The Noble Spanish Soldier – Act 5, Scene 3

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Enter QUEEN and MALATESTE.

 QUEEN
Must then his trull be once more sphere’d in court
To triumph in my spoils, in my eclipses?
And I like moping Juno sit, whilst Jove
Varies his lust into five hundred shapes
To steal to his whore’s bed?  No, Malateste,
Italian fires of jealousy burn my marrow;
For to delude my hopes, the lecherous king
Cuts out this robe of cunning marriage
To cover his incontinence, which flames
Hot, as my fury, in his black desires.
I am swoll’n big with child of vengeance now,
And till delivered, feel the throes of hell.

MALATESTE
Just is your indignation, high, and noble,
And the brave heat of a true Florentine;
For Spain trumpets abroad her interest
In the king’s heart, and with a black cloak draws
On every wall your scoff’d at injuries,
As one that has he refuse of her sheets,
And the sick autumn of the weakened king,
Where she drunk pleasures up in the full spring.

QUEEN
That, Malateste, that, that torrent wracks me;
But Hymen’s torch, held downward, shall drop out,
And for it, the mad furies swing their branks
About the bridal chamber.

MALATESTE
The priest that joins them,
Our twin-born malediction.

QUEEN
Loud may it speak.

MALATESTE
The herbs and flowers to strew the wedding way,
Be cypress, yew, cold colliquintida.

QUEEN
Henbane and poppy, and that magical weed
Which hags at midnight watch to catch the seed.

MALATESTE
To these our execrations, and what mischief
Hell can but hatch in a distracted brain,
I’ll be the executioner, though it look
So horrid it can fright e’en murder back.

QUEEN
Poison his whore today, for thou shalt wait
On the king’s cup, and when heated with wine
He calls to drink the bride’s health, marry her
Alive to a gaping grave.

MALATESTE
At board?

QUEEN
At board.

MALATESTE
When she being guarded round about with friends,
Like a fair island, hem’d with rocks and seas,
What rescue shall I find?

QUEEN
Mine arms.  Dost faint?
Stood all the Pyrenean hills that part
Spain and our country, on each other’s shoulders,
Burning with Ætnean flame, yet thou shouldst on
As being my steal of resolution,
First striking sparkles from my flinty breast.
Wert thou to catch the horses of the sun
Fast by their bridles, and to turn back day,
Wouldst thou not do’t, base coward, to make way
To the Italians second bliss, revenge?

MALATESTE
Were my bones threaten’d to the wheel of torture,
I’ll do’t.

Enter LOPEZ.

 QUEEN
A raven’s voice, and it likes me well.

LOPEZ
The king expects your presence.

MALATESTE
So, so, we come,
To turn this bride’s day to a day of doom.                                                         [Exeunt.

Proceed to the next scene.

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