The Tempest

by: William Shakespeare

  Act 1 Scene 2

page Act 1 Scene 2 Page 17

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MIRANDA

    Abhorrèd slave,
Which any print of goodness wilt not take,
Being capable of all ill! I pitied thee,
Took pains to make thee speak, taught thee each hour
360One thing or other. When thou didst not, savage,
Know thine own meaning, but wouldst gabble like
A thing most brutish, I endowed thy purposes
With words that made them known. But thy vile race,
Though thou didst learn, had that in ’t which good natures
365Could not abide to be with. Therefore wast thou
Deservedly confined into this rock,
Who hadst deserved more than a prison.

MIRANDA

You horrid slave, you can’t be trained to be good, and you’re capable of anything evil! I pitied you, worked hard to teach you to speak, and taught you some new thing practically every hour. When you didn’t know what you were saying, and were babbling like an animal, I helped you find words to make your point understandable. But you had bad blood in you, no matter how much you learned, and good people couldn’t stand to be near you. So you got what you deserved, and were locked up in this cave, which is more fitting for the likes of you than a prison would be.

CALIBAN

You taught me language, and my profit on ’t
Is I know how to curse. The red plague rid you
370For learning me your language!

CALIBAN

You taught me language, and all I can do with it is curse. Damn you for teaching me your language!

PROSPERO

     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,
375Fill all thy bones with aches, make thee roar
That beasts shall tremble at thy din.

PROSPERO

Get out of here, you son of a bitch! Bring us wood, and be quick about it. Are you shrugging and making faces, you evil thing? If you neglect my orders or do them grudgingly, I’ll double you up with pains and cramps, and make all your bones ache, and make you scream so loud that the wild animals will tremble when they hear you.

CALIBAN

      No, pray thee.
(aside) I must obey. His art is of such power,
It would control my dam’s god, Setebos,
And make a vassal of him.

CALIBAN

No, please. (to himself) I have to obey. He’s got such strong magic powers that he could conquer and enslave the god, Setebos, that my mother used to worship.

PROSPERO

    So, slave, hence!

PROSPERO

Go then, slave.
Exit CALIBAN
CALIBAN exits.