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age,

And the whom mighty kingdoms curtsy to,
Like a forlorn and desperate cast-away,
Do shameful execution on herself.

Mar. But if my frosty signs and chaps of
Grave witnesses of true experience,
Cannot induce you to attend my words,
Speak, Rome's dear friend, as erst our ancestor,

[TO Lucius.
When with his folemn tongue he did discourse
To love-lick Dido's sad attending ear,
The story of that baleful burning night,
When subtile Geeeks surpriz’d king Priam's Troy :
Tell us, what Sinon hath bewitch'd our ears,
Or who hath brought the fatal engine in,
That gives our Troy, our Rome, the civil wound.
My heart is not compact of Aint nor steel;
Nor can I utter all our bitter grief,
But foods of tears will drown my oratory,
And break my very utterance ; even in the time
When it should move you to attend me most,
Lending your kind commiseration.
Here is a captain, let him tell the tale,
Your hearts will throb and weep to hear him speak.

Luc. Then, noble auditory, be it known to you, That cursed Chiron and Demetrius Were they that murdered our emperor's brother, And they it were that ravished our sister ; For their fell faults our brothers were beheaded, Our father's tears despis'd, and basely cozen'd Of that true hand, that fought Rome's quarrel out, And sent her enemies into the grave. Lastly myself unkindly banished, The gates shut on me, and turn'd weeping out, To beg relief among Rome's enemies; Who drown'd their enmity in my true tears, And op'd their arms to embrace me as a friend; And I am turn’d forth, be it known to you,

That

That have preserv'd her welfare in my blood,
And from her bosom took the enemy's point,
Sheaching the steel in my advent'rous body.
Alas !--you know, I am no vaunter, I;
My scars can witness, dumb although they are,
That my report is just, and full of truth.
But, soft, methinks, I do digress too much,
Citing my worthless praise: oh, pardon me,
For when no friends are by, men praise themselves.
Mar. Now is my tongue to speak : behold this

child,
Of this was Tamora delivered,
The issue of an irreligious Moor,
Chief architect and plotter of these woes;
The villain is alive in Titus' house,
And as he is, to witness this is true.
Now judge, what cause had Titus to revenge
These wrongs, unspeakable, past patience,
Or more than any living man could bear.
Now you have heard the truth, what say you, Ro..

mans?
Have we done aught amiss ? shew us wherein,
And from the place where you behold us now,
The poor remainder of Andronicus,
We'll hand in hand all headlong cast us down,
And on the ragged stones beat out our brains,
And make a mutual closure of our house.
Speak, Romans, speak; and, if you say, we shall,
Lo, hand in hand, Lucius and I will fall.

Æm. Come, come, thou reverend man of Rome,
And bring our emperor gently in thy hand,
Lucius our emperor, for, well I know,
The common voice do cry, it shall be fo.

Mar. Lucius, all hail, Rome's royai emperor !
Go, go, into old Ticus' sorrowful house,
And hither hale that misbelieving Moor,
To be adjudg'd some direful Naughtering death ;

As

As punishment for his most wicked life,
Lucius, all hail, Rome's gracious governor !

Luc. Thanks, gentle Romans : may I govern fo,
To heal Rone's harm, and drive away her woe!
But, gentle people, give me aim a while,
For nature puts me to a heavy task :
Stand all aloof; but, uncle, draw you near,
To shed obsequious tears upon this trunk;
Oh, take this warın kiss on thy pale cold lips,

[Kisses Titus. These sorrowful drops upon thy blood-stain’d face; The last true duties of thy noble fon.

Mar. Ay, tear for tear, and loving kiss for kiss,
Thy brother Marcus tenders on thy lips ;
O, were the sum of these that I should

pay Countless and infinite, yet would I pay them!

Luc. Come hither, boy; come, come, and learn

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of us

To melt in showers; thy grandfire lov'd thee well ;
Many a time he danc'd thee on his knee,
Sung thee asleep, his loving breast thy pillow;
Many a matter hath he told to thee,
Meet and agreeing with thy infancy;
In that respect then, like a loving child,
Shed yet fome small drops from thy tender spring,
Because kind nature doth require it so;
Friends should associate friends, in grief and woe.
Bid him farewell, commit him to the grave;
Do him that kindness, and take leave of him.

Boy. O grandfire, grandsire! even with all my heart,
'Would I were dead, so you did live again,
O lord, I cannot speak to him for weeping,
My tears will choak me, if I ope my mouth.

Enter Romans with Aaron.
Rom. You sad Andronici, have done with woes :
Give sentence on this execrable wretch.

That

2

will;

That hath been breeder of these dire events.

Luc. Set him breast deep in earth, and familh him, There let him stand and rave and cry for food; If any one relieves or pities him, For the offence he dies. This is our doom. Some stay to see him fastned in the earth.

Aar. O, why should wrath be mute, and fury dumb! I am no baby, I, that with base prayers I should repent the evil I have done : Ten thousand worse than ever yet I did, Would I perform, if I might have my If one good deed in all my life I did, I do repent it from my very soul.

Luc. Some loving friends convey the emperor hence, And give him burial in his father's grave. My father and Lavinia shall forthwith Be closed in our houshold's monument : As for that heinous tygress Tamora, No funeral rites, nor man in mournful weeds, No mournful bell shall ring her burial; But throw her forth to bearts and birds of prey; Her life was beast-like, and devoid of pity ; And, being so, shall have like want of pity. See justice done on Aaron, that damn'd Moor, From whom our heavy haps had their beginning; Then, afterwards, we'll order well the state ; That like events may ne'er it ruinate. [Exeunt omnes.

TITUS ANDRONICUS.] This is one of those plays which I have always thought, with the better judges, ought not to be acknowleged in the liit of Shakespeare's genuine pieces. And, perhaps, I may give a proof to strengthen this opinion, that may put the matter out of question. Ben Jonson, in the introduction to his Bartholomew-Fair, which made its first appearance in the year 1614, couples Jeronymo and Andronicus together in reputation, and speaks of them as plays then of twenty-five or thirty years standing. Confequently An ironicus muft have becn on the ftage before Shakespeare left Warwickshire, to come and reside in London : and I never heard it so much as intimated, that he had

turned

can find.

turned his genius to stage-writing before he affociated with the players, and became one of their body. However, that he afterwards introduced it a-new on the stage, with the addition of his own masterly touches, is incontestible, and thenice, I presume; grew his title to it. The di&tion iu general, where he has not taken the pains to raise it, is even beneath that of the Three Parts of Henry VI. The story we are to suppose merely fi&titious. Ano dronicus is a sus-name of pure Greek derivation. Tamora is neither mentioned by Ammianus Marcellinus, nor any body else that I

Nor had Rome, in the time of her emperors, any wars with the Goths that I know of, not till after the translation of the empire, I mean to Byzantium, and yet the scene of our play is laid at Rome, and Saturninus is elected to the empire at the capitol.

THEOBALD. All the editors and critics agree with Mr. Theobald in suppofing this play spurious. I see no reason for differing from them; for the colour of the file is wholly different from that of the other plays, and there is an attempt at regular versification, and artificial closes, not always inelegant, yet seldom pleasing. The barbarity of the spectacles, and the general massacre, which are here exhi. bited, can scarcely be conceived tolerable to any audience; yet we are told by Jonson, that they were not only borne, but praised. That Shakespeare wrote any part, though sheobald declares it inconteftible, I see no reason for believing.

The testimony produced at the beginning of this play, by which it is ascribed to Shakespeare, is by no means equal to the argument against its authenticity, arising from the total difference of conduct, language, and sentiments, by which it stands apart from all the rest. Meeres had probably no other evidence than that of a title-page, which, though in our time it be sufficient, was then of no great authority ; for all the plays which were rejected by the first collectors of Shakespeare's works, and admitted in later editions, and again rejected by the critical editors, had Shakespeare's name on the title, as we must suppose, by the fraudulence of the printers, who, while there were yet no gazettes, nor advertisements, nor any means of circulating literary intelligence, could usurp at pleasure any celebrated name. Nor had Shakespeare any interest in detecting the imposture, as none of his fame or profit was produced by the press.

The chronology of this play does not prove it not to be Shakespeare's. If it had been written twenty-five years, in 1614, it might have been written when Shakespeare was twentyfive years old. When he left Warwickshire I know not, but ac the age of twenty-five it was rather too late to Ay for deer-stealing.

Ravenscroft, who in the reign of Charles II. revised this play, and restored it to the stage, tells us, in his preface, from a thea. trical tradition, I suppose, which in his time might be of sufficient

authority,

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