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Duke. Not a resemblance, but a certainty. Yet since I see you fearful, that neither my coat, integrity, nor my persuasion, can with ease attempt you, I will go further than I meant, to pluck all fears out of


Look you, fir, here is the hand and feal of the duke; you know the character, I doubt not, and the signet is not strange to you.

Prov. I know them both.
Duke. The contents of this is the return of the duke; you

shall anon over-read it at your pleasure; where you shall find within these two days he will be here. This is a thing which Angelo knows not; for he this very day receives letters of strange tenour, perchance, of the duke's death, perchance, of his entring into some monastery, but, by chance, nothing of what is here writ. Look, the unfolding star calls up the shepherd; put not yourself into amazement how these things should be; all difficulties are but easy when they are known. Call your executioner, and off with Barnardine’s head: I will give him a present shrift, and advise him for a better place. Yet you are amaz’d, but this shall absolutely resolve you. Come away; it it almoft clear dawn.

[Exeunt. SCENE VIII.

Enter Clown. Clown. I am as well acquainted here, as I was in our house of profession; one would think, it were mistress Over-don's own house; for here be many of her old customers. First, here's young master Rash; he's in for a commodity of brown pepper and old ginger, ninescore and seventeen pounds; of which he made five marks ready money: marry, then, ginger was not much in request; for the old women were all dead. Then is there here one master Caper, at the fuit of master Three-Pile the mercer, for some four suits of peach-colour'd satin, which now peaches him a beggar. Then have we here young Dizzy, and young master Deep-vow, and master Copper-Spur, and master Starve-Lacky the rapier and dagger-man, and young Drop-beire that kill'd lusty Pudding, and master Froth-light the tilter, and brave master


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Shoo-tye the great traveller, and wild Half-Canne that stabb’d
Pots, and, I think, forty more; all great doers in our trade,
and are now in for the lord's sake.

Enter Abhorson.
Abhor. Sirrah, bring Barnardine hither.

Clown. Master Barnardine, you must rise and be hang’d, master
Abhor. What hoa, Barnardine !

Barnardine within.
Barnar. A pox o’your throats ! who makes that noise there?
what are you?

Clown. Your friend, sir, the hangman: you must be so good, fir, to rise, and be put to death.

Barnar. Away, you rogue, away; I am sleepy.
Abhor. Tell him, he must awake, and that quickly too.

Clown. Pray, mafter Barnardine, awake’till you are executed, and Neep afterwards.

Abhor. Go in to him, and fetch him out.
Clown. He is coming, fir, he is coming; I hear the straw rustle.

Enter Barnardine.
Abhor. Is the axe upon the block, firrah?
Clown. Very ready, sir.
Barnar. How now, Abhorson? what's the news with you?

Abbor. Truly, fir, I would desire you to clap into your prayers: for, look you, the warrant's come.

Barnar. You rogue, I have been drinking all night, I am not fitted for't.

Clown. O, the better, fir; for he that drinks all night, and is hang’d betimes in the morning, may sleep the founder all the next day.

Enter Duke.
Abhor. Look you, fır, here comes your ghostly father ; do we
jest now, think you?
Duke. Sir, induced by my charity, and hearing how hastily you

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are to depart, I am come to advise you, comfort you,



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Barnar. Friar, not I: I have been drinking hard all night, and will have more time to prepare me, or they shall beat out my brains with billets ; I will not consent to die this day, that's certain.

Duke. O, sir, you must; and therefore, I beseech you, look forward on the journey you


go. Barnar. I swear, I will not die to day for any man's persuasion. Duke. But hear you.

Barnar. Not a word: if you have any thing to say to me, come to my ward; for thence will not I to-day.


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Duke. Unfit to live, or die: o gravel heart !

Prov. After him, fellows: bring him to the block.
Now, fir, how do you find the prisoner?

Duke. A creature unprepar'd, unmeet for death;
And to transport him in the mind he is,
Were damnable.

Prov. Here in the prison, father,
There dy'd this morning of a cruel fever
One Ragozine, à most notorious pirate,
A man of Claudio's years; his beard and head
Just of his colour. What if we omit
This reprobate, till he were well inclin'd,
And satisfy the deputy with the visage
Of Ragozine, more like to Claudio ?

Duke. 0, 'tis an accident that heav'n provides :
Dispatch it presently; the hour draws on
Prefix'd by Angelo : see this be done,
And fent according to command; while I
Persuade this rude wretch willingly to die.

Prov. This shall be done, good father, presently.


But Barnardine must die this afternoon:
And how shall we continue Claudio,
To save me from the danger that might come,
If he were known alive?

Duke. Let this be done;
Put them in secret holds, Claudio and Barnardine :
Ere twice the sun hath made his journal greeting
To th’under generation, you shall find
Your safety manifest.

Prov. I am your free dependant.

Duke. Quick, quick, and send the head to Angelo. [Exit. Prov.
Now will I write letters to Angelo.
The provost he shall bear them, whose contents
Shall witness to him I am near at home;
And that by great injunctions I am bound
To enter publickly: him I'll desire
To meet me at the confecrated fount,
A league below the city; and from thence,
By cold gradation and well-balanc'd form,
We shall proceed with Angelo.

Enter Provost.
Prov. Here is the head, I'll carry it myself.

Duke. Convenient is it: make a swift return;
For I would commune with you of such things
That want no ear but yours.
Prov. I'll make all speed.

[Exit. SCENE x.

Isabel within. Isab. Peace, hoa, be here !

Duke. The tongue of Isabel. She comes to know If

yet her brother’s pardon be come hither : But I will keep her ign’rant of her good, To make her heav'nly comfort of despair, When it is least expected.

Enter Enter Isabel.

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Isab. By your leave.
Duke. Good morning to you, fair and gracious daughter.

Isab. The better giv'n me by so holy a man:
Hath yet the deputy sent my brother's pardon?

Duke. He hath releas’d him, Isabel, from the world; His head is off, and sent to Angelo.

Isab. Nay, but it is not so.

Duke. It is no other.
Show wisdom, daughter, in your closest patience.

Isab. O, I will to him, and pluck out his eyes.
Duke. You shall not be admitted to his fight.

Isab. Unhappy Claudio ! wretched Isabel?
Injurious world I moft damned Angelo !

Duke. This hurts not him, nor profits you a jot:
Forbear it therefore; give your cause to heav’n:
Mark what I say, which you fhall furely find
By ev'ry syllable a faithful verity.
The duke comes home to-morrow; dry your eyes ;
One of our convent, and his confessor,
Gives me this news: already he hath carry'd
Notice to Escalus and Angelo;
Who do prepare to meet him at the gates,
There to give up their power. Pace your wisdom
In that good path that I would wish it go,

you shall have your bosom on this wretch, Grace of the duke, revenges to your heart, And gen’ral honour.

Ifab. I'm directed by you.

Duke. This letter then to friar Peter give;
'Tis that he fent me of the duke's return:
Say, by this token, I desire his company
At Mariana's house. Her cause and yours
I'll perfect him withal, and he shall bring you
Before the duke; and to the head of Angelo


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