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Lady Rand. Now I shun him not. . .
This day I braved him in behalf of Norval:
Perhaps too far: at least my nicer fears
For Douglas thus interpret.
Glen. Noble dame!
The hov'ring Dane at last his men hath landed:
No band of pirates; but a mighty host,
That come to settle where their valour conquers;
To win a country, or to lose themselves.
Lady Rand. But whence comes this intelligence,
Glen. A nimble courier sent from yonder camp,
To hasten up the chieftains of the north,
Inform'd me, as he past, that the fierce Dane
Had on the eastern coast of Lothian landed, . .. .
Near to that place where the sea-rock immense,
Amazing Bass, looks o'er a fertile land.
Lady Rand. Then must this western army
march to join The warlike troops that guard Edina's towers.
Glen. Beyond all question. If impairing time Has not effaced the image of a place ... Once perfect in my breast, there is a wild ,:
Which lies to westward of that mighty rock,
And seems by nature formed for the camp
Of water-wafted armies, whose chief strength
Lies in firm foot, unflank'd with warlike horse:
If martial skill directs the Danish lords,
There inaccessible their army lies
To our swift-scow'ring horse; the bloody field
Must man to man, and foot to foot, be fought.
Lady Rand. How many mothers shall bewail [... /
How many widows weep their husbands slain!
Ye dames of Denmark! even for you I feel.
Who, sadly sitting on the sea-beat shore, •
Long look for lords that never shall return.
Glen. Oft has the unconquer'd Caledonian sword
Widow'd the north. The children of the slain
Come, as I hope, to meet their fathers' fate.
The monster war, with her infernal brood,
Loud yelling fury, and life-ending pain,
Are objects suited to Glenalvon's soul.
Scorn is more grievous than the pains of death:
Reproach more piercing than the pointed sword.
Lady Hand. I scorn thee not, but when I ought
to scorn; Nor e'er reproach, but when insulted virtue
Against audacious vice asserts herself.
I own thy worth, Glenalvon; none more apt
Than I to praise thine eminence in arms,
And be the echo of thy martial fame.
No longer vainly feed a guilty passion;
Go and pursue a lawful mistress, Glory:
Upon the Danish crests redeem thy fault,
And let thy valour be the shield of Randolph.
Glen. One instant stay, and hear an alter'd man.
When beauty pleads for virtue, vice abash'd
Flies its own colours, and goes o'er to virtue.
I am your convert; time will shew how truly:
Yet one immediate proof I mean to give.
That youth, for whom your ardent zeal to-day
Somewhat too haughtily defied your slave,
Amidst the shock of armies I'll defend,
And turn death from him with a guardian arm.
Sedate by use, my bosom maddens not
At the tumultuous uproar of the field.
Lady Rand. Act thus, Glenalvon, and I am
But that's thy least reward. Believe me, sir,
The truly generous is the truly wise;
And he, who loves not others, lives unblest.
[Exit Lady Randolph.
Glen. [Solus.] Amen! and virtue is its own
I think that I have hit the very tone
In which she loves to speak. Honey'd assent,
How pleasant art thou to the taste of man,
And woman also! flattery direct
Rarely disgusts. They little know mankind
Who doubt its operation: 'tis my key,
And opes the wicket of the human heart.
How far I have succeeded now, I know not:
Yet I incline to think her stormy virtue
Is lull'd awhile. Tis her alone I fear:"
Whilst she and Randolph live, and live in faith
And amity, uncertain is my tenure.
Fate o'er my head suspends disgrace and death,
By that weak hair, a peevish female's will.
I am not idle; but the ebbs and flows
Of fortune's tide cannot be calculated.
That slave of Norval's I have found most apt:
I shew'd him gold, and he has pawn'd his soul
To say and swear whatever I suggest.
Norval, I'm told, has that alluring look,
'Twixt man and woman, which I have observed
To charm the nicer and fantastic dames,
Who are, like Lady Randolph, full of virtue.
In raising Randolph's jealousy, I may
But point him to the truth. He seldom errs,
Who thinks the worst he can of womankind. •
•:..;' -v . - :. /. [Exit.