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Enter Lucius with his Sword drawin.
Oh Reverend Tribunes! gentle aged Men!
Unbind my Sons, reverse the doom of Deathi,
And let me say (that never wept before)
My Tears are now prevailing Orators.
Luc. Oh, Noble Farher, you lament in vain,
The Tribunes hear you not, no Man, is by,
And you recount your Sorrows to a Stone.
Tit. Ab Lucius, for thy Brothers let me plead
Grave Tribunes, once more I intreat of
you Luc. My gracious Lord, 'no Tribune hears you speak.
Tit. Why, 'tis no matter, Man; if they did hear,
They would not mark me: Or if they did hear,
They would not pity me.
Therefore I tell my Sorrows bootlefs to the Stones,
Who, tho’they cannot answer my Distress,
Yet in some sort they are better than the Tribunes,
For that they will not intercept my Tale;
When I do weep, they humbly at my Feet
Receive my Tears, and seem to weep with me;
And were they but attired in grave Weeds,
Rome could afford no Tribune like to these.
A Stone is as soft Wax,
Tribunes more hard than Stones:
A Stone is filent, and offendeth not,
And Tribunes with their Tongues doom Men to death,
But wherefore fandest thou with thy Weapon drawn?
Luc. To rescue my two Brothers from their Death,
For which attempt, the Judges have pronounc'd
My everlasting doom of Banishment.
Tit. O happy Man, they have befriended thee:
Why, foolish Lucius, doft thou not perceive,
That Rome is but a Wilderness of Tygers
Tygers must prey, and Rome affords no prey
But me and mine; how happy art thou then,
From these Devourers to be banished?
But who comes with our Brother Marcus here?
Mar. Titus, prepare thy Noble Eyes' to weep,
Or if not so, thy Noble Heart to break :
I bring consuming Sorrow to thine Age.
Tit. Will it consume me? Let me see it then,
Mar. This was thy Daughter.
Tit. Why, Marcus, fo she is.,
Luc. Al me, this Obje& kills me.
Tit. Faint-hearted Boy, arise and look upan
Speak my Lavinia, what accursed Hand
Hath made thee handlefs in thy Father's sight?
What Fool hath added Water to the Sea?
Or brought a Faggot to bright-burning Troy?
My Grief was at the heighth before thou cam'ft,
And now like Nilus it disdaineth bounds :
Give me a Sword, I'll chop off my Hands too,
For they have fought for Rome, and all in vain:
And they have nursid this woe, in feeding Life:',
In bootless Prayer have they been held up,
And they have serv'd me to effe clefs use.
Now all the Service I require of them,
Is, that the one will help to cut the other:
'Tis well, Lavinia, that chbu haft no Hands,
For Hands to do Rome Service are but vain.
Luc. Speak, gentle Sister, who hath martyr'd thee?
Mar. O that delightful Engine of her Thoughts,
That blab'd them with such pleafing Eloquence,
Is torn from forth that pretty hollow Cage,
Where like a sweet melodious Bird it fung,
Sweet various Notes inchanting every Ear.
Luc. Oh say thou for her,
Who hath done this Deed?
Mar. O thus I found her ftraving in the Park,
Seeking to hide her self, as doth the Deer
That hath received some unrecuring Wound.
Tit. It was my Deer,
And he that wounded her
Hath hurt me more than had he kill'd me dead:
For now I stand, as one upon a Rock,
Environ'd with a Wildernefs of Sea,
Who marks the waxing Tide grow Wave by Wave,
Expe&ing ever when some envious Surge
Will in his brinith Bowels fwallow him. I
This way to death my wretched Sons are gone:
Here stands my other Son, a banish'd Man,
And here my Brother weeping at my Woes.
But that which gives my Soul the greatest spurn,
Is dear Lavinia, dearer than my Soul
Had I but seen thy Pi&ure in this plight,
It would have madded me. What shall I do, ,
Now I behold thy lively Body so ?
Thou hast no Hands to wipe away thy Tears,
Nor Tongue to tell me who hath martyrd thee;
Thy Husband he is dead, and for his Death
Thy Brothers are condemn'd, and dead by this.
Look Marcus, ah Son Lucius look on her:
When I did name her Brothers, then fresh Tears
Stood on her Cheeks, ás doth the Honey dew,
Upon a gather'd Lilly almost wither'd.
Mar. Perchance the weeps because they kill'd her Husband. Perchance because she knows him Innocent.
Tit. If they did kill thy Husband, then be joyful,
Because the Law hath ta'en revenge on them.
No, no, they would not do fo foul a Deed,
Witness the Sorrow that their Sister makes.
Gentle Lavinia, let me kiss thy Lips,
Or make some figns how I may do thee ease:
Shall thy good Uncle, and thy Brother Lucius,
And thou and I fit round about some Fountain,
Looking all downwards to behold our Cheeks,
How they are stain'd like Meadows yet not dry
With miery slime left on them by a Flood:
And in the Fountain shall we gaze so long,
'Till the fresh taste be taken from that clearness,
And made a Brine-pit with our bitter Tearss: 1
Or shall we cut away our Hands like thines 11
Or shall we bite our Tongues, and in dumb Shows -
Pass the remainder of our hateful Days?
What shall we do? Let us that have our Tongues,
Plot some devise of further miseries
To make us wondred at in time to come.
Luc. Sweet Father, cease your Tears, for at your Grief See how my wretched Sifter fobs and weeps.
Mar. Patience, dear Neice, good Titus dry thine Eyes.
Tit. Ah Marcus, Marcus, Brother, well I wot,
Thy Napkin cannot drink a tear of mine,
For thou, poor Man, hast drown'd it with thine own.
Luc. Ah, my Lavinia, I will wipe thy Cheeks.
Tit. Mark, Marcus, mark, I understand her Signs,
Had lhe a Tongue to speak, now would she say
That to her Brother which I said to thee.
His Napkin with his true tears all bewet,
Can do no service on her sorrowful Cheeks.
Oh what a sympathy of Woe is this!
As far from help as Limbo is from Bliss.
Enter Aaron alone,
Aar. Titus Andronicus, my Lord the Emperor
Sends thee this Word, that if thou love thy Sons,
Let Marcus, Lucius, or thy self, old Titus,
Or any one of you chop off your Hand,
And send it to the King; he for the same
Will send thee hither both thy Sons alive,
And that shall be the Rapsom for their Fault.
Tit. Oh gracious Emperor! oh gentle Aaron!
Did ever Raven sing fo like a Lark,
That gives sweet Tydings of the Sun's uprise?
With all my Heart, I'll send the Emperor my Hand,
Good Aaron wilt thou help to chop it off?
Luc. Stay, Father, for that noble Hand of thine,
That hath thrown down so many Enemies,
Shall not be sent ; my Hand will serve the turn.
My Youth can befcer spare my Blood than you,
And therefore mine shall save my Brothers lives.
Mar. Which of your Hands hath not defended Rome,
And rear'd aloft the bloody Battel.ax,
Writing Deftru&ion on the Enemies Castle?
Oh none of both but are of high desert:
My Hand hath been but idle, let it serve
To ransome my two Nephews from their Death,
Then have I kept it to a worthy end.
Aar. Nay, come agree, whose Hand shall go along, For fear they die before their pardon come.
Mar. My Hand shall go.
Luc. By Heav'n ir fhall not go.
Tit. Sirs, ftrive no more, such wither'd Herbs as these Are meet for plucking up, and therefore mine.
Luc. Sweet Father, if I fhall be thought thy Sun, Let me redeem my Brothers both from Deathe
Mari And for our Father's fake, and Mo het's 'cure,
Now let me lhew á Brother's love to thee.
Tit. Agree between you, I will spare my Hand.
Luc. Then I'll go fetch an Ax.
Mar. But I will use the Ax.
Tit. Come hither, Aaron, I'll deceive them both;
Lend me thy Hand, and I will give thee mine.
Aar. If that be call'd deceit, I will be honest,
And never whilft I live deceive Men fo,
But I'll deceive you in another fort,
And that you'll say e'er half an hour pafsi. ! [Afidt.
[He cars off Titas's
Enter Lucius and Marcus again.
Tit. Now ftay your Strife; what shall be,' is dispatche:
Good Aaron, give his Majesty my Hand:
Tell him, it was 4 Hand that warded him
From thousand Dangers, bid him bury it
More hach it merited: That let it have.
As for my Sons, say, I account of them,
As Jewels purchas'd at an easie Price,
And yet dear too, because I bought mine own.
Aar. I go, Andronichs, and for thy Hand
Look by and by to have thy Sons with thee:
Their Heads I mean..Oh, how this Villany (Afde.
Doth fat me with the very thought of it.
Let Fools do good, and fair Men call for Grace,
Aaron will have his Soul black like his Face. [Exit.
Tit. O hear! I life this one Hand up to Heay'n,
And bow this feeble ruin to the Earth,
If any Power pities wretched Tears,
To that I call: What wilt thou kneel with me?
Do then, dear Heart, før Heav'n fhall hear our Prayers,
Or with our Gghs we'll breath the Welkin dim
And stain the Sun with Fog, as sometime Clouds,
When they do hug him in their melting Bofoms.
Mar. Oh, Brother, speak with Pollibilities,