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What joy is joy, if Silvia be not by?
Enter PROTEUS and LAUNCE.
Launce. Him we go to find : there's not a hair on 's head, but 't is a Valentine.
Pro. Valentine ?
word. Val. My ears are stopp'd, and cannot hear good
news, So much of bad already hath possess'd them.
Pro. Then in dumb silence will I bury mine,
Val. Is Silvia dead ?
Val. No Valentine, indeed, for sacred Silvia !
Pro. No. Valentine.
Val. No Valentine, if Silvia have forsworn me! What is your news?
Launce. Sir, there is a proclamation that you are
vanish'd. Pro. That thou art banish'd : 0! that is the news, From hence, from Silvia, and from me, thy friend.
Val. O! Í have fed upon this woe already, And now excess of it will make me surfeit. Doth Silvia know that I am banished ?
Pro. Ay, ay; and she hath offer'd to the doom,
Pro. Cease to lament for that thou canst not help,
Val. I pray thee, Launce, an if thou seest my boy,
Bid him make haste, and meet me at the north-gate.
Pro. Go, sirrah, find him out. Come, Valentine. Val. O my dear Silvia ! hapless Valentine!
(Exeunt VALENTINE and PROTEUS. Launce. I am but a fool, look you, and yet I have the wit to think, my master is a kind of a knave; but that's all one, if he be but one knave. He lives not now, that knows me to be in love: yet I am in love; but a team of horse shall not pluck that from me, nor who 't is I love; and yet it is a woman : but what woman, I will not tell myself; and yet 't is a milkmaid ; yet 't is not a maid, for she hath had gossips : yet 't is a maid, for she is her master's maid, and serves for wages. She hath more qualities than a waterspaniel, which is much in a bare Christian. Here is the cat-log (pulling out a paper] of her conditions. Imprimis, “She can fetch and carry." Why, a horse can do no more: nay, a horse cannot fetch, but only carry; therefore, is she better than a jade. Item, “She ean milk;" look you, a sweet virtue in a maid with clean hands.
Enter SPEED. Speed. How now, signior Launce ? what news with your mastership?
Launce. With my master's ship? why, it is at sea.
Speed. Well, your old vice still ; mistake the word. What news, then, in your paper ?
Launce. The blackest news that ever thou heard'st.
read. Speed. Thou liest, I can. Launce. I will try thee. Tell me this: who begot
Launce. O, illiterate loiterer ! it was the son of thy grandmother. This proves that thou canst not read.
Speed. Come, fool, come : try me in thy paper.
Launce. And thereof comes the proverb, -Blessing of your heart, you brew good ale.
Speed. Item, “She can sew."
Launce. What need a man care for a stock with a wench, when she can knit him a stock?
Speed. Item, "She can wash and scour.”'
Launce. A special virtue; for then she need not be wash'd and scour'd.
Speed. Item, “She can spin.”
Launce. Then may I set the world on wheels, when she can spin for her living. .
Speed. Item, "She hath many nameless virtues."
Launce. That's as much as to say, bastard virtues ; that, indeed, know not their fathers, and therefore have no names.
Speed. Here follow her vices.
Speed. Item, "She is not to be kissed fasting, in respect of her breath."
Launce. Well, that fault may be mended with a breakfast. Read on.
Speed. Item, "She hath a sweet moi th."
Launce. It's no matter for that, so she slip not in her talk.
Speed. Item, " She is slow in words."
Launce. O villain ! that set this down among her vices ? To be slow in words is a woman's only virtue: I pray thee, out with 't, and place it for her chief virtue.
Speed. Item, “She is proud."
Launce. Out with that too: it was Eve's legacy, and cannot be ta’en from her.
Speed. Item, “She hath no teeth.”
Launce. I care not for that neither, because I love crusts.
Speed. Item, "She is curst."
Launce. If her liquor be good, she shall : if she will not, I will; for good things should be praised.
Speed. Item, “She is too liberal."
Launce. Of her tongue she cannot, for that 's writ down she is slow of: of her purse she shall not, for that I'll keep shut: now, of another thing she may, and that cannot I help. Well, proceed.
Speed. Item, "She hath more hair than wit, and more faults than hairs, and more wealth than faults."
Launce. Stop there; I 'll have her: she was mine, and not mine, twice or thrice in that last article. Rehearse that once more.
Speed. Item, “She hath more hair than wit,"
Launce. More hair than wit,-it may be ; I'll prove it: the cover of the salt hides the salt, and therefore it is more than the salt: the hair, that covers the wit, is more than the wit, for the greater hides the less. What's next?
Speed. -" And more faults than hairs,' —
Launce. Why, that word makes the faults gracious. Well, I'll have her; and if it be a match, as nothing is impossible,
Speed. What then ?
Launce. Why, then will I tell thee, that thy master stays for thee at the north-gate.
Speed. For me?
Launce. For thee? ay; who art thou ? he hath stay'd for a better man than thee.
Speed. And must I go to him ?
Launce. Thou must run to him, for thou hast stay'd so long, that going will scarce serve the turn.
Speed. Why didst not tell me sooner ? pox of your love-letters!
[Exit, running.' Launce. Now will he be swing'd for reading my letter. An unmannerly slave, that will thrust himself into secrets.—I'll after, to rejoice in the boy's correction.
Exit. SCENE II.-The Same. An Apartment in the
Enter Duke and Thurio. Duke. Sir Thurio, fear not but that she will love you, Now Valentine is banish'd from her sight.
I running : not in f. e.