Εικόνες σελίδας
Ηλεκτρ. έκδοση

thorns and a lanthorn, and fay, he comes to disfigure, or to prefent, the Perfon of moon-fhine. Then there is another thing; we must have a wall in the great chamber, for Pyramus and Thisby (fays the story) did talk thro' the chink of a wall,

Snug. You never can bring in a wall. What fay you, Bottom?

Bot. Some man or other muft prefent Wall; and let him have some plaifter, or some lome, or fome rough-caft about him, to fignify wall: Or let him hold his fingers thus; and through the cranny fhall Pyramus and Thisby whisper.

Quin. If that may be, then all is well. Come, fit down every mother's fon, and rehearse you parts. Pyramus, you begin; when you have fpoken your speech, enter into that brake; and fo every one according to his cue.

Enter Puck behind.

Puck. What hempen home-fpuns have we fwaggering here,

So near the cradle of the fairy Queen?
What, a play tow'rd? I'll be an auditor;
An Actor too, perhaps, if I fee cause.
Quin. Speak, Pyramus; Thisby stand forth.
Pyr. Thisby, the flower of odious favours fweet.
Quin. Odours, odours.

Pyr. Odours, favours fweet.

So doth thy breath, my dearest Thisby, dear; But hark, a voice! ftay thou but here a whit; 2 And, by and by, I will to thee appear.

In the old Editions,


fay the here a while ;] The Verfes fhould be alternately in Rhyme: but weet in the Clofe of the first Line, and while in the third, will not do for this purpofe. The Author, doubt lefs, gave it;

[Exit Pyramus.


ftay thou but here a whit; i.e. a little while for fo it fignifies, as alfo any thing of no Price, or Confideration; a trifte: in which Senfe it is very frequent with our Author.



[ocr errors]
[ocr errors][ocr errors]

Puck. A ftranger Pyramus than e'er plaid here! [Afide.
Thif. Muft I speak now?

Quin. Ay, marry, must you; for you muft underftand, he goes but to fee a noife that he heard, and is to come again.

Thif. Moft radiant Pyramus, moft lilly-white of hue, Of colour like the red rofe on triumphant brier, Moft brifkly Juvenile, and eke most lovely Jew,

As true as trueft 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; you speak all your part at once, cues and all. Pyramus, enter; your cue is past; it is, never tire.

Re-enter Bottom, with an Afs head.

Thif. O,As true as trueft horse, that yet would never tire.

Pyr. If I were fair, Thisby, I were only thine.
Quin. O monstrous! O ftrange! we are haunted;
pray, mafters; fly, mafters; help! [The Clowns exeunt.
Puck. I'll follow you, I'll lead you about a round.
Through bog, through bufh, through brake, through
bryer; 3

Sometimes a horfe I'll be, fometimes a hound,
A hog, a headlefs bear, fometimes a fire,
And neigh, and bark, and grunt, and roar and burn,
Like horse, hound, hog, bear, fire, at every turn. [Exit.
Bot. Why do they run away? this is a knavery of
them to make me afeard.

Enter Snout.

Snout. O Bottom, thou art chang'd; what do I fee on thee? I

Bot. What do you fee? own, do you?

3 Here are two fyllables wanting. Perhaps it was written, through bog, through mire.


you fee an afs-head of your Enter

It is plain by Bottom's anfwer that Snent mentioned an As's Head. Therefore we fhould read, K Snout.

Enter Quince.

Quin. Blefs thee, Bottom, blefs thee; thou art tranflated.

Bot. I fee their knavery, this is to make an afs of me, to fright me if they can; but I will not ftir from this place, do what they can; I will walk up and down here, and I will fing, that they fhall hear I am not afraid. [Sings.

The Oufel cock, fo black of hue,
With orange-tawny bill,
The throftle with his note fo true,
The wren with little quill.
Queen. What angel wakes me from my flow'ry bed?

Bot. The finch, the fparrow, and the lark, [Sings.
The plain-fong cuckow gray,

Whofe note full many a man doth mark,

And dares not answer, nay.

For, indeed, who would fet his wit to fo foolish a bird? who would give a bird the lye, tho' he cry cuckow never fo?

Queen. I pray thee, gentle mortal, fing again; 4 Mine car is much enamour'd of thy note, So is mine eye enthralled to thy fhape;

[merged small][merged small][ocr errors][merged small]

And thy fair virtue's force (perforce) doth move me, On the first view to fay, to fwear, I love thee.

Bot. Methinks, mistress, you should have little reafon for that and yet, to lay the truth, reafon and love keep little company together now-a-days. The more the pity, that fome honeft neighbours will not make them friends. Nay, I can 5 gleek upon occafion.

Queen. Thou art as wife, as thou art beautiful.

Bot. Not fo neither: but if I had wit enough to get out of this wood, I have enough to ferve mine own


Queen. Out of this wood do not defire to go,
Thou shalt remain here, whither thou wilt or no.
I am a spirit of no common rate;
The fummer ftill doth tend upon my state,
And I do love thee: therefore, go with me,
I'll give thee fairies to attend on thee;
And they fhall fetch thee jewels from the deep,
And fing, while thou on preffed flowers doft fleep:
And I will purge thy mortal groffness so,
That thou shalt like an airy fpirit go.
Peafebloffom! Cobweb! Moth! and Mustardseed!



Enter Four Fairies.

1 Fair. Ready. 2 Fair. And I.

3. Fair. And I.

4 Fair. And I: where fhall we go?

Queen. Be kind and courteous to this gentleman;
Hop in his walks, and gamble in his eyes;
Feed him with apricocks and dewberries,
With purple grapes, green figs and mulberries,
The honey-bags fteal from the humble bees,
5gleck.] Joke or fcoff. POPE.

K 2


And for night-tapers crop their waxen thighs,
And light them at the fiery glow-worm's eyes, 6
To have my love to bed, and to arife:

And pluck the wings from painted butterflies,
To fan the moon-beams from his fleeping eyes;
Nod to him, elves, and do him curtefies.
1 Fair. Hail, mortal, hail!

2 Fair. Hail!

3 Fair. Hail!

Bot. I cry your worship's mercy heartily; I befeeci, your worship's name.

[ocr errors]

Cob. Cobweb.

Bot. I fhall defire of you more acquaintance, good mafter Cobweb; if I cut my finger, I fhall make bold with you. Your name, honeft gentleman.

Peafe. Peafebloom.

Bot. I pray you, commend me to miftrefs Squash your mother, and to master Peafcod your father. Good mafter Peafebloom, I fhall defire of you more acquaintance too. Your name, I beseech you, Sir.

Muf. Mustardfeed.

Bot. Good mafter Mustardjeed, I know 7 your patience well: that fame cowardly giant-like Ox-beef hath devour'd many a gentleman of your house. I promise you, your kindred hath made my eyes water ere now. I defire more of your acquaintance, good mafter Muftardfeed.

Queen. Come, wait upon him, lead him to my bower. The moon, methinks, looks with a watry eye; And when the weeps, weep ev'ry little flower, Lamenting fome enforced chastity!

Tie up my love's tongue, bring him filently. [Exeunt.

6 the fiery glow-worm's eyes.] I know not how ShakeSpeare, who commonly derived his knowledge of nature from his own obfervation, happened to place the glow-worm's light

in his eyes, which is only in his tail.

7 patience.] The Oxford Edition reads, I know your parentage well. I believe the correction is right.


« ΠροηγούμενηΣυνέχεια »