ePub 版

Thra. Though I be young and of a tender age.
Yet will I cope with Locrine when he dares.
My noble father with his conquering sword
Slew the two giants, kings of Aquitain.
Thrasimachus is not so degenerate,

That he should fear and tremble at the looks
Or taunting words of a Venerean squire.*
Loc. Menacest thou thy royal sovereign?
Uncivil, not beseeming such as you.
Injurious traitor (for he is no less

That at defiance standeth with his king),

Leave these thy taunts, leave these thy bragging words,
Unless thou mean'st to leave thy wretched life.

Thra. If princes stain their glorious dignity

With ugly spots of monstrous infamy,

They leeset their former estimation,

And throw themselves into a hell of hate.

Loc. Wilt thou abuse my gentle patience,

As though thou didst our high displeasure scorn?

Proud boy, that thou mayst know thy prince is moved,
Yea, greatly moved at this thy swelling pride,

We banish thee for ever from our court.

Thra. Then, losel‡ Locrine, look unto thyself; Thrasimachus will 'venge this injury.

Loc. Farewell, proud boy, and learn to use § thy tongue.
Assa. Alas, my lord, you should have call'd to mind

The latest words that Brutus spake to you;

How he desired you, by the obedience

That children ought to bear unto their sire,
To love and favour Lady Guendolen.

Consider this, that if the injury

Do move her mind, as certainly it will,

War and dissension follows speedily.

What though her power be not so great as yours?
Have you not seen a mighty elephant

Slain by the biting of a silly mouse?

Even so the chance of war inconstant is.

Loc. Peace, uncle, peace, and cease to talk hereof; For he that seeks, by whispering this or that,

To trouble Locrine in his sweetest life,

Let him persuade himself to die the death.


Est. O say me, page, tell me, where is the king. Wherefore doth he send for me to the court?

Is it to die? is it to end my life?

Say me, sweet boy; tell me and do not feign.


Page. No, trust me, madam: if you will credit the little

A follower of Venus.

An unworthy wretch.

I Say to me.

† I. e. loose.

§ I, e. use it with propriety.

honesty that is yet left me, there is no such danger as you fear. But prepare yourself; yonder 's the king.

Est. Then, Estrild, lift thy dazzled spirits up,
And bless that blessed time, that day, that hour,
That warlike Locrine first did favour thee.
Peace to the king of Brittany, my love!
Peace to all those that love and favour him!
Loc. Doth Estrild fall with such submission
Before her servant, king of Albion ?
Arise, fair lady, leave this lowly cheer;
Lift up those looks that cherish Locrine's heart,
That I may freely view that roseal face,
Which so entangled hath my love-sick breast.
Now to the court, where we will court it out,
And pass the night and day in Venus' sports.
Frolic, brave peers; be joyful with your king.



[Taking her up.



Guen. You gentle winds, that with your modest blasts
Pass through the circuit of the heavenly vault,

Enter the clouds, unto the throne of Jove,
And bear my prayers to his all-hearing ears,
For Locrine hath forsaken Guendolen,

And learn'd to love proud Humber's concubine.
You happy sprites, that in the concave sky
With pleasant joy enjoy your sweetest love,

Shed forth those tears with me, which then you shed
When first you woo'd your ladies to your wills:

Those tears are fittest for my woeful case,

Since Locrine shuns my nothing-pleasant face.

Blush heavens, blush sun, and hide thy shining beams;
Shadow thy radiant locks in gloomy clouds;
Deny thy cheerful light unto the world,
Where nothing reigns but falsehood and deceit.
What said I? falsehood? ay, that filthy crime,
For Locrine hath forsaken Guendolen.
Behold the heavens do wail for Guendolen ;
The shining sun doth blush for Guendolen;
The liquid air doth weep for Guendolen ;
The very ground doth groan for Guendolen.
Ay, they are milder than the Britain king,
For he rejecteth luckless Guendolen.

Thra. Sister, complaints are bootless in this cause,
This open wrong must have an open plague,

This plague must be repaid with grievous war

This war must finish with Locrinus' death:

His death must soon extinguish our complaints.

Guen. O no; his death will more augment my woes: He was my husband, brave Thrasimachus,

[blocks in formation]

More dear to me than the apple of mine eye;
Nor can I find in heart to work his scathe.*
Thra. Madam, if not your proper injuries,
Nor my exile, can move you to revenge,
Think on our father Corineus' words;
His words to us stand always for a law.

Should Locrine live, that caused my father's death ?
Should Locrine live, that now divorceth you?

The heavens, the earth, the air, the fire reclaim;+
And then why should all we deny the same?

Guen. Then henceforth farewell womanish complaints!
All childish pity henceforth then farewell!
But cursed Locrine, look unto thyself;

For Nemesis, the mistress of revenge,

Sits arm'd at all points on our dismal blades:

And cursed Estrild, that inflamed his heart,

Shall, if I live, die a reproachful death.

Mad. Mother, though nature makes me to lament My luckless father's froward lechery,

Yet, for he wrongs my lady mother thus,

I, if I could, myself would work his death.

Thra. See, madam, see! the desire of revenge

Is in the children of a tender age.

Forward, brave soldiers, into Mercia,

Where we shall brave the coward to his face.




Loc. Tell me, Assaracus, are the Cornish choughs

In such great number come to Mercia?

And have they pitched there their petty host,

So close unto our royal mansion ?

Assa. They are, my lord, and mean incontinent To bid defiance to your majesty.

Loc. It makes me laugh, to think that Guendolen Should have the heart to come in arms against me. Est. Alas, my lord, the horse will run amain, When as the spur doth gall him to the bone: Jealousy, Locrine, hath a wicked sting.

Loc. Say'st thou so, Estrild, beauty's paragon?

Well, we will try her choler to the proof,

And make her know, Locrine can brook no braves.
March on, Assaracus; thou must lead the way,
And bring us to their proud pavilion.

*I. e. his destruction.


I. e. cry out against.


Thunder and lightning. Enter the GHOST of CORINEUS.

Ghost. Behold, the circuit of the azure sky
Throws forth sad throbs, and grievous suspires,*
Prejudicating Locrine's overthrow.

The fire casteth forth sharp darts of flames;
The great foundation of the triple world
Trembleth and quaketh with a mighty noise,
Presaging bloody massacres at hand.

The wandering birds that flutter in the dark
(When hellish Night in cloudy chariot seated,
Casteth her mists on shady Tellus' face,
With sable mantles covering all the earth),
Now fly abroad amid the cheerful day,
Foretelling some unwonted misery.
The snarling curs of darken'd Tartarus,
Sent from Avernus' ponds by Rhadamanth,
With howling ditties pester every wood.
The wat❜ry Naiads, and the lightfoot Fauns,
And all the rabble of the woody nymphs,
All trembling hide themselves in shady groves,
And shroud themselves in hideous hollow pits.
The boisterous Boreas thund'reth forth revenge :
The stony rocks cry out on sharp revenge:
The thorny bush pronounceth dire revenge.
Now, Corineus, stay and see revenge,
And feed thy soul with Locrine's overthrow.

Behold they come; the trumpets call them forth:
The roaring drums summon the soldiers.

Lo where their army glistereth on the plains.
Throw forth thy lightning, mighty Jupiter,


And pour thy plagues on cursed Locrine's head! [Stands aside. Enter LOCRINE, ESTRILD, ASSA RACUS, SABREN and their Soldiers at one side; THRASIMACHUS, GUENDOLEN, MADAN, and their followers at another.

Loc. What, is the tiger started from his cave?

Is Guendolen come from Cornubia,

That thus she braveth Locrine to the teeth?
And hast thou found thine armour, pretty boy,
Accompanied with these thy straggling mates?
Believe me, but this enterprise was bold,
And well deserveth commendation.

Guen. Ay, Locrine, traitorous Locrine, we are come,
With full pretencet to seek thine overthrow.

What have I done, that thou shouldst scorn me thus ?
What have I said, that thou shouldst me reject?
Have I been disobedient to thy words?

Have I bewray'd thy arcane secrecy?

Suspirations, signs.

† Intention.

I. e. thy secret secrecy.

Have I dishonoured thy marriage bed
With filthy crimes, or with lascivious lusts?
Nay, it is thou that hast dishonour'd it;
Thy filthy mind, o'ercome with filthy lusts,
Yieldeth unto affection's filthy darts.

Unkind, thou wrong'st thy first and truest feere;*
Unkind, thou wrong'st thy best and dearest friend;
Unkind, thou scorn'st all skilful Brutus' laws;
Forgetting father, uncle, and thyself.

Est. Believe me, Locrine, but the girl is wise,
And well would seem to make a vestal nun:

How finely frames she her oration!

Thra. Locrine, we came not here to fight with words,
Words that can never win the victory;

But, for you are so merry in your frumps,†
Unsheath your swords, and try it out by force,

That we may see who hath the better hand.

Loc. Think'st thou to dare me, bold Thrasimachus?

Think'st thou to feart me with thy taunting braves ?§
Or do we seem too weak to cope with thee?
Soon shall I show thee my fine cutting blade,
And with my sword, the messenger of death,
Seal thee an acquittance for thy bold attempts.



Enter LOCRINE, ASSARACUS, and Soldiers at one door; GUENDOLEN, THRASIMACHUS, and his forces at another. They fight. LOCRINE and his followers are driven back. Then re-enter LOCRINE and ESTRILD.

Loc. O fair Estrilda, we have lost the field;
Thrasimachus hath won the victory,
And we are left to be a laughing-stock,

Scoff'd at by those that are our enemies.

Ten thousand soldiers, arm'd with sword and shield,
Prevail against an hundred thousand men.
Thrasimachus, incensed with fuming ire,
Rageth amongst the faint-heart soldiers,

Like to grim Mars, when, cover'd with his targe,
He fought with Diomedes in the field,
Close by the banks of silver Simois.

O lovely Estrild, now the chase begins:
Ne'er shall we see the stately Troynovant,

Mounted on coursers garnish'd all with pearls;
Ne'er shall we view the fair Concordia,
Unless as captives we be thither brought.
Shall Locrine then be taken prisoner
By such a youngling as Thrasimachus?
Shall Guendolena captivate my love?

Ne'er shall mine eyes behold that dismal hour,
Ne'er will I view that ruthful spectacle;
For with my sword, this sharp curtle-axe,

I. e. mate.

+ Appal.

I. e. gibes, sneers. § Bravadoes.


« 上一頁繼續 »