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“ When years first styl'd me twenty, I began But, if beyond those limits you demand, To sport with catching Snares that Love had set : I must not answer, sir, nor understand.” Like birds that flutter round the gin till ta'en,
“ Believe me, virtuous maiden! my desire Or the poor fly caught in Arachne's net,
Is chaste and pious as thy virgin thought; Even so I sported with her beauty's light,
No flash of lust, 'tis no dishonest fire, Till I at last grew blind with too much sight.
Which goes as soon as it was quickly brought; “ First it came stealing on me, whilst I thought But as thy beauty pure; which let not be 'Twas easy to repel it ; but as fire,
Eclipsed by disdain and cruelty !" Though but a spark, soon into flames is brought,
“Oh! how shall I reply?” she cry'd, “ thou 'st So mine grew great, and quickly mounted higher ;
My soul, and therefore take thy victory: (won Which so have scorch'd my love-struck soul, Thy eyes and speeches have my heart o'ercome, that I
And if I should deny thee love, then I Still live in torment, yet each minute die.”
Should be a tyrant to myself : that fire “ Who is it,” said Philocrates, “ can move
Which is kept close burns with the greatest ire. With charming cyes such deep affection?
“Yet do not count my yielding lightness, now; I may perhaps assist you in your love;
Impute it rather to my ardent love; Two can effect more than yourself alone.
Thy pleasing carriage won me long ago, My counsel this thy errour may reclaim,
And pleading Beauty did myliking move; [might Or my salt tears quenchthy destructive flame.”
Thy eyes, which draw like loadstones with their “Nay," said Philetus, “ oft my eyes do flow
The hardest hearts, won mine to leave me Like Nilus, when it scorns th’ opposed shore;
quite." Yet all the watery plenty I bestow,
“Oh! I am rapt above the reach," said he, Is to my flame an oil that feeds it more.
“Of thought; my soul already feels the bliss (thee So fame reports o' th’ Dodonéan spring,
Of Heaven : when, sweet, my thoughts once tax but That lightens all those which are put therein.
With any crime, may I lose all happiness “ But, being you desire to know her, she
Is wish'd for: both your favour here, and dead, Is call'd” (with that his eyes let fall a shower, May the just gods pour vengeance on my head!” As if they fain would drown the memory
Whilst he was speaking this (behold their fate !) Of his life-keeper's name) “ Constantia" More
Cotstantia's father enter'd in the room, Grief would not let him utter; tears, the best
When glad Philetus, ignorant of his state, Expressers of true sorrow, spoke the rest.
Kisses her cheeks, more red than setting Sun, To which his noble friend did thus reply:
Orelse the Morn,blushing through clouds of water, “ And was this all ? Whate'er your grief would ease, To see ascending Sol congratulate her. Though a far greater task, believe't, for thee
Just as the guilty prisoner fearful stands, It should be soon done by Philocrates :
Reading his fatal Theta in the brows Think all your wish perform'd; but see, the day,
Of him who both his life and death commands, Tir'd with its heat, is hasting now away !"
Ere from his mouth he the sad sentence knows : Home from the silent woods Night bids them go : Such was his state to see her father come, But sad Philetus can no comfort find;
Nor wish'd-for, nor expected, in the room. What in the day he fears of future woe,
Th' enrag'd old man bids him no more to dare At night in dreams, like truth, affrights his mind.
Such bold intrusion in that house, nor be Why dost thou vex him, Love? Could'st thou but
At any time with his lov'd daughter there, Thou would'st thyself Philetus' rival be. [see, Till he had given bim such authority : Philocrates, pitying his doleful moan,
But to depart, since she her love did show him, And wounded with the sorrows of his friend,
Was living death, with lingering torments, to him. Brings him to fair Constantia ; where alone
This being known to kind Philocrates, He might impart his love, and either end
He chears his friend, bidding him banish fear, His fruitless hopes, nipt by her coy disdain,
And by some letter his griev'd mind appease, Or, by her liking, bis wisht joys attain.
And show her that which to her friendly ear “Fairest,” said he, " whom the bright Heavens do Time gave no leave to tell : and thus his quill cover,
Declares to her the absent lover's will.
PHILETUS TO CONSTANTIA. And do not you contemn that ardent Alame,
Which from yourself, your own fair beauty, came! I TRUST, dear soul, my absence cannot move " Trust me, I long have bid my love ; but now
You to forget or doubt my ardent love : Am fore'd to show't, such is my inward smart!
For, were there any means to see you, I And you alone, fair saint! the means do know
Would run through death, and all the misery To heal the wound of my consuming heart.
Fate could inflict; that so the world might say, Then, since it only in your power doth lie
In life and death I lov'd Constantia. To kill or save, Oh! help, or else I die.”
Then let not, dearest sweet, our absence part
Our loves, but each breast keep the other's heart; His gently cruel love did thus reply;
Give warmth to one another, till there rise " I for your pain am grieved, and would do, From all our labours and our industries Without impeachment of my chastity
The long-expected fruits: have patience, sweet! And honour, any thing might pleasure you. There's no man whom the summer pleasures greet
Before he taste the winter; none can say,
So, when we once have wasted Sorrow's night,
his, when Constantia read, she thought her state Nost happy, by Philetus' constancy And perfect love: she thanks her flattering fate, kisses the paper, till with kissing she
The welcome characters doth dull and stain : Then thus with ink and tears writes back again.
CONSTANTIA TO Puletus. YOUR absence, sir, though it be long, yet Neither forget nor doubt your constancy. Nor need you fear that I should yield unto Another, what to your true love is due. My heart is yours; it is not in my claim, Nor have I power to take it back again. There's nought but death can part our souls; no
But for the harvest of our hopes I'll stay,
Oh! how this letter seem'd to raise his pride!
Prouder than Jason, when from Colchos he
Returned with the fleece's victory.
Them kind Philocrates t' each other brought,
Of what we wish'd for, opportunity,
That may too soon the wings of Love out-fly!
We may depart in safety, and no more
With dreams of pleasure only, heal our sore.”
She yields; and, singing added to desire,
Comfort's Sum we then shall see,
Hearts which Love hath join'd together.
Rapt up with secret joy that they have found
A way to heal the torment of their wound. But, ere the Sun through many days had run, Constantia's charining beauty had o'ercome Guisardo's heart, and scorn'd affection won; Her eyes soon conqner'd all they shone upon, Shot through his wounded heart such hot de
sire, As nothing but her love could quench the fire. In roofs which gold and Parian stone adorn (Proud as the owner's mind) he did abound; In fields so fertile for their yearly corn, As might contend with scorch'd Calabria's
Of surest riches, he was base and poor,
treat With gentle speeches and mild courtesy ; Which when they see despis'd by her, they
To be worn-out by thought of any smart.
With them Constantia went, but not to find
That came too soon upon him; and his sun
Was quite eclips'd before it fully shone. Constantia miss'd, the hunters in amaze Take each a several course, and by curst Fate Guisardo runs, with a love-carried pace, Tow'rds them, who little knew their woeful state:
Philetus, like bolu Icarus, soaring high
To honours, found the depth of misery.
But, ere his spirits were possest of deat',
TIME! Ay with greater speed away,
Constantia! my short race is run;
THE TRAGICAL HISTORY OF
PYRAMUS AND TUISBE.
More my short time permits ine not to tell,
TO THE RIGHT WORSHIPFUL, MY VERY LOVING MASTER well !"
MR. LAMBERT OSBOLSTON,
CHIEF SCHOOL-MASTER OF WESTMINSTER SCHOOL.
SIR, Which was so bright, 'is like, when life was My childish Muse is in her spring, and yet done,
Can only show some budding of her wit. A star that's fall'n, or an eclipsed sun.
One frown upon her work, learn’d sir, from you, Thither Philocrates was driven by Fate,
Like some unkinder storm shot from your brow, And saw his friend lie bleeding on the earth;
Would turn her sprog to withering autumn's time, Near his pale corpse his weeping sister sate,
And maki her blossoms perish ere their prime. Her eyes shed tears, her heart to sighs gave
But if you smile, if in your gracious eye birth.
She an auspicious alpha can descry, Philocrates, when he saw this, did cry,
How soon will they grow fruit! how fresh appear! Friend, I'll revenge, or bear thee company!
That bad such beams iheir infancy to chear!
Which being sprung to ripeness, expect then “ Just Jove hath sent me to revenge his fate;
The earliest offering of her grateful pen. Nay, stay, Guisardo, think not Heaven in jest :
Your most dutiful scholar, "Tis vain to hope flight can secure thy state.” Then thrust his sword into the villain's breast.
ABR. COWLEY. “ Here,” said Philocrates, “ thy life I send
A sacrifice, t appease my slaughter'd friend.”
PYRAMUS AND THISBE.
By mighty Ninus' wite, two houses joind:
One Thisbe liv'd in, Pyramus the fair With that he falls, but, lifting up his eyes,
In the other: Earth ne'er boasted such a pair! “ Farewell, Constantia !” that word said, be
The very senseless walls themselves combin'd, dies.
And grew in one, just like their master's inind. What shall she do? She to her brother runs,
Thisbe all other women did excel,
The queen of love less lovely was than she:
And Pyramus more sweet than tongue can tell ; And with her kisses warms his clammy face. “My dear Philocrates !” she, weeping, cries,
Nature grew proud in framing them so well. “Speak to thy sister !” but no voice replies.
But Venus, envying they so fair should be,
Bids her son Cupid show his cruelty.
The all-subduing god his bow doth bend, “ ( stay, blest soul, stay but a little here,
Whets and prepares his most rernorseless dart,
which he unseen unto their hearts did send, And take me with you to a lasting rest. Then to Elysium's mansions both shall ny,
And so was Love the cause of Beauty's end. Be married there, and never more to die.”
But could he see, he bad not wrought their smart;
For pity sure would have o'ercome his heart. But, seeing them both dead, she cry'd, “ Ah me!
Like as a bird, which in a net is ta’en,
By struggling more entangles in the gin; Since 'twas for me, dear love, that thou didst So they, who in Love's labyrinth remain, die,
With striving never can a freedom gain. I'll follow thee, and not thy loss deplore;
The way to enter's broad; but, being in, These eyes, that saw thee kill'd, shall see no
No art, no labour can an exit win.
These lovers, though their parents did reprove “ It shall not sure he said that thou didst die,
Their fires, and watched their deeds with jealousy; And thy Constantia live when thou wast slain:
Though in these storms no comfort could remove
The various doubts and fears that cool hot love; No, no, dear soul! I will not stay from thee; That will reflect upon my valued fame."
Though he nor her's, nor she bis face could see, Then piercing her sad breast, “ I come !" she
Yet this could not abolish Love's decree; cries,
Por age had crack'd the wall which did them part; And Death for ever clos'd her weeping eyes. This the unanimous couple soon did spy, Her soul being fled to its eternal rest,
And here their inward sorrows did impart, Her father comes, and, seeing this, he falls
Unlading the sad burthen of their heart. To th' earth, with grief too great to be exprest:
Though Love be blind, this shows he can descry Whose doletul words my tired Muse me calls
A way to lessen his own misery.
of odoriferous breath; no other sport
So she, who fetcheth Instre from their sight, They could enjoy; yit think the time but short, Doth purpose to destroy their glorious ligit. And wish that it again renewed were,
Unto the mulberry-tree fairThishe came; To suck each other's breath for ever tirere.
Where having rested long, at last she 'gan
A little while before her death, she sang:
Come, love! why stayest thou? the night And by their tears could understand their smart: Will vanish ere we taste delight:
But it was hard and knew not what they mcant, The Moon obscures herself from sight,
Thou absent, whose eyes give her light.
Or we by Morn shall be o'erta'en; Breaks thorough all thy flinty cruelty !
Love's joy's thine owo as well as mine; For buth our souls so closely joined lic,
Spend not therefore the time in vain. That nonght but angiy Death can them remole;
HERE doubtful thoughts broke off her pleasant And though he part them, yet they'll meet
And for her lover's stay sent many a sigh;
Her Pyramus, she thought, did tarry long, Abortive tears from their fair eyes out-flow'd,
And that his absence did her too much wrong. And damm'd the lovely splendour of their sight,
Then, betwixt longing hope and jealousy, Which seem'd like 'Titan,wh Ist some watery cloud
She fears, yet's loth to tax, his loyalty. O'erspreads his face, and his bright beams duth shroud ;
Sometimes she thinks that he hath her forsaken; Till Vesper chas'd away the conquer'd light, Sometimes, that danger hath befallen him : And forced them (though loth) to bid good She fears that he another love hath taken ; right.
Whih, being but imagin’d, soon doth waken
Numberless thoughts, which on her heart did But ere Aurora, usher to the day,
Fears, that her future fate too truly sing. [fling Began with welcome lustre to appear, The lovers rise, and at that cranny they
While she thus musing sat, ran from the wood Thus to each other their thoughts open lay,
An angry liun to the crystal springs, With many a sigh and many a speaking teai ;
Near to that place; who coming from his food, Whose grief the pitying Morning blusht to hear. His chaps were all besmear'd with crimson blood:
Swifter than thought, sweet Thisbe strait begins “ Dear love!” said Pyramus,“ how long shall we,
To fly from him; fear gave her swallows' wings.
Bids her to stay, lest Pyramus should come,
But fear expels all reasons; she doth rin “Therefore, sweet Thisbe, let us meet this night
Into a darksome cave, ne'er seen by sun,
For mounting love, stopt in its course, doth fall, With bloody teeth he tore in pieces smail;
For, could the senseless beast her face descry, “ What though our cruel parents angry be?
It had not done her such an injury.
The night half wasted, Pyramus did come;
Who, seeing printed in the yielding sand Wholets slip Fortune, her shall never find ; The lion's paw, and by the fountain some Occasion, once pass'd by, is bald behind.” Of Thisbe's garment, sorrow struck bim dumb;
Just like a marble statue did he stand,
Cut by some skilful graver's artful hand.
Recovering breath, at Fate be did exclaim, Which Venus seeing, with blind Chance conspir'd, Washing with tears the torn and bloody weed :
And many a charining accent to her sent, “ I may,” said he, “ mysel: for her death blame; That she (ai last) would frustrate their intent. Therefore my blood shall wash away that shame:
Since she is dead, whose beauty doth exceed Thus Beauty is by Beauty's means undone,
All that frail man can either hear or read."
Into thy constant love, to which 'tis paid :
And on his love he rais'd his dying head: I strait will meet thee in the pleasant shade
Where, striving long for breath, at last, said he, Of cool Elysium ; where we, being met,
“ O Thisbe, I am hasting to the dead, Shall taste those joys that here we could not get.” And cannot heal that wound my fear hath bred: Then through his breast thrusting his sword, life hies Farewell, sweet Thisbe! we must parted be, From him, and he makes haste to seek his fair:
For angry Death will force me soon from thee." And as upon the colour'd ground he lies,
Life did from him, he from his mistress, part, His blood had dropt upon the mulberries;
Leaving his love to languish here in woe. With which th' unspotted berries stained were, What shall she do? How shall she ease her heart?
And ever since with red they culour'd are. Or with what language speak her inward smart? At last fair Thisbe left the den, for fear
Usurping passion reason doth o'erllow, Of disappointing Pyramus, since she
She vows that with her Pyramus she'll go : Was bound by promise for to meet him there : Then takes the sword wherewith her love was slain, But when she saw the berries changed were
With Pyramus's crimson blood warm still; From white to black, she knew not certainly And said, “Oh stay, blest soul, awhile refrain, It was the place where they agreed to be.
That we may go together, and remain With what delight from the dark cave she came,
In endless joys, and never fear the ill Thinking to tell how she escap'd the beast!
Of grudging friends !"--Then she herself did kill. But, when she saw her Pyramus lie slain,
To tell what grief their parents did sustain, Ah! how perplex'd did her sad soul remain !
Were more than my rude quill can overcome ; She tears her golden hair, and beats her breast, Much did they weep and grieve, but all in vain, And every sigu of raging grief exprest.
For weeping calls not back the dead again. She blames all-powerful Jove ; and strives to take
Both in one grave were laid, when life was done; His bleeding body from the moisten'd ground.
And these few words were writ upon the tomb:
Lie two beauties join'd in one.
Two, whose loves deaths could not sever; But afterwards, recovering breath, said she,
For both liv'd, both dy'd together. “ Alas! what chance hath parted thee and I? O tell what evil hath befall'n to thee,
Two, whose souls, being too divine
For earth, in their own sphere now shine.