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625

As to make this relation ?

Spi. Care and utmost thifts
How to secure the Lady from surprisal,
Brought to my mind a certain shepherd lad,
Of small regard to see to, yet well skill'd

620
In every virtuous plant and healing herb,
That spreads her verdant leaf to th' morning ray:
He lov'd me well, and oft would beg me sing;
Which when I did, he on the tender grass
Would sit, and hearken ev'n to extasy,
And in requital ope his leathern scrip,
And show me simples of a thousand names,
Telling their strange and vigorous faculties :
Amongst the rest a small unsightly root,
But of divine effect, he cull’d me out;

630 The leaf was darkish, and had prickles on it, But in another country, as he said, Bore a bright golden flower, but not in this foil : Unknown, and like esteem'd, and the dull swain Treads on it daily with his clouted soon;

635 And yet more med'cinal is it than that Moly That Hermes once to wise Ulysses gave ; He call'd it Hæmony, and gave And bad me keep it as of sovran use 'Gainst all inchantments, mildew, blast, or damp, 640 Or ghastly furies' apparition. I purs’d it up, but little reckoning made, Till now that this extremity compellid: But now I find it true ; for by this means I knew the foul inc hanter though disguis’d, 645

Enter'd

it me,

$

Enter'd the very lime-twigs of his spells,
And yet came off : if you have this about you,
(As I will give you when we go, you may
Boldly assault the necromancer's hall;
Where if he be, with dauntless hardihood, 650
And brandish'd blade, rush on him, break his glass,
And thed the luscious liquor on the ground,
But feise his wand ; though he and his curs'd crew
Fierce sign of battel make, and menace high,
Or like the sons of Vulcan vomit smoke,

655 Yet will they soon retire, if he but shrink.

Bro. Thyrsis, lead on apace, I'll follow thee, And some good Angel bear a fhield before us !

The Scene changes to a stately palace, set out with all

manner of deliciousness : soft music, tables spread with all dainties. Comus appears with his rabble, and the Lady set in an inchanted chair, to whom he offers his glass, which she puts by, and goes about to rise.

Com. Nay, Lady, fit; if I but wave this wand, Your nerves are all chain’d up in alabaster, 660 And you a statue, or as Daphne was Root-bound, that fled Apollo.

La. Fool, do not boast, Thou canst not touch the freedom of my mind With all thy charms, although this corporal rind Thou hast immanacled, while Heav'n fees good. 665

Com. Why 675

"

COM. Why are you vext, Lady? why do you frown?
Here dwell no frowns, nor anger ; from these gates
Sorrow flies far : See here be all the pleasures
That fancy can beget on youthful thoughts,
When the fresh blood grows lively, and returns

670
Brisk as the April buds in primrose-season.
And first behold this cordial julep here,
That flames, and dances in his crystal bounds,
With spi'rits of balm, and fragrant fyrups mix'd.
Not that Nepenthes, which the wife of Thone
In Egypt gave to Jove-born Helena,
Is of such power to stir up joy as this,
To life so friendly, or so cool to thirst.
Why should you be so cruel to yourself,
And to those dainty limbs which Nature lene 680
For gentle usage, and soft delicacy?
But you invert the covenants of her trust,
And harshly deal like an ill borrower
With that which

you

receiv'd on other terms,
Scorning the unexempt condition
By which all mortal frailty must subsist,
Refreshment after toil, ease after pain,
That have been tir'd all day without repast,
And timely rest have wanted; but, fair Virgin,
This will restore all soon.
LA. 'Twill not, false traitor,

690
'Twill not restore the truth and honesty
That thou haft banish'd from thy tongue with lies.
Was this the cottage, and the safe abode
Thou toldst me of? What grim aspects are these,
VOL. III.

L

There

685

These ugly-headed monsters ? Mercy guard me! 695
Hence with thy brew'd inchantments, foul deceiver;
Hast thou betray'd my credulous innocence
With visor'd falfhood, and base forgery?
And would'st thou seek again to trap me here
With liquorish baits fit to insnare a brute ? 700
Were it a draft for Juno when she banquets,
I would not taste thy treasonous offer; none
But such as are good men can give good things,
And that which is not good, is not delicious
*To a well-govern'd and wise appetite.

703
Com. O foolishness of men ! that lend their ears
To those budge doctors of the Stoic fur,
And fetch their precepts from the Cynic tub,
Praising the lean and fallow Abstinence.
Wherefore did Nature pour her bounties forth, 710
With such a full and unwithdrawing hand,
Covering the earth with odors, fruits, and focks,
Thronging the feas with spawn innumerable,
But all to please, and fate the curious taste ?
And set to work millions of spinning worms, 715
That in their green shops weave the smooth-hair'd filk
To deck her sons, and, that no corner might
Be vacant of her plenty, in her own loins
She hutcht th all-worshipt ore, and precious gems
To store her children with : if all the world 720
Should in a pet of temperance feed on pulse,
Drink the clear stream, and nothing wear but frieze,
Th’all-giver would be’unthank’d, would be unprais'd,
Not lialf his riches known, and yet despis’d,

And

And we should serve him as a grudging master,

725
As a penurious niggard of his wealth,
And live like Nature's bastards, not her sons,
Who would be quite surcharg’d with her own weight,
And strangled with her waste fertility,
Th’earth cumber'd, and the wing’dair darkt with plumes,
The herds would over-multitude their lords,
The sea o'erfraught would swell, and th' unfought

diamonds
Would so imblaze the forehead of the deep,
And so bestud with stars, that they below
Would

grow

inur'd to light, and come at last 735 To gaze upon the sun with shameless brows. Lift, Lady, be not coy, and be not cosen'd With that same vaunted name Virginity. Beauty is Nature's coin, must not be horded, But must be current, and the good thereof

740 Consists in mutual and partaken bliss, Unsavory in th’ enjoyment of itself; If you

let slip tine, like a neglected rose It withers on the stalk with languish'd head. Beauty is nature's brag, and must be shown

745 In courts, in feasts, and high solemnities, Where most may wonder at the workmanship; It is for homely features to keep home, They had their name thence; coarse complexions And cheeks of sorry grain will serve to ply The sampler, and to tease the huswife's wool. What need a vermeil-tinctur'd lip for that, Love-darting eyes, or tresles like the morn?

There

750

L2

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