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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    Not Peer Reviewed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)

    A pleasant conceited Comedie:

    gancie, facilitie, and golden cadence of poesie caret: Ouiddius
    Naso was the man. And why in deed Naso, but for smel-
    ling out the odoriferous flowers of fancie? the ierkes of in-
    1290uention imitarie is nothing: So doth the Hound his maister,
    the Ape his keeper, the tyred Horse his rider: But Damosella
    virgin, Was this directed to you?
    Iaq. I sir from one mounsier Berowne, one of the strange
    1295Queenes Lordes.
    Nath. I will ouerglaunce the superscript.
    To the snow-white hand of the most bewtious Lady Rosaline.
    I will looke againe on the intellect of the letter, for the no-
    mination of the partie written to the person written vnto.
    Your Ladiships in all desired imployment, Berowne.
    Ped. Sir Holofernes, this Berowne is one of the Votaries
    with the King, and here he hath framed a letter to a sequent
    of the stranger Queenes: which accidentally, or by the way
    1305of progression, hath miscarried. Trip and goe my sweete,
    deliuer this Paper into the royall hand of the King, it may
    concerne much: stay not thy complement, I forgine thy
    dewtie, adue.
    Mayd. Good Costard go with me: sir God saue your life.
    Cost. Haue with thee my girle. Exit.
    Holo. Sir you haue done this in the feare of God verie reli-
    giously: and as a certaine Father saith
    Ped. Sir tell not mee of the Father, I do feare colourable
    1315coloures. 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 pupill of
    mine, where if (before repast) it shall please you to gratifie
    1320the table with a Grace, I will on my priuiledge I haue with
    the parentes of the foresaid childe or pupill, vndertake your
    bien venuto, where I will proue those Verses to be very vn-
    learned, neither sauouring of Poetrie, wit, nor inuention.
    I beseech your societie.
    Nath. And thanke you to: for societie (saith the text)
    is the happines of life.
    Peda. And certes the text most infallibly concludes it.