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To him one of the other twins was bound,
Duke. Nay, forward, old man, do not break off so; For we may pity, though not pardon thee.
Æge. O, had the gods done so, I had not now Worthily term'd them merciless to us! For, ere the ships could meet by twice five leagues, We were encounter'd by a mighty rock; Which being violently borne upon, Our helpful ship was splitted in the midst, So that, in this unjust divorce of us, Fortune had left to both of us alike What to delight in, what to sorrow for. Her part, poor soul! seeming as burdened With lesser weight, but not with lesser woe, Was carried with more speed before the wind; And in our sight they three were taken up By fishermen of Corinth, as we thought. At length, another ship had seiz'd on us;
And, knowing whom it was their hap to save, Gave helpful welcome to their shipwreck'd guests ; And would have reft 4 the fishers of their
prey, Had not their bark been very slow of sail, And therefore homeward did they bend their course. Thus have you heard me sever'd from my bliss ; That by misfortunes was my life prolong'd, To tell sad stories of my own mishaps.
Duke. And, for the sake of them thou sorrowest for, Do me the favour to dilate at full What hath befall’n of them, and thee, till now.
Æge. My youngest boy, and yet my eldest care, At eighteen years became inquisitive After his brother; and importun'd me, That his attendant, (for his case was like, Reft of his brother, but retain'd his name,) Might bear him company in the quest of hiin : Whom whilst I labour'd of a love to see, I hazarded the loss of whom I lov'd. Five summers have I spent in furthest Greece, Roaming cleans through the bounds of Asia, And, coasting homeward, came to Ephesus; Hopeless to find, yet loth to leave unsought, Or that, or any place that harbours men. But here must end the story of my life; And happy were I in my timely death, Could all my travels warrant me they live.
Duke. Hapless Ægeon, whom the fates have mark'd To bear the extremity of dire mishap ! Now, trust me, were it not against our laws, Against my crown, my oath, my dignity,
Which princes, would they, may not disannul,
Gaol. I will, my lord.
Æge. Hopeless, and helpless, doth Ægeon wend," But to procrastinate his lifeless end. [Exeunt.
Enter ANTIPHOLUS and DROMI0 of Syracuse, and
Ant. S. Go bear it to the Centaur, where we host,
And stay there, Dromio, till I come to thee.
your word, And go indeed, having so good a mean.
[Exit Dro. s.
Mer. I am invited, sir, to certain merchants,
you, I'll meet with you upon the mart, 9
go lose myself, And wander up and down, to view the city. Mer. Sir, I commend you to your own content.
[Exit Merchant, Ant. S. He that commends me to mine own con
Unseen, inquisitive, confounds himself:
Enter DROMIO of Ephesus.
have no stomach;
last, To pay the saddler for
mistress' crupper ;The saddler had it, sir, I kept it not.
Ant. S. I am not in a sportive humour now?
Dro. E. I pray you, jest, sir, as you sit at dinner :