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TWO GENTLEMEN OF VERONA.
SCENE I.-An open Place in Verona.
Enter VALENTINE and PROTEUS. Val. CEASE to persuade, my loving Proteus ; Home-keeping youth have ever homely wits : Wer't not, affection chains thy tender days To the sweet glances of thy honored love, I rather would entreat thy company, To see the wonders of the world abroad, Than living dully sluggardized at home, Wear out thy youth with shapeless idleness. But, since thou lov'st, love still, and thrive therein, Even as I would, when I to love begin.
Pro. Wilt thou begone? Sweet Valentine, adieu: Think on thy Proteus, when thou, haply, seest Some rare note-worthy object in thy travel: Wish me partaker in thy happiness, When thou dost meet good hap; and, in thy danger, If ever danger do environ thee, Commend thy grievance to my holy prayers, For I will be thy bead's-man, Valentine.
Val. And on a love-book pray for my success. Pro. Upon some book I love, I'll pray for thee.
Val. That's on some shallow story of deep love, How young Leander crossed the Hellespont.
Pro. That's a deep story of a deeper love; For he was more than over shoes in love.
Val. 'Tis true; for you are over boots in love, And yet you never swam the Hellespont. Pro. Over the boots ? nay, give me not the boots. Val. No, I will not, for it boots thee not. Pro.
Val. To be in love, where scorn is bought with groans;
Pro. So by your circumstance, you call me fool.
Val. Love is your master, for he masters you:
Pro. Yet writers say, As in the sweetest bud
Val. And writers say, As the most forward bud
Pro. And thither will I bring thee, Valentine.
Val. Sweet Proteus, no; now let us take our leave.
Pro. All happiness bechance to thee in Milan!
Speed. Twenty to one, then, he is shipped already; And I have played the sheep, in losing him.
Pro. Indeed a sheep doth very often stray, An if the shepherd be awhile away.
Speed. You conclude that my master is a shepherd then, and I a sheep?
Pro. I do.
Speed. Why then, my horns are his horns, whether I wake or sleep.
Pro. A silly answer, and fitting well a sheep.
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.
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? gav'st 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 labor.
Pro. Here's too small a pasture for such a store of muttons. Speed. If the ground be overcharged, you were best stick her. Pro. Nay, in that you are astray; 'twere best pound you.
Speed. Nay, sir, less than a pound shall serve me for carrying your letter.
Pro. You mistake; I mean the pound, a pinfold. Speed. From a pound to a pin? fold it over and over, 'Tis threefold too little for carrying a letter to your lover. Pro. But what said she ? did she nod ?
[SPEED nods. Speed. I. Pro. Nod, I! why, that's noddy. Speed. You mistook, sir. I say she did nod: and you ask me, if she did nod; and I say, I.
Pro. And that set together is — noddy.
Speed. Now you have taken the pains to set it together, take it for your pains.
Pro. No, no, you shall have it for bearing the letter. Speed. Well, I perceive I must be fain to bear with you. Pro. Why, sir, how do you bear with me?
Speed. Marry, sir, the letter very orderly; having nothing but the word, noddy, for my pains.
Pro. Beshrew me, but you have a quick wit.
Speed. Open your purse, that the money and the matter may be both at once delivered.
Pro. Well, sir, here is for your pains: What said she ?
Speed. Sir, I could perceive nothing at all from her; no, not so much as a ducat for delivering your letter: And being so hard to me that 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.
Pro. Go, go, begone, to save your ship from wreck; Which cannot perish, having thee aboard, Being destined to a drier death on shore: I must go send some better messenger; I fear my Julia would not deign my lines, Receiving them from such a worthless post. [Exeunt.
Garden of Julia's House. 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,
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;
Jul. What think'st thou of the rich Mercatio ?
Luc. Pardon, dear madam; 'tis a passing shame,
Jul. Why not on Proteus, as of all the rest ?
Luc. I have no other but a woman's reason;
Jul. And would'st thou have me cast my love on him?
Peruse this paper, madam.
That the contents will show. Jul. Say, say; who gave it thee? Luc. Sir Valentine's page; and sent, I think, from
Jul. Now, by my modesty, a goodly broker !
Luc. To plead for love deserves more fee than hate.
That you may ruminate. [Exit.