A monologue from the play by Christopher Marlowe
NOTE: This monologue is reprinted from The Works. Christopher Marlowe. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1910.
She wolf of France, but worse than Wolves of France:
Whose tongue more poison’d than the Adders tooth
How ill beseeming is it in thy sex,
To triumph like an Amazonian trull
Upon his woes, whom Fortune captivates?
But that thy face is visard like, unchanging,
Made impudent by use of evil deeds:
I would assay, proud Queen to make thee blush:
To tell thee of whence thou art, from whom derived,
Twere shame enough to shame thee, wert thou not shameless.
Thy father bears the type of king of Naples,
Of both the Sicily’s and Jerusalem,
Yet not so wealthy as an English Yeoman.
Hath that poor Monarch taught thee to insult?
It needs not, or it boots thee not proud Queen,
Unlesse the Adage must be verified:
That beggars mounted, run their horse to death.
Tis beauty, that oft makes women proud,
But God he wots thy share thereof is small.
Tis Government, that makes them most admired,
The contrary doth make thee wondered at.
Tis virtue that makes them seem devine,
The want thereof makes thee abominable.
Thou art as opposite to every good,
As the Antipodes are untu us,
Or as the south to the Septentrion.
Oh Tiger’s heart wrapped in a woman’s hide?
How couldst thou drain the life blood of the child,
To bid the father wipe his eyes withall,
And yet be seen to bear a woman’s face?
Women are mild, pitiful, and flexible,
Thou indurate, stern, rough, remorseless.
Bids thou me rage? why now thou hast thy will.
Wouldst have me weep? why so thou hast thy wish.
For raging winds blow up a storm of tears,
And when the rage allays the rain begins.
These tears are my sweet Rutland’s obsequies,
And every drop begs vengeance as it falls.