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Mira.

'Tis far off;

And rather like a dream than an assurance
That my remembrance warrants: Had I not
Four or five women once, that tended me?

Pro. Thou had'st, and more, Miranda: But how is it,

That this lives in thy mind? What seest thou else In the dark backward and abysm 7 of time?

If thou remember'st aught, ere thou cam❜st here, How thou cam❜st here, thou may'st.

Mira.

But that I do not.

Pro. Twelve years since, Miranda, twelve years

since,

Thy father was the duke of Milan, and

A prince of power.

Mira. Sir, are not you my father?

Pro. Thy mother was a piece of virtue, and She said- thou wast my daughter; and thy father Was duke of Milan; and his only heir

A princess; -no worse issued.

Mira.

O, the heavens !

What foul play had we, that we came from thence?

Or blessed was't, we did?

Pro.

Both, both, my girl: By foul play, as thou say'st, were we heav'd thence; But blessedly holp hither.

Mira. O, my heart bleeds To think o'the teens that I have turn'd you to, Which is from my remembrance! Please you, fur

ther.

Pro. My brother, and thy uncle, call'd AntonioI pray thee, mark me,-that a brother should Be so perfidious! he whom, next thyself,

7 Abyss.

8 Sorrow.

Of all the world I lov'd, and to him put
The manage of my state; as, at that time,
Through all the signiories it was the first,

And Prospero the prime duke; being so reputed
In dignity, and, for the liberal arts,

Without a parallel; those being all my study,
The government I cast upon my brother,

And to my state grew stranger, being transported,
And wrapt in secret studies. Thy false uncle→
Dost thou attend me?

Mira.

Sir, most heedfully.
Pro. Being once perfected how to grant suits,
How to deny them; whom to advance, and whom
To trash 9 for over-topping; new_created
The creatures that were mine; I say, or chang'd
them,

Or else new form'd them: having both the key
Of officer and office, set all hearts

To what tune pleas'd his ear; that now he was
The ivy, which had hid my princely trunk,

And suck'd my verdure out on't.-Thou attend'st

not:

I pray thee, mark me.

Mira.

O good sir, I do.

Pro. I thus neglecting worldly ends, all dedicate To closeness, and the bettering of my mind With that, which, but by being so retir'd, O'er-priz'd all popular rate, in my false brother Awak'd an evil nature: and my trust, Like a good parent, did beget of him

A falsehood, in its contrary as great

As my trust was; which had, indeed, no limit,
A confidence sans bound. He being thus lorded,
Not only with what my revenue yielded,

9 Cut away.

! Without.

But what my power might else exact,-like one,
Who having, unto truth, by telling of it,
Made such a sinner of his memory,

To credit his own lie,—he did believe
He was the duke; out of the substitution,
And executing the outward face of royalty,
With all prerogative:- Hence his ambition
Growing,-Dost hear?

Mira.

Your tale, sir, would cure deafness. Pro. To have no screen between this part he play'd

And him he play'd it for, he needs will be
Absolute Milan: Me, poor man!-my library
Was dukedom large enough; of temporal royalties
He thinks me now incapable: confederates
(So dry2 he was for sway) with the king of Naples,
To give him annual tribute, do him homage;
Subject his coronet to his crown, and bend
The dukedom, yet unbow'd, (alas, poor Milan !)
To most ignoble stooping.

Mira.

O the heavens !

Pro. Mark his condition, and the event; then

tell me,

If this might be a brother.

I should sin

Mira.
To think but nobly of my grandmother :
Good wombs have borne bad sons.

Pro.

Now the condition.

This king of Naples, being an enemy

To me inveterate, hearkens my brother's suit; Which was, that he in lieu3 o'the premises,— Of homage, and I know not how much tribute, Should presently extirpate me and mine

Out of the dukedom; and confer fair Milan,

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With all the honours, on my brother: Whereon,
A treacherous army levied, one midnight
Fated to the purpose, did Antonio open

The gates of Milan; and, i̇’the dead of darkness,
The ministers for the purpose hurried thence
Me, and thy crying self.

Mira.

Alack, for pity! I, not rememb❜ring how I cried out then, Will' cry it o'er again; it is a hint,+

That wrings mine eyes.

Pro.

Hear a little further,

And then I'll bring thee to the present business Which now's upon us; without the which, this story Were most impertinent.

Mira.

That hour destroy us?

Pro.

Wherefore did they not

Well demanded, wench;

My tale provokes that question. Dear, they durst

not;

(So dear the love my people bore me) nor set

A mark so bloody on the business; but

With colours fairer painted their foul ends.
In few, they hurried us aboard a bark;

Bore us some leagues to sea; where they prepar'd
A rotten carcase of a boat, not rigg'd,
Nor tackle, sail, nor mast; the very rats
Instinctively had quit it: there they hoist us,
To cry to the sea that roar'd to us; to sigh
To the winds, whose pity, sighing back again,
Did us but loving wrong.

Mira.

Was I then to you!

Alack! what trouble

Pro.

O! a cherubim

4 Suggestion.

Thou wast, that did preserve me! Thou didst

smile,

Infused with a fortitude from heaven,

When I have deck'd5 the sea with drops full salt;
Under my burden groan'd; which rais'd in me
An undergoing stomach, to bear up

Against what should ensue.

Mira.

How came we ashore?

Pro. By Providence divine.
Some food we had, and some fresh water,
A noble Neapolitan, Gonzalo,

that

Out of his charity, (who being then appointed
Master of this design,) did give us; with
Rich garments, linens, stuffs, and necessaries,
Which since have steaded much; so, of his gentle-

ness,

Knowing I lov'd my books, he furnish'd me,
From my own library, with volumes that
I prize above my dukedom.

Mira.

But ever see that man!

Pro.

'Would I might

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Sit still, and hear the last of our sea-sorrow.
Here in this island we arriv'd; and here
Have I, thy school-master, made thee more profit
Than other princes can, that have more time
For vainer hours, and tutors not so careful.
Mira. Heavens thank you for't! And now, I
pray you, sir,

(For still 'tis beating in my mind,) your reason
For raising this sea-storm?

Pro.

Know thus far forth.

By accident most strange, bountiful fortune,

5 Sprinkled.

6 Stubborn resolution.

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