SCENE I.A Temple of the Druids.
Enter a Messenger.
Mess. Prepare there for the sacrifice! the queen comes.
Music. Enter in solemnity the Druids singing: the second Daughter strewing flowers; then Bonduca,
CARATACH, NENNIUS, and others.
Bond. Ye powerful gods of Britain, hear our prayers;
Hear us, ye great revengers; and this day
from our swords, doubt from our valours;
Double the sad remembrance of our wrongs
In every breast; the
vengeance due to those
Make infinite and endless! On our pikes
This day pale Terror sit, horrors and
Upon our executions; claps of thunder
Hang on our armed carts; and fore our troops
Death; Shame beyond these attend em!
Rise from the dust, ye relics of the dead,
Whose noble deeds
our holy Druids sing;
Oh, rise, ye valiant bones! let not base earth
Oppress your honours, whilst the pride
Treads on your stocks, and wipes out all your stories!
Nen. Thou great Tiranes, whom our sacred priests,
Armed with dreadful thunder, place on high
the rest of the immortal gods,
Send thy consuming fires and deadly bolts,
And shoot em home; stick in
each Roman heart
A fear fit for confusion; blast their spirits,
Dwell in em to destruction; through their phalanx
as thou strikest a proud tree; shake their bodies,
Make their strengths totter, and their topless fortunes
and reel to ruin! 1 Daugh. Oh, thou god,
Thou feared god, if ever to thy justice
Insulting wrongs, and
ravishments of women,
(Women derived from thee) their shames, the sufferings
Of those that daily filld
With virgin incense, have access, now hear me!
Now snatch thy thunder up, now on these
Despisers of thy power, of us defacers,
Revenge thyself; take to thy killing anger,
To make thy
great work full, thy justice spoken,
An utter rooting from this blessed isle
Of what Rome is or has been!
Bond. Give me more incense!
The gods are deaf and drowsy, no happy flame
Rises to raise our thoughts.
Pour on. 2 Daugh. See, Heaven,
And all you powers that guide us, see and shame,
We kneel so long
for pity. Oer your altars,
Since tis no light oblation that you look for,
No incense-offering, will I hang mine
And as I wear these stones with hourly weeping,
So will I melt your powers into compassion.
tear for Prosutagus my brave father;
(Ye gods, now think on Rome!) this for my mother,
And all her miseries; yet
see, and save us!
But now ye must be open-eyed. See, Heaven,
Oh, see thy showers stolen from thee; our
Oh, sister, our dishonours! Can ye be gods,
And these sins smotherd?
[A smoke from the altar.
Bond. The fire takes.
Car. It does so,
But no flame rises. Cease your fretful prayers,
Your whinings, and your tame petitions;
gods love courage armd with confidence,
And prayers fit to pull them down: Weak tears
hearts, the dull twins of cold spirits,
They sit and smile at. Hear how I salute em:
Divine Andate, thou who holdst the reins
Of furious battles, and disorderd war,
And proudly rollst thy
swarty chariot wheels
Over the heaps of wounds and carcasses,
Sailing through seas of blood; thou sure-
Give us this day good hearts, good enemies,
Good blows o both sides, wounds that
fear or flight
Can claim no share in; steel us both with angers
And warlike executions fit thy viewing;
Rome put on her best strength, and thy Britain,
Thy little Britain, but as great in fortune,
Meet her as strong
as she, as proud, as daring!
And then look on, thou red-eyed god; who does best
Reward with honour; who
despair makes fly,
Unarm for ever, and brand with infamy!
Grant this, divine Andate! tis but justice;
my first blow thus on thy holy altar
I sacrifice unto thee.
[A flame arises.