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I'll prove mine honour and mine honesty
ABB. And thereof came it that the man was mad. Against thee presently, if thou dar’st stand. The venom clamour of a jealous woman MER. I dare, and do defy thee for a villain. Poisons more deadly than a mad dog's tooth.
[They draw. It seems, his sleeps were hinder'd by thy railing ;
And thereof comes it, that his head is light. Enter ADRIANA, LUCIANA, Courtezan, and others. Thou say'st, his meat was sauc'd with thy up
braidings: Adr. Hold !-hurt him not, for God's sake! Unquiet meals make ill digestions,— -he is mad;
Thereof the raging fire of fever bred ; Some get within him ;* take his sword away ;- And what's a fever but a fit of madness? Bind Dromio too, and bear them to my house. Thou say’st, his sports were hinder'd by thy brawls: Dro. S. Run, master, run ; for God's sake, take Sweet recreation barr’d, what doth ensue, a house ;
But moody and dull melancholy, This is some priory ;-in, or we are spoil’d. Kinsman to grim and comfortless Despair, [Exeunt Ant. S. and Dro. S. to the Priory. | And, at her heels, a huge infectious troop
Of pale distemperatures and foes to life?
In food, in sport, and life-preserving rest,
To be disturb’d, would mad or man, or beast : ABB. Be quiet, people! wherefore throng you The consequence is, then, thy jealous fits hither ?
Have scar'd thy husband from the use of wits. Adr. To fetch my poor distracted husband Luc. She never reprehended him but mildly,
When he demean’d himself rough, rude, and Let us come in that we may bind him fast,
wildly. And bear him home for his recovery.
these rebukes and answer not? Ang. I knew he was not in his perfect wits. ADR. She did betray me to my own reproof. MER. I am sorry now that I did draw on him. Good people, enter and lay hold on him ! ABB. How long hath this possession held the ABB. No, not a creature enters in my house.
ADR. Then let your servants bring my husband Adr. This week he hath been heavy, sour, sad,
forth. And much different from the man he was ;
ABB. Neither; he took this place for sanctuary. But, till this afternoon, his passion
And it shall privilege him from your hands, Ne'er brake into extremity of rage.
Till I have brought him to his wits again, Abb. Hath he not lost much wealth by wreck Or lose my labour in assaying it. of sea ?
Adr. I will attend my husband, be his nurse, Buried some dear friend? IIath not, else, his eye Diet his sickness, for it is my office, Stray'd his affection in unlawful love ?
And will have no attorney but myself ; A sin prevailing much in youthful men,
And therefore let me have him home with me. Who give their eyes the liberty of gazing.
ABB. Be patient; for I will not let him stir, Which of these sorrows is he subject to?
Till I have us’d the approved means I have, ADR. To none of these, except it be the last : With wholesome syrups, drugs, and holy prayers, Namely, some love that drew him oft from home. To make of him a formal" man again : ABB. You should, for that, have reprehended It is a branch and parcel of mine oath,him.
A charitable duty of my order; Adr. Why, so I did.
Therefore depart, and leave him here with me. ABB.
Ay, but not rough enough. Adr. I will not hence and leave my husband
And ill it doth beseem your holiness
To separate the husband and the wife.
ABB. Be quiet and depart, thou shalt not have Adr. It was the copy of our conference.
[Exit Abbess. In bed, he slept not for my urging it ;
Luc. Complain unto the duke of this indignity. At board, he fed not for my urging it :
ADR. Come, go ; I will fall prostrate at his feet, Alone, it was the subject of my
And never rise until my tears and prayers In company, I often glanced it ;
Have won his grace to come in person hither, Still did I tell him it was vile and bad.
And take perforce my husband from the abbess.
a Some get within him ;] Get within his guard; close with him.
b A formal man-) This seems to mean, A reasonable mani, A well regulated man.
MER. By this, I think, the dial points at five: Chas'd us away; till, raising of more aid, Anon, I'm sure, the duke himself in person We came again to bind them : then they fled Comes this way to the melancholy vale,
Into this abbey, whither we pursued them; The place of deatha and sorry" execution,
And here the abbess shuts the gates on us, Behind the ditches of the abbey here.
And will not suffer us to fetch him out, Ang. Upon what cause ?
Nor send him forth, that we may bear him hence. MER. To see a reverend Syracusian merchant, Therefore, most gracious duke, with thy command, Who put unluckily into this bay
Let him be brought forth, and borne hence for help. Against the laws and statutes of this town,
DUKE. Long since, thy husband serv'd me in Beheaded publicly for his offence.
my wars ; Ang. See where they come; we will behold his And I to thee engag'd a prince's word, death.
When thou didst make him master of thy bed, Luc. Kneel to the duke before he pass the To do him all the grace and good I could. abbey.
Go, some of you, knock at the abbey-gate,
I will determine this before I stir.
Enter a Servant.
Senv. O mistress, mistress! shift and save He shall not die, ,—so much we tender him.
yourself! ADR. Justice, most sacred duke, against the My master and his man are both broke loose, abbess !
Beaten the maids a-row,' and bound the doctor, Duke. She is a virtuous and a reverend lady; Whose beard they have singed off with brands of It cannot be that she hath done thee wrong.
fire; Adr. May it please your grace, Antipholus, my And, ever as it blazed, they threw on him husband,
Great pails of puddled mire to quench the hair : Whom I made lord of me and all I had,
My master preaches patience to him, and the while, At your important letters, (1) this ill day
His man, with scissors, nicks himo like a fool ; A most outrageous fit of madness took him ;
send some present help, That desp’rately he hurried through the street, Between them they will kill the conjurer. (With him his bondman, all as mad as he,)
Adr. Peace, fool! thy master and his man are Doing displeasure to the citizens,
here, By rushing in their houses, bearing thence, And that is false thou dost report to us. Rings, jewels,—any thing his rage did like.
Serv. Mistress, upon my life I tell you
true! Once did I get him bound, and sent him home, I have not breath’d, almost, since I did see it. Whilst to take order for the wrongs I went, He cries for you, and vows, if he can take you, That here and there his fury had committed. To scorchf your face, and to disfigure you: Anon, I wot not by what strong escape,
[Cry within. He broke from those that had the guard of him, Hark, hark! I hear him, mistress !-fly!— be And, with his mad attendant and himself, Each one, with ireful passion,—with drawn swords, DUKE. Come, stand by me; fear nothing. Met us again, and, madly bent on us,
Guard with halberts.
a The place of death---] The original has depth instead of death : and, as the Rev. Mr. Hunter thinks, rightly. According to his view, “New Illustrations of Shakespeare," vol. i. p. 225, “. The place of depth.' in the Greek story, the Barathrum, means the dcep pit, into which offenders were cast."
b And sorry execution,-) Meaning dismal, sorrowful execution.
¢ At your important letters,-) That is, in the language of our old writers, your importunate letters. Thus, in “Much Ado about Nothing." Act II. Sc. 1:-"-if the Prince be too important, tell him there is measure in everything," &c. So in ** King Lear," Act IV. Sc. 4:
" Therefore great France
My mourning and important tears hath pitied." d Beaten the maids a-row,--] A-row is explained by the commentators, one after another, successirely. " A thousand time a-row he gan hire kisse."
CHAUCER, Wife of Bathes Tale, v. 6386, Tyrwhitt's Ed.
“ The curtal Friar in Fountain Abbey
Well can a strong bow draw;
Old Ballads, Evans, vol.ii...!"
f To scorch your face,--) So the old copy. The same spelling occurs in the folio, 1623, Act III. Sc.2, of "Macbeth:"
" We have scorch'd the snake, not killed it; " where, however, the word meant is probably scotch'd.
ADR. Ah me, it is my husband ! Witness you, That he is borne about invisible : Even now we hous’d him in the abbey here, And now he's there, past thought of human
Enter ANTIPHOLUS and DROMIO of Ephesus. Ant. E. Justice, most gracious duke! Oh,
grant me justice ! Even for the service that long since I did thee, When I bestrid thee in the wars, and took Deep scars to save thy life; even for the blood That then I lost for thee, now grant me justice. Æge. Unless the fear of death doth make me
dote, I see my son Antipholus, and Dromio.
Ant. E. Justice, sweet prince ! against that
woman there. She whom thou gav'st to me to be my wife ;That hath abused and dishonour'd me, Even in the strength and height of injury ! Beyond imagination is the wrong, That she this day hath shameless thrown on me. DUKE. Discover how, and thou shalt find me
just. Ant. E. This day, great duke, she shut the
doors upon me, While she with harlots a feasted in my house. DUKE. A grievous fault. Say, woman, didst
thou so ? ADR. No, my good lord; myself, he, and my
sister, To-day did dine together: so befal-my soul As this is false, he burdens me withal !
a While she with harlots-] Antipholus does not mean courtecans, but base companions, villains. So in the " Winter's Tale," Act II. Sc. 3:
--for the harlot king Is quite beyond mine arm."
Luc. Ne'er may I look on day, nor sleep on Heard you confess you had the chain of him, , night,
first forswore it on the mart: But she tells to your highness simple truth ! And thereupon I drew my sword on you ; Ang. O perjur'd woman! they are both for- And then you fled into this abbey here,
From whence, I think, you are come by miracle. In this the madman justly chargeth them.
Ant. E. I never came within these abbey walls, Ant. E. My liege, I am advised what I say; Nor ever didst thou draw thy sword on me ; Neither disturbed with the effect of wine,
I never saw the chain, so help me Heaven ! Nor, heady-rash, provok'd with raging ire, And this is false you burden me withal. Albeit my wrongs might make one wiser mad. DUKE. Why, what an intricate impeach is this ! This woman lock'd me out this day from dinner:- I think you all have drunk of Circe's cup. That goldsmith there, were he not pack’d with her, If here you hous’d him, here he would have been. Could witness it, for he was with me then ; If he were mad, he would not plead so coldly. Who parted with me to go fetch a chain,
You say he dined at home; the goldsmith here Promising to bring it to the Porcupine,
Den that saying. Sirrah, what say you ? Where Balthazar and I did dine together.
Dro. E. Sir, he dined with her there, at the Our dinner done, and he not coming thither,
Porcupine. I went to seek him; in the street I met him,
Cour. He did ; and from my finger snatch'd And, in his company, that gentleman. There did this perjur'd goldsmith swear me down, Ant. E. 'Tis true, my liege, this ring I had That I this day of him receiv'd the chain,
of her. Which, God he knows, I saw not; for the which, DUKE. Saw'st thou him enter at the abbey He did arrest me with an officer.
here? I did obey, and sent my peasant home
Cour. As sure, my liege, as I do see your For certain ducats : he with none return’d.
grace. Then fairly I bespoke the officer
DUKE. Why, this is strange. Go, call the To go in person with me to my house.
abbess hither. By the way we met
I think you are all mated or stark mad. My wife, her sister, and a rabble more
[Exit an Attendant. Of vile confederates; along with them,
ÆGE. Most mighty duke, vouchsafe me speak They brought one Pinch, a hungry lean-fac'd
a word: villain,
Haply I see a friend will save my life,
deliver me. A thread-bare juggler, and a fortune-teller ;
DUKE. Speak freely, Syracusian, what thou wilt. A needy, hollow-ey'd, sharp-looking wretch,- ÆGE. Is not your name, sir, callid Antipholus ? A living dead man: this pernicious slave,
And is not that your bondman, Dromio? Forsooth, took on him as a conjurer,
Dro. E. Within this hour I was his bondman, And, gazing in mine eyes, feeling my pulse,
sir, * And with no face, as 't were, out-facing me, But he, I thank him, gnaw'd in two my cords. Cries out I was possess’d: then, all together, Now am I Dromio, and his man, unbound. They fell upon me, bound me, bore me thence, ÆGE. I am sure you both of you remember me. And, in a dark and dankish vault at home,
Dro. E. Ourselves we do remember, sir, by you; There left me and my man both bound together ; For lately we were bound as you are now. Till, gnawing with my teeth my bonds in sunder, You are not Pinch’s patient, -are you, sir ? I gain'd my freedom, and immediately
ÆGE. Why look you strange on me? You Ran hither to your grace, whom I beseech
know me well. To give me ample satisfaction
Ant. E. I never saw you in my life, till now. For these deep shames and great indignities. ÆGE. Oh! grief hath chang'd me since you Ang. My lord, in truth, thus far I witness
saw me last; with him,
And careful hours, with Time's deformed hand, That he dined not at home, but was lock'd out. Have written strange defeatures in my face.
Duke. But had he such a chain of thee or no? But tell me yet, dost thou not know my voice ?
Ang. He had, my lord; and when he ran in here Ant. E. Neither. These people saw the chain about his neck.
Dromio, nor thou ? MER. Besides, I will be sworn these ears of Dro. E. No, trust me, sir, nor I. mine
I am sure thou dost.
& And careful hours,-) Painful, anxious hours.
b Strange defeatures in my face.] See Note (a), p. 121.
Have I been patron to Antipholus,
Enter the Abbess, with ANTIPHOLUS of Syracuse,
and Dromio of Syracuse.
ABB. Most mighty duke, behold a man much
wrong'd. [All gather to see them. Adr. I see two husbands, or mine eyes de
Dro. E. Ay, sir, but I am sure I do not; and whatsoever a man denies, you are now bound a to believe him. Æge. Not know
voice ? Oh, Time's extremity! Hast thou so crack'd and splitted my poor tongue, In seven short years, that here my only son Knows not my feeble key of untun'd cares ? Though now this grained face of mine be hid In sap-consuming winter's drizzled snow, And all the conduits of my blood froze up; Yet hath my night of life some memoryMy wasting lamps some fading glimmer leftMy dull deaf ears a little use to hear : All these old witnesses (I cannot err) Tell me, thou art my son, Antipholus.
Ant. E. I never saw my father in my life.
ÆGE. But seven years since, in Syracusa, boy, Thou know'st we parted; but, perhaps, my son, Thou sham’st to acknowledge me in misery. ANT. E. The duke, and all that know me in
the city, Can witness with me that it is not so; I ne'er saw Syracusa in my
life. DUKE. I tell thee, Syracusian, twenty years
DUKE. One of these men is Genius to the other; And so of these, which is the natural man, And which the spirit? Who deciphers them ? Dro. S. I, sir, am Dromio ; command him
away. DRO. E. I, sir, am Dromio, pray
let me stay Ant. S. Ægeon, art thou not ? or else his
ghost ! Dro. S. Oh, my old master! who hath bound
him here? ABB. Whoever bound him, I will loose his bonds, And gain a husband by his liberty ! Speak, old Ægeon, if thou be'st the man That hadst a wife once callid Æmilia, That bore thee at a burden two fair sons ! Oh, if thou be’st the same Ægeon, speak !
a You are now bound, &c.] Of course, a quibble on poor Ægeon's bonds.