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For that's a soldier's call.
M. Mol . Thou'rt brave too late; Thou shouldst have died in battle, like a soldier.
Sebast. I fought and fell like one, but death deceived me;I wanted weight of feeble Moors upon me, To crush my soul out.
M. Mol. Still untameable! In what a ruin has thy head-strong pride, And boundless thirst of empire, plunged thy people!
Sebast. What sayst thou? ha! no more of that.
M. Mol Behold, What carcases of thine thy crimes have strewed, And left our Afric vultures to devour.
Bend. Those souls were those thy God intrusted with thee, To cherish, not destroy.
Sebast. Witness, O heaven, how much This sight concerns me! would I had a soul For each of these; how gladly would I pay The ransom down! But since I have but one, 'Tis a king's life, and freely 'tis bestowed. Not your false prophet, but eternal justice Has destined me the lot, to die for these: 'Tis fit a sovereign so should pay such subjects; For subjects such as they are seldom seen, Who not forsook me at my greatest need; Nor for base lucre sold their loyalty, But shared my dangers to the last event, And fenced them with their own. These thanks I pay you; [Wipes his eyes.
And know, that, when Sebastian weeps, his tears
M. Mol. They plead too strongly
But to the greatness of thy mind, Sebastian.
M. Mol. Do thou remember
AIul. Zei/d. One of his generous fits, too strong to last. [Aside to Benducar.
Bend. The Mufti reddens; mark that holy cheek.
He frets within, froths treason at his mouth, And churns it thro' his teeth; leave me to work him.
Seb. A mercy unexpected, undesired, Surprises more: you've learnt the art to vanquish. You could not,—give me leave to tell you, sir,— Have given me life but in my subjects' safety: Kings, who are fathers, live but in their people.
M. Mol. Still great, and grateful; that's thy character.—
Unveil the woman; I would view the face,
[Officers go to Almeyda to unveil her.
Aim. Stand off, ye slaves! I will not be unveiled.
M. Mol. Slave is thy title:—force her.
Sebast. On your lives, approach her not.
M. Mol. How's this!
Sebast. Sir, pardon me, And hear me speak.—
Aim. Hear me; I will be heard. I am no slave; the noblest blood of Afric Runs in my veins; a purer stream than thine: For, thoughderived from the same source, thy current Is puddled and defiled with tyranny. M. Mol. What female fury have we here!
Aim. I should be one,
Vol. Vii. x
Because of kin to thee. Wouldst thou be touched
Bend. Would I had never seen it! [Aside.
Aim. She whom thy Mufti taxed to have no soul; Let Afric now be judge. Perhaps thou think'st I meanly hope to 'scape, As did Sebastian, when he owned his greatness. But to remove that scruple, know, base man, My murdered father, and my brother's ghost, Still haunt this breast, and prompt it to revenge. Think not I could forgive, nor dar'st thou pardon.
M. Mol. Wouldst thou revenge thee, traitress, hadst thou power?
Aim. Traitor, I would; the name's more justly thine:Thy father was not, more than mine, the heir Of this large empire: but with arms united They fought their way, and seized the crown by force; And equal as their danger was their share: For where was eldership, where none had right But that which conquest gave? Twas thy an.bition Pulled from my peaceful father what his sword Helped thine to gain; surprised him and his kingdom, No provocation given, no war declared.
M. Mol. I'll hear no more.
Aim. This is the living coal, that, burning in me, Would flame to vengeance, could it find a vent; My brother too, that lies yet scarcely cold In his deep watery bed;—my wandering mother, Who in exile died— O that I had the fruitful heads of Hydra,
That one might bourgeon where another fell!
Whether the toils of battle, unrepaired
The body's unconcerned: I'll think hereafter.—
[Going off, stops.
Must. My chattels are come into my hands again, and my conscience will serve me to sell them twice
* This whimsical account of the Slave-market is probably taken from the following passage in the " Captivity and escape of Adam Elliot, M. A."—" By sun-rising next morning, we were all of us, who came last to Sallee, driven to market, where, the Moors sitting taylor-wise on stalls round about, we were severally run up and down by persons who proclaimed our qualities or trades, and what might best recommend us to the buyer. I had a great black who was appointed to sell me ; this fellow, holding me by the hand, coursed me up and down from one person to another, who called upon me at pleasure to examine what trade I was of, and to see what labour my hands had been accustomed to. All the seamen were soon bought up, but it was mid-day ere I could meet with a purchaser."—See A modest Vindication of Titus Oates, London, 1682.
over; any price now, before the Mufti come to claim them.
1st Mer. [To Must.] What dost hold that old fellow at?— [Painting to Alvak.] He's tough, and has no service in his limbs.
Must. I confess he's somewhat tough; but I suppose you would not boil him. I ask for him a thousand crowns.
1st Mer. Thou mean'st a thousand marvedis.
Must. Pr'ythee, friend, give me leave to know my own meaning.
1st Mer. What virtues has he to deserve that price?
Must. Marry come up, sir! virtues, quotha! I took him in the king's company; he's of a great family, and rich; what other virtues wouldst thou have in a nobleman?
1st Mer. I buy him with another man's purse, that's my comfort My lord Dorax, the governor, will have him at any rate:—There's hansel. Come, old fellow, to the castle.
A Ivor. To what is miserable age reserved! [Aside. But oh the king! and oh the fatal secret! Which I have kept thus long to time it better, And now I would disclose, 'tis past my power.
[Exit with his Master. Must. Something of a secret, and of the king, I heard him mutter: a pimp, I warrant him, fori am sure he is an old courtier. Now, to put off t'other remnant of my merchandize.—Stir up, sirrah! . * (To Ant.
Ant. Dog, what wouldst thou have?Must. Learn better manners, or I shall serve you a dog-trick; come down upon all-four immediately; I'll make you know your rider. Ant. Thou wilt not make a horse of me?