Speeches (Lines) for Angelo
in "Measure for Measure"

Total: 83

---
# Act, Scene, Line
(Click to see in context)
Speech text

1

I,1,31

(stage directions). [Enter ANGELO]

Angelo. Always obedient to your grace's will,
I come to know your pleasure.


2

I,1,55

Vincentio. Angelo,
There is a kind of character in thy life,
That to the observer doth thy history
Fully unfold. Thyself and thy belongings
Are not thine own so proper as to waste
Thyself upon thy virtues, they on thee.
Heaven doth with us as we with torches do,
Not light them for themselves; for if our virtues
Did not go forth of us, 'twere all alike
As if we had them not. Spirits are not finely touch'd
But to fine issues, nor Nature never lends
The smallest scruple of her excellence
But, like a thrifty goddess, she determines
Herself the glory of a creditor,
Both thanks and use. But I do bend my speech
To one that can my part in him advertise;
Hold therefore, Angelo:—
In our remove be thou at full ourself;
Mortality and mercy in Vienna
Live in thy tongue and heart: old Escalus,
Though first in question, is thy secondary.
Take thy commission.

Angelo. Now, good my lord,
Let there be some more test made of my metal,
Before so noble and so great a figure
Be stamp'd upon it.


3

I,1,70

Vincentio. No more evasion:
We have with a leaven'd and prepared choice
Proceeded to you; therefore take your honours.
Our haste from hence is of so quick condition
That it prefers itself and leaves unquestion'd
Matters of needful value. We shall write to you,
As time and our concernings shall importune,
How it goes with us, and do look to know
What doth befall you here. So, fare you well;
To the hopeful execution do I leave you
Of your commissions.

Angelo. Yet give leave, my lord,
That we may bring you something on the way.


4

I,1,83

Vincentio. My haste may not admit it;
Nor need you, on mine honour, have to do
With any scruple; your scope is as mine own
So to enforce or qualify the laws
As to your soul seems good. Give me your hand:
I'll privily away. I love the people,
But do not like to stage me to their eyes:
Through it do well, I do not relish well
Their loud applause and Aves vehement;
Nor do I think the man of safe discretion
That does affect it. Once more, fare you well.

Angelo. The heavens give safety to your purposes!


5

I,1,92

Escalus. I shall desire you, sir, to give me leave
To have free speech with you; and it concerns me
To look into the bottom of my place:
A power I have, but of what strength and nature
I am not yet instructed.

Angelo. 'Tis so with me. Let us withdraw together,
And we may soon our satisfaction have
Touching that point.


6

II,1,453

(stage directions). [Enter ANGELO, ESCALUS, and a Justice, Provost,]
Officers, and other Attendants, behind]

Angelo. We must not make a scarecrow of the law,
Setting it up to fear the birds of prey,
And let it keep one shape, till custom make it
Their perch and not their terror.


7

II,1,470

Escalus. Ay, but yet
Let us be keen, and rather cut a little,
Than fall, and bruise to death. Alas, this gentleman
Whom I would save, had a most noble father!
Let but your honour know,
Whom I believe to be most strait in virtue,
That, in the working of your own affections,
Had time cohered with place or place with wishing,
Or that the resolute acting of your blood
Could have attain'd the effect of your own purpose,
Whether you had not sometime in your life
Err'd in this point which now you censure him,
And pull'd the law upon you.

Angelo. 'Tis one thing to be tempted, Escalus,
Another thing to fall. I not deny,
The jury, passing on the prisoner's life,
May in the sworn twelve have a thief or two
Guiltier than him they try. What's open made to justice,
That justice seizes: what know the laws
That thieves do pass on thieves? 'Tis very pregnant,
The jewel that we find, we stoop and take't
Because we see it; but what we do not see
We tread upon, and never think of it.
You may not so extenuate his offence
For I have had such faults; but rather tell me,
When I, that censure him, do so offend,
Let mine own judgment pattern out my death,
And nothing come in partial. Sir, he must die.


8

II,1,486

Escalus. Be it as your wisdom will.

Angelo. Where is the provost?


9

II,1,488

Provost. Here, if it like your honour.

Angelo. See that Claudio
Be executed by nine to-morrow morning:
Bring him his confessor, let him be prepared;
For that's the utmost of his pilgrimage.


10

II,1,501

Elbow. Come, bring them away: if these be good people in
a commonweal that do nothing but use their abuses in
common houses, I know no law: bring them away.

Angelo. How now, sir! What's your name? and what's the matter?


11

II,1,506

Elbow. If it Please your honour, I am the poor duke's
constable, and my name is Elbow: I do lean upon
justice, sir, and do bring in here before your good
honour two notorious benefactors.

Angelo. Benefactors? Well; what benefactors are they? are
they not malefactors?


12

II,1,513

Escalus. This comes off well; here's a wise officer.

Angelo. Go to: what quality are they of? Elbow is your
name? why dost thou not speak, Elbow?


13

II,1,516

Pompey. He cannot, sir; he's out at elbow.

Angelo. What are you, sir?


14

II,1,584

Pompey. Why, very well, then; I hope here be truths.

Angelo. This will last out a night in Russia,
When nights are longest there: I'll take my leave.
And leave you to the hearing of the cause;
Hoping you'll find good cause to whip them all.


15

II,2,743

(stage directions). [Enter ANGELO]

Angelo. Now, what's the matter. Provost?


16

II,2,745

Provost. Is it your will Claudio shall die tomorrow?

Angelo. Did not I tell thee yea? hadst thou not order?
Why dost thou ask again?


17

II,2,751

Provost. Lest I might be too rash:
Under your good correction, I have seen,
When, after execution, judgment hath
Repented o'er his doom.

Angelo. Go to; let that be mine:
Do you your office, or give up your place,
And you shall well be spared.


18

II,2,757

Provost. I crave your honour's pardon.
What shall be done, sir, with the groaning Juliet?
She's very near her hour.

Angelo. Dispose of her
To some more fitter place, and that with speed.


19

II,2,762

Servant. Here is the sister of the man condemn'd
Desires access to you.

Angelo. Hath he a sister?


20

II,2,766

Provost. Ay, my good lord; a very virtuous maid,
And to be shortly of a sisterhood,
If not already.

Angelo. Well, let her be admitted.
[Exit Servant]
See you the fornicatress be removed:
Let have needful, but not lavish, means;
There shall be order for't.


21

II,2,773

Provost. God save your honour!

Angelo. Stay a little while.
[To ISABELLA]
You're welcome: what's your will?


22

II,2,778

Isabella. I am a woeful suitor to your honour,
Please but your honour hear me.

Angelo. Well; what's your suit?


23

II,2,784

Isabella. There is a vice that most I do abhor,
And most desire should meet the blow of justice;
For which I would not plead, but that I must;
For which I must not plead, but that I am
At war 'twixt will and will not.

Angelo. Well; the matter?


24

II,2,789

Provost. [Aside] Heaven give thee moving graces!

Angelo. Condemn the fault and not the actor of it?
Why, every fault's condemn'd ere it be done:
Mine were the very cipher of a function,
To fine the faults whose fine stands in record,
And let go by the actor.


25

II,2,803

Isabella. Must he needs die?

Angelo. Maiden, no remedy.


26

II,2,806

Isabella. Yes; I do think that you might pardon him,
And neither heaven nor man grieve at the mercy.

Angelo. I will not do't.


27

II,2,808

Isabella. But can you, if you would?

Angelo. Look, what I will not, that I cannot do.


28

II,2,812

Isabella. But might you do't, and do the world no wrong,
If so your heart were touch'd with that remorse
As mine is to him?

Angelo. He's sentenced; 'tis too late.


29

II,2,824

Isabella. Too late? why, no; I, that do speak a word.
May call it back again. Well, believe this,
No ceremony that to great ones 'longs,
Not the king's crown, nor the deputed sword,
The marshal's truncheon, nor the judge's robe,
Become them with one half so good a grace
As mercy does.
If he had been as you and you as he,
You would have slipt like him; but he, like you,
Would not have been so stern.

Angelo. Pray you, be gone.


30

II,2,831

Lucio. [Aside to ISABELLA]
Ay, touch him; there's the vein.

Angelo. Your brother is a forfeit of the law,
And you but waste your words.


31

II,2,841

Isabella. Alas, alas!
Why, all the souls that were were forfeit once;
And He that might the vantage best have took
Found out the remedy. How would you be,
If He, which is the top of judgment, should
But judge you as you are? O, think on that;
And mercy then will breathe within your lips,
Like man new made.

Angelo. Be you content, fair maid;
It is the law, not I condemn your brother:
Were he my kinsman, brother, or my son,
It should be thus with him: he must die tomorrow.


32

II,2,853

Lucio. [Aside to ISABELLA] Ay, well said.

Angelo. The law hath not been dead, though it hath slept:
Those many had not dared to do that evil,
If the first that did the edict infringe
Had answer'd for his deed: now 'tis awake
Takes note of what is done; and, like a prophet,
Looks in a glass, that shows what future evils,
Either new, or by remissness new-conceived,
And so in progress to be hatch'd and born,
Are now to have no successive degrees,
But, ere they live, to end.


33

II,2,864

Isabella. Yet show some pity.

Angelo. I show it most of all when I show justice;
For then I pity those I do not know,
Which a dismiss'd offence would after gall;
And do him right that, answering one foul wrong,
Lives not to act another. Be satisfied;
Your brother dies to-morrow; be content.


34

II,2,900

Lucio. [Aside to ISABELLA] Art avised o' that? more on 't.

Angelo. Why do you put these sayings upon me?


35

II,2,909

Isabella. Because authority, though it err like others,
Hath yet a kind of medicine in itself,
That skins the vice o' the top. Go to your bosom;
Knock there, and ask your heart what it doth know
That's like my brother's fault: if it confess
A natural guiltiness such as is his,
Let it not sound a thought upon your tongue
Against my brother's life.

Angelo. [Aside] She speaks, and 'tis
Such sense, that my sense breeds with it. Fare you well.


36

II,2,912

Isabella. Gentle my lord, turn back.

Angelo. I will bethink me: come again tomorrow.


37

II,2,914

Isabella. Hark how I'll bribe you: good my lord, turn back.

Angelo. How! bribe me?


38

II,2,924

Isabella. Not with fond shekels of the tested gold,
Or stones whose rates are either rich or poor
As fancy values them; but with true prayers
That shall be up at heaven and enter there
Ere sun-rise, prayers from preserved souls,
From fasting maids whose minds are dedicate
To nothing temporal.

Angelo. Well; come to me to-morrow.


39

II,2,927

Isabella. Heaven keep your honour safe!

Angelo. [Aside]. Amen:
For I am that way going to temptation,
Where prayers cross.


40

II,2,932

Isabella. At what hour to-morrow
Shall I attend your lordship?

Angelo. At any time 'fore noon.


41

II,2,935

(stage directions). [Exeunt ISABELLA, LUCIO, and Provost]

Angelo. From thee, even from thy virtue!
What's this, what's this? Is this her fault or mine?
The tempter or the tempted, who sins most?
Ha!
Not she: nor doth she tempt: but it is I
That, lying by the violet in the sun,
Do as the carrion does, not as the flower,
Corrupt with virtuous season. Can it be
That modesty may more betray our sense
Than woman's lightness? Having waste ground enough,
Shall we desire to raze the sanctuary
And pitch our evils there? O, fie, fie, fie!
What dost thou, or what art thou, Angelo?
Dost thou desire her foully for those things
That make her good? O, let her brother live!
Thieves for their robbery have authority
When judges steal themselves. What, do I love her,
That I desire to hear her speak again,
And feast upon her eyes? What is't I dream on?
O cunning enemy, that, to catch a saint,
With saints dost bait thy hook! Most dangerous
Is that temptation that doth goad us on
To sin in loving virtue: never could the strumpet,
With all her double vigour, art and nature,
Once stir my temper; but this virtuous maid
Subdues me quite. Even till now,
When men were fond, I smiled and wonder'd how.


42

II,4,1017

(stage directions). [Enter ANGELO]

Angelo. When I would pray and think, I think and pray
To several subjects. Heaven hath my empty words;
Whilst my invention, hearing not my tongue,
Anchors on Isabel: Heaven in my mouth,
As if I did but only chew his name;
And in my heart the strong and swelling evil
Of my conception. The state, whereon I studied
Is like a good thing, being often read,
Grown fear'd and tedious; yea, my gravity,
Wherein—let no man hear me—I take pride,
Could I with boot change for an idle plume,
Which the air beats for vain. O place, O form,
How often dost thou with thy case, thy habit,
Wrench awe from fools and tie the wiser souls
To thy false seeming! Blood, thou art blood:
Let's write good angel on the devil's horn:
'Tis not the devil's crest.
[Enter a Servant]
How now! who's there?


43

II,4,1037

Servant. One Isabel, a sister, desires access to you.

Angelo. Teach her the way.
[Exit Servant]
O heavens!
Why does my blood thus muster to my heart,
Making both it unable for itself,
And dispossessing all my other parts
Of necessary fitness?
So play the foolish throngs with one that swoons;
Come all to help him, and so stop the air
By which he should revive: and even so
The general, subject to a well-wish'd king,
Quit their own part, and in obsequious fondness
Crowd to his presence, where their untaught love
Must needs appear offence.
[Enter ISABELLA]
How now, fair maid?


44

II,4,1054

Isabella. I am come to know your pleasure.

Angelo. That you might know it, would much better please me
Than to demand what 'tis. Your brother cannot live.


45

II,4,1057

Isabella. Even so. Heaven keep your honour!

Angelo. Yet may he live awhile; and, it may be,
As long as you or I. yet he must die.


46

II,4,1060

Isabella. Under your sentence?

Angelo. Yea.


47

II,4,1064

Isabella. When, I beseech you? that in his reprieve,
Longer or shorter, he may be so fitted
That his soul sicken not.

Angelo. Ha! fie, these filthy vices! It were as good
To pardon him that hath from nature stolen
A man already made, as to remit
Their saucy sweetness that do coin heaven's image
In stamps that are forbid: 'tis all as easy
Falsely to take away a life true made
As to put metal in restrained means
To make a false one.


48

II,4,1073

Isabella. 'Tis set down so in heaven, but not in earth.

Angelo. Say you so? then I shall pose you quickly.
Which had you rather, that the most just law
Now took your brother's life; or, to redeem him,
Give up your body to such sweet uncleanness
As she that he hath stain'd?


49

II,4,1080

Isabella. Sir, believe this,
I had rather give my body than my soul.

Angelo. I talk not of your soul: our compell'd sins
Stand more for number than for accompt.


50

II,4,1083

Isabella. How say you?

Angelo. Nay, I'll not warrant that; for I can speak
Against the thing I say. Answer to this:
I, now the voice of the recorded law,
Pronounce a sentence on your brother's life:
Might there not be a charity in sin
To save this brother's life?


51

II,4,1092

Isabella. Please you to do't,
I'll take it as a peril to my soul,
It is no sin at all, but charity.

Angelo. Pleased you to do't at peril of your soul,
Were equal poise of sin and charity.


52

II,4,1099

Isabella. That I do beg his life, if it be sin,
Heaven let me bear it! you granting of my suit,
If that be sin, I'll make it my morn prayer
To have it added to the faults of mine,
And nothing of your answer.

Angelo. Nay, but hear me.
Your sense pursues not mine: either you are ignorant,
Or seem so craftily; and that's not good.


53

II,4,1104

Isabella. Let me be ignorant, and in nothing good,
But graciously to know I am no better.

Angelo. Thus wisdom wishes to appear most bright
When it doth tax itself; as these black masks
Proclaim an enshield beauty ten times louder
Than beauty could, display'd. But mark me;
To be received plain, I'll speak more gross:
Your brother is to die.


54

II,4,1111

Isabella. So.

Angelo. And his offence is so, as it appears,
Accountant to the law upon that pain.


55

II,4,1114

Isabella. True.

Angelo. Admit no other way to save his life,—
As I subscribe not that, nor any other,
But in the loss of question,—that you, his sister,
Finding yourself desired of such a person,
Whose credit with the judge, or own great place,
Could fetch your brother from the manacles
Of the all-building law; and that there were
No earthly mean to save him, but that either
You must lay down the treasures of your body
To this supposed, or else to let him suffer;
What would you do?


56

II,4,1131

Isabella. As much for my poor brother as myself:
That is, were I under the terms of death,
The impression of keen whips I'ld wear as rubies,
And strip myself to death, as to a bed
That longing have been sick for, ere I'ld yield
My body up to shame.

Angelo. Then must your brother die.


57

II,4,1136

Isabella. And 'twere the cheaper way:
Better it were a brother died at once,
Than that a sister, by redeeming him,
Should die for ever.

Angelo. Were not you then as cruel as the sentence
That you have slander'd so?


58

II,4,1141

Isabella. Ignomy in ransom and free pardon
Are of two houses: lawful mercy
Is nothing kin to foul redemption.

Angelo. You seem'd of late to make the law a tyrant;
And rather proved the sliding of your brother
A merriment than a vice.


59

II,4,1148

Isabella. O, pardon me, my lord; it oft falls out,
To have what we would have, we speak not what we mean:
I something do excuse the thing I hate,
For his advantage that I dearly love.

Angelo. We are all frail.


60

II,4,1152

Isabella. Else let my brother die,
If not a feodary, but only he
Owe and succeed thy weakness.

Angelo. Nay, women are frail too.


61

II,4,1159

Isabella. Ay, as the glasses where they view themselves;
Which are as easy broke as they make forms.
Women! Help Heaven! men their creation mar
In profiting by them. Nay, call us ten times frail;
For we are soft as our complexions are,
And credulous to false prints.

Angelo. I think it well:
And from this testimony of your own sex,—
Since I suppose we are made to be no stronger
Than faults may shake our frames,—let me be bold;
I do arrest your words. Be that you are,
That is, a woman; if you be more, you're none;
If you be one, as you are well express'd
By all external warrants, show it now,
By putting on the destined livery.


62

II,4,1170

Isabella. I have no tongue but one: gentle my lord,
Let me entreat you speak the former language.

Angelo. Plainly conceive, I love you.


63

II,4,1173

Isabella. My brother did love Juliet,
And you tell me that he shall die for it.

Angelo. He shall not, Isabel, if you give me love.


64

II,4,1177

Isabella. I know your virtue hath a licence in't,
Which seems a little fouler than it is,
To pluck on others.

Angelo. Believe me, on mine honour,
My words express my purpose.


65

II,4,1185

Isabella. Ha! little honour to be much believed,
And most pernicious purpose! Seeming, seeming!
I will proclaim thee, Angelo; look for't:
Sign me a present pardon for my brother,
Or with an outstretch'd throat I'll tell the world aloud
What man thou art.

Angelo. Who will believe thee, Isabel?
My unsoil'd name, the austereness of my life,
My vouch against you, and my place i' the state,
Will so your accusation overweigh,
That you shall stifle in your own report
And smell of calumny. I have begun,
And now I give my sensual race the rein:
Fit thy consent to my sharp appetite;
Lay by all nicety and prolixious blushes,
That banish what they sue for; redeem thy brother
By yielding up thy body to my will;
Or else he must not only die the death,
But thy unkindness shall his death draw out
To lingering sufferance. Answer me to-morrow,
Or, by the affection that now guides me most,
I'll prove a tyrant to him. As for you,
Say what you can, my false o'erweighs your true.


66

IV,4,2309

Escalus. Every letter he hath writ hath disvouched other.

Angelo. In most uneven and distracted manner. His actions
show much like to madness: pray heaven his wisdom be
not tainted! And why meet him at the gates, and
redeliver our authorities there


67

IV,4,2314

Escalus. I guess not.

Angelo. And why should we proclaim it in an hour before his
entering, that if any crave redress of injustice,
they should exhibit their petitions in the street?


68

IV,4,2321

Escalus. He shows his reason for that: to have a dispatch of
complaints, and to deliver us from devices
hereafter, which shall then have no power to stand
against us.

Angelo. Well, I beseech you, let it be proclaimed betimes
i' the morn; I'll call you at your house: give
notice to such men of sort and suit as are to meet
him.


69

IV,4,2326

Escalus. I shall, sir. Fare you well.

Angelo. Good night.
[Exit ESCALUS]
This deed unshapes me quite, makes me unpregnant
And dull to all proceedings. A deflower'd maid!
And by an eminent body that enforced
The law against it! But that her tender shame
Will not proclaim against her maiden loss,
How might she tongue me! Yet reason dares her no;
For my authority bears of a credent bulk,
That no particular scandal once can touch
But it confounds the breather. He should have lived,
Save that riotous youth, with dangerous sense,
Might in the times to come have ta'en revenge,
By so receiving a dishonour'd life
With ransom of such shame. Would yet he had lived!
A lack, when once our grace we have forgot,
Nothing goes right: we would, and we would not.


70

V,1,2389

Vincentio. My very worthy cousin, fairly met!
Our old and faithful friend, we are glad to see you.

Angelo. [with Escalus] Happy return be to your royal grace!


71

V,1,2395

Vincentio. Many and hearty thankings to you both.
We have made inquiry of you; and we hear
Such goodness of your justice, that our soul
Cannot but yield you forth to public thanks,
Forerunning more requital.

Angelo. You make my bonds still greater.


72

V,1,2422

Isabella. O worthy duke,
You bid me seek redemption of the devil:
Hear me yourself; for that which I must speak
Must either punish me, not being believed,
Or wring redress from you. Hear me, O hear me, here!

Angelo. My lord, her wits, I fear me, are not firm:
She hath been a suitor to me for her brother
Cut off by course of justice,—


73

V,1,2426

Isabella. By course of justice!

Angelo. And she will speak most bitterly and strange.


74

V,1,2604

Mariana. Now I come to't my lord
She that accuses him of fornication,
In self-same manner doth accuse my husband,
And charges him my lord, with such a time
When I'll depose I had him in mine arms
With all the effect of love.

Angelo. Charges she more than me?


75

V,1,2610

Mariana. Why, just, my lord, and that is Angelo,
Who thinks he knows that he ne'er knew my body,
But knows he thinks that he knows Isabel's.

Angelo. This is a strange abuse. Let's see thy face.


76

V,1,2624

Lucio. Enough, my lord.

Angelo. My lord, I must confess I know this woman:
And five years since there was some speech of marriage
Betwixt myself and her; which was broke off,
Partly for that her promised proportions
Came short of composition, but in chief
For that her reputation was disvalued
In levity: since which time of five years
I never spake with her, saw her, nor heard from her,
Upon my faith and honour.


77

V,1,2643

Mariana. Noble prince,
As there comes light from heaven and words from breath,
As there is sense in truth and truth in virtue,
I am affianced this man's wife as strongly
As words could make up vows: and, my good lord,
But Tuesday night last gone in's garden-house
He knew me as a wife. As this is true,
Let me in safety raise me from my knees
Or else for ever be confixed here,
A marble monument!

Angelo. I did but smile till now:
Now, good my lord, give me the scope of justice
My patience here is touch'd. I do perceive
These poor informal women are no more
But instruments of some more mightier member
That sets them on: let me have way, my lord,
To find this practise out.


78

V,1,2741

Escalus. Slander to the state! Away with him to prison!

Angelo. What can you vouch against him, Signior Lucio?
Is this the man that you did tell us of?


79

V,1,2757

Vincentio. I protest I love the duke as I love myself.

Angelo. Hark, how the villain would close now, after his
treasonable abuses!


80

V,1,2765

Vincentio. [To Provost] Stay, sir; stay awhile.

Angelo. What, resists he? Help him, Lucio.


81

V,1,2786

Vincentio. [To ESCALUS] What you have spoke I pardon: sit you down:
We'll borrow place of him.
[To ANGELO]
Sir, by your leave.
Hast thou or word, or wit, or impudence,
That yet can do thee office? If thou hast,
Rely upon it till my tale be heard,
And hold no longer out.

Angelo. O my dread lord,
I should be guiltier than my guiltiness,
To think I can be undiscernible,
When I perceive your grace, like power divine,. Hath look'd upon my passes. Then, good prince,
No longer session hold upon my shame,
But let my trial be mine own confession:
Immediate sentence then and sequent death
Is all the grace I beg.


82

V,1,2796

Vincentio. Come hither, Mariana.
Say, wast thou e'er contracted to this woman?

Angelo. I was, my lord.


83

V,1,2915

Escalus. I am sorry, one so learned and so wise
As you, Lord Angelo, have still appear'd,
Should slip so grossly, both in the heat of blood.
And lack of temper'd judgment afterward.

Angelo. I am sorry that such sorrow I procure:
And so deep sticks it in my penitent heart
That I crave death more willingly than mercy;
'Tis my deserving, and I do entreat it.
[Re-enter Provost, with BARNARDINE, CLAUDIO muffled,]
and JULIET]


Return to the "Measure for Measure" menu

Plays + Sonnets + Poems + Concordance + Character Search + Advanced Search + About OSS