« iepriekšējāTurpināt »
THE GOLDEN AGE RESTORED.] From the first folio. This Masque is written with great care: the conclusion of it is highly poetical. It must have been a splendid and interesting perform
THE GOLDEN AGE RESTORED.
The Court being seated, and in expectation,
Loud music: PALLAS in her chariot descending, to a softer music.
OOK, look! rejoice and wonder
That you, offending mortals, are
Of him that bears the thunder.
Jove can endure no longer,
Your great ones should your less invade; Or that your weak, though bad, be made A prey unto the stronger,
And therefore means to settle
Astræa in her seat again;
And let down in his golden chain
The Age of better metal.
Which deed he doth the rather,
That even Envy may behold Time not enjoy'd his head of gold Alone beneath his father.
But that his care conserveth,
As time, so all time's honours too,
Regarding still what heav'n should do, And not what earth deserveth.
[A tumult, and clashing of arms heard within.
But hark! what tumult from yond' cave is heard?
Hide me, soft cloud, from their profaner eyes,
[She retires behind a cloud.
The IRON AGE presents itself, calling forth the Evils.
I. Age. Come forth, come forth, do we not hear What purpose, and how worth our fear,
The king of gods hath on us?
He is not of the Iron breed,
That would, though Fate did help the deed,
Rise, rise then up, thou grandame Vice
Bring with thee Fraud and Slander,
To be a more commander.
Thy boys, Ambition, Pride, and Scorn,
Upon this enemy so great,
And but this once bring under,
Which of you would not in a war
To keep your own states even?
About it then, and let him feel
The Evils enter for the Antimasque and Dance, to two drums, trumpets, and a confusion of martial music : At the end of which, PALLAS re-appears, shewing her shield. The Evils are turned to Statues.
Pal. So change, and perish, scarcely knowing how, That 'gainst the gods do take so vain a vow, And think to equal with your mortal dates, Their lives that are obnoxious to no fates.'Twas time t'appear, and let their folly see, 'Gainst whom they fought, and with what destiny. Die all, that can remain of you, but stone, And that be seen a while, and then be none! Now, now descend, you both belov'd of Jove, And of the good on earth no less the love;
[The scene changes; and she calls
ASTREA and the GOLDEN AGE.
Descend, you long, long wish'd and wanted pair,
ASTRAA and the GOLDEN AGE descending with a
Ast. G. Age. And are we then
To live agen,
Ast. Will Jove such pledges to the earth restore As justice?
G. Age. Or the purer ore?
G. Age. But do they know,
How much they owe?
Ast. And will of grace receive it, not as due?
G. Age. True.
Cho. Let narrow natures, how they will, mistake, The great should still be good for their own sake.
[They come forward.
Pal. Welcome to earth, and reign.
Ast. G. Age. But how, without a train
Pal. Leave that to Jove: therein
No little part of his Minerva's care.
You far-fam'd spirits of this happy isle,
That, for your sacred songs have gain'd the style