Digital Renaissance Editions

Author: George Chapman
Editor: Eleanor Lowe
Peer Reviewed

An Humorous Day's Mirth (Modern)

An Humorous Day’s Mirth
0.01[Scene 1]
1Enter the Count Labervele in his shirt and night-gown with two jewels in his hand.
Yet hath the morning sprinkled thr’out the clouds
5But half her tincture, and the soil of night
Sticks still upon the bosom of the air.
Yet sleep doth rest my love for nature’s debt,
And through her window and this dim twilight
Her maid, nor any waking I can see.
This is the holy green, my wife’s close walk,
— To which not any 10but herself alone
Hath any key, only that I have clapped
Her key in wax and made this counterfeit —
To the which I steal access
To work this rare and politic device.
Fair is my wife, and young and delicate,
Although too religious in the purist sort;
But pure religion being but 15mental stuff,
And sense, indeed, all for itself,
Is to be doubted; that, when an object comes
Fit to her humour, she will intercept
Religious letters sent unto her mind,
And yield unto the motion of her blood.
Here have I brought, then, two rich agates for her,
Graven with two posies of mine own 20devising,
For poets I’ll not trust, nor friends, nor any.
She longs to have a child, which yet, alas,
I cannot get, yet long as much as she,
And not to make her desperate, thus I write
In this fair jewel, though it simple be,
Yet ’tis mine own, that meaneth well enough:
Despair not of children,
Love 25with the longest;
When man is at the weakest,
God is at the strongest.
I hope ’tis plain and knowing. In this other, that I write:
God will reward her a thousandfold
That takes what age can, and not what age would.
I hope ’tis pretty and pathetical.
Well, even here
[Puts jewels down]
Lie both together till my love arise
And let her 30think you fall out of the skies.
I will to bed again.