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Dread prince of plackets, king of codpieces:
Sole imperator, and great general

Of trotting parators: (o my little heart!)
And I to be a corporal of his file,

And wear his colours, like a tumbler's hoop!
What? I love! I fue! what? I feek a wife!
A woman! that is like a German clock,
Still a repairing, ever out of frame,
And never going aright, being a watch,
But being watch'd, that it may ftill go right.
Nay, to be perjur'd, which is worst of all:
And, among three, to love the worst of all!
A whitely wanton with a velvet brow,

With two pitch balls stuck in her face for eyes,
Ay, and, by heav'n, one that will do the deed,
Though Argus were her eunuch and her guard:
And I to figh for her! to watch for her!
Το pray for her! go to: it is a plague
That Cupid will impose for my neglect
Of his almighty, dreadful, little might.

Well, I will love, write, figh, pray, fue, and groan:
Some men must love my lady, and fome Joan.




A pavilion in the park near the palace.
Enter the Princefs, Rofaline, Maria, Catharine, Lords,
Attendants, and a Forefter.



AS that the king that spurr'd his horse so hard
Against the fteep uprifing of the hill?

Boyet. I know not, but, I think, it was not he.
Prin. Whoe'er he was, he fhow'd a mounting mind.




Well, lords, to-day we shall have our despatch,
On faturday we will return to France.

Then, forefter, my friend, where is the bush
That we must stand and play the murtherer in?


For. Hard by, upon the edge of yonder coppice; A ftand, where you may make the faireft fhoot. Enter Coftard.


Boyet. Here comes a member of the commonwealth."

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Prin. I thank my beauty, I am fair that shoot,

And thereupon thou speak'ft the fairest shoot.

For. Pardon me, madam, for I meant not fo.
Prin. What, what? first praife me, then again fay, no?

O fhort-liv'd pride! not fair? alack for wo!

For. Yes, madam, fair.

Prin. Nay, never paint me now;

Where fair is not, praise cannot mend the brow.
Here, good my glafs, take this for telling true;
Fair payment for foul words is more than due.

For. Nothing but fair is that which you inherit.
Prin. See, fee, my beauty will be fav'd by merit.
O herefy in fair, fit for these days!

A giving hand, though foul, shall have fair praise.
But come, the bow: now mercy goes to kill,
And shooting well is then accounted ill.

Thus will I fave my credit in the shoot,
Not wounding, pity would not let me do't:

If wounding, then it was to how my skill,

That more for praise than purpose meant to kill.
And, out of queftion, fo it is fometimes;
Glory grows guilty of detefted crimes;

When, for fame's fake, for praise, an outward part,
We bend to that the working of the heart.

As I, for praise alone, now feek to spill

The poor deer's blood, that my heart means no ill.

Boyet. Do not curft wives hold that self-sovereignty

Only for praife' fake, when they striue to be

Lords o'er their lords?

Prin. Only for praise; and praise we may afford To any lady that fubdues her lord.

Enter Coftard.



Coft. God dig-you-den all! pray you, which is the head lady?
Prin. Thou fhalt know her, fellow, by the reft that have no heads.
Coft. Which is the greatest lady, the highest?

Prin. The thickeft, and the tallest.

Coft. The thickest, and the tallest! it is fo, truth is truth..

An your waift, mistress, were as flender as my wit,

One o' these girdles for your waist should be fit.

Are not you the chief woman? you are the thickest here.
Prin. What's your will, fir? what's your will?
Coft. I have, &c.


Coft. I have a letter from monfieur Biron, to one lady Rofaline. Prin. O, thy letter, thy letter: he's a good friend of mine. Stand afide, good bearer. Boyet, you can carve;

Break up this capon.1

Boyet. I am bound to ferve.

This letter is miftook, it importeth none here;

It is writ to Jaquenetta.

Prin. We will read it, I swear.

Break the neck of the wax, and every one give ear.


Boyet reads.

Y heaven, that thou art fair, is most infallible; true, that thou art beauteous; truth itself, that thou art lovely: more fairer than fair, beautiful than beauteous, truer than truth itself, have commiferation on thy heroical vaffal! The magnanimous and most illuftrate king Cophetua fet eye upon the pernicious and indubitate beggar Zenelophon; and he it was that might rightly say, veni, vidi, vici; which to anatomize in the vulgar, (o bafe and obfcure vulgar!) videlicet, he came, faw, and overcame: he came, one; faw, two; overcame, three: who came? the king; why did he come? to fee; why did he fee? to overcome: to whom came he? to the beggar; what faw he? the beggar; whom overcame he? the beggar: the conclusion is victory; on whofe fide? the king's: the captive is enrich'd; on whofe fide? the beggar's: the catastrophe is a nuptial; on whose fide? the king's? no; on both in one, or one in both: I am the king, (for fo ftands the comparison) thou the beggar, for fo witneffeth thy lowlinefs. Shall I command thy love? I may: fhall I enforce thy love? I could: fhall I entreat thy love? I will. What fhalt thou exchange for rags? robes; for tittles? titles; for thyfelf? me. Thus, expecting thy reply, I profane my lips on thy foot, my eyes on thy picture, and my heart on thy every part.

Thine, in the dearest defign of industry,

Don Adriano de Armado.

Meaning the letter, as poulet in French signifies both a chicken and a loveletter.

P 2


Thus doft thou hear the Nemean lion roar

'Gainst thee, thou lamb, that ftandest as his prey; Submiffive fall his princely feet before,

And he from forage will incline to play.

But if thou strive, poor foul, what art thou then ?
Food for his rage, repasture for his den.

Prin. What plume of feathers is he that endited this letter?
What vane? what weathercock? did you ever hear better?
Boyet. I am much deceived, but I remember the style.
Prin. Elfe your memory is bad, going o'er it erewhile.
· Boyet. This Armado is a Spaniard that keeps here in court,
A phantasm, a mammúccio, and one that makes sport
To the prince and his book-mates.

Prin. Thou fellow, a word:

Who gave thee this letter?

Coft. I told you, my lord.

Prin. To whom should'ft thou give it?

Coft. From my lord to my lady.

Prin. From which lord to which lady?

Coft. From my lord Berown, a good master of mine,

To a lady of France that he call'd Rofaline.

Prin. Thou haft mistaken his letter. Come, lords, away.

Here, sweet, put up this, 'twill be thine another day.* [Exeunt.

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Finely put on, indeed.

Mar. You ftill wrangle with her, Boyet, and she strikes at the brow.

Boyet. But the herfelf is hit lower. Have I hit her now?

Rof. Shall I come upon thee with an old faying, that was a man when king Pippin of France

was a little boy, as touching the hit it?

Boyet. So I may answer thee with one as old, that was a woman when queen Guinover of Britain was a little wench, as touching the hit it.

Ref. Thou can'ft not hit it, hit it, hit it.

Thou can't not hit it, my good man.




[Shoot within.]

Enter Dull, Holofernes, and Nathaniel.


ERY reverent sport, truly; and done in the testimony of a good confcience.

Hol. The deer was, as you know, fanguis, in blood; ripe as a pomwater; who now hangeth like a jewel in the ear of cœlo, the iky, the welkin, the heav'n; and anon falleth like a crab on the face of terra, the foil, the land, the earth.

Nath. Truly, mafter Holofernes, the epithets are fweetly varied, like a scholar at the leaft: but, fir, I affure ye, it was a buck of the first head.

Hol. Sir Nathaniel, haud credo.

Dull. 'Twas not a haud credo, 'twas a pricket.

Hol. Moft barbarous intimation! yet a kind of infinuation, as it were, in via, in way of explication; facere, as it were, replication; or, rather, oftentare, to fhow, as it were, his

Boyet. I cannot, cannot, cannot.

An I cannot, another can.

Coft. By my troth, moft pleasant! how both did fit it!

Mar. Á mark marvellous well fhot; for they both did hit it.
Boyet. A mark! o, mark but that mark! a mark, fays my lady.

Let the mark have a prick in't, to meet at, if it may be.
Mar. Wide o'th' bow hand; i'faith your hand is out.
Caft. Indeed, a' muft fhoot nearer, or he'll ne'er hit the clout.
Boyet. And if my hand be out, then, belike, your hand is in.
Coft. Then will the get the upfhot by cleaving the pin.
Mar. Come, come, you talk greafily, your lips grow foul.
Coft. She's too hard for you at pricks, fir; challenge her to bowl.
Boyet. I fcar too much rubbing; good night, my good owl.
Caft. By my foul, a fwain! a moft fimple clown!

Lord, lord! how the ladies and I have put him down!

O' my troth, moft fweet jefts! moft incony vulgar wit!

When it comes fo fmoothly off, fo obfcenely, as it were, so fit.
Armado o'th' one fide, o, a moft dainty man!

To fee him walk before a lady, and to bear her fan!

To fee him kifs his hand, and how moft fweetly he will swear!
And his page o' t'other fide, that handful of wit!
Ah, heav'ns! it is a moft pathetical nit!

Sowla, fowla!

[Exit. Rof.


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