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The gracious queen, part of his theme, but no


Of his ill-ta'en suspicion! Come, Camillo;

I will respect thee as a father, if

Thou bear'st my life off hence: Let us avoid.

Cam. It is in mine authority, to command The keys of all the posterns: Please your highness To take the urgent hour: come, sir, away.




Enter Hermione, Mamillius, and Ladies.

Her. Take the boy to you: he so troubles me, 'Tis past enduring.

1 Lady.

Come, my gracious lord.

No, I'll none of you.

Shall I be your play-fellow?


1 Lady. Why, my sweet lord?

Mam. You'll kiss me hard; and speak to me

as if

I were a baby still.—I love you better.

2 Lady. And why so, my good lord? Mam.

Not for because

Your brows are blacker; yet black brows, they say, Become some women best; so that there be not

Too much hair there, but in a semicircle,

Or half-moon made with a pen.

2 Lady.

Who taught you this?

Mam. I learn'd it out of women's faces.-Pray


What colour are your eye-brows?

1 Lady.

Blue, my lord.

Mam. Nay, that's a mock: I have seen a lady's


That has been blue, but not her eye-brows.

2 Lady.

Hark ye:

The queen, your mother, rounds apace: we shall

Present our services to a fine new prince,

One of these days; and then you'd wanton with us, If we would have you.

1 Lady.

She is spread of late

Into a goodly bulk: Good time encounter her! Her. What wisdom stirs amongst you? Come, sir, now

I am for you again: Pray you, sit by us,

And tell 's a tale.


Merry, or sad, shall't be?

A sad tale's best for winter:

Her. As merry as you will.

I have one of sprites and goblins.

Let's have that, sir.

Her. Come on, sit down:-Come on, and do your best To fright me with your sprites; you're powerful

at it.

Mam. There was a man,


Nay, come, sit down; then on.

Mam. Dwelt by a church-yard;-I will tell it


Yon crickets shall not hear it.


And give't me in mine ear.

Come on then,

Enter Leontes, Antigonus, Lords, and Others.

Leon. Was he met there? his train? Camillo

with him?

1 Lord. Behind the tuft of pines I met them;


Saw I men scour so on their way: I ey'd them
Even to their ships.

How bless'd am I

In my just censure? in my true opinion?—
Alack, for lesser knowledge!-How accurs'd,
In being so blest!-There may be in the cup
A spider steep'd, and one may drink; depart,
And yet partake no venom; for his knowledge
Is not infected: but if one present

The abhorr'd ingredient to his eye, make known.
How he hath drank, he cracks his gorge, his sides,
With violent hefts:-I have drank, and seen the

Camillo was his help in this, his pander:-
There is a plot against my life, my crown;
All's true, that is mistrusted:—that false villain,
Whom I employ'd, was pre-employ'd by him:
He has discover'd my design, and I

Remain a pinch'd thing; yea, a very trick

For them to play at will:-How came the posterns So easily open?

1. Lord.

By his great authority;

Which often hath no less prevail'd than so,

On your command.


I know't too well.

Give me the boy; I am glad, you did not nurse


Though he does bear some signs of me, yet you Have too much blood in him.


What is this? sport?

Leon. Bear the boy hence, he shall not come

about her;

Away with him:-and let her sport herself

With that she's big with; for 'tis Polixenes

Has made thee swell thus.

Her. But I'd say, he had not,

And, I'll be sworn, you would believe my saying, Howe'er you lean to the nayword.


You, my lords,

Look on her, mark her well; be but about


say, she is a goodly lady, and

The justice of your hearts will thereto add,

'Tis pity, she's not honest, honourable:

Praise her but for this her without-door form, (Which, on my faith, deserves high speech,) and straight

The shrug, the hum, or ha; these petty brands, That calumny doth use:-O, I am out,

That mercy does; for calumny will sear

Virtue itself: these shrugs, these hums, and ha's, When you have said, she's goodly, come between, Ere you can say she's honest: But it be known, From him that has most cause to grieve it should be, She's an adultress.


Should a villain say so,

The most replenish'd villain in the world,
He were as much more villain: you, my lord,
Do but mistake.


You have mistook, my lady,
Polixenes for Leontes: O thou thing,
Which I'll not call a creature of thy place,
Lest barbarism, making me the precedent,
Should a like language use to all degrees,
And mannerly distinguishment leave out
Betwixt the prince and beggar!—I have said,
She's an adultress; I have said, with whom:

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