Poetry Explorer- Classic Contemporary Poetry, THE JEW OF MALTA, by CHRISTOPHER MARLOWE

Poetry Explorer

Classic and Contemporary Poetry

THE JEW OF MALTA, by                 Poet's Biography
First Line: Albeit the world thinks machiavel is dead
Last Line: Neither to fate nor fortune, but to heaven. [exeunt.
Subject(s): Jews; Malta; Revenge; Judaism



Machiavel. Albeit the world thinks Machiavel is dead,
Yet was his soul but flown beyond the Alps,
And now the Guise is dead, is come from France,
To view this land, and frolic with his friends.
To some perhaps my name is odious,
But such as love me guard me from their tongues;
And let them know that I am Machiavel,
And weigh not men, and therefore not men's words.
Admired I am of those that hate me most.
Though some speak openly against my books,
Yet they will read me, and thereby attain
To Peter's chair: and when they cast me off,
Are poisoned by my climbing followers.
I count religion but a childish toy,
And hold there is no sin but ignorance.
Birds of the air will tell of murders past!
I am ashamed to hear such fooleries.
Many will talk of title to a crown:
What right had cæsar to the empery?
Might first made kings, and laws were then most sure
When like the Draco's they were writ in blood.
Hence comes it that a strong-built citadel
Commands much more than letters can import;
Which maxim had but Phalaris observed,
He had never bellowed, in a brazen bull,
Of great ones' envy. Of the poor petty wights
Let me be envied and not pitièd!
But whither am I bound? I come not, I,
To read a lecture here in Britain,
But to present the tragedy of a Jew,
Who smiles to see how full his bags are crammed,
Which money was not got without my means.
I crave but this—grace him as he deserves,
And let him not be entertained the worse
Because he favours me. [Exit.


FERNEZE, Governor of Malta.
LODOWICK, his Son.
SELIM CALYMATH, Son of the Grand Seignior.
MARTIN DEL BOSCO, Vice-Admiral of Spain.
MATHIAS, a Gentleman.
BARABAS, a wealthy Jew.
JACOMO, Friars.
Two Merchants.
Three Jews.
Knights, Bassoes, Officers, Guard, Messengers, Slaves, and Carpenters.

BELLAMIRA, a Courtesan.
Two Nuns.

MACHIAVEL, Speaker of the Prologue.




BARABAS discovered in his counting-house, with heaps of gold before him.

BAR. So that of thus much that return was made:
And of the third part of the Persian ships,
There was the venture summed and satisfied.
As for those Sabans, and the men of Uz,
That bought my Spanish oils and wines of Greece,
Here have I purst their paltry silverlings.
Fie; what a trouble 'tis to count this trash
Well fare the Arabians, who so richly pay
The things they traffic for with wedge of gold,
Whereof a man may easily in a day
Tell that which may maintain him all his life.
The needy groom that never fingered groat,
Would make a miracle of thus much coin :
But he whose steel-barred coffers are crammed full,
And all his lifetime hath been tired,
Wearying his fingers' ends with telling it,
Would in his age be loth to labour so,
And for a pound to sweat himself to death.
Give me the merchants of the Indian mines,
That trade in metal of the purest mould ;
The wealthy Moor, that in the eastern rocks
Without control can pick his riches up,
And in his house heap pearls like pebble-stones,
Receive them free, and sell them by the weight ;
Bags of fiery opals, sapphires, amethysts,
Jacinths, hard topaz, grass-green emeralds,
Beauteous rubies, sparkling diamonds,
And seld-seen costly stones of so great price,
As one of them indifferently rated,
And of a carat of this quantity,
May serve in peril of calamity
To ransom great kings from captivity.
This is the ware wherein consists my wealth;
And thus methinks should men of judgment frame
Their means of traffic from the vulgar trade,
And as their wealth increaseth, so inclose
Infinite riches in a little room.
But now how stands the wind?
Into what corner peers my halcyon's bill?
Ha ! to the east? yes: see, how stand the vanes?
East and by south: why then I hope my ships
I sent for Egypt and the bordering isles
Are gotten up by Nilus' winding banks :
Mine argosy from Alexandria,
Loaden with spice and silks, now under sail,
Are smoothly gliding down by Candy shore
To Malta, through our Mediterranean sea.
But who comes here?

Enter a Merchant.

How now?
Merch. Barabas, thy ships are safe,
Riding in Malta-road: and all the merchants
With other merchandise are safe arrived,
And have sent me to know whether yourself
Will come and custom them.
Bar. The ships are safe thou say'st, and richly fraught.
Merch. They are.
Bar. Why then go bid them come ashore,
And bring with them their bills of entry:
I hope our credit in the custom-house
Will serve as well as I were present there.
Go send 'em threescore camels, thirty mules,
And twenty waggons to bring up the ware.
But art thou master in a ship of mine,
And is thy credit not enough for that?
Merch. The very custom barely comes to more
Than many merchants of the town are worth,
And therefore far exceeds my credit, sir.
Bar. Go tell 'em the Jew of Malta sent thee, man :
Tush! who amongst 'em knows not Barabas?
Merch. I go.
Bar. So then, there's somewhat come.
Sirrah, which of my ships art thou master of?
Merch. Of the Speranza, sir.
Bar. And saw'st thou not
Mine argosy at Alexandria?
Thou could'st not come from Egypt, or by Caire,
But at the entry there into the sea,
Where Nilus pays his tribute to the main,
Thou needs must sail by Alexandria.
Merch. I neither saw them, nor inquired of them :
But this we heard some of our seamen say,
They wondered how you durst with so much wealth
Trust such a crazèd vessel, and so far.
Bar. Tush, they are wise ! I know her and her strength.
But go, go thou thy ways, discharge thy ship,
And bid my factor bring his loading in. [Exit Merch.
And yet I wonder at this argosy.

Enter a second Merchant.

2nd Merch. Thine argosy from Alexandria,
Know, Barabas, doth ride in Malta-road,
Laden with riches, and exceeding store
Of Persian silks, of gold, and orient pearl.
Bar. How chance you came not with those other ships
That sailed by Egypt?
2nd Merch. Sir, we saw 'em not.
Bar. Belike they coasted round by Candy shore About their oils, or
other businesses.
But 'twas ill done of you to come so far
Without the aid or conduct of their ships.
2nd Merch. Sir, we were wafted by a Spanish fleet,
That never left us till within a league,
That had the galleys of the Turk in chase.
Bar. O!—they were going up to Sicily:—
Well, go,
And bid the merchants and my men despatch
And come ashore, and see the fraught discharged.
2nd Merch. I go. [Exit.
Bar. Thus trowls our fortune in by land and sea,
And thus are we on every side enriched:
These are the blessings promised to the Jews,
And herein was old Abram's happiness:
What more may Heaven do for earthly man
Than thus to pour out plenty in their laps,
Ripping the bowels of the earth for them,
Making the seas their servants, and the winds
To drive their substance with successful blasts?
Who hateth me but for my happiness?
Or who is honoured now but for his wealth?
Rather had I a Jew be hated thus,
Than pitied in a Christian poverty:
For I can see no fruits in all their faith,
But malice, falsehood, and excessive pride,
Which methinks fits not their profession.
Haply some hapless man hath conscience,
And for his conscience lives in beggary.
They say we are a scattered nation :
I cannot tell, but we have scambled up
More wealth by far than those that brag of faith.
There's Kirriah Jairim, the great Jew of Greece,
Obed in Bairseth, Nones in Portugal,
Myself in Malta, some in Italy,
Many in France, and wealthy every one ;
Ay, wealthier far than any Christian.
I must confess we come not to be kings ;
That's not our fault : alas, our number's few,
And crowns come either by succession,
Or urged by force ; and nothing violent
Oft have I heard tell, can be permanent.
Give us a peaceful rule, make Christians kings,
That thirst so much for principality.
I have no charge, nor many children,
But one sole daughter, whom I hold as dear
As Agamemnon did his Iphigen:
And all I have is hers. But who comes here?

Enter three Jews.

1st Jew. Tush, tell not me; 'twas done of policy.
2nd Jew. Come, therefore, let us go to Barabas,
For he can counsel best in these affairs ;
And here he comes.
Bar. Why, how now, countrymen!
Why flock you thus to me in multitudes?
What accident's betided to the Jews?
1st Jew. A fleet of warlike galleys, Barabas,
Are come from Turkey, and lie in our road :
And they this day sit in the council-house
To entertain them and their embassy.
Bar. Why, let 'em come, so they come not to war ;
Or let 'em war, so we be conquerors—
Nay, let 'em combat, conquer, and kill all!
So they spare me, my daughter, and my wealth. [Aside.
1st. Jew. Were it for confirmation of a league,
They would not come in warlike manner thus.
2nd Jew. I fear their coming will afflict us all.
Bar. Fond men! what dream you of their multitudes.
What need they treat of peace that are in league?
The Turks and those of Malta are in league.
Tut, tut, there is some other matter in't.
1st Jew. Why, Barabas, they come for peace or war.
Bar. Haply for neither, but to pass along
Towards Venice by the Adriatic Sea;
With whom they have attempted many times,
But never could effect their stratagem.
3rd Jew. And very wisely said. It may be so.
2nd Jew. But there's a meeting in the senate house,
And all the Jews in Malta must be there.
Bar. Hum; all the Jews in Malta must be there?
Ay, like enough, why then let every man
Provide him, and be there for fashion-sake.
If anything shall there concern our state,
Assure yourselves I'll look–unto myself. [Aside.
1st Jew. I know you will, Well, brethren, let us go.
2nd Jew. Let's take ou leaves. Farewell, good Barabas.
Bar. Farewell, Zaareth ; farewell, Temainte.
[Exeunt Jews.
And, Barabas, now search this secret out ;
Summon thy senses, call thy wits together :
These silly men mistake the matter clean.
Long to the Turk did Malta contribute;
Which tribute, all in policy I fear,
The Turks have let increase to such a sum
As all the wealth of Malta cannot pay ;
And now by that advantage thinks belike
To seize upon the town: ay, that he seeks.
Howe'er the world go, I'll make sure for one,
And seek in time to intercept the worst,
Warily guarding that which I ha' got.
Ego mihimet sum semper proximus.
Why, let 'em enter, let 'em, take the town. [Exit.


Enter FERNEZE, Governor of Malta, Knights, and, Officers; met
CALYMATH and Bassoes of the Turk.

Fern. Now, Bassoes, what demand you at our hands?
1st Bas. Know, Knights of Malta, that we came from Rhodes,
From Cyprus, Candy, and those other Isles
That lie betwixt the Mediterranean seas.
Fern. What's Cyprus, Candy, and those other Isles
To us, or Malta? What at our hands demand ye?
Cal. The ten years' tribute that remains unpaid.
Fern. Alas! my lord, the sum is over-great,
I hope your highness will consider us.
Cal. I wish, Grave governor, 'twere in my power
To favour you, but 'tis my father's cause,
Wherein I may not, nay, I dare not dally.
Fern. Then give us leave, great Selim Calymath.
[Consults apart with the Knights.
Cal. Stand all aside, and let the Knights determine,
And send to keep our galleys under sail,
For happily we shall not tarry here ;
Now, governor, say, how are you resolved?
Fern. Thus: since your hard conditions are such
That you will needs have ten years' tribute past,
We may have time to make collection
Amongst the inhabitants of Malta for't.
1st Bas. That's more than is in our commission.
Cal. What, Callipine! a little courtesy.
Let's know their time, perhaps it is not long ;
And 'tis more kingly to obtain by peace
Than to enforce conditions by constraint.
What respite ask you, governor?
Fern. But a month.
Cal. We grant a month, but see you keep your promise.
Now launch our galleys back again to sea,
Where we'll attend the respite you have ta'en,
And for the money send our messenger.
Farewell, great governor and brave Knights of Malta.
Fern. And all good fortune wait on Calymath !
[Exeunt CALYMATH and Bassoes.
Go one and call those Jews of Malta hither :
Were they not summoned to appear to-day?
Off. They were, my lord, and here they come.

Enter BARABAS and three Jews.

1st Knight. Have you determined what to say to them ?
Fern. Yes, give me leave:— and, Hebrews, now come near.
From the Emperor of Turkey is arrived
Great Selim Calymath, his highness' son,
To levy of us ten years' tribute past,
Now then, here know that it concerneth us—
Bar. Then, good my lord, to keep your quiet still,
Your lordship shall do well to let them have it.
Fern. Soft, Barabas, there's more 'longs to 't than so.
To what this ten years' tribute will amount,
That we have cast, but cannot compass it
By reason of the wars that robbed our store;
And therefore are we to request your aid.
Bar. Alas, my lord, we are no soldiers:
And what's our aid against so great a prince?
1st Knight. Tut, Jew, we know thou art no soldier ;
Thou art a merchant and a moneyed man,
And 'tis thy money, Barabas, we seek.
Bar. How, my lord! my money?
Fern. Thine and the rest.
For, to be short, amongst you't must be had.
1st Jew. Alas, my lord, the most of us are poor.
Fern. Then let the rich increase your portions.
Bar. Are strangers with your tribute to be taxed?
2nd Knight. Have strangers leave with us to get their wealth?
Then let them with us contribute.
Bar. How! equally ?
Fern. No, Jew, like infidels.
For through our sufferance of your hateful lives,
Who stand accursèd in the sight of Heaven,
These taxes and afflictions are befallen,
And therefore thus we are determinèd.
Read there the articles of our decrees.
Officer (reads) "First, the tribute-money of the Turks
shall all be levied amongst the Jews, and each of them to pay one half of his
Bar. How, half his estate ? I hope you mean not mine. [Aside.
Fern. Read on.
Off. (reading). "Secondly, he that denies to pay shall straight
become a Christian."
Bar. How! a Christian? Hum, what's here to do? [Aside.
Off. (reading). "Lastly, he that denies this shall absolutely
all he has."
The three Jews. O my lord, we will give half.
Bar. O earth-mettled villains, and no Hebrews born!
And will you basely thus submit yourselves
To leave your goods to their arbitrament?
Fern. Why, Barabas, wilt thou be christenèd?
Bar. No, governor, I will be no convertite.
Fern. Then pay thy half.
Bar. Why, know you what you did by this device?
Half of my substance is a city's wealth.
Governor, it was not got so easily;
Nor will I part so slightly therewithal.
Fern. Sir, half is the penalty of our decree,
Either pay that, or we will seize on all.
Bar. Corpo di Dio! stay! you shall have the half ;
Let me be used but as my brethren are.
Fern. No, Jew, thou hast denied the articles,
And now it cannot be recalled.
[Exeunt Officers, on a sign from FERNEZE.
Bar. Will you then steal my goods?
Is theft the ground of your religion?
Fern. No, Jew, we take particularly thine
To save the ruin of a multitude:
And better one want for the common good
Than many perish for a private man:
Yet, Barabas, we will not banish thee,
But here in Malta, where thou gott'st thy wealth,
Live still; and, if thou canst, get more.
Bar. Christians, what or how can I multiply?
Of naught is nothing made.
1st Knight. From naught at first thou cam'st to little wealth,
From little unto more, from more to most:
If your first curse fall heavy on thy head,
And make thee poor and scorned of all the world,
'Tis not our fault, but thy inherent sin.
Bar. What, bring you Scripture to confirm your wrongs?
Preach me not out of my possessions.
Some Jews are wicked, as all Christians are:
But say the tribe that I descended of
Were all in general cast away for sin,
Shall I be tried by their transgression?
The man that dealeth righteously shall live:
And which of you can charge me otherwise?
Fern. Out, wretched Barabas!
Sham'st thou not thus to justify thyself,
As if we knew not thy profession?
If thou rely upon thy righteousness,
Be patient and thy riches will increase.
Excess of wealth is cause of covetousness:
And covetousness, O, 'tis a monstrous sin.
Bar. Ay, but theft is worse: tush! take not from me then,
For that is theft! and if you rob me thus,
I must be forced to steal and compass more.
1st Knight. Grave governor, listen not to his exclaims.
Convert his mansion to a nunnery;
His house will harbour many holy nuns.
Fern. It shall be so.

Re-enter Officers.

Now, officers, have you done?
Off. Ay, my lord, we have seized upon the goods
And wares of Barabas, which being valued,
Amount to more than all the wealth in Malta.
And of the other we have seizèd half.
Fern. Then we'll take order for the residue.
Bar. Well then, my lord, say, are you satisfied?
You have my goods, my money, and my wealth,
My ships, my store, and all that I enjoyed;
And, having all, you can request no more;
Unless your unrelenting flinty hearts
Suppress all pity in your stony breasts,
And now shall move you to bereave my life.
Fern. No, Barabas, to stain our hands with blood
Is far from us and our profession.
Bar. Why, I esteem the injury far less
To take the lives of miserable men
Than be the causers of their misery.
You have my wealth, the labour of my life,
The comfort of mine age, my children's hope,
And therefore ne'er distinguish of the wrong.
Fern. Content thee, Barabas, thou hast naught but right.
Bar. Your extreme right does me exceeding wrong:
But take it to you, i' the devil's name.
Fern. Come, let us in, and gather of these goods
The money for this tribute of the Turk.
1st Knight. 'Tis necessary that be looked unto:
For if we break our day, we break the league,
And that will prove but simple policy.
[Exeunt all except BARABAS and the Jews.
Bar. Ay, policy! that's their profession,
And not simplicity, as they suggest.
The plagues of Egypt, and the curse of Heaven,
Earth's barrenness, and all men's hatred
Inflict upon them, thou great Primus Motor!
And here upon my knees, striking the earth,
I ban their souls to everlasting pains
And extreme tortures of the fiery deep,
That thus have dealt with me in my distress.
1st Jew. O yet be patient, gentle Barabas.
Bar. O silly brethren, born to see this day;
Why stand you thus unmoved with my laments?
Why weep you not to think upon my wrongs?
Why pine not I, and die in this distress?
1st Jew. Why, Barabas, as hardly can we brook
The cruel handling of ourselves in this;
Thou seest they have taken half our goods.
Bar. Why did you yield to their extortion?
You were a multitude, and I but one:
And of me only have they taken all.
1st Jew. Yet, brother Barabas, remember Job.
Bar. What tell you me of Job? I wot his wealth
Was written thus: he had seven thousand sheep,
Three thousand camels, and two hundred yoke
Of labouring oxen, and five hundred
She asses: but for every one of those,
Had they been valued at indifferent rate,
I had at home, and in mine argosy,
And other ships that came from Egypt last,
As much as would have bought his beasts and him,
And yet have kept enough to live upon:
So that not he, but I may curse the day,
Thy fatal birth-day, forlorn Barabas;
And henceforth wish for an eternal night,
That clouds of darkness may inclose my flesh,
And hide these extreme sorrows from mine eyes:
For only I have toiled to inherit here
The months of vanity and loss of time,
And painful nights, have been appointed me.
2nd Jew. Good Barabas, be patient.
Bar. Ay, I pray, leave me in my patience. You,
Were ne'er possessed of wealth, are pleased with want;
But give him liberty at least to mourn,
That in a field amidst his enemies
Doth see his soldiers slain, himself disarmed,
And knows no means of his recovery:
Ay, let me sorrow for this sudden chance;
'Tis in the trouble of my spirit I speak;
Great injuries are not so soon forgot.
1st Jew. Come, let us leave him; in his ireful mood
Our words will but increase his ecstasy.
2nd Jew. On, then; but trust me 'tis a misery
To see a man in such affliction.—
Farewell, Barabas! [Exeunt the three Jews.
Bar. Ay, fare you well.
See the simplicity of these base slaves,
Who, for the villains have no wit themselves,
Think me to be a senseless lump of clay
That will with every water wash to dirt:
No, Barabas is born to better chance,
And framed of finer mould than common men,
That measure naught but by the present time.
A reaching thought will search his deepest wits,
And cast with cunning for the time to come:
For evils are apt to happen every day.—


But whither wends my beauteous Abigail?
O! what has made my lovely daughter sad?
What, woman! moan not for a little loss:
Thy father hath enough in store for thee.
Abig. Not for myself, but agèd Barabas:
Father, for thee lamenteth Abigail:
But I will learn to leave these fruitless tears,
And, urged thereto with my afflictions,
With fierce exclaims run to the senate-house,
And in the senate reprehend them all,
And rend their hearts with tearing of my hair,
Till they reduce the wrongs done to my father.
Bar. No, Abigail, things past recovery
Are hardly cured with exclamations.
Be silent, daughter, sufferance breeds ease,
And time may yield us an occasion
Which on the sudden cannot serve the turn.
Besides, my girl, think me not all so fond
As negligently to forego so much
Without provision for thyself and me,
Ten thousand portagues, besides great pearls,
Rich costly jewels, and stones infinite,
Fearing the worst of this before it fell,
I closely hid.
Abig. Where, father?
Bar. In my house, my girl.
Abig. Then shall they ne'er be seen of Barabas:
For they have seized upon thy house and wares.
Bar. But they will give me leave once more, I trow, To go into my
Abig. That may they not:
For there I left the governor placing nuns,
Displacing me; and of thy house they mean
To make a nunnery, where none but their own sect
Must enter in; men generally barred.
Bar. My gold! my gold! and all my wealth is gone!
You partial heavens, have I deserved this plague?
What, will you thus oppose me, luckless stars,
To make me desperate in my poverty?
And knowing me impatient in distress,
Think me so mad as I will hang myself,
That I may vanish o'er the earth in air,
And leave no memory that e'er I was?
No, I will live; nor loathe I this my life:
And, since you leave me in the ocean thus
To sink or swim, and put me to my shifts,
I'll rouse my senses and awake myself.
Daughter! I have it: thou perceiv'st the plight
Wherein these Christians have oppressèd me:
Be ruled by me, for in extremity
We ought to make bar of no policy.
Abig. Father, whate'er it be to injure them
That have so manifestly wrongèd us,
What will not Abigail attempt?
Bar. Why, so;
Then thus, thou told'st me they have turned my house
Into a nunnery, and some nuns are there?
Abig. I did.
Bar. Then, Abigail, there must my girl
Entreat the abbess to be entertained.
Abig. How, as a nun?
Bar. Ay, daughter, for religion
Hides many mischiefs from suspicion.
Abig. Ay, but, father, they will suspect me there.
Bar. Let 'em suspect; but be thou so precise
As they may think it done of holiness.
Entreat 'em fair, and give them friendly speech,
And seem to them as if thy sins were great,
Till thou hast gotten to be entertained.
Abig. Thus, father, shall I much dissemble.
Bar. Tush!
As good dissemble that thou never mean'st,
As first mean truth and then dissemble it,—
A counterfeit profession is better
Than unseen hypocrisy.
Abig. Well, father, say that I be entertained,
What then shall follow?
Bar. This shall follow then;
There have I hid, close underneath the plank
That runs along the upper-chamber floor,
The gold and jewels which I kept for thee.
But here they come; be cunning, Abigail.
Abig. Then, father, go with me.
Bar. No, Abigail, in this
It is not necessary I be seen:
For I will seem offended with thee for't:
Be close, my girl, for this must fetch my gold.
[They retire.

Enter Friar JACOMO, Friar BARNARDINE, Abbess, and a Nun.

F. Jac. Sisters, we now are almost at the new-made nunnery.
Abb. The better; for we love not to be seen:
'Tis thirty winters long since some of us
Did stray so far amongst the multitude.
F. Jac. But, madam, this house
And waters of this new-made nunnery
Will much delight you.
Abb. It may be so; but who comes here?
[ABIGAIL comes forward.
Abig. Grave abbess, and you, happy virgins' guide,
Pity the state of a distressèd maid.
Abb. What art thou, daughter?
Abig. The hopeless daughter of a hapless Jew,
The Jew of Malta, wretched Barabas;
Sometime the owner of a goodly house,
Which they have now turned to a nunnery.
Abb. Well, daughter, say, what is thy suit with us?
Abig. Fearing the afflictions which my father feels
Proceed from sin, or want of faith in us,
I'd pass away my life in penitence,
And be a novice in your nunnery,
To make atonement for my labouring soul.
F. Jac. No doubt, brother, but this proceedeth of the spirit.
F. Barn. Ay, and of a moving spirit too, brother; but come,
Let us entreat she may be entertained.
Abb. Well, daughter, we admit you for a nun.
Abig. First let me as a novice learn to frame
My solitary life to your strait laws,
And let me lodge where I was wont to lie,
I do not doubt, by your divine precepts
And mine own industry, but to profit much.
Bar. As much, I hope, as all I hid is worth. [Aside.
Abb. Come, daughter, follow us.
Bar. (coming forward). Why, how now, Abigail,
What makest thou amongst these hateful Christians?
F. Jac. Hinder her not, thou man of little faith,
For she has mortified herself.
Bar. How! mortified?
F. Jac. And is admitted to the sisterhood.
Bar. Child of perdition, and thy father's shame!
What wilt thou do among these hateful fiends?
I charge thee on my blessing that thou leave
These devils, and their damnèd heresy.
Abig. Father, forgive me— [She goes to him.
Bar. Nay, back, Abigail,
(And think upon the jewels and the gold;
[Aside to ABIGAIL in a whisper.
The board is markèd thus that covers it.)
Away, accursèd, from thy father's sight.
F. Jac. Barabas, although thou art in misbelief,
And wilt not see thine own afflictions,
Yet let thy daughter be no longer blind.
Bar. Blind friar, I reck not thy persuasions,
(The board is markèd thus that covers it.)
[Aside to ABIGAIL in a whisper.
For I had rather die than see her thus.
Wilt thou forsake me too in my distress,
Seducèd daughter? (Go, forget not,) [Aside in a whisper.
Becomes it Jews to be so credulous?
(To-morrow early I'll be at the door.) [Aside in a whisper.
No, come not at me; if thou wilt be damned,
Forget me, see me not, and so be gone.
(Farewell, remember to-morrow morning.)
[Aside in a whisper.
Out, out, thou wretch!
[Exeunt, on one side BARABAS, on the other side Friars,
Abbess, Nun, and ABIGAIL; as they are going out,


Math. Who's this? fair Abigail, the rich Jew's daughter,
Become a nun! her father's sudden fall
Has humbled her and brought her down to this:
Tut, she were fitter for a tale of love,
Than to be tirèd out with orisons:
And better would she far become a bed,
Embracèd in a friendly lover's arms,
Than rise at midnight to a solemn mass.


Lod. Why, how now, Don Mathias! in a dump?
Math. Believe me, noble Lodowick, I have seen
The strangest sight, in my opinion,
That ever I beheld.
Lod. What was't, I prithee?
Math. A fair young maid, scarce fourteen years of age,
The sweetest flower in Cytherea's field,
Cropt from the pleasures of the fruitful earth,
And strangely metamorphosèd nun.
Lod. But say, what was she?
Math. Why, the rich Jew's daughter.
Lod. What, Barabas, whose goods were lately seized?
Is she so fair?
Math. And matchless beautiful;
As, had you seen her, 'twould have moved your heart,
Though countermined with walls of brass, to love,
Or at the least to pity.
Lod. And if she be so fair as you report,
Twere time well spent to go and visit her:
How say you, shall we?
Math. I must and will, sir; there's no remedy.
Lod. And so will I too, or it shall go hard.
Farewell, Mathias.
Math. Farewell, Lodowick. [Exeunt severally.



Enter BARABAS with a light.

BAR. Thus, like the sad presaging raven, that tolls
The sick man's passport in her hollow beak,
And in the shadow of the silent night
Doth shake contagion from her sable wings;
Vexed and tormented runs poor Barabas
With fatal curses towards these Christians.
The uncertain pleasures of swift-footed time
Have ta'en their flight, and left me in despair;
And of my former riches rests no more
But bare remembrance, like a soldier's scar,
That has no further comfort for his maim.
O thou, that with a fiery pillar led'st
The sons of Israel through the dismal shades,
Light Abraham's offspring; and direct the hand
Of Abigail this night; or let the day
Turn to eternal darkness after this!
No sleep can fasten on my watchful eyes,
Nor quiet enter my distempered thoughts,
Till I have answer of my Abigail.

Enter ABIGAIL above.

Abig. Now have I happily espied a time
To search the plank my father did appoint;
And here behold, unseen, where I have found
The gold, the pearls, and jewels, which he hid.
Bar. Now I remember those old women's words,
Who in my wealth would tell me winter's tales,
And speak of spirits and ghosts that glide by night
About the place where treasure hath been hid:
And now methinks that I am one of those:
For whilst I live, here lives my soul's sole hope,
And, when I die, here shall my spirit walk.
Abig. Now that my father's fortune were so good
As but to be about this happy place;
Tis not so happy: yet when we parted last,
He said he would attend me in the morn.
Then, gentle sleep, where'er his body rests,
Give charge to Morpheus that he may dream
A golden dream, and of the sudden wake,
Come and receive the treasure I have found.
Bar. Bueno para todos mi ganado no era:
As good go on as sit so sadly thus.
But stay, what star shines yonder in the east?
The loadstar of my life, if Abigail.
Who's there?
Abig. Who's that?
Bar. Peace, Abigail, 'tis I.
Abig. Then, father, here receive thy happiness.
Bar. Hast thou't?
Abig. Here, [Throws down the bags] hast thou't?
There's more, and more, and more.
Bar. O my girl,
My gold, my fortune, my felicity!
Strength to my soul, death to mine enemy!
Welcome the first beginner of my bliss!
O Abigail, Abigail, that I had thee here too!
Then my desires were fully satisfied:
But I will practise thy enlargement thence:
O girl! O gold! O beauty! O my bliss!
[Hugs the bags.
Abig. Father, it draweth towards midnight now,
And 'bout this time the nuns begin to wake;
To shun suspicion, therefore, let us part.
Bar. Farewell, my joy, and by my fingers take
A kiss from him that sends it from his soul.
[Exit ABIGAIL above.
Now Phœbus ope the eyelids of the day,
And for the raven wake the morning lark,
That I may hover with her in the air;
Singing o'er these, as she does o'er her young.
Hermoso placer de los dineros. [Exit.


Enter FERNEZE, MARTIN DEL Bosco, and Knights.

Fern. Now, captain, tell us whither thou art bound?
Whence is thy ship that anchors in our road?
And why thou cam'st ashore without our leave?
Bosc. Governor of Malta, hither am I bound;
My ship, the Flying Dragon, is of Spain,
And so am I: Del Bosco is my name;
Vice-admiral unto the Catholic King.
1st Knight. 'Tis true, my lord, therefore entreat him well.
Bosc. Our fraught is Grecians, Turks, and Afric Moors.
For late upon the coast of Corsica,
Because we vailed not to the Turkish fleet,
Their creeping galleys had us in the chase:
But suddenly the wind began to rise,
And then we luffed and tacked, and fought at ease:
Some have we fired, and many have we sunk;
But one amongst the rest became our prize:
The captain's slain, the rest remain our slaves,
Of whom we would make sale in Malta here.
Fern. Martin del Bosco, I have heard of thee;
Welcome to Malta, and to all of us;
But to admit a sale of these thy Turks
We may not, nay, we dare not give consent
By reason of a tributary league.
1st Knight. Del Bosco, as thou lov'st and honour'st us,
Persuade our governor against the Turk;
This truce we have is but in hope of gold,
And with that sum he craves might we wage war.
Bosc. Will Knights of Malta be in league with Turks,
And buy it basely too for sums of gold?
My lord, remember that, to Europe's shame,
The Christian Isle of Rhodes, from whence you came,
Was lately lost, and you were stated here
To be at deadly enmity with Turks.
Fern. Captain, we know it, but our force is small.
Bosc. What is the sum that Calymath requires?
Fern. A hundred thousand crowns.
Bosc. My lord and king hath title to this isle,
And he means quickly to expel you hence;
Therefore be ruled by me, and keep the gold:
I'll write unto his majesty for aid,
And not depart until I see you free.
Fern. On this condition shall thy Turks be sold:
Go, officers, and set them straight in show.
[Exeunt Officers.
Bosco, thou shalt be Malta's general;
We and our warlike Knights will follow thee
Against these barb'rous misbelieving Turks.
Bosc. So Shall you imitate those you succeed:
For when their hideous force environed Rhodes,
Small though the number was that kept the town,
They fought it out, and not a man survived
To bring the hapless news to Christendom.
Fern. So will we fight it out; come, let's away:
Proud daring Calymath, instead of gold,
We'll send thee bullets wrapt in smoke and fire:
Claim tribute where thou wilt, we are resolved,
Honour is bought with blood and not with gold.


Enter Officers with ITHAMORE and other Slaves.
1st Off. This is the market-place, here let 'em stand:
Fear not their sale, for they'll be quickly bought.
2nd Off. Every one's price is written on his back,
And so much must they yield or not be sold.
1st Off. Here comes the Jew; had not his goods been seized,
He'd given us present money for them all.


Bar. In spite of these swine-eating Christians,—
Unchosen nation, never circumcised,
Such as (poor villains!) were ne'er thought upon
Till Titus and Vespasian conquered us,—
Am I become as wealthy as I was:
They hoped my daughter would ha' been a nun;
But she's at home, and I have bought a house
As great and fair as is the governor's;
And there in spite of Malta will I dwell,
Having Ferneze's hand, whose heart I'll have;
Ay, and his son's too, or it shall go hard.
I am not of the tribe of Levi, I,
That can so soon forget an injury.
We Jews can fawn like spaniels when we please:
And when we grin we bite, yet are our looks
As innocent and harmless as a lamb's.
I learned in Florence how to kiss my hand,
Heave up my shoulders when they call me dog,
And duck as low as any barefoot friar;
Hoping to see them starve upon a stall,
Or else be gathered for in our synagogue,
That, when the offering-basin comes to me,
Even for charity I may spit into't.
Here comes Don Lodowick, the governor's son,
One that I love for his good father's sake.


Lod. I hear the wealthy Jew walkèd this way:
I'll seek him out, and so insinuate,
That I may have a sight of Abigail;
For Don Mathias tells me she is fair.
Bar. Now will I show myself.
To have more of the serpent than the dove;
That is—more knave than fool. [Aside.
Lod. Yond' walks the Jew; now for fair Abigail.
Bar. Ay, ay, no doubt but she's at your command. [Aside.
Lod. Barabas, thou know'st I am the governor's son.
Bar. I would you were his father, too, sir;
That's all the harm I wish you.—The slave looks
Like a hog's-cheek new singed. [Aside.
Lod. Whither walk'st thou, Barabas?
Bar. No farther: 'tis a custom held with us,
That when we speak with Gentiles like to you,
We turn into the air to purge ourselves:
For unto us the promise doth belong.
Lod. Well, Barabas, canst help me to a diamond?
Bar. O, sir, your father had my diamonds.
Yet I have one left that will serve your turn:—
I mean my daughter: but ere he shall have her
I'll sacrifice her on a pile of wood.
I ha' the poison of the city for him,
And the white leprosy. [Aside.
Lod. What sparkle does it give without a foil?
Bar. The diamond that I talk of ne'er was foiled:—
But when he touches it, it will be foiled:— [Aside.
Lord Lodowick, it sparkles bright and fair.
Lon. Is it square or pointed, pray let me know.
Bar. Pointed it is, good sir—but not for you. [Aside.
Lod. I like it much the better.
Bar. So do I too.
Lod. How shows it by night?
Bar. Outshines Cynthia's rays:
You'll like it better far o' nights than days. [Aside.
Lod. And what's the price?
Bar. Your life an if you have it. [Aside.] O my lord,
We will not jar about the price; come to my house
And I will give't your honour—with a vengeance. [Aside.
Lod. No, Barabas, I will deserve it first.
Bar. Good sir,
Your father has deserved it at my hands,
Who, of mere charity and Christian truth,
To bring me to religious purity,
And as it were in catechising sort,
To make me mindful of my mortal sins,
Against my will, and whether I would or no,
Seized all I had, and thrust me out o' doors,
And made my house a place for nuns most chaste.
Lod. No doubt your soul shall reap the fruit of it.
Bar. Ay, but, my lord, the harvest is far off.
And yet I know the prayers of those nuns
And holy friars, having money for their pains,
Are wondrous;—and indeed do no man good: [Aside.
And seeing they are not idle, but still doing,
'Tis likely they in time may reap some fruit,
I mean in fulness of perfection.
Lod. Good Barabas, glance not at our holy nuns.
Bar. No, but I do it through a burning zeal,—
Hoping ere long to set the house afire;
For though they do a while increase and multiply,
I'll have a saying to that nunnery.— [Aside.
As for the diamond, sir, I told you of,
Come home and there's no price shall make us part,
Even for your honourable father's sake.—
It shall go hard but I will see your death.— [Aside.
But now I must be gone to buy a slave.
Lod. And, Barabas, I'll bear thee company.
Bar. Come then—here's the market-place.
What's the price of this slave? Two hundred crowns!
Do the Turks weigh so much?
1st Off. Sir, that's his price.
Bar. What, can he steal that you demand so much?
Belike he has some new trick for a purse;
And if he has, he is worth three hundred plates,
So that, being bought, the town-seal might be got
To keep him for his lifetime from the gallows:
The sessions day is critical to thieves,
And few or none 'scape but by being purged.
Lod. Rat'st thou this Moor but at two hundred plates?
1st Off. No more, my lord.
Bar. Why should this Turk be dearer than that Moor?
1st Off. Because he is young and has more qualities.
Bar. What, hast the philosopher's stone? an thou hast,
break my head with it, I'll forgive thee.
Slave. No, sir; I can cut and shave.
Bar. Let me see, sirrah, are you not an old shaver?
Slave. Alas, sir! I am a very youth.
Bar. A youth? I'll buy you, and marry you to Lady
Vanity, if you do well.
Slave. I will serve you, sir.
Bar. Some wicked trick or other. It may be, under colour of shaving,
thou'lt cut my throat for my goods. Tell me, hast thou thy health well?
Slave. Ay, passing well.
Bar. So much the worse; I must have one that's sickly, an't be but for
sparing victuals: 'tis not a stone of beef a day will maintain you in these
chops; let me see one that's somewhat leaner.
1st Off. Here's a leaner, how like you him?
Bar. Where wast thou born?
Itha. In Thrace; brought up in Arabia.
Bar. So much the better, thou art for my turn.
An hundred crowns? I'll have him; there's the coin.
[Gives money.
1st Off. Then mark him, sir, and take him hence.
Bar. Ay, mark him, you were best, for this is he
That by my help shall do much villainy. [Aside.
My lord, farewell: Come, sirrah, you are mine.
As for the diamond, it shall be yours;
I pray, sir, be no stranger at my house,
All that I have shall be at your command.


Math. What makes the Jew and Lodowick so private?
I fear me 'tis about fair Abigail. [Aside.
Bar. Yonder comes Don Mathias, let us stay;
He loves my daughter, and she holds him dear:
But I have sworn to frustrate both their hopes,
And be revenged upon the governor.
Kath. This Moor is comeliest, is he not? speak, son.
Math. No, this is the better, mother; view this well.
Bar. Seem not to know me here before your mother,
Lest she mistrust the match that is in hand:
When you have brought her home, come to my house;
Think of me as thy father; son, farewell.
Math. But wherefore talked Don Lodowick with you?
Bar. Tush! man, we talked of diamonds, not of Abigail.
Kath. Tell me, Mathias, is not that the Jew?
Bar. As for the comment on the Maccabees,
I have it, sir, and 'tis at your command.
Math. Yes, madam, and my talk with him was but
About the borrowing of a book or two.
Kath. Converse not with him, he's cast off from heaven.
Thou hast thy crowns, fellow; come, let's away.
Math. Sirrah, Jew, remember the book.
Bar. Marry will I, sir.
[Exeunt MATHIAS and his Mother.
Off. Come, I have made reasonable market; let's away.
[Exeunt Officers with Slaves.
Bar. Now let me know thy name, and therewithal
Thy birth, condition, and profession.
Itha. Faith, sir, my birth is but mean: my name's
Ithamore, my profession what you please.
Bar. Hast thou no trade? then listen to my words,
And I will teach thee that shall stick by thee:
First be thou void of these affections,
Compassion, love, vain hope, and heartless fear,
Be moved at nothing, see thou pity none,
But to thyself smile when the Christians moan.
Itha. O brave! master, I worship you nose for this.
Bar. As for myself, I walk abroad o' nights
And kill sick people groaning under walls:
Sometimes I go about and poison wells;
And now and then, to cherish Christian thieves,
I am content to lose some of my crowns,
That I may, walking in my gallery,
See 'em go pinioned along by my door.
Being young, I studied physic, and began
To practise first upon the Italian;
There I enriched the priests with burials,
And always kept the sextons' arms in ure
With digging graves and ringing dead men's knells:
And after that was I an engineer,
And in the wars 'twixt France and Germany,
Under pretence of helping Charles the Fifth,
Slew friend and enemy with my stratagems.
Then after that was I an usurer,
And with extorting, cozening, forfeiting,
And tricks belonging unto brokery,
I filled the jails with bankrupts in a year,
And with young orphans planted hospitals,
And every moon made some or other mad,
And now and then one hang himself for grief,
Pinning upon his breast a long great scroll
How I with interest tormented him.
But mark how I am blest for plaguing them;
I have as much coin as will buy the town.
But tell me now, how hast thou spent thy time?
Itha. 'Faith, master,
In setting Christian villages on fire,
Chaining of eunuchs, binding galley-slaves.
One time I was an ostler in an inn,
And in the night-time secretly, would I steal
To travellers' chambers, and there cut their throats:
Once at Jerusalem, where the pilgrims kneeled,
I strewèd powder on the marble stones,
And therewithal their knees would rankle so,
That I have laughed a-good to see the cripples
Go limping home to Christendom on stilts.
Bar. Why this is something: make account of me
As of thy fellow; we are villains both:
Both circumcisèd, we hate Christians both:
Be true and secret, thou shalt want no gold.
But stand aside, here comes Don Lodowick.


Lod. O Barabas, well met;
Where is the diamond you told me of?
Bar. I have it for you, sir; please you walk in with me:
What ho, Abigail! open the door, I say.

Enter ABIGAIL with letters.

Abig. In good time, father; here are letters come
From Ormus, and the post stays here within.
Bar. Give me the letters.—Daughter, do you hear,
Entertain Lodowick the governor's son
With all the courtesy you can afford;
Provided that you keep your maidenhead.
Use him as if he were a Philistine,
Dissemble, swear, protest, vow love to him,
He is not of the seed of Abraham. [Aside.
I am a little busy, sir, pray pardon me.
Abigail, bid him welcome for my sake.
Abig. For your sake and his own he's welcome hither.
Bar. Daughter, a word more; kiss him; speak him fair,
And like a cunning Jew so cast about,
That ye be both made sure ere you come out. [Aside.
Abig. O father! Don Mathias is my love.
Bar. I know it: yet I say, make love to him;
Do, it is requisite it should be so— [Aside.
Nay, on my life, it is my factor's hand—
But go you in, I'll think upon the account.
[Exeunt ABIGAIL and LODOWICK into the house.
The account is made, for Lodowick he dies.
My factor sends me word a merchant's fled
That owes me for a hundred tun of wine:
I weigh it thus much [Snapping his fingers]; I have wealth enough.
For now by this has he kissed Abigail;
And she vows love to him, and he to her.
As sure as Heaven rained manna for the Jews,
So sure shall he and Don Mathias die:
His father was my chiefest enemy.


Whither goes Don Mathias? stay awhile.
Math. Whither, but to my fair love Abigail?
Bar. Thou know'st, and Heaven can witness this is true,
That I intend my daughter shall be thine.
Math. Ay, Barabas, or else thou wrong'st me much.
Bar. O, Heaven forbid I should have such a thought.
Pardon me though I weep: the governor's son
Will, whether I will or no, have Abigail:
He sends her letters, bracelets, jewels, rings.
Math. Does she receive them?
Bar. She? No, Mathias, no, but sends, them back,
And when he comes, she locks herself up fast;
Yet through the keyhole will he talk to her,
While she runs to the window looking out,
When you should come and bale him from the door.
Math. O treacherous Lodowick!
Bar. Even now as I came home, he slipt me in,
And I am sure he is with Abigail.
Math. I'll rouse him thence.
Bar. Not for all Malta, therefore sheathe your sword;
If you love me, no quarrels in my house;
But steal you in, and seem to see him not;
I'll give him such a warning ere he goes
As he shall have small hopes of Abigail.
Away, for here they come.


Math. What, hand in hand! I cannot suffer this.
Bar. Mathias, as thou lovest me, not a word.
Math. Well, let it pass, another time shall serve.
[Exit into the house.
Lod. Barabas, is not that the widow's son?
Bar. Ay, and take heed, for he hath sworn your death.
Lod. My death? what, is the base-born peasant mad?
Bar. No, no, but happily he stands in fear
Of that which you, I think, ne'er dream upon,
My daughter here, a paltry silly girl.
Lod. Why, loves she Don Mathias?
Bar. Doth she not with her smiling answer you?
Abig. He has my heart; I smile against my will. [Aside.
Lod. Barabas, thou know'st I've loved thy daughter long.
Bar. And so has she done you, even from a child.
Lod. And now I can no longer hold my mind.
Bar. Nor I the affection that I bear to you.
Lod. This is thy diamond, tell me shall I have it?
Bar. Win it, and wear it, it is yet unsoiled.
O! but I know your lordship would disdain
To marry with the daughter of a Jew;
And yet I'll give her many a golden cross
With Christian posies round about the ring.
Lod. 'Tis not thy wealth, but her that I esteem.
Yet crave I thy consent.
Bar. And mine you have, yet let me talk to her.—
This offspring of Cain, this Jebusite,
That never tasted of the Passover,
Nor e'er shall see the land of Canaan,
Nor our Messias that is yet to come;
This gentle maggot, Lodowick, I mean,
Must be deluded: let him have thy hand,
But keep thy heart till Don Mathias comes. [Aside.
Abig. What, shall I be betrothed to Lodowick?
Bar. It's no sin to deceive a Christian;
For they themselves hold it a principle,
Faith is not to be held with heretics;
But all are heretics that are not Jews;
This follows well, and therefore, daughter, fear not.
I have entreated her, and she will grant.
Lod. Then, gentle Abigail, plight thy faith to me.
Abig. I cannot choose, seeing my father bids.—
Nothing but death shall part my love and me. [Aside.
Lod. Now have I that for which my soul hath longed.
Bar. So have not I, but yet I hope I shall. [Aside.
Abig. O wretched Abigail, what hast thou done? [Aside.
Lod. Why on the sudden is your colour changed?
Abig. I know not, but farewell, I must be gone.
Bar. Stay her, but let her not speak one word more.
Lod. Mute o' the sudden! here's a sudden change.
Bar. O, muse not at it, 'tis the Hebrews' guise,
That maidens new betrothed should weep awhile:
Trouble her not; sweet Lodowick, depart:
She is thy wife, and thou shalt be mine heir.
Lod. O, is't the custom? then I am resolved:
But rather let the brightsome heavens be dim,
And nature's beauty choke with stifling clouds,
Than my fair Abigail should frown on me.—
There comes the villain, now I'll be revenged.

Re-enter MATHIAS.

Bar. Be quiet, Lodowick, it is enough
That I have made thee sure to Abigail.
Lod. Well, let him go. [Exit.
Bar. Well, but for me, as you went in at doors.
You had been stabbed, but not a word on't now;
Here must no speeches pass, nor swords be drawn.
Math. Suffer me, Barabas, but to follow him.
Bar. No; so shall I, if any hurt be done,
Be made an accessory of your deeds;
Revenge it on him when you meet him next.
Math. For this I'll have his heart.
Bar. Do so; lo here I give thee Abigail.
Math. What greater gift can poor Mathias have?
Shall Lodowick rob me of so fair a love?
My life is not so dear as Abigail.
Bar. My heart misgives me, that, to cross your love,
He's with your mother; therefore after him.
Math. What, is he gone unto my mother?
Bar. Nay, if you will, stay till she comes herself.
Math. I cannot stay; for if my mother come,
She'll die with grief. [Exit.
Abig. I cannot take my leave of him for tears:
Father, why have you thus incensed them both?
Bar. What's that to thee?
Abig. I'll make 'em friends again.
Bar. You'll make 'em friends!
Are there not Jews enow in Malta,
But thou must doat upon a Christian?
Abig. I will have Don Mathias, he is my love
Bar. Yes, you shall have him: go put her in
Itha. Ay, I'll put her in. [Puts ABIGAIL in.
Bar. Now tell me, Ithamore, how lik'st thou this?
Itha. Faith, master, I think by this
You purchase both their lives; is it not so?
Bar. True; and it shall be cunningly performed.
Itha. O master, that I might have a hand in this.
Bar. Ay, so thou shalt, 'tis thou must do the deed:
Take this, and bear it to Mathias straight,
[Gives a letter.
And tell him that it comes from Lodowick.
Itha. 'Tis poisoned, is it not?
Bar. No, no, and yet it might be done that way:
It is a challenge feigned from Lodowick.
Itha. Fear not; I will so set his heart afire,
That he shall verily think it comes from him.
Bar. I cannot choose but like thy readiness:
Yet be not rash, but do it cunningly.
Itha. As I behave myself in this, employ me hereafter.
Bar. Away then. [Exit ITHAMORE.
So, now will I go in to Lodowick,
And, like a cunning spirit, feign some lie.
Till I have set 'em both at enmity. [Exit.



Enter BELLAMIRA, a Courtesan.

BELL. Since this town was besieged, my gain grows cold:
The time has been that, but for one bare night,
A hundred ducats have been freely given:
But now against my will I must be chaste;
And yet I know my beauty doth not fail.
From Venice merchants, and from Padua
Were wont to come rare-witted gentlemen,
Scholars I mean, learnèd and liberal;
And now, save Pilia-Borsa, comes there none,
And he is very seldom from my house;
And here he comes.


Pilia. Hold thee, wench, there's something for thee to spend.
a bag of silver.
Bell. 'Tis silver. I disdain it.
Pilia. Ay, but the Jew has gold,
And I will have it, or it shall go hard.
Court. Tell me, how cam'st thou by this?
Pilia. 'Faith, walking the back-lanes, through the gardens, I chanced
to cast mine eye up to the Jew's counting-house, where I saw some bags of
and in the night I clambered up with my hooks, and, as I was taking my
choice, I
heard a rumbling in the house; so I took only this, and run my way: but here's
the Jew's man.
Bell. Hide the bag.


Pilia. Look not towards him, let's away; zoons, what a looking thou
keep'st; thou'lt betray's anon.
Itha. O the sweetest face that ever I beheld! I know she is a
by her attire: now would I give a hundred of the Jew's crowns that I
had such a
Well, I have delivered the challenge in such sort,
As meet they will, and fighting die; brave sport. [Exit.



Math. This is the place; now Abigail shall see
Whether Mathias holds her dear or no.


What, dares the villain write in such base terms?
[Reading a letter.
Lod. I did it; and revenge it if thou dar'st.
[They fight.

Enter BARABAS, above, on a balcony.

Bar. O! bravely fought; and yet they thrust not home.
Now, Lodovico! now, Mathias! So_____ [Both fall.
So now they have showed themselves to be tall fellows.
[Cries within.] Part 'em, part 'em.
Bar. Ay, part 'em now they are dead. Farewell, farewell. [Exit.

Enter FERNEZE, KATHERINE, and Attendants.

Fern. What sight is this!—my Lodowick slain!
These arms of mine shall be thy sepulchre.
Kath. Who is this? my son Mathias slain!
Fern. O Lodowick! had'st thou perished by the Turk,
Wretched Ferneze might have 'venged thy death.
Kath. Thy son slew mine, and I'll revenge his death.
Fern. Look, Katherine, look!—thy son gave mine these wounds.
Kath. O leave to grieve me, I am grieved enough.
Fern. O! that my sighs could turn to lively breath;
And these my tears to blood, that he might live.
Kath. Who made them enemies?
Fern. I know not, and that grieves me most of all.
Kath. My son loved thine.
Fern. And so did Lodowick him.
Kath. Lend me that weapon that did kill my son,
And it shall murder me.
Fern. Nay, madam, stay; that weapon was my son's,
And on that rather should Ferneze die.
Kath. Hold, let's inquire the causers of their deaths,
That we may 'venge their blood upon their heads.
Fern. Then take them up, and let them be interred
Within one sacred monument of stone;
Upon which altar I will offer up
My daily sacrifice of sighs and tears,
And with my prayers pierce impartial heavens,
Till they reveal the causers of our smarts,
Which forced their hands divide united hearts:
Come, Katherine, our losses equal are,
Then of true grief let us take equal share.
[Exeunt with the bodies.



Itha. Why, was there ever seen such villainy,
So neatly plotted, and so well performed?
Both held in hand, and flatly both beguiled?


Abig. Why, how now, Ithamore, why laugh'st thou so?
Itha. O mistress, ha! ha! ha!
Abig. Why, what ail'st thou?
Itha. O my master!
Abig. Ha!
Itha. O mistress! I have the bravest, gravest, secret, subtle,
nosed knave to my master, that ever gentleman had.
Abig. Say, knave, why rail'st upon my father thus?
Itha. O, my master has the bravest policy.
Abig. Wherein?
Itha. Why, know you not?
Abig. Why, no.
Itha. Know you not of Mathias' and Don Lodowick's disaster?
Abig. No, what was it?
Itha. Why, the devil invented a challenge, my master writ it, and I
carried it, first to Lodowick, and imprimis to Mathias.
And then they met, and, as the story says,
In doleful wise they ended both their days.
Abig. And was my father furtherer of their deaths?
Itha. Am I Ithamore?
Abig. Yes.
Itha. So sure did your father write, and I carry the challenge.
Abig. Well, Ithamore, let me request thee this,
Go to the new-made nunnery, and inquire
For any of the friars of Saint Jaques,
And say, I pray them come and speak with me.
Itha. I pray, mistress, will you answer me but one question?
Abig. Well, sirrah, what is't?
Itha. A very feeling one; have not the nuns fine sport with
the friars
now and then?
Abig. Go to, sirrah sauce, is this your question? get ye gone.
Itha. I will, forsooth, mistress. [Exit.
Abig. Hard-hearted father, unkind Barabas!
Was this the pursuit of thy policy!
To make me show them favour severally,
That by my favour they should both be slain?
Admit thou lov'dst not Lodowick for his sire,
Yet Don Mathias ne'er offended thee:
But thou wert set upon extreme revenge,
Because the governor dispossessed thee once,
And could'st not 'venge it, but upon his son
Nor on his son, but by Mathias' means;
Nor on Mathias, but by murdering me.
But I perceive there is no love on earth,
Pity in Jews, or piety in Turks.
But here comes cursed Ithamore, with the friar.

Enter. ITHAMORE and Friar JACOMO.

F. Jac. Virgo, salve.
Itha. When! duck you!
Abig. Welcome, grave friar; Ithamore, begone.
Know, holy sir, I am bold to solicit thee.
F. Jac. Wherein?
Abig. To get me be admitted for a nun.
F. Jac. Why, Abigail, it is not yet long since
That I did labour thy admission,
And then thou did'st not like that holy life.
Abig. Then were my thoughts so frail and unconfirmed,
And I was chained to follies of the world:
But now experience, purchasèd with grief,
Has made me see the difference of things.
My sinful soul, alas, hath paced too long
The fatal labyrinth of misbelief,
Far from the sun that gives eternal life.
F. Jac. Who taught thee this?
Abig. The abbess of the house,
Whose zealous admonition I embrace:
O, therefore, Jacomo, let me be one,
Although unworthy, of that sisterhood.
F. Jac. Abigail, I will, but see thou change no more,
For that will be most heavy to thy soul.
Abig. That was my father's fault.
F. Jac. Thy father's! how?
Abig. Nay, you shall pardon me.—O Barabas,
Though thou deservest hardly at my hands,
Yet never shall these lips bewray thy life. [Aside.
F. Jac. Come, shall we go?
Abig. My duty waits on you. [Exeunt.


Enter BARABAS, reading a letter.

Bar. What, Abigail become a nun again!
False and unkind; what, hast thou lost thy father?
And all unknown, and unconstrained of me,
Art thou again got to the nunnery?
Now here she writes, and wills me to repent.
Repentance! Spurca! what pretendeth this?
I fear she knows—'tis so—of my device
In Don Mathias' and Lodovico's deaths:
If so, 'tis time that it be seen into:
For she that varies from me in belief
Gives great presumption that she loves me not;
Or loving, doth dislike of something done.—
But who comes here?


O Ithamore, come near;
Come near, my love; come near, thy master's life,
My trusty servant, nay, my second self:
For I have now no hope but even in thee,
And on that hope my happiness is built.
When saw'st thou Abigail?
Itha. To-day.
Bar. With whom?
Itha. A friar.
Bar. A friar! false villain, he hath done the deed.
Itha. How, sir?
Bar. Why, made mine Abigail a nun.
Itha. That's no lie, for she sent me for him.
Bar. O unhappy day!
False, credulous, inconstant Abigail!
But let 'em go: and, Ithamore, from hence
Ne'er shall she grieve me more with her disgrace ;
Ne'er shall she live to inherit aught of mine,
Be blest of me, nor come within my gates,
But perish underneath my bitter curse,
Like Cain by Adam for his brother's death.
Itha. O master!
Bar. Ithamore, entreat not for her, I am moved,
And she is hateful to my soul and me:
And 'less thou yield to this that I entreat,
I cannot think but that thou hat'st my life.
Itha. Who, I, master? Why, I'll run to some rock,
And throw myself headlong into the sea;
Why, I'll do anything for your sweet sake.
Bar. O trusty Ithamore, no servant, but my friend:
I here adopt thee for mine only heir,
All that I have is thine when I am dead,
And whilst I live use half; spend as myself;
Here take my keys, I'll give 'em thee anon:
Go buy thee garments: but thou shalt not want:
Only know this, that thus thou art to do:
But first go fetch me in the pot of rice
That for our supper stands upon the fire.
Itha. I hold my head my master's hungry. [Aside.] I go, sir.
Bar. Thus every villain ambles after wealth,
Although he ne'er be richer than in hope:
But, husht!

Re-enter ITHAMORE with the pot.

Itha. Here 'tis, master,
Bar. Well said, Ithamore; what, hast thou brought
The ladle with thee too?
Itha. Yes, sir, the proverb says he that eats with the devil had need
of a long spoon. I have brought you a ladle.
Bar. Very well, Ithamore, then now be secret;
And for thy sake, whom I so dearly love,
Now shalt thou see the death of Abigail,
That thou may'st freely live to be my heir.
Itha. Why, master, will you poison her with a mess of rice porridge?
that will preserve life, make her round and plump, and batten more than you
Bar. Ay, but, Ithamore, seest thou this?
It is a precious powder that I bought
Of an Italian, in Ancona, once,
Whose operation is to bind, infect,
And poison deeply, yet not appear
In forty hours after it is ta'en.
Itha. How, master?
Bar. Thus, Ithamore.
This even they use in Malta here,—'tis called
Saint Jacques' Even,—and then I say they use
To send their alms unto the nunneries:
Among the rest bear this, and set it there;
There's a dark entry where they take it in,
Where they must neither see the messenger,
Nor make inquiry who hath sent it them.
Itha. How so?
Bar. Belike there is some ceremony in't.
There, Ithamore, must thou go place this pot!
Stay, let me spice it first.
Itha. Pray do, and let me help you, master. Pray let me taste first.
Bar. Prythee do [ITHAMORE tastes]: what say'st thou now?
Itha. Troth, master, I'm loth such a pot of pottage should be
Bar. Peace, Ithamore, 'tis better so than spared.
Assure thyself thou shalt have broth by the eye,
My purse, my coffer, and myself is thine.
Itha. Well, master, I go.
Bar. Stay, first let me stir it, Ithamore.
As fatal be it to her as the draught
Of which great Alexander drunk and died:
And with her let it work like Borgia's wine,
Whereof his sire, the Pope, was poisonèd.
In few, the blood of Hydra, Lerna's bane:
The juice of hebon, and Cocytus' breath,
And all the poisons of the Stygian pool
Break from the fiery kingdom; and in this
Vomit your venom and invenom her
That like a fiend hath left her father thus.
Itha. What a blessing has he given't! was ever pot of rice
porridge so
sauced! [Aside.] What shall I do with it?
Bar. O, my sweet Ithamore, go set it down,
And come again so soon as thou hast done,
For I have other business for thee.
Itha. Here's a drench to poison a whole stable of
Flanders mares: I'll carry 't to the nuns with a powder.
Bar. And the horse pestilence to boot; away!
Itha. I am gone.
Pay me my wages, for my work is done. [Exit.
Bar. I'll pay thee with a vengeance, Ithamore. [Exit.


Enter FERNEZE, MARTIN, DEL BOSCO, Knights, and Basso.

Fern. Welcome, great basso; how fares Calymath?
What wind drives you thus into Malta-road?
Bas. The wind that bloweth all the world besides,—
Desire of gold.
Fern. Desire of gold, great sir?
That's to be gotten in the Western Ind:
In Malta are no golden minerals.
Bas. To you of Malta thus saith Calymath:
The time you took for respite is at hand,
For the performance of your promise passed,
And for the tribute-money I am sent.
Fern. Basso, in brief, 'shalt have no tribute here,
Nor shall the heathens live upon our spoil:
First will we raze the city walls ourselves,
Lay waste the island, hew the temples down,
And, shipping off our goods to Sicily,
Open an entrance for the wasteful sea,
Whose billows beating the resistless banks,
Shall overflow it with their refluence.
Bas. Well, Governor, since thou hast broke the league
By flat denial of the promised tribute,
Talk not of razing down your city walls,
You shall not need trouble yourselves so far,
For Selim Calymath shall come himself,
And with brass bullets batter down your towers,
And turn proud Malta to a wilderness
For these intolerable wrongs of yours;
And so farewell.
Fern. Farewell: [Exit Basso.
Fern. And now, ye men of Malta, look about,
And let's provide to welcome Calymath:
Close your portcullis, charge your basilisks,
And as you profitably take up arms,
So now courageously encounter them;
For by this answer, broken is the league,
And naught is to be looked for now but wars,
And naught to us more welcome is than wars. [Exeunt.


Enter Friar JACOMO and Friar BARNARDINE.

F. Jac. O, brother, brother, all the nuns are sick,
And physic will not help them: they must die.
F. Barn. The abbess sent for me to be confessed:
O, what a sad confession will there be!
F. Jac. And so did fair Maria send for me:
I'll to her lodging: hereabouts she lies. [Exit.


F. Barn. What, all dead, save only Abigail?
Abig. And I shall die too, for I feel death coming.
Where is the friar that conversed with me?
F. Barn. O, he is gone to see the other nuns.
Abig. I sent for him, but seeing you are come,
Be you my ghostly father: and first know,
That in this house I lived religiously,
Chaste, and devout, much sorrowing for my sins;
But ere I came_____
F. Barn. What then?
Abig. I did offend high Heaven so grievously,
As I am almost desperate for my sins:
And one offence torments me more than all.
You knew Mathias and Don Lodowick?
F. Barn. Yes, what of them?
Abig. My father did contract me to 'em both:
First to Don Lodowick; him I never loved;
Mathias was the man that I held dear,
And for his sake did I become a nun.
F. Barn. So, say how was their end?
Abig. Both jealous of my love, envied each other,
And by my father's practice, which is there
Set down at large, the gallants were both slain.
[Gives a written paper.
F. Barn. O monstrous villainy!
Abig. To work my peace, this I confess to thee;
Reveal it not, for then my father dies.
F. Barn. Know that confession must not be revealed,
The canon law forbids it, and the priest
That makes it known, being degraded first,
Shall be condemned, and then sent to the fire.
Abig. So I have heard; pray, therefore keep it close.
Death seizeth on my heart: ah gentle friar,
Convert my father that he may be saved,
And witness that I die a Christian.
F. Barn. Ay, and a virgin too; that grieves me most:
But I must to the Jew and exclaim on him,
And make him stand in fear of me.

Re-enter Friar JACOMO.

F. Jac. O brother, all the nuns are dead, let's bury them.
F. Barn. First help to bury this, then go with me
And help me to exclaim against the Jew.
F. Jac. Why, what has he done?
F. Barn. A thing that makes me tremble to unfold.
F. Jac. What, has he crucified a child?
F. Barn. No, but a worse thing: 'twas told me in shrift,
Thou know'st 'tis death an if it be revealed.
Come, let's away. [Exeunt.



Enter BARABAS and ITHAMORE. Bells within.

BAR. There is no music to a Christian's knell:
How sweet the bells ring now the nuns are dead,
That sound at other times like tinker's pans!
I was afraid the poison had not wrought:
Or, though it wrought, it would have done no good,
For every year they swell, and yet they live;
Now all are dead, not one remains alive.
Itha. That's brave, master, but think you it will not be known?
Bar. How can it, if we two be secret?
Itha. For my part fear you not.
Bar. I'd cut thy throat if I did.
Itha. And reason too.
But here's a royal monastery hard by;
Good master, let me poison all the monks.
Bar. Thou shalt not need, for now the nuns are dead
They'll die with grief.
Itha. Do you not sorrow for your daughter's death?
Bar. No, but I grieve because she lived so long.
An Hebrew born, and would become a Christian! Cazzo, diabolo.

Enter Friar JACOMO and Friar BARNARDINE.

Itha. Look, look, master, here come two religious caterpillars.
Bar. I smelt 'em ere they came.
Itha. God-a-mercy, nose! come, let's begone.
F. Barn. Stay, wicked Jew, repent, I say, and stay.
F. Jac. Thou hast offended, therefore must be damned.
Bar. I fear they know we sent the poisoned broth.
Itha. And so do I, master; therefore speak 'em fair.
F. Barn. Barabas, thou hast_____
F. Jac. Ay, that thou hast_____
Bar. True, I have money, what though I have?
F. Barn. Thou art a_____
F. Jac. Ay, that thou art, a_____
Bar. What needs all this? I know I am a Jew.
F. Barn. Thy daughter_____
F. Jac. Ay, thy daughter_____
Bar. O speak not of her! then I die with grief.
F. Barn. Remember that_____
F. Jac. Ay, remember that_____
Bar. I must needs say that I have been a great usurer.
F. Barn. Thou hast committed_____
Bar. Fornication—but that was in another country;
And besides, the wench is dead.
F. Barn. Ay, but, Barabas,
Remember Mathias and Don Lodowick.
Bar. Why, what of them?
F. Barn. I will not say that by a forged challenge they met.
Bar. She has confest, and we are both undone,
My bosom inmate! but I must dissemble.— [Aside.
O holy friars, the burthen of my sins
Lie heavy on my soul; then pray you tell me,
Is't not too late now to turn Christian?
I have been zealous in the Jewish faith,
Hard-hearted to the poor, a covetous wretch,
That would for lucre's sake have sold my soul.
A hundred for a hundred I have ta'en;
And now for store of wealth may I compare
With all the Jews of Malta; but what is wealth?
I am a Jew, and therefore am I lost.
Would penance serve to atone for this my sin,
I could afford to whip myself to death_____
Itha. And so could I; but penance will not serve.
Bar. To fast, to pray, and wear a shirt of hair,
And on my knees creep to Jerusalem.
Cellars of wine, and sollars full of wheat,
Warehouses stuft with spices and with drugs,
Whole chests of gold, in bullion, and in coin,
Besides I know not how much weight in pearl,
Orient and round, have I within my house;
At Alexandria, merchandise unsold:
But yesterday two ships went from this town,
Their voyage will be worth ten thousand crowns.
In Florence, Venice, Antwerp, London, Seville,
Frankfort, Lubeck, Moscow, and where not,
Have I debts owing; and in most of these,
Great sums of money lying in the banco;
All this I'll give to some religious house.
So I may be baptized, and live therein.
F. Jac. O good Barabas, come to our house.
F. Barn. O no, good Barabas, come to our house;
And, Barabas, you know_____
Bar. I know that I have highly sinned.
You shall convert me, you shall have all my wealth.
F. Jac. O Barabas, their laws are strict.
Bar. I know they are, and I will be with you.
F. Barn. They wear no shirts, and they go barefoot too.
Bar. Then 'tis not for me; and I am resolved
You shall confess me, and have all my goods.
F. Jac. Good Barabas, come to me.
Bar. You see I answer him, and yet he stays;
Rid him away, and go you home with me.
F. Jac. I'll be with you to-night.
Bar. Come to my house at one o'clock this night.
F. Jac. You hear your answer, and you may be gone.
F. Barn. Why, go get you away.
F. Jac. I will not go for thee.
F. Barn. Not! then I'll make thee go.
F. Jac. How, dost call me rogue? [They fight.
Itha. Part'em, master, part'em.
Bar. This is mere frailty, brethren; be content.
Friar Barnardine, go you with Ithamore:
You know my mind, let me alone with him.
[Aside to F. BARNARDINE.
F. Jac. Why does he go to thy house? let him be gone.
Bar. I'll give him something and so stop his mouth.
I never heard of any man but he
Maligned the order of the Jacobins:
But do you think that I believe his words?
Why, brother, you converted Abigail;
And I am bound in charity to requite it,
And so I will. O Jacomo, fail not, but come.
F. Jac. But, Barabas, who shall be your godfathers?
For presently you shall be shrived.
Bar. Marry, the Turk shall be one of my godfathers,
But not a word to any of your covent.
F. Jac. I warrant thee, Barabas. [Exit.
Bar. So, now the fear is past, and I am safe,
For he that shrived her is within my house;
What if I murdered him ere Jacomo comes?
Now I have such a plot for both their lives
As never Jew nor Christian knew the like:
One turned my daughter, therefore he shall die;
The other knows enough to have my life,
Therefore 'tis not requisite he should live.
But are not both these wise men to suppose
That I will leave my house, my goods, and all,
To fast and be well whipt? I'll none of that.
Now Friar Barnardine I come to you,
I'll feast you, lodge you, give you fair words,
And after that, I and my trusty Turk—
No more, but so: it must and shall be done. [Exit.



Bar. Ithamore, tell me, is the friar asleep?
Itha. Yes; and I know not what the reason is,
Do what I can he will not strip himself,
Nor go to bed, but sleeps in his own clothes;
I fear me he mistrusts what we intend.
Bar. No, 'tis an order which the friars use:
Yet, if he knew our meanings, could he 'scape?
Itha. No, none can hear him, cry he ne'er so loud.
Bar. Why, true, therefore did I place him there:
The other chambers open towards the street.
Itha. You loiter, master; wherefore stay we thus?
O how I long to see him shake his heels.
Bar. Come on, sirrah.
Off with your girdle, make a handsome noose.
[ITHAMORE takes off his girdle and ties a noose in it.
Friar, awake! [They put the noose round the Friar's neck.
F. Barn. What, do you mean to strangle me?
Itha. Yes, 'cause you use to confess.
Bar. Blame not us but the proverb, Confess and be hanged; pull hard!
F. Barn. What, will you have my life?
Bar. Pull hard, I say; you would have had my goods.
Itha. Ay, and our lives too, therefore pull amain.
[They strangle him.
'Tis neatly done, sir, here's no print at all.
Bar. Then it is as it should be; take him up.
Itha. Nay, master, be ruled by me a little. [Stands the body
against the wall and puts a staff in its hand.]
So, let him lean upon his staff; excellent! he stands as if he were begging of
Bar. Who would not think but that this friar lived?
What time o' night is't now, sweet Ithamore?
Itha. Towards one.
Bar. Then will not Jacomo be long from hence.


Enter Friar JACOMO.

F. Jac. This is the hour wherein I shall proceed;
O happy hour wherein I shall convert
An infidel, and bring his gold into our treasury!
But soft, is not this Barnardine? it is;
And, understanding I should come this way,
Stands here a purpose, meaning me some wrong,
And intercept my going to the Jew.—
Wilt thou not speak? thou think'st I see thee not;
Away, I'd wish thee, and let me go by:
No, wilt thou not? nay, then, I'll force my way;
And see, a staff stands ready for the purpose:
As thou lik'st that, stop me another time.
[Takes the staff and strikes the body, which falls down.


Bar. Why, how now, Jacomo, what hast thou done?
F. Jac. Why, stricken him that would have struck at me.
Bar. Who is it? Barnardine! now out, alas, he's slain!
Itha. Ay, master, he's slain; look how his brains drop out on's nose.
F. Jac. Good sirs, I have done't, but nobody knows it but you
two—I may escape.
Bar. So might my man and I hang with you for company.
Itha. No, let us bear him to the magistrates.
F. Jac. Good Barabas, let me go.
Bar. No, pardon me; the law must have its course.
I must be forced to give in evidence,
That being importuned by this Barnardine
To be a Christian, I shut him out,
And there he sat: now I, to keep my word,
And give my goods and substance to your house,
Was up thus early; with intent to go
Unto your friary, because you stayed.
Itha. Fie upon 'em, master; will you turn Christian when holy friars
turn devils and murder one another?
Bar. No, for this example I'll remain a Jew:
Heaven bless me! what, a friar a murderer?
When shall you see a Jew commit the like?
Itha. Why, a Turk could ha' done no more.
Bar. To-morrow is the sessions; you shall to it.
Come, Ithamore, let's help to take him hence.
F. Jac. Villains, I am a sacred person; touch me net.
Bar. The law shall touch you, we'll but lead you, we:
'Las, I could weep at your calamity!
Take in the staff too, for that must be shown:
Law wills that each particular be known. [Exeunt.


Bell. Pilia-Borsa, did'st thou meet with Ithamore?
Pilia. I did.
Bell. And did'st thou deliver my letter?
Pilia. I did.
Bell. And what think'st thou? will he come?
Pilia. I think so, but yet I cannot tell; for at the reading of the
letter he looked like a man of another world.
Bell. Why so?
Pilia. That such a base slave as he should be saluted by such a tall
man as I am, from such a beautiful dame as you.
Bell. And what said he?
Pilia. Not a wise word, only gave me a nod, as who should say, "Is it
even so?" and so I left him, being driven to a non-plus at the critical aspect
of my terrible countenance.
Bell. And where didst meet him?
Pilia. Upon mine own freehold, within forty feet of the gallows,
conning his neck-verse, I take it, looking of a friar's execution, whom I
saluted with an old hempen proverb, Hoaie tibi, cras mihi, and so I left
to the mercy of the hangman: but the exercise being done, see where he comes.


Itha. I never knew a man take his death so patiently as this friar; he

was ready to leap off ere the halter was about his neck; and when the hangman
had put on his hempen tippet, he made such haste to his prayers, as if he had
had another cure to serve. Well, go whither he will, I'll be none of his
followers in haste: and, now I think on't, going to the execution, a fellow
me with a muschatoes like a raven's wing, and a dagger with a hilt like a
warming-pan, and he gave me a letter from one Madam Bellamira, saluting me in
such sort as if he had meant to make clean my boots with his lips; the effect
was, that I should come to her house. I wonder what the reason is; it may
be she
sees more in me than I can find in myself: for she writes further, that she
loves me ever since she saw me, and who would not requite such love?
Here's her
house, and here she comes, and now would I were gone; I am not worthy to look
upon her.
Pilia. This is the gentleman you writ to.
Itha. Gentleman! he flouts me; what gentry can be in a poor Turk of
tenpence? I'll be gone. [Aside.
Bell. Is't not a sweet-faced youth, Pilia?
Itha. Again, "sweet youth!" [Aside.]—Did not you, sir, bring
the sweet youth a letter?
Pilia. I did, sir, and from this gentlewoman, who, as myself, and the
rest of the family, stand or fall at your service.
Bell. Though woman's modesty should hale me back,
I can withold no longer; welcome, sweet love.
Itha. Now am I clean, or rather foully out of the way. [Aside.
Bell. Whither so soon?
Itha. I'll go steal some money from my master to make me handsome
[Aside].—Pray pardon me, I must go and see a ship discharged.
Bell. Canst thou be so unkind to leave me thus?
Pilia. An ye did but know how she loves you, sir!
Itha. Nay, I care not how much she loves me—
Sweet Bellamira, would I had my master's wealth for thy sake!
Pilia. And you can have it, sir, an if you please.
Itha. If 'twere above ground, I could and would have it; but he hides
and buries it up, as partridges do their eggs, under the earth.
Pilia. And is't not possible to find it out?
Itha. By no means possible.
Bell. What shall we do with this base villain then?
[Aside to PILIA-BORSA.
Pilia. Let me alone; do you but speak him fair.—
[Aside to her.
But sir you know some secrets of the Jew,
Which, if they were revealed, would do him harm.
Itha. Ay, and such as—Go to, no more! I'll make him send me half
he has, and glad he 'scapes so too. I'll write unto him; we'll have money
Pilia. Send for a hundred crowns at least.
Itha. Ten hundred thousand crowns. [Writing.]
"Master Barabas."
Pilia. Write not so submissively, but threatening him.
Itha. [writing] "Sirrah, Barabas, send me a hundred crowns."
Pilia. Put in two hundred at least.
Itha. [writing] "I charge thee send me three hundred by this
bearer, and this shall be your warrant: if you do not—no more, but so."
Pilia. Tell him you will confess.
Itha. [writing] "Otherwise I'll confess all."—Vanish, and
return in a twinkle.
Pilia. Let me alone; I'll use him in his kind.
[Exit PILIA-BORSA with the letter.
Itha. Hang him, Jew!
Bell. Now, gentle Ithamore, lie in my lap.—
Where are my maids? provide a running banquet;
Send to the merchant, bid him bring me silks,
Shall Ithamore, my love, go in such rags?
Itha. And bid the jeweller come hither too.
Bell. I have no husband, sweet; I'll marry thee.
Itha. Content: but we will leave this paltry land,
And sail from hence to Greece, to lovely Greece.
I'll be thy Jason, thou my golden fleece;
Where painted carpets o'er the meads are hurled,
And Bacchus' vineyards overspread the world;
Where woods and forests go in goodly green,
I'll be Adonis, thou shalt be Love's Queen.
The meads, the orchards, and the primrose-lanes,
Instead of sedge and reed, bear sugar-canes:
Thou in those groves, by Dis above,
Shalt live with me and be my love.
Bell. Whither will I not go with gentle Ithamore?


Itha. How now! hast thou the gold?
Pilia. Yes.
Itha. But came it freely? did the cow give down her milk freely?
Pilia. At reading of the letter, he stared and stamped and turned
aside. I took him by the beard, and looked upon him thus; told him he were
to send it; then he hugged and embraced me.
Itha. Rather for fear than love.
Pilia. Then, like a Jew, he laughed and jeered, and told me he
loved me
for your sake, and said what a faithful servant you had been.
Itha. The more villain he to keep me thus; here's goodly 'parel, is
there not?
Pilia. To conclude, he gave me ten crowns.
[Gives the money to ITHAMORE.
Itha. But ten? I'll not leave him worth a grey groat. Give me a ream
paper; we'll have a kingdom of gold for 't.
Pilia. Write for five hundred crowns.
Itha. [writing.] "Sirrah, Jew, as you love your life send me five
hundred crowns, and give the bearer one hundred.—" Tell him I must
Pilia. I warrant your worship shall have't.
Itha. And if he ask why I demand so much, tell him I scorn to write a
line under a hundred crowns.
Pilia. You'd make a rich poet, sir. I am gone. [Exit.
Itha. Take thou the money; spend it for my sake.
Bell. 'Tis not thy money, but thyself I weigh;
Thus Bellamira esteems of gold. [Throws it aside.
But thus of thee. [Kisses him.
Itha. That kiss again! she runs division of my lips.
What an eye she casts on me! It twinkles like a star.
Bell. Come, my dear love, let's in and sleep together.
Itha. O, that ten thousand nights were put in one, that we might
seven years together afore we wake!
Bell. Come, amorous wag, first banquet, and then sleep. [Exeunt.


Enter BARABAS, reading a letter.

Bar. "Barabas, send me three hundred crowns.—"
Plain Barabas! O, that wicked courtesan!
He was not wont to call me Barabas.
"Or else I will confess:" ay, there it goes:
But, if I get him, coupe de gorge for that.
He sent a shaggy tottered staring slave,
That when he speaks draws out his grisly beard,
And winds it twice or thrice about his ear;
Whose face has been a grindstone for men's swords;
His hands are hacked, some fingers cut quite off;
Who, when he speaks, grunts like a hog, and looks
Like one that is employed in catzerie
And crossbiting,—such a rogue
As is the husband to a hundred whores:
And I by him must send three hundred crowns!
Well, my hope is, he will not stay there still;
And when he comes: O, that he were but here!


Pilia. Jew, I must have more gold.
Bar. Why, want'st thou any of thy tale?
Pilia. No; but three hundred will not serve his turn.
Bar. Not serve his turn, sir?
Pilia. No, sir; and, therefore, I must have five hundred more.
Bar. I'll rather_____
Pilia. O good words, sir, and send it you were best! see, there's his
letter. [Gives letter.
Bar. Might he not as well come as send? pray bid him come and fetch
what he writes for you, ye shall have straight.
Pilia. Ay, and the rest too, or else_____
Bar. I must make this villain away. [Aside.
Please you dine with me, sir;—and you shall be most heartily poisoned.
Pilia. No, God-a-mercy. Shall I have these crowns?
Bar. I cannot do it, I have lost my keys.
Pilia. O, if that be all, I can pick ope your locks.
Bar. Or climb up to my counting-house window: you know my meaning.
Pilia. I know enough, and therefore talk not to me of your counting-
house. The gold! or know, Jew, it is in my power to hang thee.
Bar. I am betrayed.— [Aside.
'Tis not five hundred crowns that I esteem,
I am not moved at that: this angers me,
That he, who knows I love him as myself,
Should write in this imperious vein. Why, sir,
You know I have no child, and unto whom
Should I leave all but unto Ithamore?
Pilia. Here's many words, but no crowns: the crowns!
Bar. Commend me to him, sir, most humbly,
And unto your good mistress, as unknown.
Pilia. Speak, shall I have 'em, sir?
Bar. Sir, here they are.— [Gives money.
O, that I should part with so much gold! [Aside.
Here, take 'em, fellow, with as good a will_____
As I would see thee hanged [Aside]; O, love stops my breath:
Never man servant loved as I do Ithamore!
Pilia. I know it, sir.
Bar. Pray, when, sir, shall I see you at my house?
Pilia. Soon enough, to your cost, sir. Fare you well.
Bar. Nay, to thine own cost, villain, if thou com'st!
Was ever Jew tormented as I am?
To have a shag-rag knave to come, force from me
Three hundred crowns,—and then five hundred crowns!
Well, I must seek a means to rid 'em all,
And presently; for in his villainy
He will tell all he knows, and I shall die for't.
I have it:
I will in some disguise go see the slave,
And how the villain revels with my gold. [Exit.



Bell. I'll pledge thee, love, and therefore drink it off.
Itha. Say'st thou me so? have at it; and do you hear? [Whispers.
Bell. Go to, it shall be so.
Itha. Of that condition I will drink it up.
Here's to thee!
Bell. Nay, I'll have all or none.
Itha. There, if thou lov'st me do not leave a drop.
Bell. Love thee! fill me three glasses.
Itha. Three and fifty dozen, I'll pledge thee.
Pilia. Knavely spoke, and like a knight-at-arms.
Itha. Hey, Rivo Castiliano! a man's a man!
Bell. Now to the Jew.
Itha. Ha! to the Jew, and send me money he were best.
Pilia. What would'st thou do if he should send thee none?
Itha. Do nothing; but I know what I know; he's a murderer.
Bell. I had not thought he had been so brave a man.
Itha. You knew Mathias and the governor's son; he and I killed 'em
both, and yet never touched 'em.
Pilia. O, bravely done.
Itha. I carried the broth that poisoned the nuns; and he and I,
hand too fast, strangled a friar.
Bell. You two alone?
Itha. We two; and 'twas never known, nor never shall be for me.
Pilia. This shall with me unto the governor.
[Aside to BELLAMIRA.
Bell. And fit it should: but first let's ha' more gold,—
[Aside to PILIA-BORSA.
Come, gentle Ithamore, lie in my lap.
Itha. Love me little, love me long; let music rumble
Whilst I in thy incony lap do tumble.

Enter BARABAS, disguised as a French musician, with a lute, and a
in his hat.

Bell. A French musician! come, let's hear your skill.
Bar. Must tuna my lute for sound, twang, twang, first.
Itha. Wilt drink, Frenchman? here's to thee with a_____Pox on this
drunken hiccup!
Bar. Gramercy, monsieur.
Bell. Prythee, Pilia-Borsa, bid the fiddler give me the posy
in his hat
Pilia. Sirrah, you must give my mistress your posy.
Bar. A votre commandement, madame.
Bell. How sweet, my Ithamore, the flowers smell!
Itha. Like thy breath, sweetheart; no violet like 'em.
Pilia. Foh! methinks they stink like a hollyhock.
Bar. So, now I am revenged upon 'em all.
The scent thereof was death; I poisoned it. [Aside.
Itha. Play, fiddler, or I'll cut your cat's guts into chitterlings.
Bar. Pardonnez moi, be no in tune yet; so now, now all be in.
Itha. Give him a crown, and fill me out more wine.
Pilia. There's two crowns for thee; play.
Bar. How liberally the villain gives me mine own gold! [Aside.
BARABAS then plays.
Pilia. Methinks he fingers very well.
Bar. So did you when you stole my gold. [Aside.
Pilia. How swift he runs!
Bar. You run swifter when you threw my gold out of my window.
Bell. Musician, hast been in Malta long?
Bar. Two, three, four month, madame.
Itha. Dost not know a Jew, one Barabas?
Bar. Very mush; monsieur, you no be his man?
Pilia. His man?
Itha. I scorn the peasant; tell him so.
Bar. He knows it already. [Aside.
Itha. 'Tis a strange thing of that Jew, he lives upon pickled
grasshoppers and sauced mushrooms.
Bar. What a slave's this? the governor feeds not as I do. [Aside.
Itha. He never put on clean shirt since he was circumcised.
Bar. O rascal! I change myself twice a day. [Aside.
Itha. The hat he wears, Judas left under the elder when he hanged
Bar. 'Twas sent me for a present from the great Cham. [Aside.
Pilia. A musty slave he is;—Whither now, fiddler?
Bar. Pardonnez moi, monsieur, me be no well.
Pilia. Farewell, fiddler! [Exit BARABAS] one letter more to the
Bell. Prythee, sweet love, one more, and write it sharp.
Itha. No, I'll send by word of mouth now—Bid him deliver thee a
thousand crowns, by the same token, that the nuns loved rice, that Friar
Barnardine slept in his own clothes; any of 'em will do it.
Pilia. Let me alone to urge it, now I know the meaning.
Itha. The meaning has a meaning. Come let's in: To undo a Jew is
charity, and not sin. [Exeunt.



Enter FERNEZE, Knights, MARTIN DEL BOSCO, and Officers.

FERN. Now, gentlemen, betake you to your arms,
And see that Malta be well fortified;
And it behoves you to be resolute;
For Calymath, having hovered here so long,
Will win the town, or die before the walls.
1st Knight. And die he shall, for we will never yield.


Bell. O, bring us to the governor.
Fern. Away with her! she is a courtesan.
Bell. Whate'er I am, yet, governor, hear me speak;
I bring thee news by whom thy son was slain:
Mathias did it not; it was the Jew.
Pilia. Who, besides the slaughter of these gentlemen,
Poisoned his own daughter and the nuns,
Strangled a friar and I know not what
Mischief besides.
Fern. Had we but proof of this_____
Bell. Strong proof, my lord; his man's now at my lodging,
That was his agent; he'll confess it all.
Fern. Go fetch him straight [Exeunt Officers]. I always feared

Enter Officers with BARABAS and ITHAMORE.

Bar. I'll go alone; dogs! do not hale me thus.
Itha. Nor me neither, I cannot outrun you, constable:—
O my belly!
Bar. One dram of powder more had made all sure;
What a damned slave was I! [Aside.
Fern. Make fires, heat irons, let the rack be fetched.
1st Knight. Nay, stay, my lord; 't may be he will confess.
Bar. Confess! what mean you, lords? who should confess?
Fern. Thou and thy Turk; 'twas you that slew my son.
Itha. Guilty, my lord, I confess. Your son and Mathias were both
contracted unto Abigail; he forged a counterfeit challenge.
Bar. Who carried that challenge?
Itha. I carried it, I confess; but who writ it? Marry, even he that
strangled Barnardine, poisoned the nuns and his own daughter.
Fern. Away with him! his sight is death to me.
Bar. For what, you men of Malta? hear me speak:
She is a courtesan, and he a thief,
And he my bondman. Let me have law,
For none of this can prejudice my life.
Fern. Once more, away with him; you shall have law.
Bar. Devils, do your worst! I'll live in spite of you.
As these have spoke, so be it to their souls!—
I hope the poisoned flowers will work anon. [Aside.
[Exeunt Officers with BARABAS and ITHAMORE, BELLAMIRA


Kath. Was my Mathias murdered by the Jew?
Ferneze, 'twas thy son that murdered him.
Fern. Be patient, gentle madam, it was he;
He forged the daring challenge made them fight.
Kath. Where is the Jew? where is that murderer?
Fern. In prison till the law has passed on him.

Re-enter First Officer.

1st Off. My lord, the courtesan and her man are dead:
So is the Turk and Barabas the Jew.
Fern. Dead!
1st Off. Dead, my lord, and here they bring his body.
Bosco. This sudden death of his is very strange.

Re-enter Officers carrying BARABAS as dead.

Fern. Wonder not at it, sir, the Heavens are just;
Their deaths were like their lives, then think not of 'em.
Since they are dead, let them be burièd;
For the Jew's body, throw that o'er the walls,
To be a prey for vultures and wild beasts.—
So now away, and fortify the town.
[Exeunt all leaving BARABAS on the floor.


BARABAS discovered rising.

Bar. What, all alone? well fare, sleepy drink.
I'll be revenged on this accursèd town;
For by my means Calymath shall enter in.
I'll help to slay their children and their wives,
To fire the churches, pull their houses down,
Take my goods too, and seize upon my lands.
I hope to see the governor a slave,
And, rowing in a galley, whipt to death.

Enter CALYMATH, Bassoes, and Turks.

Caly. Whom have we here, a spy?
Bar. Yes, my good lord, one that can spy a place
Where you may enter, and surprise the town:
My name is Barabas: I am a Jew.
Caly. Art thou that Jew whose goods we heard were sold
For tribute-money?
Bar. The very same, my lord:
And since that time they have hired a slave, my man,
To accuse me of a thousand villanies:
I was imprisonèd, but 'scaped their hands.
Caly. Did'st break prison?
Bar. No, no;
I drank of poppy and cold mandrake juice:
And being asleep, belike they thought me dead,
And threw me o'er the walls: so, or how else,
The Jew is here, and rests at your command.
Caly. 'Twas bravely done: but tell me, Barabas,
Canst thou, as thou report'st, make Malta ours?
Bar. Fear not, my lord, for here against the sluice,
The rock is hollow, and of purpose digged,
To make a passage for the running streams
And common channels of the city.
Now, whilst you give assault unto the walls,
I'll lead five hundred soldiers through the vault,
And rise with them i' the middle of the town,
Open the gates for you to enter in;
And by this means the city is your own.
Caly. If this be true, I'll make thee governor.
Bar. And if it be not true, then let me die.
Caly. Thou'st doomed thyself. Assault it presently.


Alarums within. Enter CALYMATH, Bassoes, Turks, and
BARABAS, with FERNEZE and Knights prisoners.

Caly. Now vail your pride, you captive Christians,
And kneel for mercy to your conquering foe:
Now where's the hope you had of haughty Spain?
Ferneze, speak, had it not been much better
T'have kept thy promise than be thus surprised?
Fern. What should I say? We are captives and must yield.
Caly. Ay, villains, you must yield, and under Turkish yokes
Shall groaning bear the burden of our ire;
And, Barabas, as erst we promised thee,
For thy desert we make thee governor;
Use them at thy discretion.
Bar. Thanks, my lord.
Fern. O fatal day, to fall into the hands
Of such a traitor and unhallowed Jew!
What greater misery could Heaven inflict?
Caly. 'Tis our command: and, Barabas, we give
To guard thy person these our Janizaries:
Entreat them well, as we have usèd thee.
And now, brave bassoes, come, we'll walk about
The ruined town, and see the wreck we made:—
Farewell, brave Jew; farewell, great Barabas!
Bar. May all good fortune follow Calymath!
[Exeunt CALYMATH and Bassoes.
And now, as entrance to our safety,
To prison with the governor and these
Captains, his consorts and confederates.
Fern. O villain! Heaven will be revenged on thee.
[Exeunt Turks, with FERNEZE and Knights.
Bar. Away! no more; let him not trouble me.
Thus hast thou gotten, by thy policy,
No simple place, no small authority,
I now am governor of Malta; true,—
But Malta hates me, and, in hating me,
My life's in danger, and what boots it thee,
Poor Barabas, to be the governor,
Whenas thy life shall be at their command?
No, Barabas, this must be looked into;
And since by wrong thou got'st authority,
Maintain it bravely by firm policy,
At least unprofitably lose it not:
For he that liveth in authority,
And neither gets him friends, nor fills his bags,
Lives like the ass, that Æsop speaketh of,
That labours with a load of bread and wine,
And leaves it off to snap on thistle-tops:
But Barabas will be more circumspect.
Begin betimes; occasion's bald behind;
Slip not thine opportunity, for fear too late
Thou seek'st for much, but canst not compass it.—
Within here!

Enter FERNEZE, with a Guard.

Fern. My lord?
Bar. Ay, "lord;" thus slaves will learn.
Now, governor;—stand by there, wait within.
[Exeunt Guard
This is the reason that I sent for thee;
Thou seest thy life and Malta's happiness
Are at my arbitrement; and Barabas
At his discretion may dispose of both;
Now tell me, governor, and plainly too,
What think'st thou shall become of it and thee?
Fern. This, Barabas; since things are in thy power,
I see no reason but of Malta's wreck,
Nor hope of thee but extreme cruelty;
Nor fear I death, nor will I flatter thee.
Bar. Governor, good words; be not so furious.
Tis not thy life which can avail me aught;
Yet you do live, and live for me you shall:
And, as for Malta's ruin, think you not
'Twere slender policy for Barabas
To dispossess himself of such a place?
For sith, as once you said, 'tis in this isle,
In Malta here, that I have got my goods,
And in this city still have had success,
And now at length am grown your governor,
Yourselves shall see it shall not be forgot:
For, as a friend not known but in distress,
I'll rear up Malta, now remediless.
Fern. Will Barabas recover Malta's loss?
Will Barabas be good to Christians?
Bar. What wilt thou give me, governor, to procure
A dissolution of the slavish bands
Wherein the Turk hath yoked your land and you?
What will you give me if I render you
The life of Calymath, surprise his men
And in an outhouse of the city shut
His soldiers, till I have consumed 'em all with fire?
What will you give him that procureth this?
Fern. Do but bring this to pass which thou pretendest,
Deal truly with us as thou intimatest,
And I will send amongst the citizens,
And by my letters privately procure
Great sums of money for thy recompense:
Nay more, do this, and live thou governor still.
Bar. Nay, do thou this, Ferneze, and be free;
Governor, I enlarge thee; live with me,
Go walk about the city, see thy friends:
Tush, send not letters to 'em, go thyself,
And let me see what money thou canst make;
Here is my hand that I'll set malta free:
And thus we cast it: to a solemn feast
I will invite young Selim Calymath,
Where be thou present only to perform
One stratagem that I'll impart to thee,
Wherein no danger shall betide thy life,
And I will warrant Malta free for ever.
Fern. Here is my hand; believe me, Barabas,
I will be there, and do as thou desirest.
When is the time?
Bar. Governor, presently:
For Calymath, when he hath viewed the town,
Will take his leave and sail towards Ottoman.
Fern. Then will I, Barabas, about this coin,
And bring it with me to thee in the evening.
Bar. Do so, but fail not; now farewell, Ferneze!—
And thus far roundly goes the business:
Thus loving neither, will I live with both,
Making a profit of my policy;
And he from whom my most advantage comes
Shall be my friend.
This is the life we Jews are used to lead;
And reason too, for Christians do the like.
Well, now about effecting this device;
First to surprise great Selim's soldiers,
And then to make provision for the feast,
That at one instant all things may be done:
My policy detests prevention:
To what event my secret purpose drives,
I know; and they shall witness with their lives. [Exit.


Enter CALYMATH and Bassoes.

Caly. Thus have we viewed the city, seen the sack,
And caused the ruins to be new-repaired,
Which with our bombards' shot and basilisks
We rent in sunder at our entry:
And now I see the situation,
And how secure this conquered island stands
Environed with the Mediterranean Sea,
Strong-countermined with other petty isles;
And, toward Calabria, backed by Sicily,
(Where Syracusian Dionysius reigned,)
Two lofty turrets that command the town;
I wonder how it could be conquered thus.

Enter a Messenger.

Mess. From Barabas, Malta's governor, I bring
A message unto mighty Calymath;
Hearing his sovereign was bound for sea,
To sail to Turkey, to great Ottoman,
He humbly would entreat your majesty
To come and see his homely citadel,
And banquet with him ere thou leav'st the isle.
Caly. To banquet with him in his citadel?
I fear me, messenger, to feast my train
Within a town of war so lately pillaged,
Will be too costly and too troublesome:
Yet would I gladly visit Barabas,
For well has Barabas deserved of us.
Mess. Selim, for that, thus saith the governor,
That he hath in his store a pearl so big,
So precious, and withal so orient,
As, be it valued but indifferently,
The price thereof will serve to entertain
Selim and all his soldiers for a month;
Therefore he humbly would entreat your highness
Not to depart till he has feasted you.
Caly. I cannot feast my men in Malta-walls,
Except he place his tables in the streets,
Mess. Know, Selim, that there is a monastery
Which standeth as an outhouse to the town:
There will he banquet them; but thee at home,
With all thy bassoes and brave followers.
Caly. Well, tell the governor we grant his suit,
We'll in this summer evening feast with him.
Mess. I shall, my lord. [Exit.
Caly. And now, bold bassoes, let us to our tents,
And meditate how we may grace us best
To solemnize our governor's great feast. [Exeunt.



Fern. In this, my countrymen, be ruled by me,
Have special care that no man sally forth
Till you shall hear a culverin discharged
By him that bears the linstock, kindled thus;
Then issue out and come to rescue me,
For happily I shall be in distress,
Or you releasèd of this servitude.
1st Knight. Rather than thus to live as Turkish thralls,
What will we not adventure?
Fern. On then, begone.
Knights. Farewell, grave governor!
[Exeunt on one side Knights and MARTIN DEL BOSCO; on the
other FERNEZE.


Enter, above, BARABAS, with a hammer, very busy; and Carpenters.

Bar. How stand the cords? How hang these hinges? fast?
Are all the cranes and pulleys sure?
1st Carp. All fast.
Bar. Leave nothing loose, all levelled to my mind.
Why now I see that you have art indeed.
There, carpenters, divide that gold amongst you:
[Gives money.
Go swill in bowls of sack and muscadine!
Down to the cellar, taste of all my wines.
1st Carp. We shall, my lord, and thank you.
[Exeunt Carpenters.
Bar. And, if you like them, drink your fill and die:
For so I live, perish may all the world!
Now Selim Calymath return me word
That thou wilt come, and I am satisfied.

Enter Messenger.

Now, sirrah, what, will he come?
Mess. He will; and has commanded all his men
To come ashore, and march through Malta streets,
That thou mayest feast them in thy citadel.
Bar. Then now are all things as my wish would have 'em,
There wanteth nothing but the governor's pelf,
And see, he brings it.


Now, governor, the sum.
Fern. With free consent, a hundred thousand pounds.
Bar. Pounds say'st thou, governor? well, since it is no more,
I'll satisfy myself with that; nay, keep it still,
For if I keep not promise, trust not me.
And, governor, now partake my policy:
First, for his army; they are sent before,
Entered the monastery, and underneath
In several places are field-pieces pitched,
Bombards, whole barrels full of gunpowder
That on the sudden shall dissever it,
And batter all the stones about their ears,
Whence none can possibly escape alive.
Now as for Calymath and his consorts,
Here have I made a dainty gallery,
The floor whereof, this cable being cut,
Doth fall asunder; so that it doth sink
Into a deep pit past recovery.
Here, hold that knife [Throws down a knife], and when thou seest he comes,
And with his bassoes shall be blithely set,
A warning-piece shall be shot off from the tower,
To give thee knowledge when to cut the cord
And fire the house; say, will not this be brave?
Fern. O excellent! here, hold thee, Barabas,
I trust thy word, take what I promised thee.
Bar. No, governor, I'll satisfy thee first,
Thou shalt not live in doubt of anything.
Stand close, for here they come [FERNEZE retires]. Why, is not this
A kingly kind of trade to purchase towns
By treachery and sell 'em by deceit?
Now tell me, worldlings, underneath the sun
If greater falsehood ever has been done?

Enter CALYMATH and Bassoes.

Caly. Come, my companion bassoes; see, I pray,
How busy Barabas is there above
To entertain us in his gallery;
Let us salute him. Save thee, Barabas!
Bar. Welcome, great Calymath!
Fern. How the slave jeers at him. [Aside.
Bar. Will 't please thee, mighty Selim Calymath,
To ascend our homely stairs?
Caly. Ay, Barabas;—
Come, bassoes, ascend.
Fern. [coming forward]. Stay, Calymath!
For I will show thee greater courtesy
Than Barabas would have afforded thee.
Knight [within.] Sound a charge there!
[A charge sounded within. FERNEZE cuts the cord: the floor of
the gallery gives way, and BARABAS falls into a caldron.

Enter MARTIN DEL BOSCO and Knights.

Caly. How now! what means this?
Bar. Help, help me! Christians, help!
Fern. See, Calymath, this was devised for thee!
Caly. Treason! treason! bassoes, fly!
Fern. No, Selim, do not fly;
See his end first, and fly then if thou canst.
Bar. O help me, Selim! help me, Christians!
Governor, why stand you all so pitiless?
Fern. Should I in pity of thy plaints or thee,
Accursèd Barabas, base Jew, relent?
No, thus I'll see thy treachery repaid,
But wish thou hadst behaved thee otherwise.
Bar. You will not help me, then?
Fern. No, villain, no.
Bar. And, villains, know you cannot help me now.—
Then, Barabas, breathe forth thy latest hate,
And in the fury of thy torments strive
To end thy life with resolution.
Know, governor, 'twas I that slew thy son;
I framed the challenge that did make them meet:
Know, Calymath, I aimed thy overthrow,
And had I but escaped this stratagem,
I would have brought confusion on you all,
Damned Christian dogs! and Turkish infidels!
But now begins the extremity of heat
To pinch me with intolerable pangs:
Die, life! fly, soul! tongue, curse thy fill, and die! [Dies.
Caly. Tell me, you Christians, what doth this portend?
Fern. This train he laid to have entrapped thy life;
Now, Selim, note the unhallowed deeds of Jews:
Thus he determined to have handled thee,
But I have rather chose to save thy life.
Caly. Was this the banquet he prepared for us?
Let's hence, lest further mischief be pretended.
Fern. Nay, Selim, stay; for since we have thee here,
We will not let thee part so suddenly:
Besides, if we should let thee go, all's one,
For with thy galleys could'st thou not get hence,
Without fresh men to rig and furnish them.
Caly. Tush, governor, take thou no care for that,
My men are all aboard,
And do attend my coming there by this.
Fern. Why heard'st thou not the trumpet sound a charge?
Caly. Yes, what of that?
Fern. Why then the house was fired,
Blown up, and all thy soldiers massacred.
Caly. O monstrous treason!
Fern. A Jew's courtesy:
For he that did by treason work our fall,
By treason hath delivered thee to us:
Know, therefore, till thy father hath made good
The ruins done to Malta and to us,
Thou canst not part; for Malta shall be freed,
Or Selim ne'er return to Ottoman.
Caly. Nay, rather, Christians, let me go to Turkey,
In person there to meditate your peace;
To keep me here will not advantage you.
Fern. Content thee, Calymath, here thou must stay,
And live in Malta prisoner; for come all the world
To rescue thee, so will we guard us now,
As sooner shall they drink the ocean dry
Than conquer Malta, or endanger us.
So march away, and let due praise be given
Neither to Fate nor Fortune, but to Heaven. [Exeunt.

Other Poems of Interest...

Home: PoetryExplorer.net