Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: Suzanne Westfall
Not Peer Reviewed

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


A Midsommer nightes dreame.
Hit with Cupids archery,
Sinke in apple of his eye,
When his loue he doth espy,
Let her shine as gloriously
1130As the Venus of the sky.
When thou wak'st, if she be by,
Begge of her, for remedy.
Enter Puck.
Puck. Captaine of our Fairy band,
1135Helena is heere at hande,
And the youth, mistooke by mee,
Pleading for a louers fee.
Shall wee their fond pageant see?
Lord, what fooles these mortals bee!
1140Ob. Stand aside. The noyse, they make,
Will cause Demetrius to awake.
Pu. Then will two, at once, wooe one:
That must needes be sport alone.
And those things do best please mee,
1145That befall prepost'rously.
Enter Lysander, and Helena.
Lys. Why should you think, that I should wooe in scorne?
Scorne, and derision, neuer come in teares.
Looke when I vow, I weepe: and vowes so borne,
1150In their natiuitie all truth appeares.
How can these things, in mee, seeme scorne to you?
Bearing the badge of faith to prooue them true.
Hel. You doe aduance your cunning, more, and more.
When trueth killes truth, ? diuelish holy fray!
1155These vowes are Hermias. Will you giue her ore?
Weigh oath, with oath, and you will nothing waigh.
Your vowes to her, and mee (put in two scales)
Will euen weigh; and both as light as tales.
Lys. I had no iudgement, when to her I swore.
1160Hel. Nor none, in my minde, now you giue her ore.
Lys.