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Is little Cupid's crafty arrow made,
Enter Beatrice, running towards the Arbour.
Ursu. The pleasant'st angling is to see the fish
Hero. Then go we near her, that her ear lose nothing
Ursu. But are you sure, I'hat Benedick loves Beatrice so intirely? Hero. So says the Prince, and my new-trothed lord. Ursu. And did they bid you tell her of it, Madam?
Hero. They did intreat me to acquaint her of it;
Ursu. Why did you so? doth not the Gentleman
Hero. O God of love! I know, he doth deserve
Nor take no shape nor project of affection,
Ursu. Sure, I think so;
Hero. Why, you speak truth. I never yet saw man, How wise, how noble, young, how rarely featur'd, But she would spell him backward; if fair-facd, 'She'd swear, the gentleman should be her sister; « ? If black, why,
Nature, drawing of an antick, · Made a foul blot; if tall, a launce ill-headed; • 3 If low, an Aglet very vilely cut; • If speaking, why, a vane blown with all winds; . If Glent, why a block moved with none.' So turns she every man the wrong side out, And never gives to truth and virtue That, Which simpleness and merit purchaseth.
Ursu. Sure, sure, such carping is not commendable. Hero. No; for to be so odd, and from all fashions, 2 If black, why, Nature, drawing of an antick, Made a foul blot;-] The antick was a buffoon character in the old English farces, with a blacked face and a patch-work habit. What I would observe from hence is, that the name of antick or antique, given to this character, Thews that the people had some traditional ideas of its being borrowed from the ancient mimes, who are thus described by Apuleius, mimi centunculo, fuligine faciem obdukti.
3 If low, an Agat very vilely cut ;] But why an agat, if low ? For what likeness between a little man and an agat? The ancients, indeed, used this stone to cut upon; but very exquisitely. I make no question but the poet wrote;
an Aglet very vilely cut ; An aglet was the tagg of those points, formerly so much in fashion. These taggs were either of gold, filver, or brass, according to the quality of the wearer; and were commonly in the shape of little images; or at least had a head cut at the extremiiy. The French call them aiguillettes. Mazeray, speaking of Henry IIld's forrow for the death of the princess of Conti, says, – portant meme sur ses aiguillettes de petites tetes de Mort. And as a tall man is before compar'd to a Launce ill-headed; so, by the same figure, a little Man is very aptly liken'd to an Aglet ill-cut.
As Beatrice is, cannot be commendable
Ursu. Yet tell her of it; hear what she will say.
Hero. No, rather I will go to Benedick,
Ursu. O, do not do your Cousin such a wrong.
Hero. He is the only man of Italy,
Ursu. I pray you, be not angry with me, Madam, Speaking my fancy; Signior Benedick, For shape, for bearing, argument and valour, Goes foremost in report through Italy.
Hero. Indeed, he hath an excellent good name.
Ursu. His excellence did earn it, ere he had it. When are you marry'd, Madam?
Hero. Why, every day; to morrow; come, go in, I'll shew thee some attires, and have thy counsel Which is the best to furnish me to morrow.
Ursu. She's lim’d, I warant you; we have caught her, Madam.
Hero. If it prove so, then loving goes by haps ; Some Cupids kill with arrows, Some with traps.
Stand I condemn’d for Pride and Scorn so much? Contempt, farewel! and maiden pride, adieu!
No glory lives behind the back of such. And, Benedick, love on, I will requite thee;
Taming my wild heart to thy loving hand; If thou dost love, thy kindness shall incite thee
To bind our loves up in a holy band. For others say, thou doft deserve; and I Believe it better than reportingly.
Leonato's House. Enter Don Pedro, Claudio, Benedick and Leonato.
DO but ftay 'till your marriage be con
summate, and then go I toward Arragon. Claud. I'll bring you thither my lord, if you'll vouchsafe me.
Pedro. Nay, That would be as great a foil in the new gloss of your marriage, as to fhew a child his new coat and forbid him to wear it. I will only be bold with Benedick for his company; for, from the crown of his head to the foale of his foot, he is all mirth; he hath twice or thrice cut Cupid's bow-string, and the little hangman dare not shoot at him; he hath a heart as found as a bell, and his congue is the clapper ; for what his heart thinks, his tongue speaks.
Bene. Gallants, I am not as I have been. Leon. So say I; methinks, you are fadder. Claud. I hope, he is in love. 4 What fire is in my ears?--) Alluding to a proverbial faying of the common people, that their ears burn when others are talking of them.
Pedro. Hang him, truant, there's no true drop of blood in him, to be truly couch'd with love; if he be fad, he wants mony:
Bene. I have the tooth-ach.
Claud. You must hang it first, and draw it afterwards.
Pedro. What? sigh for the tooth-ach!
Bene. Well, every one can master a grief but he that has it.
Claud. Yet say I, he is in love.
Pedro. “ There is no appearance of fancy in him, s6 unless it be a fancy that he hath to strange dis“ guises, as to be a Dutch man to day, a French man “ to morrow; 5 or in the shape of two countries “ at once, a German from the waste downward, all “ Nops; and a Spaniard from the hip upward, no 66 doublet :" Unless he have a fancy to this foolery, as it appears he hath, he is no fool for fancy, as you would have it to appear he is.
Claud. If he be not in love with some woman, there is no believing old signs; he brushes his hat o'mornings; what should that bode ? Pedro. Hath any man seen him at the barber's ?
Claud. No, but the barber's man hath been seen with him; and the old ornament of his cheek hath already stuft tennis-balls.
Leon. Indeed, he looks younger than he did by the loss of a beard.
Pedro. Nay, he rubs himself with civet ; can you smell him out by that?
Claud. That's as much as to say, the sweet youth's in love.
Pedro. The greatest note of it is his melancholy. 5 Edit. 1600. Mr. Pope.