Billeder på siden
PDF
ePub

COMEDY OF ERRORS.

Act II. SCENE I.

Adriana.
EITHER my husband, nor the slave re-

turned,
That in such haste I sent to seek his master!

Sure, Luciana, it is two o'clock. Luciana. Perhaps, some merchant hath invited him, And from the mart he's somewhere gone to dinner; Good sister, let us dine, and never fret : A man is master of his liberty : Time is their master; and, when they see time, They'll go, or come: If so, be patient, sister.

Adriana. Why should their liberty than ours be more? Luciana. Because their business still lies out o'door. Adriana. Look, when I serve him so, he takes it ill. Luciana. O, know, he is the bridle of your will. Adriana. There's none, but asses, will be bridled so.

Luciana. Why, headstrong liberty is lash'd with woe. There's nothing, situate under Heaven's eye, But hath his bound, in earth, in sea, in sky : The beasts, the fishes, and the winged fowls, Are their males' subjects, and at their controls :

Men, more divine, the masters of all these,
Lords of the wide world, and wild watry seas,
Indued with intellectual sense and souls,
Of more pre-eminence than fish and fowls,
Are masters to their females, and their lords :
Then let your will attend on

their

accords. Adriana. This servitude makes you to keep unwed. Luciana. Not this, but troubles of the marriage bed. Adriana. But, were you wedded, you would bear some

sway.
Luciana. Ere I learn love, I'll practise to obey.
Adriana. How if your husband start some other where?
Luciana. Till he come home again, I would forbear.
Adriana. Patience, unmov'd, no marvel though she

pause;
They can be meek, that have no other cause.
A wretched soul, bruis’d with adversity,
We bid be quiet, when we hear it cry ;
But were we burden’d with like weight of pain,
As much, or more, we should ourselves complain :
So thou, that hast no unkind mate to grieve thee,
With urging helpless patience would'st relieve me:
But, if thou live to see like right bereft,
This fool-begg'd patience in thee will be left.

Luciana. Well, I will marry one day, but to try ;
Here comes your man, now is your husband nigh.

[blocks in formation]

Cordelia.
OOD my lord
You have begot me, bred me, lov'd me: I
Return those duties back as are right fit,

Obey you, love you, and most honour you.
Why have my sisters husbands, if they say,
They love you, all? Haply, when I shall wed,
That lord, whose hand must take my plight, shall carry
Half my love with him, half my care, and duty :
Sure, I shall never marry like my sisters,
To love my father all.

[blocks in formation]

France.

This is most strange !
That she, that even but now was your best object,
The argument of your praise, balm of your age,
Most best, most dearest, should in this trice of time
Commit a thing so monstrous, to dismantle

folds of favour ! Sure, her offence
Must be of such unnatural degree,
That monsters it, or your fore-vouch'd affection

So many

Fall into taint : which to believe of her
Must be a faith, that reason without miracle
Could never plant in me.
Cordelia.

I yet beseech your majesty
(If for I want that glib and oily art,
To speak and purpose not; since what I well intend,
I'll do 't before I speak), that

you

make known
It is no vicious blot, murder, or foulness,
No unchaste action, or dishonour'd step,
That hath depriv'd me of your grace and favour :
But even for want of that, for which I am richer ;
A still-soliciting eye, and such a tongue
That I am glad I have not, though not to have it,
Hath lost me in your liking.
Lear.

Better thou
Hadst not been born, than not to have pleas'd me better.

France. Is it but this ? a tardiness in nature,
Which often leaves the history unspoke,
That it intends to do?—My Lord of Burgundy,
What say you to the lady ? Love is not love,
When it is mingled with respects, that stand
Aloof from the entire point. Will you have her?
She is herself a dowry.

1

[ocr errors][merged small]

France. Fairest Cordelia, that art most rich, being poor;
Most choice, forsaken ; and most lov'd, despised !
Thee and thy virtues here I seize upon:
Be it lawful, I take up what's cast away.
Gods, gods ! 'tis strange, that from their cold'st neglect
My love should kindle to inflam'd respect.—
Thy dowerless daughter, king, thrown to my chance,
Is queen of us, of ours, and our fair France :
Not all the dukes of wat'rish Burgundy

Shall buy this unpriz'd precious maid of me.-
Bid them farewell, Cordelia, though unkind :
Thou losest here, a better where to find.

*

France. Bid farewell to your sisters.

Cordelia. The jewels of our father, with wash'd eyes Cordelia leaves you; I know you what you are : And, like a sister, am most loath to call Your faults, as they are nam'd. Use well our father : To your professed bosoms I commit him: But yet, alas! stood I within his grace, I would prefer him to a better place. So farewell to you both.

Act IV. SCENE VII.

Cordelia. O thou good Kent, how shall I live, and work,
To match thy goodness? My life will be too short,
And
every

measure fail me.
Kent. To be acknowledg'd, madam, is o'erpaid.
All my reports go with the modest truth;
Nor more, nor clipp'd, but so.
Cordelia.

Be better suited :
These weeds are memories of those worser hours;
I prythee, put them off.
Kent.

Pardon me, dear madam ;
Yet to be known, shortens my made intent:
My boon I make it, that you know me not,
Till time and I think meet.
Cordelia. Then be it so, my good lord.—How does

the king? Physician. Madam, sleeps still.

« ForrigeFortsæt »