Pericles Prince of Tyre
by William Shakespeare [Clark edition]
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This etext was prepared by Scott Arndt.


by William Shakespeare


ANTIOCHUS, king of Antioch. PERICLES, prince of Tyre. HELICANUS, ESCANES, two lords of Tyre. SIMONIDES, kIng of Pentapolis. CLEON, governor of Tarsus. LYSIMACHUS, governor of Mytilene. CERIMON, a lord of Ephesus. THALIARD, a lord of Antioch. PFIILEMON, servant to Cerimon. LEONINE, servant to Dionyza. Marshal. A Pandar. BOULT, his servant. The Daughter of Antiochus. DIONYZA, wife to Cleon. THAISA, daughter to Simonides. MARINA, daughter to Pericles and Thaisa. LYCHORIDA, nurse to Marina. A Bawd. Lords, Knights, Gentlemen, Sailors, Pirates, Fishermen, and Messengers. DIANA. GOWER, as Chorus.

SCENE: Dispersedly in various countries.


[Enter GOWER.]

[Before the palace of Antioch.]

To sing a song that old was sung, From ashes ancient Gower is come; Assuming man's infirmities, To glad your ear, and please your eyes. It hath been sung at festivals, On ember-eves and holy-ales; And lords and ladies in their lives Have read it for restoratives: The purchase is to make men glorious; Et bonum quo antiquius, eo melius. If you, born in these latter times, When wit's more ripe, accept my rhymes, And that to hear an old man sing May to your wishes pleasure bring, I life would wish, and that I might Waste it for you, like taper-light. This Antioch, then, Antiochus the Great Built up, this city, for his chiefest seat; The fairest in all Syria, I tell you what mine authors say: This king unto him took a fere, Who died and left a female heir, So buxom, so blithe, and full of face, As heaven had lent her all his grace; With whom the father liking took, And her to incest did provoke: Bad child; worse father! to entice his own To evil should be done by none: But custom what they did begin Was with long use account no sin. The beauty of this sinful dame Made many princes thither frame, To seek her as a bed-fellow, In marriage-pleasures play-fellow: Which to prevent he made a law, To keep her still, and men in awe, That whoso ask'd her for his wife, His riddle told not, lost his life: So for her many a wight did die, As yon grim looks do testify. What now ensues, to the judgement your eye I give, my cause who lest can justify.


SCENE I. Antioch. A room in the palace.

[Enter ANTIOCHUS, PRINCE PERICLES, and followers.]

ANTIOCHUS. Young prince of Tyre, you have at large received The danger of the task you undertake.

PERICLES. I have, Antiochus, and, with a soul Embolden'd with the glory of her praise, Think death no hazard in this enterprise.

ANTIOCHUS. Bring in our daughter, clothed like a bride, For the embracements even of Jove himself; At whose conception, till Lucina reign'd, Nature this dowry gave, to glad her presence, The senate-house of planets all did sit, To knit in her their best perfections.

[Music. Enter the Daughter of Antiochus.]

PERICLES See where she comes, apparell'd like the spring, Graces her subjects, and her thoughts the king Of every virtue gives renown to men! Her face the book of praises, where is read Nothing but curious pleasures, as from thence Sorrow were ever razed, and testy wrath Could never be her mild companion. You gods that made me man, and sway in love, That have inflamed desire in my breast To taste the fruit of yon celestal tree, Or die in the adventure, be my helps, As I am son and servant to your will, To compass such a boundless happiness!

ANTIOCHUS. Prince Pericles, —

PERICLES. That would be son to great Antiochus.

ANTIOCHUS. Before thee stands this fair Hesperides, With golden fruit, but dangerous to be touch'd; For death-like dragons here affright thee hard: Her face, like heaven, enticeth thee to view Her countless glory, which desert must gain; And which, without desert, because thine eye Presumes to reach, all thy whole heap must die. Yon sometimes famous princes, like thyself, Drawn by report, adventurous by desire, Tell thee, with speechless tongues and semblance pale, That without covering, save yon field of stars, Here they stand Martyrs, slain in Cupid's wars; And with dead cheeks advise thee to desist For going on death's net, whom none resist.

PERICLES. Antiochus, I thank thee, who hath taught My frail mortality to know itself, And by those fearful objects to prepare This body, like to them, to what I must; For death remember'd should be like a mirror, Who tells us life 's but breath, to trust it error. I'll make my will then, and, as sick men do Who know the world, see heaven, but, feeling woe, Gripe not at earthly joys as erst they did; So I bequeath a happy peace to you And all good men, as every prince should do; My riches to the earth from whence they came; But my unspotted fire of love to you.

[To the daughter of Antiochus.]

Thus ready for the way of life or death, I wait the sharpest blow, Antiochus.

ANTIOCHUS. Scorning advice, read the conclusion, then: Which read and not expounded, 'tis decreed, As these before thee thou thyself shalt bleed.

DAUGHTER. Of all say'd yet, mayst thou prove prosperous! Of all say'd yet, I wish thee happiness!

PERICLES Like a bold champion, I assume THe lists, Nor ask advice of any other thought But faithfulness and courage.

[He reads the riddle.]

I am no viper, yet I feed On mother's flesh which did me breed. I sought a husband, in which labour I found that kindness in a father: He's father, son, and husband mild; I mother, wife, and yet his child. How they may be, and yet in two, As you will live, resolve it you. Sharp physic is the last: but, O you powers That give heaven countless eyes to view men's acts, Why cloud they not their sights perpetually, If this be true, which makes me pale to read it? Fair glass of light, I loved you, and could still,

[Takes hold of the hand of the Princess.]

Were not this glorious casket stored with ill: But I must tell you, now my thoughts revolt; For he's no man on whom perfections wait That, knowing sin within, will touch the gate, You are a fair viol, and your sense the strings; Who, finger'd to make man his lawful music, Would draw heaven down, and all the gods to hearken; But being play'd upon before your time, Hell only danceth at so harsh a chime. Good sooth, I care not for you.

ANTIOCHUS. Prince Pericles, touch not, upon thy life, For that's an article within our law, As dangerous as the rest. Tour time's expired: Either expound now, or receive your sentence.

PERICLES. Great king, Few love to hear the sins they love to act; 'Twould braid yourself too near for me to tell it. Who has a book of all that monarchs do, He's more secure to keep it shut than shown: For vice repeated is like the wandering wind, Blows dust in others' eyes, to spread itself; And yet the end of all is bought thus dear, The breath is gone, and the sore eyes see clear To stop the air would hurt them. The blind mole casts Copp'd hills towards heaven, to tell the earth is throng'd By man's oppression; and the poor worm doth die for't. Kind are earth's gods; in vice their law's their will; And if Jove stray, who dares say Jove doth ill? It is enough you know; and it is fit, What being more known grows worse, to smother it. All love the womb that their first bred, Then give my tongue like leave to love my head.

ANTIOCHUS.[Aside] Heaven, that I had thy head! he has found the meaning: But I will gloze with him. — Young prince of Tyre. Though by the tenour of our strict edict, Your exposition misinterpreting, We might proceed to cancel of your days; Yet hope, succeeding from so fair a tree As your fair self, doth tune us otherwise: Forty days longer we do respite you; If by which time our secret be undone, This mercy shows we'll joy in such a son: And until then your entertain shall be As doth befit our honour and your worth.

[Exeunt all but Pericles.]

PERACLES. How courtesy would seem to cover sin, When what is done is like an hypocrite, The which is good in nothing but in sight! If it be true that I interpret false, Then were it certain you were not so bad As with foul incest to abuse your soul; Where now you're both a father and a son, By your untimely claspings with your child, Which pleasure fits an husband, not a father; And she an eater of her mother's flesh, By the defiling of her parent's bed; And both like serpents are, who though they feed On sweetest flowers, yet they poison breed. Antioch, farewell! for wisdom sees, those men Blush not in actions blacker than the night, Will shun no course to keep them from the light. One sin, I know, another doth provoke; Murder's as near to lust as flame to smoke: Poison and treason are the hands of sin, Ay, and the targets, to put off the shame: Then, lest my life be cropp'd to keep you clear, By flight I 'II shun the danger which I fear.


[Re-enter Antiochus.]

ANTIOCHUS. He gath found the meaning, for which we mean To have his head. He must not live to trumpet forth my infamy, Nor tell the world Antiochus doth sin In such a loathed manner; And therefore instantly this prince must die; For by his fall my honour must keep high. Who attends us there?

[Enter Thaliard.]

THALIARD. Doth your highness call?

ANTIOCHUS. Thaliard, You are of our chamber, and our mind partakes Her private actions to your secrecy; And for your faithfulness we will advance you. Thaliard, behold, here's poison, and here's gold; We hate the prince of Tyre, and thou must kill him: It fits thee not to ask the reason why, Because we Bid it. Say, is it done?

THALIARD. My lord, Tis done.


[Enter a Messenger.]

Let your breath cool yourself, telling your haste.

MESSENGER. My lord, prlnce Pericles is fled.


ANTIOCHUS. As thou Wilt live, fly after: and like an arrow shot From a well-experienced archer hits the mark His eye doth level at, so thou ne'er return Unless thou say 'Prince Pericles is dead.'

THALIARD. My lord, If I can get him within my pistol's length, I'll make him sure enough: so, farewell to your highness.

ANTIOCHUS. Thaliard! adieu!

[Exit Thaliard.]

Till Pericles be dead, My heart can lend no succour to my head.


SCENE II. Tyre. A room in the palace.

[Enter Pericles.]

PERICLES. [To Lords without.] Let none disturb us. — Why should this change of thoughts, The sad companion, dull-eyed melancholy, Be my so used a guest as not an hour, In the day's glorious walk, or peaceful night, The tomb where grief should sleep, can breed me quiet? Here pleasures court mine eyes, and mine eyes shun them, And danger, which I fear'd, is at Antioch, Whose arm seems far too short to hit me here: Yet neither pleasure's art can joy my spirits, Nor yet the other's distance comfort me. Then it is thus: the passions of the mind, That have their first conception by mis-dread Have after-nourishment and life by care; And what was first but fear what might he done, Grows elder now and cares it be not done. And so with me: the great Antiochus, 'Gainst whom I am too little to contend, Since he 's so great can make his will his act, Will think me speaking, though I swear to silence; Nor boots it me to say I honour him. If he suspect I may dishonour him: And what may make him blush in being known, He'll stop the course by which it might be known; With hostile forces he'11 o'erspread the land, And with the ostent of war will look so huge, Amazement shall drive courage from the state; Our men be vanquish'd ere they do resist, And subjects punish'd that ne'er thought offence: Which care of them, not pity of myself, Who am no more but as the tops of trees, Which fence the roots they grow by and defend them, Makes both my body pine and soul to languish, And punish that before that he would punish.

[Enter Helicanus, with other Lords.]

FIRST LORD. Joy and all comfort in your sacred breast!

SECOND LORD. And keep your mind, till you return to us, Peaceful and comfortable!

HELICANUS. Peace, peace, and give experience tongue. They do abuse the king that flatter him: For flattery is the bellows blows up sin; The thing the which is flatter'd, but a spark, To which that blast gives heat and stronger glowing: Whereas reproof, obedient and in order, Fits kings, as they are men, for they may err. When Signior Sooth here does proclaim a peace, He flatters you, makes war upon your life. Prince, pardon me, or strike me, if you please; I cannot be much lower than my knees.

PERICLES. All leave us else; but let your cares o'erlook What shipping and what lading is in our haven, And then return to us.

[Exeunt Lords.]

Helicanus, thou Hast moved us: what seest thou in our looks?

HELICANUS. An angry brow, dread lord.

PERICLES. If there be such a dart in princes' frowns, How durst thy tongue move anger to our face?

HELICANUS. How dare the plants look up to heaven, from whence They have their nourishment?

PERICLES. Thou know'st I have power To take thy life from thee.

HELICANUS. [Kneeling.] I have ground the axe myself; Do you but strike the blow.

PERICLES. Rise, prithee, rise. Sit down: thou art no flatterer: I thank thee for it; and heaven forbid That kings should let their ears hear their faults hid! Fit counsellor and servant for a prince, Who by thy wisdom makest a prince thy servant, What wouldst thou have me do?

HELICANUS. To bear with patience Such griefs as you yourself do lay upon yourself.

PERICLES. Thou speak'st like a physician, Helicanus, That minister'st a potion unto me That thou wouldst tremble to receive thyself. Attend me, then: I went to Antioch, And there as thou know'st, against the face of death, I sought the purchase of a glorious beauty, From whence an issue I might propagate, Are arms to princes, and bring joys to subjects. Her face was to mine eye beyond all wonder; The rest — hark in thine ear — as black as incest: Which by my knowledge found, the sinful father Seem'd not to strike, but smooth: but thou know'st this, 'Tis time to fear when tyrants seem to kiss. Which fear so grew in me, I hither fled, Under the covering of a careful night, Who seem'd my good protector; and, being here, Bethought me what was past, what might succeed. I knew him tyrannous; and tyrants' fears Decrease not, but grow faster than the years: And should he doubt it, as no doubt he doth, That I should open to the listening air How many worthy princes' bloods were shed, To keep his bed of blackness unlaid ope, To lop that doubt, he'll fill this land with arms, And make pretence of wrong that I have done him; When all, for mine, if I may call offence, Must feel war's blow, who spares not innocence: Which love to all, of which thyself art one, Who now reprovest me for it, —

HELICANUS. Alas, sir!

PERICLES. Drew sleep out of mine eyes, blood from my cheeks, Musings into my mind, with thousand doubts How I might stop this tempest ere it came; And finding little comfort to relieve them, I thought it princely charity to grieve them.

HELICANUS. Well, my lord, since you have given me leave to speak, Freely will I speak. Antiochus you fear, And justly too, I think, you fear the tyrant, Who either by public war or private treason Will take away your life. Therefore, my lord, go travel for a while, Till that his rage and anger be forgot, Or till the Destinies do cut his thread of life. Your rule direct to any; if to me, Day serves not light more faithful than I'll be.

PERICLES. I do not doubt thy faith; But should he wrong my liberties in my absence?

HELCANUS. We'll mingle our bloods together in the earth, From whence we had our being and our birth.

PERICLES. Tyre, I now look from thee then, and to Tarsus Intend my travel, where I'll hear from thee; And by whose letters I'll dispose myself. The care I had and have of subjects' good On thee I lay, whose wisdom's strength can bear it. I'll take thy word for faith, not ask thine oath: Who shuns not to break one will sure crack both: But in our orbs we'll live so round and safe, That time of both this truth shall ne'er convince, Thou show'dst a subject's shine, I a true prince.


SCENE III. Tyre. An ante-chamber in the Palace.

[Enter Thaliard.]

THALIARD. So, this is Tyre, and this the court. Here must I Kill King Pericles; and if I do it not, I 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 't; for if a king bid a man be a villain, he's bound by the indenture of his oath to be one. Hush! here come the lords of Tyre.

[Enter Helicanus and Escanes, with other Lords of Tyre.]

HELICANUS. You shall not need, my fellow peers of Tyre, Further to question me of your king's departure: His seal'd commission, left in trust with me, Doth speak sufficiently he 's gone to travel.

THALIARD. [Aside.] How! the king gone!

HELICANUS. If further yet you will be satisfied, Why, as it were unlicensed of your loves, He would depart, I 'II give some light unto you. Being at Antioch —

THALIARD. [Aside.] What from Antioch?

HELICANUS. Royal Antiochus — on what cause I know not Took some displeasure at him; at least he judged so: And doubting lest that he had err'd or sinn'd, To show his sorrow, he 'ld correct himself; So puts himself unto the shipman's toil, With whom each minute threatens life or death.

THALIARD. [Aside.] Well, I perceive I shall not be hang'd now, although I would; But since he 's gone, the king's seas must please He 'scaped the land, to perish at the sea. I 'll present myself. Peace to the lords of Tyre!

HELICANUS. Lord Thaliard from Antiochus is welcome.

THALIARD. From him I come With message unto princely Pericles; But since my landing I have understood Your lord has betook himself to unknown travels, My message must return from whence it came.

HELICANUS. We have no reason to desire it, Commended to our master, not to us: Yet, ere you shall depart, this we desire, As friends to Antioch, we may feast in Tyre.


SCENE IV. Tarsus. A room in the Governor's house.

[Enter Cleon, the governor of Tarsus, with Dionyza, and others.]

CLEON. My Dionyza, shall we rest us here, And by relating tales of others' griefs, See if 'twill teach us to forqet our own?

DIONYZA. That were to blow at fire in hope to quench it; For who digs hills because they do aspire Throws down one mountain to cast up a higher. O my distressed lord, even such our griefs are; Here they're but felt, and seen with mischief's eyes, But like to groves, being topp'd, they higher rise.

CLEON. O Dionyza, Who wanteth food, and will not say he wants it, Or can conceal his hunger till he famish? Our tongues and sorrows do sound deep Our woes into the air; our eyes do weep, Till tongues fetch breath that may proclaim them louder; That, if heaven slumber while their creatures want, They may awake their helps to comfort them. I'll then discourse our woes, felt several years, And wanting breath to speak help me with tears.

DIONYZA. I'll do my best, sir.

CLEON. This Tarsus, o'er which I have the government, A city on whom plenty held full hand, For riches strew'd herself even in the streets; Whose towers bore heads so high they kiss'd the clouds, And strangers ne'er beheld but wonder'd at; Whose men and dames so jetted and adorn'd, Like one another's glass to trim them by: Their tables were stored full, to glad the sight, And not so much to feed on as delight; All poverty was scorn'd, and pride so great, The name of help grew odious to repeat.

DIONYZA. O, 'tis too true.

CLEON. But see what heaven can do! By this our change, These mouths, who but of late, earth, sea, and air, Were all too little to content and please, Although they gave their creatures in abundance, As houses are defiled for want of use, They are now starved for want of exercise: Those palates who, not yet two sumMers younger, Must have inventions to delight the taste, Would now be glad of bread, and beg for it: Those mothers who, to nousle up their babes, Thought nought too curious, are ready now To eat those little darlings whom they loved. So sharp are hunger's teeth, that man and wife Draw lots who first shall die to lengthen life: Here stands a lord, and there a lady weeping; Here many sink, yet those which see them fall Have scarce strength left to give them burial. Is not this true?

DIONYZA. Our cheeks and hollow eyes do witness it.

CLEON. O, let those cities that of plenty's cup And her prosperities so largely taste, With their superflous riots, hear these tears! The misery of Tarsus may be theirs.

[Enter a Lord.]

LORD. Where's the lord governor?

CLEON. 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.

CLEON. I thought as much. One sorrow never comes but brings an heir, That may succeed as his inheritor; And so in ours: some neighbouring nation, Taking advantage of our misery, Math stuff'd these hollow vessels with their power, To beat us down, the which are down already; And make a conquest of unhappy me, Whereas no glory's got to overcome.

LORD. That's the least fear; for, by the semblance Of their white flags display'd, they bring us peace, And come to us as favourers, not as foes.

CLEON. Thou speak'st like him's untutor'd to repeat: Who makes the fairest show means most deceit. But bring they what they will and what they can, What need we fear? The ground's the lowest, 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.


CLEON. Welcome is peace, if he on peace consist; If wars, we are unable to resist.

[Enter Pericles with Attendants.]

PERICLES. Lord governor, for so we hear you are, Let not our ships and number of our men Be like a beacon fired 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 was stuff'd within With bloody veins, expecting overthrow, Are stored with corn to make your needy bread, And give them life whom hunger starved half dead.

ALL. The gods of Greece protect you! And we'll pray for you.

PERICLES. Arise, I pray you, rise: We do not look for reverence, but for love, And harbourage for ourself, our ships, and men.

CLEON. 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.

PERICLES. Which welcome we'll accept; feast here awhile, Until our stars that frown lend us a smile.



[Enter Gower.]

GOWER. Mere have you seen a mighty king His child, I wis, to incest bring; A better prince and benign lord, That will prove awful both in deed word. Be quiet then as men should be, Till he hath pass'd necessity. I'll show you those in troubles reign, Losing a mite, a mountain gain. The good in conversation, To whom I give my benison, Is still at Tarsus, where each man Thinks all is writ he speken can; And, to remember what he does, Build his statue to make him glorious: But tidings to the contrary Are brought your eyes; what need speak I?


[Enter at one door Pericles talking with Cleon talking with CLEON; all the train with them. Enter at another door a Gentleman, with a letter to Pericles; Pericles shows the letter to Cleon; gives the Messenger a reward, and knights him. Exit Pericles at one door, and Cleon at another.]

Good Helicane, that stay'd at home. Not to eat honey like a drone From others' labours; for though he strive To killen bad, keep good alive; And to fulfil his prince' desire, Sends word of all that haps in Tyre: How Thaliard came full bent with sin And had intent to murder him; And that in Tarsus was not best Longer for him to make his rest. He, doing so, put forth to seas, Where when men been, there's seldom ease; For now the wind begins to blow; Thunder above and deeps below Make such unquiet, that the ship Should house him safe is wreck'd and split; And he, good prince, having all lost, By waves from coast to coast is tost: All perishen of man, of pelf, Ne aught escapen but himself; Till fortune, tired with doing bad, Threw him ashore, to give him glad: And here he comes. What shall be next, Pardon old Gower, — this longs the text.


SCENE I. Pentapolis. An open place by the sea-side.

[Enter Pericles, wet.]

PERICLES. Yet cease your ire, you angry stars of heaven! Wind, rain, and thunder, remember, earthly man Is but a substance that must yield to you; And I, as fits my nature, do obey you: Alas, the sea hath cast me on the rocks, Wash'd me from shore to shore, and left me breath Nothing to think on but ensuing death: Let it suffice the greatness of your powers To have bereft a prince of all his fortunes; And having thrown him from your watery grave, Here to have death in peace is all he'll crave.

[Enter three Fishermen.]

FIRST FISHERMAN. What, ho, Pilch!

SECOND FISHERMAN. Ha, come and bring away the nets!

FIRST FISHERMAN. What, Patch-breech, I say!

THIRD FISHERMAN. What say you, master?

FIRST FISHERMAN. Look how thou stirrest now! come away, or I'll fetch thee with a wanion.

THIRD FISHERMAN. 'Faith, master, I am thinking of the poor men that were cast away before us even now.

FIRST FISHERMAN. 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.

THIRD FISHERMAN. Nay, master, said not I as much when I saw the porpus how he bounced and tumbled? they say they're 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.

FIRST FISHERMAN. 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 o' the land, who never leave gaping till they they've swallowed the whole parish, church, steeple, bells, and all.

PERICLES. [Aside.] A pretty moral.

THIRD FISHERMAN. But, master, if I had been the sexton, I would have been that day in the belfry.


THIRD FISHERMAN. 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 he should never have left, till he cast bells, steeple, church, and parish, up again. But if the good King Simonides were of my mind, —

PERICLES. [Aside.] Simonides!

THIRD FISHERMAN. We would purge the land of these drones, that rob the bee of her honey.

PERICLES. [Aside.] How from the finny subjec of the sea These fishers tell the infirmities of men; And from their watery empire recollect All that may men approve or men detect! Peace be at your labour, honest fishermen.

SECOND FISHERMAN. Honest! good fellow, what's that; If it be a day fits you, search out of the calendar, and nobody look after it.

PERICLES. May see the sea hath cast upon your coast.

SECOND FISHERMAN. What a drunken knave was the sea to cast thee in our way!

PERICLES. A man whom both the waters and the wind, In that vast tennis-court, have made the ball For them to play upon, entreats you pity him; He asks of you, that never used to beg.

FIRST FISHERMAN. No, friend, cannot you beg? Here's them in our country of Greece gets more with begging than we can do with working.

SECOND FISHERMAN. Canst thou catch any fishes, then?

PERICLES. I never practised it.

SECOND FISHERMAN. Nay, then thou wilt starve, sure; for here's nothing to be got now-a-days, unless thou canst fish for 't.

PERICLES. What I have been I have forgot to know; But what I am, want teaches me to think on: A man throng'd up with cold: my veins are chill, And have no more of life than may suffice To give my tongue that heat to ask your help; Which if you shall refuse, when I am dead, For that I am a man, pray see me buried.

FIRST FISHERMAN. 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, fish for fasting-days, and moreo'er puddings and flap-jacks, and thou shalt be welcome.

PERICLES. I thank you, sir.

SECOND FISHERMAN. Hark you, my friend; you said you could not beg.

PERICLES. I did but crave.

SECOND FISHERMAN. But crave! Then I'll turn craver too, and so I shall 'scape whipping.

PERICLES. Why, are your beggars whipped, then?

SECOND FISHERMAN. 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.

[Exit with Third Fisherman.]

PERICLES. [Aside.] How well this honest mirth becomes their 1abour!

FIRST FISHERMAN. Hark you, sir, do you know where ye are?

PERICLES. Not well.

FIRST FISHERMAN. Why, I'll tell you: this is called Pentapolis, and our king the good Simonides.

PERICLES. The good King Simonides, do you call him?

FIRST FISHERMAN. Ay, sir; and he deserves so to be called for his peaceable reign and good government.

PERICLES. He is a happy king, since he gains from his subjects the name of good government. How far is his court distant from this shore?

FIRST FISHERMAN. 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.

PERICLES. Were my fortunes equal to my desires, I could wish to make one there.

FIRST FISHERMAN. O, sir, things must be as they may; and what a man cannot get, he may lawfully deal for — his wife' soul.

[Re-enter Second and Third Fishermen, drawing up a net.]

SECOND FISHERMAN. 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.

PERICLES. An armour, friends! I pray you, let me see it. Thanks, fortune, yet, that, after all my crosses, Thou givest me somewhat to repair myself, And though it was mine own, part of my heritage, 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 saved me, keep it; in like necessity — The which the gods protect thee from! — may defend thee.' It kept where I kept, I so dearly loved it; Till the rough seas, that spare not any man, Took it in rage, though calm'd have given't again: I thank thee for 't: my shipwreck now's no ill, Since I have here my father's gift in's will.

FIRST FISHERMAN. What mean you' sir?

PERICLES. To beg of you, kind friends, this coat of worth, For it was sometime target to a king; I know it by this mark. He loved me dearly, And for his sake I wish the having of it; And that you'ld guide me to your sovereign court, Where with it I may appear a gentleman; And if that ever my fortune's better, I'll pay your bounties; till then rest your debtor.

FIRST FISHERMAN. Why, wilt thou tourney for the lady?

PERICLES. I'll show the virtue I have borne in arms.

FIRST FISHERMAN. Why, do'e take it, and the gods give thee good on 't!

SECOND FISHERMAN. Ay, but hark you, my friend; 'twas we that made up 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.

PERICLES. Believe't I will. By your furtherance I am clothed in steel; And, spite of all the rapture of the sea, This jewel holds his building on my arm: Unto thy value I will mount myself Upon a courser, whose delightful steps Shall make the gazer joy to see him tread. Only, my friend, I yet am unprovided Of a pair of bases.

SECOND FISHERMAN. We'll sure provide: thou shalt have my best gown to make thee a pair; and I'll bring thee to the court myself.

PERICLES. Then honour be but a goal to my will, This day I'll rise, or else add ill to ill.


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, etc.

[Enter Simonides, Lords and Attendants.]

SIMONIDES. Are the knights ready to begin the triumph?

FIRST LORD. They are, my liege; And stay your coming to present themselves.

SIMONIDES. Return them, we are ready; and our daughter, In honour of whose birth these triumphs are, Sits here, like beauty's child, whom nature gat For men to see, and seeing wonder at.

[Exit a Lord.]

THALIARD. It pleaseth you1 my royal father, to express My commendations great, whose merit's less.

SIMONIDES. It's 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 renowns if not respected. 'Tis now your honour, daughter, to explain The labour of each knight in his device.

THALIARD. Which, to preserve mine honour, I'll perform.

[Enter a Knight; he passes over, and his Squire presents his shield to the Princess.]

SIMONIDES. Who is the first that doth prefer himself?

THALIARD. A knight of Sparta, my renowned father; And the device he bears upon his shield Is a black Ethiope reaching at the sun: The word, 'Lux tua vita mihi.'

SIMONIDES. He loves you well that holds his life of you.

[The Second Knight passes over.]

Who is the second that presents himself?

THALIARD. 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 por dulzura que por fuerza.'

[The Third Knight passes over.]

SIMONIDES. And what's the third?

THALIARD. The third of Antioch; And his device, a wreath of chivalry; The word, 'Me pompae provexit apex.'

[The Fourth Knight passes over.]

SIMONIDES. What is the fourth?

THALIARD. A burning torch that's turned upside down; The word, 'Quod me alit, me extinguit.'

SIMONIDES. Which shows that beauty hath his power and will, Which can as well inflame as it can kill.

[The Fifth Knight passes over.]

THALIARD. The fifth, an hand environed with clouds, Holding out gold that's by the touchstone tried; The motto thus, 'Sic spectanda fides.'

[The Sixith Knight, Pericles, passes over.]

SIMONIDES. And what's The sixth and last, the which the knight himself With such a graceful courtesy deliver'd?

THALIARD. He seems to be a stranger; but his present is A wither'd branch, that's only green at top; The motto, 'In hac spe vivo.'

SIMONIDES. A pretty moral; From the dejected state wherein he is, He hopes by you his fortunes yet may flourish.

FIRST LORD. He had need mean better than his outward show Can any way speak in his just commend; For by his rusty outside he appears To have practised more the whipstock than the lance.

SECOND LORD. He well may be a stranger, for he comes To an honour'd triumph strangely furnished.

THIRD LORD. And on set purpose let his armour rust Until this day, to scour it in the dust.

SIMONIDES. Opinion's but a fool, that makes us scan The outward habit by the inward man. But stay, the knights are coming: we will withdraw Into the gallery.


[Great shouts within, and all cry 'The mean knight!']

SCENE III. The same. A hall of state: a banquet prepared.

[Enter Simonides, Thaisa, Lords, Attendants, and Knights, from tilting.]

SIMONIDES. Knights, To say you're welcome were superfluous. To place upon the volume of your deeds, As in a title-page, your worth in arms, Were more than you expect, or more than's fit, Since every worth in show commends itself. Prepare for mirth, for mirth becomes a feast: You are princes and my guests.

THAISA. But you, my knight and guest; To whom this wreath of victory I give, And crown you king of this day's happiness.

PERICLES. 'Tis more by fortune, lady, than by merit.

SIMONIDES. Call it by what you will, the day is yours; And here, I hope, is none that envies it. In framing an artist, art hath thus decreed, To make some good, but others to exceed; And you are her labour'd scholar. Come queen of the feast, — For, daughter, so you are, — here take your place: Marshal the rest, as they deserve their grace.

KNIGHTS. We are honour'd much by good Simonides.

SIMONIDES. Your presence glads our days; honour we love; For who hates honour hates the gods above.

MARSHALL. Sir, yonder is your place.

PERICLES. Some other is more fit.

FIRST KNIGHT. Contend not, sir; for we are gentlemen That neither in our hearts nor outward eyes Envy the great nor do the low despise.

PERICLES. You are right courteous knights.

SIMONIDES. Sit, sir, sit.

PERICLES. By Jove, I wonder, that is king of thoughts, These cates resist me, she but thought upon.

THAISA. By Juno, that is queen of marriage, All viands that I eat do seem unsavoury, Wishing him my meat. Sure, he's a gallant gentleman.

SIMONIDES. He's but a country gentleman; Has done no more than other knights have done; Has broken a staff or so; so let it pass.

THAISA. To me he seems like diamond to glass.

PERICLES. Yon king's to me like to my father's picture, Which tells me in that glory once he was; Had princes sit, like stars, about his throne, And he the sun, for them to reverence; None that beheld him, but, like lesser lights, Did vail their crowns to his supremacy: Where now his son's like a glow-worm in the night, The which hath fire in darkness, none in light: Whereby I see that Time's the king of men, He's both their parent, and he is their grave, And gives them what he will, not what they crave.

SIMONIDES. What, are you merry, knights?

KNIGHTS. Who can be other in this royal presence?

SIMONIDES. Here, with a cup that's stored unto the brim, — As you do love, fill to your mistress' lips, — We drink this health to you.

KNIGHTS. We thank your grace.

SIMONIDES. Yet pause awhile: Yon knight doth sit too melancholy, As if the entertainment in our court Had not a show might countervail his worth. Note it not you, Thaisa?

THAISA. What is it To me, my father?

SIMONIDES. O attend, my daughter: Princes in this should live like god's above, Who freely give to every one that comes To honour them: And princes not doing so are like to gnats, Which make a sound, but kill'd are wonder'd at. Therefore to make his entrance more sweet, Here, say we drink this standing-bowl of wine to him.

THAISA. Alas, my father, it befits not me Unto a stranger knight to be so bold: He may my proffer take for an offence, Since men take women's gifts for impudence.

SIMONIDES. How! Do as I bid you, or you'll move me else.

THAISA. [Aside] Now, by the gods, he could not please me better.

SIMONIDES. And furthermore tell him, we desire to know of him, Of whence he is, his name and parentage.

THAISA. The king my father, sir, has drunk to you.

PERICLES. I thank him.

THAISA. Wishing it so much blood unto your life.

PERICLES. I thank both him and you, and pledge him freely.

THAISA. And further he desires to know of you, Of whence you are, your name and parentage.

PERICLES. A gentleman of Tyre; my name, Pericles; My education been in arts and arms; Who, looking for adventures in the world, Was by the rough seas reft of ships and men, And after shipwreck driven upon this shore.

THAISA. He thanks your grace; names himself Pericles, A gentleman of Tyre, Who only by misfortune of the seas Bereft of ships and men, cast on this shore.

SIMONIDES. Now, by the gods, I pity his misfortune, And will awake him from his melancholy. Come, gentlemen, we sit too long on trifles, And waste the time, which looks for other revels. Even in your armours, as you are address'd, Will very well become a soldier's dance. I will not have excuse, with saying this, Loud music is too harsh for ladies' heads Since they love men in arms as well as beds.

[The Knights dance.]

So, this was well ask'd, 'twas so well perform'd. Come, sir; Here is a lady which wants breathing too: And I have heard you nights of Tyre Are excellent in making ladies trip; And that their measures are as exceltent.

PERICLES. In those that practise them they are, my lord.

SIMONIDES. O, that's as much as you would be denied Of your fair courtesy.

[The Knights and Ladies dance.]

Unclasp, unclasp: Thanks gentlemen, to all; all have done well.

[To Pericles.]

But you the you the best. Pages and lights to conduct These knights unto their several lodging.

[To Pericles.]

Yours, sir, We have given order to be next our own.

PERICLES. I am at your grace's pleasure.

SIMONIDES. Princes, it is too late to talk of love; And that's the mark I know you level at: Therefore each one betake him to his rest; To-morrow all for speeding do their best.


SCENE IV. Tyre. A room in the Govenor's house.

[Enter Helicanus and Escanes.]

HELICANUS. No, Escanes, know this of me, Antiochus from incest lived not free: For which, the most high gods not minding longer To withhold the vengeance that they had in store Due to this heinous capital offence, Even in the height and pride of all his glory, When he was seated in a chariot Of an inestimable value, and his daughter with him, A fire from heavn came and shrivell'd up Their bodies, even to loathing; for they so stunk, That all those eyes adored them ere their fall Scorn now their hand should give them burial.

ESCANES. 'Twas very strange

HELICANUS. And yet but justice; for though This king were great; his greatness was no guard. To bar heaven's shaft, but sin had his reward.

ESCANES. 'Tis very true.

[Enter two or three Lords.]

FIRST LORD. See, not a man in private conference Or council has respect with him but he.

SECOND LORD. It shall no longer grieve with out reproof.

THIRD LORD. And cursed be he that will not second it.

FIRST LORD. Follow me, then. Lord Helicane, a word.

HELICANE. With me? and welcome: happy day, my lords.

FIRST LORD. Know that our griefs are risen to the top, And now at length they overflow their banks.

HELICANE. Your griefs! for what? wrong not your prince your love.

FIRST LORD. Wrong not yourself, then, noble Helicane; But 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 there; And be resolved he lives to govern us, Or dead, give's cause to mourn his funeral, And leave us to our free election.

SECOND LORD. Whose death indeed 's the strongest in our censure: And knowing this kingdom is without a head, — Like goodly buildings left without a roof Soon fall to ruin, — your noble self, That best know how to rulle and how to reign, We thus submit unto, — our sovereign.

ALL. Live, noble Helicane!

HELICANUS. For honour's cause, forbear your suffrages: If that you love Prince Pericles, forbear. Take I your wish, I leap into the seas, Where's hourly trouble for a minute's ease. A twelve month longer, let me entreat you to Forbear the absence of your king; If in which time expired, he not return, I shall with aged patience bear your yoke. But if I cannot win you to this love, Go search like nobles, like noble subjects, And in your search spend your adventurous worth; Whom if you find, and win unto return, You shall like diamonds sit about his crown.

FIRST LORD. To wisdom he's a fool that will not yield; And since Lord Helicane enjoineth us, We with our travels will endeavour us.

HELICANUS. Then you love us, we you, and we'll clasp hands: When peers thus knit, a kingdom ever stands.


SCENE V. Pentapolis. A room in the palace.

Enter Simonides, reading a letter at one door: the Knights meet him.]

FIRST KNIGHT.] Good morrow to the good Simonides.

SIMONIDES. Knights, from my daughter this I let you know, That for this twelvemonth she'll not undertake A married life. Her reason to herself is only known, Which yet from her by no means can I get.

SECOND KNIGHT. May we not get access to her, my lord?

SIMONIDES. 'Faith, by no means; she hath so strictly tied Her to her chamber, that 'tis impossible. One twelve moons more she'll wear Diana's livery; This by the eye of Cynthia hath she vow'd, And on her virgin honour will not break it.

THIRD KNIGHT. Loath to bid farewell, we take our leaves.

[Exeunt Knights.]

SIMONIDES. So, They are well dispatch'd; now to my daughter's letter: She tells me here, she'll wed the stranger knight. Or never more to view nor day nor light. 'Tis well, mistress; your choice agrees with mine; I like that well: nay, how absolute she's in it, Not minding whether I dislike or no! Well, I do commend her choice; And will no longer have it delay'd. Soft! here he comes: I must dissemble it.

[Enter Pericles.]

PERICLES. All fortune to the good Simonides!

SIMONIDES. To you as much, sir! I am beholding to you For your sweet music this last night: I do Protest my ears were never better fed With such delightful pleasing harmony.

PERICLES. It is your grace's pleasure to commend; Not my desert.

SIMONIDES. Sir, you are music's master.

PERICLES. The worst of all her scholars, my good lord.

SIMONIDES. Let me ask you one thing: What do you think of my daughter, sir?

PERICLES. A most virtuous princess.

SIMONIDES. And she is fair too, is she not?

PERICLES. As a fair day in summer, wondrous fair.

SIMONIDES. Sir, my daughter thinks very well of you; Ay, so well, that you must be her master, And she will be your scholar: therefore look to it.

PERICLES. I am unworthy for her schoolmaster.

SIMONIDES. She thinks not so; peruse this writing else.

PERICLES. [Aside.] A letter, that she loves the knight of Tyre! 'Tis the king's subtilty to have my life. O, seek not to entrap me, gracious lord, A stranger and distressed gentleman, That never aim'd so high to love your daughter, But bent all offices to honour her.

SIMONIDES. Thou hast bewitch'd my daughter, and thou art A villain.

PERICLES. By the gods, I have not: Never did thought of mine levy offence; Nor never did my actions yet commence A deed might gain her love or your displeasure.

SIMONIDES. Traitor, thou liest.

PERICLES. Traitor!

SIMONIDES. Ay, traitor;

PERICLES. Even in his throat — unless it be the king — That calls me traitor, I return the lie.

SIMONIDES. [Aside.] Now, by the gods, I do applaud his courage.

PERICLES. 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 not to be a rebel to her state; And he that otherwise accounts of me, This sword shall prove he's honour's enemy.

SIMONIDES. No? Here comes my daughter, she can witness it.

[Enter Thaisa.]

PERICLES. 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.

THAISA. Why, sir, say if you had, Who takes offence at that would make me glad?

SIMONIDES. Yea, mistress, are you so peremptory? [Aside.] I am glad on't with all my heart. — I'll tame you; I'll bring you in subjection. Will you, not having my consent, Bestow your love and your affections Upon a stranger? [Aside.] who, for aught I know, May be, nor can I think the contrary, As great in blood as I myself. — Therefore hear you, mistress; either frame Your will to mine, — and you, sir, hear you, Either be ruled 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 pleased?

THAISA. Yes, if you love me, sir.

PERICLES. Even as my life my blood that fosters it.

SIMONIDES. What, are you both agreed?

BOTH. Yes, if it please your majesty.

SIMONIDES. It pleaseth me so well, that I will see you wed; And then with what haste you can get you to bed.



[Enter Gower.]

GOWER. 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 the oven's mouth, E'er 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 show I'll plain with speech.

[Dumb Show.]

[Enter, Pericles and Simonides, at one door, with Attendants; a Messenger meets them, kneels, and gives Pericles a letter: Pericles shows it Simonides; the Lords kneel to him. Then enter Thaisa with child, with Lychorida a nurse. The King shows her the letter; she rejoices: she and Pericles take leave of her father, and depart, with Lychorida and their Attendants. Then exeunt Simonides and the rest.]

By many a dern and painful perch Of Pericles the careful search, By the four opposing coigns Which the world together joins, Is made with all due diligence That horse and sail and high expense Can stead the quest. At last from Tyre, Fame answering the most strange inquire, To the court of King Simonides Are letters brought, the tenour these: Antiochus and his daughter dead; The men of Tyrus on the head Of Helicanus would set on The crown of Tyre, but he will none: The mutiny he there hastes t' oppress; Says to 'em, if King Pericles Come not home in twice six moons, He, obedient to their dooms, Will take the crown. The sum of this, Brought hither to Pentapolis Y-ravished the regions round, And every one with claps can sound, 'Our heir-apparent is a king! Who dream'd, who thought of such a thing?' Brief, he must hence depart to Tyre: His queen with child makes her desire — Which who shall cross? — along to go: Omit we all their dole and woe: Lychorida, her nurse, she takes, And so to sea. Their vessel shakes On Neptune's billow; half the flood Hath their keel cut: but fortune's mood Varies again; the grisled north Disgorges such a tempest forth, That, as a duck for life that dives, So up and down the poor ship drives: The lady shrieks, and well-a-near Does fall in travail with her fear: And what ensues in this fell storm Shall for itself itself perform. I nill relate, action may Conveniently the rest convey; Which might not what by me is told. In your imagination hold This stage the ship, upon whose deck The sea-tost Pericles appears to speak.



[Enter Pericles, on shipboard.]

PERICLES. Thou god of this great vast, rebuke these surges, Which wash forth both heaven and hell; and thou that hast Upon the winds command, bind them in brass, Having call'd them from the deep! O, still Thy deafening, dreadful thunders; gently quench Thy nimble, sulphurous flashes! O, how, Lychorida, How does my queen? Thou stormest venomously; Wilt thou spit all thyself? The seaman's whistle Is as a whisper in the ears of death, Unheard. Lychorida! - Lucina, O Divinest patroness, and midwife gentle To those that cry by night, convey thy deity Aboard our dancing boat; make swift the pangs Of my queen's travails!

[Enter Lychorida, with an Infant.]

Now, Lychorida!

LYCHORIDA. Here is a thing too young for such a place, Who, if it had conceit, would die, as I Am like to do: take in your aims this piece Of your dead queen.

PERICLES. How, how, Lychorida!

LYCHORIDA. Patience, good sir; do not assist the storm. Here's all that is left living of your queen, A little daughter: for the sake of it, Be manly, and take comfort.

PERICLES. O you gods! Why do you make us love your goodly gifts, And snatch them straight away? We here below Recall not what we give, and therein may Use honour with you.

LYCHORIDA. Patience, good sir. Even for this charge.

PERICLES. Now, mild may be thy life! For a more blustrous birth had never babe: Quiet and gentle thy conditions! for Thou art the rudliest welcome to this world That ever was prince's child. Happy what follows! Thiou hast as chiding a nativity As fire, air, water, earth, and heaven can make, To herald thee from the womb: even at the first Thy loss is more than can thy portage quit, With all thou canst find here, Now, the good gods Throw their best eyes upon't!

{Enter two Sailors.]

FIRST SAILOR. What courage, sir? God save you!

PERICLES. Courage enough: I do not fear the flaw; It hath done to me the worst. Yet, for the love Of ths poor infant, this fresh-new sea-farer, I would it would be quiet.

FIRST SAILOR. Slack the bolins there! Thou wilt not, wilt thou? Blow, and split thyself.

SECOND SAILOR. But sea-room, an the brine and cloudy billow kiss the moon, I care not.

FIRST SAILOR. Sir, your queen must overboard: the sea works high, the wind is loud and will not lie till the ship be cleared of the dead.

PERICLES. That's your superstition.

FIRST SAILOR. Pardon us, sir; with us at sea it has been still observed; and we are strong in custom. Therefore briefly yield her; for she must overboard straight.

PERICLES. As you think meet. Most wretched queen!

LYCHORIDA. Here she lies, sir.

PERICLES. A terrible childben hast thou had, my dear; No light, no fire: the unfriendly elements Forgot thee utterly; nor have I time To give thee hallow'd to thy grave, but straight Must cast thee, scarcely coffin'd, in the ooze; Where, for a monument upon thy bones, And e'er-remaining lamps, the belching whale And humming water must o'erwhelm thy corpse, Lying with simple shells. O Lychorida. Bid Nestor bring me spices, ink and paper, My casket and my jewels; and bid Nicander Bring me the satin coffer: lay the babe Upon the pillow: hie thee, whiles I say A priestly farewell to her: suddenly, woman.

[Exit Lychorida.]

SECOND SAILOR. Sir, we have a chest beneath the hatches, caulked and bitumed ready.

PERICLES. I thank thee. Mariner, say what coast is this?

SECOND SAILOR. We are near Tarsus.

PERICLES. Thither, gentle mariner, Alter thy course for Tyre. When, canst thou reach it?

SECOND SAILOR. By break of day, if the wind cease.

PERICLES. O, make for Tarsus! There will I visit Cleon, for the babe Cannot hold out to Tyrus there I'll leave it At careful nursing. Go thy ways, good mariner: I'll bring the body presently.


SCENE II. Ephesus. A room in Cerimon's house.

[Enter Cerimon, with a Servant, and some Persons who have been shipwrecked.]

CERIMON. Philemon, ho!

[Enter Philemon.]

PHILEMON. Doth my lord call?

CERIMON. Get fire and meat for these poor men: 'T has been a turbulent and stormy night.

SERVANT. I have been in many; but such a night as this, Till now, I ne'er endured.

CERIMON. Your master will be dead ere you return; There's nothing can be minister'd to nature That can recover him.

[To Philemon.] Give this to the 'pothecary, And tell me how it works.

[Exeunt all but Cerimon.]

[Enter two Gentlemen.]


SECOND GENTLEMAN. Good morrow to your lordship.

CERIMON. Gentlemen, Why do you stir so early?

FIRST GENTLEMAN. Sir, Our lodgings, standing bleak upon the sea, Shook as the earth did quake; The very principals did seem to rend, And all-to topple: pure surprise and fear Made me to quit the house.

SECOND GENTLEMAN. That is the cause we trouble you so early; 'Tis not our husbandry.

CERIMON. O, you say well.

FIRST GENTLEMAN. But I much marvel that your lordship, having Rich tire about you, should at these early hours Shake off the golden slumber of repose. 'Tis most strange, Nature should be so conversant with pain. Being thereto not compell'd.

CERIMON. I hold it ever, Virtue and cunning were endowments greater Than nobleness and riches: careless heirs May the two latter darken and expend; But immortality attends the former, Making a man a god. 'Tis known, I ever Have studied physic, through which secret art, By turning o'er authorities, I have, Together with my practice, made familiar To me and to my aid the blest infusions That dwell in vegetives, in metals, stones; And I can speak of the disturbances That nature works, and of her cures; which doth give me A more content in course of true delight Than to be thirsty after tottering honour, Or tie my treasure up in silken bags, To please the fool and death.

SECOND GENTLEMAN. Your honour has through Ephesus pour'd forth Your charity, and hundreds call themselves Your creatures, who by you have been restored: And not your knowledge, your personal pain, but even Your purse, still open, hath built Lord Cerimon Such strong renown as time shall ne'er decay.

[Enter two or three Servants with a chest.]

FIRST SERVANT. So; lift there.

CERIMON. What is that?

FIRST SERVANT. Sir, even now Did the sea toss upon our shore this chest: 'Tis of some wreck.

CERIMON. Set 't down, let's look upon 't.

SECOND GENTLEMAN. 'Tis like a coffin, sir.

CERIMON. Whate'er it be, 'Tis wondrous heavy. Wrench it open straight: If the sea's stomach be o'ercharged with gold, 'Tis a good constraint of fortune it belches upon us.

SECOND GENTLEMAN. 'Tis so, my lord.

CERIMON. How close 'tis caulk'd and bitumed! Did the sea cast it up?

FIRST SERVANT. I never saw so huge a billow, sir, As toss'd it upon shore.

CERIMON. Wrench it open; Soft! it smells most sweetly in my sense.

SECOND GENTLEMAN. A delicate odour.

CERIMON. As ever hit my nostril. So up with it. O you most potent gods! what's here? a corse!

FIRST GENTLEMAN. Most strange!

CERIMON. Shrouded in cloth of state; balm'd and entreasured With full bags of spices! A passport too! Apollo, perfect me in the characters!

[Reads from a scroll.]

'Here I give to understand, If e'er this coffin drive a-land, I, King Pericles, have lost This queen, worth all our mundane cost. Who her, give her burying; She was the daughter of a king: Besides this treasure for a fee, The gods requite his charity!' If thou livest, Pericles, thou hast a heart That even cracks for woe! This chanced tonight.

SECOND GENTLEMAN. Most likely, sir.

CERIMON. Nay, certainly to-night; For look how fresh she looks! They were too rough That threw her in the sea. Make a fire within Fetch hither all my boxes in my closet.

[Exit a Servant.]

Death may usurp on nature many hours, And yet the fire of life kindle again The o'erpress'd spirits. I heard of an Egyptian That had nine hours lien dead, Who was by good appliance recovered.

[Re-enter a Servant, with boxes, napkins, and fire.

Well said, well said; the fire and cloths. The rough and woeful music that we have, Cause it to sound, beseech you The viol once more: how thou stirr'st, thou block! The music there! — I pray you, give her air. Gentlemen, This queen will live: nature awakes; a warmth Breathes out of her: she hath not been entranced Above five hours: see how she gins to blow Into life's flower again!

FIRST GENTLEMAN. The heavens, Through you, increase our wonder and set up Your fame for ever.

CERIMON. She is alive; behold, Her eyelids, cases to those heavenly jewels Which Pericles hath lost, Begin to part their fringes of bright gold; The diamonds of a most praised water Do appear, to make the world twice rich. Live, And make us weep to hear your fate, fair creature, Rare as you seem to be.

[She moves.]

THAISA. O dear Diana, Where am I? Where's my lord? What world is this?

SECOND GENTLEMAN. Is not this strange?


CERIMON. Hush, my gentle neighbours! Lend me your hands; to the next chamber bear her. Get linen: now this matter must be look'd to, For her, relapse is mortal. Come, come; And AEsculapius guide us!

[Exeunt, carrying her away.]

SCENE III. Tarsus. A room in Cleon's house.

[Enter Pericles, Cleon, Dionyza, and Lychorida with Marina in her arms.]

PERICLES. Most honour'd Cleon, I must needs be gone; My twelve months are expired, and Tyrus stands In a litigious peace. You, and your lady, Take from my heart all thankfulness! The gods Make up the rest upon you!

CLEON. Your shafts of fortune, though they hurt you mortally, Yet glance full wanderingly on us.

DIONYZA. O, your sweet queen! That the strict fates had pleased you had brought her hither, To have bless'd mine eyes with her!

PERICLES. We cannot but obey The powers above us. Could I rage and roar As doth the sea she lies in, yet the end Must be as 'tis. My gentle babe Marina, whom, For she was born at sea, I have named so, here I charge your charity withal, leaving her The infant of your care; beseeching you To give her princely training, that she may be Manner'd as she is born.

CLEON. Fear not, my lord, but think Your grace, that fed my country with your corn, For which the people's prayers still fall upon you, Must in your child be thought on. If neglection Should therein make me vile, the common body, By you relieved, would force me to my duty: But if to that my nature need a spur, The gods revenge it upon me and mine, To the end of generation!

PERICLES. I believe you; Your honour and your goodness teach me to 't, Without your vows. Till she be married, madam, By bright Diana, whom we honour, all Unscissar'd shall this hair of mine remain, Though I show ill in 't. So I take my leave Good madam, make me blessed in your care In bringing up my child.

DIONYZA. I have one myself, Who shall not be mere dear to my respect Than yours, my lord.

PERICLES. Madam, my thanks and prayers.

CLEON. We'll bring your grace e'en to the edge o' the shore, Then give you up to the mask'd Neptune and The gentlest winds of heaven.

PERICLES. I will embrace Your offer. Come, dearest madam. O, no tears, Lychorida, no tears: Look to your little mistress, on whose grace You may depend hereafter. Come, my lord.


SCENE IV. Ephesus. A room in Cerimon's house.

[Enter Cerimon and Thaisa.]

CERIMON. Madam, this letter, and some certain jewels, Lay with you in your coffer: which are now At your command. Know you the character?

THAISA. It is my lord's. That I was shipp'd at sea, I well remember, Even on my eaning time; but whether there Deliver'd, by the holy gods, I cannot rightly say. But since King Pericles, My wedded lord, I ne'er shall see again, A vestal livery will I take me to, And never more have joy.

CERIMON. Madam, if this you purpose as ye speak, Diana's temple is not distant far, Where you may abide till your date expire. Moreover, if you please, a niece of mine Shall there attend you.

THAISA. My recompense is thanks, that's all; Yet my good will is great, though the gift small.



[Enter Gower.]

GOWER. Imagine Pericles arrived at Tyre, Welcomed and settled to his own desire. His woeful queen we leave at Ephesus, Unto Diana there a votaress. Now to Marina bend your mind, Whom our fast-growing scene must find At Tarsus, and by Cleon train'd In music, letters; who hath gain'd Of education all the grace, Which makes her both the heart and place Of general wonder. But, alack, That monster envy, oft the wrack Of earned praise, Marina's life Seeks to take off by treason's knife. And in this kind hath our Cleon One daughter, and a wench full grown, Even ripe for marriage-rite; this maid Hight Philoten: and it is said For certain in our story, she Would ever with Marina be: Be't when she weaved the sleided silk With fingers long, small, white as milk; Or when she would with sharp needle wound, The cambric, which she made more sound By hurting it; or when to the lute She sung, and made the night-bird mute That still records with moan; or when She would with rich and constant pen Vail to her mistress Dian; still This Philoten contends in skill With absolute Marina: so With the dove of Paphos might the crow Vie feathers white. Marina gets All praises, which are paid as debts, And not as given. This so darks In Philoten all graceful marks, That Cleon's wife, with envy rare, A present murderer does prepare For good Marina, that her daughter Might stand peerless by this slaughter. The sooner her vile thoughts to stead, Lychorida, our nurse, is dead: And cursed Dionyza hath The pregnant instrument of wrath Prest for this blow. The unborn event I do commend to your content: Only I carry winged time Post on the lame feet of my rhyme; Which never could I so convey, Unless your thoughts went on my way. Dionyza does appear, With Leonine, a murderer.


Scene I. Tarsus. An open place near the sea-shore.

[Enter Dionyza and Leonine.]

DIONYZA. Thy oath remember; thou hast sworn to do 't: 'Tis but a blow, which never shall be known. Thou canst not do a thing in the world so soon, To yield thee so much profit. Let not conscience, Which is but cold, inflaming love i' thy bosom, Inflame too nicely; nor let pity, which Even women have cast off, melt thee, but be A soldier to thy purpose.

LEONINE. I will do't; but yet she is a goodly creature.

DIONYZA. The fitter, then, the gods should have her. Here she comes weeping for her only mistress' death. Thou art resolved?

LEONINE. I am resolved.

[Enter Marina, with a basket of flowers.]

MARINA. No, I will rob Tellus of her weed To strew thy green with flowers: the yellows, blues, The purple violets, and marigolds, Shall as a carpet hang upon thy grave, While summer-days do last. Ay me! poor maid, Born in a tempest, when my mother died, This world to me is like a lasting storm, Whirring me from my friends.

DIONYZA. How now, Marina! why do you keep alone? How chance my daughter is not with you? Do not Consume your blood with sorrowing: you have A nurse of me. Lord, how your favour's changed With this unprofitable woe! Come, give me your flowers, ere the sea mar it. Walk with Leonine; the air is quick there, And it pierces and sharpens the stomach. Come, Leonine, take her by the arm, walk with her.

MARINA. No, I pray you; I'll not bereave you of your servant.

DIONYZA. Come, come; I love the king your father, and yourself, With more than foreign heart. We every day Expect him here: when he shall come and find Our paragon to all reports thus blasted, He will repent the breadth of his great voyage; Blame both my lord and me, that we have taken No care to your best courses. Go, I pray you, Walk, and be cheerful once again; reserve That excellent complexion, which did steal The eyes of young and old. Care not for me; I can go home alone.

MARINA. Well, I will go; But yet I have no desire to it.

DIONYZA. Come, come, I know 'tis good for you. Walk half an hour, Leonine, at the least: Remember what I have said.

LEONINE. I warrant you, madam.

DIONYZA. I'll leave you, my sweet lady, for a while: Pray, walk softly, do not heat your blood: What! I must have a care of you.

MARINA. My thanks, sweet madam.

[Exit Dionyza.]

Is this wind westerly that blows?

LEONINE. South-west.

MARINA. When I was born, the wind was north.

LEONINE. Was 't so?

MARINA. My father, as nurse said, did never fear, But cried 'Good seamen!' to the sailors, galling His kingly hands, haling ropes; And, clasping to the mast, endured a sea That almost burst the deck.

LEONINE. When was this?

MARINA. When I was born: Never was waves nor wind more violent; And from the ladder-tackle washes off A canvas-climber. 'Ha!' says one, wilt out?' And with a dropping industry they skip From stem to stern: the boatswain whistles, and The master calls, and trebles their confusion.

LEONINE. Come, say your prayers.

MARINA. What mean you?

LEONINE. If you require a little space for prayer, I grant it: pray; but be not tedious, For the gods are quick of ear, and I am sworn To do my work with haste.

MARINA. Why will you kill rne?

LEONINE. To satisfy my lady.

MARINA. Why would she have me kill'd? Now, as I can remember, by my troth, I never did her hurt in all my life: I never spoke bad word, nor did ill turn To any living creature: believe me, la, I never kill'd a mouse, nor hurt a fly: I trod upon a worm against my will, But I wept for it. How have I offended, Wherein my death might yield her any profit, Or my life imply her any danger?

LEONINE. My commission Is not to reason of the deed, but do it.

MARINA. You will not do 't for all the world, I hope. You are well favour'd, and your looks foreshow You have a gentle heart. I saw you lately, When you caught hurt in parting two that fought: Good sooth, it show'd well in you: do so now: Your lady seeks my life; come you between, And save poor me, the weaker.

LEONINE. I am sworn, And will dispatch.

[He seizes her.]

[Enter Pirates.]

FIRST PIRATE. Hold, villain!

[Leonine runs away.]

SECOND PIRATE. A prize! a prize!

THIRD PIRATE. Half-part, mates, half-part, Comes, let's have her aboard suddenly.

[Exeunt Pirates with Marina.]

[Re-enter Leonine.]

LEONINE. These roguing thieves serve the great pirate Valdes; And they hav seized Marina. Let her go: Thre's no hope she will return. I'll swear she's dead And thrown into the sea. But I'll see further: Perhaps they will but please themselves upon her, Not carry her aboard. If she remain, Whom they have ravish'd must by me be slain.


Scene II. Mytilene. A room in a brothel.

[Enter Pandar, Bawd, and Boult.]

PANDAR. Boult!


PANDAR. Search the market narrowly; Mytilene is full of gallants. We lost too much money this mart by being too wenchless.

BAWD. We were never so much out of creatures. We have but poor three, and they can do no more than they can do; and they with continual action are even as good as rotten.

PANDAR. Therefore let's have fresh ones, whate'r we pay for them. If there be not a conscience to be used in every trade, we shall never prosper.

BAWD. Thou sayest true: 'tis not our bringing up of poor bastards, — as, I think, I have bought up some eleven —

BOULT. Ay, to eleven; and brought them down again. But shall I search the market?

BAWD. What else, man? The stuff we have, a strong wind will blo it to pieces, they are so pitifully sodden.

PANDAR. Thou sayest true; they're too unwholesome, o' conscience. The poor Transylvanian is dead, that lay with the little baggage.

BOULT. Ay, she quickly pooped him; she made him roast-meat for worms. But I'll go search the market.


PANDAR. Three or four thousand chequins were as pretty a proportion to live quietly, and so give over.

BAWD. Wgy to give over, I pray you? is it a shame to get when we are old?

PANDAR. O, our credit comes not in like the commodity , nor the commodity wages not with the danger: therfore, if in our youths we could pick up some pretty estate, 'twere not amiss to keep our door hatched. Besides, the sore terms we stand upon with the gods will be strong with us for giving over.

BAWD. Come, others sorts offend as well as we.

PANDAR. As well as we! ay, and better too; we offend worse. Neither is our profession any trade; it's no calling. But here comes Boult.

[Re-enter Boult, with the Pirates and Marina.]

BOULT [To Marina.] Come your ways. My masters, you say she's a virgin?

FIRST PIRATE. O, sir, we doubt it not.

BOULT. Master, I have gone through for this piece, you see: if you like her, so; if not, I have lost my earnest.

BAWD. Boult, has she any qualities?

BOULT. She has a good face, speaks well, and has excellent clothes: ther's no further necessity of qualities can make her be refused.

BAWD. What is her price, Boult?

BOULT. I cannot be baited one doit of a thousand pieces.

PANDAR. Well, follow me, my masters, you shall have your money presently. Wife, take her in; instruct her what she has to do, that she may not be raw in her entertainment.

[Exeunt Pandar and Pirates.]

BAWD. Boult, take you the marks of her, the colour of her hair, complexion, height, age, with warrant of her virginity; and cry 'He that will give most shall have her first.' Such a maidenhead were no cheap thing, if men were as they have been. Get this done as I command you.

BOULT. Performance shall follow.


MARINA. Alack that Leonine was so slack, so slow! He should have struck, not spoke; or that these pirates, Not enough barbarous, had not o'erboard thrown me For to seek my mother!

BARD. Why lament you, pretty one?

MARINA. That I am pretty.

BAWD. Come, the gods have done their part in you.

MARINA. I accuse them not.

BAWD. You are light into my hands, where you are like to live.

MARINA. The more my fault To scape his hands where I was like to die.

BAWD. Ay, and you shall live in pleasure.


BAWD. Yes, indeed shall you, and taste gentlemen of all fashions: you shall fare well; you shall have the difference of all complexions. What! do you stop your ears?

MARINA. Are you a woman?

BAWD. What would you have me be, an I be not a woman?

MARINA. An honest woman, or not a woman.

BAWD. Marry, whip the, gosling: I think I shall have something to do with you. Come, you're a young foolish sapling, and must be bowed as I would have you.

MARINA. The gods defend me!

BAWD. If it please the gods to defend you by men, then men must comfort you, men must feed you, men must stir you up. Boult's returned.

[Re-enter Boult.]

Now, sir, hast thou cried her through the market?

BOULT. I have cried her almost to the number of her hairs; I have drawn her picture with my voice.

BAWD. And I prithee tell me, how dost thou find the inclination of the people, especially of the younger sort?

BOULT. 'Faith, they listened to me as they would have hearkened to their father's testament. There was a Spaniard's mouth so watered, that he went to bed to her very description.

BAWD. We shall have him here to-morrow: with his best ruff on.

BOULT. To-night, to-night. But, mistress, do you know the French knight that cowers i' the hams?

BAWD. Who, Monsieur Veroles?

BOULT. Ay, he: he offered to cut a caper at the proclamation; but he made a groan at it, and swore he would see her to-morrow.

BAWD. Well. well; as for him, he brought his disease hither: here he does but repair it. I know he will come in our shadow, to scatter his crowns in the sun.

BOULT. Well, if we had of every nation a traveller, we should lodge them with this sign.

[To Marina.] Pray you, come hither awhile. You have fortunes coming upon you. Mark me: you must seem to do that fearfully which you commit willingly, despise profit where you have most gain. To weep that you live as ye do makes pity in your lovers: seldom but that pity begets you a good opinion, and that opinion a mere profit.

MARINA. I understand you not.

BOULT. O, take her home, mistress, take her home: these blushes of hers must be quenched with some present practice.

BAWD. Thou sayest true, i' faith so they must; for your bride goes to that with shame which is her way to go with warrant.

BOULT. 'Faith, some do and some do not. But, mistress, if I have bargained for the joint, —

BAWD. Thou mayst cut a morsel off the spit.

BOULT. I may so.

BAWD. Who should deny it? Come young one, I like the manner of your garments well.

BOULT. Ay, by my faith, they shall not be changed yet.

BAWD. Boult, spend thou that in the town: report what a sojourner we have; you'll lose nothing by custom. When nature framed this piece, she meant thee a good turn; therefore say what a paragon she is, and thou hast the harvest out of thine own report.

BOULT. I warrant you, mistress, thunder shall not so awake the beds of eels as my giving out her Beauty stir up the lewdly-inclined. I'll bring home some to-night.

BAWD. Come your ways; follow me.

MARINA. If fires be hot, knives sharp, or waters deep, Untied I still my virgin knot will keep. Diana, aid my purpose!

BAWD. What have we to do with Diana? Pray you, will you go with us?


SCENE III. Tarsus. A room in Cleon's house.

[Enter Cleon and Dionyza.]

DIONYZA. Why, are you foolish? Can it be undone?

CLEON. O, Dionyza, such a piece of slaughter The sun and moon ne'er look'd upon!

DIONYZA. I think You'll turn a child agan.

CLEON. Were I chief lord of all this spacious world, I'ld give it to undo the deed. 0 lady, Much less in blood than virtue, yet a princess To equal any single crown o' the earth I' the justice of compare! O villain Leonine! Whom thou hast poison'd too: If thou hadst drunk to him, 't had been a kindness Becoming well thy fact: what canst thou say When noble Pericles shall demand his child?

DIONYZA. That she is dead. Nurses are not the fates, To foster it, nor ever to preserve. She died at night; I'11 say so. Who can cross it? Unless you play the pious innocent, And for an honest attribute cry out 'She died by foul play.'

CLEON. O, go to. Well, well, Of all the faults beneath the heavens, the gods Do like this worst.

DIONYZA. Be one of those that think. The petty wrens of Tarsus will fly hence, And open this to Pericles. I do shame To think of what a noble strain you are, And of how coward a spirit.

CLEON. To such proceeding Whoever but his approbation added, Though not his prime consent, he did not flow From honourable sources,

DIONYZA. Be it so, then: Yet none does know, but you, how she came dead, Nor none can know, Leonine being gone. She did distain my child, and stood between Her and her fortunes: none would look on her, But cast their gazes on Marina's face; Whilst ours was blurted at and held a malkin Not worth the time of day. It pierced me through; And though you call my course unnatural, You not your child well loving, yet I find It greets me as an enterprise of kindness Perform'd to your sole daughter.

CLEON. Heavens forgive it!

DIONYZA. And as for Pericles, What should he say? We wept after her hearse, And yet we mourn: her monument Is almost finish'd, and her epitaphs In glittering golden characters express A general praise to her, and care in us At whose expense 'tis done.

CLEON. Thou art like the harpy, Which, to betray, dost, with thine angel's face, Seize with thine eagle's talons.

DIONYZA. You are like one that superstitiously Doth swear to the gods that winter kills the flies: But yet I know you'll do as I advise.



[Enter Gower, before the monument of Marina at Tarsus.]

GOWER. Thus time we waste, and longest leagues make short; Sail seas in cockles, have an wish but for 't; Making, to take your imagination, From bourn to bourn, region to region. By you being pardon'd, we commit no crime To use one language in each several clime Where our scenes seem to live. I do beseech you To learn of me, who stand i' the gaps to teach you, The stages of our story. Pericles Is now again thwarting the wayward seas Attended on by many a lord and knight, To see his daughter, all his life's deight. Old Escanes, whom Helicanus late Advanced in time to great and high estate. Is left to govern. Bear you it in mind, Old Helicanus goes along behind Well-sailing ships and bounteous winds have brought This king to Tarsus, — think his pilot thought; So with his steerage shall your thoughts grow on, — To fetch his daughter home, who first is gone. Like motes and shadows see them move awhile; Your ears unto your eyes I'll reconcile.

[Dumb Show.]

[Enter Pericles, at one door, with all his train; Cleon and Dionyza, at the other. Cleon shows Pericles the tomb; whereat Pericles makes lamentation, puts on sackcloth, and in a mighty passion departs. Then exeunt Cleon and Dionyza.]

See how belief may suffer by foul show; This borrow'd passion stands for true old woe; And Pericles, in sorrow all devour'd, With sighs shot through; and biggest tears o'ershower'd, Leaves Tarsus and again embarks. He swears Never to wash his face, nor cut his hairs: He puts on sackcloth, and to sea. He bears A tempest, which his mortal vessel tears, And yet he rides it out. Now please you wit The epitaph is for Marina writ By wicked Dionyza.

[Reads the inscription on Marina's monument.] 'The fairest, sweet'st, and best lies here, Who wither'd in her spring of year. She was of Tyrus the king's daughter, On whom foul death hath made this slaughter; Marina was she call'd; and at her birth, Thetis, being proud, swallow'd some part o' the earth: Therefore the earth, fearing to be o'erflow'd, Hath Thetis' birth-child on the heavens bestow'd: Wherefore she does, and swears she'll never stint, Make raging battery upon shores of flint.'

No visor does become black villany So well as soft and tender flattery. Let Pericles believe his daughter's dead, And bear his courses to be ordered By Lady Fortune; while our scene must play His daughter's woe and heavy well-a-day In her unholy service. Patience, then, And think you now are all in Mytilene.


SCENE V. Mytilene. A street before the brothel.

[Enter, from the brothel, two Gentlemen.]

FIRST GENTLEMAN. Did you ever hear the like?

SECOND GENTLEMAN. No, nor never shall do in such a place as this, she being once gone.

FIRST GENTLEMAN. But to have divinity preached there! did you ever dream of such a thing?

SECOND GENTLEMAN. No, no. Come, I am for no more bawdy-houses: shall's go hear the vestals sing?

FIRST GENTLEMAN. I'll do any thing now that is virtuous; but I am out of the road of rutting for ever.


SCENE VI. The same. A room in the brothel.

[Enter Pandar, Bawd, and Boult.]

PANDAR. Well, I had rather than twice the worth of her she had ne'er come here.

BAWD. Fie, fie upon her! she's able to freeze the god Priapus, and undo a whole generation. We must either get her ravished, or be rid of her. When she should do for clients her fitment, and do me the kindness of our profession, she has me her quirks, her reasons, her master reasons, her prayers, her knees; that she would make a puritan of the devil, if he should cheapen a kiss of her.

BOULT. 'Faith, I must ravish her, or she'll disfurnish us of all our cavaliers, and make our swearers priests.

PANDAR. Now, the pox upon her green-sickness for me!

BAWD. 'Faith, there's no way to be rid on't but by the way to the pox. Here comes the Lord Lysimachus disguised.

BOULT. We should have both lord and lown, if the peevish baggage would but give way to customers.

[Enter Lysimachus.]

LYSIMACHUS. How now! How a dozen of virginities?

BAWD. Now, the gods to bless your honour!

BOULT. I am glad to see your honour in good health.

LYSIMACHUS. You may so; 'tis the better for you that your resorters stand upon sound legs. How now! wholesome iniquity have you that a man may deal withal, and defy the surgeon?

BAWD. We have here one, sir, if she would — but there never came her like in Mytilene.

LYSIMACHUS. If she'ld do the deed of darkness, thou wouldst say.

BAWD. Your honour knows what 'tis to say well enough.

LYSIMACHUS. Well, call forth, call forth.

BOULT. For flesh and blood, sir, white and red, you shall see a rose; and she were a rose indeed, if she had but —

LYSIMACHUS. What, prithee?

BOULT. O, sir, I can be modest.

LYSIMACHUS. That dignifies the renown of a bawd, no less than it gives a good report to a number to be chaste.

[Exit Boult.]

BAWD. Here comes that which grows to the stalk; never plucked yet, I can assure you.

[Re-enter Boult with Marina.]

Is she not a fair creature?

LYSIMACHUS. 'Faith, she would serve after a long voyage at sea. Well, there's for you: leave us.

BAWD. I beseech your honour, give me leave: a word, and I'll have done presently.

LYSIMACHUS. I beseech you, do.

BAWD. [To Marina.] First, I would have you note, this is an honourable man.

MARINA. I desire to find him so, that I may worthily note him.

BAWD. Next, he's the governor of this country, and a man whom I am bound to.

MARINA. If he govern the country, you are bound to him indeed; but how honourable he is in that, I know not.

BAWD. Pray you, without any more virginal fencing, will you use him kindly? He will line your apron with gold.

MARINA. What he will do graciously, I will thankfully receive.

LYSIMACHUS. Ha' you done?

BAWD. My lord, she's not paced yet: you must take some pains to work her to your manage. Come, we will leave his honour and her together. Go thy ways.

[Exeunt Bawd, Pandar, and Boult.]

LYSIMACHUS. Now, pretty one, how long have you been at this trade?

MARINA. What trade, sir?

LYSIMACHUS. Why, I cannot name't but I shall offend.

MARINA. I cannot be offended with my trade. Please you to name it.

LYSIMACHUS. How long have you been of this profession?

MARINA. E'er since I can remember?

LYSIMACHUS. Did you go to't so young? Were you a gamester at five or at seven?

MARINA. Earlier, too, sir, if now I be one.

LYSIMACHUS. Why, the house you dwell in proclaims you to be a creature of sale.

MARINA. Do you know this house to be a place of such resort, and will come into 't? I hear say you are of honourable parts, and are the governor of this place.

LYSIMACHUS. Why, hath your principal made known unto you who I am?

MARINA. Who is my principal?

LYSIMACHUS. Why, your herb-woman; she that sets seeds and roots of shame and iniquity. O, you have heard something of my power, and so stand aloof for more serious wooing. But I protest to thee, pretty one, my authority shall not see thee, or else look friendly upon thee. Come, bring me to some private place: come, come.

MARINA. If you were born to honour, show it now; If put upon you, make the judgement good That thought you worthy of it.

LYSIMACHUS. How 's this? how 's this? Some more; be sage.

MARINA. For me, That am a maid, though most ungentle fortune Have placed me in this sty, where, since I came, Diseases have been sold dearer than physic, O, that the gods Would set me free from this unhallow'd place, Though they did change me to the meanest bird That flies i' the purer air!

LYSIMACHUS. I did not think Thou couldst have spoke so well; ne'er dream'd thou couldst. Had I brought hither a corrupted mind, Thy speech had alter'd it. Hold, here 's gold for thee: Persever in that clear way thou goest, And the gods strengthen thee!

MARINA. The good gods preserve you!

LYSIMACHUS. For me, be you thoughten That I came with no ill intent; for to me The very doors and windows savour vilely. Fare thee well. Thou art a piece of virtue, and I doubt not but thy training hath been noble. Hold, here's more gold for thee. A curse upon him, die he like a thief, That robs thee of thy goodness! If thou dost Hear from me, it shall be for thy good.

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