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Thus am I doubly arm’d: my death and life, My bane and antidote, are both before me : This in a moment brings me to an end : But this informs me I shall never die. The soul, fecur’d in her existence, smiles At the drawn dagger, and defies its point. The stars shall fade away, the fun himself Grow dim with age, and nature sink in years; But thou shalt flourish in immortal youth, Unhurt amidit the war of elements, The wrecks of inatter, and the crush of worlds.

What means this heaviness that hangs upon me? This lethargy that creeps through all my senses? Nature oppress’d, and harrass’d out with care, Sinks down to rest. This once I'll favour her, That my awaken’d soul may take her flight, Renewd in all her Itrength, and fre with life, An offering fit for heaven. Let guilt or fear Disturb man's relt : Cato knows neither of them, Indifferent in his choice, to sleep or die.

Enter PORTIUS.

But ha! how's this, my fon? why this intrusion? Were not my orders that I would be private ? Why am I disobey'd ?

PORTIUS.

Alas, my father! What means this sword ? this inftrument of death? Let me convey it hence !

CATO

CATO.

Ralh youth, forbear!

PORTIUS. o let the prayers, th' entreaties of

your

friends, Their tears, their common danger, wrest it from you.

с Ато. Wouldst thou betray me? would'ft thou give me up A flave, a captive, into Cæsar's hands? Retire, and learn obedience to a father, Or know, young man !

PORTIUS.

Look not thus fternly on me ; You know I'd rather die than disobey you.

CA TO.
'Tis well! again I'm master of myself.
Now, Cæsar, let thy troops beset our gates,
And bar each avenue, thy gathering fleets
O'er-spread the sea, and stop up every port;
Cato fhall open to himfelf a passage,
And mock thy hopes

PORTIUS.

O Sir, forgive your son,
Whose grief hangs heavy on him! O my father !
How am I lure it is not the last time
I e'er thall call you so! Be not displeas’d,
O be not angry with me whilft I weep,
And, in the anguish of my heart, befeech you
To quit the dreadful purpose of your soul.

CATO.
Thou hast been ever good and dutiful.

[Embracing him ů

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To the south gate, where Marcus holds the watch.
I saw, and call'd to stop him, but in vain ;
He toss'd his arm aloft, and proudly told me,
He would not stay and perish like Sempronius.

с А то.
Perfidious men! but haste my son, and fee
Thy brother Marcus acts a Roman's part.

[Exit PORTIUS,
-Lucius, the torrent bears too hard upon me:
Justice gives way to force : the conquer'd world
Is Cæsar's : Cato has no business in it.

LUCIUS.
While pride, oppression, and injustice reign,
The world will still demand her Cato's presence.
In pity to mankind, fubmit to Cæfar,
And reconcile thy mighty soul to life.

CA TO.
Would Lucius have me live to fwell the number
Of Cæsar's llaves, or by a base submission
Give up the cause of Rome, and own a tyrant ?

LUCIUS,
The victor never will impofe on Cato
Ungenerous terms. His enemies confess
The virtues of humanity are Cæsar's.

САто.
Curse on his virtues ! they've undone his country.
Such popular humanity is treason-
But see young Juba! the good youth appears
Full of the guilt of his perfidious subjects.

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LUCIUS.

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LUCIUS.
Alas, poor prince! his fate deserves compassion.

Enter JUBA.

JUBA.
I blush, and am confounded to appear
Before thy presence, Cato.

CATO.

What 's thy crime?

JUBA. I'm a Numidian.

CATO.

And a brave one too, Thou hast a Roman foul.

JUBA.

Hast thou not heard Of my false countrymen ?

САто.

Alas! young prince,
Falsehood and fraud shoot up in every soil,
The product of all climes.-Rome has its Cæfars.

JUBA.
'Tis generous thus to comfort the distress d.

CA TO. 'Tis just to give applause where 'tis deserv'd; Thy virtue, prince, has stood the test of fortune, Like purest gold, that, tortur'd in the furnace, Comes out more bright, and brings forth all its weight.

J UBA.

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Weep not, my son. All will be well again.
The righteous gods, whom I have fought to please,
Will fuccour Cato, and preserve his children.

PORTIUS,
Your words give comfort to my drooping heart.

САто.
Portius, thou may'st rely upon my conduct.
Thy father will not act what misbecomes him.
But go, my son, and see if aught be wanting
Among thy father's friends : see them embark'd;
And tell me if the winds and seas befriend them.
My soul is quite weigh'd down with care, and asks
The soft refreshment of a moinent's Neep. [Exit

. PORTIUS. My thoughts are more at ease, my heart revives.

Enter MARCIA.

O Marcia, O my sister, still there 's hope !
Our father will not cast away a life
So needful to us all, and to his country.
He is retir'd to rest, and feems to cherish
Thoughts full of peace. He has dispatch'd me hence
With orders, that bespeak a mind compos’d,
And studious for the safety of his friends.
Marcia, take care that none disturb his slumbers. [Exit.

MARCIA.
O ye immortal powers, that guard the just,
Watch round his couch, and soften his repose,
Banith his forrows, and becalm his soul
With easy dreams; remember all his virtues !
And thow mankind that goodness is your care.

Enter

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