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Chor. That hope would much rejoice us to partake This evil on the Philistines is fall'n: With thee; say, reverend sire, we thirst to hear. From whom could else a general cry be heard ?
Man I have attempted one by one the lords, The sufferers then will scarce molest us here; Either at home, or through the high street passing, From other hands we need not much to fear. With supplication prone and father's tears, What if, his eye-sight (for 10 Israel's God To accept of ransom for my son their prisoner. Nothing is hard) by miracle restord, Some much averse I found, and wondrous harsh, He now be dealing dole among his foes, Contemptuous, proud, set on revenge and spite ; And over heaps of slaughter'd walk his way? That part most reverenc'd Dagon and his priests : Man. That were a joy presumptuous to be thought Others more moderate seeming, but their aim
Chor. Yet God hath wrought things as incredible Private reward, for which both God and state For his people of old; what hinders now? They easily would set to sale: a third
Man. He can, I know, but doubt to think he will, More generous far and civil, who confess'd Yet hope would fain subscribe, and fempts belief. They had enough reveng'd ; having reduc'd A little stay will bring some notice hither. Their foe to misery beneath their fears,
Chor. Of good or bad so great, of bad the sooner; The rest was magnanimity to remit,
For evil news rides post, while good news bates. If some convenient ransom were propos’d.' And to our wish I see one hither speeding, What noise or shout was that? it tore the sky. An Hebrew, as I guess, and of our tribe.
Chor. Doubtless the people shouting to behold Their once great dread, captive, and blind before
[Enter MESSENGER.] them,
Mess. O whither shall I run, or which way fly Or at some proof of strength before them shown. The sight of this so horrid spectacle,
Man. His ransom, if my whole inheritance Which erst my eyes beheld, and yet behold, May compass it, shall willingly be paid
For dire imagination still pursues me. And number'd down: much rather I shall choose But providence or instinct of nature seems, To live the poorest in my tribe, than richest, Or reason though disturb'd, and scarce consulted, And he in that calamitous prison left.
To have guided me aright, I know not how, No, I am fix'd not to part hence without him. To thee first, reverend Manoah, and to these For his redemption all my patrimony,
My countrymen, whom here I knew remaining, If need be, I am ready to forego
As at some distance from the place of horror, And quit: not wanting him, I shall want nothing. So in the sad event too much concern'd.
Chor. Fathers are wont to lay up for their sons, Man. The accident was loud, and here before thee Thou for thy son art bent to lay out all ;
With rueful cry, yet what it was we hear not ; Sons wont to nurse their parents in old age, No preface needs, thou seest we long to know. Thou in old age car'st how to nurse thy son,
Mess. It would burst forth, but I recover breath Made older than thy age through eye-sight lost. And sense distract, to know well what I utter.
Man. It shall be my delight to tend his eyes, Man. Tell us the sum, the circumstance defer. And view him sitting in the house, ennobled
Mess. Gaza yet stands, but all her sons are fall'n, With all those high exploits by him achiev'd, All in a moment overwhelm'd and fall'n. And on his shoulders waving down those locks Man. Sad, but thou know'st to Israelites not saddest That of a nation arm’d the strength contain'd: The desolation of a hostile city.
(surfeit. And I persuade me, God had not permitted
Mess. Feed on that first: there may in grief be His strength again to grow up with his hair,
Man. Relate by whom. Garrison'd round about him like a camp
By Samson. Of faithful soldiery, were not his purpose
That still lessens To use him further yet in some great service; The sorrow, and converts it nigh to joy. Not to sit idle with so great a gift
Mess. Ah! Manoah, I refrain too suddenly
To utter what will come at last too soon;
Chor. Thy hopes are not ill-founded, nor seem vain Man. Suspense in news is torture, speak them out. Of his delivery, and the joy thereon
Mess. Take then the worst in brief, Samson is dead. Conceiv'd, agreeable to a father's love,
Man. The worst indeed, 0 all my hopes de In both which we, as next, participate.
feated Man. I know your friendly minds and -- what To free him hence! but death, who sets all free, Mercy of Heaven, what hideous noise was that, Hath paid his ransom now and full discharge. Horribly loud, unlike the former shout.
What windy joy this day had I conceiv'd Chor. Noise call you it, or universal groan, Hopeful of his delivery, which now proves As if the whole inhabitation perisha!
Abortive as the first-born bloom of spring Blood, death, and deathful deeds, are in that noise, Nipt with the lagging rear of winter's frost! Ruin, destruction at the utmost point.
Yet ere I give the reins to grief, say first, Man. Of ruin indeed methought I heard the noise: How died he ; death to life is crown or shame. Oh! it continues, they have slain my son.
All by him fell, thou say'st: by whom fell he ? Chor. Thy son is rather slaying them : that outcry What glorious hand gave Samson his death's wound ? From slaughter of one foe could not ascend.
Mess. Unwounded of his enemies he fell. (plain. Man. Some dismal accident it needs must be ; Man. Wearied with slaughter then, or how ? ex. What shall we do, stay here or run and see?
Mess. By his own hands. Chor. Best keep together here, lest, running Man.
Self-violence? what cause thither,
Brought him so soon at variance with himself We unawares run into danger's mouth.
Among his foes ?
Met from all parts to solemnize this feast.
Chor. O dearly-bought revenge, yet glorious !
To Israel, and now liest victorious Eye-witness of what first or last was done, Among thy slain self-kill'd, Relation more particular and distinct.
Not willingly, but tangled in the fold Mess. Occasions drew me early to this city ; Of dire necessity, whose law in death conjoin'd And, as the gates I enter'd with sun-rise,
Thee with thy slaughter'd foes, in number more The morning trumpets festival proclaim'd
Than all thy life hath slain before. [sublime, Through each high street: little I had dispatch'd, 1. Semichor. While their hearts were jocund and When all abroad was rumor'd that this day Drunk with idolatry, drunk with wine, Samson should be brought forth, to show the people And fat regorg'd of bulls and goats, Proof of his mighty strength in feats and games ; Chanting their idol, and preferring I sorrow'd at his captive state, but minded Before our living Dread who dwells Not to be absent at that spectacle.
In Silo, his bright sanctuary :
Among them he a spirit of frenzy sent,
To call in haste for their destroyer;
Their own destruction to come speedy upon them.
Insensate left, or to sense reprobate,
His fiery virtue rous'd
So virtue, given for lost,
Depress'd, and overthrown, as seem'd,
And lay erewhile a holocaust,
Man. Come, come; no time for lamentation now, At last with head erect thus cried aloud,
Nor much more cause ; Samson hath quit himself “ Hitherto, lords, what your commands impos'd Like Samson, and heroicly hath finish'd I have perform’d, as reason was, obeying,
A life heroic, on his enemies Not without wonder or delight beheld :
Fully reveng’d, hath left them years of mourning, Now of my own accord such other trial
And lamentation to the sons of Caphtor
To himself and father's house eternal fame;
With God not parted from him, as was feard,
Or knock the breast; no weakness, no contempt,
Let us go find the body where it lies
Soak'd in his enemies' blood; and from the stream The idle spear and shield were high up hung ;
The trumpet spake not to the armed throng;
As if they surely knew their sovran Lord was by.
His reign of peace upon the Earth began :
Smoothly the waters kist,
Whispering new joys to the mild ocean, And from his memory inflame their breasts Who now hath quite forgot to rave,
(wave. To matchless valor, and adventures high : While birds of calm sit brooding on the charmed The virgins also shall, on feastful days, Visit his tomb with flowers; only be wailing The stars, with deep amaze, His lot unfortunate in nuptial choice,
Stand fix'd in stedfast gaze, From whence captivity and loss of eyes.
Bending one way their precious influence ; Chor. All is best, though we oft doubt
And will not take their flight, What the unsearchable dispose
For all the morning light, Of highest Wisdom brings about,
Or Lucifer that often warnd them thence; And ever best found in the close,
But in their glimmering orbs did glow, Oft he seems to hide his face,
Until their Lord himself bespake, and bid them go. But unexpectedly returns, And to his faithful champion hath in place And, though the shady gloom Bore witness gloriously; whence Gaza mourns, Had given day her room, And all that band them to resist
The Sun himself withheld his wonted speed, His uncontrollable intent;
And hid his head for shame, His servants he, with new acquist
As his inferior flame Of true experience, from this great event
The new-enlighten'd world no more should need : With peace and consolation hath dismist.
He saw a greater Sun appear
(bear. And calm of mind, all passion spent.
Than his bright throne, or burning axletree, could
The shepherds on the lawn,
Sat simply chatting in a rustic row;
Full little thought they then,
That the mighty Pan
Was kindly come to live with them below; It was the winter wild,
Perhaps their loves, or else their sheep, While the Heaven-born child
Was all that did their silly thoughts so busy keep. All meanly wrapt in the rude manger lies ; Nature in awe to him,
When such music sweet Had doff 'd her gaudy trim,
Their hearts and ears did greet, With her great Master so to sympathize :
As never was by mortal finger strook ;
As all their souls in blissful rapture took :
The air, such pleasure loth to lose,
(close. She wooes the gentle air
With thousand echoes still prolongs each heavenly To hide her guilty front with innocent snow; And on her naked shame,
Nature that heard such sound, Pollute with sinful blame,
Beneath the hollow round The saintly veil of maiden white to throw; Of Cynthia's seat, the aery region thrilling, Confounded, that her Maker's eyes
Now was almost won Should look so near upon her foul deformities. To think her part was done,
And that her reign had here its last fulfilling ; But he, her fears to cease,
She knew such harmony alone Sent down the meek-ey'd Peace;
Could hold all Heaven and Earth in happier union. She, crown'd with olive-green, came softly sliding Down through the turning sphere,
At last surrounds their sight His ready harbinger,
A globe of circular light, With turtle wing the amorous clouds dividing; That with long beams the shamefac'd night array'd; And, waving wide her myrtle wand,
The helmed Cherubim, She strikes an universal peace through sea and land. And sworded Seraphim,
Are seen in glittering ranks with wings display'd, No war, or battle's sound,
Harping in loud and solemn quire, Was heard the world around :
With unexpressive notes, to Heaven's new-born Heir. Such music (as 'tis said)
The lonely mountains o'er, Before was never made,
And the resounding shore, But when of old the sons of morning sung, A voice of weeping heard and loud lament; While the Creator great
From haunted spring and dale, . His constellations set,
Edg'd with poplar pale, And the well-balanc'd world on hinges hung ; The parting genius is with sighing sent; And cast the dark foundations deep, [keep. With flower-inwoven tresses torn, (mourn. And bid the weltering waves their cozy channel The nymphs in twilight shade of tangled thickets Ring out, ye crystal spheres,
In consecrated earth, Once bless our human ears,
And on the holy hearth,
(plaint; If ye have power to touch our senses so ; The Lars, and Lemures, moan with midnight And let your silver chime
In urns, and altars round, Move in melodious time;
A drear and dying sound And let the base of Heaven's deep organ blow; Affrights the Flamens at their service quaint; And with your ninefold harmony,
And the chill marble seems to sweat, Make up full consort to the angelic symphony. While each peculiar Power foregoes his wonted seat. For, if such holy song
Peor and Baälim
Forsake their temples dim,
And mooned Ashtaroth,'
Heaven's queen and mother both,
The Libyc Hammon shrinks his horn, (mourn. And leave her dolorous mansions to the peering day. In vain the Tyrian maids their wounded Thammuz Yea, Truth and Justice then
And sullen Moloch, fled,
Hath left in shadows dread
In vain with cymbals' ring
They call the grisly king,
The brutish gods of Nile as fast,
Nor is Osiris seen
In Memphian grove or green,
(loud. The babe yet lies in smiling infancy,
Trampling the unshower'd grass with lowings That on the bitter cross
Nor can he be at rest Must redeem our loss;
Within his sacred chest; So both himself and us to glorify:
Nought but profoundest Hell can be his shroud; Yet first, to those ychain'd in sleep, [the deep; In vain with timbrellid anthems dark The wakeful trump of doom must thunder through The sable-stoled sorcerers bear his worshipt ark. With such a horrid clang
He feels from Judah's land As on mount Sinai rang,
[brake : The dreaded infant's hand, While the red fire and smouldering clouds out- The rays of Bethlehem blind his dusky eyn; The aged Earth, aghast
Nor all the gods beside With terror of that blast,
Longer dare abide, Shall from the surface to the centre shake; Not Typhon huge, ending in snaky twine : When, at the world's last session, [throne. Our babe, to show his Godhead true, (crew. The dreadful Judge in middle air shall spread his Can in his swaddling bands control the damned And then at last our bliss
So, when the Sun in bed,
Curtain'd with cloudy red,
The flocking shadows pale
Troop to the infernal jail, Not half so far casts his usurped sway;
Each fetter'd ghost slips to his several grave; And, wroth to see his kingdom fail,
And the yellow-skirted Fayes
[maze. Swinges the scaly horror of his folded tail. Fly after the night-steeds, leaving their moon-lov'd The oracles are dumb,
But see, the Virgin blest No voice or hideous hum
Hath laid her babe to rest; Runs through the arched roof in words deceiving. Time is, our tedious song should here have ending: A pollo from his shrine
Heaven's youngest-teemed star Can no more divine,
Hath fix'd her polish'd car, With hollow shriek the steep of Delphos leaving. Her sleeping Lord with handmaid lamp attending No nightly trance, or breathed spell,
And all about the courtly stable Inspires the pale-ey'd priests from the prophetic cell. Bright-harness'd angels sit in order serviceable.
EDMUND WALLER, born at Coleshill, Hertford- Waller had a brother-in-law, named Tomkyns, shire, in March, 1605, was the son of Robert Wal- who was clerk of the queen's council, and possessler, Esq., a gentleman of an ancient family and good ed great influence in the city among the warm fortune, who married a sister of the celebrated John loyalists. On consulting together, they thought it Hampden. The death of his father during his infancy would be possible to raise a powerful party, which left him heir to an estate of 35001. a year, at that might oblige the parliament to adopt pacific measperiod an ample fortune. He was educated first at ures, by resisting the payment of the taxes levied Eton, whence he was removed to King's College for the support of the war. About this time Sir in Cambridge. His election to parliament was as Nicholas Crispe formed a design of more dangerous early as between his sixteenth or seventeenth year; import, which was that of exciting the king's and it was not much later that he made his appear friends in the city to an open resistance of the auance as a poet: and it is remarkable that a copy of thority of parliament; and for that purpose he obverses which he addressed to Prince Charles, in his tained a commission of array from his majesty. eighteenth year, exhibits a style and character of this plan appears to have been originally unconversification as perfectly formed as those of his nected with the other; yet the commission was maturest productions. He again served in parlia- made known to Waller and Tomkyns, and the whole ment before he was of age; and he continued his was compounded into a horrid and dreadful plot. services to a later period. Not insensible of the Waller and Tomkyns were apprehended, when the value of wealth, he augmented his paternal fortune pusillanimity of the former disclosed the whole by marriage with a rich city heiress. In the long secret. "He was so confounded with fear," (says intermissions of parliament which occurred after Lord Clarendon,) “that he confessed whatever he 1628, he retired to his mansion of Beaconsfield, had heard, said, thought, or seen, all that he knew where he continued his classical studies, under the of himself, and all that he suspected of others, with. direction of his kinsman Morley, afterwards bishop out concealing any person, of what degree or qualiof Winchester; and he obtained admission to a ty soever, or any discourse which he had ever upon society of able men and polite scholars, of whom any occasion entertained with them.” The concluLord Falkland was the connecting medium. sion of this business was, that Tomkyns, and Cha
Waller became a widower at the age of twenty-loner, another conspirator, were hanged, and that five: he did not, however, spend much time in Waller was expelled the House, tried, and conmourning, but declared himself the suitor of Lady demned; but after a year's imprisonment, and a fine Dorothea Sydney, eldest daughter of the Earl of (of ten thousand pounds, was suffered to go into Leicester, whom he has immortalized under the exile. He chose Rouen for his first place of foreign poetical name of Saccharissa. She is described by exile, where he lived with his wife till his removal him as a majestic and scornful beauty; and he to Paris. In that capital he maintained the appear. seems to delight more in her contrast, the gentler ance of a man of fortune, and entertained hospitaAmoret, who is supposed to have been a Lady So- bly, supporting this style of living chiefly by the phia Murray. Neither of these ladies, however, sale of his wife's jewels. At length, after the lapse was won by his poetic strains; and, like another of ten years, being reduced to what he called his man, he consoled himself in a second marriage. rump jewel, he thought it time to apply for per
When the king's necessities compelled him, in mission to return to his own country. He obtained 1640, once more to apply to the representatives this license, and was also restored to his estate, of the people, Waller, who was returned for Ag. though now diminished to half its former rental. mondesham, decidedly took part with the members Here he fixed his abode, at a house built by him. who thought that the redress of grievances should self, at Beaconsfield; and he renewed his courtly precede a vote for supplies; and he made an ener- strains by adulation to Cromwell, now Protector, getic speech on the occasion. He continued during to whom his mother was related. To this usurper three years to vote in general with the Opposition the noblest tribute of his muse was paid. in the Long Parliament, but did not enter into all When Charles II. was restored to the crown, their measures. In particular, he employed much and past character was lightly regarded, the stains cool argument against the proposal for the abolition of that of Waller were forgotten, and his wit and of Episcopacy; and he spoke with freedom and poetry procured him notice at court, and admission severity against some other plans of the House. to the highest circles. He had also sufficient inIn fact, he was at length become a zealous loyalist terest to obtain a seat in the House of Commons, in his inclinations; and his conduct under the dif- in all the parliaments of that reign. The king's ficulties into which this attachment involved him gracious manners emboldened him to ask for the became a source of his indelible disgrace. A short vacant place of provost of Eton college, which was narrative will suffice for the elucidation of this granted him; but Lord Clarendon, then Lord Chanmatter.
cellor, refused to set the seal to the grant, alleging