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Against thee, liberty and Agrippina :
The world, the prize ; and fair befall the victors.

But soft! why do I waste the fruitless hours
In threats unexecuted ? Haste thee, fly
These hated walls that seem to mock my shame,
And cast me forth in duty to their lord.

ACER. 'Tis time to go, the sun is high advanced, And, ere mid-day, Nero will come to Baiæ.

AGRIP. My thought aches at him; not the basilisk More deadly to the sight, than is to me The cool injurious eye of frozen kindness. I will not meet its poison. Let him feel Before he sees me.

ACER.

Why, then, stays my sovereign, Where he so soon may

AGRIP.

Yes, I will be gone, But not to Antium-all shall be confess'd, Whate'er the frivolous tongue of giddy fame Has spread among the crowd ; things that but

whisper'd Have arch'd the hearer's brow, and riveted His eyes in fearful ecstasy : no matter

What; so't be strange, and dreadful. --Sorceries,
Assassinations, poisonings—the deeper
My guilt, the blacker his ingratitude.

And you, ye manes of ambition's victims,
Enshrined Claudius, with the pitied ghosts
Of the Syllani, doom'd to early death,
(Ye unavailing horrors, fruitless crimes !)
If from the realms of night my voice ye hear,
In lieu of penitence, and vain remorse,
Accept my vengeance. Though by me ye bled,
He was the cause. My love, my fears for him,
Dried the soft springs of pity in my heart,
And froze them up with deadly cruelty.
Yet, if your injured shades demand my fate,
If murder cries for murder, blood for blood,
Let me not fall alone; but crush his pride,
And sink the traitor in his mother's ruin. [Exeunt.

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OTHO. Thus far we're safe. Thanks to the rosy

queen
Of amorous thefts : and had her wanton son
Lent us his wings, we could not have beguiled
With more elusive speed the dazzled sight
Of wakeful jealousy. Be gay securely ;
Dispel, my fair, with smiles, the tim'rous cloud
That hangs on thy clear brow. So Helen look'd,
So her white neck reclined, so was she borne
By the young Trojan to his gilded bark
With fond reluctance, yielding modesty,
And oft reverted eye, as if she knew not
Whether she fear'd, or wish'd to be pursued.

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HYMN TO IGNORANCE.

A FRAGMENT.

HAIL, horrors, hail ! ye ever gloomy bowers,

Ye gothic fanes, and antiquated towers, Where rushy Camus' slowly-winding flood Perpetual draws his humid train of mud : Glad I revisit thy neglected reign, Oh take me to thy peaceful shade again. But chiefly thee, whose influence breathed from high Augments the native darkness of the sky; Ah, ignorance ! soft salutary power ! Prostrate with filial reverence I adore. Thrice hath Hyperion roll'd his annual race, Since weeping I forsook thy fond embrace. Oh say, successful dost thou still oppose Thy leaden ægis 'gainst our ancient foes ?

Still stretch, tenacious of thy right divine,
The massy sceptre o'er thy slumb’ring line ?
And dews Lethean through the land dispense
To steep in slumbers each benighted sense ?
If any spark of wit's delusive ray
Break out, and flash a momentary day,
With damp, cold touch forbid it to aspire,
And huddle up in fogs the dangʻrous fire.

Oh say—she hears me not, but, careless grown,
Lethargic nods upon her ebon throne.
Goddess ! awake, arise ! alas, my fears !
Can powers immortal feel the force of years ?
Not thus of old, with ensigns wide unfurl'd,
She rode umphant o'er the vanquish'd world;
Fierce nations own’d her unresisted might,
And all was ignorance, and all was night.

Oh! sacred age! Oh! times for ever lost ! (The schoolman's glory, and the churchman's boast.) For ever gone -yet still to fancy new, Her rapid wings the transient scene pursue, And bring the buried ages back to view.

High on her car, behold the grandam ride Like old Sesostris with barbaric pride ;

a team of harness'd monarchs bend

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