he is, as ever broke bread! but, Heaven is to be worshipped - All men are not alike, alas, good neighbour !

Leon. Indeed, neighbour, he comes too short of you.
Dogb. Gifts, that Heaven gives.
Leon. I must leave you.

[Crossing to R. Dogb. One word, sir: our watch, sir, have, indeed, comprehended two aspicious persons, and we would have them this morning examined before your worship.

Leon. Take their examination yourself, and bring it me; I am now in great haste, as it may appear unto you.

Dogb. It shall be suffigance.
Leon. Fare you well!

[Exit, R. Dogb. Go, good partner, go, get you to Francis Seacoal, bid him bring his pen and inkhorn to the gaol ; we are now to examination these men.

Verges. And we must do it wisely.

Dogb. We will spare for no wit, I warrant you: here's that [Touching his forehead] shall drive some of them to a non-com: only get the learned writer to set down our excommunication, and meet me at the gaol.

[Exeunt, L.



SCENE I.-A Chapel. Don Pedro, Don John, LEONATO, FRIAR, CLAUDIO,

Benedick, Hero, and BEATRICE, discovered. Leon. (c.) Come, Friar Francis, be brief; only to the plain form of marriage, and you shall recount their particular duties afterwards.

Friar. (R. C.) You come hither, my lord, to marry this lady?

Claud. (L. c.) No.

Leon. To be married to her, Friar; you come to marry her.

Friar. Lady, you come hither to be married to this Count?

Hero. (R. C.) I do. Friar. If either of you know any inward impediment, why you should not be conjoined, I charge you, on your souls, to utter it.

Claud. Know you any, Hero ?
Hero. None ' my lord.
Friar. Know you any,

Leon. I dare make his answer, none.

Claud. Oh, what men dare do! what men may do! what men daily do!

Bened. (L.) How now ? Interjections ?

Claud. Stand thee by, Friar: Father, by your leave; Will you, with free and unconstrained soul, Give me this maid, your daughter ?

Leon. As freely, son, as Heaven did give her me.

Claud. And what have I to give you back, whose worth May counterpoise this rich and precious gift?

Pedro. Nothing, unless you render her again.
Claud. Sweet Prince, you learn me noble thankful-

There, Leonato, take her back again :
She's but the sign and semblance of her honour:
Behold, how like a maid she blushes here !
Her blush is guiltiness, not modesty.

Leon. (L. c.) What do you mean, my lord ?

Claud. Not to be married,
Not knit my soul to an approved wanton-

Leon. Dear my Lord, if you, in your own proof,
Have vanquish'd the resistance of her youth-

Claud. No, Leonato,
I never tempted her with word too large;
But, as a brother to a sister, show'd
Bashful sincerity, and comely love.

Hero. And seem'd I ever otherwise to you?
Claud. Out on thy seeming! I will write against it;

(BENEDICK retires up the stage.
You seem to me, as Dian in her orb;
As chaste, as is the bud ere it be blown ;
But you are more intemperate in your blood
Than Venus, or those pamper'd animals,
That rage in savage sensuality.

Hero. Is my Lord well, that he doth speak so wide ?
Leon. Sweet Prince, why speak not you ?
Pedro. What should I speak ?


I stand dishonour'd, that have gone about
To link my dear friend to a wanton here,

Leon. Are these things spoken, or do I but dream?
John. Sir, they are spoken, and these things are

Hero. True, o Heaven !

Claud. Leonato, stand I here?
Is this the Prince? Is this the Prince's brother?
Is this face Hero's? Are our eyes our own ?

Leon. All this is so ; but what of this, my Lord :
Claud. Let me but move one question to your

And, by that fatherly and kindly power
That you have in her, hid her answer truly.

Leon. I charge thee do so as thou art my child !

Hero. O Heaven defend me! how I am beset! What kind of catechizing call you this ?

Claud. To make you answer truly to your name.

Hero. Is it not Hero? Who can blot that name
With any just reproach ?

Claud. Marry, that can Hero;
Hero itself can blot out Hero's virtue.
What man was he, talk'd with you yesternight,
Out at your window, betwixt twelve and one?
Now, if you are a maid, answer to this.

Hero. I talk'd with no man at that hour, my Lord.

Pedro. Leonato,
I am sorry, you must hear :--Upon mine honour,
Myself, my brother, and this grieved Count,
Did see her, hear her, at that hour last night,
Talk with a ruffian, at her chamber window;
Who hath, indeed, most like a liberal villain,
Confess'd the vile encounters they have had
A thousand times in secret.

John. Fie, fie, they ar
Not to be named, my Lord, not to be spoke of;
There is not chastity enough in language,
Without offence to utter them: Thus, pretty lady,
I am sorry for thy much misgovernment.

Claud. O Hero, what an angel had'st thou been,
If half thy outward graces had been placed
About the thoughts and counsels of thy heart!
But, fare thee well, most foul, most fair ! farewell !
For thee, I'll lock up all the gates of love,
And on my eye-lids shall conjecture hang,

To turn all beauty into thoughts of harm,
And never shall it inore be gracious.

[HERO swoons in the arms of Beatrice. [Exeunt Don PEDRO, Don John, and CLAUDIO, Leon. Hath no man's dagger here a point for me? Beatr. Why, how now, cousin ? wherefore sink you

down? Bened. [Advancing to Hero and Beatrice.] How

doth the lady ? Beatr. Dead, I think ;-Help, uncle ! Hero ! why, Hero! uncle! Siguior Benedick! Friar !

Leon. O fate, take not away thy heavy hand !
Death is the fairest cover for her shame,
That may be wish'd for.

Beatr. How now, cousin Hero?
Friar. [Advancing to c.] Have comfort, lady.
Leon. Dost thou look up ?
Friar. Yea; Wherefore should she not?
Leon. (L.) Wherefore? Why, doth not every earthly

Cry shame upon her ? Could she here deny
The story, that is printed in her blood !
Do not live, Hero: do not ope thine eyes ;
For did I think, thou wouldst not quickly die,
Thought I, thy spirits were stronger than thy shames,
Myself would, on the rearward of reproaches,
Strike at thy life. Grieved I, I had but one ?
Chid I for that, at frugal nature's frame ?
I've one too much by thee! O, she is fallin
Into a pit of ink! that the wide sea
Hath drops too few, to wash her clean again!

Bened. (L. c.) Sir, sir, be patient !
For my part, I am so attired in wonder,
I know not what to say.

Beatr. O, on my soul, my cousin is belied !
Bcned. Lady, were you her bedfellow last night?

Beatr. No, truly not ;' although, until last night,
I have this twelvemonth been her bedfellow.
Leon. Confirm’d, confirm'd! Oh, that is stronger

made, Which was before barr'd up with ribs of iron? Would the two Princes lie? and Claudio lie ? Who loved her so, that, speaking of her foulness, Wash'd it with tears? Hence! from her ! let her die!

Friar. (c.) Hear me a little ; For I have only silent been so long,

And given way unto this course of fortune,
By noting of the lady; I have mark'd
A thousand blushing apparitions start
Into lier face; a thousand innocent shames
In angel whiteness, bear away those blushes.
Call me a fool;
Trust not my reading, nor my observation,
If this sweet lady lie not guiltless here,
Under some biting error.

Leon. Friar, it cannot be :
Thou seest, that all the grace that she hath left,
Is, that she will not add to her damnation,
A sin of perjury: she not denies it :
Why seek'st thou, then, to cover with excuse
That, which appears in proper nakedness?

Friar. Lady, what man is he, you are accused of?
* Hero. They know, that do accuse me: I know none:
If I know more of any man alive,
Than that, which maiden modesty doth warrant,
Let all my sins lack mercy! [Crosses to L. and kneels.]

O my father, Prove you that any man with me conversed At hours unmeet, or that I yesternight Maintain'd the change of words with any creature, Refuse me, hate me, torture me to death. Friar. (L. c.) There is some strange misprision in

the Princes. Bened. (L.) Two of them have the very bent of họ

And if their wisdoms be misled in this,
The practice of it lives in John, the bastard,
Whose spirits toil in frames of villainies.

Leon. I know not; if they speak but truth of her, These hands shall tear her ; if they wrong her honour, The proudest of them shall well hear of it.

Friar. Pause awhile,
And let my counsel sway you in this case.
Claudio has left your daughter here for dead;
Let her awhile be secretly kept in,
And publish it, that she is dead indeed.

Leon. What shall become of this? what will this do?

Friar. She dying, as it must be so maintain'd,
Upon the instant that she was accused,
Shall be lamented, pity'd, and excused,
Of every hearer : So will it fare with Claudio :
When he shall hear, she died upon his words,

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