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Pericles: Act IV, Prologue

Act IV, Prologue

  1. Enter Gower.


1 - 52
  1. Imagine Pericles arriv’d at Tyre,
  2. Welcom’d and settled to his own desire.
  3. His woeful queen we leave at Ephesus,
  4. Unto Diana there ’s a votaress.
  5. Now to Marina bend your mind,
  6. Whom our fast-growing scene must find
  7. At Tharsus, and by Cleon train’d
  8. In music’s letters, who hath gain’d
  9. Of education all the grace,
  10. Which makes her both th’ heart and place
  11. Of general wonder. But alack,
  12. That monster Envy, oft the wrack
  13. Of earned praise, Marina’s life
  14. Seeks to take off by treason’s knife,
  15. And in this kind: our Cleon hath
  16. One daughter, and a full-grown wench,
  17. Even ripe for marriage rite; this maid
  18. Hight Philoten, and it is said
  19. For certain in our story, she
  20. Would ever with Marina be:
  21. Be’t when they weav’d the sleided silk
  22. With fingers long, small, white as milk;
  23. Or when she would with sharp needle wound
  24. The cambric, which she made more sound
  25. By hurting it; or when to th’ lute
  26. She sung, and made the night-bird mute,
  27. That still records with moan; or when
  28. She would with rich and constant pen
  29. Vail to her mistress Dian; still
  30. This Philoten contends in skill
  31. With absolute Marina: so
  32. The dove of Paphos might with the crow
  33. Vie feathers white. Marina gets
  34. All praises, which are paid as debts,
  35. And not as given. This so darks
  36. In Philoten all graceful marks,
  37. That Cleon’s wife, with envy rare,
  38. A present murderer does prepare
  39. For good Marina, that her daughter
  40. Might stand peerless by this slaughter.
  41. The sooner her vile thoughts to stead,
  42. Lychorida, our nurse, is dead,
  43. And cursed Dionyza hath
  44. The pregnant instrument of wrath
  45. Prest for this blow. The unborn event
  46. I do commend to your content;
  47. Only I carried winged time
  48. Post on the lame feet of my rhyme,
  49. Which never could I so convey,
  50. Unless your thoughts went on my way.
  51. Dionyza does appear,
  52. With Leonine, a murderer.
  1. Exit.
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