Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
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Two Noble Kinsmen (Quarto, 1634)

Scaena 4. A Battaile strooke withim: Then a Retrait: Florish.
Then Enter Theseus (victor) the three Queenes meete him,
and fall on their faces before him.
5601. Qu. To thee no starre be darke.
2. Qu. Both heaven and earth
Friend thee for ever.
3. Qu. All the good that may
Be wishd upon thy head, I cry Amen too't.
565Thes. Th'imparciall Gods, who from the mounted hea-(vens
View us their mortall Heard, behold who erre,
And in their time chastice: goe and finde out
The bones of your dead Lords, and honour them
With treble Ceremonie, rather then a gap
570Should be in their deere rights, we would suppl'it.
But those we will depute, which shall invest
You in your dignities, and even each thing
Our hast does leave imperfect; So adiew
And heavens good eyes looke on you, what are those?
575Exeunt Queenes.
Herald. Men of great quality, as may be judgd
By their appointment; Some of Thebs have told's
They are Sisters children, Nephewes to the King.
Thes. By'th Helme of Mars, I saw them in the war,
580Like to a paire of Lions, succard with prey,
Make lanes in troopes agast. I fixt my note
Constantly on them; for they were a marke
The Two Noble Kinsmen.
Worth a god's view: what prisoner was't that told me
When I enquired their names?
585Herald. We leave, they'r called
Arcite and Palamon,
Thes. Tis right, those, those
They are not dead?
Her. Nor in a state of life, had they bin taken
590When their last hurts were given, twas possible
3. Hearses rea-
They might have bin recovered; Yet they breathe
And haue the name of men.
Thes. Then like men use'em
The very lees of such (millions of rates)
595Exceede the wine of others: all our Surgions
Convent in their behoofe, our richest balmes
Rather then niggard wast, their lives concerne us,
Much more then Thebs is worth, rather then have 'em
Freed of this plight, and in their morning state
600(Sound and at liberty) I would 'em dead,
But forty thousand fold, we had rather have 'em
Prisoners to us, then death; Beare 'em speedily
From our kinde aire, to them unkinde, and minister
What man to man may doe for our sake more,
605Since I have knowne frights, fury, friends, beheastes,
Loves, provocations, zeale, a mistris Taske,
Desire of liberty, a feavour, madnes,
Hath set a marke which nature could not reach too
Without some imposition, sicknes in will
610Or wrastling strength in reason, for our Love
And great Appollos mercy, all our best,
Their best skill tender. Leade into the Citty,
Where having bound things scatterd, we will post Florish.
To Athens for our Army. Exeunt.