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Venetian (who see few steeds save of bronze),
From those Venetians who have skimm'd the coasts
Jac. Fos. Again, Marinal
Mar. Again still, Marina. See you not, he comes here to glut his hate With a last look upon our misery 2 Let him partake it !
Jac. Fos. That were difficult.
Mar. Nothing more easy. He partakes it now — Ay, he may veil beneath a marble brow And sneering lip the pang, but he partakes it. A few brief words of truth shame the devil's servants No less than master; I have probed his soul A moment, as the eternal fire, ere long, Will reach it always. See how he shrinks from me ! With death, and chains, and exile in his hand To scatter o'er his kind as he thinks fit : They are his weapons, not his armour, for I have pierced him to the core of his cold heart. I care not for his frowns ! We can but die, And he but live, for him the very worst Of destinies: each day secures him more His tempter's.
Jac. Fos. This is mere insanity.
Mar. It may be so; and who hath made us mad 2
Lor. Let her go on; it irks not me.
Mar. That's false : You canne here to enjoy a heartless triumph Of cold looks upon manifold griefs: You came To be sued to in vain—to mark our tears, And hoard our groans—to gaze upon the wreck Which you have made a prince's son—my husband; In short, to trample on the fallen — an office The hangman shrinks from, as all men from him : How have you sped 2 We are wretched, signor, as Your plots could make, and vengeance could desire us, And how feel you ?
Mar. By thunder blasted : They feel not, but no less are shiver'd. Come,
* [If the two Foscari do nothing to defeat the machinations of their remorseless foe, Marina, the wife of the younger, at least revenges them, by letting loose the venom of her tongue
BY RON'S WORKS.
Doge. I feel too much thou hast not.
Doge. I see the man—what mean'st thou ?
Mur. Caution :
Mur. Wretch 'tis no virtue, but the policy
Doge. Daughter, it is superfluous; I have long Known Loredano.
Lor. You may know him better.
Mar. Yes; worse he could not.
Jac. Fos. Father, let not these
Jac. Fos. And I feel, besides, that mine
Mar. No-not here.
Jac. Fos. They might behold their parent any
Mar. I would that they beheld their father in
I have not
Doge. Not so: they shall await you in my chamber. Jac. Fos. And must I leave them — all 2
Lor. You must. Jac. Fos. - Not one 7 Lor. They are the state's.
Mar. I thought they had been mine. JLor. They are, in all maternal things.
Mar. That is,
In all things painful. If they're sick, they will
Lor. And present Liberation.
Doge. He speaks truth.
Jac. Fos. No doubt but 'tis
Exchange of chains for heavier chains I owe him.
Bar. And have you confidence in such a project?
Lor. I have.
Bar. 'Tis hard upon his years.
Lor. Say rather Kind to relieve him from the cares of state.
Bar. 'Twill break his heart.
Lor. Age has no heart to break. He has seen his son's half broken, and, except A start of feeling in his dungeon, never Swerved.
Bar. In his countenance, I grant you, never; But I have seen him sometimes in a calm So desolate, that the most clamorous grief Had nought to envy him within. Where is he 2
Lor. In his own portion of the palace, with His son, and the whole race of Foscaris.
Bar. Bidding farewell.
Lor. A last. As soon he shall Bid to his dukedom. Bar. When embarks the son 2
Lor. Forthwith—when this long leave is taken. 'Tis Time to admonish them again.
Bar. Forbear; Retrench not from their moments. Lor. Not I, now
We have higher business for our own. This day
Bar. In my mind, too deep.
Lor. 'Tis moderate — not even life for life, the rule Denounced of retribution from all time; They owe me still my father's and my uncle's.
Bar. Did not the Doge deny this strongly 2
Lor. Doubtless, Bar. And did not this shake your suspicion ? Lor. No.
Bar. But if this deposition should take place By our united influence in the Council, It must be done with all the deference Due to his years, his station, and his deeds.
Lor. As much of ceremony as you will, So that the thing be done. You may, for aught I care, depute the Council on their knees, (Like Barbarossa to the Pope,) to beg him To have the courtesy to abdicate.
Bar. What, if he will not 2
Lor. We'll elect another, And make him null. Bar. But will the laws uphold us 2
Lor. What laws? —“The Ten” are laws; and if they were not, I will be legislator in this business. Bar. At your own peril 2
Lor. There is none, I tell you, Our powers are such. Bar. But he has twice already
Solicited permission to retire,
The Bridge which few repass.
202 BYRON'S WORKS. act v. Bar. Unask'd 2 Mem. Being worth our lives Lor. It shows | If we divulge them, doubtless they are worth
The impression of his former instances:
Bar. Could I but be certain
Lor. He is safe, I tell you;
Bar. But discarded princes
Bar. And why not wait these few years 2
Lor. Because we have waited long enough, and he Lived longer than enough. Hence 1 in to council :
[Ereunt Loned ANo and BARBARIGo.
And men of eighty
Mem. Thus hesitate 2 “The Ten" have call'd in aid Of their deliberation five and twenty Patricians of the senate – you are one, And I another; and it seems to me Both honour’d by the choice or chance which leads us To mingle with a body so august.
Sen. Most true. I say no more.
Mem. As we hope, signor,
I am silent. why
Let us view them: they,
* [“ Unnerved, and now unsettled in his mind
Something, at least to you or me.
Sen. I sought not
Mem. Let us not
Sen. All are not met, but I am of your thought So far – let's in.
Mem. The earliest are most welcome In earnest councils—we will not be least so.
Enter the DoGE, JAcopo FoscARI, and MARINA.
Jac. Fos. Ah, father: though I must and will depart, Yet—yet — I pray you to obtain for me That I once more return unto my home," Howe'er remote the period. Let there be A point of time, as beacon to my heart, With any penalty annex'd they please, But let me still return.
Doge. Son Jacopo, Go and obey our country's will : 'tis not For us to look beyond.
Jac. Fos. But still I must Look back. I pray you think of me. Doge. Alas !
You ever were my dearest offspring, when
Mar. My husband let us on ; this but prolongs Our sorrow.
Jac. Fos. But we are not summon'd yet; The galley's sails are not unfurl’d : — who knows 2 The wind may change.
Mar. And if it do, it will not Change their hearts, or your lot; the galley's oar Will quickly clear the harbour.
Jac. Fos. O, ye elements : Where are your storms ?
Mar. In human breasts. Alas ! Will nothing calm you ?
Jac. Fos. Never yet did mariner
Put up to patron saint such prayers for prosperous
scene I. THE TWO FOSCAR.I. 293 Thy fond fidelity for a time deprives Mar. Away! Of such support But for myself alone, Let me support him—my best love : Oh, God .
May all the winds of heaven howl down the Gulf,
Mar. To man thyself, I trust, with time, to master
Jac. Fos. Double, Triple, and tenfold torture . But you are right, It must be borne. Father, your blessing.
Doge. Would It could avail thee but no less thou hast it.
Jac. Fos. Forgive
Jac. Fos. My poor mother, for my birth, And me for having lived, and you yourself (As I forgive you), for the gift of life, Which you bestow'd upon me as my sire,
Mar. What hast thou done 2
Jac. Fos. Nothing. I cannot charge My memory with much save sorrow ; but I have been so beyond the common lot Chasten’d and visited, I needs must think That I was wicked. If it be so, may What I have undergone here keep me from A like hereafter :
There must be life yet in that heart—he could not Thus leave me.
Doge. Daughter |
Mar. Hold thy peace, old man I am no daughter now—thou hast no son. Oh, Foscari :
Offi. We must remove the body.
Mar. Touch it not, dungeon miscreants : your base
Ends with his life, and goes not beyond murder, Even by your murderous laws. Leave his remains To those who know to honour them.
Offi. I must Inform the signory, and learn their pleasure.
Doge. Inform the signory from me, the Doge, They have no further power upon those ashes: While he lived, he was theirs, as fits a subject– Now he is mine—my broken-hearted boy
Mar. And I must live :
Doge. Your children live, Marina.
Mar. My children true—they live, and I must live To bring them up to serve the state, and die As died their father. Oh! what best of blessings Were barrenness in Venice I Would my mother Had been so 2
Mar. What : You feel it then at last—you !—Where is now The stoic of the state 2
Doge (throwing himself down by the body). Here!
Mar. Ay, weep on 1 I thought you had no tears—you hoarded them Until they are useless; but weep on 1 he never Shall weep more—never, never more.
My unhappy children :
Enter Loited ANo and BARBARIgo. Lor. What's here 2 Mar. Ah! the devil come to insult the dead : Avaunt : Incarnate Lucifer 'tis holy ground. A martyr's ashes now lie there, which make it A shrine. Get thee back to thy place of torment Bar. Lady, we knew not of this sad event, But pass'd here merely on our path from council. Mar. Pass on. Lor. We sought the Doge. Mar. (pointing to the Doge, who is still on the ground by his son's body). He's busy, look, About the business you provided for him. Are ye content 2
Bar. We will not interrupt Bur. Still so inexorable? A parent's sorrows. Lor. Still. Mar. No, ye only make them, Bar. But let him Then leave them. Inter his son before we press upon him Doge (rising). Sirs, I am ready. This edict. ur-. No — not now. Lor. Let him call up into life “ Lor. Yet 'twas important. My sire and uncle – I consent. Men may Looe. If 'twas sc, I can Even aged men, be, or appear to be, only repeat—I am ready. Sires of a hundred sons, but cannot kindle Bar. It shall not be An atom of their ancestors from earth.
Just now, though Venice totter'd o'er the deep
Like a frail vessel. I respect your griefs.
body. Manent Lok EDANo and BARBARIGo.
Could give him trouble farther.
Bar. These arc words;
Lor. Sorrow preys upon
Bar. And therefore You would deprive this old man of all business 2
Lor. The thing's decreed. The Giunta and “the
Have made it law — who shall oppose that law 7
Bar. Humanity :
Lor. Because his son is dead 2
Bar. And yet unburied.
Lor. Had we known this when
Bar. I'll not consent.
Lor, You have consented to All that's essential—leave the rest to me.
Bar. Why press his abdication now 2
Bar. You have a son.
The victims are not equal: he has seen
Bar. And art thou sure | He dealt in such 7
Lor. Most sure.
Bar. And yet he seems All openness.
Lor. And so he seem'd not long
Ago to Carmagnuola.
Bar. The attainted
After the very night in which “the Ten”
on him [hand—
Bar. Was Carmagnuola
In early life its foe, but, in his manhood,
Bar. Ah that seems
Lor. The Romans (and we ape them) gave a |
To him who took a city; and they gave
* An historical fact. Sec Daru, tom. ii.