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And useful for your lordship; and once more
I say aloud, they are yours.
Lov. I dare not own
What’s by unjust and cruel means extorted:
My fame and credit are more dear to me,
Than so to expose thein to be censured by
The public voice.
Over. You run, my lord, no hazard :
Your reputation shall stand as fair
In all good men's opinions as now;
Nor can my actions, though condemn'd for ill,
Cast any foul ašpersion upon yours.
For though I do contemn report myself,
As a mere sound; I still will be so tender
Of what concerns you in all points of honour,
That the immaculate whiteness of
Nor your unquestioned integrity,
Shall e'er be sullied with one taint or spot
innocence and candour.
ambition is to have my daughter
Right honourable; which my lord can make her:
And might I live to dance upon my knee
A young lord Lovell, born by her unto you,
I write nil ultra to my proudest hopes.
As for possessions and annual rents,
Equivalent to maintain you in the port
Your noble birth and present state require,
I do remove that burden from
shoulders, And take it on mine own: for though I ruin The country to supply your riotous waste,
The scourge of prodigals (want) shall never find you. Lov. Are you not frighted with the imprecations
And curses of whole families, made wretehed
By your sinister practices ?
Over. Yes, as rocks are
When foaming billows split themselves against
Their flinty ribs; or as the moon is moved,
When wolves, with hunger pined, howl at her bright-
I am of a solid temper, and, like these,
Steer on a constant course: with mine own sword,
It call'd into the field, I can make that right,
Which fearful enemies murmur'd at as wrong.
Now, for those other peddling complaints,
Breathed out in bitterness ; as, when they call me
Extortioner, tyrant, cormorant, or intruder
On my poor neighbour's right, or grand encloser
Of what was common to my private use;
Nay, when my ears are pierced with widows' cries,
And undone orphans wash with tears my threshold;
I only think what 'tis to have my daughter
Right honourable ; and 'tis a powerful charm,
Makes me insensible of remorse or pity,
Or the least sting of conscience.
Lov. I admire
The toughness of your nature. Over. 'Tis for you,
My lord, and for my daughter, I am marble.
THE PICTURE: A TRAGI-COMEDY,
BY PHILIP MASSINGER. MATTHIAS, a knight of Bohemia, going to the wars ; in parting with his wife, shows her substantial reasons why he should go.
Mat. Since we must part, Sophia, to pass
Is not alone impertinent, but dangerous.
We are not distant from the Turkish camp
Above five leagues; and who knows but some party
Of his Timariots, that scour the country,
May fall upon us ? Be now, as thy name
Truly interpreted' hath ever spoke thee,
Wise and discreet; and to thy understanding
Marry thy constant patience.
Soph. You put me, sir,
To the utmost trial of it.
Mat. Nay, no melting:
Since the necessity, that now separates us,
We have long since disputed; and the reasons,
Forcing me to it, too oft wash'd in tears.
I grant that
in birth were far above me, And great men my superiors rivals for you; But mutual consent of heart, as hands
1 Sophia; wisdom.
Join'd by true love, hath made us one and equal:
Nor is it in me mere desire of fame,
Or to be cried up by the public voice
For a brave soldier, that puts on my armour;
Such airy tumors take not me: you know
How narrow our demeans are; and what's more,
Having as yet no charge of children on us,
We hardly can subsist.
Soph. In you alone, sir,
I have all abundance.
Mat. For my mind's content,
In your own language I could answer you.
You have been an obedient wife, a right one;
And to my power, though short of your desert,
I have been ever an indulgent husband.
We have long enjoy'd the sweets of love, and though
Not to satiety or loathing, yet
We must not live such dotards on our pleasures,
As still to hug them to the certain loss
Of profit and preferment. Competent means
Maintains a quiet bed, want breeds dissension
Ev'n in good women.
Soph. Have you found in me, sir,
Any distaste or sign of discontent,
For want of what's superfluous ?
Mat. No, Sophia ;
Nor shalt thou ever have cause to repent
Thy constant course in goodness, if Heaven bless
My honest undertakings. 'Tis for thee,
That I turn soldier, and put forth, dearest,
Upon this sea of action as a factor,
To trade for rich materials to adorn
Thy noble parts, and show them in full lustre.
I blush that other ladies, less in beauty
And outward form, but, in the harmony
Of the soul's ravishing music, the same age
Not to be named with thee, should so outshine thee
In jewels and variety of wardrobes ;
While you, to whose sweet innocence both Indies
Compared are of no value, wanting these,
Soph. If I am so rich,
Or in your opinion so, why should you borrow
Addition for me?
Mat. Why? I should be censured
Of ignorance, possessing such a jewel,
Above all price, if I forbear to give it
The best of ornaments. Therefore, Sophia,
In few words know my pleasure, and obey me;
have ever done. To
I leave the government of my family,
And our poor fortunes, and from these command
Obedience to you as to myself:
To the utmost of what 's mine, live plentifully:
And, ere the remnant of our store be spent,
With my good sword I hope I shall reap for you
A harvest in such full abundance, as
Shall make a merry winter.
Soph. Since you are not
To be diverted, sir, from what you purpose,
All arguments to stay you here are useless.
Go when you please, sir. Eyes, I charge you, waste not
One drop of sorrow; look you hoard all up,
Till in my widow'd bed I call upon you:
But then be sure you fail not. You blest angels,
Guardians of human life, I at this instant
Forbear to invoke you at our parting; 'twere
To personate devotion. My soul
Shall go along with you; and when you are
Circled with death and horror, seek and find you;
And then I will not leave a saint unsued to
For your protection. To tell you what
I will do in your absence, would show poorly;
My actions shall speak me. 'Twere to doubt you,
To beg I may hear from you where you are ;
You cannot live obscure: nor shall one post,
By night or day, pass unexamined by me.
If I dwell long upon your lips, consider
After this feast the griping fast that follows;
And it will be excusable; pray, turn from me;
All that I can is spoken. [The good sense, rational fondness, and chastised feeling, of this dialogue, make it more valuable than many of those scenes in which this writer has attempted a deeper passion and more tragical interest. Mas.
singer had not the higher requisites of his art in any thing like the degree in which they were possessed by Ford, Webster, Tourneur, Heywood, and others. He never shakes or disturbs the mind with grief. He is read with composure and placid delight. He wrote with that equability of all the passions, which made his English style the purest and most free from violent metaphors and harsh constructions, of any of the dramatists who were his contemporaries.]
THE PARLIAMENT OF LOVE: A COMEDY,
BY PHILIP MASSINGER.
CLEREMOND takes an oath to perform his mistress LEONORA's pleasure.
She enjoins him to kill his best friend. He invites MONTROSE to the field, under pretence of wanting him for a second : then shows, that he must fight with him. Cler. This is the place. Mont. An even piece of ground,
Without advantage; but be jocund, friend:
The honour to have enter'd first the field,
However we come off, is ours.
Cler. I need not,
So well I am acquainted with your valour,'
To dare, in a good cause, as much as man,
Lend you encouragement; and should I add,
Your power to do, which Fortune, howe'er blind,
Hath ever seconded, I cannot doubt
But victory still sits upon your sword,
And must not now forsake you.
Mont. You shall see me
Come boldly up: nor will I shame your cause,
By parting with an inch of ground not bought
With blood on my part.
Cler. 'Tis not to be question’d:
That which I would entreat, (and pray you grant it,)
Is, that you would forget your usual softness,
Your foe being at your mercy; it hath been
A custom in you, which I dare not praise,
Having disarm’d your enemy of his sword,
To tempt your fate, by yielding it again;
Then run a second hazard.
Mont. When we encounter
A noble foe, we cannot be too noble.