Page images

Isab. Course of justice !
Ang. And the will speak most bitterly, and strange. (28)

Isab. Most strange, but yet most cruly, will I speak;
That Angelo's forsworn: is it not strange?
That Angelo's a murth’rer: is't not strange?
Thåt Angelo is an adult'rous thief,
An hypocrite, a virgin-violater:
Is it not strange and strange?

Duke. Nay, it is ten times strange.

Isab. It is not truer he is Angelo,
Than this is all as true, as it is strange:
Nay, it is ten times true; for truth is truth
To th’end of reckoning.

Duke. Away with her: poor soul,
She speaks this in th’infirmity of sense.

Isab. O Prince, Iconjure thee, as thou believ'st
There is another comfort than this world,
That thou neglect me not; with that opinion
That I am touch'd with madness. Make not impoffible
That, which but seems unlike; 'tis not impossible,
But one, the wicked'st caitiff on the ground,
May seem as shy, as grave, as just, as absolute,
As Angelo; even so may Angelo,
In all his dressings, caracts, titles, forms,
Be an arch-villain : believe it, royal Prince,
If he be less, he's nothing; but he's more,
Had I more name for badness.

Duke. By mine honesty,
If the be mad, as I believe no other,
Her madness hath the oddest frame of sense
Such a dependency of thing on thing,
As e'er I heard in madness.

Ifab. Gracious Duke, (28) And he will speak most bitterly.) Thus is the Verse left imperfect by Mr. Rowe and Mr. Pope: tho' the old Copies all fill it up, as I have done. I have restor’d an infinite Number of such Passage tacitly from the first Impressions : but I thought proper to take notice, once for all, here, that as Mr. Pope follows Mr. Rowe's Edition in his Errors and Omissions, it gives great Suspicion, notwithstanding the pretended Collation of Copies, that Mr. Pope, for the Generality', took Mr. Rowe's Edition as his Guide.


Harp not on That; nor do not banish reason
For inequality ; but let your reason serve
To make the truth appear, where it seems hid;
Not hide the false, fet ms true.

Duke. Many, that are not mad,
Have, sure, more lack of reason.
What would you say?

Isab. I am the fifter of one Claudio,
Condemn'd upon the Act of fornication
To lose his head ; condemn'd by Angelo :
1, in probation of a sisterhood,
Was sent to by my brother; one Lucio,
As then the messenger,

Lucio. That's I, an't like your Grace:
I came to her from Claudio, and desir'd her
To try her gracious fortune with lord Angelo,
For her poor brother's Pardon.

Isab. That's he, indeed.
Duke. You were not bid to speak.

[To Lucio Lucio. No, my good lord, nor with'd to hold my

peace. Duke. I wish you now then ; Pray you, take note of it: and when


have A buấness for your self, pray heav'n, you

Be perfe&t.

Lucio. I warrant your Honour.
Duke. The warrant's for your self; take heed to't.
Isab. This gentleman told somewhat of my tale.
Lucio. Right.

Duke. It may be right, but you are in the wrong
To speak before your time. Proceed.

Isab. I went
To this pernicious caitiff Deputy.

Duke. That's somewhat madly spoken.

Tfab. Pardon it:
The phrase is to the matter.

Duke. Mended again: the matter; - - proceed.

Ifab. In brief ; (to set the needless Process by,
How I persuaded, how I pray'd and kneelid,
How he repelld me, and how I reply'd ;



[ocr errors]

For this was of much length) the vile conclusion
I now begin with grief and shame to utter.
He would not, but by gift of my chaste body
To his concupiscent intemp’ráte lust,
Release my brother; and after much debatement,
My fifterly Remorse confutes mine Honour,
And I did yield to him

: But the next morn betimes, , His purpose surfeiting, he sends a Warrant For my poor brother's head.

Duke. This is most likely!
Ifab. Oh, that it were as like, as it is true !
Duke. By heav'n, fond wretch, thou know'st not

what thou speak'st;
Or else thou art suborn'd against his honour
In hateful practice. First, his integrity
Stands without blemish; 'next, it imports no reason,
Thar with such vehemence he should pursue
Faults proper to himself: if he had so offended,
He would have weigh'd thy brother by himself,
And not have cut him off. Some one hath set you on;
Confess the truth, and say, by whose advice
Thou cam'ft here to complain.

Isab. And is this all?
Then, oh, you blessed ministers above !
Keep me in patience; and with ripen'd time,
Unfold, the evil which is here wrapt up
In countenance: Heav'n fhield your Grace from woe,
As I, thus wrong'd, hence unbelieved go.

Duke. I know you'd fain be gone. An Officer ;
To prison with her. Shall we thus permit
A blasting and a scandalous breath to fall
On him so near us? this needs must be a practice.
Who knew of your intent, and coming hither?

Isab. One that I would were here, Friar Lodowick.

Duke. A ghostly father, belike: Who knows that Lodowick?

Lucio. My lord, I know him ; 'tis a modling Friar; I do not like the man; had he been Lay, my lord, For certain words he fpake against your Grace In your retirement, I had swing'd him foundly.


Duke. Words against me? this is a good Friar, belike; And to set on this wretched woman here Against our Substitute ! let this Friar be found.

Lucio. But yesternight, my lord, she and that Friar,
I saw them at the prison: a sawcy Friar,
A very scurvy fellow.

Peter. Blessed be your royal Grace !
I have stood by, my lord, and I have heard
Your royal ear abus’d. First, hath this woman
Moft wrongfully accus'd your Substitute ;
Who is as free from touch or soil with her,
As the from one ungot.

Duke. We did believe no less.
Know you that Friar Lodowick, which she speaks of?

Peter. I know him for a man divine and holy;
Not scurvy, nor a temporary medler,
As he's reported by this gentleman;
And, on my Trust, a man that never yet
Did, as he vouches, misreport your Grace.

Lucio. My lord, most villanously; believe it.

Peter. Well; he in time may come to clear himself,
But at this instant he is fick, my lord,
Of a strange fever. On his meer request,
(Being come to knowledge that there was Complaint
Intended 'gainst lord Angelo) came I hither
To speak as from his mouth, what he doth know
Is true, and false; and what he with his oath
By all Probation will make up full clear,
Whenever he's conven'd. First, for this woman;
To justifie this worthy Nobléman,
So vulgarly and personally accus’d,
Her shall you hear disproved to her eyes,
'Till she her self confess it.

Duke. Good Friar, let's hear it.
Do you not smile at this, lord Angelo ?
O heav'n! the vanity of wretched fools!
Give us some seats; come, Cousin Angelo, (29)


Сс 2


come, cousin Angelo, In this I'll be impartial; be you judga

of 있


In this I will be partial : be you Judge
Of your own Cause. Is this the witness, Friar?

[Ifabella is carried off, guarded.

Enter Mariana veil'd.
First, let her shew her face; and after, speak.

Mari. Pardon, my lord, I will not shew my face,
Until my husband bid me.

Duke. What, are you marry'd ?
Mari. No, my lord.
Duke. Are you a maid?
Mari. No, my lord.
Duke. A widow then?
Mari. Neither, my lord.

Duke. Why, are you nothing then? neither maid, widow, nor wife?

Lució. My lord, she may be a punk; for many of them are neither maid, widow, nor wife.

Duke. Silence that fellow: I would, he had some cause to prattle for himself.

Lucio. Well, my lord.

Mari. My lord, I do confess, I ne'er was marry’d;'
And, I confess besides, I am no maid;

I've known my husband; yet my husband knows not,
That ever he knew me.

Lucio. He was drunk then, my lord; it can be no better.

Duke. For the benefit, of filence, would thou wert so too.

Lucio. Well, my lord.
Duke. This is no witness for lord Angelo.

Of your own Cause.] Surely, this Duke had odd Notions of
Impartiality; to profess it, and then commit the Decision of a Cause to the
Person accus`d of being the Criminal. He talks much more rationaily
on this Affair, when he speaks in the Character of the Friar.

- The Duke's unjust,
Thus to retort your manifest Appeal ;
And put your Trial in the Villain's mouth,

Which here you come t'accuse.
I think, there needs no stronger Authority to convince, that the post
muit have wrote as I have corrected;
In this I will be partial;

« PreviousContinue »