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And be as sweet as sharp. We must away; Our waggon is prepar'd, and time revives us : All's well that ends well: still the fine's the


Whate'er the course, the end is the renown.


not fall out with thee. Go thy ways: let my horses be well looked to, without any tricks. 61 Clo. If I put any tricks upon 'em, sir, they shall be jades' tricks, which are their own right by the law of nature. Exit.

Laf. A shrewd knave and an unhappy.
Count. So he is. My lord that's gone made

SCENE V.-Rousillon. A Room in the COUNTESS's himself much sport out of him: by his authority


Enter COUNTESS, LAFEU, and Clown. Laf. No, no, no; your son was misled with a snipt-taffeta fellow there, whose villanous saffron would have made all the unbaked and doughy youth of a nation in his colour: your daughterin-law had been alive at this hour, and your son here at home, more advanced by the king than by that red-tailed humble-bee I speak of.

Count. I would I had not known him; it was the death of the most virtuous gentlewoman that ever nature had praise for creating. If she had partaken of my flesh, and cost me the dearest groans of a mother, I could not have owed her a more rooted love.


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Clo. At your service.

Laf. No, no, no.

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Laf. I like him well; 'tis not amiss. And I was about to tell you, since I heard of the good lady's death, and that my lord your son was upon his return home, I moved the king my master to speak in the behalf of my daughter; which, in the minority of them both, his majesty, out of a self-gracious remembrance, did first propose. His highness hath promised me to do it; and to stop up the displeasure he hath conceived against your son, there is no fitter matter. How does your ladyship like it?

Count. With very much content, my lord; and I wish it happily effected.

Laf. His highness comes post from Marseilles, of as able body as when he numbered thirty: he will be here to-morrow, or I am deceived by him that in such intelligence hath seldom failed.

Count. It rejoices me that I hope I shall see him ere I die. I have letters that my son will be here to-night: I shall beseech your lordship to remain with me till they meet together.


Laf. Madam, I was thinking with what manners I might safely be admitted.

Count. You need but plead your honourable privilege.

Laf. Lady, of that I have made a bold charter; but I thank my God it holds yet.

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Laf. A scar nobly got, or a noble scar, is a

Clo. Why, sir, if I cannot serve you, I can good livery of honour; so belike is that. serve as great a prince as you are. Laf. Who's that? a Frenchman?

Clo. Faith, sir, a' has an English name; but his phisnomy is more hotter in France than there. Laf. What prince is that?


Clo. The black prince, sir; alias, the prince of darkness; alias, the devil.

Laf. Hold thee, there's my purse. I give thee not this to suggest thee from thy master thou talkest of: serve him still.

Clo. I am a woodland fellow, sir, that always loved a great fire; and the master I speak of ever keeps a good fire. But, sure, he is the prince of the world let his nobility remain in's court. I am for the house with the narrow gate, which I take to be too little for pomp to enter: some that humble themselves may; but the many will be too chill and tender, and they 'll be for the flowery way that leads to the broad gate and the great fire.

Laf. Go thy ways, I begin to be aweary of thee; and I tell thee so before, because I would

Clo. But it is your carbonadoed face. Laf. Let us go see your son, I pray you : I long to talk with the young noble soldier.

Clo. Faith, there's a dozen of 'em, with delicate fine hats and most courteous feathers, which bow the head and nod at every man. Exeunt.


SCENE I.-Marseilles. A Street.

Enter HELENA, Widow, and DIANA, with two Attendants.

Hel. But this exceeding posting, day and night,

Must wear your spirits low; we cannot help it: But since you have made the days and nights

as one,

To wear your gentle limbs in my affairs,
Be bold you do so grow in my requital
As nothing can unroot you. In happy time;

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SCENE II.-Rousillon.


The inner Court of the COUNTESS's Palace.

Enter Clown and PAROLLES. Par. Good Monsieur Lavache, give my Lord Lafeu this letter. I have ere now, sir, been better known to you, when I have held familiarity with fresher clothes; but I am now, sir, muddied in fortune's mood, and smell somewhat strong of her strong displeasure.

Clo. Truly, fortune's displeasure is but sluttish if it smell so strongly as thou speakest of: I will henceforth eat no fish of fortune's buttering. Prithee, allow the wind.


Par. Nay, you need not to stop your nose, sir: I spake but by a metaphor.

Clo. Indeed, sir, if your metaphor stink, I will stop my nose; or against any man's metaphor. Prithee, get thee further.

Par. Pray you, sir, deliver me this paper. Clo. Foh! prithee, stand away: a paper from fortune's close-stool to give to a nobleman! Look, here he comes himself.

Enter LAFEU.

Here is a purr of fortune's, sir, or of fortune's cat, but not a musk-cat, that has fallen into the unclean fishpond of her displeasure, and, as he says, is muddied withal. Pray you, sir, use the

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Par. My lord, I am a man whom fortune hath cruelly scratched.


Laf. And what would you have me to do? Wherein 'Tis too late to pare her nails now. have you played the knave with fortune that she should scratch you, who of herself is a good lady, and would not have knaves thrive long under her? There's a quart d'écu for you. Let the justices make you and fortune friends; I am for other business.

Par. I beseech your honour to hear me one single word.

Laf. You beg a single penny more: come, you shall ha 't; save your word.


Par. My name, my good lord, is Parolles. Laf. You beg more than one word then. Cox my passion! give me your hand. How does your drum?

Par. O my good lord! you were the first that found me.

Laf. Was I, in sooth? and I was the first that lost thee.

Par. It lies in you, my lord, to bring me in some grace, for you did bring me out.


Laf. Out upon thee, knave! dost thou put upon me at once both the office of God and the devil? One brings thee in grace and the other brings thee out. Trumpets sound. The king's coming; I know by his trumpets. Sirrah, inquire further after me; I had talk of you last night: though you are a fool and a knave, you shall eat go to, follow. Par. I praise God for you.

Exeunt. 60

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"Tis past, my liege; And I beseech your majesty to make it Natural rebellion, done i' the blaze of youth; When oil and fire, too strong for reason's force, O'erbears it and burns on. King.

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My honour'd lady, I have forgiven and forgotten all Though my revenges were high bent upon him, And watch'd the time to shoot. Laf. This I must say,But first I beg my pardon,-the young lord Did to his majesty, his mother, and his lady, Offence of mighty note, but to himself The greatest wrong of all: he lost a wife Whose beauty did astonish the survey Of richest eyes, whose words all ears took captive, Whose dear perfection hearts that scorn'd to serve Humbly call'd mistress.

King. Praising what is lost Makes the remembrance dear. Well, call him hither;

We are reconcil'd, and the first view shall kill All repetition. Let him not ask our pardon:


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King. I am not a day of season, For thou may'st see a sunshine and a hail In me at once; but to the brightest beams Distracted clouds give way: so stand thou forth; The time is fair again.


My high-repented blames, Dear sovereign, pardon to me. King.

All is whole;


Not one word more of the consumed time.
Let's take the instant by the forward top,
For we are old, and on our quick'st decrees
The inaudible and noiseless foot of time
Steals ere we can effect them. You remember
The daughter of this lord?
Admiringly, my liege.
At first I stuck my choice upon her, ere my heart
Durst make too bold a herald of my tongue,
Where the impression of mine eye infixing,
Contempt his scornful perspective did lend me,
Which warp'd the line of every other favour;
Scorn'd a fair colour, or express'd it stolen ;
Extended or contracted all proportions
To a most hideous object: thence it came
That she, whom all men prais'd, and whom myself,
Since I have lost, have lov'd, was in mine eye
The dust that did offend it.

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That thou didst love her, strikes some scores away

From the great compt. But love, that comes too late,

Like a remorseful pardon slowly carried,
To the great sender turns a sour offence,
Crying, 'That's good that's gone.' Our rash

Make trivial price of serious things we have, 60
Not knowing them until we know their grave:
Oft our displeasures, to ourselves unjust,
Destroy our friends and after weep their dust:
Our own love waking cries to see what's done,
While shameful hate sleeps out the afternoon.
Be this sweet Helen's knell, and now forget her.
Send forth your amorous token for fair Maudlin:
The main consents are had; and here we'll stay
To see our widower's second marriage-day.
Count. Which better than the first, Ŏ dear
heaven, bless!


Or, ere they meet, in me, O nature, cesse !
Laf. Come on, my son, in whom my house's


Must be digested, give a favour from you To sparkle in the spirits of my daughter, That she may quickly come.

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I have seen her wear it; and she reckon'd it
At her life's rate.

I am sure I saw her wear it.
Ber. You are deceiv'd, my lord, she never sawit:
In Florence was it from a casement thrown me,
Wrapp'd in a paper, which contain'd the name
Of her that threw it. Noble she was, and thought
I stood engag'd: but when I had subscrib'd
To mine own fortune, and inform'd her fully
I could not answer in that course of honour
As she had made the overture, she ceas'd
In heavy satisfaction, and would never
Receive the ring again.


King. Plutus himself, That knows the tinct and multiplying medicine, Hath not in nature's mystery more science Than I have in this ring: 'twas mine, 'twas Helen's,

Whoever gave it you. Then, if you know That you are well acquainted with yourself, Confess 'twas hers, and by what rough enforcement

You got it from her. She call'd the saints to surety,

That she would never put it from her finger
Unless she gave it to yourself in bed
Where you have never come, or sent it us
Upon her great disaster.

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King. Thou speak'st it falsely, as I love mine honour;

And mak'st conjectural fears to come into me
Which I would fain shut out. If it should prove
That thou art so inhuman, 'twill not prove so;
And yet I know not: thou didst hate her deadly,
And she is dead; which nothing, but to close
Her eyes myself, could win me to believe,
More than to see this ring. Take him away.
Guards seize BERTRAM.
My fore-past proofs, howe'er the matter fall, 19
Shall tax my fears of little vanity,
Having vainly fear'd too little. Away with him!
We'll sift this matter further.

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BERTRAM gives a ring. Whether I have been to blame or no, I know not:

Here's a petition from a Florentine,


Who hath for four or five removes come short
To tender it herself. I undertook it,
Vanquish'd thereto by the fair grace and speech
Of the poor suppliant, who by this I know
Is here attending: her business looks in her
With an importing visage, and she told me,
In a sweet verbal brief, it did concern
Your highness with herself.

King. Upon his many protestations to marry me when his wife was dead, I blush to say it, he won me. Now is the Count Rousillon a widower: his vows are forfeited to me, and my honour's paid to him. He stole from Florence, taking no leave, and I follow him to his country for justice. Grant it me, O king! in you it best lies; otherwise a seducer flourishes, and a poor maid is undone. DIANA CAPILET.

Laf. I will buy me a son-in-law in a fair, and toll for this: I'll none of him.

King. The heavens have thought well on thee,

To bring forth this discovery. Seek these suitors:
Go speedily and bring again the count. 150
Exeunt Gentleman and some Attendants.
I am afeard the life of Helen, lady,
Was foully snatch'd.

Now, justice on the doers!
Re-enter BERTRAM, guarded.

King. I wonder, sir, sith wives are monsters to you,

And that you fly them as you swear them lordship, Yet desire to marry.


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Ber. My lord, I neither can nor will deny But that I know them: do they charge me further?

Dia. Why do you look so strange upon your wife?

Ber. She's none of mine, my lord.

If you shall marry,
You give away this hand, and that is mine;
You giveaway heaven's vows, and those are mine;
You give away myself, which is known mine; 170
For I by vow am so embodied yours

That she which marries you must marry me; Either both or none.

Laf. Your reputation comes too short for my daughter: you are no husband for her.

Ber. My lord, this is a fond and desperate

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Than in my thought it lies.

Good my lord,
Ask him upon his oath, if he does think
He had not my virginity.

King. What say'st thou to her?

She's impudent, my lord;
And was a common gamester to the camp.
Dia. He does me wrong, my lord; if I were so,
He might have bought me at a common price:
Do not believe him. O! behold this ring,
Whose high respect and rich validity
He gave it to a commoner o' the camp,
Did lack a parallel; yet for all that
If I be one.


He blushes, and 'tis it :


Of six preceding ancestors, that gem
Conferr'd by testament to the sequent issue,
Hath it been ow'd and worn. This is his wife:
That ring's a thousand proofs.

Methought you said
You saw one here in court could witness it.
Dia. I did, my lord, but loath am to produce
So bad an instrument: his name's Parolles. 200
Laf. I saw the man to-day, if man he be.
King. Find him, and bring him hither.
Exit an Attendant.
What of him?


He's quoted for a most perfidious slave,
With all the spots o' the world tax'd and de-

Whose nature sickens but to speak a truth.
Am I or that or this for what he 'll utter,
That will speak any thing?


She hath that ring of yours. Ber. I think she has certain it is I lik'd her,

And boarded her i' the wanton way of youth.
She knew her distance and did angle for me, 210
Madding my eagerness with her restraint,
As all impediments in fancy's course
Are motives of more fancy; and, in fine,
Her infinite cunning, with her modern grace,
Subdued me to her rate: she got the ring,
And I had that which any inferior might
At market-price have bought.


I must be patient;
You, that have turn'd off a first so noble wife,
May justly diet me. I pray you yet,
Since you lack virtue I will lose a husband, 220
Send for your ring; I will return it home,
And give me mine again.
I have it not.
King. What ring was yours, I pray you?
Sir, much like

The same upon your finger.
King. Know you this ring? this ring was his

of late.

Dia. And this was it I gave him, being a-bed. King. The story then goes false you threw it him Out of a casement. Dia.

I have spoke the truth. Re-enter Attendant with PAROLLES. Ber. My lord, I do confess the ring was hers. King. You boggle shrewdly, every feather starts you.

Is this the man you speak of?



charge you,

Ay, my lord.

I'll swear I am a maid, and he knows not.


King. Tell me, sirrah, but tell me true, I Great king, I am no strumpet, by my life;
I am either maid, or else this old man's wife.
Pointing to LAFEU.
King. She does abuse our ears: to prison
with her!

Not fearing the displeasure of your master,
Which, on your just proceeding I'll keep off,
By him and by this woman here what know you?
Par. So please your majesty, my master hath
been an honourable gentleman: tricks he hath
had in him, which gentlemen have.

King. Come, come, to the purpose: did he love this woman?

Par. Faith, sir, he did love her; but how?
King. How, I pray you?


Dia. Good mother, fetch my bail.

Exit Widow. Stay, royal sir:

The jeweller that owes the ring is sent for,
And he shall surety me. But for this lord,
Who hath abus'd me, as he knows himself,
Though yet he never harm'd me, here I quit him:

Par. He did love her, sir, as a gentleman He knows himself my bed he hath defil'd, loves a woman.

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Par. Yes, so please your majesty. I did go between them, as I said; but more than that, he loved her, for indeed he was mad for her, and talked of Satan, and of limbo, and of Furies, and I know not what yet I was in that credit with them at that time, that I knew of their going to bed, and of other motions, as promising her marriage, and things that would derive me ill will to speak of: therefore I will not speak what I know.

King. Thou hast spoken all already, unless thou canst say they are married: but thou art too fine in thy evidence; therefore, stand aside. This ring, you say, was yours?


Ay, my good lord. 270 King. Where did you buy it? or who gave it


Dia. It was not given me, nor I did not buy it.
King. Who lent it you?

It was not lent me neither.
King. Where did you find it then?
I found it not.
King. If it were yours by none of all these ways,
How could you give it him?

I never gave it him.
Laf. This woman's an easy glove, my lord:
she goes off and on at pleasure.
King. This ring was mine: I gave it his first


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And at that time he got his wife with child:
Dead though she be, she feels her young one kick:
So there's my riddle one that's dead is quick;
And now behold the meaning.

Re-enter Widow, with HELENA.

Is there no exorcist
Beguiles the truer office of mine eyes?
Is 't real that I see?

No, my good lord;
"Tis but the shadow of a wife you see;
The name and not the thing.
Both, both. O! pardon.
Hel. O my good lord! when I was like this


I found you wondrous kind. There is your ring:
And, look you, here's your letter; this it says:
When from my finger you can get this ring,
And are by me with child, etc.

This is done :

Will you be mine, now you are doubly won? Ber. If she, my liege, can make me know this clearly,

I'll love her dearly, ever, ever dearly.

Hel. If it appear not plain and prove untrue,
Deadly divorce step between me and you!
O my dear mother; do I see you living?


Laf. Mine eyes smell onions; I shall weepanon. To PAROLLES. Good Tom Drum, lend me a handkercher: so, I thank thee. Wait on me home, I'll make sport with thee: let thy courtesies alone, they are scurvy ones.

King. Let us from point to point this story

To make the even truth in pleasure flow.
To DIANA. If thou be'st yet a fresh uncropped

Choose thou thy husband, and I'll pay thy dower;
For I can guess that by thy honest aid
Thou kept'st a wife herself, thyself a maid.
Of that and all the progress, more and less,
Resolvedly more leisure shall express:
All yet seems well; and if it end so meet,
The bitter past, more welcome is the sweet.
Flourish. Exeunt.



The king's a beggar now the play is done:
All is well ended if this suit be won
That you express content; which we will pay,
With strife to please you, day exceeding day:
Ours be your patience then, and yours our parts;
Your gentle hands lend us, and take our hearts. 34

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