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tion, I here, before you both, acquit her of the least Lady T. What I have said, my lord, is not my suspicion raised against the honour of my bed. excuse, but my confession; my errors (give them, Therefore, when abroad her conduct may be ques- if you please, a harder name,) cannot be defended. tioned, do her fame that justice.

No, what's in its nature wrong, no words can palLady T. Oh, sister! (Weeping:)

liate-no plea can alter! What then remains in Lord T. When I am spoken of, where, without my conditions, but resignation to your pleasure? favour, this action may be canvassed, relate but Time only can convince you of my future conduct: na f my provocations, and give me up to censure. therefore, till I have lived an object of forgiveness,

Lady T. Support me-save mo-hide me from I dare not hope for pardon. The penance of 2 the world!

lonely, contrite life, were little to the innocent; but Lord T. (Returning.) I had forgot. (To Lady to have deserved this separation. will strew perG uce.) You have no share in my resentment, petual thorns upon my pillow. Sister, farewell! therefore, as you have lived in friendship with her, (Kisses her.) Your virtue needs no warning from the your parting may admit of gentler terms than suit shame that falls on me; but when you think I have the honour of an injured husband. Offers to go.) atoned my follies past, persuade your injured bro.

Man. (Interposing.) My lord, you must not, shall ther to forgive them. not leo ve her thus! One moment's stay can do Lord T. No, madam; your errors, thus renounced your cause no wrong. If looks can speak the an- this instant are forgotten! So deep, so due a guish of her heart, I'll answer, with my life, there's sense of them has made you what my utmosi something labouring in her mind, that, would you wishes formed, and all my heart has sigbed bear the hearing, might deserve it.

for. Long parted friends, that pass through easy Lord T. Consider-since we no more can meet, voyages of life, receive but common gladness in press not my staying to insult her.

their meeting; but, from a shipwreck saved, we Lady T. Yet stay, my lord-the little I would say mingle tears with our embraces. will not deserve an insult; and, undeserved, I know your nature gives it not. But as you've

(Embraces Lady Toronly.) called in friends to witness your resentment, let Lady T. What words-what love-what duty can them be equal hearers of my last reply.

repay such obligations ? Lord T. I shan't refuse you that, madam-be it Lord ". Preserve but this desire to please, your

power is endless. Lady T. My lord, you ever have complained I Lady T. Oa! till this moment, never did I know, wanted love; but as you kindly have allowed I my lord, I had a heart to give you! never gave it to another, so, when you hear the Lord T. By heaven! this yielding hand, when story of my heart, though you may still complain, first it gave you to my wishes, presented not ! you would not wonder at my coldness.

treasure more desirable! Oh, Manly! sister! as Lord T. Proceed, I am attentive.

you have often shared in my disquiet, partake of Lady T. Before I was your bride, my lord, the my felicity-my new-born joy! See here the brida flattering world had talked me into beauty; which, of my desires! This may be called my weddingat my glass, my youthful vanity contirmed. Wild day. with that fame, I thought mavkind my slaves I Lady G. Sister, (for now methinks that name is triumphed over hearts, while all my pleasure was dearer to my heart than ever,) let me congratulate their pain: yet was my own so equally insensible the happiness that opeus to you. to all, that, when a father's firm commands enjoined Man. Long, long, and mutual, may it flow! me to make choice of one, I even there declined Lord T. To make our happiness complete, my the liberty ho gave, and to his own election yielded dear, join here with me to give a hand, that amply up my youth: his tender care, my lord, directed will repay the obligation. him to you. Our hands were joined, but still my Lady T. Sister, a day like thisheart was wedded to its folly. My only joy was Ladg G. Admits of no excuse against the general power, command, society, profuseness, and to lead joy.

(Gives her hand to Alanly.) in pleasures. The husband's right to rule I thought Man. A joy like mine - despairs of words to a vulgar law, I knew no directors but my passions, speak it. no master but my will. Even you, my lord, some- Lord T. Oh, Manly, how the name of friend entimes o'ercome by love, were pleased with my de- | dears the brother!

(Embracing him.) light: nor then foresaw this sad misuse of your Man. Your words, my lord, will warm me to deindulgence. And though I call myself ungrateful serve them. while I own it, yet as a truth it cannot be denied, Lady T. Sister, to your unerring virtue now that kind indulgence has undone me; it added commit the guidance of my future days-strength to my habitual failings; and, in a heart thus warmed in wild, unthinking life, no wonder Never the paths of pleasure more to tread, if the gentler sense of love was lost.

But where your guarded innocence shall lead. Lord '. Oh, Manly! where has this creature's For in the married state the world must ouen heart been buried?

(Apart to Man.) Divided happiness was never known : Man. If yet recoverable, how vast the treasure! To make it mutual, nature points the way;

(Apart to Lord 7'.) Let husbands govern, gentle wires obey.

A TALE OF MYSTERY, A MELODRAMA, IN TWO ACTS.—BY THOMAS HOLCROFT.

[graphic][subsumed][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]

ACT L.

Sel. Of what kind ? SCENE I. A Hall in the house of Bonamo, with two

Fiam. A very bad kind. The Count Romaldi side doors, and folding-doors in the back scene: a

Sel. (Alarme l.) What of him?

Fiam. Is coming. table, pen, ink, and paper, chairs, &c. Music, to ex

Sil. When? press discontent and alarm.

Fiam. This evening.
Enter SELINA and FIAMETTA,

Sel. Heavens! What can he want?

Fiam. Want? He wants mischief. We all know Sel. You seem hurried, Fiametta ?

he wants you to marry his son, because you're a Fiam. Hurried, truly! Yes, yes; and you'll be rich heiress. hurried, too.

Sel. Surely, my uncle will noter consent: Sel. I?

Fiam. Your uncle and all Savoy fear him. Fiam. Fine newe!

Bona. (Calling without.) Fiametta !

bon e.

diam. I am here, sir.

Bona. You certainly know more concernivg thig Bona. But I want you here.

man? Fiam. Lord, sir! I am busy.

Fiam. Since it must be told, I do. Sel. Go, run to my uncle.

Bona. Then speak. Fiam. It's a shame that he should not think of Fiam. It is quite a tragedy! marrying you to his own son; when he knows how Bona. Indeed! Let us hear. dearly you love each other.

Fiam. It is now seven or eight years ago, when Sel. It is the excellence of my dear uncle's heart, you having sent me to Chambery, I was coming that disdains the appearance of self-interest.

It was almost dark; every thing was still; Fiam. So, rather than be blamed himself, be'll I was winding along the dale, and the rocks were make you and I and every body miserable! But all as it were turning black. Of a sudden, I heard I'll talk to him!

cries! A man was murdering! I sbook from head Bona. (Without.) Fiametta, I say!

to foot! Presently, the cries died away; and I beFiam. Coming! (Going.) He shall hear of it. I'm held two bloody men, with their daggers in their in a proper cue. He knows I'm right, and I'll not hands, stealing off under the crags at the foot of spare him.

the mill. I stood like a stone; for I was frightened [Exit talking out of my wits! So I thought I heard groans; and,

afeared as I was, I had the sense to think they (Hunting music.)

must come from the poor murdered creature. So Enter STEPHANO, with his fowling-piece, net, and I listened, and followed my ears, and presently I game.

saw this very man

Sel. Francisco? Sel. Why are you so late, Stephano? I had a thousaad alarms.

Fiam. Weltering in his blood! To be sure I Steph. Forgive me, dear Selina. The pursuit of I do by myself ? So presently my cries were heard;

screamed and called loud enougb : for what could game led me too far among the mountains.

and honest Michelli, the miller, with his man, came Sel. Do you know

running Steph, What? Sel. I almost dread to tell you. Count Romaldi

Bona. I now remember the tale. The poor man is coming.

recovered; and every body praised Michelli. Steph. Romaldi !

Fiam. So they ought; he is an honest, good soul! Sel. I shudder when I recollect the selfishness of

What then, sir, can you suppose I thought, when, his views, and the violence of his character.

about a week ago, I again saw Francisco's appariStep. Add, the wickedness of his heart.

tion standing before me; making signs that he was

famished with hunger and thirst? I knew him at (Music, to express chattering contention.) once; and he soon bethought himself of me. If you Enter BONAMO and FIAMETTA.

had seen his clasped bands, and his thankful looks,

and his dumb notes, and his signs of joy, at having Fiam. I tell you 'again, sir, it is uncharitable, it found me! Wbile I have a morsel, he shall never is cruel; it is hard-hearted in you, to give any such want. I'll hire him a cottage; l'll wait upon him; orders.

I'll work for him: so turn him out of doors, if you Bona. And I tell you they shall be obeyed. have the heart, Have not I a right to do as I please in my own Steph. Fiametta, you wrong my father. house?

Bona. l'll hear his story from himself. Fiam. No, sir; you have no right to do wrong Fiam. He can't speak. anywhere.

Bora. But he can write. Steph. What is the dispute, sir?

Fiam. I warrant him, I'm sure he's a gentleFiam. He has ordered me to turn the poor | man. Francisco out of doors; because, forsooth, the Bona. Bring him here: if he prove himself an house is not large enough to hold this Count Ro- honest man, I am bis friend. maldi.

Fiam. I know that, or you shall be no master of Sel. Think, my dear uncle, how grateful and kind mine. is his beart!

[Erit. Steph. And that he is a man of misfortune. Bona. Folly and misfortune are twins; nobody

St. ph. His kind attentions to Selina are singular. can tell one from the other. He has got footing with fresh gathered flowers, which he offers with

Sel. Every morning, I find him waiting for me here; and you seem all determined he shall keep such modest yet affectionate looks! it. Sel. I own I am interested in his favour. His

FIAMETTA returns with FRANCISCO; the latter, manners are so mild! Steph. His eyes so expressive!

poor in appearance, but clean; with a reserved, Sel. His behaviour so proper!

placid, and dignified air. Fiam. I'll be bound he's of genteel parentage! Bona. Come pear, friend. You understand his Bona. Who told you so?

gestures, Fia metta; so stay where you are. Fiam. Not he, himself for certain; because, poor Fiam. I intend it. creature! he is dumb. But only observe his sor- Bona. (To himself.) He has a manly form! a rowful looks. What it is I don't know, but there benevolent eye! (Aloud.) Sit down, sir. Leare us, is something on bis mind so

my children. (Francisco suddenly rises, as Stephano Bona. You are a fool!

and Selina offer to go; brings them back, and entreats Fiam. Fool, or not, I have served you faithfully they may remain.) Since he desires it, stay. There these three-and-twenty years; so you may turn me is pen, ink, and paper; when you cannot answer out of doors at last, if you please.

by signs, write ; but be strict to the truth. Bona. I!

Fran. (With dignity points to heaven and his Fiam. Yes; for, if you turp Francisco out, I'lỊ heart.) never enter them again.

bura. Who are you? (Francisco urites; and Sten

phano, siantling behind him, takes up the paper and Bona. If I have done my duty, I am greatly for. reads the answers.)

tunate. Fran, “A noble Roman!"

Rom. She is a lovely young lady; and you are Bon. Your family?

pot ignorant of my son's passion: to which your Fran. (Givs a sudden sign of Forbear! and urites.) duty towards your piece must make you a friend. “ Must not be known.'

I therefore come with open frankness, to propose Bona. Why?

their union. Fran. “It is disgraced."

Bona. And I, with equal candour, must tell you, B ni. By you?

I can give no answer. Fran. (Gesticulates.)

Rom. (Ilaughtily affecting surprise.) No answer! Fian. (interpreting.) No, no, no!

Bona Your rank and wealth make the proposal Bora. Who made you dumi?

flattering; but there is a question still more seFran. “The Algerines."

rious. Bona. How came you in their pover?

Rom. (In the sare tone.) What can that be? iran. "By treachery."

Bona. One which my niece only can resolve. Bona. Do you know the traitors!

Rom. Inexperience like hers should have no Fran. (Gesticulates.)

opinion. Fian. (Egerly.; He does! he does!

Bona. How, my lord! Drag the bride, by force, Bona. Why are they?

to that solemn altar, where, in the face of heaven, Fran. "The same who stabbed me among the she is to declare her choice is free? rocks." (A yeneral errression of horror.)

Rom. Mere ceremonies. Bona, Name them.

Bona. Ceremonies! Bethink yourself; lest marFran. (Gesticulates violently, denoting painful recol. riage become a farce, libertinism a thing to laugh lection; then writes.) Never.”

at, and adultery itself a finable offence! Bona. Are they known by me ?

Rom. Ay, ay; you are a moralist; & conscienFiam. (Interpre ing.) They are! they are !

tious man. Your : on is reported to have designs Bona. Are they rich ?

on Selina. Fran.“ Rich and powerful."

Bona. My lord! Bona. Astonishing! Your refusal to name them Rom. No anger: I speak as a friend. Her forgives strange suspicions. must know more: tell tune is tempting: but you disdain to be influenced. ine all, or quit my house.

The wealth and rank of our family(Music to express pain and disorder.) must be consulted.

Bona. Surpass mine. True; still my niece, I say, Enter PIERO.

Rom. Indeed! (Sternly.) Then my alliance, it

seems, is refused ? fier. Count Romaldi, sir.

Bona. By no means: I have neither the right to Fran. (Starts up struck with alarm.)

refuse nor to accept. If Selina Steph. So soon! Bona. Shew him up.

Re-enter SELINA, with a letter. Pier. He's here

(Similar music.) Sel. (Presenting it to Bona.) From the unfortunate

Francisco ROMALDI suddenly enters, as FRANCISCO is at

Rom. What! that strange fellow I met as I came tempting to pass the door: they start back at the

in ? sight of each other. Romaldi recorers himself; and Francisco, in an agony of mind, leaves the room.

Sel. (Aside.) He knows his name!

Rom. I forgot to ask hew he got admittance Bona. What is all this? Where is he gone? Call here? him back, Fiametta !

Sel. (With marked displeasure.) I should hope, my [Exeunt Fiametta and Stephano ; both regard- open to the unfortunate.

lord, there would always be some charitable door ing Romaldi with dislike.

Rom. (With courteous resentment.) I addressed Rom. (Ilith forced ease.) At length, my good your uncle, lovely lady. friend, I am here. I have long promised myself Bona. When you came in, he was relating his adthe pleasure of seeing you. Your hand. How ventures, which have been strange. hearty you look! And your lovely niece! Her Rom. (Retaining himself.) And are you, my friend, father's picture!

simple enough to believe such tales? Bona. Rather her mother's.

Sêl. What tales, my lord ? Rom. My son will adore her. In two days I ex Bona. The proofs are convincing! The mutilapect him here. I have serious business to commu tion he has suffered; the wounds he received, not nicate.

a league from hence; theSel. (To her uncle.) Permit me to retire, sir.

Rom. (Alarmed.) Did he name Bona. (Tenderly.) Go, my child; go.

Bona. Who? The monsters that gave them? Sel. (Aside.) Grant, oh, merciful heaven! I may No; but they are not unknown to him. not fall a sacrifice to avarice!

Rom. That - that is fortunate.

Bona. I was amazed to learn [Exit.

Rom. What? Bona. And now your pleasure, Count?

Bona That they are rich and powerful. But I Rom. Nay, I imagine you can guess my errand. forget: the story can have no interest for you. You know my friendship for my son, who, let me Rom. (Eagerly.) You mistake: -(recollecting tell you, is your great admirer. The care you have himself.) my feelings are as keen as yours. bestowed upon your niece, her education, mind, Bona. But what has he written? (Offers to open and nianners, and the faithful guardian you have the letter.) been, both of her wealth and person, well deserve Rom. If you will take my advice, you will not praise.

read. Doubtless, he has more complaints, more

tales, more favours to request. Be kind and hose, whatever you want; the house is at your com pitable; but do not be a dupe.

mand. Bona. Of which, I own, there is danger. Rom. (Seizing the letter which Bonamo carelessly

[Exit with looks of suspicion. Music of doubt holds.) Then let me guard you against it.

and terror. Sel. (After continually watching and suspecting Rom, What am I to think? How act? The arm Romaldi, snatches the letter back ; while he, remar king of Providence seems raised to strike! Am I become her suspicions, is confused) This letter, my lord, a coward? Shall I betray, rather than defend mywas given in charge to me: I promised to bring an self! I am not yet an idiot. answer; and I respectfully entreat my uncle will

(Threatening music.) read it.

Bona. Well, well. (Reads.) Friend of humanity, Enter the Count's Servant, MALVOGLIO; who obshould I remain, the peace of your family might be dis

serves his master. Music ceases. turbed. I therefore go; but earnestly entreat you will

Mal. Your lordship seems disturbed ? neither think me capable of falsehood nor ingrati ude.

Rom. Francisco is here.
Wherever I am, my wishes and my heart will be here.
Farewell."
He shall not go.

Mal. I saw him.
Rom. Why not? He owns the peace of your

· Rom. And did not your blood freeze?

Mal. I was sorry. family may be disturbed.

Rom. For what? Bono Fly, Selina, tell him I require, I request, him

Mal. That my dagger had missed its aim. to sleep here to-night, that I may speak with him

Rom. We are in his power. to-morrow.

Mal. He is in ourg. Rom. (Aside.) That must not be.

Rom. What are your thoughts? Sel. Thanks, my dear uncle! you have made me

Mal. What are yours, my lord ? happy.

Rom. Guess them.
[Exit in haste. Confused music. Mal. Executioners!

Rom. Infamy!
Enter PIERO.

Mal. Racks!

Rom. Maledictions! Rom. What now, Piero ?

Mal. From all which a blow may yet deliver us. Pier. Signor Montano is below. Rom. (Alarmed and aside.) Montano!

SELINA, entering and hiding behind the door, oppoBona. I'm very glad of it, for I wanted his ad

site to the chamber' of ROMALDI, overhears them. vice. (To Romaldi.) The best of men! Pier. Please to come up, sir.

Kom, 'Tis a damning crime ! Rom. With your permission, I will retire.

Mal. Were it the first.

Rom. Where is he to sleep?
Enter MONTANO.

Mal. There! (Music plays alarmingly, but piano when he enters, and

(Pointing to the chamber opposite to Romaldi's.) while he sings.)

Sel. (Behind the door.) They mean Francisco!

Sel. Obstinate fool! Since he will stayMon. I beg pardon, good sir, but-(Music loud

Mal. He must die. and discordant at the moment the eye of Montano

Sel. The monsters! caiches the figure of Romaldi; at which Montano starts

Rom. I heard a noise. with terror and indignation. He then assumes the eye

Mal. (Looking toward the folding-doors.) He's and attitude of menace, which Romaldi returns. The coming. music ceases.) Can it be possible ?

Rom. Let us retire and concertRom. (Returning his threatening looks.) Sir!

Mal. Then, at midnightMon. You here?

Rom. When he sleepsRom. Not having the honour of your acquaint

Mal. He'll wake no more! ance, I know not why my presence should please

[Exeunt to the chamber of the Count. or displease you.

(The stage dark: soft music, but expressing first Mon. (After a look of stern contempt at Romaldi, pain and alarm; then the successive feelings of the and addressing Bonamo.) Good night, my friend, I

scene. Fiametta enters, with Francisco, and a lamp, will see you to-morrow.

which she places on the table. She regards him with [Exit suddenly. compassion, points to his bed-room, then curtsies with

kindness and respect, and retires; he returning her (Hurrying music, but half piano.)

kindness. He seats himself as if to write, rises, takes Bona. (Calling.) Nay, butsignor! Signor

the lamp, looks round with apprehension, goes to the Montano! Are the people all mad? Fiametta !

chamber-door of Romaldi, starts auay with horror,

recovers himself, again places the lamp on the table, Fiam. (Without.) Sir!

and sits down to write. The door of Romaldi opens : Bona. Run, overtake him; and say, I must speak with him. (Music ceases.) Excuse me for Malvoglio half appears, watching Francisco; but, as

he turns, again retires.) going.

Enter, SELINA, who gently pulls the sleeve of Fran(To Romaldi.)

cisco: he starts : but, seeing her, his countenance erRom. Why in such haste? I have heard of this pands with pleasure. Montano: a credulous person; a relator of strange stories,

(Music pauses on a half close.) Bona. Signor Montano credulous! There is not Sel. (in a low voice.) Dare not to sleep! I will be in all Savoy a man of sounder understanding. on the watch! your life is in danger! Good night, my lord; I will send your servant:

(Exit. that door leads to your bed-room. Call for

(Music continues tremendous.)

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