Internet Shakespeare Editions

About this text

  • Title: As You Like It (Modern)
  • 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 (Modern)

    Enter Touchstone and Audrey.
    Touchstone We shall find a time, Audrey. Patience, gentle Audrey.
    Audrey Faith, the priest was good enough, for all the old gentleman's saying.
    2345Touchstone A most wicked Sir Oliver, Audrey, a most vile Mar-text. But Audrey, there is a youth here in the forest lays claim to you.
    Audrey Ay, I know who 'tis. He hath no interest in me in the world. Here comes the man you mean.
    Enter William.
    Touchstone It is meat and drink to me to see a clown. By my troth, we that have good wits have much to answer for. We shall be flouting; we cannot hold.
    William Good ev'n, Audrey.
    2355Audrey God ye good ev'n, William.
    William And good ev'n to you, sir.
    [He removes his hat.]
    Touchstone Good ev'n, gentle friend. Cover thy head, cover thy head. Nay, prithee be covered. How old are you, friend?
    2360William Five-and-twenty, sir.
    Touchstone A ripe age. Is thy name William?
    William William, sir.
    Touchstone A fair name. Wast born i'th'forest here?
    William Ay, sir, I thank God.
    2365Touchstone "Thank God" -- a good answer. Art rich?
    William Faith, sir, so-so.
    Touchstone "So-so" is good, very good, very excellent good; and yet it is not; it is but so-so. 2370Art thou wise?
    William Ay, sir, I have a pretty wit.
    Touchstone Why, thou say'st well. I do now remember a saying: "The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool." The heathen philosopher, 2375when he had a desire to eat a grape, would open his lips when he put it into his mouth, meaning thereby that grapes were made to eat and lips to open. You do love this maid?
    William I do, sir.
    2380Touchstone Give me your hand. Art thou learned?
    William No, sir.
    Touchstone Then learn this of me: to have is to have. For it is a figure in rhetoric that drink, being poured out of a cup into a glass, by filling the one doth empty the 2385other; for all your writers do consent that ipse is he. Now, you are not ipse, for I am he.
    William Which he, sir?
    Touchstone He, sir, that must marry this woman. Therefore, you clown, abandon -- which is in the vulgar "leave" -- the 2390society -- which in the boorish is "company" -- of this female -- which in the common is "woman"; which together is: abandon the society of this female, or, clown, thou perishest; or, to thy better understanding, diest; or, to wit, I kill thee, make thee away, translate thy life into 2395death, thy liberty into bondage. I will deal in poison with thee, or in bastinado, or in steel; I will bandy with thee in faction, I will o'er-run thee with policy; I will kill thee a hundred and fifty ways. Therefore tremble and depart.
    2400Audrey Do, good William.
    William God rest you merry, sir.
    Enter Corin.
    Corin Our master and mistress seeks you. Come away, away!
    2405Touchstone Trip, Audrey, trip, Audrey! -- I attend, I attend.