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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' 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. Lord. Art not acquainted with him? knows he not thy voice?
1 Sold. No, sir, I warrant you.
1 Lord. But what linsy-woolsy 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' 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.
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 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 recovery of this drum; being not ignorant of the impossibility, and knowing I had no such purpose? I must give myself some hurts, and say, I 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 butter-woman's mouth, and buy another of Bajazet's mule, if you prattle me into these perils. 1 Lord. Is it possible, 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 of my beard; and to say, it was in stratagem.
1 Lord. "Twould not do.
Par. Or to drown my clothes, and say, I was stripped.
i Lord. Hardly serve.
Par. Though I swore I leaped from the window
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. Par. A drum now of the enemy's!
[Alarum within. 1 Lord. Throca movousus, cargo, cargo, curgo. All. Cargo, cargo, villianda par corbo, cargo. Par. O! ransome, ransome:-) -Do not hide mine eyes. [They seize him, and blindfold him
1 Sold. Boskos thromuldo boskos.
1 Sold. Boskos vauvado:
I understand thee, and can speak thy tongue:-
O, pray, pray, pray.
Oscorbi dulchos volivorca.
1 Sold. The general is content to spare thee yet; And hood-wink'd as thou art, will lead thee on To gather from thee: haply, thou mayst inform Something to save thy life.
Par. O, 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.
Enter BERTRAM and DIANA.
Ber. They told me, that your name was Fontibell Dia. No, my good lord, Diana. 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
My mother did but duty; such, my lord, As you owe to your wife.
No more of that! I pr'ythee, do not strive against my vows: I was compell'd to her; but I love thee By love's own sweet constraint, and will for ever 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 wound ourselves, And mock us with our bareness.
Ber. How have I sworn? Dia. "Tis not the many oaths that make the truth; But the plain single vow, that is vow'd true. What is not holy, that we swear not by,
But take the Highest to witness: Then, pray you, tell me,
If I should swear by Jove's great attributes,
Dia. When midnight comes, knock at my chamber window;
I'll order take, my mother shall not hear.
My mother told me just how he would woo,
Enter the two French Lords, and two or three
1 Lord. You have not given him his mother's letter?
2 Lord. I have delivered it an hour since: there is something in't that stings his nature: for, on the reading it, he changed almost into another man.
1 Lord. He has much worthy blame laid upon him, for shaking off so good a wife, and so sweet a lady.
2 Lord. Especially he hath incurred the everlasting displeasure of the king, who had even tuned his bounty to sing happiness to him. I will tell you a thing, but you shall let it dwell darkly with you. 1 Lord. When you have spoken it, 'tis dead, and I am the grave of it.
2 Lord. He hath perverted a young gentlewoman here in Florence, of a most chaste renown; and this night he fleshes his will in the spoil of her honor: he hath given her his monumental ring, and thinks himself made in the unchaste composition.
1 Lord. Now, God delay our rebellion; as we are ourselves, what things are we!
2 Lord. Merely our own traitors. And as in the common course of all treasons, we still see them reveal themselves, till they attain to their abhorred ends; so he, that in this action contrives against his own nobility, in his proper stream o'erflows himself.
1 Lord. Is it not meant damnable' in us, to be trumpeters of our unlawful intents? We shall not then have his company to-night?
2 Lord. Not till after midnight; for he is dieted to his hour.
1 Lord. That approaches apace: I would gladly have him see his company' anatomised; that he might take a measure of his own judgments, wherein so curiously he had set this counterfeit.
2 Lord. We will not meddle with him till he come; for his presence must be the whip of the other.
1 Lord. In the mean time, what hear you of these wars?
2 Lord. I hear, there is an overture of peace. 1 Lord. Nay, I assure you, a peace concluded. 2 Lord. What will count Rousillon do then? will he travel higher, or return again into France? 1 Lord. I perceive, by this demand, you are not altogether of his council.
2 Lord. Let it be forbid, sir! so should I be a great deal of his act.
1 Lord. Sir, his wife, some two months since fled from his house; her pretence is a pilgrimage to Saint Jaques le grand; which holy undertaking with most austere sanctimony, she accomplished Here, as elsewhere, used adverbially For companion.
and, there residing, the tenderness of her nature became as a prey to her grief; in fine made a groan of her last breath, and now she sings in heaven. 2 Lord. How is this justified?
1 Lord. The stronger part of it by her own letter which makes her story true, even to the point of her death; her death itself, which could not be
her office to say, is come, was faithfully confirmed by the rector of the place.
2 Lord. Hath the count all this intelligence? 1 Lord. Ay, and the particular confirmations, point from point to the full arming of the verity.
2 Lord. His confession is taken, and it shall be read to his face: if your lordship be in't, as I believe you are, you must have the patience to hear it.
Re-enter Soldiers, with PAROLLES.
Ber. A plague upon him! muffled! he can say nothing of me; hush! hush!
1 Lord. Hoodman comes!-Porto tartarossa. 1 Sold. He calls for the tortures; What will you say without 'em?
Par. I will confess what I know without con
2 Lord. I am heartily sorry, that he'll be glad straint; if he pinch me like a pasty, I can say no
1 Lord. How mightily sometimes we make us comforts of our losses!
2 Lord. And how mightily, some other times, we drown our gain in tears! The great dignity, that his valor hath here acquired for him, shall at home be encountered with a shame as ample.
1 Lord. The web of our life is of a mingled yarn, good and ill together: our virtues would be proud, if our faults whipped them not; and our crimes would despair, if they were not cherished by our virtues.
Enter a Servant.
How now? where's your master?
Serv. He met the duke in the street, sir, of whom he hath taken a solemn leave; his lordship will next morning for France. The duke hath offered him letters of commendations to the king.
2 Lord. They shall be no more than needful there, if they were more than they can commend.
1 Lord. They cannot be too sweet for the king's tartness. Here's his lordship now. How now, my lord, is't not after midnight?
Ber. I have to-night despatched sixteen businesses, a month's length a-piece, by an abstract of success: I have congé'd with the duke, done my adieu with his nearest; buried a wife, mourned for her; writ to my lady mother, I am returning; entertained my convoy; and, between these main parcels of despatch, effected many nicer needs; the last was the greatest, but that I have not ended yet.
2 Lord. If the business be of any difficulty, and this morning your departure hence, it requires haste of your lordship.
Ber. I mean, the business is not ended, as fearing to hear of it hereafter: But shall we have this dialogue between the fool and the soldier?- -Come, bring forth this counterfeit module; he has deceived me, like a double-meaning prophesier.
2 Lord. Bring him forth: [Exeunt Soldiers.] He has sat in the stocks all night, poor gallant knave. Ber. No matter; his heels have deserved it, in usurping his spurs so long. How does he carry himself?
1 Lord. I have told your lordship already; the stocks carry him. But, to answer you as you would be understood; he weeps, like a wench that had shed her milk: he hath confessed himself to Morgan, whom he supposes to be a friar, from the time of his remembrance, to this very instant disaster of his sitting i'the stocks: And what think you he hath confessed?
Ber. Nothing of me, has he?
An allusion to the degradation of a knight by hacking off his spurs.
Par. And truly, as I hope to live.
the duke is strong. What say you to that? 1 Sold. First demand of him how many horse
unserviceable: the troops are all scattered, and the Par. Five or six thousand; but very weak and commanders very poor rogues, upon my reputation and credit, and as I hope to live.
1 Sold. Shall I set down your answer so? Par. Do; I'll take the sacrament on't, how and which way you will.
Ber. All's one to him. What a past-saving slave is this!
1 Lord. You are deceived, my lord; this is monsieur Parolles, the gallant militarist, (that was his own phrase,) that had the whole theorick of war in the knot of his scarf, and the practice in the chape' of his dagger.
2 Lord. I will never trust a man again, for keeping his sword clean; nor believe he can have every thing in him, by wearing his apparel neatly. 1 Sold. Well, that's set down.
Par. Five or six thousand horse, I said, I will say true, or thereabouts, set down,-for I'll speak truth.
1 Lord. He's very near the truth in this. Ber. But I con him no thanks for't, in the nature he delivers it.
Par. Poor rogues, I pray you, say.
1 Sold. Well, that's set down.
Par. I humbly thank you, sir: a truth's a truth, the rogues are marvellous poor.
1 Sold. Demand of him of what strength they are a-foot. 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
The point of the scabbard.
Cassock then signified a horseman's loose coat. Disposition and character.
of him whether one captain Dumain be i'the camp, for rapes and ravishments he parallels Nessus. He a Frenchman; what his reputation is with the duke, professes not keeping of oaths; in breaking them, what his valor, honesty, and expertness in wars; or he is stronger than Hercules. He will lie, sir, with whether he thinks it were not possible, with well-such volubility, that you would think truth were a weighing sums of gold, to corrupt him to a revolt. fool: drunkenness is his best virtue; for he will be What say you to this? what do you know of it? swine-drunk; and in his sleep he does little harm, Par. I beseech you, let me answer to the particu- save to his bed-clothes about him; but they know lar of the interrogatories: Demand them singly. his conditions, and lay him in straw. I have but 1 Sold. Do you know this captain Dumain? little more to say, sir, of his honesty; he has every Par. I know him: he was a botcher's 'prentice in thing that an honest man should not have; what Paris, from whence he was whipped for getting the an honest man should have, he has nothing. sheriff's fool with child; a dumb innocent, that 1 Lord. I begin to love him for this. could not say him, nay. Ber. For this description of thine honesty? A pox upon him for me, he is more and more a cat. 1 Sold. What say you to his 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 honor to be the officer at a place there called Mile-end, to instruct for the doubling of files: I would do the man what honor I can, but of this I am not certain.
[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 the 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.
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 allurements 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 favor. 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. Dainable, both sides rogue!
1 Sold. When he swears oaths, bid him drop gold, and take it;
After he scores he never pays the score; [it; Half won, is match well made: match, and well make He ne'er pays after debts, take it before; And say, a soldier, Dian, told thee this. Men are to mell with, boys are not to kiss: For count of this, the count's a fool, I know it, Who pays before, but not when he does owe it.
Thine, as he vow'd to thee in thine ear,
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 Lord. He hath out-villanied villany 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. Par. Sir, for a quart d'ecu3 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 outruns any lackey; marry, in com ing 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 to 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 serve the world for no honest use: therefore you must dic. Come, headsmen, off with his head.
Par. O Lord, sir; let me live, or let me see my death.
1 Sold. That shall you, and take your leave of all your friends. [Unmufling him.
So, look about you; Know you any here?
2 Lord. Bless you, captain Parolles.
2 Lord. Captain, what greeting will you to my lord Lafeu? I am for France.
1 Lord. Good captain, will you give me a copy of the sonnet you writ to Diana in behalf of the count Rousillon? an I were not a very coward, I'd compel you well.
1 Sold. We'll see what may be done, so you confess freely; therefore, once more to this captain Du-it of you; but fare main: You have answered to his reputation with the duke, and to his valor: What is his honesty? Par. He will steal, sir, an egg out of a cloister;
1 A natural fool.
[Exeunt BERTRAM, Lords, &c.
2 The centaur killed by Hercules.
1 Sold. You are undone, captain: all but your scarf, that has a knot on't yet.
Par. Who cannot be crushed with a plot? 1 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 shall speak of you [Exit. 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.
death of the most virtuous gentlewoman that ever nature had praise for creating: if she had partaken of my flesh, and caused 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 salads, ere we light on such another herb.
Clo. Indeed, sir, she was the sweet-marjoram of the salad, or, rather, the herb of grace.2
Laf. They are not salad-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.
Hel. That you may well perceive I have not do her service. wrong'd you,
One of the greatest in the Christian world
Shall be my surety; 'fore whose throne, 'tis needful,
I am supposed dead: the army breaking,
My husband hies him home; where, heaven aiding,
You never had a servant, to whose trust
And helper to a husband. But, O strange men!
Go with your impositions,
Let death and honesty
Yet, I pray you,———
Enter COUNTESS, LAFEU, and CLOWN.
Count. I would, I had not known him! it was the
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 suggest3 thee from thy master thou talkest 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. I am 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 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 looked 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.
Laf. A shrewd knave, and an unhappy.4 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 his 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 numbered thirty; he will be here to-morrow, or I am deceived by him that in such intelligence hath seldom failed.
Count. It rejoices me, that I hope I shall see him
2 i. e. Rue. a Seduce. 4 Mischievously unhappy, waggish.