Pentapolis. An open place by the sea-side.
Enter PERICLES, wet
1 Yet cease your ire, you angry stars of heaven!
2 Wind, rain, and thunder, remember, earthly man
3 Is but a substance that must yield to you;
4 And I, as fits my nature, do obey you:
5 Alas, the sea hath cast me on the rocks,
6 Wash'd me from shore to shore, and left me breath
7 Nothing to think on but ensuing death:
8 Let it suffice the greatness of your powers
9 To have bereft a prince of all his fortunes;
10 And having thrown him from your watery grave,
11 Here to have death in peace is all he'll crave.
Enter three FISHERMEN
12 What, ho, Pilch!
13 Ha, come and bring away the nets!
14 What, Patch-breech, I say!
15 What say you, master?
16 Look how thou stirrest now! come away, or I'll
17 fetch thee with a wanion.
18 Faith, master, I am thinking of the poor men that
19 were cast away before us even now.
20 Alas, poor souls, it grieved my heart to hear what
21 pitiful cries they made to us to help them, when,
22 well-a-day, we could scarce help ourselves.
23 Nay, master, said not I as much when I saw the
24 porpus how he bounced and tumbled? they say
25 they're half fish, half flesh: a plague on them,
26 they ne'er come but I look to be washed. Master, I
27 marvel how the fishes live in the sea.
28 Why, as men do a-land; the great ones eat up the
29 compare our rich misers to
30 nothing so fitly as to a whale; a' plays and
31 tumbles, driving the poor fry before him, and at
32 last devours them all at a mouthful: such whales
33 have I heard on o' the land, who never leave gaping
34 till they've swallowed the whole parish, church,
35 steeple, bells, and all.
36 Aside A pretty moral.
37 But, master, if I had been the sexton, I would have
38 been that day in the belfry.
39 Why, man?
40 Because he should have swallowed me too: and when I
41 had been in his belly, I would have kept such a
42 jangling of the bells, that he should never have
43 left, till he cast bells, steeple, church, and
44 parish up again. But if the good King Simonides
45 were of my mind,--
46 Aside Simonides!
47 We would purge the land of these drones, that rob
48 the bee of her honey.
49 Aside How from the finny subject of the sea
50 These fishers tell the infirmities of men;
51 And from their watery empire recollect
52 All that may men detect!
53 Peace be at your labour, honest fishermen.
54 Honest! good fellow, what's that? If it be a day
55 fits you, search out of the calendar, and nobody
56 look after it.
57 May see the sea hath cast upon your coast.
58 What a drunken knave was the sea to cast thee in our
60 A man whom both the waters and the wind,
61 In that vast tennis-court, have made the ball
62 For them to play upon, entreats you pity him:
63 He asks of you, that never used to beg.
64 No, friend, cannot you beg? Here's them in our
65 country Greece gets more with begging than we can do
66 with working.
67 Canst thou catch any fishes, then?
68 I never practised it.
69 Nay, then thou wilt starve, sure; for here's nothing
70 to be got now-a-days, unless thou canst fish for't.
71 What I have been I have forgot to know;
72 But what I am, want teaches me to think on:
73 A man throng'd up with cold: my veins are chill,
74 And have no more of life than may suffice
75 To give my tongue that ask your help;
76 Which if you shall refuse, when I am dead,
77 For that I am a man, pray see me buried.
78 Die quoth-a? Now gods forbid! I have a gown here;
79 come, keep thee warm. Now, afore me, a
80 handsome fellow! Come, thou shalt go home, and
81 we'll have flesh for holidays, fish for
82 fasting-days, and moreo'er puddings and flap-jacks,
83 and thou shalt be welcome.
84 I thank you, sir.
85 Hark you, my friend; you said you could not beg.
86 I did but crave.
87 But crave! Then I'll turn craver too, and so I
88 shall 'scape whipping.
89 Why, are all your beggars whipped, then?
90 O, not all, my friend, not all; for if all your
91 beggars were whipped, I would office
92 than to be beadle. But, master, I'll go draw up the
Exit with Third Fisherman
94 Aside How well this honest mirth becomes their labour!
95 Hark you, sir, do you know where ye are?
96 Not well.
97 Why, I'll tell you: this is called Pentapolis, and
98 our king the good Simonides.
99 The good King Simonides, do you call him.
100 Ay, sir; and he deserves so to be called for his
101 peaceable reign and good government.
102 He is a happy king, since he gains from his subjects
103 the name of good by his far is his
104 court distant from this shore?
105 Marry, sir, half a day's journey: and I'll tell
106 you, he hath a fair daughter, and to-morrow is her
107 birth-day; and there are princes and knights come
108 from all parts of the world to just and tourney for her love.
109 Were my fortunes equal to my desires, I could wish
110 to make one there.
111 O, sir, things must be as they may; and what a man
112 cannot get, he may lawfully deal for--his wife's soul.
Re-enter Second and Third Fishermen, drawing up a net
113 Help, master, help! here's a fish hangs in the net,
114 like a poor man's right in the law; 'twill hardly
115 come out. Ha! bots on't, 'tis come at last, and
116 'tis turned to a rusty armour.
117 An armour, friends! I pray you, let me see it.
118 Thanks, fortune, yet, that, after all my crosses,
119 Thou givest me somewhat to repair myself;
120 And though it was mine own, part of my heritage,
121 Which my dead father did bequeath to me.
122 With this strict charge, even as he left his life,
123 'Keep it, my Pericles; it hath been a shield
124 Twixt me and death;'--and pointed to this brace;--
125 'For that it saved me, keep it; in like necessity--
126 The which the gods protect thee from!--may
127 defend thee.'
128 It kept where I kept, I so dearly loved it;
129 Till the rough seas, that spare not any man,
130 Took it in rage, though calm'd have given't again:
131 I thank thee for't: my shipwreck now's no ill,
132 Since I have here my father's gift in's will.
133 What mean you, sir?
134 To beg of you, worth,
135 For it was sometime target to a king;
136 I know it by this mark. He loved me dearly,
137 And for his sake I having of it;
138 And that you'ld guide me to your sovereign's court,
139 Where with it I may appear a gentleman;
140 And if that ever my low fortune's better,
141 I'll pay your bounties; till then rest your debtor.
142 Why, wilt thou tourney for the lady?
143 I'll show the virtue I have borne in arms.
144 Why, do 'e take it, and the gods give thee good on't!
145 Ay, but hark you, my friend; 'twas we that made up
146 this garment through the rough seams of the waters:
147 there are certain condolements, certain vails. I
148 hope, sir, if you thrive, you'll remember from
149 whence you had it.
150 Believe 't, I will.
151 By your furtherance I am clothed in steel;
152 And, spite of all the rapture of the sea,
153 This jewel holds his building on my arm:
154 Unto thy value I will mount myself
155 Upon a courser, whose delightful steps
156 Shall make the gazer joy to see him tread.
157 Only, my friend, I yet am unprovided
158 Of a pair of bases.
159 We'll sure provide: thou shalt have my best gown to
160 make thee a pair; and I'll bring thee to the court myself.
161 Then honour be but a goal to my will,
162 This day I'll rise, or else add ill to ill.