With his next vantage.*

Be assur'd, madam,

Imo. I did not take my leave of him, but had
Most pretty things to say: ere I could tell him,
How I would think on him, at certain hours,
Such thoughts, and such; or I could make him swear
The she's of Italy should not betray

Mine interest, and his honour; or have charged him,
At the sixth hour of morn, at noon, at midnight,
To encounter me with orisons,† for then

I am in heaven for him: or ere I could
Give him that parting kiss, which I had set
Betwixt two charming words, comes in my father,
And, like the tyrannous breathing of the north,
Shakes all our buds from growing.


Doubting things go ill, often hurts more
Than to be sure they do: For certainties
Either are past remedies: or, timely knowing,
The remedy then born; discover to me
What both you spur and stop.‡
Had I this cheek

To bathe my lips upon; this hand, whose touch,
Whose every touch, would force the feeler's soul
To the oath of loyalty; this object, which
Takes prisoner the wild motion of mine eye,
Fixing it only here; should I (damn'd then,)
Slaver with lips as common as the stairs,
That mount the Capitol; join gripes with hands
Made hard with hourly falsehood (falsehood, as
With labour;) then lie peeping in an eye,
Base and unlustrous as the smoky light
That's fed with stinking tallow; it were fit,
That all the plagues of hell should at one time
Encounter such revolt.

*Opportunity. † Meet me with reciprocal prayer. What you seem anxious to utter, and yet withhold.


SCENE. A Bedchamber; in one part of it a Trunk.
IMOGEN reading in her Bed; a Lady attending.
Imo. Mine eyes are weak:-

Fold down the leaf where I have left: To bed!
Take not away the taper, leave it burning:
And if thou canst awake by four o' the clock,
I pr'ythee, call me. Sleep hath seiz'd me wholly.
[Exit Lady.
To your protection I commend me, gods!
From fairies, and the tempters of the night,
Guard me, beseech ye!

[Sleeps. Iachimo from the Trunk. Iach. The crickets sing, and man's o'er-labour'd


Repairs itself by rest: Our Tarquin thus

Did softly press the rushes,* ere he waken'd
The chastity he wounded.-Cytherea,

How bravely thou becom'st thy bed! fresh lily!
And whiter than the sheets! That I might touch!
But kiss! one kiss! Rubies unparagon'd,

How dearly they do't.-Tis her breathing that
Perfumes the chamber thus: The flame o' the taper
Bows toward her; and would underpeep her lids,
To see the enclosed lights, now canopied
Under these windows: White and azure, lac'd
With blue of heav'ns own tinct. But my design?
To note the chamber:-I will write all down:
Such, and such pictures;-There the window:-

The adornment of her bed;-The arras,‡ figures,
Why, such, and such:--And the contents of the sto


Ah, but some natural notes about her body,
Above ten thousand meaner moveables
Would testify to enrich mine inventory:
O sleep, thou ape of death, lie dull upon


* It was anciently the custom to strew chambers with rushes.

ti. e. The white skin laced with blue veins. + Tapestry.

And be her sense but as a monument,
Thus in a chapel lying!-Come off, come off-
[Taking off her Bracelet.
As slippery, as the Gordian knot was hard!
'Tis mine; and this will witness outwardly,
As strongly as the conscience does within,
To the madding of her lord. On her left breast
A mole cinque-spotted, like the crimson drops
I' the bottom of a cowslip: Here's a voucher,
Stronger than ever law could make: this secret
Will force him think I have pick'd the lock, and ta'en
The treasure of her honour. No more.-To what

Why should I write this down, that's riveted,
Screw'd to my memory? She hath been reading late
The tale of Tereus; here the leaf's turn'd down,
Where Philomel gave up; I have enough:
To the trunk again, and shut the spring of it,
Swift, swift, you dragons of the night!-that dawning
May bear the raven's eye: I lodge in fear;
Though this a heavenly angel, hell is here.

'Tis gold

[Goes into the Trunk. The Scene closes.


Which buys admittance; oft it doth; yea, and makes Diana's rangers false themselves, yield up

Their deer to the stand of the stealer; and 'tis gold Which makes the true man kill'd, and saves the thief; Nay, sometimes, hangs both thief and true man:


Can it not do, and undo?


Is there no way for men to be, but women Must be half-workers? We are bastards all; And that most venerable man, which I Did call my father, was I know not where When I was stamp'd; some coiner with his tools Made me a counterfeit; Yet my mother seem'd The Dian of that time: so doth my wife The nonpariel of this.-O vengeance, vengeance!

* Modesty.

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Me of my lawful pleasure she restrain'd,
And pray'd me, oft, forbearance: did it with
A pudency so rosy, the sweet view on't

Might well have warm'd old Saturn; that I thought
As chaste as unsun'd snow:

Could I find out

The woman's part in me! For there's no motion
That tends to vice in man, but I affirm

It is the woman's part:, be it lying, note it,

The woman's; flattering, hers; deceiving, hers;
Ambitions, covetings, change of prides, disdain,
Nice longings, slanders, mutability,


All faults that may be nam'd, nay that hell knows,
Why, hers, in part, or all; but, rather, all:
For ev'n to vice

They are not constant, but are changing still
One vice, but of a minute old, for one

Not half so old as that. I'll write against them,
Detest them, curse them:-Yet 'tis greater skill
In a true hate, to pray they have their will:
The very devils cannot plague them better



O, for a horse with wings!-Hear'st thou, Pisanio?
He is at Milford-Haven: Read, and tell me
How far 'tis thither. If one of mean affairs
May plod it in a week, why may not I

Glide thither in a day?-Then, true Pisanio,
(Who long'st like me, to see thy lord: who long'st,-
O, let me bate, but not like me:-yet long'st,—
But in a fainter kind;-O, not like me;

For mine's beyond beyond,) say, and speak thick,t
(Love's counsellor should fill the bores of hearing,
To the smothering of the sense,) how far it is
To this same blessed Milford: And, by the way,
Tell me how Wales was made so happy, as

* Modesty.

+ Crowd one word on another, as fast as possible.

To inherit such a haven: But first of all,

How we may steal from hence; and, for the gap
That we shall make in time, from our hence-going,
And our return, to excuse :-but first, how ge

Why should excuse be born or e'er begot?
We'll talk of that hereafter. Pr'ythee, speak,
How many score of miles may we well ride
"Twixt hour and hour?


One score, 'twixt sun and sun Madam, 's enough for you; and too much too.

Imo. Why, one that rode to his execution, man, Could never go so slow: I have heard of riding


Where horses have been nimbler than the sands
That run i’the clocks behalf:—But this is foolery:
Go, bid my woman feign a sickness; say

She'll home to her father: and provide me, presently
A riding suit; no costlier than would fit
A franklin's* housewife.


Madam, you're best consider. Imo. I see before me, man, nor here, nor here, Nor what ensues; but have a fog in them, That I cannot look through. Away, I pr'ythee; Do as I bid thee: There's no more to say; Accessible is none but Milford way. [Exeu SCENE. Wales. A mountainous Country, with Cave.

Enter BELARIUS, GUIDERIUS, and ARVIRAGUS. Bel. A goodly day not to keep ouse, with such Whose roof's as low as ours! Stoop, boys: This ga Instructs you how to adore the heavens; and bo


To morning's holy office: the gates of monarchs Are arch'd so high, that giants may jet† through And keep their impious turbands on, without Good morrow to the sun,-Hail, thou fair heaven' We house i' the rock, yet use thee not so hardly As prouder livers do.

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