The Spanish Tragedy

Attributed to Thomas Kyd

Modern spelling. Transcribed by B.F.,
Run on lines (closing open endings) are indicated by ~~~.
Items discussed in the glossary are underlined.


Scene II.1: A room in the palace of Don Cyprian

[Enter Lorenzo and Balthazar.]

LORENZO: My Lord, though Bel-imperia seem thus coy,
Let reason hold you in your wonted joy;
In time the savage Bull sustains the yoke,
In time all haggard Hawks will stoop to lure,
In time small wedges cleave the hardest Oak,
In time the Flint is pierced with softest shower;
And she in time will fall from her disdain,
And rue the sufferance of your friendly pain.

BALTHAZAR: No, she is wilder and more hard withal,
Than beast, or bird, or tree, or stony wall. ... [II.1.10]
But wherefore blot I Bel-imperia's name?
It is my fault, not she that merits blame.
My feature is not to content her sight,
My words are rude and work her no delight.
The lines I send her are but harsh and ill,
Such as do drop from Pan and Marsyas' quill.
My presents are not of sufficient cost,
And being worthless, all my labor's lost.
Yet might she love me for my valiancy:
Aye, but that's slandered by captivity. ... [II.1.20]
Yet might she love me to content her sire:
Aye, but her reason masters his desire.
Yet might she love me as her brother's friend:
Aye, but her hopes aim at some other end.
Yet might she love me to up-rear her state:
Aye, but perhaps she hopes some nobler mate.
Yet might she love me as her beauty's thrall:
Aye, but I fear she cannot love at all.

LORENZO: My Lord, for my sake leave this ecstasy,
And doubt not but we'll find some remedy. ... [II.1.30]
Some cause there is that lets you not be loved:
First that must needs be known, and then removed.
What, if my Sister love some other Knight?

BALTHAZAR: My summer's day will turn to winter's night.

LORENZO: I have already found a stratagem
To sound the bottom of this doubtful theme.
My Lord, for once you shall be ruled by me;
Hinder me not whatere you hear or see.
By force, or fair means will I cast about,
To find the truth of all this question out. ... [II.1.40]
Ho, Pedringano.

PEDRINGANO: [Offstage.] ~~~ Signior.

LORENZO: ~~~~~~ Vien qui presto. [Enter Pedringano.]

PEDRINGANO: Hath your Lordship any service to command me?

LORENZO: Aye, Pedringano, service of import:
And not to spend the time in trifling words,
Thus stands the case: It is not long, thou knowest,
Since I did shield thee from my father's wrath
For thy conveyance in Andrea's love,
For which thou wert adjudged to punishment:
I stood betwixt thee and thy punishment;
And since, thou knowest how I have favored thee. ... [II.1.50]
Now to these favors will I add reward,
Not with fair words but store of golden coin,
And lands and living joined with dignities,
If thou but satisfy my just demand:
Tell truth, and have me for thy lasting friend.

PEDRINGANO: Whatere it be your Lordship shall demand,
My bounden duty bids me tell the truth,
If case it lie in me to tell the truth.

LORENZO: Then, Pedringano, this is my demand,
Whom loves my sister Bel-imperia? ... [II.1.60]
For she reposeth all her trust in thee.
Speak, man, and gain both friendship and reward:
I mean, whom loves she in Andrea's place?

PEDRINGANO: Alas, my Lord, since Don Andrea's death,
I have no credit with her as before,
And therefore know not if she love or no.

LORENZO: Nay, if thou dally, then I am thy foe, [Draws his sword.]
And fear shall force what friendship cannot win:
Thy death shall bury what thy life conceals;
Thou diest for more esteeming her than me. ... [II.1.70]

PEDRINGANO: Oh stay, my Lord.

LORENZO: Yet speak the truth, and I will guerdon thee,
And shield thee from whatever can ensue,
And will conceal whatere proceeds from thee;
But if thou dally once again, thou diest.

PEDRINGANO: If Madam Bel-imperia be in love --

LORENZO: What, villain! Ifs and ands? [Offer to kill him.]

PEDRINGANO: Oh stay, my Lord, she loves Horatio.
[Balthazar starts back.]

LORENZO: What, Don Horatio, our Knight-Marshal's son?

PEDRINGANO: Even him, my Lord. ... [II.1.80]

LORENZO: Now say, but how knowest thou he is her love,
And thou shalt find me kind and liberal:
Stand up, I say, and fearless tell the truth.

PEDRINGANO: She sent him letters, which myself perused,
Full-fraught with lines and arguments of love,
Preferring him before Prince Balthazar.

LORENZO: Swear on this cross that what thou sayst is true,
And that thou wilt conceal what thou hast told.

PEDRINGANO: I swear to both, by him that made us all.

LORENZO: In hope thine oath is true, here's thy reward; ... [II.1.90]
But if I prove thee perjured and unjust,
This very sword whereon thou took'st thine oath,
Shall be the worker of thy tragedy.

PEDRINGANO: What I have said is true, and shall, for me,
Be still concealed from Bel-imperia.
Besides, your Honor's liberality
Deserves my duteous service, even til death.

LORENZO: Let this be all that thou shalt do for me:
Be watchful when and where these lovers meet,
And give me notice in some secret sort. ... [II.1.100

PEDRINGANO: I will, my Lord.

LORENZO: Then shalt thou find that I am liberal:
Thou knowest that I can more advance thy state
Than she; be therefore wise, and fail me not.
Go and attend her, as thy custom is,
Lest absence make her think thou dost amiss. [Exit Pedringano.]
Why so: Tam armis quam ingenio:
Where words prevail not, violence prevails;
But gold doth more than either of them both.
How likes Prince Balthazar this stratagem? ... [II.1.110]

BALTHAZAR: Both well and ill: it makes me glad and sad:
Glad, that I know the hinderer of my love;
Sad, that I fear she hates me whom I love;
Glad, that I know on whom to be revenged;
Sad, that she'll fly me, if I take revenge.
Yet must I take revenge, or die myself,
For love resisted grows impatient.
I think Horatio be my destined plague:
First, in his hand he brandished a sword,
And with that sword he fiercely waged war, ... [II.1.120]
And in that war he gave me dangerous wounds,
And by those wounds he forced me to yield,
And by my yielding I became his slave:
Now, in his mouth he carries pleasing words,
Which pleasing words do harbor sweet conceits,
Which sweet conceits are limed with sly deceits,
Which sly deceits smooth Bel-imperia's ears,
And through her ears dive down into her heart,
And in her heart set him where I should stand.
Thus hath he ta'en my body by his force, ... [II.1.130]
And now by sleight would captivate my soul:
But in his fall I'll tempt the destinies,
And either lose my life, or win my love.

LORENZO: Let's go, my Lord; your staying stays revenge.
Do you but follow me and gain your love:
Her favor must be won by his remove. [Exeunt.]

Scene II.2: Another room in the palace of Don Cyprian
[Enter Horatio and Bel-imperia.]

HORATIO: Now, Madam, since by favor of your love
Our hidden smoke is turned to open flame
And that with looks and words we feed our thoughts
(Two chief contents, where more cannot be had);
Thus in the midst of love's fair blandishments,
Why show you sign of inward languishments?
[Pedringano showeth all to the Prince and Lorenzo,
placing them in secret.

BEL-IMPERIA: My heart (sweet friend) is like a ship at sea:
She wisheth port, where riding all at ease,
She may repair what stormy times have worn;
And leaning on the shore, may sing with joy ... [II.2.10]
That pleasure follows pain, and bliss annoy.
Possession of thy love is th' only port
Wherein my heart, with fears and hopes long tossed,
Each hour doth wish and long to make resort,
There to repair the joys that it hath lost,
And sitting safe, to sing in Cupid's Choir
That sweetest bliss is crown of love's desire.
[Balthazar and Lorenzo above.]

BALTHAZAR: Oh sleep, mine eyes, see not my love profaned;
Be deaf, my ears, hear not my discontent;
Die, heart: another joys what thou deservest. ... [II.2.20]

LORENZO: Watch still, mine eyes, to see this love disjoined;
Hear still, mine ears, to hear them both lament;
Live, heart, to joy at fond Horatio's fall.

BEL-IMPERIA: Why stands Horatio speechless all this while?

HORATIO: The less I speak, the more I meditate.

BEL-IMPERIA: But whereon dost thou chiefly meditate?

HORATIO: On dangers past, and pleasures to ensue.

BALTHAZAR: On pleasures past, and dangers to ensue.

BEL-IMPERIA: What dangers, and what pleasures dost thou mean?

HORATIO: Dangers of war, and pleasures of our love. ... [II.2.30]

LORENZO: Dangers of death, but pleasures none at all.

BEL-IMPERIA: Let dangers go; thy war shall be with me;
But such a war, as breaks no bond of peace.
Speak thou fair words, I'll cross them with fair words;
Send thou sweet looks, I'll meet them with sweet looks;
Write loving lines, I'll answer loving lines;
Give me a kiss, I'll countercheck thy kiss:
Be this our warring peace, or peaceful war.

HORATIO: But, gracious Madam, then appoint the field,
Where trial of this war shall first be made. ... [II.2.40]

BALTHAZAR: Ambitious villain, how his boldness grows.

BEL-IMPERIA: Then be thy father's pleasant bower the field
Where first we vowed a mutual amity;
The Court were dangerous, that place is safe.
Our hour shall be when Vesper 'gins to rise,
That summons home distressful travelers.
There none shall hear us but the harmless birds;
Happily the gentle Nightingale
Shall carol us asleep, ere we be ware,
And singing with the prickle at her breast, ... [II.2.50]
Tell our delight and mirthful dalliance:
Til then each hour will seem a year and more.

HORATIO: But, honey sweet and honorable love,
Return we now into your father's sight:
Dangerous suspicion waits on our delight.

LORENZO: Aye, danger mixed with jealous despite
Shall send thy soul into eternal night. [Exeunt.]

Scene II.3: A room in the royal palace
[Enter King of Spain, Portingale Ambassador, Don Cyprian &c.]

KING: Brother of Castile, to the Prince's love
What says your daughter Bel-imperia?

CYPRIAN: Although she coy it, as becomes her kind,
And yet dissemble that she loves the Prince,
I doubt not, I, but she will stoop in time.
And were she froward, which she will not be,
Yet herein shall she follow my advice,
Which is to love him or forgo my love.

KING: Then, Lord Ambassador of Portingale,
Advise thy King to make this marriage up, ... [II.3.10]
For strengthening of our late-confirmed league;
I know no better means to make us friends.
Her dowry shall be large and liberal:
Besides that she is daughter and half-heir
Unto our brother here, Don Cyprian,
And shall enjoy the moiety of his land,
I'll grace her marriage with an uncle's gift
And this it is: in case the march go forward,
The tribute which you pay shall be released,
And if by Balthazar she have a Son, ... [II.3.20]
He shall enjoy the kingdom after us.

AMBASSADOR: I'll make the motion to my sovereign liege,
And work it if my counsel may prevail.

KING: Do so, my Lord, and if he give consent,
I hope his presence here will honor us,
In celebration of the nuptial day;
And let himself determine of the time.

AMBASSADOR: Will't please your Grace command me ought beside?

KING: Commend me to the king, and so farewell.
But where's Prince Balthazar to take his leave? ... [II.3.30]

AMBASSADOR: That is performed already, my good Lord.

KING: Amongst the rest of what you have in charge,
The Prince's ransom must not be forgot:
That's none of mine, but his that took him prisoner,
And well his forwardness deserves reward.
It was Horatio, our Knight-Marshal's Son.

AMBASSADOR: Between us there's a price already pitched,
And shall be sent with all convenient speed.

KING: Then once again farewell, my Lord.

AMBASSADOR: Farewell, my Lord of Castile, and the rest. [Exit.] ...

KING: Now, brother, you must take some little pains ... [II.3.40]
To win fair Bel-imperia from her will:
Young virgins must be ruled by their friends.
The Prince is amiable and loves her well;
If she neglect him and forgo his love,
She both will wrong her own estate and ours.
Therefore, whiles I do entertain the Prince
With greatest pleasure that our Court affords,
Endeavor you to win your daughter's thought:
If she give back, all this will come to naught. [Exeunt.] ... [II.3.50]

Scene II.4: Hieronimo's garden
[Enter Horatio, Bel-imperia, and Pedringano.]

HORATIO: Now that the night begins with sable wings
To over-cloud the brightness of the Sun,
And that in darkness pleasures may be done,
Come, Bel-imperia, let us to the bower
And there in safety pass a pleasant hour.

BEL-IMPERIA: I follow thee, my love, and will not back,
Although my fainting heart controls my soul.

HORATIO: Why, make you doubt of Pedringano's faith?

BEL-IMPERIA: No, he is as trusty as my second self.
Go, Pedringano, watch without the gate, ... [II.4.10]
And let us know if any make approach.

PEDRINGANO: [Aside.] Instead of watching, I'll deserve more gold
By fetching Don Lorenzo to this match. [Exit Pedringano.]

HORATIO: What means my love?

BEL-IMPERIA: ~~~ I know not what myself,
And yet my heart foretells me some mischance.

HORATIO: Sweet, say not so; fair fortune is our friend,
And heavens have shut up day to pleasure us.
The stars, thou see'st, hold back their twinkling shine,
And Luna hides herself to pleasure us.

BEL-IMPERIA: Thou hast prevailed; I'll conquer my misdoubt, ... [II.4.20]
And in thy love and counsel drown my fear:
I fear no more; love now is all my thoughts.
Why sit we not? for pleasure asketh ease.

HORATIO: The more thou sit'st within these leafy bowers,
The more will Flora deck it with her flowers.

BEL-IMPERIA: Aye, but if Flora spy Horatio here,
Her jealous eye will think I sit too near.

HORATIO: Hark, Madam, how the birds record by night,
For joy that Bel-imperia sits in sight.

BEL-IMPERIA: No, Cupid counterfeits the Nightingale ... [II.4.30]
To frame sweet music to Horatio's tale.

HORATIO: If Cupid sing, then Venus is not far;
Aye, thou art Venus, or some fairer star.

BEL-IMPERIA: If I be Venus, thou must needs be Mars;
And where Mars reigneth, there must needs be wars.

HORATIO: Then thus begin our wars; put forth thy hand,
That it may combat with my ruder hand.

BEL-IMPERIA: Set forth thy foot to try the push of mine.

HORATIO: But first my looks shall combat against thine.

BEL-IMPERIA: Then ward thyself; I dart this kiss at thee. ... [II.4.40]

HORATIO: Thus I retort the dart thou threwest at me.

BEL-IMPERIA: Nay then, to gain the glory of the field,
My twining arms shall yoke and make thee yield.

HORATIO: Nay then, my arms are large and strong withal;
Thus elms by vines are compassed til they fall.

BEL-IMPERIA: Oh let me go; for in my troubled eyes
Now may'st thou read that life in passion dies.

HORATIO: Oh stay a while, and I will die with thee;
So shalt thou yield, and yet have conquered me.

BEL-IMPERIA: Who's there? Pedringano? We are betrayed. ... [II.4.50]
[Enter Lorenzo, Balthazar, Serberine, Pedringano disguised.]

LORENZO: My Lord away with her, take her aside.
Oh sir, forbear: your valor is already tried.
Quickly dispatch, my masters. [They hang him in the Arbor.]

HORATIO: ~~~ What, will you murder me?

LORENZO: Aye, thus, and thus: these are the fruits of love.
[They stab him.]

BEL-IMPERIA: Oh save his live, and let me die for him.
Oh save him, brother; save him, Balthazar:
I loved Horatio, but he loved not me.

BALTHAZAR: But Balthazar loves Bel-imperia.

LORENZO: Although his life were still ambitious-proud, ... [II.4.60]
Yet is he at the highest now he is dead.

BEL-IMPERIA: Murder, murder: help, Hieronimo, help,

LORENZO: Come, stop her mouth; away with her. [Exeunt.]

Scene II.5
[Enter Hieronimo in his shirt, &c.]

HIERONIMO: What outcries pluck me from my naked bed
And chill my throbbing heart with trembling fear,
Which never danger yet could daunt before?
Who calls Hieronimo? speak, here I am,
I did not slumber; therefore twas no dream.
No, no, it was some woman cried for help,
And here within this garden did she cry,
And in this garden must I rescue her.
But stay, what murd'rous spectacle is this?
A man hanged up and all the murderers gone: ... [II.5.10]
And in my bower, to lay the guilt on me.
This place was made for pleasure, not for death. [He cuts him down.]
Those garments that he wears I oft have seen:
Alas, it is Horatio, my sweet son.
Oh no, but he that whilom was my son.
Oh, was it thou that call'dst me from my bed?
Oh speak, if any spark of life remain.
I am thy Father; who hath slain my son?
What savage monster, not of human kind,
Hath here been glutted with thy harmless blood, ... [II.5.20]
And left thy bloody corpse dishonored here,
For me, amidst these dark and deathful shades,
To drown thee with an ocean of my tears?
Oh heavens, why made you night to cover sin?
By day this deed of darkness had not been.
Oh earth, why didst thou not in time devour
The vild profaner of this sacred bower?
Oh poor Horatio, what hadst thou misdone
To leese thy life, ere life was new begun?
Oh wicked butcher, whatsoe'er thou wert, ... [II.5.30]
How could thou strangle virtue and desert?
Aye me most wretched, that have lost my joy
In leesing my Horatio, my sweet boy! [Enter Isabella.]

ISABELLA: My husband's absence makes my heart to throb. --

HIERONIMO: Here, Isabella, help me to lament,
For sighs are stopped and all my tears are spent.

ISABELLA: What world of grief: my son Horatio!
Oh, where's the author of this endless woe?

HIERONIMO: To know the author were some ease of grief, ... [II.5.40]
For in revenge my heart would find relief.

ISABELLA: Then is he gone? and is my son gone too?
Oh gush out tears, fountains and floods of tears;
Blow sighs, and raise an everlasting storm;
For outrage fits our cursed wretchedness.

[1st Passage of Additions from the Quarto of 1602]

Aye me, Hieronimo, sweet husband, speak.

HIERONIMO: He supped with us tonight, frolic and merry.
And said he would go visit Balthazar
At the Duke's Palace: there the Prince doth lodge.
He had no custom to stay out so late:
He may be in his chamber; some go see.
Roderigo, ho. [Enter Pedro and Jaques.]

ISABELLA: Aye me, he raves! Sweet Hieronimo.

HIERONIMO: True, all Spain takes note of it. ... [II.5.10A]
Besides he is so generally beloved;
His Majesty the other day did grace him
With waiting on his cup: these be favors,
Which do assure me he cannot be short-lived.

ISABELLA: Sweet Hieronimo.

HIERONIMO: I wonder how this fellow got his clothes:
Sirrah, sirrah, I'll know the truth of all:
Jaques, run to the Duke of Castile's presently
And bid my son Horatio to come home.
I and his mother have had strange dreams tonight.
Do you hear me, sir?

JAQUES: ~~~ Aye, sir.

HIERONIMO: ~~~~~~ Well, sir, be gone. ... [II.5.20A]
Pedro, come hither; knowest thou who this is?

PEDRO: Too well, sir.

HIERONIMO: ~~~ Too well, who? who is it? Peace, Isabella:
Nay, blush not, man.

PEDRO: ~~~ It is my Lord Horatio.

HIERONIMO: Ha, ha, St. James, but this doth make me laugh,
That there are more deluded than myself.

PEDRO: Deluded?

I would have sworn myself, within this hour,
That this had been my son Horatio:
His garments are so like.
Ha! Are they not great persuasions? ... [II.5.30A]

ISABELLA: Oh, would to God it were not so.

HIERONIMO: Were not, Isabella? dost thou dream it is?
Can thy soft bosom entertain a thought,
That such a black deed of mischief should be done
On one so pure and spotless as our son?
Away, I am ashamed.

ISABELLA: ~~~ Dear Hieronimo,
Cast a more serious eye upon thy grief:
Weak apprehension gives but weak belief.

HIERONIMO: It was a man, sure, that was hanged up here:
A youth, as I remember: I cut him down. ... [II.5.40A]
If it should prove my son now after all.
Say you? say you? Light, lend me a Taper;
Let me look again. Oh God,
Confusion, mischief, torment, death and hell,
Drop all your stings at once in my cold bosom,
That now is stiff with horror; kill me quickly:
Be gracious to me, thou infective night,
And drop this deed of murder down on me;
Gird in my waste of grief with thy large darkness,
And let me not survive, to see the light ... [II.5.50A]
May put me in the mind I had a son.

ISABELLA: Oh sweet Horatio, O my dearest son.

HIERONIMO: How strangely had I lost my way to grief.

[End of additions.]

Sweet, lovely rose, ill-plucked before thy time, ... [II.5.46]
Fair, worthy son, not conquered but betrayed,
I'll kiss thee now, for words with tears are stayed.

ISABELLA: And I'll close up the glasses of his sight,
For once these eyes were only my delight. ... [II.5.50]

HIERONIMO: See'st thou this handkercher besmeared with blood?
It shall not from me, til I take revenge.
See'st thou those wounds that yet are bleeding fresh?
I'll not entomb them, til I have revenged.
Then will I joy amidst my discontent;
Til then my sorrow never shall be spent.

ISABELLA: The heavens are just; murder cannot be hid:
Time is the author both of truth and right,
And time will bring this treachery to light.

HIERONIMO: Meanwhile, good Isabella, cease thy plaints, ... [II.5.60]
Or at the least, dissemble them awhile:
So shall we sooner find the practice out,
And learn by whom all this was brought about.
Come Isabel, now let us take him up [They take him up.]
And bear him in from out this cursed place.
I'll say his dirge: singing fits not this case.
O aliquis mihi quas pulchrum ver educat herbas
         [Hieronimo sets his breast unto his sword.]
Misceat, & nostro detur medicina dolori;
Aut si qui faciunt annorum oblivia, succos
Prebeat; ipse metam magnum quaecungue per orbem ... [II.5.70]
Gramina Sol pulchras effert in luminis oras;
Ipse bibam quicquid meditatur saga veneni,
Quicquid & herbarum vi caeca nenia nectit:
Omnia perpetiar, lethum quoque, dum semel omnis
Noster in extincto moriatur pectore sensus.
Ergo tuos oculos nunquam (mea vita) videbo,
Et tua perpetuus sepelivit lumina somnus?
Emoriar tecum: sic, sic juvat ire sub umbras.
At tamen absistam properato cedere letho,
Ne mortem vindicta tuam tam nulla sequatur. .
.. [II.5.80]
[Here he throws [the sword] from him and bears the body away.]

Scene II.6
[Ghost of Andrea, Revenge.]
ANDREA: Broughtst thou me hither to increase my pain?
I looked that Balthazar should have been slain:
But tis my friend Horatio that is slain,
And they abuse fair Bel-imperia,
On whom I doted more than all the world,
Because she loved me more than all the world.

REVENGE: Thou talkst of harvest, when the corn is green:
The end is crown of every work well done;
The Sickle comes not til the corn be ripe.
Be still, and ere I lead thee from this place; ... [II.6.10]
I'll show thee Balthazar in heavy case.

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