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FROM THE FAUST OF GOETHE.

PROLOGUE IN HEAVEN.

Enter MEPHISTOPHELES.

The LORD and the Host of Heaven.

MEPHISTOPHELES.

Enter Three Archangels.

RAPHAEL
The sun makes music as of old

Amid the rival spheres of Heaven,
On its predestined circle rolled

With thunder speed: the Angels even Draw strength from gazing on its glance,

Though none its meaning fathom may ;The world's unwithered countenance

Is bright as at creation's day.

As thou, O Lord, once more art kind enough
To interest thyself in our affairs
And ask, “ How goes it with you there below !”
And as indulgently at other times
Thou tookedst not my visits in ill part,
Thou seest me here once more among thy household.
Though I should scandalize this company,
You will excuse me if I do not talk
In the high style which they think fashionable;
My pathos certainly would make you laugh too,
Had you not long since given over laughing.
Nothing know I to say of suns and worlds ;
I observe only how men plague themselves ;-
The little god o' the world keeps the same stamp.
As wonderful as on creation's day :-
A little better would he live, hadst thou
Not given him a glimpse of Heaven's light
Which he calls reason, and employs it only
To live more beastily than any beast.

GABRIEL

And swift and swift, with rapid lightness,

The adorned Earth spins silently, Alternating Elysian brightness

With deep and dreadful night; the sea Foams in broad billows from the deep

Up to the rocks; and rocks and ocean, Onward, with spheres which never sleep,

Are hurried in eternal motion.

MICHAEL
And tempests in contention roar

From land to sea, from sea to land; And, raging, weave a chain of power

Which girds the earth as with a band. A flashing desolation there

Flames before the thunder's way; But thy servants, Lord, revere

The gentle changes of thy day.

GABRIEL
And swift, and inconceivably swift
The adornment of carth winds itself round,
And exchanges Paradise-clearness
With deep dreadful night.
The sea foams in broad waves
From its deep bottom up to the rocks,
And rocks and sea are tort on together
In the eternal swift course of the spheres.

MICHAEL
And storms roar in emulation
From sea to land, from land to sea,
And make, raging, a chain
Of deepest operation round about.
There flames a flashing destruction
Before the path of the thunderbolt.
But thy servants, Lord, revere
The gentle alternations of thy day.

CHORUS OF THE THREE.

The Angels draw strength from thy glance,

Though no one comprehend thee may:Thy world's unwithered countenance

Is bright as on creation’s day.*

CHORUS.

RAPHAEL. The sun sounds, according to ancient custom, In the song of emulation of his brother-spheres, And its fore-written circle Fulfils with a step of thunder. Its countenance gives the Angels strength, Though no one can fathom it. The incredible high works Are excellent as at the first day.

Thy countenance gives the Angels strength,
Though none can comprehend thee:
And all thy lofty works

Are excellent as at the first day. Such is the literal translation of this astonishing Chorus: it is impossible to represent in another language the melody of the versification ; even the volatile strength and delicacy of the ideas escape in the crucible of translation, and the reader is surprised to find a caput mortuum.-Author's Note.

THE LORD.

With reverence to your Lordship be it spoken, And, if I lose, then 'tis your turn to crow;
He's like one of those long-legged grasshoppers Enjoy your triumph then with a full breast.
Who flits and jumps about, and sings for ever Ay; dust shall he devour, and that with pleasure,
The same old song i’ the grass. There let him lie, Like my old paramour, the famous Snake.
Burying his nose in every heap of dung.
THE LORD.

Pray come here when it suits you; for I never
Have you no more to say? Do you come here Had much dislike for people of your sort.
Always to scold, and cavil, and complain? And, among all the Spirits who rebelled,
Seems nothing ever right to you on earth? The knave was ever the least tedious to me.

The active spirit of man soon sleeps, and soon
MEPHISTOPHELES.

He seeks unbroken quiet; therefore I
No, Lord; I find all there, as ever, bad at best.
Even I am sorry for man’s days of sorrow;

Have given him the Devil for a companion, I could myself almost give up the pleasure

Who may provoke him to some sort of work,

And must create for ever.- But ye, pure Of plaguing the poor things.

Children of God, enjoy eternal beauty ;

Let that which ever operates and lives
Knowest thou Faust? Clasp you within the limits of its love;

And seize with sweet and melancholy thoughts

The floating phantoms of its loveliness. The Doctor ?

[Heaven closcs ; the Archangels exeunt.

THE LORD.

MEPHISTOPHELES.

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THE LORD.

MEPHISTOPHELES.

FAUST.

THE LORD.

As long

The Hartz Mountain, a desolate Country.
Though he now serves me in a cloud of error,
I will soon lead him forth to the clear day.

FAUST, MEPHISTOPHELES.
When trees look green, full well the gardener knows
That fruits and blooms will deck the coming year.

Would you not like a broomstick? As for me
MEPHISTOPHELES.

I wish I had a good stout ram to ride ;
What will you bet ?—now I am sure of winning, For we are still far from th' appointed place.
Only observe you give me full permission
To lead him softly on my path.

This knotted staff is help enough for me,
Whilst I feel fresh upon my legs. What good

Is there in making short a pleasant way?
As he shall live upon the earth, so long

To creep along the labyrinths of the vales, Is nothing unto thee forbidden.—Man

And climb those rocks, where ever-babbling springs Must err till he has ceased to struggle.

Precipitate themselves in waterfalls,

In the true sport that seasons such a path.
MEPHISTOPHELES,

Thanks.

Already Spring kindles the birchen spray, And that is all I ask; for willingly

And the hoar pines already feel her breath :

Shall she not work also within our limbs?
I never make acquaintance with the dead.
The full fresh cheeks of youth are food for me,

MEPHISTOPHELES.
And if a corpse knocks, I am not at home.

Nothing of such an influence do I feel. For I am like a cat-I like to play

My body is all wintry, and I wish A little with the mouse before I eat it.

The flowers upon our path were frost and snow.

But see, how melancholy rises now, Well, well, it is permitted thee. Draw thou

Dimly uplifting her belated beam, His spirit from its springs; as thou find'st power,

The blank unwelcome round of the red moon, Seize him and lead him on thy downward path;

And gives so bad a light, that every step And stand ashamed when failure teaches thee

Onestumbles'gainst some crag. With your permisThat a good man, even in his darkest longings,

I'll call an Ignis-fatuus to our aid:

[sion Is well aware of the right way.

I see one yonder burning jollily.

Halloo, my friend ! may I request that you
MEPHISTOPHELES.

Would favour us with your bright company ?

Well and good. Why should you blaze away there to no purpose ? I am not in much doubt about my bet,

Pray be so good as light us up this way.

THE LORD.

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FAUST, MEPHISTOPHELES, and IGNIS-FATUUs in allernate

Chorus
The limits of the sphere of dream,

The bounds of true and false, are past.
Lead us on, thou wandering Gleam,

Lead us onward, far and fast,

To the wide, the desert waste.
But see, how swift advance and shift

Trees behind trees, row by row,
How, clift by clift, rocks bend and lift

Their frowning foreheads as we go.
The giant-snouted crags, ho ! ho !
How they snort, and how they blow!

AyAnd strangely through the solid depth below A melancholy light, like the red dawn, Shoots from the lowest gorge of the abyss Of mountains, lighting hitherward; there, rise Pillars of smoke ; here, clouds float gently by ; Here the light burns soft as the enkindled air, Or the illumined dust of golden flowers ; And now it glides like tender colours spreading ; And now bursts forth in fountains from the

earth;

And now it winds one torrent of broad light,
Through the far valley with a hundred veins ;
And now once more within that narrow corner
Masses itself into intensest splendour.
And near us see sparks spring out of the ground,
Lihe golden sand scattered upon the darkness;
The pinnacles of that black wall of mountains
That hems us in are kindled.

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Through the mossy sods and stones,
Stream and streamlet hurry down,
A rushing throng! A sound of song
Beneath the vault of Heaven is blown !
Sweet notes of love, the speaking tones
Of this bright day, sent down to say
That Paradise on Earth is known,
Resound around, beneath, above,
All we hope and all we love
Finds a voice in this blithe strain,
Which wakens hill and wood and rill,
And vibrates far o'er field and vale,
And which Echo, like the tale
Of old times, repeats again.
To-whoo ! to-whoo ! near, nearer now
The sound of song, the rushing throng!
Are the screech, the lapwing and the jay,
All awake as if 'twere day?
See, with long legs and belly wide,
A salamander in the brake !
Every root is like a snake,
And along the loose hill side,
With strange contortions through the night,
Curls, to seize or to affright;
And animated, strong, and many,
They dart forth polypus-antennæ,
To blister with their poison spume
The wanderer. Through the dazzling gloom
The many-coloured mice that thread
The dewy turf beneath our tread,
In troops each other's motions cross,
Through the heath and through the moss;
And in legions intertangled,
The fire-flies flit, and swarm, and throng,
Till all the mountain depths are spangled.

Cling tightly to the old ribs of the crag.
Beware! for if with them thou warrest
In their fierce flight towards the wilderness,
Their breath will sweep thee into dust, and drag
Thy body to a grave in the abyss.

A cloud thickens the night.
Hark! how the tempest crashes through the forest!

The owls fly out in strange affright;
The columns of the evergreen palaces

Are split and shattered ;
The roots creak, and stretch, and groan ;
And ruinously overthrown,
The trunks are crushed and shattered
By the fierce blast's unconquerable stress.
Over each other crack and crash they all
In terrible and intertangled fall ;
And through the ruins of the shaken mountain

The airs hiss and howl-
It is not the voice of the fountain,

Nor the wolf in his midnight prowl.

Dost thou not hear ?

Strange accents are ringing
Aloft, afar, anear ;

The witches are singing !
The torrent of a raging wizard's song
Streams the whole mountain along.

BOTH CHORUSSES.
The wind is still, the stars are fled,
The melancholy moon is dead ;
The magic notes, like spark on spark,
Drizzle, whistling through the dark.

Come away!

VOICES BELOW.

Stay, oh stay!

CHORUS OF WITCHES.
The stubble is yellow, the corn is green,
Now to the Brocken the witches go ;
The mighty multitude here may be seen
Gathering, wizard and witch, below.
Sir Urean is sitting aloft in the air ;
Hey over stock! and hey over stone !
'Twixt witches and incubi, what shall be done?
Tell it who dare! tell it who dare !

A VOICE.

Upon a sow-swine, whose farrows were nine,
Old Baubo rideth alone.

VOICES ABOVE.
Out of the crannies of the rocks
Who calls?

VOICES BELOW.
Oh, let me join your flocks!
I, three hundred years have striven
To catch your skirt and mount to Heaven,-
And still in vain. Oh, might I be
With company akin to me!

BOTH CHORUSSES.
Some on a ram and some on a prong,
On poles and on broomsticks we flutter along;
Forlorn is the wight who can rise not to-night.

A HALF WITCH BELOW.
I have been tripping this many an hour :
Are the others already so far before ?
No quiet at home, and no peace abroad !
And less methinks is found by the road.

CHORUS.
Honour her to whom honour is due,
Old mother Baubo, honour to you !
An able sow with old Baubo upon her,
Is worthy of glory, and worthy of honour !
The legion of witches is coming behind,
Darkening the night and outspeeding the wind-

A VOICE.

Which way comest thou ?

CHORUS OF WITCHES.

A VOICE.

Over Ilsenstein ;
The owl was awake in the white moon-shine;
I saw her at rest in her downy nest,
And she stared at me with her broad bright eyne.

Come onward, away! aroint thee, aroint !
A witch to be strong must anoint-anoint-
Then every trough will be boat enough ;
With a rag for a sail we can sweep through the sky,
Who flies not to-night, when means he to fly?

VOICES.

And you may now as well take your course on to

Hell,
Since you ride by so fast on the headlong blast.

BOTH CHORUSSES.
We cling to the skirt, and we strike on the ground;
Witch-legions thicken around and around;
Wizard-swarms cover the heath all over.

[They descend.

MEPHISTOPHELES.

A VOICE.

CHORUS OF WITCHES.

Come away

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She dropt poison upon me as I past.

What thronging, dashing, raging, rustling !
Here are the wounds-

What whispering, babbling, hissing, bustling !
What glimmering, spurting, stinking, burning !

As Heaven and earth were overturning.
! come along!

There is a true witch element about us ; The way is wide, the way is long,

Take hold on me, or we shall be divided : But what is that for a Bedlam throng ?

Where are you? Stick with the prong, and scratch with the broom.

FAUST (from a distance). The child in the cradle lies strangled at home,

Here !
And the mother is clapping her hands.-

MEPHISTOPHELES.
SEMI-CHORUS OF WIZARDS I.

What!
We glide in | I must exert my authority in the house.
Like snails when the women are all away ; Place for young Voland ! Pray make way, good
And from a house once given over to sin

people. Woman has a thousand steps to stray.

Take hold on me, doctor, and with one step
Let us escape from this unpleasant crowd :

They are too mad for people of my sort.
A thousand steps must a woman take,

Just there shines a peculiar kind of lightWhere a man but a single spring will make. Something attracts me in those bushes.-Come

This way; we shall slip down there in a minute. Come with us, come with us, from Felunsee.

FAUST.
Spirit of Contradiction ! Well, lead on-

'T'were a wise feat indeed to wander out
With what joy would we fly through the upper sky; Into the Brocken upon May-day night,
Weare washed, weare'noịnted, stark naked are we! And then to isolate oneself in scorn,
But our toil and our pain are for ever in vain. Disgusted with the humours of the time.

SEMI-CHORUS II.

VOICES ABOVE.

VOICES BELOW.

MEPHISTOPHELES. See yonder, round a many-coloured flame A merry-club is huddled all together : Even with such little people as sit there One would not be alone.

FAUST.

Would that I were Up yonder in the glow and whirling smoke Where the blind million rush impetuously To meet the evil ones ; there might I solve Many a riddle that torments me!

MINISTER,

Now-a-days People assert their rights ;, they go too far ;

But, as for me, the good old times I praise. Then we were all in all ; 'twas something worth

One's while to be in place and wear a star; That was indeed the golden age on earth.

PARVENU *. We too are active, and we did and do What we ought not perhaps ; and yet we now Will seize, whilst all things are whirled round and

round, A spoke of Fortune's wheel, and keep our ground.

AUTHOR,

MEPHISTOPHELES.

Yet Many a riddle there is tied anew Inextricably. Let the great world rage ! We will stay here safe in the quiet dwellings. 'Tis an old custom. Men have ever built Their own small world in the great world of all. I see young witches naked there, and old ones Wisely attired with greater decency. Be guided now by me, and you shall buy A pound of pleasure with a dram of trouble. I hear them tune their instruments—one must Get used to this damned scraping. Come, I'll

Who now can taste a treatise of deep sense
And ponderous volume ? 'Tis impertinence
To write what none will read, therefore will I
To piease the young and thoughtless people try.
MEPHISTOPHELES. (Who at once appears to have

grown very old.)
I find the people ripe for the last day,
Since I last came up to the wizard mountain ;
And as my little cask runs turbid now,
So is the world drained to the dregs.

lead you

PEDLAR-WITCH.

Among them ; and what there you do and see, As a fresh compact 'twixt us two shall be.

How say you now? this space is wide enough-
Look forth, you cannot see the end of it-
A hundred bonfires burn in rows, and they
Who throng around them seem innumerable :
Dancing and drinking, jabbering, making love,
And cooking, are at work. Now tell me, friend,
What is there better in the world than thris ?

FAUST.

Look here, Gentlemen ; do not hurry on so fast, And lose the chance of a good pennyworth. I have a pack full of the choicest wares Of every sort, and yet in all my bundle Is nothing like what may be found on earth ; Nothing that in a moment will make rich Men and the world with fine malicious mischief. There is no dagger drunk with blood ; no bowl From which consuming poison may be drained By innocent and healthy lips; no jewel, The price of an abandoned maiden's shame ; No sword which cuts the bond it cannot loose, Or stabs the wearer's enemy in the back; No

MEPHISTOPHELES. Gossip, you know little of these times. What has been, has been ; what is done, is past. They shape themselves into the innovations They breed, and innovation drags us with it. The torrent of the crowd sweeps over us ; You think to impel, and are yourself impelled.

In introducing us, do you assume The character of wizard or of devil ?

MEPHISTOPHELES.

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In truth, I generally go about
In strict incognito ; and yet one likes
To wear one's orders upon gala days.
I have no ribbon at my knee ; but here
At home the cloven foot is honourable.
See you that snail there ?—she comes creeping up,
And with her feeling eyes hath smelt out some-

thing: I could not, if I would, mask myself here. Come now we'll go about from fire to fire : I'll be the pimp, and you shall be the lover. (To some old Women, who are sitting round a heap

of glimmering coals.
Old gentlewomen, what do you do out here?
You ought to be with the young rioters
Right in the thickest of the revelry-
But every one is best content at home.

MEPHISTOPHELES.

Mark her well. It is

Lilith.

FAUST.

Who?

GENERAL
Who dare confide in right or a just claim ?

So much as I had done for them! and nowWith women and the people 'tis the same,

Youth will stand foremost ever,-age may go To the dark grave unhonoured.

MEPHISTOPHELES. Lilith, the first wife of Adam. Beware of her fair hair, for she excels All women in the magic of her locks ; And when she winds them round a young man's

neck, She will not ever set him free again.

* A sort of fundholder.

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