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Ant. of Eph. Do you hear, you minion ?-you'll let us in, I trow?
Brid. [Within.] Can you tell for whose sake?
Dro. of Eph. Master, knock at the door' hard.
Dro. of Syr. [Within.] Let him knock till it ake.
Adr. I Within.] Who is at the gate, that keeps all this noise ?
Ant. of Eph. Are you there, wife ? you might have come before.
Adr. [Within.] Your wife, Sir Knave?-Go, get you from the gate. Ant. of Eph. Get me from the gate! What means this
saucy language ? There's something more in this !-Why, Adriana ! Adr. [Within.] Hence, you familiar coxcomb !Cease
your noise, Or you shall dearly pay for all this outrage. Dromio, be sure you keep fast the doois against them.
Ant. of Eph. Why, wife, I say !
Dro. of Syr. [Within.] She's gone back to dinner, sir, to take a refreshing cup, and has no time to answer idle questions now. Ant. of Eph. Now, on my soul, some strange mysteri
ous guile Lurks underneath this unaccustom'd usage. Some shameful minion here is entertain'd
Ang. (R.) Hare patience, sir~0, let it not be thus ;
Herein you war against your reputation,
And draw within the compass of suspect
Th’inviolated honour of your wife.
Your long experience of her wisdom, sir,
Her sober virtue, years, and modesty,
Plead, on her part, some cause to you unknown ;
And, doubt it not, but she will well excuse
Why, at this time, the doors are barr'd against you.
Ant. of Eph. Shall I be thus shut forth from my own
While they are revelling to my dishonour ?
Go, fetch an instrument, I'll break the door,
Shatter it all to pieces, but I'll enter.
Ang. Be ruled by me-depart in patience,
And let us to the Tiger, all to dinner;
And, about evening, come yourself, alone,
To know the reason of this strange restraint.
If, by strong hand, you offer to break in,
Now, in the stirring passage of the day,
A vulgar comment will be made of it;
Aud that supposed, by the common rout,
Against your yet ungalled estimation,
That may with foul intrusion enter in,
And dwell upon your grave when you are dead
For slander lives even to posterity,
For ever housed, when once it gets possession.
Ant. of Eph. You have prevail'd, I will depart in quiet,
And, in despite of wrath, try to be merry.
I know a wench of excellent discourse,
Pretty and witty--wild, and yet right gentle :
There will we dine.-This woman, that I mean,
My wife (but, I protest, without desert)
Hath oftentimes upbraided me withal.
To her will we to dinner. Get you home,
And fetch the jewel,-by this, I guess, 'tis made.
Bring it, I pray you, to the Porcupine,
For there's the house and there will I bestow it
(Be it for nothing but to spite my wife)
Upon mine hostess. Good sir, use despatch.
Ang. I'll meet you at that place some hour, sir, hence.
[Exit, R. Ant. of Eph. I thank you, sir.-And now, my dainty
wife, Checking my rage, I'll leave you to your follies Some few short hours: enjoy them while you may, Perchance to-morrow you may rue your jest. [Exeunt, L.
SCENE II.-A Garden.
ANTIPHOLIS OF SYRACUSE, (L. c.) ADRIANA, (R. C.) LUCH-
ANA, (L.) and HERMIA, (R.) discovered on Garden Seats.
Adr. [They rise.] Why, why, was I to this keen mock’ry
How at your hands have I deserved this coldness ?
In soothe, you do me wrong. There was a time
When I believed, so fond was my credulity,
The sun was scarce so true unto the day
you to me.
Ant. of Syr. I would some friendly light
Might chase away the mist that clonds our fancies,
And give this dream a meaning! True, I see
These beauteous bowers, in nature's fragrance rich;
Behold the painted children of her hand,
Flaunting in gay luxuriance all around !
I see imperial Phæbus' trembling beam
Dance on the curly brook ; whose gentle current
Glides imperceptibly away, scarce staying
To kiss th’ embracing bank.
Adr. So glides away
Thy hasty love, (O apt allusion !)
And mocks my constant and attentive care,
That seeks, in vain, to keep it.
Luc. Dearest brother,
Why turn on me your eyes ? Regard my sister,
Who with such earuest suit solicits you
To heal her wounded peace.
Adr. It cannot be,
But that some phrensy hath possess'd his mind,
Else could he not, with cold indifference, hear
His Adriana pleading. Music's voice,
O'er such entranced dispositions,
Hath oft a magic power, and can recall
The wand'ring faculties. Good cousiu, Hermia,
Assay those melting strains, wherewith, thou told'st me,
Forsaken Julia labour'd to retrieve
Lysander's truant heart. [They return to their seats.
Stray not to those distant plains :
From thy comfort do not rove,
Tarry in these peaceful glens,
Tread the downy paths of love ·
Is not this seqnester'd shade
Richer than the proud alcove ?
Tarry in this beauteous glade,
Tarry here with me and love.
Listen to the woodlark's note,
Listen to the cooing dove,
Hark! the throstle's mellow throat,
All uniting, carol love;
See the limpid brooks around,
Winding through the varied grove ;
This is passion's fairy ground,
Tarry here with me and love.
Adr. [They rise.] Sister, there is some magic in thinc
That hath infected his Perchance, to thee,
He may unfold the source of his distemp'rature :
For me, no longer will I sue for that,
My right may claim; loose infidelity
And lawless passion hath estranged his soul.
Yet think, my husband, could'st thou bear the like ?
How dearly would it touch thee to the quick,
Should'st thou but hear I was licentious !
Would'st thou not scoff at me, and spurn me from thee ?
Or hurl the name of husband in my face,
Aud tear the stain'd skin off my harlot brow ?
Yea, from my false hand, cut the wedding ring,
And break it with a deep divorcing vow ?
I know thou would'st, and therefore see thou do it;
For if we two be one, and thou play false,
I do digest the poison of thy crimes,
Being strumpeted by thy contagion.
Preserve, then, equal league with the fair bed;
Keep me upstain'd, thou undishonour'd live.
[Exit, with Hermia, n.
Luc. And may it be that you have quite forgot
A husband's office ? Shall, Antipholis,
Even in the spring of love, thy passiou fade ?
If you did wed my sister for her wealth,
Then, for her wealth's sake, use her with more kindness
Or, if you like elsewhere, do it in secret ;
Let not my sister read it in your eye,
Be not thy tongue thy own shame's orator ;
Look sweet, speak fair, become disloyalty,
Apparel vice like virtue's harbinger.
Ant. of Syr. Now, by the air we breathe, I vow, bright
My senses are all smother'd up in wonder ;
All but my sight-with that, methinks, 1 view
An angel pleading ; and, while thus delighted,
I may peruse the graces of that brow,
I will not wish the mystery unfolded,
But to your chidings pay submissive awe,
As to an holy mandate--Speak, speak on.
Luc. (L.) Be secret false—why needs she be acquaiuted ?
What simple thief brags of his own bad deeds ?
'Tis double wrong to truant with your bed,
And let her read it in your looks at board.
Then, gentle brother, get you in again :
And call my sister, wife-comfort her, cheer her
'Tis holy sport to be a little false,
When the sweet breath of Battery conquers strife.
Ant. of Syr. (R.) Sweet mistress, let me call you by
Teach me, oh teach me, how to think and answer .
Lay open to my shallow gross conceit
The folded meaning of your sugar'd words.
Against my soul's pure truth, why labour you
To make it wander in an unknown path ?
Are you a goddess ? Would you new-create me?
Transform me, then, and to your power I'll yield.
But if I am Antipholis, I swear,
Your weeping sister is no wife to me.
Oh, no! to you alone my soul inclines;
Then train me not, sweet mermaid, with thy voice,
To drown me in thy sister's flood of tears !
Sing, syrcn, for thyself, and I will doat !
Spread o'er the silver waves thy glossy locks,
And as a bed I'll take thee, there I'll lie,
And, in that glorious supposition, think
He gains by death, that hath such means to die.
Luc. What, are you mad, that you do reason thus ?
Ant. of Syr. Not mad-enchanted; how, I do not know.
Luc. It is a fault that springeth from your eye.
Ant. of Syr. For gazing on your dazzling beams, fair
Luc. Gaze where you should, and that will clear your
sight. Ant. of Syr. As good to wink, sweet love, as look on
Luc. Why call you me love? call my sister 80.
Ant. of Syr. Thy sister's sister.
Luc. That's my sister.
Ant. of Syr. No;
It is thyself, my own self's better half,
My eye's clear eye, my dear heart's dearer heart,
My food, my fortune, and my sweet hope's aim.
Luc. All this my sister is, or else should be.
Ant. of Syr. Call thyself sister, sweet, for thee I mean ; Thee will I love, with thee would spend my days. Give me thy hand. Luc. Oh, soft, sir, hold you still.
[Crosses, R. I'll seek my sister, to get her consent; If she approve, I shall accord, no doubt. [Erit, R. Ant. of Syr O subtle power ! O soil too capable !