Page images
PDF
EPUB
[ocr errors]

1 Sold. You are undone, captain; all but your scarf, that has a knot on't yet.

T Par. Who cannot be crush'd with a plot?..

i Sold. If you could find out a country where but women were that had received so much shame, you might begin an impudent nation. Fare you well, sir; I am for France too; we shali speak of you there.

[Erit. Par. Yet am I thankful: if my heart were great, 'Twould burst at this: Captain I'll be no more; But I will eat and drink, and sleep as soft As captain shall: simply the thing I am Shall make me live. Who knows himself a braggart, Let him fear this; for it will come to pass, That every braggart shall be found an ass.

. Rust, sword! cool, blushes! and, Parolles, live Safest in shame! being fool'd, by foolery thrive! There's place, and means, for every man alive. I'll after them,

[Exit.

SCENE IV.

FLORENCE,

A ROOM IN THE WIDOW'S HOUSE.

Enter Helena, Widow, and Diana, Hel. That you may well perceive I have not

wrong d you, One of the greatest in the christian world Shall be my surety; 'fore whose throne, 'tis needful, Ere I can perfect mine intents, to kneel: Time was, I did him a desired office,

Dear almost as his life; which gratitude
Through flinty Tartar's bosom would peep forth,
And answer, thanks: I duly am inform’d,
His

grace is at Marseilles; to which place
We have convenient convoy. You must know,
I am supposed dead: the army breaking,
My husband hies him home; where, heaven aiding,
And by the leave of my good lord the king,
We'll be, before our welcome.
Wid.

Gentle madam,
You never had a servant, to whose trust
Your business was more welcome.
Hel.

Nor

you, mistress, Ever a friend, whose thoughts more truly labour To recompence your love; doubt not, but heaven Hath brought me up to be your daughter's dower, As it hath fated her to be

my

motive And helper to a husband. But, О strange men! That can such sweet use make of what they hate, When saucy trusting of the cozen'd thoughts Defiles the pitchy night! so lust doth play With what it loaths, for that which is away: But more of this hereafter:You, Diana, Under my poor instructions yet must suffer Something in my behalf. Dia.

Let death and honesty Go with your impositions, I am yours Upon your will to suffer. . Hel.

Yet, I pray you, But with the word, the time will bring on summer, When briars shall have leaves as well as thorns, And be as sweet as sharp. We must away;

Our waggon is prepar'd, and time revives us: All's well that ends well: still the fine's the crown; Whate'er the course, the end is the renown.

[Exeunt.

SCENE V.

ROUSILLON. A ROOM IN THE COUNTESS'S PALAC E.

Enter Countess, Lafeu, and Clown. Laf. No, no, no, your son was misled with a snipt-taffata fellow there; whose villainous saffron would have made all the unbaked and doughy youth of a nation in his colour: your daughter-in-law had been alive at this hour; and your son here at home, more advanced by the king, than by that red-tail'd humble-bee I speak of.

Count. I would, I had not known him! it was the death of the most virtuous gentlewoman, that ever nature had praise for creating: if she had partaken of my flesh, and cost me the dearest groans of a mother, I could not have owed her a more rooted love.

Laf. 'Twas a good lady, 'twas a good lady: we may pick a thousand sallads, ere we light on such another herb.

Clo. Indeed, sir, she was the sweet-marjoram of the sallad, or, rather the herb of

grace. Laf. They are not sallad-herbs, you knave, they are nose-herbs.

Clo. I am no great Nebuchadnezzar, sir; I have not much skill in grass.

Laf. Whether dost thou profess thyself; a knave, or a fool?

Clo. A fool, sir, at a woman's service, and a knave at a man's.

Laf. Your distinction?

Clo. I would cozen the man of his wife, and do his service.

Laf. So you were a knave at his service, indeed.

Clo. And I would give his wife my bauble, sir, to do her service.

Laf. I will subscribe for thee; thou art both knave and fool. Clo. At

your

service. Laf. No, no, no.

Clo. Why, sir, if I cannot serve you, I can serve as great a prince as you are.

Laf. Who's that: a Frenchman?

Clo. Faith, sir, he has an English name; but his phisnomy is more hotter in France, than there.

Laf. What prince is that?

Clo. The black prince, sir; alias, the prince of darkness; alias, the devil.

Laf. Hold thee, there's my purse: I give thee not this to suggest thee from thy master thou talk'st of; serve him still.

Clo. I am a woodland fellow, sir, that always loved a great fire; and the master I speak of, ever keeps a good fire. But, sure, he is the prince of the world, let his nobility remain in his court. for the house with the narrow gate, which I take to be too little for pomp to enter: some, that humble themselves, may; but the many will be too chill

I am

and tender; and they'll be for the flowery way, that leads to the broad gate, and the great

fire. Laf. Go thy ways, I begin to be a-weary of thee; and I tell thee so before, because I would not fall out with thee. Go thy ways; let my horses be well look'd to, without any tricks.

Clo. If I put any tricks upon 'em, sir, they shall be jades' tricks; which are their own right by the law of nature.

[Exit. Laf. A shrewd knave, and an unhappy.

Count. So he is. My lord, that's gone, made himself much sport out of him: by his authority he remains here, which he thinks is a patent for his sauciness; and, indeed, he has no pace, but runs where he will.

Laf. I like him well; 'tis not amiss; and I was about to tell you, since I heard of the good lady's death, and that my lord your son was upon bis return home, I moved the king my master, to speak in the behalf of my daughter; which, in the minority of them both, his majesty, out of a self-gracious remembrance, did first propose: his highness hath promised me to do it: and, to stop up the displeasure he hath conceived against your son, there is no fitter matter. How does your ladyship like it?

Count. With very much content, my lord, and I wish it happily effected.

Laf. His highness comes post from Marseilles, of as able body as when he number'd thirty; he will be here to-morrow, or I am deceived by him that in such intelligence hath seldom fail'd.

Count. It rejoices me, that I hope I shall see him

« PreviousContinue »