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Gar. Fatal ambition ! Hark !- the foe is enter. And purpose, being changed from life to death,
[Shout. Has also wrought this chilling change of tenper. The shrillness of that shout speaks them at hand. Or does my heart bode more? What can it, more We have no time to search into the cause Than death? Of this surprising, and most fatal errör.
Let them set down the bowls, and warm Alphonso What's to be done !' the king's death 'known, That I'am here---so. You return, and find would strike
(Mutes going in. The few remaining soldiers with despair, The 'king; tell him, what he required, I've done, And make them yield to mercy of the conqueror. And wait his coming to approve the dead. Alon. My lord, I've thought how to conceal
(Erit SELIM. the body. Require me not to tell the means, till done,
Enter Mutes. Lest you forbid what you may then approve. Zara. What have you seen? Ha! wherefore [Goes in. Shout.
stare you thus, Gons. They shout again! Whate'er he means [The Mutes return, and look affrighted. to do,
With haggard eyes? Why are your arms across? 'Twere fit the soldiers were amused with hopes, Your heavy and desponding heads hung down? And, in the mean time, fed with expectation What is’t you more than speak in these sad signs ? To see the king in person at their head. Give me more ample knowledge of this m urning.
Gar. Were it a truth, I fear 'tis now too late. [They go to the Scene, which opening, she But I'll omit no care, but haste and try,
perceives the Body. Or to repel their force, or bravely die.
Ha! prostrate! bloody! headless! Oh–I'm lost. [Erit GARCIA. Oh, Osmyn! Oh, Alphonso ! Cruel fate!
Cruel, cruel, oh, more than killing object !
I came prepared to die, and see thee die-
But cannot bear to find thee thus, my OsmynAs but an hour ago I'd not have donc,
Oh, this accursed, this base, this treacherous Though for the crown of universal empire.
king! But what are kings, reduced to common clay? Or who can wound the dead? I have from the
Enter SELIM. body
Sel. I've sought in vain, for no where can the Severed the head, and in an obscure corner
king Disposed it, muffled in the mute's attire,
Be found Leaving to view of them who enter next,
Zara. Get thee to hell, and seek him there. Alone the undistinguishable trunk ;
[Stabs him. Which may be still mistaken by the guards His hellish rage had wanted means to act, For Osmyn, if, in seeking for the king,
But for thy fatal and pernicious counsel. They chance to find it.
Sel. You thought it better then-but I'm reGons. 'Twas an act of horror,
warded. And of a piece with this day's dire misdeeds. The mute you sent, by some mischance was seen, But 'tis no time to ponder or repent.
And forced to yield your letter with his life; Haste thee, Alonzo, haste thee hence, with speed, I found the dead and bloody body strippedTo aid my son. I'll follow, with the last My tongue faulters, and my voice fails—I sinkReserve, to reinforce his arms: at least, Drink not the poison--for Alphonso is—[Dies. I shall make good, and shelter, his retreat.
Zara. As thou art now and I shall quickly be. (Exeunt severally. 'Tis not that he is dead; for 'twas decreed
We both should die. Nor is't that I survive; Enter Zara, followed by Selim, and two Mules I have a certain remedy for that. bearing the bouls.
But oh, he died unknowing in my heart! Zura. Silence and solitude are every wlrere. He knew I loved, but knew not to what height; Through all the gloomy ways, and iron doors, Nor that I meant to fall before his eyes, That bither lead, nor human face nor voice A martyr, and a victim to my vows; Is seen or heard. A dreadful din was wont Insensible of this last proof he's gone. To grate the sense, when entered here, from Yet fate alone can rob his mortal part groans,
Of sense: his soul still sees, and knows each purAnd howls of slaves condemned; from clink of
And fixed event, of my persisting faith. And crash of rusty bars and creaking hinges : Then wherefore do I pause? Give me the bowl. And ever and anon the sight was dashed
(A Mute kneels, and gives one of the Bowls. With frightful faces, and the meagre looks Hover a moment, yet, thou gentle spirit, Of grim and ghastly executioners.
Soul of my love, and I will wait thy flight. Yet more this stillness terrifies my soul, This to our inutual bliss, when joined above. Than did that scene of complicated horrors.
[Drinks. It may be, that the cause of this my errand Oh, friendly draught, already in my heart!
Cold, cold; my veins are icicles and frost. I'll drink my glad acknowledgment-
Leon. Oh, hold,
in vain. I cannot feel it-quite beyond my reach, Seest thou not there? Behold who prostrate lies, Oh, now he's gone, and all is dark (Dies. And pleads against thee; who shall then prevail?
[The Mutes kneel, and mourn over her. Yet I will take a cold and parting leave
From his pale lips; I'll kiss him ere I drink,
Lest the rank juice should blister on my mouth, Alm. Oh, let me seek him in this horrid cell ! | And stain the colour of my last adieu. For n the tomb, or prison, I alone
Horror! a headless trunk! nor lips nor face, Must hope to find him.
[Coming near the body, starts and lets feil Leon. "Heavens! what dismal scene Of death is this? The eunuch, Selim, slain ! But spouting veins, and mangled flesh! Oh, Ob! Alm. Shew me, for I am come in search of death;
Enter ALPHONSO, HELI, PEREZ, with GARCIA But want a guide ; for tears have dimmed my prisoner. Guards and Attendants. sight.
Alph. Away, stand off! Where is she? let me Leon. Alas, a little farther, and behold
fly, Zara all pale and dead! two frightful men, Save her from death, and snatch her to my beart! Who seem the murderers, kneel weeping by ; Alm. Oh! Feeling remorse, too late, for what they've done.
Alph. Forbear; my arms alone shall hold her But, oh, forbear-lift up your eyes no more;
up, But haste away, fly from this fatal place, Warm her to life, and wake her into gladness. Where miseries are multiplied ; return,
Oh, let me talk, to thy reviving sense, Return, and look not on; for there's a dagger The words of joy and peace; warm tby cold Ready to stab the sight, and make your eyes
beauties Rain blood
With the new-flushing ardour of my cheek;
Of cordial sighs; and reinspire thy bosom
Alm. Where am I? 'Heaven! what does this Had they or hearts or eyes, that did this deed ?
dream intend? Could eyes endure to guide such cruel hands?
Alph. Oh, may'st thou never dream of less deAre not my eyes guilty alike with theirs,
light, That thus can gaze, and yet not turn to stone ? Nor ever wake to less substantial joys! I do not weep! The springs of tears are Alm. Given me again from death! Oh, all ye dried ;
powers, And of a sudden I am calm, as if
Confirm this miracle! Can I believe All things were well; and yet my husband's mur. My sight against my sight? and shall I trust dered!
That sense, which, in one instant, shews him dead Yes, yes, I know to mourn! I'll sluice this heart, And living ?-Yes, I will; I've been abused The source of woe, and let the torrent loosc. With apparitions and affrighting phantoms: -Those men have left to weep! they look on This is my lord, my life, my only busband;
I have him now, and we no more will part. I hope they murder all on whom they look. My father, too, shall have compassionBehold me weli; your bloody hands have erted, Alph. Oh, my heart's comfort ! 'tis not given And wrongfully have slain those innocents:
to this I am the sacrifice designed to bleed,
Frail life to be entirely blessed. Even now, And come prepared to yield my throat—They In this extremest joy my soul can taste, shake
Yet I am dashed to think that thou must weep; Their heads, in sign of grief and innocence ! Thy father fell where he designed my death.
[They point at the bowl on the ground, Gonsalez and Alonzo, both of wounds And point! What mean they? Ha! a cup; Oh, Expiring, have, with their last breath, confessed well
The just decree of Heaven, which on themselves
(She #teps. mean they?
Let them remove the body from her sight.-
Still in the paths of honour persevere, Whose virtue has renounced thy father's crimes, And not from past or present ills despair; 1.seest thou how just the hand of Heaven bas For blessings ever wait on virtuous deeds, been?
And, though a late, a sure reward succeeds. Let us, who through our innocence survive,
SPOKEN BY ALMERJA.
The tragedy thus done, I am, you know, That surgeons wait on trials in a court:
For innocence condemn’d they've no respect, 19:* And now as unconcern'd this mourning wear, Provided they've a body to dissect. As if indeed a widow or an heir.
As Sussex men, that dwell upon the shore, 1x * I've leisure now, to mark your sev'ral faces, Look out when storms arise, and billows roar,
And know each critic by his sour grimaces. Devoutly praying, with uplifted hands,
Scatter'd like ratsbane up and down the pit ; To whose rich cargo they may make pretence,
So critics throng to see a new play split,
Small hope our poet from these prospects draws; :: But if he 'scape, with what regret they're seizd! And therefore to the fair commends his cause. 122 And how they're disappointed, when they're Your tender hearts to mercy are inclin’d, pleas'd!
With whom he hopes this play will favour find, Critics to plays for the same end resort, Which was an off'ring to the sex design'd.
Of all the muşe's various labours, none
Till Heav'n, the growing evil to redress, Have lasted longer, or have higher flown, Sent Tamerlane to give the world a peace. Than those that tell the fame by ancient heroes The hero rous'd, asserts the glorious cause, won.
And to the field the cheerful soldier draws.
Well pleas’d, once more, to venture on his side
, And Cæsar and his empire still survives. And prove that faith again, which had so alt Like him (though much unequal to his flame)
been tried Qur author makes a pious prince his theme: The peaceful fathers, who in senates meet, High with the foremost names, in arms he stood, Approve an enterprise so just, so great; Had fought, and suffer'd, for his country's good, While with their prince's arms, their voice thus Yet sought not fame, but peace, in fields of
Gains half the praise of having sav'd mankind. Safe under him his happy people sat,
Ev’n in a circle, where, like this, the fair And griev'd, at distance, for their neighbour's Were met, the bright assembly did declare, fate;
Their house, with one consent, were for the Whilst with success a Turkish monarch crown'd,
war; Like spreading flame, deform’d the nations round; Each urg'd her lover to unsheath his sword, With sword and fire he forc'd his impious way And never spare a man who broke his word. To lawless pow'r, and universal sway.
Thus fir'd, the brave on to the danger press; Some ject states, for fear, the nt join, Their arms were crown'd abroad with just sul Others, for gold, their liberties resign,
cess, And venal princes sold their right divine: And blest at home with beauty and with peace.
SCENE I-Before TAMERLANE's Tent. Some accidental passion fires his breast,
And adds new horror to his native fury.
For five returning suns, scarce was be seen Pr. Hail to the sun! from whose returning By any, the most favoured of his court, light
But in lascivious ease, among his women, The cheerful soldier's arms new lustre take, Lived, from the war retired; or else alone, To deck the pomp of, battle. O, my friends! In sullen mood, sat meditating plagues Was ever such a glorious face of war?
And ruin to the world; till yester morn, See, from this height, how all Galatia's plains, Like fire, that, labouring upwards, rends the earth, With nations numberless, are covered o'er; He burst with fury from his tent, commanding Who, like a deluge, hide the face of earth, All should be ready for the fight this day. And leave no object in the vast horizon,
Zam. I know his temper well, since in his court, But glittering arms, and skies.
Companion of the brave Axalla's embassy, Zam. Our Asian world,
I oft observed bim; proud, impatient From this important day, expects a lord; Of aught superior, e'en of Heaven that made him; This day, they hope an end of all their woes, Fond of false glory, of the savage power Of tyranny, of bondage, and oppression, Of ruling without reason, of confounding From our victorious emperor, Tamerlane. Just and unjust, by an unbounded will;
Mir. Well has our holy Alla mark'd him out, By whom religion, honour, all the bands The scourge of ļawless pride, and dire ambition, That ought to hold the jarring world in peace, The great avenger of the groaning world. Were held the tricks of state, snares of wise princes, Well has he worn the sacred cause of justice To draw their easy neighbours to destruction. Upon his prosperous sword. Approving Heaven Mir. Thrice, øy our law and prophet, has he Still crowned the righteous warrior with success;
sworn, As if it said, 'Go forth, and be my champion, By the world's lord and oraker, lasting peace, Thou, most like me of all my works below. With our great master, and his royal friend,
Pr. No lust of rule, the common vice of kings, | The Grecian emperor; as oft, regardless No furious zeal, inspir'd by bot-brain'd priests, Of plighted faith, with most unkingly baseness, Ill hid beneath religion's specious name, Has ta'en the advantage of their absent arms, E’er drew his temperate courage to the field: Without a war proclaimed, or cause pretended, But to redress an injur'd people's wrongs, To waste, with sword and fire, their fruitful fields; To save the weak one from the strong oppressor, Like some accursed fiend, who,'scaped from hell, Is all his end of war. And, when he draws Poisons the balmy air through which he flies, The sword to punish, like relenting Heaven, He blasts the bearded corn, and loaded branches, He seems unwilling to deface his kind.
The labouring hind's best hopes, and marks his Mir. So rich his soul, in every virtuous
way with ruin. That, had not nature made him great by birth, Pr. But see his fate! The mighty Tamerlane Yet all the brave had sought him for their friend. Comes, like the proxy of inquiring Heaven, The Christian prince, Axalla, nicely bred To judge, and to redress. (Flourish of Trumpets. In polished arts of European courts, For him forsakes his native Italy,
Enter TAMERLANE, Guards, and other And lives a happy exile in his service.
Attendants. Pr. Pleased with the gentle manners of that Tam. Yet, yet a little, and destructive slaughter prince,
Shall rage around, and mar this beauteous prosOur mighty lord is lavish of his friendship;
pect; Though Omar and the Tartar lords repine, Pass but an hour, which stands betwixt the lives And loudly tax their monarch as too partial. Of thousands and eternity, what change
Zam. Ere the mid hour of night, from tent to tent, Shall hasty death make in yon glittering plain! Unwearied, through the numerous host he past, Oh, thou fell monster, War! that in a moment Viewing, with careful eyes, each several quarter; Layest waste the noblest part of the creation, Whilst from his looks, as from divinity,
The boast and masterpiece of the great Maker, The soldiers took presage, and cried, " Lead on, That wears, in vain, the impression of his image, Great Alla, and our emperor! lead on
Unprivileged from thee !To victory, and everlasting fame.'
Health to our friends, and to our arms success, Mir. Hear you of Bajazet?
(To the Prince, ZAMA, and MIRVAN. Pr. Late in the evening
Such as the cause for which we fight deserves ! A slave, of near attendance on his person, Pr. Nor can we ask beyond what Heaven bo'Scaped to our camp. From him we learned, the
Preventing still our wishes. See, great six With rage redoubled, for the fight prepares ; The universal joy your soldiers wear,