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Dark-working sorcerers that change the mind,
Soul-killing witches that deform the body,
Disguised cheaters, prating mountebanks,
And many such-like liberties of sin :
If it prove so, I will be gone the sooner.
I'll to the Centaur, to go seek this slave
I greatly fear my money is not safe.


102 liberties of sin] Hanmer reads libertines. Steevens explains "licensed offenders." Malone gives the more probable interpretation, "licentious actions."








nor the slave return'd,

That in such haste I sent to seek his master!

Sure, Luciana, it is two o'clock.
Luc. Perhaps some merchant
hath invited him,

And from the mart he's some-
gone to dinner.

Good sister, let us dine, and
never fret:

A man is master of his liberty:

Time is their master; and when they see time,

They 'll go or come: if so, be patient, sister.

ADR. Why should their liberty than ours be more? 10
Luc. Because their business still lies out o' door.

ADR. Look, when I serve him so, he takes it ill.
Luc. O, know he is the bridle of your will.

ADR. There's none but asses will be bridled so.
Luc. Why, headstrong liberty is lash'd with woe.
There's nothing situate under heaven's eye
But hath his bound, in earth, in sea, in sky:
The beasts, the fishes, and the winged fowls,
Are their males' subjects and at their controls:
Men more divine, the masters of all these,
Lords of the wide world and wild watery seas,
Indued with intellectual sense and souls,
Of more pre-eminence than fish and fowls,
Are masters to their females, and their lords:
Then let your will attend on their accords.

ADR. This servitude makes you to keep unwed.
Luc. Not this, but troubles of the marriage-bed.
ADR. But, were you wedded, you would bear some


Luc. Ere I learn love, I 'll practise to obey.


ADR. How if your husband start some other where? 30 Luc. Till he come home again, I would forbear.

ADR. Patience unmoved! no marvel though she


They can be meek that have no other cause.
A wretched soul, bruised with adversity,
We bid be quiet when we hear it cry;

But were we burden'd with like weight of pain,
As much, or more, we should ourselves complain :
So thou, that hast no unkind mate to grieve thee,
With urging helpless patience wouldst relieve me;

34-37] The identical sentiment is repeated in Much Ado, V, i, 20–31.

But, if thou live to see like right bereft,
This fool-begg'd patience in thee will be left.
Luc. Well, I will marry one day, but to try.
Here comes your man; now is your husband nigh.

Enter DROMIO of Ephesus

ADR. Say, is your tardy master now at hand? DRO. E. Nay, he's at two hands with me, and that my two ears can witness.

ADR. Say, didst thou speak with him? know'st thou his mind?

DRO. E. Ay, ay, he told his mind upon mine ear: Beshrew his hand, I scarce could understand it.


Luc. Spake he so doubtfully, thou couldst not feel 50 his meaning?

DRO. E. Nay, he struck so plainly, I could too well feel his blows; and withal so doubtfully, that I could scarce understand them.

ADR. But say, I prithee, is he coming home?

It seems he hath great care to please his wife.

DRO. E. Why, mistress, sure my master is horn-mad. ADR. Horn-mad, thou villain!


But, sure, he is stark mad.

I mean not cuckold-mad;

41 fool-begg'd] admittedly or notoriously foolish. There is an allusion to the custom of begging or petitioning for the guardianship of any one who was admitted to be a fool. Here patience is personified as the "fool" whose guardianship is begged.

54 understand] stand under: a poor quibble. Cf. Two Gent., II, v, 28.

When I desired him to come home to dinner,

He ask'd me for a thousand marks in gold :


""T is dinner-time," quoth I; " My gold!" quoth he:
"Your meat doth burn," quoth I; "My gold!" quoth he:
"Will you come home?" quoth I; "My gold!" quoth he,
"Where is the thousand marks I gave thee, villain?”
"The pig," quoth I," is burn'd ;"" My gold!" quoth he:
"My mistress, sir," quoth I; " Hang up thy mistress!
I know not thy mistress; out on thy mistress!"

Luc. Quoth who?

DRO. E. Quoth my master:

"I know," quoth he, "no house, no wife, no mistress."
So that my errand, due unto my tongue,

I thank him, I bare home upon my shoulders;
For, in conclusion, he did beat me there.

ADR. Go back again, thou slave, and fetch him home.
DRO. E. Go back again, and be new beaten home?
For God's sake, send some other messenger.

ADR. Back, slave, or I will break thy pate across.
DRO. E. And he will bless that cross with other


Between you I shall have a holy head.

ADR. Hence, prating peasant! fetch thy master home. DRO. E. Am I so round with you as you with me, That like a football you do spurn me thus?

80 holy head] The quibble on cross suggests the punning use of holy in the sense of "full of holes."

82 round] blunt, outspoken. Cf. Hamlet, III, i, 191. The word quibblingly suggests football and leather in 83 and 85.

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