The Famous Chinois: OR THE LOVES of Several of the FRENCH NOBILITY, under borrowed names. VVith a Key annexed.

LONDON, Printed by E. O. for Thomas Dring at the white Lion next Chancery Lane end in Fleetstreet, 1669.

TO EUDORA.

THe Famous Chi­nois comes, as obliged, to­waite upon you in a habit of English phrase: putting him into which I have in the general taken patern, measure and materials from that which was some years since made him in Frenth [Page] by Monsieur Du Ball; but, (if I may say so without suspicion, of arro­gating or detracting as well as without guilt of it) not without more pains in particulars than Transla­tours commonly take, or else use to have ascribed to them. I have thus em­ployed some months, because I have not had opportuni­ty of atcheiving more ele­vated studies, because I would not for my own sa­tisfaction leave unfinisht what I was by the com­mendation of others indu­ced to begin, and because [Page] though there are abroad se­veral historicall discourses very ravishingly and ad­vantageously composed of Loves and Gallantries, they for the most part have come out of the shop of inventive fansy, but this under a Romanticke colour and fa­shion records not only very considerable traverses and events of the same kinde, but those also as true as considerable, and no where else to be found. Whether my pains are worth either their own time, or that of perusing them, I submit to your examination and [Page] judgement, whose sageness and Candour together with the other transcending be­auties, which shine in you, in a high degree concile to you the admirations and obser­vances of all that know you, but of none in a higher, than of Eleutherius.

The First BOOK.

AT length the great Alcidor no longer able to endure that Certafilan should so absolutely enjoy Astatia, Solicited her to consent, that he might again convey her out of his ingrossing hands; and She indeed loved the Author of this Advice with too much Flame to be backward to comply with him in any thing that was honest and that admitted a plausible excuse: but when She came seriously to con­sider the Quality and Consequence of this Second Rape, She could finde no Praetext that was Tolerable with which to favour it. The Reasons which moved Her to disallow his Demands, and with which She endea­voured to silence them, were, that She had no more any cause to complain of Certafilan, who treated Her with more sweetness than [Page 2] She cared for, that She could not forsake Him without makeing the King and Her Sister Her Enemies, without indeed work­ing the ruine of her Honor and Comfort, and that She hoped they should in time have Liberty of seeing and Entertaining one another at their Pleasure, without Her running away from Him, considering that He kept Her not Company so closely as He was wont, and besides was no longer jea­lous. Nothing could have come more strange to the Lovers Mind than did these arguings of his Mistress; He took them not only for a flat Denial of what He had begged, but also for an unquestionable Assurance that She no longer Loved Him: and hurried away with this Opinion, all in a rage he flung from her without vouchsafeing her any Reply. This his Indignation was as wounding to Her, as Her reasoning had been offensive to Him; it struck deep into her Heart, and moved it from the bottom. But She considered that it Impor­ted Her not to be troubled at it, so as to be taken notice off, She therefore made use of all Her forces to undergoe it so as became Her. But what with Her Inquietudes which grew Riotous, and what with the con­straint which She Exercised upon Her self [Page 3] to suppress them, She so much indammaged Her Health that She within few houres went sick to Bed. Where having lain two dayes without Alcidor, who had know­ledge of it, shewing himself not at all con­cerned in it (as indeed looking upon it as Counterfeit) swallowing down the Affront which She could not chew upon without a most exasperating disgust, She gave Her Page the charge of the ensuing Letter and bringing back an Answer.

Astasia to Alcidor.

WHat have I ever done against you to Merit the Pain which You make Me endure? Have You observed in Me one sole Motion tending to displease or disoblige You? If when You Propounded to Me a second Flight, I freely, yet cooly represented to You the Reasons by which I ought to be kept from it, is this a Crime which deserves to be punisht with so much Severity? I well know You have not to this hour been at all toucht with My Illness, and yet I cannot forbear telling You that Your Displeasure has well-nigh brought Me to the Grave. To hear Me as You have done, to have notice of my Indisposition, to be Conscious to your self tbat you are the cause of [Page 4] it, and not in the least to be moved at it, to think of this, Oh me! Afflicts Me to the utmost Point. I can go no farther, and if Your unkindness continue, know that with the loss of Your Affection You will quickly see that of My Life.

Though at the instant of Reading these Words, Alcidor's Heart felt it self melt with Compassion, he nevertheless made it appear to him that brought them, as if they were altogether indifferent to him, and he at first sent him away without an answer, but having considered that this was too roughly to handle Astasia, he caused him to be called back and gave him This.

Alcidor to Astasia.

YOu doe me wrong to name the just re­sentment which I have of Your cold­ness an over severe Punishment. For if You well consider how You have slighted My Loyal Passion, You will acknowledge that had I not taken notice of it, You might deser­vedly have named Me insensible. You have indeed Conferred Favors upon Me which I have Reason to remember with an immortal and an untainted Gratitude, and if I left [Page 5] You without bidding You Adieu, it is the respect that I bare You which Obliged Me to it. Would it have been just for Me to have gone against Your Will, and to have endea­voured by an Opinionative Obstinacy to have forced You to have granted Me that of which You found me unworthy? No, Madam Al­cidor knows better how to live then so, and when it shall come to the loss of his Life, He will never contradict it, if You have Ordain­ed it. But that You may know what an Obse­quious Zeal I have for You, only recover your Health and You shall see by the Continu­ation of My Services that I Honor You more than all the World besides.

Though the illness of Astasia was very much augmented before her Page returned, She never the more forbore, when he pre­sented these Lines to Her, to take and Read them, and She took them, Read them, and thought of them with such Hot and Violent Emotions that her Fever Redound­ed and put Her in much worse Condition than She before had been. Of this dange­rous Surcharge of Her Distemper Alcidor staied not long before he was Advertised, and after he was Advertised of it, laying aside all other Displeasure but what that [Page 6] Suggested to him, He staied not at all be­fore [...]e went to see Her [...] Certafilan being at Her Bed-side when he came into her Chamber, he received him with a handsom Courtesie, thankt him for his Care of visi­ting them in their Affliction, and exprest a great contentment to see him, which whither it was as real as it seemed great he could not Judge: Howsoever that which Astasia derived from the sight of him was both real and great, it was far more Evident than that he could make any doubt of it; She was Extasied with it and fell in a Swoon in her Husband's Arms; at which Accident it was Legibly enough written in Alcidor's Looks that his heart was not in much better case than was that of the Intran­ced. But the Remedies that were used bringing her to her self again (and together with her, her Sympathizer also) no sooner al­most had She opened her Eyes, but, Sir, said Certafilan to him, our Company doth my Wifes Health an Injury, let us therefore, if you please, leave her for the Present and return to her when She is in a better Capacity. If I knew my self so unhappy, Replied Alcidor to him, as to increase the illness of those whom I Visit, rather than doe them that Mischief, I would all my [Page 7] Life forbid my self the sight of them, and since you are of the Opinion that my Pre­sence brings a Detriment to your Lady, I leave both her and your self to your Repo­ses. By this his Reply Certafilan perceive­ing that what he had said had too sharply Prickt him, he endeavoured by Excuses and Blandishments to heal the hurt that he had made, but whatsoever Skill he used in the Endeavour he could not hinder him from going away in Displeasure.

The Lover was indeed from this time, putting all things into the Ballance together, so Ill satisfied with the Husbands humour, that to give it no more Umbrage he resol­ved, not only to go no more to his House, but also to deface out of his Soul all those Draughts which the Beauty of his Wife had Ingraved there. In Favour of this de­signe he set himself on work to survey the more lovely Faces of Paquin, that so by their Variety or by the Prevalency of some one of them he might be brought to forget that which he had a while adicted himself to, but which now he wholly quitted to its Uncommunicative Proprietary: and of all, which in that his Copious Prospect came under his Consideration, he was not long before he concluded Carmelia the most wor­thy [Page 8] of his Vows. That therefore he might have Liberty of Visiting her without suspi­on he tyed himself in so straight a friendship with her Husband Clidantus that there was hardly in all the Court to be seen its Parallel. By which means he and that Fair having a Frequent Converse, if his glowing heats for her soon grew to a burning Fever of Passion, She also quickly began to languish with a Disease which made her as much need him for her Physician as he did her for his.

These new Loves knocking at Astasia's Eares, She was so far from Frowning upon them, that She with Smiles and from her heart bad them Welcom. Her Sentiments were indeed since her Sickness turned so contrary to what they had before been, that in the place of Amorous Passion She had no­thing any longer for Alcidor but an Amicable care of his good. When the Forces of his Merit at any time Assaulted her, She by the Rules and helps of Prudent Vertue so Resolutely and Dextrously defended her­self against them that they could gain no­thing upon her more than to make her ad­mire in the Creature the Creators Magni­ficence. When She thought of what had past between them, I should be ready to [Page 9] suspect, said she to her self, that Alcidor would throw Dirt upon my Name, but that I am strongly assured that he hath more both of Wisdom and Generosity then to Defame a Woman who hath by more than Ordinary Respects Obliged him to her. Be­sides what Credit would he get in leading a Triumph over my Weakness and setting up Trophies of an Advantage which my little resistance enabled him to acquire? Only Glorious Victories are to be published and not such as disgrace both the Vanquish­ed and Vanquisher together. Yet let us Write to him to let him see that I, from my Soul renounce all former Pleasures, and that I doe so because I preferre my happy­ness before my Destruction. Accordingly She thus drest a Paper and sent it by Garinter.

Astasia to Alcidor.

YOu ought not to take it ill if having Glory to gain by my good Works, I re­pent of haveing committed ill ones. We may by reason of our Frailty sometimes fall, but being by the Benigne care of Heaven raised up again, it is our Duty incessantly to Act thanks to the Author of our Deliverance. This is that wherein I propose Sedulously to employ my self for the Future, and upon that account [Page 10] the Abode in which I at present as Innocently as Lonesomely lead my Life, is more agree­able to me, than the Palace of our Kings. See how I intend to pass the rest of my Dayes with Certafilan whose Carriage is become so Unblameable that I have great Reason both to admire his happy Change and to content my self with it.

Alcidor having read these Tearms was glad to understand that she who wrote them would not disturb his new Affections nor be disturbed by them, and having weighed as well as read them he Drew this Answer to them, and sent it away by him that brought them.

Alcidor to Astasia.

I Must be void of a Humane Soul not to ap­prove your Holyness of Life, and though your Graces have made deeper Impressions upon my Mind than I can quickly blot out, I shall not­withstanding endeavour to have no other thoughts of them than such as my Conscience may in Justice allow. See, Madam, if in whatsoever Condition you are I have not a se­rious Ambition of satisfying you: Nor am I so much an Enemy to mine own Happyness as [Page 11] not to go in search of it by a Life which shall suddenly conform it self to yours.

Garinter gone Alcidor went to Carmelia who waited for him to go along with her to see her Husband at the Waters. Being alone when he entred her Chamber, It is indeed, Sir, said she to him, a very Libe­ral expression of your Goodness that at my Husbands Intreaty you will Accompany me to the Place to whicb you have so lately given a Title by the Kind and Noble Rape which you Acted there: But not finding her there whom you carried thence every Mi­nute of your stay, will be an houre of tedi­ousness to you. There being no Object in the World so Amiable to me, nor Com­pany so dear as you. Madam, replied Al­cidor to her, Judge again and say if I shall not account the Dayes which I shall pass in your Presence shorter than hours, but al­so sweeter than Moneths spent any where else. We know you are an excellent Artist of Rallery, interrupted him, Carmelia, without being thus informed of it, but re­member that you in earnest wrong Astasia, when you though only in jest use Courtship to any other Woman. Let us speak no more of Astasia, returned Alcidor, for she [Page 12] is no more to be reckoned of the World, having withdrawn and [...]hut her self up in a Solitude for the remainder of her Life. That so Conspicuous a Starre as Astasia, said Carmelia again, should of her own choise leave the clear and eminent Orb of the Court, where her Sister also moves with most prevailing Splendors and Influences, and for altogether betake herself to the ob­scure Station of a Rural Privacy is a story of much more Rarity and Wonder than that I should easily believe it, did any other but your self tell me it. I never spake any thing more true, said Alcidor: And I ne­ver heard any thing more strange, said Carmelia, more strange, adjoyned she, than that the Fair can live content in a se­paration from Alcidor who is looked upon as her Heart and Soul. I know not, said Alcidor, what Immaginations thr World hath either of her or me; but this I can faithfully assure you, our Conversation was never but very innocent and unblameable, and I conveighed her not away but with the King's Approbation. I am not about, re­turned Carm [...]lia, to make an ill Judgment of her, whom, notwithstanding that her Husbands jealousie hath made more than a few of the Oppinion that you have had an [Page 13] absolute Power over her and governed her according to your Mind, I have always believed to be entirely sage and to have steered her Conversation with an unre­proachable Discretion. Certafilan himself, said Alcidor, hath by the change of his Mind, loudly confest the injustice of those suspicions which he had of her Vertue, and their reconciliation makes it sufficiently ap­pear that it was nothing but his undiserved mistrustfulness and headlong Frenzy which carried him to treat her so ill as he did, and nothing but his treating her so ill that caused her to take that course that she did. And indeed, adjoyned Carmelia, whatso­ever ignorant or over Critical People may say, I am altogether of the Mind that a Woman is very excuseable in doing what may be thought disrespectful to her Hus­band, when he without any apparent rea­son but out of a Giddy Undiscerning Rash­ness, or an Exceptious Peevish Dispositi­on, passeth a Contumelious Sentence upon her honesty. Not but that I know that the greatest part of the Men of this Age are possest with the immagination that the more Fair a Woman is, the less Chast she is, as if Nature never formed a Person more than usually handsom, but to be more than [Page 14] commonly Vitious. This is, said Alcidor, one of the grossest abuses that a Mind can possibly be seduced with, and I cannot think that any Man will leave himself to the sur­prize of it, Who is not so much a Fool that he knows not how to distinguish between desert and default. For what appearance does it carry of Truth that Organs well disposed in an Elegant Body should be sub­ject to act less Vigorously in what is good than what is placed in a body of a meaner Fashion, especially considering that they whose form challengeth a Veneration for them have far more Advantages and En­couragements to do well than they who be­ing exposed to contempt by their outsides have little care taken of them and can pro­cure little regard to be had, either to their Persons or their Actions. Of your Mind is my Husband, said Carmelia, and I have often heard him say that the more beautiful he saw a Woman, the more he esteemed her Retained and sober. I have, howso­ever, Madam, resumed Alcidor, for a long time observed it to be true, that there is scarce any evil that rageth with so wild a Vi­olence, that so hardly admits of a remedy, and that produces such sad and dismal effects as does the poyson of jealousie, especially [Page 15] when drunk in by a Man of Quallity and Stomach; all Theatres are died with the Bloud of its Tragoedies, To such a height of Fury indeed, said Carmelia, does this Malady use to carry him whom it possesses that rarely he can be cured but either by his own death or that of the Person at whom he takes offence. But, thanks to my kind Destiny, I have a Husband of whom I have not the least fear that he should ever be in­fected with this so mischeivously fatal Plague. We see much stranger things come to pass, said Alcidor, than that there should be some Vassal of your Beauty who should pay homage to it otherwise (though Vertuously too) than Clidantus should think convenient. But should there be some such Man (as what Husband can hinder another Man from honoring his Wife above all other Women?) and Clidantus should nor only take it ill, but also interdict you his company, What in that case would you resolve upon? Not to see the Person that might be suspected by him, answered Carme­lia, that so I might remove from him all argument of afflicting himself and me. Would you then, said Alcidor, commit such an injustice as to slight them that ho­nored you in favour of a distrustful quarrel­some [Page 16] Husband? I could not be accused of any injustice, or of any slighting in doing so, replied Carmelia, because I did it not but by constraint and out of necessary con­siderations of my Repose, my Reputation and my Duty. I should indeed reckon that it behoved me to put in practice all the ex­pedients which I could have any hope would restore to a good temper him who was in so ill a one: But if I found them all unavail­able, and that he would still persecute me notwithstanding all that I could do to oblige him to the contrary, I would no longer make any Difficulty of seperating my self from him. So Astasia, said Alcidor, cannot be in equity blamed for quitting Certafilan when she saw that by nothing that either she her self or others could either say or do he would be restrained from abusing her, and if you at any time should do the like, forct to it as she was, your Vertue will appear not at all the less, since reasonably one cannot dislike unfortunates for seeking to affranchize themselves from their pressures. If I have spoken any thing to the disadvan­tage of Astasia, said Carmelia, you have cause to reprehend me for it; but tell me, I intreat you, what cause you have to im­magine that a wise Man as is Clidantus and [Page 17] that loves me with all his heart as he does should ever turn Fool as did Certafilan, and by his unmerciful persecution of me, should drive me to tread the same path that did Astasia. As I have not Beauty nor other alectives, so no beliefe that any Man can have such regards for me, as that thence his fancy should have any thing of shaddow to vex it self about. How in saying so, Ma­dam, interrupted her Alcidor, do you wrong heaven together with your self disowning the abundant wealth of Graces which its goodness hath bestowed upon you. But, I must beg leave farther to tell you that as you are at a great distance lovely above others; so you are very far above others beloved, I am one that love you so, and the chains, which fetter my heart in this Affection are embodied into it and grown a much dearer part of it than that I should be willing to part with them for all the Freedom with which the World can tempt me. You are come I see, interrupted him Carmelia not so much to give me your Company as to make your self sport in jeering me. It is surely no making my self sport, nor jeering of you, return­ed Alcidor, to speak highly of that which every body that knows you prizes highly, and tell you that I adore you as with a most [Page 18] Profound reverence I do, I am come to wait upon you in your journey; and withall to gain an opportunity of declaring to you that my passion, which hath a great while been kept in by the awe in which I stand of you, but which now breaks its way out by its own greatness and force. If the discovery have any thing criminal in it, inflict upon me what punishment you shall think fit, I shall make no appeal from your sentence, so long as I know that my Torment contents you. Know then, said Carmelia, to what I condemn you; It is to live with me as you have been wont without speaking to me of Love or Passion, it being certain that you are either free from them, or if their stroke hath reacht you, it is by the vertue of Astasia's Merrit, not of mine, which I am conscious is too weak to take the meanest and most facile heart Prisoner, much less is it able to subdue yours. To these words Alcidor making answer, first with most Eloquent sighs and silence, then with most earnest and winning protestations, that his heart was all an entire piece of De­votion to her and to none but her; she chang­ed her stile and told him that because she would put him to no more trouble she would endeavour to believe what he had said. En­couraged with this concession, he imprinted [Page 19] a flaming Kiss upon her hand; which she not discountenancing, he industrously pursued his point with other Galantryes, and for his success evidently read it in her looks and silence that she was very well pleased with them, but withall as much ashamed as plea­sed.

After she had sat a while without speak­ing a word to him, or so much as looking him in the face, seeing Paper with Pen and Ink upon the Table she took the Pen and wrote, I Love, and then, he looking to to see what she wrote, let drop the Pen, and fell a sighing. All which he took notice of; and better understanding the advantage of the occasion than to let it slip, he intreated her to set down the rest of her thought: to which she answering that it was without de­sign, that that word came to hand. He a­gain so earnestly prest her to proceed, telling her that she was too judicious to begin to write, what she had no mind to finish, and that the beginning was too good to remain imperfect, that she resumed the Pen and compleated the Sentence in these termes, I Love Alcidor, if [...]he be Discreet. Having this short, but acceptable line, he broke out into straines of Joy, Thanks and Love, in which he who was at other times wont to [Page 20] excell others, now Farre excelled himself. To repart to them, the Lady thought her­self concerned to use such Language as this, I confess it is not without Reason that every one esteems you, Alcidor; you have power­ful means to render your self Master of hearts, it is not now the first time that I knew it, and since the Princess Florisa, and the sweet Astasia hath been overcome by, and been glad to yeild to those your Powers, it cannot surely be ill thought of if I also am surprized by them. If what therefore you have told me is true, all my Life shall witness that what I have now written is cer­tain. I confess, I love you, but I withall expect that a vertuous retainedness should have the guidance of your carriage towards me, and if otherwise you at any time prove so unsober as to desire of me, things which my honor permits me not to give you, assure your self you shall carry away nothing of ill intensions, but a denial stamp with in­dignation; for I love my Husband, my Honesty, and my Reputation better than to do anything that may prejudice any of them. Your decree is juster, Madam, replied Alci­dor, than that I should in the least go against it; and I am more effectually yours, than to cease to be so by enterprises disagreeable [Page 21] to you. Having stopt a little at those words, I acknowledge, Madam, went he on, that you may with equity defend me from aspi­ring to those Bli [...]ses, which you have in your power to bestow, but which are too great for the greatest, and of which they who have most worth are unworthy: yet let your charity allow, as it unblameably may, that upon this beautiful Mouth of Ro­ses, and this fair Bosom of Lillies (toge­ther with these words he kist them both) I protest before Love himself, that I will hence forward have no other will but yours. This on-set of Love, gracefully conducted as it was, Carmelia not having the Power to take it ill, That I may not shew my self so severe, said she, in some confusion of affection and modesty, as to deny you what I may honestly grant you, I permit you this familiarity of Kisses, provided they be inno­cent and free from impurity; but this is the greatest personal kindness that you are to expect from me, and that great enough to let you clearly see, I love you to a high de­gree. The priviledge, Madam, returned Alcidor, is of a much Nobler value, than that in the frution of it I should not own my self a most wealthy Man of happyness. More he was going to say, but Felisbea coming [Page 22] into the Chamber interrupted their converse, and they had at that time no more opportu­nity of discourseing of any thing, but the journey which they were about to make to­gether. They nevertheless exprest their hearts to one another by signs as Emphatical as words, and having broken their Fasts, and taken the Road, they there also, though that Sister of Clidantus not a little obstructed their deernesses, frequently transmitted them by stealth to one another, without being at all perceived by her.

Having nothing by the way that molested them and Alcidor all along holding discour­ses with which a very bad humour would have been diverted, they got happily to their Journey's end, and therefore also the more happily because their arrival gave a very sensible mitigation to the illness of Clidantus; he shewed himself more revived by the sight of them, and particularly of Alcidor, than it could be imagined his con­dition was capable of; and during eight dayes after their comming he carried it out well: But he was so sick the ninth that his Physicians began to despiar of his recovery, and he afterwards for many dayes laboured under pains which rendred his life a burthen to him, and which though Carmelia en­tirely [Page 23] loved Alcidor infected her with so much trouble that not he whom she loved so much, could with all his consolatory endea­vours put astop to her tears. In this his con­dition Felisbea took a just and a kind Sister's part but not so much as that uncommon ten­derness which she had alwayes for him would have prompted her to have taken, had her mind been at liberty; but it was called off from sympathizing with Clidantus by being continually taken up in admireing Alcidor. After she had admired him a while she grew big with Love of him, and then restlesly solicitous that he should have an­swerable respects for her. So much he saw by (besides other deports) the sighs and languishing regards which upon all his moti­ons she sent after him. But his inclinations carrying his heart with too rappid a current to Carmelia, to suffer him to think of Felisbea as she desired, he dessembled his under­standing of what he saw, and whatever con­trivances she used (as she used several) to make him know her mind, and conform to it, he carried himself as if he was wholly ignorant of their meaning. This added very much to her anxiety and he who was the occasion of it, was enough con­vinced that he was so, but made shew [Page 24] of believeing that it was all upon the account of her Brother. When therefore she had sufficiently wearied her self with sighing for him, who would not rightly interest himself in it, She perswaded her self that it was re­quisite without any thing of disguise, to lay her heart open before him, and she had pre­sently made her own mouth her agent, and Interpreter of it to him, had not that great portion which she had of honor and Sageness restrained her from it. It was not with a wanton Eye that she looked upon him, the mark at which she aimed was Marriage, that which he never yet shot at, and full of Vertue as she was, she would rather have hugged death than have harbored a thought unworthy of it. But yet withall her de­sires of haveing him for her Husband, had too much Fire in them, to be kept from vent­ing themselves to him and seeking to have the Fuel of [...]his kindness to feed upon. Screwed up by their urgencies, to a confi­dence far above her temper, she took the first opportunity of being with him, and as she was going from him, without his per­cieveing her, let drop at his feet a Paper, which, his Eye quickly lighting upon it and his curiosity prompting him to take it up and peruse it, [...]he found to have these breif con­tents: [Page 25] Alcidor's, qualities are all ravishing and unless one be Marble, one cannot consider him without being wounded for him. If he is not sensible of this, he is not accquainted with himself; his only fault is that he hath an aversion to Marriage which the affections of others and his own Merit and Interests demand of him.

He was at no pains to know whose this note was, he was too well accquainted with the mind and hand of Felisbea not to be cer­tain that it was hers. He was therefore not a little perplext how he should carry him­self towards her, but at length he resolved to coverse with her as formerly without ta­king any notice to her of the writing, but shunning all occasions that might bring him into a particular engagement with her. Go­ing in this mind to her Brothers Chamber where he knew she was, he was no sooner in her Eye, but she was all dyed with blushes and lost in shame. Observing which Emo­tion, he made no shew that he observed it, but, after he had askt Clindatus how he did, entred into a discourse with him and his Lady. She having by that means leisure of recollecting herself, after a few minutes came and sat upon the Bed-side by him, list­ning to his words as to harmonious Oracles, [Page 26] and considering his person and fashion as something more than humane. They had not sat above a quarter of an hour, but there entred visiters to the sick Man; to let whom come up to him, Alcidor and Felisbea drew back and fell into a conversation by them­selves. At the instant the clouds of Felisbea's homor dispersed, and she grew more gay than usually, encouraged by an expectation that Alcidor would entertain her about her Paper. But this was far from his intenti­ons, and he only entertained himself with her about her Brother and the company that was come in; in which terms they were when Clidantus called him to him, to take part in a discourse of rallery which a Lady of very good Ingenij had begun with design of diverting him.

Divided from Alcidor and disappointed of her hopes Felisbea withdrew in distracti­on to her Chamber, where having wept a floud she broke out into such Language as this. No, No, Felisbea, it is in vain that thou strivest to captivate this heard-hearted insensible Man. Canst thou any longer questi­on that he slights thee? Comest thou not from having too experimentall a proof of it? If he made never so little reckoning of thee, would he treat thee with so much [Page 27] cold indifferency? If thy Note which thou sawest him take up had pleased him, would he have been kept from speaking of it to thee? would he have made shew of knowing nothing of it? He took it and read it, but not liking what he read, he would feign him­self ignorant of what he too well knows. It is a folly for thee think to make him thine; he is too much Astasia's, and her attracti­ons hold too absolute a Monarchy over him to let him be any other Womans.

While Felisbea was in such terms with herself Clorangius entred her Chamber with the Message that he came to fetch her to her Mother who it was feared, was dying, a Message which made the tears trickle down her cheeks afresh, but that as much for sor­row that she must leave Alcidor, as, though she loved Dolinda as she was in duty bound, out of a sence that she was in danger of loosing her. Alcidor was indeed grown an inseparable requisite to her satisfaction; she therefore deferred her journey as long as she could, but at last with wet eyes and troubled heart bad adieu to him, Clidantus and Car­melia.

If she was extreamly discontented at her going away; Alcidor was as glad of it, con­sidering that as long as she had stayed he [Page 28] could never have come near Carmelia without finding her with her, and the same day that she went taking the advantage of her absence he and Carmelia, while Clidantus slept walkt into a little wood, private and thick which joyned to the Garden of their House: Here haveing seated themselves as conveniently as they could upon the Mossy root of a well spread Oak, and haveing no more dange­rous witnesses to fear than the Birds and trees, they entred into a mutually endearing conversation, and proceeded from one kindness to another, untill they seemed at strife which of them should shew most, and till Alcidor began to argue with himself from Carmelia's freeness that she had so warm a Passion for him, that if he would but take the confidence to try, she might be brought to grant him what in colder modesty she had forbidden him to aspire to. While such thoughts past up and down in his mind, she who suspected nothing of them, but was willing to indulge as much to his and her own affections as she thought, she well might, without infringing her duty to Clidan­tus, and the rules of decency, curled his locks and kist his forehead with little less allure­ment than if she had a mind to dress a party against her Chastity. Confirmed by these [Page 29] her more innocently intended dalliances in the opinion that if she was importuned she would not refuse him that which places a Lover at the [...]p of his happiness, and in­terpreting the amorous wi [...]hly regards which he observed [...]he cast upon him as a summons to make use of that conveniency of the place for the performance of what he had a mind to, he had his flames so animated that think­ing no longer of any thing but quenching them (with those delights which have the Vertue both of quenching and re-accending the thirst of Love) he solicited her to what was so disagreeable to her, that starting up from the place where she was set and look­ing as pale as if she had recieved some blow that made her heart fail, How, Alcidor, said she to him, dare you entertain me with so foul a baseness, a baseness which unspeakably astonishes and offends me together? Think you that to gratifie your brutishness I will be­tray my honesty? Go make your prayers to lustful women; it is at their temples that you must address your offerings. With these words fetching a deep sigh and on a sudden growing as red as she was before pale, she hastily turned to go away: but Alcidor who read his delinquency in her face and carriage and exprest his penitential distraction in his [Page 03] ovvn, held her by the M [...]ntle and throwing himself at her feet, I acknowledg, Madam, said he to her, that the cholar that you are in is no greater than is just and reasonable: but if there be any thing in the universe that hath influence upon your spirit, I by it be­seech you to pardon the untuly violence of the passion which I have for you; It is that which having deprived me of my reason haith been the cause of my impudence; and if nothing else will satisfie you, I have not a drop of bloud with which I am not ready to expiate it. No, No, interrupted she him, I have no body to blame but my self who have too lightly and foolishly permitted you familiarities which have made you hope as easily to obtain the spoyls of my Chastity. But undeceive your self, Alcidor, and know that I should much more cheerfully love to dye than consent (as you immagine I might be induced to do) to the ruine of my honor. I am sensible, Madam, replied Alcidor, that my crime, though it have love for its com­plice, is of a very deep and ugly stain, but any repentance, if any repentance can be so, is answerable to it. I again therfore beg by all that you hold good and dear to pardon me, and I beg you not to do it, but upon condition, that if ever I fall back into the [Page 31] same sin, you banish me for ever from your favour without leaving me the least hope of Mercy. Overcome with these words and other testimonies of remorse which he ex­prest in a plain and large Character, since I have reason to believe, returned she to him, that you are really troubled for the offence that you have given me, forbear trobling your self any farther, I fully pardon you, but with­all, I lay an indispensable charge upon you, that you no more go against the law which I have by the Obligation of Vertue necessa­rily prescribed you. I confess I love you entirely, but if you imagine you shall be ever able to draw from me more than what I have told you I will allow you; know I shall run to my grave rather than bring a blot upon the integrity of my life. As for our wonted Caresses Provided you proceed not to un­lawful propositions I will allow you them as heretofore, but if by allowing you them you again encourage your self to abuse me, assure your self you will oblige me to hate you as much as I love you. I farther esteem my self very happy in being at present alone with you, but least any ill should be suspected of us, let us return to Clidantus, who possibly may awake and send about in search of us if he finds us not by him. To this he having [Page 32] replied with very ingenious acknowledg­ments of her goodness they sealed their reconciliation with some warm kisses, and past next way out of the wood to Clidantus his Chamber, where when they first came in they found him asleep, but he presently awakened and signified himself very well pleased to see them about him.

It being a Month after this before his Phy­sicians could with their best diligence ad­vance his Recovery to any considerable pass they in that time enjoy'd all the contentments with one another that in the tye which limi­ted them and in the place where they were they could soberly expect, and in the en­joyment of them Carmelia's affection grew to such a height that she began to see by its effects that to love her lover more, she loved her Husband less. This enormity she made very assiduous effects to overcome, but as often as she made them, she so often expe­rienced that the more she resisted, the more the forces which she had to fight against, increased, and desires continually sprung up in her mind which were altogether contrary to her will and which made her wholly ashamed of her self, but which her reason seting it self to oppose there was alwayes something which obtained the victory against it.

[Page 33] While she was in this rout, which, though she could not rectifie, she very discreetly concealed: her Husband by the advice of his Physicians resolved to return to Laqui [...]; that which Alcidor liked very well both because he loved the abode of the Court, and be­cause he made no question of having more liberty with Carmelia there than where they now were, and that which was now by his fartherance of it quickly put in execution.

The next day after they were come to the Royal City. Alcidor going, under colour of visiting Clidantus, to see Carmelia, found Felisbea with them, whom he saluting with civility enough, and a kiss which had more of manners than heat in it, but which how­ever so much dissolved and drew out her heart that she could hardly defend her self from falling in a swoon, the same desires repullulated in her soul which had not long since agitated it, and her humour withall shewed it self drest in lighter colours than it had for a long time been seen in. Of which latter Carmelia taking notice, but not understanding the ground, thought it sprung from the pleasure which she received in see­ing her Brother recovered together with her Mother. Alcidor knew better how to judge of it, but thought not sit to alter the Opi­nion [Page 34] of the one by discovering the affection of the other. But in whatsoever cheerful temper she was at first after their return, and with whatsoever illness she was afterwards struck, four dayes after she took her Bed, and eight dayes after she was laid in her Grave.

She was a Sister whom Clidantus loved as himself: the separation therefore workt so sharply upon him that it renewed his old ill­ness, and the ralapse had so ill a look that it made his Physicians look for nothing good to come of it. They telling his Lady their thoughts, she called up all her constancy to expect and bear with patience the feared event; and she had withall Alcidors advises and comforts to assist her in that occasion: but they were neither of them so effectual, but after some days a humor spreading it self through the sick mans Body which took away the use of his Limbs, her grief want­ed but little of proveing as mortal to her as his Palsey was likely to do to him. But her former Physician taking in hand the cure of it, it by little and little decreas'd, that which was the cause of it at the same time grow­ing every day worse than other.

Six Moons having filled and emptied them­selvs, and all the arts that were used and [Page 35] pains that were taken with Clidantus (and all were used and taken that could be thought expedient) serving only to prove that his Disease was incurable, Alcidor, who had for the most part of that time been employ­ed by the King in expeditions of War, finding him in this condition at his return resolved to draw all the advantage out of it that he could, and, as his passion for Car­melia flamed higher than ever, to make more pressing declarations of it to her than ever, serving himself therefore of the opportunity, he entertained her with regrets for the illness of Clidantus, with laments for her afflicti­on, and with complaints of his own un­happiness, which brought thick clouds over her eyes and presently a large shower out of them. That done he turned to his stile to Gallantries and the Amaenest Themes; he painted his fires to her with most lively and withall most Venust draughts, he with the most moving Rhetorick that he could weave represented to her how unreasonable it was that her florid youth and Beauty should be intombed in Melancholy, and what vivid, generous and elevated contentments those Lovers have who in tirely and with­out reserve addict themselves to one ano­ther: and his success was that the air of her [Page 36] looks and deportment changed from gloomy to serene, that from the picture which he made her of his fires she not only fancied that she saw them and felt them burn, but also really contracted sympathetick heats, more moveing than she ever before had felt, and that she let him see as much, as also that she approved of what he said, by com­plying with him more liberally than ever, and caressing him more profusely. Perceive­ing how he gained ground of her he stopt not there but followed her close with pro­fessions, Blandishments, Arguments, Pro­mises, and by their importunate and insinu­ating fascinations wound himself at length, as into the chief room of her heart, so into that place in her Arms, which Clidantus only was wont to hold, but was now no longer capable of holding. Not but that she still retained for that bed-rid Man those offici­ous respects which were due to him from his Wife and with a tender compassion pain­fully edeavoured his ease and releif. It was the same compassion, though she might have some thoughts that of Clidantns his Wid­dow she should become Alcidor's Wife, which compelled her sometimes to joyn with him in the Prayers which he made, that since he could expect no other remedy [Page 37] death would be his Physician and release him. his life was indeed drawn out with so much torment that it was a true kindness to him to wish the thred of it cut of, and that Dolinda her self who had brought him into the VVorld continually desired to see him go out of it. He having continued six months longer in this sad condition the wishes of himself and his Friends were granted, his Soul taking wing and leaving his Body to be laid to bed in the Earth, that which his Lady took care to have done with a magni­ficence which purchaced her a great Name, and with tears which were her witnesses that though she had sometimes in considera­tion of his misery wisht him in his Grave, she would have been very ready to have fetcht him out of it.

Clidantus gone, Alcidor and Carmelia lived in Paquin in a corespondence of which there would have been good reason to have admired the sweetness, if there had not been some occasion to have distru [...]ted the innocence. The intimacy of it bringing the Ladie's vertue into suspition, the Ladies who were wont to frequent her company, by little and little forbore visiting her. Not able to overlook which disrespect, or to question the ground upon which they [Page 38] built it, she took occasion to speak of it to Alcidor, that so she might clear her consci­ence and engage him to remove her disrepute by the Marriage which she daily expected from him: And he fed her expectation with promises fitted to her palate, but withal, having no mind to come under the yoke, which she would have put upon him, he de­termined to disengage himself from her as soon as handsomly he could. To effect what he had determined, he concluded with him­self to go pass some Moneths in one of his country Houses, but to her he pretended that the King had commanded him upon his service into a remote Province, that which she easily believed, in regard of the equi­page which she saw him provide for his de­parture, and he withall perswaded her to retire from the Court and live privately in the Country during his absence, that which she readily consented to. All things being prepared for the separation and the day come, he saw the grief with which she re­sented it flow with so large a stream in her Eyes, and he had in his own breast such a reluctancy to it that he was upon the point of desisting from his purpose, and of re­solving not to leave her: But considering [Page 39] that if he stayed with her any longer he must either unworthily abuse or else Marry her, from both which he had many reasons that disswaded him, he enforced himself to go on with what he had undertaken, and what he saw necessary, though harsh. After there­fore they had both sighed enough, they bad the Court and one another farewel, he take­ing his way, and she hers.

Come into his Province, Alcidor by the Proofs which he gave of his qualities made all other the brightest Personages appear to him but as glimmering Stars to the Sun in blaze, and like a Miracle drew all eyes and affections after him. But he who made all that saw him in love with him, could not keep himself from being in love with ano­ther. He saw shine a beauty, which (when he had examined Eyes, Face, Shape, Aire, Port, all) he could wish nothing either ad­ded to or taken from, and which, as the Sun puts out all lesser lights and fires, extinguisht in his mind the glories not only of Florisa and Astasia but of Carmelia also, and brought in the incomparable Dorame to rule there a­lone. This young Widow who was issued of one of the best Houses of China appeared to him to have so much of divine in her, that he without any scruple sacrificed to her his [Page 40] whole heart, and that with a different de­votion from what he had formerly paid at Femal shrines. It seemed altogether unjust to him not to love her with a pure integrity and for all his life, or in loveing her not to build upon Vertue, not to aim at Marriage, not to breath after better things than Volup­tuous sensual enjoyment. Become thus in a Moment of a Volatile Libertine a constant and faithful subject of Love, before he made any discovery of his intentions he examined his own Birth, Actions and Fortunes, to see if these were advantages weighty enough to allow him hopes of gaining such a possession as was that which he had in his wishes, and when indeed he well considered what he was, it was impossible that the lustre of his own worth, should cast his rayes about him without lighting him to see that he suffici­ently merited what he had a mind to ob­tain.

Celebriously accomplisht as Dorame was, would she from the time that her dear Cli­sidas expired have entertained proposals of a second Husband, she might have had the same day of his Funerals, to have been that also of her Nuptials. More than a few of the higher rank sought her in Mariage, and [...]his her new Passionate was not ignorant of; [Page 41] but there was no body whom he feared but her whom he loved, and nothing that he cared for but to make her love him. But before that he by any suites or declarations to her delivered his mind of that with which it was big, he thought it best often to visit her, and every time that he visited her, as he found in her Wit, Humour, Fashion, Form, some new occasion of admiring her and of coveting her with impatience for his Wife, so the generousness and sweetness of his dis­position, the equability and moderation of his temper, the Elegancy and sublimeness of his Ingenij, the gracefulness of his Person and carriage, and the great Civility or rather Devotion of his respectfulness to her, more and more nourisht and augmented that kind esteem which from her first knowledge of him she had conceived for him, so that be­fore it was long, if she had at any time any thoughts of being re-married, it was only to Alcidor, that which would have made him account himself a most happy Man had he been acquainted with it, but she very watchfully concealed it from him.

From these same frequent visits that he made to her and other observables of his actings, though he had told his own soul only the zeal which he had of applying him­self [Page 42] to her a servant of love, people gene­rally argued a probabilty of it, his competi­tors in particular conceived so strong an opi­nion of it, that they all superseded from waiting upon her, some affraid of measuring Swords with him, others knowing that they could not measure Deserts with him. He would have been better contented that some of the most gallant of them should have con­tinued firm in their pursuite, that so they disputeing the prize with him, his Victory (or fall) might have been the more illustri­ous. But seeing them all forsake the lists of her service he one day took occasion to speak of it to her.

He having upon which subject said what he thought convenient, It is my ill fortune returned she to him, which will have them in the Series of my Conversation observe my want of Merit, and then withdraw that they may loose no more time in remarking in me defects which oblige them to fly from me instead of following me. And you, Sir, added she, after you have known me a while will Judge it necessary to do the like. What wayes one may invent, cryed Alci­dor, interrupting her, to reproach the great­est excellencies under Heaven! The rea­sons why they quit you, Madam, continued [Page 43] he with a low respect, is because they are sensible that the zeal with which I adore you is abundantly stronger, purer and more faith­ful than theirs, and therefore, though it hath no Merit in it self, yet, in comparison with theirs, deserves to be better received and re­compens'd: And imagine not, for you will be unjust if you do so, that I have so distem­per'd a spirit as ever to imitate those extra­vagants who meet their shame in their in­constancy.

This discourse comming a little unexpect­edly, but very acceptably to her from him for whom she had more affection than ever she had for any, her beloved Clicidas excep­ted; In earnest, Sir, replied she presently, you have a very ingenious art, and you are very industrious in using it to make your self sport with those absents and with me; and you would perswade me into a strange be­lief, should I give up my self to hearken to you: but as little discretion as I have, I have so much as to understand your flatteries and to know what ear and credit I am to give them. If Alcidor loves, it is not Dora­me that he loves, he aspires to things more exalted, and Princesses, not such as I, are the objects of his Vows. I wish no more, Madam, replied Alcidor to her, than that my [Page 44] satisfaction depended upon the truth of this, that I think there is nothing humane to which I can aspire more exalted than your self; and that is my next Religion under what I ow to Heaven to vow and pay to you all that Man can Vow and pay to Wo­man. For Heaven knows that, though I have stayed till now to tell you so, from the first minute that I saw you, my breast hath been nothing else but a region of fires which your beauties kindled, and which burn to you with as fervent and clear a devotion as ever did those upon the Persian Altars to the bright Eye of the World. It is too probable that you account it criminal in me to be a Candidate of those Felicities which Clisi­das while he lived enjoyed; but make what judgment of me and disposal you think good, I shall never the more cease to pay homage to you and nevertheless endeavour to make good the quality of your servant.

Having many arguments to believe that these words had nothing of cozening paint or artifice in them but were the genuine dictates of his heart wholly given up to her, Dorame stood still a while pleasing her self with the acquisition that she had made, Then if it be true, Sir, returned she that you have that kindness for me that you pretend, [Page 45] it it also true that I reap a most plentiful ho­nor and advantage by it, and that I should be both very ungratful and very unwise together should I deny it an agreeable reception: and you have for my encouragement the appear­ance and the estimation of a more generous Man, than to design the abusing a Widow who reckons nothing more recommendable than your vertue or more worthy of an Em­pire than your accomplishments, and who therefore accounts it a most weighty subject of glory to her to see you stoop to consider her otherwise than she can by any title of her own challenge. You are highly injurious to your self, Madam, replyed he, in disclaim­ing the pretensions which by the graces of which you are owner you may most right­fully make: As you in complement name me uncapable of a Scepter, I seriously and with good reason esteem you worthy of a Crown. I see I can gain nothing upon you, re­joyned she, your tongue, nor to contradict that great opinion that every one hath of you, delighting to shew its Pomp in per­swading me more victoriously, that which you would have me believe. There needs no art of words, returned Alcidor, to declare a truth so plain as is that of your overtop­ping worth, its rayes will break through [Page 46] the thickest veil. I am sensible indeed that the more perfection you have and know you have, the less hope I can have that you should give to one so defective as I am, that place in your heart that I dye for; but yet I can­not chuse but say that if you will consult the World about your qualities, I am willing you should name me Impostor, and treat me as such a one if all that know you do not avow you one of the chiefest of those pieces which are matter of Admiration to them. I very well know, answered Dorame, that only to hear you speak is enough to take away from the eyes and spirit of those that hear you, the faculty of judging things as they appear: I will therefore contest no longer with you, as being certain of the conquest which you have a mind to win. I yield you that which you at present contend for; let us now discourse of something else. What can I discourse of to you, reparted Alcidor, so much to my mind as of the per­fections which you have in your self, and of the affections which I have for you? But to obey you I will at present say no more of either of them, provided that you will pro­mise me to believe what I have already said of both. To give you a satisfaction, said Dorame to him, I agree to what you ask, so [Page 47] far as my Conscience of my self will allow me, and I shall doubt less of your love than of my own merit, since you have so great a desire to assure me of the former, and I have so little reason to assure my self of the latter. I shall indeed be very much at ease, Madam, resumed Alcidor, if you will rec­kon my Passion as true, serious and great, as it really is, and as I have a desire to give you testimonies that it is; but it will be with hopes that you will retaliate it to me, which if I miss of my ease will prove as little as is that of the wounded Man who knows that the Chyrur­gion upon whom his recovery depends is sufficiently acquainted with his wounds, but will not take in hand the Cure of them.

At this Language Dorame casting down her looks and forbearing to answer, Alcidor threw himself upon his knees before her in the fashion of a Homager, if not a Wor­shipper. She stooping to raise him up, her cheek came so near his mouth that tempted with the opportunity he could not forbear touching it with his lips, which (perform­ed as it was with a graceful delicacy) she not shewing her self displeased with, accend­ed with the favour, and willing from that step to derive pretence to another, he rose and with a new confidence but also with a [Page 48] reverence not much different from that of Religion made some closer impressions of his lips upon her mouth and eyes, not indeed without being reproved by her for it, but that with a sweet and soft mildness which shewed she could not be much offended with that which was only to be attributed to the excess of his love, and which encouraged him to doe the like, again rather than deter­red him from it.

He having after a few days by the endear­ing engageing powers of his Merit and courtship prevailed with her plainly to ac­cept of his service, their conversation had so much vertuous amoenity and sweetness in it, that it was a great deal of pitty it should have been interrupted; but he was con­strained to go to accord a quarrel of which he was made Arbiter, and the law of his charity did them the ill office of separating them, that which they would have account­ed yet a worse office, had they not conside­red that the Adversaries whom he went to reconcile deserved that he should take that pains for them.

Two days after his departure she was sur­prized in her Chamber by Rolimon, Melian and Vindorix, where this Uncle and Cozens had not stayed long before they told her that [Page 49] they had not at present made a Journey to her but to solicit her to receave for her Hus­band her old Lover Cartagenes, whose worth and quallity were no more uuknown to her than were his Love and and services. In an­swer to which she who had taken the retreat of that Cavaleir as well as of her other sui­tors for a sign, either of a frigid affection or▪ a faulty courage, they having never visited her since Alcidor frequented her, freely de­clared the ill opinion which she had conci [...] ­ved of him as well as of the rest. Rolimon did his endeavour to remove from her this impression, speaking all that he could to the advantage of his friend; but he after all found that it was but labor in vain to go about to replace him in her favour. He ceasing therefore to alledge any thing more in his behalf, she changed her action and language, and succinctly told them all that had past between her and Alcidor, so hand­somely representing to them the Love which he had propounded to her, that they resent­ed a high delight in hearing it, and earnest­ly connselled her to think of no other Hus­band. Alcidor, said Rolimon, besides that he is of an illustrious Bloud, is Master of Quallities, altogether uncommon to the World, his Courage maks him feared, his [Page 50] Courtesie loved, every thing of him admired, he hath gained a reputation of a large extent and a most glorious nature, and hath deser­ved it as well as gained it, having done as eminent things as ever Man of his age and condition. Riches and Grandeurs do not at all blind him or allure his mind to a higher or more eager flight than becomes him: But had he occasions of enterprizing things satisfactory to the height and magnitude of his [...]oul, his Element would be to conquer Kingdoms. A great Princess and as fair as great would have made it her glory to have gained him for her Husband, but that she could not dispose of her own will, nor could he conclude it convenient for him to Marry so famous a Parsonage. If he loves you, as I have no reason to doubt but he does by the testimonies that you have given us of it, and your good Fortune brings you to be his Wife, as I have hopes it will, you may with a just confidence rank your self among the most happy Women of China. I know his humour, I am acquainted with his Birth and Education; I understand a great part of the motions of his Life, and can therefore speak of him, as I do with assurance. You speak too much on his side, Sir, said Dorame, not to make him uppear amiable and to oblige me [Page 51] to court his neerest friendship. Satisfied therefore as I am, that you know he out­weighs Cartagenes, I am resolved to follow your advise and not by a dis-ingenious, fool­ish, unworthy co [...]ness, debarre my self of the present, which heaven seems willing I should receive. You have reason indeed, Couzen, interposed Melian, to think no more of your old servants, for the one Al­cidor's lustre darkens all theirs how conside­rable soever. He who knows him, said Vin­dorix, and will not acknowledge him com­posed of worth, must be concluded either to overflow with envy, or to be very de­fective in judgment, I with a great deal of Solicitousness wish you married to him, and I am in continual fear least this good fortune should be ravisht from you by some sinister accident. Heaven, if it thinks good, retur­ned Dorame to him, will preserve him from me. You had seen him here at present had not a quarrel between two of his friends called him away; but to morrow he is to return, and if he loves not me, yet he loves his word better than to fail. I wish, resu­med Rolimon, that he veiled not his design from you, and instead of going to agree some friends is, not gone to fight some Ene­my. Give not your self the trouble of such [Page 52] fears, replied Dorame to him, for I am very certain he hath nothing of difference of his own to decide with any body, having sight of a Letter which informed me he was only arbitrator in a disagreement of others. But since you are pa [...]ticularly acquainted, as you was saying, with his life; the History of it, during his absence, would be a diversion very agreeable to me if not a labor too trouble­some to you, You could not ask me a thing, answered her, Rolimon, which is more to my mind, than to entertain you with what I understand of his affairs, and if you will not give me that attention which I may claim as their right, I doubt not but to make you confess that few things more considerable have come to your ears. Presently Melian, Vindorix and Dorame seating themselves about him, he began his Narration in these Tearms.

The History of [...]

SInce I have undertaken to give you an account of as much as I know of Alcidor's Life, it is just that I first shew you what his Original was and what his younger Motions, rhat so by the one you may see what a Noble Stock he grows upon, and by the other what an Elevation of Spirit he gave evidence of in his feeble years. He is Issued by his Father Miraldus of one of the most antient Houses of the Province of Quincij, by his Mother Deifila of a Branch Royal of China, by both allied to the most Eminent Families of the Kingdom. The Pomp of his Birth was equal to the height of it, there was no body conside­rable in the Vicinage who came not to welcome him into the World, and Feasts, [Page 54] Bals, and all the more fashonable and elegant expressions of joy were for five days toge­ther the exercises of them that came. The first hours of his birth, they who seriously considered him, not out of flattery but judg­ment, congratulated his Parents concern­ing him, as a work of their Mariage which Nature had taken a pleasure to render com­pleat. They themselves indeed could not look upon him without fancying his eyes, beamings of a Genius that promised nothing mean; and he gave a very early confirma­tion of their Fancy; for by that time he had gotten over four years he delighted himself in nothing so much as in seeing Arms and Horses, and in handling the one and mount­ing the other, thereby giving Omens that holding dear in his Childhood the in­struments of glory, he would in time prove by them as worthy an Heir of Miraldus his Reputation, as of his Estate.

When he had attained to an age capable of learning things worth the knowing, he found nothing difficult to him but compre­hended them wholly almost as soon as he had the beginnings of them taught him. I my self have, not without astonishment, observed him to understand at seven years that which a better spirit than ordinary must [Page 55] have been at a great deal of p [...]ins to appr [...] ­hend at twelve, his judgment and gracefulness were while he was a Child advanced to a maturity that spake him Man. Grown bigger he shewed himself furnisht with so many excellent quallities that his glad Pa­rents thought it time that he should see the Superbe Court of Florimen, where they hoped he would one day make his Vertue shine, and there, if he was taken with the beauties of the place he took all that saw him with the early and most hopeful blos­somes of his youth; Arcantus in particu­lar the King's Brother took him into his Bosome, and affectionately made it his cai [...] that there should be nothing wanting to the rendring of him a most compleat person.

The various practises of the Indian King­dome inciting the great Lords of China to revolt anew, and combustions being by that means kindled and blown up very dammag­able to the State, in aggravation of the dis­order, Arcantus complained that he was slighted, and that Podamus, [...]rastes and Belliman had in the Counsell of the twelve Auditors without calling him to it, acted as they thought good, very much in pre­judice of his concerns. Nor did he com­plain only, but also, not able to brook the [Page 56] Bravades of those Princes who were stran­gers from the Royal Bloud, he departed from Court and levied Forces. In these Al­cidor commenc't the Soldior, following his Colours with an ardor answerable to the obligation which he had to him, and which remarkably auspicated those great things which he afterwards performed.

From this spring many different motions arising in China, the Prince Arcantes within a few days published a Declaration, in which he protested that he had not depart­ed and armed but to employ his Fortunes, Forces and Life, to remove the Authors of the publick confusion, to prosecute justice for [...] the Rapires and Massacres comitted during the Reign of Trasilas, and to restore the many Lords, Gentlemen and o­thers that were in Prison and in Exile. In pursute of this Declaration to encrease his Appennage and by common armes recover peace to the Nation, he joyned himself with those of the new sect (as it was called) of Religion. But the Queen-Mother see­ing that his Resentments and proceedings enfeebled rather than strengthened the au­thority which she assumed over all affairs made a journey to him, and by her power­full influence and Prudential workings ob­tained [Page 57] a success of Hostility for six Mo­neths.

By the end of this time Rolianis Brother in Law to Florimen by the Marriage of his Sister having made an escape from Court a potent Army of Male-contents was in the Field and Arcantes marching in the head of them. To oppose them, Orastes and those of his House framed a [...]eague and drew the King to sign it, and all was ready to be undone, when to take from the factious all pretext of fishing in troubled Waters, Ar­cantus returned to good tearms with the King, having obliged him to hold a general Counsell of the Kingdom for recompensing the good, punishing the bad, and setting right what was out of order.

All quarrels appeased between the two Royall Brothers, the Revolters sent abroad their Manifesto's, and in calming this di­sturbance, was the King detained when came Deputies of the Province of Loxa to beg succors of him, and to demand the Prince his Brother for Protector of their Li­berties against the Indians. What they askt they obtained; Arcantus was presently de­clared Lieutenant General, and with a considerable sum took his way to Brema, Alcidor both by the Prince's invitation, and [Page 58] by the instigation of his own humor went one of the company thither, and he saw there so much Honor paid to Arcantus and so much affection shewed to the meanest of his retinue, that he was ready to repute their aboade there for that of Florimen's Pa­lace, and that fair Town for the Florishing City of Paquin. All were indeed received by their new Hosts with as much kindnesses, as if they had been in their own Houses but they ill repaid their kindnesses, [...]and and by grand disorders made them too quickly reckon, that the Chinoise tuition was less easie to brook than the Indian Tyranny. In short, whatsoever good order Arcantus could take, who in an exemplary manner caused the insolents to be punisht, they who were called in for succour loaded with such ill usages by those that had called them, that to disenslave and revenge themselves together, they turned to weave conspiracies against them, and resolved by an universal Massacre to disgorge them. From the reso­lution they soon past to the execution, and it was so bloudy a one, that the Prince did not but with much difficulty save himself from it. A great part of his People were assassina­ted in Brema, and Alcidor had in all likely­hood ran the same fortune, had not the faithful Turgistus kept him concealed in his [Page 59] House till the rage of the multitude was blown over. His Prince having left be­hind him that infamous aboade, when so much nobleness had in a most horrid manner a Burying place given them, not seeing him among those that escaped, believed without any farther hopes and therefore not without a Pathetick sorrow that he had been Sacrificed to the same bar­barous fury with the rest. With the same sad conclusion were Miraldus and Deifila, after all the information that they could get, forced to sit down, wholly overwhelmed with grief. But while they were lamenting him as dead, he on a sudden presented him­self to them alive and well, and together with himself Turgistus as the invaluable freind who had first saved him from the tem­pest, and then taking the advantage of the fair weather that succeded it had put him in disguise and conducted him to them. That the sight of him did in a moment change all their blacks into colors of extream joy and that his Deliverer had large heaps of remunerations thrown upon him, I supose, I need not tel you.

Orastes and his confederates, no [...] able better to authorize their Monopolies than by setting the Subject against the King, did by their subtle acts so effectually work them [Page 60] to their purpose that to hear their insolent discourses of their Sovereign and his Go­vernment would have inclined one to say that he was bound to hold in fee of their ca­priciousness. In prosecution of this they took up Arms and brought into the World the designs which they had been a long time hatching, by the same means sending Ar­cantus out of it, who with greif to see his Brother and the Kingdom involved in the confusion of a sixth civil War, wherein also he saw his own pretensions reversed, fell sick and dyed. After his death the King who had no Child caused Potianis to be received as the first Prince of the Bloud and Prime Victory of China. Where the Leagurers deriving freth pretexts of dissatisfaction spake not of the King but with an unsuffe­rable contempt, told the Multitude that Polianis would bring the true Religion of China under the yoke of the new Sectaries, sowed abroad defamatory Libels, vigorously carried on their Counsels in the Provinces of Iroquiam and Cantan, begot a numerous increase to their party in Paquin and every where induced the People to rise, who were otherwise disposed to it by the corrup­tions of the Court. To prevent the ruine which by this means hung over the Publick [Page 61] and to that purpose to wash away the foun­dations of the Confederacy that threatned it, the King dispatcht Letters into all his Provinces, wherein he obliged the Gover­nors of places and persons of quallity not to abandon his service and the common good. Among these, Alcidor, though emi­nently recommendable for his Birth Cou­rage, Vertues and Interests, and though Master of a very large Estate which his late­ly deceast Father had left him, was for­gotten to be put by the King. This for­getfulness, boyling with a generous heat of Soul, he took for a Mark of contempt, and was toucht with it to the quick: from the e­motion he proceeded to a consideration of conscience, and representing to himself that the Party of the League was of the true Religion and undertook its defence against the other, he grew to an opinion that to fol­low them was to fight for God. Notice of his discontent by some factious instruments brought to Orastes, he quickly sent to visit him with Officers of all the Advantages which in such a War he could on his side hope for, and when, not a little pleased to see himself sought to by a Prince of so ad­vanced a name and swaying influence he as he thought himself bound to do, went to [Page 62] him, that perfect Courtier by the inevitable spels with which he laid hold upon him brought him with fervour to embrace his side against that of his Sovereign. Which done, to keep him his, as he made him, and withal to take the benefit of his being so, he gave him Moneys and Commission to raise five hundred Horse, and he in execution of the trust was on a sudden seen at the head of many silent Men, attempting and atchieving things which, called, not only the vulgar but the bravest of the Nation to take notice of him with admiration, and which particu­larly purchased him the good will of Lisantus one of the most Gallant chiefs of the party.

The heads of the League, to give it good colour and to draw strength to it, had pub­lisht very specious principles as motives of it, and had conjured the Princes, Nobles and Commons to stand up for the Antient faith against the Novel, which they said the King favoured against them, by that Lure decoying into them multitudes of credulous People. To impede this the King put abroad a Decla­ration in which he cleared himself from the several blots wherewith they aspersed him and particularly testified that he bore a sincere and constant love to the settled Re­ligion of China; that which disarmed a [Page 63] great number of People and some of them very considerable; but not Alcidor, who persisted so affectionate to the cause which he had espoused, believeing himself bound to venture, and if need required, to spend his Life in its quarrel, that nothing but death seemed of power to discover him from it. In proportion to his affection did his cou­rage and Prudence labour for its advantage, but notwithstanding all the endeavors both of him and others to hold it up, they saw it in a short time so enfeebled and bent to fall that they were constrained to incline to peace, and to return it, not for always, yet at least for a time to the obedience of their King.

It was indeed no long time before they who had been so forced to lay down their Arms had taken them up again; which Poli­anis seeing put himself in the Field with a very considerable Strength, and as first Prince of the Bloud declareing their practi­ses Felonious protested, he would as faith­fully as necessarily defend against them the prerogative of the King, the State of the Queen Mother, and the fundamental Laws of the Realm. In sequel of this the War becoming open, Alcidor got on Horse back and ranged himself in the Army that was [Page 64] led by Lucimon, where continually seeking occasions of Action he signalized his vertue and aggrandized his name by deeds, which were altogether wonders. But he could not by all that he could do, protect that Brother of Orastes from being as continually molest­ed so in several Battels notably beaten by the Brother-in-law of Florimen.

Lucimon after a while advancing to Paquin, whose Inhabitants had been diligently cha [...]ed to stir, and lookt with jealousie upon the intervier which Polianis and the Queen Mo­ther had lately had, and there by the inter­est of Orastes whom they worshipt as a God, making what impression upon them he de­sired, Orastes, himself in another quarter with loud and sharp invectives complaining of the King that he had labored against his own work by revoking an authentick Edict of Peace by another which he had made since, carried on the War with a very sedu­lous and potent hand. In the end the Indi­ans being called in by him and following his call, and the Kingdom being on all sides imbraced with Hostility, the Opponent Armies came to a bloody Fight, in which Lucoris was slain, Polianis remained Vi­ctorious, and the vanquisht were reduced [Page 65] to such an universal disorder, extream confu­sion and miserable estate that they who esca­ped from the deluge of blood that was shed, had wholly exposed themselves to the mercy of the Conquerors, had it not been for Alcidor, who as in the Battel, so in the rout and Flight, did all that it was possible for a Man of heart, to do. He with a ma­nagement which can never be too much ap­plauded carried of the said relicks of the shipwrack, drew them into a Body and offered fair for the repairing of the loss. But the Commanders proved too timerous­ly affected towards the undertaking, and the Soldiers more eager of securing, than of hazarding themselves and of running a way than of Fighting again.

The revolt was thus set at Bay; but the principal Authors of it determined, rather to Abyss themselves in the ruines of the State, than change the course which they had begun: and presently the King from all parts received Advertisement of the con­spiring of his Subjects. For the necessary security therefore both of his Person and his head City, he put a Garrison in it; which Orastes looking upon as intended a curb to his ambitious practises he so powerfully in­cited the people that they fall to barricading [Page 66] and committed ravages altogether unworthy of Chinoises, and which made the King leave Paquin to go seek a shelter against the storm that threatned his life. The King, and with him the Court gone, the Miserable Citizens sensible of the wound which they had thereby received, repented of their disobedience and desired the Parliament to beg their Pardon and humbly beseech his Majesty to return to his Palace, and by his presence restore to that great Town the a­bundant Emoluments which his removal had taken from them. But this, reckoning himself justly incenst, he resolvedly denied; his denial very much perplext both the People and their leaders, and to warrant themselves from the mischeifs which they saw were likely to fall upon their heads they set new Engines on work and made new experiments. Florimen on the other side ar­med, both against them, and those of the o­ther Religion, and against both obtained ve­ry important victories; All things went to his advantage. Which Orastes seeing, and that after whatsoever manner he steered his designs they sailed not with an untoward wind, he demanded an assemby of the gene­ral Counsel of the Kingdome to the end, as he said, of re-establish [...]d peace and re­placing [Page 67] the King's Subjects in a perfect Obe­dience. The King having granted what he demanded, and opened that great Court with a speech, of which the Eloquence and Conduct made him admired for one of the wisest and most excellent heads that wore a Crown, he, who had braved his authority confidently, presented himself before him, and he received him with a gratious aspect, but not long after by the advise of his Counsel dispatcht him out of the World. Upon notice of which Execution the Peo­ple of Paquin broke out into extremeties which trampled all their allegiance under foot, and in revenge of it Lucimon raised them that were exasperated in plain rebelli­on, and after their example several of their chief Towns of China, and having gained a formidable strength advanced towards Florimen with a confidence of making him his Prisoner. But upon intiligence of his enterprize Polianis reconciled himself with the King, employed his Arms in his succor and forc't the Enemy to fly. In this occasion was Alcidor engaged on the side of Lucimon and performed all the parts of a Man of courage but was constrained to give place to Equity and Force.

A little after having notice that his friend [Page 68] Tyrenas was taken Prisoner and kept at Chi­nanfu he contrived and effected the conveiy­ance of a Letter to him, wherein he assured him that he would, if possible, suddenly pro­cure his liberty, either by Money, or Ex­change, or some other means; and what he promised he faithfully endeavored by Offers of tearmes, but altogether unprofitably.

He therefore wove a project of surprizing the place, which he communicated to Li­santus, and which he highly approving they caused a silent number of Souldiers to be habited like villagers, but armed under their habits, and sent them with instructions under shew of going to Market to seize one of the gates, but before thy could seize it they were discovered and the body of the guard alarrumed. They, notwithstanding that, after a hot assault and vigorous resistance made themselves Masters of it. At the noise which they made Alcidor powred in with the Men which he had in readiness for the purpose, and after him Lisantus with a greater force, and having taken the first Body of the Guard and all without, seized a Canon that was pointed against them, and pointed it against the Town. Amazed with which, and looking upon themselves as unable to resist, those of the Garrison [Page 69] received the Laws of the Conqueror. I need not represent to you the pleasure of [...]y renas to find himself at liberty and the ac­knowledgments that he made to the Authors of it; they are easie enough to be immagined.

In this part of the relation Dorame, could not forbear interrupting her Uncle and tel­ling him that all the actions of Alcidor had so much Beauty in them that she let none of them pass without giving them accla­mations; but this last of all the rest, con­sidering especially, added she, that such men who will hazard their lives for them whom they pretend to love, are very rare in this age, in which falshood and dissimu­lation raign far more powerfully than either Fidelity or freeness. It is usual with Al­cidor, Cosin returned Roliman to her, to perform that which is not usual with others, and there are several passages of his story, yet behind by which you will see he hath an unquestionable title to more than com­mon Encomiasticks and that upon the score not of one only but of many vertues.

A Few days after the surpisal of Chinanfu, went he on, Alcidor had information brought him that the Governour whom he and Li­santus had placed in it, designing to better his fortune by betraying his trust, was a­bout [Page 70] to dispose it to the service of the King; with which he having acquainted Lisantus, they only with two Men put themselves in­to the place, secretly called together some of the principal Persons of it, and by the Oratory that they used moulded them into the form that they desired. That done they assembled the chief of the Gover­nour's Party and with the Poniard at their throat made them promise to serve the League; they turned out the old Gover­nor and settled one of approved Integrity in his room, they took an Oath of Fide­lity of all the People, and made the Garrison most firmly theirs.

No sooner had they with a great deal of honour accomplisht this, which they had with enough of danger enterprized, but Lucimon informed of Florimens advance to­wards Paquin conjured Alcidor with all speed to put himself into it, to defend it. But with this part of his life, I am not throughly acquainted particularly not with the love, which they say, he and the Princess Florissa had at that time for one another. Hearing him say so, I am very sorry, said Dorame to him, that you can relate no­thing to us of that business with which I have been more than once entertained, but [Page 71] so confusedly that I understand lit [...] [...] and which I assure my self is none of the meanest imbellishments of that life that you are recounting. The occurencies of it are indeed very divertising, said Vindorix, and such that one cannot well hear with­out having one's spirit made a kind of a Prisoner to them. You have then a know­ledg of them, said Dorame to him. I have a great deal of reason to blame my Memo­ry, resumed Rolimon, for not re-calling that my Nephew was during all the Siege shut up in Paquin with Alcidor; so that there is no body who so well as he can pre­serve his story from having one of his chief­est ornaments retrencht. I must acknow­ledge, reparted Vindorix, I not only was a witness of the Atchievements of War which Alcidor performed in that Siege, but I was also no stranger to the intrickes of love which past then between him and the Prin­cess Florisa. I was for that time his Com­panion in Arms, and he made few enter­prises upon our Enemyes in which I was not his assistant. One designe had engaged us to the League, and reckoning to act vigorously for our conscience and glory, we upon all occasions put our selvs upon dan­gers for a party which we have since found [Page 72] unjust and too late abandoned. But, not to wast time in that which is nothing to our present purpose, I shall give you all the ac­count that I can of that which you desire to know.

As Vindorix was opening his mouth to begin what he had to say, word was brought to Dorame that there were two Gentlemen alighted who desired to pay her their re­spects. Having sent back him who brought the word to conduct them in, and rising up to go and receive them, she saw enter her Chamber two near Kinsmen of Cloriastes who a little before would have Duelled Cartagenes as his rival in her love. Rolimon, Orlian and Vindorix, being well acquainted with them, quickly learnt what it was that had brought them thither. Which being to solicite Dorame to accept their kinsman for her Husband, Rolimon made such a re­hearsal to them of the refusal which she had given him and his companions suing for Cartagenes, that they lookt upon it as unrea­sonable for them to imagine that they could obtain of her for their friend what her Uncle and Cousins could not for theirs. They were made yet farther to despair of prevail­ing with her by Vindorix assuring them that there had past mutual professions of kind­ness [Page 73] between her and Alcidor. In the last place Dorame herself deprived them of all hope, speaking to them of Alcidor as of one whom she had reason to love, and whom therefore she really did love above all those who had made suite to her. Un­able therefore to disapprove the choice that she had made and unwilling to travel their spirits to make Marble sensible, they super­seded from their negotiation and past to con­gratulate to her the affections of him, of whose value they avowed they had suffici­ent cognisance. In such discourses they held one another till Supper time; when Do­rame contrary to the intentions which Flo­ris and Lucidas had of going away that night engaged them to sit down at Table with her. After supper going to spend what remained of the day in the Garden they fell presently upon their former sub­jects, Cartagenes, Cloriastes and Alcidor, and all agreed to give the last a higher form in their Elogies than to either of the for­mer, but that Cartagenes was to be set a­bove Cloriastes, or Cl [...]riastes above Cartage­nes would by no means be yielded by Floris and Lucidas on the one side, or by Roli­mon, Melian and Vindorix on the other. The contest growing warm, to bring them to an [Page 74] accord and not favour the one in disadvan­tage of the other, Dorame past judgement that they were both Men of Honor, and so equal in all quallities requisite to persons of their conditions that there were no praises due to the o [...]e which were not also deserved by the other. This determination finishing the difference and the shadows beginning to cover the Earth they retired all into the House and quickly after every one to his Lodging.

The End of the First Book.

The Second Book.

NOT a wink of sleep could Dorame get all Night, Disquieted with the Vi­sion which she had of a shadow every moment, presenting it self to her; the more she considered of which the more she imagined Alcidor dead, and the more this indignation pre­vailed upon her, the more increased her inquietudes. Her sighes reaching the ears of Oriana and Milsinda, her women, they rose, lighted Candles, inquired into her new trouble, and finding what ill impressi­on she had concieved, endeavored all that they were able to remove it. But it had taken too deep root to be on a sudden pulled up; only their remonstrances and the light of the Candles together in some measure lessened the disturbance that it gave [Page 76] her. Perceiving which, though she re­manded them to their Beds, they would not be over-ruled to leave her till it was day and that she had in a good part laid aside her black fancy. The day advancing and she keeping her Bed to redeem the repose of which the displeasures of the night had robbed her, it was not long before a kind sleep lockt up her senses and cares together. Which lasting some hours and then leaving her very well refresht, she was told as soon as she was throughly awake that Rollmon; Vindorix and the others having heard of her ill rest waited to know when they might with her convenience visit her. She there­upon sending them word that she was ready to bid their company welcome, they came all into her Chamber; where after they had heard from her own mouth what di­sturbance she had had, they jointly made it their business to take her from all melancho­lick immaginations.

While they were thus employed there was brought into the Chamber Limonides who applying himself to Dorame, I come, Madam, said he to her, to bring you the [...]idings of my Masters fate, whom Alci­dor hath sent to his Grave. Alcidor hath killed Cartagenes, cryed Dorame: See the [Page 77] truth of the Vision which hath so much tormented me. Here is a Letter, Madam, proceeded he, presenting one to her, which will assure you of what I have told you. Having taken and opened it she read in it these words.

Cartagenes to Dorame.

I Have reckoned it more just to try the ho­norable way of a combate with Alcidor than to withdraw cowardly from your service, and shamefully leave him the Glory of so fair a prize, I have been the aggressor in the quar­rell and for my reward have received two wounds which deprive me of my blood and life together. My servant will entertain you with the accident, the litle strength that I have left permitting me to tell you no more but that I dye your servant and that Alcidor merits you far better than either Cloriastes or Cartagenes.

Dorame was deeply struck with the mis­fortune and witnessed by plenty of tears the lively sense which she had of it, together with the good esteem in which she had the unhappy lover. Oh the strange effects of Love, cryed Rolimon! Cartagenes ingaged [Page 78] us to seek Dorame in Marriage for him, and in his soul thought of dying. Pardon me, Sir, said Limonides to him, my Master thought of nothing less than fighting when he gave you the pains of comming hither, he had at that time nothing in his mind but his Love; but there afterwards evened o­ther things which begot in him an intention of fighting, that so he might confer and vindicate his honour. But whence, Limo­nides, said Dorame, sprung his quarrell with Alcidor? That you should know it, Madam, replied Limonides, was part of his will before he dyed, of which he ap­pointed me his Executor. Instantly af­ter that my Lords who are here, Your Uncle and Cousins were gone from his House, came in Almidon to him, and be­fore me told him so many things to provoke him, that unless he had been altogether stu­pid or a coward he would by no means have remained without an angry resentment. Among other things he told him, that Alcidor having with little paines acquired your favour so as to be declared your servant and owned by you for such, had to your self in the presence of many persons of quallity spoken so disadvan­tageously and contemptuosly of him that [Page 79] he could not believe himself his friend, did he not give him notice of it, and farther wirh all his power assist him to recover sa­tisfaction of the injury. Cartagenes having with impatience enough heard what he said, If you did not assert it, Alcidor said he, I should have a great deal of difficulty to believe that Alcidor who is esteemed one of the most generous of men would discourse of me to her whom I adore; or indeed to any Body otherwise than he in equity and Candor ought. Hath he besides ever known me tamely pocket up an affront that he should take the confidence to give me so cruel a one? But I have a way to arrest his insolency, and if there be nothing besides the Beauty of Dorame, that is enough to make me Valiant, if not invincible. At these words Almidon saying that it belonged to him to serve him in revenge of the injury who had informed him of it, Cartagenes drew him aside and for some time held a discourse with him, of which I confess I had more than ordinary apprehensions. I knew Almidon to be a turbulent and unlucky intermedler, I knew also that he had a design of drawing my Master to the search of his Cousin Lidia; I therefore easily believed that he had upon that account brewed this quarrel for him. [Page 80] Almidon gone, Cartagenes past the rest of the day in Melancholy. At night when he was going to Bed remembring that I had heard the greatest part of what Almidon and he had said to one another, could you have ever thought, said he to me, that Alcidor would have thus abused me? I cannot be induced, Sir, returned I to him, to give any credit to what hath been told you, and I wish for your quiet you would not at all regard it. To this he replied nothing but bid me put him to bed, which I did and gave him the good-night. Next morning at point of day he called me to dress him, which done, he took horse (and I with him) to go to see one of his friends. By the way (I know not what ill fortune would have it so) he about the middle of the day took a path which he was never, that I know of, wont to follow. Having followed it some Miles he happened to meet Alcidor, whom accosting with a bold roughness, he angrily enough demanded of him the reason why he had spoken so unhandsomly of him to Dorame, To that, you should learn to know me better, replied Alcidor, than to be­lieve that I am of a humor to offend any Per­son without reason; and the injury that you [...]o me in taking up that ill opinion of me is [Page 81] greater than that which it seems you take for granted I have done you. But besides this, the Lovely Dorame deserves that we should make one thrust with our Swords, as I see you have a mind we should; and I take mine in my hand, continued he, to let you know that I will have the glory of ser­ving her alone, engaged both by what he had said himself, and by Alcidors words and action my Master drew together with him, but wholly to his misfortune. For though he was well mounted and (as is e­nough known) very stout, he quickly re­cieved two wounds, one of which being in his belly gave him only leasure to get to a little house hard by where they fought, to write the Letter that I have brought you, and just as he expired to command me to give you, together with that, an account of his disaster. But I must not forget, added Limonides, the generousness of Alcidor, who, when he saw his adversary tumble to the ground at the second thrust that he gave him, jumpt from his Horse to his succor. Which he who was fallen seeing, and getting up of himself, trouble not your self, brave Alcidor, said he, to help me; I am mor­tally wounded, and though with your Sword Almidon is the cause of it. That [Page 82] base man shall dye, returned Aclidor to him, or I will my self perish by that kind of peo­ple who are skilful to make more quarrels than they are able to appease. Believe me, I never spake a word of you that could give you a disgust. I am too certain of your in­nocence, replied Cartagenes to him, to make any further question of it, and let you plain­ly see the baseness of Almidon, Limonides shall give you an account of the discourse which he yesterday held to me, in the mean time that we binde up my wounds and I recover strength to carry me to some place where I may dye more conveniently than here. Accordingly while Alcidor served my Master for Chyrurgion, I served Alci­dor for intilligencer. Which done we had only time to conveigh my Master to the nearest comodious place that we could find, and there as soon as he had written to you he dyed. An adventure Sir, said Vindorix to Floris, which challenges the tribute of a weeping eye, and I fear, if ill Fortune be not by some means of prevention made to change her course, the same may arrive to Cloriastes. To prevent that, returned Floris to him, we will make hast to him and perswade him to sit down form his [Page 83] hopeless suite and leave the excellent Dora­me, to her Gallant Alcidor, Cartagenes him­self, when he was dying, voting him the most worthy to possess her.

Dorame was going to speak, when a Lac­quey of Alcidors was brought into the Chamber and hindred her, presenting her a Letter which she first read privately to her­self and then aloud to the company in these words.

Alcidor to Dorame.

I had no design when I took leave of you but to accord a difference between two of my Friends; but I have experimented that my ill fortune destined me to somithing else. Yester­day I by chance met with Cartagenes, who aboarded me with so ill a discourse, that my ho­nour obliged me to make him little else of an­swer but that of my Sword in my hand. We fought, and though he had more valour than I, he had worse luck, it was my luck to make him fall. I reckon my fault very great that I have drawn my Sword, and that mortally, against one who offered service to you, and whom you justly esteemed. But by that goodness that is proper to you, I beseech you to pardon me, and I hope you will, considering among other things that [Page 84] without your anger I am sufficiently punisht for what I have done in that I must for a while deprive my self of the happyness of seeing you, not thinking [...]t fit for the present to make you see him who hath killed Cartagenes.

Dorame was troubled as much at this Let­ter as for the death of Cartagenes believing that Alcidor would leave of his pretensions of Love to her, out of apprehension of ma­ny dangers which he might possibly incurre in prosecuting them. Vindorix knowing what pinched her, acquainted as you are with the sentiments of Alcidor, said he to her, by the ill judgement which I see you make of him, you unsufferably wrong both his courage and his affection. He is none of those whose souls start back at the noise of leaves, or whose loves are unhinged by their more predominant fears. He is indeed moved when he is prickt in honour and bound to seek satisfaction, but it is not that he dreads a new quarrel or a new combate that he tells you he shall be without seeing you; it is only that he may not appear be­fore you with his hand dy'd, and reeking with the bloud of Cartagenes. Write to him to come to you, and you will soon see that he knows how to obey you. If he [Page 85] stayes not but till he is sent for returned Do­rame, I shall quickly see him here, for I shall quickly give him the summons of a letter. It is indeed, Couzen, said Roliman to her, no more than what is handsom on your part, and deserved on his, and you will (as far as can be seen) derive from it nothing but what is good. I am altogether of that mind, added Melian to her, and you will soone be convinced that nothing can defer him from presenting himself to you when he knows you desire it. Dorame re­lishing well the reasons of her Kinsmen and the inforcements of them which were made by Floris and Lucidas, presently took her Pen and drew these lines.

Dorame to Aleidor.

I Write not to you to blame you for what you have done, I am sensible of the just occasion which you had of serving your self with your best forces and address to preserve your life against those who wo [...]ld have ravisht it from you: It is only to oblige you to give me your company as soon as you can, your action not be­ing such that it should be punisht with slight or any thing of shame or horror. Cartagenes himself hath left sufficient testimonies to justifie [Page 86] you, and you will believe that I have recieved them, and approved them, when you see that the bearer of this Letter is Limonides who hath order to seek you through all the World.

Limonides very gladly taking the charge of carrying this Letter, as that which he said would be a great contentment to him amidst the displeasures which he had for his Masters death, and being gone away with it, Dorame who had her mind no more dis­eased with the frightful fansies of the night, rose from her bed, and sat down with her company to dinner. Risen from Table they went into the Gallery and there some­times walking, sometimes sitting, spent two or three hours in discoursing about Alcidor and Cartagenes, about the various traverses and effects of Love, and at last about Clo­riastes; reviving their apprehensions con­cerning him, that he might split himself against the same Rock that Cartagenes had. After which Floris and Lucidas consider­ing that it was time he was advised rather to be patient in missing than obstinate in at­tempting that which it was impossible for him ever to obtain, and which to seek to obtain, would in probability be fatall to his life, and also that they had no more of day [Page 87] left than they should need to conveigh them whither they were to go, they took congey of Dorame and her relations and went away. Their backs being turned, Dorame took her Uncle and Cousins into a private Chamber, and having made them sit down and seated her self, You know, Cousin, said she, directing her speech to Vindorix, that the arrival of Floris and Lucidas hindred you yesterday from carrying on the story of Al­cidor in that part of it where without your help it will remain defective, and that other impediments also have fallen in to day: But now we are at leasure to enjoy this diver­tisement; I intreate you therefore to favour us with it. I am ready, Madame, replyed Vindorix, to obey you, and after a little pause began thus.

Alcidor having receaved the desires of Lucimon and Lisantus to put himself into Pa­quin, the friendship which he and I had con­tracted, suffered us not to part, and, though I was alltogether unworthy of that respect, he would not enter the citty without my company. The day of our entrance the five hundred horse which he brought with him, and his presence together raysing and forti­fying the fallen courages of those whom the conscience of their crimes had filld with the [Page 88] apprehensions of punishment, we were wellcomed with so much honour, he for his part that Lucimon and Lisantus could not have receaved more, and I, for my part, that I never the like. The Magistrates and Gran­dees giving him this reception in the palace of Florisa, whom her Uncle Lucimon had left in Paquin after the death of her Father Orastes, the remarkes which she shewed of kindenesse toward him were such, that to­gether with me, many others that were there tooke notice that she was never accustomed to afford the like to any. He againe applyed himselfe to her in such a fashion, that the Muses seemed to sit upon his lippes and the Graces upon all his parts: and not content by that meanes to draw her respects to him­selfe he spake to her of me so much to my advantage that she spent complements upon me which I very well knew I had nothing that encouraged me to owne as my due, and with which I found myselfe more put to a stand than ever in my life besides.

The Governour and other Officers ha­ving intrusted us with the cheife commands of the Towne, wee without any supinenesse used them to the utmost of our power in gi­ving necessary orders for defending it, and that late enough; for within foure dayes [Page 89] after the passages were all seized by the King, the out workes attaqued and the seige for­med. We lay not still in this occasion, Alcidor had more gallantry and his Troopes more ambition of fighting, we made a salley, and in that first essay of our armes brought backe advantages over our beseigers which caused fires of joy to be lighted through all the City. Not satisfied with the triumph unless she saw him who had procured it, Florisa sent for Alcidor to come to her, and it was then that going along with him to her I percieved by her eyes, words and whole carriage not onely that his valour kept her from shaking under the feares which she had of falling into the hands of her fathers ene­mies but also that his person was a great deal more than indifferent to her. When wee were going from her, you have not onely Paquin to preserve, Alcidor, said she to him, you have also an unfortunate princesse under your guard, take heed therefore how you hazard your life since it is my support. In reply to this, I therefore make Esteem of Paquin, Madam, said Alcidor, because it holds so rich a treasure as the princesse Flo­risa. Knowing indeed whence and what you are I should goe against my Conscience, should I not set an higher value upon you [Page 90] than upon what I hold dearest to me in the world. Whatsoever considerations there­fore I can have, the ambition which I have of serving you will be sure to surmount them all, & it will I hope not onely supply me with boldness of heart but with prudence also to manage it. This reply mooving so violently her inmost veines, that there rose a sudden crimson from them and spred it selfe over her face; she left us with out saying any more but that she would have us see her often. And in this wee obeyed her command; for whatsoever imployments we had to remedy the disturbances which the enemy procure­dus, we forbore not to visit her twice every day, and after a while whither she desir'd him so to doe or that it came of his owne motion Alcidor tooke up a custome of going fre­quently to her without me. But on the other side whatsoever intreaties she used to him, and she used, besides that mentioned before, very many and earnest ones not to throw himselfe into danger, he forbore not fre­quently to ingage himselfe in the midst of the enemy, doing things which made every body have him in their mouths for a kinde of miracle.

If we were active, our beseigers were not idle, making atempts which for some time [Page 91] kept us day and night at worke. From which having one afternoone a little release I made use of it to goe visit Alcidor: but coming to his lodging. I found that he was gone to doe the same to Florisa. I neverthelesse went into his chamber, where finding a booke upon his table I opened it, and turning over the first leafe of it I saw a letter drop, which, out of a curiosity to know more of my friends particularities than I believed he had imparted to me, taking up and unfolding I read in it these words.

Florisa to Alcidor.

IF you have but a little consideration of the paine that I endure because I see you not so of­ten as I wish, I perswade my selve you will come to see me assoone as you have read this letter wherein I desire it. You too well know your owne merit and the influence which it hath upon me to make any question of the advantage which I derive from your converse. Make hast there­fore to me and involve not your selfe so much in the troubles of war as not by intermission to come and sweeten those of Florisa.

The fortune which I saw by this letter was arrived to Alcidor surprized me with a gust that was very acceptable to me, but not [Page 92] without an allay when I considerd that he might not draw all that satisfaction from the affections of so high a person which he might from those of a meaner. The letter for feare that if I left it, where I found it, it might bee found by some other as it had been by me, or else might bee wholly lost I carried with me to my lodgings; where assoone as I was entred Alcidor coming to seek me, all his discourse to me was of Florisa and particu­larly of the visit which he came from making to her, and in his discourses he could not with all his arts so well dissemble but that he often changed colour, and discovered by many testimonyes that another God besides Mars had made him his votary; but yet he tooke not any notice to me of the princesse's writing to him, nor did I therefore to him that I knew any thing of it. I on the contra­ry industriously abstained from speaking any­thing of her to him at all, much more of her merite. But the more I shunned that theam, the more he prest it. To see therefore whi­ther his passion would carry him I made it my buisiness to dissent from what he said, which he tooke so ill, that to heare him chide me would have disposed one to judge that I had committed some grosse enormity.

Here Dorame interposing, it is not a little [Page 93] displeasure, said she, which a Lover receaves when one aproves not the prayses which he bestowes upon her whom he loves. I told you what designe I had in doing so, resumed Vindorix and therefore I was not at all stir­red with what Alcidor, said to me, and I af­terwards changing my stile spake so much good of the Princess that he quickly changed his also and gave me better words than he e­ver before had done. I then againe introduced another subject, which was that of warre, but it was easy for me to perceave that those words of Canon, powder musket, pike, soun­ded not so well in his eares as those of Love, of Florisa, and of her graces.

After we had thus entertained our selves a while at my chamber he carried me to his, When a little after we were entered taking up the booke in which I had found the letter, he turned over the leaves, ran into his closet, left no place unsearched, no servant unque­stioned for what he mist. I asking him what it was that he inquired for, he told me that it was a paper of great importance to him. Far­ther I prest him, not for feare of being suspe­cted of taking away that of which the ab­sence put him into so great pain; But when I saw him by degrees calme himselfe and his spirit grow to some stillness, I secretly so [Page 94] that he not at all perceaved me, put the letter under the tapestry of his table where he had not yet searched, and then as if by chance threw downe one of the sides of the tape­stry so that it let the letter dropp. Having with joy snatched it up, see that, sai [...] he to me, in which lies comprehended all my estate of happinesse. What so important treasnre can it conceale, returned [...] to him, that should make you speake so highly of it? Nor Riches nor honours, Vindorix, said he againe, doe at all content us if our friends are ignorant that we possess them. Was I monarch of the world, I should not be sati­stied if Vindorix had not knowledge of my scepter. I asking him than if something new had happened to him which lay hid from me. Reade this letter, my deare companion, said he to me and you will know what a liberall benefactress Fortune hath beene to me with which words, he putting it into my hand, I tooke it and after some ceremony that I used to it read aloud what I had more than once read to my selfe.

At these words, industrious cheater that you are said Dorame to Vindorix, had Alci­dor knowne your fraudulent subtleties your close correspondencies would have beene in danger to have been turned into an irrecon­cileable [Page 95] discord. Why returned Vindorix to her, did I doe any thing in this which can be accounted a breach of freindship or which the best freind in the world would not have done? For all my talking, said Dorame to him againe, I really blame you not at all; but I pray goe on with [...]our relation. To goe on with it, resumed Vindorix, Alcidor after I had read the letter told me that he had things to recount to me which I could not heav without surprize, and presently used this discourse to me.

It is a strange power that of love, which we in vain inforce our selves to resist. Who would have ever thought that I who perpe­tually made a mocke of love, should come to be shut up in this beseiged City to be made subject to that which I made a mocke of? I thought of vanquishing, and I am vanquisht; I aimed at triumphing over brigades of Ho­stile men, and I am overcome by a maide a friend. You, divine Florisa, have inslaved me to your lawes, but by a force the swee­test in the world as well as the most com­pulsive. You cannot but remember, my Vindorix, the day, the houre, the moment that we had first the blisse of wayting upon her, say truly, have you ever met with a face more beautifull, a proportion more [Page 96] exact, a spirit more fine, a port more grace­full? I know not how she appeared to your eyes, but in mine she had altogether as much beauty and Majesty (be it spoken without injury to her virtue) as ever the poets attri­buted to the Mistresse of the God of warre. Interposing here, having then and since, said I, with a [...] considerd the quali­tyes wherwith heaven hath furnisht her, I cannot say that she hath parallel. This is, rejoined Alcidor, to judge of things as they deserve, and since to you I neither ought to dissemble nor will, I acknowledge that from the first moment wherein I saw this unpa­ralleld woman, I conceaved a passion for her; all the time that we were then with her, I thought of nothing but of her, I scarce considerd that I was in Paquin to defend it and had my selfe also to take care of. When we were parted I set my selfe seriously to study both of her perfection, and my owne change which sprang from them, and I strongly endeavoured to beate out the power which I found had surprized my heart, but I was forced to leave my selfe to be vanquisht by that which I plainely saw I was not able to fight with.

The Princess you know, added he, from the good success which we had of our swords [Page 97] when our beseigers first approached the Cit­ty, drawing an occasion of sending for u [...] to give us the congratulations which she thought fit, it was from that time that I knew that she tooke a more than a common if not a very affectionate interest in me. One must indeed have been blinde, interrup­ted I him, or else wholly deprived of judg­ment not to draw that conclusion from all her deport towards you, particularly what other interpretation than that could be made of those words which she used to you at par­ting, you have not onely Paquin to preserve but also an unhappy Princess to guard; take heed therefore how you hazard your life least by loosing that you doe injury to mine by despoiling it of its support.

After this, went he on, I many times visi­ted her without your knowledge, and as many times received testimonies of her kinde inclinations towards me. One time among the rest she was pleased in plaine tearmes to tell me that my person and hu­mor were very agreeable to her, and that she made more account of me than of all men in the world together; and I let not the opportunity slip by without improoving it, but tooke courage from what she said to de­clare to her in the most respectfull phrase [Page 98] that I could invent, that I had dedicated me selfe entirely to her as to the most absolute peice of divinity among mortalls. In answer to which, you doe not at all disoblige me, Alcidor, said she, in letting me know that you have an affection for me: Love me as much as you are deare to me, and I aske no more to be the most contented woman that lives. Impregnated with joy to heare her say so, The Goodness, Madam, replyed I to her, which you are pleased to testifie towards me fills me with an inebriating glory, ban­krupts my gratitude, and leaves me nothing to doe in the world but by your premission to be all my life in the quality of your slave, paying as much as I can of what I owe to your birth merite and bounty. Her Gentle­woman coming in, as I said so, I held my tongue and laid a restraint upon my carriage; seeing which, have no reserve, Alcidor, said she to me, because of Leonora, for she knowes all my secrecies; from the moment that I loved your vertue, I made her ac­quainted with it, and she instead of dissua­ding me from it, represented many things to me on your side, which served to make me more highly esteeme you. Hearing this, I must be stupified, Madame, returned I to her, not to thinke that I have an obligation [Page 99] to her which is not easily discharged, and I should deserve nothing but ill offices from her instead of good ones, should I not seek occasion of thanking her. With wich words pulling a diamond from my finger I intreated her to wear it as pledge that I was sensible of the favours which she had done me, and she by the princesse's command accepted it. After this, Love, instead of abasing my cou­rage raised it, and beleiving it my duty to performe something answerable to the ele­vation of my affections and to the honour that the princess deigned me, I often with you, Vindorix, you know, saught occa­sions of remarkable actions, and one day especially having no more eyes than love that conducted me, I blindely precipitated myselfe into dangers, out of which had not you drawne me, I cannot see but that I had in all probability perisht. Returning victori­ous to the City, the paines which we had taken in the fight requiring that we should a little rest our selves, we as you may remem­ber left one another to go to our several lodgings. Come to mine, it was not many moments that I had shut my selfe into my closet and laid me downe upon my couch, not so much to repose my selfe as to thinke of Florisa, when one of her pages brought me this letter from her.

[Page 100]

Florisa to Alcidor.

I Have heard such great things of the enter­prise that you come from making upon our enemyes, and of the success that you have gained over them, that the affecton which I bear you carries me to rejoyce at them. But there is nevertheless that which troubles me extre­mely, it is a continuall feare that you should fall a victime on the feild of battell, or at least receive some horrid wound. What ill offices does your valour render me? Restraine, I conjure you, this heate of fighting, rest your selfe from your labours, and send me word how you doe, and if your health is in that condition that I wish it, come to see me to morrow morning.

In answer to these lines I drew and sent these that follow.

Alcidor to the Princess Florisa.

Madam,

YOu make me blush with the Eulogies that you give me and with the care that you take of me. I am altogether undeserving of them: but the imployment in which I am, suffers me not to bee less active than I am, and if I have made sally without your command, it is because the good of the publicke required it. Ex­cuse [Page 101] the affection that I beare it, since it does not in the least diminish that which I have for the most deserving Princess that the sun beholds. For my health I never felt myselfe better, and shall not faile to waite upon you at the time that you appoint to render you an account of my actions.

Going the next morning and surprizing her in bed with Leonora entertaining her, after she had made me take a seate by her bedsside and given me her hand, which without considering that it was too much for me to attempt, I kist when I tooke it, I at her command gave her a relation of the sal­ley which we the day before had made. While we were talking about which, her hands playing with my locks, her bosome by stealth discovered it selfe with beauties which I greedily fed upon with my eyes, but of which I durst not owne the relish which I had in my mind. The respect in­deed which I had for her put a strict bridle upon all my carriage towards her: which she observing, as if on purpose to make me use more familiarity with her, she used more than formerly with me. I tooke the overture and imprinted an hundred hot kisses on her hand; which she allowing I ventured the same to her face and met with [Page 102] no repulse. Our caresses thus rising by de­grees but no higher than was fitting, they were ready to melt away my soule with delight, when a stop was put to them by the coming in of the Governor of the Town. Hee held discourses to her about her Uncle Lucimon, and they were of such concernement as required her to write to him. Which being done, and the Gover­nor gone, she told me she would rise. I withdrew therefore into the antichamber, where meeting with her Gentleman, I, while she was dressing, entertained myselfe with him, and learnt a great many things of him; particularly whatsoever craft he used to hide it, I observed that he had a designe of di­scovering whether or no the Princess loved me. To make me disclose he told me that never had she esteemed any man so much as me, and that she had allwayes my name and actions in her mouth. To this I an­swerd, that it was proper to those that were great to speake well of those that were mean, to the end to make their own vertue shine more clearely, and to shew by com­mending those that have little merite that they know how to give true and just pray­ses to them who deserve them, and that if she at all considerd me I well knew it was [Page 103] only because she was so good as to thinke that I might possibly bee helpfull to the de­fence of the City. Placidas not finding my discourse suitable to his expectation, turned his tongue to other subjects; but I insensibly grew upon him and at last brought him to advertise me that Lucimon had by a letter which he had lately written to him, given him charge watchfully to observe all the actions of his neice, and withall to shew me the letter; reading which I saw that the visits which I made to Florisa were knowne to that prince and suspected by him. Ha­ving thus learnt of him what it was, very conducible to my advantage to know, I with the best arguments that I could use persua­ded him to be faithfull to his princess and to informe her of whatsoever he should know was practised to her detriment: par­ticularly I advised him to give her notice presently of that which her Uncle had wrote to him, but without signifying to her that I knew any thing of it, adding that I should so well manage the tenure of my cariage for the future that Lucimon should finde nothing in it to censure.

According to my advise as soone as Placi­das knew that he might enter the princesse's Chamber he went to her and gave her the [Page 104] same intelligence that he had given me. Upon which sending him immediately for me, scarce was I within her Chamber dore but she told me before him what he had told her, not without discovering an extreame discomposure, and saying all that could bee said against a man, against Luci­mon. After she had by words and teares disharged some of her vexation, I, with the respect that was due to her and with the best motives that I could thinke of, intreated her not to be troubled at the business, adjoining that rather than she should by occasion of me receive any thing of displeasure, if my being deprived of her sight would remedye it, though it would be a greater punish­ment to me than I knew how to live under, I would without disputing it banish my selfe from her presence. Hearing me say so, I am so far, Alcidor, reparted she to me, from having a minde that you should absent yourselfe from me because of Lucimon, that I would have you doe me the kindness of visiting me oftener then heretofore, that being so ill treated by an uncle I may amidst my unhappinesse have the consolation of being succoured by one who hath no tie upon him to doe it. Could it not suffice him to have shut me up in this miserable City [Page 105] which two potent Princes have for the ob­ject of their indignation, and which could not keep it selfe from falling under their power, if your valour and conduct forbad it not, without going about to double my im­prisonment by restraining me from seeing those who can give my spirit some relaxa­tion? what strange Barbarousness is this and how little used by an Uncle to a neice? Does he feare that I have a minde to take from him the pretensions which he makes to the kingdom and to place the crowne upon Alcidor's head, that he would not have him come neare me? He is indeed abundantly worthy of a scepter, but both his intentions and mine are juster and more moderate than to aspire to any such thing, was it, as it is not, in our power to attaine it. No, No Alcidor, added she to me, you must not forsake me, it would be too much cruelty in you to abandon a Princess that breathes not, but by your assistance, and expects not her deliverance but by your meanes. In re­sponse to this I said all to her that love and duty could suggest to me, to demonstrate to her my zeale of living and dying for her. All which, both what she said and I, Placidas hearing, and not being able to hear without being certaine that there was a more than [Page 106] ordinary kindeness between us, he humbly offered her to serve her to the utmost of his capacity against her Uncle; and being there­upon commanded by her to esteem me as one to whom she had great obligations, he intreated me to beleive that I was Master of his heart and that he would never have any other inclinations than to doe me all the good offices that he could. After which he and Leonora leaving us together, we confer­red a while about Lucimon, thence we pro­ceeded to testifie our affections to one ano­ther, I with the best language that I could put together, and she with as many favours as her vertue and modesty would allow her to bestow upon me. She withall enjoined me not to speak a syllable of our corre­spondencies to any body; no, not to Vin­dorix, said she, for he is too much affected with glory to like that you should ingage your selfe in love at a time so proper for Armes. This is the sole reason why I have till now concealed from you my love and the good fortune that I have had in it; You therefore ought not to take it ill from me, especially considering that Florisa hath no sooner given me liberty of acquainting you with the secret (for it was but this after­noone that she gave it me) but I have made [Page 107] use of it to let you see that I have nothing of concerne which I am willing to reserve from your knowledge. To this I answered that I lookt upon the injunction which the Prin­cess had laid upon him, not as an effect of her ill will to me, but as a fruite of her pru­dence which obliged her to distrust all the world in an affaire of so much consequence, that I should have thought it very ill done of him if he had not obeyed it, and that I had a better sense of the favour that she had done me in giving him leave to impart so much to me as he now had done, than ever to im­ploy it otherwise than to both their ad­vantages.

I having said so, since that time, went he on, I have very often been with her without any body having cognisance of it but Placidas and Leonora, and I was never with her but she gave me demonstrations of her affection towards me, which as they bred in me a rich delight, were enough also to have begot in me a most fond vaine-glory, if by a sober reflection upon my selfe I had not been throughly acquain­ted with my unworthiness of them. That you may see, how far I am in her esteeme, added he, stepping to a little boxe of pearl taking a paper out of it and bringing it to [Page 108] me, read these few lines. Doing as he desired me, I found they held such sense as this.

Though possibly there bee few preten­sions of marriage so exalted, which my birth would not authorize me to make, the worth which continually represents it selfe to me in you hath so much of magneticke influence upon me that my heart cannot keep it selfe from being drawne and tied fast to you and that I cannot forbeare telling you so. And this you shall never faile of knowing, so long as you render your selfe capable of doing so. But make no ill judg­ment of my freenesse, for my virtue is no otherwise interested by my affection than it ought to be, and as it is most true that I love you, so is it also that I love you in such a manner as chastity and sageness allow, and that I looke you should continue in the tearmes of respect that are due to me.

When I had done reading these words, not to detaine you any longer with this concerne, adjoined Alcidor, I am at pre­sent mounted to the highest step of happi­ness that a vertuous love without marriage is able to bring me to, and, if I may say so [Page 109] without imputation of arrogance, I have reason to thinke that I may be to morrow the husband of Florisa, if I will. She every day indeed presses me to be so, and though I upon a manifold consideration beleive that I shall never have her for my wife I have promised to make her so as soon as the seige is raised, and in the meane time to pre­pare my selfe for it by gaining as large a stock of honour as I can.

He thus concluding his discourse to me, I told him that he had certainly done very well in satisfying the princess with those assurances that she desired, and that I made no great question but the terme which he had taken for marrying her would produce such a revolution of affaires as would set him at liberty to doe in that affaire accor­ding as he should see cause. Then, not thin­king it fitting to counsell a man whom his discretion made him act well in every thing, I onely let him know how deeply I accoun­ted my selfe in his debt, for communicating to me the particularities of his affections, and presently we parted.

Having such within our walls as practised for Polianis and carried on conspiracies of moment enough to have quickly destroyed [Page 110] us if we had not happily smelt them out and provided against them, we were eight dayes in remedying this desease which done we made our beseigers see that wee had not lay still but to take breath that we might fall upon them with the more life, cutting our way up to their trenches, putting them in­to a great disorder and bringing backe a great number of prisoners.

There was againe nothing worth mentio­ning attempted on our side till one day Al­cidor without me, whither I was otherwise busied or that he had some other reason not to take me along with him, issued out of the Town accompanied onely with ten vo­lunteers that put themselves under his con­duct. They were presently set upon by twice as many and were at length constrained to give way to their strength and retire. But before Alcidor made his owne retreat, he by amuzing the enemy gave his party leasure to make theirs. Upon which occasion staying a little too long behind, after he had maintained fight as long as he was able, to put himselfe out of the danger that he was in, he leaped his horse over a great ditch; Thereupon one of those whom he had to deale with vainely enough u [...]braided him that he had the advantage of making him [Page 111] fly. To him, the advantage is, returned Al­cidor, that you are so many, were you a little fewer you should quickly see me come backe to you. It shall be your fault if you come not, said the other againe, for I promise you, you shall have to doe with none but me: try the adventure and you shall see I will attend you as it in honour be­comes Lisimax. Hearing him say so, Alcidor was about to jumpe backe to him, but he at the instant perceived about halfe a score horsemen galloping to intercept his way; he therefore set spurs to his horse and re­tired.

Got into the Town he came and recoun­ted to me what had befallen him: he told me withall that Lisimax being the favourite of Florimen and of an applauded name, and there, therefore being a great measure of glory to be gotten by a single combate with him, he resolved to demand it of him. The reasons which he alleadged for his resolu­tion inducing me to approve it, after I had intreated him to let me be his second but could not obtaine it of him, we concluded that it was necessary for him to have the con­sent of the Princess and of the Counsell of warr in the business; and we went first to the Princess, to whom he declaring that his [Page 112] honour put him upon a duell with Lisimax, she before me could not forbear having her selfe extremely troubled at it, and en­deavoured all that she was able to turne him from it. But when she saw she could not pervail with him, Goe then, said she to him, and fight this Giant, and heaven re­serve for you the victory. From her we went to the Governour, at whose house the cheif officers being convened, Alcidor pro­pounded to them what he desired and with­out difficulty procured their leave to doe as he thought good. From them I waited upon him home; by the way whither, The King, said he to me, beleives Lisimax in­vincible, and so doe others also; if there­fore I overcome him I shall acquire a glory which will not quickly dye: but if my ill fortune on the other side will have him tri­umph over me, this satisfaction I may pretend to, that I am vanquisht by one of the bravest Cavaleirs of our age. It is almost impossible that you should not conquer him, replyed I to him, so much advantaged as you are. Was there indeed nothing but the favour of Florisa that is enough to make you irresistable, and I make no doubt but the prayers which she sends up for you will be heared and draw down upon you the bles­sing of heaven.

[Page 113] We were in these tearms when we came to his lodgings; where he making me stay and sup with him, during supper I againe set upon him with the best rhetorike that I had to persuade him to make me of his party, but all to no effect. Risen from table we went into his closet, where he gi­ving me a book to reade, I had not peru­sed many lines, before he had drawn these and came and shewed them me.

Alcidor to Lisimax.

YOu may well remember what yesterday past betweene us, and you live in a higher reputation than to beleive any thing meane of yourselfe. If therefore you can get leave of the King as I have done of those upon whom I depend, it shall lye upon you if I come not to day to sight you at the head of your army. You are a better man at armes than to refuse to fight with Lance and Sword; with these I shall waite upon you if I shall finde your resolu­tion such as I desire it. I shall expect it with impatience, yet am better ascertained of your valour than to beleive that you will shun the occasion of making it appeare.

Having considered these words I assured him who askt my judgment of them that [Page 114] the moderation and civility of them was such as could not be betterd, and as his enemy could not but commend. Satisfied with which approbation he resolved to think of no other language but to send it the next morning as it was. I could scarce sleep all the night, I was so restless to see again the day and Alcidor; going to him assoon as I could get up after it was light, I found him risen and upon the point of sending his chalenge. It was carried by a Herauld with ceremony enough, and it was recea­ved by Lisimax with as much Candor, who after he had been with the King sent back this answer.

Lisimax to Alcidor.

I Honour your valour more than not to consent to the design which it hath of trying mine. We will fight therefore to morrow at sun rise in the presence of both armyes, since you desire it, and I have my Kings permission to doe it, and our armes shall be the the same that you have prescribed. Thinke to defend your selfe well, for I have a strong desire to attaque you well; the glory will remain with the conquerour.

The Herauld bringing backe this answer, together with on assignement of the place [Page 115] where the two champions should act their parts and the two armyes stand spectators, not without an assurance from the King, that there should on his side be no act of hostility committed till all were returned to their former quarters, he having pledged the same in our name to the King, Alcidor had apparent in his face the characters of a gal­lant exultancy of spirit; the cheifs applyed themselves to take care about the marching forth of the army the next morning, and the Princess had a hundred times in an hour day and night by turnes in her breast, what with her hopes, what with her feares. But he who gave her the occasion of those vicis­situdes, spending all his time with her, brought her before he left her to a more settled temper, and at parting received of her together with her good wishes a very rich scarf, imbroiderd with her name.

The next morning in a superb array marched the army out of Paquin to the place appointed, where the other also failed not of rendring it selfe, Florisa seated her selfe in an eminent place where she might see the combate and be able by her regards to animate Alcidor. All things in short were ready, and presently appeared the two competitors of honour. Before they came [Page 116] to their stations the King gave Lisimax his sword and represented to him that he had an enemy who was both excellently skilfull ad valiant. The Princess wisht that she had had the liberty of doing some such thing for Alcidor, but she could doe no more than send him secretly by Placidas a bracelet of her hair. After this, and that I had put my­self in the head of the cavalry of which Alcidor was commander, with resolution either to dye or vanquish in case there should be any treachery (though this as it after­wards appeared needed not, there being nothing attempted against the publike faith) Lisimax and Alcidor chose their judges, took their places and the trumpets soun­ding ran against one another with a swift­ness like that of a furious wind. Their success was very different; for Alcidor receiving the lance of Lisimax in the bow of his saddle so that it flew in peices, he with his owne lance peirced his horses shoulder and belly, with his sword cut in pieces his bridle, and disarmed him. Having thus almost in a minute dispatched the fight, not without all the feilds and City ringing with the shouts of our army and people that were upon the walls, he sent the sword which he took from his adversary to the King [Page 117] who had given it him, and presently both the armyes retired, theirs to their ordinary posts, and ours into the Towne. Never man of Alcidors condition received more honour in a day than he did in this, by the order of the magistrates bonfires for some hours together lightened, and Canons thundred in all parts of the City; no peice of triumph was omitted that uses to accom­pany famous victories; the Grandees gave him complements, and all sorts of people ac­clamations, which declared them most pa­thetically transported with what he had done, and the replyes which he made to them augmented their transports with their elegancy and Generosity. But all the rest was cheap to the price of those congratu­lations which he received from the Prin­cess; they were as expressive of joy in her selfe and of honour to him as her exuberant ingeny prompted with her vehement affe­ction could dictate to her; and he in answer to them attributed all his happiness to the prayers which she had sent to heaven for him, and to the other favours that she had conferred upon him, and that with a rhe­toricke, modesty, gallantry and respect­fullness which gave her new occasions of ex­tolling and caressing him.

[Page 118] This action of Alcidor coming to the knowledge of Lusimon and Lisantus was very differently received by them. Luci­mon fearing it would prevail with his neice to consider him yet more advantageously than she did, vext him selfe at it with a most disingenuous cancetous malice, and spea­king of it upon all occasions most detra­ctingly himselfe, caused others also to spread reports of it altogether contrary to truth: but it shon with a more triumphant splendor than to be so obscured. Lisantus on the other side was himselfe continually where ever he came discoursing of it as of that which he could not encomiaze enough, and set his friends on worke also to proclaim to the world its grandeur. What is it more, said he often, to have gained all than to have vanquisht Lisimax the most daringly active man of his party.

But while Alcidor had good success in the particular undertakings of his sword, as also in his loves (for he and Florisa in despight of Lucimons malignant intentions continued to live in their accustomed intelligences. Pla­cidas who had received his commands to de­stroy them (favouring them as much as he could), the general concernement of the seige went on very ill on our side; the royall [Page 119] forces continually increast by fresh supplyes, ours consumed a pace by sickness and sal­lyes, and we were at length brought to such a pass, that what because we were for the most part beaten, what to preserve our re­maines wee durst not stir out of the inclo­sure of our bullwarkes. Scarcity of victualls also grew upon us so that the people who had before only groaned privately under their sufferings without daring to complain publickely, now mutinied for bread and rifled severall houses of the most noted Bur­gesses. To lay this dangerous disturbance the Governor and those others in power at whose nodds the large but rascall body of the multitude was wont to move, fed them with hopes of great things which Al­cidor and I understood not. Among other things they told them that if they would have but a little patience, they should quickly see themselves delivered from the seige and all their other miseries together, and that there was but a moment almost to wait for that fortunat event which would render them completely happy. Presently after when Alcidor and I thought of nothing but the meanes of resisting those that begirt us and dayly grew upon us, we at counsell of war to our grand astonishment had [Page 120] newes brought us that the King was killed with the stab of a knife. Struck with horrour at this blacke paricide, we had it redoubled at the excesses of joy with which we saw first the assembly of Officers resent it, then most of the inhabitants of Paquin and strangers that defended it, reputing it a mi­racle which the powers above had wrought for their sakes. But as well workt tempers are never friends to baseness, the Princess in our presence regretted this tragicke fall of the supreme father of her countrey with as serious tears as she had done that of her own father.

In sequel of this most proditorious assa­ [...]inate Lucimon, who had alone as much pleasure in his soul at it as had all the whole rebellion together, not daring to step the next way into the throne him­selfe, though profoundly designing to doe it in effect, gave the title of King to Prince Dolimbus who was prisoner; and, Polianis drawing of his forces from the seige of Pa­quin to carry on expeditions necessary to his regall interests, thither he came, and con­veighed away his neice thence, shutting up in prison Placidas, whom he suspected of being a freind to her intimacies with Alci­dor, and suffering only Leonora to continue [Page 121] still in her service. Where he placed he [...] Alcidor was not able to finde out; exaspe­rated at which and at his ill usage of her upon his account, he had taken a severe revenge upon him for it, had he not been hindred by the high authority that guarded him: he was how soever about to forsake his party when Lisantus came to him and refixt him to it by conjurations too strong to be broken through. Alcidor being pervailed with to sticke close to the side of that il­lustrious man, I resolved to run the same course with him, they both strictly▪ enough obliging me to it. But as if good fortune had a mind that I should withdraw from that pernicious revolt which I had too long assisted, I was by a dangerous sickness which I fell into constrained to quit both Lisantus and Alcidor, and retire home, where I continued a long time ill. This, cozin, ended Vindorix, bowing to Dorame, is all that I am able to tell you of the adven­tures of your lover more particularly than can my Lord our Uncle; I shall therefore here leave off to give him way to accom­plish the relation of them.

At these concluding words of Vindorix Rolimon preparing himselfe to carry on what he had begun, Dorame motion'd, considering [Page 122] they had been a great while shut up in a chamber, to defer a little the prosecution of the narrative and goe take the aire: that which the company approving, after a col­lation brought in and ended they walkt abroad. But before they had spent halfe an houre in their walk there fell a great rain which forced them to take covert, and there they continued in various converse till they were called to supper. Supper done they at Dorame's request returned to the place where Vindorix had performed his part of the story, and there Rolimon having seated himself with the others by him, went on with his part to this effect.

Polianis justly irritated by the murder committed on the sacred person of his so­vereigne and brother-in-law Florimen de­creed to take revenge of it or to perish in seeking it. Being also the next man of his line, he resolved to succeed him in the throne or to be laid with him in the dust in attempting it. Carried by the interest of which determinations from the seige of Pa­quin into the Province of Xanton and being, to stop his progress, followed thither by Lucimon, he marched up to him, defeated his army and drove him to seek his safety in a dishonorable flight. Pursuing his vi­ctory [Page 123] he drew up again to Paquin, took the suburbs, gained other conquests and advantages, and compelled Lucimon to run before him as if he carried lighthing in his hand to chastise him. In none of these un­fortunat proceedings was Alcidor, for though Lucimon earnestly endeavoured to have him with him, whither the more ea­sily to destroy him or the better to have an eye upon his actions, he would never march under his conduct, but gave himselfe wholly to Lisantus who being ingaged in as weighty imployments as any other of his party had himselfe a particular army under him. But the notable successes of Polianis causing Lu­cimon, Lisantus and all the other captaines of the league to make one body of their for­ces, and the consideration of their numbers in which they far exceeded Polianis, ray­sing their courages, which the abundance of blood spilt in the last celebrated battel had drawn low, and carrying them to venture another feild with him; it was in that me­morable day that Alcidor practised all the offensive and defensive gallantries of war, that he flew among the rankes, overturning them, slaughtering them, breaking them in peices like a swiftwinged thunder, that he carried victory whither soever he carried [Page 124] his sword. He indeed performed so much both of the commander and souldior that those against whom he performed it with a generall consent cried out, At the blue scarfe, (It was Florisa's kindeness which drest him with that remark), on his being overcom depends our conquest; and ac­cordingly all that had courage exercised it against him; Polianis in particular dischar­ged pistolls with him and laboured all that he could to make him his prisoner, but he was bravely succoured by Lisantus. In short, I have heard a Cavaleir of his troop say, who was in this occasion mained for the rest of his life, that with some volun­teers who accompanied him into the hot­test of the [...]ight he kept the fortune of the day a great while in ballance. But having had two brothers who fought by his side and did, like him, things worthy of most lasting monument for the uncommoness of them, killed by it (the one of them carried his bowells a long time in his hand, the other when he was dropping from his horse tur­ned upon the enemy that he might die facing them) and being set upon on all sides, he was at length filled with wounds which cau­sed him to be carried out of the battell. His ill fortune was the whole armies of which [Page 125] he was, their efforts, as if they could not fight without him, languisht as soon as he was gone, and there being no body that fought with the aire of Alcidor but the re­doubtable Lisantus, Polianis every where traverst the phalanxes and battalions with a force which quickly compelled those against whom he imployed it to put their nose in the earth with a rout and loss the most no­torious that they ever before receaved.

While Alcidor kept his bed of his wounds some of his neighbours who were his enemies having knowledge that he was unable to stir, and that his brothers were slain, brought to one of his houses, lying a dayes journey from Paquin, Indians that set fire to it and burnt it. This malicious act not having the power to trouble his great minde so much but that within a few weekes he was got perfectly well, as soon as he was so, he watch fully observed the marches of those that had done it and within a few dayes met with them as he desired. Having a troop of select men with him he fell upon them with a violence by which they who were acquainted with the blowes of Lisan­tus and Alcidor might easily have guest him to be one of them, against which notwith­standing, thinking of nothing less than those [Page 126] two renowned warriors, and only imagi­ning that they had to doe with a troop who had met them by chance they at first made a resistance stout enough; but he lif­ting up his visour and naming himselfe to them, they immediately betook themselves to flight as their best defence. They fled some one wayes some another with all the speed that a guilty conscience and a feare of punishment could give them: but he, from whom they fled, and his company pursued them every way with such a swift and well managed fury that they had in a moment or two got them into their power. Which done, could you think, you barbarous people, cried he to them, that heaven would leave unpunished the outrage that you have done me? or could you beileve that I was so void of a soul as not to be sen­sible of it, or such a coward as not to seek you out? saying so, he ordered a dozen of them to be bound to trees, and causing fire and straw to be brought represented to them the just reason that he had to burn them in re­quitall of their burning of his house. There being not one of them that did not sentence himselfe as sufficiently deserving this pu­nishment, they perpared themselves to die: but when they were surrendring themselves [Page 127] to the [...]lames, I content myselfe, said he to them, causing them to be released and cutting some of their bands himselfe, to have made you affraid and given you to see that it is in my hands to deprive you of life; live and learne henceforward to doe well; I give you your liberty to goe whither you have a mind. Treated thus by him whom they had used most unworthily they exprest to him a repentance of their offence which banisht all ill remembrance of it out of his mind, they adored him as one of more than humane goodness and superstitiously enough to have raised temples and altars to him if they had judged he would have liked it, they went home with resolutions never to give blow against the party of which he was, and after they had been a little time there came and presented to him in reparation of the dammage that he had su­stained by their meanes a considerable sum of money: but he would by no meanes be brought to receive it, telling them that that which he valued was their freindship and not their coine. It is true though he refused their silver, he could not but accept of other presents which they urged upon him of horses and armes.

After this rendring himselfe with Lisantus [Page 128] who from the scatterings of the last feild had gathered together a considerable body both of horse and foot, and seeking occasions of keeping his sword in exercise, he one day going abroad with only fifty Gentlemen met two companies of Carabins of four­score men apeice. At sight of whom exa­mining the courage of those that were with and finding it such as he desired, he ranged them in two squadrons and having orderd them to follow him slowly and when he gave the signall to come up and charge, one the one company and the other the other, rode a little on before them. The enemy seeing him, very advantageously horst as he was, come straight up to them upon a small gallop, all at once made their salute to him; and in return to it he and his fol­lowers were in an instant upon them, gave them a volley of shot with which many of them tumbled, and falling in amidst the confusion with an impetuosity which is not to be exprest, quickly laid a great number of them more upon the ground, and forced the rest, to yeild themselves prisoners part of them, part of them to fly.

Polianis in the interim, not blinding him­selfe with his prosperities, but precisely ob­serving the motions of his enemies and mana­ging [Page 129] his affaires according to the best maxi­mes and rules of prudence, when having endeavoured to concile his people to his go­vernement by sweetness, he saw himselfe forced by their obstinacy to use steele and blood, he laid seige anew to Paquin, not without the inhabitants rising in his cause, nor without their being stilled and drawne back from him by the Governor and Magi­strates. For the better defence of it Luci­mon would have had Alcidor put himself again into it; but Florisa was not there to oblige him to doe so, and he had been too ill used by that prince to observe his desire. He kept in the feild, where making continuall courses to and fro, he molested the Kings forces more than any of his party. In par­ticular having gotten certain intelligence that at such a time there would be a broad an important convoy of the enemy consisting of three hundred horse and as many Fantas­s [...]ns, and which way they would pass, he put himselfe with two hundred horse in am­buscade in a wood, and there attending till they came, when he saw his time charged the Cavalry with a fury which they were not able to resist but were routed, cut in peices and taken: the Fantassins in the mean time saving themselves by help of [Page 130] the wood, but leaving what they were con­veighing to the disposall of the conqueror. Among those that were taken were Melam­pus and [...]o [...]ilus, Lords whom Alcidor knew and who were retiring from the Kings army upon the account of ill health. To them he restored their liberty and caused all their equipage also to be returned, for which they have ever since been of the number of the best friends that he hath had in the world. A great man who observed him af­ter the fight leaning against a tree with his armes shining with silver, with his sword in his hand bloody up to the hilt and with the visour of his cask put up and discove­ring his face hath severall times since said, that he could not imagine a more gracefull sight than he then appeared to him, or a more perfect resemblance of Mars taking breath after a conquest. At this defeat of his men the King was very much troubled, but being of a disposition that carried him to commend brave actions he highly extolled this of Alcidor and named him one of the most gallant men of his side.

The miseries of Paquin being at length by the pressures of the seige grown to incre­dible extremities, all things seemed inclined to put it into the hands of Polianis, and its [Page 131] grand, officers urged by the mutinous and mournfull cryes of all sorts of people and by their own necessities, were treating with him about a speedy surrender when they were incouraged so stand out a while longer by intelligence which they had brought them that Ostravius was coming apace with a po­tent army to releive them; And they were not disappointed, for within a few dayes the King drew of all his forces to go offer that famed Captaine battel; but he would not be drawn to venture such a dangerous cast, thinking it enough to succour the cheif Town, and take some others and retire; Nor was Polianis able either to force him to doe the on, or to hinder him from doing the other. Seeing which he fell to work with severall small Towns and took them, and some of great consequence: he made preparations also for invironing Xanton; which when Ostravius and Lucimon could no longer doubt of, they commended that Ri­vall of Paquin to the tuition of Lisantus and Alcidor; Lisantus in quality of Governor and Alcidor as his assistant, and they discharged their trust with stupendi­ous performances: whatsoever honour put them upon they failed not of under­taking [Page 132] and whatsoever they undertook they failed not of having [...]crowned with honour: they by a salley which they made forced the army that begirt them to with­draw to a good distance from the walls, and though they were afterwards brought into great straights for want of victualls they notwithstanding held it undauntedly out till the aforesaid princes came and compelled the King to rise from before them and leave them at liberty.

A while after the King, being infinitely troubled that he could see no good end in the prospect which lay before him of his people's obstinacies and miseries, to unde­ceive it possible those who had left them­selves to be abused by the specious pretexts that were set up against him, and by that meanes stifle that hidra of the rebellion whose heads recruited as fast as he lopt them of, publisht a declaration which ser­ved very happily for a foundation of that obedience which many of his subjects that were in arms against him were preparing for him in their minds. It particularly put Lisantus and Alcidor upon considering and weighing of things which they had before very little or not at all thought of. But being the principall springs by which the [Page 133] Union moved, they thought it not noble to leave in the lurch those that depended upon them, and who could not long subsist but would be utterly undone without them. They therefore kept on their way with their wonted vigor, but Alcidor not with his wonted success. Whither Fortune had a mind to cast a blot amidst his glories that so he might not boast he had impeded her from her changeableness of motion, or whi­ther heaven thought fit to animadvert upon him for using his sword against his rightfull soveraignes Florimen and Pol [...]anis by a cross adventure which should take it out of his hand, he happened to be encountred by a force which gave him the hottest work that he had ever had experience of▪ They were many of them that were met Commanders of known courage and address, there was no body who did not choose rather to die than flie; it is impossible as I have heard him say ever to see weightier blowes and more manfull attaques and resistances than were than to be seen, and if one party was ready to be Victor one moment the other releived it selfe and was ready to give the law the next. But in the end Alcidor having done all that man could doe, he had his horse killed under him and was himselfe [Page 134] overthrown upon the ground with him, in which posture being summoned to yeeld he had nothing to answer, but that the case in which he was constrained him so to doe. Being demanded his name, con­sidering that he had too many enemies in the Kings army he judged it prudent to conceal it and called himself Belom­pus.

At this Period Rolimon addressing him­self to his neice, These, cozen, said he, are the most remarkable adventures which I have any intimacy with of your new lover, and judge if I have not spo­ken well of him in favour of whose ri­vall I came to wait upon you. There are some things in the world, Sir, re­plied Dorame to him, of which one can­not hold one's peace, and the passages of Alcidor's life being of this kind, it is truth and justice which have compelled you to say what you have said. But I can­not yet be contented unless I hear what became of Florisa and whither Alcidor saw her not during the time of his activity abroad. You cannot know this so well of any body as of Alcidor himself, said Vindorix to her, but was he here the question is whither you have the power [Page 135] to obtaine the recitall of him. The question is rather, said Melian, whether he hath the power of refusing her any thing, and certainly when he shall know that we have in his absence entertained our selves with what we know of his concernements he will not refuse to entertain us himself with what we know not of them. How­ever since we have no more to relate of him, resumed Vindorix, let us by my consent take our way to bed, and stay no longer with my cozen, to whom dayes, nights, ages would be no more than mo­ments if one should all the while hold her with discourses concerning him. You speake, Cozen, returned Dorame to him, as if you was little skilled in obliging women, or else as if you had more sharpeness for me than if I had no rela­tion to you. But possibly I shall not be so unhappy as not to [...]inde an opportu­nity of revenging myself upon you. I make no question, said he again to her, but I shall have patience enough to bear whatsoever ill offices you shall have a mind to doe me, assuring myself that they will not be overgreat because I am Alcidor's freind. To this Dorame going about to repart, I see, said Rolimon, it is [Page 136] necessary that I should break off this con­test which will otherwise not at all regard how late the hours grow or know when to make an end, and therewith rose from his seat; which the rest doing after his example, they bad good night and went to bed.

The End of the second Book.

The Third BOOK.

THe next morning Dorame rising early enough to make her guests see that it was not laziness which had kept her so long in bed the day before, as soon as she was drest, she went to take her Uncle Rolimon in his chamber; but she found that he was to­gether with Vindorix and Melian gon to walk in the garden. She going thither to them, I hope, my neice, began Rolimon to her, the same phantasmes have not troubled you this night that did the former. I can never sleep with more tranquillity, answered she to him, than I have don to night, and if any thing came in my mind when I was awake more than ordinary it was only what you have recounted to me of Alcidor, and some feares I must confess [Page 138] least by the way hither he should be met by some freind of Cartagenes and called to an account for his death. Disturb not your mind with those suspicions, replyed Rolimon to her, for he hath in this province a more redoubted name than that any body should quickly be as rash as was Cartage­nes to commit the like indiscretion of as­saulting him. Have you then so ill an opi­nion of the courage of Cloriastes, said Do­rame to him smiling, as to beleive that he will not fight upon my account. I hold him for a man of heart, returned Roli­mon to her, but since he knowes not that Alcidor is your Lover, would you have me imagin that there will be a combat between two persons who have nothing of quarrell. Let us not amuze ourselves in prognosticating a mischeif of which there is no probability that it should quick­ly, if at all, fall out, but let us think of seeing Alcidor here at dinner; for my part I have strong hopes that we shall, for I am sure there is nothing of expedition which he will not use when he knowes that you desire to see him. The night had not shades so thick as to hinder him from tra­vailing, and besides when he undertakes any thing, he makes his way through all, nor [Page 139] woods, nor rocks nor pitchy darkenesses are unpassable to him. I have practised him enough to know him, and I speak no more than what I know to be true of him.

To this Dorame was going to say some­thing, when they saw enter the coverd walk where they sat Limonides with a look though not so overcast as when he brought the newes of the death of Cartagenes, yet very legibly inscribed with something of sadness. As soon as he came near them, have you some new unhappiness, preven­ted him Rolimon, to informe us of that you carry so melancholick a face? Have your pains been unprofitable in seeking Alci­dor? or have you met with him, and some ill hath befallen him? Almidon, Sir, re­plyed Limonides to him, hath followed Cartagenes; Alcidor hath made him pay at the point of the sword for the outrage that he did him in reporting what was false of him to Cartagenes. What [...]ighting is here, cryed D [...]rame sighing? This is not the way to let us quickly see Alcidor as we ex­pected. This will not all retard his co­ming, Madam, said Limonides to her, you will see him with you within an hour. You tell me what will be enough to my con­tentment Limonides, said she in answer to [Page 140] him, provided it proves true. There is nothing in the world more true, Madam, returned Limonides to her, than that he in­tends it. I shal make no more question of it, replied Dorame to him, but tell us what you know of his fighting with Almidon. Be­ing conducted, Madam, said Limonides, by Alcidors lacquey to the house of Meoni­mus (a freind of his) which is not far di­stant from that, which was my Masters while he lived, nor from that also of Al­midon, I there found him and delivered to him your Letter; which when he had read he told me there was no cure that I could have brought him like that for the greif with which he resented my Masters death. Saying little else but that little, enough to make me perceive that he had some business which he was in hast to dispatch with somebody, he jumpt on horseback and galloped away. To see whither he went I followed him with as much speed as I could without being perceived by him; but I was not able for some time to set eye upon him. At length I discerned him above a hundred paces from me with his sword in his hand against a man whom at that distance I know not. Riding as hard as I could to the place I had scarce discoverd [Page 141] his adversary to be Almidon, but I saw him run into the body by him and fall. When Alcidor saw me by them, confess before Limonides, Almidon, said he, the wrong that you have don me in reporting to his Master those things that were the occasion of his death. I can by no meanes excuse, returned Almidon to him, what you charge me with, and therefore if I may say that I forgive what is just, I forgive you the wound which you have given me, and which is apace letting out my soule. At these words Alcidor dropping some teares upon his misfortune as he had don upon my Ma­sters, stopt his wound with his handker­cheif, set him upon his horse and con­veighed him to the house from which we came. There we said, as Almidon desired us to say, and said himselfe that an enemy who had met him by chance had given him his hurt, and the Master of the house en­deavouring to inform himself of the name of that enemy he would never tell him, but desired him to content himself with this that he was a gallant man who had just oc­casion to set upon him, and that he died satisfied with him, not knowing how to com­plain of his action which he was free and valiant. He said but little more and died [Page 142] in the armes of Alcidor, who, his eyes being closed, commanded me back to you with assurance that as soon as he had ta­ken order to have him caried home, he would come away by the light of the moon to render himself with you.

Limonides having said thus and holding his tongue, It is indeed Alcidors happiness, said Dorame, that those whom he fights with and kills die his freinds, but I am, not­withstanding, that very much troubled at these occurrences. That, said Rolimon, is the part of honest persons that come to be so unfortunat, and these incounters in­deed, said Vindorix, though they are to be accounted good in regard that Alcidor hath had the better in them, yet they are not so in regard that two men, and one of them a man of true gallantry, have in a privat quarrell lost their lifes by his hand. But we shall have the less reason to be trou­bled provided Cloriastes increases not the number of those unfortunats: and we have reason to hope that he will not, because at present he does not think that he hath any occasion of falling out with Alcidor, and if he should think so hereafter, he must al­so think that to fight with him is not but to augment his trophes. For one to have [Page 143] two such combats one upon the heels of another said Melian, and in both to kill his adversaries without being at the cost of a drop of blood, does not usually happen; but it is to Alcidor that it hath happened and that hinders it from being a wonder. A great reason of his good success, said Do­rame, surely▪ is because he drew not his sword but upon a just cause; for who can deny but he had right on his side in both these duells, in the one as being assaulted, in the other as being outraged. No man, Cozen, said Rolimon to her, can with ju­stice condemn him for what he hath don and if any man should have either so much malice or so little judgment as to speak ill of him for it, he would finde enough ready to revenge it upon him. But let us with­draw hence to wait for him in the house, as shady as this place is the rayes of the sun peircing it, and beginning to set it on fire.

Removed into the house, they for some time held conversation upon severall wor­thy things which Cartagenes had done, and then Dorame turned it to Florisa and Alcidor, speaking very much in commendation of the former for regarding the merit rather than the birth of the latter, though reserving [Page 144] the quality of Prince, she knew he was issued of one of the best families of the kingdom and of him they were speaking when he came into the room where they were. At the sight of one another he and Do­rame were struck into a little stupor, which being quickly dissipated and salutations per­formed, you have since you left us, Sir, said she to him, been to us the cause and the object of more than ordinary apprehen­sions; my Uncle and Cozens who came hither two dayes since have been both wit­nesses and partners of them; but was there a necessity that you should abuse us by ma­king shadow to us of going to agree some freinds and engaging yourself in mortall quarrells? I hope, Madam, interrupted her Alcidor, Limonides hath not done me the ill office to conceal what past between his Master and me? He hath given us a full account of it, Sir, said Rolimon to him, but my neice taking a particular interest in your preservation, therefore sets thus upon you, that she may persuade you not to be another time so ready to satisfie the re­sentments of men void of reason. What could I do less, replied Alcidor, than use my sword against a man who forced me so to defend me honor and my life. I am [Page 145] certainely no quarreller, much less am I of a humor to fall foul upon those whom I do not beleeve to have a design of offen­ding me, but that it should be said that out of cowardise I disengaged myself from a provocation, or that any body should set upon me without my giving them to see, as far as I am able, that I am not insensible, I can by no meanes bring myself to endure. You gave sufficient demonstration of this to Lisimax, said Dorame to him, and thereby acquired a far more triumphing reputa­tion than that any body should be easily di­sposed to pass sentence upon you as pusilla­nimous. I see you know, Madam, retur­ned Alcidor to her, what in respect of its in considerableness I had reason to think lay private from you; but that is too small a thing to procure me credit with any body, much less can it bring me into esteem with you to whom those things are common which to others are rare. Not to dissemble what we have done, Sir, said Rolimon to him, Vindorix and I to divert my neice have imparted to her the knowledge which we have of your life, which reaches, you know, to the time that you was taken prisoner, ex­cepting what became of Florisa and what in­tercourse you maintained with her, after her [Page 146] Uncle removed her from Paquin. I am sor­ry, replied Alcidor, that she hath had no bet­ter a diversion, the occurrences of War usually making horror rather than harmony to those of her sexe and temper. Notwith­standing my weaker sexe, reparted Darame, I am not of so weake a temper, as to be frighted with the bruite of things; on the contrary they have been very melodious aires to me, both those of your martiall deeds and those of your amorous intelligences whith the princess Florisa. In the remainder of which latter I beseech you to instruct me, after you have recounted to us, that which I also begge of you, how things went be­tween you and Almidon. But yet before you doe this I will shew you what Cartage­nes wrot to me dying. With those words she took out of her pocket and presented to him the letter of that defunct, which he ha­ving read. How few such men, said he, are there to be found in the world, and how much regret have I that such a man should fall by my sword, though withall by his own fault. But let us leave him in peace Madam, continued he, and suffer me to tell you that you use me with too much ce­remony to intreat of me what it is your part to command. Had you as much fa­vor [Page 147] for me as I have honor and obedience for you, you would only say, Alcidor, it is my will you should do thus and thus; this freeness would make me do what you desire with greater cheerfullness. But you beleive you should render me too happy should you treat me so. You have no rea­son surely to complain, answered she to him, if I pay you the respect which I know to be due to you: loose no more time there­fore in producing to us these punctilio's of your spirit, we being better assured of its excellency than to need such testimonies of it, but relate to us the adventure, which you have had with Almidon. Not to tell you again what you have been told allready, Madam, said Alcidor to her, be pleased to take this breviate of the rest.

After I was informed by Cartagenes and Limonides, how Almidon had calumniated me to the former, and by so doing been the author of his misfortune (over which I could not choose but weep) I had no lon­ger any thing besides my love of your self so busy in my minde as revenge; but I was a while unresolved of what means I should serve myself in prosecution of it; some­times I thought of acting one way, some­times another: I was indeed most inclined [Page 148] to go find him myself in his house, and draw him into the feild, there to demand an account of him for what he had done; but I was withall miserably agitated with fears of incurring your displeasure by so doing, and of acquiring the tittle of a gla­diator more than of your servant. I had agreed those upon whose occasion I went hence with the success that I desired, and there was nothing but my love that stood in the way of my anger. But when I conside­red that you was of a more generous hu­mor than to take it ill that I should seek satisfaction for the wrong that was done to me and for the mischeife that was done to Cartagenes, I wavered no longer but leaving that dying man in the armes and to the care of Limonides, I betook myself to the house of Meonimus from which that of Almidon was not far distant. Where having staid some hours to repose my selfe and write that letter to you which you was pleased most obligingly to answer, I got again on horsebacke, and leaving behinde me my freind's house was quickly at that of my enemie. I found him at home, was recea­ved by him better than I desired, and soon understood from him that he knew nothing of the death of Cartagenes (for I reckoned [Page 149] him to be by that time no more among the living) and that he beleived I knew nothing of the reports which he had made to him concerning me. Hiding therefore my re­sentments from him, after I had staid with him neer an houre, and refused the invita­tions of eating which he very civilly prest me with, I acted so that I engaged him to ride out with me. When we were come far enough from his house, in the midst of a wood, whither I served myself of the oc­casion of a great roade to bring us, taking him by the hand and obliging him to make a halt as I did, Almidon, said I to him, I know not where to find a place more pro­per to require an account of the injury that you have done me than this. Amaz'd at which words without giving me leasure to proceed, what is it, Alcidor, said he, which moves you thus to surprize me? I never had a minde said I to him again, to surprize any man unhandsomely; but know­ing that you have not freeness enough to sa­tisfie willingly those whom you have wrong­ed, I have chose to draw you clan [...]ularly hither that so you might not be able to find any way of escaping or giving yourself a dispensation from fighting. But tell me then, returned he to me, what the injury is which [Page 150] you accuse me of having done you, and for which you thus set upon me. Do you not remember, replied I to him, or can you deny that you not long since spoke of me to Cartagenes otherwise than was true and ho­nest? who, answered he, hath told you that I did? Cartagenes himself, reparted I. He hath indeed allwayes told me, returned he, that he would ingage me in a quarrell with somebody, and I have now too much experi­ence of it to question that he was in earnest. But I will maintain to him that he lyes and that I never spoke of you but as I ought. At those words provokt with his baseness in de­nying what I was sure he was guilty of, and laying the blame upon one of whose inno­cence I had sufficient proofe, I took my sword in my hand against him; but he made no offer of putting himself in a posture of defence. Seeing which, are you so great a coward, cried I to him, as not only to un­say what you have broached, but also to re­fuse fighting with one who defies you to it and will kill you if you do not resist him? But these reproaches stirred him not and I was unwilling to strike a man who would not defend himself. To try therefore if I could bege [...] a courage in him, and withall the better to convict him, I repeated to him [Page 151] the words which he had said to Cartagenes. Struck with which and his owne conscience together he sat on his horse like a statue as if he had had nothing of sense or motion left him. At length recovering spirit, Carta­genes, said he, hath been most disingenu­ously unjust to fixe upon me what I never thought of, and I shall act powerfully enough against him to let you quickly see his artifice and baseness, and that I am no such base or cowardly person as you accuse me to bee. Cartagenes no longer lives, cried I to him, this sword which I hold in my hand to punish you hath forced him to make a voyage into another world for having too lightly given credit to your discourses. That unhappy Cavaleir was as valiant to attacque me as you are heartless to defend yourself; but the equity of my cause surmounted the injustice of his, and you, Impostor shall, if I can make you, run the same adventure, expiating your crime with your blood. Take your sword therefore in your hand or I will run you through. But these words warned him no more than the former, and could he have fled I dare confidently say he would not have staied long in the place. In sine, when after I had with a great deal of pati­ence waited upon him he saw I would wait [Page 152] no longer but was resolved to use him e­nough to his ignominy unless he would stand upon his guard, he told me that his sword was not equall to mine, as indeed it was not, being as bad a one as I have commonly seen, and that if I would stay till the next morning he would render himself where I should appoint to give me the satisfaction that I desired. As commonly they who have an ill paymaster their debtor are content to be paid with such money as they can receive, I consented to his procrastination and we concluded upon a place and hour where and when to meet the following day. Which being come, about halfe an houre before Li­monides came to me, I saw enter the house of Meonimus one whom though disguised I knew to be Almidons lacquey. The fashion in which I saw him, and the manner in which he inquired for Meonimus, whom I had sent from home in the morning upon other busi­ness, that so I might have leasure to per­form that which I had in hand with Almi­don, made me suspect that his Master was brewing something of treachery. To ascer­tain myself of the truth of it, and know what this disguise meant, I took the lacquey by the collar, and shewing my self most vio­lently angry threatned him to make him [Page 153] hang if he would not quickly tell me why he was metamorphost, and for what reason he came into the house covertly and like a theife. Presently the poor boy who had his senses frozen with feare confest to me that his Master had given him a summe of money to advertise Meonimus secretly of the Duel which he was to perform with me, and to feigne that it was his owne proper motion to give him the advertisement. In­quiring then of the lacquey where his Master was, and hearing that he was gone to the place assigned for our meeting I thought of nothing any more but to make haste to him. But Limonides arrived at the instant with your most wellcome letter, and I staid to read it twice over and to speak a few words to him that brought it. Which done to come upon Almido [...] unawares, I galloped to him by a private way. Perceiving him wholly astonisht to see me instead of Meoni­mus whom he expected, I gave him leasure to recollect himself, and then I with much difficulty made him draw his sword; But he used it so ill that I with little difficulty gave him a wound which let out the best part of his blood upon the place. The rest Limo­nides I suppose hath acquainted you with, I shall therefore only add that I have not [Page 145] without a very great displeasure to me been compelled in this fashion to make good my honor against a gallant man and a coward­ly. He having said so, the action of the former of them, said Dorame, does indeed afford a subject of praise, that of the latter carries infamy in its remembrance. No­thing is more certain, adjoined Vindorix, than that a mans good or bad reputation de­pends for the most part upon his actions. Some more words they had upon this occa­sion and Alcidor fell into particularities with Dorame; in which the other company being about to leave them, the table presently shewed it self coverd and called them all to take their seates.

As soon as they had dined Dorame carry­ing them into a private room requested Al­cidor to make the reci [...]ll that he had promi­sed of the remainder of his loves, and he obeyed her in a discourse to this effect.

Vindorix knows the trouble which the absence of Florisa gave me, to which was ad­ded that which I had to see him fall sick and constrained to leave me. The imprison­ment also of [...]l [...]cidas, which I knew he suf­ferd for favouring of me, I had such a sense of that had I known where Lucimon had shut him up I should either have drawn him [Page 155] thence or lost myself in undertaking it. I had I am sure too much cause to complain of that prince to serve him in his army. I there­fore put my self in that of Lisantus, and there I past some time without learning any news of the princess though I had continually spies about Lucimon to discover in what place of the earth he kept her. By this my cares of Love appearing without hopes of prosperi­ty, and the War every moment furnishing me with new means of laying both them and the melancholy which they caused to me asleep, I began after some months to think no otherwise of the Princess than as of one who was wholly lost to me. Among these thoughts an expedition carrying us towards the province of Sancy, the second day after our arrivall in those quarters I saw come into my chamber one, whom though disgui­sed, I presently knew to be Alexis page to Florisa, and who gave me a letter the con­tents whereof I still remember were these.

Florisa to Alcidor.

AT last in despight of Lucimon and his ty­ranny I have the means to informe you of the torments that I undergo. I am more restrai­ned than slaves and more rigorously used than [Page 156] Crimi [...]alls. Excepting this Page and Leonora I have no body about me whose fidelity is not cor­rupted. Judge then if I am not to complain and if my afflictions ought not to touch you. But I shall be in a great measure happy amidst my unhappinesses if I can but be assured that you still love me. I no sooner knew of the approach of Lisantus towards this Towne of Sanchio but I imagined that you was with him and have there­fore sent Alexis to you to let you know that my greatest fear is that of not seeing you. Send me word how you do and whither the courage of Alcidor can suffer that Florisa should live all­ways miserable.

Seriously affected with these lines when I considerd that a page had had the faithfull­ness, wit and courage to deceive the Prin­cess's guards, I could not but reckon my­self obliged to practise all possible means of seeing her. Sending therefore Alexis before to advertise her that I would be suddenly at her feet, but that she and Leonora must dis­semble their knowledge of me, with a se­lect Troop whom I durst trust and whom, in that confidence whichI had in them, I instru­cted to call me by another name, I took the way withall she speed that I could after him. Coming to the place about, twilight I askt to [Page 157] speak with Doliban the Captaine that guar­ded the princess; who presently appearing I told him that Lisantus having received ad­vise of a design that was on foot of taking away the Princess, had sent me to impede the execution of it. Taking what I told him for certain, he received me with a great deal of freeness, shewed me what souldiers he had and what order he observed for pre­serving his fair charge and desired me to do what I judged in the present occasion fitting. Accordingly to confirm him in his beleife of what I had affirmed, I appointed sentinells to be set at all the avenues of the place, and concerned my self to see that and severall other things done with as much zeal as if I had really been affraid of the rape that I pretended, and with as much di­ligence as if I expected it would have been presently attempted. All this while I disco­verd nothing to him of the desire that I had to see the Princess, but as soon as we had settled things for her safety, he of his own accord offerd me to conduct me to her, I took the offer and went along with him like one sufficiently disinterested, and she recei­ved me as coldly. When Doliban indeed with longer eulogies of me than either she or I at that time cared for, told her what rank I [Page 158] held with Lisantus and upon what errand I was come from him, she payd me those respects which in common manners were due, but yet she in every thing acted her part so sagely that one would have firmely beleived she had not had the least acquain­tance with me. Leonora also gave authori­ty to the dissimulation by the curiosity which she shewed in inquiring after my name and severall other things about me. But Doliban being after a while called away, we quickly changed the fashion of your converse. We recounted, she to me the severities which her Uncle Lucimon had exercised upon her since he had removed her from Paquin, I to her the pains that I had taken to learn her a­bode, both I to her and she to me how bit­ter our forcible separation had been to us, and how sweet our present stoln inter­view was; we deliberated of the means of keeping Doliban blind and of seeing one another for the future; we discourst of all that we could think of past, present and to come that concerned either our good or our ill, we determined that for prevention of discovery and to keep of suspicion it was necessary that as I had come after the sun was gone down so I should be gone before it was gotten up: In breife the most of the [Page 159] leasure that we had we spent in reciproca­ting testimonies of affection to one another the most emphaticall that her vertue and my respectfullness could allow us. But this kept us not from being so wary that when Doli­ban returned to me, he found me exami­ning whither all things were in good order at the inlets. In which work he bearing me company, I took occasion to remonstrate to him that it was necessary the plot should be kept secret from every body and particularly from Lucimon for fear it should alarum him so as to disturb him in the great affairs which he had upon his hands. It is suf­ficient, added I, that the enemie's design is known to Lisantus, your self and me, our forces and cares being of validity enough to ruine it; only let it be your business to watch solicitously for the security and ad­vantage of your charge, and it shall be mine to give as I am obliged a very fair character of you to him that sent me. To this Doliban shaped a reply full of honesty and civility, and carried me backe to the Princess; who signifying some apprehensions of the danger that she was in we assured her that provi­ded they in the Town had, as there was no reason to question but they had, resolution and fidelity answerable to their duty, she was [Page 160] as safe where she was as she could be any where else of the Kingdome. I had by this time not above halfe an houre to stay, and Doliban as opportunely as if on purpose re­ceding, we improoved it as we were taught by our Master Love. He reentring when we were drawing to a conclusion my tongue insensibly slided to commend her to his tui­tion and to take my leave of them both. Re­turned to the Campe I found that Lisantus had sent all about in search of me; presen­ting my self therefore to him though he with a strict curiosity examined where I had been, I deceived him as well as I had done Doli­ban, disguising things so to him that he had not the least suspicion of the truth.

By such means during a month that we staied in the province of Sancy I seaven or eight times stole the sight and company of Florisa; after which the motions of the War carrying us else whither we bad one another adieu with tears on her part which she told me sprang from strong apprehensi­ons that she should never see me again, and with protestations on my part that how re­mote soever the Countrey was whither I went I would not with the blessing of Hea­ven be long before I visited her. But Polia­nis never suffering us to rest, but continually [Page 161] shewing himself either at our heels or Lu­cimon's, so that all the diligence that we could use was too little to protect ourselves against him, I was much longer than I ex­pected before I could make good my word. He indeed by the victories which he obtai­ned over us weakened us so much that I had more reason to consider how to prevent the ruine of myself and my party than how to carry on my loves with Florisa. Not to re­hearse any of the traverses of the War (for with them I suppose you are allready ac­quainted) every moment that I would have gone to find the Princess, new imployments were laid in my way by Lisantus whom I ac­counted my self bound in honour to observe. But I was nothwithstanding all obstructions contriving at length how to make an escape for a few dayes from the Campe, when Ale­xis presented himself again to me together with this letter.

Florisa to Alcidor.

HOw respectfully soever Doliban treates me I am continually rackt with an impa­tient longing either to see you or heare from you. I should indeed be in hazard of dying with ma­lancholy, was it not for Leonora who makes [Page 162] it her worke to comfort me, and particularly endeavours to perswade me that the impor­tant affaires in which you are ingaged allow you not the time that you desire to satisfie my wil [...]. Howsoever it is that you are imploied, for love of me preserve your life, [...]remem­bring that you ought to act the Captain and not the common Souldier, and either come to me or write the cause which hinders you from co­ming.

Incited by this language and my own in­clinations I was never at rest till I had pro­cured liberty of [...] to be a few dayes absent, nor till I was gotten with Alexis to her who had sent him to me. She declared herselfe as glad to see me as at other times, yet withall a little dissatisfied with me be­cause I had staid so long away from her. But with the remonstrances which I made to her I so perfectly composed her spirit and set all so well in tune that our converse all the while I staid after consisted of no other notes but what were purely harmonious, and that when I told her the houres called me away she tooke it not at all ill, but freely dismist me. We thus from time to time saw one another by the politickes which we used keeping Doliban from perceiving and Luci­mon from learning any thing of our intelli­gence, [Page 163] and consequently having the former allwayes disposed to please us.

But I could not content my self with this, unless I saw Placidas at liberty, whom I should have been very ungratefull should I not have remembred of my self, and whom the Princess and Leonora putting me also in mind of informed me of the place where he was kept prisoner. In recompense there­fore of the good services which he had done his Princess and the good offices which he done me, I procured his prison to be forced and his imprisonment to be put an end to, an exploit of which I should have been quickly suspected the authour by Lucimon, had I not imploied in it such in whom I knew I might trust, given them order to name themselves of the roiall party, and managed the whole business with a suitable disguise. The newes of it flying as fast to Lucimon as Placidas did to me, he was vext at it to a tempestous rage, and con­ceived such feares of seeing as much befall his neice that he immediately removed her from the place where she was. Whither he removed her I was not able by all the means that I could use to descover; but at length Alexis came to me with word from her that she was at Suchieu and that Doliban [Page 164] was no more with her but another Cap­tain who allowed her not so much li­berty as he had done. Not being allwayes able to find a stratageme favourable to my desire of visiting her, I sent this letter by him to her.

Alcidor to Florisa.

YOur sufferings have not a sharper in­fluence upon yourself than upon me. But a great and incomparable Princess as you are knowes how to overcome her afflictions with her constancy. Nor may you beleive that Alci­dor will be deprived of the glory of seeing you any longer than is necessary for procuring an ex­pedient of effecting it; and my love is more powerfull than not ere long to procure one in despight of the new tyrant that watches you.

Two dayes after I had sent away Alexis, Lisantus having advertisement that the inha­bitants of Suchieu were fallen into mutinies, to remedy the discorder thought fit that I should make a voiage thither. Having by which means in a short time obtained an opportunity which I might have a long time been seeking by art, I was quickly on horse­backe, and quickly at my journie's end. All [Page 165] tumults ceasing at my arrivall. After I had resettled things in their former constitutions, I enquired of the officers of the Town what condition the Princess was in and what or­der was observed in guarding her, and they not only informed me in what I askt, but they also conducted me to her and left me with her; that which Anaximenes the Cap­tain that had the Custody of her, though it was wholly against the command which Lucimon had given him, was so far from opposing, that busying himself about some­thing of his charge which required his pre­sent care, he gave us sufficient leasure of en­tertaining one another. We had indeed not only that first day, but also during foure dayes that I staid at Suchieu as much liberty with one another as before that Lucimon was jea­lous of it, and I made as frequent and as free vissits to her as I desired, Anaximenes being very happily to our advantage so passionate of Leonora that she made him act what part she would.

After this rate of correspondencies persi­sted we to live till Dorilas, escaping out of prison into his Uncle Lucimon's army and there hearing from that grand enemy of our loves all that he knew of them, came him­self to Suchieu and there charged it upon his [Page 166] Sister with very sharpe reproaches. Ad­vertisement hereof she sent me by Alexis; whereupon, though she assured me withall that not brother, not Uncle, not all who­soever should either by fair or foul means be ever able to divorce her heart from me, I nevertheless with close and se­rious thoughts represented to my self that her quality, beauty, wisedom, vertue ren­dring her an equall match to the possessor of a throne, for me to aspire to the posses­sion of her was to go about to debase her from her just height, to be guilty of an ar­rogance of which the fruite would be com­mon envy if it succeeded, if it succeded not publique derision; and to pull upon me from her relations a loade of malice under which I must necessarily fall. From these and such like premises I drew a conclusion to beware for the future how I nourisht an affection of which nothing could in all likelihood come but unhappiness. But write this conclusion to her in relation to whom I made it I durst not; I only sent her word by Alexis that since her brother disliked that pious fire with which I offered my heart in sacrifice to her, I would for some time hide it under the ashes that so I might not kindle in him a de­sign of destroying me, but yet, during that [Page 167] reserve, would not fail of seeing her if it was possible, or at least of writing to her. Which message in what sense she construed, I know not, but this I know that from that time I nor saw her nor heard from her till after I was taken prisoner.

This turne of my fortune, having if I may speak it without vanity by an uninterrupted [...]rosperity of my armes climbed to a su [...]ici­ent eminency of reputation, I had at first no other sense of, than as of a fall, the disgrace and dammage of which was very hardly if at all to be repaired; but it afterwards pro­ved of very profitable consequence to me. Polianis tooke notice and care of me as of some body considerable, he appointed me no other jayle but his court, no other jaylor but my parole, he gave me a thousand rich experiences of his goodness, he earnestly prest me to ingage in his service, and I should without doubt have done myself the good office of satisfying him, had he been of the same religion with me. That he was not was the argument that I used to him for my dispensation, and he took it not ill; only when by far better fortune than merit I was demanded to be released in exchange for three, the meanest of whom was of much more value than Alcidor, he obliged me to [Page 168] promise him that I would change my side when he changed his faith.

While I lay prisoner at the Court I was told by severall of credit that Florisa was erelong to be married to Eridan, prince of the royall Blood. Whereupon, what I had before carried by rote, I confirmed by decree that I would consider her no more as my most adorable mistress but only as my illu­strious freind. But though I was fully bent to retire from her bonds, I notwithstanding went to waite upon her as soon as I was at liberty, and in our converse I used all the skill that I was Master of to veile my inten­tions from her. But we had not been long together before she told me that she after my long absence observed a constraint and alteration in me which was very strange to her. I endeavouring to make her loose that opinion, and particularly excusing my ab­sence by my imprisonment and upon that occasion speaking honourably, and as I was in gratitude bound, of Polianis, she rejoined that she was affraid the favours and vertues of that victorious prince had overcome me so as to make me at once abandon the inte­rests of her family and grow cold in the affe­ction which I had vowed to her. To this I was shaping an answer with which I hoped [Page 169] to satisfie her, but was prevented by the co­ming of Dorilas, which gave me no more leasure than to slip away without so much as bidding her Adieu, and I had no more op­portunity of seeing her before that her su­spicious brother carried her away to a place where she was more straightly guarded than ever.

At length the King after he had seriously deliberated of the concernements of religion making a turne which pleased some, displea­sed others, brought over to him the most remarkeable Lords of [...]he Union, and ren­ded Lucimon allmost desperate, with a most propitious condescension challanged me of the promise which I made him when I left his prison, and I readyly followed whither the loadstone of his authority and goodness drew me, not without the honour of having the incomparable Lisantus to beare me com­pany. Him he presently made vice Roy of a province of China, to me he gave twenty thousand Takes in present to repair the ex­pences that I had been at in maintaining the War against him, and foure thousand Takes in pension, causing me withall to be saluted by Feonice the ruling object of his affections and by her Sister Astasia a principall beauty of his court.

[Page 170] These things were not done with so little noise but that they reached the eares of Flo­risa, and as Alexis brought me word she fell sicke with the hot alarum which she took at them. By him therefore I wrot back to her that she ought not to take it ill that I had quitted a party whom I at length had found to be most unjustly and disloyally armed against their Soveraigne, or that the danger which I saw and she knew I was every moment in by the ill will of her rela­tions had made me think a little of acting as my preservation demanded of me, and that as long as I lived she should have cause to beleeve that I had for her a just veneration, a thankfull memory, and a faithfull service.

It followed by some intervalls, and I have done when I have told you it, that Li­santus and I were set on work by the King to help to destroy that monster (for so we now reckoned the Union) which we had so long assisted, and that we very prosperously at­cheived our task, that Dorilas seeing no body obstinate for the league but his Uncle Lucimon, and having no mind to ruine him­self with him askt the King's pardon and re­ceived it, that Polianis justly incenst against Atalantus for having incited and maintained his subjects against him with designe of sei­zing [Page 171] the monarchy of China declared War against him and obtained against him three signal victories, that the enemies forces being vanquisht by Adrastus in the province of Peu­quiam, others of the same party entered in­to that of Xiancy and took [...]hianchieu killing the illustrious Lisantus that defended it, that the famous Astragant yeelded himself toge­ther with severall Townes to his Majesty, that Lucimon seeing all his retreates lost, all his hopes blasted, and Polianis crowned King, with a penitent humility saught his grace and submitted to his Scepter, that by this meanes a generall peace was restored to China, and in fine that the amorous intercourse between me and Florisa, which had been all this while dying but had made severall efforts to reco­ver it self, they proving no more than blazes before the going out of the Candle, was by the end of the War wholly extinct.

Alcidor having brought his narration to a period, and the Company having paid him their thanks, I have been informed, said Dorame to him, that your love did not die when it left Florisa, but only like a Pythago­rick soul past from one to another, from Flo­risa to Astasia, I shall therefore account myself very much in your debt if you will relate to us what were the transactions of it with that [Page 172] beautifull wife of Certafilan. There are many reasons, Madam, returned Alcidor, which forbid me doing what you desire. But the most remarkable of the truths which you would know, one of my freinds, designing so to oblige me, hath faithfully enough penned down. This manuscript if you think it worth your time to examine, I shall willingly put into your hands. There­with he pulled out of his pocket and presen­ted to her a little book of which the cover was Crimson velvet embroidered with Gold and adorned with Pearls and Cyphers. Ha­ving took it, vewed its outside, opened it, found the pourtraitures of Alcidor and Asta­sia on the first and second pages, and lookt awhile upon them, she gave it to Melian in­treating him to read it to them, and he read it in these words.

The History of the Loves of Alcidor and Astasia.

ALcidor being returned to Paquin from Canton where he had subdued the re­maines of the confederacy, now that the fires of the civill War were wellnigh all quenched, had a fire kindled in his breast [Page 173] by the beauties of Astasia which was of too much force easily to be put out: And yet he had at first considering her known integrity to her husband no in couragement to hope that it would succeed to his satisfaction. But on a sudden as if some fatality had laboured to cleere his way, Certafilan with his nice and distemperd palate began to distast the visits which the more gallant Courtiers made to his Lady. This folly prevailing with more and more unruliness in his spirit he at length never saw any body near her but he belee­ved it was to corrupt her castity; Nor though to obey and please him (seeing what disease he laboured under) she shun­ned all the Company which she thought he might suspect, grew he ever the more so­ber, but so interpreted all her actions to his fansie that there was not the least and most spotless of them with which he found not fault. Wholly governed with which fren­zy he retrenched the usage of those respects which he had been wont to pay her and most unworthily loaded her with abuses which it was impossible for her long to bear. She notwithstanding practised all the sweet meanes that her discretion was able to sug­gest to her to put him in a better mind; but instead of being thereby brought back to [Page 174] reason he was exasperated higher and grew more and more insupportable. Her teares which one would have thought able to melt cruelty it self rather increast than allaied his rage and her just complaints served to no better effect than to make him vomit a thou­sand contumelies against her honor. Nor were her own indeavors to appease him fruitless only but the Kings also, who having knowledge of his madness used what reme­dies he judged requisite for his cure, but without effecting it. During this ferall per­secution of Astasia, Alcidor went every day to see her without her persecutor being able to hinder it, it being in the lodgings of Feo­nice and in the presence of Polianis that he visited her; and as often as he saw her he made her see that he was as deeply con­cerned in her sufferings as she was herself. She again every day drunke in such a sense both of his sympathy and accomplishments as with the assistance of Certafilan's outrages rendred this latter less and less and that for­mer more and more agreeable to her. He proceded to manage time and his actions so advantageously to his purpose that she no longer regarded him but as one regards those whom one sincerely likes. She was not con­tented but when he was with her, nor dis­contented [Page 175] but when he was from her. She felt emotions and attempts which she had never felt before; by which discerning that Love was surprizing her heart she imploied all her strength to defend it, but he not­withstanding all made himself Master of it. Perceiving herself conquered, since thou findest it in vaine, said she to her selfe, to oppose the will of Love, of whom all the world holds in fee, rebell no more Astasia. Who can with common charity blame thee, because thou submittest to a puissance which disposes of all as it lists, and because thy affections lacquey no longer after a Master who hath most barbarously handled them, but run to one whose qualities are all irre­sistably magneticke, and who, if any body, is most likely to protect and releeve thee? who indeed if not Alcidor is able to bring Certafilan into order. But, alas, by what meanes should he do it? for him to speak to him in my defence what is it but to aug­ment his jealousy? And though it may be he dares not assault him, may he not still re­venge himself upon me, a woman who have nothing but sighs and teares for my armes against him? But imagine, Astasia, that Al­cidor is able to supercede his oppression of me, who hath told thee that he will be at [Page 176] the paines to go about it? The respects in­deed which he renders thee seem to be such as would assure thee of it, but consider he renders the like to all Ladies, and had he a particular kindness for thee he would not surely have been untill this houre to let thee know it, every thing having favoured such a design. No, no it is impossible that a great fire should lye so long under its cin­ders without appearing more or less; It would therefore be a great vanity in thee to perswade thyself there is any such in his breast for the. The Princess Florisa indeed hath too much empire in her attractions to suffer him to subject himself to any other.

While Astasia was discoursing thus with herselfe about Alcidor, he was at the same time resolving with himselft to declare to her his passion, and considering that he had not liberty to do it by word of mouth by reason that Certafilan had eyes and eares every where to watch her, he concluded to make a letter his proxie. Accordingly he without any farther demurre drew his thoughts on paper, sealed it up and made himself his messenger to carry it to her. He found her in her Sister Feonice's Chamber, she being newly come in to it, out of her closet where she had been some while shut [Page 177] up bemoaning her self, but Certafilan follo­wed him in at the heels, and when they could have wisht him in the remotest part of the world debarred them by his Company from having any particular society. He kept his eyes such strict sentinells upon them both that they could hardly steal a few glances one of another, much less could they enter­tain one another as they desired. But af­ter a while as if on purpose to dress a party against him, Feonice set upon him with so hot a charge for his untowardness to her Sister, that he could intend nothing but how to defend himself against her. Observing which opportunity Alcidor offerd his letter to the hand of Astasia, and she civilly re­ceiving it slipt it into her pocket. Feonice still held Certafilan to task with her remon­strances of his fault, and she was so earnest in them and thought them so equitable that, though Astasia made frequent signes to her to desist, she would not be taken off till the Cri­minall having spent all the weak excuses which he could forge, said nothing more but what made her hope he intended to be better for the future, though as it afterwards ap­peared he at the same time resolved to be worse, with a very skillfull dissimulation laying a constraint upon his humor to hide [Page 178] his design. Hardly had Feonice sat down from her action but Polianis came into the Cham­ber; whereupon Certafilan fearing a severe reprehension from him also made hast away, nor was he stopt by the King who had at that time other thoughts in his mind. Certafilan gone, his Lady pretending herself not well withdrew into her Chamber; Alcidor offerd to lead her, but she civilly refused it, and he prest it not guessing she went to read what he had given her. And he guest right; for having walkt three or four turnes in her Chamber among her women she went into her Closet, and having shut herself in opened the letter and read in it these con­tents.

Alcidor to Astasia.

I Have sighed so long for what you suffer and with what I suffer my self that I can no lon­ger conceale it from you. I have had a far deeper sense of your troubles than if I had endu­red them myself. And it is not meerly a com­passionate temper that hath bred this sense in me but a passionate Love. I contracted this Love at the first sight of you, it hath ever since in­creast by degrees, and it is now grown of too large a dimension and violence to bee kept hid. [Page 179] Punish not my temerity since your own beauty is the parent of it, but have some pitty for me, who have so much for you that I shall with triumph sacrifice my life to draw you from the tyranny under which you groan.

Having read this letter many times over and every time with more satisfaction than other, her husbands humor began to be all­together indifferent to her, and for Alcidor she reckoned she could do no less than draw a kinde answer to him and she drew this.

Astasia to Alcidor.

MY condition is such as permitts me not to slight either the sympathy that you pre­tend with me, or the succour that you offer me; the one may blunt the edge of my pressures, the other may put an end to them; I therefore with thankes accept of both. But I do not withall desire that you should hazard your life in relee­ving me: preserve it rather as carefully as you can, that so I may reap that benefit by it that I stand in need of, and beleive, that reckoning myself in a good part happy by the friendship that you assure me of, I shall esteem myself per­fectly so when I shall have it in my power to evi­dence [Page 180] to you that I am from my heart your ser­vant.

Having wrapt up these lines, notwithstan­ding those that watch't her actions she ran with them to her Sisters Chamber, where she knew the King and Alcidor still were: The King when she reentred was in a parti­cular conversation with that absolute Mi­stress of his heart, and he went on in it. Al­cidor was at some distance veiwing pictures in which art had so dextrously imitated na­ture that things dead seemed alive and sen­sible: but he quickly left them when he saw her appear who had reall life and sense ac­c [...]mplisht above the imitation of art, with wit, beauty and goodness, and taking the opportunity went and confirmed to her by words of his Letter. She gave him for an­swer what she had written, which having read ina corner where the King and Feonice could not see him he with a thred of grate­full, respectfull and affectionate language tied her heart to him in a most fast knot. She owning as much to him, they procee­ded to contract their affections one to the other with most solemne vowes of reality and const [...]ncy; and in this strain they were when the King called Astasia to him and askt her [Page 181] if she would go along with Feonice to the waters. To this your Majestyes desires, returned she, and my Sisters Company are of much more value to me than that I should be backward either to obey the one or follow the other, provided that he to whose hu­mor I am subject will grant me a licence. Be­leive me, Astasia, replied the King, if that untoward man shall hereafter go about any thing against my will I shall limit him so that he shall not be able to act but by the rule of my pleasure. There cannot indeed be found Sir, said she againe to him, an expedient more proper to still his tyranny than to op­pose to it an august power as is that of your Majesty. Certafilan surely, inserted Alci­dor, will not be so rash as to resist his Prince, who he knows reigns by justice and cle­mency together, and when he shall find that injuring his Ladies vertue he enterprizes upon his soveraigne's authority that under­takes her protection I do not doubt but he will out of a sense of his equity and for fear of his anger make his suspicions die. We will wait to see what he will do now, said Polianis, and if he does well, I shall as he deserves cherish him, if ill, punish him. In the mean while, Astasia, prepare for the journey with your Sister, I shall be very [Page 182] much pleased that you accompany her, and I cannot believe that your husband can be troubled at it, when he shall know that I am so pleased. Those that are ill temperd as he, Sir, said Feonice, take occasion as well to speak against the wills of Kings, which are regulated by sober and discerning reason, as of common people who act not but according to the dictates of brutish ap­petite, without being able to distinguish what is good from what is bad. But I perswade myself, said Alcidor, that Certafilan will hereafter governe his motions with so much prudence that his Majesty will not be put to any trouble to reforme them.

They thus discoursing for a while toge­ther, then the King resuming a particular conference with Feonice, and by favour of that occasion Alcidor doing the like with her Sister, Certafilan in the mean time, mise­rably rackt himself, feares that the Letter was resolving his wife to practises against him, and to augment his inquietudes he ap­prehended that if he went presently to inter­rupt them the King would (not without be­ing offended) discover the disease with which his spirit laboured, if he waited till the King was gone that Alcidor would in the intervall bring his wife to his will. Wan­dring [Page 183] about in this perplexity he met two Magistrates, freinds of his, who according to the order that they had received were go­ing to wait upon the King at Feonice's Lod­gings: Them he went a long with thither, without shewing any thing of his trouble, and before the King and his Company ap­peared, in a gainess of temper which gave them thoughts of him very different from what they had lately had; Polianis desiring of him that his wife might the day following beare her Sister Company to the Waters he exprest a free and cheerefull consent; he discourst with Alcidor as if he had had no other fansy of him but as of his dearest freind; he shewed to Astasia as kind regards as when they were first married. And these he continued to her not only while the King was present (who after he had beene a little in private with Feonice bad her and her Si­ster fare well. Alcidor doing the like and attending upon him) but also till she went away, which she did the next morning, ha­ving a splendid equipage provided by him for her journey.

About sixe dayes after the two Sisters were come to the Waters, Astasia fell strangely sad without being able to give any reason why she was so. While she was dominee­red [Page 184] by which humor, and Feonice was en­deavouring to asswage it, word was brought her that a lacquey desired to speak with her. She commanding him to be brought to her with hopes to find him Alcidor's, he ap­peared in a livery which told her to her greife he was not, and presented a Letter to her, with which, when she had opend it she was thus accosted.

Floras to Astasia.

CErtafilan takes me for one of the most wic­ked men in the world, but I shall let you see that his wickedness is far greater than mine. I have received instructions from him eight dayes hence to carry you secretly to one of his houses, where he resolves to keep you prisoner all your life. I give you notice of it to the end that you may prevent it, and I withall intreate you to keep it secret. It is a glory to shun the precipice into which an enemy would make one fall: think therefore at present both of comfor­ting and of delivering yourself and hereafter when you shall command me I shall entertaine y [...]u more at large with the story.

As Astasia read these lines she often tur­ned pale and red by sudden vicissitudes. See­ing [Page 185] which without doubt, my Sister, said Feonice to her, you have a subject of affliction in what you read. The newes (alas!) which I have sent me, replied [...]stasia, are sufficient to alarum and distract a spirit much more fortified than mine; read them, my deare Sister, and see if it is without cause that I am troubled. Feonice having read what she shewed her, Treacherous and Salvage man together, cried she, can hea­ven know thy pernicious baseness and not a­biss thee? What hath Astasia done to thee that thou shouldst thus unworthily treat her? It is necessary, my [...]ister, adjoined she, not only to beleive Floras, but at what­soever rate to deliver yourself from Certafi­lan. I now see, resumed Astasia, that the melancholy with which I have been opprest, but of which I could not tell you the reason was an augury of the evills which this in hu­mane brewes against me, and indeed we of­ten have sadnesses, which though we know not the ground nor meaning of, are omens of misfortunes which too nearely (though dar­kely) hang over our head. But there is a remedy for those that are prepared for you, said Feonice; Floras hath befreinded you with the meanes of avoiding them; Let us therefore retire into your Closet, there to [Page 186] contrive your safety. Entered there Astasia fell onweeping as if she had had an intention to drown her life in her Teares: but her Si­ster at length prevailing with her to dry her eyes to consider of what she had to do, I think it requisite, said she to her, that you should first of all make answer to Floras, and then when we have dismist his man, we will send advertisement to the King of Certa­filans purposes. You know the compassio­nate nobleness of his spirit, and what an e­nemy he is to such as are treacherous. You neede not therefore doubt but he will quick­ly restrain if not punish the wickedness of that wild beast your Husband. I cannot but acknowledge, returned Astasia to her, that Polianis is the most excellent Monarch in the world, and that he interests himself there­fore also in the concernements of my fortune because I am your Sister. But will not this be to be allwayes a prisoner to stay with them whom he shall appoint to hinder Cer­tafilan from imprisoning me? I have a secret which I must no longer conceal from you, Alcidor loves me, and that (if I do not mis­take by being over-credelous) in such a de­gree that there is nothing of difficulty which can affright him or will hold him back from succouring me.

[Page 187] If you are certaine of Alcidors affection, replied Feonice, you need not be affraid of Certafilans cruelty: but what evidences have you of it and since when was it born? see the testimonies, returned Astasia, giving her Alcidors Letter, after which I think I cannot lawfully call his love in question: see also the returne which I have made to it, ad­ded she, giving her a copy of her answer to him. Feonice having perused them, Astasia made a relation to her of what had past be­tween them, which done, considering all, said Feonice, I no longer doubt that Alcidor loves you and therefore I no longer appre­hend that your condition is desperate. And as to your love of him a woman barbarously handled as you have been by one bound to use you with all imaginable sweeteness as is Certafilan, cannot be blamed for seeking are­fuge against that barbarisme. One allwayes lookes with pitty upon those women who do nothing that may seem dishonorable but what absolute necessity constraines them to, and though it be a most reproacheable business to deceive a good husband, it is, if an of­fence, a very pardonable one, to free ones self from the persecution of a bad one. I reckon indeed, replied Astasia, that if in this present streight wherein I am against my [Page 188] will ingaged I take any course that shall ob­scure my vertue and bring it into question, the reall fault will be his who by his intole­rable usage of me forces me to it. With these words the Teares coming apace in her eyes Feonice to give a stop to them put her upon drawing an answer to Floras, which she did to his effect.

Astasia to Floras.

HAd you never given any other proofes of your generosity than what you have now given me, they are sufficient to make me esteem you one of the most generous men in the world. He whom Certafilan hath chosen to execute his cruelty upon me is he who delivers me from it, than which nothing can be more noble, nothing more obliging. Such a sense of it hath my Si­ster, and she will let you see that she hath: much more have I, and I shall allwayes indeavor by my due acknowledgements of your goodness to testify to you that Astasia is though an unfortu­nate yet not an ingrate.

Feonice approoving this letter Astasia sea­led it and delivered it to the lacquey of Flo­ras with a largess which abundantly rewar­ded his paines. The Messenger gone, this [Page 189] is not all, my Sister, said Feonice, now you have the quill in your hand write also to your Alcidor and summon him to keep his promise of assisting you; I doubt not but we shall have him here with us soon after he knowes that you have need of him. I shall try, replied Astasia, what influence my words can have upon him, and therewith thus set down her mind.

Astasia to Alcidor.

I Am upon the point of being undone if you come not quickly to me to oppose your chari­table power to the unjust rage of Certafilan. A few dayes hence he intends to have me con­veighed to a perpetuall prison: it is from the person who is to carry me away that I have re­ceived the favorable notice of it. Though my merit cannot, yet may my misery at this time induce you to act for my contentment. All is said when Astasia conjures you to do it by the affection that you pretend to beare her.

Astasia putting this letter into her Gentle­man's hands, he put it by point of day the next morning into Alcidors, and Alcidor had no sooner read it, but, I have now, said he to himself, got into my power such an [Page 190] opportunity as I have often wisht for of let­ting Astasia see, that I place my happiness in serving her, that I prize my own life less than her liberty, and that having love for my Commander there is nothing too hard for me (to attempt at least if not) to break through in her Quarrell. Considering there­fore, proceeded he, that nothing is more prejudiciall to business of moment than re­misseness, and that Feonice being of our par­ty will render Polianis also of it, let us make haste to her who with so much sweetness and earnestness calls us. What he said he made good, mounting presently on horsback with halfe a score men in whom he had confi­dence, and arriving with the two Sisters just when they were preparing for bed, not without filling them with astonishment at his diligence and contentment at his presence. You are come, Sir, said Feonice to him, (while Astasia recollected her scattered sen­ses,) to succor my Sister against her Husband who goes about to murder her with affli­ction; I very much resent my self your deb­tor for it, and possibly I shall not be so un­happy but I shall have the power one day of giving you proof of my resentment together with her. I have, Madam, replied Alci­dor to her, nor power, nor courage nor [Page 191] freinds nor interest which I will not gladly imploy in the service of your Sister who de­serves no less at the hands of all that know her. But the business being of action bare words are unprofitable as which ought to have effects for their warrant. What there­fore is there requisite to be done, Madam, for this Lady whom I see wholly seized with the apprehension which she hath of fal­ling into the hands of her enemy. It is with the pleasure which I have with seeing you, said she presently to him, that I am thus ex­tasied, and by that and by the liberty and confidence with which I have summoned you to my assistance you my easyly judge in what esteem you are with me. If we are by common humanity, Madam, returned Alcidor to her, bound to succor those whom we know not, as we without question are, it is a farr greater tye which I have upon me to do all that lies in my power for you who are the soul of my soul, and if I think not too fondly of myself, that zeal which I have for your security will, when you have told me what you judge sitting to be done for it, impower me to do it so happyly that I make no doubt but you shall soon see Certafilan's purposes converted into smoke. Alcidor, replied Astasia to him, who knowes all the [Page 192] arts of War, who hath been used to break squadrons and force Towns, who found out plenty of stratagems to support the league, cannot surely want an expedient to deliver Astasia from Certafilan. I depended upon your contrivance as well as execution. Say therefore what course you judge in my con­dition convenient to besteered. Only first, adjoined she, giving him the letter of Floras, reade the information which hath been sent me of my condition. Alcidor having read the letter a consulation was held, of which the result was that Astasia should put herself in a pages habit that so, as Alcidor told her, she who was worthy to command the greatest Kings of the earth might in that garbe of ser­vitude avoide the danger of being known, and under that disguise, the covert of the night and Alcidors conduct retire to a freinds house, there to lye hid till the King having notice of what was intended against her should, as they made no que­stion but he would, take order for her safety. Accordingly Alcidor presenting to her a page's habit which he had for the purpose brought with him, she drest herself in it, and in this dress her beauty was so far from lo­sing any of its power that love who perfor­med the cheif part in this act took advantage [Page 191] by it to strike the Cavaleir anew, and he strucke him with so much force that he stood gazing upon her without being able to speak a word. Feonice taking notice of it, if he from whom you are to defend my Sister meets you, Sir, said she to him, and you turn as voide of sense then as you appear now▪ I may lay any wager that she is lost and am sure to winne. But astonish your self no far­ther to see her unhappiness compell her thus to habit her self. If you was capable of re­marking, Madam, replied Alcidor to her that which Love makes me take notice of in this faire Queene of his Empire you would have your speech and judgment left you as little it may be as I have had. Certafilan himself could not with all the hard and feirce thoughts that he hath for her consider her in this posture but he would have some mild and tender ones mixt with them. This is but to trifle and make sport with my mise­sery, and we have at present something else to minde said Astasia, and therewith fell on weeping, and Feonice together with her. But Alcidor to take them of from that sad exer­cise obliged them to bid one another fare­well, led Astasia to her horse, helpt her up and past away with her.

The Summer season and the light of the [Page 192] Moon making it pleasant travailing Alcidor renderd it more pleasant to Astasia by en­tertaining her with very taking discourses, and to himself by considering her feminine graces in her masculine habit. One thing which they both pleased themselves with was that their journey was known to no­body but those to whom they were willing it should be known, but here in they were deceived.

Certafilan had sent to the Waters to be a spy over his wife's carriage one Berlin, and he by counterfeiting the fool, had so easy at access into the Lodgings of Feonice and A­stasia that there was scarce any thing done there which he had not opportunity of being acquainted with. This subtle agent seeing Alcidor, arrive and knowing the suspicio [...] which Certafilan had of him, with a vigi­lance which was most artificially dissemble observed all transactions and by that mean (the Ladies and Alcidor using no cautio [...] against him because as they thought him voi [...] of apprehension) heard the greatest part [...] what they said, and particularly what way they would take to gaine their retreat. With this intelligence he flew to Certafilan, Certa­silan again flew whither he directed him with a troop of his freinds and servants. Bu [...] [Page 193] whatsoever diligence he used, and he used all that he could, he could not meet with these whom he saught for.

Some hunters who had first seen in ar­mes Alcidor and his Company seeing again Certafilan and his, not knowing who they were nor with what intention they were a­broad, carried notice of it to the King. The King dispatching troops in search of them, some of them in the inquest met with Ber­lin who had lost his way in a Wood. Berlin informing them what the business was, they carried him to the King. The King hearing his story, though he disliked the action of Alcidor as knocking against his authority, he nevertheless commanded that Emissary of Certafilan and those that had taken him upon perill of their lifes to speak nothing of it.

As they withdrew from his presence with this order Certafilan enterd it and in a most pittyfull fashion applying himself to him, see me here, Great Prince, said he, to de­mand justice against Alcidor for his egregi­ous. Enterprize in carrying away my wife from the place whither your appointment sent her to keep her Sister company. You are more just than not to chastise this auda­cious undertaker who at the same time bra­ves your authority and ruines the honor of [Page 194] one of your most faithfull servants. I come now from seeking him, and could I have found him I would have made him bear u­pon the feild the revenge of the offence that he hath done me. Though by your own confession, Certafilan, returned Polianis to him, you demand not justice of me but be­cause you cannot execute it yourself, I have, notwithstanding that, a due compassion of your trouble. You had done well if as soon as you knew what Alcidor had done you had instead of arming you and going abroad with a party to set upon him in my forrest & kill him at the feet of your judge and his, came and complained to me of him. You know I suppose how your equipage hath a­larumed me, and made me, least my own person should be aimed at, guard myself in a more than ordinary manner. But be pa­tient and you shall see that I am King to ani­madvert upon those that are insolent. See withall, added he, what it is to incense wives, and the salary that one receives for suspecting foolishly their fidelity. Without question it is Astasia's sense of the old in­dignities that you have heaped upon her and her feares that you would load her farther with new ones that have moved her thus to take her flight from you. Did you not [Page 195] know that I am acquainted with a part of your capricious and frantick carriage to­wards her, I should not at present put you in mind of it. The care that I have taken to reform it may well make you remember the little account that you have made of my remonstrances and desires. How of [...]e [...] too hath Feonice soberly reproved you [...] those furious humors with which you have made her Sister weary of her life without being able to do any good upon you. Astasia would be much more blameable than she is, had she not so much cause to complain of you as she hath, and Alcidor would be far more cul­pable than he is, if you had not given him a very specious pretext with which to excuse himself. Not that I approve enormous actions: time will shew you that I very well know to correct and curbe the rashness of those who enterprize more than they ought in my dominion, where I would have not vice but vertue bear sway: I have no­thing of good reason, Sir, said Certafilan, where with to purge myself of the fault with which you charge me. I freely confess I am in a high degree guilty both of disrespect to your Majesty and of inhumanity to Astasia: when I disobeyed you, I had lost my reason, when I treated her ill, I was madde, and [Page 196] when I armed myself and my freinds to de­destroy Alcidor, my trouble made me for­get my duty and think of nothing but re­venge. Pardon me, Sir, for what is past, and for what is to come, I shall so change my temper that neither your Majesty shall have occasion to reprove me for my capri­cious and franticke carriage towards Astasia, nor Feonice for my furious humor. But to give proof of what I say, where is now Asta­sia? She is ravisht from me, Sit, and it is from your justice that I wait for reparation of the injury. If Astasia, Certafilan, said the King to him, hath caused herself to be carried away, it is not to ruine either her own honor or yours; her vertue forbids any thing bad to be suspected of her, and you well know she hath not gone away but to warrant herself from the afflictions which she apprehended you would lay upon her afresh. Retire therefore without any disor­der, and leave me to manage her return and the whole affair; I will labour both for your contentment and of all that are con­cerned.

Certafilan in obedience to what the King said withdrawing, better satisfied than he ho­ped to be, was no sooner come into his doors but Floras came to him, exprest a very [Page 197] affectionate regret for his Ladies flight, and offerd to find her out wheresoever she was and to carry her to whatsoever place he should appoint. Beleeving [...]he spake from his heart, he heartyly thankt him, but withall told him that he was now so far re­mote from any such purpose as he before de­sired him to assist him in, that he had no longer any suspicion of his wife, and that, the King having promised to reconcile them, he made no question but what had past, though it seemed to be very much to his detrim [...]nt, would turn as much to his benefit.

While Certafilan was thus growing con­vert from his jealousy, though she who had been the object of it little thought of his change, yet having reached her retreat in which she saw she was out of danger of the tormenting effects of that his raging humor, knowing also that she had in Feonice a better second with the King than that she needed fear his anger, experimenting besides in the company of Alcidor the difference between kind respects and barbarous indignities she relaxed her mind, tied up as it had been to a diet of sorrow, to feed at large upon de­light. Alcidor also made much of the liber­ty which he had of her society and congratu­lated himself in it as a most blest man. But [Page 198] yet amidst these inchanting sweetnesses they both of them had so much consideration that Alcidor by Astasia's approbation left her the next morning and went to the King to give him an account of what they had done. Which being performed, and the King ha­ving read the letter of Floras to Astasia, it is by this, said he to Alcidor holding it in his hand, what we shall still the complaints of Certafilan, who yesterday demanded ju­stice of me against you. I suppose Floras will not want the courage to maintain to his face that not being able to execute what he desired without an odious baseness he thought himself bound by the Laws of hu­manity to give notice of it to her against whom it was intended. I will therefore in your justification send for him and ingage him publickly to own himself the author of what you have been the agent. Your Maje­sty, replied Alcidor, will (I make no que­stion) bring the affaire to such an issue that the vertue of Astasia, the honesty of Floras and my fidelity shall lie under no ill name. He had scarce said so when Floras came into the Chamber, whom the King as soon as he saw him asking what brought him thither so early he answerd, the service that he owed his Majesty. But how, said the King, can I [Page 199] beleive them my servants who league them­selves with Certafilan to carry on his tyran­ny over his wife altogether contrary to my will. If your Majesty, returned Floras, will be pleased to let my speak for my self I make no question but I shall so fully clear my innocence in that which you accuse me of; that you will deigne me instead of your disfavor your approbation. Trouble not yourself Floras, replied the King, you may by this see (therewith he shewed him his let­ter to Astasia) that my accusation of you is only feined. But it is requisite that you maintain before me to the face of Certafi­lan that he desired you to be confederate and executioner of that detestable peice of vio­lence upon his wife of carrying her to the place which he intended to make her jayle, and that having a horror of it you, as you thought yourself in honor bound, discovered the contrivance to her. Your Majesty, said Floras, requires no more of me than what truth, common equity and my own credit render my duty, and what I am therefore ready with all my heart to do. Certafilan will not, I am sure, deny that the evening before his wife went with her Sister to the Waters carrying me into your Majesty's garden he there told me that he was resolved [Page 200] to shut her up and keep her in Close impri­sonment all her life, discoverd to me the plott that he had laid to effect it, and con­jured me to be the Conductor of it, that which I promised him to be though at the same time I determined the contrary. Hea­ring him say so, the King sent a page for Cer­tafilan; who presently coming allmost out of breath with haste, oh Certafilan, said the King to him, here is Alcidor now against whom you yesterday demanded justice of me; tell me therefore if you are in the same mind to day. The offence that he had done me, Sir, replied Certaiflan, is greater by much than that unless I am unsensible I should easily forget it or pass it by. To this Alcidor having his mouth open to repart, If you think, Certafilan, said the King, that in having delivered Astasia from your ugly and unsufferable oppression Alcidor hath committed a great offence, you must seek else where to have him punisht than of me, and perswade me to chastise myself. It was indeed by my order that he conveighd away your wife whom I knew Floras who is here present was by your order to carry away, to make her miserable all her life. I would not yesterday tell you this because I ex­pected that you would of yourself confess [Page 201] your fault; but finding you still in the mind to persist in it, I would have you know that Kings have intelligences which their people have not. Hear Floras speak against you, he is a wittness whom you cannot refuse. Presently Floras offering to convict him, see, Certafilan, proceeded the King, the Letter which hath discoverd your conspira­cy, and obliged me to take into my pro­tection the deare Sister of Feonice, and give Alcidor command to carry her away. Cer­tafilan having read the Letter with the name of Floras to it, Just heavens, cried he, what means you have to take vengeance on the wicked, causing them to be detected by by the same persons whom they would ren­der partisans of their wickedness. I see, Sir, added he, that he who I expected would have favoured my enterprize, hath accused me of it: but I am so far from taking it ill at his hands that he hath used me thus, that I very much esteem him for it, knowing that he hath herein been a true freind as well to my happiness as to his own honor. I con­fess, repent, renounce my bruitishness to­wards Astasia, and I will no more be go­verned with that madness which hath hi­therto made me continually see things other­wise than they have really been. Hearing [Page 202] him in this strain, mens hearts, said Poli­anis, do sometimes change on a sudden, but that Certafilan whom all my Court have for his usage of his wife reckoned not much bet­ter than a salvage beast should in a moment become humane and tractable is a wonder which will very hardly gain beleif. I shall nothwithstanding take your word and I shall indeavor also to bring your wife to do the same and to make you freinds. For a prologue to which reconciliation between you and her, I must at present have one made between you and Alcidor; oppose my will, neither of you. I am ready, Sir, said Alci­dor, to give Certafilan testimony that I have a serious desire to serve him. And I, said Certafilan, am ready to make it appear that I cordially honor Alcidor. Many more ex­pressions of amity used Certafilan to Alcidor, and Alcidor to Certafilan; many also used Certafilan and Floras to one another. In the interim of which last, the King drawing Alcidor aside askt him, if it was not advi­seable that Astasia should be presently brought back to Certafilan. To this, that he might impede the union which he feared would impede his loves, your Majesty, an­swered he, may undertake whatsoever you think good, and I acknowledge one cannot [Page 203] do better than rejoin these divided spirits, but I withall know that Certafilan's acted and intended inhumanities have so irritated his Lady against him that she can scarce endure to hear his name; much less will she en­dure quickly to returne to his person. His brutall unkindeness hath newly forced her to seek her safety in running away from him, it cannot be therefore expected that she should suddenly trust herself again with him. For if she is of a sweet disposition she is also sensible of abuses. There is reason, Alcidor, said the King, in what you say: It is indeed necessary both that he should undergo pennance for what he hath done, and that she should receive satisfaction for what she had sufferd. He shall not therefore come near her till he hath appeased her. But that he may have no occasion of speaking or thinking ill of her absence and that all Kings may go according to decency, I would have her leave the place where she is, and put herself with the Religious of whom your Kinswoman is the superiour.

The King, who though he had a sharp ingeny to peirce into the mysteries of love perceived nothing of Alcidor's towards A­stasia, having thus concluded with him about the disposing of her as if he had had a mind [Page 204] to furnish him with meanes of seeing her without exception. Her husband coming to him, your Majesty, said he, I hope que­stions not my resolution of relapsing no more into my old disease; permit me therefore I beseech you to have before my eyes her whom I have most unjustly tormented but without whom I cannot now live but in tor­ment myself. Considering the animosities which you have raised in her, returned the King to him, and the condition into which you have driven her, it would be plain folly to imagin that she should be easily bent and retrived to your will. She is not retired from the world to be willing to con­verse so soon again with men, especially with him who hath given her such argu­ments of distrusting him as you have done. My Counsell therefore to you is that suffe­ring her to live with her regret for a time among that vertuous troop whither she hath withdrawn herself you let her know your repentance by letters, and by promising her a usage to come as kind as what is past hath been harsh, you endeavor to make her lose that grudge with which her stomach boiles against you. This I beleive to be the best expedient that you can use to restore you with her, and I will withall desire Feonice [Page 205] as soon as she returnes to advance your re­conciliation the quickliest that she can. That I must not presently have her company, an­swered Certafilan, is an infelicity which I know not how to undergo; but I shall, all that I am able, inforce myself to be patient under it, knowing myself to be the cause of it, and I will draw from my afflicted heart the most moving and effectuall lines that I can to procure my peace with her. I would have no other but Floras deliver them to her, said the King, for the sight of him will I beleive be very acceptable to her, since it was by his means that she knew and disappointed your intentions of immuring her. Floras speaking himself very desirous of the service Certafilan presently took him to his Chamber and there wrot this letter before him.

Certafilan to Astasia.

YOu are no more to fear the furious trans­ports of Certafilan; the King, Alcidor and Floras know that I have as affectionate de­sires of making your honor shine as ever my usage of you hath been cruell with which I have gone about to darken it. Remember therefore no more my outrages unless it be to represent to [Page 206] your self the greife which I have for making you suffer them, but permit me to come to you in the Cloister where Alcidor hath told me you have settled your new abode. He and I am freinds, and I shall allwayes esteem myself redeuable to Floras for the advise that he gave you. Judge therefore if I consider not my misdemeanors with a penitent shame and horror.

Certafilan having after he had read this Letter to Floras committed it to his charge, he and Alcidor went together with it to A­stasia. In the Court of whose retreat they and Feonice very happily arriving together, she contained not her self a minute after she had notice of it, but instantly flew from her Chamber to receive them. The first ce­remonies of meeting being done, Floras pre­sented to her the Letter which he had in trust. Which she having read first to her­self, then aloud, and Floras and Alcidor having related what had past between the King, Certafilan and themselves she exprest a joy which overflowed the banks of her usuall moderation, and she acknowledged herself debtor to both of them with a stream of thanks which though they set themselves against it bare them away with it. She besi­des as soon as she had opportunity declared [Page 207] to Alcidor that she was therefore transported with the change of Certafilan because she ho­ped that they two might by that means keep an unobstructed and an unsuspected corre­spondency. They indeed both of them watched all opportunities and made the best of them to give one another testimonies of an ardent affection, and there was nothing wanting to them but a full liberty of doing so to complet the sweetne [...]ses of the present society. But to Feonice there was wanting the presence and caresses of Polianis: with him she thought long to be; but she was obliged by his desires of which Alcidor was the messenger to her, before she took her way to him to see her Sister safe at the Religious house where he had appointed she should stay. Thither therefore they all after two dayes conducted her, and there after two or three houres they left her, she having first written and committed to the care of Floras the ensueing Letter.

Astasia to Certafilan.

I Receive some comfort a midst my miseries by knowing that you are troubled for making me endure them, but I cannot lose my sense of the barbarousness with which you have made [Page 208] me endure them. It is against that you know that I have been constrained, seeing what little respect you bore to the royall mansion, to take san­ctuary in a religious one. Here, having con­sulted spirits to whom my interests are very dear, I am advised to pass some months to gain fresh strength with which to serve myself if you shall go about again to make me a suffe­rer, and hence I shall then come, and not till then, when I shall be well assured that you will have no more designe of making me your slave who am your wife and of destroying me whom you ought to Cherish.

The prudent trustee of these lines carrying them first to the King, then to him to whom they were directed, with the scheme in which he represented to him all things con­cerning his Lady at the same time, whetted his desires of recovering her company and workt him without any peevishness to sub­mit to her determination of staying a while from him. The King, Certafilan carrying the Letter to him, after he had read it the second time as if it had been the first, secon­ded what Floras had said to him and by the comment which he made upon Astasia's text absolutely convinced him that for her to ab­sent herself for a while from him was no [Page 209] more than what she owed to her innocence and to her repose, and that for him after he had driven her away from him to force her to returne to him before she thought it con­venient, was to persist in his merciless perse­cution of her, not to repent of it. Notwith­standing this, his fond appetite of having her again with him growing every houre more and more restlesly eager, he was con­tinually soliciting the King, Feonice, Floras and Alcidor to be the charitable authors of procuring and hastening it, and the three former were serious in advancing what he sued for; Alcidor also made shews of favou­ring it as much as any, but having liberty where she was of seeing her every day with­out disturbance, he clancularly set all the engines of his wit on work to keep her there: and by his elusive arts he retarded her returne to Certafilan for a month without either the King knowing any thing of their amorous converses or Certafilan discovering so much as the scene where they were acted. But at length the King making oath to that disconsolate and importunate husband that he would within eight dayes bring her back into his armes, and sending her Sister to her to effect it, he remonstrated first to himself and then to her, that to keep the Kings fa­vor, [Page 210] to perserve her honor and happiness, and dextrously to conduct the caball of their loves it was necessary she should rejoin her­self with him to whom the Laws had tied her and whose remorses called her back to him. To this his advise (they having rati­fied their affections to one another with fresh and strong protestations of constancy) and to her Sisters perswasions she resigned her­self and they went together the next mor­ning to Paquin.

Here she had not been many hours before word was sent of it to Certafilan, but this no­tice withall that she would never more co­habit with him unless he would swear be­fore the King, Feonice, Alcidor, and Floras that he would never more abuse her. To this he returning answer that he had not so wholly lost his reason as to refuse to redeem his happiness upon such easy and honourable tearmes: an interveiw was orderd and effe­cted, and he before the wittnesses that she desired made Oath to to her, that his carriage towards her for the time to come should be a perfect recantation of what was past and an unblotted Coppy of all the offices of love. He having by these and other unquestionable testimonies of his reformation obliged her to be reconceiled to him, and she having de­clared [Page 211] that she was willing to be so, The King put her into his hands with a most bin­ding exhortation to him to be as good as his word. Which done, and he having kist her with a kind of adoration before Polianis, he carried her to a house which he had prepa­red for her reception, and there the next day banqueted Feonice Alcidor and Floras with a most magnificent kindeness.

He in the sequcle of this never stirred from her, but was continually paying her the respects not only of a fond husband but of a superstitious votary, and after a while that he might enjoy her beloved society at quiet he with her consent carried her into the Countrey and there fettled their habita­tion. This change of their abode is belei­ved to have put an end to the loves between Astasia and Alcidor, in her absence another Lady taking possession of his heart: but ha­ving of this no clear knowledge I choose to speak of it not at all rather than not suffici­ently.

Melian having done reading and resigned the book, and the Company having thankt Alcidor for the use of it, Alcidor, said Do­rame, would be yet more obliging, if he would recount to us those his following loves which the writer sayes he was not well [Page 212] enough acquainted with. You will it may be, replied Alcidor when you have heard all, name me a very inconstant man; but there is nothing in the world besides your disaffection which I would not cheerfully undertake or undergo to satisfy you. I am therefore ready to do that which you desire. To this Dorame making no other answer but by disposing herself to an attention he suc­cinctly related what had past between him and Carmelia, what also between him and Felisbea, carefully reserving whatsoever might seem to knock against the honor of ei­ther of them.

His narrative concluded, you cannot think, said Dorame to him, that Felisbea died for any thing else but for your neglects, and I cannot but wonder that her beauty being ve­ry taking, her spirit accomplisht and her quality honourable you would not think of marrying her. I acknowledge, returned Al­cidor to her, that the birth and perfections of that young Lady were such as challenged for her a husband of a far higher forme than Alcidor; but there are certain fatali­ties which rule the course of our lifes, so that we act not but according to their pre­scriptions. What was the cause of Felibea's death I know not, but the reason why I was [Page 213] not in love with her without doubt was be­cause my destiny reserved me to be in love with the incomparable Dorame. It is for the love and service of you, Madam, continued he that I was born and that I am to live: my passion for you is not of the number of those that are ruined by time; and this I reckon I can vow before no persons better than before these your nearest relations, and I vow it with so sincere an a [...]dor that I am ready to signe it with whatsoever there is that is dearest to me. Hearing these words come from him, we have reason to beleive my neice, said Rolimon, that Alcidor speaks from his heart, and to what purpose should these many ceremonies be used where marriage is the substance aimed at? My o­pinion is that you should make a mutuall contract of love, after which there will be no fear that any body else should pretend to either of you. You speak, Sir, replied Alci­dor to him, like one that knows how to find the knot of such an affaire as this in hand; And I swear, Madam, addrest he himself to Dorame, that, if you will think of no other husband but Alcidor, I will think of no other wife but Dorame. And I protest returned Do­rame to him, that if you will have no other wife but Dorame, I will have no other hus­band [Page 214] but Alcidor. He having, as soon as those words were out of her mouth, with a grace­full veneration kist it, they again by Melian's motion solemnely promist to marry one the other as soon as she had completed her year of widdowhood. Which tie being made and thereby that which all the Company desired as firmely secured as could be wisht to be at present they with a generall pleasantness, continued conversing upon that and other subjects till they were called to supper, and after supper till the late houres commanded them to bed.

The End of the third Book.

The Fourth Book.

ALcidor rising early the next morning as being kept from sleeping by his thoughtfull love found that Dorame, whom he beleived yet in bed, was gotten up before him and walkt abroad. Finding her out he entertai­ned her with what she had been entertaining herself, his affections, and she changed not the subject till they were interrupted by Ro­limon, Melian and Vindorix who came to bidde them good morrow and farewell to­gether. The Lovers endeavoured to re­tain them, but they gave them reasons for their going away which induced them to al­low it. Betaking themselves therefore all together into the house they had been but a few moments there when Meonimus arrived, and he had not been much longer there be­fore [Page 216] he told Alcidor that he mother of Almi­don was about to inform against him for the killing of her son, advising him not to de­ferre getting a pardon by which to put him­self out of all danger from the Law. At this notice Alcidor was not at all disturbed, know­ing that Polianis had a better opinion of him than to be quickly imprinted with a bad one or indeed to deny him any thing that he should ask, but Dorame was very much troubled, and choosing rather to deprive herself of her con­tentment in his company for a time than de­tain him with her when his stay might be disadvantageous to him, conjured him with all speed to make a journey to Paquin to the end that he might prevent his enemies and put himself under covert against their ma­lice. This counsell being backt and urged by the rest of the Company, he only staied breakfast and badde Dorame adieu. Rolimon, Melian, Vindorix and Meonimus going a long with him to his house they all staied there that night, and the next morning par­ted, the three first to go home, and Alcidor and Meonimus to Court.

Here Alcidor going to the King and re­porting to him his adventures with Cartage­nes and Almidon and the danger that he was in of being prosecuted for their deaths, he [Page 217] very graciously gave him his pardons for both and caused them to be allowed by the Counsell of twelve Auditors, the Letter which Cartagenes wrot before his death to Dorame and the testimony of Limonides ser­ving very happily for his justification.

Polianis farther by the contexture of Alcidors business understanding that Dorame was his Mistress exprest severall times to him that he was very much pleased with it; one time in particular, there is nothing, brave Alci­dor, said he to him, which obstructs your loves, for Florisa is courted in marriage by my Cozen Eridan, Astasia is lately dead, and Carmelia hath taken the hahit of a Reli­gious: See I say if there be any thing to keep you from pursuing and injoyning your pre­sent affections since of your three former Mistresses there is but one of them retaining to the world, where also she is so straightly guarded that nobody can have her Company but the Prince whom I now spake of. I am not ignorant of the Love which she hath had for you, her brother having recounted to me that which he knew of it by their Uncle, who hath many times had purposes of sending you out of the world upon that occasion. But she now gives hopes that she will entertain that new Lover, and not only Dorilas wishes [Page 218] you as well as you can desire, but Lucimon also is disarmed of the choler which he hath had against you, knowing that the offence which he beleived you to have committed proceeded not from you but from his neice. These two Princes I have made your freinds, and I would have you as soon as you can joine myrtles to your laurells so that Hymen as well as Mars may render your life glo­rious. The many powerfull reasons, Sir, replied Alcidor, which I had to hold Astasia in esteem while he lived render it imposible for me not be troubled for her death. If Flo­risa is loved by Eridan and acknowledges the merit of that Prince of your blood, the success will be far more advantageous to her than if she had nourisht an affection for one so unworthy of her as myself. For Car­melia I reckon that she could not have beta­ken herself to an abode more convenient to regret the loss of her deare Clidantus than that which she hath so sagely chosen. And for my own particular I have abundant obli­gation to your Majesty for the acts of Grace which your Clemency hath granted me, without that by an excess of favor you should procure me the good will of two Princes whose ill will I have allwayes been appre­hensive of, and as much as I could shunned [Page 219] the means of provoking. If the Princess Flo­risa hath done me the honor of testifying some kindness to me, I never have abused it, nor have I ever had the temerity to aspire to things contrary to reason and my duty: and if for having before them quitted the party which they headed, they have wisht me ill, why did they betake themselves to the same obedience that made me acknow­ledge you my King? Have not they been constrained to subject themselves to the Laws of your Majesty as well as to those of your Kingdome? You have acted, Alcidor, resumed the King, very well in every thing, and with the services that you have done me since you have restored your self to your allegiance I have so much reason to satisfie my self that waiting for some better grati [...]i­cation of them I at present make you my leif­tenant of my Company of men at armes. Li­santus is dead, Alcidor, pursued he, and my regret for his death sufficiently declares what esteem I have for men of courage. At these words Alcidor could [...]ot hinder him­self from letting fall some teares, nor could the King forbear having some stand in his eyes, and farther was the memory of the loss of that great captain about to carry them into melancholy, when Lucimon and [Page 220] Dorilas came in to them and dismist it. See the generous Alcidor, my Cozens, said the King to them presently, love him for the sake of his valor, and for love of me; there are few of his fashion to be found in the world: we were just now speaking of you. The King thus accosting them and Alcidor very civilly addressing himself to them, they both imbraced him and acknowledging his high value, desired him to beleive that they had, and as long as they lived, would have a very cordiall amity for him. To which he having answerd them what was [...]itting, he left them and the King together and went to his Lodging.

Come thither he wrot to Dorame an ac­count of all his occurrencies to this last, and particularly what was become of Florisa, A­stasia and Carmelia. The conclusion of his Letter was an assurance of the King's appro­bation of their marriage and of his own speedy returne to her. Limonides was the carrier o [...] it.

About three dayes after Alcidor being with the King newes was brought him that the forces of Atalantus had taken Thiau by assault and Senoy by composition, and made very ill work in the province of Xan­ton. Hereupon he with all speed called an [Page 221] assembly in forme of the estates and caused to be levied a potent army with which to put a stop to the progress of those inva­ders. But while preparations were in hand against them, what by the imprudent will­fullness of the inhabitants who would not receive any souldiers in garrison, and what by the menaces of some factious, they sur­prized Huc [...]io in open day. Thither for the recovery of it the King determining within two or three dayes to march, he told Alcidor that notwithstanding his affairs of love he must go along with him his Feild-Marshall; but withall that he might go first and wait upon his Mistress for a few houres. Which liberty he used with a diligence which carried him quickly to her, if the first sight of him inspired her with joy, he quickly changed it into affliction, by telling her what a short limit of time he had to stay with her, and what imployment the King had ingaged him in which renderd it so short. Hearing this, to go to this seige, said she, with a face full of trouble, is to go to be killed rather than to fight; I cannot therefore, added she, but be very much dissatisfied with your going. But setting before her eyes the Kings com­mand and the forfeiture which he should make of his favor by not obeying it, then the [Page 222] glory of the imployment and the irreparable damage which he should contract to his ho­nor by refusing it, perswading her also that there was not so much danger in the expe­dition as she imagined and that in all proba­bility he should not be long before he retur­ned, he in a good measure lessened her dissa­tisfaction. What remained after this of the three houres which he told her he had to spend with her they made much of in prote­sting to one another inviolable affections, and in giving and receiving caresses of which the harmless fervor and sweetenss made it pitty they should be quickly broken of: But time calling him away they kist and badde adieu, not without sighes on both parts, love requiring that tribute of them.

No sooner was Alcidor returned to Pa­quin, but he parted from it, the King the next day marching away to invest Huchio; and there the first task of his armes was to de­feate the forces of the enemie's Field-Mar­shalls, and he therein performed wonders. Some dayes after the seige was fixt the gross of the beseiged Cavalry making a salley with designe of beating up a quarter, and it being Alcidors let to command that time at the place where they came on, though he had not with him above two thirds of the Kings [Page 223] Company of men at armes, and the enemies were four or five hundred Lances, he upon a slow pace attended them, and stoutly re­ceiving them, performed against them all that was possible with so small a number. He had not indeed strength enough to keep his men from being at length beaten back; but he quickly returned with them to a second charge, and at the instant that Polianis was dispatching succours to him inflaming his own courage and animating his Companions fell with the impetuousness of a Whirle­winde into the enemy-squadrons, put them all in disorder, made them turn their backs, and pursued them, taking and killing them, as farr as the counterscarpe of the trench. To this action the King and Adrastus his Leifte­nant-generall, in whose sights it was done, gave applauses which plainly fore shewed the memory of it would be immortall. Se­veral other engagements made Alcidor with the enemy during the siege) continually throwing himself into the most dangerous places) and in all of them he was a very suc­cessfull purchaser of renown, but in one of them together with renown, he got a wound with a musquet-shot in the legg, which com­pelled him for awhile to lie still.

Silarmin Generall of the forces of Atalan­tus [Page 224] after he had made many attempts to suc­cour the beseiged and saw he was not able to atchieve it taking his way home wards, and thereupon they in Huchio (the Indian garri­son first passing out in good order) yeelding it up to the King, he presently led his army (which was composed of the military flower of his Kingdome) after the enemy into their Countrey: but the memory of his past vi­ctories imprinting such a terror upon their souls that they feared nothing so much as that Mars of China's fury: he could by no means draw them to a battel. There in­deed appeared nobody in the Feild to stop his triumphant progress: but to prevent the universall ravaging of his territories Atalan­tus dispatched to him proposalls of reconci­liation, and to give his empire a calm he freely accepted them. Peace being re-esta­blisht and the armies on both sides disband­ed, Polianis promist his subjects a golden age in room of that iron one, which had so long and so sadly aggreived them, and what he promist at the instant began to appear: the artist workt with security, the Merchant trafficked with freedome, the Villager la­boured the earth without fear, King, Prince, Lord, Gentleman, Souldier, they of holy Or­ders and those of common quality feasted [Page 225] themselves with those sweetenesses of re­pose, pleasure, advantage, which the tu­mults of the sword had a great while hinderd them from so much as tasting, in a word all every where in China appeared with a laughing face.

Of this universal joy Alcidor took part a­while about the King, but not with a full satisfaction: to make it full he must see Do­rame, and not only see her, but also accom­plish his marriage with her. The King there­fore at his request dismissing him, not with­out extraordinary commendations of him in the midst of his Court and other remunera­tions of his services worthy of such a Prince, he flew a long the wayes without resting till he was with her. Being gotten again, toge­ther (not without a kind of intoxic [...]tion of delight at their first meeting) they im­ployed their time in recounting to one ano­ther some remarkable peices of their for­tunes which they were not yet acquainted with, and particularly what had occurred to them since their last separation, in discoursing of others and by name of Cloriastes and Car­melia, the former of whom was as well as the latter enterd into a religious Order, in entertaining themselves as occasion and their ingenies led them, but principally in in­terchanging [Page 226] pledges of dearness and in de­signing the order of their wedding.

They thus wearing out the year of wi­dowhood, Alcidor the next day took horse to go wait on Rolimon, Melian, Vindorix and some other friends, and having spent some dayes upon that occasion he spent two at home, during which his house had the aspect of a superbe Court with the visits which persons of Grandeur made him, and with the noble receptions which he gave them. He had here indeed abundantly enough of re­spect shewd him, and good company enough came in to him and was likely to do so, to have tempted him to stay longer, but love called him away, and he took the road to Dorame, having first intreated her and his friends to be the eighth day after at her house to assist at their hymenean rites.

The day come and those that were invited rendring themselves at the palace of Dorame (for so it may well be called, considering the glories with which it shonne) the illustrious pair of Lovers were joined together with ceremonies of exquisite state; there was in­deed nothing of the day which did not make it memorable, the feasting, the dancing, the masking, the musicke were all instances of choice gall [...]ntry and magnificence, but the [Page 227] fairest thing of all was the delivering up of Dorame into the hands of Alcidor by Ladies whose beauty deserved, they should have been lookt upon as so many Suns, but that it was obscured by that of the Bride.

What past in the night between this ex­cellent couple is a mystery, which to divulge would be to profane; but they appeared the next morning like such who had been drinking to and pledging one another in those delights which are the prize, the re­compence, the food of love. Their humor had nothing in it, but serenity; the Company therefore had nothing in it, but mirth; and to nourish it to the highest, improvement was made of all the recreations of body and spirit that were gentile and opportune. This continued eight dayes together, after which (there being a necessity that such festivities should have an end, as well as a beginning) the assembly dissolved and left Alcidor and Dorame to enjoy themselves by them­selves.

But it was not long before Alcidor carry­ing Dorame to his principall House and there installing her absolute Mistress of his estare, as he had done before of his heart they kept a kind of second wedding: Company flowed in from all the neigbourhood to wish them [Page 228] joy and pay them honor, and all the time of their stay was spent in little else but in Feasts, Balls, and receiving and making Visits.

There now wanted nothign to complete Alcidor's ovation, but that his Sun should display her beams in the horizon of the Court. Thither therefore they went toge­ther with an equipage which made all Pa­quin admire it's splendor, as much occusto­med as it was, to see great things. Dorame was so radiant and her retinue so bright, that hardly could there have been imagined a train perfectly assorted to hers, had not Alcidor marched with the same air. He indeed in this notable occasion omitted none of those brave things which had been born with him, and which he had all his life pra­cticed.

Presenting themselves to the King, he en­tertained them with demonstrations of ex­traordinary favor and contentment in seeing them: Staying about half an houre in his presence, the most gallant of the Court were all the while gazing upon them with affe­ctionate admirations: Going away, Dori­las who at the instant came in detained them a while with an accostage made up of civility.

[Page 229] Dorame indeed while her husband Clisidas lived was esteemed one of the fairest and most charming Ladies of the Court; but they who knew her then, and considerd her now, and compared what she was then, with what she was now, proclaimed her beauty & attractions doubled. In augmentation of this glory she suffered it not to make her vainly conceited, but the more she was extolled, the more humbly she demean'd herself: Every wayes were both she and Alcidor of such a frame as made them happy in one another. Never was correspondence more perfect, than theirs, never was con­tentment sweeter; but this latter lasted not long. Dorame after six moons growing hea­vy with Child had by that means so much indisposition, that she was seldome to be seen out of her bed, and Alcidor had so deep a sense of it that he was seldome to be seen out of a dark humor: her illnesses increast and therewith his greifs swelled high. And yet amidst his swollen greifs he would have reckoned himself in some sort happy; if he might still have injoyed her; but to make him the most afflicted man in the world she was by the ravenous hand of death taken away from him; she died in Child-bed to­gether with her Child of which she could [Page 230] not be delivered. Before she expired, I see, my Alcidor, said she to him, I must go from you; it is the will of fate, and that is not to be opposed by our wills. I know the kind­ness that you have for me, will render my death bitter to you; but let it be with mo­deration that you afflict yourself for it. I have done, my dear Alcidor, added she, I leave you, Adieu. Saying so and imbracing him she breathed out her soul upon his lips. At the instant he grew as void of motion, as if he had been as much without sentiment, as the dead body, he sent not a sigh after her, he made no kind of complaint, he was indeed wholly stupefied with extremity of greif: But after a while coming to himself, he by all the great kinds of lamentation characterized himself a most distrest man, there is nothing of serious and masculine sorrow which was not to be seen in him, and he wholly aban­doned himself to be governed by it. Oh Heavens, cried he, what a treasury of beauty and virtue you have despoiled me of! why did you make her so fair, so good, to take her so overhastily away? why did you make me a little while happy in injoyning her, to render me altogether miserable in being without her for the rest of my dayes? Oh the forces of adversity which I have [Page 231] to conflict with but know not how to stand against!

If the nuptialls of Dorame were eximiously remarkable with their refulgent and joyous, so were her funeralls with their sable and lu­gubrious pomp; the King contributed to it his part, all the Court assisted at it, there was nothing missing in it, which might serve, either for the honor of the dead, whose qua­lity and merit chalenged the most stately ob­sequies, or for a testimony of the disconso­late Widower's love and greif which were both extreme. He had indeed so much love for her, that he had none for life; Now that she was no longer living, he would gladly have been laid in the grave with her: he had also so much greif for the loss of her that all mention of comfort was a new way of afflicting him, that all visits were troublesome to him, and that all endeavors to appease his sorrow proved ineffectuall, those of his other freinds who practised all the meanes of doing it that they could de­vise, those of the Princess Florisa who sent Alexis to him upon that errand, and those of the King who laboured it with a particular concerne.

While Alcidor was spending dayes and nights in lamenting his loss, Polianis consi­dering [Page 232] he could have no heirs to his Crown by the infertile Agenora, upon mature delibe­rations concluded to divorce her, and though she was one of the highest born Princesses of Asia, and her beauty and ingeny ran parallell to her birth, yet whether she preferred the good of the publike before her own interest, or whether she was swaied by any private reasons, she testified no other relish of the resolution, than what disposed her to consent to it. This notable separation was no soon­er known by the Potentates of Asia, but they all sought that August mans alliance; Princesses were offered him together with Principalities: but of all the pourtraitures that were presented to him none pleased him so much as that of the Princess Partenice, and with her he translated and accomplisht a marriage. The conjunction of these two Starrs of the greatest magnitude and splen­dor and of most benigne influence making China all a bright Heaven by their shining in it, made it yet more so by their having ano­ther illustrious Star for their issue, a Son whose birth made his mother's pains sweet, his fathers glories full and the people's joyes alike great and universall. In the publike rejoicing which was made upon this occasion Alcidor who had till then done nothing else [Page 233] but sigh over the fate of Dorame thought him self in duty obliged to be a party. He there­fore induced his soul to dismiss some part of those black thoughts which reigned in it and drest his face in the characters, which it had not a long time worn, of cheerfullness. Which the King and Queen seeing and con­sidering that it was an effect of the interest which he took in their happiness they told him they were his glad debtours for it, and taking the opportunity improved it to cleer his spirit from those thick clouds, with which it was still overcast. Here in there workt with them all of quality that were acquaint­ed with him, and they had the success that they desired; he promised them not to think so much of Tombes for the future but to di­vert himself, and accordingly frequenting the palace, visiting Ladies, and using re­creations, he by little and little chased away his melancholy, it contributing to his re­pose that the Princess Florisa was by the earnest perswasions of her freinds and by the inestimable merit of Eridan wonne to re­ceive him for her husband, and thought her­self happy in him.

It being impossible that a man of worth as Alcidor, destined by the reserves of fate to give of his race to that flourishing empire to [Page 234] which he had given extraordinary remarkes of his valour, should remain allwayes a widower; after he had been a good time so, he saw at a ball a Lady from falling in love with whom he was not able with all his strength to defend himself. Her habit told him she was a Widow and upon enquiry he learnt that she was Widow to Palemon who took Prince Meander prisoner in battle, that she was issued of one of the most an­tient houses of the Kingdome and that she was Mistress of a most plentiful fortune. This he liked very well, but that which captivated him and made his heart hers was that her face exactly resembled Dorame's, that the eyes, the shape, the features, the aire of the one, were the eyes, the shape, the features, the aire of the other. His pas­sion for her rising from this spring grew to a large, deep, and rapid stream, when by getting acquaintance with her, he found she was like Dorame not in body only, but in mind also, that the wit and virtues of the one, were the wit and vertues of the other. Thinking therefore that as often as he saw Florinda he saw Dorame and beleiving that after Dorame, he could not find so meritori­ous an object of his affections as Florinda he staied not long before he addrest himself to [Page 235] her in the quality of a lover, and what with the King's Favouring of his Suite, what with her friends and particularly the discreet Ce­lida her Sister telling her, that to make her­self happy she must take him for her hus­band, what with the affectionate observances which he used towards her, what with the unmatchable accomplishments which she saw in him, she was wonne to admit him in that quality, after she had driven to despair with her coldness many gallant persons who ambitioned the title of her servant, and not only so, but to love him also as much as ever did Florisa; Astasia, Carmelia or Do­rame. Cupid indeed had no reason to be less favourable to him, than Mars, for he had sacrificed upon the Altars of the one, as well as of the other, and that with equal devotion.

During the transaction of these amours as Alcidor was one day returning from the chase, there met him an unknown and in so handsome a fashion requested him to be his Second in a combate which was that hour assigned him, telling him who he was (and he was Periander) and who were of the other part, and what was the ground of the Quarrel that he without any farther ce­remony went along with him. Fighting they [Page 236] killed those with whom they fought, return­ing to Paquin they found themselves to be Cozens, meeting with in a day or two, their action passing about upon the wing of fame, they contented themselves with the elogies that were given them under the safe names of Incognitoes without being so imprudently vain, as to chalenge the interest which they had in them. But Losivel whom they left for dead upon the Feild, being enough ac­quainted with their persons, as well as too much, with their valours, before he died made report of both. Herewith all the Court presently sounded, and it was not long before it came to Florinda. So she gave her lover to understand by the severe re­proof with which he entertained him the next time that he saw him: but the excuses which he made for what he had done, and the promises wherewith he assured her that he would ingage him self no more in such Quarells easily obtained his pardon of her.

Hence Celida took occasion to represent to her Sister that it very much imported her to hasten her marriage with him. Alcidor, alledged she, hath too much of the man in him to turn his back to honor, or to refuse the combate when obliged to it. His [...]irm [Page 237] active and known courage will be continual­ly ready to carry him into dangers, but it may not always bring him safe out of them; for though he is one of the most vali­ant men in the world, he is not immortall, a misfortune may befall him: but when he is your husband, your influences will re­strain him from hazarding his life, and he will preserve himself for love of you, when he would not, for his own sake. Procure therefore as soon as you can this good to him and to yourself.

Florinda, liking and following the coun­sell, by her inflaming forces, and expert management of them bred in Alcidor so eager a thirst of having their marriage spee­ded that it was, before a month was gone by, dispatched. It was celebrated with the presence of the King and Queen and severall Princes and Princesses, and the celebrity went beyond all example; that of his wed­ding with Dorame was excelled by it. And not only the pomp of the latter was more splendid, than that of the former, but the suc­cess also was much better, For Dorame lived with him not one Year, but Florinda many Years; by Dorame he had no Child that sur­vived her, by Florinda he had 3 Sonnes and 2 Daughters, all of them of rare Endowments.

[Page 238] For a long time was Polianis as happy a King, and China as flourishing a Kingdome as any in the World, they had no experience what the troubles of arms meant: but they were at length disturbed by the Indian King, who as if unable to be quiet, but in the in­quietudes of War; And ambitious of meri­ting the title of Conqueror, and uspurper to­gether, beseiged a Town with the people of which, who lived then, and live still in a common wealth, Polianis had a very strict al­liance. His succor therefore being begged by them he caused the drum to beat, the Trumpet to sound and an army to advance, of which that great Captain and Prince Ro­sileon found him self constrained to say that he never saw a braver Nobless or more com­plete Fantassins, and which striking a ter­ror into the enemy, made them fly before them, handled them very much to their dammage in their flight and dissipated them so, that there was no fear left of their re­turn. In this expedition in which all was done, that either the glory of Polianis or the relief, of his allies required, Melicertus being Generall, Alcidor was his Leiftenant Gene­rall and Feild-marshall of all the Cavalry, and the Cheifes and their triumphant re­turn presenting themselves to the King, he [Page 239] pay'd him the second honors, which Melicer­lus was so far from looking upon with an envious eye that he spake of him as if he de­served the first. What wellcome his Flo­rinda gave him is left to them to judge who know how high the pleasure rises when after [...] and afflicting absence the wife [...] safe into her arms the husband [...] [...]he holds as dear, to her as her life.

About this time a tutor was to be pro­vided for Melinta, a Minor who was neice to Alcidor, sole heiress of Orgeries and owner of a beauty and Gentile [...]ess, which inchanted the World, and there appeared Candidates of the Charge severall of her kinred whom (as they pretended at least) not so much a consideration of her great for­tunes as a love of her most amiable qualities made solicitors to get her into their hands. But Alcidor who loved her as his Child and whom she loved as her Father, who af­fectionately desired to have her with him and with whom she earnestly desired to be, who considered that his competitors were less neerely related to her, than he, and of no more exalted quality, prosecuted his de­sire with a courage and prudence answerable to the equity which he had on his side, and was by the consent of those who would have [Page 240] supplanted him settled in the Governement of her, that which he with a most just, wise and tender care discharged, and in the di­scharge improved her uncommon qualifi­cations to a full perfection; She was rec­koned the Grace of the Virgins of that age, and she is esteemed the ornament of the Matrons of this: but Melinta's virtues and worths are far greater, than to be shut up in a little room, an entire Book is necessa­ry for their description.

Peace and the sage care of Polianis having replenisht his Coffers with vast heaps of Money, and the gallantry of his disposition carrying him after the sostenesses of love to the roughnesses of War he determined with himself to make the Barbarians feel the weight and sharpness of his Sword. He armed so puissantly that all the great Masters of the World took notice of it, but which of them all he aimed at, was a mystery which they could by no means discover. China swarmed with Souldiers as banks with pis­mires, the Canon was upon the roade, the Captains had their Rendevous and Alcidor had an imployment amongst them the most glorious that he had ever had. But, oh dire event! the day before the King was to take the Field, as he was busied about the Coro­nation [Page 241] of his Queen, he was in the midle of his capitall City mortally assassinated by one of his subjects. This most detestable blow put all China into out-cries, astonish­ment, desperation and Tears; but no body was deeplyer struck with it, than was Alci­dor. He was hereby defeated of the Vice­roy-ship of Foquiem in which Poli [...]nis had some dayes before told him he would settle him; but this was little or nothing to him; that which affected him was, that his sove­reign was in this horried manner despoiled of life, who was one of the most August Princes that ever swazed Scepter, who gave the Crown of China abundantly more lustre, than he received from it, and who shonne upon him in particular with very benig [...]e rayes of grace and set a high value upon his services. With the thought of this his soul was for some time rendered unable to discharge its functions.

Though furious stirres use to be the con­sequents of the unhappy fall of Monarcks, there happened no such thing upon that of Polianis, the Ministers of state by their in­dustrious prudence preventing all mischeifes that might in probability have arrived. His eldest Sonne Aristenus was without delay or obstruction declared King and Partenice r [...] ­gent [Page 242] during his minority, and some lustres of his reign past in tranquillity as they be­gan; but there is no fair weather which is not attended upon with some foul, and so it proved here. Polidamus successor to A­talant [...]s, who died soon after that the peace was settled between him and Polianis, sent propositions of marriage between himself and the Princess Ariana Sister to Aristenus, and between Aristenus and his Sister the Princess Callirea. About which watches all things being after ripe consultations conclu­ded upon, and preparations made on both sides for the nuptialls, when one would have guess' that every body would have esteemed this double alliance very much conducing to the advantage of China, and when there was most reason to think of peace and rejoycing, there appeared some in armes to stop the current of the Kings prosperity; but not­withstanding these he went with Partenice to receive the wife that was destined him, cau­sing withall an army to follow him by which they were quickly reduced. There was not long between, and there arose another storm of more dangerous consequence; The Prin­ces, as well those of the blood as others, armed against Aristenus, and Aristenus a­gainst the Princes. The King making Ge­nerall [Page 243] of his Army Policaris Uncle to Florin­da, and her husband Alcidor Cleife Marshall of the Camp, this latter having taken leave of his wife, who heartily wi [...]h [...] ill to the au­thors of the Stirres that took her husband from her and carried him into dangers, and being gotten into the Feild, within two dayes journey of Paquin beat up the quar­ters of Prince Porsirus and took his best horses and plate. In sequele of this the two armies approaching one another, he was of the opinion not to let Prince Clorimax pass the river Caromoran but to sight him, and in all probability he had that day done the King very signall service, if his counsell had been followed, but Policaris was of another judg­ment and was to be observed. He notwith­standing shirmisht the enemy so that a great number of them were laid dead upon the place, while the others made their pas­sage.

He after this had order given him to go and receive upon the Frontier of Junia a thousand Fantassins and two thousand Horse that were raised in Brama, and to conduct them to the seige of Molineu; that which having very expeditiously performed he was with the other Cheifes practising to force the Town when intelligence came to [Page 244] the Camp that Poligan was extinguisht. It soon came also to Prince Calistus who de­fended the Town, and it no sooner came to him, but he sent word to the Commanders of the seige that having no other reason to de­part from the King, neither he nor the other Princes and Confederates, but the insolen­cies of that Monster of pride and common enemy of Princes, now that he was removed, he would without any more delay return to him. The punishment indeed which was justly given to that ambitious so changed the posture of affaires that not only Cali [...]lus but also the Princes and Grandees that had ta­ken up arms against the King, laid them down and resumed their obedience to him. Upon this return of peace the Ministers of State considering of dismissing the forces which they had called from foreign soile, some of the principall of them judged it ad­viseable to give the Bramians a grave in Chi­na; which Alcidor hearing as boldly as ge­nerously repirted to it that to cut in peices strangers that came to the assistance of the King was a most hatefull treachery and would be an eternell reproach both the King and Kingdome, and that for his part he was resolved to put himself in the head of them that as he had had the charge of bringing [Page 245] them into a strange Countrey so he might have the glory of carrying them back (or of endeavouring it at the least) to their own, without suffering as much as he was able any dammage to be done them either in bo­dies or goods. This he did, as he said, and had for recompence the particular thankes and Eulogies of the Cheifs (from whom the baseness suggested against them lay not hid) and the general, good word and will of the nation for ever after.

A few weeks passing Partenice under pre­text of being ill dealt with betook herself to armes, and the authors of her doing so endeavoured by promises of extraordinary remunerations and by all other likely arts to draw Alcidor to her party, but he plainely answered that from the instant that he had left the league he had preserved his lozalty intemerate to the great Polianis, and that there were no propositions so advantageous or any thing else so powerfull as to be able to corrupt it to his Son Aristenus. According to what he said, the Queens army being in the Province of Honao and the King advan­cing to sight them though with one much weaker, he advanced with him their Feild-Marschall, and set them in battalia, the King complaining to him that he had not a [Page 246] Prince about him, your faithfull servants, Sir, said he, I have allwayes heart say many name themselves companions of Princes, when it comes to fighting, having taken the right wing and given order for fight, he put himself at the head of the Kings Company of men at armes and charged the adverse Cavalry with a violence which totally routed them, their infantery also at the very instant run­ning the same fortune with them. Upon this success, the glory of which was given to Alcidor, the Queen reconciled herself with her Son who treated her with all the sweetness disireable.

Florinda thought now she should keep Alcidor many lustres with her, but they prov­ed not many months. Those of the new Sect of Religion beginning enterprizes of hostility contrary to their duty in the Pro­vince of Quancy, and the King making an ex­pedition thither to repress them; he, as he was bound attended him, and his attendance was not unserviceable to him, the places which they made their asyles being ve­ry much by his conduct and assistance re­duced.

From Quancy, leaving there sufficient forces, the King past into Honao, and to bridle the revolted which here fortified [Page 247] themselves caused to be raised eight thou­sand Foot and three thousand Horse. Of these he made Alcidor Cheife and command­ed the Governors of the Townes of that flourishing province to furnish him with ar­mes, Canon and other necessaries of War and to obey him as their absolute Com­mander, returning himself to Paquin: And with this strength and power that singular man taking Chianchio for his station so sup­prest and awed the enemies who held Qui­chio and other places, that they durst attempt nothing or scarce look abroad.

He thus following the road of honor, his eldest Son Silvanus generously trod in his Steps and having shewn himself in eminent occasions had the charge given him of the Colours of the Kings Company of men at armes, as had also Belanis that of the Cap­tain of the King's Guards in the room of Palamion who as a partizan of the rebellion was declared guilty of high treason.

The King again after a while leaving Pa­quin with gravid designes of bringing back to their allegiance those who had separated themselves from it and of re-establishing the peace which their separation had broken dispatched orders to Alcidor to come to him to Ancheou with two thousand Foot (sen­ding [Page 248] Arpasax Field-Marshall to command the rest of his army in his absence) and he in observance of them imbarking his men upon the river of Cantao renderd himself with them at the place assigned eight dayes after the King. As soon as he was come the King appointing him to attake one of the suburbs of the Town which had not yet been fallen upon, he lead on his men, over­threw the barricadoes, beat back the defen­ders, made himself Master of the place and there fixt his quarters. Having orders a­gain to beat and sway the Campagne, and while he was executing them with his two elder Sons having notice that three hundred Horse of the Garrison of Holepaou were gone to the seaside to meet a Convoy that was coming to them, he was upon them at the point of day, put them to the rout and seized their equipage and what they came for. Returned to the seige he with the at­takes that he made and other parts of Mar­tialisme that he performed, so intimidated the cheife who had ingaged himself to defend the Town. (He was Ariances Brother to Fi­listen) that he thought himself happy in sur­rendring it upon composition. At the sur­render he by the Kings command set the ar­my in form of battell while the enemy [Page 249] came out of the Town, and a Garrison was placed in it, and after that conducted Ari­ances and his men to two parts of it to de­fend them from being ill used.

After Anchieu there capitulated and yeel­ded Holepaou, forced to it by want of the supplies which Alcidor had deprived them of, and after Holepaou severall other Towns to which the King led his forces.

About this time as Alcidor was coming all alone from a covent of Religious, whither he would have no body accompany him in regard he had business of secrecy as well as importance with one of the Covent, there met him two Gentlemen of the Regiment of the Kings Guards, who accosted him with complaints of an injury which they had received and which they could not poc­ket up, and he very civilly asking them what was the name of him, who had offended him and what the offence, it is yourself, Sir, said one of them, letting him see that he knew him, who have abused us, at the de­livering up of Ancheou, when we would con­trary to your order have gone into the Town, strikeing us with the flat of your Sword. Would you then, replied Alcidor, have sa­tisfaction for this? Though, added he, I might use my eminent charge in armes for [Page 250] my dispensation, I am nevertheless ready to give it you, only let the one off you draw of while I have to do with the other. With those words taking to task the forwardest of them he in a minute had wounded him in the thigh and disarmed him. After which passing the next way to the other, he found him ready in stead of fighting to aske pardon and he freely gave it him. The King after­wards coming to know the business and or­dering the Souldiers to be punisht; he gene­rously procured both their pardons of him. But he withall incurred himself the censure of the other Field-Marshalls who told him, that they would not follow his example in satisfying every one that took things ill from them: To which, you may do as you see good, replied he, but it is a humor which I by narure have, and which I know not how to leave off, never to refuse the combate when it is demanded of me. Not that I ac­quit myself from being reproveable for it, or that I shall not endeavor to moderate it by the directions of reason. Acting so, said Arpasax to him, and not hazarding your life, which is of consequence and ought to be ta­ken care of, upon occasions of frivolous mo­ment, you will be so far from impairing your glory that you will increase it. If you must [Page 251] die by the Sword, it ought to be at the head of an army and in the service of your King who values you more than all his Captains besides. I should consent to what you say, returned Alcidor to him, was I owner of your fortitude and other worths; but since I well know to what degree I am to be consi­dered, pardon me, if I tell you that I place your Elogy of me in the range of flattery. Truth deserves not to be so stiled, said Ar­pasax again, and you would very much in­jure your judgment should you not own the difference between the one and the other. But to make you acknowledge for true that which I have said concerning the account in which his Majesty holds you, I need only put you in mind of the choice which he hath made of you, absolutely and in quality of Generall to command his armyes, and of the many meritorious and inclitous actions which you have atchieved in War, as in your element. You handle me with too much quickness, replied Alcidor to him, and I shall choose rather not to deny what you say, than to contest with you any lon­ger.

Inquenhu, while severall of the Towns that were its companions in mutinying re­verted themselves into the Kings hands, still [Page 252] displaying the ensignes of rebellion, Alcidor was sent thither by him to learn the state of the place and enemy. Returning and repor­ting what he had learnt, he was appointed by a counsell of War to go thither again the next day to observe the places at which they might assault it. As he was doing what he was appointed they of the Town sallied out upon him, but he received them in such a manner that a great part of them never re-entred but remained behind upon the wayes. Two dayes after they set upon the Town in three places, on the right hand the couragious Belican commanding, on the left the judicious Briselin, the middle the Gal­lant Alcidor, and they all bravely performed their parts, but Alcidor with so much ad­vantage that he was the Cheife (if not the sole) cause that the Town was presently de­livered up. Here Aristenus left him to or­der all as he saw good with eight Compa­nies of the regiment of his forein Guards, and as many of that of his Chinoise, but with injunction to be with him within nine dayes at Quichio. Coming hither as he was in­joined, he with Prince Tirenas with so much life attaked the Town that all within trem­bled with feare and lookt upon themselves as at the last gaspe.

[Page 253] During this seige Ermaustain going with all the Cavalry to succor a castle of impor­tance which Filistin and Aigremont had be­seiged, Silvanus who was then sixteen Years old followed him with the Kings Company of men at armes whom he in his Fathers room commanded, and nine hundred of the Horse, when at their arrivall they found the place taken, for the re-taking of it bra­ving the whole army of the enemies, and ha­ving a conflict with them in which they took two of their Canons, he therein did things worthy of Alcidor's Son and which made the Generall in a particular manner admire him. He received in this occasion a wound with a Pistoll-shot, but the Generall taking care of him and making him to do so of himself, he was quickly well of it.

During the same siege of Quichio, Alcidor executing some orders and the enemy ap­pearing, his second Son Dolompus attempted together with others to force a barricade, and venturing so far that the beseiged issued out upon him, after the [...]ight had been for some time very obstinately maintained on both sides, excellently mounted as he was, he in the veiw of more than five hundred Volunteers with a Pistoll-shot killed one of the Officers that commanded at the Barrica­de, [Page 254] which he forced and returned victorious to his Father.

Aristenus after a while upon some weigh [...]ty considerations drawing off his forces from Quichio, Alcidor was left by him with ten thousand men to command as Generall in the Countrey, and the Countrey being thick sown with enemies he had frequent encoun­ters with them, not without making the [...] feel the heavyness of his arm and dread [...] But while he handled them roughly in that part where he was, they were industrious to revenge themselves else where, and their industry prospered so that they surprized a very considerable Town. Advertisement hereof being brought him, and that the castle of it held out still for the King, though it was in the Worst Season of Winter, he sent men to the assistance of the castle who by ladders and cords planted a-long the walls got into it in despight of all opposition, and at the same time went himself and ap­proached the Town with Batteries of Ca­non. These approaches proceeding slow­lier, than he desired, and those of the Town shewing themselves one day in the mazers n [...]r the walls, he with five hundred Gentlemen flew upon them, strawed the ground with their bodies as with rushes and [Page 255] beat them up to the very gate without loos­ing any more than two Gentlemen and a Trumpet that sounded the charge. From this he going on to other executions they who had taken the Town the fourth day af­ter the seige was formed delivered it up to him upon artic'les that were less beneficiall to them, than they imagined.

Though Alcidor had so cooled the hear of the boldest of the revolted in the pro­vince, with which he was intrusted that there durst none of them shew their heads a­gainst him, contrary to the opinion with which they had been imprinted of making such progresses that they should give Laws to them, from whom it was their duty to re­ceive them, and though he had long had an earnest mind to make a visit to his dear Florinda, and she conjured him to do it every time that she wrote to him, yet he durst never give himself and her that satisfaction for fear there should some disorder or mis­cheif fall out in his absence. He stuck close to his charge and with his painful cares and vigilancies renderd himself so for­midable to the adverse party that they fled from the place where they knew he was as from an abode of the plague, so far were they from attaking him or forming parties to [Page 256] surprize him. Nor were they the common Souldiers only that thus dreaded him, but the most renowned [...]ifes also, who shun­ned meeting him all that they were able, as having indeed experimented, that for Alcidor to conquer was no more, than his ordinary practice.

At the beginning of the spring Aristenus, who had past the winter at Paquin, parted from it, to go against Ariances, who, he was assured, contrary to the faith which he had sworn at the rendring up of Ancheou never more to bear arms against him, had a body of men about him towards the Province of Foquiam. He found him in the Iland of Tum­baca where he had shut himself up with an opinion that it was inaccessible; others also had the same thoughts of it: but the King by a kind of miracle discovered a place that was foordable, where no body in the memo­ry of man had past, and passing it fell with so much life upon the enemies that they were almost in a moment cut and broken in pie­ces, and their Canon and Baggage taken, their Commander saving himself by flight. Adorned with the laurells of this victory [...]e laid seige to Chiquiano and within a few dayes took it. Thence he marched afresh towards Quichio; upon the way whither [Page 257] Alcidor meeting him with five hundred Gentlemen, and most of the officers of the army that was under him, he with extraordi­nary caresses thankt him for the notable ser­vices that he had done him in that Coun­trey, and in stead of going to Quichio, as it was beleived he would, went and set down before Quamchieu, giving Alcidor six thou­sand Foot and all the ordinary Cavalry of pay, to fight Filistin, who it was said, would endeavor to succor the Town. But not long after the seige was laid, Prince Meander commanding the Army at Land and Prince Dorilas that at sea, fell out the navall battell of Liampo, in which so superbe a victory was obtained over the forces of the rebells that they were throughout the Kingdome constrained to sue to the King for his grace, that which he according to the usuall sweet­ness of his disposition granted them.

A universall calm recovered, Aristenus visited his Provinces of Canta [...] and Foquiam, but not without taking Alcidor along with him, as he did also in the other little jour­neys, which he made for the good of his affairs.

At their return to Paquin Florinda being ready there to receive her Alcidor they after their long separation, it will easily be believ­ved, [Page 258] met with an unspeakable joy. Having staid a month or two at Court, leaving Sil­vanns there, they retired into the Countrey, having spent half a Year in the Countrey they re-past to the Court. In both places they led a most happy life, happy in regard of the innocent amenities with which the Countrey served them, and of the braver delights, with which the Court entertained them, happy, in regard that in the Coun­trey, they were by the Nobility and Gentry most kindly and civilly respected, by the commonalty little less than superstitiously worshipt, and that at the Court Aristenus and Callirea smiled upon them and made much of them as the principal ornaments of their royall state, happy, in regard that their Children were by all esteemed as rare examples, their eldest Sons Silvanus and Dolompus (the latter of which his Father had sent to Mongul) of most genuine cou­rage and address, their youngest Son Li­diam of most pregnant hopes, their two Daughters Delsi [...]a and Serapis of most charm­ing beauty, wit and virtue! But cheif­ly happy in regard of the reciprocation of e [...]tire love between themselves, the exact consort of their humors and wills, and the liberty which they had of a mutual fruition, [Page 259] that which was agreeable to the one being so to the other, and though they had been married many Years, as pathetick dearnes­ses continually passing between them, as if they had not been joyned together a month.

Together with Alcidor and Florinda (though scarce by the same measure with them) the Court also was happy, it was wholly a theatre of gallantries: War and the things that affright and molest were scarce so much as mentioned, all the di­scourse was of love, of the chase, of dan­ces, of feasts, of all the more elegant re­creations of humane life. There indeed spread a felicity over all the Kingdome, Hea­ven blessing it with a serene tranquillity and an exuberancy of good things. But the tran­quillity was at length disturbed, the workers of the past tempests raising new ones; Liam­po forgetful of the mercy which the King had shewed it when at the next door to ruine renewed its old factions, and the Isle of Varella was powerfully and sharply assaul­ted by the Japonoises. Aftertaind of this the King, who armed with speed, to prevent the mischeif with which he beleived the Isle of Chapasi threatened, commanded Alcidor to put himself into it, and it was in an in­stant [Page 260] that he had set foot on ground there with a great number of Gentlemen, who rec­koned it a fair glory to fight under his co­lours.

To help him make good his charge, there was quickly sent to him by the diligence of the admirable Orestes eight thousand Foot and fifteen hundred Horse, and with these aids he so well disposed the Iland to a de­fence, that the Japonoises coming three dayes after to view it, found it too well for­tified and managed, to be assaulted. After this the King seeing that the designe of Cal­limorus was wholly set to force the Ile of Varella, caused a good part of Alcidors forc­es to be joyned with others and make a de­scent thither, and the success was that they compelled the Japonoises with great loss to retire to their ships.

Callimorus being gone (Ariances who came with him fled also back with him to take re­fuge at Meaco) Alcidor who had not as yet stirred from Chapasi was orderd by the King to go Feild-marshall to the seige of Liampo. He was again upon intelligence that Ro [...]ilus had forces in the Feild which he intended to put into Liampo, or else to divert the siege with them, ordered by him with eight hun­dred Horse to go seek him out and sight [Page 261] him; and taking with him Silvanus and Do­lompus (the latter of which, the newes of the arming had brought from Mongul, where he had been dangerously wounded at the siege of Teudac,) he made his course, but could no where meet with them that he loo­ked for.

Returned to the Kings quarters he had past but few dayes there before he received the newes of the sickness, and within a few houres after of the death of Florinda, newes which filled his great heart as full of greif as it could possible hold and not break, and which put his two Sonnes all in sadness. He had Condolers of his unhappiness the King and all of his acquaintance, and, when seeing the change of his habit they had learnt the cause of it, the whole army, the King withal together with others his freinds read­ing lectures to him of patience and com­fort. He had indeed for arguments of quie­ting himself, that she was fallen into a sleep for which it was below a soul of true cou­rage to torment it self, and from which all his Stock of Tears and sighes could not a­waken her, that the Queen and Court had taken all the care and pains about her, not only, which humanity, but which also a zea­lous tenderness could suggest, and that he [Page 262] had neither himself nor any other to com­plain of for his not seeing her in her sick­ness, the first moment that she fell ill a Cur [...]ier being dispatched to him with notice of it, and she dying within six hours after, of which also he had as quick a messenger. But after all he had an earnest mind to throw aside his charge and arms and go weep over her: that which stop him from doing it was a just consideration that his so­vereign had present need of his service and demanded it, and that therefore to leave him would be to incurre an opprobry from which he should never be able to clear him­self. Let us wait therefore, said he to himself, to go pay our last duties to that part of our dear Florinda that remaines, till this rebellious City, which is at the even of its being subdued, be fully so. It is not now the first time that we have received an infelicity of this kind, we have too well learnt the sad usage of resenting a wife's death to forget it, and shall we make less resi­stance against the oppressions of affliction now, than heretofore when our spirit had more of impurity, than now by the advan­tage of age it hath? The exercise of Tears is to be left to women, we have reason to shew ourselves more constant. And besides [Page 263] into what region is Florinda gone that we should do nothing but lament for her? Is she in an abode that is inaccessible to us? Is she not there, where all faithfull souls have a place reserved for them, and where it is not long before we shall see her again? Let us forbear then to sigh over her state of bliss, and resume the temper which we had before the loss of her, that so we may the better imploy ourselves as our duty and ne­cessity require in things importing to the speedy reduction of the enemy. This resolu­tion tooke and followed Alcidor, and by his advice and example his Sonnes also, very much to the satisfaction of the King in regard both of the benefit which thereby they would receive themselves, and of that also which would accrew from it to his own affairs.

The Japonoises having a good mind to suc­cour Liampo, but in regard of the invincible obstacles that stood in their way contenting themselves to appear upon the sea and re­tire, the beseiged though they had thereby their hopes frustrated continued obstinately enough to defend themselves; but at length great numbers of them being destroyed by the arms of the besiegers, and greater by sickness and famine, so that the Town made [Page 264] hast to be desert of inhabitants, they were ne­cessitated to beg the Kings mercy, and what they necessarily begged, he freely in­dulged. Having mastered this City, which three Kings his predecessours could not do, and re-establisht there the old Religion of China, he returned in triumph to Paquin; and thither Alcidor waited upon him, and then applied himself to perform the supreme honours to Florinda. When he came to see her body in the Coffin, he was wholly pos­sest with greif, and his sentiments were more equitable, than to be blamed: but his reason after a while making good its empire and tempering his passion, his Cheif care was taken up about her funerals, and he laid her in the grave with a State in which Mourning was renderd full of Majesty.

While the King continued at Paquin Al­cidor was always about him, and new oc­casions calling him abroad, he and his Sons attended him. They were of his Cheife assi­stants when he forced his way through the barricades and other obstacles that shut it up, and dissipated those that opposed it, re­leived Baiador that was straightly beseiged upon the Prince Nimesis, and constrained Al­cippus who had caused this trouble to sue to him for peace.

[Page 265] Affairs being quieted on that side, Ariste­nus left Clomedon there with sufficient forces to maintain the quiet, and past into the Pro­vince of Quiechen in quest of Filistin who with great numbers of men ravaged the Countrey; but though this Prince was the grand Cheife of the disobedient party, and had the boldness to counter-act the Kings au­thority, he durst no where appear before him. In this expedition Tocichu was begirt by the King, taken by assault and put all in blood. At this seige Dolompus was wounded with a Musquet-shot in the head together with other little hurts, while his elder Bro­ther had better fortune, though he continually engaged himself in most hazardous services.

Taking warning by Tocichu, Hilani opened its gates to the King: Hilani leading the way several other Townes returned to their allegiance, Filistin giving them the salutary counsel to do so, who himself also recounted his disloialty and obtained pardon of the King both for himself, and all the party of which he had been head and protector. Things being brought to this issue, the King returned to Paquin, leaving the great Orestes and Alcidor to receive the Townes to the obedience that they owed him and to cause their fortifications to be razed: and they [Page 266] were not long before they were again with him with an account of their negotiation which perfectly satisfied him.

Envious of the Universal peace which China now enjoyed, and resolved as it seems to shew himself, what he was reputed to be, the most inconstant Prince in the World Alcippus performed nothing of what he had promised Aristenus when he made peace with him, but by fresh and those un­sufferable provocations obliged him to re­commence War. Orestes past the mountains with fourty thousand men, took Chaquoam in the sight of Alcastus and put that flitting prince in such a fright that he staied no lon­ger before he repented of what he had done. Aristenus himself also in the sequele marched with a great army into Camboia; Alcidor who was Field-marshall of it led the Van when they entred the Countrey and finding Prince Eusebes retiring with his Army was earnest to have bid them battle: but what­soever clear day he saw of utterly defea­ting them, and whatsoever assurance he gave the King of it, he could not get his consent that he might fall on, he would reserve, he said, his forces to make himself Master of all the places of strength in Camboia, and to out their Prince in his Shirt. But it could not [Page 267] well be that the two Armies should meet without striking a blow, Alcidor moved the Quarel, prefaced with some skirmishes, made a loose, broke into the midst of the e­nemies, strawed the ground with five hun­dred of their bodies and retreated gloriously, the King approving the exploit though not agreeing to the attempt. At length the whole conduct of the Army in Camboia was left to him, and he beseiged Townes and took them by the measure of quickly bringing under the whole State.

Daiador in the mean time the most consi­derable place of its Countrey was vigo­rously beseiged by the Indians who resolved to take it or dye, if they were not hindered by a greater strength, than theirs, and in all appearance they had not long to stay to be possest of it, so low had they brought it. Thither therefore Aristenus with all speed caused thirty thousand men to advance under three of his most experienced Captains, and they with Sword in one hand and Pistol in the other bravely set it at liberty. Never received Alcastus such an affront, and he was the more sensible of it because he received it in his native Countrey. To see indeed him­self and his army proudly triumpht over by the Chinoises while they forced them dis­gracefully [Page 268] to dislodge from before the Town about which they lay encampt waiting only the hour in which according to the compo­sition that was made, they were to enter; It was a displeasure which he was so far from being able to digest that he endured not to survive it, but within a few dayes after mar­ched off the World. Bajador releived the In­dian King, and the Potentates that sided with him were constraind to make a peace with Aristenus upon conditions advantageous e­nough to him to declare him Victour in the War. The Castles, Townes, places which upon these conditions he delivered back to Alcippus were all monuments of Alcidors vir­tue that had conquerd them. Indeed to com­bate the enemy in their own Countrey and vanquish them, to inviron Townes and take them, to assault Places and win them, by all the methods of valour to render for­midable the arms of the just Aristenus were his ordinary exercises (both at other times and) while he had the care of the War a­gainst Alcippus.

But the labours of this extraordinary man must have an end; they are glorious enough for him, they have drest his name with flowers of honour which will never wither, the grand Cheifes of the World discourse [Page 269] of him with elogies of praise which posterity will with publicke voice transmit to the end of time, and Aristenus regards him as one whose Sword hath strucke as many impor­tant blowes in his service as any's whosoe­ver, and whose merit might plead title to as rich rewards. In answer to his merit he re­solves to settle him in the Viceroy-ship which Polianis a few dayes before his death designed him: But as he is about to do it he is called to arms by the Province of Or­gones for the Chastising of that Felonious. The leading of this War is committed to Alcidor; but when he should take the Field, he falls sick. It is at first a heavy surcharge of trouble to him besides that of his sickness that he is hindered from waiting upon his Master and gathering the rose which is at the end of the thorn. But when he findes by the course of his disease that he can in all likelyhood have none but a fatall issue of it, he looks upon those former thoughts as no longer sea­sonable, he wholly applies himself to think of his retreate, the honours of the World he with a holy elevation of mind contemnes, and hath his desires grow cold to every thing else, but to go and enjoy a purity of happiness with his Dorame and Florinda. In fine seeing his end at hand he with most [Page 270] sage remonstrances incites his Children to follow the way of virtue and glory, and then composes himself with a pious cou­rage to undergo the assaults of death which he feels beginning upon him, and which within a quarter of an hour dislodge his heroick soul.

The End of the fourth and last Book.
FINIS.

THE KEY.

  • ALcidor
  • Astasia
  • Carmelia
  • Felisbea
  • Feonice
  • Orastes, Duke of Guise.
  • Podavius, Duke of Remours.
  • Trasilas, Charles the 9th. of France.
  • Florimen, Henry the 3d. of France.
  • Polianis, Henry the 4th. of France.
  • Aristenus, Lewis the 13th. of France.
  • Agenora Margareth Daughter to Henry the 2d.
  • Partenice Mary of Medicis daughter to Fran­cis Duke of Florence.
  • Atalantus, Philip the 3d. of Spain.
  • Polidamus, Philip the 4th. of Spain.
  • Ariana, Isabella eldest Daughter to Henry the 4th.
  • Dorilas, Duke of Guise.
  • Dorame, Widow of the Count of Aventiers.
  • Florinda, Widow of the Count du Pay de Fon.
  • Meander, Count of Soisons.
  • Dolimbus, Cardinal of Bourbon.
  • [Page] Arcantus, Duke of Alenzon.
  • Lucimon, Duke of Maienne.
  • Ostravius, Duke of Parma.
  • Lisantus, Admiral de Villers.
  • Periander, Baron de la Ko [...]he des Aubiers.
  • Clorimax, Prince of Conde.
  • Calistus, Duke of Maienne.
  • Palamion, Baron de la Force.
  • Belanis, Count de Hallier.
  • Arpasax, Marquess de Vignoles.
  • Belican, Baron de Terme.
  • Briselin, Count Zamet.
  • Tirenus, Duke de Cheurease.
  • Filistin, Duke de Rohan.
  • Alcippus, Duke de Savoy.
  • Eusebes, Prince Thomas.
  • Orgones, Duke de Loraine.
  • Silarmin, Arkduke Albert.
  • Orestes, Cardinal Richleiu.
  • Callimorus.

This keyboarded and encoded edition of the work described above is co-owned by the institutions providing financial support to the Text Creation Partnership. This Phase I text is available for reuse, according to the terms of Creative Commons 0 1.0 Universal. The text can be copied, modified, distributed and performed, even for commercial purposes, all without asking permission.