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0, teach me how you look; and with what art Quin. Here is the scroll of every man's name, You sway the motion of Demetrius' heart.
which is thought fit, through all Athens, to play in
But. First, gond Peter Quince, say what the
Quin. Marry, our play is—The most lamenta-
your actors by the scroll: Masters, spread your-
Quin. Answer, as I call you.--Nick Bottom, Lysander and myself will fly this place.
the weaver. Before the time I did Lysander see,
Bot. Ready: Name what part I am for, and Seem'd Athens as a paradise to me:
proceed. O then, what graces in my love do dwell,
Quin. You, Nick Bottom, are set down for PyThat he hath turn'd a heaven unto hell!
Lys. Helen, to you our minds we will unfold : Bot. What is Pyramus ? a lover, or a tyrant ? To-morrow night when Phæbe doth behold
Quin. A lover, that kills himself most gallantly Her silver visage in the wat’ry glass,
for love. Decking with liquid pearl the bladed grass
Bot. That will ask some tears in the true per(A time that lovers' tights doth still conceal,) forming of it: If I do it, let the audience look to Through Athens' gates have we devis'd to steal. their eyes; I will move storms, I will condole in
Her. And in the wood, where often you and I some measuro. To the rest :-Yet my chief hu-
6* The raging rocks, And thence, from Athens, turn away our eyes,
With shivering shocks, To seek new friends and stranger companies.
Shall break the locks Farewell, sweet playfellow; pray thou for us,
Of prison gates : And good luck grant thee thy Demetrius!
And Phibbus' car Keep word, Lysander: we must starve our sight
Shall shine from far, From lovers' food, till morrow deep midnight.
And make and mar [Exit Herm.
The foolish fates."
[Erit LYSANDER. more condoling.
Quin. You must take Thisby on you.
Flu. What is Thisby? a wandering knight? And as he errs, doting on Hermia's eyes,
Quin. It is the lady that Pyramus must love. So I, admiring of his qualities.
Flu. Nay, faith, let me not play a woman; I Things base and vile, holding no quantity, have a beard coming. Lore can transpose to form and dignity.
Quin. That's all one; you shall play it in a Love looks not with the eyes, but with the mind; mask, and you may speak as small as you will." And therefore is winged Cupid painted blind; Bot. An I may hide my face, let me play Thisby Nor hath love's mind of any judgment taste; too: I'll speak in a monstrous little voice ; — Thisne, Wings, and no eyes, figure unheedy haste : Thisnem Ah, Pyramus, my lover dear; thy Thisky And therefore is love said to be a child,
dear! and lady dear! Because in choice he is so oft beguild.
Quin. No, no; you must play Pyramus; and, As waggish boys in game' themselves forswear, Flute, you Thisby. So the boy love is perjur'd every where :
Bot. Well, proceed. For ere Demetrius look'd on Hermia's eyne,? Quin. Robin Starveling, the tailor. He hail'd down oaths, that he was only mine: Star. Here, Peter Quince. And when this hail some heat from Hermia felt, Quin. Robin Starveling, you must play Thisby's So he dissolv'd, and showers of oaths did melt. mother.—Tom Snout, the tinker. I will go tell him of fair Hermia's flight;
Snout. Here, Peter Quince. Then to the wood will he, to-morrow night,
Quin. You, Pyramus's father; myself, Thisby's Pursue her; and for this intelligence
father ;--Snug, the joiner, you, the lion's part :If I have thanks, it is a dear expense :
and, I hope, here is a play fitted. But herein mean I to enrich my pain,
Snug. Have you the lion's part written? pray To have his sight thither and back again. (Exit. you, if it be, give it me, for I am slow of study. SCENE II. The same. A Room in a Cottage.
Quin. You may do it extempore, for it is nothing
but roaring. Enter Snug, Bottom, FLUTE, SNOUT, QUINCE,
Bot. Let me play the lion too: I will roar, that and STARVELING.
I will do any man's heart good to hear
I will Quin. Is all our company here?
Bot. You were best to call them generally, man exclude his inferiors from all possibility of distinction. hy man, according to the scrip.
He is therefore desirous to play Pyramus, Thisbe, and
the Lion, at the same time. I Sport.
4 Probably a burlesque upon the titles of some of our 3 In this scene Shakspeare takes advantage of his old Dramas. knowledge of the theatre, to ridicule the prejudices and 5 This passage shows how the want of women on the upetitions of the players. Bottom, who is generally old stage was supplied. If they had not a young man a kirow ledged the principal actor, declares his inclina who could perform the part with a face that might pass tion to be for a tyrant, for a part of fury, tumult, and for feminine, the character was acted in a mask, which LAP, such as every young man pants to perform when was at that time a part of a lady's dress, and so much he first appears upon the stage. The game Bottom, in use that it did not give any unusual appearance to the who seems bred in a tiring-room, has another histrioni- scene; and he that could modulate his voice to a female el passion. He is for engrossing every part, and would tone might play the woman very successfully.
roar, that I will make the dukc say, Let him roar In their gold coats spots you see ; again, Let him roar again.
Those be rubies, fairy favours, Quin. An you should do it too terribly, you would In those freckles live their savors : fright the duchess and the ladies, that they would I must go seek some dewdrops here, shriek;
and that were enough to hang us all. And hang a pearl in every cowslip's ear.' AU. That would hang us every mother's son. Farewelt, thou lobo of spirits, I'll be gone; Bot. I grant you, friends, it that you should Our queen and all her elves come here anon. fright the ladies out of their wits, they would have Puck. The king doth keep his revels here to no more discretion but to hang us : but I will ay
night; gravate my voice so, that I will roar you as gently Take heed the queen come not within his sight. as any sucking dove; I will roar you and 'twere For Oberon is passing fell and wrath, any nightingale.
Because that she, as her attendant, hath Quin. You can play no part but Pyramus : for A lovely boy, stoľn from an Indian king; Pyramus is a sweet-faced man; a proper man, as She never had so sweet a changeling : one shall see in a summer's day; à most lovely, And jealous Oberon would have the child gentleman-like man; therefore you must needs Knight of his train, to trace the forest wild: play Pyramus.
But she, perforce, withholds the loved boy, Bot. Well, I will undertake it. What beard Crowns him with flowers, and makes him all her were I best to play it in ?
joy: Quin. Why, what you will.
And now they never meet in grove, or green, Bot. I will discharge it in either your straw-co- By fountain clear, or spangled star-light sheen," loured beard, your orange-lawny beard, your pur- But they do square ; 13 thai all their elves, for féar, ple-in-grain beard, or your French-crown-colour Creep into acorn cups, and hide them there. beard, your perfect yellow.?
Fai. Either I mistake your shape and making Quin. Some of your French crowns have no hair quite, at all, and then you will play bare-faced. But, or else you are that shrewd and knavish sprite, masters, here are your parts: and I am to entreat Callid Robin Good-fellow: are you not he, you, request you, and desire you, to con them by That fright the maidens of the vill gery: io-morrow night; and meet me in the palace wood, Skim milk; and sometimes labour in the quera, '* a mile without the town, by moon-light; there will And bootless make the breathless housewife churn; we rehearse : for if we meet in the city, we shall And sometime make the drink to bear no barm;! be dogg'd with company, and our devices known. Mislead night-wanderers, laughing at their harm? In the mean time I will draw a bill of properties," Those that Hobgoblin call you, and sweet Puck, such as our play wants. I pray you, fail me not. You do their work ;16 and they shall have good luck.
Bot. We will meet ; and there we may rehearse Are not you he ? more obscenely, and courageously. Take pains ; Puck.
Thou speak'st aright; be perfect, adieu.
I am that merry wanderer of the night.' Quin. At the duke's oak we meet.
I jest to Oberon, and make him smile, Bot. Enough; Hold, or cut bow-strings.5
When I a fat and bean-fed horse beguile,
And sometime lurk I in a gossip's bowl,
In very likeness of a roasted crab;
And, when she drinks, against her lips I bob, SCENE I. AWood near Athens. Enter a Fairy And on her wither'd dew-lap pour the ale. at one door ; and Puck at another,
The wisest aunt, telling the saddest tale,
Sometime for three-foot stool mistaketh me;
Then slip I from her bum, down topples she,
And tailor cries," and falls into a cough; Over park, over pale,
And then the whole quire hold their hips, and loffe: Thorough flood, thorough fire.
And yexen' in their mirth, and neeze, and swear I do wander every where,
A merrier hour was never wasted there.Swifter than the moones sphere;
But room, Faery, here comes Oberon. And I serve the fairy queen,
Fai. And here my mistress :-'Would that he To dew her orbs upon the green:
were gone! The cowslips tall her pensioners' be ;
11 A changeling was a child changed by a fairy; it 1 Asif.
here means one stolen or got in exchange. 2 It seems to have been a custom to stain or dye the 12 Shining. beard.
13 Quarrel, For the probable cause of the use of 3 This allusion to the Corona Veneris, or baldness square for quarrel, see Mr. Douce's Illustrations, vol. I. attendant upon a particular stage of, what was then termed, the French disease, is too frequent in Shak
14 A quern was a handmill. speare, and is here explained once for all.
15 And if that the bowle or curds and creame were 4 Articles required in performing a play.
not duly set out for Robin Goodfellow, the frier, and 5 To meet whether bowstrings hold or are cut is to Sisse the dairy.maid, why then either the pottage was meet in all events. But the origin of the phrase has burnt next day in the pot, or the cheeses would not not been satisfactorily explained.
curdle, or the butter would not come, or the ale in the 6 So Drayton, in his Nymphidia, or Court of Fairy: fat never would have good head. But if a Peeterpenny, • Thorough brake, thorough briar,
or an housle-egg were behind, or a patch of tythe un. Thorough muck, ihorough mire,
paid,--then ware of bull.beggars, spirits,' &c. Thorough water, thorough fire.
16 Milton refers to these traditions in L'Allegro. 7 The orbs here mentioned are those circles in the 17 Wild apple. herbage commonly called fairy-rings, the cause of 18 Dr. Johnson thought he remembered to have heard which is not yet certainly known.
this ludicrous exclamation upon a person's seat slipping 8 The allusion is to Elizabeth's band of gentlemen from under him. He that slips from his chair falls as a pensioners, who were chosen from among the hand tailor squats upon his board. "Hanmer thought the pas. somest and tallest young men of family and fortune; sage corrupı, and proposed to read 'rails or cries." they were dressed in habits richly garnished with gold 19 The old copy reads : 'And waren in their mirth, lace.
&c.' Though a gliminering of sense may be extracted 9 in the old comedy of Doctor Dodypoll, 1600, an en. from this passage as it stands in the old copy, it seems chanter says,
most probable that we should read, as Dr. Farmer pro. 'Twas I that led you through the painted meads posed, yeren. To yer is to hiccup, and is so explained Where the lighi fairies danc'd upon the flowers, in all the old dictionaries. The meaning of the passage Hanging on every leaf an orient pearl.?
will then be, that the
objects of Puck's waggery laughed 10 Lubber or clown. Lob, lobcock, looby, and lubber, till their laughter ended in a yer or hiccup. Puck is all denote inactivity of body and dulness of mind. speaking with an affectation of ancient phraseology.
SCENE II. Enter OBERON, at one door, with his | And on old Hyems' chin, and icy crown,
Is, as in mockery, set: The spring, the summer,
The childing autumn,'° angry winter, changeli I have forsworn his bed and company. Obe. Tarry, rash wanton: Am not I thy lord? By their increase, 12 now knows not which is which: Tila. Then I must be thy lady: But I know
And this same progeny of evils comes When thou hast stol'n away from fairy land,
From our debate, from our dissension;
We are their parents and original. And in the shape of Corin sat all day,
Obe. Do you amend it then; it lies in you: Playing on pipes of corn;' and versing love To amorous Phillida. Why art thou here,
Why should Titania cross her Oberon? Come from the farthest steep of India ?
I do but beg a little changeling boy, But that, forsooth, the bouncing Amazon,
To be my henchman.13
Tita. Your buskin'd mistress, and your warrior love,
Set your heart at rest, To Theseus must be wedded; and you come
The fairy land buys not the child of me. To give their bed joy and prosperity.
His mother was a vot'ress of my order : Obe
. How, canst thou thus, for shame, Titania, And, in the spiced Indian air, by night, Glance at my credit with Hippolyta,
Full often hath she gossip'd by my side knowing I know thy love to Theseus ?
And sat with me on Neptune's yellow sands, Didst thou not lead him through the glimmering When we have laugh'd to see the sails conceive,
Marking the embarked traders on the flood; night From Perigenia, whom he ravished ?
And grow big-bellied, with the wanton wind; And make him with fair Ægle break his faith,
Which she, with pretty and with swimming gait With Ariadne, and Antiopa ??
Following (her womb, then rich with my young Tito. These are the forgeries of jealousy:
squire,) And never, since the middle summer's spring,
Would imitate; and sail upon the land, Met we on hill, in dale, forest, or mead,
To fetch me trifles, and return again, By paved fountain, or by rushy brook,
As from a voyage, rich with merchandise. Or on the beached margent of the sea,
But she, being mortal, of that boy did die i To dance our ringlets to the whistling wind,
And, for her sake, I do rear up her boy; But with thy brawls thou hast disturbid our sport.
And, for her sake, I will not part with him. Therefore the winds, piping to us in vain,
Obe. How long within this wood intend you stay? As in revenge, have suck'd up from the sea
Tita. Perchance, till after Theseus' wedding-day. Contagious fogs; which falling in the land,
If you will patiently dance in our round, Hare every pelting river made so proud,
And see our moon-light revels, go with us ; That they have overborne their continents ::
If not, shun me, and I will spare your haunts. The ox hath therefore stretch'd his yoke in vain,
Ohe. Give me that boy, and I will go with thee. The ploughman lost his sweat; and the green corn We shall chide down-right, if I longer stay:
Tita. Not for thy fairy kingdom.-Fairies, away : Hath rotted, ere his youth attain'd a beard : The fold stands empty in the drowned field,
[Ereunt TITANIA and her Train, And crows are fatted with the murrain flock;
Obe. Well, go thy way: thou shalt not from this The nine men's morrise is fill'd up with mud;
grove, And the quaint mazes in the wanton green,
Till I torment thee for this injury.-For lack of tread, are undistinguishable :
My gentle Puck, come hither: "Thou remember'st The human mortals' want their winter here ;3
Since once I sat upon a promontory,
And heard a mermaid, on a dolphin's back,
Uttering such dulcet and harmonious breath,
That the rude sea grew civil at her song ; That rheumatic diseases do abound:
And certain stars shot madly from their spheres,
To hear the sea-maid's musick. And thorough this distemperature, we see
Obe. That very time I saw (but thou could'st
Flying between the cold moon and the earth, 1 The shepherd boys of Chaucer's time had
Cupid all arm’d: a certain aim he took • Many a fioite and litling horne
At a fair vestal, 14 throned by the west; And pipes made of grene corne.' 2 See the Life of Theseus in North's Translation of Plutarch. Ægle, Ariadne, and Antiopa were all at dif. Forladen with the isycles, that dangled up and downe, Stretul times mistresses to Theseus. The name of Pe. Upon his gray and hourie beard, and snowie frozen rigune is translated by North Perigouna.
3 Spring seems to be here used for beginning. The 10 Autumn producing flowers unseasonably upon spring of day is used for the dawn of day in K. Henry those of Summer. IV. Part II.
11 The confusion of seasong here described is no more A very common epithet with our old writers, to sig: than a poetical account of the weather which happened tify paluy; palling appears to have been its original in England about the time when the Midsummer Night's tahography,
Dream was written. The date of the piece may be de. Si e. borne down the banks which contain them. termined by Churchyard's description of the same kind
6 A rural game, played by making holes in the ground of weather in his Charitie,' 1595. Shakspeare fanci. in the angles and sides of a square, and placing stones fully ascribes this distemperature of seasons to a quar. ther things upon them, according to certain rules, rel between the playful rulers of the fairy world; These figures are called nine men's morris, or merrils, Churchyard, broken down by age and misfortunes, is because each party playing has nine men; they were seriously disposed to represent ii as a judgment from berally cut upon curf, and were consequently choked the Almighty on the offences of mankind. cp rith mud io rainy seasong.
12 Produce. So in Shakspeare's 97th Sonnet; 7 Human mortals is a mere pleonasm; and is neither “The teeming Autumn, big with rich increase, pu in opposition to fairy mortals nor to human immor. Bearing the wanton burthen of the prime.' als, according to Steevens and Ritson. It is simply 13 Page of honour.
Language of a fairy speaking of men. See Mr. 14 It is well known that a compliment to Queen Eli. Dare's nlustrations, vol. i. p. 185.
zabeth was intended in this very beautiful passage. Theobald proposed to read their winter cheer.' Warburton has attempted to show, that by the mermaid 9 This singular image was probably suggested to the in the preceding lines, Mary Queen of Scots was in. pret by Golding's translation of Ovid, B. ii..
tended. It is argued with his usual fanciful ingenuity, And lastly quaking for the colde, stoode Winter all but will not bear the test of examination, and has been forlorne,
satisfactorily controverted. It appears to have been no Wah rugged head as white as dove, and garments all uncommon practice to introduce a compliment to Eli. to-lorne,
zabeth in the body of a play.
And loos'd his love-shaft smartly from his bow, Then how can it be said, I am alone,
Dem. I'll run from thee, and hide me in the Quench'd in the chaste beams of the wat'ry moon;
brakes, And the imperial vot'ress passed on,
And leave thee to the mercy of wild beasts. In maiden meditation, fancy-free.
Hel. The wildest hath noi such a heart as you. Yet mark'd I where the bolt of Cupid fell: Run when you will, the story shall be chang'd; It fell upon a little western flower,
Apollo flies, and Daphne holds the chase; Before, milk-white ; now purple with love's wound, The dove pursues the griffin ; the mild hind And maidens call it, love-in-idleness. 2
Makes speed to catch the tiger. Bootless speed! Fetch me that flower: the herb I show'd thee once : When cowardice pursues, and valour flies. The juice of it on sleeping eye-lids laid,
Dem. I will not stay thy questions ; let me go : Will make or man or woman madly dote
Or, if thou follow me, do not believe Upon the next live creature that it sees.
But I shall do thee mischief in the wood. Fetch me this herb: and be thou here again, Hel. Ay, in the temple, in the town, the field, Ere the leviathan can swim a league.
You do me mischief. Fye, Demetrius! Puck. I'll put a girdle round about the
earth Your wrongs do set a scandal on my sex In forty minutes.
(Exit Puck. We cannot fight for love, as men may do Obe.
Having once this juice, We should be wood, and were not made to woo. I'll watch Titania when she is asleep,
I'll follow thee, and make a heaven of hell, And drop the liquor of it in her eyes :
To die upon the hand I love so well. The next thing then she waking looks upon,
(Ereunt Dem, and HEL. (Be it on lion, bear, or wolf, or bull,
Obe. Fare thee well, nymph: ere he do leave On meddling monkey, or on busy ape,) She shall pursue it with the soul of love.
Thou shalt fy him, and he shall seek thy love. And ere I'take this charm off from her sight
Re-enter Puck. (As I can take it with another herb,) I'll make her render up her page to me.
Hast thou the flower there? Welcome, wanderer, But who comes here? I am invisible;
Puck. Ay, there it is. And I will overhear their conference.
I pray thee, give it me.
I know a bank whereon the wild thyme blows, Enter DEMETRIUS, Helena following him.
Where ox-lips and the nodding violet grows; Dem. I love thee not, therefore pursue me not. Quite over-canopied with luscious woodbine, Where is Lysander, and fair Hermia ?
With sweet musk-roses, and with eglantine : The one I'll slay, the other slayeth me.
There sleeps Titania, some time of the night, Thou told'st me they were stol'n into this wood, Lull'd in these flowers with dances and delight; And here am I, and wood' within this wood, And there the snake throws her enamel'd skin, Because I cannot meet with Hermia.
Weed wide enough to wrap a fairy in : Hence, get thee gone, and follow me no more. And with the juice of this I'll sureak her eyes,
Hel. You draw me, you hard-hearted adamant ;* And make her full of hateful fantasies. But yet you draw not iron, for my heart
Take thou some of it, and seek through this grove : Is true as steel; Leave you your power to draw, A sweet Athenian lady is in love And I shall have no power to follow you.
With a disdainful youth: anoint his eyes ; Dem. Do I entice you? Do I speak you fair ? But do it, when the next thing he espíes Or, rather, do I not in plainest truth
May be the lady: Thou shalt know the man Tell you—I do not, nor I cannot love you ? By the Athenian garments he hath on.
Hel. And even for that do I love you the more. Effect it with some care, that he may prove I am your spaniel; and, Demetrius,
More fond on her, than she upon her love : The more you beat me, I will fawri on you: And look thou meet me ere the first cock crow. Use me but as your spaniel, spurn me, strike me, Puck. Fear not, my lord, your servant shall do so. Neglect me, lose me; only give me leave,
(Ezewi. Unworthy as I am, to follow you. What worser place can I beg in your love,
SCENE III. Another part of the Wood. Ento (And yet a place of high respect with me,
Titania, with her train. Than to be used as you do your dog?
Tita. Come, now a roundel," and a fairy song; Dem. Tempt not too much the hatred of my Then, for the third part of a minute, bence; spirit;
Some, to kill cankers in the musk-rose buds; For I am sick, when I do look on thee.
Some, war with rear-mice'o for their leathern wings, Hel. And I am sick, when I look not on you. To make my small elves coats; and some, keep Dem. You do impeach your modesty too much
back To leave the city, and commit yourself
The clamorous owl, that nightly hoots, and wonders Into the hands of one that loves you not ;
At our quaint spirits :" Sing me now asleep; To trust the opportunity of night,
Then to your offices, and let me rest. And the ill counsel of a desert place,
SONG. With the rich worth of your virginity:
Hel. Your virtue is my privilege for that. 1 Fai. You spotted snakes, with double tongue, It is not night when I do see your face,
Thorny hedge-hogs, be not seen; Therefore I think I am not in the night :
Neuts, 12 and blindworms, 19 do no utong; Nor doth this wood lack worlds of company
Come not near our fairy queen : For you, in my respect, are all the world :
5 l. e. bring it into question. 1 Exempe from the power of love.
6 To die upon, &c. appears to have been used for ** 2 The tricolored violet, commonly called pansies, or die by the hand. heartsease, is here meant; one or two of its petals are 7 The greater cowslip. of a purple colour. It has other fanciful and expressive 8 Steevens thinks this rhyme of man and on a suti. names, such as--Cuddle me to you; Three faces under cient proof that the broad Scotch pronunciation ente a hood ; Herb trinity, &c.
prevailed in England. But our ancient poets were de 3 Mad, raving.
particular in making their rhymes correspond in soumi, 4. There is now a dayes a kind of adamant which and I very much doubt a conclusion made upon such draweth unto it fleshe, and the same so strongly, that it slender grounds. hath power to knit and tie together two mouthes of con. 9 The roundel, or round, as its name implies, was a trary persons, and draw the heart of a man out of his dance of a circular kind. bodie without offending any part of him." Certaine 10 Bats.
12 Elte. Secrete Wonders of Nature, by Edward Fenton, 1569. 13 Slow-worms.
177 CHORUS. Phuomel, with melody,
Pretty soul ! she durst not lie
Near this lack-love, this kill-courtesy.
Churl, upon thy eyes I throw
All the power this charm doth owe ::
When thou wak'st, let love forbid
Sleep his seat on thy eye-lid."
So awake, when I am gone ;
For I nust now to Oberon. (Exit. 9 Fai. Weaving spiders, come not here ; Hence, you long-legg'd spinners, hence :
Enter DEMETRIUS and HELENA, running. Bectles black, approach not near ;
Hel. Stay, though thou kill me, sweet Demetrius. Worm, nor snail, do no offence.
Dem. I charge thee, hence, and do not haunt me Chorus. Philomel, with melody, fc.
thus. 1 Fai. Hence, away; now all is well;
Hel. O, wilt thou darkling leave me? do not so. One, aloof, stand sentinel.
Dem. Stay, on thy peril; I alone will go. (Exeunt Fairies. TITANIA sleeps.
Hel. O, I am out of breath in this fond chase!
The more my prayer, the lesser is my grace.
Happy is Hermia, wheresoe'er she lies;
For she hath blessed and attractive eyes. (Squeezes the flower on Titania's eyelids. How came her eyes so bright? Not with salt tears : Do it for thy true love take; Love, and languish for his sake :
If so, my eyes are oftener wash'd than hers. Be it ounce,' or cat, or bear,
No, no, I am ás ugly as a bear;
For beasts that meet me, run away for fear :
Therefore, no marvel, though Demetrius
Do, as a monster, fly my presence thus. Wake, when some vile thing is near.
What wicked and dissembling glass of mine
[Erit. Made me compare with Hermia's sphery eyne ? Enter LYSANDER and HERMIA.
But who is here?-Lysander! on the ground ! Lys. Fair love, you faint with wandering in the Dead ? or asleep? I see no blood, no wound: wood;
Lysander, if you live, good sir, awake. And to speak troth, I have forgot our way;
Lys. And run through fire I will, for thy sweet We'll rest us, Hermia, if you think it good,
[Waking. And tarry for the comfort of the day.
Transparent Helena ; Nature shows her art," Her. Be it so, Lysander; find you out a bed, That through thy bosom makes me see thy heart. For l upon this bank will rest my head.
Where is Demetrius? O, how fit a word
Her. Nay, good Lysander ; for my sake, my dear, What though he love your Hermia? Lord, what
though? Lys. O, take the sense, sweet, of my innocence ;? Yet Hermia still loves you: then be content. Love takes the meaning, in love's conference. Lys. Content with Hermia? No: I do repent I mean, that my heart unto yours is knit;
The tedious minutes I with her have spent. So that but one heart we can make of it:
Not Hermia, but Helena I love: Two bosoms interchained with an oath;
Who will not change a raven for a dove ? So then, two bosoms, and a single troth.
The will of man is by his reason sway'd; Then, by your side no bed-room me deny; And reason says you are the worthier maid. For, lying so, Hermia, I do not lie.
Things growing are not ripe until their season : Hc. Lysander riddles very prettily :
So I, being young, till now ripe not to reason ; Now much beshrew3 my manners and my pride,
And touching now the point of human skill, I Hermia meant to say, Lysander lied.
Reason becomes the marshal to my will, Bui, gentle friend, for love and courtesy
And leads me to your eyes ; where I o'erlook Lie further off; in human modesty
Love's stories written in love's richest book. Such separation, as, may well be said,
Hel. Wherefore was I to this keen mockery born? Becomes a virtuous bachelor and a maid,
When, at your hands, did I deserve this scorn ? So far be distant; and good night, sweet friend :
Is't not enough, is't not enough, young man,
Deserve a sweet look from Demetrius' eye,
But you must flout my insufficiency? Here is my bed: Sleep give thee all his rest! Good troth, you do me wrong, good sooth, you do, Her. With half that wish the wisher's eyes be In such disdainful manner me to woo. press'd!
[They sleep. But fare you well: perforce I must confess, Enter Puck.
I thought you lord of more true gentleness.
0, that a lady, of one man refus'd, Puck. Through the forest have I gone, Should of another, therefore be abus'd! [Erit. But Athenian found I nono,
Lys. She sees not Hermia !-Hermia, sleep thou
For, as a surfeit of the sweetest things
The deepest loathing to the stomach brings;
Or, as the heresies, that men do leave,
Are hated most of those they did deceive;
5 So in Macbeth : I The small tiger, or tiger-cat.
Sleep shall neither night nor day 21. e. * understand the meaning of my innocence, or
Hang upon his pent-house lid.' by innocent meaning. Let no suspicion of ill enter ihy 6 i. e. the lesser my acceptableness, the favour I can mind.' In the conversation of those who are absured of gain. each other's kindness, not suspicion but love takes the 7 The quartos have only-Nature shews art. The Bearin.
first folio_Nature her shews art.' The second folio 3 This word implies a sinister wish, and here means changes her to here. Malone thought we should read, the same as if she had said, ' now it befall my man. Nature shews her art."
81. a do not ripen to it. 23