Andronicus. Haile Rome: Victorious in thy Mourning Weedes: Loe as the Barke that hath discharg'd his fraught, Returnes with precious lading to the Bay, From whence at first she weigh'd her Anchorage: Commeth Andronicus bound with Lawrell bowes, To resalute his Country with his teares, Teares of true ioy for his returne to Rome, Thou great defender of this Capitoll, Stand gracious to the Rites that we intend. Romaines, of fiue and twenty Valiant Sonnes, Halfe of the number that King Priam had, Behold the poore remaines aliue and dead! These that Suruiue, let Rome reward with Loue: These that I bring vnto their latest home, With buriall amongst their Auncestors. Heere Gothes haue giuen me leaue to sheath my Sword: Titus vnkinde, and carelesse of thine owne, Why suffer'st thou thy Sonnes vnburied yet, To houer on the dreadfull shore of Stix? Make way to lay them by their Bretheren.
They open the Tombe.
There greete in silence as the dead are wont, And sleepe in peace, slaine in your Countries warres: O sacred receptacle of my ioyes, Sweet Cell of vertue and Nobilitie, How many Sonnes of mine hast thou in store, That thou wilt neuer render to me more? Luc. Giue vs the proudest prisoner of the Gothes, That we may hew his limbes, and on a pile Ad manus fratrum, sacrifice his flesh: Before this earthly prison of their bones, That so the shadowes be not vnappeas'd, Nor we disturb'd with prodigies on earth
Tit. I giue him you, the Noblest that Suruiues, The eldest Son of this distressed Queene
Tam. Stay Romaine Bretheren, gracious Conqueror, Victorious Titus, rue the teares I shed, A Mothers teares in passion for her sonne: And if thy Sonnes were euer deere to thee, Oh thinke my sonnes to be as deere to mee. Sufficeth not, that we are brought to Rome To beautifie thy Triumphs, and returne Captiue to thee, and to thy Romaine yoake, But must my Sonnes be slaughtred in the streetes, For Valiant doings in their Countries cause? O! If to fight for King and Common-weale, Were piety in thine, it is in these: Andronicus, staine not thy Tombe with blood. Wilt thou draw neere the nature of the Gods? Draw neere them then in being mercifull. Sweet mercy is Nobilities true badge, Thrice Noble Titus, spare my first borne sonne
Tit. Patient your selfe Madam, and pardon me. These are the Brethren, whom you Gothes beheld Aliue and dead, and for their Bretheren slaine, Religiously they aske a sacrifice: To this your sonne is markt, and die he must, T' appease their groaning shadowes that are gone
Luc. Away with him, and make a fire straight, And with our Swords vpon a pile of wood, Let's hew his limbes till they be cleane consum'd.
Exit Sonnes with Alarbus.
Tamo. O cruell irreligious piety
Chi. Was euer Scythia halfe so barbarous? Dem. Oppose me Scythia to ambitious Rome, Alarbus goes to rest, and we suruiue, To tremble vnder Titus threatning lookes. Then Madam stand resolu'd, but hope withall, The selfe same Gods that arm'd the Queene of Troy With opportunitie of sharpe reuenge Vpon the Thracian Tyrant in his Tent, May fauour Tamora the Queene of Gothes, (When Gothes were Gothes, and Tamora was Queene) To quit the bloody wrongs vpon her foes. Enter the Sonnes of Andronicus againe.
Luci. See Lord and Father, how we haue perform'd Our Romaine rightes, Alarbus limbs are lopt, And intrals feede the sacrifising fire, Whole smoke like incense doth perfume the skie. Remaineth nought but to interre our Brethren, And with low'd Larums welcome them to Rome