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Luc. Ay, madam; so you stumble not unheedfully. Jul. Of all the fair resort of gentlemen, That every day with parle1 encounter me, In thy opinion, which is worthiest love?
Luc. Please you, repeat their names, I'll show my mind
According to my shallow, simple skill.
Jul. What think'st thou of the fair Sir Eglamour? Luc. As of a knight well-spoken, neat and fine; But, were I you, he never should be mine.
Jul. What think'st thou of the rich Mercatio?
Luc. Pardon, dear madam; 'tis a passing shame, That I, unworthy body as I am,
Should censure thus on lovely gentlemen.
Jul. Why not on Proteus, as of all the rest?
Luc. Then thus,of many good I think him best.
Jul. Your reason?
Luc. I have no other but a woman's reason;
I think him so, because I think him so.
Jul. And would'st thou have me cast my love on him?
Luc. Ay, if you thought your love not cast away
2 To censure, in Shakspeare's time, generally signified to give one's judgment or opinion.
That the contents will show.
Jul. Say, say; who gave it thee?
Luc. Sir Valentine's page; and sent, I think, from
He would have given it you, but I, being in the way,
Jul. Now, by my modesty, a goodly broker!
There, take the paper, see it be returned;
Luc. To plead for love deserves more fee than hate.
Jul. Will you be gone?
That you may ruminate. [Exit.
How churlishly I chid Lucetta hence,
And ask permission for my folly past:—
That you might kill your stomach1 on your meat,
And not upon your maid.
Jul. What is't you took up
Jul. Why didst thou stoop then?
Luc. To take a paper up that I let fall.
Jul. And is that paper nothing?
Luc. Nothing concerning me.
Jul. Then let it lie for those that it concerns. Luc. Madam, it will not lie where it concerns, Unless it have a false interpreter.
Jul. Some love of yours hath writ to you in rhyme. Luc. That I might sing it, madam, to a tune: Give me a note: your ladyship can set.
Jul. As little by such toys as may be possible: Best sing it to the tune of Light o' love.
Luc. It is too heavy for so light a tune.
Jul. Heavy? belike it hath some burden then.
Luc. Ay; and melodious were it, would you sing it. Jul. And why not you?
Luc. I cannot reach so high.
Jul. Let's see your song:-How now, minion?
Luc. Keep tune there still, so you will sing it out.
And yet, methinks, I do not like this tune.
Jul. You do not?
Luc. No, madam; it is too sharp.
Luc. Nay, now you are too flat,
And mar the concord with too harsh a descant: 2
Jul The mean is drowned with your unruly base.
Jul. This babble shall not henceforth trouble me.
1 Passion or obstinacy.
2 Descant signified formerly what we now call variations. The mean is the tenor in music.
3 To bid the base means, to run fast, challenging another to pursue at the rustic game called Base, or Prisonbase. The allusion is somewhat obscure, but it appears to mean here, "to challenge to an encounter."
Here is a coil1 with protestation!
[Tears the letter.
Go, get you gone; and let the papers lie:
Luc. She makes it strange; but she would be best
To be so angered with another letter.
Jul. Nay, would I were as angered with the same!
I throw thy name against the bruising stones,
Till I have found each letter in the letter,
Except mine own name; that some whirlwind bear Unto a rugged, fearful, hanging rock,
And throw it thence into the raging sea!
Lo, here in one line is his name twice writ,-
Dinner is ready, and your father stays.
Jul. Well, let us go.
Luc. What, shall these papers lie like telltales here?
Jul. If you respect them, best to take them up. Luc. Nay, I was taken up for laying them down: Yet here they shall not lie, for catching cold.
Jul. I see you have a month's mind to them. Luc. Ay, madam, you may say what sights you see, I see things too, although you judge I wink. Jul. Come, come, will't please you go?
SCENE III. The same. A Room in Antonio's
Enter ANTONIO and PANTHINO.
Ant. Tell me, Panthino, what sad talk was that, Wherewith my brother held you in the cloister? Pant. 'Twas of his nephew Proteus, your son. Ant. Why, what of him?
He said, that Proteus, your son, was meet;
Which would be great impeachment1 to his age,
In having known no travel in his youth.
Ant. Nor need'st thou much impórtune me to that Whereon this month I have been hammering.
I have considered well his loss of time;
And perfected by the swift course of time:
Then, tell me, whither were I best to send him?
1 Reproach or imputation.