Wid. Gentle Madam, You neuer had a seruant to whose trust Your busines was more welcome

Hel. Nor your Mistris Euer a friend, whose thoughts more truly labour To recompence your loue: Doubt not but heauen Hath brought me vp to be your daughters dower, As it hath fated her to be my motiue And helper to a husband. But O strange men, That can such sweet vse make of what they hate, When sawcie trusting of the cosin'd thoughts Defiles the pitchy night, so lust doth play With what it loathes, for that which is away, But more of this heereafter: you Diana, Vnder my poore instructions yet must suffer Something in my behalfe

Dia. Let death and honestie Go with your impositions, I am yours Vpon your will to suffer

Hel. Yet I pray you: But with the word the time will bring on summer, When Briars shall haue leaues as well as thornes, And be as sweet as sharpe: we must away, Our Wagon is prepar'd, and time reuiues vs, All's well that ends well, still the fines the Crowne; What ere the course, the end is the renowne.


Enter Clowne, old Lady, and Lafew.

Laf. No, no, no, your sonne was misled with a snipt taffata fellow there, whose villanous saffron wold haue made all the vnbak'd and dowy youth of a nation in his colour: your daughter-in-law had beene aliue at this houre, and your sonne heere at home, more aduanc'd by the King, then by that red-tail'd humble Bee I speak of

La. I would I had not knowne him, it was the death of the most vertuous gentlewoman, that euer Nature had praise for creating. If she had pertaken of my flesh and cost mee the deerest groanes of a mother, I could not haue owed her a more rooted loue

Laf. Twas a good Lady, 'twas a good Lady. Wee may picke a thousand sallets ere wee light on such another hearbe

Clo. Indeed sir she was the sweete Margerom of the sallet, or rather the hearbe of grace

Laf. They are not hearbes you knaue, they are nose-hearbes

Clowne. I am no great Nabuchadnezar sir, I haue not much skill in grace

Laf. Whether doest thou professe thy selfe, a knaue or a foole? Clo. A foole sir at a womans seruice, and a knaue at a mans

Laf. Your distinction

Clo. I would cousen the man of his wife, and do his seruice

Laf. So you were a knaue at his seruice indeed

Clo. And I would giue his wife my bauble sir to doe her seruice

Laf. I will subscribe for thee, thou art both knaue and foole

Clo. At your seruice

Laf. No, no, no

Clo. Why sir, if I cannot serue you, I can serue as great a prince as you are

Laf. Whose that, a Frenchman? Clo. Faith sir a has an English maine, but his fisnomie is more hotter in France then there

Laf. What prince is that? Clo. The blacke prince sir, alias the prince of darkenesse, alias the diuell

Laf. Hold thee there's my purse, I giue thee not this to suggest thee from thy master thou talk'st off, serue him still

Clo. I am a woodland fellow sir, that alwaies loued a great fire, and the master I speak of euer keeps a good fire, but sure he is the Prince of the world, let his Nobilitie remaine in's Court. I am for the house with the narrow gate, which I take to be too little for pompe to enter: some that humble themselues may, but the manie will be too chill and tender, and theyle bee for the flowrie way that leads to the broad gate, and the great fire

William Shakespeare
Classic Literature Library

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