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Ber. All's one to him. What a past-saving slave is this!
1 Lord. You are deceived, my lord; this is monsieur Parolles, the gallant militarist, (that was his own phrase,) that had the whole theorick of war in the knot of his scarf, and the practice in the chape of his dagger.
2 Lord. I will never trust a man again, for keeping his sword clean; nor believe he can have every thing in him, by wearing his apparel neatly.
1 Sold. Well, that's set down.
Par. Five or six thousand horse, I said, I will say true, or thereabouts, set down,-for I'll speak
1 Lord. He's very near the truth in this.
Ber. But I con him no thanks for't, in the nature he delivers it.
Par. Poor rogues, I pray you, say.
1 Sold. Well, that's set down.
Par. I humbly thank you, sir: a truth's a truth, the rogues are marvellous poor.
1 Sold. Demand of him, of what strength they are a-foot. What say you to that?
Par. By my troth, sir, if I were to live this present hour, I will tell true. Let me see: Spurio a hundred and fifty, Sebastian so many, Corambus so many, Jaques so many; Guiltian, Cosmo, Lodowick, and Gratii, two hundred fifty each: mine own company, Chitopher, Vaumond, Bentii, two hundred and fifty cach: so that the muster-file, rotten and sound, upon my life, amounts not to fifteen thousand poll; half of the which dare not
shake the snow from off their cassocks, lest they shake themselves to pieces.
Ber. What shall be done to him?
1 Lord. Nothing, but let him have thanks. Demand of him my conditions, and what credit I have with the duke.
1 Sold. Well, that's set down. You shall demand of him, whether one Captain Dumain be i'the camp, a Frenchman; what his reputation is with the duke, what his valour, honesty, and expertness in wars; or whether he thinks, it were not possible, with well-weighing sums of gold, to corrupt him to a revolt. What say you to this? what do you know of it?
Par. I beseech you, let me answer to the particular of the intergatories: Demand them singly. Sold. Do you know this captain Dumain?
Par. I know him: he was a botcher's 'prentice in Paris, from whence he was whipp'd for getting the sheriff's fool with child; a dumb innocent, that could not say him, nay.
[Dumain lifts up his hand in anger. Ber. Nay, by your leave, hold your hands; though I know, his brains are forfeit to the next tile that falls.
1 Sold. Well, is this captain in the duke of Florence's camp?
Par. Upon my knowledge, he is, and lousy.
1 Lord. Nay, look not so upon me; we shall hear your lordship anon.
1 Sold. What is his reputation with the duke? Par. The duke knows him for no other but a poor officer of mine; and writ to me this other day,
to turn him out o'the band: I think, I have his letter in my pocket.
1 Sold. Marry, we'll search.
Par. In good sadness, I do not know; either it is there, or it is upon a file, with the duke's other letters, in my tent.
1 Sold. Here 'tis; here's a paper; Shall I read it to you?
Par. I do not know, if it be it, or no.
Ber. Our interpreter does it well.
1 Lord. Excellently.
1 Sold. Dian, The Count's a fool, and full of gold,Par. That is not the duke's letter, sir; that is an advertisement to a proper maid in Florence, one Diana, to take heed of the allurement of one count Rousillon, a foolish idle boy, but, for all that, very ruttish: I pray you, sir, put it up again.
1 Sold. Nay, I'll read it first, by your favour.
Par. My meaning in't, I protest, was very honest in the behalf of the maid: for I knew the young Count to be a dangerous and lascivious boy; who is a whale to virginity, and devours up all the fry it finds.
Ber. Damnable, both sides rogue!
1 Sold. When he swears oaths, bid him drop gold, and take it;
After he scores, he never pays the score:
Half won, is match well made: match, and well make it ;
For count of this, the Count's a fool, I know it
Ber. He shall be whipp'd through the army, with this rhyme in his forehead.
2 Lord. This is your devoted friend, sir, the manifold linguist, and the armipotent soldier.
Ber. I could endure any thing before but a cat, and now he's a cat to me.
1 Sold. I perceive, sir, by the general's looks, we shall be fain to hang you.
Par. My life, sir, in any case: not that I am afraid to die; but that, my offences being many, I would repent out the remainder of nature: let me live, sir, in a dungeon, i'the stocks, or any where, so I may live.
1 Sold. We'll see what may be done, so you confess freely; therefore, once more to this captain Dumain: You have answer'd to his reputation with the duke, and to his valour: What is his honesty? Par. He will steal, sir, an egg out of a cloister;
for rapes and ravishments he parallels Nessus. He professes not keeping of oaths; in breaking them, he is stronger than Hercules. He will lie, sir, with such volubility, that you would think truth were a fool: drunkenness is his best virtue; for he will be swine-drunk; and in his sleep he does little harm, save to his bed-clothes about him; but they know his conditions, and lay him in straw. I have but little more to say, sir, of his honesty: he has every.
thing that an honest man should not have; what an honest man should have, he has nothing.
1 Lord. I begin to love him for this.
Ber. For this description of thine honesty? A pox upon him for me, he is more and more a cat.
1 Sold. What say you to his expertness in war? Par. Faith, sir, he has led the drum before the English tragedians,--to belie him, I will not,—and more of his soldiership I know not; except, in that country, he had the honour to be the officer at a place there call'd Mile-end, to instruct for the doubling of files: I would do the man what honour I can, but of this I am not certain.
1 Lord. He hath out-villain'd villainy so far, that the rarity redeems him.
Ber. A pox on him! he's a cat still.
1 Sold. His qualities being at this poor price, I need not ask you, if gold will corrupt him to revolt.
Par. Sir, for a quart d'ecu he will sell the feesimple of his salvation, the inheritance of it; and cut the entail from all remainders, and a perpetual succession for it perpetually.
1 Sold. What's his brother, the other captain Dumain?
2 Lord. Why does he ask him of me?
1 Sold. What's he?
Par. E'en a crow of the same nest; not altogether so great as the first in goodness, but greater a great deal in evil. He excels his brother for a coward, yet his brother is reputed one of the best that is: In a retreat he out-runs any lackey; marry, in coming on he has the cramp.