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Lys. I neither hope nor ask a pardon of him; But if he should restore my sword, I would With a new violence run against my rival.

Alex. Sure we at last shall conquer this fierce lion:

Hence from my sight, and bear him to a dungeon!
Perdiccas, give this lion to a lion;

None speak for him! fly! stop his mouth, away!
Cly. The king's extremely moved.
Eum. I dare not speak.

Cly. This comes of love and women; 'tis all madness;

Yet were I heated now with wine, I should
Be preaching to the king for this rash fool.
Ålex. Come hither, Clytus, and my dear He-

Lend me your arms, help, for I'm sick on the sudden.

I fear betwixt Statira's cruel love,
And fond Roxana's arts, your king will fall.
Cly. Better the Persian race were all undone.
Heph. Look up, my lord, and bend not thus
your head,

As if you'd leave the empire of this world,
Which you with toil have won.

Alex. Would I had not!

There's no true joy in such unwieldy fortune.
Eternal gazers lasting troubles make,
All find my spots, but few my brightness take.
Stand off, and give me air-

Why was I born a prince, proclaimed a god,
Yet have no liberty to look abroad?
Thus palaces in prospect bar the eye,
Which, pleased and free, would o'er the cot-
tage fly,

O'er flowery lands to the gay distant sky.
Farewell, then, empire, and the racks of love;
By all the gods, I will to wilds remove;
Stretched like a Sylvan god on grass lie down,
And quite forget, that e'er I wore a crown.






Par. Ah, my Lysimachus, where are you going?

Whither? to be devoured? O barbarous prince!

Eum. FAREWELL, brave spirit! when you come Could you expose your life to the king's rage,


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And yet remember mine was tied to yours?
Lys. The gods preserve you ever from the ills,
That threaten me: Live, madam, to enjoy
A nobler fortune, and forget this wretch.
I ne'er had worth, nor is it possible
That all the blood, which I shall lose this day,
Should merit this rich sorrow from your eyes.

Par. The king, I know, is bent to thy destruc

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A haughty vengeance gathers on her brow. Thess. Peace! they have raised her to their ends; observe.

Enter ROXANA, CASSANDER, POLYPERCHON. Ror. O you have ruined me, I shall be mad : Said you so passionately? is it possible? So kind to her, and so unkind to me?

Cass. More than your utmost fancy can invent. He swooned thrice at hearing of her vow, And when our care as oft had brought back life, He drew his sword, and offered at his breast. Pol. Then railed at you with such unheard of curses!

Ror. Away, begone, and give a whirlwind


Or I will blow you up like dust; avaunt!
Madness but meanly represents my toil.
Roxana and Statira, they are names
That must for ever jar: eternal discord,
Fury, revenge, disdain, and indignation
Tear my swollen breast, make way for fire and

My brain is burst, debate and reason quenched,
The storm is up, and my hot bleeding heart
Splits with the rack, while passions, like the

Rise up to heaven, and put out all the stars.
What saving hand, or what a mighty arm
Can raise me sinking?

Cass. Let your own arm save you! 'Tis in your power, your beauty is almighty: Let all the stars go out, your eyes can light them. Wake then, bright planet, that should rule the world,

Wake, like the moon, from your too long eclipse, And we, with all the instruments of war, Trumpets and drums, will help your glorious labour.

Pol. Put us to act, and with a violence, That fits the spirit of a most wronged woman: Let not Medea's dreadful vengeance stand A pattern more, but draw your own so fierce, It may for ever be original.

For there is nothing you have said of me,
But comes far short, wanting of what I am.
When in my nonage I at Zogdia lived,
Amongst my she companions I would reign;
Drew them from idleness, and little arts
Of coining looks, and laying snares for lovers,
Broke all their glasses, and their tires tore,
Taught them, like Amazons, to ride and chase
Wild beasts in deserts, and to master men.

Cass. Her looks, her words, her every motion

fires me.

Ror. But when I heard of Alexander's con


How with a handful he had millions slain, Spoiled all the east, their queens his captives made,

Yet with what chastity, and godlike temper,
He saw their beauties, and with pity bowed;
Methought I hung upon my father's lips,
And wished him tell the wondrous tale again:
Left all my sports, the woman now returned,
And sighs uncalled would from my bosom fly;
And all the night, as my Adraste told me,
In slumbers groaned, and murmured Alexander,
Cass. Curse on the name, hut I will soon re-

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Though hurled to earth by this disdainful Jove,
I will rebound to my own orb of fire,
And with the wreck of all the heavens expire.
Cass. Now you appear yourself;

'Tis noble anger.

Rox. May the illustrious blood, that fills my womb,

And ripens to be perfect godhead born,
Come forth a fury; may Barsina's bastard
Tread it to hell, and rule as sovereign lord,
When I permit Statira to enjoy

Roxana's right, and strive not to destroy.

Enter SYSIGAMBIS, STATIRA, in mourning. Cass. Behold her going to fulfil her vow; Old Sysigambis, whom the king engaged, Resists and awes her with authority.

Ror. 'Twas rashly vowed indeed, and I should pity her.

Sys. O my Statira, how has passion changed thee! Think if thou drive the king to such extremes, What in his fury may he not denounce Against the poor remains of lost Darius?

Stat. I know, I know he will be kind to you,
And to my mourning sister for my sake;
And tell him, how with my departing breath,
I railed not, but spoke kindly of his person,
Nay wept to think of our divided loves,
And sobbing sent, at last, forgiveness to him.
Rox. Grant, heaven, some case to this distract-
ed wretch!

Let her not linger out a life in torments,
Be these her last words, and at once dispatch her.
Sys. No, by the everlasting fire I swear,
By my Darius' soul, I never more
Will dare to look on Alexander's face,
If you refuse to see him.

Rox. Curse on that cunning tongue, I fear her


Cass. No, she's resolved.

Stat. I cast me at your feet,

To bathe them with my tears; or, if you please,
I'll let you life, and wash them with my blood,
But still conjure you not to rack my soul,
Nor hurry my wild thoughts to perfect madness.
Should now Darius' awful ghost appear,
And my pale mother stand heseeching by,
I would persist to death, and keep my vow.
Ror. She shews a certain bravery of soul,
Which I should praise in any but my rival,
Sys. Die then, rebellious wretch! thou art not


That soft beloved, nor durst thou share my blood.
Go hide thy baseness in the lonely grot,
Ruin thy mother, and thy royal house,
Pernicious creature! shed the innocent
Blood, and sacrifice to the king's wrath
The lives of all thy people; fly, begone,
And hide thee, where bright virtue never shone:
The day will shun thee, nay the stars, that view
Mischiefs and murders, deeds to thee not new,

Will start at this-Go, go, thy crimes deplore,
And never think of Sysigambis more. [Exeunt.
Ror. Madam, I hope you will a queen for-

Roxana weeps to see Statira grieve.
How noble is the brave resolve you make,
To quit the world for Alexander's sake?
Vast is your mind, you dare thus greatly die,
And yield the king to one so mean as I:
'Tis a revenge will make the victor smart,
And much I fear your death will break his heart.
Stat. You counterfeit, I fear, and know, too

How much your eyes all beauties else excel :
Roxana, who, though not a princess born,
In chains could make the mighty victor mourn.
Forgetting power when wine had made him warm,
And senseless, yet even then you knew to charm:
Preserve him by those arts, that cannot fail,
While I the loss of what I loved bewail.

Ror. I hope your majesty will give me leave To wait you to the grove, where you would grieve;

Where like the turtle, you the lose will moan
Of that dear mate, and murmur all alone.

Stat. No, proud triumpher o'er my falling


Thou shalt not stay to fill me with my fate:
Go to the conquest, which your wiles may boast,
And tell the world you left Statira lost.
Go seize my faithless Alexander's hand,
Both hand and heart were once at my com-

Grasp his loved neck, die on his fragrant breast,
Love han like me, whose love can't be exprest,
He must be happy, and you more than blest;
While I in darkness hide me from the day,
That with my mind I may his form survey,
And think so long, till I think life away.

Roa. No, sickly virtue, no、

Thou shalt not think, nor thy love's loss bemoan,
Nor shall past pleasures through thy fancy run;
That were to make thee blest as I can be:
But thy no-thought I must, I will decree.
As thus, I'll torture thee till thou art mad,
And then no thought to purpose can be had.,
Stut. How frail, how cowardly is woman's


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But when to his sought bed, thy wandring air
Shall for the happiness it wished repair,
How will it groan to find thy rival there?
How ghastly wilt thou look, when thou shalt see,
Through the drawn curtains, that great man and


Wearied with laughing, joys shot to the soul, While thou shalt grinning stand, and gnash thy teeth, and howl?

Stat. O barbarous rage! my tears I cannot keep,

But my full eyes in spite of me will weep.
Ror. The king and I in various pictures drawn,
Clasping each other, shaded o'er with lawn,
Shall be the daily presents I will send,
To help thy sorrow to her journey's end.
And when we hear at last thy hour draws nigh,
My Alexander, my dear love and I,
Will come and hasten on thy lingering fates,
And smile and kiss thy soul out through the grates.
Stat. 'Tis well, I thank thee; thou hast waked

a rage,

Whose boiling now no temper can assuage:
I meet thy tides of jealousy with more,
Dare thee to duel, and dash thee o'er and o'er.
Ror. What would you dare?
Stat. Whatever you dare do,

My warring thoughts the bloodiest tracts pursue;
I am by love a fury made, like you:
Kill or be killed, thus acted by despair.

Ror. Sure the disdained Statira does not dare?
Stat. Yes, towering proud Roxana, but I dare.
Ror. I tower indeed o'er thee;

Like a fair wood, the shade of kings I stand;
While thon, sick weed, do but infest the land.
Stat. No, like an ivy I will curl thee round,
Thy sapless trunk of all its pride confound,
Then, dry and withered, bend thee to the ground.
What Sysigambis' threats, objected fears,
My sister's sighs, and Alexander's tears,
Could not effect, thy rival rage has done :
My soul, whose start at breach of oaths begun,
Shall to thy ruin violated run.

I'll see the king in spite of all I swore,

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For one poor fault so carly should remove,
And fall a martyr to the god of love.
Ror. Is then Roxana's love and life so poor,
That for another you can chuse to die,
Rather than live for her? what have I done?
How am I altered since at Susa last

You swore, and sealed it with a thousand kisses,
Rather than lose Roxana's smallest charm,
You would forego the conquest of the world?
Alex. Madam, you best can tell what magic

Me to your charms, but let it not be told
For your own sake; take that conquered world,
Dispose of crowns and scepters as you please,
Let me but have the freedom of an hour,
To make account with this wronged innocence.
Stat. You know, my lord, you did commit a

I ask but this, repeat your crime no more.
Alex. O never, never.

Rox. Am I rejected, then?

Aler. Exhaust my treasures,

Take all the spoils of the fair conquered Indies;
But, for the ease of my afflicted soul,
Go, where I never may behold thee more.

Rox. Yes, I will go, ungrateful as thou art,
Bane to my life! thou torment of my days,
Thou murderer of the world! for, as thy sword
Hath cut the lives of thousand thousand men,
So will thy tongue undo all woman-kind.
But I'll be gone; this last disdain hath cured me,
And I am now grown so indifferent,

I could behold you kiss without a pang,
Nay, take a torch and light you to your bed:
But do not trust me, no, for if you do,
By all the furies and the flames of love,
By love, which is the hottest burning hell,
I'll set you both on fire to blaze for ever. [Exit.

Stat. O Alexander, is it possible? Good gods, That guilt can shew so lovely!-yet I pardon, Forgive thee all, by thy dear life I do.

Aler. Ha, pardon! saidst thou, pardon me? Sys. Now all thy mother's blessings fall upon thee,

Though curst, that thou mayest never see him My best, my most beloved, my own Statira!

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Per. Madam, your royal mother, and the king.
Aler. O my Statira! O my angry dear!
Turn thine eyes on me, I would talk to them:
What shall I say to work upon thy soul?
Where shall I throw me? whither shall I fall?
Stat. For me you shall not fall.
Alex. For thee I will,

Before thy feet I'll have a grave dug up,
And perish quick, be buried straight alive:
Give but, as the earth grows heavy on me,
A tender look, and a relenting word,
Say but, 'twas pity that so great a man,
Who had ten thousand deaths in battles 'scaped,

Aler. Is it then true, that thou hast pardoned me?

And is it given me thus to touch thy hand,
And fold thy body in my longing arms?
To gaze upon thy eyes, my happier stars,
To taste thy lip, and thy dear balmy breath,
While every sigh comes forth so fraught with

'Tis incense to be offered to a god.

Stat. Yes, dear impostor, 'tis most true, that I Have pardoned thee; and 'tis as true, that while I stand in view of thee, thy eyes will wound, Thy tongue will make me wanton as thy wishes; And while I feel thy hand, my body glows: Therefore be quick, and take your last adieu, These your last sighs, and these your parting tears: Farewell, farewell, a long and last farewell!

Alex. O my Hephestion, bear me, or I sink.
Stat. Nay, you may take-Heaven, how my
heart throbs!

may, you may, if yet you think me worthy,
Take from these trembling lips a parting kiss.
Alex. No, let me starve first-why, Statira,

What is the meaning of all this?-O gods!
I know the cause, my working brain divines-
You'll say you pardoned, but with this reserve,
Never to make me blest as I have been,
To slumber by the side of that false man,
Nor give a heaven of beauty to a devil :
Think you not thus? Speak, madam.

Sys. She is not worthy, son, of so much sorrow:
Speak comfort to him, speak, my dear Statira,
I ask thee by those tears: Ah! canst thou e'er
Pretend to love, yet with dry eyes behold him?
Alex. Silence more dreadful than severest


Would she but speak, though death, eternal exile
Hung on her lips, yet, while her tongue pronoun-


There must be music even in my undoing.

Stat. Still, my loved lord, I cannot see you thus;


Nor can I ever yield to share
OI shall find Roxana in your arms,
And taste her kisses left upon your lips.

Aler. Yes, obstinate, I will, madam, you shall,
You shall, in spite of this resistless passion,
Be served; but you must give me leave to think
You never loved.-O could I see you thus!
Hell has not half the tortures that you raise.
Cly. Never did passions combat thus before.
Alex. O I shall burst,

Unless you give me leave to rave a while.

Sys. Yet e'er destruction sweep us both away,
Relent, and break through all to pity him!
Alex. Yes, I will shake this Cupid from my


If all the rages of the earth would fright him;
Drown him in the deep bowl of Hercules;
Make the world drunk, and then, like olus,
When he gave passage to the struggling winds,
I'll strike my spear into the reeling globe
To let it blood, set Babylon in a blaze,
And drive this god of flames with more consu-
ming fire.

Stat. My presence will but force him to

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But first kneel with me, all my soldiers kneel!

[All kneel. Yet lower-prostrate to the earth.-Ah! mother, what,

Will you kneel too? Then let the sun stand still,
To see himself out-worshipped; not a face
Be shewn, that is not washed all o'er in tears,
But weep as if you here beheld me slain.
Sys. Hast thou a heart? or art thou savage

But if this posture cannot move your nercy,
I never will speak more.

Alex. O my Statira!

I swear, my queen, I'll not out-live thy hate,
My soul is still as death-But one thing more,
Pardon my last extremities-the transports
Of a deep wounded breast, and all is well.

Stat. Rise, and may heaven forgive you all,
like me.

Alex. You are too gracious.-Clytus, bear me
hence ;

When I am laid in earth, yield her the world.
There's something here heaves, as cold as ice,
That stops my breath-Farewell, oh gods! for


Stat. Hold off, and let me run into his arms,
My dearest, my all love, my lord, my king!
You shall not die, if that the soul and body
Of thy Statira can restore thy life:
Give me thy wonted kindness.

Alex. O the killing joy!

O extasy! my heart will burst my breast,
To leap into thy bosom; but, by heaven,
This night I will revenge me of thy beauties,
For the dear rack I have this day endured;
For all the sighs and tears that I have spent,
I'll have so many thousand burning loves;
So swell thy lips, so fill me with thy sweetness,
Thou shalt not sleep nor close thy wandring eyes:.
The smiling hours shall all be loved away,
We'll surfeit all the night, and languish all the

Stat. Nor shall Roxana

Aler. Let her not be named

O mother! how shall I requite your goodness!
And you, my fellow warriors, that could weep
For your lost king-But I invite you all,
My equals in the throne as in the grave,
Without distinction to the riot come,
ex-To the king's banquet-

Alex. I charge ye, stay her!
For if she pass, by all the hell I feel,
Your souls, your naked ghosts, shall wait upon

O turn thee! turn! thou barbarous brightness,

Hear my last words, and see my utmost pang:

Cly. I beg your majesty
Would leave me out.

Alex. None, none shall be excused;
All revel out the day, 'tis my command.
Gay as the Persian god our self will stand,
With a crowned goblet in our lifted hand.
Young Ammon and Statira shall go round,
While antic measures beat the burdened ground,
And to the vaulted skies our clangors sound.

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