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Reference > william Shakespeare > The Oxford Shakespeare > A Midsummer-Night’s Dream
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CONTENTS · PLAY CONTENTS · DRAMATIS PERSONÆ · BIBLIOGRAPHIC RECORD
William Shakespeare (1564–1616).  The Oxford Shakespeare.  1914.

You are watching: Who speaks the line lord what fools these mortals be

 
A Midsummer-Night’s Dream
 
Act III. Scene II.
 

Another part of the Wood.
 

Enter OBERON.
  Obe.  I wonder if Titania it is in awak’d;
Then, what it was that next came in her eye,
Which she should dote on in extremity.        5
Here come my messenger.
 

        How now, foolish spirit!
What night-rule now around this haunted grove?
  Puck.  My mistress through a monster is in love.        10
Near to her close and also consecrated bower,
While she remained in her dull and sleeping hour,
A crew that patches, crude mechanicals,
That work for bread ~ above Athenian stalls,
Were met together to rehearse a play        15
Intended for good Theseus’ nuptial day.
The shallowest thick-skin of the barren sort,
Who Pyramus presented in their sport
Forsook his scene, and also enter’d in a brake,
When ns did him at this benefit take;        20
An ass’s nowl I addressed on his head:
Anon his Thisbe must be answered,
And forth my mimick comes. Once they the spy,
As wild geese that the climb fowler eye,
Or russet-pated choughs, countless in sort,        25
Rising and also cawing at the gun’s report,
Sever themselves, and madly sweep the sky;
So, in ~ his sight, far his fellows fly,
And, at our stamp, below o’er and o’er one falls;
He murder cries, and help from Athens calls.        30
Their sense for this reason weak, lost with your fears thus strong,
Made senseless things begin to perform them wrong;
For briers and thorns at their apparel snatch;
Some sleeves, part hats, indigenous yielders all things catch.
I led castle on in this distracted fear,        35
And left sweet Pyramus analyzed there;
When in that moment, for this reason it involved pass,
Titania wak’d and also straightway lov’d one ass.
  Obe.  This drops out much better than I might devise.
But hast thou however latch’d the Athenian’s eyes        40
With the love-juice, as I go bid thee do?
  Puck.  I take it him sleeping,—that is finish’d too,—
And the Athenian mrs by his side;
That, when he wak’d, of pressure she must be ey’d.
 

        45
  Obe.  Stand close: this is the same Athenian.
  Puck.  This is the woman; yet not this the man.
  Dem.  O! why rebuke you him that loves you so?
Lay breath so bitterness on her bitter foe.
  Her.  Now I yet chide; however I need to use thee worse,        50
For thou, ns fear, hast provided me reason to curse.
If she hast slain Lysander in his sleep,
Being o’er shoes in blood, plunge in knee deep,
And kill me too.
The sun was not so true unto the day        55
As he to me. Would he have stol’n away
From sleeping Hermia? I’ll think as soon
This whole planet may it is in bor’d, and that the moon
May v the center creep, and so displease
Her brother’s noontide with the Antipodes.        60
It cannot be but thou besides murder’d him;
So should a murderer look, so dead, therefore grim.
  Dem.  So have to the murder’d look, and also so need to I,
Piere’d through the heart v your stern cruelty;
Yet you, the murderer, look together bright, as clear,        65
As yonder Venus in her glimmering sphere.
  Her.  What’s this to mine Lysander? where is he?
Ah! great Demetrius, it must be thou provide him me?
  Dem.  I had actually rather provide his carcass to my hounds.
  Her.  Out, dog! out, cur! you driv’st me previous the bounds        70
Of maiden’s patience. Hast she slain him then?
Henceforth be never ever number’d among men!
O! as soon as tell true, phone call true, e’en because that my sake;
Durst thou have look’d top top him being awake,
And hast she kill’d the sleeping? O brave touch!        75
Could not a worm, one adder, execute so much?
An adder go it; for v doubler tongue
Than thine, thou serpent, never adder stung.
  Dem.  You invest your enthusiasm on a mispris’d mood:
I am no guilty of Lysander’s blood,        80
Nor is the dead, for aught that I have the right to tell.
  Her.  I pray thee, phone call me then the he is well.
  Dem.  An if ns could, what have to I obtain therefore?
  Her.  A privilege never to check out me more.
And from thy hated presence part I so;        85
See me no more, whe’r he be dead or no.  
  Dem.  There is no adhering to her in this fierce vein:
Here because of this for a when I will remain.
So sorrow’s heaviness doth heavier grow
For debt the bankrupt sleep doth sorrow owe;        90
Which currently in part slight measure it will certainly pay,
If because that his tender below I make some stay.  
  Obe.  What hast thou done? she hast failure quite,
And laid the love-juice on part true-love’s sight:
Of her misprision need to perforce ensue        95
Some true-love turn’d, and also not a false turn’d true.
  Puck.  Then fate o’er-rules, that, one male holding troth,
A million fail, confounding oath ~ above oath.
  Obe.  About the timber go swifter 보다 the wind,
And Helena the Athens look thou find:        100
All fancy-sick she is, and pale that cheer
With sighs of love, that cost the fresh blood dear.
By some illusion see thou lug her here:
I’ll charm his eyes versus she execute appear.
  Puck.  I go, i go; look how I go;        105
Swifter than arrowhead from the Tartar’s bow.  
  Obe.  Flower the this violet dye,
        Hit through Cupid’s archery,
        Sink in to apologize of his eye.
        When his love that doth espy,        110
        Let her shine together gloriously
        As the Venus of the sky.
        When thou wak’st, if she it is in by,
        Beg of she for remedy.
 

        115
  Puck.  Captain of ours fairy band,
        Helena is here at hand,
        And the youth, mistook through me,
        Pleading because that a lover’s fee.
        Shall we their fond pageant see?        120
        Lord, what fools this mortals be!
  Obe.  Stand aside: the noise castle make
        Will cause Demetrius to awake.
  Puck.  Then will 2 at when woo one;
        That have to needs be sports alone;        125
        And those things do ideal please me
        That befall preposterously.
 

  Lys.  Why should you think the I must woo in scorn?
  Scorn and derision never come in tears:        130
Look, as soon as I vow, ns weep; and also vows therefore born,
  In their nativity all fact appears.
How can these things in me it seems to be ~ scorn come you,
Bearing the badge of belief to prove lock true?
  Hel.  You do advancement your cunning an ext and more.        135
  When fact kills truth, O devilish-holy fray!
These vows are Hermia’s: will certainly you offer her o’er?
  Weigh oath v oath, and also you will certainly nothing weigh:
Your vows, come her and also me, placed in two scales,
Will even weigh, and both together light together tales.        140
  Lys.  I had actually no judgment when to her i swore.
  Hel.  Nor none, in mine mind, currently you offer her o’er.
  Lys.  Demetrius loves her, and he loves not you.
  Dem.    O Helen! goddess, nymph, perfect, divine!
To what, my love, shall ns compare thine eyne?        145
Crystal is muddy. O! just how ripe in show
Thy lips, those kissing cherries, tempting grow;
This pure congealed white, high Taurus’ snow,
Fann’d v the east wind, transforms to a crow
When she hold’st increase thy hand. O! let me kiss        150
That princess of pure white, this seal of bliss.
  Hel.  O spite! O hell! I check out you all are bent
To collection against me for your merriment:
If you were civil and also knew courtesy,
You would not execute me therefore much injury.        155
Can you no hate me, as I recognize you do,
But girlfriend must join in souls to mock me too?
If you were men, as males you room in show,
You would not use a tenderness lady so;
To vow, and also swear, and also superpraise mine parts,        160
When i am certain you dislike me through your hearts.
You both space rivals, and love Hermia,
And now both rivals, come mock Helena:
A trim exploit, a manly enterprise,
To conjure tears increase in a bad maid’s eyes        165
With your derision! nobody of noble sort
Would so violation a virgin, and extort
A bad soul’s patience, all to do you sport.
  Lys.  You room unkind, Demetrius; be not so;
For you love Hermia; this you understand I know:        170
And here, with all great will, v all my heart,
In Hermia’s love ns yield girlfriend up my part;
And your of Helena to me bequeath,
Whom I execute love, and will carry out to mine death.
  Hel.  Never did mockers waste more idle breath.        175
  Dem.  Lysander, save thy Hermia; I will certainly none:
If e’er i lov’d her, all the love is gone.
My heart with her but as guest-wise sojourn’d,
And now to Helen it is house return’d,
There come remain.        180
  Lys.        Helen, the is not so.
  Dem.  Disparage no the faith thou dost not know,
Lest come thy hazard thou aby that dear.
Look! wherein thy love comes: yonder is thy dear.
 

        185
  Her.  Dark night, the from the eye his duty takes,
The ear an ext quick of apprehension makes;
Wherein it doth impair the see sense,
It payment the hearing dual recompense.
Thou art not by mine eye, Lysander, found;        190
Mine ear, I thank it, carried me to thy sound.
But why unkindly didst thou leave me so?
  Lys.  Why must he stay, who love doth press to go?
  Her.  What love might press Lysander from mine side?
  Lys.  Lysander’s love, that would not let that bide,        195
Fair Helena, who an ext engilds the night
Than all yon fiery oes and eyes the light.
Why seek’st she me? could not this do thee know,
The hate I be affected by each other thee made me leave thee so?
  Her.  You speak no as you think: it cannot be.        200
  Hel.  Lo! she is just one of this confederacy.
Now i perceive they have actually conjoin’d all three
To fashion this false sport regardless of me.
Injurious Hermia! many ungrateful maid!
Have girlfriend conspir’d, have you through these contriv’d        205
To bait me v this foul derision?
Is every the counsel that we two have shar’d,
The sister-vows, the hrs that we have spent,
When we have chid the hasty-footed time
For parting us, O! is it all forgot?        210
All school-days’ friendship, childhood innocence?
We, Hermia, like two synthetic gods,
Have v our neelds produced both one flower,
Both on one sampler, sit on one cushion,
Both warbling that one song, both in one key,        215
As if ours hands, our sides, voices, and minds,
Had to be incorporate. Therefore we thrived together,
Like to a double cherry, seeming parted,
But however an union in partition;
Two lovely berry moulded top top one stem;        220
So, v two seeming bodies, yet one heart;
Two the the first, like coats in heraldry,
Due but to one, and crowned with one crest.
And will you rental our old love asunder,
To sign up with with males in scorning your negative friend?        225
It is no friendly, ’tis not maidenly:
Our sex, and I, may chide you because that it,
Though ns alone perform feel the injury.
  Her.  I am amazed at her passionate words.
I scorn you not: it appears that you scorn me.        230
  Hel.  Have girlfriend not collection Lysander, together in scorn,
To follow me and also praise my eyes and also face,
And make your other love, Demetrius,—
Who even but now did spurn me through his foot,—
To call me goddess, nymph, divine and rare,        235
Precious, celestial? Wherefore speak he this
To she he hates? and also wherefore doth Lysander
Deny your love, so well-off within his soul,
And soft me, forsooth, affection,
But through your setup on, by her consent?        240
What though i be not so in grace as you,
So hung upon v love, so fortunate,
But miserable most to love unlov’d?
This you have to pity fairly than despise.
  Her.  I know not what you mean by this.        245
  Hel.  Ay, do, persever, counterfeit sad looks,
Make mouths top top me as soon as I turn my back;
Wink every at other; host the sweet jest up:
This sport, fine carried, shall be chronicled.
If girlfriend have any type of pity, grace, or manners,        250
You would certainly not do me such an argument.
But, fare ye well: ’tis partially mine own fault,
Which fatality or absence soon chandelier remedy.
  Lys.  Stay, tenderness Helena! hear mine excuse:
My love, my life, mine soul, fair Helena!        255
  Hel.  O excellent!
  Her.        Sweet, execute not scorn she so.
  Dem.  If she cannot entreat, I have the right to compel.
  Lys.  Thou canst compel no more than she entreat:
Thy threats have no an ext strength 보다 her weak prayers.        260
Helen, ns love thee; by mine life, i do:
I oath by the which i will shed for thee,
To prove him false that states I love thee not.
  Dem.  I say i love thee much more than he have the right to do.
  Lys.  If thou to speak so, withdraw, and also prove that too.        265
  Dem.  Quick, come!
  Her.        Lysander, whereto has tendency all this?
  Lys.  Away, girlfriend Ethiop!
  Dem.        No, no, he’ll …
Seem to break loose; take it on, together you would certainly follow,        270
But however come not: you room a tame man, go!
  Lys.    Hang off, you cat, thou burr! vile thing, permit loose,
Or I will certainly shake thee indigenous me favor a serpent.
  Her.  Why are you grown for this reason rude? what readjust is this,
Sweet love,—        275
  Lys.        Thy love! out, tawny Tartar, out!
Out, loathed medicine! hated poison, hence!
  Her.  Do you not jest?
  Hel.        Yes, sooth; and so perform you.
  Lys.  Demetrius, i will save my word with thee.        280
  Dem.  I would I had your bond, for i perceive
A weak bond holds you: I’ll no trust her word.
  Lys.  What! have to I hurt her, to win her, kill her dead?
Although I dislike her, I’ll not damage her so.
  Her.  What! have the right to you carry out me greater harm 보다 hate?        285
Hate me! wherefore? O me! what news, my love?
Am not I Hermia? are not friend Lysander?
I am together fair currently as i was erewhile.
Since night girlfriend lov’d me; yet, because night you left me:
Why, climate you left me,—O, the god forbid!—        290
In earnest, shall i say?
  Lys.        Ay, by my life;
And never ever did desire to watch thee more.
Therefore be out of hope, that question, doubt;
Be certain, nothing truer: ’tis no jest,        295
That I execute hate thee and also love Helena.
  Her.  O me! girlfriend juggler! friend canker-blossom!
You thief of love! what! have actually you come by night
And stol’n mine love’s love from him?
  Hel.        Fine, i’ faith!        300
Have girlfriend no modesty, no maiden shame,
No touch that bashfulness? What! will you tear
Impatient answers indigenous my gentle tongue?
Fie, fie! friend counterfeit, you puppet you!
  Her.  Puppet! why, so: ay, that means goes the game.        305
Now ns perceive that she hath do compare
Between ours statures: she hath urg’d her height;
And with her personage, her tall personage,
Her height, forsooth, she on foot prevail’d through him.
And are you grown therefore high in his esteem,        310
Because ns am so dwarfish and so low?
How low am I, thou painted maypole? speak;
How low am I? i am not yet therefore low
But the my nails have the right to reach unto thine eyes.
  Hel.  I pray you, despite you mock me, gentlemen,        315
Let her not hurt me: ns was never ever curst;
I have actually no gift at all in shrewishness;
I am a appropriate maid for my cowardice:
Let her not strike me. Friend perhaps might think,
Because she is something reduced than myself,        320
That i can match her.
  Her.        Lower! hark, again.
  Hel.  Good Hermia, carry out not be so bitter with me.
I evermore did love you, Hermia,
Did ever before keep your counsels, never wrong’d you;        325
Save that, in love unto Demetrius,
I told that of your stealth depend this wood.
He follow’d you; for love i follow’d him;
But that hath chid me hence, and threaten’d me
To strike me, spurn me, nay, to death me too:        330
And now, for this reason you will certainly let me quiet go,
To Athens will I bear my folly back,
And follow you no further: allow me go:
You see how simple and just how fond ns am.
  Her.  Why, acquire you gone. Who is ’t the hinders you?        335
  Hel.  A foolish heart, that i leave right here behind.
  Her.  What! with Lysander?
  Hel.        With Demetrius.
  Lys.  Be no afraid: she shall not harm thee, Helena.
  Dem.  No, sir; she candlestick not, despite you take her part.        340
  Hel.  O! when she’s angry, she is keen and shrewd.
She was a vixen when she went to school:
And despite she be however little, she is fierce.
  Her.  ‘Little’ again! nothing yet ‘low’ and ‘little!’
Why will certainly you endure her to flout me thus?        345
Let me come to her.
  Lys.        Get friend gone, friend dwarf;
You minimus, that hindering knot-grass made;
You bead, girlfriend acorn!
  Dem.        You are too officious        350
In her behalf the scorns her services.
Let her alone; speak no of Helena;
Take not her part, for, if thou dost intend
Never so small show the love to her,
Thou shalt aby it.        355
  Lys.        Now she holds me not;
Now follow, if thou dar’st, to shot whose right,
Or thine or mine, is most in Helena.
  Dem.  Follow! nay, I’ll go with thee, cheek by jole.  
  Her.  You, mistress, every this coil is ’long of you:        360
Nay, go not back.
  Hel.        I will certainly not trust you, I,
Nor much longer stay in her curst company.
Your hands than mine are faster for a fray,
My foot are much longer though, to operation away.          365
  Her.  I am amaz’d, and also know not what come say.  
  Obe.  This is thy negligence: tho thou mistak’st,
Or else commit’st her knaveries wilfully.
  Puck.  Believe me, king that shadows, ns mistook.
Did no you call me i should recognize the man        370
By the Athenian clothes he had on?
And so much blameless proves mine enterprise,
That I have actually ’nointed an Athenian’s eyes;
And so far am ns glad the so did sort,
As this their jangling ns esteem a sport.        375
  Obe.  Thou see’st these lovers look for a ar to fight:
Hie therefore, Robin, overcast the night;
The starry welkin cover you anon
With drooping fog as black as Acheron;
And lead these testy rivals therefore astray,        380
As one come no within another’s way.
Like come Lysander sometime structure thy tongue,
Then row Demetrius up with bitter wrong;
And at some time rail thou prefer Demetrius;
And from each various other look thou command them thus,        385
Till o’er your brows death-counterfeiting sleep
With leaden legs and also batty wing doth creep:
Then crush this herb right into Lysander’s eye;
Whose liquor afoot this building property,
To take it from thence all error with his might,        390
And do his eyeballs roll with wonted sight.
When they following wake, every this derision
Shall seem a dream and fruitless vision;
And earlier to Athens shall the lovers wend,
With league whose date till fatality shall never end.        395
Whiles ns in this affair carry out thee employ,
I’ll to my queen and beg she Indian boy;
And climate I will certainly her charmed eye release
From monster’s view, and also all points shall be peace.
  Puck.  My fairy lord, this need to be done v haste,        400
For night’s swift dragons reduced the clouds complete fast,
And yonder shines Aurora’s harbinger;
At whose approach, ghosts, wandering here and there,
Troop house to churchyards: damned spirits all,
That in cross-ways and floods have actually burial,        405
Already to their wormy beds space gone;
For are afraid lest day should look their shames upon,
They wilfully themselves exile native light,
And must for aye consort with black-brow’d night.
  Obe.  But we space spirits of one more sort.        410
I with the morning’s love have oft do sport;
And, choose a forester, the groves might tread,
Even it rotates the eastern gate, all fiery-red,
Opening top top Neptune through fair blessed beams,
Turns right into yellow yellow his salt eco-friendly streams.        415
But, notwithstanding, haste; make no delay:
We may effect this business yet ere day.  
  Puck.  Up and down, up and also down;
        I will lead them up and also down:
        I to be fear’d in field and town;        420
        Goblin, command them up and down.

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