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Ifab. Alas! alas !
Why, all the souls that were, were forfeit once;
And he that might the vantage best have took,
Found out the remedy. How would you be,
If he, which is the top of judgment, should
But judge you as you are? o, think on that,
And mercy then will breathe within your lips,
Like man new made.
Ang. Be you content, fair maid;
It is the law, not I, condemns your brother.
Were he my kinsman, brother, or my son,
It should be thus with him; he dies to-morrow.
Isab. To-morrow? o, that's sudden! Spare him, spare him.
He's not prepar’d for death: even for our kitchins
We kill the foul of season; serve we heav'n
With less respect than we do minister
To our gross selves? good, good my lord, bethink you:
Who is it that hath dy'd for this offence?
There's many have committed it.
Lucio. Ay, well said. Ang': The law hath not been dead, though it hath Nept: Those many had not dar’d to do that evil, If the first man that did th’edict infringe Had answer'd for his deed. Now ’tis awake, Takes note of what is done, and, like a prophet, Looks in a glass which shows that future evils, Or new, or by remiffness new conceiv’d, And so in progress to be hatch'd and born, Are now to have no successive degrees, But, ere they live, to end.
Isab. Yet show some pity.
Ang. I show it most of all when I show justice;
For then I pity those I do not know,
Which a dimiss’d offence would after gall;
And do him right, that, answering one foul wrong,
Lives not to act another. Then be satisfy'd;
Your brother dies to-morrow; be content.
Isab. So you must be the first that gives this sentence,
And he that suffers : o, 'tis excellent
To have a giant's strength; but tyrannous
To use it like a giant.
Lucio. That's well said.
Isab. Could great men thunder
As Jove himself does, Jove would ne'er be quiet;
For every pelting, petty officer
Incessantly would use his heav'n for thunder ;
Nothing but thunder : merciful, sweet heav'n!
Thou rather with thy sharp and sulph'rous bolt
Split'st the unwedgeable and gnarled oak,
Than the soft myrtle : 0, but man, proud man,
Dress’d in a little brief authority,
(Most ignorant of what he's most assur’d,
His glassy essence) like an angry ape,
Plays such fantastick tricks before high heav'n,
As makes the angels weep; who with our spleens
Would all themselves laugh mortal.
Lucio. O, to him, to him, wench; he will relent;
He's coming: I perceive't.
Prov. Pray heav'n, she win him!
Isab. We cannot weigh our brother with yourself: Great men may jest with faints ; 'tis wit in them, But, in the less, foul profanation.
Lucio. Thou’rt right, girl; more o' that.
Isab. That in the captain's but a cholerick word,
Which in the soldier is flat blasphemy.
Lucio. Art thou advis'd o’that? more on't, yet more.
Ang. Why do you put these sayings upon me?
Ifab. Because authority, though it err like others,
Hath yet a kind of medicine in itself,
That skins the vice o' th’top: go to your bosom,
Knock there, and ask your heart what it doth know
That's like my brother's fault; if it confess
A natural guiltiness, such as is his,
Let it not found a thought upon your tongue
Against my brother's life.
Ang. She speaks, and 'tis
Such sense, that my sense bleeds with’t. Fare you well.
Isab. Gentle my lord, turn back.
Ang. I will bethink me: come again to-morrow.
Isab. Hark how I'll bribe you: good my lord, turn back.
Ang. How? bribe me?
Isab. Ay, with such gifts that heav'n shall share with you.
Lucio. You had marr'd all else.
Isab. Not with fond shekles of the tested gold,
Or stones, whose rate is either rich or poor
As fancy values them; but with true prayers,
That shall be up at heav'n, and enter there,
Ere sun rise: prayers from preserved fouls,
From fasting maids whose minds are dedicate
To nothing temporal.
Ang. Well; come to-morrow.
Isab. Heav'n keep your honour safe!
Ang. Amen! I say:
[afide. For I am that way going to temptation, Where prayers cross.
Ifab. At what hour to-morrow
Shall I attend you ?
Ang. At any time 'fore noon.
Ifab. 'Save your honour !. [Exeunt Lucio and Isabella.
Ang. From thee; even from thy virtue !
What's this ? what's this? is this her fault, or mine?
The tempter, or the tempted, who fins most?
Not she; nor doth she tempt; but it is 1,
That lying by the violet in the sun,
Do as the carrion does, not as the flower,
Corrupt with virtuous season. Can it be,
That modesty may more betray our sense,
Than woman's lightness ? having waste ground enough,
Shall we desire to raze the sanctuary,
And pitch our evils there? o, fie, fie, fie !
What dost thou? or what art thou, Angelo ?
Dost thou desire her foully, for those things
That make her good ? O, let her brother live :
Thieves for their robbery have authority,
When judges steal themselves. What! do I love her,
That I desire to hear her speak again,
And feast upon her eyes? what is't I dream on?
O cunning enemy, that to catch a saint
With faints doft bait thy hook ! most dangerous
Is that temptation that doth goad us on
To fin in loving virtue; ne'er could the strumpet,
With all her double vigour, art and nature,
Once stir my temper; but this virtuous maid
Subdues me quite : ev’n’till this very now,
When men were fond, I smil'd, and wonder'd how. [Exit.
Enter Duke habited like a friar, and Provost. Duke. *H
AIL to you, provost I so, I think, you are.
Prov. I am the provost; what's your will, good friar i Duke. Bound by my charity, and my blest order, I come to visit the afflicted spirits Here in the prison; do me the common right To let me see them, and to make me know The nature of their crimes; that I may minister To them accordingly. Prov. I would do more than that, if more were needful.
Look, here comes one; a gentlewoman of mine,
Who falling in the flaws of her own youth,
Hath blister'd her report: she is with child,
And he that got it, sentenc'd: a young man
More fit to do another such offence,
Than die for this.
Duke. When must he die?
Prov. As I do think, to-morrow.
I have provided for you ; stay a while,
[To Juliet. shall be conducted. Duke. Repent you, fair one, of the fin you carry? Juliet. I do; and bear the shame most patiently. Duke. I'll teach
you shall arraign your conscience, And try your penitence if it be found, Or hollowly put on.
Juliet. I'll gladly learn.
Duke. Love you the man that.wrong’d you ?
Juliet. Yes, as I love the woman that wrong’d him.
Duke. So then, it seems, your most offenceful act
Was mutually committed.
Duke. Then was your fin of heavier kind than his.
Juliet. I do confess it, and repent it, father.
Duke. 'Tis meet so, daughter ; but repent you not
As that the sin hath brought you to this shame?
Which sorrow's always tow’rds ourselves, not heaven,
Showing we'd not seek heaven, as we love it,
But as we stand in fear.
Juliet. I do repent me as it is an evil,
And take the shame with joy.
Duke, 'Tis well, there rest.
Your partner, as I hear, must die to-morrow,
And I am going with instruction to him ;
So grace go with you! benedicite !