A line-by-line translation

Measure for Measure

Measure for Measure Translation Act 1, Scene 4

Line Map Clear Line Map Add

Enter ISABELLA and FRANCISCA

ISABELLA

And have you nuns no farther privileges?

ISABELLA

And you nuns don't have any other privileges? 

FRANCISCA

Are not these large enough?

FRANCISCA

Are these not enough?

ISABELLA

Yes, truly; I speak not as desiring more; But rather wishing a more strict restraint Upon the sisterhood, the votarists of Saint Clare.

ISABELLA

Yes, indeed they are. I'm not saying that I want anything more, I'm actually wishing for stricter rules here in the sisterhood of the nuns of Saint Clare.

LUCIO

[Within] Ho! Peace be in this place!

LUCIO

[Offstage] Hey! Peace be in this place!

ISABELLA

Who's that which calls?

ISABELLA

Who's that who's calling?

FRANCISCA

It is a man's voice. Gentle Isabella, Turn you the key, and know his business of him; You may, I may not; you are yet unsworn. When you have vow'd, you must not speak with men But in the presence of the prioress: Then, if you speak, you must not show your face, Or, if you show your face, you must not speak. He calls again; I pray you, answer him.

FRANCISCA

It's a man's voice. Dear Isabella: you turn the key and find out what he wants. You can; I can't. You haven't taken your vows yet. Once you've taken your vows, you can't speak with men unless the prioress is there. Then, if you speak, you can't show your face. Or if you show your face, you can't speak. He's calling again; please, answer him.

Exit

ISABELLA

Peace and prosperity! Who is't that calls?

ISABELLA

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consec

Enter LUCIO

LUCIO

Hail, virgin, if you be, as those cheek-roses Proclaim you are no less! Can you so stead me As bring me to the sight of Isabella, A novice of this place and the fair sister To her unhappy brother Claudio?

LUCIO

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incidLorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna

ISABELLA

Why "her unhappy brother?" let me ask, The rather for I now must make you know I am that Isabella and his sister.

ISABELLA

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adLorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed

LUCIO

Gentle and fair, your brother kindly greets you:Not to be weary with you, he's in prison.

LUCIO

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna

ISABELLA

Woe me! for what?

ISABELLA

Lorem ipsum dolo

LUCIO

For that which, if myself might be his judge,He should receive his punishment in thanks:He hath got his friend with child.

LUCIO

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna

ISABELLA

Sir, make me not your story.

ISABELLA

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet,

LUCIO

It is true. I would not—though 'tis my familiar sin With maids to seem the lapwing and to jest, Tongue far from heart—play with all virgins so: I hold you as a thing ensky'd and sainted. By your renouncement an immortal spirit, And to be talk'd with in sincerity, As with a saint.

LUCIO

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetLorem ipsuLorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididuntLorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consecteturLorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et

ISABELLA

You do blaspheme the good in mocking me.

ISABELLA

Lorem iLorem ipsumLorem ipsum dolor sit amet, con

LUCIO

Do not believe it. Fewness and truth, 'tis thus: Your brother and his lover have embraced: As those that feed grow full, as blossoming time That from the seedness the bare fallow brings To teeming foison, even so her plenteous womb Expresseth his full tilth and husbandry.

LUCIO

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunLorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore etLorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing eLorem ipsL

ISABELLA

Some one with child by him? My cousin Juliet?

ISABELLA

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, Lorem Lorem ip

LUCIO

Is she your cousin?

LUCIO

Lorem ipsum dolor s

ISABELLA

Adoptedly; as school-maids change their namesBy vain though apt affection.

ISABELLA

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et do

LUCIO

She it is.

LUCIO

Lorem ipsum do

ISABELLA

O, let him marry her.

ISABELLA

Lorem ipsum dolor sit

LUCIO

This is the point. The duke is very strangely gone from hence; Bore many gentlemen, myself being one, In hand and hope of action: but we do learn By those that know the very nerves of state, His givings-out were of an infinite distance From his true-meant design. Upon his place, And with full line of his authority, Governs Lord Angelo; a man whose blood Is very snow-broth; one who never feels The wanton stings and motions of the sense, But doth rebate and blunt his natural edge With profits of the mind, study and fast. He—to give fear to use and liberty, Which have for long run by the hideous law, As mice by lions—hath pick'd out an act, Under whose heavy sense your brother's life Falls into forfeit: he arrests him on it; And follows close the rigour of the statute, To make him an example. All hope is gone, Unless you have the grace by your fair prayer To soften Angelo: and that's my pith of business 'Twixt you and your poor brother.

LUCIO

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed dLorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiLorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aLorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. ULorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit,Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitationLorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exerLorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exe

ISABELLA

Doth he so seek his life?

ISABELLA

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do

LUCIO

Has censured himAlready; and, as I hear, the provost hathA warrant for his execution.

LUCIO

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut l

ISABELLA

Alas! what poor ability's in meTo do him good?

ISABELLA

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adip

LUCIO

Assay the power you have.

LUCIO

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet,

ISABELLA

My power? Alas, I doubt—

ISABELLA

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet

LUCIO

Our doubts are traitors And make us lose the good we oft might win By fearing to attempt. Go to Lord Angelo, And let him learn to know, when maidens sue, Men give like gods; but when they weep and kneel, All their petitions are as freely theirs As they themselves would owe them.

LUCIO

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore etLorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adiLorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud

ISABELLA

I'll see what I can do.

ISABELLA

Lorem ipsum dolor sit a

LUCIO

But speedily.

LUCIO

Lorem ipsum dolor sit

ISABELLA

I will about it straight; No longer staying but to give the mother Notice of my affair. I humbly thank you: Commend me to my brother: soon at night I'll send him certain word of my success.

ISABELLA

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunLorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna

LUCIO

I take my leave of you.

LUCIO

Lorem ipsum dolor sit

ISABELLA

Good sir, adieu.

ISABELLA

Lorem ipsum dolor s

Exeunt

Measure for measure
Join LitCharts A+ and get the entire Measure for Measure Translation as a printable PDF.
LitCharts A+ members also get exclusive access to:
  • Downloadable translations of every Shakespeare play and sonnet
  • Downloads of 514 LitCharts Lit Guides
  • Explanations and citation info for 13,578 quotes covering 514 books
  • Teacher Editions for every Lit Guide
  • PDFs defining 131 key Lit Terms
Bailey sincox
About the Translator: Bailey Sincox

Bailey Sincox is a PhD student in English at Harvard University, where she researches the theatre of Shakespeare and his contemporaries. Her teaching experience includes accessible online courses with edX on Hamlet and The Merchant of Venice. She holds a Master's from the University of Oxford and a Bachelor's from Duke University.