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CUPID'S REVENGE. A TRAGEDY. BY FRANCIS
BEAUMONT AND JOHN FLETCHER.
Leucippus, the King's Son, takes to mistress, Bacha, a Wi
dow; but being questioned by his Father, to preserve her honour, swears that she is chaste. The old King admires her, and on the credit of that Oath, while his Son is absent, marries her. Leucippus, when he discovers the dreadful consequences of the deceit which he had used to his Father, counsels his friend Ismenus never to speak a falsehood in any case.
Leu. My sin, Ismenus, has wrought all this ill: And I beseech thee to be warn'd by me, And do not lie, if any man should ask thee But how thou dost, or what a clock 'tis now. Be sure thou do not lie, make no excuse For him that is most near thee: never let The most officious falsehood ’scape thy tongue; For they above (that are entirely truth) Will make that seed which thou hast sown of lies, Yield miseries a thousand fold Upon thine head, as they have done on-mine. Leucippus and his wicked Mother-in-law, Bacha, are left
alone together for the first time after her marriage with the King, his Father.
Bach. He stands
As if he grew there, with his eyes on earth.
Sir, you and I when we were last together
Kept not this distance, as we were afraid
Of blasting by ourselves.
Leu. Madam, 'tis true,
Heaven pardon it.
Bach. Amen, sir : you may think
That I have done you wrong in this strange marriage.
Leu. 'Tis past now.
Bach. But it was no fault of mine :
The world had call’d me mad, had I refus'd
The king: nor laid I any train to catch him,
It was your own oaths did it.
Leu. Tis a truth,
That takes my sleep away; but would to heaven,
If it had so been pleas’d, you had refus'd him,
Though I had gratified that courtesy
With having you myself: but since 'tis thus,
I do beseech you that you will be honest
From henceforth; and not abuse his credulous age,
Which you may easily do. As for myself,
What I can say, you know alas too well,
Is tied within me; here it will sit like lead,
But shall offend no other, it will pluck me
Back from my entrance into any mirth,
As if a servant came and whisper'd with me
Of some friend's death : but I will bear myself
To you, with all the due obedience
A son owes to a mother; more than this
Is not in me, but I must leave the rest
To the just gods, who in their blessed time,
When they have given me punishment enough
For my rash sin, will mercifully find
As unexpected means to ease my grief
As they did now to bring it.
Bach. Grown so godly?
This must not be, and I will be to you
No other than a natural mother ought;
And for my honesty, so you will swear
Never to urge me, I shall keep it safe
From any other.
Leu. Bless me, I should urge you!
Bach. Nay, but swear then, that I may be at peace,
For I do feel a weakness in myself
That can deny you nothing ; if you tempt me
I shall embrace sin as it were a friend,
And run to meet it.
Leu. If you knew how far
It were from me, you would not urge an oath.
But for your satisfaction, when I'tempt you ---
Bach. Swear not. I cannot move him. This sad talk
Of things past help, does not become us well.
Shall I send one for my musicians, and we'll dance ?
Leu. Dance, madam?
Bach. Yes, a Lavolta.
Leu. I cannot dance, madam.
Buch. Then let's be merry.
Leu. I am as my fortunes bid me.
Do not you see me sour?
And why think you I smile?
Leu. I am so far from any joy myself,
I cannot fancy a cause of mirth.
Bach. I'll tell you. We are alone.
Leu. 'Tis true: what then,
Bach. What then ?
You make my smiling now break into laughter :
What think you is to be done then ?
Leu. We should pray to heaven for mercy.
Bach. Pray! that were a way indeed
To pass the time.
Leu. I dare not think I understand you.
Buch. I must teach you then. Come kiss me.
Leu. Kiss you?
Bach. Yes, be not asham’d:
You did it not yourself, I will forgive you.
Leu. Keep, you displeased gods, the due respect
I ought to bear unto this wicked woman,
As she is now my mother: haste within me,
Lest I add sins to sins, till no repentance
Will cure me.
Bach. Leave these melancholy moods,
That I may swear thee welcome on thy lips
A thousand times.
Leu. Pray leave this wicked talk ;
You do not know to what my father's wrong
May urge me.
Bach. I'm careless, and do weigh
The world, my life, and all my after hopes,
Nothing without thy love: mistake me not,
Thy love, as I have had it, free and open
As wedlock is within itself, what say you ?
Bach. Pity me, behold a duchess
Kneels for thy mercy. What answer will you give ?
Leu. They that can answer must be less amaz'd
Than I am now : you see my tears deliver
My meaning to you.
Bach. Shall I be contemn'd?.
Thou art a beast, worse than a savage beast,
To let a lady kneel.
Leu. 'Tis your will, heaven : but let me bear me
Like myself, however she does.
Bach. How fond was I
To beg thy love! I'll force thee to my will.
Dost thou not know that I can make the king
Doat as my list? yield quickly, or, by heaven,
I'll have thee kept in prison for my purpose.
Leu. All you have nam’d, but making of me sín
With you, you may command, but never that:
Say what you will, I'll hear you as becomes me;
If yoy speak, I will not follow your counsel,
Neither will I tell the world to your disgrace,
But give you the just honour
That is due from me to my father's wife.
Bach. Lord, how full of wise formality you're grown
Of late : but you were telling me,
You could have wish'd that I had married you;
If you will swear so yet, I'll make away ,
Leu. You are a strumpet.
Bach. Nay I care not
· For all your railings; they will batter walls
And take in towns as soon as trouble me:
Tell him ; I care not; I shall undo you only,
Which is no matter.
Leu. I appeal to you, .
Still, and for ever, that are and cannot be other.
Madam, I see 'tis in your power
To work your will on hin: and I desire you
To lay what trains you will for my wish'd death,
But suffer him to find his quiet grave
In peace; alas he never did you wrong ;
And farther I beseech you pardon me
For the ill word I gave you, for however
You may deserve, it became not me
To call you so, but passion urges me
I know not whither; my heart break now, and ease me