THE WORKS OF APHRA BEHN
ABDELAZER; OR, THE MOOR'S REVENGE THE YOUNG KING; OR, THE MISTAKE THE CITY HEIRESS; OR, SIR TIMOTHY TREAT-ALL THE FEIGN'D CURTEZANS; OR, A NIGHT'S INTRIGUE NOTES
ABDELAZER; OR, THE MOOR'S REVENGE.
The old King of Spain, having conquered Fez and killed the Moorish monarch, has taken the orphaned prince Abdelazer under his protection and in time made him General. Abdelazer, though always courageous, has the desire of revenge ever uppermost, and to gain influence, rather than from any love, he becomes the Queen's paramour. She, being a lustful and wicked woman, joins with the Moor in poisoning her husband, at whose death Philip, her second son, newly returned victor from a martial expedition, leaving his army at some distance, rushes in mad with rage and publicly accuses his mother of adultery with Abdelazer. She is greatly incensed, but Cardinal Mendozo, as Protector of the King, promptly banishes her gallant. The young King Ferdinand, however, to please Florella, the Moor's wife, whom he loves, revokes this decree. Abdelazer, in revenge, next orders his native officer Osmin to kill Philip and the Cardinal. They escape by night disguised as monks, whilst Abdelazer alarms the castle with cries of treason and tells the King that Philip and the Cardinal are plotting to murder him. Ferdinand orders Abdelazer to follow them, intending to visit Florella during her husband's absence. Abdelazer, fully aware of his plan, out of pride and mischief furnishes Florella with a dagger, bidding her stab the King if he persists in his suit. Elvira, the Queen Mother's confidante, Watches the King enter Florella's apartment and conveys the news to her Mistress who, with dissembled reluctance, informs Alonzo, the Moor's brother-in-law. Florella resists the King's solicitations and produces the dagger threatening to stab herself. At this juncture the Queen rushes in and, feigning to think that Florella was about to attempt the King's life, kills her. Her motive for this deed is, in reality, jealousy. Whilst the King falls weeping at his dead mistress' feet Abdelazer enters, and in the ensuing fight Ferdinand is slain. Philip is then proclaimed King, but Abdelazer announcing he is a bastard, an avowal backed by the Queen, declares himself Protector of Spain, Overpowered by his following, The lords accept him. Alonzo, however, flies to Philip's camp with the tidings. A battle between the two parties follows, but the Queen treacherously detaches Mendozo, who loves her, from Philip, and although the Moors are at first beaten back they now gain the advantage and Philip is captured. At a general assembly of the nobles the Queen relates the false tale of Philip's illegitimacy and asserts that the Cardinal is his father. She privately bids Mendozo acknowledge this and so gain the crown, but he refuses to support the lie and is promptly arrested as a traitor. Abdelazer now brings forward the Infanta Leonora and proclaims her Queen of Spain, He next disposes of the Queen Mother by bidding Roderigo, a creature of his own, assassinate her forthwith. Roderigo gains admittance disguised as a friar and stabs her, upon which Abdelazer, to screen himself, rushes in and cuts him down. He next openly declares his love for Leonora and is about to force her when Osmin, his officer, enters to inform him that Alonzo, to whom Leonora is affianced, has resisted arrest but is at last secured. Abdelazer, enraged at the interruption, wounds Osmin in the arm. Leonora pities the blow; and the Moorish soldier, deeply hurt at the insult, resolves to betray his master. He accordingly goes to the prison where Philip, the Cardinal, and Alonzo are confined, and killing his fellow Zarrack who was to have been their executioner, sets them free. When Abdelazer enters he finds himself entrapped. He glories, however, in his crimes, and as they set on him kills Osmin, himself falling dead in the melee. The Cardinal is forgiven, Leonora and Alonzo are united, whilst Philip ascends the throne.
_Abdelazer; or, the Moor's Revenge_ is an alteration of the robustious _Lust's Dominion; or, the _Lascivious Queen_, printed 12mo, 1657, and then attributed to Marlowe, who was certainly not the author. It is now generally identified with _The Spanish Moor's Tragedy_ by Dekker (Haughton and Day, 1600), although, as Fleay justly says, there is 'an under-current of pre-Shakespearean work' unlike either Dekker or Day. There are marked crudities of form and a rough conduct of plot which stamp it as of very early origin. Probably it was emended and pruned by the three collaborators.
Although often keeping close to her original, Mrs. Behn has dealt with the somewhat rude material in a very apt and masterly way: she has, to advantage, omitted the old King, Emanuel, King of Portugal, Alvero, father to Maria (Florella), and the two farcical friars, Crab and Cole; she adds Elvira, and whereas in Lust's Dominion the Queen at the conclusion is left alive, declaiming:—
'I'll fly unto some solitary residence When I'll spin out the remnant of my life In true contrition for my past offences.'—
Mrs. Behn far more dramatically kills her Isabella. Perhaps the famous assassination of Henri III of France by the Dominican, Jacques Clement, gave a hint for Roderigo masqued as a monk.
The sexual passion, the predominance of which in this tragedy a recent critic has not a little carpingly condemned, is entirely natural in such an untamed savage as Abdelazer, whilst history affords many a parallel to the lascivious Queen.
Abdelazer; or, The Moor's Revenge was first produced at the Duke's Theatre in Dorset Garden during the late autumn of 1677. It was supported by a strong cast, and Betterton, whose Othello, Steele—writing exquisitely in the Tatler—seems to have considered artistically quite perfect, was no doubt n wonderful representative of the ferocious Afric. The effective role of Queen Isabella fell to Mrs. Mary Lee, the first tragedienne of the day, Mrs. Marshall, the leading lady of the King's Company, having at this time just retired from the stage. [Footnote: Her last role was Berenice in Crowne's heroic tragedy, The Destruction of Jerusalem (1677).] It is interesting to notice that Mrs. Barry on her way to fame played the secondary part of Leonora.
Abdelazer seems to have met with good success, and on Easter Monday, April, 1695, the patentees, after the secession of Betterton, Mrs. Barry, Mrs. Bracegirdle and their following to Lincoln's Inn Fields, chose the tragedy to reopen Drury Lane. The Moor was played by George Powell, a vigorous and passionate actor, who also spoke a new prologue written for the nonce by Cibber, then a mere struggler in the ranks. Colley's verses were accepted at the eleventh hour in default of better, and he tells us how chagrined he was not to be allowed to deliver them in person. The house was very full the first day, but on the morrow it was empty, probably owing to the inexperience of many of the actors and a too hasty rehearsing of the play.
On the stage Abdelazer was superseded by Edward Young's The Revenge, a tragedy largely borrowed in theme and design from Mrs. Behn, with reminiscences of Othello. Produced at Drury Lane, 18 April, 1721, with Mills, Booth, Wilks, Mrs. Porter and Mrs. Horton in the cast, it attained considerable success, and Zanga, the Moor, was long a favourite part with our greatest actors even down to the days of Kean, who excelled in it, and Macready. The Revenge is not without merit, and it stands out well before the lean and arid tragedies of its time, but this, unfortunately, is not much to say. It is not for a moment to be compared with the magnificent tapestry of Abdelazer, woven though the latter may be in colours strong and daring.
ABDELAZER; or, The Moor's Revenge.
_Gallants, you have so long been absent hence, That you have almost cool'd your Diligence; For while we study or revive a Play, You, like good Husbands, in the Country stay, There frugally wear out your Summer Suit, And in Prize Jerkin after Beagles toot; Or, in Montero-Caps, at Feldfares shoot. Nay, some are so obdurate in their Sin, That they swear never to come up again, But all their Charge of Clothes and Treat retrench, To Gloves and Stockings for some Country Wench: Even they, who in the Summer had Mishaps, Send up to Town for Physick for their Claps. The Ladies too are as resolved as they, And having Debts unknown to them, they stay, And with the Gain of Cheese and Poultry pay. Even in their Visits, they from Banquets fall, To entertain with Nuts and Bottle-Ale; And in Discourse with Secresy report State-News, that past a Twelve-month since at Court. Those of them who are most refind, and gay, Now learn the Songs of the last Summer's Play: While the young Daughter does in private mourn, Her Lovers in Town, and hopes not to return. These Country Grievances too great appear: But cruel Ladies, we have greater here; You come not sharp, as you are wont, to Plays; But only on the first and second Days: This made our Poet, in her Visits, look What new strange Courses, for your time you took, And to her great Regret she found too soon, Damn'd Beasts and Ombre spent the Afternoon; So that we cannot hope to see you here Before the little Net-work Purse be clear. Suppose you should have Luck— Yet sitting up so late, as I am told, You'll lose in Beauty what you win in Gold: And what each Lady of another says, Will make you new Lampoons, and us new Plays.
Ferdinand, a young King of Spain, in love with Florella. Mr. Harris. Philip, his Brother. Mr. Smith. Akdelazer, the Moor. Mr. Betterton. Mendozo, Prince Cardinal, in love with the Queen. Mr. Medburn. Alonzo, a young Nobleman of Spain, contracted to Leonora. Mr. Crasbie. Roderigo, a Creature to the Moor, Mr. Norris. Antonio, Sebastian, Two Officers of Phillip's. Mr. John Lee. Osmin, Mr. Percivall. Zarrack, Moors and Officers to Abdelazer. Mr. Richards. Ordonio, a Courtier. A Swain, and Shepherds. Courtiers, Officers, Guards, Soldiers, Moors, Pages, and Attendants.
Isabella, Queen of Spain, Mother to Ferdinand and Philip, in love with Abdelazer. Mrs. Lee. Leonora, her Daughter, Sister to Ferdinand and Philip. Mrs. Barrey. Florella, Wife to Abdelazer, and Sister to Mrs. Betterton. Alonzo. Elvira, Woman to the Queen. Mrs. Osborne. A Nymph, and Shepherdesses. Other Women Attendants.
SCENE Spain, and in the Camp.
SCENE I. A rich Chamber.
A Table with Lights, Abdelazer sullenly leaning his Head on his Hands: after a little while, still Musick plays.
Love in fantastick Triumph sat, Whilst bleeding Hearts around him flow'd, For whom fresh Pains he did create, And strange Tyrannick Pow'r he shewed; From thy bright Eyes he took his Fires, Which round about in sport he hurl'd; But 'twas from mine he took Desires, Enough t'undo the amorous World.
From me he took his Sighs and Tears, From thee his Pride and Cruelty; From me his Languishments and Fears, And ev'ry killing Dart from thee: Thus thou, and I, the God have arrri'd, And set him up a Deity; But my poor Heart alone is harm'd, Whilst thine the Victor is, and free_.
[After which he rouzes, and gazes.
Abd. On me this Musick lost?—this Sound on me That hates all Softness?—What, ho, my Slaves!
Enter Osmin, Zarrack.
Osm. My gracious Lord—
[Enter Queen, Elvira.
Qu. My dearest Abdelazer—
Abd. Oh, are you there?—Ye Dogs, how came she in? Did I not charge you on your Lives to watch, That none disturb my Privacy?
Qu. My gentle Abdelazer, 'tis thy Queen, Who 'as laid aside the Business of her State, To wanton in the kinder Joys of Love— Play all your sweetest Notes, such as inspire The active Soul with new and soft Desire, [To the Musick, they play softly. Whilst we from Eyes—thus dying, fan the Fire. [She sits down by him.
Abd. Cease that ungrateful Noise. [Musick ceases.
Qu. Can ought that I command displease my Moor?
Abd. Away, fond Woman.
Qu. Nay, prithee be more kind.
Abd. Nay, prithee, good Queen, leave me—I am dull, Unfit for Dalliance now.
Qu. Why dost thou frown?—to whom was that Curse sent?
Abd. To thee—
Qu. To me?—it cannot be—to me, sweet Moor?— No, no, it cannot—prithee smile upon me— Smile, whilst a thousand Cupids shall descend And call thee Jove, and wait upon thy Smiles, Deck thy smooth Brow with Flowers; Whilst in my Eyes, needing no other Glass, Thou shalt behold and wonder at thy Beauty.
Abd. Away, away, be gone—
Qu. Where hast thou learnt this Language, that can say But those rude Words—Away, away, be gone? Am I grown ugly now?
Abd. Ugly as Hell—
Qu. Didst thou not love me once, and swore that Heav'n Dwelt in my Face and Eyes?
Abd. Thy Face and Eyes!—Baud, fetch me here a Glass, [To Elvira. And thou shalt see the Balls of both those Eyes Burning with Fire of Lust: That Blood that dances in thy Cheeks so hot, That have not I to cool it Made an Extraction even of my Soul, Decay'd my Youth, only to feed thy Lust? And wou'dst thou still pursue me to my Grave?
Qu. All this to me, my Abdelazer?
Abd. I cannot ride through the Castilian Streets, But thousand Eyes throw killing Looks at me, And cry—That's he that does abuse our King— There goes the Minion of the Spanish Queen, Who, on the lazy Pleasures of his Love, Spends the Revenues of the King of Spain— This many-headed Beast your Lust has arm'd.
Qu. How dare you, Sir, upbraid me with my Love?
Abd. I will not answer thee, nor hear thee speak.
Qu. Not hear me speak!—Yes, and in Thunder too; Since all my Passion, all my soft Intreaties Can do no good upon thee, I'll see (since thou hast banish'd all thy Love, That Love, to which I've sacrific'd my Honour) If thou hast any Sense of Gratitude, For all the mighty Graces I have done thee.
Abd. Do;—and in thy Story too, do not leave out How dear those mighty Graces I have purchas'd; My blooming Youth, my healthful vigorous Youth, Which Nature gave me for more noble Actions Than to lie fawning at a Woman's Feet, And pass my Hours in Idleness and Love— If I cou'd blush, I shou'd thro all this Cloud Send forth my Sense of Shame into my Cheeks.
Qu. Ingrate! Have I for this abus'd the best of Men, My noble Husband? Depriving him of all the Joys of Love, To bring them all intirely to thy Bed; Neglected all my Vows, and sworn 'em here a-new, Here, on thy Lips— Exhausted Treasures that wou'd purchase Crowns, To buy thy Smiles—to buy a gentle Look; And when thou didst repay me—blest the Giver? Oh, Abdelazer, more than this I've done— This very Hour, the last the King can live, Urg'd by thy Witch-craft, I his Life betray'd; And is it thus my Bounties are repaid? Whate'er a Crime so great deserves from Heav'n, By Abdelazer might have been forgiven: [Weeps. But I will be reveng'd by penitence, And e'er the King dies, own my black Offence— And yet that's not enough—Elvira— [Pauses. Cry murder, murder, help, help.
[She and her Women cry aloud, he is surpriz'd, the Queen falls, he draws a Dagger at Elvira.
Elv. Help, murder, murder!—
Abd. Hell, what's this?—peace, Baud—'sdeath, They'll raise the Court upon me, and then I'm lost— My Queen—my Goddess—Oh raise your lovely Eyes, I have dissembled Coldness all this while; And that Deceit was but to try thy Faith. [Takes her up, sets her in a Chair, then kneels. Look up—by Heav'n,'twas Jealousy— Pardon your Slave—pardon your poor Adorer.
Qu. Thou didst upbraid me with my shameful Passion.
Abd. I'll tear my Tongue out for its Profanation.
Qu. And when I woo'd thee but to smile upon me, Thou cry'st—Away, I'm dull, unfit for Dalliance.
Abd. Call back the frighted Blood into thy Cheeks, And I'll obey the Dictates of my Love, And smile, and kiss, and dwell for ever here— Enter Osmin hastily. How now—why star'st thou so?
Osm. My Lord—the King is dead.
Abd. The King dead!—'Twas time then to dissemble. [Aside. What means this Rudeness?— [One knocks.
Zar. My Lord—the Cardinal inquiring for the Queen, The Court is in an uproar, none can find her.
Abd. Not find the Queen! and wou'd they search her here?
Qu. What shall I do? I must not here be found.
Abd. Oh, do not fear—no Cardinal enters here; No King—no God, that means to be secure— Slaves guard the Doors, and suffer none to enter, Whilst I, my charming Queen, provide for your Security— You know there is a Vault deep under Ground, Into the which the busy Sun ne'er enter'd, But all is dark, as are the Shades of Hell, Thro which in dead of Night I oft have pass'd, Guided by Love, to your Apartment, Madam— They knock agen—thither, my lovely Mistress, [Knock. Suffer your self to be conducted—
Osmin, attend the Queen—descend in haste, [Queen, Osm. and Elv. descend the Vault. My Lodgings are beset.
Zar. I cannot guard the Lodgings longer— Don Ordonio, Sir, to seek the Queen—
Abd. How dare they seek her here?
Zar. My Lord, the King has swounded twice, And being recover'd, calls for her Majesty.
Abd. The King not dead!—go, Zafrack, and aloud Tell Don Ordonio and the Cardinal, He that dares enter here to seek the Queen, [Puts his Hand to his Sword. Had better snatch the She from the fierce side Of a young amorous Lion, and 'twere safer.— Again, more knocking!— [Knocking.
Zar. My gracious Lord, it is your Brother, Don Alonzo.
Abd. I will not have him enter—I am disorder'd.
Zar. My Lord, 'tis now too late. Enter Alonzo.
Alon. Saw you not the Queen, my Lord?
Abd. My Lord!
Alon. Was not the Queen here with you?
Abd. The Queen with me! Because, Sir, I am married to your Sister, You, like your Sister, must be jealous too: The Queen with me! with me! a Moor! a Devil! A Slave of Barbary! for so Your gay young Courtiers christen me—But, Don, Altho my Skin be black, within my Veins Runs Blood as red, and royal as the best.— My Father, Great Abdela, with his Life Lost too his Crown; both most unjustly ravish'd By Tyrant Philip, your old King I mean. How many Wounds his valiant Breast receiv'd E'er he would yield to part with Life and Empire: Methinks I see him cover'd o'er with Blood, Fainting amidst those numbers he had conquer'd. I was but young, yet old enough to grieve, Tho not revenge, or to defy my Fetters: For then began my Slavery; and e'er since Have seen that Diadem by this Tyrant worn, Which crown'd the sacred Temples of my Father, And shou'd adorn mine now—shou'd! nay, and must— Go tell him what I say—'twill be but Death— Go, Sir,—the Queen's not here.
Alon. Do not mistake me, Sir,—or if I wou'd, I've no old King to tell—the King is dead— And I am answer'd, Sir, to what I came for, And so good night. [Exit.
_Abd_. Now all that's brave and villain seize my Soul, Reform each Faculty that is not ill, And make it fit for Vengeance, noble Vengeance. Oh glorious Word! fit only for the Gods, For which they form'd their Thunder, Till Man usurp'd their Power, and by Revenge Sway'd Destiny as well as they, and took their trade of killing. And thou, almighty Love, Dance in a thousand forms about my Person, That this same Queen, this easy Spanish Dame, May be bewitch'd, and dote upon me still; Whilst I make use of the insatiate Flame To set all _Spain_ on fire.— Mischief, erect thy Throne, And sit on high; here, here upon my Head. Let Fools fear Fate, thus I my Stars defy: The influence of this—must raise my Glory high. [_Pointing to his Sword.
SCENE II. A Room in the Palace.
Enter Ferdinand weeping, Ordonio bearing the Crown, followed by Alonzo, leading Leonora weeping; Florella, Roderigo, Mendozo, met by the Queen weeping; Elvira and Women.
Qu. What doleful Cry was that, which like the Voice Of angry Heav'n struck thro my trembling Soul? Nothing but horrid Shrieks, nothing but Death; Whilst I, bowing my Knees to the cold Earth, Drowning my Cheeks in Rivulets of Tears, Sending up Prayers in Sighs, t' implore from Heaven Health for the Royal Majesty of Spain— All cry'd, the Majesty of Spain is dead. Whilst the sad Sound flew through the ecchoing Air, And reach'd my frighted Soul—Inform my Fears, Oh my Fernando, oh my gentle Son— [Weeps.
King. Madam, read here the truth, if looks can shew That which I cannot speak, and you wou'd know: The common Fare in ev'ry face appears; A King's great loss the publick Grief declares, But 'tis a Father's Death that claims my Tears. [Card. leads in the Queen attended.
Leon. Ah, Sir! If you thus grieve, who ascend by what y'ave lost, To all the Greatness that a King can boast; What Tributes from my Eyes and Heart are due, Who've lost at once a King and Father too?
King. My Leonora cannot think my Grief Can from those empty Glories find relief; Nature within my Soul has equal share, And that and Love surmount my Glory there. Had Heav'n continu'd Royal Philip's Life, And giv'n me bright Florella for a Wife, [Bows to Florella. To Crown and Scepters I had made no claim, But ow'd my Blessings only to my Flame. But Heav'n well knew in giving thee away, [To Flor. I had no bus'ness for another Joy. [Weeps. The King, Alanzo, with his dying Breath, [Turns to Alon. and Leon. To you my beauteous Sister did bequeath; And I his Generosity approve, And think you worthy Leonora's Love.
Enter Card. and Queen weeping.
Alon. Too gloriously my Services are paid, In the possession of this Royal Maid, To whom my guilty Heart durst ne'er aspire, But rather chose to languish in its Fire.
Enter Philip in a Rage, Antonio and Sebastian.
Phil. I know he is not dead; what envious Powers Durst snatch him hence? he was all great and good, As fit to be ador'd as they above. Where is the Body of my Royal Father? That Body which inspir'd by's sacred Soul, Aw'd all the Universe with ev'ry Frown, And taught 'em all Obedience with his Smiles. Why stand you thus distracted—Mother—Brother— My Lords—Prince Cardinal— Has Sorrow struck you dumb? Is this my Welcome from the Toils of War? When in his Bosom I shou'd find repose, To meet it cold and pale!—Oh, guide me to him, And with my Sighs I'll breathe new Life into't.
King. There's all that's left of Royal Philip now, [Phil, goes out. Pay all thy Sorrow there—whilst mine alone Are swoln too high t' admit of Lookers on. [Ex. King weeping.
Philip returns weeping.
Phil. His Soul is fled to all Eternity; And yet methought it did inform his Body, That I, his darling Philip, was arriv'd With Conquest on my Sword; and even in Death Sent me his Joy in Smiles.
Qu. If Souls can after Death have any Sense Of human things, his will be proud to know That Philip is a Conqueror. Enter Abdelazer. But do not drown thy Laurels thus in Tears, Such Tributes leave to us, thou art a Soldier.
Phil. Gods! this shou'd be my Mother—
Men. It is, great Sir, the Queen.
Phil. Oh, she's too foul for one or t'other Title.
Qu. How, Sir, do you not know me?
Phil. When you were just, I did, And with a Reverence, such as we pay Heav'n, I paid my awful Duty;— But as you have abus'd my Royal Father, For such a Sin the basest of your Slaves Wou'd blush to call you Mother.
Qu. What means my Son?
Phil. Son! by Heav'n, I scorn the Title.
Qu. Oh Insolence!—out of my sight, rude Boy.
Phil. We must not part so, Madam; I first must let you know your Sin and Shame;— Nay, hear me calmly—for, by Heav'n, you shall— My Father whilst he liv'd, tir'd his strong Arm With numerous Battles 'gainst the Enemy, Wasting his Brains in warlike Stratagems; To bring Confusion on the faithless Moors, Whilst you, lull'd in soft Peace at home, betray'd His Name to everlasting Infamy; Suffer'd his Bed to be defil'd with Lust, Gave up your self, your Honour, and your Vows, To wanton in yon sooty Lecher's Arms. [Points to Abd.
Abd. Me, dost thou mean?
Phil. Yes, Villain, thee, thou Hell-begotten Fiend, 'Tis thee I mean.
Qu. Oh most unnatural, to dishonour me!
Phil. That Dog you mean, that has dishonour'd you, Dishonour'd me, these Lords, nay, and all Spain; This Devil's he, that—
Abd. That—what—Oh pardon me if I throw off All Ties of Duty:—wert thou ten King's Sons, And I as many Souls as I have Sins, Thus I would hazard all. [Draws, they all run between.
Phil. Stand off—or I'll make way upon thy Bosom.
Abd. How got you, Sir, this daring?
Phil. From injur'd Philip's Death, Who, whilst he liv'd, unjustly cherish'd thee, And set thee up beyond the reach of Fate; Blind with thy brutal Valor, deaf with thy Flatteries, Discover'd not the Treason thou didst act, Nor none durst let him know 'em—but did he live, I wou'd aloud proclaim them in his Ears.
Abd. You durst as well been damn'd.
Phil. Hell seize me if I want Revenge for this— Not dare! Arise, thou injur'd Ghost of my dead King, And thro thy dreadful Paleness dart a Horror, May fright this pair of Vipers from their Sins.
Abd. Oh insupportable! dost hear me, Boy?
Qu. Are ye all mute, and hear me thus upbraided? [To the Lords.
Phil. Dare ye detain me whilst the Traitor braves me?
Men. Forbear, my Prince, keep in that noble Heat That shou'd be better us'd than on a Slave.
Abd. You politick Cheat—
Men. Abdelazer— By the Authority of my Government, Which yet I hold over the King of Spain, By Warrant of a Council from the Peers, And (as an Unbeliever) from the Church, I utterly deprive thee of that Greatness, Those Offices and Trusts you hold in Spain.
Abd. Cardinal—who lent thee this Commission? Grandees of Spain, do you consent to this?
All. We do.
Alon. What Reason for it? let his Faith be try'd.
Men. It needs no tryal, the Proofs are evident, And his Religion was his Veil for Treason.
Alon. Why should you question his Religion, Sir? He does profess Christianity.
Men. Yes, witness his Habit which he still retains In scorn to ours— His Principles are too as unalterable.
Abd. Is that the only Argument you bring? I tell thee, Cardinal, not thy Holy Gown Covers a Soul more sanctify'd than this Moorish Robe.
Phil. Damn his Religion—he has a thousand Crimes That will yet better justify your Sentence.
Men. Come not within the Court; for if you do, Worse mischief shall ensue—you have your Sentence. [Ex. Phil, and Men.
Alon. My Brother banish'd! 'tis very sudden; For thy sake, Sister, this must be recall'd. [To Flor.
Qu. Alonzo, join with me, I'll to the King, And check the Pride of this insulting Cardinal. [Exeunt all, except Abdelazer, Florella.
Abd. Banish'd! if I digest this Gall, May Cowards pluck the Wreath from off my Brow, Which I have purchas'd with so many Wounds, And all for Spain; for Spain! ingrateful Spain!— Oh, my Florella, all my Glory's vanish'd, The Cardinal (Oh damn him) wou'd have me banish'd.
Flor. But, Sir, I hope you will not tamely go.
Abd. Tamely!—ha, ha, ha,—yes, by all means— A very honest and religious Cardinal!
Flor. I wou'd not for the World you should be banish'd.
Abd. Not Spain, you mean—for then she leaves the King. [Aside. What if I be?—Fools! not to know—All parts o' th' World Allow enough for Villany; for I'll be brave no more. It is a Crime—and then I can live any where— But say I go from hence—I leave behind me A Cardinal that will laugh—I leave behind me A Philip that will clap his Hands in sport— But the worst Wound is this, I leave my Wrongs, Dishonours, and my Discontents, all unreveng'd— Leave me, Florella—prithee do not weep; I love thee, love thee wondrously—go leave me— I am not now at leisure to be fond— Go to your Chamber—go.
Flor. No, to the King I'll fly, And beg him to revenge thy Infamy. [Ex. Flor. To him Alonzo.
Alon. The Cardinal's mad to have thee banish'd Spain. I've left the Queen in angry Contradiction, But yet I fear the Cardinal's Reasoning.
Abd. This Prince's Hate proceeds from Love, He's jealous of the Queen, and fears my Power. [Aside.
Alon. Come, rouse thy wonted Spirits, awake thy Soul, And arm thy Justice with a brave Revenge.
Abd. I'll arm no Justice with a brave Revenge. [Sullenly.
Alon. Shall they then triumph o'er thee, who were once Proud to attend thy conqu'ring Chariot-Wheels?
Abd. I care not—I am a Dog, and can bear wrongs.
Alon. But, Sir, my Honour is concern'd with yours, Since my lov'd Sister did become your Wife; And if yours suffer, mine too is unsafe.
Abd. I cannot help it—
Alon. What Ice has chill'd thy Blood? This Patience was not wont to dwell with thee.
Abd. 'Tis true; but now the World is chang'd you see. Thou art too brave to know what I resolve— [Aside. No more—here comes the King with my Florella. He loves her, and she swears to me she's chaste; 'Tis well, if true—well too, if it be false: [Aside. I care not, 'tis Revenge That I must sacrifice my Love and Pleasure to. [Alon. and Abd. stand aside.
_Enter King, _Lords, Guards passing over the Stage_, Florella _in a suppliant posture weeping_.
King. Thou woo'st me to reverse thy Husband's Doom, And I woo thee for Mercy on my self, Why shoud'st thou sue to him for Life and Liberty, For any other, who himself lies dying, Imploring from thy Eyes a little Pity?
Flor. Oh mighty King! in whose sole Power, like Heav'n, The Lives and Safeties of your Slaves remain, Hear and redress my Abdelazer's Wrongs.
King. All Lives and Safeties in my Power remain! Mistaken charming Creature, if my Power Be such, who kneel and bow to thee, What must thine be, Who hast the Sovereign Command o'er me and it? Wou'dst thou give Life? turn but thy lovely Eyes Upon the wretched thing that wants it, And he will surely live, and live for ever. Canst thou do this, and com'st to beg of me?
Flor. Alas, Sir, what I beg's what you alone can give, My Abdelazer's Pardon.
King. Pardon! can any thing ally'd to thee offend? Thou art so sacred and so innocent, That but to know thee, and to look on thee, Must change even Vice to Virtue. Oh my Florella! So perfectly thou dost possess my Soul, That ev'ry Wish of thine shall be obey'd: Say, wou'dst thou have thy Husband share my Crown? Do but submit to love me, and I yield it.
Flor. Such Love as humble Subjects owe their King. [Kneels, he takes her up. And such as I dare pay, I offer here.
King. I must confess it is a Price too glorious: But, my Florella—
Abd. I'll interrupt your amorous Discourse. [Aside. [Abd. comes up to them.
Flor. Sir, Abdelazer's here.
King. His Presence never was less welcome to me;— [Aside. But, Madam, durst the Cardinal use this Insolence? Where is your noble Husband?
Abd. He sees me, yet inquires for me. [Aside.
Flor. Sir, my Lord is here.
King. Abdelazer, I have heard with much surprize, O' th' Injuries you've receiv'd, and mean to right you: My Father lov'd you well, made you his General, I think you worthy of that Honour still.
Abd. True—for my Wife's sake. [Aside.
King. When my Coronation is solemnized, Be present there, and re-assume your wonted State and Place; And see how I will check the insolent Cardinal.
Abd. I humbly thank my Sovereign— [Kneels, and kisses the King's Hand. That he loves my Wife so well. [Aside. [Exeunt. Manent Abdelazer, Florella.
Flor. Wilt thou not pay my Service with one Smile? Have I not acted well the Suppliant's part?
Abd. Oh wonderfully! y'ave learnt the Art to move. Go, leave me.
Flor. Still out of humour, thoughtful and displeas'd? And why at me, my Abdelazer? what have I done?
Abd. Rarely! you cannot do amiss you are so beautiful. So very fair—Go, get you in, I say— [Turns her in roughly. She has the art of dallying with my Soul, Teaching it lazy softness from her Looks. But now a nobler Passion's enter'd there, And blows it thus—to Air—Idol Ambition, Florella must to thee a Victim fall: Revenge,—to thee—a Cardinal and Prince: And to my Love and Jealousy, a King— More yet, my mighty Deities, I'll do, None that you e'er inspir'd like me shall act; That fawning servile Crew shall follow next, Who with the Cardinal cry'd, banish Abdelazer.
_Like Eastern Monarchs I'll adorn thy Fate, And to the Shades thou shalt descend in State.
SCENE I. A Chamber of State.
Enter the King crown'd, Philip, Mendozo, Queen, Leonora, Florella, Elvira, Alonzo, Roderigo, Ordonio, Sebastian, Antonio, Officers and Guards; met by Abdelazer follow'd by Osmin, Zarrack, and Moors attending. He comes in with Pride, staring on Philip and Mendozo, and takes his stand next the King.
Phil. Why stares the Devil thus, as if he meant From his infectious Eyes to scatter Plagues, And poison all the World? Was he not banish'd? How dares the Traitor venture into th' Presence?— Guards, spurn the Villain forth.
Abd. Who spurns the Moor Were better set his foot upon the Devil— Do, spurn me, and this Hand thus justly arm'd, Shall like a Thunder-bolt, breaking the Clouds, Divide his Body from his Soul—stand back— [To the Guards. Spurn Abdelazer!—
Phil. Death, shall we bear this Insolence?
Alon. Great Sir, I think his Sentence was unjust. [To the King.
Men. Sir, you're too partial to be judge in this, And shall not give your Voice.
Abd. Proud Cardinal—but he shall—and give it loud. And shall not!—who shall hinder him?
Phil. This—and cut his Wind-pipe too. [Offers to draw. To spoil his whisp'ring. [Abd. offers to draw, his Attendants do the same.
King. What means this Violence? Forbear to draw your Swords—'tis we command.
Abd. Sir, do me Justice, I demand no more. [Kneels, and offers his Sword. And at your Feet we lay our Weapons down.
Men. Sir, Abdelazer has had Justice done, And stands by me banish'd the Court of Spain.
King. How, Prince Cardinal! From whence do you derive Authority To banish him the Court without our leave?
Men. Sir, from my Care unto your royal Person, As I'm your Governor—then for the Kingdom's Safety.
King. Because I was a Boy, must I be still so? Time, Sir, has given me in that formal Ceremony, And I am of an age to rule alone; And from henceforth discharge you of your Care. We know your near relation to this Crown, And wanting Heirs, that you must fill the Throne; Till when, Sir, I am absolute Monarch here, And you must learn Obedience.
Men. Pardon my zealous Duty, which I hope You will approve, and not recal his Banishment.
King. Sir, but I will; and who dares contradict It, is a Traitor.
Phil. I dare the first, yet do defy the last.
King. My hot-brain'd Sir, I'll talk to you anon.
Men. Sir, I am wrong'd, and will appeal to Rome.
Phil. By Heav'n, I'll to the Camp—Brother, farewel, When next I meet thee, it shall be in Arms, If thou can'st get loose from thy Mistress' Chains, Where thou ly'st drown'd in idle wanton Love.
Abd. Hah—his Mistress—who is't Prince Philip means?
Phil. Thy Wife, thy Wife, proud Moor, whom thou'rt content To sell for Honour to eternal Infamy— Does't make thee snarl?—Bite on, whilst thou shalt see, I go for Vengeance, and 'twill come with me. [Going out, turns and draws.
Abd. Stay! for 'tis here already—turn, proud Boy. [Abd. draws.
King. What mean you, Philip?—[Talks to him aside.
Qu. Cease, cease your most impolitick Rage. [To Abd. Is this a time to shew't?—Dear Son, you are a King, And may allay this Tempest.
King. How dare you disobey my Will and Pleasure? [To Abd.
Abd. Shall I be calm, and hear my Wife call'd Whore? Were he great Jove, and arm'd with all his Lightning, By Heav'n, I could not hold my just Resentment.
Qu. 'Twas in his Passion, noble Abdelazer— [King talking to Phil. aside. Imprudently thou dost disarm thy Rage, And giv'st the Foe a warning, e'er thou strik'st; When with thy Smiles thou might'st securely kill. You know the Passion that the Cardinal bears me; His Pow'r too o'er Philip, which well manag'd Will serve to ruin both: put up your Sword— When next you draw it, teach it how to act.
Abd. You shame me, and command me.
Qu. Why all this Rage?—does it become you, Sir? [To Men. aside. What is't you mean to do?
Men. You need not care, whilst Abdelazer's safe.
Qu. Jealousy, upon my Life—how gay it looks!
Men. Madam, you want that pitying Regard To value what I do, or what I am; I'll therefore lay my Cardinal's Hat aside, And in bright Arms demand my Honour back.
Qu. Is't thus, my Lord, you give me Proofs of Love? Have then my Eyes lost all their wonted Power? And can you quit the hope of gaining me, To follow your Revenge?—go—go to fight, Bear Arms against your Country, and your King, All for a little worthless Honour lost.
Men. What is it, Madam, you would have me do?
Qu. Not side with Philip, as you hope my Grace— Now, Sir, you know my Pleasure, think on't well.
Men. Madam, you know your Power o'er your Slave, And use it too tyrannically—but dispose The Fate of him, whose Honour, and whose Life, Lies at your Mercy— I'll stay and die, since 'tis your gracious Pleasure.
King. Philip, upon your Life, Upon your strict Allegiance, I conjure you To remain at Court, till I have reconcil'd you.
Phil. Never, Sir; Nor can you bend my Temper to that Tameness.
King. 'Tis in my Power to charge you as a Prisoner; But you're my Brother—yet remember too I am your King—No more.
Phil. I will obey.
King. Abdelazer, I beg you will forget your Cause of Hate Against my Brother Philip, and the Cardinal; He's young, and rash, but will be better temper'd.
Abd. Sir, I have done, and beg your royal Pardon.
King. Come, Philip, give him your Hand.
Phil. I can forgive without a Ceremony.
King. And to confirm ye Friends, I invite you all to Night to banquet with me; Pray see you give Attendance—Come, Brother, You must along with us.
[Exeunt all but Abd. Queen and Women.
Qu. Leave me— [To the Women, who go out. Now my dear Moor.
Qu. Why dost thou answer with that cold Reserve— Is that a Look—an Action for a Lover?
Abd. Ah, Madam—
Qu. Have I not taken off thy Banishment? Restor'd thee to thy former State and Honours? Nay, and heap'd new ones too, too mighty for thy Hopes; And still to raise thee equal to this Heart, Where thou must ever reign.
Abd. 'Tis true, my bounteous Mistress, all this you've done— But—
Qu. But what, my Abdelazer?
Abd. I will not call it to your Memory.
Qu. What canst thou mean?
Abd. Why was the King remov'd?
Qu. To make thy way more easy to my Arms.
Abd. Was that all?
Abd. Not but it is a Blessing Gods would languish for— But as you've made it free, so make it just.
Qu. Thou mean'st, marry thee.
Abd. No, by the Gods— [Aside. Not marry thee, unless I were a King.
Qu. What signifies the Name to him that rules one?
Abd. What use has he of Life, that cannot live Without a Ruler?
Qu. Thou wouldst not have me kill him.
Abd. Oh, by no means, not for my wretched Life! What, kill a King!—forbid it, Heaven: Angels stand like his Guards about his Person. The King! Not so many Worlds as there be Stars Twinkling upon the embroider'd Firmament! The King! He loves my Wife Florella, shou'd he die— I know none else durst love her.
Qu. And that's the Reason you wou'd send him hence.
Abd. I must confess, I wou'd not bear a wrong: But do not take me for a Villain, Madam; He is my King, and may do what he pleases.
Qu. 'Tis well, Sir.
Abd. Again that Frown, it renders thee more charming Than any other Dress thou could'st put on.
Qu. Away, you do not love me.
Abd. Now mayst thou hate me, if this be not pretty.
Qu. Oh, you can flatter finely—
Abd. Not I, by Heaven: Oh, that this Head were circled in a Crown, And I were King, by Fortune, as by Birth! And that I was, till by thy Husband's Power I was divested in my Infancy— Then you shou'd see, I do not flatter ye. But I, instead of that, must see my Crown Bandy'd from Head to Head, and tamely see it: And in this wretched state I live, 'tis true; But with what Joy, you, if you lov'd, might guess.
Qu. We need no Crowns; Love best contented is In shady Groves, and humble Cottages, Where when 'twould sport, it safely may retreat, Free from the Noise and Danger of the Great; Where Victors are ambitious of no Bays, But what their Nymphs bestow on Holy-days; Nor Envy can the amorous Shepherd move, Unless against a Rival in his Love.
Abd. Love and Ambition are the same to me, In either I'll no Rivals brook.
Qu. Nor I: And when the King you urge me to remove, It may be from Ambition, not from Love.
Abd. Those Scruples did not in your Bosom dwell, When you a King did in a Husband kill.
Qu. How, Sir, dare you upbraid me with that Sin, To which your Perjuries first drew me in?
Abd. You interrupt my Sense; I only meant A Sacrifice to Love so well begun Shou'd not Devotion want to finish it; And if that stop to all our Joys were gone, The envying World wou'd to our Power submit: But Kings are sacred, and the Gods alone Their Crimes must judge, and punish too, or none— Yet he alone destroys his Happiness.
Qu. There's yet one more—
Abd. One more! give me his Name, And I will turn it to a Magick Spell, To bind him ever fast.
Abd. Florella! Oh, I cou'd gnaw my Chains That humble me so low as to adore her: [Aside. But the fond Blaze must out while I erect A nobler Fire more fit for my Ambition. Florella dies a Victim to your Will. I will not let you lose one single Wish, For a poor Life, or two; Tho I must see my Glories made a Prey, And not demand 'em from the Ravisher; Nor yet complain because he is my King: But Philip's Brow no sacred Ointment deifies, If he do wrong, stands fair for the Revenger.
Qu. Philip! instruct me how t' undo that Boy I hate; The publick Infamy I have receiv'd, I will revenge with nothing less than Death.
Abd. 'Tis well we can agree in our Resentments, For I have vow'd he shall not live a day; He has an Art to pry into our Secrets: To all besides our Love is either hid, Or else they dare not see—But this Prince Has a most dangerous Spirit must be calm'd.
Qu. I have resolv'd his Death, And now have waiting in my Cabinet, Engines to carry on this mighty Work of my Revenge.
Abd. Leave that to me, who equally am injur'd; You, like the Gods, need only but command, And I will execute your sacred Will— That done, there's none dare whisper what we do.
Qu. Nature, be gone, I chase thee from my Soul, Who Love's almighty Empire does controul: And she that will to thy dull Laws submit, In spite of thee, betrays the Hypocrite. No rigid Virtue shall my Soul possess, Let Gown-men preach against the Wickedness; Pleasures were made by Gods, and meant for us, And not t' enjoy 'em, were ridiculous.
Abd. Oh perfect, great and glorious of thy Sex! Like thy great self 'twas spoke, resolv'd and brave— I must attend the King—where I will watch All Philip's Motions.
Qu. And—after that—if you will beg Admittance, I'll give you leave to visit me to Night.
Abd. Madam, that Blessing now must be defer'd. [Leads her to the Door. My Wrongs and I will be retir'd to Night, And bring forth Vengeance with the Morning's Light.
Enter Osmin, Zarrack.
Osm. My gracious Lord.
Abd. Come near—and take a Secret from my Lips; And he who keeps not silent hears his Death.— This Night the Prince and Cardinal—do you mark me— Are murder'd.
Osm. Where, Sir?
Abd. Here in the Court.
Osm. By whom, great Sir?
Abd. By thee—I know thou darst.
Osm. Whatever you command.
Abd. Good!—then see it be perform'd. Osmin, how goes the Night?
Osm. About the hour of Eight, And you're expected at the Banquet, Sir: Prince Philip storms, and swears you're with the Queen.
Abd. Let him storm on; the Tempest will be laid— Where's my Wife?
Osm. In the Presence, Sir, with the Princess and Other Ladies.
Abd. She's wondrous forward!—what the King— (I am not jealous tho)—but he makes court to her. —Hah, Osmin! He throws out Love from Eyes all languishing;— Come tell me,—he does sigh to her,—no matter if he do— And fawns upon her Hand,—and kneels;—tell me, Slave!
Osm. Sir, I saw nothing like to Love; he only treats her Equal to her Quality.
Abd. Oh, damn her Quality.
Zar. I came just now From waiting on his Person to the Banquet, And heard him ask, if he might visit her to Night, Having something to impart to her, that concern'd his Life.
Abd. And so it shall, by Heav'n! [Aside.
Zar. But she deny'd, and he the more intreated— But all in vain, Sir.
Abd. Go, Osmin, (you the Captain of my Guard of Moors) Chuse out the best affected Officers, To keep the Watch to Night— Let every Guard be doubled—you may be liberal too— And when I gave the Word, be ready all.
Osm. What shall the Word be? [Ex. Zarrack.
Abd. Why—Treason—mean time make it your Business, To watch the Prince's coming from the Banquet; Heated with Wine, and fearless of his Person, You'll find him easily to be attack'd.
Osm. Sir, do not doubt my Management nor Success. [Ex. Osmin.
Abd. So, I thank thee, Nature, that in making me, Thou didst design me Villain; Hitting each Faculty for active Mischief: Thou skilful Artist, thank thee for my Face, It will discover nought that's hid within. Thus arm'd for Ills, Darkness, and Horrour, I invoke your aid; And thou dread Night, shade all your busy Stars In blackest Clouds, And let my Dagger's Brightness only serve To guide me to the Mark—and guide it so, It may undo a Kingdom at one Blow.
SCENE II. A Banqueting Hall.
A Banquet, under a Canopy the King, Leonora, Florella, Ladies waiting; Philip, Mendozo, Alonzo, Ordonio, Antonio, Sebastian, Lords and Attendants: As soon as the Scene draws off, they all rise, and come forward.
King. My Lords, you're sad to Night; give us loud Musick— I have a double Cause to mourn; And Grief has taken up his dwelling here— Beyond the Art of Love, or Wine to conquer— 'Tis true, my Father's dead—and possibly 'Tis not so decent to appear thus gay; But Life, and Death, are equal to the wretched, And whilst Florella frowns—'tis in that Number [To Flor. I must account her Slave—Alonzo, How came thy Father so bewitch'd to Valour, (For Abdelazer has no other Virtue) To recompense it with so fair a Creature? Was this—a Treasure t' inrich the Devil with?
Alon. Sir, he has many Virtues, more than Courage, Royally born, serv'd well his King, and Country; My Father brought him up to martial Toils, And taught him to be brave; I hope, and good;— Beside, he was your Royal Father's Favourite.
King. No, Alonzo, 'twas not his Love to Virtue, But nice Obedience to his King, and Master, Who seeing my increase of Passion for her, To kill my Hopes, he gave her to this Moor.
Alon. She's now a virtuous Woman, Sir.
King. Politick Sir, who would have made her other? Against her Will, he forc'd her to his Arms, Whilst all the World was wondring at his Madness.
Alon. He did it with her Approbation, Sir.
King. With thine, Florella! cou'dst thou be so criminal?
Flor. Sir, I was ever taught Obedience; My humble Thoughts durst ne'er aspire to you, And next to that—Death, or the Moor, or any thing.
King. Oh God! had I then told my Tale So feebly, it could not gain Belief. Oh my Florella! this little Faith of thine Has quite undone thy King—Alonzo, Why didst not thou forbid this fatal Marriage, She being thy only Sister?
Alon. Great Sir, I did oppose it with what Violence My Duty would permit; and wou'd have dy'd In a just Quarrel of her dear Defence; And, Sir, though I submitted to my Father, The Moor and I stand on unequal Terms.
Phil. Come, who dares drink Confusion to this Moor?
Ant. That, Sir, will I.
Sebast. And I.
Phil. Page, fill my Glass, I will begin the Round, Ye all shall pledge it—Alonzo, first to thee. [Drinks.
Alon. To me, Sir!
Phil. Why, yes, thou lovest him—therefore— Nay, you shall drink it, tho 'twere o'th' Stygian Lake. Take it—by Heaven, thoud'st pimp for him to my Mother— Nay, and after that, give him another Sister.
Alon. 'Tis well you are my Prince.
Phil. I'd rather be a Prince of Curs—come pledge me—
Alon. Well, Sir, I'll give you way. [Drinks.
Phil. So wou'dst thou any—though they trod on thee. So—nay, Prince Cardinal, tho it be not decent For one so sanctify'd to drink a Health; Yet 'tis your Office both to damn and bless— Come, drink and damn the Moor.
Men. Sir, I'm for no carousing.
Phil. I'm in an Humour now to be obey'd, And must not be deny'd—But see, the Moor Enter Abdelazer, gazes on them. Just come to pledge at last—Page, fill again—
Abd. I'll do you Reason, Prince, what'er it be. [Gives him the Glass.
Phil. 'Twas kindly said—Confusion to the Moor.
Abd. Confusion to the Moor—if this vain Boy, See the next rising Sun. [Aside.
Phil. Well done, my Lad.
King. Abdelazer, you have been missing long, The publick Good takes up your whole Concern, But we shall shortly ease you of that Load— Come, let's have some Musick; Ordonio, did I not call for Musick?
Ord. You did, Sir.
Rod. My gracious Lord— [Roderigo whispers to Abd.
Abd. No more—the Prince observes us.
Phil. There's no good towards when you are whisp'ring.
Ord. The Musick you commanded, Sir, is ready.
_Make haste_, Amintas, _come away, The Sun is up and will not stay; And oh how very short's a Lover's_ Day! _Make haste_, Amintas, _to this Grove, Beneath whose Shade so oft I've sat, And heard my dear lay'd Swain repeat, How much he_ Galatea _lov'd; Whilst all the listening Birds around, Sung to the Musick of the blessed Sound.
Make haste, Amintas, come away, The Sun is up and will not stay; And oh how very short's a Lover's Day!
Swain enters, with Shepherds and Shepherdesses, and Pipes.
I hear thy charming Voice, my Fair, And see, bright Nymph, thy Swain is here; Who his Devotions had much earlier paid, But that a Lamb of thine was stray'd; And I the little Wanderer have brought, That with one angry Look from thy fair Eyes, Thou may'st the little Fugitive chastise, Too great a Punishment for any Fault. Come, Galatea, haste away, The Sun is up and will not stay, And oh how very short's a Lover's Day! [Dance.
King. How likes Florella this?
Flor. Sir, all Delight's so banish'd from my Soul, I've lost the Taste of every single Joy.
Abd. God's! this is fine! Give me your Art of Flattery, Or something more of this, will ruin me— Tho I've resolv'd her Death, yet whilst she's mine, I would not have her blown by Summer Flies.
Phil. Mark how he snarls upon the King! The Cur will bite anon.
Abd. Come, my Florella, is't not Bed-time, Love?
Flor. I'll wait upon you, Sir. [Going out.
Phil. The Moor has ta'en away, we may depart.
Abd. What has he ta'en away? [Turns about.
Phil. The fine gay play-thing, that made us all so merry.
Abd. Was this your Sport? [To his Wife.
King. Abdelazer, keep your way—Good night, fair Creature!
Abd. I will obey for once.
[Ex. Abd. and Flor.
King. Why this Resentment, Brother, and in publick?
Phil. Because he gives me Cause, and that in Publick. And, Sir, I was not born to bear with Insolence; I saw him dart Revenge from both his Eyes, And bite his angry Lip between his Teeth, To keep his Jealousy from breaking forth, Which, when it does—stand fast, my King.
King. But, Philip, we will find a way to check him; Till when we must dissemble—take my Counsel—Good night.
Phil. I cannot, nor I will not—yet good Night. [Exit King, and all but Philip's Party. Well, Friends, I see the King will sleep away his Anger, And tamely see us murder'd by this Moor; But I'll be active, Boys— Therefore, Antonio, you command the Horse; Get what more Numbers to our Cause you can: 'Tis a good Cause, and will advance our Credit. We will awake this King out of his Lethargy of Love, And make him absolute—Go to your Charge, And early in the Morning I'll be with you— [Ex. all but Phil. If all fail, Portugal shall be my Refuge, Those whom so late I conquer'd, shall protect me— But this Alanzo I shou'd make an Interest in; Cou'd I but flatter—'tis a Youth that's brave.
Enter Cardinal in haste.
Men. Fly, fly, my Prince, we are betray'd and lost else.
Phil. Betray'd and lost! Dreams, idle Coward Dreams.
Men. Sir, by my Holy Order, I'm in earnest, And you must either quickly fly, or die; 'Tis so ordain'd—nor have I time to tell By what strange Miracle I learn'd our Fate.
Phil. Nor care I, I will stay, and brave it.
Men. That, Sir, you shall not, there's no safety here, And 'tis the Army only can secure us.
Phil. Where had you this Intelligence?
Men. I'll tell you as we go to my Apartment; Where we must put ourselves in Holy Dress; For so the Guards are set in every Place, (And those all Moors, the Slaves of Abdelazer) That 'tis impossible in any other Habit to escape. Come, haste with me, and let us put 'em on.
Phil. I had rather stay and kill till I am weary— Let's to the Queen's Apartment and seize this Moor; I'm sure there the Mongrel's kennel'd.
Men. Sir, we lose time in talking—Come with me.
Phil. Where be these lousy Gaberdines?
Men. I will conduct you to 'em.
Phil. Mother—and Moor, farewel, I'll visit you again; and if I do, My black Infernal, I will conjure you.
SCENE I. A Gallery in the Palace.
Enter Abdelazer and Zarrack.
Zar. Osmin (my Lord) by this has done his Task, And Philip is no more among the living: Will you not rest to night?
Abd. Is this a time for Sleep and Idleness—dull Slaves?
Zar. The Bus'ness we have Order, Sir, to do, We can without your Aid.
Abd. Osmin! Thy ominous Looks presage an ill Success; Thy Eyes no joyful News of Murders tell: I thought I shou'd have seen thee drest in Blood— Speak! Speak thy News— Say that he lives, and let it be thy last.
Osm. Yes, Sir, he lives.
Abd. Lives! thou ly'st, base Coward—lives!—renounce thy Gods! It were a Sin less dangerous—speak again.
Osm. Sir, Philip lives.
Abd. Oh treacherous Slave!
Osm. Not by my Fault, by Heav'n!
Abd. By what curst Chance, If not from thee, could he evade his Fate?
Osm. By some Intelligence from his good Angel.
Abd. From his good Devil! Gods! must the Earth another Day at once Bear him and me alive?
Osm. Another Day!—an Age for ought I know; For, Sir, the Prince is fled, the Cardinal too.
Abd. Fled! fled—say'st thou? Oh, I cou'd curse the Stars, that rule this Night: 'Tis to the Camp they're fled; the only Refuge That Gods, or Men cou'd give 'em— Where got you this Intelligence?
Osm. My Lord, inquiring for the Prince At the Apartment of the Cardinal, (whither he went) His Pages answer'd me, he was at his Devotions: A lucky time (I thought) to do the Deed; And breaking in, found only their empty Habits, And a poor sleepy Groom, who with much threatning, Confess'd that they were fled, in holy Robes.
Abd. That Case of Sanctity was first ordain'd, To cheat the honest World: Twas an unlucky Chance—but we are idle— Let's see, how from this ill, we may advance a good— [Pauses. 'Tis now dead time of Night, when Rapes, and Murders Are hid beneath the horrid Veil of Darkness— I'll ring thro all the Court, with doleful Sound The sad Alarms of Murder—Murder—Zarrack, Take up thy standing yonder—Osmin, thou At the Queen's Apartment—cry out, Murder: Whilst I, like his ill Genius, do awake the King; Perhaps in this Disorder I may kill him. [Aside. —Treason—Murder—Murder—Treason.
Enter Alonzo, and Courtiers.
Alon. What dismal Crys are these?—
Abd. Where is the King?—Treason—Murder! Where—is the sleeping Queen?—Arise, arise.
Osm. The Devil taught him all his Arts of Falshood. [Aside.
Enter King in a Night-Gown, with Lights.
King. Who frights our quiet Slumbers with this Noise?
Enter Queen and Women, with Lights.
Qu. Was it a Dream, or did I hear the Sound Of Treason, call me from my silent Griefs?
King. Who rais'd this Rumour, Abdelazer, you?
Abd. I did, Great Sir.
King. Your Reasons.
Abd. Oh Sir, your Brother Philip, and the Cardinal, Both animated by a Sense of Wrongs, (And envying, Sir, the Fortune of your Slave) Had laid a Plot this Night, to murder you: And 'cause they knew it was my waiting Night, They wou'd have laid the Treason, Sir, on me.
King. The Cardinal, and my Brother! bring them forth, Their Lives shall answer it.
Abd. Sir, 'tis impossible: For when they found their Villany discover'd, They in two Friers Habits made escape.
King. That Cardinal is subtle, and ambitious, And from him Philip learnt his dangerous Principles.
Qu. The Ambition of the one infects the other, And they are both too dangerous to live— But might a Mother's Counsel be obey'd, I wou'd advise you, send the valiant Moor To fetch 'em back, e'er they can reach the Camp: For thither they are fled—where they will find A Welcome fatal to us all.
King. Madam, you counsel well; and, Abdelazer, Make it your Care to fetch these Traitors back, Not only for my Safety, and the Kingdom's, But as they are your Enemies; and th' envious World Will say, you made this story to undo 'em.
Abd. Sir, I'll obey; nor will I know repose, Till I have justify'd this fatal Truth. [Abd. goes to the Queen, and talks to her.
King. Mean time I will to my Florella's Lodging, Silence, and Night, are the best Advocates [Aside. To plead a Lover's Cause—Abdelazer—haste. Madam, I'll wait on you to your Chamber.
Abd. Sir, that's my Duty.
King. Madam, good Night—Alonzo, to your rest. [Ex. all but Qu. and Abd.
Qu. Philip escap'd! Oh, that I were upon some Desart Shoar, Where I might only to the Waves and Winds Breathe out my Sense of Rage for this Defeat.
Abd. Oh, 'tis no time for Rage, but Action, Madam.
Qu. Give me but any Hopes of blest Revenge, And I will be as calm as happy Lovers.
Abd. There is a way, and is but that alone; But such a way, as never must be nam'd.
Qu. How! not be nam'd! Oh, swear thou hat'st me rather, It were a Torment equal to thy Silence.
Abd. I'll shew my Passion rather in that Silence.
Qu. Kind Torturer, what mean'st thou?
Abd. To shew you, Madam, I had rather live Wrong'd and contemn'd by Philip, Than have your dearer Name made infamous.
Qu. Heavens! dost thou mock my Rage? can any Sin I could commit, undo my Honour more Than his late Insolence? Oh, name me something may revenge that Shame: I wou'd encounter killing Plagues, or Fire, To meet it—Come, oh quickly give me ease.
Abd. I dare no more reveal the guilty Secret, Than you dare execute it when 'tis told.
Qu. How little I am understood by thee— Come, tell me instantly, for I grow impatient; You shall obey me—nay, I do command you.
Abd. Durst you proclaim—Philip a Bastard, Madam?
Qu. Hah! proclaim my self—what he wou'd have me thought! What mean'st thou?—
Abd. Instruct you in the way to your Revenge.
Qu. Upon my self thou meanest—
Abd. No— He's now fled to th' Camp, where he'll be fortify'd Beyond our Power to hurt, but by this means; Which takes away his Hopes of being a King, (For he'd no other Aim in taking Arms) And leaves him open to the People's Scorn; Whom own'd as King, Numbers wou'd assist him, And then our Lives he may dispose, As he has done our Honours.
Qu. There's Reason in thy Words: but oh my Fame!
Abd. Which I, by Heaven, am much more tender of, Than my own Life or Honour; and I've a way To save that too, which I'll at leisure tell you. In the mean time send for your Confessor, And with a borrow'd Penitence confess, Their Idol Philip is a Bastard; And zealously pretend you're urg'd by Conscience, A cheap Pretence to cozen Fools withal.
Qu. Revenge, although I court you with my fatal Ruin, I must enjoy thee: there's no other way, And I'm resolv'd upon the mighty Pleasure; He has profan'd my purer Flame for thee, And merits to partake the Infamy. [He leads her out.
Abd. Now have at my young King— I know he means to cuckold me to Night, Whilst he believes I'll tamely step aside— No, let Philip and the Cardinal gain the Camp, I will not hinder 'em— I have a nobler Sacrifice to make To my declining Honour, shall redeem it, And pay it back with Interest—well, then in order to't, I'll watch about the Lodgings of Florella, And if I see this hot young Lover enter, I'll save my Wife the trouble of allaying The amorous Heat—this—will more nimbly do't, [Snatches out his Dagger. And do it once for all—
Enter Florella in her Night-Clothes.
Flor. My Abdelazer—why in that fierce posture, As if thy Thoughts were always bent on Death? Why is that Dagger out?—against whom drawn?
Abd. Or stay,—suppose I let him see Florella, And when he's high with the expected Bliss, Then take him thus—Oh, 'twere a fine surprize!
Flor. My Lord—dear Abdelazer.
Abd. Or say—I made her kill him—that were yet An Action much more worthy of my Vengeance.
Flor. Will you not speak to me? what have I done?
Abd. By Heaven, it shall be so.
Flor. What shall be so?
Flor. Why dost thou dress thy Eyes in such unusual wonder? There's nothing here that is a stranger to thee, Or what is not intirely thine own.
Flor. Thou canst not doubt it.
Abd. No,—and for a proof that thou art so,—take this Dagger.
Flor. Alas, Sir!—what to do?
Abd. To stab a Heart, Florella, a Heart that loves thee.
Flor. Heaven forbid!
Abd. No matter what Heaven will, I say it must—
Flor. What must?
Abd. That Dagger must enter the Heart of him That loves thee best, Florella;—guess the Man.
Flor. What means my Moor? Wouldst thou have me kill thy self?
Abd. Yes—when I love thee better than the King.
Flor. Ah, Sir! what mean you?
Abd. To have you kill this King, When next he does pursue thee with his Love— What, do you weep?— By Heaven, they shall be bloody Tears then.
Flor. I shall deserve them—when I suffer Love That is not fit to hear;—but for the King, That which he pays me, is so innocent—
Abd. So innocent! damn thy dissembling Tongue; Did I not see, with what fierce wishing Eyes He gazed upon thy Face, whilst yours as wantonly Returned, and understood the amorous Language?
Flor. Admit it true, that such his Passions were, As (Heaven's my witness) I've no cause to fear; Have not I Virtue to resist his Flame, Without a pointed Steel?
Abd. Your Virtue!—Curse on the weak Defence; Your Virtue's equal to his Innocence. Here, take this Dagger, and if this Night he visit thee, When he least thinks on't—send it to his Heart.
Flor. If you suspect me, do not leave me, Sir.
_Abd_. Oh—I'm dispatch'd away—to leave you free— About a wonderful Affair—mean time, I know you will be visited—but as you wish to live, At my return let me behold him dead.— Be sure you do't—'tis for thy Honour's safety— I love thee so, that I can take no rest, Till thou hast kill'd thy Image in his Breast. —Adieu, my dear _Florella_. [Exit_.
Flor. Murder my King! the Man that loves me too— What Fiend, what Fury such an act wou'd do? My trembling Hand wou'd not the Weapon bear, And I should sooner strike it here—than there. [Pointing to her Breast. No! though of all I am, this Hand alone Is what thou canst command, as being thy own; Yet this has plighted no such cruel Vow; No Duty binds me to obey thee 'now. To save my King's, my Life I will expose, No Martyr dies in a more glorious Cause.
SCENE II. The Queen's Apartments.
Enter the Queen in an undress alone, with a Light.
Qu. Thou grateful Night, to whom all happy Lovers Make their devout and humble Invocations; Thou Court of Silence, where the God of Love, Lays by the awful Terror of a Deity, And every harmful Dart, and deals around His kind Desires; whilst thou, blest Friend to Joys, Draw'st all thy Curtains, made of gloomy Shades, To veil the Blushes of soft yielding Maids; Beneath thy Covert grant the Love-sick King, May find admittance to Florella's Arms; And being there, keep back the busy Day; Maintain thy Empire till my Moor returns; Where in her Lodgings he shall find his Wife, Amidst her amorous Dalliance with my Son.— My watchful Spies are waiting for the Knowledge; Which when to me imparted, I'll improve, Till my Revenge be equal to my Love. Enter Elvira. —Elvira, in thy Looks I read Success; What hast thou learnt?
Elv. Madam, the King is gone as you imagin'd, To fair Florella's Lodging.
Qu. But art thou sure he gain'd Admittance?
Elv. Yes, Madam; But what Welcome he has found, to me's unknown; But I believe it must be great, and kind.
Qu. I am of thy Opinion.— But now, Elvira, for a well-laid Plot, To ruin this Florella;—though she be innocent, Yet she must die; so hard a Destiny My Passion for her Husband does decree: But 'tis the way I stop at.— His Jealousy already I have rais'd; That's not enough, his Honour must be touch'd. This Meeting twixt the King and fair Florella, Must then be render'd publick; 'Tis the Disgrace, not Action, must incense him— Go you to Don Alonzo's Lodging strait, Whilst I prepare my Story for his Ear.— [Exit Elvira. Assist me all that's ill in Woman-kind, And furnish me with Sighs, and feigned Tears, That may express a Grief for this Discovery.— My Son, be like thy Mother, hot and bold; And like the noble Ravisher of Rome, Court her with Daggers, when thy Tongue grows faint, Till thou hast made a Conquest o'er her Virtue. Enter Alonzo, Elvira. —Oh, Alonzo, I have strange News to tell thee!
Alon. It must be strange indeed, that makes my Queen Dress her fair Eyes in Sorrow.
Qu. It is a Dress that thou wilt be in love with, When thou shalt hear my Story.— You had a Sister once.
Qu. Yes, had,—whilst she was like thy self, all Virtue; Till her bewitching Eyes kindled such Flames, As will undo us all.
Alon. My Sister, Madam! sure it cannot be:— What Eyes? what Flames?—inform me strait.
Qu. Alonzo, thou art honest, just and brave: And should I tell thee more,— (Knowing thy Loyalty's above all Nature) It would oblige thee to commit an Outrage, Which baser Spirits will call Cruelty.
Alon. Gods, Madam! do not praise my Virtue thus, Which is so poor, it scarce affords me patience To attend the end of what you wou'd deliver— Come, Madam, say my Sister—is a Whore. I know 'tis so you mean; and being so, Where shall I kneel for Justice? Since he that shou'd afford it me, Has made her Criminal.— Pardon me, Madam, 'tis the King I mean.
Qu. I grieve to own, all thy prophetick Fears Are true, Alonzo, 'tis indeed the King.
Alon. Then I'm disarm'd, For Heaven can only punish him.
Qu. But, Alonzo, Whilst that religious Patience dwells about thee, All Spain must suffer, nay, Ages that shall ensue Shall curse thy Name, and Family; From whom a Race of Bastards shall proceed, To wear that Crown.
Alon. No, Madam, not for mine, My Sister's in my power, her Honour's mine; I can command her Life, though not my King's. Her Mother is a Saint, and shou'd she now Look down from Heaven upon a Deed so foul, I think even there she wou'd invent a Curse, To thunder on her Head.— But, Madam, whence was this Intelligence?
Qu. Elvira saw the King enter her Lodgings, With Lover's haste, and Joy.
Alon. Her Lodgings!—when?
Qu. Now, not an Hour ago, Now, since the Moor departed.
Alon. Damnation on her! can she be thus false? Come, lead me to the Lodgings of this Strumpet, And make me see this truth, [To Elvira. Or I will leave thee dead, for thus abusing me.
Qu. Nay, dear Alonzo, do not go inrag'd, Stay till your Temper wears a calmer look; That if, by chance, you shou'd behold the Wantons, In little harmless Dalliance, such as Lovers (Aided with Silence, and the shades of Night) May possibly commit, You may not do that which you may repent of.
Alon. Gods! should I play the Pander! And with my Patience, aid the amorous Sin— No, I shall scarce have so much Tameness left, To mind me of my Duty to my King. Ye Gods! behold the Sacrifice I make To my lost Honour: behold, and aid my Justice. [Ex. Alon.
Qu. It will concern me too to see this Wonder, For yet I scarce can credit it.
SCENE III. Florella's Lodgings.
Enter the King, leading in Florella all in fear.
Flor. Ah, Sir, the Gods and you would be more merciful, If by a Death less cruel than my Fears, You would preserve my Honour; begin it quickly, And after that I will retain my Duty, And at your Feet breathe Thanks in dying Sighs.
King. Where learnt you, Fairest, so much Cruelty To charge me with the Power of injuring thee? Not from my Eyes, where Love and Languishment Too sensibly inform thee of my Heart.
Flor. Call it not Injury, Sir, to free my Soul From fears which such a Visit must create, In dead of Night, when nought but frightful Ghosts Of restless Souls departed walk the Round.
King. That fleeting thing am I, whom all Repose, All Joys, and every good of Life abandon'd, That fatal Hour thou gavest thy self away; And I was doom'd to endless Desperation: Yet whilst I liv'd, all glorious with my hopes, Some sacred Treasures in thy Breast I hid, And near thee still my greedy Soul will hover.
Flor. Ah, rather like a Ravisher you come, With Love and Fierceness in your dangerous Eyes; And both will equally be fatal to me.
King. Oh, do not fear me, as the fair Lucretia Did the fierce Roman Youth; I mean no Rapes, Thou canst not think that I wou'd force those Joys, Which cease to be so, when compell'd, Florella— No, I would sooner pierce this faithful Heart, Whose Flame appears too criminal for your Mercy.
Flor. Why do you fright me, Sir? methinks your Looks All pale, your Eyes thus fixt, and trembling Hands, The awful Horror of the dark and silent Night, Strike a cold Terror round my fainting Heart, That does presage some fatal Accident.
King. 'Tis in your cruel Eyes the Danger lies— Wou'd you receive me with that usual Tenderness, Which did express it self in every Smile, I should dismiss tin's Horror from my Face, And place again its native Calmness there; And all my Veins shall re-assume their Heat, And with a new and grateful Ardour beat.
Flor. Sir, all my Soul is taken up with fear, And you advance your Fate, by staying here— Fly, fly, this place of Death—if Abdelazer Shou'd find you here—all the Divinity About your sacred Person could not guard you.
King. Ah, my Florella, cease thy needless Fear, And in thy Soul let nothing reign but Love; Love, that with soft Desires may fill thy Eyes, And save thy Tongue the pain t' instruct my Heart, In the most grateful Knowledge Heaven can give me.
Flor. That Knowledge, Sir, wou'd make us both more wretched, Since you, I know, wou'd still be wishing on, And I shou'd grant, till we were both undone. And, Sir, how little she were worth your care, Cou'd part with all her honourable Fame, For an inglorious Life—short and despis'd—
King. Canst thou believe a Flame thy Eyes have kindled, Can urge me to an infamous pursuit?— No, my Florella, I adore thy Virtue, And none profane those Shrines, to whom they offer; —Say but thou lov'st—and I thus low will bow— [Kneels. And sue to thee, to be my Sovereign Queen? I'll circle thy bright Forehead with the Crowns Of Castile, Portugal, and Arragon; And all those petty Kingdoms, which do bow Their Tributary Knees to thy Adorer.
Flor. Ah, Sir! have you forgot my sacred Vow? All that I am, is Abdelazer's now.
King. By Heav'n, it was a sacrilegious Theft; But I the Treasure from his Breast will tear, And reach his Heart, though thou art seated there.
Flor. A Deed like that my Virtue wou'd undo, And leave a Stain upon your Glories too; A Sin, that wou'd my Hate, not Passion move; I owe a Duty, where I cannot love.
King. Thou think'st it then no Sin to kill thy King; For I must die, without thy Love, Florella.
Flor. How tamely, Sir, you with the Serpent play, Whose fatal Poison must your Life betray; And though a King, cannot divine your Fate; Kings only differ from the Gods in that.— See, Sir, with this—I am your Murderer made; [Holds up a Dagger. By those we love, we soonest are betray'd.
King. How! can that fair Hand acquaint it self with Death? —What wilt thou do, Florella?
Flor. Your Destiny divert, And give my Heart those Wounds design'd for yours. —If you advance, I'll give the deadly Blow.
King. Hold!—I command thee hold thy impious Hand, My Heart dwells there, and if you strike—I die.
Enter Queen, Alonzo, and Elvira.
Qu. Florella! arm'd against the King? [Snatches the Dagger and stabs her: the King rises. Oh Traitress!
King. Hold, hold, inhuman Murdress; What hast thou done, most barbarous of thy Sex! [Takes Flor. in his Arms.
Qu. Destroy'd thy Murdress,—and my too fair Rival. [Aside.
King. My Murdress!—what Devil did inspire thee With Thoughts so black and sinful? cou'd this fair Saint Be guilty of a Murder?—No, no, too cruel Mother, With her Eyes, her charming lovely Eyes, She might have kill'd, and her too virtuous Cruelty. —Oh my Florella! Sacred lovely Creature!
Flor. My Death was kind, since it prevented yours, And by that Hand, which sav'd mine from a Guilt. [Points to the Queen. —That Dagger I receiv'd of Abdelazer, To stab that Heart,—he said, that lov'd me best; But I design'd to overcome your Passion, And then to have vanquish'd Abdelazer's Jealousy: But finding you too faithful to be happy, I did resolve to die—and have my wish. —Farewel—my King—my Soul begins its flight, —And now—is hovering—in eternal—Night. [Dies.
King. She's gone—she's gone—her sacred Soul is fled To that Divinity, of which it is a part; Too excellent to inhabit Earthly Bodies.
Alon. Oh, Sir, you grieve too much, for one so foul.
King. What profane Breath was that pronounc'd her foul? Thy Mother's Soul, though turn'd into a Cherubim, Was black to hers—Oh, she was all divine. —Alonzo, was it thou?—her Brother!
Alon. When she was good, I own'd that Title, Sir.
King. Good!—by all the Gods, she was as chaste as Vestals, As Saints translated to Divine Abodes. I offer'd her to be my Queen, Alonzo, To share the growing Glories of my Youth; But uncorrupted she my Crown contemn'd, And on her Virtue's Guard stood thus defended. [Alon. weeps. —Oh my Florella! let me here lie fix'd, [Kneels. And never rise, till I am cold and pale As thou, fair Saint, art now—But sure She cou'd not die;—that noble generous Heart, That arm'd with Love and Honour, did rebate All the fierce Sieges of my amorous Flame, Might sure defend it self against those Wounds Given by a Woman's Hand,—or rather 'twas a Devil's. [Rises. —What dost thou merit for this Treachery? Thou vilest of thy Sex— But thou'rt a thing I have miscall'd a Mother, And therefore will not touch thee—live to suffer By a more shameful way;—but here she lies, Whom I, though dead, must still adore as living.
Alon. Sir, pray retire, there's danger in your stay; When I reflect upon this Night's Disorder, And the Queen's Art to raise my Jealousy; And after that my Sister's being murder'd, I must believe there is some deeper Plot, Something design'd against your sacred Person.
King. Alonzo, raise the Court, I'll find it, [Ex. Alonzo. Tho 'twere hid within my Mother's Soul.
Qu. My gentle Son, pardon my kind mistake, I did believe her arm'd against thy Life.
King. Peace, Fury! Not ill boding Raven Shrieks, Nor midnight Cries of murder'd Ghosts, are more Ungrateful, than thy faint and dull Excuses. —Be gone! and trouble not the silent Griefs, Which will insensibly decay my Life, Till like a Marble Statue I am fixt, Dropping continual Tears upon her Tomb. [Kneels and—weeps at Florella's Feet.
Abd. [Within]. Guard all the Chamber-Doors—Fire and Confusion Consume the Spanish Dogs—was I for this Sent to fetch back a Philip, and a Cardinal, To have my Wife abus'd?
Qu. Patience, dear Abdelazer.
Abd. Patience and I am Foes: where's my Florella? The King! and in Florella's Bed-Chamber! Florella dead too!— Rise, thou eternal Author of my Shame; Gay thing—to you I speak, [King rises. And thus throw off Allegiance.
Qu. Oh, stay your Fury, generous Abdelazer.
Abd. Away, fond Woman. [Throws her from him.
King. Villain, to me this Language?
Abd. To thee, young amorous King. How at this dead and silent time of Night, Durst you approach the Lodgings of my Wife?
King. I scorn to answer thee.
Abd. I'll search it in thy Heart then.
[They fight, Queen and Elv. run out crying Treason.
King. The Devil's not yet ready for his Soul, And will not claim his due.—Oh, I am wounded. [Falls.
Abd. No doubt on't, Sir, these are no Wounds of Love.
King. Whate'er they be, you might have spar'd 'em now, Since those Florella give me were sufficient: —And yet a little longer, fixing thus Thou'dst seen me turn to Earth, without thy aid. Florella!—Florella!—is thy Soul fled so far It cannot answer me, and call me on? And yet like dying Ecchoes in my Ears, I hear thee cry, my Love—I come—I come, fair Soul. —Thus at thy Feet—my Heart shall bleeding—lie. Who since it liv'd for thee—for thee—will die. [Dies.
Abd. So—thou art gone—there was a King but now, And now a senseless, dull, and breathless nothing. [A noise of fighting without. Enter Queen running.
Qu. Oh Heavens! my Son—the King, the King is kill'd!— Yet I must save his Murderer:—Fly, my Moor;
Alonzo, Sir, assisted by some Friends, Has set upon your Guards, And with resistless Fury is making hither.
Abd. Let him come on.
Enter Alonzo and others, led in by Osmin, Zarrack, and Moors.
Oh, are you fast? [Takes away their Swords.
Alon. What mean'st thou, Villain?
Abd. To put your Swords to better uses, Sir, Than to defend the cause of Ravishers.
Alon. Oh Heavens, the King is murder'd!
Abd. Look on that Object, Thy Sister and my Wife, who's doubly murder'd, First in her spotless Honour, then her Life.
Alon. Heaven is more guilty than the King in this.
Qu. My Lords, be calm; and since your King is murder'd. Think of your own dear Safeties; chuse a new King, That may defend you from the Tyrant's Rage.
Alon. Who should we chuse? Prince Philip is our King.
Abd. By Heaven, but Philip shall not be my King; Philip's a Bastard, and Traytor to his Country: He braves us with an Army at our Walls, Threatning the Kingdom with a fatal Ruin. And who shall lead you forth to Conquest now, But Abdelazer, whose Sword reap'd Victory, As oft as 'twas unsheath'd?—and all for Spain —How many Laurels has this Head adorn'd? Witness the many Battles I have won; In which I've emptied all my youthful Veins!— And all for Spain!—ungrateful of my Favours! —I do not boast my Birth, Nor will not urge to you my Kingdom's Ruin; But loss of Blood, and numerous Wounds receiv'd— And still for Spain!— And can you think, that after all my Toils, I wou'd be still a Slave?—to Bastard Philip too? That dangerous Foe, who with the Cardinal, Threatens with Fire and Sword.—I'll quench those Flames, Such an esteem I still preserve for Spain.
Alon. What means this long Harangue? what does it aim at?
Abd. To be Protector of the Crown of Spain, Till we agree about a lawful Successor.
Alon. Oh Devil!
Qu. We are betray'd, and round beset with Horrors; If we deny him this—the Power being his, We're all undone, and Slaves unto his Mercy.— Besides—Oh, give me leave to blush when I declare, That Philip is—as he has rendred him.— But I in love to you, love to my Spain, Chose rather to proclaim my Infamy, Than an ambitious Bastard should be crown'd.
Alon. Here's a fine Plot, What Devil reigns in Woman, when she doats? [Aside.
Rod. My Lords, I see no remedy but he must be Protector.
Alon. Oh, Treachery—have you so soon forgot The noble Philip, and his glorious Heir, The murder'd Ferdinand?— And, Madam, you so soon forgot a Mother's Name, That you wou'd give him Power that kill'd your Son?
Abd. The Modesty wherewith I'll use that Power, Shall let you see, I have no other Interest But what's intirely Spain's.—Restore their Swords, And he amongst you all who is dissatisfy'd, I set him free this minute.
Alon. I take thee at thy word— And instantly to Philip's Camp will fly. [Exit.
Abd. By all the Gods my Ancestors ador'd, But that I scorn the envying World shou'd think I took delight in Blood—I wou'd not part so with you. —But you, my Lords, who value Spain's Repose, Must for it instantly with me take Arms. Prince Philip, and the Cardinal, now ride Like Jove in Thunder; we in Storms must meet them. To Arms! to Arms! and then to Victory, Resolv'd to conquer, or resolv'd to die.
SCENE I. Abdelazer's Tent.
Enter Abdelazer, Osmin bearing his Helmet of Feathers, Zarrack with his Sword and Truncheon.
Abd. Come, Osmin, arm me quickly; for the Day Comes on apace, and the fierce Enemy Will take advantages by our delay.
Enter Queen and Elvira.
Qu. Oh, my dear Moor! The rude, exclaiming, ill-affected Multitude (Tempestuous as the Sea) run up and down, Some crying, kill the Bastard—some the Moor; These for King Philip,—those for Abdelazer.
Abd. Your Fears are idle,—blow 'em into Air. I rush'd amongst the thickest of their Crouds, And with the awful Splendor of my Eyes, Like the imperious Sun, dispers'd the Clouds. But I must combat now a fiercer Foe, The hot-brain'd Philip, and a jealous Cardinal.
Qu. And must you go, before I make you mine?
Abd. That's my Misfortune—when I return with Victory, And lay my Wreaths of Laurel at your Feet, You shall exchange them for your glorious Fetters.
Qu. How canst thou hope for Victory, when their Numbers So far exceed thy Powers?
Abd. What's wanting there, we must supply with Conduct. I know you will not stop at any thing That may advance our Interest, and Enjoyment.
Qu. Look back on what I have already done; And after that look forward with Assurance.
Abd. You then (with only Women in your Train) Must to the Camp, and to the Cardinal's Tent;— Tell him, your Love to him hath drawn you thither: Then undermine his Soul—you know the way on't. And sooth him into a Belief, that the best way To gain your Heart, is to leave Philip's Interest; Urge 'tis the Kingdom's safety, and your own; And use your fiercest Threats, to draw him to a Peace with me; Not that you love me, but for the Kingdom's good: Then in a Tent which I will pitch on purpose, Get him to meet me: He being drawn off, Thousands of Bigots (who think to cheat the World Into an Opinion, that fighting for the Cardinal is A pious Work) will (when he leaves the Camp) Desert it too.
Qu. I understand you, and more than I have time to be Instructed in, I will perform; and possibly Before you can begin, I'll end my Conquests.
Abd. 'Twill be a Victory worthy of your Beauty. —I must to Horse, farewel, my generous Mistress.
Qu. Farewel! and may thy Arms as happy prove, As shall my Art, when it dissembles Love.
SCENE II. Philip's Tent.
Enter Philip, Alonzo, and Guards.
Phil. 'Tis a sad Story thou hast told, Alonzo; Yet 'twill not make me shed one single Tear: They must be all of Blood that I will offer To my dear Brother's Ghost— But, gallant Friend, this Good his Ills have done, To turn thee over to our juster Interest, For thou didst love him once.
Alon. Whilst I believ'd him honest, and for my Sister's sake; But since, his Crimes have made a Convert of me.
Phil. Gods! is it possible the Queen should countenance His horrid Villanies?
Alon. Nay, worse than so,'tis thought she'll marry him.
Phil. Marry him! then here upon my Knees I vow, [Kneels. To shake all Duty from my Soul; And all that Reverence Children owe a Parent, Shall henceforth be converted into Hate. [Rises. —Damnation! marry him! Oh, I cou'd curse my Birth! This will confirm the World in their Opinion, That she's the worst of Women; That I am basely born too, (as she gives it out) That Thought alone does a just Rage inspire, And kindles round my Heart an active Fire.
Alan. A Disobedience, Sir, to such a Parent, Heaven must forgive the Sin, if this be one: —Yet do not, Sir, in Words abate that Fire, Which will assist you a more effectual way.
Phil. Death! I could talk of it an Age; And, like a Woman, fret my Anger high: Till like my Rage, I have advanc'd my Courage, Able to fight the World against my Mother.
Alan. Our Wrongs without a Rage, will make us fight, Wrongs that wou'd make a Coward resolute.
Phil. Come, noble Youth, Let us join both our several Wrongs in one, And from them make a solemn Resolution, Never to part our Interest, till this Moor, This worse than Devil Moor be sent to Hell.
Alon. I do.
Phil. Hark—hark—the Charge is sounded, let's to Horse, St. Jaques for the Right of Spain and me.
SCENE III. A Grave.
Drums and Trumpets afar off,—with noise of fighting at a distance: After a little while, enter Philip in a Rage.
Phil. Oh unjust Powers! why d'ye protect this Monster?— And this damn'd Cardinal, that comes not up With the Castilian Troops? curse on his formal Politicks— Enter Alonzo. —Alonzo, where's the Moor?
Alon. The Moor—a Devil—never did Fiend of Hell, Compell'd by some Magician's Charms, Break thro the Prison of the folded Earth With more swift Horrour, than this Prince of Fate Breaks thro our Troops in spite of Opposition.
Phil. Death! 'tis not his single Arm that works the Wonders, But our Cowardice—Oh, this Dog Cardinal!
Ant. Sound a Retreat, or else the Day is lost.
Phil. I'll beat that Cur to Death that sounds Retreat.
Sebast. Sound a Retreat.
Phil. Who is't that tempts my Sword?—continue the Alarm, Fight on Pell-mell—fight—kill—be damn'd—do any thing But sound Retreat—Oh, this damn'd Coward Cardinal! [Exeunt.
The noise of fighting near; after a little while enter Philip again.
Phil. Not yet, ye Gods! Oh, this eternal Coward!
Alon. Sir, bring up your Reserves, or all is lost; Ambition plumes the Moor, that makes him act Deeds of such Wonder, that even you wou'd envy them.
Phil. 'Tis well—I'll raise my Glories to that dazling height, Shall darken his, or set in endless Night.
SCENE IV. A Grove.
Enter Card. and Queen; the noise of a Battel continuing afar off all the Scene.
Qu. By all thy Love, by all thy Languishments, By all those Sighs and Tears paid to my Cruelty, By all thy Vows, thy passionate Letters sent, I do conjure thee, go not forth to fight: Command your Troops not to engage with Philip, Who aims at nothing but the Kingdom's ruin. —Fernando's kill'd—the Moor has gain'd the Power, A Power that you nor Philip can withstand; And is't not better he were lost than Spain, Since one must be a Sacrifice? Besides—if I durst tell it, There's something I cou'd whisper to thy Soul, Wou'd make thee blush at ev'ry single Good Thou'ast done that insolent Boy;—But 'tis not now A time for Stories of so strange a Nature,— Which when you know, you will conclude with me, That every Man that arms for Philip's Cause, Merits the name of Traitor.— Be wise in time, and leave his shameful Interest, An Interest thou wilt curse thy self for taking; Be wise, and make Alliance with the Moor.
Card. And, Madam, should I lay aside my Wrongs, Those publick Injuries I have receiv'd, And make a mean and humble Peace with him? —No, let Spain be ruin'd by our Civil Swords, E'er for its safety I forego mine Honour.—
Enter an Officer.
Offi. Advance, Sir, with your Troops, or we are lost.
Card. Give order—
Qu. That they stir not on their Lives; Is this the Duty that you owe your Country? Is this your Sanctity—and Love to me? Is't thus you treat the Glory I have offer'd To raise you to my Bed? To rule a Kingdom, be a Nation's Safety, To advance in hostile manner to their Walls; Walls that confine your Countrymen, and Friends, And Queen, to whom you've vow'd eternal Peace, Eternal Love? And will you court in Arms? Such rude Addresses wou'd but ill become you. No, from this hour renounce all Claims to me, Or Philip's Interest; for let me tell you, Cardinal, This Love, and that Revenge, are inconsistent.
Card. But, Madam—
Qu. No more—disband your Rebel Troops, And strait with me to Abdelazer's Tent, Where all his Claims he shall resign to you, Both in my self, the Kingdom, and the Crown: You being departed, thousands more will leave him, And you're alone the Prop to his Rebellion.
Sebast. Advance, advance, my Lord, with all your Force, Or else the Prince and Victory is lost, Which now depends upon his single Valour; Who, like some ancient Hero, or some God, Thunders amongst the thickest of his Enemies, Destroying all before him in such numbers, That Piles of Dead obstruct his passage to the living— Relieve him strait, my Lord, with our last Cavalry and Hopes.
Card. I'll follow instantly.— [Ex. Sebast.
Qu. Sir, but you shall not, unless it be to Death— Shall you preserve the only Man I hate, And hate with so much reason?—let him fall A Victim to an injur'd Mother's Honour. —Come, I will be obey'd—indeed I must—[Fawns on him.
Card. When you're thus soft, can I retain my Anger? Oh, look but ever thus—in spite of Injuries— I shall become as tame and peaceable, As are your charming Eyes, when dress'd in Love, Which melting down my Rage, leave me defenceless. —Ah, Madam, have a generous care of me, For I have now resign'd my Power to you.
Qu. What Shouts are these?
Sebast. My Lord, the Enemy is giving ground, And Philip's Arm alone sustains the day: Advance, Sir, and compleat the Victory. [Exit.
Qu. Give order strait, that a Retreat be sounded; And whilst they do so, by me conducted, We'll instantly to Abdelazer's Tent— Haste—haste, my Lord, whilst I attend you here. [Ex. severally. [Cardinal going out, is met by Philip.
Phil. Oh, damn your lazy Order, where have you been, Sir? —But 'tis no time for Questions, Move forward with your Reserves.
Card. I will not, Sir.
Phil. How, will not!
Card. Now to advance would be impolitick; Already by your desperate Attempts, You've lost the best part of our Hopes.
Phil. Death! you lye.
Card. Lye, Sir!
Phil. Yes, lye, Sir,—therefore come on, Follow the desperate Reer-Guard, which is mine, And where I'll die, or conquer—follow my Sword The bloody way it leads, or else, by Heaven, I'll give the Moor the Victory in spite, And turn my Force on thee— Plague of your Cowardice—Come, follow me.
SCENE V. The Grove.
As Philip is going off, he is overtook by Alonzo, Antonio, Sebastian, and other Officers: At the other side some Moors, and other of Abdelazer's Party, enter and fall on Philip and the rest—the Moors are beaten off—one left dead on the Stage.—
Enter Abdelazer, with Roderigo and some others.
Abd. Oh, for more Work—more Souls to send to Hell! —Ha, ha, ha, here's one going thither,—Sirrah—Slave Moor—who kill'd thee?—how he grins—this Breast, Had it been temper'd and made proof like mine, It never wou'd have been a Mark for Fools.
Abd. going out: Enter Philip, Alonzo, Sebastian, Antonio, and Officers, as passing over the Stage.
Phil. I'll wear my Sword to th' Hilt, but I will find The Subject of my Vengeance.— Moor, 'tis for thee I seek, where art thou, Slave?—
Abd. Here, Philip. [Abd. turns.
Phil. Fate and Revenge, I thank thee.—
Abd. Why—thou art brave, whoe'er begot thee.
Phil. Villain, a King begot me.
Abd. I know not that, But I'll be sworn thy Mother was a Queen, And I will kill thee handsomly for her sake.
[Offers to fight, their Parties hinder them.
Alon. Hold—hold, my Prince.
Osm. Great Sir, what mean you? [To Abd. The Victory being yours, to give your Life away On one so mad and desperate. [Their Parties draw.