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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    Not Peer Reviewed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:

    Ros. I would you knew.
    1920And if my face were but as faire as yours,
    My Fauour were as great, be witnesse this.
    Nay I haue Vearses too, I thanke Berowne,
    The numbers true, and were the numbring too,
    I were the fayrest Goddesse on the ground.
    1925I am comparde to twentie thousand fairs.
    O he hath drawen my picture in his letter.
    Quee. Any thing like?
    Ros. Much in the letters, nothing in the praise.
    Quee. Beautious as Incke: a good conclusion.
    1930Kath. Faire as a text B in a Coppie booke.
    Ros. Ware pensalls, How? Let me not die your debtor,
    My red Dominicall, my golden letter,
    O that your face were not so full of Oes.
    Quee. A Poxe of that iest, and I beshrow all Shrowes.
    1935But Katherine what was sent to you
    From faire Dumaine?
    Kath. Madame, this Gloue.
    Quee. Did he not send you twaine?
    Kath. Yes Madame: and moreouer,
    1940Some thousand Verses of a faithfull Louer.
    A hudge translation of hipocrisie,
    Vildly compyled, profound simplicitie.
    Marg. This, and these Pearle, to me sent Longauile.
    The Letter is too long by halfe a mile.
    1945Quee. I thinke no lesse: Dost thou not wish in hart
    The Chaine were longer, and the Letter short.
    Marg. I, or I would these handes might neuer part.
    Quee. We are wise girles to mocke our Louers so.
    Ros. They are worse fooles to purchase mocking so.
    1950That same Berowne ile torture ere I go.
    O that I knew he were but in by th'weeke,
    How I would make him fawne, and begge, and seeke,
    And wayte the season, and obserue the times,
    And spend his prodigall wittes in booteles rimes.
    1955And shape his seruice wholly to my deuice,
    And make him proude to make me proude that iestes,