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Duke. Nay, forward, old man, do not break off so;' For we may pity, though not pardon thee. Æge. O, had the gods done so, I bad not now

I Worthily term’d them merciless to us! For, ere the ships could meet by twice five leagues, We were encounter'd by a mighty rock; Which being violently borne upon, Our helpful ship was splitted in the midst, So that, in this unjust divorce of us, Fortune had left to both of us alike What to delight in, what to sorrow for. Her part, poor soul! seeming as burdened With lesser weight, but not with lesser woe, Was carried with more speed before the wind; And in our sight they three were taken up By fishermen of Corinth, as we thought. At length, another ship bad seiz'd on us; And, knowing whom it was their hap to save, Gave helpful welcome to their shipwreck'd guests; And would have reft the fishers of their prey, Had not their bark been very slow of sail, And therefore homeward did they bend their course. Thus have you heard me sever'd from my bliss; That by misfortunes was my life prolong'd, To tell sad stories of my own mishaps.

Duke. And, for the sake of them thou sorrowest for,
Do me the favour to dilate at full
What hath befall’n of them, and thee, till now.

Æge. My youngest boy, and yet my eldest care,
At eighteen years became inquisitive
After his brother; and importun'd me,
That his attendant (for his case was like,
Reft of his brother, but retain'd his name),
Might bear him company in the quest of bim:
Whom whilst I labour'd of a love to see,
I hazarded the loss of whom I lov'd.
Five summers have I spent in furthest Greece,
Roaming clean through the bounds of Asia,
And, coasting homeward, came to Ephesus ;
Hopeless to find, yet loth to leave unsought,

Or that, or any place that harbours men.
But here must end the story of my life;
And happy were I in my timely death,
Could all my troubles warraut me they live.

Duke. Hapless Ægeon, whom the fates have mark'd
To bear the extremity of dire mishap!
Now, trust me, were it not against our laws,
Against my crown, my oath, iny dignity,
Which prínces, would they, may not disannul,
My soul should sue as advocate for thee.
But, though thou art adjudged to the death,
And passed sentence may not be recalld,
Bat to our honour's great disparagement,
Yet will I favour thee in what I can:
Therefore, merchant, I'll limit thee this day,
To seek thy help by benefieial help:
Try all the friends thou hast in Ephesus;
Beg thou, or borrow, to make up the sum,
And live; if not, then thou art doom'd to 'die :---
Gaoler, take him to thy custody.

Gaol. I will, my lord.

Æge. Hopeless, and helpless, doth Ægeon wend, But to procrastinate his lifeless end. [Exeunte

SCENE II. A public Place. Enter ANTIPHOLUS and Dromo of Syracuse, and a

Merchant. Mer. Therefore, give out, you are of Epidamnum, Lest that your goods too soon be confiscaie. This very day, a Syracusan inerchant Is apprehended for arrival here; And, not being able to buy out his life, According to the statute of the town, Dies ere the weary sun set in the west. There is your money that I had to keep:

Ant. S. Go bear it to the Centaur, where we host, And stay there, Dromio, till I come to thee. Within this hour it will be dinner-time: Till that, I'II view the manners of the town,

Get thee away.

Peruse the traders, gaze upon the buildings,
And then return, and sleep within mine inn;
For with long travel I am stiff and weary.

Dro. S. Many a man would take you at your word, And go indeed, having so good a mean. [Exit Dro. S.

Ant. S. A trusty villain, sir; that very oft,
When I am dull with care and melancholy,
Lightens my humour with his merry jests.
What, will you walk with me about the town,
And then go to my inn, and dine with me?

Mer. I am invited, sir, to certain merchants,
Of whom I hope to make much benefit;
I crave your pardon. Soon, at five o'clock,
Please you, I'll meet with you upon the mart,
And afterwards consort you till bed-time;
My present business calls me from you now.

Ant. S. Farewell till then: I will go lose myself,
And wander up and down, to view the city.
Mer. Sir, I commend you to your own content.

[Exit Merchant.
Ant. S. He that commends me to mine own content,
Commends me to the thing I cannot get.
I to the world am like a drop of water,
That in the ocean seeks another drop;
Who, falling there to find his fellow forth,
Unseen, inquisitive, confounds himself:
So I, to find a motlier and a brother,
In quest of them, unhappy, lose myself.

Enter Drom10 of Ephesus. Here comes the almanack of my true date,What now? How chance, thou art return'd so soon?

Dro. E. Return’d so soon! rather approach'd too late : The capon burns, the pig falls from the spit; The clock liath strucken twelve upon the bell, My mistress made it one upon my cheek : She is so hot because the meat is cold; The meat is cold, because you come not home; You come not home, because you have no stoinach;

You have no stomach, having broke your fast;
But we, that know what 'tis to fast and pray,
Are penitent for your default to-day.

Ant. S. Stop in your wind, sir; tell me this, I pray; Where bave you left the money that I gave you?

Dro. E. 0,-sixpence, that Í had o'Wednesday last, То pay the saddler for my mistress' crupper;The saddler had it, sir, 1 kept it not.

Ant. S. I am not in a sportive humour now: Tell me, and dally not, where is the money? We being strangers here, how dar'st thou trust So great a charge from thine own custody?

Dro. E. I pray you, jest, sir, as you sit at dinner : I from my mistress come to you in post; If I return, I shall be post indeed : For she will score your fault upon my pate. Methinks your maw, like mine, should be your clock, And strike you home without a messenger. Ant. S. Come, Dromio, come, these jests are out of

season; Reserve them till a merrier hour than this: Where is the gold I gave in charge to thee?

Dro. E. To me, sir? why you gave no gold to me, Ant. S. Come on, sir knave, have done your foolish

ness, And tell me, how thou hast dispos'd thy charge. Dro. E. My charge was but to fetch you from the

mart Home to your house, the Phænix, sir, to dinner; My mistress, and her sister, stay for you.

Ant. S. Now, as I am a Christian, answer me, In what safe place you have bestow'd my money ; Or I shall break that merry sconce of yours, That stands on tricks when I am undispos'd : Where is the thousand marks thou hadst of me?

Dro. E. I have some marks of yours upon my pate, Some of my mistress' marks upon my shoulders, But not a thousand marks betweeen you both.If I should pay your worship those again, Perchance, you will not bear them patiently.

Ant. S. Thy inistress' marks! what mistress, slave,

hast thou?
Dro. E. Your worship’s wife, my mistress at the

Phoenix;
She that doth fast, till you come home to dinner,
And prays,

that

you will hie you home to dinner.
Ant. S. What, wilt thou flout me thus unto my face,
Being forbid? There, take you that, sir knave.
Dro. E. What mean you, sir? for God's sake, hold

your hands;
Nay, an you will not, sir, I'll take my heels.

[Exit Dromio E.
Ant. S. Upon my life, by some device or other,
The villain is o'er-raught of all my money.
They say, this town is full of cozenage;
As, nimble jugglers, that deceive the eye,
Dark-working sorcerers, that change the mind,
Soul-killing witches, that deform the body;
Disguised cheaters, prating mountebanks,
And many such like liberties of sin:
If it prove so, I will be gone the sooner.
I'll to the Centaur, to go seek this slave;
I greatly fear, my money is not safe.

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