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Queen. These are the forgeries of jealousy;
And never since that middle summer's spring
Met we on hill, in dale, forest, or mead,
By paved fountain, or by rulhy brook,
Or on the beached margent of the sea,
To dance our ringlets to the whistling wind,
But with thy brawls thou hast disturb’d our sport.
Therefore the winds, piping to us in vain,
As in revenge, have suck'd up
from the sea
Contagious fogs ; which falling in the land,
Have every pelting river made so proud,
That they have overborne their continents.
The ox hath therefore stretch'd his yoke in vain,
The ploughman lost his sweat; and the green corn
Hath rotted, ere its youth attain'd a beard.
The fold stands empty in the drowned field,
And crows are fatted with the murrain-flock;
The nine-mens morris is fill'd up with mud,
And the queint mazes in the wanton green,
For lack of tread, are undistinguishable.
The human mortals want their winter heried,
No night is now with hymn or carol bless'd:
Therefore the moon, the governess of floods,
Pale in her anger, washes all the air ;
That rheumatic diseafes do abound.
And thorough this distemperature, we fee
The seasons alter ; hoary-headed frosts
Fall in the fresh lap of the crimson rose;
And on old Hyems' chin and icy crown,
An od'rous chaplet of sweet summer-buds
Is, as in mockery, set. The spring, the summer,
The childing autumn, angry winter, change
Their wonted liveries; and th' amazed world,
By their inchase, now knows not which is which;
And this fame
of evil comes From our debate, from our dissenfion; We are their parents and original.
Ob. Do you amend it then, it lies in you.
Why should Titania cross her Oberon ?
I do but beg a little changeling boy,
To be my henchman.
Queen. Set your heart at rest,
The Fairy-land buys not the child of me.
His mother was a votress of my order,
And, in the spiced Indian air by night,
Full often she hath goslipp'd by my fide;
And fat with me on Neptune's yellow sands,
Marking th' embarked traders on the flood,
When we have laugh'd to see the fails conceive,
And grow big-bellied with the wanton wind :
Which the, with pretty and with swimming gate,
Follying (her womb then rich with my young squire)
Would imitate; and fail upon the land,
To fetch me trifles, and return again,
As from a voyage rich with merchandize.
But she, being mortal, of that boy did die;
And, for her fake, I do rear up her boy;
And, for her fake, I will not part with him.
Ob. How long within this wood intend you stay?
Queen. Perchance till after Theseus' wedding-day.
If you will patiently dance in our round,
And see our moon-light revels, go with us;
If not, shun me, and I will spare your haunts.
Ob. Give me that boy, and I will go with thee.
Queen. Not for thy Fairy kingdom. Elves, away: We Thall chide downright, if I longer stay.
[Exeunt Queen and her train. Ob. Well, go thy way; thou shalt not from this grove, Till I torment thee for this injury.My gentle Puck, come hither; thou remember'st Since once I sat upon a promontory, And heard a mermaid, on a dolphin's back, Uttering such dulcet and harmonious breath, That the rude sea grew civil at her song; And certain stars shot madly from their spheres, To hear the sea-maid's music.
Puck. I remember.
Ob. That very time I saw, but thou cou’dst not,
Flying between the cold moon and the earth,,
Cupid alarm’d: a certain aim he took
At a fair Vestal *, throned by the west,
* A compliment to Q Elisabeth ; as it seems probabli tha: Miry Queen of Scots was poinied at in the preceeding ipeech of Oberon.
And loos'd his love-fhaft smartly from his bow,
As it should pierce a hundred thousand hearts;
But I might see young Cupid's fiery shaft
Quench'd in the chaste beams of the wat'ry moon,
And the Imperial votress paffed on,
In maiden-meditation, fancy-free.
Yet mark'd I where the bolt of Cupid fell,
It fell upon a little western flower;
Before milk-white, now purple with love's wound;
And maiden's call it love in idleness.
Fetch me that flow'r; the herb I shew'd thee once :
The juice of it, on sleeping eye-lids laid,
Will make or man, or woman, madly doat
Upon the next live creature that it fees.
Fetch me this herb, and be thou here again,
Ere the Leviathan can swim a league.
Puck. I'll put a girdle round about the earth
In forty minutes,
[Exit. 0b. Having once this juice, I'll watch Titania when she is asleep. And drop the liquor of it in her eyes : The next thing which she waking looks upon, (Be it on lion, bear, or wolf, or bull, On meddling monkey, or on busy ape), She shall pursue it with the soul of love : And ere I take this charm from off her fight, (As I can take it with another herb), I'll make her render up her page to me. But who comes here? I am invisible; And I will overhear their conference.
Enter Demetrius, Helena following him.
Dem. I love thee not, therefore pursue me not,
Where is Lysander, and fair Hermia?
The one I'll flay; the other flayeth me.
Thou told'ft me, they were stol'n into this wood;
And here am I, and wood within this wood;
Because I cannot meet my Hermia.
Hence, get thee gone, and follow me no more.
Hel. You draw me, you hard-hearted adamant,
But yet you draw not iron; for
Is true as steel. Leave you your pow'r to draw,
And I shall have no pow's to follow you.
Dem. Do I entice you? do I speak you fair ?
Or rather do I not in plainest truth
you, I do not, nor I cannot, love you ?
Hel. And ev'n for that do I love thee the more;
I am your spaniel; and, Demetrius,
The more you beat me, I will fawn on you :
Ufe me but as your spaniel, spurn me,
Neglect me, lose me; only give me leave,
Unworthy as I am, to follow you.
What worser place can I beg in your love,
(And yet a place of high respect with me),
Than to be used as you use your dog?
Dem. Tempt not too much the hatred of my spirit; For I am fick when I do look on thee.
Hel. And I am fick when I look not on you.
Dem. You do impeach your modelty too much,
To leave the city, and commit yourself
Into the hands of one that loves you not ;
To trust the opportunity of night,
And the ill counsel of a desart place,
With the rich worth of your virginity.
Hel. Your virtue is my privilege; for that
It is not night when I do see your face;
Therefore I think I am not in the night.
Nor doth this wood lack worlds of company;
you in my respect are all the world.
Then how can it be said I am alone,
When all the world is here to look on me ?
Dem. I'll run from thee, and hide me in the brakes, And leave thee to the niercy of wild beasts.
Hel. The wildest hath not fuch a heart as you;
Run when you will, the story thall be change'd:
Apollo fies, and Daphne holds the chace;
The dove pursues the griffin; the mild hind
Makes speed to catch the tyger. Bootless fpeed !
When cowardice pursues, and valour flies.
Dem. I will not stay thy quellions; let me go :
Or if thou follow me, do not believe
But I shall do thee mischief in the wood.
Hel. Ay, in the temple, in the town, the field,
You do me mischief. Fie, Demetrius,
Your wrongs do set a scandal on my sex:
We cannot fight for love, as men may do;
We shou'd be woo'd, and were not made to woo.
I follow thee, and make a heav'n of hell;
To die upon the hand I love so well. [Exeunt.
S CE N E IV.
Ob. Fare thee well, nymph; ere he doth leave this
grove, Thou shalt fly him, and he shall seek thy love. Halt thou the flow'r there? welcome, wanderer,
Enter Puck. Puck. Ay, there it is.
Ob. I pray thee give it me. I know a bank whereon the wild thyme blows, Where ox-lip and the nodding violet grows, O'er-canopy'd with luscious woodbine, With sweet musk-roses, and with eglantine. There sleeps Titania, some time of the night, Lulld in these flow'rs with dances and delight; And there the snake throws her enamell'd skin, Weed wide enough to wrap a Fairy in : And with the juice of this I'll streak her eyes, And make her full of hateful fantasies. Take thou some of it, and seek through this grove ; A sweet Athenian lady is in love With a disdainful youth ; anoint his eyes; But do it when the next thing he espies May be the lady.
Thou shalt know the man, By the Athenian garnients he hath on. Effect it with some care, that he may prove More fond of her, than she upon her love ; And look you meet me ere the first cock crow. Puck. Fear not, my Lord, your servant shall do so,
[Exeunt. SCENE V. Enter Queen of Fairies, with her train.
Queen. Come, now a roundel, and a Fairy song: Then, for the third part of the midnight, hence ; Some to kill cạnkers in the mulk-rose buds,