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1. Pedro. She were an excellent wife for Benedick.
Lcon. O lord, my lord, if they were but a week marriel, they would talk themselves mad.
D. Pedro. Count Claudio, when mean you to go to church P
Claud. To-morrow, my lord : Time goes on crutches, till love have all his rites.
Leont. Noi till Monday, my dear son, which is hence a just seven-night: and a time too brief too, to hare all things answer my mind.
1 Pedro. Come, you shake the head at so long a breathing; but I warrant thee, Claudio, the time shall pot go dully by us; I will, in the interim, undertake one of Hercules' labours; which is, to bring signior Bevestick and the lady Beatrice into a mountain of affection, the one with the other. I would rain have it a match; and I doubt not but to lashıon it, if you three will hut minister such assistance as I shall give you directicn.
Leon. My lord, I am for you, though cost me ten nighs' watchings.
Claud. And I, my lord.
Ilero. I will do any modest office, my lord, to help my cousin to a good husband.
D. Pedro. And Benedick is not the unho efullest husband that I know : thus far can I praise him : he is of a noble strain, of approved valour, and confirmed honesty. I will teach you how to humour your cousin, that she shall fall in love with Benedick :--and I, with your two helps, will so practise on Benedick, that, in despite of his quick wit and his queasy stomach, he shall fall in love with Beatrice. ir we can do this, Cupid is no longer an archer; his glory shall be ours, for we are the only love-gods. Go in with me, and I will tell you my drift,
SCENE II.-- Another Room in Leonato's House.
Enter DON JOHN and BORACHIO. D. John. It is so; the count Claudio shall marry the daughter of Leonato.
Bora. Yea, my lord, but I can cross it. D. John. Any bar, any cross, any impediment will be medicinal to me: I am sick in displeasure to him; and whatsoever comes athwart his affection, ranges evenly with mine. How canst thou cross this marriage ?
Bora. Not honestly, my lord; but to covertly, that
D. John. Shew me briefly how
I am in the favour of Margaret, the waiting gentlewoman to Hero.
D. John. I remember.
Bora. I can, at ang unseasonable instant of the night, appoint her to look out at her lady's chamber-window. D. John. What life is in that to be the death of this
The poison of that lies in you to temper. Go you to the prince your brother; spare not to tell hini, that he hath wronged his honour in marrying the renowned Claudio (whose estimation do you mightily hold up to a contaminated stale, such a ove as Hero.
D. John. What proof shall I make of that? Bora. Proof enough to misuse the prince, to vex Claudio, to undo Hero, and kill Leonato: Look you for any other issue !
D. John. Only to despite then, I will endeavour any Bora. Go then, find me a meet hour to draw Don Pedro and the count Claudio, alone : tell them, that you know that Hero loves me; intend a kind of zeal both to the prince and Claudio, as - in love of your brother's honour, who hath made this match, and his friend's reputation, who is thus like to be cozened with thus. They will scarcely
believe this without trial: offer them instances ; which shall bear no less
me at her chamber-window; hear me cali Margaret. Hero; hear Margaret term me Borachio: and intended
wedding : for, in the mean time, I will ** there shall appear such seeming truth of Hero's dis.
that Jealousy shall be calld assurance, and all the preparation overthrown.
D. John. Grow this to what adverse issue it can, 1 will put it in practice : Be cunning in the working this,
and thy fee is a thousand ducats.
Bora. Be you constant in the accusation, and my eunning shall not shame me. marriage.
D. John. I will presently go learn their day or :
SCENE III.-Leonato's Garden,
Enter BENEDICK and a Boy.
Bene. In my chamber-window lies a book ; bring it hither to me in the orchard.
Boy. I am here already, sir.
Bene. I krow that, but I would have thee hence, and here again. (Erit Boy.]—I do much wonder, that one man, seeing how much another man is a fool when he dedicates his behaviours to love, will, after he hath laughed at such shallow follies in others, become the argument of his own scorn, by falling in love : Aud such a man is Claudio. I have known, when there was no inusic with him but the drum and bre; and now had he rather hear the tabor and the pipe: I hare known, when he would have walked ten mile a-foot, to see a good armour; and now will he lie ten nights awake, carving the fashion of a new doublet. He was wont to speak plain, and to the purpose, like an honest man, and a soldier; and now is he turned orthographer; his words are a very fantastical banquet, just so many strange dishes. May I be so converted, and see with these cyes? I cannot tell; I think not: I will not be sworn, but love may transform me to an oyster ; but I'll take my oath on it, till he have made all oyster of me, be shall never make me such a fool. One woman is fair, yet I am well; another is wise, yet I am well; another virtuous, yet I am well: but till all graces bo in one woman, one woman shall not come in my grace. Rich she shall be, that's certain ; wise, or I'll one ; virtuous, or I'll never cheapen her ; fair, or I'll never look on her; mild, or come not near me ; poble, or not I for an angel ; of good discourse, an excellent musician, and her hair shall be of what colour it please God. Ha ! the prince and monsieur Love! I will hide me in the arbour.
(Wilhdraws ) Enter Don PEDRO, LEONATO, and CLAUDIO. 1. Pedro. Come, shall we hear this music!
Claud. Yea, my good lord :- How still the evening
Enter BALTHAZAR, with music.
D. Pedro. It is the witness still of excellency,
Balth. Because you talk of wooing, I will sing :
Nay, pray thee, come:
Note this before my notes,
Men were deceivers ever;
Then sigh not so,
But let them go,
Then sigh not so, &c.
D. Pedro. Ha ? no, no, faith; thou singest well enough for a shift.
Bene. (Aside.) An he had been a dog, that should have howled thus, they would have hanged him: and ! pray God, this bad voice bode no mischier! I had as lief have heard the night-raven, come what plague could have come after it.
D. Pedro. Yea, marry; (lo Claudio.) -- Dost thou hear, Balthazar? I pray thee, get us some excellent music; for to-morrow night we would have it at the lady Hero's chamber-window.
Balth. The best I can, my lord.
D. Pedro. Do so: farewell. [Breunt Balthazar and music. Come hither, Leonato : What was it you told me to-day ? that your niece Beatrice was in love with signior Benedick?
Claud. O, ay. - Stalk on, stalk on: the fowl sits, (Aside to Pedro.) I did never think that lady would have loved any man.
Leon. No, nor I neither; but most wonderful, that she should so lote on signior Benedick, whom she hath in all outward behaviours seemed ever to abhor. Bene. Is 't possible ? Sits the wind in that corner ?
( Aside.) Leon. By my troth, my lord, I cannot tell what to think of it, but that she loves him with an enraged affection,-it is past the infinite of thought. D. Pedro. May be, she doth but counterfeit. Claud. 'Faith, like enough.
Leon. O Gou! counterfeit! There never was counterfeit of passion caine so near the life of passion, as she discovers it.
D. Pedro Why, what effects of passion shews she?
(Aside.) Leon. What effects, my lord! She will sit you, You heard my daughter tell you how.
Claud. She did, indeed.
D. Pedro. How, how, I pray you? You amaze me: I would have thought her spirit had been invincible against all assaults of affectioil.
Leon. I would have sworn it had, my lord; especially against Benedick,
Bene. (Asid..) I should think this a gull, but that the white-bearded fellow speaks it: koavery cannot, sure, hide itself in such reverence. Claud. Ho hath ta'en the infection ; hold it up.