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To himself and father's house eternal fame,
And which is best and happiest yet, all this
With God not parted from him, as was fearM,
But favouring and assisting to the end. 1720
Nothing is here for tears, nothing to wail
Or knock the breast, no weakness, no contempt,
Dispraise, or blame, nothing but well and fair
And what may quiet us in a death so noble.
Let us go find the body where it lies
Sok'd in his enemies' blood, and from the stream
With lavers pure and cleansing herbs wash off
The clotted gore. I with what speed the while
(Gaza is not in plight to say us nay)
Will send for all my kindred, all my friends 1730
To fetch him hence, and solemnly attend
With silent obsequy and funeral train
Home to his father's house: there will I build him
A monument, and plant it round with shade
Of laurel ever green, and branching palm,
With all his trophies hung, and acts inroll'd
In copious legend, or sweet lyric song.
Thither shall all the valiant youth resort,
And from his memory inflame their breasts
To matchless valour, and adventures high: 1740
The virgins also shall on feastful days
Visit his tomb with flow'rs, only bewailing
His lot unfortunate in nuptial choice,
From whence captivity and loss of eyes.
Ciiqr. All is best, though we oft doubt What th' unsearchable dispose
Of highest Wisdom brings about,
And ever best found in the close.
Oft he seems to hide his face,
But unexpectedly returns, 1750
And to his faithful champion hath in place
Bore witness gloriously: whence Gaza mourns
And all that band them to resist
His uncontrollable intent;
His servants he with new acquist
Of true experience from this great event,
With peace and consolation hath dismist,
And calm of mind all passion spent.
COM US, A MASK.
Presented at Ludlow Castle, 1634, before the Earl of Bridgewater, then President of Wales.
The attendant Spirit, afterwards in the halit
Comus, with his Crew.
Sabrina, the Nymph.
The chief persins who presented were,
The Lord Brackly.
Mr. Thomas Egerton, his brother.
The Lady Alice Egerton.
The first Scene discovers a wild wood—The attendant Spirit decends or enters.
JJEFOiE the starry threshold of Jove's court
My mansion is, where those immortal shapes
Of bright aerial spirits live inspher'd
In regions mild of clam and serene air.
Above the smoke and stir of this dim spot,
Which men call Earth, and with low thoughtcdcare
Confin'd, and pester'd in this pin-fold here,
Strive to keep up a frail and feverish being,
Unmindful of the crown that Virtue gives
After this mortal change to her true servants, 10
Amongst the enthron'd gods on sainted scats.
Yet some there be that by due steps aspire
To lay their just hands on that golden key
That opes the palace of Eternity:
To such my errand is; and but for such,
I would not soil these pure ambrosial weeds
With the rank vapours of this sin-worn mold.
But to my task. Neptune besides the sway
Of every salt flood, and each ebbing stream,
Took in by lot 'twixt high and neither Jove 20
Imperial rule of all the sea-girt iles,
That like to rich and various gems inlay
The unadorn'd bosom of the Deep,
.Which he to grace his tributary gods
By course commits to several goverment,
And gives them leave to wear their saphir crowns,
And wield their little tridents: but this ile,
The greatest and the best of all the main,
He quarters to his blne-hair'd deities;
And all his tract that fronts the falling sun 30
A noble peer of mickle trust and power
Has in his charge, with temper'd awe to guide
An old and haughty nation proud in arms:
Where his fair offspring nurs'd in princely lore
Are coming to attend their father's state,
And new-intrusted scepter ; but their way
Lies through the perplex'd paths of this drear wood.
The nodding horror of whose shady brows
Threats the forlorn and wand'ring passenger;
And here their tender age might suffer peril, 40
But that by quick command from sovran Jove
I was dispatch'd for their defence and guard;
And listen why, for I will tell you now
What never yet was heard in tale or song,
From old or modern bard, in hall or bower.
Bacchus, that first from out the purple grape
Crush'd the sweet poison of mis-used wine,
After the Tuscan mariners transform'd,
Coasting the Tyrrhene shore, as the winds listed,
On Circe's iland fell; (who knows not Circe 50
The daughter of the Sun? whose charmed cup
Whoever tasted, lost his upright shape,
And downward fell into a groveling swine)
This nymph that gaz'd upon his clust'ring locks,