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The Two Gentlemen of Verona

The Two Gentlemen of Verona Translation Act 4, Scene 4

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Enter LANCE, with his his Dog

LANCE

When a man's servant shall play the cur with him, look you, it goes hard: one that I brought up of a puppy; one that I saved from drowning, when three or four of his blind brothers and sisters went to it. I have taught him, even as one would say precisely, 'thus I would teach a dog.' I was sent to deliver him as a present to Mistress Silvia from my master; and I came no sooner into the dining-chamber but he steps me to her trencher and steals her capon's leg: O, 'tis a foul thing when a cur cannot keep himself in all companies! I would have, as one should say, one that takes upon him to be a dog indeed, to be, as it were, a dog at all things. If I had not had more wit than he, to take a fault upon me that he did, I think verily he had been hanged for't; sure as I live, he had suffered for't; you shall judge. He thrusts me himself into the company of three or four gentlemanlike dogs under the duke's table: he had not been there—bless the mark!—a pissing while, but all the chamber smelt him. 'Out with the dog!' says one: 'What cur is that?' says another: 'Whip him out' says the third: 'Hang him up' says the duke. I, having been acquainted with the smell before, knew it was Crab, and goes me to the fellow that whips the dogs: 'Friend,' quoth I, 'you mean to whip the dog?' 'Ay, marry, do I,' quoth he. 'You do him the more wrong,' quoth I; ''twas I did the thing you wot of.' He makes me no more ado, but whips me out of the chamber. How many masters would do this for his servant? Nay, I'll be sworn, I have sat in the stocks for puddings he hath stolen, otherwise he had been executed; I have stood on the pillory for geese he hath killed, otherwise he had suffered for't. Thou thinkest not of this now. Nay, I remember the trick you served me when I took my leave of Madam Silvia: did not I bid thee still mark me and do as I do? When didst thou see me heave up my leg and make water against a gentlewoman's farthingale? Didst thou ever see me do such a trick?

LANCE

When a master's servant behaves like a dog to him, it is tough. I brought this one up from a puppy; I saved this one from drowning, when three or four of his blind brothers and sisters drowned. I have taught him, even as one would say precisely, "I would teach a dog like this." I was sent to deliver him as a present from my master to Mistress Silvia, and as soon as I came into the dining room, he comes to her plate and steals her chicken leg. Oh, it's a horrible thing when a dog can't behave himself in different kinds of company! But, as they really should say, I happen to have a dog that is a dog indeed—a dog in everything he does. If I didn't have more wisdom than he does—to plead guilty for his wrongdoing—I really think he would have been hanged for it. For as sure as I live, he's suffered for it, as you'll see. He thrusts me himself into the company of three or four gentlemanly dogs under the Duke's table. He had not been there (pardon my language) as long as the time it takes to piss—and everybody in the room smelled him. "Out with the dog!" someone says. "What dog is that?" someone else says. "Whip him!" a third says. "Hang him up" says the Duke. Since I have known the smell before, I knew it was Crab. So I go to the man that whips the dogs: "Friend," I say, "are you going to whip the dog?" "Yes, I am" he says. "You'll make things even worse for him if you do," I say. "I was the one who did the thing you know about." He makes no more fuss about it, but whips me out of the room. How many masters would do this for their servants? No, I swear, I have sat in the stocks for sausages he has stolen. Otherwise, he would have been executed. I have also been punished for geese he has killed. Otherwise, he would have suffered for it. Don't think about this now. No, I remember the trick you played on me when I left Madam Silvia. Didn't I ask you to always pay attention to me, just like I pay attention to you? When did you see me raise up my leg and urinate onto a gentlewoman's skirt? Have you ever seen me do such a trick?

Enter PROTEUS and JULIA

PROTEUS

Sebastian is thy name? I like thee wellAnd will employ thee in some service presently.

PROTEUS

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JULIA

In what you please: I'll do what I can.

JULIA

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PROTEUS

I hope thou wilt.

PROTEUS

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PROTEUS

[to LANCE] How now, you whoreson peasant!Where have you been these two days loitering?

PROTEUS

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LANCE

Marry, sir, I carried Mistress Silvia the dog you bade me.

LANCE

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PROTEUS

And what says she to my little jewel?

PROTEUS

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LANCE

Marry, she says your dog was a cur, and tells youcurrish thanks is good enough for such a present.

LANCE

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PROTEUS

But she received my dog?

PROTEUS

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LANCE

No, indeed, did she not: here have I brought himback again.

LANCE

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PROTEUS

What, didst thou offer her this from me?

PROTEUS

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LANCE

Ay, sir: the other squirrel was stolen from me by the hangman boys in the market-place: and then I offered her mine own, who is a dog as big as ten of yours, and therefore the gift the greater.

LANCE

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PROTEUS

Go get thee hence, and find my dog again, Or ne'er return again into my sight. Away, I say! Stay'st thou to vex me here?

PROTEUS

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Exit LANCE

PROTEUS

A slave, that still an end turns me to shame! Sebastian, I have entertained thee, Partly that I have need of such a youth That can with some discretion do my business, For 'tis no trusting to yond foolish lout, But chiefly for thy face and thy behavior, Which, if my augury deceive me not, Witness good bringing up, fortune and truth: Therefore know thou, for this I entertain thee. Go presently and take this ring with thee, Deliver it to Madam Silvia: She loved me well deliver'd it to me.

PROTEUS

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JULIA

It seems you loved not her, to leave her token.She is dead, belike?

JULIA

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PROTEUS

Not so; I think she lives.

PROTEUS

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JULIA

Alas!

JULIA

Lor

PROTEUS

Why dost thou cry 'alas'?

PROTEUS

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JULIA

I cannot chooseBut pity her.

JULIA

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PROTEUS

Wherefore shouldst thou pity her?

PROTEUS

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JULIA

Because methinks that she loved you as well As you do love your lady Silvia: She dreams of him that has forgot her love; You dote on her that cares not for your love. 'Tis pity love should be so contrary; And thinking of it makes me cry 'alas!'

JULIA

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PROTEUS

Well, give her that ring and therewithal This letter. That's her chamber. Tell my lady I claim the promise for her heavenly picture. Your message done, hie home unto my chamber, Where thou shalt find me, sad and solitary.

PROTEUS

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Exit

JULIA

How many women would do such a message? Alas, poor Proteus! Thou hast entertain'd A fox to be the shepherd of thy lambs. Alas, poor fool! Why do I pity him That with his very heart despiseth me? Because he loves her, he despiseth me; Because I love him I must pity him. This ring I gave him when he parted from me, To bind him to remember my good will; And now am I, unhappy messenger, To plead for that which I would not obtain, To carry that which I would have refused, To praise his faith which I would have dispraised. I am my master's true-confirmed love; But cannot be true servant to my master, Unless I prove false traitor to myself. Yet will I woo for him, but yet so coldly As, heaven it knows, I would not have him speed.

JULIA

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Enter SILVIA, attended

JULIA

Gentlewoman, good day! I pray you, be my meanTo bring me where to speak with Madam Silvia.

JULIA

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SILVIA

What would you with her, if that I be she?

SILVIA

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JULIA

If you be she, I do entreat your patienceTo hear me speak the message I am sent on.

JULIA

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SILVIA

From whom?

SILVIA

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JULIA

From my master, Sir Proteus, madam.

JULIA

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SILVIA

O, he sends you for a picture.

SILVIA

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JULIA

Ay, madam.

JULIA

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SILVIA

Ursula, bring my picture here. Go give your master this: tell him from me, One Julia, that his changing thoughts forget, Would better fit his chamber than this shadow.

SILVIA

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JULIA

Madam, please you peruse this letter.— Pardon me, madam; I have unadvised Deliver'd you a paper that I should not: This is the letter to your ladyship.

JULIA

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SILVIA

I pray thee, let me look on that again.

SILVIA

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JULIA

It may not be; good madam, pardon me.

JULIA

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SILVIA

There, hold! I will not look upon your master's lines: I know they are stuff'd with protestations And full of new-found oaths; which he will break As easily as I do tear his paper.

SILVIA

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JULIA

Madam, he sends your ladyship this ring.

JULIA

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SILVIA

The more shame for him that he sends it me; For I have heard him say a thousand times His Julia gave it him at his departure. Though his false finger have profaned the ring, Mine shall not do his Julia so much wrong.

SILVIA

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JULIA

She thanks you.

JULIA

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SILVIA

What say'st thou?

SILVIA

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JULIA

I thank you, madam, that you tender her.Poor gentlewoman! My master wrongs her much.

JULIA

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SILVIA

Dost thou know her?

SILVIA

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JULIA

Almost as well as I do know myself:To think upon her woes I do protestThat I have wept a hundred several times.

JULIA

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SILVIA

Belike she thinks that Proteus hath forsook her.

SILVIA

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JULIA

I think she doth; and that's her cause of sorrow.

JULIA

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SILVIA

Is she not passing fair?

SILVIA

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JULIA

She hath been fairer, madam, than she is: When she did think my master loved her well, She, in my judgment, was as fair as you: But since she did neglect her looking-glass And threw her sun-expelling mask away, The air hath starved the roses in her cheeks And pinch'd the lily-tincture of her face, That now she is become as black as I.

JULIA

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SILVIA

How tall was she?

SILVIA

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JULIA

About my stature; for at Pentecost, When all our pageants of delight were play'd, Our youth got me to play the woman's part, And I was trimm'd in Madam Julia's gown, Which served me as fit, by all men's judgments, As if the garment had been made for me: Therefore I know she is about my height. And at that time I made her weep agood, For I did play a lamentable part: Madam, 'twas Ariadne passioning For Theseus' perjury and unjust flight; Which I so lively acted with my tears That my poor mistress, moved therewithal, Wept bitterly; and would I might be dead If I in thought felt not her very sorrow!

JULIA

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SILVIA

She is beholding to thee, gentle youth. Alas, poor lady, desolate and left! I weep myself to think upon thy words. Here, youth, there is my purse; I give thee this For thy sweet mistress' sake, because thou lovest her. Farewell.

SILVIA

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Exit SILVIA, with attendants

JULIA

And she shall thank you for't, if e'er you know her. A virtuous gentlewoman, mild and beautiful I hope my master's suit will be but cold, Since she respects my mistress' love so much. Alas, how love can trifle with itself! Here is her picture: let me see; I think, If I had such a tire, this face of mine Were full as lovely as is this of hers: And yet the painter flatter'd her a little, Unless I flatter with myself too much. Her hair is auburn, mine is perfect yellow: If that be all the difference in his love, I'll get me such a colour'd periwig. Her eyes are grey as glass, and so are mine: Ay, but her forehead's low, and mine's as high. What should it be that he respects in her But I can make respective in myself, If this fond Love were not a blinded god? Come, shadow, come and take this shadow up, For 'tis thy rival. O thou senseless form, Thou shalt be worshipp'd, kiss'd, loved and adored! And, were there sense in his idolatry, My substance should be statue in thy stead. I'll use thee kindly for thy mistress' sake, That used me so; or else, by Jove I vow, I should have scratch'd out your unseeing eyes To make my master out of love with thee!

JULIA

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Exit

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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.