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Beat. I cry you mercy, Uncle: by your Grace's pardon.
[Exit Beatrice. Pedro. By my troth, a pleasant-spirited Lady.
Leon. There's little of the melancholy element in her, my Lord; she is never sad but when she sleeps, and not ever sad then; (8) for I have heard my daughter say, she hath often dream’d of an happiness, and wak'd herself with laughing.
Pedro. She cannot endure to hear tell of a husband. Leon. O, by no means, le mocks all her wooers out of fuit.
Pedro. She were an excellent wife for Benedick.
Leon. O Lord, my Lord, if they were but a week marry'd, they would talk themselves mad.
Pedro. Count Claudio, when mean you to go to church?
Claud. To-morrow, my Lord; time goes on crutches, 'till love have all his rites.
Leon. Not 'till Monday, my dear fon, which is hence a just seven-night, and a time too brief too, to have all things answer my mind.
Pedro. Come, you shake the head at so long a breathing; but, I warrant thee, Claudio, the time shall not go dully by us; I will in the Interim undertake one of Hercules's labours, which is to bring Signior Benedick and the Lady Beatrice into a mountain of affection the one with the other; I would fain have it a match, and I doubt not to fashion it, if you three will but minister fach aslistance as I shall give you direction.
Leon. My Lord, I am for you, though it cost me ter nights watchings. Claud. And I, my Lord. Pedro. And you too, gentle Hero?
(8) For I have beard my daugbter say, the hatb often drean'd of unhappiness, and wak'd berself with laughing. ] Tho' all the impressions agree in this reading, surely, 'tis absolutely
repugnant to what Leonato intends to say, which is this; “ Beatrice is never fad, but when the
and not ever fad then; for she hath often dream'd of some“thing m.rry, (an happiness, as the poet phrases it,) and wak’d her"" self with laughing.'
Hero. I will do any modeft office, my Lord, to help my Cousin to a good husband.
Pedro. And Benedick is not the unhopefullest husband that I know: thus far I can praise him, he is of a noble Arain, of approv’d valour, and confirm'd honesty. I will teach you how to humour your Cousin, that she shall fall in love with Benedick; and I with your two helps, will fo practise on Benedick, that in despight of his quick wit, and his queasy ftomach, he shall fall in love with Beatrice : if we can do this, Cupid is no longer an archer, his glory shall be ours, for we are the only Love-Gods; go in with me, and I will tell you my drift. [Excunt.
SCENE changes to another Apartment in
Enter Don John and Borachio.
fobn. I Daughter of Leonato
T is so, the Count Claudio shall marry the
Bora. Yea, my Lord, but I can cross it.
John. Any bar, any cross, any impediment will be medicinable to me; I am fick in displeasure to him; and whatsoever comes athwart his affection, ranges evenly with mine. How canst thou cross this marriage?
Bora. Not honestly, my Lord, but fo covertly that no dishonefty shall appear in me.
John. Shew me briefly how.
Bora. I think, I told your lordship a year since, how much I am in the favour of Margaret, the waitinggentlewoman to Hero.
John. I remember.
Bora. I can, at any unseasonable instant of the night, appoint her to look out at her Lady's chamber-window.
John. Whát life is in That, to be the death of this marriage ?
Bora. The poison of That lies in you to temper; go you to the Prince your brother, spare not to tell him, that he hath wrong'd his Honour in marrying the re.
nown's Claudio, (whose estimation do you mightily hold
John. What proof shall I make of That ?
for any other issue ?
John. Only to despite them, I will endeavour any thing.
(9) Bora. Go then find me a meet hour, to draw Don
(9) Bora. Gothen, find me a meet hour to draw Don Pedro and the
Count Claudio, alone; tell them that you know Hero loves me ; Offer ti em instances which mal bear no less likelibood than to see me ar ber chamber-window; bear me call Margaret, Hero; bear Margaret term me CLAUDIO ; and bring them to see this the very night
before the intended wedding. ) Thus the whole stream of the editions from the first Quarto downwards. I am oblig'd here to give a short account of the Plot depending, that the emendation I have made may appear the more clear and unquestionable. The business ftands thus: Claudio, a favourite of the Arragon Prince, is, by his interceflions with her father, to be married to fair Hero. Dan Jibon natural brother of the Prince, and a hater of Claudio, is in his plein zealous to disappoint the match, Boracbio, a rascally dependani on Don Xhn, offers his assistance, and engiges to break off the marriage by this stratagem. « Teil the Prince and Claudio (lays he) that Hero " is in love with Me; they won't believe it ; offer them proofs, as " that they hall sie me converse with her in her chamber-window; “I am in the good graces of her waiting-woman Margaret; and I'll s prevail with Margaret at a dead hour of night to ferfonate her “ mistress Hero; do you then bring the Prince an) Claudio to over“ hear our discourse; and They shall have the torment to hear me “address Margaret by the name of Hero, and her say sweet things s to me by the name of Claudio.'
-This is the substance of Boracbio's device to make Hero suspected of disloyalty, and to break off her match with Claudio. But in the name of common sense, could it displease Claudio to hear his mistress making use of his name tenderly? If he faw another man with her, and heard her call him Claudio, he might reasonably think her betray'd, but not have the fame reafun to accuse her of disloyalty. Besides, how could her naming C'aud:o make the Prince and Claudio believe that she lov’d Borachio, as he defires Don John to infinuate to them that she did ? The circumstances weigh’d, there is no doubt but the passage ought to be reform’d, as I have settled in the text.
- bear me call Margaret, Hero; bear Margaret term me BOR ACH10.
I made this correction in my SHAKESPEARE restor'd, and Mr. Pope has thought fit tacitly to embrace it in his last edition. B 3
Pedro, and the Count Claudio, alone; tell them, that you know, Hero loves me; intend a kind of zeal both to the Prince and Claudio, (as in a love of your
brother's honcur who hath made this match ;) and his friend's reputation, (who is thus like to be cozen'd with the semblance of a maid,) that you have discover'd thus ; they will hardly believe this without trial; offer them instances, which shall bear no less likelihood than to see me at her chamber-window; hear me call Margaret, Hero; hear Margaret term me Borachio; and bring them to see this, the very night before the intended wedding ; for in the mean time I will so fashion the matter, that Hero shall be absent; and there shall appear such seeming truths of Hero's disloyalty, that jealousy shall be call'd assurance, and all the preparation overthrown.
John. Grow this to what adverse issue it can, I will put
it in practice: be cunning in the working this, and thy fee is a thousand ducats.
Bora. Be thou constant in the accusation, and my cunning shall not shame me. John. I will presently go learn their day of marriage.
SCENE changes to Leonato's Orchard.
Enter Benedick, and a Boy.
Bo Boy. Signior.
Bene. In my chamber window lies a book, bring it hither to me in the orchard. Boy. I am here already, Sir.
[Exit Boy, Bene. I know that, but I would have thee hence, and here again.-I do much wonder, that one man, seeing how much another man is a fool, when he dedicates his beliaviours to love, will, after he hath laught at such Mallow follies in others, become the argument of his own fcorn, by falling in love! and such a man is Claudio. I have known, when there was no musick with him
but the drum and the fife; and now had he rather hear the taber and the pipe; I have known, when he would have walk'd ten mile a-foot, to see a good armour; and now will he lye ten nights awake, carving the fashion of a new doublet. He was wont to speak plain, and to the purpose, like an honest man and a soldier ; and now is he turn’d orthographer, his words are a very fantastical banquet, just so many strange dishes. May I be fo converted, and see with these eyes ? I cannot tell; I think not. I will not be sworn, but love may transform me to an oyster ; but I'll take my oath on it, 'till he have made an oyster of me, he hall never make me such a fool : one woman is fair, yet I am well; another is wise, yet I am well; another virtuous, yet I am well. But 'till all graces be in one woman, one woman shall not come in my grace. Rich she shall be, that's certain ; (10) "" wise, or I'il none; virtuous, or l'll never cheapen “ her: fair, or I'll never look on her”; mild, or come not near me; noble, or not I for an angel ; of good discourse, an excellent musician, and her hair shall be of what colour it please God. Ha! the Prince and Monsieur Love! I will hide me in the arbour. [Withdraws. Enter Don Pedro, Leonato, Claudio, and Balthazar. Pedro. Come, shall we hear this musick ?
Claud. Yea, my good lord; how still the evening is, As huih'd on purpose to grace harmony!
Pedro. See you where Benedick hath hid himself?
Claud. O very well, my lord; the mufick ended, We'll fit the kid-fox with a penny-worth.
Pedro. Come Balthazar, we'll hear that song again.
(10) “Wife, or I'll none; virtuous, or I'll never cheapen ber; fair, " or I'll never look on ber ;] These words, says Mr. Pope, added out of the edition of 1623. But they are likewise, before that, in the Quarto of 1600. They are also in the second and third impressions in
and in the two editions by Mr. Rowe. Where is it they are not then, that they are thus said to be added by this wonderful Collator? They happen to be extant in the very first edition, that we know of; they keep their place in an edition publish'd 23 years after that; and therefore, Mr. Pope says, they are added from this subseB 4