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  • Title: Two Noble Kinsmen (Quarto, 1634)

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

    Scaena 2. Enter Emilia alone, with 2. Pictures.
    Emilia. Yet I may binde those wounds up, that must(open
    And bleed to death for my sake else; Ile choose,
    And end their strife: Two such yong hansom men
    2350Shall never fall for me, their weeping Mothers,
    Following the dead cold ashes of their Sonnes
    Shall never curse my cruelty: Good heaven,
    The Two Noble Kinsmen.
    What a sweet face has Arcite? if wise nature
    With all her best endowments, all those beuties
    2355She sowes into the birthes of noble bodies,
    Were here a mortall woman, and had in her
    The coy denialls of yong Maydes, yet doubtles,
    She would run mad for this man: what an eye?
    Of what a fyry sparkle, and quick sweetnes,
    2360Has this yong Prince? Here Love himselfe sits smyling,
    Iust such another wanton Ganimead,
    Set Love a fire with, and enforcd the god
    Snatch up the goodly Boy, and set him by him
    A shining constellation: What a brow,
    2365Of what a spacious Majesty he carries?
    Arch'd like the great eyd Iuno's, but far sweeter,
    Smoother then Pelops Shoulder? Fame and honour
    Me thinks from hence, as from a Promontory
    Pointed in heaven, should clap their wings, and sing
    2370To all the under world, the Loves, and Fights
    Of gods, and such men neere 'em. Palamon,
    Is but his foyle, to him, a meere dull shadow,
    Hee's swarth, and meagre, of an eye as heavy
    As if he had lost his mother; a still temper,
    2375No stirring in him, no alacrity,
    Of all this sprightly sharpenes, not a smile;
    Yet these that we count errours may become him:
    Narcissus was a sad Boy, but a heavenly:
    Oh who can finde the bent of womans fancy?
    2380I am a Foole, my reason is lost in me,
    I have no choice, and I have ly'd so lewdly
    That women ought to beate me. On my knees
    I aske thy pardon: Palamon, thou art alone,
    And only beutifull, and these the eyes,
    2385These the bright lamps of beauty, that command
    And threaten Love, and what yong Mayd dare crosse 'em
    What a bold gravity, and yet inviting
    Has this browne manly face? O Love, this only
    From this howre is Complexion: Lye there Arcite,
    2390Thou art a changling to him, a meere Gipsey.
    The Two Noble Kinsmen.
    And this the noble Bodie: I am sotted,
    Vtterly lost: My Virgins faith has fled me.
    For if my brother but even now had ask'd me
    Whether I lov'd, I had run mad for Arcite,
    2395Now if my Sister; More for Palamon,
    Stand both together: Now, come aske me Brother,
    Alas, I know not: aske me now sweet Sister,
    I may goe looke; What a meere child is Fancie,
    That having two faire gawdes of equall sweetnesse,
    2400Cannot distinguish, but must crie for both.
    Enter Emil. and Gent:
    Emil. How now Sir?
    Gent. From the Noble Duke your Brother
    Madam, I bring you newes: The Knights are come.
    2405Emil. To end the quarrell?
    Gent. Yes.
    Emil. Would I might end first:
    What sinnes have I committed, chast Diana,
    That my unspotted youth must now be soyld
    2410With blood of Princes? and my Chastitie
    Be made the Altar, where the lives of Lovers,
    Two greater, and two better never yet
    Made mothers joy, must be the sacrifice
    To my unhappy Beautie?
    2415Enter Theseus, Hipolita, Perithous and attendants.
    Theseus. Bring 'em in quickly,
    By any meanes, I long to see 'em.
    Your two contending Lovers are return'd,
    And with them their faire Knights: Now my faire Sister,
    2420You must love one of them.
    Emil. I had rather both,
    So neither for my sake should fall untimely
    Enter Messengers. Curtis.
    Thes. Who saw 'em?
    2425Per. I a while.
    Gent. And I.
    Thes. From whence come you Sir?
    Mess. From the Knights.
    The Two Noble Kinsmen.
    Thes. Pray speake
    2430You that have seene them, what they are.
    Mess. I will Sir,
    And truly what I thinke: Six braver spirits
    Then these they have brought, (if we judge by the outside)
    I never saw, nor read of: He that stands
    2435In the first place with Arcite, by his seeming
    Should be a stout man, by his face a Prince,
    (His very lookes so say him) his complexion,
    Nearer a browne, than blacke; sterne, and yet noble,
    Which shewes him hardy, fearelesse, proud of dangers:
    2440The circles of his eyes show faire within him,
    And as a heated Lyon, so he lookes;
    His haire hangs long behind him, blacke and shining
    Like Ravens wings: his shoulders broad, and strong,
    Armd long and round, and on his Thigh a Sword
    2445Hung by a curious Bauldricke; when he frownes
    To seale his will with, better o' my conscience
    Was never Souldiers friend.
    Thes. Thou ha'st well describde him,
    Per. Yet a great deale short
    2450Me thinkes, of him that's first with Palamon.
    Thes. Pray speake him friend.
    Per. I ghesse he is a Prince too,
    And if it may be, greater; for his show
    Has all the ornament of honour in't:
    2455Hee's somewhat bigger, then the Knight he spoke of,
    But of a face far sweeter; His complexion
    Is (as a ripe grape) ruddy: he has felt
    Without doubt what he fights for, and so apter
    To make this cause his owne: In's face appeares
    2460All the faire hopes of what he undertakes,
    And when he's angry, then a setled valour
    (Not tainted with extreames) runs through his body,
    And guides his arme to brave things: Feare he cannot,
    He shewes no such soft temper, his head's yellow,
    2465Hard hayr'd, and curld, thicke twind like Ivy tops,
    Not to undoe with thunder; In his face
    K The
    The Two Noble Kinsmen.
    The liverie of the warlike Maide appeares,
    Pure red, and white, for yet no beard has blest him.
    And in his rowling eyes, sits victory,
    2470As if she ever ment to corect his valour:
    His Nose stands high, a Character of honour.
    His red lips, after fights, are fit for Ladies.
    Emil. Must these men die too?
    Per. When he speakes, his tongue
    2475Sounds like a Trumpet; All his lyneaments
    Are as a man would wish 'em, strong, and cleane,
    He weares a well-steeld Axe, the staffe of gold,
    His age some five and twenty.
    Mess. Ther's another,
    2480A little man, but of a tough soule, seeming
    As great as any: fairer promises
    In such a Body, yet I never look'd on.
    Per. O, he that's freckle fac'd?
    Mess. The same my Lord,
    2485Are they not sweet ones?
    Per. Yes they are well.
    Mess. Me thinkes,
    Being so few, and well disposd, they show
    Great, and fine art in nature, he's white hair'd,
    2490Not wanton white, but such a manly colour
    Next to an aborne, tough, and nimble set,
    Which showes an active soule; his armes are brawny
    Linde with strong sinewes: To the shoulder peece,
    Gently they swell, like women new conceav'd,
    2495Which speakes him prone to labour, never fainting
    Vnder the waight of Armes; stout harted, still,
    But when he stirs, a Tiger; he's gray eyd,
    Which yeelds compassion where he conquers: sharpe
    To spy advantages, and where he finds 'em,
    2500He's swift to make 'em his: He do's no wrongs,
    Nor takes none; he's round fac'd, and when he smiles
    He showes a Lover, when he frownes, a Souldier:
    About his head he weares the winners oke,
    And in it stucke the favour of his Lady:
    The Two Noble Kinsmen.
    2505His age, some six and thirtie. In his hand
    He beares a charging Staffe, embost with silver.
    Thes. Are they all thus?
    Per. They are all the sonnes of honour.
    Thes. Now as I have a soule I long to see 'em,
    2510Lady you shall see men fight now.
    Hip. I wish it,
    But not the cause my Lord; They would show
    Bravely about the Titles of two Kingdomes;
    Tis pitty Love should be so tyrannous:
    2515O my soft harted Sister, what thinke you?
    Weepe not, till they weepe blood; Wench it must be.
    Thes. You have steel'd 'em with your Beautie: honord(Friend,
    To you I give the Feild; pray order it,
    Fitting the persons that must use it.
    2520Per. Yes Sir.
    Thes. Come, Ile goe visit 'em: I cannot stay.
    Their fame has fir'd me so; Till they appeare,
    Good Friend be royall.
    Per. There shall want no bravery.
    2525Emilia. Poore wench goe weepe, for whosoever wins,
    Looses a noble Cosen, for thy sins. Exeunt.