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SCENE.-Sometimes in Verona, sometimes in Milan, and on the frontiers of Mantua.
Enter VALENTINE and PROTEUS.
Pro. Wilt thou be gone? Sweet Valentine,
Think on thy Proteus, when thou haply seest
When thou dost meet good hap; and in thy
If ever danger do environ thee,
Val. And writers say, as the most forward bud
To Milan let me hear from thee by letters
Val. And on a love-book pray for my success?
Speed. Twenty to one then he is shipp'd already, And I have play'd the sheep in losing him.
Pro. Indeed, a sheep doth very often stray, An if the shepherd be a while away.
Pro. Why? Could'st thou perceive so much from her?
Speed. Sir, I could perceive nothing at all from her; no, not so much as a ducat for delivering
Speed. You conclude that my master is a your letter. And being so hard to me that shepherd then and I a sheep?
Pro. A silly answer and fitting well a sheep. Speed. This proves me still a sheep. Pro. True, and thy master a shepherd. Speed. Nay, that I can deny by a circumstance. Pro. It shall go hard but I'll prove it by another. Speed. The shepherd seeks the sheep, and not the sheep the shepherd; but I seek my master, and my master seeks not me: therefore I am no sheep. 89
Pro. The sheep for fodder follow the shepherd, the shepherd for food follows not the sheep; thou for wages followest thy master, thy master for wages follows not thee: therefore thou art a sheep. Speed. Such another proof will make me cry 'baa.'
Pro. But dost thou hear? gavest thou my letter to Julia?
Speed. Ay, sir: I, a lost mutton, gave your letter to her, a laced mutton; and she, a laced mutton, gave me, a lost mutton, nothing for my labour.
brought your mind, I fear she 'll prove as hard to you in telling your mind. Give her no token but stones, for she's as hard as steel. Pro. What said she nothing?
Speed. No, not so much as 'Take this for thy pains. To testify your bounty, I thank you, you have testerned me; in requital whereof, henceforth carry your letters yourself. And so, sir, I'll commend you to my master.
Enter JULIA and LUCETTA. Jul. But say, Lucetta, now we are alone, Would'st thou then counsel me to fall in love? Luc. Ay, madam, so you stumble not unheedfully.
Jul. Of all the fair resort of gentlemen That every day with parle encounter me, In thy opinion which is worthiest love?
Luc. Please you repeat their names, I'll show my mind
According to my shallow simple skill.
Jul. What think'st thou of the fair Sir Eglamour?
Luc. As of a knight well-spoken, neat and fine But, were I you, he never should be mine. Jul. What think'st thou of the rich Mercatio? Luc. Well of his wealth; but of himself, so so. Jul. What think'st thou of the gentle Proteus? Luc. Lord, Lord! to see what folly reigns in us! Jul. How now! what means this passion at his name?
Luc. Pardon, dear madam: 'tis a passing shame That I, unworthy body as I am,
Should censure thus on lovely gentlemen.
Jul. Why not on Proteus, as of all the rest? Luc. Then thus, of many good I think him best.
Jul. Your reason?
Luc. I have no other but a woman's reason: I think him so because I think him so. Jul. And would'st thou have me cast my love on him?
Luc. Ay, if you thought your love not cast away. Jul. Why, he of all the rest hath never mov'd
Jul. To Julia.' Luc.
Say, from whom?
That the contents will show. Jul. Say, say, who gave it thee?
Luc. Sir Valentine's page; and sent, I think, from Proteus.
He would have given it you, but I, being in the way,
Did in your name receive it: pardon the fault, I pray.
Jul. Now, by my modesty, a goodly broker! Dare you presume to harbour wanton lines? To whisper and conspire against my youth? Now, trust me, 'tis an office of great worth And you an officer fit for the place. There, take the paper: see it be return'd; Or else return no more into my sight.
Luc. To plead for love deserves more fee than hate.
Jul. Will ye be gone? Luc.
That you may ruminate. Exit. Jul. And yet I would I had o'erlook'd the letter. It were a shame to call her back again And pray her to a fault for which I chid her. 50 What fool is she, that knows I am a maid, And would not force the letter to my view! Since maids, in modesty, say 'No' to that Which they would have the profferer construe 'Ay.' Fie, fie! how wayward is this foolish love That, like a testy babe, will scratch the nurse And presently all humbled kiss the rod. How churlishly I chid Lucetta hence, When willingly I would have had her here: How angerly I taught my brow to frown, When inward joy enforc'd my heart to smile. My penance is, to call Lucetta back And ask remission for my folly past. What ho! Lucetta!
Luc. What would your ladyship? Jul. Is it near dinner-time? Luc. I would it were; That you might kill your stomach on your meat And not upon your maid.
Jul. What is 't that you took up so gingerly?
Jul. Why didst thou stoop then?
That I let fall.
To take a paper up And is that paper nothing? 71 Luc. Nothing concerning me. Jul. Then let it lie for those that it concerns. Luc. Madam, it will not lie where it concerns, Unless it have a false interpreter.
Jul. Some love of yours hath writ to you in rime. Luc. That I might sing it, madam, to a tune: Give me a note: your ladyship can set.
Jul. As little by such toys as may be possible: Best sing it to the tune of Light o' love.' Luc. It is too heavy for so light a tune.
O hateful hands, to tear such loving words!
I throw thy name against the bruising stones,
And thus I search it with a sovereign kiss.
Dinner is ready, and your father stays. Jul. Well, let us go.
Jul. Heavy! belike it hath some burthen then? SCENE III.-The Same. A Room in ANTONIO'S Luc. Ay; and melodious were it, would you sing it.
Jul. And why not you?
And yet methinks I do not like this tune. Jul. You do not?
Enter ANTONIO and PANTHINO.
Ant. Tell me, Panthino, what sad talk was that Wherewith my brother held you in the cloister? Pant. 'Twas of his nephew Proteus, your son. Ant. Why, what of him?
Pant. He wonder'd that your lordship Would suffer him to spend his youth at home,
He said that Proteus your son was meet,
Ant. Nor need'st thou much importune me to that
Whereon this month I have been hammering.
And perfected by the swift course of time.
Pant. 'Twere good, I think, your lordship sent him thither.
There shall he practise tilts and tournaments, 30 Hear sweet discourse, converse with noblemen, And be in eye of every exercise
Worthy his youth and nobleness of birth.
Ant. I like thy counsel; well hast thou advis'd:
I will dispatch him to the emperor's court.
With other gentlemen of good esteem
And in good time. Now will we break with him.
Pro. Sweet love! sweet lines! sweet life! Here is her hand, the agent of her heart; Here is her oath for love, her honour's pawn. O! that our fathers would applaud our loves, To seal our happiness with their consents. O heavenly Julia!
Ant. How now! what letter are you reading there?
Pro. May't please your lordship, 'tis a word or two
Of commendations sent from Valentine,
Ant. Lend me the letter; let me see what news. Pro. There is no news, my lord, but that he writes
How happily he lives, how well belov'd
Ant. My will is something sorted with his wish. Muse not that I thus suddenly proceed, For what I will, I will, and there an end.
I am resolv'd that thou shalt spend some time
SCENE I.-Milan. A Room in the DUKE's Palace.
Enter VALENTINE and SPEED.
Val. Ha! let me see: ay, give it me, it's mine;
Speed. Madam Silvia! Madam Silvia!
Speed. She is not within hearing, sir.
Speed. Your worship, sir; or else I mistook. 10
Val. Go to, sir. Tell me, do you know Madam
Speed. She that your worship loves?
Val. Why, how know you that I am in love? Speed. Marry, by these special marks. First, you have learned, like Sir Proteus, to wreathe your arms, like a malecontent; to relish a love. song, like a robin-redbreast; to walk alone, like one that had the pestilence; to sigh, like a school-boy that had lost his A B C; to weep, like a young wench that had buried her grandam ; to fast, like one that takes diet; to watch, like one that fears robbing; to speak puling, like a beggar at Hallowmas. You were wont, when you laughed, to crow like a cock; when you walked, to walk like one of the lions; when you fasted, it was presently after dinner; when you
Val. But, tell me, dost thou know my lady Silvia? Speed. She that you gaze on so as she sits at supper?
Val. Hast thou observed that? even she I mean. Speed. Why, sir, I know her not.
Val. Dost thou know her by my gazing on her, and yet knowest her not?
Speed. Is she not hard-favoured, sir? Val. Not so fair, boy, as well-favoured. Speed. Sir, I know that well enough. Val. What dost thou know? Speed. That she is not so fair, as, of you, wellfavoured.
Val. I mean that her beauty is exquisite, but her favour infinite.
Speed. That's because the one is painted and the other out of all count.
Val. How painted? and how out of count? Speed. Marry, sir, so painted to make her fair, that no man counts of her beauty.
Val. How esteemest thou me? I account of her beauty.
Speed. You never saw her since she was deformed.
Val. How long hath she been deformed?
Val. I have loved her ever since I saw her, and still I see her beautiful.
Speed. If you love her you cannot see her. 70 Val. Why?
Speed. Because Love is blind. O! that you had mine eyes; or your own eyes had the lights they were wont to have when you chid at Sir Proteus for going ungartered.
Val. What should I see then?
Speed. Your own present folly and her passing deformity; for he, being in love, could not see to garter his hose; and you, being in love, cannot see to put on your hose.
Val. Belike, boy, then you are in love; for last morning you could not see to wipe my shoes. Speed. True, sir; I was in love with my bed. I thank you, you swinged me for my love, which makes me the bolder to chide you for yours.
Val. In conclusion, I stand affected to her. Speed. I would you were set, so your affection would cease.
Val. Last night she enjoined me to write some lines to one she loves.
Speed. And have you?
Val. I have.
Speed. Are they not lamely writ?
Val. No, boy, but as well as I can do them. Peace! here she comes.
Speed. Aside. O excellent motion! O exceeding puppet! Now will he interpret to her.
Sil. Sir Valentine and servant, to you two thousand.
Speed. Aside. He should give her interest, and she gives it him.
Val. As you enjoin'd me, I have writ your letter Unto the secret nameless friend of yours; Which I was much unwilling to proceed in But for my duty to your ladyship. Sil. I thank you, gentle servant. "Tis very clerkly done.
Val. Now trust me, madam, it came hardly off; For being ignorant to whom it goes
I writ at random, very doubtfully.
Sil. Perchance you think too much of so much pains?
Val. No, madam: so it stead you, I will write, Please you command, a thousand times as much. And yet
Sil. A pretty period! Well, I guess the sequel; And yet I will not name it; and yet I care not; And yet take this again; and yet I thank you, Meaning henceforth to trouble you no more. Speed. Aside. And yet you will; and yet another yet.
Val. What means your ladyship? do you not like it?
Sil. Yes, yes the lines are very quaintly writ, But since unwillingly, take them again. Nay, take them.
Val. Madam, they are for you.
Sil. Ay, ay; you writ them, sir, at my request, But I will none of them; they are for you. I would have had them writ more movingly. Val. Please you, I'll write your ladyship