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Adr. Patience, unmov'd, no marvel though she
They can be meek, that have no other cause.5
Imc. Well, I will marry one day, but to try;— Here comes your man, now is your husband nigh.
Enter Dromio of Ephesus.
Adr. Say, is your tardy master now at hand?
Dro. E. Nay, he is at two hands with me, and that my two ears can witness.
Adr. Say, didst thou speak with him? know'st thou his mind?
Dro. E. Ay, ay, he told his mind upon mine ear: Beshrew his hand, I scarce could understand it.
Luc. Spake he so doubtfully, thou couldst not feel his meaning?
Dro. E. Nay, he struck so plainly, I could too well feel his blows; and withal so doubtfully, that I could scarce understand them.8
4 though she pause;] To pause is to rest, to be in quiet.
5 They can be meek, that have no other cause.] That is, who have no cause to be otherwise.
6 With urging helpless patience —] By exhorting me to patience, which affords no help.
7 fool-begg'd—] She seems to mean, by fool-begg'd patience, that patience which is so near to idiotical simplicity, that your next relation would take advantage from it to represent you as a fool, and beg the guardianship of your fortune.
s that I could scarce understand them.] i. e. that I could
scarce stand under them. This quibble, poor as it is, seems to have been a favourite with Shakspeare.
Adr. But say, I pr'ythee, is he coming home? It seems, he hath great care to please his wife.
Dro. E. Why, mistress, sure my master is hornmad.
Adr. Horn-mad, thou villain?
Dro. E. I mean not cuckold-mad; but, sure,
he's stark mad:
When I desir'd him to come home to dinner,
Luc. Quoth who?
Dro. E. Quoth my master:
/ know, quoth he, no house, no wife, no mistress;—
Adr. Go back again, thou slave, and fetch him home.
Dro. E. Go back again, and be new beaten
home? For God's sake, send some other messenger.
Adr. Back, slave, or I will break thy pate across.
Dro. E. And he will bless that cross with other
beating: Between you I shall have a holy head.
Adr. Hence, prating peasant; fetch thy master home.
Dro. E. Am I so round with you, as you with me,9
* Am I so round tiilh you, as you with me,] He plays upon the word round, which signifies spherical, applied to himself, and unrestrained, or free in speech or action spoken of his mistress.
That like a football you do spurn me thus?
Luc. Fye, how impatience lowreth in your face!
Adr. His company must do his minions grace, Whilst I at home starve for a merry look. Hath homely age the alluring beauty took From my poor cheek? then he hath wasted it; Are my discourses dull f barren my wit? If voluble and sharp discourse be marr'd, Unkindness blunts it, more than marble hard. Do their gay vestments his affections bait? That's not my fault, he's master of my state: What ruins are in me, that can be found By him not ruin'd? then is he the ground Of my defeatures:2 My decayed fair3 A sunny look of his would soon repair: But, too unruly deer, he breaks the pale, And feeds from home; poor I am but his stale.4
Luc. Self-harming jealousy!—fye, beat it hence.
Adr. Unfeeling fools can with such wrongs dispense. I know his eye doth homage otherwhere; Or else, what lets it but he would be here? Sister, you know, he promis'd me a chain;— Would that alone alone he would detain,
1 case me in leather.] Still alluding to a football, the bladder of which is always covered with leather.
* Of my defeatures:] By defeatures is here meant alteration of features. At the end of this play the same word is used with a somewhat different signification.
1 My decayed fair —] Fair for fairness.
4 poor I am but his stale.] i. e. his pretence.