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Were but as chaff, pois'd 'gainst the massy gold,
Fane. [Off her guard, in a soft, natural tone of voice.] Oh no! nor
do me any.
De Mon. What voice speaks now? Withdraw-withdraw this
I'll fall, and worship thee! –Pray! pray undo! Here another incident, which arises naturally, displays the judg. ment as well as genius of the poet, and her wonderful art in advancing the progress of her fable. While De Monfort is in the act of forcing her veil from her face he is opposed: and by wirom, but by Rezenvelt, who thus throws oil upon the fire of his hatred and indignation.
Rez. Stand off! no band shall lift this sacred veil.
De Mon. What, dost thou think De Monfort falln so low,
Rez. He lives, who dares to say-
between them.] Forbear! forbear! [REZENVELT, very much struck, steps back respectfully, and
makes her a very low bow. DE MONFORT stands for a while motionless, gazing upon her, till she, looking expressively to him, extends her arms, and he, rushing into them, irsts into tears. Freberg seems very much pleased. The company then gather about them, and the scene closes.]
The scene changes to De Monfort's apartment, discovers lady Jane expostulating with her brother. She probes him to the quick; deprecates the indulgence of his secret feelings, and presses him to a discovery with a tenderness so eloquent and a reasoning so dignified, that not even a faint conception can be formed of it, but by reading the words themselves. But as the transcription of them here would overload these observations beyond the allowance usually given to a concise analysis, we must refer pur readers to the play itself, and proceed to those parts which are more immediately necessary to the concatenation of the plot and the developinent of the main character. In their conference Jane exhibits perfection so much more than human, that we fear it can exist only in a poet's fancy: finding him seriously reluctant to disclose his secret, she expresses her willingness to remain ignonorant of it,
Then secret let it be!!
In his agitation, however, he lets fall an expression which harrows up her soul, and rekindles her desire to know the whole.When he exclaims
Oh, that cursed villain!
she falls on her knees in an agony of grief; on which he can no longer resist her importunities, and agrees to reveal to her his whole heart. Upon her suggesting the likelihood of its being an affair of love.
De Mon. A lover, say'st thou?
Jane. De Monfort, this is fiendlike, frightful, terrible!
De Mon. It will not part.
[His hand on his breast. I've lodg'd it here too long; With my first cares I felt its rankling touch, I loath'd him when a boy.
June. Who didst thou say?
De Mon. Oh! that detested Rezenvelt!
Fane. And would thy hatred crush the very man
De Mon. Ha! Thou hast heard it, then? From all the world, But most of all, from thee, I thought it hid.
Fane. I heard a secret whisper, and resolv'd
De Mon. I did! I did! 'twas that which drove me hither. I could not bear to meet thine eye again.
Fane. Alas! that, tempted by a sister's tears,
Had I remain’d with thee it had not been.
De Mon. When he disarm'd this curs'd, this worthless hand
Jane. O this is horrible! Forbear, forbear!
De Mon. Then let it light.
his ruin look,
Then close mine eyes for ever! Here then we have the whole amount of his provocation to the deadly hatred of De Monfort unfolded to us. And “the very head and front of Rezenvelt's offending" turns out to be no greater than
Envious gibing malice, poorly veiled
Yet this, trifling as it may appear, is too much for human frailty to endure with unruffled temper. Doctor Johnson somewhere remarks that there can be no stronger symptom of a bad heart than to be at once merry and malicious.—But we have already said enough upon this part of the subject, and will drop it.
The expostulations of lady Jane and count Freberg at length get a kind of extorted consent from De Monfort to meet Rezenvelt on friendly terms, and to interchange kindnesses with him. The latter advances with undisguised frankness, and offers his hand saying, “ let us be friends, and think of this no more;" to which the former with dignity replies,
No, my lord.
On hearing this, all are happy: lady Jane is in transports of joy, and Rezenvelt, overcome, runs to De Monfort with open arms to embrace him.
Rez. Away with hands! I'll have thee to my breast.
Here the fiend of rancor at once resumes his dominion over the heart of De Monfort; he shrinks back from Rezenvelt, and, in a cold and lofty tone, replies:
De Mon. Nay, if you please, I am not so prepard-
(Fane's countenance changes.
Rez. Well, be it so, De Monfort, I'm contented;
With plain and homely greeting, or, God save ye!