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Enter Oberon,
Obe. I wonder if Titania be awak'd;
Then, what it was that next came in her eye,
Which she must dote on in extremity.

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Enter Puck,
Here comes my messenger. How now, mad spirit?
What night-rule* now about this haunted grove!

Puck. My mistress with a monster is in love.
Near to her close and consecrated bower,
While she was in her dull and sleeping hour,
A crew of patchest, rude mechanicals,
That work for bread upon Athenian stalls,
Were met together to rehearse a play,
Intended for great Theseus' nuptial day.
The shallowest thick-skin of that barren sortt,
Who Pyramus presented, in their sport
Forsook his scene, and enter'd in a brake:
When I did him at this advantage take,
An ass's nowls I fixed on his head;
Anon, his Thisbe must be answered,
And forth my mimick || comes: when they him spy,
As wild geese that the creeping fowler eye,
Or russet-pated choughs, many in sort,
Rising and cawing at the gun's report
Sever themselves, and madly sweep the sky;
So, at his sight, away his fellows fly:
And, at our stamp, here o'er and o'er one falls;
He murder cries, and help from Athens calls,

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* Revelry.

+ Simple fellows. Stupid company.


|| Actor.


Their sense, thus weak, lost with their fears, thus

Made senseless things begin to do them

For briers and thorns at their apparel snatch;
Some, sleeves ; some, liats : from yielders all things

I led them on in this distracted fear,
And left sweet Pyramus translated there:
When in that moment (so it came to pass),
Titania wak'd, and straightway lov'd ad ass.

Obe. This falls out better than I could devise.
But hast thou yet latch'd* the Athenian's eyes
With the love-juice, as I did bid thee do?

Puck, I took him sleeping,--that is finish'd too,
And the Athenian woman by his side?
That, when he wak’d, of force she must be ey'd.

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Enter Demetrius and Hermia.

Obe. Stand close; this is the same Athenian.
Puck. This is the woman, but not this the man."

Dem. O why rebuke you him that loves you so?
Lay breath so bitter on your bitter foe.
· Her. Now I but chide, but I should use there

worse ;
For thou, I fear, hast given me cause to corse,
If thou hast slain Lysander in his sleep,
Being o'er shoes in blood, plunge in the deep,
And kill me too.
The sun was not so true unto the day,
As he to me: Would he have stol'n away
From sleeping Hermia? I'll believe as soon,
This whole earth may be bor'd; and that the moon
May through the center creep, and so displease
Her brother's noon-tide with the Antipodes.
It cannot be, but thou hast murder'd him ;
So should a murderer look; so dead, so grim.

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Of thy mis Some true Puck.

i A million

Obe. E And Hel

All fancy
With sight
By some
I'll charn


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". Dem. So should the murder'd look; and so

should I,
Pierc'd through the heart with your stern cruelty:
Yet you, the murderer, look as bright, as clear,
As yonder Venus in her glimmering sphere.

Her. What's this to my Lysander ? where is he?
Ah, good Demetrius, wilt thou give him me?
Dem. I had rather give his carcase to my hounds.
Her. Out, dog! out, cur! thou driv'st me past

the bounds
Of maiden's patience. Hast thou slain him then?
Henceforth be never number'd among men!
0! once tell true, tell true, even for my sake;
Durst thou have look'd upon him, being awake,
And hast thou kill'd him sleeping? O brave touch®;
Could not a worm, an adder, do so much?
An adder did it: for with a doubler tongue
Than thine, thou serpent, never adder stung.
Dem. You spend your passion on a mispris'dt

I am not guilty of Lysander's blood;
Nor is he dead, for aught that I can tell.

Her. I pray thee, tell me then that he is well.
Dem. And if I could, what should I get there.

Her. A privilege, never to see me more.
And from thy hated presence part I so:
See me vo more, whether he be dead or no. (Exit.

Dem. There is no following her in this fierce vein:
Here, therefore, for a while I will remain.
So sorrow's heaviness doth heavier grow
For debt that bankrupt sleep doth sorrow owe;
Which now, in some slight measure it will pay,
If for his tender here I make some stay.

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Obe. What hast thou done ? thou hast mistaken

quite, And laid the love-juice on some true-love's sight:

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Of thy misprision must perforce ensue
Some true love turn'd, and not a false turn'd true.
Puck. Then fate o'er-rules; that, one man hold.

ing troth,
A million fail, confounding oath on oath.

Obe. About the wood go swifter than the wind,
And Helena of Athens look thou find:
All fancy-sick* she is, and pale of cheert
With sighs of love, that cost the fresh blood dear:
By some illusion see thou bring her bere;
l'll charm his eyes, against she do appear.

Puck, I go, I go; look, how I go;
Swifter than arrow from the Tartar's bow. (Erit,

Obe. Flower of this purple die,
Hit with Cupid's archery,
Sink in apple of his eye!
When his love he doth espy,
Let her shine as gloriously
As the Venus of the sky.-
When thou wak'st, if she be by,
Beg of her for remedy.

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Re-enter Puck,

II. there

Puck, Captain of our fairy badd,
Helena is liere at hand;
And the youth, mistook by me,
Pleading for a lover's fee;
Shall we their fond pageant see?
Lord, what fools these mortals be!

Obe. Stand aside: the noise they make,
Will cause Demetrius to awake.

Puck. Then will two at once, woo one;
That must needs be sport alone;
And those things do best please me,
That befal preposterously.


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Enter Lysander and Helena.
Lys. Why should you think, that I should woo in

Scorn and derision never come in tears :
Look, when I vow, I weep; and vows so born,

In their nativity all truth appears.
How cau these things in me seem scorn to you,
Bearing the badge of faith, to prove them true?
Hel. You do advance your cunning more and

When truth kills truth, devilish-holy fray!
Thése vows are Hermia's; Will you give her o'er??

Weigh oath with oath, and you will nothing weigh;
Your vows, to her and me, put in two scales,
Will even weigh; and both as light as tales.

Lys. I had no judgement, when to her I swore.
Hel. Nor none, in my mind, now you give her

Lys. Demetrius loves her, and he loves not you.
Dem. [awaking.} O Helen, goddess, bymph, pero

fect, divine!
To what, my love, shall I compare
Crystal is muddy. 'o, how rice in show
Thy lips, those kissing cherries, tempting grow!
That pure congealed white, high Taurus' snow,
Fapu'd with the eastern wind, turns to a crow,
When thou hold'st up thy hand: 0 let me kiss
This princess of pure white, this seal of bliss!

Hel. O spite ! O bell! I see you all are bent
To set against me, for your merriment,
If you were civil, and knew courtesy,
You would not do me thus much injury.
Can you not hate me, as I know you do,
But you must join, in souls*, to mock me too?
If you were men, as men you are in show,
You would not use a gentle lady so;

My hea And no

thine eyne;



Dem Lest, to



The e Wher It pay Thou Mine But


• Heartily,

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