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but I had rather it would please you, I might be whipp’d.
Duke. Whipp'd first, sir, and hang'd after.-
Lucio. I beseech your highness, do not marry me to a whore! Your highness said even now, I made you a duke: good my lord, do not recoinpence me, in making me a cuckold.
Duke. Upon mine honour, thou shalt marry her. Thy slanders I forgive; and therewithal Remit thy other forfeits* ;-Take him to prison ; And see our pleasure herein executed.
Lucio. Marrying a punk, my lord, is pressing to death, whipping, and hanging.
Duke. Siand'ring a prince deserves it. She, Claudio, that you wrong’d, look you restore.Joy to you, Mariana !-love her, Angelo ; I have confess'd her, and I know her virtue.Thanks, good friend Escalus, for thy much good
ness : There's more behind, that is more gratulate t. Thanks, provost, for thy care, and secresy ; We shall employ thee in a worthier place :Forgive him, Angelo, that brought you home The head of Ragozine for Claudio's; The offence pardons itself.-Dear Isabel, I have a motion much imports your good; Whereto if you'll a willing ear incline, What's mine is yours, and what is yours is mine:So, bring us to our palace; where we'll show What's yet behind, that's meet you all should know.
+ To reward.
The novel of Giraldi Cinthio, from which Shakspeare is supposed to have borrowed this fable, may be read in Shakspeare Illustrated, elegantly translated, with remarks which will assist the inquirer to discover how much absurdity Shakspeare has admitted or avoided.
I cannot but suspect that some other had new-modelled the novel of Cinthio, or written a story which in some particulars
speare immediately followed. The emperor in Cinthio is named Maximine: the duke, in Shakspeare's enumeration of the persons of the drama, is called Vincentio. This appears a very slight remark; but since the duke has no name in the play, nor is ever mentioned but by his title, why should he be called Vincentio among the persons, but because the name was copied from the story, and placed superfluously at the head of the list, by the mere habit of transcription? It is therefore likely that there was then a story of Vincentio duke of Vienna, different from that of Maxiinine emperor of the Romans.
Of this play, the light or comick part is very natural and pleasing, but the grave scenes, if a few passages be excepted, have more labour than elegance. The plot is rather intricate than artful. The time of the action is indefinite : some time, we know not how much, must have elapsed between the recess of the duke and the imprisonment of Claudio; for he must have learned the story of Mariana in his disguise, or he delegated his power to a man already known to be corrupted. The unities of action and place are sufficiently preserved. --JOHNSON.
Don Pedro, Prince of Arrugon.
gentlewomen attending on Hero. Ursula,
Messengers, watch, and attendants.