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Might bear him company in quest of him:
Whom whilst I labour'd of a love to see,
I hazarded the loss of whom I lov’d.
Five summers have I spent in farthest Greece,
Roaming clean through the bounds of Afra,
And, coasting homeward, came to Ephesus :
Hopeless to find, yet loath to leave unsought
Or that, or any place that harbours men.
But here must end the story of my life;
And happy were I in my timely death,
Could all my travels warrant me they live.

Duke. Hapless Ægeon, whom the fates have mark'd
To bear th’ extremity of dire mishap !
Now, trust me, were it not against our laws,
Which princes, would they, may not disannul,
Against my crown, my oath, my dignity,
My soul should sue as advocate for thee.
But, though thou art adjudged to the death,
And passed sentence may not be recall’d,
But to our honour's great disparagement,
Yet will I favour thee in what I can;
I therefore, merchant, limit thee this day
To seek thy life by beneficial help:
Try all thy friends thou hast in Ephesus,
Beg thou, or borrow, to make up the sum,
And live; if not, then thou art doom'd to die :
Jailer, now take him to thy custody.

Jail. I will, my lord.

Ægeon. Hopeless and helpless doth Ægeon wend, But to procrastinate his liveless end.


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The Street.


Enter Antipholis of Syracuse, a Merchant, and Dromio. Mer. HEREFORE give out, you are of Epidamnum,

Lest that your goods too soon be confiscate.
This very day a Syracusan merchant
Is apprehended for arrival here;
And, not being able to buy out his life,
According to the statute of the town,
Dies ere the weary fun set in the west:
There is your money that I had to keep.

Ant. Go, bear it to the centaur, where we host,
And stay there, Dromio, 'till I come to thee:
Within this hour it will be dinner-time,
"Till that I'll view the manners of the town,
Peruse the traders, gaze upon the buildings,
And then return, and sleep within mine inn;
For with long travel I am stiff and weary:

Get thee away.

[Exit Dromio.

Dro. Many a man would take you at your word, And go indeed, having so good a means.

Ant. A trusty villain, sir, that very oft, When I am dull with care and melancholy, Lightens my humour with his merry jests

. What, will you walk with me about the town, And then go to the inn, and dine with me?

Mer. I am invited, fir, to certain merchants,
Of whom I hope to make much benefit:
I crave your pardon. Soon at five o'clock,
Please you, I'll meet with you upon the mart,
And afterward confort with you 'till bed-time:
My present business calls me from you now.


Ant. Farewel 'till then; I will go lose myself, And wander up and down to view the city.

Mer. Sir, I commend you to your own content. (Ex. Mer.

Ant. He that commends me to mine own content,
Commends me to the thing I cannot get.
I to the world am like a drop of water,
That in the ocean seeks another drop;
Who, falling there to find his fellow forth,
Unfeen, inquisitive, confounds himself:
So I, to find a mother and a brother,
In quest of them, unhappy, lose myself.

Enter Dromio of Ephesus.
Here comes the almanack of my true date.
What now? how chance thou art return’d so soon?

E. Dro. Return’d so soon! rather approach'd too late:
The capon burns, the pig falls from the spit,
The clock has strucken twelve upon the bell;
Ay mistress made it one upon my cheek;
She is so hot because the meat is cold;
The meat is cold because you come not home;
You come not home because you have no stomach;
You have no stomach having broke your fast:
But we that know what 'tis to fast and pray,
Are penitent for your default to-day.

Ant. Stop in your wind, fir; tell me this, I pray,


have left the money that I gave you?
E. Dro. O, fix pence that I had o'wednesday last,
To pay the sadler for my mistress' crupper ?
The sádler had it, fir; I kept it not.

Ant. I am not in a sportive humour now;
Tell me, and dally not, where is the money?
We being strangers here, how dar’st thou trust


So great a charge from thine own custody?

E. Dro. I pray you, jest, fir, as you fit at dinner :
I from my mistress come to you in post;
If I return, I shall be poft indeed;
For she will score


upon my pate :
Methinks, your maw, like mine, should be your clock,
And strike you home without a messenger.

Ant. Come, Dromio, come, these jests are out of season Reserve them 'till a merrier hour than this: Where is the gold I gave in charge to thee?

E. Dro. To me, fir? why, you gave no gold to me.

Ant. Come on, fir knave, have done your foolishness, And tell me how thou hast dispos'd thy charge.

E. Dro. My charge was but to fetch you from the mart
Home to your house, the phenix, fir, to dinner;
My mistress and her sister stay for you.

Ant. Now, as I am a christian, answer me,
In what safe place you have bestow'd my money ;
Or I shall break that merry sconce of
That stands on tricks when I am undispos’d:
Where are the thousand marks thou hadft of me?

E. Dro. I have some marks of yours upon my pate;
Some of my mistress

' marks upon my shoulders ;
But not a thousand marks between you both.
If I should pay your worship those again,
Perchance, you will not bear them patiently.

Ant. Thy mistress' marks? what mistress, slave, haft thou ?

E. Dro. Your worship’s wife, my mistress at the phenix ; She that doth fast ’till you come home to dinner; And prays that


home to dinner. Ant. What, wilt thou flout me thus unto my face, Being forbid ? there, take you that, fir knave.

E. Dro. What mean you, fır? for god's sake, hold your hands; Nay, an you will not, sir, I'll take my heels.

Ant. Upon my life, by some device or other, The villain is o'er-raught of all my money.


sconce of yours,

you will hie

[Ex. Dromio.

They say, this town is full of cozenage;
As, nimble juglers, that deceive the eye;
Dark-working forcerers, that change the mind;
Soul-selling witches, that deform the body;
Disguised cheaters, prating mountebanks,
And many such like libertines of sin:
If it prove fo, I will be


the sooner. I'll to the centaur, to go seek this Nave; I greatly fear my money is not safe.



The House of Antipholis of Ephesus.

Enter Adriana, and Luciana.



(EITHER my husband, nor the slave return’d,

That in such hafte I sent to seek his master!
Sure, Luciana, it is two o'clock.

Luc. Perhaps, some merchant hath invited him,
And from the mart he's somewhere gone to dinner :
Good sister, let us dine, and never fret.
A man is master of his liberty :
Time is their master, and, when they see time,
They'll go, or come; if so, be patient, sister.

Adr. Why should their liberty than ours be more?
Luc. Because their business still lyes out o'door.
Adr. Look, when I serve him so, he takes it ill.
Luc. O, know, he is the bridle of your will.
Adr. There's none but affes will be bridled so.
Luc. Why, head-strong liberty is lash'd with wo.
There's nothing situate under heav'n's eye,
But hath its bound in earth, in sea, and sky:


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