I am as well acquainted here as I was in our house of
profession; one would think it were Mistress Overdone's own
house, for here be many of her old customers. First, here's young
Master Rash; he's in for a commodity of brown paper and old
ginger, nine score and seventeen pounds, of which he made five
marks ready money. Marry, then ginger was not much in request,
for the old women were all dead. Then is there here one Master
Caper, at the suit of Master Threepile the mercer, for some four
suits of peach-colour'd satin, which now peaches him a beggar.
Then have we here young Dizy, and young Master Deepvow, and
Master Copperspur, and Master Starvelackey, the rapier and dagger
man, and young Dropheir that kill'd lusty Pudding, and Master
Forthlight the tilter, and brave Master Shootie the great
traveller, and wild Halfcan that stabb'd Pots, and, I think,
forty more- all great doers in our trade, and are now 'for the
Look you, sir, here comes your ghostly father.
Do we jest now, think you?
Sir, induced by my charity, and hearing how hastily you are
to depart, I am come to advise you, comfort you, and pray with
Friar, not I; I have been drinking hard all night, and
I will have more time to prepare me, or they shall beat out my
brains with billets. I will not consent to die this day, that's
O, Sir, you must; and therefore I beseech you
Look forward on the journey you shall go.
I swear I will not die to-day for any man's persuasion.
A creature unprepar'd, unmeet for death;
And to transport him in the mind he is
Here in the prison, father,
There died this morning of a cruel fever
One Ragozine, a most notorious pirate,
A man of Claudio's years; his beard and head
Just of his colour. What if we do omit
This reprobate till he were well inclin'd,
And satisfy the deputy with the visage
Of Ragozine, more like to Claudio?
O, 'tis an accident that heaven provides!
Dispatch it presently; the hour draws on
Prefix'd by Angelo. See this be done,
And sent according to command; whiles I
Persuade this rude wretch willingly to die.
This shall be done, good father, presently.
But Barnardine must die this afternoon;
And how shall we continue Claudio,
To save me from the danger that might come
If he were known alive?
Let this be done:
Put them in secret holds, both Barnardine and Claudio.
Ere twice the sun hath made his journal greeting
To the under generation, you shall find
Your safety manifested.
Now will I write letters to Angelo-
The Provost, he shall bear them- whose contents
Shall witness to him I am near at home,
And that, by great injunctions, I am bound
To enter publicly. Him I'll desire
To meet me at the consecrated fount,
A league below the city; and from thence,
By cold gradation and well-balanc'd form.
We shall proceed with Angelo.
Unhappy Claudio! Wretched Isabel!
Injurious world! Most damned Angelo!
This nor hurts him nor profits you a jot;
Forbear it, therefore; give your cause to heaven.
Mark what I say, which you shall find
By every syllable a faithful verity.
The Duke comes home to-morrow. Nay, dry your eyes.
One of our covent, and his confessor,
Gives me this instance. Already he hath carried
Notice to Escalus and Angelo,
Who do prepare to meet him at the gates,
There to give up their pow'r. If you can, pace your wisdom
In that good path that I would wish it go,
And you shall have your bosom on this wretch,
Grace of the Duke, revenges to your heart,
And general honour.
This letter, then, to Friar Peter give;
'Tis that he sent me of the Duke's return.
Say, by this token, I desire his company
At Mariana's house to-night. Her cause and yours
I'll perfect him withal; and he shall bring you
Before the Duke; and to the head of Angelo
Accuse him home and home. For my poor self,
I am combined by a sacred vow,
And shall be absent. Wend you with this letter.
Command these fretting waters from your eyes
With a light heart; trust not my holy order,
If I pervert your course. Who's here?
O pretty Isabella, I am pale at mine heart to see thine eyes
so red. Thou must be patient. I am fain to dine and sup with
water and bran; I dare not for my head fill my belly; one
fruitful meal would set me to't. But they say the Duke will be
here to-morrow. By my troth, Isabel, I lov'd thy brother. If the
old fantastical Duke of dark corners had been at home, he had