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THESEUS, Duke of Athens. Egeus, Father to Hermia. DEMETRIUS, Žin love with Hermia. PHILOSTRATE, Master of the Revels to Theseus. QUINCE, the Carpenter. SNUG, the Joiner. BOTTOM, the wearer. FLUTE, the Bellows-mender. SNOUT, the Tinker. STARVELING, the Tailor. HIPPOLYTA, Queen of the Amazons, betrothed
to Theseus. HERMIA, Daughter to Egeus, in love with
HELENA, in love with Demetrius.
OBERON, Ring of the Fairies.
TITANIA, Queen of the Fairies.
Puck, or ROBIN-COODPELLOW, a Fairy
Characters in the Interlude
performed by the Clowns. Lion, Other Fairies attending their King and Queen.
Attendants on Theseus and Hippolyta. SCENE, -Athens, and a Wood net far from it."
SCENE I.-Athens. A Room in the Palace of Theseus.
Enter THESEUS, HIPPOLYTA, PHILO-
STRATE, and Attendants.
The. Now, fair Hippolyta, our nuptial hour
Draws on apace; four happy days bring in
Another moon; but, oh, methinks, how slow
This old moon wanes ! she lingers my desires,
Like to a step-dame, or a dowager,
out a young man's revenue.
Hip. Four days will quickly steep themselves in
Four nights will quickly dream away the time;
And then the moon, like to a silver bow
New bent in heaven, shall behold the night
Of our solemnities.
Stir up the Athenian youth to merriments;
Awake the pert and nimble spirit of mirth;
Turn melancholy forth to funerals,
The pale companion is not for our pomp-
Hippolyta, I woo'd thee with my sword,
And won thy love, doing thee injuries;
But I will wed thee in another key,
With pomp, with triumph, and with revelling.
Enter EGEUS, HERMIA, LYSANDER, and
Ege. Happy be Theseus, our renowned duke!
The. Thanks, good Egeus: What's the news with
Ege. Full of vexation come I, with complaint
Against my child, my daughter Hermia.-
Stand forth, Demetrias ;-my noble lord,
This man hath my consent to marry her.
Stand forth, Lysander ;-and, my gracious duke,
This hath bewitch'd the bosom of my child:
Thou, thou, Lysander, thou hast given her rhymes
And interchanged love-tokens with my child;
With feigning voice, verses of reigning love;
And stolen the impression of her fantasy
With bracelets of thy hair, rings, gawds, conceits,
Knacks, trides, nosegays, sweetmeats, -messengers
or strong prevailment in unharden'd youth ;,
With cunning hast thou flch'd my daughter's heart ;
Turn'd her obedience, which is due to me,
To stubborn harshness. And, my gracious duke,
Be it so she will not here before your greco
Consent to marry with Demetrius,
I beg the
ancient privilege of Athens : As she is mine, 1 may dispose
of her Which shall be either to this gentleman, Or to her death ; according to our law, Immediately provided in that case.
The. What say you, Hermia ? be advised, fair maid To you your father should be as a god; One that composed your beauties; yea, and one To whom you are but as a form in wax, By him imprinted, and within his power To leave the figure, or disfigure it. Demetrius is a worthy gentleman.
Scene I. MIDSUMMER-NIGHT'S DREAM. 5 The.
he is :
But, in this kind, wanting your father's voice,
The other must be held the worthier.
Her. I would my father look'd but with my eyes.
The. Rather your eyes must with his judgment look.
Her. I do entreat your grace to pardon me.
I know not by what power I am made bold,
Nor how it may concern my modesty
In such a presence here to plead my thoughts :
But I beseech your grace, that I may know
The worst that may befall me in this case,
If I refuse to wed Demetrius.
The. Either to die the death, or to abjure
Por ever the society of men.
Therefore, fair Hermia, question your desires,
Know of your youth, examine well your blood,
Whether, if you yield not to your father's choice,
You can endure the livery of a nun:
For aye to be in shady cloister mew'd,
To live a barren sister all your life,
Chanting faint hymns to the cold fruitless moon.
Thrice blessed they, that master so their blood,
To undergo such maiden pilgrimage:
But earthlier happy is the rose distilla,
Than that which, withering on the virgin thorn,
Grows, lives, and dies, in single blessedness.
Her. So will I grow, so live, so die, my lord,
Ere I will yield my virgin patent up
Unto his lordship, to whose unwish'd yoke
My soul consents not to give sovereignty.
The. Take time to pause; and, by the next new moon,
(The sealing-day betwixt my love and me,
For everlasting bond of fellowship)
Upon that day either prepare to die,
Por disobedience to your father's will;
Or else, to wed Denietrius, as he would ;
Or on Diana's altar to protest,
For aye, austerity and single life.
Dem. Relent, sweet Hermia ; -and, Lysander, yield Thy crazéd title to my certain right.
Lys. You have her father's love, Demetrius;
Let me have Herniia's: do you marry him.
Ege. Scornful Lysander truc, he hath my love ;
And what is mine my love shall render him ;
And she is mine; and all my right of her
I do estate unto Demetrius.
Lys. I am, my lord, as well derived as he,
As well possess'; my love is more than his;