The Mourning Bride/Act II

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Act II, Scene 1[edit]

Representing the Ile of a Temple. -


GAR. This Way, we're told, Osmyn was seen to walk;
Choosing this lonely Mansion of the Dead,
To mourn, brave Heli, thy mistaken Fate.

HEL. Let Heav'n with Thunder to the Centre strike me,
If to arise in very Deed from Death,
And to revisit with my long clos'd Eyes
This living Light, could to my Soul, or Sense,
Afford a Thought, or Glimpse of Joy,
In least Proportion to the vast Delight
I feel, to hear of Osmyn's Name; to hear
That Osmyn lives, and I again shall see him.

GAR. Unparalell'd Fidelity!
I've heard, with Admiration, of your Friendship;
And could, with equal Joy and Envy, view
The Transports of your Meeting.

PEREZ. Yonder, my Lord, behold the Noble Moor.

HEL. Where? where?

GAR. I see him not.

PEREZ. I saw him when I spoke, thwarting my View,
And striding with distemper'd Haste; his Eyes
Seem'd Flame, and flash'd upon me with a Glance;
Then forward shot their Fires, which he pursu'd,
As to some Object frightful, yet not fear'd.

GAR. Let's haste to follow him, and know the Cause.

HEL. My Lord, let me entreat you to forbear:
Leave me alone, to find and cure the Cause.
I know his Melancholy, and such Starts
Are usual to his Temper. It might raise him
To act some Violence upon himself,
So to be caught in an unguarded Hour,
And when his Soul gives all her Passions Way,
Secure and loose in friendly Solitude.
I know his Noble Heart would burst with Shame,
To be surpriz'd by Strangers in its Frailty.

GAR. Go, gen'rous Heli, and relieve your Friend.
Far be it from me, officiously to pry
Or Press upon the Privacies of others

HEL. Y'are truly Noble. [Exit.]

GAR. Perez, the King expects from our Return
To have his Jealousie confirm'd, or clear'd,
Of that appearing Love which Zara bears
To Osmyn; but some other Opportunity
Must make that plain.

PEREZ. To me 'twas long since plain,
And every Look of his and hers confess it.

GAR. If so, Unhappiness attends their Love,
And I cou'd pity 'em. I hear some coming,
The Friends perhaps are met; let us avoid 'em. [Exeunt. -]


ALM. It was a fancy'd Noise; for all is hush'd.

LEO. It bore the Accent of a Human Voice.

ALM. It was thy Fear, or else some transient Wind
Whistling thro' Hollows of the vaulted Isle.
We'll listen-

LEO. Hark!

ALM. No, all is hush'd, and still as Death- 'Tis dreadful!
How rev'rend is the Face of this tall Pile,
Whose ancient Pillars rear their Marble Heads,
To bear aloft its arch'd and pond'rous Roof,
By its own Weight made stedfast and immoveable,
Looking Tranquility. It strikes an Awe
And Terror on my aking Sight; the Tombs
And Monumental Caves of Death look Cold,
And shoot a Chilness to my trembling Heart.
Give me thy Hand, and speak to me; nay, speak,
And let me hear thy Voice;
My own affrights me with its Echo's.

LEO. Let us return; the Horrour of this Place
And Silence, will encrease your Melancholy.

ALM. It may my Fears, but cannot add to that.
No, I will on; shew me Anselmo's Tomb,
Lead me o'er Bones and Skulls and mouldring Earth
Of Humane Bodies; for I'll mix with them,
Or wind me in the Shroud of some pale Coarse
Yet green in Earth, rather than be the Bride
Of Garcia's more detested Bed. That Thought
Exerts my Spirits; and my present Fears
Are lost in dread of greater Ill. Shew me,
Lead me, for I am bolder grown: Lead me
Where I may kneel and pay my Vows again
To him, to Heav'n, and my Alphonso's Soul.

LEO. I go; but Heav'n can tell with what Regret. [Exeunt.]

Act II, Scene 2[edit]

The Vaults of the Temple. -

The Scene opening discovers a Place of Tombs. One Monument fronting the View, greater than the rest. -

Enter HELI. -

HELI. I wander thro' this Maze of Monuments,
Yet cannot find him- Hark! sure 'tis the Voice
Of one complaining- There it sounds- I'll follow it. [Exit. -]


LEO. Behold the Sacred Vault, within whose Womb
The poor Remains of good Anselmo rest;
Yet fresh and unconsum'd by Time, or Worms.
What do I see? O Heav'n! either my Eyes
Are false, or still the Marble Door remains
Unclos'd; the Iron Grates that lead to Death
Beneath, are still wide stretch'd upon their Hinge,
And staring on us with unfolded Leaves.

ALM. Sure 'tis the friendly Yawn of Death for me;
And that dumb Mouth, significant in Show,
Invites me to the Bed where I alone
Shall rest; shews me the Grave, where Nature wearied,
And long oppres'd with Woes and bending Cares,
May lay the Burden down, and sink in Slumbers
Of Eternal Peace. Death, grim Death, will fold
Me, in his leaden Arms, and press me close
To his cold clayie Breast: My Father then
Will cease his Tyranny; and Garcia too
Will fly my pale Deformity with loathing.
My Soul, enlarg'd from its vile Bonds, will mount,
And range the Starry Orbs, and Milky Ways,
Of that refulgent World, where I shall swim
In liquid Light, and float on Seas of Bliss
To my Alphonso's Soul. O Joy too great!
O Extasie of Thought! Help me, Anselmo;
Help me, Alphonso; take me, reach thy Hand;
To thee, to thee I call, to thee, Alphonso:
O Alphonso.

[OSMYN ascending from the Tomb.]

OSM. Who calls that wretched thing, that was Alphonso?

ALM. Angels, and all the Host of heaven, support me!

OSM. Whence is that Voice, whose Shrilness, from the Grave,
And growing to his dead Father's Shrowd, roots up Alphonso?

ALM. Mercy and Providence! O speak to it,
Speak to it quickly, quickly; speak to me,
Comfort me, help me, hold me, hide me, hide me,
Leonora, in thy Bosome, from the Light,
And from my Eyes.

OSM. Amazement and Illusion! rivet me
To Earth, and nail me where I stand, ye Powers, [Coming forward.]
That motionless I may be still deceiv'd.
Let me not stir, nor breath, lest I dissolve
That tender, lovely Form of painted Air,
So like Almeria. Ha! it sinks, it falls;
I'll catch it 'ere it goes, and grasp her Shade.
'Tis Life! 'tis warm! 'tis she! 'tis she her self!
Nor Dead, nor Shade, but breathing and alive!
It is Almeria! 'tis my Wife! -

Enter HELI. -

LEO. O Heav'n unfold these Wonders!
Alas, she stirs not yet, nor lifts her Eyes;
He too is fainting- Help me, help me, Stranger,
Who 'ere thou art, and lend thy Hand to raise
These Bodies.

HEL. By Heav'n 'tis he, and with- ha! Almeria!
Almeria! O Miracle of Happiness!
O Joy unhop'd for, does Almeria live!

OSM. Where is she?
Let me behold and touch her, and be sure
'Tis she; shew me her Face, and let me feel
Her Lips with mine- 'Tis she, I'm not deceiv'd;
I taste her Breath, I warm'd her and am warm'd.
Look up, Almeria, bless me with thy Eyes;
Look on thy Love, thy Lover, and thy Husband,
Look on Alphonso.

ALM. I've sworn I'll not wed Garcia; why d'ye force me?
Is this a Father?

OSM. Thy Father is not here, nor Garcia: I am
Neither, nor what I seem, but thy Alphonso.
Wilt thou not know me? Hast thou then forgot?
Hast thou thy Eyes, yet can'st not see Alphonso?
Am I so alter'd, or art thou so chang'd,
That seeing my Disguise, thou seest not me?

ALM. It is, it is Alphonso, 'tis his Face,
His Voice, I know him now, I know him all.
O take me to thy Arms, and bear me hence,
Back to the Bottom of the boundless Deep,
To Seas beneath, where thou so long hast dwelt.
O how hast thou return'd? How hast thou charm'd
The wildness of the Waves and Rocks to this?
That thus relenting, they have giv'n thee back
To Earth, to Light and Life, to Love and me.

OSM. O I'll not ask, nor answer how, or why,
We both have backward trod the Paths of Fate,
To meet again in Life; to know I have thee,
Is knowing more than any circumstance
Or Means by which I have thee-
To fold thee thus, to press thy balmy Lips,
And gaze upon thy Eyes, is so much Joy,
I have not leisure to reflect, or know,
Or trifle Time in thinking.

ALM. Let me look on thee, yet a little more.

OSM. What would'st thou? thou dost put me from thee.

ALM. Yes.

OSM. Why? what dost thou mean? why dost thou gaze so?

ALM. I know not, 'tis to see thy Face, I think-
It is too much! too much to bear and live!
To see him thus again is such profusion
Of delight, I cannot bear it- I shall
Be mad- I cannot be transported thus.

OSM. Thou Excellence, thou Joy, thou Heav'n of Love!

ALM. Where hast thou been? and how art thou alive?
How is all this? All-powerful Heav'n, what are we!
O my strain'd Heart- let me behold thee,
For I weep to see thee- Art thou not paler?
Much, much, alas; how thou art chang'd!

OSM. Not in my Love.

ALM. No, no, thy Griefs have done this to thee.
Thou hast wept much, Alphonso; and, I fear,
Too much lamented me.

OSM. Wrong not my Love, to say too much.
No more, my Life; talk not of Tears or Grief;
Affliction is no more, now thou art found.
Why dost thou weep, and hold thee from my Arms,
My Arms which ake to fold thee fast, and grow
To thee with twining? Come, come to my Heart.

ALM. I will, for I should never look enough.
They would have marry'd me; but I had sworn
To Heav'n and thee, and sooner wou'd have dy'd-

OSM. Perfection of all Truth!

ALM. Indeed I wou'd- Nay, I wou'd tell thee all,
If I cou'd speak; how I have mourn'd and pray'd;
For I have pray'd to thee as to a Saint:
And thou hast heard my Prayer; for thou art come
To my Distress, to my Despair, which Heav'n
Without thee cou'd not cure.

OSM. Grant me but Life, good Heaven, but length of Days,
To pay some Part, some little of this Debt,
This countless Summ of Tenderness and Love,
For which I stand engag'd to this All-excellence:
Then bear me in a Whirlwind to my Fate,
Snatch me from Life, and cut me short unwarn'd;
Then, then 'twill be enough- I shall be Old,
I shall have liv'd beyond all Aera's then
Of yet unmearsur'd Time; when I have made
This exquisite, amazing Goodness,
Some Recompence of Love and matchless Truth.

ALM. 'Tis more than recompence, to see thy Face:
If Heav'n is greater Joy it is no Happiness,
For 'tis not to be born- What shall I say?
I have a thousand Things to know, and ask,
And speak- That thou art here, beyond all Hope,
All Thought; that all at once thou art before me,
And with such Suddenness hast hit my Sight,
Is such Surprize, such Mystery, such Extasy,
As hurries all my Soul, and dozes my weak Sense.
Sure from thy Father's Tomb thou didst arise!

OSM. I did, and thou didst call me.

ALM. How cam'st thou there? Wert thou alone?

OSM. I was, and lying on my Father's Lead,
When broken Echoes of a distant Voice
Disturb'd the Sacred Silence of the Vault,
In Murmurs round my Head. I rose and listened,
And thought I heard thy Spirit call Alphonso;
I thought I saw thee too; but O, I thought not
I indeed shou'd see thee-

ALM. But still, how cam'st thee hither? how thus?- Ha!
What's he, that like thy self, is started here
E're seen?

OSM. Where? ha! what do I see? Antonio here?
My Friend too safe!

HEL. Most happily, in finding you thus bless'd.

ALM. More Miracles! Antonio too escap'd!

OSM. And twice escap'd, both from the Wreck of Seas
And Rage of War: For in the Fight I saw
Him fall.

HEL. But fell unhurt, a Prisoner as your self,
And as your self made free; hither I came
To seek you, where I knew your Grief would lead you,
To lament Anselmo.-

OSM. There are no Wonders, or else all is Wonder.

HEL. I saw you on the Ground, and rais'd you up.
I saw Almeria-

OSM. I saw her too, and therefore saw not thee.

ALM. Nor I, nor could I, for my Eyes were yours.

OSM. What means the Bounty of All-gracious Heav'n,
That thus with open Hand it scatters Good,
As in a Waste of Mercy?
Where will this end! but Heav'n is Infinite
In all, and can continue to bestow,
When scanty Numbers shall be spent in telling.

LEO. Or I'm deceiv'd, or I beheld the Glimpse
Of two in shining Habits cross the Ile,
And bending this way.

ALM. Sure I have dreamt, if we must part so soon.

OSM. I wish our Parting were a Dream, or we
Could sleep till we again were met.

HEL. Zara with Selim, Sir I saw and know 'em:
You must be quick, for Love will lend her Wings.

ALM. What Love? who is she?

OSM. She's the Reverse of thee; she's my Unhappiness.
Harbour no Thought that my disturb thy Peace;
But gently take thy self away, lest she
Should come and see the straining of my Eyes
To follow thee. I'll think how we may meet
To part no more; my Friend will tell thee all;
How I escap'd, how I am here, and thus;
How I'm not call'd Alphonso, now, but Osmyn;
And he Heli. All, all he will unfold.

ALM. Sure we shall meet again.

OSM. We shall; we part not but to meet again.
Gladness and Warmth of ever-kindling Love
Dwell with thee, and revive thy Heart in Absence.

[Ex. ALM. LEO. and HELI.]

Act II, Scene 3[edit]

The Same. -

OSM. Yet I behold her- Now no more.
Turn your Lights inward, Eyes, and look
Upon my Thought; so shall you still behold her.
It wonnot be; O, impotence of Sight!
Mechanick Sense, which to exterior Objects
Owest thy Faculty.-
Not seeing of Election, but Necessity.
Thus do our eyes, like common Mirrours,
Successively reflect succeeding Images;
Not what they would, but must; a Star, or Toad:
Just as the Hand of Chance administers.
Not so the Mind, whose undetermin'd View
Revolves, and to the present adds the past:
Essaying further to Futurity;
But that in vain. I have Almeria here
At once, as I have seen her often;
I'll muse on that, lest I exceed in thinking. -

Enter ZARA attended by SELIM. -

ZARA. See where he stands, folded and fix'd to Earth,
Stiff'ning in Thought; a Statue among Statues.
Why, cruel Osmyn, dost thou fly me thus?
Is it well done? Is this then the Return
For Fame, for Honour, and for Empire lost?
But what is loss of Honour, Fame and Empire?
Is this the Recompence of Love?
Why dost thou leave my Eyes, and fly my Arms,
To find this place of Horrour and Obscurity?
Am I more loathsome to thee, than the Grave,
That thou dost seek to shield thee there, and shun
My Love? But to the Grave I'll follow thee-
He looks not, minds not, hears not; barbarous Man,
Am I neglected thus? Am I despis'd?
Not heard! Ungrateful Osmyn.

OSM. Ha, Zara!

ZARA. Yes, Traytor; Zara, lost, abandon'd Zara,
Is a regardless Suppliant, now, to Osmyn.
The Slave, the Wretch that she redeem'd from Death,
Disdains to listen now, or look on Zara.

OSM. Far be the Guilt of such Reproaches, from me;
Lost in my self, and blinded by my Thoughts,
I saw you not.

ZARA. Now, then you see me-
But with such dumb and thankless Eyes you look,
Better I was unseen, than seen thus coldly.

OSM. What would you from a Wretch, that came to mourn;
And only for his Sorrows chose this Solitude?
Look round; Joy is not here, nor Cheerfulness.
You have pursu'd Misfortune, to its Dwelling,
Yet look for Gaiety and Gladness there.

ZARA. Inhumane! why, why dost thou wrack me thus?
And with Perverseness, from the Purpose, answer?
What is't to me, this House of Misery?
What Joy do I require? if thou dost mourn,
I come to mourn with thee; to share thy Griefs,
And give thee in Exchange my Love.

OSM. O that's the greatest Grief- I am so poor,
I have not wherewithal to give again.

ZARA. Thou hast a Heart, though 'tis a savage one;
Give it me as it is; I ask no more
For all I've done, and all I have endur'd:
For saving thee, when I beheld thee first,
Driven by the Tide upon my Country's Coast,
Pale and expiring, drench'd in briny Waves,
Thou and thy Friend, 'till my Compassion sound thee;
Compassion! scarce will it own that Name, so soon,
So quickly was it Love; for thou wert Godlike
Ev'n then. Kneeling on Earth, I loos'd my Hair,
And with it dry'd thy wat'ry Cheeks; chafing
Thy Temples, till reviving Blood arose,
And like the morn vermilion'd o'er thy Face.
O Heav'n! how did my Heart rejoice and ake,
When I beheld the Day-break of thy Eyes,
And felt the Balm of thy respiring Lips!

OSM. O call not to my Mind what you have done,
It sets a Debt of that Account before me,
Which shews me Bankrupt even in Hopes.

ZARA. The faithful Selim, and my Women know
The Dangers which I 'tempted to conceal you.
You know how I abus'd the credulous King;
What Arts I us'd to make you pass on him,
When he receiv'd you as the Prince of Fez;
And as my Kinsman, honour'd and advanc'd you.
O, why do I relate what I have done?
What did I not? Was't not for you this War
Commenc'd? Not knowing who you were, nor why
You hated Manuel, I urg'd my Husband
On to this Invasion; where he was lost,
Where all is lost, and I am made a Slave.
Look on me now, from Empire fall'n to Slavery;
Think on my Suff'ring first, then look on me;
Think on the Cause of all, then view thy self:
Reflect on Osmyn, and then look on Zara,
The fall'n, the lost, the Captive Zara.
What then is Osmyn?

OSM. A fatal Wretch- a huge stupendous Ruine,
That tumbling on its Prop, crush'd all beneath,
And bore contiguous Pallaces to Earth.

ZARA. Yet thus, thus fall'n, thus levell'd with the vilest
If I have gain'd thy Love, 'tis glorious Ruine;
Ruine, 'tis still to reign, and to be more
A Queen; for what are Riches, Empire, Power,
But larger Means to gratifie the Will?
The Steps on which we tread, to rise, and reach
Our Wish; and that obtain'd, down with the Scaffolding
Of Sceptres, Crowns, and Thrones; they've serv'd their End
And are, like Lumber, to be left and scorn'd.

OSM. Why was I made the Instrument, to throw
In Bonds, the Frame of this exalted Mind?

ZARA. We may be free; the Conquerour is mine;
In Chains unseen, I hold him by the Heart,
And can unwind, or strain him as I please.
Give me thy Love, I'll give thee Liberty.

OSM. In vain you offer, and in vain require
What neither can bestow. Set free your self,
And leave a Slave the Wretch that would be so.

ZARA. Thou canst not mean so poorly, as thou talk'st.

OSM. Alas, you know me not.

ZARA. Not who thou art;
But what, this last Ingratitude declares,
This groveling Baseness- Thou say'st true, I know
Thee not, for what thou art, yet wants a Name:
But something so unworthy, and so vile,
That to have lov'd thee, makes me yet more lost,
Than all the Malice of my other Fate.
Traitor, Monster, cold and perfidious Slave;
A Slave, not daring to be free! nor dares
To love above him, for 'tis dangerous:
'Tis that, I know; for thou dost look, with Eyes
Sparkling Desire, and trembling to possess.
I know my Charms have reach'd thy very Soul,
And thrill'd thee through with darted Fires; but thou
Dost fear so much, thou dar'st not wish. The King!
There, there's the dreadful Sound, the King's thy Rival!

SELIM. Madam, the King is here.

ZARA. As I could wish; by Heav'n I'll be reveng'd. -

Enter the KING, PEREZ, and Attendants. -

KING. Why does the Fairest of her Kind. withdraw
Her Shining from the Day, to gild this Scene
Of Death and Night? Ha! what Disorder's this?
Somewhat I heard of King and Rival mention'd.
What's he that dares be Rival to the King?
Or lift his Eyes to like, where I adore?

ZARA. There, he; your Prisoner, and that was my Slave.

KING. How? Better than my Hopes? Does she accuse him? [Aside.]

ZARA. Am I become so low by my Captivity,
And do your Arms so lessen, what they conquer,
That Zara must be made the Sport of Slaves?
And shall the Wretch, whom yester Sun, beheld
Waiting my Nod, the Creature of my Lord,
And me, presume to Day to plead audacious Love,
And build bold Hopes, on my dejected Fate?

KING. Better for him to tempt the Rage of Heav'n,
And wrench the Bolt red-hissing from the Hand
Of him that thunders, than but think that Insolence.
'Tis daring for a God. Hence, to the Wheel
With that Ixion, who aspires to hold
Divinity embrac'd; to Whips and Prisons
Drag him with speed, and rid me of his Face

[Guards carry off OSMYN.]

ZARA. Compassion led me to bemoan his State,
Whose former Faith had merited much more:
And through my Hopes in you, I promis'd Freedom
From his Chains; thence sprung his Insolence,
And what was Charity, he constru'd Love.

KING. Enough; his Punishment be what you please.
But let me lead you from this Place of Sorrow,
To one, where young Delights attend; and Joys
Yet new, unborn, and blooming in the Bud,
That wait to be full-blown at your Approach,
And spread like Roses to the Morning Sun:
Where, ev'ry Hour shall roll in circling Joys,
And Love, shall wing the tedious-wasting Day.
Life without Love is Load; and Time stands still:
What we refuse to him, to Death we give;
And then, then only, when we love, we live. [Ex. Omnes. -]