Taken from the Complete Works of William Shakespeare
The Taming of the Shrew
SCENE,—Sometimes in SICILIA; sometimes in BOHEMIA.
SCENE II.—The same. A Room of State in
Enter LEONTES, POLIXENES, HERMIONE
MAMILLIUS, CAMILLO, and Attendants.
Pol. Nine changes of the watery star have
The shepherd’s note since we have left our
Without a burden: time as long again
Would be fill’d up, my brother, with our thanks
And yet we should, for perpetuity,
Go hence in debt: and therefore, like a cipher,
Yed standing in rich place, I multiply
With one we-thank-you many thousands more
That go before it.
Leon. Stay your thanks awhile,
And pay them when you part.
Pol. Sir, that’s to-morrow.
I am question’d by my fears, of what may
Or breed upon our absence; that may blow
No sneaping winds at home, to make us say,
This is put forth too truly. Besides, I have stay’d
To tire your royalty.
Leon. We are together, brother,
Than you can put us to’t.
Pol. No longer stay.
Leon. One seven-night longer.
Pol. Very sooth, to-morrow.
Leon. We’ll part the time between’s then:
and in that
I’ll no gainsaying.
Pol. Press me not, beseech you, so.
There is no tongue that moves, none, none i’
the world [now,
So soon as yours, could win me: so it should
Were there necessity in your request, although
‘Twere needful I denied it. My affairs
Do even drag me homeward: which to hinder,
Were, in your love, a whip to me; my stay,
To you a charge and trouble: to save both,
Farewell, our brother.
Leon. Tongue-tied, our queen? Speak you.
Her. I had thought, sir, to have held my
You had drawn oaths from him not to stay.
Charge him too coldly. Tell him, you are sure
All in Bohemia’s well: this satisfaction
The by-gone day proclaimed: say this to him,
He’s beat from his best ward.
Leon. Well said, Hermione.
Her. To tell he longs to see his son, were
But let him say so then, and let him go;
But let him swear so, and he shall not stay,
We’ll thwack him hence with distaffs.—
Yet of your royal presence [to POLIXENES] I’ll
The borrow of a week. When at Bohemia
You take my lord, I’ll give him my commission
To let him there a month behind the gest
Prefix’d for his parting:—yet, good deed,
I love thee not a jar of the clock behind
What lady she her lord.—You’ll stay?
Pol. No, madam.
Her. Nay, but you will?
Pol. I may not, verily.
ou put me off with limber vows; but I,
Though you would seek to unsphere the stars
with oaths, Should yet say, Sir, no going. Verily
You shall not go; a lady’s verily is
As potent as a lord’s. Will you go yet?
Force me to keep you as a prisoner,
Not like a guest: so you shall pay your fees
When you depart, and save your thanks. How
(On 9/21/14 – Join me for the continuation of “The Winter’s Tale”,
ACT I. SCENE II. (cont’d)—The same. A Room of State in the Palace.