The Two Gentlemen of Verona


Text
Act I
Act II
Act III
Act IV
Act V
Enter Julia and Lucetta


JULIA

But say, Lucetta, now we are alone,

Wouldst thou then counsel me to fall in love?


LUCETTA

Ay, madam, so you stumble not unheedfully.
unheedfully (adv.) heedlessly, carelessly, inattentively


JULIA

Of all the fair resort of gentlemen
resort (n.) 3 crowd, gathering, company

That every day with parle encounter me,
parle, parley (n.) 3 talk, conversation, discourse

In thy opinion which is worthiest love?


LUCETTA

Please you repeat their names, I'll show my mind

According to my shallow simple skill.


JULIA

What thinkest thou of the fair Sir Eglamour?


LUCETTA

As of a knight well-spoken, neat, and fine;
neat (adj.) 1 posh, elegant, trim, refined

But, were I you, he never should be mine.


JULIA

What thinkest thou of the rich Mercatio?


LUCETTA

Well of his wealth; but of himself, so so.


JULIA

What thinkest thou of the gentle Proteus?
gentle (adj.) 1 well-born, honourable, noble See Topics: Frequency count


LUCETTA

Lord, lord, to see what folly reigns in us!


JULIA

How now, what means this passion at his name?
passion (n.) 5 passionate outburst, emotional passage


LUCETTA

Pardon, dear madam; 'tis a passing shame
passing (adj.) 1 unsurpassed, extreme, pre-eminent

That I, unworthy body as I am,

Should censure thus on lovely gentlemen.
censure (v.) 3 pass judgement on, condemn, pronounce sentence on
lovely (adj.) loving, amorous


JULIA

Why not on Proteus, as of all the rest?


LUCETTA

Then thus: of many good, I think him best.


JULIA

Your reason?


LUCETTA

I have no other but a woman's reason:

I think him so, because I think him so.


JULIA

And wouldst thou have me cast my love on him?


LUCETTA

Ay, if you thought your love not cast away.


JULIA

Why, he, of all the rest, hath never moved me.
move (v.) 9 woo, make a proposal to, make a move towards


LUCETTA

Yet he, of all the rest, I think best loves ye.


JULIA

His little speaking shows his love but small.


LUCETTA

Fire that's closest kept burns most of all.


JULIA

They do not love that do not show their love.


LUCETTA

O, they love least that let men know their love.


JULIA

I would I knew his mind.


LUCETTA

Peruse this paper, madam.


JULIA

(reads)

To Julia. – Say, from whom?


LUCETTA

That the contents will show.


JULIA

Say, say, who gave it thee?


LUCETTA

Sir Valentine's page; and sent, I think, from Proteus.

He would have given it you; but I, being in the way,

Did in your name receive it; pardon the fault, I pray.


JULIA

Now, by my modesty, a goodly broker!
broker, broker-between (n.) go-between, intermediary, agent

Dare you presume to harbour wanton lines?
wanton (adj.) 2 casual, gentle

To whisper and conspire against my youth?
conspire (v.) practise, contrive, plot

Now, trust me, 'tis an office of great worth,
office (n.) 2 role, position, place, function
trust me believe me See Topics: Discourse markers

And you an officer fit for the place.
place (n.) 1 position, post, office, rank See Topics: Frequency count

There take the paper. See it be returned,

Or else return no more into my sight.


LUCETTA

To plead for love deserves more fee than hate.


JULIA

Will ye be gone?


LUCETTA

                         That you may ruminate.

Exit


JULIA

And yet I would I had o'erlooked the letter.
overlook (v.) 1 look over, peruse, read through

It were a shame to call her back again,

And pray her to a fault for which I chid her.
chide (v.), past form chid 1 scold, rebuke, reprove See Topics: Frequency count

What ' fool is she, that knows I am a maid,

And would not force the letter to my view,

Since maids, in modesty, say no to that

Which they would have the profferer construe ay.
construe (v.) 2 take as, interpret as

Fie, fie! How wayward is this foolish love,
wayward (adj.) 1 perverse, unreasonable, awkward

That, like a testy babe, will scratch the nurse,
testy (adj.) irritable, peevish, short-tempered

And presently, all humbled, kiss the rod.
presently (adv.) 1 immediately, instantly, at once See Topics: Frequency count

How churlishly I chid Lucetta hence,
chide (v.), past form chid 4 brusquely command, drive [away] with harsh words

When willingly I would have had her here.

How angerly I taught my brow to frown,
angerly (adv.) angrily, grouchily, testily
brow (n.) 1 appearance, aspect, countenance See Topics: Frequency count

When inward joy enforced my heart to smile.

My penance is to call Lucetta back

And ask remission for my folly past.
remission (n.) 1 pardon, forgiveness

What ho! Lucetta!

Enter Lucetta


LUCETTA

                         What would your ladyship?


JULIA

Is't near dinner-time?


LUCETTA

                         I would it were,

That you might kill your stomach on your meat,
kill (v.) 1 satisfy, allay, subdue, put an end to
stomach (n.) 5 anger, resentment, vexation
stomach (n.) 1 appetite, desire [for food]

And not upon your maid.

She drops and picks up the letter


JULIA

What is't that you took up so gingerly?


LUCETTA

Nothing.


JULIA

Why didst thou stoop then?


LUCETTA

To take a paper up that I let fall.


JULIA

And is that paper nothing?


LUCETTA

Nothing concerning me.


JULIA

Then let it lie for those that it concerns.


LUCETTA

Madam, it will not lie where it concerns,
concern (v.) 2 be of importance, be of concern

Unless it have a false interpreter.
false (adj.) 5 defective, weak, inadequate


JULIA

Some love of yours hath writ to you in rhyme.


LUCETTA

That I might sing it, madam, to a tune.

Give me a note; your ladyship can set.
note (n.) 11 melody, tune, music, song
set (v.) 8 compose a tune, write the music


JULIA

As little by such toys as may be possible.
toy (n.) 1 whim, caprice, trifling matter

Best sing it to the tune of ‘ Light o' love.’


LUCETTA

It is too heavy for so light a tune.
heavy (adj.) 2 grave, serious, weighty
heavy (adj.) 1 sorrowful, sad, gloomy See Topics: Frequency count


JULIA

Heavy? Belike it hath some burden then?
belike (adv.) probably, presumably, perhaps, so it seems See Topics: Frequency count
burden, burthen (n.) 1 refrain, chorus


LUCETTA

Ay, and melodious were it, would you sing it.


JULIA

And why not you?


LUCETTA

                         I cannot reach so high.


JULIA

Let's see your song. How now, minion!
minion (n.) 2 hussy, jade, minx

Julia snatches at the letter which Lucetta retains
tune (n.) 1 state of mind, mood


LUCETTA

Keep tune there still, so you will sing it out;

And yet methinks I do not like this tune.
methinks(t), methought(s) (v.) it seems /seemed to me See Topics: Frequency count

Julia seizes the letter
sharp (adj.) 3 high-pitched, shrill, out-of-tune


JULIA

You do not?


LUCETTA

                         No, madam; it is too sharp.


JULIA

You, minion, are too saucy.


LUCETTA

Nay, now you are too flat;

And mar the concord with too harsh a descant.
descant (n.) melodious accompaniment, tuneful variation

There wanteth but a mean to fill your song.
mean (n.) 11 middle-part singer, tenor, alto
want (v.) 1 lack, need, be without See Topics: Frequency count


JULIA

The mean is drowned with your unruly bass.


LUCETTA

Indeed, I bid the bass for Proteus.
bid the base / bass challenge someone to a chase [from ‘prisoner's base’, a boy's chasing game]


JULIA

This babble shall not henceforth trouble me.

Here is a coil with protestation.
coil (n.) turmoil, disturbance, fuss
protestation (n.) solemn declaration, affirmation

She tears the letter

Go, get you gone, and let the papers lie.

You would be fingering them, to anger me.


LUCETTA

(aside)
strange, make it affect indifference, pretend to be unwilling

She makes it strange, but she would be best pleased

To be so angered with another letter.

Exit


JULIA

Nay, would I were so angered with the same!

O, hateful hands, to tear such loving words.

Injurious wasps, to feed on such sweet honey,
injurious (adj.) 1 causing injury, harmful, offending, unjust

And kill the bees that yield it with your stings.

I'll kiss each several paper for amends.
several (adj.) 1 separate, different, distinct See Topics: Frequency count

Look, here is writ, kind Julia. Unkind Julia,

As in revenge of thy ingratitude,

I throw thy name against the bruising stones,

Trampling contemptuously on thy disdain.

And here is writ, love-wounded Proteus.

Poor wounded name, my bosom, as a bed,
bosom (n.) 8 pocket on the front of a woman's dress

Shall lodge thee till thy wound be throughly healed;
throughly (adv.) thoroughly, fully, completely

And thus I search it with a sovereign kiss.
search (v.) 1 probe, explore, examine

But twice or thrice was Proteus written down.

Be calm, good wind, blow not a word away

Till I have found each letter in the letter,

Except mine own name. That some whirlwind bear

Unto a ragged, fearful, hanging rock,
ragged (adj.) 3 rough-hewn, dilapidated, rugged

And throw it thence into the raging sea.

Lo, here in one line is his name twice writ:

Poor, forlorn Proteus, passionate Proteus,

To the sweet Julia. That I'll tear away;

And yet I will not, sith so prettily

He couples it to his complaining names.

Thus will I fold them one upon another.

Now kiss, embrace, contend, do what you will.

Enter Lucetta


LUCETTA

Madam,

Dinner is ready, and your father stays.


JULIA

Well, let us go.


LUCETTA

What, shall these papers lie like tell-tales here?


JULIA

If you respect them, best to take them up.
respect (v.) 3 value, have regard for, prize


LUCETTA

Nay, I was taken up for laying them down.
take up (v.) 9 rebuke, scold, reprimand

Yet here they shall not lie for catching cold.

She picks up the pieces of the letter
mind (n.) 1 inclination, desire, wish


JULIA

I see you have a month's mind to them.


LUCETTA

Ay, madam, you may say what sights you see;

I see things too, although you judge I wink.
judge (v.) 1 suppose, consider, think
wink (v.) 1 shut one's eyes


JULIA

Come, come, will't please you go?

Exeunt

 
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