An Arthurian Miscellany at sacred-texts.com
THE TRAGEDY OF TRAGEDIES
H. Scriblerus Secundus;
The Town hath seldom been more divided in its Opinion, than concerning the Merit of the following Scenes. Whilst some publickly affirmed, That no Author could produce so fine a Piece but Mr. P ------, others have with as much Vehemence insistsed, That no one could write any thing so bad, but Mr. F ------.
Nor can we wonder at this Dissention about its Merit, when the learned World have not unanimously decided even the very Nature of this Tragedy. For tho' most of the Universities in Europe have honoured it with the Name of Egregium & maximi pretii opus, Tragaediis tam antiquis quam novis longe anteponendum; nay, Dr. B ------ hath pronounced, Citiùs Maevii AEneadem quam Scribleri istius Tragaediam hanc crediderim, cujus Autorem Senecam ipsum tradidisse haud dubitârim ; and the great Professor Burman , hath stiled Tom Thumb, Heroum omnium Tragicorum facilè Principem . Nay, tho' it hath, among other Languages, been translated into Dutch , and celebrated with great Applause at Amsterdam (where Burlesque never came) by the Title of Mynheer Vander Thumb , the Burgomasters receiving it with that reverent and silent Attention, which becometh an Audience at a deep Tragedy: Notwithstanding all this, there have not been wanting some who have represented these Scenes in a ludicrous Light; and Mr. D ------ hath been heard to say, with some Concern, That he wondered a Tragical and Christian Nation would permit a Representation on its Theatre, so visibly designed to ridicule and extirpate every thing that is Great and Solemn among us.
This learned Critick, and his Followers, were led into so great an Error, by that surreptitious and piratical Copy which stole last Year into the World; with what Injustice and Prejudice to our Author, I hope will be acknowledged by every one who shall happily peruse this genuine and original Copy. Nor can I help remarking, to the great Praise of our Author, that, however imperfect the former was, still did even that faint Resemblance of the true Tom Thumb , contain sufficient Beauties to give it a Run of upwards of Forty Nights, to the politest Audiences. But, nothwithstanding that Applause which it receiv'd from all the best Judges, it was as severely censured by some few bad ones, and I believe, rather maliciously than ignorantly, reported to have been intended a Burlesque on the loftiest Parts of Tragedy, and designed to banish what we generally call Fine Things, from the Stage.
Now, if I can set my Country right in an Affair of this Importance, I shall lightly esteem any Labour which it may cost. And this I the rather undertake, First, as it is indeed in some measure incumbent on me to vindicate myself from that surreptitious Copy before-mentioned, published by some ill-meaning People, under my Name: Secondly, as knowing my self more capable of doing Justice to our Author, than any other Man, as I have given my self more Pains to arrive at a thorough Understanding of this little Piece, having for ten Years together read nothing else; in which time, I think I may modestly presume, with the help of my English Dictionary, to comprehend all the Meanings of every Word in it.
But should any Error of my Pen awaken Clariss. Bentleium to enlighten the World with his Annotations on our Author, I shall not think that the least Reward or Happiness arising to me from these my Endeavours.
I shall wave at present, what hath caused such Feuds in the learned World, Whether this Piece was originally written by Shakespear , tho' certainly That, were it true, must add a considerable Share to its Merit; especially, with such who are so generous as to buy and to commend what they never read, from an implicit Faith in the Author only: A Faith! which our Age abounds in as much, as it can be called deficient in any other.
Let it suffice, that the Tragedy of Tragedies , or, The Life and Death of Tom Thumb , was written in the Reign of Queen Elizabeth . Nor can the Objection made by Mr. D ------, That the Tragedy must then have been antecedent to the History, have any Weight, when we consider, That tho' the History of Tom Thumb , printed by and for Edward M------r , at the Looking-Glass on London-Bridge , be of a later Date; still must we suppose this History to have been transcribed from some other, unless we suppose the Writer thereof to be inspired: A Gift very faintly contended for by the Writers of our Age. As to this History's not bearing the Stamp of Second, Third, or Fourth Edition, I see but little in that Objection; Editions being very uncertain Lights to judge of Books by: And perhaps Mr. M------r may have joined twenty Editions in one, as Mr. C------l hath ere now divided one into twenty.
Nor doth the other Argument, drawn from the little Care our Author hath taken to keep up to the letter of the History, carry any greater Force. Are there not Instances of Plays, wherein the History is so perverted, that we can know the Heroes whom they celebrate by no other Marks than their Names? Nay, do we not find the same Character placed by different Poets in such different Lights, that we can discover not the least Sameness, or even Likeness in the Features? The Sophonisba of Mairet , and of Lee , is a tender, passionate, amorous Mistress of Massinissa; Corneille , and Mr. Thomson give her no other Passion but the Love of her Country, and make her as cool in her Affection to Massinissa , as to Syphax . In the two latter, she resembles the Character of Queen Elizabeth ; in the two former she is the Picture of Mary Queen of Scotland . In short, the one Sophonisba is as different from the other, as the Brutus of Voltaire , is from the Marius Jun. of Otway ; or as the Minerva is from the Venus of the Ancients.
Let us now proceed to a regular Examinatoin of the Tragedy before us, in which I shall treat separately of the Fable, the Moral, the Characters, the Sentiments, and the Diction. And first of the
Fable ; which I take to be the most simple imaginable; and, to use the Words of an eminent Author, 'One, regular, and uniform, not 'charged with a Multiplicity of Incidents, and yet affording several 'Revolutions of Fortune; by which the Passions may be excited, 'varied, and driven to their full Tumult of Emotion.' -- Nor is the Action of this Tragedy less great than uniform. The Spring of all, is the Love of Tom Thumb for Huncamunca ; which causeth the Quarrel between their Majesties in the first Act; the Passion of Lord Grizzle in the Second; the Rebellion, Fall of Lord Grizzle , and Glumdalca , Devouring of Tom Thumb by the Cow, and that bloody Catastrophe, in the Third.
Nor is the Moral of this excellent Tragedy less noble than the Fable ; it teaches these two instructive Lessons, viz . That Human Happiness is exceeding transient, and, That Death is the certain End of all Men; the former whereof is inculcated by the fatal End of Tom Thumb ; the latter, by that of all the other Personages.
The Characters are, I think, sufficeintly described in the Dramatis Personae ; and I believe we shall find few Plays, where greater care is taken to maintain them throughout, and to preserve in every Speech that Characteristical Mark which distinguishes them from each other. 'But (says Mr. D ------) how well doth the Character of ' Tom Thumb , whom we must call the Hero of this Tragedy, if it hath 'any Hero, agree with the Precepts of Aristotle , who defineth Tragedy 'to be the Imitation of a short, but perfect Action, containing a just 'Greatness in itself , &c. What Greatness can be in a Fellow, whom History 'relateth to have been no higher than a Span?' This Gentleman seemeth to think, with Serjeant Kite , that the Greatness of a Man's Soul is in proportion to that of his Body, the contrary of which is affirmed by our English Physognominical Writers. Besides, if I understand Aristotle right, he speaketh only of the Greatness of the Action, and not of the Person.
As for the Sentiments and the Diction , which now only remain to be spoken to; I thought I could afford them no stronger Justification, than by producing parallel Passages out of the best of our English Writers. Whether this Sameness of Thought and Expression which I have quoted from them, proceeded from an Agreement in their Way of Thinking; or whether they have borrowed from our Author, I leave the Reader to determine. I shall adventure to affirm this of the Sentiments of our Author; That they are generally the most familiar which I have ever met with, and at the same time delivered with the highest Dignity of Phrase; which brings me to speak of his Diction . -- Here I shall only beg one Postulatum, viz . That the greatest Perfection of the Language of a Tragedy is, that it is not to be understood; which granted (as I think it must be) it will necessarily follow, that the only ways to avoid this, is by being too high or too low for the Understanding, which will comprehend every thing within its Reach. Those two extremities of Stile Mr. Dryden illustrates by the familiar Image of two Inns, which I shall term the Aerial and the Subterrestrial.
Horace goeth farther, and sheweth when it is proper to call at one of these Inns, and when at the other;
Telephus & Peleus, cùm pauper & exul uterque,
Projicit Ampullas & Sesquipedalia Verba .
That he approveth of the Sesquipedalia Verba , is plain; for had not Telephus & Peleus used this sort of Diction in Prosperity, they could not have dropt it in Adversity. The Aerial Inn, therefore (says Horace ) is proper only to be frequented by Princes and other great Men, in the highest Affluence of Fortune; the Subterrestrial is appointed for the Entertainment of the poorer sort of People only, whom Horace advises,
---- dolere Sermone pedestri .
The true Meaning of both which Citations is, That Bombast is the proper Language for Joy, and Doggrel for Grief, the latter of which is literally imply'd in the Sermo pedestris , as the former is in the Sesquipedalia Verba .
Cicero recommendeth the former of these. Quid est tam furiosum vel tragicum quàm verborum sonitus inanis, nullâ subjectâ Sententiâ neque Scientiâ . What can be so proper for Tragedy as a Set of big sounding Words, so contrived together, as to convey no Meaning; which I shall one Day or other prove to be the Sublime of Longinus. Ovid declareth absolutely for the latter Inn:
Omne genus scripti Gravitate Tragaedia vincit .
Tragedy hath of all Writings the greatest Share in the Bathos , which is the Profound of Scriblerus .
I shall not presume to determine which of these two Stiles be properer for Tragedy. -- It sufficeth, that our Author excelleth in both. He is very rarely within sight through the whole Play, either rising higher than the Eye of your Understanding can soar, or sinking lower than it careth to stoop. But here it may perhaps be observed, that I have given more frequent Instances of Authors who have imitated him in the Sublime, than in the contrary. To which I answer, First, Bombast being properly a Redundancy of Genius, Instances of Nature occur in Poets whose Names do more Honour to our Author, than the Writers in the Doggerel, which proceeds from a cool, calm, weighty Way of Thinking. Instances whereof are most frequently to be found in Authors of a lower Class. Secondly, That the Works of such Authors are difficultly found at all. Thirdly, That it is a very hard Task to read them, in order to extrat these Flowers from them. And Lastly, It is very often difficult to transplant them at all; they being like some Flowers of a very nice Nature, which will flourish in no Soil but their own: For it is easy to transcribe a Thought, but not the Want of one. The Earl of Essex , for Instance, is a little Garden of choice Rarities, whence you can scarce transplant one Line so as to perserve its original Beauty. This must account to the Reader for his missing the Names of several of his Acquaintance, which he had certainly found here, had I ever read their Works; for which, if I have not a just Esteem, I can at least say with Cicero, Quae non contemno, quippè quae nunquam legerim . However, that the Reader may meet with due Satisfaction in this Point, I have a young Commentator from the University, who is reading over all the modern Tragedies, at Five Shillings a Dozen, and collecting all that they have stole from our Author, which shall shortly be added as an Appendix to this Work.
| KING Arthur , A passionate sort of King, Husband to Queen Dollallolla , of whom he stands a little in Fear; Father to Huncamunca , whom he is very fond of; and in Love with Glumdalca . || |
Mr. Mullart .
TOM THUMB the Great , A little Hero with a great Soul, something violent in his Temper, which is a little abated by his Love for Huncamunca .
Young Verhuyck .
GHOST of Gaffar Thumb , A whimsical sort of GHOST.
Mr. Lacy .
Lord GRIZZLE, Extremely zealous for the Liberty of the Subject, very cholerick in his Temper, and in Love with Huncamunca .
Mr. Jones .
MERLIN, A Conjurer, and in some sort Father to Tom Thumb .
Mr. Hallam .
NOODLE, Courtiers in Place, and consequently of that Party that is uppermost.
DOODLE, Courtiers in Place, and consequently of that Party that is uppermost.
Mr. Reynolds .
Mr. Wathan .
FOODLE, A Courtier that is out of Place, and consequently of that Party that is undermost.
Mr. Ayres .
FOLLOWER, Of the Party of the Plaintiff.
Mr. Peterson .
Mr. Hicks .
PARSON, Of the Side of the Church.
Mr. Watson .
| QUEEN Dollallolla , Wife to King Arthur , and Mother to Huncamunca , a Woman entirely faultless, saving that she is a little given to Drink; a little too much a Virago towards her Husband, and in Love with Tom Thumb . || |
Mrs. Mullart .
The Princess HUNCAMUNCA, Daughter to their Majesties King Arthur and Queen Dollallolla , of a very sweet, gentle, and amorous Disposition, equally in Love with Lord Grizzle and Tom Thumb , and desirous to be married to them both.
Mrs. Jones .
GLUMDALCA, of the Giants, a Captive Queen, belov'd by the King, but in Love with Tom Thumb .
Mrs. Dove .
CLEORA, Maid of Honour, in Love with Noodle .
MUSTACHA, Maid of Honour, in Love with Doodle .
Courtiers, Guards, Rebels, Drums, Trumpets, Thunder and Lightning .
SCENE the Court of King Arthur, and a Plain thereabouts .
SCENE, The Palace .
DOODLE. Sure, such a 1 Day as this was never seen!
The Sun himself, on this auspicious Day,
Shines, like a Beau in a new Birth-Day Suit:
This down the Seams embroider'd, that the Beams.
All Nature wears one universal Grin.
NOODLE. This Day, O Mr. Doodle , is a Day
Indeed, 2 a Day we never saw before.
The mighty 3 Thomas Thumb victorious comes;
Millions of Giants crowd his Chariot Wheels,
4 Giants! to whom the Giants in Guild-hall
Are Infant Dwarfs. They frown, and foam, and roar,
While Thumb regardless of their Noise rides on.
So some Cock-Sparrow in a Farmer's Yard,
Hops at the Head of an huge Flock of Turkeys.
DOODLE. When Goody Thumb first brought this Thomas forth,
The Genius of our Land triumphant reign'd;
Then, then, Oh Arthur ! did thy Genius reign.
NOODLE. They tell me it is 5 whisper'd in the Books
Of all our Sages, that this mighty Hero
By Merlin's Art begot, hath not a Bone
Within his Skin, but is a Lump of Gristle.
DOODLE. Then 'tis a Gristle of no mortal kind,
Some God, my Noodle , stept into the Place
Of Gaffer Thumb , and more than 6 half begot,
This mightly Tom .
NOODLE. --7 Sure he was sent Express
From Heav'n, to be the Pillar of our State.
Tho' small his Body be, so very small,
A Chairman's Leg is more than twice as large;
Yet is his Soul like any Mountain big,
And as a Mountain once brought forth a Mouse,
8 So doth this Mouse contain a mighty Mountain.
DOODLE. Mountain indeed! So terrible his Name,
9 The Giant Nurses frighten Children with it;
And cry Tom Thumb is come, and if you are
Naughty, will surely take the Child away.
NOODLE. But hark! 10 these Trumpets speak the King's Approach.
DOODLE. He comes most luckily for my Petition.
KING, QUEEN, GRIZZLE, NOODLE, DOODLE, FOODLE.
KING. 11 Let nothing but a Face of Joy appear;
The man who frowns this Day shall lose his Head,
That he may have no Face to frown withal.
Smile, Dollalolla, -- Ha! what wrinkled Sorrow,
12 Hangs, sits, lies, frowns upon thy knitted Brow?
Whence flow those Tears fast down thy blubber'd Cheeks,
Like a swoln Gutter, gushing through the Streets?
QUEEN. 13 Excess of Joy, my Lord, I've heard Folks say,
Gives Tears as certain as Excess of Grief.
KING. If it be so, let all Men cry for Joy,
14 'Till my whole Court be drowned with their Tears;
Nay, till they overflow my utmost Land,
And leave me Nothing but the Sea to rule.
DOODLE. My Liege, I a Petition have here got.
KING. Petition me no Petitions, Sir, to-day;
Let other Hours be set apart for Business.
To-day it is our pleasure to be 15 drunk,
And this our Queen shall be as drunk as We.
QUEEN. (Tho' I already 16 half Seas over am)
If the capacious Goblet overflow
With Arrack-Punch -- 'fore George ! I'll see it out;
Of Rum , and Brandy , I'll not taste a Drop.
KING. Tho' Rack , in Punch , Eight Shillings be a Quart,
And Rum and Brandy be no more than Six,
Rather than quarrel, you shall have your Will.
But, ha! the Warrior comes; the Great Tom Thumb ;
The little Hero, Giant-killing Boy,
Preserver of my Kingdom, is arrived.
TOM THUMB, to them with Officers, Prisoners, and Attendants .
KING. 17 Oh! welcome most, most welcome to my Arms,
What Gratitude can thank away the Debt,
Your Valour lays upon me?
QUEEN. [Aside.] -- 18 Oh! ye Gods!
TOM THUMB. When I'm not thank'd at all, I'm thank'd enough,
19 I've done my Duty, and I've done no more.
QUEEN. [Aside] Was ever such a Godlike Creature seen!
KING. Thy Modesty's a 20 Candle to thy Merit,
It shines itself, and shews thy Merit too.
But say, my Boy, where did'st thou leave the Giants?
TOM THUMB. My Liege, without the Castle Gates they stand,
The Castle Gates too low for their Admittance.
KING. What look they like?
TOM THUMB. Like Nothing but Themselves.
QUEEN. 21 And sure thou art like nothing but thy Self.
KING. [Aside.] Enough! the vast Idea fills my Soul.
I see them, yes, I see them now before me:
The monst'rous, ugly, barb'rous Sons of Whores.
But, Ha! what Form Majestick strikes our Eyes?
22 So perfect, that it seems to have been drawn
By all the Gods in Council: So fair she is,
That surely at her Birth the Council paus'd,
And then at length cry'd out, This is a Woman!
TOM THUMB. Then were the Gods mistaken. -- She is not
A Woman, but a Giantess -- whom we
23 With much ado, have made a shift to hawl
Within the Town: 24 for she is by a Foot,
Shorter than all her Subject Giants were.
GLUMDALCA. We yesterday were both a Queen and Wife,
One hundred thousand Giants own'd our Sway,
Twenty whereof were married to our self.
QUEEN. Oh! happy State of Giantism -- where Husbands
Like Mushrooms grow, whilst hapless we are forc'd
To be content, nay, happy thought with one.
GLUMDALCA. But then to lose them all in one black Day,
That the same Sun, which rising, saw me wife
To Twenty Giants, setting, should behold
Me widow'd of them all. -- 25 My worn out Heart,
That Ship, leaks fast, and the great heavy Lading,
My Soul, will quickly sink.
QUEEN. -- Madam, believe,
I view your Sorrows with a Woman's Eye;
But learn to bear them with what Strength you may,
To-morrow we will have our Grenadiers
Drawn out before you, and you then shall choose
What Husbands you think fit.
GLUMDALCA. -- 26 Madam, I am
Your most obedient, and most humble Servant.
KING. Think, mighty Princess, think this Court your own,
Nor think the Landlord me, this House my Inn;
Call for whate'er you will, you'll Nothing pay.
27 I feel a sudden Pain within my Breast,
Nor know I whether it arise from Love,
Or only the Wind-Cholick. Time must shew.
Oh Thumb ! What do we to thy Valour owe?
Ask some Reward, great as we can bestow.
TOM THUMB. 28 I ask not Kingdoms, I can conquer those,
I ask not Money, Money I've enough;
For what I've done, and what I mean to do,
For Giants slain, and Giants yet unborn,
Which I will slay -- if this be call'd a Debt,
Take my Receipt in full -- I ask but this,
29 To Sun my self in Huncamunca's Eyes.
KING. Prodigious bold Request.
QUEEN. [Aside.] -- 30 Be still my Soul.
TOM THUMB. 31 My heart is at the Threshold of your Mouth,
And waits its answer there -- Oh! do not frown,
I've try'd, to Reason's Tune, to tune my Soul,
But Love did overwind and crack the String.
Tho' Jove in Thunder had cry'd out, YOU SHAN'T,
I should have love'd her still -- for oh strange fate,
Then when I lov'd her least, I lov'd her most.
KING. It is resolv'd -- the Princess is your own.
TOM THUMB. 32 Oh! happy, happy, happy, happy, Thumb !
QUEEN. Consider, Sir, reward your Soldiers Merit,
But give not Huncamunca to Tom Thumb .
KING. Tom Thumb ! Odzooks, my wide extended Realm
Knows not a Name so glorious as Tom Thumb .
Let Macedonia, Alexander boast,
Let Rome her Caesar's and her Scipio's show,
Her Messieurs France , let Holland boast Mynheers ,
Ireland her O's, her Mac's let Scotland boast,
Let England boast no other than Tom Thumb .
QUEEN. Tho' greater yet his boasted Merit was,
He shall not have my Daughter, that is Pos'.
KING. Ha! sayst thou Dollalolla ?
QUEEN. -- I say he shan't.
KING. 33 Then by our Royal Self we swear you lye.
QUEEN. 34 Who but a Dog, who but a Dog,
Would use me as thou dost? Me, who have lain
35 These twenty Years so loving by thy Side.
But I will be reveng'd. I'll hang my self,
Then tremble all who did this Match persuade,
36 For riding on a Cat, from high I'll fall,
And squirt down Royal Vengeance on you all.
FOODLE. 37 Her Majesty the Queen is in a Passion.
KING. 38 Be she, or be she not -- I'll to the Girl
And pave thy Way, oh Thumb -- Now, by our self,
We were indeed a pretty King of Clouts,
To truckle to her Will -- For when by Force
Or Art the Wife her Husband over-reaches,
Give him the Peticoat, and her the Breeches.
TOM THUMB. 39 Whisper, ye Winds, that Huncamunca's mine;
Echoes repeat, that Huncamunca's mine!
The dreadful Bus'ness of the War is o'er,
And Beauty, heav'nly Beauty! crowns my Toils,
I've thrown the bloody Garment now aside,
And Hymeneal Sweets invite my Bride.
So when some Chimney-Sweeper, all the Day,
Hath through dark Paths pursu'd the sooty Way,
At Night, to wash his Hands and Face he flies,
And in his t'other Shirt with his Brickdusta lies.
GRIZZLE solus .
GRIZZLE. 40 Where art thou Grizzle ? where are now thy Glories?
Where are the Drums that waken'd thee to Honour?
Greatness is a lac'd Coat from Monmouth-Street ,
Which Fortune lends us for a Day to wear,
To-morrow puts it on another's Back.
The spiteful Sun but yesterday survey'd.
His Rival, high as Saint Paul's Cupola;
Now may he see me as Fleet-Ditch laid low.
QUEEN. 41 Teach me to scold, prodigious-minded Grizzle .
Mountain of Treason, ugly as the Devil,
Teach this confounded hateful Mouth of mine,
To spout forth Words malicious as thy self,
Words, which might shame all Billingsgate to speak.
GRIZZLE. Far be it from my Pride, to think my Tongue
Your Royal Lips can in that Art instruct,
Wherein you so excel. But may I ask,
Without Offence, wherefore my Queen would scold?
QUEEN. Wherefore, Oh! Blood and Thunder! han't you heard
(What ev'ry Corner of the Court resounds)
That little Thumb will be a great Man made.
GRIZZLE. I heard it, I confess -- for who, alas!
42 Can always stop his Ears -- but wou'd my Teeth,
By grinding Knives, had first been set on Edge.
QUEEN. Would I had heard at the still Noon of Night,
The Hallaloo of Fire in every Street!
Odsbobs! I have a mind to hang my self,
To think I shou'd a Grandmother be made,
By such a Raskal. -- Sure the King forgets,
When in a Pudding, by his Mother put,
The Bastard, by a Tinker, on a Stile
Was drop'd. -- O, good Lord Grizzle ! can I bear
To see him from a Pudding, mount the Throne?
Or can, Oh can! my Huncamunca bear,
To take a Pudding's Offspring to her Arms?
GRIZZLE. Oh Horror! Horror! Horror! cease my Queen,
43 Thy Voice like twenty Screech-Owls, wracks my Brain.
QUEEN. Then rouse thy Spirit -- we may yet prevent
This hated Match. --
GRIZZLE. -- We will; 44 not Fate it self,
Should it conspire with Thomas Thumb , should cause it.
I'll swim through Seas; I'll ride upon the Clouds;
I'll dig the Earth; I'll blow out ev'ry Fire;
I'll rave; I'll rant; I'll rise; I'll rush; I'll roar;
Fierce as the Man whom 45 smiling Dolphins bore,
From the Prosaick to Poetick Shore.
I'll tear the Scoundrel into twenty Pieces.
QUEEN. Oh, no! prevent the Match, but hurt him not;
For tho' I would not have him have my Daughter,
Yet can we kill the Man that kill'd the Giants?
GRIZZLE. I tell you, Madam, it was all a Trick,
He made the Giants first, and then he kill'd them;
As Fox-hunters bring Foxes to the Wood,
And then with Hounds they drive them out again.
QUEEN. How! have you seen no Giants? Are there not
Now, in the Yard, ten thousand proper Giants?
GRIZZLE. 46 Indeed, I cannot positively tell,
But firmly do believe there is not One.
QUEEN. Hence! from my Sight! thou Traitor, hie away;
By all my Stars! thou enviest Tom Thumb .
Go, Sirrah! go, 47 hie away! hie! -- thou art
A setting Dog, be gone.
GRIZZLE. Madam, I go.
Tom Thumb shall feel the Vengeance you have rais'd:
So, when two Dogs are fighting in the Streets,
With a third Dog, one of the two Dogs meets,
With angry Teeth, he bites him to the Bone,
And this Dog smarts for what the Dog had done.
QUEEN sola .
QUEEN. And whither shall I go? -- Alack-a-day!
I love Tom Thumb -- but must not tell him so;
For what's a Woman, when her Virtue's gone?
A Coat without its Lace; Wig out of Buckle;
A Stocking with a Hole in't -- I can't live
Without my Virtue, or without Tom Thumb .
48 Then let me weigh them in two equal Scales,
In this Scale put my Virtue, that, Tom Thumb .
Alas! Tom Thumb is heavier than my Virtue.
But hold! -- perhaps I may be left a Widow:
This Match prevented, then Tom Thumb is mine:
In that dear Hope, I will forget my Pain.
So, when some Wench to Tothill-Bridewell's sent,
With beating Hemp, and Flogging she's content:
She hopes in time to ease her present Pain,
At length is free, and walks the Streets again.
THE END OF THE FIRST ACT
SCENE, The Street .
BAILIFF. Come on, my trusty Follower, come on,
This Day discharge thy Duty, and at Night
A Double Mug of Beer, and Beer shall glad thee.
Stand here by me, this Way must Noodle pass.
FOLLOWER. No more, no more, Oh Bailiff! every Word
Inspires my Soul with Virtue. -- Oh! I long
To meet the Enemy in the Street -- and nab him;
To lay arresting Hands upon his Back,
And drag him trembling to the Spunging-House.
BAILIFF. There, when I have him, I will spunge upon him.
49 Oh! glorious Thought! by the Sun, Moon, and Stars,
I will enjoy it, tho it be in Thought!
Yes, yes, my Follower, I will enjoy it.
FOLLOWER. Enjoy it then some other time, for now
Our Prey approaches.
BAILIFF. Let us retire.
TOM THUMB, NOODLE, BAILIFF, FOLLOWER.
TOM THUMB. Trust me my Noodle , I am wondrous sick;
For tho' I love the gentle Huncamunca ,
Yet at the Thought of Marriage, I grow pale;
For oh! -- 50 but swear thoul't keep it ever secret,
I will unfold a Tale will make thee stare.
NOODLE. I swear by lovely Huncamunca's Charms.
TOM THUMB. Then know -- 51 my Grand-mamma hath often said,
Tom Thumb , beware of Marriage.
NOODLE. Sir, I blush
To think a Warrior great in Arms as you,
Should be affrighted by his Grand-mamma;
Can an old woman's empty Dreams deter
The blooming Hero from the Virgin's Arms?
Think of the Joy that will your Soul alarm,
When in her fond Embraces clasp'd you lie,
While on her panting Breast dissolv'd in Bliss,
You pour out all Tom Thumb in every Kiss.
TOM THUMB. Oh! Noodle , thou hast fir'd my eager Soul;
Spight of my Grandmother, she shall be mine;
I'll hug, caress, I'll eat her up with Love.
Whole Days, and Nights, and Years shall be too short
For our Enjoyment, every Sun shall rise
52 Blushing, to see us in our Bed together.
NOODLE. Oh Sir! this Purpose of your Soul pursue.
BAILIFF. Oh, Sir! I have an Action against you.
NOODLE. At whose Suit is it?
BAILIFF. At your Taylor's, Sir.
Your Taylor put this Warrant in my Hands,
And I arrest you, Sir, at his Commands.
TOM THUMB. Ha! Dogs! Arrest my Friend before my Face!
Think you Tom Thumb will suffer this Disgrace!
But let vain Cowards threaten by their Word,
Tom Thumb shall shew his Anger by his Sword.
Kills the BAILIFF and his FOLLOWER.
BAILIFF. Oh, I am slain!
FOLLOWER. I am murthered also,
And to the Shades, the dismal Shades below,
My Bailiff's faithful Follower I go.
NOODLE. 53 Go then to Hell, like Rascals as you are,
And give our Service to the Bailiffs there.
TOM THUMB. Thus perish all the Bailiffs in the Land,
Till Debtors at Noon-Day shall walk the streets,
And no one fear a Bailiff or his Writ.
The Princess Huncamunca's Apartment .
HUNCAMUNCA, CLEORA, MUSTACHA.
HUNCAMUNCA. 54 Give me some Musick -- see that it be sad.
CLEORA sings .
Cupid, ease a Love-sick Maid,
Bring thy Quiver to her Aid;
With equal Ardor wound the Swain:
Beauty should never sigh in vain.
Let him feel the pleasing Smart,
Drive thy Arrow thro' his Heart;
When One you wound, you then destroy;
When Both you kill, you kill with Joy .
HUNCAMUNCA. 55 O, Tom Thumb ! Tom Thumb ! wherefore art thou Tom Thumb ?
Why had'st thou not been born of Royal Race?
Why had not mighty Bantam been thy Father?
Or else the King of Brentford, Old or New ?
MUSTACHA. I am surpriz'd that your Highness can give your
self a Moment's Uneasiness about that little insignificant Fellow,
56 Tom Thumb the Great -- One properer for a Play-thing, than
a Husband. -- Were he my Husband, his Horns should be as long
as his Body. -- If you had fallen in Love with a Grenadier, I
should not have wonder'd at it -- If you had fallen in Love with
Something; but to fall in Love with Nothing!
HUNCAMUNCA. Cease, my Mustacha , on thy Duty cease.
The Zephyr , when in flowry Vales it plays,
Is not so soft, so sweet as Thummy's Breath.
The Dove is not so gentle to its Mate.
MUSTACHA. The Dove is every bit as proper for a Husband --
Alas! Madam, there's not a Beau about the Court looks so little
like a Man -- He is a perfect Butterfly, a Thing without Substance,
and almost without Shadow too.
HUNCAMUNCA. This Rudeness is unseasonable, desist;
Or, I shall think this Railing comes from Love.
Tom Thumb's a Creature of that charming Form,
That no one can abuse, unless they love him.
MUSTACHA. Madam, the King.
KING. Let all but Huncamunca leave the Room.
Exit CLEORA, and MUSTACHA.
Daughter, I have observ'd of late some Grief,
Unusual in your Countenance -- your Eyes,
57 That, like two open Windows, us'd to shew
The lovely Beauty of the Rooms within,
Have now two Blinds before them -- What is the Cause?
Say, have you not enough of Meat and Drink?
We've giv'n strict Orders not to have you stinted.
HUNCAMUNCA. Alas! my Lord, I value not my self,
That once I eat two Fowls and half a Pig;
58 Small is that Praise; but oh! a Maid may want,
What she can neither eat nor drink.
KING. What's that?
HUNCAMUNCA. 59 O spare my Blushes; but I mean a Husband.
KING. If that be all, I have provided one,
A husband great in Arms, whose warlike Sword
Streams with the yellow Blood of slaughter'd Giants.
Whose Name in Terrâ Incognitâ is known,
Whose Valour, Wisdom, Virtue make a Noise,
Great as the Kettle-Drums of twenty Armies.
HUNCAMUNCA. Whom does my Royal Father mean?
KING. Tom Thumb .
HUNCAMUNCA. Is it possible?
KING. Ha! the Window-Blinds are gone,
60 A Country Dance of Joy is in your Face,
Your Eyes spit Fire, your Cheeks grow red as Beef.
HUNCAMUNCA. O, there's a Magick-musick in that Sound,
Enough to turn me into Beef indeed.
Yes, I will own, since licens'd by your Word,
I'll own Tom Thumb the Cause of all my Grief.
For him I've sigh'd, I've wept, I've gnaw'd my Sheets.
KING. Oh! thou shalt gnaw thy tender Sheets no more,
A Husband thou shalt have to mumble now.
HUNCAMUNCA. Oh! happy Sound! henceforth, let no one tell,
That Huncamunca shall lead Apes in Hell.
Oh! I am over-joy'd!
KING. I see thou art.
61 Joy lightens in thy Eyes, and thunders from thy Brows;
Transports, like Lightning, dart along thy Soul,
As Small-shot thro' a hedge.
HUNCAMUNCA. Oh! say not small.
KING. This happy News shall on our Tongue ride Post,
Our self will bear the happy News to Thumb .
Yet think not, Daughter, that your powerful Charms
Must still detain the Hero from his Arms;
Various his Duty, various his Delight;
Now is his Turn to kiss, and now to fight;
And now to kiss again. So mighty 62 Jove ,
When with excessive thund'ring tir'd above,
Comes down to Earth, and takes a Bit -- and then,
Flies to his Trade of Thund'ring, back again.
63 GRIZZLE. Oh, Huncamunca, Huncamunca , oh,
Thy pouting Breasts, like Kettle-Drums of Brass,
Beat everlasting loud Alarms of Joy;
As bright as Brass they are, and oh, as hard;
Oh Huncamunca, Huncamunca ! oh!
HUNCAMUNCA. Ha! do'st thou know me, Princess as I am,
64 That thus of me you dare to make your Game.
GRIZZLE. Oh Huncamunca , well I know that you
A Princess are, and a King's Daughter too.
But Love no Meanness scorns, no Grandeur fears,
Love often Lords into the Cellar bears,
And bids the sturdy Porter come up Stairs.
For what's too high for Love, or what's too low?
Oh Huncamunca, Huncamunca , oh!
HUNCAMUNCA. But granting all you say of Love were true,
My Love, alas! is to another due!
In vain to me, a Suitoring you come;
For I'm already promis'd to Tom Thumb .
GRIZZLE. And can my Princess such a Durgen wed,
One fitter for your Pocket than your Bed!
Advis'd by me, the worthless Baby shun,
Or you will ne'er be brought to bed of one.
Oh take me to thy Arms and never flinch,
Who am a Man by Jupiter ev'ry Inch.
65 Then while in Joys together lost we lie
I'll press thy Soul while Gods stand wishing by.
HUNCAMUNCA. If, Sir, what you insinuate you prove
All Obstacles of Promise you remove;
For all Engagements to a Man must fall,
Whene'er that Man is prov'd no Man at all.
GRIZZLE. Oh let him seek some Dwarf, some fairy Miss,
Where no Joint-stool must lift him to the Kiss.
But by the Stars and Glory, you appear
Much fitter for a Prussian Grenadier;
One Globe alone, on Atlas Shoulders rests,
Two Globes are less than Huncamunca's Breasts:
The Milky-way is not so white, that's flat,
And sure thy Breasts are full as large as that.
HUNCAMUNCA. Oh, Sir, so strong your Eloquence I find,
It is impossible to be unkind.
GRIZZLE. Ah! speak that o'er again, and let the 66 Sound
From one Pole to another Pole rebound;
The Earth and Sky, each be a Battledoor
And keep the Sound, that Shuttlecock, up an Hour;
To Doctors Commons , for a License I,
Swift as an Arrow from a Bow will fly.
HUNCAMUNCA. Oh no! lest some Disaster we should meet,
'Twere better to be marry'd at the Fleet.
GRIZZLE. Forbid it, all ye Powers, a Princess should
By that vile Place, contaminate her Blood;
My quick Return shall to my Charmer prove,
I travel on the 67 Post-Horses of love.
HUNCAMUNCA. Those Post-Horses to me will seem too slow,
Tho' they should fly swift as the Gods, when they
Ride on behind that Post-Boy, Opportunity.
TOM THUMB, HUNCAMUNCA.
TOM THUMB. Where is my Princess, where's my Huncamunca ?
Where are those Eyes, those Cardmatches of Love,
That 68 Light up all with Love my waxen Soul?
Where is that Face which artful Nature made
69 In the same Moulds where Venus self was cast?
HUNCAMUNCA. 70 Oh! What is Musick to the Ear that's deaf,
Or a Goose-Pye to him that has no taste?
What are these Praises now to me, since I
Am promis'd to another?
TOM THUMB. Ha! promis'd.
HUNCAMUNCA. Too sure; it's written in the Book of Fate.
TOM THUMB. 71 Then I will tear away the Leaf
Wherein it's writ, or if Fate won't allow
So large a Gap within its Journal-Book,
I'll blot it out at least.
GLUMDALCA, TOM THUMB, HUNCAMUNCA.
GLUMDALCA. 72 I need not ask if you are Huncamunca ,
Your Brandy Nose proclaims --
HUNCAMUNCA. I am a Princess;
Nor need I ask who you are.
GLUMDALCA. A Giantess;
The Queen of those who made and unmade Queens.
HUNCAMUNCA. The Man, whose chief Ambition is to be
My Sweetheart, hath destroy'd these mightly Giants.
GLUMDALCA. Your Sweetheart? do'st thou think the Man, who once
Hath worn my easy Chains, will e'er wear thine?
HUNCAMUNCA. Well may your chains be easy, since if Fame
Says true, they have been try'd on twenty Husbands.
73 The Glove or Boot, so many times pull'd on,
May well sit easy on the Hand or Foot.
GLUMDALCA. I glory in the Number, and when I
Sit poorly down, like thee, content with one,
Heaven change this Face for one as bad as thine.
HUNCAMUNCA. Let me see nearer what this Beauty is,
That captivates the Heart of Men by Scores.
Holds a Candle to her Face .
Oh! Heaven, thou art as ugly as the Devil.
GLUMDALCA. You'd give the best of Shoes within your Shop,
To be but half so handsome.
HUNCAMUNCA. -- Since you come
74 To that, I'll put my Beauty to the Test;
Tom Thumb , I'm yours, if you with me will go.
GLUMDALCA. Oh! stay, Tom Thumb , and you alone shall fill
That Bed where twenty giants us'd to lie.
TOM THUMB. In the Balcony that o'er-hangs the Stage,
I've seen a Whore two 'Prentices engage;
One half a Crown does in his Fingers hold,
The other shews a little Piece of Gold;
She the Half Guinea wisely does purloin,
And leaves the larger and the baser Coin.
Exeunt all but GLUMDALCA .
GLUMDALCA. Left, scorn'd, and loath'd for such a Chit as this;
75 I feel the Storm that's rising in my Mind,
Tempests, and Whirlwinds rise, and rowl and roar.
I'm all within a Hurricane, as if
76 The World's four Winds were pent within my Carcass.
77 Confusion, Horror, Murder, Guts and Death.
KING. 78 Sure never was so sad a King as I,
79 My Life is worn as ragged as a Coat
A Beggar wears; a Prince should put it off,
80 To love a Captive and a Giantess.
Oh Love! Oh Love! how great a King art thou!
My Tongue's thy Trumpet, and thou Trumpetest,
Unknown to me, within me. 81 oh Glumdalca !
Heaven thee design'd a Giantess to make,
But an Angelick Soul was shuffled in.
82 I am a Multitude of Walking Griefs,
And only on her Lips the Balm is found,
83 To spread a Plaister that might cure them all.
GLUMDALCA. What do I hear?
KING. What do I see?
84 GLUMDALCA. Ah Wretched Queen!
KING. Oh! Wretched King!
KING. 85 Oh!
TOM THUMB, HUNCAMUNCA, PARSON.
PARSON. Happy's the Wooing, that's not long adoing;
For if I guess aright, Tom Thumb this Night
Shall give a Being to a New Tom Thumb .
TOM THUMB. It shall be my Endeavour so to do.
HUNCAMUNCA. Oh! fie upon you, Sir, you make me blush.
TOM THUMB. It is the Virgin's Sign, and suits you well:
86 I know not where, nor how, nor what I am,
87 I'm so transported, I have lost my self.
HUNCAMUNCA. Forbid it, all ye Stars, for you're so small,
That were you lost, you'd find your self no more.
So the unhappy Sempstress once, they say,
Her needle in a Pottle, lost, of Hay;
In vain she look'd, and look'd, and made her Moan,
For ah, the Needle was for ever gone.
PARSON. Long may they live, and love, and propagate,
Till the whole Land be peopled with Tom Thumbs .
88 So when the Cheshire Cheese a Maggot breeds,
Another and another still succeeds.
By thousands, and ten thousands they increase,
Till one continued Maggot fills the rotten Cheese.
NOODLE, and then GRIZZLE.
NOODLE. 89 Sure Nature means to break her solid Chain,
Or else unfix the World, and in a Rage,
To hurl it from its Axle-tree and Hinges;
All things are so confus'd, the King's in Love,
The Queen is drunk, the Princess married is.
GRIZZLE. Oh! Noodle , hast thou Huncamunca seen?
NOODLE. I've seen a Thousand Sights this day, where none
Are by the wonderful Bitch herself outdone,
The King, the Queen, and all the Court are Sights.
GRIZZLE. 90 D------n your Delay, you Trifler, are you drunk, ha?
I will not hear one Word but Huncamunca .
NOODLE. By this time she is married to Tom Thumb .
GRIZZLE. 91 My Huncamunca .
NOODLE. Your Huncamunca .
Tom Thumb's Huncamunca , every Man's Huncamunca .
GRIZZLE. If this be true all Womankind are damn'd.
NOODLE. If it be not, may I be so my self.
GRIZZLE. See where she comes! I'll not believe a Word
Against that Face, upon whose 92 ample Brow,
Sits Innocence with Majesty Enthron'd.
GRIZZLE. Where has my Huncamunca been? See here
The Licence in my Hand!
HUNCAMUNCA. Alas! Tom Thumb .
GRIZZLE. Why dost thou mention him?
HUNCAMUNCA. Ah me! Tom Thumb .
GRIZZLE. What means my lovely Huncamunca ?
GRIZZLE. Oh! Speak.
GRIZZLE. Ha! your every Word is Hum
93 You force me still to answer you Tom Thumb .
Tom Thumb , I'm on the Rack, I'm in a Flame,
94 Tom Thumb , Tom Thumb , Tom Thumb , you love the Name;
So pleasing is that Sound, that were you dumb
You still would find a Voice to cry Tom Thumb .
HUNCAMUNCA. Oh! Be not hasty to proclaim my Doom,
My ample Heart for more than one has Room,
A Maid like me, Heaven form'd at least for two,
95 I married him, and now I'll marry you.
GRIZZLE. Ha! dost thou own thy Falshood to my Face?
Think'st thou that I will share thy Husband's place,
Since to that Office one cannot suffice,
And since you scorn to dine one single Dish on,
Go, get your Husband put into Commission,
Commissioners to discharge, (ye Gods) it fine is,
The duty of a Husband to your Highness;
Yet think not long, I will my Rival bear,
Or unreveng'd the slighted Willow wear;
The gloomy, brooding Tempest now confin'd.
Within the hollow Caverns of my Mind,
In dreadful Whirl, shall rowl along the Coasts,
Shall thin the Land of all the Men it boasts,
96 And cram up ev'ry Chink of Hell with Ghosts.
97 So have I seen, in some dark Winter's Day,
A sudden Storm rush down the Sky's High-Way,
Sweep thro' the streets with terrible ding dong,
Gush thro' the Spouts, and wash whole Crowds along.
The crowded Shops, the thronging Vermin skreen,
Together cram the Dirty and the Clean,
And not one Shoe-Boy in the Street is seen.
HUNCAMUNCA. Oh! fatal Rashness should his Fury slay,
My hapless Bridegroom on his Wedding Day;
I, who this Morn, of two chose which to wed,
May go again this Night alone to Bed;
98 So have I seen some wild unsettled Fool,
Who had her Choice of this, and that Joint Stool;
To give the Preference to either, loath
And fondly coveting to sit on both:
While the two Stools her Sitting Part confound,
Between 'em both fall Squat upon the Ground.
THE END OF THE SECOND ACT.
SCENE, King Arthur's Palace .
99 GHOST solus .
GHOST. Hail! ye black Horrors of Midnight's Midnoon!
Ye Fairies, Goblins, Bats and Screech-Owls, Hail!
And Oh! ye mortal Watchmen, whose hoarse Throats
Th' Immortal Ghosts dread Croakings counterfeit,
All Hail! -- Ye dancing Fantoms, who by Day,
Are some condemn'd to fast, some feast in Fire;
Now play in Church-yards, skipping o'er the Graves,
To the 100 loud Musick of the silent Bell,
KING, and GHOST.
KING. What Noise is this? -- What Villain dares,
At this dread Hour, with Feet and Voice prophane,
Disturb our Royal Walls?
GHOST. One who defines
Thy empty Power to hurt him; 101 one who dares
Walk in thy Bed-Chamber.
KING. Presumptuous Slave!
GHOST. Threaten others with that Word,
102 I am a Ghost, and am already dead.
KING. Ye Stars! 'tis well; were thy last Hour to come,
This Moment had been it; 103 yet by thy Shrowd
I'll pull thee backward, squeeze thee to a Bladder,
'Till thou dost groan thy Nothingness away.
GHOST retires .
Thou fly'st! 'Tis well.
104 I thought what was the Courage of a Ghost!
Yet, dare not, on thy Life -- Why say I that,
Since Life thou hast not? -- Dare not walk again,
Within these Walls, on pain of the Red-Sea .
For, if henceforth I ever find thee here,
As sure, sure as a Gun, I'll have thee laid --
GHOST. Were the Red-Sea , a Sea of Holland's Gin,
The Liquor (when alive) whose very Smell
I did detest, did loath -- yet for the Sake
Of Thomas Thumb , I would be laid therein.
KING. Ha! said you?
GHOST. Yes, my Liege, I said Tom Thumb ,
Whose Father's Ghost I am -- once not unknown
To mighty Arthur . But, I see, 'tis true,
The dearest Friend, when dead, we all forget.
KING. 'Tis he, it is the honest Gaffer Thumb .
Oh, let me press thee in my eager Arms,
Thou best of Ghosts! Thou something more than Ghost!
GHOST. Would I were Something more, that we again
Might feel each other in the warm Embrace.
But now I have th' Advantage of my King,
105 For I feel thee, whilst thou dost not feel me.
KING. But say, 106 thou dearest Air, Oh! say, what Dread,
Important Business sends thee back to Earth?
GHOST. Oh! then prepare to hear -- which, but to hear,
Is full enough to send thy spirit hence.
Thy Subjects up in Arms, by Grizzle led,
Will, ere the rosy finger'd Morn shall ope
The Shutters of the Sky, before the Gate
Of this thy Toyal Palace, swarming spread:
107 So have I seen the Bees in Clusters swarm,
So have I seen the Stars in frosty Nights,
So have I seen the Sand in windy Days,
So have I seen the Ghosts on Pluto's Shore,
So have I seen the Flowers in Spring arise,
So have I seen the Leaves in Autumn fall,
So have I seen the Fruits in Summer smile,
So have I seen the Snow in Winter frown.
KING. D------n all thou'st seen! -- Dost thou, beneath the Shape
Of Gaffer Thumb , come hither to abuse me,
With Similies to keep me on the Rack?
Hence -- or by all the Torments of thy Hell,
108 I'll run thee thro' the Body, tho' thou'st none.
GHOST. Arthur , beware; I must this Moment hence,
Not frighted by your Voice, but by the Cocks;
Arthur beware, beware, beware, beware!
Strive to avert thy yet impending Fate;
For if thou'rt kill'd To-day
To-morrow all thy Care will come too late.
KING solus .
KING. Oh! stay, and leave me not uncertain thus!
And whilst thou tellest me what's like my Fate,
Oh, teach me how I may avert it too!
Curst be the Man who first a Simile made!
Curst, ev'ry Bard who writes! -- So have I seen
Those whose Comparisons are just and true,
And those who liken things not like at all.
The Devil is happy, that the whole Creation
Can furnish out no Simile to his Fortune.
QUEEN. What is the Cause, my Arthur , that you steal
Thus silently from Dollallolla's Breast?
Why dost thou leave me in the 109 Dark alone,
When well thou know'st I am afraid of Sprites?
KING. Oh Dollallolla ! do not blame my Love;
I hop'd the Fumes of Last Night's Punch had laid
Thy lovely Eye-lids fast. -- But, Oh! I find
There is no Power in Drams, to quiet Wives;
Each Morn, as the returning Sun, they wake,
And shine upon their Husbands.
QUEEN. Think, Oh think!
What a Surprize it must be to the Sun,
Rising, to find the vanish'd World away.
What less can be the wretched Wife's Surprize,
When, stretching out her Arms to fold thee fast,
She folds her useless Bolster in her Arms.
110 Think, think on that -- Oh! think, think well on that.
I do remember also to have read
111 In Dryden's Ovid's Metamorphosis ,
That Jove in Form inanimate did lie
With beauteous Danae ; and trust me, Love
112 I fear'd the Bolster might have been a Jove .
KING. Come to my Arms, most virtuous of thy Sex;
Oh Dollallolla ! were all Wives like thee,
So many Husbands never had worn Horns.
Should Huncamunca of thy Worth partake,
Tom Thumb indeed were blest. -- Oh fatal Name!
For didst thou know one Quarter what I know,
Then would'st thou know -- Alas! what thou would'st know!
QUEEN. What can I gather hence? Why dost thou speak
Like Men who carry Raree-Shows about,
Now you shall see, Gentlemen, what you shall see ?
O tell me more, or thou hast told too much.
KING, QUEEN, NOODLE.
NOODLE. Long life attend your Majesties serene,
Great Arthur , King, and Dollallolla , Queen!
Lord Grizzle , with a bold, rebellious Crowd,
Advances to the Palace, threat'ning loud,
Unless the Princess be deliver'd straight,
And the victorious Thumb , without his Pate,
They are resolv'd to batter down the Gate.
KING, QUEEN, HUNCAMUNCA, NOODLE.
KING. See where the Princess comes! Where is Tom Thumb ?
HUNCAMUNCA. Oh! Sir, about an Hour and half ago
He sallied out to encounter with the Foe,
And swore, unless his Fate had him mis-led,
From Grizzle's Shoulders to cut off his Head,
And serve't up with your Chocolate in Bed.
KING. 'Tis well, I find one Devil told us both.
Come Dollallolla, Huncamunca , come,
Within we'll wait for the victorious Thumb ;
In Peace and Safety we secure may stay,
While to his Arm we trust the bloody Fray;
Tho' Men and Giants should conspire with Gods,
113 He is alone equal to all these Odds.
QUEEN. He is indeed, a 114 Helmet to us all,
While he supports, we need not fear to fall;
His Arm dispatches all things to our Wish,
And serves up every Foe's Head in a Dish.
Void is the Mistress of the House of Care,
While the good Cook presents the Bill of Fare;
Whether the Cod, that Northern King of Fish,
Or Duck, or Goose, or Pig, adorn the Dish.
No Fears the Number of her Guests afford,
But at her Hour she sees the Dinner on the Board.
, a Plain .
Lord GRIZZLE, FOODLE, and Rebels .
GRIZZLE. Thus far our Arms with Victory are crown'd;
For tho' we have not fought, yet we have found
115 No Enemy to fight withal.
FOODLE. Yet I,
Methinks, would willingly avoid this Day,
116 This First of April , to engage our Foes.
GRIZZLE. This Day, of all the Days of th' Year, I'd choose,
For on this Day my Grandmother was born.
Gods! I will make Tom Thumb an April Fool;
117 Will teach his Wit an Errand it ne'er knew,
And send it Post to the Elysian Shades.
FOODLE. I'm glad to find our Army is so stout,
Nor does it move my Wonder less than Joy.
GRIZZLE. 118 What Friends we have, and how we came so strong,
I'll softly tell you as we march along.
Thunder and Lightning .
TOM THUMB, GLUMDALCA cum suis .
TOM THUMB. Oh, Noodle ! hast thou seen a Day like this?
119 The unborn Thunder rumbles o'er our Heads,
120 As if the Gods meant to unhinge the World;
And Heaven and Earth in wild Confusion hurl;
Yet will I boldly tread the tott'ring Ball.
MERLIN. Tom Thumb!
TOM THUMB. What Voice is this I hear?
MERLIN. Tom Thumb!
TOM THUMB. Again it calls.
MERLIN. Tom Thumb!
GLUMDALCA. It calls again.
TOM THUMB. Appear, whoe'er thou art, I fear thee not.
MERLIN. Thou hast no Cause to fear, I am thy Friend,
Merlin by Name, a Conjuror by Trade,
And to my Art thou dost thy Being owe.
TOM THUMB. How!
MERLIN. Hear then the mystick Getting of Tom Thumb .
121 His Father was a Ploughman plain,
His Mother milk'd the Cow;
And yet the way to get a Son,
This Couple knew not how.
Until such time the good old Man
To learned Merlin goes,
And there to him, in great Distress,
In secret manner shows;
How in his Heart he wish'd to have
A Child, in time to come,
To be his Heir, tho' it might be
No biger than his Thumb:
Of which old Merlin was foretold,
That he his Wish should have;
And so a Son of Stature small,
The Charmer to him gave .
Thou'st heard the past, look up and see the future.
TOM THUMB. 122 Lost in Amazement's Gulph, my Senses sink;
See there, Glumdalca , see another 123 Me!
GLUMDALCA. O Sight of Horror! see, you are devour'd
By the expanded Jaws of a red Cow.
MERLIN. Let not these Sights deter thy noble Mind,
124 For lo! a Sight more glorious courts thy Eyes;
See from a far a Theatre arise;
There Ages yet unborn, shall Tribute pay
To the Heroick Actions of this Day:
Then Buskin Tragedy at length shall choose
Thy Name the best Supporter of her Muse.
TOM THUMB. Enough, let every warlike Musick sound,
We fall contented, if we fall renown'd.
Lord GRIZZLE, FOODLE, Rebels, on one Side .
TOM THUMB, GLUMDALCA, on the other .
FOODLE. At length the Enemy advances nigh,
125 I hear them with my Ear, and see them with my Eye.
GRIZZLE. Draw all your Swords, for Liberty we fight,
126 And Liberty the Mustard is of Life.
TOM THUMB. Are you the Man whom Men fam'd Grizzle name?
GRIZZLE. 127 Are you the much more fam'd Tom Thumb ?
TOM THUMB. The same.
GRIZZLE. Come on, our Worth upon our selves we'll prove,
For Liberty I fight.
TOM THUMB. And I for Love.
GLUMDALCA. Turn, Coward, turn, nor from a Woman fly.
A bloody Engagement between the two Armies here, Drums beating, Trumpets sounding, Thunder and Lightning. -- They fight off and on several times. Some fall . GRIZZLE and GLUMDALCA remain .
GRIZZLE. Away -- thou art too ignoble for my Arm.
GLUMDALCA. Have at thy Heart.
GRIZZLE. Nay then, I thrust at thine.
GLUMDALCA. You push too well, you've run me thro' the Guts,
And I am dead.
GRIZZLE. Then there's an End of One.
TOM THUMB. When thou art dead, then there's an End of Two,
GRIZZLE. Tom Thumb!
TOM THUMB. Rebel!
GRIZZLE. Tom Thumb!
TOM THUMB. Hell!
TOM THUMB. Thou hast it there.
GRIZZLE. Too sure I feel it.
TOM THUMB. To Hell then, like a Rebel as you are,
And give my Service to the Rebels there.
GRIZZLE. Triumph not, Thumb , nor think thou shalt enjoy
Thy Huncamunca undisturb'd, I'll send
129 My Ghost to fetch her to the other World;
130 It shall but bait at Heaven, and then return.
131 But, ha! I feel Death rumbling in my Brains,
132 Some kinder Spright knocks softly at my Soul,
And gently whispers it to haste away:
I come, I come, most willingly I come.
133 So; when some City Wife, for Country Air,
To Hampstead , or to Highgate does repair;
Her, to make haste, Her Husband does implore,
And cries, My Dear, the Coach is at the Door .
With equal Wish, desirous to be gone,
She gets into the Coach, and then she cries -- Drive on!
TOM THUMB. With those last Words 134 he vomited his Soul,
Which, 135 like whipt Cream, the Devil will swallow down.
Bear off the Body, and cut off the Head,
Which I will to the King in Triumph lug;
Rebellion's dead, and now I'll go to Breakfast.
KING, QUEEN, HUNCAMUNCA, and Courtiers .
KING. Open the Prisons, set the Wretched free,
And bid our Treasurer disburse six Pounds
To pay their Debts. -- Let no one weep To-day.
Come, Dollallolla ; 136 Curse that odious Name!
It is so long, it asks an Hour to speak it.
By Heavens! I'll change it into Doll , or Loll ,
Or any other civil Monosyllable
That will not tire my Tongue. -- Come, sit thee down.
Here seated, let us view the Dancer's Sports;
Bid 'em advance. This is the Wedding-Day
Of Princess Huncamunca and Tom Thumb ;
Tom Thumb! who wins two Victories 137 To-day,
And this way marches, bearing Grizzle's Head.
A Dance here .
NOODLE. Oh! monstrous, dreadful, terrible, Oh! Oh!
Deaf be my Ears, for ever blind my Eyes!
Dumb be my Tongue! Feet lame! All senses lost!
138 Howl Wolves, grunt Bears, hiss Snakes, shriek all ye Ghosts!
KING. What does the Blockhead mean?
NOODLE. I mean, my Liege
139 Only to grace my Tale with decent Horror;
Whilst from my Garret, twice two Stories high,
I look'd abroad into the Streets below;
I saw Tom Thumb attended by the Mob,
Twice Twenty Shoe-Boys, twice two Dozen Links,
Chairmen and Porters, Hackney-Coachmen, Whores;
Aloft he bore the grizly Head of Grizzle ;
When of a sudden thro' the Streets there came
A Cow, of larger than the usual Size,
And in a Moment -- guess, Oh! guess the rest!
And in a Moment swallow'd up Tom Thumb .
KING. Shut up again the Prisons, bid my Treasurer
Not give three Farthings out -- hang all the Culprits ,
Guilty or not -- no matter -- Ravish Virgins,
Go bid the Schoolmasters whip all their Boys;
Let Lawyers, Parsons, and Physicians loose,
To rob, impose on, and to kill the World.
NOODLE. Her Majesty the Queen is in a Swoon.
QUEEN. Not so much in a swoon, but I have still
Strength to reward the Messenger of ill News.
NOODLE. Oh! I am slain.
CLEORA. My Lover's kill'd, I will revenge him so.
Kills the QUEEN.
HUNCAMUNCA. My Mamma kill'd! vile Murtheress, beware.
DOODLE. This for an old Grudge, to thy Heart.
MUSTACHA. And this
I drive to thine, Oh Doodle ! for a new one.
KING. Ha! Murtheress vile, take that
140 And take thou this.
Kills himself, and falls .
So when the Child whom Nurse from Danger guards,
Sends Jack for Mustard with a Pack of Cards;
Kings, Queens and Knaves throw one another down,
'Till the whole Pack lies scatter'd and o'erthrown;
So all our Pack upon the Floor is cast,
And all I boast is -- that I fall the last.
1 Corneille recommends some very remarkable Day, wherein to fix the Action of a Tragedy. This the best of our Tragical Writers have understood to mean a Day remarkable for the Serenity of the Sky, or what we generally call a fine Summer's Day: So that according to this their Exposition, the same Months are proper for Tragedy, which are proper for Pastoral. Most of our celebrated English Tragedies, as Cato, Mariamne, Tamerlane , &c. begin with their Observations on the Morning. Lee seems to have come the nearest to this beautiful Description of our Authors;
Massinissa in the new Sophonisba is also a Favourite of the Sun;
The Morning dawns with an unwonted Crimson,
The Flowers all odorous seem, the Garden Birds
Sing louder, and the laughing Sun ascends,
The gaudy Earth with an unusual brightness,
All Nature smiles. (Caes. Borg.)
Memnon in the Persian Princess , makes the Sun decline rising, that he may not peep on Objects, which would prophane his Brightness.
-- The Sun too seems
As conscious of my Joy with broader Eye
To look abroad the World, and all things smile
-- The Morning rises slow,
And all those ruddy Streaks that us'd to paint
The Days Approach, are lost in Clouds as if
The Horrors of the Night had sent 'em back,
To warn the Sun, he should not leave the Sea,
To Peep , &c.
2 This Line is highly conformable to the beautiful Simplicity of the Antients. It hath been copied by almost every Modern,
Not to be is not to be in Woe. (State of Innocence.)
Love is not Sin but where 'tis sinful Love. (Don Sebastian.)
Nature is Nature, Laelius. (Sophonisba.)
Men are but Men, we did not make our selves. (Revenge.)
3 Dr. B------y reads the mighty Tall-mast Thumb. Mr. D------s the mighty Thumping Thumb. Mr. T------d reads Thundering. I think Thomas more agreeable to the great Simplicity so apparent in our Author.
4 That learned Historian Mr. S------n in the third Number of his Criticism on our Author, takes great Pains to explode this Passage. It is, says he, difficult to guess what Giants are here meant, unless the Giant Despair in the Pilgrim's Progress , or the Giant Greatness in the Royal Villain ; for I have heard of no other sort of Giants in the Reign of King Arthur. Petrus Burmanus makes three Tom Thumbs , one whereof he supposes to have been the same Person whom the Greeks called Hercules , and that by these Giants are to be understood the Centaurs slain by that Heroe. Another Tom Thumb he contends to have been no other than the Hermes Trismegistus of the Antients. The third Tom Thumb he places under the Reign of King Arthur , to which third Tom Thumb , says he, the Actions of the other two were attributed. Now tho' I know that this Opinion is supported by an Assertion of Justus Lipsius, Thomam illum Thumbum non alium quam Herculem fuisse satis constat ; yet shall I venture to oppose one Line of Mr. Midwinter , against them all,
In Arthur's Court Tom Thumb did live .
But then, says Dr. B------y , if we place Tom Thumb in the Court of King Arthur , it will be proper to place that Court out of Britain , where no Giants were ever heard of. Spencer , in his Fairy Queen , is of another Opinion, where describing Albion he says,
-- Far within a salvage Nation dwelt
Of hideous Giants .
And in the same Canto,
Then Elfar, who two Brethren Giants had,
The one of which had two Heads --
The other three .
Risum teneatis, Amici.
5 To whisper in Books says Mr. D------s is errant Nonsense. I am afraid this learned Man does not sufficiently understand the extensive meaning of the Word Whisper. If he had rightly understood what is meant by the Senses Whisp'ring the Soul in the Persian Princess , or what Whisp'ring like Winds is in Aurengzebe , or like Thunder in another Author, he would have understood this. Emmeline in Dryden sees a Voice, but she was born blind, which is an Excuse Panthea cannot plead in Cyrus , who hears a sight.
-- Your Description will surpass,
All Fiction, Painting, or dumb Shew of Horror,
That ever Ears yet heard, or Eyes beheld .
When Mr. D------s understands these he will understand Whisp'ring in Books.
6 -- Some Ruffian stept into his Father's Place ,
And more than half begot him. ( Mary Q. of Scots ).
7 -- For Ulamar seems sent Express from Heaven,
To civilize this rugged Indian Clime . (Liberty Asserted.)
8 Omne majus continet in se minus, sed minus non in se majus continere potest , says Scaliger in Thumbo . - I suppose he would have cavilled at these beautiful Lines in the Earl of Essex ;
-- Thy most inveterate Soul,
That looks through the foul Prison of thy Body .
And at those of Dryden,
The Palace is without too well design'd,
Conduct me in, for I will view thy Mind. (Aurengzebe.)
9 Mr. Banks hath copied this almost Verbatim,
It was enough to say, here's Essex come,
And Nurses still'd their Children with the fright. (E. of Essex .)
10 The Trumpet in a Tragedy is generally as much as to say enter King: Which makes Mr. Banks in one of his Plays call it the Trumpets's formal Sound.
11 Phraortes in the Captives seems to have been acquainted with King Arthur .
Proclaim a Festival for seven Days space,
Let the Court shine in all its Pomp and Lustre,
Let all our Streets resound with Shouts of Joy;
Let Musick's Care-dispelling Voice be heard,
The sumptuous Banquet, and the flowing Goblet
Shall warm the Cheek, and fill the Heart with Gladness.
Astarbe shall sit Mistress of the Feast .
12 Repentance frowns on thy contracted Brow . (Sophonisba.)
Hung on his clouded Brow, I mark'd Despair . (Ibid.)
-- A sullen Gloom,
Scowls on his Brow . (Busiris.)
13 Plato is of this Opinion, and so is Mr. Banks ;
Behold these Tears sprung from fresh Pain and Joy . (E. of Essex .)
14 These Floods are very frequent in the Tragick Authors.
Near to some murmuring Brook I'll lay me down,
Whose Waters if they should too shallow flow,
My Tears shall swell them up till I will drown . (Lee's Sophonisba.)
Pouring forth Tears at such a lavish Rate,
That were the World on Fire, they might have drown'd
The Wrath of Heav'n, and quench'd the mighty Ruin . (Mithridates.)
One Author changes the Waters of Grief to those of Joy,
-- These Tears that sprung from Tides of Grief,
Are now augmented to a Flood of Joy . (Cyrus the Great.)
Turns all the Streams of Hates, and makes them flow
In Pity's Channel . (Royal Villain.)
One drowns himself,
-- Pity like a Torrent pours me down,
Now I am drowning all within a Deluge . (Anna Bullen.)
Cyrus drowns the whole world,
Our swellin Grief
Shall melt into a Deluge, and the World
Shall drown in Tears. (Cyrus the Great.)
15 An Expression vastly beneath the Dignity of Tragedy, says Mr. D------s , yet we find the Word he cavils at in the Mouth of Mithridates less properly used and applied to a more terrible Idea;
I would be drunk with Death . (Mithrid.)
The Author of the New Sophonisba taketh hold of this Monosyllable, and uses it pretty much to the same purpose,
The Carthaginian Sword with Roman Blood
Was drunk .
I would ask Mr. D------s which gives him the best Idea, a drunken King, or a drunken Sword?
Mr. Tate dresses up King Arthur's Resolution in Heroicks,
Merry, my Lord, o' th' Captain's Humour right,
I am resolv'd to be dead drunk to Night .
Lee also uses this charming Word;
Love's the Drunkenness of the Mind . (Gloriana.)
16 Dryden hath borrowed this, and applied it improperly,
I'm half Seas o'er in Death . (Cleom.)
17 This Figure is in great use among the Tragedians;
'Tis therefore, therefore 'tis . (Victim.)
I long repent, repent and long again . (Busiris.)
18 A Tragical Exclamation.
19 This Line is copied verbatim in the Captives .
20We find a Candlestick for this Candle in two celebrated Authors;
-- Each Star withdraws
His golden Head and burns within the Socket. (Nero.)
A Soul grown old and sunk into the Socket . (Sebastian.)
21 This Simile occurs very frequently among the Dramatick Writers of both Kinds.
22 Mr. Lee hath stolen this Thought from our Author;
-- This perfect Face, drawn by the Gods in Council,
Which they were long a making. (Lu. Jun. Brut.)
-- At his Birth, the heavenly Council paus'd,
And then at last cry'd out, This is a Man!
Dryden hath improved this Hint to the utmost Perfection:
So perfect, that the very Gods who form'd you, wonder'd
At their own Skill, and cry'd, A lucky Hit
Has mended our Design! Their Envy hindred,
Or you had been Immortal, and a Pattern,
When Heaven would work for Ostentation sake,
To copy out again . (All for Love.)
Banks prefers the Works of Michael Angelo to that of the Gods;
A Pattern for the Gods to make a Man by,
Or Michael Angelo to form a Statue .
23 It is impossible says Mr. W------ sufficiently to admire this natural easy Line.
24 This Tragedy which in most Points resembles the Antients differs from them in this, that it assigns the same Honour to Lowness of Stature, which they did to Height. The Gods and Heroes in Homer and Virgil are continually described higher by the Head than their Followers, the contrary of which is observ'd by our Author: In short, to exceed on either side is equally admirable, and a Man of three Foot is as wonderful a sight as a Man of nine.
25 My Blood leaks fast, and the great heavy lading
My Soul will quickly sink. (Mithrid.)
My Soul is like a Ship . (Injur'd Love.)
26 This well-bred Line seems to be copied in the Persian Princess ;
To be your humblest, and most faithful Slave .
27 This Doubt of the King puts me in mind of a Passage in the Captives , where the Noise of Feet is mistaken for the Rustling of Leaves,
-- Methinks I hear
The sound of Feet
No, 'twas the Wind that shook yon Cypress Boughs.
28 Mr. Dryden seems to have had this Passage in his Eye in the first Page of Love Triumphant .
29 Don Carlos in the Revenge suns himself in the Charms of his Mistress,
While in the Lustre of her Charms I lay .
30 A tragical phrase much in use.
31 This Speech hath been taken to pieces by several Tragical Authors who seem to have rifled it and shared its Beauties among them.
My soul waits at the Portal of thy Breast,
To ravish from thy Lips the welcome News. (Anna Bullen.)
My Soul stands listening at my Ears . (Cyrus the Great.)
Love to his Tune my jarring Heart would bring,
But Reason overwinds and cracks the String. (D. of Guise.)
-- I should have lov'd,
Tho' Jove in muttering Thunder had forbid it . (New Sophonisba.)
And when it (my Heart) wild resolves to love no more,
Then is the Triumph of excessive Love . (Ibidem.)
32 Massinissa is one fourth less happy than Tom Thumb .
Oh! happy, happy, happy. (New Sophonisba.)
33 No by my self. (Anna Bullen.)
34 -- Who caus'd
This dreadful Revolution in my Fate?
Ulamar. Who but a Dog, who but a Dog? (Liberty Asserted.)
35 -- A Bride,
Who twenty Years lay loving by your side . (Banks.)
36 For born upon a Cloud, from high I'll fall,
And rain down Royal Vengeance on you all. (Albion Queens.)
37 An Information very like this we have in the Tragedy of Love , where Cyrus having stormed in the most violent manner, Cyaxares observes very calmly,
Why, Nephew Cyrus -- you are mov'd .
38 'Tis in your Choice,
Love me, or love me not! (Conquest of Granada.)
39 There is not one Beauty in this Charming Speech, but hath been borrowed by almost every Tragick Writer.
40 Mr. Banks has (I wish I could not say too servilely) imitated this of Grizzle in his Earl of Essex.
Where art thou Essex, &c.
41 The Countess of Nottingham in the Earl of Essex is apparently acquainted with Dollalolla .
42 Grizzle was not probably possessed of that Glew, of which Mr. Banks speaks in his Cyrus .
I'll glew my Ears to ev'ry word.
43 Screech-Owls, dark Ravens and amphibious Monsters,
Are screaming in that Voice . (Mary Q. of Scots.)
44 The Reader may see all the Beauties of this Speech in a late Ode called the Naval Lyrick .
45 This Epithet to a Dolphin doth not give one so clear an Idea as were to be wished, a smiling Fish seeming a little more difficult to be imagined than a flying Fish. Mr. Dryden is of Opinion, that smiling is the Property of Reason, and that no irrational Creature can smile.
Smiles not allowed to Beasts from Reason move . (State of Innocence.)
46 These Lines are written in the same Key with those in the Earl of Essex;
Why sayst thou so, I love thee well, indeed
I do, and thou shalt find by this, 'tis true.
Or with this in Cyrus;
The most heroick Mind that ever was.
And with above half of the modern Tragedies.
47 Aristotle in that excellent Work of his which is very justly stiled his Masterpiece, earnestly recommends using the Terms of Art, however coarse or even indecent they may be. Mr. Tate is of the same Opinion.
Bru. Do not, like young Hawks, fetch a Course about,
Your Game flies fair.
Fra. Do not fear it .
He answers you in your own Hawking Phrase . (Injur'd Love.)
I think these two great Authorities are sufficient to justify Dollalolla in the use of the Phrase -- Hie away hie ; when in the same Line she says she is speaking to a setting Dog.
48 We meet with such another Pair of Scales in Dryden's King Arthur .
Arthur and Oswald and their different Fates,
Are weighing now within the Scales of Heav'n
Also in Sebastian.
This Hour my Lot is weighing in the Scales .
49 Mr. Rowe is generally imagin'd to have taken some Hints from this Scene in his Character of Bajazet ; but as he, of all the Tragick Writers, bears the least Resemblance to our Author in his Diction, I am unwilling to imagine he would condescend to copy him in this particular.
50 This method of surprizing an Audience by raising their Expectation to the highest Pitch, and then baulking it, hath been practis'd with great Success by most of our Tragical Authors.
51 Almeyda in Sebastian is in the same Distress;
Sometimes methinks I hear the Groan of Ghosts,
Thin hollow Sounds and lamentable Screams;
Then, like a dying Echo from afar,
My Mother's Voice that cries, wed not Almeyda
Forewarn'd , Almeyda, Marriage is thy Crime .
52 As very well he may if he hath any Modesty in him, says Mr. D------s . The Author of Busiris , is extremely zealous to prevent the Sun's blushing at any indecent Object; and therefore on all such Occasions he addresses himself to the Sun, and desires him to keep out of the way.
Rise never more, O Sun! let Night prevail,
Eternal Darkness close the World's wide Scene . (Busiris.)
Sun hide thy Face and put the World in Mourning. (Ibid.)
Mr. Banks makes the Sun perform the Office of Hymen ; and therefore not likely to be disgusted at such a Sight;
The Sun sets forth like a gay Brideman with you . (Mary Q. of Scots.)
53 Nourmahal sends the same Message to Heaven;
For I would have you, when you upwards move,
Speak kindly of us, to our Friends above. (Aurengzebe.)
We find another to Hell, in the Persian Princess;
Villain, get thee down
To Hell, and tell them that the Fray's begun.
54 Anthony gives the same Command in the same Words.
55 Oh! Marius, Marius ; wherefore art thou Marius ? (Otway's Marius.)
56 Nothing is more common than these seeming Contradictions; such as,
Haughty Weakness. (Victim.)
Great small World . (Noah's Flood.)
57 Lee hath improv'd this Metaphor.
Dost thou not view Joy peeping from my Eyes,
The Casements open'd wide to gaze on thee;
So Rome's glad Citizens to Windows rise,
When they some young Triumpher fain would see. (Gloriana.)
58 Almahide hath the same Contempt for these Appetites;
To eat and drink can no Perfection be . (Conquest of Granada.)
The Earl of Essex is of a different Opinion, and seems to place the chief Happiness of a General therein.
Were but Commanders half so well rewarded,
Then they might eat. (Banks' Earl of Essex.)
But if we may believe one, who knows more than either, the Devil himself; we shall find Eating to be an Affair of more moment than is generally imagined.
Gods are immortal only by their Food . (Lucifer in the State of Innocence.)
59 This Expression is enough of it self (says Mr. D------s ) utterly to destroy the Character of Huncamunca ; yet we find a Woman of no abandon'd Character in Dryden , adventuring farther and thus excusing her self;
To speak our Wishes first, forbid it Pride,
forbid it Modesty: True, they forbid it,
But Nature does not, when we are athirst,
Or hungry, will imperious Nature stay,
Nor eat, nor drink, before 'tis bid fall on . (Cleomenes.)
Cassandra speaks before she is asked. Huncamunca afterwards.
Cassandra speaks her Wishes to her Lover.
Huncamunca only to her Father.
60 Her Eyes resistless Magick bear,
Angels I see, and Gods are dancing there. (Lee's Sophonisba.)
61 Mr. Dennis in that excellent Tragedy, called Liberty Asserted , which is thought to have given so great a Stroke to the late French King, hath frequent Imitations of this beautiful Speech of King Arthur;
Conquest light'ning in his Eyes, and thund'ring in his Arm.
Joy lighten'd in her Eyes.
Joys like Light'ning dart along my Soul .
62 Jove with excessive Thund'ring tir'd above,
Comes down for Ease, enjoys a Nymph, and then
Mounts dreadful, and to Thund'ring goes again. (Gloriana.)
63 This beautiful Line, which ought, says Mr. W------ to be written in Gold, is imitated in the New Sophonisba ;
Oh! Sophonisba, Sophonisba , oh!
Oh! Narva, Narva , oh!
The Author of a Song call'd Duke upon Duke, hath improv'd it.
Alas! O Nick, O Nick, alas!
Where, by the help of a little false Spelling, you have two Meanings in the repeated Words.
64 Edith , in the Bloody Brother , speaks to her Lover in the same familiar Language.
Your Grace is full of Game .
65 Traverse the glitt'ring Chambers of the Sky,
Born on a Cloud in view of Fate I'll lie,
And press her Soul while Gods stand wishing by. (Hannibal.)
66 Let the four Winds from distant Corners meet,
And on their Wings first bear it into France;
Then back again to Edina's proud Walls,
Till Victim to the Sound th' aspiring City falls. (Albion Queens.)
67 I do not remember any Metaphors so frequent in the Tragick Poets as those borrow'd from Riding Post;
The Gods and Opportunity ride Post . (Hannibal.)
-- Let's rush together,
For Death rides Post. (Duke of Guise.)
Destruction gallops to thy murther Post . (Gloriana.)
68 This Image too very often occurs;
-- Bright as when thy Eye
'First lighted up our Loves . (Aurengzebe.)
This not a Crown alone lights up my Name . (Busiris.)
69 There is great Dissension among the Poets concerning the Method of making Man. One tells his Mistress that the Mold she was made in being lost, Heaven cannot form such another. Lucifer in Dryden , gives a merry Description of his own Formation;
Whom Heaven neglecting, made and scarce design'd,
But threw me in for Number to the rest. (State of Innocence.)
In one Place, the same Poet supposes Man to be made of Metal;
I was form'd
Of that coarse Metal, which when she was made,
The Gods threw by for Rubbish. (All for Love.)
In another, of Dough;
When the Gods moulded up the Paste of Man,
Some of their Clay was left upon their Hands,
And so they made Egyptians. (Cleomenes.)
In another of Clay;
-- Rubbish of remaining Clay . (Sebastian.)
One makes the Soul of Wax;
Her waxen Soul begins to melt apace. (Anna Bullen.)
Another of Flint;
Sure our two Souls have somewhere been acquainted
In former Beings, or struck out together,
One Spark to Africk flew, and one to Portugal. (Sebastian.)
To omit the great Quantities of Iron, Brazen and Leaden Souls which are so plenty in modern Authors -- I cannot omit the Dress of a Soul as we find it in Dryden;
Souls shirted but with Air . (King Arthur.)
Nor can I pass by a particular sort of Soul in a particular sort of Description, in the New Sophonisba.
Ye mysterious Powers,
-- Whether thro' your gloomy Depths I wander,
Or on the Mountains walk; give me the calm,
The steady smiling Soul, where Wisdom sheds
Eternal Sun-shine, and eternal Joy .
70 This Line Mr. Banks has plunder'd entire in his Anna Bullen .
71 Good Heaven, the Book of Fate before me lay,
But to tear out the Journal of that Day.
Or if the Order of the World below,
Will not the Gap of one whole Day allow,
Give me that Minute when she made her Vow . (Conquest of Granada.)
72 I know some of the Commentators have imagined, that Mr. Dryden , in the Altercative Scene between Cleopatra and Octavia , a Scene which Mr. Addison inveighs against with great Bitterness, is much beholden to our Author. How just this their Observation is, I will not presume to determine.
73 A cobling Poet indeed, says Mr. D . and yet I believe we may find as monstrous Images in the Tragick-Authors: I'll put down one;
Untie your folded Thoughts, and let them dangle loose as a
Bride's Hair . (Injur'd Love.)
Which Lines seem to have as much Title to a Milliner's Shop, as our Author's to a Shoemaker's.
74 Mr. L------ takes occasion in this Place to commend the great Care of our Author to preserve the Metre of Blank Verse, in which Shakespear, Johnson and Fletcher were so notoriously negligent; and the Moderns, in Imitation of our Author, so laudably observant;
-- Then does
Your Majesty believe that he can be
A Traitor! (Earl of Essex.)
Every Page of Sophonisba gives us Instances of this Excellence.
75 Love mounts and rowls about my stormy Mind. (Aurengzebe.)
Tempests and Whirlwinds thro' my Bosom move. (Cleom.)
76 With such a furious Tempest on his Brow,
As if the World's four Winds were pent within
His blustring Carcase. (Anna Bullen.)
77 Verba Tragica.
78 This Speech hath been terribly maul'd by the Poets.
79 -- My Life is worn to Rags;
Not worth a Prince's wearing . (Love Triumph.)
80 Must I beg the Pity of my Slave?
Must a King beg! But Love's a greater King,
A Tyrant, nay a Devil that possesses me.
He tunes the Organ of my Voice and speaks,
Unknown to me, within me. (Sebastian.)
81 When thou wer't form'd, Heaven did a Man begin;
But a Brute Soul by chance was shuffled in. (Aurengzebe.)
82 -- I am a Multitude,
Of walking Griefs. (New Sophonisba.)
83 I will take thy Scorpion Blood,
And lay it to my Grief till I have Ease. (Anna Bullen.)
84 Our Author, who every where shews his great Penetration into human Nature, here outdoes himself: Where a less judicious Poet would have raised a long Scene of whining Love. He who understood the Passions better, and that so violent an Affection as this must be too big for Utterance, chooses rather to send his Characters off in this sullen and doleful manner: In which admirable Conduct he is imitated by the Author of the justly celebrated Eurydice . Dr. Young seems to point at this Violence of Passion;
-- Passion choaks
Their Words, and they're the Statues of Despair .
And Seneca tells us, Curaeleves Loquuntur, ingentes stupent . The Story of the Egyptian King in Herodotus is too well known to need to be inserted; I refer the more curious Reader to the excellent Montagne , who hath written an Essay on this Subject.
85 To part is Death --
-- 'Tis Death to part.
-- Oh. (Don Carlos.)
86 Nor know I whether,
What am I, who or where, (Busiris.)
I was I know not what, and am I know not how. (Gloriana.)
87 To understand sufficiently the Beauty of this Passage, it will be necessary that we comprehend every Man to contain two Selfs. I shall not attempt to prove this from Philosophy, which the Poets make so plainly evident.
One runs away from the other;
Let me demand your Majesty,
Why fly you from your self? (Duke of Guise.)
In a 2d. One Self is a Guardian to the other;
Leave me the Care of me . (Conquest of Granada.)
Again, My self am to my self less near . (Ibid.)
In the same, the first Self is proud of the second;
I my self am proud of me . (State of Innocence.)
In a 3d. Distrustful of him;
Fain I would tell, but whisper it in mine Ear,
That none besides might hear, nay not my self . (Earl of Essex.)
In a 4th. Honours him;
I honour Rome,
But honour too my self . (Sophonisba.)
In a 5th. At Variance with him;
Leave me not thus at Variance with my self . (Busiris.)
Again, in a 6th.
I find my self divided from my self. (Medea.)
She seemed the sad Effigies of her self. (Albion Queens.)
Assist me, Zulema, if thou would'st be
The Friend thou seemest, assist me against me .
From all which it appears, that there are two Selfs; and therefore Tom Thumb's losing himself is no such Solecism as it hath been represented by Men, rather ambitious of Criticizing, than qualify'd to Criticize.
88 Mr. F----- imagines this Parson to have been a Welsh one from his Simile.
89 Our Author hath been plunder'd here according to Custom;
Great Nature break thy Chain that links together,
The Fabrick of the World and make a Chaos,
Like that within my Soul . (Love Triumphant.)
-- Startle Nature, unfix the Globe,
And hurl it from its Axle-tree and Hinges. (Albion Queens.)
The tott'ring Earth seems sliding off its Props.
90 D------n your delay, ye Torturers proceed,
I will not hear one Word but Almahide. (Conq. of Granada.)
91 Mr. Dryden hath imitated this in All for Love .
92 This Miltonick Stile abounds in the New Sophonisba .
-- And on her ample Brow
Sat Majesty .
93 Your ev'ry Answer, still so ends in that,
You force me still to answer you Morat. (Aurengzebe.)
94 Morat, Morat, Morat, You love the Name . (Aurengzebe.)
95 Here is a Sentiment for the Virtuous Huncamunca (says Mr. D------s ) and yet with the leave of this great Man, the Virtuous Panthea in Cyrus , hath an Heart every whit as Ample;
For two I must confess are Gods to me,
Which is my Abradatus first, and thee. (Cyrus the Great.)
Nor is the Lady in Love Triumphant more reserv'd, tho' not so intelligible;
-- I am so divided,
That I grieve most for both, and love both most.
96 A ridiculous Supposition to any one, who considers the great and extensive Largeness of Hell, says a Commentator: But not so to those who consider the great Expansion of immaterial Substance. Mr. Banks makes one Soul to be so expanded that Heaven could not contain it;
The Heavens are all too narrow for her Soul . (Virtue Betray'd.)
The Persian Princess hath a Passage not unlike the Author of this;
We will send such Shoals of murther'd Slaves,
Shall glut Hell's empty Regions .
This threatens to fill Hell even tho' it were empty; Lord Grizzle only to fill up the Chinks, supposing the rest already full.
97 Mr. Addisoin is generally thought to have had this Simile in his Eye, when he wrote that beautiful one at the end of the third Act of his Cato .
98 This beautiful simile is founded on a Proverb, which does Honour to the English Language;
Between two Stools the Breech falls to the Ground.
I am not so pleased with any written Remains of the Ancients, as with those little Aphorisms, which verbal Tradition hath delivered down to us, under the Title of Proverbs. It were to be wished that instead of filling their Pages with the fabulous Theology of the Pagans, our modern Poets would think it worth their while to enrich their Works with the Proverbial Sayings of their Ancestors. Mr. Dryden hath chronicl'd one in Heroick;
Two ifs scarce make one Possibility . (Conquest of Granada.)
My Lord Bacon is of Opinion, that whatever is known of Arts and Sciences might be proved to have lurked in the Proverbs of Solomon . I am of the same Opinion in relation to those abovemention'd: At least I am confident that a more perfect System of Ethicks, as well as Oeconomy, might be compiled out of them, than is at present extant, either in the Works of the Antient Philosophers, or those more valuable, as more voluminous, ones of the modern Divines.
99 Of all the Particulars in which the modern Stage falls short of the ancient, there is none so much to be lamented, as the great Scarcity of Ghosts in the latter. Whence this proceeds, I will not presume to determine. Some are of opinion, that the Moderns are unequal to that sublime Language which a Ghost ought to speak. One says ludicrously, That Ghosts are out of Fashion; another, That they are properer for Comedy; forgetting, I suppose, that Aristotle hath told us, That a Ghost is the Soul of Tragedy; for so I render the which M. Dacier , amongst others, hath mistaken; I suppose mis-led, by not understanding the Fabula of the Latins , which signifies a Ghost as well as a Fable .
-- Te premet nox, fabulaeque Manes (Hor.)
Of all the Ghosts that have ever appeared on the Stage, a very learned and judicious foreign Critick, gives the Preference to this of our Author. These are his Words, speaking of this Tragedy;
-- Nec quidquam in illâ admirabilius quam Phasma quoddam horrendum, quod omnibus aliis Spectris, quibuscum scatet Anglorum Tragaedia, longè (pace D ------ isii V. Doctiss. dixerim) praetulerim.
100 We have already given Instances of this Figure.
101 Almanzor reasons in the same manner;
-- A Ghost I'll be,
And from a Ghost, you know, no Place is free. (Conq. of Granada.)
102 The Man who writ this wretched Pun (says (Mr. D. ) would have picked your Pocket: Which he proceeds to shew, not only bad in it self, but doubly so on so solemn an Occasion. And yet in that excellent Play of Liberty Asserted , we find something very much resembling a Pun in the Mouth of a Mistress, who is parting with the Lover she is fond of;
Ul. Oh, mortal Woe! one Kiss, and then farewel.
Irene. The Gods have given to others to fare well.
O miserably must Irene fare.
Agamemnon , in the Victim , is full as facetious on the most solemn Occasion, that of Sacrificing his Daughter;
Yes, Daughter, yes; you will assist the Priest;
Yes, you must offer up your -- Vows for Greece.
103 I'll pull thee backwards by thy Shrowd to Light,
Or else, I'll squeeze thee, like a Bladder, there,
And make thee groan thy self away to Air. (Conquest of Granada.)
Snatch me, ye Gods, this Moment into Nothing. (Cyrus the Great.)
104 So, art thou gone? Thou canst no Conquest boast,
I thought what was the Courage of a Ghost . (Conquest of Granada.)
King Arthur seems to be as brave a Fellow as Almanzor , who says most heroically,
-- In spight of Ghosts, I'll on.
105 The Ghost of Lausaria in Cyrus is a plain Copy of this, and is therefore worth reading.
Ah , Cyrus!
Thou may'st as well grasp Water, or fleet Air,
As think of touching my immortal Shade. (Cyrus the Great.)
106 Thou better Part of heavenly Air. (Conquest of Granada.)
107 A String of Similies (says one) proper to be hung up in the Cabinet of a Prince .
108 This Passage hath been understood several different Ways by the Commentators. For my part, I find it difficult to understand it at all. Mr. Dryden says,
I have heard something how two Bodies meet,
But how two Souls join, I know not.
So that 'till the Body of a Spirit be better understood, it will be difficult to understand how it is possible to run him through it.
109 Cydaria is of the same fearful Temper with Dollallolla ;
I never durst in Darkness be alone. (Ind. Emp.)
110 Think well of this, think that, think every way. (Sophonisba.)
111 These Quotations are more usual in the Comick, than in the Tragick Writers.
112 This Distress (says Mr. D------ ) I must allow to be extremely beautiful, and tends to heighten the virtuous Character of Dollallolla, who is so exceeding delicate, that she is in the highest Apprehension from the inanimate Embrace of a Bolster. An Example worthy of Imitation from all our Writers of Tragedy .
113 Credat Judaeus Apelles.
Non ego -- (Says Mr. D. ) -- For, passing over the Absurdity of being equal to Odds, can we possibly suppose a little insignificant Fellow - I say again, a little insignificant Fellow able to vie with a Strength which all the Sampsons and Hercules's of Antiquity would be unable to encounter.
I shall refer this incredulous Critick to Mr. Dryden's Defence of his Almanzor ; and lest that should not satisfy him, I shall quote a few Lines from the Speech of a much braver Fellow than Almanzor , Mr. Johnson's Achilles;
Tho' Human Race rise in embattel'd Hosts,
To force her from my Arms -- Oh! Son of Atreus!
By that immortal Pow'r, whose deathless Spirit
Informs this Earth, I will oppose them all. (Victim.)
114 I have heard of being supported by a Staff (says Mr. D. ) but never of being supported by an Helmet . I believe he never heard of Sailing with Wings, which he may read in no less a Poet than Mr. Dryden ;
Unless we borrow Wings, and sail thro' Air. (Love Triumphant.)
What will he say to a kneeling Valley?
-- I'll stand
Like a safe Valley, that low bends the Knee,
To some aspiring Mountain. (Injur'd Love.)
I am asham'd of so ignorant a Carper, who doth not know that an Epithet in Tragedy is very often no other than an Expletive. Do not we read in the New Sophonisba of grinding Chains, blue Plagues, white Occasions , and blue Serenity ? Nay, 'tis not the Adjective only, but sometimes half a Sentence is put by way of Expletive, as, Beauty pointed high with Spirit , in the same Play -- and, In the Lap of Blessing, to be most curst , in the Revenge.
115 A Victory like that of Almanzor .
Almanzor is victorious without Fight . (Conq. of Granada.)
116 Well have we chose an happy Day for Fight,
For every Man in course of Time has found,
Some Days are lucky, some unfortunate . (K. Arthur.)
117 We read of such another in Lee;
Teach his rude Wit a Flight she never made,
And sent her Post to the Elysian Shade. (Gloriana.)
118 These Lines are copied Verbatim in the Indian Emperor .
119 Unborn Thunder rolling in a Cloud. (Conq. of Gran.)
120 Were Heaven and Earth in wild Confusion hurl'd,
Should the rash Gods unhinge the rolling World,
Undaunted, would I tread the tott'ring Ball,
Crush'd, but unconquer'd, in the dreadful Fall. (Female Warrior.)
121 See the History of Tom Thumb , pag. 2.
122 -- Amazement swallows up my Sense,
And in th' impetuous Whirl of circling Fate,
Drinks down my Reason. (Pers. Princess.)
123 -- I have outfaced my self,
What! am I two? Is there another Me? (K. Arthur.)
124 The Character of Merlin is wonderful throughout, but most so in this Prophetick Part. We find several of these Prophecies in the Tragick Authors, who frequently take this Opportunity to pay a Compliment to their Country, and sometimes to their Prince. None but our Author (who seems to have detested the least Appearance of Flattery) would have past by such an Opportunity of being a Political Prophet.
125 I saw the Villain, Myron, with these Eyes I saw him . (Busiris.)
In both which Places it is intimated, that it is sometimes possible to see with other Eyes than your own.
126 This Mustard (says Mr. D. ) is enough to turn one's Stomach: I would be glad to know what Idea the Author had in his Head when he wrote it . This will be, I believe, best explained by a Line of Mr. Dennis ;
And gave him Liberty, the Salt of Life . (Liberty asserted.)
The Understanding that can digest the one, will not rise at the other.
127 Han. Are you the Chief, whom Men fam'd Scipio call?
Scip. Are you the much more famous Hannibal? (Hannib.)
128 Dr. Young seems to have copied this Engagement in his Busiris :
129 This last Speech of my Lord Grizzle , hath been of great Service to our Poets;
-- I'll hold it fast
As Life, and when Life's gone, I'll hold this last;
And if thou tak'st it from me when I'm slain,
I'll send my Ghost, and fetch it back again . (Conquest of Granada.)
130 My Soul should with such Speed obey,
It should not bait at Heaven to stop its way .
Lee seems to have had this last in his Eye;
'Twas not my Purpose, Sir, to tarry there,
I would but go to Heaven to take the Air . (Gloriana.)
131 A rising Vapour rumbling in my Brains . (Cleomenes.)
132 Some kind Spright knocks softly at my Soul,
To tell me Fate's at Hand .
133 Mr. Dryden seems to have had this Simile in his Eye, when he says,
My Soul is packing up, and just on Wing . (Conquest of Granada.)
134 And in a purple Vomit pour'd his Soul. (Cleomenes.)
135 The Devil swallows vulgar Souls
Like whipp'd Cream . (Sebastian.)
136 How I could curse my Name of Ptolemy!
It is so long, it asks an Hour to write it.
By Heav'n! I'll change it into Jove, or Mars,
Or any other civil Monosyllable,
That will not tire my Hand . (Cleomenes.)
137 Here is a visible Conjunction of two Days in one, by which our Author may have either intended an Emblem of a Wedding; or to insinuate, that Men in the Honey-Moon are apt to imagine time shorter than it is. It brings into my Mind a Passage in the Comedy call'd the Coffee-House Politician ;
We will celebrate this Day at my House To-morrow .
138 These beautiful Phrases are all to be found in one single Speech of King Arthur , or The British Worthy .
139 I was but teaching him to grace his Tale
With decent Horror . (Cleomenes.)
140 We may say with Dryden,
Death did at length so many Slain forget,
And left the Tale, and took them by the Great .
I know of no Tragedy which comes nearer to this charming and bloody Catastrophe, than Cleomenes , where the Curtain covers five principal Characters dead on the Stage. These Lines too,
I ask no Questions then, of Who kill'd Who?
The Bodies tell the Story as they lie.
seem to have belonged more properly to this Scene of our Author. -- Nor can I help imagining they were originally his. The Rival Ladies too seem beholden to this Scene;
We're now a Chain of Lovers link'd in Death,
Julia goes first , Gonsalvo hangs on her,
And Angelina hangs upon Gonsalvo,
As I on Angelina.
No Scene, I believe, ever received greater Honours than this. It was applauded by several Encores , a Word very unusual in Tragedy -- And it was very difficult for the Actors to escape without a second Slaughter. This I take to be a lively Assurance of that fierce Spirit of Liberty which remains among us, and which Mr. Dryden in his Essay on Dramatick Poetry hath observed -- Whether Custom (says he) hath so insinuated it self into our Countrymen, or Nature hath so formed them to Fierceness, I know not, but they will scarcely suffer Combats, and other Objects of Horror, to be taken from them . -- And indeed I am for having them encouraged in this Martial Disposition: Nor do I believe our Victories over the French have been owing to any thing more than to those bloody Spectacles daily exhibited in our Tragedies, of which the French Stage is so entirely clear.
Next: Sonnet XXIII, by Fulke Greville