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Speeches (Lines) for Helicanus
in "Pericles"

Total: 37

# Act, Scene, Line
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Speech text



Second Lord. And keep your mind, till you return to us,
Peaceful and comfortable!

Helicanus. Peace, peace, and give experience tongue.
They do abuse the king that flatter him:
For flattery is the bellows blows up sin;
The thing which is flatter'd, but a spark,
To which that blast gives heat and stronger glowing;
Whereas reproof, obedient and in order,
Fits kings, as they are men, for they may err.
When Signior Sooth here does proclaim a peace,
He flatters you, makes war upon your life.
Prince, pardon me, or strike me, if you please;
I cannot be much lower than my knees.



Pericles. All leave us else; but let your cares o'erlook
What shipping and what lading's in our haven,
And then return to us.
[Exeunt Lords]
Helicanus, thou
Hast moved us: what seest thou in our looks?

Helicanus. An angry brow, dread lord.



Pericles. If there be such a dart in princes' frowns,
How durst thy tongue move anger to our face?

Helicanus. How dare the plants look up to heaven, from whence
They have their nourishment?



Pericles. Thou know'st I have power
To take thy life from thee.

Helicanus. [Kneeling]
I have ground the axe myself;
Do you but strike the blow.



Pericles. Rise, prithee, rise.
Sit down: thou art no flatterer:
I thank thee for it; and heaven forbid
That kings should let their ears hear their
faults hid!
Fit counsellor and servant for a prince,
Who by thy wisdom makest a prince thy servant,
What wouldst thou have me do?

Helicanus. To bear with patience
Such griefs as you yourself do lay upon yourself.



Pericles. Thou speak'st like a physician, Helicanus,
That minister'st a potion unto me
That thou wouldst tremble to receive thyself.
Attend me, then: I went to Antioch,
Where as thou know'st, against the face of death,
I sought the purchase of a glorious beauty.
From whence an issue I might propagate,
Are arms to princes, and bring joys to subjects.
Her face was to mine eye beyond all wonder;
The rest—hark in thine ear—as black as incest:
Which by my knowledge found, the sinful father
Seem'd not to strike, but smooth: but thou
know'st this,
'Tis time to fear when tyrants seem to kiss.
Such fear so grew in me, I hither fled,
Under the covering of a careful night,
Who seem'd my good protector; and, being here,
Bethought me what was past, what might succeed.
I knew him tyrannous; and tyrants' fears
Decrease not, but grow faster than the years:
And should he doubt it, as no doubt he doth,
That I should open to the listening air
How many worthy princes' bloods were shed,
To keep his bed of blackness unlaid ope,
To lop that doubt, he'll fill this land with arms,
And make pretence of wrong that I have done him:
When all, for mine, if I may call offence,
Must feel war's blow, who spares not innocence:
Which love to all, of which thyself art one,
Who now reprovest me for it,—

Helicanus. Alas, sir!



Pericles. Drew sleep out of mine eyes, blood from my cheeks,
Musings into my mind, with thousand doubts
How I might stop this tempest ere it came;
And finding little comfort to relieve them,
I thought it princely charity to grieve them.

Helicanus. Well, my lord, since you have given me leave to speak.
Freely will I speak. Antiochus you fear,
And justly too, I think, you fear the tyrant,
Who either by public war or private treason
Will take away your life.
Therefore, my lord, go travel for a while,
Till that his rage and anger be forgot,
Or till the Destinies do cut his thread of life.
Your rule direct to any; if to me.
Day serves not light more faithful than I'll be.



Pericles. I do not doubt thy faith;
But should he wrong my liberties in my absence?

Helicanus. We'll mingle our bloods together in the earth,
From whence we had our being and our birth.



(stage directions). [Enter HELICANUS and ESCANES, with other Lords of Tyre]

Helicanus. You shall not need, my fellow peers of Tyre,
Further to question me of your king's departure:
His seal'd commission, left in trust with me,
Doth speak sufficiently he's gone to travel.



Thaliard. [Aside] How! the king gone!

Helicanus. If further yet you will be satisfied,
Why, as it were unlicensed of your loves,
He would depart, I'll give some light unto you.
Being at Antioch—



Thaliard. [Aside] What from Antioch?

Helicanus. Royal Antiochus—on what cause I know not—
Took some displeasure at him; at least he judged so:
And doubting lest that he had err'd or sinn'd,
To show his sorrow, he'ld correct himself;
So puts himself unto the shipman's toil,
With whom each minute threatens life or death.



Thaliard. [Aside] Well, I perceive
I shall not be hang'd now, although I would;
But since he's gone, the king's seas must please:
He 'scaped the land, to perish at the sea.
I'll present myself. Peace to the lords of Tyre!

Helicanus. Lord Thaliard from Antiochus is welcome.



Thaliard. From him I come
With message unto princely Pericles;
But since my landing I have understood
Your lord has betook himself to unknown travels,
My message must return from whence it came.

Helicanus. We have no reason to desire it,
Commended to our master, not to us:
Yet, ere you shall depart, this we desire,
As friends to Antioch, we may feast in Tyre.



(stage directions). [Enter HELICANUS and ESCANES]

Helicanus. No, Escanes, know this of me,
Antiochus from incest lived not free:
For which, the most high gods not minding longer
To withhold the vengeance that they had in store,
Due to this heinous capital offence,
Even in the height and pride of all his glory,
When he was seated in a chariot
Of an inestimable value, and his daughter with him,
A fire from heaven came and shrivell'd up
Their bodies, even to loathing; for they so stunk,
That all those eyes adored them ere their fall
Scorn now their hand should give them burial.



Escanes. 'Twas very strange.

Helicanus. And yet but justice; for though
This king were great, his greatness was no guard
To bar heaven's shaft, but sin had his reward.



First Lord. Follow me, then. Lord Helicane, a word.

Helicanus. With me? and welcome: happy day, my lords.



First Lord. Know that our griefs are risen to the top,
And now at length they overflow their banks.

Helicanus. Your griefs! for what? wrong not your prince you love.



All. Live, noble Helicane!

Helicanus. For honour's cause, forbear your suffrages:
If that you love Prince Pericles, forbear.
Take I your wish, I leap into the seas,
Where's hourly trouble for a minute's ease.
A twelvemonth longer, let me entreat you to
Forbear the absence of your king:
If in which time expired, he not return,
I shall with aged patience bear your yoke.
But if I cannot win you to this love,
Go search like nobles, like noble subjects,
And in your search spend your adventurous worth;
Whom if you find, and win unto return,
You shall like diamonds sit about his crown.



First Lord. To wisdom he's a fool that will not yield;
And since Lord Helicane enjoineth us,
We with our travels will endeavour us.

Helicanus. Then you love us, we you, and we'll clasp hands:
When peers thus knit, a kingdom ever stands.



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.



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]



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.

Helicanus. Sir,
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.
[PERICLES discovered]
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.



(stage directions). [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.



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.



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.



(stage directions). [Re-enter HELICANUS, LYSIMACHUS, and MARINA]

Helicanus. Sir?



Thaisa. Blest, and mine own!

Helicanus. Hail, madam, and my queen!

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