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In these foundations which I build upon,
The center is not big enough to bear
A school-boy's top. Away with her to prifon:
He, who fhall fpeak for her, is far off guilty *,
But that he speaks.

Her. There's fome ill planet reigns ;

I must be patient, 'till the heavens look
With an afpect more favourable. Good my lords,
I am not prone to weeping; as our fex
Commonly are, the want of which vain dew,
Perchance, fhall dry your pities; but I have
That honourable grief lodg'd here, which burns
Worfe than tears drown: 'befeech you all, my lords,
With thoughts fo qualified as your charities
Shall beft inftruct you, meafure me; and fo
The King's will be perform'd!

Leo. Shall I be heard?

Her. Who is't, that goes with me? 'befeech your
Highness,

My women may be with me, for, you fee,

My plight requires it. Do not weep, good fools,

[To her Ladies: There is no caufe; when you fhall know, your mistrefs Has deferv'd prifon, then abound in tears, As I come out; this action, I now go on, Is for my better grace. Adieu, my Lord, I never wish'd to fee you forry; now,

I trust, I fhall. My women, come, you've leave.

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Leo. Go, do our bidding; hence.

[Exit Queen, guarded; and Ladies. Lord. 'Befeech your Hignefs call the Queen again. Ant. Be certain what you do, Sir, left your juftice Prove violence; in the which three Great ones fuffer, Yourfelf, your Queen, your fon.

Lord. For her, my Lord,

I dare my life lay down, and will do't, Sir,
Please you t'accept it, that the Queen is fpotlefs
I'th' eyes of heaven, and to you, I mean,

In this which you accuse her.

Ant. If it prove

I

She's otherwife, I'll keep my stable where

I lodge my wife, I'll go in couples with her;
Than when I feel, and fee, no further trust her:
For every inch of woman in the world,

Ay every dram of woman's flesh is falfe,

If the be.

Leo. Hold your peaces.

Lord. Good my Lord,

Ant. It is for you we speak, not for ourselves: You are abus'd, and by fome putter on,

That will be damn'd for't; 'would I knew the villain, I would land-dam * him: be fhe honour-flaw'd,

I have three daughters; the eldest is eleven;

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The fecond, and the third, nine, and * some five;
If this prove true, they'll pay for't. By mine honour,
I'll geld 'em all: fourteen they shall not fee,
To bring falfe generations: they are co-heirs,
And I had rather glib myself, than they
Should not produce fair iffue.

Leo. Ceafe; no more:

You fmell this business with a sense as cold
As is a dead man's nose; I see't and feel't,
As you feel doing thus; and fee withal
The inftruments that feel.

Ant. If it be so,

We need no grave to bury honefty;

[finking his brows.

There's not a grain of it, the face to sweeten
Of the whole dungy earth.

Leo. What? lack I credit?

Lord. I had rather you did lack than I, my Lord,
Upon this ground; and more it would content me
To have her honour true, than your fufpicion;
Be blam'd for't, how you might.

Leo. Why, what need we

Commune with you of this? but rather follow
Our forceful inftigation? our prerogative.
Calls not your counfels, but our natural goodness
Imparts this; which, if you, or stupified,
Or feeming fo in fkill, cannot, or will not
Relifh a truth like us; inform yourselves,
We need no more of your advice; the matter,
The lofs, the gain, the ord❜ring on't, is all
Properly ours.

Ant. And I wish, my Liege,

You had only in your filent judgment try'd it,
Without more overture.

Leo. How could that be?

Either thou art most ignorant by age,
Or thou wert born a fool. Camillo's flight,

*This is Mr. Theobald's correction; the former editions read, fans five.

Added

Added to their familiarity,

(Which was as grofs as ever touch'd conjecture,
That lack'd fight only; nought for approbation',
But only feeing; all other circumstances
Made up to th' deed) do push on this proceeding;
Yet for a greater confirmation,

For, in an act of this importance, 'twere
Most piteous to be wild, I have difpatch'd in poft,
To facred Delphos, to Apollo's temple,
Cleomines and Dion, whom you know

Of stuff'd fufficiency: Now, from the oracle
They will bring all: whofe fpiritual counsel had, -
Shall ftop, or fpur me. Have I done well?

Lord. Well done, my Lord.

Leo. Tho' I am fatisfy'd, and need no more
Than what I know, yet shall the oracle
Give reft to th' minds of others: fuch as he,
Whofe ignorant credulity will not

Come up to th' truth. So have we thought it good
From our free perfon, she should be confin'd:
Left that the treachery of the two o, fled hence,
Be left her to perform. Come, follow us,
We are to speak in publick; for this bufinefs-
Will raife us all.

Ant. [afide.] To laughter, as I take it,
If the good truth were known.

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[Exeunt.

9 Left that the treachery of the

two, &c.-] He has before declared, that there is a plot againf his life and crown, and that Hermione is federary with Polyxenes and Càmillo.

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SCENE III.

Changes to a Prifon.

Enter Paulina, and Gentlemen.

Paul.

THE

HE keeper of the prifon,

call to him: [Exit Gentleman. Good lady,

Let him have knowledge who I am.
No court in Europe is too good for thee;
What doft thou then in prifon?

Re-enter Gentleman, with the Goaler,

Now, good Sir,

You know me, do you not?

Goal. For a worthy lady,

And one whom much I honour,

Paul. Pray you then,

Conduct me to the Queen,

Goal. I may not, Madam;

To the contrary I have exprefs commandment.
Paul. Here's ado to lock up honesty and honour
From the accefs of gentle vifitors!

Is it lawful, pray you, to fee her women?

Any of them? Emilia?

Goal. So please you, Madam,

To put a-part these your attendants, I

Shall bring Emilia forth.

Paul. I pray you now, call her;

Withdraw yourselves.

Goal. And, Madam, I must be

[Exeunt Gent.

Prefent at your conference.

Paul, Well; be it fo, pr'ythee.

[Exit Goaler.

Here's fuch ado to make no ftain a stain,

As paffes colouring.

Enter Emilia.

Dear gentlewoman,

How

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