Internet Shakespeare Editions

Author: William Shakespeare
Editor: Suzanne Westfall
Not Peer Reviewed

A Midsummer Night's Dream (Quarto 1, 1600)

A Midsommer nightes dreame.
The Throstle, with his note so true,
945The Wren, with little quill.
Tytania. What Angell wakes me from my flowry bed?
Bot. The Fynch, the Sparrowe, and the Larke,
The plainsong Cuckow gray:
Whose note, full many a man doth marke,
950And dares not answere, nay.
For indeede, who would set his wit to so foolish a birde?
Who would giue a bird the ly, though hee cry Cuckow,
neuer so?
Tita. I pray thee, gentle mortall, sing againe.
955Myne eare is much enamoured of thy note:
So is mine eye enthralled to thy shape,
And thy faire vertues force (perforce) doth mooue mee,
On the first viewe to say, to sweare, I loue thee.
Bott. Mee thinks mistresse, you should haue little reason
960for that. And yet, to say the truth, reason and loue keepe
little company together, now a daies. The more the pitty,
that some honest neighbours will not make them friends.
Nay I can gleeke, vpon occasion.
965Tyta. Thou art as wise, as thou art beautifull.
Bott. Not so neither: but if I had wit enough to get out
of this wood, I haue enough to serue mine owe turne.
Tyta. Out of this wood, doe not desire to goe:
970Thou shalt remaine here, whether thou wilt or no.
I am a spirit, of no common rate:
The Sommer, still, doth tend vpon my state,
And I doe loue thee: therefore goe with mee.
Ile giue thee Fairies to attend on thee:
975And they shall fetch thee Iewels, from the deepe,
And sing, while thou, on pressed flowers, dost sleepe:
And I will purge thy mortall grossenesse so,
That thou shalt, like an ayery spirit, goe.
Pease- blossome, Cobweb, Moth, and Mustard- seede?
980Enter foure Fairyes.