Heraclius, Emperour of the East a tragedy
Corneille, Pierre, 1606-1684., Carlell, Lodowick, 1602?-1675.
ACT III. SCEN. III.
Phocas, Pulcheria, Exuperius, Amintas, Guards and Attendants.
NOr canst thou hope, fond fool, to alter me,
Having thy Brother, there's no fear of thee.
No more constrain my self, for thy love plead,
One stroke abates thy pride, takes off his head:
Do not restrain thy self, come, vent thy Gall,
No words to ease thy heart, then tears must fall.
I grieve, I weep, I well might so have done,
Had he appear'd less than our Father's Son;
I am so pleas'd with all that he did do,
That though his Sister I'm his Lover too.
Dissemble not, freely express your heart,
From me you scarce can hide it by this Art:
Page 32Will you, to save so dear a Brothers life,
Lay by your hate, and be my Martians Wife?
Think'st thou thy policies can ever gain
Me to consent to what I so disdain?
My bloud, to save his life i'le sacrifice;
But so to give my hand, my honour dies.
Well, then he dies; thy cruelty's the cause,
Whose pride contemns both Love and Natures Laws.
Thou that my crueltie dost thus upbraid,
For thy own crueltie mayst be afraid.
Though human vengeance scarce can reach thy head,
There's thunder yet above to strike thee dead:
Nor dost thou know, some Brother yet of mine
To punish thee, the Grave may now resign,
Or he might scape thy hands by some device
More subjects there might be both stout and wise:
And thou shalt never know that he does live,
Till by thy death he thee assurance give.
If no such be, I make my self a prize,
And all my youth and greatness sacrifice;
For, whosoere can take away thy life,
The worlds Plague, deserves the greatest Wife.
Go kill Heraclius, or think that I
Do hope to save him, by this policy;
Be not deceiv'd importune me no more,
Since I can say but what was said before;
If you grant this, I will safe counsel give,
If you would reign, we both must die, or live.