Internet Shakespeare Editions

About this text

  • Title: All's Well That Ends Well (Folio 1, 1623)
  • Editors: Andrew Griffin, Helen Ostovich
  • ISBN: 978-1-55058-432-5

    Copyright Internet Shakespeare Editions. This text may be freely used for educational, non-proift purposes; for all other uses contact the Coordinating Editor.
    Author: William Shakespeare
    Editors: Andrew Griffin, Helen Ostovich
    Not Peer Reviewed

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

    Enter Countesse & Steward
    La Alas! and would you take the letter of her:
    Might you not know she would do, as she has done,
    By sending me a Letter. Reade it agen.
    1560I am S. Iaques Pilgrim, thither gone
    Ambitious loue hath so in me offended
    That bare-foot plod I the cold ground vpon
    With sainted vow my faults to haue amended
    Write, write, that from the bloodie course of warre
    1565My deerest Master your deare sonne, may hie
    Blesse him at home in peace. Whilst I from farre
    His name with zealous feruour sanctifie
    His taken labours bid him me forgiue
    I his despightfull Iuno sent him forth
    1570From Courtly friends, with Camping foes to liue
    Where death and danger dogges the heeles of worth
    He is too good and faire for death, and mee
    Whom I my selfe embrace, to set him free
    Ah what sharpe stings are in her mildest words?
    1575Rynaldo you did neuer lacke aduice so much,
    As letting her passe so: had I spoke with her,
    I could haue well diuerted her intents,
    Which thus she hath preuented.
    Ste Pardon me Madam,
    1580If I had giuen you this at ouer-night,
    She might haue beene ore-tane: and yet she writes
    Pursuite would be but vaine.
    La What Angell shall
    Blesse this vnworthy husband, he cannot thriue,
    1585Vnlesse her prayers, whom heauen delights to heare
    And loues to grant, repreeue him from the wrath
    Of greatest Iustice. Write, write Rynaldo
    To this vnworthy husband of his wife,
    Let euerie word waigh heauie of her worrh,
    1590That he does waigh too light: my greatest greefe,
    Though little he do feele it, set downe sharpely.
    Dispatch the most conuenient messenger,
    When haply he shall heare that she is gone,
    He will returne, and hope I may that shee
    1595Hearing so much, will speede her foote againe,
    Led hither by pure loue: which of them both
    Is deerest to me, I haue no skill in sence
    To make distinction: prouide this Messenger:
    My heart is heauie, and mine age is weake,
    1600Greefe would haue teares, and sorrow bids me speake.