SCENE II. A Street.
Enter LUCIO and two Gentlemen
If the duke with the other dukes come not to
composition with the King of Hungary, why then all
the dukes fall upon the king.
Thou concludest like the sanctimonious pirate, that
went to sea with the Ten Commandments, but scraped
one out of the table.
Why, ’twas a commandment to command the captain and
all the rest from their functions: they put forth
to steal. There’s not a soldier of us all, that, in
the thanksgiving before meat, do relish the petition
well that prays for peace.
Ay, why not? Grace is grace, despite of all
controversy: as, for example, thou thyself art a
wicked villain, despite of all grace.
And thou the velvet: thou art good velvet; thou’rt
a three-piled piece, I warrant thee: I had as lief
be a list of an English kersey as be piled, as thou
art piled, for a French velvet. Do I speak
I think thou dost; and, indeed, with most painful
feeling of thy speech: I will, out of thine own
confession, learn to begin thy health; but, whilst I
live, forget to drink after thee.
Behold, behold. where Madam Mitigation comes! I
have purchased as many diseases under her roof as come to–
Nay, not as one would say, healthy; but so sound as
things that are hollow: thy bones are hollow;
impiety has made a feast of thee.
Enter MISTRESS OVERDONE
Nay, but I know ’tis so: I saw him arrested, saw
him carried away; and, which is more, within these
three days his head to be chopped off.
Believe me, this may be: he promised to meet me two
hours since, and he was ever precise in
Thus, what with the war, what with the sweat, what
with the gallows and what with poverty, I am
Enter POMPEYHow now! what’s the news with you?
Come; fear you not: good counsellors lack no
clients: though you change your place, you need not
change your trade; I’ll be your tapster still.
Courage! there will be pity taken on you: you that
have worn your eyes almost out in the service, you
will be considered.
Here comes Signior Claudio, led by the provost to
prison; and there’s Madam Juliet.
Enter Provost, CLAUDIO, JULIET, and Officers
Thus can the demigod Authority
Make us pay down for our offence by weight
The words of heaven; on whom it will, it will;
On whom it will not, so; yet still ’tis just.
Re-enter LUCIO and two Gentlemen
From too much liberty, my Lucio, liberty:
As surfeit is the father of much fast,
So every scope by the immoderate use
Turns to restraint. Our natures do pursue,
Like rats that ravin down their proper bane,
A thirsty evil; and when we drink we die.
If could speak so wisely under an arrest, I would
send for certain of my creditors: and yet, to say
the truth, I had as lief have the foppery of freedom
as the morality of imprisonment. What’s thy
Thus stands it with me: upon a true contract
I got possession of Julietta’s bed:
You know the lady; she is fast my wife,
Save that we do the denunciation lack
Of outward order: this we came not to,
Only for propagation of a dower
Remaining in the coffer of her friends,
From whom we thought it meet to hide our love
Till time had made them for us. But it chances
The stealth of our most mutual entertainment
With character too gross is writ on Juliet.
Unhappily, even so.
And the new deputy now for the duke–
Whether it be the fault and glimpse of newness,
Or whether that the body public be
A horse whereon the governor doth ride,
Who, newly in the seat, that it may know
He can command, lets it straight feel the spur;
Whether the tyranny be in his place,
Or in his emmence that fills it up,
I stagger in:–but this new governor
Awakes me all the enrolled penalties
Which have, like unscour’d armour, hung by the wall
So long that nineteen zodiacs have gone round
And none of them been worn; and, for a name,
Now puts the drowsy and neglected act
Freshly on me: ’tis surely for a name.
I warrant it is: and thy head stands so tickle on
thy shoulders that a milkmaid, if she be in love,
may sigh it off. Send after the duke and appeal to
I have done so, but he’s not to be found.
I prithee, Lucio, do me this kind service:
This day my sister should the cloister enter
And there receive her approbation:
Acquaint her with the danger of my state:
Implore her, in my voice, that she make friends
To the strict deputy; bid herself assay him:
I have great hope in that; for in her youth
There is a prone and speechless dialect,
Such as move men; beside, she hath prosperous art
When she will play with reason and discourse,
And well she can persuade.
I pray she may; as well for the encouragement of the
like, which else would stand under grievous
imposition, as for the enjoying of thy life, who I
would be sorry should be thus foolishly lost at a
game of tick-tack. I’ll to her.