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About this text

  • Title: As You Like It (Folio 1, 1623)
  • Editor: David Bevington
  • ISBN: 978-1-55058-369-4

    Copyright David Bevington. This text may be freely used for educational, non-profit purposes; for all other uses contact the Editor.
    Author: William Shakespeare
    Editor: David Bevington
    Peer Reviewed

    As You Like It (Folio 1, 1623)

    Scœna Secunda.
    Enter Rosalind, and Cellia.
    Cel. I pray thee Rosalind, sweet my Coz, be merry.
    Ros. Deere Cellia; I show more mirth then I am mi-
    stresse of, and would you yet were merrier: vnlesse you
    could teach me to forget a banished father, you must not
    175learne mee how to remember any extraordinary plea-
    Cel. Heerein I see thou lou'st mee not with the full
    waight that I loue thee; if my Vncle thy banished father
    had banished thy Vncle the Duke my Father, so thou
    180hadst beene still with mee, I could haue taught my loue
    to take thy father for mine; so wouldst thou, if the truth
    of thy loue to me were so righteously temper'd, as mine
    is to thee.
    Ros. Well, I will forget the condition of my estate,
    185to reioyce in yours.
    Cel. You know my Father hath no childe, but I, nor
    none is like to haue; and truely when he dies, thou shalt
    be his heire; for what hee hath taken away from thy fa-
    ther perforce, I will render thee againe in affection: by
    190mine honor I will, and when I breake that oath, let mee
    turne monster: therefore my sweet Rose, my deare Rose,
    be merry.
    Ros. From henceforth I will Coz, and deuise sports:
    let me see, what thinke you of falling in Loue?
    195Cel. Marry I prethee doe, to make sport withall: but
    loue no man in good earnest, nor no further in sport ney-
    ther, then with safety of a pure blush, thou maist in ho-
    nor come off againe.
    Ros. What shall be our sport then?
    200Cel. Let vs sit and mocke the good houswife For-
    tune from her wheele, that her gifts may henceforth bee
    bestowed equally.
    Ros. I would wee could doe so: for her benefits are
    mightily misplaced, and the bountifull blinde woman
    205doth most mistake in her gifts to women.
    Cel. 'Tis true, for those that she makes faire, she scarce
    makes honest, & those that she makes honest, she makes
    very illfauouredly.
    Ros. Nay now thou goest from Fortunes office to Na-
    210tures: Fortune reignes in gifts of the world, not in the
    lineaments of Nature.
    Enter Clowne.
    Cel. No; when Nature hath made a faire creature,
    may she not by Fortune fall into the fire? though nature
    215hath giuen vs wit to flout at Fortune, hath not Fortune
    sent in this foole to cut off the argument?
    Ros. Indeed there is fortune too hard for nature, when
    fortune makes natures naturall, the cutter off of natures
    220Cel. Peraduenture this is not Fortunes work neither,
    but Natures, who perceiueth our naturall wits too dull
    to reason of such goddesses, hath sent this Naturall for
    our whetstone. for alwaies the dulnesse of the foole, is
    the whetstone of the wits. How now Witte, whether
    225wander you?
    Clow. Mistresse, you must come away to your farher.
    Cel. Were you made the messenger?
    Clo. No by mine honor, but I was bid to come for you
    Ros. Where learned you that oath foole?
    230Clo. Of a certaine Knight, that swore by his Honour
    they were good Pan-cakes, and swore by his Honor the
    Mustard was naught: Now Ile stand to it, the Pancakes
    were naught, and the Mustard was good, and yet was
    not the Knight forsworne.
    235Cel. How proue you that in the great heape of your
    Ros. I marry, now vnmuzzle your wisedome.
    Clo. Stand you both forth now: stroke your chinnes,
    and sweare by your beards that I am a knaue.
    240Cel. By our beards (if we had them) thou art.
    Clo. By my knauerie (if I had it) then I were: but if
    you sweare by that that is not, you are not forsworn: no
    more was this knight swearing by his Honor, for he ne-
    uer had anie; or if he had, he had sworne it away, before
    245euer he saw those Pancakes, or that Mustard.
    Cel. Prethee, who is't that thou means't?
    Clo. One that old Fredericke your Father loues.
    Ros. My Fathers loue is enough to honor him enough;
    speake no more of him, you'l be whipt for taxation one
    250of these daies.
    Clo. The more pittie that fooles may not speak wise-
    ly, what Wisemen do foolishly.
    Cel. By my troth thou saiest true: For, since the little
    wit that fooles haue was silenced, the little foolerie that
    255wise men haue makes a great shew; Heere comes Mon-
    sieur the Beu.
    Enter le Beau.
    Ros. With his mouth full of newes.
    Cel. Which he vvill put on vs, as Pigeons feed their
    Ros. Then shal we be newes-cram'd.
    Cel. All the better: we shalbe the more Marketable.
    Boon-iour Monsieur le Beu, what's the newes?
    Le Ben. Faire Princesse,
    265you haue lost much good sport.
    Cel. Sport: of what colour?
    Le Beu. What colour Madame? How shall I aun-
    swer you?
    Ros. As wit and fortune will.
    270Clo. Or as the destinies decrees.
    Cel. Well said, that was laid on with a trowell.
    Clo. Nay, if I keepe not my ranke.
    Ros. Thou loosest thy old smell.
    Le Beu. You amaze me Ladies: I would haue told
    275you of good wrastling, which you haue lost the sight of.
    Ros. Yet tell vs the manner of the Wrastling.
    Le Beu. I wil tell you the beginning: and if it please
    your Ladiships, you may see the end, for the best is yet
    to doe, and heere where you are, they are comming to
    280performe it.
    Cel. Well, the beginning that is dead and buried.
    Le Beu. There comes an old man, and his three sons.
    Cel. I could match this beginning with an old tale.
    Le Beu. Three proper yong men, of excellent growth
    285and presence.
    Ros. With bils on their neckes: Be it knowne vnto
    all men by these presents.
    Le Beu. The eldest of the three, wrastled with Charles
    the Dukes Wrastler, which Charles in a moment threw
    290him, and broke three of his ribbes, that there is little
    hope of life in him: So he seru'd the second, and so the
    third: yonder they lie, the poore old man their Father,
    making such pittiful dole ouer them, that all the behol-
    ders take his part with weeping.
    295Ros. Alas.
    Clo. But what is the sport Monsieur, that the Ladies
    haue lost?
    Le Beu. Why this that I speake of.
    Clo. Thus men may grow wiser euery day. It is the
    300first time that euer I heard breaking of ribbes was sport
    for Ladies.
    Cel. Or I, I promise thee.
    Ros. But is there any else longs to see this broken
    Musicke in his sides? Is there yet another doates vpon
    305rib-breaking? Shall we see this wrastling Cosin?
    Le Beu. You must if you stay heere, for heere is the
    place appointed for the wrastling, and they are ready to
    performe it.
    Cel. Yonder sure they are comming. Let vs now stay
    310and see it.
    Flourish. Enter Duke, Lords, Orlando, Charles,
    and Attendants.
    Duke. Come on, since the youth will not be intreated
    His owne perill on his forwardnesse.
    315Ros. Is yonder the man??
    Le Beu. Euen he, Madam.
    Cel. Alas, he is too yong: yet he looks successefully
    Du. How now daughter, and Cousin:
    Are you crept hither to see the wrastling?
    320Ros. I my Liege, so please you giue vs leaue.
    Du. You wil take little delight in it, I can tell you
    there is such oddes in the man: In pitie of the challen-
    gers youth, I would faine disswade him, but he will not
    bee entreated. Speake to him Ladies, see if you can
    325mooue him.
    Cel. Call him hether good Monsieuer Le Beu.
    Duke. Do so: Ile not be by.
    Le Beu. Monsieur the Challenger, the Princesse cals
    for you.
    330Orl. I attend them with all respect and dutie.
    Ros. Young man, haue you challeng'd Charles the
    Orl. No faire Princesse: he is the generall challenger,
    I come but in as others do, to try with him the strength
    335of my youth.
    Cel. Yong Gentleman, your spirits are too bold for
    your yeares: you haue seene cruell proofe of this mans
    strength, if you saw your selfe with your eies, or knew
    your selfe with your iudgment, the feare of your aduen-
    340ture would counsel you to a more equall enterprise. We
    pray you for your owne sake to embrace your own safe-
    tie, and giue ouer this attempt.
    Ros. Do yong Sir, your reputation shall not therefore
    be misprised: we wil make it our suite to the Duke, that
    345the wrastling might not go forward.
    Orl. I beseech you, punish mee not with your harde
    thoughts, wherein I confesse me much guiltie to denie
    so faire and excellent Ladies anie thing. But let your
    faire eies, and gentle wishes go with mee to my triall;
    350wherein if I bee foil'd, there is but one sham'd that vvas
    neuer gracious: if kil'd, but one dead that is willing to
    be so: I shall do my friends no wrong, for I haue none to
    lament me: the world no iniurie, for in it I haue nothing:
    onely in the world I fil vp a place, which may bee better
    355supplied, when I haue made it emptie.
    Ros. The little strength that I haue, I would it vvere
    with you.
    Cel. And mine to eeke out hers.
    Ros. Fare you well: praie heauen I be deceiu'd in you.
    360Cel. Your hearts desires be with you.
    Char. Come, where is this yong gallant, that is so
    desirous to lie with his mother earth?
    Orl. Readie Sir, but his will hath in it a more modest
    365Duk. You shall trie but one fall.
    Cha. No, I warrant your Grace you shall not entreat
    him to a second, that haue so mightilie perswaded him
    from a first.
    Orl. You meane to mocke me after: you should not
    370haue mockt me before: but come your waies.
    Ros. Now Hercules, be thy speede yong man.
    Cel. I would I were inuisible, to catch the strong fel-
    low by the legge.
    Ros. Oh excellent yong man.
    375Cel. If I had a thunderbolt in mine eie, I can tell who
    should downe.
    Duk. No more, no more.
    Orl. Yes I beseech your Grace, I am not yet well
    380Duk. How do'st thou Charles?
    Le Beu. He cannot speake my Lord.
    Duk. Beare him awaie:
    What is thy name yong man?
    Orl. Orlando my Liege, the yongest sonne of Sir Ro-
    385land de Boys.
    Duk. I would thou hadst beene son to some man else,
    The world esteem'd thy father honourable,
    But I did finde him still mine enemie:
    Thou should'st haue better pleas'd me with this deede,
    390Hadst thou descended from another house:
    But fare thee well, thou art a gallant youth,
    I would thou had'st told me of another Father.
    Exit Duke.
    Cel. Were I my Father (Coze) would I do this?
    395Orl. I am more proud to be Sir Rolands sonne,
    His yongest sonne, and would not change that calling
    To be adopted heire to Fredricke.
    Ros. My Father lou'd Sir Roland as his soule,
    And all the world was of my Fathers minde,
    400Had I before knowne this yong man his sonne,
    I should haue giuen him teares vnto entreaties,
    Ere he should thus haue ventur'd.
    Cel. Gentle Cosen,
    Let vs goe thanke him, and encourage him:
    405My Fathers rough and enuious disposition
    Sticks me at heart: Sir, you haue well deseru'd,
    If you doe keepe your promises in loue;
    But iustly as you haue exceeded all promise,
    Your Mistris shall be happie.
    410Ros. Gentleman,
    Weare this for me: one out of suites with fortune
    That could giue more, but that her hand lacks meanes.
    Shall we goe Coze?
    Cel. I: fare you well faire Gentleman.
    415Orl. Can I not say, I thanke you? My better parts
    Are all throwne downe, and that which here stands vp
    Is but a quintine, a meere liuelesse blocke.
    Ros. He cals vs back: my pride fell with my fortunes,
    Ile aske him what he would: Did you call Sir?
    420Sir, you haue wrastled well, and ouerthrowne
    More then your enemies.
    Cel. Will you goe Coze?
    Ros. Haue with you: fare you well.
    Orl. What passion hangs these wsights vpō my toong?
    425I cannot speake to her, yet she vrg'd conference.
    Enter Le Beu.
    O poore Orlando! thou art ouerthrowne
    Or Charles, or something weaker masters thee.
    Le Beu. Good Sir, I do in friendship counsaile you
    430To leaue this place; Albeit you haue deseru'd
    High commendation, true applause, and loue;
    Yet such is now the Dukes condition,
    That he misconsters all that you haue done:
    The Duke is humorous, what he is indeede
    435More suites you to conceiue, then I to speake of.
    Orl. I thanke you Sir; and pray you tell me this,
    Which of the two was daughter of the Duke,
    That here was at the Wrastling?
    Le Beu. Neither his daughter, if we iudge by manners,
    440But yet indeede the taller is his daughter,
    The other is daughter to the banish'd Duke,
    And here detain'd by her vsurping Vncle
    To keepe his daughter companie, whose loues
    Are deerer then the naturall bond of Sisters:
    445But I can tell you, that of late this Duke
    Hath tane displeasure 'gainst his gentle Neece,
    Grounded vpon no other argument,
    But that the people praise her for her vertues,
    And pittie her, for her good Fathers sake;
    450And on my life his malice 'gainst the Lady
    Will sodainly breake forth: Sir, fare you well,
    Hereafter in a better world then this,
    I shall desire more loue and knowledge of you.
    Orl. I rest much bounden to you: fare you well.
    455Thus must I from the smoake into the smother,
    From tyrant Duke, vnto a tyrant Brother.
    But heauenly Rosaline.