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Bene. Surely, I do believe, your fair cousin is wrong'd.

Beat. Ah, how much might the man deserve of me, that would right her!

Bene. Is there any way to fhew such friendship?
Beat. A very even way, but no such friend.
Bene. May a man do it ?
Beat. It is a man's office, but not yours.

Bene. I do love nothing in the world so well as you ; is not that strange?

Beat. As strange as the thing I know not; it were as possible for me to say, I loved nothing so well as you; but believe me not; and yet

fess nothing, nor I deny nothing. I am sorry for

Bene. By my sword, Beatrice, thou lov'st me.
Beat. Do not swear by it, and eat it.
Bene. I will swear by it that you

love me ;

and I will make him eat it, that says, I love not you. Beat. Will you not eat


word ?
Bene. With no sauce that can be deyis'd to it ; I
proteft, I love thee.

Beat. Why then, God forgive me.
Bene. What offence, sweet Beatrice ?

Beat. You have stay'd me in a happy hour; I was about to proteft, I lov'd you.

Bene. And do it with all thy heart.

Beat. I love you with so much of my heart, that none is left to protest.

Bene. Come, bid me do any thing for thee.
Beat. Kill Claudio.
Bene. Ha ! not for the wide world.
Beat. You kill me to deny; farewel.
Bene. Tarry, sweet Beatrice.

Beat. I am gone, tho’ I am here ; there is no love in you; nay,

pray you,

Bene. Beatrice,
Beat. In faith, I will go.
H 5


me go.


Bene. We'll be friends first.

Beat. You dare easier be friends with me, than fight with mine enemy. Bene. Is Claudio thine enemy?

Beat. Is he not approved in the height a villain, that hath flander'd, fcorn'd, dishonour'd my kinfwoman ! O, that I were a man! what! bear her in hand until they come to take hands, and then with public accusation, uncover'd slander, unmitigated

O God, that I were a man! I would eat his heart in the market-place. Bene. Hear


Beat. Talk with a man out at a window ?.

a proper saying!

Bene. Nay, but Beatrice.

Beat. Sweet Hero! she is wrong'd, she is slander'd, she is undone.

Bene. Beat.

Beat. Princes and Counts ! surely, a princely testimony, a goodly count-comfect, a sweet gallant, furely! O that I were a man for his fake! Or that I had any friend would be a man for my

fake! but manhood is melted into curtesies, valour into compliment, and men are only turn'd into tongue, and trim ones too ; he is now as valiant as Hercules, that only tells a lie, and swears it: I cannot be a man with wishing, therefore I will die a woman with grieving.

Bene. Tarry, good Beatrice ; by this hand, I love thee.

Beat.. Use it for my love some other way than swearing by it.

Bene. Think you in your soul, the Count Claudio hath wrong'd Hero?

Beat. Yea, as sure as I have a thought or a foul.

Bene. Enough, I am engag'd; I will challenge him, I will kiss your hand, and so leave you ; by this hand, Claudio shall render me a dear account;



To. Cl. Dogb. O, a stool and a cushion for the sex

Much ado Ado about Nothing. · 155 you hear of me, so think of me; go comfort your cousin; I must say, she is dead, and so farewel


{Exeunt. S CE N E IV.

Changes to a Prison.
Enter Dogberry, Verges, Borachio, Conrade, the

Town-Clerk and Sexton in Gowns.

TS whole dissembly ? [ton! I

Sexton. Which be the malefactors ?
Verg. Marry, that am I and my Partner.

Dogb. Nay, that's certain, we have the exhibition to examine.

Sexton. But which are the offenders that are to be examin'd ? let them come before master conftable.

To. Cl. Yea, marry, let them come before me ; what is your name, friend?

Bora. Borachio.
To. Cl. Pray, write down, Borachio. Yours, Sirrah ?

Conr. I am a gentleman, Sir, and my name is

To. Cl. Write down, mafter gentleman Conrade ; masters, do you serve God ?

Both. Yea, Sir, we hope.

To. Cl. Write down, that they hope they serve God: and write God first: for God defend, but God should go before such villains. Masters, it is proved already that you are little better than false knaves, and it will go near to be thought so shortly; how answer you for yourselves ?

Conr. Marry, Sirs, we say, we are none.

To, Cl. A marvellous witty fellow, I assure you, but I will go about with him. Come you hither, sirrah, a word in your ear, Sir; I say to you, it is thought you are both false knayes. H6


Bora. Sir, I say to you, we are none.

To. Cl. Well, stand aside ; 'fore God, they are both in a tale ; have you writ down, that they are none ?

Sexton. Master town-clerk, you go not the way examine, you must call the watch that are their accusers.

To. Cl. Yea, marry, that's the deftest way, let the Watch come forth ; masters, I charge you in the Prince's name accuse these men.


Enter Watchmen. 1 Watch. This man said, Sir, that Don John the Prince's brother was a villain.

To. Cl. Write down, Prince John a villain ; why this is flat perjury, to call a Prince's brother villain.

Bora, Mafter town-clerk

To. Cl. Pray thee, fellow, Peace; I do not like thy look, I promise thee. Sexton. What heard

you him say else? 2 Watch. Marry, that he had receiv'd a thousand ducats of Don John, for accufing the lady Hero wrongfully

To. Cl. Flat burglary, as ever was committed.
Dogb. Yea, by th' mafs, that it is.
Sexton. What else, fellow?

i Watch. And that Count Claudio did mean, upon his words, to disgrace Hero before the whole assembly, and not marry her.

To. Cl. O villain! thou wilt be condemn'd into everlasting redemption for this.

Sexton. What else ?
2 Watch. This is all.

Sexton. And this is more, masters, than you can deny. Prince John is this morning secretly stoll'n away : : Hero was in this manner accus'd, and in this very manner refus'd, and upon the grief of this suddenly dy’d. Master Constable, let these men be


bound and brought to Leonato ; I will go before, and shew him their examination.

Dogb. Come, let them be opinion'd. * Sexton. Let them be in hand.

[Exit. Conr. Off, Coxcomb.

Dogb. God's my life, where's the Sexton ? let him write down the Prince's officer Coxćomb: come, bind them, thou naughty varlet.

Conr. Away! you are an ass, you are an ass.

Dogb. Dost thou not suspect my place ? dost thou not fufpect my years ? O, that he were here to write me down an ass! but, masters, remember, that I am an afs; though it be not written down, yet forget not that I am an ass ; no, thou villain, thou art full of piety, as shall be prov'd upon thee by good witnefs ; I am a wise fellow, and which is more, an officer; and which is more, an housholder ; and which is more, as pretty a piece of flesh as any Messina, and one that knows the law; go to, and a rich fellow enough ; go to, and a fellow that hath had losses ; and one that hath two gowns,


every thing handsome about him; bring him away ; 0, that I had been writ down an ass !





Before Leonato's House.
Enter Leonato and Antonio.

F you go on thus, you will kill yourself;


Against yourself.

Leon. * Sexton. Let them be in the hands of Coxcomb.] So the Editions. Mr. Theobald gives the words to Conrade, and says, But why the Sexton should be so pert upon his Brother Officers, there seems no Reafon from


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