Sidor som bilder

J. Sho. - For pity let me go

Hast. Avaunt! Base groom
At distance wait, and know thy oflice better.

Dum. No, my Lord--
The common ties of manhood call me now,
And bid me thus stand up in the defence
Of an oppress'd, unhappy, helpless woman,

Hust. And dost thou know me, slave?

Dum. Yes, thou proud Lord! I know thee well, know thee with each advantage Which wealth, or power, or noble birth can give thee. I know thee, too, for one who stains those honours, And blots a long illustrious line of ancestry, By poorly daring thus to wrong a woman.

Hast. 'Tis wond'rous well! I see, my saint-like dame, You stand provided of your braves and ruffians, To man your cause, and bluster in your brothel.

Dum. Take back the foul reproach, unmanner'd Nor urge my rage too far, lest thou should'st find [railer! I have as daring spirits in my blood As thou, or any of thy race e'er boasted; And tho' no gaudy titles grac'd my birth, Hast. Insolent villain! henceforth let this teach thee,

. [Draws and strikes him. The distance 'twixt a peasant and a prince. Dum. Nay, then, my Lord! (drawing.] learn you

by this, how well An arm iesolv'd can guard its master's life.

[They fight. J. Sho. Oh my distracting fears! hold, for sweet


[They fight, Dumont disarms Lord Hastings. Hast. Confusion! baffled by a base-born hind! · Dum. Now, haughty Sir, where is our difference now?

Your life is in my hand, and did not something,
Of which the highest need not be asham'd,
(How'er unworthy I may seem to you)
Plead in my bosom, I should take the forfeit.
But wear your sword again; and, know, a Lord.
Oppos’d against a man is but a man.

Hast. Whence is my failing hand! And what is it
Has given you 'vantage o'er me? but perhaps
Your triumph may be bought with dear repentance.

[Exit. J. Sho. Alas; what have you done? know you the The mightiness that waits upon this Lord ? (power,

Dun. Fear not, my worthiest mistress; 'tis a cause, In which Heaven's guard will wait you. O pursue, Pursue the sacred counsels of your soul, Which urge you on to virtue; let not danger, Nor the incumbring world, make faint your purpose. Assisting Angels will conduct your steps, Bring you to bliss, and crown your end with peace.

J. Sho. O that my head were laid, my sad eyes clos'd,
And my cold corse wound in my shroud to rest!
My painful heart will never cease to beat,
Will never know a moment's peace till then.

Dum. Would you be happy, leave this fatal place,
Fly from the court's pernicious neighbourhood;
Where innocence is sham’d, and blushing modesty
Is made the scorner's jest; where hate, deceit,
And deadly ruin, wear the masques of beauty,
And draw deluded fools with shows of pleasure.

J. Sho. Where should I fly, thus helpless and forlorn, Of friends, and all the means of life bereft?

Dum. Belmour, whose friendly care still wakes to. Has found you out a little peaceful refuge, [serve you, Far from the court and the tumultuous city. Within an ancient forest's ample verge, There stands a lonely, but a healthful dwelling, Built for convenience, and the use of life: Around it fallows, meads, and pastures fair, A little garden, and a limpid brook, By nature's own contrivance seem dispos'd; No neighbours, but a few poor simple clowns, Honest and true, with a well-meaning Priest: No faction or domestick fury's rage, Did e'er disturb the quiet of that place, When the contending nobles shook the land With York and Lancaster's. disputed sway.

Your virtue there may find a safe retreat
From the insulting powers of wicked greatness.

J. Sho. Can there be so much happiness in store:
A cell like that is all my hopes aspire to.
Haste, then, and thither let us take our flight,
Ere the clouds gather, and the wintry sky
Descends in storms to intercept our passage.*,

Dum. Will you then go? You glad my very soul!
- Panish your fears, commit yourself to me;
Plenty, and ease, and peace of mind shall wait you,
And make your latter days of life most happy.
Oh, lady! but I must not, cannot tell you,
How anxious I have been for all your dangers,
And how my heart rejoices at your safety.
So, when the spring renews the flowery field,
And warns the pregnant nightingale to build,
She seeks the safest shelter of the wood,
Where she may trust her little tuneful brood;
Where no rude swains her shady cell may know,
No serpents climb, nor blasting winds may blow;
Fond of the chosen place, she views it o'er,
Sits there, and wanders thro' the grove no more:
Warbling she charms it each returning night,
And loves it with a mother's dear delight. [Exeunt.

SCENE the Court.t

Enter Alicia with a paper.
Alic. This paper, to the great Protector's hand,
With care and secrecy must be convey'd;

* " And I said, Oh, that I had wings like a dove, for then would " I tlee away and he at rist. Lo, then would I get me away afar * oil, and reinain in the wilderness. I would make haste to escape, “ because of the storing wind and tempest." Psalm Ly. 6-8.

+ At the Tower, See A.J. S.I.

His bold ambition now avows its aim
To pluck the crown from Edward's infant brow,
And fix it on his own. I know he holds
My faithless Hastings, adverse to his hopes,
And much devoted to the orphan King;
On that I build: This paper meets his doubts,
And marks my hated rival as the cause i
Of Hastings' zeal for his dead master's sons.
Oh jealousy! thou bane of pleasing friendship,
“Thou dire invader of our tender bosoms;'
How does thy rancour poison all our softness,
And turn our gentle natures into bitterness?
See where she comes! Once my heart's dearest blessing,
Now my chang’d eyes are blasted with her beauty,
Loath that known face, and sicken to behold her.

J. Sho. 6 Now whither shall I fly, to find relief?
What charitable hand will aid me now?
" Will stay my failing steps, support my ruins,
• And heal my wounded mind with balmy comfort
Oh, my Alicia!

Alic. What new grief is this?
What unforeseen misfortune has surpris'd thee,
That racks thy tender heart thus?
J. Sho. Oh! Dumont!
Alic. Say? what of him?

J. Sho. That friendly, honest man,
Whom Belmour brought of late to my assistance,
On whose kind cares, whose diligence and faith;
My surest trust was built, this very morn
Was seiz'd on by the cruel hand of power,
Forc'd from my house, and born away to prison.

Alic. To prison, said you! can you guess the cause?

J. Sho. Too well, I fear. His bold defence of me, Has drawn the vengeance of Lord Hastings on him.

Alic. Lord Hastings! ha!

J. Sho. Some fitter time must tell thee
The tale of my hard hap. Upon the present
Hang all my poor, my last remaining hopes.
Within this paper is my suit contain'd; . i

Here, as the princely Gloster passes forth,
I wait to give it on my humble knees,
And move him for redress.

[She gives the paper to Alicia, who opens

and seems to read it.
Alic. [ Aside] Now for a wile,
To sting my thoughtless rival to the heart;
To blast her fatal beauties, and divide her
For ever from my perjur'd Hastings' eyes:
The wanderer may then look back to me,
And turn to his forsaken home again:
Their fashions are the same, it cannot fail.

[Pulling out the other paper. J. Sho. But, see, the great protector comes this way, 5 Attended by a train of waiting courtiers.' Give me the paper, friend. Alic. [ Aside] For love and vengeance!

[She gives her the other paper. Enter the Duke of Gloster, Sir Richard RATCLIFTE, Sir William CATESBY, Courtiers, and other attendants.

J. Sho. [Kneeling.] O noble Gloster, turn thy graIncline thy pitying ear to my complaint. [cious eye, A poor, undone, forsaken, helpless woman, Intreats a little bread for charity, To feed her wants, and save her life from perishing. Glos. Arise, fair dame, and dry your wat ry eyes.

[Receiving the paper and raising her. It were no sign of pity in his heart, That could refuse a boon to such a suitress. You've got a noble friend to be your advocate; A worthy and right-gentle Lord he is, And to his trust most true. This present now, Some matters of the state detain our leisure; These once dispatch’d, we'll call for you anon, And give your griefs redress. Go to, be comforted. J. Sho. Good Heav'n repay your Highness for this

[pity And show'r down blessings on your princely head. Come, my Alicia, reach thy friendly arm,

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