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How shall I best convey the ladder thither? I ever bore my daughter, or thyself.
VAL. It will be light, my lord, that you may


I will not hear thy vain excuse,
bear it

But, as thou lov’st thy life, make speed from hence. Under a cloak, that is of any length.

[Exit DUKE. Duke. A cloak as long as thine will serve the Val. And why not death, rather than living turn ?

torment? VAL. Ay, my good lord.

To die, is to be banish'd from myself; DUKE.

Then let me see thy cloak : And Silvia is myself: banish'd from her, I 'll get me one of such another length.

Is self from self: a deadly banishment ! VAL. Why, any cloak will serve the turn, my What light is light, if Silvia be not seen? lord.

What joy is joy, if Silvia be not by ?
DUKE. How shall I fashion me to wear a cloak?— Unless it be to think that she is by,
I pray thee, let me feel thy cloak upon me.- And feed upon the shadow of perfection.
What letter is this same? What's here?-T. Except I be by Silvia in the night,
Silvia ?

There is no music in the nightingale ;
And here an engine fit for my proceeding! Unless I look on Silvia in the day,
I'll be so bold to break the seal for once. [Reads. There is no day for me to look upon :

She is my essence; and I leave to be,
My thoughts do harbour with my Silvia nightly; If I be not by her fair influence
And slaves they are to me, that send them

Foster'd, illumind, cherish’d, kept alive.
flying :

I fly not death, to fly his deadly doom : 5 0, could their master come and go as lightly, Tarry I here, I but attend on death ; Himself would lodge, where senseless they are

But, fly I hence, I fly away from life. lying. My herald thoughts in thy pure bosom rest them;

Enter PROTEUS and LAUNCE. While I, their king, that thither them impor- Pro. Run, boy, run, run, and seek him out. tune,

LAUN. So-ho! so-ho! Do curse the grace that with such grace hath bless'd PRO, What seest thou ? them,

Laun. Him we go to find: Because myself do want my servants' fortune : There's not a hair on 's head, but 't is a Valentine. I curse myself, for they are sent by me,

Pro. Valentine ? That they should harbour where their lord should VAL. No. be.

Pro. Who then ? his spirit ?

VAL. Neither. What 's here?

PRO. What then?

VAL. Nothing. Silvia, this night I will enfranchise thee.

LAUN. Can nothing speak? Master, shall I 'T is so ; and here 's the ladder for the purpose.

strike ? Why, Phaëton, (for thou art Merops' son)

Pro. Who wouldst thou strike ? Wilt thou aspire to guide the heavenly car,

Laun. Nothing And with thy daring folly burn the world ?

Pro. Villain, forbear. Wilt thou reach stars, because they shine on thee? Laun. Why, sir, I 'll strike nothing : I pray Go, base intruder ! overweening slave !

you, Bestow thy fawning smiles on equal mates ; Pro. Sirrah, I say, forbear: Friend Valentine, And think, my patience, more than thy desert,

a word. Is privilege for thy departure hence :

Val. My ears are stopp’d, and cannot hear good Thank me for this, more than for all the favours,

news, Which, all too much, I have bestow'd on thee. So much of bad already hath possess'd them. But if thou linger in my territories,

Pro. Then in dumb silence will I bury mine, Longer than swiftest expedition

For they are harsh, untuneable, and bad. Will give thee time to leave our royal court,

VAL. Is Silvia dead ? By Heaven, my wrath shall far exceed the love Pro. No, Valentine.

a Merops' son,-) “Thou art Phaëton in thy rashness, but without his pretensions: thou art not the son of a divinity, but a terræ Alius, a low-born wretch; Merops is thy true father, with whom Phaëton was falsely reproached."-Johnson.

b I fly not death, to fly his deadly doom:) This is somewhat obscure. Mr. Singer reads :

; to fly is deadly doom:" but the original may mean,

"I escape not death in flying his (the Duke's) deadly doom."

c There's not a hair -] “Launce is still quibbling. He is now running down the hare that he started when he entered."MALONE.

Val. No Valentine, indeed, for sacred Silvia! Bid him make haste, and meet me at the north Hath she forsworn me?

gate. Pro. No, Valentine.

Pro. Go, sirrah, find him out.

Come, VAL. NoValentine, if Silvia have forsworn me!

Valentine. What is your news ?

VAL. O my dear Silvia ! hapless Valentine ! Laun. Sir, there is a proclamation that you are

[Exeunt VALENTINE and PROTEUS. vanished.

Laun. I am but a fool, look you ; and yet I Pro. That thou art banished. O, that 's the have the wit to think my master is a kind of news;

a knave: but that's all one, if he be but one From hence, from Silvia, and from me, thy friend. knave. He lives not now that knows me to be in

VAL. O, I have fed upon this woe already, love: yet I am in love ; but a team of horse shall And now excess of it will make me surfeit.

not pluck that from me; nor who 't is I love, and Doth Silvia know that I am banished ?

yet ’t is a woman : but what woman, I will not tell Pro. Ay, ay; and she hath offer'd to the doom myself; and yet ’t is a milkmaid ; yet 't is not (Which, unrevers’d, stands in effectual force) a maid, for she hath had gossips : yet 't is a maid, A sea of melting pearl, which some call tears : for she is her master's maid, and serves for wages. Those at her father's churlish feet she tenderd; She hath more qualities than a water-spaniel, With them, upon her knees, her humble self ; which is much in a bare Christian. Here is the Wringing her hands, whose whiteness so became cate-log (pulling out a paper] of her conditions. them,

Imprimis, She can fetch and carry. Why, a As if but now they waxed pale for woe :

horse can do no more: nay, a horse cannot fetch,
But neither bended knees, pure hands held up, but only carry; therefore is she better than a jade.
Sad sighs, deep groans, nor silver-shedding tears, Item, She can milk ; look you, a sweet virtue in
Could penetrate her uncompassionate sire; a maid with clean hands.
But Valentine, if he be ta’en, must die.
Besides, her intercession chaf’d him so,
When she for thy repeal was suppliant,

Enter SPEED.
That to close prison he commanded her,
With many bitter threats of 'biding there.

SPEED. How now, signior Launce? what news Val. No more ; unless the next word that thou with your mastership? speak’st

Laun. With my master's ship? why, it is at sea. Have some malignant power upon my life ;

SPEED. Well, your old vice still ; mistake the If so, I pray thee, breathe it in mine ear,

word: What news then in your paper ? As ending anthem of my endless dolour.

LAUN. The blackest news that ever thou PRO. Cease to lament for that thou canst not

heard'st. help,

SPEED. Why, man, how black ? And study help for that which thou lament'st. Laun. Why, as black as ink. Time is the nurse and breeder of all good.

SPEED. Let me read them. Here if thou stay, thou canst not see thy love;

Laun. Fie on thee, jolt-head ! thou canst not Besides, thy staying will abridge thy life.

read. Hope is a lover's staff ; walk hence with that,

SPEED. Thou liest, I can. And manage it against despairing thoughts.

Laun. I will try thee: tell me this: Who Thy letters may be here, though thou art hence ;

begot thee? Which, being writ to me, shall be deliver'd

SPEED. Marry, the son of my grandfather. Even in the milk-white bosom of thy love.

LAUN. O illiterate loiterer! it was the son of thy The time now serves not to expostulate:

grandmother: this proves that thou canst not read. Come, I'll convey thee through the city gate ;

SPEED. Come, fool, come : try me in thy And, ere I part with thee, confer at large

paper. Of all that may concern thy love-affairs :

LAUN. There ; and St. Nicholas be thy As thou lov'st Silvia, though not for thyself, Regard thy danger, and along with me.

SPEED. Imprimis, She can milk. VAL. I pray thee, Launce, an if thou seest my

LAUN. Ay, that she can. boy,

SPEED. Item, She brews good ale.

speed ! (1)

If he be but one knave.] Warburton very plausibly proposed to read~"if he be but one kind." Something, however, leading to Launce's love confession, appears to have been omitted. Possibly the poet wrote, " But that's all one, if he be but one in love."

The second knave may have been repeated, repetition being a very common compositor's error, instead of the words in love, * which seem naturally enough to precede, “He lives not now that knows me to be in love."


LAUN. And thereof comes the proverb, -Blessing of your heart, you brew good ale.“

SPEED. Item, She can sew.
LAUN. That 's as much as to say, can she so ?
SPEED. Item, She can knit.

LAUN. What need a man care for a stock with a wench, when she can knit him a stock ?

SPEED: Item, She can wash and scour.

LAUN. A special virtue ; for then she need not be washed and scoured.

SPEED. Item, She can spin.
LAUN. Then


I set the world on wheels, when she can spin for her living.

SPEED. Item, She hath many nameless virtues.

LAUN. That 's as much as to say, bastard virtues; that, indeed, know not their fathers, and therefore have no names.

SPEED. Here follow her vices.
LAUN. Close at the heels of her virtues.

SPEED. Item, She is not to be fasting, in respect of her breath. Laun. Well

, that fault may be mended with a breakfast: Read on.

SPEED. Item, She hath a sweet mouth.

LAUN. That makes amends for her sour breath.

SPEED. Item, She doth talk in her sleep.

LAUN. It's no matter for that, so she sleep not in her talk.

SPEED. Item, She is slow in words.

LAUN. O villain, that set this down among her vices ! To be slow in words is a woman's only virtue: I pray thee, out with 't; and place it for her chief virtue.

SPEED. Item, She is proud.

LAUN. Out with that too; it was Eve's legacy, and cannot be ta'en from her.

SPEED. Item, She hath no teeth.

Laun. I care not for that neither, because I love crusts.

SPEED. Item, She is curst.

Laun. Well; the best is, she hath no teeth to bite.

SPEED. She will often praise her liquor.

Laun. If her liquor be good, she shall : if she will not, I will ; for good things should be praised.

SPEED. Item, She is too liberal.

Laun. Of her tongue she cannot ; for that 's writ down she is slow of: of her purse she shall not; for that I'll keep shut: now of another thing she may; and that cannot I help. Well, proceed.

SPEED. Item, She hath more hair than wit, and more faults than hairs, and more wealth than faults.

* You brew good ale. ]

“ Our ale's o' the best,

And each good guest
Prays for their souls that brew it."

Masque of Augurs, Ben Jonson.

b She is not to be fasting,-) So the folio. The word kissed, which is found in the inodern editions, was added by Rowe.

e She hath a sweet mouth.) As we now say, a liquorish loota. d More hair than wit,-) À well-known old English proverb. Steevens has given many instances of its occurrence in the old writers,

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Laun. Stop there; I 'll have her: she was Pro. Gone, my good lord. mine, and not mine, twice or thrice in that last DUKE. My daughter takes his going grievously. article: rehearse that once more.

Pro. A little time, my lord, will kill that grief. SPEED. Item, She hath more hair than wit, DUKE. So I believe; but Thurio thinks not

Laun. More hair than wit,-it may be ; I 'll prove it. the cover of the salt hides the salt, and Proteus, the good conceit I hold of thee, therefore it is more than the salt; the hair that (For thou hast shown some sign of good desert,) covers the wit is more than the wit; for the Makes me the better to confer with thee. greater hides the less. What 's next?

Pro. Longer than I prove loyal to your grace, SPEED. And more faults than hairs,

Let me not live to look upon your grace. LAUN. That 's monstrous : 0, that that were DUKE. Thou know'st how willingly I would out!

effect SPEED. And more wealth than faults.

The match between sir Thurio and my daughter. LAUN. Why, that word makes the faults Pro. I do, my lord. gracious : well, I 'll have her: and if it be a DUKE. And also, I think, thou art not ignorant match, as nothing is impossible,

How she opposes her against my will. SPEED. What then ?

Pro. She did, my lord, when Valentine was Laun. Why, then will I tell thee,-that thy

here. master stays for thee at the north gate.

DUKE, Ay, and perversely she persévers so. SPEED. For me?

What might we do, to make the girl forget Laun. For thee? ay : who art thou ? he hath The love of Valentine, and love sir Thurio ? stayed for a better man than thee.

Pro. The best way is, to slander Valentine SPEED. And must I go to him ?

With falsehood, cowardice, and poor descent ; LAUN. Thou must run to him, for thou hast Three things that women highly hold in hate. stayed so long, that going will scarce serve the DUKE. Ay, but she 'll think that it is spoke turn.

in hate. SPEED. Why didst not tell me sooner ? 'pox Pro. Ay, if his enemy deliver it: of your love-letters !

[Exit. Therefore it must, with circumstance, be spoken Laun, Now will he be swinged for reading my By one whom she esteemeth as his friend. letter : an unmannerly slave, that will thrust him- DUKE. Then you must undertake to slander him. self into secrets !-I'll after, to rejoice in the boy's Pro. And that, my lord, I shall be loth to do: correction.

. 'T is an ill office for a gentleman ;

Especially, against his very friend.“

DUKE. Where your good word cannot advan

tage him,

SCENE II.-The same. A Room in the Duke's


Your slander never can endamage him ;
Therefore the office is indifferent,
Being entreated to it by your friend.

Pro. You have prevail’d, my lord : if I can

Enter Duke and THURIO; PROTEUS behind.

do it,

DUKE. Sir Thurio, fear not but that she will

love you,
Now Valentine is banish'd from her sight.

Thu. Since his exile she hath despis'd me most,
Forsworn my company, and rail'd at me,
That I am desperate of obtaining her.

Duke. This weak impress of love is as a figure
Trenched in ice; which with an hour's heat
Dissolves to water, and doth lose his form.
A little time will melt ber frozen thoughts,
And worthless Valentine shall be forgot.-
How now, sir Proteus ! Is your countryman,
According to our proclamation, gone?

By aught that I can speak in his dispraise,
She shall not long continue love to him.
But, say this weed her love from Valentine,
It follows not that she will love sir Thurio.
Thu. Therefore, as you unwind her love from

Lest it should ravel, and be good to none,
You must provide to bottom it on me ;o
Which must be done by praising me as much
As you in worth dispraise sir Valentine.
DUKE. And, Proteus, we dare trust you in this

Because we know, on Valentine's report,

· His very friend.] True friend. In modern phraseology, particular friend.

Say this weed-) Mr. Collier's corrector reads wean; and the same substitution was made by B. Victor in his alteration of this play, 1763.

To bottom it on me;] A bottom of thread every housewife is

familiar with:

“ A bottome for your silke it seems

My letters are become,
Which oft with winding off and on
Are wasted whole and some."

GRANGE's Garden, 1557. * Discover such integrity :) Malone supposed that a line following this had been lost. I rather suspect some corruption in the words such integrity.

You are already love's firm votary,

Forsake unsounded deeps to dance on sands. And cannot soon revolt and change your mind. After your dire lamenting elegies, Upon this warrant shall you have access

Visit by night your lady's chamber-window, Where you with Silvia may confer at large; With some sweet consort: to their instruments For she is lumpish, heavy, melancholy,

Tune a deploring dump: the night's dead silence And, for your friend's sake, will be glad of you ; Will well become such sweet complaining Where you may temper her, by your persuasion,

grievance : To hate young Valentine, and love my friend. This, or else nothing, will inherit her.

Pro. As much as I can do, I will effect:-- DUKE. This discipline shows thou hast been in But you, sir Thurio, are not sharp enough ;

love. You must lay lime, to tangle her desires,

Thu. And thy advice this night I'll put in By wailful sonnets, whose composed rhymes

practice. Should be full fraught with serviceable vows. Therefore, sweet Proteus, my direction-giver, DUKE. Ay, much is the force of heaven-bred Let us into the city presently poesy.

To sort some gentlemen well skill'd in music : Pro. Say that upon the altar of her beauty I have a sonnet that will serve the turn, You sacrifice your tears, your sighs, your heart. To give the onset to thy good advice. Write till your ink be dry; and with your tears DUKE. About it, gentlemen. Moist it again ; and frame some feeling line, Pro. We 'll wait upon your grace till after That may discover such integrity :

supper; For Orpheus' lute was strung with poets' sinews; And afterward determine our proceedings. Whose golden touch could soften steel and stones, DUKE. Even now about it: I will pardon you. Make tigers tame, and huge leviathans


b With some sweet consort :) Consort is the reading of the old copy, and is certainly correct. The modern editors, for the most

part, read concert. Consort, in Shakespeare's time, appears to have been used as we use the word band, a set or company of musicians.

c Will inherit her.] That is, "obtain possession of her," Steevens says.

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