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LEONTES, King of Sicilia.
Another Sicilian Lord.
ROGERO, a Sicilian Gentleman.
An Attendant on the young Prince Mamüllius.
POLIXENES, King of Bohemia.
ARCHIDAMUs, a Bohemian Lord.
An old Shepherd, reputed Father of Perdita.
Servant to the old Shepherd.
AUTOLYCUS, a Rogue.
HERMIONE, Queen to Leontes.
PERDITA, Daughter to Leontes and Hermione.
EMILIA, a Lady, attending the Queen.
Lords, Ladies, and Attendants; Satyrs for a
SCENE,-Sometimes in Sicilia, sometimes in
SCENE 1.-Sicilia. An Ante-chamber in Lcontes Palace.
Enter CAMILLO and ARCHIDAMUS.
Arch. If you shall chance, Camillo, to visit Bohemia on the like occasion wherein my services are now on foot, you shall see, as I have said, great difference betwixt our Bohemia and your Sicilia.
Cam. I think, this coming summer, the king of Sicilia means to pay Bohemia the visitation which he justly owes him.
Arch. Wherein our entertainment shall shame us, we will be justified in our loves: for, indeed,
Cam. 'Beseech you,
Arch. Verily, I speak it in the freedom of my knowledge: we cannot with such magnificence-in so rare-I know not what to say.We will give you sleepy drinks; that your senses, unintelligent of
insufficience, may, though they cannot praise us, as little accuse us.
Cam. You pay a great deal too dear for what's given freely.
Arch. Believe me, I speak as my understanding instructs me, and as mine honesty puts it to utterance.
Cam. Sicilia cannot shew himself over kind to Bohemia. They were trained together in their childhoods; and there rooted betwixt them then such an affection, which cannot choose but branch now. Since their more mature dignities, and royal necessities, made separation of their society, their encounters, though not personal, have been royally attornied, with interchange of gifts, letters, loving embassies; that they have seemed to be together, though absent; shook hands, as over a vast; and embraced, as it were, from the ends of opposed winds. The heavens continue their loves!
Arch. I think, there is not in the world either malice or matter to alter it. You have an unspeakable comfort of your young prince Mamillius; it is a gentleman of the greatest promise that ever came into my note.
Cam. I very well agree with you in the hopes of him: It is a gallant child; one that, indeed, physics the subject, makes old hearts fresh: they, that went on crutches ere he was born, desire yet their life, to see him a man.
Arch. Would they else be content to die?
Cam. Yes; if there were no other excuse, why they should desire to live.
Arch. If the king had no son, they would desire to live on crutches, till he had one.
SCENE II. The same. A Room of state in the Palace.
Enter LEONTES, POLIXENES, HERMIONE, MAMILLIUS, CAMILLO, and Attendants.
Pol. Nine changes of the wat'ry star have been
Would be fill'd up, my brother, with our thanks;
Go hence in debt. And therefore, like a cipher,
With one we thank you, many thousands more,
Stay your thanks awhile;
And pay them, when you part.
We are tougher, brother,
Than you can put us to 't.
No longer stay.
Leon. One seven-night longer.
Very sooth, to-morrow.
Leon. We'll part the time between's then and in
I'll no gainsaying.
Press me not, 'beseech you, so;
There is no tongue, that moves, none, none i' the world,
Do even drag me homeward: which to hinder
Tongue-tied, our queen? speak you.
The by-gone day proclaim'd; say this to him,
Well said, Hermione.
Her. To tell, he longs to see his son, were strong
But let him say so then, and let him go;
But let him swear so, and he shall not stay,
Yet of your royal presence (to Polixenes) I'll adventure
You take my lord, I'll give him my commission,
Her. Nay, but you will?
I may not, verily.
You put me off with limber vows: But 1,
Though you would seek to unsphere the stars with oaths, Should yet say, Sir, no going. Verily,
You shall not go; a lady's verily is
As potent as a lord's. Will you go yet?
Not like a guest; so you shall pay your fees,
When you depart, and save your thanks. How say you?
My prisoner? or my guest? by your dread verily,
Than you to punish.
Not your gaoler then,
But your kind hostess. Come, I'll question you
And to be boy eternal.
Her. Was not my lord the verier wag o' the two? Pol. We were as twinn'd lambs, that did frisk i' the sun,
And bleat the one at the other: What we changed,
With stronger blood, we should have answer'd Heaven
By this we gather,
You have tripp'd since.
O my most sacred lady,
Grace to boot!
Of this make no conclusion; lest you say,
The offences we have made you do, we'll answer;