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Thu. That hath more mind to feed on your blood, than live in your air.

Val. You have said, Sir.

Thu. Ay, Sir, and done too, for this time.

Val. I know it well, Sir; you always end ere you begin.

Sil. A fine volley of words, gentlemen, and quickly shot off. Val. 'Tis indeed, Madam; we thank the giver.

Sil. Who is that, servant?

Val. Yourself, sweet lady; for you gave the fire: Sir Thurio borrows his wit from your ladyship's looks, and spends what he borrows, kindly in your company.

Thu. Sir, if you spend word for word with me, I shall make your wit bankrupt.

Val. I know it well, Sir: you have an exchequer of words, and, I think, no other treasure to give your followers; for it appears by their bare liveries, that they live by your bare words.

Sil. No more, gentlemen, no more; here comes my father.

Enter DUKE.

Duke. Now, daughter Silvia, you are hard beset.

Sir Valentine, your father's in good health:

What say you to a letter from your friends

Of much good news?

Val. My lord, I will be thankful

To any happy messenger from thence.

Duke. Know you Don Antonio, your countryman?
Val. Ay, my good lord, I know the gentleman

To be of worth, and worthy estimation,

And not without desert so well reputed.

Duke. Hath he not a son?

Val. Ay, my good lord; a son, that well deserves The honour and regard of such a father.

Duke. You know him well?

Val. I knew him as myself; for from our infancy
We have conversed, and spent our hours together:
And though myself have been an idle truant,
Omitting the sweet benefit of time,

To clothe mine age with angel-like perfection;
Yet hath Sir Proteus, for that's his name,
Made use and fair advantage of his days;
His years but young, but his experience old;
His head unmellow'd, but his judgment ripe;
And, in a word (for far behind his worth
Come all the praises that I now bestow),
He is complete in feature, and in mind,
With all good grace to grace a gentleman.

Duke. Beshrew* me, Sir, but, if he make this good,
He is as worthy for an empress' love,

As meet to be an emperor's counsellor.
Well, Sir; this gentleman is come to me,
With commendation from great potentates;

* I betide.

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And here he means to spend his time awhile:
I think, 'tis no unwelcome news to you.

Val. Should I have wish'd a thing, it had been he.
Duke. Welcome him then according to his worth;
Silvia, I speak to you; and you, Sir Thurio:-
For Valentine, I need not, 'cité him to it:
I'll send him hither to you presently.

Val. This is the gentleman, I told your ladyship,
Had come along with me, but that his mistress
Did hold his eyes lock'd in her crystal looks.

Sil. Belike, that now she hath enfranchised them
Upon some other pawn for fealty.

[Exit DUKE.

Val. Nay, sure, I think, she holds them prisoners still.
Sil. Nay, then he should be blind; and, being blind,
How could he see his way to seek out you?

Val. Why, lady, love hath twenty pair of eyes.
Thu. They say that love hath not an eye at all.
Val. To see such lovers, Thurio, as yourself;
Upon a homely object love can wink.

Enter PROTEUS.

Sil. Have done, have done; here comes the gentleman.
Tal. Welcome, dear Proteus !-Mistress, I beseech you,
Confirm his welcome with some special favour.

Sil. His worth is warrant for his welcome hither,
If this be he you oft have wish'd to hear from.
Val. Mistress, it is: sweet lady, entertain him
To be my fellow-servant to your ladyship.

Sil. Too low a mistress for so high a servant.
Pro. Not so, sweet lady; but too mean a servant
To have a look of such a worthy mistress.
Val. Leave off discourse of disability:-
Sweet lady, entertain him for your servant.
Pro. My duty will I boast of,-nothing else.
Sil. And duty never yet did want his meed;
Servant, you are welcome to a worthless mistress.
Pro. I'll die on him that says so, but yourself.
Sil. That you are welcome?

Pro. No; that you are worthless.

Enter SERVANT.

Ser. Madam, my lord your father would speak with you.
Sil. I'll wait upon his pleasure.

Come, Sir Thurio,

Go with me:-Once more, new servant, welcome:

I'll leave you to confer of home affairs;

When you have done, we look to hear from you.
Pro. We'll both attend upon your ladyship.

[Exit SER.

[Exeunt SILVIA, THURIO, and SPEED.

Val. Now, tell me, how do all from whence you came?
Pro. Your friends are well, and have them much commended.
Val. And how do yours?

Pro. I left them all in health.

Val. How does your lady? and how thrives your love? Pro. My tales of love were wont to weary you;

I know, you joy not in a love-discourse.

Val. Ay, Proteus, but that life is alter'd now:
I have done penance for contemning love;
Whose high imperious thoughts have punish'd me
With bitter fasts, with penitential groans,
With nightly tears, and daily heart-sore sighs;
For, in revenge of my contempt of love,

Love hath chased sleep from my enthralled eyes,
And made them watchers of mine own heart's sorrow.
O, gentle Proteus, love's a mighty lord;

And hath so humbled me, as, I confess,

There is 10 woe to his correction,

Nor, to his service, no such joy on earth!

Now, no discourse, except it be of love;

Now can I break my fast, aine, sup, and sleep,
Upon the very naked name of love."

Pro. Enough; I read your fortune in your eye:

Was this the idol that you worship so?

Val. Even she; and is she not a heavenly saint?
Pro. No; but she is an earthly paragon.
Val. Call her divine.

Pro. I will not flatter her.

Val. O, flatter me; for love delights in praises. Pro. When I was sick, you gave me bitter pills; And I must minister the like to you.

Val. Then speak the truth by her; if not divine,
Yet let her be a principality,

Sovereign to all the creatures on the earth.
Pro. Except my mistress.

Val. Sweet, except not any;

Except thou wilt except against my love.

Pro. Have I not reason to prefer mine own? Val. And I will help thee to prefer her too: She shall be dignified with this high honour,To bear my lady's train; lest the base earth Should from her vesture chance to steal a kiss, And, of so great a favour growing proud, Disdain to root the summer-swelling flower, And make rough winter everlastingly.

Pro. Why, Valentine, what braggardism is this? Val. Pardon me, Proteus: all I can, is nothing To her, whose worth makes other worthies nothing; She is alone.

Pro. Then let her alone.

Val. Not for the world why man, she is mine own; And I as rich in having such a jewel,

As twenty seas, if all their sand were pearl,
The water nectar, and the rocks pure gold.
Forgive me, that I do not dream on thee,
Because thou seest me dote upon my love.

My foolish rival, that her father likes,

Only for his possessions are so huge,

Is gone with her along; and I must after,
For love, thou know'st, is full of jealousy.
Pro. But she loves you?

Val. Ay, and we are betrothed;
Nay, more, our marriage hour,

With all the cunning manner of our flight,
Determined of: how I must climb her window;
The ladder made of cords; and all the means
Plotted; and 'greed on, for my happiness.
Good Proteus, go with me to my chamber,
In these affairs to aid me with thy counsel.
Pro. Go on before; I shall inquire you forth:
I must unto the road, to disembark

Some necessaries that I needs must use;
And then I'll presently attend you.
Val. Will you make haste?

Pro. I will.

Even as one heat another heat expels,

Or as one nail by strength drives out another,
So the remembrance of my former love
Is by a newer object quite forgotten.
Is it mine eye, or Valentinus' praise,

Her true perfection, or my false transgression,
That makes me, reasonless, to reason thus ?
She's fair; and so is Julia, that I love;-
That I did love, for now my love is thaw'd;
Which, like a waxen image 'gainst a fire,
Bears no impression of the thing it was.
Methinks, my zeal to Valentine is cold;
And that I love him not, as I was wont:
O! but I love his lady too, too much:
And that's the reason I love him so little.
How shall I dote on her with more advice,*
That thus without advice begin to love her?
"Tis but her picture I have yet beheld,
And that hath dazzled so my reason's light;
But when I look on her perfections,
There is no reason but I shall be blind.
If I can check my erring love, I will;
If not, to compass her I'll use my skill.

SCENE V-The same. A Street.

Enter SPEED and LAUNCE.

[Exit VAL.

Speed. Launce! by mine honesty, welcome to Milan.

[Exit

Laun. Forswear not thyself, sweet youth; for I am not welcome. I reckon this always-that a man is never undone, till he be hanged; nor never welcome to a place, till some certain shot be paid, and the hostess say, welcome.

* On further knowledge.

Speed. Come on, you mad-cap, I'll to the alehouse with you presently; where, for one shot of fivepence, thou shalt have five thousand welcomes. But, sirrah, how did thy master part with Madam Julia ?

Laun. Marry, after they closed in earnest, they parted very fairly in jest.

Speed. But shall she marry him?

Laun. No.

Speed. How then? Shall he marry her?

Laun. No, neither.

Speed. What, are they broken ?

Laun. No, they are both as whole as a fish.

Speed. Why then, how stands the matter with them?

Laun. Marry, thus; when it stands well with him, it stands

well with her.

Speed. What an ass art thou? I understand thee not.

Laun. What a block art thou, that thou canst not? My staff understands me.

Speed. What thou say'st?

Laun. Ay, and what I do too: look thee, I'll but lean, and my staff understands me.

Speed. It stands under thee, indeed.

Laun. Why, stand under and understand is all one.

Speed. But tell me true, will't be a match?

Laun. Ask my dog: if he say, ay, it will; if he say, no, it will; if he shake his tail, and say nothing, it will.

Speed. The conclusion is then, that it will.

Laun. Thou shalt never get such a secret from me, but by a parable.

Speed. "Tis well that I get it so. But, Launce, how say'st thou, that my master is become a notable lover?

Laun. I never knew him otherwise.

Speed. Than how?

Laun. A notable lubber, as thou reportest him to be.

Speed. Why, thou whoreson ass, thou mistakest me.

Laun. Why, fool, I meant not thee; I meant thy master.
Speed. I tell thee, my master is become a hot lover.

Laun. Why I tell thee, I care not though he burn himself in love. If thou wilt go with me to the alehouse, so; if not, thou art an Hebrew, a Jew, and not worth the name of a Christian. Speed. Why?

Laun. Because thou hast not so much charity in thee, as to go to the alehouse with a Christian: Wilt thou go?

Speed. At thy service.

[Exeunt.

SCENE VI-The same. An Apartment in the Palace.

Enter PROTEUS.

Pro. To leave my Julia, shall I be forsworn;

To love fair Silvia, shall I be forsworn;

To wrong my friend, I shall be much forsworn,
And even that power, which gave me first my oath,
Provokes me to this threefold perjury.

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