Reference > William Shakespeare > The Oxford Shakespeare > The Tempest
William Shakespeare (1564–1616).  The Oxford Shakespeare.  1914.
The Tempest
Act II. Scene II.
Another Part of the Island.
Enter CALIBAN, with a burden of wood.
A noise of thunder heard.
  Cal.  All the infections that the sun sucks up
From bogs, fens, flats, on Prosper fall, and make him        5
By inch-meal a disease! His spirits hear me,
And yet I needs must curse. But they’ll nor pinch,
Fright me with urchin-shows, pitch me i’ the mire,
Nor lead me, like a firebrand, in the dark
Out of my way, unless he bid ’em; but        10
For every trifle are they set upon me:
Sometime like apes, that mow and chatter at me
And after bite me; then like hedge-hogs, which
Lie tumbling in my bare-foot way and mount
Their pricks at my foot-fall; sometime am I        15
All wound with adders, who with cloven tongues
Do hiss me into madness.—
        Lo now! lo!
Here comes a spirit of his, and to torment me        20
For bringing wood in slowly: I’ll fall flat;
Perchance he will not mind me.
  Trin.  Here’s neither bush nor shrub to bear off any weather at all, and another storm brewing; I hear it sing i’ the wind: yond same black cloud, yond huge one, looks like a foul bombard that would shed his liquor. If it should thunder as it did before, I know not where to hide my head: yond same cloud cannot choose but fall by pailfuls.—What have we here? a man or a fish? Dead or alive? A fish: he smells like a fish; a very ancient and fish-like smell; a kind of not of the newest Poor-John. A strange fish! Were I in England now,—as once I was,—and had but this fish painted, not a holiday fool there but would give a piece of silver: there would this monster make a man; any strange beast there makes a man. When they will not give a doit to relieve a lame beggar, they will lay out ten to see a dead Indian. Legg’d like a man! and his fins like arms! Warm, o’ my troth! I do now let loose my opinion, hold it no longer; this is no fish, but an islander, that hath lately suffered by a thunderbolt.  [Thunder.]  Alas! the storm is come again: my best way is to creep under his gaberdine; there is no other shelter hereabout: misery acquaints a man with strange bedfellows. I will here shroud till the dregs of the storm be past.
Enter STEPHANO, singing; a bottle in his hand.
I shall no more to sea, to sea,
        Here shall I die a-shore:—
This is a very scurvy tune to sing at a man’s funeral:
Well, here’s my comfort.  [Drinks.
The master, the swabber, the boatswain and I,
      The gunner and his mate,
Lov’d Mall, Meg, and Marian and Margery,
      But none of us car’d for Kate;
      For she had a tongue with a tang,
      Would cry to a sailor, ‘Go hang!’
She lov’d not the savour of tar nor of pitch,
Yet a tailor might scratch her where-e’er she did itch:
      Then to sea, boys, and let her go hang.
This is a scurvy tune too: but here’s my comfort.  [Drinks.
  Cal.  Do not torment me: O!
  Ste.  What’s the matter?        30
Have we devils here? Do you put tricks upon us with savages and men of Ind? Ha! I have not ’scaped drowning, to be afeard now of your four legs; for it hath been said, As proper a man as ever went on four legs cannot make him give ground: and it shall be said so again while Stephano breathes at’s nostrils.
  Cal.  The spirit torments me: O!
  Ste.  This is some monster of the isle with four legs, who hath got, as I take it, an ague. Where the devil should he learn our language? I will give him some relief, if it be but for that: if I can recover him and keep him tame and get to Naples with him, he’s a present for any emperor that ever trod on neat’s-leather.
  Cal.  Do not torment me, prithee: I’ll bring my wood home faster.
  Ste.  He’s in his fit now and does not talk after the wisest. He shall taste of my bottle: if he have never drunk wine afore it will go near to remove his fit. If I can recover him, and keep him tame, I will not take too much for him: he shall pay for him that hath him, and that soundly.        35
  Cal.  Thou dost me yet but little hurt; thou wilt anon, I know it by thy trembling: now Prosper works upon thee.
  Ste.  Come on your ways: open your mouth; here is that which will give language to you, cat. Open your mouth: this will shake your shaking, I can tell you, and that soundly  [gives CALIBAN drink]: you cannot tell who’s your friend; open your chaps again.
  Trin.  I should know that voice: it should be—but he is drowned, and these are devils. O! defend me.
  Ste.  Four legs and two voices; a most delicate monster! His forward voice now is to speak well of his friend; his backward voice is to utter foul speeches, and to detract. If all the wine in my bottle will recover him, I will help his ague. Come. Amen! I will pour some in thy other mouth.
  Trin.  Stephano!        40
  Ste.  Doth thy other mouth call me? Mercy! mercy! This is a devil, and no monster: I will leave him; I have no long spoon.
  Trin.  Stephano!—if thou beest Stephano, touch me, and speak to me; for I am Trinculo:—be not afeard—thy good friend Trinculo.
  Ste.  If thou beest Trinculo, come forth. I’ll pull thee by the lesser legs: if any be Trinculo’s legs, these are they. Thou art very Trinculo indeed! How cam’st thou to be the siege of this moon-calf? Can he vent Trinculos?
  Trin.  I took him to be killed with a thunder-stroke. But art thou not drowned, Stephano? I hope now thou art not drowned. Is the storm overblown? I hid me under the dead moon-calf’s gaberdine for fear of the storm. And art thou living, Stephano? O Stephano! two Neapolitans ’scaped!
  Ste.  Prithee, do not turn me about: my stomach is not constant.        45
  Cal.  [Aside.]  These be fine things an if they be not sprites.
That’s a brave god and bears celestial liquor:
I will kneel to him.
  Ste.  How didst thou ’scape? How cam’st thou hither? swear by this bottle, how thou cam’st hither. I escaped upon a butt of sack, which the sailors heaved overboard, by this bottle! which I made of the bark of a tree with mine own hands, since I was cast ashore.
  Cal.  I’ll swear upon that bottle, to be thy true subject; for the liquor is not earthly.        50
  Ste.  Here: swear then, how thou escapedst.
  Trin.  Swam ashore, man, like a duck: I can swim like a duck, I’ll be sworn.
  Ste.  Here, kiss the book  [gives TRINCULO drink].  Though thou canst swim like a duck, thou art made like a goose.
  Trin.  O Stephano! hast any more of this?
  Ste.  The whole butt, man: my cellar is in a rock by the seaside, where my wine is hid. How now, moon-calf! how does thine ague?        55
  Cal.  Hast thou not dropped from heaven?
  Ste.  Out o’ the moon, I do assure thee: I was the man in the moon, when time was.
  Cal.  I have seen thee in her, and I do adore thee; my mistress showed me thee, and thy dog, and thy bush.
  Ste.  Come, swear to that; kiss the book; I will furnish it anon with new contents; swear.
  Trin.  By this good light, this is a very shallow monster.—I afeard of him!—a very weak monster.—The man i’ the moon! a most poor credulous monster!—Well drawn, monster, in good sooth.        60
  Cal.  I’ll show thee every fertile inch o’ the island;
And I will kiss thy foot. I prithee, be my god.
  Trin.  By this light, a most perfidious and drunken monster: when his god’s asleep, he’ll rob his bottle.
  Cal.  I’ll kiss thy foot: I’ll swear myself thy subject.
  Ste.  Come on then; down, and swear.        65
  Trin.  I shall laugh myself to death at this puppy-headed monster. A most scurvy monster! I could find in my heart to beat him,—
  Ste.  Come, kiss.
  Trin.  But that the poor monster’s in drink: an abominable monster!
  Cal.  I’ll shew thee the best springs; I’ll pluck thee berries;
I’ll fish for thee, and get thee wood enough.        70
A plague upon the tyrant that I serve!
I’ll bear him no more sticks, but follow thee,
Thou wondrous man.
  Trin.  A most ridiculous monster, to make a wonder of a poor drunkard!
  Cal.  I prithee, let me bring thee where crabs grow;        75
And I with my long nails will dig thee pig-nuts;
Show thee a jay’s nest and instruct thee how
To snare the nimble marmozet; I’ll bring thee
To clust’ring filberts, and sometimes I’ll get thee
Young scamels from the rock. Wilt thou go with me?        80
  Ste.  I prithee now, lead the way, without any more talking.—Trinculo, the king and all our company else being drowned, we will inherit here.—Here; bear my bottle.—Fellow Trinculo, we’ll fill him by and by again.
  Cal.  Farewell, master; farewell, farewell.  [Sings drunkenly.
  Trin.  A howling monster, a drunken monster.
No more dams I’ll make for fish;
  Nor fetch in firing
  At requiring,
Nor scrape trenchering, nor wash dish;
  ’Ban, ’Ban, Ca—Caliban,
  Has a new master—Get a new man.
Freedom, high-day! high-day, freedom! freedom! high-day, freedom!        85
  Ste.  O brave monster! lead the way.  [Exeunt.

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