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Memmo. I understand thee, bat I must, To love; but_no_no_no_it must have been not answer.
A fearful pang which wrung a groan from Marina (fiercely). True_none dare answer him. here save on the rack,
Senator. And feeling for thy husband's Or question save those
wrongs, wouldst thon Memmo (interrupting her) High-born Have him bear more than mortal pain, in dame! bethink theo
silence ? Where thou now art.
Marina. We all must bear tortures. I Marina. Where I now am !-It was
have not My husband's father's palace.
Left barren the great house of Foscari, Memmo. "The Duke's palace.
Though they sweep both the Doge and son Marina. And his son's prison ;-true, I
from life; have not forgot it;
I have endured as much in giving life And if there were no other nearer, bitterer To those who will succeed them as they can Remembrances, would thank the illustrious In leaving it: but mine were joyful pangs; Memmo
And yet they wrung me till I could hare For pointing out the pleasures of the place. shriek’d, Memmo. Be calnt !
But did not, for my hope was to bring forth Marina (looking up towards heaven). I Heroes, and would not welcome them with am; but oh, thou eternal God!
tears. Canst thou continue so, with such a world? Memmo. All's silent now. Memmo. Thy husband yet may be ab- Marina. Perhaps all's over, but solved.
I will not deem it: he hath nerved himself, Marina. He is,
And now defies them.
Enter an Officer hastily.
[Exit Officer. least
Memmo. Lady, An hour since, face to face, as judge and Twere better to retire. culprit :
Senator (offering to assist her). I pray Will he condemn him ?
thee do so. Memino. I trust, not.
Marina. O! I will tend him. Marina. But if
Memmo. You! Remember, lady! He does not, there are those will sentence Ingress is given to none within those both.
chambers, Memmo. They can.
Except the Ten, and their familiars. Marina. And with them power and will Marina. Well,
I know that none who enter there return In wickedness:-my husband 's lost ! As they have enter'd- many never; but Memmo. Not 80;
They shall not balk my entrance. Justice is judge in Venice.
Memmo. Alas! this Marina. If it were so
Is but to expose yourself to harsh repulse, There now would be no Venice. But let it And worse suspense. Live on, so the good die not, till the hour Marina. Who shall oppose me? Of nature's summons; but the Ten's is Memmo. They quicker,
Whosc duty 'tis to do so. And we must wait on't. Ah! a voice of wail ! Marina. 'Tis their duty
[A faint cry within. To trample on all human feelings, all Senator. Hark!
Ties which bind man to man, to emulate Memmo. Twas a cry of
The fiends, who willone day requite them in Marina. No, no; not my husband's- Variety of torturing ! Yet I'll pass. Not Foscari's.
Memmo. It is impossible. Memmo. The voice was
Marina. That shall be tried. Marina. Not his : no.
Despair defies even despotism : there is He shriek! No; that should be his father's That in my heart would make its way part,
through hosts Not his - not his-he'll die in silence. With levelld spears; and think you a few
[1 faint groan again within. jailors Memmo. What!
Shall put me from my path ? Give me, Again?
Marina. His voice! it seem'd so:I will not This is the Doge's palace; I am wife Believe it. Should he shrink, I cannot of the Duke's son, the innocent Duke's son,
And they shall hear this!
Memmo. It will only serve
Lored. And so the Council must break More to exasperate his judges.
up, and Justice Marina. What
Pause in her full career, because a woman Are judges who give way to anger they Breaks in on our deliberations? Who do so are assassins. Give we way. Barb. No,
[Erit Marina. That's not the cause; you saw the prisoner's Senator. Poor lady!
Upon the least renewal.
Barb. 'Tis vain to murmur; the majority [The officer passes over the stage In council were against you. with another person.
Lored. Thanks to you, sir, Memmo. I hardly
And the old ducal dotard, who combined Thought that the Ten had even this touch | The worthy voices which o'erruled my own. of pity,
Barb. I am a judge; but must confess Or would permit assistance to this sufferer.
Senator. Pity! Is 't pity to recal to feeling of our stern duty, which prescribes the The wretch too happy to escape to death question, By the compassionate trance, poor nature's And bids us sit and see its sharp infliction, last
Makes me wish Resource against the tyranny of pain ? Lored. What? Memmo. I marvel they condemn him not Barb. That You would sometimes feel, at once.
As I do always. Senator. That's not their policy: they'd Lored. Go to, you're a child, have him live,
Infirm of feeling as of purpose, blown Because he fears not death ; and banish him, About by every breath', shook by a sigh, Because all earth, except his native land, And melted by a tear--a precious judge To him is one wide prison, and each breath For Venice ! and a worthy statesman to Of foreign air he draws seems a slow poison, Be partner in my policy! Consuming but not killing.
Barb. He shed
Even with the crown of glory in his eye, Address'd to Milan's duke, in the full know- At such inhuman artifice of pain ledge
As was forced on him: but he did not cry That it would fall into the senate's hands, For pity; not a word nor groan escaped him, And thus he should be re-convey'd to Venice. And those two shrieks were not in suppliMemmo. But as a culprit.
cation, Senator. Yes, but to his country: But wrung from pangs, and follow'd by And that was all he sought, so he avouches.
no prayers. Memmo. The accusation of the bribes Lored. He mutter'd many times between was proved.
his teeth, Senator. Not clearly, and the charge of But inarticulately. homicide
Barb. That I heard not ;
Barb. Methought, · Memmo. Then why not clear him ? To my surprise too, you were touch'd with Senator. That
mercy, They ought to answer; for it is well known And were the first to call out for assistance That Almoro Donato, as I said,
When he was failing. Was slain by Erizzo for private vengeance.
Lored. I believed that swoon Memmo. There must be more in this His last. strange process than
Barb. And have I not oft heard thee name The apparent crimes of the accused disclose-- His and his father's death your nearest wish? But here come two of the Ten: let us Lored. If he dies innocent, that is to say, retire. (Exeunt Memmo and Senator. With his guilt unavow'd, he'll be lamented.
Barb. What, wouldst thou slay his Enter LOREDANO and BARBARIGO.
memory? Barb. (addressing Loredano) That were Lored. Wouldst thou have
too much: believe me, 'twas not meet His state descend to his children, as it must, The trial should go further at this moment. I If be die unattainted ?
Barb. War with them too?
Senator. Thus the act confirm'd Lored. With all their house, till theirs By you and by the Ten, gives peace to or mine are nothing.
Venice. Barb. And the deep agony of his pale wife, Doge. 'Tis long since she enjoy'd it: may And the repress'd convulsion of the high
it be And princely brow of his old father, which As long ere she resume her arms! Broke forth in a slight shuddering, though Senator. Tis almost rarely,
Thirty-four years of nearly ceaseless warfare Or in some clammy drops, soon wiped away With the Turk, or the powers of Italy; In stern serenity; these moved you not ? The state had need of some repose.
[Exit Loredano. Doge. No doubt: He's silent in his hate, as Foscari
I found her Queen of Ocean, and I leave her Was in his suffering; and the poor wretch Lady of Lombardy: it is a comfort moved me
That I have added to her diadem More by his silence than a thousand outcries The gems of Brescia and Ravenna; Crema Could have effected. 'Twas a dreadful sight And Bergamo no less are hers; her realm When his distracted wife broke through into By land has grown by thus much in my The hall of our tribunal, and beheld
reign, What we could scarcely look upon,long used While her sea-sway has not shrunk. To such sights. I must think no more of Senator. Tis most true, this,
And merits all our country's gratitude. Lost I forget in this compassion for
Doge. Perhaps so. Our focs their former injuries, and lose Scnator. Which should be made manifest. The hold of vengeance Loredano plans Doge. I have not complain'd, sir. For him and me; but mine would be content Senator. My good lord, forgive me. With-lesser retribution than he thirsts for, Doge. For what? And I would mitigate his deeper hatred Senator. My heart bleeds for you. To inilder thoughts; but, for the present, Doge. For me, signor? Foscari
And for your-
[Exit Barbarigo. Senator. What my lord ?
Doge. This prattle
Of things you know not: but the treaty's A CT II.
Return with it to them who sent you. SCENE 1.-llall in the Doge's Palace.
Senator. I obey. I had in charge, too, The Dogs and a SENATOR.
from the Council,
That you would fix an hour for their reSenator. Is it your pleasure to sign the
Doge. Say, when they will-now, even Now, or postpone it till to-morrow ?
at this moment, Doge. Now;
If it so please them: Iam the state's servant. I overlook d it yesterday: it wants
Senator. They would accord some time Merely the signature. Give me the pen
for your repose. [The Doge sits down and signs the Doge. I have no repose, that is, none paper.
which shall cause There, signor.
The loss of an hour's time unto the state. Senator (looking at the paper). You have Let them meet when they will, I shall be forgot; it is not sign'd.
found Doge. Not sign’d? Ah, I perceive my Where I should be, and what I have been ever. eyes begin
[Erit Senator. To wax more weak with age. I did not see
[The Doge remains in silence. That I had dipp'd the pen without effect. Senator (dipping the pen into the ink,
Enter an Attendant.
Attendant. The illustrious lady Foscari
Requests an audience.
Dogo. Bid her enter. Poor
Dogo. That answer only shows you know Marina! (Exit Attendant.
not Venice. [The Doge remains in silence as before. Alas! how should you ? she knows not
herself, Enter MARINA.
In all her mystery. Hear me---they who aim Marina. I have ventured, father, on At Foscari, aim no less at his father; Your privacy.
The sire's destruction would not save the son; Doge. I have none from you, my child. They work by different means to the same Command my time, when not commanded by The state.
And that is--but they have not conquer'd yet. Marina. I wish'd to speak to you of him. Marina. But they have crush'd. Doge. Your husband?
Doge. Nor crush'd as yet-I live. Marina. And your son.
Marina. And your son,-how long will Doge. Proceed, my daughter!
he live? Marina. I had obtained permission from Doge. I trust, the Ten
For all that yet is past, as many years To attend my husband for a limited number And happier than his father. The rash boy, Of hours.
With womanish impatience to return, Doge. Yon had so.
Hath ruin'd all by that detected letter; Marina. 'Tis revoked.
A high crime, which I neither can deny Doge. By whom?
Nor palliate, as parent or as Duke: Marina. The Ten. When we had Had he but borne a little, little longer
reach'd the Bridge of Sighs, His Candiote exile, I had hopes—he has Which I prepared to pass with Foscari,
quench'd them, The gloomy guardian of that passage first He must return. Demurrid: a messenger was sent back to Marina. To exile ? The Ten; but as the court no longer sate, Doge. I have said it. And no permission had been given in writing, Marina. And can I not go with him? I was thrust back, with the assurance that Doge. You well know Until that high tribunal re-assembled This prayer of yours was twice denied before The dungeon-walls must still divide us. By the assembled Ten, and hardly now Doge. True,
Will be accorded to a third request, The form has been omitted in the haste Since aggravated errors on the part With which the court adjourn'd, and till it of your lord render them still more austere. meets
Marina. Austere ? Atrocious! The old Tis dubious.
human fiends, Marina. Till it meets! and when it meets, With one foot in the grave, with dim eyes, They'll torture him again; and he and I
strange Must purchase by renewal of the rack To tears save drops of dotage, with long The interview of husband and of wife,
white The holiest tie beneath the heavens? – Oh And scanty hairs, and shaking hands, and God!
heads Dost thou see this?
As palsied as their hearts are hard, they Doge. Child-child
council, Marina (abruptly). Call me not child! Cabal, and put men's lives out, as if life You soon will have no children-you deserve Were no more than the feelings long
extinguish'd You, who can talk thus calmly of a son In their accursed bosoms. In circumstances which would call forth Doge. You know not
Marina. I do—I do- and so should you, Of blood from Spartans! Though these did methinks
That these are demons: could it be else that Their boys who died in battle, is it written Men, who have been of women born and That they beheld them perish piecemeal, nor
suckled Stretch'd forth a hand to save them ? Who have loved, or talkd at least of loveDoge. You behold me:
have given I cannot weep-I would I could; but if Their hands in sacred vows- have danced Each white hair on this head were a young
their babes life,
Upon their knees, perhaps have mourn'd This ducal cap the diadem of earth,
above them This ducal ring with which I wed the waves In pain, in peril, or in death-who are, A talisman to still them-I'd give all Or were at least in seeming human, could For him.
Do as they have done by yours, and you Marina With less he surely might be yourself, saved.
You, who abet them?
he not so,
Doge. I forgive this, for
For what he suffers, not for what he did. You know not what you say.
"Tis ye who are all traitors, tyrant!-ye! Marina. You know it well,
Did you but love your country like this And feel it nothing.
victim, Doge. I have borne so much,
Who totters back in chains to tortures, and That words have ceased to shake me. Submits to all things rather than to exile, Marina. Oh, no doubt!
You'd fling yourselves before him, and You have seen your son's blood flow, and implore your flesh shook not;
His grace for your enormous guilt.
The deaths of the two sons Heaven took Doge. Woman, this clamorous grief of
Than Jacopo's disgrace.
Doge. Time may restore his memory-
I would hope so. Strange to thy heart - how came it on thy He was my pride, my-but 'tis useless nowlips?
I am not given to tears, but wept for joy Doge. I must bear these reproaches, When he was born: those drops were though they wrong me.
ominous. Couldst thuu but read
Marina. I say he's innocent: and were
In fatal moments ?
Doge (pointing downwards). There ! But I have other duties than a father's;
The state would not dispense me from those Doge. To which I am tending: when
Enter an Attendant.
Attendant. A message from
Doge. Who bears it?
Doge. He!-but admit him.
[Exit Attendant. fit one
Marina. Must I then retire ? To mingle with my name; that name shall be, Doge. Perhaps it is not requisite, if this As far as I have borne it, what it was Concerns your husband, and if not-Well, When I received it.
signor, Marina. But for the poor children
Your pleasure! [To Loredano entering. Of him thou canst not, or thou wilt not save: Lored. I bear that of the Ten. You were the last to bear it.
Doge. They Doge. Would it were so !
Have chosen well their envoy. Better for him he never had been born,
Lored. Tis their choice Better for me.-I have seen our house dis- Which leads me here. honour'd.
Doge. It does their wisdom honour, Marina. That's false! A truer, nobler, And no less to their courtesy.- Proceed. trustier heart,
Lored. We have decided. More loving, or more loyal, never beat
Doge. We? Within a human breast. I would not change Lored. The Ten in council. My exiled, persecuted, mangled husband, Doge. What! have they met again, and Oppress'd but not disgraced, crush'd, over
met without whelm’d,
Apprizing me? Alive, or dead, for prince or paladin Lored. They wish'd to spare your In story or in fable, with a world
feelings, To back his suit. Dishonour'd !-he dis- No less than age. honour'd!
Doge. That's now -- when spared they I tell thee, Doge, 'tis Venice is dishonour'd;
either? His name shall be her foulest, worstreproacb, I thank them, notwithstanding.