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BUTLER

ILLO.

ILLO.

BUTLER

Ay!

eye round.

THE PICCOLOMINI, ETC. Both wife and daughter does the Duke call hither!

He crowds in visitants from all sides.

ISOLANI.
ACT I.

Hm!
So much the better! I had framed
SCENE 1.

my mind

To hear of nought but warlike circumstance,
An old Gothic Chamber in the Council House at Pilsen, of marches, and attacks, and batteries :
decorated with Colours and other War Insignia. And lo! the Duke provides, that something too
Illo with BUTLER and ISOLANI.

Of gentler sort, and lovely, should be present
To feast our eyes.

ILLO (who has been standing in the attitude of Ye have come late-but ye are come! The distance,

meditation, to BUTLER, whom he leads a little Count Isolan, excuses your delay.

on one side). ISOLANI.

And how came you to know Add this too, that we come not empty-handed.

That the Count Galas joins us not? At Donauwert' it was reported to us,

BUTLER A Swedish caravan was on its way

Because Transporting a rich cargo of provision,

Ifc importuned me to remain bebind.
Almost six hundred waggons.

'This
my
Croats

ILLO (with warmth).
Plunged down upon and seized, this weighity prize!-- And you l-You hold out firmly?
We bring it hither--

[Grasping his hand with affection.

Noble Butier! Just in time to banquet The illustrious company assembled here.

After the obligation which the Duke

llad laid so newly on me-BUTLER.

ILLO. 'T is all alive! a stirring scene here!

I had forgotten
ISOLANI,

A pleasant duty-Major General,

I wish you joy! The very churches are all full of soldiers.

ISOLANI [Casts his

What, you mean, of his regiment? And in the Council-house too, I observe,

I hear, too, that to make the gift still sweeter, You 're sealed, quite at home! Well, well! we soldiers

The Duke has given him the

very same Must shift and suit us in what way we can.

In which he first saw service, and since then,
ILLO,

Work'd himself, step by step, through each preferment, We have the colonels here of thirty regiments.

From the ranks upwards. And verily, it gives
You'll find Count Tertsky here, and Tiefenbach, A precedent of hope, a spur of action
Kolatto, Goetz, Maradas, Hinnersam,

To the whole corps, if once in their remembrance The Piccolomini, both son and father-

An old deserving soldier makes his way. You 'll meet with many an unexpected greeting

BUTLER. Froin many an old friend and acquaintance. Only

I am perplex'd and doubtful, whether or no Galas is wanting still, and Altringer.

I dare accept this your congratulation.

The Emperor has not yet confirm'd the appointment. Expect not Galas. ILLO (hesitating).

Seize it, friend! Seize it! The hand which in that post How so? Do you know

Placed

you,

is

strong enough to keep you there,
ISOLANI (interrupting him).

Spite of the Emperor and his Ministers ?
Max. Piccolomini here?-0 bring me to him.
I see him yet ('t is now ten years ago,

Ay, if we would but so consider it!

If we would all of us consider it so! We were engaged with Mansfeld hard by Dessau), 'I sce the youth, in my mind's eye I see him,

The Emperor gives us nothing; from the Duke Leap his black war-horse from the bridge adown,

Comes all-whate'er we bope, whate'er we have. And t'ward his father, then in extreme peril,

ISOLANI (to Illo). Beat up against the strong tide of the Elbe.

My noble brother! did I tell you how The down was scarce upon his chin! I hear

The Duke will satisfy my creditors ? He has made good the promise of his youth,

Will be himself my banker for the future, And the full hero now is finishi'd in him.

Make me once more a creditable man!

And this is now the third time, think of that!
ILLO.

This kingly-minded man has rescued me
You'll see him yet ere evening. He conducts

From absolute ruin, and restored my honour.
The Duchess Friedland hither, and the Princess?
From Carnthen. We expect them here at noon.

O that his power but kept pace with his wishes !

Why, friend! he'd give the whole world to his soldiers. "A town about 12 German miles N. E, of Ulm.

The Dukes in Germany being always reigning powers, their . But at Vienna, brother!-here's the grievance!sons and daughters are entitled Princes and Priocesses.

What politic schemes do they not lay to shorten

BUTLER.

ISOLANI.

ILLO.

ILLO.

His arm,

BUTLER.

ILLO.

ILLO.

and where they can, to clip his pinions. You did present yourself upon the part Then these new dainty requisitions! these,

Of the Emperor, lo supplicate our Duke Which this same Questepberg brings hither! That he would straight assume the chief command.

QUESTENBERG.

Ay! To supplicate? Nay, noble General ! These requisitions of the Emperor,

So far extended neither my commission too have beard about them; but I hope

(At least to my own knowledge) nor my zeal. The Duke will not draw back a single inch! ILLO.

Well, well, then-to compel him, if you chuse. Not from liis right most surely, unless first

I can remember me right well, Count Tilly
-From office!

Had suffer'd total rout upon the Lech.
BUTLER (shocked and confused).

Bavaria lay all open to the enemy,
Know you aught then? You alarm me.

Whom there was nothing to delay from pressing ISOLANI (at the same time with BUTLER, and in a hurrying Onwards into the very heart of Austria. voice).

At that time you and Werdenberg appear'd We should be ruin'd, every one of us!

Before our General, storming him with prayers,

And menacing the Emperor's displeasure,

No more! Unless he took compassion on this wretchedness. Yonder I see our worthy friend ' approaching

ISOLANI (steps up to them). With the Lieutenant-General, Piccolomini.

Yes, yes, 't is comprehensible enough,
BUTLER (shaking his head significantly). Wherefore with your commission of to-day
I fear we shall not go hence as we came.

You were not all too willing to remember
Your former one.

QUESTENBERG.
SCENE II.

Why not, Count Isolan?
Enter Octavio PICCOLOMINI and QUESTENBERG. No contradiction sare exists between them.
OCTAVIO (still in the distance).

It was the urgent business of that time Ay, ay! more still! Still more new visitors!

To snatch Bavaria from her enemy's hand; Acknowledge, friend! that never was a camp,

And my commission of to-day instructs me

To free her from her good friends and protectors. Which held at once so many heads of heroes.

ILLO. [-Approaching nearer. Welcome, Count Isolani!

A worthy office! After with our blood

We have wrested this Bohemia from the Saxon,
My noble brother,

To be swept out of it is all our thanks,
Even now am I arrived; it had been else my duty-

The sole reward of all our hard-won victories.

QUESTENBERG. And Colonel Butler-trust me, I rejoice

Unless that wretched land be doomed to suffer Thus to renew acquaintance with a man

Only a change of evils, it must be
Whose worth and services I know and honour.

Freed from the scourge alike of friend and foe.
See, see, my friend!
There might we place at once before our eyes

What? 'T was a favourable year; the boors
The sum of war's whole trade and mystery-

Can answer fresh demands already. [TO QUESTENBERG, presenting Butler and Isolani at the

QUESTENBERG.
same time to him.

Nay,
These two the total sum-Strength and Dispatch. If you discourse of herds and meadow-grounds-

QUESTENBERG (to OCTAVIO).
And lo! betwixt them both experienced Prudence! The war maintains the war. Are the boors ruin'd,
OCTAVIO (presenting QUESTENBERG to Butler and The Emperor gains so many more new soldiers.
ISOLANI).

QUESTENBERG.
The Chamberlain and War-commissioner Questenberg,
The bearer of the Emperor's behests,

And is the poorer hy even so many subjects.
The long-tried friend and patron of all soldiers,
We horour in this noble visitor. (Universal silence. Poh! We are all his subjects.
ILLO (moving towards QUESTENBERG).

QUESTENBERG. 'T is not the first time, noble Minister,

Yet with a difference, General! The one fill
You have shown our camp this honour.

With profitable industry the purse,
QUESTENBERG.
The others are well skilld to empty

it. Once before The sword has made the Emperor poor; the plough I stood before these colours.

Must reinvigorate his resources.

ISOLANI. Perchance too you remember where that was.

Sure! It was at Znäimin Moravia, where

Times are not yet so bad. Methinks I see

[ Examining with his eye the dress and ornaments Spoken with a sneer. * A town not far from the Mine-mountains, on the high road

of QUESTENBERG from Vienna to Prague.

Good store of gold that still remains uncoin'd.

ISOLANI

OCTAVIO.

ILLO.

ISOLANI

ISOLANI.

ILLO.

BUTLER.

QUESTENBERG.

QUESTENBERG,
Thank Heaven! that means have been found out to hide His cares and feelings all ranks share alike,
Some little from the fingers of the Croats.

Nor will he offer one up to another.
ILLO.

ISOLANI.
There! The Stawata and the Martinitz,

And therefore thrusts he us into the deserts On whom the Emperor heaps bis gifts and graces, As beasts of prey, that so he may prescrve To the heart-burning of all good Bohemians

His dear sheep fattening in his fields at home. Those minions of court favour, those court harpics,

QUESTENBERG (with a sneer). Who fatten on the wrecks of citizens

Count! this comparison you make, not I. Driven from their house and home-who reap no

BUTLER harvests

Why, were we all the Court supposes us, Save in the general calamity

'T were dangerous, sure, to give us liberty. Who now, with kingly pomp, insult and mock

QUESTENBERG. The desolation of their country--these,

You have taken liberty-it was not given you. Let these, and such as these, support the war,

And therefore it becomes an urgent duty The fatal war, which they alone enkindled!

To rein it in with curbs.

OCTAVIO (interposing and addressing QUESTENBERG). And those state-parasites, who have their feet

My noble friend, So constantly beneath the Emperor's table,

This is no more than a remembrancing Who cannot let a benefice fall, but they

That you are now in camp, and among warriors. Snap at it with dog's liunger-they, forsooth,

The soldier's boldness constitutes bis freedom.
Would pare the soldier's bread, and cross his reckon- Could he act daringly, unless he dared
ing!

Talk even so ? One runs into the other.
ISOLANI.

The boldness of this worthy officer,
My life long will it anger me to think,

[Pointing to BUTLER. How when I went to court seven years ago,

Which now has but mistaken in its mark, To see about new horses for our regiment,

Preserved, when pought but boldness could preserve it, How from one antechamber to another

To the Emperor his capital city, Prague, They drage'd me on, and left me by the hour

In a most formidable mutiny To kick my heels among a crowd of simpering

Of the whole garrison. [Military music at a distance. Feast-fatten's slaves, as if I had come thither

Hah! here they come!
A mendicant suitor for the crumbs of favour
That fall beneath their tables. And, at last,

The sentrics are saluting them: this signal
Whom should they send me but a Capuchin!

Announces the arrival of the Duchess. Straight I began to muster up my sins

OCTAVIO (to QUESTENBERG). For absolution- but do such luck for me!

Then

my son Max. too has relurned. 'T was he This was the man, this capuchin, with whom

Fetch'd and attended them from Carnthen hither. I was to treat concerning the army horses:

ISOLANI (to Illo).
And I was forced at last to quit the field,

Shall we not go in company to greet them?
The business unaccomplish'd. Afterwards
The Duke procured me in three days, what I

Well, let us go.--Ho! Colonel Butler, come.
Could not obtain in thirty at Vienna.

(To Octavio. QUESTENBERG.

You 'll not forget, that yet ere noon we meet
Yes, yes! your travelling bills soon found their way to us: The nuble Envoy at the General's palace.
Too well I know we have still accounts to settle.

(Exeunt all but QUESTENBERG and Octavio.

ILLO.

ILLO.

ILLO.

SCENE III.

QUESTENBERG and OCTAVIO.
QUESTENBERG (with signs of aversion and astonishment).
What have I not been forced to hear, Octavio!
What sentiments! what fierce, uncurb'd defiance!
And were this spirit universal -

OCTAVIO.

War is a violent trade; one cannot always
Finish one's work by soft means; every trifle
Must not be blacken'd into sacrilege.
If we should wait till you, in solemn council,
With due deliberation had selected
The smallest out of four-and-twenty evils,
I' faith we should wait long:-
« Dash! and through with it!»—That's the better watch-

word.
Then after come what

"Tis man's nature
To make the best of a bad thing once past.
A bitter and perplex'd « what shall I do?.
Is worse lo man than worst necessity.

QUESTENBERG.
Ay, doubtless, it is truc: the Duke does spare us
The troublesome task of chusing.

BUTLER.

Yes, the Duke
Cares with a father's feelings for his troops;
But how the Emperor feels for us, we see.

may come.

[blocks in formation]

OCTAVIO.

OCTAVIO.

OCTAVIO.

I know a spell that will soon dispossess

Their little army faithful to its duty, The evil spirit in him.

And daily it becomes more numerous. QUESTENBERG (walking up and down in evident disquiet). Nor can he take us by surprise : you know Friend, friend!

I hold bim all encompass'd by my listeners. 0! this is worse, far worse, than we had suffer'd Whate'er he does, is mine, even while 't is doingOurselves to dream of at Vienna. There

No step so small, but instantly I hear it; We saw it only with a courtier's eyes,

Yea, his own mouth discloses it. Eyes dazzled by the splendour of the throne.

QUESTENBERG. We had not seen the War-chief, the Commander,

'T is quite
The man all-powerful in his camp. Here, here, Incomprehensible, that he detects not
'T is quite another thing.

The foe so ncar!
Here is no Emperor more-the Duke is Emperor.
Alas, my friend! alas, my noble friend!

Reware, you do not think,
This walk which you have ta'en me through the camp

That I by lying arts, and complaisant
Strikes my hopes prostrate.

Hypocrisy, have skulked into his graces :
OCTAVIO.

Or with the substance of smooth professions
Now you see yourself

Nourish his all-confiding friendship! No-
Of what a perilous kind the office is,

Compellid alike by prudence, and that duty Which you deliver to me from the Court.

Which we all owè our country, and our sovereign, The least suspicion of the General

To hide my genuine feelings from him, yet Costs me my freedom and my life, and would

Ne'er have I duped him with base counterfeits ! But hasten his most desperate enterprise.

QUESTENBERG.
QUESTENBERG.

It is the visible ordinance of Heaven.
Where was our reason sleeping when we trusted
This madman with the sword, and placed such power

I know not what it is that so attracts
In such a hand ? I tell you, he'll refuse,

And links him both to me and to my son. Flatly refuse, to obey the Imperial orders.

Comrades and friends we always were

- long habit, Friend, he can do 't, and what he can, he will. Adventurous deeds performed in company. And then the impunity of liis defiance

And all those many and various incidents Oh! what a proclamation of our weakness !

Which store a soldier's memory with affections,

Had bound us long and early to each otherD' ye think too, he has brought his wife and daughter Yet I can name the day, when all at once Without a purpose hither? Here in cainp!

Ilis heart rose on me, and his confidence And at the very point of time, in which

Shot out in sudden growth. It was the morning We're arming for the war? That he has taken

Before the meinorable fight at Lutzner. These, the last pledges of his loyalty,

Urged by an ugly dream. I sought liim out, Away from out the Emperor's domains

To press him to accept another charger. This is no doubtful token of the nearness

At distance from the tents, beneath a tree, Of some eruption!

I found him in a sleep. When I had waked him, QUESTENBERG.

And had related all my bodings to him, How shall we hold footing Long time be stared upon me, like a man Beneath this tempest, which collects itself

Astounded; thereon fell upon my neck, And threats us from all quarters? The enemy

And manifested to me an emotion Of the empire on our borders, now already

That far outstripp'd the worth of that small service. The master of the Danube, and still farther,

Since then his confidence has follow'd me And farther still, extending every hour!

With the same pace that mine has fled from him. In our interior the alarum-bells

QUESTENBERG.
Of insurrection-peasantry in arms-

You lead your son into the secret?
All orders discontented—and the army,
Just in the moment of our expectation

No!
Of aidance from it-lo! this very army

QUESTENBERG. Seduced, run wild, lost to all discipline,

What! and not warn him either what bad hands Loosen'd, and rent asuvder from the state

His lot has placed him in?
And from their sovereign, the blind instrument
Of the most daring of mankind, a weapon
Of fearful which at his will he wields !

I must perforce
power,

Leave him in wardship to his innocence.

His Nay, nay, friend! let us not despair too soon.

young and open soul-dissiovulation Men's words are ever bolder than their deeds:

Is foreign to its habits! ignorance And many a resolute, who now appears

Alone can keep alive the cheerful air, Made up to all extremes, will, on a sudden

The unembarrass'd sense and light free spirit, Find in his breast a heart he wot pot of,

That make the Duke secure. Let but a single honest man speak out

QUESTENBERG (anxiously). The true name of his crime! Remember too,

My honour'd friend! most highly do I deem We stand not yet so wholly unprotected.

of Colonel Piccolomini-yet-ifCounts Altringer and Galas have maintain'd

Reflect a little

OCTAVIO.

OCTAVIO.

OCTAVIO.

MAX .

envoy of

OCTAVIO.

The way

OCTAVIO.

OCTAVIO (to QUESTENBERG).
I must venture it.

Hush! Suppress it friend! Hush !-- There he comes !

Unless some end were answer'd by the utterance.

Of him there you 'll make nothing.
SCENE IV.

MAX. (continuing).

In their distress Max. PICCOLOMINI, Octavio PICCOLOMINI, They call a spirit up, and when he comes, QUESTENBERG.

Straight their flesh creeps and quivers, and they dread

him Ha! there he is himself. Welcome, my father!

More than the ills for which they call'd him up. [He embraces his father. As he turns round, Like things of every day.—But in the field,

The uncommon, the sublime, must seem and be
he observes QUESTENBERG, and draws back
with a cold and reserved air.

Aye, there the Present being makes itself felt,
You are engaged, I sec. I'll not disturb you.

The personal must command, the actual cye

Examine. If to be the chieftain asks:
OCTAVIO.
How, Max.? Look closer at this visitor.

All that is great in nature, let it be

Likewise his privilege to move and act
Attention, Max, an old friend merils-Reverence
Belongs of right to the

In all the correspondencies of greatness.
your sovereign.

The oracle within him, that which lives,
MAX. (drily).

He must invoke and question—not dead books,
Von Questenberg!-Welcome-if you bring with you Not ordinances, not mould-rotted papers.
Aught good to our head-quarters.
QUESTENBERG (seizing his hand).
Nay, draw not

My son! of those old narrow ordinances
Your band away, Count Piccolomini!

Let us not hold too lightly. They are weights Not on mine own account alone I seized it,

Of priceless valuc, which oppress'd mankind

Tied to the volatile will of their oppressors. And nothing common will I say therewith. [Taking the hands of both.

For always formidable was the league Octavio-Max, Piccolomini!

And partnership of free power

with free will. O saviour names, and full of happy omen!

of ancient ordinance, though it winds, Nc'er will her prosperous genius turn from Austria,

is yet no devious way. Straight forward gous While two such stars, with blessed influences

The lightning's path, and straight the fearful path Beaming protection, shine above her hosts.

Of the cannoo-hall. Direct it flies and rapid, Shattering that it may reach, and shattering what it

reaches. Heh!-Noble minister! You miss your part. You came not here to act a panegyric.

My son! the road, the human being travels, You're sent, I know, to find fault and to scold us

That, on which BLESSING comes and goes, doth follow

The river's course, the valley's playful windings,
I must not be beforehand with my comrades.

Curves round the corn-field and the hill of vines,
OCTAVIO (t0 Max.).
He comes from court, where people are not quite

Honouring the holy bounds of property!
So well contented with the Duke, as here.

And thus secure, thougla late, leads to its end.

QUESTENBERG.
What now have they contrived to find out in bim? O hear your father, noble youth! hear him,

Who is at once the hero and the man.
That he alone determines for himself
What he himself alone doth understand!
Well, therein he does right, and will persist in 't. My son, the nursling of the camp spoke in thee!
Ileaven never meant him for that passive thing

A war of fifteen years
That can be struck and hammer'd out to suit

Hath been thy education and thy school. Another's taste and fancy. He 'll not dance

Peace hast thou never witness'd! There exists To every tune of every minister :

An higher than the warrior's excellence. It goes against his nature-he can't do it.

In war itself war is no ultimate purpose. He is possess'd by a commanding spirit,

The vast and sudden deeds of violence, And his too is the station of command.

Adventures wild, and wonders of the moment, And well for us it is so! There exist

These are not they, my son, that generale Few fit to rule themselves, but few that use

The Calm, the Blissful, and the enduring Mighty! Their intellects intelligently.-- Then

Lo there! the soldier, rapid architect! Well for the whole, if there be found a man,

Builds his light town of canvas, and at once Who makes himself what nature destined him,

The whole scene moves and bustles momently, The pause, the central point to thousand thousands With arms, and neighing steeds, and mirth and quarrel Stands fixed and stately, like a firm-built column, The motley market fills; the roads, the streams Where all may press with joy and confidence.

Are crowded with new freights, trade stirs and hurries! Now such a man is Wallenstein; and if

But on some morrow morn, all suddenly, Another better suits the court--no other

The tents drop down, the horde renews its march.
But such a ove as he can serve the army.

Dreary, and solitary as a church-yard
QUESTENBERG.

The meadow and down-trodden seed-plot lie,
The army? Doubtless!

And the year's harvest is gone utterly.

MAX.

MAX.

OCTAVIO.

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