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To roam there in my childhood oft alone,
And I would seek her! for she is not dead ! And mutter to myself the name of father.
She can not die! O pardon, gracious lady;
You were about to say, that he return'da
Deep Love, the godlike in us, still believes'
Its objects as immortal as itself!
And found her still
Alas! he did return :
He left no spot unsearch'd in all the forest, Hath his Jair there, and fear hath framed the rest. But she (I trust me by some friendly hand)
(Then speaking again to Bethlen. Had been borne off.
Dearest Bethlen! In the hollow of an old oak, as in a nest,
I would that you could weep like me! O do not Did find thee, Bethlen, then a helpless babe:
Gaze so upon the air! The robe, that wrapt thee, was a widow's mantle.
SAROLTA (continuing the story).
Wbile he was absent, An infant's weakness doth relax my framc.
A friendly troop, 't is certain, scour'd the wood,
Hotly pursued indced by Emerick.
GLYCINE (to silence him). [Striking his breast.
Hist! I'll curse him in a whisper! Scarce by both palms supported from the earth,
This gracious lady must hear blessings only. A wounded lady lay, whose life fast waning
She hath not yet the glory round her head, Seemd to survive itself in her fixt
Nor those strong eagle wings, which made swift way
eyes, That strain's towards the babe. At length one arm
To that appointed place, which I must seek :
Or else she were my mother!
From me fear nothing! Long time have I owed
Long pass'd that weigh me down, though innocent! That at my life's risk I will save thy child!
Thy foster-father hid the secret from thee, Her countenance work'd, as one that seem'd preparing
For he perceived thy thoughts as they expanded, A loud voice, but it died
Proud, restless, and ill-sorting with thy state! upon In a faint whisper, • Fly! Save him! Hide-hide all!,
Vain was his care! Thou 'st made thyself suspected
E'en where Suspicion reigns, and asks no proof And did he leave her? What! had I a mother?
But its own fears! Great Nature hath endow'd thee And left her bleeding, dying? Bought I vile life.
With her best gifts! From me thou shalt receive With the desertion of a dying mother?
All honourable aidance! Dut haste hence! Oh agony!
Travel will ripen thee, and enterprise
Beseems thy years! Be thou henceforth my soldier! Alas! thou art bewilder'd,
And whatsoe'er betide thee, still believe
That in each noble deed, achieved or suffer'd,
| Thou solvest best the riddle of thy birth! What else can I remember, but a mother
And may the light that streams from thine own honour Mangled and left to perish ?
Guide thee to that thou seekest!
Must he leave us ?
And for such goodness can I return nothing, And it will find a mirror in the waters,
But some hot tears that sting mine eyes ? Some sighs It now makes boil above it. Check him not!
That if not breathed would swell my heart to stifling? BETILEN.
May Heaven and thine own virtues, high-born lady, O that I were diffused among the waters
Be as a shield of fire, far, far aloof That pierce into the secret depths of earth,
To scare all evil from thee! Yet, if fate And find their way in darkness! Would that I
Hath destined thee one doubtful hour of danger, Could spread myself upon the homeless winds ! From tlic uttermost region of the earth, methinks,
And you are
Swift as a spirit invoked, I should be with thee!
Enter EMERICK, Lord RUDOLPH, Laska and Hunts. And then, perchance, I might have power to unbosom
men and Attendants. These thanks that struggle here. Eyes fair as thine Ilave gazed on me with tears of love and anguish, Which these eyes saw not, or beheld unconscious; I gallant chace, Sire. And tones of anxious fondness, passionate prayers, llave been talk'd to me! But this tongue ne'er soothed
Ave, but this new quarry A mother's ear, lisping a mother's name!
That we last started seems worth all the rest.
[Then 10 LASKA.
Nay, that's too late, man.
Laska, my liege Sovereign. [Exit Bethlen.
Well, my liege subject Laska!
Lord Casimir's steward?
your majesty's creature. Where the babe lay, the mantle, and some jewel Bound on his infant arm.
Two gentle dames made off at our approach.
Which was your lady?
My liege lord, the taller.
The other, please your grace,
poor handmaid, And voices have been heard! And there the plant grows long since betrothed to me. But the maid's froward – That being eaten gives the inhuman wizard
Yet would your grace but speakPower to put on the fell hyæna's shape.
Hum, master steward! What idle tongue hath witch'd thee, Glycine?
I am honoured with this sudden confidence. I hoped that thou hadst learnt a nobler faith.
[To Laska, then to Rudolph.
Lord Rudolph, you 'll announce our coming. Ochide me not, dear lady! question Laska,
Greet fair Sarolta from me, and entreai her
To be our gentle hostess. Mark, you add
How much we grieve, that business of the state
LORD RUDOLPH (aside).
Now onward all.
(Exeunt attendants. Three days past
EMERICK (solus). A courier from the king did cross that wood;
A fair one, by my faith! A wilful man, that arm'd himself on purpose:
If her face rival but her gait and stature,
My good friend Casimir had his reasons too.
Made early in the convent—llis word pledged—-
All fictions, all! fictions of jealousy.
Well! if the mountain move not to the prophet, 'T is the sound of horns! The prophet must to the mountain! In this Laska Our huntsmen are not out!
There's somewhat of the knave mix'd up with dolt.
Through the transparence of the fool, methought,
I saw (as I could lay my finger on it)
[Horns again. The crocodile's eye, that peer'd up from the bottom.
Won me the husband. Now let vanity
And the resentment for a forced seclusion
Haste we hence! Decoy the wife! Let him be deem'd the aggressor For I believe in part thy tale of terror!
Whose cunning and distrust began the game! But, trust me, 't is the inner man transformd :
(Exit. Beasts in the shape of men are worse than war-wolves.
(Sarolta and GLYCINE exeunt. Trumpets etc. louder.
And think thou see'st thy sainted lord commission'd ACT II.
And on his way to aid us! Wience those late dreams, SCENE I.
Which after such long interval of bopeless
And silent resignation, all at once savage wood. At one side a cavern, overhung with ivy. ZAPOLYA and Raab Kiuprili discovered both, Night after night commanded thy return
Hither? and still prese pted in clear vision but especially the latter, in rude and savage gar- This wood as in a scene? this very cavern? ments.
Thou darest not doubt that Heaven's especial hand RAAB KIUPRILI.
Work'd in those signs. The hour of thy deliverance Heard you then aught while I was slumbering? Is on the stroke:—for Misery can not add
Grief to thy griefs, or Patience to thy sufferance!
Life's grief is at its height indeed; the hard O for a sleep, for sleep itself to rest in!
Necessity of this inhuman state I dreamt I had met with food beneath a tree,
Has made our deeds in human as our vestments. And I was seeking you, when all at once
Housed in this wild wood, with wild usages, My feet became entangled in a net:
Danger our guest, and famine at our portalStill more entangled as in rage I tore it.
Wolf-like to prowl in the shepherd's fold by night! At length I freed myself, had sight of you,
At once for food and safety to affrighten But as I hasten'd cagerly, again
The traveller from his roadI found my frame encumber'd : a huge serpent
[GLYCINE is heard singing without. Twined round my chest, but tightest round my throat.
not Alas!' was lack of food : for hunger chokes !
A distant chaunt!
SONG, BY GLYCINE.
A sunny shaft did I behold,
From sky to earth it slanted : Did secm to shoot yourself along the air,
And poised therein a bird so bold -
Sweet bird, thou wert enchanted!
He sunk, he rose, he twinkled, he trolld
His eyes of fire, his beak of gold,
All else of amethyst!
And thus he sang: « Adieu! adicu!
Love's dreams prove seldom true.
The sparkling dew-drops will not stay.
Sweet month of May, Is it Death's lengthening shadow, who comes onward,
We must away; Life's setting sun behind him?
Far, far away!
ZAPOLYA. Trust me I'll bring thee food!
Sure 't is some blest spirit!
For since thou slewest the usurper's emissary
That plunged upon us, a more than mortal fear
Is as a wall, that wards off the beleaguerer O'er my own sorrows as my rightful subjects.
And starves the poor besieged.
[Song again. But wherefore, 0 revered Kiuprili! wherefore Did my importunate prayers, my liopes and fancies, It is a maiden's voice! quick to the cave! Force thee from thy secure though sad retreat?
ZAPOLYA. Would that my tongue had then cloven to my mouth! Ilark! her voice faulters!
[Exit ZAPOLYAS But Heaven is just! With tears I conquer'd thee, And not a tear is left me to repent with!
She must not enter Hadst thou not done already—hadst thou not
The cavern, else I will remain unseen! Suffer'd-oh, more than e'er man feign'd of friendship? [RIUPRILI retires to one side of the stage. GLYCINE
enters singing. Yet be thou comforted! What! hadst thou faith
GLYCINE (fearfully.) When I turnd back incredulous? 'T was thy light A savage place! saints shield me! Bethlen! Bethlen! That kindled minë. And shall it now go out,
Not here!- There's no one here! I'll sing again. And leave thy soul in darkness? Yet look up,
Ha! my ser!
If I do not hear my own voice, I shall fancy
By prayers, and with the shedding of his blood, Voices in all chance sounds!
[Starts. To make disclosure of his parentage.
'T was some dry branch But most of all Dropt of itself! Oh, he went forth so raslıly,
ZAPOLYA (rushing out from the cavern). Took no food with him-only his arms and boar-spear!
Heaven's blessing on thee! Speak! What if I leave these cakes, this cruse of wine,
Angel of Mercy, I was perishing
And thou didst bring me food: and now thou bring'st
The sweet, sweet food of hope and consolation
To a mother's famislı'd heart! His name, sweet maiden!
"T is Glycine! Bethlen Bathory! Speak to me, Bethlen! speak in your own voice!
ZAPOCYA. All silent!-If this were the war-wolfs den!
Even till this morning ? 'T was not his voice!
This morning? when my weak faith fail'd me wholly! (GLYCINE leaves the provisions and exit fearfully. Pardon, O thou that portion'st out our sufferance,
KIUPRILI comes forward, seizes them and car- And fill'st again the widow's empty cruse !
The false ones charged the valiant youth Shame! Nothing hurt me! With treasonous words of EmerickIf some fierce beast have gored him, he must needs
RAAB KIUPRILI (aside).
ZAPOLYA and RAAB KIUPRILI, [ As she approaches to enter the cavern, KIUPRILI
Frown'd and discharged these bad men.
RAAB KIUPRILI (turning off and to himself). GLYCINE
Righteous heaven Save me!
Sent me a daughter once, and I repined,
That it was not a son. A son was given me.
My daughter died, and I scarce shed a tear:
And lo! that son became my curse and infamy.
ZAPOLYA (embraces GLYCINE).
Sweet innocent! and you came here to seek him, Tell what thou art, and what thou seekest?
And bring hiin food. Alas! thou fear'st?
Not much! A harmless orphan youth, to bring him food
My own dear lady, when I was a child
Embraced me oft, but her heart never beat so.
i'or I too am an orphan, motherless !
RAAB KIUPSILI (to ZAPOLYA).
O yet beware, lest hope's brief Alash but deepen With what intention came he? Wouldst thou save him, The after gloom, and make the darkness stormy! Hide nothing!
In that last conflict, following our cscape,
The usurper's cruelty had clogu'd our flight
This maid herself is one of numberless
Planks from the same vast wreck.
[Then to GLYCINE again.
Well! Casimir's wife-
She is always gracious, and so praised the old man
That his heart o'erflowed, and made discovery If that thou wert a spirit, to compel thee
That in this wood
RAAB KIU PRILI.
ZA POLYA (in agitation).
Oh, fool! mine eyes are duped by my own shuddering:O speak!
Those piled thoughts, built up in solitude,
Year following year, that press'd upon my heart A wounded lady- As on the altar of some unknown God, [ZAPOLYA faints—they both support her. Then, as if touch'd by fire from heaven descending,
Blazed up within me at a father's nameIs this his mother?
Do they desert me now!-at my last trial?
Voice of command! and thou, 0 hidden Light!
I have obey'd! Declare ye by what name
Will make you gracious.
RAAB KIUPRILI (still unseen),
Patience! Truth! Obedience! Quick! quick!
Be thy whole soul transparent! so the Light
Thou seekest may enshrine itself within thee!
Ask rather the poor roaming savage,
Whose infancy no boly rite had blest.
To him, perchance rude spoil or ghastly trophy, [They retire to the cavern, bearing ZAPOLYA. Then In chase or battle won, have given a name. enter Bgtalen armed with a boar-spear. I have none-but like a dog have answer'd BETHLEN.
To the chance sound which he that fed me call'd ine.
BAAB KIUPRILI (still unseen).
Deluding spirits, Do ye mock me?
The mother-falcon hath her nest above it,
[Looking at his signet. And in it the wolf litters!--l invoke you, Stands here inscribed : it is the seal of fate!
Tell me, ye secret ones! if ye beheld me Ha!-(Observing the cave). Had ever monster fitting As I stood there, like one who having delved lair, 't is yonder !
For hidden gold hath found a talisman,
O tell! what rights, what offices of duty
Owe homage to its Lord ?
RAAB KIUPRILI (still unseen). (Blows the horn-then a pause.
More, guiltier, mightier, Another blast! and with another swell
Than thou mayest summon! Wait the destined hour! To you, ye charmed watchers of this wood! If haply I have come, the rightful heir
O yet again, and with more clamorous prayer, Of vengeance : if in me survive the spirits
I importune ye! Mock me no more with shadows! Of those, whose guiltless blood flowed streaming here! This sable mantle-tell, dread voice! did this
[Blows again louder. Enwrap one fatherless ? Still silent? Is the monster gorged ? Ileaven shield me!
ZA POLYA (unseen). Thou, faithful spear! be both my torch and guide.
One fatherless! [As Bethlen is about to enter, Kiuprili speaks from
BETALEN (starting). the cavern unseen.
A sweeter voice!-A voice of love and pity!
Was it the soften'd echo of mine own Withdraw thy foot! Retract thine idle spear,
Sad echo! but the hope it kill'd was sickly,
And ere it died it had been mourn'd as dead !
One other hope yet lives within my soul:
This stop of the heart, leaves utterance !- Are-ar Avengers !
The sole remains of her that gave me life?
Have I a mother?
[ZAPOLYA rushes out to embrace him. Betilen starts. RAAB KIUPRILI (skill unseen).
ZAPOLYA (embracing him).
My son! my son! Thenceforth must darkling flow, and sink in darkness! A wretched —Oh no, no! a blest—a happy mother!
[They embrace. KLUPkili and GLYCINE come forward, Ha! see my boar-spear trembles like a reed !
and the curtain drops.