« PreviousContinue »
am sure to be hanged at home: 'tis dangerous. Well, I perceive he was a wise fellow, and had good discretion, that being bid to ask what he would of the king, desired he might know none of his secrets. Now do I see he had some reason for it: for if a king bid a man be a villain, he is bound by the indenture of his oath to be one.-Hush, here come the lords of Tyre.
Enter HELICANUS, ESCANES, and other Lords. Hel. You shall not need, my fellow peers of Tyre, Further to question of your king's departure. His seal'd commission, left in trust with me, Doth speak sufficiently; he's to travel.
Thal. How! the king gone! Hel. If further yet you will be satisfied, Why, as it were unlicens'd of your loves, He would depart, I'll give some light unto you. Being at Antioch
What from Antioch? (Aside.) Hel. Royal Antiochus (on what cause I know not,) [so:
Took some displeasure at him; at least he judg'd
With whom each minute threatens life or death.
I shall not be hang'd now, although I would;
Thal. From him I come
With message unto princely Pericles;
SCENE IV.-Tharsus. A Room in the Governor's House.
Enter CLEON, DIONYZA, and Attendants.
Dio. That were to blow at fire, in hope to quench
Who wanteth food, and will not say he wants it,
Cle. This Tharsus, o'er which I have government, (A city, on whom plenty held full band,) For riches, strew'd herself even in the streets; Whose towers bore heads so high, they kiss'd the clouds,
These months, whom but of late, earth, sea, and air,
And strangers ne'er beheld, but wonder'd at;
Dio. Our cheeks and hollow eyes do witness it. Cle. O, let those cities, that of Plenty's cup And her prosperities so largely taste, With their superfluous riots, hear these tears! The misery of Tharsus may be theirs. Enter a Lord. Lord. Where's the lord governor? Cle. Here.
Speak out thy sorrows, which thou bring'st, in haste, For comfort is too far for us to expect.
Lord. We have descried, upon our neighbouring shore,
A portly sail of ships make hitherward.
One sorrow never comes, but brings an heir,
And so in ours: some neighbouring nation,
Hath stuff'd these hollow vessels with their power,
Lord. That's the least fear; for, by the semOf their white flags display'd, they bring us peace, And come to us as favourers, not as foes.
Cle. Thou speak'st like him's untutor❜d to repeat, Who makes the fairest shew, means most deceit. But bring they what they will, what need we fear? The ground's the low'st, and we are half way there. Go tell their general, we attend him here,
To know for what he comes, and whence he comes, And what he craves.
Lord. I go, my lord.
Cle. Welcome is peace, if he on peace consist; If wars, we are unable to resist.
Enter PERICLES, with Attendants. Per. Lord governor, for so we hear you are, Let not our ships and number of our men Be, like a beacon fir'd, to amaze your eyes. We have heard your miseries as far as Tyre, And seen the desolation of your streets : Nor come we to add sorrow to your tears, But to relieve them of their heavy load; And these our ships you happily may think Are, like the Trojan horse, war-stuff'd within, With bloody views, expecting overthrow, Are stor'd with corn, to make your needy bread, And give them life, who are hunger-starv'd, half
All. The gods of Greece protect you! And we'll pray for you.
Rise, I pray you, rise; We do not look for reverence, but for love, And harbourage for ourself, our ships, and men. Cle. The which when any shall not gratify, Or pay you with unthankfulness in thought, Be it our wives, our children, or ourselves, The curse of heaven and men succeed their evils! Till when, (the which, I hope, shall ne'er be seen,) Your grace is welcome to our town and us. Per. Which welcome we'll accept; feast here a
Dio. O, 'tis too true.
Cle. But see what heaven can do! By this our Until our stars, that frown, lend us a smile. [Exeunt.
Gow. Here have you seen a mighty king
Enter at one door PERICLES, talking with CLEON; all the Train with them. Enter at another door, a Gentleman, with a letter to Pericles; Pericles shews the letter to Cleon: then gives the Messenger a reward, and knights him. Exeunt Pericles, Cleon, &c. severally.
Enter PERICLES, wet.
Per. Yet cease your ire, ye angry stars of heaven!
1 Fish. What, ho, Pilche!
2 Fish. Ho! come, and bring away the nets. 1 Fish. What Patch-breech, I say!
3 Fish. What say you, master?
1 Fish. Look how thou stirrest now! come away, or I'll fetch thee with a wannion.
3 Fish. 'Faith, master, I am thinking of the men that were cast away before us, even now.
1 Fish. Alas, poor souls, it grieved my heart to hear what pitiful cries they made to us, to help them, when, well-a-day, we could scarce help ourselves.
say, they are half fish, half flesh: a plague on them, they ne'er come, but I look to be washed. Master, I marvel how the fishes live in the sea.
Gow. Good Helicane hath staid at home,
Ne aught escapen but himself;
1 Fish. Die, quoth-a? Now gods forbid! I have a gown here; come, put it on; keep thee warm. Now, afore me, a handsome fellow! Come, thou shalt go home, and we'll have flesh for holidays, flap-jacks; and thou shalt be welcome. fish for fasting-days, and moreo'er, puddings and
Per. I thank you, sir.
[not beg. 2 Fish. Hark you, my friend, you said you could Per. I did but crave.
2 Fish. But crave? Then I'll turn craver too, and so I shall 'scape whipping.
Per. Why, are all your beggars whipped then! 2 Fish. O, not all, my friend, not all; for if all your beggars were whipped, I would wish no better office, than to be beadle. But, master, I'll go draw up the net. [Exeunt two of the Fishermen. Per. How well this honest mirth becomes their labour !
1 Fish. Hark you, sir! do you know where you Per. Not well. [are? 1 Fish. Why, I'll tell you: this is called Pentapolis, and our king, the good king Simonides.
Per. The good king Simonides, do you call him? 1 Fish. Ay, sir; and he deserves to be so called, for his peaceable reign, and good government.
Per. He is a happy king, since from his subjects
3 Fish. Nay, master, said not I as much, when I saw the porpus, how he bounced and tumbled hoy
1 Fish. Why, as men do a-land; the great ones eat up the little ones: I can compare our rich misers to nothing so fitly as to a whale; 'a plays and tumbles, driving the poor fry before him, and at last devours them all at a mouthful. Such whales have I heard on a'the land, who never leave gaping, till they've swallow'd the whole parish, church, steeple, bells, and all.
Per. A pretty moral.
3 Fish. But, master, if I had been the sexton, I would have been that day in the belfry.
2 Fish. Why, man?
3 Fish. Because he should have swallowed me too: and when I had been in his belly, I would have kept such a jangling of the bells, that be should never have left, till he cast bells, steeple, Simonides were of my mind— church, and parish, up again. But if the good king
that rob the bee of her honey.
Per. How from the finny subject of the sea
2 Fish. Honest! good fellow, what's that? if it
Per. A man, whom both the waters and the wind,
1 Fish. No, friend, cannot you beg? here's them in our country of Greece, gets more with begging, than we can do with working.
2 Fish. Canst thou catch any fishes then?
2 Fish. Nay, then, thou wilt starve sure; for here's nothing to be got now-a-days, unless thou can'st fish for't.
He gains the name of good, by his government. How far is his court distant from this shore?
1 Fish. Marry, sir, half a day's journey; and I'll tell you, he hath a fair daughter, and to-morrow is her birth-day; and there are princes and knights come from all parts of the world, to just and tourney for her love.
Per. Did but my fortunes equal my desires, I'd wish to make one there.
1 Fish. O, sir, things must be as they may; and what a man cannot get, he may lawfully deal for
his wife's soul.
Re-enter the two Fishermen, drawing up a net. 2 Fish. Help, master, help! here's a fish hangs in the net, like a poor man's right in the law; 'twill hardly come out. Ha! bots on't, 'tis come at last, and 'tis turned to a rusty armour. [see it. Per. An armour, friends! I pray you, let me Thanks, fortune, yet, that after all my crosses, Thou giv'st me somewhat to repair myself: And, though it was mine own, part of mine heri
tage, Which my dead father did bequeath to me, With this strict charge, (even as he left his life,) Keep it, my Pericles, it hath been a shield 'Twixt me and death; (and pointed to this brace:) For that it sav'd me, keep it; in like necessity, Which gods protect thee from! it may defend thee. It kept where I kept, I so dearly lov'd it; Till the rough seas, that spare not any man, Took it in rage, though calm'd, they give't again: I thank thee for't; my shipwreck's now no ill, Since I have here my father's gift by will. 1 Fish. What mean you, sir?
Per. To beg of you, kind friends, this coat of For it was sometime target to a king; I know it by this mark. He lov'd me dearly, And for his sake, I wish the having of it; And that you'd guide me to your sovereign's court, Where with't I may appear a gentleman; And if that ever my low fortunes better, I'll pay your bounties; till then, rest your debtor. 1 Fish. Why, wilt thou tourney for the lady? Per. I'll shew the virtue I have borne in arms. 1 Fish. Why, do ye take it, and the gods give thee good on't!
2 Fish. Ay, but hark you, my friend; 'twas we that made ар this garment through the rough seams of the waters: there are certain condolements, certain vails. I hope, sir, if you thrive, you'll remember from whence you had it.
Per. Believe't, I will.
Now, by your furtherance, I am cloth'd in steel;
2 Fish. We'll sure provide: thou shalt have my best gown to make thee a pair; and I'll bring thee to the court myself.
Per. Then honour be but a goal to my will; This day I'll rise, or else add ill to ill. [Exeunt. SCENE II.-The same. A public way, or platform, leading to the lists. A pavilion by the side of it, for the reception of the King, Princess, Lords, &c. Enter SIMONIDES, THAISA, Lords, and Attendants. Sim. Are the knights ready to begin the triumph? 1 Lord. They are, my liege; And stay your coming to present themselves. Sim. Return them, we are ready; and our daughter,
In honour of whose birth these triumphs are,
Sim. 'Tis fit it should be so; for princes are A model, which heaven makes like to itself: As jewels lose their glory, if neglected, So princes their renown, if not respected. 'Tis now your honour, daughter, to explain The labour of each knight, in his device. [form. Thai. Which, to preserve mine honour, I'll perEnter a Knight; he passes over the stage, and his Squire presents his shield to the Princess.
Sim. Who is the first that doth prefer himself? Thai. A knight of Sparta, my renowned father; And the device he bears upon his shield Is a black Æthiop, reaching at the sun; The word, Lux tua vita mihi.
Sim. He loves you well, that holds his life of you. (The second Knight passes.). Who is the second, that presents himself? Thai. A prince of Macedon, my royal father; And the device he bears upon his shield Is an arm'd knight, that's conquer'd by a lady: The motto thus, in Spanish, Piu per dulçura que per fuerça. (The third Knight passes.) Sim. And what's the third? Thai. And his device, a wreath of chivalry: The word, Me pompa provexit apex. (The fourth Knight passes.)
The third of Antioch;
Sim. What is the fourth? Thai. A burning torch, that's turned upside down; The word, Quod me alit, me extinguit.
Sim. Which shews, that beauty hath his power and will,
Which can as well inflame, as it can kill.
(The sixth Knight passes.) Sim. And what's the sixth and last, which the knight himself
With such a graceful courtesy deliver'd?
Sim. A pretty moral;
From the dejected state wherein he is,
1 Lord. He had need meau better than his outward shew
Can any way speak in his just commend:
3 Lord. And on set purpose let his armour rust Until this day, to scour it in the dust.
Sim. Opinion's but a fool, that makes us scan The outward habit by the inward man. But stay, the knights are coming; we'll withdraw Into the gallery. [Exeunt. (Great shouts, and all cry, The mean knight.) SCENE III.-The same. A Hall of State. A Banquet prepared. Enter SIMONIDES, THAISA, Lords, Knights, and Attendants.
In framing artists, art hath thus decreed,
(For, daughter, so you are,) here take your place :
Some other is more fit.
Of marriage, all the viands that I eat
A country gentleman;
Thai. To me he seems like diamond to glass. Per. Yon king's to me, like to my father's picture,
Which tells me, in that glory once he was;
Sim. Here, with a cup that's stor❜d unto the (As you do love, fill to your mistress lips,) We drink this health to you.
We thank your grace.
Sim. Yet pause a while;
Yon knight, methinks, doth sit too melancholy, As if the entertainment in our court
Had not a shew might countervail his worth. Note it not you, Thaisa?
What is it
To me, my father?
Are wonder'd at.
Therefore to make's entrance more sweet, here say,
Do as I bid you, or you'll move me else.
Thai. Now, by the gods, he could not please me better. (A side.) Sim. And further tell him, we desire to know, Of whence he is, his name and parentage.
Thai. The king my father, sir, has drunk to you.
Thai. And further he desires to know of you, Of whence you are, your name and parentage. Per. A gentleman of Tyre-(my name, Pericles;
My education being in arts and arms;)—
Here is a lady that wants breathing too:
And that their measures are as excellent.
Sim. Princes, it is too late to talk of love,
Antiochus from incest liv'd not free;
For which, the most high gods not minding longer
A fire from heaven came, and shrivell'd up
Esca. 'Twas very strange.
Hel. And yet but just; for though This king were great, his greatness was no guard To bar heaven's shaft, but sin had his reward. Esca. "Tis very true.
Enter Three Lords.
1 Lord. See, not a man in private conference, Or council, has respect with him but he.
[proof 2 Lord. It shall no longer grieve without re3 Lord. And curs'd be he that will not second it. 1 Lord. Follow me then: Lord Helicane, a word. Hel. With me? and welcome: Happy day, my lords. [top
1 Lord. Know, that our griefs are risen to the And now at length they overflow their banks. Hel. Your griefs, for what? wrong not the prince you love.
1 Lord. Wrong not yourself then, noble HeliBut if the prince do live, let us salute him, Or know what ground's made happy by his breath. If in the world he live, we'll seek him out; If in his grave he rest, we'll find him there; And be resolv'd, he lives to govern us, Or dead, gives cause to mourn his funeral, And leaves us to our free election.
2 Lord. Whose death's, indeed, the strongest is
And knowing this kingdom, if without a head,
That best know'st how to rule, and how to reign,
Hel. Try honour's cause; forbear your suffrages:
I shall with aged patience bear your yoke. But if I cannot win you to this love,
Go search like noblemen, like noble subjects,
1 Lord. To wisdom he's a fool that will not yield; And, since lord Helicane enjoineth us, We with our travels will endeavour it.
[hands; Hel. Then you love us, we you, and we'll clasp When peers thus knit, a kingdom ever stands.
SCENE V.-Pentapolis. A Room in the Palace. Enter SIMONIDES, reading a letter, the Knights meet him.
To her chamber, that it is impossible.
3 Knight. Though loath to bid farewell, we take our leaves. [Exeunt. Sim. So, [letter: They're well despatch'd; now to my daughter's She tells me here, she'll wed the stranger knight, Or never more to view nor day nor light. Mistress, 'tis well, your choice agrees with mine; I like that well:-nay, how absolute she's in't, Not minding whether I dislike or no! Well, I commend her choice;
And will no longer have it be delay'd.
Per. All fortune to the good Simonides!
Sim. To you as much, sir! I am beholden to you For your sweet music this last night: my ears, I do protest, were never better fed With such delightful pleasing harmony.
Per. It is your grace's pleasure to commend; Not my desert. Sim.
Sir, you are music's master.
A letter, that she loves the knight of Tyre?
That never aim'd so high, to love your daughter, But bent all offices to honour her.
Sim. Thou hast bewitch'd my daughter, and thou A villain.
Per. By the gods, I have not, sir. Never did thought of mine levy offence; Nor never did my actions yet commence A deed might gain her love, or your displeasure. Sim. Traitor, thou liest.
Sim. Ay, traitor, sir. Per. Even in his throat, (unless it be the king,) That calls me traitor, I return the lie. Sim. Now, by the gods, I do applaud his courage. (Aside.)
Per. My actions are as noble as my thoughts, That never relish'd of a base descent.
I came unto your court, for honour's cause,
And he that otherwise accounts of me,
Here comes my daughter, she can witness it. Enter THAISA.
Per. Then, as you are as virtuous as fair, Resolve your angry father, if my tongue Did e'er solicit, or my hand subscribe To any syllable that made love to you? Who takes offence at that would make me glad? Thai. Why, sir, say if you had, Sim. Yea, mistress, are you so peremptory?I am glad of it with all my heart. (Aside.) I'll tame I'll bring you in subjection.[you; Will you, not having my consent, bestow Your love and your affections on a stranger? Who, for aught I know to the contrary, Or think, may be as great in blood as I.) (Aside.) Hear therefore, mistress; frame your will to mine,And you, sir, hear you.-Either be rul'd by me, Or I will make you-man and wife. Nay, come; your hands and lips must seal it too.And being join'd, I'll thus your hopes destroy;And for a further grief,-God give you joy! What, are you both pleas'd?
Yes, please your majesty. Sim. It pleaseth me so well, I'll see you wed; Then, with what haste you can, get you to bed.
Gow. Now sleep yslaked hath the rout; No din but snores, the house about, Made louder by the o'er-fed breast Of this most pompous marriage feast. The cat, with eyne of burning coal, Now couches 'fore the mouse's hole; And crickets sing at th' oven's mouth, As the blither for their drouth. Hymen hath brought the bride to bed, Where, by the loss of maidenhead, A babe is moulded;-Be attent, And time that is so briefly spent, With your fine fancies quaintly eche; What's dumb in shew, I'll plain with speech. (Dumb shew.) Enter PERICLES and SIMONIDES at one door, with Attendants; a Messenger meets them, kneels, and gives Pericles a letter. Pericles shews it to Simonides; the Lords kneel to the former. Then enter THAISA with child, and LYCHORIDA. Simonides shews his daughter the letter; she rejoices: she and Pericles take leave of her Father, and depart. Then Simonides, &c. retire.
Gow. By many a dearn and painful perch,