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Clyt. Stay thee, Lysimachus; Hephestion hold;
I bar you both. My body interpos’d,
Now let me see which of you dares to strike.
By Jove you 'aye stirr'd the old man that rash arm
That first advances moves against the gods
And our great king, whose deputy I stand.

Lys. Some prop'rer time must terminate our quarrel.
Heph. And cure the bleeding wounds my honour

Clyt. Some prop'rer time I 't is false-no hour is

proper; No time should see a brave man do amiss.Say what 's the noble cause of all this madness, What vast ambition blows the dang’rous fire? : Why, a vain, smiling, whining, coz’ning, woman! By all my triumphs in the heat of youth, When towns were 'sack'd and beauties prostrate lay,!

blood boild, and nature work'd me high, Clytus ne'er bow'd his body to such shame; I knew 'em, and despis’d their cobweb artsThe whole sex is not worth a soldier's thought.

Lys. Our cause of quarrel may to thee seem light, But know a less hath set the word in arms.

Clyt. Yes, Troy they tell us by a woman fell;
Curse on the sex, they are the bane of virtue!
Death! I'd rather this right arm were lost
Than that the king should hear of your imprudence-
What, on a day thus set apart for triumph!

Lys. We were indeed to blame.
Clyt. This memorable day,

When my

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When our hot master, whose impatient soul
Outrides the sun, and sighs for other worlds
To spread his conquests and diffuse his glory,
Now bids the trumpet for a while be silent,
And plays with monarchs whom he us’d to drive;
Shall we by broils awake him into rage,
And rouse the lion that hath ceased to roar?
Lys. Clytus, thou 'rt right-put up thy sword, He-

Had passion not eclips'd the light of reason
Untold we might this consequence have seen.

Heph. Why has not reason power to conquer love ? Why are we thus enslav’d?

Clyt. Because unmann'd,
Because ye follow Alexander's steps.
Heav'ns! that a face should thus bewitch his soul
And ruin all that's great and godlike in it !
Talk be my bane-yet the old man must talk.
Not so he lov'd when he at Issus fought
And join'd in mighty combat with Darius,
Whom from his chariot, flaming all with gems,
He hurl'd to earth and catch'd th' imperial crown.
'Twas not the shaft of love perform’d that feat;
He knew no Cupids then. Now mark the change ;
A brace of rival queens embroil the court,
And while each hand is thus employ'd in beauty
Where has he room for glory?

Heph. In his heart.

Clyt. Well said young Minion!--I indeed forgot To whom I spoke-But Sysigambis comes ;


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Now is your time, for with her comes an idol
That claims homage.--I'll attend the king. [Exit.

Enter SYSIGAMBIS with a Letter, and PARISATIS.
Sys. Why will ye wound me with your fond com-

And urge a suit that I can never grant ?
You know my child, 't is Alexander's will ;
Here he demands you for his lov'd Hephestion ;
To disobey him might inflame his wrath,
And plunge our house in ruins yet unknown.

Par. To sooth this god and charm him into temper
Is there no victim, none but Parisatis?
Must I be doom'd to wretchedness and woe
That others may enjoy the conq'ror's smiles ?
Oh! if you ever lov'd my royal father-
And sure you did, your gushing tears proclaim it
If still his name be dear, have pity on me!
He would not thus have forc'd me to despair;
Indeed he would not~Had I begg'd him thus
He would have heard me ere my heart was broke.
Sys. When will my suff'rings endi oh when, ye

gods! For sixty rolling years my soul has stood The dread vicissitudes of fate unmoy'd ; I thought 'em your decrees, and therefore yielded : But this last trial, as it springs from folly, Exceeds my suff'rance, and I must complain.

Lys. When Sysigambis mourns, no common woe Can be the cause—'t is misery indeed. Yet pardon, mighty queen a wretched prince

Who thus presumes to plead the cause of love,
Beyond my life, beyond the world, [Kneeling. ] 1 prize
Fair Parisatis.—Hear me, i conjure you !

As you have authoriz'd Hephestion's vows • Reject not mine-grant me but equal leave To serve the princess, and let love decide.

Heph. A blessing like the beauteous Parisatis
Whole years of service, and the world's wide empire,
With all the blood that circles in our veins,
Can never merit, therefore in my favour
I begg'd the king to interpose his int'rest,
Therefore I begg'd your majesty's assistance ;
Your word is past, and all my hopes rest on it.
Lys. [Rising.] Perish such hopes! for love's a

gen'rous passion,
Which seeks the happiness of her we love
Beyond th' enjoyment of our own desires ;
Nor kings nor parents here have ought to do:
Love owns no influence, and disdains controul ;
Let 'em stand neuter-'t is all I ask.

Heph. Such arrogance did Alexander woo,
Would lose him all the conquests he has won.

Lys. To talk of conquests well becomes the man
Whose life and sword are but his rival's gift !

Sys. It grieves me, brave Lysimachus, to find
My power fall short of my desires to serve you:
You know Hephestion first declar'd his love,
And 't is as true I promis'd him my aid;
Your glorious king, his mighty advocate,
Became himself an humble suppliant for him.

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Forget her prince, and triumph o'er your passion, A comquest worthy of a soul like thine.

Lys. Forget her, madaml sooner shall the sun Forget to shine and tumble from his sphere. Alas! the stream that circles thro' my heart Is less than love essential to my being ! Farewell, great queen-my honour now demands That Alexander should himself explain That wondrous merit which exalts his fav'rite, And casts Lysimachus at such a distance. [Exit.

Sys. In this wild transport of ungovern'd passion Too far I fear he will incense the king. Is Alexander yet, my lord, arriv'd ?

Heph. Madam, I know not; but Cassander comes; He

may perhaps inform us. Sys. I would shun him: Something there is, I know not why, that shocks me, Something my nature shrinks at when I see him.

[Exeunt. Enter CASSANDER. Cas. The face of day now blushes scarlet deep, Now blackens into night; the low'ring sun, As if the dreadful bus’ness he foreknew, Drives heavily his sable chariot on: [Thunder. How fierce it lightenst how it thunders round me! All nature seems alarm'd for Alexander. Why, be it so: her pangs proclaim my triumph. My soul's first wishes are to startle fate And strike amazement thro' the host of heaven. A mad Chaldean with a flaming torch,

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