Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: Timothy Billings
Not Peer Reviewed

Love's Labor's Lost (Quarto 1, 1598)


Berow. And what to me my Loue? and what to me?
Rosal. You must be purged to, your sinnes are rackt.
You are attaint with faultes and periurie:
2780Therefore if you my fauour meane to get,
A tweluemonth shall you spende and neuer rest,
But seeke the weery beddes of people sicke.
Duma. But what to me my Loue? but what to me?
Kath. A wife? a beard, faire health, and honestie,
2785With three folde loue I wish you all these three.
Duma. O shall I say, I thanke you gentle Wife?
Kath. Not so my Lord, a tweluemonth and a day,
Ile marke no wordes that smothfast wooers say,
Come when the King doth to my Lady come:
2790Then if I haue much loue, Ile giue you some.
Duma. Ile serue thee true and faythfully till then.
Kath. Yet sweare not, least ye be forsworne agen.
Longauill. What saies Maria?
Mari. At the tweluemonths ende,
2795Ile change my blacke Gowne for a faithfull frend.
Long. Ile stay with patience, but the time is long.
Mari. The liker you, few taller are so young.
Berow. Studdies my Ladie? Mistres looke on me,
Beholde the window of my hart, mine eye:
2800What humble suite attendes thy answere there,
Impose some seruice on me for thy Loue.
Rosa. Oft haue I heard of you my Lord Berowne,
Before I saw you: and the worldes large tongue
Proclaymes you for a man repleat with mockes,
2805Full of comparisons and wounding floutes:
Which you on all estetes will execute,
That lie within the mercie of your wit
To weede this wormewood from your fructfull braine,
And therewithall to winne me, yf you please,
2810Without the which I am not to be won:
You shall this tweluemonth terme from day to day,
Visite the speachlesse sicke, and still conuerse,
With groning wretches: and your taske shall be,
With all the fierce endeuour of your wit,
K1
To
A pleasant conceited Comedie: