Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editors: David Carnegie, Mark Houlahan
Peer Reviewed

Twelfth Night (Folio 1, 1623)

Scena Quarta.
Enter Duke, Viola, Curio, and others.
Du. Giue me some Musick; Now good morow frends.
885Now good Cesario , but that peece of song,
That old and Anticke song we heard last night;
Me thought it did releeue my passion much,
More then light ayres, and recollected termes
Of these most briske and giddy-paced times.
890Come, but one verse.
Cur. He is not heere (so please your Lordshippe) that
should sing it?
Du. Who was it?
Cur. Feste the Iester my Lord, a foole that the Ladie
895Oliuiaes Father tooke much delight in. He is about the
Du. Seeke him out, and play the tune the while.
Musicke playes.
Come hither Boy, if euer thou shalt loue
900In the sweet pangs of it, remember me:
For such as I am, all true Louers are,
Vnstaid and skittish in all motions else,
Saue in the constant image of the creature
That is belou'd. How dost thou like this tune?
905Vio. It giues a verie eccho to the seate
Where loue is thron'd.
Du. Thou dost speake masterly,
My life vpon't, yong though thou art, thine eye
Hath staid vpon some fauour that it loues:
910Hath it not boy?
Vio. A little, by your fauour.
Du. What kinde of woman ist?
Vio. Of your complection.
Du. She is not worth thee then. What yeares ifaith?
915Vio. About your yeeres my Lord.
Du. Too old by heauen: Let still the woman take
An elder then her selfe, so weares she to him;
So swayes she leuell in her husbands heart:
For boy, howeuer we do praise our selues,
920Our fancies are more giddie and vnfirme,
More longing, wauering, sooner lost and worne,
Then womens are.
Vio. I thinke it well my Lord.
Du. Then let thy Loue be yonger then thy selfe,
925Or thy affection cannot hold the bent:
For women are as Roses, whose faire flowre
Being once displaid, doth fall that verie howre.
Vio. And so they are: alas, that they are so:
To die, euen when they to perfection grow.
930Enter Curio & Clowne.
Du. O fellow come, the song we had last night:
Marke it Cesario, it is old and plaine;
The Spinsters and the Knitters in the Sun,
And the free maides that weaue their thred with bones,
935Do vse to chaunt it: it is silly sooth,
And dallies with the innocence of loue,
Like the old age.
Clo. Are you ready Sir?
Duke. I prethee sing. Musicke.
940The Song.
Come away, come away death,
And in sad cypresse let me be laide.
Fye away, fie away breath,
I am slaine by a faire cruell maide:
945 My shrowd of white, stuck all with Ew, O prepare it.
My part of death no one so true did share it.
Not a flower, not a flower sweete
On my blacke coffin, let there be strewne:
Not a friend, not a friend greet
950My poore corpes, where my bones shall be throwne:
A thousand thousand sighes to saue, lay me ô where
Sad true louer neuer find my graue, to weepe there.
Du. There's for thy paines.
Clo. No paines sir, I take pleasure in singing sir.
955Du. Ile pay thy pleasure then.
Clo. Truely sir, and pleasure will be paide one time, or
Du. Giue me now leaue, to leaue thee.
Clo. Now the melancholly God protect thee, and the
960Tailor make thy doublet of changeable Taffata, for thy
minde is a very Opall. I would haue men of such constan-
cie put to Sea, that their businesse might be euery thing,
and their intent euerie where, for that's it, that alwayes
makes a good voyage of nothing. Farewell. Exit
965Du. Let all the rest giue place: Once more Cesario,
Get thee to yond same soueraigne crueltie:
Tell her my loue, more noble then the world
Prizes not quantitie of dirtie lands,
The parts that fortune hath bestow'd vpon her:
970Tell her I hold as giddily as Fortune:
But 'tis that miracle, and Queene of Iems
That nature prankes her in, attracts my soule.
Vio. But if she cannot loue you sir.
Du. It cannot be so answer'd.
975Vio. Sooth but you must.
Say that some Lady, as perhappes there is,
Hath for your loue as great a pang of heart
As you haue for Oliuia: you cannot loue her:
You tel her so: Must she not then be answer'd?
980Du. There is no womans sides
Twelfe Night, or, What you will. 263
Can bide the beating of so strong a passion,
As loue doth giue my heart: no womans heart
So bigge, to hold so much, they lacke retention.
Alas, their loue may be call'd appetite,
985No motion of the Liuer, but the Pallat,
That suffer surfet, cloyment, and reuolt,
But mine is all as hungry as the Sea,
And can digest as much, make no compare
Betweene that loue a woman can beare me,
990And that I owe Oliuia.
Vio. I but I know.
Du. What dost thou knowe?
Vio. Too well what loue women to men may owe:
In faith they are as true of heart, as we.
995My Father had a daughter lou'd a man
As it might be perhaps, were I a woman
I should your Lordship.
Du. And what's her history?
Vio. A blanke my Lord: she neuer told her loue,
1000But let concealment like a worme i'th budde
Feede on her damaske cheeke: she pin'd in thought,
And with a greene and yellow melancholly,
She sate like Patience on a Monument,
Smiling at greefe. Was not this loue indeede?
1005We men may say more, sweare more, but indeed
Our shewes are more then will: for still we proue
Much in our vowes, but little in our loue.
Du. But di'de thy sister of her loue my Boy?
Vio. I am all the daughters of my Fathers house,
1010And all the brothers too: and yet I know not.
Sir, shall I to this Lady?
Du. I that's the Theame,
To her in haste: giue her this Iewell: say,
My loue can giue no place, bide no denay. exeunt