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COMEDY OF ERRORS.
BOLINUw, Duke of Ephesus.
ANGELO, a Goldsmith. Ægeon, a Merchant of Syracuse.
A Merchant, Friend to Antipholus of Syracuso.
Twin Brothers, and Pinch, a Schoolmaster, and a Conjurer. ANTIPHOLUS of Ephesus, Sons to Ægeon and Æmilia, Wife to Ægeon, an Abbess at Ephesus ANTIPHOLUS of Syracuse, Æmilia, but unknown
AnniÁNA, Wife to Antipholus of Ephesus.
Luciana, her Sister.
Gaoler, Officers, and other Attendants.
SCENE I.-A Hall in the Duke's Palace. Duke. Well, Syracusan, say, in brief, the cause Enter Duke, Ægeon, Gaoler, Officers, and other And for what cause thou cam'st to Ephesus.
Why thou departedst from thy native home; Attendants.
Æge. A heavier task could not have been impos'd Æge. Proceed, Solinus, to procure my fall, Than I to speak my griefs unspeakable: And by the doom of death, end woes and all.
Yet, that the world may witness, that my end Duke. Merchant of Syracusa, plead no more; Was wrought by nature, not by vile offence, I am not partial to infringe our laws:
I'll utter what my sorrow gives me leave. The enmity and discord, which of late
In Syracusa was I born; and wed
Unto a woman, happy but for me,
With her I liv'd in joy; our wealth increas'd,
To Epidamnum, till my factor's death; For, since the mortal ana intestine jars
And he (great care of goods at random left) "Twixt thy seditious countrymen and us,
Drew me from kind embracements of my spouse: It hath in solemn synods been decreed,
From whom my absence was not six months old, Both by the Syracusans and ourselves,
Before herself (almost at fainting under To admit no traffic to our adverse towns:
The pleasing punishment that women bear) Nay, more,
Had made provision for her following me, If any born at Ephesus, be seen
And soon, and safe, arrived where I was. At any Syracusan marts and fairs;
There she had not been long, but she became Again, If any Syracusan born,
A joyful mother of two goodly sons; Come to the bay of Ephesus, he dies,
And which was strange, the one so like the other, His goods confiscate to the duke's dispose; As could not be distinguish'd but by names. Unless a thousand marks be levied,
That very hour, and in the self-same inn, To quit the penalty, and to ransome him.
A poor mean woman was delivered Thy substance valued at the highest rate,
Of such a burden, male twins, both alike: Cannot amount unto a hundred marks;
Those, for their parents were exceeding poor, Therefore, by law thou art condemn'd to die.
I bought, and brought up to attend my sons. Æge. Yet this my comfort; when your words My wife, not meanly proud of two such boys, are done,
Made daily motions for our home return: My woes end likewise with the evening sun. Unwilling I agreed; alas, too soon.
We came aboard:
· Name of a coin.
A league from Epidamnum had we sailed, Might bear him company in the quest of him: Before the always-wind-obeying deep
Whom whilst I labord of a love to see Gave any tragic instance of our harm:
I hazarded the loss of whom I lov'd. But longer did we not retain much hope; Five summers have I spent in furthest Greece, For what obscured light the heavens did grant Roaming clean' through the bounds of Asia, Did but convey unto our fearful minds
And, coasting homeward, came to Ephesus; A doubtful warrant of immediate death;
Hopeless to find, yet loath to leave unsought, Which, though myself would gladly have embraced, Or that, or any place that harbors men. Yet the incessant weepings of my wife,
But here must end the story of my life; Weeping before for what she saw must come, And happy were I in my timely death, And piteous plainings of the pretty babes, Could all my travels warrant me they live. That mourn'd for fashion, ignorant what to fear, Duke. Hapless Ægeon, whom the fates have Forced me to seek delays for them and me,
mark'd And this it was,—for other means was none.- To bear the extremity of dire mishap! The sailors sought for safety by our boat, Now, trust me, were it not against our laws, And left the ship, then sinking-ripe, to us : Against my crown, my oath, my dignity, My wife, more careful for the elder born,
Which princes, would they, may not disannul, Had fasten'd him unto a small spare mast, My soul should sue as advocate for thee. Such as sea-faring men provide for storms; But, though thou art adjudged to the death, To him one of the other twins was bound, And passed sentence may not be recallid, Whilst I had been like heedful of the other. But, to our honor's great disparagement, The children thus dispos'd, my wife and I, Yet will I favor thee in what I can: Fixing our eyes on whom our care was fix’d, Therefore, merchant, I'll limit thee this day Fastend ourselves at either end the mast; To seek thy help by beneficial help: And floating straight, obedient to the stream, Try all the friends thou hast in Ephesus; Were carried towards Corinth, as we thought. Beg thon, or borrow, to make up the sum, At length the sun, gazing upon the earth, And live; if not, then thou art doom'd to die: Dispers'd those vapors that offended us; Gaoler, take him to thy custody. And, by the benefit of his wish'd light,
Gaol. I will, my lord. The seas wax'd calm, and we discovered
Æge. Hopeless, and helpless, doth Ægeon wend, Two ships from far making amain to us,
But to procrastinate his lifeless end. [Exeunt. Of Corinth that, of Epidaurus this: But ere they came,–0, let me say no more!
SCENE II.- A public Place. Gather the sequel by that went before.
Duke. Nay, forward, old man, do not break off so; Enter ANTIPHOLUS and Dromo of Syracuse, and For we may pity, though not pardon thee.
a Merchant Æge. O, had the gods done so, I had not now Mer. Therefore, give out, you are of Epidamnum Worthily term'd them merciless to us!
Lest that your goods too soon be confiscate. For, ere the ships could meet by twice five leagues, This very day, a Syracusan merchant We were encounter'd by a mighty rock; Is apprehended for arrival here; Which being violently borne upon,
And, not being able to buy out his life, Our helpful ship was splitted in the midst, According to the statute of the town, So that, in this unjust divorce of us,
Dies ere the weary sun set in the west, Fortune had left to both of us alike
There is your money that I had to keep. What to delight in, what to sorrow for.
Ant. S. Go bear it to the Centaur, where we host, Her part, poor soul! seeming as burdened And stay there, Dromio, till I come to thee. With lesser weight, but not with lesser woe, Within this hour it will be dinner-time: Was carried with more speed before the wind; Till that I'll view the manners of the town, And in our sight they three were taken up Peruse the traders, gaze upon the buildings, By fishermen of Corinth, as we thought. And then return, and sleep within mine inn; At length, another ship had seiz'd on us; For with long travel I am stiff and weary. And, knowing whom it was their hap to save, Get thee away. Gave helpful welcome to their shipwreck'd guests; Dro, S. Many a man would take you at your word, . And would have reft' the fishers of their prey, And go indeed, having so good a mean. Had not their bark been very slow of sail,
[Exit Dro. S. And therefore homeward did they bend their
Ant. S. A trusty villain," sir; that very oft, course.
When I am dull with care and melancholy, Thus have you heard me sever'd from my bliss; Lightens my humor with his merry jests. That by misfortunes was my life prolong'd, What, will you walk with me about the town, To tell sad stories of my own mishaps.
And then go to my inn, and dine with me? Duke. And, for the sake of them thou sorrowest Mer. I am invited, sir, to certain merchants, for,
Of whom I hope to make much benefit; Do me the favor to dilate at full
I crave your pardon. Soon, at five o'clock, What hath befall’n of them, and thee, till now. Please you, I'll meet with you upon the mart,
Æge. My youngest boy, and yet my eldest care, And afterwards consort you till bed-time; At eighteen years became inquisitive
My present business calls me from you now. After his brother; and importun'd me,
Ant. S. Farewell till then: I will go lose myself That his attendant (for his case was like, And wander up and down, to view the city. Pofl of his brother, but retain'd his name)
• Glo. ? Bereft, deprived.
Mer. Sir, I commend you to your own content. Ant. S. Come, Dromio, come, these jests are out
of season; Ant. S. He that commends me to mine own con- Reserve them till a merrier hour than this: tent,
Where is the gold I gave in charge to thee? Commends me to the thing I cannot get.
Dro. E. To me, sir ? why you gave no gold to me I to the world am like a drop of water,
Ant. S. Come on, sir knave, have done your foolThat in the ocean seeks another drop;
ishness, Who, falling there to find his fellow forth, And tell me, how thou hast dispos’d thy charge. Unseen, inquisitive, confounds himself:
Dro. E. My charge was but to fetch you from the So I, to find a mother, and a brother,
mart In quest of them, unhappy, lose myself.
Home to your house, the Phænix, sir, to dinner; Enter Dromio of Ephesus.
My mistress, and her sister, stay for you.
Ant. S. Now, as I am a christian, answer me, Here comes the almanac of my true date - In what safe place you have bestow'd my money; What now? How chance, thou art return'd so soon? Or I shall break that merry sconce of yours, Dro. E. Return'd so soon! rather approach'd too That stands on tricks when I am undispos’d: late:
Where is the thousand marks thou hadst of me? 'The capon burns, the pig falls from the spit; Dro. E. I have some marks of yours upon my pate, The clock has strucken twelve upon the bell, Some of my mistress' marks upon my shoulders, My mistress made it one upon my cheek: But not a thousand marks between you both. She is so hot, because the meat is cold;
If I should pay your worship those again, The meat is cold, because you come not home; Perchance, you will not bear them patiently. You come not home, because you have no stomach; Ant. S. Thy mistress' marks! what mistress, slave, You have no stomach, having broke your fast;
hast thou ?
[Phænix : But we, that know what 'tis to fast and pray, Dro. E. Your worship’s wife, my mistress at the Are penitent for your default to-day.
She that doth fast, till you come home to dinner, Ant. S. Stop in your wind, sir; tell me this, 1 "And prays, that you will hie you home to dinner. pray;
Ant.s. What, wilt thou flout me thus unto my face, Where have you left the money that I gave you? Being forbid ? There, take you that, sir knave. Dro. E. 0,-sixpence, that I had o'Wednesday Dro. E. What mean you, sir ? for heaven's sake, last,
hold your hands ; To pay the saddler for my mistress' crupper;- Nay, an you will not, sir, I'll take my heels. The saddler had it, sir, I kept it not.
[Exit Dro. E.
Dro. E. I pray you, jest, sir, as you sit at dinner: Dark-working sorcerers, that change the mind,
Soul-killing witches, that deform the body;
Disguised cheaters, prating mountebanks, For she will score your fault upon my pate. And many such like liberties of sin; Methinks, your maw, like mine, should be your If it prove so, I will be gone the sooner. clock,
I'll to the Centaur, to go seek this slave; And strike you home without a messenger. I greatly fear my money is not safe. [Exit
SCENE I.- A public Place. The beasts, the fishes, and the winged fowls,
Are their males' subject, and at their controls :
Of more pre-eminence than fish and fowls,
Adr. This servitude makes you to keep unwed. A man is master of his liberty :
Luc. Not this, but troubles of the marriage bed. Time is their master; and, when they see time, Adr. But were you wedded, you would bear some They'll go, or come: if so, be patient, sister.
sway. Adr. Why should their liberty than ours be more! Luc. Ere I learn love, I'll practise to obey. Luc. Because their business still lies out o'door. Adr. How if your husband start some other Adr. Look, when I serve him so, he takes it ill.
where? Luc. O, know, he is the bridle of your will. Luc. Till he come home again, I would forbear. Adr. There's none but asses will be bridled so. Adr. Patience, unmov’d, no marvel though sho Luc. Why headstrong liberty is lash'd with woe.
pause; There's nothing situate under heaven's eye, They can be meek, that have no other cause. But hath his bound, in earth, in sea, in sky:
A wretched soul, bruis'd with adversity,
What ruins are in me, that can be found We bid be quiet, when we hear it cry;
By him not ruin'd? then is he the ground But were we burden’d with like weight of pain, Of my defeatures: My decayed fair As much, or more, we should ourselves complain: A sunny look of his would soon repair ; So thou, that hast no unkind mate to grieve thee, But, too unruly deer, he breaks the pale, With urging helpless patience wouldst relieve me: And feeds from home; poor I am but his stale.? But if thou live to see like right bereft,
Luc. Self-arming jealousy !-fye, beat it hence. This fool-begg'd patience in thee will be left. Adr. Unfeeling fools can with such wrongs disLục. Well, I will marry one day, but to try ;
pense, Here comes your man, now is your husband nigh. I know his eye doth homage otherwhere; Enter DROMIO of Ephesus.
Or else, what lets it but he would be here? Adr. Say, is your tardy master now at hand ?
Sister, you know, he promis’d me a chain ;Dro. E. Nay, he is at two hands with me, and So he would keep fair quarter with his bed!
Would that alone alone he would detain, that my two ears can witness. Adr. Say, didst thou speak with him ? know'st Will lose his beauty; and though gold ’bides still,
I see, the jewel, best enamelled, thou his mind? Dro. E. Ay, ay, he told his mind upon mine ear: Wear gold : and so no man, that hath a name,
That others touch, yet often touching will Beshrew his hand, I scarce could understand it. Luc. Spake he so doubtfully, thou couldst not Since that my beauty cannot please his eye,
But falsehood and corruption doth it shame. feel his meaning !
I'll Dro. E. Nay, he struck so plainly, I could too
weep what's left away, and weeping die. well feel his blows; and withal so doubtfully, that
Luc. How many fond fools serve mad jealousy! I could scarce understand them.
[Exeunt. Adr. But say, I pr’ythee, is he coming home?
SCENE II.—The same.
Enter AntiPHOLUS of Syracuse.
Ant. S. The gold, I gave to Dromio, is laid up Dro. E. I mean not cuckold-mad; but, sure, Safe at the Centaur ; and the heedful slave he's stark mad:
Is wander'd forth, in care to seek me out. When I desired him to come home to dinner, By computation, and mine host's report, lle ask'd me for a thousand marks in gold: I could not speak with Dromio, since at first 'Tis dinner-time, quoth I; My gold, quoth he: I sent him from the mart: See, here he comes. Your meat dath burn, quoth I; My gold, quoth he:
Enter Dromo of Syracuse, Will you come home? quoth I; My gold, quoth he; Where is the thousand marks I gave thee, villain How now, sir? is your merry humor alter'd ? The pig, quoth I, is burn'd; My gold, quoth he: As you love strokes, so jest with me again. My mistress, sir, quoth I; Hang up thy mistress; You know no Centaur! you receiv'd no gold ? I know not thy mistress; out on thy mistress!
Your mistress sent to have me home to dinner? Luc. Quoth who?
My house was at the Phønix? Wast thou mad, Dro. E. Quoth my master :
That thus so madly thou didst answer me? I know, quoth he, no house, no wife, no mistress ;
Dro. S. What answer, sir ? when spake I such a So that my errand, due unto my tongue,
word ? I thank him, I bear home upon my shoulders;
Ant. S. Even now, even here, not half an hour For, in conclusion, he did beat me there. [home.
since. Adr. Go back again, thou slave, and fetch him
Dro. S. I did not see you since you sent me hence, Dro. E. Go back again, and be new beaten home? Home to the Centaur, with the gold you gave me. For God's sake, send some other messenger.
Ant. S. Villain, thou didst deny the gold's receipt; Adr. Back, slave, or I will break thy pate across. And told'st me of a mistress, and a dinner; Dro. E. And he will bless that cross with other For which, I hope, thou felt'st I was displeas’d. beating:
Dro. S. I am glad to see you in this merry vein: Between you I shall have a holy head.
What means this jest ? I pray you, master, tell me. Adr. Hence, prating peasant; fetch thy master Ant. S. Yea, dost thou jeer, and flout me in the home.
teeth? Dro. E. Am I so round with you, as you with me, Think'st thou, I jest? Hold, take thou that, and That like a football you do spurn me thus?
[Beating him. You spurn me hence, and he will spurn me hither:
Dro. S. Hold, sir, for God's sake: now your If I last in this service, you must case me in leather. jest is earnest :
[E.cit. Upon what bargain do you give it me! Luc. Fye, how impatience low'reth in your face. Ant. S. Because that I familiarly sometimes
Adr. His company must do his minions grace, Do use you for my fool, and chat with you, Whilst I at home starve for a merry look.
Your sauciness will jest upon my love, Hath homely age the alluring beauty took And make a common of my serious hours. From my poor cheek? then he hath wasted it: When the sun shines, let foolish gnats make sport Are my discourses dull ? barren my wit ? But creep in crannies, when he hides his beams. If voluble and sharp discourse be marr’d, If you will jest with me, know my aspéct," Unkindness blunts it, more than marhle hard. And fashion your demeanor to my looks, Do their gay vestments his affections bait ? Or I will beat this method in your sconce. That's not my fault, he's master of my state:
• Alteration of features. 1 Fair, for fairness. 2 Stalking-horse,
• Hinders. . Le Scarce stand under them.
• Study iny countenance.
Dro. S. Sconce, call you it! so you would leave Ant. S. You would all this time have proved, battering, I had rather have it a head: an you use there is no time for all things. these blows long, I must get a sconce for my head, Dro. S. Marry, and did, sir ; namely, no time to and insconce it too; or else I shall seek my wit in recover hair lost by nature. my shoulders. But, I pray, sir, why am I beaten? Ant. S. But your reason was not substantial, Ant. S. Dost thou not know?
why there is no time to recover. Dro. S. Nothing, sir; but that I am beaten. Dro. S. Thus I mend it: Time himself is bald, Ant. S. Shall I tell you why?
and therefore, to the world's end, will have bald Dro. S. Ay, sir, and wherefore; for, they say, followers. every why hath a wherefore.
'Ant. 8. I knew it would be a bald conclusion Ant. s. Why, first;—for flouting me; and then, But soft! who wafts us yonder?
wherefore, For urging it the second time to me.
Enter ADRIANA and LUCIANA. Dro. S. Was there ever any man thus beaten out Adr. Ay, ay, Antipholus, look strange and frown. of season?
Some other mistress hath thy sweet aspects ; When, in the why, and the wherefore, is neither I am not Adriana, nor thy wife. rhyme nor reason ?
The time was once, when thou unurged wouldst vow Well, sir, I thank you.
That never words were music to thine ear, Ant. s. Thank me, sir! for what?
That never object pleasing in thine eye, Dro. S. Marry, sir, for this something that you That never touch well-welcome to thy hand, gave me for nothing.
That never meat sweet-savor'd in thy taste, Ant. S. I'll make you amends next, to give you Unless I spake, look’d, touch’d, or carv'd to thee. nothing for something. But say, sir, is it dinner- How comes it now, my husband, oh, how comes it time?
That thou art then estranged from thyself? Dro. S No, sir; I think, the meat wants that I Thyself I call it, being strange to me, have.
That, undividable, incorporate, Ant. S. In good time, sir, what's that?
Am better than thy dear self's better part. Dro. S. Basting.
Ah, do not tear away thyself from me;
For know, my love, as easy mayst thou fall
And take unmingled thence that drop again, Dro. S. Lest it make you choleric, and purchase Without addition, or diminishing, me another dry basting.
As take from me thyself, and not me too. Ant. S. Well, sir, learn to jest in good time; How dearly would it touch thee to the quick, There's a time for all things.
Shouldst thou but hear I were licentious ? Dro. S. I durst have denied that, before you were And that this body, consecrate to thee, so choleric.
By ruffian lust should be contaminate? Ant. S. By what rule, sir?
Wouldst thou not spit at me, and spurn at me, Dro. S. Marry, sir, by a rule as plain as the plain And hurl the name of husband in my face, bald pate of father Time himself.
And tear the stain'd skin off my harlot brow, Ant. S. Let's hear it.
And from my false hand cut the wedding ring, Dro. S. There's no time for a man to recover his | And break it with a deep-divorcing vow ? hair, that grows bald by nature.
I know thou canst; and therefore, see, thou do it. Ant. s. May he not do it by fine and recovery? I am possess'd with an adulterate blot;
Dro. S. Yes, to pay a fine for a peruke, and My blood is mingled with the crime of lust : recover the lost hair of another man.
For, if we two be one, and thou play false, Ant. 8. Why is time such a niggard of hair, I do digest the poison of thy flesh, being, as it is, so plentiful an excrement ?
Being strumpeted by thy contagion. Dro. S. Because it is a blessing that he bestows Keep then fair league and truce with thy true bed; on beasts: and what he hath scanted men in hair, I live dis-stain'd, thou undishonored. [not: he hath given them in wit.
Ant. S. Plead you to me, fair dame? I know you Ant. S. Why, but thero's many a man hath more In Ephesus I am but two hours old, hair than wit.
As strange unto your town, as to your talk ; Dro. S. Not a man of those, but he hath the wit Who, every word by all my wit being scann'd, to lose his hair.
Want wit in all one word to understand. [you: Ant. S. Why, thou didst conclude hairy men Luc. Fye, brother! how the world is changed with plain dealers without wit.
When were you wont to use my sister thus ? Dro. S. The plainer dealer, the sooner lost: Yet She sent for you by Dromio home to dinner. he loseth it in a kind of jollity.
Ant. S. By Dromio? Ant. S. For what reason ?
Dro. S. By me?
[him,Dro. S. For two; and sound ones too.
Adr. By thee: and this thou didst return from Ant. S. Nay, not sound, I pray you.
That he did buffet thee, and in his blows Dro. S. Sure ones then.
Denied my house for his, me for his wife. [man ? Ant. S. Nay, not sure, in a thing falsing. Ant. S. Did you converse, sir, with this gentlewoDro. S. Certain ones then.
What is the force and drift of your compact ? Ant. S. Name them.
Dro. S. I, sir? I never saw her till this time. Dro. S. The one, to save the money that he Ant. S. Villain, thou liest ; for even her very spends in tiring; the other, that at dinner they Didst thou deliver to me on the mart. [word. should not drop in his porridge.
Dro. S. I never spake with her in all my life. • A sconce was a fortification.