Sidor som bilder

I would I had some flowers o' the spring, that might
Become your time of day; and your's, and your's,
That wear upon your virgin branches yet

Your maiden-heads growing:-0 Proserpina,
For the flowers now, that, frighted, thou let'st fall
From Dis's waggon! daffodils,

That come before the swallow dares, and take
The winds of March with beauty: violets dim,
But sweeter than the lids of Juno's eyes,
Or Cytherea's breath; pale primroses,
That die unmarried, ere they can behold
Bright Phoebus in his strength (a malady
Most incident to maids); bold oxlips, and
The crown-imperial; lilies of all kinds,
The fleur-de-luce being one! O, these I lack
To make you garlands of; and, my sweet friend,
To strow him o'er and o'er.

Florizel. What, like a corse

Perdita. No, like a bank, for love to lie and play on; Not like a corse or if,-not to be buried,

But quick, and in mine arms. Come, take your flowers:
Methinks, I play as I have seen them do

In Whitsun pastorals: sure, this robe of mine
Does change my disposition.

Florizel. What you do,

Still betters what is done.

When you speak, sweet,

I'd have you do it ever : when you sing,

I'd have you buy and sell so; so, give alms;

Pray, so; and then

To sing them too.

A wave o' the sea,

Nothing but that

for the ordering your affairs,

When you do dance, I wish you
that you might ever do

move still, still so,

And own no further function: each your doing,

So singular in each particular,

Crowns what you 're doing in the present deeds,

That all your acts are queens.

Perdita. O Doricles,

Your praises are too large; but that your youth,

And the true blood, which peeps forth fairly through it,
Do plainly give you out an unstained shepherd;
With wisdom I might fear, my Doricles,

You woo'd me the false way.

Florizel. I think you have

As little skill to fear, as I have purpose

To put you to 't. But come; our dance, I pray :
Your hand, my Perdita: so turtles pair,

That never mean to part.

Perdita. I'll swear for 'em.

Polixenes. This is the prettiest low-born lass that ever
Ran on the green-sward; nothing she does, or seems,
But smacks of something greater than herself,
Too noble for this place.

Camillo. He tells her something

That makes her blood look out: good sooth, she is
The queen of curds and cream.”

This delicious scene is interrupted by the father of the prince discovering himself to Florizel, and haughtily breaking off the intended match between his son and Perdita. When Polixenes goes out, Perdita says,

"Even here undone :

I was much afraid; for once, or twice
I was about to speak; and tell him plainly,
The self-same sun that shines upon his court,
Hides not his visage from our cottage, but
Looks on 't alike. Will 't please you, sir, begone?

[To Florizel.

I told you what would come of this. Beseech you,
Of your own state take care: this dream of mine,-
Being now awake, I'll queen it no inch farther,
But milk my ewes and weep."

As Perdita, the supposed shepherdess, turns out to

be the daughter of Hermione, and a princess in disguise, both feelings of the pride of birth and the claims of nature are satisfied by the fortunate event of the story, and the fine romance of poetry is reconciled to the strictest court-etiquette.



ALL'S WELL THAT ENDS WELL is one of the most pleasing of our author's comedies. The interest is, however, more of a serious than of a comic nature. The character of Helena is one of great sweetness and delicacy. She is placed in circumstances of the most critical kind, and has to court her husband both as a virgin and a wife: yet the most scrupulous nicety of female modesty is not once violated. There is not one thought or action that ought to bring a blush into her cheeks, or that for a moment lessens her in our esteem. Perhaps the romantic attachment of a beautiful and virtuous girl to one placed above her hopes by the circumstances of birth and fortune, was never so exquisitely expressed as in the reflections which she utters when young Roussillon leaves his mother's house, under whose protection she has

been brought up with him, to repair to the French king's court.

"Helena. Oh, were that all!—I think not on my father; And these great tears grace his remembrance more

Than those I shed for him. What was he like?

I have forgot him: my imagination
Carries no favour in it but my Bertram's.
I am undone; there is no living, none,
If Bertram be away. It were all one
That I should love a bright particular star,
And think to wed it; he is so above me :
In his bright radiance and collateral light
Must I be comforted, not in his sphere.
The ambition in my love thus plagues itself :
The hind that would be mated by the lion,
Must die for love. "Twas pretty, though a plague,
To see him every hour; to sit and draw
His arched brows, his hawking eye, his curls

In my heart's table: heart too capable

Of every line and trick of his sweet favour:

But now he's gone, and my idolatrous fancy
Must sanctify his relics."

The interest excited by this beautiful picture of a fond and innocent heart is kept up afterwards by her resolution to follow him to France, the success of her experiment in restoring the king's health, her demanding Bertram in marriage as a recompense, his leaving her in disdain, her interview with him afterwards disguised as Diana, a young lady whom he importunes with his secret addresses, and their final reconciliation when the consequences of her stratagem and the proofs of her

« FöregåendeFortsätt »