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"Was this King Priam's joy.
Count. What, one good in ten? You corrupt the fong, Sirrah.
Clo. One good woman in ten, Madam, which is a purifying o'th' fong: 'would, God would ferve the world fo all the year! we'd find no fault with the tythe-woman, if I were the Parfon ; one in ten, quoth a'! an we might have a good woman born but every blazing star, or at an earthquake, 'twould mend the lottery well; a man may draw his heart out, ere he pluck one.
Count. You'll be gone, Sir knave, and do as I command you?
Clo. That man that fhould be at a woman's command, and yet no hurt done! tho' honefty be no puritan, yet it will do no hurt; it will wear the furplis of humility over the black gown of a big heart: I am going, forfooth, the bufinefs is for Helen to come hither.
Count. Well, now.
Stew. I know, Madam, you love your gentlewoman intirely.
Count. Faith, I do ; her father bequeath'd her to me ;. and fhe herself, without other advantages, may lawfully make title to as much love as fhe finds; there is more owing her, than is paid; and more shall be paid her, than he'll demand.
Stew. Madam, I was very late more near her, than, I think, fhe wifh'd me; alone fhe was, and did communicate to herself her own words to her own ears; fhe thought, I dare vow for her, they touch'd not any ftranger fenfe. Her matter was, fhe lov'd your fon; Fortune, fhe faid, was no Goddess, (5) that had put fuch
(5) Fortune, fpe faid, was no Goddess, &c. Love, no God, &c. complain'd against the Queen of Vir gins, &c.] This Paffage ftands thus in the old Gopies :
fuch difference betwixt their two eftates; Love, no God, that would not extend his might, only where qualities were level; Diana, no Queen of Virgins, that would fuffer her poor Knight to be furpriz'd without refcue in the firft affault, or ranfom afterward. This fhe deliver'd in the most bitter touch of forrow, that e'er I heard a virgin exclaim in; which I held it my duty fpeedily to acquaint you withal; fithence, in the lofs that may happen, it concerns you fomething to know
Count. You have difcharg'd this honeftly, keep it to yourfeif; many likelihoods inform me of this before, which hung fo tottering in the balance, that I could neither believe nor mifdoubt; pray you, leave me ; stall this in your bofom, and I thank you for your honest care; I will speak with you further anon.
Count. Ev'n fo it was with me, when I was young; If we are nature's, these are ours: this thorn
Doth to our rofe of youth rightly belong;
Our blood to us, this to our blood, is born;
It is the fhow and feal of nature's truth,
Love, no God, that would not extend bis Might only where Qualities were level, Queen of Virgins, that would fuffer ber poor Knight, &c.
'Tis evident to every fenfible Reader that fomething muft have flipt out here, by which the Meaning of the Context is render'd defective. The Steward is speaking in the very Words he overheard of the Young Lady; Fortune was no Goddess, she said, for one Reafon; Love, no God, for another ;what could She then more naturally fubjoin, than as I have amended in the Text?
Diana, no Queen of Virgins, that would fuffer her poor Knight to be furpriz'd without Rescue, &c.
For in Poetical Hiftory Diana was as well known to prefide over Chastity, as Cupid over Love, or Fortune over the Change or Regulation of our Circumstances..
By our remembrances of days foregone,
Such were our faults, or then we thought them none..
Hel. What is your pleasure, Madam?
Count. Helen, you know, I am a mother to you..
Count. Nay, a mother;
Why not a mother? when I faid a mother,
God's mercy! maiden, do's it curd thy blood,
Count. I fay, I am your mother.
The Count Roufillon cannot be my
I am from humble, he from honour'd, name;
No note upon my parents, his all noble.
Count. Nor I your mother?
Hel. You are my mother, Madam; 'would you were,
So I were not his fifter; can't no other,
Count. Yes, Helen, you might be my daughter-in-law ;;
My fear hath catch'd your fondnefs.-Now I fee (6)
That truth fhould be fufpected; speak, is't fo
If it be not, forfwear't; howe'er, I charge thee,
Hel. Good Madam, pardon me.
Count. Love you my fon?
Hel. Do not you love him, Madam?
Count. Go not about; my love hath in't a bond, Whereof the world takes note: come, come, disclose The state of your affection; for your paffions
Have to the full appeach'd.
-Now I fee
The myft'ry of your lovelinefs, and find
-] The Mystery of her Loveliness is beyond my Comprehenfion : The old Countess is faying nothing ironical, nothing taunting, or in Reproach, that this Word should find a place here; which it could not, unless farcaftically employ'd, and with fome Spleen. I dare warrant, the Poet meant, his old Lady should say no more than this: "I now find the Mystery of your creeping into "Corners, and weeping, and pining in fecret." For this Reafon I have amended the Text, Loneliness. The Steward, in the foregoing Scene, where he gives the Countefs Intelligence of Helen's Behaviour, fays;
Alone She was, and did communicate to herself her own Words to her own Ears.
Hel. Then, I confefs,
Here on my knee, before high heav'ns and you,
My friends were poor, but honeft; fo's my love;
Nor would I have him, 'till I do deserve him;
The fun that looks upon his worshipper,
Bel. Madam, I had.
Count. Wherefore? tell true.
Hel. I will tell truth; by Grace it felf, I fwear.
For general fov'reignty; and that he will'd me,