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Post. By your pardon, sir, I was then a young traveller; rather shunned to go even with what I heard, than in my every action to be guided by others' experiences: but, upon my mended judgment, (if I offend not to say it is mended,) my quarrel was not altogether slight.
French. 'Faith, yes, to be put to the arbitrement of swords; and by such two, that would, by all likelihood, have confounded one the other, or have fallen both. [difference? Iach. Can we, with manners, ask what was the French. Safely, I think; 'twas a contention in public, which may, without contradiction, suffer the report, It was much like an argument that fell out last night, where each of us fell in praise of our country mistresses: This gentleman at that time vouching, (and upon warrant of bloody affirmation,) his to be more fair, virtuous, wise, chaste, constantqualified, and less attemptible, than any the rarest of our ladies in France.
Iach. That lady is not now living; or this gentleman's opinion, by this worn out.
Post. She holds her virtue still, and I my mind. Iach. You must not so far prefer her 'fore ours of Italy.
Post. Being so far provoked as I was in France, I would abate her nothing; though I profess myself her adorer, not her friend.
Iach. As fair, and as good, (a kind of hand-inhand comparison,) had been something too fair, and too good for any lady in Britany. If she went before others I have seen, as that diamond of yours out-lustres many I have beheld, I could not but believe she excelled many: but I have not seen the most precious diamond that is, nor you the lady. [stone. Post. I praised her as I rated her: so do I my Iach. What do you esteem it at? Post. More than the world enjoys. Iach. Either your unparagoned mistress is dead, or she's outprized by a trifle.
Post. You are mistaken: the one may be sold, or given: if there were wealth enough for the purchase, or merit for the gift: the other is not a thing for sale, and only the gift of the gods.
Iach. Which the gods have given you? Post. Which, by their graces, I will keep. Iach. You may wear her in title yours: but, you know, strange fowl light upon neighbouring ponds. Your ring may be stolen too: so, of your brace of unprizeable estimations, the one is but frail, and the other casual; a cunning thief, or a that-wayaccomplished courtier, would hazard the winning both of first and last.
Post. Your Italy contains none so accomplished a courtier, to convince the honour of my mistress; if, in the holding or loss of that, you term her frail. I do nothing doubt, you have store of thieves; notwithstanding, I fear not my ring.
Phi. Let us leave here, gentlemen.
Post. Sir, with all my heart. This worthy signior, I thank him, makes no stranger of me; we are familiar at first.
Iach. With five times so much conversation, I should get ground of your fair mistress: make her go back, even to the yielding; had I admittance, and opportunity to friend.
Post. No, no.
Phi. Gentlemen, enough of this; it came in too suddenly; let it die as it was born, and, I pray you, be better acquainted.
Iach. 'Would I had put my estate, and my neighbour's, on the approbation of what I bave spoke. Post. What lady would you choose to assail? Iach. Yours; whom in constancy, you think, stands so safe. I will lay you ten thousand ducats to your ring, that, commend me to the court where your lady is, with no more advantage than the opportunity of a second conference, and I will bring from thence that honour of hers, which you imagine so reserved.
Post. I will wage against your gold, gold to it: my ring I hold as dear as my finger; 'tis part of it. Iach. You are a friend, and therein the wiser. If you buy ladies' flesh at a million a dram, you cannot preserve it from tainting: But, I see, you have some religion in you, that you fear.
Post. This is but a custom in your tongue; you bear a graver purpose, I hope.
Iach. I am the master of my speeches; and would undergo what's spoken, I swear.
Post. Will you?—I shall but lend my diamond till your return:-Let there be covenants drawn between us: My mistress exceeds in goodness the hugeness of your unworthy thinking: I dare you to this match: here's my ring.
Phi. I will have it no lay.
Iach. By the gods it is one:-If I bring you no sufficient testimony, that I have enjoyed the dearest bodily part of your mistress, my ten thousand ducats are yours; so is your diamond too. If I come off, and leave her in such honour as you have trust in, she your jewel, this your jewel, and my gold are yours:-provided, I have your commendation, for my more free entertainment.
Post. I embrace these conditions; let us have articles betwixt us:-only, thus far you shall answer. If you make your voyage upon her, and give me directly to understand you have prevail'd, I am no further your enemy, she is not worth our debate: if she remain unseduced, (you not making it appear otherwise,) for your ill opinion, and the assault you have made to her chastity, you shall answer me with your sword.
Iach. Your hand; a covenant: we will have these things set down by lawful counsel, and straight away for Britain; lest the bargain should catch cold, and starve: I will fetch my gold, and have our two wagers recorded.
Post. Agreed. [Exeunt Posthumus and Iachime. French. Will this hold, think you?
Phi. Signior Iachimo will not from it. Prav, let us follow 'em. [Exeunt.
SCENE VI.-Britain. A Room in Cymbeline's
Enter Queen, Ladies, and CORNElius. Queen. Whiles yet the dew's on ground, gather those flowers:
Make haste: Who has the note of them? 1 Lady.
I, madam, Queen. Despatch.[Exeunt Ladies. Now, master doctor; have you brought those drugs? Cor. Pleaseth your highness, ay: here they are, madam: (Presenting a small box.)
But I beseech your grace, (without offence;
I do wonder, doctor, Thou ask'st me such a question: Have I not been Thy pupil long? Hast thou not learn'd me how To make perfumes? distil? preserve? yea, so, That our great king himself doth woo me oft For my confections? Having thus far proceeded, (Unless thou think'st me devilish,) is't not meet, That I did amplify my judgment in
Strange lingering poisons: I do know her spirit,
No further service, doctor,
She will not quench; and let instructions enter
(The Queen drops a box: Pisanio takes it up.)
That I mean to thee. Tell thy mistress how
Not to be shak'd: the agent for his master;
To taste of too. So, so ;-well done, well done:
And shall do:
But when to my good lord I prove untrue,
Imo. A father cruel, and a step-dame false;
That hath her husband banish'd;-O, that husband!
Change you, madam ?
The worthy Leonatus is in safety. And greets your highness dearly.
You are kindly welcome.
(Presents a letter.) Thanks, good sir:
Is warm'd by the rest, and takes it thankfully.-
What makes your admiration? Iach. It cannot be i'the eye; for apes and monkeys,
Twixt two such shes, would chatter this way, and
Imo. What is the matter, trow?
The cloyed will,
(That satiate yet unsatisfied desire,
What, dear sir,
Thus raps you? Are you well? Iach. Thanks, madam; well:-'Beseech you, sir, desire (To Pisanio.) My man's abode, where I did leave him: he Is strange and peevish.
To give him welcome.
I was going, sir,
Imo. Continues well my lord? His health be
Iach. Well, madam.
Imo. Is he dispos'd to mirth? I hope, he is.
So merry and so gamesome: he is call'd
Iach. I never saw him sad. There is a Frenchman his companion, one,
An eminent monsieur, that, it seems, much loves A Gallian girl at home: he furnaces
The thick sighs from him; whiles the jolly Briton (Your lord, I mean,) laughs from's free lungs, cries, O!
Can my sides hold, to think, that man,—who knows
Imo. Will my lord say so?
[laughter. Iach. Ay, madam; with his eyes in flood with It is a recreation to be by, [know, And hear him mock the Frenchman: But, heavens Some men are much to blame.
Imo. Not he, I hope,
Iach. Not he: But yet heaven's bounty towards him might
Be us'd more thankfully. In himself, 'tis much;
Am I one, sir?
You look on me: What wreck discern you in me, Deserves your pity?
Lamentable! What! To hide me from the radiant sun, and solace I'the dungeon by a snuff?
I pray you, sir,
I was about to say, enjoy your-But
You do seem to know
Something of me, or what concerns me ; 'Pray you,
Had I this cheek
To bathe my lips upon; this hand, whose touch,
My lord, I fear,
And himself. Not I,
Inclin'd to this intelligence, pronounce
The beggary of his change; but 'tis your graces, That from my mutest conscience, to my tongue, Charms this report out.
Let me bear no more.
[beart Iach. O dearest soul! your cause doth strike my With pity, that doth make me sick. A lady So fair, and fasten'd to an empery, Would make the great'st king double! to be partner'd
With tomboys, hir'd with that self-exhibition, Which your own coffers yield! with diseas'd ventures,
That play with all infirmities for gold,
Which rottenness can lend nature; such boil'd staff,
Should be make me Live like Diana's priest, betwixt cold sheets; Whiles he is vaulting variable ramps,
In your despite, upon your purse? Revenge it.
What ho, Pisanio!
Thee and the devil alike.-What, ho! Pisanio!—
Which you know cannot err: The love I bear him Made me to fan you thus; but the gods made you, Unlike all other, chaffless. Pray, your pardon.
Imo. All's well, sir: Take my power i'the court
Iach. My humble thanks. I had almost forgot To entreat your grace but in a small request, And yet of moment too, for it concerns Your lord; myself, and other noble friends, Are partners in the business.
Which I, the factor for the rest, have done
Attended by my men: I will make bold To send them to you, only for this night; I must aboard to-morrow.
O, no, no.
I cross'd the seas on purpose, and on promise
SCENE I.-Court before Cymbeline's Palace.
Clo. Was there ever man had such luck! when I kissed the jack upon an up-cast, to be hit away! I had an hundred pound on't: And then a whoreson jackanapes must take me up for swearing; as if I borrowed mine oaths of him, and might not spend them at my pleasure.
1 Lord. What got he by that? You have broke his pate with your bowl.
2 Lord. If his wit had been like him that broke it, it would have ran all out.
(Aside.) Clo. When a gentleman is disposed to swear, it is not for any standers-by to curtail his oaths: Ha? 2 Lord. No, my lord; nor (Aside.) crop the ears of them.
Clo. Whoreson dog!-I give him satisfaction? 'Would, he had been one of my rank!
2 Lord. To have smelt like a fool. (Aside.) Clo. I am not more vexed at any thing in the earth,-A pox on't! I had rather not be so noble as I am; they dare not fight with me, because of the queen my mother: every jack-slave hath his belly full of fighting, and I must go up and down like a cock that no body can match.
2 Lord. You are a cock and capon too; and you crow, cock, with your comb on. (Aside.)
Clo. Sayest thou?
1 Lord. It is not fit, your lordship should undertake every companion that you give offence to. Clo. No, I know that: but it is fit, I should commit offence to my inferiors.
2 Lord. Ay, it is fit for your lordship only. Clo. Why, so I say.
1 Lord. Did you hear of a stranger, that's come to court to-night?
Clo. A stranger! and I not know on't! 2 Lord. He's a strange fellow himself, and knows it not. (Aside.) 1 Lord. There's an Italian come; and, 'tis thought, one of Leonatus' friends.
Clo. Leonatus! a banished rascal; and he's another, whatsoever he be. Who told you of this stranger?
1 Lord. One of your lordship's pages. Clo. Is it fit, I went to look upon him? Is there no derogation in't?
1 Lord. You cannot derogate, my lord.
2 Lord. You are a fool granted; therefore your issues being foolish, do not derogate. (Aside.) Clo. Come, I'll go see this Italian: What I have lost to-day at bowls, I'll win to-night of him. Come, go.
2 Lord, I'll attend your lordship. [Exeunt Cloten and first Lord. That such a crafty devil as is his mother Should yield the world this ass! a woman, that Bears all down with her brain; and this her son
Cannot take two from twenty for his heart,
Repairs itself by rest: Our Tarquin thus
Ah, but some natural notes about her body,
May bare the raven's eye: I lodge in fear;
One, two, three,-Time, time!
(Goes into the trunk. The scene closes.)
Hark! hark! the lark at heaven's gate sings,
His steeds to water at those springs
And winking Mary-buds begin
With every thing that pretty bin:
So, get you gone: If this penetrate, I will consider your music the better: if it do not, it is a vice in her ears, which horse-hairs, and cat-guts, nor the voice of unpaved eunuch to boot, can never amend. [Exeunt Musicians.
Enter CYMBELINE and Queen.
2 Lord. Here comes the king. Clo. I am glad, I was up so late; for that's the reason I was up so early: He cannot choose but take this service I have done, fatherly-Goodmorrow to your majesty, and to my gracious mother. [daughter? Cym. Attend you here the door of our stern Will she not forth?
Clo. I have assailed her with music, but she vouchsafes no notice.
Cym. The exile of her minion is too new; She hath not yet forgot him: some more time Must wear the print of his remembrance out, And then she's yours.
Queen. You are most bound to the king; Who let's go by no vantages, that may Prefer you to his daughter: Frame yourself To orderly solicits; and be friended With aptness of the season: make denials Increase your services: so seem, as if You were inspir'd to do those duties, which You tender to her; that you in all obey her, Save when command to your dismission tends, And therein you are senseless. Clo. Enter a Messenger. Mess. So like you, sir, ambassadors from Rome; The one is Caius Lucius.
Senseless? not so.
Cym. A worthy fellow, Albeit he comes on angry purpose now; But that's no fault of his: We must receive him According to the honour of his sender; And towards himself, his goodness forespent on us, We must extend our notice.-Our dear son, When you have given good morning to your mistress,
Attend the queen, and us; we shall have need To employ you towards this Roman.-Come, our queen.
[Exeunt. Cym. Queen, Lords, and Mess.
Clo. If she be up, I'll speak with her; if not, Let her lie still, and dream.—By your leave, ho!(Knocks.)
I know her women are about her; What
Lady. Who's there, that knocks? Clo. Lady. Clo. Yes, and a gentlewoman's son. Than some, whose tailors are as dear as yours, Lady. Can justly boast of: What's your lordship's pleasure?
Clo. Your lady's person: Is she ready? Lady.
To keep her chamber.
[report. Clo. There's gold for you; sell me your good Lady. How! my good name? or to report of you What I shall think is good?-The princessEnter IMOGEN.
Clo. Good-morrow, fairest sister: Your sweet
[pains Imo. Good-morrow, sir: You lay out too much For purchasing but trouble; the thanks I give, Is telling you that I am poor of thanks, And scarce can spare them. Clo. Still, I swear, I love you. Imo. If you but said so, 'twere as deep with me: If you swear still, your recompence is still That I regard it not. This is no answer.
Imo. But that you shall not say I yield, being
I would not speak. I pray you, spare me : i'faith, I shall unfold equal discourtesy
To your best kindness; one of your great knowing Should learn, being taught, forbearance.
Clo. To leave you in your madness, 'twere my sin: I will not.
Imo. Fools are not mad folks.
Do you call me fool?
Imo. As I am mad, I do : If you'll be patient, I'll no more be mad; That cures us both. I am much sorry, sir, You put me to forget a lady's manners, By being so verbal: and learn now, for all, That I, which know my heart, do here pronounce, By the very truth of it, I care not for you; And am so near the lack of charity,
(To accuse myself) I hate you: which I had rather You felt, than make't my boast.
You sin against Obedience, which you owe your father. For The contract you pretend with that base wretch, (One, bred of alms, and foster'd with cold dishes, With scraps o'the court,) it is no contract, none: And though it be allow'd in meaner parties, (Yet who, than he, more mean?) to knit their souls (On whom there is no more dependency But brats and beggary) in self-figur'd knot;