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Attended by the chiefs who fought the field
(Now friendly mix’d, and in one troop compell'u).
Composd his looks to counterfeited cheer,
And bade them not for Arcite's life to fear.
But that which gladded all the warrior-train,
Though most were forely wounded, none were flain.
The surgeons foon despoil'd them of their arms,
And some with falves they cure, and some with charms;
Foment the bruises, and the pains assuage,
And heal their inward hurts with sovereign draughts of
The king in person visits all around,
Comforts the sick, congratulates the found;
Honours the princely chiefs, rewards the rest,
And holds for thrice three days a royal feast.
None was disgrac'd; for falling is no shame;
And cowardice alone is loss of faine.
The venturous knight is from the saddle thrown;
But 'tis the fault of fortune, not his own,
If crowds and palins the conquering fide adorn.
The victor under better stars was born :
The brave man seeks not popular applause,
Nor overpower'd with arms deserts his cause;
Untham'd, though foild, he does the best he can ;
Force is of brutes, but honour is of man.
Thus Theseus smil'd on all with equal grace ;
And each was set according to his place.
With ease were reconcil'd the differing parts,
For envy nevar dwells in noble hearts.
At length they took their leave, the time expir’d;
Well pleas’d, and to their several homes retir'd.
Mean while the health of Arcite still impairs ;
From bad proceeds to worse, and mocks the leeches cares;
Swoln is his breat ; his inward pains increase,
All means are us'd, and all without success.
The clotted blood lies heavy on his heart,
Corrupts, and there remains in spite of art :
Nor breathing veins, nor cupping, will prevail ;
All outward remedies and inward fail :
The mold of nature's fabric is destroy'd,
Her vessels discompos’d, her virtue void:
The bellows of his lungs begin to swell :
All out of frame is every secret cell,
Nor can the good receive, nor bad expel.
Those breathing organs thus within opprest,
With venom soon distend the finews of his breast.
Nought profits him to save abandon'd life,
Nor vomit's upward aid, nor downward laxative.
The midmost region batter'd and destroy'd,
When nature cannot work, th' effect of art is void,
For physic can but mend our crazy state,
Patch an old building, not a new create.
Arcite is doom'd to die in all his pride,
Must leave his youth, and yield his beauteous bride,
Gain'd hardly, against right, and unenjoy’d.
When 'twas declar'd all hope of life was past,
Conscience (that of all physic works the last)
Caus'd him to send for Emily in haste.
With her, at his desire, came Palamon ;
Then on his pillow rais'd, he thus begun.
No language can express the smallest part
Of what I feel, and suffer in my heart,
whom best I love and valué most;
But to your service I bequeath my ghost;
Which from this mortal body when unty'd,
Unseen, unheard, shall hover at your side;
Nor fright you waking, nor your sleep offend,
But wait officious, and your steps attend :
How I have lov’d, excuse my faltering tongue,
My spirits feeble, and my pains are strong :
This I may say, I only grieve to die
Because I lose my charming Emily:
To die, when Heaven had put you in my power,
Fate could not chuse a more malicious hour!
What greater curse could envious fortune give,
Than just to die, when I began to live !
Vain men, how vanishing a bliss we crave,
Now warm in love, now withering in the grave !
Never, O never more to see the fun !
Still dark, in a damp vault, and still alone!
This fate is common; but I lose
breath Near bliss, and yet not bless'd before my
Farewel; but take me dying in your arms,
'Tis all I can enjoy of all your
This hand I cannot but in death resign;
Ah! could I live! but while I live 'tis mine.
I feel my end approach, and thus embrac’d,
Am pleas’d to die; but hear me speak my last,
Ah! my sweet foe, for you, and you alone,
my faith with injur'd Palamon.
But love the sense of right and wrong confounds,
Strong love and proud ambition have no bounds.
And much I doubt, should heaven my life prolong,
I should return to justify my wrong:
For, while my former flames remain within,
Repentance is but want of power to fin.
With mortal hatred I pursued his life,
Nor he, nor you, were guilty of the strife :
Nor I, but as I lov'd ; yet all combin'd,
Your beauty, and my impotence of mind;
And his concurrent flame, that blew my
For ftill our kindred fouls had one desire.
He had a moment's right in point of time;
Had I feen first, then his had been the crime.
ate made it mine, and justify'd his right;
Nor holds this earth a more deserving knight,
For virtue, valour, and for noble blood,
Truth, honour, all that is compriz'd in good;
So help me Heaven, in all the world is none
So worthy to be lov'd as Palamon.
He loves you too, with such an holy fire,
As will not, cannot, bụt with life expire :
Our vow'd affections both have often try'd,
could ours divide.
Then, by my love's inviolable band,
By my long suffering, and my short command,
If e’er you plight your vows when I am gone,
Have pity on the faithful Palamon.
This was his last; for death came on amain,
And exercis'd below his iron reign ;
Then upward to the seat of life he goes :
Sense fled before him, what he touch'd he froze :
Yet could he not his closing eyes withdraw,
Though less and less of Emily he saw;
So, speechless, for a little space he lay;
Then grasp'd the hand he held, and figh’d his soul away.
But whither went his soul, let such relate
Who search the secrets of the future state :
Divines can say but what themselves believe ;
Strong proofs they have, but not demonstrative :
For, were all plain, then all sides must agree,
And faith itself be lost in certainty.
To live uprightly then is sure the best,
To save ourselves, and not to damn the rest.
The soul of Arcite went where heathens go,
Who better live than we, though less they know.
In Palamon a manly grief appears;
Silent, he wept, afham'd to Thew his tears:
Emilia thriek'd but once, and then, oppress'd
With sorrow, sunk upon her lover's breast:
Till Theseus in his arms convey'd with care,
Far from so sad a fight, the fwooning fair.
""Twere loss of time her forrow to relate ;
Ill bears the sex a youthful lover's fate,
When just approaching to the nuptial ftate.
But, like a 'low-hung cloud, it rains so fast,
That all at once it falls, and cannot lat.