Abbildungen der Seite



The Court, before Leonato's House.

Enter Leonato and ANTONIO.

Ant. If you go on thus, you will kill yourself;
And 'tis not wisdom, thus to second griet
Against yourself.

Leon. I pray thee, cease thy counsel ;
Nor let no comforter delight mine ear,
But such a one, whose wrongs do suit with mine.
Bring me a father, that so lov'd his child,
Whose joy of her is overwbelm'd like mine,
And bid him speak of patience;-
No, no; 'tis all men's office to speak patience
To those, that wring under the load of sorrow;
But no man's virtue, nor sufficiency,
To be so moral, when he shall endure
The like himself: therefore give me no counsel.

Ant. Therein do men from children nothing differ.

Leon. I pray thee, peace; I will be flesh and blood; For there was never yet philosopher, That could endure the tooth-ache patiently; However they have writ the style of gods, And make a pish at chance and sufferance.

Ant. Yet bend not all the harm upon yourself ; Make those, that do offend you, suffer too. Leon. There thou speak'st reason : nay, I will do

so; My soul doth tell me, Hero is belied ;

And that shall Claudio know, so shall the prince, And all of them, that thus dishonour her.

Ant. Here comes the prince, and Claudio, hastily.

Enter Don Pedro and CLAUDIO. Pedro. Good den, good den. Claud. Good day to both of you. Leon. Hear you, my lordsPedro. We have some haste, Leonato. Leon. Some haste, my lord !-well, fare you well,

my lord :

Are you so hasty now!-well, all is one.

Pedro. Nay, do not quarrel with us, good old man.

Ant. If he could right himself with quarrelling,
Some of us would lie low.
Claud. Who wrongs

him? Leon. Marry, thou dost wrong me, thou dissem

bler, thou !
Nay, never lay thy hand upon thy sword,
I fear thee not.

Claud. Marry, beshrew my hand,
If it should give your age such cause of fear!
In faith, my hand meant nothing to my sword.

Leon. Tush, tush, man, never feer and jest at me!
I speak not like a dotard, nor a fool,
As, under privilege of age, to brag
What I have done being young, or what would do,
Were I not old: Know, Claudio, to thy head,
Thou hast so wrong'd my innocent child, and me,
That I am forc'd to lay my reverence by ;
And, with grey hairs, and bruise of many days,
Do challenge thee to trial of a man:
I say, thou hast belied my innocent child.

Pedro. You say not right, old man.

Leon. My lord, my lord,
I'll prove it on his body, if he dare;
Despite his nice fence, and his active practice,
His May of youth, and bloom of lusty hood.

Claud, Away, I will not have to do with you!
Leon. Canst thou so daff me?

Ant. Let him answer me:
Come, follow me, boy; come, boy, follow me;
Sir boy, I'll whip you from your foining fence;
Nay, as I am a gentleman, I will !

Leon. Brother

Ant. Boys, apes, braggarts, jacks, milksops !
That dare as well answer a man, indeed,
As I dare take a serpent by the tongue !

Leon. Brother Anthony--
Ant. Hold your content; What, man! I know

them, yea,
And what they weigh, even to the utmost scruple;
Scambling, outfacing, fashion-mong'ring boys,
That lie, and cog, and fout, deprave and slander,
And speak off half a dozen dangerous words,
How they might hurt their enemies, if they durst,
And this is all.

Leon. But, brother Anthony

Ant. Come, 'tis no matter; Do not you meddle, let me deal in this. Pedro. Gentlemen both, we will not wake your pa

tience. My heart is sorry for

your daughter's death; But, on my honour, she was charg'd with nothing But what was true, and very full of proof.

Leon. My lord, my lord
Pedro. I will not hear you.

Leon. No?
Brother, away ; I will be heard !

Ant. And shall,
Or some of us will smart for it.

(Exeunt LEONATO and ANTONIO, Pedro. See, see, Here comes the man, we went to seek !

Claud. Now, Signior,
What news?

[ocr errors]


Bened. Good day, my lord.

Pedro. Welcome, Signior!
You are almost come to part almost a fray.

Claud. We had like to have had our two noses snapped off, with two old men without teeth.

Pedro. Leonato and his brother: What think'st thou? Had we fought, I doubt, we should have been too young for them.

Bened. In a false quarrel, there is no true valour. I came to seek you both.

Claud. We have been up and down to seek thee; for we are high proof melancholy, and would fain have it beaten away: Wilt thou use thy wit?

Bened. It is in my scabbard ; shall I draw it!

Pedro. As I am an honest man, he looks pale!Art thou sick, or angry?

Claud. What! courage, man! What, though care killed a cat, thou hast mettle enough in thee to kill

Bened. Sir, I shall meet your wit in the career, if you charge it against me; I pray you, chuse another subject.

Pedro. By this light, he changes more and more!
I think, he be angry, indeed !

Claud. If he be, he knows how to turn his girdle.
Bened. Shall I speak a word in your ear?
Claud. Heaven bless me from a challenge!

Bened. You are a villain! I jest not-I will make it good, how you dare, with what you dare, and when you dare :-Do me right, or I will protest your cowardice. You have killed a sweet lady, and her death shall fall heavy on you! Let me hear from you.

Claud. Well, I will meet you, so I may have good cheer.

Pedro. What, a feast, a feast !

Claud. l'faith, I thank him, he hath bid me to a calve's head; the which, if I do not carve most curiously, say my knife's naught,

Bened. Sir, your wit ambles well; it goes easily.

Pedro. But when shall we set the savage bull's horns on the sensible Benedick's head?

Claud. Yea, and text underneath,—Here dwells Benedick, the married man? Bened. Fare you well, boy! you know


mindI will leave you now to your humour: you break jests, as braggarts do their blades, which, Heaven be thanked, hurt not!—My lord, for your many courtesies, I thank you-I must discontinue your company: your brother, the bastard, is fled from Messina ; you have, among you, killed a sweet and innocent lady: For my Lord Lackbeard there, he and I shall meet, and till then, peace be with him! Let me hear from you.

[Erit. Pedro. He is in earnest.

Claud. In most profound earnest; and, I'll warrant you, for the love of Beatrice !

Pedro. And hath challenged thee?
Claud. Most sincerely!

Pedro. What a pretty thing man is, when he goes in his doublet and hose, and leaves off his wit !- Did he not say, my brother was fled?


Seacoal, OATCAKE, and the Watch. Dogb. Come you, sir! if justice cannot tame you, she shall ne'er weigh more reasons in her balance :nay, and you be a cursing hypocrite once, you must be looked to.

Pedro. How now, two of my brother's men bound ! Borachio one !

Claud. Hearken after their offence, my lord.
Pedro. Officers, what offence have these men done?

Dogb. Marry, sir, they have committed false report; moreover, they have spoken untruihs; 'secondarily, they are slanders:- sixth and lastly, they have

« ZurückWeiter »