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    Act 4, Scene II

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    Chapter 16
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    SCENE II. OLIVIA's house.

    Enter MARIA and Clown
    MARIA
    Nay, I prithee, put on this gown and this beard;
    make him believe thou art Sir Topas the curate: do
    it quickly; I'll call Sir Toby the whilst.

    Exit

    Clown
    Well, I'll put it on, and I will dissemble myself
    in't; and I would I were the first that ever
    dissembled in such a gown. I am not tall enough to
    become the function well, nor lean enough to be
    thought a good student; but to be said an honest man
    and a good housekeeper goes as fairly as to say a
    careful man and a great scholar. The competitors enter.

    Enter SIR TOBY BELCH and MARIA

    SIR TOBY BELCH
    Jove bless thee, master Parson.

    Clown
    Bonos dies, Sir Toby: for, as the old hermit of
    Prague, that never saw pen and ink, very wittily
    said to a niece of King Gorboduc, 'That that is is;'
    so I, being Master Parson, am Master Parson; for,
    what is 'that' but 'that,' and 'is' but 'is'?

    SIR TOBY BELCH
    To him, Sir Topas.

    Clown
    What, ho, I say! peace in this prison!

    SIR TOBY BELCH
    The knave counterfeits well; a good knave.

    MALVOLIO
    [Within] Who calls there?

    Clown
    Sir Topas the curate, who comes to visit Malvolio
    the lunatic.

    MALVOLIO
    Sir Topas, Sir Topas, good Sir Topas, go to my lady.

    Clown
    Out, hyperbolical fiend! how vexest thou this man!
    talkest thou nothing but of ladies?

    SIR TOBY BELCH
    Well said, Master Parson.

    MALVOLIO
    Sir Topas, never was man thus wronged: good Sir
    Topas, do not think I am mad: they have laid me
    here in hideous darkness.

    Clown
    Fie, thou dishonest Satan! I call thee by the most
    modest terms; for I am one of those gentle ones
    that will use the devil himself with courtesy:
    sayest thou that house is dark?

    MALVOLIO
    As hell, Sir Topas.

    Clown
    Why it hath bay windows transparent as barricadoes,
    and the clearstores toward the south north are as
    lustrous as ebony; and yet complainest thou of
    obstruction?

    MALVOLIO
    I am not mad, Sir Topas: I say to you, this house is dark.

    Clown
    Madman, thou errest: I say, there is no darkness
    but ignorance; in which thou art more puzzled than
    the Egyptians in their fog.

    MALVOLIO
    I say, this house is as dark as ignorance, though
    ignorance were as dark as hell; and I say, there
    was never man thus abused. I am no more mad than you
    are: make the trial of it in any constant question.

    Clown
    What is the opinion of Pythagoras concerning wild fowl?

    MALVOLIO
    That the soul of our grandam might haply inhabit a bird.

    Clown
    What thinkest thou of his opinion?

    MALVOLIO
    I think nobly of the soul, and no way approve his opinion.

    Clown
    Fare thee well. Remain thou still in darkness:
    thou shalt hold the opinion of Pythagoras ere I will
    allow of thy wits, and fear to kill a woodcock, lest
    thou dispossess the soul of thy grandam. Fare thee well.

    MALVOLIO
    Sir Topas, Sir Topas!

    SIR TOBY BELCH
    My most exquisite Sir Topas!

    Clown
    Nay, I am for all waters.

    MARIA
    Thou mightst have done this without thy beard and
    gown: he sees thee not.

    SIR TOBY BELCH
    To him in thine own voice, and bring me word how
    thou findest him: I would we were well rid of this
    knavery. If he may be conveniently delivered, I
    would he were, for I am now so far in offence with
    my niece that I cannot pursue with any safety this
    sport to the upshot. Come by and by to my chamber.

    Exeunt SIR TOBY BELCH and MARIA

    Clown
    [Singing]
    'Hey, Robin, jolly Robin,
    Tell me how thy lady does.'

    MALVOLIO
    Fool!

    Clown
    'My lady is unkind, perdy.'

    MALVOLIO
    Fool!

    Clown
    'Alas, why is she so?'

    MALVOLIO
    Fool, I say!

    Clown
    'She loves another'--Who calls, ha?

    MALVOLIO
    Good fool, as ever thou wilt deserve well at my
    hand, help me to a candle, and pen, ink and paper:
    as I am a gentleman, I will live to be thankful to
    thee for't.

    Clown
    Master Malvolio?

    MALVOLIO
    Ay, good fool.

    Clown
    Alas, sir, how fell you besides your five wits?

    MALVOLIO
    Fool, there was never a man so notoriously abused: I
    am as well in my wits, fool, as thou art.

    Clown
    But as well? then you are mad indeed, if you be no
    better in your wits than a fool.

    MALVOLIO
    They have here propertied me; keep me in darkness,
    send ministers to me, asses, and do all they can to
    face me out of my wits.

    Clown
    Advise you what you say; the minister is here.
    Malvolio, Malvolio, thy wits the heavens restore!
    endeavour thyself to sleep, and leave thy vain
    bibble babble.

    MALVOLIO
    Sir Topas!

    Clown
    Maintain no words with him, good fellow. Who, I,
    sir? not I, sir. God be wi' you, good Sir Topas.
    Merry, amen. I will, sir, I will.

    MALVOLIO
    Fool, fool, fool, I say!

    Clown
    Alas, sir, be patient. What say you sir? I am
    shent for speaking to you.

    MALVOLIO
    Good fool, help me to some light and some paper: I
    tell thee, I am as well in my wits as any man in Illyria.

    Clown
    Well-a-day that you were, sir

    MALVOLIO
    By this hand, I am. Good fool, some ink, paper and
    light; and convey what I will set down to my lady:
    it shall advantage thee more than ever the bearing
    of letter did.

    Clown
    I will help you to't. But tell me true, are you
    not mad indeed? or do you but counterfeit?

    MALVOLIO
    Believe me, I am not; I tell thee true.

    Clown
    Nay, I'll ne'er believe a madman till I see his
    brains. I will fetch you light and paper and ink.

    MALVOLIO
    Fool, I'll requite it in the highest degree: I
    prithee, be gone.

    Clown
    [Singing]
    I am gone, sir,
    And anon, sir,
    I'll be with you again,
    In a trice,
    Like to the old Vice,
    Your need to sustain;
    Who, with dagger of lath,
    In his rage and his wrath,
    Cries, ah, ha! to the devil:
    Like a mad lad,
    Pare thy nails, dad;
    Adieu, good man devil.

    Exit
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