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Enter OLYMPIO, from the house, speaking to CLEOSTRATA, within.
By my faith, all in an instant shut me up in a hot furnace, and parch me there for a hard-baked biscuit1, good mistress, before you shall gain that point of me which you desire. STALINO
apart . I'm all right. My hope's realized, according as I hear his words. OLYMPIO
at the door, to his MISTRESS, within . But why do you frighten me about liberty? Why, even though you should oppose it, and your son as well, against your wills and in spite of you both, for a single penny2 I can become free. STALINO
stepping forward . What's this? Who are you wrangling with, Olympio? OLYMPIO
With the same person that you always are. STALINO
What, with my wife? OLYMPIO
What wife are you speaking of to me? Really you are a hunter, as it were: your nights and days you pass with a female cur3. STALINO
What does she say? What's she talking to you about? OLYMPIO
She's begging and entreating of me that I won't be taking Casina as my wife. STALINO
What did you say after that? OLYMPIO
Why, I declared that I wouldn't give way to Jupiter himself, if he were to entreat me. STALINO
May the Gods preserve you for me! OLYMPIO
She's now all in a ferment; she's swelling so against me. STALINO
By my troth, I could like her to burst in the middle. OLYMPIO
I' faith, I fancy she will, if indeed you manage cleverly. But your amorousness, i' faith, is a cause of trouble to me; your wife is at enmity with me, your son at enmity, my fellow-servants at enmity. STALINO
What matters that to you? So long as pointing to himself this Jupiter only is propitious to you, do you take care and esteem the lesser Gods at a straw's value. OLYMPIO
That's great nonsense; as if you didn't know how suddenly your human Jupiters take to dying. So after all, if you, my Jupiter, are dead and gone, when your realm devolves upon the lesser Gods, who shall then come to the rescue of my back, or head, or legs? STALINO
Affairs will go with you better than you expect, if I obtain this--the enjoyment of my Casina. OLYMPIO
I' faith, I do not think it possibly can be; so earnestly is your wife striving that she shall not be given to me. STALINO
But this way I'll proceed: I'll put the lots in an urn, and draw the lots for yourself and Chalinus. I find that the business has come to this pass; it's necessary to fight with swords hand to hand. OLYMPIO
What, if the lot should turn out different from what you wish? STALINO
Speak with good omen. I rely upon the Gods; we'll trust in the Gods. OLYMPIO
That expression I wouldn't purchase at a rotten thread, for all people are relying upon the Gods; but still I've frequently seen many of those deceived who relied upon the Gods. STALINO
But hold your tongue a little while. Pointing. OLYMPIO
What is it you mean? STALINO
Why look; here's Chalinus coming from the house, out here, with the urn and the lots. Now, with standards closing, we shall fight.
1 A hard-baked biscuit: "Panis rubidus," literally, "red bread," was probably a kind of bread or biscuit, which received its name from its being highly baked, till it was "red," or of a deep-brown colour.
2 For a single penny: "Libella," the same as the "as;" a small silver coin, the tenth part of the "denarius."
3 With a female cur: "Cum cane." Literally, "with a bitch" an expression too coarse for ears polite.
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