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Duke. Dear Sir, ere long I'll visit you again.
[your sister. Prov. As many as you please.
Duke. Bring them to speak where I may be conceald, Yet hear them.
[Exeunt Duke and Provost, S CE N E II. Claud. Now, filter, what's the comfort ?
Ifab. Why, as all comforts are; most good in deed: Lord Angelo, having affairs to heav'n, Intends
for his swift ambaslador; Where you shall be an everlasting leiger. Therefore your best appointment make with speed, To-morrow you set on.
Claud. Is there no remedy?
Isab. None, but such remedy, as, to save a head, To cleave a heart in twain.
Claud. But is there any ?
Isab. Yes, brother, you may live :
Claud. Perpetual durance ?
Ifab. Ay, just ; perpetual durance; a restraint,
Claud. But in what nature ?
Isab. In such a one, as, you consenting to't, Would bark your honour from that trunk you bear, And leave
naked. Claud. Let me know the point.
Ifab.“ Oh, I do fear thee, Claudio; and I quake, “ Left thou a fev'rous life should's entertain, “ And six or seven winters more respect “ Than a perpetual honour. Dar'st thou die? • The sense of death is most in apprehension ; " And the poor beetle that we tread upon, “ In corp'ral sufferance finds a pang as great, :56 As when a giant dies. VOL.I.
Claud. Why give you me this shame? Think
I can a resolution fetch
Isab. “ There fpake my brother; there my father's
Claud. The priestly Angelo?
Isab. Oh, 'tis the cunning livery of hell,
Claud. Oh, heavens! it cannot be.
Tab. Yes, he would give thee for this rank offence, So to offend him still. This night's the time That I should do what I abhor to name, Or else thou dy'st to-morrow.
Claud. Thou shalt not do’t.
Ifab. Oh, were it but my life, I'd throw it down for
your deliverance As frankly as a pin.
Claud. Thanks, dearest Isabel.
Claud. Yes. Has he affections in him,
Isab. Which is the least?
Claud. If it were damnable, he being so wise,
Isab. What says my brother?
Ifad. And shamed life a hateful.
Claud. • Ay, but to die, and go we know not where;
Imagine howling; 'tis too horrible !
That age, ach, penury, imprisonment
Ifab. Alas! alas !
Claud. Sweet sister, let me live ;
Ifa. Oh, you beast !
Claud. Nay, hear me, Isabel.
Isab. Oh, fie, fie, fie !
Claud. Oh hear me, Isabella.
III. To them, Enter Duke and Provost. Duke. Vouchsafe a word, young sister ; but one word. Ifab. What is your will?
Duke. Might you difpenfe with your leisure, I would by and hy have some speech with you; the fatisfaction I would require, is likewise your own benefit,
Isab. I have no superfluous leisure; my stay must be stolen out of other affairs : but I will attend you a while.
Duke. Son, I have overheard what hath passed between you
and your fifter. Angelo had never the purpose to corrupt her; only he hath made an assay of her virtue, to practise his judgment with the disposition of natures. She, having the truth of honour in her, hath made him that gracious denial, which he is most glad to receive. I am confeffor to Angelo, and I know this to be true ; therefore prepare yourself to death. Do not falsify your resolution with hopes that are fallible; to-morrow you must die; go to your knees, and make ready.
Claud. Let me ask my sister pardon; I am so out of love with life, that I will sue to be rid of it.
[Exit Claud. Duke. Hold you there; farewel. Provost, a word
Prov. What's your will, father !
Duke. That now you are come, you will be gone ; leave me a while with the maid: my mind promises.' with my habit, no loss ihall touch her by my company. Prov. In good time.
[Exit Prov. Duke. The hand that hath made you fair, hath made you good, the goodness that is cheap in beauty, makes beauty brief in goodness: but grace, being the soul of your complexion, thall keep the body of it ever fair. The assault that Angelo hath made on you, fortune hath convey'd to my understanding; and but that frailty hath examples for his falling, I should wonder at Angelo. How will you do to content this substitute, and to save your brother? Isab. I am now going to resolve him: I had rathers
my brother die by the law, than my fon should be únlawfully born. But, oh, how much is the good Duke deceiv'd in Angelo? If ever he return, and I can speak to him, I will open my lips in vain, or dis
government. Duke. That shall not be much amiss; yet as the matter now stands, he will avoid your accusation; he made trial of you only. Therefore fasten your ear on my advisings: to the love I have in doing good, a remedy presents itself. I do make myself believe, that you may most uprightly do a poor wronged lady a merited benefit ; redeem your brother from the angry law; do no ítain to your own gracious person; and much please the abfent Duke, if peradventure he fhall ever return to have hearing of this business.
Isab. Let me hear you speak farther; I have spirit to do any thing that appears not foul in the truth of my spirit.
Duke. Virtue is bold, and goodness never fearful : have you not heard speak of Mariana, the filter of Frederick, the grelt foldier who miscarried at sea ?
Isab. I have heard of the lady, and good words went with her name.
Duke. Her should this Angelo have marry'd; was affiance'd to her by oath, and the nuptial appointed: between which time of the contract, and limit of the solemnity, her brother Frederick was wreck'd at sea, having in that perish'd veffel the dowry of his fifter. But mark, how heavily this befel to the poor gentle
There she lost a noble and renowned bro. ther, in his love toward her ever most kind and natural; with him the portion and finew of her fortune, her marriage-dowry; with both, her combinate hufband, this well-seeming Angelo.
Isab. Can this be so? did Angelo fo leave her?
Duke. Left her in tears, and dry'd not one of them with his comfort ; swallow'd his vows whole, pretending, in her, discoveries of dishonour: in few, below'd her on her own lamentation, which she yet wears for his fake; and he, a marble to her tears, is waflied with them, but relents not. Isab. What a merit were it in death to take this poor