A line-by-line translation

The Two Gentlemen of Verona

The Two Gentlemen of Verona Translation Act 1, Scene 2

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Enter JULlA and LUCETTA

JULIA

But say, Lucetta, now we are alone,Wouldst thou then counsel me to fall in love?

JULIA

Now that we're alone, tell me, Lucetta: would you advise me to fall in love?

LUCETTA

Ay, madam, so you stumble not unheedfully.

LUCETTA

Yes, madam. Provided that you won't have sex carelessly.

JULIA

Of all the fair resort of gentlemen That every day with parle encounter me, In thy opinion which is worthiest love?

JULIA

Out of the group of  beautiful gentlemen that talk to me every day, which man do you think deserves my love the most?

LUCETTA

Please you repeat their names, I'll show my mindAccording to my shallow simple skill.

LUCETTA

Could you please repeat their names? I'll reveal what I think as my shallow, simple skill allows. 

JULIA

What think'st thou of the fair Sir Eglamour?

JULIA

What do you think of the handsome Sir Eglamour?

LUCETTA

As of a knight well-spoken, neat and fine;But, were I you, he never should be mine.

LUCETTA

For a knight, he's well-spoken, elegant, and refined. But if I were you, I'd never have him.

JULIA

What think'st thou of the rich Mercatio?

JULIA

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LUCETTA

Well of his wealth; but of himself, so so.

LUCETTA

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JULIA

What think'st thou of the gentle Proteus?

JULIA

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LUCETTA

Lord, Lord! To see what folly reigns in us!

LUCETTA

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JULIA

How now! What means this passion at his name?

JULIA

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LUCETTA

Pardon, dear madam: 'tis a passing shame That I, unworthy body as I am, Should censure thus on lovely gentlemen.

LUCETTA

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JULIA

Why not on Proteus, as of all the rest?

JULIA

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LUCETTA

Then thus: of many good I think him best.

LUCETTA

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JULIA

Your reason?

JULIA

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LUCETTA

I have no other, but a woman's reason;I think him so because I think him so.

LUCETTA

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JULIA

And wouldst thou have me cast my love on him?

JULIA

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LUCETTA

Ay, if you thought your love not cast away.

LUCETTA

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JULIA

Why he, of all the rest, hath never moved me.

JULIA

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LUCETTA

Yet he, of all the rest, I think, best loves ye.

LUCETTA

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JULIA

His little speaking shows his love but small.

JULIA

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LUCETTA

Fire that's closest kept burns most of all.

LUCETTA

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JULIA

They do not love that do not show their love.

JULIA

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LUCETTA

O, they love least that let men know their love.

LUCETTA

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JULIA

I would I knew his mind.

JULIA

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LUCETTA

Peruse this paper, madam.

LUCETTA

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JULIA

'To Julia.' Say, from whom?

JULIA

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LUCETTA

That the contents will show.

LUCETTA

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JULIA

Say, say, who gave it thee?

JULIA

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LUCETTA

Valentine's page; and sent, I think, from Proteus. He would have given it you; but I, being in the way, Did in your name receive it: pardon the fault I pray.

LUCETTA

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JULIA

Now, by my modesty, a goodly broker! Dare you presume to harbour wanton lines? To whisper and conspire against my youth? Now, trust me, 'tis an office of great worth And you an officer fit for the place. Or else return no more into my sight.

JULIA

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LUCETTA

To plead for love deserves more fee than hate.

LUCETTA

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JULIA

Will ye be gone?

JULIA

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LUCETTA

That you may ruminate.

LUCETTA

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Exit

JULIA

And yet I would I had o'erlooked the letter: It were a shame to call her back again And pray her to a fault for which I chid her. What a fool is she, that knows I am a maid, And would not force the letter to my view! Since maids, in modesty, say 'no' to that Which they would have the profferer construe 'ay.' Fie, fie, how wayward is this foolish love That, like a testy babe, will scratch the nurse And presently all humbled kiss the rod! How churlishly I chid Lucetta hence, When willingly I would have had her here! How angerly I taught my brow to frown, When inward joy enforced my heart to smile! My penance is to call Lucetta back And ask remission for my folly past. What ho! Lucetta!

JULIA

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Re-enter LUCETTA

LUCETTA

What would your ladyship?

LUCETTA

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JULIA

Is't near dinner-time?

JULIA

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LUCETTA

I would it were,That you might kill your stomach on your meatAnd not upon your maid.

LUCETTA

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JULIA

What is't that you took up so gingerly?

JULIA

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LUCETTA

Nothing.

LUCETTA

Lorem ip

JULIA

Why didst thou stoop, then?

JULIA

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LUCETTA

To take a paper up that I let fall.

LUCETTA

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JULIA

And is that paper nothing?

JULIA

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LUCETTA

Nothing concerning me.

LUCETTA

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JULIA

Then let it lie for those that it concerns.

JULIA

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LUCETTA

Madam, it will not lie where it concernsUnless it have a false interpeter.

LUCETTA

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JULIA

Some love of yours hath writ to you in rhyme.

JULIA

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LUCETTA

That I might sing it, madam, to a tune.Give me a note: your ladyship can set.

LUCETTA

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JULIA

As little by such toys as may be possible.Best sing it to the tune of 'Light o' love.'

JULIA

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LUCETTA

It is too heavy for so light a tune.

LUCETTA

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JULIA

Heavy! Belike it hath some burden then?

JULIA

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LUCETTA

Ay, and melodious were it, would you sing it.

LUCETTA

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JULIA

And why not you?

JULIA

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LUCETTA

I cannot reach so high.

LUCETTA

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JULIA

Let's see your song. How now, minion!

JULIA

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LUCETTA

Keep tune there still, so you will sing it out:And yet methinks I do not like this tune.

LUCETTA

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JULIA

You do not?

JULIA

Lorem ipsu

LUCETTA

No, madam; it is too sharp.

LUCETTA

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JULIA

You, minion, are too saucy.

JULIA

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LUCETTA

Nay, now you are too flat And mar the concord with too harsh a descant: There wanteth but a mean to fill your song.

LUCETTA

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JULIA

The mean is drown'd with your unruly bass.

JULIA

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LUCETTA

Indeed, I bid the base for Proteus.

LUCETTA

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JULIA

This babble shall not henceforth trouble me.Here is a coil with protestation!

JULIA

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Tears the letter

JULIA

Go get you gone, and let the papers lie:You would be fingering them, to anger me.

JULIA

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LUCETTA

She makes it strange; but she would be best pleasedTo be so anger'd with another letter.

LUCETTA

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Exit

JULIA

Nay, would I were so anger'd with the same! O hateful hands, to tear such loving words! Injurious wasps, to feed on such sweet honey And kill the bees that yield it with your stings! I'll kiss each several paper for amends. Look, here is writ 'kind Julia.' Unkind Julia! As in revenge of thy ingratitude, I throw thy name against the bruising stones, Trampling contemptuously on thy disdain. And here is writ 'love-wounded Proteus.' Poor wounded name! My bosom as a bed Shall lodge thee till thy wound be thoroughly heal'd; And thus I search it with a sovereign kiss. But twice or thrice was 'Proteus' written down. Be calm, good wind, blow not a word away Till I have found each letter in the letter, Except mine own name: that some whirlwind bear Unto a ragged fearful-hanging rock And throw it thence into the raging sea! Lo, here in one line is his name twice writ, 'Poor forlorn Proteus, passionate Proteus, To the sweet Julia:' that I'll tear away. And yet I will not, sith so prettily He couples it to his complaining names. Thus will I fold them one on another: Now kiss, embrace, contend, do what you will.

JULIA

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Re-enter LUCETTA

LUCETTA

Madam,Dinner is ready, and your father stays.

LUCETTA

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JULIA

Well, let us go.

JULIA

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LUCETTA

What, shall these papers lie like tell-tales here?

LUCETTA

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JULIA

If you respect them, best to take them up.

JULIA

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LUCETTA

Nay, I was taken up for laying them down:Yet here they shall not lie, for catching cold.

LUCETTA

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JULIA

I see you have a month's mind to them.

JULIA

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LUCETTA

Ay, madam, you may say what sights you see;I see things too, although you judge I wink.

LUCETTA

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JULIA

Come, come; will't please you go?

JULIA

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Exeunt

The two gentlemen of verona
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Nina romancikova
About the Translator: Nina Romancikova

Nina Romancikova is from Slovakia but her love of literature and theater has brought her to the UK and she has been living and studying there for the past six years. She graduated with a degree in English Literature and Language at University of Glasgow in 2016. Nina is now finishing her Masters in Shakespeare Studies at King's College London and is currently working as a Research Intern at Shakespeare's Globe.