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Duke. Hapless Ægeon, whom the fates have

To bear the extremity of dire mishap!
Now, trust me, were it not against our laws,
Against my crown, my oath, my dignity,
Which princes, would they, may not disannul,
My soul should sue as advocate for thee.
But, though thou art adjudged to the death,
And passed sentence may not be recall’d,
But to our honour's great disparagement,
Yet will I favour thee in what I can:
Therefore, merchant, I'll limit thee this day,
To seek thy help by beneficial help:
Try all the friends thou hast in Ephesus;
Beg thou, or borrow, to make up the sum,
And live; if not, then thou art doom'd to die:
Gaoler, take him to thy custody.

Gaol. I will, my lord.

Æge. Hopeless, and helpless, doth Ægeon wend, But to procrastinate his lifeless end. [Exeunt.



A publick Place.

Enter AntiPHOLUS and Dromio of Syracuse,

and a Merchant. Mer. Therefore, give out, you are of Epidamnum, Lest that your goods too soon be confiscate. This very day, a Syracusan merchant Is apprehended for arrival here; And, not being able to buy out his life, According to the statute of the town, Dies ere the weary sun set in the west. There is your money that I had to keep.

- wend,] i. e. go. An obsolete word.

Ant. S. Go bear it to the Centaur, where we host, And stay there, Dromio, till I come to thee. Within this hour it will be dinner-time: Till that, I'll view the manners of the town, Peruse the traders, gaze upon the buildings, , And then return, and sleep within mine inn; For with long travel I am stiff and weary.

Get thee away.


Dro. S. Many a man would take you at your word, And go indeed, having so good a mean.

[Exit Dro. S.
Ant. S. A trusty villain," sir; that very oft,
When I am dull with care and melancholy,
Lightens my humour with his merry jests.
What, will you walk with me about the town,
And then go to my inn, and dine with me?

Mer. I am invited, sir, to certain merchants,
Of whom I hope to make much benefit;
I crave your pardon. Soon, at five o'clock,

you, I'll meet with you upon the mart,
And afterwards consort you till bed-time;
My present business calls me from you now.
Ant. S. Farewell till then: I will


lose myself, And wander up and down, to view the city. Mer. Sir, I commend you to your own content. ,

[Exit Merchant. Ant. S. He that commends me to mine own con

Commends me to the thing I cannot get.
I to the world am like a drop of water,
That in the ocean seeks another drop;
Who, falling there to find his fellow forth,
Unseen, inquisitive, confounds himself:
So I, to find a mother, and a brother,
In quest of them, unhappy, lose myself.

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* A trusty villain,) i. e. servant.


Enter DROMIO of Ephesus. Here comes the almanack of my true date.What now? How chance, thou art return'd so soon? Dro. E. Return'd so soon! rather approach'd too

late: The capon burns, the pig falls from the spit; The clock hath strucken twelve upon the bell, mistress made it one upon my

cheek: She is so hot, because the meat is cold; The meat is cold, because you come not home; . You come not home, because you have no stomach; You have no stomach, having broke your fast; But we, that know what 'tis to fast and

pray, Are penitent for your default to-day. Ant. S. Stop in your wind, sir; tell me this, I

pray; Where have you left the money that I gave you? Dro. E. 0,--six-pence, that I had o'Wednesday

last, To pay the saddler for my mistress' crupper;The saddler had it, sir, I kept it not.

Ant. S. I am not in a sportive humour now: Tell me, and dally not, where is the money? We being strangers here, how dar’st thou trust So great a charge from thine own custody?

Dro. E. I pray you, jest, sir, as you sit at dinner: I from my mistress come to you in post; If I return, I shall be post indeed; For she will score your fault upon my pate. Methinks, your maw, like mine, should be your.




I shall be post indeed; For she will score your fault upon my pate.] Perhaps, before writing was a general accomplishment, a kind of rough reckoning, concerning wares issued out of a shop, was kept by chalk or notches on a post, till it could be entered on the books of a trader.

And strike you home without a messenger.
Ant. S. Come, Dromio, come, these jests are out

of season;
Reserve them till a merrier hour than this:
Where is the gold I gave in charge to thee?

I Dro. E. To me, sir? why you gave no gold to


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Ant. $. Come on, sir knave; have done your

foolishness, And tell me, how thou hast dispos'd thy charge. Dro. E. My charge was but to fetch you

from the mart Home to your house, the Phenix, sir, to dinner; My mistress, and her sister, stay for you.

Ant. S. Now, as I am a christian, answer me, In what safe place you have bestow'd my money; Or I shall break that merry sconce of yours, That stands on tricks when I am undispos’d: Where is the thousand marks thou hadst of me? Dro. E. I have some marks of yours upon my

pate, Some of my mistress' marks upon my shoulders, But not a thousand marks between you both.-If I should pay your worship those again, Perchance, you will not bear them patiently. Ant. S. Thy mistress' marks! what mistress, slave,

hast thou? Dro. E. Your worship's wife, my mistress at the

Phenix; She that doth fast, till you come home to dinner, And prays, that you will hie you home to dinner. Ant. S. What, wilt thou flout me thus unto my

face, Being forbid? There, take you that, sir knave.


that merry sconce of yours,] Sconce is head. VOL. IV.



Dro. E. What mean you, sir? for God's sake,

hold your hands; Nay, an you will not, sir, I'll take



[Exit Dro. E. Ant. S. Upon my life, by some device or other, The villain is o'er-ra is full o

all my money.
They say, this town is full of cozenage,
As, nimble jugglers, that deceive the eye,
Dark-working sorcerers, that change the mind,
Soul-killing witches, that deform the body;
Disguised cheaters, prating mountebanks,
And many such like liberties of sin :
If it prove so, I will be gone the sooner.

, I'll to the Centaur, to go seek this slave; I greatly fear, my money is not safe. [Exit.


SCENE I. A publick Place.

Enter ADRIANA and LUCIANA, Adr. Neither my husband, nor the slave return’d, That in such haste I sent to seek his master! Sure, Luciana, it is two o'clock.

Luc. Perhaps, some merchant hath invited him, And from the mart he's somewhere gone to dinner. Good sister, let us dine, and never fret:

o'er-raught - That is, over-reached. They say, this town is full of cozenage;] This was the character the ancients give of it. Hence 'Έφεσια ά λεξιφαρμακα was proverbial amongst them. Thus Menander uses it, and 'Emerich roape puta, in the same sense.

WARBURTON. 1 liberties of sin:] By liberties of sin, Shakspeare perhaps means licensed offenders, such as mountebanks, fortune-tellers, &c. who cheat with impunity.

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