Thomas Kyd
The Spanish Tragedie

by

Thomas Kyd

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The Spanish Tragedie Page 01

1587

THE SPANISH TRAGEDIE

Thomas Kyd

[Edited by John Matthews Manly, 1897. This electronic text is based on the earliest extant edition, which is undated but was printed before 1618. Some bracketed text is verbatim from Manly's edition. However, some bracketed text is taken from alternate editions which Manly originally supplied in footnotes. As the editor of this electronic edition, I have sometimes chosen the clearer of two alternatives, sacrificing the specificity of Manly's footnoted edition in favor of a text that has a better chance of being read and understood by a modern audience. I have also excluded the insertions supposed to have been written by Ben Johnson, as well as the additional dialogue from III.xiii and IV.iii. Some alternate dialogue has been included as has been labeled as such.]

Containing the lamentable end of DON HORATIO, and BEL-IMPERIA: with the pittiful death of olde HIERONIMO.

Newly corrected and amended of such grosse faults as passed in the first impression.

At London Printed by Edward Allde, for Edward White

[DRAMATIS PERSONAE.

GHOST OF ANDREA |
REVENGE | the Chorus.
KING OF SPAIN.
VICEROY OF PORTUGAL.
DON CIPRIAN, duke of Castile.
HIERONIMO, knight-marshall of Spain.
BALTHAZAR, the Viceroy's son.
LORENZO, Don Ciprian's son [and Bel-imperia's brother].
HORATIO, Hieronimo's son.
ALEXANDRO |
VILLUPPO | lords of Portual.
PEDRINGANO, servant of Bel-imperia.
SERBERINE, servant of Balthazar.
Spanish General, Portuguese Embassador, Old Man, Painter Page,
Hangman, Citizens, Soldiers, Attendants, &c.
BEL-IMPERIA, Lorenzo's sister.
ISABELLA, Hieronimo's wife.
PAGE.
MESSENGER.
CHRISTOPHEL.
SERVANT.
SENEX (DON BAZULTO).
CITIZENS.

SCENE: Spain; and Portugal.]

ACTVS PRIMVS. [Prologue]

Enter the GHOAST OF ANDREA, and with him REUENGE.

GHOAST. When this eternall substance of my soule Did liue imprisond in my wanton flesh, Ech in their function seruing others need, I was a courtier in the Spanish court: My name was Don Andrea; my discent, Though not ignoble, yet inferiour far To gratious fortunes of my tender youth, For there, in prime and pride of all my yeeres, By duteous seruice and deseruing loue, In secret I possest a worthy dame, Which hight sweet Bel-imperia by name. But in the haruest of my sommer ioyes Deaths winter nipt the blossomes of my blisse, Forcing diuorce betwixt my loue and me; For in the late conflict with Portingale My valour drew me into dangers mouth Till life to death made passage through my wounds. When I was slaine, my soule descended straight To passe the flowing streame of Archeron; But churlish Charon, only boatman there, Said that, my rites of buriall not performde, I might not sit amongst his passengers. Ere Sol had slept three nights in Thetis lap, And slakte his smoaking charriot in her floud, By Don Horatio, our knight-marshals sonne, My funerals and obsequies were done. Then was the fariman of hell content To passe me ouer to the slimie strond That leades to fell Auernus ougly waues. There, pleasing Cerberus with honied speech, I past the perils of the formost porch. Not farre from hence, amidst ten thousand soules, Sate Minos, Eacus and Rhadamant; To whome no sooner gan I make approach, To craue a pasport for my wandring ghost, But Minos in grauen leaues of lotterie Drew forth the manner of my life and death. "This knight," quoth he, "both liu'd and died in loue; And for his loue tried fortune of the warres; And by warres fortune lost both loue and life." "Why then," said Eacus, "convey him hence To walke with lovers in our field of loue And the course of euerlasting time Vnder greene mirtle-trees and cipresse shades." "No, no!" said Rhadamant, "it were not well With louing soules to place a martialist. He died in warre, and must to martiall fields, Where wounded Hector liues in lasting paine, And Achilles Mermedons do scoure the plaine." Then Minos, mildest censor of the three, Made this deuice, to end the difference: "Send him," quoth he, "to our infernall king, To dome him as best seemes his Maiestie." To this effect my pasport straight was drawne. In keeping on my way to Plutos court Through dreadfull shades of euer-glooming night, I saw more sights than thousand tongues can tell Or pennes can write or mortall harts can think. Three waies there were: that on the right hand side Was ready way vnto the foresaid fields Where louers liue and bloudie martialists, But either sort containd within his bounds; The left hand path, declining fearfuly, Was ready downfall to the deepest hell, Where bloudie Furies shakes their whips of steele, And poore Ixion turnes an endles wheele, Where vsurers are choakt with melting golde, And wantons are imbraste with ougly snakes, And murderers groane with neuer-killing wounds, And periured wights scalded in boiling lead, And all foule sinnes with torments ouerwhelmd; Twixt these two waies I trod the middle path, Which brought me to the faire Elizian greene, In midst whereof there standes a stately towre, The walles of brasse, the gates of adamant. Heere finding Pluto with his Proserpine, I shewed my pasport, humbled on my knee. Whereat faire Proserpine began to smile, And begd that onely she might giue me doome. Pluto was pleasd, and sealde it with a kisse. Forthwith, Reuenge, she rounded thee in th' eare, And bad thee lead me though the gates of horn, Where dreames haue passage in the silent night. No sooner had she spoke but we weere heere, I wot not how, in the twinkling of an eye.

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