« PreviousContinue »
DEMETRIUS, son to Tamora.
Appears, Act I. sc. 2. Act II. sc. 1; sc. 2; sc. 3; sc. 5.
Act IV. sc. 2; sc. 4. Act V. sc. 2.
AARON, a Moor.
Appears, Act I. sc. 2. Act II. sc. 1; sc. 3; sc. 4. Act III. sc. 1.
Act IV. sc. 2. Act V. sc. 1; sc. 3.
Appears, Act I. sc. 2.
Appears, Act V. sc. 3.
Appears, Act III, sc. 1.
Appears, Act IV. sc. 3; sc. 4.
Appear, Act V. sc. 1; sc. 3.
Appear, Act I. sc. 1; se. 2.
TAMORA, Queen of the Goths.
Appears, Act I. sc. 2. Act II. sc. 2; sc. 3; sc. 4. Act IV. sc. 4.
Act V, sc. 2; sc. 3.
LAVINIA, daughter to Titus Andronicus. Appears, Act I. sc. 2. Act II. sc. 2; sc. 3; sc. 5. Act III. sc. 1; sc. 2.
Act IV. sc. 1. Act V. sc. 2; sc. 3.
Appears, Act IV. sc. 2.
A Black Child.
Appears, Act IV. sc. 2. Act V. sc. 1.
Kinsmen of Titus, Senators, Tribunes, Officers, Soldiers, and Attendants.
SCENE,- ROME, AND THE COUNTRY NEAR IT.
The earliest edition, of which any copy is at present known, of 'Titus Andronicus,' appeared in quarto, in 1600, under the following title :
The most lamentable Romaine Tragedie of Titus Andronicus. As it hath sundry times been playde by the Right Honourable the Earle of Pembroke, the Earle of Darbie, the Earle of Sussex, and the Lord Chamberlaine theyre Servants. At London, printed by J. R. for Edward White, 1600. In the folio collection of 1623 it appears under the title of The lamentable Tragedy of Titus Andronicus.'
Flourish. Enter the Tribunes and Senators, aloft: and then enter SATURNINUS and his Followers at one door, and BASSIANUS and his Followers at the other, with daum and colours.
Sat. Noble patricians, patrons of my right,
Defend the justice of my cause with arms ;
And, countrymen, my loving followers,
Plead my successive title with your swords :
I am his first-born son, that was the last
That wore the imperial diadem of Rome :
Then let my father's honours live in me,
Nor wrong mine age with this indignity.
Bass. Romans, friends, followers, favourers of my right,
If ever Bassianus, Cæsar's son,
Were gracious in the eyes of royal Rome,
Keep then this passage to the Capitol ;
And suffer not dishonour to approach
Th’imperial seat; to virtue consecrate,
To justice, continence, and nobility:
But let desert in pure election shine ;
And, Romans, fight for freedom in your choice.
Enter MARCUS ANDRONICUS, aloft, with the crown.
MARC. Princes, that strive by factions and by friends
Ambitiously for rule and empery,
Know that the people of Rome, for whom we stand
A special party, have by common voice,
In election for the Roman empery,
Chosen Andronicus, surnamed Pius,
For many good and great deserts to Rome:
A nobler man, a braver warrior,
Lives not this day within the city walls.
He by the senate is accited home,
From weary wars against the barbarous Goths,
That with his sons, a terror to our foes,
Hath yok'd a nation strong, train'd up in arms.
Ten years are spent, since first he undertook
This cause of Rome, and chastised with arms
Our enemies' pride : five times he hath return'd
Bleeding to Rome, bearing his valiant sons
In coffins from the field;
And now at last, laden with honour's spoils,
Returns the good Andronicus to Rome,
Renowned Titus, flourishing in arms.
Let us entreat, -by honour of his name,
Whom worthily you would have now succeed,
And in the Capitol and senate's right,
Whom you pretend to honour and adore,—
That you withdraw you, and abate your strength;
your followers, and, as suitors should,
deserts in peace and humbleness. Sat. How fair the tribune speaks to calm my thoughts!
Bass. Marcus Andronicus, so I do affy
In thy uprightness and integrity,
And so I love and honour thee and thine,
Thy noble brother Titus and his sons,
And her to whom my thoughts are humbled all,
Gracious Lavinia, Rome's rich ornament,
That I will here dismiss my loving friends ;
And to my fortunes and the people's favour
Commit my cause in balance to be weigh’d.
[Exeunt Followers of BASSIANUS.
Sat. Friends, that have been thus forward in my right,
I thank you all, and here dismiss you all ;
And to the love and favour of my country
Commit myself, my person, and the cause.
(Eseurt Followers of SATURNINUS.
Rome, be as just and gracious unto me,
As I am confident and kind to thee.
Open the gates and let me in.
Bass. Tribunes, and me, a poor competitor.
[Flourish. They go up into the Senate-house.
Enter a Captain, and others.
CAP. Romans, make way: the good Andronicus,
Patron of virtue, Rome's best champion,
Successful in the battles that he fights,
With honour and with fortune is return'd.
From where he circumscribed with his sword,
And brought to yoke, the enemies of Rome.
[Sound drums and trumpets, and then enter two of Titus' Sons. After them two Men bearing a coffin covered with black : then two other Sons. After them Titus ANDRONICUS ; and then Tamora, the queen of Goths, and her two Sons, CHIRON and DEMETRIUS, with AARON the Moor, and others, as many as can be. They set down the coffin, and TITUS speaks.
Tit. Hail, Rome, victorious in thy mourning weeds !
Lo, as the bark that hath discharg'd her fraught,
Returns with precious lading to the bay
From whence at first she weigh'd her anchorage,
Cometh Andronicus, bound with laurel boughs,
To re-salute his country with his tears,
Tears of true joy for his return to Rome.
Thou great defender of this Capitol,
Stand gracious to the rites that we intend !
Romans, of five-and-twenty valiant sons,
Half of the number that king Priam had,
Behold the poor remains, alive, and dead !
These that survive let Rome reward with love :
These that I bring unto their latest home,
With burial amongst their ancestors.
Here Goths have given me leave to sheath my sword.
Titus, unkind, and careless of thine own,
Why suffer'st thou thy sons, unburied yet,
To hover on the dreadful shore of Styx ?
Make way to lay them by their brethren.
[They open the tomb.
There greet in silence, as the dead are wont,
And sleep in peace, slain in your country's wars :
O sacred receptacle of my joys,
Sweet cell of virtue and nobility,
How many sons of mine hast thou in store,
That thou wilt never render to me more !
LUC. Give us the proudest prisoner of the Goths,
That we may hew his limbs, and on a pile,
Ad manes fratrum, sacrifice his flesh,
Before this earthly prison of their bones ;
That so the shadows be not unappeas'd,
Nor we disturb’d with prodigies on earth.
Tit. I give him you, the noblest that survives,
The eldest son of this distressed queen.
Tam. Stay, Roman brethren, gracious conqueror,
Victorious Titus, rue the tears I shed,
A mother's tears in passion for her son :
And if thy sons were ever dear to thee,
O think my son to be as dear to me.
Sufficeth not, that we are brought to Rome
To beautify thy triumphs, and return
Captive to thee, and to thy Roman yoke ;
But must my sons be slaughter'd in the streets,
For valiant doings in their country's cause ?
O, if to fight for king and commonweal
Were piety in thine, it is in these.
Andronicus, stain not thy tomb with blood.
Wilt thou draw near the nature of the gods ?
Draw near them then in being merciful :
Sweet mercy is pobility's true badge,
Thrice-noble Titus, spare my first-born son.
Tır. Patient yourself, madam, and pardon me.
These are the brethren, whom you Goths bebeld
Alive and dead, and for their brethren slain
Religiously they ask a sacrifice :
To this your son is mark'd, and die he must,
'T appease their groaping shadows that are gone.