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Unheard, condemn, and suffer me to go
Almah. Be't love or jealousy, 'tis such a crime, That I'm forewarned to trust a second time. Know, then, my prayers to heaven shall never cease, To crown your arms in war, your wars with peace; But from this day I will not know your bed: Though Almahide still lives, your wife is dead; And with her dies a love so pure and true, It could be killed by nothing but by you.
Exit ALMAH. Boab. Yes; you will spend your life in prayers
for me, And yet this hour my hated rival see. She might a husband's jealousy forgive; But she will only for Almanzor live. It is resolved; I will myself provide That vengeance, which my useless laws denied; And, by Almanzor's death, at once remove The rival of my empire, and my love. [Exit BOAB. Enter AlMAHIDE, led by ALMANZOR, and followed
by ESPERANZA; she speaks, entering. Almah. How much, Almanzor, to your aid I owe, Unable to repay, I blush to know; Yet, forced by need, ere I can clear that score, I, like ill debtors, come to borrow more. Almanz. Your new commands I on my knees at
tend: I was created for no other end. Born to be yours, I do by nature serve, And, like the labouring beast, no thanks deserve. ;
Almah. Yet first your virtue to your succour call, For in this hard command you'll need it all.
Almanz. I stand prepared ; and whatsoe'er it be, Nothing is hard to him, who loves like me. Almah. Then know, I from your love must yet
implore One proof:—that you would never see me more. Almanz. I must confess,
[Starting back: For this last stroke I did no guard provide; I could suspect no foe was near that side. From winds and thickening clouds we thunder fear, None dread it from that quarter which is clear; And I would fain believe, 'tis but your art To shew You knew where deepest you could wound my
heart. Almah. So much respect is to your passion due, That sure I could not practise arts on you. But that you may not doubt what I have said, This hour I have renounced my husband's bed: Judge, then, how much my fame would injured be, If, leaving him, I should a lover see. Almanz. If his unkindness have deserved that
curse, Must I, for loving well, be punished worse?
Almah. Neither your love nor merits I compare, But my unspotted name must be my care.
Almanz. I have this day established its renown.
stand, Yet you contemn my absolute command.
Almanz. 'Tis not contempt, When your command is issued out too late: "Tis past my power, and all beyond is fate.
I scarce could leave you, when to exile sent,
blow: I am quite stunned, and past all feeling now. Yet - can you tell me you have power and will To save my life, and at that instant kill? Almah. This, had you staid, you never must have
known; But, now you go, I may with honour own.
Almans. But, madam, I am forced to disobey: In your defence my honour bids me stay. I promised to secure your life and throne, And, heaven be thanked, that work is yet undone. Almah. I here make void that promise which you
made, For now I have no farther need of aid.. That vow, which to my plighted lord was given, I must not break, but may trarsfer to heaven: I will with vestals live: There needs no guard at a religious door;. Few will disturb the praying and the poor. : Almanz. Let me but near that happy temple stay, And through the grates peep on you once a day; To famished hope I would no banquet give: I cannot starve, and wish but just to live. . Thus, as a drowning man
Sinks often, and does still more faintly rise,
BOABDELIN, and Guards above.
[Catches her hand, and kisses iti Boab. My just revenge no longer I'll forbear: I've seen too much; I need not stay to hear.
[Descends. Almanz. As a small shower To the parched earth does some refreshment give, So, in the strength of this, one day I'll live: A day, a year, — an age, -for ever, now;
[Betwixt each word he kisses her hand by force ;
she struggling | I feel from every touch a new soul flow.
[She snatches her hand away. My hoped eternity of joy is past! 'Twas insupportable, and could not last. Were heaven not made of less, or duller joy, 'Twould break each minute, and itself destroy.
Enter King and Guards, below. Boab. This, this, is he, for whom thou didst deny To share my bed :- Let them together die.
Almah. Hear me, my lord.
Boab. Your flattering arts are vain: Make haste, and execute what I ordain. V
[To the Guards.
les some day., novi force ;
Almanz. Cut piece-meal in this cause,
[He puts himself before the Queen; the Guards
attack him, with the King.
[To the King. Has arm'd your left hand, to cut off your right?
[The King turns, the fight ceases. The foes are entered at the Elvira gate: False Lyndaraxa has the town betrayed, And all the Zegrys give the Spaniards aid.
Boab. O mischief, not suspected nor foreseen!
Abdelm. Already they have gained the Zacatin,
Almah. Now, brave Almanzor, be a god again;
above, Take rules of virtue from a mortal love! You've raised my soul; and if it mount more high, "Tis as the wren did on the eagle fly. Yes, I once more will my revenge neglect, And, whom you can forgive, I can protect.