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Against the laws and statutes of this town,
his death. Luc. Kneel to the duke, before he pass the abbey. Enter Duke attended; AEGEON bare-headed; with
the Headsman and other Officers.
Adr. Justice, most sacred duke, against the abbess!
husband, Whom I made lord of me and all I had, At your important 8 letters,—this ill day A most outrageous fit of madness took him; That desperately he hurried through the street (With him his bondman, all as mad as he), Doing displeasure to the citizens By rushing in their houses, bearing thence Rings, jewels, any thing his rage did like. Once did I get him bound, and sent him home, Whilst to take order 9 for the wrongs I went, That here and there his fury had committed. Anon, I wot 10 not by what strong escape, He broke from those that had the guard of him; And, with his mad attendant and himself, Each one with ireful passion, with drawn swords, Met us again, and, madly bent on us, Chas'd us away; till, raising of more aid,
8 i. e. importunate. Shakspeare uses this word again in Lear, and in Much Ado about Nothing, in the same sense. The poet gives to Ephesus the custom of wardship, 80 long considered a grievous oppression in England. 9 i. e. to take measures. So in Othello :
Honest lago hath ta'en order for it.' 10 To wot is to know. Strong cscape is an escape effected by strength or violence.
We came again to bind them: then they fled
Enter a Servant. Serv. O mistress, mistress, shift and save yourself! My master and his man arell both broke loose, Beaten the maids a-row12, and bound the doctor, Whose beard they have singed off with brands of fire; And ever as it blaz'd, they threw on him Great pails of puddled mire to quench the hair: My master preaches patience to him, and the while His man with scissars nicks him13 like a fool: And, sure, unless you send some present help, Between them they will kill the conjurer.
Adr. Peace, fool, thy master and his man are here; And that is false, thou dost report to us.
Ser. Mistress, upon my life, I tell you true;
11 Are is here inaccurately put for have. 12 i. e. successively, one after another.
13 The heads of fools were shaved, or their hair cut close, as appears by the following passage in The Choice of Change, 1598.
Three things used by monks which provoke other men to laugh at their follies. 1. They are shaven and notched on the head like fooles.' Florio explains, «zuccone, a shaven pate, a notted poll, a poll-pate, a gull, a ninnie.'
and vows, i disfigure you within.
He cries for you, and vows, if he can take you, To scorch your face, and to disfigure you:
Hark, hark, I hear him, mistress; fly, be gone. · Duke. Come, stand by me, fear nothing: Guard
with halberds. Adr. Ah me, it is my husband! Witness you, That he is borne about invisible : Even now we hous'd him in the abbey here; And now he's there, past thought of human reason.
Enter ANTIPHOLUS and Dromio of Ephesus. Ant. E. Justice, most gracious duke, oh, grant
me justice! Even for the service that long since I did thee, When I bestrid thee in the wars14, and took Deep scars to save thy life; even for the blood That then I lost for thee, now grant me justice.
Aege. Unless the fear of death doth make me dote, I see my son Antipholus, and Dromio. Ant. E. Justice, sweet prince, against woman that
there. She whom thou gav'st to me to be my wife; That hath abused and dishonour'd me, Even in the strength and height of injury! Beyond imagination is the wrong, That she this day hath shameless thrown on me. Duke. Discover how, and thou shalt find me just. Ant. E. This day, great duke, she shut the doors
upon me, While she with harlots15 feasted in my house.
14 This act of friendship is frequently mentioned by Shakspeare. Thus in King Henry IV. Part 1.:-'Hal, if thou see me down in the battle and bestride me so: it is an act of friendehip. Again in King Henry VI. Part 111.:
"Three times to-day I holp him to his horse,
Three times bestrid him; thrice I led him off.' 15 Harlot was a term anciently applied to a rogue or base person among men, as well as to wantons among women. See Todd's Johnson.
Duke. A grievous fault: Say, woman, didst thou so? Adr. No, my good lord;~myself, he, and my
sister, To-day did dine together: So befall my soul, As this is false he burdens me withal!
Luc. Ne'er may I look on day, nor sleep on night, But she tells to your highness simple truth!
Ang. O perjur'd woman! They are both forsworn. In this the madman justly chargeth them.
Ant. E. My liege, I am advised 16 what I say ; Neither disturbed with the effect of wine, Nor heady rash, provok'd with raging ire, Albeit, my wrongs might make one wiser mad. This woman lock'd me out this day from dinner: That goldsmith there, were he not pack'd with her, Could witness it, for he was with me then; Who parted with me to go fetch a chain, Promising to bring it to the Porcupine, Where Balthazar and I did dine together. Our dinner done, and he not coming thither, I went to seek him: in the street I met him; And in his company, that gentleman, There did this perjur'd goldsmith swear me down That I this day of him receiv'd the chain, Which, God he knows, I saw not: for the which He did arrest me with an officer. I did obey; and sent my peasant home For certain ducats: he with none return’d. Then fairly I bespoke the officer, To go in person with me to my house. By the way we met My wife, her sister, and a rabble more Of vile confederates; along with them They brought one Pinch; a hungry lean-fac'd villain, A mere anatomy, a mountebank, A thread-bare juggler, and a fortune-teller; A needy, hollow-ey'd, sharp-looking wretch,
16 "I speak with consideration and circumspectly, not rashly and precipitately.'
A living dead man17: this pernicious slave,
Ang. My lord, in truth, thus far I witness with him; That he dined not at home, but was lock'd out. Duke. But had he such a chain of thee, or no ? Ang. He had, my lord: and when he ran in here, These people saw the chain about his neck.
Mer. Besides, I will be sworn, these ears of mine Heard you confess, you had the chąin of him, After you first forswore it on the mart, And, thereupon, I drew my sword on you; And then you fled into this abbey here, From whence, I think, you are come by miracle.
Ant. E. I never came within these abbey walls, Nor ever didst thou draw thy sword on me: I never saw the chain, so help me heaven! And this is false, you burden me withal.
Duke. Why, what an intricate impeach is this! I think, you all have drunk of Circe's cup. If here you hous’d him, here he would have been; If he were mad, he would not plead so coldly:You say, he dined at home; the goldsmith here Denies that saying :-Sirrah, what say you ? Dro. E. Sir, he dined with her there, at the Por
----but as a living death,
Sackville's Induction to the Mirror of Magistrates.