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The Two Noble Kinsmen by William Shakespeare and John Fletcher [Apocrypha]

Part 4 out of 4

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Arise, great Sir, and give the tydings eare
That are most dearly sweet and bitter.


Hath wakt us from our dreame?


List then: your Cosen,
Mounted upon a Steed that Emily
Did first bestow on him, a blacke one, owing
Not a hayre worth of white--which some will say
Weakens his price, and many will not buy
His goodnesse with this note: Which superstition
Heere findes allowance--On this horse is Arcite
Trotting the stones of Athens, which the Calkins
Did rather tell then trample; for the horse
Would make his length a mile, if't pleas'd his Rider
To put pride in him: as he thus went counting
The flinty pavement, dancing, as t'wer, to'th Musicke
His owne hoofes made; (for as they say from iron
Came Musickes origen) what envious Flint,
Cold as old Saturne, and like him possest
With fire malevolent, darted a Sparke,
Or what feirce sulphur else, to this end made,
I comment not;--the hot horse, hot as fire,
Tooke Toy at this, and fell to what disorder
His power could give his will; bounds, comes on end,
Forgets schoole dooing, being therein traind,
And of kind mannadge; pig-like he whines
At the sharpe Rowell, which he freats at rather
Then any jot obaies; seekes all foule meanes
Of boystrous and rough Iadrie, to dis-seate
His Lord, that kept it bravely: when nought serv'd,
When neither Curb would cracke, girth breake nor diffring plunges
Dis-roote his Rider whence he grew, but that
He kept him tweene his legges, on his hind hoofes on end he stands,
That Arcites leggs, being higher then his head,
Seem'd with strange art to hand: His victors wreath
Even then fell off his head: and presently
Backeward the Iade comes ore, and his full poyze
Becomes the Riders loade: yet is he living,
But such a vessell tis, that floates but for
The surge that next approaches: he much desires
To have some speech with you: Loe he appeares.

[Enter Theseus, Hipolita, Emilia, Arcite in a chaire.]


O miserable end of our alliance!
The gods are mightie, Arcite: if thy heart,
Thy worthie, manly heart, be yet unbroken,
Give me thy last words; I am Palamon,
One that yet loves thee dying.


Take Emilia
And with her all the worlds joy: Reach thy hand:
Farewell: I have told my last houre. I was false,
Yet never treacherous: Forgive me, Cosen:--
One kisse from faire Emilia: Tis done:
Take her: I die.


Thy brave soule seeke Elizium.


Ile close thine eyes, Prince; blessed soules be with thee!
Thou art a right good man, and while I live,
This day I give to teares.


And I to honour.


In this place first you fought: ev'n very here
I sundred you: acknowledge to the gods
Our thankes that you are living.
His part is playd, and though it were too short,
He did it well: your day is lengthned, and
The blissefull dew of heaven do's arowze you.
The powerfull Venus well hath grac'd her Altar,
And given you your love: Our Master Mars
Hath vouch'd his Oracle, and to Arcite gave
The grace of the Contention: So the Deities
Have shewd due justice: Beare this hence.


O Cosen,
That we should things desire, which doe cost us
The losse of our desire! That nought could buy
Deare love, but losse of deare love!


Never Fortune
Did play a subtler Game: The conquerd triumphes,
The victor has the Losse: yet in the passage
The gods have beene most equall: Palamon,
Your kinseman hath confest the right o'th Lady
Did lye in you, for you first saw her, and
Even then proclaimd your fancie: He restord her
As your stolne Iewell, and desir'd your spirit
To send him hence forgiven; The gods my justice
Take from my hand, and they themselves become
The Executioners: Leade your Lady off;
And call your Lovers from the stage of death,
Whom I adopt my Frinds. A day or two
Let us looke sadly, and give grace unto
The Funerall of Arcite; in whose end
The visages of Bridegroomes weele put on
And smile with Palamon; for whom an houre,
But one houre, since, I was as dearely sorry,
As glad of Arcite: and am now as glad,
As for him sorry. O you heavenly Charmers,
What things you make of us! For what we lacke
We laugh, for what we have, are sorry: still
Are children in some kind. Let us be thankefull
For that which is, and with you leave dispute
That are above our question. Let's goe off,
And beare us like the time. [Florish. Exeunt.]


I would now aske ye how ye like the Play,
But, as it is with Schoole Boyes, cannot say,
I am cruell fearefull: pray, yet stay a while,
And let me looke upon ye: No man smile?
Then it goes hard, I see; He that has
Lov'd a yong hansome wench, then, show his face--
Tis strange if none be heere--and if he will
Against his Conscience, let him hisse, and kill
Our Market: Tis in vaine, I see, to stay yee;
Have at the worst can come, then! Now what say ye?
And yet mistake me not: I am not bold;
We have no such cause. If the tale we have told
(For tis no other) any way content ye
(For to that honest purpose it was ment ye)
We have our end; and ye shall have ere long,
I dare say, many a better, to prolong
Your old loves to us: we, and all our might
Rest at your service. Gentlemen, good night. [Florish.]


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