Abbildungen der Seite
[ocr errors]

Egregious murderer, thief, any thing
That's due to all the villains past, in being,
To come !-0, give me cord, or knife, or poison,
Some upright justicer! Thou, king, send out
For torturers ingenious: it is I
That all the abhorrèd things o' the earth amend,
By being worse than they. I am Posthumus,
That kill'd thy daughter :-villain-like, I lie ;
That caus'd a lesser villain than myself,
d sacrilegious thief, to do’t :—the temple
Of virtue was she ; yea, and she herself.
Spit, and throw stones, cast mire upon me, set
The dogs o' the street to bay me: every villain
Be callid Posthumus Leonatus; and
Be villany less than 'twas - 0 Imogen!
My queen, my life, my wife! O Imogen,
Imogen, Imogen!

Peace, my lord; hear, hear-
Post.. Shall's have a play of this? Thou scornful page,
There lie thy part.

[Striking her; she falls. Pis.

O, gentlemen, help!
Mine, and your mistress !-0, my lord Posthumus!
You ne'er kill'd Imnogen till now.-Help, help :-
Mine honour'd lady!

Does the world go round?
Post. How come these staggers on me?

Wake, my mistress!
Cym. If this be so, the gods do mean to strike me
To death with mortal joy.

How fares mistress?
Imo. O, get thee from my sight ;
Thou gav'st me poison : dangerous fellow, hence !
Breathe not where princes are.

The tune of Imogen!
Pis. Lady,
The gods throw stones of sulphur on me, if
That box I gave you was not thought by me
A precious thing: I had it from the queen.

Cym. New matter still ?

It poison’d me.

O gods !
I left out one thing which the queen confess'd,
Which must approve thee honest : “If Pisanio
Have," said she, "given his mistress that confection


Which I gave him for cordial, she is serv'd
As I would serve a rat.”

What's this, Cornelius?
Cor. The queen, Sir, very oft importun'd me
To temper poisons for her; still pretending
The satisfaction of her knowledge only
In killing creatures vile, as cats and dogs,
Of no esteem: I, dreading that her purpose
Was of more danger, did compound for her
A certain stuff, which, being ta'en, would cease
The present power of life ; but, in short time,
All offices of nature should again
Do their due functions.—Have you ta'en of it?

Imo. Most like I did, for I was dead.

My boys,
There was our error.

This is, sure, Fidele.
Imo. Why did you throw your wedded lady from you ?
Think that you are upon a rock; and now
Throw me again.

[Embracing kim Post.

Hang there like fruit, my soul,
Till the tree die !

How now, my flesh, my child !
What, mak'st thou me a dullard in this act ?
Wilt thou not speak to me?
Imo. [Kneeling)

Your blessing, Sir.
Bel. [To Gui. and Arv.] Though you did love this youth, I

blame ye not ; You had a motive for 't. Сут.

My tears that fall,
Prove holy water on thee! Imogen,
Thy mother's dead.

I am sorry for’t, my lord.
Cym. O, she was naught; and 'long of her it was,
That we meet here so strangely: but her son
Is gone, we know not how, nor where.

My lord,
Now fear is from me, I 'll speak troth. Lord Cloten,
Upon my lady's missing, came to me
With his sword drawn; foam'd at the mouth, and swore,
If I discover'd not which way she was gone,
It was my instant death. By accident,
I had a feigned letter of my master's
Then in my pocket; which directed him

To seek her on the mountains near to Milford ;
Where, in a frenzy, in my master's garments,
Which he enforc'd from me, away

he posts
With unchaste purpose, and with oath to violate
My lady's honour: what became of him,
I farther know not.

Let me end the story :
I slew him there.
Сут. .

Marry, the gods forfend!
I would not thy good deeds should from my lips
Pluck a hard sentence: prythee, valiant youth,
Deny't again.

I have spoke it, and I did it.
Cym. He was a prince.

Gui. A most uncivil one: the wrongs he did me
Were nothing prince-like; for he did provoke me
With language that would make me spurn the sea,
If it could so roar to me : I cut off's head;
And am right glad he is not standing here
To tell this tale of mine.

I am sorry for thee:
By thine own tongue thou art condemn'd, and must
Endure our law: thou art dead.

That headless man
I thought had been my lord.
Сут. .

Bind the offender,
And take him from our presence.

Stay, sir king
This man is better than the man he slew,
As well descended as thyself; and hath
More of thee merited, than a band of Clotens
Had ever scar for.—[To the Guard.] Let his arms alone;
They were not born for bondage.

Why, old soldier,
Wilt thou undo the worth thou art unpaid for,
By tasting of our wrath ? How of descent
As good as we?

In that he spake too far.
Cym. And thou shalt die for 't.

We will die all three
But I will prove that two on's are as good
As I have given out him.—My sons, I must,
For mine own part, unfold a dangerous speech,
Though, haply, well for you.


Your danger's ours.
Gui. And our good his.

Have at it, then :-
By leave,--thou hadst, great king, a subject who
Was call'd Belarius.

What of him? he is
A banish'd traitor.

He it is that hath
Assum'd this age : indeed, a banish'd man;
I know not how a traitor.
Сут. .

Take him hence :
The whole world shall not save him.

Not too hot:
First pay me for the nursing of thy sons;
And let it be confiscate all, so soon
As I have receiv'd it.
Cym. .

Nursing of my sons ! Bel. I am too blunt and saucy: here's my knee: Ere I arise, I will prefer my sons ; Then, spare not the old father. Mighty Sir, These two young gentlemen, that call me father, And think they are my sons, none of mine; They are the issue of your loins, my liege, And blood of your begetting. Су т. .

How! my issue ! Bel. So sure as you your father's. I, old Morgan, Am that Belarius whom you sometime banish'd : Your pleasure was my mere offence, my punishment Itself, and all my treason; that I suffer'd, Was all the harm I did. These gentle princes (For such and so they are) these twenty years Have I train'd up: those arts they have, as I Could put into them; my breeding was, Sir, as Your highness knows. Their nurse, Euriphile, Whom for the theft I wedded, stole these children Upon my banishment: I mov'd her to 't ; Having receiv'd the punishment before, For that which I did then : beaten for loyalty, Excited me to treason: their dear loss, The more of you 'twas felt, the more it shap'd Unto my end of stealing them. But, gracious Sir, Here are your sons again; and I must lose Two of the sweet'st companions in the world :The benediction of these covering heavens

Fall on their heads like dew! for they are worthy
To inlay heaven with stars.

Thou weep’st, and speak'st
The service, that you three have done, is more
Unlike than this thou tell’st. I lost my children:
If these be they, I know not how to wish
A pair of worthier sons.

Be pleas'd a while.-
This gentleman, whom I call Polydore,
Most worthy prince, as yours, is true Guiderius :
This gentleman, my Cadwal, Arviragus,
Your younger princely son; he, Sir, was lapp'd
In a most curious mantle, wrought by the hand
Of his queen mother, which, for more probation,
I can with ease produce.

Guiderius had
Upon his neck a mole, a sanguine star;
It was a mark of wonder,

This is he;
Who hath upon him still that natural stamp:
It was wise nature's end in the donation,
To be his evidence now.

O, what, am I
A mother to the birth of three ? Ne'er mother
Rejoic'd deliverance more.—Bless'd pray you be,
That, after this strange starting from your orbs,
You may reign in them now !-O Imogen,
Thou hast lost by this a kingdom.

No, my lord;
I have got two worlds by't.--O my gentle brothers,
Have we thus met? O, never say hereafter,
But I am truest speaker: you call’d me brother,
When I was but your sister; I you brothers,
When you were so indeed.


e'er meet?
Arv. Ay, my good lord.

And at first meeting lov'd;
Continued so, until we thought he died.

Cor. By the queen's dram she swallow'd.

O rare instinct
When shall I hear all through? This fierce abridgment
Hath to it circumstantial branches, which
Distinction should be rich in.—Where? how liv'd you?
And when came you to serve our Roman captive?

« ZurückWeiter »