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All's Well That Ends Well

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Act IV, Scene 4

Florence. The Widow’s house.


[Enter HELENA, Widow, and DIANA]

  • Helena. That you may well perceive I have not wrong'd you,
    One of the greatest in the Christian world
    Shall be my surety; 'fore whose throne 'tis needful, 2425
    Ere I can perfect mine intents, to kneel:
    Time was, I did him a desired office,
    Dear almost as his life; which gratitude
    Through flinty Tartar's bosom would peep forth,
    And answer, thanks: I duly am inform'd 2430
    His grace is at Marseilles; to which place
    We have convenient convoy. You must know
    I am supposed dead: the army breaking,
    My husband hies him home; where, heaven aiding,
    And by the leave of my good lord the king, 2435
    We'll be before our welcome.
  • Widow. Gentle madam,
    You never had a servant to whose trust
    Your business was more welcome.
  • Helena. Nor you, mistress, 2440
    Ever a friend whose thoughts more truly labour
    To recompense your love: doubt not but heaven
    Hath brought me up to be your daughter's dower,
    As it hath fated her to be my motive
    And helper to a husband. But, O strange men! 2445
    That can such sweet use make of what they hate,
    When saucy trusting of the cozen'd thoughts
    Defiles the pitchy night: so lust doth play
    With what it loathes for that which is away.
    But more of this hereafter. You, Diana, 2450
    Under my poor instructions yet must suffer
    Something in my behalf.
  • Diana. Let death and honesty
    Go with your impositions, I am yours
    Upon your will to suffer. 2455
  • Helena. Yet, I pray you:
    But with the word the time will bring on summer,
    When briers shall have leaves as well as thorns,
    And be as sweet as sharp. We must away;
    Our wagon is prepared, and time revives us: 2460
    All's well that ends well; still the fine's the crown;
    Whate'er the course, the end is the renown.