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wicked Hannibal, or I'll have mine action of battery on thee.

Escal. If he took you a box o' th' ear, you might have your action of slander too.

Elb. Marry, I thank your good worship for it: What is't your worship's pleasure I should do with this wicked caitiff?

Escal. Truly, officer, because he hath some offences in him, that thou wouldst discover if thou couldst, let him continue in his courses, till thou know'st what they are.

Elb. Marry, I thank your worship for it Thou seest, thou wicked varlet now, what's come upon thee; thou art to continue now, thou varlet; thou art to continue.

Escal. Where were you born, friend? [To Froth.
Froth. Here in Vienna, sir.

Escal. Are you of fourscore pounds a year?
Froth. Yes, and't please you, sir.

Escal. So. What trade are you of, sir?

[To the Clown.

Clo. A tapster; a poor widow's tapster.
Escal. Your mistress's name?
Clo. Mistress Over-done.

Escal. Hath she had any more than one husband?
Clo. Nine, sir; Over-done by the last.
Escal. Nine!-Come hither to me, master Froth.
Master Froth, I would not have you acquainted
with tapsters: they will draw you, master Froth,
and you will hang them: Get you gone, and let me
hear no more of you.

Froth. I thank your worship: For mine own part, I never come into any room in a taphouse, but I am drawn in.

Escal. Well; no more of it master Froth: farewell. [Exit Froth.]-Come you hither to me, master tapster; what's your name, master tapster? Clo. Pompey.

Escal. What else?
Clo. Bum, sir.

Escal. "Troth, and your bum is the greatest thing about you; so that, in the beastliest sense, you are Pompey the great. Pompey, you are partly a bawd, Pompey, howsoever you colour it in being a tapster. Are you not? come, tell me true; it shall be the better for you.

Clo. Truly, sir, I am a poor fellow, that would live. Escal. How would you live, Pompey? by being a bawd? What do you think of the trade, Pompey?

is it a lawful trade?

Clo. If the law would allow it, sir.

Escal. But the law will not allow it, Pompey nor it shall not be allowed in Vienna.

Clo. Does your worship mean to geld and spay all

the youth in the city?

Escal. No, Pompey.

Clo. Truly, sir, in my poor opinion, they will to't then: If your worship will take order for the drabs and the knaves, you need not to fear the bawds.

Escal. There are pretty orders beginning, I can tell you: It is but heading and hanging.

:

Clo. If you head and hang all that offend that way but for ten year together, you'll be glad to give out a commission for more heads. If this law hold in Vienna ten year, I'll rent the fairest house in it, after three-pence a bay: If you live to see this come to pass, say, Pompey told you so.

Escal. Thank you, good Pompey and, in requital of your prophecy, hark you, I advise you, let me not find you before me again upon any complaint whatsoever, no, not for dwelling where you do; if I do, Pompey, I shall beat you to your tent, and prove a shrewd Cæsar to you; in plain dealing, Pompey, I shall have you whipt: so for this time, Pompey, fare you well.

Clo. I thank your worship for your good counsel; but I shall follow it, as the flesh and fortune shall better determine.

hither, master Constable. How long have you been in this place of constable?

Elb. Seven year and a half, sir.

Escal. I thought, by your readiness in the office, you had continued in it some time: You say, seven years together?

Elb. And a half, sir.

Escal. Alas! it hath been great pains to you! They do you wrong to put you so oft upon't: Are there not men in your ward sufficient to serve it?

Elb. Faith, sir, few of any wit in such matters: as they are chosen, they are glad to choose me for them; I do it for some piece of money, and go through with all.

Escal. Look you, bring me in the names of some six or seven, the most sufficient of your parish. Elb. To your worship's house, sir?

Escal. To my house : Fare you well. [Exit Elbow.] What's o'clock, think you?

.Just. Eleven, sir.

Escal. I pray you home to dinner with me.
Just. I humbly thank you.

Escal. It grieves me for the death of Claudio;
But there's no remedy.

Just. Lord Angelo is severe.

Escal.

It is but needful:

Mercy is not itself, that oft looks so;
Pardon is still the nurse of second woe:
But yet,-Poor Claudio!-There's no remedy.
Come, sir.
[Exeunt.
SCENE II.-Another Room in the same.
Enter Provost and a Servant.

Serv. He's hearing of a cause; he will come
I'll tell him of you.
straight.

Prov. Pray you do. [Exit Servant.] I'll know
His pleasure; may be, he will relent: Alas,
He hath but as offended in a dream!
To die for it!
All sects, all ages, smack of this vice; and he

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To some more fitter place; and that with speed.

Re-enter Servant.
Serv. Here is the sister of the man condemn'd, '
Desires access to you.

Ang.
Hath he a sister?
Prov. Ay, my good lord; a very virtuous maid,
And to be shortly of a sisterhood,
If not already.
Ang.

Well, let her be admitted.
[Exit Servant.
See you, the fornicatress be remov'd;
Let her have needful, but not lavish, means;
There shall be order for it.

Enter Lucio and Isabella.

Prov. Save your honour! [Offering to retire. Ang. Stay a little while.-[To Isab.] You are welcome: What's your will? Isab. I am a woeful suitor to your honour, Please but your honour hear me. Ang. Well; what's your suit? Isab. There is a vice, that most I do abhor, Escal. Come hither to me, master Elbow; come And most desire should meet the blow of justice;

Whip me? No, no; let carman whip his jade;
The valiant heart's not whipt out of his trade.

[Exit.

For which I would not plead, but that I must;
For which I must not plead, but that I am
At war, 'twixt will, and will not.
Ang.

Well; the matter?
Isab. I have a brother is condemn'd to die :
I do beseech you, let it be his fault,
And not my brother.

Prov.

Heaven give thee moving graces! Ang. Condemn the fault, and not the actor of it! Why, every fault's condemn'd, ere it be done : Mine were the very cipher of a function, To find the faults, whose fine stands in record, And let go by the actor. Isab.

O just, but severe law! I had a brother then.-Heaven keep your honour! [Retiring. Lucio. [To Isab.] Giv't not o'er so to him again, intreat him;

Kneel down before him, hang upon his gown;
You are too cold if you should need a pin,
You could not with more tame a tongue desire it:
To him, I say.

Isub. Must he needs die?
Ang.

Maiden, no remedy.
Isab. Yes; I do think that you might pardon him,
And neither heaven, nor man, grieve at the mercy.
Ang. I will not do't.
Isab.
But can you, if you would?
Ang. Look, what I will not, that I cannot do.
Isab. But might you do't, and do the world no
wrong,

If so your heart were touch'd with that remorse As mine is to him?

Ang.

He's sentenc'd; 'tis too late. Lucio. You are too cold. [To Isabella. Isab. Too late? why, no; I, that do speak a word, May call it back again: Well, believe this, No ceremony that to great ones 'longs, Not the king's crown, nor the deputed sword, The marshal's truncheon, nor the judge's robe, Become them with one half so good a grace, As mercy does. If he had been as you, And you as he, you would have slipt like him; But he, like you, would not have been so stern. Ang. Pray you, begone.

Isab. I would to heaven I had your potency, And you were Isabel? should it then be thus ? No; I would tell what 'twere to be a judge, And what a prisoner.

Lucio. Ay, touch him: there's the vein. [Aside. Ang. Your brother is a forfeit of the law, And you but waste your words.

Isab.

Alas! alas!

Why, all the souls that were, were forfeit once;
And He that might the vantage best have took,
Found out the remedy: How would you be,
If he, which is the top of judgment, should
But judge you as you are? O, think on that;
And mercy then will breathe within your lips,
Like man new made.
Ang.
Be you content, fair maid;
It is the law, not I, condemns your brother:
Were he my kinsman, brother, or my son,
It should be thus with him;-he must die to-
[spare him:
Isab. To-morrow? O, that's sudden! Spare him,
He's not prepar'd for death! Even for our kitchens
We kill the fowl of season; shall we serve heaven
With less respect than we do minister
To our gross selves? Good, good my lord, bethink
Who is it that hath died for this offence?
There's many have committed it.
Lucio.

morrow.

[you:

Ay, well said.

Ang. The law hath not been dead, though it hath slept:

Those many had not dar'd to do that evil,
If the first man that did the edict infringe,
Had answer'd for his deed: now, 'tis awake;
Takes note of what is done; and, like a prophet,
Looks in a glass, that shows what future evils,
(Either now, or by remissness new-conceiv'd,
And so in progress to be hatch'd and born,)

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Lucio.

That's well said.
Isab. Could great men thunder
As Jove himself does, Jove would ne'er be quiet,
For every pelting, petty officer,
Would use his heaven for thunder: nothing but
Merciful heaven!
[thunder.-

Thou rather, with thy sharp and sulphurous bolt,
Split'st the unwedgeable and gnarled oak,
Than the soft myrtle ;-0, but man, proud man!
Drest in a little brief authority;
Most ignorant of what he's most assur'd,
His glassy essence,-like an angry ape,
Plays such fantastick tricks before high heaven,
As make the angels weep; who, with our spleens,
Would all themselves laugh mortal.

Lucio. O, to him, to him, wench: he will relent; He's coming, I perceive't.

Prov.

Pray heaven, she win him! Isab. We cannot weigh our brother with ourself: Great men may jest with saints: 'tis wit in them; But, in the less, foul profanation.

Lucio. Thou'rt in the right, girl; more o'that. Isab. That in the captain's but a cholerick word, Which in the soldier is flat blasphemy.

Lucio. Art advis'd o' that? more on't. Ang. Why do you put these sayings upon me? Isab. Because authority, though it err like others, Hath yet a kind of medicine in itself,

That skins the vice o' the top: Go to your bosom; Knock there; and ask your heart, what it doth

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Lucio. You had marr'd all else.

Isab. Not with fond shekels of the tested gold,
Or stones, whose rates are either rich, or poor,
As fancy values them: but with true prayers,
That shall be up at heaven, and enter there,
Ere sun-rise: prayers from preserved souls,
From fasting maids, whose minds are dedicate
To nothing temporal.
Ang.
Well: come to me
To-morrow.

Lucio. Go to; it is well away. [Aside to Isabel.
Isab. Heaven keep your honour safe!
Ang.

Am that way going to temptation,
Where prayers cross.

Isab.

Amen for I [Aside.

At what hour to-morrow

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Not she; nor doth she tempt: but it is I,
That lying by the violet, in the sun,
Do as the carrion does, not as the flower,
Corrupt with virtuous season. Can it be,
That modesty may more betray our sense
Than woman's lightness? Having waste ground
Shall we desire to raze the sanctuary, [enough,
And pitch our evils there? O, fy, fy, fy!
What dost thou? or what art thou, Angelo ?
Dost thou desire her foully, for those things
That make her good? O, let her brother live:
Thieves for their robbery have authority,
When judges steal themselves. What? do I love
That I desire to hear her speak again, [her,
And feast upon her eyes? What is't I dream on?
O cunning enemy, that, to catch a saint,
With saints dost bait thy hook! Most dangerous
Is that temptation, that doth goad us on
To sin in loving virtue: never could the strumpet,
With all her double vigour, art, and nature,
Once stir my temper; but this virtuous maid
Subdues me quite;-Ever till now,

When men were fond, I smil'd and wonder'd how.

[Exit.

SCENE III.-A Room in a Prison. Enter Duke, habited like a Friar, and Provost. Duke. Hail to you, provost! so, I think you are. Prov. I am the provost: What's your will, good friar ?

Duke. Bound by my charity, and my bless'd order, 1 come to visit the afflicted spirits

Here in the prison: do me the common right
To let me see them; and to make me know
The nature of their crimes, that I may minister
To them accordingly.

Prov. I would do more than that if more were needful.

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Mutually.

Duke. Then was your sin of heavier kind than Juliet. I do confess it, and repent it, father. [his. Duke. 'Tis meet so, daughter: but lest you do repent,

As that the sin hath brought you to this shame,Which sorrow is always toward ourselves, not heaven;

Showing, we'd not spare heaven, as we love it,
But as we stand in fear,-

Juliet. I do repent me, as it is an evil;
And take the shame with joy.

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SCENE IV.-A Room in Angelo's House. Enter Angelo.

Ang. When I would pray and think, I think and

pray

To several subjects: heaven hath my empty words:
Whilst my invention, hearing not my tongue,
Anchors on Isabel: Heaven in my mouth,
As if I did but only chew his name;
And in my heart, the strong and swelling evil
Of my conception: The state whereon I studied,
Is like a good thing, being often read,
Grown fear'd and tedious; yea, my gravity,
Wherein (let no man hear me) I take pride,
Could I, with boot, change for an idle plume,
Which the air beats for vain. O place! O form!
How often dost thou with thy case, thy habit,
Wrench awe from fools, and tie the wiser souls
To thy false seeming? Blood, thou still art blood:
Let's write good angel on the devil's horn,
"Tis not the devil's crest.

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Ang. Yea.

Isab. When, I beseech you? that in his reprieve, Longer, or shorter, he may be so fitted, That his soul sicken not.

Ang. Ha! Fye, these filthy vices! It were as good

To pardon him, that hath from nature stolen
A man already made, as to remit
Their sawcy sweetness, that do coin heaven's image,
In stamps that are forbid: 'tis all as easy
Falsely to take away a life true made,
As to put mettle in restrained means,
To make a false one.

Isab. "Tis set down so in heaven, but not in earth.
Ang. Say you so? then I shall poze you quickly.
Which had you rather, That the most just law
Now took your brother's life; or, to redeem him,
Give up your body to such sweet uncleanness,
As she that he hath stain'd?
Isab.

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Sir, believe this, I had rather give my body than my soul. Ang. I talk not of your soul; Our compell'd sins Stand more for number than accompt. Isab. How say you Ang. Nay, I'll not warrant that; for I can speak Against the thing I say. Answer to this ;I, now the voice of the recorded law, Pronounce a sentence on your brother's life:

Might there not be a charity in sin,
To save this brother's life?
Isab.

Please you to do'c,
I'll take it as a peril to my soul,
It is no sin at all, but charity.

Ang. Pleas'd you to do't, at peril of your soul, Were equal poize of sin and charity.

Isab. That I do beg his life, if it be sin, Heaven, let me bear it! you granting of my suit, If that be sin, I'll make it my morn prayer To have it added to the faults of mine, And nothing of your, answer.

Ang. Nay, but hear me: Your sense pursues not mine: either you are ignorant,

Or seem so, craftily; and that's not good.

Isab. Let me be ignorant, and in nothing good, But graciously to know I am no better.

Ang. Thus wisdom wishes to appear most bright, When it doth tax itself: as these black masks Proclaim an enshield beauty ten times louder Than beauty could displayed.-But mark me; To be received plain, I'll speak more gross Your brother is to die.

Isub. So.

Ang. And his offence is so, as it appears Accountant to the law upon that pain. Isab. True.

Ang. Admit no other way to save his life, (As I subscribe not that, nor any other, But in the loss of question,) that you, his sister, Finding yourself desir'd of such a person, Whose credit with the judge, or own great place, Could fetch your brother from the manacles Of the all-binding law; and that there were No earthly mean to save him, but that either You must lay down the treasures of your body To this supposed, or else let him suffer; What would you do?

Isab. As much for my poor brother, as myself: That is, Were I under the terms of death, The impression of keen whips I'd wear as rubies, And strip myself to death, as to a bed That longing I have been sick for, ere I'd yield My body up to shame. Then must your brother die. Isab. And 'twere the cheaper way: Better it were, a brother died at once, Than that a sister, by redeeming him, Should die for ever.

Ang.

Ang. Were not you then as cruel as the sentence That you have slander'd so?

Isub. Ignominy in ransom, and free pardon, Are of two houses: lawful mercy is

Nothing akin to foul redemption.

Ang. You seem'd of late to make the law a tyrant; And rather prov'd the sliding of your brother A merriment than a vice.

Isab. O, pardon me, my lord; it oft falls out, To have what we'd have, we speak not what we

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ing!

I will proclaim thee, Angelo; look for't:
Sign me a present pardon for my brother,
Or, with an outstretch'd throat, I'll tell the world
Aloud, what man thou art.

Ang.
Who will believe thee, Isabel?
My unsoil'd name, the austereness of my life,
My vouch against you, and my place i' the state,
Will so your accusation overweigh,

That you shall stifle in your own report,
And smell of calumny. I have begun;
And now I give my sensual race the rein:
Fit thy consent to my sharp appetite;
Lay by all nicety, and prolixious blushes,

That banish what they sue for; redeem thy brother
By yielding up thy body to my will;
Or else he must not only die the death,
But thy unkindness shall his death draw out
To lingering sufferance: answer me to-morrow,
Or, by the affection that now guides me most,
I'll prove a tyrant to him: As for you,

Say what you can, my false o'erweighs your true.

[Exit

Isab. To whom shall I complain? Did I tell this,
Who would believe me? O perilous mouths,
That bear in them one and the self-same tongue,
Either of condemnation or approof!
Bidding the law make court'sy to their will;
Hooking both right and wrong to the appetite,
To follow as it draws I'll to my brother:
Though he hath fallen by prompture of the blood,
Yet hath he in him such a mind of honour,
That had he twenty heads to tender down
On twenty bloody blocks, he'd yield them up,
Before his sister should her body stoop
To such abhorr'd pollution.

Then Isabel, live chaste, and, brother, die :
More than our brother is our chastity.
I'll tell him yet of Angelo's request,

And fit his mind to death, for his soul's rest.

ACT III.

SCENE I.A Room in the Prison. Enter Duke, Claudio, and Provost.

[Exit.

Duke. So, then you hope of pardon from lord Angelo ?

Claud. The miserable have no other medicine, But only hope :

I have hope to live, and am prepar'd to die.
Duke. Be absolute for death; either death, or life,
Shall thereby be the sweeter. Reason thus with
If I do lose thee, I do lose a thing
[life,-
That none but fools would keep a breath thou art,
(Servile to all the skiey influences,)
That dost this habitation, where thou keep'st,
Hourly afflict: merely thou art death's fool;
For him thou labour'st by thy flight to shun,
And yet run'st toward him still: Thou art not

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Of a poor worm: Thy best of rest is sleep,
And that thou oft provok'st; yet grossly fear'st
Thy death, which is no more. Thou art not thyself;
For thou exist'st on many a thousand grains
That issue out of dust: Happy thou art not:
For what thou hast not, still thou striv'st to get;
And what thou hast, forget'st: Thou art not
certain ;

For thy complexion shifts to strange effects,
After the moon: If thou art rich, thou art poor;
For, like an ass, whose back with ingots bows,
Thou bear'st thy heavy riches but a journey,
And death unloads thee: Friend hast thou none;
For thine own bowels, which do call thee sire,
The mere effusion of thy proper loins,

Do curse the gout, serpigo, and the rheum,
For ending thee no sooner: Thou hast nor youth,

nor age;

But, as it were, an after-dinner's sleep,
Dreaming on both for all thy blessed youth
Becomes as aged, and doth beg the alms

Of palsied eld; and when thou art old, and rich,
Thou hast neither heat, affection, limb, nor beauty,
To make thy riches pleasant. What's yet in this,
That bears the name of life? Yet in this life
Lie hid more thousand deaths: yet death we fear,
That makes these odds all even.
Claud.
1 humbly thank you.
To sue to live, I find, I seek to die;
And, seeking death, find life: Let it come on.

Enter Isabella.

Isab. What, ho! Peace here; grace and good company!

Prov. Who's there? come in the wish deserves a welcome.

Prov.

Duke. Dear sir, ere long I'll visit you again. Claud. Most holy sir, I thank you. Isab. My business is a word or two with Claudio. Prov. And very welcome. Look, signior, here's Duke. Provost, a word with you. [your sister. As many as you please. Duke. Bring them to speak, where I may be conceal'd, [Exeunt Duke and Provost. Now, sister, what's the comfort? Isab. Why, as all comforts are; most good in Lord Angelo, having affairs to heaven, [deed: Intends you for his swift embassador, Where you shall be an everlasting leiger: Therefore your best appointment make with speed: To-morrow you set on.

Yet hear them.

Claud.

Claud. Is there no remedy? Isab. None, but such remedy, as, to save a head, To cleave a heart in twain.

Claud.

But is there any? Isab. Yes, brother, you may live; There is a devilish mercy in the judge, If you'll implore it, that will free your life, But fetter you till death.

Claud.

Perpetual durance?

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Isab. In such a one as (you consenting to't) Would bark your honour from that trunk you bear, And leave you naked.

Claud.

Let me know the point. Isab. O, I do fear thee, Claudio; and I quake, Lest thou a feverous life should'st entertain, And six or seven winters more respect Than a perpetual honour. Dar'st thou die? The sense of death is most in apprehension; And the poor beetle, that we tread upon, In corporal sufferance finds a pang as great As when a giant dies. Claud.

Why give you me this shame ? Think you I can a resolution fetch From flowery tenderness? If I must die, I will encounter darkness as a bride, And hug it in mine arms.

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Thanks, dear Isabel.

Isab. Be ready, Claudio, for your death to morClaud. Yes. Has he affections in him, [row. That thus can make him bite the law by the nose; When he would force it? Sure it is no sin; Or of the deadly seven it is the least. Isab. Which is the least?

Claud. If it were damnable, he, being so wise, Why, would he for the momentary trick Be perdurably fin'd?-O Isabel! Isab. What says my brother? Claud.

Death is a fearful thing. Isab. And shamed life a hateful. Claud. Ay, but to die, and go we know not where; To lie in cold obstruction, and to rot; This sensible warm motion to become A kneaded clod; and the delighted spirit To bathe in fiery floods, or to reside In thrilling regions of thick-ribbed ice; To be imprison'd in the viewless winds, And blown with restless violence round about The pendent world; or to be worse than worst Of those, that lawless and incertain thoughts Imagine howling!-'tis too horrible! The weariest and most loathed worldly life, That age, ach, penury, and imprisonment Can lay on nature, is a paradise To what we fear of death.

Isab. Alas! alas! Claud.

Sweet sister, let me live. What sin you do to save a brother's life, Nature dispenses with the deed so far, That it becomes a virtue.

Isab.

O, you beast!

O, faithless coward! O, dishonest wretch!
Wilt thou be made a man out of my vice?
Is't not a kind of incest, to take life
From thine own sister's shame?

think?

What should I

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