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1 Sold. Well, that's set down.
Par. I humbly thank you, sir: a truth's a truth, the rogues are marvellous poor.
i Sold. Demand of him, of what strength they are a-fout. What say you to that?
Par. By my troth, sir, if I were to live this present hour, I will tell true. Let me see : Spurio a hundred and fifty, Sebastian so many, Corambus so many, Jaques so many; Guiltian, Cosmo, Lodowick, and Gratii, two hundred fifty each: mine own company, Chitopher, Vaumond, Bentii, two hundred and fifty each : so that the muster-file, rotten and sound, upon my life, amounts not to fifteen thousand poll; half of which dare not shake the snow from off their cassocks, lest they shake themselves to pieces.
Ber. What shall be done to him:
1 Lord. Nothing, but let him have thanks. Demand of him my conditions, and what credit I have with the duke.
1 Sold. Well, that's set down. You shall demand of him, whether one Captain Dumain be i the camp, à Frenchman; what his reputation is with the duke, what his valour, honesty, and expertness in wars ; or whether he thinks, it were not possible, with wellweighing sums of gold, to corrupt him to a revolt. What say you to this? what do you know of it?
Par. I beseech you, let me answer to the particular of the intergatories:' Demand them singly:
I Sold. Do you know this captain Dumain?
if I were to live this present hour, &c.] Perhaps we should read :-if I were to live but this present hour. STEEVENS.
off their cassocks,] Cassock signifies a horseman's loose coat, and is used in that sense by the writers of the age of Shak
my conditions,] i. e. my disposition and character.
in Paris, from whence he was whipped for getting the Sheriff's fool with child ; a dumb innocent, that could not say him, nay.
[Dumain lifts up his hand in anger. Ber. Nay, by your leave, hold your hands; though I know, his brains are forfeit to the next tile that falls.?
1 Sold. Well, is this captain in the duke of Florence's camp?
Par. Upon my knowledge, he is, and lousy.
1 Lord. Nay, look not so upon me; we shall hear of your lordship anon.
1 Sold. What is his reputation with the duke?
Par. The duke knows him for no other but a poor officer of mine; and writ to me this other day, to turn him out o' the band : I think, I have his letter in my pocket.
1 Sold. Marry, we'll search.
Par. In good sadness, I do not know ; either it is there, or it is upon a file, with the duke's other letters, in my tent.
1 Sold. Here 'tis; here's a paper. Shall I read it to you?
Par. I do not know, if it be it, or no. Ber. Our interpreter does it well. i Lord. Excellently. 1 Sold. Dian. The count's a fool, and full of gold,
Par. That is not the duke's letter, sir; that is an advertisement to a proper maid in Florence, one Diana, to take heed of the allurement of one count Rousillon, a foolish idle boy, but, for all that, very ruttish : I pray you, sir, put it up again. 1 Sold. Nay, I'll read it first, by your favour.
though I know, his brains are forfeit to the next tile that falls.] In Lucian's Contemplantes, Mercury makes Charon remark a rnan that was killed by the falling of a tile upon his head, whilst he was in the act of puiting off an engagement to the next day. VOL. III.
• Par. My meaning in't, I protest, was very honest in the behalf of the maid : for I knew the young count to be a dangerous and lascivious boy ; who is a whale to virginity, and devours up all the fry it finds.
Ber. Damnable, both sides rogue !
and take it ; After he scores, he never pays the score : Half won, is match well made ; match, and well
make it ;3
PAROLLES. Ber. He shall be whipped through the army, with this rhyme in his forehead.
2 Lord. This is your devoted friend, sir, the manifold linguist, and the armipotent soldier.
Ber. I could endure any thing before but a cat, and now he's a cat to me.
1 Sold. I perceive, sir, by the general's looks, we shall be fain to hang you.
Par. My life, sir, in any case: not that I am afraid to die; but that, my offences being many, I would repent out the remainder of nature: let me · live, sir, in a dungeon, i’the stocks, or any where, so I may live.
1 Sold. We'll see what may be done, so you con
3 Half won, is match well made ; match, and well make it ;] The meaning is, “ A match well made, iş half won; make your match, therefore, but make it well.”
foss freely; therefore, once more to this captain Dumain : You have answered to his reputation with the duke, and to his valour: What is his honesty?
Par. He will steal, sir, an egg out of a cloister ;4 for rapes and ravishments he parallels Nessus. He professes not keeping of oaths; in breaking them, he is stronger than Hercules. He will lie, sir, with such volubility, that you would think truth were a fool: drunkenness is his best virtue; for he will be swine-drunk; and in his sleep he does little harm, save to his bed-clothes about him; but they know his conditions, and lay him in straw. I have but little more to say, sir, of his honesty: he has every thing that an honest man should not have; what an honest man should have, he has nothing.
1 Lord. I begin to love him for this.
Ber. For this description of thine honesty ? A pox upon him for me, he is more and more a cat.
i Sold. What say you to liis expertness in war?
Par. Faith, sir, he has led the drum before the English tragedians,--to belie him, I will not,-and more of his soldiership I know not; except, in that country, he had the honour to be the officer at a place there call’d Mile-end, to instruct for the doubling of files: I would do the man what honour I can, but of this I am not certain.
i Lord. He hath out-villained villainy so far, that the rarity redeems him.
Ber. A pox on him! he's a cat still.
1 Sold. His qualities being at this poor price, I need not ask you, if gold will corrupt him to revolt.
an egg out of a cloister ;] He will steal ever trifling, from any place, however holy. Rubbing the spital,
any thing, howis a common phrase, of the like import.
Par. Sir, for a quart d'ecus he will sell the feesimple of his salvation, the inheritance of it; and cut the entail from all remainders, and a perpetual succession for it perpetually.
1 Sold. What's his brother, the other captain Dumain ?
2 Lord. Why does he ask him of me?" 1 Sold. What's he?
Par. E'en a crow of the same nest; not altogether so great as the first in goodness, but greater a great deal in evil. He excels his brother for a coward, yet his brother is reputed one of the best that is: In a retreat he out-runs any lackey; marry, in coming on he has the cramp.
1 Sold. If your life be saved, will you undertake to betray the Florentine?
Par. Ay, and the captain of his horse, count Rousillon.
1 Sold. I'll whisper with the general, and know his pleasure.
Par. I'll no more drumming; a plague of all drums! Only to seem to deserve well, and to beguile the supposition of that lascivious young boy the count, have I run into this danger: Yet, who would have suspected an ambush where I was taken?
[Aside. 1 Sold. There is no remedy, sir, but you must die: the general says, you, that have so traitorously discovered the secrets of your army, and made such pestiferous reports of men very nobly held, can
- for a quart d'ecu -] The fourth part of the smaller French crown; about eight-pence of our money.
6 Why does he ask him of me?] This is nature. Every man is, on such occasions, more willing to hear his neighbour's character than his own. Johnson.
to beguile the supposition - ] That is, to deceive the opinion, to make the Count think me a man that eserves well.