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MOSCON.

I cannot bring my mind, Great as my haste to see the festival Certainly is, to leave you, Sir, without Just saying some three or four hundred words. How is it possible that on a day Of such festivity, you can bring your mind To come forth to a solitary country With three or four old books, and turn your back On all this mirth ?

CLARIN

My master 's in the right; There is not anything more tiresome Than a procession day, with troops of men, , And dances, and all that.

MOSCON.

From first to last, Clarin, you are a temporizing flatterer; You praise not what you feel, but what he does ;Toadeater!

CLARIN.

You lie-under a mistake-
For this is the most civil sort of lie
That can be given to a man's face. I now
Say what I think.

CYPRIAN.

Enough, you foolish fellows, Puffed up with your own doting ignorance, You always take the two sides of one question. Now go, and as I said, return for me When night falls, veiling in its shadows wide This glorious fabric of the universe.

MOSCON.

How happens it, although you can maintain

VOL. III.

Z

The folly of enjoying festivals,
That yet you go there?

CLARIN.

Nay, the consequence Is clear :-who ever did what he advises Others do?

MOSCON.

Would that my feet were wings, So would I fly to Livia.

E.cit.

CLARIN

To speak truth, Livia is she who has surprised my heart; But he is more than half way there.—Soho ! Livia, I come; good sport, Livia, soho!

[Exit.

CYPRIAN.

Now since I am alone, let me examine
The question which has long disturbed my mind
With doubt, since first I read in Plinius
The words of mystic import and deep sense
In which he defines God. My intellect
Can find no God with whom these marks and signs
Fitly agree.

It is a hidden truth
Which I must fathom.

[Reads.

Enter the Devil, as a fine Gentleman.

DÆMON.

Search even as thou wilt, But thou shalt never find what I can hide.

CYPRIAN.

What noise is that among the boughs ? Who moves ? What art thou ?

1

DÆMON.

'Tis a foreign gentleman.
Even from this morning I have lost my way
In this wild place, and my poor horse, at last
Quite overcome, has stretched himself upon
The enamelled tapestry of this mossy mountain,
And feeds and rests at the same time.
Upon my way to Antioch

upon

business Of some importance, but wrapt up in cares (Who is exempt from this inheritance ?) I parted from my company, and lost My way, and lost my servants and my comrades.

I was

CYPRIAN.

'Tis singular, that, even within the sight
Of the high towers of Antioch, you could lose
Your way. Of all the avenues and green paths
Of this wild wood there is not one but leads,
As to its centre, to the walls of Antioch;
Take which you will you cannot miss your road.

DÆMON.

And such is ignorance! Even in the sight
Of knowledge it can draw no profit from it.
But, as it still is early, and as I
Have no acquaintances in Antioch,
Being a stranger there, I will even wait
The few surviving hours of the day,
Until the night shall conquer it. I see,
Both by your dress and by the books in which
You find delight and company, that

you
Are a great student;—for
Much sympathy with such pursuits.

my part, I feel

CYPRIAN.

Have you

Studied much ?

DÆMON.

No ;-and yet I know enough Not to be wholly ignorant.

CYPRIAN.

Pray, Sir, What science may you

know?

DAEMON

Many

CYPRIAN.

Alas!

Much pains must we expend on one alone,
And even then attain it not;——but you
Have the presumption to assert that you
Know many without study.

DEMON.

And with truth. For, in the country whence I come, sciences Require no learning,—they are known.

CYPRIAN.

Oh, would
I were of that bright country! for in this
The more we study, we the more discover
Our ignorance.

DÆMON.

It is so true that I Had so much arrogance as to oppose The chair of the most high Professorship, And obtained many votes, and though I lost, The attempt was still more glorious than the failure Could be dishonourable: if you

believe not, Let us refer it to dispute respecting That which you know best, and although I

Know not the opinion you maintain, and though It be the true one, I will take the contrary.

CYPRIAN.

The offer gives me pleasure. I am now
Debating with myself upon a passage
Of Plinius, and my mind is racked with doubt
To understand and know who is the God
Of whom he speaks.

DÆMON.

It is a passage, if I recollect it right, couched in these words: “God is one supreme goodness, one pure essence, One substance, and one sense, all sight, all hands."

CYPRIAN.

'Tis true.

DEMON.

What difficulty find you here?

CYPRIAN.

I do not recognize among the Gods
The God defined by Plinius : if he must
Be supreme goodness, even Jupiter
Is not supremely good; because we see
His deeds are evil, and his attributes
Tainted with mortal weakness. In what manner
Can supreme goodness be consistent with
The passions of humanity ?

DÆMON.

The wisdom Of the old world masked with the names of Gods The attributes of Nature and of Man ; A sort of popular philosophy.

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