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That I was never present on the place 1085
Of those encounters, where we might have try'd
Each other's force in camp or listed field:
And now am come to see of whoin such noise
Hath walk'd about, and each limb to survey,
If thy appearance answer loud report. 1090
Sams. The way to know were not to see but taste.
Har. Dost thou already single me? I thought Gyves and the mill had tam’d thee. O that fortune Had brought me to the field, where thou art fam’d To' have wrought such wonders with an ass's jaw; I should have forc'd thee soon wish other arms, 1096 Or left thy carcass where the ass lay thrown: So had the glory of prowess been recover'd To Palestine, won by a Philistine From the unforeskin'd race, of whom thou bear's The highest name for valiant acts; that honor Certain to have won by mortal duel from thee, I lose, prevented by thy eyes put out. (but do
Sams. Boast not of what thou woulds have done, What then thou wouldst, thou seest it in thy hand.
Har. To combat with a blind man I disdain, And thou hast need much washing to be touch'd.
Sams. Such usage as your honorable lords Afford me' assassinated and betray’d, Who durst not with their whole united powers 1110 In fight withstand me single and unarm’d, Nor in the house with chamber ambushes
CloseClose-banded durst attack me, no not sleeping,
Till they had hir'd a woman with their gold Breaking her marriage faith to circumvent me. 1115 Therefore without feign’d shifts let be assign’d Some narrow place inclos’d, where sight may give Or rather flight, no great advantage on me; (thee, Then put on all thy gorgeous arms, thy helmet And brigandine of brass, thy broad habergeon, 1120 Vant-brass and greves, and gauntlet, add thy spear, A weaver's beam, and seven-times-folded shield, I only with an oaken-staff will meet thee, And raise such outcries on thy clatter'd iron, 1124 Which long shall not withhold me from thy head, That in a little time while breath remains thee, Thou oft shalt wish thyself at Gath to boast Again in safety what thou wouldn have done To Samson, but shalt never see Gath more.
Har. Thou durft not thus disparage glorious arms, Which greatest heroes have in battel worn, 1131 Their ornament and safety, had not spells And black inchantments, some magician's art, Arm’d thee or charm’d thee frong, which thou
from Heaven Feign’dst at thy birth was giv’n thee in thy hair, 1135 Where strength can least abide, though all thy hairs Were bristles rang'd like those that ridge the back Of chaf'd wild boars, or ruffled porcupines. Sams. I know no spells, use no forbidden arts;
My trust is in the living God, who gave me 1140
At my nativity this strength, diffus'd
No less through all my finews, joints and bones,
Than thine, while I preserv’d these locks unshorn,
The pledge of my unviolated vow.
For proof hereof, if Dagon be thy God, 1145
Go to his temple invocate his aid
With solemnest devotion, spread before him
How highly it concerns his glory now
To frustrate and dissolve these magic spells,
Which I to be the power of Israel's God 1150
Avow, and challenge Dagon to the tel,
Offering to combat thee his champion bold,
With th' utmost of his Godhead seconded:
Then thou shalt see, or rather to thy sorrow 1154
Soon feel, whose God is strongest, thine or mine.
Har. Presume not on thy God, whate’er he be,
Thee he regards not, owns not, hath cut off
Quite from his people, and deliver'd up
Into thy enemies hand, permitted them
To put out both thine eyes, and fetter'd send thee
Into the common prison, there to grind 1161
Among the slaves and asses thy comrades,
As good for nothing else, no better service
With those thy boist’rous locks, no worthy match
For valor to assail, nor by the sword 1165
Of noble warrior, so to stain his honor,
But by the barber's razor best subdued.
Sams. All these indignities, for such they are
From thine, these evils I deserve and more,
Acknowledge them from God inflicted on me 1170
Justly, yet despair not of his final pardon
Whose ear is ever open, and his eye
Gracious to re-admit the suppliant;
In confidence whereof I once again
Defy thee to the tryal of mortal fight, 1175
By combat to decide whose God is God,
Thine or whom I with Israel's sons adore.
Har. Fair honor that thou dost thy God, in trusting
He will accept thee to defend his cause, .1179
A Murderer, a Revolter, and a Robber. (me these?
Sams. Tongue-doughty Giant, how dost thou prove
Har. Is not thy nation subject to our lords ?
Their magistrates confess’d it, when they took thee
As a league-breaker and deliver'd bound
Into our hands: for hadst thou not committed 1185
Notorious murder on those thirty men
At Ascalon, who never did thee harm,
Then like a robber stripp’dst them of their robes ?
The Philistines, when thou hadh broke the league,
Went up with armed pow'rs thee only seeking, 1190
To others did no violence nor spoil.
Sams. Among the daughters of the Philistines
I chose a wife, which argued me no foe;
And in your city held my nuptial feast:
But your ill-meaning politician lords, 1195
Under pretence of bridal friends and guests,
Appointed to await me thirty spies,
Who threatning cruel death constrain’d the bride
To wring from me and tell to them my secret,
That solv'd the riddle which I had propos’d. 1200
When I perceiv'd all set on enmity,
As on my enemies, wherever chanc'd,
I us'd hostility, and took their spoil
To pay my underminers in their coin.
My nation was subjected to your lords. 1205
It was the force of conquest; force with force
Is well ejected when the conquer'd can.
But I a private person, whom my country
As a league-breaker gave up bound, presum’d
Single rebellion and did hostile acts.
I was no private but a person rais'd
With strength sufficient and command from Heav'n
To free my country; if their servile minds
Me their deliverer fent would not receive,
But to their masters gave me up for nought, 1215
Th’unworthier they; whence to this day they serve.
I was to do my part from Heav'n assign'd,
And had perform'd it, if mine known offense
Had not disabled me, not all your force:
These shifts refuted, answer thy appellant 1220
Though by his blindness maim'd for high attempts,
Who now defies thee thrice to single fight,
As a petty enterprise of small enforce.