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and no such matter: that's the scene that I | Against that power that red it. There will she would see, which will be merely a dumb-show. Let us send her to call him in to dinner. 233 Exeunt Don PEDRO, CLAUDIO, and LEONATO.


Bene. Advancing from the arbour. This can be no trick the conference was sadly borne. They have the truth of this from Hero. They seem to pity the lady: it seems her affections have their full bent. Love me! why, it must be requited. I hear how I am censured: they say I will bear myself proudly, if I perceive the love come from her; they say too that she will rather die than give any sign of affection. I did never think to marry: I must not seem proud : happy are they that hear their detractions, and can put them to mending. They say the lady is fair: 'tis a truth, I can bear them witness; and virtuous: 'tis so, I cannot reprove it; and wise, but for loving me. By my troth, it is no addition to her wit, nor no great argument of her folly, for I will be horribly in love with her. I may chance have some old quirks and remnants of wit broken on me, because I have railed so long against marriage; but doth not the appetite alter? A man loves the meat in his youth that he cannot endure in his age. Shall quips and sentences and these paper bullets of the brain awe a man from the career of his humour? No; the world must be peopled. When I said I would die a bachelor, I did not think I should live till I were married. Here comes Beatrice. By this day! she's a fair lady: I do spy some marks of love in her.



Beat. Against my will I am sent to bid you come in to dinner.

Bene. Fair Beatrice, I thank you for your pains. Beat. I took no more pains for those thanks than you take pains to thank me: if it had been painful, I would not have come.

Bene. You take pleasure then in the message? Beat. Yea, just so much as you may take upon a knife's point, and choke a daw withal. You have no stomach, signior: fare you well. Exit.

Bene. Ha! Against my will I am sent to bid you come in to dinner;' there's a double meaning in that. 'I took no more pains for those thanks than you took pains to thank me;' that's as much as to say, Any pains that I take for you is as easy as thanks. If I do not take pity of her, I am a villain; if I do not love her, I am a Jew. I will go get her picture.



Exit. 280

Enter HERO, MARGARET, and URSULA. Hero. Good Margaret, run thee to the parlour; There shalt thou find my cousin Beatrice Proposing with the prince and Claudio : Whisper her ear, and tell her I and Ursula Walk in the orchard, and our whole discourse Is all of her; say that thou overheard'st us, And bid her steal into the pleached bower, Where honey-suckles, ripen'd by the sun, Forbid the sun to enter; like favourites, Made proud by princes, that advance their pride

To listen our propose. This is thy office;
Bear thee well in it and leave us alone.
Marg. I'll make her come, I warrant you,
Hero. Now, Ursula, when Beatrice doth come,
As we do trace this alley up and down,
Our talk must only be of Benedick:
When I do name him, let it be thy part
To praise him more than ever man did merit.
My talk to thee must be how Benedick
Is sick in love with Beatrice: of this matter
Is little Cupid's crafty arrow made,
That only wounds by hearsay.

Enter BEATRICE, behind.

Now begin;

For look where Beatrice, like a lapwing, runs Close by the ground, to hear our conference.


Urs. The pleasant'st angling is to see the fish
Cut with her golden oars the silver stream,
And greedily devour the treacherous bait :
So angle we for Beatrice; who even now
Is couched in the woodbine coverture.
Fear you not my part of the dialogue.
Hero. Then go we near her, that her car lose

Of the false sweet bait that we lay for it.
No, truly, Ursula, she is too disdainful;
I know her spirits are as coy and wild
As haggards of the rock.

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Urs. But are you sure That Benedick loves Beatrice so entirely? Hero. So says the prince, and my new-trothed lord.

Urs. And did they bid you tell her of it, madam?

Hero. They did entreat me to acquaint her of it;

But I persuaded them, if they lov'd Benedick,
And never to let Beatrice know of it.
To wish him wrestle with affection,


Urs. Why did you so? Doth not the gentle


Deserve as full as fortunate a bed
As ever Beatrice shall couch upon?

Hero. O god of love! I know he doth deserve
As much as may be yielded to a man;
But Nature never fram'd a woman's heart

of prouder stuff than that of Beatrice;
Disdain and scorn ride sparkling in her eyes,
Misprising what they look on, and her wit
Values itself so highly, that to her
All matter else seems weak. She cannot love,
Nor take no shape nor project of affection,
She is so self-endeared.


Sure, I think so;
And therefore certainly it were not good
She knew his love, lest she make sport at it.

Hero. Why, you speak truth. I never yet saw

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If silent, why, a block moved with none.
So turns she every man the wrong side out,
And never gives to truth and virtue that
Which simpleness and merit purchaseth.
Urs. Sure, sure, such carping is not commend-


will only be bold with Benedick for his company; for, from the crown of his head to the sole of his foot, he is all mirth: he hath twice or thrice cut Cupid's bow-string, and the little hangman dare not shoot at him. He hath a heart as sound as a bell, and his tongue is the clapper; for what his heart thinks his tongue speaks.

Hero. No; not to be so odd and from all

As Beatrice is, cannot be commendable.
But who dare tell her so? If I should speak,
She would mock me into air: O! she would
laugh me

Bene. Gallants, I am not as I have been.
Leon. So say I: methinks you are sadder.
Claud. I hope he be in love.

D. Pedro. Hang him, truant! there's no true drop of blood in him, to be truly touched with love. If he be sad, he wants money.


Bene. I have the tooth-ache.

Out of myself, press me to death with wit.
Therefore let Benedick, like cover'd fire,
Consume away in sighs, waste inwardly :
It were a better death than die with mocks,
Which is as bad as die with tickling.


Urs. Yet tell her of it: hear what she will say.
Hero. No; rather I will go to Benedick,
And counsel him to fight against his passion.
And, truly, I'll devise some honest slanders
To stain my cousin with. One doth not know
How much an ill word may empoison liking.
Urs. O! do not do your cousin such a wrong.
She cannot be so much without true judgment,
Having so swift and excellent a wit
As she is priz'd to have, as to refuse
So rare a gentleman as Signior Benedick.
Hero. He is the only man of Italy,
Always excepted my dear Claudio.

Urs. I pray you, be not angry with me, madam,
Speaking my fancy: Signior Benedick,
For shape, for bearing, argument and valour,
Goes foremost in report through Italy.

Hero. Indeed, he hath an excellent good name.
Urs. His excellence did earn it, ere he had it.
When are you married, madam?

Hero. Why, every day, to-morrow.
go in :

I'll show thee some attires, and have thy counsel
Which is the best to furnish me to-morrow.


Urs. She's lim'd, I warrant you: we have caught her, madam.

Hero. If it prove so, then loving goes by haps:
Some Cupid kills with arrows, some with traps.
Exeunt HERO and URSULA.
Beat. Coming forward. What fire is in mine
ears? Can this be true?

Stand I condemn'd for pride and scorn so
Contempt, farewell! and maiden pride, adieu!
No glory lives behind the back of such.
And, Benedick, love on; I will requite thee,

Taming my wild heart to thy loving hand:
If thou dost love, my kindness shall incite thee
To bind our loves up in a holy band;
For others say thou dost deserve, and I
Believe it better than reportingly.




D. Pedro. I do but stay till your marriage be consummate, and then go I toward Arragon. Claud. I'll bring you thither, my lord, if you'll vouchsafe me.

D. Pedro. Nay; that would be as great a soil in the new gloss of your marriage, as to show a child his new coat and forbid him to wear it, I

D. Pedro. Draw it.

Bene. Hang it.

Claud. You must hang it first, and draw it afterwards.

D. Pedro. What! sigh for the tooth-ache?
Leon. Where is but a humour or a worm.

Bene. Well, every one can master a grief but he that has it.

Claud. Yet say I, he is in love.


D. Pedro. There is no appearance of fancy in him, unless it be a fancy that he hath to strange disguises; as, to be a Dutchman to-day, a Frenchman to-morrow, or in the shape of two countries at once, as, a German from the waist downward, all slops, and a Spaniard from the hip upward, no doublet. Unless he have a fancy to this foolery, as it appears he hath, he is no fool for fancy, as you would have it appear he is.

Claud. If he be not in love with some woman, there is no believing old signs: a' brushes his hat o' mornings; what should that bode?


D. Pedro. Hath any man seen him at the barber's?

Claud. No, but the barber's man hath been seen with him, and the old ornament of his cheek hath already stuffed tennis-balls.

Leon. Indeed, he looks younger than he did, by the loss of a beard.

D. Pedro. Nay, a' rubs himself with civet: can you smell him out by that?


Claud. That's as much as to say, the sweet youth's in love.

D. Pedro. The greatest note of it is his melancholy.

Claud. And when was he wont to wash his face? D. Pedro. Yea, or to paint himself? for the which, I hear what they say of him.

Claud. Nay, but his jesting spirit; which is now crept into a lute-string, and now governed by stops.


D. Pedro. Indeed, that tells a heavy tale for him. Conclude, conclude he is in love.

Claud. Nay, but I know who loves him.

D. Pedro. That would I know too: I warrant, one that knows him not.

Claud. Yes, and his ill conditions; and, in despite of all, dies for him.

D. Pedro. She shall be buried with her face upwards.


Bene. Yet is this no charm for the tooth-ache. Old signior, walk aside with me: I have studied eight or nine wise words to speak to you, which these hobby-horses must not hear.

Exeunt BENEDICK and LEONATO. D. Pedro. For my life, to break with him about Beatrice,

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Dogb. Nay, that were a punishment too good for them, if they should have any allegiance in them, being chosen for the prince's watch. Verg. Well, give them their charge, neighbour Dogberry.

Dogb. First, who think you the most desartless man to be constable?


First Watch. Hugh Oatcake, sir, or George Seacoal, for they can write and read.

Dogb. Come hither, neighbour Seacoal. God hath blessed you with a good name: to be a well-favoured man is the gift of fortune, but to write and read comes by nature.

Second Watch. Both which, Master constable,Dogb. You have: I knew it would be your answer. Well, for your favour, sir, why, give God thanks, and make no boast of it; and for your writing and reading, let that appear when there is no need of such vanity. You are thought here to be the most senseless and fit man for the constable of the watch; therefore bear you the lantern. This is your charge: you shall comprehend all vagrom men; you are to bid any man stand, in the prince's name.

Watch. How if a' will not stand?


Dogb. Why, then take no note of him, but let him go; and presently call the rest of the watch together, and thank God you are rid of a knave.

Verg. If he will not stand when he is bidden, he is none of the prince's subjects.

Dogb. True, and they are to meddle with none but the prince's subjects. You shall also make no noise in the streets: for for the watch to

D. John. Even she: Leonato's Hero, your babble and talk is most tolerable and not to be Hero, every man's Hero.

Claud. Disloyal?


D. John. The word is too good to paint out her wickedness; I could say she were worse: think you of a worse title, and I will fit her to it. Wonder not till further warrant: go but with me to-night, you shall see her chamber-window entered, even the night before her weddingday: if you love her then, to-morrow wed her; but it would better fit your honour to change your mind.

Claud. May this be so?

D. Pedro. I will not think it.


D. John. If you dare not trust that you see, confess not that you know. If you will follow me, I will show you enough; and when you have seen more and heard more, proceed accordingly, Claud. If I see anything to-night why I should not marry her to-morrow, in the congregation, where I should wed, there will I shame her.

D. Pedro. And, as I wooed for thee to obtain her, I will join with thee to disgrace her.


D. John. I will disparage her no further till you are my witnesses: bear it coldly but till midnight, and let the issue show itself.

D. Pedro. O day untowardly turned! Claud. O mischief strangely thwarting! D. John. O plague right well prevented! So will you say when you have seen the sequel.

SCENE III.-A Street.


Enter DOGBERRY and VERGES, with the Watch. Dogb. Are you good men and true?

endured. Watch. We will rather sleep than talk: we know what belongs to a watch.


Dogb. Why, you speak like an ancient and most quiet watchman, for I cannot see how sleeping should offend; only have a care that your bills be not stolen. Well, you are to call at all the alehouses, and bid those that are drunk get them to bed.

Watch. How if they will not?

Dogb. Why then, let them alone till they are sober: if they make you not then the better answer, you may say they are not the men you took them for.

Watch. Well, sir.


Dogb. If you meet a thief, you may suspect him, by virtue of your office, to be no true man; and, for such kind of men, the less you meddle or make with them, why, the more is for your honesty.

Watch. If we know him to be a thief, shall we not lay hands on him?

Dogb. Truly, by your office you may; but I think they that touch pitch will be defiled. The most peaceable way for you, if you do take a thief, is to let him show himself what he is and steal out of your company.

Verg. You have been always called a merciful man, partner.

Dogb. Truly, I would not hang a dog by my will, much more a man who hath any honesty in him. Verg. If you hear a child cry in the night, you must call to the nurse and bid her still it. Watch. How if the nurse be asleep and will

Verg. Yea, or else it were pity but they should not hear us? suffer salvation, body and soul.


Dogb. Why, then depart in peace, and let the


child wake her with crying; for the ewe that will not hear her lamb when it baes, will never answer a calf when he bleats.

Verg. 'Tis very true.

You, Dogb. This is the end of the charge. constable, are to present the prince's own person: if you meet the prince in the night, you may stay him.


Verg. Nay, by 'r lady, that I think a' cannot. Dogb. Five shillings to one on 't, with any man that knows the statues, he may stay him: marry, not without the prince be willing; for, indeed, the watch ought to offend no man, and it is an offence to stay a man against his will.

Verg. By 'r lady, I think it be so. Dogb. Ha, ah, ha! Well, masters, good night: an there be any matter of weight chances, call up me. Keep your fellows' counsels and your own, and good night. Come, neighbour.


Watch. Well, masters, we hear our charge: let us go sit here upon the church-bench till two, and then all to bed.

god Bel's priests in the old church-window;
sometime like the shaven Hercules in the smirched
worm-eaten tapestry, where his cod-piece seems
as massy as his club?

Con. All this I see, and I see that the fashion
But art
wears out more apparel than the man.
not thou thyself giddy with the fashion too,
that thou hast shifted out of thy tale into telling
me of the fashion?


Bora. Not so neither; but know that I have to-night wooed Margaret, the lady Hero's gentle-. woman, by the name of Hero: she leans me out at her mistress' chamber-window, bids me a thousand times good night,-I tell this tale vilely :-I should first tell thee how the prince, Claudio, and my master, planted and placed and possessed by my master Don John, saw afar off in the orchard this amiable encounter.


Con. And thought they Margaret was Hero? Bora. Two of them did, the prince and Claudio; but the devil my master knew she was Margaret; and partly by his oaths, which first possessed them, partly by the dark night, which did deceive them, but chiefly by my villany, which did confirm any slander that Don John had made, away went Claudio enraged; swore he would meet her, as he was appointed, next morning at the temple, and there, before the whole congregation, shame her with what he saw over night, 101 and send her home again without a husband. 171 First Watch. We charge you in the prince's name, stand!

Dogb. One word more, honest neighbours. I pray you, watch about Signior Leonato's door; for the wedding being there to-morrow, there is a great coil to-night. Adieu; be vigitant, I beseech you. Excunt DOGBERRY and VERGES. Enter BORACHIO and CONRADE.

Bora. What, Conrade!

Watch. Aside. Peace! stir not.

Bora. Conrade, I say!

Con. Here, man, I am at thy elbow. Bora. Mass, and my elbow itched; I thought there would a scab follow.

Second Watch. Call up the right Master constable. We have here recovered the most dangerous piece of lechery that ever was known in

Con. I will owe thee an answer for that; and the commonwealth.

now forward with thy tale.

Bora. Therefore know I have earned of Don John a thousand ducats.

Con. Is it possible that any villany should be so dear?

Bora. Thou should'st rather ask if it were possible any villany should be so rich; for when rich villains have need of poor ones, poor ones may make what price they will.


Con. I wonder at it.

Bora. That shows thou art unconfirmed. Thou knowest that the fashion of a doublet, or a hat, or a cloak, is nothing to a man.

Con. Yes, it is apparel.

Bora. I mean, the fashion.

Con. Yes, the fashion is the fashion. Bora. Tush! I may as well say the fool's the fool. But seest thou not what a deformed thief this fashion is?

First Watch. And one Deformed is one of them: I know him, a' wears a lock.

Con. Masters, masters!

Second Watch. You'll be made bring Deformed

Bora. Stand thee close then under this penthouse, for it drizzles rain, and I will, like a true drunkard, utter all to thee.


Watch. Aside. Some treason, masters; yet forth, I warrant you. Con. Masters,stand close.


Watch. Aside. I know that Deformed; a' has been a vile thief this seven year; a' goes up and down like a gentleman: I remember his name.

Bora. Didst thou not hear somebody?
Con. No: 'twas the vane on the house.
Bora. Seest thou not, I say, what a deformed
thief this fashion is? how giddily a' turns about
all the hot bloods between fourteen and five-and-
thirty? sometime fashioning them like Pharaoh's
soldiers in the reeky painting; sometime like


First Watch. Never speak: we charge you let us obey you to go with us.

Bora. Weare like to prove a goodly commodity, being taken up of these men's bills.

Con. A commodity in question, I warrant you. Exeunt. Come, we'll obey you.

SCENE IV.-A Room in LEONATO'S House.

Hero. Good Ursula, wake my cousin Beatrice, and desire her to rise.

Urs. I will, lady.

Hero. And bid her come hither.

Urs. Well.


Marg. Troth, I think your other rabato were better.

Hero. No, pray thee, good Meg, I'll wear this. Marg. By my troth's not so good; and I warrant, your cousin will say so.


Hero. My cousin's a fool, and thou art another: I'll wear none but this.

Mary. I like the new tire within excellently, I saw the if the hair were a thought browner; and your gown's a most rare fashion, i' faith. Duchess of Milan's gown that they praise so. Hero. O that exceeds, they say. Marg. By my troth, 's but a night gown in

respect of yours: cloth o' gold, and cuts, and laced with silver, set with pearls down sleeves, side sleeves, and skirts round, underborne with a bluish tinsel; but for a fine, quaint, graceful, and excellent fashion, yours is worth ten on 't. Hero. God give me joy to wear it! for my heart is exceeding heavy.

Marg. "Twill be heavier soon by the weight of a man.


Hero. Fie upon thee! art not ashamed? Marg. Of what, lady? of speaking honourably? Is not marriage honourable in a beggar? Is not your lord honourable without marriage? I think you would have me say, 'saving your reverence, a husband': an bad thinking do not wrest true speaking, I'll offend nobody. Is there any harm in the heavier for a husband?' None, I think, an it be the right husband and the right wife; otherwise 'tis light, and not heavy: ask my Lady Beatrice else; here she comes.


Ilcro. Good morrow, coz.


Beat. Good morrow, sweet Hero. Hero. Why, how now? do you speak in the sick tune?

Beat. I am out of all other tune, methinks. Marg. Clap us into 'Light o' love': that goes without a burthen: do you sing it, and I'll dance it.

Beat. Ye light o' love, with your heels! then, if your husband have stables enough, you'll see he shall lack no barns.

Marg. O illegitimate construction! that with my heels.

I scorn


Beat. 'Tis almost five o'clock, cousin: 'tis time you were ready. By my troth, I am exceeding ill. Heigh-ho!

Marg. For a hawk, a horse, or a husband? Beat. For the letter that begins them all, H. Marg. Well, an you be not turned Turk, there's no more sailing by the star.

Beat. What means the fool, trow? Marg. Nothing I; but God send every one their heart's desire!


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Marg. Moral! no, by my troth, I have no moral meaning; I meant, plain holy-thistle. You may think, perchance, that I think you are in love; nay, by 'r lady, I am not such a fool to think what I list; nor I list not to think what I can; nor indeed, I cannot think, if I would think my heart out of thinking, that you are in love, or that you will be in love, or that you can

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Urs. Madam, withdraw: the prince, the count, Signior Benedick, Don John, and all the gallants of the town, are come to fetch you to church. Hero. Help to dress me, good coz, good Meg, good Ursula. Exeunt. 10)

SCENE V.-Another Room in LEONATO's House. Enter LEONATO, with DOGBERRY and VERGES.

Leon. What would you with me, honest neighbour?

Dogb. Marry, sir, I would have some confidence with you, that decerns you nearly.

Leon. Brief, I pray you; for you see it is a busy time with me.

Dogb. Marry, this it is, sir.
Verg. Yes, in truth it is, sir.
Leon. What is it, my good friends?


Dogb. Goodman Verges, sir, speaks a little off the matter: an old man, sir, and his wits are not so blunt, as, God help, I would desire they were; but, in faith, honest as the skin between his brows.

Verg. Yes, I thank God I am as honest as any man living that is an old man and no honester than I.

Dogb. Comparisons are odorous: palabras, neighbour Verges.

Leon. Neighbours, you are tedious.


Dogb. It pleases your worship to say so, but we are the poor duke's officers; but, truly, for mine own part, if I were as tedious as a king, I could find in my heart to bestow it all of your worship.

Leon. All thy tediousness on me? ha!

Dogb. Yea, an 'twere a thousand pound more than 'tis; for I hear as good exclamation on your worship, as of any man in the city, and though I be but a poor man, I am glad to hear it. Verg. And so am I.


Leon. I would fain know what you have to say. Verg. Marry, sir, our watch to-night, excepting your worship's presence, have ta'en a couple of as arrant knaves as any in Messina.

Dogb. A good old man, sir; he will be talking: as they say, 'When the age is in, the wit is out." God help us! it is a world to see! Well said, i' faith, neighbour Verges: well, God's a good man; an two men ride of a horse, one must ride behind. An honest soul, i' faith, sir: by my troth he is, as ever broke bread; but God is to be worshipped: all men are not alike; alas! good neighbour.


Leon. Indeed, neighbour, he comes too short of you.

Dogb. Gifts that God gives. Leon. I must leave you. Dogb. One word, sir. Our watch, sir, have indeed comprehended two aspicious persons, and

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