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They should not laugh, if I could reach them; nor Shall she, within my power.

Enter PAULINA, with a Child. You must not enter. Paul. Nay, rather, good my lords, be second to

1 Lord.


Fear you his tyrannous passion more, alas,
Than the queen's life? a gracious innocent soul;
More free, than he is jealous.


That's enough. 1 Attend. Madam, he hath not slept to-night; commanded

None should come at him.

Not so hot, good sir;
'Tis such as you,

I come to bring him sleep.
That creep like shadows by him, and do sigh
At each his needless heavings, -
such as you
Nourish the cause of his awaking: I
Do come with words as med'cinal as true;
Honest, as either; to purge him of that humour,
That presses him from sleep.

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Leon. What noise there, ho? Paul. No noise, my lord; but needful conference, About some gossips for your highness.


How? Away with that audacious lady: Antigonus, I charg'd thee, that she should not come about


I knew, she would.
I told her so, my lord,
On your displeasure's peril, and on mine,
She should not visit you.

Leon. What, canst not rule her? Paul. From all dishonesty, he can in this, (Unless he take the course that you have done, Commit me, for committing honour,) trust it, He shall not rule me.

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Thou, dotard, [to ANTIGONUS.] thou art woman. tir'd, unroosted

Than you are mad; which is enough, I'll warrant, As this world goes, to pass for honest.

Leon. Traitors! Will you not push her out? Give her the bastard

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A callat,

Of boundless tongue; who late hath beat her hus-
And now baits me! This brat is none of mine;
It is the issue of Polixenes :

Hence with it; and, together with the dam,
Commit them to the fire.


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It is yours;

And, might we lay the old proverb to your charge,
So like you, 'tis the worse. — Behold, my lords,
Although the print be little, the whole matter
And copy of the father: eye, nose, lip,

The trick of his frown, his forehead; nay, the valley, The pretty dimples of his chin, and cheek; his smiles;


The very mould and frame of hand, nail, finger:
And thou, good goddess nature, which hast made it
So like to him that got it, if thou hast

The ordering of the mind too, 'mongst all colours
No yellow in't; lest she suspect, as he does,
Her children not her husband's!

Leon. Paul.

Leon. A gross hag!. And, lozel, thou art worthy to be hang'd, That wilt not stay her tongue.

Ant. Hang all the husbands, That cannot do that feat, you'll leave yourself Hardly one subject. Leon." Once more, take her hence. Paul. A most unworthy and unnatural lord Can do no more.

I'll have thee burn'd.

It is an heretick, that makes the fire,
Not she, which burn's in't.


I care not,

I'll not call you


But this most cruel usage of your queen (Not able to produce more accusation Than your own weak-hing'd fancy,) something


Of tyranny, and will ignoble make you, Yea, scandalous to the world.

Leon. On your allegiance, Out of the chamber with her. Were I a tyrant, Where were her life? she durst not call me so, If she did know me one. Away with her.

Paul. I pray you, do not push me; I'll be gone.

Look to your babe, my lord; 'tis yours: Jove send


A better guiding spirit!-What need these hands?—
You, that are thus so tender o'er his follies,
Will never do him good, not one of you.
So, so:- Farewell; we are gone,


Leon. Thou, traitor, hast set on thy wife to this.My child? away with't! —even thou, that hast A heart so tender o'er it, take it hence, And see it instantly consum'd with fire; Even thou, and none but thou.

Take it up


Within this hour bring me word 'tis done,
(And by good testimony,) or I'll seize thy life,
With what thou else call'st thine: If thou refuse,*
And wilt encounter with my wrath, say so;
The bastard brains with these my proper hands
Shall I dash out. Go, take it to the fire;
For thou sett'st on thy wife.


I did not, sir: These lords, my noble fellows, if they please, Can clear me in't.

1 Lord. We can, my royal liege, He is not guilty of her coming hither. Leon. You are liars all.

1 Lord. 'Beseech your highness, give us better

credit ;

We have always truly serv'd you; and beseech
So to esteem of us: And on our knees we beg,
(As recompense of our dear services,
Past, and to come,) that you do change this pur-

pose; Which, being so horrible, so bloody, must Lead on to some foul issue: We all kneel.

Leon. I am a feather for each wind that blows: Shall I live on, to see this bastard kneel And call me father? Better burn it now, Than curse it then. But, be it; let it live: It shall not neither. — You, sir, come you hither; [To ANTIGONUS.

You, that have been so tenderly officious
With lady Margery, your midwife, there,
To save this bastard's life: for 'tis a bastard,
So sure as this beard's grey, what will

To save this brat's life?

Any thing, my lord,
That my ability may undergo,
And nobleness impose: at least, thus much;


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The same. A Street in some Town. Enter CLEOMENES and DION.

Cleo. The climate's delicate; the air most sweet; Fertile the isle; the temple much surpassing

The common praise it bears.


Of the grave wearers. O, the sacrifice! How ceremonious, solemn, and unearthly It was i'the offering!


But, of all, the burst

Dion. I shall report, For most it caught me, the celestial habits, (Methinks, I so should term them,) and the


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Of any point in't shall not only be

Death to thyself, but to thy lewd-tongu'd wife;
Whom, for this time, we pardon. We enjoin thee,
As thou art liegeman to us, that thou carry
This female bastard hence; and that thou bear it
To some remote and desert place, quite out
Of our dominions; and that there thou leave it,
Without more mercy, to its own protection,
And favour of the climate. As by strange fortune
It came to us, I do in justice charge thee,
On thy soul's peril, and thy body's torture,
That thou commend strangely to some place,
Where chance may nurse, or end it: Take it up.

Ant. I swear to do this, though a present death
Had been more merciful. Come on, poor babe :
Some powerful spirit instruct the kites and ravens,
To be thy nurses! Wolves, and bears, they say,
Casting their savageness aside, have done
Like offices of pity. Sir, be prosperous
In more than this deed doth require! and blessing,
Against this cruelty, fight on thy side,
Poor thing, condemn'd to loss!

Leon. Another's issue.


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1 Atten. Please your highness, posts, From those you sent to the oracle, are come An hour since: Cleomenes and Dion,

[Exit, with the Child. No, I'll not rear

Being well arriv'd from Delphos, are both landed, Hasting to the court.

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1 Lord.

So please you, sir, their speed Hath been beyond account.


Twenty-three days

They have been absent: 'Tis good speed; foretels,
The great Apollo suddenly will have
The truth of this appear. Prepare you, lords;
Summon a session, that we may arraign
Our most disloyal lady: for, as she hath
Been publickly accus'd, so shall she have
A just and open trial. While she lives,
My heart will be a burden to me.
And think upon my bidding.

Leave me ;


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Cleo. Great Apollo, Turn all to the best! These proclamations, So forcing faults upon Hermione, I little like. Dion. The violent carriage of it Will clear, or end, the business: When the oracle, (Thus by Apollo's great divine seal'd nr.) Shall the contents discover, something rare,



The same.

A Court of Justice.
LEONTES, Lords, and Officers, appear properly

Leon. This sessions (to our great grief, we pronounce,)

Even pushes 'gainst our heart: The party tried,
The daughter of a king; our wife; and one
Of us too much belov'd.. Let us be clear'd
Of being tyrannous, since we so openly
Proceed in justice; which shall have due course,
Even to the guilt, or the purgation.
Produce the prisoner.

Even then will rush to knowledge. fresh horses;

And gracious be the issue!

Offi. It is his highness' pleasure, that the queen Appear in person here in court.

· Silence! HERMIONE is brought in, guarded; PAULINA and Ladies, attending. Leon. Read the indictment.

Offi. Hermione, queen to the worthy Leontes, king of Sicilia, thou art here accused and arraigned of high treason, in committing adultery with Polixenes, king of Bohemia; and conspiring with Camillo to take away the life of our sovereign lord the king, thy royal husband: the pretence whereof being by circumstances partly laid open, thou, Hermione, contrary to the faith and allegiance of a true subject, didst counsel and aid them, for their better safety, to fly away by night.

Her. Since what I am to say, must be but that Which contradicts my accusation; and The testimony on my part, no other But what comes from myself; it shall scarce boot ine To say, Not guilty; mine integrity, Being counted falsehood, shall, as I express it, Be so receiv'd. But thus, If powers divine Behold our human actions, (as they do,) I doubt not then, but innocence shall make False accusation blush, and tyranny

Tremble at patience. - You, my lord, best know,
(Who least will seem to do so,) my past life
Hath been as continent, as chaste, as true,
As I am now unhappy; which is more
Than history can pattern, though devis'd,
And play'd, to take spectators: For behold me,
A fellow of the royal bed, which owe

A moiety of the throne, a great king's daughter,
The mother to a hopeful prince, here standing,
To prate and talk for life, and honour 'fore
Who please to come and hear. For life, I prize it,
As I weigh grief, which I would spare: for honour,
'Tis a derivative from me to mine,
And only that I stand for. I appeal

To your own conscience, sir, before Polixenes
Came to your court, how I was in your grace,
How merited to be so; since he came,
With what encounter so uncurrent I
Have strain'd, to appear thus: if one jot beyond
The bound of honour; or, in act, or will,
That way inclining; harden'd be the hearts
Of all that hear me, and my near'st of kin
Cry, Fye upon my grave!

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Leon. I ne'er heard yet, That any of these bolder vices wanted Less impudence to gainsay what they did, Than to perform it first.

Her. That's true enough; Though 'tis a saying, sir, not due to me. Leon. You will not own it. Her. More than mistress of, Which comes to me in name of fault, I must not At all acknowledge. For Polixenes, (With whom I am accus'd,) I do confess,

lov'd him, as in honour he requir'd; With such a kind of love, as might become A lady like me; with a love, even such, So, and no other, as yourself commanded: Which not to have done, I think, had been in me Both disobedience and ingratitude,

To you, and toward your friend; whose love had spoke,

Even since it could speak, from an infant, freely,
That it was yours.
Now, for conspiracy,

I know not how it tastes; though it be dish'd
For me to try how: all I know of it,
Is, that Camillo was an honest man;

And, why he left your court, the gods themselves, Wotting no more than I, are ignorant.

Leon. You knew of his departure, as you know What you have underta'en to do in his absence.

Her. Sir,

You speak a language that I understand not: My life stands in the level of your dreams, Which I'll lay down.


Your actions are my dreams; You had a bastard by Polixenes, And I but dream'd it: - As you were past all shame, (Those of your fact are so,) so past all truth: Which to deny, concerns more than avails: For as

Thy brat hath been cast out, like to itself,
No father owning it, (which is, indeed,
More criminal in thee, than it,) so thou
Shalt feel our justice; in whose easiest passage,
Look for no less than death.


Sir, spare your threats; The bug, which you would fright me with, I seek. To me can life be no commodity :

The crown and comfort of my life, your favour,
I do give lost; for I do feel it gone,

But know not how it went: My second joy,
And first-fruits of my body, from his presence,
I am barr'd, like one infectious: My third comfort,
Starr'd most unluckily, is from my breast,

The innocent milk in its most innocent mouth,
Haled out to murder: Myself on every post
Proclaim'd a strumpet; with immodest hatred,
The child-bed privilege denied, which 'longs
To women of all fashion : - Lastly, hurried
Here to this place, i' the open air, before
I have got strength of limit. Now, my liege,
Tell me what blessings I have here alive,
That I should fear to die? Therefore, proceed.
But yet hear this; mistake me not; No! life,
I prize it not a straw :— but for mine honour,
(Which I would free,) if I shall be condemn'd
Upon surmises; all proofs sleeping else,
But what your jealousies awake; I tell you
'Tis rigour, and not law. Your honours all,
I do refer me to the oracle?
Apollo be my judge.

1 Lord.

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This your request Is altogether just therefore, bring forth, And in Apollo's name, his oracle.

[Exeunt certain Officers. Her. The emperor of Russia was my father:

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New woo my queen; recal the good Camillo ;
Whom I proclaim a man of truth, of mercy:
For, being transported by my jealousies
To bloody thoughts and to revenge, I chose
Camillo for the minister, to poison

My friend Polixenes: which had been done,
But that the good mind of Camillo tardied
My swift command, though I with death, and with
Reward, did threaten and encourage him,
Not doing it, and being done: he, most humane,
And fill'd with honour, to my kingly guest
Unclasp'd my practice; quit his fortunes here,
Which you knew great; and to the certain hazard
Of all incertainties himself commended,

No richer than his honour: How he glisters

Thorough my rust! and how his piety Does my deeds make the blacker!

Re-enter PAULINA.


Woe the while! O, cut my lace; lest my heart, cracking it, Break too!

1 Lord. What fit is this, good lady?


Paul. What studied torments, tyrant, hast for me? What wheels? racks? fires? What flaying? boiling, In leads, or oils? what old, or newer torture Must I receive; whose every word deserves To taste of thy most worst? Thy tyranny Together working with thy jealousies, Fancies too weak for boys, too green and idle For girls of nine! · O, think, what they have done, And then run mad, indeed; stark mad! for all Thy by-gone fooleries were but spices of it. That thou betray'dst Polixenes, 'twas nothing; That did but show thee, of a fool, inconstant, And damnable ungrateful: nor was't much, Thou would'st have poison'd good Camillo's honour, To have him kill a king; poor trespasses, More monstrous standing by: whereof I reckon The casting forth to cre thy baby daughter, To be or none, or little; though a devil Would have shed water out of fire, ere don't: Nor is't directly laid to thee, the death

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queen, The sweetest, dearest, creature's dead; and vengeance for't Not dropp'd down yet. 1 Lord. The higher powers forbid ' Paul. I say, she's dead: I'll swear't: if word, nor oath,

Prevail not, go and see if you can bring
Tincture, or lustre, in her lip, her eye,
Heat outwardly, or breath within, I'll serve you
As I would do the gods, But, O thou tyrant !
Do not repent these things; for they are heavier
Than all thy woes can stir: therefore betake thee
To nothing but despair. A thousand knees
Ten thousand years together, naked, fasting,
Upon a barren mountain, and still winter
In storm perpetual, could not move the gods
To look that way thou wert.

Go on, go on :
Thou canst not speak too much; I have deserv'd
All tongues to talk their bitterest.

1 Lord. Say no more; Howe'er the business goes, you have made fault I'the boldness of your speech.

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Paul. I am sorry for't; All faults I make, when I shall come to know them, I do repent: Alas, I have show'd too much The rashness of a woman: he is touch'd To the noble heart. What's gone, and what's past

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Who is lost too: Take your patience to you,
And I'll say nothing.

Thou didst speak but well,
When most the truth; which I receive much better
Than to be pitied of thee. Pr'ythee, bring me
To the dead bodies of my queen, and son :
One grave shall be for both; upon them shall
The causes of their death appear, unto
Our shame perpetual: Once a day I'll visit
The chapel where they lie; and tears, shed there,
Shall be my recreation: So long as
Nature will bear up with this exercise,
So long I daily vow to use it. Come,
And lead me to these sorrows.



Bohemia. A desert Country
near the Sea.

Enter ANTIGONUS, with the Child; and a Mariner.
Ant. Thou art perfect then, our ship hath touch'd

The deserts of Bohemia?



Ay, my lord; and fear We have landed in ill time: the skies look grimly, And threaten present blusters. In my conscience, The heavens with that we have in hand are angry, And frown upon us.

Ant. Their sacred wills be done!


Look to thy bark; I'll not be long, before
I call upon thee.

Mar. Make your best haste; and go not
Too far i'the land: 'tis like to be loud weather;
Besides, this place is famous for the creatures
Of prey, that keep upon't.


Go thou away:

I am glad at heart

I'll follow instantly.


To be so rid o'the business.

[Eart. I have heard, (but not believ'd,) the spirits of the


Come, poor babe :


May walk again: if such thing be, thy mother
Appear'd to me last night; for ne'er was dream
So like a waking. To me comes a creature,
Sometimes her head on one side, some another;
I never saw a vessel of like sorrow,

Either for life, or death, upon the earth
Of its right father. Blossom, speed thee well!
[Laying down the Child.
There lie; and there thy character: there these;
[Laying down a bundle.
Which may, if fortune please, both breed thee pretty,
And still rest thine.- The storm begins:- Poor


So fill'd, and so becoming in pure white robes,
Like very sanctity, she did, approach
My cabin where I lay thrice bow'd before me;
And, gasping to begin some speech, her eyes
Became two spouts: the fury spent, anon
Did this break from her: Good Antigonus,
Since fute, against thy better disposition,
Hath made thy person for the thrower-out
Of my poor babe, according to thine oath,
Places remote enough are in Bohemia,
There weep, and leave it crying; and, for the babe
Is counted lost for ever, Perdita,

I pr'ythee, call't: for this ungentle business,
Put on thee by my Lord, thou ne'er shalt see
and so, with shrieks,
Affrighted much,

Thy wife Paulina more :
She melted into air.
I did in time collect myself; and thought
This was so, and no slumber. Dreams are toys'
Yet, for this once, yea, superstitiously,
I will be squar'd by this. I do believe,
Hermione hath suffer'd death; and that
Apollo would, this being indeed the issue
Of King Polixenes, I should here be laid,


That, for thy mother's fault, art thus expos'd
To loss, and what may follow! Weep I cannot,
But my heart bleeds: and most accurs'd am I,
To be by oath enjoin'd to this. Farewell!
The day frowns more and more- thou art like
to have

A lullaby toe rough: I never saw
The heavens so dim by day. A savage clamour?
Well may I get aboard! This is the chace;
I am gone for ever. [Exit, pursued by a Bear.
Enter an old Shepherd.

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Shep. I would, there were no age between ten and three-and-twenty; or that youth would sleep out the rest for there is nothing in the between but getting wenches with child, wronging the ancientry, stealing, fighting. - Hark you now! Would any but these boiled brains of nineteen, and two-and-twenty, hunt this weather? They have Go, get scared away two of my best sheep; which, I fear, the wolf will sooner find, than the master; if any where I have them, 'tis by the sea-side, browzing on ivy Good luck, an't be thy will! what have we here? [Taking up the Child.] Mercy on's, a barne; a very pretty barne! A boy, or a child, I wonder? A pretty one; a very pretty one: Sure, some scape: though I am not bookish, yet I can read waiting-gentlewoman in the scape. This has been some stair-work, some trunk-work, some behind-door-work: they were warmer that got this, than the poor thing is here. I'll take it up for pity: yet I'll tarry till my son come; he hollaed but even Whoa, họ hoa


Enter Clown.

Clo. Hilloa, loa!

Shep. What, art so near? If thou'lt see a thing to talk on when thou art dead and rotten, come hither. What ailest thou, man?

Clo. I have seen two such sights, by sea, and by land; but I am not to say, it is a sea, for it is now the sky; betwixt the firmament and it, you cannot thrust a bodkin's point.

Shep. Why, boy, how is it?

Clo. I would, you did but see how it chafes, how it rages, how it takes up the shore! but that's not to the point! O, the most piteous cry of the poor souls! sometimes to see 'em, and not to see 'em now the ship boring the moon with her mainmast; and anon swallowed with yest and froth, as you'd thrust a cork into a hogshead. And then for the land service,-To see how the bear tore out his shoulder-bone; how he cried to me for help, and said, his name was Antigonus, a nobleman :-But to make an end of the ship: -to see how the sea flap-dragoned it: -but, first, how the poor souls roared, and the sea mocked them; and how the poor gentleman roared, and the bear mocked him, both roaring louder than the sea, or weather.

Shep. Name of mercy, when was this, boy? Clo. Now, now; I have not winked since I saw these sights: the men are not yet cold under water,

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