My hapless bridegroom on his wedding-day,
I, who this mom of two chose which to wed,
May go again this night alone to bed.
|98So have I seen some wild unsettled fool,||60|
To give the preference to either loth,
And fondly coveting to sit on both,
While the two stools her sitting-part confound,
|Between 'em both fall squat upon the ground.||65|
KING ARTHUR'S palace.
99GHOST (solus). Hail! ye black horrors of mid-
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 phantoms, who, by day,||5|
Are some condemned to fast, some feast in fire, Now play in churchyards, skipping o'er the graves, To the 100loud music of the silent bell, All hail!
KING and GHOST.
KING. What noise is this? What villain dares,
At this dread hour, with feet and voice profane,
Disturb our royal walls?
GHOST. One who defies
Thy empty power to hurt him; 101one who dares
Walk in thy bedchamber.
|KING. Presumptuous slave!||5|
GHOST. Threaten others with that word:
102I am a ghost, and am already dead.
KING. Ye stars! 'tis well. Were thy last hour to
This moment had been it; 103yet by thy shroud
|I'll pull thee backward, squeeze thee to a bladder,||10|
104I 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||15|
As sure, sure as a gun, I'll have thee laid --
GHOST. Were the Red Sea a sea of Holland's
-- A ghost I'll be;
And from a ghost, you know, no place is free.
Conq[uest] of Granada [ DRYDEN].
Ul. Oh, mortal woe! one kiss, and then farewell.
Irene. The gods have given to others to fare well.
O! miserably must Irene fare.
Agamemnon, in the Victim [ JOHNSON), 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.
Conquest of Granada [DRYDEN].
Snatch me, ye gods, this moment into nothing.
Cyrus Ike Great [ BANKS].
Conquest of Granada [ DRYDEN].
King Arthur seems to be as brave a fellow as Almanzor, who says most heroically,
In spite of ghosts I'll on.
Between two stools the breech falls to the ground. I am not so well 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 chronicled one in heroic:
Two ifs scarce make one possibility.
Conquest of Granada [ DRYDEN].
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 above mentioned; at least I am confident that a more perfect system of ethics, as well as economy, might be compiled out of them than is at present extant, either in the works of the ancient philosophers, or those more valuable, as more voluminous ones of the modern divines.
-- Nor quidquam in illâ admirabilius quàm phasma quoddam horrendum, quod omnibus aliis spectris, quibuscum scalet Angelorum tragœdia, longè (pace D--ysii V. Doctiss. dixerim) prætulerim. ['Nor is there in that tragedy anything more admirable than a certain horrifying ghost which I should far prefer to all other ghosts in which English tragedy abounds -- speaking with due respect to the most learned man Dionysius.' (? Dennis)]