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  • Title: Love's Labor's Lost (Folio 1, 1623)
  • Editor: Timothy Billings

  • Copyright Timothy Billings. This text may be freely used for educational, non-profit purposes; for all other uses contact the Editor.
    Author: William Shakespeare
    Editor: Timothy Billings
    Not Peer Reviewed

    Love's Labor's Lost (Folio 1, 1623)

    Loues Labour's lost

    1 Actus primus.

    Enter Ferdinand King of Nauarre, Berowne, Longauill, and
    5LEt Fame, that all hunt after in their liues,
    Liue registred vpon our brazen Tombes,
    And then grace vs in the disgrace of death:
    when spight of cormorant deuouring Time,
    Th'endeuour of this present breath may buy:
    10That honour which shall bate his sythes keene edge,
    And make vs heyres of all eternitie.
    Therefore braue Conquerours, for so you are,
    That warre against your owne affections,
    And the huge Armie of the worlds desires.
    15Our late edict shall strongly stand in force,
    Nauar shall be the wonder of the world.
    Our Court shall be a little Achademe,
    Still and contemplatiue in liuing Art.
    You three, Berowne, Dumaine, and Longauill,
    20Haue sworne for three yeeres terme, to liue with me:
    My fellow Schollers, and to keepe those statutes
    That are recorded in this scedule heere.
    Your oathes are past, and now subscribe your names:
    That his owne hand may strike his honour downe,
    25That violates the smallest branch heerein:
    If you are arm'd to doe, as sworne to do,
    Subscribe to your deepe oathes, and keepe it to.
    Longauill. I am resolu'd, 'tis but a three yeeres fast:
    The minde shall banquet, though the body pine,
    30Fat paunches haue leane pates: and dainty bits,
    Make rich the ribs, but bankerout the wits.
    Dumane. My louing Lord, Dumane is mortified,
    The grosser manner of these worlds delights,
    He throwes vpon the grosse worlds baser slaues:
    35To loue, to wealth, to pompe, I pine and die,
    With all these liuing in Philosophie.
    Berowne. I can but say their protestation ouer,
    So much, deare Liege, I haue already sworne,
    That is, to liue and study heere three yeeres.
    40But there are other strict obseruances:
    As not to see a woman in that terme,
    Which I hope well is not enrolled there.
    And one day in a weeke to touch no foode:
    And but one meale on euery day beside:
    45The which I hope is not enrolled there.
    And then to sleepe but three houres in the night,
    And not be seene to winke of all the day.
    When I was wont to thinke no harme all night,
    And make a darke night too of halfe the day:

    50Which I hope well is not enrolled there.
    O, these are barren taskes, too hard to keepe,
    Not to see Ladies, study, fast, not sleepe.
    Ferd. Your oath is past, to passe away from these.
    Berow. Let me say no my Liedge, and if you please,
    55I onely swore to study with your grace,
    And stay heere in your Court for three yeeres space.
    Longa. You swore to that Berowne, and to the rest.
    Berow. By yea and nay sir, than I swore in iest.
    What is the end of study, let me know?
    60Fer. Why that to know which else wee should not
    Ber. Things hid & bard (you meane) frõ cõmon sense.
    Ferd. I, that is studies god-like recompence.
    Bero. Come on then, I will sweare to studie so,
    65To know the thing I am forbid to know:
    As thus, to study where I well may dine,
    When I to fast expressely am forbid.
    Or studie where to meet some Mistresse fine,
    When Mistresses from common sense are hid.
    70Or hauing sworne too hard a keeping oath,
    Studie to breake it, and not breake my troth.
    If studies gaine be thus, and this be so,
    Studie knowes that which yet it doth not know,
    Sweare me to this, and I will nere say no.
    75Ferd. These be the stops that hinder studie quite,
    And traine our intellects to vaine delight.
    Ber. Why? all delights are vaine, and that most vaine
    Which with paine purchas'd, doth inherit paine,
    As painefully to poare vpon a Booke,
    80To seeke the light of truth, while truth the while
    Doth falsely blinde the eye-sight of his looke:
    Light seeeking light, doth light of light beguile:
    So ere you finde where light in darkenesse lies,
    Your light growes darke by losing of your eyes.
    85Studie me how to please the eye indeede,
    By fixing it vpon a fairer eye,
    Who dazling so, that eye shall be his heed,
    And giue him light that it was blinded by.
    Studie is like the heauens glorious Sunne,
    90That will not be deepe search'd with sawcy lookes:
    Small haue continuall plodders euer wonne,
    Saue base authoritie from others Bookes.
    These earthly Godfathers of heauens lights,
    That giue a name to euery fixed Starre,
    95Haue no more profit of their shining nights,
    Then those that walke and wot not what they are.
    Too much to know, is to know nought but fame:
    And euery Godfather can giue a name.
    Fer. How well hee's read, to reason against reading.
    100Dum. Proceeded well, to stop all good proceeding.
    Lon. Hee weedes the corne, and still lets grow the
    Ber. The Spring is neare when greene geesse are a
    105Dum. How followes that?
    Ber. Fit in his place and time.
    Dum. In reason nothing.
    Ber. Something then in rime.
    Ferd. Berowne is like an enuious sneaping Frost,
    110That bites the first borne infants of the Spring.
    Ber. Wel, say I am, why should proud Summer boast,
    Before the Birds haue any cause to sing?
    Why should I ioy in any abortiue birth?
    At Christmas I no more desire a Rose,
    115Then wish a Snow in Mayes new fangled showes:
    But like of each thing that in season growes.
    So you to studie now it is too late,
    That were to clymbe ore the house to vnlocke the gate.
    Fer. Well, sit you out: go home Berowne: adue.
    120Ber. No my good Lord, I haue sworn to stay with you.
    And though I haue for barbarisme spoke more,
    Then for that Angell knowledge you can say,
    Yet confident Ile keepe what I haue sworne,
    And bide the pennance of each three yeares day.
    125Giue me the paper, let me reade the same,
    And to the strictest decrees Ile write my name.
    Fer. How well this yeelding rescues thee from shame.
    Item. That no woman shall come within a mile
    of my Court.
    130Hath this bin proclaimed?
    Lon. Foure dayes agoe.
    Ber. Let's see the penaltie.
    On paine of loosing her tongue.
    Who deuis'd this penaltie?
    135Lon. Marry that did I.
    Ber. Sweete Lord, and why?
    Lon. To fright them hence with that dread penaltie,
    A dangerous law against gentilitie.
    Item, If any man be seene to talke with a woman with-
    140in the tearme of three yeares, hee shall indure such
    publique shame as the rest of the Court shall possibly
    Ber. This Article my Liedge your selfe must breake,
    For well you know here comes in Embassie
    145The French Kings daughter, with your selfe to speake:
    A Maide of grace and compleate maiestie,
    About surrender vp of Aquitaine:
    To her decrepit, sicke, and bed-rid Father.
    Therefore this Article is made in vaine,
    150Or vainly comes th'admired Princesse hither.
    Fer. What say you Lords?
    Why, this was quite forgot.
    Ber. So Studie euermore is ouershot,
    While it doth study to haue what it would,
    155It doth forget to doe the thing it should:
    And when it hath the thing it hunteth most,
    'Tis won as townes with fire, so won, so lost.
    Fer. We must of force dispence with this Decree,
    She must lye here on meere necessitie.
    160Ber. Necessity will make vs all forsworne
    Three thousand times within this three yeeres space:
    For euery man with his affects is borne,
    Not by might mastred, but by speciall grace.
    If I breake faith, this word shall breake for me,
    165I am forsworne on meere necessitie.
    So to the Lawes at large I write my name,
    And he that breakes them in the least degree,
    Stands in attainder of eternall shame.
    Suggestions are to others as to me:
    170But I beleeue although I seeme so loth,
    I am the last that will last keepe his oth.
    But is there no quicke recreation granted?
    Fer. I that there is, our Court you know is hanted
    With a refined trauailer of Spaine,
    175A man in all the worlds new fashion planted,
    That hath a mint of phrases in his braine:
    One, who the musicke of his owne vaine tongue,
    Doth rauish like inchanting harmonie:
    A man of complements whom right and wrong
    180Haue chose as vmpire of their mutinie.
    This childe of fancie that Armado hight,
    For interim to our studies shall relate,
    In high-borne words the worth of many a Knight:
    From tawnie Spaine lost in the worlds debate.
    185How you delight my Lords, I know not I,
    But I protest I loue to heare him lie,
    And I will vse him for my Minstrelsie.
    Bero. Armado is a most illustrious wight,
    A man of fire, new words, fashions owne Knight.
    190Lon. Costard the swaine and he, shall be our sport,
    And so to studie, three yeeres is but short.

    Enter a Constable with Costard with a Letter.

    Const. Which is the Dukes owne person.
    Ber. This fellow, What would'st?
    195Con. I my selfe reprehend his owne person, for I am
    his graces Tharborough: But I would see his own person
    in flesh and blood.
    Ber. This is he.
    Con. Signeor Arme, Arme commends you:
    200Ther's villanie abroad, this letter will tell you more.
    Clow. Sir the Contempts thereof are as touching
    Fer. A letter from the magnificent Armado.
    Ber. How low soeuer the matter, I hope in God for
    205high words.
    Lon. A high hope for a low heauen, God grant vs pa-
    Ber. To heare, or forbeare hearing.
    Lon. To heare meekely sir, and to laugh moderately,
    210or to forbeare both.
    Ber. Well sir, be it as the stile shall giue vs cause to
    clime in the merrinesse.
    Clo. The matter is to me sir, as concerning Iaquenetta.
    The manner of it is, I was taken with the manner.
    215Ber. In what manner?
    Clo. In manner and forme following sir all those three.
    I was seene with her in the Mannor house, sitting with
    her vpon the Forme, and taken following her into the
    Parke: which put to gether, is in manner and forme
    220following. Now sir for the manner; It is the manner
    of a man to speake to a woman, for the forme in some
    Ber. For the following sir.
    Clo. As it shall follow in my correction, and God de-
    225fend the right.
    Fer. Will you heare this Letter with attention?
    Ber. As we would heare an Oracle.
    Clo. Such is the simplicitie of man to harken after the
    230 Ferdinand.
    GReat Deputie, the Welkins Vicegerent, and sole domi-
    nator of Nauar, my soules earths God, and bodies fo-
    string patrone:
    Cost. Not a word of Costard yet.
    235Ferd. So it is.
    Cost. It may be so: but if he say it is so, he is in telling
    true: but so.
    Ferd. Peace,
    Clow. Be to me, and euery man that dares not fight.
    240Ferd. No words,
    Clow. Of other mens secrets I beseech you.
    So it is besieged with sable coloured melancholie, I
    did commend the blacke oppressing humour to the most whole-
    some Physicke of thy health-giuing ayre: And as I am a Gen-
    245tleman, betooke my selfe to walke: the time When? about the
    sixt houre, When beasts most grase, birds best pecke, and men
    sit downe to that nonrishment which is called supper: So much
    for the time When. Now for the ground Which? which I
    meane I walkt vpon, it is ycliped, Thy Parke. Then for the
    250place Where? where I meane I did encounter that obscene and
    most preposterous euent that draweth from my snow-white pen
    the ebon coloured Inke, which heere thou viewest, beholdest,
    suruayest, or seest. But to the place Where? It standeth
    North North-east and by East from the West corner of thy
    255curious knotted garden; There did I see that low spiri-
    ted Swaine, that base Minow of thy myrth, (Clown. Mee?)
    that vnletered small knowing soule, (Clow Me?)that shallow
    vassall (Clow. Still mee?) which as I remember, hight Co-
    stard, ( Clow. O me) sorted and consorted contrary to thy e-
    260stablished proclaymed Edict and Continet, Cannon: Which
    with, ô with, but with this I passion to say wherewith:
    Clo. With a Wench.
    With a childe of our Grandmother Eue, a female;
    or for thy more sweet vnderstanding a woman: him, I (as my
    265euer esteemed dutie prickes me on) haue sent to thee, to receiue
    the meed of punishment by thy sweet Graces Officer Anthony
    Dull, a man of good repute, carriage, bearing, & estimation.
    Anth. Me, an't shall please you? I am Anthony Dull.
    Ferd. For Iaquenetta (so is the weaker vessell called)
    270which I apprehended with the aforesaid Swaine, I keeper her
    as a vessell of thy Lawes furie, and shall at the least of thy
    sweet notice, bring her to triall. Thine in all complements of
    deuoted and heart-burning heat of dutie.
    Don Adriana de Armado.
    275Ber. This is not so well as I looked for, but the best
    that euer I heard.
    Fer. I the best, for the worst. But sirra, What say you
    to this?
    Clo. Sir I confesse the Wench.
    280Fer. Did you heare the Proclamation?
    Clo. I doe confesse much of the hearing it, but little
    of the marking of it.
    Fer. It was proclaimed a yeeres imprisoment to bee
    taken with a Wench.
    285Clow. I was taken with none sir, I was taken with a
    Fer. Well, it was proclaimed Damosell.
    Clo. This was no Damosell neyther sir, shee was a
    290Fer. It is so varried to, for it was proclaimed Virgin.
    Clo. If it were, I denie her Virginitie: I was taken
    with a Maide.
    Fer. This Maid will not serue your turne sir.
    Clo. This Maide will serue my turne sir.
    295Kin. Sir I will pronounce your sentence: You shall
    fast a Weeke with Branne and water.
    Clo. I had rather pray a Moneth with Mutton and
    Kin. And Don Armado shall be your keeper.
    300My Lord Berowne, see him deliuer'd ore,
    And goe we Lords to put in practice that,
    Which each to other hath so strongly sworne.
    Bero. Ile lay my head to any good mans hat,
    These oathes and lawes will proue an idle scorne.
    305Sirra, come on.
    Clo. I suffer for the truth sir: for true it is, I was ta-
    ken with Iaquenetta, and Iaquenetta is a true girle, and
    therefore welcome the sowre cup of prosperitie, afflicti-
    on may one day smile againe, and vntill then sit downe
    310sorrow. Exit.
    Enter Armado and Moth his Page.
    Arma. Boy, What signe is it when a man of great
    spirit growes melancholy?
    Boy. A great signe sir, that he will looke sad.
    315Brag. Why? sadnesse is one and the selfe-same thing
    deare impe.
    Boy. No no, O Lord sir no.
    Brag. How canst thou part sadnesse and melancholy
    my tender Iuuenall?
    320Boy. By a familiar demonstration of the working, my
    tough signeur.
    Brag. Why tough signeur? Why tough signeur?
    Boy. Why tender Iuuenall? Why tender Iuuenall?
    Brag. I spoke it tender Iuuenall, as a congruent apa-
    325thaton, appertaining to thy young daies, which we may
    nominate tender.
    Boy. And I tough signeur, as an appertinent title to
    your olde time, which we may name tough.
    Brag. Pretty and apt.
    330Boy. How meane you sir, I pretty, and my saying apt?
    or I apt, and my saying prettie?
    Brag. Thou pretty because little.
    Boy. Little pretty, because little: wherefore apt?
    Brag And therefore apt, because quicke.
    335Boy. Speake you this in my praise Master?
    Brag. In thy condigne praise.
    Boy. I will praise an Eele with the same praise.
    Brag. What? that an Eele is ingenuous.
    Boy. That an Eeele is quicke.
    340Brag. I doe say thou art quicke in answeres. Thou
    heat'st my bloud.
    Boy. I am answer'd sir.
    Brag. I loue not to be crost.
    Boy. He speakes the meere contrary, crosses loue not(him.
    345Br. I haue promis'd to study iij. yeres with the Duke.
    Boy. You may doe it in an houre sir.
    Brag. Impossible.
    Boy. How many is one thrice told?
    Bra. I am ill at reckning, it fits the spirit of a Tapster.
    350Boy. You are a gentleman and a gamester sir.
    Brag. I confesse both, they are both the varnish of a
    compleat man.
    Boy. Then I am sure you know how much the grosse
    summe of deus-ace amounts to.
    355Brag. It doth amount to one more then two.
    Boy. Which the base vulgar call three.
    Br. True. Boy. Why sir is this such a peece of study?
    Now here's three studied, ere you'll thrice wink, & how
    easie it is to put yeres to the word three, and study three
    360yeeres in two words, the dancing horse will tell you.
    Brag. A most fine Figure.
    Boy. To proue you a Cypher.
    Brag. I will heereupon confesse I am in loue: and as
    it is base for a Souldier to loue; so am I in loue with a
    365base wench. If drawing my sword against the humour
    of affection, would deliuer mee from the reprobate
    thought of it, I would take Desire prisoner, and ransome
    him to any French Courtier for a new deuis'd curtsie. I
    thinke scorne to sigh, me thinkes I should out-sweare
    370Cupid. Comfort me Boy, What great men haue beene
    in loue?
    Boy. Hercules Master.
    Brag. Most sweete Hercules: more authority deare
    Boy, name more; and sweet my childe let them be men
    375of good repute and carriage.
    Boy. Sampson Master, he was a man of good carriage,
    great carriage: for hee carried the Towne-gates on his
    backe like a Porter: and he was in loue.
    Brag. O well-knit Sampson, strong ioynted Sampson;
    380I doe excell thee in my rapier, as much as thou didst mee
    in carrying gates. I am in loue too. Who was Sampsons
    loue my deare Moth?
    Boy. A Woman, Master.
    Brag. Of what complexion?
    385Boy. Of all the foure, or the three, or the two, or one
    of the foure.
    Brag. Tell me precisely of what complexion?
    Boy. Of the sea-water Greene sir.
    Brag. Is that one of the foure complexions?
    390Boy. As I haue read sir, and the best of them too.
    Brag. Greene indeed is the colour of Louers: but to
    haue a Loue of that colour, methinkes Sampson had small
    reason for it. He surely affected her for her wit.
    Boy. It was so sir, for she had a greene wit.
    395Brag. My Loue is most immaculate white and red.
    Boy. Most immaculate thoughts Master, are mask'd
    vnder such colours.
    Brag. Define, define, well educated infant.
    Boy. My fathers witte, and my mothers tongue assist
    Brag. Sweet inuocation of a childe, most pretty and
    Boy. If shee be made of white and red,
    Her faults will nere be knowne:
    405For blush-in cheekes by faults are bred,
    And feares by pale white showne:
    Then if she feare, or be to blame,
    By this you shall not know,
    For still her cheekes possesse the same,
    410Which natiue she doth owe:
    A dangerous rime master against the reason of white
    and redde.
    Brag. Is there not a ballet Boy, of the King and the
    415Boy. The world was very guilty of such a Ballet some
    three ages since, but I thinke now 'tis not to be found: or
    if it were, it would neither serue for the writing, nor the
    Brag. I will haue that subiect newly writ ore, that I
    420may example my digression by some mighty president.
    Boy, I doe loue that Countrey girle that I tooke in
    the Parke with the rationall hinde Costard: she deserues
    Boy. To bee whip'd: and yet a better loue then my
    Brag. Sing Boy, my spirit grows heauy in ioue.
    Boy. And that's great maruell, louing a light wench.
    Brag. I say sing.
    Boy. Forbeare till this company be past.

    430 Enter Clowne, Constable, and Wench.

    Const. Sir, the Dukes pleasure, is that you keepe Co-
    stard safe, and you must let him take no delight, nor no
    penance, but hee must fast three daies a weeke: for this
    Damsell, I must keepe her at the Parke, shee is alowd for
    435the Day-woman. Fare you well. Exit.
    Brag. I do betray my selfe with blushing: Maide.
    Maid. Man.
    Brag. I wil visit thee at the Lodge.
    Maid. That's here by.
    440Brag. I know where it is situate.
    Mai. Lord how wise you are!
    Brag. I will tell thee wonders.
    Ma. With what face?
    Brag. I loue thee.
    445Mai. So I heard you say.
    Brag. And so farewell.
    Mai. Faire weather after you.
    Clo. Come Iaquenetta, away. Exeunt.
    Brag. Villaine, thou shalt fast for thy offences ere
    450thou be pardoned.
    Clo. Well sir, I hope when I doe it, I shall doe it on a
    full stomacke.
    Brag. Thou shalt be heauily punished.
    Clo. I am more bound to you then your fellowes, for
    455they are but lightly rewarded.
    Clo. Take away this villaine, shut him vp.
    Boy. Come you transgressing slaue, away.
    Clow. Let mee not bee pent vp sir, I will fast being
    460Boy. No sir, that were fast and loose: thou shalt to
    Clow. Well, if euer I do see the merry dayes of deso-
    lation that I haue seene, some shall see.
    Boy. What shall some see?
    465Clow. Nay nothing, Master Moth, but what they
    looke vpon. It is not for prisoners to be silent in their
    words, and therefore I will say nothing: I thanke God, I
    haue as little patience as another man, and therefore I
    can be quiet. Exit.
    470Brag. I doe affect the very ground (which is base)
    where her shooe (which is baser) guided by her foote
    (which is basest) doth tread. I shall be forsworn (which
    ia a great argument of falshood) if I loue. And how can
    that be true loue, which is falsly attempted? Loue is a fa-
    475miliar, Loue is a Diuell. There is no euill Angell but
    Loue, yet Sampson was so tempted, and he had an excel-
    lent strength: Yet was Salomon so seduced, and hee had
    a very good witte. Cupids Butshaft is too hard for Her-
    cules Clubbe, and therefore too much ods for a Spa-
    480niards Rapier: The first and second cause will not serue
    my turne: the Passado hee respects not, the Duello he
    regards not; his disgrace is to be called Boy, but his
    glorie is to subdue men. Adue Valour, rust Rapier, bee
    still Drum, for your manager is in loue; yea hee loueth.
    485Assist me some extemporall god of Rime, for I am sure I
    shall turne Sonnet. Deuise Wit, write Pen, for I am for
    whole volumes in folio. Exit.

    Finis Actus Primus.

    Actus Secunda.

    490Enter the Princesse of France, with three attending Ladies,
    and three Lords.

    Boyet. Now Madam summon vp your dearest spirits,
    Consider who the King your father sends:
    To whom he sends, and what's his Embassie.
    495Your selfe, held precious in the worlds esteeme,
    To parlee with the sole inheritour
    Of all perfections that a man may owe,
    Matchlesse Nauarre, the plea of no lesse weight
    Then Aquitaine, a Dowrie for a Queene.
    500Be now as prodigall of all deare grace,
    As Nature was in making Graces deare,
    When she did starue the generall world beside,
    And prodigally gaue them all to you.
    Queen. Good L. Boyet, my beauty though but mean,
    505Needs not the painted flourish of your praise:
    Beauty is bought by iudgement of the eye,
    Not vttred by base sale of chapmens tongues:
    I am lesse proud to heare you tell my worth,
    Then you much wiling to be counted wise,
    510In spending your wit in the praise of mine.
    But now to taske the tasker, good Boyet,
    Prin. You are not ignorant all-telling fame
    Doth noyse abroad Nauar hath made a vow,
    Till painefull studie shall out-weare three yeares,
    515No woman may approach his silent Court:
    Therefore to's seemeth it a needfull course,
    Before we enter his forbidden gates,
    To know his pleasure, and in that behalfe
    Bold of your worthinesse, we single you,
    520As our best mouing faire soliciter:
    Tell him, the daughter of the King of France,
    On serious businesse crauing quicke dispatch,
    Importunes personall conference with his grace.
    Haste, signifie so much while we attend,
    525Like humble visag'd suters his high will.
    Boy. Proud of imployment, willingly I goe. Exit.
    Prin. All pride is willing pride, and yours is so:
    Who are the Votaries my louing Lords, that are vow-
    fellowes with this vertuous Duke?
    530Lor. Longauill is one.
    Princ. Know you the man?
    1 Lady. I know him Madame at a marriage feast,
    Betweene L. Perigort and the beautious heire
    Of Iaques Fauconbridge solemnized.
    535In Normandie saw I this Longauill,
    A man of soueraigne parts he is esteem'd:
    Well fitted in Arts, glorious in Armes:
    Nothing becomes him ill that he would well.
    The onely soyle of his faire vertues glosse,
    540If vertues glosse will staine with any soile,
    Is a sharp wit match'd with too blunt a Will:
    Whose edge hath power to cut whose will still wills,
    It should none spare that come within his power.
    Prin. Some merry mocking Lord belike, ist so?
    545Lad. 1. They say so most, that most his humors know.
    Prin. Such short liu'd wits do wither as they grow.
    Who are the rest?
    2. Lad. The yong Dumaine, a well accomplisht youth,
    Of all that Vertue loue, for Vertue loued.
    550Most power to doe most harme, least knowing ill:
    For he hath wit to make an ill shape good,
    And shape to win grace though she had no wit.
    I saw him at the Duke Alansoes once,
    And much too little of that good I saw,
    555Is my report to his great worthinesse.
    Rossa. Another of these Students at that time,
    Was there with him, as I haue heard a truth.
    Berowne they call him, but a merrier man,
    Within the limit of becomming mirth,
    560I neuer spent an houres talke withall.
    His eye begets occasion for his wit,
    For euery obiect that the one doth catch,
    The other turnes to a mirth-mouing iest.
    Which his faire tongue (conceits expositor)
    565Deliuers in such apt and gracious words,
    That aged eares play treuant at his tales,
    And yonger hearings are quite rauished.
    So sweet and voluble is his discourse.
    Prin. God blesse my Ladies, are they all in loue?
    570That euery one her owne hath garnished,
    With such bedecking ornaments of praise.
    Ma. Heere comes Boyet.

    Enter Boyet.

    Prin. Now, what admittance Lord?
    575Boyet. Nauar had notice of your faire approach,
    And he and his competitors in oath,
    Were all addrest to meete you gentle Lady
    Before I came: Marrie thus much I haue learnt,
    He rather meanes to lodge you in the field,
    580Like one that comes heere to besiege his Court,
    Then seeke a dispensation for his oath:
    To let you enter his vnpeopled house.

    Enter Nauar, Longauill, Dumaine, and Berowne.

    Heere comes Nauar.
    585Nau. Faire Princesse, welcom to the Court of Nauar.
    Prin. Faire I giue you backe againe, and welcome I
    haue not yet: the roofe of this Court is too high to bee
    yours, and welcome to the wide fields, too base to be
    590Nau. You shall be welcome Madam to my Court.
    Prin. I wil be welcome then, Conduct me thither.
    Nau. Heare me deare Lady, I haue sworne an oath.
    Prin. Our Lady helpe my Lord, he'll be forsworne.
    Nau. Not for the world faire Madam, by my will.
    595Prin. Why, will shall breake it will, and nothing els.
    Nau. Your Ladiship is ignorant what it is.
    Prin. Were my Lord so, his ignorance were wise,
    Where now his knowledge must proue ignorance.
    I heare your grace hath sworne out Houseekeeping:
    600'Tis deadly sinne to keepe that oath my Lord,
    And sinne to breake it:
    But pardon me, I am too sodaine bold,
    To teach a Teacher ill beseemeth me.
    Vouchsafe to read the purpose of my comming,
    605And sodainly resolue me in my suite.
    Nau. Madam, I will, if sodainly I may.
    Prin. You will the sooner that I were away,
    For you'll proue periur'd if you make me stay.
    Berow. Did not I dance with you in Brabant once?
    610Rosa. Did not I dance with you in Brabant once?
    Ber. I know you did.
    Rosa. How needlesse was it then to ask the question?
    Ber. You must not be so quicke.
    Rosa. 'Tis long of you yt spur me with such questions.
    615Ber. Your wit's too hot, it speeds too fast, 'twill tire.
    Rosa. Not till it leaue the Rider in the mire.
    Ber. What time a day?
    Rosa. The howre that fooles should aske.
    Ber. Now faire befall your maske.
    620Rosa. Faire fall the face it couers.
    Ber. And send you many louers.
    Rosa. Amen, so you be none.
    Ber. Nay then will I be gone.
    Kin. Madame, your father heere doth intimate,
    625The paiment of a hundred thousand Crownes,
    Being but th'one halfe, of an intire summe,
    Disbursed by my father in his warres.
    But say that he, or we, as neither haue
    Receiu'd that summe; yet there remaines vnpaid
    630A hundred thousand more: in surety of the which,
    One part of Aquitaine is bound to vs,
    Although not valued to the moneys worth.
    If then the King your father will restore
    But that one halfe which is vnsatisfied,
    635We will giue vp our right in Aquitaine,
    And hold faire friendship with his Maiestie:
    But that it seemes he little purposeth,
    For here he doth demand to haue repaie,
    An hundred thousand Crownes, and not demands
    640One paiment of a hundred thousand Crownes,
    To haue his title liue in Aquitaine.
    Which we much rather had depart withall,
    And haue the money by our father lent,
    Then Aquitane, so guelded as it is.
    645Deare Princesse, were not his requests so farre
    From reasons yeelding, your faire selfe should make
    A yeelding 'gainst some reason in my brest,
    And goe well satisfied to France againe.
    Prin. You doe the King my Father too much wrong,
    650And wrong the reputation of your name,
    In so vnseeming to confesse receyt
    Of that which hath so faithfully beene paid.
    Kin. I doe protest I neuer heard of it,
    And if you proue it, Ile repay it backe,
    655Or yeeld vp Aquitaine.
    Prin. We arrest your word:
    Boyet, you can produce acquittances
    For such a summe, from speciall Officers,
    Of Charles his Father.
    660Kin. Satisfie me so.
    Boyet. So please your Grace, the packet is not come
    Where that and other specialties are bound,
    To morrow you shall haue a sight of them.
    Kin. It shall suffice me; at which enterview,
    665All liberall reason would I yeeld vnto:
    Meane time, receiue such welcome at my hand,
    As honour, without breach of Honour may
    Make tender of, to thy true worthinesse.
    You may not come faire Princesse in my gates,
    670But heere without you shall be so receiu'd,
    As you shall deeme your selfe lodg'd in my heart,
    Though so deni'd farther harbour in my house:
    Your owne good thoughts excuse me, and farewell,
    To morrow we shall visit you againe.
    675Prin. Sweet health & faire desires consort your grace.
    Kin. Thy own wish wish I thee, in euery place. Exit.
    Boy. Lady, I will commend you to my owne heart.
    La. Ro. Pray you doe my commendations,
    I would be glad to see it.
    680Boy. I would you heard it grone.
    La. Ro. Is the soule sicke?
    Boy. Sicke at the heart.
    La. Ro. Alacke, let it bloud.
    Boy. Would that doe it good?
    685La. Ro. My Phisicke saies I.
    Boy. Will you prick't with your eye.
    La. Ro. No poynt, with my knife.
    Boy. Now God saue thy life.
    La. Ro. And yours from long liuing.
    690Ber. I cannot stay thanks-giuing. Exit.

    Enter Dumane.
    Dum. Sir, I pray you a word: What Lady is that same?
    Boy. The heire of Alanson, Rosalin her name.
    Dum. A gallant Lady, Mounsier fare you well.
    695Long. I beseech you a word: what is she in the white?
    Boy. A woman somtimes, if you saw her in the light.
    Long. Perchance light in the light: I desire her name.
    Boy. Shee hath but one for her selfe,
    To desire that were a shame.
    700Long. Pray you sir, whose daughter?
    Boy. Her Mothers, I haue heard.
    Long. Gods blessing a your beard.
    Boy. Good sir be not offended,
    Shee is an heyre of Faulconbridge.
    705Long. Nay, my choller is ended:
    Shee is a most sweet Lady. Exit. Long.
    Boy. Not vnlike sir, that may be.

    Enter Beroune.
    Ber. What's her name in the cap.
    710Boy. Katherine by good hap.
    Ber. Is she wedded, or no.
    Boy. To her will sir, or so.
    Ber. You are welcome sir, adiew.
    Boy. Fare well to me sir, and welcome to you. Exit.
    715La. Ma. That last is Beroune, the mery mad-cap Lord.
    Not a word with him, but a iest.
    Boy. And euery iest but a word.
    Pri. It was well done of you to take him at his word.
    Boy. I was as willing to grapple, as he was to boord.
    720La. Ma. Two hot Sheepes marie:
    And wherefore not Ships?
    Boy. No Sheepe (sweet Lamb) vnlesse we feed on your(lips.
    La. You Sheepe & I pasture: shall that finish the iest?
    Boy. So you grant pasture for me.
    725La. Not so gentle beast.
    My lips are no Common, though seuerall they be.
    Bo. Belonging to whom?
    La. To my fortunes and me.
    Prin. Good wits wil be iangling, but gentles agree.
    730This ciuill warre of wits were much better vsed
    On Nauar and his bookemen, for heere 'tis abus'd.
    Bo. If my obseruation (which very seldome lies
    By the hearts still rhetoricke, disclosed with eyes)
    Deceiue me not now, Nauar is infected.
    735Prin. With what?
    Bo. With that which we Louers intitle affected.
    Prin. Your reason.
    Bo. Why all his behauiours doe make their retire,
    To the court of his eye, peeping thorough desire.
    740His hart like an Agot with your print impressed,
    Proud with his forme, in his eie pride expressed.
    His tongue all impatient to speake and not see,
    Did stumble with haste in his eie-sight to be,
    All sences to that sence did make their repaire,
    745To feele onely looking on fairest of faire:
    Me thought all his sences were lockt in his eye,
    As Iewels in Christall for some Prince to buy.
    Who tendring their own worth from whence they were (glast,
    Did point out to buy them along as you past.
    750His faces owne margent did coate such amazes,
    That all eyes saw his eies inchanted with gazes.
    Ile giue you Aquitaine, and all that is his,
    And you giue him for my sake, but one louing Kisse.
    Prin. Come to our Pauillion, Boyet is disposde.
    755Bro. But to speak that in words, which his eie hath dis-(clos'd.
    I onelie haue made a mouth of his eie,
    By adding a tongue, which I know will not lie.
    Lad. Ro. Thou art an old Loue-monger, and speakest
    760Lad. Ma. He is Cupids Grandfather, and learnes news
    of him.
    Lad.2. Then was Venus like her mother, for her fa-
    ther is but grim.
    Boy. Do you heare my mad wenches?
    765La. 1. No.
    Boy. What then, do you see?
    Lad. 2. I, our way to be gone.
    Boy. You are too hard for me. Exeunt omnes.

    Actus Tertius.

    770 Enter Broggart and Boy.
    Bra. Warble childe, make passionate my sense of hea-
    Boy. Concolinel.
    775Brag. Sweete Ayer, go tendernesse of yeares: take
    this Key, giue enlargement to the swaine, bring him fe-
    stinatly hither: I must imploy him in a letter to my
    Boy. Will you win your loue with a French braule?
    780Bra. How meanest thou, brauling in French?
    Boy. No my compleat master, but to Iigge off a tune
    at the tongues end, canarie to it with the feete, humour
    it with turning vp your eie: sigh a note and sing a note,
    sometime through the throate: if you swallowed loue
    785with singing, loue sometime through: nose as if you
    snuft vp loue by smelling loue with your hat penthouse-
    like ore the shop of your eies, with your armes crost on
    your thinbellie doublet, like a Rabbet on a spit, or your
    hands in your pocket, like a man after the old painting,
    790and keepe not too long in one tune, but a snip and away:
    these are complements, these are humours, these betraie
    nice wenches that would be betraied without these, and
    make them men of note: do you note men that most are
    affected to these?
    795Brag. How hast thou purchased this experience?
    Boy. By my penne of obseruation.
    Brag. But O, but O.
    Boy. The Hobbie-horse is forgot.
    Bra. Cal'st thou my loue Hobbi-horse.
    800Boy. No Master, the Hobbie-horse is but a Colt, and
    and your Loue perhaps, a Hacknie:
    But haue you forgot your Loue?
    Brag. Almost I had.
    Boy. Negligent student, learne her by heart.
    805Brag. By heart, and in heart Boy.
    Boy. And out of heart Master: all those three I will
    Brag. What wilt thou proue?
    Boy. A man, if I liue (and this) by, in, and without, vp-
    810on the instant: by heart you loue her, because your heart
    cannot come by her: in heart you loue her, because your
    heart is in loue with her: and out of heart you loue her,
    being out of heart that you cannot enioy her.
    Brag. I am all these three.
    815Boy. And three times as much more, and yet nothing
    at all.
    Brag. Fetch hither the Swaine, he must carrie mee a
    Boy. A message well simpathis'd, a Horse to be em-
    820bassadour for an Asse.
    Brag. Ha, ha, What saiest thou?
    Boy. Marrie sir, you must send the Asse vpon the Horse
    for he is verie slow gated: but I goe.
    Brag. The way is but short, away.
    825Boy. As swift as Lead sir.
    Brag. Thy meaning prettie ingenious, is not Lead a
    mettall heauie, dull, and slow?
    Boy. Minnime honest Master, or rather Master no.
    Brad. I say Lead is slow.
    830Boy. You are too swift sir to say so.
    Is that Lead slow which is fir'd from a Gunne?
    Brag. Sweete smoke of Rhetorike,
    He reputes me a Cannon, and the Bullet that's he:
    I shoote thee at the Swaine.
    835Boy. Thump then, and I flee.
    Bra. A most acute Iuuenall, voluble and free of grace,
    By thy fauour sweet Welkin, I must sigh in thy face.
    Most rude melancholie, Valour giues thee place.
    My Herald is return'd.

    840 Enter Page and Clowne.

    Pag.A wonder Master, here's a Costard broken in a
    Ar. Some enigma, some riddle, come, thy Lenuoy
    845Clo. No egma, no riddle, no lenuoy, no salue, in thee
    male sir. Or sir, Plantan, a plaine Plantan: no lenuoy, no
    lenuoy, no Salue sir, but a Plantan.
    Ar. By vertue thou inforcest laughter, thy sillie
    thought, my spleene, the heauing of my lunges prouokes
    850me to rediculous smyling: O pardon me my stars, doth
    the inconsiderate take salue for lenuoy, and the word len-
    uoy for a salue?
    Pag. Doe the wise thinke them other, is not lenuoy a
    855Ar. No Page, it is an epilogue or discourse to make (plaine,
    Some obscure precedence that hath tofore bin faine.
    Now will I begin your morrall, and do you follow with
    my lenuoy.
    The Foxe, the Ape, and the Humble-Bee,
    860 Were still at oddes, being but three.
    Arm. Vntill the Goose came out of doore,
    Staying the oddes by adding foure.
    Pag. A good Lenuoy, ending in the Goose: would you
    desire more?
    865Clo. The Boy hath sold him a bargaine, a Goose, that's flat
    Sir, your penny-worth is good, and your Goose be fat.
    To sell a bargaine well is as cunning as fast and loose:
    Let me see a fat Lenuoy, I that's a fat Goose.
    Ar. Come hither, come hither:
    870How did this argument begin?
    Boy. By saying that a Costard was broken in a shin.
    Then cal'd you for the Lenuoy.
    Clow. True, and I for a Plantan:
    Thus came your argument in:
    875Then the Boyes fat Lenuoy, the Goose that you bought,
    And he ended the market.
    Ar. But tell me: How was there a Costard broken in
    a shin?
    Pag. I will tell you sencibly.
    880Clow. Thou hast no feeling of it Moth,
    I will speake that Lenuoy.
    I Costard running out, that was safely within,
    Fell ouer the threshold, and broke my shin.
    Arm. We will talke no more of this matter.
    885Clow. Till there be more matter in the shin.
    Arm. Sirra Costard, I will infranchise thee.
    Clow. O, marrie me to one Francis, I smell some Len-
    uoy, some Goose in this.
    Arm. By my sweete soule, I meane, setting thee at li-
    890bertie. Enfreedoming thy person: thou wert emured,
    restrained, captiuated, bound.
    Clow. True, true, and now you will be my purgation,
    and let me loose.
    Arm. I giue thee thy libertie, set thee from durance,
    895and in lieu thereof, impose on thee nothing but this:
    Beare this significant to the countrey Maide Iaquenetta:
    there is remuneration, for the best ward of mine honours
    is rewarding my dependants. Moth, follow.
    Pag. Like the sequell I.
    900Signeur Costard adew. Exit.
    Clow. My sweete ounce of mans flesh, my in-conie
    Iew: Now will I looke to his remuneration.
    Remuneration, O, that's the Latine word for three-far-
    things: Three-farthings remuneration, What's the price
    905of this yncle? i.d. no, Ile giue you a remuneration: Why?
    It carries it remuneration: Why? It is a fairer name then
    a French-Crowne. I will neuer buy and sell out of this

    Enter Berowne.

    910Ber. O my good knaue Costard, exceedingly well met.
    Clow. Pray you sir, How much Carnation Ribbon
    may a man buy for a remuneration?
    Ber. What is a remuneration?
    Cost. Marrie sir, halfe pennie farthing.
    915Ber. O, Why then three farthings worth of Silke.
    Cost. I thanke your worship, God be wy you.
    Ber. O stay slaue, I must employ thee:
    As thou wilt win my fauour, good my knaue,
    Doe one thing for me that I shall intreate.
    920Clow. When would you haue it done sir?
    Ber. O this after-noone.
    Clo. Well, I will doe it sir: Fare you well.
    Ber. O thou knowest not what it is.
    Clo. I shall know sir, when I haue done it.
    925Ber. Why villaine thou must know first.
    Clo. I wil come to your worship to morrow morning.
    Ber. It must be done this after-noone,
    Harke slaue, it is but this:
    The Princesse comes to hunt here in the Parke,
    930And in her traine there is a gentle Ladie:
    When tongues speak sweetly, then they name her name,
    And Rosaline they call her, aske for her:
    And to her white hand see thou do commend
    This seal'd-vp counsaile. Ther's thy guerdon: goe.
    935Clo. Gardon, O sweete gardon, better then remune-
    ration, a leuenpence-farthing better: most sweete gar-
    don. I will doe it sir in print: gardon, remuneration.
    Ber. O, and I forsooth in loue,
    940I that haue beene loues whip?
    A verie Beadle to a humerous sigh: A Criticke,
    Nay, a night-watch Constable.
    A domineering pedant ore the Boy,
    Then whom no mortall so magnificent,
    945This wimpled, whyning, purblinde waiward Boy,
    This signior Iunios gyant drawfe, don Cupid,
    Regent of Loue-rimes, Lord of folded armes,
    Th'annointed soueraigne of sighes and groanes:
    Liedge of all loyterers and malecontents:
    950Dread Prince of Placcats, King of Codpeeces.
    Sole Emperator and great generall
    Of trotting Parrators (O my little heart.)
    And I to be a Corporall of his field,
    And weare his colours like a Tumblers hoope.
    955What? I loue, I sue, I seeke a wife,
    A woman that is like a Germane Cloake,
    Still a repairing: euer out of frame,
    And neuer going a right, being a Watch:
    But being watcht, that it may still goe right.
    960Nay, to be periurde, which is worst of all:
    And among three, to loue the worst of all,
    A whitly wanton, with a veluet brow.
    With two pitch bals stucke in her face for eyes.
    I, and by heauen, one that will doe the deede,
    965Though Argus were her Eunuch and her garde.
    And I to sigh for her, to watch for her,
    To pray for her, go to: it is a plague
    That Cupid will impose for my neglect,
    Of his almighty dreadfull little might.
    970Well, I will loue, write, sigh, pray, shue, grone,
    Some men must loue my Lady, and some Ione.

    Actus Quartus.

    Enter the Princesse, a Forrester, her Ladies, and
    her Lords.
    975Qu. Was that the King that spurd his horse so hard,
    Against the steepe vprising of the hill?
    Boy. I know not, but I thinke it was not he.
    Qu. Who ere a was, a shew'd a mounting minde:
    Well Lords, to day we shall haue our dispatch,
    980On Saterday we will returne to France.
    Then Forrester my friend, Where is the Bush
    That we must stand and play the murtherer in?
    For. Hereby vpon the edge of yonder Coppice,
    A Stand where you may make the fairest shoote.
    985Qu. I thanke my beautie, I am faire that shoote,
    And thereupon thou speak'st the fairest shoote.
    For. Pardon me Madam, for I meant not so.
    Qu. What, what? First praise me, & then again say no.
    O short liu'd pride. Not faire? alacke for woe.
    990For. Yes Madam faire.
    Qu. Nay, neuer paint me now,
    Where faire is not, praise cannot mend the brow.
    Here (good my glasse) take this for telling true:
    Faire paiment for foule words, is more then due.
    995For. Nothing but faire is that which you inherit.
    Qu. See, see, my beautie will be sau'd by merit.
    O heresie in faire, fit for these dayes,
    A giuing hand, though foule, shall haue faire praise.
    But come, the Bow: Now Mercie goes to kill,
    1000And shooting well, is then accounted ill:
    Thus will I saue my credit in the shoote,
    Not wounding, pittie would not let me do't:
    If wounding, then it was to shew my skill,
    That more for praise, then purpose meant to kill.
    1005And out of question, so it is sometimes:
    Glory growes guiltie of detested crimes,
    When for Fames sake, for praise an outward part,
    We bend to that, the working of the hart.
    As I for praise alone now seeke to spill
    1010The poore Deeres blood, that my heart meanes no ill.
    Boy. Do not curst wiues hold that selfe-soueraigntie
    Onely for praise sake, when they striue to be
    Lords ore their Lords?
    Qu. Onely for praise, and praise we may afford,
    1015To any Lady that subdewes a Lord.

    Enter Clowne.

    Boy. Here comes a member of the common-wealth.
    Clo. God dig-you-den all, pray you which is the head
    1020Qu. Thou shalt know her fellow, by the rest that haue
    no heads.
    Clo. Which is the greatest Lady, the highest?
    Qu. The thickest, and the tallest.
    Clo. The thickest, & the tallest: it is so, truth is truth.
    1025And your waste Mistris, were as slender as my wit,
    One a these Maides girdles for your waste should be fit.
    Are not you the chiefe womã? You are the thickest here?
    Qu. What's your will sir? What's your will?
    Clo. I haue a Letter from Monsier Berowne,
    1030To one Lady Rosaline.
    Qu. O thy letter, thy letter: He's a good friend of mine.
    Stand a side good bearer.
    Boyet, you can carue,
    Breake vp this Capon.
    1035Boyet. I am bound to serue.
    This Letter is mistooke: it importeth none here:
    It is writ to Iaquenetta.
    Qu. We will reade it, I sweare.
    Breake the necke of the Waxe, and euery one giue eare.
    1040 Boyet reades.
    BY heauen, that thou art faire, is most infallible: true
    that thou art beauteous, truth it selfe that thou art
    louely: more fairer then faire, beautifull then beautious,
    truer then truth it selfe: haue comiseration on thy heroi-
    1045call Vassall. The magnanimous and most illustrate King
    Cophetua set eie vpon the pernicious and indubitate Beg-
    ger Zenelophon: and he it was that might rightly say, Ve-
    ni, vidi, vici: Which to annothanize in the vulgar, O
    base and obscure vulgar; videliset, He came, See, and o-
    1050uercame: hee came one; see, two; ouercame three:
    Who came? the King. Why did he come? to see. Why
    did he see? to ouercome. To whom came he? to the
    Begger. What saw he? the Begger. Who ouercame
    he? the Begger. The conclusion is victorie: On whose
    1055side? the King: the captiue is inricht: On whose side?
    the Beggers. The catastrophe is a Nuptiall: on whose
    side? the Kings: no, on both in one, or one in both. I am
    the King (for so stands the comparison) thou the Beg-
    ger, for so witnesseth thy lowlinesse. Shall I command
    1060thy loue? I may. Shall I enforce thy loue? I could.
    Shall I entreate thy loue? I will. What, shalt thou ex-
    change for ragges, roabes: for tittles titles, for thy selfe
    mee. Thus expecting thy reply, I prophane my lips on
    thy foote, my eyes on thy picture, and my heart on thy
    1065euerie part.

    Thine in the dearest designe of industrie,

    Don Adriana de Armatho.

    Thus dost thou heare the Nemean Lion roare,
    Gainst thee thou Lambe, that standest as his pray:
    1070Submissiue fall his princely feete before,
    And he from forrage will incline to play.
    But if thou striue (poore soule) what art thou then?
    Foode for his rage, repasture for his den.

    Qu. What plume of feathers is hee that indited this
    1075Letter? What veine? What Wethercocke? Did you
    euer heare better?
    Boy. I am much deceiued, but I remember the stile.
    Qu. Else your memorie is bad, going ore it erewhile.
    Boy. This Armado is a Spaniard that keeps here in court
    1080A Phantasime, a Monarcho, and one that makes sport
    To the Prince and his Booke-mates.
    Qu. Thou fellow, a word.
    Who gaue thee this Letter?
    Clow. I told you, my Lord.
    1085Qu. To whom should'st thou giue it?
    Clo. From my Lord to my Lady.
    Qu. From which Lord, to which Lady?
    Clo. From my Lord Berowne, a good master of mine,
    To a Lady of France, that he call'd Rosaline.
    1090Qu. Thou hast mistaken his letter. Come Lords away.
    Here sweete, put vp this, 'twill be thine another day.
    Boy. Who is the shooter? Who is the shooter?
    Rosa. Shall I teach you to know.
    1095Boy. I my continent of beautie.
    Rosa. Why she that beares the Bow. Finely put off.
    Boy. My Lady goes to kill hornes, but if thou marrie,
    Hang me by the necke, if hornes that yeare miscarrie.
    Finely put on.
    1100Rosa. Well then, I am the shooter.
    Boy. And who is your Deare?
    Rosa. If we choose by the hornes, your selfe come not
    neare. Finely put on indeede.
    Maria. You still wrangle with her Boyet, and shee
    1105strikes at the brow.
    Boyet. But she her selfe is hit lower:
    Haue I hit her now.
    Rosa. Shall I come vpon thee with an old saying, that
    was a man when King Pippin of France was a little boy, as
    1110touching the hit it.
    Boyet. So I may answere thee with one as old that
    was a woman when Queene Guinouer of Brittaine was a
    little wench, as touching the hit it.
    Thou canst not hit it, hit it, hit it,
    1115Thou canst not hit it my good man.
    Boy. I cannot, cannot, cannot:
    And I cannot, another can.
    Clo. By my troth most pleasant, how both did fit it.
    Mar. A marke marueilous well shot, for they both
    1120did hit.
    Boy. A mark, O marke but that marke: a marke saies
    my Lady.
    Let the mark haue a pricke in't, to meat at, if it may be.
    Mar. Wide a'th bow hand, yfaith your hand is out.
    1125Clo. Indeede a'must shoote nearer, or heele ne're hit
    the clout.
    Boy. And if my hand be out, then belike your hand
    is in.
    Clo. Then will shee get the vpshoot by cleauing the
    1130is in.
    Ma. Come, come, you talke greasely, your lips grow
    Clo. She's too hard for you at pricks, sir challenge her
    to boule.
    1135Boy. I feare too much rubbing: good night my good
    Clo. By my soule a Swaine, a most simple Clowne.
    Lord, Lord, how the Ladies and I haue put him downe.
    O my troth most sweete iests, most inconie vulgar wit,
    1140When it comes so smoothly off, so obscenely, as it were,
    so fit.
    Armathor ath to the side, O a most dainty man.
    To see him walke before a Lady, and to beare her Fan.
    To see him kisse his hand, and how most sweetly a will
    And his Page at other side, that handfull of wit,
    Ah heauens, it is most patheticall nit.
    Sowla, sowla. Exeunt.
    Shoote within.

    1150 Enter Dull, Holofernes, the Pedant and Nathaniel.

    Nat. Very reuerent sport truely, and done in the testi-
    mony of a good conscience.
    Ped. The Deare was (as you know) sanguis in blood,
    ripe as a Pomwater, who now hangeth like a Iewell in
    1155the eare of Celo the skie; the welken the heauen, and a-
    non falleth like a Crab on the face of Terra, the soyle, the
    land, the earth.
    Curat. Nath. Truely M. Holofernes, the epythithes are
    sweetly varied like a scholler at the least: but sir I assure
    1160ye, it was a Bucke of the first head.
    Hol. Sir Nathaniel, haud credo.
    Dul. 'Twas not a haud credo, 'twas a Pricket.
    Hol. Most barbarous intimation: yet a kinde of insi-
    nuation, as it were in via, in way of explication facere: as
    1165it were replication, or rather ostentare, to show as it were
    his inclination after his vndressed, vnpolished, vneduca-
    ted, vnpruned, vntrained, or rather vnlettered, or rathe-
    rest vnconfirmed fashion, to insert againe my haud credo
    for a Deare.
    1170Dul. I said the Deare was not a haud credo, 'twas a
    Hol. Twice sod simplicitie, bis coctus, O thou mon-
    ster Ignorance, how deformed doost thou looke.
    Nath. Sir hee hath neuer fed of the dainties that are
    1175bred in a booke.
    He hath not eate paper as it were:
    He hath not drunke inke.
    His intellect is not replenished, hee is onely an animall,
    onely sensible in the duller parts: and such barren plants
    1180are set before vs, that we thankfull should be: which we
    taste and feeling, are for those parts that doe fructifie in
    vs more then he.
    For as it would ill become me to be vaine, indiscreet, or
    a foole;
    1185So were there a patch set on Learning, to see him in a
    But omne bene say I, being of an old Fathers minde,
    Many can brooke the weather, that loue not the winde.
    Dul. You two are book-men: Can you tell by your
    1190wit, What was a month old at Cains birth, that's not fiue
    weekes old as yet?
    Hol. Dictisima goodman Dull, dictisima goodman
    Dul. What is dictima?
    1195Nath. A title to Phebe, to Luna, to the Moone.
    Hol. The Moone was a month old when Adam was
    no more.
    And wrought not to fiue-weekes when he came to fiue-(score.
    Th'allusion holds in the Exchange.
    1200Dul. 'Tis true indeede, the Collusion holds in the
    Hol. God comfort thy capacity, I say th'allusion holds
    in the Exchange.
    Dul. And I say the polusion holds in the Exchange:
    1205for the Moone is neuer but a month old: and I say be-
    side that, 'twas a Pricket that the Princesse kill'd.
    Hol. Sir Nathaniel, will you heare an extemporall
    Epytaph on the death of the Deare, and to humour
    the ignorant call'd the Deare, the Princesse kill'd a
    Nath. Perge, good M. Holofernes, perge, so it shall
    please you to abrogate scurilitie.
    Hol I will something affect a letter, for it argues
    1215 The prayfull Princesse pearst and prickt
    a prettie pleasing Pricket,
    Some say a Sore, but not a sore,
    till now made sore with shooting.
    The Dogges did yell, put ell to Sore,
    1220 then Sorell iumps from thicket:
    Or Pricket-sore, or else Sorell,
    the people fall a hooting.
    If Sore be sore, then ell to Sore,
    makes fiftie sores O sorell:
    1225 Of one sore I an hundred make
    by adding but one more L.
    Nath. A rare talent.
    Dul. If a talent be a claw, looke how he clawes him
    with a talent.
    1230Nath. This is a gift that I haue simple: simple, a foo-
    lish extrauagant spirit, full of formes, figures, shapes, ob-
    iects, Ideas, apprehensions, motions, reuolutions. These
    are begot in the ventricle of memorie, nourisht in the
    wombe of primater, and deliuered vpon the mellowing
    1235of occasion: but the gift is good in those in whom it is
    acute, and I am thankfull for it.
    Hol. Sir, I praise the Lord for you, and so may my
    parishioners, for their Sonnes are well tutor'd by you,
    and their Daughters profit very greatly vnder you: you
    1240are a good member of the common-wealth.
    Nath. Me hercle, If their Sonnes be ingennous, they
    shall want no instruction: If their Daughters be capable,
    I will put it to them. But Vir sapis qui pauca loquitur, a
    soule Feminine saluteth vs.

    1245 Enter Iaquenetta and the Clowne.

    Iaqu. God giue you good morrow M. Person.
    Nath. Master Person, quasi Person? And if one should
    be perst, Which is the one?
    Clo. Marry M. Schoolemaster, hee that is likest to a
    Nath. Of persing a Hogshead, a good luster of con-
    ceit in a turph of Earth, Fire enough for a Flint, Pearle
    enough for a Swine: 'tis prettie, it is well.
    Iaqu. Good Master Parson be so good as reade mee
    1255this Letter, it was giuen mee by Costard, and sent mee
    from Don Armatho: I beseech you reade it.
    Facile precor gellida, quando pecas omnia sub vm-
    , and so forth. Ah good old Mantuan, I
    may speake of thee as the traueiler doth of Venice, vem-
    1260chie, vencha, que non te vnde, que non te perreche. Old Man-
    tuam, old Mantuan. Who vnderstandeth thee not, vt re
    sol la mi fa: Vnder pardon sir, What are the contents? or
    rather as Horrace sayes in his, What my soule verses.
    Hol. I sir, and very learned.
    1265Nath. Let me heare a staffe, a stanze, a verse, Lege do-
    If Loue make me forsworne, how shall I sweare to loue?
    Ah neuer faith could hold, if not to beautie vowed.
    Though to my selfe forsworn, to thee Ile faithfull proue.
    1270Those thoughts to mee were Okes, to thee like Osiers
    Studie his byas leaues, and makes his booke thine eyes.
    Where all those pleasures liue, that Art would compre-
    1275If knowledge be the marke, to know thee shall suffice.
    Well learned is that tongue, that well can thee cõmend.
    All ignorant that soule, that sees thee without wonder.
    Which is to me some praise, that I thy parts admire;
    Thy eye Ioues lightning beares, thy voyce his dreadfull
    Which not to anger bent, is musique, and sweet fire.
    Celestiall as thou art, Oh pardon loue this wrong,
    That sings heauens praise, with such an earthly tongue.
    Ped. You finde not the apostraphas, and so misse the
    1285accent. Let me superuise the cangenet.
    Nath. Here are onely numbers ratified, but for the
    elegancy, facility, & golden cadence of poesie caret: O-
    uiddius Naso was the man. And why in deed Naso, but
    for smelling out the odoriferous flowers of fancy? the
    1290ierkes of inuention imitarie is nothing: So doth the
    Hound his master, the Ape his keeper, the tyred Horse
    his rider: But Damosella virgin, Was this directed to
    Iaq. I sir from one mounsier Berowne, one of the
    1295strange Queenes Lords.
    Nath. I will ouerglance the superscript.
    To the snow-white hand of the most beautious Lady Rosaline.
    I will looke againe on the intellect of the Letter, for
    the nomination of the partie written to the person writ-
    1300ten vnto.
    Your Ladiships in all desired imployment, Berowne.
    Per. Sir Holofernes, this Berowne is one of the Votaries
    with the King, and here he hath framed a Letter to a se-
    quent of the stranger Queenes: which accidentally, or
    1305by the way of progression, hath miscarried. Trip and
    goe my sweete, deliuer this Paper into the hand of the
    King, it may concerne much: stay not thy complement, I
    forgiue thy duetie, adue.
    Maid. Good Costard go with me:
    1310Sir God saue your life.
    Cost. Haue with thee my girle. Exit.
    Hol. Sir you haue done this in the feare of God very
    religiously: and as a certaine Father saith
    Ped. Sir tell not me of the Father, I do feare coloura-
    1315ble colours. But to returne to the Verses, Did they please
    you sir Nathaniel?
    Nath. Marueilous well for the pen.
    Peda. I do dine to day at the fathers of a certaine Pu-
    pill of mine, where if (being repast) it shall please you to
    1320gratifie the table with a Grace, I will on my priuiledge I
    haue with the parents of the foresaid Childe or Pupill,
    vndertake your bien vonuto, where I will proue those
    Verses to be very vnlearned, neither sauouring of
    Poetrie, Wit, nor Inuention. I beseech your So-
    Nat. And thanke you to: for societie (saith the text)
    is the happinesse of life.
    Peda. And certes the text most infallibly concludes it.
    Sir I do inuite you too, you shall not say me nay: pauca
    Away, the gentles are at their game, and we will to our
    recreation. Exeunt.

    Enter Berowne with a Paper in his hand, alone.

    Bero. The King he is hunting the Deare,
    1335I am coursing my selfe.
    They haue pitcht a Toyle, I am toyling in a pytch,
    pitch that defiles; defile, a foule word: Well, set thee
    downe sorrow; for so they say the foole said, and so say
    I, and I the foole: Well proued wit. By the Lord this
    1340Loue is as mad as Aiax, it kils sheepe, it kils mee, I a
    sheepe: Well proued againe a my side. I will not loue;
    if I do hang me: yfaith I will not. O but her eye: by
    this light, but for her eye, I would not loue her; yes, for
    her two eyes. Well, I doe nothing in the world but lye,
    1345and lye in my throate. By heauen I doe loue, and it hath
    taught mee to Rime, and to be mallicholie: and here is
    part of my Rime, and heere my mallicholie. Well, she
    hath one a'my Sonnets already, the Clowne bore it, the
    Foole sent it, and the Lady hath it: sweet Clowne, swee-
    1350ter Foole, sweetest Lady. By the world, I would not care
    a pin, if the other three were in. Here comes one with a
    paper, God giue him grace to grone.
    He stands aside. The King entreth.
    Kin. Ay mee!
    1355Ber. Shot by heauen: proceede sweet Cupid, thou hast
    thumpt him with thy Birdbolt vnder the left pap: in faith
    So sweete a kisse the golden Sunne giues not,
    To those fresh morning drops vpon the Rose,
    1360As thy eye beames, when their fresh rayse haue smot.
    The night of dew that on my cheekes downe flowes.
    Nor shines the siluer Moone one halfe so bright,
    Through the transparent bosome of the deepe,
    As doth thy face through teares of mine giue light:
    1365Thou shin'st in euery teare that I doe weepe,
    No drop, but as a Coach doth carry thee:
    So ridest thou triumphing in my woe.
    Do but behold the teares that swell in me,
    And they thy glory through my griefe will show:
    1370But doe not loue thy selfe, then thou wilt keepe
    My teares for glasses, and still make me weepe.
    O Queene of Queenes, how farre dost thou excell,
    No thought can thinke, nor tongue of mortall tell.
    How shall she know my griefes? Ile drop the paper.
    1375Sweet leaues shade folly. Who is he comes heere?

    Enter Longauile. The King steps aside.
    What Longauill, and reading: listen eare.
    Ber. Now in thy likenesse, one more foole appeare.
    Long. Ay me, I am forsworne.
    1380Ber. Why he comes in like a periure, wearing papers.
    Long. In loue I hope, sweet fellowship in shame.
    Ber. One drunkard loues another of the name.
    Lon. Am I the first yt haue been periur'd so?
    Ber. I could put thee in comfort, not by two that I (know,
    1385Thou makest the triumphery, the corner cap of societie,
    The shape of Loues Tiburne, that hangs vp simplicitie.
    Lon. I feare these stubborn lines lack power to moue.
    O sweet Maria, Empresse of my Loue,
    These numbers will I teare, and write in prose.
    1390Ber. O Rimes are gards on wanton Cupids hose,
    Disfigure not his Shop.
    Lon. This same shall goe. He reades the Sonnet.
    Did not the heauenly Rhetoricke of thine eye,
    'Gainst whom the world cannot hold argument,
    1395Perswade my heart to this false periurie?
    Vowes for thee broke deserue not punishment.
    A Woman I forswore, but I will proue,
    Thou being a Goddesse, I forswore not thee.
    My Vow was earthly, thou a heauenly Loue.
    1400Thy grace being gain'd, cures all disgrace in me.
    Vowes are but breath, and breath a vapour is.
    Then thou faire Sun, which on my earth doest shine,
    Exhalest this vapor-vow, in thee it is:
    If broken then, it is no fault of mine:
    1405If by me broke, What foole is not so wise,
    To loose an oath, to win a Paradise?
    Ber. This is the liuer veine, which makes flesh a deity.
    A greene Goose, a Coddesse, pure pure Idolatry.
    God amend vs, God amend, we are much out o'th'way.

    1410 Enter Dumaine.
    Lon. By whom shall I send this (company?) Stay.
    Bero. All hid, all hid, an old infant play,
    Like a demie God, here sit I in the skie,
    And wretched fooles secrets heedfully ore-eye.
    1415More Sacks to the myll. O heauens I haue my wish,
    Dumaine transform'd, foure Woodcocks in a dish.
    Dum. O most diuine Kate.
    Bero. O most prophane coxcombe.
    Dum. By heauen the wonder of a mortall eye.
    1420Bero. By earth she is not, corporall, there you lye.
    Dum. Her Amber haires for foule hath amber coted.
    Ber. An Amber coloured Rauen was well noted.
    Dum. As vpright as the Cedar.
    Ber. Stoope I say her shoulder is with-child.
    1425Dum. As faire as day.
    Ber. I as some daies, but then no sunne must shine.
    Dum. O that I had my wish?
    Lon. And I had mine.
    Kin. And mine too good Lord.
    1430Ber. Amen, so I had mine: Is not that a good word?
    Dum. I would forget her, but a Feuer she
    Raignes in my bloud, and will remembred be.
    Ber. A Feuer in your bloud, why then incision
    Would let her out in Sawcers, sweet misprision.
    1435Dum. Once more Ile read the Ode that I haue writ.
    Ber. Once more Ile marke how Loue can varry Wit.

    Dumane reades his Sonnet.

    On a day, alack the day:
    Loue, whose Month is euery May,
    1440Spied a blossome passing faire,
    Playing in the wanton ayre:
    Through the Veluet, leaues the winde,
    All vnseene, can passage finde.
    That the Louer sicke to death,
    1445Wish himselfe the heauens breath.
    Ayre (quoth he) thy cheekes may blowe,
    Ayre, would I might triumph so.
    But alacke my hand is sworne,
    Nere to plucke thee from thy throne:
    1450Vow alacke for youth vnmeete,
    Youth so apt to plucke a sweet.
    Doe not call it sinne in me,
    That I am forsworne for thee.
    Thou for whom Ioue would sweare,
    1455Iuno but an Æthiop were,
    And denie himselfe for Ioue.
    Turning mortall for thy Loue

    This will I send, and something else more plaine.
    That shall expresse my true-loues fasting paine.
    1460O would the King, Berowne and Longauill,
    Were Louers too, ill to example ill,
    Would from my forehead wipe a periur'd note:
    For none offend, where all alike doe dote.
    Lon. Dumaine, thy Loue is farre from charitie,
    1465That in Loues griefe desir'st societie:
    You may looke pale, but I should blush I know,
    To be ore-heard, and taken napping so.
    Kin. Come sir, you blush: as his, your case is such,
    You chide at him, offending twice as much.
    1470You doe not loue Maria? Longauile,
    Did neuer Sonnet for her sake compile;
    Nor neuer lay his wreathed armes athwart
    His louing bosome, to keepe downe his heart.
    I haue beene closely shrowded in this bush,
    1475And markt you both, and for you both did blush.
    I heard your guilty Rimes, obseru'd your fashion:
    Saw sighes reeke from you, noted well your passion.
    Aye me, sayes one! O Ioue, the other cries!
    On her haires were Gold, Christall the others eyes.
    1480You would for Paradise breake Faith and troth,
    And Ioue for your Loue would infringe an oath.
    What will Berowne say when that he shall heare
    Faith infringed, which such zeale did sweare.
    How will he scorne? how will he spend his wit?
    1485How will he triumph, leape, and laugh at it?
    For all the wealth that euer I did see,
    I would not haue him know so much by me.
    Bero. Now step I forth to whip hypocrisie.
    Ah good my Liedge, I pray thee pardon me.
    1490Good heart, What grace hast thou thus to reproue
    These wormes for louing, that art most in loue?
    Your eyes doe make no couches in your teares.
    There is no certaine Princesse that appeares.
    You'll not be periur'd, 'tis a hatefull thing:
    1495Tush, none but Minstrels like of Sonnetting.
    But are you not asham'd? nay, are you not