« AnteriorContinuar »
ALL'S WELL THAT ENDS WELL.
PERSONS REPRESENTED. King of France.
Helena, a gentlewoman, protected by the countessi Duke of Florence,
An old Widow of Florence. Bertram, count of Rousillon.
Diana, daughter to the widow. Lafey, an old lord.
Violenta, Pamolles, a follower of Bertram.
Mariana;} neighbours and friends to the widow. Several yeung French Lords, that serve with Bertram in the Florentine war.
Lords, attending on the king; Oficers, Soldiers, Gri Stward) servants to the countess of Rousillon.
French and Florentine.
SCENE-Partly in France, and partly in Tuscany.
In delivering my son from me, I bury a second
her education promises : her dispositions she inherits,
which make fair gifts fairer; for where an unclean SCENE 1.-Rousillon. A Room in the fountess's Pal- mind carries virtuous qualities, there commendations ae. Enter Bertram, the Countess of Rousillon, He
go with pity, they are virtues and traitors too ; in her lena, and Lafeu, in mourning.
they are the better for their simpleness; she derives Countess.
her honesty, and achieves her goodness.
Laf. Your commendations, madam, get from her
Count. 'Tis the best brine a maiden can season her Ber. And I, in going, madam, weep o'er my father's || praise in. The remembrance of her father never apdeath anew : but I must attend his majesty's com proaches her heart, but the tyranny of her sorrows rand, to whom I am now in ward, evermore in sub- takes all livelihood from her cheek.- No more of this, jection.
Helena, go to, no more ; lest it be rather thought you Laf. You shall find of the king a husband, madam ; || affect a sorrow, than to have. -Fou, sir, a father: He that so generally is at all times Hel. I do affect a sorrow, indeed, but I have it too. good, must of necessity hold his virtue to you ; whose
Laf. Moderate lamentation is the right of the dead, Worthiness would stir it up where it wanted, rather | excessive grief the enemy to the living. than lack it where there is such abundance.
Count. If the living be enemy to the grief, the exCount. What hope is there of his majesty's amend
cess makes it soon mortal. Talent?
Ber. Madam, I desire your holy wishes. Lef. He hath abandoned his physieians, madam ;
Laf. How understand we that? under whose practices he hath persecuted time with
Count. Be thou blest, Bertram! and succeed thy fzhope: and finds no other advantage in the process but ther cally the losing of hope by time.
In manners, as in shape ! thy blood, and virtue, leurt. This young gentlewoman had a father, (0, || Contend for empire in thee; and thy goodness that had! how sad a passage 'tis!) whose skill was al Share with thy birth-right! Love all, trust a few, test as great as his honesty; had it stretched so far, | Do wrong to none: be able for thine enemy would have made nature immortal, and death shoukl Rather in power, than use; and keep thy friend kave play for lack of work. 'Would, for the king's Under thy own life's hey: be check'd for silence, abe, he were living ! I think, it would be the death of But never tax'd for speech. What heaven more will, the king's disease.
That thee may furnish, and my prayers pluck down, Laf. How called you the man you speak of, madam?
Fall on thy head ! Farewell.-My lord, Chint. He was famous, sir, in his profession, and it 'Tis an unseason'd courtier; good my lord, *as his great right to be so: Gerard de Narbon.
Advise him. Lif. He was excellent, indeed, madam; the king
Laf: He cannot want the best very lately spoke of him, admiringly, and mourning That shall attend his love. ly: he was skilful enough to have lived still, if knowl.
Count. Heaven bless him!-Farewell, Bertram. edge could be set up against mortality.
[Exit, Ber. What is it, my good loril, the king languishes
Ber. [To Hel.] The best wishes that can be forged
in your thoughts, be servants to you! Be comfortable Laf. A fistula, my loril.
to my mother, your mistress, and make much of lucr. Ber. I beard not of it before.
Laf. Farewell, pretty lady: You must hold the Laf. I would, it were not notorious.-Was this gen- | credit of your father.
[Err. Ber. anil Laf. the woman the danghter of Gerard de Narbon ?
Hel. O, were that all!--I think not on my father; Count. His sole child, my lorit ; and bequeathed to And these great tears grace his remembrance more, nay Grer looking. I bave those hopes of her good, that
Than those I shed for hiut. What was he like?
I have forgot him: my imagination
Hel. How might one do, sir, to lose it to her om Carries no favour in it, but Bertram's.
liking ? I am undone ; there is no living, none,
Par. Let me see : Marry, ill, to like him that ne'er If Bertran, be away. It were all one,
it likes. 'Tis a commodity will lose the gloss with lyThat I should love a bright particular star,
ing; the longer kept, the less worth: off with't, while And think to wed it, he is so above me:
'tis vendible : answer the time of request Virginity, In bis bright radiance and collateral light
like an old courtier, wears ber cap out of fashion ; Must I be comforted, not in his sphere.
richly suited, but unsuitable: just like the brooch and The ambitiou in my love thus plagues itself:
toothpick, which were not now: your date is better in The hind, that would be mated by the lion,
your pye and your porridge, than in your cheek: And Must die for love. 'Twas pretty, though a plague, your virginity, your old virginity, is like one of our To see him every hour; to sit and draw
French withered pears; it looks ill, it eats dryly; mar His arched brows, his hawking eye, his curls,
ry, 'tis a withered pear; it was formerly better ; marry, In our heart's table; heart, too capable
yet, 'tis a withered pear: Will you any thing with it? Of every line and trick of his sweet favour:
Hel. Not my virginity yet. But now he's gone, and my idolatrous fancy
There shall your master have a thousand loves,
A mother, and a mistress, and a friend,
A phenix, captain, and an enemy,
A guide, a goddess, and a sovereign, One that goes with him : I love him for his sake;
A counsellor, a traitress, and a dear; And yet I know him a notorious liar,
His humble ambition, proud humility, Think him a great way fool, solely a coward ;
His jarring concord, and his discord dulcet, Yet these fix'd evils sit so fit io him,
His faith, his sweet disaster; with a world That they take place, when virtue's steely bones
Of pretty, fond, adoptious christendoms, Look bleak in the cold wind: withal, full oft we see
That blinking Cupid gossips. Now shall he Cold wisdom waiting on superfluous folly.
I know not what he shall :-God send bim well! Par. Save you, fair queen.
The court's a learning-place ;-and he is one Hel. And you, monarch.
Par. What one, i'faith? Par. No.
Hel. That I wish well.Tis pity Hel. And no.
Par. What's pity ? Par. Are you meditating on virginity?
Hel. That wishing well had not a body in't, Hel. Ay. You have some stain of soldier in you ; Which might be felt : that we, the poorer born, let me ask you a question: Man is enemy to virgini- || Whose baser stars do shut us up in wishes, ty; how may we barricado it against him?
Might with effects of them follow our friends, Par. Keep him out.
And show what we alone must think ; which never Hel. But he assails; and our virginity, though val
Returns us thanks. iant in the defence, yet is weak : unfold to us some
Enter a Page. warlike resistance. Par. There is none; man, sitting down before you,
Page. Monsieur Parolles, my lord calls for you. will undermine you, and blow you up.
[Exit Page. Hel. Bless our poor virginity from underminers, and Par. Little Helen, farewell; If I can remember thee, blowers up!-Is there no military policy, how virgins I will think of thee at court. might blow up men?
Hel. Monsieur Parolles, you were born under a char Par. Virginity, being blown down, man will quick- || itable star. lier be blown up: marry, in blowing him down again,
Par. Under Mars, L. with the breach yourselves made, you lose your city. Hel. I especially think, under Mars. It is not politic in the commonwealth of pature, to Par. Why under Mars ? preserve virginity. Loss of virginity is rational in Hel. Tbe wars have so kept you under, that you erease; and there was never virgin got, till virginity must needs be born under Mars. was first lost. That, you were made of, is metal to
Par. When he was prelominant. make virgins. Virginity, by being once lost, may be
Hel. When he was retrograde, I think, rather. ten times found; by being ever kept, it is ever lost : Par. Why think you so ? 'tis too cold a companion ; away with it.
Hel. You go so much backward, when you fight. Hdl. I will stand for't a little, though therefore I die Par. That's for advantage. a virgin.
Hel. So is running away, when fear proposes the Par. There's little can be said in't; 'tis against the safety : But the composition, that your valour and jule of nature. To speak on the part of virginity, is fear makes in you, is a virtue of a good wing, and I to accuse your mothers; which is most infallible dis like the wear well. obedience. He, that hangs himself, is a virgin : vir. Par. I am so full of businesses, I cannot answer thee ginity murders itself"; and should be buried in biglr | acutely : I will return perfect courtier; in the which, ways, out of all sanctified limit, as a desperate offend my instruction sluall serve to naturalize thee, so thou ress against nature. Virginity breeds mites, much like wilt be capable of a courtier's connse), and understand a cheese ; consumes itself to the very paring, and so what advice shail thrust upon thee ; else thou diest in dies with feeding his own stomach. Besides, virginity I thine unthankfulness, and thine ignorance makes thee is peevish, proud, idle, made of self-love, which is the away ;
farewell. When thou hast leisure, say thy most inhibited sin in the canon. Keep it not ; you prayers ; when thou hast none, remember thy friends : cannot choose but lose by't : Out withit: within ten get thee a good husband, and use him as he tases thee : years it will make itself ten), which is a goodly increase; so farewell.
[Erit. and the principal itself not much the worse : Away Hel. Our remcilies oft in ourselves do lie, with to
Which we ascribe to heaven : the fated shy
Give us free scope ; only, doth backward pull But goers backward.
His good remembrance, sir, What power is it, which mounts my love so high ; Lies richer in your thoughts, than on his tomb; That makes me see, and cannot feed mine eye? So in approof lives not his epitaph, The mightiest space in fortune nature brings As in your royal speech. To join like likes, and kiss like native things.
King. 'Would, I were with him! He would always say, Impossible be strange attempts, to those
(Methinks I hear him now ; his plausive words
Thus his good melancholy oft began,
of younger spirits, whose anprehensive senses
All but nerv things disdain ; whose judgements are letters ; Lords and others attending.
Mere fathers of their garments; whose constancies King. The Florentines and Senoys are by the ears ;
Expire before their fashions :- This he wish'd :
Since I nor wax, nor honey, can bring home, 1 Lord So 'tis reported, sir.
I quickly were dissolved from my hive,
You are loved, sir ; With caution, that the Florentine will move us
They, that least lend it you, shall lack you first. For spedy aid ; wherein our dearest friend
King. I fill a place, I know't.-How long is't, count, Pre udicates the business, and would seem
Since the physician at your father's died ? Te best us make denial.
He was much fam'd. 1 Lord. His love and wisdom,
Some six months since, my lord. Approved so to your majesty, may plead
King. If he were living, I would try him yet ;For amplest credence.
Lend me an arm;-the rest have worn me out King.
He hath arm'd our answer, With several applications :-nature and sickness And Florence is denied, before he comes :
Debate it at their leisure. Welcome, count ; Pet, for our gentlemen, that mean to see
My son's no dearer. The Tuscan service, freely have they leave
Thank your majesty. To stand on either part.
[Exeunt. Flourish. 2 Lord.
It may well serve A nursery to our gentry, who are sick
SCENE III.-Rousillon. A Room In the Countesi's For breathing and exploit.
Palace. Enter Countess, Stercard, and Clown. King. What's he comes here?
Count. I will now hear : what say you of this genEnter Bertram, lzfeu, and Parolles.
tlewoman? i Lord. It is the count Rousillon, my good lord, Stew. Madam, the care I have had even to yonr consang Bram.
tent, I wish might be found in the calendar of may past Ring.
Youth, thou bear'st thy father's face ; endeavours; for then we wound our modesty, and make Frunk nature, rather curious than in haste,
foul the clearness of our deservings, when of oursclves Hath well compos'd thee. Thy father's moral parts we publish them. May'st thou inherit too! Welcome to Parise
Count. What does this knave bere? Get you gone, Ber. My thanks and duty are your majesty's. sirrah : The complaints, I have heard of you, I do not King. I would I had that corporal soundness now, all believe ; 'tis my slowness, that I do not : for, I As when thy father, and myself, in friendship know, you lack not folly to commit them, and have First try our soldiership! He did look far
ability enough to make such knaveries yours. Inta the service of the time, and was
Clo. 'Tis not unknown to you, madam, I am a poor Discipled of the bravest: he lasted long ;
fellow. But on us both did haggish age steal on,
Count. Well, sir. And wore us out of act. It much repairs me
Clo. No, madam, 'tis not so well, that I am poor ; Ta tak of your good father : In his youth
though many of the rieh are damned : But, if I may He had the wit, which I can well observe
have your ladyship's good will to go to the world, IsToday in our young lords ; but they may jest, bel the woman and I will do as we may. Tall their own scorn return to them unnoter,
Count. Wilt thou needs be a beggar? Eze they can hide their levity in honour.
Clo. I do beg your good will in this case. S like a courtier, contempt nor bitterness
Count. In what case ? Were in his pride or sharpness ; if they were,
Clo. In Isbel's case, and mine own. Service is no His equal had awak'd them ; and his honour, heritage : and, I think, I shall never have the blessing Clack to itself, knew the true minute when
of God, till I have issue of my body; for, they say, Exception bid him speak, and, at this time,
bearns are blessings is tongue obey'd his hand : who were below him Count. Tell me the reason why thou wilt mairy. He od as creatures of another place ;
Clo. My poor body, madam, requires it : I am drive And bow'd his eminent top to their low ranks, en on by the flesh; and he must needs go, that the Hiking the proud of his hunility,
devil drives. In their poor praise he humbled : Such a man Count. Is this all your worship's reason? Mazte be a copy to these younger times ;
Clo. Faith, madam, I have other holy reasons, such Whit, folsw'd well, would demonstrate thenn now as they are.
Count. May the world know them?
is more owing her, than is paid; and more shall be paid Clo. I have been, madam, a wicked crcature, as you || her, than she'll demand. and all flesh and blood are ; and, indeed, I do marry, Stew. Madam, I was very late more near her than, I that I may repent.
think, she wished me : alone she was, and did commuCount. Thy marriage, sooner than thy wickedness. nicate to herself, her own words to her own ears ; she
Clo. I am out of friends, madam; and I hope to bave thought, I dare vow for her, they touched not any friends for my wife's sake.
stranger sense. Her matter was, she loved your son : Count. Such friends are thine enemies, knave.
she said, was no goddess, that had put such Clo. You are shallow, madam ; e'en great friends ; difference betwixt their two estates; Love, no god, that for the knaves come to do that for me, which I am a would not extend his might, only where qualities were weary of. He, that ears my land, spares my team, and level ; Diana, no queen of virgins, that would suffer gives me leave to in the crop : if I be his cuckold, her poor knight to be surprised, without rescue in the he's my drudge : He, that comforts my wife, is the first assault, or ransome afterward: This she delivered cherisher of my flesh and blood; he, that cherishes my in the most bitter touch of sorrow, that e'er I heard flesh and blood, loves my flesh and blood ; he, that virgin exclaim in : which I held my duty, speedily to loves my flesh and blood, is my friend : ergo, he that acquaint you withal ; sithence, in the loss that may kisses my wife, is my friend. If men could be content happen, it concerns you something to know it. ed to be what they are, there were no fear in marriage; Count. You have discharged this bonestly; keep it for young Charbon the puritan, and old Poysam the to yourself: many likelihoods informed me of this bepapist, howsoe'er their hearts are severed in religion, | fore, which hung so tottering in the balance, that I their heads are both one ; they may joll horns togeth could neither believe, nor misdoubt : Pray you, leave er, like any deer i' the herd.
me: stall this in your bosom, and I thank you for Count. Wilt thou ever be a foul-mouthed and calum
your honest care: I will speak with you further anon. nious knave?
[Exit Sleward. Clo. A prophet I, madam ; and I speak the truth
Enter Helena. the next way:
Count. Even so it was with me, when I was young: For I the ballad will repeat,
If we are nature's, these are ours ; this thorn
Doth to our rose of youth rightly belong;
Our blood to us, this to our blood is born ;
It is the show and seal of nature's truth,
By our remeinbrances of days foregone, Stew. May it please you, madam, that he bid Helen
Such were our faults ;-or then we thought them none. come to yoll; of her I am to speak.
Her eye is sick on't; I observe her now. Count. Sirrah, tell my gentlewoman, I would speak Hel. What is your pleasure, madam! with her; Helen I mean.
You know, Helen, Clo. Was this fair face the cause, quoth she, [Singing. I am a mother to you. Why the Grerians sacked Troy?
Hel. Mine honourable mistress. * Fond done, done fond,
Nay, a mother; Was this king Priam's joy?
Why not a mother? When I said, a mother, irith that she sighed as she stood,
Methought you saw a serpent: What's in mother,
That you start at it? I say, I am your mother;
And put you in the catalogue of those
That were enwombed mine: 'Tis often seen,
Adoption strives with nature; and choice breeds
A native slip to us froin foreign seeds:
Yet I express to you a mother's care:-
That I am not. lottery well; a man may draw his heart out, ere he Count. I say, I am your mother. pluck one.
Pardon, madam; Count. You'll be gone, sir knave, and do as I com The count Rousillon cannot be my brother; mand you ?
I am from humble, he from honour'd name ; Cio. That man should be at woman's command, and No note upon my parents, his all noble: yet no hurt done! Though honesty be no puritan, yet My master, my dear lord he is; and I it will do no hurt; it will wear the surplice of humility His servant live, and will his vassal die: over the black gown of a big heart. I am going, for He must not be my brother. sooth: the business is for Helen to come hither. [Erit. Count.
Nor I your mother? Count. Well, now.
Hel. You are my mother, madam; 'Would you were Stew. I know, madam, you love your gentlewoman (So that my lord, your son, were not my brother.) entirely.
Indeed, my mother!-or were you both our mothers Count. Faith, I do: her father bequeathed her to I care no more for, than I do for heaven, me ; and she herself, without other advantage, may So I were not his sister: Can't no other, lawfully make title to as much love as she finds: there But, I your daughter, he must be my brother?
The king is renderd fost.
This was your motive
Hel. My lord your son made me to think of this ; Else Paris, and the medicine, and the king, Had, from the conversation of my thoughts, Haply, been absent then. Cotint.
But think you, Helen, If you should tender your supposed aid, He would receive it? He and his physicians Are of a mind; he, that they cannot help him, They, that they cannot help: How shall they credit A poor unlearned virgin, when the schools, Embowelld of their doctrine, have left off The danger to itself? Hel.
There's something hints, More than my father's skill, which was the greatest of his profession, that his good receipt Shall, for my legacy, be sanctified By the luckiest stars in heaven : and would your hop
But give me leave to try success, I'd venture
Dost thou believe't ?
Coun. Yes, Helen, you might be my daughter-in
law; Gnd shield, you mean it not! daughter, and mother, So strive upon your pulse: What, påle again? My fear hath catel d your fondness : Now I see The mystery of your loneliness, and find Yeur al tears' head. Now to all sense 'tis gross, You love my son ; invention is asham d, Against the proclamation of thy passion, To say, thou dost pot : therefore tell me true ; Bet tell me then, 'uis so :-for, look, thy cheeks Confess it, one to the other; and thine eyes See it so grossly shown in thy behaviours, That in their kind they speak it: only sin And hellish obstinacy tie thy tongue, That truth should be suspected · Speak, is't so? If it be se, you have wound a goolly clue ; If it fr not, forswear't: howe'er, I charge thee, As beaven shall work in me for thine avail, To tell me truly. Hel.
Good madam, pardon me! Crunt. Do you love my son ?
Your pardon, noble mistress ! Ceant. Love you my son? Hei.
Do not you love him, madam?
Then, I confess,
Court. Had you not lately an intent, speak truly, To go to Paris?
Hels Madam, I had.
Wherefore? tell true.
SCENE I.- Paris. A Room in the King's Palace.
Flourish. Enter King, with young Lords taking leave for the Florentine war ; Bertram, Parolles, and Attendants.
It is our hope, sir,
King. No, no, it cannot be ; and yet my heart
2 Lord. Health, at your bidding, serve your majesty!
King. Those girls of Italy, take heed of them;
Our hearts receive your warnings.
(The King retires to a coucha 1 Lord. Omy sweet lorrl, that you will stay behind us.