THE COMEDY OF ERRORS
A monologue from Act II, Scene ii
by: William Shakespeare
|NOTE: The first recorded performance of The Comedy of Errors took place on December 28, 1594. It is now a public domain work and may be performed without royalties.
- ADRIANA: Ay, ay, Antipholus, look strange and frown.
- Some other mistress hath thy sweet aspects;
- I am not Adriana, nor thy wife.
- The time was once when thou unurged wouldst vow
- That never words were music to thine ear,
- That never object pleasing in thine eye,
- That never touch well welcome to thy hand,
- That never meat sweet-savored in thy taste,
- Unless I spake, or looked, or touched, or carved to thee.
- How comes it now, my husband, O, how comes it,
- That thou art then estrangèd from thyself?
- Thyself I call it, being strange to me!
- For know, my love, as easy mayst thou fall
- A drop of water in the breaking gulf,
- And take unmingled thence that drop again
- Without addition or diminishing,
- As take from me thyself and not me too.
- How dearly would it touch thee to the quick,
- Shouldst thou but hear I were licentious,
- And that this body, consecrate to thee,
- By ruffian lust should be contaminate!
- Wouldst thou not spit at me, and spurn at me,
- And hurl the name of husband in my face,
- And tear the stained skin off my harlot-brow,
- And from my false hand cut the wedding-ring,
- And break it with a deep-divorcing vow?
- I know thou canst, and therefore see thou do it.
- I am possessed with an adulterate blot;
- My blood is mingled with the crime of lust.
- For if we two be one, and thou play false,
- I do digest the poison of thy flesh,
- Being strumpeted by the contagion.
- Keep then fair league and truce with thy true bed;
- I live distained, thou undishonerèd.