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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    Not Peer Reviewed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)

    Enter the Ladyes.
    Quee. Sweete hartes we shalbe rich ere we depart,
    Yf Fayrings come thus plentifully in.
    1890A Ladie walde about with Diamondes: Looke you, what I
    haue from the louing King.
    Rosa. Madame, came nothing els along with that?
    Quee. Nothing but this: yes as much loue in Rime,
    As would be crambd vp in a sheete of paper
    1895Writ a both sides the leafe, margent and all,
    That he was faine to seale on Cupids name.
    Rosa. That was the way to make his god-head Wax:
    For he hath been fiue thousand yeere a Boy.
    Kath. I and a shrowde vnhappie gallowes too.
    1900Ros. Youle neare be friendes with him, a kild your sister.
    Kath. He made her melancholie, sad, and heauie,
    And so she died: had she bin Light like you, of such a mery
    nimble stiring spirit, she might a bin Grandam ere she died.
    And so may you: For a light hart liues long.
    1905Ros. Whats your darke meaning mouce, of this light word?
    Kath. A light condition in a beautie darke.
    Ros. We neede more light to finde your meaning out.
    Kath. Yole marre the light by taking it in snuffe:
    1910Therefore Ile darkly ende the argument.
    Ros. Looke what you do, you do it still i'th darke.
    Kath. So do not you, for you are a light Wench.
    Ros. In deede I waigh not you, and therefore light.
    Kath. You waigh me not, O thats you care not for me.
    1915Ros. Great reason: for past care, is still past cure.
    Quee. Well bandied both, a set of Wit well played.
    But Rasaline, you haue a Fauour too?
    Who sent it? and what is it?
    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,
    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:
    1995For quoth the King, an Angell shalt thou see:
    Yet feare not thou but speake audaciously.
    The Boy replyde, An Angell is not euill:
    I should haue feard her had shee been a deuill.
    With that all laught, and clapt him on the shoulder,
    2000Making the bolde wagg by their prayses bolder.
    One rubbd his elbow thus, and fleerd, and swore,
    A better speach was neuer spoke before.
    Another with his fynger and his thume,
    Cried via we will doo't come what wil come.
    2005The thirde he caperd and cryed, All goes well.
    The fourth turnd on the tooe, and downe he fell:
    With that they all did tumble on the ground,
    With such a zelous laughter so profund,
    That in this spleene rediculous appeares,
    2010To checke their follie pashions solembe teares.
    Quee. But what, but what, come they to visite vs?
    Boy. They do, they do; and are appariled thus,
    Like Muscouites, or Russians, as I gesse.
    Their purpose is to parlee, to court, and daunce,
    2015And euery one his Loue-feat will aduance,
    Vnto his seuerall Mistres: which they'le know
    By Fauours seuerall, which they did bestow.
    Quee. And will they so? the Gallants shalbe taskt:
    For Ladies; we will euery one be maskt,
    2020And not a man of them shall haue the grace
    Despight of sute, to see a Ladies face.
    Holde Rosaline, this Fauour thou shalt weare,
    And then the King will court thee for his Deare:
    Holde take thou this my sweete, and giue mee thine,
    2025So shall Berowne take me for Rosaline.
    And change you Fauours two, so shall your Loues
    Woo contrarie, deceyued by these remoues.
    Rosa. Come on then, weare the Fauours most in sight.
    Kath. But in this changing, What is your intent?
    2030Quee. The effect of my intent is to crosse theirs:
    They do it but in mockerie merement,
    And mocke for mocke is onely my intent,
    Their seuerall counsailes they vnboosome shall,
    To Loues mistooke, and so be mockt withall.
    2035Vpon the next occasion that we meete,
    With Visages displayde to talke and greete.
    Ros. But shall we dance, if they desire vs toot?
    Quee. No, to the death we will not moue a foot,
    Nor to their pend speach render we no grace:
    2040But while tis spoke each turne away his face.
    Boy. Why that contempt will kill the speakers hart,
    And quite diuorce his memorie from his part.
    Quee. Therefore I do it, and I make no doubt,
    The rest will ere come in, if he be out.
    2045Theres no such sport, as sport by sport orethrowne:
    To make theirs ours, and ours none but our owne.
    So shall we stay mocking entended game,
    And they wel mockt depart away with shame. Sound Trom.
    Boy. The Trompet soundes, be maskt, the maskers come.
    Enter Black-moores with musicke, the Boy with a
    speach, and the rest of the Lordes disguysed.
    All haile, the richest Beauties on the earth.
    Berow. Beauties no richer then rich Taffata.
    A holy parcell of the fayrest dames that euer turnd their
    backes to mortall viewes.
    The Ladyes turne their backes to him.
    Berow, Their eyes villaine, their eyes.
    That euen turnde their eyes to mortall viewes.
    Boy. True, out in deede.
    Out of your fauours heauenly spirites vouchsafe
    Not to beholde.
    Berow. Once to beholde, rogue.
    Once to beholde with your Sunne beamed eyes,
    With your Sunne beamed eyes.
    Boyet. They will not answere to that Epythat.
    You were best call it Daughter beamed eyes.
    Pag. They do not marke me, and that bringes me out.
    2070Ber. Is this your perfectnes? begon you rogue.
    Rosal. What would these stranges?
    Know their mindes Boyet.
    If they do speake our language, tis our will
    That some plaine man recount their purposes.
    2075Know what they would?
    Boyet. What would you with the Princes?
    Berow. Nothing but peace, and gentle visitation.
    Rosa. What would they, say they?
    Boy. Nothing but peace, and gentle visitation.
    2080Rosa. Why that they haue, and bid them so be gon.
    Boy. She saies you haue it, and you may be gon.
    King. Say to her we haue measurd many miles,
    To treade a Measure with her on this grasse.
    Boy. They say that they haue measurd many a mile,
    2085To tread a Measure with you on this grasse.
    Rosa. It is not so. Aske them how manie inches
    Is in one mile? If they haue measured manie,
    The measure then of one is easlie tolde.
    Boy. If to come hither, you haue measurde miles,
    2090And manie miles: the Princesse bids you tell,
    How manie inches doth fill vp one mile?
    Berow. Tell her we measure them by weerie steps.
    Boy. She heares her selfe.
    Rosa. How manie weerie steps,
    2095Of manie weerie miles you haue ore gone,
    Are numbred in the trauaile of one Mile?
    Bero. We number nothing that we spend for you,
    Our duetie is so rich, so infinite,
    That we may do it still without accompt.
    2100Vouchsafe to shew the sunshine of your face,
    That we (like sauages) may worship it.
    Rosa. My face is but a Moone, and clouded too.
    King. Blessed are cloudes, to do as such cloudes do.
    Vouchsafe bright Moone, and these thy Starrs to shine,
    2105(Those cloudes remooued) vpon our waterie eyne.
    Rosa. O vaine peticioner, begg a greater matter,
    Thou now requests but Mooneshine in the water.
    King. Then in our measure, do but vouchsafe one change,
    Thou bidst me begge, this begging is not strange.
    2110Rosa. Play Musique then: nay you must do it soone.
    Not yet no daunce: thus change I like the Moone.
    Kin. Wil you not daunce? How come you thus estranged?
    Ro. You tooke the moone at ful, but now shee's changed?
    King. Yet still she is the Moone, and I the Man.
    Rosa. The musique playes, vouchsafe some motion to it,
    Our eares vouchsafe it.
    King. But your legges should do it.
    2120Rosa. Since you are strangers, and come here by chance,
    Weele not be nice, take handes, we will not daunce.
    King. Why take we handes then?
    Rosa, Onely to part friendes.
    Curtsie sweete hartes, and so the Measure endes.
    2125King. More measure of this measue be not nice.
    Rosa. We can affoord no more at such a price.
    King. Prise you your selues: What buyes your company?
    Rosa. Your absence onely.
    King. That can neuer be.
    2130Rosa. Then cennot we be bought: and so adue,
    Twice to your Visore, and halfe once to you.
    King. If you denie to daunce, lets holde more chat.
    Rosa. In priuat then.
    King. I am best pleasd with that.
    2135Berow. White handed Mistres, one sweet word with thee.
    Quee. Honie, and Milke, and Suger: there is three.
    Ber. Nay then two treyes, an if you grow so nice,
    Methegline, Wort, and Malmsey; well runne dice:
    There's halfe a dosen sweetes.
    2140Quee. Seuenth sweete adue, since you can cogg,
    Ile play no more with you.
    Ber. One word in secret.
    Quee. Let it not be sweete.
    Bero. Thou greeuest my gall.
    2145Quee. Gall, bitter,
    Bero. Therefore meete.
    Duman. Will you vouchsafe with me to change a word?
    Maria. Name it.
    Duma. Faire Ladie.
    2150Mar. Say you so? Faire Lord, take that for your faire Lady
    Duma. Please it you, as much in priuat, & ile bid adieu.
    Maria. What, was your vizard made without a tongue?
    2155Long. I know the reason (Lady) why you aske.
    Mari. O for your reason, quickly sir, I long?
    Long. You haue a double tongue within your Maske,
    And would afforde my speachles vizard halfe.
    Mar. Veale quoth the Dutch-man: is not veale a Calfe?
    Long. A Calfe faire Ladie.
    Mar. No, a faire Lorde Calfe.
    Long. Let's part the word?
    Mar. No, Ile not be your halfe:
    2165Take all and weane it, it may proue an Oxe.
    Lon. Loke how you butt your selfe in these sharpe mocks,
    Will you giue hornes chast Lady? do not so.
    Mar. Then die a Calfe, before your hornes do grow.
    2170Long. One word in priuate with you ere I die.
    Mar. Bleat softly then, the Butcher heares you crie.
    Boyet. The tongues of mocking Wenches are as keene
    As is the Rasors edge inuisible:
    Cutting a smaller haire then may be seene,
    2175Aboue the sence of sence so sensible,
    Seemeth their conference, their conceites haue winges,
    Fleeter then Arrowes, bullets wind thought swifter thinges.
    Rosa. Not one word more my Maides, break off, break off.
    2180Bero. By heauen, all drie beaten with pure scoffe.
    King. Farewel mad Wenches, you haue simple wits. Exe.
    Quee. Twentie adieus my frozen Muskouits.
    Are these the breede of Wits so wondered at?
    2185Boye. Tapers they are with your sweete breaths puft out.
    Rosa. Wel-liking Wits they haue grosse grosse, fat fat.
    Quee. O pouertie in wit, Kingly poore flout.
    Will they not (thinke you) hange them selues to nyght?
    2190Or euer but in vizards shew their faces.
    This pert Berowne was out of countnance quite.
    Rosa. They were all in lamentable cases,
    The King was weeping ripe for a good word.
    Quee. Berowne did sweare him selfe out of all suite.
    2195Mar. Dumaine was at my seruice, and his sword,
    No poynt (quoth I) my seruant, straight was mute.
    Kath. Lord Longauill said I came ore his hart:
    And trow you what he calde me?
    Quee. Qualme perhapt.
    2200Kath. Yes in good faith.
    Quee. Goe sicknes as thou art.
    Ros. Well, better wits haue worne plaine statute Caps.
    But will you heare; the King is my Loue sworne.
    Quee. And quicke Berowne hath plighted Fayth to me.
    2205Kath. And Longauill was for my seruice borne.
    Mar. Dumaine is mine as sure as barke on tree.
    Boyet. Madame, and prettie mistresses giue eare.
    Immediatly they will againe be heere,
    In their owne shapes: for it can neuer be,
    2210They will digest this harsh indignitie.
    Quee. Will they returne?
    Boy. They will they will, God knowes,
    And leape for ioy, though they are lame with blowes:
    Therefore change Fauours, and when they repaire,
    2215Blow like sweete Roses, in this sommer aire.
    Quee. How blow? how blow? Speake to be vnderstood.
    Boy. Faire Ladies maskt, are Roses in their bud:
    Dismaskt, their dammaske sweete commixture showne,
    2220Are Angels varling cloudes, or Roses blowne.
    Quee. Auaunt perplexitie, What shall we do,
    If they returne in their owne shapes to woe?
    Rosa. Good Madame, if by me youle be aduisde,
    Lets mocke them still as well knowne as disguysde:
    2225Let vs complaine to them what fooles were heare,
    Disguysd like Muscouities in shapeles geare:
    And wonder what they were, and to what ende
    Their shallow showes, and Prologue vildly pende.
    And their rough carriage so rediculous,
    2230Should be presented at our Tent to vs.
    Boyet. Ladies, withdraw: the gallants are at hand,
    Quee. Whip to our Tents as Roes runs ore land. Exeunt.
    Enter the King and the rest.
    2235King. Faire sir, God saue you: Wher's the Princesse?
    Boyet. Gone to her Tent. Please it your Maiestie com-
    maunde me any seruice to her thither,
    King. That she vouchsafe me audience for one word.
    Boy. I will, and so will she, I know my Lord. Exit.
    2240Berow. This fellow peckes vp Wit as Pidgions Pease,
    And vtters it againe when God dooth please.
    He is Witts Pedler, and retales his wares:
    At Wakes and Wassels, meetings, markets, Faires.
    And we that sell by grosse, the Lord doth know,
    2245Haue not the grace to grace it with such show.
    This Gallant pins the Wenches on his sleeue.
    Had he bin Adam he had tempted Eue.
    A can carue to, and lispe: Why this is hee
    That kist his hand, a way in courtisie.
    2250This is the Ape of Forme, Mounsier the nice,
    That when he playes at Tables chides the Dice
    In honorable tearmes; nay he can sing
    A meane most meanely, and in hushering.
    Mende him who can, the Ladies call him sweete.
    2255The staires as he treades on them kisse his feete.
    This is the floure that smyles on euery one.
    To shew his teeth as white as Whales bone.
    And consciences that will not die in debt,
    Pay him the due of honie-tonged Boyet.
    2260King. A blister on his sweete tongue with my hart,
    That put Armathoes Page out of his part.
    Enter the Ladies.
    Bero. See where it comes. Behauiour what wert thou?
    Till this mad man shewed thee, and what art thou now?
    2265King. All haile sweete Madame, and faire time of day.
    Quee. Faire in all Haile is foule, as I conceaue.
    King. Consture my spaches better, if you may.
    Quee. Then wish me better, I will giue you leaue.
    King. We came to visite you, and purpose now,
    2270To leade you to our Court, vouchsafe it then.
    Quee. This Feelde shall holde me, and so hold your vow:
    Nor God nor I delights in periurd men.
    King. Rebuke me not for that which you prouoke:
    The vertue of your eie must breake my oth.
    2275Que. You nickname vertue, vice you should haue spoke:
    For vertues office neuer breakes mens troth.
    Now by my maiden honour yet as pure,
    As the vnsallied Lilly I protest,
    A worlde of tormentes though I should endure,
    2280I would not yeelde to be your houses guest:
    So much I hate a breaking cause to be
    Of heauenly Othes vowed with integritie.
    King. O you haue liu'd in desolation heere,
    Vnseene, vnuisited, much to our shame.
    2285Quee. Not so my Lord, it is not so I sweare,
    We haue had pastimes here and pleasant game,
    A messe of Russians left vs but of late.
    King. How Madame? Russians?
    Quee. I in trueth My Lord.
    2290Trim gallants, full of Courtship and of state.
    Rosa. Madame speake true: It is not so my Lord:
    My Ladie (to the maner of the dayes)
    In curtesie giues vndeseruing praise.
    We foure in deede confronted were with foure,
    2295In Russian habite: heere they stayed an houre,
    And talkt apace: and in that houre (my Lord)
    They did not blesse vs with one happie word.
    I dare not call them fooles; but this I thinke,
    When they are thirstie, fooles would faine haue drinke.
    2300Bero. This iest is drie to me, gentle sweete,
    Your wits makes wise thinges foolish when we greete
    With eies best seeing, heauens fierie eie:
    By light we loose light, your capacitie
    Is of that nature, that to your hudge stoore,
    2305Wise thinges seeme foolish, and rich thinges but poore.
    Rosa. This proues you wise and rich: for in my eie.
    Bero. I am a foole, and full of pouertie.
    Rosa. But that you take what doth to you belong,
    It were a fault to snatch wordes from my tongue.
    2310Ber. O, I am yours and all that I possesse.
    Rosa. All the foole mine.
    Ber. I cannot giue you lesse.
    Ros. Which of the Vizards was it that you wore?
    Ber. Where, when, what Vizard? why demaund you this?
    Rosa. There, then, that Vizard, that superfluous case,
    That hid the worse, and shewed the better face.
    King. We were descried, theyle mock vs now dounright.
    2320Duman. Let vs confesse and turne it to a iest.
    Quee. Amazde my Lord? Why lookes your highnes sad?
    Rosa. Helpe holde his browes, heele sound: why looke
    you pale?
    2325Sea sicke I thinke comming from Muscouie.
    Bero. Thus pooure the Starres downe plagues for periurie.
    Can anie face of brasse hold longer out?
    Heere stand I, Ladie dart thy skill at me,
    Bruse me with scorne, confound me with a flout.
    2330Thrust thy sharpe wit quite through my ignorance,
    Cut me to peeces with thy keene conceit.
    And I will wish thee neuer more to daunce,
    Nor neuer more in Russian habite waite.
    O neuer will I trust to speaches pend,
    2335Nor to the motion of a Schoole-boyes tongue:
    Nor neuer come in vizard to my friend,
    Nor woo in rime like a blind harpers songue.
    Taffata phrases, silken tearmes precise,
    Three pilde Hiberboles, spruce affection:
    2340Figures pedanticall, these sommer flies,
    Haue blowne me full of maggot ostentation.
    I do forsweare them, and I here protest,
    By this white Gloue (how white the hand God knowes)
    Hencefoorth my wooing minde shalbe exprest
    2345In russet yeas, and honest kersie noes.
    And to begin Wench, so God helpe me law,
    My loue to thee is sound, sance cracke or flaw.
    Rosa. Sans, sans, I pray you.
    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,
    King. What meane you Madame: by my life my troth,
    2390I neuer swore this Lady such an oth.
    Rosal. By heauen you did; and to confirme it plaine,
    You gaue me this: but take it sir againe.
    King. My faith and this, the Princesse I did giue,
    I knew her by this Iewell on her sleeue.
    2395Quee. Pardon me sir, this Iewell did she weare,
    And Lord Berowne (I thanke him) is my deare.
    What? will you haue me, or your Pearle againe?
    Berow. Neither of either: I remit both twaine.
    I see the tricke ant: here was a consent,
    2400Knowing aforehand of our meriment,
    To dash it lik a Christmas Comedie:
    Some carry tale, some please-man, some sleight saine:
    Some mumble newes, some trencher Knight, some Dick
    That smyles, his cheeke in yeeres, and knowes the trick
    2405To make my Lady laugh, when shees disposd:
    Tolde our intentes before: which once disclosd,
    The Ladies did change Fauours; and then wee
    Folowing the signes, wood but the signe of shee,
    Now to our periurie, to add more terror,
    2410We are againe forsworne in will and error.
    Much vpon this tis: and might not you
    Forestall our sport, to make vs thus vntrue?
    Do not you know my Ladies foote by'th squier?
    And laugh vpon the apple of her eie?
    2415And stand betweene her backe sir and the fier,
    Holding a trencher, iesting merrilie?
    You put our Page out: goe, you are aloude.
    Die when you will, a Smocke shalbe your shroude.
    You leere vpon me, do you: ther's an eie
    2420Woundes like a leaden sword.
    Boyet. Full merely hath this braue nuage, this carreere
    bin run.
    Bero. Loe, he is tilting straight. Peace, I haue don.
    Enter Clowne.
    2425Ber. Welcome pure wit, thou partst a faire fray.
    Clow. O Lord sir, they would know,
    Whether the three Worthis shall come in or no?
    Ber. What, are there but three?
    Clow. No sir, but it is vara fine,
    2430For euerie one pursents three.
    Bero. And three times thrice is nine.
    Clow. Not so sir, vnder correction sir, I hope it is not so.
    You cannot beg vs sir, I can assure you sir, we know what
    we know: I hope sir three times thrice sir.
    2435Bero. Is not nine.
    Clow. Vnder correction sir we know where-vntill it doth
    Bero. By Ioue, I all wayes tooke three threes for nine.
    Clow. O Lord sir, it were pittie you should get your liuing
    2440by reckning sir.
    Bero. How much is it?
    Clow. O Lord sir, the parties themselues, the actors sir
    will shew wher-vntill it doth amount: for mine owne part, I
    am (as thy say, but to parfect one man in one poore man)
    2445Pompion the great sir.
    Bero. Art thou one of the Worthies?
    Clow. It pleased them to thinke me worthie of Pompey
    the great: for mine owne part I know not the degree of the
    Worthy, but I am to stand for him.
    2450Bero. Goe bid them prepare.
    Clow. We wil turne it finely off sir, we wil take some care. ( Exit.
    King. Berowne, they will shame vs: let them not approch.
    2455Bero. We are shame proofe my Lord: & tis some policie
    To haue one show worse then the Kings and his company.
    King. I say they shall not come.
    Quee. Nay my good Lord let me ore'rule you now.
    2460That sport best pleases, that doth best know how:
    Where zeale striues to content, and the contentes
    Dies in the zeale of that which it presentes:
    Their forme confounded, makes most forme in myrth,
    When great thinges labouring perish in their byrth.
    2465Bero. A right description of our sport my Lord.
    Enter Bragart.
    Brag. Annoynted, I implore so much expence of thy royal
    sweete breath, as will vtter a brace of wordes.
    Quee. Doth this man serue God?
    2470Bero. Why aske you?
    Quee. A speakes not like a man of God his making.
    Brag. That is al one my faire sweete honie monarch,
    For I protest, the Schoolemaister is exceeding fantasticall,
    Too too vaine, too too vaine: but we will put it (as they say)
    2475to Fortuna delaguar, I wish you the peace of mind most royall
    cupplement. Exit.
    King. Heere is like to be a good presence of Worthies:
    He presents Hector of Troy, the Swaine Pompey the great, the
    parish Curate Alexander, Armadoes Page Hercules, the Pe-
    2480dant Iudas Machabeus: And if these foure Worthies in their
    first shew thriue, these foure will change habites, and present
    the other fiue.
    Bero. There is fiue in the first shew.
    King. You are deceiued, tis not so.
    2485Bero. The Pedant, the Bragart, the Hedge-Priest, the
    Foole, and the Boy,
    Abate throw at Nouum, and the whole world againe,
    Cannot picke out fiue such, take each one in his vaine.
    Kin. The Ship is vnder sayle, and heere she coms amaine.
    2490Enter Pompey.
    I Pompey am.
    Bero. You lie, you are not he.
    I Pompey am,
    Boyet. With Libbards head on knee.
    2495Ber. Well said old mocker, I must needes be friendes with (thee.
    I Pompey am, Pompey surnamde the bigge.
    Duma. The great.
    Clow. It is great sir,
    Pompey surnamd the great.
    2500That oft in fielde with Targ and Shield did make my foe to sweat,
    And trauailing along this coast I heere am come by chaunce,
    And lay my Armes before the Leggs of this sweete Lasse of France.
    2505If your Ladishyp would say thankes Pompey, I had done.
    Lady. Great thankes great Pompey.
    Clo. Tis not so much worth: but I hope I was perfect. I
    made a litle fault in great.
    Bero. My hat to a halfe-pennie, Pompey prooues the best
    Enter Curate for Alexander.
    When in the world I liud, I was the worldes commander:
    By East, West, North, and South, I spred my conquering might:
    2515My Scutchion plaine declares that I am Alisander.
    Boyet. Your Nose saies no, you are not: for it stands too (right.
    Be. Your nose smels no in his most tender smelling knight.
    2520Qu. The conqueror is dismaid: proceed good Alexander.
    When in the worlde I liued, I was the worldes commander.
    Boy. Most true, tis right: you were so Alisander.
    2525Bero. Pompey the great.
    Clow. Your seruant and Costard.
    Bero. Take away the Conqueronr, take away Alisander.
    Clow. O sir, you haue ouerthrowne Alisander the Conque-
    rour: you will be scrapt out of the painted cloth for this.
    2530Your Lion that holdes his Polax sitting on a close stoole,
    will be geuen to Aiax. He wilbe the ninth Worthie: a Con-
    querour, and afeard to speake? Run away for shame Ali-
    sander. There ant shall please you a foolish mylde man, an
    honest man; looke you, and soone dasht. He is a marueylous
    2535good neighbour fayth, and a very good Bowler: but for
    Alisander, alas you see how tis a little oreparted, but there
    are Worthies a comming will speake their minde in some
    other sort. Exit Curat.
    Quee. Stand aside good Pompey.
    2540Enter Pedant for Iudas, and the Boy for Hercules.
    Great Hercules is presented by this Impe,
    Whose Clubb kilde Cerberus that three headed Canus,
    And when he was a babe, a childe, a shrimpe,
    Thus did he strangle Serpents in his Manus,
    2545Quoniam, he seemeth in minoritie,
    Ergo, I come with this Appologie
    Keepe some state in thy exit, and vanish. Exit Boy.
    Iudas I am.
    Dum. A Iudas.
    2550Pedan. Not Iscariot sir.
    Iudas I am, ecliped Machabeus.
    Dum. Iudas Machabeus clipt, is plaine Iudas.
    Bero. A kissing traytour, How art thou proud Iudas?
    Peda. Iudas I am.
    2555Duma. The more shame for you Iudas.
    Peda. What meane you sir?
    Boyet. To make Iudas hang him selfe.
    Pedan. Begin sir, you are my elder.
    Bero. Well folowed, Iudas was hanged on an Flder.
    2560Pedan. I will not be put out of countenance.
    Bero. Because thou hast no face.
    Pedan. What is this?
    Boyet. A Cytterne head.
    Duma. The head of a Bodkin.
    2565Bero. A deaths face in a Ring.
    Long. The face of an olde Roman coyne, scarce seene.
    Boyet. The pummel of Caesars Fauchion.
    Duma. The carud-bone face on a Flaske.
    Bero. Saint Georges halfe cheeke in a Brooch.
    2570Duma. I and in a Brooch of Lead.
    Bero. I and worne in the cappe of a Tooth-drawer:
    And now forward, for we haue put thee in countenance.
    Peda. You haue put me out of countenance.
    Bero. False, we haue giuen thee faces.
    2575Peda. But you haue outfaste them all.
    Bero. And thou weart a Lyon, we would do so.
    Boyet. Therefore as he is, an Asse, let him go:
    And so adue sweete Iude. Nay, Why dost thou stay?
    Duma. For the latter ende of his name.
    2580Bero. For the Asse to the Iude: giue it him. Judas away.
    Peden. This is not generous, not gentle, not humble.
    Boyet. A light for Mounsier Judas, it growes darke, he
    may stumble.
    2585Quee. Alas poore Machabeus, how hath he bin bayted.
    Eeter Braggart.
    Ber. Hide thy head Achilles, here comes Hector in Armes.
    2590Duma. Though my mockes come home by me, I will
    now be merrie.
    King. Hector was but a Troyan in respect of this.
    Boyet. But is this Hector?
    King. I thinke Hector was not so cleane timberd.
    2595Long. His Legge is too bigge for Hectors.
    Duman. More Calfe certaine.
    Boye. No, he is best indued in the small.
    Bero. This cannot be Hector.
    Duma. Hee's a God or a Painter: for he makes faces.
    The Armipotent Mars, of Launces the almightie,
    gaue Hector a gift
    Duma. A gift Nutmegg.
    Bero. A Lemmon.
    Long. Stucke with Cloues.
    2605Dum. No clouen.
    Peace. The Armipotent Mars, of Launces the almighty,
    Gaue Hector a gift, the heir of Illion,
    A man so breathed, that certaine he would fight; yea,
    From morne till night out of his Pauilion.
    2610I am that Flower.
    Dum. That Mint.
    Long. That Cullambine.
    Brag. Sweete Lord Longauill raine thy tongue.
    Long. I must rather giue it the raine: for it runnes against
    Dum. I and Hector's a Greyhound.
    Brag. The sweete War-man is dead and rotten,
    Sweete chucks beat not the bones of the buried:
    2618.1When he breathed he was a man:
    But I will forward with my deuice; sweete royaltie bestow
    2620on me the sence of hearing.
    Berowne steps foorth.
    Quee. Speake braue Hector, we are much delighted.
    Brag. I do adore thy sweete Graces Slipper.
    Boyet. Loues her by the foote.
    2625Dum. He may not by the yarde.
    This Hector far surmounted Hanniball.
    The partie is gone
    Clow. Fellow Hector, she is gone; she is two months on
    her way.
    2630Brag. What meanest thou?
    Clow. Faith vnlesse you play the honest Troyan, the poore
    wench is cast away: shee's quicke, the childe bragges in her
    bellie already: tis yours.
    Brag. Dost thou infamonize me among potentates:
    2635Thou shalt die.
    Clow. Then shall Hector be whipt for Iaquenetta that is
    quicke by him, and hangd for Pompey that is dead by him.
    Duma. Most rare Pompey.
    2640Boyet. Renowned Pompey.
    Bero. Greater then great, great, great, great Pompey: Pom-
    pey the hudge.
    Dum. Hector trembles.
    Bero. Pompey is mooued more Ates more Atees stir them
    2645or stir them on.
    Duma. Hector will challenge him.
    Bero. I, if a'haue no more mans blood in his belly then wil
    suppe a Flea.
    Brag. By the North Pole I do challenge thee.
    2650Clow. I will not fight with a Pole like a Northren man;
    Ile slash, Ile do it by the Sword: I bepray you let me bor-
    row my Armes againe.
    Duma. Roome for the incensed Worthies.
    Clow. Ile do it in my shyrt.
    2655Duma. Most resolute Pompey.
    Page. Maister, let me take you a button hole lower. Do
    you not see, Pompey is vncasing for the Combat: What
    meane you? you will loose your reputation.
    Brag. Gentlemen and Souldiers, pardon me, I will not
    2660combat in my shyrt.
    Duma. You may not deny it, Pompey hath made the chal-(lenge.
    Brag. Sweete bloodes, I both may and will.
    Bero. What reason haue you fort.
    2665Brag. The naked trueth of it is, I hane no Shirt.
    I goe Woolward for pennance.
    Boy. True, and it was inioyned him in Rome for want of
    Linnen: since when, Ile be sworne he wore none, but a dish-
    cloute of Jaquenettaes, and that a weares next his hart for a
    Enter a Messenger Mounsier Marcade.
    Marcad. God saue you Madame.
    Quee. Welcome Marcade, but that thou interrnpptest our
    2675Marcad. I am sorrie Madame for the newes I bring
    is heauie in my tongue. The King your father
    Quee. Dead for my life.
    Marcad. Euen so: my tale is tolde.
    B er. Worthies away, the Scaene begins to cloude.
    2680Brag. For mine owne part I breath free breath: I haue
    seene the day of wrong through the litle hole of discretion,
    and I will right my selfe like a Souldier. Exeunt Worthys
    King. How fares your Maiestie?
    2685Quee. Boyet prepare, I will away to nyght.
    King. Madame Not so, I do beseech you stay.
    Quee. Prepare I say: I thanke you gracious Lords
    For all your faire endeuours and intreat:
    Out of a new sad-soule, that you vouchsafe,
    2690In your rich wisedome to excuse, or hide,
    The liberall opposition of our spirites,
    If ouerboldly we haue borne our selues,
    In the conuerse of breath (your gentlenes
    Was guyltie of it.) Farewell worthy Lord:
    2695A heauie hart beares not a humble tongue.
    Excuse me so comming too short of thankes,
    For my great sute, so easely obtainde.
    King. The extreame partes of time extreamly formes,
    All causes to the purpose of his speede:
    2700And often at his very loose decides
    That, which long processe could not arbitrate.
    And though the mourning brow of progenie
    Forbid the smyling courtecie of Loue,
    The holy suite which faine it would conuince,
    2705Yet since Loues argument was first on foote,
    Let not the cloude of Sorrow iustle it
    From what it purposd, since to wayle friendes lost,
    Is not by much so holdsome profitable,
    As to reioyce at friendes but newly found.
    2710Quee. I vnderstand you not, my griefes are double.
    Bero. Honest plaine words, best pearce the eare of griefe,
    And by these badges vnderstand the King,
    For your faire sakes, haue we neglected time.
    Plaide foule play with our othes: your beautie Ladies
    2715Hath much deformed vs, fashioning our humours
    Euen to the opposed ende of our ententes.
    And what in vs hath seemed rediculous:
    As Loue is full of vnbefitting straines,
    All wanton as a childe, skipping and vaine.
    2720Formd by the eye, and therefore like the eye.
    Full of straying shapes, of habites and of formes:
    Varying in subiectes as the eye doth roule,
    To euery varied obiect in his glaunce:
    Which partie coted presence of loose loue
    2725Put on by vs, if in your heauenly eyes,
    Haue misbecombd our othes and grauities.
    Those heauenly eyes that looke into these faultes,
    Suggested vs to make, therefore Ladies
    Our loue being yours, the errour that Loue makes
    2730Is likewise yours: we to our selues proue false,
    By being once falce, for euer to be true
    To those that make vs both faire Ladies you.
    And euen that falshood in it selfe a sinne,
    Thus purifies it selfe and turns to grace.
    2735Quee. We haue receiud your Letters, full of Loue:
    Your Fauours, embassadours of Loue.
    And in our mayden counsaile rated them,
    At courtshyp pleasant iest and courtecie,
    As bombast and as lyning to the time:
    2740But more deuout then this our respectes,
    Haue we not been, and therefore met your Loues,
    In their owne fashyon like a merriment.
    Dum. Our letters madame, shewed much more then iest.
    Long. So did our lookes.
    2745Rosa. We did not cote them so.
    King. Now at the latest minute of the houre,
    Graunt vs your loues.
    Quee. A time me thinkes too short,
    To make a world-without-end bargaine in:
    2750No no my Lord, your Grace is periurde much,
    Full of deare guiltines, and rherefore this,
    If for my Loue (as there is no such cause)
    You will do ought, this shall you do for me:
    Your oth I will not trust, but goe with speede
    2755To some forlorne and naked Hermytage,
    Remote from all the pleasurs of the world:
    There stay vntill the twelue Celestiall Signes
    Haue brought about the annuall reckoning.
    If this Austere insociable life,
    2760Change not your offer made in heate of blood.
    If frostes and fastes, hard lodging, and thin weedes,
    Nip not the gaudie blossomes of your Loue:
    But that it beare this tryall, and last Loue,
    Then at the expiration of the yeere,
    2765Come challenge me, challenge me by these desertes:
    And by this Virgin palme now kissing thine,
    I wilbe thine: and till that instance shutt
    My wofull selfe vp in a mourning house,
    Rayning the teares of lamentation,
    2770For theremembraunce of my Fathers death.
    If this thou do deny, let our handes part,
    Neither intiled in the others hart.
    King. If this, or more then this, I would denie,
    To flatter vp these powers of mine with rest,
    2775The sodaine hand of death close vp mine eye.
    Hence herrite then my hart, is in thy brest.
    Berow. And what to me my Loue? and what to me?
    Rosal. You must be purged to, your sinnes are rackt.
    You are attaint with faultes and periurie:
    2780Therefore if you my fauour meane to get,
    A tweluemonth shall you spende and neuer rest,
    But seeke the weery beddes of people sicke.
    Duma. But what to me my Loue? but what to me?
    Kath. A wife? a beard, faire health, and honestie,
    2785With three folde loue I wish you all these three.
    Duma. O shall I say, I thanke you gentle Wife?
    Kath. Not so my Lord, a tweluemonth and a day,
    Ile marke no wordes that smothfast wooers say,
    Come when the King doth to my Lady come:
    2790Then if I haue much loue, Ile giue you some.
    Duma. Ile serue thee true and faythfully till then.
    Kath. Yet sweare not, least ye be forsworne agen.
    Longauill. What saies Maria?
    Mari. At the tweluemonths ende,
    2795Ile change my blacke Gowne for a faithfull frend.
    Long. Ile stay with patience, but the time is long.
    Mari. The liker you, few taller are so young.
    Berow. Studdies my Ladie? Mistres looke on me,
    Beholde the window of my hart, mine eye:
    2800What humble suite attendes thy answere there,
    Impose some seruice on me for thy Loue.
    Rosa. Oft haue I heard of you my Lord Berowne,
    Before I saw you: and the worldes large tongue
    Proclaymes you for a man repleat with mockes,
    2805Full of comparisons and wounding floutes:
    Which you on all estetes will execute,
    That lie within the mercie of your wit
    To weede this wormewood from your fructfull braine,
    And therewithall to winne me, yf you please,
    2810Without the which I am not to be won:
    You shall this tweluemonth terme from day to day,
    Visite the speachlesse sicke, and still conuerse,
    With groning wretches: and your taske shall be,
    With all the fierce endeuour of your wit,
    2815To enforce the pained impotent to smile.
    Berow. To moue wilde laughter in the throate of death?
    It cannot be, it is impossible.
    Mirth cannot moue a soule in agonie.
    Rosal. Why thats the way to choake a gibing spirrit,
    2820Whose influence is begot of that loose grace,
    Which shallow laughing hearers giue to fooles,
    A iestes prosperitie lies in the eare,
    Of him that heares it, neuer in the tongue
    Of him that makes it: then if sickly eares
    2825Deaft with the clamours of their owne deare grones,
    Will heare your idle scornes; continue then,
    And I will haue you, and that fault withall.
    But if they will not, throw away that spirrit,
    And I shall finde you emptie of that fault,
    2830Right ioyfull of your reformation.
    Berow. A tweluemonth? well; befall what will befall,
    Ile iest a tweluemonth in an Hospitall.
    Queen. I sweete my Lord, and so I take my leaue.
    King. No Madame, we will bring you on your way.
    2835Berow. Our wooing doth not ende like an olde Play:
    Iacke hath not Gill: these Ladies courtesie
    Might well haue made our sport a Comedie.
    King. Come sir, it wants a tweluemonth an'a day,
    And then twill ende.
    2840Berow. That's too long for a Play.
    Enter Braggart.
    Brag. Sweete Maiestie vouchsafe me.
    Queen. Was not that Hector?
    Duma. The worthie Knight of Troy.
    2845Brag. I will kisse thy royall finger, and take leaue.
    I am a Votarie; I haue vowde to Iaquenetta
    To holde the Plough for her sweete loue three yeere.
    But most esteemed greatnes, will you heare the Dialogue
    that the two Learned men haue compiled, in prayse of the
    Owle and the Cuckow? it should haue followed in the
    2850ende of our shew.
    King. Call them foorth quickly, we will do so.
    Brag. Holla. Approch.
    Enter all.
    2855Brag. This side is Hiems, Winter.
    This Ver, the Spring: The one maynteined by the Owle,
    th'other by the Cuckow.
    B. Ver begin.
    The Song.
    2860When Dasies pied, and Violets blew,
    And Cuckow-budds of yellow hew:
    And Ladi-smockes all siluer white,
    Do paint the Meadowes with delight:
    The Cuckow then on euerie tree,
    2865Mocks married men; for thus singes hee,
    Cuckow, Cuckow: O word of feare,
    Vnpleasing to a married eare.
    When Shepheards pipe on Oten Strawes,
    2870And merrie Larkes are Ploughmens Clocks:
    When Turtles tread and Rookes and Dawes,
    And Maidens bleach their summer smockes:
    The Cuckow then on euerie tree,
    Mockes married men, for thus singes he,
    Cuckow, cuckow: O word of feare,
    Vnpleasing to a married eare.
    When Isacles hang by the wall,
    2880And Dicke the Sheepheard blowes his naile:
    And Thom beares Logges into the hall,
    And Milke coms frozen home in paile:
    When Blood is nipt, and wayes be full,
    Then nightly singes the staring Owle
    2885Tu-whit to-who.
    A merrie note,
    While greasie Ione doth keele the pot.
    When all aloude the winde doth blow,
    And coffing drownes the Parsons saw;
    2890And Birdes sit brooding in the Snow,
    And Marrians nose lookes red and raw:
    When roasted Crabbs hisse in the bowle,
    Then nightly singes the staring Owle,
    Tu-whit to-who.
    2895A merrie note,
    While greasie Ione doth keele the pot.
    The wordes of Mercurie, are harsh after the
    songes of Apollo.