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Syph. 'Tis not my talent to conceal my thoughts,
Or carry smiles and sunshine in my face,
When discontent sits heavy at my heart:
I have not yet so much the Roman in me.
Jus. Why dost thou cast out such ungen'rous terms
Against the lords and sov’reigns of the world?
Dost thou not see mankind tall down before thein,
And own the force of their superior virtue?
Is there a nation in the wilds of Afric,
Amidst our barren rocks, and burning sanıls,
That does not tremble at the Roman name?
Syph. Gods! where's the worth that sets this people up
Above your own Numidia's tawny sins?
Do they with tougher sinews bead the bow?
Or-flies the jav’lin swifter to its mark,
Launch'd from the vigour of a Roman arm?
Who like our active African instructs
The fiery steed, and trains him to his hand ?
Or guides in troops th’embattled elephant,
Laden with war? These, these are arts, my prince,
In which your Zama does not stoop to Rome.
JUB. These all are viriues of a meaner rank,
Perfections ihat are plac'd in bones and nerves;
A Roman soul is bent on higher views;
To civilize the rude unpolish'd world;
To lay it under the restraint of laws;
To make man inild, and sociable to man:
To cultivate the wild licentious savage
With wisdom, discipline, and lib'ral aris,
Tú embellishinents of life: viriues like these
Make human nature shine, reform the soul,
And break our fierce barbarians into men.
Syph. Patience, just Heav’os! -Excuse an old man's
What are these wondrous civilizing arts,
This Roman polish, and this smooth behaviour,
That render man thus tractable and tame?
Are they not only to disguise our passions,
To set our looks at variance with our thoughts,
To check the starts and sallies of the soul,
And break off a)Lits commerce with the longue?
In short, to change us into other creatures,
Than what our nature and the gods design'd us?
JUB. To strike thee dumb, turn up thy eyes to Cato!
There mayśt thou see to what a godlike height
The Roman virtues lift up mortal man.
While good, and just, and anxious for his friends,
He's still severely bent against himself;
Renouncing sleep, and rest, and food, and ease,
He strives with thirst and hunger, toil and heal:
And when his furtune sets before him all
The pomps and pleasures that his soul can wish,
His rigid virtue will accept of none.
Syph. Believe me, prince, there's not an African
That traverses our vast Numidian deserts
In quest of prey,
and lives upon his bow,
But better practices these boasted virtues.
Coarse are his meals, the fortune of the chase;
Amidst the running stream he slakes his thirst,
Toils all the day, and at th' approach of night
On the first friendly bank he throws him down), .
Or rests his head upon a rock till morn,
Then rises fresh, pursues his wonted game,
And if the following day he chance to find
A new repast, or an untasted spring,
Blesses his stars, and thinks it luxury.
JUB. Thy prejudices, Syphax, won't discern
What virtues grow froin ignorance and choice,
Nor how the hero differs from the brute.
But grant that others could with equal glory
Look down on pleasures, and the baits of sense ;
Where shall we find the man that bears asfiction,
Great and majestic in his griefs, like Cato?
Heav'ns! with what strength, what steadiness of mind,
He triumphs in the midst of all his sufl'rings!
How does he rise against a load of woes,
And thank the gods that throw the weight upon
him! Syph. 'Tis pride, rank pride, and haughtiness of soul: I think the Romans call it stoicism. Had not your royal father thought so highly Of Roman virtue, and of Cato's cause, He had not fall'n by a slave's hand, inglorious;
Nor would his slaughter'd army now have lain
On Afric's sands, disfigur'd with their wounds,
To gorge the wolves and vultures of Numidia.
Jus. Why dost thou call my sorrows up afresh ?
My father's name brings tears into mine eyes.
Syeh. Oh, that you'd profit by your father's ills!
JUB. What wouldst thou have me do?
SYPH. Abandon Cato.
Jub. Syphax, I should be more than twice an orphan By such a loss.
Syph. Ay, there's the tie that binds you!
You long to call him father. Marcia's charms
Work in your heart upseen, and plead for Cato.
No wonder you are deaf to all I say.
JUB. Syphax, your zeal becomes importunate;
I've hitherto permitted it to rave,
And talk at large; but learn to keep it in,
Lest it should take more freedom than I'll give it.
Syph. Şir, your great father never us'd me thus,
Alas, he's dead! but can you e'er forget
The tender sorrows, and the pangs of nature,
The fond embraces, and repeated blessings,
you drew from him in your last farewell?
Still must I cherish the dear, sad remembrance,
At once to torture, and to please my soul.
The good old King at parting wrung my hand,
(His eyes brimful of tears,) then sighing cry'd,
Prithee be careful of my son!
- His grief Swell’d up so high, he could not utter more.
JUB. Alas, the story melts away iny soul ! That best of fathers ! how shall I discharge The gratitude and duty which I owe him?
Syph. By laying up his counsels in your heart.
JUB. His counsels bade me yield to thy directions:
Then, Syphax, chide me in severest terms,
Vent all thy passion, and I'll stand its shock,
Calm and unruffled as a summer sea,
When not a breath of wind flies o'er its surface.
Syph. Alas, my prince, I'd guide you to your safety!
JUB. I do believe thou wouldst; but tell me how?
Syph. Fly from the fate that follows Cæsar's foes.
JUB. My father scoru'd to do it.
Syph. And therefore dy’d.
JUB. Better to die ten thousand thousand deaths,
Than wound my honour.
Syph. Rather say your love.
Jue. Syphax, I've promis'd to preserve my temper: Why wilt thou urye me to confess a flame I long have stifled, and would fain conceal?
Sypn. Believe me, prince, though hard to conquer love, 'Tis easy to divert and break its force: Absence might cure it, or a second mistress Light up another tiame, and put out this. The glowing dames of Zama's royal court Have faces flush'd with more exalted charms; The sun that rolls his chariot o'er their heads Works up more fire and colour in their cheeks: Were
you with these, iny prince, you'd soon forget The pale, unripen'd beauties of ihe north.
JUB. Tis not a set of features, or complexion, The vincture of a skin, that I admire. Beauty soon grow's fainiliar to the lover, Fades in his eye, and palls upou the sense. The virtuous Marcia tow'rs above her sex: True, she is fair (Oh, how divinely fair!) But still the lovely maid improves her charms With inward greainess, unaffected wisdom, And sanctity of mariners. Cato's soul Shines out in ev'ry thing she acts or speaks, While winning mildness and attractive smiles Dwell in her looks, and with becoming grace Sofien the rigour of her father's virtues. Syph. How does your tongue grow wanton in her praise !
It must be so-Plato, thou reason'st well-
Else whence this pleasing hope, this fond desire,
This longing after immortality?
Or whence this secret dread, and inward horror,
Of falling into nought? Why shrinks the soul
Back on herself, and startles at destruction?
'Tis the Divinity that stirs within us;
'Tis Heav'n itself that points out an hereafter,
And intimates eternity to man.
Eternity! thou pleasing, dreadful thought!
Through what variety of untry'd being,
Through what new scenes and changes must we pass !
The wide, th' unbounded prospect lies before me;
But shadows, clouds, and darkness, rest upon it.
Here will I hold. If there's a pow'r above us,
(And that there is, all Nature cries aloud
Through all her works) he must delight in virtue;
And that which he delights in must be happy.
But when, or where? This world was made for Cæsar.
I'm weary of conjectures-this must end 'em.
Thus am I doubly arm'd-My death and life,
My bane and antidote, are both before me.
This in a moment brings me to an end;
But this informs me I shall never die.
The soul, secur'd in her existence, smiles
At the drawn dagger, and defies its point;
The stars shall fade away, the sun.himself
Grow dim with age, and Nature sink in years;
But thou shalt flourish in immortal youth,
Unhurt amidst the war of elements,
The wreck of matter, and the crush of worlds.