Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Twelfth Night

OLIVIAI have sent after him: he says he’ll come;
How shall I feast him? what bestow of him?
For youth is bought more oft than begg’d or borrow’d.
I speak too loud. 5
Where is Malvolio? he is sad and civil,
And suits well for a servant with my fortunes:
Where is Malvolio?
MARIAHe’s coming, madam; but in very strange manner. He
is, sure, possessed, madam. 10
OLIVIAWhy, what’s the matter? does he rave?
MARIANo. madam, he does nothing but smile: your
ladyship were best to have some guard about you, if
he come; for, sure, the man is tainted in’s wits.
OLIVIAGo call him hither. 15
I am as mad as he,
If sad and merry madness equal be.
Re-enter MARIA, with MALVOLIO
How now, Malvolio!
MALVOLIOSweet lady, ho, ho.
OLIVIASmilest thou? 20
I sent for thee upon a sad occasion.
MALVOLIOSad, lady! I could be sad: this does make some
obstruction in the blood, this cross-gartering; but
what of that? if it please the eye of one, it is
with me as the very true sonnet is, ‘Please one, and 25
please all.’
OLIVIAWhy, how dost thou, man? what is the matter with thee?
MALVOLIONot black in my mind, though yellow in my legs. It
did come to his hands, and commands shall be
executed: I think we do know the sweet Roman hand. 30
OLIVIAWilt thou go to bed, Malvolio?
MALVOLIOTo bed! ay, sweet-heart, and I’ll come to thee.
OLIVIAGod comfort thee! Why dost thou smile so and kiss
thy hand so oft?
MARIAHow do you, Malvolio? 35
MALVOLIOAt your request! yes; nightingales answer daws.
MARIAWhy appear you with this ridiculous boldness before my lady?
MALVOLIO‘Be not afraid of greatness:’ ’twas well writ.
OLIVIAWhat meanest thou by that, Malvolio?
MALVOLIO‘Some are born great,’– 40
MALVOLIO‘Some achieve greatness,’–
OLIVIAWhat sayest thou?
MALVOLIO‘And some have greatness thrust upon them.’
OLIVIAHeaven restore thee! 45
MALVOLIO‘Remember who commended thy yellow stockings,’–
OLIVIAThy yellow stockings!
MALVOLIO‘And wished to see thee cross-gartered.’
MALVOLIO‘Go to thou art made, if thou desirest to be so;’– 50
OLIVIAAm I made?
MALVOLIO‘If not, let me see thee a servant still.’
OLIVIAWhy, this is very midsummer madness.
Enter Servant
ServantMadam, the young gentleman of the Count Orsino’s is
returned: I could hardly entreat him back: he 55
attends your ladyship’s pleasure.
OLIVIAI’ll come to him.
Exit Servant
Good Maria, let this fellow be looked to. Where’s
my cousin Toby? Let some of my people have a special
care of him: I would not have him miscarry for the 60
half of my dowry.
MALVOLIOO, ho! do you come near me now? no worse man than
Sir Toby to look to me! This concurs directly with
the letter: she sends him on purpose, that I may
appear stubborn to him; for she incites me to that 65
in the letter. ‘Cast thy humble slough,’ says she;
‘be opposite with a kinsman, surly with servants;
let thy tongue tang with arguments of state; put
thyself into the trick of singularity;’ and
consequently sets down the manner how; as, a sad 70
face, a reverend carriage, a slow tongue, in the
habit of some sir of note, and so forth. I have
limed her; but it is Jove’s doing, and Jove make me
thankful! And when she went away now, ‘Let this
fellow be looked to:’ fellow! not Malvolio, nor 75
after my degree, but fellow. Why, every thing
adheres together, that no dram of a scruple, no
scruple of a scruple, no obstacle, no incredulous
or unsafe circumstance–What can be said? Nothing
that can be can come between me and the full 80
prospect of my hopes. Well, Jove, not I, is the
doer of this, and he is to be thanked.
SIR TOBY BELCHWhich way is he, in the name of sanctity? If all
the devils of hell be drawn in little, and Legion
himself possessed him, yet I’ll speak to him. 85
FABIANHere he is, here he is. How is’t with you, sir?
how is’t with you, man?
MALVOLIOGo off; I discard you: let me enjoy my private: go
MARIALo, how hollow the fiend speaks within him! did not 90
I tell you? Sir Toby, my lady prays you to have a
care of him.
MALVOLIOAh, ha! does she so?
SIR TOBY BELCHGo to, go to; peace, peace; we must deal gently
with him: let me alone. How do you, Malvolio? how 95
is’t with you? What, man! defy the devil:
consider, he’s an enemy to mankind.
MALVOLIODo you know what you say?
MARIALa you, an you speak ill of the devil, how he takes
it at heart! Pray God, he be not bewitched! 100
FABIANCarry his water to the wise woman.
MARIAMarry, and it shall be done to-morrow morning, if I
live. My lady would not lose him for more than I’ll say.
MALVOLIOHow now, mistress!
MARIAO Lord! 105
SIR TOBY BELCHPrithee, hold thy peace; this is not the way: do
you not see you move him? let me alone with him.
FABIANNo way but gentleness; gently, gently: the fiend is
rough, and will not be roughly used.
SIR TOBY BELCHWhy, how now, my bawcock! how dost thou, chuck? 110
SIR TOBY BELCHAy, Biddy, come with me. What, man! ’tis not for
gravity to play at cherry-pit with Satan: hang
him, foul collier!
MARIAGet him to say his prayers, good Sir Toby, get him to pray. 115
MALVOLIOMy prayers, minx!
MARIANo, I warrant you, he will not hear of godliness.
MALVOLIOGo, hang yourselves all! you are idle shallow
things: I am not of your element: you shall know
more hereafter. 120
SIR TOBY BELCHIs’t possible?
FABIANIf this were played upon a stage now, I could
condemn it as an improbable fiction.
SIR TOBY BELCHHis very genius hath taken the infection of the device, man.
MARIANay, pursue him now, lest the device take air and taint. 125
FABIANWhy, we shall make him mad indeed.
MARIAThe house will be the quieter.
SIR TOBY BELCHCome, we’ll have him in a dark room and bound. My
niece is already in the belief that he’s mad: we
may carry it thus, for our pleasure and his penance, 130
till our very pastime, tired out of breath, prompt
us to have mercy on him: at which time we will
bring the device to the bar and crown thee for a
finder of madmen. But see, but see.
FABIANMore matter for a May morning. 135
SIR ANDREWHere’s the challenge, read it: warrant there’s
vinegar and pepper in’t.
FABIANIs’t so saucy?
SIR ANDREWAy, is’t, I warrant him: do but read.
SIR TOBY BELCHGive me. 140
‘Youth, whatsoever thou art, thou art but a scurvy fellow.’
FABIANGood, and valiant.
why I do call thee so, for I will show thee no reason for’t.’
FABIANA good note; that keeps you from the blow of the law.
sight she uses thee kindly: but thou liest in thy 145
throat; that is not the matter I challenge thee for.’
FABIANVery brief, and to exceeding good sense–less.
be thy chance to kill me,’–
FABIANStill you keep o’ the windy side of the law: good. 150
one of our souls! He may have mercy upon mine; but
my hope is better, and so look to thyself. Thy
friend, as thou usest him, and thy sworn enemy,
If this letter move him not, his legs cannot: 155
I’ll give’t him.
MARIAYou may have very fit occasion for’t: he is now in
some commerce with my lady, and will by and by depart.
SIR TOBY BELCHGo, Sir Andrew: scout me for him at the corner the
orchard like a bum-baily: so soon as ever thou seest 160
him, draw; and, as thou drawest swear horrible; for
it comes to pass oft that a terrible oath, with a
swaggering accent sharply twanged off, gives manhood
more approbation than ever proof itself would have
earned him. Away! 165
SIR ANDREWNay, let me alone for swearing.
SIR TOBY BELCHNow will not I deliver his letter: for the behavior
of the young gentleman gives him out to be of good
capacity and breeding; his employment between his
lord and my niece confirms no less: therefore this 170
letter, being so excellently ignorant, will breed no
terror in the youth: he will find it comes from a
clodpole. But, sir, I will deliver his challenge by
word of mouth; set upon Aguecheek a notable report
of valour; and drive the gentleman, as I know his 175
youth will aptly receive it, into a most hideous
opinion of his rage, skill, fury and impetuosity.
This will so fright them both that they will kill
one another by the look, like cockatrices.
Re-enter OLIVIA, with VIOLA
FABIANHere he comes with your niece: give them way till 180
he take leave, and presently after him.
SIR TOBY BELCHI will meditate the while upon some horrid message
for a challenge.
OLIVIAI have said too much unto a heart of stone
And laid mine honour too unchary out: 185
There’s something in me that reproves my fault;
But such a headstrong potent fault it is,
That it but mocks reproof.
VIOLAWith the same ‘havior that your passion bears
Goes on my master’s grief. 190
OLIVIAHere, wear this jewel for me, ’tis my picture;
Refuse it not; it hath no tongue to vex you;
And I beseech you come again to-morrow.
What shall you ask of me that I’ll deny,
That honour saved may upon asking give? 195
VIOLANothing but this; your true love for my master.
OLIVIAHow with mine honour may I give him that
Which I have given to you?
VIOLAI will acquit you.
OLIVIAWell, come again to-morrow: fare thee well: 200
A fiend like thee might bear my soul to hell.
SIR TOBY BELCHGentleman, God save thee.
VIOLAAnd you, sir.
SIR TOBY BELCHThat defence thou hast, betake thee to’t: of what
nature the wrongs are thou hast done him, I know 205
not; but thy intercepter, full of despite, bloody as
the hunter, attends thee at the orchard-end:
dismount thy tuck, be yare in thy preparation, for
thy assailant is quick, skilful and deadly.
VIOLAYou mistake, sir; I am sure no man hath any quarrel 210
to me: my remembrance is very free and clear from
any image of offence done to any man.
SIR TOBY BELCHYou’ll find it otherwise, I assure you: therefore,
if you hold your life at any price, betake you to
your guard; for your opposite hath in him what 215
youth, strength, skill and wrath can furnish man withal.
VIOLAI pray you, sir, what is he?
SIR TOBY BELCHHe is knight, dubbed with unhatched rapier and on
carpet consideration; but he is a devil in private
brawl: souls and bodies hath he divorced three; and 220
his incensement at this moment is so implacable,
that satisfaction can be none but by pangs of death
and sepulchre. Hob, nob, is his word; give’t or take’t.
VIOLAI will return again into the house and desire some
conduct of the lady. I am no fighter. I have heard 225
of some kind of men that put quarrels purposely on
others, to taste their valour: belike this is a man
of that quirk.
SIR TOBY BELCHSir, no; his indignation derives itself out of a
very competent injury: therefore, get you on and 230
give him his desire. Back you shall not to the
house, unless you undertake that with me which with
as much safety you might answer him: therefore, on,
or strip your sword stark naked; for meddle you
must, that’s certain, or forswear to wear iron about you. 235
VIOLAThis is as uncivil as strange. I beseech you, do me
this courteous office, as to know of the knight what
my offence to him is: it is something of my
negligence, nothing of my purpose.
SIR TOBY BELCHI will do so. Signior Fabian, stay you by this 240
gentleman till my return.
VIOLAPray you, sir, do you know of this matter?
FABIANI know the knight is incensed against you, even to a
mortal arbitrement; but nothing of the circumstance more.
VIOLAI beseech you, what manner of man is he? 245
FABIANNothing of that wonderful promise, to read him by
his form, as you are like to find him in the proof
of his valour. He is, indeed, sir, the most skilful,
bloody and fatal opposite that you could possibly
have found in any part of Illyria. Will you walk 250
towards him? I will make your peace with him if I
VIOLAI shall be much bound to you for’t: I am one that
had rather go with sir priest than sir knight: I
care not who knows so much of my mettle. 255
SIR TOBY BELCHWhy, man, he’s a very devil; I have not seen such a
firago. I had a pass with him, rapier, scabbard and
all, and he gives me the stuck in with such a mortal
motion, that it is inevitable; and on the answer, he
pays you as surely as your feet hit the ground they 260
step on. They say he has been fencer to the Sophy.
SIR ANDREWPox on’t, I’ll not meddle with him.
SIR TOBY BELCHAy, but he will not now be pacified: Fabian can
scarce hold him yonder.
SIR ANDREWPlague on’t, an I thought he had been valiant and so 265
cunning in fence, I’ld have seen him damned ere I’ld
have challenged him. Let him let the matter slip,
and I’ll give him my horse, grey Capilet.
SIR TOBY BELCHI’ll make the motion: stand here, make a good show
on’t: this shall end without the perdition of souls. 270
Marry, I’ll ride your horse as well as I ride you.
Re-enter FABIAN and VIOLA
I have his horse to take up the quarrel:
I have persuaded him the youth’s a devil.
FABIANHe is as horribly conceited of him; and pants and
looks pale, as if a bear were at his heels. 275
with you for’s oath sake: marry, he hath better
bethought him of his quarrel, and he finds that now
scarce to be worth talking of: therefore draw, for
the supportance of his vow; he protests he will not hurt you.
make me tell them how much I lack of a man. 280
FABIANGive ground, if you see him furious.
SIR TOBY BELCHCome, Sir Andrew, there’s no remedy; the gentleman
will, for his honour’s sake, have one bout with you;
he cannot by the duello avoid it: but he has
promised me, as he is a gentleman and a soldier, he 285
will not hurt you. Come on; to’t.
SIR ANDREWPray God, he keep his oath!
VIOLAI do assure you, ’tis against my will.
They draw
ANTONIOPut up your sword. If this young gentleman
Have done offence, I take the fault on me: 290
If you offend him, I for him defy you.
SIR TOBY BELCHYou, sir! why, what are you?
ANTONIOOne, sir, that for his love dares yet do more
Than you have heard him brag to you he will.
SIR TOBY BELCHNay, if you be an undertaker, I am for you. 295
They draw
Enter Officers
FABIANO good Sir Toby, hold! here come the officers.
SIR TOBY BELCHI’ll be with you anon.
VIOLAPray, sir, put your sword up, if you please.
SIR ANDREWMarry, will I, sir; and, for that I promised you,
I’ll be as good as my word: he will bear you easily 300
and reins well.
First OfficerThis is the man; do thy office.
Second OfficerAntonio, I arrest thee at the suit of Count Orsino.
ANTONIOYou do mistake me, sir.
First OfficerNo, sir, no jot; I know your favour well, 305
Though now you have no sea-cap on your head.
Take him away: he knows I know him well.
ANTONIOI must obey.
This comes with seeking you:
But there’s no remedy; I shall answer it. 310
What will you do, now my necessity
Makes me to ask you for my purse? It grieves me
Much more for what I cannot do for you
Than what befalls myself. You stand amazed;
But be of comfort. 315
Second OfficerCome, sir, away.
ANTONIOI must entreat of you some of that money.
VIOLAWhat money, sir?
For the fair kindness you have show’d me here,
And, part, being prompted by your present trouble, 320
Out of my lean and low ability
I’ll lend you something: my having is not much;
I’ll make division of my present with you:
Hold, there’s half my coffer.
ANTONIOWill you deny me now? 325
Is’t possible that my deserts to you
Can lack persuasion? Do not tempt my misery,
Lest that it make me so unsound a man
As to upbraid you with those kindnesses
That I have done for you. 330
VIOLAI know of none;
Nor know I you by voice or any feature:
I hate ingratitude more in a man
Than lying, vainness, babbling, drunkenness,
Or any taint of vice whose strong corruption 335
Inhabits our frail blood.
ANTONIOO heavens themselves!
Second OfficerCome, sir, I pray you, go.
ANTONIOLet me speak a little. This youth that you see here
I snatch’d one half out of the jaws of death, 340
Relieved him with such sanctity of love,
And to his image, which methought did promise
Most venerable worth, did I devotion.
First OfficerWhat’s that to us? The time goes by: away!
ANTONIOBut O how vile an idol proves this god 345
Thou hast, Sebastian, done good feature shame.
In nature there’s no blemish but the mind;
None can be call’d deform’d but the unkind:
Virtue is beauty, but the beauteous evil
Are empty trunks o’erflourish’d by the devil. 350
First OfficerThe man grows mad: away with him! Come, come, sir.
ANTONIOLead me on.
Exit with Officers
VIOLAMethinks his words do from such passion fly,
That he believes himself: so do not I.
Prove true, imagination, O, prove true, 355
That I, dear brother, be now ta’en for you!
SIR TOBY BELCHCome hither, knight; come hither, Fabian: we’ll
whisper o’er a couplet or two of most sage saws.
VIOLAHe named Sebastian: I my brother know
Yet living in my glass; even such and so 360
In favour was my brother, and he went
Still in this fashion, colour, ornament,
For him I imitate: O, if it prove,
Tempests are kind and salt waves fresh in love.
SIR TOBY BELCHA very dishonest paltry boy, and more a coward than 365
a hare: his dishonesty appears in leaving his
friend here in necessity and denying him; and for
his cowardship, ask Fabian.
FABIANA coward, a most devout coward, religious in it.
SIR ANDREW‘Slid, I’ll after him again and beat him. 370
SIR TOBY BELCHDo; cuff him soundly, but never draw thy sword.
SIR ANDREWAn I do not,–
FABIANCome, let’s see the event.
SIR TOBY BELCHI dare lay any money ’twill be nothing yet.