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By that which knitteth souls, and prospers loves ;
Enter HELENA. Her. God speed fair Helena! Whither away?
Hel. Call you me fair? that fair again unsay. Demetrius loves your fair; O happy fair ! Your eyes are lode-stars '; and your tongue's sweet More tuneable than lark to shepherd's ear, When wheat is green, when hawthorn buds appear. Sickness is catching ; 0, were favouri 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
Her. I frown upon him, yet he loves me still.
such skill! 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.
were mine! Her. Take comfort; he no more shall see my
Lysander and myself will fly this place. -
Lys. Helen, to you our minds we will unfold:
Her. And in the wood, where often you and I Upon faint primrose beds were wont to lie, Emptying our bosoms of their counsels 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 HERM. Lys. I will, my Hermia. — Helena, adieu : As you on him, Demetrius dote on you !
(Exit Lys. 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.
SCENE II. The same. A Room in a Cottage. Enter SNUG, Bottom, FLUTE, Snout, QUINCE,
and STARVELING. Quin. Is all our company here?
Bot. You were best to call them generally, man by man, according to the scrip. Quin. Here is the scroll of
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.
Quin. Marry, our play is. - The most lamentable comedy, 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 actors by the scroll: Masters, spread yourselves.
Quin. Answer, as I call you. - Nick Bottom, the
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 love.
Bot. That will ask some tears in the true performing of it: If I do it, let the audience look to their
eyes ; I will move storms, I will condole in some measure. To the rest : - Yet
chief humour is for a tyrant: I could play Ercles rarely, or a part to tear a cat in, to make all split.
“ The raging rocks,
« Of prison-gates :
“ The foolish fates.' 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.
Flu. 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, 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 to hang us. all.