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Young Norval, (Douglas)'
Scene, Lord Randolph's Castle at Balarmo in Scotland,
on the banks of the Carron.
Time, a day and part of the night.
DOUGL A S.
Enter Lady RANDOLPH.
Enter Lord RANDOLPH.
Lady Rand. Silent, alas! is he for whom I mourn: Childless, without memorial of his name, He only now in my remembrance lives. *6 This fatal day stirs my time-settled 'sorrow, 6 Troubles afresh the fountain of my heart.' Lord Rand. When was it pure of sadness! These
black weeds k Express the wonted colour of thy mind,
For ever dark and dismal. Seven long years • Are passid, since we were join'd by sacred ties: • Clouds all the while have hung upon thy brow, « Nor broke nor parted by one gleam of joy.' Time, that wears out the trace of deepest anguish, " As the sea smooths the prints made in the sand, Has past o'er thee in vain.
6 Lady Rand. If time to come
Should prove as ineffectual, yet, my Lord, ( Thou canst not blame me. When our Scottish youth 6 Vy'd with each other for my luckless love, . Oft I besought them, I implor'd them all ( Not to assail me with my father's aid, « Nor weakly blend their better hopes with mine, .
For melancholy had congeat'd my 'blood,
And froze affection in my chilly breast. • At last my Sire, rous'd with the base attempt
To force me from him, which thou rend'red'st vain, 6 To his own daughter bow'd his hoary head, 6 Besought me to commiserate his age, 6 And vow'd he should not, could not die in peace, < Unless he saw me wedded and secur'd
From violence and outrage. Then, my Lord!
In my extreme distress I call'd on thee, • Thee I bespake, profess'd my strong desire « To lead a single solitary life,
And begg'd thy Nobleness not to demand ? Her for a wife whose heart was dead to love.
How thou persisted’st after this thou know'st,
* The forty-four following lines, except the three not printed between inverted commas, are not in the 8vo. edition of 1757, but are added from the 12mo.
• And must confess that I am not unjust,
" Lord Rand. That I confess; yet ever must regret
The grief I cannot cure. Would thou wert not Compos'd' of grief and tenderness alone, • But hadst a spark of other passions in thee; 6 Pride, anger, vanity, the strong desire « Of admiration, dear to woman-kind;
These might contend with, and allay thy grief, • As meeting tides and currents smooth our firth
Lady Rand. To such a cause the human mind oft "Its transient calm, a calm I envy not.
[owęs Lord Rand: Sure thou art not the daughter of Sir
Lady Rand. Oh!“rake not up the ashes of my fathers !
Lord Rand. Thy grief wrests to its purposes my words. I never ask'd of thee that ardent love, Which in the breasts of fancy's children burns. Decent affection, and complacent kindness, Were all I wish'd for; but I wish'd in vain : Hence with the less regret my eyes behold The storm of war that gathers o'er this land : If I should perish by the Danish sword, Matilda would not shed one tear the more.
Lady Rand. Thou do'st not think so: woeful as I am
Lord Rand. Strait to the camp,
Of expectation, and impatient asks
Lady Rand. O, may adverse winds,
Lady Rand. War I detest: but war with foreign foes,
Lord Rand. I'll hear no more: this melody would A soldier drop his sword, and doff his arms,
(make * Cowper, at the beginning of the second book of the Task, has a very beautiful passage somewhat similar to this:
• Lands intersected by a narrow frith