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..Thus stood I baliano'd equally precise,
“ Witness the world, wherein is nothing rifer,
Written in clouds of our concealed doom?
Which though perhaps have been reveal'd to some,
" I saw the sin wherein my foot was ent'ring; 36 Whereat my wretchless youth stooping to store me, I saw how that dishonour did attend it ;
Lost me the goal, the glory, and the day.” I saw the shame whereon my flesh was vent'ring,
So weak is sense, when errour hath condemn'd it.
We see what's good, and thereto we consent;
But yet we choose the worst, and soon repent.
“ And now I come to tell the worst of illness; »
Now draws the date of mine affliction near.
And dreadful black had dispossess'd the clear, 37. With costly jewels (orators of love)
Com'd was the Night (inother of Sleep and Fear) -
Who with her sable mantle friendly covers
The sweet stoll'n sport of joyiul meeting lovers.
“When, lo! I joy'd my lover, not my love,
And felt the hand of lust most undesir'd;
Which yields no natural pleasure when 't is hird ;
Love's not constrain'd, nor yet of due requir'd:
Judge they who are unfortunately wed, 440
What 't is to come unto a loathed bed. “ Amymone, old Danaus' fairest daughter, 890 As she was fetching water all alone
“ But soon his age receiv'd his short contenting,
When he turns to his rest, I to repenting,
Por first we taste the fruit, then see our sin.
From those pure fields of my so clean beginning: 4.50 la act so pitious to express despair.
Now I perceiv'd how ill I was advis'd, 390 And by bow much more grieved, so much more fair
. My filesh gan loath the new-felt touch of simning
But use of sin doth make it seem as nothing.
And love in him incorporates such zeal,
Fearing to loose the joy of all his weal,
Or doubting time his stealth might clse reveal, 460
“ A stately palace he forthwith did build,
Whose intricate innumerable ways,
With such confused errours, so beguil'd
Th' unguided ent'rers with uncertain strays,
And doubtful turnings kept them in delays;
With bootless labour leading them about,
Able to find no way, nor in, nor out.
“ Within the closed bosom of which frame, 470 L! D And others' harms have made me shun mine own; That serv'd a centre to that goodly round,
But fate is not prevented, thongh foreknown: Were lodgings, with a garden to the same,
With sweetest flowers that eler adorn'd the ground,
And all the pleasures that delight hath found
Tentertain the sense of wanton eyes,
If I unluckily had never stray'd,
The monster of Fortune, and the world's wonder, She's deck'd with truth; the river, where she drinks, 480 Liv'd cloist'red in so desolate a case :
Doth serve her for her glass; her counsel-giver None but the king might come into the place, She loves sincerely, and is loved ever. With certain maids that did attend my need, Her days are peace, and so she ends her breath, And he himself came guided by a thread. (True life that knows not what 's to die till death.)
In the black book of the unfortunate;
Which bought their pleasures at so high a rate:55D
No walls can hide us from the eye of Heaven;
Por shame must end what wickedness begun; Envious observer, prying in every part;
Forth breaks reproach when we least think thereon ; Suspicious o would to God that love could be without thee. That nothing
can be done, but Fame reports. 560 “Thou did'st deprive (through false suggesting fear) “ Fame doth explore what lies most secret hidden, Him of content, and me of liberty,
Ent'ring the closet of the palace-dweller; SOO The only good that women hold so dear,
Abroad revealing what is most forbidden: And turn'st my freedom to captivity,
Of truth and falsehood both an equal teller, First made a prisoner ere an enemy:
"T is not a guard can serve for to expell her: Enjoin'd the ransom of my body's shame,
The sword of justice cannot cut her wings, Which though I paid, could not redeem the same. Nor stop her mouth from uttering secret things. " What greater torment ever could bave been,
" And this our stealth she could not long conceal, Than to enforce the fair to live retir'd ?
From her whom such a forfeit most concern'd, For what is beauty if it be not seen?
The wronged queen, who could so closely deal, 570 Or what is 't to be seen, if not admir'd?
That she the whole of all our practice learn'd, And though admir'd, unless in love desir'd ?
And watch'd a time when least it was discero'd, Sio , , In absence of the king, to wreak her wrong, Ordain'd to live imprison'd in a chamber.
With such revenge as she desired long. “ Nature created beauty for the view,
“ The labyrinth she enter'd by that thread, (Like as the fire for heat, the Sun for light:) That serv'd a conduct to my absent lord; The fair do hold this privilege as due,
Left there by chance, reserv'd for such a deed, By ancient charter, to live most in sight,
Where she surpris'd me whom she so abhor'd : And she that is debarr'd it, hath not right.
Enrag'd with madness, scarce she speaks a word, In vain our friends from this do us dehort, But dies with eager fury to my face, 580 For beauty will be where is most resort.
Offering me most unwomanly disgrace. “ Witness the fairest streets that Thames doth visit, “ Look how a tigress that hath lost her whelp, 520 The wondrous concourse of the glittring fair
;. Runs fiercely ranging through the woods astray; For what rare woman, deck'd with beauty, is it,
And seeing herself deprivd of hope or help, That thither covets not to make repair ?
Furiously assaults what 's in her way,
To satisfy her wrath (not for a prey);
So fell she on me in outrageous wise,
As could disdain and jealousy devise. “ Here doth the curious, with judicial eyes, " Contemplate beauty gloriously attir'd: She forc'd me take the poison she had brought, 590 And herein all our chiefest glory lies,
To end the life that had her so abus'd, To live where we are prais'd and most desir'd. And free her fears, and ease her jealous thought; 5370! how we joy to see ourselves admir'd, No cruelty her wrath could leave unwrought;
Whilst niggardly our favours we discover; * No spiteful act that to revenge is common ;
Your love-sick heart, that overcharg'd hath been And live in pomp to brave among the best: With pleasure's surfeit, must be purg'd with art; Happy for me, better had I been blessid,
This potion hath a power that will convert boo
To ngught those humours that oppress you so;
And let thy heart pity thy heart's remorse,
And be thyself the mourner and the corse.
And now from friends, from succour hither led, 670
Art made a spoil to lust, to wrath, to death,
And in disgrace, forc'd here to yield thy breath. 610
“ Hlaving this bloody doom from hellish breath, « « Did Nature (for this good) ingeniate,
To show in thee the glory of her best;
Making thy face the foe to spoil the rest ?
O beauty! thou an enemy profess'd
To chastity, and us that love thee most,
Glitter in court, lov'd and observ'd of duty; 620 Must now receive destruction in thereat ; Would God I might to you but ere I go That body which my lust did violate,
Speak what I feel, to warn you by my woe,
To keep your feet in cleanly paths of shame,
Seeing how 'gainst your tender weakness still,
The strength of wit, and gold, and all is bent;
And all th' assaults that ever might or skill
Ah! let not greatness work you to consent.
The spot is foul, though by a monarch made, 630 Oh, poor weak conquest both for him and her! Kings cannot privilege what God forbade.
XC “ Then straight my conscience summons up my sin
« • Lock up therefore the treasure of your love,
Under the surest keys of fear and shame: -
And let no powers have power chaste thoughts to
To make a lawless entry on your fame. [move
Open to those the comfort of your flame, ”
Whose equal love shall march with equal pace,
Our own aspiring or our parents' pride
Wealth and not love, honour and nought beside: –
« « Or whilst we spend the freshest of our time,
The sweets of youth inplotting in the air;
Or whither as unprofitably fair,
Whilst those decays which are without repair, 659* Is this thy glory got, to die forlorn
Make us neglected, scorned, and reprov'd. lo deserts where no ear can hear thee mourn (And 0, what are we, if we be not lov’d?) “ Nor any eye of pity to behold'
“• Fasten therefore upon occasions fit,
Lest this, or that, or like disgrace as mine,
And cloud with infamy your beauty's shine:
Seeing how many seek to undermine
The treasury that 's unpossessid of any;
“ “Yet breathe out to these walls the breath of moan, “ • And Ay (О fy!) these bed-brokers unclean, Obor Tell th' air thy plaints, since men thou canst not tell.-(The monsters of our sex) that make a prey And though thou perish desolate alone,
Of their own kind, by an unkindly mean ;
In those pure ways that lead to no disgrace. You
Live by the death of fame, the gain of sin, “ Amaz'd he stands, nor voice nor body stirs;
Words had no passage, tears no issue found,
For sorrow shut up words, wrath kept in tears;
Striving to tell his woes, words would not come;
-719 > Traitors unto ourselves, to join with those;
For light cares speak, when mighty griefs are dumb.
'Through which, th' imprisoned voice with tears at
With arms across, and eyes to Heaven bended,
Vapouring out sighs that to the skies ascended ;- Factors for darkness, messengers of night,
Sighs (the poor ease calamity affords)
Which serve for speech, when sorrow wanteth words.
The hateful rays of this unbappy Sup?
Why have I light to see my sins control'd, *«• You in the habit of a grave aspect,
With blood of mine own sbame thus wildly done? (In credit by the trust of years) can show
How can my sight endure to look thereon ?
Why doth not black eternal darkness hide
That from inine eyes, my heart cannot abide ?
“What saw my life wherein my soul might joy? And in uncleanness ever have been fed,
What had my days, whom troubles still afflicted, By the revenue of a wanton bed :
But only this, to counterpoise annoy?
This joy, this hope, which death hath interdicted ; "' By you have been the innocent betray'd,
This sweet, whose loss hath all distress inflicted ; -817
This, that did season all my sour of life,
Vex'd still at home with broils, abroad in strife.
« • Vex'd still at home with broils, abroad in strife, Confus'd our race, and falsify'd our blood,
Dissention in my blood, jars in my bed ;
Distrust.at board, suspecting still my life,
Spending the night in horrour, days ia dread;
These miseries go mask'd in glittering shows,
Which wise men see, the vulgar little knows.'
* Thus, as these passions do him overwhelm, 820 Though I could wish (by the example of my will)
He draws bim near my body to bebold it;
And as the vine married unto the elm,
With strict embraces, so doth he infold it :
And as he in his careful arms doth bold it,
Viewing tbe face that even death commends,
O be it lawful now, that dead thou hav'st,
Motives of love, born to be matched never,
Entomb’d in your sweet circles, sleep for ever. -
“Ah! how methinks I see Death dallying seeks » T encounter with the same upon the way,
To entertain itself in Love's sweet place;
Decayed roses of discolour'd cheeks,
Do yet retain dear notes of former grace:
And ugly Death sits fair withių her face;
Sweet remnants resting of vermilion red,
That Death itself doubts whether she be dead. 50 “ Judge those whom chance deprives of sweetest treasure,
"" Wonder of beauty, ob! receive these plaints, – What 't is to lose a thing we hold so dear!
These obsequies, the last that I shall make thee : C'The best delight wherein our soul takes pleasure, Por lo, my soal that now already faints, The sweet of life, that penetrates so near.
(That lov & thee living, dead will not forsake thee)
I'll meet my death, and free myself thereby,
er Yet, ere I die, thus much my soul doth vow,
Revenge shall sweeten death with ease of mind : 85 And I will cause posterity shall know,
OCTAVIA TO MARCUS ANTONIUS.
“ This said, though more desirous yet to say,
THE RIGHT HONOURABLE AND MOST VIRTUOUS LADY,
THE LADY MARGARET,
COUNTESS OF CUMBERLAND.
ALThough the meaner sort (whose thoughts are " Then were my funerals not long deferred, As in another region, far below [plac'd, But done with all the rites pomp could devise,
The sphere of greatness) cannot rightly taste
What touch it hath, nor right her passions know:
Yet have I bere adventur'd to bestow
Words upon grief, as my griefs comprehend,
And made this great afflicted lady show, " For those walls, which the credulous devout
Out of my feelings, what she might have pennid: 870 And apt-believing ignorant did found;
And here the same, I bring forth to attend
Upou thy reverend name, to live with thee
Most virtuous lady, that vouchsaf'st to lend
That one day may thine own fair virtues spread, “ And were it not thy favourable lines
Being secretary now but to the dead.
THE ARGUMENT. 710 Few in this age had known my beauty's praise.*
But thus renew'd, my fame redeems some time, Upon the second agreement (the first being broken
through jealousy of a disproportion of eminency)
between the triumviri Octavius Cæsar, Marcus An“ Then when confusion in her course shall bring tonius, and Lepidus; Octavia, the sister of Octavius Sad desolation on the times to come :
Cæsar, was married to Antonius, as a link to comWhen mirthless Thames shall have no swan to sing, bine that which never yet, the greatest strength of All music silent, and the Muses dumb;
Nature, or any power of nearest respect, could long And yet even then it must be known to some,
hold together; who, made but the instrument of That once they flourish'd, though not cherish'd so, others' ends, and delivered up as an ostage, to And Thames had swans as well as ever Po. serve the opportunity of advantages, met not with
that integrity she brought; but as highly preferred 470" But here an end, I may no longer stay, to affliction, encountered with all the grievances I must return t'attend at Stygian flood :
that beat upon the misery of greatness, exposed to Yet, ere I go, this one word more I pray,
stand betwixt the diverse tending bumours of unTell Delia, now her sigh may do me good,
quiet parties: for Antony having yet upon him the And will her note the frailty of our blood.
fetters of Egypt, laid on by the power of a most And if I pass unto those happy banks,
incomparable beauty, could admit vo new laws Then she must have her praise, thy pen her thanks.” into the state of his affection, or dispose of himself,
being not himself; but as having his heart turned So vanish'd she, and left me to return
eastward, whither the point of his desires are diTo prosecute the terrour of my woes :
rected, touched with the strongest allurements Eternal matter for my Muse to mourn,
that ambition and a licentious sovereignty could But yet the world hath heard too much of those, draw a man unto, could not truly descend to the goo
My youth such errours must no more disclose. private love of a civil nurtred matron, whose en-
affections in any other colours than the plain