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I could produce such damning proof
Hor, 'Tis false !
Loth. It is the curse of fools to be secure,
Hor. Hold, Sir; another word, and then farewel:
Loth. What if we pass beyond this solemn order, And, in defiance of the stern Horatio, Indulge our gayer thoughts, let laughter loose, 300 And use his sacred friendship for our mirth?
Hor. 'Tis well, Sir, you are pleasant
Loth. By the joys
But like the birds, great Nature's happy commoners,
Hor. What liberty has vain presumptuous youth,
320 Loth. Is then my way in Genoa prescrib’d By a dependent on the wretched Altamont, A talking Sir, that brawls for him in taverns, And vouches for his valour's reputation ?
Hor. Away! thy speech is fouler than thy manners.
Loth. Or, if there be a name more vile, his parasite; A beggar's parasite! Hor. Now learn humanity,
[Offers to strike him, Rossano interposes. Since brutes and boys are only taught with blows. Loth. Damnation !
Loth. Oh, Rossano!
Ros. Sciolto's servants, too, have ta'en th’alarm; You'll be oppress'd by numbers. Be advis'd, Or I must force you hence. Tak’t on my word, You shall have justice done you on Horatio. Put up, my lord.
340 Loth. This wo'not brook delay; West of the town a mile, among the rocks, Two hours ere noon, to-morrow, I expect thee, Thy single hand to mine.
Hor. I'll meet thee there.
Loth. To-morrow, Oh, my better stars ! to-morrow Exert your influence; shine strongly for me ; 'Tis not a common conquest I would gain, Since love as well as arms, must grace my triumph.
[Exeunt LOTHARIO and Rossano, Hor. Two hours ere noon to-morrow! ha! ere that He sees Calista! Oh, unthinking foolWhat if I urg'd her with the crime and danger ? If any spark from Heav'n remain uinquench'd Within her breast, my breath perhaps may wake it. Could I but prosper there, I would not doubt My combat with that loud vain-glorious boaster. Were you, ye fair, but cautious whom ye trust, Did you but think how seldom fools are just, So many of your sex would not in vain Of broken vows, and faithless men, complain: 360 Of all the various wretches love has made, How few have been by men of sense betray'd? Convinc'd by reason, they your pow'r confess,
Pleas'd to be happy, as you're pleas’d to bless,
AEt III. SCENE 1.
An Apartment in Sciolto's Palace. Enter SCIOLTO
Sciolto. Now, by my life, my honour, 'tis too much! Have I not mark'd thee, wayward as thou art, Perverse and sullen all this day of joy? When ev'ry heart was cheer'd and mirth went round, Sorrow, displeasure, and repining anguish, Sat on thy brow; “ like some malignant planet, “ Foe to the harvest and the healthy year, “ Who scowls adverse, and lours upon the world ; " When all the other stars, with gentle aspect, “ Propitious shine, and meaning good to man."
Cal. Is then the task of duty half perform’d?
Sci. Dost thou complain?
Cal. For pity do not frown then,
For, Oh! that sorrow which has drawn your anger, Is the sad native of Calista's breast : “ And once possess’d, will never quit its dwelling, “ Till life, the prop of all, shall leave the building, “To tumble down, and moulder into ruin."
Sci. Now by the sacred dust of that dear saint That was thy mother; “ by her wond'rous goodness, “ Her soft, her tender, most complying sweetness,” I swear, some sullen thought that shuns the light, Lurks underneath that sadness in thy visage. But mark me well, tho' by yon Heav'n I love thee As much, I think, as a fond parent can; Yet should'st thou, (which the pow’rs above forbid) E’er stain the honour of thy name with infamy, I'll cast thee off, as one whose impious hands Had rent asunder nature's nearest ties, Which, once divided, never join again. To-day I've made a noble youth thy husband ! Consider well his worth; reward his love ; Be willing to be happy, and thou art so.
[Exit Sciolto. Cal. How hard is the condition of our sex, 40 Thro' ev'ry state of life the slaves of man! In all the dear delightful days of youth A rigid father dictates to our wills, And deals out pleasure with a scanty hand. To his, the tyrant husband's reign succeeds; Proud with opinion of superior reason, He holds domestic bus'ness and devotion