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The Two Noble Kinsmen
by William Shakespeare and John Fletcher [Apocrypha]
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THE TWO NOBLE KINSMEN:

Presented at the Blackfriers by the Kings Maiesties servants, with great applause:

Written by the memorable Worthies of their time;

Mr. John Fletcher, Gent., and Mr. William Shakspeare, Gent.

Printed at London by Tho. Cotes, for John Waterson: and are to be sold at the signe of the Crowne in Pauls Church-yard. 1634.



(The Persons represented in the Play.

Hymen, Theseus, Hippolita, Bride to Theseus Emelia, Sister to Theseus [Emelia's Woman], Nymphs, Three Queens, Three valiant Knights, Palamon, and Arcite, The two Noble Kinsmen, in love with fair Emelia [Valerius], Perithous, [A Herald], [A Gentleman], [A Messenger], [A Servant], [Wooer], [Keeper], Jaylor, His Daughter, in love with Palamon [His brother], [A Doctor], [4] Countreymen, [2 Friends of the Jaylor], [3 Knights], [Nel, and other] Wenches, A Taborer, Gerrold, A Schoolmaster.)



PROLOGVE.

[Florish.]

New Playes, and Maydenheads, are neare a kin, Much follow'd both, for both much mony g'yn, If they stand sound, and well: And a good Play (Whose modest Sceanes blush on his marriage day, And shake to loose his honour) is like hir That after holy Tye and first nights stir Yet still is Modestie, and still retaines More of the maid to sight, than Husbands paines; We pray our Play may be so; For I am sure It has a noble Breeder, and a pure, A learned, and a Poet never went More famous yet twixt Po and silver Trent: Chaucer (of all admir'd) the Story gives, There constant to Eternity it lives. If we let fall the Noblenesse of this, And the first sound this child heare, be a hisse, How will it shake the bones of that good man, And make him cry from under ground, 'O fan From me the witles chaffe of such a wrighter That blastes my Bayes, and my fam'd workes makes lighter Then Robin Hood!' This is the feare we bring; For to say Truth, it were an endlesse thing, And too ambitious, to aspire to him, Weake as we are, and almost breathlesse swim In this deepe water. Do but you hold out Your helping hands, and we shall take about, And something doe to save us: You shall heare Sceanes, though below his Art, may yet appeare Worth two houres travell. To his bones sweet sleepe: Content to you. If this play doe not keepe A little dull time from us, we perceave Our losses fall so thicke, we must needs leave. [Florish.]



Actus Primus.



[Scaena 1.] (Athens. Before a temple.)

[Enter Hymen with a Torch burning: a Boy, in a white Robe before singing, and strewing Flowres: After Hymen, a Nimph, encompast in her Tresses, bearing a wheaten Garland. Then Theseus betweene two other Nimphs with wheaten Chaplets on their heades. Then Hipolita the Bride, lead by Pirithous, and another holding a Garland over her head (her Tresses likewise hanging.) After her Emilia holding up her Traine. (Artesius and Attendants.)]

The Song, [Musike.]

Roses their sharpe spines being gon, Not royall in their smels alone, But in their hew. Maiden Pinckes, of odour faint, Dazies smel-lesse, yet most quaint And sweet Time true.

Prim-rose first borne child of Ver, Merry Spring times Herbinger, With her bels dimme. Oxlips, in their Cradles growing, Mary-golds, on death beds blowing, Larkes-heeles trymme.

All deere natures children sweete, Ly fore Bride and Bridegroomes feete, [Strew Flowers.] Blessing their sence. Not an angle of the aire, Bird melodious, or bird faire, Is absent hence.

The Crow, the slaundrous Cuckoe, nor The boding Raven, nor Chough hore Nor chattring Pie, May on our Bridehouse pearch or sing, Or with them any discord bring, But from it fly.

[Enter 3. Queenes in Blacke, with vailes staind, with imperiall Crownes. The 1. Queene fals downe at the foote of Theseus; The 2. fals downe at the foote of Hypolita. The 3. before Emilia.]

1. QUEEN.

For pitties sake and true gentilities, Heare, and respect me.

2. QUEEN.

For your Mothers sake, And as you wish your womb may thrive with faire ones, Heare and respect me.

3. QUEEN

Now for the love of him whom Iove hath markd The honour of your Bed, and for the sake Of cleere virginity, be Advocate For us, and our distresses. This good deede Shall raze you out o'th Booke of Trespasses All you are set downe there.

THESEUS.

Sad Lady, rise.

HIPPOLITA.

Stand up.

EMILIA.

No knees to me. What woman I may steed that is distrest, Does bind me to her.

THESEUS.

What's your request? Deliver you for all.

1. QUEEN.

We are 3. Queenes, whose Soveraignes fel before The wrath of cruell Creon; who endured The Beakes of Ravens, Tallents of the Kights, And pecks of Crowes, in the fowle feilds of Thebs. He will not suffer us to burne their bones, To urne their ashes, nor to take th' offence Of mortall loathsomenes from the blest eye Of holy Phoebus, but infects the windes With stench of our slaine Lords. O pitty, Duke: Thou purger of the earth, draw thy feard Sword That does good turnes to'th world; give us the Bones Of our dead Kings, that we may Chappell them; And of thy boundles goodnes take some note That for our crowned heades we have no roofe, Save this which is the Lyons, and the Beares, And vault to every thing.

THESEUS.

Pray you, kneele not: I was transported with your Speech, and suffer'd Your knees to wrong themselves; I have heard the fortunes Of your dead Lords, which gives me such lamenting As wakes my vengeance, and revenge for'em, King Capaneus was your Lord: the day That he should marry you, at such a season, As now it is with me, I met your Groome, By Marsis Altar; you were that time faire, Not Iunos Mantle fairer then your Tresses, Nor in more bounty spread her. Your wheaten wreathe Was then nor threashd, nor blasted; Fortune at you Dimpled her Cheeke with smiles: Hercules our kinesman (Then weaker than your eies) laide by his Club, He tumbled downe upon his Nemean hide And swore his sinews thawd: O greife, and time, Fearefull consumers, you will all devoure.

1. QUEEN.

O, I hope some God, Some God hath put his mercy in your manhood Whereto heel infuse powre, and presse you forth Our undertaker.

THESEUS.

O no knees, none, Widdow, Vnto the Helmeted Belona use them, And pray for me your Souldier. Troubled I am. [turnes away.]

2. QUEEN.

Honoured Hypolita, Most dreaded Amazonian, that hast slaine The Sith-tuskd Bore; that with thy Arme as strong As it is white, wast neere to make the male To thy Sex captive, but that this thy Lord, Borne to uphold Creation in that honour First nature stilde it in, shrunke thee into The bownd thou wast ore-flowing, at once subduing Thy force, and thy affection: Soldiresse That equally canst poize sternenes with pitty, Whom now I know hast much more power on him Then ever he had on thee, who ow'st his strength And his Love too, who is a Servant for The Tenour of thy Speech: Deere Glasse of Ladies, Bid him that we, whom flaming war doth scortch, Vnder the shaddow of his Sword may coole us: Require him he advance it ore our heades; Speak't in a womans key: like such a woman As any of us three; weepe ere you faile; Lend us a knee; But touch the ground for us no longer time Then a Doves motion, when the head's pluckt off: Tell him if he i'th blood cizd field lay swolne, Showing the Sun his Teeth, grinning at the Moone, What you would doe.

HIPPOLITA.

Poore Lady, say no more: I had as leife trace this good action with you As that whereto I am going, and never yet Went I so willing way. My Lord is taken Hart deepe with your distresse: Let him consider: Ile speake anon.

3. QUEEN.

O my petition was [kneele to Emilia.] Set downe in yce, which by hot greefe uncandied Melts into drops, so sorrow, wanting forme, Is prest with deeper matter.

EMILIA.

Pray stand up, Your greefe is written in your cheeke.

3. QUEEN.

O woe, You cannot reade it there, there through my teares— Like wrinckled peobles in a glassie streame You may behold 'em. Lady, Lady, alacke, He that will all the Treasure know o'th earth Must know the Center too; he that will fish For my least minnow, let him lead his line To catch one at my heart. O pardon me: Extremity, that sharpens sundry wits, Makes me a Foole.

EMILIA.

Pray you say nothing, pray you: Who cannot feele nor see the raine, being in't, Knowes neither wet nor dry: if that you were The ground-peece of some Painter, I would buy you T'instruct me gainst a Capitall greefe indeed— Such heart peirc'd demonstration; but, alas, Being a naturall Sifter of our Sex Your sorrow beates so ardently upon me, That it shall make a counter reflect gainst My Brothers heart, and warme it to some pitty, Though it were made of stone: pray, have good comfort.

THESEUS.

Forward to'th Temple, leave not out a Iot O'th sacred Ceremony.

1. QUEEN.

O, This Celebration Will long last, and be more costly then Your Suppliants war: Remember that your Fame Knowles in the eare o'th world: what you doe quickly Is not done rashly; your first thought is more Then others laboured meditance: your premeditating More then their actions: But, oh Iove! your actions, Soone as they mooves, as Asprayes doe the fish, Subdue before they touch: thinke, deere Duke, thinke What beds our slaine Kings have.

2. QUEEN.

What greifes our beds, That our deere Lords have none.

3. QUEEN.

None fit for 'th dead: Those that with Cordes, Knives, drams precipitance, Weary of this worlds light, have to themselves Beene deathes most horrid Agents, humaine grace Affords them dust and shaddow.

1. QUEEN.

But our Lords Ly blistring fore the visitating Sunne, And were good Kings, when living.

THESEUS.

It is true, and I will give you comfort, To give your dead Lords graves: the which to doe, Must make some worke with Creon.

1. QUEEN.

And that worke presents it selfe to'th doing: Now twill take forme, the heates are gone to morrow. Then, booteles toyle must recompence it selfe With it's owne sweat; Now he's secure, Not dreames we stand before your puissance Wrinching our holy begging in our eyes To make petition cleere.

2. QUEEN.

Now you may take him, drunke with his victory.

3. QUEEN.

And his Army full of Bread, and sloth.

THESEUS.

Artesius, that best knowest How to draw out fit to this enterprise The prim'st for this proceeding, and the number To carry such a businesse, forth and levy Our worthiest Instruments, whilst we despatch This grand act of our life, this daring deede Of Fate in wedlocke.

1. QUEEN.

Dowagers, take hands; Let us be Widdowes to our woes: delay Commends us to a famishing hope.

ALL.

Farewell.

2. QUEEN.

We come unseasonably: But when could greefe Cull forth, as unpanged judgement can, fit'st time For best solicitation.

THESEUS.

Why, good Ladies, This is a service, whereto I am going, Greater then any was; it more imports me Then all the actions that I have foregone, Or futurely can cope.

1. QUEEN.

The more proclaiming Our suit shall be neglected: when her Armes Able to locke Iove from a Synod, shall By warranting Moone-light corslet thee, oh, when Her twyning Cherries shall their sweetnes fall Vpon thy tastefull lips, what wilt thou thinke Of rotten Kings or blubberd Queenes, what care For what thou feelst not? what thou feelst being able To make Mars spurne his Drom. O, if thou couch But one night with her, every howre in't will Take hostage of thee for a hundred, and Thou shalt remember nothing more then what That Banket bids thee too.

HIPPOLITA.

Though much unlike [Kneeling.] You should be so transported, as much sorry I should be such a Suitour; yet I thinke, Did I not by th'abstayning of my joy, Which breeds a deeper longing, cure their surfeit That craves a present medcine, I should plucke All Ladies scandall on me. Therefore, Sir, As I shall here make tryall of my prayres, Either presuming them to have some force, Or sentencing for ay their vigour dombe: Prorogue this busines we are going about, and hang Your Sheild afore your Heart, about that necke Which is my ffee, and which I freely lend To doe these poore Queenes service.

ALL QUEENS.

Oh helpe now, Our Cause cries for your knee.

EMILIA.

If you grant not [Kneeling.] My Sister her petition in that force, With that Celerity and nature, which Shee makes it in, from henceforth ile not dare To aske you any thing, nor be so hardy Ever to take a Husband.

THESEUS.

Pray stand up. I am entreating of my selfe to doe That which you kneele to have me. Pyrithous, Leade on the Bride; get you and pray the Gods For successe, and returne; omit not any thing In the pretended Celebration. Queenes, Follow your Soldier. As before, hence you [to Artesius] And at the banckes of Aulis meete us with The forces you can raise, where we shall finde The moytie of a number, for a busines More bigger look't. Since that our Theame is haste, I stamp this kisse upon thy currant lippe; Sweete, keepe it as my Token. Set you forward, For I will see you gone. [Exeunt towards the Temple.] Farewell, my beauteous Sister: Pyrithous, Keepe the feast full, bate not an howre on't.

PERITHOUS.

Sir, Ile follow you at heeles; The Feasts solempnity Shall want till your returne.

THESEUS.

Cosen, I charge you Boudge not from Athens; We shall be returning Ere you can end this Feast, of which, I pray you, Make no abatement; once more, farewell all.

1. QUEEN.

Thus do'st thou still make good the tongue o'th world.

2. QUEEN.

And earnst a Deity equal with Mars.

3. QUEEN.

If not above him, for Thou being but mortall makest affections bend To Godlike honours; they themselves, some say, Grone under such a Mastry.

THESEUS.

As we are men, Thus should we doe; being sensually subdude, We loose our humane tytle. Good cheere, Ladies. [Florish.] Now turne we towards your Comforts. [Exeunt.]



Scaena 2. (Thebs).

[Enter Palamon, and Arcite.]

ARCITE.

Deere Palamon, deerer in love then Blood And our prime Cosen, yet unhardned in The Crimes of nature; Let us leave the Citty Thebs, and the temptings in't, before we further Sully our glosse of youth: And here to keepe in abstinence we shame As in Incontinence; for not to swim I'th aide o'th Current were almost to sincke, At least to frustrate striving, and to follow The common Streame, twold bring us to an Edy Where we should turne or drowne; if labour through, Our gaine but life, and weakenes.

PALAMON.

Your advice Is cride up with example: what strange ruins Since first we went to Schoole, may we perceive Walking in Thebs? Skars, and bare weedes The gaine o'th Martialist, who did propound To his bold ends honour, and golden Ingots, Which though he won, he had not, and now flurted By peace for whom he fought: who then shall offer To Marsis so scornd Altar? I doe bleede When such I meete, and wish great Iuno would Resume her ancient fit of Ielouzie To get the Soldier worke, that peace might purge For her repletion, and retaine anew Her charitable heart now hard, and harsher Then strife or war could be.

ARCITE.

Are you not out? Meete you no ruine but the Soldier in The Cranckes and turnes of Thebs? you did begin As if you met decaies of many kindes: Perceive you none, that doe arowse your pitty But th'un-considerd Soldier?

PALAMON.

Yes, I pitty Decaies where ere I finde them, but such most That, sweating in an honourable Toyle, Are paide with yce to coole 'em.

ARCITE.

Tis not this I did begin to speake of: This is vertue Of no respect in Thebs; I spake of Thebs How dangerous if we will keepe our Honours, It is for our resyding, where every evill Hath a good cullor; where eve'ry seeming good's A certaine evill, where not to be ev'n Iumpe As they are, here were to be strangers, and Such things to be, meere Monsters.

PALAMON.

Tis in our power, (Vnlesse we feare that Apes can Tutor's) to Be Masters of our manners: what neede I Affect anothers gate, which is not catching Where there is faith, or to be fond upon Anothers way of speech, when by mine owne I may be reasonably conceiv'd; sav'd too, Speaking it truly? why am I bound By any generous bond to follow him Followes his Taylor, haply so long untill The follow'd make pursuit? or let me know, Why mine owne Barber is unblest, with him My poore Chinne too, for tis not Cizard iust To such a Favorites glasse: What Cannon is there That does command my Rapier from my hip To dangle't in my hand, or to go tip toe Before the streete be foule? Either I am The fore-horse in the Teame, or I am none That draw i'th sequent trace: these poore sleight sores Neede not a plantin; That which rips my bosome Almost to'th heart's—

ARCITE.

Our Vncle Creon.

PALAMON.

He, A most unbounded Tyrant, whose successes Makes heaven unfeard, and villany assured Beyond its power there's nothing, almost puts Faith in a feavour, and deifies alone Voluble chance; who onely attributes The faculties of other Instruments To his owne Nerves and act; Commands men service, And what they winne in't, boot and glory; on(e) That feares not to do harm; good, dares not; Let The blood of mine that's sibbe to him be suckt From me with Leeches; Let them breake and fall Off me with that corruption.

ARCITE.

Cleere spirited Cozen, Lets leave his Court, that we may nothing share Of his lowd infamy: for our milke Will relish of the pasture, and we must Be vile or disobedient, not his kinesmen In blood, unlesse in quality.

PALAMON.

Nothing truer: I thinke the Ecchoes of his shames have dea'ft The eares of heav'nly Iustice: widdows cryes Descend againe into their throates, and have not

[enter Valerius.]

Due audience of the Gods.—Valerius!

VALERIUS.

The King cals for you; yet be leaden footed, Till his great rage be off him. Phebus, when He broke his whipstocke and exclaimd against The Horses of the Sun, but whisperd too The lowdenesse of his Fury.

PALAMON.

Small windes shake him: But whats the matter?

VALERIUS.

Theseus (who where he threates appals,) hath sent Deadly defyance to him, and pronounces Ruine to Thebs; who is at hand to seale The promise of his wrath.

ARCITE.

Let him approach; But that we feare the Gods in him, he brings not A jot of terrour to us; Yet what man Thirds his owne worth (the case is each of ours) When that his actions dregd with minde assurd Tis bad he goes about?

PALAMON.

Leave that unreasond. Our services stand now for Thebs, not Creon, Yet to be neutrall to him were dishonour; Rebellious to oppose: therefore we must With him stand to the mercy of our Fate, Who hath bounded our last minute.

ARCITE.

So we must. Ist sed this warres a foote? or it shall be, On faile of some condition?

VALERIUS.

Tis in motion The intelligence of state came in the instant With the defier.

PALAMON.

Lets to the king, who, were he A quarter carrier of that honour which His Enemy come in, the blood we venture Should be as for our health, which were not spent, Rather laide out for purchase: but, alas, Our hands advanc'd before our hearts, what will The fall o'th stroke doe damage?

ARCITE.

Let th'event, That never erring Arbitratour, tell us When we know all our selves, and let us follow The becking of our chance. [Exeunt.]



Scaena 3. (Before the gates of Athens.)

[Enter Pirithous, Hipolita, Emilia.]

PERITHOUS.

No further.

HIPPOLITA.

Sir, farewell; repeat my wishes To our great Lord, of whose succes I dare not Make any timerous question; yet I wish him Exces and overflow of power, and't might be, To dure ill-dealing fortune: speede to him, Store never hurtes good Gouernours.

PERITHOUS.

Though I know His Ocean needes not my poore drops, yet they Must yeild their tribute there. My precious Maide, Those best affections, that the heavens infuse In their best temperd peices, keepe enthroand In your deare heart.

EMILIA.

Thanckes, Sir. Remember me To our all royall Brother, for whose speede The great Bellona ile sollicite; and Since in our terrene State petitions are not Without giftes understood, Ile offer to her What I shall be advised she likes: our hearts Are in his Army, in his Tent.

HIPPOLITA.

In's bosome: We have bin Soldiers, and wee cannot weepe When our Friends don their helmes, or put to sea, Or tell of Babes broachd on the Launce, or women That have sod their Infants in (and after eate them) The brine, they wept at killing 'em; Then if You stay to see of us such Spincsters, we Should hold you here for ever.

PERITHOUS.

Peace be to you, As I pursue this war, which shall be then Beyond further requiring. [Exit Pir.]

EMILIA.

How his longing Followes his Friend! since his depart, his sportes Though craving seriousnes, and skill, past slightly His careles execution, where nor gaine Made him regard, or losse consider; but Playing one busines in his hand, another Directing in his head, his minde, nurse equall To these so diffring Twyns—have you observ'd him, Since our great Lord departed?

HIPPOLITA.

With much labour, And I did love him fort: they two have Cabind In many as dangerous, as poore a Corner, Perill and want contending; they have skift Torrents whose roring tyranny and power I'th least of these was dreadfull, and they have Fought out together, where Deaths-selfe was lodgd, Yet fate hath brought them off: Their knot of love, Tide, weau'd, intangled, with so true, so long, And with a finger of so deepe a cunning, May be outworne, never undone. I thinke Theseus cannot be umpire to himselfe, Cleaving his conscience into twaine and doing Each side like Iustice, which he loves best.

EMILIA.

Doubtlesse There is a best, and reason has no manners To say it is not you: I was acquainted Once with a time, when I enjoyd a Play-fellow; You were at wars, when she the grave enrichd, Who made too proud the Bed, tooke leave o th Moone (Which then lookt pale at parting) when our count Was each eleven.

HIPPOLITA.

Twas Flaui(n)a.

EMILIA.

Yes. You talke of Pirithous and Theseus love; Theirs has more ground, is more maturely seasond, More buckled with strong Iudgement and their needes The one of th'other may be said to water [2. Hearses ready with Palamon: and Arcite: the 3. Queenes. Theseus: and his Lordes ready.] Their intertangled rootes of love; but I And shee I sigh and spoke of were things innocent, Lou'd for we did, and like the Elements That know not what, nor why, yet doe effect Rare issues by their operance, our soules Did so to one another; what she lik'd, Was then of me approov'd, what not, condemd, No more arraignment; the flowre that I would plucke And put betweene my breasts (then but beginning To swell about the blossome) oh, she would long Till shee had such another, and commit it To the like innocent Cradle, where Phenix like They dide in perfume: on my head no toy But was her patterne; her affections (pretty, Though, happely, her careles were) I followed For my most serious decking; had mine eare Stolne some new aire, or at adventure humd on From musicall Coynadge, why it was a note Whereon her spirits would sojourne (rather dwell on) And sing it in her slumbers. This rehearsall (Which ev'ry innocent wots well comes in Like old importments bastard) has this end, That the true love tweene Mayde, and mayde, may be More then in sex idividuall.

HIPPOLITA.

Y'are out of breath And this high speeded pace, is but to say That you shall never like the Maide Flavina Love any that's calld Man.

EMILIA.

I am sure I shall not.

HIPPOLITA.

Now, alacke, weake Sister, I must no more beleeve thee in this point (Though in't I know thou dost beleeve thy selfe,) Then I will trust a sickely appetite, That loathes even as it longs; but, sure, my Sister, If I were ripe for your perswasion, you Have saide enough to shake me from the Arme Of the all noble Theseus, for whose fortunes I will now in, and kneele with great assurance, That we, more then his Pirothous, possesse The high throne in his heart.

EMILIA.

I am not Against your faith; yet I continew mine. [Exeunt. Cornets.]



Scaena 4. (A field before Thebes. Dead bodies lying on the ground.)

[A Battaile strooke within: Then a Retrait: Florish. Then Enter Theseus (victor), (Herald and Attendants:) the three Queenes meete him, and fall on their faces before him.]

1. QUEEN.

To thee no starre be darke.

2. QUEEN.

Both heaven and earth Friend thee for ever.

3. QUEEN.

All the good that may Be wishd upon thy head, I cry Amen too't.

THESEUS.

Th'imparciall Gods, who from the mounted heavens View us their mortall Heard, behold who erre, And in their time chastice: goe and finde out The bones of your dead Lords, and honour them With treble Ceremonie; rather then a gap Should be in their deere rights, we would supply't. But those we will depute, which shall invest You in your dignities, and even each thing Our hast does leave imperfect: So, adiew, And heavens good eyes looke on you. What are those? [Exeunt Queenes.]

HERALD.

Men of great quality, as may be judgd By their appointment; Sone of Thebs have told's They are Sisters children, Nephewes to the King.

THESEUS.

By'th Helme of Mars, I saw them in the war, Like to a paire of Lions, smeard with prey, Make lanes in troopes agast. I fixt my note Constantly on them; for they were a marke Worth a god's view: what prisoner was't that told me When I enquired their names?

HERALD.

Wi'leave, they'r called Arcite and Palamon.

THESEUS.

Tis right: those, those. They are not dead?

HERALD.

Nor in a state of life: had they bin taken, When their last hurts were given, twas possible [3. Hearses ready.] They might have bin recovered; Yet they breathe And haue the name of men.

THESEUS.

Then like men use 'em. The very lees of such (millions of rates) Exceede the wine of others: all our Surgions Convent in their behoofe; our richest balmes Rather then niggard, waft: their lives concerne us Much more then Thebs is worth: rather then have 'em Freed of this plight, and in their morning state (Sound and at liberty) I would 'em dead; But forty thousand fold we had rather have 'em Prisoners to us then death. Beare 'em speedily From our kinde aire, to them unkinde, and minister What man to man may doe—for our sake more, Since I have knowne frights, fury, friends beheastes, Loves provocations, zeale, a mistris Taske, Desire of liberty, a feavour, madnes, Hath set a marke which nature could not reach too Without some imposition: sicknes in will Or wrastling strength in reason. For our Love And great Appollos mercy, all our best Their best skill tender. Leade into the Citty, Where having bound things scatterd, we will post [Florish.] To Athens for(e) our Army [Exeunt. Musicke.]



Scaena 5. (Another part of the same.)

[Enter the Queenes with the Hearses of their Knightes, in a Funerall Solempnity, &c.]

Vrnes and odours bring away, Vapours, sighes, darken the day; Our dole more deadly lookes than dying; Balmes, and Gummes, and heavy cheeres, Sacred vials fill'd with teares, And clamors through the wild ayre flying.

Come all sad and solempne Showes, That are quick-eyd pleasures foes; We convent nought else but woes. We convent, &c.

3. QUEEN.

This funeral path brings to your housholds grave: Ioy ceaze on you againe: peace sleepe with him.

2. QUEEN.

And this to yours.

1. QUEEN.

Yours this way: Heavens lend A thousand differing waies to one sure end.

3. QUEEN.

This world's a Citty full of straying Streetes, And Death's the market place, where each one meetes. [Exeunt severally.]



Actus Secundus.



Scaena 1. (Athens. A garden, with a prison in the background.)

[Enter Iailor, and Wooer.]

IAILOR.

I may depart with little, while I live; some thing I may cast to you, not much: Alas, the Prison I keepe, though it be for great ones, yet they seldome come; Before one Salmon, you shall take a number of Minnowes. I am given out to be better lyn'd then it can appeare to me report is a true Speaker: I would I were really that I am deliverd to be. Marry, what I have (be it what it will) I will assure upon my daughter at the day of my death.

WOOER.

Sir, I demaund no more then your owne offer, and I will estate your Daughter in what I have promised.

IAILOR.

Wel, we will talke more of this, when the solemnity is past. But have you a full promise of her? When that shall be seene, I tender my consent.

[Enter Daughter.]

WOOER.

I have Sir; here shee comes.

IAILOR.

Your Friend and I have chanced to name you here, upon the old busines: But no more of that now; so soone as the Court hurry is over, we will have an end of it: I'th meane time looke tenderly to the two Prisoners. I can tell you they are princes.

DAUGHTER.

These strewings are for their Chamber; tis pitty they are in prison, and twer pitty they should be out: I doe thinke they have patience to make any adversity asham'd; the prison it selfe is proud of 'em; and they have all the world in their Chamber.

IAILOR.

They are fam'd to be a paire of absolute men.

DAUGHTER.

By my troth, I think Fame but stammers 'em; they stand a greise above the reach of report.

IAILOR.

I heard them reported in the Battaile to be the only doers.

DAUGHTER.

Nay, most likely, for they are noble suffrers; I mervaile how they would have lookd had they beene Victors, that with such a constant Nobility enforce a freedome out of Bondage, making misery their Mirth, and affliction a toy to jest at.

IAILOR.

Doe they so?

DAUGHTER.

It seemes to me they have no more sence of their Captivity, then I of ruling Athens: they eate well, looke merrily, discourse of many things, but nothing of their owne restraint, and disasters: yet sometime a devided sigh, martyrd as 'twer i'th deliverance, will breake from one of them; when the other presently gives it so sweete a rebuke, that I could wish my selfe a Sigh to be so chid, or at least a Sigher to be comforted.

WOOER.

I never saw 'em.

IAILOR.

The Duke himselfe came privately in the night,

[Enter Palamon, and Arcite, above.]

and so did they: what the reason of it is, I know not: Looke, yonder they are! that's Arcite lookes out.

DAUGHTER.

No, Sir, no, that's Palamon: Arcite is the lower of the twaine; you may perceive a part of him.

IAILOR.

Goe too, leave your pointing; they would not make us their object; out of their sight.

DAUGHTER.

It is a holliday to looke on them: Lord, the diffrence of men! [Exeunt.]



Scaena 2. (The prison)

[Enter Palamon, and Arcite in prison.]

PALAMON.

How doe you, Noble Cosen?

ARCITE.

How doe you, Sir?

PALAMON.

Why strong inough to laugh at misery, And beare the chance of warre, yet we are prisoners, I feare, for ever, Cosen.

ARCITE.

I beleeve it, And to that destiny have patiently Laide up my houre to come.

PALAMON.

O Cosen Arcite, Where is Thebs now? where is our noble Country? Where are our friends, and kindreds? never more Must we behold those comforts, never see The hardy youthes strive for the Games of honour (Hung with the painted favours of their Ladies, Like tall Ships under saile) then start among'st 'em And as an Eastwind leave 'en all behinde us, Like lazy Clowdes, whilst Palamon and Arcite, Even in the wagging of a wanton leg Out-stript the peoples praises, won the Garlands, Ere they have time to wish 'em ours. O never Shall we two exercise, like Twyns of honour, Our Armes againe, and feele our fyry horses Like proud Seas under us: our good Swords now (Better the red-eyd god of war nev'r wore) Ravishd our sides, like age must run to rust, And decke the Temples of those gods that hate us: These hands shall never draw'em out like lightning, To blast whole Armies more.

ARCITE.

No, Palamon, Those hopes are Prisoners with us; here we are And here the graces of our youthes must wither Like a too-timely Spring; here age must finde us, And, which is heaviest, Palamon, unmarried; The sweete embraces of a loving wife, Loden with kisses, armd with thousand Cupids Shall never claspe our neckes, no issue know us, No figures of our selves shall we ev'r see, To glad our age, and like young Eagles teach 'em Boldly to gaze against bright armes, and say: 'Remember what your fathers were, and conquer.' The faire-eyd Maides, shall weepe our Banishments, And in their Songs, curse ever-blinded fortune, Till shee for shame see what a wrong she has done To youth and nature. This is all our world; We shall know nothing here but one another, Heare nothing but the Clocke that tels our woes. The Vine shall grow, but we shall never see it: Sommer shall come, and with her all delights; But dead-cold winter must inhabite here still.

PALAMON.

Tis too true, Arcite. To our Theban houndes, That shooke the aged Forrest with their ecchoes, No more now must we halloa, no more shake Our pointed Iavelyns, whilst the angry Swine Flyes like a parthian quiver from our rages, Strucke with our well-steeld Darts: All valiant uses (The foode, and nourishment of noble mindes,) In us two here shall perish; we shall die (Which is the curse of honour) lastly Children of greife, and Ignorance.

ARCITE.

Yet, Cosen, Even from the bottom of these miseries, From all that fortune can inflict upon us, I see two comforts rysing, two meere blessings, If the gods please: to hold here a brave patience, And the enjoying of our greefes together. Whilst Palamon is with me, let me perish If I thinke this our prison.

PALAMON.

Certeinly, Tis a maine goodnes, Cosen, that our fortunes Were twyn'd together; tis most true, two soules Put in two noble Bodies—let 'em suffer The gaule of hazard, so they grow together— Will never sincke; they must not, say they could: A willing man dies sleeping, and all's done.

ARCITE.

Shall we make worthy uses of this place That all men hate so much?

PALAMON.

How, gentle Cosen?

ARCITE.

Let's thinke this prison holy sanctuary, To keepe us from corruption of worse men. We are young and yet desire the waies of honour, That liberty and common Conversation, The poyson of pure spirits, might like women Wooe us to wander from. What worthy blessing Can be but our Imaginations May make it ours? And heere being thus together, We are an endles mine to one another; We are one anothers wife, ever begetting New birthes of love; we are father, friends, acquaintance; We are, in one another, Families, I am your heire, and you are mine: This place Is our Inheritance, no hard Oppressour Dare take this from us; here, with a little patience, We shall live long, and loving: No surfeits seeke us: The hand of war hurts none here, nor the Seas Swallow their youth: were we at liberty, A wife might part us lawfully, or busines; Quarrels consume us, Envy of ill men Grave our acquaintance; I might sicken, Cosen, Where you should never know it, and so perish Without your noble hand to close mine eies, Or praiers to the gods: a thousand chaunces, Were we from hence, would seaver us.

PALAMON.

You have made me (I thanke you, Cosen Arcite) almost wanton With my Captivity: what a misery It is to live abroade, and every where! Tis like a Beast, me thinkes: I finde the Court here— I am sure, a more content; and all those pleasures That wooe the wils of men to vanity, I see through now, and am sufficient To tell the world, tis but a gaudy shaddow, That old Time, as he passes by, takes with him. What had we bin, old in the Court of Creon, Where sin is Iustice, lust and ignorance The vertues of the great ones! Cosen Arcite, Had not the loving gods found this place for us, We had died as they doe, ill old men, unwept, And had their Epitaphes, the peoples Curses: Shall I say more?

ARCITE.

I would heare you still.

PALAMON.

Ye shall. Is there record of any two that lov'd Better then we doe, Arcite?

ARCITE.

Sure, there cannot.

PALAMON.

I doe not thinke it possible our friendship Should ever leave us.

ARCITE.

Till our deathes it cannot;

[Enter Emilia and her woman (below).]

And after death our spirits shall be led To those that love eternally. Speake on, Sir.

EMILIA.

This garden has a world of pleasures in't. What Flowre is this?

WOMAN.

Tis calld Narcissus, Madam.

EMILIA.

That was a faire Boy, certaine, but a foole, To love himselfe; were there not maides enough?

ARCITE.

Pray forward.

PALAMON.

Yes.

EMILIA.

Or were they all hard hearted?

WOMAN.

They could not be to one so faire.

EMILIA.

Thou wouldst not.

WOMAN.

I thinke I should not, Madam.

EMILIA.

That's a good wench: But take heede to your kindnes though.

WOMAN.

Why, Madam?

EMILIA.

Men are mad things.

ARCITE.

Will ye goe forward, Cosen?

EMILIA.

Canst not thou worke such flowers in silke, wench?

WOMAN.

Yes.

EMILIA.

Ile have a gowne full of 'em, and of these; This is a pretty colour, wilt not doe Rarely upon a Skirt, wench?

WOMAN.

Deinty, Madam.

ARCITE.

Cosen, Cosen, how doe you, Sir? Why, Palamon?

PALAMON.

Never till now I was in prison, Arcite.

ARCITE.

Why whats the matter, Man?

PALAMON.

Behold, and wonder. By heaven, shee is a Goddesse.

ARCITE.

Ha.

PALAMON.

Doe reverence. She is a Goddesse, Arcite.

EMILIA.

Of all Flowres, me thinkes a Rose is best.

WOMAN.

Why, gentle Madam?

EMILIA.

It is the very Embleme of a Maide. For when the west wind courts her gently, How modestly she blowes, and paints the Sun, With her chaste blushes! When the North comes neere her, Rude and impatient, then, like Chastity, Shee lockes her beauties in her bud againe, And leaves him to base briers.

WOMAN.

Yet, good Madam, Sometimes her modesty will blow so far She fals for't: a Mayde, If shee have any honour, would be loth To take example by her.

EMILIA.

Thou art wanton.

ARCITE.

She is wondrous faire.

PALAMON.

She is beauty extant.

EMILIA.

The Sun grows high, lets walk in: keep these flowers; Weele see how neere Art can come neere their colours. I am wondrous merry hearted, I could laugh now.

WOMAN.

I could lie downe, I am sure.

EMILIA.

And take one with you?

WOMAN.

That's as we bargaine, Madam.

EMILIA.

Well, agree then. [Exeunt Emilia and woman.]

PALAMON.

What thinke you of this beauty?

ARCITE.

Tis a rare one.

PALAMON.

Is't but a rare one?

ARCITE.

Yes, a matchles beauty.

PALAMON.

Might not a man well lose himselfe and love her?

ARCITE.

I cannot tell what you have done, I have; Beshrew mine eyes for't: now I feele my Shackles.

PALAMON.

You love her, then?

ARCITE.

Who would not?

PALAMON.

And desire her?

ARCITE.

Before my liberty.

PALAMON.

I saw her first.

ARCITE.

That's nothing.

PALAMON.

But it shall be.

ARCITE.

I saw her too.

PALAMON.

Yes, but you must not love her.

ARCITE.

I will not as you doe, to worship her, As she is heavenly, and a blessed Goddes; I love her as a woman, to enjoy her: So both may love.

PALAMON.

You shall not love at all.

ARCITE.

Not love at all! Who shall deny me?

PALAMON.

I, that first saw her; I, that tooke possession First with mine eyes of all those beauties In her reveald to mankinde: if thou lou'st her, Or entertain'st a hope to blast my wishes, Thou art a Traytour, Arcite, and a fellow False as thy Title to her: friendship, blood, And all the tyes betweene us I disclaime, If thou once thinke upon her.

ARCITE.

Yes, I love her, And if the lives of all my name lay on it, I must doe so; I love her with my soule: If that will lose ye, farewell, Palamon; I say againe, I love, and in loving her maintaine I am as worthy and as free a lover, And have as just a title to her beauty As any Palamon or any living That is a mans Sonne.

PALAMON.

Have I cald thee friend?

ARCITE.

Yes, and have found me so; why are you mov'd thus? Let me deale coldly with you: am not I Part of your blood, part of your soule? you have told me That I was Palamon, and you were Arcite.

PALAMON.

Yes.

ARCITE.

Am not I liable to those affections, Those joyes, greifes, angers, feares, my friend shall suffer?

PALAMON.

Ye may be.

ARCITE.

Why, then, would you deale so cunningly, So strangely, so vnlike a noble kinesman, To love alone? speake truely: doe you thinke me Vnworthy of her sight?

PALAMON.

No; but unjust, If thou pursue that sight.

ARCITE.

Because an other First sees the Enemy, shall I stand still And let mine honour downe, and never charge?

PALAMON.

Yes, if he be but one.

ARCITE.

But say that one Had rather combat me?

PALAMON.

Let that one say so, And use thy freedome; els if thou pursuest her, Be as that cursed man that hates his Country, A branded villaine.

ARCITE.

You are mad.

PALAMON.

I must be, Till thou art worthy, Arcite; it concernes me, And in this madnes, if I hazard thee And take thy life, I deale but truely.

ARCITE.

Fie, Sir, You play the Childe extreamely: I will love her, I must, I ought to doe so, and I dare; And all this justly.

PALAMON.

O that now, that now Thy false-selfe and thy friend had but this fortune, To be one howre at liberty, and graspe Our good Swords in our hands! I would quickly teach thee What 'twer to filch affection from another: Thou art baser in it then a Cutpurse; Put but thy head out of this window more, And as I have a soule, Ile naile thy life too't.

ARCITE.

Thou dar'st not, foole, thou canst not, thou art feeble. Put my head out? Ile throw my Body out, And leape the garden, when I see her next

[Enter Keeper.]

And pitch between her armes to anger thee.

PALAMON.

No more; the keeper's comming; I shall live To knocke thy braines out with my Shackles.

ARCITE.

Doe.

KEEPER.

By your leave, Gentlemen—

PALAMON.

Now, honest keeper?

KEEPER.

Lord Arcite, you must presently to'th Duke; The cause I know not yet.

ARCITE.

I am ready, keeper.

KEEPER.

Prince Palamon, I must awhile bereave you Of your faire Cosens Company. [Exeunt Arcite, and Keeper.]

PALAMON.

And me too, Even when you please, of life. Why is he sent for? It may be he shall marry her; he's goodly, And like enough the Duke hath taken notice Both of his blood and body: But his falsehood! Why should a friend be treacherous? If that Get him a wife so noble, and so faire, Let honest men ne're love againe. Once more I would but see this faire One. Blessed Garden, And fruite, and flowers more blessed, that still blossom As her bright eies shine on ye! would I were, For all the fortune of my life hereafter, Yon little Tree, yon blooming Apricocke; How I would spread, and fling my wanton armes In at her window; I would bring her fruite Fit for the Gods to feed on: youth and pleasure Still as she tasted should be doubled on her, And if she be not heavenly, I would make her So neere the Gods in nature, they should feare her,

[Enter Keeper.]

And then I am sure she would love me. How now, keeper. Wher's Arcite?

KEEPER.

Banishd: Prince Pirithous Obtained his liberty; but never more Vpon his oth and life must he set foote Vpon this Kingdome.

PALAMON.

Hees a blessed man! He shall see Thebs againe, and call to Armes The bold yong men, that, when he bids 'em charge, Fall on like fire: Arcite shall have a Fortune, If he dare make himselfe a worthy Lover, Yet in the Feild to strike a battle for her; And if he lose her then, he's a cold Coward; How bravely may he beare himselfe to win her If he be noble Arcite—thousand waies. Were I at liberty, I would doe things Of such a vertuous greatnes, that this Lady, This blushing virgine, should take manhood to her And seeke to ravish me.

KEEPER.

My Lord for you I have this charge too—

PALAMON.

To discharge my life?

KEEPER.

No, but from this place to remoove your Lordship: The windowes are too open.

PALAMON.

Devils take 'em, That are so envious to me! pre'thee kill me.

KEEPER.

And hang for't afterward.

PALAMON.

By this good light, Had I a sword I would kill thee.

KEEPER.

Why, my Lord?

PALAMON.

Thou bringst such pelting scuruy news continually Thou art not worthy life. I will not goe.

KEEPER.

Indeede, you must, my Lord.

PALAMON.

May I see the garden?

KEEPER.

Noe.

PALAMON.

Then I am resolud, I will not goe.

KEEPER.

I must constraine you then: and for you are dangerous, Ile clap more yrons on you.

PALAMON.

Doe, good keeper. Ile shake 'em so, ye shall not sleepe; Ile make ye a new Morrisse: must I goe?

KEEPER.

There is no remedy.

PALAMON.

Farewell, kinde window. May rude winde never hurt thee. O, my Lady, If ever thou hast felt what sorrow was, Dreame how I suffer. Come; now bury me. [Exeunt Palamon, and Keeper.]



Scaena 3. (The country near Athens.)

[Enter Arcite.]

ARCITE.

Banishd the kingdome? tis a benefit, A mercy I must thanke 'em for, but banishd The free enjoying of that face I die for, Oh twas a studdied punishment, a death Beyond Imagination: Such a vengeance That, were I old and wicked, all my sins Could never plucke upon me. Palamon, Thou ha'st the Start now, thou shalt stay and see Her bright eyes breake each morning gainst thy window, And let in life into thee; thou shalt feede Vpon the sweetenes of a noble beauty, That nature nev'r exceeded, nor nev'r shall: Good gods! what happines has Palamon! Twenty to one, hee'le come to speake to her, And if she be as gentle as she's faire, I know she's his; he has a Tongue will tame Tempests, and make the wild Rockes wanton. Come what can come, The worst is death; I will not leave the Kingdome. I know mine owne is but a heape of ruins, And no redresse there; if I goe, he has her. I am resolu'd an other shape shall make me, Or end my fortunes. Either way, I am happy: Ile see her, and be neere her, or no more.

[Enter 4. Country people, & one with a garlond before them.]

1. COUNTREYMAN

My Masters, ile be there, that's certaine

2. COUNTREYMAN

And Ile be there.

3. COUNTREYMAN

And I.

4. COUNTREYMAN

Why, then, have with ye, Boyes; Tis but a chiding. Let the plough play to day, ile tick'lt out Of the Iades tailes to morrow.

1. COUNTREYMAN

I am sure To have my wife as jealous as a Turkey: But that's all one; ile goe through, let her mumble.

2. COUNTREYMAN

Clap her aboard to morrow night, and stoa her, And all's made up againe.

3. COUNTREYMAN

I, doe but put a feskue in her fist, and you shall see her Take a new lesson out, and be a good wench. Doe we all hold against the Maying?

4. COUNTREYMAN

Hold? what should aile us?

3. COUNTREYMAN

Arcas will be there.

2. COUNTREYMAN

And Sennois. And Rycas, and 3. better lads nev'r dancd Under green Tree. And yee know what wenches: ha? But will the dainty Domine, the Schoolemaster, Keep touch, doe you thinke? for he do's all, ye know.

3. COUNTREYMAN

Hee'l eate a hornebooke ere he faile: goe too, the matter's too farre driven betweene him and the Tanners daughter, to let slip now, and she must see the Duke, and she must daunce too.

4. COUNTREYMAN

Shall we be lusty?

2. COUNTREYMAN

All the Boyes in Athens blow wind i'th breech on's, and heere ile be and there ile be, for our Towne, and here againe, and there againe: ha, Boyes, heigh for the weavers.

1. COUNTREYMAN

This must be done i'th woods.

4. COUNTREYMAN

O, pardon me.

2. COUNTREYMAN

By any meanes, our thing of learning saies so: Where he himselfe will edifie the Duke Most parlously in our behalfes: hees excellent i'th woods; Bring him to'th plaines, his learning makes no cry.

3. COUNTREYMAN

Weele see the sports, then; every man to's Tackle: And, Sweete Companions, lets rehearse by any meanes, Before the Ladies see us, and doe sweetly, And God knows what May come on't.

4. COUNTREYMAN

Content; the sports once ended, wee'l performe. Away, Boyes and hold.

ARCITE.

By your leaves, honest friends: pray you, whither goe you?

4. COUNTREYMAN

Whither? why, what a question's that?

ARCITE.

Yes, tis a question, to me that know not.

3. COUNTREYMAN

To the Games, my Friend.

2. COUNTREYMAN

Where were you bred, you know it not?

ARCITE.

Not farre, Sir, Are there such Games to day?

1. COUNTREYMAN

Yes, marry, are there: And such as you neuer saw; The Duke himselfe Will be in person there.

ARCITE.

What pastimes are they?

2. COUNTREYMAN

Wrastling, and Running.—Tis a pretty Fellow.

3. COUNTREYMAN

Thou wilt not goe along?

ARCITE.

Not yet, Sir.

4. COUNTREYMAN

Well, Sir, Take your owne time: come, Boyes.

1. COUNTREYMAN

My minde misgives me; This fellow has a veng'ance tricke o'th hip: Marke how his Bodi's made for't

2. COUNTREYMAN

Ile be hangd, though, If he dare venture; hang him, plumb porredge, He wrastle? he rost eggs! Come, lets be gon, Lads. [Exeunt.]

ARCITE.

This is an offerd oportunity I durst not wish for. Well I could have wrestled, The best men calld it excellent, and run— Swifter the winde upon a feild of Corne (Curling the wealthy eares) never flew: Ile venture, And in some poore disguize be there; who knowes Whether my browes may not be girt with garlands? And happines preferre me to a place, Where I may ever dwell in sight of her. [Exit Arcite.]



Scaena 4. (Athens. A room in the prison.)

[Enter Iailors Daughter alone.]

DAUGHTER.

Why should I love this Gentleman? Tis odds He never will affect me; I am base, My Father the meane Keeper of his Prison, And he a prince: To marry him is hopelesse; To be his whore is witles. Out upon't, What pushes are we wenches driven to, When fifteene once has found us! First, I saw him; I (seeing) thought he was a goodly man; He has as much to please a woman in him, (If he please to bestow it so) as ever These eyes yet lookt on. Next, I pittied him, And so would any young wench, o' my Conscience, That ever dream'd, or vow'd her Maydenhead To a yong hansom Man; Then I lov'd him, Extreamely lov'd him, infinitely lov'd him; And yet he had a Cosen, faire as he too. But in my heart was Palamon, and there, Lord, what a coyle he keepes! To heare him Sing in an evening, what a heaven it is! And yet his Songs are sad ones. Fairer spoken Was never Gentleman. When I come in To bring him water in a morning, first He bowes his noble body, then salutes me, thus: 'Faire, gentle Mayde, good morrow; may thy goodnes Get thee a happy husband.' Once he kist me. I lov'd my lips the better ten daies after. Would he would doe so ev'ry day! He greives much, And me as much to see his misery. What should I doe, to make him know I love him? For I would faine enjoy him. Say I ventur'd To set him free? what saies the law then? Thus much For Law, or kindred! I will doe it, And this night, or to morrow, he shall love me. [Exit.]



Scaena 5. (An open place in Athens.)

[Enter Theseus, Hipolita, Pirithous, Emilia: Arcite with a Garland, &c.]

[This short florish of Cornets and Showtes within.]

THESEUS.

You have done worthily; I have not seene, Since Hercules, a man of tougher synewes; What ere you are, you run the best, and wrastle, That these times can allow.

ARCITE.

I am proud to please you.

THESEUS.

What Countrie bred you?

ARCITE.

This; but far off, Prince.

THESEUS.

Are you a Gentleman?

ARCITE.

My father said so; And to those gentle uses gave me life.

THESEUS.

Are you his heire?

ARCITE.

His yongest, Sir.

THESEUS.

Your Father Sure is a happy Sire then: what prooves you?

ARCITE.

A little of all noble Quallities: I could have kept a Hawke, and well have holloa'd To a deepe crie of Dogges; I dare not praise My feat in horsemanship, yet they that knew me Would say it was my best peece: last, and greatest, I would be thought a Souldier.

THESEUS.

You are perfect.

PERITHOUS.

Vpon my soule, a proper man.

EMILIA.

He is so.

PERITHOUS.

How doe you like him, Ladie?

HIPPOLITA.

I admire him; I have not seene so yong a man so noble (If he say true,) of his sort.

EMILIA.

Beleeve, His mother was a wondrous handsome woman; His face, me thinkes, goes that way.

HIPPOLITA.

But his Body And firie minde illustrate a brave Father.

PERITHOUS.

Marke how his vertue, like a hidden Sun, Breakes through his baser garments.

HIPPOLITA.

Hee's well got, sure.

THESEUS.

What made you seeke this place, Sir?

ARCITE.

Noble Theseus, To purchase name, and doe my ablest service To such a well-found wonder as thy worth, For onely in thy Court, of all the world, Dwells faire-eyd honor.

PERITHOUS.

All his words are worthy.

THESEUS.

Sir, we are much endebted to your travell, Nor shall you loose your wish: Perithous, Dispose of this faire Gentleman.

PERITHOUS.

Thankes, Theseus. What ere you are y'ar mine, and I shall give you To a most noble service, to this Lady, This bright yong Virgin; pray, observe her goodnesse; You have honourd hir faire birth-day with your vertues, And as your due y'ar hirs: kisse her faire hand, Sir.

ARCITE.

Sir, y'ar a noble Giver: dearest Bewtie, Thus let me seale my vowd faith: when your Servant (Your most unworthie Creature) but offends you, Command him die, he shall.

EMILIA.

That were too cruell. If you deserve well, Sir, I shall soone see't: Y'ar mine, and somewhat better than your rancke Ile use you.

PERITHOUS.

Ile see you furnish'd, and because you say You are a horseman, I must needs intreat you This after noone to ride, but tis a rough one.

ARCITE.

I like him better, Prince, I shall not then Freeze in my Saddle.

THESEUS.

Sweet, you must be readie, And you, Emilia, and you, Friend, and all, To morrow by the Sun, to doe observance To flowry May, in Dians wood: waite well, Sir, Vpon your Mistris. Emely, I hope He shall not goe a foote.

EMILIA.

That were a shame, Sir, While I have horses: take your choice, and what You want at any time, let me but know it; If you serve faithfully, I dare assure you You'l finde a loving Mistris.

ARCITE.

If I doe not, Let me finde that my Father ever hated, Disgrace and blowes.

THESEUS.

Go, leade the way; you have won it: It shall be so; you shall receave all dues Fit for the honour you have won; Twer wrong else. Sister, beshrew my heart, you have a Servant, That, if I were a woman, would be Master, But you are wise. [Florish.]

EMILIA.

I hope too wise for that, Sir. [Exeunt omnes.]



Scaena 6. (Before the prison.)

[Enter Iaylors Daughter alone.]

DAUGHTER.

Let all the Dukes, and all the divells rore, He is at liberty: I have venturd for him, And out I have brought him to a little wood A mile hence. I have sent him, where a Cedar, Higher than all the rest, spreads like a plane Fast by a Brooke, and there he shall keepe close, Till I provide him Fyles and foode, for yet His yron bracelets are not off. O Love, What a stout hearted child thou art! My Father Durst better have indur'd cold yron, than done it: I love him beyond love and beyond reason, Or wit, or safetie: I have made him know it. I care not, I am desperate; If the law Finde me, and then condemne me for't, some wenches, Some honest harted Maides, will sing my Dirge, And tell to memory my death was noble, Dying almost a Martyr: That way he takes, I purpose is my way too: Sure he cannot Be so unmanly, as to leave me here; If he doe, Maides will not so easily Trust men againe: And yet he has not thank'd me For what I have done: no not so much as kist me, And that (me thinkes) is not so well; nor scarcely Could I perswade him to become a Freeman, He made such scruples of the wrong he did To me, and to my Father. Yet I hope, When he considers more, this love of mine Will take more root within him: Let him doe What he will with me, so he use me kindly; For use me so he shall, or ile proclaime him, And to his face, no man. Ile presently Provide him necessaries, and packe my cloathes up, And where there is a patch of ground Ile venture, So hee be with me; By him, like a shadow, Ile ever dwell; within this houre the whoobub Will be all ore the prison: I am then Kissing the man they looke for: farewell, Father; Get many more such prisoners and such daughters, And shortly you may keepe your selfe. Now to him!



Actus Tertius.



Scaena 1. (A forest near Athens.)

[Cornets in sundry places. Noise and hallowing as people a Maying.]

[Enter Arcite alone.]

ARCITE.

The Duke has lost Hypolita; each tooke A severall land. This is a solemne Right They owe bloomd May, and the Athenians pay it To'th heart of Ceremony. O Queene Emilia, Fresher then May, sweeter Then hir gold Buttons on the bowes, or all Th'enamelld knackes o'th Meade or garden: yea, We challenge too the bancke of any Nymph That makes the streame seeme flowers; thou, o Iewell O'th wood, o'th world, hast likewise blest a place With thy sole presence: in thy rumination That I, poore man, might eftsoones come betweene And chop on some cold thought! thrice blessed chance, To drop on such a Mistris, expectation Most giltlesse on't! tell me, O Lady Fortune, (Next after Emely my Soveraigne) how far I may be prowd. She takes strong note of me, Hath made me neere her; and this beuteous Morne (The prim'st of all the yeare) presents me with A brace of horses: two such Steeds might well Be by a paire of Kings backt, in a Field That their crownes titles tride. Alas, alas, Poore Cosen Palamon, poore prisoner, thou So little dream'st upon my fortune, that Thou thinkst thy selfe the happier thing, to be So neare Emilia; me thou deem'st at Thebs, And therein wretched, although free. But if Thou knew'st my Mistris breathd on me, and that I ear'd her language, livde in her eye, O Coz, What passion would enclose thee!

[Enter Palamon as out of a Bush, with his Shackles: bends his fist at Arcite.]

PALAMON.

Traytor kinesman, Thou shouldst perceive my passion, if these signes Of prisonment were off me, and this hand But owner of a Sword: By all othes in one, I and the iustice of my love would make thee A confest Traytor. O thou most perfidious That ever gently lookd; the voydest of honour, That eu'r bore gentle Token; falsest Cosen That ever blood made kin, call'st thou hir thine? Ile prove it in my Shackles, with these hands, Void of appointment, that thou ly'st, and art A very theefe in love, a Chaffy Lord, Nor worth the name of villaine: had I a Sword And these house clogges away—

ARCITE.

Deere Cosin Palamon—

PALAMON.

Cosoner Arcite, give me language such As thou hast shewd me feate.

ARCITE.

Not finding in The circuit of my breast any grosse stuffe To forme me like your blazon, holds me to This gentlenesse of answer; tis your passion That thus mistakes, the which to you being enemy, Cannot to me be kind: honor, and honestie I cherish, and depend on, how so ev'r You skip them in me, and with them, faire Coz, Ile maintaine my proceedings; pray, be pleas'd To shew in generous termes your griefes, since that Your question's with your equall, who professes To cleare his owne way with the minde and Sword Of a true Gentleman.

PALAMON.

That thou durst, Arcite!

ARCITE.

My Coz, my Coz, you have beene well advertis'd How much I dare, y'ave seene me use my Sword Against th'advice of feare: sure, of another You would not heare me doubted, but your silence Should breake out, though i'th Sanctuary.

PALAMON.

Sir, I have seene you move in such a place, which well Might justifie your manhood; you were calld A good knight and a bold; But the whole weeke's not faire, If any day it rayne: Their valiant temper Men loose when they encline to trecherie, And then they fight like coupelld Beares, would fly Were they not tyde.

ARCITE.

Kinsman, you might as well Speake this and act it in your Glasse, as to His eare which now disdaines you.

PALAMON.

Come up to me, Quit me of these cold Gyves, give me a Sword, Though it be rustie, and the charity Of one meale lend me; Come before me then, A good Sword in thy hand, and doe but say That Emily is thine: I will forgive The trespasse thou hast done me, yea, my life, If then thou carry't, and brave soules in shades That have dyde manly, which will seeke of me Some newes from earth, they shall get none but this, That thou art brave and noble.

ARCITE.

Be content: Againe betake you to your hawthorne house; With counsaile of the night, I will be here With wholesome viands; these impediments Will I file off; you shall have garments and Perfumes to kill the smell o'th prison; after, When you shall stretch your selfe and say but, 'Arcite, I am in plight,' there shall be at your choyce Both Sword and Armour.

PALAMON.

Oh you heavens, dares any So noble beare a guilty busines! none But onely Arcite, therefore none but Arcite In this kinde is so bold.

ARCITE.

Sweete Palamon.

PALAMON.

I doe embrace you and your offer,—for Your offer doo't I onely, Sir; your person, Without hipocrisy I may not wish [Winde hornes of Cornets.] More then my Swords edge ont.

ARCITE.

You heare the Hornes; Enter your Musite least this match between's Be crost, er met: give me your hand; farewell. Ile bring you every needfull thing: I pray you, Take comfort and be strong.

PALAMON.

Pray hold your promise; And doe the deede with a bent brow: most certaine You love me not, be rough with me, and powre This oile out of your language; by this ayre, I could for each word give a Cuffe, my stomach Not reconcild by reason.

ARCITE.

Plainely spoken, Yet pardon me hard language: when I spur [Winde hornes.] My horse, I chide him not; content and anger In me have but one face. Harke, Sir, they call The scatterd to the Banket; you must guesse I have an office there.

PALAMON.

Sir, your attendance Cannot please heaven, and I know your office Vnjustly is atcheev'd.

ARCITE.

If a good title, I am perswaded this question sicke between's By bleeding must be cur'd. I am a Suitour, That to your Sword you will bequeath this plea And talke of it no more.

PALAMON.

But this one word: You are going now to gaze upon my Mistris, For note you, mine she is—

ARCITE.

Nay, then.

PALAMON.

Nay, pray you, You talke of feeding me to breed me strength: You are going now to looke upon a Sun That strengthens what it lookes on; there You have a vantage ore me, but enjoy't till I may enforce my remedy. Farewell. [Exeunt.]



Scaena 2. (Another Part of the forest.)

[Enter Iaylors daughter alone.]

DAUGHTER.

He has mistooke the Brake I meant, is gone After his fancy. Tis now welnigh morning; No matter, would it were perpetuall night, And darkenes Lord o'th world. Harke, tis a woolfe: In me hath greife slaine feare, and but for one thing I care for nothing, and that's Palamon. I wreake not if the wolves would jaw me, so He had this File: what if I hallowd for him? I cannot hallow: if I whoop'd, what then? If he not answeard, I should call a wolfe, And doe him but that service. I have heard Strange howles this live-long night, why may't not be They have made prey of him? he has no weapons, He cannot run, the Iengling of his Gives Might call fell things to listen, who have in them A sence to know a man unarmd, and can Smell where resistance is. Ile set it downe He's torne to peeces; they howld many together And then they fed on him: So much for that, Be bold to ring the Bell; how stand I then? All's char'd when he is gone. No, no, I lye, My Father's to be hang'd for his escape; My selfe to beg, if I prizd life so much As to deny my act, but that I would not, Should I try death by dussons.—I am mop't, Food tooke I none these two daies, Sipt some water. I have not closd mine eyes Save when my lids scowrd off their brine; alas, Dissolue my life, Let not my sence unsettle, Least I should drowne, or stab or hang my selfe. O state of Nature, faile together in me, Since thy best props are warpt! So, which way now? The best way is the next way to a grave: Each errant step beside is torment. Loe, The Moone is down, the Cryckets chirpe, the Schreichowle Calls in the dawne; all offices are done Save what I faile in: But the point is this, An end, and that is all. [Exit.]



Scaena 3. (Same as Scene I.)

[Enter Arcite, with Meate, Wine, and Files.]

ARCITE.

I should be neere the place: hoa, Cosen Palamon. [Enter Palamon.]

PALAMON.

Arcite?

ARCITE.

The same: I have brought you foode and files. Come forth and feare not, here's no Theseus.

PALAMON.

Nor none so honest, Arcite.

ARCITE.

That's no matter, Wee'l argue that hereafter: Come, take courage; You shall not dye thus beastly: here, Sir, drinke; I know you are faint: then ile talke further with you.

PALAMON.

Arcite, thou mightst now poyson me.

ARCITE.

I might, But I must feare you first: Sit downe, and, good, now No more of these vaine parlies; let us not, Having our ancient reputation with us, Make talke for Fooles and Cowards. To your health, &c.

PALAMON.

Doe.

ARCITE.

Pray, sit downe then; and let me entreate you, By all the honesty and honour in you, No mention of this woman: t'will disturbe us; We shall have time enough.

PALAMON.

Well, Sir, Ile pledge you.

ARCITE.

Drinke a good hearty draught; it breeds good blood, man. Doe not you feele it thaw you?

PALAMON.

Stay, Ile tell you after a draught or two more.

ARCITE.

Spare it not, the Duke has more, Cuz: Eate now.

PALAMON.

Yes.

ARCITE.

I am glad you have so good a stomach.

PALAMON.

I am gladder I have so good meate too't.

ARCITE.

Is't not mad lodging here in the wild woods, Cosen?

PALAMON.

Yes, for them that have wilde Consciences.

ARCITE.

How tasts your vittails? your hunger needs no sawce, I see.

PALAMON.

Not much; But if it did, yours is too tart, sweete Cosen: what is this?

ARCITE.

Venison.

PALAMON.

Tis a lusty meate: Giue me more wine; here, Arcite, to the wenches We have known in our daies. The Lord Stewards daughter, Doe you remember her?

ARCITE.

After you, Cuz.

PALAMON.

She lov'd a black-haird man.

ARCITE.

She did so; well, Sir.

PALAMON.

And I have heard some call him Arcite, and—

ARCITE.

Out with't, faith.

PALAMON.

She met him in an Arbour: What did she there, Cuz? play o'th virginals?

ARCITE.

Something she did, Sir.

PALAMON.

Made her groane a moneth for't, or 2. or 3. or 10.

ARCITE.

The Marshals Sister Had her share too, as I remember, Cosen, Else there be tales abroade; you'l pledge her?

PALAMON.

Yes.

ARCITE.

A pretty broune wench t'is. There was a time When yong men went a hunting, and a wood, And a broade Beech: and thereby hangs a tale:—heigh ho!

PALAMON.

For Emily, upon my life! Foole, Away with this straind mirth; I say againe, That sigh was breathd for Emily; base Cosen, Dar'st thou breake first?

ARCITE.

You are wide.

PALAMON.

By heaven and earth, ther's nothing in thee honest.

ARCITE.

Then Ile leave you: you are a Beast now.

PALAMON.

As thou makst me, Traytour.

ARCITE.

Ther's all things needfull, files and shirts, and perfumes: Ile come againe some two howres hence, and bring That that shall quiet all,

PALAMON.

A Sword and Armour?

ARCITE.

Feare me not; you are now too fowle; farewell. Get off your Trinkets; you shall want nought.

PALAMON.

Sir, ha—

ARCITE.

Ile heare no more. [Exit.]

PALAMON.

If he keepe touch, he dies for't. [Exit.]



Scaena 4. (Another part of the forest.)

[Enter Iaylors daughter.]

DAUGHTER.

I am very cold, and all the Stars are out too, The little Stars, and all, that looke like aglets: The Sun has seene my Folly. Palamon! Alas no; hees in heaven. Where am I now? Yonder's the sea, and ther's a Ship; how't tumbles! And ther's a Rocke lies watching under water; Now, now, it beates upon it; now, now, now, Ther's a leak sprung, a sound one, how they cry! Spoon her before the winde, you'l loose all els: Vp with a course or two, and take about, Boyes. Good night, good night, y'ar gone.—I am very hungry. Would I could finde a fine Frog; he would tell me Newes from all parts o'th world, then would I make A Carecke of a Cockle shell, and sayle By east and North East to the King of Pigmes, For he tels fortunes rarely. Now my Father, Twenty to one, is trust up in a trice To morrow morning; Ile say never a word.

[Sing.]

For ile cut my greene coat a foote above my knee, And ile clip my yellow lockes an inch below mine eie. hey, nonny, nonny, nonny, He's buy me a white Cut, forth for to ride And ile goe seeke him, throw the world that is so wide hey nonny, nonny, nonny.

O for a pricke now like a Nightingale, To put my breast against. I shall sleepe like a Top else. [Exit.]



Scaena 5. (Another part of the forest.)

[Enter a Schoole master, 4. Countrymen, and Bavian. 2. or 3. wenches, with a Taborer.]

SCHOOLMASTER.

Fy, fy, what tediosity, & disensanity is here among ye? have my Rudiments bin labourd so long with ye? milkd unto ye, and by a figure even the very plumbroth & marrow of my understanding laid upon ye? and do you still cry: where, and how, & wherfore? you most course freeze capacities, ye jane Iudgements, have I saide: thus let be, and there let be, and then let be, and no man understand mee? Proh deum, medius fidius, ye are all dunces! For why, here stand I, Here the Duke comes, there are you close in the Thicket; the Duke appeares, I meete him and unto him I utter learned things and many figures; he heares, and nods, and hums, and then cries: rare, and I goe forward; at length I fling my Cap up; marke there; then do you, as once did Meleager and the Bore, break comly out before him: like true lovers, cast your selves in a Body decently, and sweetly, by a figure trace and turne, Boyes.

1. COUNTREYMAN.

And sweetly we will doe it Master Gerrold.

2. COUNTREYMAN.

Draw up the Company. Where's the Taborour?

3. COUNTREYMAN.

Why, Timothy!

TABORER.

Here, my mad boyes, have at ye.

SCHOOLMASTER.

But I say, where's their women?

4. COUNTREYMAN.

Here's Friz and Maudline.

2. COUNTREYMAN.

And little Luce with the white legs, and bouncing Barbery.

1. COUNTREYMAN.

And freckeled Nel, that never faild her Master.

SCHOOLMASTER.

Wher be your Ribands, maids? swym with your Bodies And carry it sweetly, and deliverly And now and then a fauour, and a friske.

NEL.

Let us alone, Sir.

SCHOOLMASTER.

Wher's the rest o'th Musicke?

3. COUNTREYMAN.

Dispersd as you commanded.

SCHOOLMASTER.

Couple, then, And see what's wanting; wher's the Bavian? My friend, carry your taile without offence Or scandall to the Ladies; and be sure You tumble with audacity and manhood; And when you barke, doe it with judgement.

BAVIAN.

Yes, Sir.

SCHOOLMASTER.

Quo usque tandem? Here is a woman wanting.

4. COUNTREYMAN.

We may goe whistle: all the fat's i'th fire.

SCHOOLMASTER.

We have, As learned Authours utter, washd a Tile, We have beene FATUUS, and laboured vainely.

2. COUNTREYMAN.

This is that scornefull peece, that scurvy hilding, That gave her promise faithfully, she would be here, Cicely the Sempsters daughter: The next gloves that I give her shall be dog skin; Nay and she faile me once—you can tell, Arcas, She swore by wine and bread, she would not breake.

SCHOOLMASTER.

An Eele and woman, A learned Poet sayes, unles by'th taile And with thy teeth thou hold, will either faile. In manners this was false position

1. COUNTREYMAN.

A fire ill take her; do's she flinch now?

3. COUNTREYMAN.

What Shall we determine, Sir?

SCHOOLMASTER.

Nothing. Our busines is become a nullity; Yea, and a woefull, and a pittious nullity.

4. COUNTREYMAN.

Now when the credite of our Towne lay on it, Now to be frampall, now to pisse o'th nettle! Goe thy waies; ile remember thee, ile fit thee.

[Enter Iaylors daughter.]

DAUGHTER.

[Sings.]

The George alow came from the South, From the coast of Barbary a. And there he met with brave gallants of war By one, by two, by three, a.

Well haild, well haild, you jolly gallants, And whither now are you bound a? O let me have your company [Chaire and stooles out.] Till (I) come to the sound a.

There was three fooles, fell out about an howlet: The one sed it was an owle, The other he sed nay, The third he sed it was a hawke, And her bels wer cut away.

3. COUNTREYMAN.

Ther's a dainty mad woman M(aiste)r Comes i'th Nick, as mad as a march hare: If wee can get her daunce, wee are made againe: I warrant her, shee'l doe the rarest gambols.

1. COUNTREYMAN.

A mad woman? we are made, Boyes.

SCHOOLMASTER.

And are you mad, good woman?

DAUGHTER.

I would be sorry else; Give me your hand.

SCHOOLMASTER.

Why?

DAUGHTER.

I can tell your fortune. You are a foole: tell ten. I have pozd him: Buz! Friend you must eate no whitebread; if you doe, Your teeth will bleede extreamely. Shall we dance, ho? I know you, y'ar a Tinker: Sirha Tinker, Stop no more holes, but what you should.

SCHOOLMASTER.

Dij boni. A Tinker, Damzell?

DAUGHTER.

Or a Conjurer: Raise me a devill now, and let him play Quipassa o'th bels and bones.

SCHOOLMASTER.

Goe, take her, And fluently perswade her to a peace: Et opus exegi, quod nec Iouis ira, nec ignis. Strike up, and leade her in.

2. COUNTREYMAN.

Come, Lasse, lets trip it.

DAUGHTER.

Ile leade. [Winde Hornes.]

3. COUNTREYMAN.

Doe, doe.

SCHOOLMASTER.

Perswasively, and cunningly: away, boyes, [Ex. all but Schoolemaster.] I heare the hornes: give me some meditation, And marke your Cue.—Pallas inspire me.

[Enter Thes. Pir. Hip. Emil. Arcite, and traine.]

THESEUS.

This way the Stag tooke.

SCHOOLMASTER.

Stay, and edifie.

THESEUS.

What have we here?

PERITHOUS.

Some Countrey sport, upon my life, Sir.

THESEUS.

Well, Sir, goe forward, we will edifie. Ladies, sit downe, wee'l stay it.

SCHOOLMASTER.

Thou, doughtie Duke, all haile: all haile, sweet Ladies.

THESEUS.

This is a cold beginning.

SCHOOLMASTER.

If you but favour, our Country pastime made is. We are a few of those collected here, That ruder Tongues distinguish villager; And to say veritie, and not to fable, We are a merry rout, or else a rable, Or company, or, by a figure, Choris, That fore thy dignitie will dance a Morris. And I, that am the rectifier of all, By title Pedagogus, that let fall The Birch upon the breeches of the small ones, And humble with a Ferula the tall ones, Doe here present this Machine, or this frame: And daintie Duke, whose doughtie dismall fame From Dis to Dedalus, from post to pillar, Is blowne abroad, helpe me thy poore well willer, And with thy twinckling eyes looke right and straight Vpon this mighty MORR—of mickle waight; IS now comes in, which being glewd together, Makes MORRIS, and the cause that we came hether. The body of our sport, of no small study, I first appeare, though rude, and raw, and muddy, To speake before thy noble grace this tenner: At whose great feete I offer up my penner. The next the Lord of May and Lady bright, The Chambermaid and Servingman by night That seeke out silent hanging: Then mine Host And his fat Spowse, that welcomes to their cost The gauled Traveller, and with a beckning Informes the Tapster to inflame the reckning: Then the beast eating Clowne, and next the foole, The Bavian, with long tayle and eke long toole, Cum multis alijs that make a dance: Say 'I,' and all shall presently advance.

THESEUS.

I, I, by any meanes, deere Domine.

PERITHOUS.

Produce.

(SCHOOLMASTER.)

Intrate, filij; Come forth, and foot it.—

[Musicke, Dance. Knocke for Schoole.]

[Enter the Dance.]

Ladies, if we have beene merry, And have pleasd yee with a derry, And a derry, and a downe, Say the Schoolemaster's no Clowne: Duke, if we have pleasd thee too, And have done as good Boyes should doe, Give us but a tree or twaine For a Maypole, and againe, Ere another yeare run out, Wee'l make thee laugh and all this rout.

THESEUS.

Take 20., Domine; how does my sweet heart?

HIPPOLITA.

Never so pleasd, Sir.

EMILIA.

Twas an excellent dance, and for a preface I never heard a better.

THESEUS.

Schoolemaster, I thanke you.—One see'em all rewarded.

PERITHOUS.

And heer's something to paint your Pole withall.

THESEUS.

Now to our sports againe.

SCHOOLMASTER.

May the Stag thou huntst stand long, And thy dogs be swift and strong: May they kill him without lets, And the Ladies eate his dowsets! Come, we are all made. [Winde Hornes.] Dij Deoeq(ue) omnes, ye have danc'd rarely, wenches. [Exeunt.]



Scaena 6. (Same as Scene III.)

[Enter Palamon from the Bush.]

PALAMON.

About this houre my Cosen gave his faith To visit me againe, and with him bring Two Swords, and two good Armors; if he faile, He's neither man nor Souldier. When he left me, I did not thinke a weeke could have restord My lost strength to me, I was growne so low, And Crest-falne with my wants: I thanke thee, Arcite, Thou art yet a faire Foe; and I feele my selfe With this refreshing, able once againe To out dure danger: To delay it longer Would make the world think, when it comes to hearing, That I lay fatting like a Swine to fight, And not a Souldier: Therefore, this blest morning Shall be the last; and that Sword he refuses, If it but hold, I kill him with; tis Iustice: So love, and Fortune for me!—O, good morrow.

[Enter Arcite with Armors and Swords.]

ARCITE.

Good morrow, noble kinesman.

PALAMON.

I have put you to too much paines, Sir.

ARCITE.

That too much, faire Cosen, Is but a debt to honour, and my duty.

PALAMON.

Would you were so in all, Sir; I could wish ye As kinde a kinsman, as you force me finde A beneficiall foe, that my embraces Might thanke ye, not my blowes.

ARCITE.

I shall thinke either, well done, A noble recompence.

PALAMON.

Then I shall quit you.

ARCITE.

Defy me in these faire termes, and you show More then a Mistris to me, no more anger As you love any thing that's honourable: We were not bred to talke, man; when we are arm'd And both upon our guards, then let our fury, Like meeting of two tides, fly strongly from us, And then to whom the birthright of this Beauty Truely pertaines (without obbraidings, scornes, Dispisings of our persons, and such powtings, Fitter for Girles and Schooleboyes) will be seene And quickly, yours, or mine: wilt please you arme, Sir, Or if you feele your selfe not fitting yet And furnishd with your old strength, ile stay, Cosen, And ev'ry day discourse you into health, As I am spard: your person I am friends with, And I could wish I had not saide I lov'd her, Though I had dide; But loving such a Lady And justifying my Love, I must not fly from't.

PALAMON.

Arcite, thou art so brave an enemy, That no man but thy Cosen's fit to kill thee: I am well and lusty, choose your Armes.

ARCITE.

Choose you, Sir.

PALAMON.

Wilt thou exceede in all, or do'st thou doe it To make me spare thee?

ARCITE.

If you thinke so, Cosen, You are deceived, for as I am a Soldier, I will not spare you.

PALAMON.

That's well said.

ARCITE.

You'l finde it.

PALAMON.

Then, as I am an honest man and love With all the justice of affection, Ile pay thee soundly. This ile take.

ARCITE.

That's mine, then; Ile arme you first.

PALAMON.

Do: pray thee, tell me, Cosen, Where gotst thou this good Armour?

ARCITE.

Tis the Dukes, And to say true, I stole it; doe I pinch you?

PALAMON.

Noe.

ARCITE.

Is't not too heavie?

PALAMON.

I have worne a lighter, But I shall make it serve.

ARCITE.

Ile buckl't close.

PALAMON.

By any meanes.

ARCITE.

You care not for a Grand guard?

PALAMON.

No, no; wee'l use no horses: I perceave You would faine be at that Fight.

ARCITE.

I am indifferent.

PALAMON.

Faith, so am I: good Cosen, thrust the buckle Through far enough.

ARCITE.

I warrant you.

PALAMON.

My Caske now.

ARCITE.

Will you fight bare-armd?

PALAMON.

We shall be the nimbler.

ARCITE.

But use your Gauntlets though; those are o'th least, Prethee take mine, good Cosen.

PALAMON.

Thanke you, Arcite. How doe I looke? am I falne much away?

ARCITE.

Faith, very little; love has usd you kindly.

PALAMON.

Ile warrant thee, Ile strike home.

ARCITE.

Doe, and spare not; Ile give you cause, sweet Cosen.

PALAMON.

Now to you, Sir: Me thinkes this Armor's very like that, Arcite, Thou wor'st the day the 3. Kings fell, but lighter.

ARCITE.

That was a very good one; and that day, I well remember, you outdid me, Cosen. I never saw such valour: when you chargd Vpon the left wing of the Enemie, I spurd hard to come up, and under me I had a right good horse.

PALAMON.

You had indeede; a bright Bay, I remember.

ARCITE.

Yes, but all Was vainely labour'd in me; you outwent me, Nor could my wishes reach you; yet a little I did by imitation.

PALAMON.

More by vertue; You are modest, Cosen.

ARCITE.

When I saw you charge first, Me thought I heard a dreadfull clap of Thunder Breake from the Troope.

PALAMON.

But still before that flew The lightning of your valour. Stay a little, Is not this peece too streight?

ARCITE.

No, no, tis well.

PALAMON.

I would have nothing hurt thee but my Sword, A bruise would be dishonour.

ARCITE.

Now I am perfect.

PALAMON.

Stand off, then.

ARCITE.

Take my Sword, I hold it better.

PALAMON.

I thanke ye: No, keepe it; your life lyes on it. Here's one; if it but hold, I aske no more For all my hopes: My Cause and honour guard me! [They bow severall wayes: then advance and stand.]

ARCITE.

And me my love! Is there ought else to say?

PALAMON.

This onely, and no more: Thou art mine Aunts Son, And that blood we desire to shed is mutuall; In me, thine, and in thee, mine. My Sword Is in my hand, and if thou killst me, The gods and I forgive thee; If there be A place prepar'd for those that sleepe in honour, I wish his wearie soule that falls may win it: Fight bravely, Cosen; give me thy noble hand.

ARCITE.

Here, Palamon: This hand shall never more Come neare thee with such friendship.

PALAMON.

I commend thee.

ARCITE.

If I fall, curse me, and say I was a coward, For none but such dare die in these just Tryalls. Once more farewell, my Cosen.

PALAMON.

Farewell, Arcite. [Fight.]

[Hornes within: they stand.]

ARCITE.

Loe, Cosen, loe, our Folly has undon us.

PALAMON.

Why?

ARCITE.

This is the Duke, a hunting as I told you. If we be found, we are wretched. O retire For honours sake, and safety presently Into your Bush agen; Sir, we shall finde Too many howres to dye in: gentle Cosen, If you be seene you perish instantly For breaking prison, and I, if you reveale me, For my contempt. Then all the world will scorne us, And say we had a noble difference, But base disposers of it.

PALAMON.

No, no, Cosen, I will no more be hidden, nor put off This great adventure to a second Tryall: I know your cunning, and I know your cause; He that faints now, shame take him: put thy selfe Vpon thy present guard—

ARCITE.

You are not mad?

PALAMON.

Or I will make th'advantage of this howre Mine owne, and what to come shall threaten me, I feare lesse then my fortune: know, weake Cosen, I love Emilia, and in that ile bury Thee, and all crosses else.

ARCITE.

Then, come what can come, Thou shalt know, Palamon, I dare as well Die, as discourse, or sleepe: Onely this feares me, The law will have the honour of our ends. Have at thy life.

PALAMON.

Looke to thine owne well, Arcite. [Fight againe. Hornes.]

[Enter Theseus, Hipolita, Emilia, Perithous and traine.]

THESEUS.

What ignorant and mad malicious Traitors, Are you, That gainst the tenor of my Lawes Are making Battaile, thus like Knights appointed, Without my leave, and Officers of Armes? By Castor, both shall dye.

PALAMON.

Hold thy word, Theseus. We are certainly both Traitors, both despisers Of thee and of thy goodnesse: I am Palamon, That cannot love thee, he that broke thy Prison; Thinke well what that deserves: and this is Arcite, A bolder Traytor never trod thy ground, A Falser neu'r seem'd friend: This is the man Was begd and banish'd; this is he contemnes thee And what thou dar'st doe, and in this disguise Against thy owne Edict followes thy Sister, That fortunate bright Star, the faire Emilia, Whose servant, (if there be a right in seeing, And first bequeathing of the soule to) justly I am, and, which is more, dares thinke her his. This treacherie, like a most trusty Lover, I call'd him now to answer; if thou bee'st, As thou art spoken, great and vertuous, The true descider of all injuries, Say, 'Fight againe,' and thou shalt see me, Theseus, Doe such a Iustice, thou thy selfe wilt envie. Then take my life; Ile wooe thee too't.

PERITHOUS.

O heaven, What more then man is this!

THESEUS.

I have sworne.

ARCITE.

We seeke not Thy breath of mercy, Theseus. Tis to me A thing as soone to dye, as thee to say it, And no more mov'd: where this man calls me Traitor, Let me say thus much: if in love be Treason, In service of so excellent a Beutie, As I love most, and in that faith will perish, As I have brought my life here to confirme it, As I have serv'd her truest, worthiest, As I dare kill this Cosen, that denies it, So let me be most Traitor, and ye please me. For scorning thy Edict, Duke, aske that Lady Why she is faire, and why her eyes command me Stay here to love her; and if she say 'Traytor,' I am a villaine fit to lye unburied.

PALAMON.

Thou shalt have pitty of us both, o Theseus, If unto neither thou shew mercy; stop (As thou art just) thy noble eare against us. As thou art valiant, for thy Cosens soule Whose 12. strong labours crowne his memory, Lets die together, at one instant, Duke, Onely a little let him fall before me, That I may tell my Soule he shall not have her.

THESEUS.

I grant your wish, for, to say true, your Cosen Has ten times more offended; for I gave him More mercy then you found, Sir, your offenses Being no more then his. None here speake for 'em, For, ere the Sun set, both shall sleepe for ever.

HIPPOLITA.

Alas the pitty! now or never, Sister, Speake, not to be denide; That face of yours Will beare the curses else of after ages For these lost Cosens.

EMILIA.

In my face, deare Sister, I finde no anger to 'em, nor no ruyn; The misadventure of their owne eyes kill 'em; Yet that I will be woman, and have pitty, My knees shall grow to'th ground but Ile get mercie. Helpe me, deare Sister; in a deede so vertuous The powers of all women will be with us. Most royall Brother—

HIPPOLITA.

Sir, by our tye of Marriage—

EMILIA.

By your owne spotlesse honour—

HIPPOLITA.

By that faith, That faire hand, and that honest heart you gave me.

EMILIA.

By that you would have pitty in another, By your owne vertues infinite.

HIPPOLITA.

By valour, By all the chaste nights I have ever pleasd you.

THESEUS.

These are strange Conjurings.

PERITHOUS.

Nay, then, Ile in too: By all our friendship, Sir, by all our dangers, By all you love most: warres and this sweet Lady.

EMILIA.

By that you would have trembled to deny, A blushing Maide.

HIPPOLITA.

By your owne eyes: By strength, In which you swore I went beyond all women, Almost all men, and yet I yeelded, Theseus.

PERITHOUS.

To crowne all this: By your most noble soule, Which cannot want due mercie, I beg first.

HIPPOLITA.

Next, heare my prayers.

EMILIA.

Last, let me intreate, Sir.

PERITHOUS.

For mercy.

HIPPOLITA.

Mercy.

EMILIA.

Mercy on these Princes.

THESEUS.

Ye make my faith reele: Say I felt Compassion to'em both, how would you place it?

EMILIA.

Vpon their lives: But with their banishments.

THESEUS.

You are a right woman, Sister; you have pitty, But want the vnderstanding where to use it. If you desire their lives, invent a way Safer then banishment: Can these two live And have the agony of love about 'em, And not kill one another? Every day They'ld fight about you; howrely bring your honour In publique question with their Swords. Be wise, then, And here forget 'em; it concernes your credit And my oth equally: I have said they die; Better they fall by'th law, then one another. Bow not my honor.

EMILIA.

O my noble Brother, That oth was rashly made, and in your anger, Your reason will not hold it; if such vowes Stand for expresse will, all the world must perish. Beside, I have another oth gainst yours, Of more authority, I am sure more love, Not made in passion neither, but good heede.

THESEUS.

What is it, Sister?

PERITHOUS.

Vrge it home, brave Lady.

EMILIA.

That you would nev'r deny me any thing Fit for my modest suit, and your free granting: I tye you to your word now; if ye fall in't, Thinke how you maime your honour, (For now I am set a begging, Sir, I am deafe To all but your compassion.) How, their lives Might breed the ruine of my name, Opinion! Shall any thing that loves me perish for me? That were a cruell wisedome; doe men proyne The straight yong Bowes that blush with thousand Blossoms, Because they may be rotten? O Duke Theseus, The goodly Mothers that have groand for these, And all the longing Maides that ever lov'd, If your vow stand, shall curse me and my Beauty, And in their funerall songs for these two Cosens Despise my crueltie, and cry woe worth me, Till I am nothing but the scorne of women; For heavens sake save their lives, and banish 'em.

THESEUS.

On what conditions?

EMILIA.

Sweare'em never more To make me their Contention, or to know me, To tread upon thy Dukedome; and to be, Where ever they shall travel, ever strangers To one another.

PALAMON.

Ile be cut a peeces Before I take this oth: forget I love her? O all ye gods dispise me, then! Thy Banishment I not mislike, so we may fairely carry Our Swords and cause along: else, never trifle, But take our lives, Duke: I must love and will, And for that love must and dare kill this Cosen On any peece the earth has.

THESEUS.

Will you, Arcite, Take these conditions?

PALAMON.

He's a villaine, then.

PERITHOUS.

These are men.

ARCITE.

No, never, Duke: Tis worse to me than begging To take my life so basely; though I thinke I never shall enjoy her, yet ile preserve The honour of affection, and dye for her, Make death a Devill.

THESEUS.

What may be done? for now I feele compassion.

PERITHOUS.

Let it not fall agen, Sir.

THESEUS.

Say, Emilia, If one of them were dead, as one must, are you Content to take th'other to your husband? They cannot both enjoy you; They are Princes As goodly as your owne eyes, and as noble As ever fame yet spoke of; looke upon 'em, And if you can love, end this difference. I give consent; are you content too, Princes?

BOTH.

With all our soules.

THESEUS.

He that she refuses Must dye, then.

BOTH.

Any death thou canst invent, Duke.

PALAMON.

If I fall from that mouth, I fall with favour, And Lovers yet unborne shall blesse my ashes.

ARCITE.

If she refuse me, yet my grave will wed me, And Souldiers sing my Epitaph.

THESEUS.

Make choice, then.

EMILIA.

I cannot, Sir, they are both too excellent: For me, a hayre shall never fall of these men.

HIPPOLITA.

What will become of 'em?

THESEUS.

Thus I ordaine it; And by mine honor, once againe, it stands, Or both shall dye:—You shall both to your Countrey, And each within this moneth, accompanied With three faire Knights, appeare againe in this place, In which Ile plant a Pyramid; and whether, Before us that are here, can force his Cosen By fayre and knightly strength to touch the Pillar, He shall enjoy her: the other loose his head, And all his friends; Nor shall he grudge to fall, Nor thinke he dies with interest in this Lady: Will this content yee?

PALAMON.

Yes: here, Cosen Arcite, I am friends againe, till that howre.

ARCITE.

I embrace ye.

THESEUS.

Are you content, Sister?

EMILIA.

Yes, I must, Sir, Els both miscarry.

THESEUS.

Come, shake hands againe, then; And take heede, as you are Gentlemen, this Quarrell Sleepe till the howre prefixt; and hold your course.

PALAMON.

We dare not faile thee, Theseus.

THESEUS.

Come, Ile give ye Now usage like to Princes, and to Friends: When ye returne, who wins, Ile settle heere; Who looses, yet Ile weepe upon his Beere. [Exeunt.]



Actus Quartus.



Scaena 1. (Athens. A room in the prison.)

[Enter Iailor and his friend.]

IAILOR.

Heare you no more? was nothing saide of me Concerning the escape of Palamon? Good Sir, remember.

1. FRIEND.

Nothing that I heard, For I came home before the busines Was fully ended: Yet I might perceive, Ere I departed, a great likelihood Of both their pardons: For Hipolita, And faire-eyd Emilie, upon their knees Begd with such hansom pitty, that the Duke Me thought stood staggering, whether he should follow His rash oth, or the sweet compassion Of those two Ladies; and to second them, That truely noble Prince Perithous, Halfe his owne heart, set in too, that I hope All shall be well: Neither heard I one question Of your name or his scape.

[Enter 2. Friend.]

IAILOR.

Pray heaven it hold so.

2. FRIEND.

Be of good comfort, man; I bring you newes, Good newes.

IAILOR.

They are welcome,

2. FRIEND.

Palamon has cleerd you, And got your pardon, and discoverd how And by whose meanes he escapt, which was your Daughters, Whose pardon is procurd too; and the Prisoner, Not to be held ungratefull to her goodnes, Has given a summe of money to her Marriage, A large one, ile assure you.

IAILOR.

Ye are a good man And ever bring good newes.

1. FRIEND.

How was it ended?

2. FRIEND.

Why, as it should be; they that nev'r begd But they prevaild, had their suites fairely granted, The prisoners have their lives.

1. FRIEND.

I knew t'would be so.

2. FRIEND.

But there be new conditions, which you'l heare of At better time.

IAILOR.

I hope they are good.

2. FRIEND.

They are honourable, How good they'l prove, I know not.

[Enter Wooer.]

1. FRIEND.

T'will be knowne.

WOOER.

Alas, Sir, wher's your Daughter?

IAILOR.

Why doe you aske?

WOOER.

O, Sir, when did you see her?

2. FRIEND.

How he lookes?

IAILOR.

This morning.

WOOER.

Was she well? was she in health, Sir? When did she sleepe?

1. FRIEND.

These are strange Questions.

IAILOR.

I doe not thinke she was very well, for now You make me minde her, but this very day I ask'd her questions, and she answered me So farre from what she was, so childishly, So sillily, as if she were a foole, An Inocent, and I was very angry. But what of her, Sir?

WOOER.

Nothing but my pitty; But you must know it, and as good by me As by an other that lesse loves her—

IAILOR.

Well, Sir.

1. FRIEND.

Not right?

2. FRIEND.

Not well?

WOOER.

No, Sir, not well. Tis too true, she is mad.

1. FRIEND.

It cannot be.

WOOER.

Beleeve, you'l finde it so.

IAILOR.

I halfe suspected What you (have) told me: the gods comfort her: Either this was her love to Palamon, Or feare of my miscarrying on his scape, Or both.

WOOER.

Tis likely.

IAILOR.

But why all this haste, Sir?

WOOER.

Ile tell you quickly. As I late was angling In the great Lake that lies behind the Pallace, From the far shore, thicke set with reedes and Sedges, As patiently I was attending sport, I heard a voyce, a shrill one, and attentive I gave my eare, when I might well perceive T'was one that sung, and by the smallnesse of it A boy or woman. I then left my angle To his owne skill, came neere, but yet perceivd not Who made the sound, the rushes and the Reeds Had so encompast it: I laide me downe And listned to the words she sung, for then, Through a small glade cut by the Fisher men, I saw it was your Daughter.

IAILOR.

Pray, goe on, Sir?

WOOER.

She sung much, but no sence; onely I heard her Repeat this often: 'Palamon is gone, Is gone to'th wood to gather Mulberies; Ile finde him out to morrow.'

1. FRIEND.

Pretty soule.

WOOER.

'His shackles will betray him, hee'l be taken, And what shall I doe then? Ile bring a beavy, A hundred blacke eyd Maides, that love as I doe, With Chaplets on their heads of Daffadillies, With cherry-lips, and cheekes of Damaske Roses, And all wee'l daunce an Antique fore the Duke, And beg his pardon.' Then she talk'd of you, Sir; That you must loose your head to morrow morning, And she must gather flowers to bury you, And see the house made handsome: then she sung Nothing but 'Willow, willow, willow,' and betweene Ever was, 'Palamon, faire Palamon,' And 'Palamon was a tall yong man.' The place Was knee deepe where she sat; her careles Tresses A wreathe of bull-rush rounded; about her stucke Thousand fresh water flowers of severall cullors, That me thought she appeard like the faire Nimph That feedes the lake with waters, or as Iris Newly dropt downe from heaven; Rings she made Of rushes that grew by, and to 'em spoke The prettiest posies: 'Thus our true love's tide,' 'This you may loose, not me,' and many a one: And then she wept, and sung againe, and sigh'd, And with the same breath smil'd, and kist her hand.

2. FRIEND.

Alas, what pitty it is!

WOOER.

I made in to her. She saw me, and straight sought the flood; I sav'd her, And set her safe to land: when presently She slipt away, and to the Citty made, With such a cry and swiftnes, that, beleeve me, Shee left me farre behinde her; three or foure I saw from farre off crosse her, one of 'em I knew to be your brother; where she staid, And fell, scarce to be got away: I left them with her, [Enter Brother, Daughter, and others.] And hether came to tell you. Here they are.

DAUGHTER. [sings.]

May you never more enjoy the light, &c.

Is not this a fine Song?

BROTHER.

O, a very fine one.

DAUGHTER.

I can sing twenty more.

BROTHER.

I thinke you can.

DAUGHTER.

Yes, truely, can I; I can sing the Broome, And Bony Robin. Are not you a tailour?

BROTHER.

Yes.

DAUGHTER.

Wher's my wedding Gowne?

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