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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    Not Peer Reviewed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)

    called Loues Labor's lost.

    So perttaunt like would I ore'sway his state,
    That he should be my foole, and I his fate.
    Quee. None are so surely caught, when they are catcht,
    1960As Wit turnde Foole, follie in Wisedome hatcht:
    Hath Wisedomes warrant, and the helpe of Schoole,
    And Wits owne grace to grace a learned Foole.
    Rosa. The blood of youth burnes not with such excesse,
    As grauities reuolt to wantons be.
    1965Mar. Follie in Fooles beares not so strong a note,
    As foolrie in the Wise, when Wit doth dote:
    Since all the power thereof it doth apply,
    To proue by Wit, worth in simplicitie.
    Enter Boyet.
    1970Quee. Heere comes Boyet, and myrth is in his face.
    Boyet. O I am stable with laughter, Wher's her Grace?
    Quee. Thy newes Boyet?
    Boy. Prepare Maddame, prepare.
    Arme Wenches arme, incounters mounted are,
    1975Against your Peace Loue doth approch, disguysd:
    Armed in argumentes, you'll be surprisd.
    Muster your Wits, stande in your owne defence,
    Or hide your heades like Cowardes, and flie hence.
    Quee. Saint Dennis to S. Cupid: What are they,
    1980That charge their breath against vs? Say scout say.
    Boy. Vnder the coole shade of a Siccamone,
    I thought to close mine eyes some halfe an houre:
    When lo to interrupt my purposed rest,
    Toward that shade I might beholde addrest,
    1985The King and his companions warely,
    I stole into a neighbour thicket by,
    And ouer hard, what you shall ouer heare:
    That by and by disguysd thy will be heere.
    Their Heralde is a prettie knauish Page:
    1990That well by hart hath cond his embassage
    Action and accent did they teach him there.
    Thus must thou speake, and thus thy body beare.
    And euer and anon they made a doubt,
    Presence maiesticall would put him out: