Immagini della pagina
PDF
ePub

Things known betwixt us three, I'll write you

down:

The which shall point you forth at every sitting
What you must say; that he shall not perceive
But that you have your father's bosom there
And speak his very heart.

Flo.

There is some sap in this.

Cam.

I am bound to you:

A course more promising

Than a wild dedication of yourselves

To unpath'd waters, undream'd shores, most cer-
tain

To miseries enough; no hope to help you,
But as you shake off one to take another;
Nothing so certain as your anchors, who
Do their best office, if they can but stay you
Where you'll be loath to be: besides you know
Prosperity's the very bond of love,

Whose fresh complexion and whose heart together
Affliction alters.

Per.

One of these is true:

I think affliction may subdue the cheek,

But not take in the mind.

Cam.

Yea, say you so?

There shall not at your father's house these seven

years

Be born another such.

580

My good Camillo,

590

Flo.
She is as forward of her breeding as
She is i' the rear o' her birth.

Cam.

I cannot say 'tis pity

She lacks instructions, for she seems a mistress

572. point you forth, indicate for you.

588. take in, overpower.
592. o' her, in respect of her;

Rowe's correction (ed. 1) of Ff 'our; Rowe himself in ed. 2 and most later editions before the Camb. edd. read our.

[blocks in formation]

The medicine of our house, how shall we do?
We are not furnish'd like Bohemia's son,

Nor shall appear in Sicilia.

[blocks in formation]

Fear none of this: I think you know my fortunes
Do all lie there: it shall be so my care

To have you royally appointed as if

The scene you play were mine. For instance, sir, That you may know you shall not want, one word. [They talk aside.

Re-enter AUTOLYCUS.

600

Aut. Ha, ha! what a fool Honesty is! and Trust, his sworn brother, a very simple gentleman! I have sold all my trumpery; not a counterfeit stone, not a ribbon, glass, pomander, brooch, table-book, ballad, knife, tape, glove, 610 shoe-tie, bracelet, horn-ring, to keep my pack from fasting they throng who should buy first, as if my trinkets had been hallowed and brought a benediction to the buyer: by which means I saw whose purse was best in picture; and what I saw, to my good use I remembered. My clown, who wants but something to be a reasonable man,

:

598. medicine, physician. 600. appear, sc. to be such. 604. For instance,

proof.

as a

609. pomander, a ball of perfumes worn in the pocket or about the neck.

610. table-book, note-book composed of tablets.

615. best in picture, best to look at, in best condition. The Camb. edd. record a plausible emendation: 'best in pasture,' i.e. best fed.'

grew so in love with the wenches' song, that he would not stir his pettitoes till he had both tune and words; which so drew the rest of the herd to 620 me that all their other senses stuck in ears: you might have pinched a piacket, it was senseless; 'twas nothing to geld a codpiece of a purse; I could have filed keys off that hung in chains: no hearing, no feeling, but my sir's song, and admiring the nothing of it. So that in this time of lethargy I picked and cut most of their festival purses; and had not the old man come in with a whoo-bub against his daughter and the king's son and scared my choughs from the chaff, I had 630 not left a purse alive in the whole army.

[Camillo, Florizel, and Perdita come forward. Cam. Nay, but my letters, by this means being there

So soon as you arrive, shall clear that doubt.

Flo. And those that you'll procure from King
Leontes-

Cam. Shall satisfy your father.

[blocks in formation]

We'll make an instrument of this, omit
Nothing may give us aid.

Aut. If they have overheard me now, why, hanging.

Cam. How now, good fellow! why shakest thou so? Fear not, man; here's no harm intended to thee.

623. geld a codpiece of a purse, pick a purse from the pocket of the hose, where it was often carried.

640

625. my sir's, the clown's. 629. whoo-bub, clamour, hubbub.

637. this, this fellow.

Aut. I am a poor fellow, sir.

Cam. Why, be so still; here's nobody will steal that from thee: yet for the outside of thy poverty we must make an exchange; therefore discase thee instantly,—thou must think there's a necessity in 't,-and change garments with this gentleman: though the pennyworth on his side 650 be the worst, yet hold thee, there's some boot.

Aut. I am a poor fellow, sir. [Aside] I know ye well enough.

Cam. Nay, prithee, dispatch: the gentleman is half flayed already.

Aut. Are you in earnest, sir? [Aside] I smell the trick on 't.

Flo. Dispatch, I prithee.

Aut. Indeed, I have had earnest; but I cannot with conscience take it.

Cam. Unbuckle, unbuckle.

[Florizel and Autolycus exchange garments.
Fortunate mistress,-let my prophecy
Come home to ye !—you must retire yourself
Into some covert: take your sweetheart's hat
And pluck it o'er your brows, muffle your face,
Dismantle you, and, as you can, disliken

The truth of your own seeming; that you may—
For I do fear eyes over-to shipboard

[blocks in formation]

660

670

662. my prophecy, viz. that hinted in the auspicious phrase he has just used.

666. disliken, make unlike, disguise.

He would not call me son.

Cam.

Nay, you shall have no hat.
[Giving it to Perdita.

Come, lady, come. Farewell, my friend.

Aut.

Adieu, sir.

Flo. O Perdita, what have we twain forgot! Pray you, a word.

Cam. [Aside] What I do next, shall be to tell the king

Of this escape and whither they are bound;
Wherein my hope is I shall so prevail

To force him after: in whose company
I shall review Sicilia, for whose sight
I have a woman's longing.

Flo.

Fortune speed us!

Thus we set on, Camillo, to the sea-side.

Cam. The swifter speed the better.

[Exeunt Florizel, Perdita, and Camillo.

680

Aut. I understand the business, I hear it: to have an open ear, a quick eye, and a nimble hand, is necessary for a cut-purse; a good nose is requisite also, to smell out work for the other senses. I see this is the time that the unjust man doth thrive. What an exchange had this been without boot! What a boot is here with 690 this exchange! Sure the gods do this year connive at us, and we may do any thing extempore. The prince himself is about a piece of iniquity, stealing away from his father with his clog at his heels: if I thought it were a piece of honesty to acquaint the king withal, I would not do 't: I hold it the more knavery to

692. extempore, i.e. without taking any precautions.

695. piece, work, act.
697. the more knavery, the

greater knavery, -the opposite course of betraying the prince being itself, in Autolycus' view, dishonest' but in a less degree.

« IndietroContinua »