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my nights!


and me.


Warmth of my brain, and fire of my heart ! Aler. Ha! did she swear? did that sweet creaHad she but shot to see me, had she met me,

ture swear? By this time I had been amongst the gods, I'll not believe it; no, she is all softness, any extasy can make a height,

All melting, mild, and calm as a rocked infant, Or any rapture hurl us to the heavens.

Nor can you wake her into cries: By heaven, Cly. Now, who shall dare to tell him the She is the child of love, and she was born in queen's vow?

smiles. Aler. How fares my y love: ha-neither answer Par. I and my weeping mother heard her

me ! Ye raise my wonder, darkness overwhelms me ;- Sys. And with such fierceness she did aggraIf royal Sysigambis does not weep! Trembling and horror pierce me cold as ice. The foulness of your fault, that I could wish Is she not well? what, none, none answer me? Your majest; would blot her from your breast. Or is it worse? Keep down, ye rising sighs, Aler. Blot her, forget her, hurl her from my And murmur in the hollow of my breast :

bosom, Run to my heart, and gather more sad wind; For ever lose that star that gilds my life, That, when the voice of fate shall call you forth, Guide of my days, and goddess of Ye may, at once, rush from the seat of life, No, she shall stay with me in spite of vows, Blow the blood out, and burst like a bladder. My soul and body both are twisted with her. Heph. I would relate it, but my courage fails The god of love empties his golden quiver,

Shoots every grain of her into my heart; Aler. If she be dead-That if's impossible; She is all mine, by Heaven I feel her here, And let none here affirm it, for his soul : Panting and warm, the dearest- Statira! For he that dares but think so damned a lie, Sys. Have patience, son, and trust to Heaven I'll bave his body straight impaled before ine, And glut my eyes upon his bleeding entrails. If my authority, or the remembrance

Cass. How will this engine of unruly passion Of dead Darius, or her mother's soul, Roar when we have rammed him to the mouth can work upon her, she again is yours. with poison ?

Aler. O mother, help me, help your wounded Aler. Why stand you all, as you were rooted

son, here,

And move the soul of my offended dear; Like the senseless trees, while to the stupid grove But fly, haste, ere the sad procession's made. I, like a wounded lion, groan my griefs, Spend not a thought in reply-Begone, And none will answer-what, not my Hephestion? If you would have me live-and, Parisatis, If thou hast any love for Alexander,

Hlang thou about her knees, wash them with tears : If ever I obliged thee by my care,

Nay haste, the breath of gods, and eloquence When my quick sight has watched thee in the Of angels, go along with you-Oh

my heart ! fight;

(Ereunt Sys, and Par. Or if to see thee bleed I sent forth cries,

Lys. Now let your majesty, who feels the torAnd, like a mother, washed thee with my tears;

ments If this be true, if I deserve thy love,

And sharpest pangs of love, encourage 'mine. Ease me, and tell the

cause of


Aler. HaHeph. Your mourning queen (which I had told Cly. Are you a madman ? Is this a time? before,

Lys. Yes; for I see he cannot be unjust to Had you been calm) has no disease but sorrow,

me, Which was occasioned first by jealous pangs: Lest something worse befal himself. She heard, (for what can 'scape a watchful lo- Alex. Why dost thou tempt me thus to thy unver:)

doing? That you at Susa, breaking all your vows,

Death thou shouldst have, were it not courted so: Relapsed, and conquered by Roxana's charms, But know, to thy confusion, that any word, Gave up yourself devoted to her arms.

Like destiny, admits not a reverse; Aler. I know that subtle creature, in my riot, Therefore in chains thou shalt behold the nupe My reason gone, seduced me to her bed;

tials But when I waked I shook the Circe off, Of my Hephestion- -Guards, take him prisoner. Though that enchantress held me by the arm, Lys. I shall not easily resign my sword,

wept, and gazed with all the force of love; Tili i have dyed it in my rival's blood. Nor grieved I less for that, which i had done, Aler. I charge you, kill hiin not, take him Than when at Thais' şuit, enraged with wine,

alive; I set the famed Persepolis on fire.

The dignity of kings is now concerned, Heph. Your queen Statira took it so to heart, And I will find a way to tame this beast. That, in the agony of love, she swore

Cly. Kneel, for I see lightning in his eyes. Never to see your majesty again ;

Lys. I neither hope nor ask a pardon of him; With dreadful imprecations she confirmed But if he should restore my sword, I would Her oath, and I much fear that she will keep it. Vith a new violence run against my rival.


Aler. Sure we at last shall conquer this fierce lion: As if you'd leave the empire of the world,
Hence from my sight, and bear him to a dungeon! Which you with toil have won.
Perdiccas, give this lion to a lion:

Aler. Would I had not!
None speak for him! fly! stop his mouth, away! There's no true joy in such unwieldy fortune.
Cly, The king's extremely moved.

Eternal gazers lasting troubles make, Eum. I dare not speak.

All find my spots, but few my brightness take. Cly. This comes of love and women; 'tis all Stand off, and give me air ! madness;

Why was I born a prince, proclaimed a god, Yet were I heated now with wine, I should Yet have no liberty to look abroad? Be preaching to the king for this rash fool. Thus palaces in prospect bar the eye, Åler. Come hither, Clytus, and my dear He- Which, pleased and free, would o'er the cotphestion ;

tage fly, Lend me your arms, help, for I'm sick o’th’sud-O'er flowery lands to the gay distant sky. den.

Farewell, then, empire, and the racks of love! I fear, betwixt Statira's cruel love,

By all the gods, I will to wilds remove; And fond Roxana's arts, your king will fall. Stretched like a Sylvan god on grass lie down,

Cly. Better the Persian race were all undone. And quite forget, that e'er I wore a crown. Heph. Look up, my lord, and bend not thus

(Ereunt. your



And force him yet to give you to my arms.“ SCENE I.

Away, Perdiccas-Dear Eumenes, take

The princess to your charge. Enter EUMENES, PHILIP, THESSALUS, PER

[Ereunt PERD. Lys. Guards. DICCAS, LYSIMACHUS, Guards.

Eum. O cruelty ! Eum. FAREWELL, brave spirit! when you come Par. Lead me, Eumenes, lead me from the above,

light, Commend us to Philotas and the rest

Where I may

wait till I his ruin hear, Of our great friends.

Then free my soul to meet him in the air. Thess. Perdiccas, you are grown

[Exeunt PAR. and EUM. In trust, be thankful for your noble office. Phil. See where the jealous proud Roxana Per. As noble as you sentence me, I'd give

comes ! This arm, that Thessalus were so employed. A haughty vengeance gathers up her brow.

Lys. Cease these untimely jars, farewell to all. Thess. Peace! they have raised her to their Fight for the king as I have done, and then

ends; observe. You may be worthy of a death like mineLead on.


Ror. O you have ruined me, I shall be mad:

Said you, so passionately? is't possible? Par. Ah, my Lysimachus, where are you go. So kin to her, and so unkind to me?

Cass. More than your utmost fancy can invent. Whither? to be devoured? O barbarous prince! He swooned thrice at hearing of her vow, Could you expose your life to the king's rage, And when our care as oft had brought back life, And yet remember mine was tied to yours ? He drew his sword, and offered at his breast.

Lys. The gods preserve you ever from the ills, Pol. Then railed at you with such unbeard-of That threaten me: Live, madam, to enjoy

curses ! A nobler fortune, and forget this wretch.

Ror. Away, begone, and give a whirlwind I ne'er had worth, nor is it possible

room, That all the blood, which I shall lose this day, Or I will blow you up like dust : avaunt! Should merit this rich sorrow from your eyes. Madness but meanly represents my toil. Par. The king, I know, is bent to thy destruc Roxana and Statira, they are names tion;

That must forever jar: eternal discord, Now by command they forced me from his Fury, revenge, disdain, and indignation knees :

Tear my swollen breast, make way for fire and But take this satisfaction in thy death,

tempest. No power, command, my mother's, sister's tears, My brain is burst, debate and reason quenched, Shall cause me to survive thy cruel loss. The storm is up, and my hot bleeding heart Lys. Live, princess, live, howe'er the king dis- Splits with the rack, while passions, like the

winds, Perhaps, unarmed and fighting for your sake, Rise up to heaven, and put out all the stars. I may perform what shall amaze the world, What saving hand, or what a mighty arm,


dain me:

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Can raise me sinking?

He swore the globe of heaven and earth were vile Cass. Let your own arm save you!

To those rich worlds, and talk'd, and kiss’d, and 'Tis in your power, your beauty is almighty:

lov’d, Let all the stars go out, your eyes can light them. And made me shame the morning with my Wake then, bright planet, that should rule the


Cass. Yet after this prove false!
Wake like the moon, from your too long eclipse, Pol. Horrid perjury!
And we, with all the instruments of war,

Cass. Not to be matched! Trumpets and drums, will help your glorious la- Pol. O you must find revenge! bour.

Cass. A person of your spirit be thus slighted, Pol. Pat us to act, and with a violence, For whose desire all earth should be too little ! That fits the spirit of a most wronged woman ; Ror. And shall the daughter of Darius hold Let not Medea's dreadful vengeance stand

him? A pattern more, but draw your own so fierce, That puny girl, that ape of my ambition? It may for ever be original.

That cried for milk when I was nursed in blood! Cass. Touch not, but dash with strokes so Shall she, made up of watry elements, bravely bold,

A cloud, shall she embrace my proper god, Till

you have formed a face of so much horror, While I am cast like lightning from his hand? That gaping furies may run frighted back; No, I must scorn to prey on common things; That envy may devour herself for madness, Though hurled to earth by this disdainful Jove, And sad Medusa's head be turned to stone. I will rebound to my own orb of fire, Ror. Yes, we will have revenge, my instru. And with the wreck of all the heavens expire. ments;

Cass. Now you appear yourself ; For there is nothing you have said of me,

'Tis noble anger. But comes far short, wanting of what I am. Ror. May the illustrious blood, that' fills my When in my nonage I at Zogdia lived,

Amongst my she companions I would reign ; And ripens to be perfect godhead born,
Drew them from idleness, and little arts Come forth a fury; may Barsina's bastard
Of coining looks, and laying snares for lovers, Tread it to hell, and rule as sovereign lord,
Broke all their glasses, and their tiers tore, When I permit Statira to enjoy
Taught them, like Amazons, to ride and chase Roxana's right, and strive not to destroy.
Wild beasts in desarts, and to master men.
Cass. Her looks, her words, her every motion

Enter SYSIGAMBIS, STATIRA, in mourning, fires me.

Cass. Behold her going to fulfil her vow; Ror. But when I heard of Alexander's con- Old Sysigambis, whom the king engaged, quests;

Resists and awes her with authority. How with a handful he had millions slain,

Ror. 'Twas rashly vowed indeed, and I should Spoiled all the east, their queens his captives made,

Sys. Oh, my Statira, how has passion changed Yet with what chastity and godlike temper

thee ! He saw their beauties, and with pity bowed; Think if thou drive the king to such extremes, Methought I hung upon my father's lips, What in his fury may he not denounce And wished him tell the wondrous tale again; Against the poor remains of lost Darius ? Left all my sports, the woman now returned, Stat. I know, I know he will be kind to you, And sighs uncalled would from my bosom fly: And to my mourning sister, for my sake; And all the night, as my Adraste told me, And tell him, how with my departing breath, In slumbers groaned, and murmured Alexander. I railed not, but spoke kindly of his person, Cass. Curse on the name! but I will soon re- Nay, wept to think of our divided loves, move

And sobbing sent, at last, forgiveness to him. That bar of my ambition and my love. [Aside. Ror. Grant, heaven, some ease to this distractRor. At last to Zogdia this triumpher came,

ed wretch ! And, covered o'er with Jaurels, forced our city :. Let her not linger out a life in torments, At night I by my father's order stood,

Be these her last words, and at once dispatch her, With fifty virgins waiting at a banquet.

Sys. No, by the everlasting fire I swear,
But oh ! how glad was I to hear his court, By my Darius' soul, I never more
To feel the pressure of his glowing hand, Will dare to look on Alexander's face,
And taste the dear, the false protesting lips ! If you refuse to see him.
Cass. Wormwood and hemlock henceforth Rox. Curse on that cunning tongue ! I fear her
grow about them!

Ror. Gods! that a man should be so great Cass. No, she's resolved.
and base!

Stat. 'I cast me at your feet,
What said he not, when in the bridal bed, To bathe them with my tears; or, if you please,
He clasped my yielding body in his arms! I'll let out life, and wash them with my blood,
When with his fiery lips devouring mine, But still conjure you not to rack my soul,
And moulding with his hand my throbbing breast, Nor hurry my wild thoughts to perfect madness

pity her.



a rage,

Should now Darius' awful ghost appear, Yet when strong jealousy inflames the soul, Apd my pale mother stand beseech ng by, The weak will roar, and calms to tempests roll. I would persist to death, and keep my vow, Rival, take heed, and tempt me not too far!

Ror. She shews a certain bravery of soul, My blood may boil, and blushes shew a war. Which I should praise in any but my rival. Ror. When you retire to your romantic cell, Sys. Die then, rebellious wretch ! thou art not I'll make thy solitary mansion hell:

Thou shalt not rest by day, nor sleep by night, That soft beloved, nor durst thou share my blood. But still Roxana shall thy spirit fright: Go hide thy baseness in the lonely grot, Wanton in dreams, if thou dar's dream of bliss, Ruin thy mother and thy royal house,

Thy roving ghost may think to steal a kiss; Pernicious creature ! shed the innocent But when to his sought bed, thy wandering air Blood, and sacrifice to the king's wrath

Shall for the happiness it wished repair, The lives of all thy people; Ay, begone,

How will it groan to find thy rival there! And hide thee, where bright virtue never shone : How ghastly wilt thou look, when thou shalt see, The day will shun thee, nay the stars, that view Through the drawn curtains, that great man and Mischiefs and murders, deeds to thee not new,

me, Will start at this-Go, go, thy crimes deplore, Wearied with laughing, joys shot to the soul, And never think of Sysigambis more. [Ereunt. While thou shalt grinning stand, and gnash thy Ror. Madam, I hope you will a queen forgive :

teeth, and howl! Roxana weeps to see Statira grieve.

Stat. O barbarous rage! my tears I cannot How noble is the brave resolve you make,

keep, To quit the world for Alexander's sake!


full eyes in spite of me will weep. Vast is your mind, you dare thus greatly die, Rox. The King and I in various pictures drawn, And yield the king to one so mean as ľ: Clasping each other, shaded o'er with lawih, 'Tis a revenge will make the victor smart, Shall be the daily presents I will send, And much fear your death will break his heart. To help thy sorrow to her journey's end.

Stat. You counterfeit, I fear, and know too well And when we hear at last thy hour draws nigh, How much your eyes all beauties else excel : My Alexander, my dear love, and I, Roxana, who, though not a princess born,

Will come and hasten on thy lingering fates, In chains could make the mighty victor mourn; And smile and kiss thy soul out through thegrates, Forgetting power when wine had made him warm, Stat. 'Tis well, I thank thee; thou hast waked And senseless, yet even then you knew to charm : Preserve him by those arts that cannot fail, Whose boiling now no temper can assuage : While I the loss of what I loved bewail.

I meet thy tides of jealousy with more, Ror. I hope your majesty will give me leave Dare thee to duel,

and dash thee o'er and o'er. To wait you to the grove, where you would Ror. What would you dare ? grieve;

Stat. Whatever you dare do, Where, like the turtle, you the loss will moan My warring thoughts the bloodiest tracts pursue ; Of that dear mate, and murmur all alone. I am by love a fury made, like you : Stat. No, proud triumpher o'er my falling Kill or be killed, thus acted by despair. state,

Ror. Sure the disdained Statira does not dare? Thou shalt not stay to fill me with my fate. Stat. Yes, towering proud Roxana, but I dare. Go to the conquest, which your wiles may boast, Ror. I tower indeed o'er thee; And tell the world you left Statira lost; Like a fair wood, the shade of kings I stand, Go seize my faithless Alexander's hand, While thou, sick weed, do but infest the land. Both hand and heart were once at my com- Stat. No, like an ivy, I will curl thee round, mand:

Thy sapless trunk of all its pride confound, Grasp his loved neck, die on his fragrant breast, Then, dry and withered, bend thee to the ground. Love him like me, whose love can't be exprest, What Sysigambis' threats, objected fears, He must be happy, and you more than blest ; My sister's sighs, and Alexander's tears, While I in darkness hide me from the day, Could not effect, thy rival rage has done : That with my mind I may his form survey, My soul, whose start at breach of oaths begun, And think so long, till I think life away. Shall to thy ruini violated run. Ror. No, sickly virtue, no,

I'll see the king in spite of all I swore, Thou shalt not think, nor thy love's loss bemoan, Though curst, that thou may'st never see him Nor shall past pleasures through thy fancy run ; That were to make thee blest as I can be : But thy no-thought I must, I will decree.

Enter PERDICCAS, ALEXANDER, SYSIGAMBIS, As thus : I'll torture thee till thou art mad,

atten tanis, &c. And then no thought to purpose can be had. Per. Madam, your royal mother, and the king, Stat. How frail, how cowardly is woman's Altır. O my Statira ! O my angry dear! mind !

Turn thine eyes on me, I would talk to them: We shriek at thunder, dread the rustling wind, What shall I say to work upon thy soul? And glittering swords the brightest eyes will Where shall I throw me? whither shall I fall?: blind.

Stat. For me you shall not fall.



Aler. For thee I will,

And while I feel thy hand, my body glows: Before thy feet I'll have a grave dug up, Therefore be quick, and take your last adieu, And perish quick, be buried straight alive : These your last sighs, and these your parting tears: Give but, as the earth grows heavy on me, Farewell, farewell, a long and last farewell! A tender look, and a relenting word;

Alex. O my Hephestion, bear me, or I sink. Say but, 'twas pity that so great a man,

Stat. Nay, you may take-Heaven, how my Who had ten thousand deaths in battles 'scaped,

heart throbs! For one poor fault so early should remove, You may, you may, if yet you think me worthy, And fall a martyr to the god of love.

Take from these trembling lips a parting kiss. Ror. Is then Roxana's love and life so poor, Aler. No, let me starve first-why, Statira, That for another you can chuse to die,

why? Rather than live for her? what have I done? What is the meaning of all this?-O gods! How am I altered since at Susa last

I know the cause, my working brain divines-
You swore, and sealed it with a thousand kisses, You'll say you pardoned, but with this reserve,
Rather than lose Roxana's smallest charm, Never to make me blest as I have been,
You would forego the conquest of the world? To slumber by the side of that false man,

Aler. Madam, you best can tell what magicdrew Nor give a heaven of beauty to a devil:
Me to your charms, but let it not be told Think you not thus ? Speak, madam.
For your own sake; take that conquered world, Sys. She is not worthy, son, of so much sor-
Dispose of crowns and sceptres as you please,

row : Let me but have the freedom of an huir, Speak comfort to him, speak, my dear Statira, To make account with this wronged imocence. I ask thee by these tears: Ah canst thou e'er Stat. You know, my lord, you did commit a Pretend to love, yet with dry eyes behold him? fault;

Aler. Silence more dreadful than severest I ask but this, repeat your crime no more.

sounds! Aler. O never, never.

Would she but speak, though death, eternal exile Rox. Am I rejected, then?

Hung on her lips, yet, while her tongue pronounAler. Exhaust my treasures,

ces, Take all the spoils of the fair conquered Indies ; | There must be music even in my undoing. But, for the ease of my afflicted soul,

Stat. Still, my loved lord, I cannot see you Go, where I never may behold thee more. Ror. Yes, I will go, ungrateful as thou art, Nor can I ever

yield to share your bed : Bane to my life, thou torment of my days,

0 I shall find Roxana in your arms, Thou murderer of the world! for, as thy sword and taste her kisses left upon your lips. Hath cut the lives of thousand thousand men, Her curst embraces have defiled your body, So will thy tongue undo all woman-kind. Nor shall I find the wonted sweetness there, But Pul be gone; this last disdain hath cured me, But artificial smells, and stinking odours. And I am now grown so indifferent,

Aler. Yes, obstinate, I will ; madam, you shall, I could behold you kiss without a pang, You shall, in spite of this resistless passion, Nay, take a torch and light you to your bed : Be served; but you must give me leave to think But do not trust me! no; for if you do,

You never loved.- could I see you thus ! By all the furies and the flames of love,

Hell has not half the tortures that you raise. By love, which is the hottest burning hell,

Cly. Never did passions combat thus before. I'll set you both on fire to blaze for ever

. [Erit. Aler. 0 I shall burst, Stat. O Alexander, is it possible? Good gods, Unless you give me leave to rave a while. That guilt can shew so lovely!-Yet I pardon, Sys. Yet e'er destruction sweep us both away, Forgive thee all, by thy dear life I do.

Relent, and break through all to pity him! Aler. Ha, pardon! saidst thou, pardon me? Aler. Yes, I will shake this Cupid from my Sys. Now all thy mother's blessings fall upon

arms, thee,

If all the rages of the earth would fright him; My best, my most beloved, my own Statira! Drown him in the deep bowl of Hercules ; Alex. Is it then true, that thou hast pardoned Make the world drunk, and then, like Æolus, me?

When he gave passage to the struggling winds, And is it given me thus to touch thy hand, I'll strike my spear into the reeling globe And fold thy body in my longing arms ? To let it blood, set Babylon in a blaze, To gaze upon thy eyes, my happier stars, And drive this god of flaines with more consuTo taste thy lip, and thy dear balmy breath, While every sigh comes forth so fraught with Stat. My presence will but force him to exsweets,

tremes ; 'Tis incense to be offered to a god.

Besides, 'tis death to me to see his pains, Stat. Yes, dear impostor, 'tis most true, that I Yet stand resolved never to yield againHave pardoned thee;

and 'tis as true, that while Permit me to remove. I stand in view of thee, thy eyes will wound, Alex. I charge ye, stay her! Thy tongue will make me wanton as thy wishes; For if she pass, by all the hell I feels

ming fire.

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