Old Fortunatus – Act Four Chorus

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Gentles, if ere you have beheld the passions,
The combats of his soul who being a king,
By some usurping hand hath been depos’d
From all his royalties; even such a soul,
Such eyes, such heart swol’n big with sighs and tears,
The star-cross’d son of Fortunatus wears.
Though thoughts crown’d him a monarch in the morn,
Yet now he’s bandied by the seas in scorn,
From wave to wave; his golden treasures spoil
Makes him in desperate language to entreat
The winds to spend their fury on his life.
But they, being mild in tyranny, or scorning
To triumph in a wretch’s funeral,
Toss him to Cyprus.  Oh, what treachery
Cannot this serpent gold entice us to?
He robs his brother of the Soldan’s prize,
And having got his wish, the wishing hat,
He does not, as he vow’d, seek misery,
But hopes by that to win his purse again,
And in that hope from Cyprus is he fled.
If your swift thoughts clap on their wonted wings,
In Genoa may you take this fugitive,
Where having cozened many jewellers,
To England back he comes, step but to court,
And there, disguis’d, you find him bargaining
For jewels with the beauteous Agripyne,
Who wearing at her side the virtuous purse,
He clasps her in his arms and as a raven,
Griping the tender-hearted nightingale,
So flies he with her, wishing, in the air,
To be transported to some wilderness.
Imagine this the place; see here they come.
Since they themselves have tongues, mine shall be dumb.                 [Exit.

Proceed to the next scene

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