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  • Title: Pericles, Prince of Tyre (Modern)
  • Editor: Tom Bishop

  • 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
    Editor: Tom Bishop
    Not Peer Reviewed

    Pericles, Prince of Tyre (Modern)

    Enter Gower.
    Gower Imagine Pericles arrived at Tyre,
    Welcomed and settled to his own desire;
    His woeful queen we leave at Ephesus,
    Unto Diana there's a votaress.
    1375Now to Marina bend your mind,
    Whom our fast-growing scene must find
    At Tharsus, and by Cleon trained
    In music's letters, who hath gained
    Of education all the grace,
    1380Which makes her both the heart and place
    Of general wonder. But, alack,
    That monster envy, oft the wrack
    Of earnèd praise, Marina's life
    Seeks to take off by treason's knife,
    1385And in this kind: our Cleon has
    One daughter and a full-grown lass,
    Even ripe for marriage-rite. This maid
    Hight Philoten, and it is said
    For certain in our story she
    1390Would ever with Marina be.
    Be't when they weaved the sleded silk,
    With fingers long, small, white as milk,
    Or when she would with sharp needle wound
    The cambric, which she made more sound
    1395By hurting it, or when to th'lute
    She sung, and made the night-bird mute,
    That still records with moan, or when
    She would with rich and constant pen
    Vail to her mistress Dian, still
    1400This Philoten contends in skill
    With absolute Marina; so
    With dove of Paphos might the crow
    Vie feathers white. Marina gets
    All praises, which are paid as debts
    1405And not as given. This so darks
    In Philoten all graceful marks
    That Cleon's wife with envy rare
    A present murder does prepare
    For good Marina, that her daughter
    1410Might stand peerless by this slaughter.
    The sooner her vile thoughts to stead,
    Lychorida, our nurse, is dead,
    And cursed Dionyza hath
    The pregnant instrument of wrath
    1415Prest for this blow. The unborn event
    I do commend to your content.
    Only, I carried wingèd time
    Post on the lame feet of my rhyme,
    Which never could I so convey,
    1420Unless your thoughts went on my way.
    Dionyza does appear,
    With Leonine, a murderer.