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Claud. Another Hero?
Hero.
Nothing certainer :
One Hero died defil'd; but I do live,
And, surely as I live, I am a maid.

D. Pedro. The former Hero! Hero that is dead! Leon. She died my lord, but whiles her slander lived.

Friar. All this amazement can I qualify;
When, after that the holy rites are ended,
I'll tell you largely of fair Hero's death:
Mean time, let wonder seem familiar,
And to the chapel let us presently.

Bene. Soft and fair, friar. Which is Beatrice?
Beat. I answer to that name; [Unmasking.]
What is your will?

Bene. Do not you love me?
Beat.

No, no more than reason. Bene. Why, then your uncle, and the prince, and Claudio,

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Beat. I would not deny you; — but, by this good day, I yield upon great persuasion; and, partly, to save your life, for I was told you were in a consumption.

Bene. Peace, I will stop your mouth.

Have been deceived; for they swore you did.

Beat. Do not you love me?

Bene.
No, no more than reason.
Beat. Why, then my cousin, Margaret, and
Ursula,

Are much deceiv'd; for they did swear, you did.
Bene. They swore that you were almost sick
for me.
Beat. They swore that you were well-nigh dead
for me.
Bene. 'Tis no such matter:- Then you do not
love me?

Beat. No, truly, but in friendly recompense. Leon. Come, cousin, I am sure your love the gentleman.

Claud. And I'll be sworn upon't, that he loves her; For here's a paper, written in his hand, A halting sonnet of his own pure brain, Fashion'd to Beatrice.

Hero.

And here's another. Writ in my cousin's hand, stolen from her pocket, Containing her affection unto Benedick.

Bene. A miracle! here's our own hands against our hearts! - Come, I will have thee; but, by this light, I take thee for pity.

[Kissing her. D. Pedro. How dost thou, Benedick the married man?

Bene. I'll tell thee what, prince; a college of witcrackers cannot flout me out of my humour: Dost thou think, I care for a satire, or an epigram? No: if a man will be beaten with brains, he shall wear nothing handsome about him: In brief, since I do propose to marry, I will think nothing to any purpose that the world can say against it; and therefore never flout at me for what I have said against it; for man is a giddy thing, and this is my conclusion. · For thy part, Claudio, I did think to have beaten thee; but in that thou art like to be my kinsman, live unbruised, and love my cousin.

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MIDSUMMER-NIGHT'S DREAM

THESEUS, Duke of Athens.
EGEUS, father to Hermia.
LYSANDER,
DEMETRIUS,

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PHILOSTRATE, master of the revels to Theseus.

QUINCE, the carpenter.
SNUG, the joiner.

BOTTOM, the weaver.
FLUTE, the bellows-mender.

in love with Hermia.

SNOUT, the tinker. STARVELING, the tailor.

PERSONS REPRESENTED.

SCENE I.

HIPPOLYTA, Queen of the Amazons, betrothed to Theseus.

HERMIA, daughter to Egeus, in love with Lysander. HELENA, in love with Demetrius.

Enter THESEUS, HIPPOLYTA, PHILOSTRATE, and Attendants.

SCENE, ATHENS, and a Wood not far from it.

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OBERON, king of the fairies.
TITANIA, queen of the fairies.
PUCK, or Robin-goodfellow, a fairy.
PEAS-BLOSSOM,

fairies.

ACT I.

- Athens. A Room in the Palace of Enter EGEUS, Hermia, Lysander, and Demetrius.

Theses.

Go, Philostrate, Stir up the Athenian youth to merriments; Awake the pert and nimble spirit of mirth; Turn melancholy forth to funerals, The pale companion is not for our pomp. [Erit PHILOSTRATE. Hippolyta, I woo'd thee with my sword, And won thy love, doing thee injuries; But I will wed thee in another key, With pomp, with triumph, and with revelling.

COBWEB,

Мотн,
MUSTARD-SEED,
Pyramus,
Thisbe,

Wall,
Moonshine,
Lion,

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characters in the Interlude perform. by the Clowns.

Other Fairies attending their King and Queen. Attendants on Theseus and Hippolyta.

Ege. Happy be Theseus, our renowned duke! The. Thanks, good Egeus: What's the news with thee?

Ege. Full of vexation come I, with complaint Against my child, my daughter Hermia. Stand forth, Demetrius ; My noble lord, This man hath my consent to marry her: Stand forth, Lysander; -and, my gracious duke, This hath bewitch'd the bosom of my child: Thou, thou, Lysander, thou hast given her rhymes, And interchang'd love-tokens with my child: Thou hast by moon-light at her window sung, With feigning voice, verses of feigning love; And stol'n the impression of her fantasy With bracelets of thy hair, rings, gawds, conceits, Knacks, trifles, nosegays, sweet-meats; messengers Of strong prevailment in unharden'd youth : With cunning hast thou filch'd my daughter's heart; Turn'd her obedience, which is due to me, To stubborn harshness: :- And, my gracious duke, Be it so she will not here before your grace Consent to marry with Demetrius, I beg the ancient privilege of Athens; As she is mine, I may dispose of her: Which shall be either to this gentleman,

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Or to her death; according to our law,
Immediately provided in that case,

And won her soul; and she, sweet lady, dotes,
Devoutly dotes, dotes in idolatry,

The. What say you, Hermia? be advis'd, fair Upon this spotted and inconstant man.
maid:

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Chanting faint hymns to the cold fruitless moon.
Thrice blessed they, that master so their blood,
To undergo such maiden pilgrimage:
But earthlier happy is the rose distill'd,
Than that, which, withering on the virgin thorn,
Grows, lives, and dies, in single blessedness.

Her. So will I grow, so live, so die, my lord,
Ere I will yield my virgin patent up
Unto his lordship, whose unwished yoke
My soul consents not to give sovereignty.

The. Take time to pause; and, by the next new

moon

(The sealing-day betwixt my love and me,
For everlasting bond of fellowship,)
Upon that day either prepare to die,
For disobedience to your father's will;
Or else, to wed Demetrius, as he would:
Or on Diana's altar to protest,

For aye, austerity and single life.
Dem. Relent, sweet Hermia;-

yield
Thy crazed title to my certain right.
Lys. You have her father's love, Demetrius ;
Let me have Hermia's: do you marry him.

Ege. Scornful Lysander! true he hath my love;
And what is mine iny love shall render him;
And she is mine; and all my right of her
I do estate unto Demetrius.

Lys. I am, my lord, as well deriv'd as he,
As well possess'd; my love is more than his ;
My fortunes every way as fairly rank'd,
If not with vantage, as Demetrius';

And, which is more than all these boasts can be,
I am belov'd of beauteous Hermia:

Why should not I then prosecute my right?
Demetrius, I'll avouch it to his head,
Made love to Nedar's daughter, Helena,

The. I must confess, that I have heard so much,
And with Demetrius thought to have spoke thereof;
But, being over-full of self-affairs,

My mind did lose it. But, Demetrius, come;
And come, Egeus; you shall go with me,

I have some private schooling for you both.
For you, fair Hermia, look you arm yourself
To fit your fancies to your father's will;
Or else the law of Athens yields you up
(Which by no means we may extenuate,)
To death, or to a vow of single life. -
Come, my Hippolyta; What cheer, my love?
Demetrius, and Egeus, go along :
I must employ you in some business
Against our nuptial; and confer with you
Of something nearly that concerns yourselves.
Ege. With duty, and desire, we follow you.

[Exeunt THES. HIP. EGE. DEM. and train. Lys. How now, my love? Why is your cheek so pale?

- And, Lysander, I have a widow aunt, a dowager
Of great revenue, and she hath no child;
From Athens is her house remote seven leagues;
And she respects me as her only son.
There, gentle Hermia, may I marry thee;
And to that place the sharp Athenian law
Cannot pursue us: If thou lov'st me then,
Steal forth thy father's house to-morrow night;
And in the wood, a league without the town,
Where I did meet thee once with Helena,
To do observance to a morn of May,
There will I stay for thee.

How chance the roses there do fade so fast?

Her. Belike for want of rain; which I could well
Beteein them from the tempest of mine eyes.

Lys. Ah me! for ought that ever I could read,
Could ever hear by tale or history,
The course of true love never did run smooth:
But, either it was different in blood; va

Her. O cross! too high to be enthrall'd to low!
Lys. Or else raisgraffed, in respect of years;
Her. O spite! too old to be engag'd to young!
Lys. Or else it stood upon the choice of friends:
Her. O hell! to choose love by another's eye!
Lys. Or, if there were a sympathy in choice,
War, death, or sickness did lay siege to it;
Making it momentary as a sound,
Swift as a shadow, short as any dream;
Brief as the lightning in the collied night,
That, in a spleen, unfolds both heaven and earth,
And ere a man hath power to say, - Behold!
The jaws of darkness do devour it up:
So quick bright things come to confusion.

t

-

Her. If then true lovers have been ever cross'd, It stands as an edíct in destiny:

Then let us teach our trial patience,

Because it is a customary cross;

As due to love, as thoughts and dreams, and sighs,
Wishes, and tears, poor fancy's followers.

Lys. A good persuasion; therefore, hear me
Hermia.

Her.

My good Lysander !
I swear to thee by Cupid's strongest bow;
By his best arrow with the golden head;
By the simplicity of Venus' doves;

By that which knitteth souls, and prospers loves ;
And by that fire which burn'd the Carthage queen,

;

When the false Trojan under sail was seen;
By all the vows that ever men have broke,
In number more than ever women spoke;
In that same place thou hast appointed me,
To-morrow truly will I meet with thee.
Lys. Keep promise, love: Look, here comes
Helena.

Enter HELENA.

Her. God speed fair Helena! Whither away ? Hel. Call you me fair? that fair again unsay. Demetrius loves your fair : O happy fair! Your eyes are lode-stars; and your tongue's sweet air

More tuneable than lark to shepherd's ear,

When wheat is green, when hawthorn buds appear.
Sickness is catching; O, were favour so!
Your's would I catch, fair Hermia, ere I go;
My ear should catch your voice, my eye your eye,
My tongue should catch your tongue's sweet
melody.
maladie

Were the world mine, Demetrius being bated,,
The rest I'll give to be to you translated.
O, teach me how you look; and with what art
You sway the motion of Demetrius' heart.

Her. I frown upon him, yet he loves me still. Hel. O, that your frowns would teach my smiles

such skill!

Her. I give him curses, yet he gives me love. Hel. O, that my prayers could such affection move!

Her. The more I hate, the more he follows me.
Hel. The more I love, the more he hateth me.
Her. His folly, Helena, is no fault of mine.
Hel. None. but your beauty; 'Would that fault
were mine!

Her. Take comfort; he no more shall see my face;
Lysander and myself will fly this place.
Before the time I did Lysander see,
Seem'd Athens as a paradise to me:

O then, what graces in my love do dwell, That he hath turn'd a heaven unto hell!

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Lys. Helen, to you our minds we will unfold: To-morrow night when Phoebe doth behold Her silver visage in the wat'ry glass, Decking with liquid pearl the bladed grass, (A time that lovers' flights doth still conceal,) Through Athen's gates have we devis'd to steal.

Her. And in the wood, where often you and I Upon faint primrose beds were wont to lie, Emptying our bosoms of their counsel sweet; There my Lysander and myself shall meet: And thence, from Athens, turn away our eyes, To seek new friends and stranger companies. Farewell, sweet playfellow; pray thou for us, And good luck grant thee thy Demetrius! Keep word, Lysander: we must starve our sight From lovers' food, till morrow deep midnight. [Exit HERM. Lys. I will, my Hermia. Helena adieu : As you on him, Demetrius dote on you!

[Exit Lys.

Hel. How happy some, o'er other some can be!
Through Athens I am thought as fair as she.
But what of that? Demetrius thinks not so;
He will not know what all but he do know.
And as he errs, doting on Hermia's eyes,
So I, admiring of his qualities.

Things base and vile, holding no quantity,
Love can transpose to form and dignity.

Love looks not with the eyes, but with the mind;
And therefore is wing'd Cupid painted blind.
Nor hath love's mind of any judgement taste;
Wings, and no eyes, figure unheedy haste :
And therefore is love said to be a child,
Because in choice he is so oft beguil'd.
As waggish boys in game themselves forswear,
So the boy Love is perjur'd every where:
For ere Demetrius look'd on Hermia's eyne,
He hail'd down oaths, that he was only mine;
And when this hail some heat from Hermia felt,
So he dissolv'd, and showers of oaths did melt.
I will go tell him of fair Hermia's flight:
Then to the wood will he, to-morrow night,
Pursue her; and for this intelligence
If I have thanks, it is a dear expence :
But herein mean I to enrich my pain,
To have his sight thither and back again.

[Exit.

The same. A Room in a Cottage.

Enter SNUG, BOTTOM, FLUTE, SNOUT, QUINCE, and STARVELING.

SCENE II.

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Quin. Is all our company here?

Bot. You were best to call them generally, man by man, according to the scrip...

Quin. Here is the scroll of every man's name, which is thought fit, through all Athens, to play in our interlude before the duke and duchess, on his wedding-day at night.

Bot. First, good Peter Quince, say what the play treats on; then read the names of the actors; and so grow to a point.

Quin. Marry, our play is · The most lamentable comedy, and most cruel death of Pyramus and Thisby.

Bot. A very good piece of work, I assure you, and a merry. Now, good Peter Quince, call forth your actors by the scroll: Masters, spread yourselves. Quin. Answer, as I call you.. Nick Bottom, the

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weaver.

Bot. Ready. Name what part I am for, and proceed.

Quin. You, Nick Bottom, are set down for Py

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Bot. I grant you, friends, if that you should fright the ladies out of their wits, they would have no more discretion but to hang us: but I will aggravate my voice so, that I will roar you as gently as any sucking dove; I will roar you an 'twere any nightingale.

Quin. You can play no part but Pyramus: for Pyramus is a sweet-faced man; a proper man, as one shall see in a summer's day; a most lovely, gentleman-like man; therefore you must needs play Pyramus.

Bot. Well, I will undertake it. What beard were I best to play it in?

Quin. Robin Starveling, the tailor.

Quin. Why, what you will.

Star. Here, Peter Quince.

Bot. I will discharge it in either your straw

Quin. Robin Starveling, you must play Thisby's coloured beard, your orange-tawny beard, your purmother. Tom Snout, the tinker. ple-in-grain beard, or your French-crown-colour Snout. Here, Peter Quince. beard, your perfect yellow.

Quin. You, Pyramus's father; myself, Thisby's father; Snug, the joiner, you, the lion's part: — and, I hope, here is a play fitted.

Snug. Have you the lion's part written? pray you, if it be, give it me, for I am slow of study. Quin. You may do it extempore, for it is nothing but roaring.

Quin. Some of your French crowns have no hair at all, and then you will play bare-faced.—But, masters; here are your parts: and I am to entreat you, request you, and desire you, to con them by tomorrow night; and meet me in the palace wood, a mile without the town, by moon-light; there will we rehearse for if we meet in the city, we shall be dog'd with company, and our devices known. In the mean time I will draw a bill of properties, such as our play wants. I pray you fail me not.

Bot. We will meet; and there we may rehearse more obscenely, and courageously. Take pains; be perfect; adieu.

Quin. At the duke's oak we meet.

Bot. Enough; Hold, or cut bow-strings. [Exeunt.

Flu. What is Thisby? a wandering knight?
Quin. It is the lady that Pyramus must love.
Flu. Nay, faith, let me not play a woman; I
have a beard coming.

Quin. That's all one; you shall play it in a mask, and you may speak as small as you will.

Bot. An I may hide my face, let me play Thisby too: I'll speak in a monstrous little voice ; — Thisne, Thisne, Ah, Pyramus, my lover dear; thy Thisby dear! and lady dear!

Quin. No, no; you must play Pyramus, and, Flute, you Thisby.

Bot. Well, proceed.

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Bot. Let me play the lion too: I will roar, that I will do any man's heart good to hear me; I will roar, that I will make the duke say, Let him roar again, Let him roar again.

Quin. An you should do it too terribly, you would fright the duchess and the ladies, that they would shriek; and that were enough to hang us all. All. That would hang us every mother's son.

SCENE I.
Enter a Fairy at one door, and Puck at another.
Puck. How now, spirit! whither wander you?
Fai. Over hill, over dale,

Thorough bush, thorough briar, $

Over park, over pale,

ACT II.

A Wood near Athens.

Thorough flood, thorough fire,
I do wander every where,
Swifter than the moones sphere;
And I serve the fairy queen,
To dew her orbs upon the green:
The cowslips tall her pensioners be;
In their gold coats spots you see;
Those be rubies, fairy favours,

In those freckles live their savours:
must go seek some dew-drops here,
And hang a pearl in every cowslip's ear.
Farewell, thou lob of spirits, I'll be gone;
Our
queen and all our elves come here anon.
Puck. The king doth keep his revels here to-

night;

Take heed, the queen come not within his sight.
For Oberon is passing fell and wrath,
Because that she, as her attendant, hath
A lovely boy, stol'n from an Indian king ;
She never had so sweet a changeling:
And jealous Oberon would have the child
Knight of his train, to trace the forests wild:
But she, perforce, withholds the loved boy,
Crowns him with flowers, and makes him all her joy:

And now they never meet in grove, or green,
By fountain clear, or spangled star-light sheen,
But they do square; that all their elves, for fear,
Creep into acorn cups, and hide them there.

Fai. Either I mistake your shape and making
quite,

Or else you are that shrewd and knavish sprite,
Call'd Robin Good-fellow: are you not he,
That fright the maidens of the villagery ;
Skim milk; and sometimes labour in the quer,
And bootless make the breathless housewife churn;
And sometime make the drink to bear no barm;
Mislead night-wanderers, laughing at their harm?
Those that Hobgoblin call you, and sweet Puck,
You do their work, and they shall have good luck :
Are not you he?

Puck.

wa

To

Thou speak'st aright;
I am that merry wanderer of the night.
I jest to Oberon, and make him smile,
When I a fat and bean-fed horse beguile,
Neighing in likeness of a filly foal
And sometime lurk I in a gossip's bowl,
In very likeness of a roasted crab;
And, when she drinks, against her lips I bob,
And on her wither'd dew-lap pour the ale.
The wisest aunt, telling the saddest tale,
Sometime for three-foot stool mistaketh me;
Then slip I from her bum, down topples she,
And tailor cries, and falls into a cough;

And then the whole quire hold their hips, and

loffe;

ampo final,

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