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The Works of Aphra Behn, Volume II   By: (1640-1689)

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First Page:

THE WORKS OF APHRA BEHN

VOL. II

EDITED BY

MONTAGUE SUMMERS

CONTENTS

ABDELAZER; OR, THE MOOR'S REVENGE THE YOUNG KING; OR, THE MISTAKE THE CITY HEIRESS; OR, SIR TIMOTHY TREAT ALL THE FEIGN'D CURTEZANS; OR, A NIGHT'S INTRIGUE NOTES

ABDELAZER; OR, THE MOOR'S REVENGE.

ARGUMENT.

The old King of Spain, having conquered Fez and killed the Moorish monarch, has taken the orphaned prince Abdelazer under his protection and in time made him General. Abdelazer, though always courageous, has the desire of revenge ever uppermost, and to gain influence, rather than from any love, he becomes the Queen's paramour. She, being a lustful and wicked woman, joins with the Moor in poisoning her husband, at whose death Philip, her second son, newly returned victor from a martial expedition, leaving his army at some distance, rushes in mad with rage and publicly accuses his mother of adultery with Abdelazer. She is greatly incensed, but Cardinal Mendozo, as Protector of the King, promptly banishes her gallant. The young King Ferdinand, however, to please Florella, the Moor's wife, whom he loves, revokes this decree. Abdelazer, in revenge, next orders his native officer Osmin to kill Philip and the Cardinal. They escape by night disguised as monks, whilst Abdelazer alarms the castle with cries of treason and tells the King that Philip and the Cardinal are plotting to murder him. Ferdinand orders Abdelazer to follow them, intending to visit Florella during her husband's absence. Abdelazer, fully aware of his plan, out of pride and mischief furnishes Florella with a dagger, bidding her stab the King if he persists in his suit. Elvira, the Queen Mother's confidante, Watches the King enter Florella's apartment and conveys the news to her Mistress who, with dissembled reluctance, informs Alonzo, the Moor's brother in law. Florella resists the King's solicitations and produces the dagger threatening to stab herself. At this juncture the Queen rushes in and, feigning to think that Florella was about to attempt the King's life, kills her. Her motive for this deed is, in reality, jealousy. Whilst the King falls weeping at his dead mistress' feet Abdelazer enters, and in the ensuing fight Ferdinand is slain. Philip is then proclaimed King, but Abdelazer announcing he is a bastard, an avowal backed by the Queen, declares himself Protector of Spain, Overpowered by his following, The lords accept him. Alonzo, however, flies to Philip's camp with the tidings. A battle between the two parties follows, but the Queen treacherously detaches Mendozo, who loves her, from Philip, and although the Moors are at first beaten back they now gain the advantage and Philip is captured. At a general assembly of the nobles the Queen relates the false tale of Philip's illegitimacy and asserts that the Cardinal is his father. She privately bids Mendozo acknowledge this and so gain the crown, but he refuses to support the lie and is promptly arrested as a traitor. Abdelazer now brings forward the Infanta Leonora and proclaims her Queen of Spain, He next disposes of the Queen Mother by bidding Roderigo, a creature of his own, assassinate her forthwith. Roderigo gains admittance disguised as a friar and stabs her, upon which Abdelazer, to screen himself, rushes in and cuts him down. He next openly declares his love for Leonora and is about to force her when Osmin, his officer, enters to inform him that Alonzo, to whom Leonora is affianced, has resisted arrest but is at last secured. Abdelazer, enraged at the interruption, wounds Osmin in the arm. Leonora pities the blow; and the Moorish soldier, deeply hurt at the insult, resolves to betray his master. He accordingly goes to the prison where Philip, the Cardinal, and Alonzo are confined, and killing his fellow Zarrack who was to have been their executioner, sets them free. When Abdelazer enters he finds himself entrapped. He glories, however, in his crimes, and as they set on him kills Osmin, himself falling dead in the mêleé... Continue reading book >>


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