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  • Title: Love's Labor's Lost (Quarto 1, 1598)
  • 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    Not Peer Reviewed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 (Quarto 1, 1598)

    Bero. Yet I haue a tricke,
    2350Of the olde rage: beare with me, I am sicke.
    Ile leaue it by degrees; soft, let vs see,
    Lord haue mercie on vs
    , on those three,
    They are infected, in their hartes it lyes:
    They haue the Plague, and caught it of your eyes,
    2355These Lordes are visited, you are not free,
    For the Lords tokens on you do I see.
    Quee. No, they are free that gaue these tokens to vs.
    Berow. Our states are forfait, seeke not to vndoo vs.
    Rosa. It is not so, for how can this be true,
    2360That you stand forfait, being those that sue.
    Bero. Peace, for I will not haue to doe with you.
    Rosa. Nor shall not, if I do as I intende.
    Bero. Speake for your selues, my wit is at an ende.
    King. Teach vs sweet Madame, for our rude transgression
    2365Some faire excuse.
    Quee. The fairest is confession.
    Were not you here but euen now, disguysde?
    King. Madame, I was.
    Quee. And were you well aduisde?
    2370King. I was faire Madame.
    Quee. When you then were heere,
    What did you whisper in your Ladies eare?
    King. That more then all the world, I did respect her.
    Quee. When she shall challenge this, you wil reiect her.
    King. Vpon mine honour no.
    Quee. Peace peace, forbeare: your Oth once broke, you
    force not to forsweare.
    King. Despise me when I breake this oth of mine.
    2380Quee. I will, and therefore keepe it. Rosaline,
    What did the Russian whisper in your eare?
    Rosa. Madame, he swore that he did hold me deare,
    As precious ey-sight, and did value me
    Aboue this Worlde: adding thereto more ouer,
    2385That he would wed me, or els die my Louer.
    Quee. God giue thee ioy of him: the Noble Lord
    Most honourablie doth vphold his word,
    called Loues Labor's lost.