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Scene, an Apartment.

BRIANTHE discovered.
Bri. How wearily the heavy hours drag on,
When expectation chides the wings of Time.
A short half hour he said. An hour is past,
And yet he comes not. Oh! heedless rover,
Could thou but see
Who sends abroad for thee her waking thoughts,
How 'her heart beats with mingled hope and fear
At every footfall: to her arms thou’dst turn
With sweet remorse, and ever harbour there.
I'll softly steal, and see if sleep possess
My weary travellers.

(Goes into the chamber and returns.
Sweetly they rest in other's arms enfolded,
Rock'd by their own commotion into peace.
Sleep triumphs over sorrow : round her neck
Her infant smiling in sweet dreams beside her,
Hath thrown his little arm, as thíther drawn
By nature's impulse, as the sweet-pea blossom
Curls round its native prop. I cannot sleep,
Yet I have heard the bosom void of guilt

Can on the sky-roof?d mountain find repose,
On the bare heath sleep out the wintry storm,
And make a pillow of the jagged flint,
Soft as young cygnets down. I cannot sleep,
Yet guilt I know not, and the healing balm
Of inward quiet ne'er shall know again.
Hark, 'twas some footing sure — no, all is still,
As when the nightingale has made a pause,
Leaving the night's ear void again ? 'tis he :
There is more welcome music in his foostep
Than the world's minstrelsy. (Montano enters.) Mon-

tano here?
Mont. Why dost thou start ? Am I so hideous, lady,
That at the sight thy nature shrinks abhorrent,
And the affrighted blood steals from thy cheek,
As at a church-yard apparition.

If here, you come
Thro' zeal of friendship at this lonely hour,
Your visit, tho’ untimely, yet is welcome:
But, if you would misuse the night's solemnity,
To tell again your phrenzied dream of lust,
And rudely wound a modest matron's ear -
Your absence had been kinder:
Thou comest like the demon of the storm,
Rejoicing in the mischief he has spread.

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Thy look is desolation, but thy touch A withering blast to nature. . Mont.

Why I come,
Proud beauty, you shall know: but gather this
I came not to fool time away with words,
I came not to intreat, but to enjoy.
I did not come to woo thee like the dove,
But like the angry pard to spring upon thee.
Therefore these looks of scorn are out of season.
'Tis not the fierce displeasure of thine eye,
That lowers from out those over-jutting brows,
Thy tone imperious, or thy swelling lip,
Can shake me from my purpose. Mark me, lady!
Revenge can diet on a woman's scorn.

Bri. I do conjure you, as you are a man,
From woman's breasts have drawn humanity;
Damn not thyself and me.

* Very woman to the last.
When the loud fury of your words are vain,
You try with tears to soften me to folly.
I am not to be moy’d; and thus I seize,
Cold stubborn fair one —

Oh, for mercy's sake! Mont. No struggling, 'tis in vain. Thy chamber,

lady? This way.

Bri. Is there no help? Help! murder ! help Oh, Valletort! where art thou ? Murder ! help

(As he is forcing her into the chamber, URANE

enters.) Bri. Kind heav'n, I thank thee: this is thy o'er


Almar and Valletort afterwards enter.The remainder of this piece is very imperfect. Montano dies; and Valletort and Brianthe are re-united. It was not without reason that the author complained of the difficulty he experienced in constructing a dramatic fable. It is, however, worthy of remark, that within four years from the date of this piece, The Curfew was produced.





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