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Massinger was joint author with Decker, of the play from which the scene of the lady and the angel is taken; but nobody who knows the style of the two men can doubt for a moment to which it belongs. I have, therefore, without hesitation assigned it according to the opinion expressed by Mr. Lamb.
FLIGHT OF WITCHES.
Scene, a Field. Enter HECATE, STADLIN, HOPPo, and other Witches.
FIRESTONE in the background.
Hec. The moon's a gallant ; see how brisk she rides !
Ay, is 't not, wenches,
O’t will be precious !
Briefly in the copse,
'T is high time for us then
You are fortunate still;
Prepare to flight then;
Hie thee, Hecate;
I'll reach you quickly.
[Exeunt all the Witches except HECATE. Fire. They are all going a birding to-night: they talk of fowls i' th' air hat fly by day; I am sure they'll be a company of foul sluts there to-night: if we have not mortality after 't, I 'll be hanged, for they are able to putrefy it, to infect a whole region. She spies me now.
Hec. What, Firestone, our sweet son ?
[Aside. Hec. How much hast here?
Nineteen, and all brave plump ones, besides six lizards and three serpentine eggs.
Hec. Dear and sweet boy! what herbs hast thou ?
Fire. Here's panax too-I thank thee-my pan aches I'm sure, with kneeling down to cut 'em. Hec.
Every blade of 'em,
Hie thee home with 'em :
Fire. Aloft, quoth you? I would you would break your neck once, that I might have all quickly! [Aside.]-Hark, hark, mother! they are above the steeple already, flying over your head with a noise of musicians.
Hec. They ’re they indeed. Help, help me; I'm too late else.
Come away, come away,
Hecate, Hecate, come away.
I come, I
come, With all the speed I may.
Where's Stadlin ?
Come away, make up the count.
[.A spirit like a cat descends. (Voice above.] There's one comes down to fetch his dues,
A kiss, a coll, a sip of blood;
Since the air 's so sweet and good ?
Either come, or else refuse.
Hec. Now I'm furnished for the flight.
Malkin my sweet spirit and I.
To ride in the air
When the moon shines fair,
Or cannon's throat our height can reach. [Voice above.] No ring of bells, &c.
Fire. Well, mother, I thank your kindness: you must be gambolling i’ th' air, and leave me to walk here, like a fool and a mortal.
THE CHRISTIAN LADY AND THE ANGEL.
An ANGEL, in the guise of a Page, attends on DOROTHEA.
Dor. My book and taper
Here, most holy mistress.
Ang. No, my dear lady ; I could weary stars,
Be nigh me still then.
This little, pretty body, when I, coming
Ang. Proud am I, that my lady's modest eye
I have offer'd
I am not: I did never
O blessed day!
DOROTHEA is executed ; and the ANGEL visits THEOPHILUS, the Judge
that condemned her.
This Christian slut was well,
Are you amazed, sir ?
Theoph. How cam’st thou in? to whom thy business?
Ang. To you.
Whither she knew she went, and where, now happy,
Theoph. Cannot I see this garden?
Yes, if the master
(He vanishes.) Theoph.
'Tis a tempting fruit,
Both. My lord.
Saw you not
Theoph. Here he enter'd, a young lad;
Geta. No, sir.
A fine sweet earthquake, gently mov'd