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What too would it avail him, if there were
A something pleading for him in my heart-
Still I must kill him.
Gor.

If your heart speak to you,
Follow its impulse. "Tis the voice of God.
Think you your fortunes will grow prosperous
Bedew'd with blood, his blood ? Believe it not !
. But. You know not. Ask not! Wherefore should it

happen, That the Swedes gain'd the victory, and hasten With such forc'd marches hitherward ? Fain would I Have given him to the Emperor's mercy.—Gordon! I do not wish his blood-But I must ransom The honour of my word—it lies in pledgeAnd he must die, or (passionately grasping Gordon's hand.)

Listen then, and know!
I am dishonour'd if the Duke escape us.

Gor. O! to save such a man-
But.

What!

It is worth
A sacrifice.-Come, friend ! be noble-minded !
Our own heart, and not other men's opinions,
Forms our true honour.
But. (with a cold and haughty air)

He is a
great lord,
This Duke-and I am but of mean importance.
This is what you would say? Wherein concerns it
The world at large, you mean to hint to me,
Whether the man of low extraction keeps
Or blemishes his honour-
So that the man of princely rank be sav'd.
We all do stamp our value on ourselves.
The price we challenge for ourselves is given us.

Gor.

There does not live on earth the man so station'd,
That I despise myself compar'd with him.
Man is made great or little by his own will ;
Because I am true to mine, therefore he dies.

Gor. I am endeavouring to move a rock.
Thou hadst a mother, yet no human feelings.
I cannot hinder you, but may some god
Rescue him from you!

[Exit Gordon.

Scene IX.

But. (alone) I treasur’d my good name all my life

long; The Duke has cheated me of life's best jewel, So that I blush before this poor weak Gordon ! He prizes above all his fealty ; His conscious soul accuses him of nothing; In opposition to his own soft heart He subjugates himself to an iron duty; Me in a weaker moment passion warp'd; I stand beside him, and must feel myself The worse man of the two. What, though the world Is ignorant of my purpos'd treason, yet One man does know it, and can prove it tooHigh-minded Piccolomini ! There lives the man who can dishonour me! This ignominy blood alone can cleanse! Duke Friedland, thou or I-Into my own hands Fortune delivers me-The dearest thing a man has is himself.

(The curtain drops.)

ACT IV.

Scene-Butler's Chamber.

SCENE I.

Butler, Major, and Geraldin.

But. Find me twelve strong dragoons, arm them with

pikes,
For there must be no firing-
Conceal them somewhere near the banquet-room,
And soon as the desert is serv'd up, rush all in
And cry-Who is loyal to the Emperor ?
I will overturn the table-while you attack
Illo and Tertsky, and despatch them both.
The castle-palace is well barr'd and guarded,
That no intelligence of this proceeding
May make its way to the Duke.-Go instantly;
Have you yet sent for Captain Devereux
And the Macdonald ?-
Ger.

They'll be here anon.

[Exit Geraldin. But. Here's no room for delay. The citizens Declare for him ; a dizzy drunken spirit Possesses the whole town. They see in the Duke A Prince of peace, a founder of new ages And golden times. Arms too have been given out By the town-council, and a hundred citizens Have volunteer'd themselves to stand on guard. Despatch then be the word. For enemies Threaten us from without and from within.

SCENE II.

Butler, Captain Devereux, and Macdonald.

Macd. Here we are, General.
Dev.

What's to be the watchword ?
But. Long.live the Emperor!
Both. (recoiling)

How ?
But.

Live the House of Austria ! Dev. Have we not sworn fidelity to Friedland ? Macd. Have we not march'd to this place to protect

him ?
But. Protect a traitor, and his country's enemy!

Dev. Why, yes ! in his name you administer'd
Our oath.
Macd.

And follow'd him yourself to Egra.
But. I did it the more surely to destroy him.
Dev. So, then!
Macd.

An alter'd case! But. (to Devereux)

Thou wretched man ! So easily leav'st thou thy oath and colours ?

Dev. The devil !-I but follow'd your example, If you could prove a villain, why not we? Macd. We've nought to do with thinking--that's your

business.
You are our General, and give out the orders ;
We follow you, tho' the track lead to hell.

But. (appeased) Good then! we know each other.
Macd.

I should hope so.
Dev. Soldiers of fortune are we-who bids most,
He has us.
Macd.

'Tis e'en so !

But.

Well, for the present
Ye must remain honest and faithful soldiers.

Dev. We wish no other.
But.

Aye, and make your fortunes.
Macd. That is still better.
But.

Listen!
Both,

We at nd.
But. It is the Emperor's will and ordinance
To seize the person of the Prince-Duke Friedland,
Alive or dead.
Dev.

It runs so in the letter.
Macd. Alive or dead-these were the very words.

But. And he shall be rewarded from the State
In land and gold, who proffers aid thereto.
Dev. Ay? That sounds well. The words sound always

well
That travel hither from the court. Yes ! yes !
We know already what court-words import.
A golden chain perhaps in sign of favour,
Or an old charger, or a parchment patent,
And such like.-The Prince-Duke
Macd.

Yes,
The Duke's a splendid paymaster.
But.

All over
With that, my friends! His lucky stars are set.

Macd. And is that certain ?
But.

You have my word for it.
Dev. His lucky fortunes all past by ?
But.

For ever.
He is as poor as we.
Macd.

As poor as we?
Dev. Macdonald, we'll desert him.
But.

We'll desert him ?
Full twenty thousand have done that already;

pays better.

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