Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: Suzanne Westfall
Not Peer Reviewed

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


A Midsommer nightes dreame.
The fold stands empty, in the drowned field,
And crowes are fatted with the murrion flocke.
The nine mens Morris is fild vp with mudde:
And the queint Mazes, in the wanton greene,
475For lacke of tread, are vndistinguishable.
The humane mortals want their winter heere.
No night is now with hymne or carroll blest.
Therefore the Moone (the gouernesse of floods)
Pale in her anger, washes all the aire;
480That Rheumaticke diseases doe abound.
And, thorough this distemperature, wee see
The seasons alter: hoary headed frosts
Fall in the fresh lappe of the Crymson rose,
And on old Hyems chinne and Icy crowne,
485An odorous Chaplet of sweete Sommer buddes
Is, as in mockery, set. The Spring, the Sommer,
The childing Autumne, angry Winter change
Their wonted Liueries: and the mazed worlde,
By their increase, now knowes not which is which:
490And this same progeny of euils,
Comes from our debate, from our dissention:
We are their Parents and originall.
Oberon. Doe you amend it then: it lyes in you.
Why should Titania crosse her Oberon?
495I doe but begge a little Changeling boy,
To be my Henchman.
Queene. Set your heart at rest.
The Faiery Land buies not the childe of mee,
His mother was a Votresse of my order:
500And in the spiced Indian ayer, by night,
Full often hath she gossipt, by my side,
And sat, with me on Neptunes yellow sands
Marking th'embarked traders on the flood:
When we haue laught to see the sailes conceaue,
505And grow bigge bellied, with the wanton winde:
Which