Sidebilder
PDF
ePub

“ I dream'd of my lady, I dream'd of her grief,
I dream'd that her lord was a barbarous chief;
On a rock of the ocean fair Ellen did seem:
Glenara! Glenara! now read me my dream!”

In dust low the traitor has knelt on the ground,
And the desert reveal'd where his lady was found;
From a rock of the ocean that beauty is borne;
Now joy to the house of fair Ellen of Lorn!

Campbell

MARCELLUS SPEECH TO THE MOB.

WHEREFORE rejoice that Cæsar comes in triumph ?
What conquest brings he home?
What tributaries follow him to Rome,
To grace in captive bonds his chariot wheels ?
You blocks, you stones, you worse than senseless things!
Oh you hard hearts ! you cruel men of Rome!
Knew you not Pompey? many a time and oft
Have you climb'd up to walls and battlements,
To towers and windows, yea, to chimney-tops,
Your infants in your arms, and there have sat
The live-long day, with patient expectation,
To see great Pompey pass the streets of Rome;
And when you saw his chariot but appear,
Have you not made a universal shout,
That Tiber trembled underneath his banks
To hear the replication of your sounds
Made in his concave shores?
And do you now put on your best attire ?
And do you now cull out a holiday?
And do you now strew flowers in his way
That comes in triumph over Pompey's blood ?
Begone-
Run to your houses, fall upon your knees,
Pray to the gods to intermit the plagues
That needs must light on this ingratitude.

Shakspeare,

MARK ANTONY'S ORATION. FRIENDS, Romans, countrymen !-lend me your ears. I come to bury Cæsar, not to praise him. The evil that men do lives after them; The good is oft interred with their bones : So let it be with Cæsar !-Noble Brutus Hath told you Cæsar was ambitiousIf it was so, it was a grievous fault; And grievously hath Cæsar answer'd it! Here, under leave of Brutus and the rest For Brutus is an honourable man! So are they all! all honourable menCome I to speak in Cæsar's funeral.

He was my friend, faithful and just to me-
But Brutus says he was ambitious-
And Brutus is an honourable man!
He hath brought many captives home to Rome,
Whose ransoms did the general coffers fill :
Did this in Cæsar seem ambitious ?
When that the poor have cried, Cæsar hath wept.
Ambition should be made of sterner stuff!
Yet Brutus says he was ambitious;
And Brutus is an honourable man!
You all did see that, on the Lupercal,
I thrice presented him a kingly crown;
Which he did thrice refuse: was this ambition ?-
Yet Brutus says he was ambitious;
And sure he is an honourable man!
I speak, not to disprove what Brutus spoke;
But here I am to speak what I do know.
You all did love him once; not without cause;
What cause withholds you then to mourn for him :
O judgment! thou hast fled to brutish beasts,
And men have lost their reason!

-Bear with me!
My heart is in the ffin the with Cæsar;
And I must pause till it come back to me!

But yesterday the word of Cæsar might
Have stood against the world now lies he there,
And none so poor as do him reverence !
O masters ! if I were disposed to stir
Your hearts and minds to mutiny and rage,

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

I should do Brutus wrong, and Cassius wrong,
Who, you all know, are honourable men-
I will not do them wrong ; I rather choose
To wrong the dead, to wrong myself and you,
Than I will wrong such honourable men.

But here's a parchment with the seal of Cæsar-
I found it in his closet-'tis his will !
Let but the commons hear his testament-
Which, pardon me, I do not mean to read,
And they will go and kiss dead Cæsar's wounds,
And dip their napkins in his sacred blood;
Yea, beg a hair of him for memory,
And, dying, mention it within their wills,
Bequeathing it as a rich legacy
Unto their issue !-

If you have tears, prepare to shed them now.
You all do know this mantle! I remember
The first time ever Cæsar put it on;
"Twas on a summer's evening, in his tent-
That day he overcame the Nervii !-
Look! in this place ran Cassius' dagger through !-
See what a rent the envious Casca made!-
Through this the well-beloved Brutus stabb’d!
And as he pluck'd his cursed steel away,
Mark how the blood of Cæsar follow'd it !-
As rushing out of doors to be resolved
If Brutus so unkindly knocked or no;
For Brutus, as you know, was Cæsar's angel !
Judge, O ye gods, how dearly Cæsar loved him!
This, was the unkindest cut of all;
For when the noble Cæsar saw him stab!
Ingratitude, more strong than traitor's arms,
Quite vanquish'd him. Then burst his mighty heart;
And, in his mantle, muffling up his face,
Even at the base of Pompey's statue-
Which all the while ran blood-great Cæsar fell!
Oh, what a fall was there, my countrymen!
Then I, and you, and all of us fell down;
Whilst bloody treason flourish'd over us!
Oh, now you weep, and I perceive you feel
The dint of pity : these are gracious drops !
Kind souls! what! weep you when you but behold

Our Cæsar's vesture wounded ?-look you here!
Here is himself-marr'd, as you see, by traitors !

Good friends! sweet friends! let me not stir you up
To such a sudden flood of mutiny!
They that have done this deed are honourable !-
What private griefs they have, alas, I know not,
That made them do it: they are wise and honourable,
And will, no doubt, with reason answer you.
I come not, friends, to steal away your hearts.
I am no orator, as Brutus is;
But, as you know me all, a plain, blunt man,
That loves his friend and that they know full well,
That gave me public leave to speak of him-
For I have neither wit, nor words, nor worth,
Action, nor utterance, nor the power of speech,
To stir men's blood : I only speak right on!
I tell you that which you yourselves do know;
Show you sweet Cæsar's wounds, poor, poor, dumb

mouths !
And bid them speak for me. But, were I Brutus,
And Brutus Antony, there were an Antony
Would ruffle up your spirits, and put a tongue
In every wound of Cæsar, that should move
The stones of Rome to rise and mutiny!

Shakspeare.

THE FIELD OF WATERLOO.

Stop!—for thy tread is on an empire's dust!
An earthquake's spoil is sepulchred below!
Is the spot mark'd with no colossal bust ?
Nor column trophied for triumphal show?
None; but the moral's truth tells simpler so.
As the ground was before, thus let it be.
How that red rain hath made the harvest grow!

And is this all the world has gain'd by thee,
Thou first and last of fields ! king-making victory?

There was a sound of revelry by night,
And Belgium's capital had gather'd then

Her beauty and her chivalry; and bright
The lamps shone o'er fair women and brave men ;
A thousand hearts beat happily; and when
Music arose, with its voluptuous swell,
Soft eyes look'd love to eyes which spake again,

And all went merry as a marriage bell ;-
But hush! hark! a deep sound strikes like a rising

knell. Did ye not hear it?—No ;—'twas but the wind, Or the car rattling o'er the stony street: On with the dance ; let joy be unconfined ; No sleep till morn, when youth and pleasure meet To chase the glowing hours with flying feetBut hark !—that heavy sound breaks in once more, As if the clouds its echo would repeat;

And nearer, clearer, deadlier than before ! Arm! arm! it is!—it is!-the cannon's opening roar.

Within a window'd niche of that high hall
Sate Brunswick's fated chieftain; he did hear
That sound the first amidst the festival,
And caught its tone with death’s prophetic ear;
And when they smiled because he deem'd it near,
His heart more truly knew that peal too well
Which stretch'd his father on a bloody bier,
And roused the vengeance blood alone could quell:
He rush'd into the field ; and, foremost fighting, fell.

Ah! then and there was hurrying too and fro,
And gathering tears, and tremblings of distress,
And cheeks all pale, which but an hour ago
Blush'd at the praise of their own loveliness;
And there were sudden partings, such as press
The life from out young hearts, and choking sighs
Which ne'er might be repeated; who could guess

If ever more should meet those mutual eyes,
Since upon nights so sweet such awful morn could rise ?

And there was mounting in hot haste; the steed,
The mustering squadron, and the clattering car,
Went pouring forward with impetuous speed,
And swiftly forming in the ranks of war;

« ForrigeFortsett »