ePub 版

With caution, that the Florentine will move us
For speedy aid ; wherein our dearest friend
Prejudicates the business, and would seem
To have us make denial.
1 Lord.

His love and wisdom,
Approv'd so to your majesty, may plead
For amplest credence.

He hath arm’d our answer,
And Florence is denied before he comes :
Yet, for our gentlemen, that mean to see
The Tuscan service, freely have they leave
To stand on either part.
2 Lord.

It may well serve
A nursery to our gentry, who are sick
For breathing and exploit.

What’s he comes here?
1 Lord. It is the count Rousillon, my good lord,
Young Bertram.

King Youth, thou bear'st thy father's faca; Frank nature, rather curious than in haste, Hath well compos’d thee. Thy father's moral parts May'st thou inherit too! Welcome to Paris.

Ber. My thanks and duty are your majesty's.

King. I would I had that corporal soundness now, As when thy father, and myself, in friendship First tried our soldiership. He did look far Into the service of the time, and was Discipled of the bravest : he lasted long; But on us both did haggish age steal on, And wore us out of act. It much repairs me To talk of your good father. In his youth He had the wit, which I can well observe To-day in our young lords ; but they may jest, Till their own scorn return to them unnoted, Ere they can hide their levity in honour : So like a courtier, contempt nor bitterness Were in his pride, or sharpness; if they were, His equal had awak'd them: and his honour, Clock to itself, knew the true minute when Exception bid him speak, and at this time His tongue obey'd his hand : who were below him He us'd as creatures of another place, And bow'd his eminent top to their low ranks,

Vol. III.-15

Making them proud of his humility,
In their poor praise he humbled. Such a man
Might be a copy to these younger times,
Which, follow'd well, would demonstrate them now
But goers backward.

His good remembrance, sir,
Lies richer in your thoughts, than on his tomb:
So in approof lives not his epitaph,
As in your royal speech.
King. 'Would I were with him! He would always

say, (Methinks, I hear him now; his plausive words He scatter'd not in ears, but grafted them, To grow there, and to bear.)—“Let me not live," — Thus his good melancholy oft began, On the catastrophe and heel of pastime, When it was out, “let me not live," quoth he, "After my flame lacks oil, to be the snuff Of younger spirits, whose apprehensive senses All but new things disdain: whose judgments are Mere fathers of their garments; whose constancies Expire before their fashions." -- This he wish'd : I, after him, do after him wish too, Since I nor wax nor honey can bring home, I quickly were dissolved from my hive, To give some labourers room. 2 Lord.

You are lov’d, sir; They, that least lend it you, shall lack you first.

King. I fill a place, I know't.—How long is ’t, count, Since the physician at your father's died ? He was much fam’d. Ber.

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. SCENE III.-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 deservings, 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

I all believe : 't is 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. 'T is not unknown to you, madam, I am a poor fellow.

Count. Well, sir.

Clo. No, madam; 't is not so well, that I am poor, though many of the rich are damned. 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.
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 of my body, for they say, bairns are blessings.

Count. Tell me thy reason why thou wilt marry.

Clo. My poor body, madam, requires it: I am driven on by the flesh, and he must needs go that the devil drives.

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, as you and all flesh and blood are; and, indeed, I do marry that I may repent.

Count. Thy marriage, sooner than thy wickedness.

Clo. I am out o’ friends, madam; and I hope to have friends for my wife's sake.

Count. Such friends are thine enemies, knave.

Clo. You are shallow, madam ; e’eno great friends ; for the knaves come to do that for me, which I am a-weary of. He, that ears my land, spares my team, and gives me leave to inn the crop: if I be his cuckold,

1 To be married. ? The old copies : in.

he's my drudge. He that comforts my wife is the cherisher of my flesh and blood; he that cherishes my flesh and blood, loves my flesh and blood; he that loves my flesh and blood is my friend; ergo, he that kisses my wife is my friend. If men could be contented to be what they are, there were no fear in marriage ; for young Charbon the puritan, and old Poysam the papist, howsome'er their hearts are severed in religion, their heads are both one; they may joll horns together, like any deer i’ the herd.

Count. Wilt thou ever be a foul-mouthed and calum. nious knave?

Clo. A prophet I, madam; and I speak the truth the next? way:

For I the ballad will repeat,

Which men full true shall find;
Your marriage comes by destiny,

Your cuckoo sings by kind.
Count. Get you gone, sir : I'll talk with you more

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, quoth she, the cause,

Why the Grecians sacked Troy?
Fonds done, done fond,' good sooth it was ;

Was this King Priam's joy?
With that she sighed as she stood

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

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

sirrah. Clo. One good woman in ten, madam, which is a purifying o' the song', and mending o’ the sex. Would God would serve the world so all the year! we'd find no fault with the tithe-woman if I were the parson. One in ten, quoth a'! an we might have a good woman born—but one:_every blazing star, or at an earth





1 Nearest. 2 the cause, quoth she: in f. e.

3 Foolishly.

4 The rest of this line is not in f. e. 5 6 These lines are repeated in f. e. 7 The rest of this sentence not in f. e. 8 ere : in f. e

quake, 't would 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.

Count. Well, now.

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

Count. Faith, 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 ransom 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.

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 farther, anon.

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

If ever 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,

« 上一頁繼續 »