Page images


Must it be violent; and as he does conceire
He is dishonour'd by a man which ever
Profess'd to him, why, his revenges must
In that be made more bitter. Pear o'ersbades me;
Good expedition be my friend, and comfort
The gracious queen, part of his theme, but nothing
of his ill-ta'en suspicion ! Come, Camillo;
I will respect thee as a father, if
Thou bear'st my life off hence: Let us a void.

Cam. It is in mine authority, to command
The keys of all the posterns : Please your bighness
To take the urgent hour: Come, sir, awas. (Ertet


I am for you again : Pray you, sit by us,
And tell 's a tale.

Mam. Merry, or sad, shall't be ?
Her. As merry as you will.

A sad lale's best for winter:
I have one of sprites and goblins.

Let's have that, sir.
Come on, sit down :-Come on, and do your best
To fright me with your sprites: you're powerful at it.
Mam. There was a man, --

Nay, come, sit down ; then on.
Mam. Dwelt by a church-yard--I will tell it softly;
Yon crickets shall not hear it.

Come on then,
And give 't me in mine ear.
Enter LEONTES, ANTIGONUS, Lords, and

Leon. Was he met there ? his train ? Camillo with

1 Lord. Behind the tuft of pines I met them; never
Saw I men scour so on their way: I eyed them
Even to their ships,

How bless'd am I
In my just censure ? in my true opinion ?
Alack, for lesser knowledge!-How accursed,
In being so blest! - There may be in the cup
A spider steep'd, and one may drink; depart,
And yet partake no venom; for his knowledge
Is not infected: but if one present
The abhorr'd ingredient to his eye, make known
How he hath drank, he cracks his gorge, his sides,
With violent hefts :- I have drank, and seen the spider.
Camillo was his help in this, his pander! -
There is a plot against my life, my crown;
All's true, that is mistrusted : -that false villain,
Whom I employ'd, was pre-employ'd by him :
He has discover'd my design, and I
Remain a pinch'd thing: yea, a very trick
For them to play at will. ---How came the posterns
So easily open ?

By his great authority;
Which often hath no less prevail'd than so,

your command.

I know't too well.
Give me the boy ; I am glad, you did not nurse him:
Though he does bear some sign of me, set you
Have too much blood in him.


SCENE I.- The same.
Her. Take the boy to you: be so troubles me,
Tis past enduring.
1 Lady.

Come, my gracious lord,
Shall I be your play-fellow?

No, I'll none of yos
1 Lady. Why, my sweet lord ?

Mam. You'll kiss me hard ; and speak to me as if
I were a baby still.-I love you better.

Lady. And why so, my good lord ?
Your brows are blacker; yet black brows, they are
Become some women best; so that there be not
Too much hair there, but in a semi-circle,
Or half-moon made with a pen.

Mam. I learn'd it out of women's faces. Pray Boll,
What colour are your eye-brows ?

Mam. Nay, that's a mock: I have seen a lady's pos!
That has been blue, but not her eye-brows.
% Lady.

Hark se:
The queen, your mother, rounds apace : we shall
Present our services to a fine new prince,
One of these days: and then you'd wanton with us,
If we would have you.

She is spread of late
Into a goodly bulk : Good time encounter her! [oor

Iler. What wisdom stirs amongst you? Cone, sir

Nor lor because

Who taught you this?

Blue, my lord.

I Lady:

1 Lady.

[ocr errors][merged small]


What is this ? sport?
Leon. Bear the boy hence, he shall not come about
Away with him :-and let her sport herself [her :
With that she's big with; for 'cis Polixenes
Has made thee sweil thus.

But I'd say, he had not,
And, I'll be sworn, you would believe my saying,
Howe'er you lean to the nayward.

You, my lords,
Look on her, mark her well; be but about
To say, she is a goodly lady, and
The justice of your hearts will thereto add,

T'is píly she's not honest, honourable :
Praise her but for this her without-door form,
(Which, on my faith, deserves high speech,) and straight
The shrug, the hum, or ha; these petty brands,
That calumny doth use:-0, I am out,
That mercy does; for calumny will sear
Virtue itself :-these shrugs, these hums, and ha's,
When you have said, she's goodly, come between,
Ere you can say, she's honest : But be it known
From him, that has most cause to griere it should be,
She's an adultress.

Should a villain say so,
The most replenish'd villain in the world,
He were as much more villain : you, my lord,
Do but mistake.

You have mistook, my lady,
Polixenes for Leontes: 0 thou thing,
Which I'll not call a creature of thy place,
Lest barbarism, making me the precedent,
Should a like language use to all degrees,
And mannerly distinguishment leave out
Betwixt the prince and beggar! I have said,
She's an adultrees; I have said with whom :
More, she's a traitor; and Camillo is
A federary with her; and one that knows
What she should shame to know herself,
But with her most vile principal, that she's
A bed-swerver, even as bad as those
That vulgars give bold titles; ay, and privy
To this their late escape.

No, by my life,
Privy to none of this: How will this grieve you,
When you shall come to clearer knowledge, that
You thus have publish'd me? Gentle my lord,
You scarce can right me throughly then, to say
You did mistake.

[ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small]

1 Lord.

Good my lord, -
Ant. It is for you we speak, not for ourselves :
You are abused, and by some putter-on,
That will be damn'd for't ;'would I knew the villain,
I would land damn him! Be she honour-flaw'd, -
I have three daughters; the eldest is eleven;
The second, and the third, nine, and some five :
If this prove true, they 'll pay for 't: by mine honour,
I'll geld them all; fourteen they shall not see,
To bring false generations : they are co-hers;
And I had rather glib myself, than they
Should not produce fair issue.

Cease ; no more.
You smell this business with a sense as cold
As is a dead man's nose: I see 't, and feel't,
As you feel doing thus; and see withal
The instruments that feel.

Ir it be so,
We need no grave to bury honesty;
There's not a grain of it, the face to sweeter
or the whole dungy earth.

What! lack I credit?
1 Lord. I had rather you did lack, than I, my lord,
Upon this ground : and more it would content me
To have her honour true, than your suspicion ;
Be blamed for 't how you might.

Why, what need we
Commune with you of this ? but rather follow
Our forceful instigation ? Our prerogative
Calls pot your counsels ; but our natural goodness
Imparts this: which,-if you, (or stupified,
Or seeming so in skill,) cannot, or will not,
Relish as truth, like us ; inform yourselves,
We need no more of your advice: the matter,
The loss, the gain, the ordering on't, is all
Properly ours.

And I wish, my liege,
You had only in your silent judgment tried it,
Without more overture.

How could that be?
Either thou art most ignorant by age,
Or thou wert born a fool. Camillo's flight,
Added to their familiarity,
(Which was as gross as ever uch'd conjecture,
That lack'd sight only, nought for approbation,
But only seeing, all other circumstances
Made up to the deed,) doth push on this proceeding:
Yet, for a greater confirmation,

[merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors]
« PreviousContinue »