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SCENE I.Milan. An Abbey.


Egl. The Sun begins to gild the western sky;

And now it is about the very hour

That Silvia, at Friar Patrick's cell, should meet me.
She will not fail; for lovers break not hours,

Unless it be to come before their time;

So much they spur their expedition.

See where she comes.


Lady, a happy evening!

Sil. Amen, amen! Go on, good Eglamour,

Out at the postern by the abbey-wall :

I fear I am attended by some spies.

Egl. Fear not the forest is not three leagues off;

If we recover that, we're sure enough.


SCENE II. - The Same. A Room in the DUKE'S Palace.

Enter THURIO, PROTEUS, and JULIA in boy's clothes.

Thu. Sir Proteus, what says Silvia to my suit?

Pro. O, sir, I find her milder than she was;

And yet she takes exceptions at your person.

Thu. What, that my leg is too long?

Pro. No; that it is too little.

Thu. I'll wear a boot, to make it somewhat rounder.

Jul. [Aside.] But love will not be spurr'd to what it loathes.

Thu. What says she to my face?

Pro. She says it is a fair one.

Thu. Nay, then the wanton lies; my face is black.
Pro. But pearls are fair; and the old saying is,

Black men are pearls in beauteous ladies' eyes.

Jul. [Aside.] 'Tis true, such pearls as put out ladies'


For I had rather wink than look on them.

Thu. How likes she my discourse?

Pro. Ill, when you talk of war.

Thu. But well, when I discourse of love and peace?

Jul. [Aside.] But, indeed, better when you hold your


Thu. What says she to my valour?


No doubt of that.

O, sir, she makes

Jul. [Aside.] She needs not, when she knows it cowardice.

Thu. What says she to my birth?

Pro. That you are well derived.

Jul. [Aside.] True; from a gentleman to a fool.

Thu. Considers she my possessions?

Pro. O, ay; and pities them.

Thu. Wherefore?

Jul. [Aside.] That such an ass should owe 1 them.

Pro. That they are out by lease.2

Jul. Here comes the Duke.

Enter the DUKE.

Duke. How now, Sir Proteus! how now, Thurio!

Which of you saw Sir Eglamour of late?

1 Owe for own or possess. See page 104, note 7.

2 Thurio means his lands; but Proteus chooses to take him as meaning his mental endowments, which, he says, are out of his keeping, or "out by lease"; so that he, lacking them, is a dunce.

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Duke. Why, then she's fled unto that peasant Valentine; And Eglamour is in her company.

'Tis true; for Friar Laurence met them both,

As he in penance wander'd through the forest:
Him he knew well; and guess'd that it was she,
But, being mask'd, he was not sure of it:
Besides, she did intend confession

At Patrick's cell this even; and there she was not:
These likelihoods confirm her flight from hence.
Therefore, I pray you, stand not to discourse,
But mount you presently; and meet with me
Upon the rising of the mountain-foot

That leads toward Mantua, whither they are fled:

Dispatch, sweet gentlemen, and follow me.


Thu. Why, this it is to be a peevish3 girl,

That flies her fortune when it follows her.
I'll after, more to be revenged on Eglamour
Than for the love of reckless Silvia.


Pro. And I will follow, more for Silvia's love

Than hate of Eglamour, that goes with her.


Jul. And I will follow, more to cross that love

Than hate for Silvia, that is gone for love.


SCENE III.- The Forest.

Enter Outlaws with SILVIA.

1 Out. Come, come;

Be patient; we must bring you to our Captain.

& Peevish for foolish, the more common meaning of the word in Shake

speare's time.

Sil. A thousand more mischances than this one Have learn'd me how to brook this patiently. 2 Out. Come, bring her away.

1 Out. Where is the gentlemen that was with her? 3 Out. Being nimble-footed, he hath outrun us, But Moses and Valerius follow him.

Go thou with her to th' west end of the wood;
There is our Captain: we'll follow him that's fled;
The thicket is beset, he cannot 'scape.

[Exeunt all but the First Outlaw and SILVIA. 1 Out. Come, I must bring you to our Captain's cave: Fear not; he bears an honourable mind,

And will not use a woman lawlessly.

Sil. O Valentine, this I endure for thee!


- Another part of the Forest.

Val. How use doth breed a habit in a man!
These shadowy, desert, unfrequented woods
I better brook than flourishing peopled towns:
Here can I sit alone, unseen of any,
And to the nightingale's complaining notes
Tune my distresses and record1 my woes.
O thou that dost inhabit in my breast,
Leave not the mansion so long tenantless,
Lest, growing ruinous, the building fall,
And leave no memory of what it was!
Repair me with thy presence, Silvia;


Thou gentle nymph, cherish thy fórlorn swain!-[Noise within.

1 To record was used for to sing. So in Drayton's Eclogues: "Fair Philomel, night-music of the Spring, sweetly records her tuneful harmony." And Cotgrave explains Regazoiuller, “To report, or to record, as birds, one another's warbling."

What halloing and what stir is this to-day?

'Tis sure, my mates, that make their wills their law,

Have some unhappy passenger in chase :

They love me well; yet I have much to-do 2

To keep them from uncivil outrages.

Withdraw thee, Valentine: who's this comes here? [Retires.

Enter PROTEUS, SILVIA, and JULIA in boy's clothes.

Pro. Madam, this service I have done for you, Though you respect not aught your servant doth, To hazard life, and rescue you from him

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That would have forced your honour and your love:
Vouchsafe me, for my meed, but one fair look;

A smaller boon than this I cannot beg,

And less than this, I'm sure, you cannot give.

Val. [Aside.] How like a dream is this I see and hear!

Love, lend me patience to forbear awhile.

Sil. O miserable, unhappy that I am!

Pro. Unhappy were you, madam, ere I came ;

But by my coming I have made you happy.

Sil. By thy approach thou makest me most unhappy.

Jul. [Aside.] And me, when he approacheth to your


Sil. Had I been seized by a hungry lion,
I would have been a breakfast to the beast,
Rather than have false Proteus rescue me.
O, Heaven be judge how I love Valentine,
Whose life's as tender to me as my soul;
And full as much for more there cannot be —
I do detest false perjured Proteus!

Therefore be gone, solicit me no more.

2 The Poet uses to-do repeatedly with the exact meaning of ado. So in Hamlet, ii. 2: "Faith, there has been much to-do on both sides." Commonly printed to do.

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