Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Not Peer Reviewed

Titus Andronicus (Folio, 1623)


The Tragedie of Titus Andronicus.
33
What should I d'on this Robe and trouble you,
Be chosen with proclamations to day,
220To morrow yeeld vp rule, resigne my life,
And set abroad new businesse for you all.
Rome I haue bene thy Souldier forty yeares,
And led my Countries strength successefully,
And buried one and twenty Valiant Sonnes,
225Knighted in Field, slaine manfully in Armes,
In right and Seruice of their Noble Countrie:
Giue me a staffe of Honour for mine age,
But not a Scepter to controule the world,
Vpright he held it Lords, that held it last.
230Mar. Titus, thou shalt obtaine and aske the Emperie.
Sat. Proud and ambitious Tribune can'st thou tell?
Titus. Patience Prince Saturninus.
Sat. Romaines do me right.
Patricians draw your Swords, and sheath them not
235Till Saturninus be Romes Emperour:
Andronicus would thou wert shipt to hell,
Rather then rob me of the peoples harts.
Luc. Proud Saturnine, interrupter of the good
That Noble minded Titus meanes to thee.
240Tit. Content thee Prince, I will restore to thee
The peoples harts, and weane them from themselues.
Bass. Andronicus, I do not flatter thee
But Honour thee, and will doe till I die:
My Faction if thou strengthen with thy Friend?
245I will most thankefull be, and thankes to men
Of Noble mindes, is Honourable Meede.
Tit. People of Rome, and Noble Tribunes heere,
I aske your voyces and your Suffrages,
Will you bestow them friendly on Andronicus?
250Tribunes. To gratifie the good Andronicus,
And Gratulate his safe returne to Rome,
The people will accept whom he admits.
Tit. Tribunes I thanke you, and this sure I make,
That you Create your Emperours eldest sonne,
255Lord Saturnine, whose Vertues will I hope,
Reflect on Rome as Tytans Rayes on earth,
And ripen Iustice in this Common-weale:
Then if you will elect by my aduise,
Crowne him, and say: Long liue our Emperour.
260Mar. An. With Voyces and applause of euery sort,
Patricians and Plebeans we Create
Lord Saturninus Romes Great Emperour.
And say, Long liue our Emperour Saturnine.
A long Flourish till they come downe.
265Satu. Titus Andronicus, for thy Fauours done,
To vs in our Election this day,
I giue thee thankes in part of thy Deserts,
And will with Deeds requite thy gentlenesse:
And for an Onset Titus to aduance
270Thy Name, and Honorable Familie,
Lauinia will I make my Empresse,
Romes Royall Mistris, Mistris of my hart
And in the Sacred Pathan her espouse:
Tell me Andronicus doth this motion please thee?
275Tit. It doth my worthy Lord, and in this match,
I hold me Highly Honoured of your Grace,
And heere in sight of Rome, to Saturnine,
King and Commander of our Common-weale,
The Wide-worlds Emperour, do I Consecrate,
280My Sword, my Chariot, and my Prisonerss,
Presents well Worthy Romes Imperiall Lord:
Receiue them then, the Tribute that I owe,
Mine Honours Ensignes humbled at my feete.
Satu. Thankes Noble Titus, Father of my life,
285How proud I am of thee, and of thy gifts
Rome shall record, and when I do forget
The least of these vnspeakable Deserts,
Romans forget your Fealtie to me.
Tit. Now Madam are your prisoner to an Emperour,
290To him that for you Honour and your State,
Will vse you Nobly and your followers.
Satu. A goodly Lady, trust me of the Hue
That I would choose, were I to choose a new:
Cleere vp Faire Queene that cloudy countenance,
295Though chance of warre
Hath wrought this change of cheere,
Thou com'st not to be made a scorne in Rome:
Princely shall be thy vsage euery way.
Rest on my word, and let not discontent
300Daunt all your hopes: Madam he comforts you,
Can make your Greater then the Queene of Gothes?
Lauinia you are not displeas'd with this?
Lau. Not I my Lord, sith true Nobilitie,
Warrants these words in Princely curtesie.
305Sat. Thankes sweete Lauinia, Romans let vs goe:
Ransomlesse heere we set our Prisoners free,
Proclaime our Honors Lords with Trumpe and Drum.
Bass. Lord Titus by your leaue, this Maid is mine.
Tit. How sir? Are you in earnest then my Lord?
310Bass. I Noble Titus, and resolu'd withall,
To doe my selfe this reason, and this right.
Marc. Suum cuiquam, is our Romane Iustice,
This Prince in Iustice ceazeth but his owne.
Luc. And that he will and shall, if Lucius liue.
315Tit. Traytors auant, where is the Emperours Guarde?
Treason my Lord, Lauinia is surpris'd.
Sat. Surpris'd, by whom?
Bass. By him that iustly may
Beare his Betroth'd, from all the world away.
320Muti. Brothers helpe to conuey her hence away,
And with my Sword Ile keepe this doore safe.
Tit. Follow my Lord, and Ile soone bring her backe.
Mut. My Lord you passe not heere.
Tit. What villaine Boy, bar'st me my way in Rome?
325Mut. Helpe Lucius helpe.
He kils him
Luc. My Lord you are vniust, and more then so,
In wrongfull quarrell, you haue slaine your son.
Tit. Nor thou, nor he are any sonnes of mine,
My sonnes would neuer so dishonour me.
330Traytor restore Lauinia to the Emperour.
Luc. Dead if you will, but not to be his wife,
That is anothers lawfull promist Loue.
Enter aloft the Emperour with Tamora and her two
sonnes, and Aaron the Moore.
335Empe. No Titus, no, the Emperour needs her not,
Nor her, nor thee, nor any of thy stocke:
Ile trust by Leisure him that mocks me once.
Thee neuer: nor thy Trayterous haughty sonnes,
Confederates all, thus to dishonour me.
340Was none in Rome to make a stale
But Saturnine? Full well Andronicus
Agree these Deeds, with that proud bragge of thine,
That said'st, I beg'd the Empire at thy hands.
Tit. O monstrous, what reproachfull words are these?
345Sat. But goe thy wayes, goe giue that changing peece,
To him that flourisht for her with his Sword:
A Valliant sonne in-law thou shalt enioy:
One, fit to bandy with thy lawlesse Sonnes,
To