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Full Online Book HomePlaysEvery Man Out Of His Humour - Act 2 - Scene 2
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Every Man Out Of His Humour - Act 2 - Scene 2 Post by :Allnewe Category :Plays Author :Ben Jonson Date :May 2012 Read :3321

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Every Man Out Of His Humour - Act 2 - Scene 2

ACT II - SCENE II

SCENE II. A ROOM IN DELIRO'S HOUSE.

(ENTER DELIRO, MACILENTE, AND FIDO WITH FLOWERS AND PERFUMES.)

DELI.
I'll tell you by and by, sir, --
Welcome good Macilente, to my house,
To sojourn even for ever; if my best
in cates, and every sort of good entreaty,
May move you stay with me.

(HE CENSETH: THE BOY STREWS FLOWERS.)

MACI.
I thank you, sir. --
And yet the muffled Fates, had it pleased them,
Might have supplied me from their own full store.
Without this word, 'I thank you', to a fool.
I see no reason why that dog call'd Chance,
Should fawn upon this fellow more than me;
I am a man, and I have limbs, flesh, blood,
Bones, sinews, and a soul, as well as he:
My parts are every way as good as his;
If I said better, why, I did not lie.
Nath'less, his wealth, but nodding on my wants,
Must make me bow, and cry, 'I thank you, sir'.

(ASIDE.)

DELI.
Dispatch! take heed your mistress see you not.

FIDO.
I warrant you, sir, I'll steal by her softly.

(EXIT.)

DELI.
Nay, gentle friend, be merry; raise your looks
Out of your bosom: I protest, by heaven,
You are the man most welcome in the world.

MACI.
I thank you, sir. -- I know my cue, I think.

(ASIDE.)

(RE-ENTER FIDO, WITH MORE PERFUMES AND FLOWERS.)

FIDO.
Where will you have them burn, sir?

DELI.
Here, good Fido.
What, she did not see thee?

FIDO.
No, sir.

DELI.
That is well
Strew, strew, good Fido, the freshest flowers; so!

MACI.
What means this, signior Deliro? all this censing?

DELI.
Cast in more frankincense, yet more; well said. --
O Macilente, I have such a wife!
So passing fair! so passing-fair-unkind!
But of such worth, and right to be unkind,
Since no man can be worthy of her kindness --

MACI.
What, can there not?

DELI.
No, that is as sure as death,
No man alive. I do not say, is not,
But cannot possibly be worth her kindness,
Nay, it is certain, let me do her right.
How, said I? do her right! as though I could,
As though this dull, gross tongue of mine could utter
The rare, the true, the pure, the infinite rights.
That sit, as high as I can look, within her!

MACI.
This is such dotage as was never heard.

DELI.
Well, this must needs be granted.

MACI.
Granted, quoth you?

DELI.
Nay, Macilente, do not so discredit
The goodness of your judgment to deny it.
For I do speak the very least of her:
And I would crave, and beg no more of Heaven,
For all my fortunes here, but to be able
To utter first in fit terms, what she is,
And then the true joys I conceive in her.

MACI.
Is't possible she should deserve so well,
As you pretend?

DELI.
Ay, and she knows so well
Her own deserts, that, when I strive t'enjoy them,
She weighs the things I do, with what she merits;
And, seeing my worth out-weigh'd so in her graces,
She is so solemn, so precise, so froward,
That no observance I can do to her
Can make her kind to me: if she find fault,
I mend that fault; and then she says, I faulted,
That I did mend it. Now, good friend, advise me,
How I may temper this strange spleen in her.

MACI.
You are too amorous, too obsequious,
And make her too assured she may command you.
When women doubt most of their husbands' loves,
They are most loving. Husbands must take heed
They give no gluts of kindness to their wives,
But use them like their horses; whom they feed
But half a peck at once; and keep them so
Still with an appetite to that they give them.
He that desires to have a loving wife,
Must bridle all the show of that desire:
Be kind, not amorous; nor bewraying kindness,
As if love wrought it, but considerate duty.
Offer no love rites, but let wives still seek them,
For when they come unsought, they seldom like them.

DELI.
Believe me, Macilente, this is gospel.
O, that a man were his own man so much,
To rule himself thus. I will strive, i'faith,
To be more strange and careless; yet I hope
I have now taken such a perfect course,
To make her kind to me, and live contented,
That I shall find my kindness well return'd,
And have no need to fight with my affections.
She late hath found much fault with every room
Within my house; one was too big, she said,
Another was not furnish'd to her mind,
And so through all; all which, now, I have alter'd.
Then here, she hath a place, on my back-side,
Wherein she loves to walk; and that, she said,
Had some ill smells about it: now, this walk
Have I before she knows it, thus perfumed
With herbs, and flowers; and laid in divers places,
As 'twere on altars consecrate to her,
Perfumed gloves, and delicate chains of amber,
To keep the air in awe of her sweet nostrils:
This have I done, and this I think will please her.
Behold, she comes.

(ENTER FALLACE.)

FAL. Here's a sweet stink indeed!
What, shall I ever be thus crost and plagued,
And sick of husband? O, my head doth ache,
As it would cleave asunder, with these savours!
All my rooms alter'd, and but one poor walk
That I delighted in, and that is made
So fulsome with perfumes, that I am fear'd,
My brain doth sweat so, I have caught the plague!

DELI.
Why, gentle wife, is now thy walk too sweet?
Thou said'st of late, it had sour airs about it,
And found'st much fault that I did not correct it.

FAL.
Why, an I did find fault, sir?

DELI.
Nay, dear wife,
I know thou hast said thou has loved perfumes,
No woman better.

FAL.
Ay, long since, perhaps;
But now that sense is alter'd: you would have me,
Like to a puddle, or a standing pool,
To have no motion nor no spirit within me.
No. I am like a pure and sprightly river,
That moves for ever, and yet still the same;
Or fire, that burns much wood, yet still one flame.

DELI.
But yesterday, I saw thee at our garden,
Smelling on roses, and on purple flowers;
And since, I hope, the humour of thy sense
Is nothing changed.

FAL.
Why, those were growing flowers,
And these within my walk are cut and strewed.

DELI.
But yet they have one scent.

FAL.
Ay! have they so?
In your gross judgment. If you make no difference
Betwixt the scent of growing flowers and cut ones,
You have a sense to taste lamp oil, i'faith:
And with such judgment have you changed the chambers,
Leaving no room, that I can joy to be in,
In all your house; and now my walk, and all,
You smoke me from, as if I were a fox,
And long, belike, to drive me quite away:
Well, walk you there, and I'll walk where I list.

DELI.
What shall I do? O, I shall never please her.

MACI.
Out on thee, dotard! what star ruled his birth,
That brought him such a Star? blind Fortune still
Bestows her gifts on such as cannot use them:
How long shall I live, ere I be so happy
To have a wife of this exceeding form?
(ASIDE.

DELI.
Away with 'em! would I had broke a joint
When I devised this, that should so dislike her.
Away, bear all away.

(EXIT FIDO, WITH FLOWERS, ETC.)

FAL.
Ay, do; for fear
Aught that is there should like her. O, this man,
How cunningly he can conceal himself,
As though he loved, nay, honour'd and ador'd! --

DELI.
Why, my sweet heart?

FAL.
Sweet heart! O, better still!
And asking, why? wherefore? and looking strangely,
As if he were as white as innocence!
Alas, you're simple, you: you cannot change,
Look pale at pleasure, and then red with wonder;
No, no, not you! 'tis pity o' your naturals.
I did but cast an amorous eye, e'en now,
Upon a pair of gloves that somewhat liked me,
And straight he noted it, and gave command
All should be ta'en away.

DELI.
Be they my bane then!
What, sirrah, Fido, bring in those gloves again
You took from hence.

FAL.
'Sbody, sir, but do not:
Bring in no gloves to spite me; if you do --

DELI.
Ay me, most wretched; how am I misconstrued!

MACI.
O, how she tempts my heart-strings with her eye,
To knit them to her beauties, or to break!
What mov'd the heavens, that they could not make
Me such a woman! but a man, a beast,
That hath no bliss like others? Would to heaven,
In wreak of my misfortunes, I were turn'd
To some fair water-nymph, that set upon
The deepest whirl-pit of the rav'nous seas,
My adamantine eyes might headlong hale
This iron world to me, and drown it all.

(ASIDE.)
COR.
Behold, behold, the translated gallant.

MIT.
O, he is welcome.

(ENTER FUNGOSO, APPARELLED LIKE FASTIDIOUS BRISK.)

FUNG.
Save you, brother and sister; save you, sir! I have commendations for you out o' the country. I wonder they take no knowledge of my suit: (ASIDE.) -- Mine uncle Sogliardo is in town. Sister methinks you are melancholy; why are you so sad? I think you took me for Master Fastidious Brisk, sister, did you not?

FAL.
Why should I take you for him?

FUNG.
Nay, nothing. -- I was lately in Master Fastidious's company, and methinks we are very like.

DELI.
You have a fair suit, brother, 'give you joy on't.

FUNG.
Faith, good enough to ride in, brother; I made it to ride in.

FAL.
O, now I see the cause of his idle demand was his new suit.

DELI.
Pray you, good brother, try if you can change her mood.

FUNG.
I warrant you, let me alone: I'll put her out of her dumps. Sister, how like you my suit!

FAL.
O, you are a gallant in print now, brother.

FUNG.
Faith, how like you the fashion? it is the last edition, I assure you.

FAL.
I cannot but like it to the desert.

FUNG.
Troth, sister, I was fain to borrow these spurs, I have left my gown in the gage for them, pray you lend me an angel.

FAL.
Now, beshrew my heart then.

FUNG.
Good truth, I'll pay you again at my next exhibition. I had but bare ten pound of my father, and it would not reach to put me wholly into the fashion.

FAL.
I care not.

FUNG.
I had spurs of mine own before, but they were not ginglers. Monsieur Fastidious will be here anon, sister.

FAL.
You jest!

FUNG.
Never lend me penny more while you live then; and that I'd be loth to say, in truth.

FAL.
When did you see him?

FUNG.
Yesterday; I came acquainted with him at Sir Puntarvolo's: nay, sweet sister.


MACI.
I fain would know of heaven now, why yond fool
Should wear a suit of satin? he? that rook,
That painted jay, with such a deal of outside:
What is his inside, trow? ha, ha, ha, ha, ha!
Good heavens, give me patience, patience, patience.
A number of these popinjays there are,
Whom, if a man confer, and but examine
Their inward merit, with such men as want;
Lord, lord, what things they are!

(ASIDE.)

FAL.
(GIVES HIM MONEY.)
Come, when will you pay me again, now?

FUNG.
O lord, sister!

MACI.
Here comes another.

(ENTER FASTIDIOUS BRISK, IN A NEW SUIT.)

FAST.
Save you, signior Deliro! How dost thou, sweet lady? let me kiss thee.

FUNG.
How! a new suit? ah me!

DELI.
And how does master Fastidious Brisk?

FAST.
Faith, live in court, signior Deliro; in grace, I thank God, both of the noble masculine and feminine. I muse speak with you in private by and by.

DELI.
When you please, sir.

FAL.
Why look you so pale, brother?

FUNG.
'Slid, all this money is cast away now.

MACI.
Ay, there's a newer edition come forth.

FUNG.
'Tis but my hard fortune! well, I'll have my suit changed. I'll go fetch my tailor presently but first, I'll devise a letter to my father. Have you any pen and ink, sister?

FAL.
What would you do withal?

FUNG.
I would use it. 'Slight, an it had come but four days sooner, the fashion.

(EXIT.)

FAST.
There was a countess gave me her hand to kiss to-day, i' the presence: did me more good by that light than -- and yesternight sent her coach twice to my lodging, to intreat me accompany her, and my sweet mistress, with some two or three nameless ladies more: O, I have been graced by them beyond all aim of affection: this is her garter my dagger hangs in: and they do so commend and approve my apparel, with my judicious wearing of it, it's above wonder.

FAL.
Indeed, sir, 'tis a most excellent suit, and you do wear it as extraordinary.

FAST.
Why, I'll tell you now, in good faith, and by this chair, which, by the grace of God, I intend presently to sit in, I had three suits in one year made three great ladies in love with me: I had other three, undid three gentlemen in imitation: and other three gat three other gentlemen widows of three thousand pound a year.

DELI.
Is't possible?

FAST.
O, believe it, sir; your good face is the witch, and your apparel the spells, that bring all the pleasures of the world into their circle.

FAL.
Ah, the sweet grace of a courtier!

MACI.
Well, would my father had left me but a good face for my portion yet! though I had shared the unfortunate with that goes with it, I had not cared; I might have passed for somewhat in the world then.

FAST.
Why, assure you, signior, rich apparel has strange virtues: it makes him that hath it without means, esteemed for an excellent wit: he that enjoys it with means, puts the world in remembrance of his means: it helps the deformities of nature, and gives lustre to her beauties; makes continual holiday where it shines; sets the wits of ladies at work, that otherwise would be idle; furnisheth your two-shilling ordinary; takes possession of your stage at your new play; and enricheth your oars, as scorning to go with your scull.

MACI.
Pray you, sir, add this; it gives respect to your fools, makes many thieves, as many strumpets, and no fewer bankrupts.

FAL.
Out, out! unworthy to speak where he breatheth.

FAST.
What's he, signior?

DELI.
A friend of mine, sir.

FAST.
By heaven I wonder at you citizens, what kind of creatures you are!

DELI.
Why, sir?

FAST.
That you can consort yourselves with such poor seam-rent fellows.

FAL.
He says true.

DELI.
Sir, I will assure you, however you esteem of him, he's a man worthy of regard.

FAST.
Why, what has he in him of such virtue to be regarded, ha?

DELI.
Marry, he is a scholar, sir.

FAST.
Nothing else!

DELI.
And he is well travell'd.

FAST.
He should get him clothes; I would cherish those good parts of travel in him, and prefer him to some nobleman of good place.

DELI.
Sir, such a benefit should bine me to you for ever, in my friend's right; and I doubt not, but his desert shall more than answer my praise.

FAST.
Why, an he had good clothes, I'd carry him to court with me to-morrow.

DELI.
He shall not want for those, sir, if gold and the whole city will furnish him.

FAST.
You say well, sir: faith, signior Deliro, I am come to have you play the alchemist with me, and change the species of my land into that metal you talk of.

DELI.
With all my heart, sir; what sum will serve you?

FAST.
Faith, some three or four hundred.

DELI.
Troth, sir, I have promised to meet a gentleman this morning in Paul's, but upon my return I'll dispatch you.

FAST.
I'll accompany you thither.

DELI.
As you please, sir; but I go not thither directly.

FAST.
'Tis no matter, I have no other designment in hand, and therefore as good go along.

DELI.
I were as good have a quartain fever follow me now, for I shall ne'er be rid of him. Bring me a cloak there, one. Still, upon his grace at court, I am sure to be visited; I was a beast to give him any hope. Well, would I were in, that I am out with him once, and -- Come, signior Macilente, I must confer with you, as we go. Nay, dear wife, I beseech thee, forsake these moods: look not like winter thus. Here, take my keys, open my counting-houses, spread all my wealth before thee, choose any object that delights thee: if thou wilt eat the spirit of gold, and drink dissolved pearl in wine, 'tis for thee.

FAL.
So, sir!

DELI.
Nay, my sweet wife.

FAL.
Good lord, how you are perfumed in your terms and all! pray you leave us.

DELI.
Come, gentlemen.

FAST. Adieu, sweet lady.

(EXEUNT ALL BUT FALLACE.)

FAL.
Ay, ay! let thy words ever sound in mine ears, and thy graces disperse contentment through all my senses! O, how happy is that lady above other ladies, that enjoys so absolute a gentleman to her servant! "A countess gives him her hand to kiss": ah, foolish countess! he's a man worthy, if a woman may speak of a man's worth, to kiss the lips of an empress.

(RE-ENTER FUNGOSO, WITH HIS TAILOR.)

FUNG.
What's master Fastidious gone, sister?

FAL.
Ay, brother. -- He has a face like a cherubin! (ASIDE.)

FUNG.
'Ods me, what luck's this? I have fetch'd my tailor and all: which way went he, sister, can you tell?

FAL.
Not I, in good faith -- and he has a body like an angel!
(ASIDE.)

FUNG.
How long is't since he went?

FAL.
Why, but e'en now; did you not meet him? -- and a tongue able to ravish any woman in the earth.
(ASIDE.)

FUNG.
O, for God's sake -- I'll please you for your pains,

(TO HIS TAILOR.)

-- But e'en now, say you? Come, good sir: 'slid, I had forgot it too: if any body ask for mine uncle Sogliardo, they shall have him at the herald's office yonder, by Paul's.

(EXIT WITH HIS TAILOR.)

FAL.
Well, I will not altogether despair: I have heard of a citizen's wife has been beloved of a courtier; and why not I? heigh, ho! well, I will into my private chamber, lock the door to me, and think over all his good parts one after another.

(EXIT.)

MIT.
Well, I doubt, this last scene will endure some grievous torture.

COR.
How? you fear 'twill be rack'd by some hard construction?

MIT.
Do not you?

COR.
No, in good faith: unless mine eyes could light me beyond sense. I see no reason why this should be more liable to the rack than the rest: you'll say, perhaps, the city will not take it well that the merchant is made here to doat so perfectly upon his wife; and she again to be so 'Fastidiously' affected as she is.

MIT.
You have utter'd my thought, sir, indeed.

COR.
Why, by that proportion, the court might as well take offence at him we call the courtier, and with much more pretext, by how much the place transcends, and goes before in dignity and virtue: but can you imagine that any noble or true spirit in court, whose sinewy and altogether unaffected graces, very worthily express him a courtier, will make any exception at the opening of such as empty trunk as this Brisk is? or think his own worth impeached, by beholding his motley inside?

MIT.
No, sir, I do not.

COR.
No more, assure you, will any grave, wise citizen, or modest matron, take the object of this folly in Deliro and his wife; but rather apply it as the foil to their own virtues. For that were to affirm, that a man writing of Nero, should mean all emperors; or speaking of Machiavel, comprehend all statesmen; or in our Sordido, all farmers; and so of the rest: than which nothing can be uttered more malicious or absurd. Indeed there are a sort of these narrow-eyed decypherers, I confess, that will extort strange and abstruse meanings out of any subject, be it never so conspicuous and innocently delivered. But to such, where'er they sit concealed, let them know, the author defies them and their writing-tables; and hopes no sound or safe judgment will infect itself with their contagious comments, who, indeed, come here only to pervert and poison the sense of what they hear, and for nought else.

(ENTER CAVALIER SHIFT, WITH TWO SI-QUISSES (BILLS) IN HIS HAND.)

MIT.
Stay, what new mute is this, that walks so suspiciously?

COR.
O, marry, this is one, for whose better illustration, we must desire you to presuppose the stage, the middle aisle in Paul's, and that, the west end of it.

MIT.
So, sir, and what follows?

COR.
Faith, a whole volume of humour, and worthy the unclasping.

MIT.
As how? What name do you give him first?

COR.
He hath shift of names, sir: some call him Apple-John, some signior Whiffe; marry, his main standing name is cavalier Shirt: the rest are but as clean shirts to his natures.

MIT.
And what makes he in Paul's now?

COR.
Troth, as you see, for the advancement of a 'si quis', or two; wherein he has so varied himself, that if any of 'em take, he may hull up and down in the humorous world a little longer.

MIT.
It seems then he bears a very changing sail?

COR.
O, as the wind, sir: here comes more.

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