Gower Marina thus the brothel ’scapes, and chances
Into an honest house, our story says.
She sings like one immortal, and she dances
As goddess-like to her admired lays;
Deep clerks she dumbs; and with her needle composes
Nature’s own shape, of bud, bird, branch, or berry,
That even her art sisters the natural roses;
Her inkle, silk, twin with the rubied cherry:
That pupils lacks she none of noble race,
Who pour their bounty on her; and her gain
She gives the cursed bawd. Here we her place;
And to her father turn our thoughts again,
Where we left him, on the sea. We there him lost;
Whence, driven before the winds, he is arrived
Here where his daughter dwells; and on this coast
Suppose him now at anchor. The city strived
God Neptune’s annual feast to keep: from whence
Lysimachus our Tyrian ship espies,
His banners sable, trimm’d with rich expense;
And to him in his barge with fervor hies.
In your supposing once more put your sight
Of heavy Pericles; think this his bark:
Where what is done in action, more, if might,
Shall be discover’d; please you, sit and hark.
pavilion on deck, with a curtain before it; Pericles within it, reclined on a couch. A barge lying beside the Tyrian vessel.
Enter two Sailors, one belonging to the Tyrian vessel, the other to the barge; to them Helicanus
Tyrian Sailor [To the Sailor of Mytilene] Where is lord Helicanus? he can resolve you.
O, here he is.
Sir, there’s a barge put off from Mytilene,
And in it is Lysimachus the governor,
Who craves to come aboard. What is your will?
Helicanus That he have his. Call up some gentlemen.
Tyrian Sailor Ho, gentlemen! my lord calls.
Enter two or three Gentlemen
First Gentleman Doth your lordship call?
Helicanus Gentlemen, there’s some of worth would come aboard;
I pray ye, greet them fairly.
The Gentlemen and the two Sailors descend, and go on board the barge
Enter, from thence, Lysimachus and Lords; with the Gentlemen and the two Sailors
Tyrian Sailor Sir,
This is the man that can, in aught you would,
Lysimachus Hail, reverend sir! the gods preserve you!
Helicanus And you, sir, to outlive the age I am,
And die as I would do.
Lysimachus You wish me well.
Being on shore, honouring of Neptune’s triumphs,
Seeing this goodly vessel ride before us,
I made to it, to know of whence you are.
Helicanus First, what is your place?
Lysimachus I am the governor of this place you lie before.
Our vessel is of Tyre, in it the king;
A man who for this three months hath not spoken
To any one, nor taken sustenance
But to prorogue his grief.
Lysimachus Upon what ground is his distemperature?
Helicanus ’Twould be too tedious to repeat;
But the main grief springs from the loss
Of a beloved daughter and a wife.
Lysimachus May we not see him?
Helicanus You may;
But bootless is your sight: he will not speak To any.
Lysimachus Yet let me obtain my wish.
Helicanus Behold him.
This was a goodly person,
Till the disaster that, one mortal night,
Drove him to this.
Lysimachus Sir king, all hail! the gods preserve you!
Hail, royal sir!
Helicanus It is in vain; he will not speak to you.
First Lord Sir,
We have a maid in Mytilene, I durst wager,
Would win some words of him.
Lysimachus ’Tis well bethought.
She questionless with her sweet harmony
And other chosen attractions, would allure,
And make a battery through his deafen’d parts,
Which now are midway stopp’d:
She is all happy as the fairest of all,
And, with her fellow maids is now upon
The leafy shelter that abuts against
The island’s side.
Whispers a Lord, who goes off in the barge of Lysimachus
Helicanus Sure, all’s effectless; yet nothing we’ll omit
That bears recovery’s name. But, since your kindness
We have stretch’d thus far, let us beseech you
That for our gold we may provision have,
Wherein we are not destitute for want,
But weary for the staleness.
Lysimachus O, sir, a courtesy
Which if we should deny, the most just gods
For every graff would send a caterpillar,
And so afflict our province. Yet once more
Let me entreat to know at large the cause
Of your king’s sorrow.
Helicanus Sit, sir, I will recount it to you:
But, see, I am prevented.
Re-enter, from the barge, Lord, with Marina, and a young Lady
Lysimachus O, here is
The lady that I sent for. Welcome, fair one!
Is’t not a goodly presence?
Helicanus She’s a gallant lady.
Lysimachus She’s such a one, that, were I well assured
Came of a gentle kind and noble stock,
I’ld wish no better choice, and think me rarely wed.
Fair one, all goodness that consists in bounty
Expect even here, where is a kingly patient:
If that thy prosperous and artificial feat
Can draw him but to answer thee in aught,
Thy sacred physic shall receive such pay
As thy desires can wish.
Marina Sir, I will use
My utmost skill in his recovery, Provided
That none but I and my companion maid
Be suffer’d to come near him.
Lysimachus Come, let us leave her;
And the gods make her prosperous!
Lysimachus Mark’d he your music?
Marina No, nor look’d on us.
Lysimachus See, she will speak to him.
Marina Hail, sir! my lord, lend ear.
Pericles Hum, ha!
Marina I am a maid,
My lord, that ne’er before invited eyes,
But have been gazed on like a comet: she speaks,
My lord, that, may be, hath endured a grief
Might equal yours, if both were justly weigh’d.
Though wayward fortune did malign my state,
My derivation was from ancestors
Who stood equivalent with mighty kings:
But time hath rooted out my parentage,
And to the world and awkward casualties
Bound me in servitude.
I will desist;
But there is something glows upon my cheek,
And whispers in mine ear, ‘Go not till he speak.’
Pericles My fortunes — parentage — good parentage —
To equal mine! — was it not thus? what say you?
Marina I said, my lord, if you did know my parentage,
You would not do me violence.
Pericles I do think so. Pray you, turn your eyes upon me.
You are like something that — What country-woman?
Here of these shores?
Marina No, nor of any shores:
Yet I was mortally brought forth, and am
No other than I appear.
Pericles I am great with woe, and shall deliver weeping.
My dearest wife was like this maid, and such a one
My daughter might have been: my queen’s square brows;
Her stature to an inch; as wand-like straight;
As silver-voiced; her eyes as jewel-like
And cased as richly; in pace another Juno;
Who starves the ears she feeds, and makes them hungry,
The more she gives them speech. Where do you live?
Marina Where I am but a stranger: from the deck
You may discern the place.
Pericles Where were you bred?
And how achieved you these endowments, which
You make more rich to owe?
Marina If I should tell my history, it would seem
Like lies disdain’d in the reporting.
Pericles Prithee, speak:
Falseness cannot come from thee; for thou look’st
Modest as Justice, and thou seem’st a palace
For the crown’d Truth to dwell in: I will believe thee,
And make my senses credit thy relation
To points that seem impossible; for thou look’st
Like one I loved indeed. What were thy friends?
Didst thou not say, when I did push thee back —
Which was when I perceived thee — that thou camest
From good descending?
Marina So indeed I did.
Pericles Report thy parentage. I think thou said’st
Thou hadst been toss’d from wrong to injury,
And that thou thought’st thy griefs might equal mine,
If both were open’d.
Marina Some such thing
I said, and said no more but what my thoughts
Did warrant me was likely.
Pericles Tell thy story;
If thine consider’d prove the thousandth part
Of my endurance, thou art a man, and I
Have suffer’d like a girl: yet thou dost look
Like Patience gazing on kings’ graves, and smiling
Extremity out of act. What were thy friends?
How lost thou them? Thy name, my most kind virgin?
Recount, I do beseech thee: come, sit by me.
Marina My name is Marina.
Pericles O, I am mock’d,
And thou by some incensed god sent hither
To make the world to laugh at me.
Marina Patience, good sir,
Or here I’ll cease.
Pericles Nay, I’ll be patient.
Thou little know’st how thou dost startle me,
To call thyself Marina.
Marina The name
Was given me by one that had some power,
My father, and a king.
Pericles How! a king’s daughter?
And call’d Marina?
Marina You said you would believe me;
But, not to be a troubler of your peace,
I will end here.
Pericles But are you flesh and blood?
Have you a working pulse? and are no fairy?
Motion! Well; speak on. Where were you born?
And wherefore call’d Marina?
Marina Call’d Marina
For I was born at sea.
Pericles At sea! what mother?
Marina My mother was the daughter of a king;
Who died the minute I was born,
As my good nurse Lychorida hath oft
Pericles O, stop there a little!
This is the rarest dream that e’er dull sleep
Did mock sad fools withal: this cannot be:
My daughter’s buried. Well: where were you bred?
I’ll hear you more, to the bottom of your story,
And never interrupt you.
Marina You scorn: believe me, ’twere best I did give o’er.
Pericles I will believe you by the syllable
Of what you shall deliver. Yet, give me leave:
How came you in these parts? where were you bred?
Marina The king my father did in Tarsus leave me;
Till cruel Cleon, with his wicked wife,
Did seek to murder me: and having woo’d
A villain to attempt it, who having drawn to do’t,
A crew of pirates came and rescued me;
Brought me to Mytilene. But, good sir,
Whither will you have me? Why do you weep?
It may be,
You think me an impostor: no, good faith;
I am the daughter to King Pericles,
If good King Pericles be.
Pericles Ho, Helicanus!
Helicanus Calls my lord?
Pericles Thou art a grave and noble counsellor,
Most wise in general: tell me, if thou canst,
What this maid is, or what is like to be,
That thus hath made me weep?
Helicanus I know not; but
Here is the regent, sir, of Mytilene
Speaks nobly of her.
Lysimachus She would never tell
Her parentage; being demanded that,
She would sit still and weep.
Pericles O Helicanus, strike me, honour’d sir;
Give me a gash, put me to present pain;
Lest this great sea of joys rushing upon me
O’erbear the shores of my mortality,
And drown me with their sweetness. O, come hither,
Thou that beget’st him that did thee beget;
Thou that wast born at sea, buried at Tarsus,
And found at sea again! O Helicanus,
Down on thy knees, thank the holy gods as loud
As thunder threatens us: this is Marina.
What was thy mother’s name? tell me but that,
For truth can never be confirm’d enough,
Though doubts did ever sleep.
Marina First, sir, I pray,
What is your title?
Pericles I am Pericles of Tyre: but tell me now
My drown’d queen’s name, as in the rest you said
Thou hast been godlike perfect,
The heir of kingdoms and another like
To Pericles thy father.
Marina Is it no more to be your daughter than
To say my mother’s name was Thaisa?
Thaisa was my mother, who did end
The minute I began.
Pericles Now, blessing on thee! rise; thou art my child.
Give me fresh garments. Mine own, Helicanus;
She is not dead at Tarsus, as she should have been,
By savage Cleon: she shall tell thee all;
When thou shalt kneel, and justify in knowledge
She is thy very princess. Who is this?
Helicanus Sir, ’tis the governor of Mytilene,
Who, hearing of your melancholy state,
Did come to see you.
Pericles I embrace you.
Give me my robes. I am wild in my beholding.
O heavens bless my girl! But, hark, what music?
Tell Helicanus, my Marina, tell him
O’er, point by point, for yet he seems to doubt,
How sure you are my daughter. But, what music?
Helicanus My lord, I hear none.
The music of the spheres! List, my Marina.
Lysimachus It is not good to cross him; give him way.
Pericles Rarest sounds! Do ye not hear?
Lysimachus My lord, I hear.
Pericles Most heavenly music!
It nips me unto listening, and thick slumber
Hangs upon mine eyes: let me rest.
Lysimachus A pillow for his head:
So, leave him all. Well, my companion friends,
If this but answer to my just belief,
I’ll well remember you.
Exeunt all but Pericles
Diana appears to Pericles as in a vision
Diana My temple stands in Ephesus: hie thee thither,
And do upon mine altar sacrifice.
There, when my maiden priests are met together,
Before the people all,
Reveal how thou at sea didst lose thy wife:
To mourn thy crosses, with thy daughter’s, call
And give them repetition to the life.
Or perform my bidding, or thou livest in woe;
Do it, and happy; by my silver bow!
Awake, and tell thy dream.
Pericles Celestial Dian, goddess argentine,
I will obey thee. Helicanus!
Re-enter Helicanus, Lysimachus, and Marina
Pericles My purpose was for Tarsus, there to strike
The inhospitable Cleon; but I am
For other service first: toward Ephesus
Turn our blown sails; eftsoons I’ll tell thee why.
Shall we refresh us, sir, upon your shore,
And give you gold for such provision
As our intents will need?
With all my heart; and, when you come ashore,
I have another suit.
Pericles You shall prevail,
Were it to woo my daughter; for it seems
You have been noble towards her.
Lysimachus Sir, lend me your arm.
Pericles Come, my Marina.
Enter Gower, before the temple of Diana at Ephesus
Gower Now our sands are almost run;
More a little, and then dumb.
This, my last boon, give me,
For such kindness must relieve me,
That you aptly will suppose
What pageantry, what feats, what shows,
What minstrelsy, and pretty din,
The regent made in Mytilene
To greet the king. So he thrived,
That he is promised to be wived
To fair Marina; but in no wise
Till he had done his sacrifice,
As Dian bade: whereto being bound,
The interim, pray you, all confound.
In feather’d briefness sails are fill’d,
And wishes fall out as they’re will’d.
At Ephesus, the temple see,
Our king and all his company.
That he can hither come so soon,
Is by your fancy’s thankful doom.
near the altar, as high priestess; a number of Virgins on each side; Cerimon and other Inhabitants of Ephesus attending.
Enter Pericles, with his train; Lysimachus, Helicanus, Marina, and a Lady
Pericles Hail, Dian! to perform thy just command,
I here confess myself the king of Tyre;
Who, frighted from my country, did wed
At Pentapolis the fair Thaisa.
At sea in childbed died she, but brought forth
A maid-child call’d Marina; who, O goddess,
Wears yet thy silver livery. She at Tarsus
Was nursed with Cleon; who at fourteen years
He sought to murder: but her better stars
Brought her to Mytilene; ’gainst whose shore
Riding, her fortunes brought the maid aboard us,
Where, by her own most clear remembrance, she
Made known herself my daughter.
Thaisa Voice and favour!
You are, you are — O royal Pericles!
Pericles What means the nun? she dies! help, gentlemen!
Cerimon Noble sir,
If you have told Diana’s altar true,
This is your wife.
Pericles Reverend appearer, no;
I threw her overboard with these very arms.
Cerimon Upon this coast, I warrant you.
Pericles ’Tis most certain.
Cerimon Look to the lady; O, she’s but o’erjoy’d.
Early in blustering morn this lady was
Thrown upon this shore. I oped the coffin,
Found there rich jewels; recover’d her, and placed her
Here in Diana’s temple.
Pericles May we see them?
Cerimon Great sir, they shall be brought you to my house,
Whither I invite you. Look, Thaisa is recovered.
Thaisa O, let me look!
If he be none of mine, my sanctity
Will to my sense bend no licentious ear,
But curb it, spite of seeing. O, my lord,
Are you not Pericles? Like him you spake,
Like him you are: did you not name a tempest,
A birth, and death?
Pericles The voice of dead Thaisa!
Thaisa That Thaisa am I, supposed dead
Pericles Immortal Dian!
Thaisa Now I know you better.
When we with tears parted Pentapolis,
The king my father gave you such a ring.
Shows a ring
Pericles This, this: no more, you gods! your present kindness
Makes my past miseries sports: you shall do well,
That on the touching of her lips I may
Melt and no more be seen. O, come, be buried
A second time within these arms.
Marina My heart
Leaps to be gone into my mother’s bosom.
Kneels to Thaisa
Pericles Look, who kneels here! Flesh of thy flesh, Thaisa;
Thy burden at the sea, and call’d Marina
For she was yielded there.
Thaisa Blest, and mine own!
Helicanus Hail, madam, and my queen!
Thaisa I know you not.
Pericles You have heard me say, when I did fly from Tyre,
I left behind an ancient substitute:
Can you remember what I call’d the man?
I have named him oft.
Thaisa ’Twas Helicanus then.
Pericles Still confirmation:
Embrace him, dear Thaisa; this is he.
Now do I long to hear how you were found;
How possibly preserved; and who to thank,
Besides the gods, for this great miracle.
Thaisa Lord Cerimon, my lord; this man,
Through whom the gods have shown their power; that can
From first to last resolve you.
Pericles Reverend sir,
The gods can have no mortal officer
More like a god than you. Will you deliver
How this dead queen re-lives?
Cerimon I will, my lord.
Beseech you, first go with me to my house,
Where shall be shown you all was found with her;
How she came placed here in the temple;
No needful thing omitted.
Pericles Pure Dian, bless thee for thy vision! I
Will offer night-oblations to thee. Thaisa,
This prince, the fair-betrothed of your daughter,
Shall marry her at Pentapolis. And now,
Makes me look dismal will I clip to form;
And what this fourteen years no razor touch’d,
To grace thy marriage-day, I’ll beautify.
Thaisa Lord Cerimon hath letters of good credit, sir,
My father’s dead.
Pericles Heavens make a star of him! Yet there, my queen,
We’ll celebrate their nuptials, and ourselves
Will in that kingdom spend our following days:
Our son and daughter shall in Tyrus reign.
Lord Cerimon, we do our longing stay
To hear the rest untold: sir, lead’s the way.
Gower In Antiochus and his daughter you have heard
Of monstrous lust the due and just reward:
In Pericles, his queen and daughter, seen,
Although assail’d with fortune fierce and keen,
Virtue preserved from fell destruction’s blast,
Led on by heaven, and crown’d with joy at last:
In Helicanus may you well descry
A figure of truth, of faith, of loyalty:
In reverend Cerimon there well appears
The worth that learned charity aye wears:
For wicked Cleon and his wife, when fame
Had spread their cursed deed, and honour’d name
Of Pericles, to rage the city turn,
That him and his they in his palace burn;
The gods for murder seemed so content
To punish them; although not done, but meant.
So, on your patience evermore attending,
New joy wait on you! Here our play has ending.
This web edition published by:
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University of Adelaide
South Australia 5005
Last updated Tuesday, August 25, 2015 at 14:13