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“ In vain I call; for she, like fleeting air,
“ When press'd by some tempestuous wind, “ Flies swifter from the voice of my despair,
“ Nor casts one pitying look behind."
Sci. Take care my gates be open, bid all welcome ; All who rejoice with me to-day are friends: Let each indulge his genius, each be glad, Jocund and free, and swell the feast with mirth; The sprightly bowl shall chearfully go round, None shall be grave, nor too severely wise ; Losses and disappointments, cares and poverty, The rich man's insolence, and great man's scorn, In wine shall be forgotten all. To-morrow Will be too soon to think, and to be wretched. Oh, grant, ye pow'rs, that I may see these happy,
[Pointing to Alt. and Cal. Completely blest, and I have life enough; And leave the rest indifferently to fate.
[Exeunt. Hor. What if, while all are here intent on revelling, I privately went forth, and sought Lothario?
160 This letter may be forg’d; perhaps the wantonness Of his vain youth, to stain a lady's fame; Perhaps his malice to disturb
friend. Oh, no! my heart forebodes it must be true, Methought, ev'n now, I mark’d the starts of guilt That shook her soul; tho' damn'd dissimulation Screen'd her dark thoughts, and set to public view A specious face of innocence and beauty. " Oh, false appearance l What is all our sovereignty,
"Our boasted pow'r? When they oppose their arts,
The Street near Sciolto's Palace. Enter LOTHARIO
and ROSSANO. Loth. To tell thee then the purport of my thoughts; The loss of this fond paper would not give me A moment of disquiet, were it not
180 My instrument of vengeance on this Altamont; Therefore I mean to wait some opportunity Of speaking with the maid we saw this morning. Ros. I wish you, Sir, to think upon
the danger Of being seen; to-day their friends are round 'em; And
any eye that lights by chance on you, Shall put your life and safety to the hazard.
[They confer aside.
Enter HORATIO. Hor. Still I must doubt some mystery of mischief, Some artifice beneath. Lothario's father! I knew him well; he was sagacious, eunning,
Fluent in words, and bold in peaceful counsels,
and unartful—Ha! he's here! [Seeing him. Loth. Damnation ! He again !—This second time To-day he has cross'd me, like my evil genius.
Hor. I sought you, Sir.
The man who wrongs my friend To the earth's utmost verge I would pursue. No place, tho' e'er so holy should protect him; No shape that artful fear e'er form’d should hide him, 'Till he fair answer made, and did me justice.
Loth. Ha! dost thou know me, that I am Lothario ? As great a name as this proud city boasts of. Who is this mighty man, then, this Horatio, That I should basely hide me from his anger, Lest he should chide me for his friend's displeasure?
Hor. The brave, 'tis true, do never shun the light; Just are their thoughts, and open are their tempers, Freely without disguise they love and hate, Still are they found in the fair face of day, And Heav'n and men are judges of their actions.
Loth. Such let 'em be of mine ; there's not a purpose Which my soul e'er fram'd, or my hand acted, But I could well have bid the world look on, And what I once durst do, have dar'd to justify,
Hor. Where was this open boldness, this free spirit, When but this very morning I surpriz'd thee, In base, dishonest privacy, consulting And bribing a poor mercenary wretch, To sell her lady's secrets, stain her honour, And, with a forg'd contrivance, blast her virtue im At sight of me thou fled'st.
Loth. Hal fled from thee?
Hor. Thou fled'st, and guilt was on thee, like a thief, A pilferer, descry'd in some dark corner, Who there had lodg’d, with mischievous intent, To rob and ravage at the hour of rest. And do a midnight murder on the sleepers. Loth. Slave! villain !
[Offers to draw, Rossano holds him. Ros. Hold, my lord! think where you are, Think how unsafe and hurtful to your honour It were to urge a quarrel in this place, And shock the peaceful city with a broil. Loth. Then since thou dost provoke my vengeance,
know I would not, for this city's wealth, for all Which the sea wafts to our Ligurian shore,
240 But that the joys I reap'd with that fond wanton, The wife of Altamont, should be as public As is the noon-day sun, air, earth, or water, Or any common benefit of nature. Think'st thou I meant the shame should be conceal'd? Oh, no! by hell and vengeance, all I wanted Was some fit messenger to bear the news
To the dull doating husband : now I have found him, And thou art he.
Hor. I hold thee base enough To break through law, and spurn at sacred order, And do a brutal injury like this. Yet mark me well, young lord; I think Calista Too nice, too noble, and too great of soul, To be the prey of such a thing as thou art. ,Twas base and poor, unworthy of a man, To forge a scroll so villanous and loose, And mark it with a noble lady's name : These are the mean dishonest arts of cowards, Strangers to manhood, and to glorious dangers; 260 Who, bred at home in idleness and riot, Ransack for mistresses th’unwholesome stews, And never know the worth of virtuous love. Loth. Think'st thou I forg'd the letter? Think so
still, 'Till the broad shame come staring in thy face, And boys shall hoot the cuckold as he passes.
Hor. Away! no woman could descend so low : A skipping, dancing, worthless tribe you are ; Fit only for yourselves : you herd together; And when the circling glass warms your vain hearts, You talk of beauties that you never saw, And fancy raptures that you never knew.
Legends of saints who never yet had being, “ Or being, ne'er were saints, are not so false " As the fond tales which you recount of love."
Loth. But that I do not hold it worth my leisure;