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Home > Tempest > ACT I - SCENE II. The island. Before PROSPERO'S cell.

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ACT I - SCENE II. The island. Before PROSPERO'S cell.

1    If by your art, my dearest father, you have
2    Put the wild waters in this roar, allay them.
3    The sky, it seems, would pour down stinking pitch,
4    But that the sea, mounting to the welkin's cheek,
5    Dashes the fire out. O, I have suffered
6    With those that I saw suffer: a brave vessel,
7    Who had, no doubt, some noble creature in her,
8    Dash'd all to pieces. O, the cry did knock
9    Against my very heart. Poor souls, they perish'd.
10   Had I been any god of power, I would
11   Have sunk the sea within the earth or ere
12   It should the good ship so have swallow'd and
13   The fraughting souls within her.
14   Be collected:
15   No more amazement: tell your piteous heart
16   There's no harm done.
17   O, woe the day!
18   No harm.
19   I have done nothing but in care of thee,
20   Of thee, my dear one, thee, my daughter, who
21   Art ignorant of what thou art, nought knowing
22   Of whence I am, nor that I am more better
23   Than Prospero, master of a full poor cell,
24   And thy no greater father.
25   More to know
26   Did never meddle with my thoughts.
27   'Tis time
28   I should inform thee farther. Lend thy hand,
29   And pluck my magic garment from me. So:
Lays down his mantle
30   Lie there, my art. Wipe thou thine eyes; have comfort.
31   The direful spectacle of the wreck, which touch'd
32   The very virtue of compassion in thee,
33   I have with such provision in mine art
34   So safely ordered that there is no soul--
35   No, not so much perdition as an hair
36   Betid to any creature in the vessel
37   Which thou heard'st cry, which thou saw'st sink. Sit down;
38   For thou must now know farther.
39   You have often
40   Begun to tell me what I am, but stopp'd
41   And left me to a bootless inquisition,
42   Concluding 'Stay: not yet.'
43   The hour's now come;
44   The very minute bids thee ope thine ear;
45   Obey and be attentive. Canst thou remember
46   A time before we came unto this cell?
47   I do not think thou canst, for then thou wast not
48   Out three years old.
49   Certainly, sir, I can.
50   By what? by any other house or person?
51   Of any thing the image tell me that
52   Hath kept with thy remembrance.
53   'Tis far off
54   And rather like a dream than an assurance
55   That my remembrance warrants. Had I not
56   Four or five women once that tended me?
57   Thou hadst, and more, Miranda. But how is it
58   That this lives in thy mind? What seest thou else
59   In the dark backward and abysm of time?
60   If thou remember'st aught ere thou camest here,
61   How thou camest here thou mayst.
62   But that I do not.
63   Twelve year since, Miranda, twelve year since,
64   Thy father was the Duke of Milan and
65   A prince of power.
66   Sir, are not you my father?
67   Thy mother was a piece of virtue, and
68   She said thou wast my daughter; and thy father
69   Was Duke of Milan; and thou his only heir
70   And princess no worse issued.
71   O the heavens!
72   What foul play had we, that we came from thence?
73   Or blessed was't we did?
74   Both, both, my girl:
75   By foul play, as thou say'st, were we heaved thence,
76   But blessedly holp hither.
77   O, my heart bleeds
78   To think o' the teen that I have turn'd you to,
79   Which is from my remembrance! Please you, farther.
80   My brother and thy uncle, call'd Antonio--
81   I pray thee, mark me--that a brother should
82   Be so perfidious!--he whom next thyself
83   Of all the world I loved and to him put
84   The manage of my state; as at that time
85   Through all the signories it was the first
86   And Prospero the prime duke, being so reputed
87   In dignity, and for the liberal arts
88   Without a parallel; those being all my study,
89   The government I cast upon my brother
90   And to my state grew stranger, being transported
91   And rapt in secret studies. Thy false uncle--
92   Dost thou attend me?
93   Sir, most heedfully.
94   Being once perfected how to grant suits,
95   How to deny them, who to advance and who
96   To trash for over-topping, new created
97   The creatures that were mine, I say, or changed 'em,
98   Or else new form'd 'em; having both the key
99   Of officer and office, set all hearts i' the state
100  To what tune pleased his ear; that now he was
101  The ivy which had hid my princely trunk,
102  And suck'd my verdure out on't. Thou attend'st not.
103  O, good sir, I do.
104  I pray thee, mark me.
105  I, thus neglecting worldly ends, all dedicated
106  To closeness and the bettering of my mind
107  With that which, but by being so retired,
108  O'er-prized all popular rate, in my false brother
109  Awaked an evil nature; and my trust,
110  Like a good parent, did beget of him
111  A falsehood in its contrary as great
112  As my trust was; which had indeed no limit,
113  A confidence sans bound. He being thus lorded,
114  Not only with what my revenue yielded,
115  But what my power might else exact, like one
116  Who having into truth, by telling of it,
117  Made such a sinner of his memory,
118  To credit his own lie, he did believe
119  He was indeed the duke; out o' the substitution
120  And executing the outward face of royalty,
121  With all prerogative: hence his ambition growing--
122  Dost thou hear?
123  Your tale, sir, would cure deafness.
124  To have no screen between this part he play'd
125  And him he play'd it for, he needs will be
126  Absolute Milan. Me, poor man, my library
127  Was dukedom large enough: of temporal royalties
128  He thinks me now incapable; confederates--
129  So dry he was for sway--wi' the King of Naples
130  To give him annual tribute, do him homage,
131  Subject his coronet to his crown and bend
132  The dukedom yet unbow'd--alas, poor Milan!--
133  To most ignoble stooping.
134  O the heavens!
135  Mark his condition and the event; then tell me
136  If this might be a brother.
137  I should sin
138  To think but nobly of my grandmother:
139  Good wombs have borne bad sons.
140  Now the condition.
141  The King of Naples, being an enemy
142  To me inveterate, hearkens my brother's suit;
143  Which was, that he, in lieu o' the premises
144  Of homage and I know not how much tribute,
145  Should presently extirpate me and mine
146  Out of the dukedom and confer fair Milan
147  With all the honours on my brother: whereon,
148  A treacherous army levied, one midnight
149  Fated to the purpose did Antonio open
150  The gates of Milan, and, i' the dead of darkness,
151  The ministers for the purpose hurried thence
152  Me and thy crying self.
153  Alack, for pity!
154  I, not remembering how I cried out then,
155  Will cry it o'er again: it is a hint
156  That wrings mine eyes to't.
157  Hear a little further
158  And then I'll bring thee to the present business
159  Which now's upon's; without the which this story
160  Were most impertinent.
161  Wherefore did they not
162  That hour destroy us?
163  Well demanded, wench:
164  My tale provokes that question. Dear, they durst not,
165  So dear the love my people bore me, nor set
166  A mark so bloody on the business, but
167  With colours fairer painted their foul ends.
168  In few, they hurried us aboard a bark,
169  Bore us some leagues to sea; where they prepared
170  A rotten carcass of a boat, not rigg'd,
171  Nor tackle, sail, nor mast; the very rats
172  Instinctively had quit it: there they hoist us,
173  To cry to the sea that roar'd to us, to sigh
174  To the winds whose pity, sighing back again,
175  Did us but loving wrong.
176  Alack, what trouble
177  Was I then to you!
178  O, a cherubim
179  Thou wast that did preserve me. Thou didst smile.
180  Infused with a fortitude from heaven,
181  When I have deck'd the sea with drops full salt,
182  Under my burthen groan'd; which raised in me
183  An undergoing stomach, to bear up
184  Against what should ensue.
185  How came we ashore?
186  By Providence divine.
187  Some food we had and some fresh water that
188  A noble Neapolitan, Gonzalo,
189  Out of his charity, being then appointed
190  Master of this design, did give us, with
191  Rich garments, linens, stuffs and necessaries,
192  Which since have steaded much; so, of his gentleness,
193  Knowing I loved my books, he furnish'd me
194  From mine own library with volumes that
195  I prize above my dukedom.
196  Would I might
197  But ever see that man!
198  Now I arise:
Resumes his mantle
199  Sit still, and hear the last of our sea-sorrow.
200  Here in this island we arrived; and here
201  Have I, thy schoolmaster, made thee more profit
202  Than other princesses can that have more time
203  For vainer hours and tutors not so careful.
204  Heavens thank you for't! And now, I pray you, sir,
205  For still 'tis beating in my mind, your reason
206  For raising this sea-storm?
207  Know thus far forth.
208  By accident most strange, bountiful Fortune,
209  Now my dear lady, hath mine enemies
210  Brought to this shore; and by my prescience
211  I find my zenith doth depend upon
212  A most auspicious star, whose influence
213  If now I court not but omit, my fortunes
214  Will ever after droop. Here cease more questions:
215  Thou art inclined to sleep; 'tis a good dulness,
216  And give it way: I know thou canst not choose.
MIRANDA sleeps
217  Come away, servant, come. I am ready now.
218  Approach, my Ariel, come.

219  All hail, great master! grave sir, hail! I come
220  To answer thy best pleasure; be't to fly,
221  To swim, to dive into the fire, to ride
222  On the curl'd clouds, to thy strong bidding task
223  Ariel and all his quality.
224  Hast thou, spirit,
225  Perform'd to point the tempest that I bade thee?
226  To every article.
227  I boarded the king's ship; now on the beak,
228  Now in the waist, the deck, in every cabin,
229  I flamed amazement: sometime I'ld divide,
230  And burn in many places; on the topmast,
231  The yards and bowsprit, would I flame distinctly,
232  Then meet and join. Jove's lightnings, the precursors
233  O' the dreadful thunder-claps, more momentary
234  And sight-outrunning were not; the fire and cracks
235  Of sulphurous roaring the most mighty Neptune
236  Seem to besiege and make his bold waves tremble,
237  Yea, his dread trident shake.
238  My brave spirit!
239  Who was so firm, so constant, that this coil
240  Would not infect his reason?
241  Not a soul
242  But felt a fever of the mad and play'd
243  Some tricks of desperation. All but mariners
244  Plunged in the foaming brine and quit the vessel,
245  Then all afire with me: the king's son, Ferdinand,
246  With hair up-staring,--then like reeds, not hair,--
247  Was the first man that leap'd; cried, 'Hell is empty
248  And all the devils are here.'
249  Why that's my spirit!
250  But was not this nigh shore?
251  Close by, my master.
252  But are they, Ariel, safe?
253  Not a hair perish'd;
254  On their sustaining garments not a blemish,
255  But fresher than before: and, as thou badest me,
256  In troops I have dispersed them 'bout the isle.
257  The king's son have I landed by himself;
258  Whom I left cooling of the air with sighs
259  In an odd angle of the isle and sitting,
260  His arms in this sad knot.
261  Of the king's ship
262  The mariners say how thou hast disposed
263  And all the rest o' the fleet.
264  Safely in harbour
265  Is the king's ship; in the deep nook, where once
266  Thou call'dst me up at midnight to fetch dew
267  From the still-vex'd Bermoothes, there she's hid:
268  The mariners all under hatches stow'd;
269  Who, with a charm join'd to their suffer'd labour,
270  I have left asleep; and for the rest o' the fleet
271  Which I dispersed, they all have met again
272  And are upon the Mediterranean flote,
273  Bound sadly home for Naples,
274  Supposing that they saw the king's ship wreck'd
275  And his great person perish.
276  Ariel, thy charge
277  Exactly is perform'd: but there's more work.
278  What is the time o' the day?
279  Past the mid season.
280  At least two glasses. The time 'twixt six and now
281  Must by us both be spent most preciously.
282  Is there more toil? Since thou dost give me pains,
283  Let me remember thee what thou hast promised,
284  Which is not yet perform'd me.
285  How now? moody?
286  What is't thou canst demand?
287  My liberty.
288  Before the time be out? no more!
289  I prithee,
290  Remember I have done thee worthy service;
291  Told thee no lies, made thee no mistakings, served
292  Without or grudge or grumblings: thou didst promise
293  To bate me a full year.
294  Dost thou forget
295  From what a torment I did free thee?
296  No.
297  Thou dost, and think'st it much to tread the ooze
298  Of the salt deep,
299  To run upon the sharp wind of the north,
300  To do me business in the veins o' the earth
301  When it is baked with frost.
302  I do not, sir.
303  Thou liest, malignant thing! Hast thou forgot
304  The foul witch Sycorax, who with age and envy
305  Was grown into a hoop? hast thou forgot her?
306  No, sir.
307  Thou hast. Where was she born? speak; tell me.
308  Sir, in Argier.
309  O, was she so? I must
310  Once in a month recount what thou hast been,
311  Which thou forget'st. This damn'd witch Sycorax,
312  For mischiefs manifold and sorceries terrible
313  To enter human hearing, from Argier,
314  Thou know'st, was banish'd: for one thing she did
315  They would not take her life. Is not this true?
316  Ay, sir.
317  This blue-eyed hag was hither brought with child
318  And here was left by the sailors. Thou, my slave,
319  As thou report'st thyself, wast then her servant;
320  And, for thou wast a spirit too delicate
321  To act her earthy and abhorr'd commands,
322  Refusing her grand hests, she did confine thee,
323  By help of her more potent ministers
324  And in her most unmitigable rage,
325  Into a cloven pine; within which rift
326  Imprison'd thou didst painfully remain
327  A dozen years; within which space she died
328  And left thee there; where thou didst vent thy groans
329  As fast as mill-wheels strike. Then was this island--
330  Save for the son that she did litter here,
331  A freckled whelp hag-born--not honour'd with
332  A human shape.
333  Yes, Caliban her son.
334  Dull thing, I say so; he, that Caliban
335  Whom now I keep in service. Thou best know'st
336  What torment I did find thee in; thy groans
337  Did make wolves howl and penetrate the breasts
338  Of ever angry bears: it was a torment
339  To lay upon the damn'd, which Sycorax
340  Could not again undo: it was mine art,
341  When I arrived and heard thee, that made gape
342  The pine and let thee out.
343  I thank thee, master.
344  If thou more murmur'st, I will rend an oak
345  And peg thee in his knotty entrails till
346  Thou hast howl'd away twelve winters.
347  Pardon, master;
348  I will be correspondent to command
349  And do my spiriting gently.
350  Do so, and after two days
351  I will discharge thee.
352  That's my noble master!
353  What shall I do? say what; what shall I do?
354  Go make thyself like a nymph o' the sea: be subject
355  To no sight but thine and mine, invisible
356  To every eyeball else. Go take this shape
357  And hither come in't: go, hence with diligence!
358  Awake, dear heart, awake! thou hast slept well; Awake!
359  The strangeness of your story put
360  Heaviness in me.
361  Shake it off. Come on;
362  We'll visit Caliban my slave, who never
363  Yields us kind answer.
364  'Tis a villain, sir,
365  I do not love to look on.
366  But, as 'tis,
367  We cannot miss him: he does make our fire,
368  Fetch in our wood and serves in offices
369  That profit us. What, ho! slave! Caliban!
370  Thou earth, thou! speak.
371   There's wood enough within.
372  Come forth, I say! there's other business for thee:
373  Come, thou tortoise! when?
Re-enter ARIEL like a water-nymph
374  Fine apparition! My quaint Ariel,
375  Hark in thine ear.
376  My lord it shall be done.

377  Thou poisonous slave, got by the devil himself
378  Upon thy wicked dam, come forth!

379  As wicked dew as e'er my mother brush'd
380  With raven's feather from unwholesome fen
381  Drop on you both! a south-west blow on ye
382  And blister you all o'er!
383  For this, be sure, to-night thou shalt have cramps,
384  Side-stitches that shall pen thy breath up; urchins
385  Shall, for that vast of night that they may work,
386  All exercise on thee; thou shalt be pinch'd
387  As thick as honeycomb, each pinch more stinging
388  Than bees that made 'em.
389  I must eat my dinner.
390  This island's mine, by Sycorax my mother,
391  Which thou takest from me. When thou camest first,
392  Thou strokedst me and madest much of me, wouldst give me
393  Water with berries in't, and teach me how
394  To name the bigger light, and how the less,
395  That burn by day and night: and then I loved thee
396  And show'd thee all the qualities o' the isle,
397  The fresh springs, brine-pits, barren place and fertile:
398  Cursed be I that did so! All the charms
399  Of Sycorax, toads, beetles, bats, light on you!
400  For I am all the subjects that you have,
401  Which first was mine own king: and here you sty me
402  In this hard rock, whiles you do keep from me
403  The rest o' the island.
404  Thou most lying slave,
405  Whom stripes may move, not kindness! I have used thee,
406  Filth as thou art, with human care, and lodged thee
407  In mine own cell, till thou didst seek to violate
408  The honour of my child.
409  O ho, O ho! would't had been done!
410  Thou didst prevent me; I had peopled else
411  This isle with Calibans.
412  Abhorred slave,
413  Which any print of goodness wilt not take,
414  Being capable of all ill! I pitied thee,
415  Took pains to make thee speak, taught thee each hour
416  One thing or other: when thou didst not, savage,
417  Know thine own meaning, but wouldst gabble like
418  A thing most brutish, I endow'd thy purposes
419  With words that made them known. But thy vile race,
420  Though thou didst learn, had that in't which
421  good natures
422  Could not abide to be with; therefore wast thou
423  Deservedly confined into this rock,
424  Who hadst deserved more than a prison.
425  You taught me language; and my profit on't
426  Is, I know how to curse. The red plague rid you
427  For learning me your language!
428  Hag-seed, hence!
429  Fetch us in fuel; and be quick, thou'rt best,
430  To answer other business. Shrug'st thou, malice?
431  If thou neglect'st or dost unwillingly
432  What I command, I'll rack thee with old cramps,
433  Fill all thy bones with aches, make thee roar
434  That beasts shall tremble at thy din.
435  No, pray thee.
436  I must obey: his art is of such power,
437  It would control my dam's god, Setebos,
438  and make a vassal of him.
439  So, slave; hence!
440  Come unto these yellow sands,
441  And then take hands:
442  Courtsied when you have and kiss'd
443  The wild waves whist,
444  Foot it featly here and there;
445  And, sweet sprites, the burthen bear.
446  Hark, hark!
Burthen (dispersedly, within) Bow-wow
447  The watch-dogs bark!
Burthen Bow-wow
448  Hark, hark! I hear
449  The strain of strutting chanticleer
450  Cry, Cock-a-diddle-dow.
451  Where should this music be? i' the air or the earth?
452  It sounds no more: and sure, it waits upon
453  Some god o' the island. Sitting on a bank,
454  Weeping again the king my father's wreck,
455  This music crept by me upon the waters,
456  Allaying both their fury and my passion
457  With its sweet air: thence I have follow'd it,
458  Or it hath drawn me rather. But 'tis gone.
459  No, it begins again.
ARIEL sings
460  Full fathom five thy father lies;
461  Of his bones are coral made;
462  Those are pearls that were his eyes:
463  Nothing of him that doth fade
464  But doth suffer a sea-change
465  Into something rich and strange.
466  Sea-nymphs hourly ring his knell
Burthen Ding-dong
467  Hark! now I hear them,--Ding-dong, bell.
468  The ditty does remember my drown'd father.
469  This is no mortal business, nor no sound
470  That the earth owes. I hear it now above me.
471  The fringed curtains of thine eye advance
472  And say what thou seest yond.
473  What is't? a spirit?
474  Lord, how it looks about! Believe me, sir,
475  It carries a brave form. But 'tis a spirit.
476  No, wench; it eats and sleeps and hath such senses
477  As we have, such. This gallant which thou seest
478  Was in the wreck; and, but he's something stain'd
479  With grief that's beauty's canker, thou mightst call him
480  A goodly person: he hath lost his fellows
481  And strays about to find 'em.
482  I might call him
483  A thing divine, for nothing natural
484  I ever saw so noble.
485   It goes on, I see,
486  As my soul prompts it. Spirit, fine spirit! I'll free thee
487  Within two days for this.
488  Most sure, the goddess
489  On whom these airs attend! Vouchsafe my prayer
490  May know if you remain upon this island;
491  And that you will some good instruction give
492  How I may bear me here: my prime request,
493  Which I do last pronounce, is, O you wonder!
494  If you be maid or no?
495  No wonder, sir;
496  But certainly a maid.
497  My language! heavens!
498  I am the best of them that speak this speech,
499  Were I but where 'tis spoken.
500  How? the best?
501  What wert thou, if the King of Naples heard thee?
502  A single thing, as I am now, that wonders
503  To hear thee speak of Naples. He does hear me;
504  And that he does I weep: myself am Naples,
505  Who with mine eyes, never since at ebb, beheld
506  The king my father wreck'd.
507  Alack, for mercy!
508  Yes, faith, and all his lords; the Duke of Milan
509  And his brave son being twain.
510   The Duke of Milan
511  And his more braver daughter could control thee,
512  If now 'twere fit to do't. At the first sight
513  They have changed eyes. Delicate Ariel,
514  I'll set thee free for this.
515  A word, good sir;
516  I fear you have done yourself some wrong: a word.
517  Why speaks my father so ungently? This
518  Is the third man that e'er I saw, the first
519  That e'er I sigh'd for: pity move my father
520  To be inclined my way!
521  O, if a virgin,
522  And your affection not gone forth, I'll make you
523  The queen of Naples.
524  Soft, sir! one word more.
525  They are both in either's powers; but this swift business
526  I must uneasy make, lest too light winning
527  Make the prize light.
528  One word more; I charge thee
529  That thou attend me: thou dost here usurp
530  The name thou owest not; and hast put thyself
531  Upon this island as a spy, to win it
532  From me, the lord on't.
533  No, as I am a man.
534  There's nothing ill can dwell in such a temple:
535  If the ill spirit have so fair a house,
536  Good things will strive to dwell with't.
537  Follow me.
538  Speak not you for him; he's a traitor. Come;
539  I'll manacle thy neck and feet together:
540  Sea-water shalt thou drink; thy food shall be
541  The fresh-brook muscles, wither'd roots and husks
542  Wherein the acorn cradled. Follow.
543  No;
544  I will resist such entertainment till
545  Mine enemy has more power.
Draws, and is charmed from moving

546  O dear father,
547  Make not too rash a trial of him, for
548  He's gentle and not fearful.
549  What? I say,
550  My foot my tutor? Put thy sword up, traitor;
551  Who makest a show but darest not strike, thy conscience
552  Is so possess'd with guilt: come from thy ward,
553  For I can here disarm thee with this stick
554  And make thy weapon drop.
555  Beseech you, father.
556  Hence! hang not on my garments.
557  Sir, have pity;
558  I'll be his surety.
559  Silence! one word more
560  Shall make me chide thee, if not hate thee. What!
561  An advocate for an imposter! hush!
562  Thou think'st there is no more such shapes as he,
563  Having seen but him and Caliban: foolish wench!
564  To the most of men this is a Caliban
565  And they to him are angels.
566  My affections
567  Are then most humble; I have no ambition
568  To see a goodlier man.
569  Come on; obey:
570  Thy nerves are in their infancy again
571  And have no vigour in them.
572  So they are;
573  My spirits, as in a dream, are all bound up.
574  My father's loss, the weakness which I feel,
575  The wreck of all my friends, nor this man's threats,
576  To whom I am subdued, are but light to me,
577  Might I but through my prison once a day
578  Behold this maid: all corners else o' the earth
579  Let liberty make use of; space enough
580  Have I in such a prison.
581   It works.
582  Come on.
583  Thou hast done well, fine Ariel!
584  Follow me.
585  Hark what thou else shalt do me.
586  Be of comfort;
587  My father's of a better nature, sir,
588  Than he appears by speech: this is unwonted
589  Which now came from him.
590  Thou shalt be free
591  As mountain winds: but then exactly do
592  All points of my command.
593  To the syllable.
594  Come, follow. Speak not for him.

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