Remembering Shakespeare

It’s been so long since I have read sir W that I almost forgot how amazing he was. Here’s a small bit from A Comedy Of Errors; it helps if you read it out loud, or just imagine your mother/grandmother in the role of Adriana. I absolutely LOVE how Shakespeare portrays his women. Every time.

ADRIANA
Say, is your tardy master now at hand?
DROMIO OF EPHESUS
Nay, he’s at two hands with me, and that my two ears
can witness.
ADRIANA
Say, didst thou speak with him? know’st thou his mind?
DROMIO OF EPHESUS
Ay, ay, he told his mind upon mine ear:
Beshrew his hand, I scarce could understand it.
LUCIANA
Spake he so doubtfully, thou couldst not feel his meaning?
DROMIO OF EPHESUS
Nay, he struck so plainly, I could too well feel his
blows; and withal so doubtfully that I could scarce
understand them.
ADRIANA
But say, I prithee, is he coming home? It seems he
hath great care to please his wife.
DROMIO OF EPHESUS
Why, mistress, sure my master is horn-mad.
ADRIANA
Horn-mad, thou villain!
DROMIO OF EPHESUS
I mean not cuckold-mad;
But, sure, he is stark mad.
When I desired him to come home to dinner,
He ask’d me for a thousand marks in gold:
”Tis dinner-time,’ quoth I; ‘My gold!’ quoth he;
‘Your meat doth burn,’ quoth I; ‘My gold!’ quoth he:
‘Will you come home?’ quoth I; ‘My gold!’ quoth he.
‘Where is the thousand marks I gave thee, villain?’
‘The pig,’ quoth I, ‘is burn’d;’ ‘My gold!’ quoth he:
‘My mistress, sir’ quoth I; ‘Hang up thy mistress!
I know not thy mistress; out on thy mistress!’
LUCIANA
Quoth who?
DROMIO OF EPHESUS
Quoth my master:
‘I know,’ quoth he, ‘no house, no wife, no mistress.’
So that my errand, due unto my tongue,
I thank him, I bare home upon my shoulders;
For, in conclusion, he did beat me there.
ADRIANA
Go back again, thou slave, and fetch him home.
DROMIO OF EPHESUS
Go back again, and be new beaten home?
For God’s sake, send some other messenger.
ADRIANA
Back, slave, or I will break thy pate across.
DROMIO OF EPHESUS
And he will bless that cross with other beating:
Between you I shall have a holy head.
ADRIANA
Hence, prating peasant! fetch thy master home.
DROMIO OF EPHESUS
Am I so round with you as you with me,
That like a football you do spurn me thus?
You spurn me hence, and he will spurn me hither:
If I last in this service, you must case me in leather.
Exit
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