Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: Gretchen Minton
Not Peer Reviewed

Much Ado About Nothing (Quarto 1, 1600)

Much adoe
Claudio My liege, your Highnesse nowe may doe mee
Pedro My loue is thine to teach, teach it but how,
And thou shalt see how apt it is to learne
Any hard lesson that may do thee good.
Clau. Hath Leonato any sonne, my lord?
285Pedro No childe but Hero, shees his onely heire:
Doost thou affect her Claudio?
Claudio O my lord,
When you went onward on this ended action,
I lookt vpon her with a souldiers eie,
290That likt, but had a rougher taske in hand,
Than to driue liking to the name of loue:
But now I am returnde, and that warre-thoughts,
Haue left their places vacant: in their roomes,
Come thronging soft and delicate desires,
295All prompting mee how faire yong Hero is,
Saying I likt her ere I went to warres.
Pedro Thou wilt be like a louer presently,
And tire the hearer with a booke of words,
If thou dost loue faire Hero, cherish it,
300And I wil breake with hir, and with her father,
And thou shalt haue her: wast not to this end,
That thou beganst to twist so fine a storie?
Clau. How sweetly you do minister to loue,
That know loues griefe by his complexion!
But lest my liking might too sodaine seeme,
305I would haue salude it with a longer treatise.
Pedro What need the bridge much broder then the flood?
The fairest graunt is the necessitie:
Looke what wil serue is fit: tis once, thou louest,
And I wil fit thee with the remedie,
310I know we shall haue reuelling to night,
I wil assume thy part in some disguise,
And tell faire Hero I am Claudio,
And in her bosome ile vnclaspe my heart,
And take her hearing prisoner with the force