The Whore of Babylon – Act Three, Scene two

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Enter PARIDEL and PALMIO.

PALMIO
You arrive on a blest shore.  The freight you bring
Is good.  It will be brought up of us all
With our dear bloods; be constant, do not warp
In this your zeal to Babylon.

PARIDEL
Grave Palmio,
To you I have unladen even my soul.
The wings from home that brought me had sick feathers;
Some you have pull’d off; my own country grass
Was to my feet sharp needles, stuck upright,
I tread on down-beds now.

PALMIO
But are your countrymen,
I mean those that in thought with us feast richly,
Fed with the course bread of affliction still?

PARIDEL
Still father Palmio, and to relieve them
I dare do what I told you.

PALMIO
Noble valour!

PARIDEL
So that I might but read on yonder scrolls
A warrant writ under the seal of heaven
To justify the act.

PALMIO
You have my hand
And shall have more.  Y’are reconcil’d, son?

PARIDEL
Yes.

PALMIO
Who did confess you?

PARIDEL
Father Anniball

PALMIO
But did the Nuntio Campeggio
Present your letters, and your vowed service
At Babylon.

PARIDEL
He did.  I sued our warrant
For passage safely thither, and from grave Como,
One of the capital columns of the state,
This I received.

PALMIO
He sends you here good welcome.
‘Tis strong.  Why went you not?

PARIDEL
I like it not.
There wants a convoy of some better words,
Which hourly I expect.  Upon a sea
So dangerous, so full of rocks, so narrow,
Albeit the venture holy and of honour,
I would not gladly sail without direction
Of noble pilots; home I would not come
Basely, but like a glorious voyager.

Enter RAGAZZONI.

PALMIO
Yes, you do well.  The Nuntio Ragazzoni!
Not know him?

PARIDEL
Certes no.

PALMIO
Come, you shall meet.
Monsignor, here’s a gentleman desires
To have your arms about him.

RAGAZZONI
Willingly.

PALMIO
He undertakes an action full of merit
Sans promise or reward, to cure all those
Through Fairy Land, that are diseas’d within,
And he will do’t, by letting one vein blood.

RAGAZZONI
Shoots he at highest?

PALMIO
Yes.

RAGAZZONI
Draw home, and give
Your arrows compass, that until they fall
Full on the head, none see them.  You do well.
My hands are yours.  Good speed.                                              [Exit RAGAZZONI.

Enter CAMPEGGIO.

PALMIO
Campeggio?
Now shall you hear some news.

CAMPEGGIO
I do assure you,
The mistress of us all hath on this paper
Breath’d you a blessing.  Your devotion
Is recommended highly, and to nourish
The flames new kindled in you, here’s more feul.

PARIDEL
Licence to go and come, in verbo imperatricis per omnes jurisdictiones Babilonicas absque impedimento.
Good.  Would it had come sooner.

CAMPEGGIO
Why?

PALMIO
‘Tis general,
Exceeding absolute and peremptory.

PARIDEL
I gives me my full sail, but by deep vows,
I am to travel lower, yet if season
Beat me not back, I will to Babylon.
What rubs so’er I meet in letters still,
I’ll kiss her sacred hand.

CAMPEGGIO
You change not bias.

PARIDEL
Oh, good sir, yonder is the goal I run for!

Enter RAGAZZONI at one door, a Gentleman at another.

RAGAZZONI
Lend me your speeches, both.

PALMIO
Yonder comes one
Of your own country.

PARIDEL
Oh, I know him, sir.

PALMIO
Walk in this college class but some few minutes,
I’ll send or bring you to a gentleman,
Next neighbour to your country; an Albanois.
The man I told you of.      [Exeunt  PALMIO, RAGAZZONI and CAMPEGGIO.

PARIDEL
Thanks, sir.

GENTLEMAN
Met happily.  I look’d for you.

PARIDEL
Dear countryman, the parley we late held
About the land that bred us, as how order
Was robb’d of ceremony, the rish robe of order,
How Truth was freckled, spotted, nay, made leprous,
How Justice—

GENTLEMAN
Come, no more.

PARIDEL
Even now, as then,
Your ward blows off from her, that at all weapons
Stikes at  your head, but I repent we drew not
That dialogue out to length, it was so sweet.

GENTLEMAN
At hours more opportune we shall.  But, countryman,
I heard of late the music of my soul,
And you the instrument are made that sounds it.
‘Tis given me, that yourself hath seal’d to heaven
A bond of your devotion to go forth
As champion of us all, in that good quarrel
That hath cost many lives.

PARIDEL
What need we use
Circumgyrations and such wheelings?  Sir,
Believe it, to recover our sick nurse
I’d kill the noblest foster-child she keeps.

GENTLEMAN
I know what bird you mean, and whom you hate,
But let him stand to fall.  No sir, the dear
Which we all  hope you’ll strike, is even the pride
And glory of the forest.  So, no not?

PARIDEL
My vows are flown up, and it must be done
So this may be but settled.

GENTLEMAN
Do you stagger?

PARIDEL
All winds are not yet laid.

GENTLEMAN
Have you looked out
For skilful coasters, that know all the sounds,
The flats, and quicksands, and can safely land you
Out of all touch of danger?

PARIDEL
I have met many,
And like a consort they hold several tunes.

GENTLEMAN
But make they music?

PARIDEL
Faith, a little jarring.
Sometimes a string or so; yet reverend Palmio,
And Anniball a Codreto keep the stream
In which I swim.  The Nuntio Ragazzoni
Plies me with wholesome physic; so the Nuntio.
My honoured friend Campeggio makes it clear
That it is lawful.

GENTLEMAN
Where at stick you then?

PARIDEL
At a small rock, a dispensation.

Enter PALMIO, CAMPEGGIO, and the ALBANOIS.

 GENTLEMAN
You cannot want for hands to help you forward.
In such a noble work your friends are near.
Dear countrymen, my sword, my state, and honour
Are for your use.  Go on, and let no heat
Thaw your strong resolution.  I shall see you
Before you take to sea.

PARIDEL
You shall.

GENTLEMAN
My duty.                                                                                [Exit.

PALMIO
This is the worthy gentleman to whom
I wish your love endear’d.  We have some conference.

[PALMIO’s party stand aloof.

PARIDEL
Born, sir, in Fairy Land?

ALBANOIS
No, marry sir,
An Albanois.

PARIDEL
Then for proximity
Of countries, let us interchange acquaintance.
I wish’d for your embracements, for your name
Is crown’d with titles of integrity,
Judgement and learning.  Let me upon their bases
Erect a pillar, by which Babylon
And all we may be strengthened.

ALBANOIS
I pray, be apert and plain.

PARIDEL
Then thus, sir:  by the way of argument
I would a question put, to taste your censure,
Because i do not soundly relish it.

ALBANOIS
Propone it, sir.  I’ll solve it as I can.

PARIDEL
Suppose that in the field there were an army,
Commixt of half your kinsfolk, friends, and lovers;
The other half sworn foes, all countrymen,
And that the leader of them were your father,
And that this leading father were so partial
That to preserve that half which loves you not,
Ye would lose that which loves you, and that to take
This captain’s life away, might bring this good
Of two sides to make one, and save much blood.
Would not you do it?

ALBANOIS
Umh!  Y’are full of ambage,
I answer as my spirits lead me, thus:
I would not do it.

PARIDEL
Why, sir?

ALBANOIS
Because I hold
Quod non omnino Licet.

PARIDEL
Come, come, I know, without all commenting,
This text you understand.  Weigh the utility
That goes with it:  the health is gives to thousands.
The sap it spreads through branches which now wither.
The restoration—

ALBANOIS
Sir, I see to the bottom
Of this deep well you dive in.  I do arm you
In this strong fight, just with the self same weapons
Which I would wear to guard me, and those are
My readings and belief settled by reading,
And this I find:
Quod non sunt facienda male, vt veniant bona.
For good, how great soever, must be done,
No ill how small soever.

PARIDEL
‘Tis no evil
To bar out so great ill, with so great good.

ALBANOIS
All good must not be done, but only that Quod benè et legitimè fiery potest.  For, sir, I know, that Deus magis amat aduerbia quam nomina.  Quia in actionibus magis ei Placent Benè et legitimè quàm bonum.  Ita vt nullum bonum Liceat facere, nisi bene et legitime fieri potest.  Quod in hoc Casu fieri non potest.

PARIDEL
Yet, with your favour, several learned men
Are clean from your opinion, and do hold
Quòd licet.

ALBANOIS
Those learned men perhaps may hold it fit
That to save many, they to one man’s danger,
Referring all to the depth inscrutable,
May allow of a particular; on no warrant
That they can show me written, but being stirr’d
With a humane compassion to men’s lives.
And less you revelation have divine
That bids you do, do not.  Thus you have mine.

OMNES
What so hard at it?

PARIDEL
We have done.  The time
Does pull me from your sweet society.

PALMIO
You will to Babylon.

PARIDEL
I cannot tell.
Whether I do or no, you shall have notice
How this great work goes forward.  Strengthen me
With all your comforts, and commend my service
To the most glorious throne.  If I get o’er,
There lands black vengeance on the Fairy shore.

OMNES
If prayers can do, it shall.               [Exeunt.

Proceed to the next scene

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