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Par. So I say; both of Galen and Paracelsus.
Laf. That gave him out incurable,-
Laf. Not to be helped,
Par. Right: as 'twere, a man assured of an-
Par. Just; you say well; so would I have said. Laf. I may truly say, it is a novelty to the world. Par. It is, indeed: if you will have it in showing, you shall read it in—What do you call there ?
Laf. A showing of a heavenly effect in an earthly
Par. That's it I would have said; the very same. Laf. Why, your dolphin1 is not lustier: 'fore me, I speak in respect
Par. Nay, 'tis strange, 'tis very strange; that is the brief and the tedious of it; and he is of a most facinorous spirit, that will not acknowledge it to be
Laf. Very hand of Heaven.
Laf. In a most weak
Par. And debile minister, great power, great transcendence; which should, indeed, give us a further use to be made, than alone the recovery of the king, as to be
Laf. Generally thankful.
Enter King, HELENA, and Attendants.
Par. I would have said it; you say well. Here comes the king.
1 The dauphin was formerly so written, but it is doubtful whether Lafeu means to allude to the prince or the fish. The old orthography is therefore continued.
2 Dr. Johnson thought this and some preceding speeches in the scene were erroneously given to Parolles instead of to Lafeu. This seems very probable, for the humor of the scene consists in Parolles's pretensions to knowledge and sentiments which he has not.
Laf. Lustick,' as the Dutchman says. I'll like a maid the better, whilst I have a tooth in my head. Why, he's able to lead her a coranto.
Par. Mort du Vinaigre! Is not this Helen?
King. Go, call before me all the lords in court.—
Sit, my preserver, by thy patient's side;
Enter several Lords.
Fair maid, send forth thine eye. This youthful parcel
O'er whom both sovereign power and father's voice 2
Peruse them well: Not one of those, but had a noble father.
Heaven hath, through me, restored the king to health.
We blush, that thou shouldst choose; but, be refused,
1 Lustigh is the Dutch for active, pleasant, playful, sportive.
2 They were wards as well as subjects.
3 i. e. except one, meaning Bertram; but in the sense of be-out.
4 A curtal was the common phrase for a horse; i. e. "I'd give my bay horse, &c. that my age were not greater than these boys':" a broken mouth is a mouth which has lost part of its teeth.
Let the white death sit on thy cheek forever;
King. Make choice; and, see, Who shuns thy love, shuns all his love in me. Hel. Now, Dian, from thy altar do I fly; And to imperial Love, that god most high, Do my sighs stream.-Sir, will you hear hear my 1 Lord. And grant it.
Thanks, sir; all the rest is mute. Laf. I had rather be in this choice, than throw ames-ace for my life.
Hel. The honor, sir, that flames in your fair eyes, Before I speak, too threateningly replies. Love make your fortunes twenty times above Her that so wishes, and her humble love! 2 Lord. No better, if you please. Hel. My wish receive, Which great love grant! and so I take my leave. Laf. Do all they deny her?3 An they were sons of mine, I'd have them whipped; or I would send them to the Turk, to make eunuchs of.
Hel. Be not afraid [To a lord.] that I your hand should take;
I'll never do you wrong for your own sake.
Laf. These boys are boys of ice; they'll none have her. Sure, they are bastards to the English; the French ne'er got them.
Hel. You are too young, too happy, and too good, To make yourself a son out of my blood.
4 Lord. Fair one, I think not so.
Laf. There's one grape yet,—I am sure thy father drank wine.-But if thou be'st not an ass, I am a youth of fourteen; I have known thee already.
1 Be refused means the same as "thou being refused," or "be thou refused." The white death is the paleness of death.
2 The lowest chance of the dice.
3 The scene must be so regulated that Lafeu and Parolles talk at a distance, where they may see what passes between Helena and the lords, but not hear it; so that they know not by whom the refusal is made.
Hel. I dare not say, I take you; [To BERTRAM.] but I give
Me, and my service, ever whilst I live,
Ber. My wife, my liege? I shall beseech your highness,
In such a business give me leave to use
What she has done for me?
Ber. Yes, my good lord; But never hope to know why I should marry her. King. Thou know'st she has raised me from my sickly bed.
Ber. But follows it, my lord, to bring me down
King. 'Tis only title1 thou disdain'st in her, the which
I can build up. Strange is it that our bloods,
All that is virtuous, (save what thou dislik'st,
Is good; without a name, vileness is so:3
1 i. e. the want of title.
Know'st thou not, Bertram,
3. Good is good, independent of any worldly distinction; and so vileness would be ever vile, did not rank, power, and fortune, screen it from opprobrium.
The property by what it is should go,
If thou canst like this
Is her own dower; honor and wealth from me.
Hel. That you are well restored, my lord, I am glad ; Let the rest go.
King. My honor's at the stake; which to defeat,3
My love, and her desert; that canst not dream,
Shall weigh thee to the beam; that wilt not know,
We please to have it grow. Check thy contempt:
Do thine own fortunes that obedient right,
1 i. e. the child of honor.
2 The first folio omits best; the second folio supplies it.
3 The implication or clause of the sentence (as the grammarians say)
here serves for the antecedent—“ which danger to defeat.”
4 The allusion appears to be to the reeling gait of intoxication.