Изображения страниц
PDF
EPUB
[ocr errors]

Laf. [Returns.] Nay, come your ways.

[Bringing in Helena. King. This haste hath wings, indeed.

Laf. Nay, come your ways,
This is his Majesty, say your mind to him ;
A traitor you do look like; but such traitors
His Majesty seldom fears ; I'm Crefid's uncle,
That dare leave two together; fare you

well. [Exit. King. Now, fair One, do's your business follow us ?

Hel. Ay, my good Lord.
Gerard de Narbon was my father,
In what he did profess, well found.

King. I knew him.

Hel. The rather will I spare my praise towards him;
Knowing him, is enough : on's bed of death
Many receipts he gave me, chiefly one,
Which as the deareft issue of his practice,
And of his old experience th'only darling,
He bade me store up, as a triple eye,
Safer than mine own two: more dear I have fo;
And hearing your high Majesty is touch'd
With that malignant cause, wherein the honour
Of my dear father's gift stands chief in power,
I come to tender it, and my appliance,
With all bound humbleness.

King. We thank you, maiden ;
Buç may not be so credulous of cure,
When our most learned doctors leave us ;: and
The congregated college have concluded,
That labouring art can never ransom nature
From her unaidable estate : we must net
So ftain our judgment, or corrupt our hope,
To prostitute our past-cure malady
To

empericks; or to diffever so
Our
great

self and our credit, to esteem
A senseless help, when help paft sense we deem.

Hel. My duty then shall pay me for my pains ;
I will no more enforce mine office on you;
Humbly intreating from your royal thoughts
A modest one to bear me back again,

King.

[ocr errors]

B 2

King. I cannot give thee less, to be call'd grateful;
Thou thought't to help me, and such thanks I give,
As one near death to those that wish him live;
But what at full I know, thou know'st no part;
I knowing all my peril, thou no art.

Hel. What I can do, can do no hurt to try,
Since you set up your rest 'gainst remedy,
He that of greatest works is finisher,
Oft does them by the weakest minister:
So holy writ in babes hath judgment shown,
When judges have been babes; great foods have flown
From simple sources; and great seas have dry'd,
When mir’cles have by th' greatest been deny'd.
Oft expectation fails, and most oft there
Where most it promises : and oft it hits
Where hope is coldest, and despair most fits.
King. I must not hear thee; fare thee well, kind

Maid ;
Thy pains, not us’d, must by thy self be paid :
Proffers, not took, reap thanks for their reward.

Hel. Inspired merit so by breath is barr'd :
It is not so with him that all things knows,
As 'tis with us, that square our guess by shows :
But most it is presumption in us, when
The help of heav'n we count the act of men.
Dear Sir, to my endeavours give consent,
Of heav'n, not me, make an experiment.
I am not an impostor, that proclaim
My self against the level of mine aim ;
But know I think, and think I know most sure,
My art is not past power, nor you past cure.

King. Art thou so confident? within what space.
Hop'it thou my cure ?

Hel. The greatest grace lending grace,
Ere twice the horses of the sun shall bring
Their fiery torcher his diurnal ring ;
Ere twice in murk and occidental damp
Moift Hesperus hath quench'd his fleepy lamp;
Or four and twenty times the pilot's glass
Hath told the thievish minutes how they pass;

What

What is infirm from your sound parts shall Ay,
Health shall live free, and sickness freely die.

King: Upon thy certainty and confidence,
What dar'ft thou venture ?

Hel. Tax of impudence,
A ftrumpet's boldness, a divulged shame
Traduc'd by odious ballads : my maiden's name
Sear'd otherwise, no worse of worst extended ;
With vilelt torture let my life be ended.
King. Methinks, in thee fome blessed Spirit doth

speak
His powerful sound, within an organ weak;
And what impossibility would slay
In common sense, sense faves another way.
Thy life is dear; for all that life can rate
Worth name of life, in thee hath estimate :
(9) Youth, beauty, wisdom, courage, virtue, all
That happiness and prime can happy call;
Thou this to hazard, needs must intimate
Skill infinite, or monstrous desperate.
Sweet Pra&tiser, thy phyfick I will try ;
That ministers thine own death, if I die.

Hel. If I break time, or Alinch in property
Of what I spoke, unpitied let me die,
And well deserv'd! Not helping, death's my fee ;
But if I help, what do you promise me?

(9) Touth, beauty, wisdom, courage, all, &c.] This Verse is too hort by a Foot ; and apparently some Disfyllable is drop'd out by Mischance. Mr. Warburton concurrid with me in Conje&ure to supply the Verse thus :

Touth, beauty, wisdom, courage, virtue, all, &c.
Helena had laid a particular Stress on her maiden Reputation;
and the King, afterwards, when he comes to speak of her to
Bertram, says;

-If she be
All that is virtuous, (Save, What thou dislik,
A poor Physician's Daughter ;) thon difik'A
of Virtue for her name :'

[blocks in formation]

King. (10) Make thy demand.
Hel. But will you make it even?
King. Ay, by my scepter, and my hopes of heaven.

Hel. Then Malt thou give me, with thy kingly hand,
What Husband in thy power I will command.
Exempted be from me the arrogance
To chule from forth the royal blood of France ;
My low and humble name to propagate
With any branch or image of thy state:
But such a one thy vassal, whom I know
Is free for me to ask, thee to bestow.

King. Here is my hand, the premises observ'd, Thy will by my performance shall be serv'd : So, make the choice of thine own time ; for I, Thy resolv'd Patient, on thee ftill rely. More should I question thee, and more I must; (Tho' more to know, could not be more to trust :) From whence thou cam'ft, how tended on, but reft Unquestion'd welcome, and undoubted bleft. Give me some help here, hoa! if thou proceed As high as word, my deed shall match thy deed.

[Exeunt.

Cheight of your breeding

SCENE changes to Roufillon.

Enter Countess and Clown. Count. NOME on, Sir; I shall now put you to the

. Clown. I wilī thew my self highly fed, and lowly taught ; I know, my business is but to the court. (10) King. Make thy Demand.

Hel. But will you make it even ?

King. Ay, by my Scepter and my hopes of help.] The King could have but a very night Hope of Help from her, scarce enough to swear by: and therefore Helen might suspect, he meant to equivocate with her. Besides, observe, the greatest Part of the Scene is ftri&tly in Rhyme: and there is no shadow of Reason why it should be interrupted here. I rather imagine, the Poet wrote ; Ay, by my Scepter, and my Hopes of Heaven, Dr. Thirlby.

Count.

Count. But to the court? why, what place make you special, when you put off that with such contempt; but to the court !

Clo. Truly, Madam, if God have lent a man any manners, he inay easily put it off at court: he that cannot make a leg, put off's cap, kiss his hand, and say nothing, has neither leg, hands, lip, nor cap ; and, indeed, such a fellow, to say precilely, were not for the court: but for me, I have an answer will serve all men.

Count. Marry, that's a bountiful answer that fits all questions.

Cle. It is like a barber's chair, that fits all buttocks; the pin-buttock, the quatch-buttock, the brawn-buttock, or any buttock.

Count. Will your answer serve fit to all questions?

Clo. As fit as ten groats is for the hand of an attorney, as your French crown for your taffaty punk, as Tib's ruth for Tom's fore-finger, as a pancake for Shrove-Tuef day, a morris for May-day, as the nail to his hole, the cuckold to his horn, as a scolding quean to a wrangling knave, as the nun's lip to the friar's mouth; náy, as the pudding to his skin.

Count. Have you, I say, an answer of such fitness for all questions?

Clo. From below your duke, to beneath your conllable, it will fit any question.

Count. It must be an answer of most monstrous size, that must fit all demands.

Clo. But a trifle neither, in good faith, if the learned Thould speak truth of it : here it is, and all that belongs to't. Ask me, if I am a courtier ;

-it shall do you no harm to learn.

Count. To be young again, if we could : I will be a fool in a question, hoping to be the wiser by your answer. I pray you, Sir, are you a courtier ?

Clo. O lord, Sir there's a simple putting off : more, more, a hundred of them. Count. Sir, I am a poor friend of yours,

that loves you. Clo..O lord, Siro-thic's, thick, spare not me.

Count.

B 4

« ПредыдущаяПродолжить »