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Come, cousin Angelo, In this I’ll be impartial

Duke
Come, cousin Angelo,
In this I’ll be impartial. Be you judge
Of your own cause.  Duke and Angelo are seated.
 Enter Mariana, veiled.
Is this the witness, friar?
First, let her show her face, and after speak.
Mariana
Pardon, my lord, I will not show my face
Until my husband bid me.

As there comes light from heaven and words from breath,
As there is sense in truth and truth in virtue,
I am affianced this man’s wife as strongly
As words could make up vows.

Duke
What, are you married?
Mariana
No, my lord.
Duke
Are you a maid?
Mariana
No, my lord.
Duke
A widow, then?
Mariana
Neither, my lord.
Duke
Why you are nothing, then, neither maid, widow,
nor wife?
Lucio
My lord, she may be a punk, for many of them
are neither maid, widow, nor wife.
Duke
Silence that fellow. I would he had some cause
to prattle for himself.
Lucio
Well, my lord.
Mariana
My lord, I do confess I ne’er was married,
And I confess besides I am no maid.
I have known my husband, yet my husband
Knows not that ever he knew me.
Lucio
He was drunk, then, my lord; it can be no better.
Duke
For the benefit of silence, would thou wert so too.
Lucio
Well, my lord.
Duke
This is no witness for Lord Angelo.
Mariana
Now I come to ’t, my lord.
She that accuses him of fornication
In selfsame manner doth accuse my husband,
And charges him, my lord, with such a time
When, I’ll depose, I had him in mine arms
With all th’ effect of love.
Angelo
Charges she more than me?
Mariana
Not that I know.
Duke
No? You say your husband.
Mariana
Why, just, my lord, and that is Angelo,
Who thinks he knows that he ne’er knew my body,
But knows, he thinks, that he knows Isabel’s.
Angelo
This is a strange abuse. Let’s see thy face.
Mariana
My husband bids me. Now I will unmask.
 She removes her veil.
This is that face, thou cruel Angelo,
Which once thou swor’st was worth the looking on.
This is the hand which, with a vowed contract,
Was fastbelocked in thine. This is the body
That took away the match from Isabel
And did supply thee at thy garden house
In her imagined person.
Duke, to Angelo
Know you this woman?
Lucio
Carnally, she says.
Duke
Sirrah, no more.
Lucio
Enough, my lord.
Angelo
My lord, I must confess I know this woman,
And five years since there was some speech of marriage
Betwixt myself and her, which was broke off,
Partly for that her promisèd proportions
Came short of composition, but in chief
For that her reputation was disvalued
In levity. Since which time of five years
I never spake with her, saw her, nor heard from her,
Upon my faith and honor.
Mariana, kneeling, to Duke
Noble prince,
As there comes light from heaven and words from breath,
As there is sense in truth and truth in virtue,
I am affianced this man’s wife as strongly
As words could make up vows. And, my good lord,
But Tuesday night last gone in ’s garden house
He knew me as a wife. As this is true,
Let me in safety raise me from my knees,
Or else forever be confixèd here
A marble monument.
Angelo
I did but smile till now.
Now, good my lord, give me the scope of justice.
My patience here is touched. I do perceive
These poor informal women are no more
But instruments of some more mightier member
That sets them on. Let me have way, my lord,
To find this practice out.
Duke
Ay, with my heart,
And punish them to your height of pleasure.—
Thou foolish friar, and thou pernicious woman,
Compact with her that’s gone, think’st thou thy oaths,
Though they would swear down each particular saint,
Were testimonies against his worth and credit
That’s sealed in approbation?—You, Lord Escalus,
Sit with my cousin; lend him your kind pains
To find out this abuse, whence ’tis derived.
 The Duke rises. Escalus is seated.
There is another friar that set them on.
Let him be sent for.
Friar Peter
Would he were here, my lord, for he indeed
Hath set the women on to this complaint;
Your provost knows the place where he abides,
And he may fetch him.
Duke, to Provost
Go, do it instantly.
 Provost exits.

Source:
Act 5
Scene 1
Line 190

Source Type:

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