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Measure for Measure

ACT I

SCENE I. An apartment in the DUKE'S palace.

DUKE VINCENTIOEscalus.
ESCALUSMy lord.
DUKE VINCENTIOOf government the properties to unfold,
Would seem in me to affect speech and discourse;
Act 1 Sc 1 Ln 5Since I am put to know that your own science
Exceeds, in that, the lists of all advice
My strength can give you: then no more remains,
But that to your sufficiency, as your Worth is able,
And let them work. The nature of our people,
Act 1 Sc 1 Ln 10Our city's institutions, and the terms
For common justice, you're as pregnant in
As art and practise hath enriched any
That we remember. There is our commission,
From which we would not have you warp. Call hither,
Act 1 Sc 1 Ln 15I say, bid come before us Angelo.
What figure of us think you he will bear?
For you must know, we have with special soul
Elected him our absence to supply,
Lent him our terror, dress'd him with our love,
Act 1 Sc 1 Ln 20And given his deputation all the organs
Of our own power: what think you of it?
ESCALUSIf any in Vienna be of worth
To undergo such ample grace and honour,
It is Lord Angelo.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 1 Sc 1 Ln 25Look where he comes.
ANGELOAlways obedient to your grace's will,
I come to know your pleasure.
DUKE VINCENTIOAngelo,
There is a kind of character in thy life,
Act 1 Sc 1 Ln 30That to the observer doth thy history
Fully unfold. Thyself and thy belongings
Are not thine own so proper as to waste
Thyself upon thy virtues, they on thee.
Heaven doth with us as we with torches do,
Act 1 Sc 1 Ln 35Not light them for themselves; for if our virtues
Did not go forth of us, 'twere all alike
As if we had them not. Spirits are not finely touch'd
But to fine issues, nor Nature never lends
The smallest scruple of her excellence
Act 1 Sc 1 Ln 40But, like a thrifty goddess, she determines
Herself the glory of a creditor,
Both thanks and use. But I do bend my speech
To one that can my part in him advertise;
Hold therefore, Angelo: —
Act 1 Sc 1 Ln 45In our remove be thou at full ourself;
Mortality and mercy in Vienna
Live in thy tongue and heart: old Escalus,
Though first in question, is thy secondary.
Take thy commission.
ANGELOAct 1 Sc 1 Ln 50Now, good my lord,
Let there be some more test made of my metal,
Before so noble and so great a figure
Be stamp'd upon it.
DUKE VINCENTIONo more evasion:
Act 1 Sc 1 Ln 55We have with a leaven'd and prepared choice
Proceeded to you; therefore take your honours.
Our haste from hence is of so quick condition
That it prefers itself and leaves unquestion'd
Matters of needful value. We shall write to you,
Act 1 Sc 1 Ln 60As time and our concernings shall importune,
How it goes with us, and do look to know
What doth befall you here. So, fare you well;
To the hopeful execution do I leave you
Of your commissions.
ANGELOAct 1 Sc 1 Ln 65Yet give leave, my lord,
That we may bring you something on the way.
DUKE VINCENTIOMy haste may not admit it;
Nor need you, on mine honour, have to do
With any scruple; your scope is as mine own
Act 1 Sc 1 Ln 70So to enforce or qualify the laws
As to your soul seems good. Give me your hand:
I'll privily away. I love the people,
But do not like to stage me to their eyes:
Through it do well, I do not relish well
Act 1 Sc 1 Ln 75Their loud applause and Aves vehement;
Nor do I think the man of safe discretion
That does affect it. Once more, fare you well.
ANGELOThe heavens give safety to your purposes!
ESCALUSLead forth and bring you back in happiness!
DUKEAct 1 Sc 1 Ln 80I thank you. Fare you well.
ESCALUSI shall desire you, sir, to give me leave
To have free speech with you; and it concerns me
To look into the bottom of my place:
A power I have, but of what strength and nature
Act 1 Sc 1 Ln 85I am not yet instructed.
ANGELO'Tis so with me. Let us withdraw together,
And we may soon our satisfaction have
Touching that point.
ESCALUSI'll wait upon your honour.

ACT I

SCENE II. A Street.

LUCIOIf the duke with the other dukes come not to
composition with the King of Hungary, why then all
the dukes fall upon the king.
First GentlemanHeaven grant us its peace, but not the King of
Act 1 Sc 2 Ln 5Hungary's!
Second GentlemanAmen.
LUCIOThou concludest like the sanctimonious pirate, that
went to sea with the Ten Commandments, but scraped
one out of the table.
Second GentlemanAct 1 Sc 2 Ln 10'Thou shalt not steal'?
LUCIOAy, that he razed.
First GentlemanWhy, '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
Act 1 Sc 2 Ln 15the thanksgiving before meat, do relish the petition
well that prays for peace.
Second GentlemanI never heard any soldier dislike it.
LUCIOI believe thee; for I think thou never wast where
grace was said.
Second GentlemanAct 1 Sc 2 Ln 20No? a dozen times at least.
First GentlemanWhat, in metre?
LUCIOIn any proportion or in any language.
First GentlemanI think, or in any religion.
LUCIOAy, why not? Grace is grace, despite of all
Act 1 Sc 2 Ln 25controversy: as, for example, thou thyself art a
wicked villain, despite of all grace.
First GentlemanWell, there went but a pair of shears between us.
LUCIOI grant; as there may between the lists and the
velvet. Thou art the list.
First GentlemanAct 1 Sc 2 Ln 30And 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
feelingly now?
LUCIOAct 1 Sc 2 Ln 35I 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.
First GentlemanI think I have done myself wrong, have I not?
Second GentlemanAct 1 Sc 2 Ln 40Yes, that thou hast, whether thou art tainted or free.
LUCIOBehold, behold. where Madam Mitigation comes! I
have purchased as many diseases under her roof as come to —
Second GentlemanTo what, I pray?
LUCIOJudge.
Second GentlemanAct 1 Sc 2 Ln 45To three thousand dolours a year.
First GentlemanAy, and more.
LUCIOA French crown more.
First GentlemanThou art always figuring diseases in me; but thou
art full of error; I am sound.
LUCIOAct 1 Sc 2 Ln 50Nay, 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.
First GentlemanHow now! which of your hips has the most profound sciatica?
MISTRESS OVERDONEWell, well; there's one yonder arrested and carried
Act 1 Sc 2 Ln 55to prison was worth five thousand of you all.
Second GentlemanWho's that, I pray thee?
MISTRESS OVERDONEMarry, sir, that's Claudio, Signior Claudio.
First GentlemanClaudio to prison? 'tis not so.
MISTRESS OVERDONENay, but I know 'tis so: I saw him arrested, saw
Act 1 Sc 2 Ln 60him carried away; and, which is more, within these
three days his head to be chopped off.
LUCIOBut, after all this fooling, I would not have it so.
Art thou sure of this?
MISTRESS OVERDONEI am too sure of it: and it is for getting Madam
Act 1 Sc 2 Ln 65Julietta with child.
LUCIOBelieve me, this may be: he promised to meet me two
hours since, and he was ever precise in
promise-keeping.
Second GentlemanBesides, you know, it draws something near to the
Act 1 Sc 2 Ln 70speech we had to such a purpose.
First GentlemanBut, most of all, agreeing with the proclamation.
LUCIOAway! let's go learn the truth of it.
MISTRESS OVERDONEThus, what with the war, what with the sweat, what
with the gallows and what with poverty, I am
Act 1 Sc 2 Ln 75custom-shrunk.
How now! what's the news with you?
POMPEYYonder man is carried to prison.
MISTRESS OVERDONEWell; what has he done?
POMPEYA woman.
MISTRESS OVERDONEAct 1 Sc 2 Ln 80But what's his offence?
POMPEYGroping for trouts in a peculiar river.
MISTRESS OVERDONEWhat, is there a maid with child by him?
POMPEYNo, but there's a woman with maid by him. You have
not heard of the proclamation, have you?
MISTRESS OVERDONEAct 1 Sc 2 Ln 85What proclamation, man?
POMPEYAll houses in the suburbs of Vienna must be plucked down.
MISTRESS OVERDONEAnd what shall become of those in the city?
POMPEYThey shall stand for seed: they had gone down too,
but that a wise burgher put in for them.
MISTRESS OVERDONEAct 1 Sc 2 Ln 90But shall all our houses of resort in the suburbs be
pulled down?
POMPEYTo the ground, mistress.
MISTRESS OVERDONEWhy, here's a change indeed in the commonwealth!
What shall become of me?
POMPEYAct 1 Sc 2 Ln 95Come; 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
Act 1 Sc 2 Ln 100will be considered.
MISTRESS OVERDONEWhat's to do here, Thomas tapster? let's withdraw.
POMPEYHere comes Signior Claudio, led by the provost to
prison; and there's Madam Juliet.
CLAUDIOFellow, why dost thou show me thus to the world?
Act 1 Sc 2 Ln 105Bear me to prison, where I am committed.
ProvostI do it not in evil disposition,
But from Lord Angelo by special charge.
CLAUDIOThus can the demigod Authority
Make us pay down for our offence by weight
Act 1 Sc 2 Ln 110The words of heaven; on whom it will, it will;
On whom it will not, so; yet still 'tis just.
LUCIOWhy, how now, Claudio! whence comes this restraint?
CLAUDIOFrom too much liberty, my Lucio, liberty:
As surfeit is the father of much fast,
Act 1 Sc 2 Ln 115So 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.
LUCIOIf could speak so wisely under an arrest, I would
Act 1 Sc 2 Ln 120send 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
offence, Claudio?
CLAUDIOWhat but to speak of would offend again.
LUCIOAct 1 Sc 2 Ln 125What, is't murder?
CLAUDIONo.
LUCIOLechery?
CLAUDIOCall it so.
ProvostAway, sir! you must go.
CLAUDIOAct 1 Sc 2 Ln 130One word, good friend. Lucio, a word with you.
LUCIOA hundred, if they'll do you any good.
Is lechery so look'd after?
CLAUDIOThus stands it with me: upon a true contract
I got possession of Julietta's bed:
Act 1 Sc 2 Ln 135You 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,
Act 1 Sc 2 Ln 140From 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.
LUCIOWith child, perhaps?
CLAUDIOAct 1 Sc 2 Ln 145Unhappily, 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,
Act 1 Sc 2 Ln 150Who, 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
Act 1 Sc 2 Ln 155Awakes 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
Act 1 Sc 2 Ln 160Freshly on me: 'tis surely for a name.
LUCIOI 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
him.
CLAUDIOAct 1 Sc 2 Ln 165I 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:
Act 1 Sc 2 Ln 170Implore 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
Act 1 Sc 2 Ln 175When she will play with reason and discourse,
And well she can persuade.
LUCIOI 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
Act 1 Sc 2 Ln 180would be sorry should be thus foolishly lost at a
game of tick-tack. I'll to her.
CLAUDIOI thank you, good friend Lucio.
LUCIOWithin two hours.
CLAUDIOCome, officer, away!

ACT I

SCENE III. A monastery.

DUKE VINCENTIONo, holy father; throw away that thought;
Believe not that the dribbling dart of love
Can pierce a complete bosom. Why I desire thee
To give me secret harbour, hath a purpose
Act 1 Sc 3 Ln 5More grave and wrinkled than the aims and ends
Of burning youth.
FRIAR THOMASMay your grace speak of it?
DUKE VINCENTIOMy holy sir, none better knows than you
How I have ever loved the life removed
Act 1 Sc 3 Ln 10And held in idle price to haunt assemblies
Where youth, and cost, and witless bravery keeps.
I have deliver'd to Lord Angelo,
A man of stricture and firm abstinence,
My absolute power and place here in Vienna,
Act 1 Sc 3 Ln 15And he supposes me travell'd to Poland;
For so I have strew'd it in the common ear,
And so it is received. Now, pious sir,
You will demand of me why I do this?
FRIAR THOMASGladly, my lord.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 1 Sc 3 Ln 20We have strict statutes and most biting laws.
The needful bits and curbs to headstrong weeds,
Which for this nineteen years we have let slip;
Even like an o'ergrown lion in a cave,
That goes not out to prey. Now, as fond fathers,
Act 1 Sc 3 Ln 25Having bound up the threatening twigs of birch,
Only to stick it in their children's sight
For terror, not to use, in time the rod
Becomes more mock'd than fear'd; so our decrees,
Dead to infliction, to themselves are dead;
Act 1 Sc 3 Ln 30And liberty plucks justice by the nose;
The baby beats the nurse, and quite athwart
Goes all decorum.
FRIAR THOMASIt rested in your grace
To unloose this tied-up justice when you pleased:
Act 1 Sc 3 Ln 35And it in you more dreadful would have seem'd
Than in Lord Angelo.
DUKE VINCENTIOI do fear, too dreadful:
Sith 'twas my fault to give the people scope,
'Twould be my tyranny to strike and gall them
Act 1 Sc 3 Ln 40For what I bid them do: for we bid this be done,
When evil deeds have their permissive pass
And not the punishment. Therefore indeed, my father,
I have on Angelo imposed the office;
Who may, in the ambush of my name, strike home,
Act 1 Sc 3 Ln 45And yet my nature never in the fight
To do in slander. And to behold his sway,
I will, as 'twere a brother of your order,
Visit both prince and people: therefore, I prithee,
Supply me with the habit and instruct me
Act 1 Sc 3 Ln 50How I may formally in person bear me
Like a true friar. More reasons for this action
At our more leisure shall I render you;
Only, this one: Lord Angelo is precise;
Stands at a guard with envy; scarce confesses
Act 1 Sc 3 Ln 55That his blood flows, or that his appetite
Is more to bread than stone: hence shall we see,
If power change purpose, what our seemers be.

ACT I

SCENE IV. A nunnery.

ISABELLAAnd have you nuns no farther privileges?
FRANCISCAAre not these large enough?
ISABELLAYes, truly; I speak not as desiring more;
But rather wishing a more strict restraint
Act 1 Sc 4 Ln 5Upon the sisterhood, the votarists of Saint Clare.
LUCIO Ho! Peace be in this place!
ISABELLAWho's that which calls?
FRANCISCAIt is a man's voice. Gentle Isabella,
Turn you the key, and know his business of him;
Act 1 Sc 4 Ln 10You may, I may not; you are yet unsworn.
When you have vow'd, you must not speak with men
But in the presence of the prioress:
Then, if you speak, you must not show your face,
Or, if you show your face, you must not speak.
Act 1 Sc 4 Ln 15He calls again; I pray you, answer him.
ISABELLAPeace and prosperity! Who is't that calls
LUCIOHail, virgin, if you be, as those cheek-roses
Proclaim you are no less! Can you so stead me
As bring me to the sight of Isabella,
Act 1 Sc 4 Ln 20A novice of this place and the fair sister
To her unhappy brother Claudio?
ISABELLAWhy 'her unhappy brother'? let me ask,
The rather for I now must make you know
I am that Isabella and his sister.
LUCIOAct 1 Sc 4 Ln 25Gentle and fair, your brother kindly greets you:
Not to be weary with you, he's in prison.
ISABELLAWoe me! for what?
LUCIOFor that which, if myself might be his judge,
He should receive his punishment in thanks:
Act 1 Sc 4 Ln 30He hath got his friend with child.
ISABELLASir, make me not your story.
LUCIOIt is true.
I would not — though 'tis my familiar sin
With maids to seem the lapwing and to jest,
Act 1 Sc 4 Ln 35Tongue far from heart — play with all virgins so:
I hold you as a thing ensky'd and sainted.
By your renouncement an immortal spirit,
And to be talk'd with in sincerity,
As with a saint.
ISABELLAAct 1 Sc 4 Ln 40You do blaspheme the good in mocking me.
LUCIODo not believe it. Fewness and truth, 'tis thus:
Your brother and his lover have embraced:
As those that feed grow full, as blossoming time
That from the seedness the bare fallow brings
Act 1 Sc 4 Ln 45To teeming foison, even so her plenteous womb
Expresseth his full tilth and husbandry.
ISABELLASome one with child by him? My cousin Juliet?
LUCIOIs she your cousin?
ISABELLAAdoptedly; as school-maids change their names
Act 1 Sc 4 Ln 50By vain though apt affection.
LUCIOShe it is.
ISABELLAO, let him marry her.
LUCIOThis is the point.
The duke is very strangely gone from hence;
Act 1 Sc 4 Ln 55Bore many gentlemen, myself being one,
In hand and hope of action: but we do learn
By those that know the very nerves of state,
His givings-out were of an infinite distance
From his true-meant design. Upon his place,
Act 1 Sc 4 Ln 60And with full line of his authority,
Governs Lord Angelo; a man whose blood
Is very snow-broth; one who never feels
The wanton stings and motions of the sense,
But doth rebate and blunt his natural edge
Act 1 Sc 4 Ln 65With profits of the mind, study and fast.
He — to give fear to use and liberty,
Which have for long run by the hideous law,
As mice by lions — hath pick'd out an act,
Under whose heavy sense your brother's life
Act 1 Sc 4 Ln 70Falls into forfeit: he arrests him on it;
And follows close the rigour of the statute,
To make him an example. All hope is gone,
Unless you have the grace by your fair prayer
To soften Angelo: and that's my pith of business
Act 1 Sc 4 Ln 75'Twixt you and your poor brother.
ISABELLADoth he so seek his life?
LUCIOHas censured him
Already; and, as I hear, the provost hath
A warrant for his execution.
ISABELLAAct 1 Sc 4 Ln 80Alas! what poor ability's in me
To do him good?
LUCIOAssay the power you have.
ISABELLAMy power? Alas, I doubt —
LUCIOOur doubts are traitors
Act 1 Sc 4 Ln 85And make us lose the good we oft might win
By fearing to attempt. Go to Lord Angelo,
And let him learn to know, when maidens sue,
Men give like gods; but when they weep and kneel,
All their petitions are as freely theirs
Act 1 Sc 4 Ln 90As they themselves would owe them.
ISABELLAI'll see what I can do.
LUCIOBut speedily.
ISABELLAI will about it straight;
No longer staying but to give the mother
Act 1 Sc 4 Ln 95Notice of my affair. I humbly thank you:
Commend me to my brother: soon at night
I'll send him certain word of my success.
LUCIOI take my leave of you.
ISABELLAGood sir, adieu.

ACT II

SCENE I. A hall In ANGELO's house.

ANGELOWe must not make a scarecrow of the law,
Setting it up to fear the birds of prey,
And let it keep one shape, till custom make it
Their perch and not their terror.
ESCALUSAct 2 Sc 1 Ln 5Ay, but yet
Let us be keen, and rather cut a little,
Than fall, and bruise to death. Alas, this gentleman
Whom I would save, had a most noble father!
Let but your honour know,
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 10Whom I believe to be most strait in virtue,
That, in the working of your own affections,
Had time cohered with place or place with wishing,
Or that the resolute acting of your blood
Could have attain'd the effect of your own purpose,
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 15Whether you had not sometime in your life
Err'd in this point which now you censure him,
And pull'd the law upon you.
ANGELO'Tis one thing to be tempted, Escalus,
Another thing to fall. I not deny,
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 20The jury, passing on the prisoner's life,
May in the sworn twelve have a thief or two
Guiltier than him they try. What's open made to justice,
That justice seizes: what know the laws
That thieves do pass on thieves? 'Tis very pregnant,
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 25The jewel that we find, we stoop and take't
Because we see it; but what we do not see
We tread upon, and never think of it.
You may not so extenuate his offence
For I have had such faults; but rather tell me,
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 30When I, that censure him, do so offend,
Let mine own judgment pattern out my death,
And nothing come in partial. Sir, he must die.
ESCALUSBe it as your wisdom will.
ANGELOWhere is the provost?
ProvostAct 2 Sc 1 Ln 35Here, if it like your honour.
ANGELOSee that Claudio
Be executed by nine to-morrow morning:
Bring him his confessor, let him be prepared;
For that's the utmost of his pilgrimage.
ESCALUSAct 2 Sc 1 Ln 40 Well, heaven forgive him! and forgive us all!
Some rise by sin, and some by virtue fall:
Some run from brakes of ice, and answer none:
And some condemned for a fault alone.
ELBOWCome, bring them away: if these be good people in
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 45a commonweal that do nothing but use their abuses in
common houses, I know no law: bring them away.
ANGELOHow now, sir! What's your name? and what's the matter?
ELBOWIf it Please your honour, I am the poor duke's
constable, and my name is Elbow: I do lean upon
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 50justice, sir, and do bring in here before your good
honour two notorious benefactors.
ANGELOBenefactors? Well; what benefactors are they? are
they not malefactors?
ELBOWIf it? please your honour, I know not well what they
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 55are: but precise villains they are, that I am sure
of; and void of all profanation in the world that
good Christians ought to have.
ESCALUSThis comes off well; here's a wise officer.
ANGELOGo to: what quality are they of? Elbow is your
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 60name? why dost thou not speak, Elbow?
POMPEYHe cannot, sir; he's out at elbow.
ANGELOWhat are you, sir?
ELBOWHe, sir! a tapster, sir; parcel-bawd; one that
serves a bad woman; whose house, sir, was, as they
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 65say, plucked down in the suburbs; and now she
professes a hot-house, which, I think, is a very ill house too.
ESCALUSHow know you that?
ELBOWMy wife, sir, whom I detest before heaven and your honour, —
ESCALUSHow? thy wife?
ELBOWAct 2 Sc 1 Ln 70Ay, sir; whom, I thank heaven, is an honest woman, —
ESCALUSDost thou detest her therefore?
ELBOWI say, sir, I will detest myself also, as well as
she, that this house, if it be not a bawd's house,
it is pity of her life, for it is a naughty house.
ESCALUSAct 2 Sc 1 Ln 75How dost thou know that, constable?
ELBOWMarry, sir, by my wife; who, if she had been a woman
cardinally given, might have been accused in
fornication, adultery, and all uncleanliness there.
ESCALUSBy the woman's means?
ELBOWAct 2 Sc 1 Ln 80Ay, sir, by Mistress Overdone's means: but as she
spit in his face, so she defied him.
POMPEYSir, if it please your honour, this is not so.
ELBOWProve it before these varlets here, thou honourable
man; prove it.
ESCALUSAct 2 Sc 1 Ln 85Do you hear how he misplaces?
POMPEYSir, she came in great with child; and longing,
saving your honour's reverence, for stewed prunes;
sir, we had but two in the house, which at that very
distant time stood, as it were, in a fruit-dish, a
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 90dish of some three-pence; your honours have seen
such dishes; they are not China dishes, but very
good dishes, —
ESCALUSGo to, go to: no matter for the dish, sir.
POMPEYNo, indeed, sir, not of a pin; you are therein in
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 95the right: but to the point. As I say, this
Mistress Elbow, being, as I say, with child, and
being great-bellied, and longing, as I said, for
prunes; and having but two in the dish, as I said,
Master Froth here, this very man, having eaten the
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 100rest, as I said, and, as I say, paying for them very
honestly; for, as you know, Master Froth, I could
not give you three-pence again.
FROTHNo, indeed.
POMPEYVery well: you being then, if you be remembered,
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 105cracking the stones of the foresaid prunes, —
FROTHAy, so I did indeed.
POMPEYWhy, very well; I telling you then, if you be
remembered, that such a one and such a one were past
cure of the thing you wot of, unless they kept very
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 110good diet, as I told you, —
FROTHAll this is true.
POMPEYWhy, very well, then, —
ESCALUSCome, you are a tedious fool: to the purpose. What
was done to Elbow's wife, that he hath cause to
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 115complain of? Come me to what was done to her.
POMPEYSir, your honour cannot come to that yet.
ESCALUSNo, sir, nor I mean it not.
POMPEYSir, but you shall come to it, by your honour's
leave. And, I beseech you, look into Master Froth
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 120here, sir; a man of four-score pound a year; whose
father died at Hallowmas: was't not at Hallowmas,
Master Froth?
FROTHAll-hallond eve.
POMPEYWhy, very well; I hope here be truths. He, sir,
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 125sitting, as I say, in a lower chair, sir; 'twas in
the Bunch of Grapes, where indeed you have a delight
to sit, have you not?
FROTHI have so; because it is an open room and good for winter.
POMPEYWhy, very well, then; I hope here be truths.
ANGELOAct 2 Sc 1 Ln 130This will last out a night in Russia,
When nights are longest there: I'll take my leave.
And leave you to the hearing of the cause;
Hoping you'll find good cause to whip them all.
ESCALUSI think no less. Good morrow to your lordship.
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 135Now, sir, come on: what was done to Elbow's wife, once more?
POMPEYOnce, sir? there was nothing done to her once.
ELBOWI beseech you, sir, ask him what this man did to my wife.
POMPEYI beseech your honour, ask me.
ESCALUSWell, sir; what did this gentleman to her?
POMPEYAct 2 Sc 1 Ln 140I beseech you, sir, look in this gentleman's face.
Good Master Froth, look upon his honour; 'tis for a
good purpose. Doth your honour mark his face?
ESCALUSAy, sir, very well.
POMPEYNay; I beseech you, mark it well.
ESCALUSAct 2 Sc 1 Ln 145Well, I do so.
POMPEYDoth your honour see any harm in his face?
ESCALUSWhy, no.
POMPEYI'll be supposed upon a book, his face is the worst
thing about him. Good, then; if his face be the
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 150worst thing about him, how could Master Froth do the
constable's wife any harm? I would know that of
your honour.
ESCALUSHe's in the right. Constable, what say you to it?
ELBOWFirst, an it like you, the house is a respected
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 155house; next, this is a respected fellow; and his
mistress is a respected woman.
POMPEYBy this hand, sir, his wife is a more respected
person than any of us all.
ELBOWVarlet, thou liest; thou liest, wicked varlet! the
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 160time has yet to come that she was ever respected
with man, woman, or child.
POMPEYSir, she was respected with him before he married with her.
ESCALUSWhich is the wiser here? Justice or Iniquity? Is
this true?
ELBOWAct 2 Sc 1 Ln 165O thou caitiff! O thou varlet! O thou wicked
Hannibal! I respected with her before I was married
to her! If ever I was respected with her, or she
with me, let not your worship think me the poor
duke's officer. Prove this, thou wicked Hannibal, or
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 170I'll have mine action of battery on thee.
ESCALUSIf he took you a box o' the ear, you might have your
action of slander too.
ELBOWMarry, I thank your good worship for it. What is't
your worship's pleasure I shall do with this wicked caitiff?
ESCALUSAct 2 Sc 1 Ln 175Truly, officer, because he hath some offences in him
that thou wouldst discover if thou couldst, let him
continue in his courses till thou knowest what they
are.
ELBOWMarry, I thank your worship for it. Thou seest, thou
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 180wicked varlet, now, what's come upon thee: thou art
to continue now, thou varlet; thou art to continue.
ESCALUSWhere were you born, friend?
FROTHHere in Vienna, sir.
ESCALUSAre you of fourscore pounds a year?
FROTHAct 2 Sc 1 Ln 185Yes, an't please you, sir.
ESCALUSSo. What trade are you of, sir?
POMPHEYTapster; a poor widow's tapster.
ESCALUSYour mistress' name?
POMPHEYMistress Overdone.
ESCALUSAct 2 Sc 1 Ln 190Hath she had any more than one husband?
POMPEYNine, sir; Overdone by the last.
ESCALUSNine! Come hither to me, Master Froth. Master
Froth, I would not have you acquainted with
tapsters: they will draw you, Master Froth, and you
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 195will hang them. Get you gone, and let me hear no
more of you.
FROTHI thank your worship. For mine own part, I never
come into any room in a tap-house, but I am drawn
in.
ESCALUSAct 2 Sc 1 Ln 200Well, no more of it, Master Froth: farewell.
Come you hither to me, Master tapster. What's your
name, Master tapster?
POMPEYPompey.
ESCALUSWhat else?
POMPEYAct 2 Sc 1 Ln 205Bum, sir.
ESCALUSTroth, and your bum is the greatest thing about you;
so that in the beastliest sense you are Pompey the
Great. Pompey, you are partly a bawd, Pompey,
howsoever you colour it in being a tapster, are you
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 210not? come, tell me true: it shall be the better for you.
POMPEYTruly, sir, I am a poor fellow that would live.
ESCALUSHow would you live, Pompey? by being a bawd? What
do you think of the trade, Pompey? is it a lawful trade?
POMPEYIf the law would allow it, sir.
ESCALUSAct 2 Sc 1 Ln 215But the law will not allow it, Pompey; nor it shall
not be allowed in Vienna.
POMPEYDoes your worship mean to geld and splay all the
youth of the city?
ESCALUSNo, Pompey.
POMPEYAct 2 Sc 1 Ln 220Truly, sir, in my poor opinion, they will to't then.
If your worship will take order for the drabs and
the knaves, you need not to fear the bawds.
ESCALUSThere are pretty orders beginning, I can tell you:
it is but heading and hanging.
POMPEYAct 2 Sc 1 Ln 225If you head and hang all that offend that way but
for ten year together, you'll be glad to give out a
commission for more heads: if this law hold in
Vienna ten year, I'll rent the fairest house in it
after three-pence a bay: if you live to see this
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 230come to pass, say Pompey told you so.
ESCALUSThank you, good Pompey; and, in requital of your
prophecy, hark you: I advise you, let me not find
you before me again upon any complaint whatsoever;
no, not for dwelling where you do: if I do, Pompey,
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 235I shall beat you to your tent, and prove a shrewd
Caesar to you; in plain dealing, Pompey, I shall
have you whipt: so, for this time, Pompey, fare you well.
POMPEYI thank your worship for your good counsel:
but I shall follow it as the flesh and fortune shall
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 240better determine.
Whip me? No, no; let carman whip his jade:
The valiant heart is not whipt out of his trade.
ESCALUSCome hither to me, Master Elbow; come hither, Master
constable. How long have you been in this place of constable?
ELBOWAct 2 Sc 1 Ln 245Seven year and a half, sir.
ESCALUSI thought, by your readiness in the office, you had
continued in it some time. You say, seven years together?
ELBOWAnd a half, sir.
ESCALUSAlas, it hath been great pains to you. They do you
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 250wrong to put you so oft upon 't: are there not men
in your ward sufficient to serve it?
ELBOWFaith, sir, few of any wit in such matters: as they
are chosen, they are glad to choose me for them; I
do it for some piece of money, and go through with
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 255all.
ESCALUSLook you bring me in the names of some six or seven,
the most sufficient of your parish.
ELBOWTo your worship's house, sir?
ESCALUSTo my house. Fare you well.
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 260What's o'clock, think you?
JusticeEleven, sir.
ESCALUSI pray you home to dinner with me.
JusticeI humbly thank you.
ESCALUSIt grieves me for the death of Claudio;
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 265But there's no remedy.
JusticeLord Angelo is severe.
ESCALUSIt is but needful:
Mercy is not itself, that oft looks so;
Pardon is still the nurse of second woe:
Act 2 Sc 1 Ln 270But yet, — poor Claudio! There is no remedy.
Come, sir.

ACT II

SCENE II. Another room in the same.

ServantHe's hearing of a cause; he will come straight
I'll tell him of you.
ProvostPray you, do.
I'll know
Act 2 Sc 2 Ln 5His pleasure; may be he will relent. Alas,
He hath but as offended in a dream!
All sects, all ages smack of this vice; and he
To die for't!
ANGELONow, what's the matter. Provost?
ProvostAct 2 Sc 2 Ln 10Is it your will Claudio shall die tomorrow?
ANGELODid not I tell thee yea? hadst thou not order?
Why dost thou ask again?
ProvostLest I might be too rash:
Under your good correction, I have seen,
Act 2 Sc 2 Ln 15When, after execution, judgment hath
Repented o'er his doom.
ANGELOGo to; let that be mine:
Do you your office, or give up your place,
And you shall well be spared.
ProvostAct 2 Sc 2 Ln 20I crave your honour's pardon.
What shall be done, sir, with the groaning Juliet?
She's very near her hour.
ANGELODispose of her
To some more fitter place, and that with speed.
ServantAct 2 Sc 2 Ln 25Here is the sister of the man condemn'd
Desires access to you.
ANGELOHath he a sister?
ProvostAy, my good lord; a very virtuous maid,
And to be shortly of a sisterhood,
Act 2 Sc 2 Ln 30If not already.
ANGELOWell, let her be admitted.
See you the fornicatress be removed:
Let have needful, but not lavish, means;
There shall be order for't.
ProvostAct 2 Sc 2 Ln 35God save your honour!
ANGELOStay a little while.
You're welcome: what's your will?
ISABELLAI am a woeful suitor to your honour,
Please but your honour hear me.
ANGELOAct 2 Sc 2 Ln 40Well; what's your suit?
ISABELLAThere is a vice that most I do abhor,
And most desire should meet the blow of justice;
For which I would not plead, but that I must;
For which I must not plead, but that I am
Act 2 Sc 2 Ln 45At war 'twixt will and will not.
ANGELOWell; the matter?
ISABELLAI have a brother is condemn'd to die:
I do beseech you, let it be his fault,
And not my brother.
ProvostAct 2 Sc 2 Ln 50 Heaven give thee moving graces!
ANGELOCondemn the fault and not the actor of it?
Why, every fault's condemn'd ere it be done:
Mine were the very cipher of a function,
To fine the faults whose fine stands in record,
Act 2 Sc 2 Ln 55And let go by the actor.
ISABELLAO just but severe law!
I had a brother, then. Heaven keep your honour!
LUCIO Give't not o'er so: to him
again, entreat him;
Act 2 Sc 2 Ln 60Kneel down before him, hang upon his gown:
You are too cold; if you should need a pin,
You could not with more tame a tongue desire it:
To him, I say!
ISABELLAMust he needs die?
ANGELOAct 2 Sc 2 Ln 65Maiden, no remedy.
ISABELLAYes; I do think that you might pardon him,
And neither heaven nor man grieve at the mercy.
ANGELOI will not do't.
ISABELLABut can you, if you would?
ANGELOAct 2 Sc 2 Ln 70Look, what I will not, that I cannot do.
ISABELLABut might you do't, and do the world no wrong,
If so your heart were touch'd with that remorse
As mine is to him?
ANGELOHe's sentenced; 'tis too late.
LUCIOAct 2 Sc 2 Ln 75 You are too cold.
ISABELLAToo late? why, no; I, that do speak a word.
May call it back again. Well, believe this,
No ceremony that to great ones 'longs,
Not the king's crown, nor the deputed sword,
Act 2 Sc 2 Ln 80The marshal's truncheon, nor the judge's robe,
Become them with one half so good a grace
As mercy does.
If he had been as you and you as he,
You would have slipt like him; but he, like you,
Act 2 Sc 2 Ln 85Would not have been so stern.
ANGELOPray you, be gone.
ISABELLAI would to heaven I had your potency,
And you were Isabel! should it then be thus?
No; I would tell what 'twere to be a judge,
Act 2 Sc 2 Ln 90And what a prisoner.
LUCIO(STAGEDIR "Aside to ISABELLA")
Ay, touch him; there's the vein.
ANGELOYour brother is a forfeit of the law,
And you but waste your words.
ISABELLAAct 2 Sc 2 Ln 95Alas, alas!
Why, all the souls that were were forfeit once;
And He that might the vantage best have took
Found out the remedy. How would you be,
If He, which is the top of judgment, should
Act 2 Sc 2 Ln 100But judge you as you are? O, think on that;
And mercy then will breathe within your lips,
Like man new made.
ANGELOBe you content, fair maid;
It is the law, not I condemn your brother:
Act 2 Sc 2 Ln 105Were he my kinsman, brother, or my son,
It should be thus with him: he must die tomorrow.
ISABELLATo-morrow! O, that's sudden! Spare him, spare him!
He's not prepared for death. Even for our kitchens
We kill the fowl of season: shall we serve heaven
Act 2 Sc 2 Ln 110With less respect than we do minister
To our gross selves? Good, good my lord, bethink you;
Who is it that hath died for this offence?
There's many have committed it.
LUCIO Ay, well said.
ANGELOAct 2 Sc 2 Ln 115The law hath not been dead, though it hath slept:
Those many had not dared to do that evil,
If the first that did the edict infringe
Had answer'd for his deed: now 'tis awake
Takes note of what is done; and, like a prophet,
Act 2 Sc 2 Ln 120Looks in a glass, that shows what future evils,
Either new, or by remissness new-conceived,
And so in progress to be hatch'd and born,
Are now to have no successive degrees,
But, ere they live, to end.
ISABELLAAct 2 Sc 2 Ln 125Yet show some pity.
ANGELOI show it most of all when I show justice;
For then I pity those I do not know,
Which a dismiss'd offence would after gall;
And do him right that, answering one foul wrong,
Act 2 Sc 2 Ln 130Lives not to act another. Be satisfied;
Your brother dies to-morrow; be content.
ISABELLASo you must be the first that gives this sentence,
And he, that suffer's. O, it is excellent
To have a giant's strength; but it is tyrannous
Act 2 Sc 2 Ln 135To use it like a giant.
LUCIO That's well said.
ISABELLACould great men thunder
As Jove himself does, Jove would ne'er be quiet,
For every pelting, petty officer
Act 2 Sc 2 Ln 140Would use his heaven for thunder;
Nothing but thunder! Merciful Heaven,
Thou rather with thy sharp and sulphurous bolt
Split'st the unwedgeable and gnarled oak
Than the soft myrtle: but man, proud man,
Act 2 Sc 2 Ln 145Drest in a little brief authority,
Most ignorant of what he's most assured,
His glassy essence, like an angry ape,
Plays such fantastic tricks before high heaven
As make the angels weep; who, with our spleens,
Act 2 Sc 2 Ln 150Would all themselves laugh mortal.
LUCIO O, to him, to him, wench! he
will relent;
He's coming; I perceive 't.
Provost Pray heaven she win him!
ISABELLAAct 2 Sc 2 Ln 155We cannot weigh our brother with ourself:
Great men may jest with saints; 'tis wit in them,
But in the less foul profanation.
LUCIOThou'rt i' the right, girl; more o, that.
ISABELLAThat in the captain's but a choleric word,
Act 2 Sc 2 Ln 160Which in the soldier is flat blasphemy.
LUCIO Art avised o' that? more on 't.
ANGELOWhy do you put these sayings upon me?
ISABELLABecause authority, though it err like others,
Hath yet a kind of medicine in itself,
Act 2 Sc 2 Ln 165That skins the vice o' the top. Go to your bosom;
Knock there, and ask your heart what it doth know
That's like my brother's fault: if it confess
A natural guiltiness such as is his,
Let it not sound a thought upon your tongue
Act 2 Sc 2 Ln 170Against my brother's life.
ANGELO She speaks, and 'tis
Such sense, that my sense breeds with it. Fare you well.
ISABELLAGentle my lord, turn back.
ANGELOI will bethink me: come again tomorrow.
ISABELLAAct 2 Sc 2 Ln 175Hark how I'll bribe you: good my lord, turn back.
ANGELOHow! bribe me?
ISABELLAAy, with such gifts that heaven shall share with you.
LUCIO You had marr'd all else.
ISABELLANot with fond shekels of the tested gold,
Act 2 Sc 2 Ln 180Or stones whose rates are either rich or poor
As fancy values them; but with true prayers
That shall be up at heaven and enter there
Ere sun-rise, prayers from preserved souls,
From fasting maids whose minds are dedicate
Act 2 Sc 2 Ln 185To nothing temporal.
ANGELOWell; come to me to-morrow.
LUCIO Go to; 'tis well; away!
ISABELLAHeaven keep your honour safe!
ANGELO Amen:
Act 2 Sc 2 Ln 190For I am that way going to temptation,
Where prayers cross.
ISABELLAAt what hour to-morrow
Shall I attend your lordship?
ANGELOAt any time 'fore noon.
ISABELLAAct 2 Sc 2 Ln 195'Save your honour!
ANGELOFrom thee, even from thy virtue!
What's this, what's this? Is this her fault or mine?
The tempter or the tempted, who sins most?
Ha!
Act 2 Sc 2 Ln 200Not she: nor doth she tempt: but it is I
That, lying by the violet in the sun,
Do as the carrion does, not as the flower,
Corrupt with virtuous season. Can it be
That modesty may more betray our sense
Act 2 Sc 2 Ln 205Than woman's lightness? Having waste ground enough,
Shall we desire to raze the sanctuary
And pitch our evils there? O, fie, fie, fie!
What dost thou, or what art thou, Angelo?
Dost thou desire her foully for those things
Act 2 Sc 2 Ln 210That make her good? O, let her brother live!
Thieves for their robbery have authority
When judges steal themselves. What, do I love her,
That I desire to hear her speak again,
And feast upon her eyes? What is't I dream on?
Act 2 Sc 2 Ln 215O cunning enemy, that, to catch a saint,
With saints dost bait thy hook! Most dangerous
Is that temptation that doth goad us on
To sin in loving virtue: never could the strumpet,
With all her double vigour, art and nature,
Act 2 Sc 2 Ln 220Once stir my temper; but this virtuous maid
Subdues me quite. Even till now,
When men were fond, I smiled and wonder'd how.

ACT II

SCENE III. A room in a prison.

DUKE VINCENTIOHail to you, provost! so I think you are.
ProvostI am the provost. What's your will, good friar?
DUKE VINCENTIOBound by my charity and my blest order,
I come to visit the afflicted spirits
Act 2 Sc 3 Ln 5Here in the prison. Do me the common right
To let me see them and to make me know
The nature of their crimes, that I may minister
To them accordingly.
ProvostI would do more than that, if more were needful.
Act 2 Sc 3 Ln 10Look, here comes one: a gentlewoman of mine,
Who, falling in the flaws of her own youth,
Hath blister'd her report: she is with child;
And he that got it, sentenced; a young man
More fit to do another such offence
Act 2 Sc 3 Ln 15Than die for this.
DUKE VINCENTIOWhen must he die?
ProvostAs I do think, to-morrow.
I have provided for you: stay awhile,
And you shall be conducted.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 2 Sc 3 Ln 20Repent you, fair one, of the sin you carry?
JULIETI do; and bear the shame most patiently.
DUKE VINCENTIOI'll teach you how you shall arraign your conscience,
And try your penitence, if it be sound,
Or hollowly put on.
JULIETAct 2 Sc 3 Ln 25I'll gladly learn.
DUKE VINCENTIOLove you the man that wrong'd you?
JULIETYes, as I love the woman that wrong'd him.
DUKE VINCENTIOSo then it seems your most offenceful act
Was mutually committed?
JULIETAct 2 Sc 3 Ln 30Mutually.
DUKE VINCENTIOThen was your sin of heavier kind than his.
JULIETI do confess it, and repent it, father.
DUKE VINCENTIO'Tis meet so, daughter: but lest you do repent,
As that the sin hath brought you to this shame,
Act 2 Sc 3 Ln 35Which sorrow is always towards ourselves, not heaven,
Showing we would not spare heaven as we love it,
But as we stand in fear, —
JULIETI do repent me, as it is an evil,
And take the shame with joy.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 2 Sc 3 Ln 40There rest.
Your partner, as I hear, must die to-morrow,
And I am going with instruction to him.
Grace go with you, Benedicite!
JULIETMust die to-morrow! O injurious love,
Act 2 Sc 3 Ln 45That respites me a life, whose very comfort
Is still a dying horror!
Provost'Tis pity of him.

ACT II

SCENE IV. A room in ANGELO's house.

ANGELOWhen I would pray and think, I think and pray
To several subjects. Heaven hath my empty words;
Whilst my invention, hearing not my tongue,
Anchors on Isabel: Heaven in my mouth,
Act 2 Sc 4 Ln 5As if I did but only chew his name;
And in my heart the strong and swelling evil
Of my conception. The state, whereon I studied
Is like a good thing, being often read,
Grown fear'd and tedious; yea, my gravity,
Act 2 Sc 4 Ln 10Wherein — let no man hear me — I take pride,
Could I with boot change for an idle plume,
Which the air beats for vain. O place, O form,
How often dost thou with thy case, thy habit,
Wrench awe from fools and tie the wiser souls
Act 2 Sc 4 Ln 15To thy false seeming! Blood, thou art blood:
Let's write good angel on the devil's horn:
'Tis not the devil's crest.
How now! who's there?
ServantOne Isabel, a sister, desires access to you.
ANGELOAct 2 Sc 4 Ln 20Teach her the way.
O heavens!
Why does my blood thus muster to my heart,
Making both it unable for itself,
And dispossessing all my other parts
Act 2 Sc 4 Ln 25Of necessary fitness?
So play the foolish throngs with one that swoons;
Come all to help him, and so stop the air
By which he should revive: and even so
The general, subject to a well-wish'd king,
Act 2 Sc 4 Ln 30Quit their own part, and in obsequious fondness
Crowd to his presence, where their untaught love
Must needs appear offence.
How now, fair maid?
ISABELLAI am come to know your pleasure.
ANGELOAct 2 Sc 4 Ln 35That you might know it, would much better please me
Than to demand what 'tis. Your brother cannot live.
ISABELLAEven so. Heaven keep your honour!
ANGELOYet may he live awhile; and, it may be,
As long as you or I yet he must die.
ISABELLAAct 2 Sc 4 Ln 40Under your sentence?
ANGELOYea.
ISABELLAWhen, I beseech you? that in his reprieve,
Longer or shorter, he may be so fitted
That his soul sicken not.
ANGELOAct 2 Sc 4 Ln 45Ha! fie, these filthy vices! It were as good
To pardon him that hath from nature stolen
A man already made, as to remit
Their saucy sweetness that do coin heaven's image
In stamps that are forbid: 'tis all as easy
Act 2 Sc 4 Ln 50Falsely to take away a life true made
As to put metal in restrained means
To make a false one.
ISABELLA'Tis set down so in heaven, but not in earth.
ANGELOSay you so? then I shall pose you quickly.
Act 2 Sc 4 Ln 55Which had you rather, that the most just law
Now took your brother's life; or, to redeem him,
Give up your body to such sweet uncleanness
As she that he hath stain'd?
ISABELLASir, believe this,
Act 2 Sc 4 Ln 60I had rather give my body than my soul.
ANGELOI talk not of your soul: our compell'd sins
Stand more for number than for accompt.
ISABELLAHow say you?
ANGELONay, I'll not warrant that; for I can speak
Act 2 Sc 4 Ln 65Against the thing I say. Answer to this:
I, now the voice of the recorded law,
Pronounce a sentence on your brother's life:
Might there not be a charity in sin
To save this brother's life?
ISABELLAAct 2 Sc 4 Ln 70Please you to do't,
I'll take it as a peril to my soul,
It is no sin at all, but charity.
ANGELOPleased you to do't at peril of your soul,
Were equal poise of sin and charity.
ISABELLAAct 2 Sc 4 Ln 75That I do beg his life, if it be sin,
Heaven let me bear it! you granting of my suit,
If that be sin, I'll make it my morn prayer
To have it added to the faults of mine,
And nothing of your answer.
ANGELOAct 2 Sc 4 Ln 80Nay, but hear me.
Your sense pursues not mine: either you are ignorant,
Or seem so craftily; and that's not good.
ISABELLALet me be ignorant, and in nothing good,
But graciously to know I am no better.
ANGELOAct 2 Sc 4 Ln 85Thus wisdom wishes to appear most bright
When it doth tax itself; as these black masks
Proclaim an enshield beauty ten times louder
Than beauty could, display'd. But mark me;
To be received plain, I'll speak more gross:
Act 2 Sc 4 Ln 90Your brother is to die.
ISABELLASo.
ANGELOAnd his offence is so, as it appears,
Accountant to the law upon that pain.
ISABELLATrue.
ANGELOAct 2 Sc 4 Ln 95Admit no other way to save his life, —
As I subscribe not that, nor any other,
But in the loss of question, — that you, his sister,
Finding yourself desired of such a person,
Whose credit with the judge, or own great place,
Act 2 Sc 4 Ln 100Could fetch your brother from the manacles
Of the all-building law; and that there were
No earthly mean to save him, but that either
You must lay down the treasures of your body
To this supposed, or else to let him suffer;
Act 2 Sc 4 Ln 105What would you do?
ISABELLAAs much for my poor brother as myself:
That is, were I under the terms of death,
The impression of keen whips I'ld wear as rubies,
And strip myself to death, as to a bed
Act 2 Sc 4 Ln 110That longing have been sick for, ere I'ld yield
My body up to shame.
ANGELOThen must your brother die.
ISABELLAAnd 'twere the cheaper way:
Better it were a brother died at once,
Act 2 Sc 4 Ln 115Than that a sister, by redeeming him,
Should die for ever.
ANGELOWere not you then as cruel as the sentence
That you have slander'd so?
ISABELLAIgnomy in ransom and free pardon
Act 2 Sc 4 Ln 120Are of two houses: lawful mercy
Is nothing kin to foul redemption.
ANGELOYou seem'd of late to make the law a tyrant;
And rather proved the sliding of your brother
A merriment than a vice.
ISABELLAAct 2 Sc 4 Ln 125O, pardon me, my lord; it oft falls out,
To have what we would have, we speak not what we mean:
I something do excuse the thing I hate,
For his advantage that I dearly love.
ANGELOWe are all frail.
ISABELLAAct 2 Sc 4 Ln 130Else let my brother die,
If not a feodary, but only he
Owe and succeed thy weakness.
ANGELONay, women are frail too.
ISABELLAAy, as the glasses where they view themselves;
Act 2 Sc 4 Ln 135Which are as easy broke as they make forms.
Women! Help Heaven! men their creation mar
In profiting by them. Nay, call us ten times frail;
For we are soft as our complexions are,
And credulous to false prints.
ANGELOAct 2 Sc 4 Ln 140I think it well:
And from this testimony of your own sex, —
Since I suppose we are made to be no stronger
Than faults may shake our frames, — let me be bold;
I do arrest your words. Be that you are,
Act 2 Sc 4 Ln 145That is, a woman; if you be more, you're none;
If you be one, as you are well express'd
By all external warrants, show it now,
By putting on the destined livery.
ISABELLAI have no tongue but one: gentle my lord,
Act 2 Sc 4 Ln 150Let me entreat you speak the former language.
ANGELOPlainly conceive, I love you.
ISABELLAMy brother did love Juliet,
And you tell me that he shall die for it.
ANGELOHe shall not, Isabel, if you give me love.
ISABELLAAct 2 Sc 4 Ln 155I know your virtue hath a licence in't,
Which seems a little fouler than it is,
To pluck on others.
ANGELOBelieve me, on mine honour,
My words express my purpose.
ISABELLAAct 2 Sc 4 Ln 160Ha! little honour to be much believed,
And most pernicious purpose! Seeming, seeming!
I will proclaim thee, Angelo; look for't:
Sign me a present pardon for my brother,
Or with an outstretch'd throat I'll tell the world aloud
Act 2 Sc 4 Ln 165What man thou art.
ANGELOWho will believe thee, Isabel?
My unsoil'd name, the austereness of my life,
My vouch against you, and my place i' the state,
Will so your accusation overweigh,
Act 2 Sc 4 Ln 170That you shall stifle in your own report
And smell of calumny. I have begun,
And now I give my sensual race the rein:
Fit thy consent to my sharp appetite;
Lay by all nicety and prolixious blushes,
Act 2 Sc 4 Ln 175That banish what they sue for; redeem thy brother
By yielding up thy body to my will;
Or else he must not only die the death,
But thy unkindness shall his death draw out
To lingering sufferance. Answer me to-morrow,
Act 2 Sc 4 Ln 180Or, by the affection that now guides me most,
I'll prove a tyrant to him. As for you,
Say what you can, my false o'erweighs your true.
ISABELLATo whom should I complain? Did I tell this,
Who would believe me? O perilous mouths,
Act 2 Sc 4 Ln 185That bear in them one and the self-same tongue,
Either of condemnation or approof;
Bidding the law make court'sy to their will:
Hooking both right and wrong to the appetite,
To follow as it draws! I'll to my brother:
Act 2 Sc 4 Ln 190Though he hath fallen by prompture of the blood,
Yet hath he in him such a mind of honour.
That, had he twenty heads to tender down
On twenty bloody blocks, he'ld yield them up,
Before his sister should her body stoop
Act 2 Sc 4 Ln 195To such abhorr'd pollution.
Then, Isabel, live chaste, and, brother, die:
More than our brother is our chastity.
I'll tell him yet of Angelo's request,
And fit his mind to death, for his soul's rest.

ACT III

SCENE I. A room in the prison.

DUKE VINCENTIOSo then you hope of pardon from Lord Angelo?
CLAUDIOThe miserable have no other medicine
But only hope:
I've hope to live, and am prepared to die.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 3 Sc 1 Ln 5Be absolute for death; either death or life
Shall thereby be the sweeter. Reason thus with life:
If I do lose thee, I do lose a thing
That none but fools would keep: a breath thou art,
Servile to all the skyey influences,
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 10That dost this habitation, where thou keep'st,
Hourly afflict: merely, thou art death's fool;
For him thou labour'st by thy flight to shun
And yet runn'st toward him still. Thou art not noble;
For all the accommodations that thou bear'st
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 15Are nursed by baseness. Thou'rt by no means valiant;
For thou dost fear the soft and tender fork
Of a poor worm. Thy best of rest is sleep,
And that thou oft provokest; yet grossly fear'st
Thy death, which is no more. Thou art not thyself;
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 20For thou exist'st on many a thousand grains
That issue out of dust. Happy thou art not;
For what thou hast not, still thou strivest to get,
And what thou hast, forget'st. Thou art not certain;
For thy complexion shifts to strange effects,
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 25After the moon. If thou art rich, thou'rt poor;
For, like an ass whose back with ingots bows,
Thou bear's thy heavy riches but a journey,
And death unloads thee. Friend hast thou none;
For thine own bowels, which do call thee sire,
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 30The mere effusion of thy proper loins,
Do curse the gout, serpigo, and the rheum,
For ending thee no sooner. Thou hast nor youth nor age,
But, as it were, an after-dinner's sleep,
Dreaming on both; for all thy blessed youth
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 35Becomes as aged, and doth beg the alms
Of palsied eld; and when thou art old and rich,
Thou hast neither heat, affection, limb, nor beauty,
To make thy riches pleasant. What's yet in this
That bears the name of life? Yet in this life
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 40Lie hid moe thousand deaths: yet death we fear,
That makes these odds all even.
CLAUDIOI humbly thank you.
To sue to live, I find I seek to die;
And, seeking death, find life: let it come on.
ISABELLAAct 3 Sc 1 Ln 45 What, ho! Peace here; grace and good company!
ProvostWho's there? come in: the wish deserves a welcome.
DUKE VINCENTIODear sir, ere long I'll visit you again.
CLAUDIOMost holy sir, I thank you.
ISABELLAMy business is a word or two with Claudio.
ProvostAct 3 Sc 1 Ln 50And very welcome. Look, signior, here's your sister.
DUKE VINCENTIOProvost, a word with you.
ProvostAs many as you please.
DUKE VINCENTIOBring me to hear them speak, where I may be concealed.
CLAUDIONow, sister, what's the comfort?
ISABELLAAct 3 Sc 1 Ln 55Why,
As all comforts are; most good, most good indeed.
Lord Angelo, having affairs to heaven,
Intends you for his swift ambassador,
Where you shall be an everlasting leiger:
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 60Therefore your best appointment make with speed;
To-morrow you set on.
CLAUDIOIs there no remedy?
ISABELLANone, but such remedy as, to save a head,
To cleave a heart in twain.
CLAUDIOAct 3 Sc 1 Ln 65But is there any?
ISABELLAYes, brother, you may live:
There is a devilish mercy in the judge,
If you'll implore it, that will free your life,
But fetter you till death.
CLAUDIOAct 3 Sc 1 Ln 70Perpetual durance?
ISABELLAAy, just; perpetual durance, a restraint,
Though all the world's vastidity you had,
To a determined scope.
CLAUDIOBut in what nature?
ISABELLAAct 3 Sc 1 Ln 75In such a one as, you consenting to't,
Would bark your honour from that trunk you bear,
And leave you naked.
CLAUDIOLet me know the point.
ISABELLAO, I do fear thee, Claudio; and I quake,
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 80Lest thou a feverous life shouldst entertain,
And six or seven winters more respect
Than a perpetual honour. Darest thou die?
The sense of death is most in apprehension;
And the poor beetle, that we tread upon,
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 85In corporal sufferance finds a pang as great
As when a giant dies.
CLAUDIOWhy give you me this shame?
Think you I can a resolution fetch
From flowery tenderness? If I must die,
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 90I will encounter darkness as a bride,
And hug it in mine arms.
ISABELLAThere spake my brother; there my father's grave
Did utter forth a voice. Yes, thou must die:
Thou art too noble to conserve a life
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 95In base appliances. This outward-sainted deputy,
Whose settled visage and deliberate word
Nips youth i' the head and follies doth emmew
As falcon doth the fowl, is yet a devil
His filth within being cast, he would appear
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 100A pond as deep as hell.
CLAUDIOThe prenzie Angelo!
ISABELLAO, 'tis the cunning livery of hell,
The damned'st body to invest and cover
In prenzie guards! Dost thou think, Claudio?
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 105If I would yield him my virginity,
Thou mightst be freed.
CLAUDIOO heavens! it cannot be.
ISABELLAYes, he would give't thee, from this rank offence,
So to offend him still. This night's the time
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 110That I should do what I abhor to name,
Or else thou diest to-morrow.
CLAUDIOThou shalt not do't.
ISABELLAO, were it but my life,
I'ld throw it down for your deliverance
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 115As frankly as a pin.
CLAUDIOThanks, dear Isabel.
ISABELLABe ready, Claudio, for your death tomorrow.
CLAUDIOYes. Has he affections in him,
That thus can make him bite the law by the nose,
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 120When he would force it? Sure, it is no sin,
Or of the deadly seven, it is the least.
ISABELLAWhich is the least?
CLAUDIOIf it were damnable, he being so wise,
Why would he for the momentary trick
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 125Be perdurably fined? O Isabel!
ISABELLAWhat says my brother?
CLAUDIODeath is a fearful thing.
ISABELLAAnd shamed life a hateful.
CLAUDIOAy, but to die, and go we know not where;
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 130To lie in cold obstruction and to rot;
This sensible warm motion to become
A kneaded clod; and the delighted spirit
To bathe in fiery floods, or to reside
In thrilling region of thick-ribbed ice;
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 135To be imprison'd in the viewless winds,
And blown with restless violence round about
The pendent world; or to be worse than worst
Of those that lawless and incertain thought
Imagine howling: 'tis too horrible!
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 140The weariest and most loathed worldly life
That age, ache, penury and imprisonment
Can lay on nature is a paradise
To what we fear of death.
ISABELLAAlas, alas!
CLAUDIOAct 3 Sc 1 Ln 145Sweet sister, let me live:
What sin you do to save a brother's life,
Nature dispenses with the deed so far
That it becomes a virtue.
ISABELLAO you beast!
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 150O faithless coward! O dishonest wretch!
Wilt thou be made a man out of my vice?
Is't not a kind of incest, to take life
From thine own sister's shame? What should I think?
Heaven shield my mother play'd my father fair!
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 155For such a warped slip of wilderness
Ne'er issued from his blood. Take my defiance!
Die, perish! Might but my bending down
Reprieve thee from thy fate, it should proceed:
I'll pray a thousand prayers for thy death,
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 160No word to save thee.
CLAUDIONay, hear me, Isabel.
ISABELLAO, fie, fie, fie!
Thy sin's not accidental, but a trade.
Mercy to thee would prove itself a bawd:
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 165'Tis best thou diest quickly.
CLAUDIOO hear me, Isabella!
DUKE VINCENTIOVouchsafe a word, young sister, but one word.
ISABELLAWhat is your will?
DUKE VINCENTIOMight you dispense with your leisure, I would by and
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 170by have some speech with you: the satisfaction I
would require is likewise your own benefit.
ISABELLAI have no superfluous leisure; my stay must be
stolen out of other affairs; but I will attend you awhile.
DUKE VINCENTIOSon, I have overheard what hath passed between you
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 175and your sister. Angelo had never the purpose to
corrupt her; only he hath made an essay of her
virtue to practise his judgment with the disposition
of natures: she, having the truth of honour in her,
hath made him that gracious denial which he is most
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 180glad to receive. I am confessor to Angelo, and I
know this to be true; therefore prepare yourself to
death: do not satisfy your resolution with hopes
that are fallible: tomorrow you must die; go to
your knees and make ready.
CLAUDIOAct 3 Sc 1 Ln 185Let me ask my sister pardon. I am so out of love
with life that I will sue to be rid of it.
DUKE VINCENTIOHold you there: farewell.
Provost, a word with you!
ProvostWhat's your will, father
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 3 Sc 1 Ln 190That now you are come, you will be gone. Leave me
awhile with the maid: my mind promises with my
habit no loss shall touch her by my company.
ProvostIn good time.
DUKE VINCENTIOThe hand that hath made you fair hath made you good:
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 195the goodness that is cheap in beauty makes beauty
brief in goodness; but grace, being the soul of
your complexion, shall keep the body of it ever
fair. The assault that Angelo hath made to you,
fortune hath conveyed to my understanding; and, but
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 200that frailty hath examples for his falling, I should
wonder at Angelo. How will you do to content this
substitute, and to save your brother?
ISABELLAI am now going to resolve him: I had rather my
brother die by the law than my son should be
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 205unlawfully born. But, O, how much is the good duke
deceived in Angelo! If ever he return and I can
speak to him, I will open my lips in vain, or
discover his government.
DUKE VINCENTIOThat shall not be much amiss: Yet, as the matter
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 210now stands, he will avoid your accusation; he made
trial of you only. Therefore fasten your ear on my
advisings: to the love I have in doing good a
remedy presents itself. I do make myself believe
that you may most uprighteously do a poor wronged
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 215lady a merited benefit; redeem your brother from
the angry law; do no stain to your own gracious
person; and much please the absent duke, if
peradventure he shall ever return to have hearing of
this business.
ISABELLAAct 3 Sc 1 Ln 220Let me hear you speak farther. I have spirit to do
anything that appears not foul in the truth of my spirit.
DUKE VINCENTIOVirtue is bold, and goodness never fearful. Have
you not heard speak of Mariana, the sister of
Frederick the great soldier who miscarried at sea?
ISABELLAAct 3 Sc 1 Ln 225I have heard of the lady, and good words went with her name.
DUKE VINCENTIOShe should this Angelo have married; was affianced
to her by oath, and the nuptial appointed: between
which time of the contract and limit of the
solemnity, her brother Frederick was wrecked at sea,
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 230having in that perished vessel the dowry of his
sister. But mark how heavily this befell to the
poor gentlewoman: there she lost a noble and
renowned brother, in his love toward her ever most
kind and natural; with him, the portion and sinew of
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 235her fortune, her marriage-dowry; with both, her
combinate husband, this well-seeming Angelo.
ISABELLACan this be so? did Angelo so leave her?
DUKE VINCENTIOLeft her in her tears, and dried not one of them
with his comfort; swallowed his vows whole,
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 240pretending in her discoveries of dishonour: in few,
bestowed her on her own lamentation, which she yet
wears for his sake; and he, a marble to her tears,
is washed with them, but relents not.
ISABELLAWhat a merit were it in death to take this poor maid
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 245from the world! What corruption in this life, that
it will let this man live! But how out of this can she avail?
DUKE VINCENTIOIt is a rupture that you may easily heal: and the
cure of it not only saves your brother, but keeps
you from dishonour in doing it.
ISABELLAAct 3 Sc 1 Ln 250Show me how, good father.
DUKE VINCENTIOThis forenamed maid hath yet in her the continuance
of her first affection: his unjust unkindness, that
in all reason should have quenched her love, hath,
like an impediment in the current, made it more
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 255violent and unruly. Go you to Angelo; answer his
requiring with a plausible obedience; agree with
his demands to the point; only refer yourself to
this advantage, first, that your stay with him may
not be long; that the time may have all shadow and
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 260silence in it; and the place answer to convenience.
This being granted in course, — and now follows
all, — we shall advise this wronged maid to stead up
your appointment, go in your place; if the encounter
acknowledge itself hereafter, it may compel him to
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 265her recompense: and here, by this, is your brother
saved, your honour untainted, the poor Mariana
advantaged, and the corrupt deputy scaled. The maid
will I frame and make fit for his attempt. If you
think well to carry this as you may, the doubleness
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 270of the benefit defends the deceit from reproof.
What think you of it?
ISABELLAThe image of it gives me content already; and I
trust it will grow to a most prosperous perfection.
DUKE VINCENTIOIt lies much in your holding up. Haste you speedily
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 275to Angelo: if for this night he entreat you to his
bed, give him promise of satisfaction. I will
presently to Saint Luke's: there, at the moated
grange, resides this dejected Mariana. At that
place call upon me; and dispatch with Angelo, that
Act 3 Sc 1 Ln 280it may be quickly.
ISABELLAI thank you for this comfort. Fare you well, good father.

ACT III

SCENE II. The street before the prison.

ELBOWNay, if there be no remedy for it, but that you will
needs buy and sell men and women like beasts, we
shall have all the world drink brown and white bastard.
DUKE VINCENTIOO heavens! what stuff is here
POMPEYAct 3 Sc 2 Ln 5'Twas never merry world since, of two usuries, the
merriest was put down, and the worser allowed by
order of law a furred gown to keep him warm; and
furred with fox and lamb-skins too, to signify, that
craft, being richer than innocency, stands for the facing.
ELBOWAct 3 Sc 2 Ln 10Come your way, sir. 'Bless you, good father friar.
DUKE VINCENTIOAnd you, good brother father. What offence hath
this man made you, sir?
ELBOWMarry, sir, he hath offended the law: and, sir, we
take him to be a thief too, sir; for we have found
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 15upon him, sir, a strange picklock, which we have
sent to the deputy.
DUKE VINCENTIOFie, sirrah! a bawd, a wicked bawd!
The evil that thou causest to be done,
That is thy means to live. Do thou but think
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 20What 'tis to cram a maw or clothe a back
From such a filthy vice: say to thyself,
From their abominable and beastly touches
I drink, I eat, array myself, and live.
Canst thou believe thy living is a life,
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 25So stinkingly depending? Go mend, go mend.
POMPEYIndeed, it does stink in some sort, sir; but yet,
sir, I would prove —
DUKE VINCENTIONay, if the devil have given thee proofs for sin,
Thou wilt prove his. Take him to prison, officer:
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 30Correction and instruction must both work
Ere this rude beast will profit.
ELBOWHe must before the deputy, sir; he has given him
warning: the deputy cannot abide a whoremaster: if
he be a whoremonger, and comes before him, he were
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 35as good go a mile on his errand.
DUKE VINCENTIOThat we were all, as some would seem to be,
From our faults, as faults from seeming, free!
ELBOWHis neck will come to your waist, — a cord, sir.
POMPEYI spy comfort; I cry bail. Here's a gentleman and a
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 40friend of mine.
LUCIOHow now, noble Pompey! What, at the wheels of
Caesar? art thou led in triumph? What, is there
none of Pygmalion's images, newly made woman, to be
had now, for putting the hand in the pocket and
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 45extracting it clutch'd? What reply, ha? What
sayest thou to this tune, matter and method? Is't
not drowned i' the last rain, ha? What sayest
thou, Trot? Is the world as it was, man? Which is
the way? Is it sad, and few words? or how? The
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 50trick of it?
DUKE VINCENTIOStill thus, and thus; still worse!
LUCIOHow doth my dear morsel, thy mistress? Procures she
still, ha?
POMPEYTroth, sir, she hath eaten up all her beef, and she
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 55is herself in the tub.
LUCIOWhy, 'tis good; it is the right of it; it must be
so: ever your fresh whore and your powdered bawd:
an unshunned consequence; it must be so. Art going
to prison, Pompey?
POMPEYAct 3 Sc 2 Ln 60Yes, faith, sir.
LUCIOWhy, 'tis not amiss, Pompey. Farewell: go, say I
sent thee thither. For debt, Pompey? or how?
ELBOWFor being a bawd, for being a bawd.
LUCIOWell, then, imprison him: if imprisonment be the
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 65due of a bawd, why, 'tis his right: bawd is he
doubtless, and of antiquity too; bawd-born.
Farewell, good Pompey. Commend me to the prison,
Pompey: you will turn good husband now, Pompey; you
will keep the house.
POMPEYAct 3 Sc 2 Ln 70I hope, sir, your good worship will be my bail.
LUCIONo, indeed, will I not, Pompey; it is not the wear.
I will pray, Pompey, to increase your bondage: If
you take it not patiently, why, your mettle is the
more. Adieu, trusty Pompey. 'Bless you, friar.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 3 Sc 2 Ln 75And you.
LUCIODoes Bridget paint still, Pompey, ha?
ELBOWCome your ways, sir; come.
POMPEYYou will not bail me, then, sir?
LUCIOThen, Pompey, nor now. What news abroad, friar?
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 80what news?
ELBOWCome your ways, sir; come.
LUCIOGo to kennel, Pompey; go.
What news, friar, of the duke?
DUKE VINCENTIOI know none. Can you tell me of any?
LUCIOAct 3 Sc 2 Ln 85Some say he is with the Emperor of Russia; other
some, he is in Rome: but where is he, think you?
DUKE VINCENTIOI know not where; but wheresoever, I wish him well.
LUCIOIt was a mad fantastical trick of him to steal from
the state, and usurp the beggary he was never born
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 90to. Lord Angelo dukes it well in his absence; he
puts transgression to 't.
DUKE VINCENTIOHe does well in 't.
LUCIOA little more lenity to lechery would do no harm in
him: something too crabbed that way, friar.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 3 Sc 2 Ln 95It is too general a vice, and severity must cure it.
LUCIOYes, in good sooth, the vice is of a great kindred;
it is well allied: but it is impossible to extirp
it quite, friar, till eating and drinking be put
down. They say this Angelo was not made by man and
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 100woman after this downright way of creation: is it
true, think you?
DUKE VINCENTIOHow should he be made, then?
LUCIOSome report a sea-maid spawned him; some, that he
was begot between two stock-fishes. But it is
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 105certain that when he makes water his urine is
congealed ice; that I know to be true: and he is a
motion generative; that's infallible.
DUKE VINCENTIOYou are pleasant, sir, and speak apace.
LUCIOWhy, what a ruthless thing is this in him, for the
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 110rebellion of a codpiece to take away the life of a
man! Would the duke that is absent have done this?
Ere he would have hanged a man for the getting a
hundred bastards, he would have paid for the nursing
a thousand: he had some feeling of the sport: he
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 115knew the service, and that instructed him to mercy.
DUKE VINCENTIOI never heard the absent duke much detected for
women; he was not inclined that way.
LUCIOO, sir, you are deceived.
DUKE VINCENTIO'Tis not possible.
LUCIOAct 3 Sc 2 Ln 120Who, not the duke? yes, your beggar of fifty; and
his use was to put a ducat in her clack-dish: the
duke had crotchets in him. He would be drunk too;
that let me inform you.
DUKE VINCENTIOYou do him wrong, surely.
LUCIOAct 3 Sc 2 Ln 125Sir, I was an inward of his. A shy fellow was the
duke: and I believe I know the cause of his
withdrawing.
DUKE VINCENTIOWhat, I prithee, might be the cause?
LUCIONo, pardon; 'tis a secret must be locked within the
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 130teeth and the lips: but this I can let you
understand, the greater file of the subject held the
duke to be wise.
DUKE VINCENTIOWise! why, no question but he was.
LUCIOA very superficial, ignorant, unweighing fellow.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 3 Sc 2 Ln 135Either this is the envy in you, folly, or mistaking:
the very stream of his life and the business he hath
helmed must upon a warranted need give him a better
proclamation. Let him be but testimonied in his own
bringings-forth, and he shall appear to the
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 140envious a scholar, a statesman and a soldier.
Therefore you speak unskilfully: or if your
knowledge be more it is much darkened in your malice.
LUCIOSir, I know him, and I love him.
DUKE VINCENTIOLove talks with better knowledge, and knowledge with
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 145dearer love.
LUCIOCome, sir, I know what I know.
DUKE VINCENTIOI can hardly believe that, since you know not what
you speak. But, if ever the duke return, as our
prayers are he may, let me desire you to make your
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 150answer before him. If it be honest you have spoke,
you have courage to maintain it: I am bound to call
upon you; and, I pray you, your name?
LUCIOSir, my name is Lucio; well known to the duke.
DUKE VINCENTIOHe shall know you better, sir, if I may live to
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 155report you.
LUCIOI fear you not.
DUKE VINCENTIOO, you hope the duke will return no more; or you
imagine me too unhurtful an opposite. But indeed I
can do you little harm; you'll forswear this again.
LUCIOAct 3 Sc 2 Ln 160I'll be hanged first: thou art deceived in me,
friar. But no more of this. Canst thou tell if
Claudio die to-morrow or no?
DUKE VINCENTIOWhy should he die, sir?
LUCIOWhy? For filling a bottle with a tundish. I would
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 165the duke we talk of were returned again: the
ungenitured agent will unpeople the province with
continency; sparrows must not build in his
house-eaves, because they are lecherous. The duke
yet would have dark deeds darkly answered; he would
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 170never bring them to light: would he were returned!
Marry, this Claudio is condemned for untrussing.
Farewell, good friar: I prithee, pray for me. The
duke, I say to thee again, would eat mutton on
Fridays. He's not past it yet, and I say to thee,
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 175he would mouth with a beggar, though she smelt brown
bread and garlic: say that I said so. Farewell.
DUKE VINCENTIONo might nor greatness in mortality
Can censure 'scape; back-wounding calumny
The whitest virtue strikes. What king so strong
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 180Can tie the gall up in the slanderous tongue?
But who comes here?
ESCALUSGo; away with her to prison!
MISTRESS OVERDONEGood my lord, be good to me; your honour is accounted
a merciful man; good my lord.
ESCALUSAct 3 Sc 2 Ln 185Double and treble admonition, and still forfeit in
the same kind! This would make mercy swear and play
the tyrant.
ProvostA bawd of eleven years' continuance, may it please
your honour.
MISTRESS OVERDONEAct 3 Sc 2 Ln 190My lord, this is one Lucio's information against me.
Mistress Kate Keepdown was with child by him in the
duke's time; he promised her marriage: his child
is a year and a quarter old, come Philip and Jacob:
I have kept it myself; and see how he goes about to abuse me!
ESCALUSAct 3 Sc 2 Ln 195That fellow is a fellow of much licence: let him be
called before us. Away with her to prison! Go to;
no more words.
Provost, my brother Angelo will not be altered;
Claudio must die to-morrow: let him be furnished
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 200with divines, and have all charitable preparation.
if my brother wrought by my pity, it should not be
so with him.
ProvostSo please you, this friar hath been with him, and
advised him for the entertainment of death.
ESCALUSAct 3 Sc 2 Ln 205Good even, good father.
DUKE VINCENTIOBliss and goodness on you!
ESCALUSOf whence are you?
DUKE VINCENTIONot of this country, though my chance is now
To use it for my time: I am a brother
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 210Of gracious order, late come from the See
In special business from his holiness.
ESCALUSWhat news abroad i' the world?
DUKE VINCENTIONone, but that there is so great a fever on
goodness, that the dissolution of it must cure it:
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 215novelty is only in request; and it is as dangerous
to be aged in any kind of course, as it is virtuous
to be constant in any undertaking. There is scarce
truth enough alive to make societies secure; but
security enough to make fellowships accurst: much
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 220upon this riddle runs the wisdom of the world. This
news is old enough, yet it is every day's news. I
pray you, sir, of what disposition was the duke?
ESCALUSOne that, above all other strifes, contended
especially to know himself.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 3 Sc 2 Ln 225What pleasure was he given to?
ESCALUSRather rejoicing to see another merry, than merry at
any thing which professed to make him rejoice: a
gentleman of all temperance. But leave we him to
his events, with a prayer they may prove prosperous;
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 230and let me desire to know how you find Claudio
prepared. I am made to understand that you have
lent him visitation.
DUKE VINCENTIOHe professes to have received no sinister measure
from his judge, but most willingly humbles himself
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 235to the determination of justice: yet had he framed
to himself, by the instruction of his frailty, many
deceiving promises of life; which I by my good
leisure have discredited to him, and now is he
resolved to die.
ESCALUSAct 3 Sc 2 Ln 240You have paid the heavens your function, and the
prisoner the very debt of your calling. I have
laboured for the poor gentleman to the extremest
shore of my modesty: but my brother justice have I
found so severe, that he hath forced me to tell him
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 245he is indeed Justice.
DUKE VINCENTIOIf his own life answer the straitness of his
proceeding, it shall become him well; wherein if he
chance to fail, he hath sentenced himself.
ESCALUSI am going to visit the prisoner. Fare you well.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 3 Sc 2 Ln 250Peace be with you!
He who the sword of heaven will bear
Should be as holy as severe;
Pattern in himself to know,
Grace to stand, and virtue go;
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 255More nor less to others paying
Than by self-offences weighing.
Shame to him whose cruel striking
Kills for faults of his own liking!
Twice treble shame on Angelo,
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 260To weed my vice and let his grow!
O, what may man within him hide,
Though angel on the outward side!
How may likeness made in crimes,
Making practise on the times,
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 265To draw with idle spiders' strings
Most ponderous and substantial things!
Craft against vice I must apply:
With Angelo to-night shall lie
His old betrothed but despised;
Act 3 Sc 2 Ln 270So disguise shall, by the disguised,
Pay with falsehood false exacting,
And perform an old contracting.

ACT IV

SCENE I. The moated grange at ST. LUKE's.

SPEAKERTake, O, take those lips away,
That so sweetly were forsworn;
And those eyes, the break of day,
Lights that do mislead the morn:
Act 4 Sc 1 Ln 5But my kisses bring again, bring again;
Seals of love, but sealed in vain, sealed in vain.
MARIANABreak off thy song, and haste thee quick away:
Here comes a man of comfort, whose advice
Hath often still'd my brawling discontent.
Act 4 Sc 1 Ln 10I cry you mercy, sir; and well could wish
You had not found me here so musical:
Let me excuse me, and believe me so,
My mirth it much displeased, but pleased my woe.
DUKE VINCENTIO'Tis good; though music oft hath such a charm
Act 4 Sc 1 Ln 15To make bad good, and good provoke to harm.
I pray, you, tell me, hath any body inquired
for me here to-day? much upon this time have
I promised here to meet.
MARIANAYou have not been inquired after:
Act 4 Sc 1 Ln 20I have sat here all day.
DUKE VINCENTIOI do constantly believe you. The time is come even
now. I shall crave your forbearance a little: may
be I will call upon you anon, for some advantage to yourself.
MARIANAI am always bound to you.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 4 Sc 1 Ln 25Very well met, and well come.
What is the news from this good deputy?
ISABELLAHe hath a garden circummured with brick,
Whose western side is with a vineyard back'd;
And to that vineyard is a planched gate,
Act 4 Sc 1 Ln 30That makes his opening with this bigger key:
This other doth command a little door
Which from the vineyard to the garden leads;
There have I made my promise
Upon the heavy middle of the night
Act 4 Sc 1 Ln 35To call upon him.
DUKE VINCENTIOBut shall you on your knowledge find this way?
ISABELLAI have ta'en a due and wary note upon't:
With whispering and most guilty diligence,
In action all of precept, he did show me
Act 4 Sc 1 Ln 40The way twice o'er.
DUKE VINCENTIOAre there no other tokens
Between you 'greed concerning her observance?
ISABELLANo, none, but only a repair i' the dark;
And that I have possess'd him my most stay
Act 4 Sc 1 Ln 45Can be but brief; for I have made him know
I have a servant comes with me along,
That stays upon me, whose persuasion is
I come about my brother.
DUKE VINCENTIO'Tis well borne up.
Act 4 Sc 1 Ln 50I have not yet made known to Mariana
A word of this. What, ho! within! come forth!
I pray you, be acquainted with this maid;
She comes to do you good.
ISABELLAI do desire the like.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 4 Sc 1 Ln 55Do you persuade yourself that I respect you?
MARIANAGood friar, I know you do, and have found it.
DUKE VINCENTIOTake, then, this your companion by the hand,
Who hath a story ready for your ear.
I shall attend your leisure: but make haste;
Act 4 Sc 1 Ln 60The vaporous night approaches.
MARIANAWill't please you walk aside?
DUKE VINCENTIOO place and greatness! millions of false eyes
Are stuck upon thee: volumes of report
Run with these false and most contrarious quests
Act 4 Sc 1 Ln 65Upon thy doings: thousand escapes of wit
Make thee the father of their idle dreams
And rack thee in their fancies.
Welcome, how agreed?
ISABELLAShe'll take the enterprise upon her, father,
Act 4 Sc 1 Ln 70If you advise it.
DUKE VINCENTIOIt is not my consent,
But my entreaty too.
ISABELLALittle have you to say
When you depart from him, but, soft and low,
Act 4 Sc 1 Ln 75'Remember now my brother.'
MARIANAFear me not.
DUKE VINCENTIONor, gentle daughter, fear you not at all.
He is your husband on a pre-contract:
To bring you thus together, 'tis no sin,
Act 4 Sc 1 Ln 80Sith that the justice of your title to him
Doth flourish the deceit. Come, let us go:
Our corn's to reap, for yet our tithe's to sow.

ACT IV

SCENE II. A room in the prison.

ProvostCome hither, sirrah. Can you cut off a man's head?
POMPEYIf the man be a bachelor, sir, I can; but if he be a
married man, he's his wife's head, and I can never
cut off a woman's head.
ProvostAct 4 Sc 2 Ln 5Come, sir, leave me your snatches, and yield me a
direct answer. To-morrow morning are to die Claudio
and Barnardine. Here is in our prison a common
executioner, who in his office lacks a helper: if
you will take it on you to assist him, it shall
Act 4 Sc 2 Ln 10redeem you from your gyves; if not, you shall have
your full time of imprisonment and your deliverance
with an unpitied whipping, for you have been a
notorious bawd.
POMPEYSir, I have been an unlawful bawd time out of mind;
Act 4 Sc 2 Ln 15but yet I will be content to be a lawful hangman. I
would be glad to receive some instruction from my
fellow partner.
ProvostWhat, ho! Abhorson! Where's Abhorson, there?
ABHORSONDo you call, sir?
ProvostAct 4 Sc 2 Ln 20Sirrah, here's a fellow will help you to-morrow in
your execution. If you think it meet, compound with
him by the year, and let him abide here with you; if
not, use him for the present and dismiss him. He
cannot plead his estimation with you; he hath been a bawd.
ABHORSONAct 4 Sc 2 Ln 25A bawd, sir? fie upon him! he will discredit our mystery.
ProvostGo to, sir; you weigh equally; a feather will turn
the scale.
POMPEYPray, sir, by your good favour, — for surely, sir, a
good favour you have, but that you have a hanging
Act 4 Sc 2 Ln 30look, — do you call, sir, your occupation a mystery?
ABHORSONAy, sir; a mystery
POMPEYPainting, sir, I have heard say, is a mystery; and
your whores, sir, being members of my occupation,
using painting, do prove my occupation a mystery:
Act 4 Sc 2 Ln 35but what mystery there should be in hanging, if I
should be hanged, I cannot imagine.
ABHORSONSir, it is a mystery.
POMPEYProof?
ABHORSONEvery true man's apparel fits your thief: if it be
Act 4 Sc 2 Ln 40too little for your thief, your true man thinks it
big enough; if it be too big for your thief, your
thief thinks it little enough: so every true man's
apparel fits your thief.
ProvostAre you agreed?
POMPEYAct 4 Sc 2 Ln 45Sir, I will serve him; for I do find your hangman is
a more penitent trade than your bawd; he doth
oftener ask forgiveness.
ProvostYou, sirrah, provide your block and your axe
to-morrow four o'clock.
ABHORSONAct 4 Sc 2 Ln 50Come on, bawd; I will instruct thee in my trade; follow.
POMPEYI do desire to learn, sir: and I hope, if you have
occasion to use me for your own turn, you shall find
me yare; for truly, sir, for your kindness I owe you
a good turn.
ProvostAct 4 Sc 2 Ln 55Call hither Barnardine and Claudio:
The one has my pity; not a jot the other,
Being a murderer, though he were my brother.
Look, here's the warrant, Claudio, for thy death:
'Tis now dead midnight, and by eight to-morrow
Act 4 Sc 2 Ln 60Thou must be made immortal. Where's Barnardine?
CLAUDIOAs fast lock'd up in sleep as guiltless labour
When it lies starkly in the traveller's bones:
He will not wake.
ProvostWho can do good on him?
Act 4 Sc 2 Ln 65Well, go, prepare yourself.
But, hark, what noise?
Heaven give your spirits comfort!
By and by.
I hope it is some pardon or reprieve
Act 4 Sc 2 Ln 70For the most gentle Claudio.
Welcome father.
DUKE VINCENTIOThe best and wholesomest spirts of the night
Envelope you, good Provost! Who call'd here of late?
ProvostNone, since the curfew rung.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 4 Sc 2 Ln 75Not Isabel?
ProvostNo.
DUKE VINCENTIOThey will, then, ere't be long.
ProvostWhat comfort is for Claudio?
DUKE VINCENTIOThere's some in hope.
ProvostAct 4 Sc 2 Ln 80It is a bitter deputy.
DUKE VINCENTIONot so, not so; his life is parallel'd
Even with the stroke and line of his great justice:
He doth with holy abstinence subdue
That in himself which he spurs on his power
Act 4 Sc 2 Ln 85To qualify in others: were he meal'd with that
Which he corrects, then were he tyrannous;
But this being so, he's just.
Now are they come.
This is a gentle provost: seldom when
Act 4 Sc 2 Ln 90The steeled gaoler is the friend of men.
How now! what noise? That spirit's possessed with haste
That wounds the unsisting postern with these strokes.
ProvostThere he must stay until the officer
Arise to let him in: he is call'd up.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 4 Sc 2 Ln 95Have you no countermand for Claudio yet,
But he must die to-morrow?
ProvostNone, sir, none.
DUKE VINCENTIOAs near the dawning, provost, as it is,
You shall hear more ere morning.
ProvostAct 4 Sc 2 Ln 100Happily
You something know; yet I believe there comes
No countermand; no such example have we:
Besides, upon the very siege of justice
Lord Angelo hath to the public ear
Act 4 Sc 2 Ln 105Profess'd the contrary.
This is his lordship's man.
DUKE VINCENTIOAnd here comes Claudio's pardon.
Messenger(STAGEDIR "Giving a paper")
My lord hath sent you this note; and by me this
Act 4 Sc 2 Ln 110further charge, that you swerve not from the
smallest article of it, neither in time, matter, or
other circumstance. Good morrow; for, as I take it,
it is almost day.
ProvostI shall obey him.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 4 Sc 2 Ln 115 This is his pardon, purchased by such sin
For which the pardoner himself is in.
Hence hath offence his quick celerity,
When it is born in high authority:
When vice makes mercy, mercy's so extended,
Act 4 Sc 2 Ln 120That for the fault's love is the offender friended.
Now, sir, what news?
ProvostI told you. Lord Angelo, belike thinking me remiss
in mine office, awakens me with this unwonted
putting-on; methinks strangely, for he hath not used it before.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 4 Sc 2 Ln 125Pray you, let's hear.
Provost(STAGEDIR "Reads")
'Whatsoever you may hear to the contrary, let
Claudio be executed by four of the clock; and in the
afternoon Barnardine: for my better satisfaction,
Act 4 Sc 2 Ln 130let me have Claudio's head sent me by five. Let
this be duly performed; with a thought that more
depends on it than we must yet deliver. Thus fail
not to do your office, as you will answer it at your peril.'
What say you to this, sir?
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 4 Sc 2 Ln 135What is that Barnardine who is to be executed in the
afternoon?
ProvostA Bohemian born, but here nursed un and bred; one
that is a prisoner nine years old.
DUKE VINCENTIOHow came it that the absent duke had not either
Act 4 Sc 2 Ln 140delivered him to his liberty or executed him? I
have heard it was ever his manner to do so.
ProvostHis friends still wrought reprieves for him: and,
indeed, his fact, till now in the government of Lord
Angelo, came not to an undoubtful proof.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 4 Sc 2 Ln 145It is now apparent?
ProvostMost manifest, and not denied by himself.
DUKE VINCENTIOHath he born himself penitently in prison? how
seems he to be touched?
ProvostA man that apprehends death no more dreadfully but
Act 4 Sc 2 Ln 150as a drunken sleep; careless, reckless, and fearless
of what's past, present, or to come; insensible of
mortality, and desperately mortal.
DUKE VINCENTIOHe wants advice.
ProvostHe will hear none: he hath evermore had the liberty
Act 4 Sc 2 Ln 155of the prison; give him leave to escape hence, he
would not: drunk many times a day, if not many days
entirely drunk. We have very oft awaked him, as if
to carry him to execution, and showed him a seeming
warrant for it: it hath not moved him at all.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 4 Sc 2 Ln 160More of him anon. There is written in your brow,
provost, honesty and constancy: if I read it not
truly, my ancient skill beguiles me; but, in the
boldness of my cunning, I will lay myself in hazard.
Claudio, whom here you have warrant to execute, is
Act 4 Sc 2 Ln 165no greater forfeit to the law than Angelo who hath
sentenced him. To make you understand this in a
manifested effect, I crave but four days' respite;
for the which you are to do me both a present and a
dangerous courtesy.
ProvostAct 4 Sc 2 Ln 170Pray, sir, in what?
DUKE VINCENTIOIn the delaying death.
ProvostA lack, how may I do it, having the hour limited,
and an express command, under penalty, to deliver
his head in the view of Angelo? I may make my case
Act 4 Sc 2 Ln 175as Claudio's, to cross this in the smallest.
DUKE VINCENTIOBy the vow of mine order I warrant you, if my
instructions may be your guide. Let this Barnardine
be this morning executed, and his head born to Angelo.
ProvostAngelo hath seen them both, and will discover the favour.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 4 Sc 2 Ln 180O, death's a great disguiser; and you may add to it.
Shave the head, and tie the beard; and say it was
the desire of the penitent to be so bared before his
death: you know the course is common. If any thing
fall to you upon this, more than thanks and good
Act 4 Sc 2 Ln 185fortune, by the saint whom I profess, I will plead
against it with my life.
ProvostPardon me, good father; it is against my oath.
DUKE VINCENTIOWere you sworn to the duke, or to the deputy?
ProvostTo him, and to his substitutes.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 4 Sc 2 Ln 190You will think you have made no offence, if the duke
avouch the justice of your dealing?
ProvostBut what likelihood is in that?
DUKE VINCENTIONot a resemblance, but a certainty. Yet since I see
you fearful, that neither my coat, integrity, nor
Act 4 Sc 2 Ln 195persuasion can with ease attempt you, I will go
further than I meant, to pluck all fears out of you.
Look you, sir, here is the hand and seal of the
duke: you know the character, I doubt not; and the
signet is not strange to you.
ProvostAct 4 Sc 2 Ln 200I know them both.
DUKE VINCENTIOThe contents of this is the return of the duke: you
shall anon over-read it at your pleasure; where you
shall find, within these two days he will be here.
This is a thing that Angelo knows not; for he this
Act 4 Sc 2 Ln 205very day receives letters of strange tenor;
perchance of the duke's death; perchance entering
into some monastery; but, by chance, nothing of what
is writ. Look, the unfolding star calls up the
shepherd. Put not yourself into amazement how these
Act 4 Sc 2 Ln 210things should be: all difficulties are but easy
when they are known. Call your executioner, and off
with Barnardine's head: I will give him a present
shrift and advise him for a better place. Yet you
are amazed; but this shall absolutely resolve you.
Act 4 Sc 2 Ln 215Come away; it is almost clear dawn.

ACT IV

SCENE III. Another room in the same.

POMPEYI am as well acquainted here as I was in our house
of profession: one would think it were Mistress
Overdone's own house, for here be many of her old
customers. First, here's young Master Rash; he's in
Act 4 Sc 3 Ln 5for a commodity of brown paper and old ginger,
ninescore and seventeen pounds; of which he made
five marks, ready money: marry, then ginger was not
much in request, for the old women were all dead.
Then is there here one Master Caper, at the suit of
Act 4 Sc 3 Ln 10Master Three-pile the mercer, for some four suits of
peach-coloured satin, which now peaches him a
beggar. Then have we here young Dizy, and young
Master Deep-vow, and Master Copperspur, and Master
Starve-lackey the rapier and dagger man, and young
Act 4 Sc 3 Ln 15Drop-heir that killed lusty Pudding, and Master
Forthlight the tilter, and brave Master Shooty the
great traveller, and wild Half-can that stabbed
Pots, and, I think, forty more; all great doers in
our trade, and are now 'for the Lord's sake.'
ABHORSONAct 4 Sc 3 Ln 20Sirrah, bring Barnardine hither.
POMPEYMaster Barnardine! you must rise and be hanged.
Master Barnardine!
ABHORSONWhat, ho, Barnardine!
BARNARDINE A pox o' your throats! Who makes that
Act 4 Sc 3 Ln 25noise there? What are you?
POMPEYYour friends, sir; the hangman. You must be so
good, sir, to rise and be put to death.
BARNARDINE Away, you rogue, away! I am sleepy.
ABHORSONTell him he must awake, and that quickly too.
POMPEYAct 4 Sc 3 Ln 30Pray, Master Barnardine, awake till you are
executed, and sleep afterwards.
ABHORSONGo in to him, and fetch him out.
POMPEYHe is coming, sir, he is coming; I hear his straw rustle.
ABHORSONIs the axe upon the block, sirrah?
POMPEYAct 4 Sc 3 Ln 35Very ready, sir.
BARNARDINEHow now, Abhorson? what's the news with you?
ABHORSONTruly, sir, I would desire you to clap into your
prayers; for, look you, the warrant's come.
BARNARDINEYou rogue, I have been drinking all night; I am not
Act 4 Sc 3 Ln 40fitted for 't.
POMPEYO, the better, sir; for he that drinks all night,
and is hanged betimes in the morning, may sleep the
sounder all the next day.
ABHORSONLook you, sir; here comes your ghostly father: do
Act 4 Sc 3 Ln 45we jest now, think you?
DUKE VINCENTIOSir, induced by my charity, and hearing how hastily
you are to depart, I am come to advise you, comfort
you and pray with you.
BARNARDINEFriar, not I I have been drinking hard all night,
Act 4 Sc 3 Ln 50and I will have more time to prepare me, or they
shall beat out my brains with billets: I will not
consent to die this day, that's certain.
DUKE VINCENTIOO, sir, you must: and therefore I beseech you
Look forward on the journey you shall go.
BARNARDINEAct 4 Sc 3 Ln 55I swear I will not die to-day for any man's
persuasion.
DUKE VINCENTIOBut hear you.
BARNARDINENot a word: if you have any thing to say to me,
come to my ward; for thence will not I to-day.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 4 Sc 3 Ln 60Unfit to live or die: O gravel heart!
After him, fellows; bring him to the block.
ProvostNow, sir, how do you find the prisoner?
DUKE VINCENTIOA creature unprepared, unmeet for death;
And to transport him in the mind he is
Act 4 Sc 3 Ln 65Were damnable.
ProvostHere in the prison, father,
There died this morning of a cruel fever
One Ragozine, a most notorious pirate,
A man of Claudio's years; his beard and head
Act 4 Sc 3 Ln 70Just of his colour. What if we do omit
This reprobate till he were well inclined;
And satisfy the deputy with the visage
Of Ragozine, more like to Claudio?
DUKE VINCENTIOO, 'tis an accident that heaven provides!
Act 4 Sc 3 Ln 75Dispatch it presently; the hour draws on
Prefix'd by Angelo: see this be done,
And sent according to command; whiles I
Persuade this rude wretch willingly to die.
ProvostThis shall be done, good father, presently.
Act 4 Sc 3 Ln 80But Barnardine must die this afternoon:
And how shall we continue Claudio,
To save me from the danger that might come
If he were known alive?
DUKE VINCENTIOLet this be done.
Act 4 Sc 3 Ln 85Put them in secret holds, both Barnardine and Claudio:
Ere twice the sun hath made his journal greeting
To the under generation, you shall find
Your safety manifested.
ProvostI am your free dependant.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 4 Sc 3 Ln 90Quick, dispatch, and send the head to Angelo.
Now will I write letters to Angelo, —
The provost, he shall bear them, whose contents
Shall witness to him I am near at home,
And that, by great injunctions, I am bound
Act 4 Sc 3 Ln 95To enter publicly: him I'll desire
To meet me at the consecrated fount
A league below the city; and from thence,
By cold gradation and well-balanced form,
We shall proceed with Angelo.
ProvostAct 4 Sc 3 Ln 100Here is the head; I'll carry it myself.
DUKE VINCENTIOConvenient is it. Make a swift return;
For I would commune with you of such things
That want no ear but yours.
ProvostI'll make all speed.
ISABELLAAct 4 Sc 3 Ln 105 Peace, ho, be here!
DUKE VINCENTIOThe tongue of Isabel. She's come to know
If yet her brother's pardon be come hither:
But I will keep her ignorant of her good,
To make her heavenly comforts of despair,
Act 4 Sc 3 Ln 110When it is least expected.
ISABELLAHo, by your leave!
DUKE VINCENTIOGood morning to you, fair and gracious daughter.
ISABELLAThe better, given me by so holy a man.
Hath yet the deputy sent my brother's pardon?
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 4 Sc 3 Ln 115He hath released him, Isabel, from the world:
His head is off and sent to Angelo.
ISABELLANay, but it is not so.
DUKE VINCENTIOIt is no other: show your wisdom, daughter,
In your close patience.
ISABELLAAct 4 Sc 3 Ln 120O, I will to him and pluck out his eyes!
DUKE VINCENTIOYou shall not be admitted to his sight.
ISABELLAUnhappy Claudio! wretched Isabel!
Injurious world! most damned Angelo!
DUKE VINCENTIOThis nor hurts him nor profits you a jot;
Act 4 Sc 3 Ln 125Forbear it therefore; give your cause to heaven.
Mark what I say, which you shall find
By every syllable a faithful verity:
The duke comes home to-morrow; nay, dry your eyes;
One of our convent, and his confessor,
Act 4 Sc 3 Ln 130Gives me this instance: already he hath carried
Notice to Escalus and Angelo,
Who do prepare to meet him at the gates,
There to give up their power. If you can, pace your wisdom
In that good path that I would wish it go,
Act 4 Sc 3 Ln 135And you shall have your bosom on this wretch,
Grace of the duke, revenges to your heart,
And general honour.
ISABELLAI am directed by you.
DUKE VINCENTIOThis letter, then, to Friar Peter give;
Act 4 Sc 3 Ln 140'Tis that he sent me of the duke's return:
Say, by this token, I desire his company
At Mariana's house to-night. Her cause and yours
I'll perfect him withal, and he shall bring you
Before the duke, and to the head of Angelo
Act 4 Sc 3 Ln 145Accuse him home and home. For my poor self,
I am combined by a sacred vow
And shall be absent. Wend you with this letter:
Command these fretting waters from your eyes
With a light heart; trust not my holy order,
Act 4 Sc 3 Ln 150If I pervert your course. Who's here?
LUCIOGood even. Friar, where's the provost?
DUKE VINCENTIONot within, sir.
LUCIOO pretty Isabella, I am pale at mine heart to see
thine eyes so red: thou must be patient. I am fain
Act 4 Sc 3 Ln 155to dine and sup with water and bran; I dare not for
my head fill my belly; one fruitful meal would set
me to 't. But they say the duke will be here
to-morrow. By my troth, Isabel, I loved thy brother:
if the old fantastical duke of dark corners had been
Act 4 Sc 3 Ln 160at home, he had lived.
DUKE VINCENTIOSir, the duke is marvellous little beholding to your
reports; but the best is, he lives not in them.
LUCIOFriar, thou knowest not the duke so well as I do:
he's a better woodman than thou takest him for.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 4 Sc 3 Ln 165Well, you'll answer this one day. Fare ye well.
LUCIONay, tarry; I'll go along with thee
I can tell thee pretty tales of the duke.
DUKE VINCENTIOYou have told me too many of him already, sir, if
they be true; if not true, none were enough.
LUCIOAct 4 Sc 3 Ln 170I was once before him for getting a wench with child.
DUKE VINCENTIODid you such a thing?
LUCIOYes, marry, did I but I was fain to forswear it;
they would else have married me to the rotten medlar.
DUKE VINCENTIOSir, your company is fairer than honest. Rest you well.
LUCIOAct 4 Sc 3 Ln 175By my troth, I'll go with thee to the lane's end:
if bawdy talk offend you, we'll have very little of
it. Nay, friar, I am a kind of burr; I shall stick.

ACT IV

SCENE IV. A room in ANGELO's house.

ESCALUSEvery letter he hath writ hath disvouched other.
ANGELOIn most uneven and distracted manner. His actions
show much like to madness: pray heaven his wisdom be
not tainted! And why meet him at the gates, and
Act 4 Sc 4 Ln 5redeliver our authorities there
ESCALUSI guess not.
ANGELOAnd why should we proclaim it in an hour before his
entering, that if any crave redress of injustice,
they should exhibit their petitions in the street?
ESCALUSAct 4 Sc 4 Ln 10He shows his reason for that: to have a dispatch of
complaints, and to deliver us from devices
hereafter, which shall then have no power to stand
against us.
ANGELOWell, I beseech you, let it be proclaimed betimes
Act 4 Sc 4 Ln 15i' the morn; I'll call you at your house: give
notice to such men of sort and suit as are to meet
him.
ESCALUSI shall, sir. Fare you well.
ANGELOGood night.
Act 4 Sc 4 Ln 20This deed unshapes me quite, makes me unpregnant
And dull to all proceedings. A deflower'd maid!
And by an eminent body that enforced
The law against it! But that her tender shame
Will not proclaim against her maiden loss,
Act 4 Sc 4 Ln 25How might she tongue me! Yet reason dares her no;
For my authority bears of a credent bulk,
That no particular scandal once can touch
But it confounds the breather. He should have lived,
Save that riotous youth, with dangerous sense,
Act 4 Sc 4 Ln 30Might in the times to come have ta'en revenge,
By so receiving a dishonour'd life
With ransom of such shame. Would yet he had lived!
A lack, when once our grace we have forgot,
Nothing goes right: we would, and we would not.

ACT IV

SCENE V. Fields without the town.

DUKE VINCENTIOThese letters at fit time deliver me
The provost knows our purpose and our plot.
The matter being afoot, keep your instruction,
And hold you ever to our special drift;
Act 4 Sc 5 Ln 5Though sometimes you do blench from this to that,
As cause doth minister. Go call at Flavius' house,
And tell him where I stay: give the like notice
To Valentinus, Rowland, and to Crassus,
And bid them bring the trumpets to the gate;
Act 4 Sc 5 Ln 10But send me Flavius first.
FRIAR PETERIt shall be speeded well.
DUKE VINCENTIOI thank thee, Varrius; thou hast made good haste:
Come, we will walk. There's other of our friends
Will greet us here anon, my gentle Varrius.

ACT IV

SCENE VI. Street near the city gate.

ISABELLATo speak so indirectly I am loath:
I would say the truth; but to accuse him so,
That is your part: yet I am advised to do it;
He says, to veil full purpose.
MARIANAAct 4 Sc 6 Ln 5Be ruled by him.
ISABELLABesides, he tells me that, if peradventure
He speak against me on the adverse side,
I should not think it strange; for 'tis a physic
That's bitter to sweet end.
MARIANAAct 4 Sc 6 Ln 10I would Friar Peter —
ISABELLAO, peace! the friar is come.
FRIAR PETERCome, I have found you out a stand most fit,
Where you may have such vantage on the duke,
He shall not pass you. Twice have the trumpets sounded;
Act 4 Sc 6 Ln 15The generous and gravest citizens
Have hent the gates, and very near upon
The duke is entering: therefore, hence, away!

ACT V

SCENE I. The city gate.

DUKE VINCENTIOMy very worthy cousin, fairly met!
Our old and faithful friend, we are glad to see you.
ANGELOHappy return be to your royal grace!
DUKE VINCENTIOMany and hearty thankings to you both.
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 5We have made inquiry of you; and we hear
Such goodness of your justice, that our soul
Cannot but yield you forth to public thanks,
Forerunning more requital.
ANGELOYou make my bonds still greater.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 5 Sc 1 Ln 10O, your desert speaks loud; and I should wrong it,
To lock it in the wards of covert bosom,
When it deserves, with characters of brass,
A forted residence 'gainst the tooth of time
And razure of oblivion. Give me your hand,
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 15And let the subject see, to make them know
That outward courtesies would fain proclaim
Favours that keep within. Come, Escalus,
You must walk by us on our other hand;
And good supporters are you.
FRIAR PETERAct 5 Sc 1 Ln 20Now is your time: speak loud and kneel before him.
ISABELLAJustice, O royal duke! Vail your regard
Upon a wrong'd, I would fain have said, a maid!
O worthy prince, dishonour not your eye
By throwing it on any other object
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 25Till you have heard me in my true complaint
And given me justice, justice, justice, justice!
DUKE VINCENTIORelate your wrongs; in what? by whom? be brief.
Here is Lord Angelo shall give you justice:
Reveal yourself to him.
ISABELLAAct 5 Sc 1 Ln 30O worthy duke,
You bid me seek redemption of the devil:
Hear me yourself; for that which I must speak
Must either punish me, not being believed,
Or wring redress from you. Hear me, O hear me, here!
ANGELOAct 5 Sc 1 Ln 35My lord, her wits, I fear me, are not firm:
She hath been a suitor to me for her brother
Cut off by course of justice, —
ISABELLABy course of justice!
ANGELOAnd she will speak most bitterly and strange.
ISABELLAAct 5 Sc 1 Ln 40Most strange, but yet most truly, will I speak:
That Angelo's forsworn; is it not strange?
That Angelo's a murderer; is 't not strange?
That Angelo is an adulterous thief,
An hypocrite, a virgin-violator;
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 45Is it not strange and strange?
DUKE VINCENTIONay, it is ten times strange.
ISABELLAIt is not truer he is Angelo
Than this is all as true as it is strange:
Nay, it is ten times true; for truth is truth
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 50To the end of reckoning.
DUKE VINCENTIOAway with her! Poor soul,
She speaks this in the infirmity of sense.
ISABELLAO prince, I conjure thee, as thou believest
There is another comfort than this world,
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 55That thou neglect me not, with that opinion
That I am touch'd with madness! Make not impossible
That which but seems unlike: 'tis not impossible
But one, the wicked'st caitiff on the ground,
May seem as shy, as grave, as just, as absolute
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 60As Angelo; even so may Angelo,
In all his dressings, characts, titles, forms,
Be an arch-villain; believe it, royal prince:
If he be less, he's nothing; but he's more,
Had I more name for badness.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 5 Sc 1 Ln 65By mine honesty,
If she be mad, — as I believe no other, —
Her madness hath the oddest frame of sense,
Such a dependency of thing on thing,
As e'er I heard in madness.
ISABELLAAct 5 Sc 1 Ln 70O gracious duke,
Harp not on that, nor do not banish reason
For inequality; but let your reason serve
To make the truth appear where it seems hid,
And hide the false seems true.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 5 Sc 1 Ln 75Many that are not mad
Have, sure, more lack of reason. What would you say?
ISABELLAI am the sister of one Claudio,
Condemn'd upon the act of fornication
To lose his head; condemn'd by Angelo:
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 80I, in probation of a sisterhood,
Was sent to by my brother; one Lucio
As then the messenger, —
LUCIOThat's I, an't like your grace:
I came to her from Claudio, and desired her
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 85To try her gracious fortune with Lord Angelo
For her poor brother's pardon.
ISABELLAThat's he indeed.
DUKE VINCENTIOYou were not bid to speak.
LUCIONo, my good lord;
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 90Nor wish'd to hold my peace.
DUKE VINCENTIOI wish you now, then;
Pray you, take note of it: and when you have
A business for yourself, pray heaven you then
Be perfect.
LUCIOAct 5 Sc 1 Ln 95I warrant your honour.
DUKE VINCENTIOThe warrants for yourself; take heed to't.
ISABELLAThis gentleman told somewhat of my tale, —
LUCIORight.
DUKE VINCENTIOIt may be right; but you are i' the wrong
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 100To speak before your time. Proceed.
ISABELLAI went
To this pernicious caitiff deputy, —
DUKE VINCENTIOThat's somewhat madly spoken.
ISABELLAPardon it;
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 105The phrase is to the matter.
DUKE VINCENTIOMended again. The matter; proceed.
ISABELLAIn brief, to set the needless process by,
How I persuaded, how I pray'd, and kneel'd,
How he refell'd me, and how I replied, —
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 110For this was of much length, — the vile conclusion
I now begin with grief and shame to utter:
He would not, but by gift of my chaste body
To his concupiscible intemperate lust,
Release my brother; and, after much debatement,
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 115My sisterly remorse confutes mine honour,
And I did yield to him: but the next morn betimes,
His purpose surfeiting, he sends a warrant
For my poor brother's head.
DUKE VINCENTIOThis is most likely!
ISABELLAAct 5 Sc 1 Ln 120O, that it were as like as it is true!
DUKE VINCENTIOBy heaven, fond wretch, thou knowist not what thou speak'st,
Or else thou art suborn'd against his honour
In hateful practise. First, his integrity
Stands without blemish. Next, it imports no reason
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 125That with such vehemency he should pursue
Faults proper to himself: if he had so offended,
He would have weigh'd thy brother by himself
And not have cut him off. Some one hath set you on:
Confess the truth, and say by whose advice
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 130Thou camest here to complain.
ISABELLAAnd is this all?
Then, O you blessed ministers above,
Keep me in patience, and with ripen'd time
Unfold the evil which is here wrapt up
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 135In countenance! Heaven shield your grace from woe,
As I, thus wrong'd, hence unbelieved go!
DUKE VINCENTIOI know you'ld fain be gone. An officer!
To prison with her! Shall we thus permit
A blasting and a scandalous breath to fall
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 140On him so near us? This needs must be a practise.
Who knew of Your intent and coming hither?
ISABELLAOne that I would were here, Friar Lodowick.
DUKE VINCENTIOA ghostly father, belike. Who knows that Lodowick?
LUCIOMy lord, I know him; 'tis a meddling friar;
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 145I do not like the man: had he been lay, my lord
For certain words he spake against your grace
In your retirement, I had swinged him soundly.
DUKE VINCENTIOWords against me? this is a good friar, belike!
And to set on this wretched woman here
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 150Against our substitute! Let this friar be found.
LUCIOBut yesternight, my lord, she and that friar,
I saw them at the prison: a saucy friar,
A very scurvy fellow.
FRIAR PETERBlessed be your royal grace!
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 155I have stood by, my lord, and I have heard
Your royal ear abused. First, hath this woman
Most wrongfully accused your substitute,
Who is as free from touch or soil with her
As she from one ungot.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 5 Sc 1 Ln 160We did believe no less.
Know you that Friar Lodowick that she speaks of?
FRIAR PETERI know him for a man divine and holy;
Not scurvy, nor a temporary meddler,
As he's reported by this gentleman;
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 165And, on my trust, a man that never yet
Did, as he vouches, misreport your grace.
LUCIOMy lord, most villanously; believe it.
FRIAR PETERWell, he in time may come to clear himself;
But at this instant he is sick my lord,
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 170Of a strange fever. Upon his mere request,
Being come to knowledge that there was complaint
Intended 'gainst Lord Angelo, came I hither,
To speak, as from his mouth, what he doth know
Is true and false; and what he with his oath
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 175And all probation will make up full clear,
Whensoever he's convented. First, for this woman.
To justify this worthy nobleman,
So vulgarly and personally accused,
Her shall you hear disproved to her eyes,
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 180Till she herself confess it.
DUKE VINCENTIOGood friar, let's hear it.
Do you not smile at this, Lord Angelo?
O heaven, the vanity of wretched fools!
Give us some seats. Come, cousin Angelo;
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 185In this I'll be impartial; be you judge
Of your own cause. Is this the witness, friar?
First, let her show her face, and after speak.
MARIANAPardon, my lord; I will not show my face
Until my husband bid me.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 5 Sc 1 Ln 190What, are you married?
MARIANANo, my lord.
DUKE VINCENTIOAre you a maid?
MARIANANo, my lord.
DUKE VINCENTIOA widow, then?
MARIANAAct 5 Sc 1 Ln 195Neither, my lord.
DUKE VINCENTIOWhy, you are nothing then: neither maid, widow, nor wife?
LUCIOMy lord, she may be a punk; for many of them are
neither maid, widow, nor wife.
DUKE VINCENTIOSilence that fellow: I would he had some cause
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 200To prattle for himself.
LUCIOWell, my lord.
MARIANAMy lord; I do confess I ne'er was married;
And I confess besides I am no maid:
I have known my husband; yet my husband
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 205Knows not that ever he knew me.
LUCIOHe was drunk then, my lord: it can be no better.
DUKE VINCENTIOFor the benefit of silence, would thou wert so too!
LUCIOWell, my lord.
DUKE VINCENTIOThis is no witness for Lord Angelo.
MARIANAAct 5 Sc 1 Ln 210Now I come to't my lord
She that accuses him of fornication,
In self-same manner doth accuse my husband,
And charges him my lord, with such a time
When I'll depose I had him in mine arms
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 215With all the effect of love.
ANGELOCharges she more than me?
MARIANANot that I know.
DUKE VINCENTIONo? you say your husband.
MARIANAWhy, just, my lord, and that is Angelo,
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 220Who thinks he knows that he ne'er knew my body,
But knows he thinks that he knows Isabel's.
ANGELOThis is a strange abuse. Let's see thy face.
MARIANAMy husband bids me; now I will unmask.
This is that face, thou cruel Angelo,
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 225Which once thou sworest was worth the looking on;
This is the hand which, with a vow'd contract,
Was fast belock'd in thine; this is the body
That took away the match from Isabel,
And did supply thee at thy garden-house
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 230In her imagined person.
DUKE VINCENTIOKnow you this woman?
LUCIOCarnally, she says.
DUKE VINCENTIOSirrah, no more!
LUCIOEnough, my lord.
ANGELOAct 5 Sc 1 Ln 235My lord, I must confess I know this woman:
And five years since there was some speech of marriage
Betwixt myself and her; which was broke off,
Partly for that her promised proportions
Came short of composition, but in chief
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 240For that her reputation was disvalued
In levity: since which time of five years
I never spake with her, saw her, nor heard from her,
Upon my faith and honour.
MARIANANoble prince,
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 245As there comes light from heaven and words from breath,
As there is sense in truth and truth in virtue,
I am affianced this man's wife as strongly
As words could make up vows: and, my good lord,
But Tuesday night last gone in's garden-house
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 250He knew me as a wife. As this is true,
Let me in safety raise me from my knees
Or else for ever be confixed here,
A marble monument!
ANGELOI did but smile till now:
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 255Now, good my lord, give me the scope of justice
My patience here is touch'd. I do perceive
These poor informal women are no more
But instruments of some more mightier member
That sets them on: let me have way, my lord,
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 260To find this practise out.
DUKE VINCENTIOAy, with my heart
And punish them to your height of pleasure.
Thou foolish friar, and thou pernicious woman,
Compact with her that's gone, think'st thou thy oaths,
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 265Though they would swear down each particular saint,
Were testimonies against his worth and credit
That's seal'd in approbation? You, Lord Escalus,
Sit with my cousin; lend him your kind pains
To find out this abuse, whence 'tis derived.
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 270There is another friar that set them on;
Let him be sent for.
FRIAR PETERWould he were here, my lord! for he indeed
Hath set the women on to this complaint:
Your provost knows the place where he abides
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 275And he may fetch him.
DUKE VINCENTIOGo do it instantly.
And you, my noble and well-warranted cousin,
Whom it concerns to hear this matter forth,
Do with your injuries as seems you best,
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 280In any chastisement: I for a while will leave you;
But stir not you till you have well determined
Upon these slanderers.
ESCALUSMy lord, we'll do it throughly.
Signior Lucio, did not you say you knew that
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 285Friar Lodowick to be a dishonest person?
LUCIO'Cucullus non facit monachum:' honest in nothing
but in his clothes; and one that hath spoke most
villanous speeches of the duke.
ESCALUSWe shall entreat you to abide here till he come and
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 290enforce them against him: we shall find this friar a
notable fellow.
LUCIOAs any in Vienna, on my word.
ESCALUSCall that same Isabel here once again; I would speak with her.
Pray you, my lord, give me leave to question; you
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 295shall see how I'll handle her.
LUCIONot better than he, by her own report.
ESCALUSSay you?
LUCIOMarry, sir, I think, if you handled her privately,
she would sooner confess: perchance, publicly,
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 300she'll be ashamed.
ESCALUSI will go darkly to work with her.
LUCIOThat's the way; for women are light at midnight.
ESCALUSCome on, mistress: here's a gentlewoman denies all
that you have said.
LUCIOAct 5 Sc 1 Ln 305My lord, here comes the rascal I spoke of; here with
the provost.
ESCALUSIn very good time: speak not you to him till we
call upon you.
LUCIOMum.
ESCALUSAct 5 Sc 1 Ln 310Come, sir: did you set these women on to slander
Lord Angelo? they have confessed you did.
DUKE VINCENTIO'Tis false.
ESCALUSHow! know you where you are?
DUKE VINCENTIORespect to your great place! and let the devil
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 315Be sometime honour'd for his burning throne!
Where is the duke? 'tis he should hear me speak.
ESCALUSThe duke's in us; and we will hear you speak:
Look you speak justly.
DUKE VINCENTIOBoldly, at least. But, O, poor souls,
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 320Come you to seek the lamb here of the fox?
Good night to your redress! Is the duke gone?
Then is your cause gone too. The duke's unjust,
Thus to retort your manifest appeal,
And put your trial in the villain's mouth
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 325Which here you come to accuse.
LUCIOThis is the rascal; this is he I spoke of.
ESCALUSWhy, thou unreverend and unhallow'd friar,
Is't not enough thou hast suborn'd these women
To accuse this worthy man, but, in foul mouth
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 330And in the witness of his proper ear,
To call him villain? and then to glance from him
To the duke himself, to tax him with injustice?
Take him hence; to the rack with him! We'll touse you
Joint by joint, but we will know his purpose.
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 335What 'unjust'!
DUKE VINCENTIOBe not so hot; the duke
Dare no more stretch this finger of mine than he
Dare rack his own: his subject am I not,
Nor here provincial. My business in this state
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 340Made me a looker on here in Vienna,
Where I have seen corruption boil and bubble
Till it o'er-run the stew; laws for all faults,
But faults so countenanced, that the strong statutes
Stand like the forfeits in a barber's shop,
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 345As much in mock as mark.
ESCALUSSlander to the state! Away with him to prison!
ANGELOWhat can you vouch against him, Signior Lucio?
Is this the man that you did tell us of?
LUCIO'Tis he, my lord. Come hither, goodman baldpate:
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 350do you know me?
DUKE VINCENTIOI remember you, sir, by the sound of your voice: I
met you at the prison, in the absence of the duke.
LUCIOO, did you so? And do you remember what you said of the duke?
DUKE VINCENTIOMost notedly, sir.
LUCIOAct 5 Sc 1 Ln 355Do you so, sir? And was the duke a fleshmonger, a
fool, and a coward, as you then reported him to be?
DUKE VINCENTIOYou must, sir, change persons with me, ere you make
that my report: you, indeed, spoke so of him; and
much more, much worse.
LUCIOAct 5 Sc 1 Ln 360O thou damnable fellow! Did not I pluck thee by the
nose for thy speeches?
DUKE VINCENTIOI protest I love the duke as I love myself.
ANGELOHark, how the villain would close now, after his
treasonable abuses!
ESCALUSAct 5 Sc 1 Ln 365Such a fellow is not to be talked withal. Away with
him to prison! Where is the provost? Away with him
to prison! lay bolts enough upon him: let him
speak no more. Away with those giglots too, and
with the other confederate companion!
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 5 Sc 1 Ln 370 Stay, sir; stay awhile.
ANGELOWhat, resists he? Help him, Lucio.
LUCIOCome, sir; come, sir; come, sir; foh, sir! Why, you
bald-pated, lying rascal, you must be hooded, must
you? Show your knave's visage, with a pox to you!
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 375show your sheep-biting face, and be hanged an hour!
Will't not off?
DUKE VINCENTIOThou art the first knave that e'er madest a duke.
First, provost, let me bail these gentle three.
Sneak not away, sir; for the friar and you
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 380Must have a word anon. Lay hold on him.
LUCIOThis may prove worse than hanging.
DUKE VINCENTIO What you have spoke I pardon: sit you down:
We'll borrow place of him.
Sir, by your leave.
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 385Hast thou or word, or wit, or impudence,
That yet can do thee office? If thou hast,
Rely upon it till my tale be heard,
And hold no longer out.
ANGELOO my dread lord,
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 390I should be guiltier than my guiltiness,
To think I can be undiscernible,
When I perceive your grace, like power divine,
Hath look'd upon my passes. Then, good prince,
No longer session hold upon my shame,
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 395But let my trial be mine own confession:
Immediate sentence then and sequent death
Is all the grace I beg.
DUKE VINCENTIOCome hither, Mariana.
Say, wast thou e'er contracted to this woman?
ANGELOAct 5 Sc 1 Ln 400I was, my lord.
DUKE VINCENTIOGo take her hence, and marry her instantly.
Do you the office, friar; which consummate,
Return him here again. Go with him, provost.
ESCALUSMy lord, I am more amazed at his dishonour
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 405Than at the strangeness of it.
DUKE VINCENTIOCome hither, Isabel.
Your friar is now your prince: as I was then
Advertising and holy to your business,
Not changing heart with habit, I am still
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 410Attorney'd at your service.
ISABELLAO, give me pardon,
That I, your vassal, have employ'd and pain'd
Your unknown sovereignty!
DUKE VINCENTIOYou are pardon'd, Isabel:
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 415And now, dear maid, be you as free to us.
Your brother's death, I know, sits at your heart;
And you may marvel why I obscured myself,
Labouring to save his life, and would not rather
Make rash remonstrance of my hidden power
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 420Than let him so be lost. O most kind maid,
It was the swift celerity of his death,
Which I did think with slower foot came on,
That brain'd my purpose. But, peace be with him!
That life is better life, past fearing death,
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 425Than that which lives to fear: make it your comfort,
So happy is your brother.
ISABELLAI do, my lord.
DUKE VINCENTIOFor this new-married man approaching here,
Whose salt imagination yet hath wrong'd
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 430Your well defended honour, you must pardon
For Mariana's sake: but as he adjudged your brother, —
Being criminal, in double violation
Of sacred chastity and of promise-breach
Thereon dependent, for your brother's life, —
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 435The very mercy of the law cries out
Most audible, even from his proper tongue,
'An Angelo for Claudio, death for death!'
Haste still pays haste, and leisure answers leisure;
Like doth quit like, and MEASURE still FOR MEASURE.
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 440Then, Angelo, thy fault's thus manifested;
Which, though thou wouldst deny, denies thee vantage.
We do condemn thee to the very block
Where Claudio stoop'd to death, and with like haste.
Away with him!
MARIANAAct 5 Sc 1 Ln 445O my most gracious lord,
I hope you will not mock me with a husband.
DUKE VINCENTIOIt is your husband mock'd you with a husband.
Consenting to the safeguard of your honour,
I thought your marriage fit; else imputation,
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 450For that he knew you, might reproach your life
And choke your good to come; for his possessions,
Although by confiscation they are ours,
We do instate and widow you withal,
To buy you a better husband.
MARIANAAct 5 Sc 1 Ln 455O my dear lord,
I crave no other, nor no better man.
DUKE VINCENTIONever crave him; we are definitive.
MARIANAGentle my liege, —
DUKE VINCENTIOYou do but lose your labour.
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 460Away with him to death!
Now, sir, to you.
MARIANAO my good lord! Sweet Isabel, take my part;
Lend me your knees, and all my life to come
I'll lend you all my life to do you service.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 5 Sc 1 Ln 465Against all sense you do importune her:
Should she kneel down in mercy of this fact,
Her brother's ghost his paved bed would break,
And take her hence in horror.
MARIANAIsabel,
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 470Sweet Isabel, do yet but kneel by me;
Hold up your hands, say nothing; I'll speak all.
They say, best men are moulded out of faults;
And, for the most, become much more the better
For being a little bad: so may my husband.
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 475O Isabel, will you not lend a knee?
DUKE VINCENTIOHe dies for Claudio's death.
ISABELLAMost bounteous sir,
Look, if it please you, on this man condemn'd,
As if my brother lived: I partly think
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 480A due sincerity govern'd his deeds,
Till he did look on me: since it is so,
Let him not die. My brother had but justice,
In that he did the thing for which he died:
For Angelo,
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 485His act did not o'ertake his bad intent,
And must be buried but as an intent
That perish'd by the way: thoughts are no subjects;
Intents but merely thoughts.
MARIANAMerely, my lord.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 5 Sc 1 Ln 490Your suit's unprofitable; stand up, I say.
I have bethought me of another fault.
Provost, how came it Claudio was beheaded
At an unusual hour?
ProvostIt was commanded so.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 5 Sc 1 Ln 495Had you a special warrant for the deed?
ProvostNo, my good lord; it was by private message.
DUKE VINCENTIOFor which I do discharge you of your office:
Give up your keys.
ProvostPardon me, noble lord:
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 500I thought it was a fault, but knew it not;
Yet did repent me, after more advice;
For testimony whereof, one in the prison,
That should by private order else have died,
I have reserved alive.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 5 Sc 1 Ln 505What's he?
ProvostHis name is Barnardine.
DUKE VINCENTIOI would thou hadst done so by Claudio.
Go fetch him hither; let me look upon him.
ESCALUSI am sorry, one so learned and so wise
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 510As you, Lord Angelo, have still appear'd,
Should slip so grossly, both in the heat of blood.
And lack of temper'd judgment afterward.
ANGELOI am sorry that such sorrow I procure:
And so deep sticks it in my penitent heart
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 515That I crave death more willingly than mercy;
'Tis my deserving, and I do entreat it.
DUKE VINCENTIOWhich is that Barnardine?
ProvostThis, my lord.
DUKE VINCENTIOThere was a friar told me of this man.
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 520Sirrah, thou art said to have a stubborn soul.
That apprehends no further than this world,
And squarest thy life according. Thou'rt condemn'd:
But, for those earthly faults, I quit them all;
And pray thee take this mercy to provide
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 525For better times to come. Friar, advise him;
I leave him to your hand. What muffled fellow's that?
ProvostThis is another prisoner that I saved.
Who should have died when Claudio lost his head;
As like almost to Claudio as himself.
DUKE VINCENTIOAct 5 Sc 1 Ln 530 If he be like your brother, for his sake
Is he pardon'd; and, for your lovely sake,
Give me your hand and say you will be mine.
He is my brother too: but fitter time for that.
By this Lord Angelo perceives he's safe;
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 535Methinks I see a quickening in his eye.
Well, Angelo, your evil quits you well:
Look that you love your wife; her worth worth yours.
I find an apt remission in myself;
And yet here's one in place I cannot pardon.
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 540You, sirrah, that knew me for a fool, a coward,
One all of luxury, an ass, a madman;
Wherein have I so deserved of you,
That you extol me thus?
LUCIO'Faith, my lord. I spoke it but according to the
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 545trick. If you will hang me for it, you may; but I
had rather it would please you I might be whipt.
DUKE VINCENTIOWhipt first, sir, and hanged after.
Proclaim it, provost, round about the city.
Is any woman wrong'd by this lewd fellow,
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 550As I have heard him swear himself there's one
Whom he begot with child, let her appear,
And he shall marry her: the nuptial finish'd,
Let him be whipt and hang'd.
LUCIOI beseech your highness, do not marry me to a whore.
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 555Your highness said even now, I made you a duke:
good my lord, do not recompense me in making me a cuckold.
DUKE VINCENTIOUpon mine honour, thou shalt marry her.
Thy slanders I forgive; and therewithal
Remit thy other forfeits. Take him to prison;
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 560And see our pleasure herein executed.
LUCIOMarrying a punk, my lord, is pressing to death,
whipping, and hanging.
DUKE VINCENTIOSlandering a prince deserves it.
She, Claudio, that you wrong'd, look you restore.
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 565Joy to you, Mariana! Love her, Angelo:
I have confess'd her and I know her virtue.
Thanks, good friend Escalus, for thy much goodness:
There's more behind that is more gratulate.
Thanks, provost, for thy care and secrecy:
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 570We shill employ thee in a worthier place.
Forgive him, Angelo, that brought you home
The head of Ragozine for Claudio's:
The offence pardons itself. Dear Isabel,
I have a motion much imports your good;
Act 5 Sc 1 Ln 575Whereto if you'll a willing ear incline,
What's mine is yours and what is yours is mine.
So, bring us to our palace; where we'll show
What's yet behind, that's meet you all should know.