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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    Not Peer Reviewed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
    GReat Deputie, the Welkins Vicegerent, and sole domi-
    nator of Nauar, my soules earths God, and bodies fo-
    string patrone:
    Cost. Not a vvord 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 vvith 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
    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
    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