Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: Grechen Minton
Not Peer Reviewed

Much Ado About Nothing (Quarto 1, 1600)

Much adoe
Prince She were an excellent wife for Benedick.
Leonato O Lord, my lord, if they were but a weeke married,
they would talke themselues madde.
750Prince Countie Claudio, when meane you to goe to
Clau. To morow my lord, Time goes on crutches, til Loue
haue all his rites.
Leonato Not til monday, my deare sonne, which is hence a
755iust seuennight, and a time too briefe too, to haue al things an-
swer my mind.
Prince Come, you shake the head at so long a breathing,
but I warrant thee Claudio, the time shall not go dully by vs, I
wil in the interim, vndertake one of Hercules labors, which is,
760to bring Signior Benedick and the lady Beatrice into a moun-
taine of affection, th'one with th'other, I would faine haue it a
match, and I doubt not but to fashion it, if you three will but
minister such assistance as I shall giue you direction.
765Leonato My lord, I am for you, though it cost me ten nights
Claud. And I my Lord.
Prince And you too gentle Hero?
Hero I wil do any modest office, my lord, to help my cosin
770to a good husband.
Prince And Benedicke is not the vnhopefullest husband
that I know: thus farre can I praise him, he is of a noble strain,
of approoued valour, and confirmde honesty, I will teach you
how to humour your cosin, that she shall fal in loue with Be-
775nedicke, and I, with your two helpes, wil so practise on Bene-
dicke, that in dispight of his quicke wit, and his queasie sto-
macke, he shall fall in loue with Beatrice: if we can do this, Cu-
pid is no longer an Archer, his glory shall bee ours, for we are
the onely loue-gods, goe in with mee, and I will tell you my
Enter Iohn and Borachio.
Iohn It is so, the Counte Claudio shall marry the daughter
of Leonato.
Bora. Yea my lord, but I can crosse it.