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Of Acts indeed heroick, far beyond
The Sons of Anack, famous now and blaz'd,
Fearless of danger, like a petty God,
I walk'd about, admir'd of all and dreaded
On hoftile ground, none daring my affront.
Then fwoll'n with pride into the fnare I fell
Of fair fallacious looks, venereal trains,
Soften'd with plenfure and voluptuous life;
At length to lay my head and hallow'd pledge
Of all my ftrength in the lafcivious lap
Of a deceitful Concubine, who shore me,
Like a tame Wether, all my precious fleece;
Then turn'd me out ridiculous, defpoil'd,
Shav'n and difarm'd among mine enemies.
Chor. Defire of wine and all delicious drinks,
Which many a famous warrior overturns,
Thou couldst reprefs; nor did the dancing Ruby
Sparkling, out pour'd, the flavour of the smell,
Or tafte, that.cheers the hearts of Gods or Men,
Allure thee from the cool Crystalline stream.
Samy. Where ever fountain or fresh current flow'd
Against the Eaftern ray, tranflucent, pure,
With touch ethereal of Heav'ns fiery rod,
I drank; from the clear milky juice allaying
'Thirst, and refresht; nor envy'd them the grape,
Whofe heads that turbulent liquor fills with fumes.
Chor. O madness, to think use of strongest wines And strongest drinks our chief fupport of health, When God with these forbidd'n made choice to rear His mighty Champion, ftrong above compare; Whofe drink was only from the liquid brook!
Sam. But what avail'd this temp'rance, not compleat
Againit another object more enticing?
What boots it at one gate to make defence,
And at another to let in the Foe,
Effeminately vanquish'd? by which means,
Now blind, difheirten'd, fham'd, difhonour'd, quell'd,
To what can I be useful, wherein ferve
My Nation, and t'e work from Heav'n impos'd?
But to fit idle on the Houfhold-hearth,
A burd'nous drone; to vifitants a gaze,
Or pity'd object; thefe redundant locks
Robuftious to no purpose cluftring down,
Vain monument of ftrength: till length of years
And fedentary numbnefs craze my limbs,
To a contemptible old Age obfcure.
Here rather let me drudge and earn my bread,
Till vermin or the draff of fervile food
Confume me, and oft invocated death
Haften the welcome end of all my pains.
Man. Wilt thou then ferve Philiftians with that gift
Which was exprefsly giv'n thee to annoy them?
Better at home lie bed-rid, not only idle,
Inglorious, unemploy'd, with age out-worn.
But God, who caus'd a Fountain at thy Pray'r
From the dry ground to fpring, thy thirst tallay
After the brunt of Battel, can as easie
Caufe light again within thy eyes to spring,
Wherewith to ferve him better than thou haft:
And I perfuade me fo; why elfe this ftrength
Mirac'ious yet remaining in thofe locks?
His might continues in thee not for nought,
Nor fhall his wondrous gifts be fruftrate thus.
But yield to double darkness nigh at hand;
So much I feel my genial Spirits droop,
My hopes all flat, Nature within me seems ›
In all her functions weary of her felf;
Samf. All otherwife to me my thoughts portend; 590 That thefe dark Orbs no more fhall treat with light, Nor th' other light of life continue long,
My race of Glory run, and race of Shame,
And I fhall fhortly be with them that reft.
Man. Believe not thefe fuggeftions, which proceed
From anguish of the mind, and humours black,
That mingle with thy fancy. I however
Muft not omit a Father's timely care
To profecute the means of thy deliverance
By ranfom, or how elfe: mean while be calm,
And healing words from these thy friends admit.
Samf. O that torment should not be confin'd
To the body's wounds and fores,
With maladies innumerable
In heart, head, breaft, and reins;
But muft fecret paffage find
To th' inmoft mind;
There exercife all his fierce accidents,
And on her pureft fpirits prey,
As on entrails, joints and limbs,
With anfwerable pains, but more intense,
Though void of corporal fenfe!
My griefs not only pain me,
As a lingring disease,
But finding no redrefs, ferment and rage,
Nor lefs than wounds immedicable
Rankle, and fefter, and gangreen,
To black mortification.
Thoughts, my Tormenters arm'd with deadly ftings,
Mangle my apprehenfive tendereft parts,
Exafperate, exulcerate, and raise
Dire inflammation, which no cooling herb
Or medicinal liquor can affuage,
Nor breath of vernal Air from fnowy Alp..
Sleep hath forfook and giv'n me o'er
To death's benumming Opium, as my only cure;
Thence faintings, fwoonings of defpair,
And fenfe of Heav'ns defertion.
I was his nurfling once, and choice delight, "His deftin'd from the womb,
Promis'd by Heav'nly meffage twice defcending.
Under his special eye
Abftemious I grew up, and thriv'd amain ;
He led me on to mightiest deeds,
Above the nerve of mortal arm,
Against the uncircumcis'd, our enemies :
But now hath caft me off as never known,
And to thofe cruel enemies,
Whom I by his appointment had provok'd,
Left me all helpless, with th' irreparable lofs
Of fight, referv'd alive to be repeated
The subject of their cruelty or fcorn.
Nor am I in the lift of them that hope;
Hopeless are all my evils, all remedilefs. -
This one Prayer yet remains, might I be heard,
No long petition, fp edy death,
The clofe of all my miferies, and the balm...
Chor. Many are the Sayings of the Wife In ancient and in modern books enroll'd, Extolling patience as the trueft fortitude; And to the bearing well of all calamities, All chances incident to man's frail life: Confolatories writ
But to th' afflicted in his pangs their found
Little prevails, or rather feems a tune
Harfh, and of diffonant mood from his complaint;
Unless he feel within
Some fource of confolation from above;
Secret refreshings, that repair his ftrength,,
And fainting Spirits uphold.
With ftudy'd argument, and much perfuafion fought,
Lenient of grief and anxious thought.
God of our Fathers! what is man!
That thou towards him with hand so various,
Or might I fay contrarious,
Temper'ft thy providence through his fhort courfe, 670
Not ev'nly, as thou rul❜st
Th' Angelick orders and inferior creatures mute,
Irrational and brute!
Nor do I name of men the common rout, "That wandring loose about,
Grow up and perish, as the fummer flie.
Heads without name no more remembred;
Bat fuch as thou haft folemnly elected,
With gifts and graces eminently adorn'd,
To fome great work, thy glory,
And peoples fafety, which in part they effect:
Yet toward thefe thus dignify'd, thou oft
Amidft their height of noon,
Changest thy countenance, and thy hand with no regard
Of higheft favours paft
From thee on them, or them to thee of fervice.
Of heathen and prophane, their carcaffes
To dogs and fowls a prey, or elfe captiv'd;
Or to th' unjust tribunals under change of times,
And condemnation of th' ingrateful multitude.
If these they 'fcape, perhaps in poverty
With fickness and difeafe thou bow'it them down,
Painful difeafes and deform'd,
Nor only doft degrade them, or remit
To life obfcur'd, which were a fair difmiffion,
But throw'ft them lower than thou didst exalt them high; Unfeemly falls. In human eye,
Top grievous for the trefpafs or omiffion;
Oft leav'ft them to the hoftile fword
In crude old age:
Though not difordinate, yet caufelefs fuff'ring
The punishment of diffolute days; in fine,
Juft or unjust, alike feem miferable,