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Philip and Weller hugging

Welcome to my web site, now under development for more than twenty years.   
-- Philip Weller, November 13, 1941 - February 1, 2021
Dr. Weller, an Eastern Washington University professor of English and Shakespearean scholar for more than 50 years.



Romeus and Juliet: Lines 2337-2402



  The nurse departed once, the chamber door shut close,
Assuréd that no living wight her doing might disclose,
She pouréd forth into the vial of the friar
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Water, out of a silver ewer that on the board stood by her.
The sleepy mixture made, fair Juliet doth it hide
Under her bolster soft, and so unto her bed she hied:
Where divers novel thoughts arise within her head,
And she is so environed about with deadly dread,
That what before she had resolved undoubtedly
That same she calleth into doubt; and Iying doubtfully,
Whilst honest love did strive with dread of deadly pain,
With hands y-wrung, and weeping eyes, thus gan she to complain:
"What, is there any one, beneath the heavens high,
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So much unfortunate as I? so much past hope as I?
What, am I not myself, of all that yet were born,
The deepest drenchéd in despair, and most in Fortune's scorn?
For lo, the world for me hath nothing else to find,
Beside mishap and wretchedness and anguish of the mind;
Since that the cruel cause of my unhappiness
Hath put me to this sudden plunge, and brought to such distress,
As, to the end I may my name and conscience save,
I must devour the mixéd drink that by me here I have,
Whose working and whose force as yet I do not know."
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And of this piteous plaint began another doubt to grow:
"What do I know," quoth she, "if that this powder shall
Sooner or later than it should, or else, not work at all?
And then my craft descried as open as the day,
The people's tale and laughing-stock shall I remain for aye."
"And what know I," quoth she, "if serpents odious,
And other beasts and worms that are of nature venomous,
That wonted are to lurk in dark caves underground,
And commonly, as I have heard, in dead men's tombs are found,
Shall harm me, yea or nay, where I shall lie as dead? --
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Or how shall I that alway have in so fresh air been bred,
Endure the lothsome stink of such an heapéd store
Of carcases not yet consumed, and bones that long before
Intombéd were, where I my sleeping-place shall have,
Where all my ancestors do rest, my kindred's common grave?
Shall not the friar and my Romeus, when they come,
Find me, if I awake before, y-stifled in the tomb?"
  And whilst she in these thoughts doth dwell somewhat too long,
The force of her imagining anon did wax so strong,
That she surmised she saw, out of the hollow vault,
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A grisly thing to look upon, the carcase of Tybalt;
Right in the selfsame sort that she few days before
Had seen him in his blood embrued, to death eke wounded sore.
And then when she again within herself had weighed
That quick she should be buried there, and by his side be laid,
All comfortless, for she shall living fere have none,
But many a rotten carcase, and full many a naked bone;
Her dainty tender parts 'gan shiver all for dread,
Her golden hairs did stand upright upon her chillish head.
Then presséd with the fear that she there livéd in,
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A sweat as cold as mountain ice pierced through her slender skin,
That with the moisture hath wet every part of hers:
And more besides, she vainly thinks, whilst vainly thus she fears,
A thousand bodies dead have compassed her about,
And lest they will dismember her she greatly stands in doubt.
But when she felt her strength began to wear away,
By little and little, and in her heart her fear increaséd aye,
Dreading that weakness might, or foolish cowardice,
Hinder the execution of the purposed enterprise,
As she had frantic been, in haste the glass she caught,
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And up she drank the mixture quite, withouten farther thought.
Then on her breast she crossed her arms long and small,
And so, her senses failing her, into a trance did fall.