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Swift as a shadow, short as any dream;
Brief as the lightning in the collied * night,
That, in a spleen, unfolds both heaven 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.

ASSIGNATION.
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 souls, and prospers loves ;
And by that fire which burn’d the Carthage queen,
When the false Trojan under sail 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.

THE MOON.

When Phoebe doth behold Her silver visage in the wat’ry glass, Decking with liquid pearl the bladed grass.

LOVE.

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 winged 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 is so oft beguil'd. As waygish boys in gamet themselves forswear, So the boy love is perjur'd every where.

PUCK.

I am thạt merry wanderer of the night, I jest to Oberon, and make him smile, When I a fat and bean-fed horse beguile, * Black.

+ Sport.

Neighing in likeness of a silly foal:
And sometime lurk I in a gossip's bowl,
In very likeness of a roasted crab *;
And, when she drinks, against her lips I bob,
And on her wither'd dew-lap pour the ale.
The wisest aunt, telling the saddest tale,
Sometime for three-foot stool mistaketh me ;
Then slip I from her bum, down topples she,
And tailor cries, and falls into a cough;
And then the whole quire hold their hips, and loffe ;
And waxen in their mirth, and neeze, and swear
A merrier hour was never wasted there.

FAIRY JEALOUSY, AND THE EFFECTS OF IT,
These are the forgeries of jealousy:
And never, since the middle summer's spring,
Met we on hill, in dale, forest, or mead,
By paved fountain, or by rushy brook,
Or on the beached margent of the sea,
To dance our ringlets to the whistling wind,
But with thy brawls thou hast disturb'd our sport.
Therefore the winds, piping to us in vain,
As in revenge, have suck'd up from the sea
Contagious fogs; which falling in the land,
Have every pelting † river made so proud,
That they have overborne their continents I;
The ox hath therefore stretch'd his yoke in vain,
The ploughman lost his sweat; and the green corn
Hath rotted, ere his youth attain'd a beard :
The fold stands empty in the drowned field,
And crows are fatted with the murrain flock;
The nine men's morris & is fill'd up with mud;
And the quaint mazes in the wanton green,
For lack of tread are undistinguishable;
The human mortals want their winter here;
No night is now with hymn or carol bless'd:-
Therefore the moon, the governess of floods,
Pale in her anger, washes all the air,

* Wild apple,
I Banks which contain them.

+ Petty.

game

played by boys.

G

That rheumatic diseases do abound:
And thorough this distemperature, we see
The seasons alter: hoary-headed frosts
Fall in the fresh lap of the crimson rose ;
And on old Hyems' cbin, and icy crown,
An odorous chaplet of sweet summer buds
Is, as in mockery, set: The spring, the summer,
The childing * autumn, angry winter, change
Their wonted liveries; and the 'mazed world,
By their increase t, now knows not which is which.

LOVE IN IDLENESS.

Thou remember'st Since once I sat upon a promontory, And heard a mermaid, on a dolphin's back, Uttering such dulcet and harmonious breath, That the rude sea grew civil at her song; And certain stars shot madly from their spheres, To hear the sea-maid's music. That very time I saw, (but thou could'st not,) Flying between the cold moon and the earth, Cupid all-arm’d: a certain aim he took At a fair vestal, throned by the west; And loos'd his love-shaft smartly from his bow, As it should pierce a hundred thousand hearts: But I might see young Cupid's fiery shaft Quench'd in the chaste beams of the watry moon; And the imperial votress passed on, In maiden meditation, fancy free 1. Yet mark'd I where the bolt of Cupid fell: It fell upon a little western flower, — Before, milk-white; now purple with love's wound, And maidens call it, love-in-idleness.

A FAIRY BANK.

I know a bank whereon the wild thyme blows, Where ox-lips and the nodding violet grows;

* Autumn producing flowers unseasonably. † Produce. # Exempt from love.

$ The greater cowslip.

Quite over-canopied with lush * woodbine, With sweet musk-roses, and with eglantine: There sleeps Titanja, some time of the night, Lulld in these flowers with dances and delight.

ACT III.

.

FAIRY COURTESIES. Be kind and courteous to this gentleman; Hop in his walks, and gambol in his eyes ; Feed him with apricocks and dewberries t, With purple grapes, green figs, and mulberries; The honey bags steal from the humble bees, And, for night tapers, crop their waxen thighs, And light them at the fiery glow-worm's eyes, To have my love to bed, and to arise ; And pluck the wings from painted butterflies, To fan the moon-beams from his sleeping eyes: Nod to bim, elves, and do him courtesies.

FEMALE FRIENDSHIP. Is all the counsel that we two have shar'd, The sisters' vows, the hours that we have spent, When we have chid the hasty-footed time For parting us,–0, and is all forgot? All school-days' friendship, childhood innocence? We, Hermia, like two artificial I gods, Have with our neelds © created both one flower, Both on one sampler, sitting on one cushion, Both warbling of one song, both in one key; As if our hands, our sides, voices, and minds, Had been incorporate. So we grew together, Like to a double cherry, seeming parted ; But yet a union in partition,

* Vigorous.
# Ingenious.

+ Gooseberries.

Needles.

Two lovely berries moulded on one stem:
So, with two seeming bodies, but one heart;
Two of the first, like coats in heraldry,
Due but to one, and crowned with one crest.
And will you rent our ancient love asunder,
To join with men in scorning your poor friend?
It is not friendly, 'tis not maidenly:
Our sex, as well as I, may chide you for it;
Though I alone do feel the injury.

DAYBREAK.

Night's swift dragons cut the clouds full fast, And yonder shines Aurora's harbinger; At whose approach, ghosts, wandering here and there, Troop home to church-yards.

ACT IV.

DEW IN FLOWERS. And that same dew, which sometime on the buds Was wont to swell, like round and orient pearls, Stood now within the pretty flow'rets' eyes, Like tears, that did their own disgrace bewail.

HUNTING.

We will, fair queen, up to the mountain's top,
And mark the musical confusion
Of hounds and echo in conjunction.

Hip. I was with Hercules, and Cadmus, once,
When in a wood of Crete they bay'd the bear
With hounds of Sparta: never did I hear
Such gallant chiding *; for, besides the groves,
The skies, the fountains, every region near
Seem'd all one mutual cry: I never heard
So musical a discord, such sweet thunder.

* Sound.

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