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Ah! rather let me ask what mystery lowers
On Tallien's darken'd brow. Thou dost me wrong-
Thy soul distemper'd, can my heart be tranquil?


Tell me, by whom thy brother's blood was spilt?
Asks he not vengeance on these patriot murderers?
It has been borne too tamely. Fears and curses
Groan on our midnight beds, and e'en our dreams
Threaten the assassin hand of Robespierre.
He dies!-nor has the plot escaped his fears.


[ADELAIDE retires

Tallien! was this a time for amorous conference?
Henriot, the tyrant's most devoted creature,
Marshals the force of Paris: the fierce club,
With Vivier at their head, in loud acclaim
Have sworn to make the guillotine in blood

Float on the scaffold.-But who comes here?
Enter BARRERE abruptly.


Say, are ye friends to Freedom? I am her's!
Let us, forgetful of all common feuds,
Rally around her shrine! E'en now the tyrant
Concerts a plan of instant massacre!


Away to the Convention! with that voice
So oft the herald of glad victory,

Rouse their fallen spirits, thunder in their ears
The names of tyrant, plunderer, assassin!
The violent workings of my soul within
Anticipate the monster's blood?

[Cry from the street of "No Tyrant! Down with
the Tyrant!"


Hear ye that outcry?-If the trembling members
Even for a moment hold his fate suspended,
I swear, by the holy poniard that stabb'd Cæsar,
This dagger probes his heart!


[Exeunt omnes.

SCENE.-The Convention.
ROBESPIERRE (mounts the Tribune).
Once more befits it that the voice of Truth,
Fearless in innocence, though leaguer'd round
By Envy and her hateful brood of hell,
Be heard amid this hall; once more befits
The patriot, whose prophetic eye so oft
Has pierced through faction's veil, to flash on crimes
Of deadliest import. Mouldering in the grave
Sleeps Capet's caitiff corse; my daring hand
Levell'd to earth his blood-cemented throne,
My voice declared his guilt, and stirr'd up France
To call for vengeance. I too dug the grave
Where sleep the Girondists, detested band!
Long with the show of freedom they abused
Her ardent sons. Long time the well-turn'd phrase
Hate him as they fear him, Of declamation, thunder'd in this hall,
The high-fraught sentence, and the lofty tone


Yet-yet-be cautious! much I fear the Commune
The tyrant's creatures, and their fate with his
Fast link'd in close indissoluble union.
The Pale Convention-


Impatient of the chain, resolved and ready.


Th' enthusiast mob, Confusion's lawless sons


They are aweary of his stern morality,
The fair-mask'd offspring of ferocious pride.
The sections too support the delegates :
All-all is ours! e'en now the vital air
Of Liberty, condensed awhile, is bursting
(Force irresistible!) from its compressure-
To shatter the arch-chemist in the explosion!

Till reason 'midst a labyrinth of words
Perplex'd, in silence seem'd to yield assent.
I durst oppose. Soul of my honor'd friend!
Spirit of Marat, upon thee I call-

Thou know'st me faithful, know'st with what wa.


I urged the cause of justice, stripp'd the mask
From Faction's deadly visage, and destroy'd
Her traitor brood. Whose patriot arm hurl'd down
Hebert and Rousin, and the villain friends
Of Danton, foul apostate! those, who long
Mask'd Treason's form in Liberty's fair garb,

Long deluged France with blood, and durst defy
Omnipotence! but I, it seems, am false!
I am a traitor too! I-Robespierre!
I-at whose name the dastard despot brood

Look pale with fear, and call on saints to help them!
Who dares accuse me? who shall dare bélie
My spotless name? Speak, ye accomplice band,
Of what am I accused? of what strange crime
Is Maximilian Robespierre accused,

That through this hall the buzz of discontent
Should murmur? who shall speak?

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His merchant wiles! Oh, grant me patience, Heaven'
Was it by merchant wiles I gain'd you back
Toulon, when proudly on her captive towers
Waved high the English flag? or fought I then
With merchant wiles, when sword in hand I led
Your troops to conquest? Fought I merchant-like,
Or barter'd I for victory, when death
Strode o'er the reeking streets with giant stride,
And shook his ebon plumes, and sternly smiled
Amid the bloody banquet? when appall❜d,
The hireling sons of England spread the sail

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Matchless knave!

Heed we well

That justice guide our actions. No light import

What-not one blush of conscience on thy cheek-Attends this day. I move St-Just be heard.

Not one poor blush of truth! Most likely tale!
That I who ruin'd Brissot's towering hopes,
I who discover'd Hebert's impious wiles,
And sharp'd for Danton's recreant neck the ax,
Should now be traitor! had I been so minded,
Think ye I had destroy'd the very men
Whose plots resembled mine? Bring forth your proofs
Of this, deep treason. Tell me in whose breast
Found ye the fatal scroll? or tell me rather
Who forged the shameless falsehood?


Ask you proofs? Robespierre, what proofs were ask'd when Brissot died?


What proofs adduced you when the Danton died?
When at the imminent peril of my life
I rose, and fearless of thy frowning brow,
Proclaim'd him guiltless?


I remember well

The fatal day. I do repent me much

That I kill'd Cæsar and spared Antony.
But I have been too lenient. I have spared

The stream of blood, and now my own must flow
To fill the current.

[Loud applauses.
Triumph not too soon,

Justice may yet be victor.

Enter ST-JUST, and mounts the Tribune.


I come from the committee-charged to speak
Of matters of high import. I omit
Their orders. Representatives of France,
Boldly in his own person speaks St-Just
What his own heart shall dictate.


Hear ye this,


Inviolate be the sacred right of man,
The freedom of debate.


[Violent applause

I may be heard, then! much the times are changed
When St-Just thanks this hall for hearing him.
Robespierre is call'd a tyrant. Men of France,
Judge not too soon. By popular discontent
Was Aristides driven into exile,
Was Phocion murder'd? Ere ye dare pronounce
Robespierre is guilty, it befits ye well,
Consider who accuse him. Tallien,
Bourdon of Oise-the very men denounced,
For their dark intrigues disturb'd the plan
Of government. Legendre, the sworn friend
Of Danton, fall'n apostate. Dubois Crancé,
He who at Lyons spared the royalists—
Collot d'Herbois-


What-shall the traitor rem
His head amid our tribune-and blaspheme
Each patriot? shall the hireling slave of faction-


I am of no faction. I contend
Against all factions.


I espouse the cause
Of truth. Robespierre on yester-morn pronounced
Upon his own authority a report.
To-day St-Just comes down. St-Just neglects
What the committee orders, and harangues
From his own will. O citizens of France,

I weep for you-I weep for my poor country-
I tremble for the cause of Liberty,
When individuals shall assume the sway,
And with more insolence than kingly pride
Rule the republic.


Shudder, ye representatives of France,
Shudder with horror. Henriot commands
The marshall'd force of Paris-Henriot,
Foul parricide-the sworn ally of Hebert,
Denounced by all-upheld by Robespierre.
Who spared La Vallette? who promoted him,
Stain'd with the deep dye of nobility?
Who to an ex-peer gave the high command?
Who screen'd from justice the rapacious thief?
Who cast in chains the friends of Liberty?
Robespierre, the self-styled patriot Robespierre-
Robespierre, allied with villain Daubigné-
Robespierre, the foul arch-tyrant Robespierre.

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Oppression falls. The traitor stands appall'd-
Guilt's iron fangs engrasp his shrinking soul-
He hears assembled France denounce his crimes!
He sees the mask torn from his secret sins-
He trembles on the precipice of fate.
Fall'n guilty tyrant! murder'd by thy rage,
How many an innocent victim's blood has stain'd
Fair Freedom's altar! Sylla-like, thy hand
Mark'd down the virtues, that, thy foes removed,
Perpetual Dictator thou mightst reign,

And tyrannize o'er France, and call it freedom!
Long time in timid guilt the traitor plann'd
His fearful wiles-success embolden'd sin-
And his stretch'd arm had grasp'd the diadem
Ere now, but that the coward's heart recoil'd,
Lest France awaked, should rouse her from her dream,
And call aloud for vengeance. He, like Cæsar,
With rapid step urged on his bold career,
Even to the summit of ambitious power,
And deem'd the name of King alone was wanting.
Was it for this we hurl'd proud Capet down?

Is it for this we wage eternal war
Against the tyrant horde of murderers,
The crown'd cockatrices whose foul venom
Infects all Europe? was it then for this
We swore to guard our liberty with life,

That Robespierre should reign? the spirit of freedom
Is not yet sunk so low. The glowing flame
That animates each honest Frenchman's heart
Not yet extinguish'd. I invoke thy shade,
Immortal Brutus! I too wear a dagger;
And if the representatives of France,
Through fear or favor, should delay the sword
Of justice, Tallien emulates thy virtues;
Tallien, like Brutus, lifts the avenging arm;
Tahen shall save his country.

[Violent applauses.


I demand

The arrest of the traitors. Memorable Will be this day for France.


Yes! memorable

This day will be for France for villains triumph.


I will not share in this day's damning guilt.
Condemn me too.

[Great cry-Down with the Tyrants! (The two ROBESPIERRES, COUTHON, ST-JUST and Lebas are led off).

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The tyrants threaten us, as when they turn'd
The cannon's mouth on Brissot.

Enter another MESSENGER.


Vivier harangues the Jacobins-the club
Espouse the cause of Robespierre.

Enter another MESSENGER.


All's lost-the tyrant triumphs. Henriot leads
The soldiers to his aid.- -Already I hear
The rattling cannon destined to surround
This sacred hall.


Why, we will die like men then;
The representatives of France dare death,
When duty steels their bosoms.

[Loud applauses.

TALLIEN (addressing the galleries).

France is insulted in her delegates-
The majesty of the republic is insulted--
Tyrants are up in arms.

An armed force

Threats the Convention. The Convention swears
To die, or save the country!

To principles, not persons, spurn the idol
They worshipp'd once. Yes, Robespierre shall fall
As Capet fell! Oh! never let us deem
That France shall crouch beneath a tyrant's throne.
That the almighty people who have broke
On their oppressors' heads the oppressive chain,
Will court again their fetters! easier were it
To hurl the cloud-capt mountain from its base,
Than force the bonds of slavery upon men
Determined to be free!


Enter LEGENDRE, a pistol in one hand, keys in the


LEGENDRE (flinging down the keys).
So-let the mutinous Jacobins meet now

In the open air.

[Loud applauses

A factious turbulent party
Lording it o'er the state since Danton died,
And with him the Cordeliers.-A hireling band
Of loud-tongued orators controll'd the club,
And bade them bow the knee to Robespierre.
Vivier has 'scaped me. Curse his coward heart-
This fate-fraught tube of Justice in my hand,
I rush'd into the hall. He mark'd mine eye
That beam'd its patriot anger, and flash'd full
With death-denouncing meaning. 'Mid the throng

[Violent applauses from the galleries. He mingled. I pursued-but staid my hand,
Lest haply I might shed the innocent blood.

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Hear ye this, Colleagues?, hear ye this, my brethren
And does no thrill of joy pervade your breasts?

France shall be saved! her generous sons, attached My bosom bounds to rapture. I have seen

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