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Duke. Good : "I'll slack no time while I am hot in blood.
[Takes up his sword and exit, Fior. Here's royal vengeance! this becomes the
state Of his disgrace, and my unbounded hate. [Exit.
An Apartment in the Palace.
a bloody dagger in the other.
Fern. Duke, I fear thee not:
how hast thou used thy dutchess ?
Fern. Not dead ?
He drops his sword.
Here, here's my bosom; as thou art a duke,
Duke. Faint-hearted coward,
Fern. Do but hear me first:
Duke. Pish, this is stale dissimulation;
Fern. If ever I unshrined The altar of her purity, or tasted More of her love, than what, without control Or blame, a brother from a sister might, Rack me to atomies. I must confess I have too much abused thee; did exceed In lawless courtship; ?t is too true, I did : But by the honour which I owe to goodness, For any actual folly, I am free. Duke. 'Tis false : as much, in death, for thee she
spake. Fern. By yonder starry roof, 't is true. O duke! Couldst thou rear up another world like this, Another like to that, and more, or more, Herein thou art most wretched; all the wealth Of all those worlds could not redeem the loss Of such a spotless wife. Glorious Bianca, Reign in the triumph of thy martyrdom, Earth was unworthy of thee.
Duke. Fernando, dar'st thou swear upon my sword To justify thy words?
Fern. Í dare ; look here. [Kisses the sword. 'Tis not the fear of death doth prompt my tongue, For I would wish to die; and thou shalt know, Poor miserable duke, since she is dead, I'll hold all life a hell.
Duke. Bianca chaste!
Duke. Chaste, chaste, and kill'd by me! to her
(Offers to stab himself, and is stayed by FERN. Fern. Hold! Be gentler to thyself.
Duke. Whither now
[Kneels, holds up his hands, and, after speaking
to himself a little, rises. 'T is done ; come, friend, now for her love, Her love that praised thee in the pangs of death, I'll hold thee dear; lords, do not care for me, I am too wise to die yet.—Oh, Bianca!
A solemn strain of soft Music. The Scene opens,
and discovers a church, with a tomb in the back
ground. Enter Attendants with torches, after them two Friars ;
then the Duke in mourning manner; after him FioRMONDA, ROSEILLI, and a Guard.—D'Avolos following. When the procession approaches the tomb, they all kneel. The Duke goes to the tomb, and lays his hand on it. The Music ceases. Duke. Peace and sweet rest sleep here! Let not
the touch Of this my impious hand profane the shrine Of fairest purity, which hovers yet
About these blessed bones inhearsed within.
[The tomb is opened, out of which rises FER
NANDO in his winding sheet, and, as CARAFFA
is going in, puts him back. Fern. Forbear! what art thou that dost rudely
Duke. Fernando, man of darkness,
My resolution of a glorious name.
Fern. Of death? poor duke!
Duke. Guard-lay hands,
Fern. Yes, let 'em, here's my shield ; Here's health to victory!
[He drinks off a phial of poison. Now do thy worst. Farewell, duke, once! I have outstripp'd thy plots; Not all the cunning antidotes of art Can warrant me twelve minutes of my life : It works, it works already, bravely! bravely!Now, now I feel it tear each several joint. O royal poison ! trusty friend ! split, split Both heart and gall asunder, excellent bane ! Roseilli, love my memory.-Well search'd out, Swift, niinble venom! torture every vein.“ I come, Bianca-cruel torment, feast, Feast
on, do !-duke, farewell Thus I-hot
flames! Conclude my love,-and seal it in my bosom!-oh!
[Dies. Friar. Most desperate end !
Duke. None stir;