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But say, my friend, what hear'st thou of Arpasia? | And arrogate a praise which is not ours. For there my thoughts, my every care is cen- Ar. With such unshaken temper of the soul tered.
To bear the swelling tide of prosperous fortune, Stra. Though on that purpose still I bent my is to deserve that fortune : in adversity search,
The mind grows tough by buffetting the tempest, Yet nothing certain could I gain, but this; Which, in success dissolving, sinks to ease, That in the pillage of the sultan's tent
And loses all her firmness. Some women were made prisoners, who this Tom. Oh, Axalla! morning
Could I forget I am a man as thou art, Were to be ofered to the emperor's view : Would not the winter's cold, or summer's heat, Their names and qualities, though oft enquiring, Sickness, or thirst, and hunger, all the train I could not learn.
Of nature's clamorous appetites, asserting shiun. Then must my soul still labour An equal right in kings and common men, Beneath uncertainty and anxious doubt, Reprove me daily ?-No-If I boast of aught, The mind's worst state. The tyrant's ruin gives Be it to have been Heaven's happy instrument,
The means of good to all my fellow-creatures: But a half ease.
This is a king's best praise.
For ever wait the emperor ! May our prophet Shall we not meet? Why hangs my heart thus Give him ten thousand thousand days of life, heavy,
And every day like this! The captive sultan,
Tam. Let him approach.
Enter Bajazer, and other Turkish Prisoners in Since that sweet hour is worth whole years of
chains, with a guard of Soldiers. pain. (Ereunt Moneses and Stratocles. When I survey the ruins of this field,
The wild destruction which thy fierce ambition SCENE II.—The inside of a magnificent Tent. Has dealt among mankind (so many widows Symphony of Warlike Nsusic. And helpless orphans has thy battle made,
That half our eastern world this day are mournEnter TAMERLANE, Axalla, Prince of Ta
ers), NAIS, Zama, Mirvan, Soldiers, and other At- Well may 1, in behalf of heaven and earth, tendants.
Demand from thee atonement for this wrong. Ar. From this auspicious day the Parthian Baj. Make thy demand to those that own thy
power! Shall date its birth of empire, and extend Know, I am still beyond it; and though Fortune Even from the dawning east to utmost Thule, (Curse on that changeling deity of fools !) The limits of its sway.
Ilas stript me of the train and pomp of greatPr. Nations unknown,
Is ever free and royal, and even now,
And dare thee to the use on't. This vile speechTam. It is too much: you dress me
ing, Like an usurper, in the borrowed attributes This after-game of words, is what most irks me; of injured Ileaven, Can we call conquest ours ? Spare that, and for the rest 'tis equal allShall man, this pigmy, with a giant's pride,
Be it as it may Vaunt of himself, and say, “Thus have I done Tam. Well was it for the world, this?"
When on their borders neighbouring princes Oh, vain pretence to greatness ! Like the moon, met, We borrow all the brightness which we boast, Frequent in friendly parle, by cool debates Dark in ourselves, and useless. If that hand, Preventing wasteful war : such should our meetThat rules the fate of battles, strike for us,
ing Crown us with fame, and gild our clay with ho- Have been, hadst thou but held in just regard nour,
The sanctity of leagues so often sworn to. 'Twere most ungrateful to disown the benefit, Canst thou believe thy prophet, or, what's more,
That power supreme, which made thee and thy | My angry thunder on the frighted world. prophet,
Tam. The world 'twould be too little for thy Will, with impunity, let pass that breach
pride : Of sacred faith given to the royal Greek? Thou wouldst scale heaven
Baj. Thou pedant talker! ha! art thou a king, Baj. I would :-Away! my soul Possest of sacred power, Heaven's darling attri- Disdains thy conference. bute,
Tum. Thou vain, rash thing, And dost thou prate of teagues, and oaths, and That, with gigantic insolence, hast dared prophets!
To lift thy wretched self above the stars, I hate the Greek (perdition on his name !) And mate with power Almighty-thou art fallen! As I do thee, and would have met you both, Baj. 'Tis false! I am not fallen from aught I As death does human nature, for destruction.
have been; T'am. Causeless to hate, is not of human kind: At least my soul resolves to keep her state, The savage brute, that haunts in woods remote And scorns to take acquaintance with ill-fortune. And desart wilds, tears not the fearful traveller, Tam. Almost beneath my pity art thou fallen; If hunger, or some injury, provoke not.
Since, while the avenging hand of Heaven is on Baj. Can a king want a cause, when empire
And presses to the dust thy swelling soul, Go on? What is he born for, but ambition? Fool-hardy, with the stronger thou contendest. It is his hunger, 'tis his call of nature,
To what vast heights had thy tumultuous temper The noble appetite which will be satisfied, Been hurried, if success had crowned thy wishes! And, like the food of gods, makes him immortal. Say, what had I to expect, if thou hádst conTum. Henceforth I will not wonder we were foes,
Baj. Oh, glorious thought! By Heaven I will Since souls, that differ so, by nature hate,
enjoy it, And strong antipathy forbids their union. Though but in fancy; imagination shall Baj. The noble fire, that warms me, does in- Make room to entertain the vast idea. deed
Oh! had I been the master but of yesterday, Transcend thy coldness. I am pleased we differ, The world, the world had felt me; and for thee, Nor think alike.
I had used thee, as thou art to me-a dog, Tam. No--for I think like man;
The object of my scorn and mortal hatred : Thou, like a monster, from whose baneful pre- I would have taught thy neck to know my weight,
And mounted from that footstool to my saddle : Nature starts back; and though she fixed her Then, when thy daily servile task was done, stamp
I would have caged ihee, for the scorn of slaves, On thy rough mass, and marked thee for man, Till thou hadst begged to die; and even that Now, conscious of her error, she disclaims thee, As formed for her destruction.
I had denied thee. Now thou know'st my mind, 'Tis true, I am a king, as thou hast been : And question me no farther. Honour and glory, too, have been my aim;
Tam. Well dost thou teach me, But, though I dare face death, and all the dan- What justice should exact from thee. Mankind, gers
With one consent, cry out for vengeance on thee; Which furious war wears in its bloody front, Loudly they call, to cut off this league-breaker, Yet would I chuse to fix my name by peace, This wild destroyer, from the face of earth. Bv justice, and by mercy, and to raise
Baj. Do it, and rid thy shaking soul at once My trophies on the blessings of mankind; Of its worst fear. Nor would I buy the empire of the world Tum. Why slept the thunder, With ruin of the people whom I sway,
That should have armed the idol deity, Or forfeit of my honour.
And given thee power, ere yester sun was set, Baj. Prophet, I thank thee.
To shake the soul of Tamerlane? Hadst thou an Damnation Couldst thou rob me of my glory, To dress up this tame king, this preaching der- To make thee feared, thou shouldst have proved vise?
it on me, Unfit for war, thou shouldst have lived secure Amidst the sweat and blood of yonder field, In lazy peace, and, with debating senates, When, through the tumult of the war, I sought Shared a precarious sceptre, sat tamely still,
thee, And let bold factions canton out thy power, Fenced in with nations. And wrangle for the spoils they robbed thee of; Baj. Curse upon the stars, Whilst I (curse on the power that stops my ar- That fated us to different scenes of slaughter! dour!)
Oh! could my sword have met thee !-
As now, been in my power, and held thy life
Dependent on my gift-Yes, Bajazet,
And all the heroes of thy sacred race,
This universal shipwreck of thy fortunes,
Enter ARPASIA. ness, And form thyself to manhood, I would bid thee Has gathered up this treasure for thy arms : Live, and be still a king, that thou mayest learn Nor even the victor, haughty Tamerlane What inan should be to man, in war remembering (By whose command once more thy slave beholds The common tie and brotherhood of kind.
thee), This royal tent, with such of thy domestics Denies this blessing to thee, but, with honour, As can be found, shall wait upon thy service; Renders thee back thy queen, thy beauteous bride. Nor will I use my fortune to demand
Baj Oh! had her eyes, with pity, seen my sorHard terms of peace, but such as thou mayst offer rows, With honour, I with honour may receive. Had she the softness of a tender bride,
[Tamerlane signs to an Oficer, who un- Heaven could not have bestowed a greater blessbinds Bajazet.
ing, Baj. Ha! sayst thou-no-our prophet's ven- And love had made amends for loss of empire. geance blast me,
But see, what fury dwells upon her charms! If thou shalt buy my friendship with thy empire. What lightning flashes from her angry eyes! Damnation on thee, thou smooth fawning talker! With a malignant joy she views my ruin : Give me again my chains, that I may curse thec, Even beauteous in her hatred, still she charms And gratify my rage: or, if thou wilt
me, Be a vain fool, and play with thy perdition, And awes my fierce tumultuous soul to love. Remember I'm thy foc, and hate thee deadly. Arp. And darest thou hope, thou tyrant! raş Thy folly on thy head!
visher! Tam. Be still my foe.
That Heaven has any joy in store for thee? Great minds, like İleaven, are pleased in doing Look back upon the sum of thy past life, good,
Where tyranny, oppression, and injustice, Though the ungrateful subjects of their favours Perjury, murders, swell the black account; Are barren in return : thy stubborn pride, Where lost Arpasia's wrongs stand bleeding fresh, That spurns the gentle office of humanity, Thy last recorded crime. But Heaven has found Shall in my honour own, and thy despite,
thee; I have done as I ought. Virtue still does At length the tardy vengeance has o'erta'en thee, With scorn the mercenary world regard, My weary soul shall bear a little longer Where abject souls do good, and hope reward : The pain of life, to call for justice on thee: ' Above the worthless trophies men can raise, That once complete, sink to the peaceful grave, She seeks not honours, wealth, nor airy praise, And lose the memory of my wrongs and thee. But with herself, herself the goddess pays. Baj. Thou railest! I thank thee for it-Be
[Ereunt Tamerlane, Aralla, Prince of Ta- perverse,
nais, Mirvan, Zama, and Attendants. And muster all the woman in thy soul : Baj. Come, Icad me to my dungeon! plunge Goad me with curses, be a very wife, me down,
That I may fling off this tame love, and hate thee, Deep from the bated sight of man and day, Where, under covert of the friendly darkness,
Enter MONESES. [Bajazet starting, My soul may brood, at leisure, o'er its anguish! Ha! Keep thy temper, heart! nor take alarm
Om. Our royal master would, with noble usage, At a slave's presence !
Sweet as the rosy morn she breaks upon me,
cold blood runs shivering to my heart, Baj. (Advancing towards him. Ha! ChrisAs at some phantom, that in dead of night,
tian! Is it well that we meet thus?
Put on this form of fury? Is it strange
We should meet here, companions in misfortune, Enter Haly.
The captives in one common chance of war? Arpasia !-IIaly!
Nor shouldst thou wonder that my sword has Ha. Oh, emperor! for whose hard fate our failed prophet,
Before the fortune of victorious Tamerlane,
When thou, with nations like the sanded shore, For while I sigh upon thy panting bosom,
Of evils overpast, and joys to come:
Where fate cuts off the very hopes of day, Baj. No, it is false;
And everlasting night and horror reign. Where is my daughter, thou vile Greek? Thou Mon. By all the tenderness and chaste endearhast
ments Betrayed her to the Tartar; or, even worse, Of our past love, I charge thee, my Arpasia, Pale with thy fear, didst lose her like a coward; To ease my soul of doubts! Give ine to know, And, like a coward now, would cast the blame At once, the utmost malice of my fate ! On fortune and ill stars.
Arp. Take then thy wretched share in all I Mon. Ha! saidst thou like a coward ?
suffer, What sanctity, what majesty divine
Still partner of my heart! Scarce hadst thou left Hast thou put on, to guard thee from my rage, The sultan's camp, when the imperious tyrant, That thus thou darest to wrong me?
Softening the pride and fierceness of his temper, Baj. Out, thou slave,
With gentle speech, made offer of his love. And know me for thy lord
Amazed, as at the thought of sudden death, Mon. I tell thee, tyrant,
I started into tears, and often urged When in the pride of power thou sat'st on high, (Though still in vain) the difference of our faiths. When like an idol thou wert vainly worshipped, At last, as flying to the utmost refuge, By prostrate wretches, born with slavish souls: With lifted hands and streaming eyes, I owned Even when thou wert a king, thou wert no more, The fraud; which when we first were made his Nor greater than Moneses; born of a race
prisoners, Royal, and great as thine. What art thou now, Conscious of my unhappy form, and fearing then?
For thy dear life, I forced thee to put on The fate of war has set thee with the lowest; Thy borrowed name of brother, mine of sister; And captives (like the subjects of the grave), Hiding beneath that veil the nearer tie Losing distinction, serve one common lord. Our mutual vows had made before the priest. Baj. Braved by this dog! Now give a loose to Kindling to raye at hearing of my story, rage,
* Then, be it so,' he cried: • Thinkest thou thy And curse thyself! curse thy false cheating pro- vows, phet!
Given to a slave, shall bar me from thy beauties? Ha! yet there is some revenge. Hear me, thou Then bade the priest pronounce the marriageChristian !
rites, Thou leftst that sister with me: Thou impostor! Which he performed; whilst, shrieking with desThou boaster of thy honesty! Thou liar !
pair, But take her to thee back.
I called, in vain, the powers of Heaven to aid me. Now to explore my prison-if it holds
Mon. Villain! Imperial villain! Oh, the coward! Another plague like this, the restless damned Awed by his guilt, though backed by force and (If muftis lie not) wander thus in hell;
power, From scorching Aames to chilling frosts they run, He durst not, to my face, avow his purpose; Then from their frosts to fires return again, But, in my absence, like a lurking thief, And only prove variety of pain.
Stole on my treasure, and at once undid me. [Ereunt Bajaret and Haly. Arp. Had they not kept me from the means Arp. Stay, Bajazet, I charge thee by my of death, wrongs !
Forgetting all the rules of Christian suffering, Stay and unfold a tale of so much horror I had done a desperate murder on my soul, As only fits thy telling. Oh, Mopeses ! Ere the rude slaves, that waited on his will, Mon. Why dost thou weep? Why this tem- Had forced me to his pestuous passion,
Mon. Stop thee there, Arpasia, That stops thy faultering tongue short on my And bar my fancy from the guilty scene ! name?
Let not thought enter, lest the busy mind Oh, speak! unveil this mystery of sorrow, Should muster such a train of monstrous images, And draw the dismal scene at once to sight! As would distract me. Oh! I cannot bear it. Arp. Thou art undone, lost, ruined, and un- Thou lovely hoard of sweets, where all my joys done!
Were treasured up, to have thee rifled thus! Mon. I will not think it is so, while I have Thus torn untasted from my eager wishes! thee;
But I will have thee from him. Tamerlane While thus it is given to hold thee in my arms; (The sovereign judge of equity on earth)
Shall do me justice on this mighty robber, Those distant beauties of the future state.
Oh! tell me, and sustain my failing faith.
mind I am the tyrant's wife.-Oh, fatal title! Can barely know, unable to describe it; And, in the sight of all the saints, have sworn, Imagine it is a tract of endless joys, By honour, womanhood, and blushing shame, Without satiety or interruption; To know no second bride-bed but my grave. Imagine it is to meet, and part no more. Mon. I swear it must not be, since still my Mon. Grant, gentle Heaven, that such may be eye
our lot! Finds thee as heavenly white, as angel pure, Let us be blest together. Oh, my soul! As in the earliest hours of life thou wert: Build on that hope, and let it arm thy courage, · Nor art thou his, but mine; thy first vow is to struggle with the storm that parts us now. mine,
Arp. Yes, my Moneses ! now the surges rise, Thy soul is mine.
The swelling sea breaks in between our barks, Arp. 0! think not, that the power
And drives us to our fate on different rocks, Of most persuasive eloquence can make me Farewell! My soul lives with thee. Forget I have been another's, been his wife. Mon. Death is parting, Now, by my blushes, by the strong confusion It is the last sad adieu 'twixt soul and body. And anguish of my heart, spare me, Moneses, But this is somewhat worse---my joy, my comNor urge my trembling virtue to the precipice.
fort, Shortly, oh! very shortly, if my sorrows All that was left in life, fleets after thee ; Divine 'aright, and Heaven be gracious to me, My aching sight hangs on thy parting beauties, Death shall dissolve the fatal obligation, Thy lovely eyes, all drowned in floods of sorrow. And give me up to peace, to that blest place, So sinks the setting sun beneath the waves, Where the good rest from care and anxious life. And leaves the traveller, in pathless woods, Mon. Oh, teach me, thou fair saint, like thee Benighted and forlorn—Thus, with sad eyes, to suffer!
Westward he turns, to mark the light's decay, Teach me, with hardy piety, to combat Till, having lost the last faint glimpse of day, The present ills: instruct my eyes to pass Cheerless, in darkness, he pursues his way. The narrow bounds of life, this land of sorrow,
[Ereunt Moneses and Arpasia, severally. And, with bold hopes, to view the realms beyond,
SCENE I.— The inside of the Royal Tent. Not voices, instruments, not warbling birds,
Not winds, not murmuring waters joined in conEnter Axalla, Selina, and Women Attendants.
cert, Ar. Can there be aught in love beyond this Not tuneful nature, not the according spheres, proof,
Utter such harmony, as when my Selima, This wondrous proof, I give thee of my faith? With down-cast looks and blushes, said-I To tear thee from my bleeding bosom thus !
love. To rend the strings of life, to set thee free, Sel. And yet thou say'st, I am a niggard to And yield thee to a cruel father's power!
thee! Foe to my hopes! What canst thou pay me I swear the balance shall be held between us, back,
And love be judge, if, after all the tenderness, What but thyself, thou angel! for this fondness? Tears and confusion of my virgin soul,
Sel. Thou dost upbraid me, beggar as I am, Thou shouldst complain of aught, unjust Axalla! And urge me with my poverty of love.
Ar. Why was I ever blest !--Why is rememPerhaps thou think'st, 'tis nothing for a maid
brance To struggle through the niceness of her sex, Rich with a thousand pleasing images The blushes and the fears, and own she loves. Of past enjoyments, since 'tis but plague to me! Thou think'st 'tis nothing for my artless heart When thou art mine no more, what will it ease me To own my weakness, and confess thy triumph. To think of all the golden minutes past, Ar. Oh! yes I own it; my charmed ears ne'er To think that thou wert kind, and I was happy? knew
But like an angel fallen from bliss, to curse A sound of so much rapture, so much joy. My present state, and mourn the heaven I've lost.