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Thou waft their nurse; they take thee for their mother,
And every day do honour to thy Grave;
Myself Belarius, that am Morgan callid,
They take for natural father. The game's up.
. S CE N E IV.
Enter Pisanio, and Imogen. Imo. HOU told'st me, when we came from horse,
the place Was near at hand. Ne'er long'd my mother so To see me first, as I have now - Pifanio, Where is Posthumus ? What is in thy mind, That makes thee ftare thus ? wherefore breaks that
figh From th' inward of thee? one, but painted thus, Would be interpreted a thing perplex'd Beyond self-explication. Put ihyself Into a 'haviour of less fèar, ere wildness Vanquish my faider senses--what's the matter? Why tender'st thou that paper to me, with A look untender ? if't be summer news, Smile to't before; if winterly, thou need'st But keep that count'nance ftill. My husband's hand ? That drug-damn'd Italy hath out-craftied him, And he's at some hard point. Speak man; thy tongue May take off some extremity, which to read Would be e'en mortal to me.
Pif. Please you, read; And you
Thall find me, wretched man, a thing The most disdain'd of fortune.
Imogen reads. TH
'H Y mistress, Pisanio, hath play’d the strumpet in my
bed : the testimonies whereof lie bleeding in me. I Speak not out of weak surmises, but from proof as strong as my grief,anlas certain as I expe&t my revenge.
part thou, Pifanio, must a& for me. If thy faith be not
tainted with the breath of hers, let thine hands take away
her life: I shall give thee opportunity at Milford-Haven.
She hath my letter for the purpose; where, if thou fear to
strike, and to make me certain it is done, thou art the Pan-
der to her dishonour, and equally to me disloyal.
. What shall I need to draw my sword ? the
Hath cut her throat already.-No, 'uis lander;
Whose edge is sharper than the sword, whose tongue
Out-venoms all the worms of Nile; whose breath
Rides on the posting winds, and doth belie
All corners of the world. Kings, Queens, and states,
Maids, matrons, nay, the secrets of the Grave
This viperous flander enters. What cheer, Madam ?
Imo. Falfe to his bed! what is it to be false ?
To lie in watch there, and to think on him ?
To weep 'twixt clock and clock? if sleep charge
To break it with a fearful dream of hin,
And cry myself awake? that false to's bed!
Pil Alas, good lady!
Imo. I false ? thy conscience witness, Iachimo,
Thou didst accuse him of incontinency,
Thou then look'st like a villain: now, methinks,
Thy favour's good enough. Some Jay of Italy
(* Whose meether was her painting) hath betray'd
Poor I am ftale, a garment out of fashion ;
And, for I'm richer than to hang by th' walls,
I must be ript: to pieces with me : oh,
Men's vows are women's traitors.--All good
By thy revolt, oh busband, shall be thought
Put on for villany: not born, where't grows;
But worn, a bait for ladies.
* Whose mother was her painting -] the true Word is Meether, a North Country Word, signifying Beauty.
Pif. Madam, here me
Imo. True honest men being heard, like falfe
Were in his time thought false: and Sinon's Weeping
Did scandal many a holy tear; took pity
From most true wretchedness. So thou, Posthumus,
Wilt lay the leven to all proper men ;
Goodly, and gallant, shall be false and perjur'd,
From thy great fail. Come, fellow, be thou honeft,
Do thou thy master's bidding: when thou feeft him,
A little witnel's my obedience. Look!
I draw the sword myself, take it, and hit
The innocent mansion of my love, my heart;
Fear not, 'tis empty of all things, but grief;
Thy master is not there; who was, indeed,
The riches of it. Do his Bidding, ftrike;
Thou may'st be valiant in a better cause,
But now thou seem'ft a coward.
Pif. Hence, vile instrument!
Thou shalt not damn my hand.
Imo. Why, I must die;
And, if I do not by thy hand, thou art
No servant of thy mafter's. "Gainst self-flaughter
There is a prohibition fo divine,
weak hand : come,
my heart(Something's afore't) - soft, soft, we'll no defence;
[Opening her breaft. Obedient as the scabbard ! What is here? The Scriptures of the loyal Leonatus All turn'd to Heresy ? away, away,
(Pulling his letters out of her bosom. Corrupters of my faith! you shall no more Be stoinachers to my heart: thus may poor fools Believe false teachers : tho' those, that are betray'd, Do feel the treason fliarply, yet the traitor Stands in worle case of woe. And thou, Pofthumus, That set my disobedience 'gainit the King,
And mad'st me put into contempt the suits
Of princely fellows, shalt hereafter find,
It is no act of common passage, but
A strain of rareness : and I grieve myself,
To think, when thou shalt be dif-edg'd by her
Whom now thou tir'st on, how thy memory
Will then be pang’d by me.--Pr’ythee, dispatch ;
The lamb entreats the butcher. Where's thy knife?
Thou art too flow to do thy master's bidding,
When I desire it too.
Pif. O gracious lady!
Since I receiv'd command to do this business,
I have not lept one wink.
Imo. Do't, and to bed then.
Pif. I'll break mine eye-balls first.
Imo. Ah, wherefore then
Didst undertake it? why haft thou abus'd
So many miles, with a pretence? this place ?
Mine action and thine own? our horses' labour?
The time inviting thee? the perturb’d Court,
For my being absent? whereunto I never
Purpose Return. Why haft thou gone so far,
To be unbent, when thou hast ta'en thy stand,
Th' elected deer before thee?
Pif. But to win time
To lose so bad employment, in the which
I have confider'd of a course; good lady,
Hear me with patience.
Imo. Talk thy tongue weary, speak,
I've heard, I am a strumpet; and mine ear
(Therein false struck) can take no greater wound,
Nor tent to bottom That. But, speak.
Pif. Then, Madam,
I thought, you would not back again.
Ino. Moit like,
Bringing me here to kill me.
Pif. Not so neither;
But if I were as wise as honest, then
My purpose would prove well; it cannot be,
But that my m'after is abus'd; some villain,
And fingular in his art, hath done you both
This cursed injury.
Imo. Some Roman Courtezan
Pij. No, on my life.
I'll give him notice you are dead, 'and send him
Some bloody fign of it: for 'tis commanded,
I should do so. You shall be miss'd at Court;
And that will well confirm it.
Imo. Why, good fellow,
What shall I do the while? where 'bide ? how live?
Or in my life what comfort, when I am
Pif. If you'll back to th' Court
Imo. No Court, no Father; nor no more ado
With that harsh, noble, fimple, Nothing, Cloter':
That Cloten, whose love-fuit hath been to me
As fearful as a fiege.
Pij. If not at Court,
Then not in Britainle müst you
'bide. lino. Where then ? Hath Britaine all the Sun that shines ? Day, night, Are they not but in Britaine? I'th' world's volume Our Britaine seems as of it, but not in it; In a great pool, a swan's nest. Pr'ythee, think, There's living out of Britaine.
Pif. I'm moft glad,
You think of other place: th' Ambassador,
Lucius the Roman comes to Milford-Haven
To-morrow. Now, if you could wear a Mien
Dark as your fortune is, and but disguise
---Now, if you could wear a mind Dark as your fortune is,-) What had the Darkness of her Mind to do with the Concealment of Perfon, which is the only Thing here advised ? On the Contrary, her Mind was to continue unchanged, in order to support her Change of Fortune. Shakespear wrote, -Now, if you could wear a mien.