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Here, good my glass, take this for telling true;
A giving hand, though foul, fhall have fair praise.
When for fame's fake, for praife, an outward part,
The poor deer's blood, that my heart means no ill.
Prin. Only for praise; and praise we may afford
Boyet. Here comes a member of the common-wealth. Cof. God dig-you-den all; pray you, which is the head lady?
Prin. Thou shalt know her, fellow, by the reft that have no heads.
Cof. Which is the greatest lady, the higheft?
Prin. The thickest and the tallest.
Caft. The thickeit and the talleft? it is fo, truth is truth, An' your waste, miitrefs, were as flender as my wit, One o' thefe maids girdles for your walle fhould be fit. Are not you the chief woman? you are the thickest here. Prin. What's your will, Sir?? what's your will ?
Cof. I have a letter from Monfieur Biron, to one lady Rofaline...
Prin. O thy letter, thy letter: he's a good friend of mine. Stand afide, good bearer. Boyet, you can carves (15) Break up this capon.
Boyet. I am bound to ferve.
This letter is mistook, it importeth none here ;
Prin. We will read it, I fwear.
Break the neck of the wax, and every one give ear.
Y heaven, that thou art fair, is most infallible;
BY true, that thou art beauteous; truth itfelf, that
thou art lovely; more fairer than fair, beautiful than beauteous, truer than truth itself; have commiferation on thy heroical vaffal. The magnanimous and moft illuftrate King Cophetua fet eye upon the pernicious and indubitate beggar Zenelephon; and he it was that might rightly fay, veni, vidi, vici; which to anatomize in the vulgar, (O bafe and obfcure vulgar!) delicet, he came, faw, and overcame; he came, one; faw, two; overcame, three. Who came? the King. Why did he come? to fee. Why did he fee? to overcome. To whom came he? to the beggar, What fw he the beggar. Who overcame he? the beggar. The conclufion is victory; on whofe fide? the King's; the captive is inrich'd; on whofe fide? the beggar's,
(15) Boyet you can carwe :
Break up this Capon.] i. e. open this Letter.
Our Poet ufes this Metaphor, as the French do their Poulet; which fignifies both a young Fowl, and a Love-letter. Poulet, amatoria litera; fays Rickelet: and quotes from Voiture, Repondere au flus cbLigeant Poulet da Mionde; To reply to the moft obliging Letter in the World. The Italians ufe the fame manner of Expreflion, when they call a Love-Epiftle, una Pollicetta amorefa. I owed the Hint of this equivocal ufe of the Word to my ingenious Friend Mr. Bishop.
The catastrophe is a nuptial: on whofe fide ?the Kings no, on both in one, or one in both: I am the King, (for fo ftands the comparison) thou the beggar, for fo witneffeth thy lowlinefs. Shall I command thy love? I may. Shall I enforce thy love? I could. Shall 1 entreat thy love? I will. What fhalt thou exchange for rags robes; for tittles? titles: for thy felf? me. Thus expecting thy reply, I prophane my lips on thy foot, my eyes on thy picture, and my heart on thy every part.
Thine in the deareft defign of industry,
Don Adriano de Armado.
Thus doft thou hear the Nemean lion roar
'Gainst thee, thou lamb, that ftandeft at his prey; Submiffive fall his princely feet before,
And he from forage will incline to play.
But if thou ftrive (poor foul) what art thou then?
Prin. What plume of feathers is he, that indited this letter?
Prin. Thou, fellow, a word:
Who gave thee this letter?
Coft. I told you; my lord,
Prin. To whom fhould't thou give it?
Coft. From my lord to my lady.
Prin. From which lord, to which lady?
Coft. From my lord Beroun, a good mafter of mine,
To a lady of France, that he call'd Refaline.
Prin. Thou haft mistaken his letter. Come, lords, away. Here, fweet, put up this; twill be thine another day. [Exit Princess attended.
Bayer. Who is the shooter? who is the shooter?
Boyet. Ay, my continent of beauty.
Ref. Why, the that bears the bow. Finely put off. Boyet. My lady goes to kill horns: but if thou marry, Hang me by the neck, if horns that year miscarry. Finely put on.
Rof. Well then, I am the fhooter.
Ref. If we chufe by horns, yourself; come not near. Finely put on, indeed.
Mar. You ftill wrangle with her, Boyet, and fhe ftrikes at the brow.
Boyet. But the herself is hit lower. Have I hit her now? Rof. Shall I come upon thee with an old faying, that was a man when King Pippin of France was a little boy, as touching the hit it?
Boyet. So I may anfwer thee with one as old, that was a woman when Queen Guinover of Britain was a little wench, as touching the hit it.
Rof. Thou can't not hit it, hit it, hit it.
Thou can't not hit it, my good man.
Boyet. An' I cannot, cannot, cannot ;
An' I cannot, another can.
Coft. By my troth, moft pleasant; how both did fit it. Mar. A mark marvellous well fhot for they both did hit it.
Boyet. A mark? O, mark but that mark! a mark, fays my lady?
Let the mark have a prick in't; to meet at, if it may be. Mark. Wide o' th' bow-hand; i'faith, your hand is out. Coft. Indeed, a'muit fhoot nearer, or he'll ne'er hit the
Boyet. An' if my hand be out, then, belike, your hand
Coft. Then will he get the upfhot by cleaving the pin.
Mar. Come, come, you talk greafily; your lips grow
Caft. She's too hard for you at pricks, Sir, challenge her to bowl.
Boyet. I fear too much rubbing; good night my good [Exeunt all but Coftard. Coft. By my foul, a fwain; a moft fimple clown! Lord, Lord! how the ladies and I have put him down! O' my troth, moft fweet jefts, moft in-cony vulgar wit, When it comes fo fmoothly off, fo obfcenely; as it were, fo fit.
Armado o' th' one fide,-O, a most dainty man;
To fee him walk before a lady, and to bear her fan.
And his Page o' t'other fide, that handful of wit;
Ah, heav'ns! it is a most pathetical Nit.
[Exit Coftard. [Shouting within
Enter Dull, Holofernes, and Sir Nathaniel.
Nath. Very reverend fport, truly; and done in the teftimony of a good Confcience.
Hol. The deer was (as you know) fanguis, in blood; ripe as a pomwater, who now hangeth like a jewel in the ear of Calo, the fky, the welkin, the heav'n; and ahon falleth like a crab on the face of Terra," the foil, the land, the earth.
Nath. Truly, mafter Holofernes, the epithets are fweetly varied, like a fcholar at the leaft; but, Sir, I affure ye, it was a buck of the first head.
Hol. Sir Nathaniel, haud credo.
Dull. Twas not a haud credo, 'twas a pricket.
Hol. Moft barbarous intimation; yet a kind of infinuation, as it were in vin, in way of explication ; fucere, as it were, replication; or rather, oftentare, to fhow, as it were his inclination; after his undressed, unpolished, uneducated, unpruned, untrained, or rather