Post. What Lady would you chuse to assaile? Iach. Yours, whom in constancie you thinke stands so safe. I will lay you ten thousands Duckets to your Ring, that commend me to the Court where your Lady is, with no more aduantage then the opportunitie of a second conference, and I will bring from thence, that Honor of hers, which you imagine so reseru'd

Posthmus. I will wage against your Gold, Gold to it: My Ring I holde deere as my finger, 'tis part of it

Iach. You are a Friend, and there in the wiser: if you buy Ladies flesh at a Million a Dram, you cannot preserue it from tainting; but I see you haue some Religion in you, that you feare

Posthu. This is but a custome in your tongue: you beare a grauer purpose I hope

Iach. I am the Master of my speeches, and would vnder-go what's spoken, I sweare

Posthu. Will you? I shall but lend my Diamond till your returne: let there be Couenants drawne between's. My Mistris exceedes in goodnesse, the hugenesse of your vnworthy thinking. I dare you to this match: heere's my Ring

Phil. I will haue it no lay

Iach. By the Gods it is one: if I bring you no sufficient testimony that I haue enioy'd the deerest bodily part of your Mistris: my ten thousand Duckets are yours, so is your Diamond too: if I come off, and leaue her in such honour as you haue trust in; Shee your Iewell, this your Iewell, and my Gold are yours: prouided, I haue your commendation, for my more free entertainment

Post. I embrace these Conditions, let vs haue Articles betwixt vs: onely thus farre you shall answere, if you make your voyage vpon her, and giue me directly to vnderstand, you haue preuayl'd, I am no further your Enemy, shee is not worth our debate. If shee remaine vnseduc'd, you not making it appeare otherwise: for your ill opinion, and th' assault you haue made to her chastity, you shall answer me with your Sword

Iach. Your hand, a Couenant: wee will haue these things set downe by lawfull Counsell, and straight away for Britaine, least the Bargaine should catch colde, and sterue: I will fetch my Gold, and haue our two Wagers recorded

Post. Agreed

French. Will this hold, thinke you

Phil. Signior Iachimo will not from it. Pray let vs follow 'em.


Scena Sexta.

Enter Queene, Ladies, and Cornelius.

Qu. Whiles yet the dewe's on ground, Gather those Flowers, Make haste. Who ha's the note of them? Lady. I Madam

Queen. Dispatch.

Exit Ladies.

Now Master Doctor, haue you brought those drugges? Cor. Pleaseth your Highnes, I: here they are, Madam: But I beseech your Grace, without offence (My Conscience bids me aske) wherefore you haue Commanded of me these most poysonous Compounds, Which are the moouers of a languishing death: But though slow, deadly

Qu. I wonder, Doctor, Thou ask'st me such a Question: Haue I not bene Thy Pupill long? Hast thou not learn'd me how To make Perfumes? Distill? Preserue? Yea so, That our great King himselfe doth woo me oft For my Confections? Hauing thus farre proceeded, (Vnlesse thou think'st me diuellish) is't not meete That I did amplifie my iudgement in Other Conclusions? I will try the forces Of these thy Compounds, on such Creatures as We count not worth the hanging (but none humane) To try the vigour of them, and apply Allayments to their Act, and by them gather Their seuerall vertues, and effects

Cor. Your Highnesse Shall from this practise, but make hard your heart: Besides, the seeing these effects will be Both noysome, and infectious

Qu. O content thee. Enter Pisanio.

William Shakespeare
Classic Literature Library

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