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But 'twere prophane to think of power in love. Evades my power the blessing to forget Dear as my passion makes you, I decline
you. Possession of her charms, whose heart's another's. Zara—thy tears were formed to teach disdain, You will not find me a weak, jealous lover, That softness can disarm it.- _Tis decreed, By coarse reproaches, giving pain to you, I must for ever love-but from what cause, And shaming my own greatness. Wounded If thy consenting heart partakes my fires, deeply,
Art thou reluctant to a blessing meant me? Yet shunning and disdaining low complaint, Speak! Is it levity- -or, is it fear? I come to tell you
Fear of a power that, but for blessing thee, Zar. Give my trembling heart
Had, without joy, been painful. Is it artifice? A moment's respite
Oh! spare the needless pains Art was not Osm. That unwilling coldness
made Is the just prize of your capricious lightness; For Zara.Art, however innocent, Your ready arts may spare the fruitless pains Looks like deceiving- -I abhorred it ever. Of colouring deceit with fair pretences ;
Zar. Alas! I have no art; not even enough I would not wish to hear your slight excuses; To hide this love, and this distress you give me. I cherish ignorance, to save my blushes.
Osm. New riddles ! Speak with plainness to Osman in every trial shall remember
my soul; That he is emperor. Whate'er I suffer,
What canst thou mean? 'Tis due to honour that I give up you,
Zar. I have no power to speak it. And to my injured bosom take despair,
Osm. It it some secret dangerous to my state? Rather than shamefully possess you sighing, Is it some Christian plot grown ripe against me? Convinced those sighs were never meant for Zar. Lives there a wretch so vile as to betray Go, madam—you are free from Osman's pow- Osman is blessed beyond the reach of fear:
Fears and misfortunes threaten only Zara., Expect no wrongs, but see his face no more. Osm. Why threaten Zara? 2ar. At last, 'tis come—the feared, the mur- Zar. Permit me, at your feet, dering moment
Thus trembling, to beseech a favour from you. Is come—and I am cursed by earth and heaven! Osm. A favour! Oh, you guide the will of [Throws herself on the ground.
Osman. If it is true that I am loved no more
Zar. Ah! would to Heaven our duties were
united, Osm. It is too true, my fame requires it; Firm as our thoughts and wishes ! But this day, It is too true that I unwilling leave you : But this one sad, unhappy day, permit me, That I at once renounce you and adore
Alone, and far divided from your eye, Zara! -you weep!
To cover my distress, lest you, too tender, Zar. If I am doomed to lose you,
Should see and share it with me—from to-morIf I must wander o'er an empty world,
row, Unloving and unloved-Oh! yet, do justice I will not have a thought concealed from you. To the afficteddo not wrong me doubly : Osm. What strange disquiet, from what stranPunish me, if it is needful to your peace, But say not, I deserved it—This, at least,
Zar. If I am really blessed with Osman's love, Believe for not the greatness of your soul
He will not then refuse this humble prayer. Is truth more pure and sacred- no regret
Osm. If it must be, it must,—Be pleased, my Can touch my bleeding heart, for I have lost
will The rank of her you raise to share your throne. Takes purpose from your wishes; and consent I know I never ought to have been there; Depends not on my choice, but your decree: My fate and my defects require I lose you. Go-but remember how he loves, who thus But ah! my heart was never known to Osman. Finds a delight in pain, because you give it. May Heaven, that punishes, for ever hate me, Zar. It gives me more than pain to make you If I regret the loss of aught but you.
fcel it. Osm. Rise-rise, this means not love?
-can you, Zara, leave me? Zar. Strike- -Strike me, Heaven !
Zar. Alas, my lord!
[Exit Zara. Osm. What! is it love to force yourself to Osm. [Alone. It should be yet, methinks, too wound
soon to fly me! The heart you wish to gladden? But I find Too soon, as yet, to wrong my easy
faith. Lovers least know themselves; for I believed, The more I think, the less I can conceive, That I had taken back the power I gave you; What hidden cause should raise such strange deYet see! you did but weep, and have resumed
Now, when her hopes have wings, and every wish Proud as I am I must confess, one wish Is courted to be lively! When I love,
ger cause !
And joy and empire press her to their bosom; Hell! tortures ! death! and woman !- What, When not alone beloved, but even a lover :
Orasmin! Professing and accepting; blessed and blessing;. Are we awake? Heardst thou? Can this be Zara? To see her eyes, through tears, shine mystic love! Oras. Would I had lost all sense--for what I 'Tis madness! and I were unworthy power,
heard To suffer longer the capricious insult !
Has covered my afflicted heart with horror,
Oras. Monstrous treason!
Remain insensible-You, who but now, To expiate, by a length of soft indulgence, From the most slight suspicion, felt such pain, The transports of a rage, which still was love. Must, in the horror of so black a guilt, Henceforth, I never will suspect her false; Find an effectual cure, and banish love. Nature's plain power of charming dwells about Osm. Seek her this instant-go, Orasmin, fly her,
Shew her this letter-bid her read and tremble : And innocence gives force to every word. Then, in the rising horrors of her guilt, I owe full confidence to all she looks,
Stab her unfaithful breast, and let ber die. For in her eyes shines truth, and every beam Say, while thou strikest- Stay, stay, return Shoots confirmation round her. I remarked,
and pity me; Even while she wept, her soul a thousand times I will think first a moment–Let that Christian Sprung to her lips, and longed to leap to mine, Be strait confronted with her-Stay--I will, With honest, ardent utterance of her love. I will-I know not what- -Would I were Who can possess a heart so low, so base,
dead! To look such tenderness, and yet have none ? Would I had died, unconscious of this shame!
Oras. Never did prince receive so bold a Enter MELIDOR with ORASMIN.
. This letter, great disposer of the world! Osm. See here detected this infernal secret! Addressed to Zara, and in private brought, This fountain of her tears, which my weak heart Your faithful guards this moment intercepted, Mistook for marks of tenderness and pain! And humbly offer to your sovereign eye. Why! what a reach has woman to deceive! Osm. Come nearer, give it me.-To Zara! Under how fine a veil of grief and fear Rise.
Did she propose retirement 'till to-morrow! Bring it with speed -Shame on your flattering And I, blind dotard ! gave the fool's consent, distance
Soothed her, and suffered her to go ! She [Advancing, and snatching the letter. parted, Be honest- -and approach me like a subject, Dissolved in tears; and parted to betray me! Who serves the prince, yet not forgets the man. Oras. Reflection serves but to confirm ber Mel. One of your Christian slaves, whom late guilt. your bounty
At length resume yourself; awaken thought ; Released from bondage, sought with heedful Assert your greatness; and resolve like Osman. guile,
Osm. Nerestan, too_Was this the boasted Unnoticed to deliver it.- -Discovered,
honour He waits, in chains, his doom from your decree. Of that proud Christian, whom Jerusalem Osm. Leave me! I tremble, as if something Grew loud in praising ! whose half-envied virtue fatal
I wondered at myself; and felt disdain Were meant me from this letter- -should 1 To be but equal to a Christian's greatness! read it?
And does he thank me thus ? base infidel! Oras. Who knows but it contains some happy Monest, pretending, pious, praying villain? truth,
Yet Zara is a thousand times more base, That may remove all doubts, and calm your heart? More hypocrite, than he. A slave! a wretch! Osm. 'Be it as 'twill-it shall be read-my So low, so lost, that even the vilest labours, hands
In which he lay condemned, could never sink hira Have apprehension that out-reaches mine! Beneath his native; infamy-Did she not know Why should they tremble thus?- 'tis done- What I have done, what suffered for her sake?
(Opens the letter. Oras. Could you, my gracious lord, forgive my Fate, be thy call obeyed Orasmin, mark
You would • There is a secret passage toward the mosque; Osm. I know it—thou art right-I'll see her That way you might escape ; and unperceived, I'll tax her in thy presence ;-i'll upbraid her Fly your observers, and fulfil our hope; I'll let her learn-Go find, and bring her to be. Despise the danger, and depend on me,
Oras. Alas, my lord ! disordered as you are, • Who wait you, but to die if you deceive. What can you wish to say?
Osm. I know not, now
Learn, cruel! learn, that this afflicted heart, But I resolve to see her-lest she think
This heart, which Heaven delights to prove by, Her falsehood has, perhaps, the power to grieve tortures,
Did it not love, has pride and power to shun you. Oras. Believe me, sir, your threatenings, your Alas! you will not know me! what have I complaints,
To fear, but that unhappy love you question ? What will they all produce, but Zara's tears That love, which only could outweigh the shame To quench this fancied anger! Your lost heart, I feel, while I descend to weep my wrongs. Seduced against itself, will search but reasons I know not whether Heaven, that frowns upon To justify the guilt, which gives it pain :
me, Rather conceal from Zara this discovery; Has destined my unhappy days for yours; And let some trusty slave convey the letter, But, be my fate or blessed or cursed, I swear Reclosed, to her own hand—then shall you learn, By honour, dearer even than life or love, Spite of her frauds, disguise, and artifice, Could Zara be but mistress of herself, The firmness, or abasement of her soul.
She would, with cold regard, look down on kings, Osm. Thy counsel charms me! We'll about it And, you alone excepted, fly them all.
Would you learn more, and open all my heart? I will be some recompence, at least, to see Know, then, that spite of this renewed injustice, Her blushes when detected.
I do not-cannot wish to love you less : Oras. Oh, my lord!
That, long before you looked so low as Zara, I doubt you in the trial ! for your heart- She gave her heart to Osman; yours, before Osm. Distrust me not-my love, indeed, is Your benefits had bought her, or your eye weak,
Had thrown distinction round her; never had, But honour and disdain more strong than Zara. Nor ever will acknowledge other lover :Here, take this fatal letter-chuse a slave, And to this sacred truth, attesting Heaven, Whom yet she never saw, and who retains I call thy dreadful notice! If my heart His tried fidelity—Dispatch—begone
Deserves reproach, 'tis for, but not from, Osman, [Erit Orasmin.
Osm. What! does she yet presume to swear Now, whither shall I turn my eyes and steps,
sincerity! The surest way to shun her: and give time Oh, boldness of unblushing perjury ! For this discovering trial ?—Heaven! she's here! Had I not seen, had I not read such proof,
Of her light falsehood as extinguished doubt, Enter Zara.
I could not be a man, and not believe her. So, Madam! fortune will befriend my cause, Zar. Alas, iny lord! what cruel fears havo And free me from your fetters. You are met
seized you? Most aptly, to dispel a new-risen doubt,
What harsh, mysterious words were those I heard? That claims the finest of your arts to gloss it. Osm. What fears should Osman feel, since ZaUnhappy each by other, it is time
ra loves him ? To end our mutual pain, that both may rest : Zar. I cannot live and answer to your voice, You want not generosity, but love;
In that reproachful tone; your angry eye My pride forgotten, my obtruded throne, Trembles with fury while you talk of love. My favours, cares, respect, and tenderness,
Osm. Since Zara loves him! Touching your gratitude, provoked regard; Zar. Is it possible "Till, by a length of benefits besieged,
Osman should disbelieve it?-Again, again Your heart submitted, and you thought 'twas Your late-repented violence returnslove:
Alas! what killing frowns you dart against me! But you deceived yourself and injured me. Can it be kind? Can it be just to doubt me?' There is, l'ın told, an object more deserving Osm. No! I can doubt no longer-You may Your love than Osman-I would know his retire.
(Erit Zará, Be just, nor trifle with my anger: tell me
She's at the topmost point of shameless artifice;
She's innocent, she swears—so is the fire; While yet the thunder rolls suspended, stay it; It shines in harmless distance, bright and pleaLet thy voice charm me, and recall my soul,
sing, That turns averse, and dwells no more on Zara. Consuming nothing till it first embraces. Zar. Can it be Osman speaks, and speaks to Sav, hast thou chosen a slave?- Is he instructed?' Zara?
Haste to detect her vileness and my wrongs.
Oras. Punctual I have obeyed your whole Now hear me with attention-Soon as night command :
Has thrown her welcome shadows o'er the pa But have you armed, my lord, your injured heart,
lace; With coldness and indifference? Can you hear, When this Nerestan, this ungrateful Christian, All painless and unmoved, the false one's shame? Shall lurk in expectation near our walls,
Osm. Orasmin, I adore her more than ever. Be watchful that our guards surprise and seize Oras. My lord ! my emperor! forbid it, Hea
Then, bound in fetters, and o'erwhelmed with Osm. I have discerned a gleam of distant hope; shame, This hateful Christian, the light growth of France, Conduct the daring traitor to my presence :Proud, young, vain, amorous, conceited, rash, But, above all, be sure you hurt not Zara; Has misconceived some charitable glance, Mindful to what supreme excess I love. And judged it love in Zara: he alone,
(Exit Orasmin, Then, has offended me. Is it her fault,
On this last trial all my hopes depend;
Dispel the doubts that rack my anxious breast,
You tremble to offend your haughty lover,
Whom wrongs and outrage but endear the more; ZARA and SELIMA.
Yes you are blind to Osman's cruel nature, Zar. Soothe me no longer with this vain desire; That Tartar's fierceness, that obscures his bounties; To a recluse like me, who dares henceforth This tyger, savage in his tenderness, Presume admission !- -the seraglio's shut- Courts with contempt, and threatens amidst softBarred and impassable-as death to time!
Zar. What reproach
Can I with justice make him? I, indeed,
Was not his throne, was not his temple ready? (Zara reads the letter. Did he not court his slave to be a queen, Sel. (Aside.] Thou everlasting ruler of the And have I not declined it - I who ought world!
To tremble, conscious of affronted power ! Shed thy wished mercy on our hopeless tears; Have not I triumphed o'er his pride and love? Redeem us from the hands of hated infidels, Seen him submit his own high will to mine, And save my princess from the breast of Osman. And sacrifice his wishes to my weakness ? Zur. I wish, my friend, the comfort of your Sel. Talk we no more of this unhappy passion : counsel.
What resolution will your virtue take? Sel. Retire-you shall be called—wait near- Zar. All things combine to sink me to despair: Go, leave us
[Exit Melidor. From the scraglio death alone will free me. Zar. Read this, and tell me what I ought to I long to see the Christians' happy climes;
Yet in the moment, while I form that prayer, For I would gladly hear my brother's voice. I sigh a secret wish to languish here. Sel. Say rather you would hear the voice of How sad a state is mine! my restless soul Heaven.
All ignorant what to do, or what to wish, 'Tis not your brother calls you, but your God. My only perfect sense is that of pain.
Zar. I know it, nor resist his awful will; Oh, guardian Heaven ! protect my brother's life, Thou knowest that I have bound my soul by oath; For I will meet him, and fulfil his prayer: But can 1-ought I-to engage myself,
Then, when from Solyma's unfriendly walls, My brother, and the Christians, in this danger? His absence shall unbind his sister's tongue, Sel. 'Tis not their danger that alarms your Osman shall learn the secret of my birth, fears;
My faith unshaken, and my deathless love; Your love speaks loudest to your shrinking soul; He will approve my choice, and pity me. I know your heart of strength to hazard all, I'll send my brother word he may expect me. But it has let in traitors, who surrender, Call in the faithful slave God of my fathers! On poor pretence of safety :-Learn at least,
[Erit Selina To understand the weakness that deceives you : Let thy hand save me, and thy will direct!
Orasmin, prophet, reason, truth, and love!
After such length of benefits, to wrong me!
That Zara was a slave!--I gave up all; Away--the sultan comes; he must not find us. Gave up tranquillity, distinction, pride, [Ereunt Zara and Selima.. And fell the shameful victim of my
Oras. Sir, sovereign, sultan, my imperial masEnter Osman and ORASMIN.
The distant provocation.
Osm. A voice, like dying groans !
Oras. Nor tread of mortal footpor voice I Then blushed, and read it; and again grew pale; hear : And wept, and smiled, and doubted, and resolved: The still seraglio lies, profoundly plunged For after all this race of varied passions, In death-like silence. Nothing stirs.--The air When she had sent me out, and called me back, Is soft, as infant sleep; no breathing wing • Tell him,' she cried, who has intrusted thee, Steals through the shadows, to awaken night. • That Zara's heart is fixed, nor shrinks at dan- Osm. Horrors a thousand tiines more dark than • ger;
these, And that my faithful friend will, at the hour, Benight my suffering soul—Thou dost not know Expect, and introduce him to his wish.? To what excess of tenderness I loved her; Osm. Enough-begone-I have no ear for I knew no happiness, but what she gave me,
[To the slave. Nor could have felt a misery but for her! Leave me, thou too, Orasmin.-- Leave me, lite, Pity this weakness--mine are tears, Orasmin,
[To Orasmin. That fall not oft, vor lightly. For every mortal aspect moves my hate :
Oras. Tears !-Oh, Heaven! Leave nie to my distraction I grow mad, Osm. The first which ever yet unmanned my And cannot bear the visage of a friend.
eyes ! Leave me to rage, despair, and shame, and Oh! pity Zara--pity me
e-Orasmin, wrongs !
These but forerun the tears of destined blood. Leave me to seek myself-and-shun mankind. Oras. Oh, my unhappy lord !-I tremble for
youWho am I?-Heaven! Who am I? What re- Osm. Do-tremble at my sufferings, at my solve I?
love; Zará! Nerestan! sound these words like names At my revenge too, tremble—for 'tis due, Decreed to join?Why pause I ?—Perish Zara And will not be deluded. Would I could tear her image from my heart:- Oras. Hark! I hear 'Twere happier not to live at all, than live The steps of men, along the neighbouring wall ! Her scorn, the sport of an ungrateful false one ! Osm. Fly-seize him—'tis Nerestan! Wait no And sink the sovereign in a woman's property.
Bat drag him down to my impatient eye.
[E.rit Orasmin. Orasmin-Friend! return, I cannot bear This absence from thy reason : 'twas unkind, Euter Zara, and SELIMA, in the dark. Twas cruel to obey me, thus distressed, And wanting power to think, when I had lost Zar: Where art thou, Selima? Give me thy thee.
hand. How goes the hour? Has he appeared, this rival? It is so dark, I tremble as I
step: Perish the shameful sound-This villain Christian! With fears and startings, never felt till now! Has he appeared below?
Osm. Damnation ! 'tis her voice! the wellOras. Silent and dark,
known sound, The unbreathing world is hashed, as if it heard, That has so often charmed me into baseness ! And listened to your sorrows.
Oh, the perfidious hypocrite!-she goes Osm. Oh, treacherous night!
To meet the inviting infidel ! -now, now, Thou lendst thy ready veil to every treason,
[Drawing a daggers And teeming mischiefs thrive beneath thy shade. Revenge, stand firm, and intercept his wishes ; Vol. I,