The Works of Sir John Suckling in prose and verse/Brennoralt
Presented at the Private House in Black-
Printed for Humphrey Moseley, and are to be
sold at his shop, at the Signe of the Prin-
ces Armes in St Pauls Churchyard.
|Sigismond,||King of Poland.|
|Miesta,||councillors to the King.|
|Villanor,||cavaliers and officers under Brennoralt.|
|Fresolin,||brother to Francelia.|
|Iphigene,||young Palatine of Plocence.|
|Palatine of Menseck,||Governor, one of the chief rebels.|
|Palatine of Trock,||a rebel.|
|Almerin,||a gallant rebel.|
|Francelia,||the Governor's daughter.|
|Orilla,||a waiting-woman to Francelia.|
|Raguelin,||a servant in the Governor's house, but spy to Brennoralt.|
Enter Brennoralt and Doran
Bren. I say, the Court is but a narrow circuit,
Though something elevate above the common;
A kind of ants' nest in the great wild field,
O'ercharg'd with multitudes of quick inhabitants
Are miserably busied to get in
What the loose foot of prodigality
As fast does throw abroad.
A most eternal place of low affronts,10
And then as low submissions.
High cowards in revenges 'mongst themselves,
And only valiant when they mischief others.
Dor. Stars that would have no names,15
But for the ills they threaten in conjunction.
Bren. A race of shallow and unskilful pilots,
Which do misguide the ship even in the calm,
And in great storms serve but as weight to sink it.
More, prithee, more: [alarum within] 'tis music to my melancholy.20
Sol. My lord,
A cloud of dust and men the sentinels from
The east gate discover; and, as they guess, the storm
Bends this way.
Bren. Let it be.
Sol. My lord?
Bren. Let it be.
I will not fight to-day: bid Stratheman25
Draw to the trenches. On, prithee, on! on!
Dor. The king
Employs a company of formal beards,
Men who have no other proofs of their long lives
But that they are old.30
And, if they are wise, 'tis for themselves, not others,
As old men ever are.[Alarum
Enter another Soldier
2nd Sol. Coronel, Coronel,
The enemy's at hand, kills all the sentries.35
Young Almerin leads them on again.
Bren. Let him lead them off again.
2nd Sol. Coronel?
Bren. Be gone! If th' art afraid, go hide thyself.
2nd Sol. What a devil ails he?[Exit40
Bren. This Almerin's the ague of the camp:
He shakes it once a day.
Dor. He's the ill conscience rather;
He never lets it rest. Would I were at home again!
'Sfoot, we lie here i' th' trenches, as if it were45
For a wind to carry us into th' other world.
Every hour we expect—I'll no more on't!
Dor. Not I, by heaven!
Bren. What, man! the worst is but fair death.50
Dor. And what will that amount to? a fair epitaph,
A fine account! I'll home, I swear.
Str. Arm, arm, my lord, and show yourself! all's lost else.
Dor. Why so?
Str. The rebels, like an unruly flood,
Roll o'er the trenches, and throw down all before them.55
Str. We cannot make a stand.
Bren. He would outrival me in honour too,
As well as love; but that he must not do.
Help me, Stratheman.[Puts on armour60
The danger now grows worthy of our swords;
And, O Doran, I would to heaven there were
No other storms than the worst tempest here![Exeunt
Enter Marinel, throwing down one he carries
The sun's the neatest surgeon I know, and th' honestest.
If thou recoverest, why, so: if not, the cure's paid—they
have maul'd us.
Enter Grainevert, with another upon his back
Gra. A curse light on this powder! It stays valour,5
ere it's half-way on its journey. What a disadvantage
fight we upon in this age! He that did well heretofore
had the broad fair day to show it in, witnesses enough.
We must believe one another: 'tis night, when we begin.
Eternal smoke and sulphur smalky—by this hand, I can10
bear with thee no longer! How now? dead, as I live!
Stol'n away just as he us'd to wench. Well, go thy
ways: for a quiet drinker and dier, I shall never know
thy fellow. [Searches his pockets] These trifles, too,
about thee? There was never an honester poor wretch15
born, I think. Look i' th' t'other pocket, too—hum!
Mar. Who's that?
Gra. 'Tis I: how goes matters?
Mar. Scurvily enough;20
Yet, since our Colonel came, th'ave got no ground
Of us—a weak sculler against wind and tide
Would have done as much. Hark!
This way the torrent bears.[Exeunt
Enter Fresolin, Almerin, and Rebels
Fre. The villains all have left us.
Alm. Would they had left25
Their fears behind them! but come, since we must———
Enter Brennoralt, Doran, Stratheman, with Soldiers
Stratheman, skirt on the left hand with the horse,
And get betwixt these and that body: they're
New rallied up for rescue.[Brennoralt charges through
Dor. Th'are ours.30
I do not see my game yet.[Exeunt
A shout within. Re-enter Brennoralt, Stratheman, Marinel
Bren. What shout is that?
Str. They have taken Almerin, my lord.
Bren. Almerin? the devil thank 'em for't!
When I had hunted hard all day, and now35
At length unherded the proud deer, the curs
Have snatch'd him up.
Sound a retreat: there's nothing now behind.
Who saw Doran?
Str. Shall we bring Almerin in?40
Bren. No; gazing is low triumph;
Convey him fairly to the king; he fought
Dor. What youth was that whom you bestrid, my lord,
And sav'd from all our swords to-day? Was he45
Not of the enemy?
Bren. It may be so.
Str. The governor's son, Fresolin, his mistress' brother.[In Doran's ear
Bren. No matter who. 'Tis pity the rough hand
Of war should early courages destroy,
Before they bud, and show themselves i' th' heat50
Mar. I threw, my lord, a youth upon a bank,
Which seeking, after the retreat, I found
Dead, and a woman—the pretty daughter of
The forester, Lucilia.55
Bren. See, see, Doran, a sad experiment!
Woman's the cowardli'st and coldest thing
The world brings forth: yet love, as fire works water,
Makes it boil o'er, and do things contrary
To 'ts proper nature. I should shed a tear,60
Could I tell how! Ah, poor Lucilia!
Thou didst for me what did as ill become thee.
Pray, see her gently bury'd.
Boy, send the surgeon to the tent—I bleed.
What lousy cottages th'ave given our souls!65
Each petty storm shakes them into disorder;
And't costs more pains to patch them up again,
Than they are worth by much. I'm weary of
Enter Villanor, Grainevert, Marinel, and Stratheman
Gra. Villanor! welcome, welcome, whence camest thou?
I wear the king's highway still on my boots.
Gra. A pretty riding phrase—and how, and how?
Vil. Faith, reasonable; those toys were never dear,
Thou know'st: a little time and industry
They'll cost, but, in good faith, not much: some few
There are, that set themselves at mighty rates.
Gra. Which we o' th' wise pass by, as things o'ervalued10
In the market. Is't not so?
Vil. Y'have said, sir. Hark you,
Your friend and rival's married, has obtained
The long-lov'd lady, and is such an ass after't.
Gra. Hum! 'tis ever so. The motions of married people
are as of other naturals—violent gentlemen to the place,15
and calm in it.
Mar. We know this too, and yet we must be fooling.
Gra. Faith, women are the baggage of life: they are troublesome,
And hinder us in the great march; and yet
We cannot be without 'em.
Mar. You speak very well20
Thou art a wit too, I warrant, in our absence?
Vil. Hum! No, no, a poor pretender,
A candidate or so,—'gainst the next Sessions—25
Wit enough to laugh at you here.
Gra. Like enough;
Valour's a crime the wise have still reproached
Unto the valiant, and the fools too.
Vil. Raillerie à part, Grainevert, what accommodation shall we find here?
Gra. Clean straw, sweetheart, and meat—when thou canst get it.30
Vil. Hum! straw?
Gra. Yes, that's all will be betwixt incest;
You and your mother Earth must lie together.
Vil. Prithee, let us be serious; will this last?
How goes affairs?35
Vil. But well?
'Tis now upon the turning of the balance;
A most equal business40
Betwixt rebellion and loyalty.
Vil. What dost mean?
Gra. Why! which shall be the virtue, and which the vice.
Vil. How the devil can that be?
Gra. O, success is a rare paint, hides all the ugliness.45
Vil. Prithee, what's the quarrel?
Gra. Nay, for that excuse us. Ask the children of
peace; they have the leisure to study it; we know nothing
of it: liberty, they say.
Vil. 'Sfoot, let the king make an act that any man may50
be unmarried again: there's liberty for them! a race of
half-witted fellows quarrel about freedom, and all that
while allow the bonds of matrimony!
Gra. You speak very well, sir.
Enter King, Lords, Brennoralt
Mar. Soft, the king and council.55
Gra. Look, they follow after, like tired spaniels quest
sometimes for company, that is, concur; and that's their
Mar. They are as weary of this sport as a young unthrift
of's land; any bargain to be rid on't. Can you blame60
them? Who's that?
Gra. Brennoralt, our brave Coronel: a discontent, but
what of that? who is not?
Vil. His face speaks him one.
Gra. Thou art i' th' right: he looks still as if he were65
saying to Fortune, 'Huswife, go about your business!'
Come, let's retire to Barathen's tent. Taste a bottle, and
speak bold truths; that's our way now.
[Exeunt. Manent King and Lords
Miesta. Think not of pardon, sir;
Rigour and mercy us'd in states uncertainly,70
And in ill times, look not like th' effects
Of virtue, but necessity. Nor will
They thank your goodness, but your fears.
Mel. My lords,
Revenge in princes should be still imperfect:
It is then handsom'st, when the king comes to75
Reduce, not ruin.
Bren. Who puts but on the face of punishing,
And only gently cuts, but prunes rebellion:
He makes that flourish which he would destroy.
Who would not be a rebel, when the hopes80
Are vast, the fears but small?
Mel. Why, I would not,
Nor you, my lord, nor you, nor any here.
Fear keeps low spirits only in; the brave
Do get above it when they do resolve.
Such punishments, in infancy of war,85
Make men more desperate, not the more yielding.
The common people are a kind of flies:
They're caught with honey, not with wormwood, sir.
Severity exasp'rates the stirr'd humour;
And state-distempers turns into diseases.90
Bren. The gods forbid great Poland's state should be
Such as it dares not take right physic! Quarter
To rebels? Sir, when you give that to them,
Give that to me which they deserve. I would
Not live to see it.95
3rd Lord. Turn o'er your own and others chronicles,
And you shall find, great sir,
'That nothing makes a civil war long-liv'd,
But ransom and returning back the brands,
Which unextinct kindled still fiercer fires.'100
Mi. Mercy, bestow'd on those that do dispute
With swords, does lose the angel's face it has,
And is not mercy, sir, but policy
With a weak vizard on.
King. Y'have met my thoughts,
My lords; nor will it need larger debate.105
To-morrow, in the sight of the besieg'd,
The rebel dies. Miesta, 'tis your care.
The mercy of heav'n may be ofiended so,
That it cannot forgive: mortals' much more,
Which is not infinite, my lords.[Exeunt110
Enter Iphigene, Almerin, as in prison
Iph. O Almerin! would we had never known
The ruffle of the world! but were again
By Stolden banks in happy solitude;
When thou and I, shepherd and shepherdess
So oft by turns, as often still have wish'd,5
That we as eas'ly could have chang'd our sex,
As clothes. But, alas! all those innocent joys,
Like glorious mornings, are retir'd into
Dark sullen clouds, before we knew to value
What we had.
Alm. [to himself]. Fame and victory are light10
Huswifes, that throw themselves into the arms,
Not of the valiant, but the fortunate.
To be ta'en thus!
Alm. Nipp'd i' th' bud
Iph. My lord!
Alm. Foil'd! and by the man
That does pretend unto Francelia!15
Iph. What is't you do, my Almerin? sit still,
And quarrel with the winds, because there is
A shipwreck, tow'rds, and never think of saving
Alm. The bark? What should we do with that,
When the rich freight is lost, my name in arms?20
Iph. Who knows
What prizes are behind, if you attend
And wait a second voyage?
Alm. Never, never!
There are no second voyages in this;
The wounds of honour do admit no cure.25
Iph. Those slight ones which misfortune gives must needs,
Else why should mortals value it at all?
For who would toil to treasure up a wealth,
Which weak inconstancy did keep, or might
Iph. Oh, my lord, what news?
Mel. As ill30
As your own fears could give you:
The council has decreed him sudden death;
And all the ways to mercy are block'd up.
[She weeps and sighs
Alm. My Iphigene!
This was a misbecoming piece of love:35
Women would manage a disaster better.
[Iphigene weeps and sighs again
Again? thou art unkind!
Thy goodness is so great it makes thee faulty:
For, while thou think'st to take the trouble from me,
Thou givest me more by giving me thine too.40
Iph. Alas! I am indeed an useless trifle,
A dull, dull thing; for, could I now do anything
But grieve and pity, I might help. My thoughts
Labour to find a way; but, like to birds
In cages, though they never rest, they are45
But where they did set out at first.
Gao. My lords, your pardon. The prisoner must retire.
I have receiv'd an order from the king
Denies access to any.
Iph. He cannot be
So great a tyrant.
Alm. I thank him; nor can50
He use me ill enough. I only grieve
That I must die in debt—a bankrupt! Such
Thy love hath made me: my dear Iphigene,
Farewell. It is no time for ceremony.
Show me the way I must.[Exit Almerin and Gaoler55
Iph. Grief strove with such disorder to get out,
It stopp'd the passage, and sent back my words
That were already on the place.
Mel. Stay, there
Is yet a way.
Iph. Oh, speak it!
Mel. But there is
Danger in't, Iphigene—to thee high danger.60
Iph. Fright children in the dark with that, and let
Me know it. There is no such thing in nature,
If Almerin be lost.
Mel. Thus then: you must
Be taken pris'ner too, and by exchange
Iph. How can that be?[Aside65
Mel. Why——— [He studies, then calls to the Gaoler]
And pray him set his hand, about
This distance; his seal, too———[Shows him a writing
Gao. If't be no more———70
Mel. Tell him that Iphigene and I desire it.[Exit Gaoler
I'll send by Strathocles his servant
A letter to Morat thus sign'd and seal'd,
That shall inform the sudden execution;
Command him, as the only means75
To save his life, to sally out this night
Upon his quarters, and endeavour prisoners.
Name you as most secure and slightest guarded,
Best pledge of safety; but charge him that he kill
Not any, if it be avoidable;80
Lest 't should enrage the king yet more, and make
His death more certain.
Re-enter Gaoler with the writing
Gao. He understands you not, he says, but he
Has sent it.
Iph. But should Morat mistrust now, or this miscarry?
Leave it to me: I'll take the pilot's part,
And reach the port, or perish in the art.[Exeunt
Enter Almerin, in prison
Alm. Sleep is as nice as woman: the more I court it,
The more it flies me. Thy elder brother will
Be kinder yet: unsent-for death will come.
To-morrow! well, what can to-morrow do?
'Twill cure the sense5
Of honour lost: I and my discontents
Shall rest together. What hurt is there in this?
But death against the will
Is but a slovenly kind of potion;
And, though prescrib'd by heaven, it goes against10
So does it at fourscore too, when the soul's mew'd up
In narrow darkness, neither sees nor hears.
Pish, 'tis mere fondness in our nature,
A certain clownish cowardice, that still15
Would stay at home, and dares not venture into
Foreign countries, though better than its own!
Ha, what countries? for we receive descriptions
Of th' other world from our divines, as blind
Men take relation of this from us.20
My thoughts lead me into the dark, and there
They'll leave me. I'll no more on't. Within![Knocks
Alm. Some paper and a light! I'll write to th' king,
Defy him, and provoke a quick despatch.
I would not hold this ling'ring doubtful state25
So long again, for all that hope can give.
Enter three of the Guard with paper and ink
That sword does tempt me strangely:[Writing
Were't in my hands, 'twere worth th' other two.
But then the guard? it sleeps or drinks; maybe
To contrive it so that, if I should not pass,—30
Why, if I fall in't, 'tis better yet than pageantry,
A scaffold and spectators; more soldier-like—
[One of the Guard peeps over his shoulder
Uncivil villain, read my letter![Seizes his sword
1st Guard. Not I, not I, my lord.
Alm. Deny it too?
Guard. Murder, murder!35
Guard. Arm, arm![Guard run out
Alm. I'll follow, give the alarm with them.
'Tis least suspicious. Arm, arm, arm![Exit
Enter Soldiers, running over the stage, one throwing away his arms
All. The enemy, the enemy!
Sol. Let them come, let them come, let them come!
Alm. I hear fresh noise: the camp's in great disorder.40
Where am I now? 'tis strangely dark.
Goddess without eyes,
Be thou my guide, for blindness and sight
Are equal sense, of equal use, this night.[Exit
Enter Grainevert, Stratheman, Villanor, Marinel
Gra. Trouble not thyself, child of discontent:
'Twill take no hurt, I warrant thee; the State
Is but a little drunk, and when it has spew'd
Up that, that made it so, it will be well
Again—there's my opinion in short.5
Mar. Th' art i' th' right. The State's a pretty forehanded State,
And will do reason hereafter. Let's drink,
And talk no more on't.
All. A good motion, a good motion! let's drink.
Vil. Ay, ay, let's drink again.
Str. Come, to a mistress!10
Gra. Agreed. Name, name!
Vil. Anybody. Vermilia!
Gra. Away with it.
She's pretty to walk with,
And witty to talk with,
And pleasant too to think on:15
But the best use of all
Is, her health is a stale,
And helps us to make us drink on.
Str. Excellent. Gentlemen, if you say the word,
We'll vaunt credit, and affect high pleasure; shall we?20
Vil. Ay, ay, let's do that.
Str. What think ye of the sacrifice now?
Mar. Come, we'll ha't; for trickling tears are vain.
Vil. The sacrifice? what's that?
Str. Child of ignorance, 'tis a camp-health,25
An à-la-mode one. Grainevert, begin it.
Gra. Come, give it me.
Let me see which of them this rose will serve.[Pins up a rose.
Hum, hum, hum!
Bright star o' th' lower orb, twinkling inviter,30
Which draw'st as well as eyes, but sett'st men righter:
For who at thee begins, comes to the place
Sooner than he that sets out at the face:
Eyes are seducing lights, that the good women know,
And hang out these a nearer way to show.35
Mar. Fine and pathetical! Come, Villanor.
Vil. What's the matter?
Mar. Come, your liquor and your stanzas!
Vil. Of what?
Of anything your mistress has given you.
She never gave me anything but a box
O' th' ear for offering to kiss her once.
Str. Of that box then.45
Mar. Ay, ay, that box, of that box!
Vil. Since it must be, give me the poison then.[Drinks and spits
That box, fair mistress, which thou gavest to me,
In human guess is like to cost me three,
Three cups of wine and verses six:50
The wine will down; but verse for rhyme still sticks:
By which you all may easily, gentles, know,
I am a better drinker than a Po———
Mar. Doran! Doran!Gra.
A hall, a hall55
To welcome our friend!
For some liquor call;
A new or fresh face
Must not alter our pace,
But make us still drink the quicker:60
Wine, wine! O 'tis divine!
Come, fill it unto our brother:
What's at the tongue's end,
It forth does send,
And will not a syllable smother.
It unlocks the breast,
And throws out the rest,
And learns us to know each other.
Dor. Mad lads, have you been here ever since?70
Str. Yes, faith: thou seest the worst of us. We debauch
In discipline. Four-and-twenty hours is
The time: Baruthen had the watch to-night;
To-morrow 'twill be at my tent.
Dor. Good! and d'you know what has fall'n out to-night?75
Str. Yes, Grainevert and my lieutenant-coronel;
But they are friends again.
Dor. Pish, pish! The young Palatine of Plocence
And his grave guardian—surpris'd to-night,
Carry'd by the enemy out of his quarters.80
Gra. As a chicken by a kite out of a back-side,
Was't not so?
Dor. Is that all?
My coronel did not love him: he eats sweetmeats85
Upon a march too.
Dor. Well—hark ye, worse yet!
Almerin's gone! forced the court of guard
Where he was a prisoner, and has made an escape!
Gra. So pale and spiritless a wretch
Drew Priam's curtain in the dead of night,90
And told him half his Troy was burnt.
He was of my mind: I would have done so myself.
There is high suspicions abroad: ye shall
See strange discoveries i' the council of war.95
Gra. What council?
Dor. One called this morning. Y'are all sent to.
Gra. I will put on clean linen, and speak wisely.
Vil. 'Sfoot, we'll have a round first.
Gra. By all means, sir.
Come, let the State stay,100
And drink away;
There is no business above it:
It warms the cold brain,
Makes us speak in high strain;
He's a fool that does not approve it.105
The Macedon youth
Left behind him this truth,
That nothing is done with much thinking:
He drank and he fought,
Till he had what he sought;110
The world was his own by good drinking.[Exeunt
Enter General of the Rebels, Palatines of Trock and Menseck, Francelia, Almerin, Iphigene
Gen. As your friend,
My lord, he has the privilege of ours,
And may enjoy a liberty we would
Deny to enemies.
Alm. I thank your excellence. O Iphigene,5
He does not know
That thou the nobler part of friendship hold'st,
And dost oblige, while I can but acknowledge.
Men. Opportunity to statesmen
Is as the just degree of heat to chymists;10
It perfects all the work: and in this pris'ner
'Tis offered. We now are there, where men
Should still begin. To treat upon advantage,
The Palatine of Trock, and Menseck, with Almerin,
Shall to the king:15
Petitions shall be drawn, humble in form,
But such for matter
As the bold Macedonian youth would send
To men he did despise for luxury.
The first begets opinion of the world,20
Which looks not far, but on the outside dwells:
Th' other enforces courage in our own;
For bold demands must boldly be maintained.
Trock. Let all go on still in the public name,
But keep an ear open to particular offers.25
Liberty and public good are like great olios—
Must have the upper end still of our tables,
Though they are but for show.
Fran. Would I had ne'er seen this shape! 't has poison in't.
Yet where dwells good, if ill inhabits there?30
Mens. Press much religion;
For, though we dress the scruples for the multitude,
And for ourselves reserve th' advantages
(It being much pretext), yet it is necessary;
For things of faith are so abstruse and nice,35
They will admit dispute eternally.
So, howsoe'er other demands appear,
These never can be proved unreasonable:
The subject being of so fine a nature,
It not submits itself to sense, but 'scapes40
The trials which conclude all common doubts.
Fran. My lord, you use me as ill painters paint,
Who, while they labour to make faces fair,
Neglect to make them like.
There is no shipwreck of your virtues near,
That you should throw away any of all
Your excellences to save the dearest, modesty.
Gen. If they
Proceed with us, we can retreat unto50
Our expositions and the people's votes.
Refuse us wholly, then we plead the king's
Besieg'd, blocked up so straitly by some few,
Relief can find no way to enter to55
The king, or to get out to us.
Exclaim against it loud, till the Polonians
Think it high injustice, and wish us better yet.
Then easily do we rise unto our ends,
And will become their envy through their pity.60
At worst you may confirm our party there,
Increase it too. There is one Brennoralt;
Men call him gallant, but a discontent:
My cousin the king hath us'd him ill. Him a handsome
Whisper will draw. The afternoon shall perfect65
What we have loosely now resolv'd.
Iph. If in discourse of beauty
(So large an empire) I do wander, it will
Become your goodness, madam, to set me right,
And, in a country, where you yourself is queen,70
Not suffer strangers lose themselves.
Gen. What, making revenges, Palatine,
And taking prisoners fair ladies' hearts?
Iph. Yes, my lord,
And have no better fortune in this war75
Than in the other; for, while I think to take,
I am surpris'd myself.
Fran. Dissembler, would thou wert![Aside
Mens. You are a courtier, my lord.
The Palatine of Plocence, Almerin,80
Will grace the hymenæals:
And that they may be while his stay is here,
I'll court my lord in absence; take off for you
The little strangenesses virgins wear at first———
Look to the Palatine![Iphigene swoons85
Mor. How is't, my dearest Iphigene?[Aside
Iph. Not well, I would retire.
Gen. A qualm?
Lord. His colour stole away; sank down as water
In a weather-glass pressed by a warm hand.90
Mens. A cordial of kind looks———
Enter a Trumpet blinded
From the king!
Mor. Let us withdraw, and hear him.[Exeunt
Enter Brennoralt, Doran, Raguelin
Dor. Yes, to be married! What, are you mute now?
Bren. Thou cam'st too hastily upon me, put'st
So close the colours to mine eye, I could
Not see. It is impossible.
If 'twere impossible, it should be otherwise;5
What can you imagine there of constancy,
Where 'tis so much their nature to love change,
That, when they say but what they are, they excuse
Themselves for what they do?
Bren. She hardly knows him yet, in such an instant.10
Dor. O, you know not how fire flies, when it does catch
Light matter, woman.
Bren. No more of that! She is yet
The most precious thing in all my thoughts.
If it be so,
I am a lost thing in the world, Doran.[Studies15
Bren. Thou wilt in vain persuade me to be other.
Life, which to others is a good, that they
Enjoy, to me will be an evil, I
Shall suffer in.20
Dor. Look on another face: that's present remedy.
Bren. How ill thou dost conclude!
'Cause there are pestilent airs, which kill men suddenly
In health, must there be sovereign, as suddenly
To cure in sickness? 't never was in nature.[Exit25
He enters again hastily
I was a fool to think death only kept
The doors of ill-paid love, when or disdain
Or spite could let me out as well!
Were I as you, it should no more trouble me30
To free myself of love than to spit out
That which made me sick.
Bren. I'll tell her so, that she may laugh at me,
As at a prisoner threat'ning his guard
He will break loose, and so is made the faster.35
She hath charms.———[Studies
Doran can fetch in a rebellious heart.
E'en while it is conspiring liberty.——
O, she hath all
The virtues of her sex, and not the vices;40
Chaste and unsullied as first op'ning lilies
Or untouch'd buds.
Dor. Chaste? why, do you honour me,
Because I throw myself not off a precipice?
'Tis her ruin to be otherwise.
Though we blame those that kill themselves, my lord,45
We praise not him that keeps himself alive,
And deserves nothing.
Bren. And 'tis the least.
She does triumph, when she does but appear:
I have as many rivals as beholders.
Dor. All that increases but our jealousies;50
If you have now such qualms for that you have not,
What will you have for that you shall possess?
Bren. Dull heretic!
Know I have these, because I have not her.
When I have her, I shall have these no more.55
Her fancy now, her virtue then, will govern;
And, as I use to watch with doubtful eye
The wavering needle in the best sundial,
Till it has settled, then the trouble's o'er,
Because I know, when it is fix'd, it's true:60
So here my doubts are all afore me. Sure,
Doran, crown'd conquerors are but the types
Of lovers, which enjoy, and really
Possess what th' other have in dreams! I'll send
A challenge to him.65
Dor. Do, and be thought a madman! To what purpose?
If she love him, she will but hate you more.
Lovers in favour, Brennoralt,
Are gamesters in good fortune; the more you set them,
The more they get.70
Bren. I'll see her, then, this night; by Heaven, I will!
Dor. Where? in the citadel?
Bren. Know what, and why!
Dor. [aside]. He raves. [Aloud] Brennoralt!
Bren. Let me alone!
I conjure thee, by the discretion75
Left betwixt us—that's thine;
For mine's devour'd by injuries of fortune———
Leave me to myself.
Dor. I have done.
Bren. Is there such a passage80
As thou hast told me of into the castle?
Rag. There is, my lord.
Bren. And dar'st thou let me in?
Rag. If you, my lord, will venture.
Bren. There are no sentries near it?
Bren. How to the chamber afterward?
Rag. Her woman.
Bren. What's she?
Rag. A wicket to my lady's secrets,
One that stands up to marriage with me.
Bren. There![Flings him a purse
Upon thy life be secret!
Rag. Else all punishment to ingratitude!90
I am a storm within till I am there.
That that which is so pleasant to behold
Should be such pain within!
Dor. Poor Brennoralt!95
Thou art the martyr of a thousand tyrants:
Love, honour, and ambition reign by turns,
And show their power upon thee.
Bren. Why, let them! I'm still Brennoralt. 'Ev'n kings
Themselves are by their servants rul'd sometimes:100
Let their own slaves govern them at odd hours,
Yet not subject their persons or their powers.'[Exeunt
Enter Iphigene, disguised as before, as in a garden
Iph. What have I got by changing place,
But as a wretch which ventures to the wars,
Seeking the misery with pain abroad,
He found, but wisely thought h' had left at home?
Fortune, thou hast no tyranny beyond5
Would I had never hop'd,
Or had betimes despair'd! let never in
The gentle thief, or kept him but a guest,
Not made him lord of all!10
Tempests of wind thus (as my storms of grief
Carry my tears, which should relieve my heart)
Have hurried to the thankless ocean clouds
And showers, that needed not at all the courtesy,
When the poor plains have languish'd for the want,15
And almost burnt asunder.
I'll have this statue's place, and undertake
At my own charge to keep the water full.[Lies down
Fran. These fond imprespions grow too strong upon me.
They were at first without design or end,20
Like the first elements, that know not what
And why they act, and yet produce strange things———
Poor innocent desires, journeying they know
Not whither; but now they promise to themselves
Strange things, grow insolent, threaten no rest25
Till they be satisfy'd.
What difference was between these lords!
The one made love, as if he by assault
Would take my heart, so forc'd it to defence;
While t'other blew it up with secret mines,30
And left no place for it. Here he is!
Tears steal, too, from his eyes,
As if not daring to be known to pass
Make it good, cunning grief: thou know'st thou couldst35
Not dress thyself in any other looks,
To make thee lovely.
Iph. [spying her]. Francelia!
If, through the ignorance of places, I
Have intruded on your privacies, found out40
Forbidden paths, 'tis fit you pardon, madam;
For 'tis my melancholy, not I, offends.
Fran. So great a melancholy would well become
Mischances, such as time could not repair.
Those of the war are but the petty cures45
Of every coming hour.
Iph. [aside]. Why
Should I not tell her all? since 'tis in her
To save my life? Who knows, but she may be
Gallant so far, as to undo herself50
To make another happy?
The accidents of war contribute least
To my sad thoughts (if any such I have)—
Imprisonment can never be,55
Where the place holds what we must love; and yet———
Fran. My lord?
Iph. In this imprisonment———
Iph. I dare not, madam.
Fran. I see.60
I do disturb you, and enter upon secrets,
Which when I know, I cannot serve you in them.
Iph. O, most of any! You are the cause of all.
Fran. I, my lord?
Iph. You, madam, you alone!
Fran. [aside]. Alas, that 'tis so soon to understand!65
Iph. Must not you marry Almerin?
Fran. They tell me 'tis design'd.
Iph. If he have you, I am for ever lost.
The heavens forbid they should design so ill;70
Or, when they shall, that I should be the cause!
Iph. [aside]. Ha!
Her eyes are strangely kind: she prompts me excellently.
Stars, be propitious: and I am safe!—
A way I not expected.75
Fran. [aside]. His passion labours for vent.
Iph. Is there a hope you will not give yourself
Fran. My lord, this air is common:
The walks within are pleasanter.[Exit
God of desires, be kind, and fill me now
With language, such thou lend'st thy favourites,
When thou wouldst give them easy victories;
And I forgive thee all thy cruelties.[Exit after her
Enter Palatine of Trock, and Menseck, Almerin, Brennoralt, Lords
Mens. Consider, too, that those
Who are necessitated to use violence
Have first been violent by necessity.
Pal. But still you judge not right
Of the prerogative; 'For oft it stands5
With pow'r and law, as with our faith and reason:
It is not all against that is above,'
2nd Lord. You Lithuanians had of all least reason;
For, would the king be unjust to you, he cannot,10
Where there's so little to be had.
Alm. Where there is least, there's liberty, my lord;
And 'tis more injury to pull hairs from
The bald, than from the bushy heads.[They go off talking
Pal. Brennoralt, a word![He pulls Brennoralt15
My lord, the world hath cast its eye upon you,
And mark'd you out one of the foremost men.
Y' have busied fame the earliest of any,
And send her still on errands.
Much of the bravery of your nation20
Has taken up its lodging in you; and gallant men
But copy from you.
Bren. 'Tis goodly language this: what would it mean?
Pal. The Lithuanians wish you well, and wonder
So much desert should be so ill rewarded.25
Pal. While all the gifts the crown is mistress of
Are plac'd upon the empty.
Bren. Still I take you not.
Pal. Then, to be plain, our army would be proud of you;30
Pay the neglected scores of merit double.
All that you hold here of command, and what
Your fortune in this Sigismund has suffer'd,
Repair, and make it fairer than at first.
Than nothing? Lord! trifle below ill language!
How came it in thy heart to tempt my honour?
Trock. My lord?
Bren. Dost think, 'cause I am angry with
The king and state sometimes, I am fallen out
With virtue and myself?40
Draw! draw! or by goodness———
Trock. What means your lordship?
Bren. Draw, I say!
He that would think me a villain, is one; and I
Do wear this toy to purge the world of such.45
Enter King of Poland, Lords, Melidor, Miesta
They've sav'd thee. Wert thou good-natur'd,
Thou wouldst love the king the better during life.
King. If they be just, they call for gracious answers;
Speedy, howe'er, we promise.[They all kiss the King's hand
All. Long live great Sigismund!50
Bren. The Lithuanians, sir,
Are of the wilder sort of creatures, must
Be rid with cavilons and with harsh curbs.
And, since the war can only make them tried,
What can be used but swords? where men have fall'n55
From not respecting royalty, unto
A liberty of offending it, what though
Their numbers possibly equal yours, sir;
And now, forc'd by necessity, like cats
In narrow rooms, they fly up in your face?60
Think you rebellion and loyalty
Are empty names? and that in subjects' hearts
They don't both give and take away the courage?
Shall we believe there is no difference
In good and bad? that there's no punishment65
Or no protection? forbid it, heaven!
If, when great Poland's honour, safety too,
Hangs in dispute, we should not draw our swords,
Why were we ever taught to wear 'em, sir?
Mi. This late commotion in your kingdom, sir,70
Is like a growing wen upon the face,
Which as we cannot look on but with trouble,
So take't away we cannot but with danger.
War there hath foulest face, and I most fear it,
Where the pretence is fair'st. Religion75
And liberty, most specious names, they urge;
Which, like the bills of subtle mountebanks,
Fill'd with great promises of curing all,
Though by the wise pass'd by as common cosenage,
Yet by th' unknowing multitude they're still80
Admir'd and flock'd unto.
King. Is there no way
To disabuse them?
Mel. All is now too late.
'The vulgar in religion are like
Unknown lands; those that first possess them have them.'
Then, sir, consider, justness of cause is nothing:85
When things are risen to the point they are,
'Tis either not examin'd or believed
Among the warlike.
The better cause the Grecians had of yore:
Yet were the gods themselves divided in't;90
And the foul ravisher found as good protection
As the much injur'd husband.
Nor are you, sir, assur'd of all behind you;
For, though your person in your subjects' hearts
Stands highly honour'd and belov'd, yet are95
There certain acts of state, which men call grievances,
Abroad; and, though they bare them in the times
Of peace, yet will they now perchance seek to
Be free, and throw them off. 'For know, dread sir,
The common people are much like the sea,100
That suffers things to fall and sink unto
The bottom in a calm, which, in a storm
Stirr'd and enrag'd, it lifts, and does keep up.'
Then time distempers cures more safely, sir,
Than physic does, or instant letting-blood:105
Religion now is a young mistress there,
For which each man will fight and die at least;
Let it alone a while, and 'twill become
A kind of marry'd wife: people will be
Content to live with it in quietness,110
If that at least may be. My voice is therefore, sir,
Mens. Were, sir, the question simply war or peace,
It were no more than shortly to be ask'd,
Whether we would be well or ill;115
Since war the sickness of the kingdom is,
And peace the health. But here I do conceive
'Twill rather lie, whether we had not better
Endure sharp sickness for a time, to enjoy
A perfect strength, than have it languish on us;120
For peace and war in an incestuous line
Have still begot each other.
Those men that highly now have broke all laws,—
The great one only 'tis 'twixt man and man—
What safety can they promise, though you give it?125
Will they not still suspect, and justly too,
That all those civil bonds new-made should be
Broken again to them? So, being still
In fears and jealousies themselves, you must
Infect the people; 'for in such a case130
The private safety is the public trouble.'
Nor will they ever want pretext; 'since he
That will maintain it with his sword he's injur'd,
May say't at any time.'
Then, sir, as terrible as war appears,135
My vote is for't; nor shall I ever care,
How ugly my physician's face shall be,
So he can do the cure.
Lord. In vent'ring physic, I think, sir, none so much
Considers the doctor's face as his own body.140
To keep on foot the war with all your wants
Is to let blood, and take strong potions
In dangerous sickness.
King. I see, and wonder not to find, my lords,
This difference in opinion: the subject's large;145
Nor can we there too much dispute, where, when
We err, 'tis at a kingdom's charges. Peace
And war are in themselves indifferent;
And time doth stamp them either good or bad:
But here the place is much considerable.150
'War in our own is like to too much heat
Within, it makes the body sick: when in
Another country, 'tis but exercise;
Conveys that heat abroad, and gives it health.'
To that I bend my thoughts, but leave it to155
Our greater council, which we now assemble:
Meantime, exchange of pris'ners only we
Lord. Nothing of truce, sir?
King. No: we'll not take up
Quiet at int'rest: perfect peace or nothing.160
'Cessations for short times in war are like
Small fits of health in desp'rate maladies;
Which, while the instant pain seems to abate,
Flatters into debauch and worse estate.'[Exeunt
Enter Iphigene, as leading to her chamber Francelia, Servants with lights, Morat, and another Soldier
Iph. I have not left myself a fair retreat,
And must be now the blest object of your love,
Or subject of your scorn.
Fran. I fear some treachery,
And that mine eyes have given intelligence.
Unless you knew there would be weak defence,5
You durst not think of taking in a heart,
As soon as you set down before it.
Iph. [in a whisper]. Condemn my love not of such fond ambition,
It aims not at a conquest, but exchange,
Francelia.[In a whisper10
Mor. They're very great in this short time.[Aside
Sol. 'Tis ever so.
Young and handsome are made acquaintances in nature; so
When they meet, they have the less to do. It is
For age or ugliness to make approaches,15
And keep a distance.[Aside
Iph. When I shall see other perfection,
Which at the best will be but other vanity,
Not more I shall not love it.
Fran. 'Tis still one step not to despair, my lord.20
[Exeunt Iphigene, Francelia, and Servants
Mor. Dost think he will fight?
Sol. Troth, it may be not.
Nature, in those fine pieces, does as painters;
Hangs out a pleasant excellence that takes
The eye, which is indeed
But a coarse canvas in the naked truth,25
Or some slight stuff.
Mor. I have a great mind to taste him.
Sol. Fie! a prisoner?
Mor. By this hand, if I thought
He courted my coronel's mistress in earnest!
Re-enter Iphigene, a Waiting-woman coming after her
Wom. [to Iph.] My lord,30
My lord, my lady thinks the jessamine walks
Will be the finer: the freshness of th' morning
Takes off the strength o' th' heat, she says.
Iph. 'Tis well.[Exit
Mor. Mew! do it so?
I suspect vildly. We'll follow him, and see35
If he be so far qualified towards a soldier,
As to drink a crash in's chamber.
Enter Raguelin: he pulls the Waiting-woman back
Rag. What are these keys?
Wom. Hark you, I dare not do it.
Wom. My lady will find———
Rag. Scruples? Are my hopes40
Become your fears? There was no other way
I should be anything in this lewd world;
And now—'sfoot, I know she longs to see him too.
Wom. Does she?
Rag. Do you think he would desire it else?
Wom. Ay, but———45
Rag. Why, let me secure it all.
I'll say I found the keys, or stole them. Come.
Wom. Well, if you ruin all now—here, these enter the
garden from the works; that, the privy walks; and that,
the back stairs. Then you know my chamber?50
Rag. Yes, I know your chamber.[Exeunt
Bren. He comes not.
One wise thought more, and I return. I cannot
In this act separate the foolish from
The bold so far, but still it tastes o' th' rash.
Why, let it taste! it tastes of love too; and5
To all actions 't gives a pretty relish, that———
Rag. My lord?
Bren. O, here!
Rag. 'Sfoot, y'are upon our sentries;
Move on this hand.[Exeunt
Enter again Brennoralt and Raguelin
Bren. Where are we now?
Rag. Entering part of the fort:
Your lordship must be wet a little.[Exeunt10
They enter again
Are there here no guards?
Rag. There needs none: you presently
Must pass a place, where one's an army in
Defence, it is so steep and strait.
Bren. 'Tis well.
Rag. These are the steps of danger. Look to your way,15
Bren. I do not find such difficulty.
Wait me hereabouts.[Exit Raguelin
Enter Francelia, as in a bed, asleep; Brennoralt draws the curtains
So misers look upon their gold, which, while
They joy to see, they fear to lose; the pleasure20
O' the sight scarce equalling the jealousy
Of being dispossess'd by others.
Her face is like the Milky Way i' th' sky,
A meeting of gentle lights without name.
Shall this fresh ornament of the world, this precious
Loveliness pass, with other common things,
Amongst the wastes of time? What pity 'twere!
Fran. [waking] Bless me!
Is it a vision, or Brennoralt?30
Bren. Brennoralt, lady.
Fran. Brennoralt? innocence guard me!
What is't you have done, my lord?
Bren. Alas! I were
In too good estate if I knew what I did.
But why ask you, madam?
Fran. It much amazes me35
To think how you came hither, and what could bring you
T'endanger thus my honour and your own life!
Nothing but saving of my brother could make
Me now preserve you.
Bren. Reproach me not the follies you yourself40
Make me commit.
I am reduc'd to such extremity,
That Love himself (high tyrant as he is),
If he could see, would pity me.
Fran. I understand you not.45
Bren. Would heaven you did, for 'tis a pain to tell you:
I come t' accuse you of injustice, madam!
You first begot my passion, and was
Content (at least you seem'd so) it should live;
Yet since would ne'er contribute unto it,50
Not look upon't; as if you had desired
Its being for no other end, but for
The pleasure of its ruin.
Fran. Why do you labour thus, to make me guilty of
An injury to you—to you, which, when55
It is one, all mankind is alike engag'd,
And must have quarrel to me?
Bren. I have done ill; you chide me justly, madam.
I'll lay't not on you, but on my wretched self;
For I am taught that heavenly bodies60
Are not malicious in their influence,
But by the disposition of the subject.
They tell me you must marry Almerin?
Sure, such excellency ought to be
The recompense of virtue, not the sacrifice65
Of parents' wisdom. Should it not, madam?
Fran. 'Twould injure me were it thought otherwise.
Bren. And shall he have you then, that knew you yesterday?
Is there in martyrdom no juster way,
But he, that holds a finger in the fire70
A little time, should have the crown from them,
That have endur'd the flame with constancy?
Fran. If the discovery will ease your thoughts,
My lord, know Almerin is as the man
I never saw.
Bren. You do not marry then?75
Condemned men thus hear, and thus receive
Reprieves. One question more, and I am gone:
Is there to latitude of eternity
A hope for Brennoralt?
Fran. My lord?
Bren. Have I
A place at all, when you do think of men?80
Fran. My lord, a high one: I must be singular,
Did I not value you. The world does set
Great rates upon you; and you have first deserv'd them.
Bren. Is this all?
Bren. O, be less kind, or kinder:
Give me more pity or more cruelty,85
Francelia! I cannot live with this, nor die.
Fran. I fear, my lord, you must not hope beyond it.
Bren. Not hope?[Views himself
This, sure, is not the body to this soul:
It was mistaken, shuffled in through haste.90
Why else should that have so much love, and this
Want loveliness to make that love receiv'd ?[He studies
I will raise
Honour to a point it never was—do things
Of such a virtuous greatness she shall love me.95
She shall: I will deserve her, though I have her not.
There's something yet in that.
Madam, will't please you, pardon my offence?———
That I must call thus my affection!100
Fran. I will do anything, so you will think
Of me and of yourself, my lord, and how
Your stay endangers both.
Your pardon is more necessary to105
My life, than life to me. But I am gone.
Blessings, such as my wishes for you in
Their extasies could never reach, fall on you!
May ev'rything contribute to preserve
That exc'lence (my destruction), till't meet joys110
In love, great as the torments I have in't![Exit
Bren. Why so, 'tis well. Fortune, I thank thee still.
I dare not call thee villain neither: 'twas
Plotted from the first, that's certain; it looks that way.
Caught in a trap. Here's something yet to trust to.[To his sword5
This was the entry, these the stairs;
But whither afterwards?
He that is sure to perish on the land
May quit the nicety of card and compass;
And safe, to his discretion, put to sea:10
He shall have my hand to't.[Exit
Enter Raguelin and Orilla the waiting-woman
Rag. Look! by this light, 'tis day.
Ori. Not by this; by t'other 'tis indeed.
Rag. Thou art such another piece of temptation. My
lord raves by this time. A hundred to one, the sentinels15
will discover us too: then I do pay for night-watch.
Ori. Fie upon thee! thou art as fearful as a young colt.
Bogglest at everything, fool? As if lovers had consider'd
hours! I'll peep in.[She peeps
Rag. I am as weary of this wench as if I were married20
to her. She hangs upon me like an ape upon a horse.
She's as common, too, as a barber's glass; conscienc'd, too,
like a dy-dapper!
Ori. There's nobody within: my lady sleeps this hour at
Rag. Good, the devil's even with me: not be an honest
man neither. What course now?
Re-enter Brennoralt and a Guard
1st Sol. Nay, sir, we shall order you now.
Fre. What tumult's this?—ha! Brennoralt! 'tis he30
In spite of his disguise: what makes he here?
He's lost for ever, if he be discover'd;
How now, companions, why do you use my friend thus?
Sol. Your friend, my lord? if he be your friend, h'as
Used us as ill. H' has played the devil amongst us:35
Six of our men are surgeons' work this month.
We found him climbing the walls.
2nd Sol. He had no word neither,
Nor any language but a blow.
Fre. You will be doing these wild things, my lord.
Ye are to blame; if y' had desir'd to view the walls
Or trenches, 'twas but speaking: we are not nice.
I would myself have waited on you:
Th' are the new outworks you would see perchance.
Boy, bring me45
Black Tempest round about and the grey Barbary:
A trumpet come along too!
My lord, we'll take the nearer way and privater
Here through the sally-port.
Bren. What a devil is this?
Sure I dream.[Exeunt. Manent Guard
Sol. Now you are so officious!50
2nd Sol. Death! could I guess he was a friend?
Sol. 'Twas ever to be thought: how should he come
2nd Sol. Friend or no friend, he might have left us
Something to pay the surgeon with. Grant me that,
Or I'll beat you to't.[Exeunt55
Enter Fresolin and Brennoralt
Start not: I pay thee back a life I owe thee,
And bless my stars they gave me power to do't;
The debt lay heavy on me.
A horse waits you there, a trumpet too, which you5
May keep, lest he should prate. No ceremony,
Bren. Thou hast astonish'd me:
Thy youth hath triumphed in one single act
O'er all the age can boast; and I will stay
To tell thee so, were they now firing all10
Their cannons on me. Farewell! gallant Fresolin,
And may reward, great as thy virtue, crown thee![Exeunt divers ways
Enter Iphigene and Francelia
Fran. A peace will come, and then you must be gone;
And whether, when you once are got upon the wing,
You will not stoop to what shall rise, before ye
Fly to some lure with more temptation garnish'd,
Is a sad question.5
Iph. Can you have doubts, and I not fears? By this
The readiest and the sweetest oath [kisses her], I swear
I cannot so secure myself of you,
But in my absence I shall be in pain.
I have cast up what it will be to stand10
The governor's anger, and, which is more hard,
The love of Almerin. I hold thee now
But by thy own free grant—a slight security!
Alas! it may fall out, giving thyself,
Not knowing thine own worth or want of mine;15
Thou mayst, like kings deceiv'd, resume the gift
On better knowledge back.
Fran. If I so easily change,
I was not worth your love; and by the loss
Iph. But, when y'are irrecoverably gone,
'Twill be slight comfort to persuade myself
You had a fault, when all that fault must be
But want of love to me; and that again
Find in my much defect so much excuse,25
That it will have no worse name than discretion,
If unconcern'd [you] do cast it up—I must
Have more assurance.
Fran. You have too much already;
And sure, my lord, you wonder, while I blush,
At such a growth in young affections.30
Iph. Why should I wonder, madam?
Love, that from two breasts sucks, must of a child
Quickly become a giant.
Dunces in love stay at the alphabet:
The inspir'd know all before, and do begin35
Almerin return'd has sent to kiss your hands.
I told him you were busy.
Fran. Must I, my lord, be busy?40
I may be civil, though not kind. Tell him
I wait him in the gallery.
Iph. [whispers]. May I not kiss your hand this night?
Fran. The world is full of jealous eyes, my lord;
And, were they all lock'd up, you are a spy,45
Once enter'd in my chamber at strange hours.
Iph. The virtue of Francelia is too safe
To need those little arts of preservation.
Thus to divide ourselves, is to distrust ourselves.
A cherubin despatches not on earth50
Th' affairs of heaven with greater innocence
Than I will visit; 'tis but to take a leave—
Fran. When you are going, my lord.[Exeunt
Enter Almerin, Morat
Alm. Pish! Thou liest, thou liest.55
I know he plays with womankind, not loves it.
Thou art impertinent.
Mor. 'Tis the camp-talk, my lord, though.
Alm. The camp's an ass; let me hear no more on't.[Exeunt talking
Enter Grainevert, Villanor, and Marinel
Gra. And shall we have peace? I am
No sooner sober but the state is so too.
If't be thy will, a truce for a moneth only.
I long to refresh my eyes, by this hand;
They have been so tir'd with looking upon faces5
Of this country.
Vil. And shall the Donazella
To whom we wish so well-a
Look babies again in our eyes-a?
A sprightly girl above fifteen, that melts,
When a man but takes her by the hand; eyes full
And quick; with breath sweet as double violets,
And wholesome as dying leaves of strawberries;
Thick silken eyebrows, high upon the forehead;15
And cheeks mingled with pale streaks of red,
Such as the blushing morning never wore.
Vil. Oh, my chops, my chops!
Gra. With, narrow mouth, small teeth, and lips swelling,
As if she pouted———20
Vil. Hold, hold, hold!
Gra. Hair curling, and cover'd, like buds of marjoram;
Part tied in negligence, part loosely flowing———
Mar. Tyrant, tyrant, tyrant!
Gra. In a pink-colour taffeta petticoat,25
Lac'd smock-sleeves dangling! This vision stol'n
From her own bed, and rustling into one's chamber!
Vil. O good Grainevert, good Grainevert!
Gra. With a wax candle in her hand, looking
As if she had lost her way, at twelve at night.30
Mar. Oh, any hour, any hour!
Gra. Now I think on't, by this hand, I'll marry, and be long-liv'd.
Vil. Long-liv'd! how?
Gra. Oh, he that has a wife eats with an appetite; h'as
a very good stomach to't first. This living at large is very35
destructive. Variety is like rare sauces; provokes too far,
and draws on surfeits more than th' other.
Is this a time to fool in?
Gra. What's the matter?
Dor. Draw out your choice men40
And away to your Coronel immediately.
There's work towards, my boys, there's work.
Gra. Art in earnest?
Dor. By this light.
Gra. There's something in that yet.45
This moiety war,
Neither night nor day:
Pox upon it!
A storm is worth a thousand50
Of your calm;
There's more variety in it.[Exeunt
Enter Almerin and Francelia, as talking earnestly
Alm. Madam, that shows the greatness of my passion.
Fran. The imperfection rather: jealousy's
No better sign of love, my lord, than fevers are
Of life: they show there is a being, though
Impair'd and perishing; and that, affection,5
But sick and in disorder. I like't not.
Alm. So short and sour? the change is visible.
Iph. Dear Almerin, welcome, y' have been absent long.
Alm. Not very long.
Iph. To me it hath appear'd so.10
What says our camp? am I not blamed there?
Alm. They wonder———
Iph. While we smile.
How have you found the king inclining?
The treaty is not broken, nor holds it. Things
Are where they were: 't has a kind of face of peace.15
You, my lord, may, when you please, return.
Iph. I, Almerin?
Alm. Yes, my lord,
I'll give you an escape.
Iph. 'Tis least in my desires.
Iph. Such prisons are beyond all liberty.20
Alm. Is't possible?
Iph. Seems it strange to you?
Not at all. What, you find the ladies kind?
Iph. [smiles]. Civil.
Alm. You make love well too, they say, my lord.
Iph. Pass my time.25
Alm. Address unto Francelia?
Iph. Visit her.
Alm. D'you know she is my mistress. Palatine?
Alm. D'you know she is my mistress?
Iph. I have been told so.
Alm. And do you court her then?30
Iph. [smiles]. Why,
If I saw the enemy first, would you not charge?
Alm. [aside]. He does allow it too, by Heaven!
Laughs at me too. [Aloud] Thou filcher of a heart,
False as thy title to Francelia,35
Or as thy friendship, which with this [draws] I do
Throw by. Draw!
Iph. What do you mean?
Alm. I see
The cunning now of all thy love, and why
Thou cam'st so timely kind, suffering surprise.
Iph. I will not draw. Kill me;
And I shall have no trouble in my death,
Knowing it is your pleasure;
As I shall have no pleasure in my life,
Knowing 'tis your trouble.
Alm. Oh, poor———I look'd for this.45
I knew th' wouldst find 'twas easier to do
A wrong than justify it. But———
Iph. I will not fight. Hear me!
If I love you not more than I love her;
If I do love her more than for your sake,50
Heaven strangely punish me.
Alm. Take heed how thou
Dost play with heaven!
Iph. By all that's just, and fair,
And good; by all that you hold dear, and men
Hold great, I never had lascivious thought,
Or e'er did action that might call in doubt55
My love to Almerin.
Alm. That tongue can charm me into anything.
I do believe't: prithee, be wiser then.
Give me no further cause of jealousy;
Hurt not mine honour more, and I am well.60
Iph. But well? Of all
Our passions, I wonder nature made
The worst, foul jealousy, her favourite.
And, if it be not so, why took she care,
That everything should give the monster nourishment,65
And left us nothing to destroy it with?
Alm. Prithee, no more; thou plead'st so cunningly,
I fear I shall be made the guilty, and need
Iph. If you could read my heart, .
I will be gone to-morrow, if that will satisfy.70
I shall not rest until my innocence
Be made as plain as objects to the sense.
You shall not go, I'll think upon't no more.75
'Distrusts ruin not friendship,
But build it fairer than it was before.'[Exeunt
Enter Brennoralt, Captains, Stratheman, Doran
Bren. No more but ten from every company;
For many hands are thieves,
And rob the glory, while they take their share.
How goes the night?
Str. Half spent, my lord:5
We shall have straight the moon's weaker light.
Bren. 'Tis time, then. Call in the officers.
Friends, if you were men that must be talk'd
Into courage, I had not chosen you.
Danger with its vizard oft before this time10
Y' have look'd upon, and outfac'd it too:
We are to do the trick again—that's all.
Here———[Draws his sword
And yet we will not swear;
For he, that shrinks in such an action,15
Is damn'd without the help of perjury.
Doran, if from the virgin-tow'r thou spiest
A flame, such as the east sends forth about
The time the day should break, go tell the king
I hold the castle for him: bid him come on20
With all his force; and he shall find a victory
So cheap, 'twill lose the value. If I fall,
The world has lost a thing it us'd not well;
And I, a thing I car'd not for—that world.
Str. Lead us on, Coronel; if we do not fight25
Bren. No like! we'll be ourselves' similitude;
And time shall say, when it would tell that men
Did well, they fought like us.[Exeunt
Enter Brennoralt and Stratheman
Bren. What made thee stop?
Str. One in's falling sickness
Had a fit which choked the passage; but all is well.
Softly, we are near the place.[Exeunt
Alarum within, and fight; then enter Almerin in his nightgown
Alm. What noise is here to-night? Something on fire?
Send to the virgin-tower; there is disorder thereabouts.
Sol. All's lost, all's lost!
The enemy's upon the place of arms;
And is by this time master of that and of the tower.
Alm. Thou liest![Strikes him10
Mor. Save yourself, my lord, and haste unto the camp;
Ruin gets in on every side.
Alm. There's something in it, when this fellow flies.
Villains, my arms! I'll see what devil, reigns.[Exeunt
Enter Iphigene and Francelia
Iph. Look, the day breaks!
Fran. You think I'll be so kind
As swear it does not now? Indeed, I will not.
Iph. Will you
Not send me neither your picture, when y'are gone?
That, when my eye is famish'd for a look,5
It may have where to feed,
And to the painted feast invite my heart.
Fran. Here, take this virgin bracelet of my hair,
And if, like other men, thou shalt hereafter
Throw it with negligence10
'Mongst the records of thy weak female conquests;
Laugh at the kind words and mystical contrivement;
If such a time shall come,
Know I am sighing then thy absence, Iphigene,
And weeping o'er the false but pleasing image.15
Alm. Francelia, Francelia,
Rise, rise, and save thyself! the enemy
That does not know thy worth, may else destroy it.[Throws open the door
Ha! mine eyes grow sick:
A plague has through them stol'n into my heart,20
And I grow dizzy! Feet, lead me off again,
Without the knowledge of my body! I
Shall act, I know not what else.[Exit
Fran. How came he in?
Dear Iphigene, we are betray'd!25
Let's raise the castle, lest he should return.
Iph. That were to make all public. Fear not;
I'll satisfy his anger: I can do it.
Fran. Yes, with some quarrel!
And bring my honour and my love in danger.30
Look, he returns; and wrecks of fury,
Like hurried clouds over the face of heaven
Before a tempest, in his looks appear.
Alm. If they would question what our rage doth act,
And make it sin, they would not thus provoke men.35
I am too tame.
For, if they live, I shall be pointed at.
Here I denounce a war to all the world;
And thus begin it.[Runs at Iphigene
Iph. What hast thou done?[She falls40
Fran. Ah me, help, help![Almerin wounds her
Alm. 'Tis too late.
Iph. [aside]. My fond deceits involve the innocent.
Rather than she shall suffer, I will discover45
Alm. Ha! what
Will he discover?
Iph. That which shall make thee curse
The blindness of thy rage—I am a woman!
Alm. Ha, ha, ha! brave and bold!50
Because thy perjury deceived me once,
And sav'd thy life, thou think'st to escape again.
Impostor, thus thou shalt———[Runs at her
Iph. Oh, hold! I have enough.
Had I hope of life, thou shouldst not have this secret.55
Fran. What will it be now?
Iph. My father, having long desir'd
A son to heir his great possessions,
And in six births successively deceived,
Made a rash vow—O, how rash vows are punished!——60
That, if the burthen then my mother went with
Prov'd not a male, he ne'er would know her more.
Then was unhappy Iphigene brought forth,
And by the women's kindness nam'd a boy,
And since so bred—a cruel pity, as65
It hath fallen out. If now thou find'st that, which
Thou thought'st a friendship in me, love, forget it.
It was my joy—and—death.[She faints
Alm. For curiosity
I'll save thee, if I can, and know the end,70
If 't be but loss of blood——
By all that's good, a woman! Iphigene!
Iph. I thank thee, for I was fall'n asleep before
I had despatch'd. Sweetest of all thy sex,75
Francelia, forgive me now: my love
Unto this man, and fear to lose him, taught me
A fatal cunning, made me court you and
My own destruction.
Fran. I am amaz'd.
Alm. And can it be, O mockery of heaven?80
To let me see what my soul often wish'd,
And make't my punishment—a punishment
That, were I old in sins, were yet too great!
Iph. Would you have lov'd me, then? Pray, say you would:
For I, like testy sick men at their death,85
Would know no news but health from the physician.
Alm. Canst thou doubt that,
That hast so often seen me extasi'd
When thou wert dress'd like woman,
Unwilling ever to believe thee man?90
Iph. I have enough.
What thing shall I appear unto the world?
Here might my ignorance find some excuse,
I was distracted. None, but one enrag'd
With anger to a savageness, would e'er
Have drawn a sword upon such gentle sweetness.
Be kind, and kill me—kill me, one of you!
Kill me, if't be but to preserve my wits.100
Dear Iphigene, take thy revenge, it will
Not misbecome thy sex at all; for 'tis
An act of pity, not of cruelty,
Thus to despatch a miserable man.
Fran. And thou wouldst be more miserable yet,105
While, like a bird made prisoner by itself,
Thou beat'st and beat'st thyself 'gainst everything,
And dost pass by that which should let thee out.
Alm. Is it my fault,
Or heaven's? Fortune, when she would play upon me,110
Like ill musicians, wound me up so high,
That I must crack sooner than move in tune.
Fran. Still you rave;
While we for want of present help may perish.
A surgeon! I'll go find one instantly.
The enemy too!—I had forgot!
O, what fatality govern'd this night![Exit
Fran. How like an unthrift's case will mine be now?
For all the wealth he loses shifts but's place;120
And still the world enjoys it: and so will 't you,
Sweet Iphigene, though I possess you not.
Iph. What of nature's this! Have you
So perfectly forgiv'n already, as to
Consider me a loss? I doubt which sex125
I shall be happier in. Climates of friendship
Are not less pleasant, 'cause they are less scorching,
Than those of love; and under them we'll live:
Such precious links of that we'll tie our souls
Together with, that the chains of the other130
Shall be gross fetters to it.
Fran. But I fear
I cannot stay the making. O, would you
Had never undeceiv'd me! for I had died
With pleasure, believing I had been your martyr.
Iph. She looks pale! Francelia!135
Fran. I cannot stay:
A hasty summons hurries me away,
Iph. She's gone,
She's gone! Life, like a dial's hand, hath stol'n140
From the fair figure, ere it was perceiv'd.
[A noise within. Enter Soldiers. She thinks them Almerin
What will become of me? Too late, too late
Y'are come: you may persuade wild birds, that wing
The air, into a cage, as soon as call
Her wand'ring spirits back.145
Those are strange faces: there's a horror in them;
And, if I stay, I shall be taken for
The murtherer. O, in what straits they move,
That wander 'twixt death, fears, and hopes of love![Exit150
Enter Brennoralt, Grainevert, Soldiers
Bren. Forbear, upon your lives,
The place! There dwells Divinity within it.
All else the castle holds is lawful prize,
Your valour's wages: this I claim as mine.
Guard you the door.5
Grd. Coronel, shall you use all the women yourself?
Bren. Away! 'tis unseasonable.[They retire: he draws the curtain
Awake, fair saint, and bless thy poor idolater.
Ha! pale? And cold? And dead ?
The sweetest guest fled—murdered, by heaven!10
The purple streams not dry yet!
Some villain has broke in before me,
Robb'd all my hopes; but I will find him out,
And kick his soul to hell. I'll do't.
[Dragging out Iphigene] Speak!
Iph. What should I say?15
Bren. Speak, or by all———
Iph. Alas! I do confess
Myself th' unfortunate cause.
Bren. O, d'you so? Hadst thou been cause of all the plagues
That vex mankind, thou'dst been an innocent
To what thou art: thou shalt not think repentance.[He kills her20
Iph. O, thou wert too sudden, and———[She dies
Bren. Was I so?
The lustful youth would sure have spoil'd her honour;
Which finding highly guarded, rage, and fear
To be reveal'd, counsell'd this villainy.25
Is there no more of them?[Exit
Alm. Not enter?
Yes, dog, through thee! Ha! a corpse laid out,
Instead of Iphigene! Francelia dead too!
Where shall I begin to curse?30
Bren. Here, if he were thy friend!
A gallant sword could ne'er have come
In better time.
Bren. I have a good one for thee,
If that will serve the turn.35
Alm. I long to try it. That sight doth make me desperate;
Sick of myself and the world.
Bren. Didst value him?
A greater villain did I never kill.
Alm. Art sure of it?
Bren. Maybe, I do not wake.
Alm. Th'ast taken then
A guilt off from me, would have weigh'd down my sword,
Weak'ned me to low resistance:45
I should have made no sports, hadst thou conceal'd it.
Know, Brennoralt, thy sword is stain'd in excellence,
Great as the world could boast.
Bren. Ha, ha!
How thou'rt abus'd! Look there, there lies the excellence50
Thou speak'st of! Murd'red: by him too; he did
Confess he was the cause.
Alm. O innocence
Ill understood, and much worse us'd! She was,
Alas, by accident! but I—I was
The cause in deed.
Bren. I will believe thee too,
And kill thee; destroy all causes, till I make55
A stop in nature;
For to what purpose should she work again?
Alm. Bravely then!
The title of a kingdom is a trifle
To our quarrel, sir. Know by sad mistake60
I kill'd thy mistress, Brennoralt; and thou
Alm. Yes, that Iphigene,
Though shown as man unto the world, was woman,65
Bren. I understand no riddles; guard thee.[Fight and pause
Alm. O, could they now look down and see,
How we two strive which first should give revenge,
They would forgive us something of the crime.70
Hold! prithee, give me leave
To satisfy a curiosity—
I never kissed my Iphigene as woman.[Kisses Iphigene and rises
Bren. Thou motion'st well, nor have I taken leave.[Kisses Francelia
It keeps a sweetness yet,75
As stils from roses when the flowers are gone.[Rises
Alm. Even so have two faint pilgrims, scorch'd with heat,
Unto some neighbour fountain stepp'd aside,
Kneel'd first, then laid their warm lips to the nymph,
And from her coldness took fresh life again,80
As we do now.
Bren. Let's on our journey, if thou art refresh'd.
Alm. Come! and, if there be a place reserv'd
For height'ned spirits better than other,
May that which wearies first of ours have it![Fight a good while; Almerin falls85
Bren. If I grow weary, laugh at me, that's all.
Alm. Brave souls above, which will
Be, sure, inquisitive for news from earth,
Shall get no other but that thou art brave.
Enter King, Stratheman, Lords, Menseck
Str. To preserve some ladies, as we guess'd!90
King. Still gallant, Brennoralt? thy sword not sheath'd yet?
Bren. Revenging, sir,
The foulest murder ever blasted ears,
Committed here by Almerin and Iphigene!95
Alm. [reviving]. False, false! the first-created purity
Was not more innocent than Iphigene.
Bren. Lives he again?
Alm. Stay, thou much-wearied guest,
Till I have thrown a truth amongst them—
We shall look black else to posterity.100
King. What says he?
Lord. Something concerning this he labours to
Alm. Know, it was I that kill'd Francelia,
Mens. O barbarous return of my civilities.105
Was it thy hand?
Alm. Hear and forgive me, Menseck. Ent'ring this morning
Hastily, with resolution to preserve
The fair Francelia, I found a thief
Stealing the treasure (as I thought) belong'd to me.110
Wild in my mind, as ruin'd in my honour,
In much mistaken rage I wounded both.
Then (O, too late!)
I found my error, found Iphigene a woman,
Acting stol'n love, to make her own love safe,115
And all my jealousies impossible.
Whilst I ran out to bring them cure,
Francelia dies, and Iphigene found here—
I can no more.[Dies
King. Most strange and intricate!
Iphigene a woman?120
Mel. With this story I am guiltily acquainted,
The first concealments, since her love, and all
The ways to it, I have been trusted with;
But, sir, my grief, join'd with the instant business,
Begs a deferment.125
King. I am amaz'd, till I do hear it out.
But, i' th' meantime, lest in these mists
Merit should lose itself, these forfeitures
Of Trock and Menseck, Brennoralt, are thine.
Bren. A princely gift! But, sir, it comes too late.130
Like sunbeams on the blasted blossoms, do
Your favours fall: you should have given me this,
When't might have rais'd me in men's thoughts, and made
Me equal to Francelia's love. I have
No end, since she is not.135
Back to my private life I will return.
'Cattle, though weary, can trudge homewards after.'
King. This melancholy time must cure. Come, take
The bodies up, and lead the prisoners on.
Triumph and funerals must walk together;140
Cypress and laurel twin'd make up one chaplet.
For we have got
The day; but bought it at so dear a rate,
The victory itself's unfortunate.[Exeunt