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Bal. Surely he is a god!
So wilt thou, I trust. Myr.
So we Greeks deem too; Sal. I fain would live this hour out, and the event, And yet I sometimes think that gorgeous orb But doubt it. Wherefore did ye bear me here? Must rather be the abode of gods than one
Sol. By the king's order. When the javelin struck Of the immortal sovereigas. Now he breaks
you, Through all the clouds, and fills my eyes with light You fell and fainted : 't was his strict command That shuts the world out. I can look no more. To bear you to this hall. Bal. Hark! heard you not a sound?
'T was not ill done: Myr.
No, 'twas mere fancy: For, seeming slain in that cold dizzy trance, They battle it beyond the wall, and not,
The sight might shake our soldiers—but-'t is vain, As in late midnight conflict, in the very
I feel it ebbing! Chambers: the palace has become a fortress
Let me see the wound; Since that insidious hour; and here, within I am not quite skilless : in my native land The very centre, girded by vast courts
'T is part of our instruction. War being constant, And regal halls of pyramid proportions,
We are nerved to look on such things. (1) Which must be carried one by one before
Best extract They penetrate to where they then arrived, The javelin. We are as much shut in even from the sound
Myr. Hold ! no, no, it cannot be.
Sal. I am sped, then!
Myr. With the blood that fast must follow Thus far before.
The extracted weapon, I do fear thy life. Myr.
Yes, by surprise, and were Sal. And I not death. Where was the king when Beat back by valour: now at once we have
you Courage and vigilance to guard us.
Convey'd me from the spot where I was stricken ? Bal.
May they Sol. Upon the same ground, and encouraging Prosper!
With voice and gesture the dispirited troops Myr. That is the prayer of many, and
Who had seen you fall, and falter'd back. The dread of more: it is an anxious hour;
Whom heard you I strive to keep it from my thoughts. Alas! Named next to the command ? How vainly!
I did not hear. Bal. It is said the king's demeanour
Sal. Fly, then, and tell him, 't was my last request In the late action scarcely more appallid
That Zames take my post until the junction,
Salrap of Susa. Leave me here: our troops The vulgar mass which moulds a horde of slaves; Are not so numerous as to spare your absence. But he did bravely.
Sol. But, prince--
Sal. Hence, I say! Here's a courtier and I heard the soldiers say he struck him down. A woman, the best chamber company.
Myr. The wretch was over hrown, but rescued 10 As you would not permit me to expire Triumph, perhaps, o'er one who vanquish'd hiin Upon the field, I 'll have no idle soldiers lo fight, as he had spared him in his peril; About my sick couch. Hence! and do my bidding! And by that heedless pity risk'd a crown.
[Exeunt the Soldiers. Bal. Hark!
Myr. Gallant and glorious spirit! must the earth Myr. You are right; some steps approach, but So soon resign thee ? slowly.
Gentle Myrrha, it is
The end I would have chosen, had I saved Enter Soldiers, bearing in SALEMENES wounded, The monarch or the monarchy by this;
with a broken Javelin in his side: they seat As 't is, I have not outlived them. him upon one of the Couches which furnish Myr.
You wax paler. the Apartment.
Sal. Your hand; this broken weapon but prolongs
My pangs, without sustaining life enough
To make me useful ; I would draw it forth
And my life with it, could I but hear how
That is false.
The fight goes. Hew down the slave who says so, if a soldier.
Myr. Spare him-he's none: a mere court butThat flutters in the pageant of a monarch. [terfly,
(1) In the MS.Sal. Let him live on, then.
“ We are used to such inflictions."-E.
Enter SARDANAPALUS and Soldiers.
Sar. Well, Pania! have you placed the guards, Sar. My best brother!
and issued Sal.
And the battle
The orders fix'd on? Is lost?
Sire, I have obey'd. Sar.(despondingly.) You see me here. Sal. I'd rather see you thus ! Sar. And do the soldiers keep their hearts up? Pan.
Sire? [He draws out the weapon from the wound, and dies.
Sar. I'm answer'd! When a king asks twice, and
[has Sar. And thus I will be seen ; unless the succour, A question as an answer to his question, The last frail reed of our beleaguer'd hopes, It is a portent. What! they are dishearten'd? Arrive with Ofratanes.
Pan. The death of Salemenes, and the shouts Myr. Did
Of the exulting rebels on his fall,
Have made themReceive a token from your dying brother,
Sar. Appointing Zames chief?
Rage—not droop-it should have been.
We'll find the means to rouse them.
Such a loss
Might sadden even a victory.
Who can so feel it as I feel? but yet,
Pania ? Sfero? Though coop'd within these walls, they are strong, and we
[hosts, Sar. Pania yet lives; but Sfero's fled or captive.
Have those without will break their way through I am alone.
To make their sovereign's dwelling what it was— Myr.
And is all lost? Sar.
A palace; not a prison, nor a fortress.
Enter an Officer, hastily.
Sar. Thy face seems ominous. Speak!
I dare not. Of Salemenes not to risk a sally
Dare not? Till ye were strengthen’d by the expected succours. While millions dare revolt with sword in hand! Sar. I over-ruled him.
That's strange. I pray thee break that loyal silence Myr.
Well, the fault's a brave one. Which loathes to shock its sovereign; we can hear Sar. But fatal. Oh, my brother! I would give
Worse than thou hast to tell. These realms, of which thou wert the ornament,
Proceed, thou hearest. The sword and shield, the sole-redeeming honour,
offi. The wall which skirted near the river's briok To call back -But I will not weep for thee;
Is thrown down by the sudden inundation Thou shalt be mourn’d for as thou wouldst be of the Euphrates, which now rolling, swoln mourn'd.
From the enormous mountains where it rises, It grieves me most that thou couldst quit this life
By the late rains of that tempestuous region, Believing that I could survive what thou
O'erfloods its banks, and hath destroy'd the bulwark. Hast died for-our long royally of race.
Pan. That's a black augury! it has been said If I redeem it, I will give thee blood
For ages, “That the city ne’er should yield Of thousands, tears of millions, for atonement
κι Το man, until the river grew its foe." (The tears of all the good are thine already).
Sar. I can forgive the omen, not the ravage. If not, we meet again soon,-if the spirit
How much is swept down of the wall ? Wiihin us lives beyond :-thou readest mine,
About And dost me justice now. Let me once clasp
Some twenty stadii.(1) That yet warm hand, and fold ihat throbless heart
And all this is left - [Embraces the body. Pervious to the assailants ? To this, which beats so bitterly. Now, bear
For the present The body hence.
The river's fury must impede the assault; Soldier. Where?
But when he shrinks into his wonted channei, Sar.
To my proper chamber. And may be cross’d by the accustom'd barks, Place it beneath my canopy, as though
The palace is their own. The king lay there: when this is done, we will
That shall be never. Speak further of the rites due to such ashes.
| Exeunt Soldiers with the body of SALEMENES. (1) About two miles and a half.
and gods, and elements, and omens, My worthy Pania! further ties between us Have risen up'gainst one who ne'er provoked them, Draw near a close, I pray you take this key: My father's house shall never be a cave
[Gives a key. For wolves to horde and howl in.
It opens to a secret chamber, placed Pan.
With your sanction, Behind the couch in my own chamber. (Now I will proceed to the spot, and take such measures Press’d by a nobler weight than e'er it boreFor the assurance of the vacant space
Though a long line of sovereigns have lain down As time and means permit.
Along its golden frame—as bearing for Sar.
About it straight; A time what late was Salemenes.) Search And bring me back, as speedily as full
The secret covert to which this will lead you; And fair investigation may permit,
’T is full of treasure;(2) lake it for yourself Report of the true state of this irruption
And your companions: there's enough to load ye, Of waters. [Exeunt Pania and the officer. Though ye be many.(3) Let the slaves be freed, too; Myr. Thus the very waves rise up
And all the inmates of the palace, of Against you.
Whatever sex, now quit it in an hour. Sar. They are not my subjects, girl, Thence launch the regal barks, once form’d for pleaAnd may be pardond, since they can't be punish’d. And now to serve for safety, and embark. [sure,
Myr. I joy to see this portent shakes you not. The river's broad and swoln, and uncommanded
Sur. I am past the fear of portents; they can tell (More potent than a king) by these besiegers.
Under your protection! Myr.
So you accompany your faithful guard.
'Tis the first time Word than this is to give it utterance.
I ever disobey'd: but now But what are words to us ? we have well nigh done Sar.
So all men With them and all things.
Dare beard me now, and Insolence within Myr.
Save one deed—the last Apes Treason from without! Question no further; Aud greatest to all mortals; crowning act
'T is my command, my last command. Wilt thou Of all that was—or ismor is to be
Oppose it a thou! The only thing common to all mankind,
But yet-not yet. So different in their births, tongues, sexes, natures, Sar.
Well, then, Hues, features, climes, times, feelings, intellecis,(1) Swear that you will obey when I shall give Without one point of union save in this,
The signal. To which we tend, for which we're born, and thread
Pan. With a heavy but true heart, The labyrinth of mystery, call'd life.
I promise. Sar. Our clew being well nigh wound out, let's Sar. 'T is enough. Now order here be cheerful.
Faggots, pine-nuts, and wither'd leaves, and such (4) They who have nothing more to fear may well Things as catch fire and blaze with one sole sp k; Indulge a smile at that which once appallid; Bring cedar, too, and precious drugs, and spices, As children at discover'd bugbears.
And mighty planks, to nourish a tall pile;
Bring frankincense and myrrh, too, for it is
For a great sacrifice I build the pyre;
And heap them round yon throne.
I have said it, Where it was strongest the required addition, And you have sworn. To watch the breach occasion'd by the waters.
And could keep my faith Sar. You have done your duty faithfully; and as, Without a vow.
(1) In the MS.
“ Complexions, climes, eras, und intellects."-E.
(?) " Athenæus makes these treasures amount to a thousand myriads of talents of gold, and ten times as many talents of silver, which is a sum that exceeds all credibility. A man is lost if he allempts to sum up the whole value; which induces me to believe that Athenæus must have very much exaggerated; however, we
may be assured, from his account, that the treasures were im-
“ Ye will find the crevice
"Now order bere Enough of dry wood," etc.-E.
Incurr’d by my obedience.
So there are
As sovereigns swalhed in purple, and enthroned PANIA, returning with a Herald.
From birth to manhood! Pan. My king, in going forth upon my duty,
My life waits your breath This herald has been brought before me, craving
Yours (I speak humbly)—but it may be-yours An audience.
May also be in danger scarce less imminent: Sar. Let him speak.
Would it then suit the last hours of a line
The King ARBACES. Such as is that of Nimrod, to destroy
Beleses, And violate not only all that man
Holds sacred between man and man—but that Sar.
Of what god or demon ? More holy tie which links us with the gods ? With new kings rise new altars. But proceed; Sar. He's right.-Let him go free.- My life's last You are sent to prate your master's will, and not Shall not be one of wrath. Here, fellow, take (act Reply to mine.
[Gives him a golden cup from a table near. Her. And Satrap Ofratanes
This golden goblet, let it hold your wine, Sar. Why, he is ours.
And think of me; or melt it into ingols, Her. (showing a ring.) Be sure that he is now
And think of nothing but their weight and value. In the camp of the conquerors; behold
Her. I thank you doubly, for my life and this His signet-ring
Most gorgeous gift, which renders it more precious. Sar. 'T is his. A worthy triad!
But must I bear no answer ? Poor Salemenes ! thou hast died in lime
Yes, I ask To see one treachery the less: this man
An hour's truce to consider. Was ihy true friend and my most trusted subject.
But an hour's ? Proceed.
Sar. An hour's: if at the expiration of Her. They offer thee thy life, and freedom
That time your masters hear no further from me, Of choice to single out a residence In any of the further provinces,
They are lo deem that I reject their terms,
And act befittingly.
I shall not fail
To be a faithful legate of your pleasure.
Sar. And hark! a word more.
I shall not forget it,
Whale'er it be.
Commeud me to Beleses;
Answer, slave! How long Have slaves decided on the doom of kings?
And tell him, ere a year expire, I summon
Him hence to meet me.
At Babylon. Of treason, though its proxy only. Pania!
At least from thence he will depart to meet me. Let his head be thrown from our walls within
Her. I shall obey you to the letter. (Exit Herald.
Now, my good Pania!-quick-with what I order'd. (Pania and the Guards seizing him.
Pan. My lord, -the soldiers are already charged. Pan. I never yet obey'd
And see! they enter. Your orders with more pleasure than the present.
[Soldiers enter, and form a Pile about the Hence with him, soldiers ! do not soil this hall
Throne, etc. Of royalty with treasonable gore;
Higher, my good soldiers, Put him to rest without.
And thicker yet; and see that the foundation
Be such as will not speedily exhaust
Its own too subtle flame: nor yet be quenchid Sar.
And what's mine? With aught officious aid would bring to quell it. That thou shouldst come and dare to ask of me Let the throne form the core of it; I would not To lay it down?
Leave that, save fraught with fire unquenchable, Her. I but obey'd my orders,
To the new-comers. Frame the whole as if At the same peril, if refused, as now
'T were to enkindle the strong tower of our
Jovelerate enemies. Now it bears an aspect! There be: I shall know soon. Farewell-Farewell. How say you, Pania, will this pile suffice
[Exeunt PANIA and Soldiers. For a king's obsequies?
Myr. These men were honest : it is comfort still Pan.
Ay, for a kingdom's. That our last look should be on loving faces. I understand you, now.
Sar. And lovely ones, my beautiful !-but hear Sar. And blame me?
If at this moment,-for we now are on Pan.
No The brink,-lhou feel'st an inward shrinking from
I shall not lore Thee less; nay, perhaps more,
For yielding to thy nature: and there's time
'T is the soldier's Yet for thee to escape hence. Part to die for his sovereign, and why not
Shall I light The woman's with her lover ?
One of the lorches which lie heap'd beneath
'T is most strange! The ever-burning lamp that burns without,
Thou shall see. Pan. I should shame to leave my sovereign
[Exit MYRRUA. With but a single female to partake
Sar. (solus.) She's firm. My fathers ! whom I will His death.
rejoin, Sar. Too many far have heralded
It may be, purified by death from some Me to the dust already. Get thee hence;
Of the gross stains of too material being, Enrich thee.
I would not leave your ancient first abode Pan, And live wretched !
To the detilement of usurping bondmen; Sar.
Think upon If I have not kept your inheritance Thy vow:-'t is sacred and irrevocable.
As ye bequeath'd it, this bright part of it, Pan. Since it is so, farewell.
Your treasure, your abode, your sacred relics Sar.
Search well my chamber, Of arms, and records, monuments, and spoils Feel no remorse at bearing off the gold;
In which they would have revell’d, I bear with me Remember, what you leave you leave the slaves To you in that absorbing element Who slew me: and when you have borne away Which most personifies the soul, as leaving All safe off to your boals, blow one long blast The least of matter unconsumed before Upon the trumpet as you quit the palace.
Its fiery workings:-and the light of this The river's brink is too remote, ils stream
Most royal of funereal pyres shall be Too loud at present, to permit the echo
Not a mere pillar form’d of cloud and flame, To reach distincıly from its banks. Then fly, A beacon in the horizon for a day, Ind as you sail, turn back; but still keep on And then a mount of ashes, but a light Your way along the Euphrates: if you reach To lesson ages, rebel nations, and The land of Paphlagonia, where the queen Voluptuous princes. Time shall quench full many Is safe with my three sons in Colla’s court, A people's records, and a hero's acts; Say, what you saw at parting, and request Sweep empire after empire, like this first That she remember what I said at one
Of empires, into nothing; but even then Parting more mournful still.
Shall spare this deed of mine, and hold it up San.
That royal hand! A problem few dare imitate, and none Let me then once more press it to my lips; Despise-but, it may be, avoid the life And these poor soldiers who throng round you, and / Which led to such a consummation. Would fain die with you! (The Soldiers and Pania throng round him, MYRRMA returns with a lighted Tocrh in one kissing his hand and the hem of his robe.
Hand and a Cup in the other. Sar.
My best! my last friends! Lit's not unman each other: part at once :
Sar. And the cup?
'Tis my country's custom to Hence, and be happy: trust me, I am not
Make a libation to the gods. Now to be pitied; or far more for what
And mine Is past than present;—for the future, 'l is
To make libations amongst men. I've not In the hands of the deities, if such
Forgot the custom; and, although alone,