William Shakespeare: Comedy of Errors, Act IV, Scene IV
Enter Antipholus of Ephesus and the Officer
Fear me not, man; I will not break away:
I'll give thee, ere I leave thee, so much money,
To warrant thee, as I am 'rested for.
My wife is in a wayward mood to-day,
And will not lightly trust the messenger
That I should be attach'd in Ephesus,
I tell you, 'twill sound harshly in her ears.
Enter Dromio of Ephesus with a rope's-end
Here comes my man; I think he brings the money.
How now, sir! have you that I sent you for?
I am an ass, indeed; you may prove it by my long ears. I have served him from the hour of my nativity to this instant, and have nothing at his hands for my service but blows. When I am cold, he heats me with beating; when I am warm, he cools me with beating; I am waked with it when I sleep; raised with it when I sit; driven out of doors with it when I go from home; welcomed home with it when I return; nay, I bear it on my shoulders, as a beggar wont her brat; and, I think when he hath lamed me, I shall beg with it from door to door.
Enter Adriana, Luciana, the Courtezan, and Pinch
Mistress, 'respice finem,' respect your end; or rather, the prophecy like the parrot, 'beware the rope's-end.'
His incivility confirms no less.
Good Doctor Pinch, you are a conjurer;
Establish him in his true sense again,
And I will please you what you will demand.
I charge thee, Satan, housed within this man,
To yield possession to my holy prayers
And to thy state of darkness hie thee straight:
I conjure thee by all the saints in heaven!
You minion, you, are these your customers?
Did this companion with the saffron face
Revel and feast it at my house to-day,
Whilst upon me the guilty doors were shut
And I denied to enter in my house?
O husband, God doth know you dined at home;
Where would you had remain'd until this time,
Free from these slanders and this open shame!
In verity you did; my bones bear witness,
That since have felt the vigour of his rage.
Mistress, both man and master is possess'd;
I know it by their pale and deadly looks:
They must be bound and laid in some dark room.
Say, wherefore didst thou lock me forth to-day?
And why dost thou deny the bag of gold?
And, gentle master, I received no gold;
But I confess, sir, that we were lock'd out.
Dissembling harlot, thou art false in all;
And art confederate with a damned pack
To make a loathsome abject scorn of me:
But with these nails I'll pluck out these false eyes
That would behold in me this shameful sport.
Enter three or four, and offer to bind him. He strives
What, will you murder me? Thou gaoler, thou,
I am thy prisoner: wilt thou suffer them
To make a rescue?
They offer to bind Dromio of Ephesus
What wilt thou do, thou peevish officer?
Hast thou delight to see a wretched man
Do outrage and displeasure to himself?
I will discharge thee ere I go from thee:
Bear me forthwith unto his creditor,
And, knowing how the debt grows, I will pay it.
Good master doctor, see him safe convey'd
Home to my house. O most unhappy day!
Go bear him hence. Sister, go you with me.
Exeunt all but Adriana, Luciana, Officer and Courtezan
Say now, whose suit is he arrested at?
When as your husband all in rage to-day
Came to my house and took away my ring—
The ring I saw upon his finger now—
Straight after did I meet him with a chain.
It may be so, but I did never see it.
Come, gaoler, bring me where the goldsmith is:
I long to know the truth hereof at large.
Enter Antipholus of Syracuse with his rapier drawn, and Dromio of Syracuse
Exeunt all but Antipholus of Syracuse and Dromio of Syracuse
Come to the Centaur; fetch our stuff from thence:
I long that we were safe and sound aboard.
Faith, stay here this night; they will surely do us no harm: you saw they speak us fair, give us gold: methinks they are such a gentle nation that, but for the mountain of mad flesh that claims marriage of me, I could find in my heart to stay here still and turn witch.
I will not stay to-night for all the town;
Therefore away, to get our stuff aboard.