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Ang. What can you vouch against him, seignoir Lucio? Is this the man that you did tell us of?

Lucio. 'Tis he, my lord. Come hither, goodman baldpate: do you know me?

Duke. I remember you, sir, by the sound of your voice: I met you at the prison in the absence of the duke.

Lucio. O, did you so? And do you remember what you said of the duke?

Duke. Most notedly, sir.

Lucio. Do you so, sir? And was the duke a flesh-monger, a fool, and a coward, as you then reported him to be?

Duke. You must, sir, change persons with me, ere you make that my report: you, indeed, spoke so of him; and much more, much worse.

Lucio. O thou damnable fellow! Did not I pluck thee by the nose, for thy speeches?

Duke. I protest, I love the duke, as I love myself.

Ang. Hark! how the villain would close now, after his treasonable abuses.

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Escal. Such a fellow is not to be talked withal: - away with him to prison: Where is the provost ?-Away with him to prison; lay bolts enough upon him:-Let him speak no more:-Away with those giglots too, and with the other confederate companion.

[The Provost lays hands on the Duke. Duke. Stay, sir; stay a while.

Ang. What! resists he? Help him, Lucio.

Lucio. Come, sir; come, sir; come, sir; foh, sir; why, you bald-pated, lying rascal! You must be hooded, must you? Show your knave's visage, with a pox to you! show your sheep-biting face, and be hanged an hour! Wilt not off? [Pulls off the Friar's hood, and discovers the Duke. Duke. Thou art the first knave that e'er made a duke. First, provost, let me bail these gentle three:Sneak not away, sir; [To LUCIO.] for the friar and you Must have a word anon:- lay hold on him.

Lucio. This may prove worse than hanging.

Duke. What you have spoke, I pardon; sit you down.


We'll borrow place of him:- sir, by your leave:

Hast thou or word, or wit, or impudence,
That yet can do thee office? If thou hast,
Rely upon it till my tale be heard,
And hold no longer out.


O my dread lord,

I should be guiltier than my guiltiness,


To think I can be undiscernible,

When I perceive, your grace, like power divine,
Hath looked upon my passes: Then, good prince,
No longer session hold upon my shame,

But let my trial be mine own confession;
Immediate sentence then, and sequent death,
Is all the grace I beg.


Come hither, Mariana; Say, wast thou e'er contracted to this woman ?

Ang. I was, my lord.

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Duke. Go take her hence, and marry her instantly.Do you the office, friar; which consummate, Return him here again:-go with him, provost.

[Exeunt ANGELO, MARIANA, PETER, and Provost. Escal. My lord, I am more amazed at his dishonor, Than at the strangeness of it.


Come hither, Isabel:
Your friar is now your prince: as I was then
Advértising, and holy to your business,

Not changing heart with habit, I am still
Attorneyed at your service.


O, give me pardon,

That I, your vassal, have employed and pained
Your unknown sovereignty.


You are pardoned, Isabel: And now, dear maid, be you as free to us. Your brother's death, I know, sits at your heart; And you may marvel why I obscured myself, Laboring to save his life; and would not rather Make rash remonstrance of my hidden power, Than let him so be lost: 0, most kind maid,

It was the swift celerity of his death,

Which I did think with slower foot came on,
That brained my purpose: but peace be with him!
That life is better life, past fearing death,

Than that which lives to fear: make it your comfort,
So happy is your brother.

Re-enter ANGELO, MARIANA, PETER, and Provost. Isab.

I do, my lord.

Duke. For this new-married man, approaching here, Whose salt imagination yet hath wronged

Your well-defended honor, you must pardon

For Mariana's sake; but as he adjudged your brother,

VOL. I.-21

(Being criminal, in double violation
Of sacred chastity, and of promise-breach
Thereon dependent for your brother's life,)
The very mercy of the law cries out

Most audible, even from his proper tongue,
An Angelo for Claudio, death for death.

Haste still pays haste, and leisure answers leisure;
Like doth quit like, and Measure still for Measure.
Then, Angelo, thy fault's thus manifested;

Which, though thou would'st deny, denies thee vantage:
We do condemn thee to the very block

Where Claudio stooped to death, and with like haste; — Away with him.


O, my most gracious lord,
I hope you will not mock me with a husband!

Duke. It is your husband mocked you with a husband: Consenting to the safeguard of your honor,

I thought your marriage fit; else imputation,
For that he knew you, might reproach your life,
And choke your good to come; for his possessions,
Although by confiscation they are ours,

We do instate and widow you withal,

To buy you a better husband.


O, my dear lord,
I crave no other, nor no better man.
Duke. Never crave him; we are definitive.
Mari. Gentle, my liege,-



You do but lose your labor; Away with him to death. Now, sir, [To LUCIO.] to you.

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Mari. O, my good lord!-Sweet Isabel, take my part; Lend me your knees, and, all my life to come, I'll lend you all my life to do you service.

Duke. Against all sense you do impórtune her
Should she kneel down, in mercy of this fact,
Her brother's ghost his paved bed would break,
And take her hence in horror.

Sweet Isabel, do yet but kneel by me;
Hold up your hands; say nothing; I'll speak all.
They say, best men are moulded out of faults;
And, for the most, become much more the better
For being a little bad: so may my husband.
O, Isabel! will you not lend a knee?

Duke. He dies for Claudio's death.


Most bounteous sir, [Kneeling.

Look, if it please you, on this man condemned,
As if my brother lived: I partly think,
A due sincerity governed his deeds,
Till he did look on me: since it is so,
Let him not die: My brother had but justice,
In that he did the thing for which he died:
For Angelo,

His act did not o'ertake his bad intent;

And must be buried but as an intent

That perished by the way: thoughts are no subjects; Intents but merely thoughts.


Merely, my lord.
Duke. Your suit's unprofitable; stand up, I say.-
I have bethought me of another fault:

Provost, how came it

At an unusual hour?


Claudio was beheaded

It was commanded so.

Duke. Had you a special warrant for the deed? Prov. No, my good lord; it was by private message. Duke. For which I do discharge you of your office: Give up your keys.


Pardon me, noble lord:
I thought it was a fault, but knew it not;
Yet did repent me, after more advice:
For testimony whereof, one in the prison
That should by private order else have died,
I have reserved alive.

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Prov. His name is Barnardine.

Duke. I would thou had'st done so by Claudio.
Go, fetch him hither; let me look upon him. [Exit Provost.
Escal. I am sorry, one so learned and so wise

As you, lord Angelo, have still appeared,
Should slip so grossly, both in the heat of blood,
And lack of tempered judgment afterward.


Ang. I am sorry, that such sorrow I
And so deep sticks it in my penitent heart,
That I crave death more willingly than mercy;
'Tis my deserving, and I do entreat it.

Re-enter Provost, BARNARDINE, CLAUDIO, and JULIET.
Duke. Which is that Barnardine?


This, my lord.

Duke. There was a friar told me of this man:-
Sirrah, thou art said to have a stubborn soul,
That apprehends no further than this world,

And squar'st thy life according. Thou'rt condemned;
But, for those earthly faults, I quit them all;
And pray thee, take this mercy to provide
For better times to come: -friar, advise him;

I leave him to your hand. What muffled fellow's that?
Prov. This is another prisoner, that I saved,

That should have died when Claudio lost his head;
As like almost to Claudio as himself. [Unmuffles CLAUDIO.
Duke. If he be like your brother, [To ISABELLA,] for
his sake

Is he pardoned; and, for your lovely sake,
Give me your hand, and say you will be mine.
He is my brother too; but fitter time for that.
By this, lord Angelo perceives he's safe;
Methinks I see a quickening in his eye:-
Well, Angelo, your evil quits you well:

Look that you love your wife; her worth, worth yours.-
I find an apt remission in myself:

And yet here's one in place I cannot pardon;

You, sirrah, [To LUCIO] that knew me for a fool, a coward, One all of luxury, an ass, a madman;

Wherein have I so deserved of you,

That you extol me thus?

Lucio. 'Faith, my lord, I spoke it but according to the trick: If you will hang me for it, you may, but I had rather it would please you I might be whipped.

Duke. Whipped first, sir, and hanged after.-
Proclaim it, provost, round about the city;
If any woman's wronged by this lewd fellow,
(As I have heard him swear himself, there's one
Whom he begot with child,) let her appear,
And he shall marry her: the nuptial finished,
Let him be whipped and hanged.

Lucio. I beseech your highness, do not marry me to a whore! Your highness said even now, I made you a duke; good my lord, do not recompense me in making me a cuckold.

Duke. Upon mine honor, thou shalt marry her.

Thy slanders I forgive; and therewithal

Remit thy other forfeits. Take him to prison:
And see our pleasure herein executed.

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