Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: Roger Apfelbaum
Peer Reviewed

Romeo and Juliet (Quarto 2, 1599)


1105
Enter Benuolio and Mercutio.
Mer. Where the deule should this Romeo be? came hee not
home to night?
Ben. Not to his fathers, I spoke with his man.
Mer. Why that same pale hard hearted wench, that Rosaline,
1110Torments him so, that he will sure run mad.
Ben. Tibalt, the kinsman to old Capulet, hath sent a leter to his
fathers house.
Mer. A challenge on my life.
Ben. Romeo will answere it.
1115Mer. Any man that can write may answere a letter.
Ben. Nay, he wil answere the letters maister how he dares, be-
ing dared.
Mercu. Alas pooreRomeo, he is alreadie dead, stabd with a
white wenches blacke eye, runne through the eare with a loue
1120song, the very pinne of his heart, cleft with the blinde
bowe-boyes but-shaft, and is hee a man to encounter Ty-
balt?
Ro. Why what is Tybalt?
Mer. More then Prince of Cats. Oh hees the couragious
1125captain of Complements: he fights as you sing pricksong, keeps
time, distance & proportion, he rests, his minum rests, one two,
and the third in your bosome: the very butcher of a silke but-
ton, a dualist a dualist, a gentleman of the very first house of the
first and second cause, ah the immortall Passado, the Punto re-
1130uerso, the Hay.
Ben. The what?
Mer. The Pox of such antique lisping affecting phantacies,
these new tuners of accent: by Iesu a very good blade, a very
tall man, a very good whore. Why is not this a lamētable thing
1135graundsir, that we should be thus afflicted with these straunge
flies: these fashion-mongers, these pardons mees, who stand so
much on the new forme, that they cannot sit at ease on the old
bench. O their bones, their bones.
1140
Enter Romeo.
Ben. Here comes Romeo, here comes Romeo.
Mer. Without his Roe, like a dried Hering, O flesh, flesh,
how art thou fishified? now is he for the numbers that Petrach
flowed in: Laura to his Lady, was a kitchin wench, marrie
1145she had a better loue to berime her: Dido a dowdie, Cleopatra
a Gipsie, Hellen and Hero, hildings and harlots: Thisbie a grey
eye or so, but not to the purpose. Signior Romeo, Bonieur, theres
a French salutation to your French slop: you gaue vs the coun-
terfeit fairly last night.
Ro. Goodmorrow to you both, what counterfeit did I giue
you?
Mer. The slip sir, the slip, can you not conceiue?
Ro. Pardon good Mercutio,my businesse was great, and in
1155such a case as mine, a man may straine curtesie.
Mer. Thats as much as to say, such a case as yours, constrains
a man to bow in the hams.
Ro. Meaning to cursie.
Mer. Thou hast most kindly hit it.
1160Ro. A most curtuous exposition.
Mer. Nay I am the very pinck of curtesie.
Ro. Pinck for flower.
Mer. Right.
Ro. Why then is my pump well flowerd.
1165 Mer. Sure wit follow me this ieast, now till thou hast worne
out thy pump, that when the single sole of it is worne, the ieast
may remaine after the wearing, soly singular.
Ro. O single solde ieast, solie singular for thesinglenesse.
Mer. Come betweene vs good Benuolio, my wits faints.
Ro. Swits and spurs, swits and spurres, or ile crie a match.
Mer. Nay, if our wits run the wildgoose chase, I am done:
1175For thou hast more of the wildgoose in one of thy wits, then I
am sure I haue in my whole fiue. Was I with you there for the
goose?
Ro. Thou wast neuer with me for any thing, when thou wast
not there for the goose.
1180Mer. I will bite thee by the eare for that ieast.
Rom. Nay good goose bite not.
Mer. Thy wit is very bitter sweeting, it is a most sharp sawce.
Rom. And is it not then well seru'd in to a sweete goose?
1185 Mer. Oh heres a wit of Cheuerell, that stretches from an
ynch narrow, to an ell broad.
Ro. I stretch it out for that word broad, which added to the
goose, proues thee farre and wide a broad goose.
Mer. Why is not this better now then groning for loue, now
1190art thou sociable, now art thou Romeo: now art thou what thou
art, by art as well as by nature, for this driueling loue is like a
great naturall that runs lolling vp and downe to hide his bable
in a hole.
Ben. Stop there, stop there.
1195 Mer. Thou desirest me to stop in my tale against the haire.
Ben. Thou wouldst else haue made thy tale large.
Mer. O thou art deceiu'd; I would haue made it short, for I
was come to the whole depth of my tale, and meant indeed to
occupie the argument no longer.
Ro. Heeres goodly geare.
Enter Nurse and her man.
A sayle, a sayle.
Mer. Two two, a shert and a smocke.
Nur. Peter:
1205Peter. Anon.
Nur. My fan Peter.
Mer. Good Peter to hide her face, for her fans the fairer face.
Nur. God ye goodmorrow Gentlemen.
1210Mer. God ye goodden faire gentlewoman.
Nur. Is it good den?
Mer. Tis no lesse I tell yee, for the bawdie hand of the dyal,
is now vpon the prick of noone.
Nur. Out vpon you, what a man are you?
1215 Ro. One gentlewoman, that Godhath made, himself to mar.
Nur. By my troth it is well said, for himselfe to mar quoth a?
Gētlemē any of you tel me wher I may find the yong Romeo?
1220Ro. I can tell you, but young Romeo will be older when you
haue found him, then he was when you sought him: I am the
youngest of that name, for fault of a worse.
Nur. You say well.
Mer. Yea is the worst wel, very wel took, ifaith, wisely, wisely.
Nur. If you be he sir, I desire some confidence with you.
Ben. She will endite him to some supper.
Mer. A baud, a baud, a baud. So ho.
1230Ro. What hast thou found?
Mer. No hare sir, vnlesse a hare sir in a lenten pie, that is some-
thing stale and hoare ere it be spent.
An old hare hoare, and an old hare hoare is very good meate in
lent.
1235But a hare that is hore, is too much for a score, when it hores ere
it be spent.
Romeo, will you come to your fathers? weele to dinner thither.
Ro. I will follow you.
1240 Mer. Farewell auncient Lady, farewell Lady, Lady, Lady.
Exeunt.
Nur. I pray you sir, what sawcie merchant was this that was
so full of his roperie?
1245 Ro. A gentleman Nurse, that loues to heare himselfe talke,
and will speake more in a minute, then hee will stand too in a
moneth.
Nur. And a speake any thing against me, Ile take him downe,
and a were lustier then he is, and twentie such Iacks: and if I
1250cannot, ile finde those that shall: scuruie knaue, I am none
of his flurt gills, I am none of his skaines mates, and thou must
stand by too and suffer euery knaue to vse me at his plea-
sure.
Pet. I saw no man vse you at his pleasure: if I had, my weapon
1255shuld quickly haue bin out: I warrant you, I dare draw assoone
as an other man, if I see occasion in a goodquarel, & the law on
my side.
Nur. Now afore God, I am so vext, that euery part about me
quiuers, skuruie knaue: pray you sir a word: and as I told you,
1260my young Lady bid me enquire you out, what she bid me say, I
will keepe to my selfe: but first let me tell ye, if ye should leade
her in a fooles paradise, as they say, it were a very grosse kind of
behauior as they say: for the Gentlewoman is yong: and there-
fore, if you should deale double with her, truly it were an ill
1265thing to be offred to any Gentlewoman, and very weake dea-
ling.
Rom. Nurse, commend me to thy Lady and Mistresse, I pro-
test unto thee.
Nur. Good heart, and yfaith I wil tel her as much: Lord, Lord,
1270she will be a ioyfull woman.
Ro. What wilt thou tell her Nurse? thou dooest not marke
me?
Nur. I will tell her sir, that you do protest, which as I take it,
is a gentlemanlike offer.
1275 Ro. Bid her deuise some means to come to shrift this afternoon,
And there she shall at Frier Lawrence Cell
Be shrieued and married: here is for thy paines.
Nur. No truly sir not a penny.
Ro. Go too, I say you shall.
1280Nur. This afternoone sir, well she shall be there.
Ro. And stay good Nurse behinde the Abbey wall,
Within this houre my man shall be with thee,
And bring thee cordes made like a tackled stayre,
Which to the high topgallant of my ioy,
1285Must be my conuoy in the secret night.
Farewell be trustie, and ile quit thy paines:
Farewel, commend me to thy Mistresse.
Nur. Now God in heauen blesse thee, harke you sir.
Ro. What saist thou my deare Nurse?
1290 Nur. Is your man secret, did you nere here say, two may keep
counsell putting one away.
Ro. Warrant thee my mans as true as steele.
Nur. Well sir, my Mistresse is the sweetest Lady, Lord, Lord,
when twas a litle prating thing. O there is a Noble man in town
1295one Paris, that would faine lay knife aboord: but she good soule
had as leeue see a tode, a very tode as see him: I anger her some-
times, and tell her that Paris is the properer man, but ile warrant
you, when I say so, she lookes as pale as any clout in the versall
world, doth not Rosemarie and Romeo begin both with a let-
1300ter?
Ro. I Nurse, what of that?Both with an R.
Nur. A mocker thats the dog, name R. is for the no, I know
it begins with some other letter, and she hath the pretiest sen-
tentious of it, of you and Rosemarie, that it would do you good
1305to heare it.
Ro. Commend me to thy Lady.
Nur. I a thousand times Peter.
Pet. Anon.
Nur. Before and apace.
1309.1
Exit.