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Cerveauvide. Voici venir la belle miss Anna! Que ne puis-je rajeunir pour l'amour de vous, miss Anna !
Anna. Le dîner est servi. Messieurs, mon père désire l'honneur de votre compagnie.
Cerveauvide. Je me rends à ses ordres, miss Anna.
Cerveauvide et sir Hugues Evans entrent chez M. Page.
Nigaudin. Merci, je n'ai pas faim. (A Simple.) Va, drôle, quoique tu sois mon laquais, va servir mon cousin Cerveauvide.
Simple sort. Nigaudin. (Continuant.) Tout juge de paix qu'on est, on peut accepter les services du laquais de son ami; je n'ai encore à mon service que trois hommes et un petit garçon, jusqu'à ce que ma mère soit morte. Mais qu'importe ? en attendant, je vis comme un pauvre gentilhomme.
Anna. Je ne rentrerai point sans vous, monsieur; personne ne s'asseoira que vous ne soyez venu.
Nigaudin. Je ne mangerai rien, sur ma parole; je ne vous en remercie
Anna. Je vous en prie, monsieur, veuillez entrer.
LES JOYEUSES COMMÈRES DE WINDSOR.-Acte I. Scène I.
“I know a bank whereon the wild thyme blows,
Where oxlips and the nodding violet grows;
Lulld in these flowers with dances and delight." The Midsummer Night's Dream is a brilliant gem of fancy and romance; and, in richness and floridness of description, far exceeds any other of the great poet's ideal productions. Over each character there is woven an airy lightness, which charms our imagination, and drives away the gross and foggy vapours of sober and solid realities.
The plot is founded on the marriage of THESEUS with HIPPOLYTA; at which OBERON and TITANIA, the King and Queen of the fairies, determine to take part. Air-like though they be, still, like erring mortals, they have their jealousies, and a most unseemly bickering takes place between them, which ends in OBERON determining to have his revenge. For this purpose he employs Puck, an agile fairy, who will
-“ Put a girdle round about the earth,
In forty minutes," to fetch a flower, the juice of which, if squeezed in the eye of a sleeper- ,
“Will make or man or woman madly dote
Upon the next live creature that it sees.” TITANIA goes to sleep, and OBERON squeezes the juice of the flower in her eyelids. He also sends Puck to perform the same office on a disdainful youth, who flees the lady loving him. Puck does this duty so carelessly as to choose LYSANDER, who is deeply in love with HERMIA, whilst the object of his search should have been DEMETRIUS, who flees from HELENA, devotedly attached to him. When these lovers awake, LYSANDER first sees HELENA, and, quitting his dear HERMIA, makes love to her, together with DEMETRIUS. This produces such a “scene” between the ladies, that we gladly draw a veil over their follies and failings.
Meanwhile, a company of strolling players rehearse near where Titania, with her “ “moistened eyelids,” is sleeping. Mischievous Puck changes one of them, Borrom, into the semblance of an ass. Titania awakes, and, owing to the potency of the juice, falls passionately in love with this caricature of a mortal. OBERON, beginning to feel jealous, relents, and restores TITANIA and Bottom to their pristine state, so that they may
“Think no more of this night's accidents,
But as the fierce vexation of a dream.
OBERon and TITANIA become reconciled, and resolve to grace, on the morrow, the nuptials of THESEUS.
All the sleepers are now awakened. Bottom finds that he is not an ass, as he had thought himself to be; DEMETRIUS wakes up to love HELENA; LYSANDER and HERMIA are reconciled to their parents; and OBERON and TITANIA lend themselves and their fairies to perform a shadow-dance, in honour of THESEUS and his friends: and so ends this sparkling comedy.