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free me

Not that I fear, or reverence thee, thou tyrant! | By that bright glory thy great soul pursues,
But that my soul, conscious of whence it sprung, Call back the doom of death!
Sits unpolluted in its sacred temple,

Tan. Fair injured excellence,
And scorns to mingle with a thought so mean. Why dost thou kneel, and waste such precious
Tam. Oh, pity! that a greatness so divine

prayers, Should meet a fate so wretched, so unequal. As might even bribe the saints to partial justice, Thou, blind and wilful to the good that courts For one to goodness lost; who first undid thee, thee,

[To Bajuzet. Who still pursues and aggravates the wrong? With open-handed bounty Heaven pursues thee, Baj. By Alla! no, I will not wear a life And bids thee, (undeserving as thou art, Bought with such vile dishonour. Death shall And monstrous in thy crimes) be happy yet; Whilst thou, in fury, dost avert the blessing, At once from infamy, and thee, thou traitress! And art an evil genius to thyself,

Arp. No matter, though the whistling winds Baj. No-Thou! thou art my greatest curse

grow loud, on earth!

And the rude tempest roars, 'tis idle rage : Thou, who hast robbed me of my crown and Oh! mark it not; but let thy steady virtue glory,

Be constant to its teinper. Save his life, And now pursuest me to the verge of life, And save Arpasia from the sport of talkers. To spoil me of my honour. Thou! thou hypo- Think, how the busy, meddling world will toss crite!

Thy mnighty name about, in scurril mirth; That wearest a pageant outside shew of virtue, Shall brand thy vengeance, as a foul design, To cover the hot thoughts that glow within ! And make such monstrous legends of our lives, Thou rank adulterer !

As late posterity shall blush in reading. Tam. Oh, that thou wert

Tam. Oh, matchless virtue! Yes, I will obey; The lord of all those thousands, that lie breath- Though laggard in the race, admiring yet, less,

I will pursue the shining path thou tread'st. On yonder field of blood, that I again

Sultan, be safe! Reason resunjes her empire, Might hunt thee, in the face of death and dan

The guards release Bujacet. ger,

And I am cool again.--Ilere break we off, Through the tumultuous battle, and there force Lest farther speech should minister new race. thee,

Wisely from dangerous passsons I retreat, Vanquished and sinking underneath my arm, To keep a conquest which was hard to get : To own thou hast traduced me like a villain ! And, oh! 'tis time I should for flight prepare, Baj. Ha! Does it gall thee, Tartar? By re- A war more fatal seems to threaten there, venge,

And all my rebel-blood assists the fair : It joys me much to find thou feelst my fury. One moment more, and I too late shall find, Yes, I will echo to thee, thou adulterer! That love's the strongest power that lords it o'ct Thou dost prophane the name of king and sol

the mind. dier,

[Exit Tamerlane, followed by the guards. And like a ruffian bravo, cam'st with force Baj. To what new shame, what plague am I To violate the holy marriage-bed.

reserved! Tam. Wert thou not sheltered by thy abject Why did my stars refuse me to die warm, state,

While yet my regal state stood unimpeached, The captive of my sword, by my just anger, Nor knew the curse of having one above me? My breath, like thunder, should confound thy Then too (although by force 1 grasped the joy) pride,

My love was safe, nor felt the rack of doubt. And doom thee dead, this instant, with a word. Why hast thou forced this nauseous life upon me? Baj. It is false! my fate's above thee, and Is it to triumph o'er me?--But I will, thou darest not.

I will be free; I will forget thee all; Tam. Ha! dare not! Thou hast raised my The bitter and the sweet, the joy and pain, ponderous rage,

Death shall expunge at once, and ease my soul. And now it falls, to crush thee at a blow. Prophet, take notice, I disclaim thy Paradise, A guard there! Seize and drag him to his fate ! Thy fragrant bowers, and everlasting shades;

[Enter a guard, they seize Bajazet. Thou hast placed woman there, and all thy joys Tyrant, I will do a double justice on thee;

are tainted.

[Erit Bajazet. At once revenge myself, and all mankind.

Arp. A little longer yet, be strong, my heart; Baj. Well dost thou, ere thy violence and lust A little longer let the busy spirits Invade my bed, thus to begin with murder: Keep on their cheerful round. It will not be! Drown all thy fears in blood, and sin securely. Love, sorrow, and the sting of vile reproach, Tam. Away!

Succeeding one another in their course, Arp. [Kneeling.) Oh, stay! I charge thee, by Like drops of eating water on the marble, renown;

At length bave worn my boasted courage down :


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I will indulge the woman in my soul,

Inviting stands, to take the wretched in: And give a loose to tears and to impatience; No wars, no wrongs, no tyrants, no despair, Death is at last my due, and I will have it.- Disturb the quiet of a place so fair, And see, the poor Moneses cumes, to take But injured lovers find Elysium there. (E.reunt. One sad adieu, and then we part for ever.

Enter Bajazet, Omar, Haly, and the Dervise. Enter MONESES.

Baj. Now, by the glorious tomb that shrines Mon. Already am I onward of my way,

our prophet, Thy tuneful voice comes like a hollow sound By Mecca's sacred temple, here I swear, At distance, to my ears. My eyes grow heavy, Our daughter is thy bride and to that gift And all the glorious lights of Heaven look dim; Such wealth, such power, such honours will I add, 'Tis the last office they shall ever do me,

That monarchs shall with envy view thy state, To view thee once, and then to close and die. And own thou art a demni-god to them. Arp. Alas! how happy have we been, Mo- Thou hast given me what I wished, power of reneses !

venge, Ye gentle days, that once were ours, what joys And when a king rewards, 'tis ample retribution. Did every cheerful morning bring along !

Om. Twelve Tartar lords, each potent in his No fears, no jealousies, no angry parents,

tribe, That for unequal births, or fortunes frowned; Have sworn to own my cause, and draw their But love, that kindly joined our hearts, to bless thousands,

To-morrow, from the ungrateful Parthian's side: Made us a blessing too to all besides.

The day declining seeins to yield to night, Mon. Oh, cast not thy remembrance back, Ere little more than half her course be ended. Arpasia!

In an auspicious hour prepare for flight; 'Tis grief unutterable, 'tis distraction!

The leaders of the troops, through which we pass, But let this last of hours be peaceful sorrow ! Raised by my power, devoted to my service, Here let me kneel, and pay my latest vows. Shall make our passage secret and secure. Be witness, all ye saints, thou Heaven and Na- Der. Already, mighty sultan, art thon safe, ture,

Since, by yon passing torches' light, I guess,
Be witness of my truth, for you have known it! To his pavilion Tamerlane retires,
Be witness, that I never knew a pleasure, Attended by a train of waiting courtiers.
In all the world could offer, like Arpasia! All who remain within these tents are thine,
Be witness, that I lived but in Arpasia!

And hail thee as their lord.
And, oh, be witness, that her loss has killed me! Ha! the Italian prioce,
Arp. While thou art speaking, lite begins to With sad Moneses, are not yet gone forth.

Baj. Ha! with our queen and daughter !
And every tender accent chills like death.

Om. They are ours : Oh! let me haste then, yet, ere day declines I marked the slaves, who waited on Axalla; And the long night prevail, once more to tell | They, when the emperor past out, prest on, thee

And mingled with the crowd, nor missed their Wbat, and how dear, Moneses has been to me. What has he not been ?-All the names of love, He is your prisoner, sir: I go this moment, Brothers, or fathers, husbands, all are poor : To seize, and bring him to receive his dom. Moneses is myself; in my fond heart,

[Erit Omur, Even in my vital blood, he lives and reigns: Baj. Haste, Haly, follow, and secure the The last dear object of my parting soul

Will be Moneses; the last breath that lingers Him too I wish to keep within my power.
Within my panting breast, shall sigh Moneses.

[Erit Haly. Mon. It is enough! Now to thy rest, my soul ! Der. If my dread lord permit his slave to The world and thou have made an end at once.

speak, Arp. Fain would I still detain thee, hold thee I would advise to spare Axalla's life, still:

Till we are safe beyond the Parthian's power: Nor honour can forbid, that we together Him, as our pledge of safety, may we hold; Should share the few poor minutes that remain. And, could you gain him to assist your flight, I swear, methinks this sad society

It might import you much. Has somewhat pleasing in it.—Death's dark Baj. Thog counsellest well; shades

And though I hate him (for he is a Christian, Seem, as we journey on, to lose their horror; And to my mortal enemy devoted), At near approach the monsters, formed by fear, Yet, to secure my liberty and vengeance, Are vanished all, and leave the prospect clear;

I wish he now were ours. Amidst the gloniny vale, a pleasing scene,

Der. And see, they come! With flowers adorned, and never-facing green, Fortune repents; again she courts your side,



Vol. 1.

And, with this first fair offering of success, Oh! is it possible my eyes should tell
She wooes you to forget her crime of yesterday. So little of the fighting storm within?

Oh! turn thee from me, save me from thy beauEnter OMAR, with Axalla Prisoner, SELIMA

ties! following, weeping.

Falsehood and ruin all look lovely there. Ar. I will not call thee villain ; 'tis a name Oh! let my labouring soul yet struggle through Too holy for thy crime: to break thy faith, I will — I would resolve to die, and leave thee. And turn a rebel to so good a master,

Baj. Then let him die !-He trifles with my Is an ingratitude unmatched on earth.

favour. The first revolting angel's pride could only I have too long attended his resolves. Do more than thou hast done. Thou copiest Sel. Oh! stay a minute, yet a minute longer ! well,

[To Bajazet. And keepest the black original in view.

A minute is a little space in life.
Om. Do rage, and vainly call upon thy master There is a kind consenting in his eyes,
To save his minion. My revenge has caught And I shall win him to your royal will.

Oh, my Axalla ! seem but to consent.
And I will make thee curse that fond presump-

[To Ar. aside. tion,

Unkind and cruel, will you then do nothing ? That set thee on to rival me in aught.

I find I am not worth thy least of cares. Baj. Christian, I hold thy fate at my disposal ! Ar. Oh! labour not to hang dishonour on me! One only way remains to mercy open;

I could bear sickness, pain and poverty, Be partner of my flight and my revenge,

Those mortal evils worse than death, for thee. And thou art sate. Thy other choice is death. But this It has the force of fate against us, Om. What means the sultan?

And cannot be. Der. I conjure you, hold

Sel. See, see, sir, he relents! [To Bajazet. Your rival is devoted to destruction :

Already he inclines to own your cause,

(Aside to Omar. A little longer, and he is all yours. Nor would the sultan now defer his fate,

Baj. Then mark how far a father's fondness But for our common safety.—Listen further.


[Whispers. Till midnight I defer the death he merits, Ar. Then briefly thus. Death is the choice I And give him up 'till then to thy persuasion. make;

If by that time he meets my will, he lives; Since, next to Heaven, my master and my friend If not, thyself shalt own he dies with justice. Has interest in my life, and still shall claim it. Ar. 'Tis but to lengthen life upon the rack.

Baj. Then take thy wish-Call in our mutes! I am resolved already.
Sel. My father,

Sel. Oh! be still,
If yet you have not sworn to cast me off, Nor rashly urge a ruin on us both!
And turn me out to wander in misfortune; 'Tis but a moment more I have to save thee.
If yet my voice be gracious in your ears; Be kind, auspicious Alla, to my prayer !
If yet my duty and my love offend not,

More for my love, than for myself, I fear; Oh, call your sentence back, and save Axalla! Neglect mankind awhile, and make him all thy Baj. Rise, Selima ! The slave deserves to die,

care !

(Exeunt Aralla and Selima. Who'durst, with sullen pride, refuse my mercy : Baj. Moneses is that dog secured? Yet, for thy sake, once more I offer life.

Om. He is. Sel. Some angel whisper to my anxious soul, Baj. 'Tis well—My soul perceives returning What I shall do to save him.-Oh, Axalla!

greatness, Is it so easy to thee to forsake me?

As nature feels the spring. Lightly she bounds, Canst thou resolve, with all this cold indifference, And shakes dishonour, like a burden, from her; Never to see me more? To leave me here Once more imperial, awful, and herself. The miserable mourner of thy fate,

So, when of old, Jove from the Titans fled, Condemned to waste my widowed virgin youth, Ammon's rude front his radiant face belied, My tedious days and nights, in lonely weeping, And all the majesty of Heaven lay hid. And never know the voice of comfort more? At length, by fate, to power divine restored, Ar. Search not too deep the sorrows of my His thunder taught the world to know its Lord, breast :

The God grew terrible again, and was again Thou say'st I am indifferent and cold;




SCENE I.-Bajazet's Tent.

Baj. Still to deform thy gentle brow with

frowns, Arpasia.

And still to be perverse, it is a manner SURE 'tis a horror, more than darkness brings, Abhorrent from the softness of thy sex : That sits upon the night! Fate is abroad; Women, like summer storms, awhile are cloudy, Some ruling fiend hangs in the dusky air, Burst out in thunder, and impetuous showers; And scatters ruin, death, and wild distraction, But strait, the sun of beauty dawns abroad, O'er all the wretched race of man below. And all the fair horizon is serene. Not long ago, a troop of ghastly slaves

Arp. Then, to retrieve the honour of my sex, Rushed in, and forced Moneses from my sight; Here I disclaim that changing and inconstancy : Death hung so heavy on his drooping spirits, To thee I will be ever as am. That scarcely could he say—Farewell—for ever! Baj. Thou sayest I am a tyrant; think so still, And yet, methinks, some gentle spirit whispers, And let it warn thy prudence to lay hold Thy peace draws near, Arpasia, sigh no more! On the good hour of peace, that courts thee now. And see! the king of terrors is at hand;

Souls, formed like mine, brook being scorned bat His minister appears.


Be well advised, and profit by my patience; Enter BAJAZET and Haly.

It is a short-lived virtue.
Baj. (Aside to Haly.] The rest I leave

Arp. Turn thine eyes
To thy dispatch. For, oh! my faithful Haly, Back on the story of my woes, barbarian!
Another care has taken up thy master.

Thou that hast violated all respects
Spite of the high-wrought tempest in my soul, Due to my sex, and honour of my birth.
Spite of the pangs which jealousy has cost me, Thou brutal ravisher! that hast undone me,
This haughty woman reigns within my breast; Ruined my love! Can I have peace with thee?
In vain I strive to put her from my thoughts, Impossible ! First heaven and hell shall join ;
To drive her out with empire, and revenge. They only differ more.
Still she comes back, like a retiring tide,

Baj. I see, 'tis vain That ebbs awhile, but strait returns again, To court thy stubborn temper with endearments. And swells above the beach.

Resolve, this moment, to return my love, Ha. Why wears my lord

And be the willing partner of my fight, An anxious thought for what his power commands? Or, by the prophet's holy law, thou diest ! When, in a happy hour, you shall, ere long, Arp. And dost thou hope to fright me with the Have borne the empress from amidst your foes, phantom, She must be yours, be only and all yours. Death? 'Tis the greatest mercy thou canst give; Baj. On that depends my fear. "Yes, I must So frequent are the murders of thy reign, have her;

One day scarce passing by unmarked with blood, I own, I will not, cannot, go without her, That children, by long use, have learnt to scorn But such is the condition of our flight,

it. That should she not consent, 'twould hazard all Know, I disdain to aid thy treacherous purpose, To bear her hence by force. Thus I resolve And shouldst thou dare to force me, with my cries then,

I will call Heaven and earth to my assistance. By threats and prayers, by every way, to move Baj. Confusion! dost thou brave me? But her;

my wrath If all prevail not, force is left at last;

Shall find a passage to thy swelling heart, And I will set life, empire, on the venture, And rack thee worse than all the pains of death. To keep her mine-Be near to wait my will. That Grecian dog, the minion of thy wishes,

[Erit Haly. Shall be dragged forth, and butchered in thy sight; When last we parted, 'twas on angry terms;

Thou shalt behold him when his pangs are Let the remembrance die, or kindly think

terrible, That jealous rage is but a hasty flame,

Then, when he stares, and gasps, and struggles That blazes out, when love too fiercely burns.

strongly, Arp. For thee to wrong me, and for me to Even in the bitterest agony of dying; suffer,

Till thou shalt rend thy hair, tear out thy eyes, Is the hard lesson that my soul has learnt, And curse thy pride; while I applaud my venAnd now I stand prepared for all to come;

geance. Nor is it worth my leisure to distinguish

Arp. Oh, fatal image! All my powers give way, If love or jealousy commit the violence. And resolution sickens at the thought; Fach have alike been fatal to my peace,

A flood of passion rises in my breast, Confirming me a wretch, and thee a tyrant. And labours fiercely upward to my eyes.



Come, all ye great examples of my sex,

Mon. There is no room for doubt; 'tis certain Chaste virgins, tender wives, and pious matrons! bliss. Ye holy martyrs, who, with wondrous faith The tyrant's cruel violence, thy loss, And constancy unshaken, have sustained Already seem more light; nor has my soul The rage of cruel men, and fiery persecution, One unrepented guilt upon remembrance, Come to my aid, and teach me to defy

To make me dread the justice of hereafter; The malice of this fiend ! I feel, I feel

But standing now on the last verge of life, Your sacred spirit arm me to resistance. Boldly I view the last abyss, eternity, Yes, tyrant, I will stand this shock of fate; Eager to plunge, and leave my woes behind me. Will live to triumph o'er thee, for a moment, Arp. By all the truth of our past loves, I row, Then die well pleased, and follow my Moneses. To die appears a very nothing to me. Baj. Thou talkest it well. But talking is thy But, oh, Moneses ! should I not allow privilege ;

Somewhat to love, and to my sex's tenderness? 'Tis all the boasted courage of thy sex;

This very now I could put off my being Though, for thy soul, thou darest not meet the Without a groan; but to behold thee die! danger.

Nature shrinks in me at the dreadful thought, Arp. By all my hopes of happiness, I dare - Nor can my constancy sustain this blow. My soul is come within her ken of heaven; Mon. Since thou art armed for all things after Charmed with the joys and beauties of that place, death, Her thoughts and all her cares she fixes there, Why should the pomp and preparation of it And 'tis in vain for thee to rage below :

Be frightful to thy eyes! There's not a pain, Thus stars shine bright, and keep their place which age or sickness brings, the least disorder above,

That vexes any part of this fine frame, Though ruffling winds deform this lower world. But is full as grievous. All that the mind feels Baj. This moment is the trial.

Is much, much more. And see, I go to prove it. Arp. Let it come! This moment then shall shew I am a Greek,

Enter a Mute; he signs to the rest, who proffer And speak my country's courage in my suffering.

a bow-string to Moneses. Baj. flere, mercy, I disclaim thee! Mark me, Arp. Think, ere we part ! traitress!

Mon. Of what? My love prepares a victim to thy pride,

Arp. Of something soft, And when it greets thee next, 'twill be in blood. Tender and kind, of something wondrous sad.

[Exit Bajazet.Oh, my full soul! Arp. My heart beats higher, and my nimble Mon. My tongue is at a loss; spirits

Thoughts crowd so fast, thy name is all I have Ride swiftly through their purple channels round. left, ?Tis the last blaze of life. Nature revives, My kindest, truest, dearest, best Arpasia! Like a dim winking lamp, that flashes brightly

[The Mutes struggle with him. With parting light, and straight is dark for ever. Arp. I have a thousand, thousand things to And see, my last of sorrows is at hand;

utter, Death and Moneses come together to me; A thousand more to hear yet. Barbarous vil. As if my stars, that had so long been cruel,

lains ! Grew kind at last, and gave me all I wish. Give me a minute. Speak to me, Moneses !

Mon. Speak to thee? Tis the business of my Enter Moneses, guarded by some Mutes ; others life,

attending with a cup of poison, and a bow- 'Tis all the use I have for vital air. string.

Stand off, ye slaves ! To tell thee that my heart Mon. I charge ye, () ye ministers of fate ! Is full of thee; that, even at this dread moBc swift to execute your master's will;

ment, Bear me to my Arpasia; let me tell her, My fond eyes gaze with joy and rapture on thee; The tyrant is grown kind. He bids me go, Angels, and light itself, are not so fair. And die beneath her feet. A joy shoots through My drooping breast; as often, when the trumpet

Enter BAJAZET, HALY, and Attendants. Has called my youthful ardour forth to battle, Baj. Ha! wherefore lives this dog? Be quick, High in my hopes, and ravished with the sound,

ye slaves! I have rushed eager on, amidst the foremost, And rid me of my pain. To purchase victory, or glorious death.

Mon. For only death, Arp. If it be happiness, alas ! to die, And the last night, can shut out my Arpasia. To lie forgotten in the silent grave,

[The Mutes strangle Moneses. To love and glory lost, and from among

Arp. Oh, dismal ! 'tis not to be borne ! Ye The great Creator's works expunged and blotted, moralists! Then, very shortly, shall we both be happy. Ye'taļkers! what are all your precepts now?

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