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The
Adulateur.

A
Tragedy,
As it is now acted in
Upper Servia.

“Then let us rise my friends, and strive to fill This little interval, this pause of life, (While yet our liberty and fates are doubtful) With resolution, friendship, Roman bravery, And all the virtues we can crowd into it; That Heav’n may say it ought to be prolong’d.” Cato’s Tragedy

Boston:
Printed and sold at the New Printing-Office,
Near Concert-Hall.
1773MDCCLXXIII.

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Dramatis Personæ.

Rapatio,―― Governor of Servia.

Limput,―― Married to Rapatio’s Sister.

Hazlerod,―― L.C. Justice. Brother to Limput.

Dupe,―― Secretary of State.

P――p,―― An Officier.

Gripeall,―― Captain Bashaw.

Bagshot,―― Aga of the Janizarie.

Meagre,―― Brother to Rapatio.

E――r,―― A Friend to Government.

Brutus,―― Chief of the Patriots.

Junius,――

Cassius,――

Portius,――

Patriots.

Marcus, a Young Patriot.

Citizens

Senators,

Ghosts.――

The
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The Adulateur.

Act I. Scene I.

A street in Servia. Enter Brutus and Cassius

Brutus

Is this the once fam’d mistress of the north

The sweet retreat of freedom ? dearly purchas’d!

A clime matur’d with blood; from whose
rich soil,

Has sprung a glorious harvest.—Oh! my friend,

The change how drear! the sullen ghost of bondage,

Stalks full in view—already with her pinions,

She shades the affrighted land—th’insulting soldiers

Tread down our choicest rights; while hoodwink’d
justice

Drops her scales, and totters from her basis.

Thus torn with nameless wounds, my bleeding
country

Demands a tear—that tear I’ll freely give her.

Cassius

Oh ! Brutus, our noble ancestors,

Who liv’d for freedom, and for freedom dy’d:

Who A3v 6

Who scorn’d to roll in affluence, if that state

Was sicken’d o’er with the dread name of slaves:

Who in this desart stock’d with beasts and men,

Whose untam’d souls breath’d nought but slaughter

Grasp’d at freedom, and they nobly won it;

Then smil’d and dy’d contented, Should these
heroes,

Start from their tombs and view their dear possessions,

The price of so much labor, cost and blood,

Gods! what a pang ’twould cost them; yes, they’d
weep,

Nor weep in vain. That good old spirit,

Which warm’d them once, would rouse to noble
actions.

E’re they would cringe they’d bathe their swords in
blood;

In heaps they’d fall, and on the pile of freedom,

Expire like heroes, or they’d save their country.

Brutus

Oh ! Cassius, you inspire a noble passion,

It glows within me, and every pulse I feel,

Beats high for glory.—I sprang, and Oh ! it fires me,

I sprang from men, who fought, who bled for
freedom:

From men, who in the conflict laugh’d at danger :

Struggl’d like patriots, and through seas of blood,

Waded to conquest.—I’ll not disgrace them.

I’ll show a spirit worthy of my fire.

Tho’ malice dart her stings;—tho’ poverty

Stares full upon me;—tho’ power with all her thundder,

Rolls o’er my head,—thy cause my bleeding country

I’ll never leave—I’ll struggle hard for thee,

and if I perish, perish like a freeman.

Cassius

You’re not alone—there are, I know, ten
thousand,

Ne’er bow’d the knee to idol power—Repeated insults

Have rous’d the most lethargic. E’en the old man

Whose blood has long creep’d sluggish thro’ his
vains,

Now feels his warmth renew’d—his pulse beat quick—

His eyes dart fire—he grasps his sword,

And A4r 7

And calls on youth to aid him—yea my son,

My little son, who sportive climbs my knees,

Fondly intreats my aid, and lisps out freedom.

But see our friends—their generous bosoms glow.

With manly Sentiment:—I will accost them.

Patriots hail!――

Enter Junius and Portius.

Portius

All hail my friends!――

Well met I trust, and with one heart and mind,

We have lately seen a piece of pageantry,

Near Imports mansion, big with mighty meaning.

The period dawns, when all those parricides,

Who long had sported with their country’s, ruin.

Begin to tremble—Shame, contempt croud on them.

The boy despises, and the stripling smiles.

Brutus

’Tis well—here lies my hope:—let but a
sense,

A manly sense of injur’d freedom wake them.

The day’s half won. The cold inactive spirit

That slumbers in its chains,—at this I tremble.

Oh ! patriots rouse. The distant branches lop’d,

The root now groans—let not the thought of power,

Ungenerous thought! freeze up the genial current.

’Tis not a conquest, merely, leads to fame――

Th’ attempt enobles. Yes, the suffering patriot

Tow’rs while he bleeds, and triumphs while he dies.

Junius

When Brutus speaks, old age grows young.

Whatever right I’ve lost! I’ve still a dagger,

and have a hand to wield it—’tis true it shakes—

With age it shakes: Yet in the cause of freedom,

It catches vigor. You shall find it strike

The tyrant from his Throne.

Brutus

Thou good old man.

Thy words a noble ardor kindle in me.

Come patriots, let the bright example fire you.

By all that’s sacred ! by our father’s shades !

Illustrious shades ! who hover o’er this country.

And watch like guardian angels o’er its rights :

By A4v 8

By all that blood, that precious blood they spilt,

To gain for us the happiest boon of Heaven:

By life—by death—or still to catch you more,

By Liberty, by Bondage. I conjure you.

All

Nor is it vain. We swear, e’er we’ll be slaves,

We’ll pour our choicest blood. No terms shall
move us.

These streets we’ll pave with many an human skull.

Carnage, blood and death, shall be familiar,

Tho’ Servia weep her desolated realms.

Brutus

’Tis bravely spoke. And now thou power
supreme !

Who hatest wrong, and wills creation happy,

Hear and revenge a bleeding country’s groans;

Teach us to act with firmness and with zeal:

’Till happier prospects gild the gloomy waste.

While from our fate shall future ages know,

Virtue and freedom are thy care below. Exeunt.

Scene II.

A Chamber in Repatio’sRapatio’s House. Enter Rapatio, solus.

Rapatio,――[Speaker label not present in original source]

Hail happy day! In which I find my wishes,

My gayest wishes crown’d. Brundo retir’d,

The stage is clear. Whatever gilded prospects

E’er swam before me—Honor, places, pensions—

All at command—Oh! my full heart! ’twill burst!

Now patriots think, think on the past and tremble.

Think on that gloomy night, when, as you phras’d it,

Indignant justice rear’d her awful front,

And frown’d me from her—when ten thousand
monsters

Wretches who only claim’d mere outward form,

To give a sanction to humanity

Broke my retirement—rush’d into my chamber

And rifled all my secrets—then flung me helpless,

Naked and destitute, to beg protection.

Hell B1r 9

Hell! what a night was this—and do they think,

I’ll e’er forget such treatment! No. Ye gods—

If there is any secret sympathy,

Which born, and bred together, they may claim,

I give it to the winds—out! out! vile passion,

I’ll trample down the choicest of their rights,

and make them curse the hour that gave me
birth;

That hung me up a meteor in the sky,

Which from its tail, shook pestilence a nd ruin.

But here comes Dupe, a creature form’d by nature

To be a sycophant—Tho I despis’d him,

Yet he’s too necessary for my purpose,

To be relinquish’d—I’ll take him by the hand—

Give him a bow, and buoy up his hopes—

He’s mine for ever.――

Enter Dupe.

Dupe

It gives me highest joy to see your honor

Servia’s sole ruler—what tho’ not complete,

And primly seated in the chair of power,

Yet all the reins of government you hold.

And should that happy period e’er arrive

When Brundo quits for thee entire possession,

Remember Dupe, and think on former friendships.

Rapatio

I’ll not forget. And well thou said I held

The rains of power; and I will make them feel it.

And, happy for me, all the posts of honor,

Are fill’d with beings wholly at my service.

The b――h what are they ? Creatures of my own;

Who if I spoke, would mangle law and reason,

And nobly trample on the highest ties.

And hence the soldier, whose security,

Is the prime basis of my government,

May scoff, insult, nay, in the face of day,

Abuse the citizens, yet go unpunish’d.

P――p too, an happy creature this

To serve a turn—tho’ men whose breath was
slaughter,

Should urge the meanest of our servants on–

To bathe their daggers in their masters blood,

B P――p B1v 10

P――p stays, proceedings—At my nod,

Will break thro’ every tie of law and justice,

And bid those monsters go—In short all orders

Obey my summons, and perform my will.

Dupe

What halycon days!—And have I liv’d to
see them?

And share them too? enough—I’ve liv’d my day.

Rapatio

But tell me Dupe, they say these muttering
wretches,

Grow fond of riot, and with pageantry;

Do ridicule the friends of government.

Dupe

The thing is fact—The worthy citizen

Finds property precarious—all things tend

To anarchy and ruin.

Rapatio

I’ll make the scoundrels know who sways
the sceptre,

Before I’ll suffer this, I’ll throw the state,

In dire confusion, nay I’ll hurl it down,

And bury all things in one common ruin.

O’er fields of death, with hastning step I’ll speed,

And smile at length to see my country bleed:

From my tame heart the pang of virtue sling,

And mid the general flame like Nero sing.— Exeunt.

End of the first Act.

Act II. Scene I.

Enter Brutus and Cassius.

Brutus.

Ha! is it come to this?—and did you see it?

Cassius

I saw it—and could paint a scene of woe,

Would make the sun collect his scatter’d rays

And shroud himself in night—While numbers
crouded,

Thoughtless of harm to see the pageantry,

And B2r 11

And sportive youths play’d gamesome in the street,

That wretch, that cursed E――r,

Whom long this country blus’hd to own her son—

Urg’d on by hell and malice, unprovok’d――

Hurl’d thro’ the croud promiscuous death and
slaughter――

One youth, unhappy victim fell――he lies

Reeking in gore, and bites the hated ground.

Brutus

Oh! this poor land—what scenes await it!

This is the dawn――if murders open here,

What will the day disclose! Oppression strews

Her earlist paths with blood—gods! are we men?

And stand we still and bear it? where’s our sense?

Our ancient sense of freedom? even the boy,

Should we be tame, would feel his pulse beat high:

And nobly grasp the sword he scarce could wield.

Cassius

It must be so—we’ll right ourselves or die—

But what approaches here?

Enter Portius and a croud.

Portius

who’s there?

Brutus

a friend.

Portius

Ha! Brutus, take the sword and bravely
plunge it!

Brutus

In whom?

Portius

a wretch.

Brutus

a wretch?

Portius

a murderer.

Let not one motive damp thy rising ardor――

The parent weeps his child, the staff of age,

Untimely slain. Pity, revenge—rage—fury――

Ten thouusand boistrous passions glow within me

And call for blood. Not this poor wretch alone—

The grand prime spring shall fall a sacrifice.

Tho’ all his legions fondly hover’d round him.

I’d cut my way thro’ all――and this my sword

Drench in the tyrant’s blood, then on the pile

Of bleeding freedom, pour the rich libation.

Brutus

Stay, Portius, stay—let reason calm thy
passions.

Let us not fully by unmeaning actions,

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The cause of injur’d freedom; this demands

A cool, sedate and yet determin’d spirit

Portius

Brutus, thy mind compos’d can reason
well,

But when I see even innocence itself

Can find no shelter—my pulse beat high!

I’m all on fire?――speak to the distant winds!

Command a storm! or lull an hurricane!――

Brutus

But hear me, Portius, one word more I
ask thee.

You know the foes of freedom, eagle-ey’d,

Watch every deed. They wish to see us act

Up to the character, they long have painted.

Headstrong――rebellious――factious――uncontroul’d,—

Rather to justice drag the murderer.

Portius

Brutus you know, who fill that sacred
bench.

Rapatio’s tools, mere creatures of the tyrant.

Depend upon’t they’ll vilely wrest the law,

And save the villain—yes, depend upon’t

Should he be brought before that brib’d tribunal,

They’ll plead his cause, and save the murderer’s
life.――

Brutus

Well Portius, that’s with them.

We’ve done as patriot’s ought—like men who scorn
life.

The name of faction— men who nobly act

From sense of honor. If they save the villain

Theirs is the guilt of blood: and he who holds

Impartial justice, will demand an answer

Portius

’Tis well—you’ve charmed my angry soul
to rest

I’ll go and soothe the boisterous multitude,

Calm all their souls, and make them act like freemen.

Exit.

Brutus

Oh Cassius—Oh! my friend—my heart
It bleeds,

it bleeds to hear the groans of gasping freedom.

Could but my life atone and save my country,

Pleas’d cou’d I bare this breast, and die in transport.

Cassius

No Brutus, live to rescue virtue.

For this ten-thousand motives croud upon us.

Our fathers seem to murmur in their tombs,

And urge us on, Last night as I lay musing,

On B3r 13

On evils past, and trembling at the future

A gleam of light broke in on my retirement

My father’s ghost burst on my startled fancy.

And froze the current of my blood!—he star’d

Horrid he star’d—then frown’d and spoke in thun,
der,

“Cassius attend. Where is that noble spirit,

I once instilled—behold this fair possession

I struggled hard to purchase, fought and bled

To leave it your’syours unsullied—Oh defend it,

Nor lose it but in death.” he spake and vanish’d

Yes, I reply’d, thou injur’d shade, I will defend;

And e’er I’ll lose it meet ten thousand deaths

Brutus

Nor these alone—all those who fought for
freedom,

Chide the unmanly sloth—mean while, my friend,

Let’s see the mournful obsequies perform’d

Give to the dust, the relics of a youth,

Untimely crop’d, and lost—like some gay flow’r

Which vernal zephyrs fan’d and gentle sun beams

Wak’d to life—awhile, it chear’d our sight

And promis’d—pleasure when the rigorous north

Blasted its bloom, and froze up every sweet,

Let’s pay this last sad tribute to the dead,

Together in the funereal pomp let’s go

Share in theretheir grief, and join the general woe.

Exeunt

Scene II.

Enter Bagshot, and Rapatio

Bagshot

It must not—shall not be—the dirty scoundrels

Foaming with passion animate each other—

Abuse my men and trample on my bands.

Rapatio

Insulting dogs! and are they wrought to
this?

’Tis well—a scene now opens to my mind.

And hark’ee Bagshotshould these high swoln
wretches

Again insult, remember you are soldiers—

Bagshot. B3v 14

Bagshot

Well then, since you approve,

I’ll give those orders, which I dare not do

By my mere motion,

Repeated wrongs have blown up all their courage.

They stretch like steeds, and snuffs the distant
battle;

And like the vulture, couch in dreadful ambush

And wait a day of carnage—sire, adieu—

Exeunt.

SeneScene III.

Changes to a street in Servia. Enter Brutus, solus.

Brutus,――[Speaker label not present in original source]

To be the sport of every flying moment.—

The butt at which old time may throw his
shafts

And vex him oft—light tennis ball of fortune—

This is thy fate, O man. Weak helpless creature,

Design’d to crawl with other little reptiles

Round this dull globe of earth—to sport a while,

And wanton in the sun shine of an hour.

Frolic and gay he trifles on the stage,

Nor sees the various ills behind the scene.

These dart their baneful stings unnotic’d at him

And spoils his mirth—misfortune treads on joy,

And every hour comes loaded with new sorrows.

This I experience—each succeeding day

Affords fresh scenes of woe—not only one

Deaf to the call of nature pleading in him

Imbrues his hands in blood—ten thousand join him.

The soldier heated by the curs’d example,

His poinard whets,

And swear to fill these streets with blood and
slaughter,

Enter Cassius in much agitation.

Cassius

Oh! Brutus, what a scene! the hour is come—

Our fates are at a crisis—Servia shakes—

Thro’ this once happy seat of gaiety and pleasure

The B4r 15

The soldier foams, and belches nought but slaughter.

This fatal night, the plan before concerted,

Bursts into flames—the virtuous citizen

Flies from one death; and rushes on another.

Hard by I saw a little innocent,

Whose quiv’ring tears might make e’en Nero weep,

Clasp the rough knees of the inhuman ruffian.

And beg for pity—but he begs in vain—

High o’er his head the sabre dreadful gleam’d

He fell and spake no more—but hark!—

a confus’d sound of voices, clashing of arms, with
freequent oaths is heard.

It must be fo――

Brutus, the citizen now falls a victim

To brutal malice—ha!—a gun—another—

And another still—O my poor country,

When will thy troubles end!――

Enter Junius Portius and others, in much agitation.

Junius

Th’ inhuman soldiers stamp he hostile
ground,

His garments stain’d with blood,

The streets of Servia sweat with human gore.

Oh! Brutus, I’m on fire—hand me my sword

And give me to the foe—

And if we die—let’s die like men

And bravely fall expiring on the foe.—

That man dies well who sheds his blood for freedom.

Portius

Oh! had you seen promiscuous slaughter
hurl’d—

Or had you heard the groans of innocence,

’Twould rouze you into action.

While I can boast one short reprieve from death,

I’ll breathe revenge. This unstain’d guiltless dagger

Shall sweat with blood, and rust with human gore.

Brutus

’Tis well—there Portius spoke like himself,

Let’s wake the latent seeds of honor into action.

What do I see?—or is it merely fancy?

Methinks yon rising ghost stares full in view,

Points to its wounds and cries aloud――Revenge――

My B4v 16

My country groans—and can ye hear her sighs,

And hear them tamely—Oh! my heart ’twill
burst.

Junius

Her sighs?—and hear them tamely? never-
never――

Who knows the secrets of my soul,

Knows ’tis on fire, and bursting for revenge.

What tho’ I totter with a weight of years,

And palsied age relaxes every nerve,

Yet such foul deeds have rouz’d the genial current

That long had lag’d――this life by nature’s laws,

Like an old garment must have soon been dropp’d:

And never could I had I liv’d to ages

Have dy’d so well as now—to die at ease

And drop into the grave, unheard, unknown

This is but a common fate――

He, who bleeds in freedom’s cause, expires illustrious.

He falls, but catches immortality.

While greatful millions croud around,

And with a generous tear bedew his urn.

Exeunt.

Scene IIIIV.

In a large Hall.
Enter Brutus and a croud of Citizens.
With servants bearing the dead bodies.

Brutus

Here lay them down, and bare their bleeding
bosoms,

That I may feel their wounds, and weep upon them.

These would gape wide, and speak expressive
language,

They speak your state, the sport of every ruffian,

Who plays with death and thirsts for freemen’s blood.

For you they fell,—but hark! They cry Revenge.

Citizens.

Revenge――

Brutus

True ’tis a mournful sight—to see a brother

Fall by a brothers hand—the desart savage,

Who C1r 17

Who kills his foe and feasts upon his flesh,

Yet spares his kindred—the forest monster,

Who stains the passage to his den with blood,

Abhors such deeds—but shocking as they are,

They teach a powerful lesson

This soon may be your fate, the furious solider

Breaths nought but death――

Brutus

These twinkling stars that glimmer in
their orbs

And seem to weep—these pale and ghastly forms—

This scene of woe, and death’s incumbent shade,

All join to rouze us—these embers here conceal’d

If set on fire, would burst into a flame,

And burn up the globe—take hence these bodies,

And decently entomb them――

Croud round their bier, and weep upon their graves.

Exeunt. With the bodies attended with a long train of
mourners, The bells tolling.
Enter Brutus

Brutus

Oh! what a scene of woe! you oft, my
friends,

have found me pleading in the cause of freedom,

And warding off the blows intended for her.

I’m strugling now with a superior stream,

It baffles every effort――But the conflicts glorious

Should we succeed an happy tide of comfort,

Flows on the soul—new scenes of joy await us,

And gild the ev’ning of our days.

But if we chance to fall, we fall for virtue.

The cause disarms the tyrant of his sting

And wards off his shafts—while our memories

For ages live and blossom round the tomb,

Such thoughts as these now buoy up my spirits,

And brighten all the gloom;—what tho’ misfortunes

And scenes of blood and carnage croud upon me;

E’re long my soul shall leave

These dismal tracks of misery, and go

Where tides of joy in happier currents flow.

C Where C1v 18

Where the proud wretch that laugh’d at every tie,

And from the breast of virtue forc’d a sigh;

No more invades—but endless pleasures roll,

And one eternal sun shine chears the soul.

Exeunt.

End of the second Act.

Act III. Scene I

A spacious Hall. Enter Junius, Brutus, Cassius,Citizens,&c.

Junius

It’s time, high time to check the rage of slaughter

And let out actions show that we are freemen.

Brutus

Welcome thrice happy day! for so I call
thee,

Tho’ scenes of woe attend us――

I feel a ray of hope that richest gem,

Which glimmers in the darkest night,

And gilds the gloom—that firm determin’d spirit,

Which seems to animate this grand assembly,

The most august that ever set in Servia,

We’ll rescue freedom—yes, thy wounds my country

Shall soon be clos’d, and from the precious gore,

Which stains thy streets shall spring a glorious harvest

Now is the crisis; if we lose this moment,

All’s gone for ever――Catch the happy period,

And boldly hurl oppress from her basis.

Cassius

And can you want for motives to perswade
us?

Go to yon tomb and ask the weeping marble,

The fate of those, who sleep within it’sits bosom.

They fell in cries (and listen to the tale)

Unhappy victims to inhuman ruffians;

Who wish to drink this countries richest blood,

And crush expiring freedom—Tell me ye patriots

Will C2r 19

Will you submit to fall without a struggle?

The very worm you tread on shews resentment.

Brutus

’Tis true there’s mighty danger—

But shall that thought, that mean ungenerous
thought

Damp in the least our ardor!

We ne’er can be seduc’d by gaudy charms of riches

Pleasure’s fantastick ray――

Leave this for weaker minds—We scorn them all.

Rather let Servia tumble from her basis.

And in one general ruin cover all,

Than see her citizens oppress’d with chains

And sweetly slumb’ring in the gilded fetters.

The man who boasts his freedom,

Feels solid joy—tho’ poor and low his state,

He looks with pity on the honor’d slave,

Cassius

These are sentiments, Which make us
men.

Has life so many charms,

That it can sweeten every hour of bondage?

Look to the Turk, and relish if you can,

A life in chains—he sighs, but sighs unpitied.

Groans are so frequent, that they pass unnotic’d,

And no one counts the steps of misery.

Enter a Ghost with naked breasts exposing his wounds.
Cassius proceeds,

Oh! Heaven! see yonder ghastly
form,

It comes to push us on, and cries again Revenge.

Points to its wounds, and beckons us away.

And shall we faulter?

ghost sinks.

Brutus

There glow’d the flame of heroes.

If thus resolv’d, some to Rapatio speed;

Tell him we are determin’d—fix’d as fate—

The soldier stay no longer—if deni’d—

A scene of woe shall quickly open.

Yon sun shall set in blood—the weeping moon,

Shrink in her orb—we’ll dare, what men can dare;

And with our daggers force a way to freedom.

A number are sent to Rapatio’s with an account of
this resolution.
Scene C2v 20

Scene II.

The great Hall.
Enter Rapatio and Senators.

Rapatio

Well, friends, you hear the issue of their councils.

The soldier goes, or else they swear to bathe

These streets in blood—ask my resolution.

Say, shall the soldier go?

1st. Senator

The people’s fury’s rais’d: they scorn
to triffle longer.

’Tis not the efforts of expiring faction—

The weak attempts of a distracted party.

But men, who act on principles of honor,

Now grasp the sword, and glorious in the struggle.

Will force their way to freedom――

Rapatio

True, but remember――

These troops;—no power of mine

Can contract—I’m but a servant――

2d. Senator

But stop, Rapatio, stop.

’Tis the cause of freedom they defend:—

Thy very life’s connected with the issue.

They will not suffer unreveng’d:

You too may fall――

Go mark the gloom that broods on every feature.

Where mournful echo heaves along the wall,

And strikes with all the elegance of woe.

No headstrong opposition actuates.

They cooly weigh, and cautiously determine;

Speak what they feel, and what they feel they act.

Rapatio

Well, I’ll see Bagshot, as he advises

So will I act――

Exit

3d. Senator

Unhappy state of mind!

What tho’ ten thousand pleasures beam around
him,

The gilded couch—the airy post of honor.

No balm of peace, can mitigate his pain.

The ghost of freedom haunts his midnight hours.

This is thy state, O guilt—to stop, is ruin—

To follow on is death—give me but virtue,

That C3r 21

That sun-shine of the soul—enough—I’m happy.

Scene changes to a private apartment— Enter Rapatio and Bagshot.

Rapatio

The cause is lost! the Patriot’s up in arms,

Pant for revenge—the soldier must retire—

Say, Bagshot. Can you stand the gathering storm?

Bagshot

’Tis an hard case indeed—what can I do?

A soldier’s honor should remain unsullied.

True to his post, should laugh at every danger,

Enjoy his fate, and smile amid the storm.

But when ten thousand furies burst upon me,

Despise my utmost force, and breathe defiance—

Honor says, stand—but prudence says, retire.

Rapatio

But, Bagshot! how this scoundrell mob
will triumph.

Rather rouse up some noble purpose in you;

Burn down their airy towers, and let the flames

Light thee to conquest.

Bagshot

These are charming words.

Close in his cell, the calm philosopher

Enjoys the storm, grasps at the palm of glory,

And fights the distant battles of the world.

It will not, cannot do—if they’re determin’d

We yield to conquering fate, and curse our fortunefortune.

Rapatio

Bagshot farewell—I’ll to the hall,

Exeunt.

Scene III.

The upper Hall.
Enter Rapatio and Senators.

Rapatio

Since you advis’d to this, call in the patriots—

Enter Patriots――

It grieves my soul, to hear the groans of freedom;

And I’m resolv’d, whatever it may cost me

To heal these wounds and save my bleeding country,

I’ve C3v 22

I’ve struggled hard to get the cause remov’d.

The soldier goes—and ’tis my fervent prayer――

Each other wrong may find a quick remove,

And prince and peasant may join in mutual love.

Exeunt. Scene changes to the Senate House.
Enter Brutus.

Brutus

Patriots all hail! the happy hour approaches,

When vanquish’d freedom rears again her head.

And sweetly smiles. Our constant, manly conduct

Has won the day—the sullen foe retires――

He is interrupted with an universal houtshout

Oh! What a burst of joy was that—there broke

The warm effusion of an heart that feels

In virtue’s cause. Gods! what a throb of pleasure!

To look around this vast, this crouded hall

And hail them freemen—what tho’ some have bled,

Unhappy victims—what tho’ I have wept,

And struggled hard to rescue thee, my country,

This glorious harvest richly compensates

The dangers past—nature looks gay around me,

And all creation seems to join my joy.

With transport now I take my little offspring,

And hug them to my bosom, while they catch

The throbs I feel, and prattle out their joys.

Now I can toil for them contented—freeze

In winter’s cold, and burn in summer’s heat,

And sing my cares away, while what I earn,

I’ll call my own, and leave it their’s for ever.

And hence, ye patriots learn an useful lesson――

He who in virtue’s cause remain unmov’d

And nobly struggles for his country’s good:

Shall more than conquer—better days shall beam,

And happier prospects croud again the scene――

Exeunt
Scene C4r 23

Scene IV.

Enter Rapatio, Limpet, Meagre, and P――p.

Rapatio

What say my friends? shall patriots, grov’ling
patriots,

Thus thwart our schemes? push back the plan of action!

And make it thus recoil? mistaken wretches!

Unthinking fools! they work their own destruction.

Let them amuse themselves with thoughts of freedom,

And bask amid the sunshine of an hour;—

They hover o’er the secret precipice—

The leap is death. Come, cunning be my guide,

Beleagu’d with hell—Come all those hateful passions,

That rouse the mind to action.

Meagre

Bravely spoke!

And here’s a soul, like thine, that never linger’d,

When prompted by revenge—If thirst of power;

A spirit haughty, sour, implacable,

That bears a deadly enmity to freedom,

But mean and base; who never had a notion

Of generous and manly; who would stab,

Stab in the dark, but what he’d get revenge;

If such a soul is suitable to thy purpose,

’Tis here.

Rapatio

I thank thee—thy fraternal love

I always knew, twin brother in affection.

Bagshot complains his numbers are but few:

We must have more: and here the field’s extensive.

But then their dev’lish coolness comes athwart us,

To represent them factious and rebellious;

Mov’d on by malice to attack the soldier—

There lies the doubt—the simple bare assertion

Would sway but weak.

Limput

If this is all you want—

If breaking thro’ the sanction of an oath,

And trampling on the highest obligations

Would back this good design—here’s one will do it.

In C4v 24

In youth when all my soul was full of virtue,

And growing age had not matur’d my practice,

I felt a pang and shudder’d at a crime.

But thoughts like these have long since slept; old
habits

Have sear’d my conscience—Vice is now familiar—

Prescribe whatever form you chuse—I sign it—

Rapatio

’Tis well—then swear—that in our general
meeting,

This was declar’d, that long before that night,

In which we snuff’d the blood of innocence,

The factious citizens, urg’d on by hell,

Had leagu’d together, to attack the soldier;

Trample on laws; murder the friends of power

And bury all things in one common ruin.

All this you call the majesty of heaven

To witness to as truth――

Limput

I do, and swear.

Rapatio

There’s one thing more and then my
mind’s at rest.

Those noble men who fought for government

Are now confin’d, and soon must have a trial.

Let’s all unite and use our utmost efforts

To get them off. There’s worthy Hazlerod

Who hears with too much joy the groans of freedom,

To see her executioner’s expire.

On you my dear P――p much depends.

P――p

And is Rapatio grown distrustful of
me?

Of me, who long had sacrific’d my honor,

To be a tool?—who’ve cring’d and bow’d and fawn’d

To get a place?—Fear not I e’er should prove

An alien here—Go wash the æthiop white

The bid my soul grow fond and pleas’d with virtue.

Rapatio

Then I’m secure—Know patriots this
and tremble.

Grief shall again its wonted seat resume,

And piles of mangled corpses croud the tomb.

Thro’ all the wanton streets of pow’r I’ll rove,

And soar exulting like the bird of Jove,

On lofty pinions put a sovereign sway,

And glow illustrious in the blaze of day.

Exeunt.

End of Third Act.

D1r 25

Act IV. Scene I.

Enter Rapatio and Gripeall.

Rapatio

Hail, halcyon days! when every flying moment,

Affords new scenes of joy; what tho’ the soldier

True to my purpose hurls promiscuous slaughter;

He lives and triumphs while the scales of justice,

Thus by my tools are held. The day is ours.

Such acts my Hazlerod, demand promotion――

And thou shall have it—Yes, the time approaches,

The happy period dawns, when thou shall swell

The chair of state, and roll in wish’d for honors—

Thus while each post is garnish’d with my creatures,

I’ll show my pow’r, and trample on my country.

Gripeall

’Twas nobly spoke—there breath’d the
soul of sar.

Nor will I pause—my faithful myrmidons

Wait thy command and hang upon thy will.

I’ll use the little pow’r that’s lodg’d within me.

I’ll cramp their trade ’till pale ey’d poverty

Haunts all their streets, and frowns destruction on
them.

While many a poor man leaning on his staff,

Beholds a numerous, famish’d offspring round him.

Who weep for bread. God’s how his bosom heaves!

Ghastly he rolls an aching eye upon them,

Then blasts my name, and with a groan expires.

Rapatio

What throbs of joy—Nero, I tow’r above
thee.

Exeunt.

Scene II.

Rapatio’s House.

Rapatio,

solus

OFortunate!――

Could I have tho’t my stars would be so kind

As thus to bring my deep laid schemes to bear.

Tho’ from my youth ambition’s path I trod,

D Suck’d D1v 26

Suck’d the contagion from my mother’s breast;

The early taint has rankled in my veins;

Dispotic rule my first, my sov’reign wish.

Yet to succeed, beyond my sanguine hope,

To quench the generous flame, the ardent love

Of liberty in Servia’s free born sons,

Destroy their boasted rights, and mark them slaves.

To ride triumphant o’er my native land,

And revel on its spoils—But hark!—it groans!

The heaving struggles of expiring freedom!—

Her dying pangs—and I the guilty cause:—

I shudder at the thought—why this confusion?

The phantom conscience, whom I’ve bid adieu—

Can she return?—O let me, let me fly!

I dare not meet my naked heart alone.

I’ll hast for comfort to the busy scenes,

Where fawning courtiers, creatures of my own,

With adulating tongue, midst gaping crouds,

Shall strive to paint me fair—the day is lucky—

The divan meets and Hazlerod presides.

’Tis true in rhetoric he don’t excell

Demosthenes or Cicero of old:

But what of that, his gratitude to me,

Will animate each period of applause.

I from a fribbling, superficial dabler,

A vain pretender to each learned science,

A poet, preacher, conjurer and quack――

Rear’d the obsequious trifler to my purpose,

Rob’d him in scarlet, dignifi’d the man:

An hecatomb of incense is my due.

How grateful to my ear, these flatt’ring strains!

His fulsome requiem’s sooth my soul to peace.

Who else wou’d place in such a sacred seat,

Credulity inwove with the extremes,

Of servile, weak, implacable and pround.

But see he comes—see that important phiz,

A speech prepar’d, but what I must correct,

If interlarded with profuse encomiums.—

To hold me up the paragon of virtue—

But it may pass— of modern composition,

That’s the test――

Enter D2r 27 Enter Hazlerod

――Welcome, my dear Hazlerod.――――

My friend, my brother, or still dearer name,

Thou firm abettor of my grand design!

Thou now canst cover what the world call crimes.

We’ll then securely crush the scoundrell mob,

And Claudia like, the citizens ride o’er,

And execute what Nero durst not do—

Hazlerod going hastily off, Rapatio stops him.

I’ll call my myrmidons, they shall attend,

Swell the parade with all the venal herd.

Gripeall, that minion of oppressive power,

With simple Dupe, the ready tool of state;

And vituous Limput perjur’d only once,

Then indispensible to serve a cause

Which truth would ruin; doubtless they’ll be there.

Exeunt.

Scene III.

Opens with a procession of coaches, chariots, &c. Changes to
the Chamber, where the Divan is opened with a speech by
Hazlerod, highly pleasing to the creatures of arbitrary
power, and equally disgusting to every man of virtue.
Enter Hazlerod.

Hazlerod,――[Speaker label not present in original source]

Rapatio— hail! ’tis by thy fauslt’ring hand,

This happy day beholds me rob’d in honor.

Pow’r! ’tis a charm that gods can only know:

These, while they view this little globe of earth,

And trace the various movements of mankind,

With pleasure mark that soul, that dares aspire,

To catch this heavenly flame and coppy from them.

And sure Rapatio, if mortality

Could ever boast an elevated genius,

That scorns the dust, and tow’rs above the stars;

A soul that only grasps at high atchievements,

And drinks intoxicating draughts of power,

The claim is thine—while simple yet they station,

True greatness peer’d, and promis’d future glory—

Yea while an infant, hanging at the breast,

With D2v 28

With life, you largely suck’d the lust of power.

In youth, in age, invariably the same.

Thy easy flow of passion, happy talent!

Which work’d on unsuspecting minds so strangly,

Pus’d on the plan, and pav’d the road to honor.

With this in view, you’d imitate devotion,

Which like a mantle, cover’d great designs,

With virtue glow, and set among her sons:

While these with transport listned to the tale,

Gaz’d as they heard, and wonder’d how they lov’d.

To catch this prize, in what have you not toil’d.

When nature slept, thy busy mind awoke,

And por’d on future scenes, and plan’d thy fate.

Then, when the ties of virtue and thy country,

Unhappy check’d thy lust of pow’r— like Caesar,

You nobly scorn’d them all, and on the ruins,

Of bleeding freedom, founded by all thy greatness

And what a rich, a glorious compensation

For dangers past— gilded all o’er with pensions,

Here like a mighty deity you sit,

Enthron’d in state, nor envy Jove his thunder.

While aw’d by thee, the distant nations gaze

And thousands yield their tribute of amaze.

Meanwhile at humble distance I pursue,

And grow illustrious as I copy you.

Then when I’ve trampl’d on my country’s fate,

And no one lives my actions to relate,

With my own ashes light the funeral fire,

Die as I liv’d, and in a flash expire.

Exeunt.

End of the fourth Act.

Act V. Scene I.

Enter Brutus

Brutus

O my poor country!――

I’ve wak’d and wept, and would have fought
for thee,

And empted every vein, when threatn’d ruin.

Lowr’d D3r 29

Lowr’d o’er thy head; but now too late. I fear

The manacles prepar’d by Brundo’s hand,

Cruel Rapatio, with more fatal art,

Had fix’d, has rivetted beyond redress—

My indignation’s rouz’d, my soul disdains,

Nor will I longer stay where poisonous breath,

Of Sycophants applause, pollutes the air.

The shameless tyrant snuffs the base perfume;

With unrelenting heart and brazen front

He rears his guilty head amidst the fear

Of Servia’s virtuous sons, whose latest breath

Shall execrate a wretch, who dare enslave,

A generous, free and independent people.

――If, ye pow’rs divine,

Ye mark the movements of this nether world,

And bring them to account—crush, crush these
vipers,

Who singl’d out by a community,

To guard their rights—shall for a grasp of oar,

Or paltry office sell them to the foe.

Exit.

Scene II.

A Prison.

E――r,

solus.

It’s done; not all their boasted pow’r can save me:

Not Hazlerod himself with all his art,

Who long had buoy’d up my sinking spirits,

Can soothe the sullen passions of my soul,

Or pour one ray of comfort on my mind.

Condemn’d!—to die! perdition seize them all.

Where are now all the gilded airy prospects

That swam before me—Honors, places, pensions—

’Tis all a cheat, a damn’d a cruel cheat.

The wretch that feasts himself on promises,

Pursues a phantom, and but grasps at air;

Th’ illusive vapour leads him to a bog

Then leaves him to his fate—cursed enticers!

Ye who seduc’d my soul to laugh at virtue,

To give up all my right to future bliss,

And bid me dare to stamp the die for ever:

Ye who encourag’d me with hopes of pardon,

To D3v 30

To glut your vengeance, for the cause was yours,

On the weeping innocence; to act a deed,

Which sportive fame shall blow about the world.

Where are ye now?――

Enter Hazlerod

Hazlerod

What lost to grief!—dejected! can it be!

Can the poor verdict of some half form’d peasants,

Unmeaning dull machines, thus damp your courage

Rouse up my friend, for friend I still will call thee:

By every tie that links the humane mind,

That surest sympathy which cement souls,

Which like two rivers mingle mutal streams,

And roll together—thou art and shalt be mine.

Know then we all have met and all determin’d

To aid the cause in hand—decrepid Meagre

In whom a passion of revenge is virtue;

And he, the life of all:—whose simple breath

Sways every action, cautious Latat

Whose soul ne’er knew one generous sentiment,

Which gives a sanction to humanity.

Steady and vigilant, in one sole plan,

To crush the friends of freedom, extirpate

The dear remains of virtue, and like Nero,

At one dread blow to massacre his millions.

Steady to this one plan, tho’ dreary spectres

Scare all his soul and haunt his midnight slumber.

Yes, we will still protect thee.—’Tis impossible

A cause so much at heart, shou’d droop and languish,

And we not lend an aid—when S――r bled,

We snuff’d the rich perfume, the groans of youth.

Gods! they were musick in our ears—you therefore

Shall one day leave this dismal tenement,

Again with pleasing scenes of blood and carnage,

To glut our vengeance—yes—by heaven we swear,

You shall be free whatever pangs it cost us.

We’ll laugh at all the howls of patriotism.

Should virtue check, should conscience whisper terror,

And lash our troubled minds, we’ll brave it all.—

Exeunt.
Scene D4r 31

Scene III.

Enter Brutus, and Marcus a young Patriot.

Brutus

It must be so—our fates are too unkind.

Who would have thought, beneath an air of virtue,

Solemn grimace, and proffer of fair deeds,

Should lurk such boaseness—To see the Patriot,

Reeking in gore, excites the keenest transport,

Oh! my poor country! when I see thee wounded,

Bleeding to death—it pains me to the soul

Long have I wept in secret—nay, could weep

’Till tears were chang’d to blood—When will it be,

When high-soul’d honor beats within our bosoms,

And calls to action—when thy sons like heroes,

Shall dare assert thy rights, and with their swords,

Like men, like freemen, force a way to conquest

Or on thy ruins gloriously expire.――

Marcus

Oh! Brutus, you excite a generous transport.

In such a cause, pleas’d could I bare my bosom,

And pour my choicest blood—yes, I have seen,

Tho’ young I’ve seen, such crimes by ermind wretches,

And would have shock’d a century, one thing I wonder,

That deed so foul should find such warm abettors.

Brutus

You little know the world—there greater
vices,

Lead to preferment, the man of honest mind,

Whose generous soul disdains a grov’ling action.

And grasps alone at virtue—sinks neglected:

Yes, my young friend, would you be great and
powerful

Loaded with wealth and honor, be a rascall,

Stoop low and cringe—stick not at oaths, nor let

Thy shrinking soul, start at the thought of murder,

Then to Rapatio go, and Hazlerod,

And all the band shall give a hearty welcome.

Marcus

Oh no! I scorn it—better live a poor man,

And die so too—while virtue and my conscience,

Speak peace within!—better, tho’ hate and malice,

May shoot their shafts against me—better thus

To make my Exit, while the soul with comfort

Reviews the past and smiles upon the future.

Brutus D4v 32

Brutus

Yes, Marcus, poverty must be thy fate,

If thou’rt thy country’s friend—Think upon it

When I’m gone, as soon perhaps I may be

Remember it—those men whose crimes now shock,

May close their measures—Yes, the wish’d for period

May soon arrive, when murderers, blood and carnage,

Shall crimson all these streets; when this poor country

Shall loose her richest blood; forbid it heaven!

And may these monsters find their glories fade,

Crush’d in the ruins they themselves had made.

While thou my country, shall again revive,

Shake off misfortune, and thro’ ages live.

See thro’ the waste a ray of virtue gleame,

Dispell the shades and brighten all the scene.

Wak’d into life, the blooming forest glows.

And all the desart blossoms as the rose.

From distant lands see virtuous millions fly

To happier climates, and a milder sky.

While on the mind successive pleasures pour,

’Till time expires, and ages are no more.

Exeunt omnes.

Finis.