Citation
Goethe's Works illustrated by the best German artists, Volume 3, Part 1

Material Information

Title:
Goethe's Works illustrated by the best German artists, Volume 3, Part 1
Creator:
Goethe, Johann Wolfgang von
Place of Publication:
Philadelphia, Penn.
Publisher:
G. Barrie
Publication Date:
Language:
English
Physical Description:
5 v. in 10 : ill. ; 30 cm.

Notes

General Note:
v. 1. The life of Goethe / by Hjalmar H. Boyesen ; Poems (Songs ; Familiar songs ; From Wilhelm Meister ; Ballads ; Antiques ; Elegies ; Epigrams ; The four seasons ; Sonnets ; Miscellaneous poems ; Art ; Parables ; Epigrams ; God und world ; West-Eastern Divan ; Hermann und Dorothea) -- v. 2. Faust ; Egmont ; The natural daughter ; The sorrows of young Werther -- v. 3. Goetz von Berlichingen ; Iphigenia in Tauris ; Torquato Tasso ; Clavigo ; Stella; The brother and sister ; A tale ; The good women ; Reynard the Fox -- v. 4. The recreations of the German emigrants ; Wilhelm Meister's apprenticeship -- v. 5. , pt. 1. Wilhelm Meister's travels --Elective affinities.

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Copyright [name of copyright holder or Creator or Publisher as appropriate]. Permission granted to University of Colorado Denver to digitize and display this item for non-profit research and educational purposes. Any reuse of this item in excess of fair use or other copyright exemptions requires permission of the copyright holder.
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Cr.JtJ







Maximilian. Emperor of Germany.
Goetz vox Berlichixgex, a free knight of the
empire.
Elizabeth, his wife.
Maria, his sister.
Charles, his sona hoy.
George, his page.
Bishop of Bamberg.
Adelbert vox Weislixgex, a free German
knight of the empire.
Adelaide vox Walldorf, widow of the Count
vox Walldorf.
Liebtraut, a courtier of the Bishop's.
Abbot of Fulda, residing at the Bishop's
court.
Olearius, a doctor of taws.
Brother Martix, a monk.
Hans vox Selbitz, j Free knights, in alli-
Fraxz von Sickingen, ) ante with Goetz.
Lerse, a trooper.
Francis, esquire to Weislixgex.
Female Attendant on Adelaide.
President, Accuser and Avenger of the Secret
Tribunal.
Metzi.er, ^
Silvers, |
Link, } Leaders of the insurgent peasantry.
Kohl,
Wild, J
Imperial Commissioners.
7wo Merchants of Nuremberg.
Magistrates of Ileilbronn.
Maximilian Stumf, a vassal of the Palsgrave.
An unknown.
JJ ride's father, ^
Bride, >- Peasants.
Bridegroom, )
Gypsy captain.
Gypsy mother and women.
Sticks and Wolf, gypsies.
Imperial captain.
Imperial officers.
Innkeeper.
Sentinel.
Sergeant-at-arms.
Imperial soldiersTroopers belonging to Goetz, to Sei.bitz, to Sickingen and to Weislingen
PeasantsGypsiesJudges of the Secret TribunalGaolersCourtiers, etc., etc., etc.
6




SCENE I..An Inn at Schwarzcnbcrg in
Franconia.
[Metzler and Sievers, two Swabian Peas-
ants, are seated at a tableAt the fire,
at some distance from than, two Troopers
from BambergThe Innkeeper.
Sievers. Hansel! Another cup of brandy
-and Christian measure.
Innkeeper. Thou art a Never-enough.
Metzler. (Apart to Sievers.) Repeat
that again about Berlichingen.The Bam-
bergers there are so angry they are almost
black in the face.
Sievers. Bambergers !What are they
about here ?
Metzler. Weislingen has been two days
up yonder at the castle with the Earlthey
are his attendantsthey came with him, I
(r
know not whence ; they are waiting for him
he is going back to Bamberg.
Sievers. Who is that Weislingen?
Metzler. The Bishop of Bambergs right
hand a powerful lord, who is lying in wait
to play Goetz some trick.
Sievers. Pie had better take care of him-
self.
Metzler. (Aside.) Prithee go on!
(Aloud.) How long is it since Goetz had a
new dispute with the bishop? I thought all
had been agreed and squared between them.
Sievers. Ay Agreement with priests !
When the bishop saw he could do no good,
and always got the worst of it, he pulled in
his horns, and made haste to patch up a truce
and honest Berlichingen yielded to an
absurd extent, as he always does when he has
the advantage.
Metzler. God bless him a worthy noble-
man .
Sievers. Only think Was it not shame-
7


ful ? They fell upon a page of his, to his no
small surprise; but they will soon be mauled
for that.
Metzler. Mow provoking that his last
stroke should have missed. He must have
been plaguily annoyed.
Sievers. I dont think anything has vexed
him so much lor a long time. Look you, all
had been calculated to a nicety; the time the
bishop would come from the bath, with how
many attendants, and which road; and had it
not been betrayed by some traitor, Goetz
would have blessed his bath for him, and
rubbed him dry.
First Trooper. What are you prating
there about our bishop; do you want to pick
a quarrel ?
Si evers. Mind your own affairs; you have
nothing to do with our table.
Second Trooper. Who taught you to
speak disrespectfully of our bishop?
Si evers. Am I bound to answer your ques-
tions?Look at the fool!
[ The first Trooper boxes his ears.
Metzler. Smash the rascal !
[ They attack each other.
Second Trooper. ( To Metzler.) Come
on if you dare
Innkeeper. (Separating them.) Will you i
be quiet ? Zounds Take yourself off if you j
have any scores to settle; in my house I will j
have order and decency. (He pushes the \
Troopers out ofi doors.)And what are you j
about, you jackasses? j
Metzler. No bad names, Hansel! or your :
sconce shall pay for it. Come, comrade, well
go and thrash those blackguards.
Enter two of Berlichingens Troopers.
First Trooper. Whats the matter?
Silvers. Ah Good-day, Peter !Good-
day, Veit!Whence come you?
Second Trooper. Mind you dont let out
whom we serve.
Si evers. (Whispering.) Then your master
Goetz isnt far off?
First Trooper. FIolcl your tongue!
Have you had a quarrel ?
Silvers. You must have met the fellows
withoutthey are Bambergers.
First Trooper. What brings them here?
Si evers. They escort Weislingen, who is
up yonder at the castle with the Earl.
First Trooper. Weislingen !
Second Trooper. (Aside to his compan-
ion.) Peter, that is grist to our mill. How
long has he been here ?
Metzler. Two daysbut he is off to-day,
as I heard one of his fellows say.
First Trooper. (Aside.) Did I not tell
you he was here ?We might have waited
yonder long enough. Come, Veit
Si evers. Help us first to drub the Bam-
bergers.
Second Trooper. There are already two
of youWe must awayFarewell !
[Exeunt both Troopers.
Silvers. Scurvy dogs, these troopers!
They wont strike a blow without pay.
Metzler. I could swear they have some-
thing in hand.Whom do they serve?
Si evers. I am not to tellthey serve
Goetz.
Metzler. So !Well, now well cudgel
those fellows outside. While I have a quarter-
staff I care not for their spits.
Si evers. If we durst but once serve the
princes in the same manner, who drag our
skins over our ears ! [Exeunt.
SCENE II.A Cottage in a thick Forest.
[Gof.tz von Berlichingen discovered walk-
ing among the trees before the door.
Goetz. Where linger my servants ?I must
walk up and down, or sleep will overcome me
five days and nights already on the watch.
It is hardly earned, this bit of life and free-
dom. But when I have caught thee, Weislin-
gen, I shall take my ease. (Fills a glass of
wine and drinks; looks at the flask.)Again
empty.George !While this and my courage
last, I can laugh at the ambition and chicanery
of princes!George!You may send round
your obsequious Weislingen to your uncles
and cousins to calumniate my characterbe
it SO'I am on the alert.Thou hast escaped
me, bishop; then thy dear Weislingen shall
pay the score.George !Doesnt the boy
hear ?George George !
George. (Entering in the cuirass of a full-
grown man.) Worshipful sir.
Goetz. What kept you? Were you asleep?
What in the devils name means this mas-
querade? Come hither; you dont look
amiss. Be not ashamed, boy; you look
bravely. Ah if you could but fill it!Is it
Hans cuirass?
8


George. He wished to sleep a little, and I
unbuckled it.
Goetz. He takes things easier than his (
master.
George. Do not be angry! I took it
quietly away and put it on, then fetched my
fathers old sword from the wall, ran to the
meadow, and drew it j
Goetz. And laid about you, no doubt? '
Rare times for the brambles and thorns!
Is Hans asleep?
George. He started up and cried out to 1
j me when you calledI was trying to unbuckle j
the cuirass when I heard you twice or thrice.
Goetz. Go take back his cuirass, and tell
him to be ready with his horses.
George. I have fed them well and they are
ready bridled; you may mount when you will.
Goetz. Bring me a stoup of wine. Give
Hans a glass too, and tell him to be on the
alertthere is good cause; I expedl the return
of my scouts every moment.
George. Ah noble sir !
Goetz. Whats the matter ?
George. May I not go with you?
Goetz. Another time, George when we
waylay merchants and seize their wagons
George. Another time !You have said
that so often.Oh, this time, this time! I
will only skulk behind ; just keep on the look-
outI will gather up all the spent arrows for
you.
Goetz. Next time, George!You must
first have a doublet, a steel cap and a lance.
George. Take me with you now !Had
I been with you last time, you would not have
lost your cross-bow.
Goetz. Do you know about that ?
George. You threw it at your antagonists
head ; one of his followers picked it up, and
off with it he went.Dont I know about it?
Goetz. Did my people tell you?
George. Oh, yes: and for that I whistle
them all sorts of tunes while we dress the
horses, and teach them merry songs, too.
Goetz. Thou art a brave boy.
George. Take me with you to prove my-
self so.
33
9


Goetz. The next time, I promise you !
You must not go to battle unarmed as you
are. There is a time coming which will also !
require men. I tell thee, boy, it will be a dear !
time. Princes shall offer their treasures for a
man whom they now hate. Go, George, give
Hans his cuirass again, and bring me wine.
(Exit Gkorgk.) Where can my people be?
It is incomprehensible!A monk! What
brings him here so late?
Enter Brother Martin.
Goetz. Good-evening, reverend father!
Whence come you so late? Man of holy-
rest, thou shamest many knights.
Martin. Thanks, noble sir! I am at
present but an unworthy brother, if we come
to titles. My cloister name is Augustin, but I
like better to be called by my Christian name,
Martin.
Gof.tz. You are tired, brother Martin, and
doubtless thirsty.
Enter George with wine.
Goetz. Here, in good time, comes wine !
Martin. For me a draught of water. I
dare not drink wine.
Goetz. Is it against your vow ?
Martin. Noble sir, to drink wine is not
against my vow; but because wine is against
my vow, therefore I drink it not.
Goetz. How am I to understand that?
Martin. Tis well for thee that thou
dost not understand it. Eating and drinking
nourish mans life.
Goetz. Well !
Martin. When thou hast eaten and
drunken, thou art as it were new born,
stronger, bolder, fitter for adlion. Wine re-
joices the heart of man, and joyousness is the
mother of every virtue. When thou hast drunk
wine thou art double what thou shouldst be !
twice as ingenious, twice as enterprising, and
twice as active.
Goetz. As I drink it, what you say is true.
Martin. Tis when thus taken in modera-
tion that I speak of it. But we
[George brings water.
Goetz. (Aside to George.) Go to the
road which leads to Daxbach ; lay thine ear
close to the earth, and listen for the tread of
horses. Return immediately.
Martin. But we, on the other hand, when
we have eaten and drunken, are the reverse
of what we should be. Our sluggish diges-
tion depresses our mental powers 3 and in the
indulgence of luxurious ease, desires are
generated which grow too strong for our
i weakness.
I Goetz. One glass, brother Martin, will
not disturb your sleep. You have travelled
far to-day. (Raises his glass.) Heres to all
fighting men !
Martin. With all my heart! (They ring
their glasses.) I cannot abide idle people
yet will I not say that all monks are idle;
they do what they can : I am just come from
St. Bede, where I slept last night. The prior
took me into the garden 3 that is their hive.
Excellent salad, cabbages in perfedlion, and
such cauliflowers and artichokes as you will
hardly find in Europe.
Goetz. So that is not the life for you?
[ Goes out and looks anxiously after the boy.
Returns.
Martin. Would that God had made me a
gardener, or day laborer, I might then have
been happy My convent is Erfurt in Saxony 3
my abbot loves me 3 he knows I cannot remain
idle, and so he sends me round the country,
wherever there is business to be done. I am
on my way to the Bishop of Constance.
Goetz. Another glass. Good speed to you!
Martin. The same to you.
Goetz. Why do you look at me so stead-
fastly, brother?
Martin. I am in love with your armor.
Goetz. Would you like a suit? It is heavy
and toilsome to the wearer.
Martin. What is not toilsome in this
world?But to me nothing is so much so as
to renounce my very nature Poverty, chas-
tity, obediencethree vows, each of which
taken singly seems the most dreadful to hu-
manityso insupportable are they all 3and
to spend a lifetime under this burthen, or to
groan despairingly under the still heavier load
of an evil conscienceah Sir Knight, what
are the toils of your life compared to the sor-
rows of a state which, from a mistaken desire
of drawing nearer to the Deity, condemns as
crimes the best impulses of our nature, im-
pulses by which we live, grow and prosper !
Goetz. Were your vow less sacred I
would give you a suit of armor and a steed,
and we would ride out together.
Martin. Would to Heaven my shoulders
had strength to bear armor, and my arm to
unhorse an enemy!Poor weak hand, ac-
customed from infancy to swing censers, to
bear crosses and banners of peace, how couldsl
thou manage the lance and falchion ? My voice,
10


tuned only to Aves and Halleluiahs, would be
a herald of my weakness to the enemy,, while
yours would overpower him; otherwise no
vows should keep me from entering an order
founded by the Creator himself.
Goetz. To your happy return. \_Drinks.
Martin. I drink that only in compliment
to you A return to my prison must ever be
unhappy. When you, Sir Knight, return to
your castle, with the consciousness of your
courage and strength, which no fatigue can
overcome; when you, for the first time, after
a long absence, stretch yourself unarmed upon
your bed, secure from the attack of enemies,
and resign yourself to a sleep sweeter than the
draught after a long thirstthen can you speak
of happiness.
Goetz. And accordingly it comes but
seldom.
Martin. (With growing ardor.) But when
it does come, it is a foretaste of paradise.
When you return home laden with the spoils
of your enemies, and, remember, such a one
I struck from his horse ere he could discharge
his piecesuch another I overthrew, horse and
man; then you ride to your castle, and
Goetz. And what?
Martin. And your wife(Fills a glass.)
To her health! (He wipes his eyes.) You
have one?
Goetz. A virtuous, noble wife !
Martin. Happy the man who possesses a
virtuous wife, his life is doubled. This bless-
ing was denied me, yet was woman the glory
or crown of creation.
Goetz. (Aside.) I grieve for him. The
sense of his condition preys upon his heart.
Enter George, breathless.
George. My lord, my lord, I hear horses
in full gallop !two of themtis they for
certain.
Goetz. Bring out my steed; let Hans
mount. Farewell, dear brother; God be with
you. Be cheerful and patient. He will give
you ample scope.
Martin. Let me request your name.
Goetz. Pardon meFarewell!
[ Gives his left hand.
Martin. Why do you give the left?Am
I unworthy of the knightly right hand ?
Goetz. Were you the Emperor, you must
be satisfied with this. Mv right hand, though
not useless in combat, is unresponsive to the
grasp of affection. It is one with its mailed
gauntletYou see, it is iron!
Martin. Then art thou Goetz of Berlich-
ingen. I thank thee, Heaven, who hast shown
me the man whom princes hate, but to whom
the oppressed throng! (He takes his right
hand.) Withdraw not this hand; let me
kiss it.
Goetz. You must not!
Martin. Let me, let me Thou hand,
more worthy even than the saintly relic
through which the most sacred blood has
flowed lifeless instrument, quickened by the
noblest spirits faith in God.
[Goetz adjusts his helmet and takes his
lance.
ii


Martin. There was a monk among ns 1
about a year ago, who visited you when your
hand was shot off at the siege of Landshut.
He used to tell us what you suffered, and your
grief at being disabled i'or your profession of
arms; till you remembered having heard of
one who had also lost a hand, and yet served
long as a gallant knightI shall never for-
get it.
Enter the (wo Troopers. They speak apart
with Goetz.
Martin. ( Continuing.) I shall never for-
get his words uttered in the noblest, the most !
childlike trust in God: If I had twelve
hands, what would they avail me without thv
grace? then may I with only one
Goetz. In the wood of Haslach then.
(Turns to Martix.) Farewell, worthy bro-
ther ! [Embraces hint.
Martin. Forget me not, as I shall never
forget thee !
xeunf Goet z and his Troopers.
Martin. Flow my heart beat at the sight
of him. He spoke not, yet my spirit recog- j
nized his. What rapture to behold a great
man !
George. Reverend sir, vou will sleep
here ?
Martin. Can I have a bed ?
George. No, sir! I know of beds only
by hearsay; in our quarters there is nothing
but straw."
Martin. It will serve. What is thy name?
George. George, reverend sir.
Martin. George! Thou hast a gallant
patron saint.
George. They say he was a trooper; that
is what I intend to be !
Martin. Stop! ( Takes a picture from his
breviary and gives it to him.) There behold
himfollow his example; be brave, and fear
God. [Exit into the cottage.
George. Ah what a splendid gray horse!
If I had but one like thatand the golden
armor. There is an ugly dragon. At present
I shoot nothing but sparrows. O St. George!
make me but tall and strong; give me a lance,
armor and such a horse, and then i'et the drag-
ons come! [Exit.
12


Fr. Tech l del.
PUBLISHED BY GEORGE BARRIE.
M Ldmiriel sculp.
//


SCENE III.An Apartment in Jaxthausen,
the Castle of Goetz von Berlichingen.
Elizabeth, Maria and Charles discovered.
Charles. Pray now, dear aunt, tell me
again that story about the good child ; it is so
pretty
Maria. Do you tell it to me, little rogue!
that I may see if you have paid attention.
Charles. Wait then till I think.There
was once upon YesThere was once
upon a time a child, and his mother was sick;
so the child went
Maria. No, no !Then his mother said,
Dear child
Charles. Iam sick
Maria. And cannot go out.
Charles. And gave him money and said,
Go and buy yourself a breakfast. There
came a poor man
Maria. The child went. There met him
an old man who was. Now, Charles !
Charles. Who wasold
Maria. Of course. Who was hardly able
to walk, and said, Dear child
Charles. c Give me something; I have
eaten not a morsel yesterday or to-day. Then
1 the child gave him the money
Maria. That should have bought his
breakfast.
Charles. Then the old man said
Maria. Then the old man took the child
by the hand
Charles. By the hand, and saidand
became a fine beautiful saintand said Dear
child,
Maria. The holy Virgin rewards thee
for thy benevolence through me: whatever
sick person thou touchest
Charles. With thy handIt was
the right hand, I think.
Maria. Yes.
Charles. He will get well directly.
Maria. Then the child ran home, and
could not speak for joy
Charles. And fell upon his mothers
neck and wept for joy.
Maria. Then the mother cried, What
is this? and became Now, Charles.
Charles. Becamebecame
Maria. You do not attendand became
well. And the child cured kings and em-
perors, and became so rich that he built a great
abbey.
Elizabeth. I cannot understand why my
husband stays. He has been away five days
and nights, and he hoped to have finished his
adventure so quickly.
Maria. I have long felt uneasy. Were I
married to a man who continually incurred
such danger, I should die within the first year.
Elizabeth. I thank God that he has made
me of firmer stuff!
Charles. But must my father ride out if
it is so dangerous?
Maria. Such is his good pleasure.
Elizabeth. He must indeed, dear Charles!
Charles. Why ?
Elizabeth. Do you not remember the last
time he rode out, when he brought you those
nice things?
Charles. Will he bring me anything now?
Elizabeth. I believe so. Listen: there
was a tailor at Stutgard who was a capital
archer, and had gained the prize at Cologne.
Charles. Was it much?
Elizabeth. A hundred dollars ; and after-
wards they would not pay him.
34
*3


Maria. That was naughty, eh, Charles?
Charles. Naught}- people!
Elizabeth. The tailor came to your father
and begged him to get his money for him ;
then your father rode out and intercepted a
party of merchants from Cologne, and kept
them prisoners till they paid the money.
Would you not have ridden out too?
Charles. No; for one must go through a
dark thick wood, where there are gypsies and
witches
Iflizabeth. Youre a fine fellow; afraid
of witches!
Maria. Charles, it is far better to live at
home in your castle like a quiet Christian
knight. One may find opportunities enough
of doing good on ones own lands. Even the
worthiest knights do more harm than good in
their excursions.
Elizabeth. Sister, you know not what you
are saving.God grant our bov mav become
braver as he grows up, and not take after that
Weislingen, who has dealt so faithlessly with
my husband.
Maria. We will not judge, Elizabeth.
My brother is highly incensed, and so are you;
I am only a spectator in the matter, and can
be more impartial.
Elizabeth. Weislingen cannot be de-
fended.
Maria. What I have heard of him has in-
terested me.Even your husband relates many
instances of his former goodness and affection.
How happy was their youth when they were
both pages of honor to the margrave !
Elizabeth. That may be. But only tell
me, how can a man ever have been good who
lays snares for his best and truest friend ? who
has sold his services to the enemies of my
husband; and who strives, by invidious mis-
representations, to poison the mind of our
noble emperor, who is so gracious to us ?
[A horn is heard.
Charles. Papa papa the warder sounds
his horn Joy joy Open the gate !
Elizabeth. There he comes with booty !
Enter Peter.
Peter. We have foughtwe have con-
quered !God save you, noble ladies !
Elizabeth. Have you captured Weislin-
gen ?
Peter. Plimself, and three followers.
Elizabeth. How came you to stay so long?
Peter. We lay in wait for him between
Nuremberg and Bamberg, but he would not
come, though we knew he had set out. At
length we heard of his whereabouts; he had
struck off sideways, and was staying quietly
with the earl at Schwarzenberg.
Elizabeth. They would also fain make the
earl my husbands enemy.
Peter. I immediately told my master.
Up and away we rode into the forest of Has-
lach. And it was curious that while we were
riding along that night, a shepherd was watch-
ing, and five wolves fell upon the flock and
attacked them stoutly. Then my master
laughed, and said, Good luck to us all, dear
comrades, both to you and us! And the
good omen overjoyed us. Just then Weis-
lingen came riding towards us with four at-
tendants
Maria. How my heart beats !
Peter. My comrade and I, as our master
had commanded, threw ourselves suddenly on
him, and clung to him as if we had grown to-
gether, so that he could not move, while my
master and Hans fell upon the servants and
overpowered them. They were all taken, ex-
cept one who escaped.
Elizabeth. I am curious to see him. Will
he arrive soon ?
Peter. They are riding through the valley,
and will be here in a quarter of an hour.
Maria. He is no doubt cast down and de-
jected ?
Peter. He looks gloomy enough.
Maria. It will grieve me to see his distress!
Elizabeth. Oh, I must get food ready.
You are no doubt all hungry?
Peter. Plungry enough, in truth.
Elizabeth. (To Maria.) Take the cellar
keys and bring the best wine. They have de-
served it. [Exit Elizabeth.
Charles. Ill go too, aunt.
Maria. Come then, boy.
[Exeunt Charles and Maria.
Peter. Hell never be his father, else he
would have gone with me to the stable.
Enter Goetz, Weislingen, Hans and other
Troopers.
Goetz. (Laying his helmet and sword on
a table.) Unbuckle my armor, and give me
my doublet. Ease will refresh me. Brother
Martin, thou saidst truly. You have kept us
long on the watch, Weislingen !
[Weislingen paces up and down in silence.
Goetz. Be of good cheer! Come, unarm
yourself! Where are your clothes? I hope
nothing has been lost. (To the attendants.)
14


ARTIST : A. WAGNER.
GOTZ VON BERLICHINGEN. ACT I.
THE CAPTURE OF WEISLINGKN


Go, ask his servants ; open the baggage and
see that nothing is missing. Or I can lend
you some of mine.
Weislingen. Let me remain as I amit
is all one.
Goetz. I can give you a handsome doublet,
but it is only of linen ; it has grown too tight
for me. I wore it at the marriage of my Lord
the Palsgrave, when your bishop was so incensed
at me. About a fortnight before I had sunk
two of his vessels upon the Main.I was go-
ing upstairs in the Stag at Heidelberg, with
Franz von Sickingen. Before you get quite
to the top there is a landing-place with iron
railsthere stood the bishop, and gave his
hand to Franz as he passed, and to me also as
I followed close behind him. I laughed in
my sleeve, and went to the Landgrave of
Hanau, who was always a kind friend to me,
and said, The bishop has given me his hand,
but Ill wager he did not know me. The
bishop heard me, for I was speaking loud on
purpose. He came to us angrily, and said,
True, I gave thee my hand, because I knew
thee not. To which I answered, I know
that, my lord ; and so here you have your
shake of the hand back again! The mani-
kin grew red as a turkey-cock with spite, and
he ran up into the room and complained to
the Palsgrave Lewis and the Prince of Nassau.
We have laughed over the scene again and
again.
Weislingen. I wish you would leave me
to myself.
Goetz. Why so? I entreat you be of
good cheer. You are my prisoner, but I will
not abuse my power.
Weislingen. I have no fear of that. That
is your duty as a knight.
Goetz. And you know how sacred it is
to me.
Weislingen. I am your prisonerthe rest
matters not.
j Goetz. You should not say so. Had you
been taken by a prince, fettered and cast into
a dungeon, your gaoler directed to drive sleep
from your eyes
Enter Servants with clothes. Weislingen
unarms himself. Enter Charles.
Charles. Good-morrow, papa!
Goetz. (Kisses him.) Good-morrow,
boy How have you been this long time ?
Charles. Very well, father Aunt says I
am a good boy.
Goetz. Does she?
| Charles. Have you brought me anything?
: Goetz. Nothing this time,
j Charles. I have learned a great deal.
' Goetz. Ay!
Charles. Shall I tell you about the good
child ?
Goetz. After dinner.
Charles. I know something else, too.
i Goetz. What may that be?
! Charles. Jaxthausen is a village and
castle on the Jaxt, which has appertained in
property and heritage for two hundred years
to the Lords of Berlichingen
Goetz. Do you know the Lord of Ber-
lichingen? (Charles stares at him. Aside.)
j His learning is so abstruse that he does not
I know his own father. To whom does Jaxt-
! hausen belong?
| Charles. Jaxthausen is a village and
; castle upon the Jaxt
j Goetz. I did not ask that. I knew every
! path, pass and ford about the place before
! ever I knew the name of the village, castle or
1 river.Is your mother in the kitchen ?
Charles. Yes, papa! They are cooking
; a lamb and turnips.
Goetz. Do you know that too, Jack Turn-
i spit?
j Charles. And my aunt is roasting an
apple for me to eat after dinner
Goetz. Cant you eat it raw?
Charles. It tastes better roasted.
Goetz. You must have a titbit, must you?
Weislingen, I will be with you immediately.
I must go and see my wife.Come, Charles !
Charles. Who is that man ?
| Goetz. Bid him welcome. Tell him to
be merry.
Charles. Theres my hand for you, man !
Be merryfor the dinner will soon be ready.
Weislingen. ( Takes up the child and kisses
him.) Happy boy! that knowest no worse
evil than the delay of dinner. May you live
| to have much joy in your son, Berlichingen !
i Goetz. Where there is most light the shades
! are deepest. Yet I should thank God for it.
; Well see what they are about.
| [Exit with Charles and Servants.
j Weislingen. Oh, that I could but wake
and find this all a dream In the power of
Berlichingen !from whom I had scarcely de-
tached myselfwhose remembrance I shunned
like firewhom I hoped to overpower! and
he still the old true-hearted Goetz! Gracious
God what will be the end of it? O Adelbert!
Led back to the very hall where we played as
15


children ; when thou didst love and prize him
as thy soul! Who can know him and hate
him? Alas! 1 am so thoroughly insignificant
here. Happy days ye are gone. There, in
his chair by the chimney, sat old Berlichingen,
while we played around him, and loved each
other like cherubs! How anxious the bishop
and all my friends will be Well, the whole
country will sympathize with my misfortune.
Hut what avails it ? Can they give me the
peace after which I strive?
Re-enter Goetz with wine and goblets.
Goetz. Well take a glass while dinner is
preparing. Come, sit downthink yourself
at home! Fancy youve come once more to
see Goetz. It is long since we have sat and
emptied a flagon together. (Lifts his glass.)
Come : a light heart!
Weislixgex. Those times are gone by.
Goetz. God forbid To be sure, we shall
hardly pass more pleasant days than those we
spent together at the margraves court, when
we were inseparable night and day. I think
with pleasure on my youth. Do you remember
the scuffle I had with the Polander, whose po-
maded and frizzled hair I chanced to rub with
my sleeve ?
Weislixgex. It was at table; and he struck
at you with a knife.
Goetz. I gave it him, however; and you
had a quarrel upon that account with his com-
rades. We always stuck together like brave
fellows, and were the admiration of every one.
(Raises his glass.) Castor and Pollux! It
used to rejoice my heart when the margrave
so called us.
Weislixgex. The Bishop of Wurtzburg
first gave us the name.
Goetz. That bishop was a learned man,
and withal so kind and gentle. I shall re-
member as long as I live how he used to caress
us, praise our friendship, and say, Happy is
the man who is his friends twin-brother.
Weislixgex. No more of that.
Goetz. Why not? I know nothing more
delightful after fatigue than to talk over old
times. Indeed, when I recall to mind how we
bore good and bad fortune together, and were
all in all to each other, and how I thought
this was to continue forever. Was not that
my sole comfort when my hand was shot away
at Landshut, and you nursed and tended me
like a brother? I hoped Adelbert would in
future be my right hand. And now
Weislixgex. Alas!
Goetz. Hadst thou but listened to me
when I begged thee to go with me to Brabant,
all would have been well. But then that un-
happy turn for court-dangling seized thee, and
thv coquetting and flirting with the women.
I always told thee, when thou wouldst mix
with these lounging, vain court sycophants,
and entertain them with gossip about unlucky
matches and seduced girls, scandal about absent
friends, and all such trash as they take interest
inI always said, Adelbert, thou wilt become
a rogue !
Weislixgex. To what purpose is all this?
Goetz. Would to God I could forget it,
or that it were otherwise Art thou not free
and nobly born as any in Germany; indepen-
dent, subject to the emperor alone; and dost
thou crouch among vassals? What is the
bishop to thee? Granted, he is thy neighbor,
and can do thee a shrewd turn ; hast thou not
power and friends to requite him in kind ?
Art thou ignorant of the dignity of a free
knight, who depends only upon God, the
emperor, and himself, that thou degradest
thyself to be the courtier of a stubborn, jeal-
ous priest ?
Weislixgex. Let me speak !
Goetz. What hast thou to say?
Weislixgex. You look upon the princes
as the wolf upon the shepherd. And can you
blame them for defending their territories and
property? Are they a moment secure from
the unruly knights, who plunder their vassals
even upon the highroads, and sack their castles
and villages? Upon the other hand, our
countrys enemies threaten to overrun the
lands of our beloved emperor, yet, while he
needs the princes assistance, they can scarce
defend their own lives; is it not our good
genius which at this moment leads them to
devise means of procuring peace for Germany,
of securing the administration of justice, and
giving to great and small the blessings of
quiet ? And can you blame us, Berlichingen,
for securing the protection of the powerful
princes, our neighbors, whose assistance is at
hand, rather than relying on that of the em-
peror, who is so far removed from us, and is
hardly able to protect himself?
Goetz. Yes, yes, I understand you. Weis-
lingen, were the princes as you paint them,
we_ should all have what we want. Peace and
quiet No doubt! Every bird of prey nat-
urally likes to eat its plunder undisturbed.
The general weal! If they would but take
the trouble to study that. And they trifle
16


ARTIST: A. WAGNER.
GOTZ VON BERLICHINGEN
ACT I.
GOTZ AND HIS SON CHARLES.


with the emperor shamefully. Every day
some new tinker or other comes to give his
opinion. The emperor means well, and would
gladly put things to rights; but because he
happens to understand a thing readily, and bv
a single word can put a thousand hands into
motion, he thinks everything will be as speed-
ily and as easily accomplished. Ordinance
upon ordinance is promulgated, each nullify-
ing the last, while the princes obey only those
which serve their own interest, and prate of
peace and security of the empire, while they
are treading under foot their weaker neighbors.
I will be sworn, many a one thanks God in his
heart that the Turk keeps the emperor fully
employed !
Weislingen. You view things your own
way.
Goetz. So does every one. The question
is, which is the right way to view them? And
your plans at least shun the day.
Weisungen. You may say what you will;
I am your prisoner.
Goetz. If your conscience is free, so are
you. How was it with the general tranquil-
lity? I remember going as a boy of sixteen
with the margrave to the Imperial Diet. What
harangues the princes made And the clergy
were the most vociferous of all. Your bishop
thundered into the emperors ears his regard
for justice, till one thought it had become part
and parcel of his being. And now he has im-
prisoned a page of mine, at a time when our
quarrels were all accommodated, and I had
buried them in oblivion. Is not all settled
between us? What does he want with the
boy ?
Weisungen. It was done without his know-
ledge.
Goetz. Then why does he not release him?
Weisungen. He did not condudt himself
as he ought.
Goetz. Not condudt himself as he ought?
By my honor he performed his duty, as surely
as he has been imprisoned both with your
knowledge and the bishops! Do you think
I am come into the world this very day, that I
cannot see what all this means?
Weisungen. You are suspicious, and do
us wrong.
Goetz. Weislingen, shall I deal openly
with you? Inconsiderable as I am, I am a
thorn in your side, and Selbitz and Sickingen
are no less so, because we are firmly resolved
to die sooner than to thank any one but God
for the air we breathe, or pay homage to any-
one but the emperor. This is why they worry
me in every possible way, blacken my char-
adter with the emperor, and among my friends
and neighbors, and spy about for advantage
over me. They would have me out of .he
way at any price; that was your reason for
imprisoning the page whom you knew I had
despatched for intelligence: and now you say
he did not conduct himself as he should do,
because he would not betray my secrets. And
you, Weislingen, are their tool!
Weislingen. Berlichingen !
Goetz. Not a word more. I am an enemy
to long explanations; they deceive either the
maker or the hearer, and generally both.
Enter Charles.
Charles. Dinner is ready, father !
Goetz. Good news! Come, I hope the
company of my women folk will amuse you.
You always liked the girls. Ay, ay, they can
tell many pretty stories about you. Come !
[Exeunt.
35
17


*
SCENE IV.The Bishop of Bambergs Palace.
[ The Bishop, the Abbot of Fulda, Olearius,
Liebtraut ami Courtiers at table. The des-
sert and wine before them.
Bishop. Are there many of the German nobility
studying at Bologna?
18
Olearius. Both nobles and cit-
izens ; and, I do not exaggerate in
saying that they acquire the most
brilliant reputation. It is a proverb
in the university: As studious as a
German noble. For while the cit-
izens display a laudable diligence, in
order to compensate by learning for
their want of birth, the nobles strive,
Avith praiseworthy emulation, to en-
hance their ancestral dignity by supe-
rior attainments.
Abbot. Indeed!
Liebtraut. What may one not
live to hear. We live and learn, as
the proverb says. As studious as
a German noble. I never heard
that before.
Olearius. Yes, they are the ad-
miration of the whole university.
Some of the oldest and most learned
will soon be coming back with their
doctors degree. The emperor will
doubtless be happy to intrust to them
the highest offices.
Bishop. He cannot fail to do so.
Abbot. Do you know, for instance,
a young mana Hessian?
Olearius. There are many Hes-
sians with us.


Abbot. His name isis. Does nobody
remember it? Iiis mother was a Von.
Oh his father had but one eye, and was a
marshal
Liebtraut. Von Wildenholz !
Abbot. Right. Von Wildenholz.
Olearius. I know him well. A young
man of great abilities. He is particularly
esteemed for his talent in disputation.
Abbot. He has that from his mother.
Liebtraut. Yes; but his father would
never praise her for that quality.
Bishop. How call you the emperor who
wrote your Corpus Juris ?
Olearius. Justinian.
Bishop. A worthy prince :heres to his
memory!
Olearius. To his memory! [They drink.
Abbot. That must be a fine book.
Olearius. It may be called a book of
books; a digest of all laws; there you find
the sentence ready for every case, and where
the text is antiquated or obscure, the defi- j
ciency is supplied by notes, with which the
most learned men have enriched this truly
admirable work.
Abbot. A digest of all laws!Indeed!
Then the ten commandments must be in it.
Olearius. Implicite ; not explicite.
Abbot. Thats what I mean ; plainly set
down, without any explication.
Bishop. But the best is, you tell us that a
state can be maintained in the most perfect
tranquillity and subordination by receiving
and rightly following that statute-book.
Olearius. Doubtless.
Bishop. All doctors of laws !
[ They drink.
Olearius. Ill tell them of this abroad.
(They drink.) Would to Heaven that men
thought thus in my country.
Abbot. Whence come you, most learned
sir ?
Olearius. From Frankfort, at your emi-
nences service !
Bishop. You gentlemen of the law, then,
are not held in high estimation there ?How
comes that ?
Olearius. It is strange enoughwhen I
last went there to colled; my fathers effeds,
the mob almost stoned me, when they heard I
was a lawyer.
Abbot. God bless me !
Olearius. It is because their tribunal,
which they hold in great resped, is composed
of people totally ignorant of the Roman law. j
An intimate acquaintance with the internal
condition of the town, and also of its foreign
relations, acquired through age and experience,
is deemed a sufficient qualification. They de-
cide according to certain established edids of
their own, and some old customs recognized in
the city and neighborhood.
Abbot. Thats very right.
Olearius. But far from sufficient. The
life of man is short, and in one generation
cases of every description cannot occur; our
statute-book is a colledion of precedents, fur-
nished by the experience of many centuries.
Besides, the wills and opinions of men are
variable; one man deems right to-day what
another disapproves to-morrow; and confusion
and injustice are the inevitable results. Law
determines absolutely, and its decrees are im-
mutable.
Abbot. Thats certainly better.
Olearius. But the common people wont
acknowledge that; and, eager as they are after
novelty, they hate any innovation in their laws
which leads them out of the beaten track, be
it ever so much for the better. They hate a
jurist as if he were a cut-purse or a subverter
of the state, and become furious if one at-
tempts to settle among them.
Liebtraut. You come from Frankfort?
I know the place wellwe tasted your good
cheer at the emperors coronation. You say
your name is OleariusI know no one in the
town of your name.
Olearius. My fathers name was Oilman ;
but after the example, and with the advice of
many jurists, I have Latinized the name to
Olearius for the decoration of the title-page
of my legal treatises.
Liebtraut. You did well to translate your-
self : a prophet is not honored in his own
countryin your native guise you might have
shared the same fate.
Olearius. That was not the reason.
Liebtraut. All things have two reasons.
Abbot. A prophet is not honored in his
own country.
Liebtraut. But do you know why, most
reverend sir?
Abbot. Because he was born and bred
there.
Liebtraut. Well, that may be one reason.
The other is, because, upon a nearer acquaint-
ance with these gentlemen, the halo of glory
and honor shed around them by the distant
haze totally disappears; they are then seen to
be nothing more than tiny rushlights !
x9


Olearius. It seems you are placed here to
tell pleasant truths.
Liebtraut. As I have wit enough to dis-
cover them, 1 do not lack courage to utter
them.
Oi.KAKii s. Yet you lack the art of apply-
ing them well.
Liebtraut. It is no matter where you place
a cupping-glass provided it draws blood.
Oi.earr'S. Barbers are known by their
dress, and no one takes offence at their scurvy
jests. Let me advise you as a precaution to
bear the badge of your ordera cap and bells!
Liebtraut. Where did you take your de-
gree? I only ask, so that, should I ever take
a lancv to a fools cap, I could at once go to
the right shop.
Olf.arius. You carry face enough.
Liebtraut. And you paunch.
{The Bishop and Abbot laugh.
Bishop. Not so warm, gentlemen Some
other subject. At table all should be fair and
quiet. Choose another subject, Liebtraut.
Liebtraut. Opposite Frankfort lies a vil-
lage called Sachsenhausen
Olearius. {To the Bishop.) What news
of the Turkish expedition, your excellency?
Bishop. The emperor has most at heart,
first of all to restore peace to the empire, put
an end to feuds, and secure the stridt adminis-
tration of justice: then, according to report,
he will go in person against the enemies of
his country and of Christendom. At present
internal dissensions give him enough to do;
and the empire, despite half a hundred treaties
of peace, is one scene of murder. Franconia,
Swabia, the Upper Rhine and the surrounding
countries are laid waste by presumptuous and
reckless knights.And here, at Bamberg,
Sickingen, Selbitz with one leg, and Goetz
with the iron hand, scoff at the imperial au-
thority.
Abbot. If his majesty does not exert him-
self, these fellows will at last thrust us into
sacks.
Liebtraut. He would be a sturdy fellow
indeed who should thrust the wine-butt of
Fulda into a sack !
Bishop. Goetz especially has been for
many years my mortal foe, and annoys me
beyond description. But it will not last long,
I hope. The emperor holds his court at
Augsburg. We have taken our measures, and
cannot fail of success.Dodlor, do you know
Adelbert von Weislingen ?
Olearius. No, your eminence.
Bishop. If you stay till his arrival you
will have the pleasure of seeing a most noble,
accomplished and gallant knight.
Olearius. He must be an excellent man
indeed to deserve such praises from such a
mouth.
Liebtraut. And yet he was not bred at
any university.
Bishop. We know that. (The attendants
throng to the window.) Whats the matter?
Attendant. Farber, Weislingens servant,
is riding in at the castle-gate.
Bishop. See what he brings. He most
likely comes to announce his master.
{Exit Li ebtr aut. They stand up and drink.
Liebtraut re-enters.
Bishop. What news?
Liebtraut. I wish another had to tell it
Weislingen is a prisoner.
Bishop. What ?
Liebtraut. Berlichingen has seized him
and three troopers near Haslach. One is
escaped to tell you.
Abbot. A Jobs messenger !
Olearius. I grieve from my heart.
Bishop. I will see the servant; bring him
upI will speak with him myself. Conduct
him into my cabinet. {Exit Bishop.
Abbot. (Sitting down.) Another draught,
however. (The Servants fill round.
Olearius. Will not your reverence take a
turn in the garden? Post coenam stabis,
seu passus mi lie meabis.
Liebtraut. In truth, sitting is unhealthy
for you. You might get an apoplexy. ( The
Abbot rises. Aside.) Let me but once get
him out of doors, I will give him exercise
enough! {Exeunt.
20




SCENE V.-Jaxthausen.
Maria. Weislingex.
Maria. You love me, you say. I willingly
believe it, and hope to be happy with you, and
make you happy also.
Weislingex. I feel nothing but that I am
entirely thine. [.Embraces her.
Maria. Softly!I gave you one kiss for
earnest, but you must not take possession of
what is only yours conditionally.
Weislingex. You are too stridt, Maria!
Innocent love is pleasing in the sight of
Heaven, instead of giving offence.
Maria. It may be so. But I think dif-
ferently.; for I have been taught that caresses i
are, like fetters, strong through their union,
36
and that maidens, when they love, are weaker
than Samson after the loss of his locks.
Weislingex. Who taught you so?
Maria. The abbess of my convent. Till
my sixteenth year I was with herand it is
only with you that I enjoy happiness like that
her company afforded me. She had loved,
and could tellshe had a most affectionate
heart. Oh she was an excellent woman !
Weislingex. Then you resemble her.
( Takes her hand.) What will become of me
when I am compelled to leave you?
Maria. (Withdrawing her hand.) You
will feel some regret, I hope, for I know what
my feelings will be. But you must away !
Weislingex. I know it, dearest! and I
| willfor well I feel what happiness I shall
purchase by this sacrifice! Now, blessed be
2 I


your brother, and the day on which he rode
out to capture me !
Maria. His heart was full of hope for you
and himself. Farewell! he said, at his de-
parture, 1 go to recover my friend.
Weislixgf.x. That he has done. Would
that I had studied the arrangement and secu-
rity of my property, instead of negleCting it,
and dallying at that worthless court!then
couldst thou have been instantly mine.
Maria. Even delay has its pleasures.
Weislixgex. Say not so, Maria, else I
shall fear that thy heart is less warm than mine.
True, I deserve punishment, but what hopes
will brighten every step of my journey To
be wholly thine, to live only for thee and thy
circle of friendsfar removed from the world,
in the enjoyment of all the raptures which two
hearts can mutually bestow. What is the
favor of princes, what the applause of the
universe, to such simple, yet unequalled felic-
ity? Many have been my hopes and wishes;
but this happiness surpasses them all.
Enter Goetz.
Goetz. Your page has returned. He can
scarcely utter a word for hunger and fatigue.
My wife has ordered him some refreshment.
Thus much I have gathered: the bishop will
not give up my page; imperial commissioners
are to be appointed, and a day named upon
which the matter may be adjusted. Be that
as it may, Adelbert, you are free. Pledge me
but your hand that you will for the future give
neither open nor secret assistance to my ene-
mies.
Weislingen. Here I grasp thy hand.
From this moment be our friendship and con-
fidence firm and unalterable as a primary law
of nature Let me take this hand also (takes
Marias hand), and with it the possession of
this most noble lady.
Goetz. May I say yes for you ?
Maria. (Timidly.) Ifif it is your wish
Goetz. Happily our wishes do not differ
on this point. Thou needst not blushthe
glance of thine eye betrays thee. Well then,
Weislingen, join hands, and I say Amen / My
friend and brother! I thank" thee, sister;
thou canst do more than spin flax, for thou
hast drawn a thread which can fetter this wan-
dering bird of paradise. Yet you look not
quite at your ease, Adelbert. What troubles
you ? I am perfe&ly happy What I but
hoped in a dream I now see with my eyes,
and feel as though I were still dreaming. Now
my dream is explained. I thought last night
that, in token of reconciliation, I gave you
this iron hand, and that you held it so fast
that it broke away from my arm; I started,
and awoke. Had I but dreamed a little
longer I should have seen how you gave me
a new living hand. You must away this in-
stant, to put your castle and property in order.
That cursed court has made you negleCt both.
I must call my wife.Elizabeth !
Maria. How overjoyed my brother is !
Weislingen. Yet I am still more so.
Goetz. (To Maria.) You will have a
pleasant residence.
Maria. Franconia is a fine country.
Weislingen. And I may venture to say
that my castle lies in the most fertile and deli-
cious part of it.
Goetz. That you may, and I can confirm
it. Look you, here flows the Main, around
a hill clothed with cornfields and vineyards, its
top crowned with a Gothic castle; then the
river makes a sharp turn, and glides round be-
hind the rock on which the castle is built.
The windows of the great hall look perpen-
dicularly down upon the river, and command
a prospect of many miles in extent.
Enter Elizabeth.
Elizabeth. What wonldst thou ?
Goetz. You too must give your hand, and
say, God bless you They are a pair.
Elizabeth. So soon ?
Goetz. But not unexpectedly.
Elizabeth. May you ever adore her as
ardently as while you sought her hand. And
then, as your love, so be your happiness!
Weislingen. Amen I seek no happiness
but under this condition.
Goetz. The bridegroom, my love, must
leave us for awhile ; for this great change will
involve many smaller ones. He must first
withdraw himself from the bishops court, in
order that their friendship may gradually cool.
Then he must rescue his property from the
hands of selfish stewards, andbut come,
sister; come, Elizabeth; let us leave him; his
page has no doubt private messages for him.
Weislingen. Nothing but what you may
hear.
Goetz. Tis needless. Franconians and
Swabians! Ye are now more closely united
than ever. Now we shall be able to keep the
princes in check.
[-Exeunt Goetz, Elizabeth, Maria.
Weislingen. (Alone.) God in heaven!


And canst Thou have reserved such happiness j
for one so unworthy? It is too much for
my heart. How meanly I depended upon j
wretched fools, whom I thought I was govern-
ing, upon the smile of princes, upon the
homage of those around me! Goetz, my
faithful Goetz, thou hast restored me to my-
self, and thou, Maria, hast completed my re-
formation. I feel free, as if brought from a
dungeon into the open air. Bamberg will I
never see morewill snap all the shameful
bonds that have held me beneath myself. My
heart expands, and never more will I degrade
myself by struggling for a greatness that is
denied me. He alone is great and happy
who fills his own station of independence,
and has neither to' command nor to obey.
Enter Francis.
Francis. God save you, noble sir I bring
you so many salutations that I know not where
to begin. Bamberg, and ten miles round, cry
with a thousand voices, God save you !
Weislingen. Welcome, Francis! Bringst
thou aught else ?
Francis. You are held in such considera-
tion at court that it cannot be expressed.
Weislingen. That will not last long.
Francis. As long as you live; and after
your death it will shine with more lustre than
the brazen characters on a monument. How
they took your misfortune to heart!
Weislingen. And what said the bishop?
Francis. His eager curiosity poured out
question upon question, without giving me
time to answer. He knew of your accident
already; for Farber, who escaped from Has-
lach, had brought him the tidings. But he
wished to hear every particular. He asked so
anxiously whether you were wounded. I told
him you were whole, from the hair of your
head to the nail of your little toe.
Weislingen. And what said he to the
proposals ?
Francis. He was ready at first to give up
the page and a ransom to boot for your liberty.
But when he heard you were to be dismissed
without ransom, and merely to give your
parole that the boy should be set free, he was
for putting off Berlichingen with some pre-
tence. He charged me with a thousand mes-
sages to you, more than I can ever utter. Oh,
how he harangued It was a long sermon
upon the text, I cannot live without Weis-
lingen !
Weislingen. He must learn to do so.
Francis. What mean you? He said, Bid
him hasten ; all the court waits for him.
Weislingen. Let them wait on. I shall
not go to court.
Francis. Not go to court 1 My gracious
lord, how comes that? If you knew what I
know; could you but dream what I have
seen
Weislingen. What ails thee?
Francis. The bare remembrance takes
away my senses. Bamberg is no longer Bam-
berg. An angel of heaven, in semblance of
woman, has taken up her abode there, and
has made it a paradise.
Weislingen. Is that all?
Francis. May I become a shaven friar if
the first glimpse of her does not drive you
frantic !
Weislingen. Who is it, then ?
Francis. Adelaide von Walldorf.
Weislingen. Indeed I have heard much
of her beauty.
Francis. Heard You might as well say
I have seen music. So far is the tongue from
being able to rehearse the slightest particle of
her beauty, that the very eye which beholds
her cannot drink it all in.
Weislingen. You are mad.
Francis. That may well be. The last
time I was in her company I had no more
command over my senses than if I had been
drunk, or, I may rather say, I felt like a
glorified saint enjoying the angelic vision !
All my senses exalted, more lively and more
perfect than ever, yet not one at its owners
command.
Weislingen. That is strange !
Francis. As I took leave of the bishop,
she sat by him; they were playing at chess.
He was very gracious; gave me his hand to
kiss, and said much, of which I heard not a
syllable, for I was looking on his fair antago-
nist. Her eye was fixed upon the board, as
if meditating a bold move.A touch of subtle
watchfulness around the mouth and cheek.I
could have wished to be the ivory king. The
mixture of dignity and feeling on her brow
and the dazzling lustre of her face and neck,
heightened by her raven tresses
Weislingen. The theme has made you
quite poetical.
Francis. I feel at this moment what con-
stitutes poetic inspirationa heart altogether
wrapped in one idea. As the bishop ended, and
I made my obeisance, she looked up and said,
Offer to your master the best wishes of an
23


unknown. 'Fell him he must come soon. Francis. I hear you are as good as married.
New friends await him; he must not despise Weislixgen. Would I were really so! My
them, though he is already so rich in old gentle Maria will be the happiness of my life,
ones. I would have answered, but the pas- The sweetness of her soul beams through her
-age betwixt my heart and my tongue was mild blue eyes, and, like an angel of innocence
dosed, and 1 only bowed. I would have given and love, she guides my heart to the paths of
all I had for permission to kiss but one of her > peace and felicity Pack up, and then to my
fingers : As 1 stood thus, the bishop let fall a castle. I will not to Bamberg, though St. Bede
pawn, and in stooping to pick it up, I touched came in person to fetch me.
the hem of her garment. Transport thrilled \_Exil Weislingen.
through my limbs, and 1 scarce know how I Francis. (Alone.) Not to Bamberg!
left the room. Heavens forbid But let me hope the best.
Weisi.ixgex. Is her husband at court? Maria is beautiful and amiable, and a prisoner
Fraxcis. She has been a widow these four or an invalid might easily fall in love with
months, and is residing at the court of Bam- her. Her eyes beam with compassion and
berg to divert her melancholy. You will see melancholy sympathy; but in thine, Adelaide,
her; and to meet her glance is to bask in the is life, fire, spirit. I would I am a fool;
sunshine of spring-. one glance from her has made me so. My
Weisi.ixgex. She would not make so strong master must to Bamberg, and I also, and either
an impression on me. recover my senses or gaze them quite away.
-4




Li eiitraut. (Plays and sings.)
Armed with quiver and bow,
With his torch all aglow,
Young Cupid comes winging his flight.
Courage glows in his eyes,
As adown from the skies,
He rushes, impatient for fight.
Up up!
On on !
Hark the bright quiver rings !
Hark the rustle of wings !
All hail to the delicate sprite !
They welcome the urchin ;
Ah, maidens, beware !
He finds every bosom
Unguarded and bare.
In the light of his flambeau
He kindles his darts;
They fondle and hug him
And press to their hearts.
Adelaide. Your thoughts are not in your
game. Check to the king !
Bishop. There is still a way of escape.
Adelaide. You will not be able to hold
out long. Check to the king !
25


Liebtraut. Were 1 a great prince, I
would not play at this game, and would for-
bid it at court and throughout the whole land.
Adelaide. Tis indeed a touchstone of
the brain.
Liebtraut. Not on that account. I would
rather hear a funeral bell, the cry of the
ominous bird, the howling of that snarling
watch-dog, conscience; rather would I hear
these through the deepest sleep, than from
bishops, knights and such beasts, the eternal
Check to the king !
Bishop. Into whose head could such an
idea enter ?
Liebtraut. A mans, for example, en-
dowed with a weak body and a strong con-
science, which, for the most part, indeed,
accompany each other. Chess is called a
royal game, and is said to have been invented
for a king, who rewarded the inventor with a
mine of wealth. If this be so, I can picture
him to myself. He was a minor, either in
understanding or in years, under the guardian-
ship of his mother or his wife; had down upon
his chin, and flaxen hair around his temples;
was pliant as a willow-shoot, and liked to play
at draughts with women, not from passion,
God forbid only for pastime. His tutor,
too active for a scholar, too intradtable for a
man of the world, invented the game, in usum
Delphini, that was so homogeneous with his
majestyand so on.
Adelaide. Checkmate! You should fill
up the chasms in our histories, Liebtraut.
[ They rise.
Liebtraut. To supply those in our family
registers would be more profitable. The merits
of our ancestors being available for a common
object with their portraits, namely, to cover
the naked sides of our chambers and of our
characters, one might turn such an occupation
to good account.
Bishop. He will not come, you say !
Adelaide. I beseech you, banish him from
your thoughts.
Bishop. What can it mean ?
Liebtraut. What! The reasons may be
told over like the beads of a rosary. He lias
been seized with a fit of compunction, of which
I could soon cure him.
Bishop. Do so ; ride to him instantly.
Liebtraut. My commission
Bishop. Shall be unlimited. Spare nothing
to bring him back.
Liebtraut. May I venture to use your
name, gracious lady?
Adelaide. With discretion.
Liebtraut. Thats a vague commission.
Adelaide. Do you know so little of me,
or are you so young as not to understand in
what tone you should speak of me to Weis-
lingen ?
Liebtraut. In the tone of a fowlers
whistle, I think.
Adelaide. You will never be reasonable.
Liebtraut. Does one ever become so,
gracious lady ?
Bishop. Go go! Take the best horse
in my stable; choose your servants, and bring
him hither.
Liebtraut. If I do not conjure him hither,
say that an old woman who charms warts and
freckles knows more of sympathy than I.
Bishop. Yet, what will it avail ? Berlich-
ingen has wholly gained him over. He will
no sooner be here than he will wish to return.
Liebtraut. He will wish it, doubtless;
but can he go? A princes squeeze of the
hand and the smiles of a beauty, from these
no Weislingen can tear himself away. I have
the honor to take my leave.
Bishop. A prosperous journey !
Adelaide. Adieu [Exit Liebtraut.
Bishop. When he is once here, I must
trust to you.
Adelaide. Would you make me your
lime-twig ?
Bishop. By no means.
Adelaide. Your call-bird then ?
Bishop. No ; that is Liebtrauts part. I
beseech you do not refuse to do for me what
no other can.
Adelaide. We shall see. [Exeunt.
SCENE II.Jaxthausen. A Hall in
Goetzs Castle.
Enter Goetz and Hans von Selbitz.
Selbitz. Every one will applaud you for
declaring feud against the Nurembergers.
Goetz. It would have eaten my very heart
away had I remained longer their debtor.. It
is clear that they betrayed my page to the
! Bambergers. They shall have cause to re-
member me.
Selbitz. They have an old grudge against
you.
Goetz. And I against them. I am glad
j they have begun the fray.
26


Selbitz. These free towns have always
taken part with the priests.
Goetz. They have good reason.
Selbitz. But we will cook their porridge
for them !
Goetz. I reckon upon you. Would that
the Burgomaster of Nuremberg, with his gold
chain round his neck, fell in our way, wed
astonish him with all his cleverness.
Selbitz. I hear Weislingen is again on
vour side. Does he really join in our league ?
Goetz. Not immediately. There are
reasons which prevent his openly giving us
assistance; but for the present it is quite
enough that he is not against us. The priest
without him is what the stole would be with-
out the priest!
Selbitz. When do we set forward ?
Goetz. To-morrow or next day. There
are merchants of Bamberg and Nuremberg
returning from the fair of Frankfortwe may
strike a good blow.
Selbitz. Let us hope so !
SCENE III.The Bishops Palace at
Bamberg.
Adelaide and her Waiting-Maid.
Adelaide. He is here, sayest thou ? I
can scarcely believe it.
Maid. Had I not seen him myself, I should
have doubted it.
Adelaide. The bishop should frame
Liebtraut in gold for such a masterpiece of
skill.
Maid. I saw him as he was about to enter
the palace. He was mounted on a gray
charger. The horse started when he came
on the bridge, and would not move forward.
The populace thronged up the street to see
him. They rejoiced at the delay of the un-
ruly horse. He was greeted on all sides, and
he thanked them gracefully all round. He
sat the curvetting steed with an easy indif-
ference, and by threats and soothing brought
him to the gate, followed by Liebtraut and a
few servants.
Adelaide. What do you think of him ?
Maid. I never saw a man who pleased me
so well. He is as like that portrait of the
emperor as if he were his son (pointing to a
pitturc)l His nose is somewhat smaller, but
just such gentle light-brown eyes, just such
fine light hair, and such a figure! A half
melancholy expression on his face; I know
not how, but he pleased me so well.
Adelaide. I am curious to see him.
Maid. Fie would be the husband for you!
Adelaide. Foolish girl!
Maid. Children and fools
Enter Liebtraut.
Liebtraut. Now, gracious lady, what do
I deserve ?
Adelaide. Horns from your wife! for
judging from the present sample of your per-
suasive powers you have certainly endangered
the honor of many a worthy family.
Liebtraut. Not so, be assured, gracious
lady.
Adelaide. How did you contrive to bring
him ?
Liebtraut. You'know how they catch
snipes, and why should I detail my little
stratagems to you? First, I pretended to
have heard nothing, did not understand the
reason of his behavior, and put him upon the
disadvantage of telling me the whole story at
lengththen I saw the matter in quite a dif-
ferent light to what he didcould not find
could not see, and so forth-then I gossipped
things great and small about Bamberg, and
recalled to his memory certain old recollec-
tions; and when I had succeeded in occupy-
ing his imagination I knitted together many
a broken association of ideas. He knew not
what to sayfelt a new attraction towards
Bamberg he would, and he would not.
When I found him begin to waver, and saw
him too much occupied with his own feelings
to suspeCt my sincerity, I threw over his head
a halter, woven of the three powerful cords,
beauty, court-favor and flattery, and dragged
him hither in triumph.
Adelaide. What said you of me?
Liebtraut. The simple truththat you
were in perplexity about your estates, and
had hoped as he had so much influence with
the emperor all would be satisfactorily
settled.
Adelaide. Tis well.
Liebtraut. The bishop will introduce him
to you.
Adelaide. I expect them. (Exit Lieb-
traut.) And with such feelings have I seldom
expeCted a visitor.
27


SCENE IV.The Spessart.
Enter Selbitz, Goetz ami George in the
armor and dress oj a trooper.
Goetz. So thou didst not find him,
George ?
George. He had ridden to Bamberg the
dav before with Liebtraut and two 'servants.
Goetz. I cannot understand what this
means.
Selbitz. I see it wellyour reconciliation
was almost too speedy to be lastingLiebtraut
is a cunning fellow, and has no doubt in-
veigled him over.
Goetz. Thinkst thou he will become a
traitor ?
Selbitz. The first step is taken.
Goetz. I will never believe it. Who
knows what he may have to do at courthis
affairs are still unarranged. Let us hope for
the best.
Selbitz. Would to Heaven he may de-
serve of your good opinion, and may act for
the best!
Goetz. A thought strikes me !We will
disguise George in the spoils of the Bamberg
trooper, and furnish him with the password
he may then ride to Bamberg, and see how
matters stand.
George. I have long wished to do so.
Goetz. It is thy first expedition. Be care-
ful, boy; I should be sorry if ill befell thee.
George. Never fear. I care not how many
of them crawl about me; I think no more of
them than of rats and mice. [Exeunt.
SCENE V.The Bishops Palace. PI is
Cabinet.
The Bishop and Weislingen.
Bishop. Then thou wilt stay no longer?
Weislingen. You would not have me
break my oath.
Bishop. I could have wished thou hadst
not sworn it. What evil spirit possessed thee?
Could I not have procured thy release without
that? Is my influence so small in the imperial
court ?
Weislingen. The thing is doneexcuse
it as you can.
Bishop. I cannot see that there was the
least necessity for taking such a step. To re-
nounce me? Were there not a thousand other
ways of procuring thy freedom? Had we not
his page? And would I not have given gold
enough to boot, and thus satisfied Berlich-
ingen? Our operations against him and his
confederates could have gone on But,
alas I do not reflect that I am talking to his
friend, who has joined him against me, and
can easily counterwork the mines he himself
has dug.
Weislingen. My gracious lord
Bishop. And yetwhen 1 again look on
thy face, again hear thy voice it is im-
possibleimpossible !
Weislingen. Farewell, good my lord !
Bishop. I give thee my blessingformerly
when we parted I was wont to say Till we
meet again Now Heaven grant we meet
no more !
Weislingen. Things may alter.
Bishop. Perhaps I may live to see thee ap-
pear as an enemy before my walls, carrying
havoc through the fertile plains which now
owe their flourishing condition to thee.
Weislingen. Never, my gracious lord !
Bishop. You cannot say so. My temporal
neighbors all have a grudge against mebut
while thou wert mine Go, Weislingen !
I have no more to say. Thou hast undone
much. Go
Weislingen. I know not what to answer.
[Exit Bishop.
Enter Francis.
Francis. The Lady Adelaide expedls you.
She is not well, but she will not let you depart
without bidding her adieu.
Weislingen. Come.
Francis. Do we go then for certain ?
Weislingen. This very night.
Francis. I feel as if I were about to leave
the world
Weislingen. I too, and as if besides I
knew not whither to go.
SCENE 'VI.Adelaides Apartment.
Adelaide and Waiting-Maid.
Maid. You are pale, gracious lady !
Adelaide. I love him not, yet I wish him
to stayfor I am fond of his company, though
I should dislike him for my husband.
Maid. Does your ladyship think he will go?
Adelaide. He is even now bidding the
bishop farewell.
28



Goetz von Berlichingen.
Maid. He has yet a severe struggle to
undergo.
Adelaide. What meanest thou?
Maid. Why do you ask, gracious lady ?
The barbed hook is in his heartere he tear
it away he must bleed to death.
Enter Weislingen.
Weislingen. You are not well, gracious
lady ?
Adelaide. That must be indifferent to
youyou leave us, leave us forever: what
matters it to you whether we live or die?
Weislingen. You do me injustice.-
Adelaide. I judge you as you appear.
Weislingen. Appearances are deceitful.
Adelaide. Then you are a chameleon.
Weislingen. Could you but see my heart
Adelaide. I should see fine things there.
Weislingen. Undoubtedly !You would
find your own image
Adelaide. Thrust into some dark corner
with the pictures of defunct ancestors! I be-
seech you, Weislingen, consider with whom
you speakfalse words are of value only when
they serve to veil our actionsa discovered
masquerader plays a pitiful part. You do not
disown your deeds, yet your words belie them;
what are we to think of you?
Weislingen. What you will I am so
agonized at reflecting on what I am, that I
little reck for what I am taken.
Adelaide. You came to say farewell.
Weislingen. Permit me to kiss your hand,
and I will say adieu You remind me
I did not thinkbut I am troublesome
Adelaide. You misinterpret me. Since
you will depart, I only wished to assist your
resolution.
Weislingen. Oh, say rather, I must!
were I not compelled by my knightly word
my solemn engagement
Adelaide. Go to Talk of that to maid-
ens who read the tale of Theuerdanck, and
wish that they had such a husband.Knightly
word !Nonsense !
Weislingen. You do not think so?
Adelaide. On my honor, you are dis-
sembling. What have you promised ? and to
whom? You have pledged your alliance to a
traitor to the emperor, at the very moment
when he incurred the ban of the empire by
taking you prisoner. Such an agreement is
no more binding than an extorted, unjust
oath. And do not our laws release you from
such oaths? Go, tell that to children, who
believe in Rubezahl. There is something be-
hind all this.'lo become an enemy of the
empirea disturber of public happiness and
tranquillity, an enemy of the emperor, the
associate of a robber!Thou, Weislingen,
with thy gentle soul!
Weislingen. Did you but know him !
Adelaide. I would" deal justly with Goetz.
He has a lofty indomitable spirit, and woe to
thee, therefore, Weislingen. Go, and persuade
thyself thou art his companion. Go, and re-
ceive his commands. Thou art courteous,
gentle
Weislingen. And he too.
Adelaide. But thou art yielding, and he
is stubborn. Imperceptibly will he draw thee
on. Thou wilt become the slave of a baron ;
thou that mightest command princes !Yet it
is cruel to make you discontented with your
future position.
Weislingen. Did you but know what kind-
ness he showed me.
Adelaide. Kindness!Do you make such
a merit of that? It was his duty. And what
would you have lost had he acted otherwise?
I would rather he had done so. An overbear-
ing man like
Weislingen. You speak of your enemy.
Adelaide. I speak for your freedom ; yet
I know not why I should take so much interest
in it. Farewell !
Weislingen. Permit me, but a moment.
[ Takes her hand. A pause.
Adelaide. Have you aught to say?
Weislingen. I must hence.
Adelaide. Then go.
Weislingen. Gracious lady, I cannot.
Adelaide. You must.
Weislingen. And is this your parting look?
Adelaide. Go, I am unwell, very inoppor-
tunely.
Weislingen. Look not on me thus !
Adelaide. Wilt thou be our enemy, and
yet have us smile upon thee ? Go !
Weislingen. Adelaide!
Adelaide. I hate thee !
Enter Francis.
Francis. Noble sir, the bishop inquires
for you.
Adelaide. Go go !
Francis. He begs you to come instantly.
Adelaide. Go go !
Weislingen. I do not say adieu : I shall
see you again.
[.Exeunt Weislingen and Francis.
38
29


Adelaide. Thou wilt see me again? AVe
must provide for that. Margaret, when he
comes, refuse him admittance. Say I am ill,
have a headache, am asleep, anything. If this
does not detain him, nothing will. [Exeunt.
leave in confusion the various affairs entrusted
to me by the bishop, without at least so ar-
ranging them that my successor may be able
to continue where I left off. That I can do
without breach of faith to Berlichingen, and
SCENE VII.An Ante-room.
Weislingex and Francis.
Weisi.ixgen. She will not see me !
Francis. Night draws on ; shall we saddle?
Weislingex. She will not see me !
Francis. Shall I order the horses?
Weislingex. It is too late ; we stay here.
Francis. God be praised. \_Exit. \
Weislingex. (Alone.) Thou stayest! Be
on thy guardthe temptation is great. My
horse started at the castle gate. My good
angel stood before him, he knew the danger
that awaited me. Yet it would be wrong to
when it is done no one shall detain me. Yet
it would have been better that I had never
come. But I will awayto-morrowor next
day:-tis decided ! [Exit.
SCENE VIII. The Spessart.
Enter Goetz, Selbitz and George.
Selbitz. You see it has turned out as I
prophesied.
Goetz. No, no, no.
George. I tell you the truth, believe me.
30


Goetz von Bci'lichinvcn.
I did as you commanded, took the dress and
password of the Bamberg trooper, and es-
corted some peasants of the Lower Rhine,
who paid my expenses for my convoy.
Selbitz. In that disguise ? It might have
cost thee dear.
George. So I begin to think, now that its
over. A trooper who thinks of danger be-
forehand will never do anything great. I got
safely to Bamberg, and in the very first inn I
heard them tell how the bishop and Weislingen
were reconciled, and how Weislingen was to
marry the widow of Von Walldorf.
Goetz. Mere gossip!
Selbitz. His evil conscience degrades him
more than thy condition does thee.
George. Art thou of Bamberg? said
he. The Knight of Berlichingen greets
you, said I, and I am to inquire
Come to my apartment to-morrow morn-
ing, quoth he, and we will speak further.
Goetz. And you went?
George. Yes, certainly, I Went, and waited
in his ante-chamber a long, long timeand
his pages, in their silken doublets, stared at
me from head to foot. Stare on, thought I.
At length I was admitted. He seemed angry.
But what cared I? I gave my message. He
George. I saw him as he led her to table.
She is lovely, by my faith, most lovely We
all bowedshe thanked us all. He nodded,
and seemed highly pleased. They passed on,
and everybody murmured, What a handsome
pair!
Goetz. That may be.
George. Listen further. The next day as
he went to mass, I watched my opportunity;
he was attended only by his squire; I stood
at the steps, and whispered to him as he passed,
A few words from your friend Berlichingen.
He startedI marked the confession of guilt
in his face. He had scarcely the heart to look
at meme, a poor troopers boy !
began blustering like a coward who wants to
look brave. He wondered that you should
take him to task through a troopers boy.
That angered me. There are but two sorts
of people, said I, true men and scoundrels,
and I serve Goetz of Berlichingen. Then he
began to talk all manner of nonsense, which
all tended to one point, namely, that you had
hurried him into an agreement, that he owed
you no allegiance, and would have nothing to
do with you.
Goetz. Hadst thou that from his own
mouth ?
George. That, and yet more. He threat-
ened me
31


(iokiv. It is enough. He is lost forever. :
Faith and eonfidence, again have ye deceived
me. Poor Maria I how am I to break this to
you ?
Selbitz. I would rather lose my other leg
than be such a rascal.
SCENIC IX.Hall in the Pishops Palace
at Bamberg.
Adelaide and Weislingen discovered.
Adelaide. Time begins to hang insup-
portable heavy here. I dare not speak seri-
ously, and I am ashamed to trifle with. you.
Ennui, thou art worse than a slow fever.
Weislingen. Are you tired of me already?
Adelaide. Not so much of you as of your
society. I would you had gone when you
wished, and that we had not detained you.
Weislingen. Such is womans favor! At
first she fosters with maternal warmth our
dearest hopes; and then, like an inconstant-
hen, she forsakes the nest, and abandons the
infant brood to death and decay.
Adelaide. Yes, you may rail at women.
The reckless gambler tears and curses the
harmless cards which have been the instru-
ments of his loss. But let me tell you some-
thing about men. What are you that talk
about fickleness? You that are seldom even
what you would wish to be, never what you
should be. Princes in holiday garb! the envy
of the vulgar. Oh, what would a tailors wife
not give for a necklace of the pearls on the
skirt of your robe, which you kick back con-
temptuously with your heels.
Weislingen. You are severe.
Adelaide. It is but the antistrophe to your
song. Ere I knew you, Weislingen, I felt like
the tailors wife. Hundred-tongued rumor, to
speak without metaphor, had so extolled you,
in quack-dodlor fashion, that I was tempted
to wishOh, that I could but see this quin-
tessence of manhood, this phoenix, Weislingen!
My wish was granted.
Weislingen. And the phoenix turned out
a dunghill cock.
Adelaide. No, Weislingen, I took an in-
terest in you.
Weislingen. So it appeared.
Adelaide. So it wasfor you really sur-
passed your reputation. The multitude prize
only the reflection of worth. For my part, I
do not care to scrutinize the charadter of those
32
whom I esteem; so we lived on for some time.
I felt there was a deficiency in you, but knew
not what 1 missed ; at length my eyes were
openedI saw instead of the energetic being
who gave impulse to the affairs of a kingdom,
and was ever alive to the voice of famewho
was wont to pile princely projedt on projedt,
till, like the mountains of the Titans, they
reached the cloudsinstead of all this, I saw
a man as querulous as a love-sick poet, as mel-
ancholy as a slighted damsel, and more in-
dolent than an old bachelor. I first ascribed
it to your misfortune which still lay at your
heart, and excused you as well as I could; but
now that it daily becomes worse, you must
really forgive me if I withdraw my favor from
you. You possess it unjustly: I bestowed it
for life on a hero who cannot transfer it to you.
Weislingen. Dismiss me, then.
Adelaide. Not till all chance of recovery
is lost. Solitude is fatal in your distemper.
Alas poor man you are as dejected as one
whose first love has proved false, and therefore
I wont give you up. Give me your hand,
and pardon what affection has urged me to say.
Weislingen. Couldst thou but love me,
couldst thou but return the fervor of my pas-
sion with the least glow of sympathy.Ade-
laide, thy reproaches are most unjust. Couldst
thou but guess the hundredth part of my suffer-
ings, thou wouldst not have tortured me so
unmercifully with encouragement, indifference
and contempt. You smile. To be reconciled
to myself after the step I have taken must be
the work of more than one day. How can I
plot against the man who has been so recently
and so vividly restored to my affedtion ?
Adelaide. Strange being Can you love
him whom you envy ? It is like sending pro-
visions to an enemy.
Weislingen. I well know that here there
must be no .dallying. He is aware that I am
again Weislingen ; and he will watch his ad-
vantage over us. Besides, Adelaide, we are
not so sluggish as you think. Our troopers
are reinforced .and watchful, our schemes are
proceeding, and the Diet of Augsburg will, I
hope, soon bring them to a favorable issue.
Adelaide. You go there?
Weislingen. If I could carry a glimpse
of hope with me. [Kisses her hand.
Adelaide. O ye infidels! Always signs
and wonders required. Go, Weislingen, and
accomplish the work The interest of the
bishop, yours and mine, are all so linked to-
gether, that were it only for policys sake


Weisungen. You jest.
Adelaide. I do not jest. The haughty
duke has seized my property. Goetz will not
be slow to ravage yours; and if we do not
hold together, as our enemies do, and gain
over the emperor to our side, we are lost.
Weisungen. I fear nothing. Most of
the princes think with us. The emperor
needs assistance against the Turks, and it is
therefore just that he should help us in his
turn. What rapture for me to rescue your
fortune from rapacious enemies; to crush the
mutinous chivalry of Swabia; to restore peace
to the bishopric, and then
Adelaide. One day brings on another,
and fate is mistress of the future.
Weisungen. But we must lend our en-
deavors.
Adelaide. We do so.
Weisungen. But seriously.
Adelaide. Well, then, seriously. Do but
go
Weisungen. Enchantress ! [Exeunt.
SCENE X.An Inn.
The Bridal of a Peasant.
[The Brides Father, Bride, Bridegroom
and other Country-folks, Goetz of Ber-
lichingen and Hans of Selbitz all
discovered at table. Troopers and
Peasants attend.
Goetz. It was the best way thus to settle
your lawsuit by a merry bridal.
Brides Father. Better than ever I could
have dreamed of, noble sirto spend my days
in quiet with my neighbor, and have a daughter
provided for to boot.
Bridegroom. And I to get the bone of
contention and a pretty wife into the bargain !
Ay, the prettiest in the whole village. Would
to Heaven you had consented sooner.
Goetz. How long have you been at law?
Brides Father. About eight years. I
would rather have the fever for twice that
time than go through with it again from the
beginning. For these periwigged gentry never
give a decision till you tear it out of their very
hearts; and, after all, what do you get for your
pains? The devil fly away with the assessor
Sapupi for a damned swarthy Italian !
Bridegroom. Yes, hes a pretty fellow; I
was before him twice.
Brides Father. And I thrice; and look
ye, gentlemen, we got a judgment at last,
which set forth that he was as much in the
right as I, and I as much as he ; so there we
stood like a couple of fools, till a good Provi-
dence put it into my head to give him my
daughter, and the ground besides.
Goetz. (Drinks.) To your better under-
standing for the future.
Brides Father. With all my heart! But
come what may, Ill never go to law again as
long as I live. What a mint of money it costs!
For every bow made to you by a procurator,
you must come down with your dollars.
Selbitz. But there are annual imperial
visitations.
Brides Father. I have never heard of
them. Many an extra dollar have they con-
trived to squeeze out of me. The expenses
are horrible.
Goetz. How mean you?
Brides Father. Why, look you, these
gentlemen of the law are always holding out
their hands. The assessor alone, God forgive
him, eased me of eighteen golden guilders.
Bridegroom. Who?
Brides Father. Why, who else but
Sapupi ?
Goetz. That is infamous.
Brides Father. Yes, he asked twenty;
and there I had to pay them in the great hall
of his fine country-house. I thought my heart
would burst with anguish. For look you, my
lord, I am well enough off with my house and
little farm, but how could I raise the ready
cash ? I stood there, God knows how it was
with me. I had not a single farthing to carry
me on my journey. At last I took courage
and told him my case: when he saw I was
desperate, he flung me back a couple of guil-
ders, and sent me about my business.
Bridegroom. Impossible! Sapupi ?
Brides Father. Ay, he himself!What
do you stare at ?
Bridegroom. Devil take the rascal! He
took fifteen guilders from me too?
Brides Father. The deuce he did !
Selbitz. They call us robbers, Goetz !
Brides Father. Bribed on both sides!
Thats why the judgment fell out so queer.
Oh, the scoundrel!
Goetz. You must not let this pass un-
noticed.
Brides Father. What can we do ?
Goetz. Whygo to Spire where there is
an imperial visitation : make your complaint;
39
33


they must inquire into it, and help you to your
own again.
Bridegroom. Does your honor think we
shall succeed ?
Goetz. If I might take him in hand, I
could promise it you.
Selbitz. The sum is worth an attempt.
Goetz. Ay; many a day have I ridden
out for the fourth part of it.
Brides Father. (2oBridegroom.) What
thinkst thou ?
Bridegroom. Well try, come what
may.
Enter George.
George. The Nurembergers have set out.
Goetz. Whereabouts are they?
George. If we ride off quietly we shall
just catch them in the wood betwixt Berheim
and Miihlbach.
Selbitz. Excellent!
Goetz. Well, my children, God bless you,
and help every man to his own !
Brides Father. Thanks, gallant sir!
Will you not stay to supper?
Goetz. I cannot. Adieu!
[.Exeunt Goetz, Selbitz and Troopers.
34


ACT III.
SCENE I.A Garden at Augsburg.
Enter two Merchants of Nuremberg.
First Merchant. Well stand here, for
the emperor must pass this wayC He is just
coming up the long avenue.
Second Merchant. Who is that with him?
First Merchant. Adelbert of Weislingen.
Second Merchant. The bishops friend.
Thats lucky !
First Merchant. Well throw ourselves
at his feet.
Second Merchant. See they come.
Enter the Emperor and Weislingen.
First Merchant. He looks displeased.
Emperor. I am disheartened, Weislingen.
When I review my past life, I am ready to
despair. So many halfay, and wholly ruined
undertakingsand all because the pettiest feu-
datory of the empire thinks more of gratifying
his own whims than of seconding my endeavors.
[ The Merchants throw themselves at hisfeet.
First Merchant. Most mighty! Most
gracious!
Emperor. Who are ye ? What seek ye ?
First Merchant. Poor merchants of Nu-
remberg, your majestys devoted servants, who
implore your aid. Goetz von Berlichingen
and Hans von Selbitz fell upon thirty of us as
we journeyed from the fair of Frankfort, under
an escort from Bamberg; they overpowered
and plundered us. We implore your imperial
35


assistance to obtain redress, else we are all
ruined men, and shall be compelled to beg our
bread.
Emperor. Good heavens! What is this?
The one has but one hand, the other but one
leg; if they both had two hands and two legs
what would you do then ?
First Merchant. We most humbly be-
seech your majesty to cast a look of compassion
upon our unfortunate condition.
Emperor. How is this?If a merchant
loses a bag of pepper, all Germany is to rise
in arms; but when business is to be done, in
which the imperial majesty and the empire are
interested, should it concern dukedoms, prin-
cipalities, or kingdoms, there is no bringing
you together.
Weislingen. You come at an unseasonable
time. Go, and stay at Augsburg for a few
days.
Merchants. We make our most humble
obeisance. [Exeunt Merchants.
Emperor. Again new disturbances; they
multiply like the hydras heads !
Weislingen. And can only be extirpated
with fire and sword.
Emperor. Do you think so?
Weisi.ixgex. Nothing seems to me more
advisable, could your majesty and the princes
but accommodate your other unimportant dis-
putes. It is not the body of the state that
complains of this malady Franconia and
Swabia alone glow with the embers of civil
discord ; and even there many of the nobles
and free barons long for quiet. Could we but
crush Sickingen, Selbitzandandand Ber-
lichingen, the others would fall asunder; for it
is the spirit of these knights which quickens the
turbulent multitude.
Emperor. Fain would I spare them ; they
are noble and hardy. Should I be engaged in
war, they would follow me to the field.
Weislingen. It is to be wished they had
at all times known their duty; moreover it
would be dangerous to reward their mutinous
bravery by offices of trust. For it is exaCtly
this imperial mercy and forgiveness which they
have hitherto so grievously abused, and upon
which the hope and confidence of their league
rest, and this spirit cannot be quelled till we
have wholly destroyed their power in the eyes
of the world, and taken from them all hope
of ever recovering their lost influence.
Emperor. You advise severe measures,
then ?
Weislingen. I see no other means of
36
quelling the spirit of insurrection which has
seized upon whole provinces. Do we not al-
ready hear the bitterest complaints from the
nobles, that their vassals and serfs rebel against
them, question their authority, and threaten to
curtail their hereditary prerogatives? A pro-
ceeding which would involve the most fearful
consequences.
Emperor. This were a fair occasion for
proceeding against Berlichingen and Selbitz;
but I will not have them personally injured.
Could they be taken prisoners, they should
swear to renounce their feuds, and to remain
in their own castles and territories upon their
knightly parole. At the next session of the
: Diet we will propose this plan.
| Weislingen. A general exclamation of
joyful assent will spare your majesty the trouble
of particular detail. [Exeunt.
SCENE II.Jaxthausen.
Enter Goetz and Franz von Sickingf.n.
Sickingen. Yes, my friend, I come to beg
the heart and hand of your noble sister.
Goetz. I would you had come sooner.
Weislingen, during his imprisonment, obtained
her affeClions, proposed for her, and I gave my
consent. I let the bird loose, and he now de-
spises the benevolent hand that fed him in his
distress. He flutters about to seek his food,
God knows upon what hedge.
Sickingen. Is this so?
Goetz. Even as I tell you.
Sickingen. He has broken a double bond.
Tis well for you that you were not more closely-
allied with the traitor.
Goetz. The poor maiden passes her life in
lamentation and prayer.
Sickingen. I will comfort her.
Goetz. What! Could you make up your
mind to marry a forsaken
Sickingen. It is to the honor of you both
to have been deceived by him. Should the
poor girl be caged in a cloister because the
first man who gained her love proved a villain ?
Not so; I insist on it. She shall be mistress
of my castles!
Goetz. I tell you he was not indifferent to
her.
Sickingen. Do you think I cannot efface
the recolleClion of such a wretch ? Let us go
to her. [Exeunt.




SCENE III. The Camp of the Party sent to
execute the imperial Mandate.
Imperial Captain and Officers discovered.
Captain. We must be cautious, and spare
our people as much as possible. Besides, we
have stri6t orders to overpower and take him
alive. It will be difficult to obey; for who
will engage with him hand to hand?
First Officer. Tis true. And he will
fight like a wild boar. Besides, he has never in
his whole life injured any of us, so each will
be glad to leave to the other the honor of risk-
ing life and limb to please the emperor.
Second Officer. Twere shame to us
should we not take him. Had I him once
by the ears, he should not easily escape.
First Officer. Dont seize him with your
teeth, however, he might chance to run away
with your jaw-bone. My good young sir, such
men are not taken like a runaway thief.
Second Officer. We shall see.
Captain. By this time he must have had
our summons. We must not delay. I mean
to despatch a troop to watch his motions.
Second Officer. Let me lead it.
Captain. You are unacquainted with the
country.
Second Officer. I have a servant who
was born and bred here.
Captain. That will do. [Exeunt.
SCENE IV.Jaxihauscn.
Sickingen. (Alone.) All goes as I wish !
She was somewhat startled at my proposal, and
looked at me from head to foot; Ill wager
she was comparing me with her gallant.
Thank Heaven I can stand the scrutiny!
She answered little and confusedly. So much
the better Let it work for a time. A pro-
posal of marriage does not come amiss after
such a cruel disappointment.
Enter Goetz.
Sickingen. What news, brother?
Goetz. They have laid me under the ban.
Sickingen. How?
Goetz. There, read the edifying epistle.
The emperor has issued an edi<5t against me,
which gives my body for food to the beasts of
the earth and the fowls of the air.
Sickingen. They shall first furnish them
with a dinner themselves. I am here in the
very nick of time.
Goetz. No, Sickingen, you must leave me.
Your great undertakings might be ruined
should you become the enemy of the emperor
at so unseasonable a time. Besides, you can
be of more use to me by remaining neutral.
The worst that can happen is my being made
prisoner; and then your good word with the
emperor, who esteems you, may rescue me
from the misfortune into which your untimely
assistance would irremediably plunge us both.
To what purpose should you do otherwise?
These troops are marching against me; and
if they knew we were united, their numbers
would only be increased, and our position
would consequently be no better. The em-
peror is at the fountain-head; and I should
be utterly ruined were it as easy to inspire
soldiers with courage as to collect them into
a body.
Sickingen. But I can privately reinforce
you with a score of troopers.
Goetz. Good. I have already sent George
to Selbitz, and to my people in the neighbor-
hood. My dear brother, when my forces are
colle<5ted, they will be such a troop as few
princes can bring together.
Sickingen. It will be small against the
multitude.
Goetz. One wolf is too many for a whole
flock of sheep.
Sickingen. But if they have a good shep-
herd ?
Goetz. Never fear! They are all hire-
lings; and then even the best knight can do
but little if he cannot a<5l as he pleases. It
happened once that, to oblige the palsgrave,
I went to serve against Conrad Schotten; they
then presented me with a paper of instructions
from the chancery, which set forthThus and
thus must you proceed. I threw down the
paper before the magistrates, and told them I
could not a<5t according to it; that something
might happen unprovided for in my instruc-
tions, and that I must use my own eyes and
judge what was best to be done.
Sickingen. Good luck, brother! I will
hence, and send thee what men I can coiled
in haste.
Goetz. Come first to the women. I left
them together. I would you had her consent
before you depart! Then send me the troopers,
and come back in private to carry away my
Maria; for my castle, I fear, will shortly be
no abode for women.
Sickingen. We will hope for the best.
[Exeunt.

io
37


SCENE V.Bamberg. Adelaides Chamber.
Adelaide and Francis.
Adelaide. They have already set out to
enforce the ban against both?
Francis. Yes; and my master has the
happiness of marching against your enemies.
I would gladly have gone also, however re-
joiced I always am at being despatched to you.
But I will away instantly, and soon return with
good news; my master has allowed me to do so.
Adelaide. How is he?
Francis. He is well, and commanded me
to kiss your hand.
Adelaide. There !Thy lips glow.
Francis. (Aside, pressing his breast.) Here
glows something yet more fiery. (Aloud.) Gra-
cious lady, your servants are the most fortunate
of beings!
Adelaide. Who goes against Berlichingen ?
Francis. The Baron von Sirau. Farewell!
Dearest, most gracious lady, I must away.
Forget me not!
Adelaide. Thou must first take some rest
and refreshment.
Francis. I need none, for I have seen you !
I am neither weary nor hungry.
Adelaide. I know thy fidelity.
Francis. Ah, gracious lady !
Adelaide. You can never hold out; you
must repose and refresh yourself.
Francis. You are too kind to a poor
youth. \_Exit.
Adelaide. The tears stood in his eyes. I
love him from my heart. Never did man at-
tach himself to me with such warmth of affec-
tion. \Eodt.
SCENE VI.Jaxthausen.
Goetz and George.
George. He wants to speak with you in
person. I do not know himhe is a tall,
well-made man, with keen dark eyes.
Goetz. Admit him. \_Exit George.
Enter Lerse.
Goetz. God save you What bring you ?
Lerse. Myself: not much, but such as it
is, it is at your service.
Goetz. You are welcome, doubly welcome!
A brave man, and at a time when, far from ex-
pecting new friends, I was in hourly fear of
losing the old. Your name?
Lerse. Franz Lerse.
Goetz. I thank you, Franz, for making
me acquainted with a brave man !
Lerse. I made you acquainted with me
once before, but then you did not thank me
for my pains.
Goetz. I have no recolledtion of you.
Lerse. I should be sorry if you had. Do
you recolledt when, to please the palsgrave,
you rode against Conrad Schotten, and went
through Hassfurt on an All-hallow eve?
Goetz. I remember it well.
Lerse. And twenty-five troopers encoun-
tered you in a village by the way?
Goetz. Exactly. I at first took them for
only twelve. I divided my party, which
amounted to but sixteen, and halted in the
village behind the barn, intending to let them
ride by. Then I thought of falling upon them
in the rear, as I had concerted with the other
troop.
Lerse. We saw you, however, and sta-
tioned ourselves on a height above the village.
You drew up beneath the hill and halted.
When we perceived that you did not intend
to come up to us we rode down to you.
Goetz. And then I saw for the first time
that I had thrust my hand into the fire. Five-
and-twenty against eight is no jesting business.
Everard Truchsess killed one of my followers,
for which I knocked him off his horse. Had
they all behaved like him and one other
trooper, it would have been all over with me
and my little band.
Lerse. And that trooper
Goetz. Was as gallant a fellow as I ever
saw. He attacked me fiercely; and when I
thought I had given him enough and was en-
gaged elsewhere, he was upon me again, and
laid on like a fury : he cut quite through my
armor, and wounded me in the arm.
Lerse. Have you forgiven him ?
Goetz. He pleased me only too well.
Lerse. I hope then you have cause to be
contented with me, since the proof of my valor
was on your own person.
Goetz. Art thou he ? O welcome wel-
come Canst thou boast, Maximilian, that
amongst thy followers thou hast gained one
after this fashion ?
Lerse. I wonder you did not sooner hit
upon me.
Goetz. How could I think that the man
would engage in my service who did his best
to overpower me ?
Lerse. Even so, my lord. From my youth
upwards I have served as a trooper, and have
38


had a tussle with many a knight. I was over-
joyed when we met you; for I had heard of
your prowess, and wished to know you. You
saw I gave way, and that it was not from
cowardice, for I returned to the charge. In
short, I learned to know you, and from that
hour I resolved to enter your service.
Goetz. How long wilt thou engage with
me?
Lerse. For a year, without pay.
Goetz. No; thou shalt have as the others;
nay more, as befits him who gave me so much
work at Remlin.
Enter George.
George. Hans of Selbitz greets you. To-
morrow he will be here with fifty men.
Goetz. Tis well.
George. There is a troop of Imperialists
riding down the hill, doubtless to reconnoitre. |
Goetz. How many?
George. About fifty.
Goetz. Only fifty! Come, Lerse, well
have a slash at them, so that when Selbitz
comes he may find some work done to his
hand.
Lerse. Twill be capital practice.
Goetz. To horse! [Exeunt.
SCENE VII.A Wood on the borders of a
Morass.
Two Imperialist Troopers meeting.
First Imperialist. What dost thou here?
Second Imperialist. I have leave of ab-
sence for ten minutes. Ever since our quarters
were beat up last night I have had such violent
attacks that I cant sit on horseback for two
minutes together.
First Imperialist. Is the party far ad-
vanced ?
Second Imperialist. About three miles
into the wood.
First Imperialist. Then why are you
playing truant here?
Second Imperialist. Prithee, betray me
not. I am going to the next village to see if
I cannot get some warm bandages to relieve
my complaint. But whence comest thou?
First Imperialist. I am bringing our
officer some wine and meat from the nearest
village.
Second Imperialist. So, so he stuffs
himself under our very noses, and we must
starve ; a fine example !
First Imperialist. Come back with me,
rascal I
^
39


Second Imperialist. Call me a fool, if I
do There are plenty in our troop who would
gladlv fast, to be as far away as 1 am.
[ Tramping oj horses heard.
First Imperialist. Hearst thou?Horses!
Second Imperialist. Oh dear! oh dear!
First Imperialist. Ill get up into this
tree.
Second Imperialist. And Ill hide among
the rushes. [ They hide themselves.
Enter on horseback, Goetz, Fkrse, George
and 'Troopers, all completely armed.
Goetz. Away into the wood, by the ditch
on the left,then we have them in the rear.
[ They gallop off.
First Imperialist. (Descending.) This is
a bad businessMichael !He answers not
Michael, the}' are gone ! ( Goes towards the
marsh.) Alas, he is sunk !Michael !Fie
hears me not: he is suffocated.Poor coward, :
art thou done for?We are slain.Enemies !
Enemies on all sides !
Re-enter Goetz and George on horseback.
Goetz. Yield thee, fellow, or thou diest!
Imperialist. Spare my life !
Goetz. Thy sword !George, lead him to !
the other prisoners whom Terse is guarding
yonder in the wood.I must pursue their |
fugitive leader. [Exit.
Imperialist. What has become of the
knight, our officer?
George. My master struck him head over
heels from his horse, so that his plume stuck
in the mire. His troopers got him up, and off
they were as if the devil were behind them.
[Exeunt.
SCENE Ylll. Camp of the Imperialists.
Captain and First Officer.
First Officer. They fly from afar towards
the camp.
Captain. He is most likely hard at their
heels. Draw out fifty as far as the mill; if he
follows up the pursuit too far you may perhaps
entrap him. [Exit Officer.
The Second Officer is borne in.
Captain. Flow now, my young sirhave
you got a cracked headpiece ?
Officer. A plague upon you The stoutest
helmet went to shivers like glass. The de-
mon !he ran upon me as if he would strike
me into the earth !
Captain. 'Thank God that you have escaped
with your life.
Officer. 'There is little left to be thankful
for; two of my ribs are brokenwheres the
surgeon ? [lie is carried off.
SCENE IX. Jaxthausen.
Enter Goetz and Selbitz.
Goetz. And what say you to the ban,
Selbitz?
Selbitz. Tis a trick of Weislingens.
Goetz. Do you think so?
Selbitz. I do not thinkI know it.
Goetz. How so?
Selbitz. He was at the Diet, I tell thee,
and near the emperors person.
Goetz. Well then, we shall frustrate
another of his schemes.
Selbitz. I hope so.
Goetz. We will away, and course these
hares.
SCENE X. The Imperial Camp.
Captain, Officers and Followers.
Captain. We shall gain nothing at this
work, sirs! Fie beats one troop after another;
and whoever escapes death or captivity would
rather fly to Turkey than return to the camp.
'Thus our force diminishes daily. We must
: attack him once for'all, and in earnest. I will
go myself, and he shall find with whom he has
! to deal.
Officer. We are all content; but he is so
well acquainted with the country, and knows
every path and ravine so thoroughly, that he
will be as difficult to find as a rat in a barn.
Captain. I warrant you well ferret him
out. On towards Jaxthausen Whether he
like it or not, he must come to defend his
castle.
Officer. Shall our whole force march ?
Captain. Yes, certainly do you know
that a hundred of us are melted away already?
Officer. Then let us away with speed,
before the whole snowball dissolves; for
this is warm work, and we stand here like
butter in the sunshine.
[Exeunta march sounded.
40


SCENE XI.Mountains and a Wood.
Goetz, Selbitz and Troopers.
Goetz. They are coming in full force. It was
high time that Sickingens troopers joined us.
Selbitz. We will divide our partyI will
take the left hand by the hill.
Goetz. Goodand do thou, Lerse, lead
fifty men straight through the wood on the
right. They are coming across the heathI
will draw up opposite to them. George, stay
by mewhen you see them attack me, then
fall upon their flank: well beat the knaves
into a mummythey little think we can race
them. ______ [Exeunt.
SCENE XII. A Heathon one side an
Eminence, with a ruined Tower, on the
other the Forest.
Enter marching, the Captain of the Impe-
rialists with Officers and his Squadron.
Drums and standards.
Captain. He halts upon the heath thats
too impudent. He shall smart for itwhat!
311
4i


not fear the torrent that threatens to over-
whelm him !
Oiticer. I had rather you did not head
the troops: he looks as if lie meant to plant
the first that comes upon him in the mire with
his head downmost. Prithee, ride in the rear.
('actain. Not so.
Officer. I entreat you. You are the knot
which unites this bundle of hazel-twigs; loose
it, and he will break them separately like so
many reeds.
Captain. Sound, trumpeterand let us
blow him to hell!
[, / charge sounded. Exeunt in full career.
Selbitz, udth his Troopers, comes from
behind the hill, galloping.
Sklbitz. Follow me! They shall wish
that they could multiply their hands.
[ They gallop across the stage, et exeunt.
Loud alarmTerse and his party sally
from the wood.
Lerse. Ho to the rescue Goetz is al-
most surrounded.Gallant Selbitz, thou hast
cut thy waywe will sow the heath with these
thistle heads. \_Gallop off.
A loud alarm, with shouting and firing for
some minutes. Selbitz is borne in wounded
by two Troopers.
Selbitz. Leave me here, and hasten to
Goetz.
First Trooper. Let us stay, siryou need
our aid.
Selbitz. Get one of you on the watch-
tower, and tell me how it goes.
First Trooper. How shall I get up?
Second Trooper. Mount upon my shoul-
ders you can then reach the ruined part, and
thence scramble up to the opening.
[First Trooper gets up into the tower.
First Trooper. Alas, sir!
Selbitz. What seest thou?
First Trooper. Your troopers fly towards
the hill.
Selbitz. Rascally cowards I would that
they stood their ground, and I had a ball
through my head Ride, one of you, full
speed Curse and thunder them back to the
field Seest thou Goetz !
\_Exit Second Trooper.
'Trooper. I see his three black feathers
floating in the midst of the wavy tumult.
Selbitz. Swim, brave swimmer! I lie here.
Trooper. A white plumewhose is that?
Selbitz. The captains.
'Trooper. Goetz gallops upon himcrash !
Down he goes!
Selbi tz. The captain ?
'Trooper. A'es, sir.
Selbitz. Hurrah hurrah !
'Trooper. Alas! alas! I see Goetz no more.
Selbitz. Then die, Selbitz !
Trooper. A dreadful tumult where he
stoodGeorges blue plume vanishes too.
Selbitz. Come down Dost thou not see
Lerse ?
Trooper. No. Everything is in confusion.
Selbitz. No more. Come down.Flow-
do Sickingens men bear themselves?
'Trooper. Wellone of them flies to the
: wood another another a whole troop.
Goetz is lost !
Selbitz. Come down.
Trooper. I cannot.Hurrah hurrah I
see Goetz, I see George.
Selbitz. On horseback ?
'Trooper. Ay, ay, high on horseback!
Victory victory !they fly.
Selbitz. 'The Imperialists?
Trooper. Yes, standard and all, Goetz
behind them. They disperse,Goetz reaches
the ensignhe seizes the standard; he halts.
A handful of men rally round him. My com-
rade reaches himthey come this way.
Enter Goetz. George, Lerse ^/Troopers,
on horseback.
Selbitz. Joy to thee, Goetz Victory !
victory!
Goetz. (Dismounting.) Dearly, dearly
bought. Thou art wounded, Selbitz !
Selbitz. But thou dost live and hast con-
quered I have done little ; and my dogs
of troopers How hast thou come off?
Goetz. For the present, well And here
I thank George, and thee, Lerse, for my life.
I unhorsed the captain, they stabbed my horse,
and pressed me hard. George cut his way to
me, and sprang off his horse. I threw my-
self like lightning upon it, and he appeared
, suddenly like a thunderbolt upon another.
How earnest thou by thy steed ?
George. A fellow' struck at you from be-
hind: as he raised his cuirass in the a<5t, I
stabbed him with my dagger. Dowm he came;
and so I rid you of an enemy, and helped my-
self to a horse.
Goetz. There we held together till Francis
here came to our help; and thereupon we
! mowed our way out.
42


ARTIST: A. WAGNER.
GOTZ VON BERLICHINGEN. ACT III.
GOTZ VON BERLICHINGEN ANI) SELBITZ


Lerse. The hounds whom I led were to
have mowed their way in, till our scythes met, 1
but they fled like Imperialists. j
Goetz. Friend and foe all fled, except ;
this little band who protected my rear. I had
enough to do with the fellows in front, but the
fall of their captain dismayed them; they
wavered, and fled. I have their banner, and
a few prisoners.
Selbitz. The captain has escaped you ?
Goetz. They rescued him in the scuffle.
Come, lads, come, Selbitz.Make a litter of 1
lances and boughs: thou canst not mount a |
horse, come to my castle. They are scattered,
but we are very few; and I know not what ;
troops they may have in reserve. I will be
your host, my friends. Wine will taste well
after such an action.
[Exeunt, carrying Selbitz.
SCENE XIII. The Camp.
The Captain and Imperialists.
Captain. I could kill you all with my own
hand.What! to turn tail! He had not a
handful of men left. To give way before one
man No one will believe it but those who
wish to make a jest of us. Ride round the
country, you, and you, and you : colleCt our
scattered soldiers, or cut them down wherever
you find them. We must grind these notches
out of our blades, even should we spoil our
swords in the operation. [Exeunt.
SCENE XIV.-Jaxthausen.
Goetz, Lerse and George.
Goetz. We must not lose a moment. My
poor fellows, I dare allow you no rest. Gallop
round and strive to enlist troopers, appoint
them to assemble at Weilern, where they will
be most secure. Should we delay a moment,
they will be before the castle.(Exeunt Lerse
and George.)I must send out a scout. This
begins to grow warm.If we had but brave
foemen to deal with But these fellows are
only formidable through their number. [Exit.
Enter Sickingen and Maria.
Maria. I beseech thee, dear Sickingen, do
not leave my brother His horsemen, your
own, and those of Selbitz, all are scattered;
he is alone. Selbitz has been carried home
to his castle wounded. I fear the worst.
Sickingen. Be comforted, I will not leave
him.
Enter Goetz.
Goetz. Come to the chapel; the priest
waits; in a few minutes you shall be united.
Sickingen. Let me remain with you.
Goetz. You must come now to the chapel.
Sickingen. Willingly!and then
Goetz. Then you go your way.
Sickingen. Goetz!
Goetz. Will you not to the chapel?
Sickingen. Come, come! [Exeunt.
SCENE XV.Camp.
Captain and Officers.
Captain. How many are we in all ?
Officer. A hundred and fifty
Captain. Out of four hundred.That is
bad. Set out for Jaxthausen at once, before
he collects his forces and attacks us on the
way.
SCENE XVI.Jaxthausen.
Goetz, Elizabeth, Maria and Sickingen.
Goetz. God bless you, give you happy
days, and keep those for your children which
he denies to you !
Elizabeth. And may they be virtuous as
youthen let come what will.
Sickingen. I thank you.And you, my
Maria As I led you to the altar, so shall you
lead me to happiness.
Maria. Our pilgrimage will be together
towards that distant and promised land.
Goetz. A prosperous journey.
Maria. That was not what I meant.We
do not leave you.
Goetz. You must, sister.
Maria. You are very harsh, brother.
Goetz. And you more affectionate than
prudent.
Enter George.
George. (Aside to Goetz.) I can collect
no troopers. One was inclined to come, but
he changed his mind and refused.
Goetz. (To George.) Tis well, George.
Fortune begins to look coldly on me. I fore-
43


boded it, however. (Aloud.) Sickingen, I
entreat you, depart this very evening. Per-
suade Maria.You are her husbandlet her
feel it.When women come across our under-
takings, our enemies are more secure in the
open field, than they would else be in their
castles.
Enter a Trooper.
Trooper. (Aside to Goetz.) The Im-
perial squadron is in full and rapid march
hither.
Goetz. I have roused them with stripes
of the rod How many are they?
Trooper. About two hundred.They can
scarcely be six miles from us.
Goetz. Have they passed the river yet ?
Trooper. No, my lord.
Goetz. Had I but fifty men, they should
not cross it. Hast thou seen Lerse?
Trooper. No, my lord.
Goetz. Tell all to hold themselves ready.
We must part, dear friends. Weep on, my
gentle Maria; many a moment of happiness
is yet in store for thee. It is better thou
shouldst weep on thy wedding-day than that
present joy should be the forerunner of future
misery.Farewell, Maria!Farewell, brother!
Maria. I cannot leave you, sister. Dear
brother, let us stay. Dost thou value my hus-
band so little as to refuse his help in thy ex-
tremity ?
Goetz. Yesit is gone far with me. Per-
haps my fall is near. You are but beginning
life, and should separate your lot from mine.
I have ordered your horses to be saddled : you
must away instantly.
Maria. Brother brother !
Elizabeth. ( To Sickingen.) Yield to his
wishes. Speak to her.
Sickingen. Dear Maria we must go.
Maria. Thou too? My heart will break !
Goetz. Then stay. In a few hours my
castle will be surrounded.
Maria. ( Weeping bitterly.) Alas alas !
Goetz. We will defend ourselves as long
as we can.
Maria. Mother of God, have mercy upon
us!
Goetz. And at last we must die or sur-
render. Thy tears will then have involved
thy noble husband in the same misfortune with
me.
Maria. Thou torturest me !
Goetz. Remain remain We shall be
taken together Sickingen, thou wilt fall into
the pit with me, out of which I had hoped thou
shouldst have helped me.
Maria. We will away.Sistersister !
Goetz. Place her in safety, and then think
of me.
Sickingen. Never will I repose a night by
her side till I know thou art out of danger.
Goetz. Sister dear sister! [Kisses her.
Sickingen. Away away !
Goetz. Yet one moment! I shall see you
again. Be comforted, we shall meet again.
(Exeunt Sickingen and Maria. ) I urged
her to departyet when she leaves me what
would I not give to detain her Elizabeth, thou
stayest with me.
Elizabeth. Till death! [Exit.
Goetz. Whom God loves, to him may He
give such a wife.
Enter George.
George. They are near! I saw them from
the tower. The sun is rising, and I perceived
their lances glitter. I cared no more for them
than a cat would for a whole army of mice.
Tis true we play the mice at present.
Goetz. Look to the fastenings of the
gates; barricade them with beams and stones.
(Exit George.) Well exercise their pa-
tience, and they may chew away their valor
in biting their nails. (A trumpet from with-
out. Goetz goes to the window.) Aha Here
comes a red-coated rascal to ask me whether I
will be a scoundrel! What says he? (The
voice of the Herald is heard indistinClly, as
from a distance. Goetz mutters to himself.)
A rope for thy throat! ( Voice again.) Of-
fended majesty!Some priest has drawn up
that proclamation. (Voice concludes, and
Goetz answers from the window.) Surrender
surrender at discretion. With whom speak
you? Am I a robber? Tell your captain,
that for the emperor I entertain,-as I have ever
done, all due respe<51; but as .for him, he
may [Shuts the window with violence.
SCENE XVII. The kitchen.
Elizabeth preparing food. Enter Goetz.
Goetz. You have hard work, my poor
wife!
Elizabeth. Would it might last! But you
can hardly hold out long.
Goetz. We have not had time to provide
ourselves.
44


Elizabeth. And so many people as you
have been wont to entertain. The wine is
well-nigh finished.
Goetz. If we can but hold out a certain
time, they must propose a capitulation. We
are doing them some damage, I promise you.
They shoot the whole day, and only wound
our walls and break our windows. Lerse is
a gallant fellow. He slips about with his
Enter Lerse with a bullet-mould. Servants
with coals.
Lerse. Set them down, and then go and
see for lead about the house; meanwhile I will
make shift witli this. ( Goes to the window, and
takes out the leaden frames.) Everything must
be turned to account. So it is in this world
no one knows what a thing may come to : the
glazier who made these frames little thought
gun: if a rogue comes too nighPop! there
he lies ! [Eiring.
Enter Trooper.
Trooper. We want live coals, gracious
lady!
Goetz. For what ?
Trooper. Our bullets are spent; we must
cast some new ones.
Goetz. How goes it with the powder?
Trooper. There is as yet no want: we
save our fire.
[.Firing at intervals. Exeunt Goetz and
Elizabeth.
that the lead here was to give one of his grand-
sons his last headache; and the father that be-
got me little knew whether the fowls of heaven
or the worms of the earth would pick my bones.
Enter George with a leaden spout.
George. Heres lead for thee! If you hit
with only half of it, not one will return to tell
his majesty, Thy servants have sped ill!
Lerse. ( Cutting it down.) A famous piece !
George. The rain must seek some other
way. Im not afraid of ita brave trooper
and a smart shower will always find their road.
[ They cast balls.
312
45


Gor/z vo/i JicrltcJungen.
Lekse. Hold the ladle. (Goes fo fhe
wl/idoio.) Yonder is a fellow creeping about
with his ride ; he thinks our lire is spent. He
shall have a bullet warm from the pan.
\_Jfe loads his rijle.
Geokge. ( Jyuls down the mould.) Let me
see.
Lekse. (Junes.) Theie lies the game 1
Geokge. He fired at me as I stepped out
self into ward in some town on my knightly
| parole.
1 Lekse. That wont do. Suppose they al-
low us free liberty of departure? for we can
expedt no relief from Sickingen. We will
bury all the valuables where no divining-rod
shall find them ; leave them the bare walls,
and come out with flying colors.
Goetz. They will not permit us.
on the roof to get the lead. He killed a
pigeon that sat near me; it fell into the spout.
I thanked him for my dinner, and went back
with the double booty. [They cast balls.
Lekse. Now let us load, and go through
the castle to earn our dinner.
Enter Goetz.
Goetz. Stay, Lerse, I must speak with
thee. I will not keep thee, George, from the
sport. [Exit George.
Goetz. They offer terms.
Lerse. I will go and hear what they have
to say.
Goetz. They will require me to enter my-
Lerse. It is worth the asking. We will
demand a safe-conduct, and I will sally out.
SCENE XVIII. A Hall.
Goetz, Elizabeth, George and Troopers
at table.
Goetz. Danger unites us, my friends! Be
of good cheer; dont forget the bottle! The
flask is empty. Come, another, dear wife!
(Elizabeth shakes her head.) Is there no
more ?
46


Elizabeth. (Aside.) Only one, which I
have set apart for you.
Goetz. Not so, my love Bring it out;
they need strengthening more than I, for it is
my quarrel.
Elizabeth. Fetch it from the cupboard.
Goetz. It is the last, and I feel as if we
need not spare it. It is long since I have
been so merry. (They fill.) To the health
of the emperor!
All. Long live the emperor !
Goetz. Be it our last word when we die !
I love him, for our fate is similar; but I am
happier than he. To please the princes, he
must diredl his imperial squadrons against
mice, while the rats gnaw his possessions.I
know he often wishes himself dead, rather
than to be any longer the soul of such a
crippled body. ( They fill.) It will just go
once more round. And when our blood runs
low, like this flaskwhen we pour out its last
ebbing drop (empties the wine drop by drop
into his goblet)what then shall be our cry?
George. Freedom forever !
Goetz. Freedom forever !
All. Freedom forever!
Goetz. And if that survive us we can die
happy; for our spirits shall see our childrens
children and their emperor happy Did the
servants of princes show the same filial attach-
ment to their masters as you to medid their
masters serve the emperor as I would serve
him
George. Things would be widely different.
Goetz. Not so much so as it would appear.
Have I not known worthy men among the
princes? And can the race be extinct? Men,
happy in their own minds and in their sub-
jects, who could bear a free, noble brother in
their neighborhood without harboring either
fear or envy; whose hearts expanded when
they saw their table surrounded by their free
equals, and who did not think the knights unfit
companions till they had degraded themselves
by courtly homage.
George. Have you known such princes?
Goetz. Ay, truly. As long as I live I
shall recoiled how the Landgrave of Hanau
made a grand hunting-party, and the princes
and free feudatories dined under the open
heaven, and the country-people all thronged
to see them; it was no selfish masquerade in- ;
stituted for his own private pleasure or vanity.
To see the great round-headed peasant lads
and the pretty brown girls, the sturdy hinds,
and the venerable old men, a crowd of happy
faces, all as merry as if they rejoiced in the
splendor of their master, which he shared with
them under Gods free sky !
George. He must have been as good a
master as you.
Goetz. And may we not hope that many
such will rule together some future day, to
whom reverence to the emperor, peace and
friendship with their neighbors, and the love
of their vassals, shall be the best and dearest
family treasure handed down to their childrens
children? Every one will then keq) and im-
prove his own, instead of reckoning nothing
as gain that is not stolen from his neighbors.
George. And should we have no more
forays ?
Goetz. Would to God there were no rest-
less spirits in all Germany!we should still
have enough to do! We would clear the
mountains of wolves, and bring our peaceable
laborious neighbor a dish of game from the
wood, and eat it together. Were that not full
employment, we would join our brethren, and,
like cherubims with flaming swords, defend the
frontiers of the empire against those wolves the
Turks, and those foxes the French, and guard
for our beloved emperor both extremities of
his extensive empire. That would be a life,
George To risk ones head for the safety of
all Germany, f George springs up.) Whither
away ?
George. Alas! I forgot we were be-
siegedbesieged by the very emperor; and
before we can expose our lives in his defence,
we must risk them for our liberty.
Goetz. Be of good cheer.
Enter Terse.
Lerse. Freedom freedom The cowardly
poltroonsthe hesitating, irresolute asses You
are to depart with men, weapons, horses and
armor; provisions you are to leave behind.
Goetz. They will hardly find enough to
exercise their jaws.
Terse. (Aside to Goetz.J Have you
hidden the plate and money?
Goetz. No Wife, go with Lerse; he
has something to tell thee. [Exeunt.
47


Goetz von Berlichingen.
SCENE XIX.The Court of the Castle.
George. (In the stable. Sings.)
N urchin once, as I have heard,
Ha! ha!
Had caught and caged a little bird,
Sa! sa!
Ha! ha!
Sa sa!
He viewed the prize with heart elate,
Ha! ha !
Thrust in his handah, treacherous fate !
, Sa sa !
Ha! ha!
Sa! sa!
Away the titmouse wingd its flight.,
Ha ha!
And laughd to scorn the silly wight,
Sa! sa!
Ha! ha!
Sa! sa!
Enter Goetz.
Goetz. How goes it ?
George. (Brings out his horse.) All
saddled !
Goetz. Thou art quick.
George. As the bird escaped from the
cage.
Enter all the besieged.
Goetz. Have you all your rifles? Not
yet! Go, take the best from the armory, tis
all one ; well ride on in advance.
George. (Sings.)
Ha! ha!
Sa! sa!
Ha! ha!
SCENE XX. The Armory.
Two Troopers choosing guns.
First Trooper. Ill have this one.
Second Trooper. And I thisbut yon-
ders a better.
First Trooper. Never mindmake haste.
[ Tunmlt and firing without.
Second Trooper. Hark!
First Trooper. (Springs to the window.)
: Good heavens, they are murdering our master!
, He is unhorsed George is down !
; Second Trooper. How shall we get off?
: Over the wall by the walnut tree, and into the
field. \_Exit.
First Trooper. Lerse keeps his ground;
I will to him. If they die, I will ;aot survive
them. [Exit.
48


Goetz. (Solus.)
Goetz. I am like the evil spirit whom the
capuchin conjured into a sack. I fret and
labor but all in vain. The perjured villains !
(Enter Elizabeth.,) What news, Elizabeth,
of my dear, my trusty followers ?
Elizabeth. Nothing certain: some are
slain, some are prisoners; no one could or
would tell me further particulars.
Goetz. Is this the reward of fidelity, of
filial obedience?That it may be well with
thee, and that thy days may be long in the
land!
Elizabeth. Dear husband, murmur not
against our Heavenly Father. They have their
reward. It was born with thema noble and
generous heart. Even in the dungeon they
are free. Pay attention to the imperial com-
missioners; their heavy gold chains become
them
313
49


Gof.tz. As a necklace becomes a sow I
should like to see George and Lerse in fetters!
Elizabeth. It were a sight to make angels
weep.
Goetz. I would not weepI would clench
my teeth, and gnaw my lip in fury. What!
in" fetters! Had ye but loved me less, dear
lads! I could never look at them enough
What! to break their word pledged in the
name of the emperor!
Elizabeth. Put away these thoughts. Re-
flect ; you must appear before the council
you are in no mood to meet them, and I fear
the worst.
Goetz. What harm can they do me ?
Elizabeth. Here comes the sergeant.
Goetz. What! the ass of justice that car-
ries the sacks to the mill and the dung to the
field ? What now ?
Enter Sergeant.
Sergeant. The lords commissioners are at
the council-house, and require your presence.
Goetz. I come.
Sergeant. I am to escort you.
Goetz. Too much honor.
Elizabeth. Be but cool.
Goetz. Fear nothing. \Exeunt.
SCENE II.The Council-House at Heil-
bronn.
The Imperial Commissioners seated at a
table. The Captain and the Magistrates
of the city attending.
Magistrate. In pursuance of your order
we have colledted the stoutest and most de-
termined of our citizens. They are at hand,
in order, at a nod from you, to seize Berlich-
ingen.
Commissioner. We shall have much pleas-
ure in communicating to his imperial majesty
the zeal with which you have obeyed his illus-
trious commands.Are they artisans?
Magistrate. Smiths, coopers and carpen-
ters, men with hands hardened by labor; and
resolute here. \Points to his breast.
Commissioner. Tis well.
Enter Sergeant.
Sergeant. Goetz von Berlichingen waits
without.
Commissioner. Admit him.
Enter Goetz.
Goetz. God save you, sirs! What would
you with me?
Commissioner. First, that you consider
where you are; and in whose presence.
Goetz. By my faith, I know you right
well, sirs.
Commissioner. You acknowledge alle-
giance.
Goetz. With all my heart.
Commissioner. Be seated.
[.Points to a stool.
Goetz. What, down there? Id rather
stand. That stool smells so of poor sinners,
as indeed does the whole apartment.
Commissioner. Stand, then.
Goetz. To business, if you please.
Commissioner. We shall proceed in due
order.
Goetz. I am glad to hear it. Would you
had always done so.
Commissioner. You know how you fell
into our hands, and are a prisoner at discre-
tion.
Goetz. What will you give me to forget it ?
Commissioner. Could I give you modesty,
I should better your affairs.
Goetz. Better my affairs! could you but
do that ? To repair is more difficult than to
destroy.
Secretary. Shall I put all this on record ?
Commissioner. Only what is to the pur-
pose.
Goetz. As far as Im concerned you may
print every word of it.
Commissioner. You fell into the power of
the emperor whose paternal goodness got the
better of his justice, and, instead of throwing
you into a dungeon, ordered you to repair to
his beloved city of Heilbronn. You gave your
knightly parole to appear, and await the termi-
nation in all humility.
Goetz. Well; I am here, and await it.
Commissioner. And we are here to inti-
mate to you his imperial majestys mercy and
clemency. He is pleased to forgive your re-
bellion, to release you from the ban and all
well-merited punishment; provided you do,
with becoming humility, receive his bounty,
and subscribe to the articles which shall be
read unto you.
Goetz. I am his majestys faithful servant,
as ever. One w'ord ere you proceed. My
peoplewhere are they ? What wall be done
with them ?
5


GOTZ VON BERLICHINGEN. ACT IV.
Tins ATTEMPTliD ARREST OF GOTZ.


Commissioner. That concerns you not.
Goetz. So may the emperor turn his face
from you in the hour of your need. They were
my comrades, and are so now. What have you
done with them?
Commissioner. We are not bound to ac-
count to you.
Goetz. All! I forgot that you are not even
pledged to perform what you have promised,
much less
Commissioner. Our business is to lay the
articles before you. Submit yourself to the
emperor, and you may find a way to petition
for the life and freedom of your comrades.
Goetz. Your paper.
Commissioner. Secretary, read it.
Secretary. (Reads.) I, Goetz of Ber-
lichingen, make public acknowledgment, by
these presents, that I, having lately risen in
rebellion against the emperor and empire
Goetz. Tis false! I am no rebel, I have
committed no offence against the emperor, and
with the empire I have no concern.
Commissioner. Be silent, and hear further.
Goetz. I will hear no further. Let any
one arise and bear witness. Have I ever taken
one step against the emperor, or against the
House of Austria? Has not the whole tenor
of my conduct proved that I feel better than
any one else what all Germany owes to its
head; and especially what the free knights
and feudatories owe to their liege lord the
emperor? I should be a villain could I be
induced to subscribe that paper.
Commissioner. Yet we have stridl orders
to try and persuade you by fair means, or, in
case of your refusal, to throw you into prison.
Goetz. Into prison !Me?
Commissioner. Where you may expect
your fate from the hands of justice, since you
will not take it from those of mercy.
Goetz. To prison You abuse the im-
perial power To prison That was not the j
emperors command. What, ye traitors, to j
dig a pit for me, and hang out your oath, |
your knightly honor as the bait? To promise j
me permission to ward myself on parole, and !
then again to break your treaty ! !
Commissioner. We owe no faith to robbers.
Goetz. Wert thou not the representative
of my sovereign, whom I respedt even in the
vilest counterfeit, thou shouldst swallow that
word, or choke upon it. I was engaged in an
honorable feud. Thou mightest thank God,
and magnify thyself before the world, hadst
thou ever done as gallant a deed as that with J
! which I now stand charged. (The Commis-
sioner makes a sign to the Magistrate of
Hcilbronn, who rings a hell.) Not for the sake
; of paltry gain, not to wrest followers or lands
| from the weak and the defenceless, have I
i sallied forth. To rescue my page and defend
' my own personsee ye any rebellion in that?
The emperor and his magnates, reposing on
! their pillows, would never have felt our need.
I have, God be praised, one hand left, and I
have done well to use it.
Enter a party of Artisans armed with
halberds and swords.
Goetz. What means this?
Commissioner. You will not listen.Seize
him !
Goetz. Let none come near me who is
not a very Hungarian ox. One salutation
from my iron fist shall cure him of headache,
toothache and every other ache under the wide
heaven ! (They rush upon him. He strikes
one down; and snatches a swordfrom another.
\ They stand aloof.) Come on come on I
! should like to become acquainted with the
i bravest among you.
Commissioner. Surrender!
Goetz. With a sword in my hand Know
ye not that it depends but upon myself to
make way through all these hares and gain the
open field ? But I will teach you how a man
should keep his word. Promise me but free
ward, and I will give up my sword, and am
again your prisoner.
Commissioner. How Would you treat
with the emperor, sword in hand?
Goetz. God forbid !only with you and
your worthy fraternity You may go home,
good people; you are only losing your time,
and here there is nothing to be got but bruises.
Commissioner. Seize him What! does
not your love for the emperor supply you with
courage ?
Goetz. No more than the emperor supplies
them with plaster for the wounds their courage
would earn them.
Enter Sergeant hastily.
Officer. The warder has just discovered
from the castle-tower a troop of more than
two hundred horsemen hastening towards the
town. Unperceived by us, they have pressed
forward from behind the hill, and threaten
our walls.
Commissioner. Alas! alas! What can this
mean ?
5i


A Soldier enters.
Soldier. Francis of Sickingen waits at
the drawbridge, and informs you that he has
heard how perfidiously you have broken your
word to his brother-in-law, and how the
Council of Heilbronn have aided and abetted
in the treason. He is now come to insist
upon justice, and if refused it, threatens,
within an hour, to fire the four quarters of
your town, and abandon it to be plundered
by his vassals.
Goetz. My gallant brother '.
Commissioner. Withdraw, Goetz. (Exit
Goetz. ) What is to be done ?
Magistrate. Have compassion upon us
and our town Sickingen is inexorable in
his wrath ; he will keep his word.
Commissioner. Shall we forget what is due
to ourselves and the emperor ?
Captain. If we had but men to enforce
it; but situated as we are, a show of resistance
would only make matters worse. It is better
for us to yield.
Magistrate. Let us apply to Goetz to put
in a good word for us. I feel as though I saw
the town already in flames.
Commissioner. Let Goetz approach.
52


Enter Goetz.
Goetz. What now ?
Commissioner. Thou wilt do well to dis-
suade thy brother-in-law from his rebellious j
interference. Instead of rescuing thee, he will
only plunge thee deeper in destruction, and
become the companion of thy fall!
Goetz. (Sees Elizabeth at the door, and
speaks to her aside.) Go; tell him instantly
to break in and force his way hither, but to
spare the town. As for these rascals, if they
offer any resistance, let him use force. I care
not if I lose my life, provided they are all
knocked on the head at the same time.
SCENE III.A large Hall in the Council-
House, beset by Sickingens Troops.
Enter Sickingen and Goetz.
Goetz. That was help from heaven. How
earnest thou so opportunely and unexpectedly,
brother ?
Sickingen. Without witchcraft. I had
despatched two or three messengers to learn
how it fared with thee; when I heard of the
perjury of these fellows I set out instantly,
and now we have them safe.
Goetz. I ask nothing but knightly ward
upon my parole.
Sickingen. You are too noble. Not even
to avail yourself c f the advantage which the
honest man has over the perjurer They are in '
the wrong, and we will not give them cushions
to sit upon. They have shamefully abused
the imperial authority, and, if I know anything
of the emperor, you might safely insist upon
more favorable terms. You ask too little.
Goetz. I have ever been content with little.
Sickingen. And therefore that little has
always been denied thee. My proposal is,
that they shall release your servants, and per-
mit you all to return to your castle on parole
you can promise not to leave it till the em-
perors pleasure be known. You will be safer
there than here.
Goetz. They will say my property is
escheated to the emperor.
Sickingen. Then we will answer thou
canst dwell there, and keep it for his service
till he restores it to thee again. Let them
wriggle like eels in the net, they shall not
escape us! They may talk of the imperial
dignityof their commission. We will not
mind that. I know the emperor, and have
some influence with him. He has ever wished
to have thee in his service. You will not be
long in your castle without being summoned
to serve him.
Goetz. God grant it, ere I forget the use
of arms !
Sickingen. Valor can never be forgotten,
as it can never be learned. Fear nothing !
When thy affairs are settled, I will repair to
court, where my enterprises begin to ripen.
Good fortune seems to smile on them. I want
only to sound the emperors mind. The towns
of Triers and Pfalz as soon expect that the
sky should fall, as that I shall come down
upon their heads. But I will come like a hail-
storm and if I am successful, thou shalt soon
be brother to an eledtor. I had hoped for thy
assistance in this undertaking.
Goetz. (Looks at his hand.) Oh! that
explains the dream I had the night before I
promised Maria to Weislingen. I thought he
vowed eternal fidelity, and held my iron hand
so fast that it loosened from the arm. Alas I
am at this moment more defenceless than when
it was shot away. Weislingen Weislingen !
Sickingen. Forget the traitor We will
thwart his plans, and undermine his authority,
till shame and remorse shall gnaw him to death.
I see, I see the downfall of our enemies.
Goetzonly half a year more !
Goetz. Thv soul soars high I know not
why, but for .some time past no fair prospects
have dawned upon me. I have been ere now in
sore distressI have been a prisoner before
but never did I experience such a depression.
Sickingen. Fortune gives courage. Come,
let us to the bigwigs. They have had time
enough to deliberate, let us take the trouble
upon ourselves. \Exeunt.
SCENE IV.The Castle of Adelaide,
Augsburg.
Adelaide and Weislingen discovered.
Adelaide. This is detestable.
Weislingen. I have gnashed my teeth.
So good a planso well followed outand
after all to leave him in possession of his
castle That cursed Sickingen !
Adelaide. The council should not have
consented.
Weislingen. They were in the net. What
else could they do? Sickingen threatened
them with fire and sword, the haughty, vin-
314
53


dictive man I hate him His power waxes
like a mountain torrentlet it but gain a few
brooks, and others come pouring to its aid.
Adelaide. Have they no emperor?
Weislingen. My dear wife, he waxes old
and feeble; he is only the shadow of what he
was. When he heard what had been done,
and I and the other counsellors murmured in-
dignantly: Let them alone! said he; I
can spare my old Goetz his little fortress, and
if he remains quiet there, what have you to
say against him? We spoke of the welfare
of the state. Oh, said he, that I had
always had counsellors who would have urged
my restless spirit to consult more the happiness
of individuals?
Adelaide. He has lost the spirit of a
prince !
Weislingen. We inveighed against Sick-
ingen He is my faithful servant, said he;
and if he has not acted by my express order,
he has performed what I wished better than
my plenipotentiaries, and I can ratify what he
has done as well after as before.
Adelaide. Tis enough to drive one mad.
Weislingen. Yet I have not given up all
hope. Goetz is on parole to remain quiet in
his castle. Tis impossible for him to keep
his promise, and we shall soon have some new
cause of complaint.
Adelaide. That is the more likely, as we
may hope that the old emperor will soon leave
the world, and Charles, his gallant successor,
will display a more princely mind.
Weislingen. Charles! He is neither
chosen nor crowned.
Adelaide. Who does not expedl and hope
for that event?
Weislingen. You have a great idea of his
abilities; one might almost think you looked
on him with partial eyes.
Adelaide. You insult me, Weislingen.
For what do you take me?
Weislingen. I do not mean to offend;
but I cannot be silent upon the subjedt.
Charles marked attentions to you disquiet me.
Adelaide. And do I receive them as
Weislingen. You are a woman; and no
woman hates those who pay their court to her.
Adelaide. This from you?
Weislingen. It cuts me to the heartthe
dreadful thoughtAdelaide.
Adelaide. Can I not cure thee of this
folly?
Weislingen. If thou wouldst; thou canst
leave the court.
Adelaide. But upon what pretence ? Art
thou not here ? Must I leave you and all my
friends, to shut myself up with the owls in
your solitary castle? No, Weislingen, that will
never do; be at rest, thou knowest I love thee.
Weislingen. That is my anchor so long
as the cable holds. {Exit.
Adelaide. Ah It is come to this? This
was yet wanting. The projects of my bosom
are too great to brook the interruption.
Charlesthe great, the gallant Charlesthe
future emperorshall he be the only man un-
rewarded by my favor? Think not, Weis-
lingen, to hinder meelseshalt thou to earth;
my way lies over thee !
Enter Francis with a letter.
Francis. Here, gracious lady.
Adelaide. Hadst thou it from Charles
own hand ?
Francis. Yes.
Adelaide. What ails thee ? Thou lookst
so mournful!
Francis. It is your pleasure that I should
pine away, and waste my fairest years in ago-
nizing despair.
Adelaide. (Aside.) I pity him; and how
little would it cost me to make him happy.
(Aloud.) Be of good courage, youth! I
know thy love and fidelity, and will not be
ungrateful.
Francis. (With stifled breath.) If thou
wert capable of ingratitude, I could not sur-
vive it. There boils not a drop of blood in
my veins but what is thine ownI have not a
single feeling but to love and to serve thee!
Adelaide. Dear Francis!
Francis. You flatter me. (Bursts into
tears.) Does my attachment deserve only to
be a stepping stool to anotherto see all your
thoughts fixed upon Charles?
Adelaide. You know not what you wish,
and still less what you say.
Francis. (Stamping with vexation and
rage.) No more will I be your slave, your go-
between !
Adelaide. Francis, you forget yourself.
Francis. To sacrifice my beloved master
and myself
Adelaide. Out of my sight!
Francis. Gracious lady!
Adelaide. Go, betray to thy beloved
master the secret of my soul! Fool that I
was to take thee for what thou art not.
Francis. Dear lady! you know how I love
you.
54


Adelaide. And thou, who wast my friend
so near my heartgo, betray me.
Francis. Rather would I tear my heart
from my breast! Forgive me, gentle lady!
my heart is too full, my senses desert me.
Adelaide. Thou dear, affectionate boy !
(She takes him by both hands, draws him to-
wards her and kisses him. He throws himself
weeping upon her neck.) Leave me !
Francis. (His voice choked by tears.)
Heavens!
Adelaide. Leave me! The walls are
traitors. Leave me! (Breaks from him.)
Be but steady in fidelity and love, and the fair-
est reward is thine. [Exit.
Francis. The fairest reward let me but
live till that momentI could murder my
father, were he an obstacle to my happiness !
[Exit.
SCENE V.Jaxthausen.
Goetz seated at a table with writing materials.
Elizabeth beside him with her work.
Goetz. This idle life does not suit me.
My confinement becomes more irksome every
day; I would I could sleep, or persuade my-
self that quiet is agreeable.
Elizabeth. Continue writing the account
of thy deeds which thou hast commenced.
Give into the hands of thy friends evidence
to put thine enemies to shame; make a noble
posterity acquainted with thy real character.
Goetz. Alas! writing is but busy idleness;
it wearies me. While I am writing what I
have done, I lament the misspent time in
which I might do more.
Elizabeth. (Takes the writing.) Be not
impatient. Thou hast come to thy first im-
prisonment at Heilbronn.
Goetz. That was always an unlucky place
to me.
Elizabeth. (Reads.) There were even
some of the confederates who told me that I
had aCted foolishly in appearing before my
bitterest enemies, who, as I might suspeCt,
would not deal justly with me. And what
didst thou answer ? Write on.
Goetz. I said, Have I not often risked
life and limb for the welfare and property of
others, and shall I not do so for the honor of
my knightly word?
Elizabeth. Thus does fame speak of thee.
Goetz. They shall not rob me of my
honor. They have taken all else from me
propertylibertyeverything.
Elizabeth. 1 happened once to stand in
an inn near the Lords of Miltenberg and Sing-
lingen, who knew me not. Then I was joyful
as at the birth of my first-born; for they ex-
tolled thee to each other, and said,He is the
mirror of knighthood, noble and merciful in
prosperity, dauntless and true in misfortune.
Goetz. Let them show me the man to
whom I have broken my word. Heaven
knows, my ambition has ever been to labor
for my neighbor more than for myself, and to
acquire the fame of a gallant and irreproach-
able knight, rather than principalities or
power; and, God be praised! I have gained
the meed of my labor.
Enter George and Lerse with game.
Goetz. Good luck to my gallant huntsmen !
George. Such have we become from gal-
lant troopers. Boots can easily be cut down
into buskins.
Lerse. The chase is always something
tis a kind of war.
George. Yes; if we were not always
crossed by these imperial gamekeepers. Dont
you recolleCt, my lord, how you prophesied
we should become huntsmen when the world
was turned topsy-turvy? We are become so
now without waiting for that.
Goetz. Tis all the same, we are pushed
out of our sphere.
George. These are wonderful times For
eight days a dreadful comet has been seen
all Germany fears that it portends the death
of the emperor, who is very ill.
Goetz. Very ill! Then our career draws
to a close.
Lerse. And in the neighborhood there are
terrible commotions; the peasants have made
a formidable insurrection.
Goetz. Where ?
Lerse. In the heart of Swabia; they are
plundering, burning and slaying. I fear they
will sack the whole country.
George. It is a horrible warfare! They
have already risen in a hundred places, and
daily increase in number. A hurricane too
has lately torn up the whole forests; and in
the place where the insurrection began, two
fiery swords have been seen in the sky crossing
each other.
Goetz. Then some of my poor friends and
neighbors no doubt suffer innocently.
George. Alas that we are pent up thus!
55


Old Man. Away! away! let us fly from
the murdering dogs.
Woman. Sacred heaven How blood-red
is the sky how blood-red the setting sun !
Another. That must be fire.
A Third. My husband my husband !
OldMan. Away! away! To the wood !
\_Exeunt.
Enter Link and Insurgents.
Link. Whoever opposes you, down with
him The village is ours. Let none of the
booty be injured, none be left behind. Plunder
clean and quickly. We must soon set fire
Enter Metzler, coming down the hill.
Metzler. How do things go with you, Link ?
56


ARTIST: A. WAGNER.
GOTZ VON BEREICHINGEN. ACT V.
THE INSURGENTS AN1) GOTZ.


Link. Merrily enough, as you see; you are
just in time for the fun.Whence come you?
Metzler. From Weinsberg. There was
a jubilee.
Link. How so ?
Metzler. We stabbed them all, in such
heaps it was a joy to see it!
Link. All whom ?
Metzler. Dietrich von Weiler led up the
dance. The fool! We were all raging around
the church steeple. He looked out and wished
to treat with us.Baf! A ball through his
head Up we rushed like a tempest, and the
fellow soon made his exit by the window.
Link. Huzza!
Metzler. {To the Peasants.) Ye dogs,
must I find you legs ? How they gape and
loiter, the asses !
Link. Set fire! Let them roast in the
flames forward Push on, ye dolts.
Metzler. Then we brought out Helfen-
stein, Eltershofen, thirteen of the nobility
eighty in all. They were led out on the plain
before Heilbronn. What a shouting and
jubilee among our lads as the long row of
miserable sinners passed by they stared at
each other, and, heaven and earth! we sur-
rounded them before they were aware, and
then despatched them all with our pikes.
Link. Why was I not there?
Metzler. Never in all my life did I see
such fun.
Link. On on Bring all out!
Peasant. Alls clear.
Link. Then fire the village at the four
corners.
Metzler. Twill make a fine bonfire!
Hadst thou but seen how the fellows tumbled
over one another, and croaked like frogs It
warmed my heart like a cup of brandy. One
Rexinger was there, a fellow, with a white
plume and flaxen locks, who, when he went
out hunting, used to drive us before him like
dogs, and with dogs. I had not caught sight
of him all the while, when suddenly his fools
visage looked me full in the face. Push went
the spear between his ribs, and there he lay
stretched on all-fours above his companions.
The fellows lay kicking in a heap like the
hares that used to be driven together at their
grand hunting parties.
Link. It smokes finely already !
Metzler. Yonder it burns Come, let us
with the booty to the main body.
Link. Where do they halt ?
Metzler. Between this and Heilbronn.
They wish to choose a captain whom every
one will respedt, for we are after all only their
equals; they feel this, and turn restive.
Link. Whom do they propose?
. Metzler. Maximilian Stumf, or Goetz
von Berlichingen.
Link. That would be well. Twould give
the thing credit should Goetz accept it. He
has ever been held a worthy independent
knight. Away, away! We march towards
Heilbronn Pass the word.
Metzler. The fire will light us a good
part of the way. Blast thou seen the great
comet ?
Link. Yes. It is a dreadful ghastly sign !
As we march by night we can see it well. It
rises about one oclock.
Metzler. And is visible but for an hour
and a quarter, like an arm brandishing a
sword, and bloody red !
Link. Didst thou mark the three stars at
the swords hilt and point?
Metzler. And the broad haze-colored
stripe illuminated by a thousand streamers
like lances, and between them little swords.
Link. I shuddered with horror. The sky
was pale red streaked with ruddy flames, and
among them grisly figures with shaggy hair
and beards.
Metzler. Did you see them too? And
how they all swam about as though in a sea of
blood, and struggled in confusion, enough to
turn ones brain.
Link. Away away ! [Exeunt.
SCENE II. Open Country. In the distance
two Villages and an Abbey are burning.
Kohl, Wild, Maximilian, Stumf, Insurgents.
Stumf. You cannot ask me to be your
leader; it were bad for you and for me: I am
a vassal of the palsgrave, and how shall I make
war against my liege lord? Besides, you would
always suspedt I did not adt from my heart.
Kohl. We knew well thou wouldst make
some excuse.
Enter George, Lerse aoid Goetz.
Goetz. What would you with me ?
Kohl. You must be our captain.
Goetz. How can I break my knightly
word to the emperor. I am under the ban:
I cannot quit my territory.
Wild. Thats no excuse.
315
57


Goetz. And were I free, and you wanted
to deal with the lords and nobles as you did
at Weinsberg, laying waste the country round
with fire and sword, and should wish me to be
an abettor of your shameless, barbarous doings,
rather than be your captain, you should slay
me like a mad dog !
Kohl. What has been done cannot be
undone.
Stumf. That was just the misfortune, that
they had no leader whom they honored, and
who could bridle their fury. I beseech thee,
Goetz, accept the office The princes will be
grateful; all Germany will thank thee. It will
be for the weal and prosperity of all. The
country and its inhabitants will be preserved.
Goetz. Why dost not thou accept it ?
Stumf. I have given them reasons for my
refusal.
Kohl. We have no time to waste in useless
speeches. Once for all Goetz, be our chief,
or look to thy castle and thy head Take two
hours to consider of it. Guard him !
Goetz. To what purpose? I am as re-
solved now as I shall ever be. Why have ye
risen up in arms? If to recover your rights
and freedom, why do you plunder and lay
waste the land ? Will you abstain from such
evil doings, and a<5i as true men who know
what they want ? Then will I be your chief
for eight days, and help you in your lawful
and orderly demands.
Wild. What has been done was done in
the first heat, and thy interference is not
needed to prevent it for the future.
Kohl. Thou must engage with us at least
for a quarter of a year.
Stumf. Say four weeks, that will satisfy
both parties.
Goetz. Then be it so.
Kohl. Your hand !
Goetz. But you must promise to send the
treaty you have made with me in writing to
all your troops, and to punish severely those
who infringe it.
Wild. Well, it shall be done.
Goetz. Then I bind myself to you for
four weeks.
Stumf. Good fortune to you In whatever
thou doest, spare our noble lord the palsgrave.
Kohl. (Aside.) See that none speak to
him without our knowledge.
Goetz. Terse, go to my wife. Protedl
her ; you shall soon have news of me.
[Exeunt Goetz, Stumf, George, Lerse
and some Peasants.
Enter Metzler, Link and their followers.
Metzler. Who talks of a treaty ? Whats
the use of a treaty ?
Link. It is shameful to make any such
bargain.
Kohl. We know as well what we want as
you; and we may do or let alone what we
please.
Wild. This raging, and burning, and mur-
dering must have an end some day or other;
and by renouncing it just now, we gain a brave
leader.
Metzler. How? An end? Thou traitor!
why are we here but to avenge ourselves on our
enemies, and enrich ourselves at their expense?
Some princes slave has been tampering with
thee.
Kohl. Come, Wild, he is like a brute-
beast. [Exeunt Wild and Kohl.
Metzler. Ay, go your way ; no band will
stick by you. The villains Link, well set
on the others to burn Miltenberg yonder; and
if they begin a quarrel about the treaty, well
cut off the heads of those that made it.
Link. We have still the greater body of
peasants on our side.
[Exeunt with Insurgents.
SCENE III.A Hill and Prospecl of the
Country. In the flat scene a Mill. A
body of Horsemen.
Weislingen comes out of the Mill, followed
by Francis and a Courier.
Weislingen. My horse! Have you an-
nounced it to the other nobles?
Courier. At least seven standards will
meet you in the wood behind Miltenberg.
The peasants are marching in that direction.
Couriers are despatched on all sides; the
entire confederacy will soon be assembled.
Our plan cannot fail; and they say there is
dissension among them.
Weislingen. So much the better. Francis!
Francis. Gracious sir!
Weislingen. Discharge thine errand punc-
tually. I bind it upon thy soul. Give her
the letter. She shall from the court to my
castle instantly. Thou must see her depart,
and bring me notice of it.
Francis. Your commands shall be obeyed.
Weislingen. Tell her she shall go. (To
the Courier.) Lead us by the nearest and
best road.
58


Courier. We must go round; all the
rivers are swollen with the late heavy rains.
SCENE IV.Jaxthausen.
Elizabeth and Lerse.
Lerse. Gracious lady, be comforted !
Elizabeth. Alas Lerse, the tears stood
in his eyes when he took leave of me. It is
dreadful, dreadful!
Lerse. He will return.
Elizabeth. It is not that. When he went
forth to gain honorable victories, never did
grief sit heavy at my heart. I then rejoiced
in the prospedl of his return, which I now
dread.
Lerse. So noble a man.
Elizabeth. Call him not so. There lies
the new misery. The miscreants! they threat- i
ened to murder his family and burn his castle, j
Should he return, gloomy, most gloomy shall :
I see his brow. His enemies will forge scan- :
dalous accusations against him, which he will
be unable to refute.
Lerse. He will and can.
Elizabeth. He has broken his parole
canst thou deny that ?
Lerse. No he was constrained; what
reason is there to condemn him?
Elizabeth. Malice seeks not reasons, but
pretexts. He has become an ally of rebels,
malefactors and murderers: he has become
their chief. Say No to that.
Lerse. Cease to torment yourself and me.
Have they not solemnly sworn to abjure all
such doings as those at Weinsberg? Did I
not myself hear them say, in remorse, that,
had not that been done already, it never
should have been done? Must not the princes
and nobles return him their best thanks for
having undertaken the dangerous office of
leading these unruly people, in order to re-
strain their rage, and to save so many lives
and possessions?
Elizabeth. Thou art an affectionate ad-
vocate. Should they take him prisoner, deal
with him as with a rebel, and bring his gray
hairs Lerse, I should go mad !
Lerse. Send sleep to refresh her body,
dear Father of mankind, if Thou deniest com-
fort to her soul !
Elizabeth. George has promised to bring
news, but he will not be allowed to do so.
They are worse than prisoners. Well I know
they are watched like enemies.The gallant
boy he would not leave his master.
Lerse. The very heart within me bled as
I left him.Had you not needed my help, all
the terrors of grisly death should not have
separated us.
Elizabeth. I know not where Sickingen
is.Could I but send a message to Maria!
Lerse. Write, then. I will take care that
she receives it. \Exit.
SCENE V.A Village.
Enter Goetz and George.
Goetz. To horse, George Quick I see
Miltenberg in flames.Is it thus they keep
the treaty?Ride to them, tell them my pur-
pose. The murderous incendiaries I re-
nounce them.Let them make a thieving
gypsy their captain, not me !Quick, George!
(Exit George. J Would that I were a thou-
sand miles hence, at the bottom of the deep-
est dungeon in Turkey!Could I but come
off with honor from them I have thwarted
them every day, and told them the bitterest
truths, in the hope they might weary of me
and let me go.
Enter an Unknown.
Unknown. God save you, gallant sir!
Goetz. I thank you! What is your er-
rand? Your name?
Unknown. My name does not concern
my business. I come to tell you that your
life is in danger. The insurgent leaders are
weary of hearing from you such harsh lan-
guage, and are resolved to rid themselves of
you. Speak them fair, or endeavor to escape
from them ; and God be with you ! [.Exit.
Goetz. To quit life in this fashion, Goetz,
to end thus? But be it so. My death will
be the clearest proof to the world that I have
had nothing in common with the miscreants.
Enter Insurgents.
First Insurgent. Captain, they are pris-
oners, they are slain !
Goetz. Who ?
Second Insurgent. Those who burned
Miltenberg; a troop of confederate cavalry
suddenly charged upon them from behind the
hill.
Goetz. They have their reward. O George!
George! They have taken him prisoner with
the caitiffs.My George! my George !
59


Link. Up, sir captain, up!There is no
time to losethe enemy is at hand, and in
force.
Goetz. Who burned Miltenberg?
Metzler. If you mean to pick a quarrel,
well soon show you how well end it.
Kohl. Look to your own safety and ours.
Up !
Goetz. (To Metzler. ) Darest thou
threaten me, thou scoundrel? Thinkest thou
to awe me, because thy garments are stained
with the Count of Helfensteins blood?
Metzler. Berlichingen!
Goetz. Thou mayest call me by my name,
and my children will not be ashamed to
hear it.
Metzler. Out upon thee, coward !Princes
slave!
[Goetz strikes him down.The others inter-
pose.
Kohl. Ye are mad !The enemy are break-
ing in on all sides, and you quarrel!
Link. Away! away! [Cries and tumult.
The Insurgents fly across the stage.
Enter Weislingen and Troopers.
Weislingen. Pursue pursue they fly!
Stop neither for darkness nor rain.I hear
Goetz is among them; look that he escape
you not. Our friends say he is sorely wounded.
(Exeunt Troopers.) And when I have caught
theeit will be merciful secretly to execute
the sentence of death in prison. Thus he
perishes from the memory of man, and then,
foolish heart, thou mayest beat more freely.
SCENE VI.The front of a Gypsy-hut in
a wild forest.Night.A fire before the
hut, at which are seated the Mother of
the Gypsies and a girl.
Mother. Throw some fresh straw upon the
thatch, daughter: therell be heavy rain again
to-night.
Enter a Gypsy-Boy.
Boy. A dormouse, mother! and look two
field-mice!
Mother. Ill skin them and roast them for
thee, and thou shalt have a cap of their skins.
Thou bleedest!
Boy. Dormouse bit me.
Mother. Fetch some dead wood, that
the fire may burn bright when thy father
comes: he will be wet through and through.
Another Gypsy-Woman with a child at her
back.
First Woman. Hast thou had good luck ?
Second Woman. Ill enough. The whole
country is in an uproar; ones life is not safe
a moment. Two villages are in a blaze.
First Woman. Is it fire that glares so
yonder? I have been watching it long. One
is so accustomed now to fiery signs in the
heavens.
The Captain of the Gypsies enters with three
of his gang.
Captain. Heard ye the wild huntsman?
First Woman. He is passing over us
now.
Captain. How the hounds give tongue!
Wow! wow!
Second Man. How the whips crack !
Third Man. And the huntsmen cheer
them.Halloho !
Mother. Tis the devils chase.
Captain. We have been fishing in troubled
waters. The peasants rob each other; theres
no harm in our helping them.
Second Woman. What hast thou got,
Wolf?
Wolf. A hare and a capon, a spit, a bundle
of linen, three spoons and a bridle.
Sticks. I have a blanket and a pair of
boots, also a flint and tinder-box.
Mother. All wet as mire; Ill dry them,
give them here ! [Tramping without.
Captain. Hark !A horse Go see who
it is.
Enter Goetz on horseback.
Goetz. I thank thee, God I see fire
they are gypsies.My wounds bleed sorely
my foes are close behind me!Great God,
this is a fearful end !
Captain. Is it in peace thou comest?
Goetz. I crave help from youmy wounds
exhaust meassist me to dismount!
Captain. Help him !A gallant warrior
in look and speech.
Wolf. (Aside.) Tis Goetz von Berlich-
ingen !
Captain. Welcome! welcome!All that
we have is yours.
Goetz. Thanks, thanks!
Captain. Come to my hut!
[Exeunt to the hut.
60


SCENE VII.Inside the Hut.
Captain, Gypsies and Goetz.
Captain. Call our mothertell her to
bring bloochvort and bandages. (Goetz un-
arms himself.) Here is my holiday doublet.
Goetz. God reward you!
[ The Mother binds his wounds.
Captain. I rejoice that you are come.
316
Goetz. Do you know me ?
Captain. Who does not know you, Goetz?
Our lives and hearts blood are yours.
Enter Sticks.
Sticks. Horsemen are coming through the
wood. They are confederates.
Captain. Your pursuers They shall not
harm you. Away, Sticks, call the others: we
61


know the passes better than they. We shall
shoot them ere they are aware of us.
[.Exeunt Captain and Men-Gypsies with
their guns.
Goetz. (Alone.) O Emperor! Emperor!
Robbers protect thy children. (A sharp fir-
ing.) The wild foresters Steady and true !
Enter Women.
Women. Flee! flee The enemy has over-
powered us.
Goetz. Where is my horse?
Women. FI ere!
Goetz. (Girds on his sword and mounts
without his armor.) For the last time shall
you feel my arm. I am not so weak yet.
(Exit. Tumult.
Women. Fie gallops to join our party.
(Firing.
Enter Wole.
Wolf. Away Away All is lost.The
captain is shot!Goetz a prisoner.
[ The Women scream and fly into the wood.
designs on my freedom, and therefore wishes
to get me to his castlethere he will have
power to use me as his hate shall didlate.
Francis. Fie shall not!
Adelaide. Wilt thou prevent him ?
Francis. He shall not!
Adelaide. I foresee the whole misery of
my fate. He will tear me forcibly from his
castle to immure me in a cloister.
Francis. Hell and damnation !
Adelaide. Wilt thou rescue me?
Francis. Anything! Everything!
Adelaide. (Throws herself weeping upon
his neck.) Francis O save me !
Francis. He shall fall. I will plant my
foot upon his neck.
Adelaide. No violence You shall carry
a submissive letter to him announcing obe-
diencethen give him this vial in his wine.
Francis. Give it me! Thou shalt be free !
Adelaide. Free!And then no more shalt
thou need to come to my chamber trembling
and in fear. No more shall I need anxiously
to say, Away, Francis! the morning dawns.
SCENE VIII.Adelaides Bedchamber.
Enter Adelaide with a letter.
Adelaide. He or I! The tyrant to
threaten me We will anticipate him. Who
glides through the ante-chamber? (A lotv
knock at the door.) Who is there ?
Francis. (In a low voice.) Open, gra-
cious lady!
Adelaide. Francis! He well deserves
that I should admit him. (Opens the door.
Francis. (Throws himself on her neck.)
My dear, my gracious lady !
Adelaide. What audacity! If any one
should hear you ?
Francis. Ohallall are asleep.
Adelaide. What wouldst thou ?
Francis. .1 cannot rest. The threats of
my master,your fate,my heart.
Adelaide. He was incensed against me
when you parted from him ?
Francis. He was as I have never seen
him.To my castle, said he, she mustshe
shall go.
Adelaide. And shall we obey?
Francis. I know not, dear lady !
Adelaide. Thou foolish, infatuated boy !
Thou dost not see where this will end. Here
he knows I am in safety. He has long had
SCENE IX.Street before the Prison at
Heilbronn.
Elizabeth and Lerse.
Lerse. Heaven relieve your distress, gra-
cious lady Maria is come.
Elizabeth. God be praised! Lerse, we
have sunk into dreadful misery. My worst
forebodings are realized A prisonerthrown
as an assassin and malefadlor into the deepest
dungeon.
I,erse. I know all.
Elizabeth. Thou knowest nothing. Our
distress is tootoo great! His age, his wounds,
a slow feverand, more than all, the despond-
ency of his mind to think that this should be
his end.
Lerse. Ay, and that Weislingen should be
commissioner!
Elizabeth. Weislingen ?
Lerse. They have adled with unheard-of
severity. Metzler has been burned alive
hundreds of his associates broken upon the
wheel, beheaded, quartered and impaled. All
the country round looks like a slaughter-house,
where human flesh is cheap.
Elizabeth. Weislingen commissioner O
Heaven a ray of. hope Maria shall go to
him: he cannot refuse her. He had ever a
62


compassionate heart, and when he sees her
whom he once loved so much, whom he has
made so miserablewhere is she ?
Lerse. Still at the inn.
Elizabeth. Take me to her. She must
away instantly. I fear the worst. (Exeunt.
SCENE X.An Apartment in Weislingens
Castle.
Weislingen. (Alone.) I am so ill, so
weakall my bones are hollowthis wretched
fever has consumed their very marrow. No
rest, no sleep, by day or night! and when I
slumber, such fearful dreams! Last night
methought I met Goetz in the forest. He
drew his sword, and defied me to combat. I
grasped mine, but my hand failed me. He
darted on me a look of contempt, sheathed
his weapon, and passed on. He is a prisoner;
yet I tremble to think of him. Miserable man !
Thine own voice has condemned him; yet
thou tremblest like a malefadlor at his very
shadow. And shall he die? Goetz! Goetz!
we mortals are not our own masters. Fiends
have empire over us, and shape our adtions
after their own hellish will, to goad us to per-
dition. (Sits down.) Weak! Weak! Why
are my nails so blue ? A cold, clammy, wast-
ing sweat drenches every limb. Everything
swims before my eyes. Could I but sleep!
Alas!
Enter Maria.
Weislingen. Mother of God Leave me
in peaceleave me in peace This spe<5tre
was yet wanting. Maria is dead, and she ap-
pears to the traitor. Leave me, blessed spirit!
I am wretched enough.
Maria. Weislingen, I am no spirit. I am
Maria.
Weislingen. It is her voice !
Maria. I came to beg my brothers life of
thee. He is guiltless, however culpable he
may appear.
Weislingen. Hush ! Mariaangel of
heaven as thou art, thou bringest with thee
the torments of hell! Speak no more !
Maria. And must my brother die ? Weis-
lingen, it is horrible that I should have to tell
thee he is guiltless; that I should be compelled
to come as a suppliant to restrain thee from a
most fearful murder. Thy soul to its inmost
depths is possessed by evil powers. Can this
be Adelbert ?
Weislingen. Thou seestthe consuming
breath of the grave hath swept over memy
strength sinks in deathI die in misery, and
thou comest to drive me to despair. Could
I but tell thee all, thy bitterest hate would
63


melt to sorrow and compassion. O Maria!
Maria!
Maria. Weislingen, my brother is pining
in a dungeonthe anguish of his wounds
his ageOh, hadst thou the heart to bring
his gray hairs Weislingen, we should de-
spair.
Weislingen. Enough!
[Rings a hand-bell.
Enter Francis, in great agitation.
Francis. Gracious sir.
Weislingen. Those papers, Francis. (He
gives them. Weislingen tears open a packet
'and shows Maria a paper.) Here is thy
brothers death-warrant signed !
Maria. God in heaven !
Weislingen. And thus I tear it. He shall
live But can I restore what I have destroyed ?
Weep not so, Francis! Dear youth, my
wretchedness lies deeply at thy heart.
[Francis throws himself at his feet, and
clasps his knees.
Maria. (Apart.) He is illvery ill. The
sight of him rends my heart. I loved him !
And now that I again approach him, I feel
how dearly
Weislingen. Francis, arise and cease to
weepI may recover! While there is life
there is hope.
Francis. You cannot! You must die!
W EISLING EN. Must ?
Francis. (Beside himself.) Poison poi-
son !from your wife! II gave it.
[Rushes out.
Weislingen. Follow him, Mariahe is
desperate. [Exit Maria.
Poison from my wife! Alas! alas! I feel it.
Torture and death!
Maria. (Within.) Help! help!
Weislingen. (Attempts in vain to rise.)
God! I cannot.
Maria. (Re-entering.) He is gone! He
threw himself desperately from a window of
the hall into the river.
Weislingen. It is well with him!Thy
brother is out of danger! The other com-
missioners, especially Seckendorf, are his
friends. They will readily allow him to ward
himself upon his knightly word. Farewell,
Maria! Now go.
Maria. I will stay with theethou poor
forsaken one!
Weislingen. Poor and forsaken indeed !
O God, Thou art a terrible avenger! My
wife!
Maria. Remove from thee that thought.
Turn thy soul to the throne of mercy.
Weislingen. Go, thou gentle spirit! leave
me to my misery! Horrible! Even thy
presence, Maria, even the attendance of my
only comforter, is agony.
Maria. (Aside.) Strengthen me, Hea-
ven My soul droops with his.
Weislingen. Alas! alas! Poison from
my wife My Francis seduced by the wretch !
She waitslistens to every horses hoof for
the messenger who brings her the news of my
death. And thou too, Maria, wherefore art
thou come to awaken every slumbering recoi-
led! ion of my sins? Leave me, leave me that
I may die !
Maria. Let me stay! Thou art alone:
think I am thy nurse. Forget all. May God
forgive thee as freely as I do !
Weislingen. Thou spirit of love! pray
for me pray for me! My heart is seared.
Maria. There is forgiveness for thee.
Thou art exhausted.
Weislingen. I die! I die! and yet I can-
not die. In the fearful contest between life
and death lie the torments of hell.
Maria. Heavenly Father, have compassion
upon him. Grant him but one token of Thy
love, that his heart may be opened to comfort,
and his soul to the hope of eternal life, even
in the agony of death!
SCENE XI.A narrow Vault dimly illumi-
nated. The Judges of the Secret Tri-
bunal discovered seated, all muffled in
black cloaks.
Eldest Judge. Judges of the Secret Tri-
bunal, sworn by the cord and the steel to be
inflexible in justice, to judge in secret, and to
avenge in secret, like the Deity! Are your
hands clean and your hearts pure? Raise
them to heaven and cry,Woe upon evil-
doers !
All. Woe! woe!
Eldest Judge. Crier, begin the diet of
judgment.
Crier. I cry, I cry for accusation against
evil-doers! He whose heart is pure, whose
hands are clean to swear by the cord and the
steel, let him lift up his voice and call upon
the steel and the cord for vengeance! ven-
geance vengeance!
i Accuser. (Comes forward.) My heart is
64


pure from misdeed, and my hands are clean
from innocent blood: God pardon my sins of
thought, and prevent their execution. I raise
my hand on high, and cry for vengeance ven-
geance vengeance!
Eldest Judge. Vengeance upon whom?
Accuser. I call upon the cord and the
steel for vengeance against Adelaide of Weis-
lingen. She has committed adultery and mur-
der. She has poisoned her husband by the
hands of his servantthe servant hath slain
himselfthe husband is dead.
Eldest Judge. Dost thou swear by the
God of truth, that thy accusation is true?
Accuser. I swear!
Eldest Judge. Dost thou invoke upon
thine own head the punishment of murder and
adultery, should thy accusation be found false ?
Accuser. On my head be it.
Eldest Judge. Your voices?
[ They converse a few minutes in whispers.
Accuser. Judges of the Secret Tribunal,
what is your sentence upon Adelaide of Weis-
lingen, accused of murder and adultery?
Eldest Judge. She shall die!she shall
die a bitter and twofold death By the'double
doom of the steel and the cord shall she ex-
piate the double crime. Raise your hands to
heaven and cry, Woe, woe upon her Be she
delivered into the hands of the avenger.
All. Woe woe!
Eldest Judge. Woe! Avenger, come
forth. [.A man advances.
Here, take thou the cord and the steel!
Within eight days shalt thou blot her out from
before the face of heaven: wheresoever thou
findest her, down with her into the dust.
Judges, ye that judge in secret and avenge in
secret like the Deity, keep your hearts from
wickedness, and your hands from innocent
blood ! [ The Scene closes.
SCENE XII. The Court of an Inn.
Lerse and Maria.
Maria. The horses have rested long enough ;
we will away, Lerse.
Lerse. Stay till to-morrow; this is a dread-
ful night.
Maria. Lerse, I cannot rest till I have seen
my brother. Let us away: the weather is
clearing upwe may expect a fair morning.
Lerse. Be it as you will.
SCENE XIII.The Prison at Heilbronn.
Goetz and Elizabeth.
Elizabeth. I entreat thee, dear husband,
speak to me. Thy silence alarms me; thy
spirit consumes thee, pent up within thy breast.
Come, let me see thy wounds; they mend
daily. In this desponding melancholy I know
thee no longer!
Goetz. Seekest thou Goetz? He is long
since gone! Piece by piece have they robbed
me of all I held dear-my hand, my property,
my freedom, my good name! My life! of
what value is it to me? What news of George ?
Is Lerse gone to seek him?
3W


Elizabeth. He is, my love! Be of good
cheer; things may yet take a favorable turn.
Goetz. He whom God hath stricken
lifts himself up no more! I best know the
load I have to bear.To misfortune I am
inured.But now it is not Weislingen alone,
not the peasants alone, not the death of the
emperor, nor my woundsit is the whole
united. My hour is come! I had hoped
it should have been like my life. But His will
be done!
Elizabeth. Wilt thou not eat something ?
Goetz. Nothing, my love! See how the
sun shines yonder!
Elizabeth. It is a fine spring day!
Goetz. My love, wilt thou ask the keepers
permission for me to walk in his little garden
for half an hour, that I may look upon the
clear face of heaven, the pure air, and the
blessed sun?
Elizabeth. I willand he will readily
grant it.
SCENE the Last.The Prison Garden.
Lerse and Maria.
Maria. Go in, and see how it stands with
them. [Exit Lerse.
Enter Elizabeth and Keeper.
Elizabeth. ( To the Keeper. ) God reward
your kindness and attention to my husband!
(Exit Keeper.) Maria, how hast thou sped?
Maria. My brother is safe But my heart
is torn asunder. Weislingen is dead poisoned
by his wife. My husband is in dangerthe
princes are becoming too powerful for him :
they say he is surrounded and besieged.
Elizabeth. Believe not the rumor; and
let not Goetz hear it.
Maria. How is it with him?
Elizabeth. I feared he would not survive
till thy return: the hand of the Lord is heavy
on him. And George is dead !
Maria. George! The gallant boy!
Elizabeth. When the miscreants were


burning Miltenberg his master sent him to
check their villany. A body of cavalry
charged upon them: had they all behaved as
George, they must all have had as clear a con-
science. Many were killed, and George among
them; he died the death of a warrior.
Maria. Does Goetz know it?
Elizabeth. We conceal it from him. He
questions me ten times a day concerning him,
and sends me as often to see what is become
of him. I fear to give his heart this last wound.
Maria. O God what are the hopes of this
world ?
Enter Goetz, Lerse and Keeper.
Goetz. Almighty God! how lovely it is
beneath Thy heaven How free! The trees
put forth their buds, and all the world awakes
to hope.Farewell, my children! my roots
are cut away, my strength totters to the grave.
Elizabeth. Shall I not send Lerse to the
convent for thy son, that thou mayst once
mo-re see and bless him ?
Goetz. Let him be; he needs not my
blessing, he is holier than I.Upon our wed-
ding-day, Elizabeth, could I have thought I
should die thus!My old father blessed us,
and prayed for a succession of noble and gal-
lant sonsGod, Thou hast not heard him.
I am the last.Lerse, thy countenance cheers
me in the hour of death more than in our
most daring .fights: then, my spirit encouraged
all of you; now, thine supports me.Oh,
that I could but once more see George, and
sun myself in his look! You turn away and
weep. He is dead? George is dead? Then
die, Goetz! Thou hast outlived thyself, out-
lived the noblest of thy servants.How died
he? Alas! they took him among the incen-
diaries, and he has been executed?
Elizabeth. No! he was slain at Milten-
berg while fighting like a lion for his freedom.
Goetz. God be praised He was the kind-
est youth under the sun, and one of the
bravest.Now release my soul. My poor
wife I leave thee in a wicked world. Lerse,
forsake her not! Lock your hearts more care-
fully than your doors. The age of fraud is at
hand, treachery will reign unchecked. The
worthless will gain the ascendency by cun-
ning, and the noble will fall into their net.
Maria, may God restore thy husband to thee!
may he not fall the deeper for having risen so
high! Selbitz is dead, and the good emperor,
and my George give me a draught of
water! Heavenly air! Freedom freedom !
[He dies.
Elizabeth. Freedom is above above
with thee! The world is a prison-house.
Maria. Noble man !
rejected thee!
Lerse. And woe to the future, that shall
misiudsfe thee.
Woe to this age that
67




DRAMATIS PERSON/E.
Iphigenia.
Thoas, King of the Taurians.
Orestes.
Pyeades.
Areas.
70


I


ACT I.
SCENE I.A Grove before the Temple of
Diana.
Iphigenia. Beneath your leafy gloom, ye
waving boughs
Of this old, shady, consecrated grove,
As in the goddess silent sandtuary,
With the same shuddering feeling forth I step,
As when I trod it first, nor ever here
Doth my unquiet spirit feel at home.
Long as a higher will, to which I bow,
Hath kept me here conceald, still, as at first,
I feel myself a stranger. For the sea
Doth sever me, alas from those I love,
And day by day upon the shore I stand,
The land of Hellas seeking with my soul;
But to my sighs, the hollow-sounding waves
Bring, save their own hoarse murmurs, no reply.
Alas for him who friendless and alone,
Remote from parents and from brethren dwells;
From him grief snatches every coming joy
Ere it doth reach his lip. His yearning thoughts
Throng back forever to his fathers halls,
Where first to him the radiant sun unclosed
The gates of heavn; where closer, day by day,
Brothers and sisters, leagued in pastime sweet,
Around each other twind loves tender bonds.
I will not reckon with the gods; yet truly
Deserving of lament is womans lot.
Man rules alike at home and in the field,
Nor is in foreign climes without resource;
Him conquest crowneth, him possession glad-
dens,
And him an honorable death awaits.
How circumscribd is womans destiny !
Obedience to a harsh, imperious lord,
Her duty, and her comfort; sad her fate,
Whom hostile fortune drives to lands remote!
Thus Thoas holds me here, a noble man
Bound with a heavy though a sacred chain.
Oh, how it shames me, goddess, to confess
That with repugnance I perform these rites
For thee, divine protectress! unto whom
I would in freedom dedicate my life.
In thee, Diana, I have always hoped,
And still I hope in thee, who didst infold
Within the holy shelter of thine arm
The outcast daughter of the mighty king.
Daughter of Jove! hast thou from ruind Troy
Led back in triumph to his native land
The mighty man, whom thou didst sore afflict,
His daughters life in sacrifice demanding,
Hast thou for him, the godlike Agamemnon,
Who to thine altar led his darling child,
Preservd his wife, Electra, and his son,
i His dearest treasures?then at length restore
Thy suppliant also to her friends and home,
And save her, as thou once from death didst
save,
So now, from living here, a second death.
SCENE II.
Iphigenia, Areas.
Areas. The king hath sent me hither,
bade me greet
With hail and fair salute, Dianas priestess.
I For new and wondrous conquest, this the day,
7i



Iphigenia in Tauris.

S^p,.;
When to her goddess Tauris renders thanks.
I hasten on before the king and host,
Himself to herald, and its near approach.
Iphigenia. We are prepard to give them
worthy greeting;
Our goddess doth behold with gracious eye
The welcome sacrifice from Thoas hand.
Arkas. Would that I also found the
priestess eye,
Much honord, much reverd one, found thine
eye,
0 consecrated maid, more calm, more bright,
To all a happy omen Still doth grief,
With gloom mysterious, shroud thy inner mind;
Vainly, through many a tedious year we wait
For one confiding utterance from thy breast.
Long as Ive known thee in this holy place,
That look of thine hath ever made me shudder;
And, as with iron bands, thy soul remains
Lockd in the deep recesses of thy breast.
Iphigenia. As doth become the exile and
the orphan.
Arkas. Dost thou then here seem exild
and an orphan?
Iphigenia. Can foreign scenes our father-
land replace?
Arkas. Thy fatherland is foreign now to thee.
Iphigenia. Hence is it that my bleeding
heart neer heals.
In early youth, when first my soul, in love,
Held father, mother, brethren fondly twind,
A group of tender germs, in union sweet,
We sprang in beauty from the parent stem,
And heavenward grew; alas, a foreign curse
Then seized and severd me from those I lovd,
And wrenchd with iron grasp the beauteous
bands.
It vanishd then, the fairest charm of youth,
The simple gladness of lifes early dawn ;
Though savd, I was a shadow of myself,
And lifes fresh joyance blooms in me no more.
Arkas. If thou wilt ever call thyself un-
blessd,
1 must accuse thee of ingratitude.
Iphigenia. Thanks have you ever.
Arkas. Not the honest thanks
Which prompt the heart to offices of love;
The joyous glance, revealing to the host
A grateful spirit, with its lot content.
When thee a deep mysterious destiny
Brought to this sacred fane, long years ago,
To greet thee, as a treasure sent from heaven,
With reverence and affedtion, Thoas came.
Benign and friendly was this shore to thee,
To every stranger else with horror fraught,
For, till thy coming, none eer trod our realm
But fell, according to an ancient rite,
A bloody victim at Dianas shrine.
Iphigenia. Freely to breathe alone is not
to live.
Say, is it life, within this holy fane,
Like a poor ghost around its sepulchre,
To linger out my days? Or call you that
A life of conscious happiness and joy,
When every hour, dreamd listlessly away,
Still leadeth onward to those gloomy days,
Which the sad troop of the departed spend
In self-forgetfulness on Lethes shore?
A useless life is but an early death ;
This womans destiny hath still been mine.
Arkas. I can forgive, though I must needs
deplore,
The noble pride which underrates itself;
It robs thee of the happiness of life.
But hast thou, since thy coming here, done
naught ?
Who hath the monarchs gloomy temper
cheerd ?
Who hath with gentle eloquence annulld,
From year to year, the usage of our sires,
By which, a vidtim at Dianas shrine,
Each stranger perishd, thus from certain death
Sending so oft the rescued captive home ?
Hath not Diana, harboring no revenge
For this suspension of her bloody rites,
In richest measure heard thy gentle prayer?
On joyous pinions oer the advancing host,
Doth not triumphant conquest proudly soar?
And feels not every one a happier lot,
Since Thoas, who so long hath guided us
With wisdom and with valor, swayd by thee,
The joy of mild benignity approves,
Which leads him to relax the rigid claims
Of mute submission ? Call thyself useless!
Thou,
When from thy being oer a thousand hearts
A healing balsam flows? when to a race,
To whom a god consignd thee, thou dost prove
A fountain of perpetual happiness,
And from this dire inhospitable coast,
Dost to the stranger grant a safe return ?
Iphigenia. The little done doth vanish to
the mind,
Which forward sees how much remains to do.
Arkas. Him dost thou praise, who under-
rates his deeds ?
Iphigenia. Who weigheth his own deeds is
justly blamd.
Arkas. He too, real worth too proudly
who condemns,
As who, too vainly, spurious worth oerrateth.
Trust me, and heed the counsel of a man
72


ARTIST : FERD KELLER.
IPHIGENIA IN TAURIS. ACT I, SCENE II.
IPHIGENIA.


With honest zeal devoted to thy service :
When Thoas comes to-day to speak with thee,
Lend to his purposed words a gracious ear.
Iphigenia. Thy well-intentiond counsel
troubles me:
His offer I have ever sought to shun.
Arkas. Thy duty and thy interest calmly
weigh.
Si thence King Thoas lost his son and heir,
Among his followers he trusts but few,
And trusts those few no more as formerly.
With jealous eye he views each nobles son
As the successor of his realm, he dreads
A solitary, helpless ageperchance
Sudden rebellion and untimely death.
A Scythian studies not the rules of speech,
And least of all the king. He who is used
To a6t and to command, knows not the art,
From far, with subtle ta6t, to guide discourse
Through many windings to its destind goal.
Thwart not his purpose by a cold refusal,
By an intended misconception. Meet,
With gracious mien, half-way the royal wish.
Iphigenia. Shall I then speed the doom
that threatens me ?
Arkas. His gracious offer canst thou call a
threat ?
Iphigenia. Tis the most terrible of all to
me.
Arkas. For his affeCtion grant him confi-
dence.
Iphigenia. If he will first redeem my soul
from fear.
Arkas. Why dost thou hide from him thy
origin ?
Iphigenia. A priestess secrecy doth well
become.
Arkas. Naught to a monarch should a
secret be;
And, though he doth not seek to fathom thine,
His noble nature feels, ay, deeply feels,
That thou with care dost hide thyself from him.
Iphigenia. Ill-will and anger harbors he
against me ?
Arkas. Almost it seems so. True, he
speaks not of thee,
But casual words have taught me that the wish
Thee to possess hath firmly seizd his soul;
Oh, leave him not a prey unto himself,
Lest his displeasure, ripning in his breast,
Should work thee woe, so with repentance thou
Too late my faithful counsel shalt recall.
Iphigenia. How doth the monarch pur-
pose what no man
Of noble mind, who loves his honest name,
Whose bosom reverence for the gods restrains,
Would ever think of? Will he force employ
To drag me from the altar to his bed ?
Then will I call the gods, and chiefly thee,
Diana, goddess resolute, to aid me;
Thyself a virgin, wilt a virgin shield,
And to thy priestess gladly render aid.
Arkas. Be tranquil! Passion and youths
fiery blood
Impel not Thoas rashly to commit
A deed so lawless. In his present mood,
I fear from him another harsh resolve,
Which (for his soul is steadfast and unmovd)
He then will execute without delay.
Therefore I pray thee, canst thou grant no
more,
At least be gratefulgive thy confidence.
Iphigenia. Oh, tell me what is further
known to thee.
Arkas. Learn it from him. I see the king
approach;
Him thou dost honor, thine own heart enjoins
To meet him kindly and with confidence.
A man of noble mind may oft be led
By womans gentle word.
Iphigenia. (Alone.) How to observe
His faithful counsel see I not in sooth.
But willingly the duty I perform
Of giving thanks for benefits receivd,
And much I wish that to the king my lips
With truth could utter what would please his
ear.
SCENE III.
Iphigenia, Thoas.
Iphigenia. Her royal gifts the goddess
shower on thee,
Imparting conquest, wealth and high renown,
Dominion, and the welfare of thy house,
With the fulfilment of each pious wish,
That thou, whose sway for multitudes provides,
Thyself mayst be supreme in happiness !
Thoas. Contented were I with my peoples
praise;
My conquests others more than I enjoy.
Oh be he king or subject, hes most blessd,
Whose happiness is centred in his home.
My deep affliction thou didst share with me
What time, in wars encounter, the fell sword
Tore from my side my last, my dearest son ;
So long as fierce revenge possessd my heart,
I did not feel my dwellings dreary void ;
But now, returning home, my rage appeasd,
Their kingdom wasted, and my son avengd,
I find there nothing left to comfort me.
319
73


The glad obedience I was wont to see
Kindling in every eye, is smotherd now
In discontent and gloom; each, pondering,
weighs
The changes which a future day may bring,
And serves the childless king, because he
must.
To-day I come within this sacred fane,
Which I have often enterd to implore
And thank the gods for conquest. In my breast
I bear an old and fondlv-cherishd wish,
To which methinks thou canst not be a stranger;
1 hope, a blessing to myself and realm,
To lead thee to my dwelling as my bride.
Iphigenia. Too great thine offer, king, to
one unknown; j
Abashd the fugitive before thee stands, j
Who on this shore sought only what thou gavest,
Safety and peace.
Tiioas. Thus still to shroud thyself
From me, as from the lowest, in the veil
Of mystery which wrappd thy coming here,
Would in no country be deemd just or right.
Strangers this shore appalld; twas so ordaind,
Alike by law and stern necessity.
From thee alonea kindly-welcomd guest,
Who hast enjoyd each hallowd privilege,
And spent thy days in freedom unrestraind
From thee I hopd that confidence to gain
Which every faithful host may justly claim. |
Iphigenia. If I conceald, O king, my
name, my race,
It was embarrassment, and not mistrust.
For didst thou know who stands before thee
now, !
And what accursed head thine arm protects, 1
Strange horror would possess thy mighty heart; ;
And, far from wishing me to share thy throne, j
Thou, ere the time appointed, from thy realm '
Wouldst banish me; wouldst thrust me forth,
perchance
Before a glad reunion with my friends
And period to my wandrings is ordaind,
To meet that sorrow, which in every clime,
With cold, inhospitable, fearful hand,
Awaits the outcast, exild from his home.
Tiioas. Whateer respecting thee the gods
decree,
Whateer their doom for thee and for thy house, J
Since thou hast dwelt amongst us, and enjoyd |
The privilege the pious stranger claims, j
To me hath faild no blessing sent from heaven;
And to persuade me, that protecting thee
I shield a guilty head, were hard indeed.
Iphigenia. Thy bounty, not the guest,
draws blessings down.
Thoas. The kindness shown the wicked is
not blessd.
End then thy silence, priestess; not unjust
Is he who doth demand it. In my hands
The goddess placed thee; thou hast been to me
As sacred as to her, and her behest
Shall for the future also be my law:
If thou canst hope in safety to return
Back to thy kindred, I renounce my claims:
But is thy homeward path forever closed
Or doth thy race in hopeless exile rove,
Or lie extinguishd by some mighty woe
Then may I claim thee by more laws than one.
Speak openly, thou knowst I keep my word.
Iphigenia. Its ancient bands reluctantly
my tongue
Doth loose, a long-hid secret to divulge;
For once imparted, it resumes no more
'Fhe safe asylum of the inmost heart,
But thenceforth, as the powers above decree,
Doth work its ministry of weal or woe.
Attend I issue from the Titans race.
Thoas. A word momentous calmly hast
thou spoken.
Him namst thou ancestor whom all the world
Knows as a sometime favorite of the gods ?
Is it that Tantalus, whom Jove himself
Drew to his council and his social board ?
On whose experiencd words, with wisdom
fraught,
As on the language of an oracle,
Een gods delighted hung?
Iphigenia. Tis even he;
But the immortal gods with mortal men
Should not, on equal terms, hold intercourse;
For all too feeble is the human race,
Not to grow dizzy on unwonted heights.
Ignoble was he not, and no betrayer;
To be the Thunderers slave, he was too great;
To be his friend and comrade,but a man.
His crime was human, and their doom severe ;
For poets sing, that treachery and pride
Did from Joves table hurl him headlong down
To grovel in the depths of Tartarus.
Alas, and his whole race must bear their hate.
Thoas. Bear they their own guilt, or their
ancestors?
Iphigenia. The Titans mighty breast and
nervous frame
Was his descendants certain heritage;
But round their brow Jove forgd a band of
brass.
Wisdom and patience, prudence and restraint,
He from their gloomy, fearful eye conceald ;
In them each passion grew to savage rage,
And headlong rushd with violence uncheckd.
74


Already Pelops, Tantalus lovd son,
Mighty of will, obtaind his beauteous bride,
Hippodamia, child of (Enomaus,
Through treachery and murder; she ere long,
To glad her consorts heart, bore him two sons,
Thyest and Atreus. They with envy markd
The ever-growing love their father bore
To his first-born, sprung from another union.
Hate leagued the pair, and secretly they
wrought,
In fratricide, the first dread crime. The sire
Hippodamia held as murderess,
With savage rage he claimd from her his son,
And she in terror did destroy herself
Thoas. Thourt silent? Pause not in thy
narrative;
Repent not of thy confidencesay on !
Iphigenia. How blessd is he who his pro-
genitors
With pride remembers, to the listener tells
The story of their greatness, of their deeds,
And, silently rejoicing, sees himself
The latest link of this illustrious chain !
For seldom does the self-same stock produce
The monster and the demigod : a line
Or good or evil ushers in, at last,
The glory or the terror of the world.
After the death of Pelops, his two sons
Ruld oer the city with divided sway.
But such an union could not long endure.
His brothers honor first Thyestes wounds.
In vengeance Atreus drove him from the realm.
Thyestes, planning horrors, long before
Had stealthily procurd his brothers son,
Whom he in secret nurturd as his own.
Revenge and fury in his breast he pourd,
Then to the royal city sent him forth,
That in his uncle he might slay his sire.
The meditated murder was disclosd,
And by the king most cruelly avengd,
Who slaughterd, as he thought, his brothers
son.
Too late he learnd whose dying tortures met
His drunken gaze; and seeking to assuage
The insatiate vengeance that possessd his soul,
He plannd a deed unheard of. He assumd
A friendly tone, seemd reconcild, appeasd,
And lurd his brother, with his children twain,
Back to his kingdom; these he seizd and slew;
Then placd the loathsome and abhorrent food
At his first meal before the unconscious sire.
And when Thyestes had his hunger stilld
With his own flesh, a sadness seizd his soul;
He for his children askd,their steps, their
voice
Fancied he heard already at the door;
And Atreus, grinning with malicious joy,
Threw in the members of the slaughterd boys.
Shuddring, O king, thou dost avert thy face:
So did the sun his radiant visage hide,
And swerve his chariot from the eternal path.
These, monarch, are thy priestess ancestors,
And many a dreadful fate of mortal doom,
And many a deed of the bewilderd brain,
Dark night doth cover with her sable wing,
Or shroud in gloomy twilight.
Thoas. Hidden there
Let them abide. A truce to horror now,
And tell me by what miracle thou sprangest
From race so savage.
Iphigenia. Atreus eldest son
Was Agamemnon ; he, O king, my sire :
But I may say with truth, that, from a child,
In him the model of a perfeCt man
I witnessd ever. Clytemnestra bore
To him, myself, the firstling of their love,
EleCtra then. Peaceful the monarch ruld,
And to the house of Tantalus was given
A long-withheld repose. A son alone
Was wanting to complete my parents bliss;
Scarce was this wish fulfilld, and young
Orestes,
The households darling, with his sisters grew,
When new misfortunes vexd our ancient house.
To you hath come the rumor of the war,
Which, to avenge the fairest womans wrongs,
The force united of the Grecian kings
Round Ilions walls encampd. Whether the
town
Was humbled, and achievd their great re-
venge,
I have not heard. My father led the host.
In Aulis vainly for a favoring gale
They waited; for, enragd against their chief,
Diana stayd their progress, and requird,
Through Chalcas voice, the monarchs eldest
daughter.
They lurd me with my mother to the camp,
They draggd me to the altar, and this head
There to the goddess doomd.She was ap-
peasd ;
She did not wish my blood, and shrouded me
In a protecting cloud ; within this temple
I first awakend from the dream of death;
Yes, I myself am she, Iphigenia,
Grandchild of Atreus, Agamemnons child,
Dianas priestess, I who speak with thee.
Thoas. I yield no higher honor or regard
To the kings daughter than the maid un-
known ;
Once more my first proposal I repeat;
Come follow me, and share what I possess.


Iphigenia in
Ipi-iigenia. How dare I venture such a
step, O king?
Hath not the goddess who protected me
Alone a right to my devoted head ?
Twas she who chose for me this sanctuary,
Had here attachd myself against her will?
I askd a signal, did she wish my stay.
Thoas. The signal is that still thou tarriest
here.
Seek not evasively such vain pretexts.
Where she perchance reserves me for my sire,
By my apparent death enough chastisd,
To be the joy and solace of his age.
Perchance my glad return is near; and how,
If I, unmindful of her purposes,
76
Not many words are needed to refuse,
The no alone is heard by the refusd.
Iphigenia. Mine are not words meant only
to deceive;
I have to thee my inmost heart reveald.


And doth no inward voice suggest to thee,
How I with yearning soul must pine to see
My father, mother and my long-lost home ?
Oh, let thy vessels bear me thither, king?
That in the ancient halls, where sorrow still
In accents low doth fondly breathe my name,
Joy, as in welcome of a new-born child,
May round the columns twine the fairest wreath.
New life thou wouldst to me and mine impart.
Thoas. Then go! Obey the promptings
of thy heart;
And to the voice of reason and good counsel
Close thou thine ear. Be quite the woman;
give
To every wish the rein, that bridleless
May seize on thee, and whirl thee here and
there.
When burns the fire of passion in her breast,
No sacred tie withholds her from the wretch
Who would allure her to forsake for him
A husbands or a fathers guardian arms;
Extindl within her heart its fiery glow;
The golden tongue of eloquence in vain
With words of truth and power assails her ear.
Iphigenia. Remember now, O king, thy
noble words!
My trust and candor wilt thou thus repay ?
Thou seemst, methinks, prepard to hear the
truth.
Thoas. For this unlookd-for answer not
prepard.
Yet twas to be expected ; knew I not
That with a woman I had now to deal ?
Iphigenia. Upbraid not thus, O king, our
feeble sex!
Though not in dignity to match with yours,
The weapons woman wields are not ignoble.
And trust me, Thoas, in thy happiness
I have a deeper insight than thyself.
Thou thinkest, ignorant alike of both,
A closer union would augment our bliss;
Inspird with confidence and honest zeal
Thou strongly urgest me to yield consent;
And here I thank the gods, who give me
strength
To shun a doom unratified by them.
Thoas. Tis not a god, tis thine own
heart that speaks.
Iphigenia. Tis through the heart alone
they speak to us.
Thoas. To hear them have I not an equal
right ?
Iphigenia. The raging tempest drowns the
still small voice.
Thoas. This voice no doubt the priestess
hears alone.
Iphigenia. Before all others should the
prince attend it.
Thoas. Thy sacred office, and ancestral
right
To Joves own table, place thee with the gods
i In closer union than an earth-born savage.
| Iphigenia. Thus must I now the confi-
! dence atone
Thyself didst wring from me !
Thoas. I am a man.
And better tis we end this conference.
Hear then my last resolve. Be priestess still
Of the great goddess who selected thee;
And may she pardon me, that I from her,
Unjustly and with secret self-reproach,
Her ancient sacrifice so long withheld.
From olden time no stranger neard our shore
But fell a vidlim at her sacred shrine.
But thou, with kind affedtion (which at times
Seemd like a gentle daughters tender love,
At times assumd to my enrapturd heart
The modest inclination of a bride),
Didst so enthral me, as with magic bonds,
, That I forgot my duty. Thou didst rock
j My senses in a dream: I did not hear
My peoples murmurs: now they cry aloud,
Ascribing my poor sons untimely death
To this my guilt. No longer for thy sake
Will I oppose the wishes of the crowd,
Who urgently demand the sacrifice.
Iphigenia. For mine own sake I neer de-
sird it from thee.
Who to the gods ascribe a thirst for blood
Do misconceive their nature, and impute
To them their own inhuman dark desires.
Did not Diana snatch me from the priest,
Holding my service dearer than my death ?
Thoas. Tis not for us, on reasons shift-
ing grounds,
Lightly to guide and construe rites divine.
Perform thy duty; Ill accomplish mine.
Two strangers, whom in caverns of the shore
We found conceald, and whose arrival here
Bodes to my realm no good, are in my power.
With them thy goddess may once more resume
Her ancient, pious, long-suspended rites !
I send them here,thy duty not unknown.
[Exit.
SCENE IV.
Iphigenia. (Alone.) Gracious protedlress!
thou hast clouds
To shelter innocence distressd,
And from the arms of iron fate
320
77


Gently to waft her oer the sea,
Oer the wide earths remotest realms,
Whereer it seemeth good to thee.
Wise art thou,thine all-seeing eye
The future and the past surveys;
Thy glance doth oer thy children rest,
Een as thy light, the life of night,
Keeps oer the earth its silent watch.
O Goddess keep my hands from blood !
Blessing it never brings, and peace;
And still in evil hours the form
Of the chance-murderd man appears
To fill the unwilling murderers soul
With horrible and gloomy fears.
For fondly the Immortals view
Mans widely-scatterd, simple race;
And the poor mortals transient life
Gladly prolong, that he may lift
Awhile to their eternal heavens
His sympathetic joyous gaze.
78


ACT II.
SCENE I.
Orestes, Pylades.
Orestes. It is the path of death that now
we tread :
At every step my soul grows more serene.
When I implord Apollo to remove
The grisly band of Furies from my side,
He seemd, with hope-inspiring, godlike words,
To promise aid and safety in the fane
Of his lovd sister, who oer Tauris rules.
Thus the prophetic word fulfils itself,
That with my life shall terminate my woe.
How easy tis for me, whose heart is crushd,
Whose sense is deadend by a hand divine,
Thus to renounce the beauteous light of day !
And must the son of Atreus not entwine
The wreath of conquest round his dying brow
Must I, as my forefathers, as my sire,
Bleed like a vi<5tim,an ignoble death
So be it! Better at the altar here,
Than in a nook obscure, where kindred hands
Have spread assassinations wily net.
Yield me this brief repose, infernal Powers !
Ye who, like loosend hounds, still scent the
blood
Which, trickling from my feet, betrays my path.
Leave me ere long I come to you below.
Nor you, nor I, should view the light of day.
The soft green carpet of the beauteous earth
Is no arena for unhallowd fiends.
Below I seek you, where an equal fate
Binds all in murky, never-ending night.
Thee only, thee, my Pylades, my friend,
The guiltless partner of my crime and curse,
Thee am I loath, before thy time, to take
To yonder cheerless shore Thy life or death
Alone awakens in me hope or fear.
Pylades. Like thee, Orestes, I am not
prepard
Downwards to wander to yon realm of shade.
I purpose still, through the entangled paths,
Which seem as they would lead to blackest
night,
Again to wind our upward way to life.
Of death I think not; I observe and mark
Whether the gods may not perchance present
j Means and fit moment for a joyful flight.
I Dreaded or not, the stroke of death must come;
And though the priestess stood with hand up-
raisd,
Prepard to cut our consecrated locks,
Our safety still should be my only thought;
Uplift thy soul above this weak despair;
Desponding doubts but hasten on our peril.
Apollo pledgd to us his sacred word,
That in his sisters holy fane for thee
Were comfort, aid and glad return prepard.
The words of Heaven are not equivocal,
As in despair the poor oppressd one thinks.
79


Orestes. The mystic web of life my mother
cast
Around my infant head, and so I grew
An image of my sire; and my mute look
Was aye a bitter and a keen reproof
To her and base /Egisthus. Oh, how oft,
When silently within our gloomy hall
Eledtra sat, and musd beside the fire,
Have I with anguishd spirit climbd her knee,
And watchd her bitter tears with sad amaze !
Then would she tell me of our noble sire:
How much I longd to see himbe with him!
Myself at Troy one moment fondly wishd,
My sires return, the next. The day arrivd
Pylades. Oh, of that awful hour let fiends
of hell
Hold nightly converse 1 Of a time more fair
May the remembrance animate our hearts
To fresh heroic deeds. The gods require
On this wide earth the service of the good
To work their pleasure. Still they count on
thee;
For in thy fathers train they sent thee not,
When he to Orcus went unwilling down.
Orestes. Would I had seizd the border
of his robe,
And followd him !
Pylades. They kindly card for me
Who held thee here; for hadst thou ceasd to
live,
I know not what had then become of me;
Since I with thee, and for thy sake alone,
Have from my childhood livd, and wish to
live.
Orestes. Remind me not of those de-
lightsome days,
When me thy home a safe asylum gave;
With fond solicitude thy noble sire
The half-nippd, tender flowret gently reard :
While thou, a friend and playmate always gay,
Like to a light and brilliant butterfly
Around a dusky flower, didst day by day
Around me with new life thy gambols urge,
And breathe thy joyous spirit in my soul,
Until, my cares forgetting, I with thee
Was lurd to snatch the eager joys of )T)uth.
Pylades. My very life began when thee I
lovd.
Orestes. Say, then thy woes began, and
thou speakst truly.
This is the sharpest sorrow of my lot,
That, like a plague-infedted wretch, I bear
Death and destruction hid within my breast;
That, where I tread, een on the healthiest spot,
Ere long the blooming faces round betray
The anguishd features of a lingring death.
Pylades. Were thy breath venom, I had
been the first
To die that death, Orestes. Am I not,
As ever, full of courage and of joy ?
And love and courage are the spirits wings
Wafting to noble actions.
Orestes. Noble actions?
Time was, when fancy painted such before us!
When oft, the game pursuing, on we roamd
Oer hill and valley; hoping that ere long,
Like our great ancestors in heart and hand,
With club and weapon armd, we so might
track
The robber to his den, or monster huge.
And then at twilight, by the boundless sea,
Peaceful we sat, reclind against each other,
The waves came dancing to our very feet,
And all before us lay the wide, wide world;
Then on a sudden one would seize his sword,
And future deeds shone round us like the stars,
Which gemrnd in countless throngs the vault
of night.
Pylades. Endless, my friend, the projects
which the soul
Burns to accomplish. We would every deed
At once perform as grandly as it shows
After long ages, when from land to land
The poets swelling song hath rolld it on.
It sounds so lovely what our fathers did,
When, in the silent evening shade reclind,
We drink it in with musics melting tones;
And what we do is, as their deeds to them,
Toilsome and incomplete!
Thus we pursue what always flies before;
We disregard the path in which we tread,
Scarce see around the footsteps of our sires,
Or heed the trace of their career on earth.
We ever hasten on to chase their shades,
Which, godlike, at a distance far remote,
On golden clouds, the mountain summits
crown.
The man I prize not who esteems himself
Just as the peoples breath may chance to raise
him.
But thou, Orestes, to the gods give thanks,
That they through thee have early done so
much.
Orestes. When they ordain a man to
noble deeds.
To shield from dire calamity his friends,
Extend his empire, or protect its bounds,
Or put to flight its ancient enemies,
Let him be grateful! For to him a god
Imparts the first, the sweetest joy of life.
Me have they doomd to be a slaughterer,
To be an honord mothers murderer,
80


ARTIST : A SCHMITZ.
IPHIGENIA IN TAURIS
ACT II, SCENE I.
ORESTES AN1) I'VI.ADF.S.


And shamefully a deed of shame avenging, '
Me through their own decree they have oer-
whelmd.
Trust me, the race of Tantalus is doomd ;
And I, his last descendant, may not perish,
Or crownd with honor or unstaind by crime.
Pvlades. The gods avenge not on the son
the deeds
Done by the father. Each, or good or bad,
Of his own adlions reaps the due reward.
The parents blessing, not their curse, descends.
Orestes. Methinks their blessing did not
lead us here.
Pylades. It was at least the mighty gods
decree.
Orestes. Then is it their decree which j
doth destroy us. j
Pylades. Perform what they command, '
and wait the event. j
Do thou Apollos sister bear from hence, :
That they at Delphi may united dwell, j
There by a noble-thoughted race reverd ;
Thee, for this deed, the lofty pair will view
With gracious eye, and from the hateful grasp
Of the infernal Powers will rescue thee.
Een now none dares intrude within this grove.
Orestes. So shall I die at least a peaceful
death.
Pylades. Far other are my thoughts, and
not unskilld
Have I the future and the past combind
In quiet meditation. Long, perchance,
Hath ripend in the counsel of the gods
The great event. Diana yearns to leave
The savage coast of these barbarians,
Foul with their sacrifice of human blood.
We were selected for the high emprise ;
To us it is assignd, and strangely thus |
We are conducted to the threshold here.
Orestes. My friend, with wondrous skill
thou linkst thy wish
With the predestind purpose of the gods.
Pylades. Of what avail is prudence, if it
fail
Heedful to mark the purposes of Heaven?
A noble man, who much hath sinnd, some god !
Doth summon to a dangerous enterprise, j
Which to achieve appears impossible. j
The hero conquers, and atoning serves
Mortals and gods, who thenceforth honor him.
Orestes. Am I foredoomd to adtion and
to life,
Would that a god from my distemperd brain
Might chase this dizzy fever, which impels
My restless steps along a slippry path,
Staind with a mothers blood, to direful death;
And pitying, dry the fountain, whence the
blood,
Forever spouting from a mothers wounds,
Eternally defiles me !
Pylades. Wait in peace !
Thou dost increase the evil, and dost take
The office of the Furies on thyself.
Let me contrive,be still! And when at
length
The time for action claims our powers com-
bind,
Then will I summon thee, and on well stride,
With cautious boldness to achieve the event.
Orestes. I hear Ulysses speak.
Pylades. Nay, mock me not!
Each must seledt the hero after whom
To climb the steep and difficult ascent
Of high Olympus. And to me it seems
That him nor stratagem nor art defiles
Who consecrates himself to noble deeds.
Orestes. I most esteem the brave and
upright man.
Pylades. And therefore have I not desird
thy counsel.
One steps already taken. From our guards
Een now I this intelligence have gaind.
A strange and godlike woman.holds in check
The execution of that bloody law:
Incense and prayer and an unsullied heart,
These are the gifts she offers to the gods.
Rumor extols her highly; it is thought
That from the race of Amazon she springs,
And hither fled some great calamity.
Orestes. Her gentle sway, it seems, lost
all its power
When hither came the culprit, whom the curse,
Like murky night, envelops and pursues.
Our doom to seal, the pious thirst for blood
The ancient cruel rite again unchains:
The monarchs savage will decrees our death;
A woman cannot save when he condemns.
Pylades. That tis a woman is a ground
for hope!
A man, the very best, with cruelty
At length may so familiarize his mind,
His character through custom so transform,
That he shall come to make himself a law
Of what at first his very soul abhorrd.
But woman doth retain the stamp of mind
She first assumd. On her we may depend
In good or evil with more certainty.
She comes; leave us alone. I dare not tell
At once our names, nor unreservd confide
Our fortunes to her. Now retire awhile,
And ere she speaks with thee well meet
again.


SCENE II.
Iphigenia, Pvlades.
Iphigenia. Whence art thou? Stranger,
speak To me thy bearing
Stamps thee of Grecian, not of Scythian race.
[She unbinds his chains.
The freedom that I give is dangerous;
The gods avert the doom that threatens you!
Pvlades. Delicious music! dearly wel-
come tones
Of our own language in a foreign land !
With joy my captive eye once more beholds
The azure mountains of my native coast.
Oh, let this joy that I too am a Greek
Convince thee, priestess! How I need thine
aid,
A moment I forget, my spirit rapt
In contemplation of so fair a vision.
If fates dread mandate doth not seal thy lips,
From which of our illustrious races say,
Dost thou thy godlike origin derive ?
Iphigenia. The priestess whom the goddess
hath herself
Selected and ordaind doth speak with thee.
Let that suffice: but tell me, who art thou,
And what unblessd oerruling destiny
Hath hither led thee with thy friend ?
Pvlades. The woe,
Whose hateful presence ever dogs our steps,
I can with ease relate. Oh, would that thou
Couldst with like ease, divine one, shed on us
One ray of cheering hope We are from Crete,
Adrastus sons, and I, the youngest born,
Namd Cephalus ; my eldest brother, he,
Laodamas. Between us stood a youth
Savage and wild, who severd een in sport
The joy and concord of our early youth.
Long as our father led his powers at Troy,
Passive our mothers mandate we obeyd ;
But when, enrichd with booty, he returnd,
And shortly after died, a contest fierce,
Both for the kingdom and their fathers wealth,
His children parted. I the eldest joind ;
He slew our brother; and the Furies hence
For kindred murder dog his restless steps.
But to this savage shore the Delphian god
Hath sent us, cheerd by hope. He bade us wait
Within his sisters consecrated fane
The blessed hand of aid. Captives we are,
And, hither brought, before thee now we stand
Ordaind for sacrifice. My tale is told.
Iphigenia. Fell Troy Dear man, assure
me of its fall.
Pvlades. Prostrate it lies. Oh, unto us
insure
Deliverance. The promisd aid of Heaven
More swiftly bring. Take pity on my brother.
Oh, say to him a kind, a gracious word !
But spare him when thou speakest; earnestly
This I implore : for all too easily
Through joy and sorrow and through memory
Torn and distracted is his inmost being.
A feverish madness oft doth seize on him,
Yielding his spirit, beautiful and free,
A prey to furies.
Iphigenia. Great as is thy woe,
Forget it, I conjure thee, for a while,
Till I am satisfied.
Pvlades. The stately town,
Which ten long years withstood the Grecian
host,
Now lies in ruins, neer to rise again ;
Yet many a heros grave will oft recall
Our sad remembrance to that barbarous shore.
There lie Achilles and his noble friend.
Iphigenia. So are ye godlike forms reducd
to dust!
Pylades. Nor Palamede nor Ajax eer
again
The daylight of their native land beheld.
Iphigenia. He speaks not of my father,
doth not name
Him with the fallen. He may yet survive !
I may behold him Still hope on, fond heart!
Pvlades. Yet happy are the thousands
who receivd
. Their bitter death-blow from a hostile hand !
For terror wild, and end most tragical,
I Some hostile, angry deity prepard,
Instead of triumph, for the home-returning.
Do human voices never reach this shore ?
Far as their sound extends they bear the fame
Of deeds unparalleld. And is the woe
Which fills Mycenes halls with ceaseless sighs
To thee a secret still?And knowst thou not
That Clytemnestra, with HSgisthus aid,
Her royal consort artfully ensnard,
And murderd on the day of his return?
The monarchs house thou honorest! I per-
ceive
Thy breast with tidings vainly doth contend
Fraught with such monstrous and unlookd-for
woe.
Art thou the daughter of a friend ? art born
Within the circuit of Mycenes walls?
Conceal it not, nor call me to account
That here the horrid crime I first announce.
Iphigenia. Proceed, and tell me how the
deed was done.
Pylades. The day of his return, as from
the bath
82


Arose the monarch, tranquil and refreshd,
His robe demanding from his consorts hand;
A tangld garment, complicate with folds,
She oer his shoulders flung and noble head;
And when, as from a net, he vainly strove
To extricate himself, the traitor, base
^Egisthus, smote him, and envelopd thus
Great Agamemnon sought the shades below.
Iphigenia. And what reward receivd the
base accomplice ?
Pylades. A queen and kingdom he pos-
sessd already.
Iphigenia. Base passion prompted then
the deed of shame ?
Pylades. And feelings, cherishd long, of
deep revenge.
Iphigenia. How had the monarch injurd
Clytemnestra ?
Pylades. By such a dreadful deed, that if
on earth
Aught could exculpate murder, it were this.
To Aulis he allurd her, when the fleet
With unpropitious winds the goddess stayd ;
And there, a victim at Dianas shrine,
The monarch, for the welfare of the Greeks,
Her eldest daughter doomed, Iphigenia.
And this, so rumor saith, within her heart
Planted such deep abhorrence that forthwith
She to HSgisthus hath resignd herself,
And round her husband flung the web of death.
Iphigenia. ( Veiling herself.) It is enough l
Thou wilt again behold me.
Pylades. (Alone.) The fortune of this
royal house, it seems,
Doth move her deeply. Whosoeer she be,
She must herself have known the monarch
well;
For our good fortune, from a noble house,
She hath been sold to bondage. Peace, my
heart!
And let us steer our course with prudent zeal
loward the star of hope which gleams upon us.
83


ACT III.
SCENE I.
Iphigenia, Orestes.
Iphigenia. Unhappy man, I only loose
thy bonds
In token of a still severer doom.
The freedom which the sandtuary imparts,
Like the last life-gleam oer the dying face,
But heralds death. I cannot, dare not say
Your doom is hopeless; for, with murderous
hand,
Could I inflidl the fatal blow myself?
And while I here am priestess of Diana,
None, be he who he may, dare touch your
heads.
But the incensd king, should I refuse
Compliance with the rites himself enjoind,
Will choose another virgin from my train
As my successor. Then, alas with naught,
Save ardent wishes, can I succor you.
Much honored countrymen The humblest
slave,
Who had but neard our sacred household
hearth,
Is dearly welcome in a foreign land;
How with proportiond joy and blessing, then,
Shall I receive the man who doth recall
The image of the heroes, whom I learnd
To honor from my parents, and who cheers
My inmost heart with flattring gleams of hope!
Orestes. Does prudent forethought prompt
thee to conceal
Thy name and race? or may I hope to know
Who, like a heavenly vision, meets me thus?
Iphigenia. Yes, thou shalt know me. Now
conclude the tale
Of which thy brother only told me half:
Relate their end, who coming home from Troy,
On their own threshold met a doom severe
And most unlookd for. Young I was in sooth
When first conducted to this foreign shore,
Yet well I recollect the timid glance
Of wonder and amazement which I cast
On those heroic forms. When they went forth
It seemd as though Olympus had sent down
The glorious figures of a bygone world,
To frighten Ilion ; and above them all,
Great Agamemnon towerd pre-eminent!
Oh, tell me! Fell the hero in his home,
Through Clytemnestras and Hsgisthus wiles?
Orestes. He fell!
Iphigenia. Unblessd Mycene! Thus the
sons
Of Tantalus, with barbarous hands, have sown
84


' Fr FeJtf del. published BY georgk UARHiB J. SenncnleiUr scrip.


Curse upon curse; and, as the shaken weed
Scatters around a thousand poison-seeds,
So they assassins ceaseless generate,
Their childrens children ruthless to destroy,
Now tell the remnant of thy brothers tale,
Which horror darkly hid from me before.
How did the last descendant of the race,
The gentle child, to whom the Gods assignd
The office of avenger,how did he
Escape that day of blood? Did equal fate
Around Orestes throw Avernus net ?
Say, was he savd? and is he still alive?
And lives Eledtra, too ?
Orestes. They both survive.
Iphigenia. Golden Apollo, lend thy
choicest beams!
Lay them an offering at the throne of Jove !
For I am poor and dumb.
Orestes. If social bonds
Or ties more close connect thee with this house,
As this thy rapturous joy betrayeth to me,
Oh, then rein in thy heart and hold it fast!
For insupportable the sudden plunge
From happiness to sorrows gloomy depth.
Thou knowest only Agamemnons death.
Iphigenia. And is not this intelligence
enough ?
Orestes. Half of the horror only hast
thou heard.
Iphigenia. What should I fear? Orestes,
Electra live.
Orestes. And fearest thou for Clytem-
nestra naught?
Iphigenia. Her, neither hope nor fear
have power to save.
Orestes. She to the land of hope hath
bid farewell.
Iphigenia. Did her repentant hand shed
her own blood ?
Orestes. Not so; yet her own blood in-
flicted death.
Iphigenia. More plainly speak, nor leave
me in suspense.
Uncertainty around my anxious head
Her dusky, thousand-folded pinion waves.
Orestes. Have then the powers above
seledted me
To be the herald of a dreadful deed,
Which in the drear and soundless realms of
night
I fain would hide forever? Gainst my will
Thy gentle voice constrains me ; it demands,
And shall receive, a tale of direst woe.
Eledtra, on the day when fell her sire,
Her brother from impending doom conceald;
Him Strophius, his fathers relative,
j Receivd with kindest care, and reard him up
With his own son, namd Pylades, who soon
: Around the stranger twind loves fairest bonds.
And as they grew, within their inmost souls
There sprang the burning longing to revenge
The monarchs death. Unlookd for, and
| disguisd,
They reach Mycene, feigning to have brought
The mournful tidings of Orestes death,
Together with his ashes. Them the queen
Gladly receives. Within the house they enter;
Orestes to Electra shows himself:
She fans the fires of vengeance into flame,
Which in the sacred presence of a mother
Had buntd more dimly. Silently she leads
Her brother to the spot where fell their sire;
Where lurid blood-marks, on the oft-washd
floor.
With pallid streaks, anticipate revenge.
With fiery eloquence she picturd forth
Each circumstance of that atrocious deed,
Her own oppressd and miserable life,
'Phe prosperous traitors insolent demeanor,
The perils threatning Agamemnons race
From her who had become their stepmother.
Then in his hand the ancient dagger thrust,
Which often in the house of Tantalus
With savage fury ragd,and by her son
Was Clytemnestra slain.
Iphigenia. Immortal powers!
Whose pure and blessd existence glides away
Mid ever shifting clouds, me have ye kept
So many years secluded from the world,
Retaind me near yourselves, consignd to me
The childlike task to feed the sacred fire,
And taught my spirit, like the hallowed flame,
! With never-clouded brightness to aspire
To your pure mansions,but at length to feel
With keener woe the horror of my house ?
Oh, tell me of the poor unfortunate !
Speak of Orestes!
Orestes. Oh, could I speak to tell thee of
his death !
Forth from the slain ones spouting blood arose
I His mothers ghost;
And to the ancient daughters of the night
Cries,Let him not escape,the matricide !
Pursue the victim, dedicate to you !
They hear, and glare around with hollow eyes,
Like greedy eagles. In their murky dens
They stir themselves, and from the corners
creep
| Their comrades, dire Remorse and pallid Fear;
Before them fumes a mist of Acheron;
Perplexingly around the murderers brow
; The eternal contemplation of the past
322
35


Rolls in its cloudy circles. Once again
The grisly band, commissiond to destroy,
Pollute earths beautiful and heaven-sown
fields,
From which an ancient curse had banishd
them.
Their rapid feet the fugitive pursue3
They only pause to start a wilder fear.
Iphigenia. Unhappy one thy lot resem-
bles his;
Thou feelst what he, poor fugitive, must suffer.
Orestes. What sayst thou ? why presume
my fate like his?
Iphigenia. A brothers murder weighs upon
thy soul 3
Thy younger brother told the mournful tale.
Orestes. I cannot suffer that thy noble soul
Should by a word of falsehood be deceivd.
In cunning rich and practisd in deceit
A web ensnaring let the stranger weave
To snare the strangers feet 3 between us twain
Be truth!
I am Orestes and this guilty head
Is stooping to the tomb, and covets death 3
It will be welcome now in any shape.
Whoeer thou art, for thee and for my friend
I wish deliverance 3I desire it not.
Thou seemst to linger here against thy will 3
Contrive some means of flight, and leave me
here:
My lifeless corpse hurld headlong from the
rock,
My blood shall mingle with the dashing waves,
And bring a curse upon this barbarous shore !
Return together home to lovely Greece,
With joy a new existence to commence.
[Orestes retires.
Iphigenia. At length Fulfilment, fairest
child of Jove,
Thou dost descend upon me from on high !
How vast thine image scarce my straining
eye
Can reach thy hands, which, filld with golden
fruit
And wreaths of blessing, from Olympus height
Shower treasures down. As by his bounteous
gifts
We recognize the monarch (for what seems
To thousands opulence, is naught to him),
So you, ye heavenly Powers, are also known
By bounty long withheld, and wisely plannd.
Ye only know what things are good for us 3
Ye view the futures wide-extended realm,
While from our eye a dim or starry veil
The prospedl shrouds. Calmly ye hear our
prayers,
When we like children sue for greater speed.
Not immature ye pluck heavens golden fruit 3
And woe to him, who with impatient hand,
His date of joy forestalling, gathers death.
Let not this long-awaited happiness,
Which yet my heart hath scarcely realizd,
Like to the shadow of departed friends,
Glide vainly by with triple sorrow fraught!
Orestes. (Returning.) Dost thou for
Pylades and for thyself
Implore the gods, blend not my name with
yours 3
Thou wilt not save the wretch whom thou
wouldst join,
But will participate his curse and woe.
Iphigenia. My destiny is firmly bound to
thine.
Orestes. No, say not so: alone and un-
attended
Let me descend to Hades. Though thou
shouldst
In thine own veil enwrap the guilty one,
Thou couldst not shroud him from his wake-
ful foes 3
And een thy sacred presence, heavenly maid,
But driveth them aside and scares them not.
With brazen impious feet they dare not tread
Within the precindls of this sacred grove:
Yet in the distance, ever and anon,
I hear their horrid laughter, like the howl
Of famishd wolves, beneath the tree wherein
The traveller hides. Without, encampd they
lie,
And should I quit this consecrated grove,
Shaking their serpent locks, they would arise,
And, raising clouds of dust on every side,
Ceaseless pursue their miserable prey.
Iphigenia. Orestes, canst thou hear a
friendly word ?
Orestes. Reserve it for one favored by
the gods.
Iphigenia. To thee they give anew the
light of hope.
Orestes. Through clouds and smoke I see
the feeble gleam
Of the death-stream which lights me down to
hell.
Iphigenia. Hast thou one sister only, thy
Electra ?
Orestes. I knew but one: yet her kind
destiny,
Which seemd to us so terrible, betimes
Removd an elder sister from the woe
Which oer the house of Pelops aye impends.
Oh, cease thy questions, nor thus league thyself
With the Erinnys 3 still they blow away,
86