Document: All > Shakespeare > Comedies > Twelfth Night > Act III, scene I
[Enter VIOLA, and Clown with a tabour]
VIOLA: Save thee, friend, and thy music: dost thou live by
Clown: No, sir, I live by the church.
VIOLA: Art thou a churchman?
Clown: No such matter, sir: I do live by the church; for
I do live at my house, and my house doth stand by
VIOLA: So thou mayst say, the king lies by a beggar, if a
beggar dwell near him; or, the church stands by thy
tabour, if thy tabour stand by the church.
Clown: You have said, sir. To see this age! A sentence is
but a cheveril glove to a good wit: how quickly the
wrong side may be turned outward!
VIOLA: Nay, that's certain; they that dally nicely with
words may quickly make them wanton.
Clown: I would, therefore, my sister had had no name, sir.
VIOLA: Why, man?
Clown: Why, sir, her name's a word; and to dally with that
word might make my sister wanton. But indeed words
are very rascals since bonds disgraced them.
VIOLA: Thy reason, man?
Clown: Troth, sir, I can yield you none without words; and
words are grown so false, I am loath to prove
reason with them.
VIOLA: I warrant thou art a merry fellow and carest for nothing.
Clown: Not so, sir, I do care for something; but in my
conscience, sir, I do not care for you: if that be
to care for nothing, sir, I would it would make you invisible.
VIOLA: Art not thou the Lady Olivia's fool?
Clown: No, indeed, sir; the Lady Olivia has no folly: she
will keep no fool, sir, till she be married; and
fools are as like husbands as pilchards are to
herrings; the husband's the bigger: I am indeed not
her fool, but her corrupter of words.
VIOLA: I saw thee late at the Count Orsino's.
Clown: Foolery, sir, does walk about the orb like the sun,
it shines every where. I would be sorry, sir, but
the fool should be as oft with your master as with
my mistress: I think I saw your wisdom there.
VIOLA: Nay, an thou pass upon me, I'll no more with thee.
Hold, there's expenses for thee.
Clown: Now Jove, in his next commodity of hair, send thee a beard!
VIOLA: By my troth, I'll tell thee, I am almost sick for
though I would not have it grow on my chin. Is thy
Clown: Would not a pair of these have bred, sir?
VIOLA: Yes, being kept together and put to use.
Clown: I would play Lord Pandarus of Phrygia, sir, to bring
a Cressida to this Troilus.
VIOLA: I understand you, sir; 'tis well begged.
Clown: The matter, I hope, is not great, sir, begging but
a beggar: Cressida was a beggar. My lady is
within, sir. I will construe to them whence you
come; who you are and what you would are out of my
welkin, I might say 'element,' but the word is over-worn.
VIOLA: This fellow is wise enough to play the fool;
And to do that well craves a kind of wit:
He must observe their mood on whom he jests,
The quality of persons, and the time,
And, like the haggard, cheque at every feather
That comes before his eye. This is a practise
As full of labour as a wise man's art
For folly that he wisely shows is fit;
But wise men, folly-fall'n, quite taint their wit.
[Enter SIR TOBY BELCH, and SIR ANDREW]
SIR TOBY BELCH: Save you, gentleman.
VIOLA: And you, sir.
SIR ANDREW: Dieu vous garde, monsieur.
VIOLA: Et vous aussi; votre serviteur.
SIR ANDREW: I hope, sir, you are; and I am yours.
SIR TOBY BELCH: Will you encounter the house? my niece is desirous
you should enter, if your trade be to her.
VIOLA: I am bound to your niece, sir; I mean, she is the
list of my voyage.
SIR TOBY BELCH: Taste your legs, sir; put them to motion.
VIOLA: My legs do better understand me, sir, than I
understand what you mean by bidding me taste my legs.
SIR TOBY BELCH: I mean, to go, sir, to enter.
VIOLA: I will answer you with gait and entrance. But we
[Enter OLIVIA and MARIA]
Most excellent accomplished lady, the heavens rain
odours on you!
SIR ANDREW: That youth's a rare courtier: 'Rain odours;' well.
VIOLA: My matter hath no voice, to your own most pregnant
and vouchsafed ear.
SIR ANDREW: 'Odours,' 'pregnant' and 'vouchsafed:' I'll get 'em
all three all ready.
OLIVIA: Let the garden door be shut, and leave me to my hearing.
[Exeunt SIR TOBY BELCH, SIR ANDREW, and MARIA]
Give me your hand, sir.
VIOLA: My duty, madam, and most humble service.
OLIVIA: What is your name?
VIOLA: Cesario is your servant's name, fair princess.
OLIVIA: My servant, sir! 'Twas never merry world
Since lowly feigning was call'd compliment:
You're servant to the Count Orsino, youth.
VIOLA: And he is yours, and his must needs be yours:
Your servant's servant is your servant, madam.
OLIVIA: For him, I think not on him: for his thoughts,
Would they were blanks, rather than fill'd with me!
VIOLA: Madam, I come to whet your gentle thoughts
On his behalf.
OLIVIA: O, by your leave, I pray you,
I bade you never speak again of him:
But, would you undertake another suit,
I had rather hear you to solicit that
Than music from the spheres.
VIOLA: Dear lady,--
OLIVIA: Give me leave, beseech you. I did send,
After the last enchantment you did here,
A ring in chase of you: so did I abuse
Myself, my servant and, I fear me, you:
Under your hard construction must I sit,
To force that on you, in a shameful cunning,
Which you knew none of yours: what might you think?
Have you not set mine honour at the stake
And baited it with all the unmuzzled thoughts
That tyrannous heart can think? To one of your receiving
Enough is shown: a cypress, not a bosom,
Hideth my heart. So, let me hear you speak.
VIOLA: I pity you.
OLIVIA: That's a degree to love.
VIOLA: No, not a grize; for 'tis a vulgar proof,
That very oft we pity enemies.
OLIVIA: Why, then, methinks 'tis time to smile again.
O, world, how apt the poor are to be proud!
If one should be a prey, how much the better
To fall before the lion than the wolf!
The clock upbraids me with the waste of time.
Be not afraid, good youth, I will not have you:
And yet, when wit and youth is come to harvest,
Your were is alike to reap a proper man:
There lies your way, due west.
VIOLA: Then westward-ho! Grace and good disposition
Attend your ladyship!
You'll nothing, madam, to my lord by me?
I prithee, tell me what thou thinkest of me.
VIOLA: That you do think you are not what you are.
OLIVIA: If I think so, I think the same of you.
VIOLA: Then think you right: I am not what I am.
OLIVIA: I would you were as I would have you be!
VIOLA: Would it be better, madam, than I am?
I wish it might, for now I am your fool.
OLIVIA: O, what a deal of scorn looks beautiful
In the contempt and anger of his lip!
A murderous guilt shows not itself more soon
Than love that would seem hid: love's night is noon.
Cesario, by the roses of the spring,
By maidhood, honour, truth and every thing,
I love thee so, that, maugre all thy pride,
Nor wit nor reason can my passion hide.
Do not extort thy reasons from this clause,
For that I woo, thou therefore hast no cause,
But rather reason thus with reason fetter,
Love sought is good, but given unsought better.
VIOLA: By innocence I swear, and by my youth
I have one heart, one bosom and one truth,
And that no woman has; nor never none
Shall mistress be of it, save I alone.
And so adieu, good madam: never more
Will I my master's tears to you deplore.
OLIVIA: Yet come again; for thou perhaps mayst move
That heart, which now abhors, to like his love.