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  • Title: The Tragedy of Locrine (Third Folio, 1664)

  • Copyright Digital Renaissance Editions. This text may be freely used for educational, non-profit purposes; for all other uses contact the Editor.
    Authors: Anonymous, William Shakespeare
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    The Tragedy of Locrine (Third Folio, 1664)

    The Tragedy of Locrine.
    Deny thy cheerfull light unto the world,
    Where nothing reigns but falshood and deceit.
    What said I, falshood? I, that filthy crime,
    1890For Locrine hath forsaken Guendoline.
    Behold the heavens do wail for Guendoline:
    The shining sun doth blush for Guendoline:
    The liquid air doth weep for Guendoline:
    The very ground doth groan for Guendoline.
    1895I, they are milder then the Britain King,
    For he rejecteth luckless Guendoline.
    Thra. Sister, complaints are bootless in this cause,
    This open wrong must have an open plague:
    This plague must be repaid with grievous war,
    1900This war must finish with Locrinus death,
    His death will soon extinguish our complaints.
    Guen. O no, his death will more augment my woes,
    He was my husband, brave Thrasimacus,
    More dear to me then the apple of mine eye,
    1905Nor can I find in heart to work his scathe.
    Thra. Madam, if not your proper injuries,
    Nor my exile, can move you to revenge:
    Think on our father Corineus words,
    His words to us stand alwayes for a Law.
    1910Should Locrine live that caus'd my fathers death?
    Should Locrine live that now divorceth you?
    The heavens, the earth, the air, the fire reclaims;
    And then why should all we deny the same?
    Guen. Then henceforth farewell womanish complaints,
    1915All childish pitty henceforth then farewell:
    But cursed Locrine look unto thy self,
    For Nemesis the mistresse of Revenge,
    Sits arm'd at all points on our dismal blades,
    And cursed Estrild that inflam'd his heart,
    1920Shall if I live, die a reproachfull death.
    Madan. Mother, though nature makes me to lament
    My luckless fathers froward lechery;
    Yet for he wrongs my Lady mother, thus,
    I, if I could, my self would work his death.
    1925Thra. See Madam, see, the desire of revenge
    Is in the children of a tender age.
    Forward, brave souldiers, into Mertia,
    Where we shall brave the coward to his face.Exeunt.

    Scena Quarta.

    1930Enter Locrine, Estrild, Habren, Assarachus, and
    the Souldiers.
    Locr. Tell me, Assaracus, are the Cornish chuffes
    In such great number come to Mertia,
    And have they pitched there their host,
    1935So close unto our Royal mansion?
    Assa. They are, my Lord, and mean incontinent
    To bid defiance to your Majesty.
    Locr. It makes me laugh, to think that Guendoline
    Should have the heart to come in armes 'gainst me.
    1940Estr. Alas, my Lord, the horse will run amain
    When as the spur doth gall him to the bone;
    Jealousie, Locrine, hath a wicked sting.
    Locr. Sayst thou so, Estrild, Beauties paragon?
    Well, we will try her choler to the proof,
    1945And make her know, Locrine can brook no braves.
    March on, Assarachus, thou must lead the way,
    And bring us to their proud pavillion.Exeunt.
    Scena Quinta.

    Enter the Ghost of Corineus, with thunder & lightning.

    1950Ghost. Behold, the circuit of the azure sky
    Throws forth sad throbs, and grievous suspirs,
    Prejudicating Locrine's overthrow:
    The fire casteth forth sharp darts of flames,
    The great foundation of the triple world
    1955Trembleth and quaketh with a mighty noise,
    Presaging bloudy massacres at hand.
    The wandring birds that flutter in the dark,
    When hellish night in cloudie chariot seated,
    Casteth her mists on shadie Tellus face,
    1960With sable mantles covering all the earth,
    Now flies abroad amid the cheerfull day,
    Foretelling some unwonted misery.
    The snarling curres of darkned Tartarus,
    Sent from Avernus ponds by Radamanth,
    1965With howling ditties pester every wood;
    The watrie Ladies and the lightfoot Fawns,
    And all the rabble of the woodie Nymphs,
    All trembling hide themselves in shadie groves,
    And shrowd themselves in hideous hollow pits.
    1970The boysterous Boreas thundreth forth revenge:
    The stonie rocks cry out on sharp revenge:
    The thornie bush pronounceth dire revenge.
    Sound the alarme.
    Now Corineus stay and see revenge,
    1975 And feed thy soul with Locrine's overthrow,
    Behold they come, the Trumpets call them forth:
    The roaring drumms summon the souldiers.
    Loe where their army glistereth on the plains.
    Throw forth thy lightning, mighty Jupiter,
    1980And pour thy plagues on cursed Locrine's head.
    Stand aside.

    Enter Locrine, Estrild, Assaracus, Habren and their
    souldiers at one door, Thrasimachus, Guendoline, Ma-
    dan and their followers at another.

    1985Loc. What is the Tygre started from his cave?
    Is Guendoline come from Cornubia,
    That thus she braveth Locrine to the teeth?
    And hast thou found thine armour, pretty boy,
    Accompanied with these thy stragling mates?
    1990Believe me but this enterprise was bold,
    And well deserveth commendation.
    Guen. I Locrine, trairerous Locrine, we are come,
    With full pretence to seek thine overthrow:
    What have I done that thou should'st scorn me thus?
    1995What have I said that thou should'st me reject?
    Have I been disobedient to thy words?
    Have I bewray'd thy arcane secrecie?
    Have I dishonoured thy marriage bed
    With filthy crimes, or with lascivious lusts?
    2000Nay it is thou that hast dishonoured it,
    Thy filthy mind orecome with filthy lusts,
    Yieldeth unto affections filthy darts.
    Unkind, thou wrong'st thy first and truest feer,
    Unkind, thou wrong'st thy best and dearest friend;
    2005Unkind, thou scorn'st all skilfull Brutus lawes,