Front Page Titles (by Subject) SCENE IV. - The Works of Christopher Marlowe, vol. 2
SCENE IV. - Christopher Marlowe, The Works of Christopher Marlowe, vol. 2 
The Works of Christopher Marlowe, ed. A.H. Bullen (London: John C. Nimmo, 1885). Vol. 2.
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EnterBarabas, reading a letter.
- What, Abigail become a nun again!
- False and unkind; what, hast thou lost thy father?
- And all unknown, and unconstrained of me,
- Art thou again got to the nunnery?
- Now here she writes, and wills me to repent.
- Repentance! Spurca! what pretendeth this?
- I fear she knows—'tis so—of my device
- In Don Mathias' and Lodovico's deaths:
- If so, 'tis time that it be seen into:
- For she that varies from me in belief
- Gives great presumption that she loves me not;
- Or loving, doth dislike of something done.—
- But who comes here?
- O Ithamore, come near;
- Come near, my love; come near, thy master's life,
- My trusty servant, nay, my second self:
- For I have now no hope but even in thee,
- And on that hope my happiness is built.
- When saw'st thou Abigail?
- A friar! false villain, he hath done the deed.
- Why, made mine Abigail a nun.
- That's no lie, for she sent me for him.
- O unhappy day!
- False, credulous, inconstant Abigail!
- But let 'em go: and, Ithamore, from hence
- Ne'er shall she grieve me more with her disgrace;
- Ne'er shall she live to inherit aught of mine,
- Be blest of me, nor come within my gates,
- But perish underneath my bitter curse,
- Like Cain by Adam for his brother's death.
- Ithamore, entreat not for her, I am moved,
- And she is hateful to my soul and me:
- And 'less thou yield to this that I entreat,
- I cannot think but that thou hat'st my life.
- Who, I, master? Why, I'll run to some rock,
- And throw myself headlong into the sea;
- O trusty Ithamore, no servant, but my friend:
- I here adopt thee for mine only heir,
- All that I have is thine when I am dead,
- And whilst I live use half; spend as myself;
- Here take my keys, I'll give 'em thee anon:
- Go buy thee garments: but thou shall not want:
- Only know this, that thus thou art to do:
- But first go fetch me in the pot of rice
- I hold my head my master's hungry. I go, sir.
- Thus every villain ambles after wealth,
- Although he ne'er be richer than in hope:
- But, husht!
- EnterIthamorewith the pot.
- Well said, Ithamore; what, hast thou brought
- The ladle with thee too?
- Yes, sir, the proverb says he that eats with the devil had need of a long spoon. I have brought you a ladle.
- Very well, Ithamore, then now be secret;
- And for thy sake, whom I so dearly love,
- Now shalt thou see the death of Abigail,
- That thou may'st freely live to be my heir.
- Why, master, will you poison her with a mess of rice porridge? that will preserve life, make her round and plump, and batten more than you are aware.
- Ay, but, Ithamore, seest thou this?
- It is a precious powder that I bought
- Of an Italian, in Ancona, once,
- Whose operation is to bind, infect,
- And poison deeply, yet not appear
- In forty hours after it is ta'en.
- Thus, Ithamore.
- This even they use in Malta here,—'tis called
- Saint Jacques' Even,—and then I say they use
- To send their alms unto the nunneries:
- Among the rest bear this, and set it there;
- There's a dark entry where they take it in,
- Where they must neither see the messenger,
- Nor make inquiry who hath sent it them.
- Belike there is some ceremony in't.
- There, Ithamore, must thou go place this pot!
- Stay, let me spice it first.
- Pray do, and let me help you, master. Pray let me taste first.
- Prythee do: what say'st thou now?
- Troth, master, I'm loth such a pot of pottage should be spoiled.
- Peace, Ithamore, 'tis better so than spared.
- Assure thyself thou shalt have broth by the eye,
- My purse, my coffer, and myself is thine.
- Stay, first let me stir it, Ithamore.
- As fatal be it to her as the draught
- Of which great Alexander drunk and died:
- And with her let it work like Borgia's wine,
- Whereof his sire, the Pope, was poisonèd.
- In few, the blood of Hydra, Lerna's bane:
- The juice of hebon, and Cocytus' breath,
- And all the poisons of the Stygian pool
- Break from the fiery kingdom; and in this
- Vomit your venom and invenom her
- That like a fiend hath left her father thus.
- “Upon my secure hour thy uncle stole
- With juice of cursed hebenon in a vial.”
- What a blessing has he given't! was ever pot of rice porridge so sauced! What shall I do with it?
- O, my sweet Ithamore, go set it down,
- And come again so soon as thou hast done,
- For I have other business for thee.
- Here's a drench to poison a whole stable of Flanders mares: I'll carry 't to the nuns with a powder.
- And the horse pestilence to boot; away!
- I am gone.
- Pay me my wages, for my work is done.
- I'll pay thee with a vengeance, Ithamore.