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Might in the times to come have ta'en revenge ;
With ransom of such shame. 'Would yet, he had liv'd!
Alack, when once our grace we have forgot, Nothing goes right; we would, and we would not. 2
Changes to the Fields without the Town.
Enter Duke in his own Habit, and Friar Peter. Duke. HESE letters at fit time deliver me.
The Provost knows our purpose and our plot.
Peter. It fhall be speeded well.
Duke. I thank thee, Varrius; thou haft made good hafte : Come, we will walk. Will greet us here anon,
There's other of our friends my gentle Varrius. [Exeunt,
2 we would, and we would not.] Here undoubiedly the act should end, and was ended by the poet; for here is properly a ceffation of action, and a night intervenes, and the place is changed, between the paffages of this fcene and thofe of the next. The
next act beginning with the following fcene, proceeds without any interruption of time or change of place.
* Peter never delivers the letters, but tells his story without any credentials. The poet forgot the plot which he had formed.
Enter Isabella and Mariana.
Ifab. To speak fo indirectly, I am loth: (I'd say the truth; but to accuse him so, That is your part;) yet I'm advis'd to do it, He fays, to vail full purpose. 3
Mari. Be rul'd by him.
Ifab. Befides, he tells me, that if peradventure
Mari. I would, Friar Peter
Ifab. Oh, peace; the Friar is come.
Enter Peter. 4
Peter. Come, I have found you out at a ftand most fit,
very little force on the words, mean to hide the whole extent of our defign, and therefore the read. ing may ftand yet I cannot but think Mr. Theobald's alteration either lucky on ingenious. To interpret words with fuch laxity as to make full the fame with beneficial, is to put an end, at once, to all neceffity of emendation, for any word may then ftand in the place of another.
4 Enter Peter.] This play has two Friars, either of whom might fingly have ferved. I fhould therefore imagine that Friar Thomas, in the firft act, might be changed, without any harm, to Friar Peter; for why fhould the Duke unneceffarily Į truit
3 He fays to vail full purpose.) Thus the old Copies, I don't know, what Idea our Editors form'd to themselves, of vailing full purpofe; but, I'm perfuaded, the Poet meant, as I have reftor'd; viz. to a Purpofe that will ftand us in ftead, that will profit us. THEOBALD. He fays, to vail full purpose.] Mr. Theobald alters it to, He fays, 1' availful purpoje; becaufe he has no idea of the common reading. A good reason! Yet the common reading is right. Full is uled for beneficial; and the meaning is, He fays, it is to hide a beneficial purpose, that must not yet be revealed. WARBURTON. To vail full purpose, may, with
A a 4
Where you may have fuch vantage on the Duke, He shall not pafs you. Twice have the trumpets founded:
The generous and graveft citizens
Have hent the gates, 5 and very near upon.
A publick Place near the City.
Enter Duke, Varrius, Lords, Angelo, Efcalus,
Y very worthy coufin, fairly met;
Our old and faithful friend, we're glad to fee
Ang. and Efcal. Happy return be to your royal
Duke. Many and hearty thanks be to you both:
Ang. You make my bonds ftill greater.
To lock it in the wards of covert bofom,
trust two in an affair which required only one. The name of Friar Thomas is never mentioned in the dialogue, and therefore
feems arbitrarily placed at the head of the scene.
5 Have bent the gates.] Have. taken poffeffion of the gates.
That outward courtefies would fain proclaim
Enter Peter and Ifabella.
Peter. Now is your time: speak loud, and kneel before him.
Ifab. Juftice, O royal Duke!* vail your regard Upon a wrong'd, I'd fain have faid, a maid. Oh, worthy Prince, difhonour not your eye By throwing it on any other object, 'Till you have heard me in my true complaint, And giv'n me juftice, justice, justice, justice. Duke. Relate your wrongs; in what, by whom? be brief.
Here is lord Angelo fhall give you justice;
Ifab. Oh, worthy Duke,
You bid me feek redemption of the devil.
Ang. My lord, her wits, I fear me, are not firm; She hath been a fuitor to me for her brother, Cut off by course of justice.
Ifab. By Courfe of justice!
Ang. And fhe will fpeak moft bitterly, and ftrange. Ifab. Moft ftrange, but yet moft truly, will I speak. That Angelo's forfworn, is it not strange? That Angelo's a murth'rer, is't not strange?
• Vail your regard.] That is, withdraw your thoughts from higher things; let your notice de
fcend upon a wronged woman. To vail, is to lower.
That Angelo is an adult'rous thief,
Duke. Nay, it is ten times ftrange.
Duke. Away with her, poor foul,
Ifab. O Prince, I conjure thee, as thou believ'ft There is another comfort than this world, That thou neglect me not; with that opinion That I am touch'd with madness. Make not impof
That, which but feems unlike; 'tis not impoffible,
8 In all his dreffings, caracts, titles, forms,
Duke. By mine honesty,
If the be mad, as I believe no other,
Ifab. Gracious Duke,
truth is truth To th' end of reckning ] That is, Truth has no gradations; nothing which admits of encrease → can be fo much what it is, as truth is truth. There may be a a ftrange thing, and a thing more frange, but if a propofition be true there can be none more true.
7 —as shy, as grave, as juft, as abfolute.] As fhy; as re ferved, as abstracted: as just ; as nice, as exact: as abjolute as complete in all the round of duty.
8 In all bis dreings, &c.] In all his femblance of virtue, in all his habiliments of office.