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The Duke will soon assemble

A mighty army: all comes crowding, streaming
To banners, dedicate by destiny,

To fame, and prosperous fortune. I behold
Old times come back again! he will become
Once more the mighty Lord which he has been.
How will the fools, who 've now deserted him,
Look then? I can't but laugh to think of them,
For lands will he present to all his friends,
And like a King and Emperor reward
True services; but we 've the nearest claims.

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What! we are masters here; no soul shall dare
Avow himself imperial where we 've the rule.
Gordon! good night, and for the last time, take
A fair leave of the place. Send out patroles
To make secure, the watch-word may be alter'd
At the stroke of ten; deliver in the keys

To the Duke himself, and then you 've quit for ever
Your wardship of the gates, for on to-morrow
The Swedes will take possession of the citadel.
TERTSKY (as he is going, to BUTLER).
You come, though, to the castle?

BUTLER.

At the right time. [Exeunt TERTSKY and ILLO.

SCENE VIII

GORDON and BUTLER.

GORDON (looking after them). Unhappy men! How free from all foreboding! They rush into the outspread net of murder, In the blind drunkenness of victory;

I have no pity for their fate. This Illo,

This overflowing and fool-hardy villain

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A fateful evening doth descend upon us,
And brings on their long night! Their evil stars
Deliver them unarm'd into our hands,
And from their drunken dream of golden fortunes
The dagger at their heart shall rouse them. Well,
The Duke was ever a great calculator;

His fellow-men were figures on his chess-board,

To move and station, as his game required.

Other men's honour, dignity, good name,

Did he shift like pawns, and made no conscience of it:
Still calculating, calculating still;

And yet at last his calculation proves
Erroneous; the whole game is lost; and lo!
His own life will be found among the forfeits.

GORDON.

O think not of his errors now; remember
His greatness, his munificence, think on all
The lovely features of his character,
On all the noble exploits of his life,
And let them, like an angel's arm, unseen
Arrest the lifted sword.

BUTLER.

It is too late.

I suffer not myself to feel compassion,
Dark thoughts and bloody are my duty now:
[Grasping GORDON'S hand.
Gordon! 't is not my hatred (I pretend not
To love the Duke, and have no cause to love him),
Yet 't is not now my hatred that impels me
To be his murderer. 'T is his evil fate.
Hostile concurrences of many events
Control and subjugate me to the office.
In vain the human being meditates

Free action. He is but the wire-work'd' puppet
Of the blind power, which out of his own choice
Creates for him a dread necessity.

What too would it avail him, if there were
A something pleading for him in my heart-
Still I must kill him.

GORDON.

If your heart speak to you, Follow its impulse. 'T is the voice of God. Think you your fortunes will grow prosperous Bedew'd with blood-his blood? Believe it not!

1 We doubt the propriety of putting so blasphemous a sentiment

That would fain bathe himself in his Emperor's blood.-- in the mouth of any character. T.

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BUTLER.

You know not. Ask not! Wherefore should it happen,
That the Swedes gain'd the victory, and hasten
With such forced marches hitherward? Fain would I
Have given him to the Emperor's mercy.-Gordon!
I do not wish his blood-But I must ransom

The honour of my word,-it lies in pledge-
And he must die, or--

[Passionately grasping GORDON'S hand.
Listen then, and know!

I am dishonour'd if the Duke escape us.

GORDON.

O! to save such a man-

BUTLER.

What!

GORDON.

It is worth

A sacrifice.-Come, friend! Be noble-minded!
Our own heart, and not other men's opinions,
Forms our true honour.

BUTLER (with a cold and haughty air).
He is a great Lord,

This Duke-and I am but of mean importance.
This is what you would say? Wherein concerns it
The world at large, you mean to hint to me,
Whether the man of low extraction keeps
Or blemishes his honour-

So that the man of princely rank be saved.
We all do stamp our value on ourselves.

The price we challenge for ourselves is given us.
There does not live on earth the man so station'd,
That I despise myself compared with him.
Man is made great or little by his own will;
Because I am true to mine, therefore he dies.

GORDON.

I am endeavouring to move a rock.

Thou hadst a mother, yet no human feelings. I cannot hinder you, but may some God Rescue him from you!

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[Exit GORDON.

Here we are, General.

DEVEREUX.

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