Internet Shakespeare Editions

About this text

  • Title: Cymbeline (Folio 1, 1623)
  • Editor: Jennifer Forsyth
  • ISBN: 1-55058-300-X

    Copyright Jennifer Forsyth. This text may be freely used for educational, non-profit purposes; for all other uses contact the Editor.
    Author: William Shakespeare
    Editor: Jennifer Forsyth
    Peer Reviewed

    Cymbeline (Folio 1, 1623)

    The Tragedie of Cymbeline.
    3760Make no Collection of it. Let him shew
    His skill in the construction.
    Luc. Philarmonus.
    Sooth. Heere, my good Lord.
    Luc. Read, and declare the meaning.

    WHen as a Lyons whelpe, shall to himselfe vnknown, with-
    out seeking finde, and bee embrac'd by a peece of tender
    Ayre: And when from a stately Cedar shall be lopt branches,
    which being dead many yeares, shall after reuiue, bee ioynted to
    3770the old Stocke, and freshly grow, then shall Posthumus end his
    miseries, Britaine be fortunate, and flourish in Peace and Plen-
    Thou Leonatus art the Lyons Whelpe,
    The fit and apt Construction of thy name
    3775Being Leonatus, doth import so much:
    The peece of tender Ayre, thy vertuous Daughter,
    Which we call Mollis Aer, and Mollis Aer
    We terme it Mulier; which Mulier I diuine
    Is this most constant Wife, who euen now
    3780Answering the Letter of the Oracle,
    Vnknowne to you vnsought, were clipt about
    With this most tender Aire.
    Cym. This hath some seeming.
    Sooth. The lofty Cedar, Royall Cymbeline
    3785Personates thee: And thy lopt Branches, point
    Thy two Sonnes forth: who by Belarius stolne
    For many yeares thought dead, are now reuiu'd
    To the Maiesticke Cedar ioyn'd; whose Issue
    Promises Britaine, Peace and Plenty.
    3790Cym. Well,
    My Peace we will begin: And Caius Lucius,
    Although the Victor, we submit to sar,
    And to the Romane Empire; promising
    To pay our wonted Tribute, from the which
    3795We were disswaded by our wicked Queene,
    Whom heauens in Iustice both on her, and hers,
    Haue laid most heauy hand.
    Sooth. The fingers of the Powres aboue, do tune
    The harmony of this Peace: the Vision
    3800Which I made knowne to Lucius ere the stroke
    Of yet this scarse-cold-Battaile, at this instant
    Is full accomplish'd. For the Romaine Eagle
    From South to West, on wing soaring aloft
    Lessen'd her selfe, and in the Beames o'th' Sun
    3805So vanish'd; which fore-shew'd our Princely Eagle
    Th' Imperiall sar, should againe vnite
    His Fauour, with the Radiant Cymbeline,
    Which shines heere in the West.
    Cym. Laud we the Gods,
    3810And let our crooked Smoakes climbe to their Nostrils
    From our blest Altars. Publish we this Peace
    To all our Subiects. Set we forward: Let
    A Roman, and a Brittish Ensigne waue
    Friendly together: so through Luds-Towne march,
    3815And in the Temple of great Iupiter
    Our Peace wee'l ratifie: Seale it with Feasts.
    Set on there: Neuer was a Warre did cease
    (Ere bloodie hands were wash'd) with such a Peace.