SIR RUPERT. 



Well .? 



SCENE 111.] LOVE. 81 

SIR CONRAD. 
Catherine ""s for liire ; she must take service ! All 
Her wealth is fjonc. 

SIR RUPERT. 

{Cheerfully) Is gone? 

SIR CONRAD. 

It makes you glad ! 

SIR RUPERT. 

Now could I woo her with the best of ye. 

Her match in fortune, I could praise her now 

Dreading no charge of venal flattery. 

Fair sir, take pity on an honest heart 

And loving one, and as you know the haunt 

'Ihis gentle fawn hath slunk to, tell it me 

That I may straight o'ertake and make her mine. 

SIR OTTO. 

Better you wait to-morrow's tournament. 
As we shall. 

GATHER INK. 

Gentlemen, you do not know 

Your man ! Tell me a linsey-woolsey maid, 

With halting gait and saffron -colour'd skin. 

And not a doit to make a market with them, 

Could for a moment in comparison 

Stand with the Countess ! who could credit it.'' 

The simple truth is this, your friend lacks mettle. 

SIR RUPERT. 

Sir! 

CATHERINE. 

He can bluster, that is evident. 
See what a giant, — he would eat me up 
If he could : but think you, sirs, I heed his club? 
Give me a straw, I'll face him. You mistake 

o 



82 LOVE. [act IV. 

Your friend ! his frame 's robust enough, but, 'faith, 
His spirit is a lean one. 

SIR RUPERT. 

'Sdeath, sir ! 

CATHERINE. 

Ho! 

If you have sworn men into agues, sir, 

Don't try your skill on me. My parrot swears 

As well as you, and just as much I heed him. 

SIR RUPERT {draioing). 
It passeth all endurance —pshaw, a stripling ! 

CATHERINE. 

A stripling, sir, to make an oak afeard. 

SIR RUPERT {again drawing^ 
Indeed ! 

CATHERINE. 

As I do live his sword is out ! 

But he's a spaniel, as I'll prove to you. 

Who thinks he bites by showing you his teeth. 

Here's for you, sir — [draxcs) — but hold, what day is this? 

SIR CONRAD. 

Friday. 

CATHERINE. 

I never fight on Fridays, sirs. 

My killing days are all the rest of the week. 

E'en Sundays not excepted. Sirs, your friend 

Is a coward. [Coollg puts up her sword. 

SIR RUPERT. 

Furies ! 

CATHERINE. 

Fiends and all sorts of imps ! 

Swearing won't save you, sir. I'll prove my words. 

I dare you, at the tournament to-morrow, 



SCENE IV.] LOVE. 83 

To break a lance with nie. Observe vou, sirs, 
He shakes from head to foot at tlie tIioiio;ht of it, 
Though now he ])nss it off with swa^jgerings. 
He dares as soon confront stout Charlemagne, 
Were he olive, as me. I'll wager you 
My sword to your dagger, he takes flight to-day, 
And waits not for to-morrow. 

SIR RUPERT. 

Will I not ! 

I will hare satisfaction. I accept 

His challenge. I will have satisfaction, sirs. 

CATHERINE. 

You shall, and have it to your heart''s content. 

Take linsey-woolsey with a halt, and the skin 

Of a negro, rather than essay a tilt 

With chance to win a Countess ! I could laujrii 

To scorn the man that would believe him. Oh ! 

He shall have satisfaction. I could beat him 

With a rush in rest. He shall have satisfaction ! 

Sirs, he will cower at very sight of me ; 

Fall on his knees, and beg his of me 

With clasped hands. He shall have satisfaction ! 

[ They go out severally. 



SCENE LAST. 
A Room in the Castle. 



Enter Countess. 

COUNTESS. 

It is confirm''d — the place he holds beside her 
Her every action speaks. Of all her court, 
He is the only one, whose duties to her 

g2 



84 LOVE. [act IV. 

She takes as favours, not as things of course. 

He comes ! Who stops him thus untimely .'' Oh, 

How changed he is ! — The fiery hardihood 

Of the life he hath of late made consort of, 

Hath given another spirit to his eyes. 

His face is cast anew, as circumstance 

Could alter Nature's modelling and work, 

Improving on her mould. Is that the man 

Was once my father"'s serf, and I did scorn ? 

Fell ever at my wayward frown that brow ? 

Or stoop 'd that knee, for me, to kiss the ground ? 

Would they do it now ? Fell ever at my feet 

That form, as prostrate as the hand of death 

Had struck it to the floor ? 'Twould take that hand 

To lay it now there — and a wave of mine 

Had done it once ! If he confesses hold 

Of any other, never shall he learn 

His hold of me ! but, if he strives in love, 

I bless my stars I have the Vantage ground, 

[HuoN enters, and remains standing at a distance^ uitJi 
his er/es on the ground. 

COUNTESS. 

Is Huon here, and does not Huon speak ? [^Pauses. 

Absent so long, no greeting for a friend — {^Pauses. 

A woman, too ! (Pauses) — no salutation kind, 
Prelude of happy news she'd joy to hear, — 
Relation of adventures she would thrill 
To listen to, — exploits she would wonder at 
And the next moment at her wonder blush, 
Knowing whose arm achieved them I 

HUON. 

I am glad 

To find you well. 



kct.NK IV.] LOVE. 85 

COUNTESS. 

"\'ou arc glad to find mc well .'' 
I hope you are ! It were not saying niucli, 
I trust, to say I know you are ! You are glad 
To find me well ! Is that your news for ine 'i 
If 'tis, it is strange news. 

HUON. 

You wish'd to see me, 

And I am here to learn your will. 

COUNTKSS. 

More news ! 

You are a friend worth parting with, you bring 

Such marvels home with you. Sometime methinks 

Since last we met together, and you are glad 

'I'o find me well ; and, as I wished to see you, 

You are here to learn my will ! You were not here 

Had not I sent for you. 

HUON. 

It would have been 
Presumptuous. 



COUNTESS. 



si 



Presumptuous 

HUON. 

Yes, madam, 
In the serf. 

COUNTESS {xcith sudden indignation). 
No, sir, not in the favourite 
Of the Empress! — Huon, this is not the way 
We ought to meet ! It should not be in anger. 
\ ou are come home, and you are welcome home. 
Kc(juires my tongue a backer to get credence ^ 
A\ ell ! there's my hand beside. Do you not take 
My hand ? 



86 LOVE. [act IV. 

HUON. 
You are a noble lady, madam, 
Whose father was my lord, by leave of whom 
I thought and had a will — did what I did — 
Yea, kept the very blood within my veins. 
Behoves it I should take his daughter's hand ? 

COUNTESS. 

You mock me. 

HUON. 

Would I did, and 'twere a dream ! 
But dreams are not repeated day by day, 
And day by day reminds me of a time 
I was your father''s serf. 

COUNTESS. 

No more of this. 

HUON. 

Oh ! would no more ! The wounded body heals, 

The pain is over, all is sound again, 

A scar reminds you of it — nothing more ! 

Not so the heart, you lacerate it once ! 

Habit may dull, pursuit engross — divert — 

But never are you ransomed from the throe. 

Live your meridian out it comes again. 

Fresh as at first, to make you writhe anew. 

COUNTESS. 

We do not meet to talk of grievances, 
Huon. I offer'd you my hand just now. 
Why do you weep? I did not give it you 
To kiss it with your tears ! 

HUON. 

O, 'tis a hand 

Thou hast forbidden mine to meet. 



8CENK IV.) LOVE. 87 

COUNTESS. 

No, Hiion, 

Not as friends! — {rccnverinrj herself) — I'll see liim clearly 
first— [Aside. 

Sit down and let us talk. I have fifty things 
I want to say to you, yet know not which 
To begin with. Huon, do you like the Empress ? 

UUON. 

Like her ! 

COUNTESS. 

Yes; like her, — that's the word I said. 
Perhaps it should be *' love her'' ? 

HUON. 

Love her, madam ! — 

COUNTESS {interrupting him). 
I see you do ! Go on ? What were you going 
To say ? 

HUON. 

O, contrast marvellous ! beyond 
Belief of nature ! 

COUNTESS. 

Ay ! 'twixt her and me ! 

Go on ! The contrast ? Best we understand 

Each other ! Well ? The contrast ? 

HUON. 

'Twere as one 

Should find the sun by following the night ! 

Should plunge into her regions, and for chill, 

And gloom, and sterileness, find light, and warmth, 

And verdure, — such as should belong to day ! 

'Twere as death owned a heart, and life had none 

But with the shows of animation 



88 LOVE. [act IV. 

Did lodge within its breast a core of stone, 

While the still ribs of death had pulse within them ! 

COUNTESS. 

Am I that day, that life, compared to which 
Death, night, are e'en so rich ? Is she thou servest 
That death, that night, preferr'd to life and day ? 

HUON. 

O, I did love thee to oblivion 

Of myself ! What Nature gave me to assert 

The man neglecting, as despised things 

Compared to thee ! That she intended me 

For deeds of nobleness I may confess. 

Seeing that others own I have achieved them. 

Yet I abused her bounties, — and, for what .'' 

Scorns — wrongs — through love of thee preferrM them ! 

And which I bore ; until the cause itself, 

That made me bear them, thou didst make a means 

Of yet unknown oppression. That I bore ! 

But there did patience cease. Yes ! not, until 

Coerced there, where, spared, I were content 

To last the thrall of passion's lethargy. 

Did I rebel ! But when I was struck down 

Prostrate, as, for the sake of flesh and blood. 

Behoves not slaves to lie, — with marvel on't 

I waked to sense of what I ought to be ! 

Of what, against my will, 'twas past the sport 

Of power to change me from ! a man ! — and straight 

A man I started up ! a man, resolved 

To use his attributes as fits a man 

To vindicate the ancient, common birth-right, 

And answer the design of Him that framed him ! 



SCENE iv.J LOVE. 8y 

COUNTESS. 

So ! you have register'd your debts to me, 
No item overlooked thou knowest of. 
A\ hat, now, if 1 could name to thee one debt 
Would blot out all the rest ? — not known to thee, 
A debt thy dreams did never give thee glimjjse of, — 
Thy dreams where thou didst soar, didst cast away 
The clog, last morn put on, and mount as high 
As e'er ambition left at lar<>:e could wintr. 
Daring the eagle to come up to thee ! 

HUON. 

No debt that thou couldst name were jjaiu to me. 

I keep no register of aught between us. 

Or, if I do, I never turn to it. 

Unless enforced, as now. Whate'cr has pass'd, 

Is pass'd, and, profitless to memory. 

Were better be forgotten. 

COUXTESS. 

Ay.' Indeed! 

So easily done ? Well, be it so ! 'Tis past. 

And so should be forgotten. Please you, now 

Turn to the Empress. "^'ou have painted me ; 

Proceed to her. Come, let me see what hand 

You will make of her picture. When I ask\l you now 

If you liked her, you did echo me ! — and then 

I ask'd you if you loved her, and again 

You echo'd me ! I want an answer, not 

An echo. Well, sir ? well .'' 

nuox. 
Madam, I love 
And honour her. {She starts from lur scat ; he rises also.) 



yo LOVE. [act IV. 

COUNTESS. 
Thou art rewarded, pride ! 

Meet'st thy deserts ! Show thy high breeding now ! 
Tread stately ! throw thy spurning glances round ! 
And talk as mighty things as though the earth 
Were made for thee alone ! Where 's thy domain ? 
Gone ! And thy palace, what is it ? a ruin ! 
And what art thou thyself? a beggar now ! 
Huon, you loved me once ! (Bursting into tears.) 

HUON. 

I loved thee once ! 

Oh, tell me, when was it I loved thee not ? 

Was't in my childhood, boyhood, manhood ? Oh ! 

In all of them I loved thee ! And were I now 

To live the span of my first life, twice told. 

And then to wither, thou surviving me, 

And yet I lived in thy sweet memory, 

Then might''st thou say of me, " He loved me once ; 

But that was all his life 1" 

COUNTESS. 

'Twas heart for heart ! 

I loved thee ever ! Yes ! the passion now 

Thrills on the woman's tongue ; the girl's had told thee, 

Had I been bold as fond ; for even then 

I saw thy worth, but did not see thy station, 

Till others, not so well affected towards thee, 

Reveard it to me by their cold regards. 

I could not help my nature. From that time 

Two passions strove in my divided soul 

For mastery — scorn of thy station, love 

For thee — each feeding on the other"'s hate, 

And growing stronger; till I thought their strife 



SCENE IV.] LOVE. 91 

Would shake my frame to disst)lution ! Yes ! 
Oh, Huon ! when my brow sat cloudy oft 
O'er my cold eye, that look'd askant at thee. 
Thou little thought what friend there was within 
\\'ould make that brow clear as a summer sky, 
That eye bright, glowing as a summer's sun, 
To kindle thee — as they, their world, with life, 
And health, and wealth, and gladness '. 

HUON. 

Say'st thou this 

To me .'' or do I dream I hear tiice say it ? 

Or is the past a dream? 1 did not yield 

At thy command, to marry Catherine ? 

Thou didst not see me wed her ? Fancy forged 

The ring I thought I put upon her finger ? 

Thou wast not by at all? From first to last, 

Hadst not a hand in it r or, if thou hadst, 

Why then untimely this unfold to me? 

For I do know thee to be pride of all 

Proud honour's children ! Art thou offspring prime 

Of cruelty as well ? O, Heaven, to think 

She loved me, and could give me to another, 

Nor yet to her alone ! — another ! — 

COUNTESS. 

Ha ! Well ? 

HUON. 

— One who ne'er set eyes on me until 
An outcast, by her deed of hate who loved me ! 
To one, a stranger, saw me seeking fortune, 
And gave the hand to me could lielp me to her ! 
Lavish 'd her favours on me ! — lit me up 



92 LOVE. [act IV. 

With honours, till beside the bright themselves 
I lost no brightness ! 

COUNTESS, 

To the Empress ? 

HUON. 

Yes! 

Thou lovest me ? — O, fate ! There was a time, 
'Twere more than bliss, if more could be, to know it ; 
But now 'tis misery ! 

COUNTESS. 

'Tis misery ! [Countess starts up again, HuoN also rising. 

Art thou in such a strait indeed as that. 

To give my love for thee so harsh a name ? 

What shall I call it then ? Gain me a name 

Will stand for something worse than misery — 

Will paint the case of a high, noble maid, 

Who stoop'd to love a serf; nay, stopp'd not there, 

But told her passion to him — INIisery ! 

HUON. 

I am no more a serf. 

COUNTESS. 

Thou art ennobled ; 

Yet art thou still the same, thou hast won honours ; 
Howards of deeds, in spite of thy base blood 
Achieved by thee ! 

HUON. 

Nay, madam, spare my blood. 
And pardon me, its owner, if I say 
It is not base. 

COUNTESS. 

It is ! what should it be 

But base ? A serf did give it thee, a serf 



SCENE IV.] LOVE. 93 

Gave him his blood ! Trace back the current, sir, 
Far as you can, and you will find it base, 
Nothing but base. 

HUON. 

Madam, men's natures are 

Their blood : thev have no other — hifrh or low. 

If base the current hitherto of mine. 

It ceased with me. Born in thy father's house 

A serf, I left it one, to seek my fortune, 

Make it or mar it, for promotion having 

No other patron than my own right arm, 

And mv own heart and head to guide and nerve it : 

And with their help, I see that house again, 

An independent, self-exalted man. 

While many a son, who left a noble home 

With blood untainted for a thousand years. 

Returns to it no better than he left it. 

Is my bkx)d base .'' 

COUNTESS. 

No, Huon ! mine was base 
To let me call it so. Alas ! alas ! 
And hast no better welcome for my love 
Than that sad word thou spok''st ? 

HLON. 

A\'hat word so fit ? 

What is it to a man condemn 'd to die. 
To tell him of a trea.sure left to him ? 
Shall he be glad and thank his luckv stars. 
Or shall not that, their bounty, aggravate 
The ruin, makes it vain ! 

COUNTES.S. 

Condemn 'd to die ? 

Resemblest thou a man condemn'd to die ? 



94 LOVE. [act IV. 

HUON. 

Why didst thou drive me from thee by that act ? 

COUNTESS. 

That act was nothing ; "'twas thy flight, 

And that which foUow'd it. Thou art entangled — 

And thank thy flight. Oh ! Huon, were thy love 

In daring enterprise the tithe of mine, 

""Twould attempt something to enlarge thee from 

The cause thou art prisoner to ! 

HUON. 

It cannot cease, 
Except with life. 

COUNTESS. 

The Empress loves thee, Huon ! 

HUON, 

No. 

COUNTESS. 

But she does. 

Thou art her favourite. She 

Hath chained thee to her throne. 

HUON. 

No. 

COUNTESS. 

But she has ! 

Thou hast made merchandise. 

Most shameful, merchandise, of thy allegiance ! 

Broken oaths as tiny shells which at a touch 

Do fall to powder ! 



HUON. 



Broken oaths ! 



SCENE IV. ] 



LOVE. 



COUNTESS. 

Yes, oatlis ! 

Thy life was all one oath of love to me ! 

Swoni to me daily, hourly, by thine eyes. 

Which, when they saw me, lightcn'd up as though 

An angel's presence did enhance their sense, 

That I have seen their very colour change, 

Subliming into lines past earthliness. 

Talk of the adjuration of the tongue — 

Compare love's name, a sound which any life 

May pipe ! a breath I with holy love itself ! 

ThouVt not forsworn, because thou took'st no oath? 

What were thy accents then ? thy accents, Huon ? 

O ! they did turn thy lightest words to oaths, 

Vouching the burden of a love-fraught soul ! 

Telling a tale which my young nature caught 

With interest so deep, was conn'd by heart 

Before I knew the fatal argument ! 

Huon, I charge thee quit the service of the Empress ! 

HUON. 



'Twere ajjainst all honour. 



No! 

Give up her service ! 

'Twere inorratitudc. 

Ingratitude, for what ! 

She has advanced me 
Past mv deserts. 

No, I deny it ! No ! 



COUNTESS. 



HUON. 



COUNTESS. 



HUON. 



COUNTESS. 



9g LOVE. [ACT i^'- 

Not equal to them ! No ! Thy golden deeds 
She has repaid with tinsel ! 

ULRiCK {entering). 

Please you, sir, 

The Empress summons you. 

COUNTESS. 

You are not going ? 

HUON. 

My presence is commanded. 

COUNTESS. 

Are you going ? 

ULRICK. 

My lord ! 

HUON. 

I come, 

COUNTESS. 

You are going, then ? 

HUON. 

I must go. 

COUNTESS. 

You must .? Then go ? Go, and farewell for ever ! 

[ They go out. 



CENE 1.] LOVE. 97 



ACT V. 

SCENE I. 
Tlie Hall of the Castle. 



The Empress, Courtiers, Knii/hts, HerakU^ S^x. jyrcpareo 
to proceed to the Toiimamcjit. 

Enter Ulrick. 
EMPRESS {to Ulrick). 
Why wait we for the Countess? What delays her? 
Tliis day is dedicate to her ; for her 
We are convened ; and comes she last of all 

ULRICK. 

Madam, she craves your favour for this pause. 
Believe 'tis not remissness, but mischance, 
Retards her. Doubtless, she will come, anon. 

EMPRESS. 

Anon, my lord ! Anon is not our time 

For friends to greet us, when they summon us. 

Enter three Attendants, the first hearing a coronet 
on a cushion, the second a pile of parchments, 
the third folloxced hy Vassals, carrying money - 
coffers ; last of all, the Countess, plainly 
attired, followed hy her Women, in costly dresses. 
She stops before the Empress. 

EMPRESS. 

^Vhy, lady ! what is this ? 

COUNTESS. 

My liege, receive 

This emblem of that pomp which I resign, 

H 



98 LOVE. [act v. 

Because 'tis adjunct to conditions, such 
As render it a burden to me, past 
The faculty of sufferance to bear. 

EMPRESS. 

Lady ! 

COUNTESS. 

So please you, madam, give me leave. 
As joint executor with this worthy lord, 
Into your hands I also yield all right 
And title to this fair chateau, besides 
The lands and forests, its appendages, 
As well as vassals, natives of the soil. 

EMPRESS. 

But, lady— 

COUNTESS 

Madam, suffer me conclude. 
These are the coffers which my father left, 
And as he left them rendered to your highness ; 
And with them all resign'd, save such endowment 
As shall entitle me to that retreat 
Holy and calm, wlierein I mean to pass, 
I'll say, the remnant of my days, i' th' hope, 
Though few are past, still fewer are to come. 
Which option, as you know, my father's will 
Has left to me. 

EMPRESS. 

Then will you not abide 

The cast of fate in the tournament? nor take 

The husband she may send — nor yet select 

Yourself? 

COUNTESS. 

I cannot, madam. 



scENK i-l l.OVE. 99 

EMPRESS. 



COUNTESS. 



EMPRESS. 



COUNTESS. 



How? 

I am 
Forestaird. ' 

J^y whom ? 

By you ! 

EMPRESS. 

Let every one 

Repair to the tournament. Let it proceed, 

As we ourself were there. And you, my lord, 

[ To Uluick. 
Preside for us. It is our will the lists 
Be open'd straight. The Countess stays with me. 

[^All go out, except the Empress and Countess. 
AVc are alone ! Now, how am I a let 
To such espousals as your choice would make? 

countess. 
Do you not know ? 

empress. 
Clirl, be direct with me, 
Nor in the headlong passion of your soul, 
That seems to joy in strife and wrack, forget 
'Tis your liege lady that vouchsafes you audience. 

COUNTESS. 

That I forget, and everything beside, 
Except one thing, in still revolving which 
The earth hath shrunk in estimation 
Into a grain — the sun into a spark ! 
Nought hath kept substance but my desolation, 

n2 



100 LOVE. [act v. 

Which seems to me to fill up space itself 
Till nothing else hath room. 

EMPRESS. 

Thy desolation ? 
Who made it for thee ? 

COUNTESS. 

Thou ! 

EMPRESS. 

In what regard ? 

COUNTESS. 

In thy attractive favour shown to Huon ! 

EMPRESS. 

I made thy desolation ? Thou thyself 
Didst make it with thy pride, the greater, but 
Worse portion of thee ! 

COUNTESS. 

By my pride ? 

EMPRESS. 

Thy pride, 

Which, evil counsellor to thy love, advised it 

To blush with shame at homage from the which 

It could not yet refrain, because 'twas due — 

Tribute to such desert, as far behind 

Left all desert beside, and might have worn 

The subject's heart — whose mistress's it won ! — 

Thy story— everything are known to me. 

COUNTESS. 

Then thou confessest it ! 

EMPRESS. 

What? 

COUNTESS. 

What ? 



8CKNK I.] LOVE. 101 

EMPRESS. 

Beware ! 

I brook not such a tone from thee. 

COUNTESS. 

The heart 

Will s})eak, despite the checks of shows and forms, 

Shadows compared to its realities ! 

Is it not so with thee ? — e'er hast thou felt 

A pang ? — and if thou hast, whose, then, thy palace ? 

Thy retinue ? — thy guards ? — thy empire ? — Gone 

\Vith all their proud appurtenances, and 

No habitation left thee, but thy breast, 

The only house of happiness or woe ! 

How shall it be with me, then, with a heart 

INIadden'd with torture ? Shall I cast about 

To furnish looks, and words, and tones for things, 

I have no interest in, and thou, that hast. 

In equal case wouldst give to disregard i 

EMPUESS. 

Remember thou 'rt a subject ! 

COUNTESS, 

So I will 

While thou 'rt the empress ; but when thou becomest 

A woman — a mere woman like myself — 

Stepp'st from the eminence that lifts thee 'bove me — 

Level'st thee to me in one common nature — 

I deal with thee as woman deals with woman I 

I own thy power ! I must, and do ! Thy breath 

Can doom me exile, bondage, what it will ! 

There I submit ! Thou art the empress there. 

But when thou thwart'st me in the interests 

^^ Inch arc the rigiit not more of one than all — 



102 LOVE. [act v.. 

Trenchest upon my private peace — my love — 
Thou dost me wrong, for which I challenge thee 
As equal may an equal. 

EMPRESS. 

Come ! Thy challenge ? 
What dost allege against me ? 

COUNTESS. 

Thou dost love him ! 

EMPRESS. 

Ay, by my troth, as much as thou didst scorn him ! 

COUNTESS. 

He did accuse me to thee ? 

EMPRESS. 

Wayward woman, 

He never spoke of thee, except with love. 

COUNTESS. 

How couldst thou love him then ? How could thy great- 
ness 
Forget itself to try and steal a heart, 
Thou knew"'st to be another's ? 

EMPRESS. 

Steal ! 

COUNTESS. 

Ay, steal ! 

Must we coin terms for those that are above us, 

To make offences gracious to their ears, 

AVhen they commit them — which, by us enacted. 

Would blast with damning names ! 

EMPRESS. 

Thou hast a spirit ! 

COUNTESS. 

Thou kncw'st he loved me, and didst covet him ! 



<CENE 1.] LOVE. 103 

Covet a licart at second-hand — an Empress ! 

Hear me that am a subject, and thy subject — 

His heart was mine, till thou didst rob me of it; 

Not of it all, but of a part— though if 

A part be gone, go all ! Well, as I said, 

His heart was mine at first. 'Tis gone — my peace, 

Hopes, everything, along with it ! Wiiat then ? 

Would I have it back ? — No ! — 1 would sooner die ! 

Its worth was its fidelity — that lost. 

All 's lost. Thou covetedst a faithless heart ! 

EMPRESS. 

Didst thou deserve that heart ? 

COUNTESS {loeepincf) . 
I did ! — I loved him 
Better than thou couldst do ! 

EMPRESS. 

I'faith, thou 'rt brave ! 

Thy love of him was persecution. 

COUNTESS {toeejnmj). 
Yet 
I loved him ! 

EMPRESS. 

Loved him ! It was tyranny, 
Enforced without the mercy of a pause. 

COUNTESS {weeping still, and more bitterhj). 
The more I loved him ! 

EMPRESS. 

Loved him ! — and constrainVl him 
To nuptials he abhorr'd. 

COUNTESS. 

I did — and then [/« an agony of tears. 

I loved him most ! 



104 LOVE. [act v. 

EMPRESS. 
How had it fared with him, 
Hadst thou been I ? 

COUNTESS. 

Far differently. 

EMPRESS. 

How ? 

COUNTESS. 

I then had been above rebuke or blame ! 

I would have given his merits their fair field. 

Encouraged them to challenge their deserts, 

Rewarded them till they had lifted him 

So near equality to me, the seat 

I fiird, he might have shared along with me. 

EMPRESS. 

That field he found himself, without my aid. 
I saw him there, and challenged simple greatness. 
In spite of its disguise ; desired it doif 
Its lowly suit, and show the thing it vt^as ; 
Nor stopp'd till, step by step, I saw it climb 
To where it stands ; nor mean I to stop there. 

COUNTESS. 

How.? 

EMPRESS. 

I design for him the highest grace 
I can bestow. 

COUNTESS. 

The highest ! 

EMPRESS. 

Yes, beyond 

His hopes, until to-day — until to-day. 

Never divulged to him. 



SCENE 1.] LOVE. lOo 

COUNTESS. 

He knows it, then ? 

EMPRESS. 

He docs; and, till my promise is fulfill'd, 
With fears that shake him spite of certainty 
Of his immeasurable happiness — 
For such he thinks it — wears a doubtful life. 

COUNTESS. 

Thy hand ! 

EMPRESS. 

The hand of her, more proud to be 

The empress of his heart than of my realm. 

COUNTESS. 

He shall not take it ! 

EMPUESS. 

Not ? 

COUNTESS. 

Thy power is huge, 

But there are bounds to it ! 

EMPRESS. 

What bounds .'* 

COUNTESS. 

Right !— Law !— 

Imperial foot stops there. It dares not cross, 

And if it dares, it shall not. 

EMPRESS. 

Faith, thou'rt brave ! 

COUNTESS. 

He shall not marry ! 

EMPRESS. 

No? 

COUNTESS. 

No! 



lOG LOVE. [act v. 

EMPRESS. 
Gods, a rock ! 
She echoes me! 



He shall not marry ! 



COUNTESS. 



EMPRESS. 



What ! 
Again ? 

COUNTESS. 

Wast thou the empress of the world, 

I 'd say to thee again — he shall not marry ! 

EMPRESS. 

Thou know'st a let ? 

COUNTESS. 

I do! 

EMPRESS. 

The troth he pledged 

To Catherine — you see I am advised 

Of all ! The marriage is annull'd. 

COUNTESS. 

It is? 

It is ! 

How l 

By the church ! 

COUNTESS. 

The church ? And yet 
He shall not marry ! 

EMPRESS. 

What ! Not marry thee? 



EMPRESS. 



COUNTESS. 



EMPRESS. 



SCENE I.] LOVE. lU/- 

COUNTESS {cha))f/in(/, and falUuff on her hnecs). 
Madam ! 

EMPRESS. 

The hand that I design for him — 
Crown of my favour, his deserts — is thine, 
Not mine, my girl — the guerdon fair for which 
He would not take my empire in exchange — 
Ay, with my hand, to boot ! 

COUNTESS. 

My liege, my empress! 

EMPRESS. 

My fiery queen, and have I tamed you now? 

Tamed you so soon ? I half repent me on't. 

Mine's the true spirit namesake ! It admires 

To see itself in others. Taith, ray glass 

Never reflected me more honestly 

Than thou didst even now. Listen to me. 

I am thy Huon's friend and nothing more. 

Rise. Now we'll talk as sister does with sister. 

Hither thy Huon bears me company — 

Unwarn'd to what intent until to-day ; 

Until to-day, in darkness that the bar 

The church, with thy fair aid, 'twixt him and thee 

Did set— the church, at my persisting suit, 

Hath quite annuU'd ; and now he's in the lists 

Striving to win thee ! He that never yet, 

In strait of life or death, much less a tilt, 

SufTer'd defeat. (Trumpets) — That flourish is the close. 

Smile at it, girl ! It makes thee Huon's wife! 

Huon — no more the serf — but nobleman — 

Nor nobleman alone ! This hour a prince. 

For thv fair sake! 



108 LOVE. [act v. 

COUNTESS {dejectedly to herself). 
Would he were still the serf. 

EMPRESS. 

Dejected girl ! 

COUNTESS. 

Madam. 

EMPRESS. 

They come ! come hither ! 

Here take thy seat in the centre. Here thou art chief. 

We are but second ! Smile — thy Huon comes ! 

[^IMusic. Ulrick and the rest re-enter from the 
Tournament. The Empress anxiously surveys 
them. The Countess absent and dejected. 
Where is he ? 

countess. 
Madam ? 

EMPRESS. 

Which is Huon ? \_Aside to Countess. 

COUNTESS. 

Which ? 

EMPRESS {aside to Countess). 
Methinks he is not here can make him out. 
Girl, tell me is thy lover here or not ? 
He seems not here, and yet he must be here. 

herald. 
Madam, the lists are closed. The victor waits 
The prize which he has won. Shall he receive it ? 

empress {aside to Codntess). 
Shall I say yes ? 1 must say yes. Thou smilest. 
I will say yes ! — He shall receive the prize. {Aloud. 

Who is that that bows ? 



SCENE I.] LOVE. lO'.i 

HERALD. 

The victor, madam. 

EMPRESS (to Countess). 
Ha ! Do you know him ? 

COUNTESS. 

Not in his armour ; yet 

Methinks 1 oufrlit to know him were it he. 

EMPRESS. 

Sir Knight, so please you, raise your visor. 'Tis 
The prince of Milan ! Girl — what means thine eye 
To blaze with joy ? It looks on thy despair ! 
The prince of ]\Iilan 'tis has won the day. 
Hear'st thou me ? Know'st thou what I say ? 

COUNTESS. 

I do ! 

Both hear and comprehend thee. 

EMPRESS. 

Ay, and smile. 

COUNTESS, 

And smile. 

EMPRESS. 

Art thou thyself ? Am I myself? 

I thiuk myself the same ! \\'here is Iluon ? 

ULRICK. 

Gone 

To take his armour off. 

EMPRESS. 

How fared it with him ? 

ULRICK. 

He entered first the lists, and one by one 
Overthrew all comers, till the prince of Milan 
Unhorsed him. 



110 LOVE. [act v. 

COUNTESS. 

Is he hurt ? 

ULRICK. 

No, madam. 

COUNTESS (jstarting up). 

Thanks ! 

My Lord, bring Huon hither I Hither ! Hie ! 

Now all is as it should be. 

EMPRESS. 

Should bo, girl ? 

Say rather should not be. Thy lover's foil'd. 

Where is the ashy cheek that meets disaster, 

The brow that's like the wrack ? the gCisty breath ? 

The quivering bloodless lip and quaking frame ? 

These should be and they are not ! Where are they ? 

Or rather wherefore see I in their stead 

Things "'twould become to wait on holidays 

Rather than days of penance ? Look not thus. 

Else thou wilt make me hate thee ! 

COUNTESS. 

Madam, madam, 

I tell thee, and believe me, all is well. 

EMPRESS (indignantly). 
Then let the prince of Milan take his prize. 

FREDERICK. 

I claim it on my knee ! 

(^At the moment the Prince kneels, HuoN led by Ulrick enters, 
and the Countess rushes toirards liim.) 

COUNTESS. 

How is it, Huon ? 
Thou look ""st as hurt. 



SCENE I.] LOVE. Ill 

TllTON. 

Sped in the spirit, ladv. 

Forgetful of my charger, all unniinclfiil 

He laek'd my argument to hearten him, 

Bent on the most surj)assing prize alone, 

1 did not think to change him and he failM me. 

COUNTESS. 

Fortune, farewell ! and pride go with thee ! Go ! 
Welcome adversity ! Shake hands with me 
Thou tester of true hearts ! whose homely fare 
No flatterer sits down to — hollow friend, 
Foe, masking thoughts of scorn with smiling face — 
But truth and honesty ! affection staunch! 
That grasps the hand before it scans the sleeve, 
And greets the lowly portal with a grace 
More winning far than his, who thanks the gate 
That spreads with ])ride, to let a monarch in. 

EMPRESS. 

Girl, I am loth to speak in terms of hlame, 
But thou hast much offended courtesy : 
Not only slighting me, thy sov"' reign lady. 
But him to whom thy fate awards thee bride ! 

COUNTESS. 

A wife must be a widow ere a bride. 

EMPRESS. 

A wife ? no wife art thou ! 

COUNTESS. 

I am a wife! 

Before this goodly presence I proclaim it. 
A wife by stealth, but still a wedded wife ! 
Weilded for love, as fervent, durable, 
As ever led a woman to the altar ! 



112 LOVE. [act v. 

EMPRESS. 
Where is thy husband ? where is thy husband ? 

COUNTESS. 

Where my remorse, contrition, deprecation, 

Homage, and love, now throw me ! I am kneeling 

At his feet ! \iKneeIs to Huon 

HUON. 

Thy husband, I ? 

COUNTESS. 

My husband, thou ! 

HUON. 

Was I not wed to Catherine? 

COUNTESS. 

My name is Catherine, as thou shouldst know. 
But, as thou knewest not, till now ; the lips 
Pronounced that name in wedding thee — the hand 
Then given to thee — the troth then plighted thee — 
Were mine as truly as the breath that now 
Avows I am thy wife ! — in debt to fate 
For baffling thee, for now she owns thee lord 
In thy adversity ! 

HUON. 

Thou kneel'st to me ! 

I marvel of thy words ! — I overlook'd thee, 

Madam ! — My wife, rise ! — pray you, rise ! — my own, 

My dear liege lady ever ! I am feeble 

In words ; but, oh ! the strife is strong within, 

Of wonder, gratitude, humility, 

Pride, honour, love, outdoing one another ! 

Ente?' Catherine, disguised. 

CATHERINE. 

Fair Empress, justice ! 



,CKSB I ] LOVE. ii;{ 

EMPHKSS. 
Who asks for justice .•' 

CATHERINE. 

One that is most wronjj'd 

In his honour; cheated by a craven kniojht, 

\\ ho promised him to gi\e him meetin<; here ; 

Hut hath broken liis word — no doubt, througii cowardice. 

EMPRESS. 

\\ hat is his name ? 

CATHERINE. 

sir Rupert. 

SIR RUPERT {stepping furicard). 
He i^peaks false ! 
I am here to my appointment. 

CATHERINE. 

Arc you so? 

.\re you not maim'd in the arm ? 

.SIR RUPERT. 

\o! 

CATHERINE. 

Nor in the leg, that you can't sit your horse .-■ 

SIR RUPERT. 

No ! 

CATHERINE. 

That is still more wonderful ! Nor yet 
in your spirit ? 

SIR RUPERT. 

\o ! 

CATHERINE. 

^lost wonderful of all I 

You do not mean to .say you have the heart 

To fight with me.'' 



^''- . LOVE. ^,,^,. 

SIR RUPERT. 

That you shall see anon. 

CATHERINE, 

Anon, sir.^ now ! but where are your good friends? 

SIR RUPERT. 

Here ! [Sir Otto and Sir Conuad come foncard. 

CATHERINE. 

Gentlemen, I am sorry for the fall - 
You got in tilting for the Countess ; but 
'Tis nothing to the one which he shall rue. 
As you shall see. Down on your knees and beg 
Your life. 

SIR RUPERT. 

And beg my life ! 

CATHERINE. 

Now what 's the use 

Of pondering, on that which must be done. 

Do not you know, sir,— have you borne cuffs 

A thousand times, as well I know you have. 

And know you not a bold f^ice never yet 

Made a bold heart ? Down on your knees at once ! 

Valour won't come for stamping, sir \ entreat 

Your friends to hold you, that's a better way 

To pass for a brave man. 

SIR RUPERT. 

I'll smite thee. 

CATHERINE. 

Do! 

If you dare! r'r/.. • jt i i 

■^ li nrowing off cloak. 

Ha ! Have I brought thee to thy knee at last, sir ? 



""•^^-^E I.] LOVE. 

Said I not I would briiicr tlitv to thy kiieis ? 
Bt'warc I say not I will keep you there. 

SIR RUPEKT. 

\\'hat ! Catherine .- 

COUN'TESS. 

\es, Catherine, Sir Rupert. 

SIR RUPERT. 

^> liaj)piness ! 

COINTESS. 

^^ i)ieli thou hast well deserved. 

sill RUPERT. 

i'hou still wast gracious to nie. 

COUNTESS. 

For thy truth, 

Attested by thy jealous poverty. 

1 saw thy honest love for Catherine, 

In secret cherished, as thou thought'st— as one 

I'onceals a costly treasure he has found, 

And rightfully may keep, but being poor, 

Doth fear to own, through the world^s charity. 

Thy Catherine, before thou fear'dst to claim, 

is render'd back to thee, confes.s'd thine own'. 

And with her, tender'd thanks, for sacrifice 

In self-denying love and trust to me. 



II.-. 



CAIHEIUNE. 

I O more than paid in proh'ting her friend 



COUNTESS. 

^ ft to be paid ! Iluon, canst thou forgivi 



IH; love. [act v. 

The scornful maid, for the devoted wife 

Had cleaved to thee, though ne'er she own'd thee lord ? 

HUON. 

1 nothing see, except thy wondrous love. 

COUNTESS. 

Madam, our happiness doth lift to thee 
Its eyes in penitence and gratitude ! 
Thou, chief in station, first to give desert 
Despite its lowliness, its lofty due ! 
O, thou hast taught a lesson to all greatness 
Whether of rank or wealth, that 'tis the roof 
Stately and broad was never meant to house 
Equality alone — whose porch is ne'er 
So proud, as when it welcomes in desert, 
That comes in its own fair simplicity. 



THE END. 



LONDON : 

BRADBLIRT AND KVANS, PRINTERS, 

nillTEFRIARS. 



MARY S T IT A R T : 



3ln ibtstonral tTriigfUn, 



NOW PERFORMING 



AT THE TUEATRE ROYAL DRURY LANE. 



BY J'AMES HAYNES, 

ArrnoR of " conscience," " durazzo," &c. 



LONDON: 
JAMES RIDGWAY, 169, PICCADILLY. 

MDCCCXL. 



LONDON: 
PRINTED BY T. BRETTELL, RUPERT STREET, HAYMARKET. 



TO 



W. C. MAC READY, Es«. 



My dear Sir, 

It is not in the formal spirit of a dedicator, 
but with the heart-felt gratitude of a deeply-obliged 
friend, that I beg of you to accept the dedication 
of this Tragedy. It owes you every thing — its 
j)roduction on the stiige — its adaptation to the stiige 
— its preparation — its success. The main elements 
of that success were, the solicitude w ith which you 
^vatched its progress, and the pow er with w hich you 
grasped the character of Rutliven, seized on all 
the points, whether prominent or latent, and drove 
them tlnough the public heart by the energy of your 
performance. But, perhaps, this is a topic, which, 
instead of dilating upon myself, I ought to leave to 
that fame which cannot be charc^ed with datterv. 
Tor all your kindness — for all your exertion — for 
tlie position, such as it is, in which I now stand 
amonsr the Dramatists of the dav, and which I 
could not have reached without your assistance, 
accept this humble, but sincere, tribute of gratitude 
from 

Your obliged, and devoted Friend, 

JAMES HAYNES. 

MORLAXD'S HoTKL, OlAN STREET, SoUU. 

FchrHnri/ 1, \n\0. 



1 



ADVEUTISEMENT 



When I first turned my attention to the subject of llizzio's 
death, as the ground work of a Tragedy, I was chiefly 
attracted bv the fierce grandeur of Ruthven's character. 
It appeared to me, that the picture, Avliich historians liad 
drawn of that remarkable personage, was well calculated for 
]K)etical, and even for dramatic effect. Accordingly, I 
embarked my humble ])owers, with more ardour than con- 
sideration, in the attempt to construct a Play out of the 
existing materials, little thinking, at the time, what difficulties 
my imagination had concealed from my judgment. It was 
not, until I had jirocceded t(K) far to retract, (for no man 
likes to throw away his labour,) that I discovered how much 
the scantiness of the materials, the nature of the subject, 
and even the tone of the characters, were calculated to 
obstruct my design. Rutuvkn was t<K) siivagc, and II1//10 
UM» despicabk', to Ik' faithfully represented on the stage ; and 



6 ADVERTISEMENT. 

Mary's attachment to her favourite could not be rendered 
jiromincnt, without the greatest danger, nor evaded, without 
suppressing the only circumstance, that could palliate, or 
indeed account for the sanguinary act. I do not presume 
to say, that I have surmovmted these difficulties, — that I have 
produced scenes which, without countenancing the imputation 
of actual guilt, are still sufficiently marked by indiscretion, to 
soften the otherwise unmitigated horror of the catastrophe : 
but it was my intention to have done so ; and I have stated 
the disadvantages peculiar to the subject itself, as an apology 
for those defects with which the Drama may be otherwise 
fairly chargeable. 

To the Ladies anc Gentlemen, whose talents in the per- 
formance of the different characters have contributed so much 
to the success of " Mary Stuart " on the stage, and to 
every one concerned in its preparation, I beg to offer my most 
cordial thanks for their zealous and able assistance. 



DirV.MATiS PKRSON.^-:. 



r. &c. I 



HENRY STUART, EARL OF DARNLE\ 

(titular King of Scotland) . 

JAMES. EARL OF MORTON. . 

LORD LINDSAY 

MAITLAND OF LETHINGTON, 
GEORGE DOUGLAS, .... 

CHALMERS, 

THE EARL OF RUTHVEN, 

DAVID RIZZIO, 

EARL OF BOTHWELL, 
EARL OF HUNTLEY, 



^TR NICHOLAS THROGMORTON (Ambassador from 
England) ........ 



Mr. Phelps. 



SIR JAMES MELVILLE, .... 
GARCIA, 

.MARY STUART (Queen of Scotland) 

THE COUNTESS OF ARGYLE, 

LADY CATHERINE (Daughter of Lord Ruthven) 

CELINE, 

MARGUERITE, \ the Queen. 



(Foreign Ladies in attendance on 



•: on\ 



. .Mr. 


G. Bknxett 


. Mr. 


Wai.dron. 


.Mr. 


11. .M.insTON 


. Mr. 


Howe. 


. Mr. 


King. 


. Mr. 


Macre.^dy. 


. Mr. 


Elton. 


. .Mr. 


Yarnold, 


. Mr. 


Heath. 


'} Mr. 


J. W. Ray. 


Mr. 


J. Lee. 


. Mr. 


Roberts. 


Mrs. 


Warner. 


Mrs. 


W. West. 


Miss E. Montague. 


Mi.s.< 


Cooper. 


.Miss 


I'ettifer. 



Suitors. Attendants, &c. 



iVfARY STUART. 



ACT I. 

8 C E X K I. 

.4 Court Yard before Mokton's House. 

Ento' MonTos,/olloice<l In/ Lindsay. 

MORTOX. 

80 ! Maitland not yet come ? no letter ! no 
Dispatch ! not even a message ! 

LixnsAV. 
None, iny Lord, 
Hut what I've told yon. 

MORTON. 

That was nothing ! nothin" ! 

i'^orgivc mc, Lindsay ; bnt my mind 's so harass'd 

I cannot speak in measured courtesy : 

To think that he should loiter at a time 

Like this, when 8cotland's fate is in the balance ! 

Nay, let mc hear again what 'twas ho said, 

If he said on^ht. 

LINDSAY. 

The words would signify 
That pressing business called him for awhile 
Another way ; l)ut I should scarce have time 
To tell you so, when he 'd be here himself — 
-Vnd look ! — 

n 



10 MARY STUART. [act i. 

Enter Maitland. 

MORTON. 

'Tis he ! Well, Maitland ! what success ? 
What tidings from the West ? 

MAITLAND. 

Throughout the track 

I 've measured in my journey, discontent 

Was every where — the storm-cloud fills the sky : — 

From every pulpit loud anathemas 

Are thundered at the Queen : — her enmity 

To the true worship shakes the crown upon 

Her head : nor is her love of foreigners 

Forgotten, nor her deadly hatred of 

The banished Lords : in short, some dire explosion 

Is ripening fast ; we must direct it, or 

Be swept away by 'i. 

MORTON. 

Well ; and what have you 
Done for our cause ? 

MAITLAND. 

AVhat every honest man 

Would wish to sec were done. I urged the People 

To send in strong petitions for the pardon 

Of Murray. 

MORTON. 

That was well : 'tis the sole hope 
Of Scotland now. ] lis pardon and return 
Would still controiil the headlong course of ruin 
The Queen seems bent on. Did they promise you ? 

MAITLAND. 

All — to a man : there 's noble stuff amongst 'em. 
Defore yon sim shall dive into the West 
I '11 have some score of grave remonstrances 



SCENE i] .MAKY STUAKT. 11 

To back our eft'orts for his quick recall. 

lint how have matters j)rospere(.l in my abseuco 

With you at home ? 

MORTON. 

E'en as you left 'cm — badly. 

The King is still estranged from us ; the (,Juecu 

As much as ever in the hands of liizzio. 

French counsels are the fashion, and we hear 

Nothing of England but abuse. The Pope, 

In sjiitc of all John Knox's rhetoric, 

Buikls up liis Church anew, and sees it prosper, 

While nmrmurs, half suppressed, tell of the ire 

That 's bursting for an outbreak. 

MAITLAND. 

Tlicu, the more 

Our need of Murray's presence : let us strive 
For its accomplishment : his influence, 
-\s brother to the Queen, combining with 
His other qualities, gives him great power. 

LINDSAY. 

Look, my good Lord, 

A scion of your noble house approaches. 

MORTON. 

An offshoot from the stem. Younjj Gcorjje was born 
(Jf some fair sinner to a Douglas, who 
Besought and won us to acknowledge him. 
But here he is. Well, George ! 

Enter George IJougla.s. 

DOUGLAS. 

Not well, my Lord, 

If I may judge. 11a ! noble Maitland, welcome 

To Edinburgh once more. 



12 MARY STUART. [act i. 

MAITLAND. 

Thanks, gallant friend. 

But how is this ? you spoke complainingly 

As you came in — I know you 're not a croaker : 

What is the latest news ? 

DOUGLAS. 

A pageant, Sir : — 

I stopped upon the way to see it move ; 
And who, d'ye think, led on the bright array, 
Shining like stars before it ? 

MAITLAND. 

Why, the King 

And Q,ueen, of course. 

DOUGLAS. 

There was another still : — 
Guess who that other was. 

MAITLAND. 

Not Bothwell ? 

No. 

Nor Lenox ? 

Nor yet Lenox. 

MAITLAND. 

Was it Sir James ? 

I mean the Queen's adviser, prudent Melville ? 

DOUGLAS. 

You cannot, or you will not, look so low 

As truth must drag you. What would'st say if Rizzio 

]Madc up the third ? — King, Queen, and David Rizzio ! ! 

MAITLAND. 

Impossible ! 



DOUGLAS, 



MORTON. 



DOUGLAS. 



SCEXK I.] MAKV STIAKT. 13 

DOUGLAS. 

Not to those eyes that saw him. 

MORTON. 

And how did Kizzio si-em to bear liis state ? 

DOUGLAS. 

Like one who had a ponderous weight to carry — 
His own importance : and i' faith he carried it 
With a liigh head. The King spoke little to him, 
But the (^ueen smiled, and that was all he cared for. 

MORTON. 

ris through his artifice that Rome prevails — 
Through kim that bigot's plot, the Bayonne league, 
Which binds 'em to extirpate Protestants, 
Finds favour wntU the Queen ! — all his contrivance. 

JIAITLAND. 

Well, let 's succeed in brinffiufj Murray back. 

DOUGLAS. 

Would we could put your project to the proof ! 
But that 's impossible : — the only man 
Whose boldness might accomplish such an end 
Is dying. 

MORTON. 

lla ! you speak of liuthven ? — What ! 
Is he 

DOUGLAS. 

'riierc 's not an hour of breath in his lungs. 

MORTON. 

Your evidence ? What is your evidence ^ 
He 's of the Titan breed, in mind and body : 
A mountain of tlu- North. 



14 MARY STUART. [act i. 

DOUGLAS. 

Mountains have fallen ; 

And rocks have sunk ; and Ruthven's race is run- — 

I left his chamber but an hour ago ; — 

He looked a corpse. 

MORTON, 

How could you waste the time 

In talking of a foolish pageant, when 

You had a fact like this to tell ? 

DOUGLAS. 

Because 

My hate of Rizzio, and my scorn of folly, 

Were greater than my fear. 

MORTON. 

You think too much 

Of your own wrongs ; — all 's lost, if Ruthven 's lost. 

DOUGLAS. 

Well, here comes Chalmers ; he was with liim too ; 
Consult his judgment, as you question mine. 

Enter Chalmers. 

MORTON. 

You come from Ruthven, Chalmers ; is it life, 
Or death, with him ? 

CHALMERS. 

While there 's a spark of life, 

I 'II not despair ; — besides, he mends. 

MORTON. 

Hear that 

From an old soldier : One who has seen death 

Do many a hard day's work ! 



<rr.yr. it.] .MAK'Y STT Airr. 

DOUGLAS, 

And so have I 

Seen death, without the sexton at his heels. 
In many a battle : — thonah my years an- few, 
'i'hey fell on a good fighting time, thank fortune ! 

MOHTOX. 

Still von must grant us Chalmers' rijrht to judce 
As well as yours ; and ours to judge between yon. 
But, to cut short all ditVerenee, I '11 go 
Myself. As you say, Ruthven's tongue alone 
Can plead the cause of MTirray ; and his cause 
Is our's, and Scotland's. — If I find a stir 
Of life-blood in his pidse, I '11 raise it to 
A throb shall beat with passion. 

DOUGLAS. 

Then you '11 work 
A miracle ! 

MORTON. 

I'll wake him from the sleep 

Of death itself, to plead his country's cause. 

DOUGLAS. 

^Ve'll SCO you to the gate, and wish you well. 

MORTOX. 

Then let 's not creep, wliile time is galloping. 



[^E.rnint. 



SCENE ir. 

A Chamher in RriiivrN's House. 
RutnvEN rccUnini/ on a couch. Catherine stanJint/ hu him. 

CATHERINE. 

•Mv father, are vou better now ? 



K) :\[AUY STUART. [act i. 

RUTH VEX. 

Look out 

O'er yonder hill, where winter, breaking up 
His snowy camp, is hastening to be gone. 
Such is my state ! 

CATHERINE. 

And yet, that gentle sleep. 

From which you 'vc just awakened, gives me hope. 

The crisis past, you Avill be well again. 

RUTHVEN. 

It may be so ; but what have I to wish for 
In life ? — IMy country's past a sick man's help, 
And past a sane man's hope ! 'Tis gone to ruin ! 
I've nothing left to wish — to care for, now. 

CATHERINE. 

Am I then nothing to you ? O, my Father ! — 
Let me not lose your love — or, if I must, 
Let it be some time hence, — that I may play 
The cheat for once, and die before it come. 

BUTHVEN. 

Talk not of dying — even in fancy talk not. 
I may not be a gentle father, Kate, 
I^ut I'm a loving one. The bird, that feeds 
Her young with her own flesh, is harsh of note, 
Compare her with the lark that quits her brood 
To sing in upper air — O Kate — you know not. 
How dear you arc to me. 

CATHERINE. 

I do — I do, 

My father — and I bless you for 't ! But come — 

For now I know von love me, will not leave me. 



Hi'ENE H.] MAIfV STl'AIM'. 17 

Xur sond mo from you, — I may tell you now 
Tho Qui-on desires my presence at the Court ; 
'Twas but a moment since, her mission reached mc. 

lUTUVKN. 

It must not be : — I cannot spare you, Kate : 

I cannot part with you. She has her friends 

From every region of the quartered globe : — 

Let that content her. But, of this same Court 

You spoke of, prythec tell mo what in all 

Its rare attractions pleased your fancy most, 

When vou were there ? The ball! the tournament I 

CATHERINE. 

Of all I saw or heard, the Signer's music 
Was that which won my lieart. 

RUTHVEN. 

Indeed ! 

CATHERINE. 

Oh, had you heard him too ! 

You would have said, he was of Orpheus spnmg. 

Or taught his art by syrens, or had traced 

The mermaid's plaint at sea, and caught it on 

His haq) from the wild wave — or, bolder still. 

Had mounted to the spheric hannonies. 

And, where the rolling planets hymn to Heaven, 

Touched the wrapt choir. 

RDTHVEN. 

Give o'er this ill-judged praise ; 
It sounds unseemly from a maiden's lips. 
Mark me. I hate that Rizzio from my soul. 
I hato him for his country ; his religion : 
He's a magician too, and practises 
Cpon tho Qurr-n with spoils. Imj) of tin- devil f 

c 



18 MARY STUART. [act. i. 

He plays the part of Belzebub in Scotland, 
And sells us all to Rome. Beware of him ! 

\^A knocking at the door. 
How now ! more visitors ? — Who is 't tliat knocks ? 

MORTON (without). 
Commend me to Lord Ruthven. 

Enter Servant. 

CATHERINE. 

'Tis your friend's 

The Earl of Morton's voice. 

RUTHVEN. 

I '11 see the Earl. [_Exit Servant. 

Leave mc, my child : I '11 call you soon again ; 
My heart will miss you. 

CATHERINE. 

O my dear, dear father ! 

'Tis joy to see you thus revived. [Exit, 

RUTHVEN. 

Revived ! 

Disease hath worn me from a giant's bulk 

To an anatomy ; melted my flesh, 

Like wax away at the slow fire of pain ; 

And that incurable malady, old age, 

Sits on my heart, and sinks me to the grave. 

Ha ! IMorton, welcome ! 

Enter Morton. 

MORTON. 

How is 't with my friend ? 

RUTHVEN. 

He lives. 

MORTON. 

Improves, too. Hope 's a good physician ; 

If art should fail, there's strcngtli in nature still. 



KKNi: 11.] MWIY STUART. 19 

RUTIIVKN. 

Yt'^ ; Nvlien the linil)S are voung, the sinews free. 

The very bones elastic ; but, in age, 

\Veak, withered, and though bent, unbending age. 

The healing otfice of the blood is o'er, 
And nature's self is on the side of waste 

\ik1 dis.-iolution. 

MOKTOX. 

Talk not so, nor think so ; 
lieineniber -what yoji have been. 

RUTIIVEN. 

riiat s my torment : 

l'\)r now what am I, grovelling in the dust 
I'^ven of mine own decay ? My sword is bent. 
My helmet rusted, and the standard brave 
That, like a skirt of 3Iars, shook overhead. 
In the high wind of battle, clings with mould. 
I have no strenjjth : what can the dNinjj do, 
J Jut, in the base gradation of their fate. 
Become the dead, and rot ? 

MORTON. 

'Tis on recor<l 

That Cie.sar was adiUct to faintings, fit«, 
NVhen he made Rome his footstool: — I5ut remember, 
His strength was in himself: — his weakness was 
A thing of earth : — he spumed it as an alien. 
And, standing on the summit of the Age, 
I.ijoked down upon intiniiity ! 
Uuthvcn! the nobles of this once proud realm, . 
Abandoned l)v the King, detested bv 
I The Queen, opj)oscd by fortune, ami forsaken — 
I grieve to say it— by the people's love, 
^Vhieh lives not longer thiiu prosperity — 



20 MARY STUART. [act i. 

Look to you as their leader ! If you spurn 'em 
There is no single chance for Scotland, but 
Submit to Rizzio's yoke ! 

RUTHVEN. 

Fate strike the land 

With famine first, or with the spotted plague ! 

Rizzio's ! to Rizzio's yoke ! you should not talk 

Of Mountebanks, as you would talk of Kings; 

Nor mix the lofty crime of jiower's abuse 

With rascal vices, such as crawl about 

The heart of such a wretch as Rizzio \ 

MORTON. 

I speak my fear. 

RUTIIVEN. 

Then cease to fear, and speak 
More like yourself. 

MORTON. 

The fire of that rebuke 

Shows Ruthven still alive : I w^U have hope 

For Scotland now. 

RUTHVEN. 

"Whatever I can do 

To roll back ruin from my native rocks 
Into the sea, I will adventure with you. 
We must not be the slaves of sycophants, 
Nor crouch to fiddling tyrants, while we have 
A spot of ground to stand on, or lie under. 
From this time forth I 'm one of vou again. 

MORTON. 

I thouofht it would be so: I said it would. 

Ruthven, your hand: I thank you for our country — 

But to the end in view. There are petitions 

From Edinburgh — from Dumfries, Perth, and CJlasgow — 



SCENE II.] MAliY STUART. 21 

I'niyini,' for Murray's imnlon and ret-all : 

If, when your hoalth allow, you would j)rc!^t.ut. 

And by your sitcech enforce their arginnent 



RUTHVEN. 

Nay, 'tis not that alone can save the state. 
Rizzio must be got rid of — Does the Queen 
Di^tingllisll him, as she was wont to do 
Before her marriatre ? 



.MORTON. 



-More so still, her bounty 
Heaps riches, favours on him. 

RUTHVEN. 

Then 'tis plain 

We must be rid of him — I see the way. 

Wc must search out the guilty secrets of 

This court, and bare them to the public gaze — 

The hidden story of the Bavonne league 

Must be unravelled ; and whatever tends 

To set the King anil Queen at variance nursed. 

And cherished into life. 

MORTON. 

'Twere well to do 't — 
lint how is 't to l)e done ? 

RLTHVEN. 

As every thing 

That 's great and difficult, is done by patient 

And persevering toil. You 've seen a pebble 

Washed whiter than the fleeces roimd the moon, 

And made a thing of c(j.<t and ornament, 

By the untiring wave, Tlicre 's a deep moral 

In that small truth : the wave, the cca.sele.>:S wave 

Hints to the mind the secret of its enerirv. 



22 MARY STUART. [act i. 

3I0RT0N, 

AVc look to you, my friend, for help and counsel. 

RUTHVEN. 

Morton, those same petitions, that you spoke of — 
Are they yet come ? 

MORTON. 

By this time some of them 

Must have arrived — I'll go and see to 't, <piickly. 

RUTHVEN. 

What is 't o'clock ? 

MORTON. 

The last that struck was four. 

RUTHVEN. 

That 's late i' the day ; — yet, without further pause. 

See there l)c sent a trusty messenger 

To Ilolyrood. Let him entreat o' the Queen 

A private audience for an ailing man. 

I '11 nuike the prayer of those petitioners 

Speak out. 

MORTON. 

So soon, my Lord ? 

RUTHVEN. 

It cannot be 

Too soon. Is not our country sinking — gasping i 

AVheu Ruin's ireful tooth is in the flesh, 

An instant is an age. But go — I have 

Another scheme to manage in your absence : 

It flashed across my mind, while we were speaking. 

MORTON. 

This is indeed a happiness : 'twill cheer 
Our drooping friends. 

RUTHVEN. 

Let them be comforted. 

Farewell, — no words — they fill the jjlace of action. 

[_KeU MouToN. 



scF.NR II.] :mary sxrAirr. l>:{ 

Enter Catherine. 
Xow, Kate ! coiue hiihiT, Kate ! antl hear good news. 
Heaven aiul the lively peril of the times 
Have rl"lited nie. — Yon r father lives asfain. 

CATnEUI.NE. 

O, not with words, bnt in my silent heart, 
I thank the Heavens fur this. 

RCTHVEN. 

And thank them too 

For other joys, than old men's lives can give. 

You must to Court, my girl. 

CATHERINE. 

To Court ! — I thought 
'Twas not your wish. 

ULTHVEN. 

But now, mv mind is chansed. 

CATHERINE. 

Yet why dismiss me from my duties here 

So suddenly ? — 'Tis true, your health revives : 

But in a little time 't^v^ll more revive, 

And I be happier, without the fears 

That now would haunt me — I should dream of you, 

And see you on your sick bed languishing, 

And I not near to chafe your aching brow. 

Or kiss your l)urning hand. — Let me not leave you ! 

RUTIIVEN. 

Come, come, shake oft" this weakness : get you ready. 

A maid like you should learn to look abroad — 

And where the great are found, be found amongst 'em — 

Besides, I have my motives — what they are 

You need not now be told : But go, and henceforth 

Consider Holyrood your home. 



24 MARY STUART. [act r. 

CATHERINE. 

Oil, no — 

My home is with my father. 

RUTHVEN. 

So it is. 

Hero, in his heart, where you and life are one. 
But there are claims affection's self must yield to. 
Mark — as you love your country, and the order 
Of nobles in whose station you were born, 
And the religion in whose path you walk : 
In short, as you love all that should be loved. 
And in that all include myself, your father, 
'Tis fitting you should lend a helping hand 
To those great interests. 

CATHERINE. 

What can I do, 

A treinbling maid, incapable and weak, 

To serve such interests ? 

RUTHVEN. 

Have you not eyes 

And ears, to see and hear ? Observe what passes 

At Court. Observe the Queen and Rizzio. 

CATHERINE. 

Ha ! 

Am I to act the spy ? 

RUTHVEN. 

By Heaven, you drive 

My temper past the stretch of patience ! — Spy ! — 

The word was coined to frighten fools from truth. 

CATHERINE. 

But is 't an office that becomes your daughter ? 

RUTHVEN. 

To save a nation, we must not be nice 



scKNF. II.] MAlv'V STTAirr. 

Ahout the means. — If men will saeriilcc 
Themselves, their wives, and ehildren, to deserve 
Tlie name of patriot, 'tis a ]>roof that ruli's 
Of common life are abrogate, and void. 
In this o'erwhelmintT elaim. (Jo, do as I 
Command yon. 

CATHERINE. 

Sir, you are 

My father : I must needs obey your mandate. 

RUTUVEX. 

Xow that 's well said ; 'tis like my gentle Kate, 
My own obedient Kate. Rut you look pale. 
I cannot bear such looks from you, my child ; 
'Tis not what death can bring to me, but what 
It may take from me, fills my soul ^vith fear. 
Look better, Kate. 

CATnERINE. 

I will in time, my father. 

RUTIIVEN. 

I hope you will ! — In very selfishness 

1 hojic you will — or I shall soon be nothing. 



[^B.reunt. 



F,NI» OF ACT I. 



26 MARY STUART, [act ti. 



ACT 11. 

SCENE I. 

Holyrood House. An Open Court. 

Suitors leaking before the door. 

Enter George Douglas and Chalmers. 

CHALMERS. 

You 're an unwilling visitor to Court ? 

DOUGLAS. 

Unwilling and unwelcome. I hate Rizzio ; 

And he returns it. Once he sneered at me 

Because I did not walk into the world 

Through the church door. He should have paid his life for 't, 

But that Lord Morton struck my blade aside, 

And saved his fiddle-strinsfs. 

CHALMERS. 

'Twas not fair play. 
But who are these ? 

DOUGLAS. 

All suitors, as I guess ; 

Come, like ourselves, to swell the great man's levee. 

Enter Garcia, ^D^th Papers^ S^c. The Suitors crowd round him. 

First Suitor. 
Is Signer David, — is the Secretary 
At leisure ? 

GARCIA. 

lie will ]iass anon this way. 



8CENE I.] >IA1{Y STrAKT. 27 

First Suitor. 
I come to bog his interest with the Queen. 

GARCIA. 

lie '11 give you audience in the proper course. [_E.nt 

DOrCLAS. 

Mark you that lofty phrase — " He'll give you audience!" 
He'll condescend his ear. — It makes one's blood boil. 

CHALMERS. 

Kc^p down your cholcr, if you 'd speak him fiiir. 
Look how they crowd, and cringe, and crawl to him. 

Enter Rizzio, tcith Letters. 

First Suitar. 



Second Suitor. 
Third Suitor. 



Good Signor ! 

•Mgnor David ! 

.Signer Rizzio ! 

Second Suitor. 
Most honorable Secretarj' ! 

CHALMERS. 

Soh! 

They '11 make a king of him at last. 

DOUGLAS. 

lie's that 

Already, if, to wield the functions, be 

To be a king. 

RIZZIO. 

I cannot hear you now. 

First Suitor. 

But one word, fjignor ; I have a brave son, 

^Vho deems it misery to be unknown : 

A word from you would lift him to distinction. 



28 MARY STUART. [act ii. 

Second Suitor. 
I liave a brother, who, in fighting fields, 
Ilath won his way through danger to neglect : 
A helping hand from you would make his fortune. 

RIZZIO. 

Wo '11 talk of this another time — not noAV ; 
For I am pressed l)y matters of deep moment. 
Your cause shall fare no worse for your consenting. 

Fi7'st Suitor. 
We will not trespass further, noble Signor. 

\_Exeimt Suitors^ bowing. 

DOUGLAS. 

They say the Devil has his worshippers, 

And I believe it. — Sir, a word with you. \_Coniing clown. 

IIIZZIO. 

Ila ! gentlemen ! I pray you pardon me — 
I saw you not before. 

DOUGLAS. 

We know what 'tis 
To wait. Sir. 

RIZZIO. 

But you should not practise it, 

If I had seen you. Is there any thing. 

So poor a man can do to serve you, Sirs ? 

DOUGLAS. 

Nothing. Our suit is to Ilcr Majesty — 

And from the Lords of Morton and of Ruthven. 

RIZZIO. 

I thought Lord Rutliven was abed, and ill ? 

DOUGLAS. 

But there are two ways out of sickness ; — one 
Is death : the other is recovery : 
He chose the latter. 



sciAE I.] .MAIiY STUAHT. 2\) 

UTZZIO. 

Ami a ])riulont choice. 

But what has he ? what can he have to ask 

Of the Queen's favour ? 

CHALMERS. 

To be honoured with 
\ jirivate audience, that he may deliver, 
Willi his own hand, petitions from the people. 

RIZZIO. 

You know, the Secretary should present 
Such documents. 

CHALMERS. 

But then, a Lord, mcthinks 

May claim some relaxation of the ndc. 

RIZZIO. 

A friendly Lord. 

DOUGLAS. 

And who says Ruthven 's not so ? 

RIZZIO. 

Sir, 'tis enough, the Queen will listen to 
Lord Morton ; but I cannot answer for 
The other Lord. 

DOL'OLAS. 

Then, why presume for cither ? 

RIZZIO. 

Presume ? 

DOUGLAS. 

lia I Does the word uUend your IIii,diuess? 

RIZZIO. 

It is not gracious, Sir, to taunt me thus, 
NVhen I besj>eak you fairly, ^\'llat I said 
Was in obedience, not in jiride : I dare not 
Mention Lord Ruthven to the Queen. 



30 MARY STUART. Qact ii. 

DOUGLAS. 

And why ? 

Because an insect buzzing round her ear 

Hath trickled poison in 't. Why, 'twas but now, 

Not weeks, nor days, but some few hours ago, 

The Queen received his daughter as a friend : 

Is 't possible she can account the father 

An enemy ? 

RIZZIO. 

'Tis not for me to say ; 

But what my orders arc I must abide by. 

DOUGLAS. 

This comes of harbouring knaves and sycophants. 

CHALMERS. 

Douglas, be patient. 

RIZZIO, 

Let him rail, good Sir : 

My duty to the Queen forbids retort ; 

And so I take my leave, to spare disturbance. \_Exit. 

CHALMERS. 

Wc 've lost our suit. 

DOUGLAS. 

'Tis all the better : Ruthven 

Will urge the strong petitions still more strongly 

Before the open Court.— Let's hasten to him. \_Exeunt. 



sci-NE II.] MARY STUAirr. .11 



CELINE. 



MARGUERITE. 



A State Apartment in Holyrood House. 

QrEEN, CoiNTESs OF Argyle, Marguerite, and Celine. 

Ladies discovered lauf/hiyiff. Catherine apart. 

QUEEN. 

I lark 'ye, Argyle! Is 't fitting they should laugh thus ; 
'I'alk thus, and bear thus hard upon our cousin 
Of England ? She 's a maiden Queen, you know ! 

MARGUERITE. 

She 's an old witch. 
A red haired witch. 
A grey one. 

ARGYLE. 

Both red and grey ; a sweet variety. 

MARGUERITE. 

'Tis said, her heart hath felt the power of love. 

CELINE. 

And welcomed it, or fame has much belied her. 

QUEEN. 

slanderers ! Wliy ! a <iueen fares with your tongues 
No better than a chambermaid. But where 's 
Our Secretary, Rizzio ? 

CELINE. 

The last time 

1 saw the Signor, he was on his knees 
Before the picture of your Majesty 
Tliat hanjrs i ' tli' Hall. Thinkinf; himself alone, 
lie jioured forth such sweet raptures to the picttire, 



32 



MARY STUART. 



[^ACT II. 



>#, 



That if 'twere any thing but oil and canvas, 
'T would have walked down to him. 

QUEEN. 

Yes, if it had 

Your love of flattery. 

Enter Rizzio rmlk papers. 
But here he is ; 
Now, Signor, what are these ? 

RIZZIO. 

Letters, so please 
Your Majesty. 

QUEEN. 

Come they from France ? 

RIZZIO. 

From France, 
And Enoland too. 



[jCriving letters. 



QUEEN. 

And what has England now to say to us ? 

RIZZIO. 

Some new remonstrance touching your late marriage. 

QUEEN. 

Let her remonstrate with her looking-glass 

Against her small grey eyes, and freckled face. ^Reads. 

Ha ! look you here ! She calls my lord and husband 

The King, her servant ! What ! are Kings and Queens 

But vassals to this liaughty woman's pride ? [^Flourish. 

RIZZIO. 

Madam, the King, the Ambassador of England, 
And all your Court approach. 

QUEEN. 

I 'm glad to see 

The Ambassador, that he may know my mind. 



srKNF. M.] 3IARY STUART. 33 

Enter the King, Court, Ambassador, Bothwell, c^r. 
King and Queen x/^ 
So, Sir ! your Queen wouM (jucen it every wlu-ro ; 
Aye, even in Scotland, as this protest show s. 
Anil her known suecour to the traitor, ^fnrray. 

AMBASSADOK. 

Beseech you, Mailani, to think lightly of it : 
The marriage o'er what can jirotesting signify ? 

QUEEN. 

'Tis strange, niethinks, she has not yet protested 

Against the unlicensed rising of the sun ; 

The flowing of the tides ; the mad career 

Of winds, and other insubordinate acts 

Whiih unsubmissive nature practises ! 

Yet, let her look to her own crown, or rather 

To that she calls her own ; and say, if right 

Were done between us, who should reign in England ? 

AMBASSADOR. 

I dare n<jt. Madam, for the love I bear 

Your Majesty, report so rash a speech 

To England's (Vmrt— the answer would be war. 

BOTHWKLL. 

Well, Sir, suppose it war ! 

RIZZIO. 

My Lord, forbear — 

War should be met, as wise men meet misfortune. 

With manly temper, not with levity : 

A demon's breath alone should fan the flame. 

QUEEN. 

Ri/zio advises rightly. 

Sir Nicholas, inform the Queen, your misiress. 
That, of our own free will ;hi<1 royal poucr. 

i: 



^^4 MARY STUART. [act ii. 

We 've ta'cn tJie P^arl of Darnley to our tlirone. 
'Tis done ; and that 's our answer. 

AMBASSADOR. 

Gracious Madam ! 

I will repeat your answer faithfully. {^Bxit with suite. 

DARNLEY (descending from t/ie throne). 
What ! no appeal to mc ! to none but Rizzio ! 
They rule the land between 'em : let 'em rule it. [os^W^. 

QUEEN (descending from the throne.) 
You 'A^e heard, my Lords, the insolence of England. 
'Twere well her pride stopped here — but we have Icamt, 
By sure advices, she gives succour and 
Protection to our enemies. There 's Murray : 
You. know what I have done and suffered for him. 
His titles and estates were all the mit 
Of this fool hand ; yet now he turns upon it ! 
Elizabeth abets his hostile purpose ; 
Nay, more, supplies him with the means of our 
Annoyance — is this well ? 

RIZZIO. 

'Twill come at last 

To blows with England's Queen. 

QUEEN. 

I seek it not, » 

But, if 'tis forced upon mc, let it come. 

DARNLEY. 

She 's all the sovereign ; — no appeal to me ! 

But what am I ?— She has her councillor. [^aside. 

MELVILLE. 

Madam, the King seems moved, 

QUEEN, 

How now, my Lord ! 
Has aught displeased you ? 



.c£Mi II.] 31 All Y STUART. :<o 

DARNLEY. 

\o ; 'tis nothiiijT — but 

riic vision of the inatrimoiiial crown 

Will sometimes cross mv thought. 

QUEEN. 

Remember, Sir, 
Vou are a King. 

HARNLEY. 

Yes, yes, you call me King, 
As slaves are called by mighty Ciesjir's name. 
To mock their wretchedness more bitterly : 
1 thank you for the boon. 

QIEEX. 

< > ! I)andev, Damlev ! 

Have I not done enough in doing all ? [_A Pa<je enters. 

PAGE. 

Madam ; the Lonis of Ruthven and of Morton, 
Crave, with the younger Douglas, and some others. 
Permission to approach your Majesty. 

QUEEN. 

Admit them ; we 've almost forgot their faces. 

Enter livTn\Es^ Mortox, Douglas, Ciialmer.s, Maitlam'. 
Lindsay, and others. 

You 've ta'en us by surprise, my Lord ; w c thought 
Your sickness more acute. 

RUTHVEN. 

(ireat Madam, there 

Are claims that sickness self must yield to : di-atli 

.Vlone can cancel them. I am deputed 

By hundreds— thousands— of your Majesty's 

Most l(»yal subjirts. to lay at your feet 

Tluse, tlu'ir jictition?-. 



3(5 MARY STUART. [act ii. 

QUEEN. 

What 's the prayer they urge ? 

BUTHVEN. 

In chief, the pardon of the Earl of Murray. 

QUEEN. 

Hear this, my Lords : his pardon ! Murray's ! that — 
Wliat shall I call him ? 



Call him what he is — 
Your brother. Madam. 

Then, the baser he, 
To be my foe. 



RUTHVEN. 



QUEEN. 



RUTHVEN. 



And the more blessed you. 
To be his pardoner. 

QUEEN. 

His ! his ! that traitor's ! 

Never — so help me heaven, and as I hope, 

Myself, for mercy ! 

RUTHVEN. 

Ha ! mark that ! you hope it ; 

O ! give it to that hope. You cannot tear — 

Tear, with your delicate hand, the bonds that nature 

Tied with her own : — you cannot put to death 

Affection in your living bosom : — no !^ 

Pride, passion, or some bitter ccstacy 

May, for a moment, hide it from yourself. 

But there it is, mixed in the blood that sweeps 

The circle of your being, to revive 

Again, when the rash fit has spent its rage. 

And mercy claims her sway. 



SCENE 11.] MARY STl-AKT. 37 

(iUEEN. 

Should mercy shut 
Her eyes to (jfuilt ' 

RUTIIVEN. 

No ; but with open eyes 

Should pardon it : for what is mercy ? Is 't not 

Forcnvenoss i And what is for^vcncss, hut 

Remission of the penalty of crime ? 

If we must keep our mercy for the guiltless, 

^^'e mi'dit as well onve alms to rich abundance, 

Fire to the tropic's arid bosom, frost 

To the baked pole, and raindrops to the deep ! 

The fault you hint at is in mercy's self, 

That spreads her wing above the head of guilt, 

And saves it for repentance. 

QITEEN. 

Say no more. 

BOTH WELL. 

Ruthven kncjws well that Murray still persists 
In plotting for the ruin of his country. 

RUTHVEN. 

Ila ! Bothwell, is that you ? I thought so ! You 
Know where to plant the foot, when a man 's down ; — 
And Murray 's down. 

UOTIIWELL. 

And you know how to take 
The part of Rebels. 

RDTIIVEN. 

Not, when you were one. 

DAliNLEY. 

But is 't not true, what Bothwell says of Murray < 
lias he not swum it ? 

Kill IV EN. 

O ! when liothwell swears, 



38 MARY STUART. [act ii. 

I know what side the truth 's on. 

BOTIIWELL. 

Sneering villiiin ! \j,ottcldng his sioord. 

UUTHVEN, 

Psha ! Take your hand from olFthat heated steel — 
' Twill hum your fingers else. 

BOTUWELL. 

You need not fear — 

I thirst not for your blood. 

RUTHVEN. 

I know not that ; 

But this I know— my blood, Sir, hath its priee ; 
And he must be no niggard of his own, 
Who takes it at the cost 'twill put him to. 

RIZZIO. 

My Lords, is this a tone for the Queen's presence ? 

RUTHVEN. 

What crawling thing is that, whose hiss I hear '! 

DOUGLAS. 

'Tis Rizzio ! — David Rizzio ! 

RUTHVEN. 

lie, who plays 

The lute, and sings ! Back, minion, to your ]dace ! 

Your office is to whisper. Sir ; to whisper — 

Not to speak out like a man ; for that were e'en 

As if a mole should strive to scale the wall. 

Instead of undermining it. Look to 

Your occupation ; — 'twill be better for you — 

Neglecting it, you '11 lose your way, and fall 

Wretchedly into mischief. 

RIZZIO. 

Still I say 

You ought not to forget. Her Majesty, 

The Queen is here. 



s(KNF. II.] MAIfY STUAHT. 39 

RUTUVEN. 

iSo is tlio Kiiij; here too ! — 

Ami asks no upstart to assume his power. 

DARNLF.Y. 

' Tis tnio, that Kizzio t.akes too much upon hiui — 

QUEEX. 

Ho takes my part. Is that a fault ? to take 
His mistress' part against that scornful man? 

RUTHVEX. 

I tlo beseech you, Madam, panlou me — 
I lien<l with reverence to the throne and you — 
Rut, when I in Imrked at by so many curs, 
Passion will leap the bounds of ceremony, 
And anjicr bite its cords : — forfnve me, JIadam. 

QUEEX. 

Pass to the next Petition. 

RUTHVEX. 

There is yet 

Another prayer in this — it humbly begs 

For the dismissal of the foreigners. 

QUEEN. 

What have they done ? 

KCTUVEN. 

No matter — they are foreign. 

Our ancestors were wont to hate that name — 

And their example still should govern us. 

QUEEN. 

But they 're all dead. You would not have the dead 

Govern the living ! — If the dead could peep 

Out of their graves, they would not know this world 

To be the world they used to tread upon ; — 

Why should they rulr it then ? Death knows no change ; 



40 .AIARY STUART. [act it. 

But life is full of changes, like the sky 
With many Avcathcrs ; and our planet rolls 
Amongst a thousand scattered influences 
All turning upon change. 



Rizzro. 



Lord Ruthven speaks 

As if he 'd stamp upon the rolling earth 

And cry out — " stop !" to the spheres. 

DOUGLAS. 

Peace ! Dastard, peace ! 

My Lord ! he sees your health has suffered lately ! — 

That (jives him courage. 

RTTTHVEN. 

Be 't SO, 'tis his instinct. 

The cur will bark to see the lion fall. 

RIZZIO. 

'Tis possible, you may o'er-rate yonr lion, 

And under-rate your cur. I 've known such slips — 

But why denounce me ? 'Sdeath, I 'm not a womi — 

A thing without a name, save the vile sound 

That covers all the species ignominiously ; — 

I have a man's heart beating in my breast. 

And a man's anu to jniard it. 

DAUNLEY. 

Madam, are 

The nobles to be taunted by your minion ? 

QUEEN. 

If nobles will begin the strife of words, 

I cannot regulate its course to please them — 

My business in this audience is to listen ! 

But those who l)reak down fences should not murmur 

That the way 's clear for others as for them. 



-srENE n.] 31AliV STUAliT. 11 

UAUNLEY. 

I tlioiiiilit vou 'd take this course to succour him. 

QCEEN, 

Indocd, Sir ! As for these petitioners, 
Your clients, my Lord Kuthven, let them know 
That we will duly weigh their least requests. 
And to our best of judgment, deal with 'em. 
Rizzio, attend us — we shall need your skill 
In harmony to drown the discords here. 

[_Flourish. Exit QvKEy, /ollotced li/ Ylizzjo, djc. 

DARNLEY. 

Ruthven ? 

RUTHVEN. 

You called me ? 

DARNLEY. 

Yes ! I M speak with you . 

[^Ruthven dismisses Douglas. 

Ruthven, be my friend, for I have need. 

KUTHVEN. 

1 am your friend — what can I do to serve you ? 

DARNLEY. 

How should the wronged be served, but by revenge ? 
Is every woman, think you, music's slave ? 

ruthven. 
There was a Queen of Egypt once — I mean 
The jilt that made a fool of Antony — 
And she loved music too ! We know the dance 
She led her dupe. — By heaven ! I 'd rather die 
( )f Egypt's plague tlian trust its Cleopatras ! 

DARNLEY. 

You M say that I 'm deceived, disgraced, dishonoured. 



42 MARY STUART. [act ii. 

RUTH YEN. 

Do you suspect them, tlien ? 

DARNLEY. 

Suspect ! — By heaven 

You 've ahiiost stopped my breath with a word ! Y^ou dropped 

Some hints of this before, and so did Morton ; — 

Hints that have scorche<l me with the penal fire 

Of this world's hell ; and yet the miscreant lives ! 

Will no one rid me of that David ? 

RUTHVEN. 

Hush ! Keep back your vengeance 'till we 'vc further proof. 

DARNLEY. 

You talk of vengeance, as if 'twere an art 
Men learnt at school, and not a rooted instinct. 

RUTHVEN. 

I talk of vengeance, as an act of reason. 
Why does the lightning's flash so seldom kill, 
While the poised engine of inferior fire 
Counts every round to death ? Because the one 
Bursts from the bosom of the thunder cloud. 
And one is thought — directed. Leave revenge 
To time and me : 'twill not be lost between us. 

Enter Douglas. 
But look ! George Douglas comes again ! How now ? 

DOUGLAS. 

The Commons are assembled to discuss 
The subject of the matrimonial crown. 
I thought it right to warn you. 

DARNLEY. 

There again 

My wrongs cry out. The Queen declines to use, 

AVitliout their sanction, her prerogative. 



SCENE III.] 3lAiiY STlAliT. i;{ 

RUTIIVEN. 

1 '11 try what may be done to win their favour. 

Come, Douglas : as we go, I 've something for 

Your private ear, to help the working of 

( hir i>hin3. Farewell, 8ir : when we meet again, 

1 hope to bring the Crown along with me. [^IiJxeutil. 



SCENE III. 

The Gallery. 

The Queen, Countess of Argyle, Catherine, Celine, ]\Iak- 
GUERiTE, and Ladies, SfC. discovered. 

Rizzio at the Harp. Music. 

ARGYLE. 

Woukl you not augur, from his bended brow, 
Leaning on thought, he loved ambitiously ? 
And so he does ; but mark him, when he strikes 
The inagie string, and lifts his eyes to Heaven, 
As if he looked at inspiration. 

CATOERINE. 

O there 's a melody even in tlie pause 

And stoppage of his song ; for faney fills 

The resting plaec more sweet than others' nmsie 

\_Bold Music — S'l/mphoni/. 

QUEEN. 

Hark ! liark ! the eehoes ring. \_Air. 

(Leaning on Argyle.) Is it the soul 

Of genius, or the storm that wakes that note ? 

Or heaven or earth that tunes it to the swell 

Of mighty winds and tempests ? Hark, again 

The minstrel hangs his head in melancholy — \j"A "t"*'*^- 



44 MARY STUART. [act n. 

And now the zephyrs steal among the strings 

To touch his hand and die. — It was not falsehood 

That bade the poet fancy stones to move ; 

For there 's a spirit in creation, 

A mind in matter, captivate to song : — 

The very comet, in his random sphere, 

Obeys its voice, and smooths his bristling fires. 

To listen while the golden planets sing ; — 

The smallest clod of earth does, in its fair 

Proportion to the wheeling worlds above, 

Sustain the universal harmony, 

And follow nature in her heavenly round ! 

'Twas therefore truth, not falsehood, told how trees 

And stones could move, when music tried her skill ; 

And thus the poet's thought is justified ! 

CELINE. 

" Nay I '11 appeal at once to our good Queen \^to Catherine. 

" For her decision — Please your Majesty, 

" The Lady Catherine will contend with us 

" That Scotland boasts a brighter sun than France. 

MARGDERITE. 

" Why, now in truth does the sun ever shine on 't ? 

CATHERINE, 

" Ay, sweeter than on any other shore, 

" Tiie wind may blow on Scotland harshly, yet 

" Its breath is healtliful, and at winter's worst 

" Endurable, and when the summer comes, 

" 'Tis not a demon from the burning zone 

" Tliat fires our climate, but a genial power, 

" The sister of the spring illumines it. 

" O ! how the hills and valleys welcome her ! 

" The poorest weed that grows attempts a flower 

••' To cast it at her feet. 



sckm: hi.] MAKY ISTUAUT. L:, 

QUEEN. 

" TS'cll spoken, dear 

"• Enthusiast, lover of thy native land." 

But this is too akin to gravity, 

And we 've enow of that when business calls us. 

Come, what device ? We've no sour faces here, 

To make their sourer comments on our mirth ; 

So we '11 enact the matter of a play. 

In our court fashion — ha ! ha ! when the Simior wakes 

Out of his sUep. \_Polntinrf to Kizzio, icho is wraj>t in t/(oio//tt. 

UIZZIO. 

Forgive an absent mind, — 

And yet not absent neither; for my dream 

Was e'en where all my thoughts are. 

AIL 
But the play ! 
Let 's have the play ! 

QUEEN. 

I '11 take the heroine's part ; 

And, Rizzio, you shall thunder in the hero. 

CATUERINE. 

G )0il Heaven ! I Lis madness slipped its chain to make 

A show of Scotland's throne ? [_Aside. 

QUEEN. 

Now for the cue. [^Gocs to Rizzio. 

Suppose yourself some troubadour of old. 

And me the lady of your love. — Call down 

The muse from Heaven to lend her burning tongue, 

Tliat you may speak in fire : — there is my hand. 

Begin your speech with wax or alabaster. 

RIZZIO. 

What say you to the snow so white, so j)urc — 
So like the mind that prompts this beauteous hand 



46 MARY STUART. [act ii. 

To every gracious act ? Oh, Mary ! Queen ! 

The tongue that trembles to pronounce thy name, 

Can ill perform thy praise, unequalled fair, 

Surpassing all that over fable told 

Of loveliness. \_Kneeling^ ha is about to rise. 

QUEEN. 

Good minstrel, ere you rise, 

Wear this in token of your Queen's regard : 

Aroimd thy neck I twine the ribbon's coil. 

An emblem of the love that merit wins : 

And, pendent at thine heart, my likeness place 

To last [^Hanging a jiortrait round Ms neck. 

BIZZIO. 

Till death; for death shall find it there. 

QUEEN. 

Now, friends, your judgment on this moving scene — 
Which is the better actor — he, or I ? 

CELINE. 

The Queen, who still is best in every thing, 
Is best in this. 

QUEEN. 

Go to ! You flatter me. 

What says our thoughtful friend ? 

CATHERINE. 

If acting be 

The best that is the most unlike pretence, 
I vote the Signer first ; tho' both were better 
Than either ought to be. 

QUEEN. 

Tis well defined. 

'You're a just judge, and I confirm your judgment. 

But, Rizzit), we must mend our ways, and turn 



^CKNE in.] MARY STUART. J 7 

Worse actors to be more approved of. Come, 

Tlie i)lay is ended, and the banqnet waits, 

And welcome is already at the door, 

Impatient for your jialutation, [_Exeunl all but Kizzio. 

RIZZIO. 

Oil I tliat I were a troubadonr in<leed. 

And thou my lady love ! too charminjr Queen ! 

I do remember, when I saw lier first, 

She deifmed to notice and to honour me : 

I kissed her white hand, as the votary kisses 

Tlie waxen image of his patron saint. 

And then bejran the dream that ends in madness ! 

Come, then, thou bright perdition of the mind ; 

Thou bane of manly thought, and euteqirisc ; 

I^ut dearer than their fame, whate'er thou art. 

That in mysterious thraldom hold my soul ; 

I 'm thine, and though destmction yawn, I clasp thee ! — 

Garcia ! how now ? — "Whence come you ? 

Enter Garcia. 

GARCIA. 

From your friends. 

Who suffer much indijmitv, because 

Of your hifrh bearinj; to the nobles. They — 

Your friends, I mean — are discontent at this. 

RIZZIO. 

Indeed ! Then is 

Your mission to advise me how to crawl ? 

I 've had some stern instructors in that lesson. 

GARCIA. 

You feel too deeply these indignities. 

RIZZIO. 

Tis not so easy, as your thoughts may tell you, 



48 MARY STUART. L^ct ii. 

To bear insulting pride. You '11 say, despise it : 
But there 's a sting — a galling sting in scorn 
That finds the weaker part of nature out, 
And flincfs the nobler moral to the wind — 
Wouldst have me thank contempt ? 

GARCIA. 

I 'd teach you patience. 

RIZZIO. 

Observe how darkly Douglas scowls upon us. 
But patience is a virtue — you shall see 
That I can practise it. 

Enter Douglas and Chalmers. 

DOUGLAS. 

Is there no corner 

Free from these foreign reptiles ? 

RIZZIO. 

Come : he 's in 

A mood to quarrel now. We have no chance 

But instant flight. [ With affected fmmiliti/ to Garcia. 

There 's no way else to save us. 

GARCIA. 

I hope there 's some salvation in our own 
Right hands, if we 're put to 't. 

RIZZIO. 

No, that would be 

High bearing, and I 'm convert to the low. [ With a sneer. 

CHALMERS. 

They speak of us. 

DOUGLAS. 

Ay, let them. — Rizzio, I 
Owe you a favour for my mother's sake. 
You chafed her memory once, and, like a dog, 
Bark(!d at her fjravo. 



I-) 



^CENE III.] MAlfY STr AK'T. 1!) 

RIZZIO. 

'Twas in my passiou. Sir, 

A passion you provoked by fuiiler language. 

Hut as it is, I'm sorry for it — Forget it. 

DOUGLAS. 

Your sorrow is a cheat, — a coward's falsehood! 

GARCIA. 

l\ilschood ! Did you hear that i Coward and false ! 
Is your hand palsied ? — If you dare not use it, 

Q<o Kizzio, in great agitation. 
Give me the sword. ( offering to take his sworJ. 

RIZZIO. 

Hold off! mv sword's mv own. 

You see I can forbear ; — remember that. 

And so report it. As for this small man {^pointing to Douglass. 

With the great voice, I have no fear of him ; 

\\<: thunders, but not lightens, — harmless noise. 

DOUGLAS. 

Find me an equal who will tell me so. 
And mark how soon my sword 

UIZZIO. 

"What could it do i 

An ungrown boy would whip you through the ribs 
While you were looking for your courage to 
Persuade it from the scal)bard ! 

DOUGLAS. 

Foreiiin slave ! 






Again thou ly'st. 

KIZZIO. 

Take back the lie thrice-charged. 
For thee — thy ver\' name *s a lie ; thy place 
Is with the caitiffs, who take pride in shame. 
And know not how to feel even for their mothers. 



50 MARY STUART. [act ii. 

DOUGLAS. 

Ha, villain ! Draw ! Draw— and defend thy life. 

RIZZIO. 

Blows are the best defence when ruffians brave lis. \j,hey fight. 
Daunley, Morton, Lords., and Officers, 8[C. S^c. rush in. 

DARNLEY. 

Beat down their swords and seize 'em. Now what 's here ? 
A riot in the palace ! Rizzio ! You 
Shall answer this. 

RIZZIO. 

And Douglas, Royal Sir,— 

He shared the fault, and should the penalty. 

DARNLEY. 

Bear him to the strong chamber, [_poiniing to Rizzio. 

Till we 've time 
To sit in judgment on his great offence. 

RIZZIO. 

Remember, Sir, I claim — 

DARNLEY. 

Away with him. 

[Rizzio is home off'. Exeunt all hut Darnley. 
Now, now he 's in my power and he shall feci it. 
Before another night steals on the world 
I '11 rid myself of him. But where is Ruthvcn ? 
He promised soon to greet me with the news 
How the bloat Commons have decided on 
My title to the matrimonial Crown. — 
Let them beware. Rizzio shall feel my power, 
And all who brave my hate, shall taste my vengeance. 

{exit. 

END OF ACT II. 



SCENE I.] MARY STIAKT. 51 



ACT 111. 

SCENE I. 

An Apartment in tlic Palace. 

Enter Darnley ami Melville. 

Darnley pacing the Apartment. 

DAUNLEV. 

I must sec Kuthven, ere I deal with David. 

I must possess the matrimonial Crown, 

Ere I can think of aught ; — aye, e'en of vengeance. 

Look from the casement. Is there no one coming ? 

MELVILLE. 

None, please your Majesty ! 

DARNLEY. 

No Rutliven yet ! 

Go look acjain. There 's not a knave amoncrst 'cm 
Who brings me news he thinks will gall my pride, 
But seems as if it pleased him. 



MELVILLE. 

Yonder, Sir, 

Lord Ruthven comes at last. 

DARNLEY. 

'Tis well ! 'Tis well ! 

Comes he like one commissioned with a crown ? 

Where is he ? — 'Sdeath ! how .slow the sick man moves 

But may be 'tis th' intelligence he bears 

Is not worth moving to coimnunicatc. 



')2 MARY STUART. [act hi. 

Hold ! Here he comes : begone, and leave us. Now ! 
Is the Crown mine ? 

RuTiiVEN enters as the Attendant goes out. 

RUTHVEN. 

They have refused it, Sir. 

DARNLEY. 

Refused ! They know my power, and dare they for 
Their lives refuse ? AVhat reason did they give ? 
They had some reason, or some pretext whicli 
They called a reason, for adventuring ! 
What was 't ? 

RUTHVEN. 

Let me entreat your Majesty 

To be content with what you 've heard ; 't would rouse 

Your anger, and distress my tongue, to trace 

Their insolent proceeding further. 

DARNLEY. 

Nay- 
Speak, I command you. 

RUTHVEN. 

As you '11 have it so, 

Why so you shall. One of 'em said, the Queen, 

When she prt)claimed you King, usurp'd a pow'r 

Not her's by law. Another charged you with 

Truckling to Rizzio, and oppressing him 

When yon had gained your ends. All were against you. 

DARNLEY. 

And you heard all, and brought away your sword 
Covered up safely in its leathern case ! 
You should have spum'd, — denounced their villainy. 
Thrust back their foul decision through their teeth. 



SCENK I.] 



'SIARY STl'ART. 



53 



RUTH V EN. 

How, Sir ! 

I 'in not a bravo, nor a cut-throat, liirtil 

To stop men's mouths with niurdor when iht-v exerciso 

A civil riirht. 



Ha ! traitor! 

Traitor ! 

Slave ! 

King, you 're ungrateful. 

Dar's-t thou tell me so ? 
Tlieu take thv fate. 



DARNLEY. 



ItUTHVEN. 



DAKXLEY 



RCXnVEX. 



DARXLEY. 



[^ms/us at him wit/t his gicoril. 



RCTHVEN. 

[jtrikiwf the ivayrd from his haiul. 
Not from a hand like tliiue. 
Go, Sir ! Pick up your sword — you '11 find the fragments. 

DARNLEY. 

{_After a pause of great agitation. 
What have I done ? 'Twas madncs-s drove me to 
The desperate act. — Oh, liuthven ! Once ray friend, 
Canst thou fortnve ? 

RUinVE.V. 

If I couM not forffive, 

"^Miere would he Damley now ? 

Enter Morton. 
Ha ! Morton ! — vou 

Have come in time to rsiich tlic Kins his swurd : 
But wi|>e it first ; — the blade hath met a stain. 



54 MARY STUART. [act hi. 

MORTON. 

[Takes up the sword, atid presents it to the King. 
Receive it, Royal Sir. Rutliven, how 's this ? 
Methinks the ground 's no phace for such a weapon. 

RUTHVEN. 

Then, Morton, take my word, 'tis better there 
Than in bad hands that know not how to use it. 
But come ; what 's past is gone : let 's look before us. 
You 've business, may be, to despatch. 

MORTON. 

I came 

To ask the King what shall be done with Rizzio ? 

DARNLEY. 

Ruthvcn, our quarrel 's healed : you '11 not refuse 
To lend your counsel ? 

RUTHVEN. 

Sir, the course is plain. 

It needs no counsel. Let him have the form ^ 

Of trial : by all means the form : what else 

He gets, 'twill be for you to take good care of. 

DARNLEY. 

I '11 have him brought before me on the instant. 
Go, Morton, see it done. 

MORTON. 

He waits without : 

A moment will suffice to bring him here. \jxit. 

RUTHVEN. 

It were not wise that we should all assist 
In this transaction ; therefore I '11 withdraw. 
I gave my daughter cause t' expect me soon : 
But by the time you 've heard the charge, I will 
Return to meet you. 



SCENE I.] >rARY STUART. 55 

UAUNLEY. 

Fail not to attend. [^r.r{t Kutiiven. 

Xow for this whipster wliu reviles my power, 
Usurps my place, and makes his fortune by 
His impudence ! I '11 stop his proud career. 

Re-enter Morton, followed hy Rizzio, Garcia, George 
Douglas, Chalmers, Melville, c^r. 

^ MORTON. 

.Stand forward, Rizzio, at the King's command ; 
And you, George Douglas, the accuser, stand 
Oj)posed to him. 

daunley. 
{To Rizzio.) Are you prepared to plead 
To the oftence whereof you are accused ? 
Or would you, by a free acknowledgment, 
Tlirow yourself on our mercy ? 

RIZZIO. 

Royal Sir, 

Most willingly do I confess my fault 

So far as I have erred. But if 'tis meant 

(As I collect from what has reached mine ear) 

To charge me with the onset in th' assault — 

That I deny. The man who charges me — 

Young Douglas there — he was the first to strike. 

'Tis true I struck again, but then my sword 

Was less a weapon to me than a shield. 

MELVILLE. 

Stand back, my Lords ; make way there for the Queen. 

DARNLEV. 

How 's this ? The Queen ! Madam, 1 did not look 
To meet you here. 



i>G MARY STUART [act hi. 

Enter Queen, attended hy Ladies. 

QUEEN. 

No, Sir — we seldom meet ; 

But, as the fickle will of accident 

Has thrown us, by some strange mistake, together, 

I hope we shall agree. 

DARNLEY. 

I hope so, too. 

For the crown's honour and its dignity : 

I would support it, tho' I wear it not. 

QUEEN. 

What is the present stage the cause has reach'd ? 

DARNLEY. 

Douglas accuses Rizzio as th' aggressor 

In an assault upon his life ; and Rizzio 

Admits the assault, but not th' aggression, which 

He charges upon Douglas. 

Our palace was the scene of violence. 

Their witnesses are equal, it appears. 

In number, but if rank should turn the scale 

RIZZIO. 

Oh, Madam ! Pause before you so determine : 
Pause, and consider well. Truth has no ruh; 
Of rank : 'twas made for all mankind ; and must 
Be sought for in th* essential part of man, 
The mind, that is the man. 

DOUGLAS. 

'Tis ever thus 

lie talks of station with contempt; — there's scarce 

A lord in Scotland but has felt his tonffue. 

O 

RIZZIO. 

Say rather there are few but with their tongues 



riCKNE I.] MAKY STUAIJT. r>7 

Have injured me. They treat mc like a slave ; 

They call me base musician, mountebank ; 

They elbow me in court, frown on mc in 

The streets : they set their menials to insult me. 

Oh, 'tis fine pastime for the lordly pack 

To tear a poor man's self-resj^ect to pieces ! 

Then, if I call 'em to account, they jeer 

And laugh — that lau<;h is worse than death to me. 

^ DOUGLAS. 

Hark, how ho rails against the nobly bom ! 

RIZZIO. 

I do not rail ajrainst the noblv born 

"VN'hen merit stamps their claim. — I honour worth ; 

And rank— for aught I know, who cannot boast it — 

May help the good that nature must begin. 

But, when I see hard hearted pride rejoicing 

To crush the weak, by Heaven ! it drives me mad 

To think that one man should be bom for power, 

And t' other for oppression. 

DARNLEY. 

Will you hear 
This insolence ? 



QUEEN. 



Xot if I thought it such. 



DARNLEY. 

Tlien let's decide the cause, and stop the jJeading. 

QUEEN. 

We have no clue to guide us through the maze 
< )f contrariety. 

DARNLEY. 

But we can judge 

Between the credit due to men of worth 

And men of yesterday ? 



58 MARY STUART. [act nr. 

DOUGLAS. 

It asks no skill 

To weigh the credit of a base Italian. 

RIZZIO. 

But, wherefore base ? — Explain. Was Rome of old 
A land of baseness ? AVere her patriots base ? 
Were the great Casars knaves ? and Cicero ! 
Was he a cheat, and Horace a buffoon ? 
These were your base Italians ! 

DOUGLAS. 

Nay, you speak 

From books — I spoke of living men. 

RIZZIO, 

And I 

Of men who live for ever ! Men, whose names 

Were, like their souls, immortal ! — men who stood 

Upon the mountain top of the whole world, 

The very Ida of the intellect ! 

But, look again — I take a later day, 

When Italy and base Italians saved 

The wreck of learning, and the fountain springs 

Of liberty and glory from the Goth. 

What can you shew to match that matchless claim ? — 

The glorious East, that in its bosom wears 

The morning, like a jewel, never shone 

So bright, as when the gates of Italy 

Opened to let the flood of science out 

Upon the world, and gilded all the sphere ! 

You talk of base Italians ! Learn to read. 

And you *11 talk otherwise. 

DARNLEY. 

The Queen may choose 

To hear this boastful language, but it shall not 



SCENE I.] MAHY STIAHT. 59 

Turn lis from justice, in whose name and by 
Tlie weight and power of whose authority 
We banLd) you from Scotland. 

QUEEN. 

How! my Lord ? 

DARNLEY. 

Rizzio is banished from this land fur ever, 
Or I am King no more. 

"^UEEN. 

( )h, 1)0 a King ! 

Put on the real crown, the kingly mind. 

And spurn injustice, as the antipathy 

( )f your proud office, which is outraged by 

The very sound o' the name. 

DAKNLEY. 

I la ! would you plead, 

Bi'forc ray face, to save him ? Thus it is 

Your favour to him makes your name a byword 

On every ribbald tongue — 'Tis time 'twere changed. 

QUEEN. 

Is this a horrid dream, or a more horrid 
Reality ? Am I the Queen of Scots, 
Or, as I seem to be, some helpless >sTetch, 
Insulted by some high barbarian ? 
No, Sir ; I 'm still the Queen, and in the name 
<)f my prerogative, I here reverse 
Your sentence, and deliver David Rizzio 
From your injustice ! Rizzio, you are free ; 
Free, as the King himself, to live in Scotland ! 

RIZZIO. 

I know not what to say — My brain ! my brain ! 

QUEEN. 

Yet hold ! There 's yet one chance to save this broach. 

[_motio)ij! f>ack the Lords- 



60 MARY STUART. [act hi. 

Recall the hasty word your passion spoke ; 
Revoke the sentence by your own decree, 
And I, who set the Crown upon your head, 
AVill make it grow with greatness ! 

DABNLEY. 

'Tis in vain. 

I stand upon my right — You talk to marble. 

QUEEN. 

I talk to coarser and to harder stone. 

That never could be hewn into man's image, — 

The rock, the impenetrable rock. Farewell ! 

From this time forth our fates are separate. \_gomg. 

RIZZIO. 

Oh, Madam ! Royal Mary ! Let me speak 

Before you go. And yet, the monstrous charge ! 

Th' inhuman blasphemy ! It shocks my soul 

To give it so much entertainment 

As to expose it ! Sir, you are abused : 

Some fiend has whispered in your ear to damn you : 

Oh, drive the thought back to the hell it came from. 

Look there ! look there ! even at your Queen and AVife ! 

Is there no process of conviction quicker 

Than lightning strikes, to strike persuasion through you. 

Where virtue shines from such a heaven as that, 

And makes a doubt a crime ? 

DARNLEY. 

I '11 hear no more. 

QUEEN. 

'Twcre useless now, for now I 've done with yoii. 

{_Exit icitk Suite. 

DARNLEY. 

Why stand you there t' insult me with your presence ? 



scENi: I.] :\IARY STUART. «1 

Know you not you are free ? Begone ! [^fo Itizzio. 

Leave ine, my friends. [_Exeunt Conspirators^ Sfc. 

RIZZIO. 

Farewell, Sir ! 

The hour will conic yuu '11 think of this and weep ! [_Exit. 

DARNLEY. 

The hour is come I 11 think of this and vengeance. 
Xow, where is Rutliven ? 

Enter Ri'TUYEy, followed hy Catherine. 

RUTIIVEN. 

At your bidding, Sir, — 

With further proof to satisfy your mind. 

DARNLEY. 

I need no further proof. The Queen has snatched 
Her minion from my gripe ! 

RUTHVEX. 

That 's strong, indeed ! 

And yet there 's stronger still. 'Twill take you but 
A moment's time to hear. Stand forward, Kate. 
Look up, and tell the King what you have seen — 
For, mark me well ! I know what you liave seen — 
Since you have been at Court. 

CATHERINE. 

And was 't for this 

You brought me here ? I 've seen no wrong at Court, 

Or, if I did, 'tis not for mc to name it. 

RUTHVEN. 

Shrink not, my child : I do not ask you for 

One word beyond the simi)le facts you 've witnessed ; 

But justice calls for them. 

CATHERINE. 

What is 't you mean ? 



(52 :MARY STUART. [act m. 

RUTHVEN. 

There are but two short questions, and the answers 
Miiy be as short. In truth a word 's a volume. 
Was there a play jierformed at Court, in which 
The actors were the Queen and Rizzio ? 

CATHERINE. 

Heaven ! The Queen 's undone '• [_Aside. 

RUTHVEN. 

Speak — was there such a play ? 

CATHERINE. 

There was — in harmless mirth. 

RUTHVEN. 

And was her picture, by the Queen s own hand, 
Placed round the neck of Rizzio ? 

CATHERINE. 

'Twas so placed ; 
But then 

RUTHVEN. 

No doubt, in harmless mirth again. [to Darn ley. 

DARNLEY. 

'Tis proof on proof : their guilt 's as clear as day : 
So let us make their crime and punishment 
A lesson to the world. 

CATHERINE. 

Oh, Royal Sir, 

For mercy's sake impute not guilt to that 

Most innocent act ! My ftither was deceived : 

He heard it with a false construction 

From spies — from fiends, whose devilish art it is, 

When they tell truth, to tell it still untruly. 

RUTHVEN. 

Why will you harm yourself and vex the King ? 



8CENE I.] MARY STUAK'l. G3 

CATHERINE. 

I know not why my heart has grown so bohl, 

But I could speak before th' assembled earth 

In such a cause. Hear me, upon my knees. 

Remember, King, your Queen is innocent. 

By yon blcss'd beam of light, still warm from Ileav'n, 

That beam is not more innocent of darkness 

Than she of guilt. 

DARNLEY.^ 

Your facts disprove your oath. 

CATHERINE. 

No, on my life ; no, on my soul, they do not ! 

Try them in righteous scales ; dash the false weight 

(^f preconceived suspicion to the ground ; 

Allow for luinian weakness in the judge, 

As well as in th' accus'd, and you '11 not find 

Tliat facts arc traitors to the cause of virtue. 

ROTHVEN. 

Come, Sir — she wrings my soul. 

DARNLEY. 

Wc will not hear her. 



CATHERIKE. 



Justice hears all. 



[Exit Darnley. Catherine seizes 
RuTHVEN as he ufolloiciuff. 



Oh, stay, my father, stay ! 
Leave me not thus abandoned bv the thou5[ht 
That I have been the cursed cause of mischief 
To my kind patroness, the Queen. Speak to me 
One gentle word, for I am weak and faint. 
And may not long survive to trouble you. 

RUTHVEN. 

I thought I was all iron, but you 've found 



64 MARY STUART. [act hi. 

The way to melt the ore. Why do you talk 

Of weakness ? Is 't to wound your father's heart ? 

CATHERINE. 

no, no, no ' I love that heart too well. 

RUTHVEN. 

Then give it credit for an honest purpose. 
Nay, loose me, for the King expects me now. 

[Darnley calls without " Lord Ruthven." 
He waits ! Let go your hold ! I must not stay — 
Nay — though it break my heart, I must break from thee. 

[breaks from her, and exit. 

CATHERINE. 

"What shall I do ? I 'U to the Queen at once— 

If I can yet persuade her part from Rizzio, 

They, may be saved ; if not, destruction waits 'em ! [exit. 



SCENE II. 

A Gallery in the Palace. 

Enter Queen, followed hy Rizzio, as importuning Jier. Ladies 

remain 'near the door. 

queen. 
Rizzio, I tell thee, no ! I '11 stake my throne 
Upon this issue. Ere he shall prevail 
Against me, kingdom, life, and all shall go. 

RIZZIO. 

'Tis terrible ! If ruin came alone, 

I could defy ; but to pull thee down too ! 

QUEEN. 

If you go now, they '11 say 'twas guilty fear — 
The flight of conscious crime. I '11 have my will 
Obeyed, and not the King's ; my pride demands it. 



.scKNE 11.] MARY STUART. (u> 

Therefore, no more of that. — lint, tell me, Rizzio, 
How is 't that slander has the power to blast 
The fairest fame, and virtue none to save it i 

nizzio. 
Alas ! 'twas so ordained. A word, a look 
Needs nothing but a foul interpreter 
To turn its simple language into shame. 
And what ean virtue do ? 'Tis on the rose 
The canker feeds ; 'tis in the blossom's core 
The ugly worm carouses. — Such is slander ! 

QUEEN. 

( )h, Rizzio ! 'tis a fearful thing to look 

Upon the naked .skeleton of life ; 

'Tis worse than that of death for all its glare. 

Enter Catherine, 
catiiehine. 
Where is the Queen ? Let me but sec the Queen. 

auEEN. 
J low ! Lady Catherine ! 

CATIJEUINE. 

^Ladam ! I am come 

To warn you. Ha! the Signor, too ! [^SItuh/ T{\7.'A\o. 

Foririve 
My boldness — 'tis no time to stand on forms 
AVhen vengeance is abroad. 

QUEEN. 

Vengeance ! 

CATninUNE. 

Oil! .>Ladam! 

I fear the worst! mv father and tin- Kin^r. 

QUEEN. 

I know tlnir hate, but is a Queen to fear it ? 

I 



GO' MARY STUART. [act hi. 

CATHERINE. 

Tis not their hate I 'cl have you fear, but error 
That ruins more than hate. Suspicion has - 
Possessed them with strange fancies : and what end 
May come of it no tongue can tell ! O, Signor ! 
Help me to plead this pause, for you are e'en 
Tlie mark of their suspicion: — ^"tis most true— 
Then let me warn you, as my purpose was, 
To part for ever. 

RIZZIO. 

Ha ! For ever, say you ? 

By Heaven, I knew not till I had heard it from 
Another's mouth like a death doom announced, 
How hard it was to part ! 

CATHERINE. 

Ah ! j\Iadam, hear me — You may never hear, 
Nor see me more. By nature weak, I feel 
My little strength outworn. If, as they say, 

[_leans on one of the ladies. 

'Tis sometimes giv'n the dying to foresee ; 

There is a horror in th' obscure of time 

Dependent on this hour's decision ! Part ! 

I speak it from the threshold of the tomb — 

Waste not the time in words, or thoughts— but part ! [^Kvit. 

As Catherine ^oes off, shouts and sounds of tumult are heard at a 

distance. 

QUEEN. 

What dreadful sounds are these ? 

RIZZIO. 

The whole day long 
An angry spirit has displayed itself 
Among the ])opulace, and now it seems 
To rush with louder fury through the air ? 



MKNKii.] -MAliV i>TLAlM'. 67 

UUEEN. 

What is the cause ? 

UIZZIO. 

Their hate of foreigners, 

Hut most of me. I am the cause, and, yet 

1 have not strength to tear myself away, 

And seek oblivion in the death of exile. 

Hark! Tlicre again ! The sound grows louder stiliV 

Is 't hope that 's coming to an end ? 

QUEEN. 

\o, no; 

Hope has no end, but, even when life is sped, 
Leaps on the shadow of another world 

And sweeps through all eternity. \_Entcr Celine 

How now? 

CELINE. 

i'My, Madam ! Save yourself ! A mob is at 
The gate, demanding vengeance upon tho^ 
Who caused your Majesty to sign the league 
Of Bayonne. 

RIZZIO. 

Traitors ! Tyrants ! ^fadam, give 

.My sword but leave to make this cause its own. 

QUEEN. 

No, Sir ; no foreign swords ; 'tis not the way 
fo quiet Scotsmen. But, if outrage shouM 
Approach us in our palace, you shall guanl 
<jur person and our life. 

KlZZIi). 

I take the charge ; 

>rnre proud of it than fields where glory grows 

But here 's another messenger ! What news ? 



68 MARY STUART. [act iir. 

Enter Garcia. 

GARCIA. 

The tumult 's at its height, and every moment 
'Tis feared the troops must fire to save the palace. 

QUEEN. 

Let all things else be tried first. Hold ! I '11 go 
And shew myself. 

RIZZIO. 

Stay, Madam, — Think upon 
The risk you run. 

QUEEN. 

This is no time for thought ; 

And, as for risk, the way to 'scape 's to meet it. 

[JExit,follov:cd hy Celine. 

RIZZIO. 

By thee I take my stand, upon the line 

That life must pay to pass, — my post is there ; 

And in my heart I 've that will make me fatal. \_Exit. 



end OE ACT iJI. 



>. KNE J.] MARY STlAirr. (IJ) 



ACT IV. 

SCENE I. 

An Apartment in the Palace. 
Enter Countess of Augyle and Celine. 

ARGYLE. 

I dare not look again upon the crowd : 
Their savage yells, their frightful faces, and 
Their rage, appal my soul — "NMiere is the Queen ? 

CELINE. 

I know not. Lady ; for the multitude 
NVithin the palace crainm'd the avenues, 
And, in their eagerness to aid the Queen, 
>^oon severed her from her attendants. 

ARGYLE. 

Twaa so 1 lost her too. Hut is there no oiw 
( 'an tell us of her fate ? 

CELINE. 

Here comes the Siinior : — 

1 le knows, if any know, where we shall fiu<l 

Our Royal Mistress. 

Enter Rizzio. 

RIZZIO. 

'Twas but now I left 

Tlie Queen, to leani some tidings uf the fr.iy, 
Which happily is ended, but I know not, 
Where, in my absence, she withdrew, 



70 MARY STUART. [act iv. 

AROYLE. 

Then, is the danger past ? 

RIZZIO. 

You hear the shouts no more. 

ARGYLE. 

No; all is silent ;~Was't the Queen controul'd 
The riot ? or lior friends ? 

RIZZIO. 

Neither. Before 

She reach'd the balcony, Ruthven was up, 

And with a bold harangue outbade the storm. 

CELINE. 

Thank Heav'n for this good news ! 

ARGYLE. 

Amen. It may be 

She 's in the chamber now : — let 's seek her there, 

And be the Messengers of Peace to cheer her. 

\_Exeunt Argyle and Celine. 

RIZZIO. 

All 's over now with me : yes — I must fly 

From hence to save the Queen ; this tumult proves it. 

" But how will foul-mouthed Rumour scan the act; 

" And what will future story say of it ?" 

Tvvas but the other day I met a Beldam, 

AV'ho fix'd her time-defying eyes upon me. 

And seemed to read my features by the light 

< )f some strange faculty. I asked her what 

She saw, and she said — Blood ; then, pointing to 

The Palace-gate, she charg'd me in the names 

( )f Love and Loyalty to go no more. 

1 started at one word — the word was Love, 

And turning back a few bright leaves of time 



1 



sf''^^'^ '•] y\.\nY STUART. 

I read it there, even as the iJeKlam told me, 

And saw my gxiilt revcal'd. " But was it gxiilt ? 

" Is madness guilt ? Is love that asks for nouj^ht 

" Hut pity, guilt ? If s*>, 'tis well revenged, 

'' And need not suffer more."— How, now, who 's there ? 

Enter Garcia. 

OARCIA. 

A Friend. 

. RIZZIO, 

ila, (rarcia ! 

GARCIA. 

E'en the same, thouirh chano-ed 

In fortune, and confounded by th' events 

Around me ;— Have you thought, what s to be done ? 

RIZ2I0. 

We must away from Scotland. 

GARCIA. 

So, 'tis best. 

The Bayonne League has raised all hands against us ; 

And now another whisper goes abroad : 

They say that Kuthvcn's daughter pines to death. 

RIZZIO. 

Indeed ! 

GARCIA. 

Tis so reported. 

RIZZIO. 

<io ; bid our friends prepare. 

G.\K( lA. 

They wait, concealed, below. 

RIZZIO. 

I 11 come to you, 

\Vhen I have bade the Queen n last farewell. 



71 



72 :\rARY STUART. [act iv. 

GARCIA. 

Nay, come at once. — The sight of her will lead 
Your captive senses from the path : beware. 

RIZZIO. 

'Tis now too late j-rr-shc 's here : — I prithee leave me. 

\_E.cit Garcia. 
How like what we believe of angels, is 
AVliat we behold of her ! 

Enter Queen. 

QUEEN. 

Rizzio, well met : 

You 've come to wisli me joy the tumult's o'er. 

Is it not so ? 

RIZZIO. 

From my full heart I wish it. 

QUEEN. 

But tell me how did Ruthven speak ? — You heard him. 

RIZZIO. 

Like one inspired. The spirit of rebuke 

Swept thunder from his lips ; nay, triumph'd o'er 

The rheums, that bent his frame ; — as if to shew 

What mind can do with matter, and the fire 

Of genius with the shell in which it burns : — 

Itut I have other news to mix with it, 

That will not sound so well : the Lady Catherine 

QUEEN. 

Ah ! what of her ? 

RIZZIO. 

'Tis feared her death draws nigh. 

QUEEN. 

There is an envious malice in the stars. 

That will not let me smile, but I must weep for 't. 



SCENE I.] MARY STr ART. 7-'> 

RIZZIO. 

( ) ' may those tears he dried hy haj^pier hands 
Than hers or mine, for we must hoth away ; 
I 've come to take my h^ave. 

QUEEN. 

Tliat 's sudden too : 

Must all I love, then, leave me ? 

\i\7.7AC\. V 

On my knees 

I hless thee for that word : — 'tis balm to grief, — 

Tis life to death, — 'tis transport to despair ! 

QUEEN. 

What have I said ? Oli, Rizzio ! if I spoke 

Too strongly what I felt, should you farewell — 

Be generous, be just ; forget it, and 
Let rac forget it. 

RIZZIO. 

Ah ! recall it not, 

For fear of me, or what my hopes may claim. 
If I could cherish even a wish that wrong'd you. 
These hands should tear this body from this soul. 
As worthless of its human covering ! 

QCKEN. 

Enough : I do believe, and pity thee ; 

But yonder comes Argylo : — Leave me at once. 

RIZZTO. 

So soon ? 

QUEEN. 

'Tis short in act, but in remembrance 

'Twill last for ever : — yet, there 's something else 

I would have said. 

RIZZIO. 

I'll stay till you recall it. 

K 



74 MARY STUART. [act iv. 

QUEEN, 

No, no ! 'tis fitting you sliould leave me now ; 
But come again to-niglit ; and yet a voice 
Of terror seems to echo back my words, 
As if they were forbidden. 

Rizzro. 
Gracious Queen, let not your fears impede the only glimpse 
That I shall ever catch of happiness, — ■ 
You said, to-night ! 

QUEEN. 

Once more, and that the last, — 

To-night I '11 see thee. \_Exit. 

RIZZIO. 

Yes, though death himself 

Stood at the door, I 'd brave his worst to enter. {^Exit. 



SCENE II. 

An Apartment in Ruth yen's House. 

Enter Morton, and other Conspirators. 

MORTON. 

The mob went further than 'twas our intent 

They should have gone ; but Ruthven soon recall'd them, 

And saved appearances. 

DOUGLAS. 

'Twas well-timed vigour : — But what 's the gain. 
If Rizzio still must lord it 
O'er King and Nobles ? — 

MORTON. 

Nay, liave patience, George : 
We 'vc met to fix his fate. 



SCENE II.] MAkV 6TUAKT. 7"> 

DOUGLAS. 

Wlierc is tho Kiiijj? 
Where 's> Kutliven ? 

MORTON. 

Still, I say, have patience, man. 

Itutliven, you know, besides his malady, 

Is troubled for his child ; and though he puts 

A stem face on his grief, it may be seen through. / • 

To-day he bit his lips, not knowing what 

lie did, till blood ran from them, and at times 

Vou '11 hear a smother'd groan, stopping half-way, 

.Vs if it met some thought of pride, that strove 

In vain to choke it. 

MORTON. 

Said you not, he promised, 
In case of Rizzio's death, to bind the King 
To our support by something stronger than 
His own capricious will ? 

MORTON. 

1 lo '11 keep his promise too. 

liut see, they come together. Welcome to 

Vour ^lajesty ; and Ruthvcn, welcome home. 

Enter Darnley aiul Kutuven. 

DARN LEY. 

\ow, friends, you see what Scotland's court is come to, 
And Scotland's King and people ! Foreigners 
Sit in high places : nay, insult us with 
Impunity, and mock the power they fear not. 

DOUGLAS. 

And that Italian dug, the worst amongst em, 
Usurps the very throne. 



76 .MARY STUART. [act iv. 

DARNLEY. 

Our business is, 

To settle here, what vengeance we shall take. 

LINDSAY. 

Could we uot still contrive to banish him ? 

RUTHVEN. 

Ay — banish him. '^Sneerhiglt/ . 

LINDSAY. 

AVe've ships enough. 

MORTON. 

And goodly fortresses : 

I 've great faith in the virtue of stone walls. 

CHALMERS. 

My soul 's so eager to be rid of him, 

And with him all his crew, that either course 

AVill please me well, if it be promptly taken. 

DOUGLAS. 

What says Lord Ruthven ? 

RUTIIVEN. 

That my head is pained. 

MORTON. 

His heart more likely ; 'tis the thought of his 
Poor child, that sinks him. 

DOUGLAS. 

Is 't your old complaint ? 

RUTHVEN. 

Not so — but there are counsels sicken me 

As much as that, or more. I hate half measures, — 

I hate to sec a spider spin his entrails 

To catch a fly. Tliere was a time when men 

Looked to their own good swords to rid them of 

Their enemies : — It worked well, and saved trouble — 

r»iil now, simplicity is out of fashion, 

And crookedness the rage. 



SCENE II.] 31AJ{Y srrART. 77 

DARNLEV. 

Ruthven, my friend, 

\ou f^vo the best advice. Death — Death alone. 

And the dark wrapper of eternal niirht, 

Can lay his evil spirit low enough. 

LINDSAY. 

If 'tis your Majesty's desire, and Kutliven's. 

DARNLEY. '' 

Tis nune as well. I 'm for the lono; remove. 

urxnvEN. 
What is 't we seek to rid ns of ? A pair 
( )f hands, and other limbs, endued with motion ? 
If so, let them be tied. But no — 'tis mind, — 
The subtile power, that, with invisible organs 
Acting upon the strange events of time, 
•Makes all things possible : — to conquer that, 
We must extinguish it. 

LINDSAY. 

Then be it so. 
Arc we agreed ? 

All— all. 



.AIORTON. 



Conspirators. 



RUTUVEN. 

Naught else remains 

But that wc set to work like nun prei)arcd 

For the world's judgment. We shall have the (^ueen — 

The Queen and her revenge to cope withal. 

DAUNLEY. 

But 1 am with you : 1 am one of you. 
My sanction 's your support. 

JiirilVEN. 
< In that we build, bir. 



78 MARY STUART. [act iv. 

Here is a paper, drawn up in the sense 

l^Presents a paper to Darnley. 

Of such a declaration. Look : it states, 
That you approve the death of David Rizzio : 
No more : — sign -that, and Rizzio's race is run. 
You start, Sir ; what 's the matter ? 

DARNLEY. 

Would you bind me 

By such a fastening as was meant to hold 

The slippery knave to his engagements ? Would you 

Deal with a King, as with a trickster ? 

RUTHVEN. 

Sir, 

Our friends are here to answer for themselves. 

My mind 's made up for the security. 

[Flings the paper on the table. 

DOUGLAS. 



And so is mine. 

And ours. 

You hear them. Sir ! 



All 



RUTHVEN. 



DARNLEY. 

Yet give me leave — I 'd speak a word with you 

Alone. \jo Ruthven. 

RUTHVEN. 

At your good pleasure. Sir. Pray, leave us, friends ; 
Your cause is safe with me. I '11 not be fool'd. 

\\A$ide to Conspirators as they <jo out. 

DARNLEY. 

Shut close the iloor, and let me have your patience. 
Oh, Rutliven ! you have cut me to the soul. 



SCENE II.] MARY STUART. 79 

Bonds, as the word denotes, are shameful ties : 
Thev bind bv force and fear ; and ho who sioms one. 
Confesses to the base necessity. 

RUTH VEX. 

I cannot see tliis nice distinction, Sir, — 

An oath 's a bond, — a promise is a bond, — ' 

A simple aye, or any dumb denotement — 

Jove's was a nod — are bonds : the writins downi 

Is the preserving process, that defends, 

And not degrades it. 

DARNLEY 

Ah ! dost doubt me, then ? 

RUTHVEN. 

I love plain language, and am nothing loath 
To answer to straight-forward questioning 
In its own spirit. I do doubt you, Sir. 

DARNLEY, 

What right have you to doubt a sovereign's word ? 

RUTHVEN. 

I have a right to doubt an angel's word, 

AVhen cliaracter 's at stake. Sir, we 're all men, — 

Tlie palace and the cottage mark our place. 

But alter not our nature. Minds will change ; 

And circumstance, occasion's common drudge, 

Assails the strongest of us. If the deed 

Were done — I mean, the deed that takes off Rizzio, 

And you, from any cause, disclaimed your share in 't — 

^^'^lat would become of us, your instruments ? 

Tlie brand of an appalling infamy — 

The name of murderer — if not the fate — 

(And tlio name's worse) would mark the world's opinion. 



80 MARY STUART. [act iv. 

DARNLEY. 

But if his punishment be due to justice, 
AVliat signifies the world — or what it says ? 

RUTHVEN. 

J 

It signifies the world — that 's every thing — 
If I must spurn o])inion, shew me to 
A cell where I can hide, and slap the grating 
In the world's face : — But to defy the world 
And live in 't is impossible ! 

DARNLEY. 

Will not 

An oath sufiice for your secuiity ? — 

RUTHVEN. 

Look up into the region of the air ! 

'Tis almost made of broken promises, 

Of words and oaths ! — Yet where 's the trace to tell 

AVho made and broke them ? Why, compar'd with this — 

And this is the security you 'd give me ! — 

The woimdcd bark is an eternal record : — 

Tlicre 's more endurance in the imprinted sand, 

AVTiile waiting for the wave : — Sign, and be done. 

DARNLEY. 

I '11 swear, but cannot sign. 

RUTHVEN. 

Good bye to you ! 

DARNLEY. 

Hold, Rutlivcn ! — AVoidd you leave me ? 

RUTHVEN. 

Rather than 

Be made a cat's-paw, Sir, I 'd leave the world 

To kittens and their tricks. The Queen may hold 

ITor rovols now, and sit up all night long, 



SCENE II.] MARY STUART. T.l 

With dance, and music, and the flattery 
Of fools, to keep her wakeful. 

DARNLEV. 

You distract me ! — 

Stay — where 's the paper ? ' 

RUinVEX. 

There, before you, Sir. [_Pointing to the tabic. 

Remember, when you sign, that Rizzio dies — 

The Queen submits— the House of Douglas reigns — 

These are the issues of that simple act, 

^Vliich, tracing on the paper but a name, 

Gives in return a kinfjdom and revenge. 

Ila ! do you pause ? 

[[Darnley hesitates, but at length snatches up the pen., 
awi signs. 

DARNLEY. 

Let mo — 'tis done, and now 
I 'm in your power. 

RUXnVEN. 

Nay, nay, you're flurried, Sir, (taking the ]Mij)€r) 
Compose yourself. 

DARNLEY. 

Yet give mc back the scroll : — 

If after all he 's innocent,— or if 

RDTHVEN. 

Why look you now, what weakness you betray ! 
One moment raving ! and the next repenting ! 
By Heaven ! there's more soul in a lighted faggot 
Than such a man ! 

DARNLKV. 

Ah, now indeed I feel 
I 'lu in your power. 



02 MARY STUART. [act iv. 

RUTHVEN. 

'Tis better so, than at 

The mercy of your own discretion. 

Yet, be a man ; take courage in the thought. 

That Rizzio 's knell is toll'd. 

DARNLEY. 

When shall he die ? 

RUXnVEN. 

Before another morrow. See, the shades 

Of evening 'gin to draw their misty hoods 

Around them, and the mountains frown like fate ; 

'Twill be an awful night, a busy night, 

A bloody night — but Scotland will be free. 

How now ! who knocks ? Whate'er thou art, come forth. 

Seek you the King ? 

Enter IMorton, mid other Conspirators. 

MORTON. 

Ruthven, ' tis you we seek. 
Your daughter 

RUTHVEN. 

What of her ? my daughter ? quick. 

MORTON. 

Controul yoiirself, my friend : be Ruthven still : 
Her life is ebbing fast ; and nothing would 
Content her, till her maidens brought her here, 
To beg your parting blessing, ere she die. 

RUTHVEN. 

There are some hearts that break : 'tis happy for them. 

MORTON. 

\_To the other Conspirators. 
Let 's leave them to their melancholy meeting. 

[_Exeunt Conspirators. 



SCENE II.] MARY STUART. H\i 

[_As the Conspirators go out, Catrrrine Is home in. 
My child, what 's this I hear ? Thoy talk of death — 
But 'tis their tivlk. Ah ine ! you look it too ! — 
Yet looks deceive us oft ; and yours will mend — 
Smile oil me, Kate ; — but smile. 

CATnERINE. 

Are we alone ? 

RUTH YEN. 

Away from all the wurlil. 

CATHERINE. 

Tlien give me your 
Last blcssinjr, father. 

RUTHVEN. 

Not, ! not the last ! 
I 'U bless you, as I bless you every night. 
To do so when the moruing; wakes acaiu. 
But not to seal the parting, that 's eternal. 

CATnERINE. 

The mom will wake again, but not to me : 
Yet, ere I die, let me entreat one favour. 

RUTHVEN. 

Oh Kate, my very soul 's at your command, 
Ask what you will that 's not impossible, 
And live, and take it. 

CATHERINE. 

Then, my father, shun, 

Forego the crime, for which you 're leagued with monsters, 

Made out of men. 

RUTHVEN. 

AVhat mean'st thou ? 

CATHERINE. 

Look — this paper (sliewinj a paper), 
Knowcst thou this paper ? 



{}4 MARY STUART. [act iv. 

BUTHVEN. 

'Tis a letter from 
The Earl of ^lorton. 

CAXnERINE. 

Plannino- Rizzio's death. 

RUTHVEN, 

Give it me back. Curse on the luckless chance, 
That lost it from my keeping ! 

CATHERINE. 

Rather bless it 

As I do, if it guide your child to save you ; 

For 'tis salvation in a stronger sense 

To rescue and prevent a man from murdering, 

E'en than from being murdered. 

RUTHVEN. 

'Tis not murder. 

CATHERINE. 

Not murder ! What ! to kill the innocent ! 

RUTHVEN. 

They arc not innocent. 

CATHERINE. 

They arc ! they arc ! 

But e'en if not, still what have you to do 

"With Heaven's eternal functions ? ! this work 

Of retribution in a human hand ! 

'Tis havock and not justice — help ! I faint. 

RUTHVEN. (Snatching her in his arms.) 
Look u]), my child ! my Kate ! 'tis granted, all, 
Rlzzio 's safe. — The Queen is pure— the world 
Jlay revel, till it rot, ere I complain, 
So thou 'It but give me back the life I live in 
More than my own. 



SCENE 11] MARY STUART. 85 

CATHERTXE. 

I cannot : my strenr^h i:uU — 

My heart is stopped — Oli Father ! \^dies. 

RUTH VEX. 

Speak again ! 

She 's dead ! — is death so short a ceremony ? — 
'Tis but one pang — one moment's deeper faint — 
And nothing more. Kate ! do you hear me, Kate ? 
Not all the air that floats 'twixt tins and Heaven, 
Can lend her one short breath ; no, not so much 
As would make up a sigh to answer me. 
Ila! Morton! 

Enter Morton. 

MORTON. 

Come, my friend, this is no place 
For you to linger in. You must part. 

RUT 11 YEN. 

I know it. 

Tliere 's one was here before you, who has ])arted us. 

And far enough. 

MORTON. 

Nay, you must go from hence. 

Gaze not upon the dead : 'twill but distract you. 

RDTHVEN. 

I had a dream last night, that told me all. 

MORTON. 

Dismiss, forget it now — his mind 's unsettled. 

RUTllVEN. 

JMethought I saw the lonely power of death, 

With his pale crown, sitting upon a Tlironc 

Of ruin ; — Though he had more subjects than 

The living world contains, they were to him 

As nothing — for his attributes were nothing; 

And his strange life — the bfe of death — was nothing. 



86 MARY STUART. [act iv. 

Mcth ought I saw the lonely Potentate, 

Upon his breathless bosom lay his hand, 

And then a thrill ran through my frame, which told nic 

I had passed under his dominion. 

MORTON. 

It shakes your soul too much to think of it. 

RTTTHVEN. 

Next came the horrid chill of night and darkness, 

That, like an ugly monster, swallowed up 

The shape of things. Motion was at an end, 

And form — The winds were hushed, the sea was mute, 

The sky was voiceless, and the Earth itself 

As silent as the moon. I strove to shake 

The stupor from my senses, and at length 

Burst the fell bondage of tlie grisly King, 

I woke, but O, to what reality ? 

Let me not think on 't. No — she 's gone, and fate 

Has done its worst ! — There 's comfort in that worst. 

Proud scorn and fierce defiance arc the passions 

It sends to fight with lamentation, — 

There is no terror now for me in things 

]\Iost terrible ! — I love to see the storm 

Shake from its fiery lap the seeds of death 

Upon the wind, and nish from Heaven to Hell ! — 

I love to see the high wave dash the orbs 

Of light, and feel the earth shake under me, 

When ruin pelts it with the driving blast, 

And plays the devil in the hurricane ! 

MORTON. 

0, come, my friend ! 

RUTHVEN. 

Lead where you will — I care not. [_E:veimt. 

END OF ACT IV. 



siENF. I.] MARY STUART. «7 



ACT V. 

SCENE I. 

A)) Apartment in the Palace. 
Enter Queen, and Countess of Argyle. 

QUEEN. 

Lord Ruthvcn, to request an interview ! 
What can liis purpose be ? 

ARGYLE. 

Mayhap to speak 
Of his bereavement. 

QUEEN. 

No ; he 's not a man 

To care for sympathy : more like he comes 

To bend my resolution to the King : 

But he may spare his pains, if that 's his mission — 

Go, Countess — wait without — he 's coming liitlicr. 

[Argyle exit, «^ Rutiiven enters. 
My Lord of Ruthven, I am sorry for 
Your trouble, which is shared by many here. 

RUTHVEN. 

Thanks to your ]\Iajcsty — 'Twas hard upon me, 

For I had nature's passport to precedence ; 

But death 's no courtier. To the purpose, though — 

Before my daughter died, she charged me with 

A last request, that in its spirit led 

To this our meetins: — I would heal the breach 

That severs, as it were, the throne in two ; 



88 MARY STUART. [act v. 

'Tis like the cleaving of the head of empire, 
Destructive in its certain consequence. 

QUEEN. 

Whate'er the c^onsequence, the King's to blame. 

RUTHVEN. 

No, Madam, Rizzio is to blame— the King 
Would banish him : your Majesty protects him ; 
And, for a slave — a wretch not worth a thought — 
This mighty State is threatened with destruction, 
If neither will give way. 

QUEEN. 

And if one should, 

You think it ought to be the Queen ? — My Lord, 

In that our politics agree not. 

RUTHVEN. 

Yet, 

There 's no disgrace in drawing back a stej) 

That rashly was put forward. 

QUEEN. 

Rashly, Sir ! 

RUTHVEN. 

Your pardon, Madam ; if I may not speak 
Out plainly, I had bettor hold my tongue. 
Was it not rash to take the part of any man 
Against the King, your husband ? 

QUEEN. 

Darest thou then, 

Presume, as he presumed, to talk of guilt ? 

RUTHVEN. 

No, Madam; not of guilt in its full meaning : 

But there 's a sort of miilt in innocence. 

And weakness is its name. You are bewitched 



SCENE I.] MAKV STUAkT. 

By tliis curst sorcerer. AVhat is tliis Ri/jcio, 

That you should throw before him as a shieUl, 

Your reputation ? (^r, is reputation 

So litrht a thing ? If 'tis not virtue's self, 

It is the outward form we know it by, 

And we should love it dearer than our own. 

For virtue's sake —Madam, the world condemns vou. 

QUEEN. 

You and your friends ? 

nUTUVEN. 

I and the rest of men. 

We say that Rizzio is an evil spirit 

Haunting your matron bosom. Scotland hates him : 

Your husband hates him : you, if you had eyes 

To see what deep affliction springs from weakness 

Would shun him, banish him, be rid of him ; 

And if you could not hate himself, would hate 

His sight, like infamy : there 's ruin in 't, 

And scandal, and remorse, and scorn, and shame. 

I'pon my knees I pray your Majesty, 

Spurn not my words, because the words are mine ; 

But lay them to your heart ; and let them speak 

To the inward monitor. 

QUEEN. 

Am I thus fallen 

To be rebuked and lectured like a criminal ? 
But I '11 not weep— n.. — are you not ashamed, 
Old man, to take the part of cruelty 
Against the unoffending and the weak ? 
Rizzio has done no wrong, and therefore he 
Shall suffer none. 

RUTDVEN. 

Then I 've no more to say. My busint-ss was 
But to acquit my conscience and mv heart 

M 



Hy 



90 MARY STUART. [act v. 

To her who is no more. — Madam, you 've sealed 
The fate of Rizzio. 

QUEEN. 

Ila ! What say'st thou ? Dare 

To raise a finger in the way of hann 

'Gainst him or any whom the Queen protects, 

And you shall find that vengeance does not sleep, 

But for refreshment. Tell the King of this. 

And try your strength combined to alter it. \_Exit. 

RUTHVEN. 

We '11 take you at your word, imperious woman, 
And sooner than you dream of. 

Enter Darnley and Conspirators. 
Welcome, Sir ! 

And you, my friends — welcome to each. You 're come 
In time to find me all your own. The Queen 
Is bent on Rizzio's stay. 

DARNLEY. 

I told you so — 

You 've done with scruples now, I hope ? 

RUTHVEN. 

For ever. 

DARNLEY. 

Then let us settle on the final plan. 

Morton has just relieved the guard, whose cliarge 

Is filled by others in our confidence. 

MORTON. 

But is it certain Rizzio sups to-night 
In the Queen's closet with the Queen ? 

DOUGLAS. 

For certain 

He does intend it. 



scENK I.] MARY STUART. 91 

CHALMERS. 

Shall we seize him as 

He passes through the court-yard, and dispatch him ? 

DAUNLEY. 

Not so ; the Queen, who shared his crime, should sharo 
His punishment. Let's watch him to her closet, 
And there, before her face, iuHict the blow. 

DOUGLAS. 

And let there be no shrinkinjj when we come to't. 
If he should 'scape, my mother in her grave 
Would give a sullen groan. The villain dared 



RUTHVEN. 

Hush ! the man 's dead. 

DOUGLAS. 

Dead! 

RUTHVEN. 

Ay, in destiny 

Already dead, if wo 're all men, or any of us. 

MORTON. 

Is every thing prepared ? 

DOUGLAS. 

Ripe for the blow. 

MORTON. 

George Douglas, be 't your task to keep an eye 
Upon his movements, till he 's safely lodged, 
.\.nd then to brins us word. 

DOUGLAS. 

Depend upon 't 

I '11 not lose sight of him. 

DARNLEY. 

Ruthven, you droop — 

Nay, rouse yourself I — Remember, you re our leader. 



i 



02 3IARY STUART. [act v. 

RUTllVEN. 

I do. 

DARNLEY. 

But are you sure that your late loss 

Ilath left no drop of weakness after it, 

Which, at the moment, may unnerve your hand ? 

RUTHVEN. 

You 've heard the story of a lioness 

That saw her young whelp by the hunter speared 

One glorious day of chase. Furious she sprang 

From the thick jungle at the multitude, 

And made more havoc in their ranks than wildfire 

In hrambles, till she fell. Nor quailed she then ; 

For when she fell, 'twas at the bleeding side 

Of her own offspring stretched in death. Close, close 

As mothers lie, she lay to 't; stroked the skin 

By hunters rudely torn, and with a lick. 

Which was her kiss, pierced by a hundred wounds. 

Amidst a thousand shouts, she died lamenting 

The baby brute that from her fearful breast 

Drew milk and tenderness. Such as that mother. 

Am I a father. Such the grief I feel. 

Come, follow me, and you shall own its greatness. 

[Kveunt all but Douglas and Chalmers. 

DOUGLAS. 

Stay, Chalmers ; — a man likes to have a comrade 
Upon the watch. 

CHALMERS. 

"SVc 've watched together, George, i 
Before to-night, but not in such a camp. 
Well; Scotland must be saved. 

DOUGLAS. 

l><iok ! i.s that he ? 



SCENE I.] MAUY STUAKT. 93 

CHALMERS. 

'Tis he and his friend Garcia. 

UOIGLAS. 

Tliis way ! — this way ! 

They must not find us here at such an hour. 

\_They Conceal t/ietfuielrcg. 

Enter Kizzio, uml Garcia. 

GARCIA. 

I knew how *t would be wlien you met the <^ueen ; — 

Hut is *t not rash to venture now ajrain. 

The ship is ready, and your friends are waiting — 

All are embarked : they look impatient for 

^'our coming, to set sail. 

UIZZIO. 

What — should Ibreak 
My promise ? 

GARCIA. 

Should you risk your life, and those 
Of others, who depend on you ? 

RIZZIO. 

Xay, nay ; 

We 're not in Turkey, amongst infidels, 

" That we should dread tlie bow-string." 

GARCIA. 

But we 're in 

A land of enemies; and when a Christian 

Turns Devil, " he 's a match for any Mussulman." 

RIZZIO. 

Out, out ! you let your terrors chill your manliood. 
I have engaged to play a rccjuiein 
For the departed soul of that sweet maid, 
Whose love you charge me with. My harp is in 
The closet now, and only wait> my hand. 



94 MARY STUART. [act v. 

GARCIA. 

\\'cll, if you must, I wish you well — that 's all ; 

For, more than wish it is impossible. [_JE/xif. 

RIZZIO. 

How awful is this midnight sleep and silence ! 

The lamps burn dimly in the corridor ; 

The wind sighs mournful through the empty rooms 

Of state, like wisdom whispering vanity, 

And all the flaunting plumes that waved aloft, 

Like sea foam, on the billows of the main. 

Are, with the wearers, vanished. So it is 

With life ; yet, let me while I may, enjoy — 

Yonder 's the door that in its keeping holds 

The richest treasure of the bounteous earth ; — 

I '11 bless my senses with the sight of it. {_Exit. 

Re-^nter Douglas. 
DOUGLAS {speakmg to Chalmers), 
Go, Chalmers ; follow Garcia ; seize him, lest 
He cause some interruption to our course. 

Ha, the door opens ! Rizzio enters, and [Chalmers exit. 

It closes after him ! He 's safe within ! 
I 've tracked him into covert — now for the hunters ! \_Exit. 



SCENE II. 

The Queen's Closet. 

The Queen and Countess of Argyle seated at table. Rizzio 

at the harp. 

RIZZIO sings. 
When the dead sleep 
'Tis weakness to weep ; 



scENi: II.] y\\]{\ STrAHT. 95 

Their sorrows are past. 

And the hope that will last, 

Is that which looks over the Earth's narrow sphere. 

For the summer is there, but the winter is here. 

" When the ilead rise 

"• From earth to the skies, 

'• Subdued is the nitjht 

" By the angel of light, 

" And banished for ever 's mortality's tear, 

" For the summer is there, but the winter is here." 

QUEEN. 

Thanks, Rizzio, for this sweetly plaintive strain. 
AVhich haply we shall never hear beyond 
The echoes of this night. AVhy do you rise ? 

RIZZIO. 

O ! ^fadam, I am sick with melancholy. 

Dark thoughts of death, and parting, worse than death, 

Fall on my heart, like shadows on a tomb. 

" 1 11 gaze upon this outward scene awhile, 

" And think myself a spirit in yon sky, \_Going to the icindow. 

" And so forget the grief that troubles me. 

" Look up, sweet Queen, and sec with what a smile 

'' The current of the night runs on to mom. 

" ^^^lat is this wondrous universe, in midst 

" Of which we seem to stand ? — What are those orbs, 

" And this surrounding sky, so richly wrought 

" "With gold, and painted with Heaven's light ? — is this 

" A frame to set so poor a picture in, 

" As man ? If so, there are, there must be, in him 

" Great seeds, that shoot above the size of time ; 

*' Immortal faculties, that grow for ever : 

" Yes, even the breaking of the day-light sheds 

" A revelation on his destiny." 



96 MARY STUART. [act v. 

ARGYLE. 

The wine cup, Signor, has a charm, they say. 

To lift up sinking hearts ; taste, taste, and try ; 

And if you 'd have a name to grace the act. 

Drink to the Queen. [^Gives a cup. 

RIZZIO. 

The Queen ! (drinks.) I feel refreshed. 
No wonder wretchedness should fly to thee, 
Thou bold artificer of unmade fortunes, 
That spurn'st the dull routine events are chained in, 
Laugh'st in the face of half-relenting truth. 
And mak'st the slave a king. 1 feel thy power, 
And thus I use the strength it girds me with. 
To kneel where every heart should pay devotion. 
And worship virtue's self in beauty's form. 

\^Kneels to the Queen. 

QUEEN, 

Nay, rise, and mock me not with praise : thy speech 
Would better suit an angel's excellence. 

RIZZIO. 

Then what art thoii, bright vision of my soul, 

That look'st as heaven were here ? Ah ! must I go 

From hence, for ever into banishment ? 

O Quoon I I 'm punished, and I well deserve it ; 

For let me now confess I have deceived 

Myself and thee : — I was the willing dupe 

Of mine own artifice. 'Twas love alone 

That, covered with the name of gratitude, 

Lurk'd in my treacherous heart. 

QUEEN. 

Why have you told 

A secret that should never see the light ? 

RIZZIO. 

Because I have not e'en the virtue to 



SCENE n.] MARY STIAUT. »7 

Conceal it. Seeing liow you pitied me, 
And, in your gracious favour, took my part, 
I saw my crime, but saw not to correct it. 
E'en now, I cannot, must not, will not leave thee, 
Though deatli and ruin be my portion here. 

QUEEN. 

Rizzio ! when too late, I sec my own 

Rash conduct too ; I 've been to blame for much 
Of this distress and error : I have acted 
Lightly, not guiltily ; but guilt and shame 
Have small beginnings both : 'tis hell's device 
To plunge it's victim into hopeless crime. 

[^1 7ioi$c outside — tl'iey all start. 
What sound was that ? 

ARfiYLE. 

It was an awful sound : 

1 'II seek to find the cause. [Exit. 

QUEEN'. 

liizzio, if auirht 

Of ill should fall on thee, for my sake, how 

Could I support it ? 

RIX/AO. 

Be not downcast. Madam. 

We 're in your palace, and your palace is 

The seat of your security, where all 

Your crowned ancestors have kept their state : 

Tlieir memories are like ethereal guards, 

And, with a charge from Heaven, they banish insult. 

QUEEN. 

Still, still, a sad foreboding shakes my soul — 
Tlie hour, the previous silence, and that sound ! 
The shudder of an earthquake seemed to follow it. 

QCouNTEss of Argyle Tnu/ies in, and throvs 
herself at the Queen's /ee^ 

N 



98 MARY STUART. [act v. 

How now, Argyle ! What means that look of fright ? 
Speak out at once — say something, or do something 
To snatch ns from our fear. 

ARGYLE. 

Madam I madam ! 

When I have breath, I '11 tell you — ^There 's some evil 
On foot within the palace. 

QUEEN. 

What ? from whom ? 

Have you seen aught that showed this horror to you ? 

ARGYLE. 

1 have ; — in th' outward porch, I saw a group 

Of m(>n, all armed : — the King, the King, was with 'em. 

RIZZIO. 

Then, 'tis my life they seek '• 

QUEEN. 

But hear her ! hear hor ! 

ARGYLE. 

Amongst the rest, was Ruthvcn, clad in steel. 

Hark ! 'twas the crash of armour. ^A crash is heard. 

QUEEN. 

No ; 'twas but 

The wind ; secure the door — bolt it. 

ARGYLE. 

'Tis fast. Q They secure the door. 

RIZZIO. 

I hear the sound of footsteps. 

QUEEN. 

Heavenly powers ! 

O Rizzio, fear not : still the Queen protects thee. 

RIZZIO. 

The sound comes still ! 



SCENE II] MAKY STrVKT. 99 

QXEEN. 

What 's to be dune ? Yon window — 

O no ; the hei<{ht 's too great. ( )h, powers of Heaven ! 

Y'e, ye alone, ean shield us — save us ! 

[^The tapestry ichich covers a secret door is raised^ 
and RuTHVEN appears in armour at the head of 
the Conspirators — except Morton. 

QUEEN. 

(shrieks.) Ah ! [_rushing daicn irifh liiz/.U) a>id Auutle. 

Pale warrior, com'st thou from the realm unknown, 

A semblance only of the man thou wast ; 

But art no longer ? or is 't life we see, 

80 like to death that we are horrified ? 

Speak to me ; — wilt not speak ? — then, Daniley, tell me 

What are these men ; why are they here in arms ? 

Are these companions for a lady's chamber, 

Or suit they with a Queen's ? 

DARNLEV. 

They better suit it 

Than one I here behold, standing behind thee. 

RUTUVEN. 

Rizzio, come forth ! 

QIEEN. 

'Tis Ruthven speaks at last. 

And murder soimds in every frightful tone. 

Ho ! there ! — Call in the jniard ! 



DARNhEV. 



The guard is here. 



100 



MARY STUAUT. [act v. 



QUEEN. 

What ! are my faithful sentinels exchanged 

For such as these, whose watch is like the wolf's, 

Not for defence, but for aggression ? 

RUTHVEN. 

Madam, 

I did not mean to speak : I came to act ; 

But as your Majesty will have it otherwise, 

I must obey the call. You see before you 

A living man, but dying as he lives ; 

A dying man, but living to perform 

An act of cold and calm severity. 

By justice self imposed. Nay, madam, frown not, 

Nor think to look me down. I have no fear ; 

Or if I had, I 've nothing now to fear for. 

Old, desolate, and childless, here I stand— 

I am not of your kind, nor of your clan. 

Nor of your world ; but dead alike to all ; — 

Yet I 've a sense of what I owe my country. 

And that hath brought me, lock'd in martial mail, 

Against whose iron ribs your words are dash'd, 

In striking at my heart. {Thunder.) Hark ! 'tis Heaven's voice 

Which says this hour must end the guilty joys 

Of Holyrood for ever. 

QUEKN. 

Darnley, are you 

A husband or a King ? — a peasant's wife 
Would not have need to ask for vengeance, if 
She suffered su(;h an insult in his presence ! 

RIZZIO. 

The Queen is innocent, and I 'm defenceless. 



SCENE 1,.] .MAItY STrART. JOI 

Look ! I 'm unarmed, and you are cased in steel : 
I 'm one, and you are many : spare me, therefore. 

RDTFIVEN. 

Kizzio, come forth !— too long have you disgraced 

Tliat place, poisoning the ear of :Majesty. 

Kizzio, come forth ! Let go the Queen's robe, caitiff. 

Thus then, with the last effort of a hand 

That once might pluck the giant from his bed, 

Or heap, like Jove, th' eternal mountains on him, 

I drag thee to thy fate. 

lAs he rmlm towards Rizzio the Queen interposes. 

QUEEN. 

Hold off ! hold off 

Thy hand from the thrice blessed life of man ! 

Strike not the great Creator in his ima^^e ' 

RrinvEx, 

There is a freezing horror in your words 

But justice must be done— away with him ! 

IFlinr;, Rizzio amotofst the Conspirators, who drag 
him off the stage— RvTHv^s following. 

QUEEN. 

Murder !_they '11 shed his blood ! his guiltless blood ' 

Will no one save him from these savages ? 

Oh Heaven ! 'tis on thy mercy that I call 

For vengeance ! O, be merciful, and kill 

These killers ' [^„,,^ yiELViLLE from folding doors. 

^ow, good Melville, is there hope ? 

MELVILLE. 

Madam — 

QUEEN. 

Speak ! speak ! is he alive or dead ? 



102 MARY STUART. [act t. 

MELVILLE. 

He's past the reach of help or injury — 

Ila ! look to the Queen ! she faints ! [_JIe rushes towards her. 

QUEEN. 

No ; no more fainting — 

Ruthven ajjain ! How 's this ? — He glares more like 

A wounded tiger than a dying man. 

[RuTHVEX totters in^ and sinks on a couch. 

RUTHVEN. 

Fetch mc a cup of wine. 

QUEEN. 

Out, blood-stained monster ! 

Nor dare to ask for auglit. Fetch him a cup 

Of fire, that he may drink as demons drink, 

For he is one. [^The Queen faints. 

RUTHVEN. 

I feel as if I lack'd 

The strength to die. Will no one help me to't? 

MELVILLE. 

Here 's wine. [^Gives him a cup. 

RUTHVEN. 

Thanks! thanks ! there's vigour in the draught. 
AVhero am I ? — AVine ! — more wiue ! How dark it is ! 
Midnight is not so dark. The stars have dropped 
Into the Nadyr, and the Zonyth thimdcrs 
Like an uplifted hell-storm o'er my head. 
Hush ! there 's a voice upon the wind. — AVho spoke ? 
Who said the heavens are wrathful at the deed ? 
AVho dared to breathe that Ruthven is a miirderer ? 
For Scotland — 'Twas for Scotland — for our country. 
Atte!<t it, powers above, wc !>truck for right — 



SCENE II.] MARY STrAKT. lUU 

Fi)r riijlit. — Tis doomsday with mankind, — 

The pillars of the skv arc tumblinjj — 

And all created nature feels the shock 

Of the main works above. Rajie on, ncc on — 

Ye dreadful sweepings of the thunder store ; 

Scatter me, bones and all, to the wind's fury. 

Still I repeat, it was a rightful blow, 

Twas for our Country ! 'Twas — 'twas for our Country ! {^dies. 



THE END. 



LONDON : 
PRtNTED BT T. BRETTEI.I., RfPF.RT STREF.T, HWMARKET. 



A 



LEGEND OF FLORENCE 



a pan. 



IN FIVE ACTS. 



BY LEIGH HUNT. 

I 



One &icp to the deatli-bcd, 

And one to the bier, 
And one to the cliarncl. 

And one — oh where? — SnKH.rv. 



LONDON : 
EDWARD MOXON, DOVER STREET. 



wncccxL. 



LONDON : 
BKAOBURY AND KVANS, I'ltlNTEIlS, WIUTEFIIUIIS. 



PRKFACK. 



As it is now the custom to publish new plays on the ilav 
of their performance, I am unable to state here what will 
have been the success or otherwise of the present, as far as 
regards the stage. But I cannot helj) taking the first 
opportimity of saving, how delightful has been the inter- 
course it has occasioned me with my new friends the per- 
formers, from the moment when tlie fair manager first held 
out to me her cordial hand, down to the last pleasant 
interchange of jest and earnest during the business of 
rehearsal. In all my life I never met with a reception, on 
all sides, so full of what is most precious to an anxious 
author, — willingness to hear, promptitude to decide, an 
absence of every species of insincerity and mystification, and, 
what has particularly touched me, a generous encouragement 
to proceed in my new efforts, even should the first have 
tried the philosophy of every party concerned, by proving 
unsuccessful. When authors are treated in this manner 
behind the curtain, and the public sec what is done to 

A 2 



vi PREFACE. 

please tliem by indefatigable attentions to every propriety 
of tlie stajje, no wonder a sense of cheerfulness and abim- 
dance is associated with the idea of Covent Garden Theatre 
in the general inind, and that Madame Vestris, night 
after night, has seen her larger house fill as the smaller 
did, in spite of those who had begun to think large 
houses impracticable, and of the hostility even of that late 
pertinacious an ti- playgoer, the bad weather. 

If I omit specifying by name every one among the repre- 
sentatives of my dramatis persojia who have shown a 
willingness to befriend me (which indeed includes the whole 
list), they will attribute it partly to a disinclination to make 
my thanks appear mechanical and a matter of course. They 
will not grudge, however, the particular acknowledgments 
I feel bound to express towards the Stage-manager, Mr. 
Bartley, for a co-operation no less judicious than warm ; and 
to Miss Ellen Tree, for entering into the character of the 
heroine with a sensibility of brain and heart which left 
me nothing to desire, except that no failure, occasioned 
by the authorship of the play, might ill reward it. 
Should I have been destined to undergo that new trial of 
old habits of endurance, it may be permitted my self- love, 
by way of consolation, not easily to forget the bright coun- 
tenance wliich I saw standing beside me, in a glow of tears 
,uk1 exaltation, at the end of one of the perusals of the 
piece, — the climax, indeed, of the like kindly sympathies 



PREFACE. vii 

from others of my genial friends behind the eiirtain. One 
of the agreeable surprises I met with upon making my first 
acquaintance with this part of the theatre (for I was never 
in a green-room before), was this freshness of imagination, 
and strong propensity to the enjoyment as well as business 
of the stage, w hieh I hud idly fancied to be not couunon to 
the profession. I had concluded, with a haste wliich the 
pleasures of my own studies should have warned nje 
against, that when the business of a scene was over, they 
retired to their green-rooms to rest from their fatigues and 
be silent, or to talk of anything else; but I found them 
occupied in nothing so certain, unless it was the general 
playfulness of their animal spirits, —the natural wine, indeed, 
which is necessary to make an actor's l»lood what it is, and 
which manifests itself in a flow of companionship equally 
liberal and decorous. Such at least I have found the 
theatrical world, as it exists under the unafi'ected ami 
generous government of Mr. and Mrs. Charles Mathews. 

A word respecting the story of my plav. — When I resided 
near Florence, some years ago, I was in the habit of going 
through a street in that city, called the " Street of Death," 
{f'ia della Morte), — a name given it fron) the circumstance 
of a l.idv's having passed througii it at night-time in her 
grave-clothes, who had been buried during a trance. 'J'he 
story, which, in its mortal particulars resembles several of 
the like sort that arc populai" in other countries, and which. 



viii PREFACE. 

indeed, are no less probable than romantic, has been 
variously told by Italian authors ; and I have taken my 
own liberties with it accordingly. But nobody, I believe, in 
Italy evet doubted the main facts. The names of the parties 
most concerned are those of real families, and handed 
down as belonging to the actual persons; and their characters 
(if my remembrance of the account given in a Florentine 
publication does not deceive me*) correspond in their 
elements with those here attempted to be drawn out. 
Among the pleasures which I have had in making the 
endeavour, (for ultimate success, or otherwise, has no 
more to do with tliose, than the uses to which a tree may 
be turned, affect it while growing,) is the melancholy one of 
thinking, that the beloved friend whom I lost in that 
country had chosen the same subject for a poem, of vvhicli 
he has left a fragment. The motto from it in my title-page 
has enabled me to see our names together once more, and 
upon an occasion which even his noble dramatic genius 
would have taken to welcome me for love's sake, if for no 
reason more worthy of the companionship. 

May I add, without appearance of presumption of another 
sort, that the versification of this play, in passages where 
the natural (juickness and freedom of dialogue seemed to 
warrant it, is of a less apparent regularity than the drama 
has been accustomed to for a long time .? I am aware, (and 

* The " Osservatorc Fiercntino." 



PREFACE. ix 

I siiy it with deepest reverence, and with a deprecation ol" 
immodesty even in thinkinj^ it necessary so to say it,) that 
the dramatist, high above all dramatists, has almost sancti- 
fied a ten-syllable regularity of structure, scarcely ever varied 
bv a syllable, though rich with every other diversity of 
modulation. But noble as the music is which he has 
accordingly left us, massy, yet easy, and never tailing bin), 
any more than his superhuman abundance of thought and 
imagery, — I dare venture to think, that hail he lived 
farther off from the times of the princely monotony of 
" MarlowVs mighty line," he would have carried still farther 
that rhythmical freedom, of icliich he was the first to set his 
own fashion, and liave anticipated, and far surpassed, the 
sprightly licence of Beaumont and Fletcher. All I can 
say in excuse for my own departure from a custom so 
ennobled, is, that it suits, as well as I can make it, the 
amount of power I possess to indulge an im])ulse which I 
hold to be proper to dramatic dialogue, as distinguished from 
that of narration. But I beg the reader to give me credit 
for rating the utmost possible success of such a tiieory no 
higher than it deserves, wlien brought into compari.son with 
that " all in all" of jiassion and imagination, of which it is 
only the least and lightest of servants. 



TO 



ARMORER DONKIN, ESQ 

OP NEWCASTLE, 

Without the aid of whose practical wisdom, in combination vNiih 
his kind heart, ihe Author mi-ht never have had health or leisure 
enough to indulge himself in an etfort of this kind, the following Tlay 
is inscribed by his 

Obliged and affectionate Servant, 

LEIGH HUNT. 

t'HFLSt-A, FpB. 0, IS 10. 



DRAMATIS I'ERSOV.t:. 



Francesco AcoLANn, a noble Florentir.e . M,-. Moore. 

Antonio Rondinell,, another .... ^/,. Anderson. 

Frtv.o Da Riva, a Poet ^^,. ^^^^^^.^ 

Cesake Co^lonna. an Officer of the Pope's Guards Mr. G. Vandenhoff. 
• Mrs. Walter Lncy. 



GiPLio, a Paffe 

Servant 



Mr. Payne. 



Cin.vRA.U-ifetoAgolanti . . . M^s. Ellen Tree. 

Misi Charles. 

Diana . . nr r, 

J*lrs. Uroughani, 

FlORDlLISA . . ]lf T 

. • Mus Lee. 



ScBSE— Florence and Us Neighbourhood. 
Tiuz—During the Pontificate of Leo the Tenth. 



A 



LEGEND OF FLORENCE 



ACT I. 
SCENE I. 

The High-road from Florence to Rome. 
Enter Da Riva ami Colonna, meeting. 

Colonna. Fulvio. immortal hoy — poet — good fellow — 
Punctual moreover, which is wonder's climax, — 
How dost ? and where hast heen these eighteen months ? 
At grass, eh ? fattening with thy Pegasus, 
Like the most holy father ! 

Da Rita. Dearest Cesare, 

'Tis you, raethinks, are the immortal lx)y. 
Growing nor fat nor thin, but still the same; 
Still the same bantering, glittering, blithe, good soul. 
Pretending to give blows, to excuse thy blessings. 

Colonna. Nay, but the poet is the youth for ever, 
Howe'er he grow ; let him feign even a bit 
Of a white top, like our old roaring boys, 

B 



2 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act i. 

j^tna and Vesuvius, with their sides of wine. 

You know, Da Riva, for those hairs of thine 

I ought to call thee father, if I could ; 

But then thine heart, and this warm hand to match, 

Will never let me think thee, somehow or other, 

A dozen years older than myself. 

Da Riva. Years older ! 

A pretty jest, ""faith, Avhen our souls were twins. 
And thou but the more light one, like an almond 
Pack'd in one shell behind a plumper. Well, 
How dost ? and how does Florio and Filippo ? 
And is the Pope really and truly come 
At last, and in his own most sacred person, 
To see and glorify his native place ? 
Or hast thou shot before him, like a i*ay 
Out of his orb? 

Colonna. Thy simile has it, 'faith : 

Here is his ray, shining upon thyself, 
As his ray should ; and the good orb meanwhile, 
Growing a little stout or so, reposes 
Some nine miles off, and will be here next week. 
Just by the time your speeches are all ready. 

Da Riva. And toilets ? 

Colonna. Ay, and your extempore odes. 

Well, well ; you see we are insolent as ever, 
All well and merry. — Not so, eh ? in Florence ? 
How is Antonio? and pray, who was he. 



scKNK I.] A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. 3 

That fellow yonder — liiere he goes — that left you 
Just as I came, and wont ofTbowinpf so, 
With such a lavish courtesy and close eye i 

Da liiva. That lavish courtesy and that close eye 
Will tell you how Antonio is. That fellow, 
As you call him, is one of tiie most respectable men 
In Florence. " Men," do I say ? one of tlie richest 
And proiKlest nobles ; of strict fame withal, 
Yet courteous ; bows to every one, pays every one 

Colonna. Oh villain ! 

Da Riva. Flatters every one ; in short. 

Is as celestial out of his own house, 

As he is devil within it. ( IVIiispering in his ear) Gincvra's 
husband. 

Colonna. The devil it is ! {Looking after him) Methinks 
he casts a blackness 
Around him as he walks, and Ijlights the vineyards. 
And all is true then, is it, which they tell me ? 
What, quite ? Has he no plea? no provocation 
From lover, or from wife ? 

Da Itiva. None that I know of, 

Except her patience and the lover's merit. 
Antonio's love, you know, is old as his, 
Has been more tried, and, I believe, is spotless. 

Colonna. Dear Ilondinelli ! — Well, but has this husband 
No taste of good in him at all ? no comer 
In his heart, for some small household grace to sneak in : 

H '2 



4 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act i. 

Da Riva. Nay, what he has of grace in him is not sneaking. 
In all, except a heart, and a black shade 
Of superstition, he is man enough ! 
Has a bold blood, large brain, and liberal hand, 
As far as the purse goes ; albeit he likes 
The going to be blown abroad with trumpets. 
Nay, I won't swear he does not love his wife, 
As well as a man of no sort of affection 
Nor any domestic tenderness, can do so. 

Colonna. A mighty attaching gentleman, 'ifaith. 
And quite uxorious. 

Da Riva. Why, thus it is. 

He highly approves her virtues, talents, beauty ; 
Thinks her the sweetest woman in all Florence, 
Partly, because she is, — partly, because 
She is his own, and glorifies his choice ; 
And therefore he does her the honour of making her 
The representative and epitome 
Of all he values, — public reputation, 
Private obedience, delighted fondness, 
Grateful return for his unamiableness, 
Love without bounds, in short, for his self-love : — 
And as she finds it difficult, poor soul. 
To pay such reasonable demands at sight, 
With the whole treasure of her heart and smiles, 
The gentleman takes pity on — himself ! 
Looks on himself as the most unresponded to 



scENK I.] A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. 5 

And unaccountahly ill-used bad temper 

In Tuscany; rages at every word 

And look she gives another ; and fills the house 

With miseries, which, because they ease himself, 

And his vile spleen, he thinks her bound to suffer; 

And then finds malice in her very suffering ! 

Colonna. And she, they tell me, suffers dangerously ? 

Da liiva. 'Tis thought she'll die of it. And yet, observe 
now : — 
Such is poor human nature, at least such 
Is poor human inhuman nature, in this man, 
That if she were to die, I verily think 
He'd weep, and sit at the receipt of pity. 
And call upon the gods, ami think he loved her ! 

Colonna. Poor, dear, damn'd tyrant ! — ;ind where goes 
he now ? 

Da Riva. To Florence, from his country-house ; betwixt 
Which place and town, what with his jealousy 
Of the swee tsoul, and love of mighty men, 
He'll lead a devil of a life this fortnififht ; 
Not knowing whether to let her share the holiday 
For fear of them, and of Antonio; 
Or whether, for worse fear, still of Antonio, 
To keep her in the shades, love''s natural haunt. 

Colonna. The town's the hiding-place. Be sure he'll take 
Some musty lodging in the thick of the town, 
To hide her in : perhaps within the sound 
Of the shows, to vex her; and let her see what plea.>ures 



6 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act i. 

She loses in not loving him. — Well, here am I, 
A feather in the cap of the fair advent 
Of his most pleasant Holiness Pope Leo, 
Come fo make holiday with my l""uscan friends, 
And lay our loving heads together, to see 
What can be done to help this gentle lady 
I'or poor Antonio's sake, and for her own. 

Da Riva. Ay, and amidst those loving heads, are lovely 
ones. 
What think you of the bright Olimpia, 
And sweet Diana, her more thoughtful friend ? — 
You recollect them ? 

Colonna. What ! the divine widows, 

That led that bevy of young married dames 
At the baths of Pisa, and whom we used to call 
Sunlight and Moonlight ? 

Da Riva. The identical stars ! 

She of the crescent has a country-house, 
Here in the neighbourhood, close by Agolanti's. 
There are they both ; and there Antonio is, 
W^aiting us two ; and thence his friends the ladies, 
Escorted by us two, will go to visit 
Their friend Ginevra ; partly, if they can, 
To bring him better news of his saint's health ; 
Partly, for other reasons which you''ll see. 

Colonna. Charming! And wherefore stand you looking 
then, 
This way and that ? 



SCENE ii] A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. 

Da Uiva. ^Vliy, tins way is our road ; 
And that way 1 was looking, to see how far 
Our friend, the foe, was on his way to town. 
I have never, you must know, been in his house ; 
And little tliought he, when he saw us here, 
AVliat unexpected introduction, eh ? 
Was waiting us. I can't help thinking, somehow, 
He'll hear of it, and come back. 

Colonna. For Heaven's sake, haste then. 
What ! loitering ! — May the husband take the hindmost ! 



SCENE II. 

A Room in the Villa Agohinti. 
Enter Giulio and Fiordilisa, meetin/j. 

Fiordilisa. Alas ! my lady is very angry, Giulio ! 

Gim/jo. Angry ? At what? 

Fiordilisa. At Signer Antonio's letter. 
Oh, she says dreadful things. She says you and I 
Will kill her; that we make her, or would make her, 
T*A\ falsehoods to her husband, or bring down 
His justice on our heads ; and she forbids me, 
Hov.-ever innocent you may call, or think it, 



8 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act i. 

Bring letters any more. She bade me give it you 
Back again — see — unopened. 

Giulio. 'Tis a pity 

That, too. 

Flordilisa. Why, Giulio ? 

Giulio. Oh, Signor Antonio 

Read it me ; — ay, he did — he's such a gentleman. 
He said, — " See, Giulio, I would not have you wrong 
Your mistress in a thought ; nor give you an office 
Might do yourself the thought of wrong, or harm." 
You know I told you what he wrote outside — 
You recollect it — there it is — " Most harmless, — 
I dare to add, most virtuous ;" and there's more 
Besides here, underneath. Did she read that ? 

Fiordilisa. I know not. She read very quickly, at any rate; 
Then held it off, as tho' it frighten'd her. 
And gave it back. And she looked angry too ; 
At least, she did not look as she is used, 
But turn'd right so, and waived me to be gone. — 
I cannot bear to do the thing she likes not. 

Giulio. Nor I. 

Fiordilisa. Well — so I think. But hush — hush — hush ! 
a step ! . [_Runs to the loindow. 

And coming quickly ! — 'Tis the Signor — 'Tis ! 
So soon come back too ! — Strike up the guitar — 
Strike up that song of Hope, my lady loves— 
Quickly now — There"'s a good little Giulio. [^Exit. 



SCENE 11.] A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. 9 

Gitilio. Little ! well, — come, for siicli an immense young 
gentlewoman 
Tliafs pretty well ! She has fallen in love, I fear, 
Whh some tall elderly person. — But the song. 

Giulio. (Siiif/s.) 

Hope, thou pretty child of heaven I I pnthee, Hope, abide — 
I will not a-<k too much of thee — by my suffering side. 
Grief'is good for humbleness, and earth is fair to see ; 
And if I do my duty, Hope, I think thou'lt stay with me. 

Enter Agolanti. 

Agolanti. What frivolous ante-chamber tinkling now 
Attunes the pulse to levity ? j)uts folly 
In mind of vice, as tho"' the hint were needed ? 
(Listening/.) The door shuts, now the song's done. What 

was it ? 
What sang'st tliou, boy .'* 

Giulio. A song of Hope, sir. 

Agolanti. Hope ! 

What hope ! 

Giulio. I will repeat it, sir, so please you .'' 
The words, not music. \_H<' repeats the icords. 

'Tis a song my lady 
Is fond of. 

Agolanti. When she's troubled most ? with sickness .'' 

Giulio. No, sir, I think when she''s most cheerful. 

Agolanti. Tiiat 

Paper within thy ve.st — Is that the words? 
Give it me. 



10 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act i. 

Giulio. Nay, sir, it is none of mine. 

Acjolanti. Give it me, boy. 

Giulio. I may not, sir. — I will not. 

Agolanti. Play not the lion's cub with me. That letter 
Was given thee by Antonio Rondinelli. 
He, and the profane wit, Fulvio da Riva, 
Were seen this morning by the Baptistery, 
Talking with thee. Give it me ; or myself 
Will take the answer to Antonio's house 
In bloody characters. 

Giulio (aside). 'Tis a most sacred letter. 
And ought to fell him, like a cuff o' the conscience. 
Farewell, my place ! Farewell, my lady sweet ! 
Giulio is gone. — There is the letter, sir ; 
Take it, (aside) and be a devil choked with scripture. 

Agolanti. Unopen'd ! come — thou meanest me well, 
Giulio ? 
Ah ! — but — why didst thou loiter in thy message ? 
How came it that this fair epistle kiss'd not 
The lady's fairer hands ? for that's the style. 

Giulio. It did, sir. 

Agolanti. Did ! 

Giulio. Yes, sir. My lady had it. 

(Aside) How like you that ? You have not read the whole 
On the outside. (Aside) His very joy torments him. 

Agolanti. She read it not, like the good lady she is ; 
But yet you gave it her. 



I 



scKNE II.] A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. II 

Giulio. He read it me ; 

He dicl, — the noble AiUonio read it me, 
To save my youth, every way, from harm. 

Agolanti (aside). Some vile double signification, ad- 
dressed 
To riper brains, must have secured the words. 
The foresight was too gross, if not a coward's ! 
There has been, after all, I needs must own it, 
A strange forbearance, for so hot a lover, 
In this Antonio. It is now five years 
Since first he sought Ginevra ; nearly four. 
Since still he loved her, tho' another's wife ; 
And — .saving that his face is to be noted 
Looking at hers wherever it appears. 
At church, or the evening walk, or tournament, — 
And that Fve mark\l him drooping hereabouts, 
Yet rather as some witless, lonely man. 
Than one that shunn'd me, — my sharp household eyes 
Have fix'd on no confusion of his making ; 
No blush ; no haste ; no tactics of the chamber ; 
No pertness of loud servant — not till now — 
Till now ; — but then this noic may show all this 
To have been but a more deep and quiet mastery 
Of crime and devilish knowledge — too secure 
To move uneasily, — and totj high scornful 
Of me, to give me even the grace of trouble. 
And yet this seal unbroken, and these words — {^Reading. 



12 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. f act i. 

" Most harmless ; — I dare to add, most virtuous? "" 
And here again below ; — 

" I have written what I have written on the outside of 
this letter, hoping that it may move you to believe the 
possibility of its not being unworthy to meet the purest of 
mortal eyes.^"* 

Filthiest hypocrite ! caught in his own bird-lime. 

(Opens and reads the letter.) 

" As you have opened neither my first letter nor my 
second, written at intervals of six months each, from the 
moment when my name was first again mentioned to you 
since your marriage, I hardly dare hope that the words I 
am now writing shall have the blessedness of being looked 
upon, although they truly deserve it. 

" Truly, for most piteously they deserve it. 1 am going 
to reward (may I utter such a word ?) your kindness, by the 
greatest and most dreadful return I can make it. I will 
write to you no more. 

" But this promise is a thing so terrible to me, and so 
unsupportable, except in the hope of its doing you some 
good, that I have one reward to beg for myself; not as a 
condition, but as a last and enduring charity. 

" I no longer ask you to love me, however innocently, or 
on the plea of its being some shadow of relief to you (in the 
sweet thouglit of loving) from an unbappiness, of which all 
the world speaks. [Agolanti pauses^ c/reatly moved. 



scRNE 11] A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. 13 

Is it so then ? and the world speaks of me, 

And basely speaks ! lie has been talkinf^ then, 

And acting too. But let me know this all. [^Reudbuj. 

*' Neither yet will I beg you not to hate nie ; for so 
gentle a heart cannot hate anybody ; and you never were 
unjust, except to yourself. \_Pauses a little ar/aiit. 

" But this I do beg; first, that you will take care of a 

health, which heaven has given you no right to neglect, 

whatever be your unhappiness ; and which, under heaven, 

is the best support of it ; — and secondly, that when you 

liiink of the friends of whom death has deprived you, or 

may deprive, and whom it will give you joy to meet again 

beyond the grave, you may not be unwilling to behold 

among them the face of 

"Antonio Rondinelli. 

" Written with prayers and tears before the sacred image 

of the Virgin," 

[Agolanti crosses himself, and pauses; then holds the 

letter apart, as if in disgust ; and then again resumes 

his self-possession. 

Giulio, I think since first I took thee from 

The orphan college, now some three years back, 

I have been no unkind master to thee, nor poor one ; 

Have stinted thee in nought fitting thy station, 

Nor hurt thy growth and blooming .'' 

Giulio, Sir, you hired me 

For certain duties, which, with kindly allowance 



]4 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act i. 

For faults of youth, I hope I have performed. 

My life has been most happy ; and ray lady 

Most bountiful to her poor songster. [Sheds tears. 

Agolanti. Thou 

Hast liaply saved some little treasure then, 
Against thy day of freedom ? 

Giulio. Not a doit, sir. 

What freedom should I think of, being free 
From thought itself, and blithe as the blue day ? 

Agolanti. Antonio Rondinelli is not rich. 
His mother and he hide in proud poverty 
From all but a few friends. 

Giulio {aside). Noble Antonio ! 

He gave me a jewel, ere I knew him poor, 
Worth twenty golden florins ; and his cap 
Starved for it many a month. 

Agolanti. New employers 

Produce new duties, Giulio; to the hurt, 
Sometimes, of old ones; and 'tis wise betimes 
To see they vex and tangle not. These mixtures 
Of services, — these new pure confidences 
With masters not thine own, — these go-betweens 
'Twixt virtue and virtue,— loves desiring not 
Their own desires, — and such like angel-adulteries 
(Heaven pardon me the word !) — suit me not, Giulio, 
Nor a wise house. Therefore, before thine innocent 
Lady (for such, with mutual love, I own her, 



SCENE II.] A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. l.i 

And scorn of this poor fop) learns danoeroiis pity 

Of thy fair-seeming messages, — dangerous, 

Not to her virtue, but her virtue's fame, — 

This house tliou leavest ! Tliou wouldst taste the pride 

Of poverty, and will, and kinless freedom — 

Do so ! And when thou learn'st how friendship ends, 

In treachery, and in thanklessness begun, 

And the cold crust turns bitter and quarrelsome, 

Blame not thou me ; nor think those tears are payment 

For guilt on thy side, and for love on mine ! 

Giulio (aside). Love ! what a word from him ! and to 
poor me. 
Thus thrust upon the world, he knows not whither : 
{AloiuT). Sir, you mistake my tears; but 'tis no matter. 
Guilty or not, I cannot quit this house 
With thoughts less kind than sorrow. — Sir, farewell, [^Exit. 

Agolanti. 'Twas virtuously done, if not most falsely. 
This seemingly celestial aversion 
Of the very eyesight from unlawful words. 
Or was it part of the system .^ — of the show, — 
Which frets me daily with malign excess 
Of undemanded patience .'* cold at best, 
Resentful as the worst ! Antonio, 
I do suspect, she loves not ; me, I know, 
She hates ; me, v.hom she should love ; whom was bound 
And sworn to love ; for which contempt and wrong. 
Fools, that love half a story and whole blame. 



16 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act i. 

Begin to babble against the person wrong'd ! 
Times are there, when I feel inclined to sweep 
The world away from me, and lead my own 
Life to myself, unlook'd into with eyes : j 

That know me not ; but use, and sympathy 
Even with those that wrong me, and the right 
Of comely reputation, keep me still 
Wearing a show of good with a grieved heart. 

Enter a Servant. 

Servant. My lady, sir, hearing of your return 
Home suddenly, and having visiters, 
Entreats the honour of your presence. 

Agolanti {aside). Now 

To test this hateful gossip. " Suddenly ; " — 
Was that her word, or the knave's? No matter. [Aloud) 

Visiters, — 
Who are they ? 

Servant. Lady Olimpia, and her friend 

Lady Diana, with two gentlemen ; 
Strangers, I think, sir; one a Roman gentleman. 
Come from his Holiness's court. 

Agolanti. The same, 

Dou})tless, I saw this morning ; by which token 
The other is the sneering amorist, 
Da Riva. He, I thought, respected me ; 
But see —he knows these women, they Antonio — 



SCENE in.] A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. 17 

Have 1 been hasty ? or is— Tlje black plague choke 
All niecldlertj with — 

To the Servant. 

I will come speedily. 

£ Exeunt severally. 



SCENE III. 

Another Boom in AooLANTrs house. Ginevka, Oli.mima, 
Diana, Colonna, and Da Riva, discovered sitting. 
FiOKDiLiSA standing hcliind her ladg's chair. 

OUmpia. Dearest Lady Gincvra, to remain 
Shut up when all the world are at the windows, 
Or otherwise owning the great common joy, 
Is clearly impossible. — Observe now, pray : — 
On Friday the Pope comes; Saturday, chapel 
At the Annunziata ; — Sunday, at Saint Lorenzo; 
Monday, the chase ; Tuesday, the race; Wednesday, 
The tilts and drama ; and on Thursday he goes. 
So there's si.\ lives for you ; a life a day, 
To make you well again, and merry, and careless. 

Colonna. Most vital arguments ! 

Ginevra. Too vital, may-be. 

Remember, Lady Olimpia, I have been ill ; — 
I am but ffeltinjj better ; and such draughts 
Of pleasure and amazement, pour'd unceasing, 
Might drown the little faculties of ]>oor me. 

c 



18 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act i. 

Diana. One day — could you not try one day, and then 
Enjoy, or fear another, as it suited ? 

Ollmpia. Ay, one — one — one. Try but one day, and then 
Trust me if one day would not give you strength 
For pretty little two, and prettier three. 

Da Riva. And, madam, the first day is both the noblest 
And the most gentle, — a flow of princely draperies 
Through draperied streets; bringing us, it is true, 
Emotion, but yet soothing it, and blessing 
With sacred hand. Weakness itself is touch'd 
At ceremonial sights like these, with sweet 
And no unstrengthening tears, bathing humility 
In heavenly reassurance. And, dear lady, 
'Twill give a nature, so composed as yours 
With Christian grace and willing cheerfulness, 
A joy at once sacred, and earthly, and charming, 
To see the face of the accomplished man 
Whom Providence, most potent seen when mildest, 
Has raised to be the prince of Christendom 
In this our day, when wit is questioning faith, 
And mild religion answers with his eyes 
Of charity, the unanswerable conclusion. 

Colonna. Da Riva, I am to bring thy verse and thee 
To his Beatitude's most knowing knowledge ; 
But do thou step before me, and speak thus, 
And thou art made a cardinal. 



SCENE III.] A LECJEND OF FLORENCE. \'J 

Giiu-vra. Is his Iloliiuss 

So very and so beautiruUy gracious 
To elo(juciice and letters .'' 

Culonna, V faith, madam, 

Our blessed Father seems to be of opinion, 
That whatsoever good or beauty exists 
Must needs belong, like angels, to the ciiurch ; 
And as he finds them, where severer men 
(Not the best judges of angels) might overlook them. 
He makes us know them better ; bids them come 
Forth from the crowd, and show their winged wits, 
And rise, and sit within his princely beams. 

Olinipia. Come; — you accord ? you cannot resist reasons 
Sweet as all these ? and to say truth, there is 
One gentle reason more, which must convince you. 
We want your husband's windows, lady mine; — 
They face the veriest heaven of all the streets 
For seeing the procession ; and how can we 
Enter that paradise of a balcony 
Without the house's angel ? What would people 
Say to the intruders, you not being there ? 

Ginevra. Oh, nothing very unseasonable, be sure ; 
Nor what the lilies and roses in their cheeks, 
And wit in their eyes, could not refute most happily. 
Well, dear Diana, should my husband's judgment 
Encourage me to think my health woulil bear it, 
I would fain venture, but — 1 hear him coniing. 



20 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act i- 

At all events, the windows will be gladly 

Fill'd with your pleasures ; the report of which 

Will afterwards make them mine. [Enter Agolanti. 

Sir, the ladies 
Olimpia and Diana you know well ; 
Also a name honour'd by all, Da Riva ; 
Be pleased to know their friend, a courteous gentleman 
From Rome, the Signor Cesare Colonna. 

Afjolanti. He's_ welcome, for his friend's sake, and his 
own. 
I trust our holy Father keeps his health, sir, 
In this his gracious journey ? 

Colonna. Sir, he holds him, 

As his good habit is, in blest condition. 
To the great joy of all that love good men 
And sovereign church. 

Agolanli. You hold, sir, I perceive. 

Some happy office near his sacred person ? 

Cvlonna. One of the poor captains of his guard, sir ; 
Nor near enough to make the fortune proud. 
Nor yet so far removed as not to share 
Some grace of recognition. 

Af/olanti. I may not envy you : 

J3ut I may be allow'd to think such fortune 
As happy, as 'tis worthily bestow'd. 
Pardon me ; but this lady's delicate health 
Will warrant some small trespass on your courtesies. ,. 



SCENE Ml] A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. 21 

{To GiNEVRA.) How fares it with my love these last three 
hours ? 

Ginevra. {CJieerfiiUi/.) Thanks — I do very well. 

Olitnjfiit. 1 fear we have tired her 

Somewhat, with our loud talk, 8i<:;nor Franeesco. 

Ginevra. No ; 'tis like bright health come to talk with us : 
Is it not ? (To her lutsbafid.) 

Agolanti. {Aside.) She knows I hate it. — Lady Olimpia 
Brings ever a sjirightly stirring to the spirit, 
And her fiiir friend a balm. {Aside to Ginevra.) \Vhat 

want they now, 
This flaunter and this insipidity ? 

Ginevra. {Aloud.) Our neighbour and her friends bring 
a petition. 
That it would please you to convenience them 
A\ ith your fair windows for the coming spectacle ; 
Yourself, if well enough, doubling the grace 
With your good company. 

Afjolanti. {Aside.) I thought as much. 

At every turn my will is to be torn from me. 
And at her soft suggestion. (Aloud.) My windows 
Cannot be better filPd, than with such beauty, 
And wit and modest eloquence. 

Olimpia. i^Aside to Da Riva.) Is he sneering'' 
Or is his zeal, and fame for polite manners, 
Proving itself, in spite of his own teeth .•' 
Sharpening its edge upon this oily venom ? 



22 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act i. 

Da Riva. ^Somewhat of both ; he sneers, because he 
hates us ; 
And would not have it seen, because he fears us. 
His will and vanity count on our obtuseness, 
Just as it suits them. (Agolanti and the Ladies talk apart.^ 

Colonna. Noticed you how pale 

The unhappy lady turn'd, when the song ended, 
And she bade shut the door ? 

Da Riva. She's paler now. 

Let"'s interrupt him. — Good Slgnor Francesco, 
We thank you much ; but windows, friends, and spectacle, 
And, let us add, warranted by his love. 
Husband and all, would miss the topmost flower 
Of our delight, were this sweet lady absent ; 
And she has threaten'd us with the cruel chance, 
Unless your better knowledge of her health 
Think better, than herself, of its free right. 

Agolanti. Oh Sir, it were impossible to know 
A lady better than she knows herself. 
What say you. Madam .? (To Ginevka.) 

Ginevra. The best thought of all, 

Perhaps, were to await the time's arrival, 
And see how I feel then. 

Jf/olanti. Truly, methinks, 

A discreet judgment, and approved by all 
Wiio set the lady's welfare above all, 
As we in this room do. 



scENK iii.l A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. 23 

Olivipia. And every one 

That knows her, — unless it ho the devil himself. 
Manners forgive my uttering his name 
In sucli good eompany. Dearest Gincvra, 
Come you with me. A word wltli you in })rivate, 
As we descend. And we'll request these gentlemen 
To clear oiir way before us. 

Colonna and Da Riva. A fair day 
To Signor Agolanti, and may fairer 
Befall us this day week. {Goin<j.) 

Olimjna. Yes, Signor mine, 

Be sure you make your wife well by tliat day, 
^^ ith some transcendent charmingness ; or none 
But envious wives, and horrible old men, 
Will think you the good spouse you are, or let you 
Have any peace. 

Agolanti. (^Fiercely to his toife as she is going.) \^'hat 
insolence is this. 
And woman's plot .? Be in the purple chamber 
In twenty minutes. Do you hear me qieak ? 

(He xcrings ha- hand sharply^ and she makes signs 
of obedience.) 
A fair day to my courteous visitors. 
And may they ever have the joy they bring. 

lExeunt. 

END OF ACT Tllli FIRST. 



24 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act ii. 



ACT II. 

SCENE I. 

A Garden of Dianas Villa. 



Enter Rondinelli, Colonna, and Da Riva. 

Colonna. I pray thee, Antonio, be comforted. 

Rondinelli. I am, I am ; as far as friends can comfort 
me : 
And they do comfort. How can I love love. 
And not love all things lovely ? sweet discourse, 
And kindness, and dear friendships. But this suffering 
Sweet saint, — the man, the household fiend, I mean — 
Will kill her. 

Colonna. I tell thee, no. In the first place 
Her health is really better. Is it not ? 

Da liiva. Olimpia and Diana both have staked 
Their credit on it. The man's a fool no doubt, 
But she is wise. 

Colonna. Ay, is she ; for lo ! secondly, 

She loves thee, Antonio. 

Da Riva. Yes ; by that pure look 

We told thee of, at mention of thy name. 
She does ; — it was as though her mind retreated 



scKNE I.] A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. 25 

To sonic blest, serious thought, far off but possible; 
Then ended with a sigh. 

Colonna. And blush'd withal. 

(Aside.) I (lid not see the blush, I must confess; 
Hut beinn; so virtuous, there must have been one. 
And he'll be glad to hear of it. {Aloud.) Well, seeing 
She loves thee then, as thou must needs believe, 
For all that modest earth(|uake of thine head, 
Bethink thee what a life ivif/tiu a life 
She has to retire into, sweet and secret. 
For help from common temper such as his; 
Help, none the worse, eh .'' for a small, small bit 
Of stubbornness, such as the best gentle wives 

INIust have in self-defence. Now 

RondinelU. Fear me not. 

Such blessed thoughts must needs give me some comfort ; 
And I shan't quarrel with the comfort's fashion. 

Colnnna. Well then, you'll let me have my fashion out.'' 
YouU let me speak after my old blithe mood, 
Secure of my good meaning ? 

Ro7uUneUi. Ay, and thankfully. 

Coloivia. Why then, sir, lo<ik ; there are a hundred 
marriages 
In Florence, and a hundred more to those. 
And hundreds to those hundreds, bad as this ; 
As ill assorted, and as lover-hated ; 
(Alwavs allowing for the nobler difference. 



26 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act ii. 

And therefore greater power to bear) ; and yet 

They do not kill ; partly, because of lovers ; 

Partly, of pride ; partly, indifference ; 

Partly, of hate (a good stanch long-lived passion) ; 

Partly, because all know the common case, 

And custom's custom. Therell be a hundred couples 

To-night, 'twixt Porta Pinti and San Gallo, 

Cutting each other's hearts out with mild looks, 

Upon the question, whether the Pope's mule 

Will be in purple or scarlet ; — yet not one 

Will die of it ; no, ' faith ; nor were a death 

To happen, would the survivors' eyes refuse 

A tear to their old disputant and partner. 

That kept life moving somehow, 

Rondinelli. By which logic 

You would infer, to comfort me, that all 
Marriages are unhappy. 

Colonna. Not unhappy, 

Though not very happy. 

Da Riva. Witii exceptions ? 

Colonna. Surely for such good fellows as ourselves ! 

Da Riva. And doubtless 

A time will come 

Colonna. Oh, ay ; a time will come — 

Poet and prophet — Redeunt Saturnia recjna. 
Now hear him on his favourite golden theme, 
" A time will come ; " — a time, eh ? when all maniagcs 



scKNK I.] A LEGEND OF FT^ORENTF. ?7 

Shall be like some tew dozen ; exceptions, rules ; 
Every day, .Sunday : and each man's pain in the head 
A crowning satisfaction I 

Dj. If ha. No ; but still 

A time, when sense and reason shall have grown 
As much more rife than now, and foolish thorns 
As much less in request, as we, now living, 
Surpass rude times and savage ancestors. 
Improvement stopp'd not at the muddy cave, 
Why at the rush-strewn chamber ? The wild man's dream, 
Or what he might have dreamt, when at his wildest, 
Is, to the civilised man, his commonplace : 
And what should time so reverence in ourselves. 
As in his due good course, not still to alter? 

Colonna. Till chariots run some twenty miles an hour? 

Da liiva. Ay, thirty or forty. 

Colonna. Oh ! oh ! \\'ithout horses ? 

Say, without horses. 

Da Riva. Well, to oblige you, — yes. 

Colojina. And sailing-boats without a sail ! Ah, ha! 
Well, glory be to poetry and to {X)ets! 
Their cookery is no mincing ! Ah ! ha ! ha ! 

[They both lauijh. 
They certainly, while they're about it, do 
Cut and carve worlds out, with their golden swords, 
To which poor Alexander's was a pumpkin. 
VVMiat say you, Antonio? 



28 A LEGEND OF^FLORENCE. [act tt. 

Bondinelli. My dear friends both, 

What you were saying of the good future time 
Made me but think too sadly of the present; 
Pardon me — I should think more sadly far, 
But for your loves and ever generous patience. 
Yet let me take you back to our fair friends, 
From whom my gusty griefs bore you away. 
Nay, my good wish rewards me : — see, one comes. 

Enter Olimpia. 

Olimpia. A certain Giulio, in a pretty grief 
Though for himself alone, and not another, 
Inquires for Signor Rondinelli. 

• [Antonio kisses her hand and exit. 
'Twas lucky that I saw this Giulio first, 
For he's a page of pages ; a Spartan boy ; — 
Quite fix'd on telling his beloved Signor 
Antonio all the truths which the said Signor 
May now, or at any time in all futurity, 
Insist on knowing. Poor fellow ! he's turn'd away. 

'Da Riva. For what ? 

Olimpia. Come in, 

And you shall hear. Your ices and sherbets 
Await you ; and your cheeks will need the cooling. 

\_Exeunt. 



SCENE n] A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. 29 



SCENE II. 

A Chamht'r hung with purpl'. awl contuinimj a rnhiiict 
picture of the Madonna, but othericise little /urninhed. 
GiN'tvuA discovered sitting at a u-indoic. 

Enter Agolanti. 
Agolanti. Every wav she opposes nic, even with anus 
Of peace and love. I bade remove that picture 
From this deserted room. Can she have had it 
Brought back this instant, knowing how my anger, 
Just though it be, cannot beliold unmoved 
The face of suffering heaven .'' Oh artifice 
In very piety ! 'Twcre piety to veil it 
From our discourse, and look another way. 

[During this speech, Ginevka comes forward, and 
Agolanti, after closing the cabinet doors over the 
picture, haiuls her a chair; adjusting another for 
himself, but continuing to staiid. 
Ginevra. {Cheerfulh/.) The world seems glad after its 
hearty drink 
Of rain. 1 fear'd when you came back this morning, 
The shower had stopp'd you, or that you were ill. 

Agolanti. You fear'd ! you hojied. \N hat fear you that 
I fear, 
Or hope for that I hope for ? A truce, madam, 



30 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [actii. 

To these exordiums and pretended interests, 
Whose only shallow intent is to delay, 
Or to divert, the sole dire subject,— me. 
Soh ! you would see the spectacle ! you, who start 
At openings of doors, and falls of pins. 
Trumpets and drums quiet a lady"'s nerves ; 
And a good hacking blow at a tournament 
Equals burnt feathers or hartshorn, for a stimulus 
To pretty household tremblers, 

Ginevra. I expressed 

No wish to see the tournament, nor indeed 
Anything, of my own nccord ; or contrary 
To your good judgment. 

Af/okmti. ■ Oh, of course not. Wishes 

Are never expressM for, or by, contraries ; 
Nor the good judgment of an anxious husband 
Held forth as a pleasant thing to differ with. 

Ginevra. It is as easy as sitting in my chair, 
To say I will not go: and I will not. 
Be pleased to think that settled. 

Arjolanti. The more easily, 

As "'tis expected / should go, is it not ? 
And then you will sit happy at receipt 
Of letters from Antonio Rondinelli. 

Ginevra. Return''d unopen'd, sir. 

Affolanti. How many ? 

Ginevra. Thiee. 



SCENE II.] A LEGEM) OF FLORENCE. 31 

Ayolunti. Yt)u are conrct, as to those three. How 
many 
Opcii'd ? — Your look, niaclaiii, is wondrous logical ; 
Conclusive by mere pathos of astonishment ; 
And cramm'd witli scorn, from pure unscornfulness. 
I have, "'tis true, strong doubts of your regard 
For him, or any one ; —of your love of power 
None, — as you know I have reason ; — tho"" you take 
Ways of refined provokingness to wreak it. 
Antonio knows these fools you saw but now, 
And fools have foolish friendships, and bad leagues 
For getting a little power, not natural to them. 
Out of their laugh'd-at betters. Be it as it may, 
All this, I will not have these prying idlers 
Put my domestic troubles to the blush ; 
Nor you sit thus, in ostentatious meekness, 
Playing the victim with a pretty breath, 
And smiles that say "God help me.'' — Well, madam, 
N\ hat do t/ou say ? 

Ginsvra. I say I will do whatever 

You think best, and desire. 

Af/olanti. And make the worst of it 

By whatsoever may mislead, and vex ^ 
There — now you make a pretty sign, as tho' 
Your silence were com pel I'd. 

Ginerra. W'li.it can I sav, 

Or what alas ! not say, ami not he cliided ? 



32 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act ii. 

You should not use me thus. I have not strength for it. 
So great as you may think. My late sharp illness 
Has' left me weak. 

Agolanti. IVe known you weaker, madam, 

But never feeble enough to want the streno-th 
Of contest and perverseness. Oh, men too, 
Men may be weak, even from the magnanimity 
Of strength itself ; and women can take poor 
Advantages, that were in men but cowardice. 

Ginevra. {Aside) Dear Heaven ! what humblest doiil)ts 
of our self-knowledge 
Should we not feel, when tyranny can talk thus. 

Agolanti. Can you pretend, madam, with your surpassing 
Candour and heavenly kindness, that you never 
Utter 'd one gently-sounding word, not meant 
To give the hearer pain ? me pain ? your husband ? 
AVhom in all evil thoughts you so pretend 
To be unlike. 

Ginevra. I cannot dare pretend it. 

I am a woman, not an angel. 

Agolanti. Ay, 

See there — you have! you own it ! how pretend then 
To make such griefs of every petty syllable. 
Wrung from myself by everlasting scorn .'' 

Ginevra- One pain is not a thousand ; nor one w^rong, 
Acknowledged and repented of, the habit 
Of unprovoked and unrepented years. 



scENK II. 1 A LliGEND OF FL()RL.N( li. 3:J 

AgolaiUi. Of unjuovoked ! Oh, let all j)rovoc'ation 
Take every brutish shape it can devise 
To irv endurance \\ith ; taunt it in failure, 
Grind it in want, stoop it with family shames, 
Make gross the name of mother, call it fool, 
Pander, slave, coward, or whatsoever opjirobrium 
Makes the soul swoon within its rage, for want 
Of some great answer, terrible as its wrong, 
And it shall be as nothing to this miserable, 
Mean, meek-voiceJ, most malignant lie of lies, 
This angel-mimicking non-provocation 
From one too cold to enrage, and weak to tread on ! 
You never loved me once — You loveil me not — 
Never did — no — not wli^n before the altar 
With a mean coldness, a worldly-minded coldness 
And lie on your lips, you took me for your husband, 
Thinking to have a house, a purse, a liberty, 
By, but not for, the man you scorn'd to love ! 

Ginevra. I scorn'd you not — and knew not what scorn 
was — 
Being scarcely past a child, and knowing nothing 
Rut trusting thoughts and innocent daily habits. 
Oh, could you trust yourself — But why repeat 
^\'hat still is thus repeated day hy day. 
Still ending with the question, " \\ hy repeat?" 

\^Rislnrj and mnrinq ahout. 
You make the blood at last mount to my brain, 

i> 



:54 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act ii, 

And tax me past endurance. Wliat have I done, 
Good God ! what have I done, that I am thus 
At the mercy of a mystery of tyranny. 
Which from its victim demands every virtue, 
And brings it none ? 

Agolanti. I thank you, madam, humbly. 

That was sincere, at least. 

Ginevra. I lieg your pardon. 

Anger is ever excessive, and speaks wrong. 

Afjohnti. This is the gentle, patient, unprovoked, 
And unprovoking, never-answering she ! 

Ginevra. Nay, nay, say on ;— I do deserve it,— I 
Who speak such evil of anger, and then am angry. 
Yet you might pity me too, being Jiike yourself 
In fellowship there at least. 

Agolanti. A taunt in friendliness ! 

Meekness's happiest condescension ! 

Ginevra. ^ ^^ 

So help me Heaven !— I but spoke in consciousness 
Of what was weak on both sides. There's a love 
In that, would you but know it, and encourage it. 
The consciousness of wrong, in wills not evil. 
Brings chanty. Be you but charitable. 
And I am grateful, and we both shall learn. 

Agolanti. I am conscious of no wrong in this dispute, 
Nor when we dispute, ever, — except the wrong 
Done to myself by a will far more wilful, 



>cKNKii.| A LKGENI) OF FI.ORKNCK. 3i 

Hccausc less moved, and less infjeiiiious. 
Lei them get cliaritv, that show it. 

Ginevra {who hns reseated herself). 1 prav V»)ii, 
Let Fiorddisa come to me. My lips 
Will show you that I faint. 

[Agolanti rings a bell on the table ; nud FioRdilisa 
enters to her mistress. 
Ayolanti. W hen voii have seen yovir mistress well 
again, 
Go to Matteo ; and tell him, from herself, 
That 'tis her orders she be excused at present 
To all that come, her state requiring it. 
And convalescence. Mark vow that addition. 
She's getting well ; but to get well, needs rest. \^Exit. 

Fiordllisa. Needs rest! Alas! When will vou let her 
rest, 
But in her grave ? My lady ! My sweet mistress ! 

{_'4ppli/ing a volatile tn her temples. 
She knows me. — He has gone : — the Signor's gone. 
(Aside.) She sighs, as though she mourn'd him. 
Ginevra {listenim/). What's that .'' 

Fiordilisa. Nothing, madam ; — I heard nothing. 
Ginevra. Everything 

Gives me a painful wonder : — you, your face. 
These walls. My hand seems to me not more human, 
Than animal ; and all things unaccountable. 
'Twill pass away. What's that ? [./ rhiirch-nrinni is heard. 

1) 2 



3G A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act a. 

Fiordilisa. Yes, I hear that. 

'Tis Father Ansehno, madam, in the chapel, 
Touching the new organ. In truth, I ask'd him. 
Think ing that as the Signor is so moved 
By wliatsoever speaks to him of religion, 
It might have done no harm to you and him, madam. 
To hear it while conversing. But he's old 
And slow, is the good father. 

[GiNEVRA kisses her, and then weeps ahundantli/. 

Ginevra. Thank Heaven ! thank Heaven and the sweet 
sounds ! I have not 
Wept, Fiordilisa, now, for many a day, 
And the sound freshens me ; — loosens my heart. 

\_Mimc. 
O blessed music ! at thy feet we lie. 
Pitied of angels surely. 

Fiordilisa. Perhaps, madam. 

You will rest here, and try to sleep awhile ? 

Ginevra. No, Fiordilisa (risinr/). Meeting what must be. 
Is half commanding it ; and in this breath 
Of heaven my mind feels duty set erect, 
Fresh out of tears. Bed is for night, not day, 
When duty's done. So cheer we as we may. 

\^Exeunt ; the music continuing. 

END OF ACT THE SECOND. 



scENK I J A LEGEND OF FLOREN( Iv 37 



ACT III. 

S C E X K I . 
A Room in Agolanti's Villa. 



Enter Agolanti. 

Affulanti. What have I done, great heavens! to be thus 
tortured ? 
My gates beset with these intjiiisitive fcx)ls; 
A wife, strong as her hate, so I be dumb, 
Falling in gulfs of weakness for a word ; 
And all the while, dastardly nameless foes, 
Who know where I am weak, filling mv household 
\\ ith talk of ominous things, — sad mourning shapes 
That walk my grounds, none knowing how they enter d ; 
And in the dead of night, outcries for help. 
As of a female crouchinji to the door. 
Let me be met by daylight, man to man, 
If 'tis to come to this ; and to loud lies 
Answer with my contempt, and with my sword. 

Enter a Servant. 
Servant. The gentlemen that were here the other day, 



38 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act ju. 

Signer Da Riva, and the Roman gentleman, 
Desire to kiss your hands. 

Affolanti. Fool ! were not orders 

Given you to admit no one ? 

Sei'vant. To my lady, sir ; 

We did not understand, to you. 

Aijolanti. Idiots and torments ! 

Enter Da Riva and Colonna. Exit Servant. 

Colonna. We kiss your hands, courteous Signor Fran- 
cesco. 

Da Riva. And come to thank you for the seats you have 
given us. 
In all the city there is no .such throne 
Of comfort, for a sovereign command 
Of the best part o' the show ; which will be glorious. 

Colonna. And with your lady for the queen o' the thione, 
The Pope himself may look up as he walks. 
And worship you with envy. 

Agolanti. Nay, sirs, you are too flattering. Perhaps 
The lady — 

Colonna. And what makes us the more delighted 
With your determination thus to give her 
Unto the grateful spectacle, is a certain 
\\\c talk, sir, that has come to our disdainful 
And most incredulous ears of — What do you think? 

Da Riva. Ay, sir, 'twill tax your fancy. 



scKNK I.J A LE(;KXn OF FLORENX'E. :vj 

Cohmna. Of your jealousy ; 

Nay cruelty, forsooth ! 

Da Rivii. We lau^h'd it down ; 

Look'd it i' the foolish face, and inadc it blush. 
Yes, sir, the ahsunlity was put out of countenance; 
Hut then, you know, that countenance was but one ; 
And twenty absurd grave faces, going about. 
Big with a scandal, are as fertile as bees, 
And make as busy multitudes of fools. 

Agolanti. Sirs, with this suddin incursion of strange 
news — 
And your as strange, T must say, though well-meant 
Fancy, of the necessity of refuting it — 

Culonna. Fancy, good sir ! — Dear sir, we are most Ic^ath 
To shock your noble knowledge of yourself 
With tiie whole truth — with the whole credulous fiction ; 
But to convince you how requisite is the step 
Thus to be taken in the truth's behalf, 
The theme is constant, both in court and market-place, 
That you're a very tyrant ! 

Da liiva. And to a saint ! 

Vex her from morn to night — 

Colonna. Frighten her — 

Da Riva. Cast her 

Into strange swoons, and monstrous shows of death. 

Agulanti. Monstrous indeed ! and shows ! 1 hat is most 
true. 



40 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act in- 

Those are the shows ! and I am to be at the spectacle 

To let her face make what display it can 

Of the mean lie, and mock me to the world. 

Pardon me — Fni disturb'd — Pm not myself — 

My house is not quite happy — you see it — Whose is ? 

But look, sir, — Why should Florence fall on me ? 

Why select me, as the scape-goat of a common 

And self-resented misery ? 'Tis a lie, 

A boy's lie, a turn'd-off servants lie. 

That mine is a worse misery than their own, 

Or more deserved. You know the Strozzi family, 

You know the Baldi, Rossi, Brunelleschi — 

You do, Signor Da lliva, — the Guidi also, 

And Arregucci : — well, — are they all smiles ? 

All comfort? Is there, on the husbands"' sides, 

No roughness ? no plain-speaking ? or, on the wives'. 

No answering, tart or otherwise ? — no black looks ? 

No softest spite ; nor meekness, pale with malice ? 

No smile with the teeth set, shivering forth a sneer .'' 

Take any dozen couples, the first you think of, 

Those you know best : and see, if matrimony 

Has been success with them, or a dull failure ; 

Dull at the best ; probably, damn'd with discord ; 

A hell, the worse for being carried about 

With quiet looks; or, horriblest of all. 

Betwixt habitual hate and fulsome holiday. 

Da Riva. Oh, sir, you wrong poor mixM humanity, 



SCENE I.] A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. 11 

And think not how much nobleness relieves it. 
Nor what a heap of good old love there lies 
Sometimes in seeming quarrel. I thought you, sir, 
I must confess, a more enduring- Christian. 

Culonna. And churchman, sir. I own 1 have been 
astonish'd — 
Pardon one somewhat nearer than yourself 
Unto the church's prince — to hear von speak 
Thus stranffelv of a holv ordinance. 

Agohnti {aside). These men will make me mad. Have 
thev come here 
To warn me, or to torment me .'' — Sir, the earth 
Holds not a man bows down with lowlier front 
To holy church and to all holy ordinances : 
It is their worldly violation mads me. 
If my poor name be ever in sacred mouths, 
I pray thee say so ; and add, I am a man 
Xot haj)py quite perhaps, more than some others 
Of mankind's fallen race, in my home's Eve ; 
Who, with some humours, yet is good as fair, 
.And only makes me unhappy in the excess 
Of my desire to make herself most blessed. 
My conscience thus discharged, look'ye, fair sir, — 
A man of a less trusting sort — 

E7ifer a Servant. 

Servant. My lady, sir, 

Being worse since her last seizure at day-break. 



42 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act in. 

The Nurse would fain send in the neighbourhood 
For— 

Agolanti. Bid her do so. Tell her to send instantly 
For whom she pleases. {EAt Servant.) You will pardon me; — 
This troubled house of mine — At the good spectacle, 
I shall behold you. 

Colonna. We take anxious leave, sir, 

Wishing you all good speed with the sweet lady. 
But something we had forgotten, in our zeal 
To tell our own poor story, tho' we came 
Partly to give it you, — a letter, sir, 
From a most dear and excellent friend of ours; 
Who, we dare say it, for reasons which your delicacy 
Will be glad, too, to turn to like fair grace 
Of liberal trust and gentle interpretation, 
Wishes your house all good and quiet fame. 
""Tis something very special that he writes of, 
So he assures us, and of instant urgency ; 
But what we know not. \_Exeu'nt. 

Agolanti (reads). " If Signer Agolanti values his wife's 
peace, and life, he will meet the writer of this letter instantly ; 
who will wait for him, an hour from the receipt of it, in the 
wood near his gate, by the road-side leading to Cortona. 

" Antonio Rondinelli."" 
'Tis as I fear'd. He knows them, as I thought. 
And well ? Is it a league ? Conspiracy.-^ 
And face to face too ! He ! This beats all boldness. 



sckm; II. j A LEGEND'OF FLORENCE. 43 

'vSdeatb, must my time be his too ! What strange matter 

Can give him right of speech ! '" Her life ! ' Who seeks iti* 

What bloody jnggl«-' i^^ to beset me now ? 

I'll meet thee, Antonio; anil before we part, 

Strange mvsterv shall be phick'd from some one's heart. 

IPlxit. 



SCENE IL 

A Wood. HosmnEhhi discovered waifijit/. 

Rondiuelli. My bosom is so full, my heart wants air ; 
It fears even want of utterance ; fears the man, 
For very loathing ; fears his horrible right, 
His lawless claim of lawfulness ; and feels 
Shame at his poisonous want of shame and manhood. 
Yet she endures him ; she can smile to him, 
Would have him better. Oh, heavenly Ginevra ! 
Name, which to breathe puts pity in the air, 
I know that to deserve to be thy friend 
Should be to bhow all proofs of gentlest right. 
Oh be the spirit of thine hand on mine ; — 
Hang by me, like a light, a face, an angel. 
To whom I turn for privilege of blest patience, 
Letting me call thee my soul's wife ! 

He comes. 



Jt A LEGEND OF 't'LORENCE. [act iii. 

Enter Agolanti. 

r 

Agolanti. I recognise the Signer Rondinelli ; 
And in him, if I err not, the inditer 
Of a strange letter. — He would speak with nie? 

llondinelli. Pardon me. I am sensible that I trespass 
On many delicacies, which at first confuse me. 
Be pleased to look upon them all as summ'd 
In this acknowledgment, and as permitted me 
To hold acquitted in your coming hither. 
I would fain speak all calmly and christianly. 

/{(jQlanti. You spoke of my wife's life. 'Tvvas that that 
brought me. 

llondinelli. Many speak of it. 

Arjolanti. To what end ? 

Rondinelli. 1'bey doidit 

If you are aware on wliat a delicate thread 
It hangs. 

Afjolojiti. Mean you of health .'' 

llondinclU. I do. 

Agolanti. • 'Twere strange, 

If I knew not the substance of the tenure. 
Seeing it daily. 

Rondinelli. A daily sight — pardon me — 
May, on that very account, be but a dull one. — 
I pray you, do not think I use plain words 



scBNR IV,] A LEGFND OF FLORENCE. 45 

From wish to offi-iul : I have l)iit oiio ohjcct— such 
As all must have, who know, or ever have known, 
The lady, — you above all others. 

AyolantL Trulv, sir, 

You, and these knowintr friends of yours, or hers. 
Whom I know not, might leave the |)roverb alone, 
Which says that a fool knows better what occur> 
In his own house, than a wise man docs in another'-^. 
Good Signor Antonio, 1 endure you 
Out of a sort of pity : you understand me; 
Perhaps not quite a just one. This same letter 
Is not the first of yours, that has intruded 
Into my walls. 

liomUnelli. We understand each other 
In some things, Sigiior Agolanti, and well : 
In some things one of us is much mistaken ; 
But one thing we know perfectly, both of us, — 
The spotlessncss of her, concerninrj whom 
We speak, with conscious souls, thus face to fape. — 
Signor Agolanti, I humbly beg of you, 
Well nigh with tears, which you may pity, and wclco^iie, 
So you deny tliem not, thai it will please you 
To recollect, that the best dailv eyes, 
The wisest and the kindest, made secure 
By custom and gradation, may see not 
In the fine dreadful fadinji" of a face 
^Vhat others see. 



40 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [\it hi. 

Afjolanti, Signor Antonio, — 

When others allow others to rule their houses, 
To dictate commonplaces, and to substitute 
For long- experience and uiicanting love 
Their meddling self-sufficiency, their envious 
Wish to find fault, and most impertinent finding it, 
When this is the custom and the fashion, then, 
And not till then, will I throw open my doors 
To all my kind good masters of fair Florence, 
To come and know more in my house than I do ; 
To see more, hear more, have a more inward taste 
Of whatsoever is sweet and sacred in it. 
And then vouchsafe me their opinions: order me 
About, like some new household animal 
Caird servant-husband, they being husband-gods, 
Yet condescending to all collateral offices 
Of gossip, eaves-dropper, consulting-doctor, 
Beggarly paymaster of discarded page. 
Themselves discarded suitor. 

Rondinelli. (^Aside.) Help me, angel, 

Against a pride, that, seeing thee, is nothing. — 
You know^ full well, Francesco Agolanti, 
That though a suitor fin" the prize you won 
(Oh ! what a prize ! and what a winning ! enough 
Surely to make you bear with him that lost) 
Discarded I could not he, )iever, alas ! 
Having found acceptation. My acquaintance 



A LEOEND OF FI.ORENrE. 4," 

Not long prcccck'd yours ; and was tcui brief 

To let my love win on her filial eves. 

Before your own came beaming with that wealth. 

Which, with all other shows of good and prosperous. 

Her parents justly thought her due. For writing to h(M 

Since, with whatever innocence (as you know) 

And for any opinions of yourself 

In which I may have wrong'd you, I am desirous 

To hold my own will in a constant state 

Of pardon-begging and self-sacrifice, 

And will engage never to trouble more 

Your blessed doors (for such I'll hope they will be) 

One thing provided. — Sir, it is, 

That in consideration of your possessing 

A treasure, which all men will think and speak of 

(The more to the just pride of him that owns it), 

You will be pleased to show, even ostentatiously, 

What more than care, at this supposed sad juncture, 

You take of it : will call in learned eyes 

To judge of what your own too happy ones 

May slide o'er too securely ; will thus revenge 

Your wrong on ill mouths, by refuting them : 

And secure kindlier ones fron) the misfortune 

Of being uncharitable towards yourself. 

Afjolanti. I will not suffer, more than other men, 
That wrong should be assumed of me, and bend me 
To what it pleases. \>'hat I know. I know ; 



48 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act hi. 

What in that knowledge have done, sh;dl still do. 
The more you speak, the greater is the insult 
To one that asks not your advice, nor needs it ; 
Nor am I to be trick'd into submission 
To a pedantic and o'erweening insolence, 
Because it treats me like a child, with gross 
Self-reconciling needs and sugary fulsomeness. 
Go back to the world you speak of, you yourself. 
True infant ; and learn better from its own school. 
You tire me. 

RondinelU. Stay; my last words must be heard, — 
In nothing then will there be any difference 
From what the world now see ? 

Agolcmti. ' In nothing, fool ! — 

Why should there ? Am I a painter's posture-figure ? 
A glove to be made to fit? a public humour ? 
To hear you is preposterous ; not to trample you 
A favour, which I know not why I show. 

Rond'aiclli. I'll tell you. 

'Tis because you, with cowardly tyranny. 
Presume on the blessM shape that stands between us ; 
Ay, with an impudence of your own, immeasurable. 
Skulk at an angel's skirts. 

A(jolanti. [ laugh at you. 

And let me tell you at parting, that the way 
To serve a lady best, and have her fa\ilts 
Lightliest admonishM by her lawful helper. 



SCENE II.] A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. -^'J 

Is not to thrust a lawless vanity 
""rwixt him and his vex\l love. 

lioudinel/i. Utter that word 
No second time. Blaspheme not its religion. 
And mark mc, once for all. I know you proud. 
Rich, sanguine during passion, sullen after it, 
Turchasing shows of mutual respect, 
With bows as low, as their recoil is lofty ; 
And thinking that the world and you, being each 
No better than each other, may thus ever, 
In smooth accommodation of absurdity, 
^love prosperous to your graves. But also I know you 
Misgiving amidst all of it; more violent 
Than bold, more superstitious ev''n than formal; 
More propp\l up by the public breath, than vital 
In very self-conceit. Now mark me 

Agolanti. A beggar 

Mad with detection, barking like his cur ! 

IlondindU. Mark me, impostor. Let that saint be 
Avorse 
By one hair's-breadth of sickness, and you take 
No step to show that you would have prevented it. 
And everv soul in Florence, from the beggar 
Up to the princely sacredness now coming. 
Shall be loud on you, and loathe you. Boys shall follow 

you, 
Plucking your shuddering skirts ; women forego, 

£ 



50 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act in. 

For woman's sake, their bashfulncss, and speak 
Words at you, as you pass ; old friends not know you ; 
Enemies meet you, friend-like ; and when, for shame, 
You shut yourself in-doors, and take to your bed. 
And die of this world by day, and the next by night, 
The nurse, that makes a penny of your pillow, 
And would desire you gone, but your groans pay her, 
Shall turn from the last agony in your throat, 
And count her wages ! 

Ayolantl. Death in thine own throat. 

Bondindli Tempt me not. 

Agolanfi. Coward ! 

llondineUi. All you saints bear witness ! 

ICries of^i Agolanti ! Signor Agolanti ! " 



Enter Servants in disorde7\ 

First Servant. My lady, sir. 

Agolanti What of her ? 

Servant. Sir, she is dead. 

Agolanti. Thou say'st what cannot he. A hundred 
times 
Tve seen her worse than she is now. 

Rondinelli, Oh horror ! 

To hear such words, knowing the end !— Oh dreadful ! 
But is it true, good fellow ? Thou art a man, 
A nd hast moist eyes. Say that they served thee dimly. 



s"NK u.J A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. 51 

Serrauf. Hark, sir. 

[ Tlie jxissing-hell is hrnnf. Tlici/ all take off their 
caps, except Agolanti, 
Rumlinelli. Slje's gone ; and I am alone. Karlirh blank ; 
Misery certain. — The cause, alas ! the cause ! 

[Passionatcli/ to Agolanti. 
Uncover thee, irreverent infamy ! 

Agolanti {uncoverint/). Infamy thou, to treat thus 
ruffianly 
A iraite-struck sorrow. 

liondineUi. Oh God ! to hear him talk ! 

To hear him talk, and know that he has slain her ! 
Bear witness, yon — you of his luiusehold — you. 
That knew him best, antl what a poison ho was — 
He has slain her. — ^^ hat you all fear'd would be, has come. 
And the mild thread that held her heart, is broken. 

.If/olanti {goiuf/ off irith the Servants). Pietro, I say, and 
Giotto ! away ! away ! 

{_Exit irith Servants. 

Rondinelli. Ay, ny ; to justice with him! Whither with 

^w<' ? [ Exeunt opposite. 



KXn OK ACT THK THIRn. 



E 2 



52 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act iv. 



ACT IV. 

SCENE I. 

A Room in the House of Da Riva. Colonna, Olimpia, 
and Diana, discovered, thejirst looking out of a window. 
A funeral-hell is tolling at intervals. 



Colonna. By the moving of the crowd the funeral comes. 
No ; — yet I thought I heard the Choristers. 

Diana. You did. Hark now — 

[A faint sound of Choristers. 
And now like some sweet sigh 
Of heaven and earth it pauses. — You look sadder, 
Signor Colonna, than you tliought you should, 
Within this festal week. 

Colonna. 'Faith, gentle lady, 
I'd rather hear upon a winter's night, 
A dozen trumpets of the enemy 

Blow 'gainst my nestled cheek, than tins poor weakness, 
Which comes to pass us, standing idly thus. 
Swallowing the lumpish sorrow in one's throat, 
'Twixt rage and pity. 



SCENE I.] A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. .'.3 

Olitnjjiu. I have noted oft. 
That eyes, that have kept dry their cups of tears, 
The moment they were touched by music's fingers, 
Trembled, brimtuU, 

Diana. It is the meeting, love. 

Of beauty so divine, with earth so weak. 
We swell within us with inunortal thoufihts, 
Antl then take pity on the feeble liddle, 
That lies thus cold, and thus rebuked in death. 

{Choristers resume, and continue duriny the 
dialof/ue. 

Colonna. L heard as I came in, one who has seen her 
Laid on the bier, say that she looks most heavenly. 

Diana. I saw her lately, as you'll see her now, 
Lying but newly dead, her blind sweet looks 
Border'd with lilies, wiiich her pretty maiden, 
'Twixt tears and kisses, put about her hair, 
To show her spotless life, and that wrong man 
Dared not forbid, for very piteous truth ; 
And as she lay thus, not more unresisting 
Than all her life. I pitied even him, 
To think, that let him weep, or ask her pardon 
Never so much, she could not answer more. 

Colonna. They turn the corner now, and now they pass. 
{The Choristers .suddenli/ become loud, and are 
heard passiny uwhrneath the icindotr. After 
thrj/ hair passed, Colons A resumes. 



yl A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act iv. 

Farewell, sweet soul ! Death and thy patient life 
Weie so well matched, I scarce can think thee alter'd. 

Enter Da Riva. 
How now, Da Riva? Found you not Antonio, 
That thus you look amazed? What is't? No harm 
To his poor self ? 

Da Riva. None, none ; to him, or any ; 
None that shall be; monstrous, and strange, and horrible, 
As ignorance of the peril might have made it. 

Colonna, \ 

Olimpia, J- To whom? 
and Diana.) 

Da Riva. Prepare to hear, and to endure, 
A chance, the very hope of which is awful, 
It raises up a vision with a look 
So mixed of life and death. 

Colonna, ^ 

Olimpia, > What is it ? 
and Diana.) 

Da Riva. You, 
Colonna, will to Antonio instantly, 
To keep him ignorant till all be known : 
You, my sweet friends, with me, to seek some nest 
Of balm and comfort, close upon the spot, 
Against a chance — Think me not mad, but hearken. 

Diana. He has murdered her ! He thought to murder 
her, 



scuNK r.] A LEGEND OF FF.ORENCE. 55 

Ami Ill's hand t'ail'xl. 

OUnipuu Poison ! Oh Heavens ! 

Colnnna. Pray, cahn ihcni. 

Da Riva. Scarcely ten minutes had I left you here, 
When Fiordilisa, paler than her mistress. 
Found me with (Tiulio i)y Antoni()"'s door. 

Colontm. Von have not seen him then ? 

Da Riva. Yes ; — the poor maiden 
Told us of an appearance she had noted 
All night about the lips of the dear lady^ 
Which made her call to mind stories, to<^) true. 
Of horrors in the dreadful pestilence, 
Of hasty shrouds, sleeps found to have been sleeps only, 
And gentle creatures grown so desjx?rate. 
That they had raised their hands against their lives 
For wakinj: to the sense of life itself. 

OVimpid. Where now they bear her I 

Diana. Not unknown. 

Cohnna. Be trancjuil, 

\\'atch has been set ? 

Da Riva. And will look close till morn. 
Giulio, from time to time, 'twixt them and us. 
Will fly with news; and meantime sweep we all 
Each to our tasks, and bless the hope that sets them. 
If true, oh think where but in sleep she lies : 
If vain, she still will bless us from the skies. 

\_Exe.Hnt. 



56 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act iv. 



SCENE II. 

A Cemetery, with an open Vault in the back-i/round, and 
a dim noise of revelry, as from some house in the 
neiyhhonrhood. 

Enter Giulio. 
Gitdio. Wliatdevilishness, and outrage to the dead, 
About whose homes the rudest-footed churl 
Treads softly, e'en by day. The noble hearts 
I serve, have been so generous, that these drunkards 
Count it but as a folly worth their cheating, 
And have shut up their promised vigilance 
Within the roaring wine-house. {Noise again.) Only one 
Remains within the gate, who let me in, 
Staring 'twixt sleep and glass-eyed sottishness. 
Yet sec — the vault has been left open, wide 
As fear could wish. What, if ! — Methinks the man 
Look\l at me yonder; — ^yes, and is still looking ; — {Noise 

again) 
And now the noise allures him, and he turns. 
Hark ! Not a sound, but when the riot swells! 
So still all else, that I can hear the grass 
Whisper, as in lament, through its lorn hair. 
ril in, and look. — AViiat if a hope almost 



SCENE II ] A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. 57 

As dreadful, for the nionient, as worst fear, 

Show to my heart its selfish cowardice. 

And I should see her, not still laid, but risen ! 

Sitting perhaps, with eyes encountering mine, 

And muttering lips ! I'll take thy hurden, horror, 

Uj3on me, for love's sake and gratitude's ; 

Oh will I, Heaven ! e'en should my knees melt under me. 

And every pore turn to a swoon of water. 

\_He enters the l^ault, and returns. 
Gone ! Borne away ? or of her own self gone? 
Gone, without friend to help, or to pursue ! 
And wiilther ? or with help itself how dreadful ! 
What hands for hlied innocence in the night l 
Perhaps that very house — What ho, there ! — you ! 

^77<e ffate of the Cemetery is loudly shut. 
He shuts the gate ! he shuts, and is himself 
Gone ! and forbid it, Heaven, not for my sake, 
But hers, but hers, left me, perhaps on purpose. 
To call in vain, and 'gainst the bolts grow mad ! 
Pardon, sweet Heavens ! I'll not be mad, for fear 
Of madness, but be calm. \\ hat ho, there! Stay ! 
Come back, for Heaven's sweet sake, and ope the doors, 

\_Ej:it. 



58 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. Lact iv. 



SCENE III. 

A Room in Agolanti's House in Florence. Agolanti 
discovered looking ont of an open tcindoiv, and then quit- 
ting it. Sound of lutes in the distance. 

Agolanti. That sound of homeward lutes, wliicli I arose 
Out of my restless bed, to feel companion'd with, 
For some few passing moments, was the last 
To-night in Florence. Not a footstep more 
Touches the sleeping streets ; that now seem witch'd 
With the same fears that walk around me still, 
Ready to greet me with unbearable eyes. 
All air seems whispering of me ; and things visible 
Take meaning in their shapes, not safe to know. 
Oh that a masculine and religious soul 
Should be thus feeble! And why ? what should I fear ? 
My name has worship still ; and still will have it, 
If honourable wealth and sacred friends 
Can shield it from mad envy ; and if I err'd 
Sometimes as husband, she I loved err'd more, 
"With s])irit so swelling as outstrain'd her life. 
Oh, every man's infirmities, more or less, 
Mix with his love; and they who in excess 
Feel not all passions, felt not love like mine. 



SCENE III.] A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. r.O 

Nor knew what rtorUls, when my de.>{)air seeni'tl angriest, 

I could have given for one, for but one look 

Of sure and heartfelt pity in her eves. 

But she is gone; and for whate'er I did 

Not well, I have humbled nie to the god of power ; 

And given the shrine, near which her dust is laid. 

New glorious beams of paintings and of gold, 

Doubling its heaven to the white angelical tapers ; 

For which, they say, the sovereign Holiness 

IlimsL'If will thank me. And yet,— thus, even thus, 

I feel, — a shudderer at the very silence. 

Which seems preparing me some angriness. 

I'll close the window ; anil rouse Ippolito 

To read to me in some religious book. 

\_Goinfj toicanh the icindoic, he stojj.s and listms. 
What was it .'' a step ? a voice ? 

Ginevra (is heard outsidf). Agolanti ! 
Francesco Agolanti ! husband ! 

Ayolanti (crossin// himself and maeiiuj towards the 
icindoir). It draws me, 
In horror, to look on it. — Uh God I —I see it ! 
There is — somethin«i there -standinj; in the moonli«;ht. 

Ginevra. Come forth, and help me in — Oh help me in ! 

Agolanti. It speaks ! [eery luitdly.) I cannot bear the 
dreailfulness ! 
The horror's in my throat, my hair, my brain I 
Detestable tiling ! witch! mockery of the blessed ! 



60 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act iv. 

Hide thee ! Be nothing ! Come heaven and earth betwixt us! 
\_He closes the shutters in a frenzy^ and then rushes apart 
Oh God ! u Httle Hfe; — a Httle reason; — 
Till 1 reach the arms of the living. — Ippolito ! 
Toiiio ! Giuseppe ! Lights ! Wake Father Angelo ! 

\_He stafjyers out. 



SCENE IV. 

A retired corner in Florence^ in Jrvnt oj^ Ron dh^ellis House, 
ivith Garden-wall and Trees. Rondinelli out oj 
doors-, miisiiig. 

Bondinelli. A gentle night, clothed with the moon and 
silence. — 
Blessed be God, who lets us see the stars ; 
Who puts no black and sightless gulf between 
Tliose golden gazers out of immensity, 
And mortal eyes, yearning with hope and love ! — 
She's now a blessed spirit beyond those lights, 
With happy eternal cheek. And yet, methinks, 
Serious as well as sweet is bliss in heaven, 
And permits pity for those that are left mourning. 
Gentle is greatest and habitual nature ! 
Gentle the starry space ! gentle the air ! 
Gentle the softly ever-moving trees ! 



scrxE iv.] A LEOEND OF FLORENCE. 61 

Gentle time past and future ! hotli asleej», 

While the qiiiek present i> lt)iKl hv (lavlii:;ht only. 

And gently I come to nature, to he worthy 

Of comfort and of her, and nn'x myself 

A\ itli the everlasting mildness in which she lives. — 

Sweetest and hest ! my couch a widower seems, 

Altho' it knew thee not ; and I came forth 

To join thee as I could ; for thou and I 

Are thus unhoused alike, and in no home. 

The wide earth holds us hoth. 

GiNF.yuA rnfn's, ami linlfs apart, Innking at him. 

Ginevra. Antonio I 

MandindU. Oh earth and heaven ! What art thou? 

Ginevra. Fear not to look on me, Antonio! 
I am Ginevra — buried, hut not dead. 
And have got forth and none will let me in. 
Even my mother is frighteii'd at my voice, 
And I have wander'd to thy gentle doors. 
Have pity on me, good Antonio, ; 

And take me from the dreadful streets at night. 

RondinelU. Oh Heaven ! Oh all things terrible and 
beautiful ! 
Art thou not angel, showing me some dread sight 
Of trial and reproof? Or art thou indeed 
Still living, and may that hand be touched with mine? 

\_Shc has held out her hand to him. 



G-2 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act iv. 

Crhipvra. Clasp it, and help me towards thy door ; for 
wonder 
And fear, and that long deadly swoon, have made 
]\Ie too a terror to myself, and scarcely 
I know how I stand thus. 

liondindli {moving sloidy^ hut eagerly, and breathless towards 
her). Infold us, air I 
Infold us, night and time, if it be vision ! 
If not — if not — 

[He touches her hand, and clasps her to his heart. 
It is Ginevra's self, 
And in Antonio''s arms !— She faints ! Oh sweetest ! 
Oh cheek, whose tears have been mth mine — She'll die i — 
She'll die, and I shall have kill'd her ! 

Ginevra {sliding doirn on her knees). Strength has risen 
o'er me from the depths of weakness. 
Oh Sigiior Rondinelli ! Oh good Antonio, 
Be all I think thee, and think not ill of me, 
Nor let me pass thy threshold, having a fear 
Of the world's speech, to stain a spotless misery. 

Rondinelli. Oh rise; and when I think that thou canst 
stand 
Unhelp'd of these most glad but reverent arms, 
Aloof will 1 wait from thee, as far apart 
As now I closely grasp'd thee. I was mad, 
And am, with joy, to find thee alive, and near me ; 
But, oh blest creature ! Oh lady ! Antonio's angel ! 



scKNK IV.] A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. (53 

Say l)iit tho word — do — aiul I love theu so, 
That after tlioii hast lasted f(M)d and wine. 
Myself will bear thee to thy house, thy husband, 
Laying a heuv'n on his repentant heart. 

Ginevra, Never. Tliegrave itself has been between us ; 
Hie hand of heaven has parted us, acknowledged 
By his own driving me from his shrieking doors: 
And none but thy door, and a convent's now, 
To which thy honourable haste will guide me, 
Shall open to me in this world again. 
Shelter me till the morn. Thou hast a mother ? 

Rondinrlli. Blessed he Heiv'n, ( have; — a rifrht t^xni 
UKJlher — 
Gentle, and strong, anil pious. JShc will be yours, 
So long as our p(xjr walls boast of inclosing you, 
And instantly. Vou scarcely shall have set 
Vour f(H>t in the house, but with religious joy, 
She will arise, and take you to her bed, 
And make a child of you, lady, till you slee[). 

Ginevra. Blessed be Ileav'n indeed. I can walk strangely. 

[^Exeunt. 



END OK ACT TMI, FOfKlll. 



64 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act v. 



ACT V. 

SCENE I. 
A Room in the House of Ron'dinelli, who enters. 



Itondinelli. Five blessed days, and not a soul but we 
Knows what this house in its rich bosom holds. 
The man whom dear Diana bribed to secrecy 
For our sakes, is now secnet for his own ; 
And here, our guest is taken for a kinswoman, 
P'led from a wealthy but a hated suitor, 
Out of no hatred, haply, to myself; 
For which, as well as for her own sweet sake, 
The servants love her, and will keep her close. 
She holds my mother's hand, and loves her eyes; — 
And yester evening she twice spake my name. 
Meaning another's. Hence am I most proud, 
Hence potent; hence, such bliss it is to love 
With smallest thought of being loved again, 
That though I know not how this heav'n on earth 
Can change to one still hcavenlier, nor less holy, 



SCENE I.] A LEGEND OF FLORENLi:. 65 

I am caught up, like saints in ecstacics, 

Above the ground ; — tread air ; — see not the streets 

Through which I pass, for swiftness of dehght, 

And hugging to my secret heart one bosom. 

I hve, as though the earth held but two faces, 

And mine per|X'tually look'd on liers. 

Enter GiuLio. 

How now, sweet GiuHo? why so hush'd ? our visitor 
No longer sleeps by day. (Gillio kisses his hand) 

And why this style 
Of pretty reverence and zeal, as though 
You came betwixt myself and some new trouble ? 

Giulio. Nay, sir. 

Rondinclli. You smile, to reassure me. Well ; 

Yet you breathe hard, and have been flying hither, 
Your pretty plumage beaten with the wind. 
And look as haggard pale, as when you brought 
The daybreak to us from that cage, and found 
Safe-housed our bird of paradise. \\'hat is it ? 

Giulio. I came, that Marco might not come. I thought, 
Dear lord and master, Giulio's lips had best 
Bring news of one whose face the servants know not, 
Now in the hall, asking to speak with you. 

Uondineli. What face? — Who is it? 

Giulio. He saw me, and started ; 

And yet not angrily. 

F 



66 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act v. 

RondlnelU. Who saw ? No kinsman 

Of my dear motlier's guest ? 

Giulio. No, sir ; no kinsman. 

Rondinelli. No officer from the court, or clergy ? 

Giulio, Neither. 

llondinelli. Our mutual friends are all, this instant, 
with us, 
Here, in the house. They, if they saw this man — 
Say — would they know him ? 

Giulio. Surely, sir ; none better. 

Or with less willingness ; — though five short days 
Have bow'd him down, as with a score of years ; 
His eye that was so proud, now seems but stretch"'d 
With secret haste and sore anxiety ; 
And what he speaks, he seems yet not to think of. 

Rondinelli. Come, let us speak his name, lest a mad 
chance 
That 'tis not he, make me repent the cowardice. 
'Tis he ? the man ? 

Giulio. The Signor Agolanti. 

Rondinelli (aside). Life is struck black. Yet not so, 
sweetest face. 
Not so. He shall not hurt a hair of thy head, 
While the earth holds us. — Guess you what he knows? 

Giulio. All. 

Rondinelli. How ? 

Giulio. I saw, coming from out his door, 



scENK i] A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. 67 

The sexton's boy, his lowcrinnr front in smiles 

For some triumphant craft ; and not long afterwards 

Came he, half staggering, shrouding with his cap 

His haggard eyes. He bent his steps this way. 

And I ttx)k wings before him, to give Marco 

Speech for him should lie come, and be his harbinger, 

Sir, with yourself. 

BomUnelU. Best boy! my friend, and brother! 
But, Giulio, say you not a word elsewhere. 
You understand me ? 

Giulio. Oh sir,— yes. 

Itondinelli, Bid Marco 

Conduct him hither. 

Giulio. Geri and myself 

May remain then ? Not within hearing, sir, 
But within cal ? 

Rondinelli. Good lad ! ])ut there's no need. 

See you, that not another eye in the house 
Behold him coming. — Let him be shown up. 

[i^j-?7 Giulio ; and after a while, en^er Agolanti, 
looking round the room. They pause a little^ and 
regard one another. 

Agolanti. You know why I am here.'' 

Itondinelli. , I do. 

Agolanti. Five days — 

(Aside) Rouse thee, Agolanti. Never shook'st thou yet 

f2 



68 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act v. 

At living face: — what qiiaiFd thee, coming hither? 

{To RoNDiNELLi.) Five days, and nothing told a husband? 

Rondinelli. Nothing ! 

Agolanti. Nothing that he deem'd mortal. — But with 
whom 
Am I thus speaking? With one honourable? 
One who though lawless in his wish, was held 
Scrupulous in action ? of nice thought for others ? 

Rondinelli. The angel who came hither, is angel still. 

Agolanti. Signor Rondinelli, respect this grief. 
It respects thee, if thou art still the man 
I thought thee once. A graver faith than most, 
And love most loving, if its truth were known. 
Did, from excess of both — But what is past, 
Is past; — a gentleman is before me ; — his foe. 
Or one he deemM such, at a disadvantage ; 
Illness, on all sides, gone ;— I am here; am ready 
To beg her pardon for that sore mistake, 
Which for its very madness, friends, methinks, 
Might haste to pardon ; — and so take her home. 

Rondindli. Your words are gentle, Signor Agolanti : — 
I thank you ; and would to Heaven, what must be borne. 
Were always borne so well. The thing you speak of, 
Seems easy, but in truth is not so. 

Agolanti. How ? 

Rondinelli. A bar has risen. 

Agolanti. A bar ! 



9CENI I.] A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. 60 

UondinrUi. Which, to speak hrieflv, 

Has rcndL-rVl it not possible. 

Affolauti. Not possible ! 

{Aside.) He said that she was " angel still."— ( 7b Ron- 

DiSELLi.) She still 
Is livins: .'' 

RondimUL Yes. 

Agolanti. And here? 

RondineUi. She is so. 

Agolanti. Able 

To move ? recover'd .'' 

RondineUi. She is still but weak, 

Yet hourly gaining strength, 

Agolanti. What hinders then — 

You do not speak. Tell me, what strange prevention, 
What inconceivable " bar,"' I think, you call'd it — 

Rondimlli. Signor Francesco, shall distress you 

greatly ; 
And, for all sakes, as you will see too wx*ll. 
Would to God any other man on earth 
Had to make this disclosure. 

Agolanti. In God's name then. 

What is it ? 

Rnndinelli. Her own consent would be required. 

Agolanti. Well? 

RondineUi. And 'twould not be given. — She '11 not return. 

Agolanti. Will not return!— How "not return?" She's 
well ? 



70 ^ A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act v. 

She's better— perhaps would wait some days— yes, yes — 
Well, sir— when will she ? I'll see her instantly. 
And then we'll settle when. But you can tell me 
At once. — Be pleased to say, sir, when you think 
She'll come. 

llondinelli. 'Tis her own terrible word I speak, sir, 
The night when she stood houseless at my door, 
Dead to the past, alive to virtue only. 
And honourable grief. She will return 
Never. 

Acjolanti. Never return ! Ginevra Agolanti 
Never return ? not come to her own house ? 
Impossible ! — Witchcraft has been here ! Seduction ! 
Where is she ? Let me see her — instantly, sir ! 
Would you part man and wife .'' 

Rondinelli. Alas ! she holds them 

Parted already, not by me. 

Agolanti. A wife 

Has but one home, sir. 

Rondinelli. Sir, she thought so. 

Agolanti. Sir, fever and dchrium would not have 
made 
A friend unpardonable in my eyes 
For having mis-beheld me. 

Rondinelli. Surely, sir : — 

Yet I conceive there is a difference. 
But I am not the judge. 



SCENE I.] A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. 71 

Agolanti. You are, sir ; — I fear 

You arc ; — I fear you have made yourself the judge, sir. 
The criminal — the detainer. Why say nothing 
Of her being here? Why let me find it out 
From a gross boy, who has quarrell'd with his master. 
And makes my shame his profit ? Housed with thee too ! 

RondincUi Nay, in the melancholy convent housed, 
Soon as its doors, now hung with flowers for Rome, 
Be open to admit the appeals of sorrow ! 

Af/olanti. Appeals of lies and crimes. — And so my wounds 
Must be torn open afresh ! hidden from none ! 
All eyes must stare ujion me ! I demand 
To sec my wife ; — the lady Agolanti : — 
She is detained here. Horrible light begins 
To dawn ; there has been dreadful mockery — 
Conspiracy ! W^orse ! You have dishonoured her. 

Rondint-Ui. 'Tis false. — Be culm. Let both bi.- calm, 
nor startle 
Feminine ears with words. Wait in this room. 
Here, on the left, awhile ; — I'll bring herself 
To look ujKHi tiiy speech, if it so please her ; 
If not, ray mother, sir, — you have heard of her, — 
From w hom, so help me God, I never yet 
Beheld her separate. 

Ayulaiiti. I demand — 

RomlindU. This way. 

{^Exeunt. 



72 -^ A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act x. 



SCENE 11. 

Another Room. 



jEn^crRoNDiNELLi ; cmd to liim,from the opposite side,GiVLio 
with FiORDiLisA, ivho kisses his hand- 

Rondinelli, Sweet Fiordilisa, you attend your mistress 
Too closely. You grow pale. 

Fiordilisa. 'Twas Giulio's paleness, sir, 

Struck me with mine. 

Rondinelli. Fear not for him, or any one; 

You see me pale, yet see me smiling too : 
Now go, and with the like good flag advanced 
Of comfort beyond trouble, tell your lady 
I would entreat one word with her, alone. 

Fiordilisa. Pll think, sir, trouble cannot come to stay 
Within so quiet and so bless'd a house; 
And so I'll try to look. lExit Fiordilisa. 

Rondinelli {who has been writing something). And novv 
you, Giulio, 
Go tell the friends who come to greet her rise 
From the sick bed, what shade has followed them. 
I fear, from some deep whispering on the stairs 
I caught but now, as we were coming up, 
They heard us wrangling. Say, all's quiet now — 



SCENE II.] A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. 73 

'i'liey'll see me soon ; and give this to my mother. 

[Exit GiL'Lio with tlie paper ; aiid cuter Gi^Ev a a. 

My mother would have been before me, lady, 
To beg an audience for her son ; but you, 
Beins: still the final and sole arbitress 
Of a new question, come with sudden face; 
It might befit you also, for more reasons 
Than I may speak, to be its first sole hearer. 

Ginevra. What is it .' 

liondinclli. Nothing that need bring those eyes 

Out of the orbs of their sweet self-possession. 
Your thoughts may stay within their heaven, and hear it. 
'Twixt it and you, there is all heaven, and earth. 

Ginevra. IVIy story is known, ere I have reached the 
convent .'' 

Rondinelli. Even so. 

Ginevra. And somebody has come to claim me ? 
From liim ? 

RundinelU. Xot from him. 

Ginevra. From the church then .? No ! 

The state .? 

Rondinelli. I said not from him. He is shaken 
Far more than you should be, being what yon are, 
And all hearts loving you. 

Ginevra. Himself ! 

Rondinelli. 1 1 imself. — 



74 ~ A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act v. 

His hauglity neck yet stooping with that night, 
Which smote his hairs half grey. (She weeps.) 

Ginevra {aside). Alas ! — yet more 

Alas, that I should say it. — Not loud then ? 
Not angry ? 

Rondinelli. Only with your vows of refuge, 
And those that stand betwixt his will and power ; 
Else humble ; nay, in tears, and seeking pardon. 
{Aside.) She's wrung to the core ! — With grief is't? and 

what grief? 
Oh now, all riddles of the heart of love, 
When 'twould at once be generous, yet most mean ; 
All truth, yet craft ; a sacrifice, yet none ; 
Risk all in foppery of supposed desert. 
And then be ready in anguish to cry out 
At being believed, and thought the love it is, 
Martyr beyond all fires, renouncing heaven 
By very reason that none can so have earned it ;— 
Oh, if she pities him, and relents, and goes 
Back to tiiat house, let her yet weep for me ! 

Ginevra. When I said " Never"" to that word " return," 
He had not suffered thus; had not shown sorrow ; 
Was not bow'd down with a grey penitence. — 
Sir — I would say, kind host — most kind of men — 
My friend and my preserver — 

Rondinelli. Say no more, 

So you think well of me. 

Ginevra. I could say on, 



SCENE II.] A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. 75 

And twenty times as aiucli, so you would ilihik it 
Best, some day hence. — Speak not. — 

RomlinelU. Yes, honour bids nie; 

Honour, above all doubts, even of poor self, 
Whether to gain or lose ; — bids me say bravely, 
Be wise, while generous — Guard the best one''s peace, 
Whoe'er that is ; — her peace — the rights of goodness 
And vindication of the o'er-seeing heavens. 
High above all wrong hearts, — his, — or mine own. 

Ginevra. Although you call me " best," who am not so, 
ril w rite that last and noblest admonition 
Within the strongest memory of my soul, 
For all our sakes. The way to him. 

Rondinelli. One word. 

My mother — she — will see you again sometimes 
In your lot's bettering from its former state. 
As surely it must, your friends now knowing all, 
He sad for all. 

Ginevra. It is a help I look for. 

Rondinelli. Her son — forgive him that at this last 
moment 
He makes this first and only mention of him. 
Since you vouchsafed to rest your troubles with us, — 
His first — his last ; — may he too, as a friend, 
Hope — that a thought of him — a passing memory — 
Will sometimes mix with hers ? 

Ginevra. To tlrnk of her 

Will be to think of \h>iU. 



76- A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act v. 

llondinelli. Oh gentlest creature, 

If what I am about to say to thee 
OfFcnd thee in the least, count it such madness 
As innocence may pity ; and show no sign 
Of thy displeasure. Be but mute ; and sorrow 
With as mute thanks shall resume common words. 
But if, in thy late knowledge of Antonio, 
Thou hast seen nought, that under happier omens 
And with all righteous sanction, might have hinder\l thee 
From piecing out his nature's imperfections 
With thy sweet thoughts and hourly confidence, 
Reach him, oh reach, but for one blissful moment. 
And to make patience beautiful for ever. 
Thy most true woman"'s hand. 

\_She turns aside, and holds out to him her hand. 

My heart would drink it. 
\_He strains it icith both hands against his bosom. 
Do thy worst, memory, now. — We have known each other 
For twenty years in this. Your tears embolden you 
Even to look at me through their glittering veil, 
And set me some sweet miserable task : — 
I understand ; — yes, we'll go quietly, 
And you will let me keep this hand to the door ? 
We will walk thus. This little walk contains 
A life ! — Might you say one word to me at parting .^ 
Ginevra. Antonio ! — may your noble heart be happy. 

[^She clasps her hands., and speaks with constant 
vehemence, looking towards the audience. 



SCKNE II.] A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. 77 

Alas ! alas ! AVliy was that one word uttcrM 

To bear down the last patience of my soul, 

And make me cry aloiul to Heaven and misery ? 

1 am most miserable. I am a creature 

That now, for fifteen years, from childhood upwards, 

Till this hard moment, when the heavens forbid it, 

Have known not what it was to shed a tear, 

Which others met with theirs. Therefore mine eyes 

Did learn to hush themselves, antl young, grow dry. 

For my poor father knew not Low I loved him, 

Nor mother neither; and my severe husband 

Demanded love, not knowinfj lovinmiess. 

And now I cry out, wishing to be right. 

And being wrong ; and by the side of me 

Weeps the best heart, which ought not so to weep. 

And duty's self seems to turn round upon me. 

And mock me ; by whose law nevertheless 

Do I abide, and will I ; so pray Heaven 

To keep me in my wits, and teach me better. 

Turn me aside, sweet saints, and let me go. 

\_]Mi'ilc RoNDiNELLi, xclio kos fall 11 Oil his knee^ is 
stretchiiiQ his hands toicards her, the voices of 
Agolanti, Colon xa, and Da Kiva, are 
heard in violent quarrel*. 

• The following words of the quarrel are supposed to be uttered during 
the most violent confusion, and partly at once : — 

Agolanti. Who sent you here ? I never asked for you, 
Nor you — 

Colonna. And who for you? 



78 A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act v. 

Ginevra. His voice ! In anger too ? Did you not say 
That he was calm? Heart-stricken ? 

Rondinelli. He seem'd so. 

Ginevra. Perhaps is so, and they mistake his sorrow. 
There's mercy in it: for when danger comes, 
Duty cries loudest. Ay, and here's the friend 
Will not forsake me still, but bear me on, 
Right where the trumpet of the angel calls. 

\_He speeds her out. 



SCENE THE LAST. 



Another Room in Rondinelli's House. Agolanti and 
CoLONNA, in loud dispute, with their Sivords draivn, 
Da Riva interposing. 

Agolanti. I say — 

Colonna. What say you then ? 

Da Riva. Well, let him speak. 



Agolanti. Who \ 

Da Riva. Shut the door, 

I say. 

Colonna. Ay, who? What idiot, or what brute 
Could that be ? 

Agolanti. Heaven itself, whom you blaspheme. 
My voice shall reach it. 

Da Riva. Door ! the door ! he has open'd it 

On purpose ; see you not ? Follow him out. 



scKNK LAST.] A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. 79 

Agolanti. I say, that nothing ujH)n eartli, no insolence — 

Cohnna. House-coward ! 

Da liiva. Hush. 

Agolanti. Nor prudent friend — 

Colonnu. Still, coward. 

Affolanti. Nor talk of law, nor threats of church itself, 
Shall move my foot one jot from where I stand, 
Till she whom law, church, heaven and earth join'd to me, 
Shall join me again, and (juit this infamous house- 

Da liivu. To be twice slain in thine ? 

Cohnna. And twice thrust forth. 

If she return to fright thee ? 

Agolanti. I've seen the page here; 

Seen you ; guess at your women ; and shall know 
What hideous trap has stecp'd her soul in blushes, 
If she come not. 

Colonna {going to draw his sword). Blush in thy grave 
to say so. 

E7Uer RoNDiNELLi with GlSEv n a. fnlloiced hg his Mother^ 
Olimpi.\, Diana, Giulio, Fiokdiljsa, a/jr/ Servants. 

UondinelU. Forbear ! an angel comes. Take her, and 
pray 

Just Heaven to make her happy as thyself. 

Cohnna. Antonio, thou art damn'd to think it. Sec — 
Da Riva. He shrinks from her again in very fear, 

Which in his rage of vanity he'll avenge. 



80 -. A LEGEND OF FLOEIENCE. [act v, 

Agolanti. I hear not what they say, my poor Ginevra, 
Thinking of thee alone. — Come, bear thee up, 
And bravely, — as thou dost. We'll leave this place— 
This way — So — so — 

Da Riva. Antonio, will you let him ? 

Think of herself.— 'Tis none of yours, this business, 
But the whole earth's. 

Rondinelli. She will not have me stay him— 

I dare not — My own house too — See, she goes with him. 

Da Riva. Call in the neighbours— 

Colonna. Do, there's a right soul- 

Tell all. 

Agolanti. She's with me still ! She's mine! Who stays us. 

Olimpia and Diana. Ginevra ! sweetest friend ! 

Agolanti. Who triumphs now? Who laughs? Who 
mocks at pandars, 
Cowards, and shameless women ? 

Ginevra {bursting away from him). Loose mc, and 
hearken. 
Madness will crush my senses in, or speak : — 
The fire of the heavenward sense of my wrongs crowns me; 
The voice of the patience of a life cries out of me ; 
Every thing vi^arns me. 1 will not return. 
I claim the judgment of most holy church. 
T'll not go back to that unsacred house, 
Where heavenly ties restrain not hellish discord, 
Loveless, remorseless, never to be taught. 



>cENB LAST-l A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. 81 

I came tt) iiuvt with |)ity, and (iml sliainc ; 
Tears, and find triumph ; peace, and a loud sword. 
The convent walls — Bear nic to those — In secret. 
If it may be ; if not, as loudly as strife, — 
Drawing a wholesome tempest through the streets; 
And there, as close as bonded hands may cHng, 
111 hide, and pray for ever, to my grave. — 
Come you, and you, and you, and help me walk. 

Affohnti. Let her not stir. Nor dare to stir one soul, 
Lest in the madness of my wrongs I smite ye. 

Ginevra {to Agolanti). Look at me, and remember. 
Think how oft 
I've seen as sharp a point turn'd on thyself 
To fright me ; how, u|X)n a weaker breast ; 
And what a world of shames unmasculine 
These woman's cheeks would have to burn in tellinjj;. — 
The white wrath festers in his face, and then 
He's devilish. 

Rondiiielli. Will you let her fall? She swoons. 

[He catches her in his arms. 

Aynlanti {turtiiny to kill him). Where'er she goes, she 
shall not go^here. 

ColoniUL t^interceptiufj him irith his mm stcord). Dastard! 
Strike at a man so piniond f 

Agolanti. Die then for him. (Strikes at CohotiSA.^ 

Diana and Olimjtiu. I kip! Help! 

[7'he doors JJy open, enter Giui.lo foUoicrd hy 
Officer and Guard. 

G 



82 " A LEGEND OF FLORENCE. [act v. 

Giulio. 'Tis here ! Part them, for mercy ""s sake. 
Colonna. Die thou. {He pierces him.) 
Da Biva. He''s slain ! What hast thou done? 
Colonna. The deed 

Of his own will. One must have perish'd, sir {to Officer) ; 
One, my dear friend [to Da Riva.) Which was the 
corse to be ? 
Da Riva {looking at it). There's not a heart here, but 
will say, 'Twas he. 

\Car tain falls. 



THE END. 



i.o.vfiON : 
nriAUOunv and kvans, pkinieks, whitefbiabs. 



PR Lytton, Edward Georp^e rCarle 

A'^IB Lytton Bulwer-Ly-tton 
Al Riihelieu 

133^ 



PLEASE DO NOT REMOVE 
CARDS OR SLIPS FROM THIS POCKET 

UNIVERSITY OF TORONTO LIBRARY 



HipH;HM?llH|pHH;;;t!if;!ilJliii;H