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From son to son, some four or five descents
Since the first father wore it: this ring he holds
In most rich choice; yet, in his idle fire,
To buy his will, it would not seem too dear,
Howe'er repented after.
Wid.

Now I see
The bottom of your purpose.

Hel. You see it lawful then. It is no more,
But that your daughter, ere she seems as won,
Desires this ring; appoints him an encounter ;
In fine, delivers me to fill the time,
Herself most chastely absent: after this,
To marry her, I'll add three thousand crowns
To what is past already.
Wid.

I have yielded.
Instruct my daughter how she shall persever,
That time and place, with this deceit so lawful,
May prove coherent. Every night he comes
With musics of all sorts, and songs composed
To her unworthiness. It nothing steads us
To chide him from our eaves; for he persists,
As if his life lay on't.
Hel.

Why, then, to-night
Let us assay our plot; which, if it speed,
Is wicked meaning in a lawful deed,
And lawful meaning in a lawful act;
Where both not sin, and yet a sinful fact.
But let's about it.

[Exeunt.

1,This gingling riddle may be thus briefly explained. Bertram's is a wicked intention, though the act he commits is lawful. Helen's is both a lawful intention and a lawful deed. The fact, as relates to Bertram, was sinful, because he intended to commit adultery; yot neither he nor Helena actually sinned.

ACT IV.

SCENE I.

Without the Florentine Camp.

Enter first Lord, with five or six Soldiers in ambush.

1 Lord. He can come no other way but by this hedge's corner. When you sally upon him, speak what terrible language you will; though you understand it not yourselves, no matter; for we must not seem to understand him ; unless some one among us, whom we must produce for an interpreter.

1 Sold. Good captain, let me be the interpreter.

1 Lord. Art not acquainted with him ? Knows he not thy voice ?

1 Sold. No, sir, I warrant you.

1 Lord. But what linsey-woolsey hast thou to speak to us again?

1 Sold. Even such as you speak to me.

1 Lord. He must think us some band of strangers i’the adversary's entertainment. Now he hath a smack of all neighboring languages; therefore we must every one be a man of his own fancy, not to know what we speak one to another ; so we seem to know, is to know straight our purpose :? chough's 3 language, gabble enough and good enough. As for you, interpreter, you must seem very politic. But couch, ho!. here he comes; to beguile two hours in a sleep, and then to return and swear the lies he forges.

Enter PAROLLES.

Par. Ten o'clock : within these three hours 'twill be time enough to go home. What shall I say I have done ? It must be a very plausive invention that

1 i. e. foreign troops in the enemy's pay.

2 The sense of this passage is obvious, though there is an apparent imperfection in the form of expression. 3 A bird of the jack-daw kind. VOL. II.

52

carries it. They begin to smoke me; and disgraces have of late knocked too often at my door. I find my tongue is too fool-hardy ; but my heart hath the fear of Mars before it, and of his creatures, not daring the reports of my tongue.

1 Lord. This is the first truth, that e'er thine own tongue was guilty of.

[Aside. Par. What the devil should move me to undertake the recorery of this drum; being not ignorant of the impossibility, and knowing I had no such purpose? I must give myself some hurts, and say 1

got

them in exploit. Yet slight ones will not carry it; they will say, Came you off with so little ? and great ones I dare not give. Wherefore? What's the instance ?! Tongue, I must put you into a butterwoman's mouth, and buy another of Bajazet's mute,” if you prattle me into these perils.

1 Lord. Is it possiblè he should know what he is, and be that he is?

[Aside. Par. I would the cutting of my garments would serve the turn; or the breaking of my Spanish sword. 1 Lord. We cannot afford you so.

[Aside. Par. Or the baring 3 of my beard; and to say, it was in stratagem. 1 Lord. 'Twould not do.

[Aside. Par. Or to drown my clothes, and say, I was stripped. i Lord. Hardly serve.

[Aside. Par. Though I swore I leaped from the window of the citadel 1 Lord. How-deep ?

[Aside. Par. Thirty fathom.

1 Lord. Three great oaths would scarce make that be believed.

[Aside. Par. I would I had any drum of the enemy's; I would swear I recovered it. 1 Lord. You shall hear one anon.

[ Aside.

1 The proof. < The old copy reads mule. The emendation was made by Warb'ırton 3 i e. the shaving of my beard. To bare anciently signified to shave.

Par. A drum now of the enemy's!

[Alurum within 1 Lord. Throca movousus, cargo, cargo, cargo. All. Cargo, cargo, villianda par corbo, cargo. Par. 0! ransom, ransom.

Do not hide mine eyes

[They seize him and blindfold him 1 Sold. Boskos thromuldo boskos.

Par. I know you are the Muskos' regiment,
And I shall lose my life for want of language.
If there be here German, or Dane, Low Dutch,
Italian, or French, let him speak to me;
I will discover that which shall undo
The Florentine.
1 Sold.

Boskos vauvado.-
I understand thee, and can speak thy tongue.-
Kerelybonto :Sir,
Betake thee to thy faith, for seventeen poniards
Are at thy bosom
Par.

Oh! 1. Sold.

O

pray, pray, pray. Manka revania dulche. 1 Lord.

Oscorbi dulchos volivorca. 1 Sold. The general is content to

spare

thee

yet; And, hoodwinked as thou art, will lead thee on To gather from thee; haply, thou mayst inform Something to save thy life. Par.

0, let me live, And all the secrets of our camp I'll show, Their force, their purposes. Nay, I'll speak that Which you will wonder at. 1 Sold.

But wilt thou faithfully? Par. If I do not, damn me. 1 Sold.

Acordo linta.Come on, thou art granted space.

[Exit

, with PAROLLES guarded. I Lord. Go, tell the count Rousillon, and my

brother, We have caught the woodcock, and will keep him

muffled, Till we do hear from them.

[graphic][merged small][merged small][merged small]

2 Sold.

Captain, I will. 1 Lord. He will betray us all unto ourselves ;Inform 'em that. 2 Sold.

So I will, sir. 1 Lord. Till then, I'll keep him dark, and safely locked.

[Exeunt.

SCENE II. Florence.

Florence. A Room in the Widow's

House.

Enter BERTRAM and DIANA.

Ber. They told me that your name was Fontibell.
Dia. No, my good lord, Diana.
Ber.

Titled goddess;
And worth it, with addition ! But, fair soul,
In
your

fine frame hath love no quality?
If the quick fire of youth light not your mind,
You are no maiden, but a monument.
When you are dead, you should be such a one
As you are now, for you are cold and stern;
And now you should be as your mother was,
When your sweet self was got.

Dia. She then was honest.
Ber.

So should

you

be. Dia.

No.
My mother did but duty; such, my lord,
As you owe to your wife.
Ber.

No more of that!
I pr’ythee, do not strive against my vows:?
I was compelled to her ; but I love thee
By love's own sweet constraint, and will forever
Do thee all rights of service.
Dia.

Ay, so you serve us,
Till we serve you: but when you have our roses,
You barely leave our thorns to prick ourselves,
And mock us with our bareness.

1 i. e. against his determined resolution never to cohabit with Helena.

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