Page:Poet Lore, volume 26, 1915.djvu/319

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303
FRANTÍŠEK ADOLF ŠUBERT

vassal service any more. (Aloud.) We brought a decree that feudalism is abolished.

Řehák and Voices.—Decree? From whom? From the emperor? From Vienna?

Maršálek.—From Hradec, from the district government, but there they got it from our ruler the Emperor Joseph II.

Řehák and Neighbors (Singly).—Feudalism has fallen! It is no more. We have no more service! Who would have thought it? Feudalism abolished!

Charvát (Comes hastily from the castle with Hruška).—What is happening?

Slavík (Pointing to Maršálek).—He has told all! I couldn’t keep him from it!

Charvát.—A thousand bullets into you, you good-for-nothing! Take him away and put him on the block. Throw him onto the hard stone and in an hour apply fifty lashes! (The soldiers lead Maršálek away).

 

Scene XVIII

 

The Preceding. Dvořák and Kyral. Two Farmers relating everything to them.

 

Řehák and Voices.—See! He betrayed the truth! Feudalism has fallen!

Kyral.—That’s possible and certain! Our good Emperor Joseph long ago wished to abolish it. Now he has annulled it. Long live Emperor Joseph II. Vivát!

Řehák and Voices.—Vivát! Vivát! We will bury feudalism!

Mad Martin.—Why, I said there was going to be a funeral! Now they’re going to bury.

Dvořák.—If God has granted that I came in this great moment I want to be happy because of it to the end of my life. Liberty is coming for the people, their fetters will fall and they will stand free where up to this instant they have been slaves of the castles! (Points to castle).

Matouš (Angrily).—Such—such—such speeches should not be allowed! I say— —

Výrava.—Slowly, slowly, neighbor, don’t believe fairy-tales off-hand. Who knows what and how— —

Kyral.—We’ll find that out at once. Let us send to the castle