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ness.

This sacrilegious hypocrite, this spoiler, My father's spirit leads the vengeful shades
To steal thy terrors, and blaspheme thy name, Of all the wretches whom thy sword has but-
Nor doom him instant dead?

[Aside. chered : Mah. Child of my care,

I see them raise their unsubstantial arms At length from galling chains I've set thee free, To snatch me from thy rage, or worse, thy love. And made thee triumph in a just revenge; Shadows shall conquer in Palmira's cause. Think then thou'rt dear to me, and Mahomet Mah. [Aside.) What terror's this, that hangs Regards thee with a more than father's eye;

upon her accents ? Then know (if thou'lt deserve the mighty boon) I feel her virtue, though I know her weakness. An higher name, a nobler fate, awaits thee.

Pal. Thou askest my love; go seek it in the Pal. What would the tyrant?

-- [Aside.

grave Mah. Raise thy thoughts to glory,

Of good Alcanor. Talk'st of grateful minds? And sweep this Zaphna from thy memory, Bid Zaphna plead for thee, and I may hear thee; With all that's pasi—Let that mean flame expire Till then, thou art my scorn—May'st thou, like Before the blaze of empire's radiant sun.

me, Thy grateful heart must answer to my bounties, Behold thy dearest blood spilt at thy feet ! Follow my laws, and share in all my conquests. Mecca, Medina, all our Asian world, Pal. What laws, what bounties, and what con- Join, join to drive the impostor from the earth! quests, tyrant?

Blush at his chains, and shake them off in venFraud is thy law, the tomb thy only bounty, geance! Thy conquests fatal as infected air,

Mah. [Aside,] Be still, my soul, nor let a woDispeopling half the globe-See here, good man's

rage Tleaven!

Ruffle thy wonted calm. Spite of thy hate, The venerable prophet I revered,

Thou art lovely still, and charming even in madThe king I served, the god that I adored ! Muh. approaching her.] Whence this unwont

[A shout and noise of fighting, ed language, this wild trenzy?

My fair, retire; nor let thy gentle soul Pal. Where is the spirit of my martyred Shake with alarms; thou art my peculiar care : father?

I go to quell this traitorous insurrection, Where Zaphna's, where Palmira's innocence? And will attend thee straight. Blasted by thee, by thee, infernal monster- Pal. No, tyrant, no; Thou found'st us angels and hast made us fiends ; | I'll join my brother, help to head our friends, Give, give us back our lives, our fame, our And urge them on.

[A shout, virtue :

Roll, roll your thunders, heavens, and aid the Thou canst not, tyrant-yet thou seekest my storin! love,

Now hurl your lightning on the guilty head, Scekest with Alcanor’s blood his daughter's love! And plead the cause of injured innocence ! Mah. apart.] Horror and death! the fatal

[Erit Pal. secret's known.

Enter Ali.
Enter Mirvan.

Mah. Whence, Ali, that surprise ?
Mir. Oh, Mahomet, all's lost, thy glory tarnish- Ali. My royal chief,
ed,

The foe prevails. Thy troops, led on by Mirvan, And the insatiate tomb ripe to devour us! Are all cut off, and valiant Mirvan's self, Hercides' parting breath divulged the secret. By Zaphna slain, lies weltering in his blood : The prison's forced, the city all in arms: The guard, that to our arms should ope the gates, See where they bear aloft their murdered chief, Struck with the common phrenzy, vow thy ruin, Fell Zaphna in their front, death in his looks, And death and vengeance is the general cry! Rage all his strength. Spite of the deadly draught, Mah. Can Ali fear? then, Mahomet, be thyHe holds in life but to make sure of vengeance. self! Mah. What dost thou here, then instant Ali. See, thy few friends, whom wild despair with our guards,

hath armed, Attempt to stem their progress, till the arrival (But armed in vain) are come to die beside thee. Of Omar with the troops.

Mah. Ye heartless traitors ! Mahomet alone Mir. I haste, my lord. [Exit Mirvan. Shall be his own defender, and your guard Pal. Now, now, my hour's at hand !

Against the crowds of Mecca-Follow me. Learest thou those shouts, that rend the ambient Ha!

air? Seest thou those glancing fires, that add new

Enter Zapuna, PALMIRA, and Pharon, with horrors

citizens, and the body of ALCANOR on a bier. To the night's gloom? fresh from thy murdering Zaph. See, my friends, where the Impostor poignard,

stands,

ster!

his tongue.

With head erect, as if he knew not guilt,

Pal. Oh, my brother! As if no tongue spake from Alcanor's wounds, Zaph. In vain's the guiltless meaning of my Nor called for vengeance on him.

heart; Mah. Impious man!

High heaven detests the involuntary crime, Is it not enough to have spilt thy parent-blood, And dooms for parricide-Then tremble, tyrant! But, with atrocious and blaspheming lips, If the Supreme can punish errors thus, Darest thou arraign the substitute of Heaven! What new-invented tortures must await Zaph. The substitute of Heaven! so is the Thy soul, grown leprous with such foul offences? sword,

But soft-now Fate and Nature are at strifeThe pestilence, the famine ; such art thou; Sister, farewell! with transport should I quit Such are the blessings Heaven has sent to man This toilsome, perilous, delusive stage, By thee its delegate; nay, more, to me.

But that I leave thee on it: leave thee, Palmira, Oh, he took pains, Palmira, upon us;

Exposed to what is worse than fear can image, Deluded us into such monstrous crimes

That tyrant's mercy; but I know thee brave; As Nature sickened at conception of !

Know that thou'lt act a part-Look on her HeaHow couldst thou damn us thus ?

ven, Mah. Babbler, avaunt!

Guide her, and-oh!

[Dics

. Zaph. Well thou upbraid'st me; for to par- Pal. Think not, ye men of Mecca, ley with thee

This death inflicted by the hand of heaven; Half brands me coward. Oh, revenge me, Tis he—that viper friends!

Mah. Know, ye faithless wretches! Revenge Alcanor's massacre; revenge

'Tis mine to deal the bolts of angry heaven ; Palmira's wrongs, and crush the rancorous mon- Behold them there, and let the wretch, who

doubts, Mah. Hear me, ye slaves, born to obey my Tremble at Zaphna's fate; and know, that Mawill !

homet Pal. Ah, hear him not! fraud dwells upon Can read his thoughts, and doom him with a look.

Go then, and thank your pontiff and your prince Zaph. Have at thee, fiend-Ha! Heaven! For each day's sun he grants you to behold. [Zaphna advancing, reels, and reclines on his Hence to your temples, and appease my rage! sword.

"The people go off What cloud is this

Pal. Ah, stay! my brother's murdered by this That thwarts upon my sight? My head grows tyrant : dizzy,

By poison, not by piety, he kills. My joints unloose; sure 'tis the stroke of Fate. Mah. 'Tis done- -Thus ever be our law re Mah. [ Aside.] The poison works! then tri- ceived !

Apart. umph, Mahomet!

Now, fair PalmiraZaph. Olf, off, base lethargy!

Pal. Monster! is it thus, Pal. Brother, dismayed !

Thou makest thyself a god, by added crimes Hast thou not power but in a guilty cause, And murders justified by sacrilege? And only strength to be a parricide?

Mah. Think, exquisite Palmira! for thy sakeZaph. Spare that reproach-Come on-It will Pal. Thou'st been the murderer of all my

(Hangs down his sword, and reclines See where Alcanor, see where Zaphna, lies; on Pharon.

Do they not call for me too at thy hands? Some cruel power unnerves my willing arm, Oh that they did !But I can read thy thoughts, Blasts iny resolves, and weighs me down to earth. Palmira's saved for something worse than death; Mah. Such be the fate of all, who brave our This' to prevent—-Zaphna, I follow thee. law,

[Stabs herself with Zapkna's sword. Nature and Death have heard my voice, and now Mah. What hast thou done! Let Heaven be judge 'twixt Zaplına and myself, Pal. A deed of glory, tyrant! And instant blast the guilty of the two.

Thou hast left no object worth Palmira's eves, Pal. Brother! oh, Zaplina!

And, when I shut out light, I shut out thee Zaph. Zaphna, now no more. [Sinking down by Alcanor's body, and leaning Mah. Farewell, dear victim of my boundless

on the bier, Pharon kneeling down with passion! him, and supporting him.

The price of treachery, the reward of murder, Down, down, good Pharon-- Thou poor injured Sink with thee to the earth Ob, justice, jus corse,

tice! May I embrace thee? Wont thy pallid wound In vain are glory, worship, and dominion! Purple anew at the unnatural touch,

All conqueror as I am, I am a slave, And ooze fresh calls for vengeance?

And, by the world adored, dwell with the dained'

not be.

race.

(Dies

.

My crimes have planted scorpions in my breast; Mah. Paltry dastards !
Here, here, I feel them. 'Tis in vain to brave You fled the foe, but can disarm your master!
The host of terrors, that invade my soul: Angel of death, whose power I've long proclaimed,
I might deceive the world, myself I cannot. Now aid me, if thou canst ; now, if thou canst,
Ali. Be calm a while, my lord; think what Draw the kind curtain of eternal night,
you are.

And shroud me from the horrors, that beset me! Mah. Ha! what am I? [Turning to the bodies.

(Ereunt Mahomet, &c. Ye breathless family,

Pha. Oh! what a curse is life, when self-conLet your loud crying wounds say what I am,

viction
Oh! snatch me from that sight; quick, quick Flings our offences hourly in our face,
transport me

And turns existence torturer to itself!
To nature's loneliest mansion, where the sun Here let the mad enthusiast turn his eyes,
Ne'er entered, where the sound of human tread And see from bigotry what horrors rise ;
Was never heard-But wherefore? still I there, Here in the blackest colours let him read,
There still, shall find myself

--Ay, that's the hell! | That zeal, by craft misled, may act a deed,
I'll none on't.

[Drawing his sword. By which both innocence and virtue bleed. Ali. Heavens! help, hold him !

]Ereunt omnes. (Ali, &c. disarm him.

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TANCRED AND SIGISMUNDA.

BY

THOMSON.

DRAMATIS PERSON.E.

MEN.

WOMEN. TANCRED, count of Leece.

SIGISMUNDA, daughter of Siffredi. Matteo SIFFREDI, lord high chancellor of Sicily. Laura, sister of Rodolpho, and friend to SigisEARL OSMOND, lord high constable of Sicily.

munda.
RODOLPHO, friend to Tancred, and captain of
the guards.

Barons, Officers, Guards, &c.
Scene--The city of Palermo, in Italy.

ACT I.

SCENE I.-The palace.

But be assured, your father's steady friendship,

Joined to a certain genius, that commands,
Enter SIGISMUNDA and Laura.

Not kneels to fortune, will support and cherish,
Sig. Au, fatal day to Sicily! the king Here, in the public eye of Sicily,
Touches his last moinents !

This, I may call him, his adopted son, Laura. So 'tis feared.

The noble Tancred, formed to all his virtues. Siy. The death of those distinguished by their Sig. Ah, formed to charm his daughter! station,

This fair morn But by their virtue more, awakes the mind Has tempted far the chase. Is he not yet To solemn dread, and strikes a saddening awe; Returned Not that we grieve for them, but for ourselves, Laura. No. When your father to the king, Left to the toil of life-- And yet the best Who now expiring lies, was called in haste, Are, by the playful children of this world, He sent each way his messengers to find him; At once forgot, as they had never been.

With such a look of ardour and impatience, Laura, 'tis said, the heart is sometimes charged As if this near event was to count Tancred With a prophetic sadness : such, methinks, Of more importance than I comprehend. Now hangs on mine. The king's approaching Sig. There lies, my Laura, o'er my Tancred's death

birth Suggests a thousand fears. What troubles thence A cloud I cannot pierce. With princely accost, May throw the state once more into confusion, Nay, with respect, which oft I have observed, What sudden changes in my father's house Stealing, at times, submissive o'er bis features, May rise, and part me from my dearest Tancred, In Belmont's woods my father reared this youthAlarms my thoughts.

Ah, woods! where first my artless bosom learned Laura. The fears of love-sick fancy ! The sighs of love. He gives him out the son Perversely busy to torment itself.

Of an old friend, a baron of Apulia,

Who, in the late crusado, bravely fell.

Of ruling reason brings them back to temper,
But then 'uis strange; is all his family

And gentle softness.
As well as father dead? and all their friends, Sig. True! Oh, true, Rodolpho !
Except my sire, the generous good Sitirdi? Blest be thy kindred worth for loving his !
Had he a inother, sister, brother, left,

He is all warmth, all amiable fire,
The last remain of kindred, with what pride, All quick hervic ardour! tempered soft
What rapture, might they fly o’er earth and sea, With gentleness of heart, and manly reason!

To claim this rising honour of their blood ! If virtue were to wear a human forin,
This bright unknown, this all-accomplished youth, To light it with her dignity and flame,
Who charms too much the heart of Sigismunda! | Then softening, mix her smiles and tender graces-
Laura, perliaps your brother knows him better, Oh, she would choose the person of my Tancred!
The friend and partner of his freest hours. Go on, my friend, go on, and ever praise him;
What says Rodolpho? Does he truly credit The subject knows no bounds, nor can I tire,
This story of his birth?

While my breast trembles to that sweetest mu-
Laura. He has sometimes,

sic!
Like
you,

his doubts; yet, when maturely weigh- The heart of woman tastes no truer joy,
ed,

Is never flattered with such dear enchantment
Believes it true. As for lord Tancred's self, 'Tis more than selfish vanity-as when
lle never entertained the slightest thought She hears the praises of the man she loves !
That verred to doubt; but oft laments his state, Laura. Madam, your father comes.
By cruel tortune so ill paired to yours:
Sig. Merit like his, the fortune of the mind,

Enter Siffredi.
Beggars all wealth--Then, to your brother, Laura, Sif: [To an attendant as he enters.] Lord Tan-
He talks of ine?

cred
Laura. Of nothing else. Howe'er

Is found?
The talk begin, it ends with Sigismunda.

Atten. My lord, he quickly will be here.
Their morning, noontide, and their evening walks, I scarce could keep before him, though he bid me
Are full of you, and all the woods of Belmont Speed on, to say he would attend your orders.
Enamoured with your name-

Sif: 'Tis well-retire-You, too, my daughter, Sig. Away, my friend;

leave me. You flatter - yet the dear delusion charms. Sig. I go, my father-But how fares the king?

Laura. No, Sigismunda, 'tis the strictest truth, Sif. He is no more. Gone to that awful state, Nor half the truth, I tell you. Even with fond- Where kings the crown wear only of their virMy brother talks for ever of the passion

Sig. How bright must then be his!—This stroke That fires young Tancred's breast. So much it is sudden; strikes hini,

He was this morning well, when to the chase Hle praises love as if he were a lover.

Lord Tancred went. Ile blames the false pursuits of vagrant youth, Sif. 'Tis true. But at his years Calls them gay folly, a mistaken struggle Death gives short notice-Drooping nature then, Against best judging nature. Heaven, he says, Without a gust of pain to shake it, falls. In lavish bounty formed the heart for love; His death, my daughter, was that happy period In love included all the finer seeds

Which few attain. The duties of his day Of honour, virtue, friendship, purest bliss Were all discharged, and gratefully enjoyed Sig. Virtuous Rodolpho !

Its noblest blessings ; calm as evening skies Laura. Then his pleasing theme

Was his pure mind, and lighted up with hopes lle varies to the praises

of
your lover-

That open heaven; when, for his last long sleep
Sig. And, what, my Laura, says he on the sub- Timely prepared, a lassitude of life,
ject?

A pleasing weariness of mortal joy,
Laura. He says, that, though he was not nobly Fell on his soul, and down he sunk to rest.
born,

Oh, may my death be such !-He but one wish Nature has formed him noble, generous, brave, Left unfultiiled, which was to see count TancredTruly magnanimous, and warmly scorning Sig. To see count Tancred !-Pardon me, my Whatever bears the smallest taint of baseness ;

lordThat every easy virtue is his own;

Sif. For what, my daughter?-But, with such Not learned by painful labour, but inspired,

emotion, Implanted in his soul. Chiefly one charm Why did you start at mention of count Tancred? lle in his graceful character observes;

Sig. Nothing-I only hoped the dying king That though his passions burn with high impa- Might mean to make some generous just provision tience,

For this your worthy charge, this noble orphan. And sometimes, from a noble heat of nature, Sif. And he has done it largely–Leave me Are ready to fly off'; yet the least check Vol. I.

3 Y

ness

tues.

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