Page images
PDF
EPUB

Think'st thou, I jest? Hold, take thou that, and that. And make a common of my serious hours.

[Beating him. When the sun shines let foolish goats make sport, Dro. S. Hold, sir, for God's sake! now your jest But creep in crannies when he hides his beams. is earnest :

If you will jest with me, know my aspect, Upon what bargain do you give it me?

And fashion your demeanour to my looks, Ant. S. Because that I familiarly sometimes Or I will beat this method in your sconce. Do use you for my fool, and chat with you,

Dro. S. Sconce, call you it? so you would leave Your sauciness will jest upon my love,

battering, I had rather have it a head : an you use

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

these blows long, I must get a sconce for my head, Dro. S. Lest it make you choleric; and purand insconce it too; or else I shall seek my wit in chase me another dry basting. my shoulders. But, I pray, sir, why am I beaten? Ant. S. Well, sir, learn to jest in good time: Ant. S. Dost thou not know?

there's a time for all things. Dro. S. Nothing, sir ; but that I am beaten. Dro. S. I durst have denied that, before you Ant. S. Shall I tell you why ?

were so choleric. Dro. $. Ay, sir, and wherefore; for, they say, Ant. S. By what rule, sir ? every why hath a wherefore.

Dro. S. Marry, sir, by a rule as plain as the plain Ant. S. Why, first,-for flouting me; and then, bald pate of father Time himself. wherefore,—for urging it the second time to me. Ant. S. Let's hear it. Dro. S. Was there ever any man thus beaten out Dro. S. There's no time for a man to recover of season,

his hair that grows bald by nature. When, in the why, and the wherefore, is neither Ant. S. May he not do it by fine and recovery ? rhyme nor reason ?

Dro. S. Yes, to pay a fine for a periwig, and Well, sir, I thank you.

recover the lost hair of another man. Ant. S. Thank me, sir ? for what?

Ant. S. Why is Time such a niggard of hair, Dro. S. Marry, sir, for this something, that you | being, as it is, so plentiful an excrement? gave me for nothing.

Dro. S. Because it is a blessing that he bestows Ant. S. I'll make you amends next, to give you on beasts : and what he hath scanted men in hair, nothing for something. But say, sir, is it dinner- he hath given them in wit. time?

Ant. S. Why, but there's many a man hath more Dro. S. No, sir : I think, the meat wants that I hair than wit. have.

Dro. S. Not a man of those, but he hath the Ant. S. In good time, sir; what's that?

wit to lose his hair. Dro. S. Basting.

Ant. S. Why, thou didst conclude hairy men Ant. S. Well, sir, then 'twill be dry.

plain dealers, without wit. Dro. S. If it be, sir, I pray you eat none of it. Dro. S. The plainer dealer, the sooner lost: yet Ant. S. Your reason?

he loseth it in a kind of jollity.

Ant. S. For what reason ?
Dro. S. For two; and sound ones too.
Ant. S. Nay, not sound, I pray you.
Dro. S. Sure ones then.
Ant. S. Nay, not sure, in a thing falsing.
Dro. S. Certain ones then.
Ant. S. Name them.

Dro. S. The one, to save the money that he spends in 'tiring; the other, that at dinner they should not drop in his porridge.

Ant. S. You would all this time have proved, there is no time for all things.

Dro. S. Marry, and did, sir ; namely, e'en no time to recover hair lost by nature.

Ant. S. But your reason was not substantial, why there is no time to recover.

Dro. S. Thus I mend it : Time himself is bald, and therefore, to the world's end, will have bald followers.

Ant. S. I knew, 'twould be a bald conclusion. But soft! who wafts us yonder?

Enter ADRIANA, and LUCIANA. Adr. Ay, ay, Antipholus, look strange, and frown: Sone other mistress hath thy sweet aspects, I am not Adriana, nor thy wife. The time was once, when thou unurg'd would'st That never words were music to thine ear, That never object pleasing in thine eye, That never touch well welcome to thy hand, That never meat sweet-savour'd in thy taste, Unless I spake, or look’d, or touch'd, or carv'd to

thee. How comes it now, my husband, O! how comes it, That thou art then estranged from thyself? Thyself I call it, being strange to me, That, undividable, incorporate, Am better than thy dear self's better part.

Ah, do not tear away thyself from me ;
For know, my love, as easy may'st thou fall
A drop of water in the breaking gulph,
And take unmingled thence that drop again,
Without addition or diminishing,
As take from me thyself, and not me too.
How dearly would it touch thee to the quick,
Should'st thou but hear I were licentious,
And that this body, consecrate to thee,
By ruffian lust should be contaminate!
Would'st thou not spit at me, and spurn at me,
And hurl the name of husband in my face,
And tear the stain'd skin off my harlot-brow,
And from my false hand cut the wedding-ring,
And break it with a deep divorcing vow?
I know thou can'st; and therefore, see, thou do it,
I am possess'd with an adulterate blot ;
My blood is 'mingled with the crime of lust :
For, if we two be one, and thou play false,
I do digest the poison of thy flesh,
Being strumpeted by thy contagion.
Keep then fair league and truce

with thy true bed ; I live disstain'd, thou undishonoured. Ant. S. Plead you to me, fair dame? I know

you not. In Ephesus I am but two hours old, As strange unto your town, as to your talk; Who, every word by all my wit being scann'd, Want wit in all one word to understand. Luc. Fie, brother: how the world is chang’d with

you !
When were you wont to use my sister thus ?
She sent for you by Dromio home to dinner.

Ant. S. By Dromio ?
Dro. S. By me ?
Adr. By thee; and this thou didst return from

him,-
That he did buffet thee, and, in his blows
Denied my house for his, me for his wife.

15

VOW

[graphic][ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small]

Ant. S. Did you converse, sir, with this gentle- If we obey them not, this will ensue, woman?

They'll suck our breath, or pinch us black and blue. What is the course and drift of your compact ? Luc. Why prat'st thou to thyself, and answer'st Dro. S. I, sir? I never saw her till this time.

not? Ant. S. Villain, thou liest ; for even her very Dromio, thou Dromio, thou snail, thou slug, thou words

sot! Didst thou deliver to me on the mart.

Dro. S. I am transformed, master, am I not ? Dro. S. I never spake with her in all my life. Ant. S. I think thou art, in mind, and so am I. Ant. S. How can she thus then call us by our Dro. S. Nay, master, both in mind and in my names,

shape. Unless it be by inspiration ?

Ant. S. Thou hast thine own form. Adr. How ill agrees it with your gravity

Dro. S.

No, I am an ape. To counterfeit thus grossly with your slave,

Luc. If thou art chang'd to aught, 'tis to an ass. Abetting him to thwart me in my mood !

Dro. S. 'Tis true; she rides me, and I long for Be it my wrong, you are from me exempt,

grass. But wrong not that wrong with a more contempt. 'Tis so, I am an ass; else it could never be, Come, I will fasten on this sleeve of thine:

But I should know her, as well as she knows me. Thou art an elm, my husband, I a vine,

Adr. Come, come; no longer will I be a fool, Whose weakness, married to thy stronger state, To put the finger in the eye and weep, Makes me with thy strength to communicate: Whilst man and master laugh my woes to scorn. If aught possess thee from me, it is dross,

Come, sir, to dinner.- Dromio, keep the gate.Usurping ivy, briar, or idle moss ;

Husband, I'll dine above with you to-day, Who, all for want of pruning, with intrusion And shrive you of a thousand idle pranks.Infect thy sap, and live on thy confusion.

Sirrah, if any ask you for your master, Ant. $. To me she speaks; she moves me for Say, he dines forth, and let no creature enter.her theme !

Come, sister.— Dromio, play the porter well. What, was I married to her in my dream,

Ant. S. Am I in earth, in heaven, or in hell ? Or sleep I now, and think I hear all this?

Sleeping or waking? mad, or well-advisid ? What error drives our eyes and ears amiss ? Known unto these, and to myself disguis'd ? Until I know this sure uncertainty,

I'll say as they say, and persever so, I'll entertain the offer'd fallacy:

And in this mist, at all adventures, go. Luc. Dromio, go bid the servant spread for dinner. Dro. S. Master, shall I be porter at the gate ?

Dro. S. O, for my beads! I cross me for a sinner. Adr. Ay; and let none enter, lest I break your pate. This is the fairy land: 0, spite of spites!

Luc. Come, come, Antipholus; we dine too late. We talk with goblins, owls, and elvish sprites.

[Exeunt.

[ocr errors]

ass.

SCENE I.-The Same.

If the skin were parchment, and the blows you gave

were ink, Enter Antipholus of Ephesus, Dromio of Ephesus,

Your own hand-writing would tell you what I ANGELO, and BALTHAZAR.

think. Ant. E. Good signior Angelo, you must excuse Ant. E. I think, thou art an ass. us all;

Dro. E.

Marry, so it doth appear. My wife is shrewish, when I keep not hours. By the wrongs I suffer, and the blows I bear. Say, that I linger'd with you at your shop

I should kick, being kick'd; and being at that pass. To see the making of her carkanet,

You would keep from my heels, and beware of an And that to-morrow you will bring it home; But here's a villain, that would face me down Ant. E. You are sad, signior Balthazar: pray He met me on the mart, and that I beat him,

God, our cheer And charg'd him with a thousand marks in gold; May answer my good-will, and your good welcome And that I did deny my wife and house.

here. Thou drunkard, thou, what did'st thou mean by Bal. I hold your dainties cheap, sir, and your this?

welcome dear. Dro. E. Say what you will, sir; but I know what Ant. E. O, signior Balthazar, either at flesh or I know

fish, That you beat me at the mart, I have your hand to A table-full of welcome makes scarce one dainty show:

dish.

Bal. Good meat, sir, is common; that every churl Dro. S. Right, sir : I'll tell you when, an you'll affords.

tell me wherefore. Ant. E. And welcome more common, for that's Ant. E. Wherefore ? for my dinner: I have not nothing but words.

din'd to-day Bal. Small cheer and great welcome makes a Dro. S. Nor to-day here you must not, come merry feast.

again when you may, Ant. E. Ay, to a niggardly host, and more spar- Ant. E. What art thou that keep'st me out from ing guest :

the house I owe ? But though my cates be mean, take them in good Dro. S. The porter for this time, sir; and my part;

name is Dromio. Better cheer may you have, but not with better Dro. E. O villain! thou hast stolen both mine heart.

office and my name : But soft! my door is lock’d. Go bid them let us in. The one ne'er got me credit, the other mickle Dro. E. Maud, Bridget, Marian, Cicely, Gillian,

blame. Gin'!

If thou had'st been Dromio to-day in my place, Dro. S. [Within.] Mome, malt-horse, capon, cox- Thou would'st have chang'd thy face for a name, comb, idiot, patch!

or thy name for an ass. Either get thee from the door, or sit down at the Luce. [Within.) What a coil is there Dromio : hatch.

who are those at the gate ? Dost thou conjure for wenches, that thou call'st for Dro. E. Let my master in, Luce. such store,

Luce.

Faith no; he comes too late ; When one is one too many ? Go, get thee from And so tell your master. the door.

Dro. E.

O Lord! I must laugh :Dro. E. What patch is made our porter ?–My Have at you with a proverb.—Shall I set in my master stays in the street.

staff ? Dro. S. Let him walk from whence he came, lest Luce. Have at you with another: that's,—when? he catch cold on 's feet.

can you tell ? Ant. E. Who talks within there? ho! open the Dro. S. If thy name be called Luce, Luce, thou door.

bast answer'd him well.

[graphic][subsumed][ocr errors]

Ant. E. Do you hear, you minion ? you'll let us

in, I hope ? Luce. I thought to have ask'd you. Dro. S.

And you said, no. Dro. E. So; come, help! well struck; there was

blow for blow.
Ant. E. Thou baggage, let me in.
Luce.

Can you tell for whose sake?
Dro. E. Master, knock the door hard.
Luce.

Let him knock till it ache.
Ant. E. You'll cry for this, minion, if I beat the

door down.

Luce. What needs all that, and a pair of stocks

in the town? Adr. [Within.) Who is that at the door, that

keeps all this noise ? Dro. S. By my troth, your town is troubled with

unruly boys. Ant. E. Are you there, wife ? you might have

come before. Adr. Your wife, sir knave? go, get you from

the door. Dro. E. If you went in pain, master, this kpave would go sore.

the gate.

Ang. Here is neither cheer, sir, nor welcome : Herein you war against your reputation,
we would fain have either.

And draw within the compass of suspect
Bal. In debating which was best, we shall part Th' unviolated honour of your wife.
with neither.

Once this,-Your long experience of her wisdom, Dro. E. They stand at the door, master: bid Her sober virtue, years, and modesty, them welcome hither.

Plead on her part some cause to you unknown; Ant. E. There is something in the wind, that we And doubt not, sir, but she will well excuse cannot get in.

Why at this time the doors are made against you. Dro. E. You would say so, master, if your gar- Be ruld by me : depart in patience, ments were thin.

And let us to the Tiger all to dinner; Your cake bere is warm within ; you stand here And about evening come yourself alone in the cold :

To know the reason of this strange restraint.
It would make a man mad as a buck to be so bought If by strong hand you offer to break in,
and sold.

Now in the stirring passage of the day,
Ant. E. Go, fetch me something: I'll break ope A vulgar comment will be made of it;

And that supposed by the common route,
Dro. S. Break any breaking here, and I'll break Against your yet ungalled estimation,
your knave's pate.

That may with foul intrusion enter in, Dro. E. A man may break a word with you, sir, And dwell upon your grave when you are dead: and words are but wind;

For slander lives upon succession, Ay, and break it in your face, so he break it not For ever housed, where it gets possession. behind.

Ant. E. You have prevailid: I will depart in quiet, Dro. S. It seems, thou want'st breaking. Out And, in despite of mirth, mean to be merry. upon thee, hind!

I know a wench of excellent discourse, Dro. E. Here's too much out upon thee! I pray Pretty and witty; wild, and yet too, gentle ; thee, let me in.

There will we dine: this woman that I mean,
Dro. S. Ay, when fowls have no feathers, and My wife (but, I protest, without desert)
fish have no fin.

Hath oftentimes upbraided me withal :
Ant. E. Well, I'll break in. Go, borrow me a To her will we to dinner.—Get you home,

And fetch the chain; by this, I know, 'tis made:
Dro. E. A crow without feather? master, mean Bring it, I pray you, to the Porcupine;

For there's the house. That chain will I bestow For a fish without a fin, there's a fowl without a (Be it for nothing but to spite my wife) feather.

Upon mine hostess there. Good sir, make haste. If a crow help us in, sirrah, we'll pluck a crow to- Since mine own doors refuse to entertain me, gether.

I'll knock elsewhere, to see if they'll disdain me. Ant. E. Go, get thee gone : fetch me an iron Ang. I'll meet you at that place, some hour hence.

Ant. E. Do so. This jest shall cost me some Bal. Have patience, sir; 0 ! let it not be so:

[Ereunt. 18

crow.

[ocr errors]

you so ?

crow.

expense.

[graphic][ocr errors][merged small]
« PreviousContinue »