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Oli. What, you wrestle to-morrow before the new duke?
Cha. Marry, do I, sir; and I came to acquaint you with a matter. I am given, sir, secretly to understand, that your younger brother, Orlando, hath a disposition to come in disguised against me to try a fall. To-morrow, sir, I wrestle for my credit; and he that escapes me without some broken limb shall acquit him well. Your brother is but young and tender; and, for your love, I would be loth to foil him, as I must, for my own honour, if he come in: therefore, out of my love to you, I came hither to acquaint you withal; that either you might stay him from his intendment, or brook such disgrace well as he shall run into; in that it is a thing of his own search,' and altogether against
Oli. Charles, I thank thee for thy love to me, which thou shalt find I will most kindly requite. I had myself notice
brother's purpose herein, and have by underhand means laboured to dissuade him from it; but he is resolute. I'll tell thee, Charles—it is the stubbornest young fellow of France; full of ambition, an envious emulator of every man's good parts, a secret and villanous contriver against me, his natural brother; therefore use thy discretion ; I had as lief? thou didst break his neck as his finger. And thou wert best look3 to 't; for if thou dost him any slight disgrace, or if he do not mightily grace himself on thee, he will practise against thee by poison, entrap thee by some treacherous device, and never leave thee till he hath ta'en thy life by some indirect means or other; for, I assure thee, and almost with tears I speak it, there is not one
I had as lief] I had is a form of the conditional past tense for I would have. Lief, a Saxon word, means freely or gladly.
3 Thou wert best look] A corruption of It were best for thee to look. Very common in Shakspeare.
so young and so villanous this day living. I speak but brotherly of him; but should I anaton ise him to thee as he is, I must blush and weep, and thou must look pale and wonder.
Cha. I am heartily glad I came hither to you. If he come to-morrow, I'll give him his payment. If ever he go alone again, I'll never wrestle for prize more. God keep your worship!
[Exit. Oli. Farewell, good Charles.--Now will I stir this gamester. I hope I shall see an end of him ;: for my soul, yet I know not why, hates nothing more than he. Yet he's gentle; never schooled, and yet learned; full of noble device; of all sorts enchantingly beloved ; and, indeed, so much in the heart of the world, and especially of my own people, who best know him, that I am altogether misprised : 2 but it shall not be so long; this wrestler shall clear all : nothing remains, but that I kindle3 the boy thither, which now I'll go about.
SCENE II.-A Lawn before the Duke's Palace.
Enter ROSALIND and CELIA.
Ros. Dear Celia, I show more mirth than I am mistress of; and would you yet I were merrier ? Unless you could teach me to forget a banished father, you must not learn me how to remember any extraordinary pleasure.
In the heart of] Beloved by.
Misprised] Undervalued ; contemned.-Fr. mépris. So again, p. 15, 'Your reputation shall not therefore be misprised.'
s Kindle] Quicken; incite. So, in Macbeth, i. 3, • That, trusted home, might yet enkindle you unto the crown.'
- Sweet my coz] Here the expression my coz is regarded as a noun, and qualified by the adjective sweet. Shakspeare abounds in this kind of construction. See p. 53, note 5,
Cel. Herein, I see, thou lovest me not with the full weight that I love thee:1 if my uncle, thy banished father, had banished thy uncle, the duke my father, so thou hadst been still with me, I could have taught my love to take thy father for mine ; so wouldst thou, if the truth of thy love to me were so righteously tempered as mine is to thee.
Ros. ell, I will forget the condition of my estate, to rejoice in yours.
Cel. You know my father hath no child but I, nor none is like to have; and, truly, when he dies, thou shalt be his heir; for what he hath taken away from thy father perforce, I will render thee again in affection; by mine honour, I will; and when I break that oath, let me turn monster : therefore, my sweet Rose, my dear Rose, be merry.
Ros. From henceforth I will, coz, and devise. sports. Let me see :-what think you of falling in love?
Cel. Marry, I prithee, do, to make sport withal: but love no man in good earnest; nor no further in sport neither, than with safety of a pure blush thou mayst in honour come off again.
Ros. What shall be our sport then?
Cel. Let us sit and mock the good housewife Fortune froin her wheel,2 that her gifts may henceforth be bestowed equally.
· That I love thee] That I love thee with. By Shakspeare a preposition is often thus neglected at the end of a clause. riseth from a feast with that keen appetite that he sits down.' Merch. of Venice, ii. 6. See the Editor's Othello, p. 23, note 4.
Mock the good housewife, &c.]. Housewife here means a strumpet; and 'Fortune's a strumpet' was a proverbial expression. Compare Antony and Cleopatra, iv. 13:
Let me rail so high,
Ros. I would we could do so; for her benefits are mightily misplaced; and the bountiful blind woman doth most mistake in her gifts to women.
Cel. 'T is true; for those that she makes fair, she scarce makes honest; and those that she makes honest, she makes very ill-favouredly.
Ros. Nay, now thou goest from Fortune's office to Nature's: Fortune reigns in gifts of the world, not in the lineaments of nature.
Cel. Vo? when Nature hath made a fair creature, may she not by Fortune fall into the fire ?—Though Nature hath given us wit to flout at Fortune, hath not Fortune sent in this fool to cut off the argument ?
Ros. Indeed, there is Fortune too hard for Nature; when Fortune makes Nature's natural ? the cutter off of Nature's wit.
Cel. Peradventure this is not Fortune's work neither, but Nature's; who perceiveth our natural wits too dull to reason of such goddesses, and hath sent this natural for our whetstone: for always the dulness of the fool is the whetstone of his wits.—How now, wit! whither wander you ? ?
Touch. Mistress, you must come away to your father. Cel. Were you made the messenger ?
Touch. No, by mine honour; but I was bid to come for you.
Ros. Where learned you that oath, fool ?
· Natural] Fool.
· Wit, whither wander you] So in Act iv. sc. 1, we have • Wit, whither wilt?:- The saying was used often in a proverbial way by old authors, and was probably, as Staunton supposes, the beginning of some old ballad.
Touch. Of a certain knight, that swore by his honour they were good pancakes, and swore by his honour the mustard was naught: now, I'll stand to it, the pancakes were naught, and the mustard was good; and yet was not the knight forsworn.
Cel. How prove you that, in the great heap of your knowledge ?
Ros. Ay, marry; now unmuzzle your wisdom.
Touch. Stand you both forth now: stroke your chins, and swear by your beards that I am a knave.
Cel. By our beards, if we had them, thou art.
Touch. By my knavery, if I had it, then I were: but if you swear by that that is not, you are not forsworn : no
was this knight, swearing by his honour, for he never had
any; or if he had, he had sworn it ever he saw those pancakes or that mustard.
Cel. Prithee, who is 't that thou meanest ?
Cel. My father's love is enough to honour him. Enough! speak no more of him; you 'll be whipped for taxation, one of these days.
Touch. The more pity, that fools may not speak wisely what wise men do foolishly.
Cel. By my troth, thou sayest true : for since the little wit that fools have was silenced, the little foolery that wise men have makes a great show. Here comes Monsieur Le Beau.
Ros. With his mouth full of news.
Cel. Which he will put on us, as pigeons feed their young.
Ros. Then shall we be news-crammed.
· Taxation] Accusation.