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Conceal me what I am, and be my aid
For such disguise as, haply, shall become
The form of my intent. I'll serve this Duke;
Thou shalt present me as an eunuch to him,
It may be worth thy pains; for I can fing,
And Ipeak to him in many forts of raufic,
That will allow me very worth his service.
What else may hap, to time I will commit;
Only shape thou thy silence to my wit.

Cap. Be you his eunuch, and your mute I'll be: When my tongue blabs, then let mine eyes not fee. Vio. I thank thee; lead me on.

[Excunt. SCENE, an Apartment in Olivia's House.

Enter Sir TOBY, and MARIA. Sir To. What a plague means my niece, to take the death of her brother thus? I am sure, care's an enemy to life.

Mar. By my troth, Sir Toby, you must come in earlier a-nights; your niece, my Lady, takes great exceptions to your ill hours.

Sir To. Why, let her except, before excepted.

Mar. Ay, but you must confine yourself within the modeft limits of order.

Sir To. Confine ? I'll confine myself no finer than I am; these cloaths are good enough to drink in, and so be these boots too; an they be not, let them hang themselves in their own straps

Mar. That quafling and drinking will undo you; I heard my Lady talk of it yesterday, and of a foolith knight that you brought in one night here, to be her wooer?

Sir To. Who, Sir Andrew Aguecheek?
Mar. Ay, he.
Sir To. He's as tall a man as any's in Illyria.

Mar. What's that to the purpose ?
Sir To. Why, he has three thousand ducats a-year.

Mar. Ay, but he'll have but a year in all these ducats: he's a very fool, and a prodig:21.

Sir 19. Fy, that you'll fay fo! he plays o'th' viol-de-gambo, and speaks three or four languages word for word without book, and hath all the good gifts of Nature.

Mar. He hath, indeed, almost natural; for besides that he's a fool, he's a great quarreler; and but that he hath the gift of a coward to allay the gust he hath in quarreling, 'tis thought among the prudent, he would quickly have the gift of a grave.

Sir To. By this hand they are scoundrels and subtractors that say so of him. Who are they?

Mar. They that add moreover, he's drunk nightly in your company.

Sir To. With drinking healths to my niece: I'll drink to her as long as there's a passage in my throat, and drink in Illyria." He's a coward, and a coystril, that will not drink to my niece 'till his brains turn o'th' toe like a parish top. What, wench? Gaffiliand vulgo, for here comes Sir Andrew Aguecheek.

Enter Sir ANDRÉW.
Sir And. Sir Toby Belch ! how now, Sir Toby
Belch?

Sir To. Sweet Sir Andrew !
Sir And. Bless you, fair fhrew.
Mar. And you too, Sir.
Sir To. Accoit, Sir Andrew, accoft...-...
Sir. And. What's that?
Sir To. My niece's chambermaid.

Sir And. Good Mrs Accot, I desire better ac quaintance.

my hand.

Mar. My name is Mary, Sir. Sir And. Good Mrs Mary Accost....... Sir To. You miltake, knight: accolt, is front her, board her, woo her, assail her,

Sir And. By my troth I would not undertake her in this company. Is that the ineaning of accoft!' ;. Mar. Fare you well, Gentlemen.

Sir To. An thou let her part so, Sir Andrew, would thou mightest never draw sword again. i Sir And. An you part so, mistress, I would I might never draw sword again. Fair lady, do you think you have fools in hand?

Mar. Sir, I have not you by the hand.

Sir And. Marry, but you shall have, and here's Mar. Now, Sir, thought is free: I pray you, bring your hand to the buttery-bar, and let it drink.

Sir And. Wherefore, sweet-heart? what's your metaphor?

Mar. It's dry, Sir. Sir And. Why, I think so: I am not such an ass, but I can keep my hand dry. But what's your jest?

Mar. A dry jest, Sir.
Sir And. Are

you

full of them? Mar. Ay, Sir, l' have them at my fingers ends : marry, now I let go your hand, i am barren.

[Exit Maria. · Sir To O Knight, thou lackest a cup of canary: when did I see thee fo put down?

Sir And. Never in your life, I think, unless you fee

canary put me down. Methinks fometimes I have no more wit than a Christian, or an ordinary 2. Vol. V.

B

man has; but I am a great eater of beef, and, I believe, that does harm to my wit.

Sir To. No question.

Sir And. An I thought that, I'd forswear it. I'll ride home to-morrow, Sir Toby.

Sir To. Pourquoy, my dear Knight?

Sir And. What is Pourquoy? do, or not do? I would I had bestowed that time in the tongues that I have in fencing, dancing, and bear-baiting. (2) 0, had I but followed the arts ! Sir To. Then hadít thou had an excellent head

of hair, Sir And. Why, would that have mended my hair?

1

(2) Sir And. -0, had I but followed I be arts !

Sir To. Then badst thou had an excellent head of bair..
Sir And. Why, would that have mended my hair

Sir To. Pasi question ; for thou seest it will not cool my mature,) Prodigious fagacity ? and yet thus it has passed down through all the printed copies. We cannot cnough admire that happy indolence of Mr Pope, which can acqui. esce in transmitting to us such stuff for genuine fenfe and argument. The dialogue is of a very light ftrain, 'tis certain, betwixt two foolith knights : but yet I would be very glad to know, methinks, what Sir Andrew's following the arts, or his hair being mended, could have to do with the cooling, or not cooling, Sir Toby's nature. But my emena dation clears up all this absurdity; and the context is an unexceptionable confirmation :

Sir ind. But it becomes me well enough, docs't not ?

Sir To. Excellent ! it hangs like fax on a diftaff, &c. I cannot pass over the remarkable conundrum betwixt Sir Andrew wishing he had followed the-arts, and Sir Toby's application of this to the ufing art in improving his hair: because I would obferve, what variety and what a contrast of characters the Poet has preferved in this pair of ridicu, lous knights. Sir Toby has moderate natural parts, and a smattering of education ; which makes him always to be sunning his wit, and gives him a predominance over the other. Sir Andrew is a blockhead by nature, and unin. proved by any acquirements from art; and so is made che very aavil to imposition and ridicule.

Sir To. Palt question; for, thou feeft, it will not curl by nature.

Sir And. But it becomes me well enough, does't not?

Sir To. Excellent ! it hangs like fax on a distaff: and I hope to see a house-wife take thee between her legs, and

spin it off. Sir And. Faith, I'll home to-morrow, Sir Toby; your niece will not be seen, or, if the be, it's four to one lhe'll none of me: the Duke himtelf here, hard by, wooes her.

Sir To. She'll none o'th' Duke, shc:ll not match above her degree, neither in estate, years nor wit; I have heard her swear it. Tut, there's lifein't, man.

Sir And. I'll stay a month longer. I am a fellow o'th' strangelt mind i'th' worid: I delight in masks and revels fometimes altogether.

Sir To. Art thou good at these kick-thaws,Knight

Sir And. As any man in Illyria whatsoever he be, under the degree of my berters; and yet I will not compare

with an old man. Sir To. What is thy excellence in a galliard, Knight!

Sir And. Faith, I can cut a caper.
Sir To. And I can cut the mutton to't.

Sir And. And, I think, I have the back-trick, fimply as strong as any man in Illyria,

Sir To. Wherefore are these things hid? wherefore have these gifts a curtain before 'em? are they like to take dust, like Mistress Mall's pi&urę! why dost thou not go to church in a galliard, and come home in a coranto? my very walk thould be a jig ! I would not so much as make water, but in a fink-apace : what doit thou mean ! is it a world to hide virtues in? I did think, by the excellent constitution

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