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(Prompted by blind revenge and wild despair) Dec. My business is with Cato; Cæsar sees Were to refuse th' awards of Providence, The straits to which you're driven ; and, as he And not to rest in Heaven's determination.
knows Already have we shown our love to Rome, Cato's high worth, is anxious for your life. Now let us show submission to the gods.
Cato. My life is grafted on the fate of Rome. We took up arms, not to revenge ourselves, Would he save Cato, bid him spare his counBut free the commonwealth ; when this end fails,
Tell your dictator this; and tell him, Cato Arms have no farther use. Our country's cause, Disdains a life which he has power to offer. That drew our swords, now wrests them from Dec. Rome and her senators submit to our hands,
Cæsar; And bids us pot delight in Roman blood Her gen’rals and her consuls are no more, Unprofitably shed. What men could do, Who check'd his conquests, and denied his tri Is done already: heaven and earth will wit
umphs ; ness,
Why will not Cato be this Cæsar's friend? If Rome must fall, that we are innocent.
Cato. Those very reasons thou hast urg'd Sem. This smooth discourse, and mild beha
forbid it. viour, oft
Dec. Cato, I've orders to expostulate, Conceal a traitor. Something whispers me | And reason with you, as from friend to friend All is not right-Cato, beware of Lucius. Think on the storm that gathers o'er your head
Aside to Cato. And threatens ev'ry hour to burst upon it. Cato. Let us appear nor rash nor diffident; Still may you stand high in your country's hi Immod'rate valor swells into a fault;
nors; And fear admitted into public councils, Do but comply, and make your peace wit Betrays like treason. Let us shun them both.
Cæsar, Fathers, I cannot see that our affairs
Rome will rejoice, and cast its eyes on Cato, Are grown thus desp'rate; we have bulwarks | As on the second of mankind. round us;
Cato. No more: Within our walls are troops inur'd to toil I must not think on life on such conditions. In Afric's heat, and season'd to the sun;
Dec. Cæsar is well acquainted with you Numidia's spacious kingilom lies behind us,
virtues, Ready to rise at its young prince's call.
And therefore sets this value on your life. While there is hope, do not distrust the gods; Let him but know the price of Cato's frien But wait at least till Cæsar's near approach
ship, Force us to yield. "Twill never be too late | And name your terms. To sue for chains, and own a conqueror.
Cato. Bid him disband his legions, Why should Rome fall a moment ere her time? Restore the comnionwealth to liberty, No: let us draw her term of freedom out Submit his actions to the public censure, In its full length, and spin it to the last, And stand the judgement of a Roman senate So shall we gain still one day's liberty :
Bid him do this, and Cato is his friend. And let me perish, but in Cato's judgement, | Dec. Cato, the world talks loudly of yo A day, an hour, of virtuous liberty
wisdom Is worth a whole eternity in bondage.
Cato. Nay moretho' Cato's voice was, 19
employ'd Enter Marcus.
To clear the guilty, and to varnish crimes, Mar. Fathers, this moment, as I watch'd the
| Myself will mount the rostrum in his favo
And strive to gain his pardon from the pec gate,
Dec. A style like this becomes a conque Lodg’d in my post, a herald is arriv'd From Cæsar's camp, and with him coines old
Cato. Decius, a style like this becomes a
man. The Roman knight; he carries in his looks
Dec. What is a Roman that is Cæsar's foe? Impatience, and demands to speak with Cato.
Cato. Greater than Cæsar: he's a friend to Cato. By your permission, fathers—bid him
Dec. Consider, Cato, you're in Utica,
[Exit Marcus. Decius was once my friend; but other pro
And at the head of your own little senate;
You don't now thunder in the capitol, spects Have loos'd those ties, and bound him fast to With all the mouths of Rome to second you. Cæsar.
Cato. Let him consider that, who drives us His message may determine our resolves.
hither; 'Tis Cæsar's sword has made Rome's senate
little, Enter Decius.
And thino'd its ranks. Alas! thy dazzled eye Dec. Cæsar sends health to Cato
Beholds this man in a false glaring light, Cato. Could he send it
Which conquest and success have thrown upon To Cato's slaughter'd friends, it would be wel-. him; come.
Didst thou but view him right, thou'det see Are not your orders to address the senate?
With murder, treason, sacrilege, and crimes And all the virtues we can crowd into it; That strike my soul with horror but to name That Heaven may say it ought to be prolong'd. them.
| Fathers, farewell! Theyoung Numidian prince I know thou look'st on me, as on a wretch Comes forward, and expects to know our counBeset with ills, and cover'd with misfortunes ;
[Exeunt Senators. But, by the gods I swear, millions of worlds
Enter Juba. Should never buy me to be like that Cæsar. Juba, the Roman senate has resolvid, Dec. Does Cato send this answer back to Till time gives better prospects, still to keep Cæsar
The sword unsheath'd, and turn its edge on CaFor all his gen’rous cares and proffer'd friend
Jub. The resolution îts a Roman senate. His cares for me are insolent and vain : | But, Cato, lend ine for a while thy patience, ptuous man! the gods take care of Cato. | And condescend to hear a young man speak. Cæsar show the greatness of his soul, My father, when some days before his death i employ his care for these my friends, He orderd me to march for Utica, ike good use of his ill-gotten pow'r, (Alas, I thought not then his death so near!) ring men much better than himself.
| Wept o'er me, press'd me in his aged arms; Your high unconquer'd heart makes And, as his griefs gave way, My son, said he, you forget
Whatever fortune shall befall thy father, a man; you rush on your destruction. Be Cato's friend; he'll train thee up to great ave done. When I relate hereafter | And virtuous deeds; do but observe him well, of this unhappy embassy,
| Thou'lt shun misfortunes, or thou 'lt learn to De will be in tears. Exit Decius. bear them. Cato, we thank thee.
Cato. Juba, thy father was a worthy prince, ghty genius of immortal Rome And merited, alas! a better fate;
thy voice; thy soul breathes liberty. But Heaven thought otherwise.
In spite of all the fortitude that shines
The senate owns its gratitude to Cato, Subdues my soul, and fills my eyes with tears.
Jub. My father drew respect from foreign
| The kings of Afric sought him for their friend seems fond of life; but what is life? Kings far remote, that rule, as fame reports,
to stalk about, and draw fresh air Behind the hidden sources of the Nile,
Jub. I would not boast the greatness of my
1. This sober conduct is a mighty virtue | To arm Numidia in our cause, and court I kewarm patriots.
Th' assistance of my father's powerful friends ? Calo. Come; no more, Sempronius; Did they know Cato, our remotest kings All here are friends to Rome, and to each other. Would pour embattled multitudes about him : Let us not weaken still the weaker side Their swarthy hosts would darken all our By our divisions.
plains, Sem. Cato, my resentments
Doubling the native horror of the war, Are sacrific'd to Rome– I stand reprov'd. | And making death more grim.
Cato. Fathers, 'tis time you come to a resolve. Cato. And canst thou think
Luc. Cato, we all go into your opinion ; Cato will fly before the sword of Cæsar? Cæsar's behaviour has convinc'd the senate | Reducid, like Hannibal, to seek relief We ought to hold it out till terms arrive. From court to court, and wander up and down Sem. We ought to hold it out till death; but, A vagabond in Afric? Cato,
Jub. Cato, perhaps My private voice is drown'd amidst the senate's. I'm too officious; but my forward cares Calo. Then let us rise, my friends, and strive Would fain preserve a life of so much value: to fill
My heart is wounded, when I see such virtue This little interval, this pause of life,
Afficted by the weight of such misfortunes. (While get our liberty and fales are doubtful)| Cato. Thy nobleness of soul obliges nie. With resolution, friendship, Roman bravery, But know, young prince, that valor soars above
What the world calls misfortune and affliction. | E'en in the Libyan dog-days, hunt him down,
Jul. Prythee, no inore.
And throw the shaggy spoils about your shoulAnd all my soul endeavours at persection.
ders! Cato. Dost thou love watching, abstinence, Jub. Syphax, this old man's talk, though
honey flow'd Laborious virtues all? Learn them from Cato: In ev'ry word, would now lose all its sweetness, Success and fortune must thou learn from Cæ- Cato 's displeas’d, and Marcia lost for ever.
Sy. Young, prince, I yet could give you Jub. The best good fortune that can fall on good advice, Juba,
| Marcia might still be yours. The whole success at which my heart aspires, 1. Jul. What say'st thou, Syphax? Depends on Cato.
By heavens, thou turn'st me all into attention. Cato, What does Juba say?
"Sy. Marcia might still be yours. Thy words confound me.
Jul. As how, dear Syphax ? Jub. I would fain retract them.
Sy. Juba commands Numidia's hardy troops, Give 'em me back again: they aim'd at nothing. Mounted on steeds unus'd to the restraint Cato. Tell me thy wish, young prince; make Of curbs or bits, and fleeter than the winds. not my ear
Give but the word, we'll snatch this damsel up, A stranger to thy thoughts.
And bear her off. Jub. O, they're extravagant;
Jub. Can such dishonest thoughts Still let me hide them.
Rise up in man? Wouldst thou seduce my Cato. What can Juba ask
youth That Cato will refuse?
To do an act that would destroy my honor ? Jub, I fear to name it:
Sy. Gods, I could tear my hair to hear you Marcia-inherits all her father's virtues.
talk! Cato. What wouldst thou say?
Honor's a fine imaginary notion Jub. Cato, thou hast a daughter.
That draws in raw and unexperienc'd men Cato. Adieu, young prince. I would not To real mischiefs, while they hunt a shadow. hear a word
Jub. Wouldst thou degrade thy prince into a Should lessen thee in my esteem. Remember
ruffian? The hand of fate is over us, and Heaven
Sy. The boasted ancestors of these great men, Exacts severity from all our thoughts. Whose virtues you admire, were all such rufIt is not now a time to talk of aught
fians. But chains, or conquest; liberty, or death. | This dread of nations, this almighty Rome,
[Exit. | That comprehends in her wide empire's bounds Enter Syphax.
All under heaven, was founded on a rape; Sy. How's this, my prince? What, cover'd Your Scipios, Cæsars, Pompeys, and your Ćatos with confusion?
(The gods on earth), are all the spurious brood You look as if yon stern philosopher
Of violated maids, of ravish'd Sabines. Had just now chid you.
Jub. Syphax, I fear that hoary head of thine Jub. Syphax, I'm undone.
Abounds too much in our Numidian wiles. Sy. I know it well.
Sy. Indeed, my prince, you want to know Jub, Cato thinks meanly of me.
the world. Sy. And so will all mankind.
| You have not read mankind; your youth ad Jub. I've open'd to bim
mires The weakness of my soul, my love for Marcia. The throes and swellings of a Roman soul, Sy. Cato's a proper person to intrust
Cato's bold Aights, th' extravagance of virtuc. A love-tale with!
Jul. If knowledge of the world makes man Jub. O, I could pierce my heart,
perfidious, My foolish heart. Was ever wretch like Juba ? | May Juba ever live in ignorance ! Sy. Alas, my prince, how are you chang'd of Sy: Go, go; you're young: late!
Jub. Gods, must I tamely bear I've known young Juba rise before the sun, This arrogance unanswer'd: Thou 'rt a traitor, To beat the thicket where the tiger slept, A false old traitor. Or seek the lion in his dreadful haunts:
Sy. I have gone too far.
[Aside. How did the color mount into your cheeks, Jub. Cato shall know the baseness of thy soul. When first you rous'd him to the chase! I've Sy. I must appease this storm, or perish in it. seen you,
Young prince, behold these locks, that are | Alas! I've hitherto been us'd to think grown white
A blind officious acal to serve my king Beneath a helmet in your father's battles. The ruling principle, that ought to burn Jub. Those locks shall ne'er protect thy in. And quench all others in a subject's heart. solence.
| Happy the people who preserve their honor Sy. Must one rash word, th’ infirmity of By the same duties that oblige their prince ! age,
Jul. Syphax, thou now beginn'st to speak Throw down the merit of my better years? I thyself. This the reward of a whole life of service! | Numidia's grown a scorn among the nations, -Curse on the boy, how steadily he hears me! | For breach of public vows. Our Punic faith
[Aside. Is infamous, and branded to a proverb. Jub. Is it because the throne of my forefa Syphax, we'll join our cares, to purge away thers
Our country's crimes, and clear her reputation. Still stands unfilld, and that Numidia's crown Sy. Believe me,prince,you makeold Syphax Hangs doubtful yet whose head it shall enclose,
weep Thou thus presum'st to treat thy prince with To hear you talk-but 'tis with tears of joy. scorn?
If e'er your father's crown adorn your brows, Sy. Why will you rive my heart with such Numidia will be blest by Cato's lectures. expressions ?
Jub. Syphax, thy hand; we'll mutually Does not old Syphax follow you to war?
forget What are his aims? Why does he load with The warmth of youth, and frowardness of age : darts
Thy prince esteems thy worth, and loves thy His trembling hand, and crush beneath a casque person. His wrinkled brows? What is it he aspires to? If e'er the sceptre comes into my hand, Is it not this ; to shed the slow remains Syphax shall stand the second in my kingdom. His last poor ebb of blood in your defence? Sy. Why will you overwhelm my age with Jub. Syphax, no more: I would not hear you kindness : talk.
Myjoy grows burthensome, I shan't support it. Sy. Not hear me talk! what, when my faith Jub. Syphax, farewell. I'll hence, and try to Juba,
to find My royal master's son, is call'd in question ? Some blest occasion that may set me right My prince may strike me dead, and I'll be In Cato's thoughts. I'd rather have that man dumb;
Approve my deeds, than worlds for my admiBut whilst I live I must not hold my tongue,
Exit. And languish out old age in his displeasure. Sy. Young men soon give, and soon forget Jub. Thou know'st the way too well into my affronts : heart.
Old age is slow in both-A false old traitor! I do believe thee loyal to thy prince.
These words, rash boy, may chance to cost thee Sy. What greater instance can I give? I've dear. offer'd
My heart had still some foolish fondness for To do an action which my soul abhors,
thee: And gain you whom you love at any price. But hence ! 'is gone : I give it to the winds : Jul. Was this thy motive? I've been too Cæsar, I am wholly thine. hasty.
Well, Cato's senate is resolv'd to wait
Sem. Syphax, we both were on the verge of Sy. You did indeed, my prince, you calla) I fate! me traitor;
Lucius declar'd for peace, and terms were offer'd Nay, further, threaten'd you'd complain to Cato. 1 To Cato, by a messenger from Cæsar. Of what, my prince, would you complain to Should they submit ere our designs are ripe, Cato
We both must perish in the common wreck, That Syphax loves you, and woald sacrifice Lost in the gen'ral undistinguish'd ruin. His life, nay more, his honor, in your service? Sy. But how stands Cato? Jkb. Syphax, I know thou lov'st me bu in- ' Sem. Thou hast seen mount Atlas : deed
While storms and tempests thunder on its Thy zeal for Juba carried thee too far.
brows, Honor's a sacred tie, the law of kings, And oceans break their billows at its feet, The noble mind's distinguishing perfection, It stands unmov'd, and glories in its height : That aids and strengthens virtue where it meets Such is that haughty man; his tow'ring sout, her,
'Midst all the shocks and injuries of fortune, And imitates ber actions where she is not : Rises superior, and looks down on Cæsas. It ought not to be sported with.
Sy. But what's this inessenger? Sy. By heavens,
Sem. I've practis'd with him, I'm ravish'd when you talk thus, though you And found a means to let the victor know chide me!
| That Syphax and Sempronius are his friends :
But let me now examine in my turn :
| Indulge me but in love, my other passions Is Juba fix'd ?
Shall rise and fall by virtue's nicest rules. Sy. Yes— but it is to Cato:
Por. When love's well-tim'd, 'tis not a fault I've tried the force of every reason on him,
to love. Sooth'd and caress'd; been angry, sooth'd again; The strong, the brave, the virtuous, and the Laid safety, life, and int'rest in his sight.
wise, But all are vain, he scorns them all for Cato. Sink in the soft captivity together. Sem. Come, 'tis no matter; we shall do I would not urge thee to dismiss thy passion, without him.
(I know 'twere vain), but to suppress its force, Hell make a pretty figure in a triumph, Till better times may make it look more graceAnd serve to trip before the victor's chariot. Syphax, I now may hope thou hast forsook Marc. Alas! thou talk'st like one who never Thy Juba's cause, and wishest Marcia mine.
felt Sy. May she be thine as fast as thou wouldst Th'impatient throbs and longings of a soul. have her!
That pants and reaches after distant good. Sem. Syphax, I love that woman ; though I A lover does not live by vulgar time: curse
Believe me, Portius, in my Lucia's absence Her and myself, yet, spite of me, I love her. Life hangs upon me, and becomes a burden;
Sy. Make Cato sure, and give up Utica, And yet, when I behold the charming maid, Cæsar will ne'er refuse thee such a trifle. I'm ten times more undone; while hope and But are thy troops prepar'd for a revolt ?
fear, Does the sedition catch from man to man, And grief, and rage, and love, rise up at once, And run among their ranks?
And with variety of pain distract me. Sem. All, all is ready.
Por. What can thy Portius do to give thee The factious leaders are our friends, that spread help? Murmurs and discontents among the soldiers; Marc. Portius, thou oft enjoy'st the fair one's They count their toilsome marches, long fa presence; tigues,
Then undertake my cause, and plead it to her Unusual fastings, and will bear no more With all'the strength and heat of eloquenee This medley of philosophy and war.
Fraternal love and friendship can inspire. Within an hour they'll storm the senate-house. Tell her thy brother languishes to death, Sy. Meanwhile I'll draw up my Numidian And fades away, and withers in his bloom; troops
That he forgets his sleep, and loathes his food; Within the square, to exercise their arms, That youth, and health, and war, are joyless to And, as I see occasion, favor thee.
him : I laugh to think how your unshaken Cato Describe his anxious days and restless nights, Will look aghast, while unforeseen destruction And all the torments that thou seest me sufPours in upon him thus from every side.
fer. So where our wide Numidian wastes extend, Por. Marcus, I beg thee, give me not an Sudden, th' impetuous hurricanes descend,
office Wheel through the air, in circling eddies play, That suits with me so ill. Thou know'st my Tear up the sands, and sweep whole plains temper. away.
Marc. Wilt thou behold me sinking in my The helpless traveller, with wild surprise,
woes, Sees the dry desert all around him rise, And wilt thou not reach out a friendly arm, And, smother'd in the dusty whirlwind, dies. To raise me from amidst this plunge of sor
Por. Marcus, thou ,canst not ask what I'd
refuse. ACT III.
But here, believe me, I've a thousand reasons Enter Marcus and Porlius.
Marc. I know thou'lt say my passion's out of
season, Marc. THANKS to my stars, I have not That Cato's great example and misfortimes rang'd about
Should both conspire to drive it from my • The wilds of life, ere I could find a friend :
thoughts. Nature first pointed out my Portius to me, But what's all this to one that loves like me? And early taught me, by her sacred force, O Portius, Portius, from my soul I wish To love thy person ere I knew thy merit, Thou didst but know thyself, what 'tis to love! Till what was instinct grew up into friendship. Then wouldst thou pity and assist thy brother. Por. Marcus, the friendships of the world Por. What should I do? If I disclose my are oft
passion, Confed'racies in vice, or leagues of pleasure; Our friendship's at an end ; if I conceal it, Ours has severest virtue for its basis,
The world will call me false to a friend and broAnd such a friendship ends not but with life.
[Aside. Marc. Portius, thou know'st my soul in all Marc. But see where Lucia, at her wonted its weakness,
... hour, Then prythee spare me on its tender side. Amid the cool of gon high marble arch,