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Cam. To satisfy your highness, and the entreaties
Of our most gracious mistress.

The entreaties of your mistress ?

Let that suffice. I have trusted thee, Camillo,
With all the nearest things to my heart, as well
My chamber-councils : wherein, priest-like, thou
Hast cleans'd my bosom; I from thee departed
Thy penitent reform’d: but we have been
Deceiv'd in thy integrity, deceiy'd
In that which seems so.

Be it forbid, my lord!
Leon. To bide upon't;—Thou art not honest: or,
If thou inclin'st that way, thou art a coward;
Which hoxes' honesty behind, restraining
From course requir'd: Or else thou must be counted
A servant, grafted in my serious trust,
And therein negligent; or else a fool,
That seest a game play'd home, the rich stake drawn,
And tak’st it all for jest.

My gracious lord,
I may be negligent, foolish, and fearful;
In every one of these no man is free,
But that his negligence, his folly, fear,
Amongst the infinite doings of the world,
Sometime puts forth : In your affairs, my lord,
If ever I were wilful-negligent,
It was my folly; if industriously
I play'd the fool, it was my negligence,
Not weighing well the end ; if ever fearful
To do a thing, where I the issue doubted,

• To hox is to hamstring.

Whereof the execution did cry out
Against the non-performance, 'twas a fear
Which oft affects the wisest: these, my lord,
Are such allow'd infirmities, that honesty
Is never free of. But, 'beseech your grace,
Be plainer with me; let me know iny trespass
By its own visage : if I then deny it,
'Tis none of mine,

Have not you seen, Camillo,
(But that's past doubt: you have; or your eye-glass
Is thicker than a cuckold's hörn ;) or heard,
(For, to a vision so apparent, rumour
Cannot be mute,) or thought, (for cogitation
Resides not in that man, that does not think it,)
My wife is slippery? If thou wilt confess,
(Or else be impudently negative,
To have nor eyes, nor ears, nor thought) then say,
My wife's a hobbyhorse; deserves a name
As rank as any flax-wench, that puts to
Before her troth-plight: say it, and justify it.

Cam. I would not be a stander-by, to hear
My sovereign mistress clouded so, without
My present vengeance taken: 'Shrew my heart,
You never spoke what did become you

Than this; which to reiterate, were sin
As deep as that, though true.

Is whispering nothing?
Is leaning cheek to cheek? is meeting noses?
Kissing with inside lip? stopping the career
Of laughter with a sigh? (a note infallible
Of breaking honesty:) horsing foot on foot?
Skulking in corners ? wishing clocks more swift?

Hours, minutes? noon, midnight? and all eyes blind
With the pin and web,' but theirs, theirs only,
That would unseen be wicked ? is this nothing ?
Why, then the world, and all that's in't, is nothing;
The covering sky is nothing; Bohemia nothing;
My wife is nothing; nor nothing have these no-

things, If this be nothing. Cam.

Good my lord, be cur'd
Of this diseas'd opinion, and betimes;
For 'tis most dangerous.

Say, it be; 'tis true.
Cam. No, no, my lord.

It is; you lie, you lie:
I say, thou liest, Camillo, and I hate thee;
Pronounce thee a gross lout, a mindless slave;
Or else a hovering temporizer, that
Canst with thine eyes at once see good and evil,
Inclining to them both : Were my wife's liver
Infected as her life, she would not live
The running of one glass.2

Who does fect het Leon. Why he, that wears her like her medal,

hanging About his neck, Bohemia: Who if I Had servants true about me: that bare eyes To see alike mine honour as their profits, Their own particular thrifts,--they would do that Which should undo more doing : Ay, and thou, His cup-bearer,--whom I from meaner form Have bench'd; and rear'd to worship; who may'st see

2 Hour-glass.

1 Disorders of the eye, VOL. IV.


Plainly, as heaven sees earth, and earth sees heaven,
How I am galled, -might'st bespice a cup,
To give mine enemy a lasting wink;
Which draught to me were cordial.

Sir, my lord,
I could do this; and that with no rash? potion,
But with a ling’ring dram, that should not work
Maliciously 4 like poison: But I cannot
Believe this crack to be in my dread mistress,
So sovereignly being honourable.
I have lov’d thee,-

Make't thy question, and go rot! Dost think, I am so muddy, so unsettled, To appoint myself in this vexation? sully The purity and whiteness of my sheets, Which to preserve, is sleep; which being spotted, Is goads, thorns, nettles, tails of wasps ? Give scandal to the blood o' the prince my son, Who, I do think is mine, and love as mine; Without ripe moving to't? Would I do this? Could man so blench ?5 Cam.

must believe you, sir; I do; and will fetch off Bohemia fort: Provided, that when he's remov’d, your highness Will take again your queen, as yours at first; Even for your son's sake; and, thereby, for sealing The injury of tongues, in courts and kingdoms Known and allied to yours. Leon.

Thou dost advise me, Even so as I mine own course have set down :

3 Hasty. 4 Maliciously, with effects openly hurtful.

Si.e. Could any man so start off from propriety?


I'll give no blemish to her honour, none.

Cam. My lord, Go then ; and with a countenance as clear As friendship wears at feasts, keep with Bohemia, And with your queen: I am his cupbearer ; If from me he have wholsome beverage, Account me not your servant. Leon.

This is all : Do't, and thou hast the one half of

my Do't not, thou split’st thine own. Cam.

I'll do't, my lord. Leon. I will seem friendly, as thou hast advis'd me.

[Exit. Cam. O miserable lady !-But, for me, What case stand I in? I must be the poisoner Of good Polixenes: and my ground to do't Is the. obedience to a master; one, Who, in rebellion with himself, will have All that are his, so too. To do this deed, Promotion follows: If I could find example Of thousands, that had struck anointed kings, And flourish'd after, I'd not do't: but since Nor brass nor stone, nor parchment, bears not one, Let villainy itself forswear't. I must Forsake the court: to do't, or no, is certain To me a break-neck. Happy star, reign now! Here comes Bohemia.

Enter POLIXEN ES. Pol.

This is strange! methinks, My favour here begins to warp. Not speak ? Good-day, Camillo.

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