Classic Horror Plays > Tamburlaine the Great, Part II > Act III
Tamburlaine the Great, Part II
By Christopher Marlowe
Published in 1587
Act III: Scene IV
[Alarms within. Enter the CAPTAIN, with OLYMPIA, and his SON.]
Come, good my lord, and let us haste from hence,
Along the cave that leads beyond the foe:
No hope is left to save this conquer'd hold.
A deadly bullet, gliding through my side,
Lies heavy on my heart; I cannot live:
I feel my liver pierc'd, and all my veins,
That there begin and nourish every part,
Mangled and torn, and all my entrails bath'd
In blood that straineth from their orifex.
Farewell, sweet wife! sweet son, farewell! I die.
Death, whither art thou gone, that both we live?
Come back again, sweet Death, and strike us both!
One minute and our days, and one sepulchre
Contain our bodies! Death, why com'st thou not
Well, this must be the messenger for thee:
[Drawing a dagger.]
Now, ugly Death, stretch out thy sable wings,
And carry both our souls where his remains.--
Tell me, sweet boy, art thou content to die?
These barbarous Scythians, full of cruelty,
And Moors, in whom was never pity found,
Will hew us piecemeal, put us to the wheel,
Or else invent some torture worse than that;
Therefore die by thy loving mother's hand,
Who gently now will lance thy ivory throat,
And quickly rid thee both of pain and life.
Mother, despatch me, or I'll kill myself;
For think you I can live and see him dead?
Give me your knife, good mother, or strike home:
The Scythians shall not tyrannize on me:
Sweet mother, strike, that I may meet my father.
[She stabs him, and he dies.]
Ah, sacred Mahomet, if this be sin,
Entreat a pardon of the God of heaven,
And purge my soul before it come to thee!
[She burns the bodies of her HUSBAND and SON, and then attempts to kill herself.]
[Enter THERIDAMAS, TECHELLES, and all their train.]
How now, madam! what are you doing?
Killing myself, as I have done my son,
Whose body, with his father's, I have burnt,
Lest cruel Scythians should dismember him.
'Twas bravely done, and like a soldier's wife.
Thou shalt with us to Tamburlaine the Great,
Who, when he hears how resolute thou wert,
Will match thee with a viceroy or a king.
My lord deceas'd was dearer unto me
Than any viceroy, king, or emperor;
And for his sake here will I end my days.
But, lady, go with us to Tamburlaine,
And thou shalt see a man greater than Mahomet,
In whose high looks is much more majesty,
Than from the concave superficies
Of Jove's vast palace, the empyreal orb,
Unto the shining bower where Cynthia sits,
Like lovely Thetis, in a crystal robe;
That treadeth Fortune underneath his feet,
And makes the mighty god of arms his slave;
On whom Death and the Fatal Sisters wait
With naked swords and scarlet liveries;
Before whom, mounted on a lion's back,
Rhamnusia bears a helmet full of blood,
And strows the way with brains of slaughter'd men;
By whose proud side the ugly Furies run,
Hearkening when he shall bid them plague the world;
Over whose zenith, cloth'd in windy air,
And eagle's wings join'd to her feather'd breast,
Fame hovereth, sounding of her golden trump,
That to the adverse poles of that straight line
Which measureth the glorious frame of heaven
The name of mighty Tamburlaine is spread;
And him, fair lady, shall thy eyes behold.
Take pity of a lady's ruthful tears,
That humbly craves upon her knees to stay,
And cast her body in the burning flame
That feeds upon her son's and husband's flesh.
Madam, sooner shall fire consume us both
Than scorch a face so beautiful as this,
In frame of which Nature hath shew'd more skill
Than when she gave eternal chaos form,
Drawing from it the shining lamps of heaven.
Madam, I am so far in love with you,
That you must go with us: no remedy.
Then carry me, I care not, where you will,
And let the end of this my fatal journey
Be likewise end to my accursed life.
No, madam, but the beginning of your joy:
Come willingly therefore.
Soldiers, now let us meet the general,
Who by this time is at Natolia,
Ready to charge the army of the Turk.
The gold and silver, and the pearl, ye got,
Rifling this fort, divide in equal shares:
This lady shall have twice so much again
Out of the coffers of our treasury.
Act III: Scene III |
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