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The love I dedicate to your Lordship is without end; whereof this pamphlet, without beginning, is but a superfluous moietya. The warrant I have of your honourable disposition, not the worth of my untutored lines, makes it assured of acceptance. What I have done is yours, what I have to do is yours; being part in all I have, devoted yours. Were my worth greater my duty would show greater: meantime, as it is, it is bound to your Lordship; to whom I wish long life, still lengthened with all happiness.
Your Lordship’s in all duty,
· Moiety. In 'Henry IV., Part I.' and in “Lear' Shakspere uses moiety as it is here used, meaning a portion, not a half.
LUCIUS TARQUINIUS (for his excessive pride surnamed Superbus), after he had caused his own father-in-law, Servius Tullius, to be cruelly murdered, and, contrary to the Roman laws and customs, not requiring or staying for the people's suffrages, had possessed himself of the kingdom, went, accompanied with his sons and other noblernen of Rome, to besiege Ardea. During which siege the principal men of the army meeting one evening at the tent of Sextus Tarquinius, the king's son, in their discourses after supper, every one commended the virtues of his own wife; among whom, Collatinus extolled the incomparable chastity of his wife Lucretia. In that pleasant humour they all posted to Rome; and intending, by their secret and sudden arrival, to make trial of that which every one had before avouched, only Collatinus finds his wife (though it were late in the night spinning amongst her maids: the other ladies were all found dancing and revel ling, or in several disports. Whereupon the noblemen yielded Collatinus the victory, and his wife the fame. At that time Sextus Tarquinius, being inflamed with Lucrece' beauty, yet smothering his passions for the present, departed with the rest back to the camp; from whence he shortly after privily withdrew himself, and was (according to his estate) royally entertained and lodged by Lucrece at Collatium. The same night he treacherously stealeth into her chamber, violently ravisheth her, and early in the morning speedeth away. Lucrece, in this lamentable plight, hastily despatcheth messengers, one to Rome for her father, another to the camp for Collatine. They came, the one accompanied with Junius Brutus, the other with Publius Valerius; and, finding Lucrece attired in mourning habit, demanded the cause of her sorrow. She, first taking an oath of them for her revenge, revealed the actor, and whole manner of his dealing, and withal suddenly stabbed herself. Which done, with one consent they all vowed to root out the whole hated family of the Tarquins; and bearing the dead body to Rome, Brutus acquainted the people with the doer and manner of the vile deed, with a bitter invective against the tyranny of the king: wherewith the people were so moved, that with one consent and a general acclamation the Tarquins were all exiled, and the state government changed from kings to consuls.
From the besieged Ardea all in post,
And girdle with embracing flames the waist
Of Collatine's fair love, Lucrece the chaste.
Where mortal stars, as bright as heaven's beauties,
With pure aspects did him peculiar duties.
In the possession of his beauteous mate;
That kings might be espoused to more fame,
But king nor peer to such a peerless dame.
Honour and beauty, in the owner's arms,
Beauty itself doth of itself persuade
Of that rich jewel he should keep unknown
From thievish ears, because it is his own?
That golden hap which their superiors want.
O rash false heat, wrapp'd in repentant cold,
Thy hasty spring still blasts, and ne'er grows old !
3 Done. The word is here used as in a previous passage of the 'Venus and Adonis:'
“Wasted, thaw'd, and done,
As mountain-snow melts with the mid-day sun." • Suggested-tempted.
• Blasts is here used as a verb neuter. It is so used in the poem ascribed to Raleigh, entitled "The Farewell:'
" Tell age it daily wasteth;
Tell honour how it alters;