Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: Jennifer Forsyth
Peer Reviewed

Cymbeline (Modern)


[1.2]

Enter the Queen, Posthumus, and Imogen
Queen No, be assured you shall not find me, Daughter,
85After the slander of most stepmothers,
Evil-eyed unto you. You're my prisoner, but
Your jailer shall deliver you the keys
That lock up your restraint. For you, Posthumus,
So soon as I can win th'offended King,
90I will be known your advocate; marry, yet
The fire of rage is in him, and 'twere good
You leaned unto his sentence; with what patience,
Your wisdom may inform you.
Posthumus
Please Your Highness,
95I will from hence today.
Queen
You know the peril.
I'll fetch a turn about the garden, pitying
The pangs of barred affections, though the King
Hath charged you should not speak together.
Exit
100Imogen O dissembling courtesy! How fine this tyrant
Can tickle where she wounds! My dearest husband,
I something fear my father's wrath but nothing
(Always reserved my holy duty) what
His rage can do on me. You must be gone,
105And I shall here abide the hourly shot
Of angry eyes, not comforted to live
But that there is this jewel in the world
That I may see again.
Posthumus
My queen, my mistress,
110O lady, weep no more lest I give cause
To be suspected of more tenderness
Than doth become a man. I will remain
The loyalest husband that did e'er plight troth.
My residence in Rome, at one Philario's,
115Who to my father was a friend, to me
Known but by letter. Thither write, my queen,
And with mine eyes I'll drink the words you send
Though ink be made of gall.
Enter Queen
120Queen
Be brief, I pray you.
If the King come, I shall incur I know not
How much of his displeasure -- [Aside] yet I'll move him
To walk this way. I never do him wrong
But he does buy my injuries, to be friends;
125Pays dear for my offenses.
Posthumus Should we be taking leave
As long a term as yet we have to live,
The loathness to depart would grow. Adieu.
Imogen Nay, stay a little:
130Were you but riding forth to air yourself,
Such parting were too petty. Look here, love,
This diamond was my mother's; [Gives ring to Posthumus]
Take it, heart,
But keep it till you woo another wife
When Imogen is dead.
135Posthumus
How, how? Another?
You gentle gods, give me but this I have
And cere up my embracements from a next
With bonds of death. Remain, remain thou here
While sense can keep it on. And sweetest, fairest,
140As I my poor self did exchange for you
To your so infinite loss, so in our trifles
I still win of you. For my sake wear this;
[Gives bracelet to Imogen]
It is a manacle of love. I'll place it
Upon this fairest prisoner.
145Imogen
O the gods!
When shall we see again?
Enter Cymbeline and Lords
Posthumus
Alack, the King!
Cymbeline Thou basest thing, avoid hence, from my sight!
150If after this command thou fraught the court
With thy unworthiness, thou diest. Away:
Thou'rt poison to my blood.
Posthumus
The gods protect you
And bless the good remainders of the court.
155I am gone.
Exit
Imogen
There cannot be a pinch in death
More sharp than this is.
Cymbeline
O disloyal thing
That shouldst repair my youth, thou heapst
160A year's age on me.
Imogen
I beseech you, sir,
Harm not yourself with your vexation.
I am senseless of your wrath; a touch more rare
Subdues all pangs, all fears.
165Cymbeline
Past grace? Obedience?
Imogen Past hope and in despair, that way past grace.
Cymbeline That mightst have had the sole son of my Queen.
Imogen Oh, blessed that I might not! I chose an eagle
170And did avoid a puttock.
Cymbeline Thou tookst a beggar, wouldst have made my throne
A seat for baseness.
Imogen
No, I rather added
A luster to it.
175180
Enter Queen
185190195
Exit
Enter Pisanio
[To Imogen]200205210215220[To Imogen][To Pisanio]
Queen and Imogen exeunt together, Pisanio apart
225
Enter Clotten and two Lords
230[Aside]235[Aside][Aside]240[Aside][Aside]245[Aside]250[Aside]255[Aside]260
Exeunt
Enter Imogen and Pisanio
265270275280285290295300305
Enter a Lady
310[To Pisanio] [To Lady]
Imogen and Lady exeunt together; Pisanio separately
Enter Philario, Iachimo, a Frenchman, a 315Dutchman, and a Spaniard
320325330335340
Enter Posthumus
[To Iachimo, Frenchman, Dutchman, and Spaniard] [Posthumus joins them][To Iachimo, Frenchman, Dutchman, and Spaniard] 345350355360365370375380385390395400405410415420425430435440445450455460465470475480
[Exeunt Posthumus and Iachimo]
485
Exeunt
Enter Queen, Ladies, and Cornelius
490
Exeunt Ladies
495500505510515520
Enter Pisanio
[Aside] 525[Aside][To Pisanio]530[Aside]535540[To Cornelius]
Exit
545550555560[Queen drops the drug, which Pisanio picks up]565570575Exit Pisanio580Enter Pisanio and Ladies[To Ladies]585
Exeunt Queen and Ladies
590
Exit
Enter Imogen alone
595600
Enter Pisanio and Iachimo
605610[Aside]615
[Gives a letter]
Reads620625630635640645650[To Pisanio]655
Exit
660665670675680
Imogen
Not he, I hope.
It is your fault that I have loved Posthumus:
You bred him as my playfellow, and he is
A man worth any woman; over-buys me
Almost the sum he pays.
180Cymbeline
What? Art thou mad?
Imogen Almost, sir, Heaven restore me! Would I were
A neatherd's daughter and my Leonatus
Our neighbor shepherd's son.
Enter Queen
185Cymbeline
Thou foolish thing,
They were again together. You have done
Not after our command. Away with her
And pen her up.
Queen
Beseech your patience. -- Peace,
190Dear lady daughter, peace. -- Sweet sovereign,
Leave us to ourselves and make yourself some comfort
Out of your best advice.
Cymbeline
Nay, let her languish
A drop of blood a day and, being aged,
195Die of this folly.
Exit
Enter Pisanio
Queen
[To Imogen] Fie! You must give way!
Here is your servant. -- How now, sir? What news?
Pisanio
My lord your son drew on my master.
200Queen
Ha?
No harm, I trust, is done?
Pisanio
There might have been,
But that my master rather played than fought
And had no help of anger. They were parted
205By gentlemen at hand.
Queen
I am very glad on't.
Imogen Your son's my father's friend: he takes his part
To draw upon an exile. Oh, brave sir!
I would they were in Afric both together,
210Myself by with a needle that I might prick
The goer-back. Why came you from your master?
Pisanio On his command. He would not suffer me
To bring him to the haven; left these notes
Of what commands I should be subject to
215When't pleased you to employ me.
Queen
This hath been
Your faithful servant. I dare lay mine honor
He will remain so.
Pisanio
I humbly thank Your Highness.
220Queen
[To Imogen] Pray walk awhile.
Imogen [To Pisanio] About some half hour hence, pray you speak with me;
You shall at least go see my lord aboard.
For this time, leave me.
Queen and Imogen exeunt together, Pisanio apart