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Titus Andronicus - Act 5, scene 3
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Navigate this workTitus Andronicus - Act 5, scene 3
Act 5, scene 3
At the feast, Titus serves the pie made from the bodies of Chiron and Demetrius. He then stabs Lavinia, reveals the actions and the fate of Tamora’s sons, and stabs Tamora. Saturninus kills Titus and Lucius kills Saturninus. Marcus and Lucius address the Romans, recounting the horrors perpetrated by Tamora and Aaron. Lucius is hailed as the new emperor. Aaron is condemned to a dreadful death, and Titus is mourned by Marcus, Lucius, and Young Lucius.Enter Lucius, Marcus, and the Goths, ⌜with Aaron,
Guards, and an Attendant carrying the baby.⌝
2367 Uncle Marcus, since ’tis my father’s mind
2368 That I repair to Rome, I am content.
2369 And ours with thine, befall what fortune will.
2370 Good uncle, take you in this barbarous Moor,
2371 5 This ravenous tiger, this accursèd devil.
2372 Let him receive no sust’nance. Fetter him
p. 1932373 Till he be brought unto the Empress’ face
2374 For testimony of her foul proceedings.
2375 And see the ambush of our friends be strong.
2376 10 I fear the Emperor means no good to us.
2377 Some devil whisper curses in my ear
2378 And prompt me that my tongue may utter forth
2379 The venomous malice of my swelling heart.
2380 Away, inhuman dog, unhallowed slave!—
2381 15 Sirs, help our uncle to convey him in.
2382 The trumpets show the Emperor is at hand.
⌜Guards and Aaron exit.⌝
Enter Emperor ⌜Saturninus⌝ and Empress ⌜Tamora⌝
with ⌜Aemilius,⌝ Tribunes, ⌜Attendants,⌝ and others.
2383 What, hath the firmament more suns than one?
2384 What boots it thee to call thyself a sun?
2385 Rome’s emperor, and nephew, break the parle.
2386 20 These quarrels must be quietly debated.
2387 The feast is ready which the careful Titus
2388 Hath ordained to an honorable end,
2389 For peace, for love, for league and good to Rome.
2390 Please you therefore draw nigh and take your places.
SATURNINUS 2391 25Marcus, we will.
Trumpets sounding, enter Titus like a cook, placing the
dishes, ⌜with young Lucius and others,⌝ and Lavinia
with a veil over her face.
2392 Welcome, my lord;—welcome, dread queen;—
2393 Welcome, you warlike Goths;—welcome, Lucius;—
p. 1952394 And welcome, all. Although the cheer be poor,
2395 ’Twill fill your stomachs. Please you eat of it.
⌜They begin to eat.⌝
2396 30 Why art thou thus attired, Andronicus?
2397 Because I would be sure to have all well
2398 To entertain your Highness and your empress.
2399 We are beholding to you, good Andronicus.
2400 An if your Highness knew my heart, you were.—
2401 35 My lord the Emperor, resolve me this:
2402 Was it well done of rash Virginius
2403 To slay his daughter with his own right hand
2404 Because she was enforced, stained, and deflowered?
SATURNINUS 2405 It was, Andronicus.
TITUS 2406 40Your reason, mighty lord?
2407 Because the girl should not survive her shame,
2408 And by her presence still renew his sorrows.
2409 A reason mighty, strong, and effectual;
2410 A pattern, precedent, and lively warrant
2411 45 For me, most wretched, to perform the like.
2412 Die, die, Lavinia, and thy shame with thee,
2413 And with thy shame thy father’s sorrow die.
⌜He kills Lavinia.⌝
2414 What hast thou done, unnatural and unkind?
2415 Killed her for whom my tears have made me blind.
2416 50 I am as woeful as Virginius was,
2417 And have a thousand times more cause than he
2418 To do this outrage, and it now is done.
2419 What, was she ravished? Tell who did the deed.
2420 Will ’t please you eat?—Will ’t please your Highness
2421 55 feed?
2422 Why hast thou slain thine only daughter thus?
2423 Not I; ’twas Chiron and Demetrius.
2424 They ravished her and cut away her tongue,
2425 And they, ’twas they, that did her all this wrong.
2426 60 Go fetch them hither to us presently.
2427 Why, there they are, both bakèd in this pie,
2428 Whereof their mother daintily hath fed,
2429 Eating the flesh that she herself hath bred.
2430 ’Tis true, ’tis true! Witness my knife’s sharp point.
He stabs the Empress.
2431 65 Die, frantic wretch, for this accursèd deed.
⌜He kills Titus.⌝
2432 Can the son’s eye behold his father bleed?
⌜He kills Saturninus.⌝
2433 There’s meed for meed, death for a deadly deed.
⌜A great tumult. Lucius, Marcus, and
others go aloft to the upper stage.⌝
2434 You sad-faced men, people and sons of Rome,
2435 By uproars severed as a flight of fowl
2436 70 Scattered by winds and high tempestuous gusts,
2437 O, let me teach you how to knit again
2438 This scattered corn into one mutual sheaf,
2439 These broken limbs again into one body,
2440 ⌜Lest⌝ Rome herself be bane unto herself,
2441 75 And she whom mighty kingdoms curtsy to,
p. 1992442 Like a forlorn and desperate castaway,
2443 Do shameful execution on herself.
2444 But if my frosty signs and chaps of age,
2445 Grave witnesses of true experience,
2446 80 Cannot induce you to attend my words,
⌜He turns to Lucius.⌝
2447 Speak, Rome’s dear friend, as erst our ancestor,
2448 When with his solemn tongue he did discourse
2449 To lovesick Dido’s sad-attending ear
2450 The story of that baleful burning night
2451 85 When subtle Greeks surprised King Priam’s Troy.
2452 Tell us what Sinon hath bewitched our ears,
2453 Or who hath brought the fatal engine in
2454 That gives our Troy, our Rome, the civil wound.—
2455 My heart is not compact of flint nor steel,
2456 90 Nor can I utter all our bitter grief,
2457 But floods of tears will drown my oratory
2458 And break my utterance even in the time
2459 When it should move you to attend me most
2460 And force you to commiseration.
2461 95 Here’s Rome’s young captain. Let him tell the tale,
2462 While I stand by and weep to hear him speak.
2463 Then, gracious auditory, be it known to you
2464 That Chiron and the damned Demetrius
2465 Were they that murderèd our emperor’s brother,
2466 100 And they it were that ravishèd our sister.
2467 For their fell faults our brothers were beheaded,
2468 Our father’s tears despised, and basely cozened
2469 Of that true hand that fought Rome’s quarrel out
2470 And sent her enemies unto the grave;
2471 105 Lastly, myself unkindly banishèd,
2472 The gates shut on me, and turned weeping out
2473 To beg relief among Rome’s enemies,
2474 Who drowned their enmity in my true tears
2475 And oped their arms to embrace me as a friend.
p. 2012476 110 I am the turned-forth, be it known to you,
2477 That have preserved her welfare in my blood
2478 And from her bosom took the enemy’s point,
2479 Sheathing the steel in my advent’rous body.
2480 Alas, you know I am no vaunter, I;
2481 115 My scars can witness, dumb although they are,
2482 That my report is just and full of truth.
2483 But soft, methinks I do digress too much,
2484 Citing my worthless praise. O, pardon me,
2485 For when no friends are by, men praise themselves.
2486 120 Now is my turn to speak. Behold the child.
2487 Of this was Tamora deliverèd,
2488 The issue of an irreligious Moor,
2489 Chief architect and plotter of these woes.
2490 The villain is alive in Titus’ house,
2491 125 And as he is to witness, this is true.
2492 Now judge what ⌜cause⌝ had Titus to revenge
2493 These wrongs unspeakable, past patience,
2494 Or more than any living man could bear.
2495 Now have you heard the truth. What say you,
2496 130 Romans?
2497 Have we done aught amiss? Show us wherein,
2498 And from the place where you behold us pleading,
2499 The poor remainder of Andronici
2500 Will, hand in hand, all headlong hurl ourselves,
2501 135 And on the ragged stones beat forth our souls,
2502 And make a mutual closure of our house.
2503 Speak, Romans, speak, and if you say we shall,
2504 Lo, hand in hand, Lucius and I will fall.
2505 Come, come, thou reverend man of Rome,
2506 140 And bring our emperor gently in thy hand,
2507 Lucius our emperor, for well I know
2508 The common voice do cry it shall be so.
2509 Lucius, all hail, Rome’s royal emperor!
MARCUS, ⌜to Attendants⌝
2510 Go, go into old Titus’ sorrowful house,
2511 145 And hither hale that misbelieving Moor
2512 To be ⌜adjudged⌝ some direful slaught’ring death
2513 As punishment for his most wicked life.
⌜Attendants exit. Lucius and Marcus
come down from the upper stage.⌝
2514 Lucius, all hail, Rome’s gracious governor!
2515 Thanks, gentle Romans. May I govern so
2516 150 To heal Rome’s harms and wipe away her woe!
2517 But, gentle people, give me aim awhile,
2518 For nature puts me to a heavy task.
2519 Stand all aloof, but, uncle, draw you near
2520 To shed obsequious tears upon this trunk.
⌜He kisses Titus.⌝
2521 155 O, take this warm kiss on thy pale cold lips,
2522 These sorrowful drops upon thy ⌜bloodstained⌝ face,
2523 The last true duties of thy noble son.
2524 Tear for tear, and loving kiss for kiss,
2525 Thy brother Marcus tenders on thy lips.
⌜He kisses Titus.⌝
2526 160 O, were the sum of these that I should pay
2527 Countless and infinite, yet would I pay them.
LUCIUS, ⌜to Young Lucius⌝
2528 Come hither, boy. Come, come, and learn of us
2529 To melt in showers. Thy grandsire loved thee well.
2530 Many a time he danced thee on his knee,
2531 165 Sung thee asleep, his loving breast thy pillow;
2532 Many a story hath he told to thee,
2533 And bid thee bear his pretty tales in mind
2534 And talk of them when he was dead and gone.
2535 How many thousand times hath these poor lips,
2536 170 When they were living, warmed themselves on thine!
2537 O, now, sweet boy, give them their latest kiss.
2538 Bid him farewell; commit him to the grave.
2539 Do them that kindness, and take leave of them.
2540 O grandsire, grandsire, ev’n with all my heart
2541 175 Would I were dead so you did live again!
⌜He kisses Titus.⌝
2542 O Lord, I cannot speak to him for weeping.
2543 My tears will choke me if I ope my mouth.
⌜Enter Aaron with Guards.⌝
2544 You sad Andronici, have done with woes.
2545 Give sentence on this execrable wretch
2546 180 That hath been breeder of these dire events.
2547 Set him breast-deep in earth and famish him.
2548 There let him stand and rave and cry for food.
2549 If anyone relieves or pities him,
2550 For the offense he dies. This is our doom.
2551 185 Some stay to see him fastened in the earth.
2552 Ah, why should wrath be mute and fury dumb?
2553 I am no baby, I, that with base prayers
2554 I should repent the evils I have done.
2555 Ten thousand worse than ever yet I did
2556 190 Would I perform, if I might have my will.
2557 If one good deed in all my life I did,
2558 I do repent it from my very soul.
⌜Aaron is led off by Guards.⌝
2559 Some loving friends convey the Emperor hence,
2560 And give him burial in his fathers’ grave.
p. 2072561 195 My father and Lavinia shall forthwith
2562 Be closèd in our household’s monument.
2563 As for that ravenous tiger, Tamora,
2564 No funeral rite, nor man in mourning weed;
2565 No mournful bell shall ring her burial;
2566 200 But throw her forth to beasts and birds to prey.
2567 Her life was beastly and devoid of pity,
2568 And being dead, let birds on her take pity.
They exit, ⌜carrying the dead bodies.⌝