Page images
PDF
EPUB

Rom. O, let us hence; I stand on sudden haste.

Fri. Wisely, and slow; they stumble that run fast.

SCENE IV.-A Street.

Enter BENVOLIO, and MERCUTIO.

Mer. Where should this Romeo be ?

Came he not home to-night?

Ben. Not to his father's; I spoke with his man.

Mer. Ah, that same pale hard-hearted girl, that Rosaline, Torments him so, that he will sure run mad.

Ben. Tybalt, the kinsman of old Capulet,

Hath sent a letter to his father's house.

Mer. A challenge, on my life.

Ben. Romeo will answer it.

Mer. Any man that can write, may answer a letter.

[Exeunt.

Ben. Nay, he will answer the letter's master, how he dares, being dared.

Mer. Alas, poor Romeo, he is already dead! shot thorough the ear with a love-song; the very pin of his heart cleft with the blind bow-boy's butt-shaft; And is he a man to encounter Tybalt?

Ben. Why, what is Tybalt?

Mer. More than prince of cats, I can tell you. O, he is the courageous captain of compliments. He fights as you sing, keeps time, distance, and proportion; rests me his minim rest, one, two, and the third in your bosom; the very butcher of a silk button, a duellist, a gentleman of the very first house,-of the first and second cause: Ah, the immortal passado! the punto reverso! the hay! Ben. The what?

Mer. The plague of such antic, lisping, affecting fantasticoes; these new tuners of accents!-Ma foi, a very good blade!—a very tall man!—a very fine girl!—Why, is not this a lamentable thing, grandsire, that we should be thus afflicted with these strange flies, these fashion-mongers, these pardonnez-moys ?

Enter ROMEO.

Ben. Here comes Romeo, here comes Romeo.

Mer. Without his roe, like a dried herring. Signior Romeo, bon jour! there's a French salutation for you.

Rom. Good-morrow to you both.

Mer. You gave us the counterfeit last night.

Rom. What counterfeit did I give you?

Mer. The slip, sir, the slip; Can you not receive?

Rom. Pardon, good Mercutio, my business was great; and, in

such case as mine, a man may strain courtesy.

Nurse. Peter!

Peter. Anon?

Enter Nurse, and PETER.

Nurse. My fan, Peter.

Mer. Pr'ythee, do, good Peter, to hide her face; for her fan's the fairer of the two.

Nurse. Give ye good-morrow, gentlemen.

Mer. Give ye good den, fair gentlewoman.

Nurse. Gentlemen, can any of you tell me where I may find the young Romeo ?

Rom. I am the youngest of that name, for fault of a worse.

Nurse. You say well. If you be he, sir, I desire some confidence with you.

Mer. Romeo, will you come to your father's ?-we'll to dinner thither.

Rom. I will follow you.

Mer. Farewell, ancient lady; farewell.

[Exeunt MERCUTIO, and BENVOLIO. Nurse. Marry, farewell!-I pray you, sir, what saucy merchant was this, that was so full of his roguery?

Rom. A gentleman, nurse, that loves to hear himself talk; and will speak more in a minute, than he will stand to in a month.

Nurse. An 'a speak any thing against me, I'll take him down.Pray you, sir, a word: and as I told you, my young lady bade me inquire you out; what she bade me say, I will keep to myself: but first let me tell ye, if ye should lead her into fool's paradise, as they say, it were a very gross kind of behavior, as they say for the gentlewoman is young; and, therefore, if you should deal double with her, truly, it were an ill thing to be offered to any gentlewoman, and very weak dealing.

Rom. Nurse, commend me to thy lady and mistress. I protest unto thee,

Nurse. Good heart! and, i' faith, I will tell her as much: oh, she will be a joyful woman.

Rom. What wilt thou tell her, nurse? thou dost not mark me. Nurse. I will tell her, sir,-that you do protest; which, as I take it, is a gentlemanlike offer.

Rom. Bid her devise some means to come to shrift

This afternoon;

And there she shall at friar Laurence' cell

Be shriv'd, and married. Here is for thy pains.

Nurse. This afternoon, sir? well, she shall be there.

Nurse. No, truly, sir; not a penny.

Rom. Go to; I say, you shall.

Rom. Farewell!-Commend me to thy lady.

Nurse. Ay, a thousand times.-Peter!

Peter. Anon?

Nurse. Peter, take my fan, and go before.

[Exit.

[Exeunt.

SCENE V.-Capulet's Garden.

Enter JULIET.

Jul. The clock struck nine, when I did send the nurse;
In half an hour she promis'd to return.

Perchance, she cannot meet him :-that's not so.-
O, she is lame! love's heralds should be thoughts,
Which ten times faster glide than the sun's beams.
Now is the sun upon the highmost hill

Of this day's journey; and from nine till twelve
Is three long hours,-yet she is not come.
Had she affections, and warm youthful blood,
She'd be as swift in motion as a ball.

Enter Nurse.

O, she comes!-O honey nurse, what news?
Now, good sweet nurse,-O! why look'st thou so sad?
Though news be sad, yet tell them merrily ;-
If good, thou sham'st the music of sweet news
By playing it to me with so sour a face.

Nurse. I am aweary, give me leave a while;

Fye, how my bones ache! What a jaunt have I had!
Jul. I would, thou hadst my bones, and I thy news:
Nay, come, I pray thee, speak ;-good, good nurse, speak.
Nurse. What haste? can you not stay a while?

Do you not see, that I am out of breath?

Jul. How art thou out of breath, when thou hast breath To say to me that thou art out of breath?

The excuse, that thou dost make in this delay,

Is longer than the tale thou dost excuse.

Is thy news good, or bad? answer to that;
Say either, and I'll stay the circumstance:
Let me be satisfied, Is't good or bad?

Nurse. Well, you have made a simple choice; you know not how to choose a man.-Go thy ways, girl; serve Heaven.-What, have you dined at home?

Jul. No, no: But all this did I know before;

What says he of our marriage? what of that?

Nurse. Oh, how my head aches! what a head have I!

It beats as it would fall in twenty pieces.—

Beshrew your heart, for sending me about,

To catch my death with jaunting up and down?
Jul. I' faith, I am sorry that thou art not well:

Sweet, sweet, sweet nurse, tell me, what says my love?
Nurse. Your love says like an honest gentleman,
And a courteous, and a kind, and a handsome,
And, I warrant, a virtuous :-Where is your mother?
Jul. Where is my mother ?-why, she is within;

Where should she be?

How oddly thou reply'st?

Your love says like an honest gentleman,—
Where is your mother?

Nurse,

Marry, come up, I trow;
Is this the poultice for my aching bones?
Henceforward do your messages yourself.

Jul. Here's such a coil.-Come, what says Romeo?
Nurse. Have you got leave to go to shrift to-day?
Jul. I have.

Nurse. Then hie you hence to friar Laurence' cell,
There stays a husband to make you a wife.
Go; I'll to dinner: hie you to the cell.

Jul. Hie to high fortune !-honest nurse, farewell.

SCENE VI.-Friar Laurence's Cell.

Enter Friar LAURENCE, and ROMEO.

Fri. So smile the heavens upon this holy act,
That after-hours with sorrow chide us not!

Rom. Amen, amen! but come what sorrow can,
It cannot countervail the exchange of joy
That one short minute gives me in her sight:
Do thou but close our hands with holy words,
Then love-devouring death do what he dare,
It is enough I may but call her mine.

Fri. These violent delights have violent ends,
And in their triumph die; like fire and powder,
Which, as they kiss, consume: The sweetest honey
Is loathsome in his own deliciousness,

And in the taste confounds the appetite:
Therefore, love moderately; long love doth so;
Too swift arrives as tardy as too slow.

Enter JULIET.

Here comes the lady;-O, so light a foot
Will ne'er wear out the everlasting flint:
A lover may bestride the gossamers
That idle in the wanton summer air,
And yet not fall; so light is vanity.

Jul. Good even to my ghostly confessor.

Fri. Romeo shall thank thee, daughter, for us both.
Jul. As much to him, else are his thanks too much.
Rom. Ah, Juliet, if the measure of thy joy

Be heap'd like mine, and that thy skill be more
To blazon it, then sweeten with thy breath
This neighbor air, and let rich music's tongue
Unfold the imagin'd happiness that both
Receive in either by this dear encounter.

Jul. Conceit, more rich in matter than in words,

[Exeunt.

Brags of his substance, not of ornament:

They are but beggars that can count their worth;

But my true love is grown to such excess,

I cannot sum up half my sum of wealth.

Fri. Come, come with me, and we will make short work; For, by your leaves, you shall not stay alone,

Till holy church incorporate two in one.

ACT III.

[Exeunt.

Tybalt, indignant at Romeo's intrusion at Capulet's feast, seeks occasion to quarrel with him; Romeo refuses to fight,-Mercutio challenges Tybalt and falls in the encounter. Romeo avenges his death by slaying Tybalt, and is condemned by the Duke to perpetual banishment from Verona.

SCENE II.—A Room in Capulet's House.
Enter JULIET.

Jul. Gallop apace, you fiery-footed steeds,
Towards Phoebus' mansion; such a wagoner
As Phaton would whip you to the west,
And bring in cloudy night immediately.—
Give me my Romeo: and, when he shall die,
Take him and cut him out in little stars,
And he will make the face of heaven so fine,
That all the world will be in love with night,
And pay no worship to the garish sun.

O, here comes my nurse,

Enter Nurse.

And she brings news; and every tongue that speaks
But Romeo's name, speaks heavenly eloquence.-

Now, nurse, what news?

Ah me! why dost thou wring thy hands?

Nurse. Ah well-a-day! he's dead, he's dead, he's dead!

We are undone, lady, we are undone !—

Alack the day!-he's gone, he's kill'd, he's dead!
Jul. Can heaven be so envious?

Nurse.

Romeo can,

Though heaven cannot :-O Romeo, Romeo!

Whoever would have thought it ?-Romeo!

Jul. What demon art thou, that dost torment me thus ? Hath Romeo slain himself? say thou but ay,

And that bare little word shall poison more

Than the death-darting eye of cockatrice.

Nurse. I saw the wound, I saw it with mine eyes,

A piteous corse, a bloody piteous corse;

Pale, pale as ashes;-I swooned at the sight.

Jul. O break, my heart!--poor bankrupt, break at once! To prison, eyes! ne'er look on liberty!

« PreviousContinue »