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PROLOGUE.
SPOKEN AT EDINBURGH.

In days of classic fame, when Persia's Lord
Oppos’d his millions to the Grecian sword,
Flourish'd the state of Athens, small her storey
Rugged her soil, and rocky was her shore,
Like Caledonia's: yet she gain'd a name
That stands unrivaľd in the rolls of fame.

Such proud pre-eminence not valour gave,
(For who than Sparta's dauntless sons more brave?)
But learning, and the love of every art,
That virgin Pallas and the Muse impart.

Above the rest the Tragic Muse admir'd Each Attic breast with noblest passions

fir’d. In peace their poets with their heroes shard Glory, the hero's, and the bard's reward. The Tragic Muse each glorious record kept, And, o'er the kings she conquer'd, Athens wepe *.

Here let me cease; impatient for the scene, To you I need not praise the Tragic Queen: Oft has this audience soft compassion shown To woes of heroes, heroes not their own.

# See the Persai of Æschylus.

This night our scenes no common tear demand,
He comes, the hero of your native land!
DOUGLAS, a name thro' all the world renown'd,
A name that rouses like the trumpet's sound !
Oft have your fathers, prodigal of life,
A DOUGLAS follow'd thro' the bloody strife;
Hosts have been known at that dread name to yield,
And, Douglas dead, his name hath won the field.

Listen attentive to the various tale,
Mark if the author's kindred feelings fail;
Sway'd by alternate hopes, alternate fears,
He waits the test of your congenial tears.
If they shall flow, back to the muse he flies,
And bids your heroes in succession rise;
ColleEts the wand'ring warriors as they roam,
DOUGLAS assures them of a welcome home.

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DOUGLAS.

ACT I. SCENE I.

The Court of a Castle, surrounded with Woods. Enter Lady

RANDOLPH.

Lady Randolph.
Ye woods and wilds, whose melancholy gloom
Accords with my soul's sadness, and draws forth
The voice of sorrow from my bursting heart,
Farewel a while: I will not leave you long;
For in your shades I deem some spirit dwells,
Who from the chiding stream, or groaning oak,
Still hears and answers to Matilda's moan.
Oh, Douglas! Douglas ! if departed ghosts
Are e’er permitted to review this world,
Within the circle of that wood thou art,
And with the passion of immortals hear'st
My lamentation: hear'st thy wretched wife
Weep for her husband slain, her infant lost.
My brother's timeless death I seem to mourn
Who perish'd with thee on this fatal day.---

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To thee I lift my voice; to thee address
The plaint which mortal ear has never heard.
O disregard me not; tho' I am call'd
Another's now, my heart is wholly thine.
Incapable of change, affection lies
Buried, my Douglas, in thy bloody grave.
But Randolph comes, whom fate has made my lord,
To chide my anguish, and defraud the dead.

Enter Lord RANDOLPH.
Again these weeds of woe ! say, dost thou well
To feed a passion which consumes thy life?
The living claim some duty; vainly thou
Bestow'st thy cares upon the silent dead.

Lady R. Silent, alas ! is he for whom I mourn: Childless, without memorial of his name, He only now in my remembrance lives. “ This fatal day stirs my time-settled sorrow, “ Troubles afresh the fountain of my heart. Lord R. When was it pure of sadness! These

black weeds “ Express the wonted colour of thy mind, “ For ever dark and dismal. Seven long years “ Are pass’d, since we were join'd by sacred ties : “ Clouds all the while have hung upon thy brow, “ Nor broke, nor parted by one gleam of joy." Time, that wears out the trace of deepest anguish, “ As the sea smoothes the prints made in the sand," Has pass'd o'er thee in vain.

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