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Your brother Norfolk is my dearest friend;
Shall I ?
L. Scrope. Here's one to put me to the proof-
Heaven knows the issue ; we'll retire and pray
For peace, and concord, amity and love.
[Exeunt Lady S. and Lady D.
Mary. Herries ! my friend ! companion of my flight!
Best counsellor who bade me shun this land,
What answer have you brought from this proud
L. Her. This is the purport : England's Queen de.
That as a friend, and not a judge, she hears
This cause Your restoration to atchieve,
If you renounce all title to her crown,
During her life, and issue-Give up France ;
Ally yourself with her; renounce the mass.
Mary. Heav'ns vhat a height of infolence is this!
I see her aim; and now, no more, than this
Will she in perfon hear her filler Queen?
L Her. She still declines to see you, till you're
Of this foul charge; which she herself abets,
Basely fuborning forgeries; mean time,
Full of professions of lincerelt love,
She waits impatient to embrace with joy
Her vindicated filter- But till then,
Moft fanctimoniously abhors the fight
Of one, whose honour she herself betrays
By her false calumnies.
Mary. Perfidious wretch !
L. Her. Know you that Murray, your base brother,
At England's court, consulted, closetted ;
While you, a Queen, her equal in all points,
Are in a vile durance
Mary. Grant me patience, heaven!
L. Her. Were he your equal, why this preference To him who should plead guilty, not accused
Mary. 'Tis all mere mockery and artifice To cheat the world, and gain its confidence By semblance of fair justice. L. Her. Rather say, Plain, undifguis'd injustice ;
might I speak, Your Majesty thou'd arrrogate your right, As a supreme and independent Queen.
Mary. And yet my trusty guide! Can I recede ;
Decline the enquiry; scorn the public voice ;
Leave the licentious world to its own thoughis,
And my fair fame, a prey to wild conjecture ?
L. Her. The world's more just than to expect a
To plead to vassals in a foreign land;
Hold up her hand, and bend her knee to those
Whose proudeft head, at fight of her approach,
Shou'd proftrate fall, and humbly kiss the dust.
Mary. And yet what other clearance can I have?
Shall I sit down under this heavy load?
Shall conscious innocence reject the means
Of wiping off this stain ? No! I'll relign
All, but the first of titles, a fair name
L. Her. 'Tis not yourself, but Scotland you betray;
Rights of a sovereign realm, transmitted thro'
A kundred kings; rights which yourself were born,
And which you've sworn to uphold.
Mary, Truth will prevail ;
Herries! you may return to England's Queen :
Tell her I here recall my late appeal,
As all beneath my name and dignity.
Tell her I came invited to this land
By her fair words, and sought a refuge here;
That refuge is a prison--then repeat
My wish in person to submit my cause ;
(Wherein I shew her honour and respect
Exceeding all example) If, at last,
This woman, so forgetful of herself,
Deaf to the.claims of blood and royalty,
Against a sister shall make fast the door,
Admitting her accuser : let her know,
The Queen of Scotland claims her liberty ;
Demands her birth right; nor will e'er resign
That freedom heaven and nature gave to all.
If this just fuit's denied ; defy her then;
Challenge her wort: dare her to keep me here;
Bid her unhinge, and set at naught the laws
Of nature and of nations; let her pride
Exult in barbarous difregard of right,
And emulate th' unlettered Turk and Moor,
Till in one common cause, and with one voice,
All Chriltendom shall rise to rescue me.
Nor. Pardon this bold intrusion of your slave,
Whose steps are guided by refiftless charms,
And every sentiment that purelt love
Breathes in the hearts of her true votaries.
Mary. Are you then come, brave, generous man!
Norfolk! at light of thee, dispels my fears.
Yet were it known you fought my presence here
Nor. Is it then treason to approach these walls?
Nuf I presume your guilt, who, thro' this veil,
See your bright innocence ?
Mary, Heav'n knows 'cis such ;
But circumvented thus by perjuries,
By bold bad men, what can a woman hope,
A helpless, unbefriended exile ?
Can't thou pronounce those words and look on me?
Mary. No! thou didst guard me from th' impend.
Of Murray, that in human enemy,
Oh, thou halt lavished unrequited aid
Most Angel like-Now firit I feel my loss :
The fall of power ne'er wounds the brealt so deep,
As when, from hearts that swell with gratitude,
It fevers all the means of recompense.
Nor. What do I hear? No means of recomper?
Why what reward can Heav'n? a beauteous Q
The paragon and envy of her fex,
The wonder and delight of all mankind;
Sent from the skies to dazzle all below
With rays too bright for mortal sight to bear.
Mary. Terins such as these apply not to a wretch.
A poor, unfortunate, degraded wretch,
Doom'd to captivity.
Nor. Captivity! It cannot, mult nor, shall not be ; such acts Are not within the reach of envy's grasp. Cold-blooded tyrants may conceive such thoughts; But, trust me, mankind is not yet so loft To honour, decency, and gen'rous love; The manners of the age, the face of things, Wou'd not endure to see the pride of the age, And all the living beauty of the world, Led like a sacrifice to night and hell, And buried quick-nay, in the bloom of youth ; And such a bloom as blasts the blushing rose Of England's maids fo fam'da form that mars All other claim to grace or dignity. Mary. You mock me, sure!Alas! what
would these fights ? Nor. Yourself, and this fair hand; here on this
earth I ask, in one rąl prayer, all Heaven çan grant,
[Kneeling: Mary. Let not despair, or confidence, take place; Where fickle fortune reigns
Nor. Oh, joyful words i
I am noç to despair ; hence, hence I date
All joys of life, and flatt'ring hopes to come;
And dedicate all 'honour, fervice, love,
Henceforth, unto the mistress of my soul.
Mary. Another mistress claims thy services,
A proud, inquisitive, revengeful Queen;
One full of envy; doom'd thro? life to feed
Con gall, and spleen; nor talle love's generous
draught; Watchful she is, and jealous in the extreme: Beware how she's inform'd!
Nør. Why shou'd we fear?
Her ministers approve; proud Leicester's self,
Her favourite, will procure her full consent.
Mary. Great minds are unfufpicious to their ruin;
Trust not to Lieceler's words-Nor dream that she
Will loose these chains, and falten hymen's bands,
For one she hates, fears, views with envious eyes.
Will she, so wise, join me to all your power ?
It cannot be; prepare then for the worit;
And, if we fail, and I remain a flave,
Perhaps in falter chains, they shall but add
Fresh rivets to our love. This token keep!
[Delivering a tokeni If closer walls await me,
To instruct some faithful servant of your name,
And of my wish for your access-Adieu !
Nor. Farewel, thou pattern of all excellence !
MARY fola. Now, Heav'ns! as you regard our mortal cares, If innocence claims mercy in your fight, Expand your guardian wings, and cover me From this black form! avert the dire approach Of this too subtil serpent's crooked pace That glides to my destruction! How have I Deserved her venom? Is it that I am young ? Born to one Crown and married to another? Or that, in ine, she fees with jaundic'd eyes Her lineal successor? Aye! there's the crime Meanness cannot forgive-Poor narrow soul! That wanting courage to subinit to fate, Seeks, like her father, to perpetuate A mortal throne, and reign when she's no more: There's no difemper so incurable As thirlt of power-Here then for life I'm fix’d, Unlets I work my way thro'walls of ttone ; Alas, there hands are weak! But I'll find some Shall tear up by the roots these thick.ribb’d towers; I'll from my dungeon scream, till to my cries All Europe echocs--- Norfolk! thou thall Hrouze