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GLADIATOR.





SEER'S Engraving and Printing Establishment, 26 Union Square, N. Y.









Ss&Eafew?*' '':>:' vV ,



CSE&EBRATKB

HEW YORK



L74 5th AVE., bet. 22d and 23d Sts.,
179 BROADWAY, near Cortlandt St., N. Y.

IMOU&E, CHICAGO.



CORRECT STYLES, EXTRA QUALITY.
HATS in SILK, SATIN and MERINO,

Ladies' Hiding and Walking Hats,
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THE GLADIATOR:



A TRAGEDY IN 5 ACTS,



BY A. SAUMET,



AS PERFORMED BY




UNDER THE MANAGEMENT OF



MB. JOHN STETSON



NEW YORK:

A. S. Sti-ER'S Engraving and Printing Establishment,
28 Union Square.

1880,



DRAMATIS PERSONS.



THE GLADIATOR.
ORIGEN.
FLAVIAN.
PRIEST OF JUNO,

"



A NEOPHYTE.

FAUSTINA.

NEODAM1A,



THE GLADIATOE.



ABGUMENT.

THE motive of this play is the tyranny of the wealthier and par-
trician classes of old Rome ; the grinding oppression under which the
humbler citizens lived ; licentiousness, superstition, and cruelty which
characterized the whole people, and the general atmosphere of hate
and revenge that pervaded society. The Christians are introduced to
heighten the picture, and a young Christian convert is the victim of
the play.

The GLADIATOR is a slave, whose wife has been atrociously murdered
by the Empress mother, FAUSTINA. He escapes with his infant
daughter. The child is lost. He returns to Borne and visits ORIGEN,
a Christian, who lives in the Catacombs. To him he tells the history
of his wrongs, and announces an intended revolt of slaves. The
Empress, with a guard of Lictors, coines to the Catacombs in search of
NEODAMIA, a beautiful girl beloved by FLAVIAN, to whom the Empress
is herself passionately attached. She misses NEODAMIA, but meets the
GLADIATOR. A recognition takes place. The lost daughter's life is
bound up by an oracle with that of the young Emperor. The Em-
press, who has the maternal devotion of a tigress to its cubs, promises
reward to the GLADIATOR if he can find his child. Meanwhile she
orders him to accompany her to FLAVIAN'S palace, where NEODAMIA
resides. She orders the GLADIATOR to murder the girl, which he re-
fuses to do.

By FAUSTINA'S machinations the marriage of FLAVIAN and NEODAMIA
is interrupted. ORIGEN, the Christian, is arrested at the temple of
Juno, and NEODAMIA, in a fit of enthusiasm, proclaims her own
Christianity. Both are thrown into prison, and sentenced to death in
the arena. The GLADIATOR, who has been held as a runaway slave, is-
appointed executioner of NEODAMIA. In the Arena he recognizes her
as his lost child. He vainly appeals to the people's mercy. FAUSTINA,,
horrified at her son's danger, involved in the girl's approaching death,
adjourns the games, and determines to rescue NEODAMIA, and thereby
to ward off peril from her son. NEODAMIA and the GLADIATOR are on
the point of making their escape under FAUSTINA'S protection, when a
riot takes place ; the Imperial palaee is sacked, the Emperor is slain,
and the people, under the guidance of the fanatic Priest of Juno, burst
into the prison cells of the Amphitheatre. At this supreme moment,
to save his daughter from outrage, the GLADIATOR kills her with his
own hand.

Thus the iniquities of the rulers recoil on themselves; and the
martyrdom of NEODAMIA gives occasion for the conversion of her father
and lover, and for the prophetic denunciation of slavery as a curs*
upon the nations, to be wiped out in the fulness of time.






4



ATTO PEIMO.

SCENA PEIMA.

II Teatro rappresenta le Catacombe di Roma; sul davanti della

scena una tavolo di pietra eon sopra un gran libro aperto ed un

teschio ; nelfondo lampade access.

OBIGENE

Seduto sopra un banco di pietra.
OEIG. O catacombe, o tempio, unico asilo
Dove puo respirar liberamente
L' uomo, oppresso dal giogo empio di Eoma ;
Di questa Eoma che invecchio nel fiele
Delle discordie sue, che gia lo spirto
Onde vivono i popoli, dai fianchi
Lassi e rotti esalava. . . . O catacombe,
Eaddoppiate le tenebre, la pugna
E cominciata, 1' awenir del mondo
Tutto e raccolto in un pensiero, e incerta
La vittoria non e\ Tiranni e schiavi,
A pie* dei grandi un popolo gravato
Di funeree gramaglie e di catene,
Pianti, follia, miseria, e fra tre mila
Iddii, non uno sol per la sventura ....
Ecco, o Eoma il tuo mondo, ecco il tuo Cielo!
Ma il Dio, nostro si leva, e spande il raggio
Del lume suo, sulla famiglia umana;
Egli che 1' aura sepolcral iS viva
Con la sua fiamma, ei fe per gli occhi il sole,
La liberta per 1' anima. Si, Cristo,
Questo fraterno -Cristo, che nascda
Sovra la paglia d' un presepe. uscito
Dalle stirpi del volgo, e nondimeno
Figlio all' Onnipotente. In nome suo
Noi combattiamo un secolo di colpe.
Le prigioni dei martiri son piene,
La mannaja crudel si spunta invano
Eaddoppiando i suoi colpi, ahi! qui si more.
Da tutte parti. ciel, quando f ia raso
Da la faccia del mondo il vitupero,
Chel'uom. . . . che 1' uomo sia signer dell' uomo ?



ACT I.

SCENE I.

The Catacombs of Rome. A table of stone, with a, large open book
and a skull.

OBIGEN.

OBI. 0, Catacombs ! 0, temple ! sole asylum

Wherein can freely breathe,
Man, oppressed by the cruel yoke of Rome
That Rome which grows old in bitter
Strife and discord ; whose spirit,
That once kept whole the people, now from
Her worn out body dies away % O, Catacombs !
Be your gloom redoubled, the fight
Begins the future of the world
Is concentrated in one thought, nor doubtful
Is the victory. Tyrants and slaves !
At the great man's foot a people laden
With funereal clothes and chains ;
Groans, madness, misery; and of three thousand
Gods, not a single one for the crisis !
Behold thy world, Rome ! behold thy heaven !
But our god has risen, and sheds the ray
Of his light upon his human family.
He whom the entombed spirit makes alive
With its breath, for our eyes can make a sun
And freedom for the soul. Yes ! Christ,
Our brother, Christ who was born
On straw, in a manger, sprung
From the common people but not therefore less
Son to the Omnipotent. In His name
We have fought against a century of blows.
The prisons are with martyrs filled,
The greedy axe gets blunt, in vain
Redoubling its strokes. Alas ! we die
On all sides. O, heaven, when shall be erased
Prom the world's face the scandal,
" That man can be man's master? "
When ? Perchance now, perchance in a thousand years.
The sacred tree whose genial foliage



6



Quando ? . . . . forse diman .... forse a mill' anni

L' albero sacro che dell' ombra sua

Fa dolce ogni dolor, non avra forse

Da molto tempo dispiegati all' aura

Tutti i suoi rami, e finalmente all' ombra

Fecondatrice, brillera matura

La liberta del mondo.



SCENA SECONDA.
II NEOFITO ed OBIGENE.

NEO. Alctini schiavi

Cercan di voi.

OBI. Lor protettor io sono.

NEO. Ve li conduce il Gladiator che tanto

Delle vittorie sue parlar fe Eoma,

E n' era lungi or da tre lustri.
OBI. Incontro

Lor movero. Miseri schiavi ! Avranno

Sempre un fratello in Origene. Ad essi

Poi parlero ; la sconosciuta donna

M' introduci frattanto. (Neofito parted) Alcun segreto

Di rivelarmi avra mestier, se viene

Fra le tenebre nostre.



SCENA TERZA.
NEODEMIA e NEOFITO.

NEOD. (II cor mi trema !)

OBI. Voi piangete, mia figlia ! E che ? La voce

Del dolor giunge a noi, debol che sia.
NEOD. E la vostra consola.
OBI. II nostro Iddio

Ci dona alcuna volta il suo linguaggio.
NEOD. Una di vostre suore avria voluto

Sola gittarsi a' vostri piedi.
OBI. Ebbene,

Chi la potrebbe ratteuer?
NEOD. La tema. . . .

E . . . . ci perdoni Iddio .... forse il rimorso

Delia nova sua gioi;i ....



Soothes every pain, will not perhaps
For long ages have spread out
All its branches ; but finally in its
Favoring shelter shall rise matured
The liberty of the world.



SCENE II.
NEOPHYTE and OKIGEN.

NEO. Some slaves

Are seeking you.
OBI. I am their protector.

NEO. Their guide is that Gladiator, of whose

Victories all Rome used to talk;

He has not here been seen these fifteen years.
OKI. I will move

Towards them. "Wretched slaves. They shall

Ever have a brother in Origen to them

I will speak. The unknown lady

Introduce meanwhile. Some secret

To be revealed, has brought her, as she comes

Into our hiding-place. [Exit Neo.



SCENE III.

Enter NEODAMIA and NEOPHYTE.

NEOD. My heart trembles.

OBI. You are in grief, daughter. Wherefore ? The cry

Of sorrow reaches to us, weak though we be.
NEOD. And do you console?
OKI. Our God

Doth sometimes vouchsafe his healing words by us.
NEOD. One of your sisters seeks

To throw herself at your feet.
OKI. Well,

What shall prevent her?
NEOD. Fear,

And ah, pardon, lord perhaps remorse

At her new-found joy



8



OBI. Ella 6 . . . .?

NKOD. Cristiana.

OBI. Fatemi dunque voi la confidenza

Di quella timorosa anima, ed io
V ascolterd.

NEOD. Indovinate, o padre,

La sua preghierq,. Schiava nata, ignora
Suo paese e parenti, e dove ch' ella
Volgesse il pie, sarebbe in sulla terra
Una straniera, un orfana, se Cristo
Non 1'avesse raccolta in sua famiglia,
Nella divina sua magion.

OBI. Or dunque ?

NEOD. Fino ad oggi il suo cor libero e puro

Fu d'altri amor; ma un giovane Eomano
Che pur da lei diviso eternamente
Parea pel grado della vita, il guardo
Tenero e fiero decline) sul volto
De la donzella.

OBI. (Turbandosi.) Or come.

NEOD. (Sollecita e con enfasi.) Onor le fece
E non oltraggio, rispettando appieno
La sua gelosa dignita. Signore
Di questa schiava, disposar la vuole,
Ma .... Cristiano ei . . . . non e.

OBI. Sa di qual fedo

Sia la sua schiava ?

NEOD. Ei solo in Eoma.

OBI. Ed ella

Nel suo novo legame, al nostro culto
Si rimarra f edele ?

NEOD. (Con espansione.) Oh ! sempre, sempre !

OBI. II vostro sguardo me ne fa sicuro.

Adunque riportatele, da parte
D' un sacerdote del Signor, siccome
Accoglier pud senza periglio alcuno
La sua fortuna. Ognor soccorritrica
Nostra religione, anco severa
Talvolta ell' 6, ma inesorabil mai.
Ne Dio s'irrita degli onesti amori
Mia figlia, andate in pace.

(Oh! 1'ineffabile

Pensiero ! O Flaviano, esser felice
E senza colpa?) (Parte.)



OBI. She is

NEOD. A Christian !

OKI. Give me then, yourself the confession

Of that trembling soul; and I
Will hear it.
NEOD. You divine, oh father,

Her request ! A slave by birth, unknown
Her country or kindred, wherever she
May turn her feet, she must always have been
A stranger and an orphan, if Christ
Had not received her into His family,
Into His divine mansion.
ORI. Proceed.

NEOD. Until to-day, her heart was free and pure
Of other loves; but a Eoman youth,
Who yet eternally separated from her,
Appears by rank in life ; a
Proud and tender look has turned upon the face
Of that young girl.
ORI. (Agitated.) And how ?

NEOD. (Earnestly.) All in honour,

Not in insult ; respective fully
Of her jealous dignity. Master
Of that slave, he seeks to marry her ;
But .... a Christian .... he is not.
ORI. Knows he of what faith

His slave is ?

NEOD. He alone in Rome
ORI. And she,

In her new ties, will she to our worship
Hold faithful?

NEOD. (Eagerly.) Always! always!
OKI. Your looks assure me of it ;

Then take her back this word
From a priest of the Lord ;
She may, without any peril
Accept her good fortune. Ever a present help
Is our religion ; severe she
Sometimes may be, inexorable never.
God is not angry at our honest loves.
Daughter, go in peace.
NEOD. (0, the ineffable thought !
Flavian, to be happy
And without sin !) [Exit.



10

SCENA QUARTA.
II GLADIATOBE e SCHIAVI.

OKI. (Al Neofito.} Vengano gli schiavi !

GLA. Questo e il palagio vostro ? (Guarda intorno meravigliando)

(e con soddisfazione.) E tanto meglio !

Qui niuna pompa offendera la luce

Degli occhi nostri. Amici miei, restate

Sotto quegli archi sepolcrali. E pieno

Abbastanza il mio cor dell' ire vostre.

Per tutti, io solo parlerd. Per Dio !

Non sentii mai tanto bisogno al mondo

Di versar tauta bile !

OKI. Oh ! vi calmate.

GLA. S' io mento, mi sprofondino gli Del !

Che vuoi ? Questi miei sensi a tin batter d' occhi

Se ne volano in fiamme. Io tante volte

Co' 1'ioni pugnai che il rugghio loro

Mi passo nella voce. Perdonate,

Signor mio, perdonate. II nome mio

Esser noto vi dee. Negro mi chiamo ;

In Tracia nacqui ; ma piu bello e grande J

E il mio nome di schiavo : in Roma io sono

II Gladiator.
OBI. Fra noi vi sara dato

Un nome tal che a tutti io preferisco,

E innanzi a Dio piu sacro.
GLA. E qual ?

OBI. Fratello :

GLA. I Cristiani ci chiamano fratelli ?

Dunque i Cristiani .... tutti schiavi anch' essi?
OBI. No, fratello ; quei ferri che 1' orgoglio

E il delitto invento, caddero infranti

Al grido della vittima divina.

L' uomo, schiavo dell' uomo ? Oh ciel ! per quale

Mostruosa congiura ? A Dio medesmo

Schiavo 1' uomo non 6". Dio ch' equilibra

II mondo ch' ei cred, permise il male,

Perche 1' uom fosse libero. Cotanto

Agli occhi suoi f olgord bello il dono

Di questa liberta sola per cui

L' anima nostra s' awicina a Dio.
GLA. Ecco, questo e parlar! Grande ! Mi piace

La tua dottrina. . . . Io 1' amo, e sento il petto



11

SCENE IV.
GLADIATOB and Slaves.

OBI. to NEOPH. Admit the slaves.

GLA. (Looking around.} Is this your palace ? So much the

better !

Here no pomp offends the light

Of our eyes. My friends, remain

In these sepulchral caves. My heart

Is full already of your grievances

For all I speak alone. By the gods !

Never have I felt so great a need

Of pouring out my wrath !
OBI. Be calm !

GLA. If I lie, may the gods overwhelm me

See here these senses of mine, at a mere wink,

Fly up in flames. So often

Have I fought the lions, that their roar

Has got into my voice. Excuse me,

Master, excuse me. My name

May be known to you. I am Niger ;1

I was born in Thrace; but greater and finer far

Is my slave name ; in Eome I am

The Gladiator.
OBI. Among us you will bear

A name that I prefer to any,

And most sacred before God.
GLA. What is that?
OBI. Brother.

GLA. The Christians call us brothers?

Then are all the Christians slaves like us ?
OBI. No, brother; those fetters which pride

And cruelty invented, fell to pieces

At the cry of the divine victim.

Man the slave of man ? oh, heaven, what

Monstrous compact ! To God himself

Man is not a slave. God, who keeps the balance

Of the world He made, permits evil,

So that man may be free. So glorious.

In His eyes is that great boon

Of liberty, that by it alone

Our souls draw nigh to God.
GLA. Ha ! . this is talking ! Grand ! I like

Thy doctrine I love it, and I feel my breast



12



Allagarinisi tutto, e le vital!

Aure bere a torrent! ! Grazie, o padre,

Del beneficio. Sdebitarmi io voglio ....

Si, si, fratello. II mio ritorno in Roma

S' ignora tuttavia. Non sono usato

D' aggiornare i perigli. Ho degli amici

Stanchi omai di servir ; tutti ban giurato

Far la vendetta dei patiti oltraggi.

I nostri ferri deporremo insieme

Sulla tomba di Boma. Uguali tutti,

Oppress! tutti, equipariam le fronti

Al taglio della scure. O tu, non sai,

Cbe scannar vi si debbe al novo giorno ?

Che voi notar nel proprio sangue, al paii

Di noi, veder si vuole, e come noi

Bene spirando rallegrar 1' arena ?

Divulgato e 1' editto.
OBI. Io non 1' ignore.

GLA. Dell' odio tuo m' aiuta. Alia congiura

II tuo consiglio, il tuo gran nome, il braccio

De' tuoi Cristiani ci sara sostegno. Noi pronti siamo

E pronti tutti !
OBI. Altr' arme

Abbiamo noi, che piu sicuro all' alma

Danno il trionfo.

GLA. E son?

OBI. Preghiera e pianto !

GLA. Non li conosco. A vendicar gli antichi

Nostri dolori non ci basta il sangue,

E tu m' offri le lagrime ?
OBI. Ah ! se d' uopo

Vi fia di sangue; o voi da un pie di bronzo

Schiacciati al suolo, rimirate il saugue

D' un Dio, che gronda dalla Croce.
GLA. Ei faccia

Nostre vendette, e ad adorarlo io volo.
OBI. Fratel ! Colui che questo nume adora,

Ogni vendetta obblia.
GLA. Cheparli! E i nostri

Orribili tormenti ? . . . .
OBI. Essi che fanno

A chi li guarda con secure aspetto ?
GLA. Ah! ma tu dunque non m' intend!, o prete.

Uno schiavo son' io, privo di tetto,



13



Expand, and all my vitals

Drink in air by torrents ! Thanks, father,

For thy kindness. I will pay it back

Yes, yes ! brother. My return to Borne

Is not yet known ; I am not wont

To stave off danger I have staunch friends

Just now to serve ; all have sworn

To be revenged for outrage suffered.

We will all lay down our chains together,

Upon the tomb of Rome. All equals,

All oppressed, we offer our heads

To the edge of the sword. You don't know

What it is, to be obliged to cut throats every day ;

What it is to swim in your own blood,

When they please to see it ; or like us,

To amuse the Arena with our dying breath.

The edict is gone forth.

OBI. I know it all.

GLA. Help us with your hate. Aid the plot

With your counsel your great name, and the arm
Of your Christians will be a help to us.
We are ready all ready.

OKI. Other arms

Are ours ; which make a surer triumph
To the soul.

GLA. What are they ?

OBI. Prayer and supplication !

GLA. Don't know them. To avenge our long tried

Grievances, there is not blood enough ;
And thou offerest tears ?

OBI. As if there were need

Of blood ; you, by the brazen foot
Downtrodden, look upon the blood
Of God, which drops from the Cross.

GLA. Let Him

Fulfil our vengeance, and I will worship Him.

OBI. Brother ! who worships this, our God,

Forgoes all vengeance.

GLA. What say you ? Our

Horrible torments. . . .

OBI. And what are they to men

Who look upon them with calm aspect ?

GLA. Ah ! but thou hast not understood me, priest :

I am a slave, without a home,



14



Di famiglia, di patria, umiliato,

Proscritto, errante, e viepiu vil d'un cane

Legato alia catena ; il qual costretto

In angolo remote, il pasto morde

Con lo scudiscio che lo batte, e invano

Binghiando esala il suo furor. L'impronta

M' han dell' infamia sugellata in fronte,

Non alle braccia, o al pie .... qui, sulla fronte,

Perche lo stigma del padrone, agli occhi

Di tutto il mondo, in me facesse abbietto

Li' essere umano quanto puossi. Oh quanto

Tesoro d' odio accumulate in seno !

Oh quai grida anelanti alia vendetta !

H mio destin, 1' anfiteatro, e Koma,

lo maledico eternamente, e insulto

Battendo il pie, questa madrigna terra

Che germino le mie catene ! Insulto

E maledico il Sol che in ogni riva

Spande la luce sua per far piu grave

L'etera del servaggio. Ai nostri Numi,

Altri tiranni ch 'io neppur conosco,

Offro la sfida d' impossibil pugna

Stupido atleta, e vanamente all' aura

Sperdo il tesoro dei furori miei,

Mi travia la vendetta, ardo, il sudore per le carni mi scorre

Ambo le braccia

Apro e distendo nel desio feroce

Di schiacciar ....!' Universo !

OBI. E che patito

Avrai tu dunque, che dal cor ti sorga
Si terribile voto ?

GLA. Udirlo vnoi ?

Sacerdote di Cristo, udir lo vuoi ?
Ecco, m'ascolta Quindici anni or sono,
Fausta mi proteggea, Fausta, gia presso
Ad esser eletta imperatrice. Madre
Ella non era, e d' esser madre ancora
Desiava di cor ; quindi coloro
Cui noto e 1' avvenir, continuamente
Interrogava, e circondato il fianco
Di maliarde, e d' indovini, ai Numi
Doni sol degni delle Furie offriva.
La mia sposa a quel tempo una Gallese
Dai crini biondi ! . . . palpitarsi in grembo



15



A family, or country ; humbled,

Proscribed, vagabond; my life worse than a dog's

Tied by a chain, which in some remote

Corner can bite the groom

That lashes him, and vainly

Growling, can work off his rage. The brand

Of infamy is stamped upon my brow,

Not on my arms or feet, but here upon the brow,

So that the master's mark in the eyes

Of all the world may do dishonour to

The human being all it can. Oh, what

Store of hate is hidden in this breast,

What cries, what pants for vengeance !

My fate, the Amphitheatre, and Rome

I curse eternally, and insulting,

Spurn this stepmother earth,

That brings forth chains for me ! I insult

And curse that sun, which o'er all the world

Sends forth his light, making more grievous

The air of bondage. To our gods,

Tyrants that I never see,

I offer defiance as to a fight impossible ;

I a dull athlete ; and vainly on the air

I waste the treasures of my fury.

Revenge misleads me, sweat runs down, my arms

I open wide in the fierce desire

To crush .... the universe.

Our. What sufferings

You must have had, that your heart gives way
To such a fearful wish.

GLA. Shall I tell you?

Priest of Christ, you wish to know ?
Listen : 'Tis fifteen years ago
Since Faustina was my mistress ; Faustina, now
Styled Empress. A mother
She was not then ; but to be mother
Desired in heart : whence from those
Who know the future, continually
She inquired, surrounding herself
With wizards and diviners ; and to the gods
Made offerings fitted to appease the furies.
My wife about that time a fair
Haired Gaul she was felt the



16



Sentia la prima prole. . . . Ahi ! rivelato

Non 1' avesse giammai! .... la mia speranza

Pegno d'ardente, d'immortale ainore ! . . . .

Ma di gelosa invidia arse Faustina,

E guardd bieca la mia donna. . . . Un giorno

Mentr' io sognava un awenir beato,

Esce dal fondo del palagio un grido

Funebre, spaventevole. . . . Non m' era

Sconosciuta la voce . . . . io fremo e corro.

Ahi! qual orror! Sovra un letto di ferro

Pallida ignuda .... la compagna mia.

Eitta al suo fianco, ed un pugnale in mano

La sua maga dicea " Fausta, e tu pure

" Madre sarai, ma perche forza acquisti

" II mistero infernal, mi fa bisogno

" Un fanciullo non nato, e che sia tratto

" Innanzi tempo dal niaterno seno.

" Questo fanciul, che 1' arte mia richiede

" Pei filtri suoi, dell' anima una parte

" Al figlio tuo dara. La sorte a entrambi,

*' che sieno congiuuti o sien divisi

" Egual concedera novero d'anni."

10 d'un lungo ruggito orribilmente
Interruppi 1' infame. II suo pugnale,

Ma non 1' empia tremd " Che veggio ! Un uomo ?

Gridd Faustina. " E suo marito ; ei dun qua

" A rimpetto di noi sia spettatore."

Con quei ceppi di ferro, onde costrette

L' ossa dan sangue, allor ben dieci sgherri

Di Nubia mi legar, strinsero al piede

D' una colonna, che da me sforzata

Sul mio corpo crollo .... ma non si frang*

La mia catena .... e si compie il delitto.

11 fianco della vittima squarciarsi
Vidi sotto il coltello. Un lungo grido
Materno fu . . . . 1' ultimo addio ! Non cadde,
Non cadde il Cielo, e tu di Dio mi parli ? . . . .

OKI. Ma il tuo bambino?

GLA. Non aveva pill madre.

II disprezzo di Fausta al genitore
Lascid la vita. Sorvenia la notte,
E una fiaccola in mano io novamente
La via mi presi del palagio infame ;
E v' appiccai le fiammo, e fra i rottami,



17



Trembling of her babe. Ah ! would she had

Never told it my hopeful

Pledge of warm enduring love !

But with envious fury Faustina, burned;

And on my wife she looked askance. One day,

While I was dreaming of a happy future,

There came from the palace depths a cry

A wailing, fearful cry too well the voice

To me was known I trembling ran.

Ha! what horror! Upon a bed of iron,

Pale, naked my companion lay

On her right side. With dagger in her hand

A sorceress was saying, " Faustina, you

" Might be a mother, but because the infernals

" Have the power obtained, we must have

" An unborn child, from its mother's

" Womb untimely taken.

" This child, which my heart requires

" For its philters, part of its life

" To your son shall give. Fate to both,

" Whether they be divided or conjoined,

" Will equal make their length of years."

I, with a groan horribly prolonged,

Interrupted the monster. But the wretch's

Dagger did not flinch " What do I see? a man ! "

Faustina cried " It is her husband ! Let him

" Stand opposite and be spectator."

With iron bonds so tightly drawn

That they drew the blood, her Nubian

Cut-throats bound me to a pillar,

Which in my struggles

Fell upon my head ; but did not break

My chain ; and then I saw the crime completed

I saw the victim quiver

Beneath the knife. There was one long

Mother's shriek the last. The heavens did

Not fall they did not fall; and dost thou talk of God?
Oiu. And your child?

GLA, The mother was no more :

Faustina's contempt spared the father's

Life. Night came,

And, torch in hand, I made

My way to the accursed palace.

I gave it to the flames, and from among the rains,

B



18



Per tenebrose vie .... la rnia figliola


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