Enter Gaspero, and Melitus
MelitusSir, you're the very friend I wish'd to meet with,I have a large discourse invites your earTo be an Auditor.
GasperoAnd what concerns it?
MelitusThe sadly thriving progress of the lovesBetween my Lord, the Prince, and that great Lady,Whose insolence, and never-yet-match'd Pride,Can by no Character be well exprest,But in her only name, the proud Erota.
GasperoAlas, Melitus, I should guess the bestSuccess your Prince could find from her, to beAs harsh as the event doth prove: but now'Tis not a time to pity passionate griefs,When a whole Kingdom in a manner lyesUpon its Death-Bed bleeding.
MelitusWho can tellWhether or no these plagues at onceHang over this unhappy Land for her sakeThat is a Monster in it?
GasperoHere's the miseryOf having a Child our Prince; else I presumeThe bold Venetians had not dar'd to attemptSo bloody an invasion.
MelitusYet I wonderWhy (Master Secretary) still the SenateSo almost superstitiously adoresGonzalo, the Venetian Lord, consideringThe outrage of his Countrymen--
GasperoThe SenateIs wise, and therein just, for this Gonzalo,Upon a Massacre performed at SeaBy the Admiral of Venice, on a MerchantOf Candy, when the cause was to be heardBefore the Senate there, in open CourtProfessed, that the cruelty the AdmiralHad shewed, deserved not only fine, but death;For Candy then, and Venice were at peace:Since when upon a motion in the Senate,For Conquest of our Land, 'tis known for certain,That only this Gonzalo dar'd to oppose it,His reason was, because it too much savour'dOf lawless and unjust ambition.The Wars were scarce begun, but he (in fearOf quarrels 'gainst his life) fled from his Country,And hither came, where (to confirm his truth)I know, (Melitus,) he out of his own store,Hath monied Cassilanes the General.
MelitusWhat, without other pledges than CassilanesBare promise of payment?
GasperoNo, it may beHe has some [pe]tty Lordship to retire to;But thus he hath done; now 'tis fit, Melitus,The Senate should be thankful, otherwiseThey should annihilate one of those LawsFor which this Kingdome is throughout the WorldUnfollowed and admired.
MelitusWhat Laws are those, Sir?Let me so much importune you.
GasperoYou shall,And they be worth your knowledge: briefly thus:Who e'r he be that can detect apparentlyAnother of ingratitude, for anyReceived Benefit, the Plaintiff mayRequire the Offenders life; unless he pleaseFreely and willingly to grant remission.
MelitusBy which strict Law, the Senate is in danger,Should they neglect Gonzalo?
GasperoRight, the LawPermits a like equality to Aliens,As to a home-bred Patriot.
MelitusPray Sir, the other?
GasperoKnow, Melitus,The elder Cretans flourished many years,In War, in Peace unparallel'd, and they(To spur heroic Spirits on to Vertue)Enacted that what man so ere he were,Did noblest in the field against his enemy,So by the general voice approv'd, and known,Might at his home-return, make his demandFor satisfaction, and reward....