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Changes to a Forest in Wales, with a Cave.
Art. What should we speak of,
5 When we are as old as you? When we shall hear
A cell of ignorance; travelling abed;
To morning's holy office: The gates of monarchs
Guid. Hail, Heaven!
Bel. Now for our mountain sport: up to yon hill, 30
Bel. How you speak!
15 Did you but know the city's usuries,
And hath as oft a slanderous epitaph,
As record of fair act; nay, many times,
Guid. Uncertain favour!
Bel. My fault being nothing (as I have told you But that two villains, whose false oaths prevail'd Before my perfect honour, swore to Cymbeline, 40I was confederate with the Romans: So,
Follow'd my banishment; and these twenty years, This rock, and these demesnes, have been my world:
Where I have liv'd at honest freedom; pay'd
This fantastical expression means no more than sand in an hour-glass, used to measure time. 2 A franklin is literally a freeholder, with a small estate, neither villan, nor vassal. That is, "I can see neither one way nor other, before me nor behind me; but all the ways are covered with an impenetra ble fog." The idea of a giant was, among the readers of romances, who were almost all the readers of those times, always confounded with that of a Saracen. 'i. e. the beetle, whose wings are enclosed within two dry husks or shards. • Check may mean in this place a reproof; but it rather seems to signify command, controul. 'Dr. Johnson suspects, that the right reading of this passage is as follows: "Richer than doing nothing for a brabe."-Brabium is a badge of honour, or the ensign of an honour, or any thing worn as a mark of dignity. The word is found (he adds) in Holyoak's Dictionary, who terms it a reward; and that Cooper, in his Thesaurus, defines it to be a prize, or reward for any game. To overpass his bound.
These boys know little, they are sons to the king;
And every day do honour to her grave:
And you shall find me, wretched man, a thing
Imo. Thou told'st me, when we came from
Was near at hand:-Ne'er long'd my mother so
Thy mistress, Pisanio, hath play'd the strumpet in my bed; the testimonies whereof lie bleeding in me. I speak not out of weak surmises; but from proof us strong as my grief, and as certain as I expect my revenge. That part, thou, Pisanio, must act for me, if thy faith be not tainted with the breach of hers Let thine own hands take away her life: I shall give thee opportunity at Milford-Haven: she hath my letter for the purpose: Where, if thou fear to strike, and to make me certain it is done, thou art the pundar to her dishonour, and equally to me disloyal. Pisan. What, shall I need to draw my sword? the paper
Hath cut her throat already.No, 'tis slander;
Out-venoms all the worms of Nile; whose breath
To break it with a fearful dream of him,
And cry myself awake? that's false to his bed?
Pisan. Alas, good lady!
Imo. I false? Thy conscience witness:-Iachimo,
Pisan. Good madam, hear me.
From the inward of thee? One, but painted thus,
That drug-damn'd Italy 2 hath out-crafted him, And he's at some hard point.-Speak, man; thy tongue
May take off some extremity, which to read
Pisan. Please you, read;
Imo. True honest men being heard, like false
A little witness my obedience: Look!
1i. e. Thus meanly brought up :-Yet in this very cave, which is so low that they must bow or bend in entering it, yet are their thoughts so exalted, &c. This is another allusion to Italian poisons. Serpents and dragons by the old writers were called worms. Persons of highest rank. That is, Some jay of Italy, made by art the creature, not of nature, but of painting.—In his sense, painting may be not improperly termed her mother.
Thy master is not there; who was, indeed,
Pisan. Hence, vile instrument!
And if I do not by thy hand, thou art
That cravens my weak hand. Come, here's my
Do feel the treason sharply, yet the traitor
And thou, Posthumus, that diddest set up
A strain of rareness: and I grieve myself,
Pisan. O gracious lady!
Since I receiv'd command to do this business,
Imo. Do't, and to bed then.
Pisan. I'll wake mine eye-balls blind first.
Did'st undertake it? Why hast thou abus'd
The elected deer before thee?
To lose so bad employment: in the which
Pisan. Not so, neither:
But if I were as wise as honest, then
5 Some villain, ay, and singular in his art,
Pisan. Then, madam,
I thought you would not back again.
Imo. Most like;
Bringing me here to kill me.
Pisan. No, on my life.
I'll give but notice you are dead, and send him
Imo. Why, good fellow,
What shall I do the while? where bide? how 15 Or in my life what comfort, when I am Dead to my husband?
Pisan. If you'll back to the court,
Imo. No court, no father; nor no more ado
Pisan. If not at court,
Then not in Britain must you bide.
Imo. Where then?
25 Hath Britain all the sun that shines? Day, night, Are they not but in Britain? I' the world's volume Our Britain seems as of it, but not in it;
In a great pool, a swan's nest: Pr'ythee, think
Pisan. I am most glad
You think of other place. The embassador,
Imo. O, for such means!
Though peril to my modesty, not death on 't,
Pisan. Well, then here's the point:
Imo. Talk thy tongue weary; speak:
Nor tent to bottom that. But speak.
Your laboursome and dainty trims, wherein
Imo. Nay, be brief:
I see into thy end, and am almost 160A man already.
A hawk is said to tire upon that which he pecks; from tirer, French. * The meaning is, " You must disguise that greatness, which, to appear hereafter in its proper form, cannot yet appear without great danger to itself." i. e. with opportunities of examining your affairs with your own eyes.
Pisan. First, make yourself but like one. Fore-thinking this, I have already fit,
(Tis in my cloak-bag) doublet, hat, hose, all That answer to them: Would you in their serving, And with what imitation you can borrow From youth of such a season, 'fore noble Lucius Present yourself, desire his service, tell him Wherein you are happy, (which you'll make him know,
If that his head have ear in music) doubtless, Withjoy he will embrace you; for he's honourable, And, doubling that, most holy. Your means abroad You have me, rich; and I will never fail Beginning, nor supplyment.
Imo. Thou art all the comfort
The gods will diet me with. Pr'ythee, away:
Pisan. Well, madam, we must take a short fareLest, being miss'd, I be suspected of Your carriage from the court. My noble mistress, Here is a box; I had it from the queen; What's in 't is precious: if you are sick at sea, Or stomach-qualm'd at land, a drain of this Will drive away distemper.To some shade, And fit you to your manhood:-May the gods Direct you to the best! [Exeunt. 30
Imo. Amen: I thank thee.
My emperor hath wrote: I must from hence; And am right sorry, that I must report ye My master's enemy.
Cym. Our subjects, sir,
Will not endure his yoke; and for ourself
Luc. So, sir, I desire of you
Your valiant Britons have their wishes in it.
Cym. Lucius hath wrote already to the emperor
A conduct over land, to Milford-Haven.-
Queen. 'Tis not sleepy business;
But must be look'd to speedily, and strongly.
The Palace of Cymbeline.
Enter Cymbeline, Queen, Cloten, Lucius, and Lords. 35
Queen. Royal sir, Since the exile of Posthumus, most retir'd Hath her life been; the cure whereof, my lord, 'Tis time must do. 'Beseech your majesty, Forbear sharp speeches to her; She's a lady So tender of rebukes, that words are strokes, 25 And strokes death to her.
Re-enter the Servant.
Cymb. Where is she, sir? How Can her contempt be answer'd? Serv. Please you, sir,
[swer Her chambers are all lock'd; and there's no anThat will be given to the loud of noise we make. Queen. My lord, when last I went to visit her, She pray'd me to excuse her keeping close; Whereto constrain'd by her infirmity, She should that duty leave unpaid to you, Which daily she was bound to proffer: this She wish'd me to make known; but our great court Made me to blame in memory.
140]. Cym. Her doors lock'd?
Not seen of late? Grant, heavens, that, which I
Queen. Son, I say, follow the king.
Clot. That man of hers, Pisanio her old servant,
I have not seen these two days.
Pisanio, thou that stand'st so for Posthumus!-
Luc. Your hand, my lord.
Clot. Receive it friendly: but from this time forth I wear it as your enemy.
Luc. Sir, the event
Is yet to name the winner: Fare you well. [lords,
To death, or to dishonour; and my end
have the placing of the British crown.
Clot. 'Tis certain, she is fled:
Go in, and cheer the king; he rages, none
i. e. we'll make our work even with our time; we'll do what time will allow. inlisted and bound myself to it.
? i, e. I have
Queen. All the better: May
[Exit Queen. Clot. I love and hate her: for she's fair and royal;
And that she hath all courtly parts more exquisite
Come hither: Ah, you precious pandar! Villain,
Pisan. O, good my lord!
Clot. Where is thy lady? or, by Jupiter, I will not ask again. Close villain,
I'll have this secret from thy heart, or rip
Thy heart to find it. Is she with Posthumus?
Pisan. O, my all-worthy lord!
Discover where thy mistress is, at once,
Pisan. Then, sir,
This paper is the history of my knowledge
Clot. Let's see 't:-I will pursue her
Pisan. Or this, or perish.
Pisan. I'll write to my lord, she's dead. O,
Clot. Wilt thou serve me? For since patiently and constantly thou hast stuck to the bare fortune of that beggar Posthumus, thou canst not in the course of gratitude but be a diligent follower of nine. Wilt thou serve me?
Pisan. Sir, I will.
Clot. Give me thy hand, here's my purse. Hast any of thy late master's garments in thy possession? Pisan. I have, my lord, at my lodging, the 10 same suit he wore when he took leave of my lady and mistress.
Clot. The first service thou dost me, fetch that suit hither: let it be thy first service; go. Pisan. I shall, my lord.
[Exit. Clot. Meet thee at Milford-Haven :- -forgot to ask him one thing; I'll remember't anon: -Even there, thou villain Posthumus, will I kill thee.-I would, these garments were come. She said upon a time, (the bitterness of it I now 20 belch froni my heart) that she held the very garment of Posthumus in more respect than my noble and natural person, together with the adorn ment of my qualities. With that suit upon my back, will I ravish her: First kill him, and in her 25 eyes; there shall she see my valour, which will then be a torment to her contempt. He on the ground, my speech of insultment ended on his dead body, and when my lust hath dined, (which, as I say, to vex her, I will execute in 30 the clothes that she so prais'd) to the court I'll knock her back, foot her home again. She hath despis'd me rejoicingly, and I'll be merry in my revenge.
Pisan. She can scarce be there yet.
Clot. Bring this apparel to my chamber; that is
Were to prove false, which I will never be,
Safe may'st thou wander, safe return again!
Pisan. Sir, as I think.
Clot. It is Posthumus' hand; I know 't.-Sirrah, If thou would'st not be a villain, but do me true 55 service; undergo those employments, wherein I should have cause to use thee, with a serious industry, that is, what villainy soe'er I bid thee do, to perform it, directly and truly,-I would think thee an honest man: thou should'st neither 60 want my means for thy relief, nor my voice for thy preferment.
Pisan. Well, my good lord.
Re-enter Pisanio, with the clothes. 35 Be those the garments?
Pisan. Ay, my noble lord.
Clot. How long is 't since she went to MilfordHaven?
The Forest and Cave.
Enter Imogen, in boy's clothes.
Imo. I see, a man's life is a tedious one:
That is, I must either give him the paper freely, or perish in my attempt to keep it.