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For disobedience to your father's will ;
Or else to wed Demetrius, as he would ;
Or on Diana's altar to protest
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 Lyfander ! 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 3 lupon. Demetrius.

Lys. I am, my lord, as well deriv'd as he,
As well pofseft: my love is more than his :
My fortunes ev'ry way as fairly rank’d,
If not with vantage, as Demetrius':
And, which is more than all these boasts can be,
I am belov'd of beauteous Hermia.
Why should not I then prosecute my right?
Demetrius (I'll avouch it to his head)
Made love to Nedar's daughter, Helena,
And won her soul; and she, sweet lady, doats,
Devoutly doats, doats in idolatry,
Upon this spotted and inconstant man.

The. I must confess that I have heard so much,
And with Demetrius thought t' have spoke thereof;
But being over-full of self-affairs,
My mind did lose it. But, Demetrius, come,
And come, Egeus ; you shall go with me;
I have some private schooling for you both.

fair Hermia, look you arm your self
To fit your fancies to your father's will ;
Or elfe 'the law of Athens yields you up
(Which by no means we may extenuate)
To death, or to a vow of fingle life.
Come, my Hippolita ; what cheer, my love?
Demetrius, and Egeus, go along ;

I must

I must employ you in some business
Against our nuptials, and confer with you
Of something nearly that concerns your felves.

Ege. With duty and desire we follow you.


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Manent Lysander and Hermia. Lys. How now, my love? why is your cheek so pale? How chance the roles there do fade fo faft?

Her. Belike for want of rain, which I could well
Beteem them from the tempeft of mine eyes.

Lys. Hermia, for ought 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 love!
Lyf. Or elfe mifgraffed, in respect of years
Her. O spight! too old, to be engagéd to young!
Lyf. Or elfe it stood upon the choice of friends
Her. O hell! to chufe love by another's eye!

Lyf. Or if there were a sympathy in choice,
Wat, death, or fickness did lay siege to it;
Making it momentary 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 heav'n 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 crost,
It stands as an edict in destiny:
Then let us teach our tryal 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 ;
From Athens is her house remov'd seven leagues,
And she respects me as her only son.
There, gentle Hermia, may I marry thee,
And to that place the sharp Athenian law
Cannot pursue us.

If thou lov'st me then,
Steal forth thy father's house to-morrow night;
And in the wood, a league without the town,
Where I did meet thee once with Helena
To do observance to the morn of May,
There will I ftay for thee.

Her. My good Lysander,
I swear to thee by Cupid's strongest bow,
By his best arrow with the golden head,
By the simplicity of Venus' doves,
By that which knitteth fouls, and prospers loves,
And by that fire which burn'd the Carthage Queen,
When the false Trojan under fail was seen ;
By all the vows that ever men have broke,
In number more than ever women spoke ;
In that same place thou hast appointed me,
To-morrow truly will I meet with thee.

Lys. Keep promise, love. Look, here comes Helena.

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Enter Helena.
Her. God speed fair Helena! whither away?

Hel. Call you me fair? that fair again unsay,
Demetrius loves you, fair ; O happy fair!
Your eyes are load-stars, and your tongue's sweet air
More tuneable than lark to shepherd's ear,
When wheat is green, when haw-thorn buds appear.
Sickness is catching: oh, were favour so,
4'Your's would I catch,' fair Hermia, ere I go ;
My ear should catch your voice, my eye your eye,
My tongue should catch your tongue's sweet melody.

Your words I'd catch,

Were the world mine, Demetrius being bated,
The rest I'd give to be to you translated.
O teach me how you look, and with what art
You sway the motion of Demetrius' heart.

Her. I frown upon him, yet he loves me still. [skill!
Hel. Oh that your frowns would teach my smiles such
Her. I give him curses, yet he gives me love.
Hel. Oh that my pray’rs could such affection move!
Her. The more I hate, the more he follows me.
Hel. The more I love, the more he hateth me.
Her. S'His fault, oh Helena, is none of mine.
Hel. None but your beauty, would that fault were mine!

Her. Take comfort; he no more shall see my face,
Lysander and my self will fly this place.
Before the time I did Lysander see,
Seem'd Athens like a Paradise to me.
O then, what graces in my love do dwell,
That he hath turn'd a heaven 6 linto hell?

Lys. Helen, to you our minds we will unfold ;
To-morrow night, when Pbæbe doth behold
Her silver visage in the wat'ry glass,
Decking with liquid pearl the bladed grass,
(A time that lovers flights doth still conceal)
Through Athens' gate have we devis'd to steal.

Her. And in the wood, where often you and I
Upon faint primrose beds were wont to lye,
Emptying our bofoms of their counsels i 'sweet ;!
There my Lysander and my self shall meet,
And thence from Athens turn away our eyes,
To seek new friends and stranger 8 /companies.'
Farewel, sweet play-fellow; pray thou for us,
And good luck grant thee thy Demetrius !
Keep word, Lysander, we must starve our sight
From lovers' food, 'till morrow deep midnight. [Ex. Her,
Vol. I.



s His Folly, Helena, is no fault of mine. 6 unto a hell ? 7 fwellid; ...old edit. Theob. emend. 3 companions. ... old edit. Theob. emend,

Lys. I will, my Hermia. Helena, adieu ;

As you on him, Demetrius doat on you! (Exit Lysander.

Hel. How happy fome, o'er other some, can be !
Through Athens I am thought as fair as fhe.
But what of that? Demetrius thinks not fo:
He will not know, what all but he do know.
And as he errs, doating on Hermia's eyes, ,
So I, admiring of his qualities.
Things base and vile, holding no quantity,
Love can transpose to form and dignity:
Love looks not with the eyes, but with the mind,
And therefore is wing’d Cupid painted blind :
Nor hath love's mind of any judgment taste ;
Wings and no eyes figure unheedy haste.
And therefore is love said to be a child,
Because in choice he often is beguild.
As waggish boys themselves in game forswear,
So the boy Love is perjur'd every where.
For ere Demetrius look'd on Hermia's

He hail'd down oaths that he was only mine ;
And when this hail some heat from Hermia felt,
So he diffolv’d, and showers of oaths did melt.
I will go tell him of fair Hermia's flight:
Then to the wood will he to-morrow night
Pursue her; and for this intelligence
If I have thanks, it is a dear expence.
But herein mean I to enrich my pain,
To have his fight thither, and back again. [Exit.

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Enter Quince, Snug, Bottom, Flute, Snowt, and Starveling.
Quin. S all our company here?

Bot. You were best to call them generally, man by man, according to the scrip.,

Quin. Here is the scrowl of every man's name, which



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