Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editors: Andrew Griffin, Helen Ostovich
Not Peer Reviewed

All's Well That Ends Well (Folio 1, 1623)


Alls Well, that Ends Well
253
Do not beleeue him. O behold this Ring,
2915Whose high respect and rich validitie
Did lacke a Paralell: yet for all that
He gaue it to a Commoner a'th Campe
If I be one.
Coun He blushes, and 'tis hit:
2920Of sixe preceding Ancestors that Iemme
Confer'd by testament to'th sequent issue
Hath it beene owed and worne. This is his wife,
That Ring's a thousand proofes.
King Me thought you saide
2925You saw one heere in Court could witnesse it.
Dia I did my Lord, but loath am to produce
So bad an instrument, his names Parrolles
Laf I saw the man to day, if man he bee.
Kin Finde him, and bring him hether.
2930Ros What of him:
He's quoted for a most perfidious slaue
With all the spots a'th world, taxt and debosh'd,
Whose nature sickens: but to speake a truth,
Am I, or that or this for what he'l vtter,
2935That will speake any thing.
Kin She hath that Ring of yours.
Ros I thinke she has; certaine it is I lyk'd her,
And boorded her i'th wanton way of youth:
She knew her distance, and did angle for mee,
2940Madding my eagernesse with her restraint,
As all impediments in fancies course
Are motiues of more fancie, and in fine,
Her insuite comming with her moderne grace,
Subdu'd me to her rate, she got the Ring,
2945And I had that which any inferiour might
At Market price haue bought.
Dia I must be patient:
You that haue turn'd off a first so noble wife,
May iustly dyet me. I pray you yet,
2950(Since you lacke vertue, I will loose a husband)
Send for your Ring, I will returne it home,
And giue me mine againe.
Ros I haue it not.
Kin What Ring was yours I pray you?
2955Dian Sir much like the same vpon your finger.
Kin Know you this Ring, this Ring was his of late.
Dia And this was it I gaue him being a bed.
Kin The story then goes false, you threw it him
Out of a Casement.
2960Dia I haue spoke the truth.
Enter Parolles
Ros My Lord, I do confesse the ring was hers.
Kin You boggle shrewdly, euery feather starts you:
Is this the man you speake of?
Dia I, my Lord.
2965Kin Tell me sirrah, but tell me true I charge you,
Not fearing the displeasure of your master:
Which on your iust proceeding, Ile keepe off,
By him and by this woman heere, what know you?
Par So please your Maiesty, my master hath bin an
2970honourable Gentleman. Trickes hee hath had in him,
which Gentlemen haue.
Kin Come, come, to'th' purpose: Did hee loue this
woman?
Par Faith sir he did loue her, but how.
2975Kin How I pray you?
Par He did loue her sir, as a Gent. loues a Woman.
Kin How is that?
Par He lou'd her sir, and lou'd her not.
Kin As thou art a knaue and no knaue, what an equi-
2980uocall Companion is this?
Par I am a poore man, and at your Maiesties com-
mand.
Laf Hee's a good drumme my Lord, but a naughtie
Orator.
2985Dian Do you know he promist me marriage?
Par Faith I know more then Ile speake.
Kin But wilt thou not speake all thou know'st?
Par Yes so please your Maiesty: I did goe betweene
them as I said, but more then that he loued her, for in-
2990deede he was madde for her, and talkt of Sathan, and of
Limbo, and of Furies, and I know not what: yet I was in
that credit with them at that time, that I knewe of their
going to bed, and of other motions, as promising her
marriage, and things which would deriue mee ill will to
2995speake of, therefore I will not speake what I know.
Kin Thou hast spoken all alreadie, vnlesse thou canst
say they are maried, but thou art too fine in thy euidence,
therefore stand aside. This Ring you say was yours.
Dia I my good Lord.
3000Kin Where did you buy it? Or who gaue it you?
Dia It was not giuen me, nor I did not buy it.
Kin Who lent it you?
Dia It was not lent me neither.
Kin Where did you finde it then?
3005Dia I found it not.
Kin If it were yours by none of all these wayes,
How could you giue it him?
Dia I neuer gaue it him.
Laf This womans an easie gloue my Lord, she goes
3010off and on at pleasure.
Kin This Ring was mine, I gaue it his first wife.
Dia It might be yours or hers for ought I know.
Kin Take her away, I do not like her now,
To prison with her: and away with him,
3015Vnlesse thou telst me where thou hadst this Ring,
Thou diest within this houre.
Dia Ile neuer tell you.
Kin Take her away.
Dia Ile put in baile my liedge.
3020Kin I thinke thee now some common Customer.
Dia By Ioue if euer I knew man 'twas you.
King Wherefore hast thou accusde him al this while.
Dia Because he's guiltie, and he is not guilty:
He knowes I am no Maid, and hee'l sweare too't:
3025Ile sweare I am a Maid, and he knowes not.
Great King I am no strumpet, by my life,
I am either Maid, or else this old mans wife.
Kin She does abuse our eares, to prison with her.
Dia Good mother fetch my bayle. Stay Royall sir,
3030The Ieweller that owes the Ring is sent for,
And he shall surety me. But for this Lord,
Who hath abus'd me as he knowes himselfe,
Though yet he neuer harm'd me, heere I quit him.
He knowes himselfe my bed he hath defil'd,
3035And at that time he got his wife with childe:
Dead though she be, she feeles her yong one kicke:
So there's my riddle, one that's dead is quicke,
And now behold the meaning.

Enter Hellen and Widdow

3040Kin Is there no exorcist
Beguiles the truer Office of mine eyes?
Is't reall that I see?
Hel No my good Lord,
Y
'Tis
254
Alls Well, that Ends Well