Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Not Peer Reviewed

Two Gentlemen of Verona (Folio 1, 1623)


20

THE Two Gentlemen of Verona.



1
Actus primus, Scena prima.



Valentine: Protheus, and Speed.
Valentine.
CEease to perswade, my louing Protheus;
5Home-keeping youth, haue euer homely wits,
Wer't not affection chaines thy tender dayes
To the sweet glaunces of thy honour'd Loue,
I rather would entreat thy company,
To see the wonders of the world abroad,
10Then (liuing dully sluggardiz'd at home)
Weare out thy youth with shapelesse idlenesse.
But since thou lou'st; loue still, and thriue therein,
Euen as I would, when I to loue begin.
Pro. Wilt thou be gone? Sweet Valentine adew,
15Thinke on thy Protheus, when thou (hap'ly) seest
Some rare note-worthy obiect in thy trauaile.
Wish me partaker in thy happinesse,
When thou do'st meet good hap; and in thy danger,
(If euer danger doe enuiron thee)
20Commend thy grieuance to my holy prayers,
For I will be thy beades-man, Valentine.
Val. And on a loue-booke pray for my successe?
Pro. Vpon some booke I loue, I'le pray for thee.
Val. That's on some shallow Storie of deepe loue,
25How yong Leander crost the Hellespont.
Pro. That's a deepe Storie, of a deeper loue,
For he was more then ouer-shooes in loue.
Val. 'Tis true; for you are ouer-bootes in loue,
And yet you neuer swom the Hellespont.
30Pro. Ouer the Bootes? nay giue me not the Boots.
Val. No, I will not; for it boots thee not.
Pro. What?
Val. To be in loue; where scorne is bought with
Coy looks, with hart-sore sighes: one fading moments
35With twenty watchfull, weary, tedious nights;
If hap'ly won, perhaps a haplesse gaine;
If lost, why then a grieuous labour won;
How euer: but a folly bought with wit,
Or else a wit, by folly vanquished.
40Pro. So, by your circumstance, you call me foole.
Val. So, by your circumstance, I feare you'll proue.
Pro. 'Tis Loue you cauill at, I am not Loue.
Val. Loue is your master, for he masters you;
And he that is so yoked by a foole,
45Me thinkes should not be chronicled for wise.
Pro. Yet Writers say; as in the sweetest Bud,
The eating Canker dwels; so eating Loue
Inhabits in the finest wits of all.
Val. And Writers say; as the most forward Bud
50Is eaten by the Canker ere it blow,
Euen so by Loue, the yong, and tender wit
Is turn'd to folly, blasting in the Bud,
Loosing his verdure, euen in the prime,
And all the faire effects of future hopes.
55But wherefore waste I time to counsaile thee
That art a votary to fond desire?
Once more adieu: my Father at the Road
Expects my comming, there to see me ship'd.
Pro. And thither will I bring thee Valentine.
60 Val. Sweet Protheus, no: Now let vs take our leaue:
To Millaine let me heare from thee by Letters
Of thy successe in loue; and what newes else
Betideth here in absence of thy Friend:
And I likewise will visite thee with mine.
65Pro. All happinesse bechance to thee in Millaine.
Val. As much to you at home: and so farewell.
Exit.
Pro. He after Honour hunts, I after Loue;
He leaues his friends, to dignifie them more;
I loue my selfe, my friends, and all for loue:
70Thou Iulia, thou hast metamorphis'd me:
Made me neglect my Studies, loose my time;
Warre with good counsaile; set the world at nought;
Made Wit with musing, weake; hart sick with thought.
Sp. Sir Protheus: 'saue you: saw you my Master?
75 Pro. But now he parted hence to embarque for Millain.
Sp. Twenty to one then, he is ship'd already,
And I haue plaid the Sheepe in loosing him.
Pro. Indeede a Sheepe doth very often stray,
And if the Shepheard be awhile away.
80 Sp. You conclude that my Master is a Shepheard then,
and I Sheepe?
Pro. I doe.
Sp. Why then my hornes are his hornes, whether I
wake or sleepe.
85Pro. A silly answere, and fitting well a Sheepe.
Sp. This proues me still a Sheepe.
Pro. True: and thy Master a Shepheard.
Sp. Nay, that I can deny by a circumstance.
Pro. It shall goe hard but ile proue it by another.
90 Sp. The Shepheard seekes the Sheepe, and not the
Sheepe the Shepheard; but I seeke my Master, and my
Master seekes not me: therefore I am no Sheepe.
Pro. The Sheepe for fodder follow the Shepheard,
the Shepheard for foode followes not the Sheepe: thou
95for wages followest thy Master, thy Master for wages
followes not thee: therefore thou art a Sheepe.
Sp. Such another proofe will make me cry baâ.
Pro. But do'st thou heare: gau'st thou my Letter
to Iulia?
Sp. I