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My wife, her sister, and a rabble more
Of vile confederates; along with them

They brought one Pinch, a hungry, lean-faced villain,

A mere anatomy, a mountebank,

A thread-bare juggler, and a fortune-teller;
A needy, hollow-eyed, sharp-looking wretch,
A living dead man: this pernicious slave,
Forsooth, took on him as a conjurer;
And, gazing in mine eyes, feeling my pulse,
And with no face, as 'twere, outfacing me,
Cries out, I was possess'd: then altogether
They fell upon me, bound me, bore me thence;
And in a dark and dankish vault at home

There left me and my man, both bound together;
Till gnawing with my teeth my bonds in sunder,
I gain'd my freedom, and immediately

Ran hither to your grace, whom I beseech

To give me ample satisfaction

For these deep shames and great indignities.

Ang. My lord, in truth, thus far I witness with


That he dined not at home, but was lock'd out.

Duke. But had he such a chain of thee, or no?
Ang. He had, my lord; and when he ran in here,
These people saw the chain about his neck.

Mer. Besides, I will be sworn, these ears of mine
Heard you confess you had the chain of him,
After you
first forswore it on the mart;

And, thereupon, I drew my sword on you;

And then you fled into this abbey here,

From whence, I think, you are come by miracle.
Ant. E. I never came within these abbey walls,
Nor ever didst thou draw thy sword on me :
I never saw the chain, so help me, Heaven!
And this is false, you burden me withal.

Duke. Why, what an intricate impeach is this! I think, you all have drunk of Circe's cup.1

If here you housed him, here he would have been ; If he were mad, he would not plead so coldly.— You say, he dined at home; the goldsmith here Denies that saying.-Sirrah, what say you?

Dro. E. Sir, he dined with her there, at the Por


Cour. He did; and from my finger snatch'd that


Ant. E. 'Tis true, my liege; this ring I had of


Duke. Saw'st thou him enter at the abbey here? Cour. As sure, my liege, as I do see your grace.

Duke. Why, this is strange.-Go, call the abbess hither:

I think you are all mated, or stark mad.

[Exit an Attendant. Egeon. Most mighty duke, vouchsafe me speak a

word :

Haply I see a friend will save my life,


pay the sum that may deliver me.

Duke. Speak freely, Syracusian, what thou wilt.

Which is said to have transformed the companions of Ulysses into swine. 2 Confounded.

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Egeon. Is not your name, sir, call'd Antipholus ? And is not that your bondman Dromio?

Dro. E. Within this hour I was his bondman,

But he, I thank him, gnaw'd in two my cords:
Now am I Dromio, and his man, unbound.

Egeon. I am sure, you both of you remember


Dro. E. Ourselves we do remember, sir, by you;
For lately we were bound as you are now.
You are not Pinch's patient, are you, sir?

Egeon. Why look you strange on me? you know
me well.

Ant. E. I never saw you in my life till now. Egeon. O! grief hath changed me since you saw me last;


And careful hours,1 with Time's deformed hand,
Have written strange defeatures 3 in my face.
But tell me yet, dost thou not know my voice?
Ant. E. Neither.


Dromio, nor thou?
Dro. E. No, trust me, sir, nor I.

I am sure, thou dost.

Dro. E. Ay, sir? but I am sure I do not; and whatsoever a man denies, you are now bound to believe him.

Egeon. Not know my voice! O, time's extremity!

1 Hours of distress and sorrow.

3 Alteration of features.

2 Deforming.

Hast thou so crack'd and splitted my poor tongue,
In seven short years, that here my only son
Knows not my feeble key of untuned cares? 1
Though now this grained 2 face of mine be hid
In sap-consuming winter's drizzled snow,
And all the conduits of my blood froze up;
Yet hath my night of life some memory,
My wasting lamp some fading glimmer left,
My dull deaf ears a little use to hear :
All these old witnesses (I cannot err)
Tell me, thou art my son Antipholus.

Ant. E. I never saw my father in my life.

Egeon. But seven years since, in Syracusa, boy, Thou know'st, we parted: but, perhaps, my son, Thou shamest to acknowlege me in misery.

Ant. E. The duke, and all that know me in the city,

Can witness with me that it is not so:

I ne'er saw Syracusa in my life.

Duke. I tell thee, Syracusian, twenty years
Have I been patron to Antipholus,

During which time he ne'er saw Syracusa.
I see, thy age and dangers make thee dote.



Abb. Most mighty duke, behold a man much
[all gather to see him.

1 The weak and discordant tone of my voice, that is changed

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