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Joy and all comfort in your sacred breast

First Lord
Joy and all comfort in your sacred breast.
Second Lord
And keep your mind till you return to us
Peaceful and comfortable.

’Tis time to fear when tyrants seems to kiss;

Peace, peace, and give experience tongue.
They do abuse the King that flatter him,
For flattery is the bellows blows up sin;
The thing the which is flattered, but a spark
To which that wind gives heat and stronger glowing;
Whereas reproof, obedient and in order,
Fits kings as they are men, for they may err.
When Signior Sooth here does proclaim peace,
He flatters you, makes war upon your life.
 He kneels.
Prince, pardon me, or strike me, if you please.
I cannot be much lower than my knees.
All leave us else; but let your cares o’erlook
What shipping and what lading’s in our haven,
And then return to us. The Lords exit. Helicanus,
Thou hast moved us. What seest thou in our looks?
An angry brow, dread lord.
If there be such a dart in princes’ frowns,
How durst thy tongue move anger to our face?
How dares the plants look up to heaven,
From whence they have their nourishment?
Thou knowest I have power to take thy life from thee.
I have ground the ax myself;
Do but you strike the blow.
Rise, prithee rise.  Helicanus rises.
Sit down. Thou art no flatterer.
I thank thee for ’t; and heaven forbid
That kings should let their ears hear their faults hid.
Fit counselor and servant for a prince,
Who by thy wisdom makes a prince thy servant,
What wouldst thou have me do?
To bear with patience such griefs
As you yourself do lay upon yourself.
Thou speak’st like a physician, Helicanus,
That ministers a potion unto me
That thou wouldst tremble to receive thyself.
Attend me, then: I went to Antioch,
Where, as thou know’st, against the face of death
I sought the purchase of a glorious beauty
From whence an issue I might propagate,
Are arms to princes and bring joys to subjects.
Her face was to mine eye beyond all wonder,
The rest—hark in thine ear—as black as incest,
Which by my knowledge found, the sinful father
Seemed not to strike, but smooth. But thou know’st this:
’Tis time to fear when tyrants seems to kiss;
Which fear so grew in me I hither fled
Under the covering of a careful night,
Who seemed my good protector; and, being here,
Bethought me what was past, what might succeed.
I knew him tyrannous, and tyrants’ fears
Decrease not but grow faster than the years;
And should he doubt, as no doubt he doth,
That I should open to the list’ning air
How many worthy princes’ bloods were shed
To keep his bed of blackness unlaid ope,
To lop that doubt he’ll fill this land with arms,
And make pretense of wrong that I have done him;
When all, for mine—if I may call ’t—offense,
Must feel war’s blow, who spares not innocence;
Which love to all—of which thyself art one,
Who now reproved’st me for ’t—
Alas, sir!

Act 1
Scene 2
Line 37

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