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Bass. Ay, noble Titus; and resolv'd withal
To do myself this reason and this right.

She will a handmaid be to his desires,
A loving nurse, a mother to his youth.
Sat. Ascend, fair queen, Pantheon. Lords,


Marc. Suum cuique is our Roman justice:
This prince in justice seizeth but his own.
Luc. And that he will, and shall, if Lucius live.
Tit. Traitors, avaunt! Where is the emperor's

Treason, my lord! Lavinia is surpris'd.
Sat. Surpris'd! by whom?
By him that justly may
Bear his betroth'd from all the world away.
Mut. Brothers, help to convey her hence away,
And with my sword I'll keep this door safe.

Exeunt LUCIUS, QUINTUS, and MARTIUS. Tit. Follow, my lord. and I'll soon bring her back.

Mut. My lord, you pass not here.
What! villain boy; 290
Barr'st me my way in Rome ? Stabs MUTIUS.
Help, Lucius, help!

Re-enter LUCIUS.

Luc. My lord, you are unjust, and more than so;
In wrongful quarrel you have slain your son.

Tit. Nor thon, nor he, are any sons of mine;
My sons would never so dishonour me.
Traitor, restore Lavinia to the emperor.

Luc. Dead, if you will; but not to be his wife
That is another's lawful promis'd love. Exit.


Sat. No, Titus, no; the emperor needs her not.
Nor her, nor thee, nor any of thy stock:
I'll trust, by leisure, him that mocks me once;
Thee never, nor thy traitorous haughty sons,
Confederates all thus to dishonour me.

Was there none else in Rome to make a stale
But Saturnine? Full well, Andronicus,
Agree these deeds with that proud brag of thine,
That said'st I begg'd the empire at thy hands.
Tit. O monstrous! what reproachful words
are these?

Sat. But go thy ways; go, give that changing

To him that flourish'd for her with his sword.
A valiant son-in-law thou shalt enjoy;
One fit to bandy with thy lawless sons,
To ruffle in the commonwealth of Rome.
Tit. These words are razors to my wounded


Sat. And therefore, lovely Tamora, Queen of

That like the stately Phoebe 'mongst her nymphs
Dost overshine the gallant'st dames of Rome,
If thou be pleas'd with this my sudden choice,
Behold, I choose thee, Tamora, for my bride,
And will create thee Empress of Rome.
Speak, Queen of Goths, dost thou applaud my


And here I swear by all the Roman gods,
Sith priest and holy water are so near,
And tapers burn so bright, and every thing
In readiness for Hymenæus stand,

I will not re-salute the streets of Rome,
Or climb my palace, till from forth this place
I lead espous'd my bride along with me.

Tam. And here, in sight of heaven, to Rome
I swear,

If Saturnine advance the Queen of Goths,


Your noble emperor, and his lovely bride,
Sent by the heavens for Prince Saturnine,
Whose wisdom hath her fortune conquered.
There shall we consummate our spousal rites.
Exeunt all but TITUS.
Tit. I am not bid to wait upon this bride.
Titus, when wert thou wont to walk alone,
Dishonour'd thus, and challenged of wrongs?


Mare. O Titus, see; O! see what thou hast done;


In a bad quarrel slain a virtuous son.

Tit. No, foolish tribune, no; no son of mine, Nor thou, nor these, confederates in the deed That hath dishonour'd all our family: Unworthy brother, and unworthy sons!

Luc. But let us give him burial, as becomes; Give Mutins burial with our brethren.

Tit. Traitors, away! he rests not in this tomb.
This monument five hundred years hath stood,
Which I have sumptuously re-edified:
Here none but soldiers and Rome's servitors
Repose in fame; none basely slain in brawls.
Bury him where you can; he comes not here.
Marc. My lord, this is impiety in you.
My nephew Mutius' deeds do plead for him;
He must be buried with his brethren.

Quint., Mart. And shall, or him we will ac-
Tit. And shall!' What villain was it spake
that word?

Quint. He that would vouch it in any place
but here.



Tit. What! would you bury him in my despite? Marc. No, noble Titus; but entreat of thee To pardon Mutius, and to bury him.

Tit. Marcus, even thou hast struck upon my crest,

And, with these boys, mine honour thou hast

My foes I do repute you every one;
So, trouble me no more, but get you gone.
Mart. He is not with himself; let us withdraw.
Quint. Not I, till Mutius' bones be buried.
MARCUS and the Sons of TITUS kneel.
Marc. Brother, for in that name doth nature
Quint. Father, and in that name doth nature


Tit. Speak thou no more, if all the rest will speed.

Marc. Renowned Titus, more than half my soul,

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The dismall'st day is this that e'er I saw,
To be dishonour'd by my sons in Rome!
Well, bury him, and bury me the next.
MUTIUS is put into the tomb.
Luc. There lie thy bones, sweet Mutius, with
thy friends,

Till we with trophies do adorn thy tomb.
All. Kneeling. No man shed tears for noble


He lives in fame that died in virtue's cause. Marc. My lord, to step out of these dreary dumps,

How comes it that the subtle Queen of Goths Is of a sudden thus advanc'd in Rome?

Tit. I know not, Marcus; but I know it is: Whether by device or no, the heavens can tell. Is she not then beholding to the man That brought her for this high good turn so far? Yes, and will nobly him remunerate.

Flourish. Re-enter, from one side, SATURNINUS, attended; TAMORA, DEMETRIUS, CHIRON, and AARON; from the other, BASSIANUS, LAVINIA, and Others.

Sat. So, Bassianus, you have play'd your prize: God give you joy, sir, of your gallant bride! 400 Bass. And you of yours, my lord! I say no more, Nor wish no less; and so I take my leave.

Sat. Traitor, if Rome have law or we have power,

Thou and thy faction shall repent this rape.

Bass. Rape call you it, my lord, to seize my own, My true-betrothed love and now my wife? But let the laws of Rome determine all; Meanwhile I am possess'd of that is mine.

Sat. 'Tis good, sir: you are very short with us; But, if we live, we'll be as sharp with you. 410

Bass. My lord, what I have done, as best I may, Answer I must and shall do with my life. Only thus much I give your grace to know: By all the duties that I owe to Rome, This noble gentleman, Lord Titus here, Is in opinion and in honour wrong'd; That, in the rescue of Lavinia, With his own hand did slay his youngest son, In zeal to you and highly mov'd to wrath To be controll'd in that he frankly gave: Receive him then to favour, Saturnine, That hath express'd himself in all his deeds A father and a friend to thee and Rome.


Tit. Prince Bassianus, leave to plead my deeds: 'Tis thou and those that have dishonour'd me. Rome and the righteous heavens be my judge, How I have lov'd and honour'd Saturnine!

Tam. My worthy lord, if ever Tamora Were gracious in those princely eyes of thine, Then hear me speak indifferently for all; And at my suit, sweet, pardon what is past.

Sat. What, madam! be dishonour'd openly, And basely put it up without revenge?

Tam. Not so, my lord; the gods of Rome forfend I should be author to dishonour you! But on mine honour dare I undertake For good Lord Titus' innocence in all, Whose fury not dissembled speaks his griefs. Then, at my suit, look graciously on him; Lose not so noble a friend on vain suppose, Nor with sour looks afflict his gentle heart. Aside to SATURNINUS. My lord, be rul'd by me, be won at last;


Dissemble all your griefs and discontents:
You are but newly planted in your throne;
Lest then the people, and patricians too,
Upon a just survey, take Titus' part,
And so supplant you for ingratitude,
Which Rome reputes to be a heinous sin,
Yield at entreats, and then let me alone.
find a day to massacre them all,
And raze their faction and their family,
The cruel father, and his traitorous sons,
To whom I sued for my dear son's life;
And make them know what 'tis to let a queen
Kneel in the streets and beg for grace in vain.
Aloud. Come, come, sweet emperor; come,




Take up this good old man, and cheer the heart That dies in tempest of thy angry frown.

Sat. Rise, Titus, rise; my empress hath prevail'd.

Tit. I thank your majesty, and her, my lord. These words, these looks, infuse new life in me. Tam. Titus, I am incorporate in Rome, A Roman now adopted happily, And must advise the emperor for his good. This day all quarrels die, Andronicus; And let it be mine honour, good my lord, That I have reconcil'd your friends and you For you, Prince Bassianus, I have pass'à My word and promise to the emperor, That you will be more mild and tractable. And fear not, lords, and you, Lavinia; By my advice, all humbled on your knees, You shall ask pardon of his majesty.

Luc. We do; and vow to heaven and to his highness,

That what we did was mildly, as we might,
Tendering our sister's honour and our own.



Marc. That on mine honour here I do protest. Sat. Away, and talk not; trouble us no more. Tam. Nay, nay, sweet emperor, we must all be friends:



SCENE I.-Rome. Before the Palace.
Enter AARON.

Aar. Now climbeth Tamora Olympus' top, Safe out of fortune's shot; and sits aloft, Secure of thunder's crack or lightning flash, Advanc'd above pale envy's threat'ning reach.

The tribune and his nephews kneel for grace; I will not be denied: sweet heart, look back. Sat. Marcus, for thy sake, and thy brother's here,

And at my lovely Tamora's entreats,

I do remit these young men's heinous faults: Stand up.

Lavinia, though you left me like a churl,
I found a friend, and sure as death I swore
I would not part a bachelor from the priest.
Come; if the emperor's court can feast two brides,
You are my guest, Lavinia, and your friends, *
This day shall be a love-day, Tamora.

Tit. To-morrow, an it please your majesty To hunt the panther and the hart with me, With horn and hound we'll give your grace bon jour.

Sat. Be it so, Titus, and gramercy too. Trumpets. Exeunt,

As when the golden sun salutes the morn,
And, having gilt the ocean with his beams,
Gallops the zodiac in his glistering coach,
And overlooks the highest-peering hills;
So Tamora.


Upon her wit doth earthly honour wait,
And virtue stoops and trembles at her frown.
Then, Aaron, arm thy heart, and fit thy thoughts
To mount aloft with thy imperial mistress,
And mount her pitch, whom thou in triumph long
Hast prisoner held, fetter'd in amorous chains,
And faster bound to Aaron's charming eyes
Than is Prometheus tied to Caucasus.

Away with slavish weeds and servile thoughts!
I will be bright, and shine in pearl and gold,
To wait upon this new-made empress.

To wait, said I? to wanton with this queen, This goddess, this Semiramis, this nymph, This siren, that will charm Rome's Saturnine, And see his shipwreck and his commonweal's. Holla! what storm is this?


Enter DEMETRIUS and CHIRON, braving. Dem. Chiron, thy years want wit, thy wit wants edge,

And manners, to intrude where I am grac'd, And may, for aught thou know'st, affected be.


Chi. Demetrius, thou dost overween in all,
And so in this, to bear me down with braves.
"Tis not the difference of a year or two
Makes me less gracious or thee more fortunate:
I am as able and as fit as thou

To serve, and to deserve my mistress' grace;
And that my sword upon thee shall approve,
And plead my passions for Lavinia's love.

Aar. Clubs, clubs! these lovers will not keep the peace.

Dem. Why, boy, although our mother, unadvis'd,

Gave you a dancing-rapier by your side,
Are you so desperate grown, to threat your friends?
Go to; have your lath glued within your sheath
Till you know better how to handle it.



Chi. Meanwhile, sir, with the little skill I have, Full well shalt thou perceive how much I dare. Dem. Ay, boy, grow ye so brave? They draw. Why, how now, lords! So near the emperor's palace dare you draw, And maintain such a quarrel openly? Full well I wot the ground of all this grudge: I would not for a million of gold


The cause were known to them it most concerns;
Nor would your noble mother for much more
Be so dishonour'd in the court of Rome.
For shame, put up.
Not I, till I have sheath'd
My rapier in his bosom, and withal
Thrust those reproachful speeches down his

That he hath breath'd in my dishonour here.
Chi. For that I am prepar'd and full resolv'd,
Foul-spoken coward, that thunder'st with thy

And with thy weapon nothing dar'st perform!
Aar. Away, I say!

Now, by the gods that war-like Goths adore,
This petty brabble will undo us all.

Why, lords, and think you not how dangerous
It is to jet upon a prince's right?
What is Lavinia then become so loose,


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How furious and impatient they be,

And cannot brook competitors in love?

I tell you, lords, you do but plot your deaths
By this device.

Aaron, a thousand deaths
Would I propose, to achieve her whom I love. 80
Aar. To achieve her! how?

Dem. Why mak'st thou it so strange? She is a woman, therefore may be woo'd; She is a woman, therefore may be won; She is Lavinia, therefore must be lov'd. What, man! more water glideth by the mill Than wots the miller of; and easy it is Of a cut loaf to steal a shive, we know: Though Bassianus be the emperor's brother, Better than he have worn Vulcan's badge.

Aar. Aside. Ay, and as good as Saturninus may.


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Faith, not me. Dem. Nor me, so I were one.

Aar. For shame, be friends, and join for that you jar:

'Tis policy and stratagem must do


That you affect; and so must you resolve,
That what you cannot as you would achieve,
You must perforce accomplish as you may.
Take this of me: Lucrece was not more chaste
Than this Lavinia, Bassianus' love.
A speedier course than lingering languishment
Must we pursue, and I have found the path.
My lords, a solemn hunting is in hand;
There will the lovely Roman ladies troop:
The forest walks are wide and spacious,
And many unfrequented plots there are
Fitted by kind for rape and villany:
Single you thither then this dainty doe,
And strike her home by force, if not by words:
This way, or not at all, stand you in hope.
Come, come; our empress, with her sacred wit
To villany and vengeance consecrate,
Will we acquaint with all that we intend ;


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And she shall file our engines with advice,
That will not suffer you to square yourselves,
But to your wishes' height advance you both.
The emperor's court is like the house of Fame,
The palace full of tongues, of eyes, of ears:
The woods are ruthless, dreadful, deaf, and dull;
There speak, and strike, brave boys, and take
your turns;

There serve your lusts, shadow'd from heaven's

And revel in Lavinia's treasury.


Chi. Thy counsel, lad, smells of no cowardice. Dem. Sit fas aut nefas, till I find the stream To cool this heat, a charm to calm these fits, Per Styga, per manes vehor. Exeunt.

SCENE II-A Forest.

Horns and cry of hounds heard.

Enter TITUS ANDRONICUS, with Hunters, etc.,
Tit. The hunt is up, the morn is bright and

The fields are fragrant and the woods are green.
Uncouple here and let us make a bay,
And wake the emperor and his lovely bride,
And rouse the prince and ring a hunter's peal,
That all the court may echo with the noise.
Sons, let it be your charge, as it is ours,
To attend the emperor's person carefully:
I have been troubled in my sleep this night,
But dawning day new comfort hath inspir'd.


A cry of hounds, and horns winded in a peal.
Many good morrows to your majesty ;
Madam, to you as many and as good:
I promised your grace a hunter's peal.

Sat. And you have rung it lustily, my lords;
Somewhat too early for new-married ladies.
Bass. Lavinia, how say you?
I have been broad awake two hours and more.
I say, no;
Sat. Come on then; horse and chariots let us

And to our sport. To TAMORA.

shall ye see

Our Roman hunting.


Madam, now

I have dogs, my lord, 20
Will rouse the proudest panther in the chase,
And climb the highest promontory top.
Tit. And I have horse will follow where the

Makes way, and run like swallows o'er the plain.
Dem. Chiron, we hunt not, we, with horse nor

But hope to pluck a dainty doe to ground.


SCENE III-A lonely Part of the Forest.

Enter AARON, with a bag of gold.


Which, cunningly effected, will beget
A very excellent piece of villany:
And so repose, sweet gold, for their unrest
That have their alms out of the empress' chest.
Hides the gold.

Tam. My lovely Aaron, wherefore look'st thou


When every thing doth make a gleeful boast!
The snake lies rolled in the cheerful sun,
The birds chant melody on every bush,
The green leaves quiver with the cooling wind,
And make a chequer'd shadow on the ground.
Under their sweet shade. Aaron, let us sit,
And, whilst the babbling echo mocks the hounds,
Replying shrilly to the well-tun'd horns,
As if a double hunt were heard at once,
The wandering prince and Dido once enjoy'd
Let us sit down and mark their yelping noise;
And after conflict, such as was suppos'd
And curtain'd with a counsel-keeping cave,
When with a happy storm they were surpris'd,
Our pastimes done, possess a golden slumber;
We may, each wreathed in the other's arms,
Whiles hounds and horns and sweet melodious

Be unto us as is a nurse's song

Of lullaby to bring her babe asleep.


Aar. Madam, though Venus govern your

Saturn is dominator over mine:
My silence and my cloudy melancholy,
What signifies my deadly-standing eye,
My fleece of woolly hair that now uncurls

Even as an adder when she doth unroll
To do some fatal execution?


No, madam, these are no venereal signs:
Vengeance is in my heart, death in my hand,
Blood and revenge are hammering in my head.
Hark, Tamora, the empress of my soul,
Which never hopes more heaven than rests in

This is the day of doom for Bassianus ;
Thy sons make pillage of her chastity,
His Philomel must lose her tongue to-day,
And wash their hands in Bassianus' blood.
Seest thou this letter? take it up, I pray thee,
And give the king this fatal-plotted scroll.
Now question me no more; we are espied;
Here comes a parcel of our hopeful booty,
Which dreads not yet their lives' destruction.
Tam. Ah! my sweet Moor, sweeter to me than


Aar. No more, great empress; Bassianus


Be cross with him; and I'll go fetch thy sons
To back thy quarrels, whatsoe'er they be.


Rome's royal

Bass. Whom have we here?
Unfurnish'd of her well-beseeming troop!

Aar. He that had wit would think that I had Or is it Dian, habited like her,


To bury so much gold under a tree,

And never after to inherit it.

Let him that thinks of me so abjectly
Know that this gold must coin a stratagem,

Who hath abandoned her holy groves,
To see the general hunting in this forest?
Tam. Saucy controller of our private steps!
Had I the power that some say Dian had,
Thy temples should be planted presently

With horns, as was Actæon's; and the hounds
Should drive upon thy new-transformed limbs,
Unmannerly intruder as thou art!

Lav. Under your patience, gentle empress,
'Tis thought you have a goodly gift in horning;
And to be doubted that your Moor and you
Are singled forth to try experiments.
Jove shield your husband from his hounds


to-day! "Tis pity ey should take him for a stag. Bass. Believe me, queen, your swarth Cim


Doth make your honour of his body's hue,
Spotted, detested, and abominable.

Why are you sequester'd from all your train,
Dismounted from your snow
now white goodly steed,
And wander'd hither to an obscure plot,
Accompanied but with a barbarous Moor,
If foul desire had not conducted you?

Lav. And, being intercepted in your sport,
Great reason that my noble lord be rated
For sauciness. I pray you, let us hence,
And let her joy her raven-colour'd love;
This valley fits the purpose passing well.

First thrash the corn, then after burn the straw.
This minion stood upon her chastity,
Upon her nuptial vow, her loyalty,

And with that painted hope she braves your

And shall she carry this unto her grave?

Chi. An if she do, I would I were an eunuch. Drag hence her husband to some secret hole, And make his dead trunk pillow to our lust. 130

Tam. But when ye have the honey ye desire, Let not this wasp outlive, us both to sting.

Chi. I warrant you, madam, we will make that sure.

80 Come, mistress, now perforce we will enjoy That nice-preserved honesty of yours.

Lav. O Tamora! thou bear'st a woman's face,

T'am. I will not hear her speak; away with her!

Bass. The king my brother shall have note of this.

Lav. Ay, for these slips have made him noted

long :

Tam. Give me thy poniard; you shall know, my, boys,


Your mother's hand shall right your mother's
Dem. Stay, madam; here is more belongs to


Dem. How now, dear sovereign, and our gracious mother!

Why doth your highness look so pale and wan? Tam. Have I not reason, think you, to look pale?


These two have tic'd me hither to this place :
A barren detested vale, you see, it is ;

The trees, though summer, yet forlorn and lean,
O'ercome with moss and baleful mistletoe :
Here never shines the sun; here nothing breeds,
Unless the nightly owl or fatal raven :
And when they show'd me this abhorred pit,
They told me, here, at dead time of the night,
A thousand fiends, a thousand hissing snakes,
Ten thousand swelling toads, as many urchins,
Would make such fearful and confused cries, 102
As any mortal body hearing it
Should straight fall mad, or else die suddenly.
No sooner had they told this hellish tale,
But straight they told me they would bind me

Good king, to be so mightily abus'd!

Tam. Why have I patience to endure all this? As unrelenting flint to drops of rain.


Unto the body of a dismal yew,
And leave me to this miserable death:
And then they call'd me foul adulteress,
Lascivious Goth, and all the bitterest terms 110
That ever ear did hear to such effect;
And, had you not by wondrous fortune come,
This vengeance on me had they executed.
Revenge it, as you love your mother's life,
Or be ye not henceforth call'd my children.

Dem. This is a witness that I am thy son.
Chi. And this for me, struck home to show
my strength.
Also stabs BASSIANUS,
who dies.
Lav. Ay, come, Semiramis, nay, barbarous

For no name fits thy nature but thy own.

Lav. Sweet lords, entreat her hear me but a word.

Dem. Listen, fair madam: let it be your glory To see her tears; but be your heart to them 140

Lav. When did the tiger's young ones teach the dam ?

O! do not learn her wrath; she taught it thee; The milk thou suck'dst from her did turn to marble;

Even at thy teat thou hadst thy tyranny.
Yet every mother breeds not sons alike:

To CHIRON. Do thou entreat her show a
woman pity.

Chi. What would'st thou have me prove myself a bastard?

Lav. 'Tis true the raven doth not hatch a

Yet have I heard, O! could I find it now, 150
The lion mov'd with pity did endure
To have his princely paws par'd all away.
Some say that ravens foster forlorn children,
The whilst their own birds famish in their


O! be to me, though thy hard heart say no,
Nothing so kind, but something pitiful.

Tam. I know not what it means; away with

Lav. O let me teach thee: for my father's sake,

That gave thee life when well he might have slain thee,

Be not obdurate, open thy deaf ears.


Tam. Hadst thou in person ne'er offended me,
Even for his sake am I pitiless.
Remember, boys, I pour'd forth tears in vain
To save your brother from the sacrifice;
But fierce Andronicus would not relent:
Therefore, away with her, and use her as you

The worse to her, the better lov'd of me.
Lav. O Tamora! be call'd a gentle queen,
And with thine own hands kill me in this place;
For 'tis not life that I have begg'd so long; 170
Poor I was slain when Bassianus died.

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