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)

    Enter Posthumus.
    Post. Is there no way for Men to be, but Women
    Must be halfe-workers? We are all Bastards,
    1340And that most venerable man, which I
    Did call my Father, was, I know not where
    When I was stampt. Some Coyner with his Tooles
    Made me a counterfeit: yet my Mother seem'd
    The Dian of that time: so doth my Wife
    1345The Non-pareill of this. Oh Vengeance, Vengeance!
    Me of my lawfull pleasure she restrain'd,
    And pray'd me oft forbearance: did it with
    A pudencie so Rosie, the sweet view on't
    Might well haue warm'd olde Saturne;
    1350That I thought her
    As Chaste, as vn-Sunn'd Snow. Oh, all the Diuels!
    This yellow Iachimo in an houre, was't not?
    Or lesse; at first? Perchance he spoke not, but
    Like a full Acorn'd Boare, a Iarmen on,
    1355Cry'de oh, and mounted; found no opposition
    But what he look'd for, should oppose, and she
    Should from encounter guard. Could I finde out
    The Womans part in me, for there's no motion
    That tends to vice in man, but I affirme
    1360It is the Womans part: be it Lying, note it,
    The womans: Flattering, hers; Deceiuing, hers:
    Lust, and ranke thoughts, hers, hers: Reuenges hers:
    Ambitions, Couetings, change of Prides, Disdaine,
    Nice-longing, Slanders, Mutability;
    1365All Faults that name, nay, that Hell knowes,
    Why hers, in part, or all: but rather all. For euen to Vice
    They are not constant, but are changing still;
    One Vice, but of a minute old, for one
    Not halfe so old as that. Ile write against them,
    1370Detest them, curse them: yet 'tis greater Skill
    In a true Hate, to pray they haue their will:
    The very Diuels cannot plague them better.