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Measure for Measure: Act 1, Scene 2

Measure for Measure
Act 1, Scene 2

Vienna. A street.

  1. Enter Lucio and two other Gentlemen.

Lucio

2 - 4
  1. If the Duke with the other dukes come not to composition
  2. with the King of Hungary, why then all the dukes fall upon
  3. the King.

First Gentleman

5
  1. Heaven grant us its peace, but not the King of Hungary’s!

Second Gentleman

6
  1. Amen.

Lucio

7 - 9
  1. Thou conclud’st like the sanctimonious pirate, that went to
  2. sea with the Ten Commandments, but scrap’d one out of the
  3. table.

Second Gentleman

10
  1. Thou shalt not steal”?

Lucio

11
  1. Ay, that he raz’d.

First Gentleman

12 - 15
  1. Why, ’twas a commandment to command the captain and all the
  2. rest from their functions; they put forth to steal. There’s
  3. not a soldier of us all, that in the thanksgiving before
  4. meat, do relish the petition well that prays for peace.

Second Gentleman

16
  1. I never heard any soldier dislike it.

Lucio

17 - 18
  1. I believe thee; for I think thou never wast where grace was
  2. said.

Second Gentleman

19
  1. No? A dozen times at least.

First Gentleman

20
  1. What? In meter?

Lucio

21
  1. In any proportion, or in any language.

First Gentleman

22
  1. I think, or in any religion.

Lucio

23 - 25
  1. Ay, why not? Grace is grace, despite of all controversy; as
  2. for example, thou thyself art a wicked villain, despite of
  3. all grace.

First Gentleman

26
  1. Well; there went but a pair of shears between us.

Lucio

27 - 28
  1. I grant; as there may between the lists and the velvet. Thou
  2. art the list.

First Gentleman

29 - 32
  1. And thou the velvetthou art good velvet; thou’rt a
  2. three-pil’d piece, I warrant thee. I had as lief be a list
  3. of an English kersey as be pil’d, as thou art pil’d, for a
  4. French velvet. Do I speak feelingly now?

Lucio

33 - 36
  1. I think thou dost; and indeed with most painful feeling of
  2. thy speech. I will, out of thine own confession, learn to
  3. begin thy health; but, whilst I live, forget to drink after
  4. thee.

First Gentleman

37
  1. I think I have done myself wrong, have I not?

Second Gentleman

38
  1. Yes, that thou hast; whether thou art tainted or free.
  1. Enter Bawd Mistress Overdone.

Lucio

40
  1. Behold, behold, where Madam Mitigation comes!

First Gentleman

41
  1. I have purchas’d as many diseases under her roof as come to

Second Gentleman

42
  1. To what, I pray?

Lucio

43
  1. Judge.

Second Gentleman

44
  1. To three thousand dolors a year.

First Gentleman

45
  1. Ay, and more.

Lucio

46
  1. A French crown more.

First Gentleman

47 - 48
  1. Thou art always figuring diseases in me; but thou art full
  2. of error, I am sound.

Lucio

49 - 51
  1. Nay, not (as one would say) healthy; but so sound as things
  2. that are hollow.
  3. Thy bones are hollow; impiety has made a feast of thee.

First Gentleman

52
  1. How now, which of your hips has the most profound sciatica?

Mistress Overdone

53 - 54
  1. Well, well; there’s one yonder arrested and carried to
  2. prison was worth five thousand of you all.

Second Gentleman

55
  1. Who’s that, I pray thee?

Mistress Overdone

56
  1. Marry, sir, that’s Claudio, Signior Claudio.

First Gentleman

57
  1. Claudio to prison? ’Tis not so.

Mistress Overdone

58 - 60
  1. Nay, but I know ’tis so. I saw him arrested; saw him carried
  2. away; and which is more, within these three days his head to
  3. be chopp’d off.

Lucio

61 - 62
  1. But after all this fooling, I would not have it so. Art thou
  2. sure of this?

Mistress Overdone

63 - 64
  1. I am too sure of it; and it is for getting Madam Julietta
  2. with child.

Lucio

65 - 66
  1. Believe me, this may be. He promis’d to meet me two hours
  2. since, and he was ever precise in promise-keeping.

Second Gentleman

67 - 68
  1. Besides, you know, it draws something near to the speech we
  2. had to such a purpose.

First Gentleman

69
  1. But most of all agreeing with the proclamation.

Lucio

70
  1. Away! Let’s go learn the truth of it.
  1. Exit with Gentlemen.

Mistress Overdone

72 - 75
  1. Thus, what with the war, what with the sweat, what with the
  2. gallows, and what with poverty, I am custom-shrunk.
  3. Enter Clown Pompey.
  4. How now? What’s the news with you?

Pompey

76
  1. Yonder man is carried to prison.

Mistress Overdone

77
  1. Well; what has he done?

Pompey

78
  1. A woman.

Mistress Overdone

79
  1. But what’s his offense?

Pompey

80
  1. Groping for trouts in a peculiar river.

Mistress Overdone

81
  1. What? Is there a maid with child by him?

Pompey

82 - 83
  1. No; but there’s a woman with maid by him. You have not heard
  2. of the proclamation, have you?

Mistress Overdone

84
  1. What proclamation, man?

Pompey

85
  1. All houses in the suburbs of Vienna must be pluck’d down.

Mistress Overdone

86
  1. And what shall become of those in the city?

Pompey

87 - 88
  1. They shall stand for seed. They had gone down too, but that
  2. a wise burgher put in for them.

Mistress Overdone

89 - 90
  1. But shall all our houses of resort in the suburbs be pull’d
  2. down?

Pompey

91
  1. To the ground, mistress.

Mistress Overdone

92 - 93
  1. Why, here’s a change indeed in the commonwealth! What shall
  2. become of me?

Pompey

94 - 98
  1. Come; fear not you; good counsellors lack no clients. Though
  2. you change your place, you need not change your trade; I’ll
  3. be your tapster still. Courage! There will be pity taken on
  4. you. You that have worn your eyes almost out in the service,
  5. you will be consider’d.

Mistress Overdone

99
  1. What’s to do here, Thomas tapster? Let’s withdraw.

Pompey

100 - 101
  1. Here comes Signior Claudio, led by the Provost to prison;
  2. and there’s Madam Juliet.
  1. Exeunt.
  1. Enter Provost, Claudio, Juliet, Officers.

Claudio

104 - 105
  1. Fellow, why dost thou show me thus to th’ world?
  2. Bear me to prison, where I am committed.

Provost

106 - 107
  1. I do it not in evil disposition,
  2. But from Lord Angelo by special charge.

Claudio

108 - 111
  1. Thus can the demigod, Authority,
  2. Make us pay down for our offense by weight
  3. The words of heaven: on whom it will, it will;
  4. On whom it will not, so; yet still ’tis just.
  1. Enter Lucio and two Gentlemen.

Lucio

113
  1. Why, how now, Claudio? Whence comes this restraint?

Claudio

114 - 119
  1. From too much liberty, my Lucio, liberty:
  2. As surfeit is the father of much fast,
  3. So every scope by the immoderate use
  4. Turns to restraint. Our natures do pursue,
  5. Like rats that ravin down their proper bane,
  6. A thirsty evil, and when we drink we die.

Lucio

120 - 123
  1. If I could speak so wisely under an arrest, I would send for
  2. certain of my creditors; and yet, to say the truth, I had as
  3. lief have the foppery of freedom as the mortality of
  4. imprisonment. What’s thy offense, Claudio?

Claudio

124
  1. What but to speak of would offend again.

Lucio

125
  1. What, is’t murder?

Claudio

126
  1. No.

Lucio

127
  1. Lechery?

Claudio

128
  1. Call it so.

Provost

129
  1. Away, sir, you must go.

Claudio

130
  1. One word, good friend. Lucio, a word with you.

Lucio

131 - 132
  1. A hundred! If they’ll do you any good.
  2. Is lechery so look’d after?

Claudio

133 - 143
  1. Thus stands it with me: upon a true contract
  2. I got possession of Julietta’s bed.
  3. You know the lady; she is fast my wife,
  4. Save that we do the denunciation lack
  5. Of outward order. This we came not to,
  6. Only for propagation of a dow’r
  7. Remaining in the coffer of her friends,
  8. From whom we thought it meet to hide our love
  9. Till time had made them for us. But it chances
  10. The stealth of our most mutual entertainment
  11. With character too gross is writ on Juliet.

Lucio

144
  1. With child, perhaps?

Claudio

145 - 160
  1.                      Unhappily, even so.
  2. And the new deputy now for the Duke
  3. Whether it be the fault and glimpse of newness,
  4. Or whether that the body public be
  5. A horse whereon the governor doth ride,
  6. Who, newly in the seat, that it may know
  7. He can command, lets it straight feel the spur;
  8. Whether the tyranny be in his place,
  9. Or in his eminence that fills it up,
  10. I stagger inbut this new governor
  11. Awakes me all the enrolled penalties
  12. Which have, like unscour’d armor, hung by th’ wall
  13. So long that nineteen zodiacs have gone round
  14. And none of them been worn; and for a name
  15. Now puts the drowsy and neglected act
  16. Freshly on me’tis surely for a name.

Lucio

161 - 163
  1. I warrant it is; and thy head stands so tickle on thy
  2. shoulders that a milkmaid, if she be in love, may sigh it
  3. off. Send after the Duke, and appeal to him.

Claudio

164 - 175
  1. I have done so, but he’s not to be found.
  2. I prithee, Lucio, do me this kind service:
  3. This day my sister should the cloister enter,
  4. And there receive her approbation.
  5. Acquaint her with the danger of my state;
  6. Implore her, in my voice, that she make friends
  7. To the strict deputy; bid herself assay him.
  8. I have great hope in that; for in her youth
  9. There is a prone and speechless dialect,
  10. Such as move men; beside, she hath prosperous art
  11. When she will play with reason and discourse,
  12. And well she can persuade.

Lucio

176 - 179
  1. I pray she may; as well for the encouragement of the like,
  2. which else would stand under grievous imposition, as for the
  3. enjoying of thy life, who I would be sorry should be thus
  4. foolishly lost at a game of tick-tack. I’ll to her.

Claudio

180
  1. I thank you, good friend Lucio.

Lucio

181
  1. Within two hours.

Claudio

182
  1.                   Come, officer, away!
  1. Exeunt.
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