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Two households, both alike in dignity,

In fair Verona, where we lay our scene, From ancient grudge break to new mutiny,

Where civil blood makes civil hands unclean. From forth the fatal loins of these two foes

A pair of star-cross'd lovers take their life; Whose misadventur'd piteous overthrows

Do, with their death, bury their parents' strife. The fearful passage of their death-mark'd love,

And the continuance of their parents' rage, Which, but their childrens' end, nought could remove,

Is now the two hours' traffick of our stage; The which if you with patient ears attend, What here shall miss, our toil shall strive to mend.

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ESCALUS, Prince of Verona.
PARIS, a young Nobleman, kinsman to the Prince.
MONTAGUE, 1 heads of two Houses, at variance with

each other.
An old Man, uncle to Capulet.
ROMEO, son to Montague.
MERCUTIO, kinsman to the Prince, and friend to Romeo,
Benvolio, nephew to Montague, and friend to Romeu.
TYBALT, nephew to Lady Capulet.
Friar LAWRENCE, a Franciscan.
Friar John, of the same order.
BALTHASAR, servant to Romeo,

servants to Capulet. ABRAM, servant to Montague. An Apothecary. Three Musicians. Chorus. Boy; Page to Paris; PETER; an Officer, Lady MONTAGUE, wife to Montague. Lady CAPULET, wife to Capulet. Juliet, daughter to Capulet, Nurse to Juliet, Citizens of Verona ; several Men and Women, relations to

both houses ; Maskers, Guards, Watchmen, and Ata tendants.

SCENE, during the greater part of the play, in

Verona: once in the fifth Act at Mantua.

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Enter SAMPSON and GREGORY, armed with swords

and bucklers.
Sampson. GREGORY, o’my word, we'll not carry

Gre. No, for then we should be colliers.
Sam. I mean, an we be in choler, we'll draw.

Gre. Ay, while you live, draw your neck out of the collar.

Sam. I strike quickly, being moved.
Gre. But thou art not quickly moved to strike.
Sam. A dog of the house of Montague moves me.

Gre. To move, is—to stir; and to be valiant, isto stand to it: therefore, if thou art moved, thou run'st away.

Sam. A dog of that house shall move me to stand : I will take the wall of any man or maid of Montague's.

Gre. That shows thee a weak slave; for the weakest goes to the wall.

Sam. True; and therefore women, being the weaker

vessels, are ever thrust to the wall :-therefore I will push Montague's men from the wall, and thrust his maids to the wall.

Gre. The quarrel is between our masters, and us their men.

Sam. 'Tis all one, I will show myself a tyrant: when I have fought with the men, I will be cruel with the maids ; I will cut off their heads.

Gre. The heads of the maids?

Sam. Ay, the heads of the maids, or their maidenheads; take it in what sense thou wilt.

Gre. They must take it in sense, that feel it.

Sam. Me they shall feel, while I am able to stand : and, 'tis known, I am a pretty piece of flesh.

Gre. 'Tis well, thou art not fish; if thou hadst, thou hadst been poor John. Draw thy tool; here comes two of the house of the Montagues.


Sam. My naked weapon is out; quarrel, I will back thee.

Gre. How? turn thy back, and run?
Sam. Fear me not.
Gre. No, marry ; I fear thee!

Sam. Let us take the law of our sides; let them begin.

Gre. I will frown, as I pass by; and let them take it as they list.

Sam. Nay, as they dare. I will bite my thumb at them; which is a disgrace to them, if they bear it.




thumb at us, sir? Sum. I do bite my thumb, sir.


thumb at us, sir ? Sam. Is the law on our side, if I say-ay? Gre. No.

Sam. No, sir, I do not bite my thumb at you, sir;. but I bite my thumb, sir.

Gre. Do you quarrel, sir?
Abr. Quarrel, sir ? no, sir.

Sam. If you do, sir, I am for you; I serve as good a man as you.

Abr. No better.
Sam. Well, sir.

Enter Benvolio, at a distance, Gre. Say-better; here comes one of my master's kinsmen.

Sam. Yes, better, sir.
Abr. You lie.

Sam. Draw, if you be men.-Gregory, remember thy swashing blow.

[They fight. Ben. Part, fools; put up your swords; you know not what


[Beats down their swords.


Tyb. What, art thou drawn among these heartless

hinds ? Turn thee, Benvolio, look upon thy death.

Ben, I do but keep the peace; put up thy sword, Or manage it to part these men with me.

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