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Hang all the husbands, That cannot do that feat, you'll leave yourself Hardly one subject.

Leon. Once more, take her hence. Paul. A most unworthy and unnatural lord Can do no more.



It is an heretick, that makes the fire,

Not she, which burns in't. I'll not call you tyrant; But this most cruel usage of your queen

I'll have thee burn'd.

I care not:

(Not able to produce more accusation

Than your own weak-hing'd fancy,) something


Of tyranny, and will ignoble make you,
Yea, scandalous to the world.

Leon. On your allegiance, Out of the chamber with her. Were I a tyrant, Where were her life? she durst not call me so, If she did know me one. Away with her.

Paul. I pray you, do not push me; I'll be gone. Look to your babe, my lord; 'tis yours: Jove send


A better guiding spirit!—What need these hands?—
You, that are thus so tender o'er his follies,
Will never do him good, not one of you.
So, so:-Farewel; we are gone.

Leon. Thou, traitor, hast set on thy wife to this.-
My child? away with't!-even thou, that hast
A heart so tender o'er it, take it hence,

And see it instantly consum'd with fire;
Even thou, and none but thou. Take it up straight:

Within this hour bring me word 'tis done,
(And by good testimony,) or I'll seize thy life,
With what thou else call'st thine: If thou refuse,
And wilt encounter with my wrath, say so;
The bastard brains with these my proper hands
Shall I dash out. Go, take it to the fire;
For thou sett'st on thy wife.

I did not, sir:
These lords, my noble fellows, if they please,
Can clear me in't.

1 Lord.
We can; my royal liege,
He is not guilty of her coming hither.
Leon. You are liars all.

1 Lord. 'Beseech your highness, give us better credit:

We have always truly serv'd you; and beseech
So to esteem of us: And on our knees we beg,
(As recompence of our dear services,

Past, and to come,) that you do change this purpose;
Which, being so horrible, so bloody, must
Lead on to some foul issue: We all kneel.

Leon. I am a feather for each wind that blows:Shall I live on, to see this bastard kneel And call me father? Better burn it now, Than curse it then. But, be it; let it live: It shall not neither.-You, sir, come you hither; [To Antigonus. You, that have been so tenderly officious With lady Margery, your midwife, there, To save this bastard's life:-for 'tis a bastard, So sure as this beard's grey,-what will you adventure To save this brat's life?


Any thing, my lord,

That my ability may undergo,
And nobleness impose: at least, thus much;
I'll pawn the little blood which I have left,
To save the innocent: any thing possible.
Leon. It shall be possible: Swear by this sword,
Thou wilt perform my bidding.


I will, my lord. Leon. Mark, and perform it; (seest thou?) for the fail

Of any point in't shall not only be

Death to thyself, but to thy lewd-tongued wife;
Whom, for this time, we pardon. We enjoin thee,
As thou art liegeman to us, that thou carry
This female bastard hence; and that thou bear it
To some remote and desert place, quite out
Of our dominions; and that there thou leave it,
Without more mercy, to its own protection,
And favour of the climate. As by strange fortune
It came to us, I do in justice charge thee,-
On thy soul's peril, and thy body's torture,-
That thou commend it strangely to some place,
Where chance may nurse, or end it: Take it up.

Ant. I swear to do this; though a present death
Had been more merciful.-Come on, poor babe:
Some powerful spirit instruct the kites and ravens,
To be thy nurses! Wolves, and bears, they say,
Casting their savageness aside, have done.
Like offices of pity.-Sir, be prosperous

In more than this deed does require! and blessing, Against this cruelty, fight on thy side,

Poor thing, condemn'd to loss! [Exit, with the child.

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Leon. Another's issue.

No, I'll not rear

1 Atten.

Please your highness, posts,

From those you sent to the oracle, are come
An hour since: Cleomenes and Dion,

Being well arriv'd from Delphos, are both landed,
Hasting to the court.

1 Lord.

Hath been beyond account.

So please you, sir, their speed

Leon. Twenty-three days They have been absent: 'Tis good speed; foretels, The great Apollo suddenly will have The truth of this appear. Prepare you, lords; Summon a session, that we may arraign Our most disloyal lady: for, as she hath Been publickly accus'd, so shall she have A just and open trial. While she lives, My heart will be a burden to me. And think upon my bidding.

Leave me;




Enter Cleomenes and Dion.

Cleo. The climate's delicate; the air most sweet; Fertile the isle; the temple much surpassing The common praise it bears.

Dion. I shall report, For most it caught me, the celestial habits, (Methinks, I so should term them,) and the reve


Of the grave wearers. O, the sacrifice!
How ceremonious, solemn, and unearthly
It was i'the offering!

But, of all, the burst
And the ear-deafening voice o'the oracle,
Kin to Jove's thunder, so surpriz'd my sense,
That I was nothing.

Dion. If the event o'the journey Prove as successful to the queen,-O, be't so!— As it hath been to us, rare, pleasant, speedy, The time is worth the use on't.

Great Apollo,
Turn all to the best! These proclamations,
So forcing faults upon Hermione,

I little like.

Dion. The violent carriage of it Will clear, or end, the business: When the oracle, (Thus by Apollo's great divine seal'd up,)

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