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Quite over-canopied with luscious woodbine,
With sweet musk-roses, and with eglantine.
There sleeps Titania, some time of the night,
Lulled in these flowers with dances and delight;
And there the snake throws her enameled skin,
Weed wide enough to wrap a fairy in:
And with the juice of this I'll streak her eyes,
And make her full of hateful fantasies.
Take thou some of it, and seek through this grove.
A sweet Athenian lady is in love
With a disdainful youth: anoint his eyes;
But do it, when the next thing he espies
May be the lady. Thou shalt know the man
By the Athenian garments he hath on.
Effect it with some care, that he may prove
More fond on her, than she upon her love;
And look thou meet me ere the first cock crow.
Puck. Fear not, my lord, your servant shall do so.
SCENE III. Another Part of the Wood.
Enter TITANIA, with her Train.
Tita. Come, now a roundel,' and a fairy song, Then, for the third part of a minute, hence; Some, to kill cankers in the musk-rose buds; Some, war with rear-mice for their leathern wings, To make my small elves coats; and some, keep back The clamorous owl, that nightly hoots, and wonders At our quaint spirits.3 Sing me now asleep; Then to your offices, and let me rest.
1 Fai. You spotted snakes, with double tongue, Thorny hedge-hogs, be not seen;
Newts, and blindworms,5 do no wrong;
Come not near our fairy queen.
1 The roundel, or round, as its name implies, was a dance in a ring. 2 Bats. 3 Sports. 4 Efts.
CHORUS. Philomel, with melody,
Sing in our sweet lullaby ;
Lulla, lulla, lullaby; lulla, lulla, lullaby;
Never harm, nor spell nor charm,
Come our lovely lady nigh;
So, good night, with lullaby.
2 Fai. Weaving spiders, come not here;
Hence, you long-legg'd spinners, hence.
Beetles black, approach not near ;
Worm, nor snail, do no offence.
CHORUS. Philomel, with melody, &c.
1 Fai. Hence, away; now all is well. One, aloof, stand sentinel.
[Exeunt Fairies. TITANIA sleeps.
Obe. What thou seest when thou dost wake, [Squeezes the flower on TITANIA's eyelids. Do it for thy true love take. Love, and languish for his sake. Be it ounce, or cat, or bear, Pard, or boar with bristled hair, In thy eye that shall appear When thou wak'st, it is thy dear. Wake, when some vile thing is near.
And to speak troth, I have forgot our way;
We'll rest us, Hermia, if you think it good,
And tarry for the comfort of the day.
Enter LYSANDER and HERMIA.
Lys. Fair love, you faint with wandering in the wood;
Her. Be it so, Lysander; find you out a bed, For I upon this bank will rest my head.
Lys. One turf shall serve as pillow for us both;
One heart, one bed, two bosoms, and one troth.
Her. Nay, good Lysander; for my sake, my dear,
Lie farther off yet; do not lie so near.
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 farther 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!
Her. With half that wish the wisher's eyes be
Puck. Through the forest have I gone,
But Athenian found I none,
On whose eyes I might approve
This flower's force in stirring love.
Night and silence! Who is here?
Weeds of Athens he doth wear.
This is he, my master said,
Despised the Athenian maid;
1 i. e. "understand the meaning of my innocence, or my innocent meaning. Let no suspicion of ill enter thy mind."
This word here means the same as if she had said, "Now ill befall my manners," &c.
And here the maiden, sleeping sound,
On the dank and dirty ground.
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.1
When thou wak'st, let love forbid
Sleep his seat on thy eyelid.
So awake, when I am gone;
For I must now to Oberon.
Enter DEMETRIUS and HELENA, running.
Hel. Stay, though thou kill me, sweet Demetrius.
Dem. I charge thee, hence, and do not haunt me thus.
Hel. O, wilt thou darkling leave me? Do not so.
Dem. Stay, on thy peril; I alone will go.
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.
How came her eyes so bright? Not with salt tears;
If so, my eyes are oftener washed 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 dissembling glass of mine
Made me compare with Hermia's sphery eyne?
But who is here?-Lysander! On the ground!
Dead? Or asleep? I see no blood, no wound.
Lysander, if you live, good sir, awake.
Lys. And run through fire I will, for thy sweet
Transparent Helena! Nature shows her art,
That through thy bosom makes me see thy heart.
2 The quartos have only "Nature shows art." The first folio-"Nature her shows art." The second folio changes her to here. Malone thought we should read, "Nature shows her art."
Where is Demetrius? O, how fit a word
Is that vile name to perish on my sword!
Hel. Do not say so, Lysander; say not so.
What though he love your Hermia? Lord, what though?
Yet Hermia still loves you. Then be content.
Lys. Content with Hermia? No. I do repent
The tedious minutes I with her have spent.
Not Hermia, but Helena now I love.
Who will not change a raven for a dove?
The will of man is by his reason swayed;
And reason says you are the worthier maid.
Things growing are not ripe until their season:
So, I, being young, till now ripe1 not to reason;
And touching now the point of human skill,
Reason becomes the marshal to my will,
And leads me to your eyes; where I o'erlook
Love's stories written in love's richest book.
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 insufficiency?
Good troth, you do me wrong, good sooth, you do,
In such disdainful manner me to woo.
But fare you well. Perforce I must confess,
I thought you lord of more true gentleness.
O, that a lady, of one man refused,
Should of another, therefore, be abused!
Lys. She sees not Hermia!-Hermia, sleep thou
And never mayst thou come Lysander near!
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;
So thou, my surfeit, and my heresy,
Of all be hated; but the most of me!
1 i. e. do not ripen to it.