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ACT IV.

SCENE I. Another part of the same.

Enter the Princess, ROSALINE, Maria, KATHARINE,

Boyer, Lords, Attendants, and a Forester. Prin. Was that the king, that spurred his horse so

hard
Against the steep uprising of the hill ?
Boyet. I know not; but I think it was not he.
Prin. Whoe'er he was, he showed a mounting

mind.
Well, lords, to-day we shall have our despatch ;
On Saturday we will return to France. -
Then, forester, my friend, where is the bush,
That we must stand and play the murderer in?

For. Here by, upon the edge of yonder coppice; A stand where you may make the fairest shoot.

Prin. I thank my beauty, I am fair that shoot,
And thereupon thou speakest, the fairest shoot.

For. Pardon me, madam, for I meant not so.
Prin. What, what ? first praise me, and again

say, no?

O short-lived pride! Not fair ? alack for woe!

For. Yes, madam, fair.
Prin.

Nay, never paint me now;
Where fair is not, praise cannot mend the brow.
Here, good my glass, take this for telling true;

[Giving him money. Fair payment for foul words is more than due.

For. Nothing but fair is that which you inherit. .

Prin. See, see, my beauty will be saved by merit. O heresy in fair, fit for these days! A giving hand, though foul, shall have fair praise.But come, the bow.—Now mercy goes to kill, And shooting well is then accounted ill. Thus will I save my credit in the shoot; Not wounding, pity would not let me do't ;

If wounding, then it was to show my skill,

,
That more for praise, than purpose, meant to kill.
And, out of question, so it is sometimes;
Glory grows guilty of detested crimes,
When, for fame's sake, for praise, an outward part,
We bend to that the working of the heart ;
As I, for praise alone, now seek to spill
The poor deer's blood, that my heart means no ill.

Boyet. Do not curst wives hold that self-sovereignty
Only for praise sake, when they strive to be
Lords o'er their lords?

Prin. Only for praise; and praise we may afford
To any lady that subdues a lord.

Enter COSTARD.
Here comes a member of the commonwealth.

Cost. God dig-you-den ” all! Pray you, which is the head lady?

Prin. Thou shalt know her, fellow, by the rest that have no heads.

Cost. Which is the greatest lady, the highest ?
Prin. The thickest, and the tallest.
Cost. The thickest, and the tallest! It is so; truth

is truth.
An your waist, mistress, were as slender as my wit,
One of these maids' girdles for your waist should be fit.
Are not you the chief woman? You are the thickest

here. Prin. What's your will, sir ? what's your will ? Cost. I have a letter from monsieur Biron, to one

lady Rosaline. Prin. O, thy letter, thy letter; he's a good friend

of mine. Stand aside, good bearer.—Boyet, you can carve; Break

up this capon.

1 The princess calls Costard a member of the commonwealth, because he is one of the attendants on the king and his associates in their newmodelled society.

2 A corruption of God give you good even.

3 i. e. open this letter. The poet uses this metaphor as the French do their poulet ; which signifies both a young fowl and a love-letter.

Boyet.

I am bound to serve.-
This letter is mistook; it importeth none here.
It is writ to Jaquenetta.
Prin.

We will read it, I swear. Break the neck of the wax, and every one give ear.

Boyet. [Reads.] By Heaven, that thou art fair, is most infallible ; true, that thou art beauteous ; truth itself, that thou art lovely. More fairer than fair, beautiful than beauteous; truer than truth itself, have commiseration on thy heroical vassal! The magnanimous and most illustrate king Cophetua set eye upon the pernicious and indubitate beggar Zenelophon ; and he it was that might rightly say, veni, vidi, vici; which to anatomize in the vulgar, (O base and obscure vulgar :) videlicet, he came, saw, and overcame; he came, one ; saw, two; overcame, three. Who came? The king. Why did he come? To see. Why did he see? To overcome. To whom came he? To the beggar. What saw he? The beggar. Who overcame he? The beggar. The conclusion is victory. On whose side? The king's. The captive is enriched. On whose side? The beggar's. The catastrophe is a nuptial. On whose side? The king's ? No, on both in one, or one in both. I am the king; for so stands the comparison : thou the beggar; for so witnesseth thy lowliness. Shall I command thy love ? I may. Shall I enforce thy love? I could. Shall I entreat thy love? I will. What shalt thou exchange for rags ? Robes; for tittles, titles; for thyself, me.

Thus, expecting thy reply, I profane my lips on thy foot, my eyes on thy picture, and my heart on thy every part. Thine, in the dearest design of industry,

Don ADRIANO DE ARMADO. Thus dost thou hear the Nemean lion roar

'Gainst thee, thou lamb, that standest as his prey; Submissive fall his princely feet before,

And he from forage will incline to play.

i The ballad of King Cophetua and the Beggar Maid may be seen in the Reliques of Ancient Poetry, vol. i. The beggar's name was Penelophon.

But if thou strive, poor soul, what art thou then ?
Food for his rage, repasture for his den.
Prin. What plume of feathers is he, that indited

this letter? What vane ? what weathercock ? did you ever hear

better? Boyet. I am much deceived, but I remember the style. Prin. Else your memory is bad, going o'er it ere

while. Boyet. This Armado is a Spaniard, that keeps

here in court; A phantasm, a Monarcho, and one that makes sport To the prince, and his book-mates. Prin.

Thou, fellow, a word.
Who gave thee this letter?
Cost.

I told you, my lord.
Prin. To whom shouldst thou give it ?
Cost.

From my lord to my lady. Prin. From which lord, to which lady?

Cost. From my lord Biron, a good master of mine, To a lady of France, that he called Rosaline. Prin. Thou hast mistaken his letter. Come, lords,

away. Here, sweet, put up this ; 'twill be thine another day.

[Exit Princess and Train. Boyet. Who is the suitor ?" who is the suitor ? 3 Ros.

Shall I teach you to know? Boyet. Ay, my continent of beauty. Ros.

Why, she that bears the bow. Finely put off! Boyet. My lady goes to kill horns; but, if thou

marry, Hang me by the neck, if horns that year miscarry. Finely put on!

1 i. e. lately:

2 The allusion is to a fantastical character of the time. “Popular applause (says Meres, in Wit's Treasurie, p. 178) doth nourish some, neither do they gape after any other thing but vaine praise and glorie,-as in our age Peter Shakerlye of Paules, and Monarcho that lived about the court."

3 An equivoque was here intended; it should appear that the words shooter and suitor were pronounced alike in Shakspeare's time.

Ros. Well then, I am the shooter.
Boyet.

And who is your deer? Ros. If we choose by the horns, yourself; come

near. Finely put on, indeed! Mar. You still wrangle with her, Boyet, and she

strikes at the brow. Boyet. But she herself is hit lower. Have I hit

her now? Ros. Shall I come upon thee with an old saying, that was a man when king Pepin of France was a little boy, as touching the hit it?

Boyet. So I may answer thee with one as old, that was a woman when queen Guinever of Britain was a little wench, as touching the hit it. Ros. Thou canst not hit it, hit it, hit it, [Singing.

Thou canst not hit it, my good man.
Boyet. An I cannot, cannot, cannot,
An I cannot, another can.

[Exeunt Ros. and Kath. Cost. By my troth, most pleasant! how both did

fit it! Mar. A mark marvellous well shot! for they both

did hit it. Boyet. A mark! O, mark but that mark. A mark,

says my lady! Let the mark have a prick in't, to mete at, if it

may be.

Mar. Wide o' the bow hand!] l'faith your hand

is out. Cost. Indeed, a'must shoot nearer, or he'll ne'er hit

the clout. Boyet. An if my hand be out, then, belike your

hand is in. Cost. Then will she get the upshot by cleaving

the pin.

1 This is a term in archery still in use, signifying “a good deal to the left of the mark.” Of the other expressions, the clout was the white mark at which archers took aim. The pin was the wooden nail in the centre of it.

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