The Winter's Tale

by: William Shakespeare

Original Text

Modern Text

A prison.
A prison.
Enter PAULINA, a Gentleman, and Attendants
PAULINA, a gentleman, and attendants enter.
PAULINA
The keeper of the prison, call to him;
let him have knowledge who I am.
PAULINA
Call the prison overseer. Tell him who I am.
Exit Gentleman
The gentleman exits.
Good lady,
No court in Europe is too good for thee;
5What dost thou then in prison?
No court in Europe is good enough for you, good lady, so why are you in prison?
Re-enter Gentleman, with the Gaoler
The gentleman re-enters, with the Jailer.
Now, good sir,
You know me, do you not?
Good sir, you know me, don’t you?
GAOLER
For a worthy lady
And one whom much I honour.
JAILER
I know you as a worthy woman and one I have great respect for.
PAULINA
10Pray you then,
Conduct me to the queen.
PAULINA
Please, then, take me to the queen.
GAOLER
I may not, madam:
To the contrary I have express commandment.
JAILER
I can’t, madam. I have explicit orders not to.
PAULINA
Here’s ado,
15To lock up honesty and honour from
The access of gentle visitors!
Is’t lawful, pray you,
To see her women? any of them? Emilia?
PAULINA
Such a fuss just to keep kind visitors from seeing such an honest and honorable lady! Am I allowed to see her attendants? Any of them? Emilia?
GAOLER
So please you, madam,
20To put apart these your attendants, I
Shall bring Emilia forth.
JAILER
If you would please send away your attendants, I’ll bring out Emilia.

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