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D. Pedro. He is in earnest.

Claud. In most profound earnest; and, I'll warrant you, for the love of Beatrice.

D. Pedro. And hath challenged thee?
Claud. Most sincerely.

D. Pedro. What a pretty thing man is, when
he goes in his doublet and hose, and leaves off his
Enter DOGBERRY, VERGES, and the Watch, with

CONRADE and BORACHIO. Claud. He is then a giant to an ape; but then is an ape a doctor to such a man.

D. Pedro. But, soft you, let be; pluck up my heart, and be sad ! 9 Did he not say, my brother was fled?

Dogb. Come, you, sir; if justice cannot tame you, she shall ne'er weigh more reasons in her balance:

: nay, an you be a cursing hypocrite once, you must be looked to.

D. Pedro. How now, two of my brother's men bound ! Borachio, one!

Claud. Hearken after their offence, my lord !

D. Pedro. Officers, what offence have these men done?

Dogb. Marry, sir, they have committed false report; moreover, they have spoken untruths; secondarily, they are slanders; sixth and lastly, they have belied a lady; thirdly, they have verified unjust things : and, to conclude, they are lying knaves.

D. Pedro. First, I ask thee what they have done; thirdly, I ask thee what's their offence; sixth and lastly, why they are committed; and, to conclude, what you lay to their charge?

9 Serious.


's your offence?

Claud. Rightly reasoned, and in his own division; and, by my troth, there's one meaning well suited.

D. Pedro. Whom have you offended, masters, that you are thus bound to your answer? this learned constable is too cunning to be understood : What's

Bora. Sweet prince, let me go no further to mine answer: do you hear me, and let this count kill me. I have deceived even your very eyes : what your wisdoms could not discover, these shallow fools have brought to light; who, in the night, over-heard me confessing to this man, how Don John, your brother, incensed 1 me to slander the lady Hero; how you were brought into the orchard, and saw me court Margaret in Hero's garments; how you disgraced her, when you should marry her : my villainy they have upon record; which I had rather seal with my death, than repeat over to my shame: the lady is dead upon mine and my master's false accusation; and, briefly, I desire nothing but the reward of a villain.

D. Pedro. Runs not this speech like iron through Claud. I have drunk poison, whiles he utter'd it.

D. Pedro. But did my brother set thee on to this?

Bora. Yea, and paid me richly for the practice of it. D. Pedro. He is compos'd and fram'd of trea

chery : And fled he is upon this villainy.

Claud. Sweet Hero ! now thy image doth appear In the rare semblance that I loved it first

your blood ?

i Incited.


Dogb. Come, bring away the plaintiffs ; by this time our Sexton hath reformed signior Leonato of the matter : And masters, do not forget to specify, when time and place shall serve, that I am an ass.

Verg. Here, here comes master signior Leonato,
and the Sexton too.
Re-enter LEONATO and Antonio, with the Sexton.
Leon. Which is the villain? Let me see his

That when I note another man like him,
may avoid him: Which of these is he?
Bora. If you would know your wronger look on
Leon. Art thou the slave, that with thy breath

hast kill'd Mine innocent child ? Bora,

Yea, even I alone.
Leon. No, not so, villain; thou bely'st thyself;
Here stand a pair of honourable men,
A third is filed, that had a hand in it:
I thank you, princes, for my daughter's death ;
Record it with your high and worthy deeds ;
'Twas bravely done, if you bethink you of it.

Claud. I know not how to pray your patience,
Yet I must speak : Choose your revenge yourself;
Impose 2 me to what penance your invention
Can lay upon my sin: yet sinn'd I not,
But in mistaking
D. Pedro.

By my soul, nor I ;
And yet, to satisfy this good old man,
I would bend under any heavy weight
That he'll enjoin me to.

Leon. I cannot bid you bid my daughter live,
That were impossible ; but, I pray you both,


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Possess the people in Messina here
How innocent she died : and, if your love
Can labour aught in sad invention,
Hang her an epitaph upon her tomb,
And sing it to her bones; sing it to-night:-
To-morrow morning come you to my house;
And since you could not be my son-in-law,
Be yet my nephew: my brother hath a daughter,
Almost the copy of my child that's dead,
And she alone is heir to both of us;
Give her the right you should have given her

And so dies my revenge.

O, noble sir,
Your over-kindness doth wring tears from me!
I do embrace your offer; and dispose
For henceforth of poor Claudio.
Leon. To-morrow then I will expect your com-

To-night I take my leave. — This naughty man
Shall face to face be brought to Margaret,
Who, I believe, was pack'd 4 in all this wrong,
Hir'd to it by your brother.

No, by my soul, she was not ;
Nor knew not what she did, when she spoke to me;
But always hath been just and virtuous,
In any thing that I do know by her.

Dogb. Moreover, sir, (which, indeed, is not under white and black,) this plaintiff here, the offender, did call me ass: I beseech you, let it be remembered in his punishment: And also, the watch heard them talk of one Deformed: they say, he wears a key in his ear, and a lock hanging by it; and borrows money in God's name; the


3 Acquaint.

4 Combined.

which he hath used so long, and never paid, that now men grow hard-hearted, and will lend nothing for God's sake: Pray you, examine him upon that point.

Leon. I thank thee for thy care and honest pains.

Dogb. Your worship speaks like a most thankful and reverend youth ; and I praise God for you. Leon. There's for thy pains. Dogb. God save the foundation !

Leon. Go, I discharge thee of thy prisoner, and I thank thee.

Dogb. I leave an arrant knave with your worship; which, I beseech your worship to correct yourself, for the example of others. God keep your worship; I wish your worship well; God restore you to health : I humbly give you leave to depart; and if a merry meeting may be wished, God prohibit it. - Come,

neighbour. [Exeunt DOGBERRY, VERGES, and Watch. Leon. Until to-morrow morning, lords, farewell. Ant. Farewell, my lords; we look for you to

morrow. D. Pedro. We will not fail. Claud.

To-night I'll mourn with Hero.

[Exeunt Don Pedro and Claudio. Leon. Bring you these fellows on; we'll talk with

Margaret, How her acquaintance grew wit this le 15 fel low.


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5. Ignorant.

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