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But let desert in pure election shine ;
And, Romans, fight for freedom in

your

choice.

Enter Marcus Andronicus aloft, with the crown.

Mar. Princes that strive by factions, and by friends, Ambitiously for rule and empery, Know, that the people of Rome, for whom we stand A special party, have, by common voice, In election for the Roman empery, Chosen Andronicus, surnamed Pius, For many good and great deserts to Rome; A nobler man, a braver warrior, Lives not this day within the city walls. He by the senate is accited ? home, From weary wars against the barbarous Goths ; That, with his sons, a terror to our foes, Hath yoked a nation strong, trained up in arms. Ten years are spent, since first he undertook This cause of Rome, and chastised with arms Our enemies' pride. Five times he hath returned Bleeding to Rome, bearing his valiant sons In coffins from the field; And now at last, laden with honor's spoils, Returns the good Andronicus to Rome, Renowned Titus, flourishing in arms. Let us entreat, -by honor of his name, Whom, worthily, you would have now succeed, And in the Capitol and senate's right, Whom you pretend to honor and adore, — That you withdraw you, and abate your strength; Dismiss

your followers, and, as suitors should, Plead your deserts in peace and humbleness. Sat. How fair the tribune speaks to calm my

thoughts!
Bas. Marcus Andronicus, so I do affy
In thy uprightness and integrity,
And so I love and honor thee and thine,
Thy nobler brother Titus, and his sons,

1 Summoned.

And her to whom my thoughts are humbled all,
Gracious Lavinia, Rome's rich ornament,
That I will here dismiss my loving friends;
And to my fortunes, and the people's favor,
Commit my cause in balance to be weighed.

[Exeunt the followers of BASSIANUS. Sat. Friends, that have been thus forward in my

right,
I thank you all, and here dismiss you all ;
And to the love and favor of my country
Commit myself, my person, and the cause.

[Exeunt the followers of SATURNINUS. Rome, be as just and gracious unto me, As I am confident and kind to thee.Open the gates, and let me in. Bas. Tribunes! and me, a poor competitor. [Sat, and Bas. go into the Capitol, and exeunt

with Senators, MARCUS, &c.

SCENE II. The same.

Enter a Captain and others. Cap. Romans, make way; the good Andronicus, Patron of virtue, Rome's best champion, Successful in the battles that he fights, With honor and with fortune is returned, From where he circumscribed with his sword, And brought to yoke the enemies of Rome.

Flourish of trumpets, &-c. Enter Mutius and Mar

tius ; after them two men bearing a coffin covered with black; then QUINTUS and Lucius. After them, Titus ANDRONICUS ; and then Tamora, with ALARBUS, CHIRON, DEMETRIUS, Aaron, and other Goths, prisoners ; Soldiers and People following. The bearers set down the coffin, and Titus speaks.

Tit. Hail, Rome, victorious in thy mourning weeds! Lo, as the bark that hath discharged her fraught,

Returns with precious lading to the bay,
From whence at first she weighed her anchorage,
Cometh Andronicus, bound with laurel boughs,
To re-salute his country with his tears;
Tears of true joy for his return to Rome.-
Thou great defender of this Capitol,
Stand gracious to the rights that we intend !-
Romans, of five-and-twenty valiant sons,
Half of the number that king Priam had,
Behold the poor remains alive, and dead !
These, that survive, let Rome reward with love;
These that I bring unto their latest home,
With burial amongst their ancestors.
Here Goths have given me leave to sheathe my sword.
Titus, unkind, and careless of thine own,
Why suffer’st thou thy sons, unburied yet,
To hover on the dreadful shore of Styx ?-
Make way to lay them by their brethren.

[The tomb is opened.
There greet in silence, as the dead are wont,
And sleep in peace, slain in your country's wars !
O sacred receptacle of my joys,
Sweet cell of virtue and nobility,
How many sons of mine hast thou in store,
That thou wilt never render to me more !

Luc. Give us the proudest prisoner of the Goths, That we may hew his limbs, and, on a pile, Ad manes fratrum sacrifice his flesh, Before this earthly ’ prison of their bones; That so the shadows be not unappeased, Nor we disturbed with prodigies on earth.

Tit. I give him you; the noblest that survives, The eldest son of this distressed queen.

Tam. Stay, Roman brethren.—Gracious conqueror, Victorious Titus, rue the tears I shed, A mother's tears in passion for her son ; And, if thy sons were ever dear to thee,

1 Jupiter, to whom the Capitol was sacred. 2 Earthy. Ed. 1600. 3 i. e. in grief.

O, think my son to be as dear to me.
Sufficeth not, that we are brought to Rome,
To beautify thy triumphs, and return,
Captive to thee, and to thy Roman yoke;
But must my sons be slaughtered in the streets,
For valiant doings in their country's cause?
O! if to fight for king and commonweal
Were piety in thine, it is in these.
Andronicus, stain not thy tomb with blood.
Wilt thou draw near the nature of the gods ?
Draw near them then in being merciful:
Sweet mercy is nobility's true badge.
Thrice-noble Titus, spare my first-born son.

Tit. Patient' yourself, madam, and pardon me.
These are their brethren, whom you Goths beheld
Alive, and dead; and for their brethren slain,
Religiously they ask a sacrifice.
To this your son is marked ; and die he must,
To appease their groaning shadows that are gone.

Luc. Away with him! and make a fire straight;
And with our swords, upon a pile of wood,
Let's hew his limbs, till they be clean consumed.

[Exeunt LuciuS, QUINTUS, Martius, and

Mutius, with ALARBUS.
Tam. O cruel, irreligious piety!
Chi. Was ever Scythia half so barbarous ?

Dem. Oppose not Scythia to ambitious Rome.
Alarbus goes to rest; and we survive
To tremble under Titus’ threatening look.
Then, madam, stand resolved; but hope withal,
The self-same gods, that armed the queen of Troy
With opportunity of sharp revenge
Upon the Thracian tyrant in his tent,
May favor Tamora, the queen of Goths,
(When Goths were Goths, and Tamora was queen,)
To quit the bloody wrongs upon her foes.

2

i This verb is used by other old dramatic writers.

2 Theobald says that we should read, “ in her tent;” i. e. in the tent where she and the other Trojan women were kept; for thither Hecuba, by a wile, had decoyed Polymnestor, in order to perpetrate her revenge. VOL. VI.

44

Re-enter LuciuS, QUINTUS, Martius, and Mutius,

with their swords bloody. Luc. See, lord and father, how we have performed Our Roman rites. Alarbus' limbs are lopped, And entrails feed the sacrificing fire, Whose smoke, like incense, doth perfume the sky. Remaineth nought, but to inter our brethren, And with loud Plarums welcome them to Rome.

Tit. Let it be so; and let Andronicus Make this his latest farewell to their souls. [Trumpets sounded, and the coffins laid in

the tomb. In peace and honor, rest you here, my sons; Rome's readiest champions, repose you here in rest, Secure from worldly chances and mishaps ! Here lurks no treason, here no envy swells, Here grow no damned grudges; here are no storms, No noise, but silence and eternal sleep.

Enter LAVINIA.
In peace and honor rest you here, my sons !

Lav. In peace and honor live lord Titus long;
My noble lord and father, live in fame!
Lo! at this tomb my tributary tears
I render, for my brethren's obsequies ;
And at thy feet I kneel with tears of joy
Shed on the earth, for thy return to Rome.
0, bless me here with thy victorious hand,
Whose fortunes Rome's best citizens applaud.

Tit. Kind Rome, that hast thus lovingly reserved
The cordial of mine age to glad my heart !
Lavinia, live; outlive thy father's days,
And fame's eternal date, for virtue's praise !!

1 To "outlive an eternal date ” is, though not philosophical, yet poetical sense. He wishes that her life may be longer than his, and her praise longer than fame.

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