Internet Shakespeare Editions

About this text

  • Title: The Winter's Tale (Modern)
  • Editor: Hardin Aasand
  • ISBN: 978-1-55058-367-0

    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: Hardin Aasand
    Not Peer Reviewed

    The Winter's Tale (Modern)

    Enter Camillo and Archidamus.
    If you shall chance, Camillo, to visit Bohemia on the like occasion 5whereon my services are now on-foot, you shall see (as I have said) great difference betwixt our Bohemia and your Sicilia.
    I think this coming summer the King of Sicilia means to pay Bohemia the visitation which he justly owes him.
    Wherein our entertainment shall shame us, we will be justified in our loves. For indeed --
    Beseech you --
    Verily, I speak it in the freedom of my knowledge. We 15cannot with such magnificence -- in so rare -- I know not what to say. We will give you sleepy drinks, that your senses (unintelligent of our insufficiency) may, though they cannot praise us, as little accuse us.
    You pay a great deal too dear for what's given freely.
    Believe me, I speak as my understanding instructs me and as mine honesty puts it to utterance.
    CamilloSicilia cannot show himself overkind to 25Bohemia. They were trained together in their childhoods, and there rooted betwixt them then such an affection which cannot choose but branch now. Since their more mature dignities and royal necessities made separation of their society, their encounters (though not personal) hath been royally 30attornied with interchange of gifts, letters, loving embassies, that they have seemed to be together, though absent, shook hands as over a vast, and embraced as it were from the ends of opposed winds. The heavens continue their loves.
    35Archidamus I think there is not in the world either malice or matter to alter it. You have an unspeakable comfort of your young Prince Mamillius. It is a gentleman of the greatest promise that ever came into my note.
    I very well agree with you in the hopes of him. 40It is a gallant child, one that indeed physics the subject, makes old hearts fresh. They that went on crutches ere he was born desire yet their life to see him a man.
    Would they else be content to die?
    Yes, if there were no other excuse why they should 45desire to live.
    If the King had no son, they would desire to live on crutches till he had one.