Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: Suzanne Westfall
Not Peer Reviewed

A Midsummer Night's Dream (Quarto 1, 1600)


A Midsommer nightes dreame.
Tom Snowte, the Tinker?
325Snowt. Here Peter Quince.
Quin. You, Pyramus father; my selfe, Thisbies father;
Snugge, the Ioyner, you the Lyons part: And I hope here
is a Play fitted.
Snug. Haue you the Lyons part written? Pray you, if it
330bee, giue it mee: for I am slowe of studie.
Quin. You may doe it, extempore: for it is nothing but
roaring.
Bott. Let mee play the Lyon to. I will roare, that I will
doe any mans heart good to heare mee. I will roare, that
335I will make the Duke say; Let him roare againe: let him
roare againe.
Quin. And you should do it too terribly, you would fright
the Dutchesse, and the Ladies, that they would shrike: and
that were inough to hang vs all.
340All. That would hang vs, euery mothers sonne.
Bot. I grant you, friends, if you should fright the Ladies
out of their wits, they would haue no more discretion, but
to hang vs: but I will aggrauate my voice so, that I wil
roare you as gently, as any sucking doue: I will roare you,
345and 'twere any Nightingale.
Quin. You can play no part but Piramus: for Piramus is a
sweete fac't man; a proper man as one shall see in a som-
mers day; a most louely gentlemanlike man: therefore
350you must needes play Piramus.
Bot. Well: I will vndertake it. What beard were I best
to play it in?
Quin. Why? what you will.
Bot. I wil discharge it, in either your straw colour beard,
355your Orange tawnie bearde, your purple in graine beard,
or your french crowne colour beard, your perfit yellow.
Quin. Some of your french crownes haue no haire at all;
and then you will play bare fac't. But maisters here are
360your parts, and I am to intreat you, request you, and desire
you