All's Well That Ends Well


Text
Act I
Act II
Act III
Act IV
Act V
Enter the King with divers young Lords taking leave

for the Florentine war; Bertram and Parolles;

attendants. Flourish of cornets


KING

Farewell, young lords; these warlike principles
divers (adj.) different, various, several

Do not throw from you; and you, my lords, farewell.

Share the advice betwixt you; if both gain all,

The gift doth stretch itself as 'tis received,

And is enough for both.


FIRST LORD

                         'Tis our hope, sir,

After well-entered soldiers, to return
well-entered (adj.) well-trained, duly initiated

And find your grace in health.


KING

No, no, it cannot be; and yet my heart

Will not confess he owes the malady
owe (v.) 1 own, possess, have See Topics: Frequency count

That doth my life besiege. Farewell, young lords.

Whether I live or die, be you the sons

Of worthy Frenchmen. Let higher Italy –
higher (adj.) [unclear meaning] upper, northern

Those bated that inherit but the fall
bate (v.) 3 except, omit, leave out of consideration

Of the last monarchy – see that you come

Not to woo honour, but to wed it. When

The bravest questant shrinks, find what you seek,
questant (n.) seeker, searcher, someone engaged in a quest

That fame may cry you loud. I say farewell.
cry (v.) 1 speak loudly, shout out, proclaim


SECOND LORD

Health at your bidding serve your majesty!


KING

Those girls of Italy, take heed of them:

They say our French lack language to deny

If they demand. Beware of being captives

Before you serve.


BOTH LORDS

                         Our hearts receive your warnings.


KING

Farewell. (To some attendants) Come hither to me.

He withdraws


FIRST LORD

O my sweet lord, that you will stay behind us!


PAROLLES

'Tis not his fault, the spark.
brave (adj.) 1 fine, excellent, splendid, impressive See Topics: Frequency count
spark (n.) young blade, man about town, dude


SECOND LORD

                         O, 'tis brave wars!


PAROLLES

Most admirable! I have seen those wars.


BERTRAM

I am commanded here, and kept a coil with
coil (n.) turmoil, disturbance, fuss

‘ Too young,’ and ‘ The next year,’ and ‘ 'Tis too early.’


PAROLLES

An thy mind stand to't, boy, steal away bravely.
bravely (adv.) 3 in fine clothes, splendidly dressed
stand to it (v.) 3 be steadfast, stand firm, make a stand


BERTRAM

I shall stay here the forehorse to a smock,
forehorse, fore-horse (n.) foremost horse, leader [in a team of horses]
smock (n.) woman's undergarment, shift, slip, chemise

Creaking my shoes on the plain masonry,
creak (v.) make something creak, squeak
masonry (n.) stonework, floor
plain (adj.) 3 [bowls] level, flat, even, smooth

Till honour be bought up, and no sword worn

But one to dance with. By heaven, I'll steal away!


FIRST LORD

There's honour in the theft.


PAROLLES

                         Commit it, Count.


SECOND LORD

I am your accessary; and so farewell.
accessary (n.) assistant, helper, collaborator


BERTRAM

I grow to you, and our parting is a tortured

body.


FIRST LORD

Farewell, captain.


SECOND LORD

Sweet Monsieur Parolles!


PAROLLES

Noble heroes, my sword and yours are kin.

Good sparks and lustrous, a word, good metals. You
spark (n.) young blade, man about town, dude

shall find in the regiment of the Spinii one Captain

Spurio, with his cicatrice, an emblem of war, here on his
cicatrice (n.) scar, scar-like mark

sinister cheek; it was this very sword entrenched it. Say
entrench, intrench (v.) 2 gash, make a deep cut in

to him I live, and observe his reports for me.


FIRST LORD

We shall, noble captain.

Exeunt the Lords


PAROLLES

Mars dote on you for his novices! (To Bertram)

What will ye do?


BERTRAM

Stay: the King.


PAROLLES

Use a more spacious ceremony to the noble

lords; you have restrained yourself within the list of too
list (n.) 3 boundary, limit, confines

cold an adieu. Be more expressive to them, for they

wear themselves in the cap of the time; there do muster
muster (v.) 3 display, illustrate, exhibit

true gait, eat, speak, and move, under the influence of
gait (n.) 1 manner of walking, bearing, movement

the most received star; and though the devil lead the
received (adj.) 2 fashionable, accepted as a norm, generally adopted

measure, such are to be followed. After them, and take a
measure (n.) 8 slow stately dance, graceful movement

more dilated farewell.
dilated (adj.) 2 extended, leisurely, lengthy


BERTRAM

And I will do so.


PAROLLES

Worthy fellows, and like to prove most sinewy
like (adv.) 1 likely, probable / probably See Topics: Frequency count
sinewy (adj.) muscular, well-developed, brawny

sword-men

Exeunt Bertram and Parolles

Enter Lafew. The King comes forward


LAFEW

(kneeling)

Pardon, my lord, for me and for my tidings.


KING

I'll sue thee to stand up.
sue (v.) 1 beg, plead, beseech


LAFEW

Then here's a man stands that has brought his pardon.

I would you had kneeled, my lord, to ask me mercy,

And that at my bidding you could so stand up.


KING

I would I had, so I had broke thy pate
pate (n.) head, skull See Topics: Frequency count

And asked thee mercy for't.
across (adv.) 3 [of a lance] not straight, obliquely; awry, amiss


LAFEW

                         Good faith, across!

But, my good lord 'tis thus: will you be cured

Of your infirmity?


KING

                         No.


LAFEW

                                                         O, will you eat

No grapes, my royal fox? Yes, but you will
will (v.), past form would 1 desire, wish, want

My noble grapes, and if my royal fox

Could reach them. I have seen a medicine
medicine (n.) 2 physician, doctor

That's able to breathe life into a stone,

Quicken a rock, and make you dance canary
canary, canaries (n.) 2 lively Spanish dance
quicken (v.) 1 revive, rejuvenate, give life [to]

With sprightly fire and motion; whose simple touch
simple (adj.) 6 basic, minimal, small

Is powerful to araise King Pippen, nay,
araise (v.) raise from the dead, awake from the grave

To give great Charlemain a pen in's hand

And write to her a love-line.


KING

                         What ‘ her ’ is this?


LAFEW

Why, Doctor She! My lord, there's one arrived,

If you will see her. Now by my faith and honour,

If seriously I may convey my thoughts

In this my light deliverance, I have spoke
deliverance (n.) 1 delivery, utterance, reporting
light (adj.) 6 facile, frivolous, of no consequence

With one that in her sex, her years, profession,
profession (n.) 1 avowal of skilled knowledge, declaration of ability to carry out a task

Wisdom, and constancy hath amazed me more

Than I dare blame my weakness. Will you see her,

For that is her demand, and know her business?

That done, laugh well at me.


KING

                         Now, good Lafew,

Bring in the admiration, that we with thee
admiration (n.) 2 object of wonder, marvel, phenomenon

May spend our wonder too, or take off thine
take off (v.) 1 reduce, diminish, lessen

By wondering how thou tookest it.
fit (v.) 4 supply [with what is fit], satisfy
take (v.) 15 suppose, conceive, come to believe,


LAFEW

                         Nay, I'll fit you,

And not be all day neither.

He goes to the door


KING

Thus he his special nothing ever prologues.


LAFEW

Nay, come your ways.

Enter Helena


KING

                         This haste hath wings indeed.


LAFEW

Nay, come your ways.

This is his majesty: say your mind to him.

A traitor you do look like, but such traitors

His majesty seldom fears. I am Cressid's uncle

That dare leave two together. Fare you well.
fare (v.) 1 get on, manage, do, cope See Topics: Frequency count

Exit


KING

Now, fair one, does your business follow us?
follow (v.) 5 aim at, relate to, pertain to


HELENA

Ay, my good lord.

Gerard de Narbon was my father,

In what he did profess, well found.
profess (v.) 4 make profession of, do as an occupation
well-found (adj.) 1 of proven merit, of established reputation, commendable


KING

                         I knew him.


HELENA

The rather will I spare my praises towards him;

Knowing him is enough. On's bed of death

Many receipts he gave me; chiefly one,
receipt (n.) 3 recipe, formula, prescription

Which, as the dearest issue of his practice,
issue (n.) 3 yield, product, result
issue (n.) 2 outcome, result, consequence(s) See Topics: Frequency count

And of his old experience th' only darling,

He bade me store up as a triple eye,
bid (v.), past form bade 1 command, order, enjoin, tell

Safer than mine own two, more dear; I have so,

And hearing your high majesty is touched
touch (v.) 7 threaten, endanger, imperil

With that malignant cause wherein the honour
cause (n.) 8 disease, illness, sickness

Of my dear father's gift stands chief in power,
stand (v.) 1 be, appear

I come to tender it and my appliance,
appliance (n.) 1 remedy, cure, treatment
tender (v.) 1 offer, give, present

With all bound humbleness.
bound (adj.) 4 ready, prepared


KING

                         We thank you, maiden,

But may not be so credulous of cure,
credulous (adj.) 2 over-ready to believe, naively trusting

When our most learned doctors leave us, and

The congregated college have concluded

That labouring art can never ransom nature
art (n.) 1 knowledge, learning, scholarship, science
labouring (adj.) aspiring, striving, showing endeavour
nature (n.) 6 natural order, ungoverned state, way of the world [often personified]

From her inaidible estate. I say we must not
inaidible (adj.) unable to be assisted, incapable of being helped

So stain our judgement or corrupt our hope,
stain (v.) 1 corrupt, spoil, taint

To prostitute our past-cure malady

To empirics, or to dissever so
dissever (v.) divide, split up, separate
empiric (n.) medical quack, untrained practitioner

Our great self and our credit, to esteem
credit (n.) 3 reputation, name, standing, honour

A senseless help, when help past sense we deem.
senseless (adj.) 3 lacking in sense, stupid, foolish


HELENA

My duty then shall pay me for my pains.
duty (n.) 2 reverence, due respect, proper attitude

I will no more enforce mine office on you,
office (n.) 1 task, service, duty, responsibility See Topics: Frequency count

Humbly entreating from your royal thoughts

A modest one to bear me back a again.
modest (adj.) 1 moderate, reasonable, mild, limited


KING

I cannot give thee less, to be called grateful.

Thou thoughtest to help me, and such thanks I give

As one near death to those that wish him live.

But what at full I know, thou knowest no part;

I knowing all my peril, thou no art.


HELENA

What I can do can do no hurt to try,

Since you set up your rest 'gainst remedy.
set up one's rest (n.) [in primero] venture one's final stake, stake all

He that of greatest works is finisher

Oft does them by the weakest minister.
oft (adv.) often See Topics: Frequency count

So holy writ in babes hath judgement shown,
writ (n.) 3 [archaism] gospel, holy writ See Topics: Archaisms

When judges have been babes; great floods have flown

From simple sources; and great seas have dried

When miracles have by the greatest been denied.

Oft expectation fails, and most oft there
oft (adv.) often See Topics: Frequency count

Where most it promises, and oft it hits

Where hope is coldest and despair most fits.


KING

I must not hear thee. Fare thee well, kind maid.
fare (v.) 1 get on, manage, do, cope See Topics: Frequency count

Thy pains, not used, must by thyself be paid;

Proffers not took reap thanks for their reward.
proffer (n.) 1 offer, proposal, proposition


HELENA

Inspired merit so by breath is barred.
breath (n.) 1 utterance, speech, voice
inspired (adj.) coming from God, of divine origin
merit (n.) 3 good works [yielding reward from God]

It is not so with Him that all things knows

As 'tis with us that square our guess by shows;
guess (n.) conjecture, opinion, view
show (n.) 1 appearance, exhibition, display
square (v.) 3 base, form, shape

But most it is presumption in us when

The help of heaven we count the act of men.

Dear sir, to my endeavours give consent.

Of heaven, not me, make an experiment.

I am not an impostor, that proclaim

Myself against the level of mine aim,
level (n.) 2 line of fire

But know I think, and think I know most sure,

My art is not past power, nor you past cure.
art (n.) 1 knowledge, learning, scholarship, science
past (prep.) incapable of


KING

Art thou so confident? Within what space
space (n.) 1 space of time, while

Hopest thou my cure?


HELENA

                         The greatest grace lending grace,

Ere twice the horses of the sun shall bring

Their fiery torcher his diurnal ring,
coacher (n.) [Q variant of torcher, unclear meaning] coach, chariot
ring (n.) 1 round, circuit, orbit
torcher (n.) light-giver, torch-carrier

Ere twice in murk and occidental damp
damp (n.) fog, mist, vapour
occidental (adj.) western, westerly; sunset

Moist Hesperus hath quenched her sleepy lamp,

Or four and twenty times the pilot's glass
glass (n.) 3 [sand of the] hourglass

Hath told the thievish minutes how they pass,

What is infirm from your sound parts shall fly,

Health shall live free and sickness freely die.


KING

Upon thy certainty and confidence

What darest thou venture?
tax (n.) charge, accusation, censure


HELENA

                         Tax of impudence,

A strumpet's boldness, a divulged shame;
strumpet (n.) harlot, prostitute, whore

Traduced by odious ballads my maiden's name;
traduce (v.) defame, slander, calumniate, dishonour

Seared otherwise, ne worse of worst, extended
extend (adj.) racked, stretched
seared (adj.) 2 branded, stigmatized, vilified

With vildest torture let my life be ended.
vile, vild (adj.) 2 despicable, disgusting, abhorrent


KING

Methinks in thee some blessed spirit doth speak
methinks(t), methought(s) (v.) it seems /seemed to me See Topics: Frequency count

His powerful sound within an organ weak;

And what impossibility would slay

In common sense, sense saves another way.
save (v.) 1 keep, preserve, maintain See Topics: Politeness

Thy life is dear, for all that life can rate
rate (v.) 2 reckon, estimate, appraise

Worth name of life in thee hath estimate:
estimate (n.) 1 value, esteem, estimation

Youth, beauty, wisdom, courage – all

That happiness and prime can happy call.
prime (n.) 2 early years, prime of life, fullness of youth

Thou this to hazard needs must intimate
hazard (v.) 1 expose to danger, put at risk

Skill infinite, or monstrous desperate.
desperate (adj.) 3 disregarding, careless, reckless
monstrous (adv.) exceedingly, wonderfully, extraordinarily

Sweet practiser, thy physic I will try,
physic (n.) 1 medicine, healing, treatment See Topics: Frequency count
practiser (n.) practitioner

That ministers thine own death if I die.


HELENA

If I break time, or flinch in property
break (v.) 17 fail to keep, default on
flinch (v.) fall short, give way, turn aside
property (n.) 2 feature, characteristic, particular respect

Of what I spoke, unpitied let me die,

And well deserved. Not helping, death's my fee;
deserved (adj.) deserving, meritorious, praiseworthy

But if I help, what do you promise me?


KING

Make thy demand.
even (adj.) 6 equal, alike, same


HELENA

                         But will you make it even?


KING

Ay, by my sceptre and my hopes of heaven.


HELENA

Then shalt thou give me with thy kingly hand

What husband in thy power I will command:
power (n.) 7 control, influence, sway

Exempted be from me the arrogance

To choose from forth the royal blood of France

My low and humble name to propagate

With any branch or image of thy state;

But such a one, thy vassal, whom I know
vassal (n.) 1 servant, slave, subject

Is free for me to ask, thee to bestow.


KING

Here is my hand; the premises observed,

Thy will by my performance shall be served.

So make the choice of thy own time, for I,

Thy resolved patient, on thee still rely.
still (adv.) 1 constantly, always, continually See Topics: Frequency count

More should I question thee, and more I must,

Though more to know could not be more to trust:

From whence thou camest, how tended on – but rest
tend on / upon (v.) serve, follow, wait upon, escort

Unquestioned welcome, and undoubted blessed.

Give me some help here, ho! If thou proceed

As high as word, my deed shall match thy deed.

Flourish. Exeunt

 
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