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Night and filence! who is here?
Weeds of Athens he doth wear;
This is he, my master faid,
Defpised the Athenian maid.
And here the maiden sleeping sound
On the dank and dirty ground.
Pretty soul! she durft not lye.
Near to this kill-curtesy. (11)
Churl, upon thy eyes I throw
All the pow'r this charm doth owe:
When thou wak'it, let love forbid
Sleep his seat on thy eye-lid;
So awake, when I am gone:
For I must now to Oberon.


Enter Demetrius and Helena running.

Hel. Stay, tho' thou kill me, sweet Demetrius.
Dem. I charge thee, hence, and do not haunt me thus.
Hel. O, wilt thou darkling, leave me? do not fo.
Dem. Stay, on thy peril; T alone will go.

Exit Demetrius,
Hel. O, I am out of breath in this fond chace;
The more my prayer, the lesser is my gracę.
Happy is Hermia, wherefoe'er she lies;
For the hath bleffed, and attractive, eyes,
How came her

eyes fo bright? not with salt tears ;
If so, my eyes are oftner wash'd than hers:
No, no, I am as ugly as a bear;
For beasts, that meet me, run away for fear.

(11) Near to this lack-love, this kill curtesy] Thus, in all the printed Editions. But this Verse, as Ben Johnson says, is broke louse from his Fellows, and wants to be tyed up. I belicvé, the Poet wrote ;

Near to this kill.courtesy. And so the line is reduced to the Measure of the other. But tbią Term being somewhat quaint and uncommon, the Players, in my Opinion, officiously clap'd in the other, as a Comment; and so it has ever since held Poffeffion.



Therefore no marvel, tho' Demetrius
Do (as a monfter) Ay my prefence thus.
What wicked, and diffembling, glafs of mine
Made me compare with Hermia's sphery eyne?
But who is here? Lysander on the ground:
Dead or asleep? I see no blood, no wound:
Lysander, if you live, good Sir, awake.
Lys. And run thro' fire I will, for thy sweet sake.

Transparent Helen, nature here shews art,
That through thy bosom makes me fee thy heart.
Where is Demetrius? Oh, how fit a word
Is that vile name, to perish, on my fword!

Hel. Do not say so, Lysander, fay not fo;
What tho' he love your Hermia ? lord, what tho’?
Yet Hermia still loves you; then be content.

Lys. Content with Hermia? no: I do repent
The tedious minutes I with her have spent;
Not Hermia, but Helena I love:
Who will not change a raven for a dove?
The will of man is by his reason sway'd;
And reason says, you are the worthier maid.
Things, growing, are not ripe until their season ;
So I, being young, 'till now ripe not to reason;
And, touching now the point of human skill,
Reason becomes the marshal to my will,
And leads me to your eyes; where I o'erlook
Love's stories, written in love's richest book.

Hel. Wherefore was I to this keen mock'ry born?
When at your

hands did I deserve this scorn? Is't not enough, is't not enough, young man, That I did never, no, nor never can, Deserve a sweet look from Demetrius' eye, But you muit flout my insufficiency? Good troth, you do me wrong; good footh, you do, In such disdainful manner me to woo : But fare you well. Perforce I must confefs, I thought you lord of more true gentleness; Oh, that a lady, of one Man refus'd, Should of another therefore be abus'd !




Lyf. She fees not Hermia; Hermia, seep thou there;
And never may'lt thou come Lysander near ;
For as a furfeit of the fweetest things
The deepest loathing to the stomach brings;
Or as the heresies, chat men do leave,
Are hated most of those they did deceive;
So thou, my surfeit and my heresy,
Of all be hated, but the most of me!
And all my pow'rs address your love and might
To honour Helen, and to be her knight! [Exit.

Her. Help me, Lysander, help me! do thy best
To pluck this crawling ferpent from my breast :
Ay me, for pity, what a dream was here?
Lysander, look, how I do quake with fear;
Me-thought a ferpent eat my heart away ;
And you fat smiling at his cruel prey :
Lysander ! what remov'd ? Lysander, ford!
What, out of hearing gone ? no found, no word ?
Alack, where are you? speak, and if you hear,
Speak, of all loves ; (I fwoon almost with fear.)
No? -then I well perceive, you are not nigh ;
Or death, or you, I'll find immediately.


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SCENE, The Wood.
Enter Quince, Snug, Bottom, Flute, Snowt and,

The Queen of Fairies lying asleep.

RE we all met.

Quin. Pat, pat; and here's a marvellous convenient place for our rehearsal. This green plot shall be our fage, this hauthorn-brake our tyring house, VOL.I.



and we will do it in action, as we will do it before the Duke.

Bot. Peter Quince
Quin. What fay'st thou, bully Bottom ?

Bot. There are things in this comedy of Pyramus and Thisby, that will never please. First, Pyramus must draw a sword to kill himself, which the ladies cannot abide. How answer you chat ?

Snowt. By'rlaken, a parlous fear. .} Star. I believe we must leave the killing out, when all is done.

Bot. Not a whit, I have a device to make all well; write me a prologue, and let the prologue seem to say, we will do no harm with our swords, and that Pyramus is not kill'd indeed; and for more better assurance tell them, that I Pyramus am not Pyramus, but Bottom the weaver; this will put them out of fear. * *

Quin. Well, we will have such a prologue, and it Ihall be written in eight and fix.

Bot. No, make it two more; let it be written in eight and eight.

Snowt. Will not the ladies be afraid of the lion?
Star. I fear it, I promise you.

Bot. Mafters, you ought to consider with yourselves ; to bring in, God shield us, a lion among ladies, is a most dreadful thing; for there is not a more fearful wild-fowl than your lion living; and we ought to look

to it.

Snowt. Therefore another prologue must tell, he is not

a lion.

Bot. Nay you must name his name, and half his face must be seen through the lion's neck; and he himself muft speak through, saying thus, or to the same defect; ladies, or fair ladies, I would wish you, or I would request you, or I would intreat you, not to fear, not to tremble; my life for yours ; if you think, I come hither as a lion, it were pity of my life; no, I am no such thing, I am a man as other men are; and there, indeed, let him name his name, and tell them plainly he is Snug the joiner.

Quir. Well, it shall be so; but there is two hard things, that is to bring the moon-light into a chamber; for, you know, Pyramus and Thifby meet by moon. light,

Snug. Doth the moon shine that night we play our play?

Bot. A kalendar, a kalendar! look in the almanack; And out moon-fhine, find out moon-fhine.

Quin. Yes, it doth shine that night. Bot.. Why then may you leave a cafement of the great chamber window, where we play, open; and the moon may shine in at the casement.

Quin. Ay, or else one must come in with a bush of thorns and a lanthorn, and say, he comes to disfigure, or to present, the person of moon-shine. Then there is another thing; we must have a wall in the great chamber, for Pyramus, and Thifby (lays the story) did talk through the chink of a wall.

Snug. You never can bring in a wall. What say yoo, Bottom?

Bot. Some man or other must present Wall; and let him have some plafter, or fome lome, or some roughcast about him, to signify, wall: Or let him hold his fingers thus; and through the cranny shall Pyramus and Thisby whisper.

Quin. If that may be, then all is well. Come, fit down every mother's son, and rehearse your parts. Pyramus, you begin ; when you have spoken your speech, enter into that brake ; and so every one according to his


Enter Puck behind.

Puck. What hempen home-spuns have we swaggering here,
So near the cradle of the fairy Queen?
What, a play tow'rd ? I'll be an auditor;
An Actor too, perhaps, if I see cause..

Puin. Speak, Pyramus; Thisby, stand forth.
Pyr. Thisoy, the flower of odious favours sweet.
Quin, Odours, odoors.

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