ACT IV
Scene VI.
 

The same. A room in the brothel.

[Enter Pandar, Bawd, and Boult.]

PANDAR
Well, I had rather than twice the worth of her she had ne'er come
here.

BAWD
Fie, fie upon her! she's able to freeze the god Priapus, and undo
a whole generation. We must either get her ravished, or be rid of
her. When she should do for clients her fitment, and do me the
kindness of our profession, she has me her quirks, her reasons,
her master reasons, her prayers, her knees; that she would make
a puritan of the devil, if he should cheapen a kiss of her.

BOULT
'Faith, I must ravish her, or she'll disfurnish us of all our
cavaliers, and make our swearers priests.

PANDAR
Now, the pox upon her green-sickness for me!

BAWD
'Faith, there's no way to be rid on't but by the way to the pox.
Here comes the Lord Lysimachus disguised.

BOULT
We should have both lord and lown, if the peevish baggage would
but give way to customers.

[Enter Lysimachus.]

LYSIMACHUS
How now! How a dozen of virginities?

BAWD
Now, the gods to bless your honour!

BOULT
I am glad to see your honour in good health.

LYSIMACHUS
You may so; 'tis the better for you that your resorters stand
upon sound legs. How now! wholesome iniquity have you that a
man may deal withal, and defy the surgeon?

BAWD
We have here one, sir, if she would -- but there never came her
like in Mytilene.

LYSIMACHUS
If she'ld do the deed of darkness, thou wouldst say.

BAWD
Your honour knows what 'tis to say well enough.

LYSIMACHUS
Well, call forth, call forth.

BOULT
For flesh and blood, sir, white and red, you shall see a rose;
and she were a rose indeed, if she had but --

LYSIMACHUS
What, prithee?

BOULT
O, sir, I can be modest.

LYSIMACHUS
That dignifies the renown of a bawd, no less than it gives a good
report to a number to be chaste.

[Exit Boult.]

BAWD
Here comes that which grows to the stalk; never plucked yet, I
can assure you.

[Re-enter Boult with Marina.]

Is she not a fair creature?

LYSIMACHUS
'Faith, she would serve after a long voyage at sea. Well, there's
for you: leave us.

BAWD
I beseech your honour, give me leave: a word, and I'll have done
presently.

LYSIMACHUS
I beseech you, do.

BAWD
[To Marina.]
First, I would have you note, this is an honourable man.

MARINA
I desire to find him so, that I may worthily note him.

BAWD
Next, he's the governor of this country, and a man whom I am
bound to.

MARINA
If he govern the country, you are bound to him indeed; but how
honourable he is in that, I know not.

BAWD
Pray you, without any more virginal fencing, will you use him
kindly? He will line your apron with gold.

MARINA
What he will do graciously, I will thankfully receive.

LYSIMACHUS
Ha' you done?

BAWD
My lord, she's not paced yet: you must take some pains to work
her to your manage. Come, we will leave his honour and her
together. Go thy ways.

[Exeunt Bawd, Pandar, and Boult.]

LYSIMACHUS
Now, pretty one, how long have you been at this trade?

MARINA
What trade, sir?

LYSIMACHUS
Why, I cannot name't but I shall offend.

MARINA
I cannot be offended with my trade. Please you to name it.

LYSIMACHUS
How long have you been of this profession?

MARINA
E'er since I can remember?

LYSIMACHUS
Did you go to't so young? Were you a gamester at five or at
seven?

MARINA
Earlier, too, sir, if now I be one.

LYSIMACHUS
Why, the house you dwell in proclaims you to be a creature of
sale.

MARINA
Do you know this house to be a place of such resort, and will
come into 't? I hear say you are of honourable parts, and are
the governor of this place.

LYSIMACHUS
Why, hath your principal made known unto you who I am?

MARINA
Who is my principal?

LYSIMACHUS
Why, your herb-woman; she that sets seeds and roots of shame and
iniquity. O, you have heard something of my power, and so stand
aloof for more serious wooing. But I protest to thee, pretty one,
my authority shall not see thee, or else look friendly upon thee.
Come, bring me to some private place: come, come.

MARINA
If you were born to honour, show it now;
If put upon you, make the judgement good
That thought you worthy of it.

LYSIMACHUS
How 's this? how 's this? Some more; be sage.

MARINA
For me,
That am a maid, though most ungentle fortune
Have placed me in this sty, where, since I came,
Diseases have been sold dearer than physic,
O, that the gods
Would set me free from this unhallow'd place,
Though they did change me to the meanest bird
That flies i' the purer air!

LYSIMACHUS
I did not think
Thou couldst have spoke so well; ne'er dream'd thou couldst.
Had I brought hither a corrupted mind,
Thy speech had alter'd it. Hold, here 's gold for thee:
Persever in that clear way thou goest,
And the gods strengthen thee!

MARINA
The good gods preserve you!

LYSIMACHUS
For me, be you thoughten
That I came with no ill intent; for to me
The very doors and windows savour vilely.
Fare thee well. Thou art a piece of virtue, and
I doubt not but thy training hath been noble.
Hold, here's more gold for thee.
A curse upon him, die he like a thief,
That robs thee of thy goodness! If thou dost
Hear from me, it shall be for thy good.

[Re-enter Boult.]

BOULT
I beseech your honour, one piece for me.

LYSIMACHUS
Avaunt, thou damned door-keeper!
Your house but for this virgin that doth prop it,
Would sink and overwhelm you. Away!

[Exit.]

BOULT
How's this? We must take another course with you. If your peevish
chastity, which is not worth a breakfast in the cheapest country
under the cope, shall undo a whole household, let me be gelded
like a spaniel. Come your ways.

MARINA
Whither would you have me?

BOULT
I must have your maidenhead taken off, or the common hangman
shall execute it. Come your ways. We'll have no more
gentlemen driven away. Come your ways, I say.

[Re-enter Bawd.]

BAWD
How now! what's the matter?

BOULT
Worse and worse, mistress; she has here spoken holy words to the
Lord Lysimachus.

BAWD
O Abominable!

BOULT
She makes our profession as it were to stink afore the face of
the gods.

BAWD
Marry, hang her up for ever!

BOULT
The nobleman would have dealt with her like a nobleman, and she
sent him away as cold as a snowball; saying his prayers too.

BAWD
Boult, take her away; use her at thy pleasure: crack the glass of
her virginity, and make the rest malleable.

BOULT
An if she were a thornier piece of ground than she is, she shall
be ploughed.

MARINA
Hark, hark, you gods!

BAWD
She conjures: away with her! Would she had never come within my
doors! Marry, hang you! She's born to undo us. Will you not go
the way of women-kind? Marry, come up, my dish of chastity with
rosemary and bays!

[Exit.]

BOULT
Come, mistress; come your ways with me.

MARINA
Whither wilt thou have me?

BOULT
To take from you the jewel you hold so dear.

MARINA
Prithee, tell me one thing first.

BOULT
Come now, your one thing.

MARINA
What canst thou wish thine enemy to be?

BOULT
Why, I could wish him to he my master, or rather, my mistress.

MARINA
Neither of these are so had as thou art,
Since they do better thee in their command.
Thou hold'st a place, for which the pained'st fiend
Of hell would not in reputation change:
Thou art the damned doorkeeper to every
Coistrel that comes inquiring for his Tib;
To the choleric fisting of every rogue
Thy ear is liable, thy food is such
As hath been belch'd on by infected lungs.

BOULT
What would you have me do? go to the wars, would you? where a man
may serve seven years for the loss of a leg, and have not money
enough in the end to buy him a wooden one?

MARINA
Do any thing but this thou doest. Empty
Old receptacles, or common shores, of filth;
Serve by indenture to the common hangman:
Any of these ways are yet better than this;
For what thou professest, a baboon, could he speak,
Would own a name too dear. O, that the gods
Would safely deliver me from this place!
Here, here's gold for thee.
If that thy master would gain by me,
Proclaim that I can sing, weave, sew, and dance,
With other virtues, which I'll keep from boast;
And I will undertake all these to teach.
I doubt not but this populous city will
Yield many scholars.

BOULT
But can you teach all this you speak of?

MARINA
Prove that I cannot, take me home again,
And prostitute me to the basest groom
That doth frequent your house.

BOULT
Well, I will see what I can do for thee: if I can place thee, I
will.

MARINA
But amongst honest women.

BOULT
'Faith, my acquaintance lies little amongst them. But since my
master and mistress have bought you, there's no going but by
their consent: therefore I will make them acquainted with your
purpose, and I doubt not but I shall find them tractable enough.
ome, I'll do for thee what I can; come your ways.

[Exeunt.]