Therefore know, I have earned of Don John a thousand ducats
Therefore know, I have earned of Don John
a thousand ducats.
Is it possible that any villainy should be so dear?
Thou shouldst rather ask if it were possible
any villainy should be so rich. For when rich
villains have need of poor ones, poor ones may
make what price they will.
All this I see, and I see that the fashion
wears out more apparel than the man
I wonder at it.
That shows thou art unconfirmed. Thou knowest
that the fashion of a doublet, or a hat, or a cloak,
is nothing to a man.
Yes, it is apparel.
I mean the fashion.
Yes, the fashion is the fashion.
Tush, I may as well say the fool’s the fool.
But seest thou not what a deformed thief this
First Watchman, aside
I know that Deformed. He has been a vile thief this
seven year. He goes up and down like a gentleman.
I remember his name.
Didst thou not hear somebody?
No, ’twas the vane on the house.
Seest thou not, I say, what a deformed thief
this fashion is, how giddily he turns about all the
hot bloods between fourteen and five-and-thirty,
sometimes fashioning them like Pharaoh’s soldiers
in the reechy painting, sometimes like god Bel’s
priests in the old church window, sometimes like
the shaven Hercules in the smirched worm-eaten
tapestry, where his codpiece seems as massy as his club?
All this I see, and I see that the fashion wears
out more apparel than the man. But art not thou
thyself giddy with the fashion too, that thou hast
shifted out of thy tale into telling me of the fashion?
Not so, neither. But know that I have tonight
wooed Margaret, the Lady Hero’s gentlewoman,
by the name of Hero. She leans me out at
her mistress’ chamber window, bids me a thousand
times goodnight. I tell this tale vilely. I should first
tell thee how the Prince, Claudio, and my master,
planted and placed and possessed by my master
Don John, saw afar off in the orchard this amiable
And thought they Margaret was Hero?
Two of them did, the Prince and Claudio,
but the devil my master knew she was Margaret;
and partly by his oaths, which first possessed them,
partly by the dark night, which did deceive them,
but chiefly by my villainy, which did confirm any
slander that Don John had made, away went Claudio
enraged, swore he would meet her as he was
appointed next morning at the temple, and there,
before the whole congregation, shame her with
what he saw o’ernight and send her home again
without a husband.
We charge you in the Prince’s name stand!
Call up the right Master Constable.
Second Watchman exits.
We have here recovered the most dangerous piece
of lechery that ever was known in the commonwealth.