Two Gentlemen of Verona - The Works of William Shakespeare [Cambridge Edition] [9 vols.]
by William Shakespeare
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[Transcriber's Note:

This text of Two Gentlemen of Verona is from Volume I of the nine-volume 1863 Cambridge edition of Shakespeare. The Preface (e-text 23041) and the other plays from this volume are each available as separate e-texts.

General Notes are in their original location at the end of the play. Text-critical notes are grouped at the end of each Scene. All line numbers are from the original text; line breaks in dialogue—including prose passages—are unchanged. Brackets are also unchanged; to avoid ambiguity, footnotes and linenotes are given without added brackets. In the notes, numerals printed as subscripts are shown inline as F1, F2, Q1....

Texts cited in the Notes are listed at the end of the e-text.]




Edited by

WILLIAM GEORGE CLARK, M.A. Fellow and Tutor of Trinity College, and Public Orator in the University of Cambridge;

and JOHN GLOVER, M.A. Librarian Of Trinity College, Cambridge.


Cambridge and London: MACMILLAN AND CO. 1863.




DUKE OF MILAN[2], Father to Silvia. VALENTINE, } PROTEUS[3], } the two Gentlemen. ANTONIO[4], Father to Proteus. THURIO, a foolish rival to Valentine. EGLAMOUR, Agent for Silvia in her escape. HOST, where Julia lodges. OUTLAWS, with Valentine. SPEED, a clownish Servant to Valentine. LAUNCE, the like to Proteus. PANTHINO[5], Servant to Antonio.

JULIA, beloved of Proteus. SILVIA, beloved of Valentine. LUCETTA, waiting-woman to Julia.

Servants, Musicians[6].

SCENE, Verona; Milan; the frontiers of Mantua[7].


1: DRAMATIS PERSONAE.] THE NAMES OF ALL THE ACTORS F1, at the end of the play. 2: OF MILAN] added by Pope. 3: PROTEUS] Steevens. PROTHEUS Ff. See note (I). 4: ANTONIO] Capell. ANTHONIO Ff. 5: PANTHINO] Capell. PANTHION Ff. See note (I). 6: Servants, Musicians] Theobald. 7: SCENE ...] Pope and Hanmer.




SCENE I. Verona. An open place.


Val. Cease to persuade, my loving Proteus: Home-keeping youth have ever homely wits. Were't not affection chains thy tender days To the sweet glances of thy honour'd love, I rather would entreat thy company 5 To see the wonders of the world abroad, Than, living dully sluggardized at home, Wear out thy youth with shapeless idleness. But since thou lovest, love still, and thrive therein, Even as I would, when I to love begin. 10

Pro. Wilt thou be gone? Sweet Valentine, adieu! Think on thy Proteus, when thou haply seest Some rare note-worthy object in thy travel: Wish me partaker in thy happiness, When thou dost meet good hap; and in thy danger, 15 If ever danger do environ thee, Commend thy grievance to my holy prayers, For I will be thy beadsman, Valentine.

Val. And on a love-book pray for my success?

Pro. Upon some book I love I'll pray for thee. 20

Val. That's on some shallow story of deep love: How young Leander cross'd the Hellespont.

Pro. That's a deep story of a deeper love; For he was more than over shoes in love.

Val. 'Tis true; for you are over boots in love, 25 And yet you never swum the Hellespont.

Pro. Over the boots? nay, give me not the boots.

Val. No, I will not, for it boots thee not.

Pro. What?

Val. To be in love, where scorn is bought with groans; Coy looks with heart-sore sighs; one fading moment's mirth 30 With twenty watchful, weary, tedious nights: If haply won, perhaps a hapless gain; If lost, why then a grievous labour won; However, but a folly bought with wit, Or else a wit by folly vanquished. 35

Pro. So, by your circumstance, you call me fool.

Val. So, by your circumstance, I fear you'll prove.

Pro. 'Tis love you cavil at: I am not Love.

Val. Love is your master, for he masters you: And he that is so yoked by a fool, 40 Methinks, should not be chronicled for wise.

Pro. Yet writers say, as in the sweetest bud The eating canker dwells, so eating love Inhabits in the finest wits of all.

Val. And writers say, as the most forward bud 45 Is eaten by the canker ere it blow, Even so by love the young and tender wit Is turn'd to folly; blasting in the bud, Losing his verdure even in the prime, And all the fair effects of future hopes. 50 But wherefore waste I time to counsel thee, That art a votary to fond desire? Once more adieu! my father at the road Expects my coming, there to see me shipp'd.

Pro. And thither will I bring thee, Valentine. 55

Val. Sweet Proteus, no; now let us take our leave. To Milan let me hear from thee by letters Of thy success in love, and what news else Betideth here in absence of thy friend; And I likewise will visit thee with mine. 60

Pro. All happiness bechance to thee in Milan!

Val. As much to you at home! and so, farewell. [Exit.

Pro. He after honour hunts, I after love: He leaves his friends to dignify them more; I leave myself, my friends, and all, for love. 65 Thou, Julia, thou hast metamorphosed me, Made me neglect my studies, lose my time, War with good counsel, set the world at nought; Made wit with musing weak, heart sick with thought.

Enter SPEED.

Speed. Sir Proteus, save you! Saw you my master? 70

Pro. But now he parted hence, to embark for Milan.

Speed. Twenty to one, then, he is shipp'd already, And I have play'd the sheep in losing him.

Pro. Indeed, a sheep doth very often stray, An if the shepherd be awhile away. 75

Speed. You conclude that my master is a shepherd, then, and I a sheep?

Pro. I do.

Speed. Why then, my horns are his horns, whether I wake or sleep. 80

Pro. A silly answer, and fitting well a sheep.

Speed. This proves me still a sheep.

Pro. True; and thy master a shepherd.

Speed. Nay, that I can deny by a circumstance.

Pro. It shall go hard but I'll prove it by another. 85

Speed. The shepherd seeks the sheep, and not the sheep the shepherd; but I seek my master, and my master seeks not me: therefore I am no sheep.

Pro. The sheep for fodder follow the shepherd; the shepherd for food follows not the sheep: thou for wages 90 followest thy master; thy master for wages follows not thee: therefore thou art a sheep.

Speed. Such another proof will make me cry 'baa.'

Pro. But, dost thou hear? gavest thou my letter to Julia? 95

Speed. Ay, sir: I, a lost mutton, gave your letter to her, a laced mutton, and she, a laced mutton, gave me, a lost mutton, nothing for my labour.

Pro. Here's too small a pasture for such store of muttons.

Speed. If the ground be overcharged, you were best 100 stick her.

Pro. Nay: in that you are astray, 'twere best pound you.

Speed. Nay, sir, less than a pound shall serve me for carrying your letter.

Pro. You mistake; I mean the pound,—a pinfold. 105

Speed. From a pound to a pin? fold it over and over, 'Tis threefold too little for carrying a letter to your lover.

Pro. But what said she?

Speed. [First nodding] Ay.

Pro. Nod—Ay—why, that's noddy. 110

Speed. You mistook, sir; I say, she did nod: and you ask me if she did nod; and I say, 'Ay.'

Pro. And that set together is noddy.

Speed. Now you have taken the pains to set it together, take it for your pains. 115

Pro. No, no; you shall have it for bearing the letter.

Speed. Well, I perceive I must be fain to bear with you.

Pro. Why, sir, how do you bear with me?

Speed. Marry, sir, the letter, very orderly; having nothing but the word 'noddy' for my pains. 120

Pro. Beshrew me, but you have a quick wit.

Speed. And yet it cannot overtake your slow purse.

Pro. Come, come, open the matter in brief: what said she?

Speed. Open your purse, that the money and the matter 125 may be both at once delivered.

Pro. Well, sir, here is for your pains. What said she?

Speed. Truly, sir, I think you'll hardly win her.

Pro. Why, couldst thou perceive so much from her?

Speed. Sir, I could perceive nothing at all from her; 130 no, not so much as a ducat for delivering your letter: and being so hard to me that brought your mind, I fear she'll prove as hard to you in telling your mind. Give her no token but stones; for she's as hard as steel.

Pro. What said she? nothing? 135

Speed. No, not so much as 'Take this for thy pains.' To testify your bounty, I thank you, you have testerned me; in requital whereof, henceforth carry your letters yourself: and so, sir, I'll commend you to my master.

Pro. Go, go, be gone, to save your ship from wreck, 140 Which cannot perish having thee aboard, Being destined to a drier death on shore. [Exit Speed. I must go send some better messenger: I fear my Julia would not deign my lines, Receiving them from such a worthless post. [Exit. 145

Notes: I, 1.

8: with] in Capell. 19: my] F1. thy F2 F3 F4. 21-28: Put in the margin as spurious by Pope. 25: for] but Collier MS. 28: thee] om. S. Walker conj. See note (II). 30: fading] om. Hanmer. 48: blasting] blasted Collier MS. 57: To] F1. At F2 F3 F4. To Milan!—let me hear Malone conj. 65: leave] Pope. love Ff. 69: Made] Make Johnson conj. 70: SCENE II. Pope. 70-144: Put in the margin by Pope. 77: a] F2 F3 F4. om. F1. 89: follow] follows Pope. 102: astray] a stray Theobald (Thirlby conj.) Nay: ... astray,] Edd. Nay, ... astray: Ff. 105: a] the Delius (Capell conj.). 108, 109: Pro. But what said she? Speed. [First nodding] Ay.] Edd. Pro. But what said she? Sp. I. Ff. Pro. But what said she? Speed. She nodded and said I. Pope. Pro. But what said she? Did she nod? [Speed nods] Speed. I. Theobald. Pro. But what said she? [Speed nods] Did she nod? Speed. I. Capell. 110: Nod—Ay—] Nod—I, Ff. 111, 112: say ... say] F1. said ... said F2 F3 F4. 126: at once] F1. om. F2 F3 F4. 130-134: Printed as verse in Ff. 130: from her] from her better Collier MS. to rhyme with letter in the next line. 132: brought] brought to her Collier MS. 133: your] F1. her F2 F3 F4. you her Collier MS. 135: What said she? nothing?] What said she, nothing? Ff. What, said she nothing? Pope. 137: as 'Take ... I thank you] as 'I thank you; take ... Edd. conj. testerned] F2 F3 F4. cestern'd F1. 138: henceforth] F1 F3 F4. hencefore F2. letters] F1. letter F2 F3 F4.

SCENE II. The same. Garden of JULIA'S house.


Jul. But say, Lucetta, now we are alone, Wouldst thou, then, counsel me to fall in love?

Luc. Ay, madam; so you stumble not unheedfully.

Jul. Of all the fair resort of gentlemen That every day with parle encounter me, 5 In thy opinion which is worthiest love?

Luc. Please you repeat their names, I'll show my mind According to my shallow simple skill.

Jul. What think'st thou of the fair Sir Eglamour?

Luc. As of a knight well-spoken, neat and fine; 10 But, were I you, he never should be mine.

Jul. What think'st thou of the rich Mercatio?

Luc. Well of his wealth; but of himself, so so.

Jul. What think'st thou of the gentle Proteus?

Luc. Lord, Lord! to see what folly reigns in us! 15

Jul. How now! what means this passion at his name?

Luc. Pardon, dear madam: 'tis a passing shame That I, unworthy body as I am, Should censure thus on lovely gentlemen.

Jul. Why not on Proteus, as of all the rest? 20

Luc. Then thus,—of many good I think him best.

Jul. Your reason?

Luc. I have no other but a woman's reason; I think him so, because I think him so.

Jul. And wouldst thou have me cast my love on him? 25

Luc. Ay, if you thought your love not cast away.

Jul. Why, he, of all the rest, hath never moved me.

Luc. Yet he, of all the rest, I think, best loves ye.

Jul. His little speaking shows his love but small.

Luc. Fire that's closest kept burns most of all. 30

Jul. They do not love that do not show their love.

Luc. O, they love least that let men know their love.

Jul. I would I knew his mind.

Luc. Peruse this paper, madam.

Jul. 'To Julia.'—Say, from whom? 35

Luc. That the contents will show.

Jul. Say, say, who gave it thee?

Luc. Sir Valentine's page; and sent, I think, from Proteus. He would have given it you; but I, being in the way, Did in your name receive it: pardon the fault, I pray. 40

Jul. Now, by my modesty, a goodly broker! Dare you presume to harbour wanton lines? To whisper and conspire against my youth? Now, trust me, 'tis an office of great worth, And you an officer fit for the place. 45 There, take the paper: see it be return'd; Or else return no more into my sight.

Luc. To plead for love deserves more fee than hate.

Jul. Will ye be gone?

Luc. That you may ruminate. [Exit.

Jul. And yet I would I had o'erlook'd the letter: 50 It were a shame to call her back again, And pray her to a fault for which I chid her. What a fool is she, that knows I am a maid, And would not force the letter to my view! Since maids, in modesty, say 'no' to that 55 Which they would have the profferer construe 'ay.' Fie, fie, how wayward is this foolish love, That, like a testy babe, will scratch the nurse, And presently, all humbled, kiss the rod! How churlishly I chid Lucetta hence, 60 When willingly I would have had her here! How angerly I taught my brow to frown, When inward joy enforced my heart to smile! My penance is, to call Lucetta back, And ask remission for my folly past. 65 What, ho! Lucetta!

Re-enter LUCETTA.

Luc. What would your ladyship?

Jul. Is't near dinner-time?

Luc. I would it were; That you might kill your stomach on your meat, And not upon your maid.

Jul. What is't that you took up so gingerly? 70

Luc. Nothing.

Jul. Why didst thou stoop, then?

Luc. To take a paper up that I let fall.

Jul. And is that paper nothing?

Luc. Nothing concerning me. 75

Jul. Then let it lie for those that it concerns.

Luc. Madam, it will not lie where it concerns, Unless it have a false interpreter.

Jul. Some love of yours hath writ to you in rhyme.

Luc. That I might sing it, madam, to a tune. 80 Give me a note: your ladyship can set.

Jul. —As little by such toys as may be possible. Best sing it to the tune of 'Light o' love.'

Luc. It is too heavy for so light a tune.

Jul. Heavy! belike it hath some burden, then? 85

Luc. Ay; and melodious were it, would you sing it.

Jul. And why not you?

Luc. I cannot reach so high.

Jul. Let's see your song. How now, minion!

Luc. Keep tune there still, so you will sing it out: And yet methinks I do not like this tune. 90

Jul. You do not?

Luc. No, madam; it is too sharp.

Jul. You, minion, are too saucy.

Luc. Nay, now you are too flat, And mar the concord with too harsh a descant: There wanteth but a mean to fill your song. 95

Jul. The mean is drown'd with your unruly bass.

Luc. Indeed, I bid the base for Proteus.

Jul. This babble shall not henceforth trouble me. Here is a coil with protestation! [Tears the letter. Go get you gone, and let the papers lie: 100 You would be fingering them, to anger me.

Luc. She makes it strange; but she would be best pleased To be so anger'd with another letter. [Exit.

Jul. Nay, would I were so anger'd with the same! O hateful hands, to tear such loving words! 105 Injurious wasps, to feed on such sweet honey, And kill the bees, that yield it, with your stings! I'll kiss each several paper for amends. Look, here is writ 'kind Julia.' Unkind Julia! As in revenge of thy ingratitude, 110 I throw thy name against the bruising stones, Trampling contemptuously on thy disdain. And here is writ 'love-wounded Proteus.' Poor wounded name! my bosom, as a bed, Shall lodge thee, till thy wound be throughly heal'd; 115 And thus I search it with a sovereign kiss. But twice or thrice was 'Proteus' written down. Be calm, good wind, blow not a word away, Till I have found each letter in the letter, Except mine own name: that some whirlwind bear 120 Unto a ragged, fearful-hanging rock, And throw it thence into the raging sea! Lo, here in one line is his name twice writ, 'Poor forlorn Proteus, passionate Proteus, To the sweet Julia':—that I'll tear away.— 125 And yet I will not, sith so prettily He couples it to his complaining names. Thus will I fold them one upon another: Now kiss, embrace, contend, do what you will.

Re-enter LUCETTA.

Luc. Madam, 130 Dinner is ready, and your father stays.

Jul. Well, let us go.

Luc. What, shall these papers lie like tell-tales here?

Jul. If you respect them, best to take them up.

Luc. Nay, I was taken up for laying them down: 135 Yet here they shall not lie, for catching cold.

Jul. I see you have a month's mind to them.

Luc. Ay, madam, you may say what sights you see; I see things too, although you judge I wink.

Jul. Come, come; will't please you go? [Exeunt. 140

Notes: I, 2.

SCENE II.] SCENE III. Pope. Garden &c.] Malone. Changes to Julia's chamber. Pope. 1: now we are] F1. now are we F2 F3 F4. 5: parle] par'le Ff. 15: reigns] feigns Anon. conj. 18: am] can Collier MS. 19: censure ... gentlemen] censure on a lovely gentleman S. Verges conj. censure on this lovely gentleman Edd. conj. thus] pass Hanmer. on lovely gentlemen] a lovely gentleman Pope. a loving gentleman Collier MS. 20: of] on S. Verges conj. 30: Fire] Ff. The fire Pope. that's] that is Johnson. 39: being in the way] being by Pope. 40: pardon the fault, I pray] pardon me Pope. 53: What a fool] What 'foole F1 F2 F3. What fool F4. See note (III). 67: Is't] Is it Capell. near] om. Boswell. 81: F1 omits the stop after set. 83: o' Love] Theobald. O, Love F1 F2. O Love F3 F4. 88: How now] Why, how now Hanmer. After this line Hanmer adds a stage direction [Gives her a box on the ear]. 96: your] you F1. 99: [Tears the letter.] [Tears it. Pope. 102: best pleased] pleased better Collier MS. 103: [Exit] F2. 121: fearful-hanging] Delius. fearful, hanging Ff. 130, 131: Madam, Dinner is] Madam, dinner's Capell conj. 137: to] unto Collier MS. them.] them, minion. Hanmer. 138: say what sights you see] see what sights you think Collier MS.

SCENE III. The same. ANTONIO'S house.


Ant. Tell me, Panthino, what sad talk was that Wherewith my brother held you in the cloister?

Pan. 'Twas of his nephew Proteus, your son.

Ant. Why, what of him?

Pan. He wonder'd that your lordship Would suffer him to spend his youth at home, 5 While other men, of slender reputation, Put forth their sons to seek preferment out: Some to the wars, to try their fortune there; Some to discover islands far away; Some to the studious universities. 10 For any, or for all these exercises, He said that Proteus your son was meet; And did request me to importune you To let him spend his time no more at home, Which would be great impeachment to his age, 15 In having known no travel in his youth.

Ant. Nor need'st thou much importune me to that Whereon this month I have been hammering. I have consider'd well his loss of time, And how he cannot be a perfect man, 20 Not being tried and tutor'd in the world: Experience is by industry achieved, And perfected by the swift course of time. Then, tell me, whither were I best to send him?

Pan. I think your lordship is not ignorant 25 How his companion, youthful Valentine, Attends the emperor in his royal court.

Ant. I know it well.

Pan. 'Twere good, I think, your lordship sent him thither: There shall he practise tilts and tournaments, 30 Hear sweet discourse, converse with noblemen, And be in eye of every exercise Worthy his youth and nobleness of birth.

Ant. I like thy counsel; well hast thou advised: And that thou mayst perceive how well I like it 35 The execution of it shall make known. Even with the speediest expedition I will dispatch him to the emperor's court.

Pan. To-morrow, may it please you, Don Alphonso, With other gentlemen of good esteem, 40 Are journeying to salute the emperor, And to commend their service to his will.

Ant. Good company; with them shall Proteus go: And, in good time! now will we break with him.


Pro. Sweet love! sweet lines! sweet life! 45 Here is her hand, the agent of her heart; Here is her oath for love, her honour's pawn. O, that our fathers would applaud our loves, To seal our happiness with their consents! O heavenly Julia! 50

Ant. How now! what letter are you reading there?

Pro. May't please your lordship, 'tis a word or two Of commendations sent from Valentine, Deliver'd by a friend that came from him.

Ant. Lend me the letter; let me see what news. 55

Pro. There is no news, my lord; but that he writes How happily he lives, how well beloved, And daily graced by the emperor; Wishing me with him, partner of his fortune.

Ant. And how stand you affected to his wish? 60

Pro. As one relying on your lordship's will, And not depending on his friendly wish.

Ant. My will is something sorted with his wish. Muse not that I thus suddenly proceed; For what I will, I will, and there an end. 65 I am resolved that thou shalt spend some time With Valentinus in the emperor's court: What maintenance he from his friends receives, Like exhibition thou shalt have from me. To-morrow be in readiness to go: 70 Excuse it not, for I am peremptory.

Pro. My lord, I cannot be so soon provided: Please you, deliberate a day or two.

Ant. Look, what thou want'st shall be sent after thee: No more of stay! to-morrow thou must go. 75 Come on, Panthino: you shall be employ'd To hasten on his expedition. [Exeunt Ant. and Pan.

Pro. Thus have I shunn'd the fire for fear of burning, And drench'd me in the sea, where I am drown'd. I fear'd to show my father Julia's letter, 80 Lest he should take exceptions to my love; And with the vantage of mine own excuse Hath he excepted most against my love. O, how this spring of love resembleth The uncertain glory of an April day, 85 Which now shows all the beauty of the sun, And by and by a cloud takes all away!

Re-enter PANTHINO.

Pan. Sir Proteus, your father calls for you: He is in haste; therefore, I pray you, go.

Pro. Why, this it is: my heart accords thereto, 90 And yet a thousand times it answers 'no.' [Exeunt.

Notes: I, 3.

SCENE III.] SCENE IV. Pope. Antonio's House.] Theobald. 1: Panthino] F1 F2. Panthion F3 F4. 21: and] F1. nor F2 F3 F4. 24: whither] F2 F3 F4. whether F1. 44: And, in good time!] And in good time: F1. And in good time, F2 F3 F4. And,—in good time:—Dyce. 44: Enter Proteus] F2. 45: sweet life] sweet life! sweet Julia Capell. 49: To] And Collier MS. 65: there] F1 F2. there's F3 F4. 67: Valentinus] F1. Valentino F2 F3 F4. Valentine Warburton. 77: [Exeunt Ant. and Pan.]. Rowe. 84: resembleth] resembleth well Pope. resembleth right Johnson conj. 86: sun] light Johnson conj. 88: Re-enter Panthino.] om. F1. Enter. F2. father] fathers F1. 91: [Exeunt.] Exeunt. Finis. Ff.


SCENE I. Milan. The DUKE'S Palace.


Speed. Sir, your glove.

Val. Not mine; my gloves are on.

Speed. Why, then, this may be yours, for this is but one.

Val. Ha! let me see: ay, give it me, it's mine: Sweet ornament that decks a thing divine! Ah, Silvia, Silvia! 5

Speed. Madam Silvia! Madam Silvia!

Val. How now, sirrah?

Speed. She is not within hearing, sir.

Val. Why, sir, who bade you call her?

Speed. Your worship, sir; or else I mistook. 10

Val. Well, you'll still be too forward.

Speed. And yet I was last chidden for being too slow.

Val. Go to, sir: tell me, do you know Madam Silvia?

Speed. She that your worship loves?

Val. Why, how know you that I am in love? 15

Speed. Marry, by these special marks: first, you have learned, like Sir Proteus, to wreathe your arms, like a malecontent; to relish a love-song, like a robin-redbreast; to walk alone, like one that had the pestilence; to sigh, like a school-boy that had lost his A B C; to weep, like a young 20 wench that had buried her grandam; to fast, like one that takes diet; to watch, like one that fears robbing; to speak puling, like a beggar at Hallowmas. You were wont, when you laughed, to crow like a cock; when you walked, to walk like one of the lions; when you fasted, it was presently after 25 dinner; when you looked sadly, it was for want of money: and now you are metamorphosed with a mistress, that, when I look on you, I can hardly think you my master.

Val. Are all these things perceived in me?

Speed. They are all perceived without ye. 30

Val. Without me? they cannot.

Speed. Without you? nay, that's certain, for, without you were so simple, none else would: but you are so without these follies, that these follies are within you, and shine through you like the water in an urinal, that not an eye that 35 sees you but is a physician to comment on your malady.

Val. But tell me, dost thou know my lady Silvia?

Speed. She that you gaze on so as she sits at supper?

Val. Hast thou observed that? even she, I mean.

Speed. Why, sir, I know her not. 40

Val. Dost thou know her by my gazing on her, and yet knowest her not?

Speed. Is she not hard-favoured, sir?

Val. Not so fair, boy, as well-favoured.

Speed. Sir, I know that well enough. 45

Val. What dost thou know?

Speed. That she is not so fair as, of you, well favoured.

Val. I mean that her beauty is exquisite, but her favour infinite.

Speed. That's because the one is painted, and the other 50 out of all count.

Val. How painted? and how out of count?

Speed. Marry, sir, so painted, to make her fair, that no man counts of her beauty.

Val. How esteemest thou me? I account of her beauty. 55

Speed. You never saw her since she was deformed.

Val. How long hath she been deformed?

Speed. Ever since you loved her.

Val. I have loved her ever since I saw her; and still I see her beautiful. 60

Speed. If you love her, you cannot see her.

Val. Why?

Speed. Because Love is blind. O, that you had mine eyes; or your own eyes had the lights they were wont to have when you chid at Sir Proteus for going ungartered! 65

Val. What should I see then?

Speed. Your own present folly, and her passing deformity: for he, being in love, could not see to garter his hose; and you, being in love, cannot see to put on your hose.

Val. Belike, boy, then, you are in love; for last morning 70 you could not see to wipe my shoes.

Speed. True, sir; I was in love with my bed: I thank you, you swinged me for my love, which makes me the bolder to chide you for yours.

Val. In conclusion, I stand affected to her. 75

Speed. I would you were set, so your affection would cease.

Val. Last night she enjoined me to write some lines to one she loves.

Speed. And have you? 80

Val. I have.

Speed. Are they not lamely writ?

Val. No, boy, but as well as I can do them. Peace! here she comes.

Speed. [Aside] O excellent motion! O exceeding puppet! 85 Now will he interpret to her.


Val. Madam and mistress, a thousand good-morrows.

Speed. [Aside] O, give ye good even! here's a million of manners.

Sil. Sir Valentine and servant, to you two thousand. 90

Speed. [Aside] He should give her interest, and she gives it him.

Val. As you enjoin'd me, I have writ your letter Unto the secret nameless friend of yours; Which I was much unwilling to proceed in, 95 But for my duty to your ladyship.

Sil. I thank you, gentle servant: 'tis very clerkly done.

Val. Now trust me, madam, it came hardly off; For, being ignorant to whom it goes, I writ at random, very doubtfully. 100

Sil. Perchance you think too much of so much pains?

Val. No, madam; so it stead you, I will write, Please you command, a thousand times as much; And yet—

Sil. A pretty period! Well, I guess the sequel; 105 And yet I will not name it;—and yet I care not;— And yet take this again:—and yet I thank you; Meaning henceforth to trouble you no more.

Speed. [Aside] And yet you will; and yet another 'yet.'

Val. What means your ladyship? do you not like it? 110

Sil. Yes, yes: the lines are very quaintly writ; But since unwillingly, take them again. Nay, take them.

Val. Madam, they are for you.

Sil. Ay, ay: you writ them, sir, at my request; 115 But I will none of them; they are for you; I would have had them writ more movingly.

Val. Please you, I'll write your ladyship another.

Sil. And when it's writ, for my sake read it over, And if it please you, so; if not, why, so. 120

Val. If it please me, madam, what then?

Sil. Why, if it please you, take it for your labour: And so, good morrow, servant. [Exit.

Speed. O jest unseen, inscrutable, invisible, As a nose on a man's face, or a weathercock on a steeple! 125 My master sues to her; and she hath taught her suitor, He being her pupil, to become her tutor. O excellent device! was there ever heard a better, That my master, being scribe, to himself should write the letter?

Val. How now, sir? what are you reasoning with 130 yourself?

Speed. Nay. I was rhyming: 'tis you that have the reason.

Val. To do what?

Speed. To be a spokesman for Madam Silvia. 135

Val. To whom?

Speed. To yourself: why, she wooes you by a figure.

Val. What figure?

Speed. By a letter, I should say.

Val. Why, she hath not writ to me? 140

Speed. What need she, when she hath made you write to yourself? Why, do you not perceive the jest?

Val. No, believe me.

Speed. No believing you, indeed, sir. But did you perceive her earnest? 145

Val. She gave me none, except an angry word.

Speed. Why, she hath given you a letter.

Val. That's the letter I writ to her friend.

Speed. And that letter hath she delivered, and there an end. 150

Val. I would it were no worse.

Speed. I'll warrant you, 'tis as well: For often have you writ to her; and she, in modesty, Or else for want of idle time, could not again reply; Or fearing else some messenger, that might her mind discover, 155 Herself hath taught her love himself to write unto her lover. All this I speak in print, for in print I found it. Why muse you, sir? 'tis dinner-time.

Val. I have dined.

Speed. Ay, but hearken, sir; though the chameleon 160 Love can feed on the air, I am one that am nourished by my victuals, and would fain have meat. O, be not like your mistress; be moved, be moved. [Exeunt.

Notes: II, 1.

19: had] hath Collier MS. 21: buried] F1. lost F2 F3 F4. 27: you are] you are so Collier MS. 32: Without you?] Without you! Dyce. 33: would] would be Collier MS. 41: my] F1 F2. om. F3 F4. 68, 69: See note (IV). 76: set,] set; Malone. 85, 88, 91: [Aside] Capell. 91: Speed.] F1 F4. Sil. F2 F3. 96: for] om. F3 F4. 102: stead] steed Ff. 106: name it] name 't Capell. and yet] yet Pope. 109: [Aside] Rowe. 114: for] writ for Anon. conj. 124, 125: Printed as prose by Pope. 129: scribe] the scribe Pope. 137: wooes] woes Ff. (IV. ii. 138. woe F1. wooe F2 F3 F4.) 149: there] F1. there's F2 F3 F4.

SCENE II. Verona. JULIA'S house.


Pro. Have patience, gentle Julia.

Jul. I must, where is no remedy.

Pro. When possibly I can, I will return.

Jul. If you turn not, you will return the sooner. Keep this remembrance for thy Julia's sake. 5 [Giving a ring.

Pro. Why, then, we'll make exchange; here, take you this.

Jul. And seal the bargain with a holy kiss.

Pro. Here is my hand for my true constancy; And when that hour o'erslips me in the day Wherein I sigh not, Julia, for thy sake, 10 The next ensuing hour some foul mischance Torment me for my love's forgetfulness! My father stays my coming; answer not; The tide is now:—nay, not thy tide of tears; That tide will stay me longer than I should. 15 Julia, farewell! [Exit Julia. What, gone without a word? Ay, so true love should do: it cannot speak; For truth hath better deeds than words to grace it.


Pan. Sir Proteus, you are stay'd for.

Pro. Go; I come, I come. 20 Alas! this parting strikes poor lovers dumb. [Exeunt.

Notes: II, 2.

5: [Giving a ring] Rowe. 16: [Exit Julia] Rowe. 20: I come, I come] I come Pope.

SCENE III. The same. A street.

Enter LAUNCE, leading a dog.

Launce. Nay, 'twill be this hour ere I have done weeping; all the kind of the Launces have this very fault. I have received my proportion, like the prodigious son, and am going with Sir Proteus to the Imperial's court. I think Crab my dog be the sourest-natured dog that lives: my mother 5 weeping, my father wailing, my sister crying, our maid howling, our cat wringing her hands, and all our house in a great perplexity, yet did not this cruel-hearted cur shed one tear: he is a stone, a very pebble stone, and has no more pity in him than a dog: a Jew would have wept to have 10 seen our parting; why, my grandam, having no eyes, look you, wept herself blind at my parting. Nay, I'll shew you the manner of it. This shoe is my father: no, this left shoe is my father: no, no, this left shoe is my mother: nay, that cannot be so neither: yes, it is so, it is so, it hath the worser 15 sole. This shoe, with the hole in it, is my mother, and this my father; a vengeance on't! there 'tis: now, sir, this staff is my sister, for, look you, she is as white as a lily, and as small as a wand: this hat is Nan, our maid: I am the dog: no, the dog is himself, and I am the dog,—Oh! the dog is 20 me, and I am myself; ay, so, so. Now come I to my father; Father, your blessing: now should not the shoe speak a word for weeping: now should I kiss my father; well, he weeps on. Now come I to my mother: O, that she could speak now like a wood woman! Well, I kiss her; 25 why, there 'tis; here's my mother's breath up and down. Now come I to my sister; mark the moan she makes. Now the dog all this while sheds not a tear, nor speaks a word; but see how I lay the dust with my tears.


Pan. Launce, away, away, aboard! thy master is shipped, 30 and thou art to post after with oars. What's the matter? why weepest thou, man? Away, ass! you'll lose the tide, if you tarry any longer.

Launce. It is no matter if the tied were lost; for it is the unkindest tied that ever any man tied. 35

Pan. What's the unkindest tide?

Launce. Why, he that's tied here, Crab, my dog.

Pan. Tut, man, I mean thou'lt lose the flood: and, in losing the flood, lose thy voyage, and, in losing thy voyage, lose thy master, and, in losing thy master, lose thy service, 40 and, in losing thy service,—Why dost thou stop my mouth?

Launce. For fear thou shouldst lose thy tongue.

Pan. Where should I lose my tongue?

Launce. In thy tale.

Pan. In thy tail! 45

Launce. Lose the tide, and the voyage, and the master, and the service, and the tied! Why, man, if the river were dry, I am able to fill it with my tears; if the wind were down, I could drive the boat with my sighs.

Pan. Come, come away, man; I was sent to call thee. 50

Launce. Sir, call me what thou darest.

Pan. Wilt thou go?

Launce. Well, I will go. [Exeunt.

Notes: II, 3.

9: pebble] pibble Ff. 20: I am the dog] I am me Hanmer. Oh, the dog is me] Ay, the dog is the dog Hanmer. 25: she] the shoe Hanmer. a wood woman] Theobald. a would woman Ff. an ould woman Pope. a wild woman Collier MS. Malone (Blackstone conj.) punctuates (O that she could speak now!) 35: tied ... tied] Tide ... tide F1. Tide ... tyde F2 F3 F4. 45: thy tail!] my tail? Hanmer. [Kicking him. Anon. conj. 46: tide] Tide F1 F4. Tyde F2 F3. flood Pope. tied Collier. 47: and the tied] Singer. and the tide Ff. om. Capell. The tide! Steevens. indeed! S. Verges conj.

SCENE IV. Milan. The DUKE'S palace.


Sil. Servant!

Val. Mistress?

Speed. Master, Sir Thurio frowns on you.

Val. Ay, boy, it's for love.

Speed. Not of you. 5

Val. Of my mistress, then.

Speed. 'Twere good you knocked him. [Exit.

Sil. Servant, you are sad.

Val. Indeed, madam, I seem so.

Thu. Seem you that you are not? 10

Val. Haply I do.

Thu. So do counterfeits.

Val. So do you.

Thu. What seem I that I am not?

Val. Wise. 15

Thu. What instance of the contrary?

Val. Your folly.

Thu. And how quote you my folly?

Val. I quote it in your jerkin.

Thu. My jerkin is a doublet. 20

Val. Well, then, I'll double your folly.

Thu. How?

Sil. What, angry, Sir Thurio! do you change colour?

Val. Give him leave, madam; he is a kind of chameleon.

Thu. That hath more mind to feed on your blood than 25 live in your air.

Val. You have said, sir.

Thu. Ay, sir, and done too, for this time.

Val. I know it well, sir; you always end ere you begin.

Sil. A fine volley of words, gentlemen, and quickly 30 shot off.

Val. 'Tis indeed, madam; we thank the giver.

Sil. Who is that, servant?

Val. Yourself, sweet lady; for you gave the fire. Sir Thurio borrows his wit from your ladyship's looks, and 35 spends what he borrows kindly in your company.

Thu. Sir, if you spend word for word with me, I shall make your wit bankrupt.

Val. I know it well, sir; you have an exchequer of words, and, I think, no other treasure to give your followers, 40 for it appears, by their bare liveries, that they live by your bare words.

Sil. No more, gentlemen, no more:—here comes my father.

Enter DUKE.

Duke. Now, daughter Silvia, you are hard beset. 45 Sir Valentine, your father's in good health: What say you to a letter from your friends Of much good news?

Val. My lord, I will be thankful To any happy messenger from thence.

Duke. Know ye Don Antonio, your countryman? 50

Val. Ay, my good lord, I know the gentleman To be of worth, and worthy estimation, And not without desert so well reputed.

Duke. Hath he not a son?

Val. Ay, my good lord; a son that well deserves 55 The honour and regard of such a father.

Duke. You know him well?

Val. I know him as myself; for from our infancy We have conversed and spent our hours together: And though myself have been an idle truant, 60 Omitting the sweet benefit of time To clothe mine age with angel-like perfection, Yet hath Sir Proteus, for that's his name, Made use and fair advantage of his days; His years but young, but his experience old; 65 His head unmellow'd, but his judgment ripe; And, in a word, for far behind his worth Comes all the praises that I now bestow, He is complete in feature and in mind With all good grace to grace a gentleman. 70

Duke. Beshrew me, sir, but if he make this good, He is as worthy for an empress' love As meet to be an emperor's counsellor. Well, sir, this gentleman is come to me, With commendation from great potentates; 75 And here he means to spend his time awhile: I think 'tis no unwelcome news to you.

Val. Should I have wish'd a thing, it had been he.

Duke. Welcome him, then, according to his worth. Silvia, I speak to you, and you, Sir Thurio, 80 For Valentine, I need not cite him to it: I will send him hither to you presently. [Exit.

Val. This is the gentleman I told your ladyship Had come along with me, but that his mistress Did hold his eyes lock'd in her crystal looks. 85

Sil. Belike that now she hath enfranchised them, Upon some other pawn for fealty.

Val. Nay, sure, I think she holds them prisoners still.

Sil. Nay, then, he should be blind; and, being blind, How could he see his way to seek out you? 90

Val. Why, lady, Love hath twenty pair of eyes.

Thu. They say that Love hath not an eye at all.

Val. To see such lovers, Thurio, as yourself: Upon a homely object Love can wink.

Sil. Have done, have done; here comes the gentleman. 95


Val. Welcome, dear Proteus! Mistress, I beseech you, Confirm his welcome with some special favour.

Sil. His worth is warrant for his welcome hither, If this be he you oft have wish'd to hear from.

Val. Mistress, it is: sweet lady, entertain him 100 To be my fellow-servant to your ladyship.

Sil. Too low a mistress for so high a servant.

Pro. Not so, sweet lady: but too mean a servant To have a look of such a worthy mistress.

Val. Leave off discourse of disability: 105 Sweet lady, entertain him for your servant.

Pro. My duty will I boast of; nothing else.

Sil. And duty never yet did want his meed: Servant, you are welcome to a worthless mistress.

Pro. I'll die on him that says so but yourself. 110

Sil. That you are welcome?

Pro. That you are worthless.

Re-enter THURIO.

Thu. Madam, my lord your father would speak with you.

Sil. I wait upon his pleasure. Come, Sir Thurio, Go with me. Once more, new servant, welcome: I'll leave you to confer of home affairs; 115 When you have done, we look to hear from you.

Pro. We'll both attend upon your ladyship. [Exeunt Silvia and Thurio.

Val. Now, tell me, how do all from whence you came?

Pro. Your friends are well, and have them much commended.

Val. And how do yours?

Pro. I left them all in health. 120

Val. How does your lady? and how thrives your love?

Pro. My tales of love were wont to weary you; I know you joy not in a love-discourse.

Val. Ay, Proteus, but that life is alter'd now: I have done penance for contemning Love, 125 Whose high imperious thoughts have punish'd me With bitter fasts, with penitential groans, With nightly tears, and daily heart-sore sighs; For, in revenge of my contempt of love, Love hath chased sleep from my enthralled eyes, 130 And made them watchers of mine own heart's sorrow. O gentle Proteus, Love's a mighty lord, And hath so humbled me; as I confess There is no woe to his correction, Nor to his service no such joy on earth. 135 Now no discourse, except it be of love; Now can I break my fast, dine, sup and sleep, Upon the very naked name of love.

Pro. Enough; I read your fortune in your eye. Was this the idol that you worship so? 140

Val. Even she; and is she not a heavenly saint?

Pro. No; but she is an earthly paragon.

Val. Call her divine.

Pro. I will not flatter her.

Val. O, flatter me; for love delights in praises.

Pro. When I was sick, you gave me bitter pills; 145 And I must minister the like to you.

Val. Then speak the truth by her; if not divine, Yet let her be a principality, Sovereign to all the creatures on the earth.

Pro. Except my mistress.

Val. Sweet, except not any; 150 Except thou wilt except against my love.

Pro. Have I not reason to prefer mine own?

Val. And I will help thee to prefer her too: She shall be dignified with this high honour,— To bear my lady's train, lest the base earth 155 Should from her vesture chance to steal a kiss, And, of so great a favour growing proud, Disdain to root the summer-swelling flower, And make rough winter everlastingly.

Pro. Why, Valentine, what braggardism is this? 160

Val. Pardon me, Proteus: all I can is nothing To her, whose worth makes other worthies nothing; She is alone.

Pro. Then let her alone.

Val. Not for the world: why, man, she is mine own; And I as rich in having such a jewel 165 As twenty seas, if all their sand were pearl, The water nectar, and the rocks pure gold. Forgive me, that I do not dream on thee, Because thou see'st me dote upon my love. My foolish rival, that her father likes 170 Only for his possessions are so huge, Is gone with her along; and I must after, For love, thou know'st, is full of jealousy.

Pro. But she loves you?

Val. Ay, and we are betroth'd: nay, more, our marriage-hour, 175 With all the cunning manner of our flight, Determined of; how I must climb her window; The ladder made of cords; and all the means Plotted and 'greed on for my happiness. Good Proteus, go with me to my chamber, 180 In these affairs to aid me with thy counsel.

Pro. Go on before; I shall inquire you forth: I must unto the road, to disembark Some necessaries that I needs must use; And then I'll presently attend you. 185

Val. Will you make haste?

Pro. I will. [Exit Valentine. Even as one heat another heat expels, Or as one nail by strength drives out another, So the remembrance of my former love 190 Is by a newer object quite forgotten. Is it mine, or Valentine's praise, Her true perfection, or my false transgression, That makes me reasonless to reason thus? She is fair; and so is Julia, that I love.— 195 That I did love, for now my love is thaw'd; Which, like a waxen image 'gainst a fire, Bears no impression of the thing it was. Methinks my zeal to Valentine is cold, And that I love him not as I was wont. 200 O, but I love his lady too too much! And that's the reason I love him so little. How shall I dote on her with more advice, That thus without advice begin to love her! 'Tis but her picture I have yet beheld, 205 And that hath dazzled my reason's light; But when I look on her perfections, There is no reason but I shall be blind. If I can check my erring love, I will; If not, to compass her I'll use my skill. [Exit. 210

Notes: II, 4.

2: [They converse apart] Capell. 7: [Exit] Edd. See note (V). 21: I'll] Ile Ff. 'twill Collier MS. 45: SCENE V. Pope. Enter DUKE.] Enter DUKE attended. Capell. 49: happy] F1. om. F2 F3 F4. 50: ye] F1. you F2 F3 F4. 52: worth] wealth Collier MS. and S. Walker conj. 58: Know] Hanmer. Knew Ff. 68: comes] Ff. come Rowe. 77: unwelcome] F1. welcome F2 F3 F4. 81: cite] 'cite Malone. 82: I will] I'll Pope. [Exit] Rowe. 95: SCENE VI. Pope. Enter PROTEUS.] Enter. F2. Exit THURIO.] Collier. See note (V). 97: his] F1. this F2 F3 F4. 104: a worthy] a worthy a F1. 111: welcome] welcome, sir Capell. That you are worthless] No, that you are worthless Johnson. Re-enter THURIO.] om. Ff. Enter THURIO. Collier. Enter a Servant. Theobald. 112: Thu.] Ff. Serv. Theobald. 113: [Exit servant. Theobald. 114: Go] Go you Capell. new servant] my new servant Pope. 117: [Exeunt S. and T.] Rowe. 118: SCENE VII. Pope. 126: Whose] Those Johnson conj. 133: as I confess] as, I confess, Warburton. 135: no such] any Hanmer. 144: praises] F1. praise F2 F3 F4. 158: summer-swelling] summer-smelling Steevens conj. (withdrawn). 160: braggardism] Steevens. bragadism Ff. 162: makes] make F1. worthies] worth as Grant White. 163: Then] Why, then Hanmer. 167: rocks] F1. rocke F2. rock F3 F4. 175: Ay, and we are] Ay, And we're Edd. conj. nay, more] Nay, more, my Protheus Capell. marriage-hour] marriage Pope. 185: you] upon you Hanmer. on you Capell. 187: [Exit Val.] [Exit. F1. om. F2 F3 F4. [Exeunt Valentine and Speed. Dyce. See note (V). 192: Is it ... praise,] It is mine, or Valentine's praise? F1. Is it mine then, or Valentineans praise? F2 F3 F4. Is it mine then or Valentino's praise, Rowe, Pope. Is it mine eye or Valentine's praise, Theobald (Warburton). Is it mine eyne, or Valentino's praise, Hanmer. Is it mine own, or Valentino's praise, Capell. Is it her mien, or Valentinus' praise, Malone (Blakeway conj.). See note (VI). 206: dazzled] dazel'd F1. dazel'd so F2 F3 F4. 210: [Exit.] F2. [Exeunt. F1.

SCENE V. The same. A street.

Enter SPEED and LAUNCE severally.

Speed. Launce! by mine honesty, welcome to Padua!

Launce. Forswear not thyself, sweet youth; for I am not welcome. I reckon this always—that a man is never undone till he be hanged; nor never welcome to a place till some certain shot be paid, and the hostess say 'Welcome!' 5

Speed. Come on, you madcap, I'll to the alehouse with you presently; where, for one shot of five pence, thou shalt have five thousand welcomes. But, sirrah, how did thy master part with Madam Julia?

Launce. Marry, after they closed in earnest, they parted 10 very fairly in jest.

Speed. But shall she marry him?

Launce. No.

Speed. How, then? shall he marry her?

Launce. No, neither. 15

Speed. What, are they broken?

Launce. No, they are both as whole as a fish.

Speed. Why, then, how stands the matter with them?

Launce. Marry, thus; when it stands well with him, it stands well with her. 20

Speed. What an ass art thou! I understand thee not.

Launce. What a block art thou, that thou canst not! My staff understands me.

Speed. What thou sayest?

Launce. Ay, and what I do too: look thee, I'll but 25 lean, and my staff understands me.

Speed. It stands under thee, indeed.

Launce. Why, stand-under and under-stand is all one.

Speed. But tell me true, will't be a match?

Launce. Ask my dog: if he say ay, it will; if he say, 30 no, it will; if he shake his tail and say nothing, it will.

Speed. The conclusion is, then, that it will.

Launce. Thou shalt never get such a secret from me but by a parable.

Speed. 'Tis well that I get it so. But, Launce, how 35 sayest thou, that my master is become a notable lover?

Launce. I never knew him otherwise.

Speed. Than how?

Launce. A notable lubber, as thou reportest him to be.

Speed. Why, thou whoreson ass, thou mistakest me. 40

Launce. Why fool, I meant not thee; I meant thy master.

Speed. I tell thee, my master is become a hot lover.

Launce. Why, I tell thee, I care not though he burn himself in love. If thou wilt, go with me to the alehouse; if not, thou art an Hebrew, a Jew, and not worth the name 45 of a Christian.

Speed. Why?

Launce. Because thou hast not so much charity in thee as to go to the ale with a Christian. Wilt thou go?

Speed. At thy service. [Exeunt. 50

Notes: II, 5.

SCENE V.] SCENA QUINTA F1. SCENA QUARTA F2 F3 F4. SCENE VIII. Pope. 1: Padua] Ff. Milan Pope. See note (VII). 4: be] is Rowe. 21-28: Put in the margin as spurious by Pope. 36: that] F2 F3 F4. that that F1. 44: in love. If thou wilt, go] Knight. in love. If thou wilt go Ff. in love, if thou wilt go Collier (Malone conj.). alehouse] F1. alehouse, so F2 F3 F4. 49: ale] ale-house Rowe.

SCENE VI. The same. The DUKE'S palace.


Pro. To leave my Julia, shall I be forsworn; To love fair Silvia, shall I be forsworn; To wrong my friend, I shall be much forsworn; And even that power, which gave me first my oath, Provokes me to this threefold perjury; 5 Love bade me swear, and Love bids me forswear. O sweet-suggesting Love, if thou hast sinn'd, Teach me, thy tempted subject, to excuse it! At first I did adore a twinkling star, But now I worship a celestial sun. 10 Unheedful vows may needfully be broken; And he wants wit that wants resolved will To learn his wit to exchange the bad for better. Fie, fie, unreverend tongue! to call her bad, Whose sovereignty so oft thou hast preferr'd 15 With twenty thousand soul-confirming oaths. I cannot leave to love, and yet I do; But there I leave to love where I should love. Julia I lose, and Valentine I lose: If I keep them, I needs must lose myself; 20 If I lose them, thus find I by their loss For Valentine, myself, for Julia, Silvia. I to myself am dearer than a friend, For love is still most precious in itself; And Silvia—witness Heaven, that made her fair!— 25 Shows Julia but a swarthy Ethiope. I will forget that Julia is alive, Remembering that my love to her is dead; And Valentine I'll hold an enemy, Aiming at Silvia as a sweeter friend. 30 I cannot now prove constant to myself, Without some treachery used to Valentine. This night he meaneth with a corded ladder To climb celestial Silvia's chamber-window; Myself in counsel, his competitor. 35 Now presently I'll give her father notice Of their disguising and pretended flight; Who, all enraged, will banish Valentine; For Thurio, he intends, shall wed his daughter; But, Valentine being gone, I'll quickly cross 40 By some sly trick blunt Thurio's dull proceeding. Love, lend me wings to make my purpose swift, As thou hast lent me wit to plot this drift! [Exit.

Notes: II, 6.

SCENE VI.] SCENE IX. Pope. Enter PROTEUS.] Enter PROTHEUS solus. Ff. 1, 2: forsworn; ... forsworn;] Theobald. forsworn? ... forsworn? Ff. 7: sweet-suggesting] sweet suggestion, Pope. if thou hast] if I have Warburton. 16: soul-confirming] soul-confirmed Pope. 21: thus] this Theobald. by] F1. but F2 F3 F4. 24: most] more Steevens. in] to Collier MS. 35: counsel] counsaile F1 F2. councel F3. council F4. 37: pretended] intended Johnson conj. 43: this] F1. his F2 F3 F4.

SCENE VII. Verona. JULIA'S house.


Jul. Counsel, Lucetta; gentle girl, assist me; And, even in kind love, I do conjure thee, Who art the table wherein all my thoughts Are visibly character'd and engraved, To lesson me; and tell me some good mean, 5 How, with my honour, I may undertake A journey to my loving Proteus.

Luc. Alas, the way is wearisome and long!

Jul. A true-devoted pilgrim is not weary To measure kingdoms with his feeble steps; 10 Much less shall she that hath Love's wings to fly, And when the flight is made to one so dear, Of such divine perfection, as Sir Proteus.

Luc. Better forbear till Proteus make return.

Jul. O, know'st thou not, his looks are my soul's food? 15 Pity the dearth that I have pined in, By longing for that food so long a time. Didst thou but know the inly touch of love, Thou wouldst as soon go kindle fire with snow As seek to quench the fire of love with words. 20

Luc. I do not seek to quench your love's hot fire, But qualify the fire's extreme rage, Lest it should burn above the bounds of reason.

Jul. The more thou damm'st it up, the more it burns. The current that with gentle murmur glides, 25 Thou know'st, being stopp'd, impatiently doth rage; But when his fair course is not hindered, He makes sweet music with the enamell'd stones, Giving a gentle kiss to every sedge He overtaketh in his pilgrimage; 30 And so by many winding nooks he strays, With willing sport, to the wild ocean. Then let me go, and hinder not my course: I'll be as patient as a gentle stream, And make a pastime of each weary step, 35 Till the last step have brought me to my love; And there I'll rest, as after much turmoil A blessed soul doth in Elysium.

Luc. But in what habit will you go along?

Jul. Not like a woman; for I would prevent 40 The loose encounters of lascivious men: Gentle Lucetta, fit me with such weeds As may beseem some well-reputed page.

Luc. Why, then, your ladyship must cut your hair.

Jul. No, girl; I'll knit it up in silken strings 45 With twenty odd-conceited true-love knots. To be fantastic may become a youth Of greater time than I shall show to be.

Luc. What fashion, madam, shall I make your breeches?

Jul. That fits as well as, 'Tell me, good my lord, 50 What compass will you wear your farthingale?' Why even what fashion thou best likest, Lucetta.

Luc. You must needs have them with a codpiece, madam.

Jul. Out, out, Lucetta! that will be ill-favour'd.

Luc. A round hose, madam, now's not worth a pin, 55 Unless you have a codpiece to stick pins on.

Jul. Lucetta, as thou lovest me, let me have What thou think'st meet, and is most mannerly. But tell me, wench, how will the world repute me For undertaking so unstaid a journey? 60 I fear me, it will make me scandalized.

Luc. If you think so, then stay at home, and go not.

Jul. Nay, that I will not.

Luc. Then never dream on infamy, but go. If Proteus like your journey when you come, 65 No matter who's displeased when you are gone: I fear me, he will scarce be pleased withal.

Jul. That is the least, Lucetta, of my fear: A thousand oaths, an ocean of his tears, And instances of infinite of love, 70 Warrant me welcome to my Proteus.

Luc. All these are servants to deceitful men.

Jul. Base men, that use them to so base effect! But truer stars did govern Proteus' birth: His words are bonds, his oaths are oracles; 75 His love sincere, his thoughts immaculate; His tears pure messengers sent from his heart; His heart as far from fraud as heaven from earth.

Luc. Pray heaven he prove so, when you come to him!

Jul. Now, as thou lovest me, do him not that wrong, 80 To bear a hard opinion of his truth: Only deserve my love by loving him; And presently go with me to my chamber, To take a note of what I stand in need of, To furnish me upon my longing journey. 85 All that is mine I leave at thy dispose, My goods, my lands, my reputation; Only, in lieu thereof, dispatch me hence. Come, answer not, but to it presently! I am impatient of my tarriance. [Exeunt. 90

Notes: II, 7.

SCENE VII.] SCENE X. Pope. 13: perfection] F1 F2 F4. perfections F3. 18: inly] F1 F2. inchly F3 F4. 22: extreme] extremest Pope. 32: wild] wide Collier MS. 47: fantastic] fantantastique F2. 52: likest] Pope. likes Ff. 67: withal] with all F1 F4. withall F2 F3. 70: of infinite] F1. as infinite F2 F3 F4. of the infinite Malone. 85: longing] loving Collier MS. 89: to it] do it Warburton.


SCENE I. Milan. Ante-room in the DUKE'S palace.


Duke. Sir Thurio, give us leave, I pray, awhile; We have some secrets to confer about. [Exit Thu. Now, tell me, Proteus, what's your will with me?

Pro. My gracious lord, that which I would discover The law of friendship bids me to conceal; 5 But when I call to mind your gracious favours Done to me, undeserving as I am, My duty pricks me on to utter that Which else no worldly good should draw from me. Know, worthy prince, Sir Valentine, my friend, 10 This night intends to steal away your daughter: Myself am one made privy to the plot. I know you have determined to bestow her On Thurio, whom your gentle daughter hates; And should she thus be stol'n away from you, 15 It would be much vexation to your age. Thus, for my duty's sake, I rather chose To cross my friend in his intended drift Than, by concealing it, heap on your head A pack of sorrows, which would press you down, 20 Being unprevented, to your timeless grave.

Duke. Proteus, I thank thee for thine honest care; Which to requite, command me while I live. This love of theirs myself have often seen, Haply when they have judged me fast asleep; 25 And oftentimes have purposed to forbid Sir Valentine her company and my court: But, fearing lest my jealous aim might err, And so, unworthily disgrace the man, A rashness that I ever yet have shunn'd, 30 I gave him gentle looks; thereby to find That which thyself hast now disclosed to me. And, that thou mayst perceive my fear of this, Knowing that tender youth is soon suggested, I nightly lodge her in an upper tower, 35 The key whereof myself have ever kept; And thence she cannot be convey'd away.

Pro. Know, noble lord, they have devised a mean How he her chamber-window will ascend, And with a corded ladder fetch her down; 40 For which the youthful lover now is gone, And this way comes he with it presently; Where, if it please you, you may intercept him. But, good my Lord, do it so cunningly That my discovery be not aimed at; 45 For, love of you, not hate unto my friend, Hath made me publisher of this pretence.

Duke. Upon mine honour, he shall never know That I had any light from thee of this.

Pro. Adieu, my Lord; Sir Valentine is coming. [Exit. 50


Duke. Sir Valentine, whither away so fast?

Val. Please it your grace, there is a messenger That stays to bear my letters to my friends, And I am going to deliver them.

Duke. Be they of much import? 55

Val. The tenour of them doth but signify My health and happy being at your court.

Duke. Nay then, no matter; stay with me awhile; I am to break with thee of some affairs That touch me near, wherein thou must be secret. 60 'Tis not unknown to thee that I have sought To match my friend Sir Thurio to my daughter.

Val. I know it well, my Lord; and, sure, the match Were rich and honourable; besides, the gentleman Is full of virtue, bounty, worth and qualities 65 Beseeming such a wife as your fair daughter: Cannot your Grace win her to fancy him?

Duke. No, trust me; she is peevish, sullen, froward, Proud, disobedient, stubborn, lacking duty; Neither regarding that she is my child, 70 Nor fearing me as if I were her father: And, may I say to thee, this pride of hers, Upon advice, hath drawn my love from her; And, where I thought the remnant of mine age Should have been cherish'd by her child-like duty, 75 I now am full resolved to take a wife, And turn her out to who will take her in: Then let her beauty be her wedding-dower; For me and my possessions she esteems not.

Val. What would your Grace have me to do in this? 80

Duke. There is a lady in Verona here Whom I affect; but she is nice and coy, And nought esteems my aged eloquence: Now, therefore, would I have thee to my tutor,— For long agone I have forgot to court; 85 Besides, the fashion of the time is changed,— How and which way I may bestow myself, To be regarded in her sun-bright eye.

Val. Win her with gifts, if she respect not words: Dumb jewels often in their silent kind 90 More than quick words do move a woman's mind.

Duke. But she did scorn a present that I sent her.

Val. A woman sometimes scorns what best contents her. Send her another; never give her o'er; For scorn at first makes afterlove the more. 95 If she do frown, 'tis not in hate of you, But rather to beget more love in you: If she do chide, 'tis not to have you gone; For why, the fools are mad, if left alone. Take no repulse, whatever she doth say; 100 For 'get you gone,' she doth not mean 'away!' Flatter and praise, commend, extol their graces; Though ne'er so black, say they have angels' faces. That man that hath a tongue, I say, is no man, If with his tongue he cannot win a woman. 105

Duke. But she I mean is promised by her friends Unto a youthful gentleman of worth; And kept severely from resort of men, That no man hath access by day to her.

Val. Why, then, I would resort to her by night. 110

Duke. Ay, but the doors be lock'd, and keys kept safe, That no man hath recourse to her by night.

Val. What lets but one may enter at her window?

Duke. Her chamber is aloft, far from the ground, And built so shelving, that one cannot climb it 115 Without apparent hazard of his life.

Val. Why, then, a ladder, quaintly made of cords, To cast up, with a pair of anchoring hooks, Would serve to scale another Hero's tower, So bold Leander would adventure it. 120

Duke. Now, as thou art a gentleman of blood, Advise me where I may have such a ladder.

Val. When would you use it? pray, sir, tell me that.

Duke. This very night; for Love is like a child, That longs for every thing that he can come by. 125

Val. By seven o'clock I'll get you such a ladder.

Duke. But, hark thee; I will go to her alone: How shall I best convey the ladder thither?

Val. It will be light, my lord, that you may bear it Under a cloak that is of any length. 130

Duke. A cloak as long as thine will serve the turn?

Val. Ay, my good lord.

Duke. Then let me see thy cloak: I'll get me one of such another length.

Val. Why, any cloak will serve the turn, my lord.

Duke. How shall I fashion me to wear a cloak? 135 I pray thee, let me feel thy cloak upon me. What letter is this same? What's here? 'To Silvia'! And here an engine fit for my proceeding. I'll be so bold to break the seal for once. [Reads.

'My thoughts do harbour with my Silvia nightly; 140 And slaves they are to me, that send them flying: O, could their master come and go as lightly, Himself would lodge where senseless they are lying! My herald thoughts in thy pure bosom rest them; While I, their king, that thither them importune, 145 Do curse the grace that with such grace hath bless'd them, Because myself do want my servants' fortune: I curse myself, for they are sent by me, That they should harbour where their lord would be.

What's here? 150

'Silvia, this night I will enfranchise thee.'

'Tis so; and here's the ladder for the purpose. Why, Phaethon,—for thou art Merops' son,— Wilt thou aspire to guide the heavenly car, And with thy daring folly burn the world? 155 Wilt thou reach stars, because they shine on thee? Go, base intruder! overweening slave! Bestow thy fawning smiles on equal mates; And think my patience, more than thy desert, Is privilege for thy departure hence: 160 Thank me for this more than for all the favours, Which all too much I have bestow'd on thee. But if thou linger in my territories Longer than swiftest expedition Will give thee time to leave our royal court, 165 By heaven! my wrath shall far exceed the love I ever bore my daughter or thyself. Be gone! I will not hear thy vain excuse; But, as thou lovest thy life, make speed from hence. [Exit.

Val. And why not death rather than living torment? 170 To die is to be banish'd from myself; And Silvia is myself: banish'd from her, Is self from self: a deadly banishment! What light is light, if Silvia be not seen? What joy is joy, if Silvia be not by? 175 Unless it be to think that she is by, And feed upon the shadow of perfection. Except I be by Silvia in the night, There is no music in the nightingale; Unless I look on Silvia in the day, 180 There is no day for me to look upon: She is my essence; and I leave to be, If I be not by her fair influence Foster'd, illumined, cherish'd, kept alive. I fly not death, to fly his deadly doom: 185 Tarry I here, I but attend on death: But, fly I hence, I fly away from life.


Pro. Run, boy, run, run, and seek him out.

Launce. Soho, soho!

Pro. What seest thou? 190

Launce. Him we go to find: there's not a hair on's head but 'tis a Valentine.

Pro. Valentine?

Val. No.

Pro. Who then? his spirit? 195

Val. Neither.

Pro. What then?

Val. Nothing.

Launce. Can nothing speak? Master, shall I strike?

Pro. Who wouldst thou strike? 200

Launce. Nothing.

Pro. Villain, forbear.

Launce. Why, sir, I'll strike nothing: I pray you,—

Pro. Sirrah, I say, forbear. Friend Valentine, a word.

Val. My ears are stopt, and cannot hear good news, 205 So much of bad already hath possess'd them.

Pro. Then in dumb silence will I bury mine, For they are harsh, untuneable, and bad.

Val. Is Silvia dead?

Pro. No, Valentine. 210

Val. No Valentine, indeed, for sacred Silvia. Hath she forsworn me?

Pro. No, Valentine.

Val. No Valentine, if Silvia have forsworn me. What is your news? 215

Launce. Sir, there is a proclamation that you are vanished.

Pro. That thou art banished—O, that's the news!— From hence, from Silvia, and from me thy friend.

Val. O, I have fed upon this woe already, And now excess of it will make me surfeit. 220 Doth Silvia know that I am banished?

Pro. Ay, ay; and she hath offer'd to the doom— Which, unreversed, stands in effectual force— A sea of melting pearl, which some call tears: Those at her father's churlish feet she tender'd; 225 With them, upon her knees, her humble self; Wringing her hands, whose whiteness so became them As if but now they waxed pale for woe: But neither bended knees, pure hands held up, Sad sighs, deep groans, nor silver-shedding tears, 230 Could penetrate her uncompassionate sire; But Valentine, if he be ta'en, must die. Besides, her intercession chafed him so, When she for thy repeal was suppliant, That to close prison he commanded her, 235 With many bitter threats of biding there.

Val. No more; unless the next word that thou speak'st Have some malignant power upon my life: If so, I pray thee, breathe it in mine ear, As ending anthem of my endless dolour. 240

Pro. Cease to lament for that thou canst not help, And study help for that which thou lament'st. Time is the nurse and breeder of all good. Here if thou stay, thou canst not see thy love; Besides, thy staying will abridge thy life. 245 Hope is a lover's staff; walk hence with that, And manage it against despairing thoughts. Thy letters may be here, though thou art hence; Which, being writ to me, shall be deliver'd Even in the milk-white bosom of thy love. 250 The time now serves not to expostulate: Come, I'll convey thee through the city-gate; And, ere I part with thee, confer at large Of all that may concern thy love-affairs. As thou lovest Silvia, though not for thyself, 255 Regard thy danger, and along with me!

Val. I pray thee, Launce, an if thou seest my boy, Bid him make haste, and meet me at the North-gate.

Pro. Go, sirrah, find him out. Come, Valentine.

Val. O my dear Silvia! Hapless Valentine! 260

[Exeunt Val. and Pro.

Launce. I am but a fool, look you; and yet I have the wit to think my master is a kind of a knave: but that's all one, if he be but one knave. He lives not now that knows me to be in love; yet I am in love; but a team of horse shall not pluck that from me; nor who 'tis I love; and yet 265 'tis a woman; but what woman, I will not tell myself; and yet 'tis a milkmaid; yet 'tis not a maid, for she hath had gossips; yet 'tis a maid, for she is her master's maid, and serves for wages. She hath more qualities than a water-spaniel,— which is much in a bare Christian. 270 [Pulling out a paper.] Here is the cate-log of her condition. 'Imprimis: She can fetch and carry.' Why, a horse can do no more: nay, a horse cannot fetch, but only carry; therefore is she better than a jade. 'Item: She can milk;' look you, a sweet virtue in a maid with clean hands. 275

Enter SPEED.

Speed. How now, Signior Launce! what news with your mastership?

Launce. With my master's ship? why, it is at sea.

Speed. Well, your old vice still; mistake the word. What news, then, in your paper? 280

Launce. The blackest news that ever thou heardest.

Speed. Why, man, how black?

Launce. Why, as black as ink.

Speed. Let me read them.

Launce. Fie on thee, jolt-head! thou canst not read. 285

Speed. Thou liest; I can.

Launce. I will try thee. Tell me this: who begot thee?

Speed. Marry, the son of my grandfather.

Launce. O illiterate loiterer! it was the son of thy grandmother: this proves that thou canst not read. 290

Speed. Come, fool, come; try me in thy paper.

Launce. There; and Saint Nicholas be thy speed!

Speed [reads]. 'Imprimis: She can milk.'

Launce. Ay, that she can.

Speed. 'Item: She brews good ale.' 295

Launce. And thereof comes the proverb: 'Blessing of your heart, you brew good ale.'

Speed. 'Item: She can sew.'

Launce. That's as much as to say, Can she so?

Speed. 'Item: She can knit.' 300

Launce. What need a man care for a stock with a wench, when she can knit him a stock?

Speed. 'Item: She can wash and scour.'

Launce. A special virtue; for then she need not be washed and scoured. 305

Speed. 'Item: She can spin.'

Launce. Then may I set the world on wheels, when she can spin for her living.

Speed. 'Item: She hath many nameless virtues.'

Launce. That's as much as to say, bastard virtues; 310 that, indeed, know not their fathers, and therefore have no names.

Speed. 'Here follow her vices.'

Launce. Close at the heels of her virtues.

Speed. 'Item: She is not to be kissed fasting, in respect 315 of her breath.'

Launce. Well, that fault may be mended with a breakfast. Read on.

Speed. 'Item: She hath a sweet mouth.'

Launce. That makes amends for her sour breath. 320

Speed. 'Item: She doth talk in her sleep.'

Launce. It's no matter for that, so she sleep not in her talk.

Speed. 'Item: She is slow in words.'

Launce. O villain, that set this down among her vices! 325 To be slow in words is a woman's only virtue: I pray thee, out with't, and place it for her chief virtue.

Speed. 'Item: She is proud.'

Launce. Out with that too; it was Eve's legacy, and cannot be ta'en from her. 330

Speed. 'Item: She hath no teeth.'

Launce. I care not for that neither, because I love crusts.

Speed. 'Item: She is curst.'

Launce. Well, the best is, she hath no teeth to bite. 335

Speed. 'Item: She will often praise her liquor.'

Launce. If her liquor be good, she shall: if she will not, I will; for good things should be praised.

Speed. 'Item: She is too liberal.'

Launce. Of her tongue she cannot, for that's writ down 340 she is slow of; of her purse she shall not, for that I'll keep shut: now, of another thing she may, and that cannot I help. Well, proceed.

Speed. 'Item: She hath more hair than wit, and more faults than hairs, and more wealth than faults.' 345

Launce. Stop there; I'll have her: she was mine, and not mine, twice or thrice in that last article. Rehearse that once more.

Speed. 'Item: She hath more hair than wit,'—

Launce. More hair than wit? It may be; I'll prove it. 350 The cover of the salt hides the salt, and therefore it is more than the salt; the hair that covers the wit is more than the wit, for the greater hides the less. What's next?

Speed. 'And more faults than hairs,'—

Launce. That's monstrous: O, that that were out! 355

Speed. 'And more wealth than faults.'

Launce. Why, that word makes the faults gracious. Well, I'll have her: and if it be a match, as nothing is impossible,—

Speed. What then? 360

Launce. Why, then will I tell thee—that thy master stays for thee at the North-gate?

Speed. For me?

Launce. For thee! ay, who art thou? he hath stayed for a better man than thee. 365

Speed. And must I go to him?

Launce. Thou must run to him, for thou hast stayed so long, that going will scarce serve the turn.

Speed. Why didst not tell me sooner? pox of your love-letters! [Exit. 370

Launce. Now will he be swinged for reading my letter,—an unmannerly slave, that will thrust himself into secrets! I'll after, to rejoice in the boy's correction. [Exit.

Notes: III, 1.

Ante-room] Capell. 2: [Exit Thu.] Rowe. 7: as] F1 F3 F4. as as F2. 21: Being] If Pope. unprevented] F1 F2. unprepared F3 F4. 32: hast] hath Pope. 33: that] F1. om. F2 F3 F4. 50: [Exit] Rowe. Enter Valentine.] om. F1. [Enter. F2 F3 F4. 51: SCENE II. Pope. whither] F2. whether F1 (and elsewhere). 56: tenour] tenure Ff. 72: may I] I may Hanmer. 78: dower] dowre Ff. dowry Hanmer. 81: in Verona] Ff. sir, in Milan Pope. in Milano Collier MS. of Verona Halliwell. See note (VII). 83: nought] F2 F3 F4. naught F1. 89: respect] F1 F2 F3. respects F4. 92: that I sent her] that I sent, sir Steevens conj. 93: contents] content Mason conj. 98: 'tis] F1 F3 F4. 'its F2. 99: For why, the] For why the Dyce. 105: with] F1 F3 F4. this F2. 139: [Reads] Rowe. 149: would be] F2 F3 F4. should be F1. 151: I will] F1 F2 F3. will I F4. 154: car] cat F3 F4. 169: [Exit] F2. 170: SCENE III. Pope. Enter PRO. and LAUNCE] F2. 189: Soho, soho!] So-hough, Soa hough— F1. 200: Who] F1. Whom F2 F3 F4. 204: Sirrah] om. Pope. 216: vanished] vanish'd Pope. 217: banished—O that's] banish'd: oh, that's Ff. banish'd—O, that is Pope. banished— Val. Oh, that's the news! Pro. From hence, ... Edd. conj. 260: [Exeunt Val. and Pro.] Exeunt. F2. 261: SCENE VI. Pope, by misprint for IV. 263: one knave] one kind of knave Hanmer. one kind Warburton. one in love Staunton conj. 270: [Pulling out a paper] Rowe. 271: cate-log] cat-log Pope. condition] F1 F2 F3. conditions F4. 274: milk;' look you,] milk, look you;' Capell. 276: Enter Speed] F2. 278: master's ship] Theobald. Mastership Ff. 293, 294: om. Farmer conj. 293: Imprimis] Item Halliwell. 304: need not be] F1. need not to be F2 F3 F4. 313: follow] F1. followes F2. follows F3 F4. 315: kissed] Rowe. om. Ff. 322: sleep] slip Collier MS. 325: O ... this] O villaine, that set this F1. O villainy, that set F2 F3. Oh villain! that set F4. O villainy that set this Malone. 342: cannot I] I cannot Steevens. 344: hair] F1. hairs F2 F3 F4. 347: that last] F1. (in some copies only, according to Malone.) that F2 F3 F4. 350: It may be; I'll prove it] Theobald. It may be I'll prove it Ff. 369: of] F1 F2. om. F3 F4. 370: [Exit] Capell. 373: [Exit.] Capell. [Exeunt. Ff.

SCENE II. The same. The DUKE'S palace.

Enter DUKE and THURIO.

Duke. Sir Thurio, fear not but that she will love you, Now Valentine is banish'd from her sight.

Thu. Since his exile she hath despised me most. Forsworn my company, and rail'd at me, That I am desperate of obtaining her. 5

Duke. This weak impress of love is as a figure Trenched in ice, which with an hour's heat Dissolves to water, and doth lose his form. A little time will melt her frozen thoughts, And worthless Valentine shall be forgot. 10


How now, Sir Proteus! Is your countryman, According to our proclamation, gone?

Pro. Gone, my good lord.

Duke. My daughter takes his going grievously.

Pro. A little time, my lord, will kill that grief. 15

Duke. So I believe; but Thurio thinks not so. Proteus, the good conceit I hold of thee— For thou hast shown some sign of good desert— Makes me the better to confer with thee.

Pro. Longer than I prove loyal to your Grace 20 Let me not live to look upon your Grace.

Duke. Thou know'st how willingly I would effect The match between Sir Thurio and my daughter.

Pro. I do, my lord.

Duke. And also, I think, thou art not ignorant 25 How she opposes her against my will.

Pro. She did, my lord, when Valentine was here.

Duke. Ay, and perversely she persevers so. What might we do to make the girl forget The love of Valentine, and love Sir Thurio? 30

Pro. The best way is to slander Valentine With falsehood, cowardice and poor descent, Three things that women highly hold in hate.

Duke. Ay, but she'll think that it is spoke in hate.

Pro. Ay, if his enemy deliver it: 35 Therefore it must with circumstance be spoken By one whom she esteemeth as his friend.

Duke. Then you must undertake to slander him.

Pro. And that, my lord, I shall be loath to do: 'Tis an ill office for a gentleman, 40 Especially against his very friend.

Duke. Where your good word cannot advantage him, Your slander never can endamage him; Therefore the office is indifferent, Being entreated to it by your friend. 45

Pro. You have prevail'd, my lord: if I can do it By ought that I can speak in his dispraise, She shall not long continue love to him. But say this weed her love from Valentine, It follows not that she will love Sir Thurio. 50

Thu. Therefore, as you unwind her love from him, Lest it should ravel and be good to none, You must provide to bottom it on me; Which must be done by praising me as much As you in worth dispraise Sir Valentine. 55

Duke. And, Proteus, we dare trust you in this kind, Because we know, on Valentine's report, You are already Love's firm votary, And cannot soon revolt and change your mind. Upon this warrant shall you have access 60 Where you with Silvia may confer at large; For she is lumpish, heavy, melancholy, And, for your friend's sake, will be glad of you; Where you may temper her by your persuasion To hate young Valentine and love my friend. 65

Pro. As much as I can do, I will effect: But you, Sir Thurio, are not sharp enough; You must lay lime to tangle her desires By wailful sonnets, whose composed rhymes Should be full-fraught with serviceable vows. 70

Duke. Ay, Much is the force of heaven-bred poesy.

Pro. Say that upon the altar of her beauty You sacrifice your tears, your sighs, your heart: Write till your ink be dry, and with your tears 75 Moist it again; and frame some feeling line That may discover such integrity: For Orpheus' lute was strung with poets' sinews; Whose golden touch could soften steel and stones, Make tigers tame, and huge leviathans 80 Forsake unsounded deeps to dance on sands. After your dire-lamenting elegies, Visit by night your lady's chamber-window With some sweet concert; to their instruments Tune a deploring dump: the night's dead silence 85 Will well become such sweet-complaining grievance. This, or else nothing, will inherit her.

Duke. This discipline shows thou hast been in love.

Thu. And thy advice this night I'll put in practice. Therefore, sweet Proteus, my direction-giver, 90 Let us into the city presently To sort some gentlemen well skill'd in music. I have a sonnet that will serve the turn To give the onset to thy good advice.

Duke. About it, gentlemen! 95

Pro. We'll wait upon your Grace till after supper, And afterward determine our proceedings.

Duke. Even now about it! I will pardon you. [Exeunt.

Notes: III, 2.

SCENE II.] SCENE V. Pope. 14: grievously.] grievously? F1. (in some copies only, according to Malone). heavily? F2 F3. heavily. F4. 18: some] sure Collier MS. 19: better] bolder Capell conj. 20: loyal] F1 F3 F4. royall F2. 21: your] F1 F3 F4. you F2. Grace] face Anon. conj. 25: I think] F1. I doe think F2 F3 F4. 28: persevers] F1 F2. perseveres F3 F4. 37: esteemeth] F1. esteemes F2. esteems F3 F4. 49: weed] Ff. wean Rowe. 55: worth] word Capell conj. 64: Where] When Collier MS. 71, 72: Ay, Much] Capell. I, much Ff. Much Pope. 76: line] lines S. Verges conj. 77: such] strict Collier MS. love's S. Verges conj. Malone suggests that a line has been lost to this purport: 'As her obdurate heart may penetrate.' 81: to] F1. and F2 F3 F4. 84: concert] Hanmer. consort Ff. 86: sweet-complaining] Capell. sweet complaining Ff. 94: advice] F2 F3 F4. advise F1.


SCENE I. The frontiers of Mantua. A forest.

Enter certain Outlaws.

First Out. Fellows, stand fast; I see a passenger.

Sec. Out. If there be ten, shrink not, but down with 'em.


Third Out. Stand, sir, and throw us that you have about ye: If not, we'll make you sit, and rifle you.

Speed. Sir, we are undone; these are the villains 5 That all the travellers do fear so much.

Val. My friends,—

First Out. That's not so, sir: we are your enemies.

Sec. Out. Peace! we'll hear him.

Third Out. Ay, by my beard, will we, for he's a proper man. 10

Val. Then know that I have little wealth to lose: A man I am cross'd with adversity; My riches are these poor habiliments, Of which if you should here disfurnish me, You take the sum and substance that I have. 15

Sec. Out. Whither travel you?

Val. To Verona.

First Out. Whence came you?

Val. From Milan.

Third Out. Have you long sojourned there? 20

Val. Some sixteen months, and longer might have stay'd, If crooked fortune had not thwarted me.

First Out. What, were you banish'd thence?

Val. I was.

Sec. Out. For what offence? 25

Val. For that which now torments me to rehearse: I kill'd a man, whose death I much repent; But yet I slew him manfully in fight, Without false vantage or base treachery.

First Out. Why, ne'er repent it, if it were done so. 30 But were you banish'd for so small a fault?

Val. I was, and held me glad of such a doom.

Sec. Out. Have you the tongues?

Val. My youthful travel therein made me happy, Or else I often had been miserable. 35

Third Out. By the bare scalp of Robin Hood's fat friar, This fellow were a king for our wild faction!

First Out. We'll have him. Sirs, a word.

Speed. Master, be one of them; it's an honourable kind of thievery. 40

Val. Peace, villain!

Sec. Out. Tell us this: have you any thing to take to?

Val. Nothing but my fortune.

Third Out. Know, then, that some of us are gentlemen, Such as the fury of ungovern'd youth 45 Thrust from the company of awful men: Myself was from Verona banished For practising to steal away a lady, An heir, and near allied unto the duke.

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