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His grateful mind still glows with pure affection;
And all his thoughts are loyalty and you.
Qu. Eliz. I grant you Rutland, all you say, and
think

The earl possess’d of many splendid virtues.

What pity ’tis, he should afford his foes

Such frequent, sad, occasions to undo him!

Rut. What human heart can, unafflicted, bear

Such manly merit in distress, beset

By cruel foes, and faction's savage cry ?

My good, my gracious mistress, stretch, betimes, Your saving arm, and snatch him from destruction, From deadly malice, treachery, and Cecil.

Oh, let him live, to clear his conduct up !

My gracious queen, he'll nobly earn your bounty,
And with his dearest blood deserve your mercy.

Qu. Eliz. Her words betray a warm, unusual, fer-
vour;
Mere friendship never could inspire this transport.
[Asid¢.

I never doubted but the earl was brave;

His life and valiant actions all declare it:

I think him honest too, but rash and headstrong.

I gladly would preserve him from his foes,

And therefore am resolv’d once more to see him.

Rut. Oh, ’tis a godlike thought, and Heav’n itself

Inspires it. Sure some angel moves your heart,
Your royal heart, to pity and forgiveness.

This gracious deed shall shine in future story,

And deck your annals with the brightest virtue;

' Posterity shall praise the princely act,

And ages yet to come record your goodness. Qu. Eliz. I'll hear no more—Must I then learn from you To know my province, and be taught to move, As each designing mind directs ?—-Leave me. But. Her frowns are dreadful, and her eye looks .t0rr0t'.

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Bu-r. The Earl of Essex waits your royal will. Qu. Eliz. Let him approach—And now once more support Thy dignity, my soul; not yield thy greatness To strong usurping passion—But he comes.

Enter Essex and SOUTHAMPTON.

Essezr. Permitted thus to bend, with prostrate heart,

[Kneels. Before your sacred majesty; I come,

With every grateful sense of royal favour
Deeply engrav’d within my conscious soul.
Qu. Eliz. I sent my orders for your staff of oflice.
Essen. Madam, my envy'd dignities and honours,
I first from your own royal hand receiv’(l;
And therefore justly held it far beneath me
To yield my trophies, and exalted power,

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To hands unworthy. No, my gi‘3.CiouS queen,

I meant to_ lay them at your royal feet;

Where life itselfa willing victim falls,

If you command. - ' \ Qu. Eliz. High swelling words, my lord, but ill

supply

The place of deeds, and duty's just demand.

In danger's onset, and the day of trial,

Conviction still on acting worth attends;

Whilst mere professions are by doubts encumber'd. Essex. My deeds have oft declai-'d in danger': front

How far my duty and my velour lead me.

Allegiance still my thirst of glory fir'd,

Andall my bravely gather'd, envy'd, laurcls

Were purchas’d- only to adorn my queen.

Qu. Eliz. Your guilty scorn of my intrustedpower, When with my mortal foes you tamely dally'd, By hardy rebels brav’d, you poorly sought A servile pause, and begg’d a shameful truce. Should Essex thus, so meanly compromise,

And lose the harvest of a plenteous glory,

In idle treaties, and suspicious parly?

Essex. 0, deadly stroke! My life's the destin'd mark.

The poison'd shaft has drank my spirits deep.

ls’t come to this? Conspire with rebels! Ha !
I've serv’d you, madam, with the utmost peril,
And ever glory'd in th’ illustrious danger;

Where famine fac'd me with her meagre mien,
And pestilence and death brought up her train.
I've fought your battles, in despite of nature,
Where seasons sicken'd, and the clime was fate.
My power to parly, or to fight, I had-

From you; the time and circumstance did call
Aloud for mutual treaty and condition;

For that I stand aguarded felon here.—A traitor,
Hcmm’d in by villains, and by slaves surrounded.

Qu. Eliz. Shall added insolence, with crest audacious,

Her front uplift against the face of power?
Think not that injur'd majesty will bear

Such arrogance uncheck’d, or unchastis’d.

No public trust becomes the man, who treads,
With scornful steps, in honour's sacred path,
And stands at bold defiance with his duty.

Essex. Away with dignities and hated trust, .
With flattering honours, and deceitful power!
Invert th’ eternal rules of right and justice;

Let villains thrive, and outcast virtue perish;

Let slaves be rais’d-, and cowards have command.
Take, take your gaudy trifies back, those baits
Of vice, and virtue's bane.—’"l‘is clear, my queen,

My royal mistress, casts me off; nay,joins
With Cecil to destroy my life and fame.
Qu. Eliz. Presuming wretch ! Audacious traitor !
Essex. Traitor!
Qu. Eliz. Hence from my sight, ungrateful slave,
and learn
At distance to revere your queen.
Essex. Yes; let _
Me fly beyond the limits of the world,
And nature's verge, from proud oppression far,
From malice, tyranny, from courts, from you.
Qu. Eliz. Traitor! villain! [Strikes him.
Essex. Confusion! what, a blow!
Restrain, good Heaven ! down, down, thou rebel pas-
sron,
And, judgment, take the reins. Madam, ’tis well—-
Your soldier falls degraded ;
His glory's tarnish’d, and his fame undone. \
O, bounteous recompence from _royal hands!
But you, ye implements, beware, beware,
What honour wrong'd, and honest wrath can act.
Qu. Eliz. What would th’ imperious traitor do?
My life

’ Beyond thy wretched purpose stands secure.

Go, learn at leisure what your deeds deserve,
And tremble at the vengeance you provoke.
[Exeunt all but |Essr.x and Sou1uAM1>'roN'.
Essex. Disgrac’d and struck! Damnation ! Death
were gloiious ! -
Revenge! revenge !
South. Alas, my friend! what would
Thy rage attempt? Consider W('ll the great
Advantage now your rash, ungovern'd temper -
Affords your foes. The queen, incens’d, will let
Their fury loose-.—I dread thedire event!
Essex. Has honest pride no just resentment left ?
Nor injur'd honour, feeling?—Not revenge!
High Heaven shall bear, and earth regret, my wrongs.

Hot indignation burns within my soul.

I'll do some dreadful thing !—-I know not what;
Some deeds, as horrid as the shame I feel,

Shall startle nature, and alarm the world.

Then hence, like lightning, let me furious fly,

To hurl destruction at my toes on high;

Pull down oppression from its tyrant seat,

Redeem my glory, or embrace my fate. [E.2'eu.nt‘.

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Qu. Eliz. Not taken yet? Not. No, madam: for the Earl Of Essex, leagu'd with desperate friends, made strong And obstinateresistancc; till, at length, \ 0'erpower'd by numbers, and increasing force, He fled for shelter to a small retreat, A summer house, upon the Thames; resolv’d To perish, rather than submit to power. Qu. Eliz. Oh, where shall majesty bestow its favours, Since Essex has a traitor prov’d to me, Whose arm hath rais’d him up to power and greatness ; Whose heart has shar'd in all his splendid triumphs,

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