Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: Suzanne Westfall
Not Peer Reviewed

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


A Midsommer nightes dreame.
Which she, with prettie, and with swimming gate,
Following (her wombe then rich with my young squire)
Would imitate, and saile vpon the land,
To fetch me trifles, and returne againe,
510As from a voyage, rich with marchandise.
But she, being mortall, of that boy did dye,
And, for her sake, doe I reare vp her boy:
And, for her sake, I will not part with him.
Ob. How long, within this wood, entend you stay?
515Quee. Perchaunce, till after Theseus wedding day.
If you will patiently daunce in our Round,
And see our Moonelight Reuelles, goe with vs:
If not, shunne me, and I will spare your haunts.
Ob. Giue mee that boy, and I will goe with thee.
520Quee. Not for thy Fairy kingdome. Fairies away.
We shall chide downeright, if I longer stay.
Exeunt.
Ob. Well: goe thy way. Thou shalt not from this groue,
Till I torment thee, for this iniury.
My gentle Pucke come hither: thou remembrest,
525Since once I sat vpon a promontory,
And heard a Mearemaide, on a Dolphins backe,
Vttering such dulcet and hermonious breath,
That the rude sea grewe ciuill at her song,
And cettaine starres shot madly from their Spheares,
530To heare the Sea-maids musicke.
Puck. I remember.
Ob. That very time, I saw (but thou could'st not)
Flying betweene the colde Moone and the earth,
Cupid, all arm'd: a certaine aime he tooke
535At a faire Vestall, throned by west,
And loos'd his loue-shaft smartly, from his bowe,
As it should pearce a hundred thousand hearts:
But, I might see young Cupids fiery shaft
Quencht in the chast beames of the watry Moone:
540And the imperiall Votresse passed on,
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