Imágenes de páginas
PDF
EPUB
[graphic][subsumed][merged small]

still worse than he did on the stage. But I have never known a good actor who did not also possess enough of the power of mimickry to show that it was his own fault he had not acquired it in still greater perfection. Garrick, I have been told by some of his acquaintance, frequently amused his friends with portraits of individual character incomparably finer and more faithful than any that were ever executed by Foote.

266.--ARTEGAL AND THE GIANT.

SPENSER.
They saw before them, far as they could view,
Full many people gathered in a crew;
Whose great assembly they did much admire ;

For never there the like resort they knew.
· So towards them they coasted, to enquire
What thing so many nations met did there desire.
There they beheld a mighty Giant stand

Upon a rock, and holding forth on high
An huge great pair of balance in his hand,
With which he boasted in his surquedrie *
That all the world he would weigh equally
If ought he had the same to counterpoise :
For want whereof he weighed vanity,

And fill'd his balance full of idle toys:
Yet was admired much of fools, women, and boys.
He said that he would all the earth uptake

And all the sea, divided each from either:
So would he of the fire one balance make,
And one of air, without or wind or weather;
Then would he balance heaven and hell together,
And all that did within them all contain;
Of all whose weight he would not miss a feather:

And look what surplus did of each remain,
He would to his own part restore the same again.

. * Surquedrie-presumption. VOL. IV.

For why, he said, they all unequal were,

And had encroached upon each other's share;
Like as the sea (which plain he showed there)
Had worn the earth, so did the fire the air;
So all the rest did others' parts impair:
And so were realms and nations run awry.
All which he undertook for to repair,

In sort as they were formed anciently;
And all things would reduce into equality.
Therefore the vulgar did about him flock

And cluster thick unto his leasings vain ;
Like foolish flies about an honey-crock;
In hope by him great benefit to gain,
And uncontrolled freedom to obtain.
All which when Artegal did see and hear,
How he misled the simple people's train,

In 'sdainful wise he drew unto him near,
And thus unto him spake without regard or fear.
“ Thou that presum'st to weigh the world anew,

And all things to an equal to restore,
Instead of right me seems great wrong dost show,
And far above thy forces' pitch to soar:
For ere thou limit what is less or more
In every thing, thou oughtest first to know
What was the poise of every part of yore:

And look, then, how much it doth overflow
Or fail thereof, so much is more than just to trow.
“ For at the first they all created were

In goodly measure by their Maker's might;
And weighed out in balances so near,
That not a dram was missing of their right:
The earth was in the middle centre pight,
In which it doth immoveable abide,
Hemm'd in with waters like a wall in sight,

And they with air, that not a drop can slide:
All which the heavens contain, and in their courses guide.

“ Such heavenly justice doth among them reign,

That every one do know their certain bound;
In which they do these many years remain,
And 'mongst them all no change hath yet been found :
But if thou now shouldst weigh them new in pound,
We are not sure they would so long remain :
All change is perilous, and all chance unsound;

Therefore leave off to weigh them all again, Till we may be assur'd they shall their course retain." “ Thou foolish Elf,” said then the Giant, wroth,

“ Seest not how badly all things present be,
And each estate quite out of order goeth?
And sea itself dost thou not plainly see
Encroach upon the land there under thee?
And th' earth itself how daily it 's increas'd
By all that dying to it turned be?

Were it not good that wrong were then surceast, And from the most that some were given to the least ? “ Therefore I will throw down these mountains high,

And make them level with the lowly plain.
These tow’ring rocks, which reach unto the sky,
I will thrust down into the deepest main,
And, as they were, them equalize again.
Tyrants, that make men subject to their law,
I will suppress, that they no more may reign;

And Lordings curb that Commons over-awe;
And all the wealth of rich men to the poor will draw.”
“ Of things unseen how canst thou deem aright,”

Then answered the righteous Artegal,
“ Sith thou misdeemst so much of things in sight?
What though the sea with waves continual
Do eat the earth, it is no more at all ;
Ne is the earth the less, or loseth aught:
For whatsoever from one place doth fall

Is with the tide unto another brought:
For there is nothing lost, that may be found if sought.

“ Likewise the earth is not augmented more

By all that dying unto it do fade;
For of the earth they formed were of yore:
However gay their blossoms or their blade
Do flourish now, they into dust shall vade.
What wrong then is it if that when they die
They turn to that whereof they first were made ?

All in the power of their great Maker lie:
All creatures must obey the voice of the Most High.
“ They live, they die, like as he doth ordain,

Nor ever any asketh reason why.
The hills do not the lowly vales disdain;
The vales do not the lofty hills envy.
He maketh Kings to sit in sovereignty ;
He maketh subjects to their power obey ;
He pulleth down, He setteth up on high ;

He gives to this, from that He takes away:
For all we have is His: what He list do, He may.
" Whatever thing is done, by Him is done,

Ne any may His mighty will withstand ;
Ne any may His sovereign power shun,
Ne loose that he hath bound with stedfast band.
In vain therefore dost thou now take in hand
To call to count, or weigh his works anew,
Whose counsels' depth thou canst not understand ;

Since of things subject to thy daily view
Thou dost not know the causes nor the courses due.
“ For take thy balance, if thou be so wise,

And weigh the wind that under heaven doth blow;
Or weigh the light that in the East doth rise ;
Or weigh the thought that from man's mind doth flow:
But if the weight of these thou canst not show,
Weigh but one word which from thy lips doth fall :
For how canst thou those greater secrets know,

That dost not know the least thing of them all ?
Ill can he rule the great, that cannot reach the small ”

« AnteriorContinuar »