Abbildungen der Seite

that hath no beard is less than a man: and he that is ACT II more than a youth is not for me; and he that is less Sc. I than a man, I am not for him. Therefore I will even take sixpence in earnest of the berrord, and lead his

apes into Hell.


But yet

LEON. Well, then, go you into Hell ?
BEAT. No; but to the gate; and there will the Devil

meet me, like an old cuckold, with horns on his head,
and say Get you to Heaven, Beatrice, get you to
Heaven; here's no place for you maids : so deliver I
up my apes, and away to Saint Peter for the Heavens !2
He shews me where the bachelors sit, and there live we

as merry as the day is long. Ant. [to HERO.] Well, Niece, I trust you will be ruld

by your father. BEAT. Yes, faith; it is my cousin's duty to make

courtesy, and say Father, as it please you. for all that, Cousin, let him be a handsome fellow, or else make another courtesy, and say Father, as it please me. LEON. Well, Niece, I hope to see you one day fitted with

a husband. BEAT. Not till God make men of some other metal than

earth. Would it not grieve a woman to be overmaster'd with a piece of valiant dust ? to make an account of her life to a clod of wayward marl ? No, Uncle; I'll none: Adam's sons are my brethren;

and, truly, I hold it a sin to match in my kindred. LEON. Daughter, remember what I told you : if the

Prince do solicit you in that kind, you know your




BEAT. The fault will be in the music, Cousin, if you be

not woo'd in good time: if the Prince be too important, tell him there is measure in every thing, and so dance out the answer. For, hear me, Hero : wooing, wedding, and repenting is as a Scotch jig, a measure, and a cinque-pace:5 the first suit is hot and hasty, like a Scotch jig, and full as fantastical; the wedding, mannerly-modest, as a measure full of state and ancientry; and then comes Repentance, and with

[blocks in formation]

Sc. I

his bad legs falls into the cinque-pace faster and faster,

till he sink apace into his grave. LEON. Cousin, you apprehend passing shrewdly. BEAT. I have a good eye, Uncle: I can see a church by

daylight. Leon. The revellers are entering, Brother: make good





and others, maskers, with a drum. D. PEDRO. Lady, will you walk about with your friend? HERO. So you walk softly, and look sweetly, and say

nothing, I am your's for the walk; and especially when

I walk away.
D. PEDRO. With me in your company ?
HERO. I may say so, when I please.
D. PEDRO. And when please you to say so?
HERO. When I like your favour; for God defend the

lute should be like the case !
D. PEDRO. My visor is Philemon's roof; within the house

is Jove.
HERO. Why, then your visor should be thatch’d.

Speak low, if you speak loye.

[They pass. Balth. Well, I would


did like me.
Marg. So would not I for your own sake; for I have

many ill qualities.
BALTH. Which is one?
Marg. I say my prayers aloud.
BALTH. I love you the better : the hearers may cry Amen.

Marg. God match me with a good dancer !
BALTH. Amen!
MARG. And God keep him out of my sight when the

dance is done! Answer, Clerk.
Balth. No more words: the clerk is answer'd. [They pass.
Urs. I know you well enough; you are Signior Antonio.
ANT. At a word, I am not.
Urs. I know you by the waggling of your head.
Ant. To tell you true, I counterfeit him.


[ocr errors]


an end.

I 20

pray you, what

URs. You could never do him so ill-well, unless you were ACT II

the very man. Here's his dry hand up and down: Sc. I

you are he, you are he. ANT. At a word, I am not. URS. Come, come, do you think I do not know you by

your excellent wit ? can virtue hide itself? Go to,
mum, you are he: graces will appear, and there's

[They pass.
Beat. Will you not tell me who told you so ?
BENE. No; you shall pardon me.
BEAT. Nor will you not tell me who you are ?
BENE. Not now.
BEAT. That I was disdainful, and that I had my good

wit out of the Hundred Merry Tales. Well, this

was Signior Benedick that said so.
BENE. What's he?
BEAT. I am sure you know him well enough.
BENE. Not I, believe me.
BEAT. Did he never make you laugh?

what is he?
BEAT. Why, he is the Prince's Jester : a very dull Fool;

only his gift is in devising impossible slanders: none but libertines delight in him; and the commendation is not in his wit but in his villainy; for he both pleases men, and angers them, and then they laugh at him, and beat him. I am sure he is in the Fleet:1 I would he

had boarded me. BENE. When I know the gentleman, I'll tell him what

you say BEAT. Do, do; he'll but break a comparison or two on

me: which, peradventure, not mark’d, or not laugh'd at, strikes him into melancholy; and then there's a partridge' wing sav'd, for the fool will eat no supper that night. [Music within.] We must follow the

BENE. In every good thing.
BEAT. Nay, if they lead to any ill, I will leave them at
the next turning. [Dance. Exeunt all but Don John,

BORACHIO, and Claudio.
D. John. Sure my brother is amorous on Hero, and hath

1 in the present company (?).
II : C




Sc. I


withdrawn her father to break with him about it. The

ladies follow her, and but one visor remains. BORA. [to Don John.] And that is Claudio: I know him

by his bearing
D. John [to CLAUDIO, masked.] Are not you Signior

CLAUD. You know me well ; I am he.
D. John. Signior, you are very near my brother in his

love: he is enamour'd on Hero. I pray you, dissuade
him from her, she is no equal for his birth : you may

do the part of an honest man in it. CLAUD. How know you he loves her?

D. JOHN. I heard him swear his affection.
BORA. So did I too; and he swore he would marry her

D. John. Come, let us to the banquet.

[Exeunt Don John and BORACHIO. CLAUD. Thus answer I in name of Benedick,

But hear these ill news with the ears of Claudio.
'Tis certain so; the Prince wooes for himself.
Friendship is constant in all other things,
Save in the office and affairs of love:
Therefore all hearts in love use their own tongues ;
Let every eye negotiate for itself,
And trust no agent. Beauty is a witch
Against whose charms faith melteth into blood.
This is an accident of hourly proof,
Which I mistrusted' not. Farewell, then, Hero!



Re-enter BENEDICK.
BENE. Count Claudio ?
CLAUD. Yea; the same.
BENE. Come, will you go with me?
CLAUD. Whither?
BENE. Even to the next willow, about your own busi-

ness, Count. What fashion will you wear the garland
of? about your neck, like an usurer's chain? or under
your arm, like a lieutenant's scarf? You must wear

it one way, for the Prince hath got your Hero. Claud. I wish him joy of her.

1 suspected.


Sc. I

BENE. Why, that's spoken like an honest drovier : so

they sell bullocks. But did you think the Prince

would have serv'd you thus ? CLAUD. I pray you, leave me. BENE. Ho! now you strike like the blind man: 'twas

the boy that stole your meat, and you 'll beat the post. CLAUD. If it will not be, I 'll leave you.

[exit. BENE. Alas, poor hurt fowl! now will he creep into

sedges. But that my Lady Beatrice should know me, and not know me! The Prince's Fool ! Ha! It may be I


under that title because I am merry. Yea; but so I am apt to do myself wrong. I am not so reputed: it is the base, though bitter, disposition of Beatrice that puts the World into her person, and so gives me out. Well, I'll be reveng'd as I may.


Re-enter Don PEDRO.
D. PEDRO. Now, Signior, where's the Count ? did you

see him?
BENE. Troth, my Lord, I have play'd the part of Lady

Fame. I found him here as melancholy as a lodge in a warren: I told him, and I think I told him true, that your Grace had got the good-will of this young lady; and I offer'd him my company to a willow-tree, either to make him a garland, as being forsaken, or to

bind him up a rod, as being worthy to be whipp'd. D. PEDRO. To be whipp'd! What 's his fault ? BENE. The flat transgression of a schoolboy: who, being

overjoy'd with finding a bird's-nest, shews it his com

panion, and he steals it.
D. PEDRO. Wilt thou make a trust a transgression?

The transgression is in the stealer.
BENE. Yet it had not been amiss the rod had been made,

and the garland too; for the garland he might have
worn himself, and the rod he might have bestow'd on

you, who, as I take it, have stol’n his bird's-nest. D. PEDRO. I will but teach them to sing, and restore

them to the owner. BENE. If their singing answer your saying, by my faith,

you say honestly.



« ZurückWeiter »