Twelfth Night, by William Shakespeare


Scene I. Olivia’s garden.

Enter Viola, and Clown with a tabour

Viola Save thee, friend, and thy music: dost thou live by thy tabour?

Clown No, sir, I live by the church.

Viola Art thou a churchman?

Clown No such matter, sir: I do live by the church; for I do live at my house, and my house doth stand by the church.

Viola So thou mayst say, the king lies by a beggar, if a beggar dwell near him; or, the church stands by thy tabour, if thy tabour stand by the church.

Clown You have said, sir. To see this age! A sentence is but a cheveril glove to a good wit: how quickly the wrong side may be turned outward!

Viola Nay, that’s certain; they that dally nicely with words may quickly make them wanton.

Clown I would, therefore, my sister had had no name, sir.

Viola Why, man?

Clown Why, sir, her name’s a word; and to dally with that word might make my sister wanton. But indeed words are very rascals since bonds disgraced them.

Viola Thy reason, man?

Clown Troth, sir, I can yield you none without words; and words are grown so false, I am loath to prove reason with them.

Viola I warrant thou art a merry fellow and carest for nothing.

Clown Not so, sir, I do care for something; but in my conscience, sir, I do not care for you: if that be to care for nothing, sir, I would it would make you invisible.

Viola Art not thou the Lady Olivia’s fool?

Clown No, indeed, sir; the Lady Olivia has no folly: she will keep no fool, sir, till she be married; and fools are as like husbands as pilchards are to herrings; the husband’s the bigger: I am indeed not her fool, but her corrupter of words.

Viola I saw thee late at the Count Orsino’s.

Clown Foolery, sir, does walk about the orb like the sun, it shines every where. I would be sorry, sir, but the fool should be as oft with your master as with my mistress: I think I saw your wisdom there.

Viola Nay, an thou pass upon me, I’ll no more with thee.
Hold, there’s expenses for thee.

Clown Now Jove, in his next commodity of hair, send thee a beard!

Viola By my troth, I’ll tell thee, I am almost sick for one;


though I would not have it grow on my chin. Is thy lady within?

Clown Would not a pair of these have bred, sir?

Viola Yes, being kept together and put to use.

Clown I would play Lord Pandarus of Phrygia, sir, to bring a Cressida to this Troilus.

Viola I understand you, sir; ’tis well begged.

Clown The matter, I hope, is not great, sir, begging but a beggar: Cressida was a beggar. My lady is within, sir. I will construe to them whence you come; who you are and what you would are out of my welkin, I might say ‘element,’ but the word is over-worn.


Viola This fellow is wise enough to play the fool;
And to do that well craves a kind of wit:
He must observe their mood on whom he jests,
The quality of persons, and the time,
And, like the haggard, cheque at every feather
That comes before his eye. This is a practise
As full of labour as a wise man’s art
For folly that he wisely shows is fit;
But wise men, folly-fall’n, quite taint their wit.

Enter Sir Toby Belch, and Sir Andrew

Sir Toby Belch Save you, gentleman.

Viola And you, sir.

Sir Andrew Dieu vous garde, monsieur.

Viola Et vous aussi; votre serviteur.

Sir Andrew I hope, sir, you are; and I am yours.

Sir Toby Belch Will you encounter the house? my niece is desirous you should enter, if your trade be to her.

Viola I am bound to your niece, sir; I mean, she is the list of my voyage.

Sir Toby Belch Taste your legs, sir; put them to motion.

Viola My legs do better understand me, sir, than I understand what you mean by bidding me taste my legs.

Sir Toby Belch I mean, to go, sir, to enter.

Viola I will answer you with gait and entrance. But we are prevented.

Enter Olivia and Maria

Most excellent accomplished lady, the heavens rain odours on you!

Sir Andrew That youth’s a rare courtier: ‘Rain odours;’ well.

Viola My matter hath no voice, to your own most pregnant and vouchsafed ear.

Sir Andrew ‘Odours,’ ‘pregnant’ and ‘vouchsafed:’ I’ll get ’em all three all ready.

Olivia Let the garden door be shut, and leave me to my hearing.

Exeunt Sir Toby Belch, Sir Andrew, and Maria

Give me your hand, sir.

Viola My duty, madam, and most humble service.

Olivia What is your name?

Viola Cesario is your servant’s name, fair princess.

Olivia My servant, sir! ’Twas never merry world
Since lowly feigning was call’d compliment:
You’re servant to the Count Orsino, youth.

Viola And he is yours, and his must needs be yours:
Your servant’s servant is your servant, madam.

Olivia For him, I think not on him: for his thoughts,
Would they were blanks, rather than fill’d with me!

Viola Madam, I come to whet your gentle thoughts
On his behalf.

Olivia   O, by your leave, I pray you,
I bade you never speak again of him:
But, would you undertake another suit,
I had rather hear you to solicit that
Than music from the spheres.

Viola Dear lady  —

Olivia Give me leave, beseech you. I did send,
After the last enchantment you did here,
A ring in chase of you: so did I abuse
Myself, my servant and, I fear me, you:
Under your hard construction must I sit,
To force that on you, in a shameful cunning,
Which you knew none of yours: what might you think?
Have you not set mine honour at the stake
And baited it with all the unmuzzled thoughts
That tyrannous heart can think? To one of your receiving
Enough is shown: a cypress, not a bosom,
Hideth my heart. So, let me hear you speak.

Viola I pity you.

Olivia   That’s a degree to love.

Viola No, not a grize; for ’tis a vulgar proof,
That very oft we pity enemies.

Olivia Why, then, methinks ’tis time to smile again.
O, world, how apt the poor are to be proud!
If one should be a prey, how much the better
To fall before the lion than the wolf!

Clock strikes

The clock upbraids me with the waste of time.
Be not afraid, good youth, I will not have you:
And yet, when wit and youth is come to harvest,
Your were is alike to reap a proper man:
There lies your way, due west.

Viola Then westward-ho! Grace and good disposition
Attend your ladyship!
You’ll nothing, madam, to my lord by me?

Olivia Stay:
I prithee, tell me what thou thinkest of me.

Viola That you do think you are not what you are.

Olivia If I think so, I think the same of you.

Viola Then think you right: I am not what I am.

Olivia I would you were as I would have you be!

Viola Would it be better, madam, than I am?
I wish it might, for now I am your fool.

Olivia O, what a deal of scorn looks beautiful
In the contempt and anger of his lip!
A murderous guilt shows not itself more soon
Than love that would seem hid: love’s night is noon.
Cesario, by the roses of the spring,
By maidhood, honour, truth and every thing,
I love thee so, that, maugre all thy pride,
Nor wit nor reason can my passion hide.
Do not extort thy reasons from this clause,
For that I woo, thou therefore hast no cause,
But rather reason thus with reason fetter,
Love sought is good, but given unsought better.

Viola By innocence I swear, and by my youth
I have one heart, one bosom and one truth,
And that no woman has; nor never none
Shall mistress be of it, save I alone.
And so adieu, good madam: never more
Will I my master’s tears to you deplore.

Olivia Yet come again; for thou perhaps mayst move
That heart, which now abhors, to like his love.


Scene II. Olivia’s house.

Enter Sir Toby Belch, Sir Andrew, and Fabian

Sir Andrew No, faith, I’ll not stay a jot longer.

Sir Toby Belch Thy reason, dear venom, give thy reason.

Fabian You must needs yield your reason, Sir Andrew.

Sir Andrew Marry, I saw your niece do more favours to the count’s serving-man than ever she bestowed upon me; I saw’t i’ the orchard.

Sir Toby Belch Did she see thee the while, old boy? tell me that.

Sir Andrew As plain as I see you now.

Fabian This was a great argument of love in her toward you.

Sir Andrew ’Slight, will you make an ass o’ me?

Fabian I will prove it legitimate, sir, upon the oaths of judgment and reason.

Sir Toby Belch And they have been grand-jury-men since before Noah was a sailor.

Fabian She did show favour to the youth in your sight only to exasperate you, to awake your dormouse valour, to put fire in your heart and brimstone in your liver. You should then have accosted her; and with some excellent jests, fire-new from the mint, you should have banged the youth into dumbness. This was looked for at your hand, and this was balked: the double gilt of this opportunity you let time wash off, and you are now sailed into the north of my lady’s opinion; where you will hang like an icicle on a Dutchman’s beard, unless you do redeem it by some laudable attempt either of valour or policy.

Sir Andrew An’t be any way, it must be with valour; for policy I hate: I had as lief be a Brownist as a politician.

Sir Toby Belch Why, then, build me thy fortunes upon the basis of valour. Challenge me the count’s youth to fight with him; hurt him in eleven places: my niece shall take note of it; and assure thyself, there is no love-broker in the world can more prevail in man’s commendation with woman than report of valour.

Fabian There is no way but this, Sir Andrew.

Sir Andrew Will either of you bear me a challenge to him?

Sir Toby Belch Go, write it in a martial hand; be curst and brief; it is no matter how witty, so it be eloquent and fun of invention: taunt him with the licence of ink: if thou thou’st him some thrice, it shall not be amiss; and as many lies as will lie in thy sheet of paper, although the sheet were big enough for the bed of Ware in England, set ’em down: go, about it. Let there be gall enough in thy ink, though thou write with a goose-pen, no matter: about it.

Sir Andrew Where shall I find you?

Sir Toby Belch We’ll call thee at the cubiculo: go.

Exit Sir Andrew

Fabian This is a dear manikin to you, Sir Toby.

Sir Toby Belch I have been dear to him, lad, some two thousand strong, or so.

Fabian We shall have a rare letter from him: but you’ll not deliver’t?

Sir Toby Belch Never trust me, then; and by all means stir on the youth to an answer. I think oxen and wainropes cannot hale them together. For Andrew, if he were opened, and you find so much blood in his liver as will clog the foot of a flea, I’ll eat the rest of the anatomy.

Fabian And his opposite, the youth, bears in his visage no great presage of cruelty.

Enter Maria

Sir Toby Belch Look, where the youngest wren of nine comes.

Maria If you desire the spleen, and will laugh yourself into stitches, follow me. Yond gull Malvolio is turned heathen, a very renegado; for there is no Christian, that means to be saved by believing rightly, can ever believe such impossible passages of grossness. He’s in yellow stockings.

Sir Toby Belch And cross-gartered?

Maria Most villanously; like a pedant that keeps a school i’ the church. I have dogged him, like his murderer. He does obey every point of the letter that I dropped to betray him: he does smile his face into more lines than is in the new map with the augmentation of the Indies: you have not seen such a thing as ’tis. I can hardly forbear hurling things at him. I know my lady will strike him: if she do, he’ll smile and take’t for a great favour.

Sir Toby Belch Come, bring us, bring us where he is.


Scene III. A street.

Enter Sebastian and Antonio

Sebastian I would not by my will have troubled you;
But, since you make your pleasure of your pains,
I will no further chide you.

Antonio I could not stay behind you: my desire,
More sharp than filed steel, did spur me forth;
And not all love to see you, though so much
As might have drawn one to a longer voyage,
But jealousy what might befall your travel,
Being skilless in these parts; which to a stranger,
Unguided and unfriended, often prove
Rough and unhospitable: my willing love,
The rather by these arguments of fear,
Set forth in your pursuit.

Sebastian My kind Antonio,
I can no other answer make but thanks,
And thanks; and ever [ . . . ] oft good turns
Are shuffled off with such uncurrent pay:
But, were my worth as is my conscience firm,
You should find better dealing. What’s to do?
Shall we go see the reliques of this town?

Antonio To-morrow, sir: best first go see your lodging.

Sebastian I am not weary, and ’tis long to night:
I pray you, let us satisfy our eyes
With the memorials and the things of fame
That do renown this city.

Antonio Would you’ld pardon me;
I do not without danger walk these streets:
Once, in a sea-fight, ’gainst the count his galleys
I did some service; of such note indeed,
That were I ta’en here it would scarce be answer’d.

Sebastian Belike you slew great number of his people.

Antonio The offence is not of such a bloody nature;
Albeit the quality of the time and quarrel
Might well have given us bloody argument.
It might have since been answer’d in repaying
What we took from them; which, for traffic’s sake,
Most of our city did: only myself stood out;
For which, if I be lapsed in this place,
I shall pay dear.

Sebastian   Do not then walk too open.

Antonio It doth not fit me. Hold, sir, here’s my purse.
In the south suburbs, at the Elephant,
Is best to lodge: I will bespeak our diet,
Whiles you beguile the time and feed your knowledge
With viewing of the town: there shall you have me.

Sebastian Why I your purse?

Antonio Haply your eye shall light upon some toy
You have desire to purchase; and your store,
I think, is not for idle markets, sir.

Sebastian I’ll be your purse-bearer and leave you
For an hour.

Antonio To the Elephant.

Sebastian   I do remember.


Scene IV. Olivia’s garden.

Enter Olivia and Maria

Olivia I have sent after him: he says he’ll come;
How shall I feast him? what bestow of him?
For youth is bought more oft than begg’d or borrow’d.
I speak too loud.
Where is Malvolio? he is sad and civil,
And suits well for a servant with my fortunes:
Where is Malvolio?

Maria He’s coming, madam; but in very strange manner. He is, sure, possessed, madam.

Olivia Why, what’s the matter? does he rave?

Maria No. madam, he does nothing but smile: your ladyship were best to have some guard about you, if he come; for, sure, the man is tainted in’s wits.

Olivia Go call him hither.

Exit Maria

I am as mad as he,
If sad and merry madness equal be.

Re-enter Maria, with Malvolio

How now, Malvolio!

Malvolio Sweet lady, ho, ho.

Olivia Smilest thou?
I sent for thee upon a sad occasion.

Malvolio Sad, lady! I could be sad: this does make some obstruction in the blood, this cross-gartering; but what of that? if it please the eye of one, it is with me as the very true sonnet is, ‘Please one, and please all.’

Olivia Why, how dost thou, man? what is the matter with thee?

Malvolio Not black in my mind, though yellow in my legs. It did come to his hands, and commands shall be executed: I think we do know the sweet Roman hand.

Olivia Wilt thou go to bed, Malvolio?

Malvolio To bed! ay, sweet-heart, and I’ll come to thee.

Olivia God comfort thee! Why dost thou smile so and kiss thy hand so oft?

Maria How do you, Malvolio?

Malvolio At your request! yes; nightingales answer daws.

Maria Why appear you with this ridiculous boldness before my lady?

Malvolio ‘Be not afraid of greatness:’ ’twas well writ.

Olivia What meanest thou by that, Malvolio?

Malvolio ‘some are born great,’—

Olivia Ha!

Malvolio ‘some achieve greatness,’—

Olivia What sayest thou?

Malvolio ‘And some have greatness thrust upon them.’

Olivia Heaven restore thee!

Malvolio ‘Remember who commended thy yellow stocking s,’—

Olivia Thy yellow stockings!

Malvolio ‘And wished to see thee cross-gartered.’

Olivia Cross-gartered!

Malvolio ‘Go to thou art made, if thou desirest to be so;’—

Olivia Am I made?

Malvolio ‘If not, let me see thee a servant still.’

Olivia Why, this is very midsummer madness.

Enter Servant

Servant Madam, the young gentleman of the Count Orsino’s is returned: I could hardly entreat him back: he attends your ladyship’s pleasure.

Olivia I’ll come to him.

Exit Servant

Good Maria, let this fellow be looked to. Where’s my cousin Toby? Let some of my people have a special care of him: I would not have him miscarry for the half of my dowry.

Exeunt Olivia and Maria

Malvolio O, ho! do you come near me now? no worse man than Sir Toby to look to me! This concurs directly with the letter: she sends him on purpose, that I may appear stubborn to him; for she incites me to that in the letter. ‘Cast thy humble slough,’ says she; ‘be opposite with a kinsman, surly with servants; let thy tongue tang with arguments of state; put thyself into the trick of singularity;’ and consequently sets down the manner how; as, a sad face, a reverend carriage, a slow tongue, in the habit of some sir of note, and so forth. I have limed her; but it is Jove’s doing, and Jove make me thankful! And when she went away now, ‘Let this fellow be looked to:’ fellow! not Malvolio, nor after my degree, but fellow. Why, every thing adheres together, that no dram of a scruple, no scruple of a scruple, no obstacle, no incredulous or unsafe circumstance — What can be said? Nothing that can be can come between me and the full prospect of my hopes. Well, Jove, not I, is the doer of this, and he is to be thanked.

Re-enter Maria, with Sir Toby Belch and Fabian

Sir Toby Belch Which way is he, in the name of sanctity? If all the devils of hell be drawn in little, and Legion himself possessed him, yet I’ll speak to him.

Fabian Here he is, here he is. How is’t with you, sir? how is’t with you, man?

Malvolio Go off; I discard you: let me enjoy my private: go off.

Maria Lo, how hollow the fiend speaks within him! did not I tell you? Sir Toby, my lady prays you to have a care of him.

Malvolio Ah, ha! does she so?

Sir Toby Belch Go to, go to; peace, peace; we must deal gently with him: let me alone. How do you, Malvolio? how is’t with you? What, man! defy the devil: consider, he’s an enemy to mankind.

Malvolio Do you know what you say?

Maria La you, an you speak ill of the devil, how he takes it at heart! Pray God, he be not bewitched!

Fabian Carry his water to the wise woman.

Maria Marry, and it shall be done to-morrow morning, if I live. My lady would not lose him for more than I’ll say.

Malvolio How now, mistress!

Maria O Lord!

Sir Toby Belch Prithee, hold thy peace; this is not the way: do you not see you move him? let me alone with him.

Fabian No way but gentleness; gently, gently: the fiend is rough, and will not be roughly used.

Sir Toby Belch Why, how now, my bawcock! how dost thou, chuck?

Malvolio Sir!

Sir Toby Belch Ay, Biddy, come with me. What, man! ’tis not for gravity to play at cherry-pit with Satan: hang him, foul collier!

Maria Get him to say his prayers, good Sir Toby, get him to pray.

Malvolio My prayers, minx!

Maria No, I warrant you, he will not hear of godliness.

Malvolio Go, hang yourselves all! you are idle shallow things: I am not of your element: you shall know more hereafter.


Sir Toby Belch Is’t possible?

Fabian If this were played upon a stage now, I could condemn it as an improbable fiction.

Sir Toby Belch His very genius hath taken the infection of the device, man.

Maria Nay, pursue him now, lest the device take air and taint.

Fabian Why, we shall make him mad indeed.

Maria The house will be the quieter.

Sir Toby Belch Come, we’ll have him in a dark room and bound. My niece is already in the belief that he’s mad: we may carry it thus, for our pleasure and his penance, till our very pastime, tired out of breath, prompt us to have mercy on him: at which time we will bring the device to the bar and crown thee for a finder of madmen. But see, but see.

Enter Sir Andrew

Fabian More matter for a May morning.

Sir Andrew Here’s the challenge, read it: warrant there’s vinegar and pepper in’t.

Fabian Is’t so saucy?

Sir Andrew Ay, is’t, I warrant him: do but read.

Sir Toby Belch Give me.


‘Youth, whatsoever thou art, thou art but a scurvy fellow.’

Fabian Good, and valiant.

Sir Toby Belch [Reads] ‘Wonder not, nor admire not in thy mind, why I do call thee so, for I will show thee no reason for’t.’

Fabian A good note; that keeps you from the blow of the law.

Sir Toby Belch [Reads] ‘Thou comest to the lady Olivia, and in my sight she uses thee kindly: but thou liest in thy throat; that is not the matter I challenge thee for.’

Fabian Very brief, and to exceeding good sense — less.

Sir Toby Belch [Reads] ‘I will waylay thee going home; where if it be thy chance to kill me,’—

Fabian Good.

Sir Toby Belch [Reads] ‘Thou killest me like a rogue and a villain.’

Fabian Still you keep o’ the windy side of the law: good.

Sir Toby Belch [Reads] ‘Fare thee well; and God have mercy upon one of our souls! He may have mercy upon mine; but my hope is better, and so look to thyself. Thy friend, as thou usest him, and thy sworn enemy,
Andrew Aguecheek.’

If this letter move him not, his legs cannot:
I’ll give’t him.

Maria You may have very fit occasion for’t: he is now in some commerce with my lady, and will by and by depart.

Sir Toby Belch Go, Sir Andrew: scout me for him at the corner the orchard like a bum-baily: so soon as ever thou seest him, draw; and, as thou drawest swear horrible; for it comes to pass oft that a terrible oath, with a swaggering accent sharply twanged off, gives manhood more approbation than ever proof itself would have earned him. Away!

Sir Andrew Nay, let me alone for swearing.


Sir Toby Belch Now will not I deliver his letter: for the behavior of the young gentleman gives him out to be of good capacity and breeding; his employment between his lord and my niece confirms no less: therefore this letter, being so excellently ignorant, will breed no terror in the youth: he will find it comes from a clodpole. But, sir, I will deliver his challenge by word of mouth; set upon Aguecheek a notable report of valour; and drive the gentleman, as I know his youth will aptly receive it, into a most hideous opinion of his rage, skill, fury and impetuosity. This will so fright them both that they will kill one another by the look, like cockatrices.

Re-enter Olivia, with Viola

Fabian Here he comes with your niece: give them way till he take leave, and presently after him.

Sir Toby Belch I will meditate the while upon some horrid message for a challenge.

Exeunt Sir Toby Belch, Fabian, and Maria

Olivia I have said too much unto a heart of stone
And laid mine honour too unchary out:
There’s something in me that reproves my fault;
But such a headstrong potent fault it is,
That it but mocks reproof.

Viola With the same ’havior that your passion bears
Goes on my master’s grief.

Olivia Here, wear this jewel for me, ’tis my picture;
Refuse it not; it hath no tongue to vex you;
And I beseech you come again to-morrow.
What shall you ask of me that I’ll deny,
That honour saved may upon asking give?

Viola Nothing but this; your true love for my master.

Olivia How with mine honour may I give him that
Which I have given to you?

Viola I will acquit you.

Olivia Well, come again to-morrow: fare thee well:
A fiend like thee might bear my soul to hell.


Re-enter Sir Toby Belch and Fabian

Sir Toby Belch Gentleman, God save thee.

Viola And you, sir.

Sir Toby Belch That defence thou hast, betake thee to’t: of what nature the wrongs are thou hast done him, I know not; but thy intercepter, full of despite, bloody as the hunter, attends thee at the orchard-end: dismount thy tuck, be yare in thy preparation, for thy assailant is quick, skilful and deadly.

Viola You mistake, sir; I am sure no man hath any quarrel to me: my remembrance is very free and clear from any image of offence done to any man.

Sir Toby Belch You’ll find it otherwise, I assure you: therefore, if you hold your life at any price, betake you to your guard; for your opposite hath in him what youth, strength, skill and wrath can furnish man withal.

Viola I pray you, sir, what is he?

Sir Toby Belch He is knight, dubbed with unhatched rapier and on carpet consideration; but he is a devil in private brawl: souls and bodies hath he divorced three; and his incensement at this moment is so implacable, that satisfaction can be none but by pangs of death and sepulchre. Hob, nob, is his word; give’t or take’t.

Viola I will return again into the house and desire some conduct of the lady. I am no fighter. I have heard of some kind of men that put quarrels purposely on others, to taste their valour: belike this is a man of that quirk.

Sir Toby Belch Sir, no; his indignation derives itself out of a very competent injury: therefore, get you on and give him his desire. Back you shall not to the house, unless you undertake that with me which with as much safety you might answer him: therefore, on, or strip your sword stark naked; for meddle you must, that’s certain, or forswear to wear iron about you.

Viola This is as uncivil as strange. I beseech you, do me this courteous office, as to know of the knight what my offence to him is: it is something of my negligence, nothing of my purpose.

Sir Toby Belch I will do so. Signior Fabian, stay you by this gentleman till my return.


Viola Pray you, sir, do you know of this matter?

Fabian I know the knight is incensed against you, even to a mortal arbitrement; but nothing of the circumstance more.

Viola I beseech you, what manner of man is he?

Fabian Nothing of that wonderful promise, to read him by his form, as you are like to find him in the proof of his valour. He is, indeed, sir, the most skilful, bloody and fatal opposite that you could possibly have found in any part of Illyria. Will you walk towards him? I will make your peace with him if I can.

Viola I shall be much bound to you for’t: I am one that had rather go with sir priest than sir knight: I care not who knows so much of my mettle.


Re-enter Sir Toby Belch, with Sir Andrew

Sir Toby Belch Why, man, he’s a very devil; I have not seen such a firago. I had a pass with him, rapier, scabbard and all, and he gives me the stuck in with such a mortal motion, that it is inevitable; and on the answer, he pays you as surely as your feet hit the ground they step on. They say he has been fencer to the Sophy.

Sir Andrew Pox on’t, I’ll not meddle with him.

Sir Toby Belch Ay, but he will not now be pacified: Fabian can scarce hold him yonder.

Sir Andrew Plague on’t, an I thought he had been valiant and so cunning in fence, I’ld have seen him damned ere I’ld have challenged him. Let him let the matter slip, and I’ll give him my horse, grey Capilet.

Sir Toby Belch I’ll make the motion: stand here, make a good show on’t: this shall end without the perdition of souls.


Marry, I’ll ride your horse as well as I ride you.

Re-enter Fabian and Viola

To Fabian

I have his horse to take up the quarrel:
I have persuaded him the youth’s a devil.

Fabian He is as horribly conceited of him; and pants and looks pale, as if a bear were at his heels.

Sir Toby Belch [To Viola] There’s no remedy, sir; he will fight with you for’s oath sake: marry, he hath better bethought him of his quarrel, and he finds that now scarce to be worth talking of: therefore draw, for the supportance of his vow; he protests he will not hurt you.

Viola [Aside] Pray God defend me! A little thing would make me tell them how much I lack of a man.

Fabian Give ground, if you see him furious.

Sir Toby Belch Come, Sir Andrew, there’s no remedy; the gentleman will, for his honour’s sake, have one bout with you; he cannot by the duello avoid it: but he has promised me, as he is a gentleman and a soldier, he will not hurt you. Come on; to’t.

Sir Andrew Pray God, he keep his oath!

Viola I do assure you, ’tis against my will.

They draw

Enter Antonio

Antonio Put up your sword. If this young gentleman
Have done offence, I take the fault on me:
If you offend him, I for him defy you.

Sir Toby Belch You, sir! why, what are you?

Antonio One, sir, that for his love dares yet do more
Than you have heard him brag to you he will.

Sir Toby Belch Nay, if you be an undertaker, I am for you.

They draw

Enter Officers

Fabian O good Sir Toby, hold! here come the officers.

Sir Toby Belch I’ll be with you anon.

Viola Pray, sir, put your sword up, if you please.

Sir Andrew Marry, will I, sir; and, for that I promised you, I’ll be as good as my word: he will bear you easily and reins well.

First Officer This is the man; do thy office.

Second Officer Antonio, I arrest thee at the suit of Count Orsino.

Antonio You do mistake me, sir.

First Officer No, sir, no jot; I know your favour well,
Though now you have no sea-cap on your head.
Take him away: he knows I know him well.

Antonio I must obey.

To Viola

This comes with seeking you:
But there’s no remedy; I shall answer it.
What will you do, now my necessity
Makes me to ask you for my purse? It grieves me
Much more for what I cannot do for you
Than what befalls myself. You stand amazed;
But be of comfort.

Second Officer Come, sir, away.

Antonio I must entreat of you some of that money.

Viola What money, sir?
For the fair kindness you have show’d me here,
And, part, being prompted by your present trouble,
Out of my lean and low ability
I’ll lend you something: my having is not much;
I’ll make division of my present with you:
Hold, there’s half my coffer.

Antonio Will you deny me now?
Is’t possible that my deserts to you
Can lack persuasion? Do not tempt my misery,
Lest that it make me so unsound a man
As to upbraid you with those kindnesses
That I have done for you.

Viola I know of none;
Nor know I you by voice or any feature:
I hate ingratitude more in a man
Than lying, vainness, babbling, drunkenness,
Or any taint of vice whose strong corruption
Inhabits our frail blood.

Antonio O heavens themselves!

Second Officer Come, sir, I pray you, go.

Antonio Let me speak a little. This youth that you see here
I snatch’d one half out of the jaws of death,
Relieved him with such sanctity of love,
And to his image, which methought did promise
Most venerable worth, did I devotion.

First Officer What’s that to us? The time goes by: away!

Antonio But O how vile an idol proves this god
Thou hast, Sebastian, done good feature shame.
In nature there’s no blemish but the mind;
None can be call’d deform’d but the unkind:
Virtue is beauty, but the beauteous evil
Are empty trunks o’erflourish’d by the devil.

First Officer The man grows mad: away with him! Come, come, sir.

Antonio Lead me on.

Exit with Officers

Viola Methinks his words do from such passion fly,
That he believes himself: so do not I.
Prove true, imagination, O, prove true,
That I, dear brother, be now ta’en for you!

Sir Toby Belch Come hither, knight; come hither, Fabian: we’ll whisper o’er a couplet or two of most sage saws.

Viola He named Sebastian: I my brother know
Yet living in my glass; even such and so
In favour was my brother, and he went
Still in this fashion, colour, ornament,
For him I imitate: O, if it prove,
Tempests are kind and salt waves fresh in love.


Sir Toby Belch A very dishonest paltry boy, and more a coward than a hare: his dishonesty appears in leaving his friend here in necessity and denying him; and for his cowardship, ask Fabian.

Fabian A coward, a most devout coward, religious in it.

Sir Andrew ’Slid, I’ll after him again and beat him.

Sir Toby Belch Do; cuff him soundly, but never draw thy sword.

Sir Andrew An I do not  —

Fabian Come, let’s see the event.

Sir Toby Belch I dare lay any money ’twill be nothing yet.


Last updated Sunday, March 27, 2016 at 11:59