As you Like it

Page 09

Actus Secundus. Scoena Prima.

Enter Duke Senior: Amyens, and two or three Lords like Forresters.

Duk.Sen. Now my Coe-mates, and brothers in exile: Hath not old custome made this life more sweete Then that of painted pompe? Are not these woods More free from perill then the enuious Court? Heere feele we not the penaltie of Adam, The seasons difference, as the Icie phange And churlish chiding of the winters winde, Which when it bites and blowes vpon my body Euen till I shrinke with cold, I smile, and say This is no flattery: these are counsellors That feelingly perswade me what I am: Sweet are the vses of aduersitie Which like the toad, ougly and venemous, Weares yet a precious Iewell in his head: And this our life exempt from publike haunt, Findes tongues in trees, bookes in the running brookes, Sermons in stones, and good in euery thing

Amien. I would not change it, happy is your Grace That can translate the stubbornnesse of fortune Into so quiet and so sweet a stile

Du.Sen. Come, shall we goe and kill vs venison? And yet it irkes me the poore dapled fooles Being natiue Burgers of this desert City, Should in their owne confines with forked heads Haue their round hanches goard

1.Lord. Indeed my Lord The melancholy Iaques grieues at that, And in that kinde sweares you doe more vsurpe Then doth your brother that hath banish'd you: To day my Lord of Amiens, and my selfe, Did steale behinde him as he lay along Vnder an oake, whose anticke roote peepes out Vpon the brooke that brawles along this wood, To the which place a poore sequestred Stag That from the Hunters aime had tane a hurt, Did come to languish; and indeed my Lord The wretched annimall heau'd forth such groanes That their discharge did stretch his leatherne coat Almost to bursting, and the big round teares Cours'd one another downe his innocent nose In pitteous chase: and thus the hairie foole, Much marked of the melancholie Iaques, Stood on th' extremest verge of the swift brooke, Augmenting it with teares

Du.Sen. But what said Iaques? Did he not moralize this spectacle? 1.Lord. O yes, into a thousand similies. First, for his weeping into the needlesse streame; Poore Deere quoth he, thou mak'st a testament As worldlings doe, giuing thy sum of more To that which had too much: then being there alone, Left and abandoned of his veluet friend; 'Tis right quoth he, thus miserie doth part The Fluxe of companie: anon a carelesse Heard Full of the pasture, iumps along by him And neuer staies to greet him: I quoth Iaques, Sweepe on you fat and greazie Citizens, 'Tis iust the fashion; wherefore doe you looke Vpon that poore and broken bankrupt there? Thus most inuectiuely he pierceth through The body of Countrie, Citie, Court, Yea, and of this our life, swearing that we Are meere vsurpers, tyrants, and whats worse To fright the Annimals, and to kill them vp In their assign'd and natiue dwelling place

D.Sen. And did you leaue him in this contemplation? 2.Lord. We did my Lord, weeping and commenting Vpon the sobbing Deere

Du.Sen. Show me the place, I loue to cope him in these sullen fits, For then he's full of matter

1.Lor. Ile bring you to him strait.


Scena Secunda.

Enter Duke, with Lords.

Duk. Can it be possible that no man saw them? It cannot be, some villaines of my Court Are of consent and sufferance in this

William Shakespeare
Classic Literature Library

All Pages of This Book