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your wit :

you please,

Mar. At the twelvemonth's end,
I'll change my black gown for a faithful friend.

Long. I'll stay with patience; but the time is long.
Mar. The liker you; few taller are so

Biron. Studies my lady? mistress, look on me,
Behold the window of my heart, mine eye;
What humble fuit attends thy answer there;
Impose some service on me for thy love.
Rof. Oft have I heard of

you, my lord Biron,
Before I saw you; and the world's large tongue
Proclaims you for a man replete with mocks,
Full of comparisons, and wounding flouts;
Which you on all estates will execute;
That lie within the


To weed, this wormwood from your fruitful brain,
And, therewithal to win


(Without the which I am not to be won)
You shall this twelvemonth-term from day to day
Visit the speechless fick, and still converse
With groaning wretches; and your

task shall be,
With all the fierce endeavour of your wit,
T' enforce the pained impotent to smile.

Biron. To move wild laughter in the throat of death?
It cannot be; it is impossible:
Mirth cannot move a soul in agony.

Ros: Why, that's the way to choke a gibing spirit,
Whose influence is begot of that loose grace,
Which shallow laughing hearers give to fools:
A jest's prosperity lies in the ear
Of him that hears it, never in the tongue
Of him that makes it: then, if fickly ears,
Deaft with the clamours of their own dear groáns,
Will hear your idle scorns, continue then,
And I will have you, and that fault withal :
But, if they will not, throw

that spirit,

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And I shall find you empty of that fault,
Right joyful of your

Biron. A twelvemonth? well, befall what will befall,
I'll jest a twelvemonth in an hospital.
Prin. Ay, sweet my lord, and so I take my leave.

[to the king. King. No, madam; we will bring you on your way.

Biron. Our wooing doth not end like an old play;
Jack hath not Jill; these ladies' courtesy
Might well have made our sport a comedy.

King. Come, sir, it wants a twelvemonth and a day,
And then 'twill end.

Biron. That's too long for a play.

Enter Armado.
Arm. Sweet majesty, vouchsafe me —
Prin. Was not that Hector ?
Dum. The worthy knight of Troy.

Arm. I will kiss thy royal finger, and take leave. I am a votary; I have vow'd to Jaquenetta to hold the plough for her sweet love three years. But, most esteemed greatness, will you hear the dialogue that the two learned men have compiled, in praise of the owl and the cuckoo? it should have follow'd in the end of our show.

King. Call them forth quickly; we will do so.
Arm. Holla, approach !

Enter all.
This side is Hiems, winter :
This Ver, the spring: the one maintain’d by the owl,
The other by the cuckoo.

Ver, begin.


The Song

When daisies pied, and violets blue,

And lady-smocks all filver white,
And cuckoo buds of yellow hue,

Do paint the meadows with delight,
The cuckoo then on every tree
Mocks married men; for thus fings be,

Cuckoo, cuckoo : 0 word of fear,

Unpleafing to a married ear !
When shepherds pipe on oaten straws,

And merry larks are ploughmens clocks,
When turtles tread, and rooks, and daws,

And maidens bleach their summer smocko,
The cuckoo then on every tree
Mocks married men; for thus fings he,

Cuckoo, Cuckoo : 0 word of fear,
Unpleasing to a married ear!

When isicles hang by the wall,

And Dick the shepherd blows his nail,
And Tom bears logs into the hall,

And milk comes frozen home in pail,
When blood is nipt, and ways be foul,
Then nightly fings the staring owl
Tu-whit, to-who;

A merry note,

While greasy Jone doth keel the pot.
When all aloud the wind doth blow,

And coughing drowns the parson's law,
And birds sit brooding in the snow,

And Marian's nose looks red and raw,

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When roasted crabs biss in the bowl,
Then nightly fings the

faring owl,
Tu-whit, to-wbo;

A merry note,
While greasy Jone doth keel the pot.

Arm. The words of Mercury
Are harsh after the songs of Apollo :
You, that way; we, this way.

[Exeunt omnes.

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