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Isab. 'Tis set down so in heaven, but not in earth.
Ang. Say you so ? Then I shall pose you quickly. Which had you rather, that the most just law Now took your brother's life; or, to redeem him, Give up your body to such sweet uncleanness, As she that he hath stained ? Isab.
Sir, believe this, I had rather give my body than my soul.
Ang. I talk not of your soul : our compelled sins Stand more for number than account. Isab.
How say you?
Please you to do't,
Ang. Pleased you to do't, at peril of your soul,
Isab. That I do beg his life, if it be sin,
Nay, but hear me:
Isab. Let me be ignorant, and in nothing good, But graciously to know I am no better.
Ang. Thus wisdom wishes to appear most bright, When it doth tax itself! as these black masks Proclaim an enshield beauty ten times louder Than beauty could displayed. — But mark me; To be received plain, I'll speak more gross: Your brother is to die.
Ang. And his offence is so, as it appears Accountant to the law upon that pain.
Ang. Admit no other way to save his life,
would much for mye terms of ear as rubies
Whose credit with the judge, or own great place,
Isab. As much for my poor brother, as myself:
Then must your brother die.
Ang. Were not you then as cruel as the sentence
Isab. Ignominy in ransom, and free pardon,
Ang. You seemed of late to make the law a tyrant;
Isab. O pardon me, my lord; it oft falls out,
Ang. We are all frail.
Else let my brother die,
Nay, women are frail, too.
I think it well :
them. Ná men their be forms.
That is, a woman; if you be more, you're none:
Isab. I have no tongue but one: gentle my lord,
Ang. Plainly conceive, I love you.
Isab. My brother did love Juliet; and you tell me, That he shall die for it.
Ang. He shall not, Isabel, if you give me love.
Isab. I know, your virtue hath a license in't,
Believe me, on mine honor,
Isab. Ha! Little honor to be much believed, And most pernicious purpose ! - Seeming, seeming ! I will proclaim thee, Angelo; look for’t: Sign me a present pardon for my brother, Or, with an outstretch'd throat, I'll tell the world, Aloud, what man thou art. . Ang.
Who will belive thee, Isabel ? My unsoiled name, the austereness of my life, My vouch against you, and my place i' the state, Will so your accusation overweigh, That you shall stifle in your own report, And smell of calumny. I have begun; And now I give my sensual race the rein : Fit thy consent to my sharp appetite; Lay by all nicety, and prolixious blushes, That banish what they sue for; redeem thy brother By yielding up thy body to my will; Or else he must not only die the death, But thy unkindness shall his death draw out To lingering sufferance: answer me to-morrow, Or, by the affection that now guides me most, I'll prove a tyrant to him: as for you, Say what you can, my false o'erweighs your true. [Exit.
Isab. To whom shall I complain? Did I tell this, Who would believe me? O perilous mouths, That bear in them one and the self-same tongue, Either of condemnation or approof! Bidding the law make courtesy to their will; Hooking both right and wrong to the appetite, To follow as it draws! I'll to my brother: Though he hath fallen by prompture of the blood,
Who Wear in them. tion or approdo their willite
Yet hath he in him such a mind of honor,
SCENE I. A Room in the Prison.
Enter Duke, CLAUDIO, and Provost.
Claud. The miserable have no other medicine,
Duke. Be absolute for death; either death or life
For thine own bowels, which do call thee sire,
I humbly thank you..
Enter ISABELLA. Isab. What ho! Peace here; grace and good company! Prov. Who's there? Come in; the wish deserves a
welcome. Duke. Dear sir, ere long I'll visit you again. Claud. Most holy sir, I thank you. . Isab. My business is a word or two with Claudio. Prov. And very welcome. Look, seignior, here's your
sister. Duke. Provost, a word with you. Prov.
As many as you please. Duke. Bring me to hear them speak, where I may be
concealed, Yet hear them.
[Exeunt Duke and Provost. Claud. Now, sister, what's the comfort ?
Isab. Why, as all comforts are, most good indeed :
Is there no remedy?
But is there any?