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Taken from the Complete Works of William Shakespeare

Love’s Labour’s Lost


ACT IV. SCENE II.—Another part of the Park.


Jaq. God bless the king!

King.      What present hast thou there?

Cost. Some certain treason.

King.                    What makes treason here.

Cost. Nay, it makes nothing, sir.

King.                    If it mar nothing neither,

The treason and you go in peace away together.

Jaq. I beseech your grace, let this letter be


Our parson misdoubts it; ’twas treason he said.

King. Biron, read it over.

[Giving him the letter.

Where hadst thou it?

Jaq. Of Costard.

King. Where hadst thou it?

Cost. Of Dun Adramadio, Dun Adramadio.

King. How now! what is in you? why dost

thou tear it?

Biron. A toy, my liege, a toy: your grace

needs not fear it.

Long. It did move him to passion, and there-

fore let’s hear it.

Dum. It is Biron’s writing, and here is his

name.                        [Picks up the pieces.

Biron. Ah, you whoreson loggerhead [to

COSTARD], you were born to do me


Guilty, my lord, guilty; I confess, I confess.

King. What?

Biron. That you three fools lack’d me fool

to make up the mess;

He, he, and you, my liege, and I,

Are pick-purses in love, and we deserve to die.

O, dismiss this audience, and I shall tell you


Dum. Now the number is even.

Biron.                  True, true; we are four:—

Will these turtles be gone?

King.                                  Hence, sirs, away.

Cost. Walk aside the true fold, and let the

trators stay.

[Exeunt COST. and JAQ.

Biron. Sweet lords, sweet lovers, O let us


As true we are as flesh and blood can be;

The sea will ebb and flow, heaven show his face;

Young blood will not obey and old decree:

We cannot cross the cause why we were born;

Therefore of all hands must we be forsworn.

King. What! did these rent lines show some

love of thine?

Biron. Did they, quoth you? Who sees the

heavenly Rosaline

That, like a rude and savage man of Inde

At the first opening of the gorgeous east,

Bows not his vassal head; and, strucken blind,

Kisses the base ground with obedient breast?

What peremptory eagle-sighted eye

Dares look upon the heaven of her brow,

That is not blinded by her majesty?

King. What zeal, what fury hath inspir’d

thee now?

My love, her mistress, is a gracious moon,

She an attending star, scare seen a light.

Biron. My eyes are then no eyes, nor I Biron:

O, but for my love, day would turn to night!

Of all complexions the cull’d sovereignty

Do meet, as at a fair, in her fair cheek;

Where several worthies make one dignity;

Where nothing wants that want itself doth


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ACT IV. SCENE II.—Another part of the Park.

love labours lost

Taken from the Complete Works of William Shakespeare

Love’s Labour’s Lost


ACT IV. SCENE II.—Another part of the Park.

And mark’d you both, and for you both did

blush.                                        [fashion;

I heard your guilty rhymes, observ’d your

Saw sighs reek from you, noted well your pas-


Ah me! says one; O Jove! the other cries;

One her hairs were gold , crystal the other’s


You would for paradise break faith and troth;


And Jove for your love would infringe an oath.


What will Biron say when that he shall hear

A faith infring’d which such a zeal did swear?

How will he scorn! how will he spend his wit!

How will he triumph, leap, and laugh at it!

For all the wealth that ever I did see

I would not have him know so much by me.

Biron. Now step I forth to whip hypocrisy.—

[Descends from the tree.

Ah, good my liege, I pray thee pardon me.

Good heart, what grace hast thou, thus to re-


These worms for loving, that art most in love?

Your eyes do make no coaches; in you your tears

There is no certain princess that appears:

You’ll not be perjur’d ’tis a hateful thing;

Tush, none but minstrels like of sonneting.

But are you not asham’d? nay, are you not,

All three of you, to be thus much o’ershot?

You found his mote; the king your mote did see;

But I a beam do find in each of three.

O, what a scene of foolery I have seen,

Of sighs, of groans, of sorrow, and of teen!

O me, with what strict patience have I sate

To see a king transformed to a gnat!

To see great Hercules whipping a gig,

And profound Solomon tuning a jig,

And Nestor play at push-pin with the boys,

And critic Timon laugh at idle toys!

Where lies thy grief, O, tell me, good Dumain?

And, gentle Longaville, where lies thy pain?

And where my liege’s all about the breast:—

A caudle, ho!

King.             Too bitter is thy jest.

Are we betray’d thus to thy over-view?

Biron. Not you to me, but I betray’d by you:

I, that am honest; I, that hold it sin

To break the vow I am engaged in;

I am betray’d by keeping company

With moon-like men of strange inconstancy.

When shall you see me write a thing in rhyme:

Or groan for Joan? or spend a minute’s time

In pruning me? When shall you hear that I

Will praise a hand, a foot, a face, an eye,

A gait, a state, a brow, a breast, a waist,

A leg, a limb?—

King.                 Soft! whither away so fast?

A true man or a thief that gallops so?

Biron. I post from love; good lover, let me


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ACT IV. SCENE II.—Another part of the Park.

love labours lost

Taken from the Complete Works of William Shakespeare

Love’s Labour’s Lost


ACT IV. SCENE II.—Another part of the Park.

Enter DUMAIN, with a paper.

Dumain transform’d: four woodcocks in a dish!

Dum. O most divine Kate!

Biron.                   O most profane coxcomb!


Dum. By heaven, the wonder of a mortal eye!

Biron. By earth, she is but corporal: there

you lie.                                         [Aside.]

Dum. Her amber hairs for foul have amber


Biron. An amber-colour’d raven was well

noted.                                         [Aside.]

Dum. As upright as the cedar.

Biron.                                  Stoop, I say;

Her shoulder is with child.               [Aside.]

Dum.                               As fair as day.

Biron. Ay, as some days; but then no sun

must shine.                                   [Aside.]

Drum. O that I had my wish!

Long.                              And I had mine!


King. And I mine too, good Lord!


Biron. Amen, so I had mine: is not that a

good word?                                   [Aside.]

Dum. I would forget her; but a fever she

Reigns in my blood, and will remember’d be.

Biron. A fever in your blood? why, then


Would let her out in saucers: sweet misprison!


Dum. Once more I’ll read the ode that I 

have writ.

Biron. Once more I’ll mark how love can

vary wit.                                     [Aside.]

Dum. [reads.] On a day,—alack the day!

Love, whose month is ever May,

Spied a blossom passing fair

Playing in the wanton air:

Through the velvet leaves the wind

All unseen, can passage find;

That the lover, sic to death,

Wish’d himself the heaven’s breath.

Air, quoth he, thy cheeks may blow:

Air, would I might triumph so!

But, alack, my hand is sworn

Ne’er to pluck thee from thy thorn:

Vow, alak, for youth unmeet.

Do not call it sin in me

That I am forsworn for thee:

Thou for whom even Jove would swear

Juno but an Ethiope were;

And deny himself for Jove,

Turning mortal for thy love.—

This will I send; and something else more plain,

That shall express my true love’s fasting pain.

O, would the King, Biron, and Longaville,

Were lovers too! Ill, to example ill,

Would from my forehead wipe a perjur’d note

For none offend where all alike do dote.

Long. Dumain [advancing], thy love is far

from charity,

That in love’s grief desir’st society:

You may look pale, but I should blush, I know,

To be o’erheard and taken napping so.

King. Come, sir [advancing], you blush; as

his your case is such;

You chide at him, offending twice as much:

You do not love Maria; Longaville

Did never sonnet for her sake compile;

Nor never lay his wreathed arms athwart

His loving bosom, to keep down his heart.

I have been closely shrouded in this bush.

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ACT IV. SCENE II.—Another part of the Park.

love labours lost

Taken from the Complete Works of William Shakespeare

Love’s Labour’s Lost


ACT IV. SCENE II.—Another part of the Park.


Jaq. God give you good-morrow, master


Hol. Master person,—quasi per-on. And if

one should be pierced, which is the one?

Cost. Marry, master schoolmaster, he that is

likest to a hogshead.

Hol. Of piercing a hogshead! a good lustre

of conceit in a turf of earth; fire enough for a

flint, pearl enough for a swine; ’tis pretty; it is


Jaq. Good master person, be so good as read

me this letter; it was given me by Costard, and

sent me from Don Armado: I beseech you,

read it.

Holfauste, precor gelidâ quando pecus omne

sub umbrâ                                         [tuan!

Ruminal,—and so forth. Ah, good old Man-

I may speak of thee as the traveller doth of


——Vinegia, Vinegia,

Chi non te vede, ei non te pregia.

Old Mantuan! old Mantuan! who understand-

eth thee not, loves thee not?—Ut, re, sol, la, mi,

fa.—Under pardon, sir, what are the contents?

or rather, as Horace says in his—What, my

suls, verses?

Nath. Ay, sir, and very learned.

Hol. Let me hear a staff, a stanza, a verse;

Lege, domine.

Nath. [reads.] If love make me forsworn,

how shall I swear to love?          [vow’d!

Ah, never faith could hold if not to beauty

Though to myself forsworn, to thee I’ll faith-

ful prove;

Those thoughts to me were oaks, to thee

like osiers bow’d.

Study his bias leaves, and makes his book

thine eyes;

Where all those pleasures live that art

would comprehend:

If knowledge be the mark, to know thee shall

suffice;                              [thee commend:

Well learned is that tongue that well can

All ignorant that soul that sees thee without


Which is to me some raise that I thy

parts admire,—

Biron. Why, he comes in like a perjure,

wearing papers.                        [Aside.

King. In love, I hope: sweet fellowship in

shame!                                   [Aside.

Biron. One drunkard loves another of the

name.                                     [Aside.

Long. Am I the first that have been perjur’d


Biron. [aside.] I could put thee in comfort;

not by two that I know:

Thou mak’st the triumviry, the corner cap of


The shape of Love’s Tyburn that hangs up


Long. I fear these stubborn lines lack power

to move:—

O sweet Maria, empress of my love!

These numbers will I tear and write in prose.

Biron. [aside.] O, rhymes are guards on

wanton Cupid’s hose:

Disfigure not his slop.

Long.                         This same shall go.—

[He rads the sonnet.

Did not the heavenly rhetoric of thine eye,—

‘Gainst whom the world cannot hold argu


Persuade my heart to this false perjury?

Vows for thee broke deserve not punishment.

A woman I forswore: I will prove,

Thou being a goddess, I forswore not thee;

My vow was earthly, thou a heavenly love;

Thy grace being gain’d cures all disgrace in me.

Vows are but breath, and breath a vapour is:

Then thou, fair sun, which on my earth dost


Exhal’st this vapour vow; in thee it is:

If broken, then it is no fault of mine:

If by me broke, what fool is not so wise

To lose an oath to win a paradise?

Biron. [aside.] This is the liver vein, which

makes flesh a deity,

A green goose a goddess: pure, pure idolatry.

God amend us, God amend! we are much out

o’ the way.

Long. By whom shall I send this?—Com-

pany! stay.                     [Stepping aside.

Biron.  [aside.] All hid, all hid, and old infant


Like a demi-god here sit I in the sky,

And wretched fools’ secrets heedfully o’er-eye.

More sacks to the mill! O heavens, I have my


(On 11/19/14 - Join me for the continuation of “Love’s Labour’s Lost”,

ACT IV. SCENE II.—Another part of the Park.

love labours lost

Taken from the Complete Works of William Shakespeare

Love’s Labour’s Lost


ACT IV. SCENE II.—Another part of the Park.


Nath. Very reverend sport, truly; and done in the testimony of a good conscience.

Hol. The deer was, as you know, sanguis,—

in blood; ripe as a pomewater, whom now hand-

eth like a jewel in the ear of cœlo,—the sky, the

welkin, the heaven; and anon falleth like a crab

on the face of  terra,—the soil, the land, the


Nath. Truly, Master Holofernes, the epithets

are sweetly varied, like a scholar at the least:

but, sir, I assure ye it was a buck of the first


Hol. Sir Nathaniel, haud credo.

Dull. ‘Twas not a haud credo; ’twas a pricket.

Hol. Most barbarous intimation! yet a kind

of insinuation, as it were, in via, in way, of

explication; facere, as it were, replication, or,

rather,  ostentare, to show, as it were, his inclina-

tion,—after his undressed, unpolished, undedu-

cated, unpruned, untrained, or, rather, unlet-

tered, or, ratherest, unconfirmed fashion,—to

insert again my haud credo for a deer.

Dull. I said the deer was not a haud credo;

’twas a pricket.

Hol. Twice sod simplicity, bis coclus!—

O thou monster Ignorance, how deformed dost

thou look!

Nath. Sir, he hath never fed of the dainties

that are bred in a book;

He hath not eat paper, as it were; he hath not

drunk ink; his intellect is not replenished; he

is only an animal only sensible in the duller


And such barren plants are set before us that

we thankful should be,—

Which we of taste and feeling are,—for those

parts that do fructify in us more than he.

For as it would ill become me to be vain, in-

discreet, or a fool,

So, were there a patch set on learning, to see

him in a school:

But, omne, bene, say I; being of an old father’s

mind,                                                    [wind.

Many can brook the weather that love not the

Dull. You two are book-men: can you tell

by your wit.

What was a month old at Cain’s birth that’s

not five weeks old as yet?

Hol. Dictynna, good man Dull; Dictynna,

good man Dull.

Dull. What is Dictynna?

Nath. A title to Phœbe, to Luna, to the


Hol. The moon was a month old when Adam

was no more,                             [five-score.

And raught not to five weeks when he came to

The allusion holds in the exchange.

Dull. And I say the pollusion holds in the

exchange; for the moon is never but a month

old: and I say beside, that ’twas a pricket that

the princess killed.

Hol. Sir Nathaniel, will you hear an extem-

poral epitaph on the death of the deer? and, to

humour the ignorant, I have called the deer the

princess killed a pricket.

Nath. Perge, good Master Holofernes,  perge;

so it shall please you to abrogate scurrility.

Hol. I will something affect the letter; for it

argues facility.

The praiseful princess pierc’d and prick’d a

pretty pleasing pricket;

Some say a sore; but not  a sore; till now

made sore with shooting.

The dogs did yell; put I to sore, then sorel

jumps from thicket;                  [a-hooting.

Or pricket, sore, or else sorel; the people fall

If sore be sore, then I to sore makes fifty sores;

O sore I!                                       [one more I.

Of one sore I an hundred make by adding but

Nath. A rare talent!

Dull. If a talent be a claw, look how he

claws him with a talent.

Hol. This is a gift that I have, simple, sim-

ple; a foolish extravagant spirit, full of forms,

figures, shapes, objects, ideas, apprehensions,

motions, revolutions: these are begot in the

ventricle of memory, nourished in the womb of

pia mater, and delivered upon the mellowing

of occasion. But the gift is good in those in

whom it is acute, and I am thankful for it.

Nath. Sir, I praise the Lord for you; and so

may my parishioners; for their sons are well

tutored by you, and their daughters profit very

greatly under you: you are a good member of

the commonwealth.

Hol. Meherclè, if their sons be ingenious,

they shall want no instruction: if their daugh-

ters be capable, I will put it to them: but, vir

sapit-qui pauca loquitur: a soul feminine salut-

eth us.

(On 11/18/14 - Join me for the continuation of “Love’s Labour’s Lost”,

ACT IV. SCENE II.—Another part of the Park.

love labours lost

Taken from the Complete Works of William Shakespeare

Love’s Labour’s Lost


ACT IV. SCENE I.—A part of the Park.

Thine in the dearest design of industry,


Thus dost thou hear the Nemean lion roar

‘Gainst thee, thou lamb, that standest as his prey;

Submissive fall his princely feet before,

And he from forage will incline to play:

But if thou strive, poor soul, what art thou


Food for his rage, repasture for his den.

Prin. What plume of feathers is he that in-

dited this letter?

What vane? what weather-cock? did you ever

hear better?

Boyet. I am much deceiv’d but I remember

the style.

Prin. Else your memory is bad, going o’er it


Boyet. This Armado is a Spaniard, that keeps

here in court;                                      [sport

A phantasm, a Monarcho, and one that makes

To the prince and his book-mates.

Prin.                              Thou fellow, a word:

Who gave thee this letter?

Cost.                             I told you; my lord:

Prin. To whom shouldst thou give it?

Cost.                 From my lord to my lady.

Prin. From which lord to which lady?

Cost. From my Lord Biron, a good master of


To a lady of France that he call’d Rosaline.

Prin. Thou hast mistaken this letter. Come,

lords, away.

Here, sweet, put up this; ’twill be thine another

day.                   [Exeunt PRINCESS and Train.

Boyet. Who is the shooter? who is the shooter?

Ros. Shall I teach you to know?

Boyet. Ay, my continent of beauty.

Ros.              Why, she that bears the bow.

Finely put off!                         [thou marry,

Boyet. My lady goes to kill horns; but, if

Hang me by the neck if horns that year mis-


Finely put on!

Ros. Well then, I am the shooter.

Boyet.                     And who is your deer?

Ros. If we choose by the horns, yourself:

come near.

Finely put on indeed!—

Mar. You still wrangle with her, Boyet, and

she strikes at the brow.              [her now?

Boyet. But she herself is hit lower: have I hit

Ros. Shall I come upon thee with an old say-

ing, that was a man when King Pepin of France

was a little boy, as touching the hit it?

Boyet. So I may answer thee with one as old,

that was a woman when Queen Guinever of

Britain was a little wench, as touching the hit it.


Ros. Thou canst not hit it, hit it, hit it.

        Thou canst not hit it, my good man.

Boyet. An I cannot, cannot, cannot,

An I cannot, another can.

[Exeunt Ros, and KATH.

Cost. By my troth, most pleasant! how both

did fit it!

Mar. A mark marvellous well shot; for they

both did hit it.

Boyet. A mark! O, mark but that mark! A

mark, says my lady!                  [may be.

Let the mark have a prick in’t, to mete at, if it

Mar. Wide o’ the bow-hand! I’ faith your

hand is out.

Cast. Indeed, a’ must shoot nearer, or he’ll

ne’er hit the clout.

Boyet. And if my hand be out, then belike

your hand is in.                     [ing the pin.

Cost. Then will she get the upshot by cleav-

Mar. Come, come, you talk greasily, your

lips grow foul.

Cost. She’s too hard for you at pricks, sir;

challenge her to bowl.

Boyet. I fear too much rubbing; good-night,

my good owl.

[Exeunt BOYET and MARIA.

Cost. By my soul, a swain! a most simple

clown!                                          [down!

Lord, lord! how the ladies and I have put him

O’ my troth, most sweet jests! most incony

vulgar wit!

When it comes so smoothly off, so obscenely, as

it were, so fit.

Armador o’ the one side,—O, a most dainty

man!                                                  [fan!

To see him walk before a lady and to bear her

To see him kiss his hand! and how most sweetly

‘a will swearl—

And his page o’ t’ other side, that handful of


Ah, heavens, it is a most pathetical nit!

Sola, sola!                            [Shouting within.

[Exit COSTARD running.

(On 11/17/14 - Join me for the continuation of “Love’s Labour’s Lost”,

ACT IV. SCENE II.—Another part of the Park.

love labours lost

Taken from the Complete Works of William Shakespeare

Love’s Labour’s Lost


ACT IV. SCENE I.—A part of the Park.


Cost. God dig-you-den all! Pray you, which is

the head-lady?                [that have no heads.

Prin. Thou shalt know her, fellow, by the rest

Cost. Which is the greatest lady, the highest?

Prin. The thickest and the tallest.

Cost. The thickest and the tallest! it is so:

truth is truth,                                     [wut,

An your waist, mistress, were as slender as my

One of these maids’ girdles for your waist should

be fit.                                                [est here.

Are not you the chief woman? you are the thick-

Prin. What’s your will, sir? what’s your will?

Cost. I have a letter from Monsieur Biron, to

oe Lady Rosaline.

Prin. O, thy letter, thy letter; he’s a good

friend of mine:                            [carve;

Stand aside, good bearer.—Boyet you can

Break up this capon.

Boyet.                     I a bound to serve.—

This letter is mistook, it importeth none here;

It is writ to Jaquenetta.

Prin.                         We will read it, I swear:

Break the neck of the wax and every one give


Boyet. [reads.] By heaven, that thou are fair is

most infallible; true that thou art beauteous;

truth itself that thou art lovely. More fairer

than fair, beautiful than beauteous, truer than

truth itself: have commiseration on thy hero-

ical vassall! The magnanimous and most illus-

trious king Cophetua set eye upon the pernicious

and indubitate beggar Zenelophon; and he it

was that might rightly say veni, vidi, vici; which

to anatomize in the vulgar,—O base and ob-

scure vulgar!—videlicet, he came, saw, and over-

came: he came one; saw two; overcame three.

Who came? the king: why did he come? to see:

why did he see? to overcome: to whom came

he? to the beggar: what saw he? the beggar:

who overcame he? the beggar. The conclusion

is victory; on whose side? the beggar’s:

tive is enriched; on whose side? the beggars:

the catastrophe is a nuptial; on whose side? the

king’s?—no on both in one, or one in both. I

am the king; for so stands the comparison: thou

the beggar; for so witnesseth thy lowliness.

Shall I command thy love? I may: shall I en-

force thy love? I could: shall I entreat thy love?

I will. What shalt thou exchange for rags?

robes: for titles? titles: for thyself? me. Thus,

expecting thy reply, I profane my lips on thy

foot, my eyes on thy picture, and my heart on

thy every part.

(On 11/16/14 - Join me for the continuation of “Love’s Labour’s Lost”,

ACT IV. SCENE I.—A part of the Park.

love labours lost