Speeches (Lines) for Old Shepherd in "The Winter's Tale"

Total: 42
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# Act / Scene Speech text
1 III / 3
  • I would there were no age between sixteen and
    three-and-twenty, or that yout...
  • I would there were no age between sixteen and
    three-and-twenty, or that youth would sleep out the
    rest; for there is nothing in the between but
    getting wenches with child, wronging the ancientry,
    stealing, fighting--Hark you now! Would any but
    these boiled brains of nineteen and two-and-twenty
    hunt this weather? They have scared away two of my
    best sheep, which I fear the wolf will sooner find
    than the master: if any where I have them, 'tis by
    the seaside, browsing of ivy. Good luck, an't be thy
    will what have we here! Mercy on 's, a barne a very
    pretty barne! A boy or a child, I wonder? A
    pretty one; a very pretty one: sure, some 'scape:
    though I am not bookish, yet I can read
    waiting-gentlewoman in the 'scape. This has been
    some stair-work, some trunk-work, some
    behind-door-work: they were warmer that got this
    than the poor thing is here. I'll take it up for
    pity: yet I'll tarry till my son come; he hallooed
    but even now. Whoa, ho, hoa!
  • Antigonus. Come, poor babe:
    I have heard, but not believed,
    the spirits o' the dead
    May walk again: if such thing be, thy mother
    Appear'd to me last night, for ne'er was dream
    So like a waking. To me comes a creature,
    Sometimes her head on one side, some another;
    I never saw a vessel of like sorrow,
    So fill'd and so becoming: in pure white robes,
    Like very sanctity, she did approach
    My cabin where I lay; thrice bow'd before me,
    And gasping to begin some speech, her eyes
    Became two spouts: the fury spent, anon
    Did this break-from her: 'Good Antigonus,
    Since fate, against thy better disposition,
    Hath made thy person for the thrower-out
    Of my poor babe, according to thine oath,
    Places remote enough are in Bohemia,
    There weep and leave it crying; and, for the babe
    Is counted lost for ever, Perdita,
    I prithee, call't. For this ungentle business
    Put on thee by my lord, thou ne'er shalt see
    Thy wife Paulina more.' And so, with shrieks
    She melted into air. Affrighted much,
    I did in time collect myself and thought
    This was so and no slumber. Dreams are toys:
    Yet for this once, yea, superstitiously,
    I will be squared by this. I do believe
    Hermione hath suffer'd death, and that
    Apollo would, this being indeed the issue
    Of King Polixenes, it should here be laid,
    Either for life or death, upon the earth
    Of its right father. Blossom, speed thee well!
    There lie, and there thy character: there these;
    Which may, if fortune please, both breed thee, pretty,
    And still rest thine. The storm begins; poor wretch,
    That for thy mother's fault art thus exposed
    To loss and what may follow! Weep I cannot,
    But my heart bleeds; and most accursed am I
    To be by oath enjoin'd to this. Farewell!
    The day frowns more and more: thou'rt like to have
    A lullaby too rough: I never saw
    The heavens so dim by day. A savage clamour!
    Well may I get aboard! This is the chase:
    I am gone for ever.

    Old Shepherd. I would there were no age between sixteen and
    three-and-twenty, or that youth would sleep out the
    rest; for there is nothing in the between but
    getting wenches with child, wronging the ancientry,
    stealing, fighting--Hark you now! Would any but
    these boiled brains of nineteen and two-and-twenty
    hunt this weather? They have scared away two of my
    best sheep, which I fear the wolf will sooner find
    than the master: if any where I have them, 'tis by
    the seaside, browsing of ivy. Good luck, an't be thy
    will what have we here! Mercy on 's, a barne a very
    pretty barne! A boy or a child, I wonder? A
    pretty one; a very pretty one: sure, some 'scape:
    though I am not bookish, yet I can read
    waiting-gentlewoman in the 'scape. This has been
    some stair-work, some trunk-work, some
    behind-door-work: they were warmer that got this
    than the poor thing is here. I'll take it up for
    pity: yet I'll tarry till my son come; he hallooed
    but even now. Whoa, ho, hoa!

2 III / 3
  • What, art so near? If thou'lt see a thing to talk
    on when thou art dead and...
  • What, art so near? If thou'lt see a thing to talk
    on when thou art dead and rotten, come hither. What
    ailest thou, man?
  • Clown. Hilloa, loa!

    Old Shepherd. What, art so near? If thou'lt see a thing to talk
    on when thou art dead and rotten, come hither. What
    ailest thou, man?

3 III / 3
  • Why, boy, how is it?
  • Why, boy, how is it?
  • Clown. I have seen two such sights, by sea and by land!
    but I am not to say it is a sea, for it is now the
    sky: betwixt the firmament and it you cannot thrust
    a bodkin's point.

    Old Shepherd. Why, boy, how is it?

4 III / 3
  • Name of mercy, when was this, boy?
  • Name of mercy, when was this, boy?
  • Clown. I would you did but see how it chafes, how it rages,
    how it takes up the shore! but that's not the
    point. O, the most piteous cry of the poor souls!
    sometimes to see 'em, and not to see 'em; now the
    ship boring the moon with her main-mast, and anon
    swallowed with yest and froth, as you'ld thrust a
    cork into a hogshead. And then for the
    land-service, to see how the bear tore out his
    shoulder-bone; how he cried to me for help and said
    his name was Antigonus, a nobleman. But to make an
    end of the ship, to see how the sea flap-dragoned
    it: but, first, how the poor souls roared, and the
    sea mocked them; and how the poor gentleman roared
    and the bear mocked him, both roaring louder than
    the sea or weather.

    Old Shepherd. Name of mercy, when was this, boy?

5 III / 3
  • Would I had been by, to have helped the old man!
  • Would I had been by, to have helped the old man!
  • Clown. Now, now: I have not winked since I saw these
    sights: the men are not yet cold under water, nor
    the bear half dined on the gentleman: he's at it
    now.

    Old Shepherd. Would I had been by, to have helped the old man!

6 III / 3
  • Heavy matters! heavy matters! but look thee here,
    boy. Now bless thyself: th...
  • Heavy matters! heavy matters! but look thee here,
    boy. Now bless thyself: thou mettest with things
    dying, I with things newborn. Here's a sight for
    thee; look thee, a bearing-cloth for a squire's
    child! look thee here; take up, take up, boy;
    open't. So, let's see: it was told me I should be
    rich by the fairies. This is some changeling:
    open't. What's within, boy?
  • Clown. I would you had been by the ship side, to have
    helped her: there your charity would have lacked footing.

    Old Shepherd. Heavy matters! heavy matters! but look thee here,
    boy. Now bless thyself: thou mettest with things
    dying, I with things newborn. Here's a sight for
    thee; look thee, a bearing-cloth for a squire's
    child! look thee here; take up, take up, boy;
    open't. So, let's see: it was told me I should be
    rich by the fairies. This is some changeling:
    open't. What's within, boy?

7 III / 3
  • This is fairy gold, boy, and 'twill prove so: up
    with't, keep it close: home...
  • This is fairy gold, boy, and 'twill prove so: up
    with't, keep it close: home, home, the next way.
    We are lucky, boy; and to be so still requires
    nothing but secrecy. Let my sheep go: come, good
    boy, the next way home.
  • Clown. You're a made old man: if the sins of your youth
    are forgiven you, you're well to live. Gold! all gold!

    Old Shepherd. This is fairy gold, boy, and 'twill prove so: up
    with't, keep it close: home, home, the next way.
    We are lucky, boy; and to be so still requires
    nothing but secrecy. Let my sheep go: come, good
    boy, the next way home.

8 III / 3
  • That's a good deed. If thou mayest discern by that
    which is left of him what...
  • That's a good deed. If thou mayest discern by that
    which is left of him what he is, fetch me to the
    sight of him.
  • Clown. Go you the next way with your findings. I'll go see
    if the bear be gone from the gentleman and how much
    he hath eaten: they are never curst but when they
    are hungry: if there be any of him left, I'll bury
    it.

    Old Shepherd. That's a good deed. If thou mayest discern by that
    which is left of him what he is, fetch me to the
    sight of him.

9 III / 3
  • 'Tis a lucky day, boy, and we'll do good deeds on't.
  • 'Tis a lucky day, boy, and we'll do good deeds on't.
  • Clown. Marry, will I; and you shall help to put him i' the ground.

    Old Shepherd. 'Tis a lucky day, boy, and we'll do good deeds on't.

10 IV / 4
  • Fie, daughter! when my old wife lived, upon
    This day she was both pantler, b...
  • Fie, daughter! when my old wife lived, upon
    This day she was both pantler, butler, cook,
    Both dame and servant; welcomed all, served all;
    Would sing her song and dance her turn; now here,
    At upper end o' the table, now i' the middle;
    On his shoulder, and his; her face o' fire
    With labour and the thing she took to quench it,
    She would to each one sip. You are retired,
    As if you were a feasted one and not
    The hostess of the meeting: pray you, bid
    These unknown friends to's welcome; for it is
    A way to make us better friends, more known.
    Come, quench your blushes and present yourself
    That which you are, mistress o' the feast: come on,
    And bid us welcome to your sheep-shearing,
    As your good flock shall prosper.
  • Florizel. See, your guests approach:
    Address yourself to entertain them sprightly,
    And let's be red with mirth.
    [Enter Shepherd, Clown, MOPSA, DORCAS, and]
    others, with POLIXENES and CAMILLO disguised]

    Old Shepherd. Fie, daughter! when my old wife lived, upon
    This day she was both pantler, butler, cook,
    Both dame and servant; welcomed all, served all;
    Would sing her song and dance her turn; now here,
    At upper end o' the table, now i' the middle;
    On his shoulder, and his; her face o' fire
    With labour and the thing she took to quench it,
    She would to each one sip. You are retired,
    As if you were a feasted one and not
    The hostess of the meeting: pray you, bid
    These unknown friends to's welcome; for it is
    A way to make us better friends, more known.
    Come, quench your blushes and present yourself
    That which you are, mistress o' the feast: come on,
    And bid us welcome to your sheep-shearing,
    As your good flock shall prosper.

11 IV / 4
  • They call him Doricles; and boasts himself
    To have a worthy feeding: but I h...
  • They call him Doricles; and boasts himself
    To have a worthy feeding: but I have it
    Upon his own report and I believe it;
    He looks like sooth. He says he loves my daughter:
    I think so too; for never gazed the moon
    Upon the water as he'll stand and read
    As 'twere my daughter's eyes: and, to be plain.
    I think there is not half a kiss to choose
    Who loves another best.
  • Polixenes. Pray, good shepherd, what fair swain is this
    Which dances with your daughter?

    Old Shepherd. They call him Doricles; and boasts himself
    To have a worthy feeding: but I have it
    Upon his own report and I believe it;
    He looks like sooth. He says he loves my daughter:
    I think so too; for never gazed the moon
    Upon the water as he'll stand and read
    As 'twere my daughter's eyes: and, to be plain.
    I think there is not half a kiss to choose
    Who loves another best.

12 IV / 4
  • So she does any thing; though I report it,
    That should be silent: if young D...
  • So she does any thing; though I report it,
    That should be silent: if young Doricles
    Do light upon her, she shall bring him that
    Which he not dreams of.
  • Polixenes. She dances featly.

    Old Shepherd. So she does any thing; though I report it,
    That should be silent: if young Doricles
    Do light upon her, she shall bring him that
    Which he not dreams of.

13 IV / 4
  • Away! we'll none on 't: here has been too much
    homely foolery already. I kno...
  • Away! we'll none on 't: here has been too much
    homely foolery already. I know, sir, we weary you.
  • Servant. Master, there is three carters, three shepherds,
    three neat-herds, three swine-herds, that have made
    themselves all men of hair, they call themselves
    Saltiers, and they have a dance which the wenches
    say is a gallimaufry of gambols, because they are
    not in't; but they themselves are o' the mind, if it
    be not too rough for some that know little but
    bowling, it will please plentifully.

    Old Shepherd. Away! we'll none on 't: here has been too much
    homely foolery already. I know, sir, we weary you.

14 IV / 4
  • Leave your prating: since these good men are
    pleased, let them come in; but...
  • Leave your prating: since these good men are
    pleased, let them come in; but quickly now.
  • Servant. One three of them, by their own report, sir, hath
    danced before the king; and not the worst of the
    three but jumps twelve foot and a half by the squier.

    Old Shepherd. Leave your prating: since these good men are
    pleased, let them come in; but quickly now.

15 IV / 4
  • But, my daughter,
    Say you the like to him?
  • But, my daughter,
    Say you the like to him?
  • Camillo. This shows a sound affection.

    Old Shepherd. But, my daughter,
    Say you the like to him?

16 IV / 4
  • Take hands, a bargain!
    And, friends unknown, you shall bear witness to 't: <...
  • Take hands, a bargain!
    And, friends unknown, you shall bear witness to 't:
    I give my daughter to him, and will make
    Her portion equal his.
  • Perdita. I cannot speak
    So well, nothing so well; no, nor mean better:
    By the pattern of mine own thoughts I cut out
    The purity of his.

    Old Shepherd. Take hands, a bargain!
    And, friends unknown, you shall bear witness to 't:
    I give my daughter to him, and will make
    Her portion equal his.

17 IV / 4
  • Come, your hand;
    And, daughter, yours.
  • Come, your hand;
    And, daughter, yours.
  • Florizel. O, that must be
    I' the virtue of your daughter: one being dead,
    I shall have more than you can dream of yet;
    Enough then for your wonder. But, come on,
    Contract us 'fore these witnesses.

    Old Shepherd. Come, your hand;
    And, daughter, yours.

18 IV / 4
  • Let him, my son: he shall not need to grieve
    At knowing of thy choice.
  • Let him, my son: he shall not need to grieve
    At knowing of thy choice.
  • Florizel. No, he must not.

    Old Shepherd. Let him, my son: he shall not need to grieve
    At knowing of thy choice.

19 IV / 4
  • O, my heart!
  • O, my heart!
  • Polixenes. Mark your divorce, young sir,
    [Discovering himself]
    Whom son I dare not call; thou art too base
    To be acknowledged: thou a sceptre's heir,
    That thus affect'st a sheep-hook! Thou old traitor,
    I am sorry that by hanging thee I can
    But shorten thy life one week. And thou, fresh piece
    Of excellent witchcraft, who of force must know
    The royal fool thou copest with,--

    Old Shepherd. O, my heart!

20 IV / 4
  • I cannot speak, nor think
    Nor dare to know that which I know. O sir!
    You...
  • I cannot speak, nor think
    Nor dare to know that which I know. O sir!
    You have undone a man of fourscore three,
    That thought to fill his grave in quiet, yea,
    To die upon the bed my father died,
    To lie close by his honest bones: but now
    Some hangman must put on my shroud and lay me
    Where no priest shovels in dust. O cursed wretch,
    That knew'st this was the prince,
    and wouldst adventure
    To mingle faith with him! Undone! undone!
    If I might die within this hour, I have lived
    To die when I desire.
  • Camillo. Why, how now, father!
    Speak ere thou diest.

    Old Shepherd. I cannot speak, nor think
    Nor dare to know that which I know. O sir!
    You have undone a man of fourscore three,
    That thought to fill his grave in quiet, yea,
    To die upon the bed my father died,
    To lie close by his honest bones: but now
    Some hangman must put on my shroud and lay me
    Where no priest shovels in dust. O cursed wretch,
    That knew'st this was the prince,
    and wouldst adventure
    To mingle faith with him! Undone! undone!
    If I might die within this hour, I have lived
    To die when I desire.

21 IV / 4
  • Nay, but hear me.
  • Nay, but hear me.
  • Clown. See, see; what a man you are now!
    There is no other way but to tell the king
    she's a changeling and none of your flesh and blood.

    Old Shepherd. Nay, but hear me.

22 IV / 4
  • Go to, then.
  • Go to, then.
  • Clown. Nay, but hear me.

    Old Shepherd. Go to, then.

23 IV / 4
  • I will tell the king all, every word, yea, and his
    son's pranks too; who, I...
  • I will tell the king all, every word, yea, and his
    son's pranks too; who, I may say, is no honest man,
    neither to his father nor to me, to go about to make
    me the king's brother-in-law.
  • Clown. She being none of your flesh and blood, your flesh
    and blood has not offended the king; and so your
    flesh and blood is not to be punished by him. Show
    those things you found about her, those secret
    things, all but what she has with her: this being
    done, let the law go whistle: I warrant you.

    Old Shepherd. I will tell the king all, every word, yea, and his
    son's pranks too; who, I may say, is no honest man,
    neither to his father nor to me, to go about to make
    me the king's brother-in-law.

24 IV / 4
  • Well, let us to the king: there is that in this
    fardel will make him scratch...
  • Well, let us to the king: there is that in this
    fardel will make him scratch his beard.
  • Autolycus. [Aside] Very wisely, puppies!

    Old Shepherd. Well, let us to the king: there is that in this
    fardel will make him scratch his beard.

25 IV / 4
  • To the palace, an it like your worship.
  • To the palace, an it like your worship.
  • Autolycus. [Aside] Though I am not naturally honest, I am so
    sometimes by chance: let me pocket up my pedlar's excrement.
    [Takes off his false beard]
    How now, rustics! whither are you bound?

    Old Shepherd. To the palace, an it like your worship.

26 IV / 4
  • Are you a courtier, an't like you, sir?
  • Are you a courtier, an't like you, sir?
  • Clown. Your worship had like to have given us one, if you
    had not taken yourself with the manner.

    Old Shepherd. Are you a courtier, an't like you, sir?

27 IV / 4
  • My business, sir, is to the king.
  • My business, sir, is to the king.
  • Autolycus. Whether it like me or no, I am a courtier. Seest
    thou not the air of the court in these enfoldings?
    hath not my gait in it the measure of the court?
    receives not thy nose court-odor from me? reflect I
    not on thy baseness court-contempt? Thinkest thou,
    for that I insinuate, or toaze from thee thy
    business, I am therefore no courtier? I am courtier
    cap-a-pe; and one that will either push on or pluck
    back thy business there: whereupon I command thee to
    open thy affair.

    Old Shepherd. My business, sir, is to the king.

28 IV / 4
  • I know not, an't like you.
  • I know not, an't like you.
  • Autolycus. What advocate hast thou to him?

    Old Shepherd. I know not, an't like you.

29 IV / 4
  • None, sir; I have no pheasant, cock nor hen.
  • None, sir; I have no pheasant, cock nor hen.
  • Clown. Advocate's the court-word for a pheasant: say you
    have none.

    Old Shepherd. None, sir; I have no pheasant, cock nor hen.

30 IV / 4
  • His garments are rich, but he wears
    them not handsomely.
  • His garments are rich, but he wears
    them not handsomely.
  • Clown. This cannot be but a great courtier.

    Old Shepherd. His garments are rich, but he wears
    them not handsomely.

31 IV / 4
  • Sir, there lies such secrets in this fardel and box,
    which none must know bu...
  • Sir, there lies such secrets in this fardel and box,
    which none must know but the king; and which he
    shall know within this hour, if I may come to the
    speech of him.
  • Autolycus. The fardel there? what's i' the fardel?
    Wherefore that box?

    Old Shepherd. Sir, there lies such secrets in this fardel and box,
    which none must know but the king; and which he
    shall know within this hour, if I may come to the
    speech of him.

32 IV / 4
  • Why, sir?
  • Why, sir?
  • Autolycus. Age, thou hast lost thy labour.

    Old Shepherd. Why, sir?

33 IV / 4
  • So 'tis said, sir; about his son, that should have
    married a shepherd's daug...
  • So 'tis said, sir; about his son, that should have
    married a shepherd's daughter.
  • Autolycus. The king is not at the palace; he is gone aboard a
    new ship to purge melancholy and air himself: for,
    if thou beest capable of things serious, thou must
    know the king is full of grief.

    Old Shepherd. So 'tis said, sir; about his son, that should have
    married a shepherd's daughter.

34 IV / 4
  • An't please you, sir, to undertake the business for
    us, here is that gold I...
  • An't please you, sir, to undertake the business for
    us, here is that gold I have: I'll make it as much
    more and leave this young man in pawn till I bring it you.
  • Clown. He seems to be of great authority: close with him,
    give him gold; and though authority be a stubborn
    bear, yet he is oft led by the nose with gold: show
    the inside of your purse to the outside of his hand,
    and no more ado. Remember 'stoned,' and 'flayed alive.'

    Old Shepherd. An't please you, sir, to undertake the business for
    us, here is that gold I have: I'll make it as much
    more and leave this young man in pawn till I bring it you.

35 IV / 4
  • Ay, sir.
  • Ay, sir.
  • Autolycus. After I have done what I promised?

    Old Shepherd. Ay, sir.

36 IV / 4
  • Let's before as he bids us: he was provided to do us good.
  • Let's before as he bids us: he was provided to do us good.
  • Clown. We are blest in this man, as I may say, even blest.

    Old Shepherd. Let's before as he bids us: he was provided to do us good.

37 V / 2
  • Come, boy; I am past moe children, but thy sons and
    daughters will be all ge...
  • Come, boy; I am past moe children, but thy sons and
    daughters will be all gentlemen born.
  • Autolycus. Now, had I not the dash of my former life in me,
    would preferment drop on my head. I brought the old
    man and his son aboard the prince: told him I heard
    them talk of a fardel and I know not what: but he
    at that time, overfond of the shepherd's daughter,
    so he then took her to be, who began to be much
    sea-sick, and himself little better, extremity of
    weather continuing, this mystery remained
    undiscovered. But 'tis all one to me; for had I
    been the finder out of this secret, it would not
    have relished among my other discredits.
    [Enter Shepherd and Clown]
    Here come those I have done good to against my will,
    and already appearing in the blossoms of their fortune.

    Old Shepherd. Come, boy; I am past moe children, but thy sons and
    daughters will be all gentlemen born.

38 V / 2
  • And so have I, boy.
  • And so have I, boy.
  • Clown. Ay, and have been so any time these four hours.

    Old Shepherd. And so have I, boy.

39 V / 2
  • We may live, son, to shed many more.
  • We may live, son, to shed many more.
  • Clown. So you have: but I was a gentleman born before my
    father; for the king's son took me by the hand, and
    called me brother; and then the two kings called my
    father brother; and then the prince my brother and
    the princess my sister called my father father; and
    so we wept, and there was the first gentleman-like
    tears that ever we shed.

    Old Shepherd. We may live, son, to shed many more.

40 V / 2
  • Prithee, son, do; for we must be gentle, now we are
    gentlemen.
  • Prithee, son, do; for we must be gentle, now we are
    gentlemen.
  • Autolycus. I humbly beseech you, sir, to pardon me all the
    faults I have committed to your worship and to give
    me your good report to the prince my master.

    Old Shepherd. Prithee, son, do; for we must be gentle, now we are
    gentlemen.

41 V / 2
  • You may say it, but not swear it.
  • You may say it, but not swear it.
  • Clown. Give me thy hand: I will swear to the prince thou
    art as honest a true fellow as any is in Bohemia.

    Old Shepherd. You may say it, but not swear it.

42 V / 2
  • How if it be false, son?
  • How if it be false, son?
  • Clown. Not swear it, now I am a gentleman? Let boors and
    franklins say it, I'll swear it.

    Old Shepherd. How if it be false, son?

© Copyright 2017-2022 Shakespeare Network - Maximianno Cobra - All rights reserved.

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© Copyright 2017-2022 Shakespeare Network - Maximianno Cobra - All rights reserved.