Puck. Captaine of our Fairy band, Helena is heere at hand, And the youth, mistooke by me, Pleading for a Louers fee. Shall we their fond Pageant see? Lord, what fooles these mortals be! Ob. Stand aside: the noyse they make, Will cause Demetrius to awake

Puck. Then will two at once wooe one, That must needs be sport alone: And those things doe best please me, That befall preposterously. Enter Lysander and Helena.

Lys. Why should you think y I should wooe in scorn? Scorne and derision neuer comes in teares: Looke when I vow I weepe; and vowes so borne, In their natiuity all truth appeares. How can these things in me, seeme scorne to you? Bearing the badge of faith to proue them true

Hel. You doe aduance your cunning more & more, When truth kils truth, O diuelish holy fray! These vowes are Hermias. Will you giue her ore? Weigh oath with oath, and you will nothing weigh. Your vowes to her, and me, (put in two scales) Will euen weigh, and both as light as tales

Lys. I had no iudgement, when to her I swore

Hel. Nor none in my minde, now you giue her ore

Lys. Demetrius loues her, and he loues not you.


Dem. O Helen, goddesse, nimph, perfect, diuine, To what, my loue, shall I compare thine eyne! Christall is muddy, O how ripe in show, Thy lips, those kissing cherries, tempting grow! That pure congealed white, high Taurus snow, Fan'd with the Easterne winde, turnes to a crow, When thou holdst vp thy hand. O let me kisse This Princesse of pure white, this seale of blisse

Hell. O spight! O hell! I see you are all bent To set against me, for your merriment: If you were ciuill, and knew curtesie, You would not doe me thus much iniury. Can you not hate me, as I know you doe, But you must ioyne in soules to mocke me to? If you are men, as men you are in show, You would not vse a gentle Lady so; To vow, and sweare, and superpraise my parts, When I am sure you hate me with your hearts. You both are Riuals, and loue Hermia; And now both Riuals to mocke Helena. A trim exploit, a manly enterprize, To coniure teares vp in a poore maids eyes, With your derision; none of noble sort, Would so offend a Virgin, and extort A poore soules patience, all to make you sport, Lysa. You are vnkind Demetrius; be not so, For you loue Hermia; this you know I know; And here with all good will, with all my heart, In Hermias loue I yeeld you vp my part; And yours of Helena, To me bequeath, Whom I do loue, and will do to my death

Hel. Neuer did mockers wast more idle breth

Dem. Lysander, keep thy Hermia, I will none: If ere I lou'd her, all that loue is gone. My heart to her, but as guest-wise soiourn'd, And now to Helen it is home return'd, There to remaine

Lys. It is not so

De. Disparage not the faith thou dost not know, Lest to thy perill thou abide it deare. Looke where thy Loue comes, yonder is thy deare. Enter Hermia.

Her. Dark night, that from the eye his function takes, The eare more quicke of apprehension makes, Wherein it doth impaire the seeing sense, It paies the hearing double recompence. Thou art not by mine eye, Lysander found, Mine eare (I thanke it) brought me to that sound. But why vnkindly didst thou leaue me so? Lysan. Why should hee stay whom Loue doth presse to go? Her. What loue could presse Lysander from my side? Lys. Lysanders loue (that would not let him bide) Faire Helena; who more engilds the night, Then all yon fierie oes, and eies of light. Why seek'st thou me? Could not this make thee know, The hate I bare thee, made me leaue thee so? Her. You speake not as you thinke; it cannot be

William Shakespeare
Classic Literature Library

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