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From his true-meant design. Upon his place,
Isab. Doth he so seek his life?
Has censur'df him
Isab. Alas! what poor ability's in me
Assay the power you have.
Our doubts are traitors,
Isab. I'll sec what I can do.
• Extent. * Sentenced.
+ Power of gaining favour.
Commeud me to my brother: soon at night
Lucio. I take my leave of you.
Good sir, adieu.
SCENE I. A hall in Angelo's house.
Enter Angelo, Escalus, a Justice, Provost, Officers,
Ang. We must not make a scare-crow of the law, Setting it up to fear* the birds of prey, And let it keep one shape, till custom make it Their perch, and not their terror. Escal.
Ay, but yet Let us be keen, and rather cut a little, Than fall, and bruise to death: alas! this gentleman, Whom I would save, had a niost noble father. Let but your honour knowt (Whom I believe to be most strait in virtue), That, in the working of your own affections, Had time coher'di 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 sword twelve, have a thief or two Guiltier than him they try: what's open made to
That justice seizes. What know the laws,
Escal. Be it as your wisdom will.
Where is the provost?
See that Claudio Be executed by nine to-morrow morning : Bring him his confessor, let him be prepar'd; For that's the utmost of his pilgrimage.
[Erit Provost. Escal. Well, heaven forgive him; and forgive us
Enter Elbow, Froth, Clown, Officers, &c. Elb. Come, bring them away: if these be good people in a common-wealy, 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?
Ell. If it please your honour, I am the poor duke's constable, and my name is Elbow; I do lean
* Pass judgement. + Plain, | Because. Sentence, || Thickest, thorny paths of vice. Wealth.
upon justice, 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. If it 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 Christiaus 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 elbuw.
Elb. IIe, sir? a tapster, sir; parcelt-bawd; one that serves a bad woman; whose house, sir, was, as they say, pluck'd down in the suburbs; and now she professest 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?
Elb. Ay, sir; whom, I thank heaven, is an honest woman,
Escal. Dost thou detest her therefore?
Elb. I say, sir, I will detest myself also, as well as she, that this house, if it be not a bawd's house, it is pity of her life, for it is a naughty house.
Escal. How dost tlou know that, constable?
Elb. Marry, sir, by my wife; who, if she had been a woman cardinally given, might bave been accused in fornication, adultery, and all uncleanliness there.
Escal. By the woman's means ?
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.
* Well told.
Elb. Prove it before these varlets here, thou ho. nourable man, prove it. 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 fruitdish, 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 belly'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, paying for them very honestly; -for, as you know, master Froth, I could not give you three-pence again,
Froth. No, indeed.
Clo. Very well : your 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.
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 hononr cannot come to that yet.
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;