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I am, sir,
The soldier that did company these three
In poor beseeming ; 'twas a fitment for
The purpose I then followd.
That I was he,
Speak, Iachimo: I had you down and might
Have made you finish.
Iach. [Kneeling] I am down again :
But now my heavy conscience sinks my knee,
As then your force did. Take that life, beseech
Which I so often owe : but your ring first;
And here the bracelet of the truest princess
That ever swore her faith.
Kneel not to me :
The power that I have on you is to spare you ;
The malice towards you to forgive you : live,
And deal with others better.
We'll learn our freeness of a son-in-law;
Pardon 's the word to all.
You holp us, sir,
As you did mean indeed to be our brother;
Joy'd are we that you are.
Post. Your servant, princes. Good my lord
Call forth your soothsayer : as I slept, methought
Great Jupiter, upon his eagle back'd,
Appear'd to me, with other spritely shows
Of mine own kindred: when I waked, I found
This label on my bosom ; whose containing
Is so from sense in hardness, that I can
Make no collection of it: let him show
409. fitment, proper equip- 430. containing, contents.
His skill in the construction.
Sooth. Here, my good lord.
Read, and declare the meaning. Sooth. [Reads] “When as a lion's whelp shall, to himself unknown, without seeking find, and be embraced by a piece of tender air; and when from a stately cedar shall be lopped branches, which, being dead many years, shall after revive, be jointed to the old stock, and freshly grow; 440 then shall Posthumus end his miseries, Britain be fortunate and flourish in peace and plenty.' Thou, Leonatus, art the lion's whelp; The fit and apt construction of thy name, Being Leo-natus, doth import so much. [To Cymbeline] The piece of tender air, thy
Which we call “mollis aer;' and 'mollis aer'
We term it mulier :' which 'mulier' I divine
Is this most constant wife; who, even now,
Answering the letter of the oracle,
Unknown to you, unsought, were clipp'd about
With this most tender air.
This hath some seeming.
Sooth. The lofty cedar, royal Cymbeline,
Personates thee: and thy lopp'd branches point
Thy two sons forth; who, by Belarius stol'n,
For many years thought dead, are now revived,
To the majestic cedar join'd, whose issue
Promises Britain peace and plenty.
My peace we will begin. And, Caius Lucius,
Although the victor, we submit to Cæsar,
And to the Roman empire; promising
To pay our wonted tribute, from the which
We were dissuaded by our wicked queen ;
Whom heavens, in justice, both on her and hers,
Have laid most heavy hand.
Sooth. The fingers of the powers above do tune
The harmony of this peace. The vision
Which I made known to Lucius, ere the stroke
Of this yet scarce-cold battle, at this instant
Is full accoinplish'd; for the Roman eagle,
From south to west on wing soaring aloft,
Lessen'd herself, and in the beams o' the sun
So vanish’d: which foreshow'd our princely eagle,
The imperial Cæsar, should again unite
His favour with the radiant Cymbeline,
Which shines here in the west.
Laud we the gods;
And let our crooked smokes climb to their nostrils
From our blest altars. Publish we this peace
To all our subjects. Set we forward : let
A Roman and a British ensign wave
Friendly together : so through Lud's-town march:
And in the temple of great Jupiter
Our peace we'll ratify; seal it with feasts.
Set on there ! Never was a war did cease,
Ere bloody hands were wash'd, with such a peace.
LEONTES, king of Sicilia.
MAMILLIus, young prince of Sicilia.
Four Lords of Sicilia
Polixenes, king of Bohemia.
FLORIZEL, prince of Bohemia.
ARCHIDAMUS, a Lord of Bohemia.
Old Shepherd, reputed father of Perdita.
Clown, his son.
AUTOLYCUS, a rogue.
HERMIONE, queen to Leontes.
PERDITA, daughter to Leontes and Hermione,
PAULINA, wife to Antigonus.
EMILIA, a lady attending on Hermione.
Other Lords and Gentlemen, Ladies, Officers, and Servants,
Shepherds, and Shepherdesses.
Time, as Chorus.
SCENE: Sicilia, and Bohemia.
The time rises eight days represented on the stage, with intervals. Day 1. I. 1., 2 2. II. I.
An interval of twenty-three days.
3. II. 2., 3. ; III. 1.
4. III. 2.
An interval. Antigonus' voyage.
An interval (IV. 1.) of sixteen years. 6. IV. 2., 3.
An interval. Journey to Sicilia. 8. V. 1.-3.