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Love's Labor's Lost.
SCENE I. - Navarre. A Park, with a Palace in it. Fat paunches have lean pates; and dainty bits
| Make rich the ribs, but bankerout the wits. Enter the KING, BIRON, LONGAVILLE, and
Dum. My loving lord, Dumain is mortified. DUMAIN.
| The grosser manner of these world's delights King. Let fame, that all hunt after in their He throws upon the gross world's baser slaves. lives,
To love, to wealth, to pomp, I pine and die; Live registered upon our brazen tombs,
With all these living in philosophy. And then grace us in the disgrace of death; Biron. I can but say their protestation over : When, spite of cormorant devouring time, So much, dear liege, I have already sworn; The endeavor of this present breath may buy That is, to live and study here three years. That honor which shall bate his scythe's keen edge, But there are other strict observances : And make us heirs of all eternity
As, not to see a woman in that term; Therefore, brave conquerors ! — for so you are, Which I hope well is not enrolléd there : That war against your own affections,
And one day in a week to touch no food; And the huge army of the world's desires, – And but one meal on every day beside; Our late edíct shall strongly stand in force : The which I hope is not enrolled there : Navarre shall be the wonder of the world; And then, to sleep but three hours in the night, Our court shall be a little academe,
And not be seen to wink of all the day Still and contemplative in living art.
(When I was wont to think no harm all night, You three, Birón, Dumain, and Longaville, And make a dark night too of half the day); Have sworn for three years' term to live with me, which I hope well is not enrolled there : My fellow scholars, and to keep those statutes O, these are barren tasks, too hard to keep; That are recorded in this schedule here :
Not to see the ladies, — study,— fast, — not sleep; Your oaths are past, and now subscribe your King. Your oath is passed to pass away from names;
these. That his own hand may strike his honor down Biron. Let me say no, my liege, an if you please ; That violates the smallest branch herein : I only swore to study with your grace, If you are armed to do as sworn to do,
And stay here in your court for three years' space. Subscribe to your deep oath, and keep it too. Long. You swore to that, Birón, and to the rest. Long. I am resolved : 't is but a three years' Biron. By yea and nay, sir, then I swore in fast;
jest. — The mind shall banquet, though the body pine : What is the end of study? - let me know.
King. Why, that to know which else we should Long. He weeds the corn, and still lets grow the not know.
weeding Biron. Things hid and barred, you mean, from Biron. The spring is near, when green geese are common sense?
a-breeding. King. Ay, that is study's godlike recompense. Dum. How follows that ?
Biron. Come on then, I will swear to study so, Biron. Fit in his place and time.
Dum. In reason nothing.
King. Birón is like an envious sneaping frost, Or, study where to meet some mistress fine, That bites the first-born infants of the spring.
When mistresses from common sense are hid : Biron. Well, say I am; why should proud sumOr, having sworn too hard-a-keeping oath,
mer boast, Study to break it, and not break my troth.
Before the birds have any cause to sing ? If study's gain be thus, and this be so,
Why should I joy in any abortive birth ? Study knows that which yet he doth not know: At Christmas I no more desire a rose, Swear me to this, and I will ne'er say no. Than wish a snow in May's new-fangled shows; King. These be the stops that hinder study But like of each thing that in season grows. quite,
So you, to study now it is too late, And train our intellects to vain delight. Climb o'er the house to unlock the little gate. Biron. Why, all delights are vain; and that King. Well, sit you out: go home, Birón ; most vain,
adieu! Which, with pain purchased doth inherit pain : Biron. No, my good lord; I have sworn to stay As, painfully to pore upon a book,
with you : To seek the light of truth; while truth the And though I have for barbarism spoke more while
Than for that angel knowledge you can say, Doth falsely blind the eyesight of his look : Yet confident I'll keep what I have swore, Light, seeking light, doth light of light be-/ And bide the penance of cach three years' day. guile :
Give me the paper, let me read the same; So, ere you find where light in darkness lies, And to the strick'st decrees I'll write my name. Your light grows dark by losing of your eyes. King. How well this yielding rescues thee from Study me how to please the eye indeed,
shame! By fixing it upon a fairer cye;
“ Item, That no woman shall come within a mile of Study is like the heaven's glorious sun,
my court,” That will not be deep-searched with saucy looks; | Hath this been proclaimed ? Small have continual plodders ever won,
Long. Four days ago.
Biron. Let's see the penalty.
“On pain of losing her tongue." --
Long. Marry, that did I.
Long. To fright them hence with that dread Dum. Proceeded well, to stop all good proceed
This child of fancy, that Armado hight, " Item, If any man be seen to talk with a woman | For interim to our studies, shall relate, within the term of three years, he shall endure such
In high-born words, the worth of many a knight public shame as the rest of the court shall possibly de
From tawny Spain, lost in the world's debate. vise." —
How you delight my lords, I know not, I; This article, my liege, yourself must break; But I protest, I love to hear him lie,
For well you know, here comes in embassy And I will use him for my minstrelsy. The French king's daughter, with yourself to Biron. Armado is a most illustrious wight, speak, —
A man of fire-new words, fashion's own knight.
Enter DULL, with a letter, and COSTARD. King. What say you, lords ? — why, this was quite forgot.
Dull. Which is the duke's own person ? Biron. So study evermore is overshot;
Biron. This, fellow : what wouldst? While it doth study to have what it would, Dull. I myself reprehend his own person, for I It doth forget to do the thing it should :
am his grace's tharborough : but I would see his And when it hath the thing it bunteth most, own person in flesh and blood. 'T is won as towns with fire; so won, so lost. Biron. This is he. King. We must of force dispense with this de- Dull. Signior Arme - Arme - commer cree;
There's villainy abroad; this letter will tell you She must lie here on mere necessity.
more. Biron. Necessity will make us all forsworn Cost. Sir, the contempts thereof are as touching Three thousand times, within this three years' me. space :
King. A letter from the magnificent Armado. For every man with his affects is born ;
If I break faith, this word shall speak for me,
[Subscribes. e that breaks them in the least degree, Stands in attainder of eternal shame :
Suggestions are to others as to me;
That hath a mint of phrases in his brain :
Long. A high hope for a low having: God grant us patience !
Biron. To hear? or forbear hearing?
Long. To hear meekly, sir, and to laugh moderately; or to forbear both.
Biron. Well, sir, be it as the style shall give us cause to climb in the merriness.
Cost. The matter is to me, sir, as concerning Jaquenetta. The manner of it is, I was taken with the manner.
Biron. In what manner?
Cost. In manner and form following, sir; all those three : I was seen with her in the manorhouse, sitting with her upon the form, and taken following her into the park; which, put together, is in manner and form following. Now, sir, for the manner, — it is the manner of a man to speak to a woman : for the form, - in some form. Biron. For the following, sir.
Doth ravish, like enchanting harmony;
Have chose as umpire of their mutiny:
Cost. As it shall follow in my correction; and
KING reads. God defend the right!
— “which, as I remember, hight Costard," — King. Will you hear this letter with attention ?
Cost. O me!
King reads. after the flesh.
- "sorted and consorted, contrary to thy estab
lished proclaimed edict and continent canon, with — King reads.
with — with — but with this I passion to say where“Great deputy, the welkin's vicegerent, and sole dom- with,” — inator of Navarre, my soul's earth’s God, and body's
Cost. With a wench. fostering patron,” — Cost. Not a word of Costard yet.
-“ with a child of our grandmother Eve, a female; KING reads.
or, for thy more sweet understanding, a woman. Him,
I (as my ever-esteemed duty pricks me on) have sent to “So it is,” –
thee, to receive the meed of punishment, by thy sweet Cost. It may be so; but if he say it is so, he is,
grace's officer, Antony Dull; a man of good repute, car
riage, bearing, and estimation.” in telling true, but so. King. Peace! :
Dull. Me, an 't shall please you; I, Antony Cost. — be to me, and every man that dares Dull. not fight!
-“For Jaquenetta (so is the weaker vessel called,
which I apprehended with the aforesaid swain), I keep KING reads.
her as a vessel of thy law's fury; and shall, at the least
of thy sweet notice, bring her to trial. Thine, in all “So it is, besieged with sable-colored melancholy, Il compliments of devoted and heart-burning heat of duty, did commend the black-oppressing humor to the most
“Don ADRIANO DE ARMADO." wholesome physic of thy health-giving air; and, as I am a gentleman, betook myself to walk. The time Biron. This is not so well as I looked for, but when ? About the sixth hour; when beasts most graze, the best that ever I heard. birds best peck, and men sit down to that nourishment
King. Ay, the best for the worst. — But, sirwhich is called super. So much for the time when. Now for the ground which; which, I mean, I walked
rah, what say you to this? upon: it is yeleped thy park. Then for the place where;
Cost. Sir, I confess the wench. where, I mean, I did encounter that obscene and most King. Did you hear the proclamation ? preposterous event, that draweth from my snow-white Cost. I do confess much of the hearing it, but pen the ebon-colored ink, which here thou viewest, be- little of the marking of it. holdest, surveyest, or seest. But to the place where, - King. It was proclaimed a year's imprisonment it standeth north-north-east and by east from the west
to be taken with a wench. corner of thy curious-knotted garden: there did I see that low-spirited swain, that base minnow of thy mirth,” —
Cost. I was taken with none, sir; I was taken
with a damosel. Cost. Me.
King. Well, it was proclaimed damosel.
Cost. This was no damosel neither, sir; she was - "that unlettered small-knowing soul," —
King. It is so varied too; for it was proclaimed Cost. Me.
virgin. KING reads.
Cost. If it were, I deny her virginity; I was - "that shallow vassal,” —
taken with a maid.
King. This maid will not serve your turn, sir. Cost. Still me.
Cost. This maid will serve my turn, sir.