« PreviousContinue »
LEONTES, King of Sicilia.
HERMIONE, Queen to Leontes.
attending the Queen.
Lords, Ladies, and Attendants; satyrs for a Dance ;
Shepherds, Shepherdesses, Guards, &c.
SCENE, sometimes in Sicilia, sometimes in Bohemia.
SCENE I. Sicilia. An Antechamber in Leontes' Palace.
. Enter CAMILLO and ARCHIDAMUS. Archidamus. If you shall chance, Camillo, to visit Bohemia, on the like occasion whereon my services are now on foot, you shall see, as I have said, great difference betwixt our Bohemia and your Sicilia,
Cam. I think, this coming summer, the king of Sicilia means to pay Bohemia the visitation which he justly owes him.
Arch. Wherein our entertainment shall shame us, we will be justified in our loves; for, indeed,
Cam. Beseech you,
Arch. Verily, I speak it in the freedom of my knowledge; we cannot with such magnificence-in so rare-I know not what to say. We will give you sleepy drinks; that your senses, unintelligent of our insufficience, may, though they cannot praise us, as little accuse us.
Cam. You pay a great deal too dear for what's given freely.
Arch. Believe me, I speak as my understanding instructs me, and as mine honesty puts it to utterance.
Cam. Sicilia cannot show himself over-kind to Bohemia. They were trained together in their childhoods; and there rooted betwixt them then such an affection, which cannot choose but branch now. Since their more mature dignities and royal necessities made separation of their society, their encounters, though not personal, have been royally attorneyed, with interchange of gifts, letters, loving embassies; that they have seemed to be together, though absent; shook hands, as over a vast; and embraced, as it were, from the ends of opposed winds. The Heavens continue their loves ! Arch. I think there is not in the world either malice, or matter, to alter it. You have an unspeakable comfort of your young prince Mamillius; it is a gentleman of the greatest promise, that ever came into my note.
Cam. I very well agree with you in the hopes of him. It is a gallant child; one that, indeed, physics the subject, makes old hearts fresh. They that went on crutches ere he was born, desire yet their life, to see him a man.
Arch. Would they else be content to die?
Cam. Yes; if there were no other excuse why they should desire to live.
Arch. If the king had no son, they would desire to live on crutches till he had one.
SCENE II. The same. A Room of State in the Palace.
CAMILLO, and Attendants.
Stay your thanks awhile ;
Sir, that's to-morrow.
Leon. We are tougher, brother,
No longer stay.
Very sooth, to-morrow.
Press me not, 'beseech you, so. There is no tongue that moves, none, none i'the world, So soon as yours, could win me; so it should now,
To tire* put forinds at bence : *
Were there necessity in your request, although
Tongue-tied, our queen ? Speak you.
Well said, Hermione. Her. To tell he longs to see his son, were strong: But let him say so then, and let him go; But let him swear so, and he shall not stay; We'll thwack him hence with distaffs. — Yet of your royal presence [To Pol.] I'll adventure The borrow of a week. When at Bohemia You take my lord, I'll give him my commission, To let him there a month, behind the gest Prefixed for his parting; yet, good deed, Leontes, I love thee not a jar o' the clock behind What lady she her lord.—You'll stay? Pol.
. No, madam. Her. Nay, but you will ? Pol.
I may not, verily. . Her. Verily! You put me off with limber vows; but I, Though you would seek to unsphere the stars with oaths, Should yet say, Sir, no going. Verily, You shall not go; a lady's verily is As potent as a lord's. Will you go yet? Force me to keep you as a prisoner, Not like a guest: so you shall pay your fees, When you depart, and save your thanks. How say you ? My prisoner, or my guest ? By your dread verily, One of them you shall be. Pol.
Your guest, then, madam :
Not your jailer, then,
Of my lord's tricks, and yours, when you were boys;
We were, fair queen,
Her. Was not my lord the verier wag o' the two?
Pol. We were as twinned lambs, that did frisk i'the sun,
Her. By this we gather,
O, my most sacred lady,
Grace to boot!
Is he won yet?
At my request he would not.
Never ? Leon.
Never, but once. Her. What? have I twice said well? When was't before? I pr’ythee, tell me. Cram us with praise, and make us As fat as tame things; one good deed dying tongueless, Slaughters a thousand, waiting upon that. Our praises are our wages : you may ride us, With one soft kiss, a thousand furlongs, ere With spur we heat an acre. But to the goal.My last good was, to entreat his stay; What was my first? It has an elder sister, i