Page images

you have books for good manners. I will name you the degrees. The first, the Retort courteous; the second, the Quip modest; the third, the Reply churlish; the fourth, the Reproof valiant; the fifth, the Countercheck quarrelsome; the sixth, the Lie with circumstance; the seventh, the Lie direct.

All these you may avoid, but the lie direct, and you may avoid that too, with an If. I knew when seven justices could not take up a quarrel ; but when the parties were met themselves, one of them thought but of an If, as If you said so, then I said so; and they shook hands, and swore brothers. Your If is the only peace-maker ; much virtue in If.

Jaq. Is not this a rare fellow, my lord ? He's as good at any thing, and yet a fool.

Duke S. He uses his folly like a stalking-horse, and under the presentation of that, he shoots his wit.

Enter Hymen, leading Rosalind in women's clothes ·

and CELIA.

Still Music.
Hym. Then is there mirth in heaven,

When earthly things, made even,

Atone * together.
Good duke, receive thy daughter ;
Hymen from heaven brought her,

Yea, brought her hither ;
That thou might'st join her hand with his
Whose heart within her bosom is.


1 The Booke of Nurture; or, Schoole of Good Manners for Men, Servants, and Children, with stans puer ad mensam, 12mo., without date, in black letter, is most probably the work referred to. It was written by Hugh Rhodes, and first published in the reign of Edward Vi.

2 "A stalking horse." See note on Much Ado about Nothing, Act ii. Sc. 3.

3 Rosalind is imagined by the rest of the company to be brought by enchantment, and is therefore introduced, by a supposed aerial being, in the character of Hymen.

4 i. e. at one ; accord, or agree together. This is the old sense of the phrase, “ an attonement, a loving againe after a breach or falling out Reditus in gratia cum aliquo.”—Baret.

Ros. To you I give myself, for I am yours.

[To Duke s. To you I give myself, for I am yours.

[TO ORLANDO. Duke S. If there be truth in sight, you are my

daughter. Orl. If there be truth in sight, you are my Rosa

Phe. If sight and shape be true,
Why then,-my love adieu !
Ros. I'll have no father, if you be not he.

[To Duke S. I'll have no husband, if you be not he ;

[T. ORLANDO. Nor ne'er wed woman, if you be not she.

[To PHEBE. Hym. Peace, ho! I bar confusion.

'Tis I must make conclusion

Of these most strange events :
Here's eight that must take hands,
To join in Hymen's bands,

If truth holds true contents. 1
You and you no cross shall part :

[To ORLANDO and ROSALIND. You and you are heart in heart:

[TO OLIVER and Celia. You [To Phabe.] to his love must accord, Or have a woman to your

You and you are sure together,

[To TouchSTONE and Audrey.
As the winter to foul weather.
Whiles a wedlock-hymn we sing,
Feed yourselves with questioning; ?
That reason wonder may diminish,
How thus we met, and these things finish.

1 i. e. unless truth fails of veracity; if there be truth in truth
2 i. e, take your fill of discourse.


Wedding is great Juno's crown;

O blessed bond of board and bed!
'Tis Hymen peoples every town ;

High wedlock then be honored.
Honor, high honor and renown,
To Hymen, god of every town!

Duke $. O my dear niece, welcome thou art to me; Even daughter, welcome in no less degree.

Phe. I will not eat my word, now thou art mine, Thy faith my fancy to thee doth combine.

[To Silvius. Enter JAQUES DE Bois. Jaq. de B. Let me have audience for a word or

I am the second son of old sir Rowland,
That bring these tidings to this fair assembly.-
Duke Frederick, hearing how that every day
Men of great worth resorted to this forest,
Addressed a mighty power ; which were on foot,
In his own conduct, purposely to take
His brother here, and put him to the sword:
And to the skirts of this wild wood he came;
Where, meeting with an old religious man,
After some question with him, was converted
Both from his enterprise, and from the world;
His crown bequeathing to his banished brother,
And all their lands restored to them again
That were with him exiled. This to be true,
I do engage my life.
Duke s.

Welcome, young man:
Thou offer’st fairly to thy brothers' wedding:
To one, his lands withheld; and to the other,
A land itself at large, a potent dukedom.
First, in this forest, let us do those ends

1 i. e. prepared

That here were well begun, and well begot ;
And after, every of this happy number,
That have endured shrewd days and nights with us,
Shall share the good of our returned fortune,
According to the measure of their states.
Meantime, forget this new-fallen dignity,
And fall into our rustic revelry.
Play, music;—and you, brides and bridegrooms all,
With measure heaped in joy, to the measures fall.

Jaq. Sir, by your patience; if I heard you rightly,
The duke hath put on a religious life,
And thrown into neglect the pompous court ?

Jaq. de B. He hath.

Jaq. To him will I; out of these convertites There is much matter to be heard and learned.You to your former honor I bequeath: [To Duke S. Your patience and your virtue well deserve it : You [To ORLANDO.] to a love that your true faith doth

merit :You [To OLIVER.] to your land and love, and great

allies : You [To Silvius.] to a long and well deserved bed :And you [To TouchSTONE.] to wrangling; for thy lov

ing voyage Is but for two months victualed.So to your pleasures; I am for other than for dancing measures.

Duke S. Stay, Jaques, stay.

Jaq. To see no pastime, 1.-What you would have, I'll stay to know at your abandoned cave. [Exit. Duke S. Proceed, proceed. We will begin these

rites, And we do trust they'll end in true delights. [A dance.

| The reader feels some regret to take his leave of Jaques in this manner; and no less concern at not meeting with the faithful old Adam, at the close. It is the more remarkable that Shakspeare should have forgotten him, because Lodge, in his novel, makes him captain of the king's guard.

[ocr errors][merged small]

Ros. It is not the fashion to see the lady the epilogue ; but it is no more unhandsome, than to see the lord the prologue. If it be true, that good wine needs no bush, 'tis true that a good play needs no epilogue : yet to good wine they do use good bushes; and good plays prove the better by the help of good epilogues. What a case am I in, then, that am neither a good epilogue, nor cannot insinuate with you in the behalf of a good play? I am not furnished like a beggar; therefore to beg will not become me. My way is, to conjure you; and I'll begin with the women. I charge you, O women, for the love you bear to men, to like as much of this play as please you :: and I charge you, O men, for the love you bear to women, (as I perceive, by your simpering, none of you hate them,) that between you and the women the play may please. If I were a woman,' I would kiss as many of you as had beards that pleased me, complexions that liked me, and breaths that I defied not; and I am sure, as many as have good beards, or good faces, or sweet breaths, will, for my kind offer, when I make courtesy, bid me farewell.


1 It was formerly the general custom in England, as it is still in France and the Netherlands, to hang a bush of ivy at the door of a vintner.

2 Furnished, dressed.

3 This is the reading of the old copy, which has been altered to “ as much of this play as please them,” but surely without necessity. It is only the omission of the s at the end of please, which gives it a quaint appearance; but it was the practice of the Poet's age. 4 The parts of women were performed by men

or boys in Shakspeare's time.

5 i. e. that I liked.

« PreviousContinue »