Page:Shakespeare - First Folio Faithfully Reproduced, Methuen, 1910.djvu/111

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The Comedie of Errors,

ftAUui primus^ Scena prims.

Enttrthe Duke of Ephcfu , with the Merchant fifSiracufa, /ajler,aatiether attendaHls,

Merchant.
Rocf cd SolitiM to procure my fall.
And by the doome of death end woes and all.
Duke. Merchant ofStracHfa.pUid no more.
I am not pattiall to infringe our Lawcs ;
The enmity and difcord which of late
Sprung from the rancorous outrage of your Duke,
To Merchants our wcll-dcahng Countrimen ,
Who wanting gilders to rcdeeme their liues,
Haue feal'd his rigorous ftatutes with theit bloudf ,
Excludes all pitcy from our threatning lookes:
For (ince the mortall and inte^ineiarres
Tvvixt thy feditious Countrimen and vs ,
It hath in folemne Synodes bcenc decreed ,
Both by the SirttcufiAtis and our felues,
To admit no trailicke to our aduerfe townes :
Nay more, if any borne at Ephtfus
Be feene at any Sirae»fa» Marts and Fayrcs :
Againe, if any Stracujian borne
Come to the Bay ofEphefui^ he dies :
Hit goods confifcate to the Dukes difpofe,
Vnleflca thoufandmarkcs be Icuicd
To quit the penalty, and to ranfomc him :
Thy fubftaiicc, valued at the highcft rate,
Cannot amount vnto a hundred Markcs,
Therefore by Law thou art condemn'd to die.
'Mer. Yet this my comfort, when your words arc done.
My woes end likcwife with the euening Sonne,
Dukj Well Siracftfian ; fay in briefc the caufc
Why thou departcdft from thy natiue home ?
And for what caufe thou cam'ft to fphefis.
THer. A heauier taske could not haue bcenc impos'd.
Then I to fpeake my griefes vnfptakeablc :
Yet that the world may witneflc that my end
Was wrought by nature, not by vile offence,
He vtter what my forrow giucs mc leaue.
In SyracHpi was I borne, and weddc
Vnto a woman ,happy but for me,
And by mc ; had not our hap becne bad :
With her I liu'd in ioy, our wealth incrcaft
By profperoiK voyages I often made
To EtioMmtum, till my faftors deith.
And he great care of goods at randonc left,
Drew mcfrom kindc embraccments of my fpoufc;
From whom my abfence was not fixemoncthsoldc,
Before her felfe (almoft at fainting tadec
The plcafing punifhment that women bearc )
Had made prguifion for her following roe.
And foone, and fafc,atriued where 1 was :
There had (he not bcenc loog,but (he becaiM
A loyfoll mother ot"two goodly fonnes :
And, which was ftrangc.the one fo like the other.
At could not be dininguifh'd but by names.
! hat very howre,and in the lelfc-famc Inuc,
A meane woman wasdeliuered
Of fuch a burthen Male, cwins both alike ;
Thofe.for their parents were exceeding poore.
! bought,and brought vp to attend my ionnes.
My wife,not meanely prowd of two fuch boyes.
Made daily motions for our home returne:
Vnwilling I agreed, alas, too foone wcc came aboord.
A league from EpuLmiMm had wc faild
Before the alwaies winde>obeying dccpe
Gaue any Tragickc Inftance of our harmc :
But longer did we not retaine much hope ;
For what obfcurcdlight the hcaucns did grant.
Did but conuay vnto our fcarcfuU mindct
A doubtfull warrant of ioimediate death ,
Which though my fclfc would gladly haue Imbrac'd,
Yet the inceiTani weepings of my wife;
Weeping before for what Che faw muft come.
And pittcous playnings of the prettic babes
That mourn'd for faihion,ignorant what to fearc,
Forft me to fceke delaycs for them and mc,
And this it was: (for other mcanes was none)
The Sailors fought for fafety by our boate.
And left the Ihip then (inking ripe to »«.
My wife, morecarefuU for the latter borne,
Had fanned him vnto a fmall fpare MaO,
Such as fea-faring men prouide for ftormrs :
To him one of the other twins was bound,
Whil'ft I had baene like heedfuU of the other.
The children thus difpos'd, my wife and I,
Fixing our eyes on whom our care was 6xt ,
Faftncd our fclues at ey ther end the maft.
And floating nraight, obedient to the Greame,
Was carried cowards Cormto, as we thought.
At length the fonnc gazing vpon the earth ,
Difperll thofe vapours that offended vs.
And by the benefit of his wished light
The fcas waxt calme, and we difcouered
Two (hippes from farre, making amairtcto vs :
Of CoriMMihat, otEfidtrm thii ,
But ere th^ came, on let mc fay no more.
Gather the fcquell by that went before.
Diikj Nay forward old man,doc not brcale olf fo,