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Venice Preserved A Tragedy   By: (1652-1685)

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A Tragedy,

In Five Acts;



Correctly Given, As Performed at the Theatres Royal.

With Remarks.



London: Printed by D. S. Maurice, Fenchurch street;

Sold by T. Hughes, 35, Ludgate Street, and J. Bysh, 52, Paternoster Row.


This interesting tragedy owes its plot and plan to the Abbé de St. Réal's " Histoire de la Conjuration de Marquis de Bedamar ," or account of the Spanish conspiracy at Venice, of which the Marquis de Bedamar, the ambassador from Spain, was a promoter. Nature and the passions are finely touched in this play; and it continues a favorite, deprived, as it now is in representation, of that mixture of vile comedy which originally diversified the tragic action. It has been remarked, that Belvidera is the only truly valuable character; and indeed the principal fault of this drama seems a want of sufficient and probable motive.


Drury Lane, 1814. Covent Garden, 1817. Duke of Venice Mr. Carr. Mr. Creswell. Priuli Mr. Powell. Mr. Egerton. Bedamar Mr. J. Wallack. Mr. Connor. Jaffier Mr. Rae. Mr. C. Kemble. Pierre Mr. Elliston. Mr. Young. Renault Mr. R. Phillips. Mr. Chapman. Elliott Mr. Waldegrave. Mr. Hamerton. Spinosa Mr. Elrington. Mr. Claremont. Theodore Mr. J. West. Mr. King. Durand Mr. Wallack. Mr. Grant. Mezzana Mr. Buxton. Mr. Norris. Officers { Messrs. Ray and Messrs. Jeffrey and { Cooke. Tooley.

Belvidera Miss Smith. Miss O'Neill.

Officers, Guards, Senators, Executioner, &c.




Enter Priuli and Jaffier.

Pri. No more! I'll hear no more! Be gone and leave me.

Jaf. Not hear me! By my suffering, but you shall! My lord, my lord! I'm not that abject wretch You think me. Patience! where's the distance throws Me back so far, but I may boldly speak In right, though proud oppression will not hear me?

Pri. Have you not wrong'd me?

Jaf. Could my nature e'er Have brook'd injustice, or the doing wrongs, I need not now thus low have bent myself To gain a hearing from a cruel father. Wrong'd you?

Pri. Yes, wrong'd me! In the nicest point, The honour of my house, you've done me wrong. You may remember (for I now will speak, And urge its baseness) when you first came home From travel, with such hopes as made you look'd on, By all men's eyes, a youth of expectation, Pleas'd with your growing virtue, I receiv'd you; Courted, and sought to raise you to your merits: My house, my table, nay, my fortune too, My very self, was yours; you might have us'd me To your best service; like an open friend I treated, trusted you, and thought you mine: When, in requital of my best endeavours, You treacherously practis'd to undo me.

Jaf. Yes, all, and then adieu for ever. There's not a wretch, that lives on common charity, But's happier than me: for I have known The luscious sweets of plenty; every night Have slept with soft content about my head, And never wak'd, but to a joyful morning; Yet now must fall, like a full ear of corn, Whose blossom 'scap'd, yet's wither'd in the ripening.

Pri. Home, and be humble; study to retrench; Discharge the lazy vermin of thy hall, Those pageants of thy folly: Reduce the glitt'ring trappings of thy wife To humble weeds, fit for thy little state: Then, to some suburb cottage both retire; Drudge to feed loathsome life; get brats and starve Home, home, I say. [ exit.

Jaf. Yes, if my heart would let me This proud, this swelling heart: home I would go, But that my doors are baleful to my eyes, Fill'd and dam'd up with gaping creditors, Watchful as fowlers when their game will spring... Continue reading book >>

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