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Did not you tell me, I should know the man
By the Athenian garments he had on?
And so far blameless proves my enterprise,
That I have 'nointed an Athenian's
And so far am I glad it so did sort,1
As this their jangling I esteem a sport.
Obe. Thou seest, these lovers seek a place to
Hie therefore, Robin, overcast the night;
The starry welkin cover thou anon
With drooping fog, as black as Acheron ;
And lead these testy rivals so astray,
As one come not within another's
Like to Lysander sometime frame thy tongue,
Then stir Demetrius up with bitter wrong;
And sometime rail thou like Demetrius;
And from each other look thou lead them thus,
'Till o'er their brows death-counterfeiting sieep
With leaden legs and batty wings doth creep:
Then crush this herb into Lysander's eye ;
Whose liquor hath this virtuous property,
To take from thence all error, with his might,
And make his eye-balls roll with wonted sight.
When they next wake, all this derision
Shall seem a dream, and fruitless vision;
And back to Athens shall the lovers wend,3
With league, whose date till death shall never
Whiles I in this affair do thee employ,
I'll to my queen, and beg her Indian boy;
And then I will her charmed eye release
From monster's view, and all things shall be peace.
Puck. My fairy lord, this must be done with
For night's swift dragons cut the clouds full fast,
And yonder shines Aurora's harbinger ;
At whose approach, ghosts, wandering here and
Troop home to church-yards : damned spirits all,
That in cross-ways and floods have burial,
Already to their wormy beds are gone :
For fear lest day should look their shames upon,
They wilfully themselves exile from light,
And must for aye consort with black-brow'd night.
Obe. But we are spirits of another sort:
I with the morning's love 1 have oft made sport;
And, like a forester, the groves may tread,
Even till the eastern gate, all fiery red,
Opening on Neptune with fair blessed beams,
Turns into yellow gold his salt-green streams.
But, notwithstanding, haste; make no delay :
effect this business yet ere day.
Puck. Up and down, up and down ;
I will lead them up and down :
· Cephalus, the paramour of Aurora.
I am fear'd in field and town:
Goblin, lead them up and down. Here comes one.
Lys. Where art thou, proud Demetrius ? speak
thou now. Puck. Here, villain ; drawn and ready. Where
art thou ? Lys. I will be with thee straight. Puck,
Follow me then To plainer ground.
[Exit Lys. as following the voice.
Lysander! speak again.
Thou runaway, thou coward, art thou fled ?
Speak. In some bush? Where dost thou hide thy
Puck. Thou coward, art thou bragging to the
Telling the bushes that thou look'st for wars,
And wilt not come ? Come, recreant; come, thou
I'll whip thee with a rod. He is defiled,
That draws a sword on thee.
Yea; art thou there? Puck. Follow my voice; we'll try no manhood here.
Re-enter LYSANDER. Lys. He goes before me, and still dares me on; When I come where he calls, then he is gone. The villain is much lighter-heel’d than I : I follow'd fast, but faster he did fly; That fallen am I in dark uneven way, And here will rest me. Come, thou gentle day!
[lies down. For if but once thou show me thy gray light, I'll find Demetrius, and revenge this spite. (sleeps.
Re-enter PUCK and DEMETRIUS. Puck. Ho, ho! ho, ho ! Coward, why comest
Dem. Abide me, if thou darest ; for well I wot,
Thou run'st before me, shifting every place ;
And darest not stand, nor look me in the face.
Where art thou ?
Puck. Come hither; I am here.
Dem. Nay, then thou mock’st me. Thou shalt
buy this dear,
If ever I thy face by daylight see:
Now, go thy way. Faintness constraineth me
To measure out my length on this cold bed.-
By day's approach look to be visited.
[lies down and sleeps,
Hel. O weary night, O long and tedious night, Abate thy hours : shine, comforts, from the
east; That I may back to Athens, by daylight,
From these that my poor company detest :And, sleep, that sometime shuts up sorrow's eye, Steal me awhile from mine own company. (sleeps.
Puck. Yet but three ? Come one more ;
Two of both kinds makes
Here she comes, curst and sad :-
Cupid is a knavish lad,
Thus to make poor females mad.
Her. Never so weary, never so in woe,
Bedabbled with the dew, and torn with
I can no farther crawl, no farther go;
My legs can keep no pace with my desires. Here will I rest me till the break of day. Heavens shield Lysander, if they mean a fray !
Puck. On the ground
To your eye,
Gentle lover, remedy.
[squeezing the juice on Lysander's eye.