Rossetti Archive Textual Transcription

Document Title: The Slave (holograph manuscript)
Author: Dante Gabriel Rossetti
Date of Composition: 1835
Type of Manuscript: holograph fair copy
Scribe: DGR

The full Rossetti Archive record for this transcribed document is available.

Image of page [loose] page: [loose]
Note: This small note by WMR is laid into the inside front cover of the booklet.
The slave was composed

& written out by Gabriel

at some such age as 6—I

don't think he can have been

7—all the other matter

in the booklet appears to

be his.

W.M.R 1905
Image of page [endpaper] page: [endpaper]
Manuscript Addition: &c.
Editorial Description: scripted at upper right
Manuscript Addition: [indecipherable]
Editorial Description: apparently two words
Transcription Gap: 1-2 (leaf torn out)
Image of page 3 page: 3
The Slave!!!
Editorial Note (page ornament):
Note: The entry beginning “Guards” appears inside a rectangular shape with an ornate double border, apparently designed to appear as a kind of embossed plaque.
Note: A vertical line divides the character names and the titles that follow into two columns. Each column ends with a series of progressively shorter centered horizontal lines.


  • Don Manuel. A Spanish Lord.
  • Traitor. an Officer.
  • Slave. A Servant to Traitor
  • Mortimer. an English knight.
  • Guards Messengers &c.
Scene, Manuel's palace.
Image of page 4 page: 4
Traitor Solus

Ho Slave give me

my sword! Enter

Slave. Sl. Here is

your sword. Tr. Slave

villain thou shalt

die! Sl. O my lord have

mercy! Tr. I will not

slave! Slave falls on

his knees. Sl. Down

with |thy sword!

Tr. Slave thou diest!

Exeunt fighting.

Image of page 5 page: 5
ReEnter Slave

with a bloody

sword. Sl. I have

wounded him!

ho if thou be est

alive. Come out

and fight me! Enter

Traitor. Tr. down

Slave I dare thee

on Coward thou

diest! they fight

Tr. Slave! Exeunt.
Image of page 6 page: 6
Note: The final letter in the first line is obscured in the gutter.
Editorial Description: There is a small superscript circle following the final letter of “lord” in line 5.
Don Manuel solus

Ma. Villains com[e]

out to battle ho I

say! Enter Soldiers.

1 st So. My lord.?

2 nd. So. your grace?

Tr. fight Cowards

fight! Sol. Draw

draw! Exeunt

dr awing their swords.
Transcription Gap: 7-8 (leaf torn out)
Image of page 9 page: 9
Act II d. Scene the I st.

Enter the Traitor, with a

drawing sword in his hand.

Tr. Slave, come out!

Enter Slave.

Sl. I dare thee! no

I do not—Enter Man-

uel, With Soldiers.

Ma. on soldiers here's

the Traitor! So fight

fight! Tr. down Soldier!

Ma. Coward! Exeunt

fighting. Sl. down Slave! Exit.

Tr. V[?] Exit.
Image of page 10 page: 10
Act 2 nd. Scene 2 nd.
Enter Mortimer.

Mor. Ho Villain!

what news now?

Enter a Messenger.

Mes. my Lord the

Traitor for thy

noble cause! Exit.

Traitor Passes over

the stage, and Exit

Image of page 11 page: 11
Note: The font style changes from block to script from here to the end.
Note: An inked rectangular block, showing through from the verso, partially obscures “to” in the third line.
Enter Manuel.

Man. on Slave

to battle ho!

Enter Slave: Sl. down

Manuel! Man. Coward

Slave and villain!

Sl. I dare thee on

die Coward! Man. Traitor

thou diest! draws.

Sl. Coward! draws.

beware! they fight.

Image of page 12 page: 12
Note: The final word in the second line is obscured by an inked rectangular block.
Enter Guards armed.

1 st. Ga. what ho [?].

Who is th ere?

2 nd. G. I. Guards

hasten over the

stage. Enter

Traitor Tr. ho I

have lost grievous

Image of page 13 page: 13
Note: A vertical line comes after “Soldier” in the penultimate line.
thought! I will

not lose away a-

way falls on his

sword and dies.

Enter Mortimer.

Mor. O! Who lies here?

the Traitor bathed

in blood. O! noble

countryman! O! loving

Soldier. I grieve for

thee. O! brave companion!

Image of page 14 page: 14
I grieve for thee

brave partner

but yet I will not

live to see thee thus

stabs himself. O! I

am slain. Dies.

Enter Manuel

and Slave fighting.

Slave is slain and

exit Manuel.

the End.

Transcription Gap: 15-20 (leaves torn out)
Image of page 21 page: 21
Editorial Note (page ornament):
Note: A small shape consisting of two s-curves spreading up and out to each side from a central point, with a third line arched between them.
Note: The final letter in the eighth line is obscured in the gutter.
Beauties of


Image of page 22 page: 22
Note: DGR copies out Portia's famous soliloquy from The Merchant of Venice Act IV scene 1.
Portia to Shylock
The quality of mercy is not

strained; It droppeth, as the

gentle rain from heaven

Upon the place beneath. It

is twice blessed; It blesseth

him that gives, and him that

takes. T'is mightiest in the

mightiest; it becomes. The th rone[d]

monarch better than his clown.

His sceptre shows the force

of temporal power, The attribute

to awe and majesty, Wherein

doth sit the dread and fear

of kings. But mercy is above

this scepter'd sway, It is en-

-throned in the hearts of kings

It is an attribute to God him-

-self; And earthly power

doth then shew likest God.

Image of page 23 page: 23
When mercy seasons justice,

Therfore, Jew, Though justice

be thy plea, consider this,—

That, in the course of justice,

none of us Should see salvation.

We do pray for mercy;

And that same prayer doth

teach us all to render

The deeds of mercy. I have

spoke thus much, To miti-

-gate the justice of thy plea;

Which if thou follow, this

strict court of Venice

Must needs give sentence

'gainst the mercha nt there.
Merchant of Venice.

Act 4 th, Scene 1 st.
Image of page 24 page: 24


The wonderful

Editorial Note (page ornament):
Note: A line illustration that curves out into swirls at both ends, possibly to suggest the movement of smoke or some aerial being; below are six circles with a horizontal line above them. At the foot of the page is a second line illustration: a diamond with “feet” and a “head” of curved prongs and dramatic s-curves stretching out to both sides, possibly to suggest wings, with detail suggesting the movement of air similar to that of the other illustration.
by Gabriel Rossetti

Painter of Playpictures.
Image of page 25 page: 25

Editorial Note (page ornament):
Note: A line illustration depicting what may be a lamp: a shape that rises up to a central point (which is surrounded by “petals”) and curves out to each side, with a separate “foot” curving out behind to the left and an outgrowth with jagged ridges curving up to the right, which may represent spiralling smoke or the growth of a plant.
Note: A vertical line divides the character names and the names that follow them into two columns.

  • Sultana. Mrs Siddons.
  • Aladdin.— Mr. Kemble.
  • Sultan. Mrs Cobham.
  • African Magician. Mr Kean
  • Princess Badroulboudour. Mrs Kemble
  • Aladdin's Mother. Mrs. Bland.
  • Grand Vizier. Mr. King.
  • African Magician's Brother. Mr. Hart.
  • Genius of the Lamp. Mr. Fiers
  • Genius of the Ring. Mr. Johnson.
  • Fatima. Mrs. Powell.
  • Grand Vizier's Son. Mr. Elton

Officers, Eunuchs, Guards,

Slaves, Servants, Jewellers, Heralds,

Soldiers, Grooms, Genii, Attendants,

Cupbearers, Musicians &c. &c. &c. &c.
Image of page 26 page: 26
Note: Writing on pages 26 and 27 follows hand-ruled lines.
Act 1. st. Scene 1 st.

E nter African Magician &

Aladdin. Al. Where will you

lead me? Mag. Into a bea[u]

-tiful garden, where all sorts

of fruits' grow. Al. Is't this?

Mag. Nay, it is not. Al. What
Image of page 27 page: 27
Note: A small dotted oval, elongated vertically, has its center slightly below the final letters of “beautiful” in the second line. It appears to depict a face. It is split in two by a vertical line and its lower half is cleft into two smaller half ovals. A heavily inked triangular shape (filled) shows through from the verso behind the first four letters of “garden” in the second line. There are large erased characters on the two lines following the text.
is't then? Mag. A much

more beautiful garden than this.

Deleted Text[?] YeA ?

Image of page 28 page: 28
Note: Various sketches: a filled triangular shape (possibly the impression of ink printed on the facing page); the head and neck of a man with a plumed headpiece, with larger versions of some of the curved shapes used to make up the illustration.
Image of page 29 page: 29
Note: Various sketches: a filled triangular shape (possibly the impression of ink printed on the facing page); three heads with elaborate headpieces; a full length soldier wielding a sword and shield, in a panelled costume and headpiece.
Image of page 30 page: 30
Note: The blotted impression of the inked figure from the facing page, depicting a full length warrior with plumed hat or helmet wielding a sword.
Image of page 31 page: 31
Note: Various sketches: a full length warrior with plumed hat or helmet wielding a sword, filled with ink; a further small figure with a sword on a distant horizon line.
Image of page 32 page: 32
Note: Various simple line sketches, including one that can be identified as a bird. The heavily inked image of the sword wielding figure shows through from the verso.
Image of page 33 page: 33
Note: Various sketches of an outdoor scene depicting a bird flying by a tree and what may be a crown.
page: 34
Note: Various sketches of an outdoor scene depicting a bird flying by a tree.
Note: The heavily inked image of what may be a crown shows through from the verso.
page: [35]
Note: Various line marks and a sketch of a head in an elaborate plumed headpiece.
Electronic Archive Edition: 1
Source File: 1-1835.safrica.rad.xml