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being gratified by no return, they attempt to resort to force, but are prevented by the prowess of Zelmane, who despatches the two brothers of Anaxius, and enters into an engagement with Anaxius himself. The following extract is vividly descriptive of all the fury and bustle of the battle.
“ Pyrocles, whose soule might well be separated from his body, but never alienated from the remembring of what was comely, if at the first he did a little apprehend the dangerousnesse of his adversarie, whom once before he had something tried, and now perfectly saw, as the verie picture of forcible furie: yet was that apprehension quickly stayed in him, rather strengthning than weakning his vertue by that wrestling; like wine, growing the stronger by being moved. So that they both, prepared in hearts and able in hands, did honour solitarinesse there with such a combate, as might have demanded, as a right of fortune, whole armies of beholders. But no beholders needed there, where manhood blew the trumpet, and satisfaction did whet as much as glorie. There was strength against nimblenesse; rage against resolution ; furie against vertue; confidence against courage; pride against noblenesse; love in both breeding mutuall hatred, and desire of revenging; the injuries of his brothers' slaughter to Anaxius, being like Philoclea's captivitie to Pyrocles. Who had seene the one, would have thought nothing could have resisted : who had markt the other, would have marvelled that the other had so long resisted. But like two contrary tides, eyther of which are able to carrie worlds of ships, and men upon them, with such swiftnesse, as nothing seemes able to withstand them: yet meeting one another, with mingling their watrie forces, and struggling together, it is long to say whether streame gets the victorie. So between these, if Pallas had been there, she could scarcely have told, whether she had nursed better in the feats of armes. The Irish grey-hound against the English mastiffe; the sword-fish against the whale; the rhinoceros against the elephant; might be models, and but models of this combate.”—p. 326.
Here occurs a chasm in the manuscript of Sir Philip Sidney, and we are not informed how the combat between Zelmane and Anaxius ended, nor by what means the two princesses are restored to their father, or when Dorus again returns to the service of his old master Dametas.
The continuation of the story commences with a meeting of Zelmane and Dorus;
“sitting downe together among the sweet flowers, whereof that place was very plentifull, under the pleasant shade of a broad-leaved sycamor, they recounted one to another their strange pilgrimage of passions, omitting nothing which open-hearted friendship is wont to say forth, where there is cause to communicate both joyes and sorrowes; for, indeed, there is no sweeter taste of friendship, than the coupling of soules in this mutuallity either of condoling or comforting: where the oppressed mind finds itselfe not altogether miserable, since, it is sure of one which is feelingly sorry for his misery : and the joyful spends not his joy, either alone, or there where it may be envied: but may freely send it to such a well grounded object, from whence hee shall bee sure to receive a sweet reflection of the same joy, and, as in a cleere mirrour of sincere good will, see a lively picture of his own gladnesse.”—p. 347.
Dorus informs his friend, that the Princess Pamela has, at length, consented to reward the fidelity of her lover, to fly with him to Thessaly, of which he was the prince, and there become his bride; when it is agreed, Zelmane or Pyrocles shall follow as soon as he prevails upon Philoclea, who had now become acquainted with his real character, to accompany him. To facilitate their flight, Dametas and his family are despatched on fools' errands out of the way; and taking advantage of their absence, Dorus escapes with Pamela, and, at length, reaches a forest, where Pamela, fatigued with her journey, composes herself to rest. Here we must leave them for a while, little expecting the calamities which are ready to befall them.
In the mean time, Pyrocles, who, under the character of Zelmane, is hard bested between the doting love of Basilius, and the raging jealousy of Gynecia, in order to appease the latter, who threatens, if slighted, to betray his disguise, finds it necessary to pretend compliance with her wishes; and, accordingly, appoints to meet her at midnight in a cave in the forest. In the same place, he makes an assignation, also, with Basilius, and he, as well as Gynecia, are caught in the snare, and meet each other at the place of appointment, without discovering, till morning, the fraud that had been practised upon them. Gynecia, on her discovery of it, resolves to make the best use of her situation, and charges Basilius with his infidelity, which, she tells him, has thus obliged her to follow him to his haunts, and disappoint his purpose. In the midst of her reproaches, Basilius happens to meet with a cup brought by Gynecia, in which was contained a potion, which she had designed to administer to Zelmane ; and, being thirsty, quaffs it off, which he has no sooner done than he falls down, to all appearance deprived of life.
Pyrocles, having thus eluded his tormentors, now bends his footsteps towards the apartment of the Princess Philoclea, whom he finds uttering complaints against the air of coldness and desertion which he had been obliged to put on to deceive the jealousy of Gynecia. Of his fidelity, he soon re-assures Philoclea, but has the mortification to find her, from the anguish she had sustained, utterly incapable of taking advantage of the opportunity of escape which presented itself. At this crisis, Dametas returns from the quest about which Dorus had sent him, and finds the Princess Pamela escaped. Half mad with
surprise and fear, Dametas flies to the apartment of Philoclea to
prisoner is destined to be added to these; and he is, Musidorus, whom we left with Pamela, on his journey to the nearest seaport, designing to embark with her from thence to Thessaly. While they are on their way, they are met by“ a rascal companie," a part of those rebels who came, in tumultuous array, to offer violence to Basilius, but were prevented and dispersed by the two princes. Having no hope of pardon, they had wandered for a long time in the woods, and, at length, by an unfortunate chance, lighted upon Musidorus and Pamela, who were immediately recognized by the rabble, and suspected to be fugitives. Partly instigated by the desire of revenging themselves on Musidorus, and partly actuated by the hope of procuring pardon for their late offence, they resolve to capture the lovers, and carry them back to the king. By the stratagem of one of the gang, Musidorus is taken prisoner, and unwillingly obliged to retrace his footsteps to the royal habitation. Here he is delivered into the hands of Philanax, who, overjoyed to gain a fresh prey, whom he considers as not less deserving of punishment than Pyrocles and Gynecia, for attempting to carry away the heiress of the throne, commits Musidorus to the same confinement as his friend had before been consigned to, and already dooms them, in imagination, to tortures and to death. Philanax, though loyal and faithful to his dead master, is cruel and ambitious : perceiving that the two princes would be obstacles in his road to greatness, he determines to remove them out of his way, and breathes against them nothing but inextinguishable hate. His appears to be a character compounded of mixed and opposite qualities; yet, unfortunately for his prisoners, both the good and evil principles of his mind equally serve to spur him on to their destruction. In vain, the Princess Pamela vindicates her right of choice, and threatens him with her future vengeance, when possessed of the throne of Arcadia : he determines to prosecute the severity of his vengeance, and rather, if compelled, to put them to death privately and without trial, than suffer them to escape. All of the Arcadian noblemen are, however, not so relentless as Philanax: Kalander, the old host of Musidorus, uses all his endeavours to procure their liberation, and, winning over several others to his side, causes a diversion in favour of the prisoners, till, at last, both sides are almost prepared to second their opinions with force.
While this tumult is continuing, intelligence is brought of the arrival of Euarchus, King of Macedon, who had come for the purpose of visiting his old friend Basilius; and, on learning his unhappy fate, had sent to the Arcadian council, requesting them to allow him to remain and be present at the funeral of his friend. The reputation of Euarchus for wisdom and justice is so universally established, that he appears to Philanax to be the change the never-changing justice. No, no, Pyrocles and Musidorus, I preferre you much before my life, but I preferre justice as farre before you : while you did like your selves, my body should willingly have been your shield, but I cannot keep you from the effects of your own doing: nay, I cannot in this case acknowledge you for mine; for never had I shepheard to my nephew, nor ever had woman to my son; your vices have degraded you from being princes, and have disanullid your birthright. Therefore, if there be any thing left in you of princely vertue, shew it in constant suffering, that your unprincely dealing hath purchased unto you. For my part I must tell you, you have forced a father to rob himselfe of his children. Doe you, therefore, O, Philanax, and you my other lords of this countrey, see the judgement be rightly performed, in time, place, and manner, as before appointed. With that, though hee would have refrained them, a man might perceive the teares drop downe his long white beard.”—p. 479.
The princes intercede for each other, but Euarchus is immoveable. At this juncture, the body of Basilius, which had been placed near the seat of judgment during the trial, is seen to move, and he regains animation, having recovered from the effects of the draught he had imbibed, which, in reality, was only a sleeping potion. The sequel of the story may easily be conceived. The fame of Gynecia is cleared up by the asseverations of her husband, and she is considered as a paragon of fidelity and conjugal love. Basilius, effectually cured of his passion for Zelmane, marries his daughters to the two princes, who, after many rejoicings, depart to their respective kingdoms, . and thus the oracle is accomplished.
Such is the outline of this interesting story: to continue and supply which, many attempts were made by different authors during the period when its celebrity continued, and brought with it the usual concomitant of familiar acquaintance, the desire of imitation. Amongst these, Sir William Alexander, afterwards Earl of Sterling, may be mentioned, who has attempted to supply the defect existing in the third book, as an imitator not unworthy of Sidney. This performance, as well as the other continuations, is a proof, from the exactness with which the style of Sidney is copied, how great a portion of attention had been paid to its model, and what labour and care were exerted to rival the excellencies of its original. All these attempts, indeed, are, as good imitations, deserving of praise ; and, perhaps, that of Johnstoun is the best, but, like all other imitations, they want the spirit of originality; and, however closely they resemble their precursor in its outward accompaniments, have little of its peculiar and inward character.
The modernization of the Arcadia, by Mrs. Stanley, has little to recommend it. With most meritorious industry she has managed, with its occasional quaintnesses and conceits, to re