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Tam. King, be thy thoughts imperious, like thy


Is the sun dimm'd, that gnats do fly in it?
The eagle suffers little birds to sing,
And is not careful what they mean thereby;
Knowing, that with the shadow of his wings,
He can at pleasure 'stint their melody:
Even so may'st thou the giddy men of Rome. 520
Then cheer thy spirit: for know, thou emperor,
I will enchant the old Andronicus,
With words more sweet, and yet more dangerous,
Than baits to fish, or honey-stalks to sheep ;
When as the one is wounded with the bait,
The other rotted with delicious feed.

Sat. But he will not entreat his son for us.

Tam. If Tamora entreat him, then he will:
For I can smooth, and fill his aged ear
With golden promises ; that were his heart

Almost impregnable, his old ears deaf,
Yet should both ear and heart obey my tongue.-
Go thou before, be our ambassador: [To ÆMILIUS.
Say, that the emperor requests a parley
Of warlike Lucius, and appoint the meeting.

Sat. Æmilius, do this message honourably :
And if he stand on hostage for his safety,
Bid him demand what pledge will please him best.

Emil. Your bidding shall I do effećtually. (Exit.

Tam. Now will I to that old Andronicus; 540 And temper him with all the art I have, To pluck proud Lucius from the warlike Goths.


And now, sweet einperor, be blith again;
And bury all thy fear in my devices.
Sat. Then go successfully, and plead to him.

[ Exeunt.


The Camp, at a small Distance from Rome. Enter Lu.

CIUS and Goths, with Drum and Soldiers.

Lucius. Approved warriors, and my faithful friends, I have received letters from great Rome, Which signify, what hate they bear their emperor, And how desirous of our sight they are. Therefore, great lords, be, as your titles witness, Imperious, and impatient of your wrongs ; And, wherein Rome hath done you any, scath, Let him make treble satisfaction. Goth. Brave slip, sprung from the great Andro.

nicus, Whose name was once our terror, now, our comfort; Whose high exploits, and honourable deeds, Ingrateful Rome requites with foul contempt, Be bold in us : we'll follow where thou lead'st,Like stinging bees in hottest summer's day, Led by their master to the flower'd fields, And be aveng'd on cursed Tamora.




Omn. And, as he saith, so say we all with him.
Luc. I humbly thank him, and I thank you

all, But who comes here, led by a lusty Goth ?


Enter a Goth, leading AARON, with his Child in his

Arms, Goth. Renowned Lucius, from our troops I stray'd, To gaze upon a ruinous monastery; And as I earnestly did fix mine eye Upon the wasted building, suddenly I heard a child cry underneath a wall : I made unto the noise ; when soon I heard The crying babe controi'd with this discourse : Peace, tawny slave; half me, and half thy dam! Did not thy hue bewray whose brat thou art, Had nature lent thee but thy mother's look, Villain thou might'st have been an emperor:

30 But where the bull and cow are both milk-white, They never do beget a coal-black calf. Peace, villain, peace l-even thus he rates the babe,, For I must bear thee to & trusty Goth ; Who, when he knows thou art the emperess' babe, Will hold thee dearly for thy mother's sake. With this, my weapon drawn, I rush'd


him, Surpris'd' him suddenly; and brought him hither, To use as you think needful of the man.

Luc. O worthy Goth! this is the incarnate devil,
That robbid Andronicus of his good hand :
This is the pearl tňat pleas'd your emperess' eye ;
And here's the base fruit of his burning lust.

Say, wall-ey'd slave, whither would'st thou convey
This growing image of thy fiend-like face?
Why dost not speak ? What! deafs No! not a

word ?
A halter, soldiers ; hang him on this tree,
And by his side his fruit of bastardy.

Aar. Touch not the boy, he is of royal blood.
Luc. Too like the sire for ever being good.

First hang the child, that he may see it sprawl;
A sight to vex the father's soul withal.
Get me a ladder.

Aar. Lucius, save the child; And bear it from me to the emperess. If thou do this, I'll show thee wondrous things, That highly may advantage thee to hear : If thou wilt not, befall what may befall, I'll speak no more; But vengeance rot you all ! Luc. Say on; and, if it please me which thou speak'st,

Co Thy child shall live, and I will see it nourish'd. Aar. An if it please thee ? why, assure thee,

Lucius, "Twill vex thy soul to hear what I shall speak; For I must talk of murders, rapes, and massacres, Acts of black night, abominable deeds, Complots of mischief, treason; villanies Ruthful to hear, yet piteously perform'd: And this shall all be buried by my death, Unless thou swear to me, my child shall live.

69 Luc. Tell on thy mind; I say, thy child shall live.



Aar. Swear, that he shall, and then I will begin. Luc. Who should I swear by thou believ'st no

That granted, how can'st thou believe an oath ?

Aar. What if I do not i as, indeed, I do not:
Yet,-for I know thou art religious,
And hast a thing within thee, called conscience ;
With twenty popish tricks and ceremonies,
Which I have seen thee careful to observe,-
Therefore I urge thy oath ; -For that, I know,
An ideot holds his bauble for a god,

And keeps the oath, which by that god he swears ;
To that I'll urge him :-Therefore, thou shalt vow.
By that same god, what god soe'er it be,
That thou ador'st and hast in reverence,
To save my boy, nourish, and bring him up;
Or else I will discover nought to thee.

Luc. Even by my god, I swear to thee, I will.
Aar. First, know thou, I begot him on the em-

Luc. O most insatiate, luxurious woman!

Aar. Tut, Lucius! this was but a deed of charity, To that which thou shalt hear of me anon.

91 'Twas her two sons, that murder'd Bassianus: They cut thy sister's tongue, and ravish'd her, And cut her hands off ; and trimm'd her as thou

saw'st. .Luc. O, detestable villain ! call'st thou that trimming?


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