« PreviousContinue »
the queen's picture. Come, follow us; we'll be thy good masters.
A Room in Paulina's House.
Enter LEONTES, POLIXENES, FLORIZEL, PERDITA,
CAMILLO, PAULINA, Lords and Attendants. Leon. O grave and good Paulina, the great comfort That I have had of thee! Paul.
What, sovereign sir, I did not well, I meant well. All my services, You have paid home : but that you have vouchsafed, With your crowned brother, and these your contracted Heirs of your kingdoms, my poor house to visit, It is a surplus of your grace, which never My life may last to answer. Leon.
O, Paulina, We honor you with trouble. But we came To see the statue of our queen: your gallery Have we passed through, not without much content In many singularities; but we saw not That which my daughter came to look upon, The statue of her mother. Paul.
As she lived peerless, So her dead likeness, I do well believe, Excels whatever yet you looked upon, Or hand of man hath done; therefore I keep it Lonely,” apart. But here it is; prepare To see the life as lively mocked, as ever Still sleep mocked death. Behold; and say, 'tis well.
[Paul. undraws a curtain and discovers a statue. I like your silence; it the more shows off Your wonder. But yet speak ;—first, you, my liege, Comes it not something near ? Leon.
Her natural posture !1 Good masters. It was a common petitionary phrase to ask a superior to be good lord, or good master to the supplicant.
2 The old copy reads lovely.
Chide me, dear stone; that I may say, indeed,
O, not by much.
As now she might have done
Per. And give me leave;
that ended when I but began,
O patience ; The statue is but newly fixed; the color's Not dry.
Cam. My lord, your sorrow was too sore laid on;
Dear my brother,
Indeed, my lord,
Would thus have wrought you, (for the stone is mine,)
Do not draw the curtain. Paul. No longer shall you gaze on't ; lest your
fancy May think anon it moves. Leon.
Let be, let be. Would I were dead, but that, methinks, alreadyWhat was he that did make it ?-See, my lord, Would you not deem, it breathed ? and that those
veins Did verily bear blood ? Pol.
Leon. The fixture of her eye has motion in't,
I'll draw the curtain ;
0, sweet Paulina, Make me to think so twenty years together; No settled senses of the world can match The pleasure of that madness. Let't alone. Paul. I am sorry, sir, I have thus far stirred you ;
but I could afflict you further. Leon.
Do, Paulina; For this affliction has a taste as sweet As any cordial comfort.-Still, methinks, There is an air comes from her. What fine chisel Could ever yet cut breath ? Let no man mock me, For I will kiss her. Paul.
i Worked, agitated. 2 The folío reads, “ Ild not have showed it.” In the late edition of Malone's Shakspeare it stands, “ Pll not have showed it.” But surely this is erroneous. 3 As for as if. With has the force of by. VOL. III.
Leon. No, not these twenty years.
So long could 1
If you can behold it,
What you can make her do,
Paul. It is required,
[Music. 'Tis time; descend ; be stone no more ; approach; Strike all that look upon with marvel. Come : I'll fill your grave up: stir; nay, come away; Bequeath to death your numbness, for from him Dear life redeems you.—You perceive she stirs :
[HERMIONE comes down from the pedestal. Start not: her actions shall be holy, as, You hear, my spell is lawful. Do not shun her, Until you see her die again ; for then You kill her double. Nay, present your hand. When she was young, you wooed her; now, in age, Is she become the suitor. Leon.
O, she's warm! [Embracing her.
She embraces him.
Pol. Ay, and make't manifest where she has lived, Or, how stolen from the dead. Paul.
That she is living, Were it but told you, should be hooted at Like an old tale ; but it appears she lives, Though yet she speak not. Mark a little while.Please you to interpose, fair madam ; kneel, And pray your mother's blessing.–Turn, good lady; Our Perdita is found.
[Presenting Per., who kneels to HER. Her.
You gods, look down,
There's time enough for that;
O peace, Paulina;
mine; But how, is to be questioned; for I saw her, As I thought, dead; and have in vain said many A prayer upon her grave. I'll not seek far (For him, I partly know his mind) to find thee Àn honorable husband.—Come, Camillo,
1 You who by this discovery have gained what you desired.