Imagens das páginas


Some six months since, my lord. King. If he were living, I would try him yet ; Lend me an arm ;

- the rest have worn me out With several applications: - nature and sickness Debate it at their leisure. Welcome, count; My son's no dearer. Ber.

Thank your majesty..

[Exeunt. Flourish.


Rousillon. A Room in the Countess's Palace.

Enter Countess, Steward, and Clown. Count. I will now hear : what say you of this gentlewoman?

Stew. Madam, the care I have had to even your content?, I wish might be found in the calendar of my past endeavours ; for then we wound our modesty, and make foul the clearness of our deserve ings, when of ourselves we publish them.

Count. What does this knave here? Get you gone, sirrah: The complaints, I have heard of you, I do not all believe; 'tis my slowness, that I do not : for, I know, you lack not folly to commit them, and have ability enough to make such knaveries yours.

Clo. 'Tis not unknown to you, madam, I am a poor fellow.

Count. Well, sir.

Clo. No, madam, 'tis not so well, that I am poor ; though many of the rich perish : But, if I may have your ladyship’s good will to go to the world , Isbel the woman and I will do as we may.

Count. Wilt thou needs be a beggar?
Clo. I do beg your good-will in this case.

8 To be married.

7 To act up to your desires.


Count. In what case ?

Clo. In Isbel's case, and mine own. Service is no heritage: and, I think, I shall never have the blessing of God, till I have issue; for, they say, bearns are blessings.

Count. Is this all your worship’s reason ?

Clo. Faith, madam, I have other holy reasons, such as they are.

Count. May the world know them ?

Clo. I have been, madam, a wicked creature; and, indeed, I do marry, that I may repent.

Count. Thy marriage, sooner than thy wickedness.

Clo. I am out of friends, madam; and I hope to have friends for


wife's sake. Count. Such friends are thine enemies, knave. Cló. You are shallow, madam ; e'en great friends.

Count. Get you gone, sir ; I'll talk with you anon.

Stew. May it please you, madam, that he bid Helen come to you; of her I am to speak.

Count. Sirrah, tell my gentlewoman, I would speak with her; Helen I mean. Clo. Was this fair face the cause, quoth she,

Why the Grecians sacked Troy?
Fond done', done fond,

Was this king Priam's joy.
With that she sighed as she stood,
With that she sighed as she stood,

this sentence then ;
Among nine bad if one be good,
Among nine bad if one be good,

There's yet one good in ten.
Count. What, one good in ten? you corrupt the

Clo. One good woman in ten, madam ; which is a purifying o' the song: 'Would Fortune serve the

song, sirrah.

9 Children.

1 Foolishly done.




[ocr errors]

world so all the year! we'd find no fault with the tythe-woman. One in ten, quoth a'! an we might have a good woman born but every blazing star, or at an earthquake, 'twould mend the lottery well; a man may draw his heart out, ere he pluck one.

Count. You'll be gone, sir knave, and do as I command you?

Clo. That man should be at woman's command, and yet no hurt done !—Though honesty be no puritan, yet it will do no hurt ; it will wear the surplice of humility over the black gown of a big heart.--I am going forsooth: the business is for Helen to come hither.

[Exit Clown. Count. Well, now.

Stew. I know, madam, you love your gentlewoman entirely.

Count. Indeed, I do: her father bequeathed her to me; and she herself, without other advantage, may lawfully make title to as much love as she finds : there is more owing her, than is paid ; and more shall be paid her, than she'll demand.

Stew. Madam, I was very late more near her than, I think, she wished me: alone she was, and did communicate to herself, her own words to her own ears ; she thought, I dare vow for her, they touched not any stranger sense. Her matter was, she loved your son: Fortune, she said, was no goddess, that had put such difference betwixt their two estates ; Love, no god, that would not extend his might, only where qualities were level ; Diana, no queen of virgins, that would suffer her poor knight to be surprised, without rescue, in the first assault, or ransome afterward : This she delivered in the most bitter touch of sorrow, that e'er I heard virgin exclaim in: which I held my duty, speedily to acquaint you withal ; sithence, in the loss that may happen, it concerns you something to know it.

[ocr errors][merged small]

Count. You have discharged this honestly; keep it to yourself: many likelihoods informed me of this before, which hung so tottering in the balance, that I could neither believe, nor misdoubt: Pray you, leave me; stall this in your bosom, and I thank you for your honest care: I will speak with you

further [Exit Steward.



Count. Even so it was with me, when I was young:

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, Where love's strong passion is impress'd in youth: By our remembrances of days foregone, Such were our faults

; or then we thought them



Her eye is sick on't ; I observe her now.

Hel. What is your pleasure, madanı ?

You know, Helen, I am a mother to you.

Hel. Mine honourable mistress.

Nay, a mother; Why not a mother ? When I said, a mother, Methought you saw a serpent : What's in mother, That you start at it? I say,


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 from foreign seeds :
You ne'er.oppress'd me with a mother's groan,
Yet I express to you a mother's care:-
Gramercy, maiden! does it curd thy.blood,
To say, I am thy mother ? What's the matter,
That this distemper'd messenger of wet,
The many-colour'd Iris, rounds thine eye?
Why? that you are my daughter?

That I am not,






Count. I say, I am your mother.

Pardon, madam; The count Rousillon cannot be


I am from humble, he from honour'd name ;
No note upon my parents, his all noble:
My master, my dear lord he is; and I
His servant live, and will his vassal die :
He must not be


brother. Count.

Nor I your mother? Hel. You are my mother, madam; 'Would you (So that my lord, your son, were not my brother,) Indeed, my mother !-or were you

both our mothers, So I were not his sister : Can't no other, But I, your daughter, he must be


brother ? Count. Yes, Helen, you might be my daughter

in-law ;
I hope you mean it not ! daughter, and mother,
So strive 3 upon your pulse: What, pale again?
My fear hath catch'd your fondness : Now I see
The mystery of your loneliness, and find
Your salt tears' head. 4 Now to all sense 'tis gross,
You love my son; invention is asham’d,
Against the proclamation of thy passion,
To say thou dost not : therefore tell me true;
But tell me then, 'tis 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 perverse obstinacy tie thy tongue,

That truth should be suspected: Speak, is't so ?
If it be so, you have wound a goodly clue;
If it be not, forswear't: howe'er, I charge thee
As heaven shall work in me for thine avail,
To tell me truly,

Good madam, pardon me!
Count. Do



my son ?

3 Contend.

4 The source, the cause of your grief.

« AnteriorContinuar »