Stand thee by, friar. Father, by your leave:
Will you with free and unconstrained soul
Give me this maid,
As freely, son, as God did give her me.
And what have I to give you back, whose worth
May counterpoise this rich and precious gift?
Nothing, unless you render her again.
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
O, what authority and show of truth
Can cunning sin cover itself withal!
Comes not that blood as
To witness simple virtue? Would you not swear,
All you that see her, that she were
By these exterior shows? But she is none:
She knows the heat of a luxurious bed;
Her blush is
guiltiness, not modesty.
What do you mean, my lord?
Not to be married,
Not to knit my soul to an approved wanton.
Dear my lord, if you, in your own proof,
Have vanquish'd the resistance of her youth,
And made defeat of
I know what you would say: if I have known her,
You will say she did embrace me as a husband,
extenuate the 'forehand sin:
I never tempted her with word too large;
But, as a brother to his
Bashful sincerity and comely love.
And seem'd I ever otherwise to you?
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
rage in savage sensuality.
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