Measure for Measure


Text
Act I
Act II
Act III
Act IV
Act V
Enter Duke, disguised as a friar, and Provost


DUKE

Hail to you, provost – so I think you are.


PROVOST

I am the provost. What's your will, good friar?


DUKE

Bound by my charity and my blessed order,

I come to visit the afflicted spirits

Here in the prison. Do me the common right

To let me see them and to make me know

The nature of their crimes, that I may minister

To them accordingly.


PROVOST

I would do more than that, if more were needful.

Enter Juliet
gentlewoman (n.) woman of good breeding, well-born lady See Topics: Address forms

Look, here comes one: a gentlewoman of mine,

Who, falling in the flaws of her own youth,
flaw (n.) 2 burst of passion, upsurge of feelings

Hath blistered her report. She is with child,
blister (v.) raise blisters on [as if branded on the forehead as a whore]; tarnish, stain
report (n.) 1 reputation, fame, renown

And he that got it, sentenced: a young man

More fit to do another such offence

Than die for this.


DUKE

When must he die?


PROVOST

                         As I do think, tomorrow.

(To Juliet) I have provided for you; stay a while

And you shall be conducted.


DUKE

Repent you, fair one, of the sin you carry?


JULIET

I do, and bear the shame most patiently.


DUKE

I'll teach you how you shall arraign your conscience
arraign (v.) 3 examine, interrogate, probe

And try your penitence, if it be sound,
try (v.) 2 put to the test, test the goodness [of]

Or hollowly put on.
hollowly (adv.) insincerely, hypocritically, deceitfully


JULIET

                         I'll gladly learn.


DUKE

Love you the man that wronged you?


JULIET

Yes, as I love the woman that wronged him.


DUKE

So then it seems your most offenceful act
offenceful (adj.) sinful, wrongful, full of offence

Was mutually committed?


JULIET

                         Mutually.


DUKE

Then was your sin of heavier kind than his.
heavy (adj.) 2 grave, serious, weighty


JULIET

I do confess it, and repent it, father.


DUKE

'Tis meet so, daughter, but lest you do repent
meet (adj.) 1 fit, suitable, right, proper See Topics: Frequency count

As that the sin hath brought you to this shame,

Which sorrow is always towards ourselves, not heaven,

Showing we would not spare heaven as we love it,
spare (v.) 4 avoid offending, refrain from causing distress to

But as we stand in fear –


JULIET

I do repent me as it is an evil,

And take the shame with joy.


DUKE

                         There rest.

Your partner, as I hear, must die tomorrow,

And I am going with instruction to him.
instruction (n.) 1 advice, good direction, counsel

Grace go with you. Benedicite.

Exit


JULIET

Must die tomorrow? O injurious love,

That respites me a life whose very comfort
respite (v.) save, prolong, grant

Is still a dying horror.


PROVOST

                         'Tis pity of him.

Exeunt

 
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