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Boy. Grandsire, 'tis Ovid's Metamorphosis :
My mother gav't me.

For love of her that's gone,
Perhaps, she cull'd it from among the rest.

Tit. Soft ! see how busily she turns the leaves!
Help her: what would she find ?-Lavinia, shall I read ?
This is the tragic tale of Philomel,
And treats of Tereus' treason, and his rape;
And rape, I fear, was root of thine annoy.

Mar. See, brother, see! note, how she quotes the leaves.

Tit. Lavinia, wert thou thus surpriz’d, sweet girl,
Ravish'd and wrong'd, as Philomela was,
Fore'd in the ruthless, vast, and gloomy woods ? -
See, see!
Ay, such a place there is, where we did hunt,
(Oh, had we never, never, hunted there!)
Pattern'd by that the poet here describes,
By nature made for murders, and for rapes.

Mar. Oh! why should nature build so foul a den,
Unless the gods delight in tragedies ?

Tit. Give signs, sweet girl, for here are none but friends, What Roman lord it was durst do the deed : Or slunk not Saturnine, as Tarquin erst, That left the camp to sin in Lucrece' bed ?

Mar. Sit down, sweet niece :-brother, sit down by me.Apollo, Pallas, Jove, or Mercury, Inspire me, that I may this treason find ! My lord, look here ;-look here, Lavinia : This sandy plot is plain; guide, if thou canst, This after me. [He writes his name with his staff, and guides

it with feet and mouth.

I have writ my name
Without the help of any hand at all.
Curs'd be that heart, that forc'd us to this shift!
Write thou, good niece; and here display, at last,
What God will have discover'd for revenge.

· Soft! see how busily she turns the leaves !] In all the old copies this line stands,

“ Soft ! so busily she turns the leaves!” it is clearly defective, and our emendation is that of the corr. fo. 1632: it cures the halting measure, and clears the sense.

1 I have writ my name] The corr. fo. 1632 inserts where—Where I have writ my name;" but it should seem that There would be more proper ; and, in this uncertainty, we leave the old text unaltered.


Heaven guide thy pen to print thy sorrows plain,
That we may know the traitors, and the truth!

[She takes the staff in her mouth, and guides it

with her stumps, and writes. Tit. Oh! do you read, my lord, what she hath writ? Stuprum-Chiron-Demetrius.

Mar. What, what !—the lustful sons of Tamora
Performers of this heinous, bloody deed ?

Tit. Magni dominator poli,
Tam lentus audis scelera ? tam lentus vides?

Mar. Oh! calm thee, gentle lord, although, I know,
There is enough written upon this earth
To stir a mutiny in the mildest thoughts,
And arm the minds of infants to exclaims.
My lord, kneel down with me; Lavinia, kneel,
And kneel, sweet boy, the Roman Hector's hope,
And swear with me,—as with the woful feere?,
And father, of that chaste dishonour'd dame,
Lord Junius Brutus sware for Lucrece' rape, -
That we will prosecute, by good advice,
Mortal revenge upon these traitorous Goths,
And see their blood, or die with this reproach.

Tit. 'Tis sure enough, an you knew how to do it';
But if you hurt these bear-whelps, then beware:
The dam will wake, and if she wind you once,
She's with the lion deeply still in league,
And lulls him whilst she playeth on her back ;
And when he sleeps will she do what she list.
You're a young huntsman : Marcus, let it alone;
And, come, I will go get a leaf of brass,
And with a gad of steel' will write these words,
And lay it by. The angry northern wind

2 - as with the woful FEERE,] “ Feere” or “fere" is companion, from the Sax. fera: it is used by Chaucer (in his “ Troilus and Cressida"), where he speaks of “Orpheus and Eurydice, his fere," and by Sir Thomas More for a wife; and by other poets for a husband or wife.

3 'Tis sure enough, an you knew how to DO IT;] The three last words are from the corr. fo. 1632 : they are not absolutely necessary, but they complete the line, and probably had dropped out in the press. For "good advice," three lines above, perhaps we ought to read “ by good device."

* And with a GAD of steel] Malone correctly informs us that " gad" in A. S. means the point of a spear, but according to some etymologists, it ought rather to be translated a club. (See Todd's Johnson's Dict. : v. gad.) It is very evident that it here means a steel point, with which Andronicus was to engrave on the “ leaf of brass."

Will blow these sands, like Sybil's leaves, abroad,
And where's your lesson then ?-Boy, what say you ?

Boy. I say, my lord, that if I were a man,
Their mother's bed-chamber should not be safe
For these bad bondmen to the yoke of Rome.

Mar. Ay, that's my boy! thy father hath full oft For his ungrateful country done the like.

Boy. And, uncle, so will I, an if I live.

Tit. Come, go with me into mine armoury;
Lucius, I'll fit thee: and withal, my boy
Shall carry from me to the empress' sons
Presents, that I intend to send them both.
Come, come; thou'lt do thy message, wilt thou not ?

Boy. Ay, with my dagger in their bosoms, grandsire.

Tit. No, boy, not so; I'll teach thee another course.
Lavinia, come.—Marcus, look to my house:
Lucius and I'll go brave it at the court;
Ay, marry, will we, sir; and we'll be waited on.

[Exeunt Tirus, LAVINIA, and Boy.
Mar. O heavens! can you hear a good man groan,
And not relent, or not compassion him ?
Marcus, attend him in his ecstacy,
That hath more scars of sorrow in his heart,
Than foe-men's marks upon his batter'd shield ;
But yet so just, that he will not revenge.-
Revenge, ye heavens, for old Andronicus'!



The Same. A Room in the Palace.

Enter AARON, DEMETRIUS, and CHIRON, at one door; at another

door, young LUCIUS, and an Attendant, with a bundle of weapons, and verses writ upon them.

Chi. Demetrius, here's the son of Lucius; He hath some message to deliver us.

Aar. Ay, some mad message from his mad grandfather.

s Revenge, Ye heavens, for old Andronicus!) Another instance in which “ye" has always been misprinted the in the old editions. The is amended to "ye" in the corr. fo. 1632. See also“ Coriolanus,” A. i. sc. 6, Vol. iv. p. 620.

Boy. My lords, with all the humbleness I may,
I greet your honours from Andronicus ;-
[Aside.] And pray the Roman gods confound you both. .

Dem. Gramercy, lovely Lucius. What's the news?
Boy. [Aside.] That you are both decipher'd, that's the

news °,

For villains mark'd with rape. [To them.] May it please you,
My grandsire, well advis'd, hath sent by me
The goodliest weapons of his armoury,
To gratify your honourable youth,
The hope of Rome; for so he bade me say,
And so I do, and with his gifts present
Your lordships, that whenever you have need,
You may be armed and appointed well.
And so I leave you both, [Aside.] like bloody villains.

[Exeunt Boy and Attendant. Dem. What's here? A scroll, and written round about?

· Let's see;

Integer vitæ, scelerisque purus,
Non eget Mauri jaculis, nec arcu.

Chi. Oh! 'tis a verse in Horace. I know it well :
I read it in the grammar long ago.

Aar. Ay, just !-a verse in Horace ;-right, you have it. [Aside.] Now, what a thing it is to be an ass ! Here's no sound jest ! the old man hath found their guilt, And sends them weapons' wrapp'd about with lines, That wound, beyond their feeling, to the quick; But were our witty empress well a-foot, She would applaud Andronicus' conceit: But let her rest in her unrest awhile.[To them.] And now, young lords, was't not a happy star Led us to Rome, strangers, and more than so, Captives, to be advanced to this height? It did me good, before the palace gate To brave the tribune in his brother's hearing.

Dem. But me more good, to see so great a lord Basely insinuate, and send us gifts.

Aar. Had he not reason, lord Demetrius?

6 That you are both decipher'd, that's the news,] This line, preserved in both the 4tos, is omitted in the folio. Seven lines lower down in the same speech, “that,” necessary to the sense, was left out in all the old copies.

7 And sends THEM weapons] The 4to, 1600, alone reads, “And sends them weapons :” other editions, “ the weapons."


you not use his daughter very friendly ?
Dem. I would, we had a thousand Roman dames
At such a bay', by turn to serve our lust.

Chi. A charitable wish, and full of love.
Aar. Here lacks but your mother for to say amen.
Chi. And that would she for twenty thousand more.

Dem. Come, let us go, and pray to all the gods
For our beloved mother in her pains.
Aar. Pray to the devils; the gods have given us over.

[Trumpets sound.
Dem. Why do the emperor's trumpets flourish thus ?
Chi. Belike, for joy the emperor hath a son.
Dem. Soft! who comes here?

Enter a Nurse, with a Black-a-moor Child in her arms. Nur. Good morrow, lords. Oh! tell me, did you see Aaron the Moor?

Aar. Well, more, or less, or ne'er a whit at all, Here Aaron is: and what with Aaron now?

Nur. Oh gentle Aaron! we are all undone. Now help, or woe betide thee evermore!

dar. Why, what a caterwauling dost thou keep. What dost thou wrap and fumble in thine arms ?

Nur. Oh! that which I would hide from heaven's eye,
Our empress' shame, and stately Rome's disgrace.-
She is deliver'd, lords; she is deliver'd.

Aar. To whom?

I mean she's brought to bed.

Well, God Give her good rest! What hath he sent her ? Nur.

A devil.
Aar. Why, then she's the devil's dam: a joyful issue.

Nur. A joyless, dismal, black, and sorrowful issue.
Here is the babe, as loathsome as a toad
Amongst the fairest breeders of our clime.
The empress sends it thee, thy stamp, thy seal,

& At such a bay,] So in a sonnet in “ The Passionate Pilgrim," 1599:

Ah! that I had my lady at this bay." Amongst the fairest BREEDERS of our clime.] Unless we are to take “ breeders” as things bred, there is an error in this line, and the corr. fo. 1632 has burdens instead of " breeders," a not improbable misprint; but we do not alter the text, because it is not impossible that the poet intended “ breeders” to be understood as the consequence of breeding.

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