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Corb. O, but colour?

Mos. This will, sir, you shall send it unto me. Now, when I come to inforce, as I will do, Your cares, your watchings, and your many prayers, Your more than many gifts, your this day's present, And last, produce your will; where, without thought, Or least regard, unto your proper issue,

A son so brave, and highly meriting,

The stream of your diverted love hath thrown you
Upon my master, and made him your heir:
He cannot be so stupid, or stone-dead,
But out of conscience, and mere gratitude-
Corb. He must pronounce me his?
Mos. 'Tis true.

Corb. This plot

Did I think on before.

Mos. I do believe it.

Corb. Do you not believe it?

Mos. Yes, sir.

Corb. Mine own project.

Mos. Which, when he hath done, sir-
Corb. Publish'd me his heir?

Mos. And you so certain to survive him-
Corb. Ay.

Mos. Being so lusty a man-
Corb. 'Tis true.

Mos. Yes, sir

Corb. I thought on that too. should be

See, how he

The very organ to express my thoughts!
Mos. You have not only done yourself a good-
Corb. But multiplied it on my son.

Mos. 'Tis right, sir.
Corb. Still, my invention.

Mos. 'Las, sir! heaven knows,
It hath been all my study, all my care,
(I e'en grow gray withal) how to work things-
Corb. I do conceive, sweet Mosca.

Mos. You are he,

For whom I labour here.

Corb. Ay, do, do, do : I'll straight about it.

Mos. Rook go with you, raven !
Corb. I know thee honest.

[Going.

Mos. You do lie, sir!

[Aside.

Corb. And

Mos. Your knowledge is no better than your ears, sir. Corb. I do not doubt, to be a father to thee.

Mos. Nor I to gull my brother of his blessing.

Corb. I may have my youth restored to me, why not? Mos. Your worship is a precious ass!

Corb. What say'st thou ?

Mos. I do desire your worship to make haste, sir.
Corb. 'Tis done, 'tis done; I go.

Volp. [leaping from his couch.] O, I shall burst! Let out my sides, let out my sides

Mos. Contain

Your flux of laughter, sir: you know this hope
Is such a bait, it covers any hook.

Volp. O, but thy working, and thy placing it!
I cannot hold; good rascal, let me kiss thee:
I never knew thee in so rare a humour.

[Exit.

Mos. Alas, sir, I but do as I am taught;
Follow your grave instructions; give them words;
Pour oil into their ears, and send them hence.

Volp. "Tis, true, 'tis true. What a rare punishment Is avarice to itself!

Mos. Ay, with our help, sir.

Volp. So many cares, so many maladies, So many fears attending on old age, Yea, death so often call'd on, as no wish Can be more frequent with them, their limbs faint, Their senses dull, their seeing, hearing, going, All dead before them; yea, their very teeth, Their instruments of eating, failing them: Yet this is reckon'd life! nay, here was one, Is now gone home, that wishes to live longer! Feels not his gout, nor palsy; feigns himself Younger by scores of years, flatters his age With confident belying it, hopes he may, With charms, like Eson, have his youth restored : And with these thoughts so battens, as if fate Would be as easily cheated on, as he, [now a third ! And all turns air! [Knocking within.] Who's that there, Mos. Close, to your couch again; I hear his voice : It is Corvino, our spruce merchant.

Volp. [lies down as before.] Dead.

Mos. Another bout, sir, with your eyes. [Anointing them.]-Who's there?

Enter CORVINO.

Signior Corvino ! come most wish'd for! O,
How happy were you, if you knew it, now!
Corv. Why? what? wherein ?

Mos. The tardy hour is come, sir.
Corv. He is not dead?

Mos. Not dead, sir, but as good;

He knows no man.

Corv. How shall I do then?

Mos. Why, sir?

Corv. I have brought him here a pearl.
Mos. Perhaps he has

So much remembrance left, as to know you, sir:

He still calls on you; nothing but your name
Is in his mouth. Is your pearl orient, sir?
Corv. Venice was never owner of the like.
Volp. [faintly.] Signior Corvino !
Mos. Hark.

Volp. Signior Corvino !

Mos. He calls you; step and give it him.-
He's here, sir,

And he has brought you a rich pearl.
Corv. How do you, sir?

Tell him, it doubles the twelfth caract.

Mos. Sir,

He cannot understand, his hearing's gone;
And yet it comforts him to see you-
Corv. Say,

I have a diamond for him, too.
Mos. Best shew it, sir;

Put it into his hand; 'tis only there
He apprehends: he has his feeling, yet.
See how he grasps it!

Corv. 'Las, good gentleman!

How pitiful the sight is!
Mos. Tut forget, sir.

The weeping of an heir should still be laughter Under a visor.

Corv. Why, am I his heir?

Mos. Sir, I am sworn, I may not shew the will Till he be dead; but here has been Corbaccio, Here has been Voltore, here were others too, I cannot number 'em, they were so many; All gaping here for legacies: but I, Taking the vantage of his naming you, Signior Corvino, Signior Corvino, took Paper, and pen, and ink, and there I asked him, Whom he would have his heir? Corvino.

Who

...19...

Should be executor? Corvino. And,
To any question he was silent to,
I still interpreted the nods he made,
Through weakness, for consent: and sent home th'
others,

Nothing bequeath'd them, but to cry and curse.
Corv. O, my dear Mosca! [They embrace.] Does he
not perceive us?
[man,
He knows no

Mos. No more than a blind harper.
No face of friend, nor name of any servant,
Who 'twas that fed him last, or gave him drink :
Not those he hath begotten, or brought up,
Can he remember.

Corv. Has he children?

Mos. Bastards,

Some dozen, or more, that he begot on beggars,
Gypsies, and Jews, and blackmoors, when he was

drunk.

Knew you not that, sir? 'tis the common fable.
The dwarf, the fool, the eunuch, are all his ;
He's the true father of his family,

In all, save me :-but he has given them nothing.
Corv. That's well, that's well! Art sure he does not

hear us?

Mos. Sure, sir! why, look you, credit your own sense. [Shouts in VOL.'s ear.

The pox approach, and add to your diseases,
If it would send you hence the sooner, sir,
For your incontinence, it hath deserv'd it'
Thoroughly, and thoroughly, and the plague to boot!—
You may come near, sir.-Would you would once close
Those filthy eyes of yours, that flow with slime,
Like two frog-pits; and those same hanging cheeks,
Cover'd with hide instead of skin-Nay, help, sir-
That look like frozen dish-clouts set on end!

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