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If we could take or kill him!-A plague on ye,
How fierce ye look!-See, how he broods the boy!
The devil dwells in 's scabbard. Back, I say,
Apace, apace! 'has found us!

[They retire. Caratach. Do ye hunt us? Hengo. Uncle, good uncle, see! the thin starved rascal,


The eating Roman, see where he thrids the thickets! Kill him, dear uncle, kill him!

Caratach. Do ye make us foxes? Here, hold my charging-staff, and keep the place, boy. I am at bay, and like a bull I'll bear me. Stand, stand, ye rogues, ye squirrels.

[Exit, in pursuit. A loud cry is heard within. Hengo. Now he pays 'em: 45 Oh, that I had a man's strength.

Judas sneaks in.


Mine own, I thank my fortune.
Hengo [shouting].

Famine is fallen upon me, uncle!


Here's the boy;

Uncle, uncle!

Come, sir,

Yield willingly (your uncle's out of hearing),
I'll tickle your young tail else.

Hengo [standing on the defensive with the staff]. I defy



Thou mock-made man of mat! charge home, sirrah! Hang thee, base slave, thou shak'st.


[Aside.] Upon my conscience, The boy will beat me: how it looks, how bravely! How confident the worm is! a scabbed boy To handle me thus. [Aloud.] Yield, or I cut thy

head off.


Hengo. Thou dar'st not cut my finger; here 'tis, touch it.

Judas [aside]. The boy speaks sword and buckler. [Aloud.] Prithee, yield, boy;

Come, here's an apple; yield. [He takes a step forward,
pretending to have something in his hand.
By Heaven, he fears me! [Aside.]
I'll give you sharper language: when, you coward,
When come you up?


If he should beat me [aside]-
When, sir? 60

I long to kill thee: come, thou canst not 'scape


Judas [aside]. Sure, 'tis the devil-a dwarf-devil in a doublet!

Hengo. I have killed a captain, sirrah, a brave captain; And, when I have done, I have kicked him, thus. [He flies at Judas, and kicks him.] Look here; See how I charge this staff! Judas [retreating]. Most certain This boy will cut my throat yet.


Two of the Soldiers run in, scared.

First Soldier.
Flee, flee! he kills us!
Second Soldier. He comes, he comes !
The devil take the hindmost!
[Judas and the Soldiers run away.
Hengo. Run, run, ye rogues, ye precious rogues, ye
rank rogues!

'A comes, 'a comes, 'a comes, 'a comes! that's he,


What a brave cry they make !


Re-enter Caratach with a Soldier's head. How does my chicken? 70 Hengo. Faith, uncle, grown a soldier, a great soldier; For, by the virtue of your charging-staff And a strange fighting face I put upon 't, I have outbraved Hunger.


The journey to my country. Fruits and water
Must be your food awhile, boy.


That's my boy, my sweet boy! Come, chicken, let's go seek some place of strength 75 (The country's full of scouts) to rest a while in; Thou wilt not else be able to endure


I can eat moss, nay, I can live on anger,
To vex these Romans. Let's be wary, uncle.
Caratach. I warrant thee, come cheerfully.
And boldly. [Exeunt.




Poenius, the captain who had nobly spared Caratach, disobeyed the orders of Suetonius to send his troops to what seemed certain death. Suetonius won the battle without him. Unable to face the dishonour, Poenius killed himself.

Caratach is discovered upon a rock in the background, and Hengo by him sleeping.

Caratach. Thus we afflicted Britons climb for safeties, And, to avoid our dangers, seek destructions. The boy begins to stir-thy safety made, Would my soul were in heaven!


Oh, noble uncle, Look out! I dreamed we were betrayed. [A soft dead march within. Caratach. No harm, boy; 5 'Tis but thy emptiness that breeds these fancies: Thou shalt have meat anon.


A little, uncle, And I shall hold out bravely. What are those (Look, uncle, look), those multitudes that march there? They come upon us stealing by.

Enter Drusus, Regulus, and Soldiers, with Poenius' hearse, drums, and colours.


My sweet chicken, 10 See, they have reached us; and, as it seems, they bear Some soldier's body, by their solemn gestures And sad solemnities; it well appears too To be of eminence.

[He shows himself on the rock, and calls to the Soldiers. Most worthy soldiers, Let me entreat your knowledge to inform me What noble body that is, which you bear With such a sad and ceremonious grief? Excellent Romans, by your ancient valours, As ye love fame, resolve me.

First Soldier.

'Tis the body Of the great captain Poenius, by himself Made cold and spiritless.

Oh stay, ye Romans,
By the religion which you owe those gods
That lead ye on to victories! by those glories



Which made even pride a virtue in ye!

What's thy will, Caratach ?

Set down the body, 25
The body of the noblest of all Romans;
As ye expect an offering at your graves
From your friends' sorrows, set it down a while,
That with your griefs an enemy may mingle
(A noble enemy that loves a soldier),
And lend a tear to virtue: even your foes,
Your 'wild foes', as you called us, are yet stored
With fair affections, our hearts fresh, our spirits,
Though sometimes stubborn, yet, when virtue dies,
Soft and relenting as a virgin's prayers:

Oh, set it down!



So good a man?

Stay. [The Soldiers halt.

Hengo. He died before I was born.



Set down the body, soldiers. Caratach. Thou hallowed relic, thou rich diamond Cut with thine own dust; thou, for whose wide fame The world appears too narrow, thus I bow To thy most honoured ashes-though an enemy, Yet friend to all thy worths. Sleep peaceably; Happiness crown thy soul, and in thy earth Some laurel fix his seat, there grow and flourish, And make thy grave an everlasting triumph! Farewell all glorious wars, now thou art gone, And honest arms adieu! all noble battles Maintained in thirst of honour, not of blood, Farewell for ever!

Was this Roman, uncle,

Thou never knew'st thy father.




This worthy Roman 50 Was such another piece of endless honour, Such a brave soul dwelt in him; their proportions And faces were not much unlike, boy. [Hengo weeps.]

Excellent nature!

See how it works into his eyes! [aside]-Mine own boy,
Oh, now thou pleasest me! weep still, my child, 55
As if thou saw'st me dead; with such a flux
Or flood of sorrow; still thou pleasest me.
And, worthy soldiers, pray, receive these pledges,

[He gives them Hengo's scarf and his own plume.

These hatchments of our griefs, and grace us so much To place 'em on his hearse. [They lay the offerings on the body.] Now, if ye please,


Bear off the noble burden; raise his pile,
And ever-lovèd, ever-living be
His honoured and most sacred memory!

Drusus. Thou hast done honestly, good Caratach ; And when thou diest, a thousand virtuous Romans 65 Shall sing thy soul to heaven. Now march on, [Exeunt Romans with a dead march. Caratach. Now dry thine eyes, my boy. If but this



Thou canst bear out thy faintness, the night coming I'll fashion our escape.


Pray, fear not me;

Indeed I am very hearty.
Be so still :
His mischiefs lessen, that controls all ill.



Caratach has been tracked to his last hiding-place. Enter Macer and Judas, creeping through the trees with meat and a bottle which they take to a rock in the background.

Macer. Hang it o' the side o' the rock, as though the

Stole hither to relieve him: who first ventures
To fetch it off is ours. I cannot see him.


Judas. He lies close in a hole above, I know it, Gnawing upon his anger. [A gust of wind blows through the leaves; he jumps back.] Ha! no; 'tis not he. Macer. 'Tis but the shaking of the boughs. Judas. I am sure they shake me soundly. There! Macer.

Plague shake 'em!

'Tis nothing.

Judas. Make no noise; if he stir, a deadly tem


Of huge stones fall upon us. 'Tis done away, close!


Caratach comes out on the rock.

Caratach. Sleep still, sleep sweetly, child; 'tis all thou feed'st on:


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