The Inflexible Captive Part 15

The Inflexible Captive -

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_Lic._ Lay down your arms--let Regulus depart.

[_To the People, who clear the way, and quit their arms._

_Reg._ G.o.ds! G.o.ds! I thank you--you indeed are righteous.

_Pub._ See every man disarm'd. Oh, Rome! oh, father!

_At._ Hold, hold my heart. Alas! they all obey.

_Reg._ The way is clear. Hamilcar, I attend thee.

_Ham._ Why, I begin to envy this old man! [_Aside._

_Man._ Not the proud victor on the day of triumph, Warm from the slaughter of dispeopled realms, Though conquer'd princes grace his chariot wheels, Though tributary monarchs wait his nod, And vanquish'd nations bend the knee before him, E'er shone with half the l.u.s.tre that surrounds This voluntary sacrifice for Rome!

Who loves his country will obey her laws; Who most obeys them is the truest patriot.

_Reg._ Be our last parting worthy of ourselves.

Farewell! my friends.--I bless the G.o.ds who rule us, Since I must leave you, that I leave you Romans.

Preserve the glorious name untainted still, And you shall be the rulers of the globe, The arbiters of earth. The farthest east, Beyond where Ganges rolls his rapid flood, Shall proudly emulate the Roman name.

(_Kneels._) Ye G.o.ds, the guardians of this glorious people, Who watch with jealous eye aeneas' race, This land of heroes I commit to you!

This ground, these walls, this people be your care!

Oh! bless them, bless them with a liberal hand!

Let fort.i.tude and valour, truth and justice, For ever flourish and increase among them!

And if some baneful planet threat the Capitol With its malignant influence, oh, avert it!-- Be Regulus the victim of your wrath.-- On this white head be all your vengeance pour'd, But spare, oh, spare, and bless immortal Rome!

Ah! tears? my Romans weep? Farewell! farewell!

ATTILIA _struggles to get to_ REGULUS--_is prevented--she faints--he fixes his eye steadily on her for some time, and then departs to the s.h.i.+ps_.

_Man._ (_looking after him._) Farewell! farewell! thou glory of mankind!

Protector, father, saviour of thy country!

Through Regulus the Roman name shall live, Shall triumph over time, and mock oblivion.

Farewell! thou pride of this immortal coast!

'Tis Rome alone a Regulus can boast.




What son of physic, but his art extends, As well as hand, when call'd on by his friends?

What landlord is so weak to make you fast, When guests like you bespeak a good repast?

But weaker still were he whom fate has plac'd To soothe your cares, and gratify your taste, Should he neglect to bring before your eyes Those dainty dramas which from genius rise; Whether your luxury be to smile or weep, His and your profits just proportion keep.

To-night he brought, nor fears a due reward, A Roman Patriot by a Female Bard.

Britons who feel his flame, his worth will rate, No common spirit his, no common fate.

INFLEXIBLE and CAPTIVE must be great.

"How!" cries a sucking fop, thus lounging, straddling (Whose head shows want of ballast by its nodding), "A woman write? Learn, Madam, of your betters, And read a n.o.ble Lord's Post-hu-mous Letters.

There you will learn the s.e.x may merit praise By making puddings--not by making plays: They can make tea and mischief, dance and sing; Their heads, though full of feathers, can't take wing."

I thought they could, Sir; now and then by chance, Maids fly to Scotland, and some wives to France.

He still went nodding on--"Do all she can, Woman's a trifle--play-thing--like her fan."

Right, Sir, and when a wife the _rattle_ of a man.

And shall such _things_ as these become the test Of female worth? the fairest and the best Of all heaven's creatures? for so Milton sung us, And, with such champions, who shall dare to wrong us?

Come forth, proud man, in all your pow'rs array'd; s.h.i.+ne out in all your splendour--Who's afraid?

Who on French wit has made a glorious war, Defended Shakspeare, and subdu'd Voltaire?-- Woman![A]--Who, rich in knowledge, knows no pride, Can boast ten tongues, and yet not satisfied?

Woman![B]--Who lately sung the sweetest lay?

A woman! woman! woman![C] still I say.

Well, then, who dares deny our power and might?

Will any married man dispute our right?

Speak boldly, Sirs,--your wives are not in sight.

What! are you silent? then you are content; Silence, the proverb tells us, gives consent.

Critics, will you allow our honest claim?

Are you dumb, too? This night has fix'd our fame.


A: Mrs. Montague, Author of an Essay on the Writings of Shakspeare.

B: Mrs. Carter, well known for her skill in ancient and modern languages.

C: Miss Aikin, whose Poems were just published.

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The Inflexible Captive Part 15 summary

You're reading The Inflexible Captive. This manga has been translated by Updating. Author(s): Hannah More. Already has 191 views.

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