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Moth. Little pretty, because little. Wherefore apt?
Arm. 1 do say, thou art quick in answers.
Moth. I am answered, sir.
1 not him.
[Aside. Arm. I have promised to study three years with the duke.
Moth. You may do it in an hour, sir.
Arm. I am ill at reckoning; it fitteth the spirit of a tapster.
Moth. You are a gentleman, and a gamester, sir.
Arm. I confess both; they are both the varnish of a complete man.
Moth. Then I am sure you know how much the gross sum of deuce-ace amounts to.
Arm. It doth amount to one more than two.
Moth. Why, sir, is this such a piece of study? Now here is three studied, ere you'll thrice wink; and how easy it is to put years to the word three, and study three years in two words, the dancing horse ? will tell you.
Arm. A most fine figure !
[Aside. Arm. I will hereupon confess, I am in love; and, as it is base for a soldier to love, so am I in love with a base wench. If drawing my sword against the humor of affection would deliver me from the reprobate thought of it, I would take desire prisoner, and ransom him to any French courtier for a new-devised courtesy. I think scorn to sigh; methinks I should outswear Cupid. Comfort me, boy. What great men have been in love ?
1 By crosses he means money. Many coins were anciently marked with a cross on one side.
2 This alludes to the celebrated bay horse Morocco, belonging to one Bankes, who exhibited his docile and sagacious animal through Europe. Many of his remarkable pranks are mentioned by contemporary writers: and he is alluded to by numbers besides Shakspeare.
Moth. Hercules, master.
Arm. Most sweet Hercules !—More authority, dear boy, name more; and, sweet my child, let them be men of good repute and carriage.
Moth. Samson, master. He was a man of good carriage, great carriage! For he carried the towngates on his back, like a porter; and he was in love. Arm. O well-knit Samson! strong-jointed Sam
O son! I do excel thee in my rapier, as much as thou didst me in carrying gates. I am in love too.—Who was Samson's love, my dear Moth?
Moth. A woman, master.
Moth. Of all the four, or the three, or the two, or one of the four.
Arm. Tell me precisely of what complexion ?
Arm. Green, indeed, is the color of lovers; but to have a love of that color, methinks Samson had small reason for it. He, surely, affected her for her wit.
Moth. It was so, sir ; for she had a green wit. Arm. My love is most immaculate white and red.
Moth. Most maculate thoughts, master, are masked under such colors.
Arm. Define, define, well-educated infant.
Moth. My father's wit, and my mother's tongue, assist me!
Arm. Sweet invocation of a child; most pretty, and pathetical!
Moth. If she be made of white and red,
Her faults will ne'er be known;
And fears by pale white shown.
By this you shall not know;
Which native she duih owe. A dangerous rhyme, master, against the reason of white and red.
Arm. Is there not a ballad, boy, of the King and the Beggar ??
Moth. The world was very guilty of such a ballad some three ages since. But, I think, now 'tis not to be found; or, if it were, it would neither serve for the writing, nor the tune.
Arın. I will have the subject newly writ o'er, that I may example my digression by some mighty precedent. Boy, I do love that country girl, that I took in the park with the rational hind Costard : she deserves well.
Moth. To be whipped; and yet a better love than my master.
[ Aside. Arm. Sing, boy; my spirit grows heavy in love. Moth. And that's great marvel, loving a light wench. Arm. I say, sing Moth. Forbear till this company be past.
Enter Dull, COSTARD, and JAQUENETTA. Dull. Sir, the duke's pleasure is, that you keep Costard safe; and you must let him take no delight, nor no penance; but aʼmust fast three days a-week. For this damsel, I must keep her at the park; she is allowed for the day-woman. Fare you well.
i Of which she is naturally possessed.
198. 3 Digression is here used for the act of going out of the right waytransgression.
4 Taberna casearia is interpreted in the old dictionaries a daye house, where cheese is made. A day-woman is therefore a dairy-woman. JohnVOL. 11.
Arm. I do betray myself with blushing.–Maid-
[Exeunt Dull and JAQUENETTA. Arm. Villain, thou shalt fast for thy offences, ere thou be pardoned.
Cost. Well, sir, I hope, when I do it, I shall do it on a full stomach.
Arm. Thou shalt be heavily punished.
Cost. I am more bound to you, than your fellows, for they are but lightly rewarded. Arm. Take away this villain. Shut him
up. Moth. Come, you transgressing slave; away.
Cost. Let me not be pent up, sir; I will fast, being loose.
Moth. No, sir; that were fast and loose. Thou shalt to prison.
Cost. Well, if ever I do see the merry days of desolation that I have seen, some shall see
Moth. What shall some see?
Cost. Nay, nothing, master Moth, but what they look upon. It is not for prisoners to be too silent in their words; and, therefore, I will say nothing. I thank God, I have as little patience as another man; and, therefore, I can be quiet.
[Exeunt Moth and CostaRD.
son says day is an old word for milk. A dairy-maid is still called a dey or day in the northern parts of Scotland.
1 Jaquenetta and Armado are at cross-purposes. Hereby is used by her (as among the common people of some counties) in the sense of as it may happen. He takes it in the sense of just by
Arm. I do affect the very ground, which is base, where her shoe, which is baser, guided by her foot, which is basest, doth tread. I shall be forsworn, (which is a great argument of falsehood,) if I love. ( And how can that be true love, which is falsely ati empted? Love is a familiar; love is a devil: there is no evil angel but love. Yet Samson was so tempted; and he had an excellent strength. Yet was Solomon so seduced; and he had a very good wit. Cupid's butt-shaft ? is too hard for Hercules' club, and therefore too much odds for a Spaniard's rapier. The first and second cause will not serve my turn; 3 the passado he respects not, the duello he regards not.
His disgrace is to be called boy; but his glory is to subdue men. Adieu, valor! rust , rapier! be still
, drum! for your manager is in love; yea, he loveth. Assist me, some extemporal god of rhyme, for, I am sure, I shall turn sonneteer. Devise, wit! write, pen! for I am for whole volumes in folio.
SCENE I. Another part of the same.
and Tents at a distance.
Enter the Princess of France, Rosaline, Maria,
KATHARINE, BOYET, Lords, and other Attendants.
2 A kind of arrow used for shooting at butts with. The butt was the place on which the mark to be shot at was placed.
3 See notes on the last act of As You Like It, also note to Romeo and Juliet, Act ii. Sc. 4.