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Cas. Let it be
Fitz-Ed. Oh, my father!
Cas. And 'tis this
Fitz-Ed. No.-I come
Fitz-Ed. Oh, I must, and thou
Cas. Patience-oh, patience, heart!
Fitz-Ed. Nay, hear me on.—Is not all lost ?—and thouDost thou still singly labor to oppose The common doom ?-oh, idle all. - There now Is left thee but one way to save thyself :But one—and I must speak it, howsoe'er It grates against thine ear-it jars within Thy bosom—I must speak it—'tis submission.
Cas. Heaven !-are thy thunders idle ?—and thou, earth That yet endurest his tread thou wilt not part Beneath him, and deep hide his infamy! No-thou disdainest that such a rank pollution Should rest within thy bosom!—This to me!Submission !- Breathes the recreant to confront Caswallon with such counsel ?-Yes-behold him! There—with the uttered wish—the hateful hope Fresh reeking from his lips, he stands before meEndless disgrace !-a Cambrian, and-my son!
Fitz-Ed. Yet—vet I will be patient.
Cas. No-thou blot
Thor shalt not plume thee in my fall, nor show me
Fitz-Ed. Dreadful thought !-
Cas. I will not hear thee.—Hence.
Fitz-Ed. Obdurate man, bow thy proud spirit down,
(Starting up resolvedly:)
Cas. Reveal !-betray me to— ?
Fitz-Ed. Oh, agony of heart!
Cas. (Going.) Nay, follow not.
Fitz-Ed. Hark are there thunders crashing in the air !
here. That misery still is spared me. He is gone!
SOLDIERS AND PEOPLE.-Knowles.
(The people have gathered to one side, and look in the opposite direction with apprehension and trouble.)
Verner. Now Tell observe the people.
Tell. Ha! they please me now-I like them now-their looks Are just in season.
Pierre. 'Tis Sarnem.
Pierre. A pole ; and on the top of it a cap
Theo. So could I !—My heart hath oft Leaped at the sight of it. What comes he now To do?
(Sarnem enters with soldiers bearing Gesler's cap upon a pole, which he fixes into the ground; the people looking on in silence and amazement.)
Sarnem. Ye men of Altorf!
Tell. Have I my hearing?
Tell. Or sight?-They do it, Verner!
Look! Ne'er call me man again!
Tell. No! no !-since I've tasted,
Sar. (Striking a person.) Bow lower, slave!
Tell. Do you feel that blow—my flesh doth tingle with it.
(Enter Michael through the crowd.)
Mich. I'll question now, perhaps not then obey.
Sar. "Tis Gesler's will that all
Mich. Were it thy lady's cap, I'd courtesy to it.
Sar. Do you mock us, friend?
Mich. Not I. I'll bow to Gesler, if you please ;
Tell. Well done!
Sar. Once for all bow to that cap.
hear slave? Mich. Slave! Tell. A man! I'll swear a man! Don't hold me, Verner.
Sar. Villain, bow
Mich. No! not to Gesler's self.
Sar. What! shrink you, cowards ? Must I do Your duty for you ?
Tell. Let them stir-I've scattered A flock of wolves did outnumber them For sport I did it.-Sport !-I scattered them With but a staff, not half so thick as this. (Wrests Sarnem's weapon from him—Sarnem and Soldiers fly.) Men of Altorf, What fear ye! See what things you fear—the show And surfaces of men. Why stand you wondering there? Why gaze you still with blanched cheeks upon me? Lack you the manhood even to look on, And see bold deeds achieved by others' hands? Or is't that cap still holds your thralls to fear ? Be free then.—There! T'hus do I ople on The insolence of Gesler. (Dashes down the pole.)
Druid. Say, thou false one!
Elidurus. Death—sudden death!
Druid No! lingering piecemeal death;
Elid. That on my soul doth lie some secret grief,
Elid. I know, and terrible means ;
those means, And I endure them; yet, I think, my patience Will for some space baffle your torturing fury.
Druid. Be that best known when our inflicted goads Harrow thy flesh!
Arvi. Stranger, ere this be tried,
Elid. Such a crime
wretch thou seest, I'll speak no more.
Elid. Yet, one word more.