Twelfth Night eText - Act IV

This eText contains embedded glossary terms and other notes added by our community of educators. Simply mouseover or tap on the yellow highlighted words within the text to see the annotations.
Turn Off

Act IV

Scene I

Before Olivia's house.

[Enter Sebastian and Clown.]

[Enter Sir Andrew, Sir Toby, and Fabian.]

[Beating Sir Andrew.]

[Exit Clown.]

[Holding Sebastian.]

[Draws.]

[Enter Olivia.]

[Exeunt.]

CLOWN:
Will you make me believe that I am not sent for you?
SEBASTIAN:
Go to, go to, thou art a foolish fellow;
Let me be clear of thee.
CLOWN:
Well held out, i' faith! No, I do not know you; nor I am
not sent to you by my lady, to bid you come speak with her;(5)
nor your name is not Master Cesario; nor this is not my nose
neither. Nothing that is so is so.
SEBASTIAN:
I prithee, vent thy folly somewhere else: Thou know'st
not me.
CLOWN:
Vent my folly! he has heard that word of some great man(10)
and now applies it to a fool. Vent my folly! I am afraid this
great lubber, the world, will prove a cockney. I prithee now,
ungird thy strangeness and tell me what I shall vent to my
lady: shall I vent to her that thou art coming?
SEBASTIAN:
I prithee, foolish Greek, depart from me:(15)
There's money for thee: if you tarry longer,
I shall give worse payment.
CLOWN:
By my troth, thou hast an open hand. These wise men
that give fools money get themselves a good report—after
fourteen years' purchase.(20)
SIR ANDREW:
Now, sir, have I met you again?
there's for you.

[To Sebastian.]

[Striking Sebastian.]

SEBASTIAN:
Why, there's for thee, and there, and there. Are all the
people mad?
SIR TOBY:
Hold, sir, or I'll throw your dagger o'er the house.(25)
CLOWN:
This will I tell my lady straight. I would not be in
some of your coats for two pence.
SIR TOBY:
Come on, sir; hold.
SIR ANDREW:
Nay, let him alone: I'll go another way to work
with him; I'll have an action of battery against him, if(30)
there be any law in Illyria: though I struck him first, yet
it's no matter for that.
SEBASTIAN:
Let go thy hand.
SIR TOBY:
Come, sir, I will not let you go. Come, my young
soldier, put up your iron: you are well fleshed; come(35)
on.
SEBASTIAN:
I will be free from thee. What wouldst thou now?
If thou dar'st tempt me further, draw thy sword.
SIR TOBY:
What, what? Nay, then I must have an ounce or two
of this malapert blood from you.(40)
OLIVIA:
Hold, Toby; on thy life, I charge thee hold.
SIR TOBY:
Madam!
OLIVIA:
Will it be ever thus? Ungracious wretch,
Fit for the mountains and the barbarous caves,
Where manners ne'er were preach'd! Out of my sight!(45)
Be not offended, dear Cesario.
Rudesby, be gone!
I pr'ythee, gentle friend,
Let thy fair wisdom, not thy passion, sway
In this uncivil and unjust extent(50)
Against thy peace. Go with me to my house,
And hear thou there how many fruitless pranks
This ruffian hath botch'd up, that thou thereby
Mayst smile at this: thou shalt not choose but go;
Do not deny. Beshrew his soul for me,(55)
He started one poor heart of mine in thee.

[Exeunt Sir Toby, Sir Andrew, and Fabian.]

SEBASTIAN:
What relish is in this? how runs the stream?
Or I am mad, or else this is a dream:
Let fancy still my sense in Lethe steep;(60)
If it be thus to dream, still let me sleep!
OLIVIA:
Nay, come, I prithee; would thou'dst be ruled by
me!
SEBASTIAN:
Madam, I will.
OLIVIA:
O, say so, and so be!

Scene II

Olivia's house.

[Enter Maria and Clown.]

[Exit Maria.]

[Enter Sir Toby and Maria.]

[Exeunt Sir Toby and Maria.]

[Exit.]

MARIA:
Nay, I prithee, put on this gown and this beard; make
him believe thou art Sir Topas the curate. Do it quickly; I'll
call Sir Toby the whilst.
CLOWN:
Well, I'll put it on, and I will dissemble myself in't; and
I would I were the first that ever dissembled in such a gown.(5)
I am not tall enough to become the function well, nor lean
enough to be thought a good student; but to be said an honest
man and a good housekeeper goes as fairly as to say a
careful man and a great scholar. The competitors enter.
SIR TOBY:
Jove bless thee, Master Parson.(10)
CLOWN:
Bonos dies, Sir Toby: for, as the old hermit of Prague,
that never saw pen and ink, very wittily said to a niece of
King Gorboduc, ‘That that is, is.’ So I, being master parson,
am Master Parson; for, what is ‘that’ but ‘that’? and ‘is’ but
‘is’?(15)
SIR TOBY:
To him, Sir Topas.
CLOWN:
What, ho, I say! Peace in this prison!
SIR TOBY:
The knave counterfeits well; a good knave.
MALVOLIO:
Who calls there?

[From within.]

CLOWN:
Sir Topas the curate, who comes to visit Malvolio the(20)
lunatic.
MALVOLIO:
Sir Topas, Sir Topas, good Sir Topas, go to my lady.
CLOWN:
Out, hyperbolical fiend! how vexest thou this man!
talkest thou nothing but of ladies?
SIR TOBY:
Well said, Master Parson.(25)
MALVOLIO:
Sir Topas, never was man thus wronged: good Sir
Topas, do not think I am mad: they have laid me here in
hideous darkness.
CLOWN:
Fie, thou dishonest Satan! I call thee by the most modest
terms; for I am one of those gentle ones that will use(30)
the devil himself with courtesy. Sayest thou that house
is dark?
MALVOLIO:
As hell, Sir Topas.
CLOWN:
Why, it hath bay windows transparent as
barricadoes, and the clearstores toward the south north(35)
are as lustrous as ebony; and yet complainest thou of
obstruction?
MALVOLIO:
I am not mad, Sir Topas: I say to you this house
is dark.
CLOWN:
Madman, thou errest: I say there is no darkness(40)
but ignorance; in which thou art more puzzled than the
Egyptians in their fog.
MALVOLIO:
I say, this house is as dark as ignorance, though
ignorance were as dark as hell; and I say, there was never
man thus abused. I am no more mad than you are: make(45)
the trial of it in any constant question.
CLOWN:
What is the opinion of Pythagoras concerning wild
fowl?
MALVOLIO:
That the soul of our grandam might haply
inhabit a bird.(50)
CLOWN:
What thinkest thou of his opinion?
MALVOLIO:
I think nobly of the soul, and no way approve his
opinion.
CLOWN:
Fare thee well. Remain thou still in darkness: thou
shalt hold the opinion of Pythagoras ere I will allow of(55)
thy wits; and fear to kill a woodcock, lest thou dispossess
the soul of thy grandam. Fare thee well.
MALVOLIO:
Sir Topas, Sir Topas!
SIR TOBY:
My most exquisite Sir Topas!(60)
CLOWN:
Nay, I am for all waters.
MARIA:
Thou mightst have done this without thy beard and
gown: he sees thee not.
SIR TOBY:
To him in thine own voice, and bring me word
how thou findest him: I would we were well rid of this(65)
knavery. If he may be conveniently delivered, I would
he were; for I am now so far in offence with my niece that
I cannot pursue with any safety this sport to the upshot.
Come by and by to my chamber.
CLOWN:
‘Hey, Robin, jolly Robin,(70)
Tell me how thy lady does.’

[Sings.]

MALVOLIO:
Fool!
CLOWN:
‘My lady is unkind, perdy.’
MALVOLIO:
Fool!(75)
CLOWN:
‘Alas, why is she so?’
MALVOLIO:
Fool, I say!
CLOWN:
‘She loves another.’
Who calls, ha?
MALVOLIO:
Good fool, as ever thou wilt deserve well at my(80)
hand, help me to a candle, and pen, ink, and paper; as I am
a gentleman, I will live to be thankful to thee for't.
CLOWN:
Master Malvolio?
MALVOLIO:
Ay, good fool.
CLOWN:
Alas, sir, how fell you besides your five wits?(85)
MALVOLIO:
Fool, there was never man so notoriously abused: I
am as well in my wits, fool, as thou art.
CLOWN:
But as well? then you are mad indeed, if you be no better
in your wits than a fool.
MALVOLIO:
They have here propertied me; keep me in darkness,(90)
send ministers to me, asses, and do all they can to face
me out of my wits.
CLOWN:
Advise you what you say; the minister is here.
Malvolio, Malvolio, thy wits the heavens restore! endeavour
thyself to sleep, and leave thy vain bibble babble.(95)
MALVOLIO:
Sir Topas!
CLOWN:
Maintain no words with him, good fellow. Who, I,
sir? not I, sir. God be wi' you, good Sir Topas. Marry, amen.
I will, sir, I will.
MALVOLIO:
Fool, fool, fool, I say!(100)
CLOWN:
Alas, sir, be patient. What say you, sir? I am shent for
speaking to you.
MALVOLIO:
Good fool, help me to some light and some paper: I
tell thee I am as well in my wits as any man in Illyria.
CLOWN:
Well-a-day that you were, sir!(105)
MALVOLIO:
By this hand, I am. Good fool, some ink, paper, and
light; and convey what I will set down to my lady: it shall
advantage thee more than ever the bearing of letter did.
CLOWN:
I will help you to't. But tell me true, are you not mad
indeed? or do you but countefeit?(110)
MALVOLIO:
Believe me, I am not; I tell thee true.
CLOWN:
Nay, I'll ne'er believe a madman till I see his brains.
I will fetch you light, and paper, and ink.
MALVOLIO:
Fool, I'll requite it in the highest degree: I
prithee, be gone.
CLOWN:
[Sings.](115)
'I am gone, sir,
And anon, sir,
I'll be with you again,
In a trice,(120)
Like to the old vice,
Your need to sustain;
Who with dagger of lath,
In his rage and his wrath,
Cries ah, ha! to the devil:
Like a mad lad,(125)
‘Pare thy nails, dad.
Adieu, goodman devil.’

Scene III

Olivia's Garden.

[Enter Sebastian.]

[Enter Olivia and a Priest.]

[Exeunt.]

SEBASTIAN:
This is the air; that is the glorious sun;
This pearl she gave me, I do feel't and see't;
And though 'tis wonder that enwraps me thus,
Yet 'tis not madness. Where's Antonio, then?
I could not find him at the Elephant:(5)
Yet there he was; and there I found this credit,
That he did range the town to seek me out.
His counsel now might do me golden service;
For though my soul disputes well with my sense,
That this may be some error, but no madness,(10)
Yet doth this accident and flood of fortune
So far exceed all instance, all discourse,
That I am ready to distrust mine eyes
And wrangle with my reason that persuades me
To any other trust but that I am mad(15)
Or else the lady's mad; yet, if 'twere so,
She could not sway her house, command her followers,
Take and give back affairs and their dispatch
With such a smooth, discreet, and stable bearing,
As I perceive she does: there's something in't(20)
That is deceivable. But here comes the lady.
OLIVIA:
Blame not this haste of mine. If you mean well,
Now go with me and with this holy man
Into the chantry by: there, before him
And underneath that consecrated roof,(25)
Plight me the full assurance of your faith,
That my most jealous and too doubtful soul
May live at peace. He shall conceal it
Whiles you are willing it shall come to note,
What time we will our celebration keep(30)
According to my birth. What do you say?
SEBASTIAN:
I'll follow this good man, and go with you;
And, having sworn truth, ever will be true.
OLIVIA:
Then lead the way, good father; and heavens so shine,
That they may fairly note this act of mine!(35)