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Ber. My Lord, this is a fond and defprate creature, Whom sometime I have laugh'd with: let your

Highness Lay a more noble thought upon mine honour, Than for to think that I would fink it here. King. Sir for my thoughts, you have them ill to

friend, 'Till your deeds gain them: fairer prove your honour, Than in my thought it lies!

Dia. Good my lord,
Ask him upon his oath, if he does think
He had not my virginity.

King. What fay'lt thou to her?

Ber. She's impudent, my Lord,
And was a common gamester to the camp..

Dia. He does me wrong, my Lord; if I were fo,
He might have bought me at a common price.
Do not believe him. O, behold this ring,
Whose high respect and rich validity
Did lack a parallel : yet for all that,
He gave it to a commoner o'th' camp,
If I be one.

Count. He blushes, and 'ris his :
Of fix preceding ancestors, that gemm
Conferr'd by Testament to th' sequent issue,
Hath it been ow'd and worn. This is his wife,
That ring's a thousand proofs.

King. Methought, you said,
You saw one here in Court could witness ir.

Dia. I did, my Lord, but loth am to produce
So bad an instrument; his name's Parolles.

Laf. I saw the man to day, if man he be.
King. Find him, and bring him hither.

Ber. What of him?
He's quored for a most perfidious Nave,
With all the spots o'th' world tax'd and debosh’d,
Which nature fickens with: but to speak truth,

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Am I or that or this, for whai he'll utter,
That will speak any thing?

KingShe hath that ring of yours.

Ber. I think, she has ; certain it is, I lik'd her,
And boarded her i'th' wanton way of youth:
She knew her distance, and did angle for me,
Madding my eagerness with her restraint ;
As all impediments in fancy's course
Are motives of more fancy: and in fine,
Her infuit coming with her modern grace,
Subdu'd me to her rate : she got the ring;
And I had That, which any inferior might
At market-price have bought.

Dia. I must be patient :
You, that turn'd off a first so noble wife,
May juftly 'diet me.

diet me. I pray you yet,
(Since you lack virtue, I will lose a husband,)

, Send for your ring, I will return it home, And give me mine again.

Ber. I have it not.
King. What ring was yours, I pray you

?
Din. Sir, much like the same upon your finger.
King. Know you this ring? this ring was his of late.
Dia. And this was it I gave him, being a-bed.

King. The story then goes false, you threw it him Out of a casement.

Dia. I have spoke the truth.

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Enter Parolles.
Ber. My Lord, I do confess, the ring was hers.
King. You boggle shrewdly, every feather starts

you!

1 - diet me.-) i.e. use me harshly. A phrase taken from the severe methods taken in curing the venercal disorder.

Is this the man you speak of?

Dia. It is, my Lord.
King. Tell me, Sirrah, but tell me true, I charge

you,
Not fearing the displeasure of your master,
Which on your just proceeding I'll keep off;
By him and by this woman here, what know you?

Par. So please your Majesty, my master hath been an honourable Gentleman. Tricks he hath had in him, which Gentlemen have.

King. Come, come, to the purpose ; did he love this Woman?

Par. 'Faith, Sir, he did love her ; but how?
King. How, I pray you?

Par. He did love her, Sir, as a Gentleman loves a Woman.

King, How is that?
Par. He lov'd her, Sir, and lov'd her not,

King. As thou art a knave, and no knave; what an equivocal companion is this?

Par. I am a poor man, and at your Majesty's Command.

Laf. He's a good drum, my Lord, but a naughty Orator.

Dia. Do you know, he promis'd me marriage?
Par. 'Faith, I know more than I'll speak.
King. But wilt thou not speak all thou know'it?
Par. Yes, so please your Majesty. I did go

between them, as I said; but more than that, he lov'd her: for, indeed, he was mad for her, and talk'd of Satan, and of limbo, and of furies, and I know not what; yet I was in that credit with them at that time, that I knew of their going to bed, and of other motions, as promising her marriage, and things that would derive me ill will to speak of; therefore I will not speak what I know,

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King. Thou hast spoken all already, unless thou can't Say they are married; but thou art too fine in thy evidence; therefore stand aside. This ring, you say, was yours?

Dia. Ay, my good Lord.
King. Where did you buy it? or who gave it

you?
Dia. It was not given me, nor did I buy it.
King. Who lent it you ?
Dia. It was not lent me neither.
King. Where did you find it then?
Dia. I found it not.
King. If it were yours by none of all these ways,
How could you give it him?

Dia. I never gave it him.

Laf. This woman's an easie glove, my Lord, The goes off and on at pleasure.

King. This ring was mine, I gave it his first wife.
Dia. It might be yours, or hers, for aught I

know.
King. Take her away, I do not like her now;
To prison with her: and away with him.
Unless thou tell’ft me where thou hadit this ring,
Thou dieft within this hour.

Dia. I'll never tell you.
King. Take her away.
Dia. I'll put in bail, my Liege.
King. I think chee now some common customer.
Dia. By Jove, if ever I knew man, 'ewas you.
King. Wherefore haft thou accus'd him all this

while?
Dia. Because he's guilty, and he is not guilty ;
He knows, I am no maid, and he'll swear to't;
I'll swear, I am a maid, and he knows not.
Great King, I am no strumpet, by my life;
I'm either maid, or else this old man's wife.

[Pointing to Lafeu.

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King. She does abuse our ears; to prison with her.
Dia. Good mother, fetch my bail. Stay, royal Sir.

[Exit Widow,
The jeweller, that owes the ring, is sent tor,
And he shall surety me.

But for this Lord,

[To Bertram.
Who hath abus'd me, as he knows himself,
Tho' yet he never harm'd me, here I quit him.
He knows himself, my bed he hach defild,
And at that time he got his wife with child ;
Dead tho' fhe be, she feels her young one' kick:
So there's my riddle; one, that's dead, is quick,
And now behold the meaning.

Enter Helena, and Widow.
King. Is there no Exorcist
Beguiles the truer office of mine eyes?
Is't real, that I fee?

Hel. No, my good Lord,
'Tis but a shadow of a wife you see,
The name, and not the thing.

Ber. Both, both; oh, pardon!
Hel. Oh, my good Lord, when I was like this

maid,
I found you wond'rous kind; there is your ring,
And look you, here's your letter: this it says,
Wben from my finger you can get this ring,
And are by me with child, &c. This is done.
Will you be mine, now you are doubly won?
Ber. If she, my Liege, can make me know this

clearly,
I'll love her dearly, ever, ever dearly.

Hel. If it appear not plain, and prove untrue,
Deadly divorce step between me and you !
O my dear mother, do I see you living ?

To the Countess.

2

Laf.

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