Cam. My gracious Lord, I may be negligent, foolish, and fearefull, In euery one of these, no man is free, But that his negligence, his folly, feare, Among the infinite doings of the World, Sometime puts forth in your affaires (my Lord.) If euer I were wilfull-negligent, It was my folly: if industriously I play'd the Foole, it was my negligence, Not weighing well the end: if euer fearefull To doe a thing, where I the issue doubted, Whereof the execution did cry out Against the non-performance, 'twas a feare Which oft infects the wisest: these (my Lord) Are such allow'd Infirmities, that honestie Is neuer free of. But beseech your Grace Be plainer with me, let me know my Trespas By it's owne visage; if I then deny it, 'Tis none of mine

Leo. Ha' not you seene Camillo? (But that's past doubt: you haue, or your eye-glasse Is thicker then a Cuckolds Horne) or heard? (For to a Vision so apparant, Rumor Cannot be mute) or thought? (for Cogitation Resides not in that man, that do's not thinke) My Wife is slipperie? If thou wilt confesse, Or else be impudently negatiue, To haue nor Eyes, nor Eares, nor Thought, then say My Wife's a Holy-Horse, deserues a Name As ranke as any Flax-Wench, that puts to Before her troth-plight: say't, and iustify't

Cam. I would not be a stander-by, to heare My Soueraigne Mistresse clouded so, without My present vengeance taken: 'shrew my heart, You neuer spoke what did become you lesse Then this; which to reiterate, were sin As deepe as that, though true

Leo. Is whispering nothing? Is leaning Cheeke to Cheeke? is meating Noses? Kissing with in-side Lip? stopping the Cariere Of Laughter, with a sigh? (a Note infallible Of breaking Honestie) horsing foot on foot? Skulking in corners? wishing Clocks more swift? Houres, Minutes? Noone, Mid-night? and all Eyes Blind with the Pin and Web, but theirs; theirs onely, That would vnseene be wicked? Is this nothing? Why then the World, and all that's in't, is nothing, The couering Skie is nothing, Bohemia nothing, My Wife is nothing, nor Nothing haue these Nothings, If this be nothing

Cam. Good my Lord, be cur'd Of this diseas'd Opinion, and betimes, For 'tis most dangerous

Leo. Say it be, 'tis true

Cam. No, no, my Lord

Leo. It is: you lye, you lye: I say thou lyest Camillo, and I hate thee, Pronounce thee a grosse Lowt, a mindlesse Slaue, Or else a houering Temporizer, that Canst with thine eyes at once see good and euill, Inclining to them both: were my Wiues Liuer Infected (as her life) she would not liue The running of one Glasse

Cam. Who do's infect her? Leo. Why he that weares her like her Medull, hanging About his neck (Bohemia) who, if I Had Seruants true about me, that bare eyes To see alike mine Honor, as their Profits, (Their owne particular Thrifts) they would doe that Which should vndoe more doing: I, and thou His Cup-bearer, whom I from meaner forme Haue Bench'd, and rear'd to Worship, who may'st see Plainely, as Heauen sees Earth, and Earth sees Heauen, How I am gall'd, might'st be-spice a Cup, To giue mine Enemy a lasting Winke: Which Draught to me, were cordiall

Cam. Sir (my Lord) I could doe this, and that with no rash Potion, But with a lingring Dram, that should not worke Maliciously, like Poyson: But I cannot Beleeue this Crack to be in my dread Mistresse (So soueraignely being Honorable.) I haue lou'd thee, Leo. Make that thy question, and goe rot: Do'st thinke I am so muddy, so vnsetled, To appoint my selfe in this vexation? Sully the puritie and whitenesse of my Sheetes (Which to preserue, is Sleepe; which being spotted, Is Goades, Thornes, Nettles, Tayles of Waspes) Giue scandall to the blood o'th' Prince, my Sonne, (Who I doe thinke is mine, and loue as mine) Without ripe mouing to't? Would I doe this? Could man so blench? Cam. I must beleeue you (Sir) I doe, and will fetch off Bohemia for't: Prouided, that when hee's remou'd, your Highnesse Will take againe your Queene, as yours at first, Euen for your Sonnes sake, and thereby for sealing The Iniurie of Tongues, in Courts and Kingdomes Knowne, and ally'd to yours

The Winters Tale Page 06

William Shakespeare Plays

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