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But hope to pluck a dainty doe to ground. [Exeunt. SCENE. III.
A Defert Part of the Foreft.
Enter Aaron alone.
Aar. He, that had wit, would think, that I
To bury fo much gold under a tree,
And never after to inherit it.
Let him, that thinks of me fo abjectly,
Know, that this gold must coin a stratagem;
Which, cunningly effected, will beget
A very excellent piece of villainy:
And fo repofe, fweet gold, for their unreft',
That have their alms out of the empress' cheft.
Tam, My lovely Aaron, wherefore look'ft thou fad,
When every thing doth make a gleeful boaft?
The birds chaunt melody on every bush;
The snake lies rolled in the chearful fun;
The green leaves quiver with the cooling wind,
And make a chequer'd fhadow on the ground:
Under their fweet fhade, Aaron, let us fit,
And-whilst the babling echo mocks the hounds
Replying thrilly to the well-tun'd horns,
As if a double hunt were heard at once,-
Let us fit down, and mark their yelling noise :
And-after conflict, fuch as was fuppos'd
The wand'ring prince and Dide once enjoy'd,
When with a happy ftorm they were furpriz'd,
And curtain'd with a counfel-keeping cave,-
We may, each wreathed in the other's arms,
Our paftimes done, poffefs a golden flumber;
Whilft hounds, and horns,andfweet melodious birds,
Be unto us, as is a nurse's fong
Of lullaby, to bring her babe afleep.
Aar. Madam, though Venus govern your defires, Saturn is dominator over mine:
What fignifies my deadly-ftanding eye,
My filence, and my cloudy melancholy?
My fleece of woolly hair, that now uncurls,
Even as an adder, when the doth unioll
To do fome fatal execution?
No, madam, these are no venereal figns; Vengeance is in my heart, death in my hand, Blood and revenge are hammering in my head. Hark, Tamora,-the empress of my foul,
Unfurnish'd of her well-befeeming troop? Or is it Dian, habited like her; Who hath abandoned her holy groves, To fee the general hunting in this foreft? Tam. Saucy controller of our private steps! Had I the power that, fome fay, Dian had, Thy temples fhould be planted presently With horns, as was Acteon's; and the hounds Should drive upon thy new-transformed limbs, 20 Unmannerly intruder as thou art!
Lav. Under your patience, gentle emperess, Tis thought you have a goodly gift in horning; And to be doubted, that your Moor and you Are fingled forth to try experiments:
25 Jove fhield your husband from his hounds to-day! 'Tis pity they fhould take him for a ftag. Baf. Believe me, queen, your 3fwarth Cime
Doth make your honour of his body's hue, 30 Spotted, detefted, and abominable.
Why are you fequefter'd from all your train? Difmounted from your fnow-white goodly steed, And wander'd hither to an obfcure plot, Accompanied with a barbarous Moor, 35 If foul defire had not conducted you
Lav. And, being intercepted in your sport, Great reafon that my noble lord be rated For faucinefs.-I pray you let us hence, And let her 'joy her raven-colour'd love; 40 This valley fits the purpose paffing well. [this. Baf. The king, my brother, fhall have note of Lav. Ay, for these flips have made him noted long :
Good king! to be fo mightily abus'd!
Tam. Why, have I patience to endure all this?
Enter Chiron, and Demetrius.
Dem. How now, dear fovereign, and our gra cious mother,
Why does your highness look fo pale and wan?
Tam. Have I not reafon, think you, to look pale?
These two have 'tic'd me hither to this place,
A barren and detefted vale, you fee, it is:
The trees, though fummer, yet forlorn and lean,
O'ercome with mofs, and baleful mifletoe.
Which never hopes more heaven than refts in thee, 55 Here never thines the fun; here nothing breeds,
This is the day of doom for Baffianus:
His Philomel must lofe her tongue to-day;
Thy fons make pillage of her chastity,
And wash their hands in Baffianus' blood.
Seeft thou this letter? take it up, I pray thee,
And give the king this fatal plotted fcroll :-
Now question me no more, we are espied,
Unless the nightly owl, or fatal raven. And when they fhew'd me this abhorred pit, They told me, here, at dead time of the night, A thoufand fiends, a thousand hiffing snakes, 60 Ten thoufand fwelling toads, as many urchins, Would make fuch fearful and confufed cries, As any mortal body, hearing it,
Uare, for difquiet. 2 i, e. fly with impetuofity at him. called Cimmerian, from the affinity of blackness to darkness.
3 Swarth is black. The Moor is
Should straight fall mad, or elfe die suddenly,
No fooner had they told this hellish tale,
But ftraight they told me, they would bind me here
Unto the body of a dismal yew;
And leave me to this miferable death.
And then they call'd me, foul adulteress,
Lafcivious Goth, and all the bitterest terms
That ever ear did hear to such effect.
And, had you not by wondrous fortune come,
This vengeance on me had they executed:
Revenge it, as you love your mother's life,
Or be ye not from henceforth call'd my children.
Dem. This is a witness that I am thy fon.
That gave thee life, when well he might have flain thee,
Be not obdurate, open thy deaf ears.
Tam. Hadft thou in person ne'er offended me,
Even for his fake am I now pitilefs:-
Remember, boys, I pour'd forth tears in vain,
To fave your brother from the facrifice;
But fierce Andronicus would not relent:
Therefore away with her, ufe her as you will;
10 The worfe to her, the better lov'd of me.
Chi. And this for me, ftruck home to fhew my 15
[Stabbing bim likewife.
Lav. Ay come, Semiramis,-nay, barbarous
For no name fits thy nature but thy own!
Tam. Give me thy poinard; you shall know, 20
Your mother's hand fhall right your mother's
Dem. Stay, madam, here is more belongs to her;
First, thresh the corn, then after burn the ftraw:
This minion stood upon her chastity,
Upon her nuptial vow, her loyalty,
And with that painted hope the braves your
And fhall the carry this unto her grave?
Chi. And if the do, I would I were an eunuch. 30
Drag hence her husband to some secret hole,
And make his dead trunk pillow to our luft.
Tam. But when you have the honey you defire,
Let not this wafp out-live, us both to sting.
Chi. I warrant you, madam; we will make 35
Come, mistress, now perforce we will enjoy
That nice-preserved honesty of yours.
Lav. O Tamora! thou bear'st a woman's face,
Tam. I will not hear her speak; away with her.40
Lav. Sweet lords, intreat her hear me but a word.
Dem. Liften, fair madam: Let it be your glory,
To fee her tears; but be your heart to them,
As unrelenting flint to drops of rain. [dam?
Lav. When did the tyger's young ones teach the 45
O, do not teach her wrath; she taught it thee:
The milk, thou fuck'ft from her, did turn to marble;
Even at thy teat thou hadst thy tyranny.—
Yet every mother breeds not fons alike;
Lav. O Tamora, be call'd a gentle queen,
And with thine own hands kill me in this place:
For 'tis not life, that I have begg'd fo long;
Poor I was flain, when Baffianus dy'd.
Tam. What begg'st thou then? fond woman,
let me go.
Lav. 'Tis prefent death I beg; and one thing
That womanhood denies my tongue to tell:
O, keep me from their worse than killing luft,
And tumble me into fome loathfome pit;
Where never man's eye may behold my body:
Do this, and be a charitable murderer.
Tam. So fhould I rob my fweet fons of their fee:
No, let them fatisfy their luft on thee.
Dem. Away; for thou hast staid us here too long.
Lav. No grace? no womanhood? Ah beaftly
The blot and enemy to our general name!
Chi. Nay, then I'll ftop your mouth,-Bring thou
her husband; [Dragging off Lavinia,
This is the hole where Aaron bid us hide him.
Tam. Farewel, my fons: fee, that you make
Ne'er let my heart know merry cheer indeed,
Till all the Andronici be made away.
Now will I hence to feek my lovely Moor,
And let my fpleenful fons this trull deflow'r.
Enter Aaron, with Quintus and Marcus.
Aar. Come on, my lords; the better foot before:
Straight will I bring you to the loathsome pit,
Where I efpied the panther faft afleep.
Quin. My fight is very dull, whate'er it bodes.
Mar. And mine, I promife you; wer't not for
Do thou intreat her fhew a woman p ty. [To Chiron. 50 Well could I leave our sport to fleep a while.
Chi. What would't thou have me prove my
Lav. 'Tis true the raven doth not hatch a lark:
Yet have I heard, (O could I find it now!)
The lion, mov'd with pity, did endure
To have his princely paws par'd all away.
Some fay, that ravens fofter forlorn children,
The whilft their own birds famith in their nests:
O, be to me, though thy hard heart fay no,
Nothing fo kind, but fomething pitiful!
Tam. I know not what it means; away with her.
Lav. O, let me teach thee: for my father's fake,
[Marcus falls into the pit. Quin. What, art thou fallen? What subtle hole
Whofe mouth is cover'd with rude-growing briars; 55 Upon whofe leaves are drops of new-fhed blood, As freth as morning's dew diftill'd on flowers? A very fatal place it feems to me ;Speak, brother, haft thou hurt thee with the fall? Mar. O brother, with the difmalleft object 60 That ever eye, with fight, made heart lament. Aar. [Afide.] Now will I fetch the king to find them here;
* Painted hope means fpecious hope, or ground of confidence more playfible than folid,
That he thereby may have a likely guefs,
How these were they, that made away his brother.
Mar. Why doft not comfort me and help me
Tam. Where is thy brother Baffianus ?
Sat. Now to the bottom doft thou search my
Poor Baffianus here lies murdered.. [wound;
Tam. Then all too late I bring this fatal writ,
5 The complot of this timeless tragedy:
And wonder greatly, that man's face can fold
In pleafing fmiles fuch murderous tyranny.
[She giveth Saturninus a letter.
Saturninus reads the letter.
From this unhallow'd and blood-ftained hole?
Quin. I am furprized with an uncouth fear :
A chilling fweat o'er-runs my trembling joints;
Mine heart fufpects more than mine eye can fee.
Mar. To prove thou haft a true-divining heart, 10
Aaron and thou look down into this den,
And fee a fearful fight of blood and death.
Quin. Aaron is gone; and my compaffionate
Will not permit my eyes once to behold
The thing, whereat it trembles by furmise;
O, tell me how it is; for ne'er 'till now
Was I a child, to fear I know not what.
Mar. Lord Baffianus lies embrewed here,
All on a heap, like to a slaughter'd lamb,
In this detefted, dark, blood-drinking pit.
Quin. If it be dark, how doft thou know 'tis he?
Mar. Upon his bloody finger he doth wear
A precious ring, that lightens all the hole,
Which, like a taper in fome monument,
Doth fhine upon the dead man's earthy cheeks,
And shews the ragged entrails of this pit:
So pale did shine the moon on Pyramus,
When he by night lay bath'd in maiden blood.
O brother, help me with thy fainting hand,-
If fear hath made thee faint, as me it hath,
Out of this fell devouring receptacle,
As hateful as Cocytus' milty mouth.
Quin. Reach me thy hand, that I may help thee
Or, wanting ftrength to do thee fo much good,
I may be pluck'd into the swallowing womb
Of this deep pit, poor Baffianus' grave.
"An if we mifs to meet him handsomely,-
"Sweet huntsman-Baffianus 'tis, we mean,—
“Do thou so much as dig the grave for him;
"Thou know'ft our meaning: Look for thy
"Among the nettles at the elder tree,
"Which over-shades the mouth of that same pit,
"Where we decreed to bury Baffianus.
"Do this, and purchase us thy lafting friends."
O Tamora! was ever heard the like?
20 This is the pit, and this the elder tree :
Look, firs, if you can find the huntsman out,
That should have murder'd Baffianus here.
Aar. My gracious lord, here is the bag of gold.
Sat. Two of thy whelps, fell curs of bloody
Have here bereft my brother of his life :
Sirs, drag them from the pit unto the prison; 30 There let them bide, until we have devis'd Some never-heard-of torturing pain for them. Tam. What, are they in this pit? O wond'rous thing!
I have no ftrength to pluck thee to the brink.
Mar. And I no ftrength to climb without thy
Quin. Thy hand once more; I will not lofe
'Till thou art here aloft, or I below:
Thou canst not come to me, I come to thee.
How eafily murder is difcovered?
Tit. High emperor, upon my feeble knee
I beg this boon, with tears not lightly shed,
That this fell fault of mine accurfed fons,
Accurfed, if the fault be prov'd in them—
Sat. If it be prov'd! you fee, it is apparent.-
Who found this letter? Tamora, was it you?
Tam. Andronicus himself did take it up.
Tit. I did, my lord: yet let me be their bail:
For by my father's reverend tomb, I vow,
They fhall be ready at your highness' will,
45 To answer their fufpicion with their lives.
Sat. Thou shalt not bail them: fee, thou fol
Mar. We know not where you left him all
But, out, alas! here have we found him dead.
Enter Tamora, with Attendants; Andronicus, and [60
Tam. Where is my lord, the king? [grief.
Sat. Here, Tamora; though griev'd with killing
Tam. Andronicus, I will entreat the king; Fear not thy fons, they shall do well enough. Tit. Come, Lucius, come; ftay not to talk. with them. [Excant feverally.
There is fuppofed to be a gem called a carbuncle, which emits not reflected but native light.
Chi. Write down thy mind, bewray thy meaning fo;
And, if thy ftumps will let thee, play the fcribe. Dem. See how with figns and tokens fhe can fcowl.
[hands. 5 Chi. Go home, call for fweet water, wash thy Dem. She has no tongue to call, nor hands to wash;
And fo let's leave her to her filent walks. [felf.
Chi. An 'twere my cafe, I should go hang my-10
Dem. If thou hadft hands to help thee knit the
[Exeunt Demetrius and Chiron.
Mar. Who's this,-my niece, that flies away fo faft?
Coufin, a word; Where is your husband?
If I do dream, 'would all my wealth would wake me!
Ah, now thou turn'ft away thy face for shame!
And, notwithstanding all this lofs of blood,-
As from a conduit with their iffuing spouts,→→
Yet do thy cheeks look red as Titan's face,
Blufhing to be encounter'd with a cloud.
Shall I fpeak for thee; fhall I say, 'tis fo?
O, that I knew thy heart; and knew the beast,
That I might rail at him to ease my mind!
Sorrow concealed, like an oven stopp'd,
Doth burn the heart to cinders where it is.
Fair Philomela, fhe but loft her tongue,
And in a tedious fampler few'd her mind:
But, lovely niece, that mean is cut from thee;
A craftier Tereus haft thou met withal,
15 And he hath cut thofe pretty fingers off,
That better could have few'd than Philomel.
O, had the monster seen thofe lily hands
Tremble, like afpen leaves, upon a lute,
And make the filken ftrings delight to kifs them;
20 He would not then have touch'd them for his life.
Or, had he heard the heavenly harmony,
Which that sweet tongue hath made;
If I do wake, some planet strike me down,
That I may slumber in eternal sleep!—
Speak, gentle niece, what ftern ungentle hands
Have lopp'd, and hew'd, and made thy body bare
Of her two branches; those sweet ornaments,
Whofe circling shadows kings have fought to sleep
And might not gain fo great a happiness,
As half thy love? Why doft not speak to me?-
Alas, a crimson river of warm blood,
Like to a bubbling fountain stirr'd with wind,
Doth rife and fall between thy rofed lips,
Coming and going with thy honey breath.
But, fure, fome Tereus hath deflower'd thee;
And, left thou should'st detect him, cut thy tongue.
He would have dropp'd his knife, and fell asleep,
As Cerberus at the Thracian poet's feet.
Come, let us go, and make thy father blind;
For fuch a fight will blind a father's eye:
One hour's ftorm will drown the fragrant meads:
What will whole months of tears thy father's eyes?
Do not draw back, for we will mourn with thee:
300, could our mourning case thy mifery!
For pity of mine age, whose youth was spent
In dangerous wars, whilst you securely slept;
For all my blood in Rome's great quarrel shed;
For all the frofty nights that I have watch'd;
And for these bitter tears, which you now fee
Filling the aged wrinkles in my cheeks;
Be pitiful to my condemned fons,
Whofe fouls are not corrupted as 'tis thought!
For two and twenty fons I never wept,
Because they died in honour's lofty bed.
[Andronicus lietb down, and the Judges pafs by bim. 60
For thefe, thefe tribunes, in the duft I write
My heart's deep languor, and my foul's fad tears.
Let my tears flanch the earth's dry appetite;
My fons' fweet blood will make it shame and blush.}
O earth! I will befriend thee more with rain,
That fhall diftil from these two ancient urns,
Than youthful April shall with all his showers:
In fummer's drought, I'll drop upon thee still;
In winter with warm tears I'll melt the fnow,
And keep eternal fpring-time on thy face,
So thou refufe to drink my dear fons' blood.
Enter Lucius, with bis fword drawn.
O reverend tribunes! gentle aged men!
Unbind my fons, reverse the doom of death;
And let me fay, that never wept before,
My tears are now prevailing orators.
Luc. O, noble father, you lament in vain ;
The tribunes hear you not, no man is by,
And you recount your forrows to a stone.
Tit. Ah, Lucius, for thy brothers let me plead :
Grave tribunes, once more I entreat of you.
Luc. My gracious lord, no tribune hears you
Tit. Why, 'tis no matter, man: if they did hear, They would not mark me; or, if they did mark, All bootless unto them, they would not pity me.
Therefore I tell my forrows to the stones;
Who, though they cannot answer my diftrefs,
Yet in fome fort they're better than the tribunes,
For that they will not intercept my tale :
When I do weep, they humbly at my feet,
Receive my tears, and feem to weep with me ;
And, were they but attired in grave weeds,
Rome could afford no tribune like to thefe.
A ftone is foft as wax, tribunes more hard than
A ftone is filent, and offendeth not;
And tribunes with their tongues doom men to death.
But wherefore ftand'ft thouwith thy weapondrawn?
Luc. Torefcue my two brothers from their death:
For which attempt, the judges have pronounc'd
My everlasting doom of banishment.
Tit. O happy man! they have befriended thee.
Why, foolish Lucius, doft thou not perceive,
That Rome is but a wilderness of tygers?
Tygers must prey; and Rome affords no prey,
But me and mine: How happy art thou then,
From thefe devourers to be banished?
But who comes with our brother Marcus here?
Enter Marcus and Lavinia.
Mar. Titus, prepare thy noble eyes to weep;
Or, if not fo, thy nobie heart to break;
I bring confuming forrow to thine age.
Tit. Will it confume me? let me fee it then.
Mar. This was thy daughter.
Tit. Why, Marcus, fo fhe is.
Luc. Ah me! this object kills me!
Tit. Faint-hearted boy,arife,and look upon her :--
Speak, my Lavinia, what accurfed hand
Hath made thee handlefs in thy father's fight?
What fool hath added water to the fea?
Or brought a faggot to bright-burning Troy?
My grief was at the height, before thou cam'ft,
And now, like Nilus, it difdaineth bounds.-
Give me a fword, I'll chop off my hands too;
For they have fought for Rome, and all in vain;
And they have nurs'd this woe, in feeding life;
In bootle's prayer have they been held up,
And they have ferv'd me to effectless use:
Now, all the fervice I require of them
Is, that the one will help to cut the other.-
'Tis well, Lavinia, that thou haft no hands;
For hands, to do Rome fervice, are but vain.
Luc. Speak, gentle fifter, who hath martyr'd thee?
Mar. O, that delightful engine of her thoughts,
That blab'd them with fuch pleafing eloquence,
Is torn from forth that pretty hollow cage;
Where like a fweet melodious bird it fung
Sweet vary'd notes, enchanting every ear!
Here ftands my other fon, a banish'd man;
And here my brother, weeping at my woes:
But that, which gives my foul the greatest spurn,
Is dear Lavinia, dearer than my foul.-
5 Had I but feen thy picture in this plight,
It would have madded me; What fhall I do,
Now I behold thy lovely body fo?
Thou haft no hands, to wipe away thy tears;
Nor tongue, to tell me who hath martyr'd thee:
Ic Thy hufband he is dead; and, for his death,
Thy brothers are condemn'd, and dead by this:-
Look, Marcus! ah, fon Lucius, look on her!
When I did name her brothers, then fresh tears
Stood on her cheeks; as doth the honey dew
15 Upon a gather'd lily almoft wither'd.
Mar. Perchance, the weeps because they kill'd
[Perchance, because she knows them innocent.
Tit. If they did kill thy husband, then be joyful,
20 Because the law hath ta'en revenge on them.-
No, no, they would not do fo foul a deed;
Witnefs the forrow that their fister makes.-
Gentle Lavinia, let me kifs thy lips;
Or make fome figns how I may do thee ease.
25 Shall thy good uncle, and thy brother Lucius,
And thou, and I, fit round about some fountain;
Looking all downwards, to behold our cheeks
How they are ftain'd; like meadows yet not dry
With miry flime left on them by a flood?
3c And in the fountain fhall we gaze so long,
Till the fresh tafte be taken from that clearness,
And made a brine-pit with our bitter tears?
Or fhall we cut away our hands, like thine?
Or fhall we bite our tongues, and in dumb shows
35 Pafs the remainder of our hateful days?
What fhall we do? Let us, that have our tongues,
Plot tome device of further mifery,
To make us wonder'd at in time to come.
Luc. Sweet father, ceafe your tears; for, at
See, how my wretched fifter fobs and weeps.
Mar. Patience, dear niece:-good Titus, dry
Tit. Ah, Marcus, Marcus! brother, well I wot,
45 Thy napkin cannot drink a tear of mine,
For thou, poor man, haft drown'd it with thine own.
Luc. Ah, my Lavinia, I will wipe thy checks.
Tit. Mark, Marcus, mark! I understand her
so Had fhe a tongue to fpeak, now she would fay
That to her brother which I faid to thee;
His napkin, with his true tears all bewet,
Can do no fervice on her forrowful cheeks.
O, what a fympathy of woe is this!
As far from help as limbo is from blifs.
Luc. O, fay thou for her, who hath done this deed?
Mar. O, thus I found her, ftraying in the park, 55
Secking to hide herfelf; as doth the deer,
That hath receiv'd fome unrecuring wound.
Tit. It was my deer; and he, that wounded her,
Hath hurt me more, than had he kill'd me dead :
For now I ftand as one upon a rock,
Environ'd with a wilderness of fea;
Who marks the waxing tide grow wave by wave,
Expecting ever when fome envious furge
Will in his brinith bowels fallow him.
This way to death my wretched fons are gone;
Aar. Titus Andronicus, my lord the emperor
Sends thee this word,-That if thou love thy fore,
Let Marcus, Lucius, or thyfelf, old Titus,
6c Or any one of you, chop off your hand,
And fend it to the king: he for the fame,
Will fend thee hither both thy fons alive;
And that fhall be the ranfom for their fault.
Tit. O, gracious emperor! O, gentie Aaron!
165Did ever raven fing fo like a lark,