Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: Grechen Minton
Not Peer Reviewed

Much Ado About Nothing (Quarto 1, 1600)


Much adoe
be happy Lady, for you are like an honourable father.
110Be. If Signior Leonato be her father, she would not haue
his head on her shoulders for all Messina as like him as she is.
Beat. I wonder that you will still be talking, signior Bene-
dicke, no body markes you.
115Bene. What my deere lady Disdaine! are you yet liuing?
Bea. Is it possible Disdaine should die, while she hath such
meete foode to feede it, as signior Benedicke? Curtesie it selfe
must conuert to Disdaine, if you come in her presence.
Bene. Then is curtesie a turne-coate, but it is certaine I am
loued of all Ladies, onelie you excepted: and I would I could
finde in my heart that I had not a hard heart, for truely I loue
none.
125Beat. A deere happinesse to women, they would else haue
beene troubled with a pernitious suter, I thanke God and my
cold blood, I am of your humour for that, I had rather heare
my dog barke at a crow, than a man sweare he loues me.
130Bene. God keepe your Ladiship stil in that mind, so some
Gentleman or other shall scape a predestinate scratcht face.
Beat. Scratching could not make it worse, and twere such
a face as yours were.
135Bene. Well, you are a rare parrat teacher.
Beat. A bird of my tongue, is better than a beast of yours.
Ben. I would my horse had the speed of your tongue, and
so good a continuer, but keep your way a Gods name, I haue
140done.
Beat. You alwayes end with a iades tricke, I knowe you of
olde.
Pedro That is the summe of all: Leonato, signior Claudio,
and signior Benedicke, my deere friend Leonato, hath inuited
145you all, I tell him we shall stay here, at the least a moneth, and
he heartily praies some occasion may detaine vs longer, I dare
sweare he is no hypocrite, but praies from his heart.
Leon. If you sweare, my lord, you shall not be forsworne,
150let mee bidde you welcome, my lord, being reconciled to the
Prince your brother: I owe you all duetie.
Iohn I thanke you, I am not of many wordes, but I thanke
you
Leon.