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For yielding to thy nature: and there's time 'Tis most strange! Yet for thee to escape hence.
MYRRHA. But that so rare, my Pania, as thou think'st it.
Shall I light In the meantime, live thou.-Farewell! the pile One of the torches which lie heap'd beneath Is ready
The ever-burning lamp that burns without,
Before Baal's shrine, in the adjoining hall ?
Is that thy answer? His death.
Thou shalt see.
(Exit MYRRHA. Me to the dust already. Get thee hence
SARDANAPALUS (solus). Enrich thee.
She's firm. My fathers! whom I will rejoin,
It may be, purified by death from some
of the gross stains of too material being,
I would not leave your ancient first abode
To the defilement of usurping bondmen;
If I have not kept your inheritance
As ye bequeath'd it, this bright part of it,
Your treasure, your abode, your sacred relics
Of arms, and records, monuments, and spoils,
In which they would have revell’d, I bear with me Remember, what you leave you leave the slaves
To you in that absorbing element, Who slew me: and when you have borne away
Which most personifies the soul, as leaving All safe off to your boats, blow one long blast
The least of matter unconsumed before Upon the trumpet as you quit the palace.
Its fiery working :--and the light of this The river's brink is too remote, its stream
Most royal of funereal pyres shall be Too loud at present to permit the echo
Not a mere pillar form’d of cloud and flame,
a To reach distinctly from its banks. Then fly,
A beacon in the horizon for a day, And as you sail, turn back; but still keep on
And then a mount of ashes, but a light Your way along the Euphrates: if you reach
To lesson ages, rebel nations, and The land of Paphlagonia, where the queen
Voluptuous princes. Time shall quench full many is safe with my three sons in Cotta's court,
A people's records, and a hero's acts; Say what you saw at parting, and request
Sweep empire after empire, like this first That she remember what I said at one
Of empires, into nothing ; but even then
Shall spare this deed of mine, and hold it up
A problem few dare imitate, and none
Despise-but, it may be, avoid the life
Which led to such a consummation.
and a Cup in the other.
And the cup ?
'T is my country's custom to
To make libations amongst men. I've not In the hands of the deities, if such
Forgot the custom; and, although alone, Tere be: I shall know soon. Farewell—farewell. Will drain one draught in memory of many (Exeunt Pania and the Soldiers. A joyous banquet past.
(SARDANAPALUs takes the cup, and after drink These men were honest: it is comfort still
ing and tinkling the reversed cup, as a drop That our last looks shall be on loving faces.
And this libation
I satiated thee with peace and joys; and this
Is my reward! and now I owe thee nothing,
Not even a grave.
[He mounts the pile Of human sword in a fiend's hand; the other
Now, Myrrha !
Art thou ready?
As the torch in thy grasp.
(MYRRHA fires the pile. And dost thou think A Greek girl dare not do for love that which
'Tis fired! I come. An Indian widow braves for custom?
(As MYRRHA springs forward to throw herself SARDANAPALUS.
into the flames, the Curtain falls.
Note 1. Page 291, line 19.
And thou, my own loniao Myrrha.
“ The Ionian name had been still more comprehenSARDANAPALUS.
sive, having included the Achaians and the Bæotians, True, the commingling fire will mix our ashes. who, together with those to whom it was afterwards MYRRIIA.
confined, would make nearly the whole of the Greek And pure as is my love to thee, shall they,
nation, and among the orientals it was always the genPurged from the dross of earth, and earthly passion, eral name for the Greeks.”—Mutford's Greece, vol. i. Mix pale with thine. A single thought yet irks me.
Note 2. Page 294, line 1.
The king, and son of Anacyodaraxes,
In one day built Anchialus and Tarsus.
Eat, drink and love; the rest 's not worth a hillip." The dust of both into one urn.
“For this expedition, he took not only a small chosen SARDANAPALUS.
body of the phalanx, but all his light troops. In the The better!
first day's march he reached Anchialus, a town said to Rather let them be borne abroad upon
have been founded by the king of Assyria, Sardanapalus. The winds of heaven, and scatter'd into air, The fortifications, in their magnitude and extent, still Than be polluted more by human hands
in Arrian's time, bore the character of greatness, which Of slaves and traitors; in this blazing palace, the Assyrians appear singularly to have affected in works And its enormous walls of reeking ruin,
of the kind. A monument, representing Sardanapalus, We leave a nobler monument than Egypt
was found there, warranted by an inscription in Assyrian Hath piled in her brick mountains o'er dead kings, characters, of course in the old Assyrian language, which Or karne, for none know whether those proud piles the Greeks, whether well or ill, interpreted thus: “SarBe for their monarch, or their ox.god Apis :
danapalus, son of Anacyndaraxes, in one day founded So much for monuments that have forgotten
Anchialus and Tarsus. Eat, drink, play: all other Their very record!
human joys are not worth a fillip.” Supposing this
version nearly exact (for Arrian says it was not quite so) Then farewell, thou earth! whether the purpose has not been to invite to civil order And loveliest spot of earth! farewell, Ionia ! a people disposed to turbulence, rather than to recom Be thou still free and beautiful, and far
mend immoderate luxury, may perhaps reasonably be Aloof from desolation! My last prayer
questioned. What, indeed, could be the object of a Was for thee, my last thoughts, save one, were of thee! king of Assyria in founding such towns in a country so
distant from his capital, and so divided from it by an SARDANAPALUS. And that?
immense extent of sandy deserts and lofty mountains, and, still more, how the inhabitants could be at once in
circumstances to abandon themselves to the intemperate (The trumpet of Pania sounds without. joys which their prince has been supposed to have recomSARDANAPALUS.
mended, is not obvious; but it may deserve observation Hark!
that, in that line of coast, the southern of Lesser Asia,
ruins of cities, evidently of an age after Alexander, yet Now !
barely named in history, at this day astonish the advenSARDANAPALUS.
turous traveller by their magnificence and elegance. Adieu, Assyria!
Amid the desolation which, under a singularly barbarian I loved thee well, my own, my father's land, government, has, for so many centuries, been daily And better as my country than my kingdom. spreading in the finest countries of the globe, whecher
more from soil and climate, or from opportunities for by a revolution, obloquy on his memory would follow commerce, extraordinary means must have been found of course from the policy of his successors and their for communities to flourish there, whence it may seem partisans. that the measures of Sardanapalus were directed by juster “The inconsistency of traditions concerning Sardanews than have been commonly ascribed to him; but napalus is striking in Diodorus's account of him."thal monarch having been the last of a dynasty, ended | Mitford's Greece, vol. ix. pp. 311, 312, and 313.
The Two Foscari;
A HISTORICAL TRAGEDY.
The folher softens, but the governor's resolved.
But the poor wretch has suffered beyond nature's
Perhaps without committing any.
But he avow'd the letter to the Duke BARBARIGO, 4 Senator.
of Milan, and his sufferings half alone for
We shall see.
When they are
Extinct, you may say this.—Let's into council.
Yet pause—the number of our colleagues is not
Complete yet; two are wanting ere we can
And the chief judge, the Doge?
No-he. The Question.
With more than Roman fortitude, is ever
First at the board in this unhappy process
Against his last and only son.
LOREDANO. Rejoin our colleagues in the council, and
Will nothing move you?
LOREDANO. And may die under it if now repeated.
Feels he, think you :
'To the ducal chambers, as he pass’d the threshold, The waters through them; but this son and stre
Might move the elements to pause, and yet
Must I on hardily like them-Oh! would
Lo, where he comes !-Be still, my heart! they are The work is half your own.
Thy foes, must be thy victims: wilt thou beat
For those who almost broke thee?
Enter Guards, with young Foscari as prisone, etc,
Let him rest.
I thank thee, friend, I'm feeble;
But thou may'st stand reproved. Should never deem himself a sovereign till
GUARD. The death of Peter Loredano, both
I'll stand the hazard. The brothers sicken'd shortly :-he is sorereign.
That's kind :-I nieet some pity, but no mercy ;
This is the first.
And might be the last, did they
Who rule behold us.
BARBARIGO (advancing to the guard).
There is one who does :
Nor thy accuser; though the hour is past,
Wait their last summons-I am of “the Ten,"
And waiting for that summons, sanction you
Even by my presence: when the last call sounds
We'll in together.-Look well to the prisoner ! Alike made difficult; but I have such
JACOPO FOSCARI. of the first, as shall make the second needless.
What voice is that ?—'tis Barbarigo's! Ah!
Our house's and one of my few judges.
To balance such a foe, if such there be,
Thy father sits amongst thy judges.
Then deem not the laws too harsh (The wealthy practice of our highest nobles),
Which yield so much indulgence to a sire “Doge Foscari, my debtor for the deaths
As to allow his voice in such high matter Of Marco and Pietro Loredano,
As the state's safety-
And his son's. I'm faint ;
Let me approach, I pray you, for a breath
Of air, yon window which o'erlooks the waters.
Enter an Officer, who whispers BARBARIGO.
BARBARIGO (to the guard).
Let him approach. I must not speak with him
Further than thus; I have transgress'd my duty
In this brief parley, and must now redeem it the Hall of the Council of Ten).
(Exit BARBARIGL You see the number is complete.
(Guard conducting Jacopo Foscari to the windoro. Follow me.
There, sir, 't is
Like a boy-Oh Venice!
GUARD. Who shricks wahin its riven ribs, as gush
And your limbs ?
I ask no more than a Venetian grave-
Enter an Officer,
Bring in the prisoner !
Signor, you hear the order. Plebeian as patrician, cheer'd us on
JACOPO FOSCARI. With dazzling smiles, and wishes audible,
Ay, I am used to such a summons; 't is And waving kerchiefs, and applauding hands, The third time they have tortured me:—then lend me Even to the goal!-How many a time have I
(To the Guard Cloven, with arm still lustier, breast more daring, The wave all roughen'd; with a swimmer's stroke
Take mine, sir ; 't is my duty to Flinging the billows back from my drench'd hair,
Be nearest to your person. And laughing from my lip the audacious brine,
JACOPO FOSCARI. Which kiss'd it like a wine-cup, rising o'er
You !-you are he The waves as they arose, and prouder still
Who yesterday presided o'er my pangs-
Away!-I'll walk alone.
you please, signor; My way to shells and sea-weed, all unseen
The sentence was not of my signing, but By those above, till they wax'd fearful; then
I dared not disobey the Council, when
Bade thee stretch me on their horrid engine. The long-suspended breath, again I spurn'd
I pray thee touch ine not-that is, just now; The foam which broke around me, and pursued
The time will come they will renew that order, My track like a sea-bird.—I was a boy then. But keep off from me till 't is issued. As
I look upon thy hands, my curdling limbs Be a man now; there never was more need
Quiver with the anticipated wrenching, Of manhood's strength.
And the cold drops strain through my brow as if JACOPO FOSCARI (looking from the lattice).
But onward-1 have borne it-I can bear it.-
How looks my father ?
With his wonted aspect.
So doth the earth, and sky, the blue of ocean,
The brightness of our city, and her domes, Which bowlid about my Candiote dungeon, and
The mirth of her Piazza, even now Made my heart sick.
Its merry hum of nations pierces here,
Even here, into these chambers of the unknown I see the colour comes
Who govern, and the unknown and the unnumber'd Back to your cheek: Heaven send you strength to bear Judged and destroy'd in silence all things wear What more may be imposed !—I dread to think on't. The self-same aspect, to my very sire !
Nothing can sympathize with Foscari, They will not banish me again ?-No-no,
Not even a Foscari.—Sir, I attend you. Let them wring on; I am strong yet.
(Exeunt Jacopo Foscari, Officer, evo
Enter MEMMO and another Senator.
Confess, And the rack will be spared you.
He's gone-we are too late :-think you "the Ten'
Will sit for any length of time to-day?
They say the prisoner is most obdurate,
Persisting in his first avowal; but
More I know not.
Let them do so, So I be buried in my birth-place: better
And that is much; the secrets Be ashes here than aught that lives elsewhere. of
yon terrific chamber are as hidden
From us, the premier nobles of the state,
Save the wonted rumours, Which persecutes me; but my native earth Which (like the tales of spectres that are rue Will take me as a mother to her arms,
Near ruin'd buildings) never have been proved,