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And Steno's lie, couch'd in two worthless | Op grateful masses for Heaven's grace in lines,
snatching Hath decimated Venice, put in peril Our lives and country from thy wickedness. A senate which hath stood eight hundred The place wherein as Doge thoil shouldst years,
be painted, Discrown'd a prince, cut off his crownless With thine illustrious predecessors, is head,
To be left vacant, with a death-black veil And forged new fetters for a groaning people! Flung over these dim words engraved
Let the poor wretch, like to the courtesan beneath,
Ifit so please him— 'twere a pride fit for him! "Decapitated for his crimes."
Him, who, whate'er he now is, was a hero, But let it be so:-it will be in vain. = By the intrusion of his very prayers;
The veil which blackens o'er this blighted Nothing of good can come from such a source,
name, Nor would we aught with him, nor now, And hides, or seems to hide, these lineaments,
Shall draw more gazers than the thousand We leave him to himself, that lowest depth portraits Of human baseness. Pardon is for men, Which glitter round it in their pictured And not for reptiles- we have none for Steno,
trappingsAnd no resentment; things like him must Your delegated slaves—the people's tyrants ! sting,
“Decapitated for his crimes ! ” What And higher beings suffer; 'tis the charter
crimes ? Of life. The man who dies by the adder's Were it not better to record the facts, fang
So that the contemplator might approve, May have the crawler crush'd, but feels no Or at the least learn whence the crimes arose? anger:
When the beholder knows a Doge conspired, 'Twas the worm's nature; and some men Let him be told the cause-- it is your history.
Benint. Time must reply to that; our In soul, more than the living things of sons will judge tombs.
Their fathers' judgment, which I now Doge (to Benintende). Signor, complete pronounce.
that which you deem your duty, As Doge, clad in the ducal robes and cap, Benint. Before we can proceed upon that Thou shalt be led hence to the Giant's duty,
Staircase, We would request the princess to withdraw; Where thou and all our princes are invested; Twill move her too much to be witness to it. And there, the ducal crown being first Ang. I know it will, and yet I must
resumed endare it;
Upon the spot where it was first assumed, For 'tis a part of mine,I will not quit, Thy head shall be struck off; and Heaven Except by force, my husband's side. Proceed !
Upon thy soul! Nay, fear not either shriek, or sigh, or tear; Doge. Is this the Giunta's sentence ? Though my heart burst, is shall be silent.- Benint. It is. Speak!
Doge. I can endure it. And the time? Thave that within which shall o'ermaster all. Benint. Must be immediate.- Make thy Benint. Marino Faliero, Doge of Venice,
peace with God; Count of Val di Marino, Senator,
Within an hour thou must be in his presence. And some timeGeneral of the Fleet andArmy, Doge. I am already; and my blood will Noble Venetian, many times and oft
rise Entrusted by the state with high employ- To Heaven before the souls of those who ments,
shed it. Even to the highest, listen to the sentence: Are all my lands confiscated ? Convict by many witnesses and proofs, Benint. They are ; And by thine own confession, of the guilt And goods, and jewels, and all kind of of treachery and treason, yet unheard of
treasure, Until this trial - the decree is death. Except two thousand ducats - these disposeof. Thy goods are confiscate unto the state, Doge. That's harsh–I would have fain Thy name is razed from out her records, save reserved the lands Upon a public day of thanksgiving Near to Treviso, which I hold by investment For this our most miraculous deliverance, From Laurence the Count-bishop of Ceneda, When thou art noted in our calendars In fief perpetual to myself and heirs, With earthquakes, pestilence, and foreign To portion them (leaving my city-spoil,
My palace and my treasures, to your forfeit) And the great enemy of man, as subject Between my consort and my kinsmen.
Which yet remain of the accorded hour, Lle under the state's ban ; their chief, thy Still falling - I have done with 'Time. nephew,
Ang. Alay! In peril of his own life; but the council And I have been the cause, the unconscious Postpones his trial for the present. If
cause ; Thou will'st a state unto thy widow'd And for this funeral marriage, this black princess,
union, Fear not, for we will do her justice. Which thou, compliant with my father's Ang. Signors,
wish, I share not in your spoil! From henceforth, Didst promise at his death, thou hast seal'd know
thine own. I am devoted unto God alone,
Doge. Not so: there was that in my And take my refuge in the cloister.
spirit ever Doge. Come!
Which shaped out for itself some great The hour may be a hard one, but 'twill end.
reverse; Have I aught else to undergo save death? The marvel is, it came not until nowBenint. You have nought to do, except And yet it was foretold me. confess and die.
Ang. How foretold you? The priest is robed, the scimitar is bare, Doge. Long years ago – so long, they And both await without.-But, above all, are a doubt Think not to speak unto the people; they In memory, and yet they live in annals: Are now by thousands swarming at the gates, When I was in my youth, and served the But these are closed: the Ten,the Avogadori, The Giunta, and the chief men of the Forty, And signory as podesta and captain Alone will be beholders of thy doom, Of the town of 'Treviso, on a day And they are ready to attend the Doge. Of festival, the sluggish bishop who Doge. The Doge!
Convey'd the Host aroused my rash young Benint. Yes, Doge, thou hast lived and
anger, thou shalt die
By strange delay, and arrogant reply A sovereign; till the moment which precedes To my reproof; I raised my hand and The separation of that head and trunk,
smote him, That ducal crown and head shall be united. Until he reel'd beneath his holy borthen; Thou hast forgot thy dignity in deigning And as he rose from earth again, he raised To plot with petty traitors; not so we, His tremulous hands in pious wrath towards Who in the very punishment acknowledge Heaven. The prince. Thy vile accomplices have died Thence pointing to the Host, which had The dog's death, and the wolf's; but thou fallen from him, shalt fall
He turn'd to me, and said, “The hour will As falls the lion by the hunters, girt By those who feel a proud compassion for When he thou hast o'erthrown shall overthee,
throw thee: And mourn even the inevitable death The glory shall depart from out thy house, Provoked by thy wild wrath, and regal The wisdom shall be shaken from thy soul, fierceness.
And in thy best maturity of mind Now we remit thee to thy preparation : A madness of the heart shall seize upon thee; Let it be brief, and we ourselves will be Passion shall tear thee when all passions Thy guides unto the place where first we
In other men, or mellow into virtues: United to thee as thy subjects, and And majesty, which decks all other heads, Thy senate; and must now be parted from thee Shall crown to leave thee headless; honours As such for ever on the self-same spot. –
shall Guards! form the Doge's escort to his But prove to thee the heralds of destruction, chamber.
[Freunt. And hoary hairs of shame and both of death,
But not such death as fits an aged man."
Thus saying, he pass'd on. - That hour is SCENE II. – The Doge's Apartment. The Doge as prisoner, and the Duchess Ang. And with this warning couldst thon attending him.
not have striven
To avert the fatal moment, and atone Doge. Now, that the priest is gone, 'twere By penitence for that which thou hadst done? useless all
Doge. I own the words went to my To linger out the miserable minutes;
heart, so much But one pang more, the pang of parting That I remember'd them amid the maze from thee,
of life, as if they formd a spretral voice: And I will leave the few last grains of sand, which shook me in a supernatural dreami
And I repented; but 'twas not for me But thou canst judge of me more kindly now,
Glory, and wealth, and power, and fame, Thou canst not have forgot what all remember,
Which generally leave some flowers to That on my day of landing here as Doge,
bloom On my return from Rome, a mist of such Even o’er the grave, I have nothing left, Inwonted density went on before
not even The Bucentaur like the columnar cloud A little love, or friendship, or esteem, Which usher'd Israel out of Exypt, till No, not enough to extract an epitaph The pilot was misled, and disembark'd us From ostentatious kinsmen; in one hour Between the pillars of Saint Mark's, where 'tis I have uprooted all my former life, The custom of the state to put to death And outlived every thing, except thy heart, Its criminals, instead of touching at The pure, the good, the gentle, which will oft The Riva della Paglia, as the wont is,- With unimpair'd bnt not a clamorous grief So that all Venice shudder'd at the omen. Still keep-Thou turn’st so pale-Alas! she Ang. Ah! little boots it now to recollect
faints, Such things.
She hath no breath, no pulse! Guards! Doge. And yet I find a comfort in
lend your aidThe thought that these things are the work I cannot leave her thus, and yet 'tis better, of Fate;
Since every lifeless moment spares a pang. For I would rather yield to gods than men, When she shakes off this temporary death, Or cling to any creed of destiny,
I shall be with the Eternal.-- Call her Rather than deem these mortals, most of whom
One look !-how cold her hand! as cold as I know to be as worthless as the dust,
mine And weak as worthless, more than instru- Shall be ere she recovers.-Gently tend her, ments
And take my last thanks.- I am ready now. Of an o'er-ruling power; they in themselves [The Attendants of ANGIOLINA enter Were all incapable-they could not be
and surround their mistress, who Victors of him who oft had conquer'd for
has fainted.- Exeunt the Doge, them!
Guards, etc, etc. Ang. Employ the minutes left in aspirations
SCENE III.— The Court of the Ducal Palace: Of a more healing nature, and in peace the outer gates are shut against the people. Even with these wretches take thy flight - The Doge enters in his ducal robes, in to Heaven.
procession with the Council of Ten and Doge. I am at peace: the peace of certainty other Patricians, attended by the Guards That a sure hour will come, when their
till they arrive at the top of the “Giant's
Staircase” (where the Doges took the And this proud city, and these azure waters,
oaths); the Executioner is stationed there And all which makes them eminent and
with his sword. On arriving, a Chief of bright,
the Ten takes of the ducal cap from the Shall be a desolation and a curse,
Doge's head. A hissing and a scoff unto the nations, A Carthage, and a Tyre, an Ocean-Babel! Doge. So, now the Doge is nothing, and Ang. Speak not thus now; the surge of
at last passion still
I am again Marino Faliero : Sweeps o'er thee to the last; thou dost deceive Tis weil to be so, though but for a moment. Thyself and canst not injure them-be Here was I crown'd, and here, bear witness, calmer.
Heaven! Doge. I stand within eternity, and see With how much more contentment I resign Into eternity, and I behold
That shining mockery, the ducal bauble, Ay, palpable as I see thy sweet face Than I received the fatal ornament. For the last time_the days which I denounce One of the Ten. Thou tremblest, Faliero! Unto all tiine against these wave-girt walls, Doge. "Tis with age, then. And they who are indwellers.
Benint. Faliero ! hast thou aught further Guard (coming forward). Doge of Venice, to commend, The Ten are in attendance on your highness! Compatible with justice, to the senate ? Doge. Then farewell, Angiolina !- one Doge. I would commend my nephew to embrace
their mercy, Forgive the old man who hath been to thee My consort to their justice; for methinks A fond but fatal husband love iny memory
My death, and such a death, might settle all I would not ask so much for me still living, Between the state and me.
Benint. They shall be cared for; When thy patricians beg their bitter bread Even notwithstanding thine unheard-of In narrow streets, and in their shameful need crime.
Make their nobility a plea for pity! Doge. Unheard-of! ay, there's not a Then, when the few who still retain a wreck history
Of their great fathers' heritage shall fawn But shows a thousand crown'd conspirators Round a barbarian Vice of Kings' Vice Against the people; but to set them free
gerent, One sovereign only died, and one is dying. Even in the palace where they sway'd as Benint. And who are they who fell in sovereigns, such a cause?
Even in the palace where they slew their Doge. The King of Sparta, and the Doge sovereign, of Venice
Proud of some name they have disgraced, Agis and Faliero!
or sprung Benint. Hast thou more
From an adulteress boastful of her guilt To utter or to do?
With some large gondolier or foreign soldier, Doge. May I speak ?
Shall bear about their bastardy in triumph Benint. Thou mayst;
To the third spurious generation ;-when But recollect the people are without, Thy sons are in the lowest scale of being, Beyond the compass of the human voice. Slaves turn'd o'er to the vanquish'd by the
Doge. I speak to Time and to Eternity, victors, Of which I grow a portion, not to man. Despised by cowards for greater cowardice, Ye elements ! in which to be resolved And scorn'd even by the vicious for such vices I hasten, let my voice be as a spirit As in the monstrous grasp of their conception Upon you! Ye blue waves! which bore Defy all codes to image or to name them; my banner,
Then, when of Cyprus, now thy subject Ye winds! which flutter'd o’er as if you kingdom, loved it,
All thine inheritance shall be her shame And fill'd iny swelling sails as they were Entailid on thy less virtuour daughters, wafted
grown To many a triumph! Thou, my native earth, A wider proverb for worse prostitution;Which I have bled for, and thou foreign When all the ills of conquer'd states shall earth,
cling thee, Which drank this willing blood from many Vice without splendour, sin without relief a wound!
Even from the gloss of love to smooth it o'er, Ye stones, in which my gore will not sink, But in its stead coarse lusts of habitude. but
Prurient yet passionless, cold studied Reek np to Heaven ! Ye skies, which will lewdness, receive it!
Depraving nature': frailty to an art;Thou sun! which shinest on these things, when these and niore are heavy on thee, and Thou !
when Who kindlest and who quenchest suns! Smiles without mirth, and pastimes without Attest!
pleasure, I am not innocent - but are these guiltless? Youth without honour, age without respect, I perish, but not unavenged; far ages
Meanness and weakness, and
sense of woe Float up from the abyss of time to be, 'Gainst which thou wilt not strive, and And show these eyes, before they close,
dar'st not murmur, the doom
Have made thee last and worst of peopled Of this proud city, and I leave my curse
deserts: On her and hers for ever!-Yes, the hours Then, in the last gasp of thine agony, Are silently engendering of the day, Amidst thy many murders, think of mine! When she who built'gainst Attila a bulwark, Thou den of drunkards with the blood of Shall yield, and bloodlessly and basely yield princes ! Unto a bastard-Attila, without
Gehenna of the waters! thou sea-Sodom! Shedding so much blond in her last defence Thus I devote thee to the infernal gods! As these old veins,oft draind in shielding her, Thee and thy serpent-seed ! Shall pour in sacrifice. She shall be bought [Here the Dogk turns, and addresses And sold, and be an appanage to those
the Erecutioner. Who shall despise her!-She shall stoop to be Slave, do thine office; A province for an empire, petty town Strike as I struck the foe! Strike as I would In lieu of capital, with slaves for senates, Have struck those tyrants! Strike deep as Beggars for nobles, panders for a people!
my curse! Then, when the Hebrew 's in thy palaces, Strike-and but once! The Hun in thy high places, and the Greek (The Doge throws himself upon his Walke o'er thy mart, and smiles on it
knees, and as the Erecutioner raises for his
his sword the scene closcs.
SCENE IV.-The Piazza and Piazzetta of Now-now-he kneels - and now they form Saint Mark's.-- The People in crowds
a circle gathered round the grated gates of the Round him, and all is hidden - but I see Ducal Palace, which are shut.
The lifted sword in air-Ah! hark! it falls!
[The people murmur. First Citizen. I have gain'd the gate, Third Citizen. Then they have murder'd and can discern the Ten,
him who would have freed us. Robed in their gowns of state, ranged round Fourth Citizen. He was a kind man to the Doge.
the commons ever. Second Citizen. I cannot reach thee with Fifth Citizen. Wisely they did to keep mine utmost effort.
their portals barr'd. How is it? let us hear at least, since Would we had known the work they were sight
preparing Is thus prohibited unto the people, Ere we were summon'd here; we would Except the occupiers of those bars.
have brought First Ciizen. One has approached the Weapons, and forced them! Doge, and now they strip
Sixth Citizen. Are you sure he's dead ? The ducal bonnet from his head-and now First Citizen. I saw the sword fall-Lo! He raises his keen eyes to Heaven. I see
what have we here? Them glitter, and his lips move-Hush! Enter on the Balcony of the Palace hush!- No
which fronts Saint Mark's Place a Twas but a murmur - Carse upon the CHIEF OP The Ten, with a bloody distance !
sword. He waves it thrice before the His words are inarticulate, but the voice People, and e.rclaims, Swells up like mutter'd thunder ; would “Justice hath dealt upon the mighty we could
Traitor!” Bat gather a sole sentence!
[The gates are opened; the populace Second Citizen. Hush ! we perhaps may rush in towards the“Giani's Staircase," catch the sound.
where the erecution has taken place. First Citizen. Tis vain.
The foremost of them erclaims to those I cannot hear him. - How his hoary hair
behind, Streams on the wind !ke fo: in upon the The gory head rolls down the “Giant's wave!
Steps ! ” [The curtain falls.
A MY S T E RY.
"Now the Serpent was more subtil than any beast of the field
taken the same liberties with his subject SIR WALTER SCOTT, BART. which were common formerly, as may be
THIS MYSTERY OF CAIN seen by any reader curious enough to refer 15 INSCRIE ED, BY HIS OBLIGED FRIEND, AND
to those very profane productions, whether FAITHFUL BERVANT,
in English, French, Italian, or Spanish. THE AUTHOR.
The author has endeavoured to preserve the language adapted to his characters; and where it is (and this is but rarely) taken
from actual Scripture, he has made as little PREFACE.
alteration, even of words, as the rhythm
would permit. The reader will recollect The following scenes
are entitled “a that the book of Genesis does not state that Mystery," in conformity with the ancient Eve was tempted by a demon, but by “the title annexed to dramas upon similar sub- Serpent;" and that only because he was irts, which were styled Mysteries, or "the most subtil of all the beasts of the Moralities. The author has Üy no meanol field.” Whatever interpretation the Rabbins