The Winter's Tale

by: William Shakespeare

  Act 4 Scene 4

page Act 4 Scene 4 Page 19

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FLORIZEL

No, good sir;
He has his health and ampler strength indeed
445Than most have of his age.

FLORIZEL

No, good sir, he is healthy, and indeed he is even stronger than most people of his age.

POLIXENES

By my white beard,
You offer him, if this be so, a wrong
Something unfilial: reason my son
Should choose himself a wife, but as good reason
450The father, all whose joy is nothing else
But fair posterity, should hold some counsel
In such a business.

POLIXENES

By my white beard, if this is so then you are wronging him in a way unsuitable for a son. It’s reasonable that a son should choose a wife, but it’s just as reasonable that his father should be able to have some say in the matter, since all his joy is in his family.

FLORIZEL

I yield all this;
But for some other reasons, my grave sir,
455Which ’tis not fit you know, I not acquaint
My father of this business.

FLORIZEL

I agree with all you’re saying. But there are other reasons, my serious sir, which it’s best you don’t know regarding why I don’t tell my father of this.

POLIXENES

Let him know’t.

POLIXENES

Let him know about it.

FLORIZEL

He shall not.

FLORIZEL

He won’t know about it.

POLIXENES

Prithee, let him.

POLIXENES

Please, let him.

FLORIZEL

460No, he must not.

FLORIZEL

No, he must not.

SHEPHERD

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

SHEPHERD

Let him know, my son. He won’t grieve when he hears your choice.

FLORIZEL

Come, come, he must not.
Mark our contract.

FLORIZEL

Come, come, he must not know. Sign our contract.

POLIXENES

465Mark your divorce, young sir,

POLIXENES

Sign your divorce, young sir!