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JULIA, a Lady of Verona, beloved by Proteus.
SCENE. Sometimes in VERONA; sometimes in MILAN; and on the
frontiers of MANTUA.
Enter VALENTINE and PROTEUS. Val. CEASE to persuade, my loving Proteus; Home-keeping youth have ever homely wits : Wer't not, affection chains thy tender days To the sweet glances of thy honored love, I rather would entreat thy company, To see the wonders of the world abroad, Than living dully sluggardized at home, Wear out thy youth with shapeless idleness. But, since thou lov'st, love still, and thrive therein, Even as I would, when I to love begin.
Pro. Wilt thou begone? Sweet Valentine, adieu Think on thy Proteus, when thou, haply, seest Some rare note-worthy object in thy travel : Wish me partaker in thy happiness, When thou dost meet good hap; and, in thy danger, If ever danger do environ thee, Commend thy grievance to my holy prayers, For I will be thy bead's-man, Valentine.
Val. And on a love-book pray for my success. Pro. Upon some book I love, I'll pray for thee.
Val. That's on some shallow story of deep love, How young Leander crossed the Hellespont.
Pro. That's a deep story of a deeper love; For he was more than over shoes in love.
1 The allusion is to Marlow's poem of Hero and Leander.
To Milan, let me hear from thee by letters,
Pro. All happiness bechance to thee in Milan!
[Exit VALENTINE. Pro. He after honor hunts, I after love. He leaves his friends, to dignify them more; I leave myself, my friends, and all for love. Thou, Julia, thou hast metamorphosed me; Made me neglect my studies, lose my time, War with good counsel, set the world at nought; Made wit with musing weak, heart sick with thought.
Enter SPEED. Speed. Sir Proteus, save you : Saw you my master ? Pro. But now he parted hence, to embark for
Milan. Speed. Twenty to one, then, he is shipped already; And I have played the sheep, in losing him.
Pro. Indeed a sheep doth very often stray, An if the shepherd be awhile away.
Speed. You conclude that my master is a shepherd then, and I a sheep?
Pro. I do.
Speed. Why then, my horns are his horns, whether I wake or sleep.
Pro. A silly answer, and fitting well a sheep.
Speed. The shepherd seeks the sheep, and not the sheep the shepherd; but I seek my master, and my master seeks not me: therefore I am no sheep.
1 The construction of this passage is, “ Let me hear from thee by letters to Milan."
2 In Warwickshire, and some other counties, a sheep is pronounced a ship.