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The. Thanks, good Egeus: what's the news with
Ege. Full of vexation come I, with complaint Against my child, my daughter Hermia.Stand forth, Demetrius ;-My noble lord, This man hath my consent to marry her :Stand forth, Lysander ;-and, my gracious duke, This hath bewitch'd the bosom of my child : Thou, thou, Lysander, thou hast given her rhymes, And interchang'd love-tokens with my child: Thou hast by moonlight at her window sung, With feigning voice, verses of feigning love; And stol'n the impression of her fantasy With bracelets of thy hair, rings, gawds*, conceits, Knacks, trifles, nosegays, sweet-meats; messengers, Of strong prevailment in unharden'd youth: With cunning hast thou filch'd my daughter's heart; Turn'd her obedience, which is due to me, To stubborn harshness :-and, my gracious duke, Be it so she will not here before your grace Consent to marry with Demetrius, I beg the ancient privilege of Athens; As she is mine, I may dispose of her: Which shall be either to this gentleman, Or to her death; according to our law, Immediately provided in that case.
The. What say you, Hermia? be advis'd, fair maid:
To you your father should be as a god;
Her. So is Lysander.
Her. I would my father look'd but with my eyes.
The. Rather your eyes must with his judgment
Her. I do entreat your grace to pardon me.
In such a presence here, to plead my thoughts:
The. Either to die the death, or to abjure
Her. So will I grow, so live, so die, my lord,
The. Take time to pause: and, by the next new
(The sealing-day betwixt my love and me,
For aye, austerity and single life.
Dem. Relent, sweet Hermia ;-And, Lysander, yield
Thy crazed title to my certain right.
Lys. You have her father's love, Demetrius ; Let me have Hermia's: do you marry him.
Ege. Scornful Lysander! true, he hath my love; And what is mine my love shall render him; And she is mine; and all my right of her I do estate unto Demetrius.
Lys. I am, my lord, as well deriv'd as he,
And, which is more than all these boasts can be,
Why should not I then prosecute my right?
The. I must confess, that I have heard so much, And with Demetrius thought to have spoke thereof; But, being over-full of self-affairs,
My mind did lose it.-But, Demetrius, come;
I must employ you in some business
How chance the roses there to fade so fast?
Her. Belike, for want of rain; which I could well Beteem them from the tempest of mine eyes.
Lys. Ah me! for aught that ever I could read, Could ever hear by tale or history, The course of true love never did run smooth: But, either it was different in blood.
Her. O cross! too high to be enthrall'd to low ! Lys. Or else misgraffed, in respect of years; Her. O spite! too old to be engag'd to young! Lys. Or else it stood upon the choice of friends: Her. O hell! to choose love by another's eye! Lys. Or, if there were a sympathy in choice, War, death, or sickness did lay siege to it; Making it momentany † as a sound, Swift as a shadow, short as any dream; Brief as the lightning in the collied ‡ night, That in a spleen unfolds both heaven and earth, And ere a man hath power to say,-Behold! The jaws of darkness do devour it up: So quick bright things come to confusion.
Her. If then true lovers have been ever cross'd, It stands as an edíct in destiny:
Then let us teach our trial patience,
Because it is a customary cross;
As due to love, as thoughts, and dreams, and sighs, Wishes, and tears, poor fancy's § followers.
Lys. A good persuasion; therefore, hear me, Hermia.
I have a widow aunt, a dowager
Of great revenue, and she hath no child :
* Give, bestow. † Momentary.
Black, § Love's.
There will I stay for thee.
By that which knitteth souls, and prospers loves;
Lys. Keep promise, love: look, here comes He-
Her. God speed fair Helena! Whither away? Hel. Call you me fair? that fair again unsay. Demetrius loves your fair: O happy fair! Your eyes are lode-stars *; and your tongue's sweet
More tunable than lark to shepherd's ear,
When wheat is green, when hawthorn buds appear.
Were the world mine, Demetrius being bated,
Her. I frown upon him, yet he loves me still.
Her. I give him curses, yet he gives me love. Hel. O, that my prayers could such affection move!
Her. The more I hate, the more he follows me. + Countenance.