The Two Gentlemen of Verona

William Shakespeare
No Fear Act 2 Scene 4
No Fear Act 2 Scene 4 Page 3

Original Text

Modern Text

DUKE

Hath he not a son?

DUKE

Doesn’t he have a son?

VALENTINE

Ay, my good lord, a son that well deserves
The honor and regard of such a father.

VALENTINE

Yes, my good lord, a son that is also deserving of the honor and reputation of his esteemed father.

DUKE

You know him well?

DUKE

Do you know him well?

VALENTINE

50I knew him as myself, for from our infancy
We have conversed and spent our hours together.
And though myself have been an idle truant,
Omitting the sweet benefit of time
To clothe mine age with angel-like perfection,
55Yet hath Sir Proteus—for that’s his name—
Made use and fair advantage of his days;
His years but young, but his experience old;
His head unmellowed, but his judgment ripe.
And, in a word—for far behind his worth
60Comes all the praises that I now bestow—
He is complete in feature and in mind
With all good grace to grace a gentleman.

VALENTINE

I know him as well as I know myself, since he and I have been in each other’s company and spent time together since we were infants. And even though I myself have been an unproductive delinquent and have wasted my youth on frivolity, Sir Proteus—that’s his name, you see—made good use of his time. He may be young, but he has the experience of a much older person. His hair isn’t gray, but his judgment is wise. Any praise I give is far less than he deserves, but in a word, he is perfect physically and mentally, with all the good graces of a true gentleman.

DUKE

Beshrew me, sir, but if he make this good,
He is as worthy for an empress’ love
65As meet to be an emperor’s counselor.
Well, sir, this gentleman is come to me,
With commendation from great potentates,
And here he means to spend his time awhile.
I think ’tis no unwelcome news to you.

DUKE

Damn! Sir, if this account is true, he is as worthy of an empress’s love as he is fit to be an emperor’s adviser. Well, sir, this gentleman has come to me with commendations from powerful men, and he intends to spend his time here for a while. I think it’s good news for you.

Popular pages: The Two Gentlemen of Verona