Imágenes de páginas

He's gone, and who knows how he may report
Thy words by adding fuel to the flame?

Expect another message more imperious, · More lordly thundering than thou well wilt bear.

· Samson. Shall I abuse this consecrated gift
Of strength, again returning with my hair
After my great transgression, so requite
Favour renew'd, and add a greater sin
By prostituting holy things to idols ?
A Nazarite in place abominable
Vaunting my strength in honour to their Dagon!
Besides, how vile, contemptible, ridiculous,
What act more execrably unclean, profane?
Chorus. Yet with this strength thou sery'st the

Idolatrous, uncircumcis'd, unclean.

Samson. Not in their idol-worship, but by labour
Honest and lawful to deserve my food
Of those, who have me in their civil power."
Chorus. Where the heart joins not, outward acts

defile not.
Samson. Where outward force constrains, the

1 sentence holds.
But who constrains me to the temple of Dagon,
Not dragging? the Philistian lords command.
Commands are no constraints. If I obey them,
I do it freely, venturing to displease
God for the fear of Man, and Man prefer, .

Vant-brace and greves, and gauntlet, add thy spear,
A weaver's beam, and seven-times-folded shield;
I only with an oaken staft will meet thee,
And raise such outeries on thy clatter'd iron,
Which long shall not withhold me from thy head,
That in a little time, while breath remains thee,
Thou oft shalt wish thyself at Gath, to boast
Again in safety what thou would'st have done
To Samson, but shalt never see Gath more.
Harapha. Thou durst not thus disparage glorious

Which greatest heroes have in battle worn,
Their ornament and safety, had not spells
And black enchantment, some magician's art,
Arm’d thee or charm’d thee strong, which thou from

Heaven Feignd'st at thy birth, was given thee in thy hair, Where strength can least abide, though all thy hairs Were bristles rang'd like those that ridge the back Of chaf'd wild boars, or ruffled porcupines. .

Samson. I know no spells, use no forbidden arts. My trust is in the living God, who gave me At my nativity this strength, diffus’d No less through all my sinews, joints, and bones, Than thine, while I preserv'd these locks unshorn, The pledge of my unviolated vow. For proof hereof, if Dagon be thy God, Go to his temple, invocate his aid


With solemnest devotion, spread before him
How highly it concerns his glory now
To frustrate and dissolve these magick spells,
Which I to be the power of Israel's God,
Avow, and challenge Dagon to the test,
Offering to combat thee his champion bold,
With the utmost of his Godhead seconded :
Then thou shalt see, or rather, to thy sorrow,
Soon feel, whose God is strongest, thine or mine.

Harapha. Presume not on thy God, whate'er i he be; ....

... Thee he regards not, owns not, hath cut off Quite from his people, and deliver'd up Into thy enemies' hand, permitted them To put out both thine eyes, and fetter'd send thee Into the common prison, there to grindl e ? Among the slaves and asess thy comrades,... As good for nothing else; no better service With those thy boisterous locks, no worthy match For valour to assail, nor by the sword ror;;? Of noble warriour, so to stain his honour, ori But by the barber's razor best subdued....

Samson. All these indignities, for such they are From thine, these evils I deserve, and more, til Acknowledge them from God inflicted on me that Justly, yet despair not of his final pardon, Bergarten Whose ear is ever open, and his eye Graçious to re-admit the suppliant; E rasto?

In confidence whereof I once again

Defy thee to a trial of mortal fight, • By combat to decide whose God is God, Thine, or whom I with Israel's sons adore; Harapha. Fair honour that thou dost thy God,

in trasting D He will accept thee to defend his cause, 2 A Murderer, a Revolter, and a Robber! Samson. Tongue-doughty Giants how dost thout prove me these d

, Harapha. Is not thy nation subject to bur lords ? Their magistrateś confess'd it, when they took thee As a league-breaker; and deliver'd bound Into our hands : for hadst thou not committed Notorious murder on those thirty men At Ascalon, who never did thee harm, . Thén like a robber stripp'dst them of their robes? The Philistines, when thou hadst broke the league, Went up with armed powers thee only seeking, To others did no violence nor spoil.

Samson. Among the daughters of the Philistinés I chose a wife, which argued me no foe; And in your city held my nuptial feast : But your ill-meaning politician lords, Under pretence of bridal friends and guests, Appointed to await mê thirty spies, Who, threatening eruel death, constrairi'd the bride To wring from me, and tell to them, my secrets

That solv'd the riddle whieh I had propos'd.
When I perceiv'd all set on enmity,
As on my enemies, wherever chanc'd,
I us’d hostility, and took their spoil.
To pay my underminers in their coin.
My nation was subjected to your lords:
It was the force of conquest; force with force
Is well ejected when the conquer'd can.
But I, a private person, whom my country
As a league-breaker gave up bound, presum'd:
Single rebellion, and did hostile acts... !?
I was po private, but a person rạis'

With strength sufficient, and command from Heaven,
Tą free my country; if their servile minds....
Me, their deliverer sent, would not receive,.
But to their masters gave me up for nought,
The upworthier they; whence to this day they serve,
I was to do my part from Heaven assign’d,
And had perform'd it, if my known offence
Had ngt disabled me, not all your force :
These shifts refuted, answer thy appellant,
Though by his blindness maim'd for high attempts,
Who now defies thee thrice to single fight, .
As a petty enterprise of small enforce.

Harapka. With thee ! a man condemn’d, a slave

. ? inroll d, c,1 1, Due by the law to capital punishment ! To fight with thee ng man of arms will deign.

« AnteriorContinuar »