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NAOMI.

BENINA.

IMLAH.

NAOMI.

Hath bless'd me; from the very festal garments,

IMAH. That glitter'd in my halls, they shake the dust : My Father's God, thou show'dst thyself of old, Ev'n the priests spurn'd me, as abhorrid of Heaven. By smiting water from the stony rock, Oh! but the fiery Mede doth well avenge me! And raining manna on the desert sands! They're strew'd beneath my feet — though not in Here is thy best-most gracious miracle! worship!

Making the childless heart to laugh with gladness ; Oh death! death! death! that art so swift to seize The eyes that had forgot to weep o'erflow The conqueror on his triumph day, the bride With tears delicious! Thou hast raised the dead, Ere yet her wedding lamps have waned, the king And to the widow given her shrouded child ! Where all mankind are kneeling at his footstool But what was that pale boy to her that stands Thou 'rt only slow to him that knows himself So beautiful before us? What was death Thy fated prey, that seeks within the tomb

To her dark trial? And she's here—and life
A dark retreat from wretchedness and shame. Bounds in her bosom—the young doves that erst,
From shame!- the heir of Nabonassar's glory! Ere yet the cold airs soil'd their snowy plumes,
From wretchedness !--the Lord of Babylon Were offer'd in thy Temple not so pure!
Of golden and luxurious Babylon!
Alas! through burning Babylon! the fallen,

How camest thou bither?
The city of lamentation and of slaughter!
A fugitive and outcast, that can find,

Ask of him that led me Of all his realm, not even a grave!-so base, Of him—that all but I seem to have forgotten. That even the conquering Mede disdains to slay him!

ADONIJAH.
Love, I shall take a sweet revenge hereafter,

Resuming to myself the boon that now
Before the House of Imlah.

They have no time to thank me for-What's he,
IMLAH, ADONIJAH, BENINA, NAOMI.

That rushes where proud War disdains to spoil?
That tread was wont to move in marble halls.

To sounds of music. Round his limbs, that shake Naomni! Naomi! look forth-she's here!

And quiver, as with pain, he wraps his robes,

Like one men wont to gaze on. Even despair I know she is—in dreams: through all the night

On such a brow looks noble !-Hark! he speaks
I've seen her, gliding from the fountain side
With the pure urn of water, or with lips

The above, BELSHAZZAR.
A part, and bashful voice, that faintly breathed
One of her country's songs! I've seen her kneeling "T is come at last! the barbed arrow drinks
In prayer, alas! that ne'er was heard on high!

My life-blood. 'Mid the base abode of slaves
And thou hast scared my vision's joys away-

I seem to stand: not here—my fathers set To see-all heav'n on fire, and the vast city

Like suns in glory! I'll not perish here, Imlah! what mean those massy clouds of smoke, And stifle like some vile, forgotten lamp! Those shrieks and clashings? — and — that youth Oh, dreadful God! is 't not enough ?—My state and maid,

I equall'd with the Heavens—and wilt thou trample Why stand they there ? we need no sad remembran

Beneath these-What are ye that crowd around me? Of our deep desolation !

I have a dim remembrance of your forms

And voices. Are ye not the slaves that stood
Doth my mother

This morn before me! and-
With such cold salutation welcome home
Her child ?

Thou spurn'dst us from thee.

BELSHAZZAR. No! no! ye can no more delude me! Twice have I woken, and heard that voice, and And ye 'll revenge you on the clay-cold corpse. stretch'd

Fear not: our God, and this world's cruel usage, My arms —

Have taught us early what kings learn too late.

BELSHAZZAR.
But hast not folded to thy bosom,

Ye know me, then-ye know the King of BabylonAs thus, thy child, thy lost, thy loved Benina !

The King of dust and ashes ? for what else NAOMI. 'Tis living flesh! it is a breathing lip!

Is now the beauteous city-earth's delight?

And what the King himself but-dust and ashes ?
And the heart swells like-Oh no!--not like mine!
Oh! thou twice born! the sorrow and the joy

BENINA.
That I endured to bring my beauteous babe He faints-support him, dearest Adonijah!
Into the world were nought to this!

Mine eyes are heavy, and a swoon, a sleep

Dear mother, Swims o'er my head :-go, summon me the lutes, May I ne'er cost thee bitterer tears than these That used to soothe me to my balmiest slumbers,

BELSHAZZAR.

me

cers

BENINA.

JMLAH.

NAOMI.

IMLAH.

BENINA.

BELSHAZZAR.

BENINA.

IMLAH

NITOCRIS.

ADONIJAH.

IMLAH.

BELSHAZZAR.

And bid the snowy-handed maidens fan

And nestle his young cheek in this full bosom,
The dull, hot air around me. "T' is not well-

That now he shrinks from! No! it is the last
This bed—'t is hard and damp. I gave command Convulsive shudder of cold death. My son,
I would not lie but on the softest plumes

Wait,wait, and I will die with thee-not yetThat the birds bear. Slaves! hear ye not? – 't is. Alas! yet this was what I pray'd for-thiscold

To kiss thy cold cheek, and inhale thy last-'Tis piercing cold

Thy dying breath.
PENINA.
Alas! he's little used

Behold! behold, they rise ;
To feel the night winds on his naked brow: Feebly they stand, by their united strengih
He's breathing still — spread o'er him that bright Supported. Haih yon kindling of the darkness,
mantle;

Yon blaze, that seems as if the earth and heaven A strange, sad use for robes of sovereignty.

Were mingled in one ghastly funeral pile.

Aroused them? Lo, the flames, like a gorged serpent The above, NiTOCRIS.

That slept in glittering but scarce-moring folds,

Now, having sprung a nobler prey, break out
Why should I pass street after street, through flames

In tenfold rage.
That make the hardy conqueror shrink; and stride
O'er heaps of dying, that look up and wonder

How like a lioness,
To see a living and unwounded being ?

Robb’d of her kingly brood, she glares! She wipes Oh! mercifully cruel, they do slay

From her wan brow the grey discolourd locks
The child and mother with one blow! the bride

Where used to gleam Assyria's diadem;
And bridegroom! I alone am spared, to die And now and then her tenderest glance recurs
Remote from all — from him with whom I've cher- To him that closer to her bleeding heart
ish'd

She clasps, as self-reproachful that aught earthly A desperate hope to mingle my cold ashes !

Distracts her from her one maternal care. "T is all the daughter of great Nabonassar Hath now to ask !—I 'll sit me down and listen,

More pole, and more inteni, he looks abroad And through that turbulent din of clattering steel,

Into the ruin, as though he felt a pride And cries of murder'd men, and smouldering houses, Even in the splendour of the desolation! And th' answering trumpets of the Mede and Persian, Summoning their bands to some new work of slaugh- The hand — the unbodied hand – it moves

- look ter,

there! Anon one universal cry of triumph Will burst; and all the city, either host,

Look where it points !-my beautiful palaceIn mute and breathless admiration, lie

Look-
To hear the o'erpowering clamour that announces
Belshazzar slain!-and then I'll rise and rush

The Temple of great Bel-
To that dread place-they 'll let me weep or die
Upon his corpse !—Old man, thou’st found thy child ?

Our halls of joy!
I have-I have-and thine. Oh! rise not thus, Earth's pride and wonder!
In thy majestic joy, as though to mount
Earth's throne again. Behold the King!

Ay, o'er both the fire Mounts like a conqueror: here, o'er spacious courts My son!

And avenues of pillars, and long roofs, On the cold earth-not there, but on my bosom From which red streams of molten gold pour down Alas! that's colder still. My beauteous boy, It spreads, till all, like those vast fabrics, seem Look up and see

Built of the rich clouds round the setting sun

All the wide heavens, one bright and shadowy pat I can see nought-all's darkness ! ace!

But terrible here—th' Almighty's wrathful hand Too true: he 'll die, and will not know me! Son! Every where manifest !—There the Temple stands, Thy mother speaks—thy only kindred Aesh,

Tower above tower, one pyramid of flame; That loved thee ere thou wert; and, when thou 'rt To which those kingly sepulchres by Nile gone,

Were but as hillocks to vast Caucasus ! Will love thee still the more !

Aloof, the wreck of Nimrod's impious tower

Alone is dark; and something like a cloud,

Have dying kings But gloomier, hovers o'er it. All is mute: Lovers or kindred? Hence! disturb me not. Man's cries, and clashing steel, and braying trumpet NITOCRIS.

The only sound the rushing noise of fire ! Shall I disturb thee, crouching by thy side

Now, hark! the universal crash-at once To die with thee? Oh! how he used to turn They fall-they sink

NITOCRIS.

BELSHAZZAR.

IMLAH.

NITOCRIS.

IMLAH.

NITOCRIS.

BELSHAZZAR.

NITOCRIS.

BELSHAZZAR.

Note
The God reposes, must the chosen Virgin.

See Herodotus, Clio.

ADONIJAH.

And so do those that ruled them!
The Palace, and the Temple, and the race
Of Nabonassar, are at once extinct!
Babylon and her kings are fallen for ever!

IMLAH.
Without a cry, without a groan, behold them,
Th' Imperial mother and earth-ruling son,
Stretch'd out in death! Nor she without a gleam
of joy expiring with her cheek on his :
Nor he unconscious that with him the pride
And terror of the world is fallen-th' abode
And throne of universal empire-now
A plain of ashes round the tombless dead!

Oh, God of hosts ! Almighty, everlasting!
God of our Fathers, thou alone art great!

Note 4.
Down to the red and pearly main.
The Erythrean Sea, the Gulf of Persia, celebrated
for the pearls of Ormuz.

Note 5.
The golden statue stands of Nabonongar.
It does not appear certain what this statue was,
which Nebuchadnezzar erected on the plain of Dura.
I have taken the poetic license of supposing it to be
his own.

Note 6.
Thou Zedekiah, didst desert thy God.
Zedekiah, carried away at the last and final desola-
tion of Jerusalem.

Note 7.
We drink Mylitta's breathing balm.
The Assyrian Venus. — Herod.

Note 8.
And, through the deep and roaring Naharmalcha.
The royal canal which connected the waters of the
Euphrates with the artificial lake.

NOTES.

Note 1.

or Nabonagsar's sway. " Nebuchadnessar-Nabonassar-Ce nom est confondu par les Orientaux avec celui de Nabocadnassar, quoique les Grecs et les Latins les distinguent."

D' Herbclot, Bibl, Orientale.

Note 2.
Save with the immaculate blood of yearling lambs.

From Diodorus.

The Fall of Jerusalem;

A DRAMATIC POEM.

INTRODUCTION.

the Galilean was that of excessive sensuality, I have

therefore considered him as belonging to the sect of Every reader will at once perceive from the nature the Sadducees ; Simon, on the other hand, I have reof the interest, and from the language, that this drama presented as a native of Jerusalem, and a strict Phawas neither written with a view to public represent- risee ; although his soldiers were chiefly Edomites. ation, nor can be adapted to it without being entirely The Christians, we learn from Eusebius, abandoned re-modelled and re-written. The critic will draw the the city previous to the siege (by divine command, same conclusion from certain peculiarities in the com. according to that author,) and took refuge in Pella, a position, irreconcileable with the arrangements of the small town on the further side of the Jordan. The theatre; the introducing and dismissing of the subor. constant tradition of the Church has been, that no one dinate characters after a single appearance ; and yet professing that faith perished during all the havoc appropriating to them some of the most poetical which attended on this most awful visitation. speeches.

It has been my object also to show the full compleThe groundwork of the poem is to be found in tion of prophecy in this great event; nor do I conceive Josephus, but the events of a considerable time are that the public mind (should this poem merit attention) compressed into a period of about thirty-six hours. can be directed to so striking and so incontestable an Though their children are fictitious characters, the evidence of the Christian faith without advantage. leaders of the Jews, Simon, John, and Eleazar, are Those whom duty might not induce to compare the historical. At the beginning of the siege the defend long narrative of Josephus with the Scriptural preers of the city were divided into three factions. John, diction of the “Abomination of Desolation,” may be however, having surprised Eleazar, who occupied the tempted by the embellishments of poetic language Temple, during a festival, the party of Eleazar became and the interest of a dramatic fable. subordinate to that of John. The character of John

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| Daughters of Simon.

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TITUS.

CHARACTERS.

They turn their civil weapons on themselves,
Even till insatiate War shrinks to behold

The hideous consummation.
ROMANS.
Titus.

TITUS.
Caius PLACIDUS.

It must be TIBERIUS ALEXANDER.

And yet it moves me, Romans! it confounds TERENTIUS Rufus.

The counsels of my firm philosophy, Diagoras, a Stoic philosopher.

That Ruin's merciless ploughshare must pass o'er,
Joseph (the Historian,) with the Roman Army. And barren salt be sown on yon proud city.
Soldiers, etc.

As on our olive-crowned hill we stand,
JEWS IN THE CITY.

Where Kedron at our feet its scanty waters
SIMON, the Assassin.

Distils from stone to stone with gentle motion, John, the Tyrant.

As through a valley sacred 10 sweet peace, ELEAZAR, the Zealot.

How boldly doth it front us! how majestically! AMARIAH, Son of John.

Like a luxurious vineyard, the hill side The High-PRIEST.

Is hung with marble fabrics, line o'er line, Ben Catala, Leader of the Edomites.

Terrace o'er terrace, nearer still, and nearer AARON, a Levite.

To the blue heavens. Here bright and sumptuous Abiram, a fulse Prophet.

palaces, Many Jews.

With cool and verdant gardens interspersed; Javan, a Christian, by birth a Jew.

Here towers of war that frown in massy strength. MIRIAM,

While over all hangs the rich purple eve,
SALONE,

As conscious of its being her last farewell
Of light and glory to that fated city.

And, as our clouds of battle dust and smoke
THE FALL OF JERUSALEM.

Are melted into air, behold the Temple,

In undisturb'd and lone serenity
The Mount of Olives--Evening.

Finding itself a solemn sanctuary
Titus, Caius Placidus, Tiberius ALEXANDER, TE- In the profound of heaven! It stands before us

A mount of snow frelied with golden pinnacles! (2)
RENTIUS Rufus, DIAGORAS, etc.

The very sun, as though he worshipp'd there,

Lingers upon the gilded cedar roofs ; ADVANCE the eagles, Caius Placidus, (1)

And down the long and branching porticoes, Even to the walls of this rebellious city!

On every flowery-sculptured capital, What! shall our bird of conquest, that hath flown

Glitters the homage of his parting beams. Over the world, and built her nest of glory

By Hercules! the sight might almost win Even in the palace tops of prondest kings,

The offended majesty of Rome to mercy.
What! shall she check and pause here in her circle,

TIBERIUS ALEXANDER.
Her centre of dominion ? By the gods,
It is a treason to all-conquering Rome,

Wondrous indeed it is, great Son of Cæsar,
That thus our baMed legions stand at bay

But it shall be more wondrous, when the triumph
Before this hemm'd and famishing Jerusalem.

Of Titus marches through those brazen gates,
Which seem as though they would invite the world

To worship in the precincts of her Temple,
Son of Vespasian! I have been a soldier,

As he in laurellid pomp is borne along
Till the helm hath worn mine aged temples bare.
Battles have been familiar to mine eyes

To that new palace of his pride.
As is the sunlight, and the angry Mars
Wears not a terror to appal the souls

Tiberius!
Of constant men, but I have fronted it.

It cannot be
I have seen the painted Briton sweep to battle
On his scythed car, and when he fell, he fell

What cannot be, which Rome
As one that honour'd death by nobly dying.

Commands, and Titus, the great heir of Rome!
And I have been where flying Parthians shower'd
Their arrows, making the pursuer check

I tell thee, Alexander, it must fall!
His fierce steed with the sudden grasp of death. Yon lofty city, and yon gorgeous Temple,
But war like this, so frantic and so desperate, Are consecrate to Ruin. Earth is weary
Man ne'er beheld. Our swords are blunt with slaying, of the wild factions of this jealous people,
And yet, as though the earth cast up again

And they must feel our wrath, the wrath of Rome;
Souls discontented with a single death,

Even so that the rapt stranger shall admire
They grow beneath the slaughter. Neither battle, Where that proud city stood, which was Jerusalem
Nor famine, nor the withering pestilence,

DIAGORAS.
Subdues these prodigals of blood : by day

Thy brethren of the Porch, imperial Titus, (3) They cast their lives upon our swords; by night Of late esteem'd thee at the height of those

PLACIDUS.

TITUS.

TIBERIUS.

TITUS.

That with consummate wisdom have tamed down
The fierce and turbulent passions which distract
The vulgar soul; they deem'd that, like Olympus,
Thou, on thy cold and lofty eminence,
Severely didst maintain thy sacred quiet
Above the clouds and tumult of low earth.
But now we see thee stooping to the thraldom
Of every fierce affection, now entranced
In deepest admiration, and anon
Wrath hath the absolute empire o'er thy soul.
Methinks we must unschool our royal pupil,
And cast him back to the common herd of men.

TITUS.
'Tis true, Diagoras; yet wherefore ask not,
For vainly have I question'd mine own reason :
But thus it is—I know not whence or how,
There is a stern command upon my soul.
I feel the inexorable fate within
That tells me, carnage is a duty here,
And that the appointed desolation chides
The tardy vengeance of our war. Diagoras,
If that I err, impeach my tenets. Destiny
Is over all, and hard Necessity
Holds o'er the shifting course of human things
Her paramount dominion. Like a flood
The irresistible stream of fate flows on,
And urges in its vast and sweeping motion
Kings, Consuls, Cæsars, with their mightiest armies,
Each to his fix'd, inevitable end.
Yea, even eternal Rome, and Father Jove,
Sternly submissive, sail that onward tide.
And now am I upon its rushing bosom,
I feel its silent billows swell beneath me,
Bearing me and the conquering arms of Rome
'Gainst yon devoted city. On they pass,
And ages yet to come shall pause and wonder
At the utter wreck, which they shall leave behind them.

But, Placidus, I read thy look severe. This is no time nor place for school debates On the high points of wisdom. Let this night Our wide encircling walls complete their circuit; (4) And still the approaching trenches closer mine Their secret way: the engines and the lowers Stand each at their appointed post—Terentius, That charge be thine.

Rejoicing at the blessings that thou bearest.
Pure, stainless, thou art flowing on; the stars
Make thee their mirror, and the moonlight beams
Course one another o'er thy silver bosom :
And yet thy flowing is through fields of blood,
And arm'd men their hot and weary brow's
Slake with thy limpid and perennial coolness.

Even with such rare and singular purity
Movest thou, oh Miriam, in yon cruel city.
Men's eyes, o'erwearied with the sights of war,
With tumult and with grief, repose on thee
As on a refuge and a sweet refreshment.
Thou canst o'erawe, thou in thy gentleness,
A trembling, pale, and melancholy maid,
The brutal violence of ungodly men.
Thou glidest on amid the dark pollution
In modesty unstain'd; and heavenly influences,
More lovely than the light of star or moon,
As though delighted with their own reflection
From spirit so pure, dwell evermore upon thee.

Oh! how dost thou, beloved proselyte
To the high creed of him who died for men,
Oh! how dost thou commend the truths I teach thee,
By the strong faith and soft humility
Wherewith thy soul embraces them? Thou prayest,
And I, who pray with thee, feel my words wing'd,
And holier servour gushing from my heart,
While heaven seems smiling kind acceptance down
On the associate of so pure a worshipper.
But ah! why comest thou not? these two long

nights I've watch'd for thee in vain, and have not felt The music of thy footsteps on my spirit —

VOICE AT A DISTANCE.
Javan!

JAVAN.
It is her voice! the air is fond of it,
And enviously delays its tender sounds
From the ear that thirsteth for them-Miriam !

JAVAN, Miriam.

JAVAN.
Nay, stand thus in thy timid breathlessness,
That I may gaze on thee, and thou not chide me
Because I gaze too fondly.

MIRIAM.

Hast thou brought me Thy wonted offerings?

JAVAN.

Dearest, they are here:
The bursting fig, the cool and ripe pomegranate,
The skin all rosy with the imprison'd wine;
All I can bear thee, more than thou canst bear
Home to the city.

TERENTIUS.

There spoke again the Roman.
Faith! like old Mummius, I should give to the flame
Whate'er opposed the sovereign sway of Cæsar, (5)
If it were wrought of massy molten gold:
And though I wear a beard, I boast not much
Of my philosophy. But this I know,
That to oppose the omnipotent arms of Rome
Is to pluck down and tempt a final doom.

MIRIAM

The Fountain of Siloe.-Night.

JAVAN.

Sweet fountain, once again I visit thee!(6)
And thou art flowing on, and freshening still
The green moss, and the flowers that bend to thee,
Modestly with a soft unboastful murmur,

Bless thee !-Oh my father!
How will thy famish'd and thy toil-bow'd frame
Resume its native majesty! thy words,
When this bright draught hath slaked thy parched lips,
Flow with their wonted freedom and command.

JAVAN.
Thy father! still no thought but of thy father'
Nay, Miriam! but thou must hear me now,

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