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A TRAGEDY, IN FIVE ACTS.
Remorse is as the heart in which it grows :
If that be gentle, it drops balmy dews
It is a poison-tree that, pierced to the inmost,
Weeps only tears of poison.
And of a brother,
, FAMILIARS OF THE INQUISITION.
To save him?—Hear me, friend! I have yet to tell theo Nломі. .
That this same life, which he conspired to take, MOORS, SERVANTS, etc.
Himself once rescued from the angry flood,
And at the imminent hazard of his own.
Add too my oath-
You have thrice told already the civil wars against the Moors
, and during the The years of absence and of secrecy, heat of the persecution which raged against them, To which a forced oath bound you: if in truth shortly after the edict which forbade the wearing A suborn'd murderer have the power to dictate of Moresco apparel under pain of death.
A binding oath
My long captivity
Left me no choice: the very Wish 100 languish'd
With the fond Hope that nursed it; the sick babe
But (more than all) Teresa's perfidy;
The assassin's strong assurance, when no interest,
No motive could have tempted him to falsehood :
In the first pangs of his awaken'd conscience,
When with abhorrence of his own black purpose
The murderous weapon, pointed at my breast, Don Alvar, wrapt in a Boal-cloak, and ZULIMEZ Fell from his palsied hand(a Moresco), both as just landed
Heavy presumption ! No sound, no face of joy to welcome us!
It weigh'd not with me-Hark! I will tell thee all: My faithful Zulimez, for one brief moment
As we pass'd by, I bade thee mark the base Let me forget my anguish and their crimes.
Of yonder cliff-
That rocky seat you mean,
Shaped by the billows ?-
There Teresa met me, Thy sands with filial awe, land of my fathers !
The morning of the day of my departure.
Fell from the kindling east aslant upon us,
And, blending with the blushes on her cheek, And let the guilty meet the doom of guilt!
Suffused the tear-drops there with rosy light.
There seem'd a glory round us, and Teresa
The angel of the vision ! [Then wilh agitation Remember, Zulimez! I am his brother:
Hadst thou seen
How in each motion her most innocent soul
Beam'd forth and brighten'd, thou thyself wouldst ZULIMEZ.
tell me, Nobly-minded Alvar! This sure but gives his guilt a blacker dye.
Guilt is a thing impossible in her!
She must be innocent!
ZULIMEZ (with a sigh).
Proceed, my Lord!
Now to the cave beneath the vaulted rock, A portrait which she had procured by stealth Where having shaped you to a Moorish chiestain, (For ever then it seems her heart foreboded
I will seek our mariners; and in the dusk Or knew Ordonio's moody rivalry),
Transport whate'er we need to the small dell A portrait of herself with thrilling hand
In the Alpuxarras—there where Zagri lived. She tied around my neck, conjuring me
ALVAR. With earnest prayers, that I would keep it sacred I know it well: it is the obscurest haunt To my own knowledge: nor did she desist, Of all the mountains- (Both stand listening Till she had won a solemn promise from me,
Voices at a distance! That (save my own) no eye should e'er behold it Let us away!
[Ereunt. Till my return. Yet this the assassin knew, Knew that which none but she could have disclosed. ZULIMEL
Enter TERESA and VALDEZ.
My own life wearied me!
I hold Ordonio dear; he is your son With mine own hand I had thrown off the burthen.
And Alvar's brother. That Voice, which quell’d me, calm’d me: and I
Love him for himself, The Belgic states: there join'd the better cause ;
Nor make the living wretched for the dead. And there too fought as one that courted death! Wounded, I fell among the dead and dying, In death-like trance : à long imprisonment follow'd. I mourn that you should plead in vain, Lord Valdez; 'The fullness of my anguish by degrees
But heaven hath heard my vow, and I remain
Faithful to Alvar, be he dead or living.
Heaven knows with what delight I saw your loves, Night after night, she visited my sleep,
And could my heart's blood give him back to thee, Now as a saintly sufferer, wan and tearful, I would die smiling. But these are idle thoughts, Now as a saint in glory beckoning to me!
Thy dying father comes upon my soul Yes, still, as in contempt of proof and reason,
With that same look, with which he gave thee to ne, I cherish the fond faith that she is guiltless ! I held thee in my arms a powerless babe, Flear then my fix'd resolve: I'll linger here While thy poor mother with a mute entreaty In the disguise of a Moresco chieftain
Fix'd her faint eyes on mine. Ah not for this, The Moorish robes ?
That I should let thee feed thy soul with gloom,
And with slow anguish wear away thy life,
The victim of a useless constancy.
I must not see thee wretched. Secrete the boat there.
There are woes Above all, the picture
Il-barter'd for the garishness of joy ! Of the assassination
If it be wretched with an untired eye
To watch those skiey tints, and this green ocean;
Or in the sultry hour beneath some rock,
My hair dishevell’d by the pleasant sea-breeze,
To shape sweet visions, and live o'er again
All past hours of delight! If it be wretched
To watch some bark, and fancy Alvar there, If possible, alone too. This was her wanted walk, To go through each minutest circunstance And this the hour; her words, her very looks
Of the blest meeting, and to frame adventures Will acquit her or convict.
Most terrible and strange, and hear him tell them;
* (As once I knew a crazy Moorish maid Will they not know you? And o'er the smooth spring in the mountain cleft
Who drest her in her buried lover's clothes, With your aid, friend, I shall unfearingly
Hung with her lute, and play'd the self-same tune Trust the disguise ; and as to my complexion,
He used to play, and listen'd to the sharlow
Herself had made)—if this be wretchedness,
And if indeed it be a wretched thing
To trick out mine own death-bed, and imagine Add too my youth, when last we saw each other.
That I had died, died just ere his return!
Then see him listening to my constancy,
Here Valdez bends back, and smiles at her wildness, which Teresa noticing, checks her enthusiasm, and in a sooth
ing half-playful tone and manner, apologizes for her fancy 'Tis yours, Sir, to command; mine to obey.
by the little tale in the parenthesis.
Sits on my grave and gazes at the moon;
llis wounds and perilous voyages, and how Or haply, in some more fantastic mood,
With an heroic searlessness of danger To be in Paradise, and with choice flowers He roam'd the coast of Afric for your Alvar. Build up a bower where he and I might dwell, It was not well-You have moved me even to tears. And there to wait his coming ! O my sire! My Alvar's sire! if this be wretchedness
Oh pardon me, Lord Valdez! pardon me! That eats away the life, what were it, think you,
It was a foolish and ungrateful speech, If in a most assured reality
A most ungrateful speech! But I am hurried He should return, and see a brother's infant
Beyond myself, if I but hear of one Smile at him from my arms?
Who aims to rival Alvar. Were we not Oh, what a thought ! [Clasping her forehead. Born in one day, like twins of the same parent ? VALDEZ.
Nursed in one cradle ? Pardon me, my father!
Yet still the hope survives,
VALDEZ (looking foruard).
Hush! 'tis Monviedro.
Enter MONVIEDRO with ALHADRA.
MONVIEDRO (having first made his obeisance to O power of youth to feed on pleasant thoughts,
VALDEZ and TERESA).
My present need is with your son.
[ Looking forward. My father! We have hit the time. Here comes he! Yes, 't is he.
Enter from the opposite side Don ORDONIO.
My Lord Ordonio, this Moresco woman
Hail, reverend father! what may be the business? Oh no! he did not !
MONVIEDRO. • VALDEZ.
My Lord, on strong suspicion of relapse Captured in sight of land ! To his false creed, so recently abjured, From yon hill point, nay, from our castle watch-tower The secret servants of the inquisition We might have seen
Have seized her husband, and at my command TERESA.
To the supreme tribunal would have led him, His capture, not his death. But that he made appeal to you, my Lord,
As surety for his soundness in the faith. Alas! how aptly thou forgett'st a tale
Though lessen'd by experience what small trust Thou ne'er didst wish to learn! my brave Ordonio The asseverations of these Moors deserve, Saw both the pirate and his prize go down,
Yet still the deference to Ordonio's name, In the same storm that baffled his own valor,
Nor less the wish to prove, with what high honor And thus twice snatch'd a brother from his hopes : The Holy Church regards her faithful soldiers, Gallant Ordonio! (pauses ; then tenderly). O beloved Thus far prevail'd with me that
Which so o'erprizes my light services. Sink to the grave in joy.
[Then to ALHADRA
Your face is new to me.
My mind foretold me,
"T was little probable, thai Don Ordonio, Closes beneath his touch.
That your illustrious son, who fought so bravely VALDEZ.
Sume four years since to quell these rebel Moors, You wrong him, maiden! Should prove the patron of this infidel ! You wrong him, by my soul! Nor was it well The guarantee of a Moresco's faith! To character by such unkindly phrases
Now I return. The stir and workings of that love for you
ALHADRA. Which he has toil'd to smother, "T was not well, My Lord, my husband's name Nor is it grateful in you to forget
Is Isidore. (Ordonio slarts.)—You may remember it:
Three years ago, three years this very week,
ALHADRA. You left him at Almeria.
Not till my husband's free! I may not do it
I will stay here.
Who is this Isidore ! (You needs must recollect it by your wound), You were at sea, and there engaged the pirates,
Daughter! The murderers doubtless of your brother Alvar!
your permission, my dear Lord,
(Exeunt Valdez, MONVIEDRO, and ORDONIO MONVIEDRO (10 VALDEZ, and pointing at ORDONIO). What! is he ill, my Lord ? how strange he looks !
Hah! there he goes! a bitter curse go with him,
A scathing curse!
(Then as if recollecting herself, and with a timid look) You press'd upon him too abruptly, father,
You hate him, don't you, lady? The fate of one, on whom, you know, he doted.
TERESA (perceiving that Alhadra is conscious she has ORDONIO (starting as in sudden agitation).
Yes! I doted on him.
As I came on, his face so madden'd me,
And half unsheathed itIs my heart hard ? that even now the thought
TERESA. Should force itself upon me ?-Yet I feel it!
Be more calm, I pray you MONVIEDRO.
And as he walked along the narrow path
Close by the mountain's edge, my soul grew eager ;
"T was with hard toil I made myself remember ALHADRA (to TERESA).
That his Familiars held my babes and husband. O gentle lady! make the father stay,
To have leapt upon him with a tiger's plunge, Until my Lord recover. I am sure,
And hurl'd him down the rugged precipice,
O, it had been most sweet!
Hush! hush for shame! ORDONIO (as they return, to VALDEZ). Where is your woman's heart ? Strange, that this Monviedro
ALHADRA. Should have the power so to distemper me!
O gentle lady!
You have no skill to guess my many wrongs, Nay, 't was an amiable weakness, son !
Many and strange! Besides (ironically), I am a Chris
tian, My Lord, I truly grieve
And Christians never pardon-'tis their faith!
Shame fall on those who so have shown it to thee! A sudden seizure, father! think not of it.
ALHADRA. As to this woman's husband, I do know him.
I know that man; 't is well he knows not me.
Five years ago (and he was the prime agent),
Five years ago the holy brethren seized me.
What might your crime be?
ALHADRA. 'Tis certain that he was a Catholic;
I was a Moresco! What changes may have happen'd in three years,
They cast me, then a young and nursing mother, I cannot say; but grant me this, good father :
Into a dungeon of their prison-house,
Where was no bed, no fire, no ray of light,
No touch, no sound of comfort! The black air,
It was a toil to breathe it! when the door,
Slow opening at the appointed hour, disclosed
One human countenance, the lamp's red flame
Cower'd as it enter'd, and at once sunk down.
Oh miserable! by that lamp to see
My infant quarrelling with the coarse hard bread I will attend you home within an hour.
Brought daily : for the little wretch was sicklyVALDEZ.
My rage had dried away its natural food. Meantime, return with us and take refreshment. In darkness I remain'd--the dull bell counting,
Which haply told me, that all the all-cheering Sun
[ALVAR sinks down and hides his face in his robe. And peevish cries so fretted on my brain
TERESA. That I have struck the innocent babe in anger.
See, we have disturb'd him. TERESA.
(Approaches nearer to him. O Heaven! it is too horrible to hear.
I pray you think us friends—uncowl your face, ALHADRA.
For you seem faint, and the night breeze blows healing What was it then to suffer ? 'Tis most right I pray you think us friends! That such as you should hear it-Know you not,
ALVAR (raising his head). 'What Nature makes you mourn, she bids you heal ?
Calm, very calm!
And she spoke to me with her innocent voice,
That voice, that innocent voice! She is no traitress
Let us retire. (Haughtily to ALHADRA).
[They advance to the front of the Stage I saw the blessed arch of the whole heaven!
ALHADRA (with scorn). T was the first time my infant smiled. No more
He is indeed a Christian. For if I dwell upon that moment, Lady,
ALVAR (aside). A trince comes on which makes me o'er again She deems me dead, yet wears no mourning garment! All I then was my knees hang loose and drag, Why should my brother's wife-wear mourning And my lip falls with such an idiot laugh,
garments ? That you would start and shudder!
[T. TERESA Your pardon, noble dame! that I disturb'd you : TERESA.
The Past lives o'er again
In its effects, and to the guilty spirit
The ever-frowning Present is its image.
Traitress! (Then aside).
What sudden spell o'ermasters me?
Why seeks he me, shunning the Moorish woman? Enter Alvax disguised as a MORESCO, and in Moorish [Teresa looks round uneasily, but gradually be garments.
comes attentive as Alvar proceeds in the
next speech. Know you that stately Moor?
I dreamt I had a friend, on whom I leant
With blindest trust, and a betrothed maid,
Whom I was wont to call not mine, but me:
For mine own self seem'd nothing, lacking her. Who hides himself among the Alpuxarras.
This maid so idolized that trusted friend
Dishonor'd in my absence, soul and body! The Alpuxarras ? Does he know his danger, Fear, following guilt, tempted to blacker guilt, So near this seat?
And murderers were suborn'd against my life. ALHADRA.
But by my looks, and most impassion'd words, He wears the Moorish robes too, I roused the virtues that are dead in no man, As in defiance of the royal edict.
Even in the assassins' hearts! they made their terms (ALHADRA advances to ALVAR, who has walked to And thank'd me for redeeming them from murder.
the back of the stage near the rocks. TERESA
You are lost in thought: hear him no more, sweet Lady'
From morn to night I am myself a dreamer,
And slight things bring on me the idle mood!
Well, Sir, what happen'd then?
On a rude rock, He deems, that we are plotting to ensnare him: A rock, methought, fast by a grove of firs, Speak to him, Lady-none can hear you speak, Whose thready leaves to the low breathing gale And not believe you innocent of guile.
Made a soft sound most like the distant ocean,