Page images

If ever from your eye-lids wip'd a tear,
And know what 'tis to pity and be pitied ;
Let gentleness my strong enforcement be:
In the which hope, I blush, and hide my sword.

Duke. True is it, that we have seen better days,
And have with holy bell been knolled to church;
And sat at good men's feasts; and wip'd our eyes
Of drops that sacred pity had engendered :
And therefore sit you down in gentleness,
And take upon command what help we have,
That to your wanting may be minister'd.

Orlan. Then but forbear your food a little while,
Whiles, like a doe, I

go to find my fawn,
And give it food. There is an old poor man,
Who after me hath many a weary step
Limp'd in pure love; till he be first suffic'd—
Oppressed with two weak evils, age and hunger,
I will not touch a bit.

Go find him out,
And we will nothing waste till you return.
Orlan. I thank ye; and be blessed for your good comfort!

Exit ORLANDO. The Lords advance.
Duke. Thou see'st, we are not all alone unhappy :
This wide and universal theatre
Presents more woeful pageants than the scene
Wherein we play in.

All the world's a stage,
And all the men and women merely players :
They have their exits, and their entrances ;
And one man in his time plays many parts,
His acts being seven ages. At first, the infant,
Mewling and puking in the nurse's arms;
Then, the whining school-boy, with his satchel,
And shining morning face, creeping like snail
Unwillingly to school : And then, the lover;
Sighing like furnace, with a woeful ballad
Made to his mistress' eye-brow : Then, a soldier ;
Full of strange oaths, and bearded like the pard,
Jealous in honour, sudden and quick in quarrel,

Seeking the bubble reputation
Even in the cannon's mouth: And then, the justice;
In fair round belly, with good capon lin’d,
With eyes severe, and beard of formal cut,
Full of wise saws and modern instances,
And so he plays his part. The sixth age shifts
Into the lean and slipper'd pantaloon;
With spectacles on nose, and pouch on side;
His youthful hose, well sav’d, a world too wide
For his shrunk shank; and his big manly voice,
Turning again towards childish treble, pipes
And whistles in his sound : Last scene of all,
That ends this strange eventful history,
Is second childishness, and mere oblivion;
Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans everything.

Re-enter ORLANDO with ADAM.
Duke. Welcome: set down your venerable burden,
And let him feed.

Orlan. I thank you most for him.

Adam. (sitting) So had you need; I scarce can speak to thank you for myself.

Duke. Welcome, fall to: I will not trouble you, As yet, to question you about your fortunes :Give us some music; and, good cousin, sing.

Blow, blow, thou winter wind,
Thou art not so unkind

As man's ingratitude ;
Thy tooth is not so keen,
Because thou art not seen,

Although thy breath be rude.
Freeze, freeze, thou bitter sky,
That dost not bite so nigh

As benefits forgot :
Though thou the waters warp,
Thy sting is not so sharp

As friend remember'd not.
Duke. (comes forward) If that you were the good Sir Row-
As you have whisper'd faithfully, you were ;
And as mine eye doth his effigies witness,
Most truly limn’d, and living in your

land's son

Be truly welcome hither; I am the Duke,
That loved your father: the residue of your fortune,
Go to my cave and tell me.—Good old man,
Thou art right welcome, as thy master is :
Support him by the arm.—Give me your hand,
And let me all


fortunes understand.

[ocr errors]

The Tempest.

Pros. If I have too austerely punish'd you,
Your compensation makes amends, for I
Have given you here a thrid of mine own life,
Or that for which I live; who once again
I tender to thy hand : all thy vexations
Were but my trials of thy love, and thou
Hast strangely stood the test; here, afore Heaven,
I ratify this my rich gift. O Ferdinand,
Do not smile at me that I boast her off,
For thou shalt find she will outstrip all praise
And make it halt behind her.

I do believe it
Against an oracle.

Pros. Then, as my gift and thine own acquisition
Worthily purchased, take my daughter.
What, Ariel ! my industrious servant, Ariel !

Enter A RIEL.
Ari. What would my potent master ? here I am.
Pros. Thou and thy meaner fellows your last service
Did worthily perform; and I must use you
In such another trick.

Go bring the rabble,
O’er whom I give thee power, here to this place :

Incite them to quick motion ; for I must
Bestow upon the eyes of this young couple
Some vanity of mine art : it is my promise,
And they expect it from me.

Pros. Ay, with a twink.
Ari. Before you can say come' and 'go,'

And breathe twice and cry 'so, so,'
Each one, tripping on his toe,
Will be here with mop and mow.

you love me, master ? no?
Pros. Dearly, my delicate Ariel. Do not approach
Till thou dost hear me call.

Well, I conceive. [Exit.
Pros. Look thou be true ; do not give dalliance
Too much the rein : the strongest oaths are straw
To the fire i' the blood.

I warrant you, sir.

Now come, my Ariel ! bring a corollary,
Rather than want a spirit: appear, and pertly !
No tongue ! all eyes ! be silent.

(Soft music.

Enter IRIS. Iris. Ceres, most bounteous lady, thy rich leas Of wheat, rye, barley, vetches, oats, and pease ; Thy turfy mountains, where live nibbling sheep, And flat meads thatch'd with stover, them to keep ; Thy banks with pioned and twilled brims, Which spongy April at thy hest betrims, To make cold nymphs chaste crowns; and thy broom-groves, Whose shadow the dismissed bachelor loves, Being lass-lorn; thy pole-clipt vineyard ; And thy sea-marge, sterile and rocky hard, Where thou thyself dost air ;—the queen o' the sky, Whose watery arch and messenger am I, Bids thee leave these, and with her sovereign grace, Here on this grass-plot, in this very place, To come and sport: her peacocks fly amain : Approach, rich Ceres, her to entertain.

Enter CeRES.
Cer. Hail, many-colour'd messenger, that ne'er
Dost disobey the wife of Jupiter ;
Who with thy saffron wings upon my

Diffusest honey-drops, refreshing showers,
And with each end of thy blue bow dost crown
My bosky acres and my unshrubb’d down,
Rich scarf to my proud earth ; why hath thy queen
Summoned me hither, to this short-grass'd green?

Iris. A contract of true love to celebrate;
And some donation freely to estate
On the blest lovers.

Tell me, heavenly bow,
If Venus or her son, as thou dost know,
Do now attend the queen ?
Her and her blind boy's scandal'd company
I have forsworn.

Of her society
Be not afraid : I met her deity
Cutting the clouds towards Paphos and her son
Dove-drawn with her.

Highest queen of state,
Great Juno, comes I know her by her gait.

Enter Juno. Juno. How does my bounteous sister? Go with me To bless this twain, that they may prosperous be And honour'd in their issue.

[They sing : Juno. Honour, riches, marriage-blessing,

Long continuance, and increasing,
Hourly joys be still upon you !

Juno sings her blessings on you.
Cer. Earth's increase, foison plenty,

Barns and garners never empty,
Vines with clustering bunches growing,
Plants with goodly burthen bowing ;
Spring come to you at the farthest
In the very end of harvest !
Scarcity and want shall shun you ;
Ceres' blessing so is on you.

« PreviousContinue »