All's Well That Ends Well By William Shakespeare Act IV: Scene 3

ACT IV. SCENE 3. The Florentine camp.

[Enter the two French Lords, and two or three Soldiers.]

FIRST LORD.
You have not given him his mother's letter?

SECOND LORD.
I have deliv'red it an hour since: there is something in't that
stings his nature; for on the reading, it he changed almost into
another man.

FIRST LORD.
He has much worthy blame laid upon him for shaking off so good a
wife and so sweet a lady.

SECOND LORD.
Especially he hath incurred the everlasting displeasure of the
king, who had even tuned his bounty to sing happiness to him. I
will tell you a thing, but you shall let it dwell darkly with
you.

FIRST LORD.
When you have spoken it, 'tis dead, and I am the grave of it.

SECOND LORD.
He hath perverted a young gentlewoman here in Florence, of a most
chaste renown; and this night he fleshes his will in the spoil of
her honour: he hath given her his monumental ring, and thinks
himself made in the unchaste composition.

FIRST LORD.
Now, God delay our rebellion: as we are ourselves, what things
are we!

SECOND LORD.
Merely our own traitors. And as in the common course of all
treasons, we still see them reveal themselves till they attain
to their abhorred ends; so he that in this action contrives
against his own nobility, in his proper stream, o'erflows
himself.

FIRST LORD.
Is it not meant damnable in us to be trumpeters of our unlawful
intents? We shall not then have his company to-night?

SECOND LORD.
Not till after midnight; for he is dieted to his hour.

FIRST LORD.
That approaches apace: I would gladly have him see his
company anatomized, that he might take a measure of his own
judgments, wherein so curiously he had set this counterfeit.

SECOND LORD.
We will not meddle with him till he come; for his presence must
be the whip of the other.

FIRST LORD.
In the meantime, what hear you of these wars?

SECOND LORD.
I hear there is an overture of peace.

FIRST LORD.
Nay, I assure you, a peace concluded.

SECOND LORD.
What will Count Rousillon do then? will he travel higher, or
return again into France?

FIRST LORD.
I perceive, by this demand, you are not altogether of his
counsel.

SECOND LORD.
Let it be forbid, sir: so should I be a great deal of his act.

FIRST LORD.
Sir, his wife, some two months since, fled from his house: her
pretence is a pilgrimage to Saint Jaques-le-Grand: which holy
undertaking with most austere sanctimony she accomplished; and,
there residing, the tenderness of her nature became as a prey to
her grief; in fine, made a groan of her last breath; and now she
sings in heaven.

SECOND LORD.
How is this justified?

FIRST LORD.
The stronger part of it by her own letters, which makes her story
true, even to the point of her death: her death itself which
could not be her office to say is come, was faithfully confirmed
by the rector of the place.

SECOND LORD.
Hath the count all this intelligence?

FIRST LORD.
Ay, and the particular confirmations, point from point, to the
full arming of the verity.

SECOND LORD.
I am heartily sorry that he'll be glad of this.

FIRST LORD.
How mightily, sometimes, we make us comforts of our losses!

SECOND LORD.
And how mightily, some other times, we drown our gain in tears!
The great dignity that his valour hath here acquired for him
shall at home be encountered with a shame as ample.

FIRST LORD.
The web of our life is of a mingled yarn, good and ill together:
our virtues would be proud if our faults whipped them not; and
our crimes would despair if they were not cherished by our
virtues. —

[Enter a Servant.]

How now? where's your master?

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