William Shakespeare's Much Ado about Nothing in the complete original text.
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Much Ado about Nothing

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Act III. Scene V.

Scene V.—Another Room in LEONATO'S House.

Enter LEONATO with DOGBERRY and VERGES.

Leon. What would you with me, honest
neighbour?
Dogb. Marry, sir, I would have some confi-
dence with you, that decerns you nearly.
Leon. Brief, I pray you; for you see it is a
busy time with me.
Dogb. Marry, this it is, sir.
Verg. Yes, in truth it is, sir.
Leon. What is it, my good friends?
Dogb. Goodman Verges, sir, speaks a little off
the matter: an old man, sir, and his wits are not
so blunt, as, God help, I would desire they were;
but, in faith, honest as the skin between his
brows.
Verg. Yes, I thank God, I am as honest as
any man living, that is an old man and no
honester than I.
Dogb. Comparisons are odorous: palabras,
neighbour Verges.
Leon. Neighbours, you are tedious.
Dogb. It pleases your worship to say so, but
we are the poor duke's officers; but truly, for
mine own part, if I were as tedious as a king, I
could find in my heart to bestow it all of your
worship.
Leon. All thy tediousness on me! ha?
Dogb. Yea, an't were a thousand pound more
than 'tis; for I hear as good exclamation on
your worship, as of any man in the city, and
though I be but a poor man, I am glad to hear it.
Verg. And so am I.
Leon. I would fain know what you have to say.
Verg. Marry, sir, our watch to-night, except-
ing your worship's presence, ha' ta'en a couple
of as arrant knaves as any in Messina.
Dogb. A good old man, sir; he will be talking:
as they say, 'when the age is in, the wit is out.'
God help us! it is a world to see! Well said,
i' faith, neighbour Verges: well. God's a good
man; an two men ride of a horse, one must ride
behind. An honest soul, i' faith, sir; by my
troth he is, as ever broke bread: but God is to be
worshipped: all men are not alike; alas! good
neighbour.
Leon. Indeed, neighbour, he comes too short
of you.
Dogb. Gifts that God gives.
Leon. I must leave you.
Dogb. One word, sir: our watch, sir, hath
indeed comprehended two aspicious persons, and
we would have them this morning examined
before your worship.
Leon. Take their examination yourself, and
bring it me: I am now in great haste, as may
appear unto you.
Dogb. It shall be suffigance.
Leon. Drink some wine ere you go: fare you
well.
Mess. My lord, they stay for you to give your
daughter to her husband.
Leon. I'll wait upon them: I am ready.
[Exeunt LEONATO and Messenger.
Dogb. Go, good partner, go, get you to Francis
Seacoal; bid him bring his pen and inkhorn to
the gaol: we are now to examination these men.
Verg. And we must do it wisely.
Dogb. We will spare for no wit, I warrant
you; here's that shall drive some of them to a
non-come: only get the learned writer to set
down our excommunication, and meet me at the
gaol. [Exeunt.
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