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Speeches (Lines) for Claudio
in "Much Ado about Nothing"

Total: 125

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(stage directions). [Exeunt all except BENEDICK and CLAUDIO]

Claudio. Benedick, didst thou note the daughter of Signior Leonato?



Benedick. I noted her not; but I looked on her.

Claudio. Is she not a modest young lady?



Benedick. Do you question me, as an honest man should do, for
my simple true judgment; or would you have me speak
after my custom, as being a professed tyrant to their sex?

Claudio. No; I pray thee speak in sober judgment.



Benedick. Why, i' faith, methinks she's too low for a high
praise, too brown for a fair praise and too little
for a great praise: only this commendation I can
afford her, that were she other than she is, she
were unhandsome; and being no other but as she is, I
do not like her.

Claudio. Thou thinkest I am in sport: I pray thee tell me
truly how thou likest her.



Benedick. Would you buy her, that you inquire after her?

Claudio. Can the world buy such a jewel?



Benedick. Yea, and a case to put it into. But speak you this
with a sad brow? or do you play the flouting Jack,
to tell us Cupid is a good hare-finder and Vulcan a
rare carpenter? Come, in what key shall a man take
you, to go in the song?

Claudio. In mine eye she is the sweetest lady that ever I
looked on.



Benedick. I can see yet without spectacles and I see no such
matter: there's her cousin, an she were not
possessed with a fury, exceeds her as much in beauty
as the first of May doth the last of December. But I
hope you have no intent to turn husband, have you?

Claudio. I would scarce trust myself, though I had sworn the
contrary, if Hero would be my wife.



Benedick. You hear, Count Claudio: I can be secret as a dumb
man; I would have you think so; but, on my
allegiance, mark you this, on my allegiance. He is
in love. With who? now that is your grace's part.
Mark how short his answer is;—With Hero, Leonato's
short daughter.

Claudio. If this were so, so were it uttered.



Benedick. Like the old tale, my lord: 'it is not so, nor
'twas not so, but, indeed, God forbid it should be

Claudio. If my passion change not shortly, God forbid it
should be otherwise.



Don Pedro. Amen, if you love her; for the lady is very well worthy.

Claudio. You speak this to fetch me in, my lord.



Don Pedro. By my troth, I speak my thought.

Claudio. And, in faith, my lord, I spoke mine.



Benedick. And, by my two faiths and troths, my lord, I spoke mine.

Claudio. That I love her, I feel.



Don Pedro. Thou wast ever an obstinate heretic in the despite
of beauty.

Claudio. And never could maintain his part but in the force
of his will.



Benedick. The savage bull may; but if ever the sensible
Benedick bear it, pluck off the bull's horns and set
them in my forehead: and let me be vilely painted,
and in such great letters as they write 'Here is
good horse to hire,' let them signify under my sign
'Here you may see Benedick the married man.'

Claudio. If this should ever happen, thou wouldst be horn-mad.



Benedick. I have almost matter enough in me for such an
embassage; and so I commit you—

Claudio. To the tuition of God: From my house, if I had it,—



(stage directions). [Exit]

Claudio. My liege, your highness now may do me good.



Don Pedro. My love is thine to teach: teach it but how,
And thou shalt see how apt it is to learn
Any hard lesson that may do thee good.

Claudio. Hath Leonato any son, my lord?



Don Pedro. No child but Hero; she's his only heir.
Dost thou affect her, Claudio?

Claudio. O, my lord,
When you went onward on this ended action,
I look'd upon her with a soldier's eye,
That liked, but had a rougher task in hand
Than to drive liking to the name of love:
But now I am return'd and that war-thoughts
Have left their places vacant, in their rooms
Come thronging soft and delicate desires,
All prompting me how fair young Hero is,
Saying, I liked her ere I went to wars.



Don Pedro. Thou wilt be like a lover presently
And tire the hearer with a book of words.
If thou dost love fair Hero, cherish it,
And I will break with her and with her father,
And thou shalt have her. Was't not to this end
That thou began'st to twist so fine a story?

Claudio. How sweetly you do minister to love,
That know love's grief by his complexion!
But lest my liking might too sudden seem,
I would have salved it with a longer treatise.



Don John. Are not you Signior Benedick?

Claudio. You know me well; I am he.



Don John. Signior, you are very near my brother in his love:
he is enamoured on Hero; I pray you, dissuade him
from her: she is no equal for his birth: you may
do the part of an honest man in it.

Claudio. How know you he loves her?



(stage directions). [Exeunt DON JOHN and BORACHIO]

Claudio. Thus answer I in the name of Benedick,
But hear these ill news with the ears of Claudio.
'Tis certain so; the prince wooes for himself.
Friendship is constant in all other things
Save in the office and affairs of love:
Therefore, all hearts in love use their own tongues;
Let every eye negotiate for itself
And trust no agent; for beauty is a witch
Against whose charms faith melteth into blood.
This is an accident of hourly proof,
Which I mistrusted not. Farewell, therefore, Hero!



Benedick. Count Claudio?

Claudio. Yea, the same.



Benedick. Come, will you go with me?

Claudio. Whither?



Benedick. Even to the next willow, about your own business,
county. What fashion will you wear the garland of?
about your neck, like an usurer's chain? or under
your arm, like a lieutenant's scarf? You must wear
it one way, for the prince hath got your Hero.

Claudio. I wish him joy of her.



Benedick. Why, that's spoken like an honest drovier: so they
sell bullocks. But did you think the prince would
have served you thus?

Claudio. I pray you, leave me.



Benedick. Ho! now you strike like the blind man: 'twas the
boy that stole your meat, and you'll beat the post.

Claudio. If it will not be, I'll leave you.



Don Pedro. Why, how now, count! wherefore are you sad?

Claudio. Not sad, my lord.



Don Pedro. How then? sick?

Claudio. Neither, my lord.



Beatrice. Speak, count, 'tis your cue.

Claudio. Silence is the perfectest herald of joy: I were
but little happy, if I could say how much. Lady, as
you are mine, I am yours: I give away myself for
you and dote upon the exchange.



Beatrice. Yea, my lord; I thank it, poor fool, it keeps on
the windy side of care. My cousin tells him in his
ear that he is in her heart.

Claudio. And so she doth, cousin.



Don Pedro. County Claudio, when mean you to go to church?

Claudio. To-morrow, my lord: time goes on crutches till love
have all his rites.



Leonato. My lord, I am for you, though it cost me ten
nights' watchings.

Claudio. And I, my lord.



Don Pedro. Come, shall we hear this music?

Claudio. Yea, my good lord. How still the evening is,
As hush'd on purpose to grace harmony!



Don Pedro. See you where Benedick hath hid himself?

Claudio. O, very well, my lord: the music ended,
We'll fit the kid-fox with a pennyworth.



Don Pedro. Do so: farewell.
Come hither, Leonato. What was it you told me of
to-day, that your niece Beatrice was in love with
Signior Benedick?

Claudio. O, ay: stalk on. stalk on; the fowl sits. I did
never think that lady would have loved any man.



Don Pedro. May be she doth but counterfeit.

Claudio. Faith, like enough.



Don Pedro. Why, what effects of passion shows she?

Claudio. Bait the hook well; this fish will bite.



Leonato. What effects, my lord? She will sit you, you heard
my daughter tell you how.

Claudio. She did, indeed.



Benedick. I should think this a gull, but that the
white-bearded fellow speaks it: knavery cannot,
sure, hide himself in such reverence.

Claudio. He hath ta'en the infection: hold it up.



Leonato. No; and swears she never will: that's her torment.

Claudio. 'Tis true, indeed; so your daughter says: 'Shall
I,' says she, 'that have so oft encountered him
with scorn, write to him that I love him?'



Leonato. This says she now when she is beginning to write to
him; for she'll be up twenty times a night, and
there will she sit in her smock till she have writ a
sheet of paper: my daughter tells us all.

Claudio. Now you talk of a sheet of paper, I remember a
pretty jest your daughter told us of.



Leonato. O, when she had writ it and was reading it over, she
found Benedick and Beatrice between the sheet?

Claudio. That.



Leonato. O, she tore the letter into a thousand halfpence;
railed at herself, that she should be so immodest
to write to one that she knew would flout her; 'I
measure him,' says she, 'by my own spirit; for I
should flout him, if he writ to me; yea, though I
love him, I should.'

Claudio. Then down upon her knees she falls, weeps, sobs,
beats her heart, tears her hair, prays, curses; 'O
sweet Benedick! God give me patience!'



Don Pedro. It were good that Benedick knew of it by some
other, if she will not discover it.

Claudio. To what end? He would make but a sport of it and
torment the poor lady worse.



Don Pedro. An he should, it were an alms to hang him. She's an
excellent sweet lady; and, out of all suspicion,
she is virtuous.

Claudio. And she is exceeding wise.



Leonato. Were it good, think you?

Claudio. Hero thinks surely she will die; for she says she
will die, if he love her not, and she will die, ere
she make her love known, and she will die, if he woo
her, rather than she will bate one breath of her
accustomed crossness.



Don Pedro. She doth well: if she should make tender of her
love, 'tis very possible he'll scorn it; for the
man, as you know all, hath a contemptible spirit.

Claudio. He is a very proper man.



Don Pedro. He hath indeed a good outward happiness.

Claudio. Before God! and, in my mind, very wise.



Don Pedro. He doth indeed show some sparks that are like wit.

Claudio. And I take him to be valiant.



Don Pedro. And so will he do; for the man doth fear God,
howsoever it seems not in him by some large jests
he will make. Well I am sorry for your niece. Shall
we go seek Benedick, and tell him of her love?

Claudio. Never tell him, my lord: let her wear it out with
good counsel.



Leonato. My lord, will you walk? dinner is ready.

Claudio. If he do not dote on her upon this, I will never
trust my expectation.



Don Pedro. I do but stay till your marriage be consummate, and
then go I toward Arragon.

Claudio. I'll bring you thither, my lord, if you'll
vouchsafe me.



Leonato. So say I. methinks you are sadder.

Claudio. I hope he be in love.



Benedick. Hang it!

Claudio. You must hang it first, and draw it afterwards.



Benedick. Well, every one can master a grief but he that has

Claudio. Yet say I, he is in love.



Don Pedro. There is no appearance of fancy in him, unless it be
a fancy that he hath to strange disguises; as, to be
a Dutchman today, a Frenchman to-morrow, or in the
shape of two countries at once, as, a German from
the waist downward, all slops, and a Spaniard from
the hip upward, no doublet. Unless he have a fancy
to this foolery, as it appears he hath, he is no
fool for fancy, as you would have it appear he is.

Claudio. If he be not in love with some woman, there is no
believing old signs: a' brushes his hat o'
mornings; what should that bode?



Don Pedro. Hath any man seen him at the barber's?

Claudio. No, but the barber's man hath been seen with him,
and the old ornament of his cheek hath already
stuffed tennis-balls.



Don Pedro. Nay, a' rubs himself with civet: can you smell him
out by that?

Claudio. That's as much as to say, the sweet youth's in love.



Don Pedro. The greatest note of it is his melancholy.

Claudio. And when was he wont to wash his face?



Don Pedro. Yea, or to paint himself? for the which, I hear
what they say of him.

Claudio. Nay, but his jesting spirit; which is now crept into
a lute-string and now governed by stops.



Don Pedro. Indeed, that tells a heavy tale for him: conclude,
conclude he is in love.

Claudio. Nay, but I know who loves him.



Don Pedro. That would I know too: I warrant, one that knows him not.

Claudio. Yes, and his ill conditions; and, in despite of
all, dies for him.



Don Pedro. For my life, to break with him about Beatrice.

Claudio. 'Tis even so. Hero and Margaret have by this
played their parts with Beatrice; and then the two
bears will not bite one another when they meet.



Don John. I know not that, when he knows what I know.

Claudio. If there be any impediment, I pray you discover it.



Don John. I came hither to tell you; and, circumstances
shortened, for she has been too long a talking of,
the lady is disloyal.

Claudio. Who, Hero?



Don Pedro. Even she; Leonato's Hero, your Hero, every man's Hero:

Claudio. Disloyal?



Don John. The word is too good to paint out her wickedness; I
could say she were worse: think you of a worse
title, and I will fit her to it. Wonder not till
further warrant: go but with me to-night, you shall
see her chamber-window entered, even the night
before her wedding-day: if you love her then,
to-morrow wed her; but it would better fit your honour
to change your mind.

Claudio. May this be so?



Don John. If you dare not trust that you see, confess not
that you know: if you will follow me, I will show
you enough; and when you have seen more and heard
more, proceed accordingly.

Claudio. If I see any thing to-night why I should not marry
her to-morrow in the congregation, where I should
wed, there will I shame her.



Don Pedro. O day untowardly turned!

Claudio. O mischief strangely thwarting!



Friar Francis. You come hither, my lord, to marry this lady.

Claudio. No.



Friar Francis. If either of you know any inward impediment why you
should not be conjoined, charge you, on your souls,
to utter it.

Claudio. Know you any, Hero?



Leonato. I dare make his answer, none.

Claudio. O, what men dare do! what men may do! what men daily
do, not knowing what they do!



Benedick. How now! interjections? Why, then, some be of
laughing, as, ah, ha, he!

Claudio. Stand thee by, friar. Father, by your leave:
Will you with free and unconstrained soul
Give me this maid, your daughter?



Leonato. As freely, son, as God did give her me.

Claudio. And what have I to give you back, whose worth
May counterpoise this rich and precious gift?



Don Pedro. Nothing, unless you render her again.

Claudio. Sweet prince, you learn me noble thankfulness.
There, Leonato, take her back again:
Give not this rotten orange to your friend;
She's but the sign and semblance of her honour.
Behold how like a maid she blushes here!
O, what authority and show of truth
Can cunning sin cover itself withal!
Comes not that blood as modest evidence
To witness simple virtue? Would you not swear,
All you that see her, that she were a maid,
By these exterior shows? But she is none:
She knows the heat of a luxurious bed;
Her blush is guiltiness, not modesty.



Leonato. What do you mean, my lord?

Claudio. Not to be married,
Not to knit my soul to an approved wanton.



Leonato. Dear my lord, if you, in your own proof,
Have vanquish'd the resistance of her youth,
And made defeat of her virginity,—

Claudio. I know what you would say: if I have known her,
You will say she did embrace me as a husband,
And so extenuate the 'forehand sin:
No, Leonato,
I never tempted her with word too large;
But, as a brother to his sister, show'd
Bashful sincerity and comely love.



Hero. And seem'd I ever otherwise to you?

Claudio. Out on thee! Seeming! I will write against it:
You seem to me as Dian in her orb,
As chaste as is the bud ere it be blown;
But you are more intemperate in your blood
Than Venus, or those pamper'd animals
That rage in savage sensuality.



Hero. True! O God!

Claudio. Leonato, stand I here?
Is this the prince? is this the prince's brother?
Is this face Hero's? are our eyes our own?



Leonato. All this is so: but what of this, my lord?

Claudio. Let me but move one question to your daughter;
And, by that fatherly and kindly power
That you have in her, bid her answer truly.



Hero. O, God defend me! how am I beset!
What kind of catechising call you this?

Claudio. To make you answer truly to your name.



Hero. Is it not Hero? Who can blot that name
With any just reproach?

Claudio. Marry, that can Hero;
Hero itself can blot out Hero's virtue.
What man was he talk'd with you yesternight
Out at your window betwixt twelve and one?
Now, if you are a maid, answer to this.



Don John. Fie, fie! they are not to be named, my lord,
Not to be spoke of;
There is not chastity enough in language
Without offence to utter them. Thus, pretty lady,
I am sorry for thy much misgovernment.

Claudio. O Hero, what a Hero hadst thou been,
If half thy outward graces had been placed
About thy thoughts and counsels of thy heart!
But fare thee well, most foul, most fair! farewell,
Thou pure impiety and impious purity!
For thee I'll lock up all the gates of love,
And on my eyelids shall conjecture hang,
To turn all beauty into thoughts of harm,
And never shall it more be gracious.



Don Pedro. Good den, good den.

Claudio. Good day to both of you.



Antonio. If he could right himself with quarreling,
Some of us would lie low.

Claudio. Who wrongs him?



Leonato. Marry, thou dost wrong me; thou dissembler, thou:—
Nay, never lay thy hand upon thy sword;
I fear thee not.

Claudio. Marry, beshrew my hand,
If it should give your age such cause of fear:
In faith, my hand meant nothing to my sword.



Leonato. Tush, tush, man; never fleer and jest at me:
I speak not like a dotard nor a fool,
As under privilege of age to brag
What I have done being young, or what would do
Were I not old. Know, Claudio, to thy head,
Thou hast so wrong'd mine innocent child and me
That I am forced to lay my reverence by
And, with grey hairs and bruise of many days,
Do challenge thee to trial of a man.
I say thou hast belied mine innocent child;
Thy slander hath gone through and through her heart,
And she lies buried with her ancestors;
O, in a tomb where never scandal slept,
Save this of hers, framed by thy villany!

Claudio. My villany?



Leonato. My lord, my lord,
I'll prove it on his body, if he dare,
Despite his nice fence and his active practise,
His May of youth and bloom of lustihood.

Claudio. Away! I will not have to do with you.



(stage directions). [Enter BENEDICK]

Claudio. Now, signior, what news?



Don Pedro. Welcome, signior: you are almost come to part
almost a fray.

Claudio. We had like to have had our two noses snapped off
with two old men without teeth.



Benedick. In a false quarrel there is no true valour. I came
to seek you both.

Claudio. We have been up and down to seek thee; for we are
high-proof melancholy and would fain have it beaten
away. Wilt thou use thy wit?



Don Pedro. Dost thou wear thy wit by thy side?

Claudio. Never any did so, though very many have been beside
their wit. I will bid thee draw, as we do the
minstrels; draw, to pleasure us.



Don Pedro. As I am an honest man, he looks pale. Art thou
sick, or angry?

Claudio. What, courage, man! What though care killed a cat,
thou hast mettle enough in thee to kill care.



Benedick. Sir, I shall meet your wit in the career, and you
charge it against me. I pray you choose another subject.

Claudio. Nay, then, give him another staff: this last was
broke cross.



Don Pedro. By this light, he changes more and more: I think
he be angry indeed.

Claudio. If he be, he knows how to turn his girdle.



Benedick. Shall I speak a word in your ear?

Claudio. God bless me from a challenge!



Benedick. [Aside to CLAUDIO] You are a villain; I jest not:
I will make it good how you dare, with what you
dare, and when you dare. Do me right, or I will
protest your cowardice. You have killed a sweet
lady, and her death shall fall heavy on you. Let me
hear from you.

Claudio. Well, I will meet you, so I may have good cheer.



Don Pedro. What, a feast, a feast?

Claudio. I' faith, I thank him; he hath bid me to a calf's
head and a capon; the which if I do not carve most
curiously, say my knife's naught. Shall I not find
a woodcock too?



Don Pedro. I'll tell thee how Beatrice praised thy wit the
other day. I said, thou hadst a fine wit: 'True,'
said she, 'a fine little one.' 'No,' said I, 'a
great wit:' 'Right,' says she, 'a great gross one.'
'Nay,' said I, 'a good wit:' 'Just,' said she, 'it
hurts nobody.' 'Nay,' said I, 'the gentleman
is wise:' 'Certain,' said she, 'a wise gentleman.'
'Nay,' said I, 'he hath the tongues:' 'That I
believe,' said she, 'for he swore a thing to me on
Monday night, which he forswore on Tuesday morning;
there's a double tongue; there's two tongues.' Thus
did she, an hour together, transshape thy particular
virtues: yet at last she concluded with a sigh, thou
wast the properest man in Italy.

Claudio. For the which she wept heartily and said she cared



Don Pedro. Yea, that she did: but yet, for all that, an if she
did not hate him deadly, she would love him dearly:
the old man's daughter told us all.

Claudio. All, all; and, moreover, God saw him when he was
hid in the garden.



Don Pedro. But when shall we set the savage bull's horns on
the sensible Benedick's head?

Claudio. Yea, and text underneath, 'Here dwells Benedick the
married man'?



Don Pedro. He is in earnest.

Claudio. In most profound earnest; and, I'll warrant you, for
the love of Beatrice.



Don Pedro. And hath challenged thee.

Claudio. Most sincerely.



Don Pedro. What a pretty thing man is when he goes in his
doublet and hose and leaves off his wit!

Claudio. He is then a giant to an ape; but then is an ape a
doctor to such a man.



Don Pedro. How now? two of my brother's men bound! Borachio

Claudio. Hearken after their offence, my lord.



Don Pedro. First, I ask thee what they have done; thirdly, I
ask thee what's their offence; sixth and lastly, why
they are committed; and, to conclude, what you lay
to their charge.

Claudio. Rightly reasoned, and in his own division: and, by
my troth, there's one meaning well suited.



Don Pedro. Runs not this speech like iron through your blood?

Claudio. I have drunk poison whiles he utter'd it.



Don Pedro. He is composed and framed of treachery:
And fled he is upon this villany.

Claudio. Sweet Hero! now thy image doth appear
In the rare semblance that I loved it first.



Leonato. No, not so, villain; thou beliest thyself:
Here stand a pair of honourable men;
A third is fled, that had a hand in it.
I thank you, princes, for my daughter's death:
Record it with your high and worthy deeds:
'Twas bravely done, if you bethink you of it.

Claudio. I know not how to pray your patience;
Yet I must speak. Choose your revenge yourself;
Impose me to what penance your invention
Can lay upon my sin: yet sinn'd I not
But in mistaking.



Leonato. I cannot bid you bid my daughter live;
That were impossible: but, I pray you both,
Possess the people in Messina here
How innocent she died; and if your love
Can labour ought in sad invention,
Hang her an epitaph upon her tomb
And sing it to her bones, sing it to-night:
To-morrow morning come you to my house,
And since you could not be my son-in-law,
Be yet my nephew: my brother hath a daughter,
Almost the copy of my child that's dead,
And she alone is heir to both of us:
Give her the right you should have given her cousin,
And so dies my revenge.

Claudio. O noble sir,
Your over-kindness doth wring tears from me!
I do embrace your offer; and dispose
For henceforth of poor Claudio.



Don Pedro. We will not fail.

Claudio. To-night I'll mourn with Hero.



(stage directions). [Enter DON PEDRO, CLAUDIO, and three or four with tapers]

Claudio. Is this the monument of Leonato?



Lord. It is, my lord.

Claudio. [Reading out of a scroll]
Done to death by slanderous tongues
Was the Hero that here lies:
Death, in guerdon of her wrongs,
Gives her fame which never dies.
So the life that died with shame
Lives in death with glorious fame.
Hang thou there upon the tomb,
Praising her when I am dumb.
Now, music, sound, and sing your solemn hymn.
Pardon, goddess of the night,
Those that slew thy virgin knight;
For the which, with songs of woe,
Round about her tomb they go.
Midnight, assist our moan;
Help us to sigh and groan,
Heavily, heavily:
Graves, yawn and yield your dead,
Till death be uttered,
Heavily, heavily.



Claudio. [Reading out of a scroll]
Done to death by slanderous tongues
Was the Hero that here lies:
Death, in guerdon of her wrongs,
Gives her fame which never dies.
So the life that died with shame
Lives in death with glorious fame.
Hang thou there upon the tomb,
Praising her when I am dumb.
Now, music, sound, and sing your solemn hymn.
Pardon, goddess of the night,
Those that slew thy virgin knight;
For the which, with songs of woe,
Round about her tomb they go.
Midnight, assist our moan;
Help us to sigh and groan,
Heavily, heavily:
Graves, yawn and yield your dead,
Till death be uttered,
Heavily, heavily.

Claudio. Now, unto thy bones good night!
Yearly will I do this rite.



Don Pedro. Good morrow, masters; put your torches out:
The wolves have prey'd; and look, the gentle day,
Before the wheels of Phoebus, round about
Dapples the drowsy east with spots of grey.
Thanks to you all, and leave us: fare you well.

Claudio. Good morrow, masters: each his several way.



Don Pedro. Come, let us hence, and put on other weeds;
And then to Leonato's we will go.

Claudio. And Hymen now with luckier issue speed's
Than this for whom we render'd up this woe.



Leonato. Good morrow, prince; good morrow, Claudio:
We here attend you. Are you yet determined
To-day to marry with my brother's daughter?

Claudio. I'll hold my mind, were she an Ethiope.



Don Pedro. Good morrow, Benedick. Why, what's the matter,
That you have such a February face,
So full of frost, of storm and cloudiness?

Claudio. I think he thinks upon the savage bull.
Tush, fear not, man; we'll tip thy horns with gold
And all Europa shall rejoice at thee,
As once Europa did at lusty Jove,
When he would play the noble beast in love.



Benedick. Bull Jove, sir, had an amiable low;
And some such strange bull leap'd your father's cow,
And got a calf in that same noble feat
Much like to you, for you have just his bleat.

Claudio. For this I owe you: here comes other reckonings.
[Re-enter ANTONIO, with the Ladies masked]
Which is the lady I must seize upon?



Antonio. This same is she, and I do give you her.

Claudio. Why, then she's mine. Sweet, let me see your face.



Leonato. No, that you shall not, till you take her hand
Before this friar and swear to marry her.

Claudio. Give me your hand: before this holy friar,
I am your husband, if you like of me.



Hero. And when I lived, I was your other wife:
And when you loved, you were my other husband.

Claudio. Another Hero!



Leonato. Come, cousin, I am sure you love the gentleman.

Claudio. And I'll be sworn upon't that he loves her;
For here's a paper written in his hand,
A halting sonnet of his own pure brain,
Fashion'd to Beatrice.



Benedick. I'll tell thee what, prince; a college of
wit-crackers cannot flout me out of my humour. Dost
thou think I care for a satire or an epigram? No:
if a man will be beaten with brains, a' shall wear
nothing handsome about him. In brief, since I do
purpose to marry, I will think nothing to any
purpose that the world can say against it; and
therefore never flout at me for what I have said
against it; for man is a giddy thing, and this is my
conclusion. For thy part, Claudio, I did think to
have beaten thee, but in that thou art like to be my
kinsman, live unbruised and love my cousin.

Claudio. I had well hoped thou wouldst have denied Beatrice,
that I might have cudgelled thee out of thy single
life, to make thee a double-dealer; which, out of
question, thou wilt be, if my cousin do not look
exceedingly narrowly to thee.

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