« AnteriorContinuar »
This longing after immortality ?
[Laying his hand on his sword.
What means this heaviness that hangs upon me?
awaken'd soul may take her flight,
Por. Alas, my father!
it hencé. Cato. Rash youth, forbear! Por. Oh, let the pray’rs, th' intreaties of your
friends, Their tears, their common danger, wrest it from you!
Cato. Wouldst thou betray me? Wouldst thou give
A slave, a captive into Cæsar's hands ?
Por. Look not thus sternly on me ;
Cato. 'Tis well! again I'm master of myself.
And bar each avenue; thy gath'ring fleets
Por. Oh, sir! forgive your son,
[Embracing him Weep not, my son, all will be well again; The righteous gods, whom I have sought to please, Will succour Cato, and preserve his children.
Por. Your words give comfort to my drooping heart.
Cato. Portius, thou may'st rely upon my conduct: Thy father will not act what misbecomes him. But go, my son, and see if aught be wanting Among thy father's friends; see them embark’d, And tell me if the winds and seas befriend them. My soul is quite weigh’d down with care, and asks The soft refreshment of a moment's sleep. Por. My thoughts are more at ease, my heart revives.
So needful to us all and to his country.
Mar. Oh, ye immortal powers ! that guard the just,
easy dreams; remember all his virtues, And shew mankind that goodness is your care.
Mar. Lucia, speak low, he is retir'd to rest.
Luc. Alas! I tremble when I think on Cato !
Mar. Though stern and awful to the foes of Rome, He is all goodness, Lucia, always mild. “ Compassionate and gentle to his friends. “ Fillid with domestic tenderness, the best," The kindest father I have ever found him, Easy and good, and bounteous to my wishes.
Luc. 'Tis his consent alone can make us bless'd, Marcia, we both are equally involv'd
In the same intricate, perplex'd distress.
Mar. And ever shall lament ; unhappy youth!
Luc. Has set my soul at large, and now I stand Loose of my vow.
But who knows Cato's thoughts ; Who knows how yet he may dispose of Portius, Or how he has determin’d of thyself?
Mar. Let him but live, commit the rest to Heav'n.
Enter LUCIUS. Lucius. Sweet are the slumbers of the virtuous man! Oh, Marcia, I have seen thy godlike father! Some power invisible supports his soul, And bears it up in all its wonted greatness. A kind refreshing sleep is fall’n upon him : I saw him stretch'd at ease, his fancy lost In pleasing dreams; as I drew near his couch, He smil'd, and cry’d, Cæsar, thou can'st not hurt me. Mar. His mind still labours with some dreadful
thought. “ Lucius. Lucia, why all this grief, these foods of
sorrow? “ Dry up thy tears, my child, we all are safe “ While Cato lives his presence will protect us."
Enter JUBA. Jub. Lucius, the horsemen are return'd from viewe
ing The number, strength, and posture of our foes,