Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: Roger Apfelbaum
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Romeo and Juliet (Folio 1, 1623)


The Tragedie Romeo and Juliet.
57

Mer. Tut, duns the Mouse, the Constables owne word,
If thou art dun, weele draw thee from the mire.
495Or saue your reuerence loue, wherein thou stickest
Vp to the eares, come we burne day-light ho.
Rom. Nay that's not so.
Mer. I meane sir I delay,
We wast our lights in vaine, lights, lights, by day;
500Take our good meaning, for our Iudgement sits
Fiue times in that, ere once in our fine wits.
Rom. And we meane well in going to this Maske,
But 'tis no wit to go.
Mer. Why may one aske?
505Rom. I dreampt a dreame to night.
Mer. And so did I.
Rom. Well what was yours?
Mer. That dreamers often lye.
Ro. In bed a sleepe while they do dreame things true.
510Mer. O then I see Queene Mab hath beene with you:
She is the Fairies Midwife, & she comes in shape no big-
ger then Agat-stone, on the fore-finger of an Alderman,
drawne with a teeme of little Atomies, ouer mens noses as
they lie asleepe: her Waggon Spokes made of long Spin-
515ners legs: the Couer of the wings of Grashoppers, her
Traces of the smallest Spiders web, her coullers of the
Moonshines watry Beames, her Whip of Crickets bone,
the Lash of Philome, her Waggoner, a small gray-coated
Gnat, not halfe so bigge as a round little Worme, prickt
520from the Lazie-finger of a man. Her Chariot is an emptie
Haselnut, made by the Ioyner Squirrel or old Grub, time
out a mind, the Faries Coach-makers: & in this state she
gallops night by night, through Louers braines: and then
they dreame of Loue. On Courtiers knees, that dreame on
525Cursies strait: ore Lawyers fingers, who strait dreamt on
Fees, ore Ladies lips, who strait on kisses dreame, which
oft the angry Mab with blisters plagues, because their
breath with Sweet meats tainted are. Sometime she gal-
lops ore a Courtiers nose, & then dreames he of smelling
530out a sute: & somtime comes she with Tith pigs tale, tick-
ling a Parsons nose as a lies asleepe, then he dreames of
another Benefice. Sometime she driueth ore a Souldiers
necke, & then dreames he of cutting Forraine throats, of
Breaches, Ambuscados, Spanish Blades: Of Healths fiue
535Fadome deepe, and then anon drums in his eares, at which
he startes and wakes; and being thus frighted, sweares a
prayer or two & sleepes againe: this is that very Mab that
plats the manes of Horses in the night: & bakes the Elk-
locks in foule sluttish haires, which once vntangled, much
540misfortune bodes,
This is the hag, when Maides lie on their backs,
That presses them, and learnes them first to beare,
Making them women of good carriage:
This is she.
545Rom. Peace, peace, Mercutio peace,
Thou talk'st of nothing.
Mer. True, I talke of dreames:
Which are the children of an idle braine,
Begot of nothing, but vaine phantasie,
550Which is as thin of substance as the ayre,
And more inconstant then the wind, who wooes
Euen now the frozen bosome of the North:
And being anger'd, puffes away from thence,
Turning his side to the dew dropping South.
555Ben. This wind you talke of blowes vs from our selues,
Supper is done, and we shall come too late.
Rom. I feare too early, for my mind misgiues,
Some consequence yet hanging in the starres,
Shall bitterly begin his fearefull date
560With this nights reuels, and expire the tearme
Of a despised life clos'd in my brest:
By some vile forfeit of vntimely death.
But he that hath the stirrage of my course,
Direct my sute: on lustie Gentlemen.
565Ben. Strike Drum.
They march about the Stage, and Seruingmen come forth
with their napkins.
Enter Seruant.
Ser. Where's Potpan, that he helpes not to take away?
570He shift a Trencher? he scrape a Trencher?
1. When good manners, shall lie in one or two mens
hands, and they vnwasht too, 'tis a foule thing.
Ser. Away with the Ioynstooles, remoue the Court-
cubbord, looke to the Plate: good thou, saue mee a piece
575of Marchpane, and as thou louest me, let the Porter let in
Susan Grindstone, and Nell, Anthonie and Potpan.
2. I Boy readie.
Ser. You are lookt for, and cal'd for, askt for, & sought
for, in the great Chamber.
5801 We cannot be here and there too, chearly Boyes,
Be brisk awhile, and the longer liuer take all.
Exeunt.
Enter all the Guests and Gentlewomen to the
Maskers.
5851. Capu. Welcome Gentlemen,
Ladies that haue their toes
Vnplagu'd with Cornes, will walke about with you:
Ah my Mistresses, which of you all
Will now deny to dance? She that makes dainty,
590She Ile sweare hath Cornes: am I come neare ye now?
Welcome Gentlemen, I haue seene the day
That I haue worne a Visor, and could tell
A whispering tale in a faire Ladies eare:
Such as would please: 'tis gone, 'tis gone, 'tis gone,
595You are welcome Gentlemen, come Musitians play:
Musicke plaies: and the dance.
A Hall, Hall, giue roome, and foote it Girles,
More light you knaues, and turne the Tables vp:
And quench the fire, the Roome is growne too hot.
600Ah sirrah, this vnlookt for sport comes well:
Nay sit, nay sit, good Cozin Capulet,
For you and I are past our dauncing daies:
How long 'ist now since last your selfe and I
Were in a Maske?
6052. Capu. Berlady thirty yeares.
1. Capu. What man: 'tis not so much, 'tis not so much,
'Tis since the Nuptiall of Lucentio,
Come Pentycost as quickely as it will,
Some fiue and twenty yeares, and then we Maskt.
6102. Cap. 'Tis more, 'tis more, his Sonne is elder sir:
His Sonne is thirty.
3. Cap. Will you tell me that?
His Sonne was but a Ward two yeares agoe.
Rom. What Ladie is that which doth inrich the hand
615Of yonder Knight?
Ser. I know not sir.
Rom. O she doth teach the Torches to burne bright:
It seemes she hangs vpon the cheeke of night,
As a rich Iewel in an Æthiops eare:
620Beauty too rich for vse, for earth too deare:
So shewes a Snowy Doue trooping with Crowes,
As yonder Lady ore her fellowes showes;
The measure done, Ile watch her place of stand,
And touching hers, make blessed my rude hand.
Did