« AnteriorContinuar »
Dem. But me more good, to see so great a lord Basely insinuate, and send us gifts.
Aar. Had he not reason, lord Demetrius? Did you not use his daughter very friendly?
Dem. I would, we had a thousand Roman dames At such a bay, by turn to serve our lust.
Chi. A charitable wish, and full of love.
Dem. Come, let us go; and pray to all the gods For our beloved mother in her pains. Aar. Pray to the devils; the gods have given us o'er.
[Aside. Flourish. Dem. Why do the emperor's trumpets flourish
thus? Chi. Belike, for joy the emperor hath a son. Dem. Soft; who comes here? Enter a Nurse, with a black-a-moor child in her
Nur. Good-morrow, lords:
Aar. Well, more, or less, or ne'er a whit at all,
Nur. O gentle Aaron, we are all undone ! Now help, or woe betide thee evermore!
Aar. Why, what a caterwauling dost thou keep? What dost thou wrap and fumble in thine arms? Nur. O, that which I would hide from heaven's
eye, Our empress' shame, and stately Rome's disgrace !-She is deliver'd, lords, she is deliver'd.
Aar. To whom?
Aar. Well, God
Nur. A devil.
hue? Sweet blowse, you are a beauteous blossom, sure.
Dem. Villain, what hast thou done?
Aar. Done! that which thou
Chi. Thou hast undone our mother.
Dem. And therein, hellish dog, thou hast undone. Woe to her chance, and damn'd her loathed choice! Accurs'd the offspring of so foul a fiend!
Chi. It shall not live.
Aar. What, must it, nurse? then let no man, but I, Do execution on my flesh and blood.
Dem. I'll broach the tadpole on my rapier's point: Nurse, give it me; my sword shall soon despatch it. Aar. Sooner this sword shall plough thy, bowels up.
[Takes the child from the Nurse, and draws. Stay, murderous villains! will
What, what, ye sanguine shallow-hearted boys!
Dem. Wilt thou betray thy noble mistress thus :
Dem. By this our mother is for ever sham’d.
Aar. Why, there's the privilege your beauty bears : Fy, treacherous hue! that will betray with blushing The close enacts and counsels of the heart! Here's a young lad fram'd of another leer: Look, how the black slave smiles upon the father ; As who should say, Old lad, I am thine own. He is your brother, lords; sensibly fed Of that self-blood that first gave And, from that womb, where you imprison'd were, He is enfranchised and come to light: Nay, he's your brother by the surer side, Although my seal be stamped in his face.
Nur. Aaron, what shall I say unto the empress ?
Dem. Advise thee, Aaron, what is to be done,
Jife to you;
Aar. Then sit we down, and let us all consult. My son and I will have the wind of
you: Keep there: Now talk at pleasure of your safety.
[They sit on the ground. Dem. How many women saw this child of his? Aar. Why, so, brave lords: When we all join in
Nur. Cornelia the midwife, and myself,
Aar. The emperess, the midwife, and yourself : Two may keep counsel, when the third's away: Go to the empress; tell her, this I said :
[Stabbing her. Weke, weke !--so cries a pig prepared to the spit. Dem. What mean'st thou, Aaron? Wherefore didst
thou this? Aar. O lord, sir, 'tis a deed of policy: Shall she live to betray this guilt of ours? A long-tongu'd babbling gossip? no, lords, no. And now be it known to you my full intent. Not far, one Muliteus lives, my countryman, His wife but yesternight was brought to bed ; His child is like to fair as you are : Go pack with him, and give the mother gold, And tell them both the circumstance of all; And how by this their child shall be advanc'd, And be received for the emperor's heir, And substituted in the place of mine, To calm this tempest whirling in the court; And let the emperor dandle him for his own. Hark ye, lords; ye see that I have given her physic,
[Pointing to the Nurse. And you must needs bestow her funeral;
The fields are near, and you are gallant grooms :
Chi. Aaron, I see, thou wilt not trust the air
Dem. For this care of Tamora,
[Exeunt Dem. and Chi, bearing off the Nurse.
you that puts us to our shifts : I'll make
feed on berries, and on roots, And feed on curds and whey, and suck the goat, And cabin in a cave; and bring you up To be a warrior, and command a camp. (Exit.
SCENE III.-The same, A public place, Enter Titus, bearing arrows, with letters at the
ends of them ; with him MARCUS, young Lucius, und other Gentlemen, with bows. Tit. Come, Marcus, come ;-Kinsmen, this is the
way: Sir boy, now let me see your archery; Look ye draw home enough, and 'tis there straight : Terras Astræa reliquit : Be you remember'd, Marcus, she's gone, she's fled. Sirs, take
tools. You, cousins, shall