Twelfth Night

by: William Shakespeare

  Act 3 Scene 4

page Act 3 Scene 4 Page 11

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Enter SIR TOBY BELCH and FABIAN
SIR TOBY BELCH and FABIAN enter.

SIR TOBY BELCH

195Gentleman, God save thee.

SIR TOBY BELCH

Hello, sir.

VIOLA

And you, sir.

VIOLA

Hello to you.

SIR TOBY BELCH

That defense thou hast, betake thee to ’t. Of what nature the wrongs are thou hast done him, I know not, but thy intercepter, full of despite, bloody as the hunter, attends thee at the orchard end. Dismount thy tuck, be yare in thy preparation, for thy assailant is quick, skillful and deadly.

SIR TOBY BELCH

You’d better think up a way to defend yourself. I don’t know what you’ve done to upset him, but someone has challenged you to a duel. He’s riled up and bloodthirsty, and he’s waiting for you at the back of the orchard. Draw your sword and get on your toes, because your assailant is quick, skillful, and deadly.

VIOLA

You mistake, sir. I am sure no man hath any quarrel to me. My remembrance is very free and clear from any image of offense done to any man.

VIOLA

There must be some mistake, sir. I’m sure nobody would have any reason to fight with me. I can’t remember anything I’ve ever done to offend anyone.

SIR TOBY BELCH

205You’ll find it otherwise, I assure you. Therefore, if you hold your life at any price, betake you to your guard, for your opposite hath in him what youth, strength, skill, and wrath can furnish man withal.

SIR TOBY BELCH

You’re wrong about that, I assure you. So if you value your life at all, be on your guard. Your opponent has enough youth, strength, skill, and anger to outfight anyone.

VIOLA

I pray you, sir, what is he?

VIOLA

But who is this person, sir?

SIR TOBY BELCH

210He is knight, dubbed with unhatched rapier and on carpet consideration, but he is a devil in private brawl. Souls and bodies hath he divorced three, and his incensement at this moment is so implacable that satisfaction can be none but by pangs of death and sepulchre. Hob, nob, is his word. “Give ’t or take ’t.”

SIR TOBY BELCH

He’s a knight. He was made a knight because of his court connections, but when he’s fighting a civilian he’s a real monster. He’s killed three people, and he’s so furious right now that the only thing that will satisfy him is seeing you die. “Fight to the death” is his motto.