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son, all the parts in their various modes are well written, and give the kind of pleasure which the author designed. Fairies in his time were much in fashion: common tradition had made them familiar, and Spenser's poem had made them great.'


Oberon, king of the fairies, requests his queen Titania to bestow on him a favorite page to execute the office of train. bearer; which she refusing, he, in revenge, moistens her eyes during sleep with a certain liquor, which possesses the singular property of enamoring her of the first person she sees the object which her eyes first encounter is an ignorant Athenian weaver, named Bottom, who, together with his associates, are preparing to represent a play at the approaching nuptials of Theseus and Hippolyta; when a waggish spirit of Oberon, named Puck, covers Bottom with the head of an ass ;-a transformation, which terrifies the rustic swains, and fulfils the intention of his master, in the dotage of his queen. During this period, a young couple, Lysander and Hermia, flying from a cruel father, and the rigor of the Athenian laws, which forbid their union, enter the enchanted wood, whither they are pursued by Demetrius, whose suit is favored by the father of the fugitive damsel, and who is himself beloved by another lady following him, named Helena, whom he treats with disdain. Oberon, in pity to Helena, commands Puck to anoint the eyes of the churlish Demetrius with the charmed liquor during sleep; but he by mistake enchants Lysander. Demetrius soon after becomes the subject of the same operation, while Helena is presented to each of the awakened lovers: the object of their affections becomes now instantly changed, and the hitherto favored Hermia is rejected by both; till Oberon at length disenchants Lysander, restores the weaver to his pristine form, and becomes reconciled to his queen. The play concludes with the union of Hippolyta to Theseus, by whose mediation the father of Hermia consents to his daughter's marriage with Lysander, while Demetrius becomes the husband of Helena.

THESEUS, duke of Athens.
EGEUS, father to Hermia.



in love with Hermia.


PHILOSTRATE, master of the revels to Theseus.

QUINCE, the carpenter.

SNUG, the joiner.

BOTTOM, the weaver.
FLUTE, the bellows-mender.

SNOUT, the tinker.

STARVELING, the tailor.


HIPPOLYTA, queen of the Amazons, betrothed to Theseus.
HERMIA, daughter to Egeus, in love with Lysander.
HELENA, in love with Demetrius.



OBERON, king of the fairies.

TITANIA, queen of the fairies.









characters in the interlude performed by the clowns.

Other fairies attending their king and queen.
Attendants on Theseus and Hippolyta.

SCENE, Athens, and a wood not far from it.




Athens. A room in the palace of Theseus. Enter THESEUS, HIPPOLYTA, PHILOSTRATE, Attendants.

The. Now, fair Hippolyta, our nuptial hour Draws on apace; four happy days bring in Another moon: but, O, methinks, how slow This old moon wanes! she lingers my desires, Like to a step-dame or a dowager,


Long withering out a young man's revenue.

Hip. Four days will quickly steep themselves in nights;

Four nights will quickly dream away the time;
And then the moon, like to a silver bow
New bent in heaven, shall behold the night
Of our solemnities.


Go, Philostrate,

Stir up the Athenian youth to merriments;
Awake the pert and nimble spirit of mirth ;
Turn melancholy forth to funerals:

The pale companion is not for our pomp.—

[Exit Philostrate. Hippolyta, I woo'd thee with my sword, And won thy love, doing thee injuries; But I will wed thee in another key, With pomp, with triumph,1 and with revelling.

Enter EGEUS, HERMIA, LYSAnder, and demetrius. Ege. Happy be Theseus, our renowned duke! The. Thanks, good Egeus. What's the news with thee?

Ege. Full of vexation come I, with complaint Against my child, my daughter Hermia.Stand forth, Demetrius.-My noble lord, This man hath my consent to marry her :Stand forth, Lysander;-and, my gracious duke, This hath bewitch'd the bosom of my child. Thou, thou, Lysander, thou hast given her rhymes, And interchanged love-tokens with my child: Thou hast by moonlight at her window sung, With feigning voice, verses of feigning love; And stolen the impression of her fantasy With bracelets of thy hair, rings, gawds, conceits, Knacks, trifles, nosegays, sweetmeats; messengers Of strong prevailment in unharden'd youth: With cunning hast thou filch'd my daughter's heart; Turn'd her obedience, which is due to me,

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