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DAVID AND GOLIATH.

PART V.

SCENE - The Tent of Saul.

Saul (rising from his couch). Oh! that I knew the black and midnight arts Of wizard sorcery! that I could call The slumb’ring spirit from the shades of hell ! Or, like Chaldean sages, could foreknow Th' event of things unacted! I might then Anticipate my fortune. How I'm fall’n ! The sport of vain chimeras, the weak slave Of Fear and Fancy; coveting to know The arts obscene, which foul diviners use. Thick blood and moping melancholy lead To baleful Superstition — that fell fiend, Whose with’ring charms blast the fair bloom of virtue. Why did my wounded pride with scorn reject The wholesome truths which holy Samuel told me ? Why drive him from my presence ? he might now Raise my sunk soul, and my benighted mind Enlighten with religion's cheering ray. He dar'd to menace me with loss of empire; And I, for that bold honesty, dismiss'd him. “ Another shall possess thy throne,” he cry'd :

" A stranger !” This unwelcome prophecy
Has lind my crown and strew'd my coach with

thorns.
Each ray of op’ning merit I discern
In friend or foe, distracts my troubled soul,
Lest he should prove my rival. But this morn,
Een my young champion, lovely as he lookd
In blooming valour, struck me to the soul
With Jealousy's barb'd dart. O Jealousy,
Thou ugliest fiend of hell! thy deadly renom
Preys op my vitals, turns the healthful hue
Of ny fresh cheek to haggard sallowness,
And drinks my spirit up!

(4 fourish of trumpets, shouting, Se.

What sounds are those ? The combat is decided. Hark! again, Those shouts proclaim it! Now, O God of Jacob, If yet thou hast not quite withdrawn from Saul, Thy light and favoar prosper me this once! Bat Abaer comes! I dread to hear his tale! Fair Hope, with smiling face but ling ring foot, Has Locg deceiv'd me.

King of Israel, hail! Now thou art King indeed. The youth has conquer'd: Goliath's dead. Saul.

Oh speak thy tale again, Lest my food ears deceive me ! 4 .

Thy young champion Has slain the giant. Saule

Then God is gracious still, La spite of my offences ! But, good Aboer! How was it? Tell me all. Where is my champion ?

Quick let me press him to my grateful heart,
And pay him a king's thanks. And yet, who knows,
This forward friend may prove an active foe?
No more of that. Tell me the whole, brare Abner !
And paint the glorious acts of my young hero!

Ab. Full in the centre of the camp they stood!
Th' opposing armies rang'd on either side
In proud array. The haughty giant stalk'd,
Stately across the valley. Next, the youth
With modest confidence advanc'd. Nor pomp,
Nor gay parade, nor martial ornament,
His graceful form adorn'd. Goliath straight,
With solemn state, began the busy work
Of dreadful preparation. In one place
His closely jointed mail an op’ning left
For air, and only one: the watchful youth
Mark'd that the beaver of his helm was up.
Meanwhile the giant such a blow devis d
As would have crush'd him. This the youth per-

ceiv'd,

Chis well-directed sline And from his well-directed sling quick hurla, With dextrous aim, a stone, which sunk, deep

lodg’d, In the capacious forehead of the foe. Then with a cry, as loud and terrible As Libyan lions roaring for their young, Quite stunn'd, the furious giant stagger'd, reel'd, And fell: the mighty mass of man tell prone. With its own weight his shatter'd bulk was bruis'd. His clatt’ring arms rang dreadful through the field, And the firm basis of the solid earth Shook. Chok'd with blood and dust, he curst his gods, And died blaspheming! Straight the victor youth Drew from its sheath the giant's pond'rous sword, And from th' enormous trunk the gory head Furious in death he sever'd. The grim visage Look'd threat'ning still, and still frown'd horribly.

Sau. () glorious deed ! ( valiant conqueror !

Ab. The youth so calm appear’d, so nobly firm,
So cool, yet so intrepid, that these eyes
Ne'er saw such temp’rate valour so chastis’d
By modesty.

Saul. Thou dwell'st upon his praise
With needless circumstance. 'Twas nobly done;
But others too have fought !
Ab.

None, none, so bravely.
Saul. What follow'd next?
Ab.

The shouting Israelites On the Philistines rush’d, and still pursued Their routed remnants. In dismay, their bands Disorder'd fly, while shouts of loud acclaim Pursue their brave deliverer. Lo, he comes ! Bearing the giant's head and shining sword, His well-earn'd trophies.

Saul, ABNER, David. [David bearing GOLIATH's head and sword. He

kneels, and lays both at Saul's feet.] Saul.

Welcome to my heart,
My glorious champion! My deliverer, welcome!
How shall I speak the swelling gratitude
Of my full heart! or give thee the high praise
Thy gallant deeds deserve !

Dav.

O mighty king! Sweet is the breath of praise when giv'n by those Whose own high merit claims the praise they give. But let not this one prosperous event, By Heaven directed, be ascrib'd to me: I might have fought with equal skill and courage, And not have gain'd this conquest; then had shame, Harsh obloquy, and foul disgrace befall'n me; But prosp’rous fortune gains the praise of ralour.

Saul. I like not this. In every thing superior
He soars above me (aside). — Modest youth, thou'rt

right;
And fortune, as thou say'st, deserves the praise
We give to human valour.
Dav.

Rather say
The God of Hosts deserves it.
Saul.

Tell me, youth,
What is thy name, and what thy father's house?
· Dav. My name is David ; Jesse is my sire:
An humble Bethle’mite of Judah's tribe.

Saul. David, the son of Jesse! sure that name
Has been familiar to me. Nay, thy voice,
Thy form, and features, I remember too,
Though faint and indistinctly.
Ab.

In this hero
Behold thy sweet musician; he whose harp
Expell’d the melancholy fiend, whose pow'r
Enslav'd thy spirit.
Saul.

This the modest youth
Whom for his skill and virtues I preferr'd
To bear my armour ?

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