Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editors: Brent Whitted, Paul Yachnin
Peer Reviewed

The Tempest (Modern)

Enter Alonso, Sebastian, Antonio, Gonzalo, 1515Adrian, Francisco, and others.
Gonzalo By'r lakin, I can go no further, sir;
My old bones aches. Here's a maze trod indeed
Through fourth-rights and meanders. By your patience,
I needs must rest me.
Old lord, I cannot blame thee,
Who am myself attached with weariness
To th'dulling of my spirits. Sit down and rest.
Even here I will put off my hope and keep it
No longer for my flatterer. He is drowned
1525Whom thus we stray to find, and the sea mocks
Our frustrate search on land. Well, let him go.
Antonio [Aside to Sebastian] I am right glad that he's so out of hope.
Do not for one repulse forgo the purpose
That you resolved t'effect.
[Aside to Antonio] The next advantage
Will we take throughly.
[Aside to Sebastian] Let it be tonight,
For now they are oppressed with travail; they
Will not nor cannot use such vigilance
As when they are fresh.
[Aside to Antonio] I say tonight. No more.
Solemn and strange music, and Prospero on the top [i.e., on the upper stage], invisible. Enter several strange shapes bringing in a banquet, and dance about it with gentle actions of salutations, and, inviting the King [and others] to eat, they depart.
1540Alonso What harmony is this, my good friends? Hark!
Gonzalo Marvelous sweet music!
Alonso Give us kind keepers, heavens! What were these?
Sebastian A living drollery! Now I will believe
That there are unicorns, that in Arabia
1545There is one tree, the phoenix' throne -- one phoenix
At this hour reigning there.
I'll believe both --
And what does else want credit, come to me,
And I'll be sworn 'tis true. Travelers ne'er did lie,
1550Though fools at home condemn 'em.
If in Naples
I should report this now, would they believe me?
If I should say I saw such islanders
(For certes, these are people of the island),
1555Who, though they are of monstrous shape, yet note
Their manners are more gentle, kind, than of
Our human generation you shall find
Many -- nay, almost any.
[Aside] Honest Lord,
1560Thou hast said well, for some of you there present
Are worse than devils.
I cannot too much muse
Such shapes, such gesture, and such sound expressing
(Although they want the use of tongue) a kind
1565Of excellent dumb discourse.
[Aside] Praise in departing.
They vanished strangely.
No matter, since
They have left their viands behind, for we have stomachs.
1570Will't please you taste of what is here?
Not I.
Gonzalo Faith, sir, you need not fear. When we were boys,
Who would believe that there were mountaineers
Dewlapped like bulls, whose throats had hanging at 'em
1575Wallets of flesh? Or that there were such men
Whose heads stood in their breasts, which now we find
Each putter-out of five for one will bring us
Good warrant of?
I will stand to and feed,
1580Although my last. No matter, since I feel
The best is past. Brother, my Lord the Duke:
Stand to and do as we.
Thunder and lightning. Enter Ariel like a harpy, claps his wings upon the table, and with a quaint device, the 1585banquet vanishes.
Ariel You are three men of sin, whom Destiny
(That hath to instrument this lower world,
And what is in't) the never surfeited sea
Hath caused to belch up you; and on this island,
1590Where man doth not inhabit, you 'mongst men,
Being most unfit to live, I have made you mad.
And even with such-like valor, men hang and drown
Their proper selves.
[Alonso, Sebastian, and others draw their swords.]
You fools! I and my fellows
Are ministers of Fate. The elements
1595Of whom your swords are tempered may as well
Wound the loud winds, or with bemocked-at stabs
Kill the still-closing waters, as diminish
One dowl that's in my plume. My fellow ministers
Are like invulnerable; if you could hurt,
1600Your swords are now too massy for your strengths
And will not be uplifted. But remember,
For that's my business to you, that you three
From Milan did supplant good Prospero,
Exposed unto the sea (which hath requite it)
1605Him and his innocent child, for which foul deed
The powers (delaying, not forgetting) have
Incensed the seas and shores (yea, all the creatures!)
Against your peace. Thee of thy son, Alonso,
They have bereft, and do pronounce by me:
1610Ling'ring perdition, worse than any death
Can be at once, shall step by step attend
You and your ways; whose wraths to guard you from
(Which here, in this most desolate isle, else falls
Upon your heads) is nothing but heart's sorrow
1615And a clear life ensuing.
He vanishes in thunder; then, to soft music, enter the shapes again and dance with mocks and mows and carrying out the table.
Prospero Bravely the figure of this harpy hast thou
1620Performed, my Ariel. A grace it had, devouring!
Of my instruction hast thou nothing bated
In what thou hadst to say; so with good life
And observation strange, my meaner ministers
Their several kinds have done. My high charms' work,
1625And these, mine enemies, are all knit up
In their distractions. They now are in my power,
And in these fits I leave them while I visit
Young Ferdinand (whom they suppose is drowned)
And his and mine loved darling.
1630Gonzalo I'th'name of something holy, sir, why stand you
In this strange stare?
Oh, it is monstrous, monstrous!
Methought the billows spoke and told me of it;
The winds did sing it to me, and the thunder,
1635That deep and dreadful organ pipe, pronounced
The name of Prosper -- it did bass my trespass.
Therefore, my son i'th'ooze is bedded; and
I'll seek him deeper than e'er plummet sounded,
And with him there lie mudded.
Exit [Alonso].
1640Sebastian But one fiend at a time,
I'll fight their legions o'er.
I'll be thy second.
Exit [Sebastian, Antonio, and Francisco].
Gonzalo All three of them are desperate. Their great guilt
(Like poison given to work a great time after)
1645Now 'gins to bite the spirits. I do beseech you,
That are of suppler joints, follow them swiftly,
And hinder them from what this ecstasy
May now provoke them to.
[To remaining others] Follow, I pray you.
Exeunt omnes.