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* Beat. Speak, cousin, or (if you cannot) stop his mouth with a kiss, and let him not speak' neither.

Pedro. In faith, Lady, you have a merry heart.

Beat. Yea, my Lord, I thank it, poor fool, it keeps on the windy side of care; my cousin tells him in his ear, that he is in her heart.

Claud. And so she doth, cousin.

Beat. Good Lord, for alliance! thus goes every one to the world but I, and I am sun-burn'd; I may fit in a corner, and cry Heigh ho! for a husband.

Pedro. Lady Beatrice, I will get you one.
Beat. I would rather have one of your

father's getting. Hath your Grace ne’er a brother like you? your father got excellent husbands, if a maid could come by them.

Pedro. Will you have me, Lady?

Beat. No, my Lord, unless I might have another for working days; your Grace is too costly to wear every day: but I beseech your Grace pardon me, I was born to speak all mirth, and no matter.

Pedro. Your filence most offends me, and to be merту best becomes you ; for, out of question, you were born in a merry hour.

Beat. No, sure, my Lord, my mother cry’d; but then there was a star danced, and under that I was born: Cousins, God give you joy.

Leon. Niece, will you look to those things I told

you of?

* Beat. I cry you mercy, uncle: by your Grace's pardon.

[Exit Beatrice

S CE N E VI.
Pedro. By my troth, a pleasant-spirited lady,

Leon. There's little of the melancholy element in her, my Lord; she is never fad but when she sleeps ; and not ever fad then; for I have heard my daughter say, the hath often dream'd of unhappiness, and wak'd herself with laughing.

Pedro. She cannot endure to hear tell of a husband,

Leon. O, by no means, she mocks all her wooers out of fuit. Pedre. She were an excellent wife for Benedick.

Leon.

Leon. O Lord, my Lord, if they were but a week marry'd, they would talk themselves mad.

Pedro. Count Claudio, when mean you to go to church? Claud. To-morrow,

my Lord; time

goes on crutches, till love have all his rites.

Leon. Not till Monday, my dear fon, which is hence a just seven-night; and a time too brief too to have all things answer my mind.

Pedro. Come, you shake the head at fo long a breathing; but I warrant thee, Claudio, the time thall not go dully by us. I will in the interim undertake one of Hercules's labours; which is, to bring Signior Benedick and the Lady Beatrice into a mountain of affection the one with the other. I would fain have it a inatch; and I doubt not to faihion it, if you three will but minister such assistance as I shall give you direction. · Leon. My Lord, I am for you, though it cost me ten nights watchings.

Claud And I my Lord.
Pedro, And you too, gentle Hero?

Hero I will do any modest office, my Lord, to help my cousin to a good husband

Pedro. And Benedick is not the unhopfullest husband that I know Thus far I can praise him, he is of a noble strain, of approv'd valour, and confirm'd honesty. I will teach you how to humour your cousin, that she shall fall in love with Bencdick; and I, with your two helps, will fo practise on Benedick, that in despight of his quick wit, and his queafy itomach, he shall fall in love with Beatrice If we can do this, Cupid is ne longer an archer, his glory shall be ours, for we are the only love-gods. Go in with me, and I will tell you my drift.

[Exeunt, S CE N E VII. Changes to another apartment in Leonato's boule.

Enter Don John and Borachio. Joha. It is so, the Count Claudio shall marry the daughter of Leonato bort. Yea, my Lord, but I can cross it.

John.

John. Any bar, any cross, any impediment, will be medicinable to me; I am fick in displeasure to him ; and whatsoever comes athwart his aífection, ranges evenly with mine. How canst thou cross this marriage?

Bora Not honestly, my Lord; but fo covertly, that no dishonesty shall appear in me.

John Shew me briefly how.

Bora I think I told your Lord hip a year since, how much I am in the favour of Margaret, the waitinggentlewoman to Hero.

John. I remember.

Bora. I can, at any unseasonable instant of the night, appoint her to look out at her lady's chamber-window.

John. What life is in that, to be the death of this marriage ?

Bora. The poison of that lies in you to temper. Go you to the Prince your brother; fpare not to tell him, that he hath wrong'd his honour in marrying the renown'a Claudio (whole estimation do you mightily hold up) to a contaminated ftale such a one as Hero.

John. What proof fhall I make of that?

Bora. Proof enough to misuse the Prince, to vex Claudio, to undo Hero, and kill Leonato. Look you for any other issue?

John. Only to despite them I will endeavour any thing.

Bora. Go then find me a meet hour to draw Don Pedro and the Count Claudio alone; tell them that you know Hero loves me ; intend a kind of zeal both to the Prince and Claudio, as in a love of your brother's honour, who hath made this match, and his friend's reputation, (who is thus like to be cozen'd with the semblance of a maid), that you have discover'd thus. They will hardly bclieve this without trial: offer them infiances, which ihall bear no less likelihood than to see me at her chamber-window; hear me call Margaret Hero; hear Margaret term me Borackio; and bring them to see this the very night before the intended wedding: for, in the mean time, I will fo fashion the matter, that Hero Thall be absent; and there shall appear such seeming truths of Herc's difoyalty, that

jealousy

jealousy shall be called assurance, and all the preparation overthrown.

John. Grow this to what adverse issue it can, I will put it in practice: be cunning in the working this, and thy fee is a thousand dućats. Bora. Be thou constant in the accusation, and

my cunning shall not shame me. John. I will presently go learn their day of marriage.

[Exeunt.

SCENE VIII. Changes to Leonato's orchard.

Enter Benedick, and a boy.
Pene. Boy,
Bov. Signior.

Bene. In my chamber-window lies a book, bring it hither to me in the orchard. Boy. I am here already, Sir.

[Exit boy. Bene. I know that, but I would have thee hence, and here again.

I do much wonder, that one man, feeing how much another man is a fool, when he dedicates his behaviours to love, will, after he hath laugh'd at such shallow follies in others, become the argument of his own scorn, by falling in love! and such a man is Claudio. I have known, when there was no music with him but the drum and the fife; and now had he rather hear the tabor and the pipe : I have known when he would have walk'd ten mile a-foot to see a good armour; and now will he lie ten nights awake, carving the fashion of a new doublet. He was wont to speak plain, and to the purpose, like an honest man and a foldier; and now he is turn’d orthographer, his words are a very fantastical banquet, just so many strange dishes. May I be so converted, and see with these eyes? I cannot tell; I think not. I will not be sworn, but love may transform me to an oilter ; but I'll take my oath on it, till he have made an oister of me, he ihall never make me such a fool. One woman is fair, yet I am well; another is wise, yet I am well; another virtuous, yet I am well. But till all

graces

be in one woman, one woman shall not come 'in my grace. Rich the ihall be, that's certain; “ wise, or I'll none; vir

" tuous,

tuous, or I'll never cheapen her; fair, or I'll never “ look on her;" mild, or come not near me; noble, or not I for an angel ; of good discourse, an excellent musician, and her hair shall be of what colour it please God *. Ha! the Prince and Monsieur Love! I will hide me in the arbour.

[Withdraws. SC Ε Ν Ε IX. Énter Don Pedro, Leonato, Claudio, and Balthazar.

Pedro. Come shall we hear this music ?

Claud. Yea, my good Lord; how still the evening is, As hush'd on purpose to grace harmony!

Pedro. See you where Benedick hath hid himself?

Claud. O very well, my Lord; the music ended, We'll fit the hid fox with a pennyworth.

Pedro. Come, Balthazar, we'll hear that fong again.

Balth. O good my Lord, tax not so bad a voice To slander music any more than once.

Pedro. It is the witness still of excellency,
To put a strange face on his own perfection ;
'I
pray thee, fing; and let me woo no more t.

The SON G.
Sigh no more, ladies, high no more,

Men were deceivèrs ever;
One foot on sea, and one on more,

To one thing constant never :

WOO no more.

Hinting satirically at the art used by ladies in dying th: ir hair of a colour cifferent from what it is by naiure.

Balsh. Because you talk of wocing, I will sing;
Since many a wooer doth commence his suit
To her he thinks nor worthy, yet he wooes.
Yet will he fwear he loves.

Pedro. Nay, pray thee, come;
Or if thou wilt hoid longer argument,
Do it in roles.

Balth. Note this before my notes,
There's not a note of mine, that's worth the noting.

Pedro. Why, there are very crotchcis that he speaks,
Note, notes, fcrsooth, and noting.

Bene. Now, divine air; now is his soul ravish'd ! Is it not ftrange, that sheeps guts should hale souls out of mens bodies? Well, a hurn, for my money, when all's done. The SONG, &c.

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