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(The sealing-day betwixt my love and me, I have a widow aunt, a dowager
Of great revenue, and she hath no child:
From Athens is her house remote seven leagues;
And to that place the sharp Athenian law
Cannot pursue us: If thoni lov'st me then, Der Relent, sweet Hermia ;-And, Lysander, Steal forth thy father's house to-morrow night; yield
And in the wood, a league without the town,
Where I did meet thee once with Helena,
My good Lysander ! love,
I swear to thee, by Cupid's strongest bow;
By that whích knitteth souls, and prospers loves;
queen, My fortunes every way as fairly rank'd, When the false Trojan under sail was seen; If not with vantage, as Demetrius';
By all the vows that ever men have broke, And, which is more than all these boasts can be, In number more than ever women spoke ;I am belov'd of beauteous Hermia:
In that same place thou hast appointed me, Why should not I then prosecute my right? To-morrow truly will I meet with thee. Demetrius, I'll avouch it to his head,
Lys. Keep promise, love: Look, here comes
Her. God speed fair Helena! Whither away?
Your eyes are lode-stars;and your tongue's sweet
My tongue should catch your tongue's sweet
Were the world mine, Demetrius being bated,
The rest I'll give to be to you translated.
smiles such skill!
Hel. O, that my prayers could such affection How chance the roses there do fade so
move ! Her. Belike, for want of rain ; which I could Her. The more I hate, the more be follows me. well
Hel. The more I love, the more he hateth me.
Lys. Ah mel for aught that ever I could read, Hel. None, bat your beauty ; 'Would that fault
Before the time I'did Lysander see,
Her silver visage in the wat'ry glass,
And thence, from Athens, turn away our eyes,
To seek new friends and stranger companies. Because it is a customary cross;
Farewell, sweet playfellow; pray thon for us, As due to love, as thoughts, and dreams, and And good luck grant thee thy Demetrius ! sighs,
Keep word, Lysander; we must starve our sight Wishes, and tears, poor fancy's followers. From lovers' food, till morrow deep midnight. Lys. A good persuasion: therefore, hear me,
[Erit Hermine Hermia,
Lys. I will, my Hermia.--Helena, adioa:
As you on him, Demetrius dote on you !
Flu. Nay, faith, let me not play a woman; 1
[Exit Lysander. have a beard coming. Hel. How happy some, o'er other some can Quin. That's all one ; you shall play it in a be !
mask, and you may speak as small as you will. Through Athens I am thought as fair as she. Bot. An 1 may hide my face, let me play But what of that? Demetrius thinks not so; Thisby too : l'll speak in a monstrous little He will not know what all but he do know. voice -Thisne, Thisne-Ah, Pyramus, my loAnd as he errs, doting on Hermia's eyes, ver dear ; thy Thisby dear!'and lady dear! So, I admiring of his qualities,
Quin. No, no ; you must play Pyramus; and, Things base and vile, holding no quantity, Flute, you Thisby. Love can transpose to form and dignity. Bot. Well, proceed. Love looks not with the eyes, but with the mind;| Quin. Robin Starveling, the tailor. And therefore is wing'd Cupid painted blind; Star. Here, Peter Quince. Nor hath love's mind of any judgment taste; Quin. Robin Starveling, you must play This Wings, and no eyes, figure unheedy baste : by's mother.-Tom Snout, the tinker. And therefore is love said to be a child,
Snout. Here, Peter Quince. Because in choice he is so oft beguil'd.
Quin. You, Pyramus's father; myself, This As waggish boys in game themselves forswear, by's father -Snug, the joiner, you, the lion's So the boy love is perjur'd every where; part :-and, I hope, here is a play fitted. For ere Demetrius look'd on Hermia's eyne, Snug: Have you the lion's part written?
pray He hail'd down oaths, that he was only mine: you, if it be, give it me, for I am slow of study. And when this hail some heat from Hermia felt, Quin. You may do it'extempore, for it is noSo he dissolv'd, and showers of oaths did melt thing but roaring. I will go tell him of fair Herrnia's flight; Bot. Let me play the lion too : I will roar, Then to the wood will he, to-morrow night,
that I will do any man's heart good to hear me Pursue her; and for this intelligence,
I will roar, that I will make the duke say, Let If I have thanks, it is a dear expense:
him toar again, Let him roar again. But herein mean I to enrich my pain,,
Quin. An you should do it too terribly, you To have his sight thither and back again. (Exit would fright the duchess and the ladies, that
they would shriek ; and that were enough to SCENE II. The same. A Room in a Cottage. hang us all.
All. That would hang is every mother's son. Enter Snug, Bottom, Flute, Snout, Quince, and
Bot. I grant you, friends, if that you should Starveling.
fright the ladies out of their wits, they would Quin. Is all our company here?
have no more discretion but to hang us : but I Bot. You were best to call them generally, will aggravate my voice so, that I will roar you man by man, according to the serip.
as gently as any sucking, dove; I will roar you Quin. Here is the scroll of every man's name, an 'twere any nightingale. which is thought fit, through all Athens, to play Quin. You can play no part but Pyramus: for in our interlude before the duke and duchess, on Pyrumus is a sweet-faced man; a proper man, his wedding day at night.
as one shall see in a summer's day; a most lovely, Bot. First, good Peter Quince, say what the gentleman-like man; therefore you must needs play treats on; then read the names of the ac- play Pyramus. tors; and so grow to a point.
Bot. Well, I will undertake it. What beard Quin. Marry, our play is—The most lament- were 1 best to play it in? able comedy, and most cruel death of Pyramus Quin. Why, what you will. and Thisby
Bot. I will discharge it in either your straw. Bot. A very good piece of work, I assure you, coloured beard, your orange-tawny beard, your and a merry. – Now, good Peter Quince, call purple-in-grain beard, or your French-crownforth your actors by the scroll : Masters, spread colour beard, your perfect yellow. yourselves.
Quin. Some of your French crowns have no Quin. Answer, as I call you.-Nick Bottom, hair at all, and then you will play bare-faced. the weaver
But, masters, here are your parts: and I am to Bot Ready : Name what part I am for, and entreat you, request you, and desire you, to con proceed.
them by to-morrow night; and meet me in the Quin. You, Nick Bottom, are set down for palace wood, a mile without the town, by moonPyramus.
light; there will we rehearse : for if we meet in Bot. What is Pyramus ? a lover, or a tyrant ? the city, we shall be dogg'd with company, and Quin. A lover, that kills himself most gallantly our devices known. In the mean time I will for love.
draw a bill of properties, such as our play wants Bot. That will ask some tears in the true per 1 pray you, fail me not. forming of it: If I do it, let the audience look Bot. We will meet; and there we may rehearse to their eyes ; I will
move storms, I will condole more obscenely, and courageously. Take pains; in some measure. To the rest :-Yet my chief be perfect, adieu. humour is for a tyrant: I could play Ercles rare
Quin. At the duke's oak we meet. ly, or a part to tear a cat in, to make all split.
Bot. Enough; Hold, or cut bow-strings.
ACT II. .
SCENE I. A Wood near Athens.
Enter a Fairy at one door, and Puck at
another. The foolish fates."
Puck. How now, spirit! whither wander you? This was lofty !-Now name the rest of the Fai. Over hill, over dale, players. This is Ercles' vein, a tyrant's veiu ; Thorough bush, thorough briar, a lover is more condoling.
Over park, over pale, Quin. Francis Flute, the bellows-mender.
Thorough flood, thorough fire. Flu. Here, Peter Quince.
1 do wander every where, Ruin. You must take Thisby on you.
Swifter than the moones sphere;
And I serve the fairy queen,
The cowslips tall her pensioners be; And make him with fair Egle break his faith,
Tita. These are the forgeries of jealousy:
Met we on hill, in dale, forest, or mead,
To dance our ringlets to the whistling wind, Puck. The king doth keep his revels here to- But with thy brawls thou hast disturb'd' our night ;
As in revenge, have suck'd up from the sea
That they have overborne their continents:
The fold stands empty in the drowned field, And now they never meet in grove, or green, And crows are fatted with the
murrain flock; By fountain clear, or spangled star-light sheen, The nine men's morris is fill'd up with mud; But they do square; that all their elves, for fear, and the quaint mazes in the wanton green, Creep into acorn cups, and hide them there. For lack of tread, are undistinguishable: Fai Either I mistake your shape and making The human mortals want their winter here; quite,
No night is now with hymn or carol blest:
Fall in the fresh lap of the crimson rose;
Their wonted liveries; and the 'mazed world,
By their increase, now knows not which is
And this same progeny of evils comes
Obe. Do you amend it then; it lies in you:
I do but beg a little changeling boy,
Set your heart at rest,
Marking the embark'd traders on the flood;
And grow big-bellied, with the wanton wind;
Which she, with pretty and with swimming gait Fai. And here my mistress :—'Would that he Following (her womb then rich with my young were gone!
Wonld imitate ; and sail upon the land,
To fetch me trifles, and return again,
But she, being mortal, of that boy did die;
Tita. What, jealous Oberon? Fairy, skip hence; And, for her sake, I will not part with him.
Obe. How long within this wood intend you
Obe. Give me that boy, and I will go with
thee. Your buskin'd mistress, and your warrior love, Tita. Not for thy fairy kingdom.--Fairies, To Theseus must be wedded ; and you come
away i To give their bed joy and prosperity.
We shall chide down-right, if I longer stay. Obe. How canst thou thus, for shame, Titania,
[Exeunt Titania, and her train. Glance at my credit with Hippolyta,
Obe. Well, go thy way: Thou shalt not from Knowing I know thy love to 'Thesens ?
this grove, Didst thou not lead him through the glimmering Till I torment thee for this injury.night
My gentle Puck, come hither: Thou remember'st From Perigenia, whom he ravished ?
Since once I sat upon a promontory,
And heard a mermaid, on a dolphin's back, Nor doth this wood lack worlds of company; Uttering such dulcet and harmonious breath, For you, in my respect, are all the world: That the rude sea grew civil at her song;
Then how can it be said, I am alone, And certain stars shot madly from their spheres, When all the world is here to look on me? To hear the sea-maid's musick.
Dem. I'll run from thee, and hide me in the Puck.
brakes, Obe. That very time I saw (but thou could'st And leave thee to the mercy of wild beasts. not,)
Hel. The wildest hath not such a heart as you. Flying between the cold moon and the earth, Run when you will, the story shall be chang'd; Cupid all arm'd: a certain aim he took
Apollo flies, and Daphne holds the chase; At à fair vestal, throned by the west;
The dove pursues the griffin; the mild hind And loos'd his love-shaft smartly from his bow, Makes speed to catch the tiger: Bootless speed ! As it should pierce a hundred thousand hearts: When cowardice pursues, and valour flies. But I might see young Cupid's fiery shaft Dem. I will not stay thy questions ; let me go Quench'd in the chaste beams of the wat'ry Or, if thou follow me, do not believe moon;
But I shall do thee mischief in the wood. And the imperial vot’ress passed on,
Hel. Ay, in the temple, in the town, the field, In maiden meditation, fancy-free.
You do me mischief.' Fie, Demetrius! Yet mark'd I where the boli of Cupid fell : Your wrongs do & scandal on my sex: It feel upon a little western flower,
We cannot fight for love as men may do; Before, 'milk-white; now purple with love's We should be woo'd, and were not made to woo wound
I'll follow thee, and make a heaven of hell, And maidens call it, love-in-idleness.
To die upon the hand I love so well. Fetch me that flower: the herb I show'd thee
(Ereunt Dem. and Hel. once :
Obe. Fare thee well, nymph: ere he do leave The juice of it on sleeping eyelids laid,
this grove, Will make or man or woman, madly dote Thou shalt fly hím, and he shall seek thy love. Upon the next live creature that it sees. Fetch me this herb: and be thou here again,
Re-enter Puck. Ere the leviathan can swim a league.
Hast thou the flower there? Welcome, wanPuck. I'll put a girdle round about the earth
derer. In forty minutes.
there it is. Obe. Having once this juice, Obe.
1 pray thee, give it me, I'll watch Titania when she is asleep,
I know a bank whereon the wild thyme blows And drop the liquor of it in her eyes :
Where oxlips and the nodding violet grows: The next thing then she waking looks upon
Quite over-canopied with luscious woodbine, (Be it on lion, bear, or wolf, or bull,
With sweet musk-roses, and with eglantine: On meddling monkey, or on busy ape,)
There sleeps Titania, some time of the night, She shall pursue it with the soul of love.
Lull'd in these flowers with dances and delight; And ere I take this charm off from her sight
And there the snake throws her enameld skin, (As I can take it with another herb,) I'll make her render up her page to me.
Weed wide enough to wrap a fairy in:
And with the juice of this l'll streak her eyes, But who comes here? I am invisible;
And make her full of hateful fantasies. And I will overhear their conference.
Take thou some of it, and seek through this Enter Demetrius, Helena following him.
grove: Dem. I love thee not, therefore, pursue me not. With a disdainful youth: anoint his eyes;
A sweet Athenian lady is in love Where is Lysander, and fair Hermia ?
But do it, when the next thing he espies The one I'll slay, the other slayeth me. Thou told'st me they were stol'n into this wood, May be the lady: Thon shall know the man
By the Athenian garments he hath on. And here am I, and wood within this wood,
Effect it with some care, that he may prove Becalise I cannot meet with Hermia.
More fond on her, than she upon her love : Hence, get thee gone, and follow me no more. Hel. You draw me, you hard-hearted adamant;| Puck. Fear not, my lord, your servant shall
And look thou meet me ere the first cock crow. But yet you draw not iron, for my heart
do so. Is true as steel; Leave you your power to draw,
(Exeunt And I shall have no power to follow you.
SCENE II. Another part of the Wood. Dem. Do I entice you? Do I speak you fair ? Or, rather, do I not in plainest truth
Enter Titania, with her train. Tell you-I do not, nor I cannot love you? Tita. Come, now a roundel, and a fairy song;
Hel. And even for that do I love you the more. Then for the third part of a minute, hence ; I am your spaniel; and, Demetrius,
Some, to kill cankers in the musk-rose buds; The more you beat me, I will fawn on you: Some, war with rear-mice for their leather Use me but as your spaniel, spurn me, strike me, wings, Neglect me, lose me; only give me leave, To make my small elves coats; and some keep Unworthy as I am, to follow you.
back What worser place can I beg in your love, The clamorous owl, that nightly hoots, and (And yet a place of high respect with me,)
wonders Than to be used as you do use your dog? At our quaint spirits ; Sing me now asleep; Dem. Tempt not too much the hatred of my Then to your offices, and let me rest. spirit;
SONG. For I am sick, when I do look on thee. Hel. And I am sick, when I look not on you. 1 Fai. You spotted snakes, with double tongue, Dem. You do impeach your modesty too much
Thorny hedge-hogs, be not seen; To leave the city, and commit yourself
Newtes, and blindworms, do no wrong; Into the hands of one that loves you not;
Come not near our fairy queen : To trust the opportunity of night,
Chorus Philomel, with melody, And the ill counsel of a desert place,
Sing in our sweet lullaby ; With the rich worth of your virginity.
Lulla, lulla, lullaby; lulla, lulla, lullaby. Hel. Your virtue is my privilege for that.
Never harm, nor spell nor charm, It is not night, when I do see your face, .
Come our lovely lady nigh; "Sherefore I think I am not in the night :
So, good night, wilh lullaby.
Enter Demetrius and Helena, running. 2 Fai. Weaving spiders, come not here;
Hel. Stay, though thou kill me, sweet DemeHence, you long-legg'd spinners,
trius. hence :
Dem. I charge thee, hence, and do not haunt Beetles black, approach not near ;
me thus. Worm, nor snail, do no offence.
Hel. 0, wilt thou darkling leave me ? do not so. Chorus. Philomel, with melody, &c.
Dem. Stay, on thy peril ; 1 alone will go.
(Exit Demetrius. I Fai. Hence, away; now all is well : Hel. O, I am out of breath in this fond chase! One, aloof, stand sentinel.
The more my prayer, the lesser is my grace. [Exeunt Fairies. Titania sleeps. Happy is Hermia, wheresoe'er she lies;
For she hath blessed and attractive eyes.
How came her eyes so bright ? Not with salt
tears: Obe. What thou seest, when thou dost wake, If so, my eyes are oftener wash'd than hers.
(Squeezes the flower on Titania's eyelids. No, no, I am as ngly as a bear ; Do it for thy true love take;
For beasts that meet me, run away for fear: Love, and languish for his sake :
Therefore, no marvel, though Demetrius Be it ounce, or cat, or bear,
Do, as a monster, fly my presence thus. Pard, or boar with bristled hair,
What wicked and dissembling glass of mine In thy eye that shall appear
Made me compare with Hermia's sphery eyne ? When thou wak'st, it is thy dear;
But who is here?-Lysander! on the ground ! Wake, when some vile thing is near. [Exit. Dead? or asleep? I see no blood, no wound :
Lysander, if you live, good sir, awake.
Lys. And run through fire I will, for thy Lyz. Fair love, you faint with wandering in Transparent Helena ; Nature shows her art,
(Waking. the woodl; And to speak troth, I have forgot our way ;
That throngh thy bosom makes me see thy heart We'll rest iis, Hermia, if you think it good,
Where is Demetrius ? O, how fit a word And tarry for the comfort of the day. Her. Be it so, Lysander : find you out a bed, What though he love your Hermia ? Lord,
what Is that vile name to perish on my sword !
Hel. Do not say so, Lysander, say not so: For Inpon this bank will rest my head. Lys. One turf shall serve as pillow for us both; Yet Hermia still loves you then be content.
though? One heart, one bed, two bosoms, and one troth Her. Nay, good Lysander; for my sake, my The tedious minutes 1 with her have spent.
Lys. Content with Hermia? No: I do repent Lie further off yet, do not lie so near.
Not Hermia, but Helena I love:
Who will not change a raven for a dove ?
And reason says you are the worthier maid. I mean, that my heart unto yours is knit ;
Things growing are not ripe until their season: So that but one heart we can make of it:
So I, being young, till now ripe not to reason ; Two bosoms interchained with an oath;
And touching now the point of human skill,
Reason becomes the marshal to my will,
And leads me to your eyes; where I o'erlook
Love's stories written in love's richest book. For, lying so, Hermia, I do not lie. Her. Lysander riddles very prettily :
Hel. Wherefore was I to this keen mockery Now much beshrewiny manners and my pride, When, at your hands, did I deserve this scorn ?
born? Ji Hermja meant to say, Lysander lied. But, gentle friend, for love and courtesy
Is't not enough, is't not enough, young man, Lie further off ; in human modesty
That I did never, no, nor never can,
Deserve a sweet look from Demetrius' eye,
But you must flout my insufficiency?
do, Thy love ne'er alter, til thy sweet life end ! Lys. Amen, amen, to that fair prayer, say I; But fare you well: perforce I must confess,
In such disdainful manner me to woo. And then end life, when I end loyalty !
I thought you lord of more true gentleness. Here is my bed : Sleep give thee all his rest! Her. With half that wish the wisher's eyes be o, that a lady, of one man refusa,
Should, of another, therefore be abus'd! (Erit
Lys. She sees not Hermia !-Hermia, sleep Enter Puck.
And never mayst thou come Lysander near! Puck. Throngh tne forest have I gone,
For, as a surfeit of the sweetest things But Athenian found 1 none,
The deepest loathing to the stomach brings; On whose eyes I might approve
Or, as the heresies, that men do leave, This flower's force in stirring love.
Are hated most of those they did deceive; Night and silence! who is here?
So thou, my surfeit, and my heresy, Weeds of Athens he doth wear:
Of all be hated; but the most of me! This is he, my master said,
And all my powers, address your love and might, Despised the Athenian maid ;
To honour Helen, and to be her knight! [Erit. and here the maiden, sleeping sound, Her. (starting. ) Help me, Lysander, help me! On the dank and dirty ground.
do thy best, Pretty soul! she durst not lie
To pluck this crawling serpent from my breast 1 Near this lack-love, this kill-courtesy. Ah me, for pity !-what a dream was here? Churl, upon thy eyes I throw
Lysander, look, how I do quake with fear: All the power this charm doth owe: Methought a serpent eat my heart away, When thou wak'st, let love forbid
And you sat smiling at his crnel prey Sleep his seat on thy eye-lid.
Lysander! what, remov'd? Lysander! lord ! So awake, when I am gone;
What, out of hearing? gone? no sound, no word? For I must now to Oberon.
[Erit. Alack, where are you? speak, an if you hear;