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A bitter rivalry existed between the governments of Ephesus and Syracuse : so that a Merchant of either city, if he was found in the other, could legally be put to death-unless he was prepared to pay a ransom of a thousand marks.
Ægeon, a Merchant of Syracuse, had been arrested for such a violation of the law; and he is now on his trial before the Duke of Athens himself, in his Palace at Ephesus. The prisoner addresses the Duko: Ægeon. , Proceed, Solinus, to procure my fall;
And, by the doom of 'death, end woes and all.
The enmity and discord, which of late
Therefore, by , law, thou art condemned to die.
My 'woes end likewise, with the evening sun. Duke. Well, Syracusan : Say, in brief, the 'cause
Why thou departedst from thy native home.
In Syracusa was I born, and wed,
A poor mean woman' was delivered a The value of the English (gold) mark was about 13s. 4d. sterling ($3.221;--the German (silver) mark, 1s. Ad. st. ($0.32). 10. R. Syracnsians. copposing, hostile. roperty, possession.
(now Durazzo) a town of Macedonia, on the Adriatic, fO, R. a meane woman was deliuréd.
Of such a burden,-male twins, both alike :
To tell sad stories of my 'own mishaps.
Do me the favour to dilate at full
a 0, R. of two such boyes.
bO. R. motions.
ready to sink. d O. R. for the latter borne.
e O. R. one of the other twins. fonce a famous city of Greece (on the Morea) but now a squalid village. 80. R. discoueréd. h with speed. 10. R. helpefull. j deprived (bereft).
k what haue befalne of them and they.
Æge. My 'youngest boy, and yet my eldest 'care,
At eighteen years, became inquisitive
Could all my travels warrant me 'they live.
Against my crown, my oath, my dignity,
And 'live ;-if no, then thou art doomed to 'die !
But to 'procrastinate his life's sad end. Old Ægeon little knows, while he is anxiously looking for aid in Ephesus, that both his sons, and their respective servants, are all in the city.
It must be remembered that Ægeon's sons, alike in features and person, are both named Antipholus; and that the twin servants are both called Dromio. The first-born of Ægeon's twin sons had been a citizen of Ephesus foi more than twenty years, was married, and had settled as a Merchant there. That very day, his brother Antipholus (of Syracuse) arrived in the city, and would have incurred the same peril as his father, (the unrecognized Ægeon,) had he not followed the advice of a friendly Merchant—with whom, attended by his servant Dromio, he is now conversing in the Street. The Merchant says: Mer. Therefore, give-out" you are of 'Epidamnum,
Lest that your goods too soon be confiscate.
* O. R. so. b being deprived (bereft). CO. R. in the quest. d with earnest affection.
60. R. helpe. 'proceed on his way. 80. R. livelesse. h state publicly.
And, not being able to buy-out his life,
There is your money that I had to keep.
And 'stay there, Dromio, till I come to thee.
Get thee away.
your word, And go 'indeed, -having so rich a purse. Ant. S. A 'trusty servant, sir, that, very oft,
When I am dull with care and melancholy,
Inn and 'dine with me?
At 'five o'clock, we'll meet upon the 'Mart;
Sir, I commend you to your own content.
Commends me to the thing I cannot 'get.
In quest of 'them, unhappy, lose 'myself. To his surprise he sees his Servant (as he supposes) come back, but it is Dromio of Ephesus.
What now? How chance thou art returned so soon? Dro. E. Returned so 'soon! Rather approached too 'late.
The capon burns,—the pig falls from the spit,---
10. R. good a meane. 10. R. falling.
a house of entertainment.
CO. R. villaine,
Are penitent,* for your default, to-day.
left the money that I gave you? Dro. E.... 0,—sixpence, that I had, o'' Wednesday last,
To pay the saddler for my mistress' crupper?
The saddler 'had it, sir; I kept it not.
Tell me,-and dally not,-'where is the money?
So great a charge from thine 'own custody?
I, from my mistress, come to you in post :-
And 'strike you home, 'without a messenger.
Ι Dro. E. To 'me, sir? why, you gave 'no gold to me. Ant. S. Come on, sir knave; have done your foolishness,
And tell me 'how thou hast disposed thy charge? Dro. E. My charge was but to fetch you from the Mart
Home to your house—the “Phænix,"& sir—to dinner.
My mistress, and her sister, stay for you.
In 'what safe place bave you bestowed my money?
Where are the thousand marks thou hadst of me? Dro. E. ... I have 'some marks of yours upon my 'pate :
Some of my 'mistress' marks upon my 'shoulders,
Perchance you will not bear them patiently.
thou? Dro. E. Your worship's 'wife, my mistress, at the “Phoe
a doing penance.
cin haste. d a wooden block, or tally-board, on which debts were marked.
e stomach. 10. R. cooke. 8 another hostelry in Ephesus. h stowed away, deposited. pate, head.