The Two Gentlemen of Verona
Act 1, Scene 2
Verona. The garden of Julia’s house.
- Enter Julia and Lucetta.
Julia2 - 3
- But say, Lucetta, now we are alone,
- Wouldst thou then counsel me to fall in love?
- Ay, madam, so you stumble not unheedfully.
Julia5 - 7
- Of all the fair resort of gentlemen
- That every day with parle encounter me,
- In thy opinion which is worthiest love?
Lucetta8 - 9
- Please you repeat their names, I’ll show my mind
- According to my shallow simple skill.
- What think’st thou of the fair Sir Eglamour?
Lucetta11 - 12
- As of a knight well-spoken, neat, and fine;
- But were I you, he never should be mine.
- What think’st thou of the rich Mercatio?
- Well of his wealth; but of himself, so, so.
- What think’st thou of the gentle Proteus?
- Lord, Lord! To see what folly reigns in us!
- How now? What means this passion at his name?
Lucetta18 - 20
- Pardon, dear madam, ’tis a passing shame
- That I (unworthy body as I am)
- Should censure thus on lovely gentlemen.
- Why not on Proteus, as of all the rest?
- Then thus: of many good I think him best.
- Your reason?
Lucetta24 - 25
- I have no other but a woman’s reason:
- I think him so, because I think him so.
- And wouldst thou have me cast my love on him?
- Ay—if you thought your love not cast away.
- Why, he, of all the rest, hath never mov’d me.
- Yet he, of all the rest, I think best loves ye.
- His little speaking shows his love but small.
- Fire that’s closest kept burns most of all.
- They do not love that do not show their love.
- O, they love least that let men know their love.
- I would I knew his mind.
- Peruse this paper, madam.
- “To Julia”—say, from whom?
- That the contents will show.
- Say, say; who gave it thee?
Lucetta39 - 41
- Sir Valentine’s page; and sent, I think, from Proteus.
- He would have given it you, but I, being in the way,
- Did in your name receive it; pardon the fault, I pray.
Julia42 - 48
- Now, by my modesty, a goodly broker!
- Dare you presume to harbor wanton lines?
- To whisper and conspire against my youth?
- Now trust me, ’tis an office of great worth,
- And you an officer fit for the place.
- There! Take the paper; see it be return’d,
- Or else return no more into my sight.
- To plead for love deserves more fee than hate.
- Will ye be gone?
- That you may ruminate.
Julia53 - 69
- And yet I would I had o’erlook’d the letter;
- It were a shame to call her back again,
- And pray her to a fault for which I chid her.
- What ’fool is she, that knows I am a maid,
- And would not force the letter to my view!
- Since maids, in modesty, say “no” to that
- Which they would have the profferer construe “ay.”
- Fie, fie, how wayward is this foolish love,
- That (like a testy babe) will scratch the nurse
- And presently, all humbled, kiss the rod!
- How churlishly I chid Lucetta hence,
- When willingly I would have had her here!
- How angerly I taught my brow to frown,
- When inward joy enforc’d my heart to smile!
- My penance is, to call Lucetta back
- And ask remission for my folly past.
- What ho! Lucetta!
- Enter Lucetta.
- What would your ladyship?
- Is’t near dinner-time?
Lucetta73 - 75
- I would it were,
- That you might kill your stomach on your meat,
- And not upon your maid.
Julia76 - 77
- What is’t that you
- Took up so gingerly?
- Why didst thou stoop then?
- To take a paper up that I let fall.
- And is that paper nothing?
- Nothing concerning me.
- Then let it lie for those that it concerns.
Lucetta84 - 85
- Madam, it will not lie where it concerns
- Unless it have a false interpreter.
- Some love of yours hath writ to you in rhyme.
Lucetta87 - 88
- That I might sing it, madam, to a tune:
- Give me a note, your ladyship can set.
Julia89 - 90
- As little by such toys as may be possible:
- Best sing it to the tune of “Light o’ love.”
- It is too heavy for so light a tune.
- Heavy? Belike it hath some burden then?
- Ay; and melodious were it, would you sing it.
- And why not you?
- I cannot reach so high.
Julia96 - 98
- Let’s see your song.
- Takes the letter.
- How now, minion?
Lucetta99 - 100
- Keep tune there still, so you will sing it out.
- And yet methinks I do not like this tune.
- You do not?
- No, madam, ’tis too sharp.
- You, minion, are too saucy.
Lucetta104 - 106
- Nay, now you are too flat,
- And mar the concord with too harsh a descant:
- There wanteth but a mean to fill your song.
- The mean is drown’d with your unruly bass.
- Indeed I bid the base for Proteus.
Julia109 - 113
- This babble shall not henceforth trouble me.
- Here is a coil with protestation!
- Tears the letter.
- Go, get you gone; and let the papers lie:
- You would be fing’ring them, to anger me.
Lucetta114 - 115
- She makes it strange, but she would be best pleas’d
- To be so ang’red with another letter.
Julia117 - 142
- Nay, would I were so ang’red with the same.
- O hateful hands, to tear such loving words!
- Injurious wasps, to feed on such sweet honey,
- And kill the bees that yield it with your stings!
- I’ll kiss each several paper for amends.
- Look, here is writ “kind Julia.” Unkind Julia,
- As in revenge of thy ingratitude,
- I throw thy name against the bruising stones,
- Trampling contemptuously on thy disdain.
- And here is writ “love-wounded Proteus.”
- Poor wounded name: my bosom as a bed
- Shall lodge thee till thy wound be throughly heal’d;
- And thus I search it with a sovereign kiss.
- But twice, or thrice, was “Proteus” written down:
- Be calm, good wind, blow not a word away
- Till I have found each letter in the letter,
- Except mine own name; that, some whirlwind bear
- Unto a ragged, fearful, hanging rock,
- And throw it thence into the raging sea.
- Lo, here in one line is his name twice writ,
- “Poor forlorn Proteus, passionate Proteus:
- To the sweet Julia”—that I’ll tear away—
- And yet I will not, sith so prettily
- He couples it to his complaining names.
- Thus will I fold them one upon another;
- Now kiss, embrace, contend, do what you will.
- Enter Lucetta.
Lucetta144 - 145
- Dinner is ready, and your father stays.
- Well, let us go.
- What, shall these papers lie like tell-tales here?
- If you respect them, best to take them up.
Lucetta149 - 150
- Nay, I was taken up for laying them down;
- Yet here they shall not lie, for catching cold.
- I see you have a month’s mind to them.
Lucetta152 - 153
- Ay, madam, you may say what sights you see;
- I see things too, although you judge I wink.
- Come, come, will’t please you go?