188.1[Scene 3]
Enter [Sueno], King of Denmark, with some attendants; Blanche, his 190daughter; Mariana; Marquis Lübeck; [and] William, disguised [as Sir Robert of Windsor].
Sueno
Lord Marquis Lübeck, welcome home.
[To William] Welcome, brave knight, unto the Denmark king.
For William’s sake, the noble Norman duke,
195So famous for his fortunes and success
That graceth him with name of ‘Conqueror’,
Right double welcome must thou be to us.
William
And to my lord the king shall I recount
Your grace’s courteous entertainment
200That for his sake vouchsafe to honour me,
A simple knight attendant on his grace.
Sueno
But say, Sir Knight, what may I call your name?
William
Robert Windsor, and like your majesty.
Sueno
I tell thee, Robert, I so admire the man
205As that I count it heinous guilt in him
That honours not Duke William with his heart.
Blanche, bid this stranger welcome, good my girl.
Blanche
Sir,
Should I neglect your highness’ charge herein
It might be thought of base discourtesy.
210Welcome, Sir Knight, to Denmark heartily.
William
Thanks, gentle lady. [Aside to Lübeck] Lord Marquis, what is she?
Lübeck
That same is Blanche, daughter to the king,
The substance of the shadow that you saw.
William
[Aside] May this be she for whom I crossed the seas?
215I am ashamed to think I was so fond
In whom there’s nothing that contends my mind:
Ill head, worse featured, uncomely, nothing courtly,
Swart and ill-favoured, a collier’s sanguine skin.
I never saw a harder-favoured slut.
220Love her? For what? I can no whit abide her.
Sueno
Mariana, I have this day received letters
From Swethia that lets me understand
Your ransom is collecting there with speed,
And shortly shall be hither sent to us.
Mariana
225Not that I find occasion of mislike
My entertainment in your grace’s court,
But that I long to see my native home.
Sueno
And reason have you, madam, for the same.
Lord Marquis, I commit unto your charge
230The entertainment of Sir Robert here.
Let him remain with you within the court,
To spend the time in solace and disport.
William
I thank your highness, whose bounden I remain.
Exit [Sueno], King of Denmark [and attendants].
235Blanche speaketh this secretly at one end of the stage.
[Blanche]
Unhappy Blanche, what strange effects are these
That works within my thoughts confusedly,
That still methinks affection draws me on
To take, to like, nay more, to love this knight?
William
240[Aside] A modest countenance, no heavy, sullen look.
Not very fair, but richly decked with favour.
A sweet face, an exceeding dainty hand.
A body, were it framed of wax
By all the cunning artists of the world,
245It could not better be proportionèd.
Lübeck
How now, Sir Robert? In a study, man?
Here is no time for contemplation.
William
My lord, there is a certain odd conceit
Which on the sudden greatly troubles me.
Lübeck
250How like you Blanche? I partly do perceive
The little boy hath played the wag with you.
William
The more I look, the more I love to look.
Who says that Mariana is not fair?
I’ll gauge my gauntlet ’gainst the envious man
255That dares avow there liveth her compare.
Lübeck
Sir Robert, you mistake your counterfeit.
[Indicating Blanche] This is the lady which you came to see.
William
Yea, my lord, she is counterfeit indeed,
[Indicating Mariana] For there is the substance that best contents me.
Lübeck
260That is my love. Sir Robert, you do wrong me.
William
The better for you, sir, she is your love.
As for the wrong, I see not how it grows.
Lübeck
In seeking that which is another’s right.
William
As who should say your love were privileged,
265That none might look upon her but yourself?
Lübeck
These jars become not our familiarity,
Nor will I stand on terms to move your patience.
William
Why, my lord, am not I of flesh and blood
As well as you?
Then give me leave to love as well as you.
Lübeck
270To love, Sir Robert? But whom? Not she I love?
Nor stands it with the honour of my state
To brook corrivals with me in my love.
William
So, sir, we are thorough for that lady.
Ladies, farewell. Lord Marquis, will you go?
275[Aside] I will find a time to speak with her, I trow.
Lübeck
With all my heart. Come ladies, will you walk?
Exeunt.