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As 'twere a pause of nature; on the beach
Enter PHILOTAS, from the Cavern.
Phil. Methought the sound
Arcas, At intervals the oar's resounding stroke
Phil. Do thou retire,
Arcas. How fares
Phil. Arcas, shall I own
And lo! athwart the gloom a falling star
Eup. [Within.] Mine no hostile step;
Phil. Ha! what mean
Eup. [Within.] Here is no ambush'd Greek,
of night What art thou ? what thy errand? quickly say, Wherefore alarm'st thou thus our peaceful watch? Eup. [Within.] Let no mistrust affright thee
Lo! a wretch,
Eup. Yes; all, all rest: the very murd'rer sleeps ; Guilt is at rest: I only wake to misery! Phil. How didst thou gain the summit of the
Eup. Give me my father ; here you hold him
fetter'd; Oh! give him to meThe touch of nature throbb’d within your breast, Admit me to Evander! In these caves I know he pines in want; let ine convey Some charitable succour to a father.
Phil. Alas, Euphrasia! 'would I dare comply !
Eup. It will be virtue in thee. Thou, like me, Wert born in Greece:-Oh! by our common pa
rentNay, stay; thou shalt not fly; Philotas, stay; You have a father too; think, were his lot Hard as Evander's; if by felon bands Chain'd to the earth, with slow-consuming pangs He felt sharp want, and with an asking eye Implor'd relief, yet cruel men denied it, Would'st thou not burst thro' adamantine gates, Thro' walls and rocks, to save him? Think, Philotas, Of thy own aged sire, and pity mine. Think of the agonies a daughter feels, When thus a parent wants the common food, The bounteous hand of nature meant for all. Phil. 'Twere best withdraw thee, princess; thy
assistance Evander wants not; it is fruitless all ; Thy tears, thy wild entreaties, are in vain. Eup. Ha!--thou hast murder'd him ; he is no
Phil. Alas! this frantic grief can nought avail.
Eup. And dost thou then, inhuman that thou art!
Here will I dwell, and rave, and shriek, and give
Phil. By Heav'n,
The gen'rous impulse is not given in vain.
Eup. Raise me, raise me up;
! Phil. Yet, mark my words; if aught of nourish
ment Thou would'st convey, my partners of the watch Will ne'er consent. Eup. I will observe
orders: On any terms, oh! let me, let me see him. Phil. Yon lamp will guide thee through the ca
vern'd way. Eup. My heart runs o'er in thanks; the pious act Timoleon shall reward; the bounteous gods, And thy own virtue, shall reward the deed.
[Goes into the Cave. Phil. Prevailing, powerful virtue!--Thou subduest The stubborn heart, and mould'st it to thy purpose. Would I could save them!But tho' not for me The glorious pow'r to shelter innocence, Yet for a moment to assuage its woes, Is the best sympathy, the purest joy Nature intended for the heart of man, When thus she gave the social gen'rous tear. [Exit.
The Inside of the Cavern.
Enter ARCAs and EUPHRASIA.
Arcas. No ; on my life, I dare not.
Eup. But a small,
Arcas. Not the smallest store
Eva. [Within the Cell.] Oh, struggling nature
let thy conflict end.
Oh! give me, give me rest!
Eup. My father's voice
Arcas. Repose thee, princess, here —[Draws a
Couch..]—here rest thy limbs,
Till the returning blood shall lend thee firmness.
Eup. The caves, the rocks, re-echo to his groans ! And is there no relief?
Arcas. All I can grant You shall command. I will unbar the dungeon, Unloose the chain that binds him to the rock, And leave your interview without restraint.
[Opens a Cell in the back Scene.
Eup. Hold, hold my heart! Oh! how shall I sustain The agonizing scene? [Rises.] I must behold him; Nature, that drives me on, will lend me force. Is that my father ?