« FöregåendeFortsätt »
A scimitar. This, and of solid gold
Pho. Where is the treasure of my soul ! Ten ingots, be the price to buy your absence.
Eudocia, Cal. This, and much more, even all your shi- Behold me here impatient, like the miser ning wealth,
That often steals in secret to his gold, Will soon be ours: look round your Syrian fron- And counts with trembling joy, and jealous transtiers !
port, See in how many towns our hoisted flags The shining heaps which he still fears to lose. Are waving in the wind; Sachna, and llawran, Eud. Welcome, thou brave, thou best deserProud Tadmor, Aracah, and stubborn Bosra
ving lover! Have bowed beneath the yoke-behold our march How do I doubly share the common safety, O'er half your land, like fame through fields of Since 'tis a debt to thee !-But tell me, Phocyas, harvest.
Dost thou bring peace ?—Thou dost, and I am And last view Aiznadin, that vale of blood !
happy! There seek the souls of forty thousand Greeks, Pho. Not yet, Eudocia; 'tis decreed by Heaven That, fresh from life, yet hover o'er their bodies. I must do more to merit thy esteem. Then think, and then resolve.
Peace, like a frighted dove, has winged her flight Herb. Presumptuous men!
To distant hills, beyond these hostile tents; What though you yet can boast successful guilt, And through them we must thither force our way, Is conquest only your's? Or dare you hope If we would call the lovely wanderer back That you shall still pour on the swelling tide, To her forsaken home. Like some proud river that has left its banks, Eud. False Hattering hope ! Nor ever know repulse ?
Vanished so soon !-alas, my
faithful fears Eum. Have you forgot !
Return, and tell nie, we must still be wretched ! Not twice seven years are past since e'en your Pho. Not so, my fair; if thou but gently smile, prophet,
Inspiring valour, and presaging conquest, Bold as he was, and boasting aid divine, These barbarous foes to peace and love shall soon Was by the tribe of Corish forced to fly, Be chased, like fiends before the morning light, Poorly to fly, to save his wretched life,
And all be calm again. From Mecca to Medina.
Eud. Is the truce ended ? Abu. No-forgot!
Must war, alas! renew its bloody rage, We well remember how Medina screened And Phocyas ever be exposed to danger? That holy head, preserved for better days, Pho. Think for whose sake danger itself has And ripening years of glory!
charms. Dar. Why, my chiefs,
Dismiss thy fears; the lucky hour comes on, Will you waste time in offering terms despised Full fraught with joys, when my big soul no more To these idolaters ? _Words are but air; Shall labour with this secret of my passion, Blows would plead better.
To hide it from thy jealous father's eyes. Cal. Daran, thou say'st true.
Just now, by signals from the plain, I've learned Christians, here end our truce. Behold once That the proud foe refuse us terms of honour;
A sally is resolved; the citizens The sword of heaven is drawn ! nor shall be And soldiers, kindled into sudden fury, sheathed
in crowds, and beg I'll lead them on. But in the bowels of Damascus.
Oh, my Eudocia ! if I now succeedEum. That,
Did I say if I must, I will; the cause Or speedy vengeance, and destruction due Is love, 'tis liberty, it is Eudocia ! To the proud menacers, as Heaven sees fit! What then shall hinder, since our mutual faith
(Ereunt. Is pledged, and thou consenting to my bliss, SCENE III.- A Garden.
But I may boldly ask thee of Eumenes,
Nor fear a rival's more prevailing claim?
Eud. May blessings still attend thy arms ! Eud. All is hushed around -No more the Methinks shout of soldiers
I've caught the flame of thy heroic ardour ! And clash of arms tumultuous fill the air. And now I see thee crowned with palm and olive; Methinks this interval of terror seems
The soldiers bring thee back with songs of triumph Like that, when the loud thunder just has rolled And loud applauding shouts; thy rescued country O'er our affrighted heads, and in the heavens Resounds thy praise; our emperor lleraclius A momentary silence but prepares
Decrees thee honours for a city saved, A second and a louder clap to follow.
And pillars rise, of monumental brass,
Inscribed - To Phocyas the deliverer.
Pho. The honours and rewards, which thou 0 comes, with better omens,
hast named, And every gloomy thought is now no more. Are bribes too little for my vast ambition.
My soul is full of thee !
-Thou art my all Pho. Forgive me, thou fair pattern of all goodOf' fame, of triumph, and of future fortune.
ness, 'Twas love of thee first sent me forth in arms, If in the transport of unbounded passion, My service is all thine, to thee devoted,
I still am lost to every thought but thee; And thou alone canst make e'en conquest plea- Yet sure to love thee thus is every virtue; sing
Nor need I more perfection.—Hark! I'm called. Eud. O, do not wrong thy merit, nor restrain it
[Trumpet sounds. To narrow bounds; but know, I best am pleased Eud. Then go and Heaven with all its angels To share thee with thy country. Oh, my Pho
guard thee! cyas !
Pho. Farewell !—for thee once more I draw With conscious blushes oft I've heard thy vows,
the sword. And strove to hide, yet more revealed my heart; Now to the field to gain the glorious prize; But 'tis thy virtue justifies my choice,
'Tis victory—the word-Eudocia's eyes ! And what at first was weakness, now is glory.
SCENE I.-The Governor's Paluce.
Eum. I know thy friendly fears; that thou and I
Must stoop beneath a beardless rising hero; Enter EUMENES and HERBIS.
And in Heraclius' court it shall be said, Herb. Still I must say, 'twas wrong, 'twas Damascus, nay perhaps the empire too, wrong, Eumenes,
Owed its deliverance to a boy. Why, be it, And mark the event!
So that he now return with victory; Eum. What could I less? You saw
'Tis honour greatly won, and let him wear it. 'Twas vain to oppose it, whilst his
Yet I could wish I needed less his service. Impatient of restraint
Were Eutyches returnedHerb. His eager valour!
Herb. [Aside.] That, that's my torture. Flis rashness, his hot youth, his valour's fever! I sent my son to the emperor's court, in hopes Must we, whose business is to keep our walls, His merit at this time might raise his fortunes; And manage warily our little strength,
But Phocyas-curse upon his forward virtues !! Must we at once lavish away our blood,
Is reaping all this field of fame alone, Because his pulse beats high, and his mad cou- Or leaves him scarce the gleanings of a harvest. rage
Eum. See, Artamon with hasty strides returnWants to be breathed in some new enterprize?
- ing. You should not have consented.
He comes alone !-O friend, thy fears were just. Eum. You forget.
What are we now, and what is lost Damascus! 'Twas not my voice alone; you saw the people
Enter ARTAMON. (And sure such sudden instincts are from Heaven!)
Art. Joy to Eumenes! Rose all at once to follow him, as if
Eum. Joy! is it possible? One soul inspired them, and that soul was Pho- Dost thou bring news of victory? cvas'.
Art. The sun Herb. I had indeed forgot; and ask your par- Is set in blood, and from the western skies don.
Has seen three thousand slaughtered Arabs fall. I took you for Eumenes, and I thought
Herb. Is Phocyas safe?
Herb. [Aside.] My fears indeed were just. Herb. Nay, who's forgetful now?
Shout, A Phocyas ! A Phocyas! You say, the people-Yes, that very people, Eum. What noise is that? That coward tribe that pressed you to surrender! Herb. The people worshipping their new diriWell may they spurn at lost authority;
nity. Whom they like better, better they'll obey. Shortly they'll build him temples. Eum. Ó I could curse the giddy changeful Eum. Tell us, soldier, slaves,
Since thou hast shared the glory of this action, But that the thought of this great hour's event Tell us how it began. Possesses all my soul. If we are beaten! Art. At first the foe Herb. The poison works; 'tis well—I'll give Seemed much surprised; but, taking soon the him more.
Aside. alarm, True, if we're beaten, who shall answer that? Gathered some hasty troops, and marched to Shall you, or I ?-Are you the governor?
meet us. Or say we conquer, whose is then the praise ? The captain of these bands looked wild and fierce, His head unarmed, as if in scorn of danger,
Eum. Ha! from Eutyches. And naked to the waist; as he drew near, [Reads.] • The emperor, awakened with the danHe raised his arın, and shook a ponderous lance; ger, When all at once, as at a signal given,
* That threatens his dominions, and the loss We heard the Tecbir, so these Arabs call • At Aiznadin, has drained his garrisons Their shouts of onset, when with loud appeal • To raise a second army. In few hours They challenge Heaven, as if demanding con- • We will begin our march. Sergius brings this, quest.
• And will inform you further.'The battle joined, and through the barbarous Herb. [Aside.] İcaven, I thank thee! host,
'Twas even beyond my hopes. Fight, fight, and paradise ! was all the cry. Eum. But where is Sergius? At last our leaders met; and gallant Phocyas Mess. The letter, fastened to an arrow's head, But what are words to tell the nighty wonders
Was shot into the town. We saw him then perform - Their chief un- Eum. I fear he's takenhorsed,
O Phocyas, Herbis, Artamon! my friends! The Saracens soon broke their ranks and Aed; You all are sharers in this news: the storm And had not a thick evening fog arose,
Is blowing o'er, that hung like night upon us, (Which sure the devil raised up to save his And threatened deadly ruin--Haste, proclaim friends)
The welcome tidings loud through all thic city. The slaughter had been double- -But, be- Let sparkling lights be seen from every turret, hold!
To tell our joy, and spread their blaze to heaven. The hero comes.
Prepare for feasts; danger shall wait at distance,
And fear be now no more. The jolly soldier Enter ProcyAS, EUMENES meeting him. And citizens shall mect o'er their full bowls, Eum. Joy to brave Phocyas !
Forget their toils, and laugh their cares away, Eumenes gives him back the joy he sent. And mirth and triumphs close this happy day. The welcome news has reached this place before
[Ereunt Herb. and Art, thee.
Pho. And may succeeding days prove yet more How shall thy country pay the debt she owes happy! thee?
Well dost thou bid the voice of triumph sound Pho. By taking this as earnest of a debt Through all our streets; our city calls thce faWhich I owe her, and fain would better pay.
ther; Her. In spite of envy I must praise him too. And say, Eumenes, dost thou not perceive
[ Aside. A father's transport rise within thy breast, Phocyas, thou hast done bravely, and 'tis fit Whilst in this act thou art the band of Heaven, Successful virtue take a time to rest.
To deal forth blessings, and distribute joy? Fortune is fickle, and may change; besides, Eum. The blessings Heaven bestows are freely What shall we gain, if from a inighty ocean
sent, By sluices we draw off some little streams? And should be frecly shared. If thousands fall, ten thousands more remain; Pho. True-Generous minds Nor ought we hazard worth so great as thine Redoubled feel the pleasures they impart. Against such odds. Suffice what's done already: For me, if I'vc deserved by arms or counsels, And let us now, in hopes of better days, By hazards gladly sought, and greatly prospered, Keep wary watch, and wait the expected succours. Whate'er I've added to the public stock, Pho. What to be cooped whole months With joy I see it in Eumenes' hands, within our walls?
And wish but to receive my share from thee. To rust at home, and sicken with inaction?
Eum. I cannot, if I would, withhold thy share. The courage of our men will droop and die, What thou hast done is thine, the fame thy own; If not kept up by daily exercise.
And virtuous actions will reward themselves. Again the beaten foe may force our gates;
Pho. Fame-What is that, if courted for herAnd victory, if slighted thus, take wing,
self? And fly where she may find a better welcome. Less than a vision; a mere sound, an echo, Art. [Aside.), It must be so-he hates him, on That calls, with mimic voice, through woods and my soul!
labyrinths, This Herbis is a foul old envious knave.
Her cheated lovers; lost and heard by fits, Methinks Eumenes too might better thank him. But rever tixed: a seeming nymph, yet nothing,
Eum. (To Herbis aside.) Urge him no more;- Virtue ideed is a substantial good, I'll think of thy late warning;
A real beauty: yet with weary steps And thou shalt see I'll yet be governor.
Through rugged ways, by long, laborious service,
When we have traced, and wooed, and won the A letter brought in.
dame, Pho. (Looking on it.] 'Tis to Eumenes. May we not then expect the dower she brings
Eum. Well-ask that dowry; say, can Da- | To be a very tame obedient father. mascus pay it?
Thou hast already taught my child her duty. Her riches shall be taxed : name but the
sum, I find the source of all her disobedience, Her merchants with some costly gems shall grace Her hate of me, her scorn of Eutyches; thee;
Ha! Is it not so !- -Come, tell me? I'll forgive Nor can Heraclius fail to grant thee honours,
thee : Proportioned to thy birth and thy desert. Hast thou not found her a most ready scholar? Pho. And can Eumenes think I would be I know thou hast. Why, what a dull old wretch bribed
Was I, to think I ever had a daughter! By trash, by sordid gold, to venal virtue?
Pho. I am sorry that Eumenes thinksWhat! serve my country for the same mean hire, Eum. Nosorry! That can corrupt each villain to betray her? Sorry for what? Then thou dost own thou'st Why is she saved from the Arabian spoilers,
wronged me! If to be stripped by her own sons?-Forgive me That's somewhat yet_Curse on my stupid blind If the thought glows on my cheeks! I know
ness! 'Twas mentioned, but to prove how much I For had I eyes I might have seen it sooner. scorn it.
Was this the spring of thy romantic bravery, As for the emperor, if he owns my conduct, Thy boastful merit, thy officious service? I shall indulge an honest pride in honours
Pho. It was—with pride I own it-—'twas EuWhich I have strove to merit. Yes, Eumenes,
docia, I have ambition- -yet the vast reward, I have served thee in serving her, thou knowest That swells my hopes, and equals all my wishes, it, Is in thy gift alone -it is Eudocia.
And thought I might have found a better treatEum. Eudocia ! Phocyus, I am yet thy friend, ment. And therefore will not hold thee long in doubt. Why wilt thou force me thus to be a braggart, Thou must not think of her.
And tell thee that which thou shouldst tell thyPho. Not think of her?
self? Impossible ! She's ever present to me,
It grates my soul-I am not wont to talk thus. My life, my soul! She animates my being, But I recall my words I have done nothing, And kindles up my thoughts to worthy actions. And would disclaim all merit, but my love. And why, Eumenes, why not think of her? Eum. O no-say on, that thou hast saved DaIs not my rank
mascus ; Eum. Forbear-What need a herald Is it not so? Look o'er her battlements, To tell me who thou art? Yet once again, See if the flying foe have left their camp! Since thou wilt force me to a repetition, Why are our gates yet closed, if thou hast freed us? I say, thou must not think of her.
'Tis true, thou'st fought a skirmish–What of that? Pho. Yet hear me;
Had Eutyches been presentWhy wilt thou judge, ere I can plead my cause? Pho. Eutyches ! É um. Why wilt thou plead in vain ? hast thou Why wilt thou urge my temper with that trifler? not heard
O let him corne ! that in yon spacious plain My choice has destined her to Eutyches ! We may together charge the thickest ranks,
Pho. And has she consented to that choice? Rush on to battle, wou and glorious death, Eum. Has she consented! What is her con- And prove who it was that best deserved Eusent?
docia, Is she not mine?
Eum. That will be seen ere long-But since I Pho. She is and in that title
find Even kings with envy inay behold thy wealth, Thơu arrogantly would'st usurp dominion, And think their kingdoms poor! and yet, Eu- Believest thyself the guardian genius here, menes,
And that our fortunes hang upon thy sword; Shall she, by being thine, be barred a privilege Be that first tried-for know, that from this. Which even the meanest of her sex may claim? Thou wilt not force her?
Thou here hast no command-Farewell !-Sa Eum. Who has told thee so?
stay, I would force her to be happy.
Or hence and join the foethou hast thy choice, Pho. Thou canst not.
[Exit Eumenes. What happiness subsists in loss of freedom? Pho. Spurned and degraded !-Proud, unThe guest, constrained, but murmurs at the ban- grateful man ! quet;
Am I a bubble then, blown up by thee, Nor thanks his host, but starves amidst abun- And tossed into the air to make thee sport? dance.
Hence to the foe! 'Tis well-Eudocia, Eum. 'Tis well, young man-Why then, I'll Oh, I will see thee, thou wronged excellence! learn from thee
But how to speak thy wrongs, or my disgrace
Impossible! Oh, rather let me walk
But I have done and now thou hast my story, Like a dumb ghost, and burst my heart in silence. Is there a creature so accurst as Phocyas?
[Erit. Eud. And can it be? Is this then thy reward?
O Phocyas ! never wouldst thou tell me yet SCENE II.-The Garden.
That thou hadst wounds; now I must feel them
too. Enter EUDOCIA.
For is it not for me that thou hast borne this? Eud. Why must we meet by stealth, like guil- What else could be thy crime ?-Wert thou a ty lovers!
traitor, But 'twill not long be so-What joy it will be Had'st thou betrayed us, sold us to the foeTo own my hero in his ripened honours,
Pho. Would I be yet a traitor, I have leave; And hear applauding crowds pronounce me blest! Nay, I am dared to it with mocking scorn. Sure he'll be here--See the fair rising moon, My crime indeed was asking thee; that only Ere day's remaining twilight scarce is spent, Has cancelled all, if I had any merit! Hangs up her rcady lamp, and with mild lustre The city now is safe, my service slighted, Drives back the hovering shade! Come, Phocy- And I discarded, like an useless thing, as, come;
Nay, bid begone- -and, if I like that better, This gentle season is a friend to love;
Seek out new friends, and join yon barbarous And now, methinks, I could with equal passion,
host. Meet thine, and tell thee all my secret soul. Eud. Hold-let me think a while
[Walks aside. Enter PhocyAS.
Though my heart bleed, He hears me- O my Phocyas !-What-not an- I would not have him see these dropping tearsswer!
And wilt thou go, then, Phocyas ?
Pho. To my grave;
Where can I bury else this foul disgrace?
It is from thec, thou only joy of life! Pho. And never can be thine!
And death will then be welcome. It will have vent--O barbarous, cursed—but Eud. Art thou sure hold
Thou hast been used thus? Art thou quite undone? I had forgot-it was Eudocia's father !
Pho. Yes, very sure
-What dost thou meav? 0, could I too forget how he has used me! Eud. That then, it is a time for me-0, Eud. I fear to ask thee
Heaven ! that I Pho. Dost thou fear - Alas,
Alone am grateful to this wondrous man! Then thou wilt pity me
- generous maid ! To own thee, Phocyas, thus-[Giving her hand.) Thou bast charmed down the rage that swelled nay, glory in thee, my heart,
And show, without a blush, how much I love. And choaked my voice-now I can speak to thee. We must not partAnd yet 'tis worse than death what I have suf- Pho. Then I am rich again! [Embracing her. fered ;
O, no--we will not part ! Confirm it, Heaven ! It is the death of honour! Yet that's little ; Now thou shalt see how I will bend my spirit, 'Tis more, Eudocia, 'tis the loss of thee! With what soft patience I will bear my wrongs, Eud. Hast thou not conquered? What are all | Till I have wearied out thy father's scorn. these shouts,
Yet I have worse to tell thee-EutychesThis voice of general joy, heard far around ? Eud. Why wilt thou name him? What are these fires, that cast their glimmering Pho. Now, even now, he's coming! light
Just hovering o'er thee, like a bird of prey. Against the sky? Are not all these thy triumphs? Thy father vows--for I must tell thee allPho. O name not triumph! Talk no more of 'Twas this that wrung my heart, and racked my conquest !
brain, It is indeed a night of general joy,
Even to distraction vows thee to his bed; But not to me! Eudocia, I am come
Nay, threatened force, if thou refuse obedience. To take a last farewell of thee for ever.
Eud. Force! threatened force! my fatherEud. A last farewell!
where is nature ? Pho. Yes; How wilt thou hereafter Is that, too, banished from his heart !-0 then Look on a wretch despised, reviled, cashiered, I have no father-How have I deserved this? Stript of command, like a base beaten coward ?
[Weeping Thy cruel father I have told too much ; No home, but am henceforth an out-cast orphan; I should not, but for this, have felt the wounds For I will wander to earth's utmost bounds, I got in fight for him now, now they bleed. Ere give my band to that detested contract,