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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 ripe' 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 anner 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 ! [Exit.
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!

T.e. do not ripen to io

And all my powers, address your love and might,
To honor Helen, and to be her knight! [Exit.
Her. [Starting.] Help me, Lysander, help me!

Do thy best
To pluck this crawling serpent from my breast !
Ah me, for pity ! - What a dream was here !
Lysander, look, how I do quake with fear.
Methought a serpent ate my heart away,
And you sat smiling at his cruel prey.--
Lysander! What, removed ? Lysander! Lord !
What, out of hearing ? Gone ? No sound, no word ?
Alack, where are you? Speak, an if you hear ,
Speak, of all loves ; ' I swoon almost with fear.
No?_Then I well perceive you are not nigh.
Either death, or you, I'll find immediately. [Exit.



SCENE I. The same. The Queen of Fairies lying


Enter QUINCE, SNUG, Bottom, FLUTE, Snout, and

STARVELING. 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 house ; and we will do it in action, as we will do it before the duke.

Bot. Peter Quince,-
Quin. What say'st thou, bully Bottom ?

Bot. There are things in this comedy of Pyramus and Thisby, that will never please. First, Pyramus

| By all that is dear.

must draw a sword to kill himself; which the ladies cannot abide. How answer you that?

Snout. By'n akin, 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 swords; and that Pyramus is not killed indeed; and for the more better assurance, tell them, that I Pyramus am not Pyramus, but Bottom the weaver. This will put them out of fear. Quin. Well

, we will have such a prologue; and it shall be written in eight and six.?

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 consider with yourselves. To bring in—God shield 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 same defect,-Ladies, or fair ladies, I would wish you, or, I would request you, or, I would entreat you, not to fear, not to tremble: my life for yours. If you think I come hither as a lion, it were pity of my life. No, I am no such thing; I am a man as other men are. And there, indeed, let him name his name; and tell them plainly he is Snug the joiner.

Quin. Well, it shall be so. But there is two hard things; that is, o bring the moon-light into a chamber; for you know, Pyramus and Thisby meet by moonlight.

1 Perilous; used for alarming, amazing. 2 That is, i : alternate verses of eight and six syllables

Snug. Doth the moon shine that night we play our play?

Bot. A calendar, a calendar! Look in the almanac; find out moon-shine, find out moon-shine.

Quin. Yes, it doth shine that night.

Bot. Why, then you may leave a casement of the great chamber window, where we play, open; and the. moon may shine in at the casement.

Quin. Ay; or else one must come in with a bush of thorns and a lanthorn, and say, he comes to disfigure, or to present, the person of moon-shine. Then, there is another thing. We must have a wall in the great chamber; for Pyramus and Thisby, says the story, did talk through the chink of a wall.

Snug. You never can bring in a wall.—What say

you, Bottom?

Bot. Some man or other must present wall: and let him have some plaster, or some loam, or some rough-cast about him, to signify wall; or let him hold his fingers thus, and through that cranny shall Pyramus and Thisby whisper.

Quin. If that may be, then all is well. Come, sit down, every mother's son, and rehearse your parts. Pyramus, you begin. When you have spoken your speech, enter into that brake,' and so everyone according to his cue.

Enter Puck behind.
Puck. What hempen home-spuns have we swag.

gering here,
So near the cradle of the fairy queen ?
What, a play toward? I'll be an auditor ;
An actor, too, perhaps, if I see cause.

Quin. Speak, Pyramus.—Thisby, stand forth.
Pyr. Thisby, the flowers of odious savors sweet,-
Quin. Odors, odors.

| Thicket.

Pyr. -odors savors sweet :

So hath thy breath, my dearest Thisby dear.But, hark, a voice! Stay thou but here awhile, And by and by I will to thee appear.

[Exit. Puck. A stranger Pyramus than e’er played here!

[ Aside.Exii This. Must I speak now?

Quin. Ay, marry, must you ; for you must understand, he goes but to see a noise that he heard, and is to come again.

This. Most radiant Pyramus, most lily-white of hue,

Of color like the red rose on triumphant brier, Most brisky juvenal,' and eke most lovely Jew,

As true as truest horse, that yet would never tire, I'll meet thee, Pyramus, at Ninny's tomb.

Quin. Ninus' tomb, man. Why, you must not speak that yet; that you answer to Pyramus. You speak all your part at once, cues ? and all.—Pyramus, enter; your cue is past; it is, never tire.

Re-enter Puck, and Bottom with an ass's head. This. 0As true as truest horse, that yet would

never tire. Pyr. If I were fair, Thisby, I were only thine.-

Quin. O monstrous ! O strange! we are haunted. Pray, masters! fly, masters! help! [Exeunt Clowns.

Puck. I'll follow you, I'll lead you about a round, Through bog, through bush, through brake, through

brier: Sometime a horse I'll be, sometime a hound,

A hog, a headless bear, sometime a fire; And neigh, and bark, and grunt, and roar, and burn, Like horse, hound, hog, bear, fire, at every turn.

[Exit. Bot. Why do they run away? This is a knavery of them, to make me afeard.

1 Young man.

2 The cues were the last words of the preceding speech, which serve as a hint to him who was to speak next.

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