Excerpt from

The Traitor

by James Shirley

    Sciarra.   Death's a devouring gamester,
And sweeps up all ; —what think'st thou of an eye ?
Couldst thou spare one, and think the blemish recompensed
To see me safe with the other ? or a hand—
This white hand, that hath so often
With admiration trembled on the lute,
Till we have pray'd thee leave the strings awhile,
And laid our ears close to thy ivory fingers,
Suspecting all the harmony proceeded
From their own motion without the need
Of any dull or passive instrument ? —
No, Amidea ; thou shalt not bear one scar,
To buy my life ; the sickle shall not touch
A flower, that grows so fair upon his stalk. . . .
Thy other hand will miss a white companion,
And wither on thy arm.   What then can I
Expect from thee to save me ?   I would live
And owe my life to thee, so 'twere not bought
Too dear.

Garnett, Richard and Edmund Gosse, Eds.
English Literature, An Illustrated Record. Vol 2, Part 2.
New York: The Macmillan Company, 1904.  362-363.


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