The. And we will heare it

Hip. No my noble Lord, it is not for you. I haue heard It ouer, and it is nothing, nothing in the world; Vnless you can finde sport in their intents, Extreamely stretched, and cond with cruell paine, To doe you seruice

Thes. I will heare that play. For neuer any thing Can be amisse, when simplenesse and duty tender it. Goe bring them in, and take your places, Ladies

Hip. I loue not to see wretchednesse orecharged; And duty in his seruice perishing

Thes. Why gentle sweet, you shall see no such thing

Hip. He saies, they can doe nothing in this kinde

Thes. The kinder we, to giue them thanks for nothing Our sport shall be, to take what they mistake; And what poore duty cannot doe, noble respect Takes it in might, not merit. Where I haue come, great Clearkes haue purposed To greete me with premeditated welcomes; Where I haue seene them shiuer and looke pale, Make periods in the midst of sentences, Throttle their practiz'd accent in their feares, And in conclusion, dumbly haue broke off, Not paying me a welcome. Trust me sweete, Out of this silence yet, I pickt a welcome: And in the modesty of fearefull duty, I read as much, as from the ratling tongue Of saucy and audacious eloquence. Loue therefore, and tongue-tide simplicity, In least, speake most, to my capacity

Egeus. So please your Grace, the Prologue is addrest

Duke. Let him approach.

Flor. Trum.

Enter the Prologue. Quince.

Pro. If we offend, it is with our good will. That you should thinke, we come not to offend, But with good will. To shew our simple skill, That is the true beginning of our end. Consider then, we come but in despight. We do not come, as minding to content you, Our true intent is. All for your delight, We are not heere. That you should here repent you, The Actors are at hand; and by their show, You shall know all, that you are like to know

Thes. This fellow doth not stand vpon points

Lys. He hath rid his Prologue, like a rough Colt: he knowes not the stop. A good morall my lord. it is not enough to speake, but to speake true

Hip. Indeed hee hath plaid on his Prologue, like a childe on a Recorder, a sound, but not in gouernment

Thes. His speech was like a tangled chaine: nothing impaired, but all disordered. Who is next?

Tawyer with a Trumpet before them.

Enter Pyramus and Thisby, Wall, Moone-shine, and Lyon.

Prol. Gentles, perchance you wonder at this show, But wonder on, till truth make all things plaine. This man is Piramus, if you would know; This beauteous Lady, Thisby is certaine. This man, with lyme and rough-cast, doth present Wall, that vile wall, which did these louers sunder: And through walls chink (poor soules) they are content To whisper. At the which, let no man wonder. This man, with Lanthorne, dog, and bush of thorne, Presenteth moone-shine. For if you will know, By moone-shine did these Louers thinke no scorne To meet at Ninus toombe, there, there to wooe: This grizly beast (which Lyon hight by name) The trusty Thisby, comming first by night, Did scarre away, or rather did affright: And as she fled, her mantle she did fall; Which Lyon vile with bloody mouth did staine. Anon comes Piramus, sweet youth and tall, And findes his Thisbies Mantle slaine; Whereat, with blade, with bloody blamefull blade, He brauely broacht his boiling bloudy breast, And Thisby, tarrying in Mulberry shade, His dagger drew, and died. For all the rest, Let Lyon, Moone-shine, Wall, and Louers twaine, At large discourse, while here they doe remaine.

William Shakespeare
Classic Literature Library

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