Twelfe Night

Page 32

Vio. If nothing lets to make vs happie both, But this my masculine vsurp'd attyre: Do not embrace me, till each circumstance, Of place, time, fortune, do cohere and iumpe That I am Viola, which to confirme, Ile bring you to a Captaine in this Towne, Where lye my maiden weeds: by whose gentle helpe, I was preseru'd to serue this Noble Count: All the occurrence of my fortune since Hath beene betweene this Lady, and this Lord

Seb. So comes it Lady, you haue beene mistooke: But Nature to her bias drew in that. You would haue bin contracted to a Maid, Nor are you therein (by my life) deceiu'd, You are betroth'd both to a maid and man

Du. Be not amaz'd, right noble is his blood: If this be so, as yet the glasse seemes true, I shall haue share in this most happy wracke, Boy, thou hast saide to me a thousand times, Thou neuer should'st loue woman like to me

Vio. And all those sayings, will I ouer sweare, And all those swearings keepe as true in soule, As doth that Orbed Continent, the fire, That seuers day from night

Du. Giue me thy hand, And let me see thee in thy womans weedes

Vio. The Captaine that did bring me first on shore Hath my Maides garments: he vpon some Action Is now in durance, at Maluolio's suite, a Gentleman, and follower of my Ladies

Ol. He shall inlarge him: fetch Maluolio hither, And yet alas, now I remember me, They say poore Gentleman, he's much distract. Enter Clowne with a Letter, and Fabian.

A most extracting frensie of mine owne From my remembrance, clearly banisht his. How does he sirrah? Cl. Truely Madam, he holds Belzebub at the staues end as well as a man in his case may do: has heere writ a letter to you, I should haue giuen't you to day morning. But as a madmans Epistles are no Gospels, so it skilles not much when they are deliuer'd

Ol. Open't, and read it

Clo. Looke then to be well edified, when the Foole deliuers the Madman. By the Lord Madam

Ol. How now, art thou mad? Clo. No Madam, I do but reade madnesse: and your Ladyship will haue it as it ought to bee, you must allow Vox

Ol. Prethee reade i'thy right wits

Clo. So I do Madona: but to reade his right wits, is to reade thus: therefore, perpend my Princesse, and giue eare

Ol. Read it you, sirrah

Fab. Reads. By the Lord Madam, you wrong me, and the world shall know it: Though you haue put mee into darkenesse, and giuen your drunken Cosine rule ouer me, yet haue I the benefit of my senses as well as your Ladieship. I haue your owne letter, that induced mee to the semblance I put on; with the which I doubt not, but to do my selfe much right, or you much shame: thinke of me as you please. I leaue my duty a little vnthought of, and speake out of my iniury. The madly vs'd Maluolio

Ol. Did he write this? Clo. I Madame

Du. This sauours not much of distraction

Ol. See him deliuer'd Fabian, bring him hither: My Lord, so please you, these things further thought on, To thinke me as well a sister, as a wife, One day shall crowne th' alliance on't, so please you, Heere at my house, and at my proper cost

Du. Madam, I am most apt t' embrace your offer: Your Master quits you: and for your seruice done him, So much against the mettle of your sex, So farre beneath your soft and tender breeding, And since you call'd me Master, for so long: Heere is my hand, you shall from this time bee Your Masters Mistris

Ol. A sister, you are she. Enter Maluolio.

William Shakespeare
Classic Literature Library

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