« AnteriorContinua »
Swearing by all those powers which thou hast violated,
Never from this curs’d hour to hold communion,
Friendship, or interest with thee, tho' our years
Were to exceed those limited the world,
Take it-Farewel, for now I owe thee nothing.
JAFT. Say thou wilt live then.
Prer. For my life, dispose of it
Just as thou wilt, because 'tis what I'm tir'd with,
JAEF. Oh Pierre !
Pier. No more.
JAFF. My eyes won't loose the fight of thee,
But languish after thine, and ache with gazing.
Pier. Leave me-Nay, then thus, thus I throw thee
And curses, great as is thy falsehood, catch thee.
с н А Р. XI. Ꭼ E DWARD
W A R WIC K.
Edw. ET me have no intruders ; above all,
Keep Warwick from my sight
War. Behold him here;
No weicome guest, it seems, unless I aik
My lord of Suffolk's leave—there was a time
When Warwick wanted not his aid to gain
Edw. There was a time, perhaps,
When Warwick more desir'd, and more-desery'd it.
WAR. Never; I've been a foolish faithful lave;
All my best years, the morning of my life,
Hath been devoted to your service: what
Are now the fruits ? Disgrace and infamy;
My spotless name, which never yet the breath
Of calumny had tainted, made the mock
For foreign fools to carp at: but 'tis fit
Who truft in princes, should be thus rewarded.
EDW. I thought, my lord, I had full well repay'd
Your services with honours, wealth, and pow'r
Unlimited: thy all-directing hand
Guided in secret ev'ry latent wheel
Of government, and mov'd the whole machine :
Warwick was all in all, and pow'rless Edward
Stood like a cypher in the great account.
War. Who gave that cypher worth, and seated the
On England's throne? Thy undistinguish'd name
Had rotted in the duft from whence it sprang,
And moulder'd in oblivion, had not Warwick
Dug from its sordid mine the useless ore,
And stamp'd it with a diadem. Thou know'st
This wretched country, doom'd, perhaps, like Rome,
To fall by its own self-destroying hand,
Toft for so many years in the rough sea
Of civil discord, but for me had perilh'd.
In that distressful hour I seiz'd the helm,
Bade the rough waves subside in peace, and steerd
Your shatter'd vessel safe into the harbour.
You may despise, perhaps, that useless aid
Which you no longer want; but know, proud youth,
He who forgets a friend, deserves a foe.
Edw. Know too, reproach for benefits receiv'd
Pays ev'ry debt, and cancels obligation.
War. Why, that indeed is frugal honesty,
A thrifty saving knowledge: when the debt
Grows burdensome, and cannot be discharg'd,
A spunge will wipe out all, and cost you nothing.
Edw. When you have counted o’er the numerous train
Of mighty gifts your bounty lavish'd on me,
You may remember next the injuries
Which I have done you; let me know them all,
And I will make you ample satisfaction.
War. Thou canst not; thou hast robb’d me of a jewel It is not in thy power to restore : I was the first, fall future annals say, That broke the sacred bond of public trust And mutual confidence; ambafiadors, In after times, mere instruments, perhaps, Of venal statesmen, shall recal my name To witness, that they want not an example, And plead my guilt, to fanctify their own.
Amidst the herd of mercenary slaves That haunt your court, cou'd none be found but Warwick, To be the shameless herald of a lie?
Edw. And wouldst thou turn the vile reproach on me?
If I have broke my faith, and stain’d the name
Of England, thank thy own pernicious counfels
That urg'd me to it, and extorted from me
A cold consent to what my heart abhorr’d.
WAR. I have been abus'd, insulted, and betray'd';
My injur'd honour cries aloud for vengeance,
Her wounds will never close!
Edw. These gusts of pasion,
Will but inflame them; if I have been right
Inform'd, my lord, besides these dang’rous scars
Of bleeding honour, you have other wounds
As deep, tho' not fo fatal : such perhaps
As none but fair Elizabeth can cure.
WAR. Elizabeth !
Edw. Nay, start not, I have cause
To wonder most: I little thought indeed
When Warwick told me I might learn to love,
He was himself so able to instruct me:
But I've discover'd all..
War. And so have I;
Too well I know thy breach of friendship there,
Thy fruitless base endeavours to supplant me.
Edw. I scorn it, Sir,-Elizabeth hath charms,
And I have equal right with you to admire them:
Nor see I ought so god-like in the form,
So all-commanding in the name of Warwick,
That he alone should revel in the charms
Of beauty, and monopolize perfection.
I knew not of
WAR. By Heav'n 'tis false!
You knew it all, and meanly took occafion,
Whilft I was busy'd in the noble office,
Your grace thought fit to honour me withal,
To tamper with a weak unguarded woman,
To bribe her passions high, and basely steal
A treasure which your kingdom could not purchase.
Edw. How know you that? But be it as it may,
I had a right, nor will I tamely yield
My claim to happiness, the privilege
To choose the partner of my throne and bed:
It is a branch of my prerogative.
WAR. Prerogative! what's that? the boaft of tyrants; A borrow'd jewel, glitt'ring in the crown
With specious lustre, lent but to betray.
You had it, sir, and hold it from the people.
Epw. And therefore do I prize it; I would guard
Their liberties, and they shall strengthen mine:
But when proud faction, and her rebel crew,
Insult their fov’reign, trample on his laws,
And bid defiance to his pow'r, the people
In justice to themselves, will then defend
His cause, and vindicate the rights they gave.
War. Go to your darling people, then ; for foon,
If I mistake not, 'twill be needful; try
Their boasted zeal, and see if one of them
Will dare to lift his arm up in
your cause, If I forbid them.
Edw. Is it so, my lord,
Then mark my words : I've been your slave too long,
And you have ruld me with a rod of iron ;
But henceforth know, proud peer, I am thy maker,
And will be fo: the king, who delegates
His pow'r to other's hands, but ill deserves
The crown he wears.
War. Look well then to your own;
It fits but loosely on your head; for know,
The man who injur'd Warwick, never pafs'd
Edw. Nor he who threaten'd Edward
You may repent it, Sir,---my guards there-seize
This traitor, and convey him to the Tow'r,
There let him learn obedience.
EARL OF WARWICK.