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2 Gent. To what, I pray?
1 Gent. Thou art always figuring diseases in me: but thou art full of error: I am sound.
Lucio. Nay, not as one would say, healthy; but so sound, as things that are bollow: thy bones are hollow; impiety has made a feast of thee.
Enter Bawd. 1 Gent. How now? Which of your hips has the most profound sciatica?
Bawd. Well, well; there's one yonder arrested, and carried to prison, was worth five thousand of you all.
1 Gent. Who's that, I pray thee? Bawd. Marry, sir, that's Claudio, signior Claudio. 1 Gent. Claudio to prison ! 'tis not so.
Bawd. Nay, but I know, 'tis so: I saw him arrested; saw him carried away; and, which is more, within these three days his head's to be chopped off.
Lucio. But, after all this fooling, I would not have it so: art thou sure of this?
Bawd. I am too sure of it: and it is for getting madam Julietta with child.
Lucio. Believe me, this may be: he promised to meet me two hours since; and he was ever precise in promise-keeping
2 Gent. Besides, you know, it draws something near to the speech we had to such a purpose.
1 Gent. But most of all, agreeing with the proclamation. Lucio. Away; let's go learn the truth of it.
[Exeunt Lucio and Gentlemens. Bawd. Thus, what with the war, what with the sweat, what with the gallows, and what with poverty, I am custom-shrunk. How now? what's the news with you?
Bawd. Well; what has he done?
Clo. No; but there's a woman with maid by him; you have not heard of the proclamation, have you?
Bawd. What proclamation, man?
Clo. All houses in the suburbs of Vienna must be pluck'd down.
Bawd. And what shall become of those in the city?
Clo. They shall stand for seed: they had gone down too, but that a wise burgher put in for them.
Bawd. But shall all our houses of resort in the suburbs be pull’d down?
Clo. To the ground, mistress.
Bawd. Why, here's a change, indeed, in the commonwealth! What shall become of me?
Clo. Come; fear not you: good counsellors lack no clients : though you change your place, you need not change your trade; I'll be your tapster still
. Courage ; there will be pity taken on you: you that have worn your eyes almost out in the service, you will be considered.
Bawd. What's to do here, Thomas Tapster? let's withdraw.
Clo. Here comes signior Claudio, led by the provost to prison: and there's madam Juliet. [Exeunt.
SCENE 111. The same.
Lucio, and two Gentlemen.
Prov. I do it not in evil disposition,
Claud. Thus can the demi-god, Authority, Make us
down for our offence by weight. ---The words of heaven;-on whom it will, it will; On whom it will not, so; yet still 'tis just
Lucio. Why, how now, Claudio? whence comes this restraint?
Claud. From too much liberty, my Lucio, liberty:
Lució. If I could speak so wisely under an arrest, I would send for certain of my creditors: and yet, to say the truth, I had as lief have the foppery of freedom, as the morality of imprisonment.-What's thy offence, Claudio ?
Claud. What, but to speak of would offend again.
[Takes him aside.
Claud. Thus stands it with me :-Upon a true contract,
Claud. Unhappily, even so.
He can command, lets it straight feel the spur:
Lucio. I warrant it is: and thy head stands so tickle on thy shoulders, that a milk-maid, if she be in love, may sigh it off. Send after the duke, and appeal to him.
Člaud. I bave done so, but he's not to be found. I pr’ythee, Lucio, do me this kind service: This day my sister should the cloister enter, And there receive her approbation: Acquaint her with the danger of my state;. Implore her, in my voice, that she make friends To the strict deputy ; bid herself assay him; I have great hope in that: for in her youth There is a prone and speechless dialect, Such as moves men; beside, she hath prosperous art When she will play with reason and discourse.
Lucio. I pray she may: as well for the encouragement of the like, which else would stand under grievous imposition; as for the enjoying of thy life, who I would be sorry should be thus foolishly lost at a game of ticktack. I'll to her.
Claud. I thank you, good friend Lucio.
[Exeunt. SCENE IV. A Monastery.
Enter Duke and Friar THOMAS. Duke. No; holy father; throw away that thought; Believe not that the dribbling dart of love Can pierce a complete bosom: why I desire thee To give me secret harbour, hath a purpose More grave and wrinkled than the aims and ends
Of burning youth.
May your grace speak of it?
Fri. Gladly, my lord.
Duke. We have strict statutes, and most biting laws,
It rested in your grace
I do fear, too dreadful :
strike home, And yet my nature never in the sight,