Friedrich Schiller.

The works of Frederick Schiller, translated from the German (Volume 3) online

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I follow thee.

Don Manuel. Away ! Let no man follow ! [Exit

Don C^sar [looking after him in surprise).
What means my brother ? Speak —

Isabella. In wonder lost

I gaze ; some mystery lurks —

Don CiESAR. Thou mark'st, my mother,

My quick return ; with eager zeal I flew
At thy command, nor asked one trace to guide
My footsteps to thy daughter. Whence was torn
Thy treasure ? Say, what cloistered solitude
Enshrined the beauteous maid?

Isabella. 'Tis consecrate

To St. Cecilia ; deep in forest shades.
Beyond the woody ridge that slowly climbs
Towards Etna's towering throne, it seems a refuge
Of parted souls !

Don C^sar. Have courage, trust thy sons ;

She shall be thine, tho' with unwearied quest
O'er eveiy land and sea I track her presence
To earth's extremest bounds : one thought alone
Disturbs, — in stranger hands my timorous bride
Waits my return ; to thy protecting arms
I give the pledge of all my joy ! She comes ;
Soon on her faithful bosom thou shalt rest,
In sweet oblivion of thy cares. [Exit.

Ihab When will the ancient curse be stilled, that weighs
Upon our house ? Some mocldng demon sports
With every new-formed hope, nor emdous leaves
One hour of joy. So near the haven smiled —
So smooth the treacherous main — secure I deemed
My happiness : the storm was lulled ; and bright
In evening's lustre gleamed the sunny shore •
Then thro' the placid air the tempest sweeps,
And bears me to the roaring surge again !

[She goes into the interior of the palace, folloned
by ])j£aa

r »


The Sceyie changes to the Garden.

Both Choruses, afterwards Beatrice.

The Chorus of Don Manuel enters in solemn procession,
adorned ivlth garlands, and bearing the bridal ornaments
above mentioned. The Chorus of Don C^sar opposes their

First Chorus (Cajetan).

Begone !
Second Chorus (Bohemund).

Not at thy bidding !
Cajetan. See'st thou not

Thy presence irks ?
Bohemund. Thou hast it, then, the longer!

Cajet. My place is here ! What arm repels me ?
Bohemund. Mine !

Cajet. Don Manuel sent me hither.
Bohemund. I obey

My Lord, Don Csesar.
Cajetan. To the eldest born

Thy master reverence owes.
Bohemund. The world belongs

To him that wins !
Cajetan. Unmannered knave, give place I

Bohem. Our swords be measured first !
Cajetan I find thee ever

A serpent in my path.
Bohemund. Where'er I list,

Thus will I meet thee !
Cajetan. Say, why cam'st thou hithei

To spy ?

Bohemund. And thou to question and command ?

Cajet. To parley I disdain !

Bohemund. Tor mnch I grace thee

By words I
Cajetan. Thy hot impetuous youth should bow

To reverend age.
Bohemund. Elder thou art — not braver.

Beatrice {rushing from her place of concealment).

Alas ! What mean these warlike men ?


Cajetan {tJ BoHEMUNDj. I heed not

Thy threats and lofty mien.
BoHEMUND. I serve a master

Better than thine.
Beatkice. Alas ! Should he appear !

Cajet. Thou liest ! Don Manuel thousandfold excels.
BoHEM. In eveiy strife the wreath of victory decks

Don Caesar's brows !
Beatrice. Now he will come ! Already

The hour is past !
Cajetan. 'Tis peace, or thou shouldst know

My vengeance !
Bohemxtnd Fear, not peace, thy arm refrains

Beat. Oh ! Were he thousand miles remote !
Cajetan. Thy looks

But move my scorn ; the compact I obey.
BoHEM. The coward's ready shield !
Cajetan. Come on ! I follow

BoHEM. To arms !
Beatkice [in the greatest agitation)

Their falchions gleam — the stnfe begins f

Ye heavenly powers, his steps refrain ! Some snare

Throw round his feet, that in this hour of dread

He come not : all ye angels, late implored

To give him to my arms, reverse my prayers ;

Far, far from hence convey the loved one !

[She runs into the alcove. At the moment when
the two Choruses are about to engage, Don
Manuel appears

Don Manuel, the Chorus.

Don Manuel Hold !

What do I see !
First Chorus to the Second (Cajetan, Bekengar, Manfeed)

Come on ! Come on !
Second Chorus (Bohemund, Rogeb, Hippolyte).

I)own with them !
Don Manuel [stepping between them with drawn sword).

Hold !
Cajetah. 'Tis the Prince I

1 I 2


BoHEMUNU. Be still !

I)0N Manuel I stretch him dead

Upon this verdant turf, that with one glance
Of scorn prolongs the strife, or threats his foe !
Why rage ye thus ? What maddening fiend impels
To blow the flames of ancient hate anew,
For ever reconciled ^ Say, who began
The conflict?— Speak—

First Chorus (Cajetan, Beeengar).

My Prince, we stood —

Second Chorus (Roger, Bohemund) interrupting them.

They came—

Don Manuel [to the First Chorus).
Speak thou I

First Chorus (Cajetan).

With wreaths adorned, in festai train,
We bore the bridal gifts ; no thought of ill
Disturbed our peaceful way ; composed for ever
With holy pledge of love we deemed your strife,
And trusting came ; Avhen here in rude array
Of arms encamped they stood, and loud defied us !

Don M. Slave ! Is no refuge safe ? Shall discord thus
Profane the bower of virgin innocence,
The home of sanctity and peace ?

[To the Second Chorus.
Eetire —
Your warlike presence ill beseems ; away !
I would be private. [They hesitate

In your master's name
I give command ; our souls are one, our lips
Declare each other s thoughts ; begone !

[To the First Chorus
Remain —
And guard the entrance.

Bohemund. So ! What next ? Our masters

Are reconciled'; that's plain ; and less he wins
Of thanks than peril, that with busy zeal
In princely quarrel stirs ; for when of strife
His Mightiness aweary feels, of guilt
He throws the red-dyed mantle unconcerned
On his poor follower's luckless head, and stands




Arrayed in vktue's robes! So let them end
E'en as they will their brawls, I hold it best
That we obey.

[Exit Second Chorus. The First withdraws to
the hack of the Stage ; at the same moment
Beatrice rtishes forward, and throws herself
into Don Manuel's arms.

Beatrice. 'Tis thou ! Ah ! cruel one,

Again I see thee — clasp thee — long appalled.
To thousand ills a prey, trembling T languish
For thy return : no more— in thy loved arms
I am at peace, nor think of dangers past,
Thy breast my shield from every threatening harm
Quick ! Let us lly ! They see us not — away !
Nor lose the moment.

Ha ! Thy looks affright me 1
Thy sullen cold reserve ! Thou tear'st thyself
Impatient from my circling arms, I know thee
No more ! Is this Don Manuel ? My beloved ?
My husband ?

Don Manuel Beatrice !

Beatrice. No words ! The moment

Is precious ! Haste.

Don Manuel. Yet tell me —

Beatrice. Quick ! Away

Ere those fierce men retui'n.

Don Manuel. Be calm, for nought

Shall trouble thee of ill.

Beatrice. Oh fly ! — alas,

Thou know'st them not !

Don Manuel. Protected by this arm

Canst tho« fear aught ?

Beatrice. Oh ! trust me ; mighty men

Are here.

Don Manuel. Beloved ! mightier none than I !

Beat. . And wouldst thou brave this warlike host alone ?

Don M. Alone ! the men thou fear'st —

Beatrice. Thou know'st them not,

Nor whom they serve.

Don Manuel. Myself! I am their Lord'

Beat . Thou art — a shudder cre(*-s thro' all mv frame !


Don M. Far other than I seemed ; so learn at last

To know me, Beatrice. Not the poor knight

Am I, the stranger and unknown, that loving

Taught thee to love ; but what I am — my race —

My power —
Beatrice. And art thou not Don Manuel ? Speak—

Who art thou ?
Don Manuel. Chief of all that bear the name,

I am Don Manuel, Prince of Messina !
Beat. . Art thou Don Manuel, Don Caesar's brother?
Don M. Don Caesar is my brother.
Beatrice. Is thy brother !

Don M. What means this terror? Know'st thou, then, Don
Caesar ?

None other of my race ?
Beatrice. Art thou Don Manuel,

That with thy brother liv'st in bitter strife

Of long inveterate hate ?
Don Manuel. This very sun

Smiled on our glad accord ! Yes, we are brothers !

Brothers in heart !
Beatrice. And reconciled? This day?

Don M. What stirs this wild disorder? Hast thou known

Aught but our name ? Say, hast thou told me ell ?

Is there no secret ? Hast thou nought concealed ?

Nothing disguised?
Beatrice. Thy words are dark ; explain.

What shall I tell thee ?
Don Manuel. Of thy mother nought

Hast thou e'er told ; who is she ? If in words

I paint her, bring her to thy sight —
Beatrice Thou know'st her!

And thou wert silent !
Don Manuel If I know thy mother.

Horrors betide us both !
Beatrice Oh ! she is gracious

As the sun's orient beam ! Yes ! I behold her;

Fond memory wakes ; — and from my bosom's depths

Her godlike presence rises to my view !

I see around her snowy neck descend

The tresses of her raven hair, that shade


The form of sculptured loveliness ; I see

The pale, high-thoughted brow ; the darkening glance

Of her large lustrous orbs ; I hear the tones

Of soul-fraught sweetness !
Don Manuel. 'Tis herself !

Beatrice. This day,

Perchance iad given me to her arms, and knit

Our souls in everlasting love; — such bliss

I have renounced, yes ! I have lost a mother

For thee !
Don Manuel. Console thyself, ]\Iessiua's Princess

Henceforth shall call thee daughter ; to her feet

I lead thee ; come — she waits.
Beatkice. What hast thou said?

Thy mother and Don Caesar's ? Never ! never !
Don M. Thou shudderest! Whence this horror? Hast thou

My mother ? Speak —
Beatrice. grief! dire misfortune!

Alas ! that e'er I live to see this day !
Don M. What troubles thee? Thou know'st me, thou hast

In the poor stranger knight, Messina's Prince
Beat. . Give me the dear unknown again ! With him,

On Earth's remotest wilds I could be blest '
Don C^sar [behind the scene).

Away! What rabble throng is here?
Beatrice. That voice !

Oh heavens ! Where shall I fly !
Don Manuel. Know'st thou that voice?

No ! thou hast never heard it ; to thine ear

'Tis strange —
Beatrice. Oli, come — delay not —

Don Manuel. Wherefore fly ?

It is my brother s voice ! He seeks me — how

He tracked my steps —
Beatrice. By all the holy Saints !

Brave not his wrath! oh quit this place— avoid him —

JNIeet not thy brother here !
Don Manuel. My soul ! thy fears


Confound ; thou heai-'st die not ; our strife is o'er
Yes ! we are reconciled.

Beairice. Protect me, Heaven,

In this dread hour !

Don Manuel. A sudden dire presage

Starts in my breast — I shudder at the thought ;

If it be true ! Oh horror ! Could she know

That voice ! Wert thou — my tongue denies to ulter

The words of fearful import — Beatrice !

Say, wert thou present at the funeral rites

Of my dead sire ?

Beatrice. Alas !

Don Manuel. Thou wert !

Beatrice. Forgive me!

Don M. Unhappy woman ! —

Beatrice. I was present !

Don Manuel. Horror !

Beat , Some mighty impulse urged me to the scene —
Oh be not angry — to thyself I owned
The ardent fond desire ; with darkening brow
Thou listened St to my prayer, and I was silent
But what misguiding inauspicious star
Allured, I know not ; from my inmost soul
The wish, the dear emotion spoke ; and vain
Aught else : — Diego gave consent — oh, pardon me !
I disobeyed thee.

[She advances towards him imploringly; at th«
same moment Don C^sar enters, accompamed
by the whole Chorus.

Both Brothers, Both Choruses, Beatrice.

Second Chorus (Bohemund) to Don C^sar.

Thou believ'st us not —
Believe thine eyes !
Don C^sar inrushes forward furiously, and at the sight of his
brother starts back ivith horror.

Some hell-bom magic cheats
My senses ; in her ai^ms ! Envenomed snake !
Is this thy love ? For this thy treacherous heart
Could lure with guise of friendship ! from Heaven


Breathed my immortal hate ! Dowi, do-v\Ti to Hell,
Thou soul of falsehood !

\He stabs him, Don MANUEL/aWs.
Don Manuel. Beatrice ! — my brother ! — •

I die !

[Dies. Beatrice sinks lifeless at his side.
First Chorus (Cajetan).

Help ! Help ! To arms ! Avenge with blood
The bloody deed !
Second Chorus (Bohemdnd). The fortune of the day

Is ours ! The strife for ever stilled : — Messina
Obeys one Lord.
First Chorus (Cajetan, Berengar, Manfred).

Eevenge ! The murderer
Shall die ! Quick offer to your master's shade
Appeasing sacrifice !
Second Chorus (Bohemund, Roger, Hippoltte).

My Prince ! fear nothing,
Thy friends are true.
Don C^sar (steps between them, looking around).

Be still ! The foe is slain
That practised on my trasting honest heart
With snai'es of brother s love ! O direful shows
The deed of death ! But righteous Heaven hath judged
First Chorus (Cajetan).

Alas to thee, Messina ! Wo for ever !
Sad city ! From thy blood-stained walls this deed
Of nameless horror taints the skies : ill fare
Thy mothers and thy children, youth and age,
And offspring yet unborn !
Don C^sar. Too late your grief —

Here give your help. [Pointing to Beatrice.

Call her to life, and quick
Depart this scene of terror and of death.
I must away and seek my sister : — Hence !
Conduct her to my mother —
And tell her that her son, Don Caesar, sends her !


[The senseless Beatrice is placed on a litter and

earned away by the Second Chorus. The


First Chorus remains uith the body, round
ivhich the boys rvho bear the bridal p]esents
range themselves in a semicircle.

Chorus (Cajetan).
List, how with dreaded mystery

Was signed to my prophetic soul,
Of Idndred blood the dire decree : —
Hither with noiseless giant stride
I saw the hideous Fiend of terror glide i

'Tis past ! — I strive not to control
My shuddering awe — so swift of ill
The Fates the warning sign fulfil.

Lo ! to my sense dismayed,
Sudden the deed of death has shown
Whate'er my boding fears portrayed :

The visioned thought was pain ;

The present horror curdles every vein I

One of the Chorus (Manfred)
Sound, sound the plaint of wo !

Beautiful Youth !
Outstretched and pale he lies,
Untimely cropped in early bloom ;
The heavy night of death has sealed his eyes j —
In this glad hour of nuptial joy,
Snatched by relentless doom,
He sleeps — while, echoing to the sky.
Of sorrow bursts the loud despairing cry !

A second (Cajetan).
We come, we come, in festal pride.
To greet the beauteous Bride ;
Behold ! the nuptial gifts, the rich attire ;

The banquet waits, the guests are there i'
They bid thee to the solemn rite

Of Hymen quick repair.
Thou hear'st them not — the sportive lyre.

The frolic dance, shall ne'er invite ;
Nor wake thee from thy lowly bed,
Foi deep the slumber of the dead !



The viJioJe Chorus.
No more the echoing hom shall cheer,
Nor bride with tones of sweetness charm his ear ,
On the cold earth he lies,
In death's eternal slumber closed his eyes

A third (Cajetan).
Wliat are the hopes, and fond desires

Of mortals' transitory race ?
This day, with harmony of voice and soul,

Ye woke the long-extinguished fires

Of brothers" love — yon flaming orb
Lit with his earhest beams your dear embrace :

At eve, upon the gory sand
Thou liest — a reeking corse I

Stretched by a brothers murderous hand.

Vain projects, treacherous hopes.
Child of the fleeting hour, are thine ;
Fond man I thou rear'st on dust each bold design.

Chorus (Berengae).

To thy mother I will bear
The burden of unutterable wo !
Quick shall yon cypress, blooming fair,

Bend to the axe's murderous blow.

Then twine the mournful bier !
For ne'er with verdant life the tree shall smile
That grew on death's devoted soil ;
Ne'er in the breeze the branches play,
Nor shade the wanderer in the noontide ray;
'Twas marked to bear the fruits of doom.
Cursed to the service of the tomb.

First (Cajetan).

Wo to the murderer ! Wo !
That sped exulting in his pridft.
Behold ! the parched earth drinks the crimson tide
Down, down it flows, unceasingly.

To the dim cavenied halls below.
Where throned in kindred gloom the sister train,

Of Themis progeny severe,
Brood in their songless silent reign I


Stern ministers of Wrath's decree,

They catch in swarthy cups thy streaming gore,

And pledge with horrid rites for vengeance evermore!

Second (Berengar).

Tho' swift of deeds the traces fade

From earth, before the enUvening ray ;
As o'er the brow the transient shade

Of thought, the hues of fancy flit away : —
Yet in the mystic womb unseen,

Of the dark ruling Hours that sway
Our mortal lot, wbate'er has been,

With new creative germ defies decay
The blooming field is time,
For Nature's ever-teeming shoot.
And all is seed, and all is fruit.

[The Chorus goes away, hearing the corjise fij
Don Manuel on a bier

Scene. — The Hall of Pillars. It is night.

The stage is lighted from above hy a single large lamp

Donna Isabella and Diego advance to the front

IsAB As yet no joyful tidings, not a trace

Found of the lost one !
D/ego Nothing have we heard,

My mistress ; yet o'er every track, unwearied.

Thy sons pursue. Ere long the rescued maid

Sball smile at dangers past.
Isabella. Alas ! Diego,

My heart is sad ; 'twas I that caused this wo !
Diego. Vex not thy anxious bosom ; nought escaped

Thy thoughtful care.
Isabella. Oh ! had I earlier shown

The hidden treasure !
Diego. Prudent were thy counsels,

Wisely thou left'st her in retirement's shade ;

So, trust in Heaven.
Isabella. Alas ! no joy is perfect —

Without this chance of ill my bliss were pure


DlEGO- Thy happiness is but delayed : enjoy
The concord of thy sons.

Isabella. The sight was raptare

Supreme — when, locked in one another's arms,
They glowed with brothers' love.

Diego. And in the heart

Jt bums ; for ne'er their princely souls have stooped
To mean disguise.

Is.\BELLA. Now, too, their bosoms wake

To gentler thoughts, and own the softening sway
Of love. No more their hot impetuous youth
Revels in liberty untamed, and spurns
Restraint of Law — attempered passion's self.
With modest chaste reserve.

To thee, Diego,
I vdW unfold my secret heart : this hour
Of feeling's opening bloom, expected long,
Wakes boding fears : thou know'st to sudden rage
Love stirs tumultuous breasts ; — and if this flame
With jealousy should rouse the slumbering fires
Of ancient hate — I shudder at the thought !
If these discordant souls perchance have thriLed
In fatal unison ! — Enough — the clouds,
That black with thundering menace o'er me himg,
Are past; some angel sped them tranquil by,
And my enfranchised spirit breathes again !

Diego. Rejoice, my mistress ; for thy gentle sense,

And soft prevailing art, more weal have wrought
Than all thy husband's power. Be praise to thee
And thy auspicious star !

Isabella. Yes ! foi'tune smiled ;

Nor light the task, so long with apt disguise
To veil the cherished secret of my heart,
And cheat my ever-jealous lord : more hard
To stifle mighty nature's pleading voice.
That, like a prisoned fire, for ever strove
To rend its confines.
Diego All shall yet be well ;

Fortune, propitious to our hopes, gave pledge
Of bliss that time will show.


Isabella.. I piaise not yet

My natal star, while darkening o'er my fate
This mystery hangs : too well the dire mischanie
Tells of the Fiend whose never slumbering rage
Pursues ouj: house. Now list what I have done,
And praise or blame me as thou wilt ; from thee
My bosom guards no secret : — ill I brook
This dull repose, while swift o'er land and sea
My sons unwearied track their sister's flight,
Yes ! I have sought — Heaven counsels oft, when vain
All mortal aid.

Diego. What I may know, my Mistress,


Isabella. On Etna's solitary height

A reverend Hermit dwells ; — benamed of old,

The Mountain Seer ; — who to the realms of light

More near abiding than the toilsome race

Of mortals here below, with purer air

Has cleansed each earthly grosser sense away ;

And from the lofty peak of gathered years,

As from his mountain home, with downward glance

Surveys the crooked paths of worldly strife.

To him are known the fortunes of our house ;

Oft has the holy Sage besought response

From Heaven, and many a curse with earnest prayer

Averted : thither at my bidding flew.

On wings of youthful haste, a messenger.

To ask some tidings of my child : each hour

I wait his homeward footsteps.

Diego. If mine eyes

Deceive me not, he comes ; and well his speed
Has earned thy praise.

Messenger, Isabella, Diego.

Isabella {to Messenger).

Now speak, and nothing hide

Of weal or woe : be Truth upon thy lips !

What tidings bear'st thou from the mountain Seer ?
Mess. . His answer, " Quick, retrace thy steps — the lost one

Is found."


fsABELLA. Auspicious tongue ! Celestial souufts

Of peace and joy ! thus ever to my vows,
Thrice honoured Sage, thy kindly message spoke !
But say, which heaven-directed brother traced
My daughter ?

Messenger. 'Twas thy eldest born that foun'l

The deep-secluded maid.

Isabella. ' Is it Don Manuel

That gives her to my arms ? Oh, he was ever
The cliild of blessing ! Tell me, hast thou borne
My offering to the aged man ? — the tapers
To bum before his Saint ? for gifts, the prize
Of worldly hearts, the man of God disdains.

Mess. . He took the torches from my hands in silence,
And stepping to the altar — where the lamp
Burned to his Saint — illumed them at its fire,
And instant set in flames the hermit cell.
Where he has honoured God these ninety years !

IsAB. . What hast thou said ? What horrors fright my soul ?

Mess . And three times shrieking "Wo!" with downward
He fled ; but silent with uplifted arm
Beckoned me not to follow, nor regard him !
So hither I have hastened, terror sped.

IsAB. O, I am tossed amid the surge again

Of doubt and anxious fears ; thy tale appals
With ominous sounds of ill. My daughter found —
Thou say St ; and by my eldest bom, Don Manuel ?
The tidings ne'er shall bless, that heralded
This deed of woe !

Messenger. My Mistress ! look around.

Behold the hermit's message to thine eyes
Fulfilled. Some charm deludes my sense, or hither
Thy daughter comes, girt by the warlike train
Of thy two sons !

[Beatrice is carried in by the Second Chorus
on a litter, and placed in the front of the stage
She is still without perception, and motionless

4'jo the bride of me8s1sa.

Isabella, Diego, Messenger, Beatrice.

Choi-us (BoHEMUND, RoGER, HippoLTTE, and the other nim
followers of Don C^sar).

Chor'us (Bohemund). Here at thy feet we lay

The maid, obedient to our Lord's command :
'Twas thus he spoke — " Conduct her to my mother;
And tell her that her sou, Don Caesar, sends her ! "

Isabella (is advancing towards her with outstretched arms, and
starts back in horror).
Heavens ! she is motionless and pale !

Chorus (Bohemund). She lives,

She will awake, but give her time to rouse
From the dread shock that holds each sense enthralled

IsAB. My daughter! Child of all my cares and pains !
And is it thus I see thee once again ?
Thus thou returnest to thy father's halls !
O let my breath relume thy vital spark ;
Yes ! I will strain thee to a mother's arms
And hold thee fast — till, from the frost of death
Released, thy life-warm current throbs again

[To the Chorus
Where hast thou found her ? Speak I What dire mis-
Has caused this sight of woe ?

Chorus (Bohemund). My lips are dumb !

Ask not of me : thy son will tell thee all —
Don Csesax — for 'tis he that sends her.

Isabella. Tell me.

Would 'st thou not say Don Manuel ?

Chorum ^^Bohemund). 'Tis Don Caesar

That sends her to thee.

Isabella [to the Messenger). How declared the Seer**
Speak ! Was it not Don Manuel ?

Messenger. 'Twas he !

Thy elder bom.

Isabella. Be blessings on his head

Whiche'er it be ; to him I owe a daughter
Alas ! that in this blissful hour, so long
Expected, long implored, some envious Fiend
Should mar my joy ! Oh, I must stem the tide



Of nature's transport ! In her childhood's home

I see my daughter ; me she knows not — heeds not—

Nor answers to a mother's voice of love !

Ope, ye dear eyelids — hands be warm — and heave

Thou lifeless bosom with responsive throbs

To mine! 'Tis she I — Diego, look! 'tis Beatrice!

The long-concealed — the lost — the rescued one !

Before the world I claim her for my own !

Chorus (Bohemund).

Online LibraryFriedrich SchillerThe works of Frederick Schiller, translated from the German (Volume 3) → online text (page 32 of 37)