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Jac. Fos. And thine !—but I am blinded by the torch. Mar. As I had been without it. Couldst thou see bere? Jac. Fos. Nothing at first; but use and time had taught me

60
Familiarity with what was darkness;
And the grey twilight of such glimmerings as
Glide through the crevices made by the winds
Was kinder to mine eyes than the full Sun,
When gorgeously o'ergilding any towers
Save those of Venice; but a moment ere
Thou camest hither I was busy writing.

Mar. What?
Jac. Fos. My name : look, 'tis there-recorded

next
The name of him who here preceded me,-
If dungeon dates say true.
Mar.
And what of him?

70 Jac. Fos. These walls are silent of men's ends; they

only
Seem to hint shrewdly of them. Such stern walls
Were never piled on high save o'er the dead,
Or those who soon must be so.What of him?
Thou askest.-What of me? may soon be asked,
With the like answer-doubt and dreadful surmise-
Unless thou tellst my tale.
Mar.

I speak of thee!
Jac. Fos. And wherefore not? All then shall speak

of me:
The tyranny of silence is not lasting,
And, though events be hidden, just men's groans 80
Will burst all cerement, even a living grave's !
I do not doubt my memory, but my life;
And neither do I fear.
Mar.

Thy life is safe.
Jac. Fos. And liberty ?
Mar.

The mind should make its own !
Jac. Fos. That has a noble sound; but 'tis a sound,
A music most impressive, but too transient :
The Mind is much, but is not all. The Mind
Hath nerved me to endure the risk of death,
And torture positive, far worse than death

(If death be a deep sleep), without a groan,

90 Or with a cry which rather shamed my judges Than me; but 'tis not all, for there are things More woful—such as this small dungeon, where I may breathe many years. Mar.

Alas! and this Small dungeon is all that belongs to thee Of this wide realm, of which thy sire is Prince. Jac. Fos. That thought would scarcely aid me to

endure it. My doom is common; many are in dungeons, But none like mine, so near their father's palace; But then my heart is sometimes high, and hope 100 Will stream along those moted rays of light Peopled with dusty atoms, which afford Our only day; for, save the gaoler's torch, And a strange firefly, which was quickly caught Last night in yon enormous spider's net, I ne'er saw aught here like a ray. Alas! I know if mind may bear us up, or no, For I have such, and shown it before men ; It sinks in solitude: my soul is social.

Mar. I will be with thee. Jac. Fos.

Ah ! if it were so ! ΙΙο
But that they never granted—nor will grant,
And I shall be alone: no men; no books
Those lying likenesses of lying men.
I asked for even those outlines of their kind,
Which they term annals, history, what you will,
Which men bequeath as portraits, and they were
Refused me, so these walls have been my study,
More faithful pictures of Venetian story,
With all their blank, or dismal stains, than is
The Hall not far from hence, which bears on high
Hundreds of Doges, and their deeds and dates.

Mar. I come to tell thee the result of their
Last council on thy doom.
Jac. Fos.

I know it-look !
[He points to his limbs, as referring to the Question

which he had undergone. Mar. No-no-no more of that: even they relent

I 20

That you

From that atrocity.
Jac. Fos.

What then ?
Mar.
Return to Candia.
Jac. Fos.

Then my last hope 's gone.
I could endure my dungeon, for 'twas Venice;

could support the torture, there was something In my native air that buoyed my spirits up Like a ship on the Ocean tossed by storms,

130 But proudly still bestriding the high waves, And holding on its course; but there, afar, In that accursed isle of slaves and captives, And unbelievers, like a stranded wreck, My very soul seemed mouldering in my bosom, And piecemeal I shall perish, if remanded.

Mar. And here? Jac. Fos. At once—by better means, as briefer.. What! would they even deny me my Sire's sepulchre, As well as home and heritage ? Mar.

My husband ! I have sued to accompany thee hence,

140 And not so hopelessly. This love of thine For an ungrateful and tyrannic soil Is Passion, and not Patriotism; for me, So I could see thee with a quiet aspect, And the sweet freedom of the earth and air, I would not cavil about climes or regions. This crowd of palaces and prisons is not A Paradise ; its first inhabitants Were wretched exiles. Jac. Fos.

Well I know how wretched ! Mar. And yet you see how, from their banishment 150 Before the Tartar into these salt isles, Their antique energy of mind, all that

i. At once by briefer means and better.-[MS.] 1. (Compare

Once more upon the waters ! yet once more !

And the waves bound beneath me as a steed
That knows his rider."
Childe Harold, Canto III. stanza ii. lines 1-3,

Poetical Works, 1899, ii. 217, note 1.]

1

160

Remained of Rome for their inheritance,
Created by degrees an ocean Rome;
And shall an evil, which so often leads
To good, depress thee thus ?
Jac. Fos.

Had I gone

forth
From my own land, like the old patriarchs, seeking
Another region, with their flocks and herds;
Had I been cast out like the Jews from Zion,
Or like our fathers, driven by Attila 2
From fertile Italy, to barren islets,
I would have given some tears to my late country
And many thoughts; but afterwards addressed
Myself, with those about me, to create
A new home and fresh state : perhaps I could
Have borne this—though I know not.
Mar.

Wherefore not ?
It was the lot of millions, and must be
The fate of myriads more.
Jac. Fos.

Ayewe but hear Of the survivors' toil in their new lands,

1. In Lady Morgan's fearless and excellent work upon Italy, I perceive the expression of “Rome of the Ocean" applied to Venice. The same phrase occurs in the “Two Foscari." My publisher can vouch for me, that the tragedy was written and sent to England some time before I had seen Lady Morgan's work, which I only received on the 16th of August. I hasten, however, to notice the coincidence, and to yield the originality of the phrase to her who first placed it before the public.

(Byron calls Lady Morgan's Italy “fearless" on account of her strictures on the behaviour of Great Britain to Genoa in 1814. “ England personally stood pledged to Genoa. . . . When the British officers rode into their gates bearing the white flag consecrated by the holy word of 'independence,' the people kissed their garments.'

Every heart was open. .: Lord William Bentinck's flag of Independenza' was taken down from the steeples and high places at sunrise ; before noon the arms of Sardinia blazoned in their stead; and yet the Genoese did not rise en masse and massacre the English" (Italy, 1821, i. 245, 246). The passage which Byron feared might be quoted to his disparagement runs as follows: "As the bark glides on, as the shore recedes, and the city of waves, the Rome of the ocean, rises on the horizon, the spirits rally ; . . . and as the spires and cupolas of Venice come forth in the lustre of the mid-day sun, and its palaces, half-veiled in the aërial tints of distance, gradually assume their superb proportions, then the dream of many a youthful vigil is realized" (ibid., ii. 449).)

2. (Compare Marino Faliero, act ji. sc. 2, line 110, Poetical Works, 901, iv. 386, note 3.]

Their numbers and success; but who can number 170
The hearts which broke in silence at that parting,
Or after their departure ; of that malady 1
Which calls up green and native fields to view
From the rough deep, with such identity
To the poor exile's fevered eye, that he
Can scarcely be restrained from treading them?
That melody, which out of tones and tunes i.
Collects such pasture for the longing sorrow
Of the sad mountaineer, when far away
From his snow canopy of cliffs and clouds,

180
That he feeds on the sweet, but poisonous thought,
And dies. You call this weakness ! It is strength,
I say,—the parent of all honest feeling.
He who loves not his Country, can love nothing.

Mar. Obey her, then : 'tis she that puts thee forth.

i. That malady, which --MS. M.] 1. The Calenture.—[From the Spanish Calentura, a fever peculiar to sailors within the tropics

“So, by a calenture misled,

The mariner with rapture sees,
On the smooth ocean's azure bed,

Enamelled fields and verdant trees :
With eager haste he longs to rove

In that fantastic scene, and thinks
It must be some enchanted grove ;

And in he leaps, and down he sinks."

Swift, The South-Sea Project, 1721, ed. 1824, xiv. 147.] 2. Alluding to the Swiss air and its effects.—{The Ranz des Vaches, played upon the bag-pipe by the young cowkeepers on the mountains : -"An air," says Rousseau, "so dear to the Swiss, that it was forbidden, under the pain of death, to play it to the troops, as it immediately drew tears from them, and made those who heard it desert, or die of what is called la maladie du païs, so ardent a desire did it excite to return to their country. It is in vain to seek in this air for energetic accents capable of producing such astonishing effects, for which strangers are unable to account from the music, which is in itself uncouth and wild. But it is from habit, recollections, and a thousand circumstances, retraced in this tune by those natives who hear it, and reminding them of their country, former pleasures of their youth, and all their ways of living, which occasion a bitter reflection at having lost them." Compare Byron's Swiss "Journal" for September 19, 1816, Letters, 1899, ii. 355.) 3. (Compare Don Juan, Canto XVI. stanza xlvi. lines 6, 7–

“ The calentures of music which o'ercome

The mountaineers with dreams that they are highlands."']

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