"A Young Man Married Is A Man That's Marred"

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Last Updated on May 7, 2015, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 169

Context: Bertram, the young Count of Rousillon, goes off to serve his ailing king, leaving behind his mother and Helena, daughter of a famous physician. Secretly in love with Bertram, Helena travels to the court, where she cures the king and asks as her fee one of the young lords of the court for a husband. When she chooses Bertram, he complains that her low rank can only defile his noble blood. Ordered by the king to marry Helena, the proud young man consents, but later tells his servant that he will send his new wife home and will "never bed her," but will instead be off to the war.

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Go with me to my chamber, and advise me.
I'll send her straight away. To-morrow
I'll to the wars, she to her single sorrow.
Why these balls bound, there's noise in it. 'Tis hard.
A young man married is a man that's marred.
Therefore away, and leave her bravely; go.
The King has done you wrong; but hush, 'tis so.

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