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Titus Andronicus

Titus Andronicus Translation Act 1, Scene 1

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The Tomb of the ANDRONICI appearing; the Tribunes and Senators aloft. Enter, below, from one side, SATURNINUS and his Followers; and, from the other side, BASSIANUS and his Followers; with drum and colours

SATURNINUS

Noble patricians, patrons of my right, Defend the justice of my cause with arms, And, countrymen, my loving followers, Plead my successive title with your swords: I am his first-born son, that was the last That wore the imperial diadem of Rome; Then let my father's honours live in me, Nor wrong mine age with this indignity.

SATURNINUS 

Noble patricians, since you support my right to rule, defend my just cause with weapons. And countrymen, my loyal followers, fight for my inheritance with your swords: I am the first-born son of the last emperor, so let me take the crown and don't make me lower myself to ask for it. 

BASSIANUS

Romans, friends, followers, favorers of my right, If ever Bassianus, Caesar's son, Were gracious in the eyes of royal Rome, Keep then this passage to the Capitol And suffer not dishonour to approach The imperial seat, to virtue consecrate, To justice, continence and nobility; But let desert in pure election shine, And, Romans, fight for freedom in your choice.

BASSIANUS

Romans, friends, followers, supporters of my right to rule—if Bassianus, Caesar's son, ever had a good reputation in the eyes of royal Rome, then block this man's path. Don't let dishonor approach the imperial throne, where there should be only virtue, justice, restraint, and nobility. Instead, elect someone who deserves it, and Romans, fight for your right to freely choose your own emperor.

Enter MARCUS ANDRONICUS, aloft, with the crown

MARCUS ANDRONICUS

Princes, that strive by factions and by friends Ambitiously for rule and empery, Know that the people of Rome, for whom we stand A special party, have, by common voice, In election for the Roman empery, Chosen Andronicus, surnamed Pius For many good and great deserts to Rome: A nobler man, a braver warrior, Lives not this day within the city walls: He by the senate is accit'd home From weary wars against the barbarous Goths; That, with his sons, a terror to our foes, Hath yoked a nation strong, train'd up in arms. Ten years are spent since first he undertook This cause of Rome and chastised with arms Our enemies' pride: five times he hath return'd Bleeding to Rome, bearing his valiant sons In coffins from the field; And now at last, laden with horror's spoils, Returns the good Andronicus to Rome, Renowned Titus, flourishing in arms. Let us entreat, by honour of his name, Whom worthily you would have now succeed. And in the Capitol and senate's right, Whom you pretend to honour and adore, That you withdraw you and abate your strength; Dismiss your followers and, as suitors should, Plead your deserts in peace and humbleness.

MARCUS ANDRONICUS

Ambitious princes, fighting each other to become emperor! The people of Rome, whom I have been elected to represent, have voted and chosen Andronicus—called "Andronicus Pius" for all his great deeds, since there's no nobler man or braver warrior in all of Rome—as their new emperor. The Senate has summoned him home from the war against the barbaric Goths. With his sons, he defeated a strong nation that trains its warriors from their birth. It’s been ten years since he first went to war and punished our enemies' pride with his weapons; he’s come back five times, bearing the dead bodies of his brave sons. And now at last, bringing prizes won during war, the famous Titus Andronicus returns to Rome in triumph. Let us ask you—out of respect for the late emperor, the Capitol, and the Senate, which you claim to honor—that you back down, dismiss your followers, and make your case peacefully and humbly.

SATURNINUS

How fair the tribune speaks to calm my thoughts!

SATURNINUS

The tribune speaks well, and calms me down.

BASSIANUS

Marcus Andronicus, so I do ally In thy uprightness and integrity, And so I love and honour thee and thine, Thy noble brother Titus and his sons, And her to whom my thoughts are humbled all, Gracious Lavinia, Rome's rich ornament, That I will here dismiss my loving friends, And to my fortunes and the people's favor Commit my cause in balance to be weigh'd.

BASSIANUS

Marcus Andronicus, I have much respect for your honesty and integrity. And I have so much love and honor for you and your family—your noble brother Titus and his sons, and lovely Lavinia, the object of my affections—that I will dismiss my followers, and let the people decide my fate.

Exeunt the followers of BASSIANUS

SATURNINUS

Friends, that have been thus forward in my right, I thank you all and here dismiss you all, And to the love and favor of my country Commit myself, my person and the cause.

SATURNINUS

Friends and supporters: I thank you and dismiss you all, relying only on the love and respect of my country to judge my cause.

Exeunt the followers of SATURNINUS

SATURNINUS

Rome, be as just and gracious unto meAs I am confident and kind to thee.Open the gates, and let me in.

SATURNINUS

Rome, be as fair and gracious to me as I’ve been straightforward and kind to you. Open the gates, and let me in.

BASSIANUS

Tribunes, and me, a poor competitor.

BASSIANUS

Tribunes, let me—a poor competitor—in, too.

Flourish. SATURNINUS and BASSIANUS go up into the Capitol

Enter a Captain

CAPTAIN

Romans, make way: the good Andronicus. Patron of virtue, Rome's best champion, Successful in the battles that he fights, With honour and with fortune is return'd From where he circumscribed with his sword, And brought to yoke, the enemies of Rome.

CAPTAIN

Romans, make way: the good Andronicus, model of virtue, Rome’s best champion, victorious in battle, returns from the wars with honor and good fortune, having defeated and captured our enemies.

Drums and trumpets sounded. Enter MARTIUS and MUTIUS; After them, two Men bearing a coffin covered with black; then LUCIUS and QUINTUS. After them, TITUS ANDRONICUS; and then TAMORA, with ALARBUS, DEMETRIUS, CHIRON, AARON, and other Goths, prisoners; Soldiers and people following. The Bearers set down the coffin, and TITUS speaks

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Hail, Rome, victorious in thy mourning weeds! Lo, as the bark, that hath discharged her fraught, Returns with precious jading to the bay From whence at first she weigh'd her anchorage, Cometh Andronicus, bound with laurel boughs, To re-salute his country with his tears, Tears of true joy for his return to Rome. Thou great defender of this Capitol, Stand gracious to the rites that we intend! Romans, of five and twenty valiant sons, Half of the number that King Priam had, Behold the poor remains, alive and dead! These that survive let Rome reward with love; These that I bring unto their latest home, With burial amongst their ancestors: Here Goths have given me leave to sheathe my sword. Titus, unkind and careless of thine own, Why suffer'st thou thy sons, unburied yet, To hover on the dreadful shore of Styx? Make way to lay them by their brethren.

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Hail Rome, victorious even in your mourning clothes! Like the ship returned home with treasures from abroad, Andronicus comes crowned with laurels of victory, to re-salute his country with tears—tears of true joy—for his return. Jupiter Capitolinus, defender of the city, accept our offering! Romans, these men are all that’s left of my twenty-five sons (half the number that King Priam had). Look at them! The ones who are still alive deserve your love and gratitude; the ones who are dead I will bury with their ancestors. Here, for once, I’m putting down my sword. Titus, you've been unkind and careless to your own children. Why do you allow your unburied sons to remain on the shores of the Styx? Make way, so that I can bury them with their brothers.

The tomb is opened

There greet in silence, as the dead are wont,
And sleep in peace, slain in your country's wars!
O sacred receptacle of my joys,
Sweet cell of virtue and nobility,
How many sons of mine hast thou in store,
That thou wilt never render to me more!

There you can speak to each other in silence, as the dead do, and sleep in peace, you who died fighting for your country. Oh, sacred home of my children, of virtue and nobility, you have taken so many of my sons but will never return any to me.

LUCIUS

Give us the proudest prisoner of the Goths, That we may hew his limbs, and on a pile Ad manes fratrum sacrifice his flesh, Before this earthy prison of their bones; That so the shadows be not unappeased, Nor we disturb'd with prodigies on earth.

LUCIUS

Give us the highest-ranking Goth prisoner, so that we can cut his limbs and for the spirits of our brothers sacrifice him in front of this tomb: that way their spirits will be at rest and they won't haunt us.

TITUS ANDRONICUS

I give him you, the noblest that survives,The eldest son of this distressed queen.

TITUS ANDRONICUS

I give you the noblest of my prisoners, the eldest son of this defeated queen.

TAMORA

Stay, Roman brethren! Gracious conqueror, Victorious Titus, rue the tears I shed, A mother's tears in passion for her son: And if thy sons were ever dear to thee, O, think my son to be as dear to me! Sufficeth not that we are brought to Rome, To beautify thy triumphs and return, Captive to thee and to thy Roman yoke, But must my sons be slaughter'd in the streets, For valiant doings in their country's cause? O, if to fight for king and commonweal Were piety in thine, it is in these. Andronicus, stain not thy tomb with blood: Wilt thou draw near the nature of the gods? Draw near them then in being merciful: Sweet mercy is nobility's true badge: Thrice noble Titus, spare my first-born son.

TAMORA

Stop, Roman friends! Gracious conqueror, victorious Titus, pity the tears I shed, for they’re a mother’s tears for her son. If you ever loved your sons, imagine that I love my son just as much! Isn’t it enough that we’re brought to Rome, to add to your triumph, as your prisoners? Do you also have to slaughter my sons in the streets, just because they fought to protect their homeland? If your sons were brave to fight for their country, then mine were as well. Andronicus, don’t stain your tomb with blood: don’t you want to be like a god? Be like a god in being merciful, for sweet mercy is the truest sign of nobility. Noble Titus, let my first-born son live.

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Patient yourself, madam, and pardon me. These are their brethren, whom you Goths beheld Alive and dead, and for their brethren slain Religiously they ask a sacrifice: To this your son is mark'd, and die he must, To appease their groaning shadows that are gone.

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Calm yourself, madam, and forgive me. These are their brothers, who you saw alive and dead, and for their dead brothers they ask a religious sacrifice. Your son must die, to satisfy the ghosts of the dead.

LUCIUS

Away with him! and make a fire straight;And with our swords, upon a pile of wood,Let's hew his limbs till they be clean consumed.

LUCIUS

Take him away! And build a fire: let’s cut him to pieces with our swords on a pile of wood, until he’s consumed by the flames.

Exeunt LUCIUS, QUINTUS, MARTIUS, and MUTIUS, with ALARBUS

TAMORA

O cruel, irreligious piety!

TAMORA

Oh, cruel, irreligious faith! 

CHIRON

Was ever Scythia half so barbarous?

CHIRON

Were the Scythians ever so barbaric? 

DEMETRIUS

Oppose not Scythia to ambitious Rome. Alarbus goes to rest; and we survive To tremble under Titus' threatening looks. Then, madam, stand resolved, but hope withal The self-same gods that arm'd the Queen of Troy With opportunity of sharp revenge Upon the Thracian tyrant in his tent, May favor Tamora, the Queen of Goths— When Goths were Goths and Tamora was queen— To quit the bloody wrongs upon her foes.

DEMETRIUS

Ambitious Rome is no better than Scythia. Alarbus is dead, and we live only as Titus’s prisoners. Then, madam, prepare for death. But don’t give up hope that the gods —who gave the Queen of Troy opportunity to take revenge on the Thracian tyrant in his tent—might favor Tamora, the Queen of Goths (when you were still queen and we were still Goths, that is) to give them what they deserve.

Re-enter LUCIUS, QUINTUS, MARTIUS and MUTIUS, with their swords bloody

LUCIUS

See, lord and father, how we have perform'd Our Roman rites: Alarbus' limbs are lopp'd, And entrails feed the sacrificing fire, Whose smoke, like incense, doth perfume the sky. Remaineth nought, but to inter our brethren, And with loud 'larums welcome them to Rome.

LUCIUS

See, lord and father, how we’ve done our Roman sacrifice: Alarbus's limbs are cut off and his innards feed the fire as the smoke perfumes the sky. There's nothing else to do but bury our brothers and welcome them to Rome with celebration.

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Let it be so; and let AndronicusMake this his latest farewell to their souls.

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Let it be so, but first Andronicus will say a last goodbye to their souls.

Trumpets sounded, and the coffin laid in the tomb

TITUS ANDRONICUS

In peace and honour rest you here, my sons; Rome's readiest champions, repose you here in rest, Secure from worldly chances and mishaps! Here lurks no treason, here no envy swells, Here grow no damned grudges; here are no storms, No noise, but silence and eternal sleep: In peace and honour rest you here, my sons!

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Rest in peace and honor here, my sons: you were always ready to serve Rome, so rest here safe from any more suffering. Here there’s no treason, no jealousy, no grudges. Here are no storms, no noise, but just silence and eternal sleep: rest in peace and honor here, my sons!

Enter LAVINIA

LAVINIA

In peace and honour live Lord Titus long; My noble lord and father, live in fame! Lo, at this tomb my tributary tears I render, for my brethren's obsequies; And at thy feet I kneel, with tears of joy, Shed on the earth, for thy return to Rome: O, bless me here with thy victorious hand, Whose fortunes Rome's best citizens applaud!

LAVINIA

Lord Titus, my noble lord and father, may you live forever in peace, honor, and good reputation! I cry at this tomb for my brothers, and I kneel at your feet with tears of joy for your return to Rome. Oh, bless me with your victorious hand, applauded by Rome’s best citizens!

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Kind Rome, that hast thus lovingly reserved The cordial of mine age to glad my heart! Lavinia, live; outlive thy father's days, And fame's eternal date, for virtue's praise!

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Kind Rome, you have given me this sweet medicine to make my heart happy again. Lavinia, live: outlive your father, and may everyone remember your virtue after you’re gone.

Enter, below, MARCUS ANDRONICUS and Tribunes; re-enter SATURNINUS and BASSIANUS, attended

MARCUS ANDRONICUS

Long live Lord Titus, my beloved brother,Gracious triumpher in the eyes of Rome!

MARCUS ANDRONICUS

Long live Lord Titus, my beloved brother, gracious victor in the eyes of Rome!

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Thanks, gentle tribune, noble brother Marcus.

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Thanks, kind tribune, noble brother Marcus.

MARCUS ANDRONICUS

And welcome, nephews, from successful wars, You that survive, and you that sleep in fame! Fair lords, your fortunes are alike in all, That in your country's service drew your swords: But safer triumph is this funeral pomp, That hath aspired to Solon's happiness And triumphs over chance in honour's bed. Titus Andronicus, the people of Rome, Whose friend in justice thou hast ever been, Send thee by me, their tribune and their trust, This palliament of white and spotless hue; And name thee in election for the empire, With these our late-deceased emperor's sons: Be candidatus then, and put it on, And help to set a head on headless Rome.

MARCUS ANDRONICUS

And welcome, nephews, from successful wars—both you who survived and you that died. Lords, everyone who fought for his country is equal in our eyes.  Your dead sons' funeral is a greater triumph than the happiness we who survive enjoy, for they have achieved the honor and security Solon praised. But Titus Andronicus, the people of Rome—you’ve always been their friend—have sent me, their tribune, to give you this white palliament and tell you that they have elected you as their emperor. Be candidatus with the sons of our late emperor, then, and put it on, helping to set a head on headless Rome.

TITUS ANDRONICUS

A better head her glorious body fits Than his that shakes for age and feebleness: What should I don this robe, and trouble you? Be chosen with proclamations to-day, To-morrow yield up rule, resign my life, And set abroad new business for you all? Rome, I have been thy soldier forty years, And led my country's strength successfully, And buried one and twenty valiant sons, Knighted in field, slain manfully in arms, In right and service of their noble country: Give me a staff of honour for mine age, But not a sceptre to control the world: Upright he held it, lords, that held it last.

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Her glorious body could do with a better head, one that doesn’t shake with age and weakness. Why should I put on this robe, and trouble you? If you choose me today, tomorrow I’ll die, and you’ll have to go about the whole business again. Rome, I have been your soldier for forty years, led my country's army successfully, and buried twenty-one brave sons, killed fighting for their country. Give me a staff of honor in my old age, but not a scepter to control the world: the last one who held it was stronger than I am.

MARCUS ANDRONICUS

Titus, thou shalt obtain and ask the empery.

MARCUS ANDRONICUS

Titus, you will be emperor if you ask for it. 

SATURNINUS

Proud and ambitious tribune, canst thou tell?

SATURNINUS

Proud and ambitious tribune, how can you tell? 

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Patience, Prince Saturninus.

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Calm down, Prince Saturninus.

SATURNINUS

Romans, do me right: Patricians, draw your swords: and sheathe them not Till Saturninus be Rome's emperor. Andronicus, would thou wert shipp'd to hell, Rather than rob me of the people's hearts!

SATURNINUS

Romans, do the right thing: patricians, draw your swords, and don’t put them away until Saturninus is Rome’s emperor. Andronicus, I’d rather you were shipped to hell than steal the people’s love from me!

LUCIUS

Proud Saturnine, interrupter of the goodThat noble-minded Titus means to thee!

LUCIUS

Proud Saturnine, you’re getting in your own way—Titus is trying to do you a favor!

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Content thee, prince; I will restore to theeThe people's hearts, and wean them from themselves.

TITUS ANDRONICUS

It will be all right, prince; I’ll make the people love you again.

BASSIANUS

Andronicus, I do not flatter thee, But honour thee, and will do till I die: My faction if thou strengthen with thy friends, I will most thankful be; and thanks to men Of noble minds is honourable meed.

BASSIANUS

Andronicus, I say without flattery that I respect you, and will do so until I die. If you give me your support, I’ll be thankful to you; and thanks is good food for honorable men.

TITUS ANDRONICUS

People of Rome, and people's tribunes here,I ask your voices and your suffrages:Will you bestow them friendly on Andronicus?

TITUS ANDRONICUS

People of Rome, and their representatives here, I ask for your voices and your votes: will you let Andronicus choose the next emperor?

TRIBUNES

To gratify the good Andronicus,And gratulate his safe return to Rome,The people will accept whom he admits.

TRIBUNES

To please the good Andronicus, and celebrate his safe return to Rome, the people will accept whom he recommends. 

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Tribunes, I thank you: and this suit I make, That you create your emperor's eldest son, Lord Saturnine; whose virtues will, I hope, Reflect on Rome as Titan's rays on earth, And ripen justice in this commonweal: Then, if you will elect by my advice, Crown him and say 'Long live our emperor!'

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Tribunes, thank you: I ask you to elect the emperor's eldest son, Lord Saturnine. I hope his virtues will shine on Rome like the sun, ripening justice in our country. So if you will elect him on my recommendation, crown him and say "Long live our emperor!"

MARCUS ANDRONICUS

With voices and applause of every sort, Patricians and plebeians, we create Lord Saturninus Rome's great emperor, And say 'Long live our Emperor Saturnine!'

MARCUS ANDRONICUS

With the voices of us all—patricians and plebeians—we elect Lord Saturninus as Rome's great emperor, and say "Long live our Emperor Saturnine!"

A long flourish till they come down

SATURNINUS

Titus Andronicus, for thy favors done To us in our election this day, I give thee thanks in part of thy deserts, And will with deeds requite thy gentleness: And, for an onset, Titus, to advance Thy name and honourable family, Lavinia will I make my empress, Rome's royal mistress, mistress of my heart, And in the sacred Pantheon her espouse: Tell me, Andronicus, doth this motion please thee?

SATURNINUS

Titus Andronicus, I thank you for the favor you’ve done me, and in return will show my gratitude with actions. To bring your family up in the world, I’ll marry your daughter Lavinia in the holy Pantheon and make her Rome’s empress and mistress of my heart. Tell me, Andronicus, does this please you?

TITUS ANDRONICUS

It doth, my worthy lord; and in this match I hold me highly honour'd of your grace: And here in sight of Rome to Saturnine, King and commander of our commonweal, The wide world's emperor, do I consecrate My sword, my chariot and my prisoners; Presents well worthy Rome's imperial lord: Receive them then, the tribute that I owe, Mine honour's ensigns humbled at thy feet.

TITUS ANDRONICUS

It does, my worthy lord; you honor me with this match. And here in front of all Rome, I give to you my sword, my chariot, and my prisoners, presents worthy of Rome’s imperial lord: take them then, as the tribute I owe you.

SATURNINUS

Thanks, noble Titus, father of my life! How proud I am of thee and of thy gifts Rome shall record, and when I do forget The least of these unspeakable deserts, Romans, forget your fealty to me.

SATURNINUS

Thanks, noble Titus, father of my life! Rome will know how proud I am of you and your gifts, and when I forget the least of them, Romans, forget your loyalty to me.

TITUS ANDRONICUS

[To TAMORA] Now, madam, are you prisoner to an emperor; To him that, for your honour and your state, Will use you nobly and your followers.

TITUS ANDRONICUS

[To TAMORA] Now, madam, you're the prisoner of an emperor; out of respect for your honor and rank, he'll treat you and your followers well. 

SATURNINUS

A goodly lady, trust me; of the hue That I would choose, were I to choose anew. Clear up, fair queen, that cloudy countenance: Though chance of war hath wrought this change of cheer, Thou comest not to be made a scorn in Rome: Princely shall be thy usage every way. Rest on my word, and let not discontent Daunt all your hopes: madam, he comforts you Can make you greater than the Queen of Goths. Lavinia, you are not displeased with this?

SATURNINUS

A lovely lady, trust me; of the sort that I would choose, if I could choose again. Don't make that sad face, beautiful queen: although you've been defeated in war, you aren't in Rome to be humiliated. You'll be treated like a queen in every way. Trust me, and don't let grief blight your hopes: madam, the man that comforts you can make you greater than the Queen of Goths. Lavinia, aren't you angry about this?   

LAVINIA

Not I, my lord; sith true nobilityWarrants these words in princely courtesy.

LAVINIA

Not I, my lord; a king should speak nobly and courteously. 

SATURNINUS

Thanks, sweet Lavinia. Romans, let us go;Ransomless here we set our prisoners free:Proclaim our honours, lords, with trump and drum.

SATURNINUS

Thanks, sweet Lavinia. Romans, let us go; we set these prisoners free without ransom. Celebrate our honor, lords, with trumpets and drums.

Flourish. SATURNINUS courts TAMORA in dumb show

BASSIANUS

Lord Titus, by your leave, this maid is mine.

BASSIANUS

Lord Titus, with all due respect, this girl is mine.

Seizing LAVINIA

TITUS ANDRONICUS

How, sir! are you in earnest then, my lord?

TITUS ANDRONICUS

How could this be, sir? Are you serious, my lord?

BASSIANUS

Ay, noble Titus; and resolved withalTo do myself this reason and this right.

BASSIANUS

Yes, noble Titus; and I'm prepared to fight for her. 

MARCUS ANDRONICUS

'Suum cuique' is our Roman justice:This prince in justice seizeth but his own.

MARCUS ANDRONICUS

"To each his own" is our Roman law; this prince takes what is his by right. 

LUCIUS

And that he will, and shall, if Lucius live.

LUCIUS

And that he will, and shall, if Lucius is alive to fight for it.

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Traitors, avaunt! Where is the emperor's guard?Treason, my lord! Lavinia is surprised!

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Traitors, stop! Where are the emperor's guards? Treason, my lord! Lavinia is taken! 

SATURNINUS

Surprised! by whom?

SATURNINUS

Taken! By whom?

BASSIANUS

By him that justly mayBear his betroth'd from all the world away.

BASSIANUS

By her betrothed, who can justly take her away from all the world. 

Exeunt BASSIANUS and MARCUS with LAVINIA

MUTIUS

Brothers, help to convey her hence away,And with my sword I'll keep this door safe.

MUTIUS

Brothers, help me take her away, and I'll guard this door with my sword. 

Exeunt LUCIUS, QUINTUS, and MARTIUS

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Follow, my lord, and I'll soon bring her back.

TITUS ANDRONICUS

[To SATURNINUS] Come with me, my lord, and I'll bring her back soon.

MUTIUS

My lord, you pass not here.

MUTIUS

My lord, you can't pass me. 

TITUS ANDRONICUS

What, villain boy!Barr'st me my way in Rome?

TITUS ANDRONICUS

What, stupid boy! You stand in my way in Rome? 

Stabbing MUTIUS

MUTIUS

Help, Lucius, help!

MUTIUS

Help, Lucius, help!

Dies

During the fray, SATURNINUS, TAMORA, DEMETRIUS, CHIRON and AARON go out and re-enter, above

Re-enter LUCIUS

LUCIUS

My lord, you are unjust, and, more than so,In wrongful quarrel you have slain your son.

LUCIUS

My lord, you are wrong, and, more than that, you've killed your own son. 

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Nor thou, nor he, are any sons of mine;My sons would never so dishonour me:Traitor, restore Lavinia to the emperor.

TITUS ANDRONICUS

He's no son of mine, and nor are you: my sons would never dishonor me like this. Traitor, give Lavinia to the emperor. 

LUCIUS

Dead, if you will; but not to be his wife,That is another's lawful promised love.

LUCIUS

I'll give her to you dead, if you want; but she'll never be his wife. She is lawfully betrothed to another. 

Exit

SATURNINUS

No, Titus, no; the emperor needs her not, Nor her, nor thee, nor any of thy stock: I'll trust, by leisure, him that mocks me once; Thee never, nor thy traitorous haughty sons, Confederates all thus to dishonour me. Was there none else in Rome to make a stale, But Saturnine? Full well, Andronicus, Agree these deeds with that proud brag of thine, That said'st I begg'd the empire at thy hands.

SATURNINUS

No, Titus, no; the emperor doesn't need her, nor you, nor any of your family. I might learn to trust a man again after he made fun of me once; but I'll never trust you, nor your traitorous and proud sons, since you all planned together to dishonor me. Wasn't there anyone else in Rome that you could mock other than Saturnine? This stunt perfectly matches your ridiculous brag that I begged you to give me the empire. 

TITUS ANDRONICUS

O monstrous! what reproachful words are these?

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Oh, monstrous! Why are you saying these cruel things to me? 

SATURNINUS

But go thy ways; go, give that changing piece To him that flourish'd for her with his sword A valiant son-in-law thou shalt enjoy; One fit to bandy with thy lawless sons, To ruffle in the commonwealth of Rome.

SATURNINUS

But go away; go give your silly daughter to the man who waved his sword around for her. You'll have a brave son-in-law, one fit to squabble with your law-breaking sons, disturbing the peace in Rome. 

TITUS ANDRONICUS

These words are razors to my wounded heart.

TITUS ANDRONICUS

These words cut my wounded heart like knives. 

SATURNINUS

And therefore, lovely Tamora, queen of Goths, That like the stately Phoebe 'mongst her nymphs Dost overshine the gallant'st dames of Rome, If thou be pleased with this my sudden choice, Behold, I choose thee, Tamora, for my bride, And will create thee empress of Rome, Speak, Queen of Goths, dost thou applaud my choice? And here I swear by all the Roman gods, Sith priest and holy water are so near And tapers burn so bright and every thing In readiness for Hymenaeus stand, I will not re-salute the streets of Rome, Or climb my palace, till from forth this place I lead espoused my bride along with me.

SATURNINUS

And so, lovely Tamora, Queen of Goths—that, like Phoebe among her nymphs, outshines all the loveliest women of Rome—if you accept my sudden proposal, I choose you, Tamora, for my wife, and will make you empress of Rome. Say something, Queen of Goths, do you approve of my choice? And I promise by all the Roman gods, since we have the priest, the holy water, and the candles here already, I won't go out into the streets of Rome or to my palace until we're married. 

TAMORA

And here, in sight of heaven, to Rome I swear, If Saturnine advance the Queen of Goths, She will a handmaid be to his desires, A loving nurse, a mother to his youth.

TAMORA

And here, by heaven, I swear to Rome that if Saturnine marries the Queen of Goths, she will be a servant to his desires, a loving nurse, and a mother to his youth.

SATURNINUS

Ascend, fair queen, Pantheon. Lords, accompany Your noble emperor and his lovely bride, Sent by the heavens for Prince Saturnine, Whose wisdom hath her fortune conquered: There shall we consummate our spousal rites.

SATURNINUS

Come up, my fair queen, and let's go to the Pantheon. Lords, come with your noble emperor and his lovely bride, sent from heaven to Prince Saturnine, who has wisely looked past her misfortune—there we will be married. 

Exeunt all but TITUS

TITUS ANDRONICUS

I am not bid to wait upon this bride.Titus, when wert thou wont to walk alone,Dishonour'd thus, and challenged of wrongs?

TITUS ANDRONICUS

I am not asked to go with them. Titus, when was the last time you walked alone, dishonored and accused of doing wrong? 

Re-enter MARCUS, LUCIUS, QUINTUS, and MARTIUS

MARCUS ANDRONICUS

O Titus, see, O, see what thou hast done!In a bad quarrel slain a virtuous son.

MARCUS ANDRONICUS

Oh, Titus, see, oh, see what you have done! In a rash fight you've killed a virtuous son. 

TITUS ANDRONICUS

No, foolish tribune, no; no son of mine, Nor thou, nor these, confederates in the deed That hath dishonour'd all our family; Unworthy brother, and unworthy sons!

TITUS ANDRONICUS

No, foolish tribune, no; he was no son of mine, nor are you, nor these, who participated in dishonoring our family. Unworthy brother, and unworthy sons! 

LUCIUS

But let us give him burial, as becomes;Give Mutius burial with our brethren.

LUCIUS

But at least let us bury him, as we should; give Mutius burial with our brothers.

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Traitors, away! he rests not in this tomb: This monument five hundred years hath stood, Which I have sumptuously re-edified: Here none but soldiers and Rome's servitors Repose in fame; none basely slain in brawls: Bury him where you can; he comes not here.

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Traitors, go away! He won't rest in this tomb: this monument has stood for five hundred years, and I have restored it at great expense, and only Rome's soldiers and servants are buried here in here, not those killed in low street fights. Bury him wherever you want, since he won't be buried here. 

MARCUS ANDRONICUS

My lord, this is impiety in you:My nephew Mutius' deeds do plead for himHe must be buried with his brethren.

MARCUS ANDRONICUS

My lord, this is not fair. My nephew Mutius did something honorable; he must be buried with his brothers. 

MARTIUS

And shall, or him we will accompany.

MARTIUS

And he shall, or we'll go with him to the grave. 

TITUS ANDRONICUS

'And shall!' what villain was it that spakethat word?

TITUS ANDRONICUS

"And shall!" What villain said that?

QUINTUS

He that would vouch it in any place but here.

QUINTUS

He that would fight for it in any place less holy than here. 

TITUS ANDRONICUS

What, would you bury him in my despite?

TITUS ANDRONICUS

What, would you bury him here without my permission? 

MARCUS ANDRONICUS

No, noble Titus, but entreat of theeTo pardon Mutius and to bury him.

MARCUS ANDRONICUS

No, noble Titus, but we beg you to pardon Mutius and bury him. 

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Marcus, even thou hast struck upon my crest, And, with these boys, mine honour thou hast wounded: My foes I do repute you every one; So, trouble me no more, but get you gone.

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Marcus, even you are against me; and with these boys, you've wounded my honor. You're all my enemies, so don't bother me anymore, but go away. 

MARTIUS

He is not with himself; let us withdraw.

MARTIUS

He is not himself; let's go. 

QUINTUS

Not I, till Mutius' bones be buried.

QUINTUS

I won't go until we've buried Mutius. 

MARCUS and the Sons of TITUS kneel

MARCUS ANDRONICUS

Brother, for in that name doth nature plead,—

MARCUS ANDRONICUS

Brother, for that word reminds you of the natural ties between us—

QUINTUS

Father, and in that name doth nature speak,—

QUINTUS

Father, and in that word nature speaks too—

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Speak thou no more, if all the rest will speed.

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Don't say anything else, if this is going where I think it is. 

MARCUS ANDRONICUS

Renowned Titus, more than half my soul,—

MARCUS ANDRONICUS

Famous Titus, more than half my soul— 

LUCIUS

Dear father, soul and substance of us all,—

LUCIUS

Dear father, soul and body of us all—

MARCUS ANDRONICUS

Suffer thy brother Marcus to inter His noble nephew here in virtue's nest, That died in honour and Lavinia's cause. Thou art a Roman; be not barbarous: The Greeks upon advice did bury Ajax That slew himself; and wise Laertes' son Did graciously plead for his funerals: Let not young Mutius, then, that was thy joy Be barr'd his entrance here.

MARCUS ANDRONICUS

Let your brother Marcus bury his noble nephew here with honor, since he died for Lavinia's cause. You are a Roman; don't be uncivilized. The Greeks buried Ajax, although he killed himself, after wise Laertes's son begged for a funeral: so don't let young Mutius, who you loved, be prevented from joining his brothers. 

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Rise, Marcus, rise. The dismall'st day is this that e'er I saw, To be dishonour'd by my sons in Rome! Well, bury him, and bury me the next.

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Get up, Marcus, get up. This is the saddest day I ever saw, to be dishonored by my sons in Rome! Well, bury him, and bury me next. 

MUTIUS is put into the tomb

LUCIUS

There lie thy bones, sweet Mutius, with thy friends,Till we with trophies do adorn thy tomb.

LUCIUS

Lie there, sweet Mutius, with your friends, until we cover your tomb with trophies won in battle. 

ALL

[Kneeling] No man shed tears for noble Mutius;He lives in fame that died in virtue's cause.

ALL

[Kneeling] Let no one cry for noble Mutius, since the person who dies fighting for what's right will live forever in memory. 

MARCUS ANDRONICUS

My lord, to step out of these dreary dumps,How comes it that the subtle Queen of GothsIs of a sudden thus advanced in Rome?

MARCUS ANDRONICUS

My lord, to leave these sad thoughts behind: how did it happen that the clever Queen of Goths is suddenly our empress? 

TITUS ANDRONICUS

I know not, Marcus; but I know it is, Whether by device or no, the heavens can tell: Is she not then beholding to the man That brought her for this high good turn so far? Yes, and will nobly him remunerate.

TITUS ANDRONICUS

I don't know, Marcus; but I know it's happened, and whether by some trickery or not, only the heavens can tell. But shouldn't she feel grateful to the man who has raised her so high? Yes, and she'll respond in kind. 

Flourish. Re-enter, from one side, SATURNINUS attended, TAMORA, DEMETRIUS, CHIRON and AARON; from the other, BASSIANUS, LAVINIA, and others

SATURNINUS

So, Bassianus, you have play'd your prize:God give you joy, sir, of your gallant bride!

SATURNINUS

So, Bassianus, you have won your prize. God make you happy with your lovely bride!

BASSIANUS

And you of yours, my lord! I say no more,Nor wish no less; and so, I take my leave.

BASSIANUS

And you with yours, my lord! I have nothing else to say, and don't wish you any less, so I'll go now. 

SATURNINUS

Traitor, if Rome have law or we have power,Thou and thy faction shall repent this rape.

SATURNINUS

Traitor, if there's law in Rome or if we have power, you and your brothers will regret this rape. 

BASSIANUS

Rape, call you it, my lord, to seize my own, My truth-betrothed love and now my wife? But let the laws of Rome determine all; Meanwhile I am possess'd of that is mine.

BASSIANUS

You call it rape, my lord, to take my own, my true love and fiancee and now my wife? But let the law of Rome take its course; in the meantime, I have what is mine. 

SATURNINUS

'Tis good, sir: you are very short with us;But, if we live, we'll be as sharp with you.

SATURNINUS

All right, sir, you are very rude to us. But, if we live, you might find that I can be as sharp with you. 

BASSIANUS

My lord, what I have done, as best I may, Answer I must and shall do with my life. Only thus much I give your grace to know: By all the duties that I owe to Rome, This noble gentleman, Lord Titus here, Is in opinion and in honour wrong'd; That in the rescue of Lavinia With his own hand did slay his youngest son, In zeal to you and highly moved to wrath To be controll'd in that he frankly gave: Receive him, then, to favor, Saturnine, That hath express'd himself in all his deeds A father and a friend to thee and Rome.

BASSIANUS

My lord, I'll answer for what I've done, with my life if I must. But I'll just say this: I swear by my duty to Rome that this noble gentleman, Lord Titus here, has suffered a wrong at your hands. In the rescue of Lavinia, he killed his youngest son out of loyalty to you and in anger at being forced to go back on his word. Favor him, then, Saturnine, since he's proven himself in everything he does to be a father and friend to you and Rome. 

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Prince Bassianus, leave to plead my deeds: 'Tis thou and those that have dishonour'd me. Rome and the righteous heavens be my judge, How I have loved and honour'd Saturnine!

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Prince Bassianus, I can defend myself without your help; it's you and your friends who have dishonored me. Rome and heaven above know my love and loyalty to Saturnine! 

TAMORA

My worthy lord, if ever Tamora Were gracious in those princely eyes of thine, Then hear me speak in indifferently for all; And at my suit, sweet, pardon what is past.

TAMORA

My worthy lord, if you ever loved Tamora, then let me speak as a neutral party. At my request, sweetheart, forgive what's in the past. 

SATURNINUS

What, madam! be dishonour'd openly,And basely put it up without revenge?

SATURNINUS

What, madam! Can I put up with these insults?

TAMORA

Not so, my lord; the gods of Rome forfend I should be author to dishonour you! But on mine honour dare I undertake For good Lord Titus' innocence in all; Whose fury not dissembled speaks his griefs: Then, at my suit, look graciously on him; Lose not so noble a friend on vain suppose, Nor with sour looks afflict his gentle heart. [Aside to SATURNINUS] be won at last; Dissemble all your griefs and discontents: You are but newly planted in your throne; Lest, then, the people, and patricians too, Upon a just survey, take Titus' part, And so supplant you for ingratitude, Which Rome reputes to be a heinous sin, Yield at entreats; and then let me alone: I'll find a day to massacre them all And raze their faction and their family, The cruel father and his traitorous sons, To whom I sued for my dear son's life, And make them know what 'tis to let a queen Kneel in the streets and beg for grace in vain. [Aloud] Come, come, sweet emperor; come, Andronicus; Take up this good old man, and cheer the heart That dies in tempest of thy angry frown.

TAMORA

Of course not, my lord; the gods of Rome forbid that I would urge you to do anything dishonorable! But I vouch for good Lord Titus's innocence in everything; you can see his grief on his face. Then, at my request, forgive him. Don't lose a noble friend out of suspicion, or hurt his soft heart with angry looks. 

[So only SATURNINUS can hear] Listen to me: hide what you're feeling. You just took the throne—so, unless you want the people and patricians to take Titus's side, and unseat you for not being grateful to him (and Romans hate ingratitude), forgive him. And then let me work: I'll find a day to kill them all. I'll destroy their faction and family, the cruel father and his traitorous sons—to whom I begged for my son's life. I'll make them know what happens to those who let a queen kneel in the streets and beg in vain. 

[To all] Come, come, sweet emperor; come, Andronicus. Raise up this good old man, and cheer him up, since he's miserable when you frown at him. 

SATURNINUS

Rise, Titus, rise; my empress hath prevail'd.

SATURNINUS

Rise, Titus, rise; my empress has convinced me.

TITUS ANDRONICUS

I thank your majesty, and her, my lord:These words, these looks, infuse new life in me.

TITUS ANDRONICUS

I thank your majesty, and her, my lord. These words and looks of forgiveness give new life to me. 

TAMORA

Titus, I am incorporate in Rome, A Roman now adopted happily, And must advise the emperor for his good. This day all quarrels die, Andronicus; And let it be mine honour, good my lord, That I have reconciled your friends and you. For you, Prince Bassianus, I have pass'd My word and promise to the emperor, That you will be more mild and tractable. And fear not lords, and you, Lavinia; By my advice, all humbled on your knees, You shall ask pardon of his majesty.

TAMORA

Titus, I am now a Roman, and must give the emperor good advice. Let's forget all our past quarrels today, Andronicus; and let it be my chief accomplishment that I've brought you all back together. For you, Prince Bassianus, I have promised the emperor that you'll be more mild and obedient in the future. And don't be afraid, lords, and you, Lavinia: take my advice, kneel down, and ask his majesty for forgiveness. 

LUCIUS

We do, and vow to heaven and to his highness,That what we did was mildly as we might,Tendering our sister's honour and our own.

LUCIUS

[Kneeling] We do, and promise heaven and his highness, that we were as moderate as we could be, when our sister's honor and our own was at stake. 

MARCUS ANDRONICUS

That, on mine honour, here I do protest.

MARCUS ANDRONICUS

[Kneeling] I vow that too, on my honor. 

SATURNINUS

Away, and talk not; trouble us no more.

SATURNINUS

Go away, and be quiet; don't bother us anymore. 

TAMORA

Nay, nay, sweet emperor, we must all be friends:The tribune and his nephews kneel for grace;I will not be denied: sweet heart, look back.

TAMORA

No, no, sweet emperor; we must all be friends. The tribune and his nephews kneel for forgiveness. I won't be denied: sweetheart, look at them.

SATURNINUS

Marcus, for thy sake and thy brother's here, And at my lovely Tamora's entreats, I do remit these young men's heinous faults: Stand up. Lavinia, though you left me like a churl, I found a friend, and sure as death I swore I would not part a bachelor from the priest. Come, if the emperor's court can feast two brides, You are my guest, Lavinia, and your friends. This day shall be a love-day, Tamora.

SATURNINUS

Marcus, for the sake of you and your brother, and because Tamora begs me, I forgive these young men's crimes against me. Stand up. Lavinia, though you left me harshly, I would not have found my love if you hadn't: I swore that I wouldn't walk away from the priest without a wife. Come, if the emperor's court will celebrate two brides, you'll be my guest, Lavinia, and your family. This day will be a love-day, Tamora. 

TITUS ANDRONICUS

To-morrow, an it please your majestyTo hunt the panther and the hart with me,With horn and hound we'll give your grace bonjour.

TITUS ANDRONICUS

Tomorrow, if your majesty likes, we can go hunting for panther and deer. We'll wake you with the sounds of our dogs and horns. 

SATURNINUS

Be it so, Titus, and gramercy too.

SATURNINUS

We will come, Titus, and many thanks to you.

Flourish. Exeunt

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Eve houghton
About the Translator: Eve Houghton

Eve Houghton graduated from Yale College in 2017 and is currently pursuing the MPhil in Renaissance Literature at the University of Cambridge. In 2018, she will return to Yale to begin her PhD in English. Her research interests include early modern commonplace books and note-taking practices, paratexts, reception studies, and the history of reading.