Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: David Bevington
Peer Reviewed

As You Like It (Modern)


2530[5.3]
Enter [Touchstone the] Clown and Audrey.
Touchstone Tomorrow is the joyful day, Audrey; tomorrow will we be married.
Audrey I do desire it with all my heart; and I hope it is 2535no dishonest desire to desire to be a woman of the world. Here come two of the banished Duke's pages.
Enter two Pages.
First Page Well met, honest gentleman.
Touchstone By my troth, well met. Come sit, sit, and a song.
[They sit.]
2540Second Page We are for you. Sit i'th' middle.
First Page Shall we clap into't roundly, without hawking, or spitting, or saying we are hoarse, which are the only prologues to a bad voice?
Second Page I'faith, i'faith, and both in a tune, like two 2545gypsies on a horse.
Song.
Both Pages
It was a lover and his lass,
With a hey, and a ho, and a hey nonino,
That o'er the green corn-field did pass
2550In spring time, the only pretty ring time,
When birds do sing, hey ding a ding, ding.
Sweet lovers love the spring.
Between the acres of the rye,
With a hey, and a ho, and a hey nonino,
These pretty country folks would lie,
2560In spring time, the only pretty ring time,
When birds do sing, hey ding a ding, ding.
Sweet lovers love the spring.
This carol they began that hour,
With a hey, and a ho, and a hey nonino,
How that a life was but a flower,
In spring time, the only pretty ring time,
When birds do sing, hey ding a ding, ding.
Sweet lovers love the spring.
And therefore take the present time,
With a hey, and a ho, and a hey nonino,
2555For love is crownèd with the prime,
In spring time, the only pretty ring time,
When birds do sing, hey ding a ding, ding.
Sweet lovers love the spring.
2565Touchstone Truly, young gentlemen, though there was no great matter in the ditty, yet the note was very untuneable.
First Page You are deceived, sir; we kept time, we lost not our time.
Touchstone By my troth, yes; I count it but time lost to hear 2570such a foolish song. God b'wi' you, and God mend your voices. -- Come, Audrey.
Exeunt [the Pages one way, Touchstone and Audrey another].