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Return our mules and empty camels back,
That we may travel into Syria,
Where her betrothed lord Alcidamas,
Expects th' arrival of her highness' person.
MAG. And wheresoever we repose ourselves,
We will report but well of Tamburlaine.
TAMB. Disdains Zenocrate to live with me?
Or you, my lords, to be my followers?
Think you I weigh this treasure more than you?
Not all the gold in India's wealthy arms
Shall buy the meanest soldier in my train.
Zenocrate, lovelier than the love of Jove,
Brighter than is the silver Rhodope,
Fairer than whitest snow on Scythian hills,-
Thy person is more worth to Tamburlaine,
Than the possession of the Persian crown,
Which gracious stars have promis'd at my birth.
A hundred Tartars shall attend on thee,
Mounted on steeds swifter than Pegasus ;
Thy garments shall be made of Median silk,
Enchas'd with precious jewels of mine own,
More rich and valourous than Zenocrate's.
With milk-white harts upon an ivory sled,
Thou shalt be drawn amidst the frozen pools,
And scale the icy mountains' lofty tops,
Which with thy beauty will be soon resolv'd.
My martial prizes with five hundred men,
Won on the fifty-headed Wolga's waves,
Shall we offer to Zenocrate,
And then myself to fair Zenocrate.
TECH. (Aside to Tamb.) What now!—in love? TAMB. (Aside.) Techelles, women must be flat
But this is she with whom I am in love.
TAMB. How now?-What's the matter?
SOLD. A thousand Persian horsemen are at hand, Sent from the king to overcome us all.
TAMB. How now, my lords of Egypt, and Zeno
How!--must your jewels be restor❜d again,
And I that triumph'd so be overcome?
How say you, Lordings,-is not this your hope? AGYD. We hope yourself will willingly restore them.
TAMB. Such hope, such fortune, have the thousand horse.
Soft ye, my lords, and sweet Zenocrate!
You must be forced from me ere you go.
A thousand horsemen !-We five hundred foot!-
An odds too great for us to stand against.
But are they rich?-and is their armour good?
SOLD. Their plumed helms are wrought with
Their swords enamell'd, and about their necks
Hang massy chains of gold, down to the waist,
In ev'ry part exceeding brave and rich.
TAMB. Then shall we fight courageously with them. Or look you I should play the orator
TECH. No: cowards and faint-hearted runaways Look for orations when the foe is near:
Our swords shall play the orator for us.
USUM. Come! let us meet them at the mountain
And with a sudden and a hot alarum,
Drive all their horses headlong down the hill.
TECH. Come! Let us march!
TAMB. Stay! ask a parley first.
The SOLDIERS enter.
Open the ways, yet guard the treasure sure!
Lay out our golden wedges to the view,
That their reflexions may amaze the Persians;
And look we friendly on them when they come;
But if they offer word or violence,
We'll fight five hundred men at arms to one,
Before we part with our possession.
And 'gainst the general we will lift our swords,
And either lance his greedy thirsting throat,
Or take him prisoner, and his chain shall serve
For manacles, till he be ransom'd home.
TECH. I hear them come; shall we encounter them?
TAME Keep all your standings and not stir a foot,
Myself will bide the danger of the brunt.
Enter THERIDAMAS and others.
THER. Where is this Scythian Tamburlaine? TAMB. Who seek'st thou, Persian?-I am Tamburlaine.
THER. Tamburlaine!-A Scythian shepherd so
With nature's pride and richest furniture!
His looks do menace Heaven and dare the God's :
His fiery eyes are fix'd upon
As if he now devis'd some stratagem,
Or meant to pierce Avernus' darksome vauts
To pull the triple-headed dog from hell.
TAMB. Noble and mild this Persian seems to be, If outward habit judge the inward man.
TECH. His deep affections make him passionate. TAMB. With what a majesty he rears his looks! In thee, thou valiant man of Persia,
I see the folly of thy emperor.
Art thou but captain of a thousand horse,
That by characters graven in thy brows,
And by thy martial face and stout aspect,
Deserv'st to have the leading of an host?
Forsake thy king, and do but join with me,
And we will triumph over all the world;
I hold the fates bound fast in iron chains,
And with my hand turns fortune's wheel about :
And sooner shall the sun fall from his sphere,
Than Tamburlaine be slain or overcome.
Draw forth thy sword, thou mighty man at arms,
Intending but to raze my charmed skin,
And Jove himself will stretch his hand from Heaven
To ward the blow and shield me safe from harm.
See how he rains down heaps of gold in showers,
As if he meant to give my soldiers pay!
And as a sure and grounded argument,
That I shall be the monarch of the East,
He sends this soldan's daughter rich and brave,
To be my queen and portly emperess.
If thou wilt stay with me, renowned man,
And lead thy thousand horse with my conduct,
Besides thy share of this Egyptian prize,
Those thousand horse shall sweat with martial spoil
Of conquer'd kingdoms and of cities sack'd;
Both we will walk upon the lofty cliffs,
And Christian merchants that with Russian stems
Plough up huge furrows in the Caspian sea,
Shall vail to us, as Lords of all the lake.
Both we will reign as consuls of the earth,
And mighty kings shall be our senators.
Jove sometimes masked in a shepherd's weed,.
And by those steps that he hath scal'd the heavens
May we become immortal like the Gods.
Join with me now in this my mean estate,
(I call it mean because being yet obscure,
The nations far remov'd admire me not,)
And when my name and honour shall be spread
As far as Boreas claps his brazen wings,
Or fair Böötes sends his cheerful light,
Then shalt thou be competitor with me,
And sit with Tamburlaine in all his majesty.
THER. Not Hermes, prolocutor to the Gods,
Could use persuasions more pathetical.
TAME. Nor are Apollo's oracles more true,
Than thou shalt find my vaunts substantial,