Obrázky stránek

Now much befhrew my manners, and my pride,
If Hermia meant to fay, Lyfander ly'd.
But, gentle friend, for love and courtesy
Lye further off: in human modesty
Such feparation, as, may well be said,
Becomes a virtuous batchelor and a maid:

So far be distant; and good night, sweet friend:
Thy love ne'er alter, till thy fweet life end!

Lyf. Amen, amen, to that fair prayer, fay I;
And then end life, when I end loyalty!
Here is my bed: Sleep give thee all his reft!

Her. With half that wish the wifher's eyes be prefs'd!
[They fleep.

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

Enter Puck.

Puck. Through the forest have I gone,
But Athenian found I none,
On whofe eyes I might' approve
This flower's force in ftirring love.
Night and filence! who is here?
Weeds of Athens he doth wear:
This is he, my master said,
Despised the Athenian maid;
And here the maiden, fleeping found,
On the dank and dirty ground,
Pretty foul! the durft not lye
Near this lack-love, this kill-court'fy.
Churl, upon thy eyes I throw
All the power this charm doth 'owe:
When thou wak'ft, let love forbid
Sleep his feat on thy eye-lid.
So awake, when I am gone;
For I must now to Oberon.

[merged small][ocr errors]


approve]-make trial of.


[ocr errors]

Enter Demetrius and Helena running.

Hel. Stay, though thou kill me, fweet Demetrius.
Dem. I charge thee, hence, and do not haunt me thus.
Hel. O, wilt thou 'darkling leave me? do not fo.
Dem. Stay on thy peril; I alone will go.

[Exit Demetrius.
Hel. O, I am out of breath, in this fond chace!
The more my prayer, "the leffer is my grace.
Happy is Hermia, wherefoe'er fhe lies;
For the hath bleffed, and attractive eyes.


How came her eyes fo bright? Not with falt tears :
If so, my eyes are oftner wash'd than hers.
No, no, I am as 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.
What wicked and diffembling glass of mine
Made me compare with Hermia's "fphery eyne?—
But who is here? Lyfander! on the ground!
Dead? or afleep? I fee no blood, no wound :-
Lyfander, if you live, good fir, awake.

Lyf. And run through fire I will, for thy fweet fake.


Transparent Helena! Nature here shews art,
That through thy bofom makes me fee thy heart.
Where is Demetrius? Oh, how fit a word
Is that vile name, to perish on my fword!

Hel. Do not fay fo, Lyfander; fay not so:
What though he love your Hermia? Lord, what though?
Yet Hermia ftill loves you: then be content.

darkling]-in the dark.

the leffer is my grace.]-the lefs favourably am I received.
Sphery syn?-eyes bright as the ftars,


Lyf. Content with Hermia? No: I do repent
The tedious minutes I with her have spent.
Not Hermia now, but Helena I love:
Who will not change a raven for a dove?
The will of man is by his reafon fway'd;
And reafon fays, you are the worthier maid.
Things growing are not ripe until their feafon;
So I, being young, till now ripe not to reason;
And touching now the point of human skill,
Reason becomes the marshall to my will,
And leads me to your eyes; where I o'erlook
Love's stories, written in love's richest book.

[ocr errors]

Hel. Wherefore was I to this keen mockery born?
When, at your hands, did I deserve this scorn?
Is't not enough, is't not enough, young man,
That I did never, no, nor never can,
Deserve a sweet look from Demetrius' eye,
But you must flout my infufficiency?

Good troth, you do me wrong, good footh, you do,
In fuch difdainful manner me to woo.

But fare you well: perforce I must confefs,
I thought you lord of more true 2 gentleness.
Oh, that a lady, of one man refus'd,
Should, of another, therefore be abus'd!


Lyf. She fees not Hermia :-Hermia, fleep thou there; And never may'ft thou come Lyfander near! For, as a furfeit of the sweetest things, The deepest loathing to the stomach brings; Or, as the herefies, that men do leave, Are hated most of those they did deceive;

* touching now the point of human skill, &c.]-my fenfes being arrived at their full perfection, my will now follows reafon.


z gentleness.]-generofity, poffeffed more of the fpirit of a gentle



So thou, my furfeit, and my heresy,
Of all be hated; but the most, of me!
And all my powers, address your love and might,
To honour Helen, and to be her knight!


Her. [ftarting from fleep.] Help me, Lyfander, help me! do thy best,

To pluck this crawling ferpent from my breast!
Ay me, for pity!-what a dream was here?
Lyfander, look, how I do quake with fear :
Methought, a ferpent eat my heart away,
And you fat smiling at his cruel prey :—
Lyfander! what, remov'd? Lyfander! lord!
What, out of hearing? gone? no found, no word?
Alack, where are you? speak, an if you hear;
Speak, of all loves; I fwoon almost with fear.
No?-then I well perceive you are not nigh:
Or death, or you, I'll find immediately.



The Wood.

Enter Quince, Snug, Bottom, Flute, Snowt, and Starveling. The Queen of Fairies lying afleep.

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 tyring-houfe; and we will do it in action, as we will do it before the duke.


all loves ;]-I adjure you, as you love me; by all means. Pat, Pat ;]-moft opportunely.


• brake]-thicket, or bush.


Bot. Peter Quince,

Quin. What fay'ft thou, bully Bottom?

Bot. There are things in this comedy of Pyramus and Thisby, that will never please. First, Pyramus must draw a fword to kill himself; which the ladies cannot abide. How answer you that?

Snout. By'rlakin, 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 fwords; and that Pyramus is not kill'd indeed: and, for the more better affurance tell them, that I Pyramus am not Pyramus, but Bottom the weaver: This will put them out of fear.

Quin. Well, we will have fuch a prologue; and it shall be written in eight and fix.


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.

Bot. Masters, you ought to confider with yourselves; to bring in, God fhield 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 fame defect,-Ladies, or fair ladies, I would wifh you, or, I would request you, or, I would entreat you, not to fear, not to tremble:

By'rlakin, a parlous fear.]-ladykin, or little lady, a perilous fear. eight and fix.]-lines, or the meafure ufed in fonnets.


« PředchozíPokračovat »