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I have known my husband; yet my husband knows | That's seal'd in approbation?—You, lord Escalus,
Duke. For the benefit of silence, would thou wert so too.
F. Peter. Would he were here, my lord; for he indeed,
Lucio. Well, my lord.
Hath set the women on to this complaint:
Duke. This is no witness for lord Angelo.
Duke. Go, do it instantly. - [Exit Provost.
Will leave you; but stir not you, till you have well
Escal. My lord, we'll do it thoroughly. —[Exit. DUKE.] Signior Lucio, did not you say, you knew that friar Lodowick to be a dishonest person?
Lucio. Cucullus non facit monachum: honest in nothing, but in his clothes; and one that hath spoke most villainous speeches of the duke.
Escal. We shall entreat you to abide here till he come, and enforce them against him: we shall find this friar a notable fellow.
That ever he knew me.
Charges she more han me?
No? you say, your husband.
Ang. This is a strange abuse:-Let's see thy face. Mar. My husband bids me; now I will unmask. [Unveiling.
This is that face, thou cruel Angelo,
Know you this woman?
Sirrah, no more.
Lucio. Enough, my lord.
Lucio. Carnally, she says.
And, five years since, there was some speech of
Betwixt myself and her; which was broke off,
I never spake with her, saw her, nor heard from her,
As there comes light from heaven, and words from breath,
As there is sense in truth, and truth in virtue,
A marble monument!
I did but smile till now;
But instruments of some more mightier member,
Lucio. As any in Vienna, on my word.
Escal. Call that same Isabel here once again; [To an Attendant.] I would speak with her: Pray you, my lord, give me leave to question; you shall see how I'll handle her.
Lucio. Not better than he, by her own report.
Lucio. Marry, sir, I think, if you handled her privately, she would sooner confess: perchance, publickly she'll be ashamed.
Re-enter Officers, with ISABELLA; the DUKE, in the
Escal. I will go darkly to work with her.
Lucio. That's the way; for women are light at midnight.
Escal. Come on mistress: [To ISABELLA.] here's a gentlewoman denies all that you have said. Lucio. My lord, here comes the rascal I spoke of; here with the provost.
speak not you to
Escal. In very good time: him, till we call upon you.
Escal. Come, sir: Did you set these women on to slander lord Angelo? they have confess'd you did. Duke. 'Tis false.
Escal. How! know you where you are?
Be sometime honour'd for his burning throne:
Look, you speak justly.
Duke. Boldly, at least: But, O, poor souls,
Lucio. This is the rascal; this is he I spoke of.
Is't not enough, thou hast suborn'd these womer,
Escal. Slander to the state! Away with him to
Lucio. O did you so? And do you remember what you said of the duke?
Duke. Most notedly, sir.
Lucio. Do you, so, sir? And was the duke a flesh-monger, a fool, and a coward, as you then reported him to be?
Duke. You must, sir, change persons with me, ere you make that my report: you, indeed, spoke so of him; and much more, much worse.
Lucio. O thou damnable fellow! Did not I pluck thee by the nose, for thy speeches?
Duke. I protest, I love the duke, as I love myself. Ang. Hark! how the villain would close now, after his treasonable abuses.
Come hither, Isabel:
Ang. What can you vouch against him, signior Your friar is now your prince: As I was then Lucio? Advértising, and holy to your business, Is this the man that you did tell us of? Not changing heart with habit, I am still Attorney'd at your service.
Lucio. 'Tis he, my lord. Come hither good-man bald-pate: Do you know me ?
Duke. I remember you, sir, by the sound of your voice I met you at the prison, in the absence of the duke.
Escal. Such a fellow is not to be talk'd withal :Away with him to prison : Where is the provost ? —Away with him to prison; lay bolts enough upon him: let him speak no more: - Away with those giglots too, and with the other confederate companion. [The Provost lays hands on the DUKE.
Duke. Stay, sir; stay awhile.
Ang. What! resists he! Help him, Lucio. Lucio. Come, sir; come, sir; come, sir; foh, sir : Why, you bald-pated, lying rascal! you must be hooded, must you? Show your knave's visage, with a pox to you! show your sheep-biting face, and be hang'd an hour! Will't not off?
[Pulls off the Friar's hood, and discovers the DUKE. Duke. Thou art the first knave, that e'er made a duke.
First, provost, let me bail these gentle three :
Lucio. This may prove worse than hanging. Duke. What you have spoke, I pardon; sit you down. [TO ESCALUS. We'll borrow place of him Sir, by your leave : [To ANGELO. Hast thou or word, or wit, or impudence, That yet can do thee office? If thou hast, Rely upon it till my tale be heard, And hold no longer out.
O my dread lord,
I should be guiltier than my guiltiness,
Come hither, Mariana: Say, wast thou e'er contracted to this woman? Ang. I was, my lord.
Duke. Go take her hence, and marry her, in-
Do you the office, friar; which consummate,
Re-enter ANGELO, MARIANA, PETER, and Provost.
And choke your good to come: for his possessions,
[Kneeling. You do but lose your labour; Now, sir, [to LUCIO.]
Sweet Isabel, take
Mari. O, my good lord!
Duke. Against all sense you do impórtune her:
Duke. He dies for Claudio's death.
Most bounteous sir, [Kneeling.
Look, if it please you, on this man condemn'd,
His act did not o'ertake his bad intent;
Merely, my lord.
Duke. Your suit's unprofitable; stand up, I say.I have bethought me of another fault : Provost, how came it, Claudio was beheaded At an unusual hour?
It was commanded so. Duke. Had you a special warrant for the deed? Prov. No, my good lord; it was by private
Duke. For which I do discharge you of your office: Give up your keys.
Pardon me, noble lord:
His name is Barnardine.
Ang. I am sorry, that such sorrow I procure : And so deep sticks it in my penitent heart, That I crave death more willingly than mercy; 'Tis my deserving, and I do entreat it.
Re-enter Provost, BARNARDINE, CLAUDIO, and
This, my lord.
For better times to come: - Friar, advise him ;
I leave him to your hand. What muffled fellow's that?
Is he pardon'd; And, for your lovely sake,
I find an apt remission in myself:
And yet here's one in place I cannot pardon: ·
You, sirrah, [to Lucio.] that knew me for a fool, a coward,
One all of luxury, an ass, a madman;
Lucio. 'Faith, my lord, I spoke it but according to the trick: If you will hang me for it, you may, but I had rather it would please you, I might be whipp'd. Duke. Whipp'd first, sir, and hang'd after, Proclaim it, provost, round about the city; If any woman's wrong'd by this lewd fellow, (As I have heard him swear himself, there's one Whom he begot with child,) let her appear, And he shall marry her: the nuptial finish'd, Let him be whipp'd and hang'd.
Lucio. I beseech your highness, do not marry me to a whore! Your highness said even now, I made you a duke; good my lord, do not recompense me, in making me a cuckold.
Duke. Upon mine honour, thou shalt marry her Thy slanders I forgive; and therewithal Remit thy other forfeits :Take him to prison: And see our pleasure herein executed.
Lucio. Marrying a punk, my lord, is pressing te death, whipping, and hanging.
Duke. Slandering a prince deserves it.
She, Claudio, that you wrong'd, look you restore. -→→
SCENE I. Before Leonato's House. Enter LEONATO, HERO, BEATRICE, and others, with a Messenger.
Leon. I learn in this letter, that Don Pedro of Arragon comes this night to Messina.
Mess. He is very near by this; he was not three leagues off when I left him.
Leon. How many gentlemen have you lost in this action?
Mess. But few of any sort, and none of name. Leon. A victory is twice itself, when the achiever brings home full numbers. I find here, that Don Pedro hath bestowed much honour on a young Florentine, called Claudio.
HERO, daughter to Leonato.
Mess. Much deserved on his part, and equally remembered by Don Pedro: He hath borne himself beyond the promise of his age; doing, in the figure of a lamb, the feats of a lion: he hath, indeed, better bettered expectation, than you must expect of me to tell you how.
Leon. He hath an uncle here in Messina will be very much glad of it.
Mess. I have already delivered him letters, and there appears much joy in him; even so much, that joy could not show itself modest enough, without a badge of bitterness.
Leon. Did he break out into tears?
Mess. In great measure.
Leon. A kind overflow of kindness: There are
no faces truer than those that are so washed. How
gentlewomen attending on Herɔ.
Messengers, Watch, and Attendants
much better is it to weep at joy, than to joy at weeping?
Beat. I pray you, is signior Montanto returned from the wars, or no?
Mess. I know none of that name, lady; there was none such in the army of any sort.
Leon. What is he that you ask for, niece?
Hero. My cousin means signior Benedick of Padua. Mess. O, he is returned, and as pleasant as ever he was.
Beat. He set up his bills here in Messina, and challenged Cupid at the flight: and my uncle's fool, reading the challenge, subscribed for Cupid, and challenged him at the bird-bolt. I pray you, how many hath he killed and eaten in these wars? But how many hath he killed? for, indeed, I promised to eat all of his killing.
Leon. Faith, niece, you tax signior Benedick too much; but he'll be meet with you, I doubt it not. Mess. He hath done good service, lady, in these
certain, I am loved of all ladies, only you excepted : and I would I could find in my heart that I had not a hard heart for, truly, I love none.
Bent. A dear happiness to women; they would else have been troubled with a pernicious suitor. I thank God, and my cold blood, am of your humour for that; I had rather hear my dog bark at a crow, than a man swear he loves me.
Bene. I noted her not but I looked on her.
Bene. Do you question me as an honest man should do, for my simple true judgment; or would you have me speak after my custom, as being a professed tyrant to their sex?
Claud. No, I pray thee, speak in sober judgment. Bene. Why, i'faith, methinks she is too low for a high praise, too brown for a fair praise, and too little for a great praise: only this commendation I can afford her; that were she other than she is, she were unhandsome; and being no other but as she is, I do not like her.
Cland. Thou thinkest I am in sport; thee, tell me truly how thou likest her.
Bene. Would you buy her, that you inquire after her?
Claud. Can the world buy such a jewel? Bene. Yea, and a case to put it into. But speak you this with a sad brow? or do you play the flouting Jack; to tell us Cupid is a good hare-finder, and Vulcan a rare carpenter? Come, in what key shall a man take you, to go in the song?
Claud. In mine eye, she is the sweetest lady that ever I looked on.
Bene. I can see yet without spectacles, and I see no such matter: there's her cousin, an she were not possessed with a fury, exceeds her as much in beauty, as the first of May doth the last of December. But I hope, you have no intent to turn husband; have you?