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النشر الإلكتروني

Wanting the scissars, with these hands I'll tear
(If that obstructs my fight) this load of hair :
Black soot or.yellow walnut shall disgrace
This little red and white of Emma's face:
These nails with scratches shall deform my breast,
Lest by my look or colour be express'd
The mark ofaughthigh-born,orever better dress'd.
Yet in this commerce, under this disguise,
Let me be grateful still to Henry's eyes;
Lost to the world, let me to him be known;
My fate I can absolve, if he shall own
That, leaving all mankind, I love but him alone.

Hen. O wildest thought of an abandon'd mind!
Name, habit, parents, woman, left behind,
Even honour dubious, thou preferr'st to go
Wild to the woods with me. Said Emma so?
Or did I dream what Emma never said ?
O guilty error! and O wretched maid !
Whose roving fancy would resolve the same
With him who next should tempt her easy fame,
And blow with empty words the susceptible flame.
Now why should doubtful terms thy mind perplex?
Confess thy frailty, and avow thy sex :
No longer loose desire for constant love
Mistake, but say, 'tis man with whom thou long'st

to rove. Emma. Are there not poisons, racks, and flames,

and swords, That Emma thus must die by Henry's words? Yet what could swords or poison, racks or flame, But mangle and disjoint. this brittle frame ! More fatal Henry's words, they murder Emma's

fame. And fall these sayings from that gentle tongue, Where civil speech and soft persuasion hung ? Whose artful sweetness and harmonious strain, Courting my grace, yet courting it in vain, Call'd sighs, and tears, and wishes, to its aid, And, whilst it Henry's glowing flame convey'd, Still blam'd the coldness of the Nut-brown Maid?



Let envious Jealousy and canker'd Spite
Produce my actions to severest light,
And tax my open day or secret night.
Did e'er my tongue speak my unguarded heart
The least inclin'd to play the wanton's part?
Did e'er my eye one inward thought reveal,
Which angels might not hear, and virgins tell?
And hast thou, Henry, in my conduct known
One fault, but that which I must ever own,
That I, of all mankind, have lov'd but thee alone?.

Hen. Vainly thou talk'st of loving me alone;
Each man is man, and all our sex is one:
False are our words, and fickle is our mind;
Nor in Love's ritual can we ever find
Vows made to last, or promises to bind.

By Nature prompted, and for empire made,
Alike by strength or cunning we invade :
When arm'd with rage we march against the foe,
We lift the battle-ax and draw the bow;
When fir'd with passion, we attack the fair,
Delusive sighs and brittle vows we bear;
Our falsehood and our arms have equal use,
As they our conquest or delight produce.

The foolish heart thou gav'st, again receive, The only boon departing Love can give. To be less wretched, be no longer true; What strives to fly thee, why shouldst thou pursue? Forget the present fame, indulge a new : Single the loveliest of the amorous youth; Ask for his vow, but hope not for his truth. The next man (and the next thou shalt believe) Will pawn his gods, intending to deceive; Will kneel, implore, persist, o'ercome, and leave.. Hence let thy Cupid aim his arrows right; Be wise and false, shun trouble, seek delight;


* Why shouldst thou weep? let Nature judge our

case ;
I saw thee young and fair ; pursued the chase
Of youth and beauty : I another saw
Fairer and younger : yielding to the law

Of our all-ruling mother, I pursued
More youth, more beauty. Bless'd vicissitude!
My active heart still keeps its pristine flame;
The object alter'd, the desire the same.

This younger, fairer, pleads her rightful charms,
With present power compels me to her arms;
And much I fear from my subjected mind,
(Kf beauty's force to constant love can bind)
That years may roll ere in her turn the maid
Shall weep the fury of my love decay'd,
And weeping follow me, as thou dost now,
With idle clamours of a broken vow.

Nor can the wildness of thy wishes err So wide to hope that thou may'st live with her: Love, well thou know'st, no partnership allows; Cupid, averse, rejects divided vows : Then from thy foolish heart, vain maid, remove An useless sorrow and an ill-starr'd love, And leave me, with the fair, at large in woods to

rove. Emma. Are we in life through one great error led ? Is each man perjur'd, and each nymph betray'd ? Of the superior sex art thou the worst? Am I of mine the most completely curst? Yet let me go with thee, and going prove, From what I will endure, how much I love.

This potent beauty, this triumphant fair, This happy object of our different care, Her let me follow; her let me atiend, A servant; (she may scorn the name of friend) What she demands incessant I'll prepare ; I'll weave her garlands, and I'll plait her hair : My busy diligence shall deck her board, (For there, at least, I may approach my lord) And when her Henry's softer hours advise His servant's absence, with dejected eyes Far I'll recede, and sighs forbid to rise.

Yet when increasing grief brings slow disease, And ebbing life, on terms severe as these, Will have its little lamp no longer fed ;

en Henry's mistress shows him Emma dead,


Rescue my poor remains from vile neglect: With virgin honours let my hearse be deck's, And decent emblem ; and, at least, persuade This happy nymph that Emma may be laid Where thou, dear author of my death, where she With frequent eye my sepulchre may see. The nymph, amidst her joys, may haply breathe : One pious sigh, reflecting on my death, And the sad fate which she may one day prove, Who hopes from Henry's vows eternal love. And thou forsworn, thou cruel as thou art, If Emma's image ever touch'd tlıy heart, Thou sure must give one thought, and drop one tear To her whom love abandon'd to despair ; To her who, dying, on the wounded stone Bid it in lasting characters be known That, of mankind, she lov'd but thee alone.

Hen. Hear, solemn Jove, and, conscious Venus hear; And thou, bright maid, believe me whilst I swear; No time, no change, no future flame, shall move The well-plac'd basis of my lasting love. O powerful virtue ! O victorious fair! At least excuse a trial too severe; Receive the triumph, and forget the war.

No banish'd man, condemn'd in woods to rove, Entreats thy pardon, and implores thy love : No perjur'd knight desires to quit thy arms, Fairest collection of thy sex's charms, Crown of my love, and honour of my youth; Henry, thy Henry, with eternal truth, As thou may'st wish, shall all his life employ, And found his glory in his Emma's joy.

In me behold the potent Edgar's heir, Illustrious earl; him terrible in war Let Loyre confess, for she has felt his sword, And trembling fled before the British lord. Him great in peace and wealth fair Deva knows, For she amidst his spacious meadows flows, Inclines her urn upon his fatten'd lands, And sees his numerous herds imprint her sand


And thou, my fair, my dove, shalt raise thy thought To greatness next to empire: shalt be brought With solemn pomp to my paternal seat, Where peace and plenty on thy word shall wait: Music and song shall wake the marriage-day, And white the priests accuse the bride's delay, Myrtles and roses shall obstruct her way.

Friendship shall still thy evening feasts adorn, And blooming Peace shall ever bless thy morn : Succeeding years their happy race shall run, And Age unheeded by delight come on, While yet superior love shall mock his power ; And when old Time shall turn the fated hour, Which only can our well-tied knot unfold, What rests of both, one sepulchre shall hold.

Hence, then, for ever, from my Emma's breast (That heaven of softness, and that seat of rest) Ye doubts and fears, and all that know to move Tormenting grief, and all that trouble love; Scatter'd by winds recede, and wild in forests rove.

Emma. O day! the fairest sure that ever rose !
Period and end of anxious Emma's woes !
Sire of her joy, and source of her delight,
O! wing'd with pleasure take thy happy flight,
And give each future morn a tincture of thy white..
Yet tell thy votary, potent queen of Love,
Henry, my Henry, will he never rove ?
Will he be ever kind, and just, and good ?
And is there yet no mistress in the wood ?
None, none there is : the thought was rash and vain,
A false idea, and a fancied pain.
Doubt shall for ever quit my strengthen'd heart,
And anxious jealousy's corroding smart;
Nor other inmate shall inhabit there,
But soft belief, young joy, and pleasing care.

Hence let the tides of plenty ebb and flow,
And Fortune's various gale unheeded blow.
If at my feet the suppliant goddess stands,
And sheds her treasure with unwearied hands,
Her present favour cautious l'll embrace,
And not unthankful use the proffer'd grace;


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