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for you know, Pyramus and Thisby meet by moon
Doth the moon shine that night we play
Bot. A calendar, a calendar! Look in the almanac; find out moon-shine, find out moon-shine.
Quin. Yes, it doth shine that night.
Bot. Why, then you may leave a casement of the great chamber window, where we play, open; and the moon may shine in at the casement.
Snug. our play?
Quin. Ay; or else one must come in with a bush of thorns and a lanthorn, and say, he comes to disfigure, or to present, the person of moon-shine. Then, there is another thing. We must have a wall in the great chamber; for Pyramus and Thisby, says the story, did talk through the chink of a wall.
Snug. You never can bring in a wall.-What say you, Bottom?
Bot. Some man or other must present wall: and let him have some plaster, or some loam, or some rough-cast about him, to signify wall; or let him hold his fingers thus, and through that cranny shall Pyramus and Thisby whisper.
Quin. If that may be, then all is well. Come, sit down, every mother's son, and rehearse your parts. Pyramus, you begin. When you have spoken your speech, enter into that brake, and so every one according to his cue.
Enter PUCK behind.
Puck. What hempen home-spuns have we swaggering here,
So near the cradle of the fairy queen?
Quin. Speak, Pyramus.-Thisby, stand forth. Pyr. Thisby, the flowers of odious savors sweet,Quin. Odors, odors.
-odors savors sweet:
So hath thy breath, my dearest Thisby dear.— But, hark, a voice! Stay thou but here awhile, And by and by I will to thee appear. Puck. A stranger Pyramus than e'er played here! [Aside.-Exit.
This. Must I speak now?
Quin. Ay, marry, must you; for you must understand, he goes but to see a noise that he heard, and is to come again.
This. Most radiant Pyramus, most lily-white of hue, Of color like the red rose on triumphant brier, Most brisky juvenal, and eke most lovely Jew,
As true as truest horse, that yet would never tire, I'll meet thee, Pyramus, at Ninny's tomb.
Quin. Ninus' tomb, man. Why, you must not speak that yet; that you answer to Pyramus. speak all your part at once, cues and all.-Pyramus, enter; your cue is past; it is, never tire.
Re-enter PUCK, and Воттом with an ass's head. This. O-As true as truest horse, that yet would never tire.
Pyr. If I were fair, Thisby, I were only thine.— Quin. O monstrous! O strange! we are haunted. Pray, masters! fly, masters! help! [Exeunt Clowns. Puck. I'll follow you, I'll lead you about a round, Through bog, through bush, through brake, through
Sometime a horse I'll be, sometime a hound,
A hog, a headless bear, sometime a fire; And neigh, and bark, and grunt, and roar, and burn, Like horse, hound, hog, bear, fire, at every turn.
Bot. Why do they run away?
of them, to make me afeard.
[Exit. This is a knavery
1 Young man.
2 The cues were the last words of the preceding speech, which serve
as a hint to him who was to speak next.
Snout. O Bottom, thou art changed! What do 1 see on thee?
Bot. What do you see? You see an ass's head of your own; do you?
Quin. Bless thee, Bottom! Bless thee! Thou art translated. [Exit. Bot. I see their knavery! This is to make an ass of me; to fright me, if they could. But I will not stir from this place, do what they can. I will walk up and down here, and I will sing, that they shall hear I am not afraid.
The ousel-cock, so black of hue,
The throstle with his note so true,
Tita. What angel wakes me from my flowery bed? [Waking.
The finch, the sparrow, and the lark,
Whose note full many a man doth mark,
for, indeed, who would set his wit to so foolish a bird? Who would give a bird the lie, though he cry cuckoo,
Tita. I pray thee, gentle mortal, sing again.
Bot. Methinks, mistress, you should have little rea
1 The cuckoo, having no variety of note, sings in plain song (plano cantu), by which expression the uniform modulation or simplicity of the chant was anciently distinguished in opposition to prick-song, or variated music sung by note.
son for that; and yet, to say the truth, reason and love keep little company together nowadays. The more the pity, that some honest neighbors will not make them friends. Nay, I can gleek upon occasion.
Tita. Thou art as wise as thou art beautiful.
Bot. Not so, neither; but if I had wit enough to get out of this wood, I have enough to serve mine own
Tita. Out of this wood do not desire to go;
The summer still doth tend upon my state,
Enter four Fairies.
1 Fai. Ready.
All. Where shall we go?
Tita. Be kind and courteous to this gentleman;
1 i. e. jest or scoff.
2 The fruit of a bramble called rubus cæsius; sometimes called also
1 Fai. Hail, mortal!
2 Fai. Hail!
3 Fai. Hail!
4 Fai. Hail!
Bot. I cry your worship's mercy, heartily.-I beseech your worship's name?
Bot. I shall desire you of more acquaintance,' good master Cobweb. If I cut my finger, I shall make bold with you. Your name, honest gentleman ?
Bot. I pray you, commend me to mistress Squash,2 your mother, and to master Peascod, your father. Good master Peas-blossom, I shall desire you of more acquaintance too.-Your name, I beseech you, sir?
Bot. Good master Mustard-seed, I know your patience well. That same cowardly, giant-like ox-beef hath devoured many a gentleman of your house. I promise you, your kindred hath made my eyes water ere now. I desire you more acquaintance, good master Mustard-seed.
Tita. Come, wait upon him; lead him to my bower. The moon methinks looks with a watery eye; And when she weeps, weeps every little flower, Lamenting some enforced chastity.
Tie up my lover's tongue; bring him silently.
Another Part of the Wood.
Obe. I wonder if Titania be awaked;
Then, what it was that next came in her eye,
1 "I shall desire you of more acquaintance." This kind of phraseology
was not uncommon.
2 A squash is an immature peascod.
3 The words are spoken ironically, as it was the prevailing opinion in Shakspeare's time, that mustard excited choler.