Imagini ale paginilor
PDF
ePub

Sickness is catching; 0, 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.
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.

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.

Hel. O, that your frowns would teach my smiles such Quin. Marry, our play is-The most lamentable coskill!

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:
Othen, what graces in my love do dwell,
That he hath turn'd a heaven into a hell!
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 Athens' gates have we devised 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 Hermia.

Lys. I will, my Hermia.-Helena, adieu:
As you on him, Demetrius dote on you! [Exit Lysander.
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 aud 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 judgment 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 expense:
But herein mean I to enrich my pain,

To have his sight thither, and back again.

[Exit.

SCENE II.-The same. Aroom in a cottage. Enter SNUG, BOTTOM, FLUTE, SNOUT, QUINCE, and STARVELING.

Quin. Is all our company here?

medy, 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 ac-
tors by the scroll!—Masters, spread yourselves!
Quin. Answer as I call you.-Nick Bottom, the weaver.
Bot. Ready. Name what part I am for, and proceed.
Quin. You, Nick Bottom, are set down for Pyramus.
Bot. What is Pyramus? a lover, or a tyrant?
Quin. A lover, that kills himself most gallantly for

[blocks in formation]

This was lofty!-Now name the rest of the players!-
This is Ercles' vein, a tyrant's vein; a lover is more
condoling.

Quin. Francis Flute, the bellows-mender.
Flute. Here, Peter Quince.

Quin. You must take Thisby on you.
Flute. What is Thisby? a wandering knight?
Quin. It is the lady, that Pyramus must love.
Flute. 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!

Quin. Robin Starveling, the tailor.

Star. Here, Peter Quince.

Quin. Robin Starveling, you must play Thisby's mother.-Tom Snout, the tinker.

Snout. Here, Peter Quince.

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.

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 too hang us all."

[ocr errors]

All. That would hang us every mother's son. And bootless make the breathless housewife churn,
Bot. I grant you, friends, if that you should fright And sometime make the drink to bear no barm,
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 Pyra-
mus is a sweet-faced man; a proper man, as one shall
seeina summer's day; a most lovely, gentleman-like
man; therefore you must needs play Pyramus.
Bot. Well, I will undertake it. What beard were
best to play it in?

Quin. Why, what you will.

I

Bot. I will discharge it in either your straw-coloured beard, your orange-tawny beard, your purple-in-grain beard, or your French-crown-coloured beard, your perfect yellow.

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 to-morrow night; and meet me in the palace wood, a mile without the town, by moonlight; 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.

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?

[ocr errors]

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.

Puck. 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 Ifrom her bum, down topples she,
And tailor cries, and falls into a cough;
And then the whole quire hold their hips, and loffe;
And waxen in their mirth, and neeze, and swear,
A merrier hour was never wasted there.—
But room, Faery, here comes Oberon,
Fai. And here my mistress :- 'would that he were
gone!
SCENE II.

Enter OBERON, at one door, with his train, and
TITANIA, at another, with hers.

Obe. Ill met by moon-light, proud Titania!
Tita. What, jealous Oberon! Fairy, skip hence;
I have forsworn his bed and company.

Bot. Enough; hold, or cut bow-strings. [Exeunt. Obe. Tarry, rash wanton! Am not I thy lord?

A CT II.

SCENE I-A wood near Athens.

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 brier,
Over park, over pale,

Thorough flood, thorough fire,
I do wander every where,
Swifter than the moone's 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:
I 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 her 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 quern,

Tita. Then I must be thy Lady: but I know,
When thou hast stol'n away from fairy land,
And in the shape of Corin sat all day,
Playing on pipes of corn, and versing love,
To amorous Phillida. Why art thou here,
Come from the farthest steep of India?
But that, forsooth, the bouncing Amazon,
Your buskin'd mistress, and your warrior love,
ToTheseus must be wedded; and you come
To give their bed joy and prosperity.

Obe. How canst thou thus, for shame, Titania
Glance at my credit with Hippolyta,

Knowing I know thy love to Theseus?

Didst thou not lead him through the glimmering night
From Perigenia, whom he ravished?

And make him with fair Aeglé break his faith,
With Ariadne, and Antiopa?

Tita. These are the forgeries of jealousy:
And never, since the middle summer's spring,
Met we on hill, in dale, forest, or mead,
By paved fountain, or by rushy brook,
Or on the beached margent of the sea,
To dance our ringlets to the whistling wind,
But with thy brawls thou hast disturb'd our sport.
Therefore the winds, piping to us in vain,
As in revenge, have suck'd up from the sea
Contagious fogs; which falling in the land,
Have every pelting river made so proud,
That they have overborne their continents:
The ox hath therefore stretch'd his yoke in vain,
The ploughman lost his sweat; and the green corn
Hath rotted, ere his youth attain'd a beard:
The fold stands empty in the drowned field;
The crows are fatted with the murrain flock;
The nine men's morris is fill'd up with mud;
And the quaint mazes in the wanton green,
For lack of tread, are undistinguishable:
The human mortals want their winter here;
No night is now with hymn or carol blest :-
Therefore the moon, the governess of floods,
Pale in her anger, washes all the air,

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small]

That rheumatic diseases do abound:
And thorough this distemperature, we see
The seasons alter; hoary-headed frosts
Fall in the fresh lap of the crimson rose;
And on old Hyems chin, and icy crown,
An odorous chaplet of sweet summer buds

Is, as in mockery, set: the spring, the summer,
The chilling autumn, angry winter, change
Their wonted liveries; and the 'mazed world,
By their increase, now knows not, which is which:
And this same progeny of evils comes
From our debate, from our dissention;
We are their parents and original.

Obe. Do you amend it then; it lies in you!
Why should Titania cross her Oberon?
I do but beg a little changeling boy,
To be my benchman.

Tita. Set your heart at rest,

The fairy land buys not the child of me.
His mother was a vot'ress of my order:
And, in the spiced Indian air, by night,
Full often hath she gossip'd by my side,
And sat with me on Neptune's yellow sands,
Marking the embarked traders on the flood;
When we have laugh'd to see the sails conceive,
And grow big-bellied, with the wanton wind:
Which she, with pretty and with swimming gait,
(Following her womb, then rich with my young squire,)
Would imitate; and sail upon the land,
To fetch me trifles, and return again,
As from a voyage, rich with merchandize.
But she, being mortal, of that boy did die ;
And, for her sake, I do rear up the boy;
And, for her sake, I will not part with him.
Obe. How long within this wood intend you stay?
Tita. Perchance, till after Theseus' wedding-day!
If you will patiently dance in our round,
And see our moon-light revels, go with us;
If not, shun me, and I will spare your haunts.
Obe. Give me that boy, and I will go with thee.
Tita. Not for thy kingdom.-Fairies, away!
We shall chide down-right, if I longer stay.

[Exeunt Titania, andher train.
Obe. Well, go thy way! thou shalt not from this grove,
Till I torment thee for this injury.—
My gentle Puck, come hither! Thou remember'st
Since once I sat upon a promontory,
And heard a mermaid, on a dolphin's back,
Uttering such dulcet and harmonious breath,
That the rude sea grew civil at her song,

And certain stars shot madly from their spheres,
To hear the sea-maid's music.

Puck. I remember.

Obe. That very time I saw, (but thou could'st not,)
Flying between the cold moon and the earth,
Cupid all arm'd: a certain aim he took
Ata fair vestal, throned by the west;

And loos'd his love-shaft smartly from his bow,
As it should pierce a hundred thousand hearts:
But I might see young Cupid's fiery shaft
Quench'd in the chaste beams of the wat'ry moon;
And the imperial vot'ress passed on,
In maiden meditation, fancy-free.
Yet mark'd I, where the bolt of Cupid fell:
It fell upon a little western flower,-
Before, milk-white, now purple with love's wound,-
And maidens call it, love-in-idleness.
Fetch me that flower, the herb I show'd thee once!
The juice of it on sleeping eye-lids laid,
Will make or man or woman madly dote
Upon the next live creature that it secs.
Fetch me this herb; and be thou here again,
Ere the leviathan can swim a league!

Puck. I'll put a girdle round about the earth
In forty minutes.

Obe. Having once this juice,

[Exit Puck.

I'll watch Titania, when she is asleep,
And drop the liquor of it in her eyes:
The next thing then she waking looks upon,
(Be it on lion, bear, or wolf, or
or bull,

On meddling monkey, or on busy ape,)
She shall pursue it with the soul of love.
And ere I take this charm off from her sight,
(As I can take it, with another herb,)
I'll make her render up her page to me.-
But who comes here? I am invisible;
And I will over-hear their conference.

Enter DEMETRIUS, HELENA following him.
Dem. I love thee not, therefore pursue me not!
Where is Lysander, and fai: Hermia?
The one I'll slay, the other slayeth me.
Thou told'st me, they were stol'n into this wood,
And here am I, and wood within this wood,
Because I cannot meet with Hermia.
Hence, get thee gone, and follow me no more!
Hel. You draw me, you hard-hearted adamant;
But yet you draw not iron, for my heart
Is true as steel! Leave you your power to draw,
And I shall have no power to follow you!
Dem. Do I entice you? Do I speak you fair?
Or, rather, do I not in plainest truth
Tell you-I do not, nor I cannot love you?
Hel. And even for that do I love you the more.
I am your spaniel; and, Demetrius,
The more you beat me, I will fawn on you.
Use me but as your spaniel, spurn me, strike me,
Neglect me, lose me; only give me leave,
Unworthy as I am, to follow you!

What worser place can I beg in your love,
(And yet a place of high respect with me,)
Than to be used, as you use your dog?

Dem. Tempt not too much the hatred of my spirit;
For I am sick, when I do look on thee.

Hel. And I am sick, when I look not on you.
Dem. You do impeach your modesty too much,
To leave the city, and commit yourself
Into the hands of one, that loves you not;
To trust the opportunity of night,
And the ill counsel of a desert place,
With the rich worth of your virginity.
Hel. Your virtue is my privilege for that.
It is not night, when I do see your face,
Therefore I think I am not in the night:
Nor doth this wood lack worlds of company;
For you, in my respect, are all the world.
Then how can it be said, I am alone,
When all the world is here to look on me?
Dem. I'll run from thee, and hide me in the brakes,
And leave thee to the mercy of wild beasts.
Hel. The wildest hath not such a heart as you.
Run when you will, the story shall be chang'd;
Apollo flies, and Daphne holds the chase;
The dove pursues the griffin; the mild hind
Makes speed to catch the tiger. Bootless speed!
When cowardice pursues, and valour flies.
Dem. I will not stay thy questions; let me go:
Or, if thou follow me, do not believe
But I shall do thee mischief in the wood!
Hel. Ay, in the temple, in the town, the field,
You do me mischief. Fye, Demetrius !
Your wrongs do set a scandal on my sex:
We cannot fight for love, as men may do ;
We should be woo'd, and were not made to woo.
I'll follow thee, and make a heaven of hell,
To die upon the hand I love so well.

[Exeunt Dem. and Hel.

Obe. Fare thee well, nymph: ere he do leave this

grove,

Thou shalt fly him, and he shall seek thy love.-
Re-enter PUCK.

Hast thou the flower there? Welcome, wanderer!
Puck. Ay, there it is.

Obe. I pray thee, give it me.

I know a bank, whereon the wild thyme blows,
Where ox-lips and the nodding violet grows;
Quite over-canopied with lush woodbine,
With sweet musk-roses, and with eglantine:
There sleeps Titania, some time of the night,
Lull'd in these flowers with dances and delight;
And there the snake throws her enamell'd skin,
Weed wide enough to wrap a fairy in:

And with the juice of this I'll streak her eyes,
And make her full of hatefl fantasies.

Take thou some of it, and seek through this grove:
A sweet Athenian lady is in love
With a disdainful youth: anoint his eyes;
But do it, when the next thing he espies
May be the lady: thou shalt know the man
By the Athenian garments he hath on.
Effect it with some care, that he may prove
More foud on her, than she upon her love:
And look, thou meet me ere the first cock crow!
Puck. Fear not, my lord, your servant shall do so.

[Exeunt.

Lusand

Enter LYSANDER and HERMIA. Lys. Fair love, you faint with wandering in the wood; And, to speak troth, I have forgot our way; We'll rest us, Hermia, if you think it good, And tarry for the comfort of the day. Her. Be it so, Lysander: find you out a bed, For I upon this bank will rest my head. Lys. One turf shall serve as pillow for us both; One heart, one bed, two bosoms, and one troth. Her. Nay, good Lysander; for my sake, my dear, Lie further off yet, do not lie so near.

SCENE III.-Another part of the wood.
Enter TITANIA, with her train.
Tita. Come, now a roundel, and a fairy song!
Then, for the third part of a minute, hence!
Some, to kill cankers in the musk-rose buds;
Some, war with rear-mice for their leathern wings,
To make my small elves coats; and some, keep back
The clamorous owl, that nightly hoots, and wonders
At our quaint spirits! Sing me now asleep;
Then to your offices, and let me rest!

SONG.

1 Fai. You spotted snakes, with double tongue, Thorny hedge-hogs, be not seen; Newts, and blind-worms, do no wrong; Come not near our fairy queen.

CHORES.

Philomel, with melody,
Sing in our sweet lullaby:

Lulla, lulla, lullaby; lulla, lulla, lullaby:
Never harm, nor spell nor charm,
Come our lovely lady nigh;

So, good night, with lullaby.

II.

2 Fai. Weaving spiders, come not here!

Hence, you long-legg'd spinners, hence!
Beetles black, approach not near!
Worm, nor snail, do no offence!

CHORUS.

Philomel, with melody, etc.

1 Fai. Hence, away! now all is well: One, aloof, stand centinel.

Lys. O, take the sense, sweet, of my innocence;
Love takes the meaning, in love's conference.
I mean, that my heart unto your's is knit;
So that but one heart we can make of it:
Two bosoms interchained with an oath;
So then, two bosoms, and a single troth.
Then, by your side no bed-room me deny;
For, lying so, Hermia, I do not lie.

Her. Lysander riddles very prettily.—
Now much beshrew my manners and my pride,
If Hermia meant to say, Lysander lied.
But, gentle friend, for love and courtesy
Lie further off; in human modesty
Such separation, as, may well be said,
Becomes a virtuous bachelor and a maid:

So far be distant; and good night, sweet friend:
Thy love ne'er alter, till thy sweet life end!
Lys. Amen, amen to that fair prayer say I;
And then end life, when I end loyalty!
Here is my bed: Sleep give thee all his rest!
Her. With half that wish the wisher's eyes be press'd!

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]

[They sleep.

[merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors]

Enter Рuck.
Puck. Through the forest have I gone,
But Athenian found I none,
On whose eyes I might approve
This flower's force in stirring love.
Night and silence! who is here?
Weeds of Athens he doth wear:
This is he, my master said,
Despised the Athenian maid;
And here the maiden, sleeping sound,
On the dank and dirty ground.
Pretty soul! she durst not lie
Near this lack-love, kill-courtesy.

Churl, upon thy eyes I throw
All the power this charm doth owe:
When thou wak'st, let love forbid
Sleep his seat on thy eye-lid.

So awake, when I am gone;

For I must now to Oberon.

[Exit.

Enter DEMETRIUS and HELENA, running.

Hel. Stay, though thou kill me, sweet Demetrius!
Dem. I charge thee, hence, and do not haunt me thus!
Hel. O, wilt thou darkling leave me? do not so.
Dem. Stay, on thy peril! I alone will go.

[Exit Demetrius.
Hel. O, I am out of breath in this fond chase!
The more my prayer, the lesser is my grace.
Happy is Hermia, wheresoe'er she lies;

[Exeunt Fairies. Titania sleeps. For she hath blessed and attractive eyes.

Enter OBERon.

Obe. What thou seest, when thou dost wake,
[Squeezes the flower on Titania's eye-lids.

Do it for thy true love take;
Love, and languish for his sake:
Be it ounce, or cat, or bear,
Pard, or boar with bristled hair,
In thy eye that shall appear
When thou wak'st, it is thy dear;
Wake, when some vile thing is near.

How came her eyes so bright? Not with salt tears:
If so, my eyes are oftener wash'd than hers.
No, no, I am as ugly as a bear;

For beasts that meet me, run away for fear:
Therefore, no marvel, though Demetrius!
Do, as a monster, fly my presence thus!
What wicked and dissembling glass of mine
Made me compare with Hermia's sphery eyne?-
But who is here?-Lysander! on the ground!
[Exit. Dead? or asleep? I see no blood, no wound :—

Lysander, if you live, good sir, awakel!
Lys. And run through fire I will, for thy sweet sake,
[Waking.

Transparent Helena! Nature here shows art,
That through thy bosom makes me see thy heart.
Where is Demetrius? O, how fit a word
Is that vile name, to perish on my sword!
Hel. Do not say so, Lysander; say not so!

and Thisby, that will never please. First, Pyramus
must draw a sword to kill himself; which the ladies
cannot abide. How answer you that?
Snout. By'rlakin, a parlous fear.

Ster. I believe, we must leave the killing out, when all is done.

Bot. Not a whit: I have a device to make all well. Write me a prologue: and let the prologue seem to say,

What though he love your Hermia? Lord, what we will do no harm with our swords; and that Pyrathough?

Yet Hermia still loves you: then be content!
Lys. Content with Hermia? No! I do repent
The tedious minutes I with her have spent.
Not Hermia, but Helena I love:
Who will not change a raven for a dove?
The will of man is by his reason sway'd;
And reason says, you are the worthier maid.
Things growing are not ripe until their season:
So I, being young, till now ripe not to reason;
And touching now the point of human skill,
Reason becomes the marshall to my will,
And leads me to your eyes; where I o'erlook
Love's stories, written in love's richest book.
Hel. Wherefore was I to this keen mockery born?
When, at your hands, did I deserve this scorn?
Is't not enough, is't not enough, young man,
That I did never, no, nor never can,
Deserve a sweet look from Demetrius' eye,
But you must flout my insufficiency?

Good troth, you do me wrong, good sooth, you do,

In such disdainful manner me to woo.
But fare you well: perforce I must confess,
I thought you lord of more true gentleness.
O, that a lady, of one man refus'd,
Should, of another, therefore be abus'd!
Lys.She sees not Hermia:-Hermia,sleep
And never may'st thou come Lysander near!
For, as a surfeit of the sweetest things
The deepest loathing to the stomach brings;
Or, as the heresies, that men do leave,

Are hated most of those, they did deceive;

So thou, my surfeit, and my heresy,

Of all be hated; but the most of me!

[Exit. thou there;

And all my powers, address your love and might,
To honour Helen, and to be her knight!

[Exit. Her. [Starting.] Help me, Lysander, help me! do thy best,

To pluck this crawling serpent from my breast!
Ah me, for pity!-what a dream was here!
Lysander, look, how I do quake with fear!
Methought a serpent eat my heart away,
And you sat smiling at his cruel prey:-
Lysander! what, remov'd? Lysander! lord!
What, out of hearing? gone? no sound, no word?
Alack, where are you? speak, an if you hear;
Speak, of all loves; I swoon almost with fear!
No?-then I well perceive you are not nigh:
Either death, or you, I'll find immediately.

А СТ III.

[Exit.

SCENE I.—The same. The Queen of Fairies lying
asleep.
Enter QUINCE, SNUG, BOTTOM, FLUTE, SNOUT, and
STARVELING.

Bot. Are we all met?

Quin. Pat, pat; and here's a marvellous convenient place for our rehearsal. This green plot shall be our stage, this hawthorn brake our tyring house; and we will do it in action, as we will do it before the duke. Bot. Peter Quince,

Quin. What say'st thou, bully Bottom?

mus is not killed indeed: and, for the more better assurance, tell them, that I Pyramus am not Pyramus, but Bottom the weaver. This will put them out of fear. Quin. Well, we will have such a prologue; and it shall be written in eight and six.

Bot. No, make it two more; let it be written in eight and eight.

Snout. Will not the ladies be afeard of the lion?
Star. I fear it, I promise you.

Bot. Masters, you ought to consider with yourselves: to bring in, God shield us! a lion among ladies, is a most dreadful thing; for there is not a more fearful wild-fowl than your lion, living; and we ought to look to it.

Snout. Therefore another prologue must tell, he is not a lion.

Bot. Nay, you must name his name, and half his face must be seen through the lion's neck; and he himself must speak through, saying thus, or to the same defect: Ladies, or fair ladies, I would wish you, or, I would request you, or, I would entreat you, not to fear, not to tremble; my life for yours. If you think I come hither as a lion, it were pity of my life: no, I am no such thing; I am a man as other men are. And there, indeed, let him name his name; and tell them plainly, he is Snug the joiner.

Quin. Well, it shall be so. But there is two hard things; that is, to bring the moon-light into a chamber: for you know, Pyramus and Thisby meet by moonlight.

Snug. Doth the moon shine that night we play our play?

Bot. A calendar, a calendar! look in the almanack; find out moon-shine, find out moon-shine!

Quin. Yes, it doth shine that night.

Bot. Why, then you may leave a casement of the great chamber window, where we play, open; and the moon may shine in at the casement.

Quin. Ay; or else one must come in with a bush of thorns and a lanthorn, and say, he comes to disfigure, or to present, the person of moon-shine. Then, there is another thing: we must have a wall in the great chamber; for Pyramus and Thisby, says the story, did talk through the chink of a wall.

Snug. You never can bring in a wall.-What say Bottom?

you, Bot. Some man or other must present wall: and let him have some plaster, or some lome, or some rough-cast about him, to signify wall; or let him hold his fingers thus, and through that cranny shall Pyramus and Thisby whisper.

down, every mother's son, and rehearse your parts! Quin. If that may be, then all is well. Come, sit Pyramus, you begin: when you have spoken your speech,enter into that brake; and so every one according to his cue.

Enter Puck behind.

Puck. What hempen home-spuns have we swag-
So near the cradle of the fairy queen?
gering here,
What, a play toward? I'll be an auditor;
An actor too, perhaps, ifI see cause.
Quin. Speak, Pyramus!-Thisby, stand forth!

Bot. There are things in this comedy of Pyramus Pyr. Thisby, the flowers of odious savours sweet,—

« ÎnapoiContinuă »