Front Page Titles (by Subject) ACT III. - The Works of Voltaire, Vol. VIII The Dramatic Works Part 1 (Mérope, Olympia, The Orphan of China, Brutus) and Part II (Mahomet, Amelia, Oedipus, Mariamne, Socrates).
ACT III. - Voltaire, The Works of Voltaire, Vol. VIII The Dramatic Works Part 1 (Mérope, Olympia, The Orphan of China, Brutus) and Part II (Mahomet, Amelia, Oedipus, Mariamne, Socrates). 
The Works of Voltaire. A Contemporary Version. A Critique and Biography by John Morley, notes by Tobias Smollett, trans. William F. Fleming (New York: E.R. DuMont, 1901). In 21 vols. Vol. VIII The Dramatic Works Part 1 (Mérope, Olympia, The Orphan of China, Brutus) and Part II (Mahomet, Amelia, Oedipus, Mariamne, Socrates).
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genghis, octar, osman.
- What say the captives, is the fraud discovered,
- And vengeance taken on these vile impostors?
- Have they delivered up the orphan prince
- To Octar?
- Prayers, and threats, and torments, all
- Are vain: the undaunted Zamti still persists
- In his first answer: on his open brows
- Are engraved the marks of truth: the mournful fair one,
- Whose grief but adds new lustre to her charms,
- With tears incessant and heart-rending sighs,
- Moves every heart: spite of ourselves we wept
- Her wretched fate: ne’er did my eyes behold
- A sweeter mourner: she entreats to see
- And speak with you; the conqueror of kings,
- She hopes, will hear the wretched, and in wrath
- Remember mercy; that he will protect
- A guiltless child, and show mankind his goodness
- Is like his power, unlimited. ’Twas thus,
- My lord, she spoke of you, and I have promised
- She shall have audience.
- [To one of the attendants.
- Bid her enter now,
- We shall unravel this deep mystery;
- But let her not imagine a few sighs,
- And bidden tears, can e’er impose on me:
- I have experienced all these female arts,
- But I defy them now: let her be careful,
- Her life depends on her sincerity.
- What do I see? O heaven!
- It cannot be Idame, sure my senses—
genghis, idame, octar, osman.
- My lord, I came not to solicit pardon,
- My forfeit life is yours, I ask not for it:
- Why should I wish for years of added woe?
- But spare a guiltless infant.
- Rise, Idame,
- Fate conquers all, it has deceived us both.
- If heaven hath raised a poor inhabitant
- Of Scythia, once the object of your scorn,
- To power, and splendor, you have naught to fear:
- The emperor never will avenge the wrongs
- Of Temugin; but public good demands
- The royal victim; ’tis a sacrifice
- Which must be made: for your own son, myself
- Will be his guard: I promise to protect him.
- But inform me, madam,
- What is this fraud, this mystery between you?
- For I must know it all.
- Have I not cause to hate this Zamti?
- Restore my child,
- You’ve promised it.
- His pardon must depend
- On you alone: you know I have been injured,
- My favors scorned, my orders disobeyed:
- Who is this Zamti, this respected lord,
- This husband? in that name alone comprised
- Is every guilt: what charms has he to boast
- Who braves me thus?
- He was my only comfort,
- My joy, my happiness, the best of men;
- He served his God, his country, and his king.
- How long, Idame, have you been united?
- Ever since the fatal time, when wayward fortune
- Espoused thy cause, and gave a tyrant power
- To scourge mankind.
- I understand you, madam,
- E’er since the time you mean, when I was scorned
- By a proud beauty, when this country first
- Deserved the chains which it was doomed to wear.
genghis, octar, osman.
[On one side of the stage.
idame, and zamti.
[On the other, Guords.
- What sayest thou, slave? hast thou delivered up
- The emperor’s son?
- I have, my lord, ’tis done:
- I have fulfilled my duty.
- Well thou knowest
- Nor fraud, nor insolence escape my vengeance:
- If thou hast dared to hide him from my wrath,
- He must be found, his death shall follow thine.
- [To the guards.
- Seize and destroy that infant.
- Stay, cruel tyrant, stay, is this your pity,
- Is this your promise?
- I have been deceived;
- Explain the mystery, madam, or he dies.
- I’ll tell thee all; and if it be a crime
- To follow nature, and obey her laws,
- If still thy cruel spirit thirsts for blood,
- Let all your anger light on me, but spare
- The noble Zamti: to our mutual care
- The emperor entrusted his dear son:
- Thou knowest too well what scenes of horrid slaughter
- Followed thy cruel victory, and marked
- Thy steps with blood; that might have satisfied
- A less inhuman conqueror: when thy slaves
- Demanded our last hope, the royal heir,
- My generous Zamti, faithful to his king,
- To duty gave up all, and sacrificed
- His son, nor listened to the powerful voice
- Of nature; I admired that patriot firmness
- I had not strength to imitate: alas!
- I am a mother, how could I consent
- To my child’s death? my terrors, my despair,
- My rage, my anguish, all too plainly spoke
- What Zamti strove to hide: behold, my lord,
- The wretched father, he deserves your pity:
- So does my guiltless infant: punish me,
- And me alone: forgive me, dearest Zamti,
- Forgive a mother’s tenderness, forgive
- A wife that loves thee and would save thy son.
- I have forgiven thee, and, thank heaven, my king,
- The royal infant’s safe.
- ’Tis false; begone,
- And find him, traitor, or thou diest; atone
- For thy past crimes.
- The crime were to obey
- A tyrant, but my royal master’s voice
- Cries from the tomb, and bids me tell thee, Genghis,
- Thou art my conqueror, but not my king:
- Were Zamti born thy subject, he had been
- Most faithful to thee: I have sacrificed
- My son, and thinkest thou I can fear to die?
- [To the guard.
- Away with him.
- I have deserved thy anger, I alone
- Should feel thy vengeance: thou hast slain my king,
- And now my husband and my child must fall
- By thy destructive hand: inhuman tyrant,
- When will thy wrath be satisfied?
- Follow thy guilty husband: darest thou plead
- For mercy, thou reproach me?
- If ever I think of clemency,
- It must not be till ample reparation
- Is made for all my wrongs: you understand me.
- What means this fluttering heart, and wherefore thus
- Steals from my breast the involuntary sigh?
- Some power divine protects her: O my Octar,
- What secret charms have innocence and beauty,
- That proud authority should thus submit
- To own their influence? I have lost myself
- And want a friend; O lend me thy kind counsel.
- Since I must speak, I’ll speak with freedom; know then
- This dangerous branch of a detested race
- Must be cut off, or we are not secure
- In our new conquest; victory’s best guard
- Is rigor; by severity alone
- Your power can be established. Time, my lord,
- Will bring back order and tranquillity;
- The people by degrees forget their wrongs,
- Or pardon them: you then may reign in peace.
- And can it be Idame, that proud beauty,
- Given to another, to my mortal foe!
- She merits not your pity, but your hate;
- I cannot, must not think you ever loved her;
- ’Twas but a short and momentary flame,
- That sparkled and expired; her cruel scorn,
- Her proud refusal, and the hand of time,
- Have quite extinguished it; she is no more
- To Genghis now than the ignoble wife,
- Of an abandoned traitor.
- He shall die;
- A slave! a rival!
- Wherefore lives he yet?
- Strike, and revenge thyself.
- I know not why,
- But my fond heart still trembles at the thought
- Of injuring her: subdued by beauty’s tears
- I dare not hurt a rival and a slave;
- Even in the husband I respect the wife:
- Is love indeed so great a conqueror,
- And must I grace his triumphs?
- All I know,
- And all I wish for, is to follow thee,
- The rattling chariot, and the sounding bow,
- The fiery coursers, and the din of arms:
- These are my passions, these the joys of Octar:
- I am a stranger to the sighs of love,
- And think them far beneath the royal soul
- Of Genghis; they debase a character
- So great as thine.
- I know my power, I know
- That I could make her mine: but what avails
- The fairest form without the conquered heart?
- Where is the joy to press within our arms
- A trembling slave? to see her beauteous eyes
- Forever bathed in tears, and her full heart
- Oppressed with sorrow? ’tis a barbarous triumph:
- The savage herd, that through the forest roam,
- Enjoy more peace, and boast a purer love:
- The fair Idame has some secret power
- That charms me more than victory and empire:
- I thought I could have driven her from my heart,
- But she returns, and triumphs.
genghis, octar, osman.
- That she will perish with her husband rather
- Than tell the place where, hid from every eye,
- The orphan lies concealed; the tender husband
- Supports her in his arms; with added courage
- Inspires her soul, and teaches her to die.
- They wish to be united in the grave;
- The people throng around, and every eye
- Is wet with tears, lamenting their sad fate.
- And does Idame talk of death from me?
- Fly, Osman, fly, tell her I hold her life
- As sacred as my own: away.
- This infant,
- Concerning him, my lord—what’s to be done?
- You gave commands he should be torn
- Even from Idame’s bosom.
- We must think
- Of that hereafter.
- What if they should hide—
- Still they may deceive you.
- Idame is incapable of fraud.
- And would you then preserve the royal race?
- I would preserve Idame; for the rest
- ’Tis equal all, dispose it as thou wilt.
- Go, bring her hither—stay—my Octar—try
- If thou canst soften this rebellious slave,
- This Zamti, and persuade him to obey me.
- We will not heed this infant; he shall make me
- A nobler sacrifice.
- To subdue Idame,
- To see her, to adore her, to be loved
- By that ungrateful fair one; or to take
- My full revenge, to punish her, and die.
End of the Third Act.