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His glassy essence,-like an angry ape,
Plays such fantastic tricks before high heaven,
As make the angels weep: who, with our spleens,
Would all themselves laugh mortal.


Great men may jest with saints: 'tis wit in them; But, in the less, foul profanation. That in the captain's but a choleric word, Which in the soldier is flat blasphemy.


Hark, how I'll bribe you. Ang. How! bribe me?

(with you. Isab. Ay, with such gifts, that heaven shall share Lucio.

You had marr'd all else. Isab. Not with fond shekels of the tested * gold, Or stones, whose rates are either rich or poor, As fancy values them: but with true prayers, That shall be up at heaven, and enter there, Ere sun-rise; prayers from preserved + souls, From fasting maids, whose minds are dedicate To nothing temporal.


Is this her fault, or mine? The tempter, or the tempted, who sins most? Ha! Not she; nor doth she tempt: but it is I, That lying by the violet, in the sun, Do, as the carrion does, not as the flower, Corrupt with virtuous season. Can it be, That modesty may more betray our sense [enough, Than woman's lightness ? Having waste ground Shall we desire to raze the sanctuary, And pitch our evils theref? O, fy, fy, fy! What dost thou ? or what art thou, Angelo ?

* Attested, stamped.
† Preserved from the corruption of the world.

See 2 Kings, X. 27.

Dost thou desire her foully, for those things
That make her good ? 0, let her brother live:
Thieves for their robbery have authority,
When judges steal themselves. What? do I love her,
That I desire to hear her speak again,
And feast upon her eyes? What is't I dream on?
O cunning enemy, that, to catch a saint,
With saints dost bait thy hook! Most dangerous
Is that temptation, that doth goad us on
To sin in loving virtue: never could the strumpet,
With all her double vigour, art, and nature,
Once stir my temper; but this virtuous maid
Subdues me quite.


When I would pray and think, I think and pray To several subjects: heaven hath my empty words; Whilst my invention, hearing not my tongue, Anchors on Isabel: Heaven in my mouth, As if I did but only chew his name; And in my heart, the strong and swelling evil Of my conception: The state, whereon I studied, Is like a good thing, being often read, Grown fear'd and tedious; yea, my gravity, Wherein (let no man hear me) I take pride, Could I, with boot*, change for an idle plume, Which the air beats for vain. O place! O form! How often dost thou with thy caset, thy habit, Wrench awe from fools, and tie the wiser souls To thy false seeming?


It were as good To pardon him, that hath from nature stolen A man already made, as to remit Their saucy sweetness, that do coin heaven's image, In stamps that are forbid: 'tis all as easy Falsely to take away a life true made,

* Profit.

+ Outside.

As to put mettle in restrained means,
To make a false one.


Let me be ignorant, and in nothing good, But graciously to know I am no better.

Ang. Thus wisdom wishes to appear most bright, When it doth tax itself.

Better it were, a brother died at once,
Than that a sister, by redeeming him,
Should die for ever.


Nay, women are frail too. [selves ; Isab. Ay, as the glasses where they view themWhich are as easy broke as they make forms. Women !-Help heaven! men their creation mar In profiting by them. Nay, call us ten times frail : For we are soft as our complexions are, And credulous to false prints *.



The miserable have no other medicine,
But only hope.


Reason thus with life,If I do lose thee, I do lose a thing That none but fools would keep: a breath thou art, (Servile to all the skiey influences), That dost this habitation, where thou keep'st, Hourly afflict: merely, thou art death's fool;

* Impressions.


For him thou labour'st by thy flight to shun,
And yet run'st toward him still: Thou art not noble;
For all the accommodations that thou bear'st,
Are nurs’d by baseness: Thou art by no means valiant;
For thou dost fear the soft and tender fork
Of a poor worm: Thy best of rest is sleep,
And that thou oft provok’st; yet grossly fear'st
Thy death, which is no more. Thou art not thyself;
For thou exist'st on many a thousand grains
That issue out of dust: Happy thou art not:
For what thou hast not, still thou striv'st to get;
And what thou hast, forget'st: Thou art not certain;
For thy complexion shifts to strange effects *,
After the moon: If thou art rich, thou art poor;
For, like an ass, whose back with ingots bows,
Thou bear’st thy heavy riches but a journey,
And death unloads thee: Friend hast thou none;
For thine own bowels, which do call thee sire,
The mere effusion of thy proper loins,
Do curse the gout, serpigot, and the rheum, [age ;
For ending thee no sooner: Thou hast nor youth, nor
But, as it were, an after dinner's sleep,
Dreaming on both: for all thy blessed youth
Becomes as aged, and doth beg the alms
Of palsied eldf; and when thou art old, and rich,
Thou hast neither heat, affection, limb, nor beauty,
To make thy riches pleasant. What's yet in this,
That bears the name of life? Yet in this life
Lie hid more thousand deaths: yet death we fear,
That makes these odds all even.

Why give you me this shame?
Think you I can a resolution fetch
From flowery tenderness? If I must die,
I will encounter darkness as a bride,
And hug it in mine arms.

* Afects, affections.

† Leprous eruptions.

Old age.

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Claud. Death is a fearful thing.

And shamed life a hateful.
Claud. Ay, but to die, and go we know not where ;
To lie in cold obstruction, and to rot:
This sensible warm motion to become
A kneaded clod; and the delighted spirit
To bathe in fiery floods, or to reside
In thrilling regions of thick-ribbed ice;
To be imprison'd in the viewless* winds,
And blown with restless violence about
The pendent world; or to be worse than worst
Of those, that lawless and incertain thoughts
Imagine howling !—'tis too horrible!
The weariest and most loathed worldly life,
That age, ach, penury, and imprisonment
Can lay on nature, is a paradise
To what we fear of death.


0, I do fear thee, Claudio; and I quake, Lest thou a feverous life should'st entertain, And six or seven winters more respect

* Invisible.

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