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Between the Earl Politian and himself,
He doth decline your cartel.

Pol. What didst thou say?

What answer was it you brought me, good Baldazzar?
With what excessive fragrance the Zephyr comes
Laden from yonder bowers !—a fairer day,
Or one more worthy Italy, methinks,
No mortal eyes have seen !—What said the Count?

Bal. That he, Castiglione, not being aware
Of any feud existing, or any cause
Of quarrel, between your lordship and himself,
Cannot accept the challenge.

Pol. It is most true—
All this is very true. When saw you, sir,—
When saw you now, Baldazzar, in the frigid,
Ungenial Britain, which we left so lately,
A heaven so calm as this—so utterly free
From the evil taint of clouds ?—And he did say?

Bal. No more, my lord, than I have told you, sir:
The Count Castiglione will not fight,
Having no cause for quarrel.

Pol. Now this is true—

All very true. Thou art my friend, Baldazzar,
And I have not forgotten it: thou It do me
A piece of service. Wilt thou go back and say
Unto this man, that I, the Earl of Leicester,
Hold him a villain ?—thus much, I pr'ythee, say
Unto the Count: it is exceeding just
He should have cause for quarrel.

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Bal. My lord !—my friend!

Pol. (aside). Tishe!—he comes himself! (Aloud.) Thou reasonest well. I know what thou wouldst say—not send the message. Well, I will think of it!—I will not send it. Now, pr'ythee, leave me: hither doth come a person With whom affairs of a most private nature I would adjust.

Bal. I go: to-morrow we meet—

Do we not ?—at the Vatican.

Pol. At the Vatican.

[Exit Baldazzar.

Enter Castiglione.

Cos. The Earl of Leicester here!

Pol. I am the Earl of Leicester, and thou seest— Dost thou not ?—that I am here.

Cos. My lord, some strange,

Some singular mistake—misunderstanding—
Hath, without doubt, arisen: thou hast been urged
Thereby, in heat of anger, to address
Some words most unaccountable, in writing,
To me, Castiglione; the bearer being
Baldazzar, Duke of Surrey. I am aware
Of nothing which might warrant thee in this thing,
Having given thee no offence. Ha !—am I right?
'T was a mistake ?—undoubtedly—we all
Do err at times.

Pol. Draw, villain, and prate no more!

Cas. Ha !—draw ?—and villain? Have at thee, then, at once, Proud Earl! • [Draws.

Pol. (drawing). Thus to the expiatory tomb,
Untimely sepulchre, I do devote thee,
In, the name of Lalage!

Cas. (letting fall his sword, and recoiling to the
extremity of the stage). Of Lalage!
Hold off—thy sacred hand !—A vaunt, I say!
Avaunt! I will not fight thee—indeed, I dare not.
Pol. Thou wilt not fight with me? didst say, Sir
Count?
Shall I be baffled thus ?—now this is well.'
Didst say thou darest not? Ha!

Cas. I dare not—dare not:

Hold off thy hand !—With that beloved name
So fresh upon thy lips I will not fight thee:
I cannot—dare not!

Pol. Now, by my halidom,

I do believe thee !—coward, I do believe thee!
Cas. Ha !—coward !—this may not be!

[Clutches his sword and staggers toward Port
Tian, but his purpose is changed before
reaching him, and he falls upon his knee at
the feet of the Earl.

Alas! my lord,
It is—it is—most true. In such a cause
I am the veriest coward. Oh, pity me!

H

Pol. [greatly softened). Alas !—I do—indeed I pity thee.

Cas. And Lalage

Pol. Scoundrel!arise and die!

Cas. It needeth not be—thus—thus—oh, let me die .

Thus on my bended knee! It were most fitting
That in this deep humiliation I perish.
For in the fight I will not raise a hand
Against thee, Earl of Leicester. Strike thou home !—

(Baring his bosom.
Here is no let or hindrance to thy weapon—
Strike home! I will not fight thee!

Pol. Now 'sdeath and hell! Am I not—am I not sorely—grievously tempted To take thee at thy word? But, mark me, sir! Think not to fly me thus. Do thou prepare For public insult in the streets—before The eyes of the citizens. I 'll follow thee— Like an avenging spirit I 'll follow thee, Even unto death. Before those whom thou lovest— Before all Rome, I 'll taunt thee, villain,—I 11 taunt

thee— Dost hear ?—with cowardice! Thou wilt not fight me? Thou liest! thou shalt! [Exit.

Gas. Now this, indeed, is just!

Most righteous, and most just, avenging Heaven!

POEMS WRITTEN IN YOUTH..

SONNET—TO SCIENCE.

Science! true daughter of Old Time thou art!

Who alterest all things with thy peering eyes. Why preyest thou thus upon the poet's heart,

Vulture, whose wings are dull realities? How should he love thee? or how deem thee wise,

Who wouldst not leave him in his wandering To seek for treasure in the jewelled skies,

Albeit he soared with an undaunted wing? Hast thou not dragged Diana from her car?

And driven the Hamadryad from the wood To seek a shelter in some happier star?

Hast thou not torn the Naiad from her flood, The Elfin from the green grass, and from me The summer dream beneath the tamarind-tree?

* Private reasons—some of which have reference to the sin of plagiarism, and others to the date of Tennyson's first poems—have induced me, after some hesitation, to republish these, the crude compositions of my earliest boyhood. They are printed verbatim, without alteration, from the original edition, the date of which is too remote to be judiciously

acknowledged E. A. F. His first publication, I believe,

was as early as 1827.—Ed.

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