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Hol. Let me hear a staff, a stanza, a verse; Lege, domine. Nath. If love make me forsworn, how shall I swear
to love? Ah, never faith could hold, if not to beauty vowed ! Though to myself forsworn, to thee I'll faithful prove; Those thoughts to me were oaks, to thee like osiers
bowed. Study his bias leaves, and makes his book thine eyes; Where all those pleasures live, that art would com
prehend: If knowledge be the mark, to know thee shall suffice; Well learned is that tongue, that well can thee com
mend: All ignorant that soul, that sees thee without wonder; (Which is to me some praise, that I thy parts ad
mire;) Thy eye Jove's lightning bears, thy voice his dreadful
thunder, Which, not to anger bent, is music, and sweet fire. Celestial, as thou art, oh pardon, love, this wrong, That sings heaven's praise with such an earthly tongue!
Hol. You find not the apostrophes, and so miss the accent: let me supervise the canzonet. Here are only numbers ratified; but, for the elegancy, facility, and golden cadence of poesy, caret. Ovidius Naso was the man: and why, indeed, Naso; but for smelling out the odoriferous flowers of fancy, the jerks of invention ? Imitari, is nothing: so doth the hound his master, the ape his keeper, the tired horse his rider.—But, damosella virgin, was this directed to you?
Jaq. Ay, sir, from one Monsieur Biron, one of the strange queen's lords.
Hol. I will overglance the superscript. To the snowwhite hand of the most beauteous Lady Rosaline. I will look again on the intellect of the letter, for the nomination of the party writing to the person written unto :
Your ladyship’s in all desired employment, Biron. Sir Nathaniel, this Biron is one of the votaries with the king; and here he hath frained a letter to a sequent of the stranger queen's, which, accidentally, or by the way of progression, hath miscarried.-Trip and go, my sweet; deliver this paper into the royal hand of the king; it may concern much: Stay not thy compliment; I forgive thy duty; adieu.
Jaq. Good Costard, go with me.-Sir, God save your life! Cost. Have with thee, my girl.
[Ereunt Cost. and Jag. Nath. Sir, you have done this in the fear of God, very religiously; and, as a certain father saith
Hol. Sir, tell not me of the father, I do fear colourable colours. But, to return to the verses; Did they please you, sir Nathaniel ?
Nath. Marvellous well for the pen.
Hol. I do dine to-day at the father's of a certain pupil of mine; where if, before repast, it shall please you to gratify the table with a grace, I will, on my privilege I have with the parents of the foresaid child, or pupil, undertake your ben venuto; where I will prove those verses to be very unlearned, neither savouring of poetry, wit, nor invention : I beseech your society. .
Nath. And thank you too: for society, (saith the text,) is the happiness of life.
Hol. And, certes, the text most infallibly concludes
it.—Sir, [To Dull.] I do invite you too; you shall not say me, nay: pauca verba. Away; the gentles are at their game, and we will to our recreation. [Excunt.
SCENE III.- Another part of the same.
Enter Biron, with a paper. Biron. The king he is hunting the deer; I am coursing myself: they have pitch'd a toil; I am toiling in a pitch; pitch that defiles; defile! a foul word. Well, Set thee down, sorrow! for so, they say, the fool said, and so say I, and I the fool. Well proved, wit! By the lord, this love is as mad as Ajax : it kills sheep; it kills me, I a sheep: Well proved again on my side! I will not love: if I do, hang me; i'faith, I will not. O, but her eye,-by this light, but for her eye, I would not love her; yes, for her two eyes. Well, I do nothing in the world but lie, and lie in my throat. By heaven, I do love: and it hath taught me to rhyme, and to be melancholy; and here is part of my rhyme, and here my melancholy. Well, she hath one o' my sonnets already; the clown bore it, the fool sent it, and the lady hath it: sweet clown, sweeter fool, sweetest lady! By the world, I would not care a pin if the other three were in: Here comes one with a paper; God give bim grace to groan!
[Gets up into a tree.
Enter the King, with a paper. King. Ah me! Biron. [ Aside.] Shot, by heaven !- Proceed, sweet Cupid; thou hast thump'd him with thy bird-bolt under the left pap:- l’faith, secrets.
King. [Reads.] So sweet a kiss the golden sun gives not
To those fresh morning drops upon the rose,
The night of dew that on my cheeks down flows :
Through the transparent bosom of the deep,
Thou shin'st in every tear that I do weep:
So ridest thou triúmphing in my woe; Do but behold the tears that swell in me,
And they thy glory through thy grief will show : But do not love thyself; then thou wilt keep My tears for glasses, and still make me weep. O queen of queens, how far dost thou excel! No thought can think, nor tongue of mortal tell.How shall she know my griefs? I'll drop the paper; Sweet leaves, shade folly. Who is he comes here?
r tonguel'll drop thes here?
Enter LONGAVILLE, with a paper. What, Longaville ! and reading! listen, ear. Biron. Now, in thy likeness, one more fool, appear!
[ Aside. Long. Ah me! I'am forsworn. Biron. Why, he comes in like a perjure, wearing pa
pers. King. In love, I hope ; Sweet fellowship in shame!
[Aside. Biron. One drunkard loves another of the name.
[Aside. Long. Am I the first that have been perjur'd so ? Biron. [Aside.] I could put thee in comfort; not by
two, that I know : Thou mak’st the triumviry, the corner-cap of society, The shape of love's Tyburn that hangs up simplicity.
Long. I fear, these stubborn lines lack power to move: O sweet Maria, empress of my love! These numbers will I tear, and write in prose. Biron. [Aside.] O, rhymes are guards on wanton Cu
pid's hose : Disfigure not his slop.
Long. This same shall go.- [He reads the sonnet. Did not the heavenly rhetorick of thine eye
('Gainst whom the world cannot hold argument,) Persuade my heart to this false perjury?
Vows, for thre broke, deserve not punishment. A woman I forswore; but, I will prove,
Thou being a goddess, I forswore not thee: My vow was earthly, thou a heavenly love ;
Thy grace, being gain'd, cures all disgrace in me. Vows are but breath, and breath a vapour is:
Then thou, fair sun, which on my earth dost shine, Exhalst this vapour vow; in thee it is:
If broken then, it is no fault of mine; If by me broke, What fool is not so wise, l'o lose an oath to win a paradise ? Biron. [ Aside.] This is the liver vein, which makes
fesh a deity; A green goose, a goddess: pure, pure idolatry. God amend us, God amend ! we are much out o’the way.