Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: Suzanne Westfall
Not Peer Reviewed

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


A Midsommer nightes dreame.
Take not her part. For if thou dost intend
Neuer so little shewe of loue to her,
Thou shalt aby it.
Lys. Now she holdes me not:
1375Now follow, if thou dar'st, to try whose right,
Of thine or mine, is most in Helena.
Deme. Follow? Nay: Ile go with thee, cheeke by iowle.
Her. You, mistresse, all this coyle is long of you.
1380Nay: goe not backe.
Hel. I will not trust you, I,
Nor longer stay in your curst company.
Your hands, than mine, are quicker for a fray:
My legges are longer though, to runne away.
1385Her. I am amaz'd, and know not what to say.
Exeunt.
Ob. This is thy negligence: still thou mistak'st,
Or else commitst thy knaueries wilfully.
Puck. Beleeue mee, king of shadowes, I mistooke.
Did not you tell mee, I shoud know the man,
1390By the Athenian garments, he had on?
And, so farre blamelesse prooues my enterprise,
That I haue nointed an Athenians eyes:
And so farre am I glad, it so did sort,
As this their iangling I esteeme a sport.
1395Ob. Thou seest, these louers seeke a place to fight:
Hy therefore Robin, ouercast the night,
The starry welkin couer thou anon,
With drooping fogge as blacke as Acheron,
And lead these teasty Riuals so astray,
1400As one come not within anothers way.
Like to Lysander, sometime frame thy tongue:
Then stirre Demetrius vp, with bitter wrong:
And sometime raile thou like Demetrius:
And from each other, looke thou lead them thus;
1405Till ore their browes, death-counterfaiting, sleepe,
With leaden legs, and Batty wings doth creepe:
F
Then