Зображення сторінки
PDF
ePub

More than his crown, to impart ere Osmyn die. Which seemed to intimate, as if Alphonso Sel. It needs not, for the king will straight be Were still alive, and arming in Valentia : here,

Which wears, indeed, the colour of a truth, And, as to your revenge, not his own interest, They who are fled have that way bent their course. Pretend to sacrifice the life of Osmyn.

Of the same nature divers notes have been Zara. What shall I say, invent, contrive, advise? Dispersed, to amuse the people; whereupon Something to blind the king, and save his life, Some, ready of belief, have raised this rumour, In whom I live.. Spite of my rage and pride, That, being saved upon the coast of Afric, I am a woman, and a lover still.

He there disclosed himself to Albuccacim, Oh! 'tis more grief but to suppose his death, And, by a secret compact made with him, Than still to meet the rigour ot' his scorn. Opened and urged the way to this invasion; From my despair my anger had its source; While he himself, returning to Valentia, When he is dead I must despair for ever. In private, undertook to raise this tumult. For ever! that's despair-it was distrust

Zara. Ha ! hear'st thou that? Is Osmyn then Before; distrust will ever be in love,

Alphonso ? And anger in distrust; both short-lived pains. Oh, Hcaven! a thousand things occur at once But in despair, an ever-during death,

To my remembrance now, that make it plain. No term, no bound, but infinite of woe.

Oh, certain death for him, as sure despair Oh, torment, but to think! what then to bear? For me, if it be known-If not, what hope Not to be borne-Devise the means to shun it, Have I? Yet 'twere the lowest baseness now, Quick; or, by Ileaven, this dagger drinks thy To yield him up-No, I will conceal him, blood.

And try the force of yet more obligations. Sel. My life is yours, nor wish I to preserve it, Gons. 'Tis not impossiblc. Yet it may be, But to serve you. I have already thought. That same impostor has usurped his name. Zura. Forgive my rage; I know thy love and Your beauteous captive Zara can inform, truth.

If such a one, so escaping, was received, But say, what's to be done, or when, or how, At any time, in Albuccacim's court. Shall I prevent or stop the approaching danger? King. Pardon, fair excellence, this long neglect: Sel. You must still seem more resolute, and An unforeseen, unwelcome hour of business, fixed

Has thrust between us and our while of love; On Osmyn's death; too quick a change of mercy But wearing, now, apace with ebbing sand, Might breed suspicion of the cause. Advise Will quickly waste and give again the day. That execution may be done in private.

Zara. You're too secure: the danger is more Zara. On what pretence ?

imminent Sel. Your own request's enough.

Than your high courage suffers you to see; However, for a colour, tell him, you

While Osmyn lives, you are not safe.
Have cause to fear his guards may be corrupted, King. His doom
And some of them bought off to Osmyn’s interest, Is passed ; if you revoke it not, he dies.
Who, at the place of execution, will

Zura. 'Tis well. By what I heard upon your Attempt to force his way for an escape ;

entrance, Thestate of things will countenance all suspicions. I find I can nntold what yet concerns Then offer to the king, to have him strangled You more. One, who did call himself Alphonso, In secret, by your mutes; and get an order, Was cast upon my coast, as 'tis reported, That none but mutes may have admittance to him. And oft had private conference with the king; I can no more, the king is here. Obtain To what effect I knew not then: but he, This grant, and I'll acquaint you with the rest. Alphonso, secretly departed, just

About the time our arms einbarked for Spain. Enter Kixo, GONSALEZ, and Perez.

What I know more is, that a triple league, King. Bear to the dungeon those rebellious Of strictest friendship, was professed between slaves,

Alphonso, Heli, and the traitor Osmyn. The ignoble curs that yelp to fill the cry,

King. Public report is ratified in this. And spend their mouths in barking tyranny. Zara. And Osmyn's death required, of strong But for their leaders, Sancho and Ramirez,

necessity. Let them be led away to present death.

King. Give order strait, that all the prisoners Perez, see it performed.

die. Gons. Might I presume,

Zara. Forbear a moment! somewhat more I Their execution better were deferred,

have, Till Osmyn die. Mean time we may learn more Worthy your private ear, and this your minister. of this conspiracy.

King. Let all, except Gonsalez, leave the room. King. Then be it so.

[Ereunt PEREZ, 86, Stay, soldier; they shall suffer with the Moor. Zara. I am your captive, and you've used me Are none of those returned who followed Heli?

nobly; Gons. None, sir. Some papers have been since And, in return of that, though otherwise discovered

Your enemy,

I have discovered Osmyn, lo Roderigo's house, who fled with him, His private practice, and conspiracy,

not yet

Against your state: and, fully to discharge King. What dost thou think, Gonsalez? Myself of what I've undertaken, now

Are we not much indebted to this fair one? I think it fit to tell you, that your guards

Gons. I am a little slow of credit, sir,
Are tainted; some among them have resolved In the sincerity of women's actions,
To rescue Osmyn at the place of death. Methinks this lady's hatred to the Moor

King. Is treason, then, so near us as our guards? Disquiets her too much ; which makes it seem
Zura. Most certain ; though my knowledge is As if she'd rather that she did not hate him.

I wish her mutes are meant to be employed So ripe, to point at the particular men.

As she pretends—I doubt it now-Your guards King. What's to be done?

Corrupted ! How? By whom? Who told her so? Zura. That, too, I will advise.

l'th' evening Osmyn was to die; at midnight I have, remaining in my train, some mutes, She bego'd the royal signet, to release him; A present once from the sultana queen, In the morning he must die again ; ere noon In the grand signior's court. These, from their Her mutes alone must strangle him, or he'll infancy, Escape. This, put together, suits not well

. Are practised in the trade of death ; and shall King. Yet that there's truth in what she has (As there the custom is) in private stravgle

discovered Osmyn.

Is manifest, from every circumstance. Gons. My lord, the queen advises well. This tumult, and the lords who fled with Heli, King. What offering, or what recompence re- Are confirmation ; that Alphonso lives, mains

Agrees expressly too, with her report. In me, that can be worthy so great services ? Gons. I grant it, sir; and doubt not, but in To cast beneath your feet the crown you've saved, rage Though on the head that wears it, were too little. Of jealousy, she has discovered what

Zura. Of that hereafter: but, mean time, 'tis fit She now repents. It may be I'm deceived. You give strict charge that none may be admitted But why that needless caution of the princess? To see the prisoner, but such mutes as I What if she had seen Osmyn? Though 'twere Shall send.

strange ; King. Who waits there?

But if she had, what was’t to her, unless

She feared her stronger charms might cause the Enter PEREZ.

Moor's On your life, take heed

Affection to revolt? That only Zara's mutes, or such who bring King. I thank thee, friend. Her warrant, have admittance to the Moor. There's reason in thy doubt, and I am warned.

Zura. They, and no other, not the princess' self. But think’st thou that my daughter saw this Per. Your majesty shall be obeyed.

Moor? King. Retire.

(Eril Perez. Gons. If Osmyn be, as Zara has related, Gons. That interdiction, so particular, Alphonso's friend, 'tis not impossible Pronounced with vehemence, against the princess, But she might wish, on his account, to see him. Should have more meaning than appears barefa- king. Say'st thou? By Heaven, thou hast ceil.

roused a thought, This king is blinded by his love and heels That, like a sudden earthquake, shakes my frame It not. [.Aside.}- Your majesty, sure, iniglit lave Confusion! then my daughter's an accomplice, spared

And plots in private with this hellish Moor! The last restraint: you hardly can suspect Gons. That were too hard a thought—but The princess is confederate with the Moor.

see, she comesZura. I've heard her charity did once extend 'Twere not amiss to question her a little, So far, to visit him, at his request.

And try, howe'er, if I've divined aright. Gons. Ha !

If what I fear be true, she'll be concerned King. How! She visit Osmyn! What, my For Osmyn's death, as he's Alphonso's friend : daughter?

Urge that, to try if she'll solicit for him.
Sel. Madam, take heed; or you have ruined all.
Zura. And after did solicit you, on his

Enter ALMERIA and LEONORA.
Behalf,

King. Your coming has prevented me, AlmeKing. Never. You have been misinformed.

ria; Zara. Indeed! Then 'twas a whisper, spread I had determined to have sent for you. by some

Let

your attendant be dismissed; I have Who wished it so; a common art in courts.

(LEORORA retires. I will retire, and instantly prepare

To talk with you. Come near; why dost thou Instructions for my ministers of death.

shake? [Ereunt ZARA an! SELIM. What mean those swollen and red-flecked eyes, Gons. There's somewhat yet of mystery in this; that look Her words and actions are obscure and double, As they had wept in blood, and worn the night Sometimes concur, and sometimes disagree : In waking anguish? Why this on the day I like it not.

(Aside. Which was designed to celebrate thy muptials;

But that the beams of light are to be stained Yes, all my father's wounding wrath, thoughreach With reeking gore, from traitors on the rack? Reproach cuts deeper than the keenest sword, Wherefore I have deferred the marriage-rites; And cleaves my heart, I would have borne it all, Nor shall the guilty horrors of the day

Nay, all the pains that are prepared for thee; Profane that jubilee.

To the remorseless rack I would have given Alm. All days to me

This weak and tender flesh, to have been bruised Henceforth are equal: this, the day of death, And torn, rather than have revealed thy being. To-morrow, and the next, and each that follows, King. Heh! hell ! Do I hear this, and yet enWill undistinguished roll, and but prolong

dure! One hated line of more extended woer

What! dar'st thou to my face”avow thy guilt? King. Whence is thy grief? Give me to know Hence, ere I curse—Ay my just rage with speed ; the cause;

Lest I forget us both, and spurn thee from me. And look thou answer me with truth; for know Alm. And yet a father! Think I am your child, I am not imaequainted with thy falsehood.

Turn not your eyes away-look on me kneeling! Why art thou mute? Base and degenerate maid! Now, curse me if you can, now spurn me off. Gons. Dear madam, speak, or you'll incense Did ever father curse his kneeling child ? the king.

Never: for always blessings crown that posture. Alm. What is't to speak? Or wherefore should Nature inclines, and half way meets that duty, I speak?

Stooping to raise from earth the filial reverence; What mean these tears but grief unutterable ? For bended knees returning folding arms, King. They are the dumb confessions of thy With prayers, and blessings, and paternal love. mind;

Oh, hear me, then, thus crawling on the earthThey mean thy guilt, and say thou wert confede- King. Be thou advised, and let me go, while rate

yet With damned conspirators, to take my life. The light impression thou hast made remains. Oh, impious parricide ! Now canst thou speak ? Alm. No, never will I rise, nor loose this hold,

Alm. O earth! behold I kneel upon thy bosom, 'Till you are moved, and grant that he may live. And bend my flowing eyes to stream upon King. Ha! Who may live? Take heed! No Thy face, imploring thee that thou wilt yield;

more of that ; Open thy bowels of compassion; take

For, on my soul, he dies, though thou and I, Into thy womb the last and most forlorn And all, should follow, to partake his doom. Of all thy race! Hear me, thou common parent, Away, off, let me go -Call her attendants. I have no parent else—be thou a mother,

(LEONORA und women return. And step between me and the curse of him, Alm. Drag me, and harrow the earth with my Who was-who was, but is no more, a father ; bare bosom; But brands my imocence with horrid crimes; I will not go till you have spared my husband ! And, for the tender names of child and daughter, King. Ha! What say'st thou? Husband ! Now calls me murderer and parricide.

Husband! damnation ! King. Rise, I command thee, rise--and if thou What husband! which? Who? wouldst

Alm. He, he is my husband ! Acquit thyself of these detested names,

King. Poison and daggers! Who? Swear thou hast never seen that foreign dog, Alm. Oh!

(Paints. Now doomed to die, that most accursed Osmyn. Gons. Help! support hier.

Alm. Never, but as with innocence I might, Alm. Let me go, let me fall, sink deep-- I'll dig, And free of all bad purposes. So Heaven's I'll dig a grave, and tear up death; I will; My witness.

I'll scrape, till I collect his rotten bones, King. Vile equivocating wretch !

And cloath their nakedness with my own flesh; With innocence! Oh, patience! hear-she owns Yes, I will strip off life, and we will change: it!

I will be death! then, though you kill my husband, Confesses it! By Heaven, I'll have him racked, He shall be mine still, and for ever mine. Torn, mangled, flayed, impaled—all pains and King. What husband? whom dost thou mean? tortures

Gons. She raves. That wit of man, or dire revenge, can think, dlm. Oh, that I did! Osmyn, he is my husband. Shall he, accumulated, underbear.

King. Osmyn! Alm. Oh, I am lost! There fate begins to Alm. Not Osmyn, but Alphonso, is my dear wound.

And wedded husband-Heaven, and air, and seas, King. Hear me; then, if thou canst, reply; | Ye winds and waves, I call ye all to witness. know, traitress,

King. Wilder than winds or waves thyself dost I'm not to learn that cursed Alphonso lives;

rave; Nor am I ignorant what Osmyn is.

Should I hear more, I too should catch thy madAlm. Then all is ended, and we both must die.

ness.Since thou’rt revealed, alone thou shalt not die ; Yet somewhat she must mean of dire import, And yet alone would I have died, Heaven knows, Which I' l not hear tit! I am more at peace. Repeated deaths, rather than have revealed thee. | Watch her returning senso, and bring me word; VOL. I.

2 L

And look that she attempt not on her life. And urged by nature pleading for his child,

(Exit King. With which he seems to be already shaken. Alm. Oh, stay, yet stay; hear me, I am not mad. And though I know he hates, beyond the grave, I would to Heaven I were-He's gone.

Anselmo's race; yet if-that If concludes me. Gons. Have comfort.

To doubt, when I may be assured, is folly. Alm. Cursed be that tongue that bids me be But how prevent the captive queen, who means of comfort !

To set him free ? Ay, now tis plain. O well Cursed my own tongue, that could not move his Invented tale! He was Alphonso's friend. pity!

This subtle woman will amuse the king. Cursed these weak hands that could not hold If I delay='twill do-or better so. him here!

One to my wish.—Alonzo, thou art welcome. For he is gone, to doom Alphonso's death. Gons. Your too excessive grief works on your

Enter ALONZO. fancy,

Alon. The king expects your lordship. And deludes your sense. Alphonso, if living, Gons. 'Tis no matter. Is far from hence, beyond your father's power. I'm not i' th’ way at present, good Alonzo.

Alm. Hence, thou detested, ill-timed flatterer, Alon. If’t please your lordship, I'll return, and Source of my woes ! thou and thy race be cursed! say But doubly thou, who couldst alone have policy

I have not seen you. And fraud to find the fatal secret out,

Gons. Do, my best Alonzo. And know that Osmyn was Alphonso.

Yet stay, I would—but go; anon will serveGons. Ha!

Yet I have that requires thy speedy help. Alm. Why dost thou start? What dost thou I think thou wouldst not stop to do me service? see or hear?

Alon. I am your creature. Was it the doleful bell, tolling for death?

Gons. Say thou art my friend. Or dying groans from my Alphonso's breast? I have seen thy sword do noble execution. See, see, look yonder! where a grizzled, pale, Alon. All that it can, your lordship shall comAnd ghastly head glares by, ali smeared with mand. blood,

Gons. Thanks; and I take thee at thy word. Gasping as it would speak; and after, see!

Thou'st seen, Behold, a damp, dead hand, has dropped a dagger: Amongst the followers of the captive queen, I'll catch it-Hark! a voice cries murder ! ah ! Dumb men, who make their meaning known by My father's voice! Hollow it sounds, and calls signs ? Me from the tomb—I'll follow it; for there Alon. I have, my lord. I shall again behold my dear Alphonso.

Gons. Couldst thou procure, with speed [Exeunt ALMERIA and LEONORA. And privacy, the wearing garb of one Gons. She's greatly grieved; nor am I less of those, though purchased by his death, I'd give surprised.

Thee such reward, as should exceed thy wish. Osmyn Alphonso! No, she over-rates

Alon. Conclude it done. Where shall I war My policy; I ne'er suspected it;

your lordship? Nor now had known it, but from her mistake. Gons. At my apartment. Use thy utmost de Her husband, too! Ha! where is Garcia then;

ligence; And where the crown that should descend on him, And say, I've not been seen-Haste, good To grace the line of my posterity?

Alonzo.

(Erit Alonzo. Hold, let me think-if I should tell the king- So, this can hardly fail. Alphonso slain, Things come to this extremity: his daughter The greatest obstacle is then removed. Wedded already-what if he should yield ? Almeria, widowed, yet again may wed, Knowing no remedy for what is past,

And I yet fix the crown on Garcia's head. (Esil.

ACT V.

SCENE I.-A Room of State.

King. Is Osmyn so disposed, as I commandal?

Per. Fast bound in double chains, and at full Enter King, Perez, and Alonzo.

length, King. Not to be found ! in an ill hour he's He lies supine on earth : with as much ease absent.

She might remove the centre of this earth, · None, say you? none ! What, not the favourite As loose the rivets of his bonds. eunuch?

King. 'Tis well. Nor she herself, nor any of her mutes,

(A mute appeurs, and seeing the king, relires. Have yet required admittance?

Ha! stop and seize that mute; Alonzo, fu'3* . Per. None, my lord.

him.

him;

turns.

Entering, he met my eyes, and, starting back, What's thy whole life, thy soul, thy all, to my Frighted, and fumbling one hand in his bosom, One moment's ease? Hear my command; and As to conceal the importance of his errand.

look (Alonzo follows him, and returns with a paper. That thou obey, or horror on thy head : Alon. A bloody proof of obstinate fidelity! Drench ine thy dagger in Alphonso's heartKing. What dost thou mean?

Why dost thou start ? Resolve, or — Alon. Soon as I seized the man,

Per. Sir, I will. He snatched from out his bosom this—and strove, King. 'Tis well—that when she comes to set With rash and greedy haste, at once, to cram

him free, The morsel down his throat. I caught his arm, His teeth may grin, and mock at her remorse. And hardly wrenched his hand to wring it from

[Perez going.

Stay thee-I've farther thought-I will add to Which done, he drew a poniard from his side,

this, And, on the instant, plunged it in his breast. And give her eyes yet greater disappointment: King. Remove the body thence, ere Zara When thou hast ended him, bring me his robe; see it.

And let the cell, where she'll expect to see him, Alon. I'll be so bold to borrow his attire; Be darkened, so as to abuse the sight. 'Twill quit me of my promise to Gonsalez. I'll be conducted thither-mark me well

(Aside. Erit. There with his turban and his robe arrayed, Per. Whate'er it is, the king's complexion And laid along, as he now lies, supine,

I shall convict her, to her face, of falsehood. King. How's this! My mortal foe beneath my When, for Alphonso's, she shall take my hand,

roof! (Having read the letter. And breathe her sighs upon my lips, for his ; Oh, give me patience, all ye powers ! No, ra- Sudden I'll start, and dash her with her guilt. ther

But see, she comes.

I'll shun the encounter ; Give me new rage, implacable revenge,

thou And trebled fury-Ha! who's there?

Follow me, and give heed to my direction. Per. My lord.

[Ereunt King. Hence, slave! how dar'st thou bide to watch, and pry,

Enter ZARA and Selim. Into how poor a thing a king descends,

Zura. The mute not yet returned ! ha! 'twas How like thyself, when passion treads him down!

the king, Ha! stir not, on thy life ; for thou wert fixed, The king that parted hence! frowning he went; And planted here, to see me gorge this bait, His eyes, like meteors, rolled, then darted down And lash against the hook-by Heaven, you're Their red and angry beams; as if his sight all

Would, like the raging dog-star, scorch the earth, Rank traitors ! thou'rt with the rest combined: And kindle ruin in its course: Dost think Thou knew'st that Osmyn was Alphonso; He saw me? knew'st

Sel. Yes: but then, as if he thought My daughter privately with him conferred; His

eyes had erred, he hastily recalled And wert the spy and pander to their meeting. The imperfect look, and sternly turned away. Per. By all that's holy, I'm amazed

Zura. Shun me when seen! I fear thou hast King. Thou liest.

undone me. Thou art accomplice too with Zara; here Thy shallow artifice begets suspicion, Where she sets down— Still I will set thee free.' And, like a cobweb veil, but thinly shades

[Reading. The face of thy design; alone disguising That somewhere is repeated—I have power What should have ne'er been seen, imperfect O'er them that are thy guards.'-Mark that, thou

mischief. traitor.

Thou, like the adder, venomous and deaf, Per. It was your majesty's command I should Hast stung the traveller, and after hear'st Obey her order

Not his pursuing voice; even when thou think'st King. (Reading.] 'And still will I set To hide, the rustling leaves and bended grass Thee free, Alphonso'-Hell! cursed, cursed Al-Confess, and point the path which thou hast phonso !

crept. False and perfidious Zara! Strumpet daughter! Oh, fate of fools ! officious in contriving ; Away, begone, thou feeble boy, fond Love! In executing, puzzled, lame, and lost. All nature, softness, pity, and compassion, Sel. Avert it, Heaven, that you should ever This hour I throw ye off and entertain

suffer Fell hate within my breast, revenge and gall. For my defect; or that the means which I By Heaven, I'll meet, and counterwork this Devised to serve, should ruin your design! treachery.

Prescience is Heaven's alone, not given to man; Hark thee, villain, traitor-answer mc, slave! If I have failed, in what, as being man,

Per. My service lras not merited those titles. I needs must fail, impute not as a crime King. Dar’st thou reply? Take that-thy ser- My nature's want, but punish nature in me; vice! thine!

[Strikes him. I I plead not for a pardon, and to live,

« НазадПродовжити »