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Acquaint the Queen of your most noble offer,
Who but to-day hammer'd on this design,
But durst not tempt a minister of honour,
Left she should be deny’d.
Pau. Tell her, Emilia,
I'll use that tongue I have ; if wit flow from't
As boldness from my bosom, let't not be doubted
I shall do good.
Emil. Now be you bleft for it!
I'll to the Queen: please you, come something nearer.
Goa. Madam, if't please the Queen to send the babe,
I know not what I shall incur to pass it,
Having no warrant.
Pau. You need not fear it, Sir ;
The child was prisoner to the womb, and is
By law and process of great nature thence
Free'd and enfranchis’d, not a party to
of the King, nor guilty of, If any be, the trespass of the Queen.
Goa. I do believe it.
Pau. Do not you fear; upon mine honour, I Will stand 'twixt you and darger.
[Exeunt. SCENE IV. The Palace. Enter Leontes, Antigonus, Lords and orber Artendants.
Leo. Nor night, nor day, no rest; it is but weakness
To bear the matter thus; meer weakness, if
The cause were not in being ; part o'th' cause
She, the adult'ress ; for the harlot-King
Is quite beyond mine arm; out of the blank
And level of my brain; plot-proof; but she
I can hook to me : say that she were gone,
Given to the fire, a moiety of my reft
Might come to me again. Who's there?
Enter an Attendant,
Atten. My Lord.
Leo. How does the boy ?
Atten. He took good rest
To-night, 'tis hop'd, his fickness is discharg‘d.
Leo. To see his nobleness!
Conceiving the dishonour of his mother,
He Araight declin'd, and droop'd, took it most deeply,
Fasten's and fix'd the shame on't in himself;
Threw off his spirit, his appetite, his neep,
And down-right languish'd. Leave me solely; go,'
See how he fares.Fie, fie, no thought of him;
The very thought of my revenges that way
Recoils upon me; in himself too mighty,
And in his parties, his alliance; let him
Be 'till a time may serve. For present vengeance,
Take it on her. Camillo and Polixenes
Laugh at me, make their pastime at my sorrow;
They should not laugh, if I could reach them, nor
Shall she within my power.
SCENE V. Enter Paulina with a child.
Lord. You must not enter.
Pau. Nay rather, good my Lords, be second to me:
Fear you his tyrannous passion more, alas,
Than the Queen's life a gracious innocent soul, .
More free than he is jealous.
Ant. That's enough.
Atten. Madam, he hath not fept to-night; commanded None should come at him.
Pau, Not so hot, good Sir,
I come to bring him Neep. 'Tis such as you
That creep like shadows by him, and do sigh
At each his needless heavings, such as you
Nourish the cause of his awaking. I
Do come with words, as medicinal, as true;
Honest as either, to purge him of that humour
That presses him from sleep.
Leo. What noise there, ho ?
Pau. No noise, my Lord, but needful conference,
About some gossips for your Highness.
Away with that audacious Lady. Antigonus,
I charg'd thee that the should not come about me.
I knew she would.
Ant. I told her so, my Lord,
On your displeasure's peril and on mine,
She should not visit you.
Leo. What? canst not rule her?
Pau. From all dishon-sty he can ; in this,
(Unless he take the course that you have done,
Commit me for committing honour,) trust me,
He shall not rule me.
Ant. Lo-you now, you hear,
When she will take the rein, I let her run,
But she'll not stumble.
Pau. Good my Liege, I come
And I beseech you hear me, who profess
My self your loyal servant, your phyfician,
Your most obedient counsellor: yet that dares
Less appear so, in comforting your evils,
Than such as most seem yours. I say, I come
From your good Queen.
Leo. Good Queen ?
Pau. Good Queen, my Lord,
Good Queen, I say good Queen;
And would by combat make her good, so were I
A man, the worst about you.
Leo. Force her hence,
Pau. Let him that makes but trifles of his eyes
First hand me : on mine own accord I'll off,
But first I'll do my errand. The good Queen,
For she is good, hath brought you forth a daughter,
Here 'tis : commends it to your blessing.
[Laying down the child
A mankind witch ! hence with her out o' door:
A most intelligencing bawd.
Pau. Not so,
I am as ignorant in that as you,
In so intit’ling me; and no less honest
Than you are mad; which is enough, I'll warrant,
As this world goes, to pass for honest.
Leo. Traytors !
Will you not push her out? give her the bastard. [To Ant.
Thou dotard, thou art woman-tyr'd; unroosted
By thy dame Partlet here. Take up the bastard,
Take't up, I say, give't to thy croan,
Pau. For ever
Unvenerable be thy hands, if thou
Tak’ft up the Princess, by that forced baseness
Which he has put upon't!
Leo. He dreads his wife.
Pau. So I would you did : then 'twere past all doubę You'd call your children yours.
Leo. A nest of traytors !
Ant. I am none by this good light.
Pau. Nor I; nor any
But one that's here, and that's himself. For he,
The facred honour of himself, his Queen's,
His hopeful son's, his babe's, betrays to slander,
Whose sting is sharper than the sword's; and will not
(For as the cafe now stands, it is a curse
He cannot be compellid to't) once remove
The root of his opinion, which is rotten,
As ever oak or stone was found.
Leo. A callat
Of boundless tongue, who late hath beat her husband,
And now baits me! This brat is none of mine,
It is the issue of Polixenes.
Hence with it, and together with the dam,
Commit them to the fire.
Pau. It is yours ;
And, might we lay th' old proverb to your charge,
So like you, 'tis the worse. Behold, my Lords,
Altho' the print be little, the whole matter
And copy of the father ; eye, nose, lip,
The trick of's frown, his forehead, nay, the valleys,
The dimples of his chin, and cheek, his smiles,
The very mould and frame of hand, nail, finger.
And thou, good Goddess Nature, which hast made it
So like to him that got it, if thou hast
The ordering of the mind too, 'mongst all colours
No yellow in't ! left the suspect, as he does,
Her children not her husband's.
Leo. A gross hag!
And, lozel, thou art worthy to be hang'd,
That wilt not stay her tongue.
Ant. Hang all the husbands
That cannot do that feat, you'll leave your self
Hardly one subject.
Leo. Once more take her hence.
Pau. A most unworthy and unnatural Lord Can do no more
Leo. I'll ha' thee burnt.
Pau, I care not ;
It is an heretick that makes the fire,
Not lhe phich burns in't. I'll not call you týrant,
But this most cruel usage of your Queen
(Not able to produe more accusation
Than your own week-hing’d fancy) something favours
Of tyranny, and will ignoble make you,
Yea, scandalous to all the world,
Leo. On your allegiance,
Out of the chamber with her. Were I a tyrant,
Where were her life? The durft not call me so,
If she did know me one. Away with her !
Pau. I pray you, do not puth me, I'll be gone.
Look to your babe, my Lord, 'tis yours; Jove send her
A better guiding spirit ! What need these hands ?
You that are thus so tender o'er his follies,
Will never do him good, not one of you.
So, fo, farewel, we are gone,
Leo. Thou, traytor, haft set on thy wife to this.
My child ? away with’t. Even thou that haft
A heart so tender o'er it, take it hence,
And see it instantly consum'd with fire;
Even thou, and none but thou. Take it up Straight:
Within this hour bring me word 'tis done,
And by good testimony, or I'll seize
Thy life, with all that's thine: if thou refuse,
And wilt encounter with my wrath, say so ;
The bastard-brains with these my proper hands
Shall I dash out : go take it to the fire,
For thou sett’d'it on thy wife.
Ant. I did not, Sir: