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Be you content, fair maid. It is the law, not I, condemns your brother : Were he my kinsman, brother, or my son, It should be thus with him ;-he must die to-morrow.

Isab. To-morrow? O, that's sudden! Spare him,

spare him:

He's not prepar'd for death! Even for our kitchens
We kill the fowl of season ; shall we serve heaven
With less respect than we do minister
To our gross selves? Good, good my lord, bethink you:
Who is it that hath died for this offence ?
There's many have committed it.

Ay, well said.
Ang. The law hath not been dead, though it hath

slept :
Those many had not dar'd to do that evil,
If the first man that did the edict infringe
Had answer'd for his deed: now, 'tis awake;
Takes note of what is done ; and, like a prophet,
Looks in a glass, that shows what future evils,
(Either now or by remissness new-conceiv'd,
And so in progress to be hatch'd and born)
Are now to have no successive degrees,
But, where they live, to end'.

Yet show some pity.
Ang. I show it most of all, when I show justice;
For then I pity those I do not know,
Which a dismiss d offence would after gall;
And do him right, that, answering one foul wrong,
Lives not to act another. Be satisfied ;
Your brother dies to-morrow; be content.


like a prophet, Looks in a glass,] This alludes to the fopperies of the beril, a kind of crystal, which hath a weak tincture of red in it. Among other tricks of astrologers, the discovery of past or future events was supposed to be the consequence of looking into it.

9 But, where they live, to end.] i.e. they should end where they began, i. e, with the criminal.

Isab. So you must be the first, that gives this sentence;
And he, that suffers : 0, it is excellent
To have a giant's strength; but it is tyrannous
To use it like a giant.

That's well said.
Isab. Could great men thunder
As Jove himself does, Jove would ne'er be quiet,

every pelting', petty officer, Would use his heaven for thunder: nothing but thun

Merciful heaven !
Thou rather, with thy sharp and sulphurous bolt,
Split'st the unwedgeable and gnarled oak',
Than the soft myrtle ;-0, but man, proud mant!
Drest in a little brief authority;
Most ignorant of what he's most assur’d,
His glassy essence,-like an angry ape,
Plays such fantastick tricks before high heaven,
As make the angels weep ; who, with our spleens,
Would all themselves laugh mortal '.

Lucio. O, to him, to him, wench: he will relent;
He's coming, I perceive't.

Pray heaven, she win him !
Isab. We cannot weigh our brother with ourself:
Great men may jest with saints: 'tis wit in them;
But, in the less, foul profanation.

Lucio. Thou’rt in the right, girl ; more o'that.

Isab. That in the captain's but a cholerick word, Which in the soldier is flat blasphemy.




pelting, ) i. e. paltry.

gnarled oak,] Gnarre is the old English word for a knot in wood.

“But man, proud man!"

who, with our spleens, Would all themselves laugh mortal.] By spleens, Shakspeare means that peculiar turn of the human mind, that always inclines it to a spiteful, unseasonable mirth. Had the angels that, says Shakspeare, they would laugh themselves out of their immortality, by indulging a passion which does not deserve that prerogative.

Lucio. Art advis'd o'that? more on't.
Ang. Why do you put these sayings upon me?

Isab. Because authority, though it err like others,
Hath yet a kind of medicine in itself,
That skins the vice o'the top: Go to your bosom ;
Knock there ; and ask your heart, what it doth know
That's like my brother's fault: if it confess
A natural guiltiness, such as is his,
Let it not sound a thought upon your tongue
Against my brother's life.

She speaks, and 'tis Such sense, that my sense breeds with it.-Fare you

well. Isab. Gentle my lord, turn back. Ang. I will bethink me:-Come again to-morrow. Isab. Hark, how I'll bribe you: Good my lord, turn

back. Ang. How! bribe me? Isab. Ay, with such gifts, that heaven shall share with

Lucio. You had marr'd all else.

Isab. Not with fond shekels of the tested gold',
Or stones, whose rates are either rich, or poor,
As fancy values them: but with true prayers,
That shall be up at heaven, and enter there,
Ere sun-rise: prayers from preserved soulso,
From fasting maids, whose minds are dedicate
To nothing temporal.

Well :

: come to me To-morrow. Lucio. Go to; it is well : away.

(Aside to ISABEL. Isab. Heaven keep your honour safe !


fond shekels - ] Fond means very frequently in our author, foolish. It signifies in this place valued or prized by folly.

tested gold,) i. e. brought to the test, or cupelled..

preserved souls,] i. e. preserved from the corruption of the world.




Amen : for I Am that way going to temptation,

(A side. Where prayers cross'. Isab.

At what hour to-morrow
Shall I attend your lordship?


time 'fore noon. Isab. Save your honour !

[Exeunt Lucio, ISABELLA, and Provost. Ang.

From thee; even from thy virtue !What's this? what's this? Is this her fault, or mine ? The tempter, or the tempted, who sins most ? Ha! Not she; nor does she tempt : but it is I, That lying by the violet, in the sun, Do, as the carrion does, not as the flower, Corrupt with virtuous season. Can it be, That modesty may more betray our sense Than woman's lightness? Having waste ground enough, Shall we desire to raze the sanctuary, And pitch our evils there ? 0, fy, fy, fy! What dost thou? or what art thou, Angelo ? Dost thou desire her foully, for those things That make her good ? O, let her brother live: Thieves for their robbery have authority, When judges steal themselves. What do I love her, That I desire to hear her speak again, And feast upon her eyes ? What is't I dream on? O cunning enemy, that, to catch a saint, With saints dost bait thy hook! Most dangerous Is that temptation, that doth goad us on To sin in loving virtue: never could the strumpet, With all her double vigour, art, and nature, Once stir my temper; but this virtuous maid


I am that way going to temptation, Where prayers cross.] This appointment of his for the morrow's meeting, being a premeditated exposure of himself to temptation, which it was the general object of prayer to thwart.

Subdues me quite ;-Ever, till now,
When men were fond, I smild and wonder'd how.



A Room in a Prison.

Enter Duke, habited like a Friar, and Provost. Duke. Hail to you, provost! so, I think you are. Prov. I am the provost : What's your will, good friar?

Duke. Bound by my charity, and my bless'd order, I come to visit the afflicted spirits Here in the prison: do me the common right To let me see them; and to make me know The nature of their crimes, that I may minister To them accordingly. Prov. I would do more than that, if more




Look, here comes one ; a gentlewoman of mine,
Who, falling in the flames of her own youth,
Hath blister'd her report: She is with child;
And he that got it, sentenc'd: a young man
More fit to do another such offence,
Than die for this.

When must he die ?
Prov. As I do think, to-morrow.
I have provided for you ; stay a while, [To JULIET.
And you shall be conducted. .

Duke. Repent you, fair one, of the sin you carry ! Juliet. I do; and bear the slame most patiently. Duke. I'll teach you how you shall arraign your con

science, And try your penitence, if it be sound, Or hollowly put on.

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