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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.


SCENE II. Florence. A Room in the Widow's



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
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.

So should you be.

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 compelled to her; but I love thee
By love's own sweet constraint, and will forever
Do thee all rights of service.

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.


How have I sworn ? Dia. 'Tis not the many oaths, that make the

But the plain, single vow, that is vowed true.
What is not holy, that we swear not by,
But take the Highest to witness. Then pray you, tell

If I should swear by Jove's great attributes,
I loved you dearly, would you believe my oaths,
When I did love you ill? This has no holding,
To swear by Him whom I protest to love,
That I will work against him.?

Therefore, your
Are words, and poor conditions, but unsealed ;
At least, in my opinion.

Change it, change it;
Be not so holy-cruel. Love is holy;
And my integrity ne'er knew the crafts

you do charge men with. Stand no more off,
But give thyself unto my sick desires,
Who then recover : say thou art mine, and ever
My love, as it begins, shall so persever.

Dia. I see that men make hopes, in such a war, That we'll forsake ourselves. Give me that ring.

Ber. I'll lend it thee, my dear, but have no power
To give it from me.

Will you not, my lord ?
Ber. It is an honor 'longing to our house,
Bequeathed down from many ancestors;
Which were the greatest obloquy i'the world
In me to lose.

1 The sense is, we never swear by what is not holy, but take to witness the Highest, the Divinity.

2 This passage is considered obscure by some commentators; but the meaning appears to be very obvious: an oath has no binding force, when we swear by the Deity, whom we profess to love, that we will commit a deed that is displeasing to him.

3 The old copy reads, “make ropes in such a scarre.” Rowe changed it to, “make hopes in such affairs ;” and Malone to, “make hopes in such a scene." But affairs and scene have no literal resemblance to the old word scarre : warre is always so written in the old copy; the change is therefore less violent, and more probable.


Mine honor's such a ring.
My chastity's the jewel of our house,
Bequeathed down from many ancestors;
Which were the greatest obloquy i’the world
In me to lose. Thus, your own proper wisdom
Brings in the champion honor on my part,
Against your vain assault.

Here, take my ring :
My house, mine honor, yea, my life be thine,
And I'll be bid by thee.
Dia. When midnight comes, knock at my chamber

window; I'll order take, my mother shall not hear. Now will I charge you in the band of truth, When you have conquered my yet maiden bed, Remain there but an hour, nor speak to me: My reasons are most strong; and you shall know them, When back again this ring shall be delivered : And on your finger, in the night, I'll put Another ring; that what in time proceeds, May token to the future our past deeds. Adieu till then; then, fail not. You have won A wife of me, though there my hope be done. Ber. A heaven on earth I have won, by wooing thee.

[Exit. Dia. For which live long to thank both Heaven SCENE III. The Florentine Camp.

and me! You may so in the end. My mother told me just how he would woo, As if she sat in his heart; she says, all men Have the like oaths : he had sworn to marry me When his wife's dead; therefore I'll lie with him When I am buried. Since Frenchmen are so braid, Marry that will, I'll live and die a maid : Only in this disguise I think't no sin To cozen him that would unjustly win. [Exit.

1 i. e. false, deceitful, tricking, beguiling.

Enter the two French Lords, and two or three Soldiers.

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' anatomized; that he might take a measure of his own judgment, wherein so curiously he had set this counterfeit.?

1 i. e. betrays his own secrets in his own talk. 2 Damnable for damnably; the adjective used adverbially. 3 Company for companion.

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; 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 letters ; 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. I am heartily sorry, that he'll be glad of this.

1 Lord. How mightily, sometimes, we make us comforts of our losses !

2 Lord. And how mightily, some other times, we

1 This is a very just and moral reason. Bertram, by finding how erroneously he has judged, will be less confident, and more easily moved by admonition.

2 Counterfeit, besides its ordinary signification of a person pretending to be what he is not, also meant a picture; the word set shows that the word is used in both senses here.

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