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Solemn Music. Enter, as an apparition, Sicilius
Leonatus, father to Posthumus, an old man, attired like a warrior; leading in his hand an ancient Matron, his wife, and mother to PostHUMUS, with music before them. Then, after other music, follow the two young LEONATI, brothers to Posthumus, with wounds, as they died in the wars. They circle PosthumUS
round, as he lies sleeping.
Thy spite on mortal flies :
Rates and revenges.
Whose face I never saw ?
Attending Nature's law.
Thou orphans' father art)
From this earth-vexing smart.
But took me in my throes;
A thing of pity!
Moulded the stuff so fair,
As great Sicilius' heir.
In Britain where was he
Or fruitful object be
Could deem his dignity?
To be exiled, and thrown
Slight thing of Italy,
With needless jealousy ;
O'the other's villany? 2nd Bro. For this, from stiller seats we came,
Our parents, and us twain,
Fell bravely, and were slain;
With honour to maintain.
To Cymbeline performed :
Then, Jupiter, thou king of gods,
Why hast thou thus adjourned
Being all to dolours turned ?
No longer exercise,
And potent injuries :
Take off his miseries.
Or we poor ghosts will cry
Against thy deity.
And from thy justice fly.
upon an eagle ; he throws a thunder-bolt. The
Ghosts fall on their knees.
Offend our hearing; hush!-How dare you, ghosts, Accuse the thunderer, whose bolt you know,
Sky-planted, batters all rebelling coasts? Poor shadows of Elysium, hence; and rest
Upon your never-withering banks of flowers: Be not with mortal accidents oppressed;
No care of yours it is; you know t'is ours. Whom best I love, I cross; to make my gift,
The more delayed, delighted. Be content; Your low-laid son our godhead will uplift:
His comforts thrive, his trials well are spent. Our Jovial star reigned at his birth, and in
Our temple was he married.-Rise, and fade! He shall be lord of lady Imogen,
And happier much by his affliction made. This tablet lay upon his breast; wherein
Our pleasure his full fortune doth confine; And so, away: no farther with your din
Express impatience, lest you stir up mine.Mount, eagle, to my palace crystalline. [ Ascends.
Sici. He came in thunder : his celestial breath Was sulphurous to smell: the holy eagle Stooped, as to foot us; his ascension is More sweet than our blessed fields : his royal bird i Prunes the immortal wing, and cloys his beak, As when his god is pleased.
All. Thanks, Jupiter!
Sici. The marble pavement closes, he is entered His radiant roof. Away! and, to be blessed, Let us with care perform his great behest.
sire, and begot
Post. I am merrier to die than thou art to live. | He shall be happy that can find him, if
Gaol. Indeed, sir, he that sleeps feels not the Our grace can make him so. tooth-ache: but a man that were to sleep your Bel. I never saw sleep, and a hangman to help him to bed, I think Such noble fury in so poor a thing; he would change places with his officer ; for, look Such precious deeds in one that promised nought you, sir, you know not which way you shall go. But beggary and poor looks. Post. Yes, indeed do I, fellow.
Cym. No tidings of him? Gaol. Your death has eyes in 's head then; I Pisa. He hath been searched among the dead have not seen him so pictured: you must either
and living, be directed by some that take upon them to know; But no trace of him. or take upon yourself that which I am sure you Cym. To my grief, I am do not know; or jump the after-inquiry on your The heir of his reward; which I will add own peril : and how you shall speed in your To you, the liver, heart, and brain of Britain, journey's end, I think you 'll never return to [To BELARIUS, GUIDERIUS, and ARVIRAGUS. tell one.
By whom, I grant, she lives. "Tis now the time Post. I tell thee, fellow, there are none want To ask of whence you are : report it. eyes to direct them the way I am going, but Bel. Sir, such as wink, and will not use them.
In Cambria are we born, and gentlemen : Gaol. What an infinite mock is this, that a Further to boast were neither true nor modest, man should have the best use of eyes, to see the Unless I add, we are honest. way of blindness! I am sure hanging 's the way Cym. Bow your knees: of winking.
Arise, my knights o’the battle; I create you
Companions to our person, and will fit you
With dignities becoming your estates.
Enter Cornelius and Ladies. Post. Thou bringest good news: I am called There's business in these faces.—Why so sadly to be made free.
Greet you our victory ? you look like Romans, Gaol. I 'll be hanged, then.
And not o'the court of Britain. Post. Thou shalt be then freer than a gaoler ; Cor. Hail, great king! no bolts for the dead.
To sour your happiness, I must report [Exeunt Posthumus and Messenger. | The queen is dead. Gaol. Unless a man would marry a gallows, Cym. Whom worse than a physician and beget young gibbets, I never saw one so Would this report become? But I consider, prone. Yet, on my conscience, there are verier By medicine life may be prolonged, yet death knaves desire to live, for all he be a Roman : Will seize the doctor too. How ended she? and there be some of them too that die against 1 Cor. With horror, madly dying, like her life; their wills; so should I, if I were one. I would Which, being cruel to the world, concluded we were all of one mind, and one mind good; | Most cruel to herself. What she confessed O, there were desolation of gaolers and gal- | I will report, so please you : these her women lowses! I speak against my present profit; but Can trip me, if I err; who, with wet cheeks, my wish hath a preferment in't. (Exeunt. Were present when she finished.
Cym. Pr'y thee, say.
Affected greatness got by you, not you :
Married your royalty; was wife to your place; Enter CYMBELINE, Belarius, GUIDERIUS, Arvi
Abhorred your person. RAGUS, Pisanio, Lords, Officers, and At
Cym. She alone knew this: tendants.
And but she spoke it dying, I would not Cym. Stand by my side, you whom the gods | Believe her lips in opening it. Proceed. have made
Cor. Your daughter, whom she bore in hand Preservers of my throne. Woe is my heart
to love That the poor soldier that so richly fought, With such integrity, she did confess Whose rags shamed gilded arms, whose naked Was as a scorpion to her sight; whose life, breast
But that her flight prevented it, she had Stepped before targe of proof, cannot be found: | Ta'en off my poison.
Cym. O most delicate fiend ! Who is 't can read a woman ?-Is there more? Cor. More, sir, and worse. She did confess
Cym. Heard you all this, her women?
Cym. Mine eyes
Roman prisoners, guarded: Posthumus behind,
Luc. Consider, sir, the chance of war: the day
Cym. I have surely seen him; His favour is familiar to me.Boy, thou hast looked thyself into my grace, And art mine own. I know not why nor wherefore To say live, boy: ne'er thank thy master; live : And ask of Cymbeline what boon thou wilt, Fitting my bounty and thy state, I'll give it; Yea, though thou do demand a prisoner, The noblest ta'en.
Imo. I humbly thank your highness.
Luc. I do not bid thee beg my life, good lad; And yet I know thou wilt.
Imo. No, no: alack, There's other work in hand; I see a thing Bitter to me as death: your life, good master, Must shuffle for itself.
Luc. The boy disdains me, He leaves me, scorns me: briefly die their joys That place them on the truth of girls and boys. Why stands he so perplexed ?
Cym. What wouldst thou, boy? I love thee more and more; think more and more What's best to ask. Know'st him thou look'st
on? Speak, Wilt have him live? Is he thy kin? thy friend?
Imo. He is a Roman; no more kin to me Than I to your highness; who, being born your
vassal, Am something nearer.
Cym. Wherefore ey'st him so?
Imo. I 'll tell you, sir, in private, if you please To give me hearing.
Cym. Ay, with all my heart, And lend my best attention. What's thy name?
Imo. Fidele, sir.
Cym. Thou art, my good youth, my page; I'll be thy master : walk with me; speak freely.
[Cymbeline and Imogen converse apart. Bel. Is not this boy revived from death?
Arv. One sand another
Gui. The same dead thing alive.
forbear; Creatures may be alike : were't he, I am sure He would have spoke to us.
Gui. But we saw him dead.
Pisa. It is my mistress : [Aside.
[CYMBELINE and Imogen come forward. Cym. Come, stand thou by our side; Make thy demand aloud. — Sir [to Iachimo],
step you forth; Give answer to this boy, and do it freely;
Or by our greatness, and the grace of it,
And then a mind put in 't, either our brags Which is our honour, bitter torture shall
Were cracked of kitchen trulls, or his description Winnow the truth from falsehood.--On; speak | Proved us unspeaking sots. to him.
Cym. Nay, nay, to the purpose. Imo. My boon is, that this gentleman may render Tach. Your daughter's chastity—there it begins! Of whom he had this ring.
He spake of her as Dian had hot dreams, Post. What's that to him? [Aside. And she alone were cold: whereat, I, wretch!
Cym. That diamond upon your finger, say Made scruple of his praise; and wagered with him How came it yours?
Pieces of gold, 'gainst this, which then he wore Iach. Thou 'lt torture me to leave unspoken that Upon his honoured finger, to attain Which, to be spoke, would torture thee.
In suit the place of his bed, and win this ring Cym. How! me?
By hers and mine adultery: he, true knight, Iach. I am glad to be constrained to utter that No lesser of her honour confident which
Than I did truly find her, stakes this ring; Torments me to conceal. By villany
And would so had it been a carbuncle I got this ring : 'twas Leonatus' jewel;
Of Phæbus' wheel; and might so safely, had it Whom thou didst banish ; and (which more may Been all the worth of his car. Away to Britain grieve thee,
Post I in this design: well may you, sir, As it doth me) a nobler sir ne'er lived
Remember me at court, where I was taught 'Twixt sky and ground. Wilt thou hear more, Of your chaste daughter the wide difference my lord ?
"T wixt amorous and villanous. Being thus Cym. All that belongs to this.
quenched Iach. That paragon, thy daughter, Of hope, not longing, mine Italian brain For whom my heart drops blood, and my false spirits 'Gan in your duller Britain operate Quail to remember, -Give me leave; I faint. Most vilely! for my vantage, excellent; Cym. My daughter! what of her? Renew thy And, to be brief, my practice so prevailed, strength :
That I returned with simular proof enough I had rather thou shouldst live while nature will, To make the noble Leonatus mad, Than die ere I hear more: strive, man, and speak. By wounding his belief in her renown
Iach. Upon a time (unhappy was the clock With tokens, thus and thus; averring notes That struck the hour!)-it was in Rome (accursed Of chamber-hanging, pictures, this her bracelet The mansion where!)—'t was at a feast (O’would (0, cunning, how I got it!), nay, some marks Our viands had been poisoned! or, at least, Of secret on her person, that he could not Those which I heaved to head!)-the good Post But think her bond of chastity quite cracked, humus
I having ta'en the forfeit. Whereupon,(What should I say? he was too good to be
Methinks I see him now,Where ill men were ; and was the best of all
Post. Ay, so thou dost, Amongst the rar’st of good ones), sitting sadly,
[Coming forward. Hearing us praise our loves of Italy
Italian fiend !-Ah me, most credulous fool, For beauty that made barren the swelled boast Egregious murderer, thief, anything Of him that best could speak: for feature, laming That's due to all the villains past, in being, The shrine of Venus, or straight-pight Minerva, To come! O, give me cord, or knife, or poison, Postures beyond brief nature; for condition, Some upright justicer! Thou, king, send out A shop of all the qualities that man
For torturers ingenious: it is I Loves woman for; besides, that hook of wiving, That all the abhorréd things o'the earth amend, Fairness, which strikes the eye :
By being worse than they. I am Posthumus, Cym. I stand on fire:
That killed thy daughter :- villain-like, I lie ; Come to the matter. ·
That caused a lesser villain than myself, Iach. All too soon I shall,
A sacrilegious thief, to do't:the temple Unless thou wouldst grieve quickly.-- This Post | Of virtue was she; yea, and she berself. humus
Spit and throw stones, cast mire upon me, set (Most like a noble lord in love, and one
The dogs o' the street to bay me: every villain That had a royal lover) took his hint;
Be called Posthumus Leonatus; and
My queen, my life, my wife! O Imogen!
Peace, my lord; hear, hear!