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Too much to know is to know nought but fame;
Dum. Proceeded well, to stop all good proceeding!
Long. He weeds the corn, and still lets grow the weeding. Beroune. The spring is near, when green geese are a breeding.
Dum. How follows that? Berowne. Fit in his place and time. Dum. In reason nothing. Berowne. Something then in rime. King. Berowne is like an envious sneaping frost That bites the first-born infauts of the spring. Berowne. Well, say I am: why should proud summer boast
Before the birds have any cause to sing? Why should I joy in an abortive birth? At Christmas I no more desire a rose Than wish a snow in May's new fangled mirth; But like of each thing that in season grows. So you, to study now it is too late, Climb o'er the house to unlock the little gate. King. Well, sit you out: go home, Berowne: adieu! 110 Berowne. No, my good lord; I have sworn to stay with you :
And though I have for barbarism spoke more Than for that angel knowledge you can say, Yet confident I'll keep what I have swore,
And bide the penance of each three years' day. Give me the paper; let me read the same; And to the strict'st decrees I'll write my name. King. How well this yielding rescues thee from
Berowne. Item, That no woman shall come within a mile of my court. Hath this been proclaimed ?
This article, my liege, yourself must break;
A maid of grace and complete majesty
To her decrepit, sick, and bed-rid father: Therefore this article is made in vain,
Or vainly comes the admired princess hither. King. What say you, lords? why, this was quite forgot.
Beroune. So study evermore is overshot: While it doth study to have what it would, It doth forget to do the thing it should; And when it hath the thing it hunteth most, 'Tis won as towns with fire; so won, so lost. King. We must of force dispense with this decree;
She must lie here on mere necessity.
For every man with his affects is born,
Not by might master'd, but by special grace. If I break faith, this word shall speak for me, I am forsworn on 'mere necessity.' So to the laws at large I write my name;
And he that breaks them in the least degree Stands in attainder of eternal shame:
Enter DULL with a letter, and COSTARD. Dull. Which is the duke's own person?
Suggestions are to others as to me; But I believe, although I seem so loath, I am the last that will last keep his oath. But is there no quick recreation granted? King. Ay, that there is. Our court, you know, is haunted
With a refined traveller of Spain;
A man in all the world's new fashion planted,
For interim to our studies shall relate In high-born words the worth of many a knight From tawny Spain lost in the world's debate. How you delight, my lords, I know not, I; But, I protest, I love to hear him lie, And I will use him for my minstrelsy.
Berowne. Armado is a most illustrious wight, A man of fire-new words, fashion's own knight, Long. Costard the swain and he shall be our sport;
And so to study, three years is but short.
Berowne. This, fellow. What wou'd'st?
Dull. I myself reprehend his own person, for I am his grace's tharborough: but I would see his own person in flesh and blood.
Beroune. This is he.
Dull. Signior Arm - Arm - commends you. There's villany abroad: this letter will tell
Cost. Sir, the contempts thereof are as touching
King. A letter from the magnificent Armado. Beroune. How low soever the matter, I hope in God for high words.
Long. A high hope for a low heaven: God grant us patience!
Berown. To hear? or forbear laughing? Long. To hear meekly, sir, and to laugh moderately; or to forbear both.
Berowne. Well, sir, be it as the style shall give us cause to climb in the merriness.
Cost. The matter is to me, sir, as concerning Jaquenetta. The manner of it is, I was taken with the manner.
Berowne. In what manner?
Cost. In manner and form following, sir; all those three: I was seen with her in the manorhouse, sitting with her upon the form, and taken following her into the park; which, put together, is in manner and form following. Now, sir, for the manner, it is the manner of a man to speak to a woman; for the form,-in some form.
Beroune. For the following, sir?
Cost. As it shall follow in my correction; and
King. Will you hear this letter with attention?
Cost. Such is the simplicity of man to hearken after the flesh.
King. Great deputy, the welkin's vicegerent, and sole dominator of Navarre, my soul's earth's God, and body's fostering patron. 220
Cost. Not a word of Costard yet.
King. sorted and consorted, contrary to thy estab lished proclaimed edict and continent canon, with you-with-O! with--but with this I passion to say wherewith,
Cost. With a wench.
King. With a child of our grandmother Eve, a female; or, for thy more sweet understanding, a woman. Him I, as my ever-esteemed duty pricks me on, have sent to thee, to receive the meed of punishment, by thy sweet grace's officer, Anthony Dull, a man of good repute, carriage, bearing, and estimation. Dull. Me, an 't shall please you; I am Anthony Dull.
Cost. It may be so; but if he say it is so, he is, in telling true, but so,
King, that shallow vassal,-
King. No words!
Cost. Of other men's secrets, I beseech you. 229 King. So it is, besieged with sable-coloured melancholy, I did commend the black-oppressing humour to the most wholesome physic of thy health-giving air; and, as I am a gentleman, betook myself to walk. The time when. About the sixth hour; when beasts most graze, birds best peck, and men sit down to that nourishment which is called supper: so much for the | time when. Now for the ground which; which, I mean, I walked upon: it is ycleped thy park. Then for the place where; where, I mean, I did encounter that obscene and most preposterous event, that draweth from my snow-white pen the ebon-coloured ink, which here thou viewest, beholdest, surveyest, or seest. But to the place where; it standeth north-north-east and by east from the west corner of thy curious knotted garden: there did I see that low-spirited swain, that base minnow of thy mirth,
King, that unlettered small-knowing soul,—
King, which, as I remember, hight Costard,-
King. For Jaquenetta,-so is the weaker vessel called which I apprehended with the aforesaid swain, -I keep her as a vessel of thy law's fury; and shall, at the least of thy sweet notice, bring her to trial. Thine, in all compliments of devoted and heartburning heat of duty,
DON ADRIANO DE ARMADO. Berowne. This is not so well as I looked for, but the best that ever I heard.
King. Ay, the best for the worst. But, sirral, what say you to this?
Cost. Sir, I confess the wench.
King. Did you hear the proclamation?
Cost. I do confess much of the hearing it, but little of the marking of it.
King. It was proclaimed a year's imprison ment to be taken with a wench.
Cost. If it were, I deny her virginity: I was taken with a maid.
King. This maid will not serve your turn, sir.
Cost. Be to me and every man that dares not you shall fast a week with bran and water. fight.
Cost. I had rather pray a month with mutton and porridge.
Cost. I was taken with none, sir: I was taken with a damosel.
King. Well, it was proclaimed 'damosel.' Cost. This was no damosel neither, sir: she was a virgin.
King. It is so varied too, for it was proclaimed virgin.'
King. And Don Armado shall be your keeper.
Exeunt KING, LONGAVILLE, and DUMAINE. Berowne. I'll lay my head to any good man's hat,
Moth. Why, sir, is this such a piece of study? Now, here is three studied, ere ye'll thrice wink; and how easy it is to put 'years' to the word 'three,' and study three years in two words, the dancing horse will tell you.
Arm. A most fine figure!
Arm. I will hereupon confess I am in love; and as it is base for a soldier to love, so am I in love with a base wench. If drawing my sword against the humour of affection would deliver me from the reprobate thought of it, I would take Desire prisoner, and ransom him to any French courtier for a new-devised courtesy. I think scorn to sigh: methinks I should outswear Cupid. Comfort me, boy. What great men have been in love?
Moth. Hercules, master.
Arm. Most sweet Hercules! More authority, dear boy, name more; and, sweet my child, let them be men of good repute and carriage.
Moth. Samson, master: he was a man of good carriage, great carriage, for he carried the towngates on his back like a porter; and he was in love.
Arm. Owell-knit Samson! strong-jointed Samson! I do excel thee in my rapier as much as thou didst me in carrying gates. I am in love too. Who was Samson's love, my dear Moth? Moth. A woman, master.
Arm. Of what complexion?
Moth. Of all the four, or the three, or the two, or one of the four.
Arm. Tell me precisely of what complexion. Moth. Of the sea-water green, sir.
Arm. Is that one of the four complexions? Moth. As I have read, sir; and the best of them too.
Arm. Green indeed is the colour of lovers; but to have a love of that colour, methinks, Samson had small reason for it. He surely affected her for her wit.
Moth. It was so, sir, for she had a green wit. Arm. My love is most immaculate white and red.
A dangerous rime, master, against the reason of white and red.
Arm. Is there not a ballad, boy, of the King and the Beggar ?
Moth. The world was very guilty of such a ballad some three ages since; but I think now 'tis not to be found; or, if it were, it would neither serve for the writing nor the tune.
Arm. I will have that subject newly writ o'er, that I may example my digression by some mighty precedent. Boy, I do love that country girl that I took in the park with the rational hind Costard: she deserves well.
Moth. Aside. To be whipped; and yet a better love than my master.
Arm. Sing, boy: my spirit grows heavy in love. Moth. And that's great marvel, loving a light wench.
Arm. I say, sing.
Moth. Forbear till this company be past. Enter DULL, COSTARD, and JAQUENETTA. Dull. Sir, the duke's pleasure is, that you keep Costard safe: and you must let him take no delight nor no penance, but a' must fast three days a week. For this damsel, I must keep her at the park; she is allowed for the daywoman. Fare you well.
Arm. I do betray myself with blushing. Maid! Jaq. Man?
Arm. I will visit thee at the lodge.
Arm. Thou shalt be heavily punished. Cost. I am more bound to you than your fellows, for they are but lightly rewarded.
Arm. Take away this villain: shut him up. Moth. Come, you transgressing slave: away! Cost. Let me not be pent up, sir: I will fast, being loose.
Moth. No, sir; that were fast and loose: thou shalt to prison.
Cost. Well, if ever I do see the merry days of desolation that I have seen, some shall see
Moth. What shall some see?
Cost. Nay, nothing, Master Moth, but what they look upon. It is not for prisoners to be too silent in their words; and therefore I will say nothing I thank God I have as little patience as another man, and therefore I can be quiet. Exeunt MOTH and COSTARD. Arm. I do affect the very ground, which is base, where her shoe, which is baser, guided by her foot, which is basest, doth tread. I shall be forsworn, which is a great argument of falsehood, if I love. And how can that be true love which is falsely attempted? Love is a familiar; Love is a devil: there is no evil angel but Love. Yet was Samson so tempted, and he had an excellent strength; yet was Solomon so seduced, and he had a very good wit. Cupid's butt-shaft is too hard for Hercules' club, and therefore too much odds for a Spaniard's rapier. The first and second cause will not serve my turn; the passado he respects not, the duello he regards not: his disgrace is to be called boy, but his glory is to subdue men. Adieu, valour! rust, rapier! be still, drum! for your manager is in love; yea, he loveth. Assist me, some extemporal god of rime, for I am sure I shall turn sonneter. Devise, wit; write, pen; for I am for whole volumes in folio. Exit.
SCENE I.-The King of Navarre's Park. Pavilion and Tents at a distance.
Matchless Navarre; the plea of no less weight
Enter the PRINCESS of France, ROSALINE, MARIA, KATHARINE, BOYET, Lords, and other Attend
Boyet. Now, madam, summon up your dearest spirits:
Consider whom the king your father sends,
Needs not the painted flourish of your praise :
Boyet. Proud of employment, willingly I go.
Who are the votaries, my loving lords,
It should none spare that come within his power. Prin. Some merry mocking lord, belike; is 'tso! Mar. They say so most that most his humours know.
Prin. Such short-liv'd wits do wither as they grow. Who are the rest?
Kath. The young Dumaine, a well-accomplish'd youth,
Of all that virtue love for virtue lov'd:
Ros. Another of these students at that time
For every object that the one doth catch
Prin. God bless my ladies! are they all in love, That every one her own hath garnished With such bedecking ornaments of praise? First Lord. Here comes Boyet.
Now, what admittance, lord? Boyet. Navarre had notice of your fair approach; And he and his competitors in oath Were all address'd to meet you, gentle lady, Before I came. Mairy, thus much I have learnt; He rather means to lodge you in the field, Like one that comes here to besiege his court, Than seek a dispensation for his oath, To let you enter his unpeopled house. Here comes Navarre.
The Ladies mask. Enter KING, LONGAVILLE, DUMAINE, BEROWNE,
King. Fair princess, welcome to the court of Navarre.
Prin. Fair' I give you back again; and welcome' I have not yet: the roof of this court is too high to be yours, and welcome to the wide fields too base to be mine.
King. You shall be welcome, madam, to my
Prin. I will be welcome then: conduct me
King. Hear me, dear lady; I have sworn an oath. Prin. Our Lady help my lord! he'll be forsworn. King. Not for the world, fair madam, by my will.
Prin. Why, will shall break it; will, and nothing else. 100
King. Your ladyship is ignorant what it is. Prin. Were my lord so, his ignorance were wise, Where now his knowledge must prove ignorance. I hear your grace hath sworn out house-keeping: 'Tis deadly sin to keep that oath, my lord, And sin to break it. But pardon me, I am too sudden-bold: To teach a teacher ill bescemeth me. Vouchsafe to read the purpose of my coming, And suddenly resolve me in my suit.
110 Gives a paper. King. Madam, I will, if suddenly I may. Prin. You will the sooner that I were away, For you'll prove perjur'd if you make me stay. Beronne. Did not I dance with you in Brabant once?
Ros. Did not I dance with you in Brabant once? Berowne. I know you did. Ros. To ask the question! Beroune.
How needless was it then
You must not be so quick. Ros. 'Tis long of you that spur me with such questions.
Berone. Your wit's too hot, it speeds too fast, 'twill tire.
Ros. Not till it leave the rider in the mire. 120 Berowne. What time o' day?
Ros. The hour that fools should ask.
Berowne. Now fair befall your mask! Ros. Fair fall the face it covers! Beroune. And send you many lovers! Ros. Amen, so you be none. Beroune. Nay, then will I be gone. King. Madam, your father here doth intimate The payment of a hundred thousand crowns; Being but the one half of an entire sum Disbursed by my father in his wars. But say that he, or we, as neither have, Receiv'd that sum, yet there remains unpaid A hundred thousand more; in surety of the which, One part of Aquitaine is bound to us, Although not valued to the money's worth. If then the king your father will restore But that one half which is unsatisfied, We will give up our right in Aquitaine, And hold fair friendship with his majesty. But that, it seems, he little purposeth, For here he doth demand to have repaid A hundred thousand crowns; and not demands, On payment of a hundred thousand crowns, To have his title live in Aquitaine; And have the money by our father lent, Which we much rather had depart withal, Than Aquitaine, so gelded as it is. Dear princess, were not his requests so far From reason's yielding, your fair self should make A yielding 'gainst some reason in my breast, 151 And go well satisfied to France again.
Prin. You do the king my father too much wrong
And wrong the reputation of your name,
We arrest your word. Boyet, you can produce acquittances For such a sum from special officers Of Charles his father.
Satisfy me so. Boyet. So please your grace, the packet is not
Where that and other specialties are bound:
King. It shall suffice me: at which interview
Prin. Sweet health and fair desires consort your grace!
King. Thy own wish wish I thee in every place! Exit. Berowne. Lady, I will commend you to mine own heart.
Ros. Pray you, do my commendations; I would be glad to see it.
Berowne. I would you heard it groan.
Ros. Is the fool sick!