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Thai. So, this is Tyre, and this is the Court. Here must I kill King Pericles; and if I do not, I am sure to be hang'd at home: 'tis dangerous. — Well, I perceive he was a wise fellow, and had good discretion, that being bid to ask what he would of the king, desired he might know none of his secrets: now do I see he had some reason for it; for if a king bid a man be a villain, he is bound by the indenture of his oath to be one. — Hush! here come the lords of Tyre.
Enter Heltcantts, Escanes, and other Lords.
Hel. You shall not need, my fellow peers of Tyre, Farther to question me of your king's departure: His seal'd commission, left in trust with me, Doth speak sufficiently he's gone to travel.
Thai. [Aside.'] How! the King gone?
Hel. If farther yet you will be satisfied,
Thai. [Aside.] What from Antioch?
Hel. Royal Antiochus (on what cause I know not)
Thai. [Aside.] Wrell, I perceive
VOL. XII. u
But since lie 's gone, the King's ears it must please:
Heh Lord Thaliard from Antiochus is welcome.
Thai. From him I come, With message unto princely Pericles; But since my landing I have understood Your lord hath betook himself to unknown travels, My message must return from whence it came.
Hel. We have no reason to desire it, Commended to our master, not to us: Yet, ere you shall depart, this we desire, As friends to Antioch, we may feast in Tyre. \_Exeunt,
Enter Cleon, Dionyza, and Attendants.
Cleon. My Dionyza, shall we rest us here,
Dionyza. That were to blow at fire in hope to
Cle. 0 Dionyza,
Our woes into the air; our eyes do weep,
Till tongues fetch breath that may proclaim them
louder; That if Heaven slumber while their creatures want, They may awake their helps to comfort them. I'll then discourse our woes, felt several years, And, wanting breath to speak, help me with tears.
Dio. I'll do my best, sir.
Cle. This Tharsus, o'er which I have the govern-
Dio. O, 'tis too true.
Cle. But see what Heaven can do! By this oui change, These mouths, whom but of late, earth, sea, and air, Were all too little to content and please, Although they gave their creatures in abundance, As houses are defU'd for want of use, They are now starv'd for want of exercise: Those palates, who not us'd to savour hunger, Must have inventions to delight the taste, Would now be glad of bread, and beg for it: Those mothers who to nousle up their babes Thought naught too curious, are ready now To eat those little darlings whom they lov'd.
So sharp are hunger's teeth, that man and wife
Bio. Our cheeks and hollow eyes do witness it.
Cle. O, let those cities, that of Plenty's cup
Enter a Lord.
Lord. Where's the Lord Governor?
Cle. Here. Speak out thy sorrows which thou bring'st, in haste, For comfort is too far for us to expect.
Lord. We have descried, upon our neighbouring shore, A portly sail of ships make hitherward.
Cle. I thought as much. One sorrow never comes but brings an heir That may succeed as his inheritor; And so in ours. Some neighbouring nation, Taking advantage of our misery, Hath stuff'd these hollow vessels with their power, To beat us down, the which are down already; And make a conquest of unhappy me, Whereas no glory 's got to overcome.
Lord. That's the least fear; for, by the semblance Of their white flags display'd, they bring us peace, And come to us as favourers, not as foes.
CZe. Thou speak'st like him 's untutor'd to repeat;
Who makes the fairest shew means most deceit.
But bring they what they will, and what they can,
What need we fear?
The ground 's the low'st, and we are half way there.
Go, tell their general we attend him here,
To know for what he comes, and whence he comes,
And what he craves.
Lord. I go, my lord. [Exit,
Cle. Welcome is peace, if he on peace consist;
If wars, we are unable to resist.
Enter Pericles, with Attendants.
Per. Lord Governor, for so we hear you are, Let not our ships and number of our men, Be, like a beacon fir'd, to amaze your eyes. We have heard your miseries as far as Tyre, And seen the desolation of your streets; Nor come we to add sorrow to your tears, But to relieve them of their heavy load: And these our ships you happily may think Are like the Trojan horse was stuff'd within With bloody veins, expecting overthrow, Are stor'd with corn to make your needy bread, And give them life whom hunger starv'd half dead.
All. The gods of Greece protect you! And we'll pray for- you.
Per. Arise, I pray you, rise:
We do not look for reverence, but for love,
Cle. The which when .any shall not gratify,