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Mem. I marvel they condemn him not at once. Even with the crown of glory in his eye,

Sen. That's not their policy; they'd have him live, At such inhuman artifice of pain
Because he fears not death; and banish him, As was forced on him ; but he did not cry
Because all earth, except his native land,

For pity; not a word nor groan escaped him,
To him is one wide prison, and each breath And those two shrieks were not in supplication,
Of foreign air he draws seems a slow poison, But wrung from pangs, and follow'd by no prayers
Consuming but not killing.

Lor. He mutter'd many times between his teeth, Mem.


But inarticulately. Confirms his crimes, but he avows them not.


That I heard not, Sen. None, save the letter, which he says was You stood more near him. written


I did so. Address'd to Milan's duke, in the full knowledge Bar.

That it would fall into the senate's hands, To my surprise too, you were touch'd with mercy,
And thus he should be reconveyed to Venice. And were the first to call out for assistance
Mem. But as a culprit.

When he was failing.
Yes, but to his country; Lor.

I believed that swoon
And that was all he sought, so he avouches. His last.

Mem. The accusation of the bribes was proved. Bar. And have I not oft heard thee name

Sen. Not clearly, and the charge of homicide His and his father's death your nearest wish ? Has been annull'd by the death-bed confession Lor. If he dies innocent, that is to say, Of Nicolas Erizzo, who slew the late

With his guilt unavow'd, he'll be lamented. Chief of “the Ten."

Bar. What, wouldst thou slay his memory? Mem. Then why not clear him? Lor.

Wouldst thou have Sen.

That His state descend to his children, as it must,
They ought to answer; for it is well known If he die unattainted?
That Almoro Donato, as I said,


War with them too? Was slain by Erizzo for private vengeance.

Lor. With all their house, till theirs or mine are Mem. There must be more in this strange process nothing. than

Bar. And the deep agony of his pale wife,
The apparent crimes of the accused disclose And the repress'd convulsion of the high
But here come two of “the Ten;" let us retire. And princely brow of his old father, which
[Exeunt Memmo and Senator. Broke forth in a slight shuddering, though rarely,

Or in some clammy drops, soon wiped away

In stern serenity; these moved you not?
Bar. (addressing Lor.) That were too much:

[Exit LOREDANO believe me, 'twas not meet

He's silent in his hate, as Foscari The trial should go further at this moment. Was in his suffering; and the poor wretch moved me Lor. And so the Council must break up, and More by his silence than a thousand outcries Justice

Could have affected. 'Twas a dreadful sight Pause in her full career, because a woman When his distracted wife broke through into Breaks in on our deliberations?

The hall of our tribunal, and beheld Bar.


What we could scarcely look upon, long used That's not the cause; you saw the prisoner's state. To such sights. I must think no more of this Lor. And had he not recover'd ?

Lest I forget in this compassion for Bar.

To relapse Our foes their former injuries, and lose Upon the least renewal.

The hold of vengeance Loredano plans Lor. 'Twas not tried.

For him and me; but mine would be content Bar. 'Tis vain to murmur; the majority With lesser retribution than he thirsts for, In council were against you.

And I would mitigate his deeper hatred Lor.

Thanks to you, sir, To milder thoughts; but for the present, Foscari And the old ducal dotard, who combined

Has a short hourly respite, granted at
The worthy voices which o'erruled my own. The instance of the elders of the Council,

Bar. I am a judge; but must confess that part Moved doubtless by his wife's appearance in
Of our stern duty, which prescribes the Question, The hall, and his own sufferings.-Lo! they come :
And bids us sit and see its sharp infliction, How feeble and forlorn! I cannot bear
Makes me wish-

To look on them again in this extremity :
What ?

I'll hence, and try to soften Loredano.
That you would sometimes feel,

[Exit BARBARIGO As I do always.

Lor. Go to, you're a child,
Infirm of feeling as of purpose, blown

About by every breath, shook by a sigh,
And melted by a tear-a precious judge

For Venice ! and a worthy statesman to
Be partner in my policy !

A Hall in the Doge's Palace.

He shed No tears.

The Dogs and a Senator. Lor. He cried out twice.

Sen. Is it your pleasure to sign the report Bar.

A saint had done so, 'Now, or postpone it till to-morrow?



The illustrious lady Foscari I overlook'd it yesterday: it wants

Requests an audience. Merely the signature. Give me the pen


Bid her enter. Poor [The Doge sits down and signs the paper. Marina !

[Exit Attendant. There, signor.

[The Doge remains in silence as before Sen. (looking at the paper.) You have forgot; it is not sign'd.

Enter MARINA. Doge. Not sign'd? Ah, I perceive my eyes begin Mar. I have ventured, father, on To wax more weak with age. I did not see

Your privacy. That I had dipp'd the pen without effect.

Doge. I have none from you, my child. Sen. (dipping the pen into the ink, and placing the Command my time, when not commanded by

paper before the Doge.) Your hand, too, The state.
shakes, my lord: allow me, thus-

Mar. I wish'd to speak to you of him.
Doge. 'Tis done, I thank you.

Doge. Your husband ?
Thus the act confirm'd Mar.

And your son.
By you and by the “ Ten,” gives peace to Venice. Doge. Proceed, my daughter !

Doge. 'Tis long since she enjoy'd it: may it be Mar. I had obtain'd permission from the “Ten" As long ere she resume her arms!

To attend my husband for a limited number Sen.

'Tis almost Of hours. Thirty-four years of nearly ceaseless warfare Doge.

You had so. With the Turk, or the powers of Italy ;


'Tis revoked. The state had need of some repose.


By whom? Doge.

No doubt: Mar. “The Ten."- When we had reach'd “ the I found her queen of ocean, and I leave her

Bridge of Sighs," Lady of Lombardy; it is a comfort

Which I prepared to pass with Foscari, That I have added to her diadem

The gloomy guardian of that passage first The gems of Breccia and Ravenna; Crema Demurr'd: a messenger was sent back to And Bergamo no less are hers; her realm

“ The Ten;" but as the court no longer sate, By land has grown by thus much in my reign, And no permission had been given in writing, While her sea-sway has not shrunk.

I was thrust back, with the assurance that Sen.

'Tis most true, Until that high tribunal had reassembled, And merits all our country's gratitude.

The dungeon walls would still divide us. Doge. Perhaps so.


True, Sen.

Which should be made manifest. The form has been omitted in the haste Doge. I have not complain'd, sir.

With which the court adjourn'd, and till it meets, Sen.

My good lord, forgive me. 'Tis dubious. Doge. For what?

Mar. Till it meets! and when it meets, My heart bleeds for you. They'll torture him again; and he and I Doge.

For me, signor: Must purchase by renewal of the rack
Sen. And for your

The interview of husband and of wife,

The holiest tie beneath the heavens ! -Oh God! Sen.

It must have way, my lord. Dost thou see this? I have too many duties towards you


Child-childAnd all your house, for past and present kindness, Mar. (abruptly.)

Call me not " child !' Not to feel deeply for your son.

You soon will have no children-you deserve none Doge.

Was this

You, who can talk thus calmly of a son
In your commission ?

In circumstances which would call forth tears
What, my lord ?

Of blood from Spartans! Though these did not weep Doge.

This prattle Their boys who died in battle, is it written
Of things you know not: but the treaty's signed ; That they beheld them perish piecemeal, nor
Return with it to them who sent you.

Stretch'd forth a hand to save them?

You behold me:
Obey. I had in charge, too, from the Council I cannot weep, I would I could; but if
That you would fix an hour for their reunion. Each white hair on this head were a young life,
Doge. Say, when they will now, even at this This ducal cap the diadem of earth,

This ducal ring with which I wed the waves If it so please them : I am the state's servant. A talisman to still them-I'd give all Sen. They would accord some time for your repose. For him. Doge. I have no repose, that is, none which shall Mar. With less he surely might be saved. cause

Doge. That answer only shows you know not The loss of an hour's time unto the state.

Venice. Let them meet when they will, I shall be found Alas! how should you ? she knows not herself, Where I should be, and what I have been ever. In all her mystery. Hear me-they who aim

[Exit Senator. At Foscari, aim no less at his father ; [The Doge remains in silence. The sire's destruction would not save the son ;

They work by different means to the same end, Enter an Attendant.

And that is -but they have not conquer'd yet. Att. Prince !

Mar. But they have crush'd.
Say on.


Nor crush'd as yet--I live.



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Mar. And your son,-how long will he live? It lies upon this heart, far lightlier, though

I trust, Loaded with marble, than the thoughts which presa For all that yet is past, as many years

it And happier than his father. The rash boy Now, you will know me better, With womanish impatience to return,


Are, you then, Hath ruin'd all by that detected letter:

Indeed, thus to be pitied ? A high crime which I neither can deny


Pitied! None Nor palliate, as parent or as Duke:

Shall ever use that base word, with which men Had he but borne a little, little longer

Cloak their soul's hoarded triumph, as a fit one His Candiote exile, I had hopes—he has quench'd To mingle with my name: that name shall be, them

As far as I have borne it, what it was
He must return.

When I received it.
To exile?


But for the poor children Doge.

I have said it. Of him thou canst not, or thou wilt not save, Mar. And can I not go with him ?

You were the last to bear it.
You well know, Doge.

Would it were so.
This prayer of yours was twice denied before Better for him he never had been born,
By the assembled “ Ten,” and hardly now

Better for me.-I have seen our house dishonor'd. Will be accorded to a third request,

Mar. That's false! a truer, nobler, trustier heart, Since aggravated errors on the part

More loving, or more loyal, never beat Of your lord renders them still more austere. Within a human breast. I would not change

Mar. Austere ? Atrocious! The old human fiends, My exiled, persecuted, mangled husband, With one foot in the grave, with dim eyes, strange Oppress'd but not disgraced, crush’d, overwhelmid, To tears save drops of dotage, with long white Alive, or dead, for prince or paladin And scanty hairs, and shaking hands, and heads In story or in fable, with a world As palsied as their hearts are hard, they council, To back his suit. Dishonor'd !-he dishonor'd! Cabal, and put men's lives out, as if life

I tell thee, Doge, 'tis Venice is dishonor'd; Were no more than the feelings long extinguish'd His name shall be her foulest, worst reproach, In their accursed bosoms.

For what he suffers, not for what he did.
You know not-

l'Tis ye who are all traitors, tyrant !-ye! Mar. I do—I do—and so should you, methinks Did you but love your country like this victim That these are demons: could it be else that Who totters back in chains to tortures, and Men, who have been of women born and suckled Submits to all things rather than to exile, Who have loved, or talk'd at least of love-have You'd fling yourselves before him, and implore given

His grace for your enormous guilt.
Their hands in sacred vows-have danced their babes Doge.

He was
Upon their knees, perhaps have mourn'd above them Indeed all you have said. I better bore
In pain, in peril, or in death--who are,

The deaths of the two sons Heaven took from me
Or were at least in seeming human, could Than Jacopo's disgrace.
Do as they have done by yours, and you yourself, Mar.

That word again?
You, who abet them?

Doge. Has he not been condemn'd?
I forgive this, for


Is none but guilt so? You know not what you say.

Doge. Time may restore his memory-I would Mar. You know it well,

hope so. And feel it nothing.

He was my pride, my-but 'tis useless nowDoge. I have borne so much,

I am not given to tears, but wept for joy That words have ceased to shake me.

When he was born: those drops were ominous. Mar.

Oh, no doubt

Mar. I say he's innocent! And were he not so, You have seen your son's blood flow, and your flesh Is our own blood and kin to shrink from us shook not;

In fatal moments ? And after that what are a woman's words?


I shrank not from him : No more than woman's tears, that they should shake But I have other duties than a father's; you.

The state would not dispense me from those duties i Doge. Woman, this clamorous grief of thine, I tell Twice I demanded it, but was refused : thee,

They must then be fulfill'd.
Is no more in the balance weigh'd with that
Which—but I pity thee, my poor Marina !

Enter an Attendant.
Mar. Pity my husband, or I cast it from me; Att.

A message from Pity thy son! Thou pity !-'tis a word

“ The Ten." Strange to thy heart-how came it on thy lips ? Doge. Who bears it? Doge. I must bear these reproaches, though they Att.

Noble Loredano. wrong me.

Doge. He !-but admit him. [Exit Attendant Coulst thou but read


Must I then retire Mar.

"Tis not upon thy brow, Doge. Perhaps it is not requisite, if this Nor in thine eyes, nor in thine acts,—where then Concerns your husband, and if not-Well, signor, Should I behold this sympathy! or shall ? Your pleasure !

To LOREDANO entering. Doge, (pointing downwards.) There !


I bear that of "the Ten "
In the earth? Doge.

They Dage.

To which I am tending : when 'Have chosen well their envoy.

"Tis their choice Doge.

But I, good signor,
Which leads me here.

Am, or at least was, more than a mere duke, Doge.

It does their wisdom honor, In blood, in mind, in means; and that they know And no less to their courtesy.--Proceed.

Who dreaded to elect me, and have since Lor. We have decided.

Striven all they dare to weigh me down: be sure, Doge. We?

Before or since that period, had I held you Lor.

“The Ten” in council. At so much price as to require your absence, Doge. What! have they met again, and met A word of mine had set such spirits to work without

As would nave made you nothing. But in all things, Apprising me?

I have observed the strictest reverence; Lor. They wish'd to spare your feelings, Not for the laws alone, for those you have strain'd No less than age.

(I do not speak of you but as a single Doge. That's new-when spared they either ? Voice of the many) somewhat beyond what I thank them, notwithstanding.

I could enforce for my authority,

You know well Were I disposed to brawl; but, as I said,
That they have power to act at their discretion, I have observed with veneration, like
With or without the presence of the Doge. A priest's for the high altar, even unto
Doge. 'Tis some years since I learn'd this, long The sacrifice of my own blood and quiet,

Safety, and all save honor, the decrees,
I became Doge, or dream'd of such advancement. The health, the pride, and welfare of the state.
You need not school me, signor: I sate in And now, sir, to your business.
That council when you were a young patrician. Lor.

'Tis decreed, Lor. True, in my father's time; I have heard That, without further repetition of him and

The Question, or continuance of the trial, The admiral, his brother, say as much.

Which only tends to show how stubborn guilt is, Your highness may remember them; they both (“The Ten," dispensing with the stricter law Died suddenly.

Which still prescribes the Question till a full Doge.

And if they did so, better Confession, and the prisoner partly having So die than live on lingeringly in pain.

Avow'd his crime in not denying that Lor. No doubt; yet most men like to live their The letter to the Duke of Milan's his,) days out.

James Foscari return to banishment, Doge. And did not they?

And sail in the same galley which convey'd him. Lor.

The grave knows best: they died, Mar. Thank God! At least they will not dsag As I said, suddenly.

him more Is that so strange,

Before that horrible tribunal. Would he That you repeat the word emphatically?

But think so, to my mind the happiest doom, Lor. So far from strange, that never was there Not he alone, but all who dwell here, could death

Desire, were to escape from such a land. my mind half so natural as theirs.

Doge. That is not a Venetian thought, my Think you not so ?

daughter. Doge.

What should I think of mortals ? Mar. No, 'twas too human. May I share his Lor. That they have mortal foes.

exile ? Doge.

I understand you;

Lor. Of this "the Ten " said nothing. Your sires were mine, and you are heir in all things.


So I thought: Lor. You best know if I should be so.

That were too human, also. But it was not Doge.

I do. Inhibited ? Your fathers were my foes, and I have heard

Lor. It was not named. Poul rumors were abroad; I have also read

Mar. (to the Doge.)

Then, father, Their epitaph, attributing their deaths

Surely you can obtain or grant me thus much: To poison. 'Tis perhaps as true as most

[To LOREDANO Inscriptions upon torbs, and yet no less

And you, sir, not oppose my prayer to be A fable.

Permitted to accompany my husband.
Lor. Who dares say so?

Doge. I will endeavor.
I! 'Tis true

And you, signor?
Your fathers were mine enemies, as bitter


Lady! As their son e'er can be, and I no less

"Tis not for me to anticipate the pleasure Was theirs; but I was openly their foe:

of the tribunal. I never work'd by plot in council, nor


Pleasure ! what a word Cabal in commonwealth, nor secret means To use for the decrees ofof practice against life by steel or drug.


Daughter, know you The proof is, your existence.

In what a presence you pronounce these things ? I fear not.

Mar. A prince's and his subject's.
Doge. You have no cause, being what I am; but Lor.

Were I

That you would have me thought, you long ere now It galls you :-well, you are his equal, as
Were past the sense of fear. Hate on ; I care not. You think; but that you are not, nor would be,

Lor. I never yet knew that a noble's life Were he a peasant:-well, then, you're a prince, In Venice had to dread a Doge's frown,

A princely noble; and what then am I? That is, by open means.

Lor. The offspring of a noble house.




And wedded And false, and hollow-clay from first to last, To one as noble. What or whose, then is The prince's urn no less than potter's vessel. The presence that should silence my free thoughts : Our fame is in men's breath, our lives upon

Lor. The presence of your husband's judges. Less than their breath ; our durance upon days, Doge.

And Our days on seasons; our whole being on The deference due even to the lightest word Something which is not us !-So, we are slaves, That falls from those who rule in Venice.

The greatest as the meanest-nothing rests Mar.

Keep Upon our will; the will itself no less Those maxims for your mass of scared mechanics, Depends upon a straw than on a storm; Your merchants, your Dalmatian and Greek slaves, And when we think we lead, we are most led, Your tributaries, your dumb citizens,

And still towards death, a thing which comes u And mask'd nobility, your sbirri, and

much Your spies, your galley and your other slaves, Without our act or choice as birth, so that To whom your midnight carryings off and drownings, Methinks we must have sinn'd in some old world, Your dungeons next the palace roofs, or under And this is hell : the best is, that it is not The water's level; your mysterious meetings, Eternal. And unknown dooms, and sudden executions, Mar. These are things we cannot judge Your “Bridge of Sighs,” your strangling chamber, On earth. and

Doge. And how then shall we judge each other, Your torturing instruments, have made ye seem Who are all earth, and I, who am call'd upon The beings of another and worse world!

To judge my son? I have administer'd Keep such for them: I fear ye not. I know ye; My country faithfully-victoriouslyHave known and proved your worst, in the infernal I dare them to the proof, the chart of what I'rocess of my poor husband! Treat me as She was and is: my reign has doubled realms ; Ye treated him :-you did so, in so dealing And, in reward, the gratitude of Venice With him. Then what have I to fear from you, Has left, or is about to leave, me single. Even if I were of fearful nature, which

Mar. And Foscari? I do not think of such things, I trust I am not?

So I be left with him.
You hear, she speaks wildly. Doge.

You shall be so:
Mar. Not wisely, yet not wildly.

Thus much they cannot well deny.
Lady! words Mar.

And if
Utter'd within these walls I bear no further They should, I will fly with him.
Than to the threshold, saving such as pass


That can ne'er be. Between the Duke and me on the state's service. And whither would you fly? Doge! have you aught in answer?


I know not, reck not-Doge.

Something from To Syria, Egypt, to the OttomanThe Doge; it may be also from a parent.

Any where, where we might respire unfetter'd, Lor. My mission here is to the Doge.

And live nor girt by spies, nor liable Doge.

To edicts of inquisitors of state. The Doge will choose his own ambassador,

Doge. What, wouldst thou have a renegade for Or state in person what is meet; and for

husband, The father

And turn him into traitor ?
I remember mine.-Farewell! Mar.

He is none!
I kiss the hands of the illustrious lady,

The country is the traitress, which thrusts forth And bow me to the Duke. (Exit LOREDANO. Her best and bravest from her. Tyranny Mar.

Are you content? Is far the worst of treasons. Dost thou deer Doge. I am what you behold.

None rebels except subjects? The prince who Mar.

And that's a mystery. Neglects or violates his trust is more Doge. All things are so to mortals; who can A brigand than the robber-chief. read them


I cannot Save he who made; or, if they can, the few Charge me with such a breach of faith. And gifted spirits, who have studied long

Mar. That loathsome volume-man, and pored upon Observ'st, obey'st, such laws as make old Draco's Those black and bloody leaves, his heart and brain, A code of mercy by comparison. But learn a magic which recoils upon

Doge. I found the law; I did not make it. Were I The adept who pursues it: all the sins

A subject, still I might find parts and portions We find in others, nature made our own;

Fit for amendment; but as prince, I never All our advantages are those of fortune;

Would change, for the sake of my house, the charter
Birth, wealth, health, beauty, are her accidents, Left by our fathers.
And when we cry out against Fate, 'twere well Mar.

Did they make it for
We should remember Fortune can take nought The ruin of their children?
Save what she gave—the rest was nakedness, Doge.

Under such laws, Venice And lusts, and appetites, and vanities,

Has risen to what she is a state to rival The universal heritage, to battle

In deeds, and days, and sway, and, let me add, With as we may, and least in humblest stations, In glory, (for we have had Roman spirits Where hunger swallows all in one low want, Among us,) all that history has bequeathed And the original ordinance, that man

Of Rome and Carthage in their best times, when Must sweat for his poor pittance, keeps all passions The people sway'd by senates. Aloof, save fear of famine! All is low,


Rather say,

Then say

No; thou

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