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By east, west, north, and south, I spread my con
quering might; My 'scutcheon plain declares that I am Alisander. Boyet. Your nose says no, you are not; for it
stands too right. Biron. Your nose smells no, in this, most ten
der-smelling knight. Prin. The conqueror is dismayed: proceed,
King. Here is like to be a good presence of worthies. He presents Hector of Troy; the swain, Pompey the great; the parish curate, Alexander; Armado's page, Hercules; the pedant, Judas Maccabæus. And if these four worthies in their first show thrive, These four will change habits, and present the
other five. Biron. There is five in the first show. King. You are deceived, 't is not so.
Biron. The pedant, the braggart, the hedgepriest, the fool, and the boy : A bare throw at novum; and the whole world
again Cannot prick out five such, take each one in his
vein. King. The ship is under sail, and here she
comes amain. [Seats brought for the KING, PRINCESS, fc.
Pageant of the Nine Worthies.
Enter Costard, armed, for Pompey.
CostARD. I Pompey am, —
Boyet. You lie, you are not he.
NATHANIEL. When in the world I lived, I was the world's com
mander ;Boyet. Most true, 't is right; you were so,
Alisander. Biron. Pompey the great, Cost. Your servant, and Costárd. Biron. Take away the conqueror, take away
Alisander. Cost. O, sir [to NathanieL), you have overthrown Alisander the conqueror! You will be scraped out of the painted cloth for this : your lion, that holds his poll-ax sitting on a closestool, will be given to Ajax: he will be the ninth worthy. A conqueror, and afеard to speak! run away for shame, Alisander. [NATHANIEL retires.] There, an't shall please you: a foolish mild man; an honest man, look you, and soon dashed! He is a marvellous good neighbour, in sooth; and a very good bowler: but for Alisander, alas, you see how 'tis; a little o'erparted.—But there are worthies a coming will speak their mind in some other sort.
Prin. Stand aside, good Pompey. Enter HOLOFERNES, armed, for Judas, and Moty,
armed, for Hercules.
Whose club killed Cerberus, that three-headed
With libbard's head on knee. Biron. Well said, old mocker; I must needs be friends with thee.
Dum. The great.
-Pompey surnamed the great:
foe to sweat: And travelling along this coast, I here am come by
chance, And lay my arms before the legs of this sweet lass of
I had done.
Cost. 'T is not so much worth: but I hope I was perfect: I made a little fault in “ great."
Biron. My hat to a halfpenny, Pompey proves the best worthy.
And, when he was a babe, a child, a shrimp,
Thus did he strangle serpents in his manus :
[Exit Moth. Dum. A Judas!
Hol. Not Iscariot, sir :
Dum. Judas Maccabæus clipt, is plain Judas.
HOLOFERNES. Judas I am,
Enter Nathaniel, armed, for Alexander.
NATHANIEL. When in the world I lived, I was the world's com
Dum. The more shame for
Judas, Hol. What mean you, sir? Boyet. To make Judas hang himself, Hol. Begin, sir; you are my elder. Biron. Well followed : Judas was hanged on
an elder, Hol. I will not be put out of countenance. Biron. Because thou hast no face. Hol. What is this? Boyet. A cittern head. Dum. The head of a bodkin. Biron. A death's face in a ring. Long. The face of an old Roman coin, scarce
Dum. A gilt nutmeg.
Gave Hector a gift, the heir of Ilion:
From morn till night, out of his pavilion.
Dum. That mint.
Long. I must rather give it the rein ; for it runs against Hector.
Dum. Ay, and Hector's a greyhound.
Arm. The sweet war-man is dead and rotten; sweet chucks, beat not the bones of the buried : when he breathed, he was a man
an—but I will forward with my device. Sweet royalty [to the Princess], bestow on me the sense of hearing.
[BIROŇ whispers Costard. Prin. Speak, brave Hector; we are much de
Boyet. The pummel of Cæsar's faulchion.
drawer : And now, forward; for we have put thee in coun
tenance. Hol. You have put me out of countenance. Biron. False; we have given thee faces. Hol. But you have outfaced them all. Biron. An thou wert a lion, we would do so.
Boyet. Therefore, as he is an ass, let him go. And so adieu, sweet Jude! nay, why dost thou
stay? Dum. For the latter end of his name. Biron. For the ass to the Jude; give it him :
Jud-as, away. Hol. This is not generous, not gentle, not
humble. Boyet. A light for Monsieur Judas: it grows
dark, he may stumble. Prin. Alas, poor Maccabæus, how hath he been
Enter ARMADO, armed, for Hector. Biron. Hide thy head, Achilles; here comes Hector in arms.
Dum. Though my mocks come home by me, I will now be merry.
King. Hector was but a Trojan in respect of this.
Dum. He's a god or a painter; for he makes faces.
Cost. The party is gone, fellow Hector, she is gone; she is two months on her way.
Arm. What meanest thou?
Cost. Faith, unless you play the honest Trojan, the
poor wench is cast away: she's quick; the child brags in her belly already; 'tis yours. Arm. Dost thou infamonise me among poten
tates? thou shalt die. Cost. Then shall Hector be whipped, for Jaquenetta that is quick by him; and hanged, for Pompey that is dead by him.
Dum. Most rare Pompey!
Biron. Greater than great, great, great, great Pompey! Pompey the huge!
Dum, Hector trembles.
Biron. Pompey is moved :--more Ates, more Ates; stir them on! stir them on!
Dum. Hector will challenge him.
Biron. Ay, if he have no more man's blood in 's belly than will sup a flea.
Arm. By the north pole, I do challenge thee.
I'll flash; I'll do it by the sword. I pray you, let me borrow my arms again.
Dumn. Room for the incensed worthies.
ARMADO. The armipotent Mars, of lances the almighty,
Gave Hector a gift,
Cost. I 'll do it in shirt.
Moth. Master, let me take you a button-hole lower. Do you not see, Pompey is uncasing for the combat? What mean you? you will lose your reputation.
Arm. Gentlemen and soldiers, pardon me; I will not combat in my shirt.
Dum. You may not deny it; Pompey hath made the challenge.
Arm. Sweet bloods, I both may and will.
Arm. The naked truth of it is, I have no shirt; I go woolward for penance.
Boyet. True, and it was enjoined him in Rome for want of linen: since when, I'll be sworn, he wore none, but a dishclout of Jaquenetta’s; and that a' wears next his heart, for a favour.
Enter MERCADE. Mer. God save you, madam!
Prin. Welcome, Mercade; But that thou interrupt st our merriment. Mer. I am sorry, madam; for the news I
bring Is heavy in my tongue. The king your father
Prin. Dead, for my life.
Biron. Worthies, away; the scene begins to cloud.
Arm. For mine own part, I breathe free breath : I have seen the day of wrong through the little hole of discretion, and I will right myself like a soldier. [Exeunt Worthies.
King. How fares your majesty ?
Yet, since love's argument was first on foot,
of grief;— And by these badges understand the king. For your fair sakes have we neglected time, Played foul play with our oaths. Your beauty,
ladies, Hath much deformed us, fashioning our humours Even to the opposéd end of our intents : And what in us hath seemed ridiculous, As love is full of unbefitting strains ; All wanton as a child, skipping and vain; Formed by the eye, and therefore, like the eye, Full of strange shapes, of habits, and of forms, Varying in subjects as the eye doth roll To every varied object in his glance : Which party-coated presence of loose love Put on by us, if, in your heavenly eyes, Have misbecomed our oaths and gravities, Those heavenly eyes, that look into these faults, Suggested us to make. Therefore, ladies, Our love being yours, the error that love makes Is likewise yours: we to ourselves prove false, By being once false for ever to be true To those that make us both,-fair ladies, you: And even that falsehood, in itself a sin, Thus purifies itself, and turns to grace.
Prin. We have received your letters, full of love; Your favours, the ambassadors of love; And, in our maiden council, rated them At courtship, pleasant jest, and courtesy, As bombast, and as lining to the time: But more devout than this in our respects Have we not been; and therefore met your loves In their own fashion, like a merriment.
Dum. Our letters, madan, shewed much more
Long. So did our looks.
King. Now, at the latest minute of the hour, Grant us your
loves. Prin. A time, methinks, too short To make a world-without-end bargain in : No, no, my lord, your grace is perjured much, Full of dear guiltiness : and therefore, this,If for my love (as there is no such cause) You will do aught, this shall you do for me: Your oath I will not trust; but go with speed To some forlorn and naked hermitage, Remote from all the pleasures of the world; There stay, until the twelve celestial signs
Have brought about their annual reckoning.
King. If this, or more than this, I would deny,
To flatter up these powers of mine with rest, The sudden hand of death close up mine eye!
Hence ever, then, my heart is in thy breast. Biron. And what to me, my love, and what
to me? Ros. You must be purgéd too, your sins are
rank; You are attaint with faults and perjury: Therefore, if you my favour mean to get, A twelvemonth shall you spend, and never rest, But seek the weary beds of people sick.
Dum. But what to me, my love? but what to me? Kath. A wife !-A beard, fair health, and
honesty; With threefold love I wish you all these three.
Dum. O, shall I say, I thank you, gentle wife? Kath. Not so, my lord :- :-a twelvemonth and
a day I'll mark no words that smooth-faced wooers say: Come when the king doth to my lady come, Then, if I have much love, I'll give you some.
Dum. I 'll serve thee true and faithfully till then. Kath. Yet swear not, least you be forsworn
again. Long. What
Maria? Mar. At the twelvemonth's end, I'll change my black gown for a faithful friend. Long. I'll stay with patience; but the time is
long. Mar. The liker you; few taller are so young.
Biron. Studies my lady ? Mistress look on me, Behold the window of my heart, mine eye, What humble suit attends thy answer there : Impose some service on me for thy love.
Ros. Oft have I heard of you, my lord Birón, Before I saw you: and the world's large tongue Proclaims you for a man replete with mocks; Full of comparisons and wounding flouts ; Which you on all estates will execute, That lie within the mercy of your wit: To weed this wormwood from your fruitful brain,
And therewithal to win me, if you please
spirit, Whose influence is begot of that loose grace Which shallow laughing hearers give to fools. A jest's prosperity lies in the ear Of him that hears it, never in the tongue Of him that makes it. Then, if sickly ears, Deafed with the clamours of their own dear groans, Will hear your idle scorns, continue then, And I will have you, and that fault withal; But if they will not, throw away that spirit, And I shall find you empty of that fault, Right joyful of your reformation. Biron. A twelvemonth? Well, befal what will
befal, I'll jest a twelvemonth in an hospital. Prin. Ay, sweet my lord; and so I take my leave.
[To the King King. No, madam; we will bring you on your
way. Biron. Our wooing doth not end like an old
play; Jack hath not Jill: these ladies' courtesy Might well have made our sport a comedy. King. Come, sir, it wants a twelvemonth and
a day, And then 't will end.
Biron. That's too long for a play.
Arm. I will kiss thy royal finger, and take leave : I am a votary; I have vowed to Jaquenetta to hold the plough for her sweet love three years. But, most esteemed greatness, will you hear the dialogue that the two learned men have compiled, in praise of the owl and the cuckoo ? it should have followed in the end of our show.
King. Call them forth quickly; we will do so. Arm. Holla! approach.
Enter HOLOFERNES, NATHANIEL, Moth, Cos
TARD, and others. This side is Hiems, winter; this Ver, the spring; the one maintained by the owl, the other by the cuckoo. Ver, begin.
And lady-smocks all silver-white,
Do paint the meadows with delight;
And merry larks are ploughmen's clocks, When turtles tread, and rooks, and daws,
And maidens bleach their summer smocks ;
WINTER. When icicles hang by the wall,
And Dick the shepherd blows his nail, And Tom bears logs into the hall,
And milk comes frozen home in pail ; When blood is nipped, and ways be foul, Then nightly sings the staring owl,
And coughing drowns the parson's saw, And birds sit brooding in the snow,
And Marian's nose looks red and raw; When roasted crabs hiss in the bowl, Then nightly sings the staring owl,
Arm. The words of Mercury are harsh after the songs of Apollo. You that