ACT II
Scene I.
 

Britain. Before CYMBELINE'S palace

Enter CLOTEN and the two LORDS

CLOTEN
Was there ever man had such luck! When I kiss'd the jack,
upon an up-cast to be hit away! I had a hundred pound on't; and
then a whoreson jackanapes must take me up for swearing, as if I
borrowed mine oaths of him, and might not spend them at my
pleasure.

FIRST LORD
What got he by that? You have broke his pate with your
bowl.

SECOND LORD
[Aside] If his wit had been like him that broke it, it
would have run all out.

CLOTEN
When a gentleman is dispos'd to swear, it is not for any
standers-by to curtail his oaths. Ha?

SECOND LORD
No, my lord; [Aside] nor crop the ears of them.

CLOTEN
Whoreson dog! I give him satisfaction? Would he had been
one of my rank!

SECOND LORD
[Aside] To have smell'd like a fool.

CLOTEN
I am not vex'd more at anything in th' earth. A pox on't! I
had rather not be so noble as I am; they dare not fight with me,
because of the Queen my mother. Every jackslave hath his bellyful
of fighting, and I must go up and down like a cock that nobody
can match.

SECOND LORD
[Aside] You are cock and capon too; and you crow,
cock, with your comb on.

CLOTEN
Sayest thou?

SECOND LORD
It is not fit your lordship should undertake every
companion that you give offence to.

CLOTEN
No, I know that; but it is fit I should commit offence to
my inferiors.

SECOND LORD
Ay, it is fit for your lordship only.

CLOTEN
Why, so I say.

FIRST LORD
Did you hear of a stranger that's come to court
to-night?

CLOTEN
A stranger, and I not known on't?

SECOND LORD
[Aside] He's a strange fellow himself, and knows it
not.

FIRST LORD
There's an Italian come, and, 'tis thought, one of
Leonatus' friends.

CLOTEN
Leonatus? A banish'd rascal; and he's another, whatsoever
he be. Who told you of this stranger?

FIRST LORD
One of your lordship's pages.

CLOTEN
Is it fit I went to look upon him? Is there no derogation
in't?

SECOND LORD
You cannot derogate, my lord.

CLOTEN
Not easily, I think.

SECOND LORD
[Aside] You are a fool granted; therefore your issues,
being foolish, do not derogate.

CLOTEN
Come, I'll go see this Italian. What I have lost to-day at
bowls I'll win to-night of him. Come, go.

SECOND LORD
I'll attend your lordship.

Exeunt CLOTEN and FIRST LORD

That such a crafty devil as is his mother
Should yield the world this ass! A woman that
Bears all down with her brain; and this her son
Cannot take two from twenty, for his heart,
And leave eighteen. Alas, poor princess,
Thou divine Imogen, what thou endur'st,
Betwixt a father by thy step-dame govern'd,
A mother hourly coining plots, a wooer
More hateful than the foul expulsion is
Of thy dear husband, than that horrid act
Of the divorce he'd make! The heavens hold firm
The walls of thy dear honour, keep unshak'd
That temple, thy fair mind, that thou mayst stand
T' enjoy thy banish'd lord and this great land!

Exit