The Tempest: Act 2, Scene 1

           GONZALO, ADRIAN, FRANCISCO, and others.

  1   Beseech you, sir, be merry; you have cause,
  2   So have we all, of joy; for our escape
  3   Is much beyond our loss. Our hint of woe
  4   Is common; every day some sailor's wife,
  5   The masters of some merchant and the merchant
  6   Have just our theme of woe; but for the miracle,
  7   I mean our preservation, few in millions
  8   Can speak like us: then wisely, good sir, weigh
  9   Our sorrow with our comfort.

  9                                                 Prithee, peace.

 10   He receives comfort like cold porridge.

 11   The visitor will not give him o'er so.

 12   Look he's winding up the watch of his wit;
 13   by and by it will strike.

 14   Sir,—

 15   One: tell.

 16   When every grief is entertain'd that's offer'd,
 17   Comes to the entertainer—

 18   A dollar.

 19   Dolour comes to him, indeed: you
 20   have spoken truer than you purposed.

 21   You have taken it wiselier than I meant you
 22   should.

 23   Therefore, my lord,—

 24   Fie, what a spendthrift is he of his tongue!

 25   I prithee, spare.

 26   Well, I have done: but yet,—

 27   He will be talking.

 28   Which, of he or Adrian, for a good
 29   wager, first begins to crow?

 30   The old cock.

 31   The cockerel.

 32   Done. The wager?

 33   A laughter.

 34   A match!

 35   Though this island seem to be desert,—

 36   Ha, ha, ha!
 37   So, you're paid.

 38   Uninhabitable and almost inaccessible,—

 39   Yet,—

 40   Yet,—

 41   He could not miss't.

 42   It must needs be of subtle, tender and delicate
 43   temperance.

 44   Temperance was a delicate wench.

 45   Ay, and a subtle; as he most learnedly
 46   delivered.

 47   The air breathes upon us here most sweetly.

 48   As if it had lungs and rotten ones.

 49   Or as 'twere perfumed by a fen.

 50   Here is everything advantageous to life.

 51   True; save means to live.

 52   Of that there's none, or little.

 53   How lush and lusty the grass looks! how
 54   green!

 55   The ground indeed is tawny.

 56   With an eye of green in't.

 57   He misses not much.

 58   No; he doth but mistake the truth totally.

 59   But the rarity of it is,—which is indeed almost
 60   beyond credit,—

 61   As many vouched rarities are.

 62   That our garments, being, as they were, drenched in
 63   the sea, hold notwithstanding their freshness and
 64   glosses, being rather new-dyed than stained with
 65   salt water.

 66   If but one of his pockets could speak, would it not
 67   say he lies?

 68   Ay, or very falsely pocket up his report

 69   Methinks our garments are now as fresh as when we
 70   put them on first in Afric, at the marriage of
 71   the king's fair daughter Claribel to the King of
 72   Tunis.

 73   'Twas a sweet marriage, and we prosper well
 74   in our return.

 75   Tunis was never graced before with such a paragon to
 76   their queen.

 77   Not since widow Dido's time.

 78   Widow! a pox o' that! How came that widow in?
 79   widow Dido!

 80   What if he had said 'widower AEneas' too? Good Lord,
 81   how you take it!

 82   'Widow Dido' said you? you make me study of that:
 83   she was of Carthage, not of Tunis.

 84   This Tunis, sir, was Carthage.

 85   Carthage?

 86   I assure you, Carthage.

 87   His word is more than the miraculous harp; he hath
 88   raised the wall and houses too.

 89   What impossible matter will he make easy
 90   next?

 91   I think he will carry this island home in his pocket
 92   and give it his son for an apple.

 93   And, sowing the kernels of it in the sea, bring
 94   forth more islands.

 95   Ay.

 96   Why, in good time.

 97   Sir, we were talking that our garments seem now
 98   as fresh as when we were at Tunis at the marriage
 99   of your daughter, who is now queen.

100   And the rarest that e'er came there.

101   Bate, I beseech you, widow Dido.

102   O, widow Dido! ay, widow Dido.

103   Is not, sir, my doublet as fresh as the first day I
104   wore it? I mean, in a sort.

105   That sort was well fished for.

106   When I wore it at your daughter's marriage?

107   You cram these words into mine ears against
108   The stomach of my sense. Would I had never
109   Married my daughter there! for, coming thence,
110   My son is lost and, in my rate, she too,
111   Who is so far from Italy removed
112   I ne'er again shall see her. O thou mine heir
113   Of Naples and of Milan, what strange fish
114   Hath made his meal on thee?

114                                             Sir, he may live:
115   I saw him beat the surges under him,
116   And ride upon their backs; he trod the water,
117   Whose enmity he flung aside, and breasted
118   The surge most swoln that met him; his bold head
119   'Bove the contentious waves he kept, and oar'd
120   Himself with his good arms in lusty stroke
121   To the shore, that o'er his wave-worn basis bow'd,
122   As stooping to relieve him: I not doubt
123   He came alive to land.

123                                     No, no, he's gone.

124   Sir, you may thank yourself for this great loss,
125   That would not bless our Europe with your daughter,
126   But rather lose her to an African;
127   Where she at least is banish'd from your eye,
128   Who hath cause to wet the grief on't.

128                                                           Prithee, peace.

129   You were kneel'd to and importuned otherwise
130   By all of us, and the fair soul herself
131   Weigh'd between loathness and obedience, at
132   Which end o' the beam should bow. We have lost your son
133   I fear, for ever: Milan and Naples have
134   More widows in them of this business' making
135   Than we bring men to comfort them:
136   The fault's your own.

136                                   So is the dear'st o' the loss.

137   My lord Sebastian,
138   The truth you speak doth lack some gentleness
139   And time to speak it in: you rub the sore,
140   When you should bring the plaster.

140                                                           Very well.

141   And most chirurgeonly.

142   It is foul weather in us all, good sir,
143   When you are cloudy.

143                                 Foul weather?

143                                                       Very foul.

144   Had I plantation of this isle, my lord,—

145   He'ld sow't with nettle-seed.

145                                               Or docks, or mallows.

146   And were the king on't, what would I do?

147   'Scape being drunk for want of wine.

148   I' the commonwealth I would by contraries
149   Execute all things; for no kind of traffic
150   Would I admit; no name of magistrate;
151   Letters should not be known; riches, poverty,
152   And use of service, none; contract, succession,
153   Bourn, bound of land, tilth, vineyard, none;
154   No use of metal, corn, or wine, or oil;
155   No occupation; all men idle, all;
156   And women too, but innocent and pure;
157   No sovereignty;—

157                           Yet he would be king on't.

158   The latter end of his commonwealth forgets the
159   beginning.

160   All things in common nature should produce
161   Without sweat or endeavour: treason, felony,
162   Sword, pike, knife, gun, or need of any engine,
163   Would I not have; but nature should bring forth,
164   Of its own kind, all foison, all abundance,
165   To feed my innocent people.

166   No marrying 'mong his subjects?

167   None, man; all idle: whores and knaves.

168   I would with such perfection govern, sir,
169   To excel the golden age.

169                                         God save his majesty!

170   Long live Gonzalo!

170                                 And,—do you mark me, sir?

171   Prithee, no more: thou dost talk nothing to me.

172   I do well believe your highness; and
173   did it to minister occasion to these gentlemen,
174   who are of such sensible and nimble lungs that
175   they always use to laugh at nothing.

176   'Twas you we laughed at.

177   Who in this kind of merry fooling am nothing
178   to you: so you may continue and laugh at
179   nothing still.

180   What a blow was there given!

181   An it had not fallen flat-long.

182   You are gentlemen of brave metal; you would lift
183   the moon out of her sphere, if she would continue
184   in it five weeks without changing.

           Enter ARIEL, [invisible], playing solemn music.

185   We would so, and then go a bat-fowling.

186   Nay, good my lord, be not angry.

187   No, I warrant you; I will not adventure
188   my discretion so weakly. Will you laugh
189   me asleep, for I am very heavy?

190   Go sleep, and hear us.

           [All sleep except Alonso, Sebastian, and Antonio.]

191   What, all so soon asleep! I wish mine eyes
192   Would, with themselves, shut up my thoughts: I find
193   They are inclined to do so.

193                                             Please you, sir,
194   Do not omit the heavy offer of it:
195   It seldom visits sorrow; when it doth,
196   It is a comforter.

196                               We two, my lord,
197   Will guard your person while you take your rest,
198   And watch your safety.

198                                       Thank you. Wondrous heavy.

           [Alonso sleeps. Exit Ariel.]

199   What a strange drowsiness possesses them!

200   It is the quality o' the climate.

200                                                     Why
201   Doth it not then our eyelids sink? I find not
202   Myself disposed to sleep.

202                                             Nor I; my spirits are nimble.
203   They fell together all, as by consent;
204   They dropp'd, as by a thunder-stroke. What might,
205   Worthy Sebastian? O, what might?—No more:—
206   And yet me thinks I see it in thy face,
207   What thou shouldst be: the occasion speaks thee, and
208   My strong imagination sees a crown
209   Dropping upon thy head.

209                                         What, art thou waking?

210   Do you not hear me speak?

210                                         I do; and surely
211   It is a sleepy language and thou speak'st
212   Out of thy sleep. What is it thou didst say?
213   This is a strange repose, to be asleep
214   With eyes wide open; standing, speaking, moving,
215   And yet so fast asleep.

215                                       Noble Sebastian,
216   Thou let'st thy fortune sleep—die, rather; wink'st
217   Whiles thou art waking.

217                                         Thou dost snore distinctly;
218   There's meaning in thy snores.

219   I am more serious than my custom: you
220   Must be so too, if heed me; which to do
221   Trebles thee o'er.

221                               Well, I am standing water.

222   I'll teach you how to flow.

222                                           Do so: to ebb
223   Hereditary sloth instructs me.

223                                                       O,
224   If you but knew how you the purpose cherish
225   Whiles thus you mock it! how, in stripping it,
226   You more invest it! Ebbing men, indeed,
227   Most often do so near the bottom run
228   By their own fear or sloth.

228                                             Prithee, say on:
229   The setting of thine eye and cheek proclaim
230   A matter from thee, and a birth indeed
231   Which throes thee much to yield.

231                                                       Thus, sir:
232   Although this lord of weak remembrance, this,
233   Who shall be of as little memory
234   When he is earth'd, hath here almost persuade,—
235   For he's a spirit of persuasion, only
236   Professes to persuade,—the king his son's alive,
237   'Tis as impossible that he's undrown'd
238   As he that sleeps here swims.

238                                                   I have no hope
239   That he's undrown'd.

239                                 O, out of that 'no hope'
240   What great hope have you! no hope that way is
241   Another way so high a hope that even
242   Ambition cannot pierce a wink beyond,
243   But doubt discovery there. Will you grant with me
244   That Ferdinand is drown'd?

244                                             He's gone.

244                                                         Then, tell me,
245   Who's the next heir of Naples?

245                                                 Claribel.

246   She that is queen of Tunis; she that dwells
247   Ten leagues beyond man's life; she that from Naples
248   Can have no note, unless the sun were post—
249   The man i' the moon's too slow—till new-born chins
250   Be rough and razorable; she that—from whom?
251   We all were sea-swallow'd, though some cast again,
252   And by that destiny to perform an act
253   Whereof what's past is prologue, what to come
254   In yours and my discharge.

254                                             What stuff is this! how say you?
255   'Tis true, my brother's daughter's queen of Tunis;
256   So is she heir of Naples; 'twixt which regions
257   There is some space.

257                                   A space whose every cubit
258   Seems to cry out, 'How shall that Claribel
259   Measure us back to Naples? Keep in Tunis,
260   And let Sebastian wake.' Say, this were death
261   That now hath seized them; why, they were no worse
262   Than now they are. There be that can rule Naples
263   As well as he that sleeps; lords that can prate
264   As amply and unnecessarily
265   As this Gonzalo; I myself could make
266   A chough of as deep chat. O, that you bore
267   The mind that I do! what a sleep were this
268   For your advancement! Do you understand me?

269   Methinks I do.

269                         And how does your content
270   Tender your own good fortune?

270                                                   I remember
271   You did supplant your brother Prospero.

271                                                                   True:
272   And look how well my garments sit upon me;
273   Much feater than before: my brother's servants
274   Were then my fellows; now they are my men.

275   But, for your conscience?

276   Ay, sir; where lies that? if 'twere a kibe,
277   'Twould put me to my slipper: but I feel not
278   This deity in my bosom: twenty consciences,
279   That stand 'twixt me and Milan, candied be they
280   And melt ere they molest! Here lies your brother,
281   No better than the earth he lies upon,
282   If he were that which now he's like, that's dead;
283   Whom I, with this obedient steel, three inches of it,
284   Can lay to bed for ever; whiles you, doing thus,
285   To the perpetual wink for aye might put
286   This ancient morsel, this Sir Prudence, who
287   Should not upbraid our course. For all the rest,
288   They'll take suggestion as a cat laps milk;
289   They'll tell the clock to any business that
290   We say befits the hour.

290                                       Thy case, dear friend,
291   Shall be my precedent; as thou got'st Milan,
292   I'll come by Naples. Draw thy sword: one stroke
293   Shall free thee from the tribute which thou payest;
294   And I the king shall love thee.

294                                                   Draw together;
295   And when I rear my hand, do you the like,
296   To fall it on Gonzalo.

296                                   O, but one word.

           [They talk apart.]

           Enter ARIEL [invisible], with music and song.

297   My master through his art foresees the danger
298   That you, his friend, are in; and sends me forth—
299   For else his project dies—to keep them living.

           Sings in Gonzalo's ear.

300   While you here do snoring lie,
301   Open-eyed conspiracy
302   His time doth take.
303   If of life you keep a care,
304   Shake off slumber, and beware:
305   Awake, awake!

306   Then let us both be sudden.


306                                             Now, good angels
307   Preserve the king.

           [Wakes Alonso.]

308   Why, how now? ho, awake! Why are you drawn?
309   Wherefore this ghastly looking?

309                                                         What's the matter?

310   Whiles we stood here securing your repose,
311   Even now, we heard a hollow burst of bellowing
312   Like bulls, or rather lions: did't not wake you?
313   It struck mine ear most terribly.

313                                                         I heard nothing.

314   O, 'twas a din to fright a monster's ear,
315   To make an earthquake! sure, it was the roar
316   Of a whole herd of lions.

316                                         Heard you this, Gonzalo?

317   Upon mine honour, sir, I heard a humming,
318   And that a strange one too, which did awake me:
319   I shaked you, sir, and cried: as mine eyes open'd,
320   I saw their weapons drawn: there was a noise,
321   That's verily. 'Tis best we stand upon our guard,
322   Or that we quit this place; let's draw our weapons.

323   Lead off this ground; and let's make further search
324   For my poor son.

324                           Heavens keep him from these beasts!
325   For he is, sure, i' the island.

325                                           Lead away.

326   Prospero my lord shall know what I have done:
327   So, king, go safely on to seek thy son.