Tis Pity, She’s A Wh*re – Monologue (Annabela)

A monologue from the play by John Ford


PIeasures, farewell, and all ye thriftless minutes
Wherein false joys have spun a weary life.
To these my fortunes now I take my leave.
Thou, precious Time, that swiftly rid’st in post
Over the world, to finish up the race
Of my last fate, here stay thy restless course,
And hear to ages that are yet unborn
A wretched, woeful woman’s tragedy.
My conscience now stands up against my lust
With depositions charactered in guilt,
And tells me I am lost: now I confess
Beauty that clothes the outside of the face
Is cursèd if it be not clothed with grace.
Here like a turtle (mewed up in a cage)
Unmated, I converse with air and walls,
And descant on my vile unhappiness.
O Giovanni, that hast had the spoil
Of thine own virtues and my modest fame,
Would thou hadst been less subject to those stars
That luckless reigned at my nativity:
O would the scourge due to my black offence
Might pass from thee, that I alone might feel
The torment of an uncontrolled flame.
That man, that blessed friar,
Who joined in ceremonial knot my hand
To him whose wife I now am, told me oft
I trod the path to death, and showed me how.
But they who sleep in lethargies of lust
Hug their confusion, making Heaven unjust,
And so did I.
Forgive me, my good genius, and this once
Be helpful to my ends. Let some good man
Pass this way, to whose trust I may commit
This paper double-lined with tears and blood:
Which being granted, here I sadly vow
Repentance, and a leaving of that life
I long have died in.

Read the play here – Student Edition|Regular Edition

Scroll to Top