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no true Athenian. I will tell you every thing, | play is preferred, In any case, let Thisby right as it fell out.

have clean linen; and let not him, that plays Quin. Let us hcar, sweet Bottom.

the lion, pare his nails, for they shall hang out Bot. Not a word of me. All that I will for the lion's claws. And, most dear actors, tell yon, is, that the duke hath dined : Get eat nu onions, nor garlick, for we are to utter your apparel together ; good strings to your sweet breath; and I do not doubt, but to hear beards, new ribbons to your pumps; meet them say, it is a sweet comedy. No more presently at the palace; every man look o'er words; away; go, away. his part; for, the short and the long is, our


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ACT V. SCENE I. The same. An Apartment in The. Say, what abridgment; have you for the Palace of Theseus.

this evening?


What mask? what music? How shall we beEnter THESEUS, HIPPOLYTA, Philo.

The lazy time, if not with some delight?
STRATE, Lords, and Attendants.

Philos. There is a brierý, how many sports Hip. 'Tis strange, my Theseus, that these are ripe; lovers speak of.

[believe Make choice of which your highness will see The. More strange than true. I never may first.

(Giving ( paper. These antique fables, nor these fairy toys. The, reads.] The battle with the Centuurs, Lovers, and madmen, have such seething brains,

to be sung Such shaping fantasies, that apprehend

By an Athenian eunuch to the harp. More than cool reason ever comprehends. We'll none of that: that I have told my love, The lunatic, the lover, and the poet,

In glory of my kinsman Hercules. Are of imagination all compact * :

The riot of the tipsy Bucchanals, One sees more devils than vast hell can hold; Tearing the Thracian singer in their rage, That is, the madman: the lover, all as frantic,

hat is an old device; and it was play'd Sees Helen's beauty in a brow of Egypt:

When I from Thebes came last a conqueror. The poet's eye, in a fine frenzy rolling,

The thrice three Muses mourning for the Doth glance from heaven to earth, from earth death And, as imagination bodies forth (to heaven; Of learning, late deceas'd in beggary. The forms of things unknown, the poet's pen

That is some satire, keen, and critical, 51 Turns them to shapes, and gives to airy nothing Not sorting with a nuptial ceremony. A local habitation, and a name.

A tedious brief scene of young Pyramus, Soch tricks hath strong imagination;

And his love Thisbe ; very tragical mirth. That, if it would but apprehend some joy, Merry and tragical? Tedious and brief? It comprehends some bringer of that joy ; Thai is, hot ice, and wonderous strange snow. Or, in the night, imagining some fear,

How shall we find the concord of this discord ? How easy is a bush suppos'd a bear? (over,

Philost. A play there is, my lord, some ten Hip. But all the story of the night told

words long; And all their minds transtigur’d so together,

Which is as brief as I have known a play; More witnesseth than fancy's images,

But by ten words, my lord, it is too long; grows to something of great constancy t; Which makes it tedions : for in all the play But, howsoever, strange, and admirable. There is not one word apt, one player fitted. Enter LYSANDER, DEMETRIUS, HERMIA, And tragical, my noble lord, it is; and HELENA.

For Pyramus therein doth kill himself. The. Here come the lovers, full of joy and Which, when I saw rehears'd, I must confess, mirth.

Made mine eyes water ; but more merry tears Joy, gentle friends! joy, and fresh days of love, The passion of loud laughter never

shed. Accompany your hearts !

The. What are they, that do play it?

More than to us Philost. Hard-handed men, that work in Wait on your royal walks, your board, your

Athens here, bed!

[shall we have, Which never labour'd in their minds till now; The. Come now; what masks, what dances And now have toild their unbreath'd || meTo wear away this long age of three hours,

mories Between our after-supper, and bed-time? With this same play, against your nuptial. Where is our nsual manager of mirth?

The. And we will hear it. What revels are in hand? Is there no play,


No, my noble lord, To ease the anguish of a torturing hour ? It is not for you: I have heard it over,

And it is nothing, nothing in the world;
Here, mighty Theseus. Unless you can find sport in their intents,
* Are made of mere imagination, + Stability I Pastime.
Short account.

It Unexercised.



Call Philostrate.



Extremely stretch'd, and conn'd with cruel“ This man, with lime and rough-cast, doth To do you service.

(pain, present

(lovers sunder: The.

I will hear that play; " Wall, that vile wall which did these For never any thing can be amiss,

« And through wall's chink, poor souls, they When simpleness and duty tender it.

are content

(wonder. Go, bring them in;-and take your places, “ To whisper ; at the which let no man ladies.

[Exit PhiloSTRATE. “ This man, with lantern, dog, and bush of Hip. I love not to see wretchedness o'er- thorn,

[know, And duty in his service perishing. [charg’d, “ Presenteth moon shine: for, if you will The. Why, gentle sweet, you shall see no “ By moon-shine did these lovers think no such thing. [kind.

(woo. Hip. He says, they can do nothing in this To meet at Ninus' tomb, there, there to The. The kinder we, to give them thanks“ This grisly beast, which by name lion highti, for nothing.

“ The trusty Thisby, coming first by niglat, Our sport shall be, to take what they mistake: “ Did scare away, or rather did affright: And what poor duty cannot do,

" And, as she fled, her mantle she did fall; Noble respect takes it in might, not merit. “ Which lion vile with bloody mouth did Where I havecome, great clerks bave purposed


(tall, To greet me with premeditated welcomes; “ Anon comes Pyramus, sweet youth, and Where I bave seen them shiver and look pale, “ And finds his trusty Thisby's mantle Make periods in the midst of sentences,

slain :

(blade, Throttle their practis'd accent in their fears, “ Whereat with blade, with bloody blameful And, in conclusion, dumbly have broke off, “ He bravely broach'd his boiling bloody Not paying me a welcome : Trust me, sweet,

breast; Out of this silence, yet, I pick'd a welcome; And, Thisby tarrying in mulberry shade, And in the modesty of fearful duty

“ His dagger drew, and died. For all the I read as much, as from the rattling tongue


[twain, Of saucy and audacions eloquence.

" Let lion, moon-shine, wall, and lovers Love, therefore, and tongue-tied simplicity, At large discourse, while here they do reIn least, speak most, to my capacity.

main." Enter PhiloSTRATE.

eunt Prol.THISBE, Lion, and Moonshine.

The. I wonder, if the lion be to speak. Philost. So please your grace, the prologue is addrest *.

Dem. No wonder, my lord: one lion may,

(pets. The. Let him approach. (Flourish of trum

when many asses do.

Wall. “ In this same interlude, it doth beEnter Prologue.


(wall: Pro. If we offend, it is with our good will. “ That I, one Snout by name, present a That you should think, we come not to “ And such a wall, as I would have you offend,

think, But with good will. To shew our simple skill, " That had in it a cranny'd hole, or chink,

That is the true beginning of our end. " Through wliich the lovers, Pyramus and Consider then, we come but in despite.

Thisby, We do not come as minding to content you, “ Did whisper often very secretly. Our true intent is. All for your delight, “ This loam, this rough-cast, and this stone, We are not here. That you should here

doth show repent you,

“ That I am that same wall; the truth is so : The actors are at hand; and, by their show," And this the cranny is, right and sinister, You shall know all,that you are like to know. “ Through which the fearful lovers are to

The. This fellow doth not stand upon points. whisper.”

Lys. He hath rid bis prologue, like a rough The. Would you desire lime and hair to colt, he knows not the stop. A good moral,

speak betier? my lord : It is not enough to speak, but to Dem. It is the wittiest partition that ever I speak true.

heard discourse, my lord. Hip. Indeed he hath played on this pro- The. Pyramus draws near the wall: silence! logue, like a child on a recordert; a sound,

Enter PYRAMUS. but not in government.

Pyr. “ O grim-look'd night! 0 night with The. His speech was like a tangled chain; hue so black ! nothing impaired, but all disordered. Whó O night, which ever art, when day is not! is next?

“ O night, Ó night, alack, alack, alack, Enter PYRAMUS and THISBE, Wall, Moon- “ I fear my Thisby's promise is forgot!

shine, and Lion, as in dumb show. “ And thou, ó wall, sweet, O lovely wall, Prol. “'Gentles, perchance, you wonder at “ That stand'st between her father's ground this show; [plain. and mine ;

(wall, " But wonder on, till truth make all things “ Thou wall, 0 wall, O sweet and lovely “ This man is Pyramus, if you would know; “ Show me thy chink, to blink through with “ This beauteous lady Thisby is, certain. mine eyne. [Wall holds up his fingers. • Ready. + A musical instrument.


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the goose:

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“ Thanks, courteous wall: Jove shield thee |“ May now, perchance, both quake and tremwell for this!

ble here, “ But what see I? No Thisby do I see. " When lion rough in wildest rage doth “ O wicked wall, through whom I see no roar.

[am bliss;

(me!" " Then know, that I, one Snug the joiner, “ Curst be thy stones for thus deceiving " A lion fell, nor else no lion's dam : The. Tbe wall, methinks, being sensible, “ For if I should as lion come in strife should curse again.

“ Into this place, 'twere pity on my life.” Pyr. No, in truth, sir, he should not. De

The. A very gentle beast and of a good ceiving me, is Thisby's cue: she is to enter conscience. now, and I am to spy her through the wall. Dem. The very best at a beast, my lord, You shall see, it will fall pat as I told you:- that e'er I saw. Yonder she comes.

Lys. This lion is a very fox for his valour. Enter THISBE.

The. True; and a goose for bis discretion. This. O wall, full often hast thou heard Dum. Not so, my lord : for his valour canmy moans,

not carry his discretion; and the fox carries " For parting my fair Pyramus and me : " My cherry lips have often kiss'd thy The. His discretion, I am sure, cannot car. stones;

ry his valour; for the goose carries not the Thy stones with lime and hair knit up fox. It is well: leave it to his discretion, in thee."

and let us listen to the moon. Pyr. I see a voice : now will I to the Moon. “ This lantern doth the horned moon chink,

present :" “ To spy an I can hear my Thisby's face. Dem. He should have worn the horns on " Thisby !"

his head. This. “ My love! thou art my love, I The. He is no crescent, and his horns are think.'

invisible within the circumference. Pyr. “ Think what thou wilt, I am thy Moon. “ This lantern doth the horned lover's grace;

moon present; “ And like Limander am I trusty still." Myself the man i’ the muon do seem to be.” This. And I like Helen, till the fates me The. This is the greatest error of all the kill."

[true.” rest : the man should be put into the lantern:
Pyr. " Not Shafalus to Procrus was so How is it else the man i' the moon ?
This. As Shafalus to Procrus I to you." Dem. He dares not come there for the can-
Pyr. “ 0, kiss me through the hole of this dle : for, you see, it is already in snuff

*. vile wall."

Hip. I am aweary of this moon: Would, This. I kiss the wall's hole, not your lips he would change!

The. It appears, by his small light of dis. Pyr.“ Wilt thou at Ninny's tomb meet me cretion, that he is in the wane: but yet, in straightway?"

courtesy, in all reason, we must stay the time. This.“ Tide life, tide death, I come without Lys. Proceed, moon. delay."

Moon. All that I have to say, is, to tel: Wall. “ Thus have I, wall, my part dis- you, that the lantern is the moon; 1, the man charged so ;

[go.” in the moon; this thorn-bush, my thorn-bush And, being done, thus wall away doth and this dog, my dog. [Exeunt Wall, PYRAMUS, and TúisBE. Dem. Why, all these should be in the lanThe. Now the mural wn between the tern; for they are in the moon. But, silence two neighbours.

here comes Thisbe. Dem. No remedy, my lord, when walls are

Enter THISBE. so wilful to bear without warning.

This. “ This is old Ninny's tomb: Where Hip. This is the silliest stuff that ever I is my love? heard.

Lion. « Oh"
The. The best in this kind are but sla-

[The Lion roars.-THisbe runs oj". dows; and the worst are no worse, if imagin- Dem. Well roared, lion. ation amend them.

The. Well run, Thisbe. Hip. It must be your imagination then, and Hip. Well shone, moon.-Truly, the moon not theirs.

shines with a good grace. The. If we imagine no worse of them, than The. Well moused, lion. they of themselves, they may pass for excel- (The Lion tears Thisbe's mantle, and exit. lent men. Here come two noble beasts in, a Dim. And so comes Pyramus. moon and a lion.

Lys. And then the moon vanishes.
Enter Lion and Moonshine.

Lion. “ You, ladies, you, whose gentle Pyr. “ Sweet moon,

I thank thee for thy hearts do fear

sunny beams; " The smallest monstrous mouse that creeps “ I thank thee, moon, for shining now so on floor,


Q * In anger; a quibble.

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at all.”


“ For, by thy gracious, golden, glittering

“ Are gone, are gone : 'streams,

Lovers, make moan! “ I trust to taste of truest Thisby's sight. “ His eyes were green as leeks. “ But stay ;-0 spite!

« O sisters three, “ But mark ;-Poor knight,

“ Come, come, to me, " What dreadful dole is here?

“ With hands as pale as milk; Eyes, do you see?

Lay them in gore, " How can it be?

“ Since you have shore " O dainty duck! O dear !

" With shears his thread of silk. " Thy mantle good,

Tongue, not a word: What, stain'd with blood ?

Come, trusty sword ; “ Approach, ye furies fell!

Come, blade, my breast imbrue : " O fates! come, come ;

“'And farewell, friends; « Cut thread and thrum *;

“ Thus Thisby ends : " Quail, crush, conclude, and qnell + !" “Adieu, adieu, adieu.”

(Dies. The. This passion, and the death of a dear The. Moonsbine, and lion are left to bury friend, would go near to make a man look the dead. sad.

(man. Dem. Ay, and wall too. Hip. Beshrew my heart, but I pity the Bot. No, I assure you; the wall is down Pyr. 0, wherefore, nature, didst thou that parted their fathers. Will it please you lions frame?

[dear. to see the epilogue, or to hear a Bergomask “ Since lion vile hath here deflower'd my dance, between two of our company? " Which is-10, no--which was the fairest Thé. No epilogue, I pray you; for your dame,

[look'd with cheert. play needs no excuse. Never excuse; for " That liv'd, that lov'd, that likod, that when the players are all dead, there need none " Come, tears, confound;

to be blamed. Marry, if he that writ it, had “ Out, sword, and wound

play'd Pyramus, and hanged himself in This“ The pap of Pyramus :

be's garter, it would have been a fine tragedy: Ay, that left pap,

and so it is, truly; and very notably dis“ Where heart doth hop:

charged. But come, your Bergomask : let “ Thus die I, thus, thus, thus.

your epilogue alone. “ Now am I dead,

[Here a dance of Clowns. " Now am I sled;

The iron tongue of midnight hath told “ My soul is in the sky:

twelve :Tongue, lose thy light!

Lovers, to bed; 'tis almost fairy time. “ Moon, take thy flight!

I fear we shall out-sleep the coming morn, “ Now die, die, die, die, die.”

As much as we this night have overwatch'd. [ Dies.-Exit Moonshine. This palpable gross play hath well beguil'd Dem. No die, but an ace, for him; for be The heavy gait g of 'night.-Sweet friends, to is but one.

bed.Lys. Less than an ace, map; for he is A fortnight hold we this solemnity, dead: he is nothing.

In nightly revels, and new jollity.''[Exeunt. The. With the belp of a surgeon, he might

SCENE II. yet recover, and prove an ass. Hip. How chance Moonshine is gone, be

Enter Puck. fore T'bisbe comes back and finds her lover?

The. She will find him by star-light.-Here Puck. Now the hungry lion roars, she comes; and her passion ends the play.

And the wolf behowls the moon;

Whilst the heavy ploughman snores, Hip. Methinks, she should not use a long All with weary task fordone ). one, for such a Pyramus : I hope, slie will be Now the wasted brands do glow, brief.

Whilst the scritch-owl, scritching loud, Dom. A mote will turn the balance, which Puts the wretch, that lies in woe, Pyramus, which Thisbe, is the better.

In remembrance of a shroud. Lys. She hath spied him already with Now it is the time of night, those sweet eyes.

That the graves, all gaping wide, Dem. And thus she moans, videlicet.- Every one lets forth his sprite, This. Asleep, my love?

In ihe church-way paths to glide: What, dead, my dove?

And we fairies, that do ron · () Pyramus, arise,

By the triple Hecat's team, “ Speak, speak. Quite dumb ?

From the presence of the sun, “ 'Dead, dead? A tomb

Following darkness like a dream, “ Must cover thy sweet eyes.

Now are frolic; not a mouse " These lily brows,

Shall disturb this hallow'd house : “ This cherry nose,

I am sent, with broom, before, " These yellow cowslip cheeks,

To sweep the dust behind the door. + Destroy, 1 Countenance. Ś Progress.

. Coarse yarn.

! Overcome.

Enter OBERON and TITANIA, with their

Train. Obe. Through this house give glimmering

By the dead and drowsy fire :
Every elf, and fairy sprite,

Hop as light as bird from brier;
And this ditty, after me,
Sing, and dance it trippingly.

Tita. First, rehearse this song by rote:
To each word a warbling note,
Hand in hand, with fairy grace,
Will we sing, and bless this place.

Obe. Now, until the break of day,
Throvgh this house each fairy stray.
To the best bride-bed will we,
Which by us shall blessed be;
And the issue, there create,
Ever shall be fortunate.
So shall all the couples three
Ever true in loving be:
And the blots of nature's hand
Shall not in their issue stand;
Never mole, hare lip, nor scar,
Nor mark prodigions *, such as are
Despised in nativity,

Shall upon their children be.
With this field dew consecrate,
Every fairy take his gait +;
And each several chamber bless,
Through this palace with sweet peace :

E’er shall it in safety rest,
. And the owner of it blest.

Trip away;

Make no stay ;
Meet me all by break of day.

[Exeunt OBERON, TITANIA, and Train. Pack. If we shadows have offended,

Think but this,( and all is mended,)
That you have but slumber'd here,
While these visions did appear.
And this weak and idle theme,
No more yielding but a dream,
Gentles, do not reprehend ;
If you pardon, we will mend.
And, as I'm an honest Puck,
If we have unearned luck
Now to'scape the serpent's tongue,
We will make amends, ere long :
Else the Puck a liar call,
So, good-night unto you all.
Give me your hands, if we be friends,
And Robin shall restore amends.


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Wild and fantastical as this play is, 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.-JOHNSON.

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