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THE BLOODY BROTHER:
ROLLO, DUKE OF NORMANDY.
NORPRETT, a Doctor,
Ruske, a Friar, Five Cheating Rogues.
PIPEAU, a Boy,
Yeoman of the Cellar.
Lords, Sheriff, Guard, Officers, ana Boyg.
SOPHIA, Mother to the Dukes.
MATILDA, her Daughter.
Edith, Daughter to BALDWIX.
ACT I. SCENE 1.--Caen.–An Apartment in the Palace. Gis. I did ; and yet, that ever brothers should
Stand on more nice terms than sworn enemies Enter GISBERT and BALDWIN.
After a war proclaim'd, would with a stranger Bald. T'he brothers then are met?
Wrong the reporter's credit. They saluted Gis. They are, sir.
At distance, and so strong was the suspicion Baiii. 'Tis thought
Each had of other, that, before they durst They may be reconciled.
Embrace, they were by several servants search'd, Gis. 'Tis rather wish'd ;
As doubting conceal'd weapons; antidotes For such, whose reason doth direct their thoughts, Ta'en openly by both, fearing the room Without self-flattery, dare not hope it, Baldwin. Appointed for the interview was poison'd; The fires of love, which the dead duke believed The chairs and cushions, with like care, survey'd ; His equal care of both would have united,
And, in a word, in every circumstance,
So jealous on both parts, that it is more
Bald. Yet our best endeavours
Enter GRANDPREE and VERDON.
Buld. They are without my knowledge ;
They should express themselves.
The eldest brother, we'll be Rlians, Of a good man, and so his actions speak him. Who will maintain us, lads, as brave as Romans. Baid. But did you observe the many doubts and You stand for him? cautions
Verd. I do. The brothers stood upon before they met ?
Grandp. Why then, observe
How much the business, the so-long'd.for business, Trev. I kiss By men that are named from their swords, con- Your hands for the good offer : Here's another, cerns you.
The servant of your servant, which shall be proud Lechery, our common friend, so long kept under To be scoured in your sweet guts ; till when With whips, and beating fatal hemp, shall rise, Pray you command me. And Bawdry, in a French hood, plead before her; Grandp. Your idolater, sir. Where it shall be concluded, after twelve
(Exeunt all but GISBERT and Baldwix. Virginity shall be carted.
Gis. That ever such should hold the names of Verd. Excellent!
Or justice be held cruelty, when it labours [men, Grandp. And Hell but grant, tne quarrel that's To pluck such weeds up! between
Bald. Yet they are protected,
Aub. Is this a time to be spent thus, by such
When they that are the heads have fill'd the court To their most lousy fortunes.
With factions, a weak woman only left Bald. Here's a statesman !
To stay their bloody hands? Can her weak arms Grandp. A creditor shall not dare, but by Alone divert the dangers ready now To make demand of any debt; and that (petition, To fall on the commonwealth, and bury Only once every leap year, in which, if
The honours of it, leaving not the name The debtor may be won, for a French crown Of what it was? -Oh, Gisbert, the fair trials To pay a sous, he shall be register'd
And frequent proofs which our late master made, His benefactor.
Both of your love and faith, gave him assurence, Verd. The chancellor hears you.
To chuse you at his death a guardian, nay, Grandp. Fear not; I now dare speak as loud A father to his sons; and that great trust, as he,
How ill do you discharge! I must be plain, And will be heard, and have all I speak law.- That, at the best, you're a sad looker-on Have you no eyes? There is a reverence due Of those bad practices you should prevent.From children of the gown to men of action.
And where's the use of your philosophy Gis. How's this?
In this so needful time? Be not secure; Grandp. Even so: The times, the times are For, Baldwin, be assured, since that the princes changed ;
(When they ere young, and apt for any form) All business is not now preferr’d in parchmeni, Were given to your instruction, and grave orderNor shall a grant pass that wants this broad seal : 'Twill be expected that they should be good, (ing,
(Shews his suord. Or their bad manners will be imputed yours. This seal, do you see? Your gravity once laid Bald. 'Twas not in me, my lord, to alter My head and heels together in the dungeon,
nature. For cracking a scald officer's crown, for which Gis. Nor can my counsels work on them, that A time is come for vengeance, and expect it ; Vouchsafe me hearing.
[will not For know, you have not full three hours to live. Aub. Do these answers sort Gis. Yes, somewhat longer.
Or with your place, or persons, or your years? Grandp. To what end ?
Can Gisbert, being the pillar of the laws, Gis. To hang you :
See them trod under foot, or forced to serve Think on that, ruffian !
The princes' unjust ends, and, with a frown, Grandp. For you, schoolmaster,
Be silenced from exclaiming on the abuse ? You have a pretty daughter : Let me see ;
Or Baldwin only weep the desperate madness Near three o'clock, (by which time, I much fear, Of his seduced pupils ? see their minds, I shall be tired with killing some five hundred) (Which with good arts he laboured to build up, Provide a bath, and her to entertain me,
Examples of succeeding times) o'erturn'd And that shall be your ransom.
By undermining parasites ? No one precept,
Leading to any act or great or good,
But is forced from their memory ; in whose room Gis. More of the crew ?
Black counsels are received, and their retirements Grandp. What are you ? Rollians ?
And secret conference producing only Trev. No; this for Rollo, and all such as serve Devilish designs, a man would shame to father! him!
[Snaps his fingers. But I talk when I should do, and chide others We stand for Otto.
For that I now offend in.
Enter Rollo, with LATORCH, GRANDPREE, and VERDON ; The honour this day to be chronicled
and OTTO, with TREVILE and DUPRETE. The first men kill'd by Grandpree. You see this See 't confirmed! sword;
Now do, or never speak more! A pretty foolish toy, my valour's servant,
Gis. We are yours.And I may boldly say a gentleman,
Rollo. You shall know who I am! It having made, when it was Charlemaign's,
Ollo. I do; my equal! Three thousand knights; this, sir, shall cut your Rollo. Thy prince. Give way! Were we alone, And do you all fair service else.
I'd force thee,
In thy best blood to write thyself my subject, Otto. Which thy injustice
Will make thy enemy's. By the memory
Of him whose better part now suffers for thee, Gis. Dear lord !
Whose reverend ashes, with an impious hand,
Thou throw'st out to contempt, (in thy repining
Of what his last will, not thy merit, gave thee!
That e'er made up a tyrant, that thy breast,
But that they break forth, and, in thy owa werds, Otto. I need it not, and would scorn to receive, Discover what a monster they must serve Though offer'd, what I want not : Therefore know That shall acknowledge thee! From me, (though not deliver'd in great words, Rollo. Thou shalt not live Eyes red with rage, poor pride, and threatening To be so happy! action)
[He offers his sword at OTTO, the faction joining. Our father at his death, then, when no accent Aub. (Getting between the brothers.] Nor your (Wert thou a son) could fall from him in vain, Begin in murder. Duty, allegiance, [miserics Made us co-heirs, our part of land and honours And all respects of what you are, forsake me! Of equal weight; and, to see this confirm'd, Do ye stare on? Is this a theatre ? The oaths of these are yet upon record, [down Or shall these kill themselves, like to mad fencers, Who, though they should forsake me, and call To make ye sport? Keep them asunder, or, The plagues of perjury on their sinful heads, By Heaven, I'll charge on all! I would not leave myself.
Grandp. Keep the peace ! Trev. Nor will we see
I am for you, my lord; and, if you'll have me, The will of the dead duke infringed.
l'll act the constable's part. Lat. Nor I
Aub. Live I to see this? The elder robb’d of what's his right.
Will you do that your enemies dare not wish, Grandp. Nor you?
And cherish in yourselves those furies, which Let me take place !-I say, I will not see't ! Hell would cast out?-Do (I am ready) kill me, My sword is sharpest.
And these, that would fall willing sacrifices Aub. Peace, you tinder-boxes,
To any power that would restore your reason, That only carry matter to make a flame
And make ye men again, which now ye are not ! Which will consume you !
Rollo. These are your bucklers, boy! Rollo. You are troublesome :
Otto. My hindrances ;
[To BALDWIN. And, were I not confirm'd, my justice in This is no time for arguments ! My title
The taking of thy life could not weigh down Needs not your school-defences; but my sword, The wrong in shedding the least drop of blood With which the gordiau of your sophistry
Of these whose goodness only now protects thee, Being cut, shall shew th' imposture.- For your
Thou shouldst feel I in act would prove myself laws,
What thou in words dost labour to appear ! It is in me to change them as I please,
Rollo. Hear this, and talk again? I'li break I being above them, Gisbert! Would you have me
through all, protect them?
But I will reach thy heart. (Rushing upon OTTO. Let them now stretch their extremest rigour,
Olto. 'Tis better guarded.
Soph. Make way, or I will force it !- Who are For the sick state, the land's and people's quiet,
these? Cut off his head : And I'll give up my sword, My sons ? my shames ! Turn all your swords on And fight with them at a more certain weapon
me, To kill, and with authority.
And make this wretched body but one wound, Gis. Sir, I grant
So this unnatural quarrel finds a grave
Dare you remember that you had a mother,
For both your goods, and not with age) and yet
Life, nerves, and faculties, to use those weapons ; Bald. To which purpose,
And dare you raise them against her, to whom All that dare challenge any part in goodness You owe the means of being what you are? Will become suppliants to you.
Otto. All peace
meant to you.
Soph. Why is this war then?
Not set upon the rack? Your blood is mine,
[To GISBERT. Your danger's mine ; your goodness I should And thou thy double heart, thou popular fool,
[7'0 BALDWIN. And must be branded with those impious marks Your moral rules of justice, and her balance : You stamp on your own foreheads and on mine, I stand on my own guard !
If you go on thus. For my good name, therefore.
Though all respects of honour in yourselves Fires your ambition, 'tis still desperate madness
In cherishing the factions that destroy it :
Whose ruin both contend for.
Otlo. I desire
Rollo. And rather than posterity shall have cause With which the devil blinds you.
To say I ruin'd all, divide the dukedom: Otto. I begin
I will accept the moiety. To melt, I know not how.
Olto. I embrace it. Rollo. Mother, I'll leave you :
Soph. Divide me first, or tear me limb by limb, And, sir, be thankful for the time
And let them find as many several graves
And 'tis less sin, than thus to weaken it.
To hear it mention'd doth already make me And, rather than part thus, vouchsafe me hearing Envy my dead lord, and almost blaspheme As enemies !-How is my soul divided !
Those powers that heard my prayers for fruitfulness, My love to both is equal, as my wishes,
And did not with my first birth close my womb !
Or, being, had not been so worth my love,
Laid up in one, and fruitful Normandy
In this division had not lost her glories : And grow the elder in my love,
For as 'tis now, 'tis a fair diamond, Otto. The means
Which being preserved entire, exceeds all value, To be so happy?
But cut in pieces (though these pieces are Soph. This; yield up thy sword,
Set in fine gold by the best workman's cunning) And let thy piety give thy mother strength
Parts with all estimation : So this dukedom, To take that from thee, which no enemies' force As’tis yet whole, the neighbouring kings may covet, Could e'er despoil thee of !-[Orto gives up his But cannot compass ; which divided, will sword.] Why dost thou tremble,
Become the spoil of every barbarous foe And with a fearful eye, fix'd on thy brother,
That will invade it. Observ'st his ready sword, as bent against thee? Gis. How this works in both ! I am thy armour, and will be pierced through Bald. Prince Rollo's eyes have lost their fire. Ten thousand times, before I will give way
Gis. And anger, To any peril may arrive at thee;
That but even now wholly possess'd good Otto, Aud tberefore fear not.
Hath given place to pity. Ollo. 'Tis not for myself,
Aub. End not thus, But for you, mother: You are now engaged Madam, but perfect what's so well begun. In more than lies in your unquestion'd virtue ; Soph. I see in both fair signs of reconcilement; For, since you have disarm'd me of defence, Make them sure proofs they are so: The fates Should I fall now, though by his hand, the world
offer May say it was your practice.
To your free choice, either to live examples Soph. All worlds perish,
Of piety, or wickedness : If the latter Before my piety turn Treason's parent!
Blinds so your understanding, that you cannot Take it again, and stand upon your guard,
Pierce through her painted outside, and discover And, while your brother is, continue arm'd : That she is all deformity within, And yet this fear is needless; for I know
Boldly transcend all precedents of mischief, My Rollo, though he dares as much as man,
And let the last and the worst end of tyrannies, So tender of his yet untainted valour,
The murder of a mother, but begin So noble, that he dares do nothing basely.
The stain of blood you after are to heighten! You doubt him; he fears you; I doubt and fear
But if that Virtue, and her sure rewards, Both, for [the] other's safety, and not mine own.
Can win you to accept her for your guide, Know yet, my sons, when of necessity
To lead you up to Heaven, and there fix you You must deceive or be deceived, 'tis better The fairest stars in the bright sphere of honour; To suffer treason, than to act the traitor ;
Make me the parent of an hundred sons, And in a war like this, in which the glory
All brought into the world with joy, not sorrow, Is his that's overcome-Consider then
And every one a father to his country,
Rollo. Such, and so good, loud Fame for ever Desire of wealth? or whatsoever else
Bald. Ay, now they meet like brothers.
Grandp. Did ever such a hopeful business end [The Brothers throw down their swords, and embrace.
thus ? Gis. My heart's joy
Verd. 'Tis fatal to us all; and yet you, Grandpree, Flows through my eyes.
Have the least cause to fear. Aub. May never woman's tongue
Grandp. Why, what's my hope? Hereafter be accused, for this one's goodness! Verd. The certainty that you have to be hang'd :
Otto. If we contend, from this hour, it shall be You know the chancellor's promise. How to o'ercome in brotherly affection.
Grandp. Plague upon you ! Rollo. Otto is Rollo now, and Rollo, Otto; Verd. What think you of a bath, and a lord's Or, as they have one mind, rather one name. To entertain you ?
[daughter, From this atonement let our lives begin ;
Grandp. Those desires are off ; Be all the rest forgotten !
Frail thoughts ! All friends ; no Rollians now, nor Aub. Spoke like Rollo !
Otto's! Soph. And, to the honour of this reconcilement, The several courtesies of our swords and servants We all this night will, at a public feast,
Defer to after-consequence; let's make use With choice wines, drown our late fears, and with Of this night's freedom, a short parliament to us, Welcome our comforts.
[music In which it will be lawful to walk freely ; Bald. Sure and certain ones.
Nay, to our drink we shall have meat too, that's Soph. Supported thus, I am secure! Oh, sons, No usual business to the men o' th' sword. This is your mother's triumph!
Drink deep with me to-night, we shall to-morrow Rollo. You deserve it.
Or whip or hang the merrier. (Excunt all but GRANDPREE, VERDON, TREVILE, and Trev. Lead the way then.
SCENE I. - Another Room in the same. The noble vessel that your full soul sail'd in,
Ribb'd round with honours ? where is that? 'tis Enter LATORCR and ROLLO.
ruin'd, Lat. Why should this trouble you?
The tempest of a woman's sighs has sunk it, Rollo. It does, and must do,
Friendship (take heed, sir!) is a smiling harlot, Till I find ease.
That, when she kisses, kills! A solder'd friendship, Lat. Consider then, and quickly ;
Pieced out with promises ? Oh, painted ruin ! And, like a wise man, take the current with you, Rollo. Latorch, he is my
brother. Which, once turn'd head, will sink you. Blest Lat. The more doubted ; occasion
For hatred hatch'd at home is a tame tiger, Offers herself in thousand safeties to you;
May fawn and sport, but never leave his nature. Time standing still to point you out your purpose,
The jars of brothers, two such mighty ones, And Resolution (the true child of Virtue)
Are like a small stone thrown into a river, Ready to execute. What dull cold weakness The breach scarce heard, but view the beaten curHas crept into your bosom, whose mere thoughts, And you shall see a thousand angry rings (rent, Like tempests, ploughing up the sailing forests, Rise in his face, still swelling and still growing : Even with their swing were wont to shake down So jars circling distrust, distrusts breed dangers, What is't? your mother's tears ? [hazards ? And dangers death, the greatest extreme shadow, Rollo. Pr'ythee be patient.
Till nothing bound 'em but the shore, their graves. Lal. Her hands held up? her prayers, or her There is no manly wisdom, por no safety, curses?
In leaning to this league, this piece-patcht friend. Oh, power of pray'r and tears dropp'd by a woman! This rear’d-up reconcilement on a billow; (ship, Take heed the soldiers see it not ; 'tis miserable, Which, as it tumbles, totters down your fortune. In Rollo below miserable ; take heed your friends, Is’t not your own you reach at, law and nature The sinews of your cause, the strength you stir by, | Ushering the way before you? Is not he Take heed, I say, they find it not; take heed Born and bequeath'd your subject ? Your own repentance (like a passing-bell)
Rollo. Ha ! Too late and too loud, tell the world you are Lat. What fool perish'd !
Would give a storm leave to disturb his peace, What noble spirit, eager of advancement,
When he may shut the casement ? Can that man Whose employment is his plough ; what sword, Has won so much upon you by your pity, whose sharpness
And drawn so high, that like an ominous comet Waits but the arm to wield it; or what hope, He darkens all your light! can this couch'd lion After the world has blown abroad this weakness, (Though now he licks and locks up his fell paws. Will move again, or make a wish for Rollo ? Craftily humming like a cat to cozen you.)
Rollo. Are we not friends again, by each oath But (when ambition whets him, and time tits him) Our tongues the heralds of our hearts ? [ratified ? | Leap to his prey, and seized once, suck your heart Lat. Poor hearts then!
out ? Rollo. Our worthier friends
Do you make it conscience ? Lat. No friends, sir, to your honour;
Rollo. Conscience, Latorch! what's that? Friends to your fall! Where is your understanding, Lat. A fear they tie up fools in, Nature's covard,