« PreviousContinue »
BEAUMONT AND FLETCHER.
DRUSIUS, CaratacII, general of the Britons, cousin to
Roman officers. Bonduca.
Soldiers. PENIUS, a brave Roman commander, but stubborn to the general.
WOMEN. JUNIUS, a Roman captain, in love with Bonduca's daughter.
Bonduca, queen of the Iceni, a brave virago. Petillius, another Roman captain.
Her two duughters, by Prasutagus.
Dexeusius;} Roman commanders.
Made themes for songs to shame them: And a Enter Bonduca, Daughters, Hengo, Nennius, A woman beat them, Nennius; a weak woman, and Soldiers.
A woman, beat these Romans !
Car. So it seems;
A man would shame to talk so.
Bond. Cousin, do you grieve my
Car. No, Bonduca;
If I grieve, it is the bearing of your fortunes :
Divided, but a talker. 'Tis a truth, Their mothers got them sleeping, Pleasure nursed | That Rome has led before us twice, and routed; them;
A truth we ought to crown the gods for, lady, Their bodies sweat with sweet oils, love's allure And not our tongues; a truth is none of ours, ments,
Nor in our ends, more than the noble bearing; Not lusty arms. Dare they send these to seek us, | For then it leaves to be a virtue, lady, These Roman girls? is Britain grown so wanton And we, that have been victors, beat ourselves, Twice we have beat them, Nennins, scattered them; When we insult upon our honour's subject. And through their big-boned Germans, on whose Bond. My valiant cousin, is it foul to say pikes
What liberty and honour bid us do, The honour of their actions sits in triumph, And what the gods allow us?
Car. No, Bonduca;
Bond. What? So what we say exceed not what we do.
Car. Disheartened, You call the Romans fearful, fleeing Romans, Run, run, Bonduca ! not the quick rack swifter; * And Roman girls, the lees of tainted pleasures:' | The virgin from the hated ravisher Does this become a doer? are they such? Not halt so fearful; not a flight drawn home, Bond. They are no more.
A round stone from a sling, a lover's wish, Car. Where is your conquest then?
E’er made that haste, that they have. By the gods, Why are your altars crowned with wreaths of I've seen these Britons, that you magnify, flowers?
Run as they would have out-run time, and roarThe beasts with gilt horns waiting for the fire?
ing, The holy Druides composing songs
Basely for mercy roaring; the light shadows, Of everlasting life to victory?
That in a thought scur o'er the fields of corn,
Bond. Oh, ye powers,
I've seen thee run too'; and thee, Nennius; Let's home and sleep; for such great overthrows Yea, run apace, both; then, when Penius A candle burns too bright a sacrifice,
(The Roman girl!) cut through your armed carts, A glow-worm's tail too full of flame. Oh, Nen- And drove them bcadlong on ye, down the hill; nius,
Then, when he hunted ye like Britain foxes, Thou hadst a noble uncle, knew a Roman, More by the scent than sight; then did I sec And how to speak him, how to give him weight These valiant and approved men of Britain, In both his fortunes.
Like boding owls, creep into tods of ivy, Bond. By the gods, I think
And hoot their fears to one another nightly. You doat upon these Romans, Caratach!
Nen. And what did you then, Caratach? Car. Witness these wounds, I do; they were
Car. I fied too, fairly given:
But not so fast; your jewel had been lost then, I love an enemy; I was born a soldier ; Young Ilengo there; he trasht me, Nennius: And be that in the head of his troop defies For, when your fears out-run him, then stept I, me,
And in the head of all the Roman fury Bending my manly body with his sword, Took him, and, with my tough belt, to my back I make a mistress. Yellow-tressed Hymen I buckled him; behind him, iny sure shield; Ne'er tied a longing virgin with more joy, And then I followed. If I say I fought Than I am married to that man, that wounds me: Five times in bringing off this bud of Britain, And are not all these Roman? Ten struck battles I lie not, Nennius. Neither had you heard I sucked these honoured scars from, and all Me speak this, or ever seen the child more, Roman;
But that the son of virtue, Penius, Ten years of bitter nights and heavy marches, Seeing me steer through all these storms of danger, (When many a frozen storın sung through my My helm still in my hand (my sword), my prow cuirass,
Turned to my foe (my face), he cried out nobly, And made it doubtful, whether that or I "Go, Briton, bear thy lion's whelp off safely; Were the more stubborn metal) have I wrought Thy manly sword has ransomed thee; grow strong, • through,
And let me meet thee once again in arms; And all to try these Romans. Ten times a-night | Then, it thou standest, thou art mine.' I took his I have swam the rivers, when the stars of Rome offer, Sbot at me as I floated, and the billows
And here I am to honour him. Tumbled their watry ruins on my shoulders, Bond. Oh, cousin, Charging my battered sides with troops of agues; From what a flight of honour hast thou checked And still to try these Romans, whom I found
Cur. See, lady,
Does this afilict you? Had the Romans cried this, (Which was not fear, nor flight) as valiant, And, as we have done theirs, sung out these As vigilant, as wise, to do and suffer,
fortunes, Ever advanced as forward as the Britons
Railed on our base condition, hooted at us, Their sleeps as short, their hopes as high as ours, Made marks as far as the earth was ours, to Ay, and as subtle, lary. 'Tis dishonour, And, followed, will be impudence, Bonduca, Nothing but sea could stop our flights, despised And grow to do belief, to taint these Romans.
us, Jlare not I seen the Britons
And held it equal, whether banquetting
Or beating of the Britons were more business, To beat a dozen boys, and then to breakfast, It would have galled you.
I'll tie you to a sword. Bond. Let me think we conquered.
Hengo. And what then, uncle? Car. Do; but so think, as we may be conquered; Car. Then you must kill, sir, the next valiant And, where we have found virtue, though in Roman, those,
Car. That's a noble boy! Come, worthy lady,
[Ereunt. Bond. No more; I see myself. Thou hast made me, cousin,
SCENE II. More than my fortunes durst; for they abused
Enter Junius and PETILLIUS.
Jun. Neither. For heaven's love, leave me! Car. Thy love and hate are both unwise ones, Pet. Drink? lady.
Jun. You tire me. Bond. Your reason ?
Pet. Conie, it is drink; I know it is drink. Nen. Is not peace the end of arms?
Jun. 'Tis no drink. Car. Not where the cause implies a general Pet. I say, it is drink; for what affliction conquest :
Can light so heavy on a soldier,
Jun. Prithee, Petillius
Pet. And, by mine honour, much drink, valiant After a day of blood, peace might be argued;
drink: But where we grapple for the ground we live on, Never tell me, thou shalt have drink. I see, The liberty we hold as dear as life,
Like a true friend, into thy wants; it is drink; The gods we worship, and next those, our ho- And, when I leave thee to a desolation, nours,
Especially of that dry nature, hang me. And with those swords, that know no end of battle: Jun. Why do you do this to me? Those men, beside themselves, allow no neigh
Pet. For I see, bour;
Although your modesty would fain conceal it, Those minds, that where the day is, claim inherit- Which sits as sweetly on a soldier ance,
As an old side-saddleAnd where the sun makes ripe thc fruits, their Jun. What do you see? harvest,
Pet. I see as fair as day, that thou wantest And where they march, but measure out more
Did I not find thee gaping, like an oyster To add to Rome, and here in the bowels on us; For a new tide? Thy very thoughts lie bare, It must not be. No, as they are our foes, Like a low ebb; thy soul, that rid in sack, And those, that must be so, untill we tire them, Lies moored for want of liquor. Do but see Let's use the peace of honour, that's fair dealing, Into thyself; for, by the gods, I do; But in our hands our swords. That hardy Roman, For all thy body's chapped and cracked like timber, That hopes to graft himself into my stock, For want of moisture : What is it thou wantest Must first begin his kindred under-ground,
there, Junius, And be allied in ashes,
An if it be not drinking? Bond. Caratach,
Jun. You have too much of it. As thou hast nobly spoken, shall be done;
Pet. No, it shall never be said in our country, And Hengo to thy charge I here deliver: Thou died of the chin-cough. Hear, thou nobic The Romans shall have worthy wars.
Roman, Car. They shall :
The son of her that loves a soldier, And, little sir, when your young bones grow stif- Hear what I promised for thee! thus I said: fer,
Lady, I take thy son to my companion; And when I see you able in a morning
Lady, I love thy son, thy son loves war,
The war loves danger, danger drink, drink dis- | (For understand them French beans, where the cipline,
fruits Which is society and lechery;
Are ripened like the people, in old tubs) These tró beget commanders : Fear not, lady; For mine own part, I say, I am starved already,
I Thy son shall lead.
Not worth another bean, consumed to nothing, Jun. 'Tis a strange thing, Petillius,
Nothing but flesh and bones left, miserable : That so ridiculous and loose a mirth
Now, if this musty provender can prick me Can master your affections.
To honourable matters of atchievement, gentlePet. Any mirth,
men, And any way, of any subject, Junius,
Why, there is the point. Is better than unmanly mustiness.
4 Sold. I'll fight no more. What harm is in drink?' in a good wholesome Pet. You'll hang then! wench?
A sovereign help for hunger. Ye eating rascals, I do beseech you, sir, what error? Yet
Whose gods are beef and brewis ! whose brave It cannot out of my head handsomely,
angers But thou wouldst fain be drunk: come, no more Do execution upon these, and chibbals ! fooling;
Ye dog's heads in the porridge-pot ! ye fight no The general has new wine, new come over.
more? Jun. He must have new acquaintance for it too, Does Rome depend upon your resolution For I will none, I thank ye.
For eating mouldy pye-crust? Pet. “None, I thank you ?
3 Sold. Would we had it ! A short and touchy answer!. None, I thank you! Judas. I may do service, captain. You do not scorn it, do you?
Pet. In a fish-market. Jun. Gods defend you, sir !
You, corporal Curry-comb, what will your fighting I owe him still more honour.
Profit the commonwealth? do you hope to triPet. None, I thank
umph? No company, no drink, no wench, “I thank you? Or dare your vamping valour, goodman Cobler, You shall be worse entreated, sir.
Clap a new sole to the kingdom? 'Sdeath, ye dogJun. Petillius,
whelps, As thou art honest, leave me !
You fight, or not fight? Pet. None, I thank you?
Judas. Captain ! A modest and a decent resolution,
Pet. Out, ye
flesh-flies! And well put on. Yes; I will leave you, Junius, Nothing but noise and nastiness! And leave you to the boys, that very shortly
Judas. Give us meat, Shall all salute you, by your new sirname,
Whereby we may do. Of Junius ‘None I thank you.” I would starve Pet. Whereby hangs your valour? now,
Judas. Good bits afford good blows. Hang, drown, despair, deserve the forks, lie open Pet. A good position; To all the dangerous passes of a wench, How long is it since thou eatest last? Wipe thy Bound to believe her tears, wed her aches,
mouth, Ere I would own thy follies. I have found you,
And then tell truth. Your lays, and out-leaps, Junius, haunts, and
Judas. I ve not eat to the purpose lodges;
Pet. “To the purpose !' what is that? half a I bave viewed you, and I have found you, by my cow and garlic? skill,
Ye rogues, my company eat turf, and talk not; To be a fool of the first head, Junius,
Timber they can digest, and fight upon it; And I will hunt you: You are in love, I know it; Old mats, and mud with spoons, rare meats. You are an ass, and all the cainp shall know it; Your shoes, slaves; A peevish idle boy, your dame shall know it; Dare ye cry out for hunger, and those extant? A wronger of my care, yourself shall know it. Suck your sword-hilts, ye slaves; if ye be valiant,
Honour will make them marchpane. “To the Enter Judas and four Soldiers.
purpose?' Judas. A bean? a princely diet, a full banquet, A grievous penance! Dost thou see that gentleTo what we compass.
man, 1 Sold. Fight like hogs for acorns ?
That melancholy monsieur ! 2. Sold. Venture our lives for pig-nuts?
Jun. Pray you, Petillius ! Pet. What ail these rascals?
Pet. He has not eat these three weeks. 3 Sold. If this hold, we are starved.
2 Sold. He has drunk the more then. Judas. For my part, friends,
3 Sold. And that is all one. Which is but twenty beans a day (a hard world Pet. Nor drunk nor slept these two months. For officers, and men of action!),
Judas. Captain, we do besecch you, as poor And those so clipt by master mouse, and rotten- soldiers,
Men, that have seen good days, whose mortal sto
SCENE III. machs May sometime feel afflictions [To Junius. Enter SUETONIUS, DEMETRIUS, Decius, drum Jun. This, Petillius,
and colours. Is not so nobly done.
Suet. Demetrius, is the messenger dispatched Pet. 'Tis common profit;
To Penius, to command him to bring up
Suet. And are the horse well viewed, we brought Will feed you up as fat as hens in the fore- from Mona? heads,
Dec. The troops are full and lusty. And make ye fight like fichoks; to him.
Suet. Good Petillius, Judas. Captain
Look to those eating rogues, that bawl for vicJun. Do you long to have your throats cut?
tuals, Pet. See what metal
And stop their throats a day or two: Provision It makes in him: Two meals more of this me- Waits but the wind to reach us. lancholy,
Pet. Sir, already And there lies Caratach.
I have been tampering with their stomachs, which Judas. We do beseech you
I find 2 Sold. Humbly besecchi
As deaf as adders to delays: Your clemency Jun. Am I only
Hath made their murmurs, mutinies; nay rebelBecome your sport, Petillius ?
lions; Judas. But to render
Now, an they want but mustard, they are in In way of general good, in preservation
uproars! Jun. Out of my thoughts, ye slaves !
No oil but Candy, Lusitanian figs, 4 Sold. Or rather pity
And wine from Lesbos, now can satisfy them; 3 Sold. Your warlike remedy against the maw- The British waters are grown dull and muddy,
The fruit disgustful; Orontes must be sought for, Judas. Or notable receipt to live by nothing. And apples from the happy isles; the truth is, Pet. Out with your table-books!
They are more curious now, in having nothing, Jun. Is this true friendship?"
Than if the sea and land turned up their treaAnd must my killing griefs make other's Maygames?
This lost the colonies, and gave Bonduca Stand from my sword's point, slaves ! your poor (With shame we must record it) time and strength starved spirits
To look into our fortunes; great discretion Can make me no oblations; else, oh, love, To follow offered victory; and last, full pride Thou proudly-blind destruction! I would send | To brave us to our teeth, and scorn our ruins. thee
Suet. Nay, chide not, good Petillius ! I confess Whole hetacombs of hearts, to bleed my sor- My will to conquer Mona, and long stay
To execute that will, let in these losses: Judas. Alas, he lives by love, sir. [Erit Junius. All shall be right again, and as a pine Pet. So he does, sir;
Rent from Oeta by a sweeping tempest, And cannot you do so too? All my company Jointed again, and made a mast, defies Are now in love; ne'er think of meat, nor talk Those angry winds, that split him ; so will I, Of what provant is : Ay me's ! and hearty hey hoes! Pieced to my never-failing strength and fortune, Are sallads fit for soldiers. Live by meat? Steer through these swelling dangers, plow their By larding up your bodies? 'tis lewd, and lazy,
prides up And shews ye merely mortal, dull, and drives ye And bear like thunder through their loudest temTo fight like camels, with baskets at your noses.
pests. Get ye in love ! handsomely
They keep the field still? Fall but in love now, as ye see example,
Dem. Confident and full. And follow it but with all your thoughts, proba- Pet. In such a number, one would swear they tum,
grew : There is so much charge saved, and your hunger's The hills are wooded with their partizans, ended.
[Drum afar off. And all the vallies overgrown with darts, Away! I hear the general. Get ye in love all,
are with rank rushes; no ground Up to the ears in love, that I may hear No more of these rude murmurings; and dis To charge upon, no room to strike. Say fortune creetly
And our endeavours bring us into them, Carry your stomachs, or I prophesy
They are so infinite, so ever-springing, A pickled rope will choke ye. Jog, and talk We shall be killed with killing; of desperate not!