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Lys. O take the sense, sweet, of my innocence, Love takes the meaning in love's conference. I mean that my heart unto yours 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! 70 Her. With half that wish the wisher's eyes be press'd! They sleep.
Puck. Through the forest have I gone,
Dem. I charge thee, hence, and do not haunt me thus.
Hel. O! wilt thou darkling leave me? do not so.
If so, my eyes are oftener wash'd than hers.
For beasts that meet me run away for fear;
Yet Hermia still loves you: then be content.
Hel. Wherefore was I to this keen mockery born?
I thought you lord of more true gentleness.
And never may'st thou come Lysander near.
Of all be hated, but the most of me!
To pluck this crawling serpent from my breast.
SCENE I.-A Wood. TITANIA 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 tiring-house; and we will do it in action as we will do it before the duke.
Bot. Peter Quince,
Quin. What sayest thou, bully Bottom?
Bot. There are things in this comedy of Pyramus 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 'r lakin, a parlous fear.
Star. 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, we will do no harm with our swords, and that Pyramus 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. 29 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 moonlight 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 almanac; find out moonshine, find out moonshine.
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 Moonshine. 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 can never bring in a wall. What say you, Bottom?
Bot. Some man or other must present Wall; and let him have some plaster, or some loam, or some rough-cast about him, to signify wall; and let him hold his fingers thus, and through that cranny shall Pyramus and Thisby whisper.
Quin. Speak, Pyramus. Thisby, stand forth. Bot. Thisby, the flowers of odious savours sweet,— Quin. Odours, odours.
Bot. -odours savours sweet :
So hath thy breath, my dearest Thisby dear. But hark, a voice! stay thou but here awhile, And by and by I will to thee appear. Puck. A stranger Pyramus than e'er play'd here! Exit. 9
Flute. Must I speak now?
Quin. Ay, marry, must you; for you must understand he goes but to see a noise that he heard, and is to come again.
Flute. Most radiant Pyramus, most lily-white of hue,
Quin. 'Ninus' tomb,' man. Why, you must not speak that yet; that you answer to Pyramus. You speak all your part at once, cues and all. Pyramus, enter: your cue is past; it is 'never tire.' Re-enter PUCK, and BOTTOM with an ass's head. Flute. O-As true as truest horse, that yet would never tire.
Bot. If I were fair, Thisby, I were only thine. Quin. O monstrous! O strange we are haunted.
Pray, masters! fly, masters! help!
Exeunt Clowns. Puck. I ll follow you, I'll lead you about a round, Through bog, through bush, through brake,
through brier :
Sometime a horse I'll be, sometime a hound, 110
Like horse, hound, hog, bear, fire, at every turn.
Bot. Why do they run away? this is a knavery of them to make me afeard.
Snout. O Bottom, thou art changed! what do I see on thee?
Bot. What do you see? you see an ass-head Exit SNOUT. of your own, do you?
Quin. Bless thee, Bottom! bless thee! thou art translated. Exit. 121
Bot. I see their knavery: this is to make an ass of me; to fright me, if they could. But I will not stir from this place, do what they can: I will walk up and down here, and I will sing. that they shall hear I am not afraid.
The ousel-cock, so black of hue,
With orange-tawny bill,
The throstle with his note so true,
The wren with little quill.
Bot. I pray you, commend me to Mistress Squash, your mother, and to Master Peascod, your father. Good Master Pease-blossom, I shall desire you of more acquaintance too. Your
Tita. Awaking. What angel wakes me from name, I beseech you, sir? my flowery bed?
Bot. The finch, the sparrow, and the lark,
The plain-song cuckoo gray.
Whose note full many a man doth mark,
And dares not answer, nay;
for, indeed, who would set his wit to so foolish a bird? who would give a bird the lie, though he cry cuckoo' never so?
Tita. I pray thee, gentle mortal, sing again :
But. Methinks, mistress, you should have little reason for that: and yet, to say the truth, reason and love keep little company together now-a-days. The more the pity, that some honest neighbours will not make them friends. Nay, I can gleek upon occasion.
Enter Four Fairies.
Where shall we go?
Bot. Good Master Mustard-seed, I know your patience well: that same cowardly, giant-like oxbeef hath devoured many a gentleman of your house. I promise you your kindred hath made my eyes water ere now. I desire your more acquaintance, good Master Mustard-seed. Tita. Come, wait upon him; lead him to my bower: The moon methinks looks with a watery eye; And when she weeps, weeps every little flower, Lamenting some enforced chastity.
Tie up my love's tongue, bring him silently.
SCENE II.-Another Part of the Wood.
Obe. I wonder if Titania be awak'd;
Here comes my messenger. How now, mad spirit!
I led them on in this distracted fear,
Bot. I cry your worships mercy, heartily: I With the love-juice, as I did bid thee do? beseech your worship's name.
Bot. I shall desire you of more acquaintance, good Master Cobweb: if I cut my finger, I shall make bold with you. Your name, honest
Puck. I took him sleeping, that is finish'd too,
Enter DEMETRIUS and HERMIA.
Dem. O! why rebuke you him that loves you so? Lay breath so bitter on your bitter foe.
Her. Now I but chide; but I should use thee
For thou, I fear, hast given me cause to curse.
The sun was not so true unto the day
As he to me.
Would he have stol'n away From sleeping Hermia? I'll believe as soon This whole earth may be bor'd, and that the moon May through the centre creep, and so displease Her brother's noontide with the Antipodes. It cannot be but thou hast murder'd him; So should a murderer look, so dead, so grim. Dem. So should the murder'd look, and so should I,
Pierc'd through the heart with your stern cruelty; Yet you, the murderer, look as bright, as clear, As yonder Venus in her glimmering sphere.
Her. What's this to my Lysander? where is he? Ah! good Demetrius, wilt thou give him me? Dem. I had rather give his carcass to my hounds.
Her. Out, dog! out, cur! thou driv'st me past the bounds
Of maiden's patience. Hast thou slain him then?
Could not a worm, an adder, do so much?
I am not guilty of Lysander's blood,
Her. I pray thee, tell me then that he is well.
Exit. Dem. There is no following her in this fierce
Here therefore for a while I will remain.
Lies down and sleeps. Obe. What hast thou done? thou hast mistaken quite.
And laid the love-juice on some true-love's sight:
A million fail, confounding oath on oath.
Obe. Flower of this purple dye,
Puck. Captain of our fairy band,
Shall we their ford pageant see? Lord, what fools these mortals be! Obe. Stand aside: the noise they make Will cause Demetrius to awake. Puck. Then will two at once woo one; That must needs be sport alone; And those things do best please më 120 That befall preposterously.
Enter LYSANDER and HELENA.
Lys. Why should you think that I should woo in scorn?
Scorn and derision never come in tears: Look, when I vow, I weep; and vows so born, In their nativity all truth appears. How can these things in me seem scorn to you, Bearing the badge of faith to prove them true! Hel. You do advance your cunning more and more. When truth kills truth, O devilish-holy fray! These vows are Hermia's: will you give her o'er? Weigh oath with oath, and you will nothing weigh:
Your vows, to her and me, put in two scales, Will even weigh, and both as light as tales. Lys. I had no judgment when to her I swore. Hel. Nor none, in my mind, now you give her
Lys. Demetrius loves her, and he loves not you. Dem. Araking. O Helen! goddess, nymph, perfect, divine!
To what, my love, shall I compare thine eyne ?
Hel. O spite! O hell! I see you all are bent
And here, with all good will, with all my heart,
There to remain.
Helen, it is not so.
Dem. Disparage not the faith thou dost not know,
Lest to thy peril thou aby it dear.
Who even but now did spurn me with his foot,
Look! where thy love comes: yonder is thy dear. Wink each at other; hold the sweet jest up:
The hate I bear thee made me leave thee so? 190
Is all the counsel that we two have shar'd,
All school-days' friendship, childhood innocence?
Have with our needles created both one flower,
Her. I am amazed at your passionate words.
Thy love! out, tawny Tartar, out!
Although I hate her, I'll not harm her so. 270
Hate me! wherefore? Ome! what news, my love?
Why, then you left me-O, the gods forbid !--