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And see if you discover in my looks Oh, my dead lord! Oh, Priam's royal house!
And what does your unsettled heart resolve ?
[Exit. Oh! may he rise in pily from his tomb, Ceph. I told you, madam, that, in spite of And fix his' wretched son's uncertain doom. Greece,
[Exeunt. You would o'errule the malice of your fortune.
A CT IV.
Enter Hermione and CLEONE.
Cle. This unexpected silence, this reserve, To be reluctant still would be a crime. This outward calm, this settled frame of mind, le rould himself persuade you to comply
After such wrongs and insults, much surprise me! Andro. How! wouldst thou give me Pyr- You, who before could not command your rage, rhus for a husband ?
his Ceph. Think you 'twill please the ghost of How can you bear unmov'd, that he should your dead husband,
wed her, That you should sacrifice his son? Consider, And seat her on a throne which
should all? Pyrrhus once more invites you to a throne; I fear this dreadful stillness in your soul! Turns all bis power against the foes of Troy, Twere better, madamRemembers not Achilles was his father, Her. Have you callid Orestes ? Retracts bis conquests, and forgets his hatred. Cle. Madam, I have; his love is too impatient Andro
. But how can I forget it? how can I Not to obey, with speed the welcome summons. Forget my Hector, treated with dishonour,
His love-sick heart o'erlooks his unkind usage: Deprind of funeral rites, and vilely dragg'd, His ardour's still the same.—Madam, he's here. A bloody corpse, about the walls of Troy? Can I forget the good old king, his father,
Enter Orestes. Slain in my presence at the altar slain; Ores. Ah, madam, is it true? does then Orestes Which vainly for protection he embrac'd ? At length attend you by your own commands ? Hast thou forgot that dreadful night, Cephisa, What can I do? When a whole people fell? Methinks I see Her. Orestes, do you love me? Pyrrhus, enrag'd and breathing vengeance, enter
Ores. What means that question, princess? Amidst the glare of burning palaces :
Do I love you? I see him hew his passage through my brothers, My oaths, my perjuries, my hopes, my fears, And, bath'd in blood, lay all my kindred waste. My farewell, my return--all speak my love. Tbiak, in this scene of horror, what I suffer'd! Her. Avenge my wrongs, and I'll believe This is the courtship I receiv'd from Pyrrhus;
them all. And this the husband thou wouldst give me! No, Ores. It shall be done. My soul bas caught We both will perish first! I'll ne'er consent.
th' alarm. Ceph. Since you resolve Astyanax shall die, We'll spirit up the Greeks; I'll lead them on: Haste to the temple, bid your son farewell.— Your cause shall animate our fleets and armies. Why do you tremble, madam?
Let us return; let us not lose a moment, Andro. O Cephisa !
the fate of this devoted land: Thou hast awaken'd all the mother in me.
Let us depart. How can I bid farewell to the dear child, Her. No, prince, let us stay here! The piedge, the image of my much-lov'd lord! I will have vengeance here; I will not carry But
, oh! while I deliberate, he dies. This load of infamy to Greece, not trust No, no, thou must not die, while I can save thee: The chance of war to vindicate my wrongs.
me find out Pyrrhus-Ob, Cephisa! Erc I depart, I'll make Epirus mourn. Do you go find him.
If you avenge me, let it be this instant;
Oh, fly! be gone! give me not time to think. Andro. Well then, assure him
Talk not of laws-he tramples on all laws. Ceph. Madam, of your love?
Let me not hear him justified-away! Andro. Alas, thou know'st that is not in my Ores. You cannot think I'll justify my rival. power.
Madam, your love has made him criminal.
You shall have vengeance; I'll have vengeance Charge bim to say, Hermione's resentments, too:
Not those of Greece, have sentenc'd him to death. But let our hatred be profess'd and open : Hlaste, my Cleone! My revenge is lost, Let us alarm all Greece, denounce a war; If Pyrrhus knows not that he dies by me! Let us attack him in his strength, and hunt Cie. I shall obey your orders.—But I see him down
The king approach. Who could expect bim By conquest. Should I turn base assassin,
here? 'I would sully all the kings I represent. Her. O fly, Cleone, fly! and bid Orestes
Her.llare not been dishonour'd, set at nought, Not to proceed a step before I see him. Espos'd to public scorn?--And will
[Erit Cleone, The tyrant, who dares use me thus, to live?
Enter PYRRHUS. Know, prince, I hate him more than once I lov'd bim.
Pyr. Madam, I ought to shun an injur'd The gods alone can tell how once I lov'd him.
princess. Yes, the false, perjur'd man, I once did love him; Your distant looks reproach me; and I come And, spite of all bis crimes and broken vows, Not to defend, but to arow my guilt. If he should live, I may relapse—who knows Pyrrhus will ne'er approve his own injustice
, But I to-morrow may forgive his wrongs ? Nor form excuses while his heart condemns bim. Ores. First let me tear him piecemeal. He Discharge your anger on this perjur'd man! shall die.
For I abhor my, crime, and should be pleas' But, madam, give me leisure to contrive To hear you speak your wrongs aloud: no terms The place, the time, the manner of his death: No bitterness of wrath, nor keen reproach, Yet I'm a stranger in the court of Pyrrhus; Will equal half the upbraidings of my heart Scarce have I set my foot within Epirus, Her. I find, sir, you can be sincere: you score When you enjoin me to destroy the prince. To act your crimes with fear, like other men It shall be done this very night.
A hero 'should be bold, above all laws; Her. But now,
Be bravely false, and laugh at solemn lies. This very hour, he weds Andromache; To be persidious shows a daring mind! The temple sbines with pomp, the golden throne And you have nobly triumph'd o'er a maid! Is now prepar'd, the joyful rites begin; To court me—to reject me—to returnMy shame is public-Oh, be speedy, prince! Then to forsake me for a Phrygian slaveMy wrath's impatient-Pyrrhus lives too long ! To lay proud Troy in asbes; then to raise Inient on love, and beedless of his
person, The son of Hector, and renounce the Greek He covers with his guards the Trojan boy. Are actions worthy the great soul of Pyrrhu Now is the time; assemble all your Greeks ; Pyr. Madam, go on! Give your resentme Mine shall assist them; Jet their fury loose:
birth, Already they regard him as a foe.
And pour forth all your indignation on me Be gone, Orestes! kill the faithless tyrant; Her. 'Twould please your queen, should My love shall recompense the glorious deed.
upbraid your falsehood; Ores. Consider, madam
you persidious, trailor, all the names Her. You but mock my rage!
That injur'd virgins lavish on your sex; I was contriving how to make you happy. I sbould o'erflow with tears, and die with gri Think you to merit by your
And furnish out a tale to sooth her pride; And not attest your love by one brave action? But, sir, I would not overcharge her joys. Go, with your boasted constancy! and leave If you would charm Andromache, recount Hermione to execute her own revenge. Your bloody battles, your exploits, yo I blush to think how my too easy faith
slaughters, Has twice been baffled in one shameful hour! Your great achievements in' her father's pala Ores. Hear me but speak! – You know I'll She needs must love the man,' who fought die to serve you !
bravely, Her. I'll go myself; I'll stab him at the altar; And in her sight slew half her royal kindre Then drive the poniard, reeking with his blood, Pyr. With borror I look back on my P Through my own heart. In death we shall unite.
deeds! Better to die with him, than live with you! I punish'd Helen's wrongs too far; I shed Ores. That were to make him blest
, and Too much of blood : but, madam, Hele me more wretched.
daughter Madam, be dies by me. Have you a foe, Should not object those ills the mother cau And shall I let him live ? My rival too! However, I'm pleas'd to find you hate me Ere yon meridian sun declines, he dies; I was loo forward to accuse myself; And you shall say that I deserve your love. The man who ne'er was lor'd, can ne'er be fa Her. Go, prince; strike home! and leave the Obedience to a father brought you bither: rest to me.
And I stood bound by promise to receive Let all your ships stand ready for our flight. But oùr desires were different ways incli
[Exit Oresies. And you, I own, were not oblig'd to love Cle. Madam, you'll perish in this bold altempt. Her.Have I not lov'd you then! perfidious m Her. Give me my vengeance, I'm content For you I slighted all the Grecian prince to perish.
Forsook my faiher's house; conreald my wro I was to blame to trust it with another: When most provok'd; would not return In my own hands it had been more secure.
Sparta, Orestes bates not Pyrrhus as I hate him. In hopes that time might fix your wavering h Oh, would Orestes, when he gives the blow, I lov'd you when inconiant, and even ne Tell him he dies my victim!-Haste, Cleone, Inhuman king! that you pronounce my d
Hy heart still doubts ifI should love or hate you—And call him to this hated light again,
But, oh, I fear there's something dreadful in it! Go, then, to the lov'd Phrygian; hence! be gone! Must then Astyanax be doom'd to die, And bear to her those vows that once were mine: And you to linger out a life in bondage? Go, in defiance to the avenging gods!
Andro. Know then the secret purpose of Be gone! the priest expects you at the altar; But, lyrant, have a care I come not thither. [Exit
. Andromache will not be false to Pyrrhus,
Nor violate her sacred love to flecior.
This hour I'll meet the king; the holy priest Phuse. Sir, did you mind her threats ? your Shall join us, and confirm our mutual vows. life's in danger:
This will secure a father to my child: There is no trifling with a woman's rage. Tbat done, I have no further use for life: The Greeks that swarm about the court, all This pointed dagger, this determin'd hand,
Shall save my virtue, and conclude my woes. Will treat you as their country's enemy,
Cephisa, thou And join in her revenge: besides, Orestes Wilt lend a hand to close thy mistress' eyes. Sull loves her to distraction. Sir, I beg - Ceph. Oh, never think that I will stay behind Pyr. How, Phoenix, should I fear a wo
you! man's threats?,
Andro. No, my Cephisa, I must have thee live. A nobler passion takes up all my thoughts: I must commit into thy faithful hands I must prepare to meet Åndromache. All that is dear and precious to my soul. Do tbou place all my guards about her son: Live, and supply my absence to my child; If be be safe, Pyrrhus is free from fear. [Exit. All that remains of Troy; a future progeny
Phoe. Oh, Pyrrhus!oh, what pity 'tis, the gods, Of heroes, and a distant line of kings, Wbo filrd thy soul with every kingly virtue, In him, is all intrusted to thy care. Form'd thee for empire and consummate Tell him my soul repos'd itself on him, greatness,
When I resign'd my son to his protection. Should leave thee so expos'd to wild desires, Ceph. Oh, for a spirit to support my grief! That burry tbee beyond the bounds of reason! Is there aught more, before you go for ever?
[Flourish. Andro. Oh, my Cephisa! my swoln heart But see, the queen, Maguibcent in royal pride, appears.
I have a thousand farewells to my sonI must obey, and guard her son from danger. But tears break in! Grief interrupts my speech!
[Erit. My soul o'erflows in fondness! Let him know Enter ANDROMACHE and Cephisa.
I died to save him-and would die again.
Season his mind with carly hints of glory; Ceph. Madam, once more you look and Make him acquainted with his ancestors ; move a queen.
Trace out their shining story in his thoughts; Your sorrows are dispers'd, your charms revive, Dwell on the exploits of his immortal father; Lad esery faded beauty blooms anew. And sometimes let him hear his mother's name. Andro. Yet all is not as I could wish, Cephisa. He must be taught to stifle his resentments, Ceph. You see the king is watchful o'er And sacrifice his vengeance to his safety. your son;
Should he prove headstrong, rash, or unadvis’d, Decks bim with princely robes, with guards He then will frustrate all his mother's virtue, surrounds him.
Provoke his fate, and I shall die in vain. Lutyanar begins to reign already.
Ceph. Alas, I sear I never shall outlive you! Andro. Pyrrbus is nobly minded; and I fain Andro. No more; thy tears, Cephisa, will Would live to thank him for Astyanax:
betray me; Tis a sain thought. llowever, since my child Assume a cheerful look. But still rememberL's such a friend, I ought not to repinc.
[Flourish within. Cepk. These dark unfoldings of your soul Ilark how the trumpet, with its sprightly notes, perplex me.
Proclaims th'appointed hour, and calls us hence: pre beaven's sake, madam, let me know your Ilector, I come once more a queen, to join thee!
Thus the gay victim, with fresh garlands crown'd, rou distrust my faith
Pleas'd with the sacred fife's enlivening sound, indro. That were to wrong thee. Through gazing crowds,in solemn state proceeds, Pje, mr Cephisa! This gay, borrow'd air, And dress'd in fatal pomp magnificently bleeds. is blare of jewels, and this bridal dress,
Exeunt. 417 bat mock trappings, to conceal my woe:
ACT v. Lean still mourns; I still am Hector's widow.
SCENE I. Ceph. Will you then break the promise giv'n to Pyrrhus,
Enter HERMIONE. up bis rage again, and blast your hopes? Her. What have I done? Where am I? indro. I thought, Cephisa, thou hadst known
Where is Pyrrhus? thy mistress.
Ye gods! what mean these horrors? I'm undone list thou believe I would be false to lector? My soul is on the rack! I cannot bear it
off from such a husband! Break bis rest, Why do I wander like some guilty ghost?
What brought me to this place? What keeps. Her. No; I'll avenge myself; I'll to the temple; me here?
I'll overturn the altar, slab the priest; The court of Pyrrhus has no room for me! I'll hurl destruction, like a whirlwind, round me! Do I still doubt if I should lore or hate him? They must not wed! they must not live! they Hard-bearted man! bow unconcern'd he left me!
shall not! Did he once sigh? bestow one pitying look? Let me be gone; I have no time to lose; Once shed a tear? or speak one soft
, kind word? Stand off! hold me not! I am all distraction! Did he so much as feign one moment's sorrow, O Pyrrhus! tyrant! traitor! thou shalt bleed. To calm my grief, and mitigate his falsehood? Why am I still thus anxious for his life?
Enter ORESTES. Why do I start at bis impending fate? Ores. Madam, 'tis done: your orders are Shall be then live? Shall the base traitor live
And, proud to triumph over Greece in me,
From his own brows he took the diadem,
And bound it on the temples of his captive. What have I done? Is Pyrrhus yet alive? Receive, said he, my crown; receive my faith; What say'st thou? Answer me. Where is Mine and my people's sovereign reign for ever. the king ?
From this blest bour, a father to your son, Cle. Madam, I saw the cruel prince set forward, I'll scourge his foes: henceforward be he styla Triumphant in his looks, and full of joy. The Trojan king: I swear it at the altar, Still as he walk'd, his ravish'd eyes were fixa And call the gods to ratify my rows. On the fair captive; while through shouting His subjects with loud acclamations shook crowds
The spacious dome! our Greeks enrag'd cry'd out She pass'd along with a dejected air, “Revenge! revenge!" broke through the throngAnd seem'd to mourn her Hector to the last.
ing press, Her. Insulting tyrant! I shall burst with rage! And rush'd tumultuous on the unguarded king. But say, Cleone, didst thou mark him well? Pyrrhus awhile oppos'd their clashing swords, Was his brow smooth? Say, did there not appear And dealt his fatal blows on every side Some shade of grief? some little cloud of sorrow? With manly fierceness; till oppress'd by Did he not stop? Did he not once look back?
numbers, Didst thou approach him? Was he not con- Streaming with blood, all over gash'd with founded?
wounds, Did he not-Oh, be quick, and tell me all! He reel’d, he groan'd, and at the altar fell.
Çle. Madam, the tumult' of his joy admits Haste, madam, let us fly! baste to our ships! No thought but love. Unguarded he march'd on, They lie unmoor’d: our friends attend us there. 'Midst a promiscuous throng of friends and foes, Her. What have they done ? His cares all turn upon Astyanax,
Ores. Madam, forgive their rage. Whom he has lodg'd within the citadel, I own your vengeance had been more complete Defended by the strength of all his guards. Had Pyrrhus fall’n by me; and had he known Her. Enough! he dies! the traitor! Where's Hermione chastis'd him by my arm. Orestes?
Her. Peace, monster, peace! Go tell thy Cle. He's in the temple, with his whole retinue.
horrid tale Her. Is he still resolute? Is he still determin'a? To savages, and howl it out in deserts. Cle. Madam, I fear
Wouldst thou impute to me thy barbarous guilt? Her. How? Is Orestes false?
Me wouldst thou make th' accomplice of thy Does he betray me too ?
crimes? Cle. A thousand doubts
Hence, to thy Greeks, and boast thy foul exPerplex his soul, and wound him with remorse;
ploits! His virtue and his love prevail by turns. My soul abhors them! I disclaim the deed. He told me Pyrrhus should not fall ignobly; Be gone! I know thee not, thou fell barbarian! Pyrrhus, the warlike son of great Achilles, What bad he done? What could provoke thy He dreads the censure of the Grecian states,
madness Of all mankind, and fears to stain his honour. To assassinate so great, so brave a man? Her. Poor tim'rous wretch! 'tis false! be Who set thee on? basely fears
Ores. Oh, grant me patience, beaven! To cope with dangers, and encounter death! With your own lips did you not curse the tyrant
Tisthat he fears. Am I bright Helen's daughter? Pronounce his death, and urge me to destroy To vindicate her wrongs all Greece conspir'd;
him? For her confederate nations fought, and kings Her. What if, transported by my boundles were slain;
passion, Troy was o’erthrown, and a whole empire fell. I could not bear to see him wed another, My eyes want force to raise a lover's arm Were you t'obey 2 jealous woman's frenzy? Against a tyrant that has dar'd to wrong me! You should have divd into my inmost thoughi °Cle. Madam, like Helen, trust your cause My heart, though full of rage, was free fro to Greece.
And all my anger was excess of love.
A dreadful instance of your power to punish. Why did you iake me at my word? You saw I'm singled out to bear the wrath of heaven. The struggles of my soul; you heard me rave: Pyl. You hazard your retreat by these delays. You should have question'd me a thousand times, The guards will soon beset us. Your complaints Yet still bave doubted, and have question'd on, Are vain, and may be fatal. Before you
rentur'd on a life so precious. Ores. True, my friend: Ores. Hear me but speak. Heaven knows, And therefore 'twas I thank'd the bounteous gods. against my will
My fate's accomplish'd; I shall die content. Her. Why did you not return? Why not Oh, bear me bence. Blow winds! consult me
Pyl. Let us be
gone. A second time? and, undetermin'd still,
Ores. The murder'd lovers wait me. Hark! Again return, and still find new delays?
they call. What had your rash oflicious Greeks, dire Nay, if your blood still reeks, I'll mingle mine; bloodbounds!
One tomb will hold us all:
raving will return with his misfortunes. Are these the fruits of your detested love? Ores. I am dizzy! Clouds! Quite lost in Your fatal embassy, your
utier darkness! Drove Pyrrhus to my rival, and destroys Guide me, some friendly pilot!through the storm. Both bim and me. He might have lov'd me still, I shiver! Oh, I freeze! So-light returns ; Had you ne'er interpos'd. Avaunt! be gone! 'Tis the grey dawn. See, Pylades! behold, And leave me in Epirus. I renounce I am encompass'd with a sea of blood! My friends, my country, Greece, and all the crimson billows! Oh, my brain's on fire ! mankind
Pyl. How is it, sir ? Repose yourself on me. But chiefly I renounce thee! monster, thee! Ores. Pyrrhus, whal wouldst thou? How
be glares! Ores . Am I awake? where am I? Soft, What envious hand has clos'd thy wounds ?
Have at thee. Be not too rash. Was that Hermione? It is Hermione that strikes. Confusion! W by should ber anger thunder against me? She catches Pyrrhus in her arms. Oh, save me! Was not this blood shed all by her command? How terrible she looks! She knits her brow; I am indeed a most outrageous monster! She frowns me dead; she frights me into madness. A ruffan, murderer, a base assassin!
Where am I? Who are
you? And all to please a false ungrateful woman. Pyl. Alas, poor prince! Henceforward let the laws of nature cease ; Help to support him. How he pants for breath! And let the pale that severs right and wrong,
Ores. This is most kind, my Pylades. Oh, why, Things sacred and profane, be broken down; Why was I born to give thee endless trouble? Gods in their temples, kings upon their thrones, Pýl. All will go well: he settles into reason. Are not in safety while Orestes lives.
Ores. Who talks of reason? Better to have Ok, never more shall my torn mind be heal'd,
none, Nor taste the gentle comforts of repose! Than not enough. Run, some one, tell my Greeks A dreadful band of gloomy cares surround me, I will not have them touch the king. Now, now! And lay strong siege to my distracted soul. I blaze again! See there: look where they come;
A shoal of furies. How they swarm about me! Enter Pelades, attended by Greeks.
My terror! Hide me! Oh, their snaky locks! Pyl . Haste, prince; let us be gone: 'tis death Hark,how they hiss! See,see their flaming brands! to stay.
Now they lei drive at me! How they grin, Andromache reigns queen: she gives the alarm, And shake their iron whips! My ears? what And rows revenge upon the foes of Pyrrhus.
yelling! The people arm and muster in the streets: And see, Hermione! she sets them on. Our Greeks will not he able long to guard Thrust not your scorpions thus into my bosom! The palace gates, and to secure our flight. Oh, I am stung to death! Dispatch me soon! We must be speedy, sir.
There-take my heart, Hermione! Tear it out! Ores. You may depart,
Disjoint me! kill me! Oh, my tortur'd soul! My friends: Hermione and I remain.
Pyl. Kind heaven, restore him to his wonted Her cruelty has quite undone me. Go.
calm! Pil Alas, unhappy princess! she's no more. Oft have I seen him rave, but never thus. Ore. Hermione no more! O, all ye powers! Quite spent!
Assist me, friends, to bear him off. Pyl. Full of disorder, wildness in her looks, Our time is short: should his strong rage return, Wik hands expanded, and dishevell'd hair, 'Twould be beyond our power to force him hence. Brestless and pale, with shrieks she sought Away, my friends! I' hear the portal open. the temple;
[Ereunt. In the mid-way she met the corpse of Pyrrhus : Enter PHOENIX, attended by Guards. She startled at the sight; then, stiff with horror, Phoe. All, all are fled! Orestes is not here! Ga'd frightful! Waken'd from the dire amaze, Triumphant 'villains! The base, giddy rabble, She rais å ber eyes to heaven with such a look Whose hands should all have been employ'd As spoke ber sorrows, and reproach'd the gods ;
with fire, Doen plung'd a poniard deep within her breast, to waste the fleet, flock'd round the dying
princess : Ores. I thank you, gods: I never could
expect And, while they stand agaze, the Greeks embark. To be so wretched! 'You have been industrious Oh, 'tis too plain! this sacrileg’ous murder To finish your decrees; to make Orestes Was authoriz'd. The ambassador's escape