Auerbach's Cellar in Leipzig
 

A Drinking Party

FROSCH

No drinking? Naught a laugh to raise?
None of your gloomy looks, I pray!
You, who so bright were wont to blaze,
Are dull as wetted straw to-day.

BRANDER

'Tis all your fault; your part you do not bear,
No beastliness, no folly.

FROSCH
(pours a glass of wine over his head)

There,
You have them both!

BRANDER

You double beast!

FROSCH

'Tis what you ask'd me for, at least!

SIEBEL

Whoever quarrels, turn him out!
With open throat drink, roar, and shout.
Hollo! Hollo! Ho!

ALTMAYER

Zounds, fellow, cease your deaf'ning cheers!
Bring cotton-wool! He splits my ears.

SIEBEL

'Tis when the roof rings back the tone,
Then first the full power of the bass is known.

FROSCH

Right! out with him who takes offence!
A! tara lara da!

ALTMAYER

A! tara lara da!

FROSCH

Our throats are tuned. Come let's commence!

(Sings)
The holy Roman empire now,
How holds it still together?

BRANDER

An ugly song! a song political!
A song offensive! Thank God, every morn
To rule the Roman empire, that you were not born!
I bless my stars at least that mine is not
Either a kaiser's or a chancellor's lot.
Yet 'mong ourselves should one still lord it o'er the rest;
That we elect a pope I now suggest.
Ye know, what quality ensures
A man's success, his rise secures.

Faoscn (sings)
Bear, lady nightingale above,
Ten thousand greetings to my love.

SIESEL

No greetings to a sweetheart!
No love-songs shall there be!

FROSCH

Love-greetings and love-kisses! Thou shalt not hinder me!

(Sings)
Undo the bolt! in silly night,
Undo the bolt! the lover wakes.
Shut to the bolt! when morning breaks,

SIEBEL

Ay, sing, sing on, praise her with all, thy might!!
My turn to laugh will come some day.
Me hath she jilted once, you the same trick she'll play.
Some gnome her lover be! where cross-roads meet,
With her to play the fool; or old he-goat,
From Blocksberg coming in swift gallop, bleat
A good night to her, from his hairy throat!
A proper lad of genuine flesh and blood,
Is for the damsel far too good;
The greeting she shall have from me,
To smash her window-panes will be!

BRANDER (striking on the table)

Silence! Attend! to me give ear!
Confess, sirs, I know how to live:
Some love-sick folk are sitting here!
Hence, 'tis but fit, their hearts to cheer,
That I a good-night strain to them should give.
Hark! of the newest fashion is my song!
Strike boldly in the chorus, clear and strong!

(He sings)
Once in a cellar lived a rat,
He feasted there on butter,
Until his paunch became as fat
As that of Doctor Luther,
The cook laid poison for the guest,
Then was his heart with pangs oppress'd,
As if his frame love wasted.

Chorus (shouting)
As if his frame love wasted.

BRANDER

He ran around, he ran abroad,
Of every puddle drinking.
The house with rage he scratcli'd and gnaw'd,
In vain,--he fast was Sinking;
Full many an anguish'd bound he gave,
Nothing the hapless brute could save,
As if his frame love wasttd.

CHORUS

As if his frame love wasted.

BRANDER

By torture driven, in open day,
The kitchen he invaded,
Convulsed upon the hearth he lay,
With anguish sorely jaded;
The poisoner laugh'd, Ha! ha! quoth she,
His life is ebbing fast, I see,
As if his frame love wasted.

CHORUS

As if his frame love wasted.

SIEBEL

How the dull boors exulting shout!
Poison for the poor rats to strew
A fine exploit it is no doubt.

BRANDER

They, as it seems, stand well with you!

ALTMAYER

Old bald-pate! with the paunch profound!
The rat's mishap hath tamed his nature;
For he his counterpart bath found
Depicted in the swollen creature.

FAUST AND MEPHISTOPHELES

MEPHISTOPHELES

I now must introduce to you
Before aught else, this jovial crew,
To show how lightly life may glide away;
With the folk here each day's a holiday.
With little wit and much content,

Each on his owu small round intent,
Like sportive kitten with its tail;
While no sick-headache they bewail,
And while their host will credit give,
Joyous and free from care they live.

BRANDER

They're off a journey, that is clear,--
From their strange manners; they have scarce been here
An hour.

FROSCH

You're right! Leipzig's the place for me
'Tis quite a little Paris; people there
Acquire a certain easy finish'd air.

SIEBEL

What take you now these travellers to be?

FROSCH

Let me alone! O'er a full glass you'll see,
As easily I'll worm their secret out,
As draw an infant's tooth. I've not a doubt
That my two gentlemen are nobly born,
They look dissatisfied and full of scorn.

BRANDER

They are but mountebanks, I'll lay a bet!

ALTMAYER

Most like.

FROSCH

Mark me, I'll screw it from them yet!

MEPHISTOPHELES (to FAUST)

These fellows would not scent the devil out,
E'en though he had them by the very throat I

FAUST

SIEBEL

Thanks for your fair salute.
(Aside, glancing at MEPHISTOPHELES.)
How! goes the fellow on a halting foot?

MEPHISTOPHELES

Is it permitted here with you to sit?
Then though good wine is not forthcoming here,
Good company at least our hearts will cheer.

ALTMAYER

A dainty gentleman, no doubt of it.

FROSCH

You're doubtless recently from Rippach? Pray,
Did you with Master Hans there chance to sup?

MEPHISTOPHELES

To-day we pass'd him, but we did not stop!
When last we met him he had much to say
Touching his cousins, and to each he sent
Full many a greeting and kind compliment.
(With an inclination towards FROSCH.)

ALTMAYER (aside to FROSCH)

You have it there!

SIEBEL

Faith! he's a knowing one!

FROSCH

Have patience! I will show him up anon!

MEPHISTOPHELES

We heard erewhile, unless I'm wrong,
Voices well trained in chorus pealing?
Certes, most choicely here must song
Re-echo from this vaulted ceiling!

FROSCH

That you're an amateur one plainly sees!

MEPHISTOPHELES

Oh no, though strong the love, I cannot boast much skilL

ALTMAYER

Give us a song!

MEPHISTOPHELES

As many as you will.

SIEBEL

But be it a brand new one, if you please I

MEPHISTOPHELES

But recently returned from Spain are we,
The pleasant land of wine and minstrelsy.

(Sings)
A king there was once reigning,
Who had agoodly flea--

FROSCH

Hark! did you rightly catch the words? a flea!
An odd sort of a guest he needs must be.

MEPHISTOPHELES (sings)

A king there was once reigning,
Who had a goodly flea,
Him loved he without feigning,
As his own son were he!
His tailor then he summon'd,
The tailor to him goes:
Now measure me the youngster
For jerkin and for hose!

BRANDER

Take proper heed, the tailor strictly charge,
The nicest measurement to take,
And as he loves his head, to make
The hose quite smooth and not too large!

MEPHISTOPHELES

In satin and in velvet,
Behold the yonker dressed;
Bedizen'd o'er with ribbons,
A cross upon his breast.
Prime minister they made him,
He wore a star of state;
And all his poor relations
Were courtiers, rich and great.

The gentlemen and ladies
At court were sore distressed;
The queen and all her maidens
Were bitten by the pest,
And yet they dared not scratch them,
Or chase the fleas away.
If we are bit, we catch them,
And crack without delay.

CHORUS (shouting)

If we are bit, &c.

FROSCH

Bravo! That's the song for me!

SIEBEL

Such be the fate of every flea!

BRANDER

With Clever finger carch and Kill!

ALTMAYER

Hurrah for wine and freedom still I

MEPHISTOPHELES

Were but your wine a trifle better, friend,
A glass to freedom I would gladly drain.

SIEBEL

You'd better not repeat those words again t

MEPHISTOPHELES

I am afraid the landlord to offend;
Else freely I would treat each worthy guest
From our own cellar to the very best.

SIEBEL

Out with it then! Your doings I'll defend.

FROSCH

Give a good glass, and straight we'll praise you, one and all.
Only let not your samples he too small;
For if my judgment you desire,
Certes, an ample mouthful I require.

ALTMAYER (aside)

I guess they're from the Rhenish land.

MEPHISTOPHELES

Fetch me a gimlet here!

BRANDER

Say, what therewith to bore?
You cannot have the wine-casks at the door?

ALTMAYER

Our landlord's tool-basket behind doth yonder stand.

MEPHISTOPHELES (takes the gimlet)

(To FROSCH)

Now only say! what liquor will you take?

FROSCH

How mean you that? have you of every sort?

MEPHISTOPHELES

Each may his own selection make.

ALTMAYER (to FROSCH)

Ha! Ha! You lick your lips already at the thought.

FROSCH

Good, if I have my choice, the Rhenish I propose;
For still the fairest gifts the fatherland bestows.

MEPHISTOPHELES

(boring a hole in the edge of the table opposite to where FROSCH
is sitting)

Give me a little wax--and make some stoppers--quick!

ALTMAYER

Why, this is nothing but a juggler's trick I

MEPHISTOPHELES (to BRANDER)

And you?

BRANDER

Champagne's the wine for me;
Right brisk, and sparkling let it be!

(MEPHISTOPHELES bores; one of the party has in the meantime
prepared the wax-stoppers and stopped the holes.)

BRANDER

What foreign is one always can't decline,
What's good is often scatter'd far apart.
The French your genuine German hates with all his heart,
Yet has a relish for their wine.

SIEBEI.

(as MEPHISTOPHELES approaches him)

I like not acid wine, I must allow,
Give me a glass of genuine sweet!

MEPHISTOPHELES (bores)

Tokay
Shall, if you wish it, flow without delay.

ALTMAYER

Come! look me in the face! no fooling now!
You are but making fun of us, I trow.

MEPHISTOPHELES

Ah! ah! that would indeed be making free
With such distinguished guests. Come, no delay;
What liquor can I serve you with, I pray ?

ALTMAYER

Only be quick, it matters not to me.
(After the holes are bored and stopped.)

MEPHISTOPHELES (with strange gestures)

Grapes the vine-stock bears,
Horns the buck-goat wears!
Wine is sap, the vine is wood,
The wooden board yields wine as good.
With a deeper glance and true
The mysteries of nature view!
Have faith and here's a miracle!
Your stoppers draw and drink your fill!

ALL.

(as they draw the stoppers and the wine chosen by each runs into
his glass)
Oh beauteous spring, which flows so far!

MEPHISTOPHELES

Spill not a single drop, of this beware! (They drink repeatedly.)

ALL (sing)

Happy as cannibals are we,
Or as five hundred swine.

MEPHISTOPHELES

They're in their glory, mark their elevation!

FAUST

Let's hence, nor here our stay prolong.

MEPHISTOPHELES

Attend, of brutishness ere long
You'll see a glorious revelation.

SIEBEL

(drinks carelessly; the wine is spilt upon the ground, and turns to
flame)
Help! fire! help! Hell is burning!

MEPHISTOPHELES

(addressing the flames)

Stop,
Kind element, be still, I say!

(To the Company.)

SIEBEL

What means the knave! For this you'll dearly pay!
Us, it appears, you do not know.

FROSCH

Such tricks a second time he'd better show!

ALTMAYER

Methinks 'twere well we pack'd him quietly away.

SIEBEL

What, sir! with us your hocus-pocus play!

MEPHISTOPHELES

Silence, old wine-cask!

SIEBEL

How! add insult, too!
Vile broomstick!

BRANDER

Hold, or blows shall rain on you!

ALTMAYER

(draws a stopper out of the table; fire springs out against him)
I burn! I burn!

SIEBEL

'Tis sorcery, I vow!
Strike home! The fellow is fair game, I trow!
(They draw their knives and attack MEPHISTOPHELES.)

MEPHISTOPHELES (with solemn gestures)

Visionary scenes appear!
Words delusive cheat the ear! Be ye there, and be ye here!
(They stand amazed and gaze at each other.)

ALTMAYER

Where am I? What a beauteous land!

FROSCH

Vineyards! unless my sight deceives?

SIEBEL

And clust'ring grapes too, close at hand!

BRANDER

And underneath the spreading leaves,
What stems there be! What grapes I see!
(He seilses SIEBEL by the nose.
The others reciprocally do the same, and raise their knives.)

MEPHISTOPHELES (as above)

Delusion, from their eyes the bandage take!
Note how the devil loves a jest to break!
(He disappears with FAUST; the fellows draw back from one
another.)

SIEBEL

What was it?

ALTMAYER

How?

FROSCH

Was that your nose?

BRANDER (to SIEBEL)

And look, my hand doth thine enclose I

ALTMAYER

I felt a shock, it went through every limb!
A chair! I'm fainting! All things swim!

FROSCH

Say what has happened, what's it all about?

SIEBEL

Where is the fellow? Could I scent him out,
His body from his soul I'd soon divide!

ALTMAYER

With my own eyes, upon a cask astride,
Forth through the cellar-door I saw him ride--
Heavy as lead my feet are growing.
(Turning to the table.)
I wonder is the wine still flowing!

SIEBEL

'Twas all delusion, cheat and lie.

FROSCH

'Twas wine I drank, most certainly.

BRANDER

But with the grapes how was it, pray?

ALTMAYER

That none may miracles believe, who now will say?

WITCHES' KITCHEN

A large caidron hangs over the fire on a low hearth; various figures appear in the vapour rising from it. A FEMALE MONKEY sits beside the caidron to skim it, and watch that it does not boil over. The MALE MONKEY with the young ones is seated near, warming himself. The walls and ceiling are adorned with the strangest articles of witch-furniture.

FAUST, MEPHISTOPHELES

FAUST

This senseless, juggling witchcraft I detest!
Dost promise that in this foul nest
Of madness, I shall be restored?
Must I seek counsel from an ancient dame?
And can she, by these rites abhorred,
Take thirty winters from my frame?
Woe's me, if thou naught better canst suggest I
Hope has already fled my breast.
Has neither nature nor a noble mind
A balsam yet devis'd of any kind?

MEPHISTOPHELES

My friend, you now speak sensibly. In truth,
Nature a method giveth to renew thy youth:
But in another book the lesson's writ;--
It forms a curious chapter, I admit.

FAUST

I fain would know it.

MEPHISTOPHELES

Good! A remedy
Without physician, gold, or sorcery:
Away forthwith, and to the fields repair,
Begin to delve, to cultivate the ground,
Thy senses and thyself confine
Within the very narrowest round,
Support thyself upon the simplest fare,
Live like a very brute the brutes among,
Neither esteem it robbery
The acre thou dost reap, thyself to dung;
This is the best method, credit me,
Again at eighty to grow hale and young.

FAUST

I am not used to it, nor can myself degrade
So far, as in my hand to take the spade.
This narrow life would suit me not at all.

MEPHISTOPHELES

Then we the witch must summon after all.

FAUST

Will none but this old beldame do?
Canst not thyself the potion brew?

MEPHISTOPHELES

A pretty play our leisure to beguile!
A thousand bridges I could build meanwhile.
Not science only and consummate art,
Patience must also bear her part.
A quiet spirit worketh whole years long;
Time only makes the subtle ferment strong.
And all things that belong thereto,
Are wondrous and exceeding rare!
The devil taught her, it is true;
But yet the draught the devil can't prepare.
(Perceiving the beasts.)
Look yonder, what a dainty pair!
Here is the maid! the knave is there!
(To the beasts)
It seems your dame is not at home?

THE MONKEYS

Gone to carouse,
Out of the house,
Thro' the chimney and away!

MEPHISTOPHELES

How long is it her wont to roam?

THE MONKEYS

While we can warm our paws she'll stay.

MEPHISTOPHELES (to FAUST)

What think you of the charming creature?

FAUST

I loathe alike their form and features!

MEPHISTOPHELES

Nay, such discourse, be it confessed,
Is just the thing that pleases me the beSt.

(To the MONKEYS)

Tell me, ye wIleips, accursed crew!
What Stir ye in the broth about?

MONKEYS

Coarse beggar's gruel here we stew.

MEPHISTOPHELES

Of customers you'll have a rout.

THE HE-MONKEY
(approaching and fawning on MEPHISTOPHELES)

Quick! quick! throw the dice,
Make me rich in a trice,
Oh give me the prize!
Alas, for myself!
Had I plenty of pelf,
I then should be wise.

MEPHISTOPHELES

How blest the ape would think himself, if he
Could only put into the lottery!

(In the meantime the young MONKEYS have been playing with a
large globe, which they roll forwards)

THE HE-MONKEY

The world behold;
Unceasingly roll'd,
It riseth and falleth ever;
It ringeth like glass!
How brittle, alas!
'Tis hollow, and resteth never.
How bright the sphere,
Still brighter here!
Now living am I!
Dear son, beware!
Nor venture there!
Thou too must die!
It is of clay;
'Twill crumble away;
There fragnients lie.

MEPHISTOPHELES

Of what use is the sieve?

THE HE-MONKEY (taking it dozen)

The sieve would show,
If thou wert a thief or no?
(He runs to the SHE-MONKEY, and makes her look through it.)
Look through the sieve!
Dost know him the thief,
And dar'st thou not call him so?

MEPHISTOPHELES (approaching the fire)

And then this pot?

THE MONKEYS

The half-witted sot!
He knows not the pot!
He knows not the kettle!

MEPHISTOPHELES

Unmannerly beast!
Be civil at least!

TIlE HE-MONKEY

Take the whisk and sit down in the settle!
(He makes MEPHISTOPHELES sit down.)

FAUST

(who all this time has been standing before a looking-glass, now approaching, and now retiring from it)

What do I see? what form, whose charms transcend
The loveliness of earth, is mirror'd here!
O Love, to waft me to her sphere,
To me the swiftest of thy pinions lend!
Alas! If I remain not rooted to this place,
If to approach more near I'm fondly lur'd,
Her image fades, in veiling mist obscur'd
Model of beauty both in form and face!
Is't possible? Hath woman charms so rare?
In this recumbent form, supremely fair,
The essence must I see of heavenly grace?
Can aught so exquisite on earth be found?

MEPHISTOPHELES

The six days' labour of a god, my friend,
Who doth himself cry bravo, at the end,
By something clever doubtless should be crown'd.
For this time gaze your fill, and when you please
Junt such a prize for you I can provide;
How blest is he to whom kind fate decrees,
To take her to his home, a lovely bride!

(FAUST continues to gaze into the mirror. MEPHISTOPHELES stretching himself on the settle and playing with the whisk, continues to speak.)

Here sit I, like a king upon his throne;
My sceptre this ;--the crown I want alone.

THE MONKEYS

(who have hitherto been making all sorts of strange gestures, bring
MEPHISTOPHELES a crown, with loud cries)

Oh, be so good,
With Sweat and with blood
The crown to lime!

(They handle the crown awkwardly and break it in two
pieces, with which they skip about.)

'Twas fate's decree!
We speak and see!
We hear and rhyme.

FAUST (before the mirror)

Woe's me! well-nigh distraught I feel!

MEPHISTOPHELES
(pointing to the beasts)

And even my own head almost begins to reel.

THE MONKEYS

If good luck attend,
If fitly things blend,
Our jargon with thought
And with reason is fraught!

FAUST (as above)

A flame is kindled in my breast!
Let us begone! nor linger here!

MEPHISTOPHELES
(in the same position)

It now at least must be confessed,
That poets sometimes are sincere.

begins to boil over; a great flame arises, which streams up the chimney. The WITCH comes down the chimney with horrible cries.)

THE WITCH

Ough! ough! ough! ough!
Accursed brute! accursed SOW!
The caidron dost neglect, for shame!
Accursed brute to scorch the dame!

(Perceiving FAUST and MEPHISTOPHELES)

Whom have we here?
Who's sneaking here?
Whence are ye come?
With what desire?
The plague of fire
Your bones consume!

(She dips the skimming-ladle into the caidron and throws flames at FAUST, MEPHISTOPHELES, and the MONKEYS. The MONKEYS whimper.)

MEPHISTOPHELES
(twirling the whisk which he holds in his hand, and striking among
the glasses and pots)

Dash! Smash!
There lies the glass!
There lies the slime!
'Tis but a jest;
I but keep time,
Thou hellish pest,
To thine own chime!

(While the WITCH steps back in rage aind astonishment.)

Dost know me! Skeleton! Vile scarecrow, thou!
Thy lord and master dost thou know?
What holds me, that I deal not now
Thee and thine apes a stunning blow ?
No more respect to my red vest dost pay?
Does my cock's feather no allegiance claim?
Have I my visage masked to-day?
Must I be forced myself to name?

THE WITCH

Master, forgive this rude salute!
But I perceive no cloven foot.
And your two ravens, where are they?

MEPHISTOPHELES

This once I must admit your plea ;--
For truly I must own that we
Each other have not seen for many a day.
The culture, too, that shapes the world, at last
Hath e'en the devil in its sphere embraced;
The northern phantom from the scene hath pass'd,
Tail, talons, horns, are nowhere to be traced!
As for the foot, with which I can't dispense,
'Twould injure me in company, and hence,
Like many a youthful cavalier,
False calves I now have worn for many a year.

THE WITCH (dancing)

I am beside myself with joy,
To see once more the gallant Satan here
!
MEPHISTOPHELES

Woman, no more that name employ!

THE WITCH

But why? what mischief hath it done?

MEPHISTOPHELES

To fable-books it now doth appertain;
But people from the change have nothing won.
Rid of the evil one, the evil ones remain.
Lord Baron call thou me, so is the matter good;
Of other cavaliers the mien I wear.
Dost make no question of my gentle blood;
See here, this is the scutcheon that I bear!
(He makes an unseemly gesture.)

THE WITCH
(laughing immoderately)

Ha! Ha Just like yourself! You are, I ween,
The same mad wag that you have ever been!

MEPHISTOPHELES (to FAUST)

My friend, learn this to understand, I pray!
To deal with witches this is still the way.

THE WITCH

Now tell me, gentlemen, what you desire?

MEPHISTOPHELES

Of your known juice a goblet we require.
But for the very oldest let me ask;
Double its strength with years doth grow.

THE WITCH

Most willingly! And here I have a flask,
From which I've sipp'd myself ere now;
What's more, it doth no longer stink;
To you a glass I joyfully will give.
(Aside.)

If unprepar'd, however, this man drink,
He hath not, as you know, an hour to live.

MEPHISTOPHELES

He's my good friend, with whom 'twill prosper well;
I grudge him not the choicest of thy store.
Now draw thy circle, speak thy spell,
And straight a bumper for him pour!

(The WITCH, with extraordinary gestures, describes a circle, and places strange things within it. The glasses meanwhile begin to ring, the caidron to sound, and to make music. Lastly, she brings a great book; places the MONKEYS in the circle to serve her as a desk, and to hold the torches. She beckons FAUST to approach.)

FAUST (to MEPHISTOPHELES)

Tell me, to what doth all this tend?
Where will these frantic gestures end?
This loathsome cheat, this senseless stuff
I've known and hated long enough.

MEPHISTOPHELES

Mere mummery, a laugh to raise!
Pray don't be so fastidious! She
But as a leech, her hocus-pocus plays,
That well with you her potion may agree.
(He compels FAUST to enter the circle.)

(The WITCH, with great emphasis, begins to declaim the book.)

This must thou ken:
Of one make ten,
Pass two, and then
Make square the three,
So rich thou'lt be.
Drop out the four!
From five and six,
Thus says the witch,
Make seven and eight.
So all is straight!
And nine is one,
And ten is none,
This is the witch's one-time-one!

FAUST

The hag doth as in fever rave.

MEPHISTOPHELES

To these will follow many a stave.
I know it well, so rings the book throughout;
Much time I've lost in puzzling o'er its pages,
For downright paradox, no doubt,
A mystery remains alike to fools and sages.
Ancient the art and modern too, my friend.
'Tis still the fashion as it used to be,
Error instead of truth abroad to send
By means of three and one, and one and three.
'Tis ever taught and babbled in the schools.
Who'd take the trouble to dispute with fools?
When words men hear, in sooth, they usually believe.
That there must needs therein be something to conceive.

THE WITCH (continues)

The lofty power
Of wisdom's dower,
From all the world conceal'd!
Who thinketh not,
To him I wot,
Unsought it is reveal'd.

FAUST

What nonsense doth the hag propound?
My brain it doth well-nigh confound.
A hundred thousand fools or more,
Methinks I hear in chorus roar.

MEPHISTOPHELES

Incomparable Sibyl cease, I pray!
Hand us thy liquor without more delay.
And to the very brim the goblet crown!
My friend he is, and need not be afraid;
Besides, he is a man of many a grade,
Who bath drunk deep already.

(The WITCH, with many ceremonies, pours the liquor into a cup;
as FAUST lifts it to his mouth, a light flame arises.)

MEPHISTOPHELES

Gulp it down!
No hesitation! It will prove
A cordial, and your heart inspire!
What! with the devil hand and glove,
And yet shrink back afraid of fire?

(The WITCH dissolves the circle. FAUST steps Out.)

MEPHISTOPHELES

Now forth at once! thou dar'st not rest.

WITCH

And much, sir, may the liquor profit you!

MEPHISTOPHELES (to the WITCH)

And if to pleasure thee I aught can do,
Pray on Walpurgis mention thy request.

WITCH

Here is a song, sung o'er, sometimes you'll see,
That 'twill a singular effect produce.

MEPIIISTOPHELES (to FAUST)

Come, quick, and let thyself be led by me;
Thou must perspire, in order that the juice
Thy frame may penetrate through every part.
Then noble idleness I thee will teach to prize,
And soon with ecstasy thou'lt recognise
How Cupid stirs and gambols in thy heart.

FAUST

Let me but gaze one moment in the glass!
Too lovely was that female form!

MEPHISTOPHELES

Nay! nay!

A model which all women shall surpass,
In flesh and blood ere long thou shalt survey.
As works the draught, thou presently shalt greet
A Helen in each woman thou dost meet.

A STREET

FAUST (MARGARET passing by)

FAUST

Fair lady, may I thus make free
To offer you my arm and company?

MARGARET

I am no lady, am not fair,
Can without escort home repair.
(She disengages herself and exit.)

FAUST

By heaven! This girl is fair indeed!
No form like hers can I recall.
Virtue she hath, and modest heed,
Is piquant too, and sharp withal.
Her cheek's soft light, her rosy lips,
No length of time will e'er eclipse!
Her downward glance in passing by,
Deep in my heart is stamp'd for aye;
How curt and sharp her answer too,
To ecstasy the feeling grew!

(MEPHISTOPHZLES enters.)

FAUST

This girl must win for me! Dost hear?

MEPHISTOPHELES

Which?

FAUST

She who but now passed.

MEPHISTOPHELES

She from confession coineth here,
From every sin absolved and free;
I crept near the confessor's chair.
All innocence her virgin soul,
For next to nothing went she there;
O'er such as she I've no control!

FAUST

She's past fourteen.

MEPHISTOPHELES

You really talk
Like any gay Lothario,
Who every floweret from its stalk
Would pluck, and deems nor grace, nor truth,
Secure against his arts, forsooth!
This ne'er the less won't always do.

FAUST

Sir Moralizer, prithee, pause;
Nor plague me with your tiresome laws!
To cut the matter short, my friend,
She must this very night be mine,--
And if to help me you decline,
Midnight shall see our compact end.

MEPHISTOPHELES

What may occur just bear in mind!
A fortnight's space, at least, I need,
A fit occasion but to find.

FAUST

With but Seven hours I could succeed;
Nor should I want the devil's wile,
So young a creature to beguile.

MEPHISTOPHELES

Like any Frenchman now you speak,
But do not fret, I pray; why seek
To hurry to enjoyment straight?
The pleasure is not half so great,
As when at first around, above,
With all the fooleries of love,
The puppet you can knead and mould
As in Italian story oft is told.

FAUST

No such incentives do I need.

MEPH ISTOPIIELES

But now, without offence or jest!
You cannot quickly, I protest,
In winning this sweet child succeed.
By storm we cannot take the fort,
To stratagem we must resort.

FAUST

Conduct me to her place of rest!
Some token of the angel bring!
A kerchief from her snowy breast,
A garter bring me,--any thing!

MEPHISTOPHELES

That I my anxious zeal may prove,
Your pangs to sooth and aid your love,
A single moment will we not delay,
Will lead you to her room this very day.

FAUST

And shall I see her ?--Have her?

MEPHISTOPHELES

No!
She to a neighbour's house will go;
But in her atmosphere alone,
The tedious hours meanwhile you may employ,
In blissful dreams of future joy.

FAUST

Can we go now?

MEPHISTOPHELES

'Tis yet too soon.

FAUST

Some present for my love procure!
(Exit.)

MEPHISTOPHELES

Presents so soon! 'tis well! success is sure!
Full many a goodly place I know,
And treasures buried long ago;
I must a bit o'erlook them now.
(Exit.)

EVENING. A SMALL AND NEAT ROOM

MARGARET
(braiding and binding up her hair)

I would give something now to know,
Who yonder gentleman could be!
He had a gallant air, I trow,
And doubtless was of high degree:
That written on his brow was seen--
Nor else would lie so bold have been.
(Exit.)

MEPHISTOPHELES

Come in! tread softly! be discreet!

FAUST (after a pause)

Begone and leave me, I entreat!

MEPHISTOPHELES (looking round)

Not every maiden is so neat.

FAUST (gazing round)

Welcome sweet twilight, calm and blest,
That in this hallow'd precinct reigns!
Fond yearning love, inspire my breast,
Feeding on hope's sweet dew thy blissful pains!
What stillness here environs me!
Content and order brood around.
What fulness in this poverty!
In this small cell what bliss profound!
(He throws himself on the leather arm-chair beside
the bed.)

Receive me thou, who hast in thine embrace,
Welcom'd in joy and grief the ages flown!
How oft the children of a by-gone race
Have cluster'd round this patriarchal throne!
Haply she, also, whom I hold so dear,
For Christmas gift, with grateful joy possess'd,
Hath with the full round cheek of childhood, here,
Her grandsire's wither'd hand devoutly press'd.
Maiden! I feel thy spirit haunt the place,
Breathing of order and abounding grace.
As with a mother's voice it prompteth thee,
The pure white cover o'er the board to spread,
To strew the crisping sand beneath thy tread.
Dear hand! so godlike in its ministry!
The hut becomes a paradise through thee!
And here
(He raises the bed-curtain.)
How thrills my pulse with strange delight!
Here could I linger hours untold;
Thou, Nature, didst in vision bright,
The embryo angel here unfold.
Here lay the child, her bosom warm
With life; while steeped in slumber's dew,
To perfect grace, her godlike form,
With pure and hallow'd weavings grew!

And thou! ah here what seekest thou?
How quails mine inmost being now!
What wouldst thou here? what makes thy heart so sore?
Unhappy Faust! I know thee now no more.

Do I a magic atmosphere inhale?
Erewhile, my passion would not brook delay!
Now in a pure love-dream I melt away.
Are we the sport of every passing gale?

Should she return and enter now,
How wouldst thou rue thy guilty flame!
Proud vaunter--thou wouldst hide thy brow,--
And at her feet sink down with shame.

MEPHISTOPHELES

Quick! quick! below I see her there.

FAUST

Away! I will return no more!

MEPHISTOPHELES

Here is a casket, with a store
Of jewels, which I got elsewhere.
Just lay it in the press; make haste!
I swear to you, 'twill turn her brain;
Therein some trifles I have placed,
Wherewith another to obtain.
But child is child, and play is play.

FAUST

I know not--shall I?

MEPHISTOPHELES

Do you ask?
Perchance you would retain the treasure?
If such your wish, why then, I say,
Henceforth absolve me from my task,
Nor longer waste your hours of leisure.
I trust you're not by avarice led!
I rub my hands, I scratch my head,--
(He places the casket in the press and closes the lock,)
Now quick! Away!
That soon the sweet young creature may
The wish and purpose of your heart obey;
Yct stand you there
As would you to the lecture-room repair,
As if before you stood,
Arrayed in flesh and blood,
Physics and metaphysics weird and grey !--
Away! (Exeunt.)

MARGARET (with a lamp)

Here 'tis so close, so sultry now,
(She opens the window.)
Yet out of doors 'tis not so warm.
I feel so strange, I know not how--
I wish my mother would come home.
Through me there runs a shuddering--
I'm but a foolish timid thing!
(While undressing herself she begins to sing.)

There was a king in Thule,
True even to the grave;
To whom his dying mistress
A golden beaker gave.

At every feast he drained it,
Naught was to him so dear,
And often as he drained it,
Gush'd from his eyes the tear.

When death came, unrepining
His cities o'er he told;
All to his heir resigning,
Except his cup of gold.

With many a knightly vassal
At a royal feast sat he,
In yon proud ball ancestral,
In his castle o'er the sea.

Up stood the jovial monarch,
And quaff'd his last life's glow,
Then hurled the hallow'd goblet
Into the flood below.

He saw it splashing, drinking,
And plunging hi the sea;
His eyes meanwhile were sinking,
And never again drank he.
(She opens the press to put away her clothes, and perceives the
casket.)

How comes this lovely casket here? The press
I locked, of that I'm confident.
'Tis very wonderful! What's in it I can't guess;
Perhaps 'twas brought by some one in distress.
And left in pledge for loan my mother lent.
Here by a ribbon hangs a little key!
I have a mind to open it and see!
Heavens! only look! what have we here!
In all my days ne'er saw I such a sight!
Jewels! which any noble dame might wear,
For some high pageant richly dight!
This chain--how would it look on me!
These splendid gems, whose may they be?
(She puts them on and steps before the glass.)

Were but the ear-rings only mine!
Thus one has quite another air.
What hoots it to be young and fair?
It doubtless may be very flue;
But then, alas, none cares for you,
And praise sounds half like pity too.
Gold all doth lure,
Gold doth secure
All things. Alas, we poor!

PROMENADE

FAUST walking thoughtfully up and down. To him
MEPHISTOPHELES

MEPHISTOPIIELES

By all rejected love! By hellish fire I curse,
Would I knew aught to make my imprecation worse!

FAUST

What aileth thee? what chafes thee now so sore?
A face like that I never saw before!

MEPHISTOPHELES

I'd yield me to the devil instantly,
Did it not happen that myself am he!

FAUST

There must be some disorder in thy wit!
To rave thus like a madman, is it fit?

MEPHISTOPHELES

Think! only think! The gems for Gretchen brought,
Them hath a priest now made his own !--
A glimpse of them the mother caught,
And 'gan with secret fear to groan.
The woman's scent is keen enough;
Doth ever in the prayer-book snuff;
Smells every article to ascertain
Whether the thing is holy or profane,
And scented in the jewels rare,
That there was not much blessing there.
"My child," she cries, "ill-gotten good
Ensnares the soul, consumes the blood;
With them we'll deck our Lady's shrine,
She'll cheer our souls with bread divine!"
At this poor Gretchen 'gan to pout;
'Tis a gift-horse, at least, she thought,
And sure, he godless cannot be,
Who brought them here so cleverly.
Straight for a priest the mother sent,
Who, when he understood the jest,
With what he saw was well content.
"This shows a pious mind!" Quoth he:
"Self-conquest is true victory.
The Church bath a good stomach, she, with zest,
Whole countries hath swallow'd down,
And never yet a surfeit known.
The Church alone, be it confessed,
Daughters, can ill-got wealth digest."

FAUST

It is a general custom, too.
Practised alike by king and jew.

MEPHISTOPHELES

With that, clasp, chain, and ring, he swept
As they were mushrooms; and the casket,
Without one word of thanks, he kept,
As if of nuts it were a basket.
Promised reward in heaven, then forth he hied--
And greatly they were edified.

FAUST

And Gretchen!

MEPHISTOPHELES

In unquiet mood
Knows neither what she would or should;
The trinkets night and day thinks o'er,
On him who brought them, dwells still more.

FAUST

The darling's sorrow grieves me, bring
Another set without delay!
The first, methinks, was no great thing.

MEPHISTOPHELES

All's to my gentleman child's play!

FAUST

Plan all things to achieve my end!
Engage the attention of her friend!
No milk-and-water devil be,
And bring fresh jewels instantly!

MEPHISTOPHELES

Ay, sir! Most gladly I'll obey.
(FAUST exit.)

MEPHISTOPHELES

Your doting love-sick fool, with ease,
Merely his lady-love to please,
Sun, moon, and stars in sport would puff away.
(Exit.)