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Juliet. Must die to-morrow! o injurious law,
That respites me a life, whose very comfort
Is still a dying horror !
Prov. 'Tis pity of him.



The Palace.

Enter Angelo
. HEN I would pray and think, I think and

To sev’ral subjects: heav'n hath my empty words,
Whilft my intention, hearing not my tongue,
Anchors on Isabel : heav'n's in my mouth,
As if I did but only chew its name,
And in my heart the strong and swelling evil
Of my conception: the state whereon I study'd
Is, like a good thing being often read,
Grown fear'd and tedious; yea, my gravity,
Wherein (let no man hear me) I take pride,
Could I with boot change for an idle plume
Which the air beats for vain. O place! o form!
How often doft thou with thy case, thy habit,
Wrench awe from fools, and tie the wiser fouls
To thy false seeming! blood, thou art but blood :
Let's write good angel on the devil's horn;
Is't not the devil's creft? How now? who's there?

Enter Servant.
Serv. One Isabel, a fifter, asks access to you.
Ang. Teach her the way. O heav'ns! why does my

Thus muster to my heart, making both that
Unable for itself, and difpoffeffing
My other parts of necessary fitnefs?


So play the foolish throngs with one that swoons;
Come all to help him, and so stop the air
By which he should revive: and even so
The gen’ral subjects to a well-wish'd king
Quit their own part, and in obsequious fondness
Crowd to his presence, where their untaught love
Must needs appear offence. How now, fair maid?

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Enter Isabella.
Isab. I am come to know your pleasure.
Ang. That you might know it, would much better please me,
Than to declare what 'tis. He cannot live.
Isab. Ev’n so? — Heav'n keep you !

Ang. Yet may he live a while;
And, it may be, as long as you, or I :
Yet he must die.

Isab. Under your sentence?
Ang. Yea.

Ijab. When, I beseech you? that in his reprieve,
Longer or shorter, he may be so fitted
That his foul ficken not.

Ang. Hal fie, these filthy vices !’twere as good
To pardon him that hath from nature stol’n
A man already made, as to remit
Their faucy lewdness that do coin heav'n's image
In stamps that are forbid : 'tis all as just,
Falsely to take away a life true made,
As to put mettle in restrained means,
To make a false one.

Isab. 'Tis fet down fo in heav'n, but not in earth.

Ang. And say you so ? then I shall pose you quickly.
Which had you rather, that the most just law
Now took your brother's life ; or, to redeem him,
Give up your body to such sweet uncleanness


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Vol. I.



As she that he hath stain's ?

Jab. Sir, believe this,
I had rather give my body than my soul.

Ang. I talk not of your soul; our compell’d fins
Stand more for number than accoinpt.

Isab. How say you?

Ang. Nay, I'll not warrant that; for I can speak
Against the thing I say. Answer to this:
I, now the voice of the recorded law,
Pronounce a sentence on your brother's life :
Might there not be a charity in sin,
To save this brother's life?

Isab. Please you to do't,
I'll take it as a peril to my soul,
It is no sin at all, but charity.

Ang: Pleas'd you to do't at peril of your soul,
Were't equal poize of sin and charity ?

Isab. That I do beg his life, if it be fin,
Heav'n, let me bear it! you granting my suit,
If that be fin, I'll make’t my morning-pray’r
To have it added to the faults of mine,
And nothing of your answer.

Ang. Nay, but hear me:
Your sense pursues not mine: either you're ignorant,
Or seem so craftily; and that's not good.

Isab. Let me be ignorant, and in nothing good,
But graciously to know I am no better.

Àng. Thus wisdom wishes to appear most bright,
When it doth tax itself: as these black masks
Proclaim an enshield beauty ten times louder
Than beauty could display'd. But mark me well:
To be received plain I'll speak more gross;
Your brother is to die.

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Ifab. True.

Ang. Admit no other way to save his life,
(As I subscribe not that, nor any other)
But (in the loss of question) that you his sister,
Finding yourself desir’d of such a person,
Whose credit with the judge, or own great place,
Could fetch your brother from the manacles
Of the all-holding law; and that there were
No earthly mean to save him, but that either
You must' lay down the treasures of your body
To this supposed, or else let him suffer;
What would


Isab. As much for my poor brother as myself;
That is, were I under the terms of death,
Th'impression of keen whips I'd wear as rubies,
And strip myself to death as to a bed
That longing I've been fick for, ere I'd yield
My body up

to shame.
Ang. Then must your brother die.

Ifab. And ’twere the cheaper way;
Better it were a brother dy'd at once,
Than that a sister, by redeeming him,
Should die for ever.

Ang. Were not you then as cruel as the sentence That


have slander'd fo?
Isab. An ignominious ransom and free pardon
Are of two houses; lawful mercy, sure,
Is nothing kin to foul redemption.

Ang. You seem'd of late to make the law a tyrant,
And rather prov’d the sliding of
A merriment than a vice.

Isab. O, pardon me,
My lord; it very oft falls out, to have
What we would have, we speak not what we mean ::
I something do excuse the thing I hate,
For his advantage that I dearly love.

your brother


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Ang. We are all frail.

Isab. Else let my brother die, If not a feodary but only he Owe and succeed by weakness.

Ang. Nay, women are frail too.

Ifab. Ay, as the glasses where they view themselves;
Which are as easy broke as they make forms.
Women ! help, heav'n! men their creation mar
In profiting by them: nay, call us ten times frail ;
For we are soft as our complexions are,
And credulous to false prints.

Ang. I think it well;
And from this testimony of your own sex,
(Since, I suppose, we're made to be no stronger
Than faults may shake our frames) let me be bold;
I do arrest your words: be that you are,
That is, a woman; if you're more, you're none.

one, as you are well express’d By all external warrants, show it now, By putting on the destin'd livery.

Isab. I have no tongue but one; gentle my lord, Let me entreat you speak the former language.

Ang. Plainly conceive, I love you.

Ifab. My brother did love Juliet; And you tell me that he shall die for it.

Ang. He shall not, Isabel, if you give me love.

Isab. I know, your virtue hath a licence in't,
Which seems a little fouler than it is,
To pluck on others.

Ang. Believe me on mine honour,
My words exprefs my purpose.

Isab. Ha! little honour to be much believ'd,
And most pernicious purpose! seeming! seeming!
I will proclaim thee, Angelo; look for’t:
Sign me a present pardon for my brother,
Or with an out-stretch'd throat I'll tell the world


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