Книга Alls Wel that ends Well. Содержание - SCENE 2.

of nature to preserve virginity. Loss of virginity is rational

increase; and there was never virgin got till virginity was first

lost. That you were made of is metal to make virgins. Virginity

by being once lost may be ten times found; by being ever kept, it

is ever lost. 'Tis too cold a companion; away with't.

HELENA. I will stand for 't a little, though therefore I die a


PAROLLES. There's little can be said in 't; 'tis against the rule

of nature. To speak on the part of virginity is to accuse your

mothers; which is most infallible disobedience. He that hangs

himself is a virgin; virginity murders itself, and should be

buried in highways, out of all sanctified limit, as a desperate

offendress against nature. Virginity breeds mites, much like a

cheese; consumes itself to the very paring, and so dies with

feeding his own stomach. Besides, virginity is peevish, proud,

idle, made of self-love, which is the most inhibited sin in the

canon. Keep it not; you cannot choose but lose by't. Out with't.

Within ten year it will make itself ten, which is a goodly 

increase; and the principal itself not much the worse. Away


HELENA. How might one do, sir, to lose it to her own liking?

PAROLLES. Let me see. Marry, ill to like him that ne'er it likes.

'Tis a commodity will lose the gloss with lying; the longer kept,

the less worth. Off with't while 'tis vendible; answer the time

of request. Virginity, like an old courtier, wears her cap out of

fashion, richly suited but unsuitable; just like the brooch and

the toothpick, which wear not now. Your date is better in your

pie and your porridge than in your cheek. And your virginity,

your old virginity, is like one of our French wither'd pears: it

looks ill, it eats drily; marry, 'tis a wither'd pear; it was

formerly better; marry, yet 'tis a wither'd pear. Will you

anything with it?

HELENA. Not my virginity yet.

There shall your master have a thousand loves,

A mother, and a mistress, and a friend,

A phoenix, captain, and an enemy,

A guide, a goddess, and a sovereign,

A counsellor, a traitress, and a dear; 

His humble ambition, proud humility,

His jarring concord, and his discord dulcet,

His faith, his sweet disaster; with a world

Of pretty, fond, adoptious christendoms

That blinking Cupid gossips. Now shall he-

I know not what he shall. God send him well!

The court's a learning-place, and he is one-

PAROLLES. What one, i' faith?

HELENA. That I wish well. 'Tis pity-

PAROLLES. What's pity?

HELENA. That wishing well had not a body in't

Which might be felt; that we, the poorer born,

Whose baser stars do shut us up in wishes,

Might with effects of them follow our friends

And show what we alone must think, which never

Returns us thanks.

Enter PAGE

PAGE. Monsieur Parolles, my lord calls for you. Exit PAGE 

PAROLLES. Little Helen, farewell; if I can remember thee, I will

think of thee at court.

HELENA. Monsieur Parolles, you were born under a charitable star.

PAROLLES. Under Mars, I.

HELENA. I especially think, under Mars.

PAROLLES. Why under Man?

HELENA. The wars hath so kept you under that you must needs be born

under Mars.

PAROLLES. When he was predominant.

HELENA. When he was retrograde, I think, rather.

PAROLLES. Why think you so?

HELENA. You go so much backward when you fight.

PAROLLES. That's for advantage.

HELENA. So is running away, when fear proposes the safety: but the

composition that your valour and fear makes in you is a virtue of

a good wing, and I like the wear well.

PAROLLES. I am so full of business I cannot answer thee acutely. I

will return perfect courtier; in the which my instruction shall

serve to naturalize thee, so thou wilt be capable of a courtier's

counsel, and understand what advice shall thrust upon thee; else 

thou diest in thine unthankfulness, and thine ignorance makes

thee away. Farewell. When thou hast leisure, say thy prayers;

when thou hast none, remember thy friends. Get thee a good

husband and use him as he uses thee. So, farewell.


HELENA. Our remedies oft in ourselves do lie,

Which we ascribe to heaven. The fated sky

Gives us free scope; only doth backward pull

Our slow designs when we ourselves are dull.

What power is it which mounts my love so high,

That makes me see, and cannot feed mine eye?

The mightiest space in fortune nature brings

To join like likes, and kiss like native things.

Impossible be strange attempts to those

That weigh their pains in sense, and do suppose

What hath been cannot be. Who ever strove

To show her merit that did miss her love?

The King's disease-my project may deceive me,

But my intents are fix'd, and will not leave me. Exit


Paris. The KING'S palace

Flourish of cornets. Enter the KING OF FRANCE, with letters,

and divers ATTENDANTS

KING. The Florentines and Senoys are by th' ears;

Have fought with equal fortune, and continue

A braving war.

FIRST LORD. So 'tis reported, sir.

KING. Nay, 'tis most credible. We here receive it,

A certainty, vouch'd from our cousin Austria,

With caution, that the Florentine will move us

For speedy aid; wherein our dearest friend

Prejudicates the business, and would seem

To have us make denial.

FIRST LORD. His love and wisdom,

Approv'd so to your Majesty, may plead

For amplest credence.

KING. He hath arm'd our answer,

And Florence is denied before he comes;

Yet, for our gentlemen that mean to see 

The Tuscan service, freely have they leave

To stand on either part.

SECOND LORD. It well may serve

A nursery to our gentry, who are sick

For breathing and exploit.

KING. What's he comes here?


FIRST LORD. It is the Count Rousillon, my good lord,

Young Bertram.

KING. Youth, thou bear'st thy father's face;

Frank nature, rather curious than in haste,

Hath well compos'd thee. Thy father's moral parts

Mayst thou inherit too! Welcome to Paris.

BERTRAM. My thanks and duty are your Majesty's.

KING. I would I had that corporal soundness now,

As when thy father and myself in friendship

First tried our soldiership. He did look far

Into the service of the time, and was 

Discipled of the bravest. He lasted long;

But on us both did haggish age steal on,

And wore us out of act. It much repairs me

To talk of your good father. In his youth

He had the wit which I can well observe

To-day in our young lords; but they may jest

Till their own scorn return to them unnoted

Ere they can hide their levity in honour.

So like a courtier, contempt nor bitterness

Were in his pride or sharpness; if they were,

His equal had awak'd them; and his honour,

Clock to itself, knew the true minute when

Exception bid him speak, and at this time

His tongue obey'd his hand. Who were below him

He us'd as creatures of another place;

And bow'd his eminent top to their low ranks,

Making them proud of his humility

In their poor praise he humbled. Such a man

Might be a copy to these younger times;

Which, followed well, would demonstrate them now 

But goers backward.

BERTRAM. His good remembrance, sir,

Lies richer in your thoughts than on his tomb;

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