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The Court of the Palace.

Enter Dion, Cleremont, and Thrasiline.

Cle. Nay, doubtless, 'tis true.


Ay; and 'tis the gods That raised this punishment, to scourge the King

With his own issue. Is it not a shame

For us that should write noble in the land,
For us that should be freemen, to behold

A man that is the bravery of his age,
Philaster, pressed down from his royal right
By this regardless King? and only look

And see the sceptre ready to be cast
Into the hands of that lascivious lady

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That lives in lust with a smooth boy, now to be

To yon strange prince, who, but that people please
To let him be a prince, is born a slave

In that which should be his most noble part,

His mind?


That man that would not stir with you

To aid Philaster, let the gods forget
That such a creature walks upon the earth!
Cle. Philaster is too backward in 't himself.
The gentry do await it, and the people,
Against their nature, are all bent for him,
And like a field of standing corn, that's moved
With a stiff gale, their heads bow all one way.
Dion. The only cause that draws Philaster back
From this attempt is the fair princess' love,
Which he admires, and we can now confute.
Thra. Perhaps he'll not believe it.



'Tis without question so.

Why, gentlemen,

Ay, 'tis past speech,
She lives dishonestly: but how shall we,
If he be curious, work upon his faith?
Thra. We all are satisfied within ourselves.
Dion. Since it is true, and tends to his own good,
I'll make this new report to be my knowledge;
I'll say I know it; nay, I'll swear I saw it.



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Good morrow to your honour: we have spent
Some time in seeking you.


My worthy friends,

You that can keep your memories to know
Your friend in miseries, and cannot frown
On men disgraced for virtue, a good day
Attend you all! What service may I do
Worthy your acceptation?


My good lord,

We come to urge that virtue, which we know


Lives in your breast, forth. Rise, and make a head:

The nobles and the people are all dulled

With this usurping King; and not a man,

That ever heard the word, or knew such a thing
As virtue, but will second your attempts.

Phi. How honourable is this love in you

To me that have deserved none!


Know, my

(You, that were born to shame your poor Philaster With too much courtesy), I could afford

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To melt myself in thanks: but my designs

Are not yet ripe: suffice it, that ere long

I shall employ your loves; but yet the time
Is short of what I would.

Dion. The time is fuller, sir, than you expect ;


That which hereafter will not, perhaps, be reached

By violence may now be caught. As for the

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You know the people have long hated him;
But now the princess, whom they loved-

Phi. Why, what of her?


Is loathed as much as he.

Phi. By what strange means?


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[Offers to draw his sword: they hold him.

And thou shalt feel it! I had thought thy


Had been of honour.

Thus to rob a lady
Of her good name, is an infectious sin
Not to be pardoned: be it false as hell,
'Twill never be redeemed, if it be sown
Amongst the people, fruitful to increase
All evil they shall hear. Let me alone,
That I may cut off falsehood whilst it springs!
Set hills on hills betwixt me and the man
That utters this, and I will scale them all,
And from the utmost top fall on his neck,
Like thunder from a cloud.



This is most strange :

Sure, he does love her.

I do love fair truth:

Sirs, let go my arms.

She is my mistress, and who injures her
Draws vengeance from me.


Thra. Nay, good my lord, be patient.
Cle. Sir, remember this is your honoured friend,
That comes to do his service, and will show you
Why he uttered this.


I ask you pardon, sir ;
My zeal to truth made me unmannerly:
Should I have heard dishonour spoke of you,
Behind your back, untruly, I had been
As much distempered and enraged as now.
Dion. But this, my lord, is truth.


Oh, say not so!
Good sir, forbear to say so; 'tis then truth,
That all womankind is false: urge it no more;
It is impossible. Why should you think

The princess light?


Why, she was taken at it.



Phi. 'Tis false! by Heaven, 'tis false it cannot


Can it? Speak, gentlemen; for love of truth,


Is't possible? Can women all be damned?

Dion. Why, no, my lord.

Dion. And she was taken with her boy.


Why, then, it cannot be.

What boy?

Oh, good gods!

Dion. A page, a boy that serves her.

A little boy?

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