A monologue from the play by Lord Byron

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  • NOTE: This monologue is reprinted from Lord Byron: Six Plays. Lord Byron. Los Angeles: Black Box Press, 2007.
  • EVE: Hear, Jehovah!
    May the eternal Serpent's curse be on him!
    For he was fitter for his seed than ours.
    May all his days be desolate!
    He hath left thee no brother, Adah—
    Zillah no husband—me no son! for thus
    I curse him from my sight for evermore!
    All bonds I break between us, as he broke
    That of his nature, in yon—Oh Death! Death!
    Why didst thou not take me, who first incurred thee?
    Why dost thou not so now?

    [Pointing to CAIN.]

    Why dost thou not take yon Incarnate Spirit
    Of Death, whom I have brought upon the earth
    To strew it with the dead. May all the curses
    Of life be on him! and his agonies
    Drive him forth o'er the wilderness, like us
    From Eden, till his children do by him
    As he did by his brother! May the swords
    And wings of fiery Cherubim pursue him
    By day and night—snakes spring up in his path—
    Earth's fruits be ashes in his mouth—the leaves
    On which he lays his head to sleep be strewed
    With scorpions! May his dreams be of his victim!
    His waking a continual dread of Death!
    May the clear rivers turn to blood as he
    Stoops down to stain them with his raging lip!
    May every element shun or change to him!
    May he live in the pangs which others die with!
    And Death itself wax something worse than Death
    To him who first acquainted him with man!
    Hence, fratricide! henceforth that word is Cain,
    Through all the coming myriads of mankind,
    Who shall abhor thee, though thou wert their sire!
    May the grass wither from thy feet! the woods
    Deny thee shelter! earth a home! the dust—
    A grave! the sun his light! and heaven her God!