Page images
PDF
EPUB

.

Ith. You have built me
To the full height I stand in.
Cal. Now or never!

[.Aside. May I propose a suit?

Amyc. Demand, and have it.
Cal. Pray, sir, give me this young man, and no

further
Account him yours, than he deserves in all things
To be thought worthy mine; I will esteem him
According to his merit.

Amyc. Still thou’rt my daughter,
Still grow'st upon my heart. Give me thine hand;

[To Ith. Calantha, take thine own; in noble actions Thou 'lt find him firm and absolute. I would not Have parted with thee, Ithocles, to any But to a mistress, who is all what I am. Ith. A change, great king, most wish'd for, 'cause

the same. Cal. Thou art mine.-Have I now kept my

word ? Ith. Divinely. Org. Rich fortunes guard, the favour of a prin

cess Rock thee, brave man, in ever-crowned plenty ! You are minion of the time; be thankful for it. Ho! here's a swing in destiny-apparent! The youth is up on tiptoe, yet may stumble. [Aside.

Amyc. On to your recreations.-Now convey me Unto my bedchamber; none on his forehead Wear a distempered look. All. The gods preserve you! Cal. Sweet, be not from my sight. Ith. My whole felicity! [AMYcLAs is carried out.--Exeunt all but ITHOCLES

detained by ORG!LUS. Org. Shall I be bold, my lord ?

Ith. Thou canst not, Orgilus. Call me thine own; for Prophilus must henceforth

Be all thy sister's; friendship, though it cease not
In marriage, yet is oft at less command
Than when a single freedom can dispose it.
Org. Most right, my most good lord, my most great

lord,
My gracious princely lord, I might add royal.

Ith. Royal! A subject royal ? Org. Why not, pray, sir? The sovereignty of kingdoms, in their nonage, Stoop'd to desert, not birth; there's as much merit In clearness of affection, as in puddle Of generation; you have conquer'd love Even in the loveliest: if I greatly err not, The son of Venus hath bequeath'd his quiver To Ithocles to manage, by whose arrows Calantha's breast is open'd.

Ith. Can it be possible ?

Org. I was myself a piece of suitor once,
And forward in preferment too; so forward,
That, speaking truth, I may without offence, sir,
Presume to whisper, that my hopes and (hark ye :)
My certainty of marriage stood assured
With as firm footing (by your leave) as any's,
Now, at this very instant-but-

Ith. 'T is granted:
And for a league of privacy between us,
Read o'er my bosom and partake a secret ;
The princess is contracted mine.

Org. Still, why not?
I now applaud her wisdom: when your kingdom
Stands seated in your will, secure and settled,
I dare pronounce you will be a just monarch;
Greece must admire and tremble.

Ith. Then the sweetness
Of so imparadised a comfort, Orgilus !
It is to banquet with the gods.

Org. The glory
Of numerous children, potency of nobles,
Bent knees, hearts pav'd to tread on!

[ocr errors]

ones.

Ith. With a friendship
So dear, so fast as thine.

Org. I am unfitting
For office; but for service-

Ith. We'll distinguish
Our fortunes merely in the title ; partners
In all respects else but the bed.

Org. The bed?
Forefend it, Jove's own jealousy !-till lastly
We slip down in the common earth together,
And there our beds are equal; save some monu-

ment To show this was the king, and this the subject

[Soft sad music. List, what sad sounds are these ? extremely sad

Ith. Sure from Penthea's lodgings.
Org. Hark ! a voice too.

A SONG within.
Oh, no more, no more, too late

Sighs are spent; the burning tapers
Of a life as chaste as fate,

Pure as are unwritten papers,
Are burnt out: no heat, no light,
Now remains; 'tis ever night.
Love is dead ; let lovers' eyes,

Lock'd in endless dreams,

Thextremes of all extremes,
Ope no more, for now love dies,
Now love dies,-implying

Love's martyrs must be ever, ever dying.
Ith. Oh my misgiving heart!

Org. A horrid stillness
Succeeds this deathful air; let's know the reason:
Tread softly; there is mystery in mourning.

(Eseunt.

SCENE IV. Apartment of PENTHEA in the same. PENTHCA discovered in a chair, veiled ; CHRISTALLA

and PHILEMA at her feet, mourning: Enter two Ser. vants, with two other chairs, one with an engine.'

Enter ITHOCLES and ORGILUS. 1 Serv. [Aside to ORG.] ”T is done; that on her

right-hand. Org. Good! begone.

[Exeunt Servants.
Ith. Soft peace enrich this room!
Org. How fares the lady?
Phil.. Dead.
Chris.. Dead!
Phil. Starv'd.
Chris. Starv'd !
Ith. Me miserable !
Org. Tell us
How parted she from life?

Phil. She call’d for music,
And begg'd some gentle voice to tune a farewell
To life and griefs ; Christalla touch'd the lute,
I wept the funeral song.

1 Enter two servants with two chairs, one with an engine.] This engine, as it is here called, in correspondence with the homely properties of our old theatres, was neither more nor less than a common elbowchair, which, by means of a couple of leathern hinges and a yard or two of packthread, was made to cross its arms over the breast of the person segted in it.

In the Devil's Charter, which appeared on the stage nearly thirty years before the Broken Heart, will be found the following stage-direction. “Enter Lucretia, with a chair in her hand, which she sets on the

stage.
The lady then delivers herself as follows:

Luc. I have devised such a curious snare
As jealous Vulcan never yet devised,
To grasp his armes, unable to resist

Death's instrument enclosed in these hands. Accordingly Gismond sits down, is “grasped,” like Ithocles, and stabbed without resistance by his wife ; who retires, as she optered, " with the chair in her hand."--GIFFORD,

us ;

Chris. Which scarce was ended,
But her last breath seal'd up these hollow sounds :
« Oh cruel Ithocles, and injured Orgilus !"
So down she drew her veil, so died.

Ith. So died!
Org. Up! you are messengers of death, go from

[Chris. and Phil. rise.
Here's wo enough to court without a prompter.
Away; and, -hark ye !-till you see us next,
No syllable that she is dead.-Away,
Keep a smooth brow.-[Exeunt Chris. and Phil.)

My lord. -
Ith. Mine only sister!
Another is not left me.

Org. Take that chair,
I'll seat me here in this: between us sits
The object of our sorrows; some few tears
We'll part among us: I perhaps can mix
One lamentable story to prepare them.--
There, there! sit there, my lord.
Ith. Yes, as you please.
[Sits down, the chair closes

ироп

him. What means this treachery?

Org. Caught ! you are caught, Young master! 'tis thy throne of coronation, Thou fool of greatness! See, I take this veil off; Survey a beauty wither'd by the flames Of an insulting Phaeton, her brother.

Ith. Thou mean'st to kill me basely?

Org. I foreknew The last act of her life, and train'd thee hither, To sacrifice a tyrant to a turtle. You dream'd of kingdoms, did you! how to bosom The delicacies of a youngling princess ! How with this nod to grace that subtle courtier, How with that frown to make this noble tremble, And so forth; while Penthea's groans and tortures, Her agonies, her miseries, afflictions, Ne'er touch'd upon your thought! as for my injuries,

« PreviousContinue »