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Tit. I know them all, though they suppose me
mad; And will o'er-reach them in their own devices, A pair of cursed hell-hounds, and their dam.
[Aside. Dem. Madam, depart at pleasure, leave us here.
Tam. Farewell, Andronicus: Revenge now goes To lay a complot to betray thy foes.
[Exit TAMORA. Tit. I know, thou dost; and, sweet Revenge,
farewell. Chi. Tell us, old man, how shall we be employ'd ?
Tit. Tut, I have work enough for you to do.Publius, come hither, Caius, and Valentine !
Enter PUBLIUS, and Others. Pub. What's
will ? Tit.
these two ? Pub.
[Exit Titus.—PUBLIUS, &c. lay hold on
CHIRON and DEMETRIUS. Chi. Villains, forbear: we are the empress' sons. Pub. And therefore do we what we are com
manded. Stop close their mouths, let them not speak a word: Is he sure bound ? look, that
bind them fast. VOL. IX.
Re-enter Titus ANDRONICUS, with LAVINIA;
she bearing a Bason, and he a Knife. Tit. Come, come, Lavinia ; look, thy foes are
bound;Sirs, stop their mouths, let them not speak to me; But let them hear what fearful words I utter.( villains, Chiron and Demetrius! Here stands the spring whom you have stain’d with
mud; This goodly summer with your winter mix’d. You kill'd her husband; and, for that vile fault, Two of her brothers were condemn’d to death: My hand cut off, and made a merry jest: Both her sweet hands, her tongue, and that, more
dear Than hands or tongue, her spotless chastity, Inhuman traitors, you constrain’d and forc'd. What would you say, if I should let you speak? Villains, for shame you could not beg for grace. Hark, wretches, how I mean to martyr you. This one hand yet is left to cut your throats ; Whilst that Lavinia 'tween her stumps doth hold The bason, that receives your guilty blood. You know, your mother means to feast with me, And calls herself Revenge, and thinks me mad, Hark, villains; I will grind your bones to dust, And with your blood and it, I'll make a paste; And of the paste a coffinI will rear, And make two pasties of your shameful heads; And bid that strumpet, your unhallow'd dam, Like to the earth, swallow her own increase 4.
3 A coffin is the term for the crust of a raised pie.
4 i.e. her own produce. The earth's increase' is the produce of the earth, • Then shall the earth bring forth her increase.' Psalm lxvii. 6. So in The Tempest, Act iv. Sc. 1 :
• Earth's increase and foison plenty.'
This is the feast that I have bid her too,
us'd my daughter, And worse than Progne I will be reveng'd: And now prepare your throats.—Lavinia, come,
[He cuts their Throats. Receive the blood: and, when that they are dead, Let me go grind their bones to powder small, And with this hateful liquor temper it; And in that paste let their vile heads be bak’d. Come, come, be every one officious To make this banquet; which I wish may prove More stern and bloody than the Centaur's feast. So, now bring them in, for I will play the cook, And see them ready 'gainst their mother comes.
[Exeunt, bearing the dead Bodies.
Enter Lucius, MARCUS, and Goths, with A ARON,
Prisoner. Luc. Uncle Marcus, since 'tis my father's mind, That I repair to Rome, I am content. 1 Goth. And ours, with thine ?, befall what fortune
will. Luc. Good uncle, take you in this barbarous Moor, This ravenous tiger, this accursed devil; Let him receive no sustenance, fetter him, Till he be brought unto the empress' face, For testimony of her foul proceedings: And see the ambush of our friends be strong: I fear, the emperor means no good to us.
Aar. Some devil whisper curses in mine ear,
1. And our content runs parallel with thine, be the consequence of our coming to Rome what it may.'
And prompt me, that my tongue may utter forth The venomous malice of my swelling heart?
Luc. Away, inhuman dog! unhallow'd slave! Sirs, help our uncle to convey him in.
[Exeunt Goths, with A ARON. Flourish. The trumpets show the emperor is at hand. Enter SATURNINUS and TAMORA, with Tribunes,
Senators, and Others.
at Table. Enter Titus, dressed like a Cook, LAVINIA, veiled,
Young Lucius, and Others. Titus places the
Sat. Why art thou thus attir’d, Andronicus?
Tit. Because I would be sure to have all well, To entertain your highness and
your empress. Tam. We are beholden to you, good Andronicus.
Tit. Anif your highness knew my heart, you were. My lord the emperor resolve me this;
? i.e. begin the parley. We yet say, he breaks his mind.
Was it well done of rash Virginius,
Sat. It was, Andronicus.
her presence still renew his sorrows.
[He kills LAVINIA. And, with thy shame, thy father's sorrow die!
Sat. What hast thou done, unnatural, and unkind?
Sat. What,was she ravish’d? tell,who did the deed.
highness feed? Tam. Why hast thou slain thine only daughter thus?
Tit. Not I; 'twas Chiron, and Demetrius : They ravish'd her, and cut away her tongue, And they, 'twas they, that did her all this wrong.
Sat. Go, fetch them hither to us presently.
Tit. Why, there they are both, baked in that pie; Whereof their mother daintily hath fed,
3 Rowe may have availed himself of this passage in The Fair Penitent, where Sciolto asks Calista :
• Hast thou not heard what brave Virginius did?
With his own hand he slew his only daughter,' &c. Titus Andronicus (as Steevens observes) is incorrect in his statement of this occurrence, for Virginia died unviolated. Mr. Boswell seems to think this is qualified by his saying that he had more cause to slay his daughter than Virginius.