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Being now awake, I'll queen it no inch further,

But milk my ewes, and weep.


Speak, ere thou diest.

Why, how now, father?

Nor dare to know that which I know.-O, sir,

I cannot speak, nor think,


You have undone a man of fourscore three 1,
That thought to fill his grave in quiet; yea,
To die upon the bed my father died,
To lie close by his honest bones: but now
Some hangman must put on my shroud, and lay me
Where no priest shovels-in dust2.-O cursed

wretch !

That knew'st this was the prince, and would'st ad


To mingle faith with him.-Undone! undone !
If I might die within this hour, I have liv'd
To die when I desire 3.




Why look you so upon me?

I am but sorry, not afeard; delay'd,
But nothing alter'd: What I was, I am:

1 You have undone a man of fourscore three, &c.] These sentiments, which the poet has heightened by a strain of ridicule that runs through them, admirably characterize the speaker; whose selfishness is seen in concealing the adventure of Perdita ; and here supported, by showing no regard for his son or her, but, being taken up entirely with himself, though fourscore three. WARBURTON.

2 Where no priest shovels-in dust.] This part of the priest's office might be remembered in Shakspeare time: it was not left off till the reign of Edward VI. FARMER.

That is in pronouncing the words earth to earth, &c.

3 If I might die within this hour, I have liv'd
To die when I desire.] So, in Macbeth:
"Had I but died an hour before this chance,

I had liv'd a blessed time." STEEvens.

4 Why look you SO UPON ME?] should be omitted. STEEVENS,


Perhaps the two last words

Gracious my lord,


More straining on, for plucking back; not following
My leash unwillingly.
You know your father's temper3: at this time
He will allow no speech,-which, I do guess,
You do not purpose to him ;-and as hardly
Will he endure your sight as yet, I fear:
Then, till the fury of his highness settle,
Come not before him.


I think, Camillo.


I not purpose it.

Even he, my lord.

PER. How often have I told you, 'twould be thus? How often said, my dignity would last

But till 'twere known?


It cannot fail, but by

The violation of my faith; And then

Let nature crush the sides o' the earth together, And mar the seeds within!-Lift up thy looks7:From my succession wipe me, father! I

Am heir to my affection.


Be advis'd.

Fro. I am; and by my fancy: if my reason
Will thereto be obedient, I have reason;

If not, my senses, better pleas'd with madness,
Do bid it welcome.

This is desperate, sir.
FLO. So call it but it does fulfil my vow:

5 You know YOUR father's temper:] The old copy reads-my father's. Corrected by the editor of the second folio. MALONE. 6 And mar the seeds within!] So, in Macbeth:


"And nature's germins tumble all together." STEEVENS. -LIFT UP thy looks :] "Lift up the light of thy countenance." Psalm iv. 6. STEEVENS.



and by my FANCY:] It must be remembered that fancy in our author very often, as in this place, means love. JOHNSON. So, in A Midsummer-Night's Dream :

"Fair Helena in fancy following me."

See vol. v. p. 301, n. 7. STEEVENS,

I needs must think it honesty.


Not for Bohemia, nor the pomp that may
Be thereat glean'd; for all the sun sees, or
The close earth wombs, or the profound seas hide
In unknown fathoms, will I break my oath
To this my fair belov'd: Therefore, I pray you,
As you have ever been my father's honour'd friend,
When he shall miss me, (as, in faith, I mean not
To see him any more,) cast your good counsels
Upon his passion; Let myself and fortune,
Tug for the time to come. This you may know,
And so deliver,-I am put to sea

With her, whom here? I cannot hold on shore;
And, most opportune to our need1, I have
A vessel rides fast by, but not prepar'd

For this design. What course I mean to hold,
Shall nothing benefit your knowledge, nor
Concern me the reporting.


O, my lord,

I would your spirit were easier for advice,
Or stronger for your need.

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-[Takes her aside. [To CAMILLO.

He's irremovable,

I'll hear you by and by.


Resolv'd for flight: Now were I happy, if

His going I could frame to serve my turn;
Save him from danger, do him love and honour;
Purchase the sight again of dear Sicilia,

And that unhappy king, my master, whom
I so much thirst to see.


Now, good Camillo,

9WHOM here] Old copy-who. Corrected by the editor of the second folio. MALONE.

3 1 And, most opportune to our need,] The old copy has-her need. This necessary emendation was made by Mr. Theobald. MALONE.

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Perhaps unnecessary. "Her need," is the need we have of her,' i. e. the vessel. BosWELL.

I am so fraught with curious business, that

I leave out ceremony.


Sir, I think,


You have heard of my poor services, i' the love
That I have borne your father?

Very nobly
Have you deserv'd: it is my father's musick,
To speak your deeds; not little of his care
To have them recompens'd as thought on.


Well, my lord,

If you may please to think I love the king;
And, through him, what is nearest to him, which is
Your gracious self; embrace but my direction,
(If your more ponderous and settled project
May suffer alteration,) on mine honour

I'll point you where you shall have such receiving
As shall become your highness; where you may
Enjoy your mistress; (from the whom, I see,
There's no disjunction to be made, but by,
As heavens forefend! your ruin :) marry her;
And (with my best endeavours, in your absence,)
Your discontenting father strive to qualify,
And bring him up to liking 2.


How, Camillo, May this, almost a miracle, be done?

That I may call thee something more than man, And, after that, trust to thee.


A place, whereto you'll go?

Have you thought on

2 And (with my best endeavours, in your absence,)

Your DISCONTENTING father strive to qualify,

And bring him up to liking.] And where you may, by letters, intreaties, &c. endeavour to soften your incensed father, and reconcile him to the match; to effect which, my best services shall not be wanting during your absence. Mr. Pope, without either authority or necessity, reads-" I'll strive to qualify;"which has been followed by all the subsequent editors.

Discontenting is in our author's language the same as discontented. MALONE.


Not any yet:

But as the unthought-on accident is guilty
To what we wildly do3; so we profess

Ourselves to be the slaves of chance, and flies
Of every wind that blows.

Then list to me :

CAM. This follows,-if you will not change your purpose, But undergo this flight ;-Make for Sicilia;

And there present yourself, and your fair princess,
(For so, I see, she must be,) 'fore Leontes;
She shall be habited, as it becomes

The partner of your bed. Methinks, I see
Leontes, opening his free arms, and weeping
His welcomes forth: asks thee, the son3, forgiveness,
As 'twere i' the father's person: kisses the hands
Of your fresh princess: o'er and o'er divides him
"Twixt his unkindness and his kindness; the one
He chides to hell, and bids the other grow,
Faster than thought, or time.


Worthy Camillo,
What colour for my visitation shall I
Hold up before him?


To what we wildly do ;] Guilty to, though it sounds harsh to our ears, was the phraseology of the time, or at least of Shakspeare; and this is one of those passages that should caution us not to disturb his text merely because the language appears different from that now in use. See The Comedy of Errors, Act III. Sc. II. :

"But lest myself be guilty to self wrong,

"I'll stop mine ears against the mermaid's song,"


The unthought-on accident is the unexpected discovery made by Polixenes. M. MASON..

4 Ourselves to be the slaves of CHANCE,] As chance has driven me to these extremities, so I commit myself to chance, to be conducted through them. JOHNSON.



asks thee, THE son,] The old copy reads-thee there Corrected by the editor of the third folio. MALONE.

Perhaps we should read-(as Mr. Ritson observes)

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Asks there the son forgiveness-," STEEVENS.

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