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Fri. It rested in your grace

To unloose this tied-up justice, when you pleas'd:
And it in you more dreadful would have seem'd,
Than in lord Angelo.

Duke. I do fear, too dreadful:

Sith 'twas my fault to give the people scope,
'Twould be my tyranny to strike, and gall them
For what I bid them do: for we bid this be done,
When evil deeds have their permissive pass,
And not the punishment. Therefore, indeed,my father,
I have on Angelo impos'd the office;

Who may, in the ambush of my name, strike home,
And yet my nature never in the sight,

To do it slander: and to behold his sway,
I will, as 'twere a brother of your order,
Visit both prince and people; therefore, Ipr'ythee,
Supply me with the habit, and instruct me,
How I may formally in person bear me,

Like a true friar! More reasons for this action,
At our more leisure shall I render you;
Only, this one:-Lord Angelo is precise,
Stands at a guard with envy, scarce confesses,
That his blood flows, or that his appetite

Is more to bread than stone: hence shall we see,
If power change purpose, what our seemers be.

SCENE V.-Anunnery.




Isab. And have you nuns no further privileges?
Fran. Are not these large enough?
Isab. Yes, truly: I speak not as desiring more;
But rather wishing a more strict restraint
Upon the sisterhood, the votarists of saint Clare.
Lucio. Ho! peace be in this place!
Isab. Who's that which calls?
Fran. It is a man's voice. Gentle Isabella,
Turn you the key, and know his business of him;
You may, I may not; you are yet unsworn:
When you have vow'd, you must not speak with men,
But in the presence of the prioress:
Then, if you speak, you must not show your face;
Or, if you show your face, you must not speak.
He calls again; I pray you, answer him.

[Exit Francisca. Isab. Peace and prosperity! Who is't that calls? Enter LUCIO.

As those that feed grow full; as blossoming time,
That from the seeduess the bare fallow brings
To teeming foison, even so her plenteous womb
Expresseth his full tilth and husbandry.

Lucio. Hail, virgin, if you be, as those cheek-roses'
Proclaim you are no less! Can you so stead me,
As bring me to the sight of Isabella,
A novice of this place, and the fair sister
To her unhappy brother Claudio?

Isab. Why her unhappy brother? let me ask;
The rather, for I now must make you know,

I am that Isabella, and his sister.

Isab.Some one with child by him?-My cousin Juliet?
Lucio. Is she your cousin?

Isab. Adoptedly; as school-maids change their
By vain, though apt affection.
Lucio. She it is.

Isab. O, let him marry her!
Lucio. This is the point.

The duke is very strangely gone from hence;
Bore many gentlemen, myself being one,
In hand, and hope of action: but we do learn
By those that know the very nerves of state,
His givings out were of an infinite distance
From his true-meant design. Upon his place,
And with full line of his authority,
Governs lord Angelo; a man, whose blood
Is very snow-broth; one who never feels
The wanton stings and motions of the sense;
But doth rebate and blunt his natural edge
With profits of the mind, study and fast.
He (to give fear to use and liberty,
Which have, for long, run by the hideous law,
As mice by lions,) hath pick'd out an act,
Under whose heavy sense your brother's life
Falls into forfeit: he arrests him on it,
And follows close the rigour of the statute,
To make him an example: all hope is gone,
Unless you have the grace by your fair prayer
To soften Angelo: and that's my pith

Of business 'twixt you and your poor brother.
Isab. Doth he so seek his life?
Lucio. H'as censur'd him

Already; and, as I hear, the provost hath
A warrant for his execution.

Isab. Alas! what poor ability's in me
To do him good?

Lucio. Assay the power you have!
Isab. My power! Alas! I doubt,—
Lucio. Our doubts are traitors,


And make us lose the good we oft might win,
By fearing to attempt. Go to lord Angelo,
And let him learn to know, when maidens sue,
Men give like gods; but when they weep and kneel,
All their petitions are as freely theirs,
As they themselves would owe them.
Isab. I'll see what I can do.
Lucio. But speedily!

Isab. I will about it straight;
No longer staying but to give the mother
Notice of my all'air. I humbly thank you:
Commend me to my brother: soon at night
I'll send him certain word of my success.

Lucio.Gentle and fair, your brother kindly greets you: Lucio. I take my leave of you.

Not to be weary with you, he's in prison.

Isab. Woe me! For what?

Lucio.For that, which, if myself might be his judge,

He should receive his punishment in thanks:

He hath got his friend with child.

Isab. Sir, make me not your story!

Lucio. It is true.

I would not-though 'tis my familiar sin,

With maids to seem the lapwing, and to jest,
Tongne far from heart,-play with all virgins so:
I hold you as a thing ensky'd, and sainted,
By your renouncement, an immortal spirit,
And to be talk'd with in sincerity,
As with a saint.

Isab. You do blaspheme the good, in mocking me.
Lucio. Do not believe it. Fewness and truth, 'tis thus:
Your brother and his lover have embrac'd;

Isab. Good sir, adieu!



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That, in the working of your own affections,
Had time coher'd with place, or place with wishing,
Or that the resolute acting of your blood
Could have attain'd the effect of your own purpose,
Whether you had not, sometime in your life,
Err'd in this point, which now you censure him,
And pull'd the law upon you.

Ang. "Tis one thing to be tempted, Escalus,
Another thing to fall. I not deny,

The jury, passing on the prisoner's life,
May, in the sworn twelve, have a thief or two
Guiltier, than him they try. What's open made to jus-
That justice seizes. What know the laws, tice,
That thieves do pass on thieves? 'Tis very pregnant,
The jewel that we find, we stoop and take it,
Because we see it; but what we do not see,
We tread upon, and never think of it.
You may not so extenuate his offence,
For I have had such faults; but rather tell me,
When I, that censure him, do so offend,
Let miue own judgment pattern out my death,
And nothing come in partial. Sir, he must die.
Escal. Be it as your wisdom will.

Ang. Where is the provost ?

Prov. Here, if it like your honour.
Ang. See, that Claudio

Be executed by nine to-morrow morning:
Bring him his confessor, let him be prepar'd!

Elb. Ay, sir, by mistress Over-done's means: but
as she spit in his face, so she defied him.

Clo. Sir, if it please your honour, this is not so.
Elb. Prove it before these varlets here, thou honour-
able man, prove it!

For that's the utmost of his pilgrimage.[Exit Provost.
Escal. Well, heaven forgive him! and forgive us all!
Some rise by sin, and some by virtue fall:
Some run from brakes ofvice, and answer none;
And some condemned for a fault alone.

Escal. Do you hear, how he misplaces? [To Angelo.
Clo. Sir, she came in great with child; and longing
(saving your honour's reverence,) for stew'd prunes;
sir, we had but two in the house, which at that very
distant time stood, as it were, in a fruit-dish, a dish
of some three-pence; your honours have seen such
dishes ;they are not China dishes,but very good dishes.
Escal. Go to, go to; no matter for the dish, sir.
Clo. No, indeed, sir, not of a pin; you are therein in
the right; but, to the point: As I say, this mistress
Elbow, being, as I say, with child, and being great bel-
ly'd, and longing, as I said, for prunes, and having but
two in the dish, as I said, master Froth here, this very
man, having eaten the rest, as I said, and, as I say, pay-
ing for them very honestly ;-for, as you know, master
Froth, I could not give you three-pence again.
Froth. No, indeed.

Enter ELBOW, FROTH, Clown, Officers, etc. Elb. Come, bring them away! If these be good people in a common-weal, that do nothing but use their abuses in common houses,I know no law; bring them away! Ang. How now, sir! What's your name? and what's the matter?

Clo. Very well: you being then, if you be remember'd, cracking the stones of the foresaid prunes..

Froth. Ay, so I did, indeed.

Clo. Why, very well: I telling you then, if you be remember'd, that such a one, and such a one, were past cure of the thing you wot of, unless they kept very good diet, as I told you.

Froth. All this is true.
Clo. Why, very well then.

Escal. Come, you are a tedious fool: to the purpose!
-What was done to Elbow's wife, that he hath cause
to complain of? Come me to what was done to her.
Clo. Sir, your honour cannot come to that yet.
Escal. No, sir, nor I mean it not.

Clo. Sir, but you shall come to it, by your honour's
leave: and, I beseech you,look into master Froth here,
sir; a man of fourscore pound a year; whose father
died at Hallowmas :-Was't not at Hallowmas, master

Elb. If it please your honour, I am the poor duke's constable, and my name is Elbow; I do lean upon jus-Froth? tice, sir, and do bring in here before your good honour two notorious benefactors.

Ang. Benefactors? Well; what benefactors are they? are they not malefactors?

Elb. Ifit please your honour, I know not well, what they are: but precise villains they are, that I am sure of; and void of all profanation in the world, that good christians ought to have.

Escal. This comes off well; here's a wise officer.
Ang. Go to! What quality are they of? Elbow is your
name? Why dost thou not speak, Elbow?
Clo. He cannot, sir, he's out at elbow.
Ang. What are you, sir?

Elb. He, sir! a tapster, sir; parcel-bawd; one that serves a bad woman; whose house, sir, was, as they say, pluck'd down in the suburbs; and now she professes a hot-house, which, I think,is a very ill house too. Escal. How know you that?

Elb. My wife, sir, whom I detest before heaven and your honour,

Escal. How! thy wife?

Froth. All-hollond eve.

Clo. Why, very well; I hope here be truths: he, sir, sitting, as I say, in a lower chair, sir;— 'twas in the Bunch of Grapes, where, indeed, you have a delight to sit: have you not?

Froth. I have so; because it is an open room, and good for winter.

Clo. Why, very well then I hope here be truths.
Ang. This will last out a night in Russia,
When nights are longest there: I'll take my leave,
And leave you to the hearing of the cause;
Hoping, you'll find good cause to whip them all.
Escal. I think no less: good morrow to your lord-
[Exit Angelo.
Now, sir, come on! What was done to Elbow's wife,
once more?

Clo. Once, sir? there was nothing done to her once. Elb. I beseech you, sir, ask him, what this man did to my wife.

Clo. I beseech your honour, ask me.
Escal. Well, sir: what did this gentleman to her?

Elb. Ay, sir; whom, I thank heaven, is an honest Clo. I beseech you, sir, look in this gentleman's face!


Escal. Dost thou detest her therefore?

Elb. I say, sir, I will detest myself also, as well as she, that this house, ifit be not a bawd's house, it is pity of her life, for it is a naughty house. Escal. How dost thou know that, constable? Elb. Marry, sir, by my wife; who, if she had been a woman cardinally given, might have been accused in fornication, adultery, and all uncleanliness there. Escal. By the woman's means?


Good master Froth, look upon his honour; 'tis for good purpose:- doth your honour mark his face? Escal. Ay, sir, very well.

Clo. Nay, I beseech you, mark it well!
Escal. Well, I do so.

Clo. Doth your honour see any harm in his face?
Escal. Why, no.

Clo.I'll be supposed upon a book, his face is the worst thing about him. Good then; if his face be the worst thing about him, how could master Froth do the con

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stable's wife any harm? I would know that of your honour.

Escal.He's in the right. Constable, what say you to it? Elb. First, an it like you, the house is a respected house; next, this is a respected fellow; and his mistress is a respected woman.

Clo. By this hand, sir, his wife is a more respected person, than any of us all.

Elb. Varlet, thou liest; thou liest, wicked varlet! the time is yet to come, that she was ever respected with man, woman, or child.

Clo. Sir, she was respected with him before he married with her.

Escal. Which is the wiser here? Justice, or Iniquity? Is this true?

Elb. O thou caitiff! O thou varlet! O thou wicked Hannibal! I respected with her, before I was married to her! If ever I was respected with her, or she with me, let not your worship think me the poor duke's officer! -Prove this, thou wicked Hannibal, or I'll have mine action of battery on thee!

Escal. If he took you a box o' the ear, you might have your action of slander too!

Elb. Marry, I thank your good worship for it. What is't your worship's pleasure I should do with this

wicked caitiff?

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Clo. Mistress Over-done.

Escal. Hath she had any more than one husband? Clo. Nine, sir; Over-done by the last. Escal. Nine! Come hither to me, master Froth. Master Froth, I would not have you acquainted with tapsters; they will draw you, master Froth, and you will hang them. Get you gone,and let me hear no more of you!

Froth.I thank your worship.For mine own part, I never come into any room in a taphouse, but I am drawn in. Escal. Well; no more of it, master Froth: farewell! [Exit Froth.]-Come you hither to me, master tapster; what's your name, master tapster? Clo. Pompey.

Escal. What else? Clo. Bum, sir.



Clo. Truly, sir, in my poor opinion, they will to't then: if your worship will take order for the drabs and the knaves, you need not to fear the bawds.

Escal. There are pretty orders beginning, I can tell you: it is but heading and hanging.

Clo. If you head and hang all that offend that way but for ten year together, you'll be glad to give out a commission for more heads. If this law hold in Vienna ten year, I'll rent the fairest house in it, after threepence a bay if you live to see this come to pass, say, Pompey told you so.

Escal. Troth, and your bum is the greatest thing about you; so that, in the beastliest sense, you are Pompey the great. Pompey, you are partly a bawd, Pompey, howsoever you colour it in being a tapster. not? come, tell me true; it shall be the better for you. Clo. Truly, sir, I am a poor fellow, that would live. Escal. How would you live, Pompey? by being a bawd? What do you think of the trade, Pompey? is it a lawful trade?

Clo. If the law would allow it, sir. Escal. But the law will not allow it, Pompey; nor it shall not be allowed in Vienna.

Clo. Does your worship mean to geld and spay all the youths in the city?

Escal. No, Pompey.

Escal. Thank you, good Pompey: and, in requital of your prophecy, hark you, I advise you, let me not find you before me again upon any complaint whatsoever,no,not for dwelling where you do: if I do, Pompey, I shall beat you to your tent, and prove a shrewd Caesar to you; in plain dealing, Pompey, I shall have you whipt: so for this time, Pompey, fare you well! Clo. I thank your worship for your good counsel; but shall follow it, as the flesh and fortune shall better determine. Whip me? No, no; let carman whip his jade; The valiant heart's not whipt out of his trade. [Exit. Escal. Come hither to me, master Elbow; come hither, master Constable! How long have you been in this place of constable?


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Ang. Now, what's the matter, provost?
Prov. Is it your will, Claudio shall die to-morrow?
Ang. Did not tell thee, yea? hadst thou not order?
Why dost thou ask again?

Prov. Lest I might be too rash.
When, after execution, judgment hath
Under your good correction, I have seen,
Repented o'er his doom.

Ang. Go to; let that be mine!

Do you your office, or give up your place,
And shall well be spar'd.

Prov. I crave your honour's pardon.

What shall be done, sir, with the groaning Juliet?
She's very near her hour.
Ang. Dispose of her

To some more fitter place; and that with speed.

Re-enter Servant.

Serv. Here is the sister of the man condemn'd, Desires access to you.

Ang. Hath he a sister?

Prov. Ay, my good lord; a very virtuous maid, And to be shortly of a sisterhood,

If not already.

Ang. Well, let her be admitted!

See you, the fornicatress be remov'd;

No; I would tell what 'twere to be a judge, And what a prisoner.

Lucio. Ay, touch him: there's the vein ! Ang. Your brother is a forfeit of the law, And you but waste your words.

Isab. Alas! alas!


Why, all the souls, that were, were forfeit once;
And He, that might the vantage best have took,
Found ont the remedy: how would you be,
Ifhe, which is the top of judgment, should
But judge you as you are? O, think on that;
And mercy then will breathe within your lips,
Like man new made.

Ang. Be you content, fair maid;

[Exit Servant. It is the law, not I, condemus your brother:
Were he my kinsman, brother, or my son,

Let her have needful, but not lavish, means; There shall be order for it..

Enter Lucio and ISABELLA.

Prov. Save your honour!

[Offering to retire.

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He's not prepar'd for death! Even for our kitchens

Ang. Stay a little while.- [To Isab.] You are wel-We kill the fowl of season; shall we serve heaven

come. What's your will?

Isab. I am a woeful suitor to your honour, Please but your honour hear me.

Ang. Well; what's your suit?

Isab. There is a vice, that most I do abhor,

And most desire should meet the blow of justice;
For which I would not plead, but that I must;
For which I must not plead, but tha I am
At war, twixt will, and will not.

Ang. Well, the matter?

Isab. I have a brother is condemn'd to die:
I do beseech you, let it be his fault,
And not my brother.

Prov. Heaven give thee moving graces!

Ang. Condemn the fault, and not the actor of it!
Why, every fault's condemn'd, ere it be done:
Mine were the very cypher of a function,

To fine the faults, whose fine stands in record,
And let go by the actor.

Isab. Öjust, but severe law!

I had a brother then.-Heaven keep your honour!


Lucio. [To Isab.] Give't not o'er so: to him again,
intreat him;

Kneel down before him, hang upon his gown!
You are too cold: if you should need a pin,

You could not with more tame a tongue desire it:
To him, I say!

Isab. Must he needs die?

Ang. Maiden, no remedy!

Isab. Yes; I do think that you might pardon him, And neither heaven, nor man, grieve at the mercy. Ang. I will not do't.

Isab. But can you, ifyou would?

Ang. Look, what I will not, that I cannot do.

Isab. But might you do't, and do the world no wrong,
If so your heart were touch'd with that remorse,
As mine is to him?

Ang. He's sentenc'd; 'tis too late.

Lucio. You are too cold.

With less respect, than we do minister

To our gross selves? Good, good my lord, bethink you: Who is it that hath died for this offence?

[To Isabella.


have committed it. many Lucio. Ay, well said.

Ang. The law hath not been dead, though it hath slept:

Those many had not dar'd to do that evil,

If the first man, that did the edict infringe,
Tad answer'd for his deed: now, 'tis awake,
Takes note of what is done, and, like a prophet,
Looks in a glass, that shows what future evils,
(Either now, or by remissness new-conceiv'd,
And so in progress to be hatch'd and boru,)
Are now to have no successive degrees,

Isab. Too late? why, no. I, that do speak a word,
May call it back again: well believe this,
No ceremony that to great ones 'longs,
Not the king's crown, nor the deputed sword,
The marshal's truncheon, nor the judge's robe,
Become them with one half so good a grace,
As mercy does. If he had been as you,
And you as he, you would have slipt, like him;
But he, like you, would not have been so stern.
Ang. Pray you, begone!

Isab. I would to heaven, I had your potency,
And you were Isabel! should it then be thus?

But, where they live, to end.

Isab. Yet, show some pity!

Ang. I show it most of all, when I show justice;
For then I pity those I do not know,

Which a dismiss'd offence would after gall;
And do him right, that, answering one foul wrong,
Lives not to act another. Be satisfied;
Your brother dies to-morrow: be content!

Isab. So you must be the first,that gives this sentence, And he, that suffers. O, it is excellent

To have a giant's strength; but it is tyrannous,
To use it like a giant.

Lucio. That's well said.

Isab. Could great men thunder

As Jove himself does, Jove would ne'er be quiet,
For every pelting, petty officer,

Would use his heaven for thunder; nothing butthun-
Merciful heaven!

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Thou rather, with thy sharp and sulphurous bolt,
Split'st the unwedgeable and gnarled oak,
Than the soft myrtle: O, but mau, proud man!
Drest in a little brief authorithy,
Most ignorant of what he's most assur'd,
His glassy essence, like an angry ape,
Plays such fantastic tricks before high heaven,
As make the angels weep; who, with our spleens,
Would all themselves laugh mortal.

Lucio. 0, to him, to him, wench! he will relent; He's coming, I perceive't.

Prov. Pray heaven, she win him!

Isab. We cannot weigh our brother with ourself: Great men may jest with saints: 'tis wit in them; But, in the less, foul profanation.

Lucio. Thou'rt in the right, girl; more o' that! Isab. That in the captain's but a choleric word, Which in the soldier is flat blasphemy.

Lucio. Art advis'd o' that? more on't!

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Ang. Why do you put these sayings upon me?
Isab. Because authority, though it err, like others,
Hath yet a kind of medicine in itself,

That skins the vice o' the top. Go to your bosom;
Knock there, and ask your heart, what it doth know
That's like my brother's fault: if it confess

A natural guiltiness, such as is his,

Letit not sound a thought upon your tongue

Against my brother's life!

Ang. She speaks, and 'tis

I come to visit the afflicted spirits

Here in the prison: do me the common right
To let me see them; and to make me know
The nature of their crimes, that I may minister
To them accordingly.

Prov.I would do more than that, if more were needful.

Look, here comes one; a gentlewoman of mine
Who, falling in the flames of her own youth,
Hath blister'd her report: she is with child;

Such sense, that my sense breeds with it. - Fare you And he, that got it, sentenc'd: a young man well!

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Shall I attend your lordship?
Ang. At any time'fore noon.
Isab. Save your honour!

More fit to do another such offence,
Than die for this!

Duke. When must he die?

Prov. As I do think, to-morrow.have provided for you; stay a while, And you shall be conducted.


[To Juliet.

Duke. Repent you, fair one, of the sin you carry?
Juliet. I do; and bear the shame most patiently.
Duke. I'll teach you how you shall arraign your con-

And try your penitence, if it be sound,
Or hollowly put on.

Juliet. I'll gladly learn.

Duke. Love you the man that wrong'd you?

Juliet. Yes, as I love the woman that wrong'd him. Duke. So then, it seems, your most offenceful act Was mutually committed?

Juliet. Mutually.

Duke. Then was your sin of heavier kind, than his.
Juliet. I do confess it, and repent it, father.

Duke. 'Tis meet so, daughter: but lest you do repent, [Aside. As that the sin hath brought you to this shame,

[Exeunt Lucio, Isabella, and Provost.
Ang. From thee; even from thy virtue! -
What's this? what's this? Is this her fault, or mine?
The tempter, or the tempted, who sins most? Ha!
Not she; nor doth she tempt: but it is I,
That lying by the violet, in the sun,

Do, as the carrion does, not as the flower,
Corrupt with virtuous season. Can it be,
That modesty may more betray our sense,

Than woman's lightness? Having waste ground

Shall we desire to raze the sanctuary,
And pitch our evils there? O, fy, fy, fy!
What dost thou? or what art thou, Angelo?
Dost thou desire her foully, for those things
That make her good? O, let her brother live:
Thieves for their robbery have authority,

When judges steal themselves. What? do I love her,
That I desire to hear her speak again,

And feast upon her eyes? Whast is't I dream on?
O cunning enemy, that, to catch a saint,
With saints dost bait thy hook! Most dangerous
Is that temptation, that doth goad us on

To sin in loving virtue: never could the strumpet,
With all her double vigour, art, and nature,
Once stir my temper; but this virtuous maid
Subdues me quite:-ever, till now,
When men were fond, I smil'd, and wonder'd

Which sorrow is always toward ourselves, not heaven;
Showing, we'd not spare heaven, as we love it,

But as we stand in fear,

Juliet. I do repent me, as it is an evil;
And take the shame with joy.

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SCENE IV. - A room in Angelo's house.
Enter ANGElo.

Ang. When I would pray and think, I think and pray
To several subjects: heaven hath my empty words;
Whilst my invention, hearing not my tongue,
Anchors on Isabel: Heaven in my mouth,
As if I did but only chew his name;
And in my heart the strong and swelling evil
Of my conception: the state, whereon I studied,
Is like a good thing, being often read,
Grown fear'd and tedious; yea, my gravity,
Wherein (let no man hear me) I take pride,
Could I, with boot, change for an idle plume,
Which the air beats for vain. O place! O form!
How often dost thou with thy case, thy habit,
Wrench awe from fools, and tie the wiser souls
To thy false seeming? Blood, thou still art blood:
Let's write good angel on the devil's horn,
how.'Tis not the devil's crest.-


SCENE III. — A room in aprison.
Enter Duke, habited like a Friar, and Provost.
Duke. Hail to you, provost; so, I think you are.
Prov. I am the provost. What's your will,good friar?
Duke. Bound by my charity, and my bless'd order,

Enter Servant.

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