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CU. In happy hour then is Cusay come. JoAB. What news then brings lord Cusay from the king? CU. His majesty commands thee out of hand To send him home Urias from the wars, For matter of some service he should do. UR. "Tis for no choler hath surpris'd the king, I hope, lord Cusay, 'gainst his servant's truth 2 Cu. No; rather to prefer Urias' truth. JoAB. Here, take him with thee then, and go in peace; And tell my lord the king that I have fought Against the city Rabbah with success, And scaled where the royal palace is, The conduit heads, and all their sweetest springs: Then let him come in person to these walls, With all the soldiers he can bring besides, And take the city as his own exploit: Lest I surprize it, and the people give The glory of the conquest to my name. CU. We will, lord Joab; and, great Israel's God Bless in thy hands the battles of our king ! JoAB. Farewell, Urias; haste away the king. U.R. As sure as Joab breathes a victor here, Urias will haste him, and his own return. [Exeunt Cusay and Urias. ABIs. Let us descend, and ope the palace’ gate, Taking our soldiers in to keep the hold. JoAB. Let us, Abisai:-and ye, sons of Judah, Be valiant, and maintain your victory. [Exeunt. AMMON, Jon ADAB, JETHRAY and AMMON's Page.

Jon AD. What means my lord, the king's"beloved
SOn,
That wears upon his right triumphant arm,
The power of Israel for a royal favour,
That holds upon the tables of his hands
Banquets of honour, and all thought's content,
To suffer pale and grisly abstinence
To sit and feed upon his fainting cheeks,
And suck away the blood that cheers his looks?
AM. Ah, Jonadab, it is my sister's looks,
On whose sweet beauty I bestow my blood,
That makes me look so amorously lean;
Her beauty having seiz'd upon my heart,
So merrily consecrate to her content,
Sets now such guard about his vital blood,
And views the passage with such piercing eyes,
That none can scape to cheer my pining cheeks, .
But all is thought too little for her love.
Jon AD. Then from her heart thy looks shall be
reliev'd,
And thou shalt 'joy her as thy soul desires.
AM. How can it be, my sweet friend Jonadab,
Since Thamar is a virgin and my sister?
Jon AD. Thus it shall be: lie down upon thy bed,
Feigning thee fever-sick, and ill at ease;
And, when the king shall come to visit thee,
Desire thy sister Thamar may be sent
To dress some dainties for thy malady:

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Then when thou hast her solely with thyself,
Enforce some favour to thy manly love.
See, where she comes; entreat her in with thee.

Enter THAMAR.

THA. What aileth Ammon with such sickly looks, To daunt the favour of his lovely face?

AM. Sweet Thamar, sick, and wish some whole

some cates,

Dress'd with the cunning of thy dainty hands.

THA. That hath the king commanded at my hands; Then, come, and rest thee, while I make thee ready Some dainties, easeful to thy crazed soul.

AM. I go, sweet sister, eased with thy sight.

[Ereunt. Restat Jonadab. Jon AD. Why should a prince, whose power may command,

Obey the rebel passions of his love,
When they contend but 'gainst his conscience,
And may be govern'd, or suppress'd by will?
Now, Ammon, loose those loving knots of blood,
That suck'd the courage from thy kingly heart,
And give it passage to thy wither'd cheeks.
Now, Thamar, ripen'd are the holy fruits
That grew on plants of thy virginity;
And rotten is thy name in Israel:
Poor Thamar, little did thy lovely hands
Foretel an action of such violence,
As to contend with Ammon's lusty arms,

WOL. II. C

Sinew’d with vigour of his kindless” love: Fair Thamar, now dishonour hunts thy foot, And follows thee through every covert shade, Discovering thy shame and nakedness, | Even from the valleys of Jehosaphat Up to the lofty mounts of Lebanon; Where cedars, stirr'd with anger of the winds, Sounding in storms the tale of thy disgrace, Tremble with fury, and with murmur shake Earth with their feet, and with their heads the heavens, Beating the clouds into their swiftest rack, To bear this wonder round about the world. [Exit. AMMON thrusting out THAMAR. AM. Hence from my bed, whose sight offends my soul, As doth the parbreak+ of disgorged bears. THA. Unkind, unprincely, and unmanly Ammon, To force, and then refuse thy sister's love; Adding unto the fright of thy offence The baneful torment of my publish'd shame ! O, do not this dishonour to thy love, Nor clog thy soul with such increasing sin! This second evil far exceeds the first. AM. Jethray, come, thrust this woman from my sight, And bolt the door upon her if she strive.

* kindless] i.e. unnatural. f parbreak] i.e. vomit.

JETH. Go, madam, go, away, you must be gone;

My lord hath done with you: I pray, depart.
[He shuts her out.

THA. Whither, alas! ah, whither shall I fly,
With folded arms, and all-amazed soul ?
Cast as was Eva from that glorious soil,
(Where all delights sat bating wing'd with thoughts,
Ready to nestle in her naked breasts,)
To bare and barren vales with floods made waste,
To desert woods, and hills with lightning scorch'd,
With death, with shame, with hell, with horror sit;
There will I wander from my father's face,
There Absalon, my brother Absalon,
Sweet Absalon shall hear his sister mourn,
There will I live” with my windy sighs,
Night ravens and owls to rend my bloody side,
Which with a rusty weapon I will wound,
And make them passage to my panting heart.
Why talk'st thou, wretch, and leav'st the deed un-

done 2
Enter ABs A LoN.

Rend hair, and garments, as thy heart is rent
With inward fury of a thousand griefs,
And scatter them by these unhallow'd doors,
To figure Ammon's resting cruelty,
And tragic spoil of Thamar's chastity.

ABs. What causeth Thamar to exclaim so much 2

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