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I'll face it. Who shall dare suspect me? Ulr.

You had no guests-no visiters—no life Breathing around you, save my mother's? Wer.

The Hungarian !

Ere sunset.

W'er. No; I hid him in that very Conceal'd and fatal gallery.




He is gone! he disappear'd


And favourable moment to escape

The myrmidons of Idenstein, who were

Dogging him yester-even.

You reclosed

The panel?
Wer. Yes; and not without reproach
(And inner trembling for the avoided peril)
At his dull heedlessness, in leaving thus
His shelterer's asylum to the risk

Of a discovery.


You are sure you closed it?

Wer. Certain. Ulr. That's well; but had been better, if You ne'er had turn'd it to a den for. -[He pauses. Wer. Thieves ! Thou wouldst say: I must bear it and deserve it; But not Ulr. No, father; do not speak of this: This is no hour to think of petty crimes, But to prevent the consequence of great ones. Why would you shelter this man?

Wer. Could I shun it? A man pursued by my chief foe; disgraced For my own crime; a victim to my safety, Imploring a few hours' concealment from

Pshaw! leave any thing
Except our father's sovereignty and castles,
For which you have so long panted and in vain!
What nume? You have no name, since that you bear
Is feign'd.

There I'll find him.
[ULRIC is going.
Wer. It is too late: he had left the palace cre
I quitted it. I found the secret panel
Open, and the doors which lead from that hall
Most true; but still I would not have it
Which masks it: I but thought he had snatch'd the Engraved in crimson in men's memorics,
Though in this most obscure abode of men.
Besides, the search.



The very wretch who was the cause he needed
Such refuge. Had he been a wolf, I could not
Have in such circumstances thrust him forth.

Ulr. And like the wolf he hath repaid you. But
It is too late to ponder thus:
you must
Set out ere dawn. I will remain here to
Trace the murderer, if 't is possible.


Wer. But this my sudden flight will give the MoSuspicion: two new victims in the lieu Of one, if I remain. The fled Hungarian, Who seems the culprit, and

Who seems ? Who else

Ulr. Can be so? Wer. Not I, though just now you doubted— You, my son!-doubted


And do you doubt of him

The fugitive?
Boy! since I fell into
The abyss of crime (though not of such crime), I,
Having seen the innocent oppress'd for me,
May doubt even of the guilty's guilt. Your heart
Is free, and quick with virtuous wrath to accuse
Appearances; and views a criminal

In Innocence's shadow, it may be,
Because 't is dusky.


And if I do so,
What will mankind, who know you not, or knew
But to oppress ? You must not stand the hazard.
Away! I'll make all easy. Idenstein
Will for his own sake and his jewel's hold

His peace- he also is a partner in
Your flight-moreover

Wer. Fly! and leave my name Link'd with the Hungarian's, or preferr'd as poorest, To bear the brand of bloodshed?

I will provide against
Aught that can touch you. No one knows you here
As heir of Siegendorf: if Idenstein
Suspects, 't is but suspicion, and he is

A fool: his folly shall have such employment,
Too, that the unknown Werner shall give way
To nearer thoughts of self. The laws (if c'er
Laws reach'd this village) are all in abeyance
With the late general war of thirty years,
Or crush'd, or rising slowly from the dust,
To which the march of armies trampled them.
Stralenheim, although noble, is unheeded
Here, save as such-without lands, influence,
Save what hath perish'd with him.
Few prolong
A week beyond their funeral rites their sway
O'er men, unless by relatives, whose interest
Is roused such is not here the case; he died
Alone, unknown,-a solitary grave,
Obscure as his deserts, without a scutcheon,
Is all he'll have, or wants. If I discover
The assassin, 't will be well-if not, believe me
None else; though all the full-fed train of menials
May howl above his ashes (as they did
Around him in his danger on the Oder),
Will no more stir a finger now than then.
Hence! hence! I must not hear your answer.-

ok! The stars are almost faded, and the grey Begins to grizzle the black hair of night. You shall not answer:-1 -Pardon me that I Am peremptory; 't is your son that speaks, Your long-lost, late-found son.-Let's call my mo


Softly and swiftly step, and leave the rest
To me: I'll answer for the event as far
As regards you, and that is the chief point,
As my first duty, which shall be observed.
We'll meet in Castle Siegendorf-once more
Our banners shall be glorious! Think of that
Alone, and leave all other thoughts to me,
Whose youth may better battle with them. Hence !
And may your age be happy!-I will kiss

My mother once more, then Heaven's speed be with


Wer. This counsel's safe-but is it honourable? Ulr. To save a father is a child's chief honour.


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And answer that yourself.
He's very youthful,
And strong and beautiful as a young tiger.
Eric. That's not a faithful vassal's likeness.

Perhaps a true one.



Pity, as I said,

The wars are over: in the hall, who like
Count Ulric for a well-supported pride,
Which awes, but yet offends not? in the field,
Who like him with his spear in hand, when, gnashing
His tusks, and ripping up from right to left
The howling hounds, the boar makes for the thicket?
Who backs a horse, or bears a hawk, or wears
A sword like him? Whose plume nods knightlier?

Hen. No one's, I grant you. Do not fear, if war
Be long in coming, he is of that kind
Will make it for himself, if he hath not
Already done as much.


What do you mean?
Hen. You can't deny his train of followers
(But few our native fellow vassals born
On the domain) are such a sort of knaves
As (Pauses.)



Hen. The war (you love so much) leaves living. Like other parents, she spoils her worst children. Eric. Nonsense! they are all brave iron-visaged fellows, Such as old Tilly loved.

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Ulr. Walstein.

Eric. I fear he scarcely has recover'd The toils of Monday: 't was a noble chase: You spear'd four with your own hand.


Is awkward from the.


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Eric. I will, upon what you have said.

Hen. I assure you I meant nothing,- -a mere sport Of words, no more; besides, had it been otherwise, He is to espouse the gentle Baroness, Ida of Stralenheim, the late baron's heiress; And she, no doubt, will soften whatsoever Of fierceness the late long intestine wars Have given all natures, and most unto those Who were born in them, and bred up upon The knees of Homicide; sprinkled, as it were, With blood even at their baptism. Prithee, peace On all that I have said!


Good morrow, count. Ur. Good morrow, worthy Henrick. Eric, is All ready for the chase?

Eric. The dogs are order'd Down to the forest, and the vassals out To beat the bushes, and the day looks promising. Shall I call forth your excellency's suite? What courser will you please to mount?


The dun,


True, good Eric;
I had forgotten - let it be the grey, then,
Old Ziska: he has not been out this fortnight.
Eric. He shall be straight caparison'd. How many
your immediate retainers shall
Escort you?

I leave that to Weilburg, our
Master of the horse.


[Exit ERIC. My lord! The news -(RODOLPH points to HENRICK.) How now, Henrick? why

Loiter you here?

Hen. For your commands, my lord. Ur. Go to my father, and present my duty, And learn if he would aught with me before

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To all my plans.


It will be difficult

To excuse your absence to the count your father.
Ulr. Yes, but the unsettled state of our domain
In high Silesia will permit and cover

My journey. In the mean time, when we are
Engaged in the chase, draw off the eighty men
Whom Wolffe leads- keep the forests on your route:
You know it well?


As well as on that night

When we

Ulr. We will not speak of that until We can repeat the same with like success : And when you have join'd, give Rosenberg this letter. [Gives a letter. Add further, that I have sent this slight addition To our force with you and Wolffe, as herald of My coming, though I could but spare them ill At this time, as my father loves to keep Full numbers of retainers round the castle, Until this marriage, and its feasts and fooleries, Are rung out with its peal of nuptial nonsense. Rod. I thought you loved the lady Ida? Ulr.

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I do so but it follows not from that

I would bind in my youth and glorious years,
So brief and burning, with a lady's zone,
Although 't were that of Venus; -but I love her,
As woman should be loved, fairly and solely.

Rod. And constantly?

Ulr. I think so; for I love Nought else. But I have not the time to pause Upon these gewgaws of the heart. Great things We have to do ere long. Speed! speed! good Rodolph!

Rod. On my return, however, I shall find The Baroness Ida lost in Countess Siegendorf?

Ulr. Perhaps my father wishes it; and sooth "T is no bad policy: this union with The last bud of the rival branch at once Unites the future and destroys the past. Rod. Adieu. Ulr. Yet hold-we had better keep together Until the chase begins; then draw thou off, And do as I have said.


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About his death—and even the place of it Is scarcely known.

Ulr. Some obscure village on The Saxon or Silesian frontier.

Has left no testament-no farewell words?
Ulr. I am neither confessor nor notary,

So cannot say.

Ah! here's the lady Ida.
Ulr. You are early, my sweet cousin!

Dear Ulric, if I do not interrupt you.
Why do you call me "cousin ?"
Ülr. (smiling).

Are we not so ?

Ida. Yes, but I do not like the name; methinks It sounds so cold, as if you thought upon Our pedigree, and only weigh'd our blood. Ulr. (starting.)

Blood! Ida. Why does yours start from your cheeks? Ulr. Ay ! doth it? Ida. It doth. but no! it rushes like a torrent Even to your brow again.

Ulr. (recovering himself). And if it fled, It only was because your presence sent it

Back to my heart, which beats for you, sweet cousin!

Ida. "

Cousin" again.


Not too early,

Nay, then I'll call you sister. Ida. I like that name still worse.-Would we had ne'er Been aught of kindred!

Ulr. (gloomily).

Would we never had!

Ida. Oh heavens! and can you wish that?
Dearest Ida!

Did I not echo your own wish?

Yes, Ulric,
But then I wish'd it not with such a glance,
And scarce knew what I said; but let me be
Sister, or cousin, what you will, so that
I still to you am something.

You shall be

Ulr. All—all Ida.

And you to me are so already;

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I see you.



Ida. In sleep-I see him lie Pale, bleeding, and a man with a raised knife Beside him.

But you do not see his face?
Ida (looking at him). No! Oh, my God! do you?
Why do you ask?
Ida. Because you look as if you saw a murderer !
Ulr. (agitatedly). Ida, this is mere childishness;
your weakness

Infects me, to my shame; but as all feelings
Of yours are common to me, it affects me.
Prithee, sweet child, change

Child, indeed! I have
Full fifteen summers!
[A bugle sounds.
Hark, my lord, the bugle !
Ida (peevishly to RODOLPH). Why need you tell
him that? Can he not hear it
Without your echo?

Pardon me, fair baroness!
Ida. I will not pardon you, unless you earn it
By aiding me in my dissuasion of
Count Ulric from the chase to-day.

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You will not,


You jest.
Ida. Indeed I do not: - ask of Rodolph.


My lord, within this quarter of an hour
You have changed more than e'er I saw you change
In years.
'Tis nothing; but if 't were, the air
Would soon restore me. I'm the true chameleon,
And live but on the atmosphere; your feasts
In castle halls, and social banquets, nurse not
My spirit-I'm a forester and breather
Of the steep mountain-tops, where I love all
The eagle loves.


Except his prey, I hope.
Uir. Sweet Ida, wish me a fair chase, and I
Will bring you six boars' heads for trophies home.

Ida. And will you not stay, then? You shall not

Come! I will sing to you.


Ida, you scarcely

Will make a soldier's wife.

Ida. I do not wish To be so; for I trust these wars are over, And you will live in peace on your domains.

Enter WERNER as COUNT SIEGENDORF. Ulr. My father, I salute you, and it grieves me With such brief greeting.-You have heard our bugle; The vassals wait.

So let them. -You forget
To-morrow is the appointed festival

In Prague for peace restored. You are apt to follow
The chase with such an ardour as will scarce
Permit you to return to-day, or if
Return'd, too much fatigued to join to-morrow
The nobles in our marshall'd ranks.


You, count, Will well supply the place of both-I am not A lover of these pageantrics.


No, Ulric: It were not well that you alone of all Our young nobility

In aspect and demeanour.
Sieg. (to IDA).

True, dear child,

Though somewhat frankly said for a fair damsel. But, Ulric, recollect too our position,

And far the noblest

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So lately reinstated in our honours.
Believe me, 't would be mark'd in any house,
But most in ours, that ONE should be found wanting
At such a time and place. Besides, the Heaven
Which gave us back our own, in the same moment
It spread its peace o'er all, hath double claims
On us for thanksgiving: first, for our country;
And next, that we are here to share its blessings.

Ulr. (aside). Devout, too! Well, sir, I obey at once.
(Then aloud to a Servant.)
Ludwig, dismiss the train without! [Exit LUDWIG.
And so
You yield at once to him what I for hours
Might supplicate in vain.

Sieg. (smiling).

You are not jealous Of me, I trust, my pretty rebel! who Would sanction disobedience against all

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Then pray you be as punctual to its notes:
I'll play you King Gustavus' march.

And why not

Ulr. Old Tilly's? Ida. Not that monster's! I should think My harp-strings rang with groans, and not with music, Could aught of his sound on it: - - but come quickly; Your mother will be eager to receive you. [Exit. Sieg. Ulric, I wish to speak with you alone. Ulr. My time's your vassal.

(Aside to RODOLPH.) Rodolph, hence! and do As I directed: and by his best speed And readiest means let Rosenberg reply.

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Am aught connected with that city. Then God speed you!


Fare ye well, Count Siegendorf !
Sieg. Ulric, this man, who has just departed, is
One of those strange companions whom I fain
Would reason with you on.

My lord, he is
Noble by birth, of one of the first houses
In Saxony.


I talk not of his birth,
But of his bearing. Men speak lightly of him.

Ulr. So they will do of most men. Even the monarch
Is not fenced from his chamberlain's slander, or
The sneer of the last courtier whom he has made
Great and ungrateful.


If I must be plain, The world speaks more than lightly of this Rodolph : They say he is leagued with the "black bands" who Ravage the frontier.



And will you believe

The world?



In this case- yes.

I thought you knew it better than to take

An accusation for a sentence.

In any case,

Son ! but


I understand you; you refer to
My destiny has so involved about me
Her spider web, that I can only flutter
Like the poor fly, but break it not. Take heed,
Ulric; you have seen to what the passions led me:
Twenty long years of misery and famine [chance,
Quench'd them not - twenty thousand more, per-
Hereafter (or even here in moments which
Might date for years, did Anguish make the dial)
May not obliterate or expiate


The madness and dishonour of an instant.
Ulric, be warn'd by a father! - I was not
By mine, and you behold me!


I behold The prosperous and beloved Siegendorf, Lord of a prince's appanage, and honour'd By those he rules and those he ranks with. Sieg.

Ah! Why wilt thou call me prosperous, while I fear For thee? Beloved, when thou lovest me not! All hearts but one may beat in kindness for meBut if my son's is cold!


Who dare say that?

Sieg. None else but I, who see it-feel it-keener Than would your adversary, who dared say so, Your sabre in his heart! But mine survives The wound.

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Be leader of such, I would hope: at once
To wean thee from the perils of thy youth
And haughty spirit, I have thought it well
That thou shouldst wed the lady Ida-more
As thou appear'st to love her.



I have said

I will obey your orders, were they to
Unite with Hecate-can a son say more?

Sieg. He says too much in saying this.
The nature of thine age, nor of thy blood,
Nor of thy temperament, to talk so coolly,
Or act so carelessly, in that which is
The bloom or blight of all men's happiness
(For Glory's pillow is but restless if
Love lay not down his cheek there): some strong bias,
Some master fiend is in thy service to
Misrule the mortal who believes him slave,
And makes his every thought subservient; else
Thou 'dst say at once-"I love young Ida, and
Will wed her:" or, "I love her not, and all
The powers of earth shall never make me.".
Would I have answer'd.


Sir, you wed for love.

Sieg. I did, and it has been my only refuge In many miseries.

Which miseries
Had never been but for this love-match.

Against your age and nature!
E'er answer'd thus till now?

Against your own example?
Boyish sophist !
In a word, do you love, or love not, Ida?
Ulr. What matters it, if I am ready to
Obey you in espousing her?

It is not



Who at twenty

Did you not warn me


As far As you feel, nothing, but all life for her. She's young-all beautiful-adores you-is Endow'd with qualities to give happiness, Such as rounds common life into a dream Of something which your poets cannot paint, And (if it were not wisdom to love virtue) For which Philosophy might barter Wisdom; And giving so much happiness, deserves A little in return. I would not have her Break her heart for a man who has none to break; Or wither on her stalk like some pale rose Deserted by the bird she thought a nightingale, According to the Orient tale. She is

Ulr. The daughter of dead Stralenheim, your fot: I'll wed her, ne'ertheless; though, to say truth, Just now I am not violently transported In favour of such unions.

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