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Vincentio, duke of Vienna.
Isabella, sister to Claudio.
Lords, gentlemen, guards, officers, and other at
MEASURE FOR MEASURE.
SCENE I. -An apartment in the Duke's palace. Enter Duke, Escalus, Lords, and attendants.
Escal. My lord. Duke. Of government the properties to unfold, Would seem in me to affect speech and discourse; Since I am put to know that your own science, Exceeds, in that, the lists of all advice My strength can give you : then no more remains But that to your sufficiency, as your worth is able, And let them work. The nature of our people, Our city's institutions, and the terms For common justice, you are as pregnanta in, As art and practice hath enriched any That we remember: there is our commission, From which we would not have you warp.-Call
hither, say, bid come before us Angelo.
(Erit an attendant. What figure of us think you he will bear? For you must know, we have with special soul Elected him our absence to supply ; Lent him our terror, drest him with our love; And given bis deputation all the organs Of our own power : what think you
of it? Escal. If any in Vienna be of worth To undergo such ample grace and honour, (1) Bounds.
(2) Full of.
It is lord Angelo.
Enter Angelo Duke.
Look, where he comes. Ang. Always obedient to your grace's will, I come to know your pleasure. Duke.
Angelo, There is a kind of character in thy life, That, to the observer, doth thy history Fully unfold : thyself and thy belongingsl Are not thine own so proper,2 as to waste Thyself upon thy virtues, them on thee. Heaven doth with us, as we with torches do ; Not light them for themselves ; for if our virtues Did not go forth of us, 'twere all alike Asif we had them not. Spirits are not finely touch'd, But to fine issues :3 nor nature never lends The smallest scruple of her excellence, But, like a thrifty goddess, she determines Herself the glory of a creditor, Both thanks and use. But I do bend my speech To one that can my part in him advertise ; Hold therefore, Angelo; In our remove, be thou at full ourself ; Mortality and mercy in Vienna Live in thy tongue and heart: Old Escalus, Though first in question, is thy secondary : Take thy commission. Ang
Now, good my lord, Let there be some more test made of my metal, Before so noble and so great a figure Be stamp'd upon
No more evasion : We have with a leaven'd and prepared choice Proceeded to you ; therefore take your honours. Our haste from hence is of so quick condition, That it prefers itself, and leaves unquestion'd
(1) Endowments. (2) So much thy own property. For high purposes.
Matters of needful value. We shall write to you,
Yet, give leave, my lord, That we may bring you something on the way.
Duke. My haste may not admit it; Nor need you, on mine honour, have to do With any scruple: your scopel is as mine own; So to enforce, or qualify the laws, As to your soul seems good. Give me your hand; I'll privily away: I love the people, But do not like to stage me to their eyes : Though it do well, I do not relish well Their loud applause, and aves2 vehement; Nor do I think the man of safe discretion, That does affect it. Once more, fare you want
Ang. The heavens give safety to your purposes: Escal. Lead forth, and bring you back in happiDuke. I thank you : fare you well. (Exit.
Escal. I shall desire you, sir, to give me leave
I'll wait upon your honour.
[Exeunt. SCENE II.-A street. Enter Lucio and two
Gentlemen. Lucio. If the duke, with the other dukes, come (1) Extent of power.
(2) Hailings. VOL. I.
not to composition with the king of Hungary, why, then all the dukes fall upon the king.
1 Gent. Heaven grant us its peace, but not the king of Hungary's !
2 Gent. Amen.
Lucio. Thou concludest like the sanctimonious. pirate, that went to sea with the ten command. ments, but scraped one out of the table.
2 Gent. Thou shalt not steal? Lucio. Ay, that he razed.
1 Gent. Why, 'twas a commandment to command the captain and all the rest from their functions; they put forth to steal : there's not a soldier of us all, that, in the thanksgiving before meat, doth relish the petition well that prays for peace.
2 Gent. I never heard any soldier dislike it.
Lucio, I believe thee; for, I think, thou never wast where grace was said.
2 Gent. No? a dozen times at least. 1 Gent. What? in metre? Lucio. In any proportion, or in any language. I Gent. I think, or in any religion. Lucio. Ay! why not? Grace is grace, despite of all controversy: 'as for example; thou thyself art a wicked villain, despite of all grace.
1 Gent. Well, there went but a pair of sheers between us.2
Lucio. I grant; as there may between the lists and the velvet : thou art the list.
1 Gent. And thou the velvet: thou art good velvet; thou art a three-pil'd piece, I warrant thee: I had as lief be a list of an English kersey, as be pil'd, as thou art pild, for a French velvet. Do speak feelingly now?
Lucio. I think thou dost; and, indeed, with most painful feeling of thy speech: I will, out of
Measure. (2) A cut of the same cloth.