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The Argument. Peleus, in love with Thetis, by the aflistance of Proteus obtains her favour; but Jupiter interposing,
Peleus in despair consults Prometheus, famous for his skill in astrology ; upon whole prophecy, that the son born of Thetis should prove greater than his father, Jupiter defifts. The prophecy was afterwards vérified in the birth of Achilles, the son of Pelcus.
PERSONS IN THE MASQUE.
The Scene represents Mount Caucasus; Prometheus appears chain'd to a rock, a vulture gnawing bis breast.
Peleus enters, addreling himself to Prometbuus.
Peleus. Condemnd on Caucasus to lie,
Still to be dying, not to die, With certain pain, uncertain of relief, True emblem of a wretched lover's grief! To whose inspecting eye 'tis given
To view the planetary way,
To penetrate eternal day,
'Thetis is Jove's, who once was thine : *Tis vain, o Peleus, to oppose
Thy torturer, and mine.
Could you divine what lovers bear,
Thetis entering, they repeat together:
Thetis, Peleus, unjustly you complain.
Prometheus and Pcieuse Cease, cruel vulturc, to devour, cafe, cruel Thetis, to disdain,
The gods, alas! no refuge find
To sigh and coniplain,
Yet I so prize thy love,
Rather than reign with juve.
on bis Eagle.
Tremble Peleus, tremble, fly;
Trenible, Peleus, tremble, fly.
O E M S.
pas The thunderer! the mighty.thunderer!
Jove consenting she is thine; Tremble, Peleus, trenble, fly.
The fatal blelling I relign. (Foins their bands.
Heav'n had been lost, had I been Jove,
There is no heao'n, there is no heav'n but loves How dar'lt thou, mortal, thus defy
Peleus and Tbetis togetber. A goddess with audacious love,
There is no heav'n but love,
No, no, no,
There is no heav'n but love.
Jupiter to Prometbeus,
And thou, the Itars interpreter,
'fis just I let thee free,
Who giv'l me liberty :
Arise, and be thy self a star.
*Tis juft I set thee free, Jove, lay thy thunder down;
Who giv'it me liberty. Aro'd with love, and Thetis by,
[The Vulture drops dead at the feet of Prometbess, Fig There is more terror in her frown,
chains fall off, and be is borne up to heaven with Tea And fiercer light'ning in her eye:
piter to a loud Aourist of all tbe inffruments.
[Peleus and Thetis run into each others arms But Jove himself defy.
Fly, fly to my arms, to my arms,
Goddess of immortal charms! Hafte, ye Cyclops, with your forked rods, To my arms, to my arms, fiy, fly. This rebel love braves all the gods.
Goddess of transporting joy! Bring me light'ning, give me thunder.
But to gaze [Peleus and Thetis holding fast by one another.
On thy face,
Thy gentle hand thus presling,
Is heavenly, heavenly blessing.
O my soul!
Whither, whither art thou flying?
Loft in sweet tumultuous.dying,
Whither, whither art thou flying,
O my foul ! Is dreadful as thy haie:
Tbetir. O might it prove to me,
You tremble, Peleus-So do I-So gentle Peleus were but free;
Ah Itay! and we'll together div. O might it prove to me
Immortal, and of race divine, As fatal as to lost consuming Semele!
My soul shall take its flight with thioc: Thy love fill arm'd with fate,
Life diffolving in delight,
Heaving brcait, and swimming fight,
Falt'ring speech, and gasping breath,
Syniptoms of delicious death, From one whoni thy fevere decree
Life diffolving in delight, Has furnish'd leisure to grow wife:
My soul is ready for the flight. Thou rul't the gods, but fate rules thee.
O my soul, [Tbe Propbecy.)
Whither, whither art thou flying? Whoe'er th' inimorcal maid compreffiog, Loft in sweet tumultuous dyiog, Shall caste joy, and reap the blelling,
Whither, whither art chou flying, Thus th' unerring stars' advise:
O my soul! From that auspicious night an heir shall rife,
Pe!ews and Thetis, both togetber repeat; Paternal glories to efface
0.my foul ! The most illustrious of his rase,
Whither, whither art thou flying?
Loft in sweet tumultuous dying,
Whither, whither art thou flying,
foul! Like Saturn, by an impious fon?
Cborus of all tle voices and instruments finging and Jultly th' impartial faces conspire,
dancing. Dooming that son to be the fire
When the storm is blown over,
Ilow bleft is the swain,
Who begins to discover
An end of his pain !
When the storm, &c.
THE BRITISH ENCHANTERS:
NO MAGIC LIKE LOVE,
A DRAMATIC POEM.
With Scenes, Machines, Music, and Decorations,
Or all public spectacles, that which should pro-1 It is incumbent upon the poet alone to provide j'erly be calleil an OMERA, is calculated to give for that, in the choice in his fable, the conduct right the highest delight. There is hardly any art but his plot, the harmony of his numbers, the eleva. what is required to furnish towards the entertain-tion of his sentiments, and the juftness of his cha. ment; and there is something or other to be pro-racters. In tliis cuu hits the solid and the subvided that may touch cvery sensi, and plcuic every Itantial. palate.
The nature of this entertainment requires the The poet has a two-fold talk upon his hands in plot to be formed upin tone story in which enthe dramatic, and the lyric: chi architect, the chanters and magicians have a priocipal part: in painter, the conpoler, the actor, the singer, the our modern lcroic pocnis, they supply the place dancer, &c. have each of them their leveral cni- of the gods with the ancients, and make a n.uch goloyments in the preparation, and in the execu- more natural appearance by being mortals, with Lion.
the difference only of being endowed with superThe same materials indeed, in different hoods, natural power, will have diffcrent fuccefs; all depends upon a
The charadicrs should be great and iliustrious; Skilful mixture of the various ingredients : a bad the figure the actor makes upon the llage, is one artist will make but a mere hudge podge with tlie part of the organiet; by consequence the fentie samo niaterials that onc of a good taste fall pre- nients must be suitable to the characters in which pare an excellent olio.
love and honour will have the principal share. The seasoning mast be sense; unless there is The dialogue, which in the French and Italian ta'lierewithal en please the understanding, the eye is set to notes, and fung, I would have pronouncand the ear will loon arow tired.
if the numbers are of themselves harmonious, The French Opera is perfect in the decorations, there will be no need of music to set them off; a the dancing, and magnificence; the italian exccls good verse, well pronounced, is in itself musical; in the mulic and voices; but the drama falls ihurt -and speech is certainly more natural for discourse, in both.
than linging. An English stomach requires something folid Can anything be more preposterous than to be and substantial, and will rise hungry from a rcgale .old Cato, Julius Cæfar, and Akxander the Great, of nothing but swect-neats.
flrutring upon the stage in the figure of fongitors, Ar. Opera is a kind of ambigu : the table is personated by Eunuchs ? finely illuminated, adorned with flowers and fruits, The fingirip, therelore, should be wholly applied and every thing that the season affordis fragrant to the lyrical part of the antertainment, which by or delightful to the eye or the odour ; but unless being freed from a tircfome, unnatural recitative there is something ino for the appetite, ’tis odds must certainly adminiter more [casonablc plcabut the gucks break 07 diftatisficd.
THE PREFACE. T'he feveral parts of the entertainment faculd, though it is always adviseable to keep as close to he fr suited to relieve one another, as to be tedi- then as polible, but reformations are not to be ous in none; and the connection should be such, brought about all at once. that not one should be able to fubfift without the It may happen that the nature of certain subother; like embroidery, fo fist and wrought into jects proper for moving the pasions, may require the substance, that no part of the ornanient could a litele niore latitude, and then, withour office be removed, without tearing the stufi.
to the critics, sure there may be room for a saving To iraroduce singing and dancing, by head and in equiry from the severity of the conimon law vi shoulders, no way relative to the action, does not Parnallus, as well as of the King's Bench. To turn a play into an opera; though that title is facrifice a principal beauty, upon which the success now promiscuously given to every farce Sprinkled of the whole may depend, is being too frictly here and there with a song and a dance.
tied down; in such a case, sunimum jus may be The richeid lace, ridiculously set on, will make summa injuriz. but a fool's coat.
Corneille himself complains of finding his geI will not take upon me to criticise what has nius of:en cramped by his own rules : “ There is appeared of this kind on the English flage: we infinite difference í says he) between speculation have several poems under the name of Dramatic " and practice : Let the severeit critic make the Operas by the best hands; but, in my opinion, the “ trial, he will be convinced by his own espesubjects for the most part have been improperly " riencü, that upon certain occasions too strict an choren; Mr. Aldison's Rofamond, and Mr. Con- " adherence to the letter of the law, thall exclude greve's Semcle, though excellent in their kind, are a bright opportunity of thining, or touching ih
the rather mafgues than operas.
“ pasiūns. Where the breach is of little moAs I cannot help being concerned for the ho- mens, or can be contrived to be as it were imnour of my country, even in the minutest things, perceptible in the représenration, a gentle difI am for endeavouring to out-do our neighbours “ pensation night be allowed.” To those litile in performances of all kinds.
freedoms, be attributes the fuccess of his Cid: Thus, if the splendour of the French Opera, and But the rigid legislarors of the acadiny handled the harmony of the Italian, were so kilfully in- him fi roughly for it, that he never durt niake terwoven with the charms of poetry, upon a re- the venture again, nor pone who have followed gular dramatic bottom, as to instruct, as well as hini. Thus picioned, the Frenci mufe muti al.. delight, to improve the mind, as well as ravish ways flutter, like a bird with the wings cui, inca. the sense, there can be no doubt but such an ad- pable of a lofty fiight. dition would entitle our English opera to the pre- The dialogue of their tragedies is under the ference of all others. The third part of the en fame constraint as the contruction; not a dila couragement, of which we have becn fo liberal to course, but an oration; not speaking, but declaimforeigners for a confort of music only, mil-call'd ing; not free, natural, and easy, as conversation an opera, would more than effect it.
should be, but precise, fet, formai argumenring, In the construction of the following poem, che
like disputants in a school. In writauthor has endeavoured to set an example to hising, like dress, is it not poflible to be too exact, rules; precepts are best explained by examples; too starched, and too formal? Plealing neglian abler hand might have executed it better. | gence I have seen : Who ever faw plealing forHowever, it may serve for a model to be in- malisy? proved upon, when we grow weary of scenes of In a word, all extremes are to be avoided. To low life, and recura to a taste of more generous be a French puritan in the dram3, or an English pleasures.
latitudinarian, is taking different paths to be both We are reproached by foreigoers with such un- out of the road. If the Britilli iute is too unruly, natural irregularities in our dramatic pieces, as the French is too tame; one wants a curs, the are shocking to all other nations; even a Swiss has
other a spur. played the critic upon us, without conlidering By pleading for some little relaxation from the they are as little approved by the judicious in our utmost severity of the rules, where the subject may own. A stranger who is ignorant of the language, seem to require it, I am nui bespeaking any luch and incapable of judging of the sentimenis, con- indulgence for the prelent performance : Though demns by the eye, and concludes what he hears the ancients have left us no pattern to follow of to be as extravagant as what he sees: When this species of tragedy, I perceive, upon camilaædipus breaks his neck out of a balcony, and Jo- tion, that I have been attentive to their Itrictedt catta appears in her bed, murdering herself and effuns. her children, instead of moving terror, or con- The unities are religiously obferred: The place passion, such spectacles only fill the spectator with is the fame, varied only into different prospects by horror : No wonder if trangers are shocked at the power of enchantment: All the incidents fail such fights, and conclude us a nation hardly yet naturally within the very time of representation : civilized, that can seem to delight in them. To The plot is one principal action, and of chat kind remove this reproach, 'ic is much to be wished our which intruduces variety of turns and charges, all scenes were less bloody, and the sword and dagger tending the same point : l'he ornaments and more out of fashion. To make some amends for decorations are of a picce with it, so thar one this exclusion, I would be lefs severe as to the could not well subiit without the other : Every: igour of fume other lan's enacted by the martuis, oc? concludes with some unexpected revolution :
And in the end, zice is punished, virtue rewarded,
To conclude. This dramatic atempt was ttic and the moral is instructive.
first eslay of a very infunt mufe, rather as a talk Rhyme, which I would by no means admit into at such hours as were fiee from such other extrthe dialogue of graver tragedy, seems to me the cises, thon any way meant for public entertainjnost proper Nyle for reprelentations of this heroic ment: But Mr Bettescon having had a casual romantic kind, and heit adapted to accompany sight of į many years after it was written, begged music. The folemn language of a hanghủy tyrant it for the stage, where it found fą favourable a will by no means become a paffionate lyver, and reception, as to have an uninterrupted run of at tender sentiments require the softest colouring. Icast forry days. The separation of che principal
The theme nuust govern the style; every thought, alors which soon followed ; and the introduction every character, every fabject of a different na- of the įralian Opera, put a stop to its farther apture, mult speak a different language. An humble pearance. Jover's gentle address to his miilrels would rumble Had it been composed at a riper time of life, Itrangely in the Miltonic dialed; and the fofthe faulis nright have been fewer: However, up: harmony of Mr. Waller's numbers would as ilļon revising it now, at fo gicat a distance of time, become the mouths rif Lucifer aid Breizebub, with a comer judgment than the lirit conceprions The terrible, and the tender, must be set to differ- of youth will allow, I canliot absolutely fay, Juripe ent notes of mulic.
M E N.
W O M E N. CELIUS, O Britifs King, Father In ORIANA. CONSTANTIUS, a Roman Emperur, dejinned for Mar-Oriana, in Love wit! AMADIS, lut given in Mar, riage with OHIANA,
riage to CONSTANTIUS. Amants of Gaul, a famous Knight Adventurer, in Curisanda, betrotied to FLORESTAN. Love with ORIANA.
URGANDA, a good kinchantreji, Friend to MADIS. FT.0RESTAN, his Companion , in Locve wit) ConisANDA. ARCABON, Sijier to ARCALAUS. ARCALAUS, a wicked Enchanter, Enemy to 'Amadis. DELTA, an Attendunt 10 URGANDA. Lucius, 2 Roman of the Emperor's Train.
Tromps of Díagicians attending the livera! Enchanters. Knights and Ladies, Captizes. Men and It'omenartending the British Court. °Prichs, or Druids. Romanis uttending Contlantius. Singers, Dancers, &c.
NE the King's Palace, and Parts adjacent, inbabited by the different Enchanters.
ACT 1. SCENE T.
Delia. The Curtain rises to a symphony of all sorts of in
Successful is our charm : the temple Makes, Strunicuts of Music, The Scene reprelenes an
The aliar innds, ch' astonish'd priest forsakes enchanted Grove, adorned and beautified with The hallow'd fhrine, ttaris droni the bridegroom's Fountains, beatues, &c.
Breaks off the sites, and leaves the knot unry'd. URGANDA and Dera performing some solemn werk
Ye sweet musicians of the sky,
Hither, lijther, hither, fly, fly,
And with enchanting notes all magic else supply. URGANDA AND DELI..
Urgonia and Delia retire dorinthic Scene, craving
ibeir enchanted Rods, as continuing ine Ceresnony's Uganda. or-p, found, ye viacs, the rended clonds divide, Tiul! Chorns of Infiruments 'anat. Voiccs. l'right back the pricit, and save a trembling Sound the trumpet, touch the lute, hride,
Sarike the lyre, inipire the slute; Anin an injur'd lovar's faithful love :
Io harmony', An injur'd lover's causc is worthy Jovca