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I have no weight, no heaviness on my foul,
But that I've lost my dearest friend his life.
South. And I protest, by the same powers divine,
And to the world, 'tis all my happiness,
The greatest bliss my mind yet e’er enjoy'd,
Since we must die, my Lord, to die together.
Officer. The Queen, my Lord Southampton, has been
To grant particular mercy to your person;
And has by us sent you a reprieve from death,
With pardon of your treasons, and commands
You to depart immediately from hence.
South. O my unguarded soul! Sure never was
A man with
mercy wounded so before ! Ess. Then I am loose to steer my wand'ring voyage; Like a bad vessel that has long been croft, And bound by adverse winds, at last gets liberty, And joyfully makes all the fail she can, To reach its wish’d-for port_Angels protect The Queen, for her my chiefest prayers shall be, That as in time she has spar'd my noble friend, And owns his crimes worth mercy, may she ne'er Think fo of me too late when I am deadAgain, Southampton, let me hold thee fast, For 'tis my last embrace.
South. O be less kind, my friend, or move less pity,
Or I shall fink beneath the weight of sadness!
I weep that I am doom'd to live without you,
And should have smild to share the death of Eflex.
Ess. O spare this tenderness for one that needs it,
For her that I commit to thee, 'tis all that I
Can claim of my Southampton - my wife !
Methinks that very name should stop thy pity,
And make thee covetous of all as loft
That is not meant to her-be a kind friend
To her, as we have been to one another;
Name not the dying Essex to thy Queen,
Left it should cost a tear, nor e'er offend her.
South. O stay, my Lord, let me have one word more »
One last farewel, before the greedy axe
Shall part my friend, my only friend from me,
And Effex from himself-I know not what
Are call’d the pangs of death, but sure I am
I feel an agony that's worse than death-
Ess, Why, that's well said Farewel to thee-
Then let us part, just like two travellers,
Take distant paths, only this difference is,
Thine is the longest, mine the shortest way-
Now let me go if there's a throne in heaven
For the mont brave of men and best of friends,
I will bespeak it for Southampton.
SOUTH. And I, while I have life, will hoard thy memory : When I am dead, we then shall meet again.
Ess. Till then, Farewel.
SOUTH. Till then, Farewel.
EARL OF Essex,
Jarr. By, Heav’n
, you ftir not,
I must be heard, I must have leave to speak : Thou hast disgrac'd me, Pierre, by a vile blow:
Had not a dagger done thee nobler justice?
But use me as thou wilt, thou can'st not wrong me,
For I am fallen beneath the basest injuries :
Yet look upon me with an eye of mercy,
With pity and with charity behold me;
Shut not thy heart against a friend's repentance;
But, as there dwells a godlike nature in thee,
Liften with mildness to my supplications.
Pier. What whining monk art thou? what holy cheat,
That would'It incroach upon my credulous ears,
And cant'st thus vilely? hence! I know thee not.
JAFF. Not know me, Pierre!
Pier. No, know thee not; what art thou?
JAFP. Jaffier, thy friend, thy once lov’d, valu'd friend ! Tho' now deferv'diy scorn'd, and us'd moft hardly.
Pier. Thou Jaffier! thou my once lov’d, valu'd friend! By heav'ns thou ly'it; the man so callid my friend, Was generous, honeft, faithful, jult, and valiant, Noble in mind, and in his person lovely, Dear to my eyes, and tender to my heart : But thou a wretched, base, false, worthless coward, Poor even in soul, and loathsome in thy aspect : All eyes must fhun thee, and all hearts deteft thee. Prithee avoid, nor longer cling thus round me, Like something baneful, that my nature's chill'd at.
JAFF. I have not wrong’d thee, by these tears I have not, But still am honeft, true, and hope too, valiant; My mind Aill full of thee, therefore still noble. Let not thy eyes then shun me, nor thy heart Deteft me utterly : Oh! look upon me, Look back and see my fad, sincere submission! How my heart swells, as e'en 'twould burst my bosom ;
Fond of its goal, and labouring to be at thee;
What shall I do? what say to make thee hear me?
Pier. Hast thou not wrong'd me? dar'ft thou call thyself
That once lov'd valu'd friend of mine,
And swear thou hast not wrong'd me? Whence these chains?
Whence the vile death, which I may meet this moment?
Whence this dishonour, but from thee, thou false one?
· JAFF. All's true; yet grant one thing, and I've done
alking Pier. What's that?
JAFF. To take thy life on such conditions
The council have propos’d: thou and thy friend
May yet live long, and to be better treated.
Pier. Life! ask my life! confess! record myself
A villain for the privilege to breathe,
And carry up and down this cursed city
A discontented and repining spirit,
Burdensome to itself, a few years longer,
To lose it, may be at last, in a lewd quarrel
For some new friend, treacherous and faise as thou art!
No, this vile world and I have long been jangling,
And cannot part on better terms than now,
When only men like thee are fit to live in't,
JAFF: By all that's just
PIER. Swear by some other powers,
For thou hast broken that sacred oath too lately.
Jarf. Then by that hell I merit, I'll not leave thee,
Till to thyself at leail thou’rt reconcil'd,
However thy resentment deal with me.
Pier. Not leave me !
JAFF. No; thou shalt not force me from thee; Use me reproachfully, and like a flave;
Tread on me, buffet me, heap wrongs on wrongs,
On my poor head; I'll bear it all with patience;
I'll weary out thy most friendly cruelty:
Lie at thy feet and kiss 'em, tho' they spurn me,
Till wounded by my sufferings thou relent,
And raise me to thy arms with dear forgiveness.
Pier. Art thou note
Pier. A traitor?
Pier. A villain ?
Puer. A coward, a moft fcandalous coward,
Spiritless, void of honour, one who has fold
Thy everlasting fame for shameless life?
JAFF. All, all, and more, much more: my faults are
numberless. PIER. And would'At thou have me live on terms like thine; Base as thou'rt falfe
JAFF. No; 'tis to me that's granted :
The safety of thy life was all I aim'd at,
In recompence for faith and trust so broken.
Pier. I scorn it more, because preferv'd by thee;
And as when first my foolish heart took pity
On thy misfortunes, fought thee in thy miseries,
Reliev!d thy wants, and rais'd thee from thy ftate
Of wretchedness, in which thy fate had plung'd thee,
To rank thee in my lift of noble friends;
All I receiv'd, in furety for thy truth,
Were unregarded oaths, and this, this dagger,
Given with a worthless pledge thou fince haft fol'n:
So I restore it back to thee again ;