Ivanhoe

 
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Act 3 Scene 3

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The Preceptory of the Templars. A funeral pile. A crowd of common folk kept back by Temple servants. The TEMPLARS enter in order singing. REBECCA is led in with them. Among them is BRIAN, silent and pale, armed but without his helmet.

TEMPLARS:
Fremuere principes,
Irruere turbidi:
In hoc Templo una spes,
Una salus Domini!
Nobis sit victoria,
Nostro Templo gloria,
Gloria Sancto nomini!

Cordibus ac mentibus
Proni veneramur te:
Salus esto gentibus
In hoc Templo, Domine!
Nobis sit victoria,
Nostro Templo gloria,
Gloria sancto nomine!

When the TEMPLARS have taken their seats, their GRAND MASTER remains standing.

A Templar
 
A Templar
(Caravaggio)
GRAND MASTER:
Thou Jewish girl, who art condemned to die
For practice of thy vile unholy arts
Against a noble Christian knight, attend.
Thou didst demand a champion, and our Order
Erring perchance, as 'tis most meet to err,
In mercy, heard thy prayer;
Wherefore we named our tried and valiant brother,
Brian, the knight of whom thou art accused,
To meet thy champion, should a champion come.
But now the hours decline, and sinks the sun
As sinks thy life. The hour of doom is near.
Repent and free thy soul! Confess thy crime.

REBECCA:
I am innocent.
Now, if God will, even in this last dark hour
He will appoint a champion.
But if no champion come, I bow
Before His holy will, and am content to die.

GRAND MASTER:
Sound trumpets!

A flourish of trumpets, then a pause.

Now since no champion makes answer here,
Draw near and bind the maiden to the stake;
For surely she shall die.

As the Servants approach REBECCA, BRIAN comes quickly down.

BRIAN:
It shall not be.
Fools! Dotards! Will ye slay the innocent?
Butchers and burners!
She is mine, I say; I say she shall not burn.

GRAND MASTER:
What need of further proof? The witchcraft works
Even in his lips, and breeds their blasphemy.
Take her and bind her to the stake.

BRIAN: (to Servants)
Back! as you hope to live!
(To REBECCA) Swear to be mine, and I will save thee now.
My horse is nigh at hand, Zamor my horse
Who never failed me yet; and he will bear thee
To life and love. One word, and thou shalt live!

REBECCA: (in prayer)
Oh Jehovah,
Guard, oh guard me!

BRIAN covers his face and turns aside. REBECCA offers her hands to the Servants. They bind her to the stake. They are about to fire the pile, when there is a movement in the crowd, and a great shout.

Rebecca
 
Marguerite Macintyre
as Rebecca
 
VOICES:
A champion! A champion! A champion!

Through the crowd comes IVANHOE on foot,
pale, dusty, with drawn sword.

IVANHOE:
Forbear, forbear!
I come, her champion, ere set of sun,
Wilfred of Ivanhoe.

CHORUS:
A champion! A champion! A champion!

REBECCA:
He is weak and wounded,
He must not fight for me!
Oh! as you hope for mercy at the last,
Forbid the combat!

BRIAN:
This is the man you love!
Now is the hour,
Death-hour for him or me.
Look to thy life, thou wretch of Ivanhoe!

He attacks IVANHOE with fury. The GRAND MASTER rises as if to stop the combat, but stands gazing. Enter KING RICHARD, CEDRIC, ROWENA, ISAAC, and others. IVANHOE gives ground, fighting desperately. He is beaten to his knee. BRIAN swings his sword for a last blow, then drops his point and stands. A silence; then BRIAN falls. IVANHOE goes to him, wondering, and kneels beside him.

IVANHOE:
Dead! He is dead!

CHORUS:
A judgment! A judgment!
The evil passions warring in his soul
Have rent him like the seven fiends of Hell:
Bow down before the judgment of the Lord!

They unbind REBECCA. She moves towards IVANHOE, but stops as he goes towards ROWENA. ISAAC goes timidly and touches the hand of REBECCA, who is gazing at IVANHOE and ROWENA. At his touch, she turns and takes his hand in hers.

KING:
I charge thee, Conrad, Master of the Temple,
On whose foul sport we have intruded here,
Up and begone, thou and thy trait'rous knights,
And at your peril shame our coasts no more.

GRAND MASTER:
And dost thou banish me?

TEMPLARS:
The Temple stands above the wrath of Kings!
We will appeal to Rome!

KING:
Appeal! Appeal!
But if I find thee yet on English ground,
I will so harry thee, thou foreign knight,
That thou shalt have no voice to plead in Rome.
See where the banner of England floats afar
Above thy Temple pennants!

The Royal banner of England is raised.

ENSEMBLE.

TEMPLARS: REBECCA: IVANHOE:
Wide as the world our Temple stands,
To mock the might of kings, Our Temple
To mock the might of kings, was not made with hands,
But high as Heav'n it springs.
Hail, O love,
TEMPLARS:REBECCA:ROWENA, IVANHOE, CEDRIC, KING & CHORUS:
Wide as the world the Temple stands, High as Heav'n it springs O love that holds the world in fee
Stands to mock the might of kings. And strongest knights in thrall,
To mock the might of kings, Our Temple Our hymn we raise to thee,
The might of kings, to mock, was not made with hands And hail thee Lord of all,
To mock the might of kings. But high as Heav'n it springs, And hail thee Lord of all,
Might of kings, High as Heav'n, Lord of all,
Might of kings! High as Heav'n! Lord of all!
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Page created 10 October 2003