Page images

To feel, to know
I am no better than the thing I am,
Having but just now learned to rate my vileness.
You cannot charge
My unworthy part so bitterly as I do.
If there's about me anything that's honest,
Of true and womanly, it belongs to Lycius,
And all the rest is Grief's.

JULIUS. Then I'll not grieve you— I came with frowns, but I depart in tears And sorrow for you both ; for what he was, And what you might have been—a pair of wonders, The grace and pride of nature—now disgraced, And fallen beyond redress.

You wring my heart

JULIUS. Ay, if you think how you have made him stain The fair-blown pride of his unblemished youth, His studious years— And for what poor exchange 2 these fading charms— I will not say how frail.


O hold—pray hold ! Your words have subtle cruel stings, and pierce More deeply than you aim This sad heart knows How little of such wrong and spiteful ill Were in love's contemplation when it clasped him Lycius and bliss made up my only thought; But now, alas !

A sudden truth dawns on me, like a light
Through the remainder tatters of a dream,
And shows my bliss in shreds.

I pity you !
Nay, doubtless, you will be, some wretched day,
A perished cast-off weed when found no flower—
Or else even then, his substance being gone,
My brother's heart will break at your desertion.

LAMIA. O never, never ! [Ferventiy.

Never, by holy truth ! while I am woman
Be false what may, at least my heart is honest.
Look round you, sir; this wealth, such as it is,
Once mine, is now all his; and when 'tis spent,
I'll beg for him, toil for him, steal for him
God knows how gladly I would share his lot
This speaking moment in a humble shed,
Like any of our peasants!—ay, lay these hands
To rude and rugged tasks, expose these cheeks
You are pleased to flatter, to the ardent sun;
So we might only live in safe pure love
And constant partnership—never to change
In each other's hearts and eyes |

You mend your fault.
This late fragmental virtue much redeems you ;

Pray, cherish it. Hark! what a lawless riot.
[A lowd boisterous showt is heard from below.

O hope–Again (the moise renewed) why then this is a triumph Of your true fame, which I had just mistaken;

Shame on thee, smooth dissembler—shame upon thee!
Is this the music of your songs of sorrow,
And well-feigned penitence—lo here, are these
Your decent retinue

Enter the wild Gallants, flushed with wine.

Sir, by heaven's verity
I do not know a face indeed I do no/ ;
They are strange to me as the future.

Then the future
Must serve us better, chuck. Here, bully mates,
These, lady, are my friends, and friends of Lycius !
Is it so 7 - then Lycius is fallen indeed

CURIO. Ay, he has had his trip—as who has not, sir? I'll warrant you've had your stumbles. JULIUS. & Once—on an ape. Get out o' the way of my shins. [Going. LAMIA. Sir, dearest sir,

In pity do not go, for your brother's sake,
If not for mine—take up my guardianship,

'Gainst these ungentle II].62Il. [She lays hold of JULIUS.
Off wanton, off!
Would you have me of your crew, too? [Exit roughly.
Let him go l—
He has a graft in him of that sour crab,
The Apollonius—let him go, a churl

CURIO. Sweet lady, you look sad—fie, it was ill done of Lycius, To leave his dove so soon—but he has some swan At nest in another place. GALLO.

I’ll bet my mare on’t.

Kind sirs, indeed I'm sorry
Your friend's not here. If he were by,
He would help you to your welcome.

CURIO. We've no doubt on't ; ‘Bitterly. But we'll not grieve, since here we are quite enough For any merriment. GALL0. And as for a welcome, We'll acknowledge it on your cheer.

Then that's but sorry, sir,

If you mean what lies in my heart.


- No, no in faith, We mean what lies in your cellar—wine, rare wine, We will pledge you in floods on't, and when knocked off our legs,

Adore you on our knees.


Hear me, sweet gentles, How you shall win my favor. Set to work and copy— Be each a Lycius. GALL0.

Lycius, forsooth l hang him A model again! the perfect model.


As if we could not match his vices !
Pray ask your Lycius, when he's new come back,
(If ever he come back)
What his father ailed, or if he ailed at all,
And how it ailed too, that his brother Julius
Got no such forged advice.


It had charmed your heart to see how swift he ran,
(Whether to get from hence or gain elsewhere,
I know not), but I never saw such striving,
Save at the Olympic games to win the goal.
(ALL.) {j
Ha! has hal

Laugh on, I pray, laugh on. Ye puny spites |
You think to fret me with these ill coined tales;
But look, I join in your glee, [She attempts to laugh.

Or if I cannot, 'tis because I’m choked with a curse.
[She hurries out.

It works it wings her | What shall we next?
Follow her, or carry her off?

« PreviousContinue »