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Thrice blessed they, that master so their blood,
To undergo such maiden pilgrimage :
But "earthlier happy is the rose diftillid,
Than that, which, withering on the virgin-thorn,
Grows, lives, and dies, in single blessedness.

Her. So will I grow, so live, so die, my lord,
Ere I will yield my virgin patent up
Unto his lordship, to whose unwish'd yoke
My soul consents not to give sovereignty.

Tbe. Take time to pause : and, by the next new moon,
(The sealing-day betwixt my love and me,
For everlasting bond of fellowship)
Upon that day either prepare to die,
For disobedience to your father's will ;
Or else to wed Demetrius, as he would ;
Or on Diana's altar to protest,
For aye, austerity and single life.

Dem. Relent, sweet Hermia ;-And, Lysander, yield Thy crazed title to my certain right.

Lys. You have her father's love, Demetrius ;
Let me have * Hermia's: do you marry him.

Ege. Scornful Lysander ! true, he hath my love ;
And what is mine, my love shall render him:
And she is mine; and all my right of her
I do 'estate unto Demetrius.

Lyf. I am, my lord, as well deriv'd as he,
As well possess’d; my love is more than his ;
My fortunes every way as fairly rank'd,
If not with vantage, as Demetrius';
And, which is more than all these boasts can be,
I am belov'd of beauteous Hermia:

Heartblier happy)-more happy as to this world-earthly happier ; carlier happy. crazed ]-feeble, infirm. Hermia. eftate unto]-settle on.

Why

Why should not I then prosecute my right?
Demetrius, I'll avouch it to his head,
Made love to Nedar's daughter, Helena,
And won her soul; and she, sweet lady, dotes,
Devoutly dotes, dotes in idolatry,
Upon this spotted and inconstant man.

The. I must confess, that I have heard so much,
And with Demetrius thought to have spoke thereof;
But, being over-full of self-affairs,
My mind did lose it.—But, Demetrius, come;
And come, Egeus ; you shall

go
with

me,
I have some private schooling for you both.
For you, fair Hermia, look you arm yourself
To fit your fancies to your father's will;
Or else the law of Athens yields you up
(Which by no means we may extenuate)
To death, or to a vow of single life.-
Come, my Hippolita ; What cheer, my love ? -
Demetrius, and Egeus, go along :
I must employ you in some business
Against our nuptial; and confer with you
Of something, nearly that concerns yourselves.
Ege. With duty, and desire, we follow you.

[Exeunt Thef. Hip. Egeus, Dem. and train. Lys. How now, my love? Why is your cheek so pale ? How chance the roses there do fade so fast ?

Her. Belike, for want of rain ; which I could well
Beteem them from the tempest of mine eyes.

1.ys. Ah me! for aught that I could ever read,
Could ever hear by tale or history,
The course of true love never did run smooth.
But, either it was different in blood;

Beteem them)-discharge, pour down upon them.

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Her. O cross! too high to be enthrall’d" to low !
Lyf. Or else misgraffed, in respect of years ;
Her. O spight ! too old to be engag'd to young!
Lyf. Or else it stood upon the choice of friends :
Her. O hell! to chuse love by another's eye!

Lys. Or, if there were a sympathy in choice,
War, death, or sickness did lay siege to it;
Making it momentary as a sound,
Swift as a shadow, short as any dream ;
Brief as the lightning in the colly'd night,
That, in oa spleen, unfolds both heaven and earth,
And ere a man hath power to say,—Behold!

The jaws of darkness do devour it up:
So quick bright things come to confusion.

Her. If then true lovers have been ever cross'd,
P It stands as an edict in destiny :
Then let us teach our tryal patience,
Because it is a customary cross;
As due to love, as thoughts, and dreams, and sighs,
Wishes, and tears, poor fancy's followers.

Lys. A good persuasion ; therefore, hear me, Hermia.
I have a widow aunt, a dowager
Of great revenue, and she hath no child,
And she respects me as her only fon :
From Athens is her house P remote seven leagues,
There, gentle Hermia, may I marry thee,
And to that place the sharp Athenian law
Cannot pursue us : If thou lov'st me then,
Steal forth thy father's house to-morrow night;
And, in the wood, a league without the town,
Where I did meet thee once with Helena,

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To do observance to a morn of May,
There will I stay for thee.

Her. My good L.ysander !
I swear to thee, by Cupid's strongest bow;
By his best arrow with the golden head;
By the simplicity of Venus' doves;
By that which knitteth souls, and prospers loves ;
And by that fire which burn'd the Carthage queen,
When the false Trojan under fail was seen ;
By all the vows that ever men have broke,
In number more than ever women spoke ;-
In that same place thou hast appointed me,
To-morrow truly will I meet with thee.
Lys. Keep promise, love: Look, here comes Helena

Enter Helena.
Her. God fpeed, 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 air
More tuneable than lark to shepherd's ear,
When wheat is green, when haw-thorn buds appear.
Sickness is catching; O, were 'favour so!
Yours 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 melody.
Were the world mine, Demetrius being " bated,
The rest I'll give to be to you " translated.
O, teach me how you look; and with what art
You sway the motion of Demetrius' heart.

Her. I frown upon him, yet he loves me still,

fair :]-fairness, is enamoured of your charms. slode-ftars ;]-leading, pole-stars. · favour)-resemblance in features, air, lock, speech, gesture. bated,]-excepted. w translated.]-transformed.

Hel.

Hel. Oh, that your frowns would teach

frowns would teach my smiles such
skill!
Her. I give him curses, yet he gives me love.
Hel. Oh, 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.
Her. His folly, Helena, is * no fault of mine,
Hel. None. - But your beauty ;-'Would that fault

were mine!
Her. Take comfort ; he no more shall see my face;
Lysander and myself will fly this place.
Before the time I did Lysander see,
Seem'd Athens as a paradise to me :
O then, what graces in my love do dwell,
That he hath turn'd a heaven unto a hell !

Lys. Helen, to you our minds we will unfold:
To-morrow night, when Phæbe doth behold
Her silver visage in the watry glass,
Decking with liquid pearl the bladed grass,
(A time that lovers' flights doth still conceal)
Through Athens' gates have we devis’d to steal.

Her. And in the wood, where often you and I
Upon faint primrose-beds were wont to lye,
Emptying our bofoms of their counsels ' sweet ;
There my Lysander and myself shall meet :
And thence, from Athens, turn away our eyes,
To seek new friends and a stranger companies.
Farewel, 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 : none of mine. y swell’d.

strange companions.

As

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