Be called adulterer, drunkard, liar, wretch!
No name left out which orthodoxy loves,
Court Journal or legitimate Review!—
Be they called tyrant, beast, fool, glutton, lover
Of other wives and husbands than their own— 370
The heaviest sin on this side of the Alps!
Wither they to a ghastly caricature
Of what was human!—let not man or beast
Behold their face with unaverted eyes!
Or hear their names with ears that tingle not 375
With blood of indignation, rage, and shame!’—
This is a perilous liquor;—good my Lords.—
[SWELLFOOT APPROACHES TO TOUCH THE GREEN BAG.]
Beware! for God’s sake, beware!-if you should break
The seal, and touch the fatal liquor—
373 or edition 1820; nor edition 1839.
Give it to me. I have been used to handle 380
All sorts of poisons. His dread Majesty
Only desires to see the colour of it.
Now, with a little common sense, my Lords,
Only undoing all that has been done
(Yet so as it may seem we but confirm it), 385
Our victory is assured. We must entice
Her Majesty from the sty, and make the Pigs
Believe that the contents of the GREEN BAG
Are the true test of guilt or innocence.
And that, if she be guilty, ’twill transform her 390
To manifest deformity like guilt.
If innocent, she will become transfigured
Into an angel, such as they say she is;
And they will see her flying through the air,
So bright that she will dim the noonday sun; 395
Showering down blessings in the shape of comfits.
This, trust a priest, is just the sort of thing
Swine will believe. I’ll wager you will see them
Climbing upon the thatch of their low sties,
With pieces of smoked glass, to watch her sail 400
Among the clouds, and some will hold the flaps
Of one another’s ears between their teeth,
To catch the coming hail of comfits in.
You, Purganax, who have the gift o’ the gab,
Make them a solemn speech to this effect: 405
I go to put in readiness the feast
Kept to the honour of our goddess Famine,
Where, for more glory, let the ceremony
Take place of the uglification of the Queen.
DAKRY (TO SWELLFOOT):
I, as the keeper of your sacred conscience, 410
Humbly remind your Majesty that the care
Of your high office, as Man-milliner
To red Bellona, should not be deferred.
All part, in happier plight to meet again.
END OF THE ACT 1.