The Tempest

by William Shakespeare

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Act II

Scene I. Another part of the island.

Enter Alonso, Sebastian, Antonio, Gonzalo, Adrian, Francisco, and others.

Gon. Beseech you, sir, be merry; you have cause,

So have we all, of joy; for our escape

Is much beyond our loss. Our hint of woe

Is common; every day, some sailor’s wife,

5 The masters of some merchant, and the merchant,

Have just our theme of woe; but for the miracle,


I mean our preservation, few in millions

Can speak like us: then wisely, good sir, weigh

Our sorrow with our comfort.


Prithee, peace.

10Seb. He receives comfort like cold porridge.

Ant. The visitor will not give him o’er so.

Seb. Look, he’s winding up the watch of his wit; by and by it will strike.

Gon. Sir,—

15Seb. One: tell.

Gon. When every grief is entertain’d that’s offer’d,

Comes to the entertainer—

Seb. A dollar.

Gon. Dolour comes to him, indeed: you have spoken 20 truer than you purposed.

Seb. You have taken it wiselier than I meant you should.

Gon. Therefore, my lord,—

Ant. Fie, what a spendthrift is he of his tongue!

Alon. I prithee, spare.

II. 1. 25Gon. Well, I have done: but yet,—

Seb. He will be talking.

Ant. Which, of he or Adrian, for a good wager, first begins to crow?

Seb. The old cock.

30Ant. The cockerel.

Seb. Done. The wager?

Ant. A laughter.

Seb. A match!

Adr. Though this island seem to be desert,—

35Seb. Ha, ha, ha!—So, you’re paid.

Adr. Uninhabitable, and almost inaccessible,—

Seb. Yet,—

Adr. Yet,—


Ant. He could not miss’t.

40Adr. It must needs be of subtle, tender and delicate temperance.

Ant. Temperance was a delicate wench.

Seb. Ay, and a subtle; as he most learnedly delivered.

Adr. The air breathes upon us here most sweetly.

45Seb. As if it had lungs, and rotten ones.

Ant. Or as ’twere perfumed by a fen.

Gon. Here is every thing advantageous to life.

Ant. True; save means to live.

Seb. Of that there’s none, or little.

II. 1. 50Gon. How lush and lusty the grass looks! how green!

Ant. The ground, indeed, is tawny.

Seb. With an eye of green in’t.

Ant. He misses not much.

Seb. No; he doth but mistake the truth totally.

55Gon. But the rarity of it is,—which is indeed almost beyond credit,—

Seb. As many vouched rarities are.

Gon. That our garments, being, as they were, drenched in the sea, hold, notwithstanding, their freshness and glosses, 60 being rather new-dyed than stained with salt water.

Ant. If but one of his pockets could speak, would it not say he lies?

Seb. Ay, or very falsely pocket up his report.

Gon. Methinks our garments are now as fresh as when 65 we put them on first in Afric, at the marriage of the king’s fair daughter Claribel to the King of Tunis.

Seb. ’Twas a sweet marriage, and we prosper well in our return.

Adr. Tunis was never graced before with such a paragon 70 to their queen.

Gon. Not since widow Dido’s time.

Ant. Widow! a pox o’ that! How came that widow in? widow Dido!

Seb. What if he had said ‘widower Æneas’ too? Good II. 1. 75 Lord, how you take it!

Adr. ‘Widow Dido’ said you? you make me study of that: she was of Carthage, not of Tunis.


Gon. This Tunis, sir, was Carthage.

Adr. Carthage?

80Gon. I assure you, Carthage.

Seb. His word is more than the miraculous harp; he hath raised the wall, and houses too.

Ant. What impossible matter will he make easy next?

Seb. I think he will carry this island home in his 85 pocket, and give it his son for an apple.

Ant. And, sowing the kernels of it in the sea, bring forth more islands.

Gon. Ay.

Ant. Why, in good time.

90Gon. Sir, we were talking that our garments seem now as fresh as when we were at Tunis at the marriage of your daughter, who is now queen.

Ant. And the rarest that e’er came there.

Seb. Bate, I beseech you, widow Dido.

95Ant. O, widow Dido! ay, widow Dido.

Gon. Is not, sir, my doublet as fresh as the first day I wore it? I mean, in a sort.

Ant. That sort was well fished for.

Gon. When I wore it at your daughter’s marriage?

II. 1. 100Alon. You cram these words into mine ears against

The stomach of my sense. Would I had never

Married my daughter there! for, coming thence,

My son is lost, and, in my rate, she too.

Who is so far from Italy removed

105 I ne’er again shall see her. O thou mine heir

Of Naples and of Milan, what strange fish

Hath made his meal on thee?


Sir, he may live:

I saw him beat the surges under him,

And ride upon their backs; he trod the water.

110 Whose enmity he flung aside, and breasted

The surge most swoln that met him; his bold head


’Bove the contentious waves he kept, and oar’d

Himself with his good arms in lusty stroke

To the shore, that o’er his wave-worn basis bow’d,

115 As stooping to relieve him: I not doubt

He came alive to land.


No, no, he’s gone.

Seb. Sir, you may thank yourself for this great loss,

That would not bless our Europe with your daughter,

But rather lose her to an African;

120 Where she, at least, is banish’d from your eye,

Who hath cause to wet the grief on’t.


Prithee, peace.

Seb. You were kneel’d to, and importuned otherwise,

By all of us; and the fair soul herself

Weigh’d between loathness and obedience, at

II. 1. 125 Which end o’ the beam should bow. We have lost your son,

I fear, for ever: Milan and Naples have

More widows in them of this business’ making

Than we bring men to comfort them:

The fault’s your own.


So is the dear’st o’ the loss.

130Gon. My lord Sebastian,

The truth you speak doth lack some gentleness,

And time to speak it in: you rub the sore,

When you should bring the plaster.


Very well.

Ant. And most chirurgeonly.

135Gon. It is foul weather in us all, good sir,

When you are cloudy.


Foul weather?


Very foul.

Gon. Had I plantation of this isle, my lord,—

Ant. He’ld sow’t with nettle-seed.


Or docks, or mallows.


Gon. And were the king on’t, what would I do?

140Seb. ’Scape being drunk for want of wine.

Gon. I’ the commonwealth I would by contraries

Execute all things; for no kind of traffic

Would I admit; no name of magistrate;

Letters should not be known; riches, poverty,

145 And use of service, none; contract, succession,

Bourn, bound of land, tilth, vineyard, none;

No use of metal, corn, or wine, or oil;

No occupation; all men idle, all;

And women too, but innocent and pure;

II. 1. 150 No sovereignty;—


Yet he would be king on’t.

Ant. The latter end of his commonwealth forgets the beginning.

Gon. All things in common nature should produce

Without sweat or endeavour: treason, felony,

155 Sword, pike, knife, gun, or need of any engine,

Would I not have; but nature should bring forth,

Of its own kind, all foison, all abundance,

To feed my innocent people.

Seb. No marrying ’mong his subjects?

160Ant. None, man; all idle; whores and knaves.

Gon. I would with such perfection govern, sir,

To excel the golden age.


’Save his majesty!

Ant. Long live Gonzalo!


And,—do you mark me, sir?

Alon. Prithee, no more: thou dost talk nothing to me.

165Gon. I do well believe your highness; and did it to minister occasion to these gentlemen, who are of such sensible and nimble lungs that they always use to laugh at nothing.

Ant. ’Twas you we laughed at.

Gon. Who in this kind of merry fooling am nothing to 170 you: so you may continue, and laugh at nothing still.


Ant. What a blow was there given!

Seb. An it had not fallen flat-long.

Gon. You are gentlemen of brave mettle; you would lift the moon out of her sphere, if she would continue in it II. 1. 175 five weeks without changing.

Enter Ariel (invisible) playing solemn music.

Seb. We would so, and then go a bat-fowling.

Ant. Nay, good my lord, be not angry.

Gon. No, I warrant you; I will not adventure my discretion so weakly. Will you laugh me asleep, for I am very 180 heavy?

Ant. Go sleep, and hear us.

All sleep except Alon., Seb., and Ant.

Alon. What, all so soon asleep! I wish mine eyes

Would, with themselves, shut up my thoughts: I find

They are inclined to do so.


Please you, sir,

185 Do not omit the heavy offer of it:

It seldom visits sorrow; when it doth,

It is a comforter.


We two, my lord,

Will guard your person while you take your rest,

And watch your safety.


Thank you.—Wondrous heavy.

Alonso sleeps. Exit Ariel.

190Seb. What a strange drowsiness possesses them!

Ant. It is the quality o’ the climate.



Doth it not then our eyelids sink? I find not

Myself disposed to sleep.


Nor I; my spirits are nimble.


They fell together all, as by consent;

195 They dropp’d, as by a thunder-stroke. What might,

Worthy Sebastian?—O, what might?—No more:—

And yet methinks I see it in thy face,

What thou shouldst be: the occasion speaks thee; and

My strong imagination sees a crown

Dropping upon thy head.


II. 1. 200 What, art thou waking?

Ant. Do you not hear me speak?


I do; and surely

It is a sleepy language, and thou speak’st

Out of thy sleep. What is it thou didst say?

This is a strange repose, to be asleep

205 With eyes wide open; standing, speaking, moving,

And yet so fast asleep.


Noble Sebastian,

Thou let’st thy fortune sleep—die, rather; wink’st

Whiles thou art waking.


Thou dost snore distinctly;

There’s meaning in thy snores.

210Ant. I am more serious than my custom: you

Must be so too, if heed me; which to do

Trebles thee o’er.


Well, I am standing water.

Ant. I’ll teach you how to flow.


Do so: to ebb

Hereditary sloth instructs me.



215 If you but knew how you the purpose cherish

Whiles thus you mock it! how, in stripping it,

You more invest it! Ebbing men, indeed,

Most often do so near the bottom run

By their own fear or sloth.


Prithee, say on:

220 The setting of thine eye and cheek proclaim

A matter from thee; and a birth, indeed,


Which throes thee much to yield.


Thus, sir:

Although this lord of weak remembrance, this,

Who shall be of as little memory

II. 1. 225 When he is earth’d, hath here almost persuaded,—

For he’s a spirit of persuasion, only

Professes to persuade,—the king his son’s alive,

’Tis as impossible that he’s undrown’d

As he that sleeps here swims.


I have no hope

That he’s undrown’d.


230 O, out of that ‘no hope’

What great hope have you! no hope that way is

Another way so high a hope that even

Ambition cannot pierce a wink beyond,

But doubt discovery there. Will you grant with me

That Ferdinand is drown’d?


He’s gone.


235 Then, tell me,

Who’s the next heir of Naples?



Ant. She that is queen of Tunis; she that dwells

Ten leagues beyond man’s life; she that from Naples

Can have no note, unless the sun were post,—

240 The man i’ the moon’s too slow,—till new-born chins

Be rough and razorable; she that from whom

We all were sea-swallow’d, though some cast again,

And by that destiny, to perform an act

Whereof what’s past is prologue; what to come,

In yours and my discharge.


245 What stuff is this! How say you?


’Tis true, my brother’s daughter’s queen of Tunis;

So is she heir of Naples; ’twixt which regions

There is some space.


A space whose every cubit

Seems to cry out, “How shall that Claribel

II. 1. 250 Measure us back to Naples? Keep in Tunis,

And let Sebastian wake.” Say, this were death

That now hath seized them; why, they were no worse

Than now they are. There be that can rule Naples

As well as he that sleeps; lords that can prate

255 As amply and unnecessarily

As this Gonzalo; I myself could make

A chough of as deep chat. O, that you bore

The mind that I do! what a sleep were this

For your advancement! Do you understand me?

Seb. Methinks I do.


260 And how does your content

Tender your own good fortune?


I remember

You did supplant your brother Prospero.



And look how well my garments sit upon me;

Much feater than before: my brother’s servants

265 Were then my fellows; now they are my men.

Seb. But for your conscience.

Ant. Ay, sir; where lies that? if ’twere a kibe,

’Twould put me to my slipper: but I feel not

This deity in my bosom: twenty consciences,

270 That stand ’twixt me and Milan, candied be they,

And melt, ere they molest! Here lies your brother,

No better than the earth he lies upon,

If he were that which now he’s like, that’s dead;


Whom I, with this obedient steel, three inches of it,

II. 1. 275 Can lay to bed for ever; whiles you, doing thus,

To the perpetual wink for aye might put

This ancient morsel, this Sir Prudence, who

Should not upbraid our course. For all the rest,

They’ll take suggestion as a cat laps milk;

280 They’ll tell the clock to any business that

We say befits the hour.


Thy case, dear friend,

Shall be my precedent; as thou got’st Milan,

I’ll come by Naples. Draw thy sword: one stroke

Shall free thee from the tribute which thou payest;

And I the king shall love thee.


285 Draw together;

And when I rear my hand, do you the like,

To fall it on Gonzalo.


O, but one word. They talk apart.

Re-enter Ariel invisible.

Ari. My master through his art foresees the danger

That you, his friend, are in; and sends me forth,—

290For else his project dies,—to keep them living.

Sings in Gonzalo’s ear.

While you here do snoring lie,

Open-eyed conspiracy

His time doth take.

If of life you keep a care,

295 Shake off slumber, and beware:

Awake, awake!

Ant. Then let us both be sudden.


Now, good angels

Preserve the king! They wake.


Alon. Why, how now? ho, awake!—Why are you drawn?

Wherefore this ghastly looking?


II. 1. 300 What’s the matter?

Seb. Whiles we stood here securing your repose,

Even now, we heard a hollow burst of bellowing

Like bulls, or rather lions: did’t not wake you?

It struck mine ear most terribly.


I heard nothing.

305Ant. O, ’twas a din to fright a monster’s ear,

To make an earthquake! sure, it was the roar

Of a whole herd of lions.


Heard you this, Gonzalo?

Gon. Upon mine honour, sir, I heard a humming,

And that a strange one too, which did awake me:

310 I shaked you, sir, and cried: as mine eyes open’d,

I saw their weapons drawn:—there was a noise,

That’s verily. ’Tis best we stand upon our guard,

Or that we quit this place: let’s draw our weapons.

Alon. Lead off this ground; and let’s make further search

For my poor son.


315 Heavens keep him from these beasts!

For he is, sure, i’ th’ island.


Lead away.

Ari. Prospero my lord shall know what I have done:

So, king, go safely on to seek thy son. Exeunt.

II. 2 Scene II. Another part of the island.

Enter Caliban with a burden of wood. A noise of thunder heard.

Cal. All the infections that the sun sucks up

From bogs, fens, flats, on Prosper fall, and make him

By inch-meal a disease! His spirits hear me,

And yet I needs must curse. But they’ll nor pinch,

5 Fright me with urchin-shows, pitch me i’ the mire,

Nor lead me, like a firebrand, in the dark


Out of my way, unless he bid ’em: but

For every trifle are they set upon me;

Sometime like apes, that mow and chatter at me,

10 And after bite me; then like hedgehogs, which

Lie tumbling in my barefoot way, and mount

Their pricks at my footfall; sometime am I

All wound with adders, who with cloven tongues

Do hiss me into madness.

Enter Trinculo.

Lo, now, lo!

15 Here comes a spirit of his, and to torment me

For bringing wood in slowly. I’ll fall flat;

Perchance he will not mind me.

Trin. Here’s neither bush nor shrub, to bear off any weather at all, and another storm brewing; I hear it sing i’ 20 the wind: yond same black cloud, yond huge one, looks like a foul bombard that would shed his liquor. If it should thunder as it did before, I know not where to hide my head: yond same cloud cannot choose but fall by pailfuls. What have we here? a man or a fish? dead or alive? A fish: he II. 2. 25 smells like a fish; a very ancient and fish-like smell; a kind of not of the newest Poor-John. A strange fish! Were I in England now, as once I was, and had but this fish painted, not a holiday fool there but would give a piece of silver: there would this monster make a man; any strange 30 beast there makes a man: when they will not give a doit to relieve a lame beggar, they will lay out ten to see a dead Indian. Legged like a man! and his fins like arms! Warm o’ my troth! I do now let loose my opinion; hold it no longer: this is no fish, but an islander, that hath lately suffered 35 by a thunderbolt. [Thunder.] Alas, the storm is come again! my best way is to creep under his gaberdine; there is no other shelter hereabout: misery acquaints a man with strange bed-fellows. I will here shroud till the dregs of the storm be past.


Enter Stephano, singing: a bottle in his hand.

40Ste. I shall no more to sea, to sea,

Here shall I die a-shore,—

This is a very scurvy tune to sing at a man’s funeral: well, here’s my comfort. Drinks.

[Sings. The master, the swabber, the boatswain, and I,

45 The gunner, and his mate,

Loved Mall, Meg, and Marian, and Margery,

But none of us cared for Kate;

For she had a tongue with a tang,

Would cry to a sailor, Go hang!

II. 2. 50 She loved not the savour of tar nor of pitch;

Yet a tailor might scratch her where’er she did itch.

Then, to sea, boys, and let her go hang!

This is a scurvy tune too: but here’s my comfort. Drinks.

Cal. Do not torment me:—O!

55Ste. What’s the matter? Have we devils here? Do you put tricks upon ’s with savages and men of Ind, ha? I have not scaped drowning, to be afeard now of your four legs; for it hath been said, As proper a man as ever went on four legs cannot make him give ground; and it shall be 60 said so again, while Stephano breathes at’s nostrils.

Cal. The spirit torments me:—O!

Ste. This is some monster of the isle with four legs, who hath got, as I take it, an ague. Where the devil should he learn our language? I will give him some relief, if it be 65 but for that. If I can recover him, and keep him tame, and get to Naples with him, he’s a present for any emperor that ever trod on neat’s-leather.

Cal. Do not torment me, prithee; I’ll bring my wood home faster.

70Ste. He’s in his fit now, and does not talk after the wisest. He shall taste of my bottle: if he have never drunk wine afore, it will go near to remove his fit. If I can recover him, and keep him tame, I will not take too much for him; he shall pay for him that hath him, and that soundly.


II. 2. 75Cal. Thou dost me yet but little hurt; thou wilt anon, I know it by thy trembling: now Prosper works upon thee.

Ste. Come on your ways; open your mouth; here is that which will give language to you, cat: open your mouth; this will shake your shaking, I can tell you, and that soundly: 80 you cannot tell who’s your friend: open your chaps again.

Trin. I should know that voice: it should be—but he is drowned; and these are devils:—O defend me!

Ste. Four legs and two voices,—a most delicate monster! His forward voice, now, is to speak well of his friend; 85 his backward voice is to utter foul speeches and to detract. If all the wine in my bottle will recover him, I will help his ague. Come:—Amen! I will pour some in thy other mouth.

Trin. Stephano!

90Ste. Doth thy other mouth call me? Mercy, mercy! This is a devil, and no monster: I will leave him; I have no long spoon.

Trin. Stephano! If thou beest Stephano, touch me, and speak to me; for I am Trinculo,—be not afeard,—thy 95 good friend Trinculo.

Ste. If thou beest Trinculo, come forth: I’ll pull thee by the lesser legs: if any be Trinculo’s legs, these are they. Thou art very Trinculo indeed! How earnest thou to be the siege of this moon-calf? can he vent Trinculos?

II. 2. 100Trin. I took him to be killed with a thunder-stroke. But art thou not drowned, Stephano? I hope, now, thou art not drowned. Is the storm overblown? I hid me under the dead moon-calf’s gaberdine for fear of the storm. And art thou living, Stephano? O Stephano, two Neapolitans 105 scaped!

Ste. Prithee, do not turn me about; my stomach is not constant.

Cal. [aside] These be fine things, an if they be not sprites.

That’s a brave god, and bears celestial liquor:

110 I will kneel to him.


Ste. How didst thou ’scape? How camest thou hither? swear, by this bottle, how thou camest hither. I escaped upon a butt of sack, which the sailors heaved o’erboard, by this bottle! which I made of the bark of a tree with mine 115 own hands, since I was cast ashore.

Cal. I’ll swear, upon that bottle, to be thy true subject; for the liquor is not earthly.

Ste. Here; swear, then, how thou escapedst.

Trin. Swum ashore, man, like a duck: I can swim 120 like a duck, I’ll be sworn.

Ste. Here, kiss the book. Though thou canst swim like a duck, thou art made like a goose.

Trin. O Stephano, hast any more of this?

Ste. The whole butt, man: my cellar is in a rock by II. 2. 125 the sea-side, where my wine is hid. How now, moon-calf! how does thine ague?

Cal. Hast thou not dropp’d from heaven?

Ste. Out o’ the moon, I do assure thee: I was the man i’ the moon when time was.

130Cal. I have seen thee in her, and I do adore thee: My mistress show’d me thee, and thy dog, and thy bush.

Ste. Come, swear to that; kiss the book: I will furnish it anon with new contents: swear.

Trin. By this good light, this is a very shallow monster! 135 I afeard of him! A very weak monster! The man i’ the moon! A most poor credulous monster! Well drawn, monster, in good sooth!

Cal. I’ll show thee every fertile inch o’ th’ island;

And I will kiss thy foot: I prithee, be my god.

140Trin. By this light, a most perfidious and drunken monster! when’s god’s asleep, he’ll rob his bottle.

Cal. I’ll kiss thy foot; I’ll swear myself thy subject.

Ste. Come on, then; down, and swear.


Trin. I shall laugh myself to death at this puppy-headed monster. A most scurvy monster! I could find in 145 my heart to beat him,—

Ste. Come, kiss.

Trin. But that the poor monster’s in drink: an abominable monster!

II. 2. 150Cal. I’ll show thee the best springs; I’ll pluck thee berries;

I’ll fish for thee, and get thee wood enough.

A plague upon the tyrant that I serve!

I’ll bear him no more sticks, but follow thee,

Thou wondrous man.

Trin. A most ridiculous monster, to make a wonder 155 of a poor drunkard!

Cal. I prithee, let me bring thee where crabs grow;

And I with my long nails will dig thee pig-nuts;

Show thee a jay’s nest, and instruct thee how

160 To snare the nimble marmoset; I’ll bring thee

To clustering filberts, and sometimes I’ll get thee

Young scamels from the rock. Wilt thou go with me?

Ste. I prithee now, lead the way, without any more talking. Trinculo, the king and all our company else being drowned, 165 we will inherit here: here; bear my bottle: fellow Trinculo, we’ll fill him by and by again.

Cal. sings drunkenly.] Farewell, master; farewell, farewell!

Trin. A howling monster; a drunken monster!

Cal. No more dams I’ll make for fish;

170 Nor fetch in firing

At requiring;

Nor scrape trencher, nor wash dish:

’Ban, ’Ban, Cacaliban

Has a new master:—get a new man.

II. 2. 175 Freedom, hey-day! hey-day, freedom! freedom, hey-day, freedom!

Ste. O brave monster! Lead the way.



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