페이지 이미지
PDF
ePub

and see

That best of men? Oh, bad I fallin like him, That still broke foremost through the crowd And could bave been thus mourn'd, I had

of patriots, been happy.

[Aside. As with a hurricane of zeal transported, Harcia. Tis not in fate to case my iortur'd And virtuous er'n to madnessbreast.

Cato. Trust me, Lucius, Oh, be was all made up of love and charms! Our civil discords have produc'd such crimes, Whatever maid could wish, or man admire: Such monstrous crimes, I am surpris'd at nothing. Delight of ev'ry eye; when he appear'd, -Oh, Lucius, I am sick of this bad world! A secret pleasure gladden'd all that saw him. The daylight and the sun grow painful to me. Oh, Juba, Juba ! Juba. Wbai means that voice? Did she not

Enter PORTIUS. call on Juba ? Aside.

But see where Portius comes: what means Marcia. lle's dead, and never knew how

this haste? much i lov'd him; Lucia, who knows but his poor, bleeding heart,

Why are thy looks thus chang'd ? Amidst its agonies, remember'd Marcia,

Por. My heart is griev'd: ind the last words he utler'd called me cruel! I bring such news as will afflict my father.

Cato. Has Caesar shed more Roman blood ? Alas! be knew not, hapless youth, he knew not Marcia's whole soul was full of love and Juba! The traitor Syphax, as within the square

Por. Not so. Juba. Where am I? Do I live? or am indeed He exercis'd his troops, the signal giv'n, What Marcia thinks? All is Elysium round me! Flew off at once with his Numidian horse

[.4side. To the south gate, where Marcus holds the Marcia. Ye dear remains of the most lov'd

watch; of men,

I saw, and call'd to stop him, but in vain : Jor modesty nor virtue here forbid He toss'd his arm aloft, and proudly told me, À last embrace, while thus

He would not stay and perish like Sempronius. Juba. See, Marcia, see,

Cato. Per idious man! But haste, my son, [Throwing himself before her. The bappy Juba lives! he lives to catch Thy brother Marcus acts a Roman's pari. That dear embrace, and to return it too

[Exit Portius. With mutual warmth and eagerness of love. -Lucius, the torrent bears too hard upon me: Marria. With pleasure and amaze I stand Justice gives way to force: the conquer'd world transported!

Is Caesar's! Caio has no business in it. I thou art Juba, who lies there?

Luc. While pride, oppression, and injustice Juba. A wretch,

reign, Disguis'd like Juba on a curs'd design.

The world will still demand her Calo's presence, I could not bear

In pily to mankind submit to Caesar, To leave thee in the neighbourhood of death, And reconcile thy mighty soul to life. Batllew, in all the haste of love, to find thee; Cato. Would Lucius have me live to swell I found thee weeping, and confess this once,

the number im rapt with joy, to see my Marcia's tears. Of Caesar's slaves, or by a base submission Varcia. I've been surpris’d in an unguarded Give up the cause of Rome, and own a tyrant ? bour,

Luc. The victor never will impose on Cata Bat must not now go back; the love, that lay Ungen'rous terms. His enemies confess #Jimmther'd in my breast, bas broke through all The virtues of humanity are Caesar's. iw weak restraints, and burns in its full lustre. Cato. Curse on his virtues! they've undone i Canot, if I would, conceal it from thee.

his country. Juta. My joy, my best belov'd, my only wish! Such popular bumanity is treasoniba shall I speak the transport of my soul? But see young. Juba; the good youth appears, Marcia. Lucia, thy arm. Lead to my apart

Full of the guilt of his perfidious subjecis !

Luc. Alas, poor prince! his fate deserres ment. O prince! I blush to think what I have said,

compassion. Et faie bas wrested the confession from me;

Enter JUBA. Go ea, and prosper in the paths of honour. Tory virtue will excuse my passion for thee, Juba. I blush, and am confounded to appear And make the gods propitious to our love. Before thy presence, Cato.

[Ereunt Marcia and Lucia. Cato. What's thy crime ? Jabe. I am so blest, I fear 'tis all a dream. Juba. I'm a Numidian. Fortune, thou now hast made amends for all Cato. And a brave one too. Thou hast a Tot past unkindness: I absolve my stars.

Roman soul. Healthough Numidia add ber conquer'd towns Juba. Hast thou not heard of

my

false Had prosinces to swell the victor's triumph,

countrymen? Joba'will never at his fate repine:

Cato. Alas, young prince! Let Caesar bare the world, if Marcia's mine. Falsehood and fraud shoot up in ev'ry soil,

[Exit. The product of all climes-Rome has its Caesars. Sase II.-Before the Palace. A March

Juba. 'Tis gen'rous thus to comfort the dis

tress'd. at a Distance.

Cato. 'Tis just to give applause where 'tis Enter Cato and Lucius.

deseru'd : Luc. I stand astonish'd! What, the bold Thy virtue, prince, has stood the test of fortune, Sempronius,

Like purest gold, that, tortur'd in the furnace,

[ocr errors]

bis duty:

seest me

[Act V. Comes out more bright, and brings forth all Cato. Caesar asham'd! Has he not seen its weight.

Pharsalia!

Luc. 'Tis time thou save thyself and us.
Enter PORTIUS.

Cato. Lose not a thought on me; I'm out Por. Misfortune on misfortune! grief on

of danger: grief!

Heav'n will not leave me in the victor's hand. My brother Marcus

Caesar shall never say, be conquer'd Cato. Calo. Ha! what has he done?

But oh, my friends! your safety fills my heart Has he forsook bis post? Has be giv'n way? With anxious thoughts; a thousand secret Did he look tamely on, and let them pass?

terrors Por. Scarce bad I left my father, but I met Rise in my soul. How shall I save my friends ? him

'Tis now, O Caesar, I begin to fear ihee! Borne on the shields of his surviving, soldiers, Luc. Caesar has mercy, if we ask it of bim. Breathless and pale, and cover'd o'er with Cato. Then ask it, I conjure you; let him wounds.

know Long, at the head of his few faithful friends, Whate'er was done against him, Cato did it. He stood the shock of a whole host of foes, Add, if you please, that I request it of him Till, obstinately brave, and bent on death, That I myself, with tears, request it of bimOppress'd with multitudes, he greatly fell. The virtue of 'my friends may pass unpunish’d. Calo. I'm satisfy'd.

Juba, my heart is troubled for thy sake. Por. Nor did he fall, before

Should I advise thee to regain Numidia, His sword bad pierc'd through the false heart or seek the conqueror?of Syphax.

Juba. If I forsake thee Yonder he lies. I saw the boary traitor Whilst I have life, may beav'n abandon Juba! Grin in the pangs of death, and bite the ground. Cato. Thy virtues, prince, if I foresee aright, Cato. Thanks to the gods, my boy has done Will one day make thee great; at Rome,

hereafter, - Portius, when I am dead, be sure you place Twill be no crime to have been Calo's friend. Ilis urn near mine.

Portius, draw near: my son, thou oft hast seen Por. Long may they keep asunder! Thy sire engag'd in a corrupled state, Luc. Oh, Cato, arm thy soul with all its Wrestling with vice and faction: vow thou

patience; See where the corpse ofthy dead son approaches! Spent, overpower'd, despairing of success; The citizens and senators, alarm'd,

Let me advise thee to retreat betimes llare gather'd round it, and altend it weeping. To thy paternal seat, the Sabine field;

Where the great Censor toil'd with bis owa Dead March. Cato meets the Corpse. Lu

hands, CIUS, Senators, Guards, etc. attending.

And all our frugal ancestors were bless'a Calo. Welcome, my son! Here lay bim In humble virtues, and a rural life; downi, my friends,

There live retir’d, pray for the peace of Rome ; Full in my sight, that I may view at leisure Content thyself to be obscurely good. The bloody corse, and count those glorious When vice prevails, and impious men bear wounds.

sway, -How beautiful is death, when earn'd by virtue! The post of honour is a private slation. Who would not be that youth? What pity is il Por. I hope my father does not recommend That we can die but once to serve our country! A life to Portius that he scorns himself. -\Vhy sits this sadness on your brows, my Cato. Farewell, my friends! If there be any

friends? I should have blush'd if Cato's house had stood who dare not trust the victor's clemency, Secure, and flourish'd in a civil war. Portius, behold thy brother, and remember

Know there are ships prepar'd, by my command, Thy life is not thy own when Rome demands it

. Is there aught else, my friends, I can do for you

That shall convey you to the wish'd-for pori. When Rome demands; but Rome is now no The conqueror draws near. Once more, farewell Oh, liberly! oh, virtue! oh, my country!

If e'er we meet hereafter, we shall meet Juba. Behold that upright man! Rome Gills Where Caesar never shall approach us more

In happier climes, and on a safer sbore,

[Pointing to his dead Son With tears, that flow'd not o'er his own dear There the brave youth, with love of virtue fir'd Calo. Wbate'er the Roman virtue has subdu'd, Shall know he conquer'd.' The firm patrio

[Aside. Who greatly in his country's cause expir’d, The sun's whole course, the day and year, are

there, Caesar's :

Who made the welfare of mankind his care For him the self-devoted Decii died,

Though still by faction, vice, and fortune cros The Fabii fell, and the great Scipios conquer'd : Shall find the gen'rous labour was not lost. Ev'n Pompey fought for Caesar. "Oh, my friends,

[Dead March. Exeunt in fie How is the toil of fate, the work of

ages,

neral Procession.
The Roman empire, fallin! Oh, curs'd ambition!
Fall'n into Caesar's hands! Our great forefathers

ACT V.
Had left him nought to conquer but his country:
Juba. Wbile Cato lives, Caesar will blush

SCENE I.- A Chamber.

Cato solus, sitting in a thoughtful Posture Mankind enslav'd, and be asham'd of empire. in his Hand, Plato's Book on the Immor

of you,

more.

his eyes

son.

to see

Oh, my

tality of the Soul. A drawn Sword on And bar cach avenue; thy gath'ring fleets the Table, by him.

O'erspread the sea, and stop up ev'ry port; Cato. It must be so-Plato thou reason'st Cato 'shall open to himself à passage, well

And mock thy hopes.Else whence this pleasing hope, this fond desire,

Por. [Kneeling) Oh, sir! forgive your son, This longing after immortality ?

Whose grief hangs heavy on him. Or wbence this secret dread, and inward horror,

father! Of faling into nougbt? Why shrinks the soul How am I sure it is not the last time Back on hersell, and startles at destruction? I e'er shall call you so ? Be not displeas'd, Tis the disinity that stirs within us;

Oh, be not angry with me whilst I weep, Tis bear's itself that points out an hereafter, And, in the anguish of my heart, beseech you And intimales eternity to man.

To quit the dreadful purpose of your soul! Eternity! thou pleasing, dreadful thought!

Cato. Thou hast been ever good and dutiThrough what sariety of untried being,

ful. [Embracing him. Through what new scenes and changes must Weep, not, my son, all will be well again; we pass?

The righteous gods, whom I have sought to The wide, the unbounded prospect lies be

please, fore me:

Will succour Cato, and preserve his children. Bat shadows, clouds, and darkness, rest upon it.

Por. Your words give comfort to my droopHere will I bold. If there's a power above us

ing heart. od that there is, all nature cries aloud

Cato. Portius, thou may'st rely upon my

conduct: Through all her works), he must delight in virtue ;

Thy father will not act what misbecomes him. And that which he delights in must be bappy. But go, my son, and see if aught be wanting Bet when, or wbere?- this world was made Among thy father's friends; see ihem embark'd, for Caesar:

And tell me if the winds and seas befriend them. I'm weary of conjectures, this must end them. My soul is quite weigh'd down with care,

and asks [Laying his Hand on his Sword. Thus am I doubly arm'd: my death and life, The soft refreshment of a moment's sleep. My bane and antidote, are both before me.

Por. My thoughts are more at ease, my This in a moment brings me to an end;

heart revives— [Exit Cali. But this informs me I shall never die.

Enter MARCIA.
The soul, secur'd in her existence, smiles
At the drawn dagger, and defies its point.

Oh, Marcia! Oh, my sister, still there's hope The stars shall fade away, the sun himself

Our father will not cast away a life Grow dim with age, and nature sink in years. He is retir'd to rest, and seems to cherish

So needful to us all, and to his country: But thou shalt flourish in immortal youth, l'nhurt amidst the war of elements,

Thoughts full of peace. - He has dispatch'd Tbe wreck of matter, and the crush of worlds.

me hence Wbat means this heaviness that hangs upon me? With orders that bespeak a mind composid, This lethargy that creeps through all my senses? And studious for the safety of his friends. Nature, oppress'd and harrassd out with care, Marcia, take care that none disturb his slumSinks down to rest. This once l'il favour her,

bers.

[Exit. That my awaken'd soul may take her flight,

Marcia. Oh, ye immortal powers, that guard Resea'd is all her strength, and fresh with life,

the just, As of'ring fit for heav'n.' Let guilt or fear 'Watch round his couch and soften his repose, Disturb man's rest, Cato knows neither of them, Banish his sorrows, and becalm his soul

With Lodifi'rent in his choice to sleep or dic.

easy dreams; remember all his virtues,

And show mankind that goodness is your care! Enter Portius. Bat, ha! who's this? my son! Why this in

Enter Lucia. trusion?

Lucia. Where is your father, Marcia, where Were not my orders that I would be private?

is Cato? Why am I disobey'd ?

Marcia. Lucia, speak low, he is retir'd Por. Alas, my father! What means this sword, this instrument of Lucia, I feel a gentle dawning hope death? Rise in my soul –We shall be happy still

. Let me convey it hence.

Lucia. Alas, I tremble when I think on Cato! Cata. Rasb youth, forbear!

In every view, in every thought I tremble! Por. Oh, let the pray’rs, th entreaties of Cato is stern and awfúl as a god; your friends,

He knows not how to wink at human frailty, Theis tears, their common danger, wrest it Or pardon weakness, that he never felt. from you!

Marcia. Though stern and awful to the foes Cats. Wouldst thou betray me? Wouldst

of Rome, thou give me up

He is all goodness, Lucia, always mild; Arre, a captive, into Caesar's bands? Compassionate and gentle to his friends; Here, and learn obedience to a father, Filld with domestic tenderness, the best, DE EDow, young man

The kindest father; I have ever found him Pir Look not thus sternly on me; Easy and good, and bounleous to my wishes. be know, I'd rather die than disobey you. Lucia. "Tis his consent alone can make us Cato. Tis well! again I'm master of myself.

blest. ka, Caesar, let tby troops beset our gates, But who knows Calo's thoughts?

to rest.

em

Who knows how yet he niay dispose of Oh, Marcia, what we seard is come to pass! Portius,

Cato has fallin upon his sword – Or how he has determind of thyself?

Luc. Oh, Portius, Marcia. Let him but live, commit the rest Hide all the horrors of the mournful tale, to heav'n.

And let us guess the rest.

Por. I've rais'd bim up,
Enter Lucius.

And plac'd him in his chair; where, pale and Luc. Sweet are the slumbers of the vir

faint, tuous man!

He gasps for breath, and as his life flows Oh, Marcia, I have seen thy godlike father;

from him, Some power invisible supports his soul, Demands to see his friends.

His servants, And bears it up in all its wonted greatness.

weeping, A kind, refreshing sleep is fall’n upon him: Obsequious to his order, bear him bither! I saw bim stretch'd at ease; his fancy lost Mar. Oh, heav'n! assist me in this dreadful In pleasing dreams; as I drew near his couch,

hour, He smild, and cried, Caesar, thou canst not To pay the last sad duties to my father!

hurt me. Marcia. His mind still labours with some

Caro brought on in a Chair. dreadful thought.

Juba. These are thy triumphs, thy exploits,

0 Caesar! Enter Juba.

Luc. Now is Rome fall'n indeed! Juba. Lucius, the horsemen are return'd Cato. Ilere set me downfrom viewing

Portius, come near me,

(Are

my

friends The number, strength, and posture of our foes,

bark'd ? Who now encamp within a short hour's march; Can any thing be thought of for their service ? On the high point of yon bright western tower Whilst I yet live, let me not live in vainWe ken them from afar; the setting, sun Oh, Lucius, art thou here?- Thou art too Plays on their shining arms and burnish'd

goodhelmets,

Let this our friendship live between our chilAnd covers all the field with gleams of fire.

drenLuc. Marcia, 'tis time we should awake thy Make Purlius happy in thy daughter Lucia. father.

Marcia, my daughterCaesar is still dispos'd to give us terms,

Oh, bend me forward !-Juba loves thee, Marcia. And waits at distance till he hears from Cato. A senator of Rome, wbile Rome surviv'd,

Would not have match'd his daughter with Enter PORTIUS.

a kingPortius, thy looks speak somewhat of impor- But Caesar's arms have thrown down all distance.

tinctionWhat tidings dost thou bring? Methinks I see I'm sick to death-Oh, when shall I get loose Unusual gladness sparkle in thy eyes,

From this vain world, th' abode of guilt and Por. As I was hasting to the port, where now

sorrow! My father's friends, impatient for a passage,

And yet, methinks, a beam of light breaks in Accuse the ling'ring winds, a sail arriv'd On my departing soul. Alas, I fear From Pompey's son, who, through the realms I've been too hasty! - Oh, ye powers, that of Spain,

search Calls out for vengeance on his father's death, The heart of man, and weigh his inmost And rouses the whole nation up to arms.

thoughts, Were Cato at their head, once more might If I have done amiss, impute it nolRome

The best may err, but you are good, and Assert her rights, and claim her liberty.

Oh!

[Dies. (A groan is heard. Por. There fled the greatest soul that ever But, bark! what means that groan? - Oh,

warmd give me way,

A Roman breast:-Oh, Cato! oh, my friend! And let me fly into my father's presence! Thy will shall be religiously observ'd.

[Exit. But let us bear this awful corpse to Caesar, Luc. Cato, amidst his slumbers, thinks on And lay it in his sight, that it may stand, Rome,

A fence bel wixt us and the victor's wrath: And, in the wild disorder of his soul, Cato, though dead, shall still protect his friends. Mourns o'er his country. - Ha! second groan

From hence, let fierce contending nation Heav'n guard us all!

know, Mar. Alas, 'tis not the voice

What dire effects from civil discord flow: Of one who sleeps ; 'tis agonizing pain- "Tis this that shakes our country with alarms 'Tis death is in that sound

And gives up Rome a prey to Roman arms

Produces fraud, and cruelty, and strife,
Re-enter Portius.

And robs the guilty world of Cato's life. Por. Oh, sight of woe!

[E.reun

a

CONGREVE. WillY CONCRETI, descended from the Congreves in Staffordshire, who trace their ancestry s far hack ns before the crequest, first saw the light at Bardsa, near Leeds, Yorkshire, 1672. He was educated first at Kilkenny; sd acvards seat to the university in Dublin, under the direction of Dr. Ashe. His father, who was only a younger kehet, ad prosided for in the army by a commission on the Irish establishment, had been compelled to undertako . 5545 bisher in conseqnence of his command, being desirous his study should be directed to profit as well as impresel, kat him over to England, and placed him at the age of 16 as student in the Temple. Here he lived ar sferal trans, bat with very little attention to statutes or reports. His disposition to become an author appeared Fery carly; Jahoda says, “ Among all the efforts of early genius, which literary history records, I doubt whether any cse can be produced that more surpasses the common limits of nature than tho plays of Congreye." His first dramatic labear wa Tke 04 Baickelor, acted in 1693. This piece introduced him to Lord Halifax, the Maecenas of the age, s, decrea of raising so promising a genius above the necessity of too hasty productions, made him one of the combinezerı fer liceacing hackney-coaches. He soon after bestowed upon him a place in the Pipe-office, with one in the Cutes d too peads a year. 1694 Congreve produced The Double Dealer. The next year, when Betterton opened tho Dez Tirae ia Lincoln's-Inn Fields, he gave him his comedy of Love for Love. The Biographia Dramatica says, * This sei with so much success, that they immediately offered the author a share in the profits of the house, on cesta ef his farnisbing them with one play yearly. This ofl'er he accepted; but whether through indolence or that estretes which he looked on as necessary to his works, his Mourning Bride did not come out till 1697, nor his

are the old till two years after that." He had been involved in a long contest with Jeremy Collier, a futheas ad izplkable non-juror, who published A Short View of the Immorality and Profaneness of the English Stuge, is which de bad very severely attacked some of Congreve's pieces: this, added to the ill success his Way of the Toid though an exceeding good comedy, met wild, completed his disgust; and he made a resolution of never more writing ser se stage. Johnson says, "At last comedy grew more modest, and Collier lived to see the reward of his labour in the refrestinad the theatre." In 1714, Congreve was appointed Commissioner of Wine Licences, and 17. Dec. same year was nosisded Secretary of Jamaica, making altogether a yearly income of 1900 pounds. Johnson says, “His honours were yet far gezter tas bis profits. Every writer mentioned him with respect; and, among other testimonies to his merit, Steele mado bis the petres af his Miscellany, and Popo inscribed to him his Translation of the Niad. But he treated the Museg

i agrattade ; for, having long conversed familiarly with the great, he wished to be considered rather as a man of fesbiss iban of vit; and, when he received a visit from Voltaire, disgusted him by the despicable foppery of desiring to be cessidered not as an author bat a gentleman; to which the Frenchman replied, 'If he had been only a gentlewas, be shoald not have come to visit him.'He died at his house in Surrey. Street, in the Strand, January 29,

O limits will not allow us to give Johnson's account of this author; but every onc agrees in considering he suprisingly ezineat in his Theatrical pieces; at the same time, when ho quitted Liis tract, he evidently failed; od slikoacta kis Miscellaneous Poems will ever maintain a respectable place in British literature, his crown was too clarly weithet for these to add ono leaf to his puutical fame.

THE MOURNING BRIDE,

ACTED at Lincoln's-Inn Fields. 1697. This is the only Tragedy our anthor ever wrote , and it met with more access tbas sey of his other pieces. Although Dr. Johnson accuses it of bombast and want of real nature; notFitstodisg Dibdio says, that it is overcharged with imagery, as his comedies are with point, and if we try to concere it is with an aching imagination, that may raise astonislıment, but must destroy pleasure; it is to be considered tr, " the poet's eye in a fine phrenzy rolling," in embodying “airy nothing," raises his mind so high above tee things of this world in his look “from earth to heaven," that his conceptions appear too bold for a cool, criticis

It is certain, that the language of passion, in real life, is boisterous and elevated; and, in persons of a certia cæt, may go a step farther than what in cooler moments would appear simple nature ; and Dr. Johnson's criti. csnis cridaty unprepared, for he says himself, he had not read Congreve's plays for many years,

Could the great britse bave been raised by the same feelings that actuated Congreye in coniposing his tragedy, it is very sure, bo

set bare pranounced so severe a sentence. We have not the smallest pretension to call in question the opinions s yra . an as Johnson on this play; knowing his attention was entirely directed to chasten the taste of the agos ke ve ds think (if we can judge by onr own feelings), that he must have feit a secret delight himself in reading this piece; a hope we do not overslep the bounds of modesty in declaring the story to be extremely pleasing, affecting, aad wel teld; the langnage, although extremely elevated, may be allowed to be this side of bombast, expressing tho des pertaps in an in passioned manner; but we believe not beyond the limits of poetical nature; and will content esses with sometimes being astonished for pleasure. Dr. Johnson declares, thal, “If he were to select from the

de says of English poetry the most poetical paragraph, he knows not what he could prefer to an exclamation in tis tragedy (* No, all is hush'd, and still as death'lis dreadful!” to: “Thy voice--my own allrights me with is ecbeasi Johnson continues, "He who reads these lines enjoys for a moment the powers of a poet; ho feelo wta be reacrabers to have felt before; but he feels it with great increase of sensibility; he recognises a familiar isang bas seeis it again amplified and expanded, embellished with beauty, and enlarged with majesty".

[blocks in formation]

ACT 1.

Than trees or flint? O, force of constant woc! SCENE I-A Room of State. Tis not in harmony to calm my griess. The Curtain rising slowly to soft Music, Anselmo sleeps, and is at peace; last night discovers ALMERJA in Mourning, LEONO- The silent tomb receiv'd the good old king; RA waiting ALMERIA rises and comes He and his sorrows now are safely lodg'd forward.

Within its cold, but hospitable bosom. Alm. Music has charms to sooth a savage Why am not I at peace? breast,

Leon. Dear madam, cease, To soften rocks, or bend a knotted oak. Or moderate your grief; there is no cause-I've read that things inanimate have mov'd, Alm. No cause! Peace, peace! there is eter And, as with living souls, have been inform’d, Bmagic numbers and persuasive sound. And misery eternal will succeed. What then am I? Am I more senseless grown Thou canst not tell thou hast indeed no cause.

nal cause,

« 이전계속 »