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faintly estimated; yet even a modern fancy must be torpid, that, in reading Eschylus, is not electrified by the ghost of Clytemnestra rushing in to awaken the Eumenides; and the grandeur of terror in spectral agency was certainly never made more perfect, than where that poet invokes "the slumbering Furies, and the sleepless dead."

The audience themselves must have formed no unimposing appearance. Of the places for myriads, the foremost belonged to the archons, the senate, the generals, and the high-priesthood of the state. Strangers were admitted during one of the festivals, and had their allotted seats. The knights had their station apart; and all the free citizens arranged themselves according to their tribes. The place for the youth was called the Ephobikon; and the women had distinct seats, though opinion, more than law, seems to have kept the more respectable class of them from the theatre.

I shall proceed in a subsequent number, to the consideration of the Greek plays themselves. For the dryness of the above details I have no apology to make, but their important connexion with the more animating subject that is to come.


SCENE. The upper part of a meadow, near Florence. It runs sloping down to a river, and is sheltered at the top by a small wood of olives and chesnut-trees, and ornamented in various ways. Fiesole is in the distance.



COME on, come on!-A little further on,

And we shall reach a place where we may pause.
It is a meadow full of the early spring:

Tall grass is there which dallies with the wind,
And never-ending odorous lemon-trees;

Wild flowers in blossom, and sweet citron buds,
And princely cedars; and the linden boughs
Make arched walks for love to whisper in.
If you be tired, lie down, and you shall hear
A river, which doth kiss irregular banks,
Enchant your senses with a sleepy tune.
If not, and merry blood doth stir your veins,
The place hath still a fair and pleasant aspect :
For in the 'midst of this green meadow springs
A fountain of white marble, o'er whose sides
Run stories, graven by some cunning hand,
Of pastoral life, and tipsy revelry.

There will we, 'midst delicious cates, and wines
Sparkling and amorous, and sweet instruments,
Sing gentle mischief as the sun goes down.→→
Quick! but a few steps more-'round by this copse
Of olives and young chesnuts (to whose arms
The vines seem clinging like so many brides)

And you will reach't-Ha!-Stay!-Look! here it is.
Philost. (rushing forward) Ha, ha!


Ha, ha!

Fiamet. Ha, ha! Ha, ha!-Look! how Philostratus
Buries his forehead in the fresh green grass.
Pamphilus. Hail, vernal spot!-We bear to thy embrace
Pleasures that ask for calm: Love; and Delight;
Harmonious pulses where no evil dwells;

Smiles without treach'ry; words all soft and true;

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Neiph. Philost.

So, that is well. Now, where is Tindaro?
Ho, Tindaro, our servant!

Here, fellow Tindaro!
Tindaro. (entering) Call?' marry!

Laggard knave!

The queen doth call thee.
Had she borne-

Dost dare affirm she cannot bear?

How? How, bold knave?

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Not I.
Not I, by 'r lady! She can bear, no doubt ;-
Is fruitful as a vineyard; that's past doubt.
But, signor, I have borne on these poor shoulders,

Two trunks-look! look!—cramm'd full of wines and dainties—
Two lutes; a viol; besides some ten-

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Tush! Tush!

On Corvino's back;





And Stephano doth bear the boards for chess;
And Grasso hath the music.

(Servants enter, laden.)

Place all here.
Thus, in a circle. Now, awake the wines!
And spread these cloths upon the level ground.
Ho! there-take heed! thou wilt unstring my lute.
Now, where's the viol di gamba? Place it here.
So, get ye gone unto yon chesnut-tree,

And share your wine in honesty. Away! (Servants exeunt.)
-Here will we rest, with all our court about us.
Lauretta and Elissa, come this way.

Stay, Fiametta.

With Pampinea ?—Well. Pamphilus. Here let us rest, tender Emilia,





And on this grassy hillock crown'd with flowers,
Place thy white arm. Now let the violets gaze
Their fill and drink the blue light from thine eyes!
Now let the thievish winds their sweet wealth steal
From the dark riches of thy hair. Look up!
Fair Fiametta, dost thou hear him talk?
He sings, methinks. Or, is 't his voice is sweet?
'Tis sugar'd o'er, with flattery.-Now, for me—
The nightingales which haunt about these woods
Grow hoarse, methinks.

How so?


They lose their music

(Else say their skill) before your honied words.
Hush! what's a rose? I'll crush these gaudy leaves.
How coarse their crimson is beside thine own!
Had I but lilies, I would burn them straight,

As a white peace-offering to thee.-Come! wilt love me?

Pampinea. He is a mockbird, and but imitates
The poetry he hears in falser prose.
Turn him to me, and leave him.

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I will medicine 't;-
Not as men steal the poisonous juice from serpents.
'll let him talk, till his last drop of danger
Be spent, and he is harmless. Look upon
What! wilt thou love me?



Ay; by foaming Venus!
By all these clinging, creeping, curling vines!
By Love!-I swear it. As the bee doth gather
Wealth from the rose's lip, I'll steal from thine.
You sing too much in pairs. Break up! break up!
And in the place of tender falsehoods tell us-

Laur. Elissa. Ha, ha! Ha, ha!













What's that which moves your mirth?
Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha! 'Tis an amorous story
Philostratus has read us out of book.
We live all here in honest fellowship.
He who is worth a jest or owns a song
Holds it in trust for this community.
Ay, no close purses, sir; no hoards of words;
No merry tales; no serious; no dull songs,
Learn'd of the cuckoo underneath a pine,
And buzz'd in private to a craz❜d guitar.
All is our own. So, speak, Philostratus!
Speak, without more ado.


I never tried to tell a tale till now.

-? By my soul,

I cannot tell it-nay-if you will have

I'll drink

A maudlin story, why prepare your eyes;
We'll have salt tears enow. Once on a time-
Out on thee. That's the schoolboy's stale beginning.
I've heard it fifteen hundred times and more.
Beggars unfold such 'neath our valets' windows
At a penny apiece, and they account it dear.
I knew how it would be. So, come!
A bumper of Greek wine and hold my peace.
What! vanquish'd by a man that wears slash'd satin?
Tush! thou a soldier!-Talk no more of love.
I'll tell it, by these teeth!-Once on a time-
(Oh! you are still now)-Well-Once on a time,
There lived a king--


An old man,
Who wedded (somewhat rashly) a young wife.
I cannot hold my wonder.

Peace, you parrot!
Well, sirs; this wife being young, as I have said,
Loved one was young,-a black-hair'd curly man,
Almost a Moor: Your women love such men.
His name?—I see 't. He squinted somewhat-thus-
A pleasant cast-Go on, and damn thyself!
She loved this curly fellow he liked her:

The end was that they met. Each night tall Tormes
Stole to her chamber, when King Philip slept,
And lay upon his pillow. For some time Love
Hoodwink'd our ancient king; but he, being prone
Unto suspicion, as most monarchs are,

Soon read in Helen's looks and Tormes' smile
That he was cuckold.

'Tis a filthy name.
Pamphilus. 'Tis so: but we must fix on bad and good






Names fit for each: we wreak our scorn, methinks,
Too much on titles, and pass by the deed.
Well, sirs: Our king, being bred to tricks of state,
And burying anger in a sure revenge,

Watch'd waited-and surprised the twain asleep.
Yet, being in darkness (lest his lamp might scare
That guilty pair away), he could but know
Two sleepers lay there: whether girl or man
Was but a guess. On this-to mark the one

Whose hair was coarser than the queen's, he knew-
What does he, sirs, but clips-look!-shears the locks
(Then worn in clusters) close unto the crown.
This done, goes back and sleeps.

An easy fellow!
Well,-Tormes 'wakes and with a yawn-just thus-
Rubs his broad palm athwart his neck. Behold!

He starts-the curls are gone! The queen weeps showers.
Yet suddenly reviving (while her dull swain

Puzzleth in vain, o'er this-then that device)
Bids him haste back, and whispers in his ear.

He laughs-shouts-dons his clothes-and to the room
Where all his mates (the equerries) lie in dreams
Hurries, and closely clips each sleeping crown
Bare as his own-Ha, ha!—the morning comes,
And our great monarch hath a crop-ear'd levee !
He looks-one-two-three-all are shorn alike.
Scarce can he hold his wonder: Yet, (being wise,
And wishing not to spread his own disgrace)
Quoth he- Let him who did this act be dumb,
And do't no more!"-which said, all go their way.
Then, as the story ends, by slow degrees

The king forgave his queen: This touch'd her heart;
And she requited him, at last, with love.

I do not like your story.

'Tis not mine;

But an old record of a woman's wit.

The moral

We'll forgive't. Some other time—
A twelvemonth hence-when we have had our suppers;
We'll sleep upon 't while thou unravell'st it.
Now, who drinks Aleatico?

Pamph. Dion. & Philos.



Here, ladies-here are grapes-(spread out your laps !)
Purple as evening-figs-and cakes, whose tops

Make dull the whiteness of our frosted Alps.

[Here they feast.]


Bring here the foreign wines!

(To the servants.)


Will none enrich




Our banquet with a song? O shame upon ye!

More wine! Bring foreign wines! Now, which shall❜t be?

(sings) Shall 't be Port that flushes

Dark as rubies red?

Or Burgundy which blushes

Like a bride in bed?

Let 't be full, and rich, and bright,

Dazzling our eyes with liquid light.
Then't shall be wild champagne,
Which flies and falls again,
Drowning the drinker's brain
In dreams all night.


Dion. Phil.






Dion. Philost.









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And so is Sack, whose kiss doth flavour
Of the wit that's past and told.
Let 't be full, and rich, and bright,
Like a gem that mocks the sight.
Let it be,-if like a stone,

Like the diamond alone,
Dazzling the night!-

[During this song the tables are removed.]
-And now, sweet sister, where is thy sad story?
For sad it must be, if thy mind doth speak
Its natural music, and no erring star

Bewitch thee to unhealthy merriment.
I do not think with you: a merry story,
Methinks, is harmless as a tale that's sad.
Yet-speak, Emilia!

Once-in Florence, here-
In that part which looks toward the hills Pistoian,
There dwelt a lady. She was very fair,

Young, rich, a maiden, noble, tender, free.
O Jupiter!

O Vulcan, hammer me i'the head!

I'm budding.

What! i'the head?-he must have horns. Is he a goat?- -or

Peace! my love's a budding,

Broad, red, all blushes, like a three days' bride.
Silence in court! Say on, Emilia.

Was she loved,-this lady?

By two noble youths:
Guidotto one, a high-born Cremonese,
And one a Pavian, Mutio Imola.

Both dwelt in Florence, where this lady came
With old Certaldo, when those tedious wars
Which vexed the city slept, and men were free
To come from exile to their natural homes.
Call me her name! My head could never bear
These vague surmisings. Lady'—was she tall?
Meek? fair?-Give me her name, and strait I see her :
Else is she but a sound.

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And very fair she was, and very meek,
Tall too, and bent her as yon poplar bows
To the sweet music of the river airs;
And so it was she whisper'd.

What, in music?
Ay, Sir: for what is music, if sweet words
Rising from tender fancies be not so?

Methinks there is no sound so gentle-none

Not even the South-wind young, when first he comes
Wooing the lemon flowers, for whom he leaves

The coasts of Baiæ-not melodious springs,

Though heard i' the stillness of their native hills

Not the rich viol, trump, cymbal, nor horn,
Guitar nor cittern, nor the pining flute,

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