Duk. I doe feare: too dreadfull: Sith 'twas my fault, to giue the people scope, 'Twould be my tirrany to strike and gall them, For what I bid them doe: For, we bid this be done When euill deedes haue their permissiue passe, And not the punishment: therefore indeede (my father) I haue on Angelo impos'd the office, Who may in th' ambush of my name, strike home, And yet, my nature neuer in the sight To do in slander: And to behold his sway I will, as 'twere a brother of your Order, Visit both Prince, and People: Therefore I pre'thee Supply me with the habit, and instruct me How I may formally in person beare Like a true Frier: Moe reasons for this action At our more leysure, shall I render you; Onely, this one: Lord Angelo is precise, Stands at a guard with Enuie: scarce confesses That his blood flowes: or that his appetite Is more to bread then stone: hence shall we see If power change purpose: what our Seemers be.


Scena Quinta.

Enter Isabell and Francisca a Nun.

Isa. And haue you Nuns no farther priuiledges? Nun. Are not these large enough? Isa. Yes truely; I speake not as desiring more, But rather wishing a more strict restraint Vpon the Sisterhood, the Votarists of Saint Clare.

Lucio within.

Luc. Hoa? peace be in this place

Isa. Who's that which cals? Nun. It is a mans voice: gentle Isabella Turne you the key, and know his businesse of him; You may; I may not: you are yet vnsworne: When you haue vowd, you must not speake with men, But in the presence of the Prioresse; Then if you speake, you must not show your face; Or if you show your face, you must not speake. He cals againe: I pray you answere him

Isa. Peace and prosperitie: who is't that cals? Luc. Haile Virgin, (if you be) as those cheeke-Roses Proclaime you are no lesse: can you so steed me, As bring me to the sight of Isabella, A Nouice of this place, and the faire Sister To her vnhappie brother Claudio? Isa. Why her vnhappy Brother? Let me aske, The rather for I now must make you know I am that Isabella, and his Sister

Luc. Gentle & faire: your Brother kindly greets you; Not to be weary with you; he's in prison

Isa. Woe me; for what? Luc. For that, which if my selfe might be his Iudge, He should receiue his punishment, in thankes: He hath got his friend with childe

Isa. Sir, make me not your storie

Luc. 'Tis true; I would not, though 'tis my familiar sin, With Maids to seeme the Lapwing, and to iest Tongue, far from heart: play with all Virgins so: I hold you as a thing en-skied, and sainted, By your renouncement, an imortall spirit And to be talk'd with in sincerity, As with a Saint

Isa. You doe blaspheme the good, in mocking me

Luc. Doe not beleeue it: fewnes, and truth; tis thus, Your brother, and his louer haue embrac'd; As those that feed, grow full: as blossoming Time That from the seednes, the bare fallow brings To teeming foyson: euen so her plenteous wombe Expresseth his full Tilth, and husbandry

Isa. Some one with childe by him? my cosen Iuliet? Luc. Is she your cosen? Isa. Adoptedly, as schoole-maids change their names By vaine, though apt affection

Luc. She it is

Isa. Oh, let him marry her

William Shakespeare
Classic Literature Library

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