ANGELO in «Maß für Maß»

    Act II, Scene II 

    Angelo alone. 

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    What's this? what's this? is this her fault or mine?
    The tempter, or the tempted, who sins most?
    Ha! Not she, nor doth she tempt; but it is I
    That, lying by the violet in the sun,
    Do as the carrion does, not as the flower,
    Corrupt with virtuous season. Can it be
    That modesty may more betray our sense
    Than woman's lightness? Having wasteground enough,
    Shall we desire to raze the sanctuary
    And pitch our evils there? O fie, fie, fie!
    What dost thou? or what are thou, Angelo?
    Dost thou desire her foully for those things
    That make her good? O, let her brother live:
    Thieves for their robbery have authority
    When judges steal themselves. What, do I love her,
    That I desire to hear her speak again,
    And feast upon her eyes? what is't I dream on?
    O cunning enemy that, to catch a saint,
    With saints dost bait thy hook: most dangerous
    Is that temptation that doth goad us on
    To sin in loving virtue. Never could the strumpet
    With all her double vigor, art and nature,
    Once stir my temper; but this virtuous maid
    Subdues me quite. Ever till now,
    When men were fond, I smiled and wondered how.


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