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All’s Well That Ends Well: Act I, Scene 3

All’s Well That Ends Well
Act I, Scene 3

Roussillon . A room in the Count’s palace .

  1. Enter Countess , Steward Rinaldo , and Clown Lavatch .

Countess

1
  1. I will now hear . What say you of this gentlewoman ?

Rinaldo

2 - 5
  1. Madam , the care I have had to even your content , I wish
  2. might be found in the calendar of my past endeavors , for
  3. then we wound our modesty , and make foul the clearness of
  4. our deservings , when of ourselves we publish them .

Countess

6 - 10
  1. What does this knave here ? Get you gone , sirrah . The
  2. complaints I have heard of you I do not all believe . ’Tis my
  3. slowness that I do not , for I know you lack not folly to
  4. commit them , and have ability enough to make such knaveries
  5. yours .

Lavatch

11
  1. ’Tis not unknown to you , madam , I am a poor fellow .

Countess

12
  1. Well , sir .

Lavatch

13 - 16
  1. No , madam , ’tis not so well that I am poor , though many of
  2. the rich are damn’d , but if I may have your ladyship’s good
  3. will to go to the world , Isbel the woman and I will do as we
  4. may .

Countess

17
  1. Wilt thou needs be a beggar ?

Lavatch

18
  1. I do beg your good will in this case .

Countess

19
  1. In what case ?

Lavatch

20 - 22
  1. In Isbel’s case and mine own . Service is no heritage , and I
  2. think I shall never have the blessing of God till I have
  3. issue a’ my body ; for they say barnes are blessings .

Countess

23
  1. Tell me thy reason why thou wilt marry .

Lavatch

24 - 25
  1. My poor body , madam , requires it . I am driven on by the
  2. flesh , and he must needs go that the devil drives .

Countess

26
  1. Is this all your worship’s reason ?

Lavatch

27
  1. Faith , madam , I have other holy reasons , such as they are .

Countess

28
  1. May the world know them ?

Lavatch

29 - 30
  1. I have been , madam , a wicked creature , as you and all flesh
  2. and blood are , and indeed I do marry that I may repent .

Countess

31
  1. Thy marriage , sooner than thy wickedness .

Lavatch

32 - 33
  1. I am out a’ friends , madam , and I hope to have friends for
  2. my wive’s sake .

Countess

34
  1. Such friends are thine enemies , knave .

Lavatch

35 - 46
  1. Y’ are shallow , madam in great friends , for the knaves come
  2. to do that for me which I am a - weary of . He that ears my
  3. land spares my team , and gives me leave to inn the crop . If
  4. I be his cuckold , he’s my drudge . He that comforts my wife
  5. is the cherisher of my flesh and blood ; he that cherishes my
  6. flesh and blood loves my flesh and blood ; he that loves my
  7. flesh and blood is my friend : ergo , he that kisses my wife
  8. is my friend . If men could be contented to be what they are ,
  9. there were no fear in marriage , for young Charbon the
  10. puritan and old Poysam the papist , howsome’er their hearts
  11. are sever’d in religion , their heads are both one : they may
  12. jowl horns together like any deer i’ th’ herd .

Countess

47
  1. Wilt thou ever be a foul - mouth’d and calumnious knave ?

Lavatch

48 - 52
  1. A prophet I , madam , and I speak the truth the next way :
  2. For I the ballad will repeat ,
  3. Which men full true shall find :
  4. Your marriage comes by destiny ,
  5. Your cuckoo sings by kind .

Countess

53
  1. Get you gone , sir , I’ll talk with you more anon .

Rinaldo

54 - 55
  1. May it please you , madam , that he bid Helen come to you . Of
  2. her I am to speak .

Countess

56 - 57
  1. Sirrah , tell my gentlewoman I would speak with her Helen , I
  2. mean .

Lavatch

58 - 67
  1. Sings .
  2. Was this fair face the cause ,” quoth she ,
  3. Why the Grecians sacked Troy ?
  4. Fond done , done fond ,
  5. Was this King Priam’s joy ?”
  6. With that she sighed as she stood ,
  7. With that she sighed as she stood ,
  8. And gave this sentence then :
  9. Among nine bad if one be good ,
  10. Among nine bad if one be good ,
  11. There’s yet one good in ten .”

Countess

68
  1. What , one good in ten ? You corrupt the song , sirrah .

Lavatch

69 - 74
  1. One good woman in ten , madam , which is a purifying a’ th’
  2. song . Would God would serve the world so all the year ! We’d
  3. find no fault with the tithe - woman if I were the parson . One
  4. in ten , quoth ’a ? And we might have a good woman born but or
  5. every blazing star or at an earthquake , ’twould mend the
  6. lottery well ; a man may draw his heart out ere ’a pluck one .

Countess

75
  1. You’ll be gone , sir knave , and do as I command you .

Lavatch

76 - 80
  1. That man should be at woman’s command , and yet no hurt done !
  2. Though honesty be no puritan , yet it will do no hurt ; it
  3. will wear the surplice of humility over the black gown of a
  4. big heart . I am going , forsooth . The business is for Helen
  5. to come hither .
  1. Exit .

Countess

81
  1. Well , now .

Rinaldo

82
  1. I know , madam , you love your gentlewoman entirely .

Countess

83 - 86
  1. Faith , I do . Her father bequeath’d her to me , and she
  2. herself , without other advantage , may lawfully make title to
  3. as much love as she finds . There is more owing her than is
  4. paid , and more shall be paid her than she’ll demand .

Rinaldo

87 - 99
  1. Madam , I was very late more near her than I think she wish’d
  2. me . Alone she was , and did communicate to herself her own
  3. words to her own ears ; she thought , I dare vow for her , they
  4. touch’d not any stranger sense . Her matter was , she lov’d
  5. your son . Fortune , she said , was no goddess , that had put
  6. such difference betwixt their two estates ; Love no god , that
  7. would not extend his might only where qualities were level ;
  8. Diana no queen of virgins , that would suffer her poor knight
  9. surpris’d without rescue in the first assault or ransom
  10. afterward . This she deliver’d in the most bitter touch of
  11. sorrow that e’er I heard virgin exclaim in , which I held my
  12. duty speedily to acquaint you withal , sithence in the loss
  13. that may happen , it concerns you something to know it .

Countess

100 - 114
  1. You have discharg’d this honestly , keep it to yourself . Many
  2. likelihoods inform’d me of this before , which hung so
  3. tott’ring in the balance that I could neither believe nor
  4. misdoubt . Pray you leave me . Stall this in your bosom , and I
  5. thank you for your honest care . I will speak with you
  6. further anon .
  7. Exit Steward .
  8. Enter Helen .
  9. Even so it was with me when I was young .
  10. If ever we are nature’s , these are ours . This thorn
  11. Doth to our rose of youth rightly belong ;
  12. Our blood to us , this to our blood is born .
  13. It is the show and seal of nature’s truth ,
  14. Where love’s strong passion is impress’d in youth .
  15. By our remembrances of days foregone ,
  16. Such were our faults , or then we thought them none .
  17. Her eye is sick on’t ; I observe her now .

Helena

115
  1. What is your pleasure , madam ?

Countess

116 - 117
  1.                               You know , Helen ,
  2. I am a mother to you .

Helena

118
  1. Mine honorable mistress .

Countess

119 - 133
  1.                          Nay , a mother ,
  2. Why not a mother ? When I said a mother ,”
  3. Methought you saw a serpent . What’s in mother ,”
  4. That you start at it ? I say I am your mother ,
  5. And put you in the catalogue of those
  6. That were enwombed mine . ’Tis often seen
  7. Adoption strives with nature , and choice breeds
  8. A native slip to us from foreign seeds .
  9. You ne’er oppress’d me with a mother’s groan ,
  10. Yet I express to you a mother’s care .
  11. God’s mercy , maiden ! Does it curd thy blood
  12. To say I am thy mother ? What’s the matter ,
  13. That this distempered messenger of wet ,
  14. The many - color’d Iris , rounds thine eye ?
  15. Why , that you are my daughter ?

Helena

134
  1.                                 That I am not .

Countess

135
  1. I say I am your mother .

Helena

136 - 142
  1.                         Pardon , madam ;
  2. The Count Roussillon cannot be my brother :
  3. I am from humble , he from honored name ;
  4. No note upon my parents , his all noble .
  5. My master , my dear lord he is , and I
  6. His servant live , and will his vassal die .
  7. He must not be my brother .

Countess

143
  1.                            Nor I your mother ?

Helena

144 - 149
  1. You are my mother , madam ; would you were
  2. So that my lord your son were not my brother
  3. Indeed my mother ! Or were you both our mothers ,
  4. I care no more for than I do for heaven ,
  5. So I were not his sister . Can’t no other ,
  6. But , I your daughter , he must be my brother ?

Countess

150 - 168
  1. Yes , Helen , you might be my daughter - in - law .
  2. God shield you mean it not ! daughter and mother
  3. So strive upon your pulse . What , pale again ?
  4. My fear hath catch’d your fondness ! Now I see
  5. The myst’ry of your loneliness , and find
  6. Your salt tears’ head , now to all sense ’tis gross :
  7. You love my son . Invention is asham’d ,
  8. Against the proclamation of thy passion ,
  9. To say thou dost not : therefore tell me true ,
  10. But tell me then ’tis so ; for look , thy cheeks
  11. Confess it , t’ one to th’ other , and thine eyes
  12. See it so grossly shown in thy behaviors
  13. That in their kind they speak it . Only sin
  14. And hellish obstinacy tie thy tongue ,
  15. That truth should be suspected . Speak , is’t so ?
  16. If it be so , you have wound a goodly clew ;
  17. If it be not , forswear’t ; howe’er , I charge thee ,
  18. As heaven shall work in me for thine avail ,
  19. To tell me truly .

Helena

169
  1.                   Good madam , pardon me !

Countess

170
  1. Do you love my son ?

Helena

171
  1.                     Your pardon , noble mistress !

Countess

172
  1. Love you my son ?

Helena

173
  1.                  Do not you love him , madam ?

Countess

174 - 177
  1. Go not about ; my love hath in’t a bond
  2. Whereof the world takes note . Come , come , disclose
  3. The state of your affection , for your passions
  4. Have to the full appeach’d .

Helena

178 - 204
  1.                             Then I confess
  2. Here on my knee , before high heaven and you ,
  3. That before you , and next unto high heaven ,
  4. I love your son .
  5. My friends were poor , but honest , so’s my love .
  6. Be not offended , for it hurts not him
  7. That he is lov’d of me ; I follow him not
  8. By any token of presumptuous suit ,
  9. Nor would I have him till I do deserve him ,
  10. Yet never know how that desert should be .
  11. I know I love in vain , strive against hope ;
  12. Yet in this captious and intenible sieve
  13. I still pour in the waters of my love
  14. And lack not to lose still . Thus Indian - like ,
  15. Religious in mine error , I adore
  16. The sun , that looks upon his worshipper ,
  17. But knows of him no more . My dearest madam ,
  18. Let not your hate encounter with my love
  19. For loving where you do ; but if yourself ,
  20. Whose aged honor cites a virtuous youth ,
  21. Did ever in so true a flame of liking
  22. Wish chastely , and love dearly , that your Dian
  23. Was both herself and Love , O then give pity
  24. To her whose state is such that cannot choose
  25. But lend and give where she is sure to lose ;
  26. That seeks not to find that her search implies ,
  27. But riddle - like lives sweetly where she dies .

Countess

205 - 206
  1. Had you not lately an intent speak truly
  2. To go to Paris ?

Helena

207
  1.                 Madam , I had .

Countess

208
  1.               Wherefore ? Tell true .

Helena

209 - 219
  1. I will tell truth , by grace itself I swear .
  2. You know my father left me some prescriptions
  3. Of rare and prov’d effects , such as his reading
  4. And manifest experience had collected
  5. For general sovereignty ; and that he will’d me
  6. In heedfull’st reservation to bestow them ,
  7. As notes whose faculties inclusive were
  8. More than they were in note . Amongst the rest ,
  9. There is a remedy , approv’d , set down ,
  10. To cure the desperate languishings whereof
  11. The King is render’d lost .

Countess

220 - 221
  1.                            This was your motive
  2. For Paris , was it ? Speak .

Helena

222 - 225
  1. My lord your son made me to think of this ;
  2. Else Paris , and the medicine , and the King ,
  3. Had from the conversation of my thoughts
  4. Happily been absent then .

Countess

226 - 233
  1.                           But think you , Helen ,
  2. If you should tender your supposed aid ,
  3. He would receive it ? He and his physicians
  4. Are of a mind ; he , that they cannot help him ,
  5. They , that they cannot help . How shall they credit
  6. A poor unlearned virgin , when the schools ,
  7. Embowell’d of their doctrine , have left off
  8. The danger to itself ?

Helena

234 - 241
  1.                       There’s something in’t
  2. More than my father’s skill , which was the great’st
  3. Of his profession , that his good receipt
  4. Shall for my legacy be sanctified
  5. By th’ luckiest stars in heaven , and would your honor
  6. But give me leave to try success , I’d venture
  7. The well - lost life of mine on his Grace’s cure
  8. By such a day , an hour .

Countess

242
  1.                         Dost thou believe’t ?

Helena

243
  1. Ay , madam , knowingly .

Countess

244 - 249
  1. Why , Helen , thou shalt have my leave and love ,
  2. Means and attendants , and my loving greetings
  3. To those of mine in court . I’ll stay at home
  4. And pray God’s blessing into thy attempt .
  5. Be gone tomorrow , and be sure of this ,
  6. What I can help thee to thou shalt not miss .
  1. Exeunt .
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