William Shakespeare's The Tempest, tells the tale of an exiled Duke and his daughter marooned on the sandy, idyllic, mysterious shores of an island paradise in the Mediterranean sea.
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The Tempest

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Act I. Scene II.

Scene II.—The Island: before the Cell of


Mira. If by your art, my dearest father, you
Put the wild waters in this roar, allay them.
The sky, it seems, would pour down stinking
But that the sea, mounting to th' welkin's
Dashes the fire out. O! I have suffer'd
With those that I saw suffer: a brave vessel,
Who had, no doubt, some noble creatures in her,
Dash'd all to pieces. O! the cry did knock
Against my very heart. Poor souls, they perish'd.
Had I been any god of power, I would
Have sunk the sea within the earth, or e'er
It should the good ship so have swallow'd and
The fraughting souls within her.
Pro. Be collected:
No more amazement. Tell your piteous heart
There's no harm done.
Mira. O, woe the day!
Pro. No harm.
I have done nothing but in care of thee,—
Of thee, my dear one! thee, my daughter!—who
Art ignorant of what thou art, nought knowing
Of whence I am: nor that I am more better
Than Prospero, master of a full poor cell,
And thy no greater father.
Mira. More to know
Did never meddle with my thoughts.
Pro. 'Tis time
I should inform thee further. Lend thy hand,
And pluck my magic garment from me.—So:
[Lays down his mantle.
Lie there, my art.—Wipe thou thine eyes; have
The direful spectacle of the wrack, which touch'd
The very virtue of compassion in thee,
I have with such provision in mine art
So safely order'd, that there is no soul—
No, not so much perdition as an hair,
Betid to any creature in the vessel
Which thou heard'st cry, which thou saw'st sink.
Sit down;
For thou must now know further.
Mira. You have often
Begun to tell me what I am, but stopp'd,
And left me to a bootless inquisition,
Concluding, 'Stay; not yet.'
Pro. The hour's now come,
The very minute bids thee ope thine ear;
Obey and be attentive. Canst thou remember
A time before we came unto this cell?
I do not think thou canst, for then thou wast
Out three years old.
Mira. Certainly, sir, I can.
Pro. By what? by any other house or person?
Of anything the image tell me, that
Hath kept with thy remembrance.
Mira. 'Tis for off;
And rather like a dream than an assurance
That my remembrance warrants. Had I not
Four or five women once that tended me?
Pro. Thou hadst, and more, Miranda. But
how is it
That this lives in thy mind? What seest thou else
In the dark backward and abysm of time?
If thou remember'st aught ere thou cam'st here,
How thou cam'st here, thou may'st.
Mira. But that I do not.
Pro. Twelve year since, Miranda, twelve year
Thy father was the Duke of Milan and
A prince of power.
Mira. Sir, are not you my father?
Pro. Thy mother was a piece of virtue,
She said thou wast my daughter; and thy father
Was Duke of Milan, and his only heir
A princess,—no worse issued.
Mira. O, the heavens!
What foul play had we that we came from
Or blessed was't we did?
Pro. Both, both, my girl:
By foul play, as thou say'st,were we heav'd thence;
But blessedly help hither.
Mira. O! my heart bleeds
To think o' the teen that I have turn'd you to,
Which is from my remembrance. Please you,
Pro. My brother and thy uncle, called
I pray thee, mark me,—that a brother should
Be so perfidious!—he whom next thyself,
Of all the world I lov'd, and to him put
The manage of my state; as at that time,
Through all the signiories it was the first,
And Prospero the prime duke; being so reputed
In dignity, and for the liberal arts,
Without a parallel: those being all my study,
The government I cast upon my brother,
And to my state grew stranger, being trans-
And rapt in secret studies. Thy false uncle—
Dost thou attend me?
Mira. Sir, most heedfully.
Pro. Being once perfected how to grant suits,
How to deny them, who t' advance, and who
To trash for over-topping; new created
The creatures that were mine, I say, or chang'd
Or else new formed 'em: having both the key
Of officer and office, set all hearts i' the state
To what tune pleas'd his ear; that now he was
The ivy which had hid my princely trunk,
And suck'd my verdure out on't.—Thou attend'st
Mira. O, good sir! I do.
Pro. I pray thee, mark me.
I, thus neglecting worldly ends, all dedicated
To closeness and the bettering of my mind
With that, which, but by being so retir'd,
O'erpriz'd all popular rate, in my false brother
Awak'd an evil nature; and my trust,
Like a good parent, did beget of him
A falsehood in its contrary as great
As my trust was; which had, indeed no limit,
A confidence sans bound. He being thus lorded,
Not only with what my revenue yielded,
But what my power might else exact,—like one,
Who having, into truth, by telling of it,
Made such a sinner of his memory,
To credit his own lie,—he did believe
He was indeed the duke; out o 'the substitution,
And executing th' outward face of royalty,
With all prerogative:—Hence his ambition grow-
Dost thou hear?
Mira, Your tale, sir, would cure deafness.
Pro. To have no screen between this part he
And him he play'd it for, he needs will be
Absolute Milan. Me, poor man,—my library
Was dukedom large enough: of temporal royal-
He thinks me now incapable; confederates,—
So dry he was for sway,—wi' the king of Naples
To give him annual tribute, do him homage;
Subject his coronet to his crown, and bend
The dukedom, yet unbow'd,—alas, poor Milan!—
To most ignoble stooping.
Mira. O the heavens!
Pro. Mark his condition and the event; then
tell me
If this might be a brother.
Mira. I should sin
To think but nobly of my grandmother:
Good wombs have borne bad sons.
Pro. Now the condition.
This King of Naples, being an enemy
To me inveterate, hearkens my brother's suit;
Which was, that he, in lieu o' the premises
Of homage and I know not how much tri-
Should presently extirpate me and mine
Out of the dukedom, and confer fair Milan,
With all the honours on my brother; whereon,
A treacherous army levied, one midnight
Fated to the purpose did Antonio open
The gates of Milan; and, i' the dead of darkness,
The ministers for the purpose hurried thence
Me and thy crying self.
Mira. Alack, for pity!
I, not rememb'ring how I cried out then,
Will cry it o'er again: it is a hint,
That wrings mine eyes to't.
Pro. Hear a little further,
And then I'll bring thee to the present busi-
Which now's upon us; without the which this
Were most impertinent.
Mira. Wherefore did they not
That hour destroy us?
Pro. Well demanded, wench:
My tale provokes that question. Dear, they
durst not,
So dear the love my people bore me, nor set
A mark so bloody on the business; but
With colours fairer painted their foul ends.
In few, they hurried us aboard a bark,
Bore us some leagues to sea; where they prepaid
A rotten carcass of a boat, not rigg'd,
Nor tackle, sail, nor mast; the very rats
Instinctively have quit it: there they hoist us,
To cry to the sea that roar'd to us; to sigh
To the winds whose pity, sighing back again,
Did us but loving wrong.
Mira. Alack! what trouble
Was I then to you!
Pro. O, a cherubin
Thou wast, that did preserve me! Thou didst
Infused with a fortitude from heaven,
When I have deck'd the sea with drops full salt,
Under my burden groan'd; which raised in
An undergoing stomach, to bear up
Against what should ensue.
Mira. How came we ashore?
Pro. By Providence divine.
Some food we had and some fresh water that
A noble Neapolitan, Gonzalo,
Out of his charity,—who being then appointed
Master of this design,—did give us, with
Rich garments, linens, stuffs, and necessaries,
Which since have steaded much; so, of his
Knowing I lov'd my books, he furnish'd me,
From mine own library with volumes that
I prize above my dukedom.
Mira. Would I might
But ever see that man!
Pro. Now I arise:—
[Resumes his mantle.
Sit still, and hear the last of our sea-sorrow.
Here in this island we arriv'd; and here
Have I, thy schoolmaster, made thee more
Than other princes can, that have more time
For vainer hours and tutors not so careful.
Mira. Heavens thank you for't! And now, I
pray you, sir,—
For still 'tis' beating in my mind,—your
For raising this sea-storm?
Pro. Know thus far forth.
By accident most strange, bountiful Fortune,
Now my dear lady, hath mine enemies
Brought to this shore; and by my prescience
I find my zenith doth depend upon
A most auspicious star, whose influence
If now I court not but omit, my fortunes
Will ever after droop. Here cease more ques-
Thou art inclined to sleep; 'tis a good dulness,
And give it way;—I know thou canst not
choose.— [MIRANDA sleeps.
Come away, servant, come! I'm ready now.
Approach, my Ariel; come!

Enter ARIEL.
Ari. All hail, great master! grave sir, hail!
I come
To answer thy best pleasure; be't to fly,
To swim, to dive into the fire, to ride
On the curl'd clouds: to thy strong bidding
Ariel and all his quality.
Pro. Hast thou, spirit,
Perform'd to point the tempest that I bade
Ari. To every article.
I boarded the king's ship; now on the beak,
Now in the waist, the deck, in every cabin,
I flam'd amazement: sometime I'd divide
And burn in many places; on the topmast,
The yards, and boresprit, would I flame dis-
Then meet, and join: Jove's lightnings, the
O' the dreadful thunder-claps, more momentary
And sight-outrunning were not; the fire and
Of sulphurous roaring the most mighty Nep-
Seem to besiege and make his bold waves
Yea, his dread trident shake.
Pro. My brave spirit! |
Who was so firm, so constant, that this coil
Would not infect his reason?
Ari. Not a soul
But felt a fever of the mad and play'd -
Some tricks of desperation. All but mariners,
Plunged in the foaming brine and quit the
Then all a-fire with me: the king's son, Fer-
With hair up-staring,—then like reeds, not hair,—
Was the first man that leap'd; cried, 'Hell is
And all the devils are here.'
Pro. Why, that's my spirit!
But was not this nigh shore?
Ari. Close by, my master.
Pro. But are they, Ariel, safe?
Ari. Not a hair perish'd;
On their sustaining garments not a blemish,
But fresher than before: and, as thou bad'st me,
In troops I have dispers'd them 'bout the
The king's son have I landed by himself;
Whom I left cooling of the air with sighs
In an odd angle of the isle and sitting,
His arms in this sad knot.
Pro. Of the king's ship
The mariners, say how thou hast dispos'd,
And all the rest o' the fleet.
Ari. Safely in harbour
Is the king's ship; in the deep nook, where once
Thou call'dst me up at midnight to fetch dew
From the still-vex'd Bermoothes; there she's hid:
The mariners all under hatches stow'd;
Who, with a charm join'd to their suffer'd
I have left asleep: and for the rest o' the
Which I dispers'd, they all have met again,
And are upon the Mediterranean flote,
Bound sadly home for Naples,
Supposing that they saw the king's ship
And his great person perish.
Pro. Ariel, thy charge
Exactly is perform'd: but there's more work:
What is the time o' th' day?
Ari. Past the mid season.
Pro. At least two glasses. The time 'twixt
six and now
Must by us both be spent most preciously.
Ari. Is there more toil? Since thou dost
give me pains,
Let me remember thee what thou hast promis'd,
Which is not yet perform'd me.
Pro. How now! moody?
What is't thou canst demand?
Ari. My liberty.
Pro. Before the time be out? no more!
Ari. I prithee
Remember, I have done thee worthy service;
Told thee no lies, made no mistakings, serv'd
Without or grudge or grumblings: thou didst
To bate me a full year.
Pro. Dost thou forget
From what a torment I did free thee?
Ari. No.
Pro. Thou dost; and think'st it much to
tread the ooze
Of the salt deep,
To run upon the sharp wind of the north,
To do me business in the veins o' th' earth
When it is bak'd with frost.
Ari. I do not, sir.
Pro. Thou liest, malignant thing! Hast thou
The foul witch Sycorax, who with age and envy
Was grown into a hoop? hast thou forgot her?
Ari. No, sir.
Pro. Thou hast. Where was she
born? speak; tell me.
Ari. Sir, in Argier.
Pro. O! was she so? I must,
Once in a month, recount what thou hast been,
Which thou forget'st. This damn'd witch, Sy-
For mischiefs manifold and sorceries terrible
To enter human hearing, from Argier,
Thou know'st, was banish'd: for one thing she
They would not take her life. Is not this true?
Ari. Ay, sir.
Pro. This blue-ey'd hag was hither brought
with child
And here was left by the sailors. Thou, my slave,
As thou report'st thyself, wast then her servant:
And, for thou wast a spirit too delicate
To act her earthy and abhorr'd commands,
Refusing her grand bests, she did confine thee,
By help of her more potent ministers,
And in her most unmitigable rage,
Into a cloven pine; within which rift
Imprison'd, thou didst painfully remain
A dozen years; within which space she died
And left thee there, where thou didst vent thy
As fast as mill-wheels strike. Then was this
Save for the son that she did litter here,
A freckled whelp hag-bom,—not honour'd with
A human shape.
Ari. Yes; Caliban her son.
Pro. Dull thing, I say so; he that Caliban,
Whom now I keep in service. Thou best know'st
What torment I did find thee in; thy groans
Did make wolves howl and penetrate the
Of ever-angry bears: it was a torment
To lay upon the damn'd, which Sycorax
Could not again undo; it was mine art,
When I arriv'd and heard thee, that made
The pine, and let thee out.
Ari. I thank thee, master.
Pro. If thou more murmur'st, I will rend an
And peg thee in his knotty entrails till
Thou hast howl'd away twelve winters.
Ari. Pardon, master;
I will be correspondent to command,
And do my spiriting gently.
Pro. Do so; and after two days
I will discharge thee.
Ari. That's my noble master!
What shall I do? say what? what shall I do?
Pro. Go make thyself like a nymph of the
sea: be subject
To no sight but thine and mine; invisible
To every eyeball else. Go, take this shape,
And hither come in't: go, hence with dili-
gence! [Exit ARIEL.
Awake, dear heart, awake! thou hast slept well;
Mira. [Waking.] The strangeness of your
story put
Heaviness in me.
Pro. Shake it off. Come on;
We'll visit Caliban my slave, who never
Yields us kind answer.
Mira. 'Tis a villain, sir,
I do not love to look on.
Pro. But, as 'tis,
We cannot miss him: he does make our fire,
Fetch in our wood; and serves in offices
That profit us.—What ho! slave! Caliban!
Thou earth, thou! speak.
Cal. [Within.] There's wood enough within.
Pro. Come forth, I say; there's other busi-
ness for thee:
Come, thou tortoise! when?

Re-enter ARIEL, like a water-nymph.
Fine apparition! My quaint Ariel,
Hark in thine ear.
Ari. My lord, it shall be done.
Pro. Thou poisonous slave, got by the devil
Upon thy wicked dam, come forth!

Cal. As wicked dew as e'er my mother
With raven's feather from unwholesome fen
Drop on you both! a south-west blow on ye,
And blister you all o'er!
Pro. For this, be sure, to-night thou shalt
have cramps,
Side-stitches that shall pen thy breath up;
Shall forth at vast of night, that they may work
All exercise on thee: thou shalt be pinch'd
As thick as honeycomb, each pinch more
Than bees that made them.
Cal. I must eat my dinner.
This island's mine, by Sycorax my mother,
Which thou tak'st from me. When thou earnest
Then strok'dst me, and mad'st much of me;
wouldst give me
Water with berries in't; and teach me how
To name the bigger light, and how the less,
That burn by day and night: and then I lov'd
And show'd thee all the qualities o' th' isle,
The fresh springs, brine-pits, barren place, and
Cursed be I that did so!—All the charms
Of Sycorax, toads, beetles, bats, light on you!
For I am all the subjects that you have,
Which first was mine own king; and here you
sty me
In this hard rock, whiles you do keep from me
The rest o' th' island.
Pro. Thou most lying slave,
Whom stripes may move, not kindness! I have
us'd thee,
Filth as thou art, with human care; and lodg'd
In mine own cell, till thou didst seek to violate
The honour of my child.
Cal. Oh ho! Oh ho!—would it had been done!
Thou didst prevent me; I had peopled else
This isle with Calibans.
Pro. Abhorred slave,
Which any print of goodness will not take,
Being capable of all ill! I pitied thee,
Took pains to make thee speak, taught thee each
One thing or other: when thou didst not, savage,
Know thine own meaning, but wouldst gabble
A thing most brutish, I endow'd thy purposes
With words that made them known: but thy
vile race,
Though thou didst learn, had that in't which
good natures
Could not abide to be with; therefore wast
Deservedly confin'd into this rock,
Who hadst deserv'd more than a prison.
Cal. You taught me language; and my profit
Is, I know how to curse: the red plague rid
For learning me your language!
Pro. Hag-seed, hence!
Fetch us in fuel; and be quick, thou'rt best,
To answer other business. Shrug'st thou, malice?
If thou neglect'st, or dost unwillingly
What I command, I'll rack thee with old cramps,
Fill all thy bones with aches; make thee roar,
That beasts shall tremble at thy din.
Cal. No, pray thee!—
[Aside.] I must obey: his art is of such
It would control my dam's god, Setebos,
And make a vassal of him.
Pro. So, slave; hence!

Re-enter ARIEL invisible, playing and singing;
FERDINAND following.
Come unto these yellow sands,
And then take hands;
Curtsied when you have, and kiss'd,—
The wild waves whist,—
Foot it featly here and there;
And, sweet sprites, the burden bear.
Hark, hark!
[Burden: Bow, wow, dispersedly.
The watch-dogs bark:
[Burden: Bow, wow, dispersedly.
Hark, hark! I hear
The strain of strutting Chanticleer
[Cry, Cock-a-diddle-dow.
Fer. Where should this music be? i' th' air,
or th' earth?
It sounds no more;—and sure, it waits upon
Some god o' th' island. Sitting on a bank,
Weeping again the king my father's wrack,
This music crept by me upon the waters,
Allaying both their fury, and my passion,
With its sweet air: thence I have follow'd it,—
Or it hath drawn me rather,—but 'tis gone.
No, it begins again.
ARIEL sings.
Full fathom five thy father lies;
Of his bones are coral made:
Those are pearls that were his eyes:
Nothing of him that doth fade,
But doth suffer a sea-change
Into something rich and strange.
Sea-nymphs hourly ring his knell:
[Burden: ding-dong.
Hark! now I hear them,—ding-dong, bell.
Fer. The ditty does remember my drown'd
This is no mortal business, nor no sound
That the earth owes:—I hear it now above me.
Pro. The fringed curtains of thine eye ad-
And say what thou seest yond.
Mira. What is't? a spirit?
Lord, how it looks about! Believe me, sir,
It carries a brave form:—but 'tis a spirit.
Pro. No, wench; it eats and sleeps, and hath
such senses
As we have, such; this gallant which thou see'st,
Was in the wrack; and, but he's something
With grief,—that beauty's canker,—thou
might'st call him
A goodly person: he hath lost his fellows
And strays about to find 'em
Mira. I might call him
A thing divine; for nothing natural
I ever saw so noble.
Pro. [Aside.] It goes on, I see,
As my soul prompts it.—Spirit, fine spirit! I'll
free thee
Within two days for this.
Fer. Most sure, the goddess
On whom these airs attend!—Vouchsafe, my
May know if you remain upon this island;
And that you will some good instruction give
How I may bear me here: my prime request,
Which I do last pronounce, is,—O you won-
If you be maid or no?
Mira. No wonder, sir;
But certainly a maid.
Fer. My language! heavens!—
I am the best of them that speak this speech,
Were I but where 'tis spoken.
Pro. How! the best?
What wert thou, if the King of Naples heard
Fer. A single thing, as I am now, that
To hear thee speak of Naples. He does hear me;
And, that he does, I weep: myself am Naples,
Who with mine eyes,—ne'er since at ebb,—beheld
The king, my father wrack'd.
Mira. Alack, for mercy!
Fer. Yes, faith, and all his lords; the Duke
of Milan,
And his brave son being twain.
Pro. [Aside.] The Duke of Milan,
And his more braver daughter could control
If now 'twere fit to do't.—At the first sight [Aside.]
They have changed eyes:—delicate Ariel,
I'll set thee free for this!—[To FER.] A word,
good sir;
I fear you have done yourself some wrong: a
Mira. [Aside.] Why speaks my father so
ungently? This
Is the third man that e'er I saw; the first
That e'er I sighed for: pity move my father
To be inclin'd my way!
Fer. [Aside.] O: if a virgin,
And your affection not gone forth, I'll make you
The Queen of Naples.
Pro. Soft, sir: one word more—
[Aside.] They are both in either's powers: but
this swift business
I must uneasy make, lest too light winning
Make the prize light.—[To FER.] One word more:
I charge thee
That thou attend me. Thou dost here usurp
The name thou ow'st not; and hast put thy-
Upon this island as a spy, to win it
From me, the lord on't.
Fer. No, as I am a man.
Mira. There's nothing ill can dwell in such a
If the ill spirit have so fair a house,
Good things will strive to dwell with 't.
Pro. [To FER.] Follow me.—
[To MIRA.] Speak not you for him; he's a
traitor.—[To FER.] Come;
I'll manacle thy neck and feet together:
Sea-water shalt thou drink; thy food shall
The fresh-brook muscles, wither'd roots and
Wherein the acorn cradled. Follow.
Fer. No;
I will resist such entertainment till
Mine enemy has more power.
[He draws, and is charmed from moving.
Mira. O dear father!
Make not too rash a trial of him, for
He's gentle, and not fearful.
Pro. What! I say,
My foot my tutor?—Put thy sword up, traitor;
Who mak'st a show, but dar'st not strike, thy
Is so possess'd with guilt: come from thy
For I can here disarm thee with this stick
And make thy weapon drop.
Mira. Beseech you, father!
Pro. Hence! hang not on my garments.
Mira. Sir, have pity:
I'll be his surety.
Pro. Silence! one word more
Shall make me chide thee, if not hate thee.
An advocate for an impostor? hush!
Thou think'st there is no more such shapes
as he,
Having seen but him and Caliban: foolish
To the most of men this is a Caliban
And they to him are angels.
Mira. My affections
Are then most humble; I have no ambition
To see a goodlier man.
Pro. [To FER.] Come on; obey;
Thy nerves are in their infancy again,
And have no vigour in them.
Fer. So they are:
My spirits, as in a dream, are all bound up.
My father's loss, the weakness which I feel,
The wrack of all my friends, or this man's
To whom I am subdued, are but light to me,
Might I but through my prison once a day
Behold this maid: all corners else o' th' earth
Let liberty make use of; space enough
Have I in such a prison.
Pro. [Aside.] It works.—[To FER.] Come on.—
Thou hast done well, fine Ariel!—[To FER.]
Follow me.—
[To ARIEL.] Hark, what thou else shalt do me.
Mira. Be of comfort;
My father's of a better nature, sir,
Than he appears by speech: this is unwonted,
Which now came from him.
Pro. Thou shalt be as free
As mountain winds; but then exactly do
All points of my command.
Ari. To the syllable.
Pro. [To FER.] Come, follow.—Speak not for
him. [Exeunt.
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