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He discovers STROBILUS, and drags him from behind the altar. Out, out, you earthworm1, who have this instant crept out of the earth; who just now were nowhere seen, and now that you are seen shall die for it. By my faith, you juggler, I'll receive you now after a disagreable fashion. Begins to shake and beat him. STROBILUS
What the curst plague does ail you? What business have you with me, old fellow? Why do you torment me? Why are you dragging me? For what reason are you beating me? EUCLIO
You out-and-out whipping-post, do you even ask that, you, not thief, but thrice-dotted thief. STROBILUS
What have I stolen from you? EUCLIO
Give me that back here, if you please. STROBILUS
What do you want me to give you back? EUCLIO
Do you ask me that? STROBILUS
As for me, I've taken nothing away from you. EUCLIO
But give up that which you have taken away for yourself. Are you going to do so? STROBILUS
Do what? EUCLIO
You can't carry it off. STROBILUS
What do you want? EUCLIO
Lay it down. STROBILUS
Troth, for my part, I think that you are in the habit2 of quizzing, old gentleman. EUCLIO
Put that down, please; cease your quibbling; I'm not trifling now. STROBILUS
What am I to put down? Why don't you mention it, whatever it is, by its own name? By my faith, I really have neither taken nor touched anything. EUCLIO
Show me your hands, here. STROBILUS
Well, I do show them; see, here they are. Holdinq out his hands. EUCLIO
I see them. Come, show me the third3, as well. STROBILUS
aside . Sprites, and frenzy, and madness, possess this old fellow. Are you doing me an injustice, or not? EUCLIO
A very great one, I confess, inasmuch as you are not strung up; and that too shall be done this moment, un less you do confess. STROBILUS
What am I to confess to you? EUCLIO
What it was you took away hence. STROBILUS
May the Gods confound me, if I've taken away anything of yours, aside and if I don't wish I had taken it away. EUCLIO
Come then, shake out your cloak. STROBILUS
At your pleasure. Shakes it. EUCLIO
You haven't it among your under-clothing? STROBILUS
Search where you please. EUCLIO
Pshaw! how civilly the rascal speaks, that I mayn't suppose he has taken it away! I know your tricks. Come, show me here again that right hand. STROBILUS
Here it is. Extending it. EUC. Now show me your left. STROBILUS
Well, then, I show you both, in fact. Extending them. EUCLIO
Now I leave off searching. Give back that here. STROBILUS
Give back what? EUCLIO
Are you trifling with me? You certainly have got it. STROBILUS
I, got it? Got what? EUCLIO
I shan't say; you want to hear. Whatever you have of mine, give it back. STROBILUS
You are mad; you've searched me all over at your own pleasure, and yet you've found nothing of yours in my possession. EUCLIO
starting . Stop, stop; who was that? Who was the other4 that was within here, together with yourself? Troth, I'm undone; he's now rummaging about within. If I let this one go, he'll escape. At last, I've now searched this one all over; he has got nothing. Be off where you please; Jupiter and the Gods confound you! STROBILUS
He returns his thanks not amiss5. EUCLIO
I'll go in here now, and I'll at once throttle this accomplice of yours. Will you not fly hence from my sight? Will you away from here, or no? STROBILUS
I'm off. EUCLIO
Take you care, please, how I see you. (He goes into the Temple.)
1 Earthworm: He thinks, that in the short space of time during which he has been absent in the Temple, he can only have sprung out of the earth, as he had not seen him a few minutes before; and taking him to be a sort of 'præstigiator," or "juggler," lie fancies that he has followed him into the Temple, and purloined the treasure.
2 In the habit: The real meaning of the author in this line is so indelicate, that it requires another turn to be given to the passage.
3 Show me the third: This passage has been considered as extravagant; but it really does not appear inconsistent with the ridiculous conduct of the wretched Euclio throughout. Thornton supposes that the following passage in the old play of Albumazar, Act III., Sc. 8 (where Trinculo questions Ronca about the purse, which the latter has stolen from him), is an imitation of this passage:
Show me your hand. Ron.
Here 'tis. Trin.
But where's the other? Ron.
Why, here. Trin.
But I mean, where's your other hand? Ron.
Think you me the giant with an hundred hands? Trin.
Give me your right. Ron.
My right? Trin.
Your left? Ron.
My left? Trin.
Now both. Ron.
There's both, my dear Antonio”
4 Who was the other: This suspicion in Euclio is very natural; and he asks the question very artfully, for the purpose of catching a confession from him by inadvertence.
5 Thanks not amiss: He says this sarcastically. If he gets such thanks when he has not stolen the treasure, what would he have got supposing that he had?
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