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OATHS. OBSTINACY.-OFFENCE.

This, in the name of heav'n, I promise here:
The which, if he be pleased I shall perform,
I do beseech your Majesty, may salve
The long-grown wounds of my intemperance:
If not, the end of life cancels all bonds,
And I will die a hundred thousand deaths,
Ere break the smallest parcel of this vow.

OBSTINACY.

You may as well go stand upon the beach,
And bid the main flood bate his usual height;
You may as well use question with the wolf,
Why he hath made the ewe bleat for the lamb;
You may as well bid the mountain pines

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wag their high tops, and to make no noise,
When they fretted with the gusts of heaven;
You may as well do any thing most hard,

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As seek to soften that (than which what's harder?) His Jewish heart!

You may as well

Forbid the sea for to obey the moon,

As or, by oath, rémove, or counsel, shake,

The fabrick of his folly.

But, out, affection!

All bond and privilege of nature, break!
Let it be virtuous, to be obstinate.

OFFENCE.

All 's not offence that indiscretion finds,

And dotage terms, so.

The very

head and front of my offending

Hath this extent, no more.

In such a time as this, it is not meet

That every nice offence should bear its comment.

For, well you know, we of th' offending side
Must keep aloof from strict arbitrement :

And stop all sight-holes, every loop, from whence
The eye of reason may pry in upon us.

What is my offence?

Where is the evidence that doth accuse me?
What lawful quest have given their verdict up
Unto the frowning judge ?

If

my offence be of such mortal kind,

That neither service past, nor present sorrows,
Nor purpos'd merit in futurity,

Can ransom me into his love again,

But to know so must be my

benefit ;

So, shall I clothe me in a forc'd content,
And shut myself up in some other course,
To fortune's alms.

OMENS.

The owl shrieked at thy birth, an evil sign;
The night-crow cried, aboding luckless time;
Dogs howl'd, and hideous tempest shook down trees;
The raven, rook'd her on the chimney's top,
And chattering pies in dismal discords sung.
Thy mother felt more than a mother's pain,
And yet brought forth less than a mother's hope.

Teeth hadst thou in thy head, when thou wast born,
To signify-thou cam'st to bite the world.

The sun will not be seen to-day; The sky doth frown and lour upon our army. I would, these dewy tears were from the ground. Not shine to-day! Why, what is that to me, More than to Richmond! for the self-same heaven, That frowns on me, looks sadly upon him.

OPPORTUNITY.

There is a tide in the affairs of men,
Which, taken at the flood, leads on to fortune;
Omitted, all the voyage of their life

Is bound in shallows, and in miseries,
On such a full sea are we now afloat;
And we must take the current when it serves,
Or lose our ventures.

I find my zenith doth depend upon
A most auspicious star; whose influence
If now I court not, but omit, my fortunes
Will ever after droop.

A little fire is quickly trodden out;
Which, being suffer'd, rivers cannot quench,

Our hands are full of business: let's away;
Advantage feeds them fat, while men delay.

The means that heaven yields must be embrac'd,
And not neglected; else, if heaven would,
And we will not, heaven's offer we refuse;
The proffer'd means of succour and redress.

He was not taken well; he had not din'd:
The veins unfill'd, our blood is cold, and then
We pout upon the morning, are unapt
To give or to forgive: but when we have stuff'd
These pipes and these conveyances of our blood
With wine and feeding, we have suppler souls
Than in our priest-like fasts,

ORNAMENT.

The world is still deceiv'd with ornament.
In law, what plea so tainted and corrupt,

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But, being season'd with a gracious voice,
Obscures the show of evil? In religion,
What damned error, but some sober brow
Will bless it, and approve it with a text,
Hiding the grossness with fair ornament.

Ornament is but the guiled shore
To a most dangerous sea; the beauteous scarf
Veiling an Indian beauty; in a word,
The seeming truth which cunning times put on
To entrap the wisest.

P

PARTING.

Farewell! God knows, when we shall meet again.
I have a faint cold fear thrills through my veins,
That almost freezes up the heat of life.

Portia, adieu! I have too griev'd a heart

To take a tedious leave.

Good night, good night! parting is such sweet sorrow,
That I shall say good night, till it be to-morrow.

'Tis almost morning, I would have thee gone :
And yet no further than a wanton's bird;
Who lets it hop a little from her hand,
Like a poor prisoner in his twisted gyves,
And with a silk thread plucks it back again,
So loving-jealous of his liberty.

Wilt thou be gone? it is not yet near day :
It was the nightingale, and not the lark,
That pierc'd the fearful hollow of thine ear;
Nightly she sings on your pomegranate tree :
Believe me, love, it was the nightingale.

Hist! Romeo, hist!-O for a falconer's voice,
To lure this tassel-gentle back again!

Art thou gone so ? my love! my lord! my
I must hear from thee every day i' the hour,
For in a minute there are many days:
O! by this count I shall be much in years,
Ere I again behold my Romeo!

friend!

What! gone without a word?

Ay, so true love should do: it cannot speak;
For truth hath better deeds, than words, to grace it.

I would have broke mine eye-strings; crack'd them, but

To look upon him; till the diminution

Of space had pointed him sharp as my needle:
Nay, follow'd him, till he had melted from

The smallness of a gnat to air; and then
Have turn'd mine eye,
and wept.

I did not take my leave of him, but I had
Most pretty things to say: ere I could tell him,
How I would think on him, at certain hours,

Such thoughts, and such; or I could make him swear
The shes of Italy should not betray

Mine interest, and his honour; or ere I could

Give him that parting kiss, which I had set

Betwixt two charming words, comes in my father,

And like the tyrannous breathing of the north,
Shakes all our buds from growing.

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