Page images
PDF
EPUB

Ant. S. Farewell till then. I will go lose myself, And wander up and down, to view the city. Mer. Sir, I commend you to your own content.

[Exit Merchant. Ant. S. He that commends me to my own content, Commends me to the thing I cannot get. I to the world am like a drop of water, That in the ocean seeks another drop; Who, falling there to find his fellow forth, Unseen, inquisitive, confounds himself. So I, to find a mother, and a brother, In quest of them, unhappy, lose myself.

Enter DROMIO of Ephesus. Here comes the almanac of my true date.2What now! how chance, thou art returned so soon? Dro. E. Returned so soon! rather approached too

late. The capon burns, the pig falls from the spit; The clock hath strucken twelve upon the bell, My mistress made it one upon my cheek. She is so hot, because the meat is cold; The meat is cold, because you come not home : You come not home, because you have no stomach ; You have no stomach, having broken your fast; But we, that know what 'tis to fast and pray, Are penitent for your default to-day.

Ant. S. Stop in your wind, sir; tell me this, I pray; Where have you left the money that I gave you? Dro. E. 0,-sixpence, that I had o' Wednesday

last, To pay the saddler for my mistress' crupper ;The saddler had it, sir ; Í kept it not.

Ant. S. I am not in a sportive humor now. Tell me, and dally not, where is the money ?

1 Confounded, here, does not signify destroyed, as Malone asserts; but overwhelmed, mixed confusedly together, lost.

2 They were both born in the same hour, and therefore the date of Dromio's birth ascertains that of his master.

We being strangers here, how dar’st thou trust
So great a charge from thine own custody?

Dro. E. I pray you, jest, sir, as you sit at dinner.
I from my mistress come to you in post;
If I return, I shall be post indeed ;
For she will score your fault upon my pate.
Methinks, your maw, like mine, should be your clock,
And strike you home without a messenger.
Ant. S. Come, Dromio, come, these jests are out of

season; Reserve them till a merrier hour than this. Where is the gold I gave in charge to thee?

Dro. E. To me, sir ? why you gave no gold to me. Ant. S. Come on, sir knave, have done your fool

ishness, And tell me how thou hast disposed thy charge. Dro. E. My charge was but to fetch you from the

mart
Home to your house, the Phænix, sir, to dinner.
My mistress, and her sister, stay for you.

Ant. S. Now, as I am a Christian, answer me,
In what safe place you have bestowed my money;
Or I shall break that merry sconce ? of yours,
That stands on tricks when I am undisposed.
Where is the thousand marks thou hadst of me?

Dro. E. I have some marks of yours upon my pate,
Some of my mistress' marks upon my shoulders,
But not a thousand marks between you both.-
If I should pay your worship those again,
Perchance you will not bear them patiently.
Ant. S. Thy mistress' marks! what mistress, slave,

hast thou ? Dro. E. Your worship’s wife, my mistress at the

Phoenix;
She that doth fast, till you come home to dinner,
And prays, that you will hie you home to dinner.

1 The old copy reads cook. The emendation is Pope's.

2 So in Hamlet, Act v. Sc. 1:45 Why does he suffer this rude knave to knock him about the sconce ?” Sconce also signified a fortification, commonly round, as well as the human head.

Ant. S. What, wilt thou flout me thus unto my face, Being forbid? There, take you that, sir knave.

[Strikes him. Dro. E. What mean you, sir ? For God's sake,

hold your hands; Nay, an you will not, sir, I'll take my heels.

[Exit Dromo E. Ant. S. Upon my life, by some device or other, The villain is o'er-raught? of all my money. They say, this town is full of cozenage ; 2 As, nimble jugglers, that deceive the eye; Dark-working sorcerers, that change the mind; Soul-killing witches, that deform the body; Disguised cheaters, prating mountebanks, And many such like liberties of sin.3 If it prove so, I will be gone the sooner. I'll to the Centaur, to go seek this slave; I greatly fear my money is not safe.

[Exit.

АСТ II.

SCENE I. A public Place.

Enter ADRIANA and LUCIANA.
Adr. Neither my husband, nor the slave returned,
That in such haste I sent to seek his master!
Sure, Luciana, it is two o'clock.

Luc. Perhaps some merchant hath invited him,
And from the mart he's somewhere gone to dinner.
Good sister, let us dine, and never fret.
A man is master of his liberty;

1 i. e. overreached. 2 This was the character which the ancients gave of Ephesus. 3 That is, licentious actions, sinful liberties.

Time is their master; and when they see time,
They'll go, or come. If so, be patient, sister.

Adr. Why should their liberty than ours be more ?
Luc. Because their business still lies out o’ door.
Adr. Look, when I serve him so, he takes it ill.
Luc. O, know, he is the bridle of your will.
Adr. There's none but asses, will be bridled so.

Luc. Why, headstrong liberty is lashed with woe.
There's nothing, situate under Heaven's eye,
But bath his bound, in earth, in sea, in sky.
The beasts, the fishes, and the winged fowls,
Are their males' subjects, and at their controls.
Men, more divine, the masters of all these,
Lords of the wide world, and wild watery seas,
Endued with intellectual sense and souls,
Of more pre-eminence than fish and fowls,
Are masters to their females, and their lords.
Then let your will attend on their accords.

Adr. This servitude makes you to keep unwed.
Luc. Not this, but troubles of the marriage bed.
Adr. But, were you wedded, you would bear some

sway.
Luc. Ere I learn love, I'll practise to obey.
Adr. How if your husband start some other where ?
Luc. Till he come home again, I would forbear.
Adr. Patience, unmoved, no marvel though she

pause ;2
They can be meek, that have no other cause.3
A wretched soul, bruised with adversity,
We bid be quiet, when we hear it cry;
But were we burdened with like weight of pain,
As much, or more, we should ourselves complain :
So thou, that hast no unkind mate to grieve thee,
With urging helpless patience wouldst relieve me.
But, if thou live to see like right bereft,
This fool-begged patience in thee will be left.

Luc. Well, I will marry one day, but to try.-
Here comes your man ; now is your husband nigh.

i Steevens proposes to read leashed, i. e. coupled. 2 To pause is to rest, to be quiet. 3 i. e. no cause to be otherwise.

Enter Dromio of Ephesus.
Adr. Say, is your tardy master now at hand ?

Dro. E. Nay, he is at two hands with me, and that my two ears can witness. Adr. Say, didst thou speak with him ? Know'st

thou his mind ? Dro. E. Ay, ay, he told his mind upon mine ear. Beshrew his hand, I scarce could understand it.

Luc. Spake he so doubtfully, thou couldst not feel his meaning ?

Dro. E. Nay, he struck so plainly, I could too well feel his blows; and withal so doubtfully, that I could scarce understand them. .

Adr. But say, I pr’ythee, is he coming home ? It seems he hath great care to please his wife. Dro. E. Why, mistress, sure my master is horn

mad. Adr. Horn-mad, thou villain ? Dro. E. I mean not cuckold-mad; but, sure, he's

stark mad. When I desired him to come home to dinner, He asked me for a thousand marks in gold. 'Tis dinner-time, quoth I; My gold, quoth he: Your meat doth burn, quoth I; My gold, quoth he: Will you come home ? 1 quoth I; My gold, quoth he: Where is the thousand marks I gave thee, villain? The pig, quoth I, is burned ; My gold, quoth he: My mistress, sir, quoth I; Hang up thy mistress; I know not thy mistress; out on thy mistress !

Luc. Quoth who?

Dro. E. Quoth my master. I know, quoth he, no house, no wife, no mistress ;-'. So that my errand, due unto my tongue, I thank him, I bare home upon my shoulders ; For, in conclusion, he did beat me there. Adr. Go back again, thou slave, and fetch him

home. 1 Home is not in the old copy: it was supplied, to complete the verse, by Capell.

vol. III. 16

que unto my tona no mistress ;

thank him. I i

« PreviousContinue »