Comedy of Errors By William Shakespeare Act II: Scene2

ACT II. SCENE 2. The same.

[Enter ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE.]

ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE.
The gold I gave to Dromio is laid up
Safe at the Centaur; and the heedful slave
Is wander'd forth in care to seek me out.
By computation and mine host's report
I could not speak with Dromio since at first
I sent him from the mart. See, here he comes.

[Enter DROMIO OF SYRACUSE.]

How now, sir! is your merry humour alter'd?
As you love strokes, so jest with me again.
You know no Centaur? you receiv'd no gold?
Your mistress sent to have me home to dinner?
My house was at the Phoenix? Wast thou mad,
That thus so madly thou didst answer me?

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE.
What answer, sir? when spake I such a word?

ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE.
Even now, even here, not half-an-hour since.

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE.
I did not see you since you sent me hence,
Home to the Centaur with the gold you gave me.

ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE.
Villain, thou didst deny the gold's receipt;
And told'st me of a mistress and a dinner;
For which, I hope, thou felt'st I was displeas'd.

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE.
I am glad to see you in this merry vein:
What means this jest? I pray you, master, tell me.

ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE.
Yea, dost thou jeer and flout me in the teeth?
Think'st thou I jest? Hold, take thou that, and that.
[Beating him.]

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE.
Hold, sir, for God's sake: now your jest is earnest:
Upon what bargain do you give it me?

ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE.
Because that I familiarly sometimes
Do use you for my fool, and chat with you,
Your sauciness will jest upon my love,
And make a common of my serious hours.
When the sun shines let foolish gnats make sport,
But creep in crannies when he hides his beams.
If you will jest with me, know my aspect,
And fashion your demeanour to my looks,
Or I will beat this method in your sconce.

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE.
Sconce, call you it? so you would leave battering, I had rather
have it a head: an you use these blows long, I must get a sconce
for my head, and ensconce it too; or else I shall seek my wit in
my shoulders. — But I pray, sir, why am I beaten?

ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE.
Dost thou not know?

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE.
Nothing, sir, but that I am beaten.

ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE.
Shall I tell you why?

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE.
Ay, sir, and wherefore; for, they say, every why hath a
wherefore. —

ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE.
Why, first, — for flouting me; and then wherefore,
For urging it the second time to me.

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE.
Was there ever any man thus beaten out of season,
When in the why and the wherefore is neither rhyme nor reason? —
Well, sir, I thank you.

ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE.
Thank me, sir! for what?

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE.
Marry, sir, for this something that you gave me for nothing.

ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE.
I'll make you amends next, to give you nothing for something. —
But say, sir, is it dinner-time?

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE.
No, sir; I think the meat wants that I have.

ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE.
In good time, sir, what's that?

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE.
Basting.

ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE.
Well, sir, then 'twill be dry.

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE.
If it be, sir, I pray you eat none of it.

ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE.
Your reason?

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE.
Lest it make you choleric, and purchase me another dry basting.

ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE.
Well, sir, learn to jest in good time:
There's a time for all things.

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE.
I durst have denied that before you were so choleric.

ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE.
By what rule, sir?

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE.
Marry, sir, by a rule as plain as the plain bald pate of Father
Time himself.

ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE.
Let's hear it.

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE.
There's no time for a man to recover his hair, that grows bald by
nature.

ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE.
May he not do it by fine and recovery?

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE.
Yes, to pay a fine for a peruke, and recover the lost hair of
another man.

ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE.
Why is Time such a niggard of hair, being, as it is, so plentiful
an excrement?

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE.
Because it is a blessing that he bestows on beasts: and what he
hath scanted men in hair he hath given them in wit.

ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE.
Why, but there's many a man hath more hair than wit.

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE.
Not a man of those but he hath the wit to lose his hair.

ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE.
Why, thou didst conclude hairy men plain dealers without wit.

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE.
The plainer dealer, the sooner lost: yet he loseth it in a kind
of jollity.

ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE.
For what reason?

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE.
For two; and sound ones too.

ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE.
Nay, not sound, I pray you.

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE.
Sure ones, then.

ANTIPHOLUS OF SYRACUSE.
Nay, not sure, in a thing falsing.

DROMIO OF SYRACUSE.
Certain ones, then.

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