Графични страници
PDF файл
ePub

(For fo by certain figns I knew) had met
Already, ere my best speed could prevent,
The aidless innocent Lady his wifht prey ;
Who gently ask'd if he had seen such two,
Supposing him fome neighbour villager :
Longer I durst not stay, but soon I guess'd
Ye were the two she meant, with that I sprung
Into swift flight, till I had found you here.
But farther know I not. T. Bro. O night and shades,
· How are ye join'd with Hell in triple knot,
Against th' unarmed weakness of one Virgin
Alone, and helpless ! Is this the confidence [Atill,
You gave me, Brother? Eld. Bro. Yes, and keep it
Lean on it safely; not a period
Shall be unsaid for me: against the threats
Of malice or of forcery, or that power,
Which erring men call Chance, this I hold firm,
Virtue may be assail'd, but never hurt,
Surpriz'd by unjust force, but not inthrall’d;
Yea eren that, which mischief meant moft harm,
Shall in the happy trial prove most glory.
But evil on itself shall back recoil,
And mix no more with goodness, when at last
Gather'd like scum, and settl'd to itself,
It thall be in eternal restless change
Self-fed, and self-consumed ; if this fail,
The pillar'd firmament is rottenness, [on:
And earth's base built on stubble. But come, let's
Against.th opposing will and arm of Heavin,
May never this just Sword be lifted up;
But for that damn'd Magician, let kim be girt
K

With

With all the griefly legions that troop
Under the footy flag of Acheron,
Harpyes and Hydras, or all the monstrous forms
*Twixt Africa and Inde, I'll find him out,
And force him to restore his purchase back,
Or drag him by the curls to a foul death,
Curs'd as his life.

Spir. Alas! good vent'rous Youth,
I love thy courage yet, and bold Emprise,
But here thy Sword can do thee little stead;
Far other arms, and other weapons must
Be those, that quell the might of hellish Charms :
He with his bare wand can unthread thy joints,
And crumble all thy linews.

Eld. Bro. Why, prithee, Shepherd,
How durft thou then thyself approach fo near,
As to make this Relation ?

Spir. Care and utmost shifts
How to secure the Lady from surprisal,
Brought to my mind a certain Shepherd Lad,
Of small regard to see to, yet well skill'd
In every virtuous Plant and healing Herb,
That spreads her" verdant leaf to th' morning ray :
He lov'd me well, and oft would beg me fing,
Which when I did, he on the tender grass
Would fit, and hearken ev'n to extafie,
And in requital ope his leathern scrip,
And thew me simples of a thousand names,
Telling their strange and vigorous faculties.
Amongst the rest a small unsightly root,
But of diving effect, he cull'd me out;

The

[ocr errors]

me,

[ocr errors]

The leaf was darkish, and had prickles on it,
But in another Country, as he said,
Bore a bright golden Flower, but in this foil
Unknown, and like efteem'd, and the dull Swain
Treads on it daily with his clouted Moon,
And yet more med'cinal is it than that Moly
That Hermes once to wise Ulysses gave;
He call'd it Hæmony, and gave

it
And bad me keep it as of Sov'reign use
'Gainst all inchantments, mildew, blaft or dame,
Or gaftly furies apparition.
I purs'd it up, but little reckoning made,
Till now that this extremity compellid,
But now I find it true; for by this means
I knew the foul Inchanter, tho' disguis’d,
Enter'd the very lime-twigs of his spells,
And yet came off: if you have this about you,
(As I will give you when we go) you may
Boldly assault the Necromancer's Hall;
Where if he be, with dauntless hardihood,
And brandisht blade rush on him, break his glass,
And shed the luscious liquor on the ground;
But seize his wand, though he and his curst crew
Fierce sign of Battle make, and menace high,
Or like the Sons of Vulcan vomit smoak;
Yet will they soon retire, if he but shrink.

Eld. Bro. Tbyrfis, lead on apace, I'll follow thee;
And some good Angel bear a shield before us,

[ocr errors]

Tbe

*Tbe Scene changes to a flately Palace, set out with

all manner of deliciousness: Soft Mufick, Tables Spread with all dainties. Comus appears with bis rabble, and the Lady set in an incbanted Chair, to wbom be offers bis Glass, wbicb pobe puts by, and goes

about to rise. Comus. Nay, Lady, fit; if I but wave this Wand, Your nerves are all chain'd up in Alabaster, And you a Statue, or, as Dapbne was, Root-bound, that fled Apollo.

La. Fool, do not boast; Thou canst not touch the freedom of my mind With all thy Charms, although this corporal rind Thou hast immanacled, while Heav'n fees good.

Co. Why are you vext, Lady? why do you frown? Here dwell no frowns, nor anger ; from these gates Sorrow flies far : See! here be all the pleasures That fancy ean beget on youthful thoughts, When the fresh blood grows lively, and returns Brisk as the April buds in Primrose-season. And first behold this cordial Julep here, That fames and dances in his cryftal bounds, With spirits of balm, and fragrant Syrups mixt. Not that Nepentes, which the Wife of Tbone, In Egyp: gave to Yove-born Helena, Is of such power to stir up jox as this, To life so friendly, or so cool to thirst. Why should you be so cruel to yourself, And to those dainty limbs, which Nature lent For gentle dlage, and soft delicacy?

But

But you invert the Cov'nants of her trust,
And harshly deal, like an ill borrower,
With that which you receiv'd on other terms,
Scorning the unexempt condition,
By which all mortal frailty must sublift,
Refreshment after toil, ease after pain,
That have been tir'd all day without repast,
And timely rest have wanted: but, fair Virgin,
This will restore all foon.

La. 'Twill not, false traitor,
'Twill not restore the truth and honesty,
That thou hast banisht from thy tongue with lyes,
Was this the cottage, and the safe abode
Thou told'ft me of? What grim aspects are there,
These owly-headed Monsters ? Mercy guard me!
Hence with thy brew'd inchantments, foul deceiver.
Haft thou betray'd my credulous Innocence
With visor'd fallhood, and base forgery,
And would'st thou seek again to trap me here
With lickerith baits, fit to insnare a brute ?
Were it a draught for Juno, when she banquets,
I would not taste thy treasonous offer : none
But such as are good men can give good things,
And that, which is not good, is not delicious
To a well-govern'd and wise appetite.

Co. O foolishness of men! that lend their ears
To those budge Doctors of the Stoic Fur ;
And fetch their precepts from the Cynic Tub,
Praising the lean and fallow Abftinence.
Wherefore did Nature pour her bounties forth
With such a full and unwithdrawing hand,

Covering

[ocr errors]

K 3

« ПредишнаНапред »