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As on this very spot of earth I fell,
As Friday saw me die, so she my prey
Becomes ev'n here, on this revolving day.

Thus while he spoke, the virgin from the ground
Upstarted fresh, already clos'd the wound,
And, unconcern'd for all she felt before,
Precipitates her flight along the shore:
The hell-hounds, as ungorg'd with llesh and blood,
Pursue their prey, and seek their wonted food.
The fiend remounts his courser, mends his pace,
And all the vision vanish'd from the place.

Long stood the noble youth oppress'd with awe,
And stupid at the wondrous things, he saw,
Surpassing common faith, transgressing nature's law,
He would have been asleep, and wish'd to wake,
But dreams, he knew, no long impression make,
Though strong at first; if vision, to what end,
But such, as must bis future state portend?
His love the damsel, and himself the fiend,
But yet reflecting, that it could not be
From heav'n, which cannot impious acts decree,
Resolv'd within himself, to shun the snare,
Which hell for his destruction did prepare,
And, as his better genius should direct,
From an ill cause to draw a good effect,

, Inspir'd from heav'n, he homeward took his way,
Nor pall'd his new design with long delay,
But of his train a trusty servant sent, .
To call his friends together at his tent.
They came, and, usual salutations paid,
With words premeditated thus he said:
What you have often counsel'd, to remove
My vain pursuit of unregarded love;
By thrift my sinking fortune to repair,
Though late yet is at last become my care.
My heart shall be my own; my vast expence
Reduc'd to bounds, by timely providence;
This only I require: invite for me
Honoria, with her father's family, ...
Her friends, and mine. The cause I shall display,
On Friday next; for that's th' appointed day.

Weil pleaş'd were all bis friends, the task was light:

The father, mother, daugliter, they invite,
Hardly the dame was drawn to this repast;
But yet resolvid, because it was the last.
The day was come, the guests invited came,
And, with the rest, th' inexorable dame.
A feast prepar'd with riotous expence',
Much cost, more care, and most magnificence.
The place ordain'd was in that haunted grove,
Where the revenging ghost pursu'd his love:
The tables in a proud pavilion spread,
With flowers below, and tissue overbead:
The rest in rank, Honoria chief in place,
Was artfully contriv'd to set her face,
To front the thicket', and behold the chace.
The feast was' serv'd, the time so well forecast,
That just when the desert and fruits were plac’d,
The fien'ds alarm began; the hollow sound
Sung in the leaves, the forest shook around,
Air blacken'd, roll'd the thunder, groan'd the ground.

Nor long before the loud laments arise,
Of one distress'd, and mastiffs mingled cries;
And first the dame came rushing through the wood,
And next the famish'd hounds, that sought their food,

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Last came the felon, on the sable steed,
Arm'd with his naked sword, and urg'd his dogs to speed,
She ran, and cry'd, her flight directly bent
(A guest unbidden) to the fatal tent,
The scene of death, and place ordain'd for punishment.
Loud was the noise, aghast was every guest,
The women sbriek'd, the men forsook the feast;
The hounds at nearer distance hoarsely bay'd;
The hunter close pursued the visionary maid,
She rent the heaven with loud laments, imploring aid.

The gallants, to protect the lady's right,
Their faulchions brandish'd at the grisly sprite;
High on his stirrups he provok'd the fight.
Then on the crowd be cast a furious look,
And wither'd all their strength before he spoke:
Back on your lives! let be, said he, my prey.
And let my vengeance take the destin'd way.
Vain are your arins, and vainer your defende,

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Against th' eternal doom of Providence:
Mine is th' ungrateful maid by heav'n design'd:
Mercy she would not give, nor mercy shall she' find.
At this the former tale again he told
With thundering tone, and dreadful to behold:
Sunk were their liearts with horror of the crime,
Nor needed to be warned a second time,
But bore each other back; some knew the face,
And all had heard the much - lamented case
Of him, who fell for love, and this the fatal place.

And now th' infernal minister advanc'd,
Seiz’d the due victim, and with fury launch'd
Her back, and, piercing through her inmost heart,
Drew backward as before th' offending part.
The reeking entrails next he tore away,
And to his meagre mastiffs made a prey.
The pale assistants on each other stard,
With gaping mouths for issuing words prepar'd;
The still-born sounds upon the palate hung,
And dy'd imperfect on the faultering tongue.
The fright was general, but the female band
(A helpless train) in more confusion-stand:
With horror shuddering, on a heap they run,
Sick at the sight of hateful justice done;
For conscience rung th' alarm, and made the case their own.

So, spread upon a lake, with upward cye
A plump of fowl behold their foe on high;
They close their trembling troop, and all attend,
On whom the sowsing eagle will descend.

But most the proud Honoria feard th' event,
And thought to her alone the vision sent.
Her guilt presents to her distracted mind
Heaven's justice, Theodore's revengerul kind,
And the same fate to the same sin assign d.
Already sees herself the monster's prey,
And feels her heart and entrails torn away.
'Twas a mute scene of sorrow, 'mix'd with fear;
Still on the table lay th' unfinish'd cheer:
The koight and hungry mastiffs stood around,
The mangled dame lay breathless on the ground,
When on a sudden, re-inspird with breath,
Again she rose, again to suffer death;

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Nor staid the hell - hounds, nor the hunter staid
But follow'd, as before, the flying maid:
Th' avenger took from earth th' aveuging sword,
And mounting light as air his sable steed he spurr'd:
The clouds dispell’d, the sky resum'd her light,
And nature stood recover'd of her fright.
But fear, the last of ills, remain'd behind,
And horror heavy sat on every mind.
Nor Theodore encourag'd more the, feast,
But sternly look'd, as hatching in his breast
Some deep desigus; which when Honoria view'd;
The fresh impulse her former fright renew'd;
She thought herself the trembling dame who fled,
Aud him the grisly ghost, that spurr'd th' infernal steed:
The more dismay'd for when the guests withdrew,
Their courteous host, saluting all the crew,
Regardless pass'd her o'er, nor grac'd' with kind adieu;
That sting infix'd within her haughty mind,
The downfall of her empire she divin'd;
And her proud heart with secret sorrow pin’d.
Home as they went, the sad discourse renew'd
Of the relentless dame to death pursu'd,
And of the sight obscene so lately view'd.
None durst arraign the righteous doom she bore,
Ev'n they who pity'd most , yet blam'd her more:
The parallel they needed not to name,
But in the death they damn'd the living dame. ,

At every little noise she look'd behind,
For still the knight. was present to her mind,
And anxious oft she started on the way,
And thought, the horseman - ghost came thundering for his prey.
Return'd, she took her bed with little rest,
But in short slumbers dreamt the funeral feast :
Awak'd she turn'd her side, and slept again;
The same black vapours mounted in her brain,
And the same dreams return'd with double pain.
Now forc'd to wake, because afraid to sleep,
Her blood all fever'd, with a furious leap
She sprang from bed, distracted in her mind,
And fear'd at every step, a twitching sprite behind.
Darkling and desperate, with a staggering pace,
Of death afraid, and conscious of disgrace;

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Fear, pride, remorse at once her heart assail'd,
Pride put remorse to fight, but fear prevailid,
Friday, the fatal day, when next it came,
Her soul forethought the fiend would change his game,
And her pursue, or Theodore be slain.
And two ghosts join their packs to hunt her o'er the plain.
This dreadful image so possess d her mind,
That desperate any succour else to find,
She ceas'd all farther hope; and now began
To make reflection on th' unhappy man.
Rich, brave, and young, who past expression lov'd,
Proof to disdain, and not to be remov'd:
Of all the men sespected and admir’d,
Of all the dames, except herself, desir'd:
Why not of her ? preferr'd above the rest,
By him with knightly deeds, and open love profess'd?
So had another been, where he his vows address'd.
This quell’d her pride, yet other doubts remain'd,
That, once disdaining, she might be disdain'd.
The fear was just, but greater fear prevail'd,
Fear of her life by hellish hounds assail'd:
He took a lowering leave; but who can tell,
What outward hate might inward love conceal ?
Her sex's arts she knew; and why not, then,
Might deep dissembling have a place in men?
Here bope began to dawn; resolv'd to try,
She fix'd on this her utmost remedy:
Death was behind, but bard it was to die,
'Twas time enough at last on death to call,
The precipice in sight: a shrub was all,
That kindly stood betwixt to break the fatal fall.

One maid she had, belov'd above the rest;
Secure of her, the secret she confess'd;
And now the chearful light her fears dispellid,
She with no winding turns the truth conceal'd,

put the woman off, and stood reveal'd:
With faults confess'd commisssion'd her to go,
If pity yet had place, and reconcile her fae;
The welcome message made, was soon receiv'd;
'Twas to be wish'd and hop'd, but scarce believ'd.
Fate seem'd a fair occasion to present:
He knew the sex, and fear'd she might repent,
Should he delay the moment of consent.

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