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Isab. O, pardon me, my lord; it oft falls out,
Ang. We are all frail.
Else let my brother die,
Nay, women are frail too. Isab. Ay, as the glasses where they view themselves; Which are as easy broke as they make forms. Women !--Help heaven! men their creation mar In profiting by them". Nay, call us ten times frail ; For we are soft as our complexions are, And credulous to false prints. Ang.
I think it well : And from this testimony of your own sex, (Since, I suppose, we are made to be no stronger Than faults may shake our frames,) let me be bold;I do arrest your words; Be that you are, That is, a woman; if you be more, you're none; If you be one, (as you are well express'd By all external warrants;) show it now, By putting on the destin'd livery.
Isab. I have no tongue but one : gentle my lord, Let me intreat you speak the former language.
Ang. Plainly conceive, I love you.
Isab. My brother did love Juliet; and you tell me, That he shall die for it. VOL. II.
Ang. He shall not, Isabel, if you give me love.
Isab. I know, your virtue hath a licence in't,
Believe me, on mine honour,
Isab. Ha! little honour to be much believ'd, And most pernicious purpose !-Seeming, seeming! I will proclaim thee, Angelo; look for't : Sign me a present pardon for my brother, Or, with an out-stretch'd throat, I'll tell the world Aloud, what man thou art. Ang.
Who will believe thee, Isabel ? My unsoil'd name, the austereness of my life, My vouch against you, and my place i'the state, Will so your accusation over-weigh, That you
shall stifle in your own report, And smell of calumny. I have begun; And now I give my sensual race the rein: Fit thy consent to my sharp appetite; Lay by all nicety, and prolixious blushes, That banish what they sue for; redeem thy brother By yielding up thy body to my will; Or else he must not only die the death, But thy unkindness shall his death draw out To lingering sufferance: answer me to-morrow, Or, by the affection that now guides me most, I'll prove a tyrant to him: As for you, Say what you can, my false o'erweighs your true.
Isab. To whom should I complain? Did I tell
this, Who would believe me? O perilous mouths, That bear in them one and the self-same tongue, Either of condemnation or approof! Bidding the law make court'sy to their will; Hooking both right and wrong to the appetite, To follow, as it draws ! I'll to my brother : Though he hath fallen by prompture 30 of the blood, Yet hath he in him such a mind of honour, That had he twenty heads to tender down On twenty bloody blocks, he'd yield them up, Before his sister should her body stoop To such abhorrid pollution. Then Isabel, live chaste, and, brother, die : More than our brother is our chastity. I'll tell him yet of Angelo's request, And fit his mind to death, for his soul's rest. [Exit.
ACT III. SCENE I.
A Room in the Prison.
Enter Duke, CLAUDIO, and Provost.
Duke. Be absolute for death ; either death, or life,
And what thou hast, forget'st: Thou art not certain ;
I humbly thank you.
Isab. What, ho! Peace here ; grace and good com
Prod. Who's there? come in : the wish deserves a
welcome. Duke. Dear sir, ere long I'U visit you again.