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Are you returned? See, father, here he's come | Who has done this? Speak to me, thou sad vi
[Officer whispers Priuli.
Jaffier, upon the scaffold, to prevent
On these poor trembling knees I beg it. Vanished
Here they went down-Oh, I'll dig, dig the den
You shan't delude me thus. Hoa, Jaffier, Jaffier!
Peep up, and give me but a look. I have him!
I've got him, father: Oh! now how I'll smuggle
My love! my dear! my blessing! help me! help
They have hold on me, and drag me to the bottom.
Nay-now they pull so hard-farewell— [Dies.
Maid. She's dead;
Pri. Oh! guard me from the sight on't!
Lead me into some place that's fit for mourning:
Where the free air, light, and the cheerful sun,
A shameful death, stabbed Pierre, and next him- May never enter: hang it round with black:
Both fell together.
Bel. Ha! look there!
My husband bloody, and his friend too! Murder!
Set up one taper, that may last a day,
As long as I've to live; and there all leave me:
Sparing no tears, when you this tale relate,
But bid all cruel fathers dread my fate.
A room of state. The curtain rising slowly to soft music, discovers ALMERIA in mourning, LEONORA waiting in mourning. After the music, ALMERIA rises from her chair, and comes forward.
Alm. Music has charms to sooth a savage breast, To soften rocks, or bend a knotted oak, I've read, that things inanimate have moved, And, as with living souls, have been informed By magic numbers and persuasive sound. What then am I? Am I more senseless grown Than trees or flint? O, force of constant woe! 'Tis not in harmony to calm my griefs. Anselmo sleeps, and is at last night peace; The silent tomb received the good old king; He and his sorrows now are safely lodged Within its cold, but hospitable bosom.
Why am not I at peace?
Leon. Dear madam, cease,
Or moderate your grief; there is no causeAlm. No cause! Peace, peace; there is eternal cause,
And misery eternal will succeed.
Thou canst not tell-thou hast indeed no cause.
Leon. Believe me, madam, I lament Anselmo, And always did compassionate his fortune; Have often wept, to see how cruelly Your father kept in chains his fellow-king: And oft, at night, when all have been retired, Have stolen from bed, and to his prison crept; Where, while his gaoler slept, I thro' the grate Have softly whispered, and enquired his health; Sent in my sighs and prayers for his deliverance; For sighs and prayers were all that I could offer. Alm. Indeed thou hast a soft and gentle na
That thus could melt to see a stranger's wrongs.
Oh, Leonora! hadst thou known Anselmo,
How would thy heart have bled to see his suffer-
Thou hadst no cause, but general compassion.
Leon. Love of my royal mistress gave me
My love of you begot my grief for him;
For I had heard, that when the chance of war
Had blessed Anselmo's arms with victory,
And the rich spoil of all the field, and you,
The glory of the whole, were made the prey
Of his success; that then, in spite of hate,
Revenge, and that hereditary feud
Between Valentia's and Granada's kings,
He did endear himself to your affection,
By all the worthy and indulgent ways
His most industrious goodness could invent;
Proposing, by a match between Alphonso,
His son, the brave Valentian prince, and you,
To end the long dissention, and unite
The jarring crowns.
Alm. Alphonso! O Alphonso!
Thou too art quiet-long hast been at peace—
Both, both! father and son are now no more.
Then why am I? Oh, when shall I have rest?
Why do I live to say you are no more?
Why are all these things thus? Is it of force?
Is there necessity I must be miserable?
Is it of moment to the peace of heaven,
That I should be afflicted thus? If not,
Why is it thus contrived? Why are things laid
By some unscen hand, so, as of sure consequence,
They must to me bring curses, grief of heart,
The last distress of life, and sure despair?
Leon. Alas! you search too far, and think too
Alm. Why was I carried to Anselmo's court? Or there, why was I used so tenderly? Why not ill-treated, like an enemy? For so my father would have used his child. Oh, Alphonso, Alphonso!
Alm. Oh, no, thou knowest not half,
Knowest nothing of my sorrows--if thou didst-
If I should tell thee, wouldst thou pity me?
Tell me; I know thou wouldst; thou art com-
Leon. Witness these tears-
Alm. I thank thee, Leonora-
Indeed I do, for pitying thy sad mistress:
For 'tis, alas! the poor prerogative
Of greatness to be wretched, and unpitied-
But I did promise I would tell thee-What?
My miseries! Thou dost already know them:
And when I told thee thou didst nothing know,
It was because thou didst not know Alphonso:
For to have known my loss, thou must have
His worth, his truth, and tenderness of love.
Leon. The memory of that brave prince stands
In all report-
And I have heard imperfectly his loss;
But, fearful to renew your troubles past,
I never did presume to ask the story.
Alm. If for my swelling heart I can, I'll tell
I was a welcome captive in Valentia,
Even on the day when Manuel, my father,
Led on his conquering troops high as the gates
Of king Anselmo's palace; which, in rage,
And heat of war, and dire revenge, he fired.
The good king, flying to avoid the flames,
Started amidst his foes, and made captivity
His fatal refuge-Would that I had fallen
Amidst those flames-but 'twas not so decreed.
Alphonso, who foresaw my father's cruelty,
Had borne the queen and me on board a ship,
Ready to sail; and, when this news was brought,
We put to sea; but being betrayed by some
Who knew our flight, we closely were pursued
And almost taken; when a sudden storin
Drove us, and those that followed, on the coast
Of Afric: There our vessel struck the shore,
sight-And, bulging 'gainst a rock, was dashed in pieces;
But heaven spared me for yet much more afflic-
Devouring seas have washed thee from my
No time shall raze thee from my memory;
No, I will live to be thy monument :
The cruel occan is no more thy tomb,
But in my heart thou art interred; there, there,
Thy dear resemblance is for ever fixed;
My love, my lord, my husband still, though lost.
Leon. Husband! Oh, Heavens!
Alm. Alas! what have I said?
My grief has hurryed me beyond all thought.
I would have kept that secret; though I know
Thy love, and farth to me deserve all confidence.
But 'tis the wretch's comfort still to have
Some small reserve of near and inward woe,
Some unsuspected hoard of darling grief,
Conducting them who followed us, to shun
The shore, and save me floating on the waves,
While the good queen and my Alphonso perish-
Leon. Alas! were you then wedded to Alphonso?
Alm. That day, that fatal day, our hands were
For when my lord beheld the ship pursuing,
And saw her rate so far exceeding ours,
He came to me, and begged me by my love,
I would consent the priest should make us one;
Which they unseen may wail, and weep, and That, whether death or victory ensued,
I might be his, beyond the power of fate; The queen too did assist his suit-I granted; And in one day was wedded and a widow. Leon. Indeed 'twas mournful
The distant shouts proclaim your father's triumph.
O cease, for heaven's sake, assuage a little
This torrent of your grief; for, this I fear,
'Twill urge his wrath, to see you drowned in tears,
When joy appears in every other face.
Alm. And joy he brings to every other heart,
But double, double weight of woe to mine:
For with him Garcia comes-Garcia, to whom
I must be sacrificed, and all the vows
I gave my dear Alphonso basely broken.
No, it shail never be; for I will die
First, die ten thousand deaths-Look down, look down,
Alphonso, hear the sacred vow I make! [Kneels.
One moment, cease to gaze on perfect bliss,
And bend thy glorious eyes to earth and me.
And thou, Anselmo, if yet thou art arrived,
Through all impediments of purging fire,
To that bright heaven, where my Alphonso reigns,
Behold thou also, and attend my vow.
If ever I do yield, or give consent,
By any action, word, or thought, to wed
Another lord, may then just heaven shower down
Unheard of carses on me, greater far
(If such there be in angry heaven's vengeance)
Than any I have yet endured! And now [Rising.
My heart has some relief; having so well
Discharged this debt, incumbent on my love.
Yet, one thing more I would engage from thee.
Leon. My heart, my life, and will, are only
Alm. I thank thee. 'Tis but this: anon, when all
Are wrapped and busied in the general joy,
Thou wilt withdraw, and privately with me
Steal forth, to visit good Anselmo's tomb.
Leon. Alas! I fear some fatal resolution.
Al. No, on my life, my faith, I mean no ill,
Gon. Be ev'ry day of your long life like this. The sun, bright conquest, and your brighter eyes, Have all conspired to blaze promiscuous light, And bless this day with most unequalled lustre. Your royal father, my victorious lord, Loaden with spoils, and ever-living laurel, Is entering now, in martial pomp, the palace. Five hundred mules precede his solemn march, Which groan beneath the weight of Moorish wealth.
Chariots of war, adorned with glittering gems,
Succeed; and next, a hundred neighing steeds,
White as the fleecy rain on Alpine hills,
That bound and foam, and champ the golden bit,
As they disdained the victory they grace.
Prisoners of war in shining fetters follow;
And captains of the noblest blood of Afric
Sweat by his chariot wheel, and lick and grind,
| With gnashing teeth, the dust his triumphs raise.
The swarming populace spread every wall,
And cling, as if with claws they did enforce
Their hold; through clifted stones stretching and
As if they were all eyes, and every limb
Would feed its faculty of admiration;
While you alone retire, and shun this sight;
This sight, which is indeed not seen (though
The multitude should gaze) in absence of your
Alm. My lord, my eyes ungratefully behold
The gilded trophies of exterior honours;
Nor will my ears be charmed with sounding
Or pompous phrase, the pageantry of fools.
But that my father is returned in safety,
I bend to heaven with thanks.
Gon. Excellent princess!
But 'tis a task unfit for my weak age,
With dying words to offer at your praise.
Garcia, my son, your beauty's lowest slave,
Has better done; in proving with his sword
I would not have a seeming sorrow seen
King. Almeria, rise-My best Gonsalez, rise. To-day.-Retire; divest yourself with speed What, tears! my good old friend—
Believe me, sir, to see you thus, has filled
Mine eyes with more delight than they can hold.
King. By heaven, thou lovest me, and I'm
pleased thou dost;
Take it for thanks, old man, that I rejoice
To see thee weep on this occasion-Some
Here are, who seem to mourn at our success.
Why is it, Almeria, that you meet our eyes,
Upon this solemn day, in these sad weeds?
In opposition to my brightness, you
And yours are all like daughters of affliction.
Alm. Forgive me, sir, if I in this offend.
The year, which I have vowed to pay to heaven,
In mourning and strict life, for my deliverance
From wreck and death, wants yet to be expired.
King. Your zeal to heaven is great, so is your
Yet something, too, is due to me, who gave
That life, which heaven preserved. A day be-
In filial duty, had atoned and given
A dispensation to your vow-No more!
"Twas weak and wilful-and a woman's error.
Yet, upon thought, it doubly wounds my sight,
To see that sable worn upon the day,
Succeeding that, in which our deadliest foe,
Hated Anselmo, was interred-By heaven,
It looks as thou didst mourn for him! just so
Thy senseless vow appeared to bear its date,
Not from that hour wherein thou wert preserved,
But that wherein the cursed Alphonso perished.
Ha! What? thou dost not weep to think of that!
Gon. Have patience, royal sir; the princess
To have offended you. If fate decreed,
One pointed hour should be Alphonso's loss,
And her deliverance, is she to blame?
King. I tell thee she's to blame, not to have
When my first foe was laid in earth, such enmity,
Such detestation bears my blood to his;
My daughter should have revelled at his death,
She should have made these palace walls to shake,
And all this high and ample roof to ring
Of that offensive black: on me be all
The violation of your vow; for you
It shall be your excuse, that I command it.
Gar. [Kneeling.] Your pardon, sir, if I pre-
sume so far,
As to remind you of your gracious promise.
King. Rise, Garcia-I forgot. Yet stay,
Alm. My boding heart!-What is your pleasure, sir?
King. Draw near, and give your hand, and,
Receive this lord, as one whom I have found
Worthy to be your husband, and my son.
Gar. Thus let me kneel to take-O not to take-
But to devote, and yield myself for ever
The slave and creature of my royal mistress!
Gon. O let me prostrate pay my worthless
King. No more; my promise long since pass
And Garcia's well-tried valour, all oblige me.
This day we triumph; but to-morrow's sun,
Garcia, shall shine to grace thy nuptials-
Gar. She faints! Help to support her.
Gon. She recovers.
King. A fit of bridal fear. How is't, Almeria? Alm. A sudden chillness seizes on my spirits. Your leave, sir, to retire.
King. Garcia, conduct her.
[Garcia leads Almeria to the door, and returns. This idle vow hangs on her woman's fears; I'll have a priest shall preach her from her faith, And make it sin, not to renounce that vow Which I'd have broken. Now, what would Alonzo?
Alon. Your beauteous captive, Zara, is arrived, And with a train as if she still were wife To Albucacim, and the Moor had conquered.
King. It is our will she should be so attended. Bear hence these prisoners. Garcia, which is he, Of whose mute valour you relate such wonders? [Prisoners led of