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ACT V.

SCENE 1. A field between the British and Roman

camps.

Enter Posthumus, with a bloody handkerchief. Post. Yea, bloody cloth, I'll keep thee; for I

wish'd
Thou should'st be colour'd thus. You married ones.
If each of you would take this course, how many
Must murder wives much better than themselves,
For wrying* but a little ?-0, Pisanio!
Every good servant does not all commands:
No bond, but to do just ones.-Gods ! if you
Should have ta'en vengeance on my faults, I never
Had liv'd to put ont this: so had you saved
The noble Imogen to repent; and struck
Me wretch, more worth your vengeance. But, alack,
You snatch some hence for little faults; that's love,
To have them fall no more: you some permit
To second ills with ills, each elder worse;
And make them dread it to the doer's thrift.
But Imogen is your own : Do your best wills,
And niake me bless'd to obey!-I am brought hither
Among the Italian gentry, and to fight
Against my lady's kingdom: 'Tis enough
That, Britain, I have kill'd thy mistress; peace!
I'll give no wound to thee. Therefore, good hea.

vens,
Hear patiently my purpose: I'll disrobe me
Of these Italian weeds, and suit myself
As does a Briton peasant: so I'll fight
Against the part I come with ; so I'll die

• Deviating from the right way.
+ Incite, instigate.

For thee, O Imogen, even for whom my life
Is, every breath, a death; and thus, unknown,
Pitied nor hated, to the face of peril
Myself I'll dedicate. Let me make men know
More valour in me, than my habits show.
Gods, put the strength o'the Leonati in me!
To shame the guise o'the world, I will begin
The fashion, less without, and more within. (Ezit.

SCENE II.

The same.

Inter at one side, Lucius, Tachimo, and the Roman army; at the other side, the British army; Leo. Datus Posthumus following it, like a poor soldier. They march over, and go out. Alarums. Then enter again in skirmish, Iachimo and Posthumus ; he panquisheth and disarmeth Iachimo, and then leaves him.

lach. The heaviness and guilt withio my bosom Takes off my manhood: I have belied a lady, The princess of this country, and the air on't Revengingly enfeebles me; Or could this carlo, A very drudge of nature's, have subdu'd me, In my profession? Knighthoods and honours, borne As I wear mine, are titles but of scorn. If that thy gentry, Britain, go before This lout, as he exceeds our lords, the odds Is, that we scarce are men, and you are gods.

(Erit.

• Clown.

The battle continues; the Britons fly; Cymbeline is taken: then enter, to his rescue, Belarius, Gui. derius, and Arviragus.

Bel. Stand, stand! We have the advantage of the

ground;
The lane is guarded: nothing routs us, but
T'he villainy of our fears,
Gui. Aro.

Stand, stand, and fight!

Enter Posthumus, and seconds the Britons: They

rescue Cymbeline, and exeunt. Then, enter Lucius, Iachimo, and Imogen.

Luc. Away, boy, from the troops, and save thy,

self:
For friends kill friends, and the disorder's such
As war were hood-wink'd.
Iach.

'Tis their fresh supplies. Luc. It is a day turn'ù strangely: Or betimes Let's re-enforce, or fly.

[Excunt.

SCENE III.

Another part of the field.

Enter Posthumus and a British Lord. Lord. Cam`st thou from where they made the

stand? Post.

I did: Though you, it seems, come from the fliers. Lord.

I did. Post. No blame be to you, sir; for all was lost, But that the heavens fought: The king himself Of his wings destitute, the army broken, And but the backs of Britons seen, all flying

Through a strait lane; the enemy full-hearted,
Lolling the tongue with slaughtering, having work
More plentiful than tools to do't, struck down
Some mortally, some slightly touch'd, some falling
Merely through fear; that the strait pass was

damm'd*
With dead men, hurt behind, and cowards living
To die with lengthen'd shame.
Lord.

Where was this lane? Post. Close by the battle, ditch'd and wall’d with

turf; Which gave advantage to an ancient soldier, An honest one, I warrant; who deserv'd So long a breeding, as his white heard came to, In doing this for his country ;-athwart the lane, He, with two striplings (lads more like to run The country baset, than to commit such slaughter; With faces fit for masks, or rather fairer Than those for preservation cas'd, or shame), Made good the passage ; cry'd to those that fled, Our Britain's harts die flying, not our men : To darkness fleet, souls that fly backwards! Stand; Or we are Romans, and will give you that Like beasts, which you shun beastly; and may

save, But to look back in frown: stand, stand. These

three, Three thousand confident, in act as many, (For three performers are the file, when all The rest do nothing,) with this word, stand, stand, Accommodated by the place, more charming, With their own nobleness (which could have turn'd A distaff to a lance), gilded pale looks, Part, shame, part, spirit renew'd; that some, turn'd

coward But by example (0, a sin in war,

• Block'd up.

+ A country.game called prison-bars, vulgarly prison-base.

Damn'd in the first beginners !) 'gan to look
The way that they did, and to grin like lions
Upon the pikes o'the hunters. Then began
A stop i'the chaser, a retire; anon,
A rout, confusion thick: Forthwith, they fly
Chickens, the way which they stoop'd eagles; slaves,
The strides they victors made: and now our cowards
(Like fragments in hard voyages), became
The life o'the need; having found the back-door open
Of the unguarded hearts, Heavens, how they wound!
Some, slain before; some, dying ; some, their friends
O'erborne i'the former wave: ten, chas'd by one,
Are now each one the slaughterman of twenty:
Those, that would die or ere resist, are grown
The mortal bugs o'the field.
Lord.

This was strange chance : A narrow lane! an old man, and two boys!

Post. Nay, do not wonder at it: You are made
Rather to wonder at the things you hear,
Than to work any. Will you rhyme upon't,
And vent it for a mockery? Here is one:
Two boys, an old man twice a boy, a lane,
Presero'd the Britons, was the Romans' bane.

Lord. Nay, be not angry, sir.
Post.

'Lack, to what end?
Who dares pot stand his foe, I'll be his friend:
For if he'll do, as he is made to do,
I know, he'll quickly fly my friendship too.
You have put me into rhyme.

Lord. Farewell, you are angry. (Erit.

Post. Still going?- This is a lord! O poble misery! To be i'the field, and ask, what news, of me! To-day, how many would have given their honours To have sav'd their carcasses ? took heel to do't, And yet died too? I, in mive owo wue charm'd, * Could not find death, where I did hear him groan; Nor feel him, where he struck : Being an ugly mon.

ster,

. Terrors.

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