Sidebilder
PDF
ePub

Wear this for me; one out of suits with fortune;

That could give more, but that her hand lacks means.— Shall we go, coz?

Cel.

Ay.-Fare you well, fair gentleman. Orl. Can I not say, I thank you? My better parts Are all thrown down, and that which here stands up, Is but a quintain, a mere lifeless block.

Ros. He calls us back; my pride fell with my fortunes; I'll ask him what he would. Did you call, sir?Sir, you have wrestled well, and overthrown

More than your enemies.

Cel.

Ros. Have with you.

Will you go, coz?

1.- Fare you well.

[Exeunt ROSALIND and CELIA.

Orl. What passion hangs these weights upon my tongue? I cannot speak to her, yet she urged conference.

Re-enter LE BEAU.

O poor Orlando! Thou art overthrown;

Or Charles, or something weaker, masters thee.
Le Beau. Good sir, I do in friendship counsel you
To leave this place. Albeit you have deserved
High commendation, true applause, and love;
Yet such is now the duke's condition,
That he misconstrues all that you have done.
The duke is humorous; what he is, indeed,
More suits you to conceive, than me to speak of.
Orl. I thank you, sir; and, pray you, tell me this:
Which of the two was daughter of the duke,
That here was at the wrestling?

Le Beau. Neither his daughter, if we judge by manners;
But yet, indeed, the smaller is his daughter.
The other is daughter to the banished duke,
And here detained by her usurping uncle,
To keep his daughter company; whose loves
Are dearer than the natural bond of sisters.
But I can tell you that of late this duke
Hath ta'en displeasure 'gainst his gentle niece;
Grounded upon no other argument,

But that the people praise her for her virtues,
And pity her for her good father's sake;
And on my life, his malice 'gainst the lady
Will suddenly break forth.-Sir, fare you well;
Hereafter, in a better world than this,

I shall desire more love and knowledge of you.
Orl. I rest much bounden to you; fare you well!
[Exit LE BEAU.

Thus must I from the smoke into the smother;

From tyrant duke, unto a tyrant brother.-
But heavenly Rosalind!

SCENE III. A Room in the Palace.

Enter CELIA and ROSALIND.

[Exit.

Cel. Why, cousin; why, Rosalind; - Cupid have mercy! Not a word?

Ros. Not one to throw at a dog.

Cel. No, thy words are too precious to be cast away upon curs; throw some of them at me; come, lame me with

reasons.

Ros. Then there were two cousins laid up; when the one should be lamed with reasons, and the other mad without any.

Cel. But is all this for your father?

Ros. No, some of it for my child's father. O how full of briers is this working-day world!

Cel. They are but burs, cousin, thrown upon thee in holiday foolery; if we walk not in the trodden paths, our very petticoats will catch them.

Ros. I could shake them off my coat; these burs are in my heart.

Cel. Hem them away.

Ros. I would try; if I could cry hem, and have him. Cel. Come, come, wrestle with thy affections.

Ros. O, they take the part of a better wrestler than myself.

Cel. O, a good wish upon you! You will try in time, in despite of a fall.-But turning these jests out of service, let us talk in good earnest. Is it possible, on such a sudden, you should fall into so strong a liking with old sir Rowland's youngest son?

Ros. The duke, my father, loved his father dearly. Cel. Doth it therefore ensue, that you should love his son dearly? By this kind of chase, I should hate him, for my father hated his father dearly; yet I hate not Orlando. Ros. No, 'faith, hate him not, for my sake.

Cel. Why should I not? Doth he not deserve well? Ros. Let me love him for that; and do you love him, because I do. Look, here comes the duke.

Cel. With his eyes full of anger.

Enter DUKE FREDERICK, with Lords.

Duke F. Mistress, despatch you with your safest haste, And get you from our court.

Ros.

Duke F.

Me, uncle?

You, cousin;

Within these ten days if that thou be'st found
So near our public court as twenty miles,
Thou diest for it.

Ros.

I do beseech your grace,

Let me the knowledge of my fault bear with me.
If with myself I hold intelligence,

Or have acquaintance with mine own desires;
If that I do not dream, or be not frantic,
(As I do trust I am not,) then, dear uncle,
Never, so much as in a thought unborn,
Did I offend your highness.

Duke F.

Thus do all traitors;

If their purgation did consist in words,
They are as innocent as grace itself.-
Let it suffice thee, that I trust thee not.

Ros. Yet your mistrust cannot make me a traitor: Tell me whereon the likelihood depends.

Duke F. Thou art thy father's daughter; there's enough.
Ros. So was I when your highness took his dukedom;
So was I when your highness banished him.
Treason is not inherited, my lord;

Or, if we did derive it from our friends,
What's that to me? My father was no traitor,
Then, good my liege, mistake me not so much,
To think my poverty is treacherous.

Cel. Dear sovereign, hear me speak.

Duke F. Ay, Celia; we stayed her for your sake, Else had she with her father ranged along.

Cel. I did not then entreat to have her stay;
It was your pleasure and your own remorse.
I was too young that time to value her,
But now I know her: if she be a traitor,
Why so am I; we still have slept together,

Rose at an instant, learned, played, ate together,
And wheresoe'er we went, like Juno's swans,

Still we went coupled, and inseparable.

Duke F. She is too subtle for thee; and her smoothness,

Her very silence, and her patience,

Speak to the people, and they pity her.

Thou art a fool: she robs thee of thy name;

And thou wilt show more bright, and seem more virtuous, When she is gone. Then open not thy lips;

Firm and irrevocable is my doom

Which I have passed upon her; she is banished.
Cel. Pronounce that sentence then on me, my liege.

I cannot live out of her company.

Duke F. You are a fool.-You, niece, provide yourself; If you outstay the time, upon mine honor,

And in the greatness of my word, you die.

[Exeunt DUKE FREDERICK and Lords.
Cel. O my poor Rosalind! whither wilt thou go?
Wilt thou change fathers? I will give thee mine.
I charge thee, be not thou more grieved than I am.
Ros. I have more cause.

Cel.
Thou hast not, cousin;
Pr'ythee, be cheerful. Know'st thou not, the duke
Hath banished me, his daughter?

Ros.

That he hath not.

Cel. No? Hath not? Rosalind lacks then the love
Which teacheth me that thou and I are one.
Shall we be sundered? Shall we part, sweet girl?
No; let my father seek another heir.

Therefore devise with me how we may fly,
Whither to go, and what to bear with us;
And do not seek to take your change upon you,
To bear your griefs yourself, and leave me out;
For, by this heaven, now at our sorrows pale,
Say what thou canst, I'll go along with thee.
Ros. Why, whither shall we go?

Cel. To seek my uncle in the forest of Arden.
Ros. Alas, what danger will it be to us,
Maids as we are, to travel forth so far!
Beauty provoketh thieves sooner than gold.

Cel. I'll put myself in poor and mean attire,
And with a kind of umber smirch my face.
The like do you; so shall we pass along,
And never stir assailants.

Ros.
Were it not better,
Because that I am more than common tall,
That I did suit me all points like a man ?
A gallant curtle-axe upon my thigh,
A boar-spear in my hand; and (in my heart
Lie there what hidden woman's fear there will)
We'll have a swashing and a martial outside;
As many other mannish cowards have,

That do outface it with their semblances.

VOL. I. -38

2 z

Cel. What shall I call thee, when thou art a man? Ros. I'll have no worse a name than Jove's own page, And therefore, look you, call me Ganymede. But what will you be called?

Cel. Something that hath a reference to my state; No longer Celia, but Aliena.

Ros. But, cousin, what if we assayed to steal The clownish fool out of your father's court? Would he not be a comfort to our travel?

Cel. He'll go along o'er the wide world with me;
Leave me alone to woo him. Let's away,
And get our jewels and our wealth together;
Devise the fittest time, and safest way

To hide us from pursuit that will be made
After my flight. Now go we, in content,
To liberty, and not to banishment.

[Exeunt

ACT II.

SCENE I. The Forest of Arden.

Enter Duke senior, AMIENS, and other Lords, in the dress of Foresters.

Duke S. Now, my co-mates, and brothers in exíle,
Hath not old custom made this life more sweet
Than that of painted pomp? Are not these woods
More free from peril than the envious court?
Here feel we not the penalty of Adam,
The seasons' difference; as the icy fang,
And churlish chiding of the winter's wind,
Which when it bites and blows upon my body,
Even till I shrink with cold, I smile, and say,-
This is no flattery; these are counsellors,
That feelingly persuade me what I am.
Sweet are the uses of adversity;

Which, like the toad, ugly and venomous,
Wears yet a precious jewel in his head;
And this our life, exempt from public haunt,

Finds tongues in trees, books in the running brooks,
Sermons in stones, and good in every thing.

Ami. I would not change it, Happy is your grace,
That can translate the stubbornness of fortune
Into so quiet and so sweet a style.

« ForrigeFortsett »