« PreviousContinue »
A Plain, between the British and Roman Camps.
Enter Posthumus, with a bloody Handkerchi¢ Post. Yea, bloody cloth, I'll keep thee; for I wish'd
Thou shouldst be colour'd thus. You married ones,
The Field of Battle.
An Engagement between the Britons and the Romans— the Britons are repulsed.
Enter Posthumus and lAcmxo,Jighting.—Iachimo is disarmed.
Post. Or yield thee, Roman, or thou diest!
Iach. Peasant, behold my breast!
Post. No; take thy life, and mend it. [Exit.
Iach. The heaviness and guilt within my bosom Takes off my manhood: I have belied a lady, The princess of this country, and the air on't Revengingly enfeebles me; or could this carl, A very drudge of nature's, have subdu'd me 'In my profession? Knighthoods and honours, borne As I wear mine, are titles but of scorn. With Heaven against me, what is sword or shield? My guilt, my guilt o'erpowers me, and I yield.
[Drums, Trumpets, 'c. —Exit.
An Engagement between the Britons and the Romans, in which the Romans fly before Belarius, GuideRius, and Arviragus.
The Forest, near the Cave.
Drums, Trumpets, fyc.
Enter Pisanio and SeconD Lord.
2 Lord. This is a day tun'd strangely. Cam'st thou from where they made the stand?
Pisanio. I did: Though you, it seems, come from the fliers. 2 Lord. I did.
Pisanio. No blame be to you, sir; for all was lost, But that the heavens fought: The king himself, Of his wings destitute, the army broken, And but the backs of Britons seen, all flying Through a straight lane: the enemy full hearted, Lolling the tongue with slaughtering, struck down Some mortally, some slightly touch'd, some falling Merely through fear; that the straight pass was
damn'd With dead men, hurt behind, and cowards living To die with lengthen'd shame. .r. 2 lord. Where was this lane i
*J£isanio. Close by the battle, ditch'd, and wall'd
with turf; Which gave advantage to an ancient soldier; (An honest one, I warrant;)—athwart the lane, He, with two striplings, (lads, more like to run The country base, than to commit such slaughter), Made good the passage; cry'd to the fliers, " Stand! Or we are Romans, and will give you that Like beasts, which you shun beastly; and may save, But to look back in frown: stand, stand !"—These
2 Lord. Were there but three? Pisanio, There was a fourth man, in a poor rustic habit, That stood the front with them. These matchless
four, Accommodated by the place, gilded pale looks; Part, shame; part, spirit renew'd; that some, turn'd
2 Lord. This was strange chance.—
Pisanio. Nay, do not wonder:—go with me, and see These wonders, sir, and join the general joy.
(Drums, Trumpets, fyc.—Exeunt.
Another Part of the Forest.
Post. To-day, how many would have given their honours To have sav'd their carcasses? took heel to do't, And yet died too ?—I, in mine own woe charm'd,
Could not find death, where I did hear him groan;
Nor feel him, where he struck.—
Well, I will find him:
No more a Briton, I have resumed again
The part I came in: Fight I will no more,
But yield me to the veriest hind, that shall
Once touch my shoulder. Great the slaughter is
On either side. For me, my ransom's death;
On either side I come to spend my breath;
Which neither here I'll keep, nor bear again,
But end it by some means for Imogen. [Exit.
A Retreat sounded.
Cymbeline, Belarius, Guiderius, Arviragus, Pisanio, and British Soldiers, discovered.
Cym. Stand by my side, you, whom the gods have
Bel. I never saw