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Remorse ;

A TRAGEDY, IN FIVE ACTS.

ALVAR.

DRAMATIS PERSONÆ.

ZULIMEZ.
Remorse is as the heart in which it grows :

If that be gentle, it drops balmy dews MARQUIS VALDEZ, Father to the two brothers, and of true repentance; but if proud and gloomy, Donna Teresa's Guardian.

It is a poison-tree that, pierced to the inmost,
Don ALVAR, the eldest son.

Weeps only tears of poison.
Don ORDONIO, the youngest son.
MONVIEDRO, a Dominican and Inquisilor.
ZULIMEZ, the faithful attendant on Alvar.

And of a brother, ISIDORE, a Moresco Chieftain, ostensibly a Christian.

Dare I hold this, unproved ? nor make one effort. FAMILIARS OF THE INQUISITION.

To save him?-Hear me, friend! I have yet to tell theo Naomi.

That this same life, which he conspired to take, Moors, SERVANTS, etc.

Himself once rescued from the angry flood, Donna TERESA, an Orphan Heiress.

And at the imminent hazard of his own. ALHADRA, Wife to Isidore.

Add too my oathTIME. The reign of Philip II., just at the close of

You have thrice told already the civil wars against the Moors, and during the The years of absence and of secrecy; heat of the persecution which raged against them, To which a forced oath bound you : if in truth shortly after the edict which forbade the wearing A suborn'd murderer have the power to dictate of Moresco apparel under pain of death.

A binding oath

ZULIMEZ.

ALVAR.

ZULIMEZ.

ZULIMEZ.

ALVAR.

ALVAR.

ZULIMEZ.

My long captivity

Left me no choice: the very Wish too languish'd
REMORSE.

With the fond Hope that nursed it; the sick babe
Droop'd at the bosom of its famish'd mother

But (more than all) Teresa's perfidy;
ACT I.

The assassin's strong assurance, when no interest,

No motive could have tempted him to falsehood : SCENE I.

In the first pangs of his awaken’d conscience, The Sea Shore on the Coast of Granada. When with abhorrence of his own black purpose

The murderous weapon, pointed at my breast, Don Alvar, wrapt in a Boat-cloak, and ZULIMEZ Fell from his palsied hand(a Moresco), both as just landed

Heavy presumption! No sound, no face of joy to welcome us!

It weigh'd not with me-Hark! I will tell thee all: My faithful Zulimez, for one brief moment

As we pass'd by, I bade thee mark the base Let me forget my anguish and thcir crimes.

Of yonder cliff-
If aught on earth demand an unmix'd feeling,
'Tis surely this—after long years of exile,

That rocky seat you mean,
To step forth on firm land, and gazing round us,
To hail at once our country, and our birth-place.

Shaped by the billows ?-
Hail, Spain! Granada, hail! once more I press

There Teresa met me, | Thy sands with filial awe, land of my fathers !

The morning of the day of my departure. | Then claim your rights in it! O, revered Don Alvar,

We were alone: the purple hue of dawn Yet, yet give up your all too gentle purpose.

Fell from the kindling east aslant upon us, It is too hazardous ! reveal yourself,

And, blending with the blushes on her cheek, And let the guilty meet the doom of guilt!

Suffused the tear-drops there with rosy light.

There seem'd a glory round us, and Teresa
ALVAR.
Remember, Zulimez! I am his brother:

The angel of the vision ! [Then with agitation

Hadst thou seen
Injured, indeed! O deeply injured! yet
Ordonio's brother.

How in each motion her most innocent soul

Beam'd forth and brighten'd, thou thyself wouldst Nobly-minded Alvar! This sure but gives his guilt a blacker dye.

Guilt is a thing impossible in her!

She must be innocent! The more behoves it, I should rouse within him

ZYLIMEZ (with a sigh). Romorse! that I should save him from himself.

Proceed, my Lord!

ALVAR.

ZULIMEZ.

ZULIMEZ.

tell me,

ALVAR.

ALVAR.

ZULIMEZ.

TERESA.

TERESA.

Now to the cave beneath the vaulted rock, A portrait which she had procured by stealth Where having shaped you to a Moorish chieftain, (For ever then it seems her heart foreboded

I will seek our mariners; and in the dusk Or knew Ordonio's moody rivalry),

Transport whate'er we need to the small dell A portrait of herself with thrilling hand

In the Alpuxarras—there where Zagri lived.
She tied around my neck, conjuring me

ALVAR.
With earnest prayers, that I would keep it sacred I know it well : it is the obscurest haunt
To my own knowledge: nor did she desist,

Of all the mountains

[Both stand listening Till she had won a solemn promise from me,

Voices at a distance! That (save my own) no eye should e'er behold it Let us away!

[Ereunt. Till my return. Yet this the assassin knew, Knew that which none but she could have disclosed.

SCENE II.
A damning proof!

Enter TERESA and VALDEZ.
ALVAR.

My own life wearied me!
And but for the imperative Voice within,

I hold Ordonio dear; he is your son
With mine own hand I had thrown off the burthen. And Alvar's brother.
That Voice, which quell’d me, calm'd me: and I

VALDEZ.
sought

Love him for himself, The Belgic states: there join'd the better cause ;

Nor make the living wretched for the dead. And there too fought as one that courted death! Wounded, I fell among the dead and dying, In death-like trance : a long imprisonment follow'd. I mourn that you should plead in vain, Lord Valdez The fullness of my anguish by degrees

But heaven hath heard my vow, and I remain Waned to a meditative melancholy;

Faithful to Alvar, be he dead or living. And still, the more I mused, my soul became

VALDEZ. More doubtful, more perplex’d; and still Teresa,

Heaven knows with what delight I saw your loves, Night after night, she visited my sleep,

And could my heart's blood give him back to thee, Now as a saintly sufferer, wan and tearful, I would die smiling. But these are idle thoughts; Now as a saint in glory beckoning to me!

Thy dying father comes upon my soul Yes, still, as in contempt of proof and reason,

With that same look, with which he gave thee to me, I cherish the fond faith that she is guiltless!

I held thee in my arms a powerless babe, Hear then my fix'd resolve: I'll linger here

While thy poor mother with a mute entreaty In the disguise of a Moresco chieflain.

Fix'd her faint eyes on mine. Ah not for this, The Moorish robes ?

That I should let thee feed thy soul with gloom,

And with slow anguish wear away thy life,
ZULIMEZ.

The victim of a useless constancy.
All, all are in the sea-cave,
Some furlong hence. I bade our mariners

I must not see thee wretched.
Secrete the boat there.

There are woes Above all, the picture

Ill-barter'd for the garishness of joy! Of the assassination

If it be wretched with an untired eye

To watch those skiey tints, and this green ocean; Be assured

Or in the sultry hour beneath some rock, That it remains uninjured.

My hair dishevell’d by the pleasant sea-breeze,

To shape sweet visions, and live o'er again
ALVAR.
Thus disguised,

All past hours of delight! If it be wretched
I will first seek to meet Ordonio's—wife!

To watch some bark, and fancy Alvar there, If possible, alone too. This was her wonted walk, To go through each minutest circumstance And this the hour; her words, her very looks

Of the blest meeting, and to frame adventures Will acquit her or convict.

Most terrible and strange, and hear him tell them;

* (As once I knew a crazy Moorish maid Will they not know you? Who drest her in her buried lover's clothes,

And o'er the smooth spring in the mountain cleft With your aid, friend, I shall unfearingly

Hung with her lute, and play'd the self-same tune Trust the disguise; and as to my complexion,

He used to play, and listen'd to the shadow My long imprisonment, the scanty food,

Herself had made)—if this be wretchedness, This scar,—and toil beneath a burning sun,

And if indeed it be a wretched thing

To trick out mine own death-bed, and imagine Have done already half the business for us.

That I had died, died just ere his return!
Add too my youth, when last we saw each other.
Manhood has swoln my chest, and taught my voice Or hover round, as he at midnight oft

Then see him listening to my constancy,
A hoarser note-Besides, they think me dead :
And what the mind believes impossible,
The bodily sense is slow to recognize.

Here Valdez bends back, and smiles at her wildness, which Teresn noticing, checks her enthusiasm, and in a booth

ing half-playful tone and manner, apologizes for her fancy 'Tis yours, Sir, to command; mine to obey.

by the little tale in the parenthesis.

TERESA.

ALVAR

ZULIMEZ.

ZULIMEZ.

ALVAR.

ZULIMEZ.

TERESA.

VALDEZ.

OR DONIO.

TERESA.

Sits on my grave and gazes at the moon;

His wounds and perilous voyages, and how Or haply, in some more fantastic mood,

With an heroic fearlessness of danger To be in Paradise, and with choice flowers He roam'd the coast of Afric for your Alvar. Build up a bower where he and I might dwell, It was not well-You have moved me even to tears And there to wait his coming ! O my sire ! My Alvar's sire! if this be wretchedness

Oh pardon me, Lord Valdez! pardon me! That eats away the life, what were it, think you,

It was a foolish and ungrateful speech, If in a most assured reality

A most ungrateful speech! But I am hurried Ile should return, and see a brother's infant

Beyond myself, if I but hear of one Smile at him from my arms ?

Who aims to rival Alvar. Were we not Oh, what a thought! [Clasping her forehead. Born in one day, like twins of the same parent ?

Nursed in one cradle ? Pardon me, my father!
A thought? even so! mere thought! an empty thought. A six years' absence is a heavy thing,
The very week he promised his return-

Yet still the hope survives,
TERESA (abruptly).

VALDEZ (looking forward).
Was it not then a busy joy? to see him,

Hush ! 'tis Monviedro.
After those three years' travels! we had no fears-

TERESA
The frequent tidings, the ne'er-failing letter, The Inquisitor! on what new scent of blood ?
Almost endear'd his absence! Yet the gladness,
The tumult of our joy! What then if now-

Enter MONVIEDRO with ALHADRA.
VALDEZ.

MONVIEDRO (having first made his obersance to O power of youth to feed on pleasant thoughts,

VALDEZ and TERESA).
Spite of conviction! I am old and heartless !
Yes, I am old—I have no pleasant fancies- Peace and the truth be with you! Good my Lord,
Hectic and unrefresh'd with rest-

My present need is with your son.
TERESA (with great tenderness)

(Looking forward My father! We have hit the time. Here comes he! Yes, 't is he VALDEZ.

Enter from the opposite side Don ORDONIO.
The sober truth is all too much for me!
I see no sail which brings not to my mind

My Lord Ordonio, this Moresco woman
The home-bound bark in which my son was captured (Alhadra is her name) asks audience of you.
By the Algerine—to perish with his captors !

Hail, reverend father! what may be the business? Oh no! he did not !

MONVIEDRO.

My Lord, on' strong suspicion of relapse Captured in sight of land ! To his false creed, so recently abjured, From yon hill point, nay, from our castle watch-tower The secret servants of the inquisition We might have seen

Have seized her husband, and at my command TERESA.

To the supreme tribunal would have led him, His capture, not his death. But that he made appeal to you, my Lord, VALDEZ.

As surety for his soundness in the faith. Alas! how aptly thou forgettist a tale

Though lessen'd by experience what small trust Thou ne'er didst wish to learn! my brave Ordonio The asseverations of these Moors deserve, Saw both the pirate and his prize go down,

Yet still the deference to Ordonio's name, In the same storm that baffled his own valor,

Nor less the wish to prove, with what high honor And thus twice snatch'd a brother from his hopes : The Holy Church regards her faithful soldiers, Gallant Ordonio! (pauses; then tenderly). O beloved Thus far prevail'd with me thatTeresa!

ORDONIO. Wouldst thou best prove thy faith to generous Alvar,

Reverend father, And most delight his spirit, go, make thou

I am much beholden to your high opinion, His brother happy, make his aged father

Which so o'erprizes my light services. Sink to the grave in joy.

[Then to ALHADRA TERESA.

I would that I could serve you ; but in truth
For mercy's sake,

Your face is new to me.
Press me no more! I have no power to love him.

MONVIEDRO. His proud forbidding eye, and his dark brow,

My mind foretold me, Chill me like dew damps of the unwholesome night: That such would be the event. In truth, Lord Valdez, My love, a timorous and tender flower,

’T was liule probable, that Don Ordonio, Closes beneath his touch.

That your illustrious son, who fought so bravely

Some four years since to quell these rebel Moors, You wrong him, maiden! Should prove the patron of this infidel! You wrong him, by my soul! Nor was it well The guarantee of a Moresco's faith! To character by such unkindly phrases

Now I return. The stir and workings of that love for you

ALHADRA. Which he has toil'd to smother, "T was not well, My Lord, my husband's name Nor is it grateful in you to forget

Is Isidore. (ORDONIO starts.)—You may remember it

VALDEZ.

VALDEZ.

ALHADRA.

VALDEZ.

TERESA.

ALHADRA.

TERESA.

ALHADRA.

Three years ago, three years this very week,
You left him at Almeria.

Not till my husband's free! I may not do it.

I will stay here.
MONVIEDRO.
Palpably false !

TERESA (aside).

Who is this Isidore ?
This very week, three years ago, my Lord
(You needs must recollect it by your wound),
You were at sea, and there engaged the pirates,

Daughter!
The murderers doubtless of your brother Alvar!

[TERESA looks at MONVIEDRO with disgust and with your permission, my dear Lord,

horror. Ordonio's appearance to be collected I'll loiter yet awhile i' enjoy the sea breeze.
from what follows.

(Exeunt VALDEZ, MONVIEDRO, and ORDONIO
MONVIEDRO (10 VALDEZ, and pointing at ORDONIO).
What! is he ill, my Lord ? how strange he looks !

Hah! there he goes! a bitter curse go with him,

A scathing curse!
VALDEZ (angrily).

(Then as if recollecting herself, and with a timid look) You press'd upon him too abruptly, father,

You hate him, don't you, lady? The fate of one, on whom, you know, he doted.

TERESA (perceiving that ALHADRA is conscious she has ORDONIO (starting as in sudden agitation).

spoken imprudently).
O Heavens! I? I-doied ? (then recovering himself). Oh fear not me! my heart is sad for you.
Yes! I doted on him.

ALHADRA.
[Ordongo walks to the end of the stage. These fell inquisitors! these sons of blood !
VALDEZ follows, soothing him.

As I came on, his face so madden'd me,
TERESA (her eye following ORDONIO). That ever and anon I clutch'd my dagger
I do not, can not, love him.

Is my heart hard ?

And half unsheathed it-
Is my heart hard ? that even now the thought
Should force itself upon me?—Yet I feel it!

Be more calm, I pray you
MONVIEDRO.
The drops did start and stand upon his forehead !

And as he walked along the narrow path
I will return. In very truth, I grieve
To have been the occasion. Ho! attend me, woman!

Close by the mountain's edge, my soul grew eager;

'Twas with hard toil I made myself remember ALHADRA (10 TERESA).

That his Familiars held my babes and husband.
O gentle lady! make the father stay,

To have leapt upon him with a tiger's plunge,
Until my Lord recover.
I am sure,

And hurl'd him down the rugged precipice,
That he will say he is my husband's friend.

O, it had been most sweet!
TERESA.

TERESA.
Stay, father! stay! my Lord will soon recover.

Hush! hush for shame!
ORDONIO (as they return, to VALDEZ). Where is your woman's heart?
Strange, that this Monviedro

ALHADRA.
Should have the power so to distemper me!

O gentle lady!

You have no skill to guess my many wrongs,
Nay, 't was an amiable weakness, son!

Many and strange! Besides (ironically), I am a Chris-
MONVIEDRO.

tian, My Lord, I truly griever

And Christians never pardon—'tis their faith!
ORDONIO.

TERESA.
Tut! name it not.

Shame fall on those who so have shown it to thee!
A sudden seizure, father! think not of it.

ALHADRA. As to this woman's husband, I do know him.

I know that man; 't is well he knows not me.
I know him well, and that he is a Christian.

Five years ago (and he was the prime agent),
MONVIEDRO.

Five years ago the holy brethren seized me.
I hope, my Lord, your merely human pity

TERESA. Doth not prevail

What might your crime be?

ALHADRA. "Tis certain that he was a Catholic;

I was a Moresco!
What changes may have happen'd in three years,
I cannot say; but grant me this, good father :

They cast me, then a young and nursing mother,

Into a dungeon of their prison-house,
Myself I'll sift him: if I find him sound,
You'll grant me your authority and name

Where was no bed, no fire, no ray of light,
To liberate lis house.

No touch, no sound of comfort! The black air,

It was a toil to breathe it! when the door,
Your zeal, my Lord,

Slow opening at the appointed hour, disclosed
And your late merits in this holy warfare,

One human countenance, the lamp's red flame
Would authorize an ampler trust-you have it

Cower'd as it enter'd, and at once sunk down.
Oh miserable! by that lamp to see

My infant quarrelling with the coarse hard bread
I will attend you home within an hour.

Brought daily : for the little wretch was sickly-
VALDEZ.

My rage had dried away its natural food
Meantime, return with us and take refreshment. In darkness I remain'd-the dull bell counting,

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VALDEZ.

ORDONIO.

MONVIEDRO.

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TERESA

TERESA.

Calm, very

TERESA.

ALHADRA.

TERESA.

ALHADRA.

TERESA.

TERESA.

ALVAR.

Which haply told me, that all the all-cheering Sun
Was rising on our garden. When I dozed, If aught enforce you to concealment, Sir-
My infant's moanings mingled with my slumbers

ALHADRA.
And waked me.—If you were a mother, Lady, He trembles strangely.
I should scarce dare to tell you, that its noises

[ALVAR sinks down and hides his face in his robe. And peevish cries so fretted on my brain

TERESA. Tliat I have struck the innocent babe in anger.

See, we have disturb'd him.

[Approaches nearer to him O Heaven! it is too horrible to hear.

I pray you think us friends—uncowl your face, ALHADRA.

For you seem faint, and the night breeze blows healing What was it then to suffer ? "Tis most right I pray you think us friends! That such as you should hear it.—Know you not,

ALVAR (raising his head). What Nature makes you mourn, she bids you heal?

calm! Great Evils ask great Passions to redress them, 'Tis all too tranquil for reality! And Whirlwinds fitliest scatter Pestilence.

And she spoke to me with her innocent voice,

That voice, that innocent voice! She is no traitress You were at length released ?

TERESA.
Let us retire. (Haughtily to ALHADRA).
Yes, at length

[They advance to the front of the Stage. I saw the blessed arch of the whole heaven!

ALHADRA (with scorn).

He is indeed a Christian. 'T was the first time my infant smiled. No more For if I dwell upon that moment, Lady,

ALVAR (aside). A trance comes on which makes me o'er again

She deems me dead, yet wears no mourning garnent! All I then was-my knees hang loose and drag,

Why should my brother's—wife—wear mourning And my lip falls with such an idiot laugh,

garments ? That you would start and shudder!

[T. TERESA Your pardon, noble dame! that I disturb'd you :

But your husband I had just started from a frightful dream.
A month's imprisonment would kill him, Lady. Dreams tell but of the Past, and yet, 't is said,

They prophesy-
Alas, poor man!

The Past lives o'er again
ALHADRA.
He hath a lion's courage,

In its effects, and to the guilty spirit
Fearless in act, but feeble in endurance;

The ever-frowning Present is its image. Unfit for boisterous times. with gentle heart

TERESA. He worships Nature in the hill ana valley,

Traitress! (Then aside). Not knowing what he loves, but loves it all

What sudden spell o'ermasters me?

Why seeks he me, shunning the Moorish woman? Enter Alvax disguised as a MORESCO, and in Moorish [TERESA looks round uneasily, but gradually be garments.

comes attentive as ALVAR proceeds in the

next speech. TERESA.

ALVAR.
Know you that stately Moor?

I dreamt I had a friend, on whom I leant
ALHADRA.

With blindest trust, and a betrothed maid,
I know him not

Whom I was wont to call not mine, but me:
But doubt not he is some Moresco chieftain,

For mine own self seem'd nothing, lacking her. Who hides himself among the Alpuxarras.

This maid so idolized that trusted friend
TERESA.

Dishonor'd in my absence, soul and body!
The Alpuxarras ? Does he know his danger, Fear, following guilt, tempted to blacker guilt,
So near this seat?

And murderers were suborn'd against my life.
ALHADRA.

But by my looks, and most impassion'd words,
He wears the Moorish robes too, I roused the virtues that are dead in no man
As in defiance of the royal edict.

Even in the assassins' hearts ! they made their terms (ALHADRA advances to ALVAR, who has walked to And thank'd me for redeeming them from murder. the back of the stage near the rocks. TERESA

ALHADRA. drops her veil.

You are lost in thought: hear him no more, sweet Lady' ALHADRA

TERESA. Gallant Moresco! An inquisitor,

From morn to night I am myself a dreamer,
Monviedro, of known hatred to our race-

And slight things bring on me the idle mood !
ALVAR (interrupting her).

Well, Sir, what happen'd then ?
You have mistaken me. I am a Christian.

ALVAR
ALHADRA.

On a rude rock, He deemg, that we are plotting to ensnare him: A rock, methought, fast by a grove of firs, Speak to him, Lady—none can hear you speak, Whose thready leaves to the low breathing gala And not believe you innocent of guile.

Made a soft sound most like the distant ocean,

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