Act IV - Act IV, Scene XVIII


VAL. Madam, you need not be very much afraid, for I fancy I begin to come to myself.

ANG. Ay, but if I don't fit you, I'll be hanged. [Aside.]

VAL. You see what disguises love makes us put on. Gods have been in counterfeited shapes for the same reason; and the divine part of me, my mind, has worn this mask of madness and this motley livery, only as the slave of love and menial creature of your beauty.

ANG. Mercy on me, how he talks! Poor Valentine!

VAL. Nay, faith, now let us understand one another, hypocrisy apart. The comedy draws toward an end, and let us think of leaving acting and be ourselves; and since you have loved me, you must own I have at length deserved you should confess it.

ANG. [Sighs.] I would I had loved you--for heav'n knows I pity you, and could I have foreseen the bad effects, I would have striven; but that's too late. [Sighs.]

VAL. What sad effects?--what's too late? My seeming madness has deceived my father, and procured me time to think of means to reconcile me to him, and preserve the right of my inheritance to his estate; which otherwise, by articles, I must this morning have resigned. And this I had informed you of to-day, but you were gone before I knew you had been here.

ANG. How! I thought your love of me had caused this transport in your soul; which, it seems, you only counterfeited, for mercenary ends and sordid interest.

VAL. Nay, now you do me wrong; for if any interest was considered it was yours, since I thought I wanted more than love to make me worthy of you.

ANG. Then you thought me mercenary. But how am I deluded by this interval of sense to reason with a madman?

VAL. Oh, 'tis barbarous to misunderstand me longer.