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weather that you make yourself: it is needful that you frame the season for your own harvest.
D. John. I had rather be a cankerin a hedge, than a rose in his grace; and it better fits my blood to be disdained of all, than to fashion a carriage to rob love from any; in this, though I cannot be said to be a flattering honest man, it must not be denied that I am a plain-dealing villain. I am trusted with a muzzle, and enfranchised with a clog; therefore I have decreed not to sing in my cage: If I had my mouth, I would bite; if I had my liberty, I would do my liking: in the mean time, let me be that I am, and seek not to alter me.
Con. Can you make no use of your discontent?
D. John. I make all use of it, for I use it only. Who comes here? What news, Borachio ?
Enter BORACHIO. Bora. I came yonder from a great supper prince, your brother, is royally entertained by nato; and I can give you intelligence of an intende marriage.
D. John. Will it serve for any model? to build mis chief on? What is he for a fool, that betroths himself to unquietness ?
Bora. Marry, it is your brother's right hand.
D. John. A proper squire! And who, and who? Which way looks he?
Bora. Marry, on Hero, the daughter and heir of Leonato.
D. John. A very forward March chick! How came
you to this?
Bora. Being entertained for a perfumer, as I was smoking a musty room," comes me the prince and Claudio, hand in hand, in sad conference: I whipped me behind the arras; and there heard it agreed upon, that the prince should woo Hero for himself, and having obtained her, give her to count Claudio.
1 A canker is the canker-rose, or dog-rose. “I had rather be a neg. lected dog-rose in a hedge, than a garden-rose if it profited by his culture.”
2 Model is here used in an unusual sense; but Bullokar explains it, Model, the platforme, or form of any thing."
D. John. Come, come, let us thither; this may prove food to my displeasure; that young start-up hath all the glory of my overthrow; if I can cross him any way, I bless myself every way. You are both sure, and will assist me?
Con. To the death, my lord.
D. John. Let us to the great supper; their cheer is the greater, that I am subdued : would the cook were of my mind !-Shall we go prove what's to be done ?
Bora. We'll wait upon your lordship. [Exeunt.
A Hall in Leonato's House.
Enter LEONATO, ANTONIO, HERO, BEATRICE, and others.
Leon. Was not count John here at supper ?
Beat. How tartly that gentleman looks! I never can see him, but I am heart-burned an hour after.
Hero. He is of a very melancholy disposition.
Beat. He were an excellent man, that were made just in the mid-way between him and Benedick: the one is too like an image, and says nothing; and the other, too like my lady's eldest son, evermore tattling.
Leon. Then half seignior Benedick's tongue in count John's mouth, and half count John's melancholy in seignior Benedick's face,
1 The neglect of cleanliness among our ancestors rendered such precautions too often necessary.
Beat. With a good leg, and a good foot, uncle, and money enough in his purse, such a man would win any woman in the world, --if he could get her good will.
Leon. By my troth, niece, thou wilt never get thee a husband, if thou be so shrewd of thy tongue.
Ant. In faith, she is too curst.
Beat. Too curst is more than curst: I shall lessen God's sending that way: for it is said, God sends a curst cow short horns; but to a cow too curst he sends
Leon. So, by being too curst, God will send you no horns.
Beat. Just, if he send me no husband : for the which blessing, I am at him upon my knees every morning and evening : lord! I could not endure a husband with a beard on his face; I had rather lie in the woollen.
Leon. You may light upon a husband that hath no beard.
Beat. What should I do with him? dress him in my apparel, and make him my waiting gentlewoman? He that hath a beard, is more than a youth ; and he that hath no beard, is less than a man: and he that is more than a youth, is not for me; and he that is less than a man, I am not for him. Therefore I will even take sixpence in earnest of the bear-herd, and lead his apes into hell.
Leon. Well, then, go you into hell ?
Beat. No; but to the gate ; and there will the devil meet me, like an old cuckold, with horns on his head,
you to heaven, Beatrice, get you to heaven ; here's no place for you maids: so deliver I up my apes, and away to Saint Peter for the heavens ; he shows me where the bachelors sit, and there live we as merry as the day is long.
Ant. Well, niece, [To Hero.] I trust you will be ruled by your father.
Beat. Yes, faith ; it is my cousin's duty to make
courtesy, and say, Father, as it please you :-
Leon. Well, niece, I hope to see you one day fitted with a husband.
Beat. Not till God make men of some other metal than earth. Would it not grieve a woman to be overmastered with a piece of valiant dust? To make an account of her life to a clod of wayward marl ? No, uncle, I'll none : Adam's sons are my brethren; and truly, I hold it a sin to match in my kindred.
Leon. Daughter, remember what I told you; if the prince do solicit you in that kind, you know your answer.
Beat. The fault will be in the music, cousin, if you be not wooed in good time: if the prince be too important, tell him, there is measure in every thing, and so dance out the answer. For hear me, Hero; wooing, wedding, and repenting, is as a Scotch jig, a measure, and a cinque-pace; the first suit is hot and hasty, like a Scotch jig, and full as fantastical; the wedding, mannerly-modest, as a measure full of state and ancientry; and then comes repentance, and, with his bad legs, falls into the cinque-pace faster and faster, till he sink into his grave.
Leon. Cousin, you apprehend passing shrewdly.
Beat. I have a good eye, uncle; I can see a church by day-light.
Leon. The revellers are entering ; brother, make good room
Enter Don Pedro, Claudio, BENEDICK, BALTHAZAR;
Don John, BorachIO, MARGARET, URSULA, and others masked.
D. Pedro. Lady, will you walk about with your friend?
3 A measure, in old language, besides its ordinary meaning, signified also a dance.
Hero. So you walk softly, and look sweetly, and say nothing, I am yours for the walk; and, especially, when I walk away.
D. Pedro. With me in your company?
Hero. When I like your favor ; for God defend, the lute should be like the case !
D. Pedro. My visor is Philemon's roof; within the house is Jove.
Hero. Why, then, your visor should be thatched.
[Takes her aside. Bene. Well, I would you did like me.
Marg. So would not I, for your own sake; for I have many ill qualities.
Bene. Which is one ?
Bene. I love you the better; the hearers may cry, Amen.
Murg. God match me with a good dancer !
Marg. And God keep him out of my sight, when the dance is done —Answer, clerk.
Balth. No more words; the clerk is answered.
Urs. I know you well enough; you are seignior Antonio.
Ant. At a word, I am not.
Urs. You could never do him so ill-well, unless you were the very man: here's his dry hand up and down; you are he, you are he.
Ant. At a word I am not.
Urs. Come, come; do you think I do not know you by your excellent wit? Can virtue hide itself? Go to, mum, you are he; graces will appear, and there's an end.
1 Alluding to the fable of Baucis and Philemon in Ovid.