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Rousillon. The inner Court of the Countess's Palace.
Enter Clown and Parolles. Par. Good monsieur Lavatch,4 give my lord Lafeu this letter: I have ere now, sir, been better known to you, when I have held familiarity with fresher clothes; but I am now, sir, muddied in fortune's moat, and smell somewhat strong of her strong displeasure.
Clo. Truly, fortune's displeasure is but sluttish, if it smell so strong as thou speakest of: I will henceforth eat no fish of fortune's buttering. Pr’ythee, allow the wind.
Par. Nay, you need not stop your nose, sir ; I spake but by a metaphor.
Clo. Indeed, sir, if your metaphor stink, I will stop my nose; or against any man's metaphor. Pr’ythee, get thee further.
Par. Pray you, sir, deliver me this paper.
Clo. Foh, prythee, stand away; A paper from fortune's close-stool to give to a nobleman! Look, here he comes himself.
Enter LAFEU. Here is a pur of fortune's, sir, or of fortune's cat, (but not à musk-cat,) that has fallen into the unclean fishpond of her displeasure, and, as he says, is muddied withal: Pray you, sir, use the carp as you may; for he looks like a poor, decayed, inge
4- Lavatch,] This is an undoubted, and perhaps irremediable, corruption of some French word. s u llow the wind.) i. e. stand to the leeward of me.
nious, foolish, rascally knave. I do pity his distress in my smiles of comfort, and leave him to your lordship.,
[Exit Clown. Par. My lord, I am a man whom fortune hath cruelly scratched.
Laf. And what would you have me to do? 'tis too late to pare her nails now. . Wherein have you played the knave with fortune, that she should scratch you, who of herself is a good lady, and would not have knaves thrive long under her? There's a quart d'ecu for you: Let the justices make you and fortune friends; I am for other business.
Par. I beseech your honour, to hear me one single word.
Laf. You beg a single penny more: come, you shall ha't; save your word.
Par. My name, my good lord, is Parolles.
Laf. You beg more than one word then.-Cox' my passion! give me your hand :-How does your drum?
Par. O my good lord, you were the first that found me.
Laf. Was I, in sooth? and I was the first that lost thee.
Par. It lies in you, my lord, to bring me in some grace, for you did bring me out.
Laf. Out upon thee, knave! dost thou put upon me at once both the office of God and the devil? one brings thee in grace, and the other brings thee out. [Trumpets sound.] The king's coming, I know by his trumpets. — Sirrah, inquire further after me; I had talk of you last night: though you are a fool and a knave, you shall eat;' go to, follow. Par. I praise God for you.
sare your word.] i. e. you need not ask;here it is. you shall eat;] Parolles has many of the lineaments of
The same. A Room in the Countess's Palace.
Flourish. Enter King, Countess, Lafeu, Lords,
Gentlemen, Guards, &C..
'Tis past, my liege:
My honour'd lady,
This I must say,
Falstaff, and seems to be the character which Shakspeare delighted to draw, a fellow that had more wit than virtue. Though justice required that he should be detected and exposed, yet his vices sit so fit in him that he is not at last suffered to starve. JOHNSON.
8. -esteem--] Meaning that his esteem was lessened in its value by Bertram's misconduct; since a person who was honoured with it could be so ill treated as Helena had been, and that with
home.] That is, completely, in its full extent.
Of richest eyes;' whose words all ears took captive;
Praising what is lost, Makes the remembrance dear. Well, call him
I shall, my liege.
[Exit Gentleman. King. What says he to your daughter? have you
spoke? Laf. All that he is hath reference to your highness. King. Then shall we have a match. I have letters
sent me, That set him high in fame.
He looks well on't.
Of richest eyes ;] Shakspeare means that her beauty had
women, might be said to be the richest in ideas of beauty.
the first view shall kill All repetition:] The first interview shall put an end to all recollection of the past. Shakspeare is now hastening to the end of the play, finds his matter sufficient to fill up his remaining scenes, and therefore, as on such other occasions, contracts his dialogue and precipitates his action. Decency required that Bertram' double crime of cruelty and disobedience, joined likewise with some. hypocrisy, should raise more resentment; and that though his mother might easily forgive him, his king should more pertinaciously vindicate his own authority and Helen's merit. Of all this Shakspeare could not be ignorant, but Shakrpeare wanted do conclude his play. JOHNSON.
King. I am not a day of season, 3
My high-repented blames,*
. All is whole;
Ber. Admiringly, my liege: at first
late, Like a remorseful pardon slowly carried,
3 I am not a day of season,] That is, of uninterrupted rain: one of those wet days that usually happen about the vernal equinox.
4 My high-repented blames, ] High-repented blames, are faults repented of to the height, to the utmost. VOL. III.