Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Not Peer Reviewed

Titus Andronicus (Quarto 1, 1594)


The most lamentable Tragedie
Like stinging Bees in hottest summers day,
2125Led by their Master to the flowred fields,
And be aduengde on cursed Tamora:
And as he saith, so say we all with him.
Lucius. I humblie thanke him and I thanke you all,
But who comes here led by a lustie Gothe?

2130
Enter a Goth leading of Aron with his child
in his Armes.

Goth. Renowmed Lucius from our troupes I straid,
To gaze vpon a ruinous Monasterie,
And as I earnestly did fixe mine eye,
2135Vpon the wasted building suddainely,
I heard a child crie vnderneath a wall,
I made vnto the noise, when soone I heard,
The crying babe controld with this discourse:
Peace tawnie slaue, halfe me, and halfe thy Dame,
2140Did not thy hue bewray whose brat thou art,
Had nature lent thee but thy mothers looke,
Villaine thou mightst haue bin an Emperour.
But where the bull and Cow are both milke white,
They neuer doe beget a coleblacke Calfe:
2145Peace Villaine peace, euen thus he rates the babe,
For I must beare thee to a trustie Goth,
VVho when he knowes thou art the Empresse babe,
VVill hold thee dearely for thy mothers sake.
VVith this my weapon drawen I rusht vpon him
2150Surprisde him suddainely, and brought him hither
To vse as you thinke needefull of the man.
Lucius. Oh worthie Goth this is the incarnate diuell,
That robd Andronicus of his good hand,
This is the Pearle that pleasd your Empresse eye,
2155And her's the base fruit of her burning lust,
Say wall-eyd slaue whither wouldst thou conuay,
This