Taken from the Complete Works of William Shakespeare
Love’s Labour’s Lost
ACT V. SCENE I.—Another part of the Park.
Prin. Saint Dennis to Saint Cupid! What
are they [say.
That charge their breath against us? say, scout,
Boyet. Under the cool shade of a sycamore
I thought to close mine eyes some halfe an hour;
When, lo! to interrupt my purpos’d rest,
Toward that shade I might behold addrest
The king and his companions: warily
I stole into a neighbour thicket by,
And overheard what you shall overhear,
That, by and by, disguis’d they will be here.
Their herald is a pretty knavish page,
That well by heart hath conn’d his embassage:
Action and accent did they teach him there;
Thus must thou speak and thus thy body bear:
And ever and anon they made a doubt
Presence majestical would put him out;
For, quoth the king, an angel shall thou see,
Yet fear not thou, but speak audaciously.
The boy reply’d, An angel is not evil;
I should have fear’d her had she been a devil.
With that all laugh’d, and clapp’d him on the
Making the bold wag, by their praises bolder.
One rubb’d his elbow, thus, and fleer’d, and
A better speech was never spoke before:
Another with his finger an his thumb
Cried, Vial we will do’t come what will come:
The third he caper’d, an cried, All goes well.
The fourth turn’d on the toe, and down he fell,
With such a zealous laughter, so profound,
That in this spleen ridiculous appears,
To check their folly, passion’s solemn tears.
Prin. But what, but what, come they to
visit us? [thus,—
Boyet. They do, they do; and are apparel’d
Like Muscovites, or Russians, as I guess;
Their purpose is to parle, to court, and dance;
And every one his love-suit will advance
Unto his several mistress; which they’ll know
By favours several which they did bestow.
Prin. And will they so? the gallants shall be
For, ladies, we will every one be mask’d;
And not a man of them shall have the grace,
Despite of suit, to see a lady’s face.—
Hold, Rosaline, this favour thou shalt wear;
And then the king will court thee for his dear;
Hold, take thou this, my sweet, and give me
So shall Birón take me for Rosaline.—
And change your favours too; so shall your
Woo contrary, deceiv’d by these removes.
(On 11/29/14 – Join me for the continuation of “Love’s Labour’s Lost”,
ACT V. SCENE II.—Another part of the Park.