A Midsummer Night’s Dream

Folger Shakespeare Library

http://www.folgerdigitaltexts.org


From the Director of the Folger Shakespeare Library

It is hard to imagine a world without Shakespeare. Since their composition four hundred years ago, Shakespeare’s plays and poems have traveled the globe, inviting those who see and read his works to make them their own.

Readers of the New Folger Editions are part of this ongoing process of “taking up Shakespeare,” finding our own thoughts and feelings in language that strikes us as old or unusual and, for that very reason, new. We still struggle to keep up with a writer who could think a mile a minute, whose words paint pictures that shift like clouds. These expertly edited texts are presented to the public as a resource for study, artistic adaptation, and enjoyment. By making the classic texts of the New Folger Editions available in electronic form as Folger Digital Texts, we place a trusted resource in the hands of anyone who wants them.

The New Folger Editions of Shakespeare’s plays, which are the basis for the texts realized here in digital form, are special because of their origin. The Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, DC, is the single greatest documentary source of Shakespeare’s works. An unparalleled collection of early modern books, manuscripts, and artwork connected to Shakespeare, the Folger’s holdings have been consulted extensively in the preparation of these texts. The Editions also reflect the expertise gained through the regular performance of Shakespeare’s works in the Folger’s Elizabethan Theater.

I want to express my deep thanks to editors Barbara Mowat and Paul Werstine for creating these indispensable editions of Shakespeare’s works, which incorporate the best of textual scholarship with a richness of commentary that is both inspired and engaging. Readers who want to know more about Shakespeare and his plays can follow the paths these distinguished scholars have tread by visiting the Folger either in-person or online, where a range of physical and digital resources exist to supplement the material in these texts. I commend to you these words, and hope that they inspire.

Michael Witmore
Director, Folger Shakespeare Library



Textual Introduction
By Barbara Mowat and Paul Werstine

Until now, with the release of the Folger Digital Texts, readers in search of a free online text of Shakespeare’s plays had to be content primarily with using the Moby™ Text, which reproduces a late-nineteenth century version of the plays. What is the difference? Many ordinary readers assume that there is a single text for the plays: what Shakespeare wrote. But Shakespeare’s plays were not published the way modern novels or plays are published today: as a single, authoritative text. In some cases, the plays have come down to us in multiple published versions, represented by various Quartos (Qq) and by the great collection put together by his colleagues in 1623, called the First Folio (F). There are, for example, three very different versions of Hamlet, two of King Lear, Henry V, Romeo and Juliet, and others. Editors choose which version to use as their base text, and then amend that text with words, lines or speech prefixes from the other versions that, in their judgment, make for a better or more accurate text.

Other editorial decisions involve choices about whether an unfamiliar word could be understood in light of other writings of the period or whether it should be changed; decisions about words that made it into Shakespeare’s text by accident through four hundred years of printings and misprinting; and even decisions based on cultural preference and taste. When the Moby™ Text was created, for example, it was deemed “improper” and “indecent” for Miranda to chastise Caliban for having attempted to rape her. (See The Tempest, 1.2: “Abhorred slave,/Which any print of goodness wilt not take,/Being capable of all ill! I pitied thee…”). All Shakespeare editors at the time took the speech away from her and gave it to her father, Prospero.

The editors of the Moby™ Shakespeare produced their text long before scholars fully understood the proper grounds on which to make the thousands of decisions that Shakespeare editors face. The Folger Library Shakespeare Editions, on which the Folger Digital Texts depend, make this editorial process as nearly transparent as is possible, in contrast to older texts, like the Moby™, which hide editorial interventions. The reader of the Folger Shakespeare knows where the text has been altered because editorial interventions are signaled by square brackets (for example, from Othello: “square bracketIf she in chains of magic were not bound,square bracket”), half-square brackets (for example, from Henry V: “With half-square bracketbloodhalf-square bracket and sword and fire to win your right,”), or angle brackets (for example, from Hamlet: “O farewell, honest angle bracketsoldier.angle bracket Who hath relieved/you?”). At any point in the text, you can hover your cursor over a bracket for more information.

Because the Folger Digital Texts are edited in accord with twenty-first century knowledge about Shakespeare’s texts, the Folger here provides them to readers, scholars, teachers, actors, directors, and students, free of charge, confident of their quality as texts of the plays and pleased to be able to make this contribution to the study and enjoyment of Shakespeare.


Synopsis

In A Midsummer Night’s Dream, residents of Athens mix with fairies from a local forest, with comic results. In the city, Theseus, Duke of Athens, is to marry Hippolyta, queen of the Amazons. Bottom the weaver and his friends rehearse in the woods a play they hope to stage for the wedding celebrations.

Four young Athenians are in a romantic tangle. Lysander and Demetrius love Hermia; she loves Lysander and her friend Helena loves Demetrius. Hermia’s father, Egeus, commands Hermia to marry Demetrius, and Theseus supports the father’s right. All four young Athenians end up in the woods, where Robin Goodfellow, who serves the fairy king Oberon, puts flower juice on the eyes of Lysander, and then Demetrius, unintentionally causing both to love Helena. Oberon, who is quarreling with his wife, Titania, uses the flower juice on her eyes. She falls in love with Bottom, who now, thanks to Robin Goodfellow, wears an ass’s head.

As the lovers sleep, Robin Goodfellow restores Lysander’s love for Hermia, so that now each young woman is matched with the man she loves. Oberon disenchants Titania and removes Bottom’s ass’s head. The two young couples join the royal couple in getting married, and Bottom rejoins his friends to perform the play.


Characters in the Play
Hermia
Lysander
Helena
Demetrius
bracket
four lovers
Theseus, duke of Athens
Hippolyta, queen of the Amazons
Egeus, father to Hermia
Philostrate, master of the revels to Theseus
Nick Bottom, weaver
Peter Quince, carpenter
Francis Flute, bellows-mender
Tom Snout, tinker
Snug, joiner
Robin Starveling, tailor
Oberon, king of the Fairies
Titania, queen of the Fairies
Robin Goodfellow, a “puck,” or hobgoblin, in Oberon’s service
A Fairy, in the service of Titania
Peaseblossom
Cobweb
Mote
Mustardseed
bracket
fairies attending upon Titania
Lords and Attendants on Theseus and Hippolyta
Other Fairies in the trains of Titania and Oberon

editorial emendationACT 1editorial emendation
editorial emendationScene 1editorial emendation
Enter Theseus, Hippolyta, editorial emendationand Philostrate,editorial emendation with others.

THESEUS 
FTLN 0001 Now, fair Hippolyta, our nuptial hour
FTLN 0002 Draws on apace. Four happy days bring in
FTLN 0003 Another moon. But, O, methinks how slow
FTLN 0004 This old moon editorial emendationwanes!editorial emendation She lingers my desires
FTLN 00055 Like to a stepdame or a dowager
FTLN 0006 Long withering out a young man’s revenue.
HIPPOLYTA 
FTLN 0007 Four days will quickly steep themselves in night;
FTLN 0008 Four nights will quickly dream away the time;
FTLN 0009 And then the moon, like to a silver bow
FTLN 001010 editorial emendationNeweditorial emendation-bent in heaven, shall behold the night
FTLN 0011 Of our solemnities.
THESEUS  FTLN 0012 Go, Philostrate,
FTLN 0013 Stir up the Athenian youth to merriments.
FTLN 0014 Awake the pert and nimble spirit of mirth.
FTLN 001515 Turn melancholy forth to funerals;
FTLN 0016 The pale companion is not for our pomp.
editorial emendationPhilostrate exits.editorial emendation
FTLN 0017 Hippolyta, I wooed thee with my sword
FTLN 0018 And won thy love doing thee injuries,
FTLN 0019 But I will wed thee in another key,
FTLN 002020 With pomp, with triumph, and with reveling.
7

9
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 1. SC. 1

Enter Egeus and his daughter Hermia, and Lysander
 and Demetrius.


EGEUS 
FTLN 0021 Happy be Theseus, our renownèd duke!
THESEUS 
FTLN 0022 Thanks, good Egeus. What’s the news with thee?
EGEUS 
FTLN 0023 Full of vexation come I, with complaint
FTLN 0024 Against my child, my daughter Hermia.—
FTLN 002525 Stand forth, Demetrius.—My noble lord,
FTLN 0026 This man hath my consent to marry her.—
FTLN 0027 Stand forth, Lysander.—And, my gracious duke,
FTLN 0028 This man hath bewitched the bosom of my child.—
FTLN 0029 Thou, thou, Lysander, thou hast given her rhymes
FTLN 003030 And interchanged love tokens with my child.
FTLN 0031 Thou hast by moonlight at her window sung
FTLN 0032 With feigning voice verses of feigning love
FTLN 0033 And stol’n the impression of her fantasy
FTLN 0034 With bracelets of thy hair, rings, gauds, conceits,
FTLN 003535 Knacks, trifles, nosegays, sweetmeats—messengers
FTLN 0036 Of strong prevailment in unhardened youth.
FTLN 0037 With cunning hast thou filched my daughter’s heart,
FTLN 0038 Turned her obedience (which is due to me)
FTLN 0039 To stubborn harshness.—And, my gracious duke,
FTLN 004040 Be it so she will not here before your Grace
FTLN 0041 Consent to marry with Demetrius,
FTLN 0042 I beg the ancient privilege of Athens:
FTLN 0043 As she is mine, I may dispose of her,
FTLN 0044 Which shall be either to this gentleman
FTLN 004545 Or to her death, according to our law
FTLN 0046 Immediately provided in that case.
THESEUS 
FTLN 0047 What say you, Hermia? Be advised, fair maid.
FTLN 0048 To you, your father should be as a god,
FTLN 0049 One that composed your beauties, yea, and one

11
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 1. SC. 1

FTLN 005050 To whom you are but as a form in wax
FTLN 0051 By him imprinted, and within his power
FTLN 0052 To leave the figure or disfigure it.
FTLN 0053 Demetrius is a worthy gentleman.
HERMIA 
FTLN 0054 So is Lysander.
THESEUS  FTLN 005555 In himself he is,
FTLN 0056 But in this kind, wanting your father’s voice,
FTLN 0057 The other must be held the worthier.
HERMIA 
FTLN 0058 I would my father looked but with my eyes.
THESEUS 
FTLN 0059 Rather your eyes must with his judgment look.
HERMIA 
FTLN 006060 I do entreat your Grace to pardon me.
FTLN 0061 I know not by what power I am made bold,
FTLN 0062 Nor how it may concern my modesty
FTLN 0063 In such a presence here to plead my thoughts;
FTLN 0064 But I beseech your Grace that I may know
FTLN 006565 The worst that may befall me in this case
FTLN 0066 If I refuse to wed Demetrius.
THESEUS 
FTLN 0067 Either to die the death, or to abjure
FTLN 0068 Forever the society of men.
FTLN 0069 Therefore, fair Hermia, question your desires,
FTLN 007070 Know of your youth, examine well your blood,
FTLN 0071 Whether (if you yield not to your father’s choice)
FTLN 0072 You can endure the livery of a nun,
FTLN 0073 For aye to be in shady cloister mewed,
FTLN 0074 To live a barren sister all your life,
FTLN 007575 Chanting faint hymns to the cold fruitless moon.
FTLN 0076 Thrice-blessèd they that master so their blood
FTLN 0077 To undergo such maiden pilgrimage,
FTLN 0078 But earthlier happy is the rose distilled
FTLN 0079 Than that which, withering on the virgin thorn,
FTLN 008080 Grows, lives, and dies in single blessedness.

13
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 1. SC. 1

HERMIA 
FTLN 0081 So will I grow, so live, so die, my lord,
FTLN 0082 Ere I will yield my virgin patent up
FTLN 0083 Unto his lordship whose unwishèd yoke
FTLN 0084 My soul consents not to give sovereignty.
THESEUS 
FTLN 008585 Take time to pause, and by the next new moon
FTLN 0086 (The sealing day betwixt my love and me
FTLN 0087 For everlasting bond of fellowship),
FTLN 0088 Upon that day either prepare to die
FTLN 0089 For disobedience to your father’s will,
FTLN 009090 Or else to wed Demetrius, as he would,
FTLN 0091 Or on Diana’s altar to protest
FTLN 0092 For aye austerity and single life.
DEMETRIUS 
FTLN 0093 Relent, sweet Hermia, and, Lysander, yield
FTLN 0094 Thy crazèd title to my certain right.
LYSANDER 
FTLN 009595 You have her father’s love, Demetrius.
FTLN 0096 Let me have Hermia’s. Do you marry him.
EGEUS 
FTLN 0097 Scornful Lysander, true, he hath my love;
FTLN 0098 And what is mine my love shall render him.
FTLN 0099 And she is mine, and all my right of her
FTLN 0100100 I do estate unto Demetrius.
LYSANDER , editorial emendationto Theseuseditorial emendation 
FTLN 0101 I am, my lord, as well derived as he,
FTLN 0102 As well possessed. My love is more than his;
FTLN 0103 My fortunes every way as fairly ranked
FTLN 0104 (If not with vantage) as Demetrius’;
FTLN 0105105 And (which is more than all these boasts can be)
FTLN 0106 I am beloved of beauteous Hermia.
FTLN 0107 Why should not I then prosecute my right?
FTLN 0108 Demetrius, I’ll avouch it to his head,
FTLN 0109 Made love to Nedar’s daughter, Helena,
FTLN 0110110 And won her soul; and she, sweet lady, dotes,

15
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 1. SC. 1

FTLN 0111 Devoutly dotes, dotes in idolatry,
FTLN 0112 Upon this spotted and inconstant man.
THESEUS 
FTLN 0113 I must confess that I have heard so much,
FTLN 0114 And with Demetrius thought to have spoke thereof;
FTLN 0115115 But, being overfull of self-affairs,
FTLN 0116 My mind did lose it.—But, Demetrius, come,
FTLN 0117 And come, Egeus; you shall go with me.
FTLN 0118 I have some private schooling for you both.—
FTLN 0119 For you, fair Hermia, look you arm yourself
FTLN 0120120 To fit your fancies to your father’s will,
FTLN 0121 Or else the law of Athens yields you up
FTLN 0122 (Which by no means we may extenuate)
FTLN 0123 To death or to a vow of single life.—
FTLN 0124 Come, my Hippolyta. What cheer, my love?—
FTLN 0125125 Demetrius and Egeus, go along.
FTLN 0126 I must employ you in some business
FTLN 0127 Against our nuptial, and confer with you
FTLN 0128 Of something nearly that concerns yourselves.
EGEUS 
FTLN 0129 With duty and desire we follow you.
editorial emendationAll but Hermia and Lysandereditorial emendation exit.
LYSANDER 
FTLN 0130130 How now, my love? Why is your cheek so pale?
FTLN 0131 How chance the roses there do fade so fast?
HERMIA 
FTLN 0132 Belike for want of rain, which I could well
FTLN 0133 Beteem them from the tempest of my eyes.
LYSANDER 
FTLN 0134 Ay me! For aught that I could ever read,
FTLN 0135135 Could ever hear by tale or history,
FTLN 0136 The course of true love never did run smooth.
FTLN 0137 But either it was different in blood—
HERMIA 
FTLN 0138 O cross! Too high to be enthralled to editorial emendationlow.editorial emendation
LYSANDER 
FTLN 0139 Or else misgraffèd in respect of years—

17
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 1. SC. 1

HERMIA 
FTLN 0140140 O spite! Too old to be engaged to young.
LYSANDER 
FTLN 0141 Or else it stood upon the choice of friends—
HERMIA 
FTLN 0142 O hell, to choose love by another’s eyes!
LYSANDER 
FTLN 0143 Or, if there were a sympathy in choice,
FTLN 0144 War, death, or sickness did lay siege to it,
FTLN 0145145 Making it momentany as a sound,
FTLN 0146 Swift as a shadow, short as any dream,
FTLN 0147 Brief as the lightning in the collied night,
FTLN 0148 That, in a spleen, unfolds both heaven and earth,
FTLN 0149 And, ere a man hath power to say “Behold!”
FTLN 0150150 The jaws of darkness do devour it up.
FTLN 0151 So quick bright things come to confusion.
HERMIA 
FTLN 0152 If then true lovers have been ever crossed,
FTLN 0153 It stands as an edict in destiny.
FTLN 0154 Then let us teach our trial patience
FTLN 0155155 Because it is a customary cross,
FTLN 0156 As due to love as thoughts and dreams and sighs,
FTLN 0157 Wishes and tears, poor fancy’s followers.
LYSANDER 
FTLN 0158 A good persuasion. Therefore, hear me, Hermia:
FTLN 0159 I have a widow aunt, a dowager
FTLN 0160160 Of great revenue, and she hath no child.
FTLN 0161 From Athens is her house remote seven leagues,
FTLN 0162 And she respects me as her only son.
FTLN 0163 There, gentle Hermia, may I marry thee;
FTLN 0164 And to that place the sharp Athenian law
FTLN 0165165 Cannot pursue us. If thou lovest me, then
FTLN 0166 Steal forth thy father’s house tomorrow night,
FTLN 0167 And in the wood a league without the town
FTLN 0168 (Where I did meet thee once with Helena
FTLN 0169 To do observance to a morn of May),
FTLN 0170170 There will I stay for thee.

19
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 1. SC. 1

HERMIA  FTLN 0171 My good Lysander,
FTLN 0172 I swear to thee by Cupid’s strongest bow,
FTLN 0173 By his best arrow with the golden head,
FTLN 0174 By the simplicity of Venus’ doves,
FTLN 0175175 By that which knitteth souls and prospers loves,
FTLN 0176 And by that fire which burned the Carthage queen
FTLN 0177 When the false Trojan under sail was seen,
FTLN 0178 By all the vows that ever men have broke
FTLN 0179 (In number more than ever women spoke),
FTLN 0180180 In that same place thou hast appointed me,
FTLN 0181 Tomorrow truly will I meet with thee.
LYSANDER 
FTLN 0182 Keep promise, love. Look, here comes Helena.

Enter Helena.

HERMIA 
FTLN 0183 Godspeed, fair Helena. Whither away?
HELENA 
FTLN 0184 Call you me “fair”? That “fair” again unsay.
FTLN 0185185 Demetrius loves your fair. O happy fair!
FTLN 0186 Your eyes are lodestars and your tongue’s sweet air
FTLN 0187 More tunable than lark to shepherd’s ear
FTLN 0188 When wheat is green, when hawthorn buds appear.
FTLN 0189 Sickness is catching. O, were favor so!
FTLN 0190190 editorial emendationYours wouldeditorial emendation I catch, fair Hermia, ere I go.
FTLN 0191 My ear should catch your voice, my eye your eye;
FTLN 0192 My tongue should catch your tongue’s sweet
FTLN 0193 melody.
FTLN 0194 Were the world mine, Demetrius being bated,
FTLN 0195195 The rest editorial emendationI’deditorial emendation give to be to you translated.
FTLN 0196 O, teach me how you look and with what art
FTLN 0197 You sway the motion of Demetrius’ heart!
HERMIA 
FTLN 0198 I frown upon him, yet he loves me still.
HELENA 
FTLN 0199 O, that your frowns would teach my smiles such
FTLN 0200200 skill!

21
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 1. SC. 1

HERMIA 
FTLN 0201 I give him curses, yet he gives me love.
HELENA 
FTLN 0202 O, that my prayers could such affection move!
HERMIA 
FTLN 0203 The more I hate, the more he follows me.
HELENA 
FTLN 0204 The more I love, the more he hateth me.
HERMIA 
FTLN 0205205 His folly, Helena, is no fault of mine.
HELENA 
FTLN 0206 None but your beauty. Would that fault were mine!
HERMIA 
FTLN 0207 Take comfort: he no more shall see my face.
FTLN 0208 Lysander and myself will fly this place.
FTLN 0209 Before the time I did Lysander see
FTLN 0210210 Seemed Athens as a paradise to me.
FTLN 0211 O, then, what graces in my love do dwell
FTLN 0212 That he hath turned a heaven unto a hell!
LYSANDER 
FTLN 0213 Helen, to you our minds we will unfold.
FTLN 0214 Tomorrow night when Phoebe doth behold
FTLN 0215215 Her silver visage in the wat’ry glass,
FTLN 0216 Decking with liquid pearl the bladed grass
FTLN 0217 (A time that lovers’ flights doth still conceal),
FTLN 0218 Through Athens’ gates have we devised to steal.
HERMIA 
FTLN 0219 And in the wood where often you and I
FTLN 0220220 Upon faint primrose beds were wont to lie,
FTLN 0221 Emptying our bosoms of their counsel editorial emendationsweet,editorial emendation
FTLN 0222 There my Lysander and myself shall meet,
FTLN 0223 And thence from Athens turn away our eyes
FTLN 0224 To seek new friends and editorial emendationstranger companies.editorial emendation
FTLN 0225225 Farewell, sweet playfellow. Pray thou for us,
FTLN 0226 And good luck grant thee thy Demetrius.—

23
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 1. SC. 1

FTLN 0227 Keep word, Lysander. We must starve our sight
FTLN 0228 From lovers’ food till morrow deep midnight.
LYSANDER 
FTLN 0229 I will, my Hermia. Hermia exits.
FTLN 0230230 Helena, adieu.
FTLN 0231 As you on him, Demetrius dote on you!
Lysander exits.
HELENA 
FTLN 0232 How happy some o’er other some can be!
FTLN 0233 Through Athens I am thought as fair as she.
FTLN 0234 But what of that? Demetrius thinks not so.
FTLN 0235235 He will not know what all but he do know.
FTLN 0236 And, as he errs, doting on Hermia’s eyes,
FTLN 0237 So I, admiring of his qualities.
FTLN 0238 Things base and vile, holding no quantity,
FTLN 0239 Love can transpose to form and dignity.
FTLN 0240240 Love looks not with the eyes but with the mind;
FTLN 0241 And therefore is winged Cupid painted blind.
FTLN 0242 Nor hath Love’s mind of any judgment taste.
FTLN 0243 Wings, and no eyes, figure unheedy haste.
FTLN 0244 And therefore is Love said to be a child
FTLN 0245245 Because in choice he is so oft beguiled.
FTLN 0246 As waggish boys in game themselves forswear,
FTLN 0247 So the boy Love is perjured everywhere.
FTLN 0248 For, ere Demetrius looked on Hermia’s eyne,
FTLN 0249 He hailed down oaths that he was only mine;
FTLN 0250250 And when this hail some heat from Hermia felt,
FTLN 0251 So he dissolved, and show’rs of oaths did melt.
FTLN 0252 I will go tell him of fair Hermia’s flight.
FTLN 0253 Then to the wood will he tomorrow night
FTLN 0254 Pursue her. And, for this intelligence
FTLN 0255255 If I have thanks, it is a dear expense.
FTLN 0256 But herein mean I to enrich my pain,
FTLN 0257 To have his sight thither and back again.
She exits.




25
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 1. SC. 2

editorial emendationScene 2editorial emendation
Enter Quince the carpenter, and Snug the joiner, and
Bottom the weaver, and Flute the bellows-mender, and
Snout the tinker, and Starveling the tailor.


QUINCE  FTLN 0258Is all our company here?
BOTTOM  FTLN 0259You were best to call them generally, man by
FTLN 0260 man, according to the scrip.
QUINCE  FTLN 0261Here is the scroll of every man’s name which
FTLN 02625 is thought fit, through all Athens, to play in our
FTLN 0263 interlude before the Duke and the Duchess on his
FTLN 0264 wedding day at night.
BOTTOM  FTLN 0265First, good Peter Quince, say what the play
FTLN 0266 treats on, then read the names of the actors, and so
FTLN 026710 grow to a point.
QUINCE  FTLN 0268Marry, our play is The most lamentable
FTLN 0269 comedy and most cruel death of Pyramus and
FTLN 0270 Thisbe.
BOTTOM  FTLN 0271A very good piece of work, I assure you, and a
FTLN 027215 merry. Now, good Peter Quince, call forth your
FTLN 0273 actors by the scroll. Masters, spread yourselves.
QUINCE  FTLN 0274Answer as I call you. Nick Bottom, the weaver.
BOTTOM  FTLN 0275Ready. Name what part I am for, and
FTLN 0276 proceed.
QUINCE  FTLN 027720You, Nick Bottom, are set down for Pyramus.
BOTTOM  FTLN 0278What is Pyramus—a lover or a tyrant?
QUINCE  FTLN 0279A lover that kills himself most gallant for love.
BOTTOM  FTLN 0280That will ask some tears in the true performing
FTLN 0281 of it. If I do it, let the audience look to their
FTLN 028225 eyes. I will move storms; I will condole in some
FTLN 0283 measure. To the rest.—Yet my chief humor is for a
FTLN 0284 tyrant. I could play Ercles rarely, or a part to tear a
FTLN 0285 cat in, to make all split:

FTLN 0286 The raging rocks
FTLN 028730 And shivering shocks
FTLN 0288 Shall break the locks

27
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 1. SC. 2

FTLN 0289  Of prison gates.
FTLN 0290 And Phibbus’ car
FTLN 0291 Shall shine from far
FTLN 029235 And make and mar
FTLN 0293  The foolish Fates.


FTLN 0294 This was lofty. Now name the rest of the players.
FTLN 0295 This is Ercles’ vein, a tyrant’s vein. A lover is more
FTLN 0296 condoling.
QUINCE  FTLN 029740Francis Flute, the bellows-mender.
FLUTE  FTLN 0298Here, Peter Quince.
QUINCE  FTLN 0299Flute, you must take Thisbe on you.
FLUTE  FTLN 0300What is Thisbe—a wand’ring knight?
QUINCE  FTLN 0301It is the lady that Pyramus must love.
FLUTE  FTLN 030245Nay, faith, let not me play a woman. I have a
FTLN 0303 beard coming.
QUINCE  FTLN 0304That’s all one. You shall play it in a mask, and
FTLN 0305 you may speak as small as you will.
BOTTOM  FTLN 0306An I may hide my face, let me play Thisbe too.
FTLN 030750 I’ll speak in a monstrous little voice: “Thisne,
FTLN 0308 Thisne!”—“Ah Pyramus, my lover dear! Thy Thisbe
FTLN 0309 dear and lady dear!”
QUINCE  FTLN 0310No, no, you must play Pyramus—and, Flute,
FTLN 0311 you Thisbe.
BOTTOM  FTLN 031255Well, proceed.
QUINCE  FTLN 0313Robin Starveling, the tailor.
STARVELING  FTLN 0314Here, Peter Quince.
QUINCE  FTLN 0315Robin Starveling, you must play Thisbe’s
FTLN 0316 mother.—Tom Snout, the tinker.
SNOUT  FTLN 031760Here, Peter Quince.
QUINCE  FTLN 0318You, Pyramus’ father.—Myself, Thisbe’s
FTLN 0319 father.—Snug the joiner, you the lion’s part.—
FTLN 0320 And I hope here is a play fitted.
SNUG  FTLN 0321Have you the lion’s part written? Pray you, if it
FTLN 032265 be, give it me, for I am slow of study.
QUINCE  FTLN 0323You may do it extempore, for it is nothing but
FTLN 0324 roaring.

29
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 1. SC. 2

BOTTOM  FTLN 0325Let me play the lion too. I will roar that I will
FTLN 0326 do any man’s heart good to hear me. I will roar that
FTLN 032770 I will make the Duke say “Let him roar again. Let
FTLN 0328 him roar again!”
QUINCE  FTLN 0329An you should do it too terribly, you would
FTLN 0330 fright the Duchess and the ladies that they would
FTLN 0331 shriek, and that were enough to hang us all.
ALL  FTLN 033275That would hang us, every mother’s son.
BOTTOM  FTLN 0333I grant you, friends, if you should fright the
FTLN 0334 ladies out of their wits, they would have no more
FTLN 0335 discretion but to hang us. But I will aggravate my
FTLN 0336 voice so that I will roar you as gently as any sucking
FTLN 033780 dove. I will roar you an ’twere any nightingale.
QUINCE  FTLN 0338You can play no part but Pyramus, for Pyramus
FTLN 0339 is a sweet-faced man, a proper man as one
FTLN 0340 shall see in a summer’s day, a most lovely gentlemanlike
FTLN 0341 man. Therefore you must needs play
FTLN 034285 Pyramus.
BOTTOM  FTLN 0343Well, I will undertake it. What beard were I
FTLN 0344 best to play it in?
QUINCE  FTLN 0345Why, what you will.
BOTTOM  FTLN 0346I will discharge it in either your straw-color
FTLN 034790 beard, your orange-tawny beard, your purple-in-grain
FTLN 0348 beard, or your French-crown-color beard,
FTLN 0349 your perfit yellow.
QUINCE  FTLN 0350Some of your French crowns have no hair at
FTLN 0351 all, and then you will play barefaced. But, masters,
FTLN 035295 here are your parts,  editorial emendationgiving out the parts,editorial emendation and I am
FTLN 0353 to entreat you, request you, and desire you to con
FTLN 0354 them by tomorrow night and meet me in the palace
FTLN 0355 wood, a mile without the town, by moonlight. There
FTLN 0356 will we rehearse, for if we meet in the city, we shall
FTLN 0357100 be dogged with company and our devices known. In
FTLN 0358 the meantime I will draw a bill of properties such as
FTLN 0359 our play wants. I pray you fail me not.
BOTTOM  FTLN 0360We will meet, and there we may rehearse

31
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 1. SC. 2

FTLN 0361 most obscenely and courageously. Take pains. Be
FTLN 0362105 perfit. Adieu.
QUINCE  FTLN 0363At the Duke’s Oak we meet.
BOTTOM  FTLN 0364Enough. Hold, or cut bowstrings.
They exit.




editorial emendationACT 2editorial emendation
editorial emendationScene 1editorial emendation
Enter a Fairy at one door and Robin Goodfellow at
another.


ROBIN 
FTLN 0365 How now, spirit? Whither wander you?
FAIRY 
FTLN 0366  Over hill, over dale,
FTLN 0367   Thorough bush, thorough brier,
FTLN 0368  Over park, over pale,
FTLN 03695   Thorough flood, thorough fire;
FTLN 0370  I do wander everywhere,
FTLN 0371  Swifter than the moon’s sphere.
FTLN 0372  And I serve the Fairy Queen,
FTLN 0373  To dew her orbs upon the green.
FTLN 037410  The cowslips tall her pensioners be;
FTLN 0375  In their gold coats spots you see;
FTLN 0376  Those be rubies, fairy favors;
FTLN 0377  In those freckles live their savors.

FTLN 0378 I must go seek some dewdrops here
FTLN 037915 And hang a pearl in every cowslip’s ear.
FTLN 0380 Farewell, thou lob of spirits. I’ll be gone.
FTLN 0381 Our queen and all her elves come here anon.
ROBIN 
FTLN 0382 The King doth keep his revels here tonight.
FTLN 0383 Take heed the Queen come not within his sight,
35

37
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 2. SC. 1

FTLN 038420 For Oberon is passing fell and wrath
FTLN 0385 Because that she, as her attendant, hath
FTLN 0386 A lovely boy stolen from an Indian king;
FTLN 0387 She never had so sweet a changeling.
FTLN 0388 And jealous Oberon would have the child
FTLN 038925 Knight of his train, to trace the forests wild.
FTLN 0390 But she perforce withholds the lovèd boy,
FTLN 0391 Crowns him with flowers, and makes him all her
FTLN 0392 joy.
FTLN 0393 And now they never meet in grove or green,
FTLN 039430 By fountain clear, or spangled starlight sheen,
FTLN 0395 But they do square, that all their elves for fear
FTLN 0396 Creep into acorn cups and hide them there.
FAIRY 
FTLN 0397 Either I mistake your shape and making quite,
FTLN 0398 Or else you are that shrewd and knavish sprite
FTLN 039935 Called Robin Goodfellow. Are not you he
FTLN 0400 That frights the maidens of the villagery,
FTLN 0401 Skim milk, and sometimes labor in the quern
FTLN 0402 And bootless make the breathless huswife churn,
FTLN 0403 And sometime make the drink to bear no barm,
FTLN 040440 Mislead night wanderers, laughing at their harm?
FTLN 0405 Those that “Hobgoblin” call you, and “sweet Puck,”
FTLN 0406 You do their work, and they shall have good luck.
FTLN 0407 Are not you he?
ROBIN  FTLN 0408 Thou speakest aright.
FTLN 040945 I am that merry wanderer of the night.
FTLN 0410 I jest to Oberon and make him smile
FTLN 0411 When I a fat and bean-fed horse beguile,
FTLN 0412 Neighing in likeness of a filly foal.
FTLN 0413 And sometime lurk I in a gossip’s bowl
FTLN 041450 In very likeness of a roasted crab,
FTLN 0415 And, when she drinks, against her lips I bob
FTLN 0416 And on her withered dewlap pour the ale.
FTLN 0417 The wisest aunt, telling the saddest tale,
FTLN 0418 Sometime for three-foot stool mistaketh me;

39
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 2. SC. 1

FTLN 041955 Then slip I from her bum, down topples she,
FTLN 0420 And “Tailor!” cries, and falls into a cough,
FTLN 0421 And then the whole choir hold their hips and loffe
FTLN 0422 And waxen in their mirth and neeze and swear
FTLN 0423 A merrier hour was never wasted there.
FTLN 042460 But room, fairy. Here comes Oberon.
FAIRY 
FTLN 0425 And here my mistress. Would that he were gone!

Enter editorial emendationOberoneditorial emendation the King of Fairies at one door, with his
train, and editorial emendationTitaniaeditorial emendation the Queen at another, with hers.


OBERON 
FTLN 0426 Ill met by moonlight, proud Titania.
TITANIA 
FTLN 0427 What, jealous Oberon? editorial emendationFairies,editorial emendation skip hence.
FTLN 0428 I have forsworn his bed and company.
OBERON 
FTLN 042965 Tarry, rash wanton. Am not I thy lord?
TITANIA 
FTLN 0430 Then I must be thy lady. But I know
FTLN 0431 When thou hast stolen away from Fairyland
FTLN 0432 And in the shape of Corin sat all day
FTLN 0433 Playing on pipes of corn and versing love
FTLN 043470 To amorous Phillida. Why art thou here,
FTLN 0435 Come from the farthest steep of India,
FTLN 0436 But that, forsooth, the bouncing Amazon,
FTLN 0437 Your buskined mistress and your warrior love,
FTLN 0438 To Theseus must be wedded, and you come
FTLN 043975 To give their bed joy and prosperity?
OBERON 
FTLN 0440 How canst thou thus for shame, Titania,
FTLN 0441 Glance at my credit with Hippolyta,
FTLN 0442 Knowing I know thy love to Theseus?
FTLN 0443 Didst not thou lead him through the glimmering
FTLN 044480 night
FTLN 0445 From editorial emendationPerigouna,editorial emendation whom he ravishèd,

41
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 2. SC. 1

FTLN 0446 And make him with fair editorial emendationAegleseditorial emendation break his faith,
FTLN 0447 With Ariadne and Antiopa?
TITANIA 
FTLN 0448 These are the forgeries of jealousy;
FTLN 044985 And never, since the middle summer’s spring,
FTLN 0450 Met we on hill, in dale, forest, or mead,
FTLN 0451 By pavèd fountain or by rushy brook,
FTLN 0452 Or in the beachèd margent of the sea,
FTLN 0453 To dance our ringlets to the whistling wind,
FTLN 045490 But with thy brawls thou hast disturbed our sport.
FTLN 0455 Therefore the winds, piping to us in vain,
FTLN 0456 As in revenge have sucked up from the sea
FTLN 0457 Contagious fogs, which, falling in the land,
FTLN 0458 Hath every pelting river made so proud
FTLN 045995 That they have overborne their continents.
FTLN 0460 The ox hath therefore stretched his yoke in vain,
FTLN 0461 The plowman lost his sweat, and the green corn
FTLN 0462 Hath rotted ere his youth attained a beard.
FTLN 0463 The fold stands empty in the drownèd field,
FTLN 0464100 And crows are fatted with the murrain flock.
FTLN 0465 The nine-men’s-morris is filled up with mud,
FTLN 0466 And the quaint mazes in the wanton green,
FTLN 0467 For lack of tread, are undistinguishable.
FTLN 0468 The human mortals want their winter here.
FTLN 0469105 No night is now with hymn or carol blessed.
FTLN 0470 Therefore the moon, the governess of floods,
FTLN 0471 Pale in her anger, washes all the air,
FTLN 0472 That rheumatic diseases do abound.
FTLN 0473 And thorough this distemperature we see
FTLN 0474110 The seasons alter: hoary-headed frosts
FTLN 0475 Fall in the fresh lap of the crimson rose,
FTLN 0476 And on old Hiems’ editorial emendationthineditorial emendation and icy crown
FTLN 0477 An odorous chaplet of sweet summer buds
FTLN 0478 Is, as in mockery, set. The spring, the summer,
FTLN 0479115 The childing autumn, angry winter, change
FTLN 0480 Their wonted liveries, and the mazèd world

43
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 2. SC. 1

FTLN 0481 By their increase now knows not which is which.
FTLN 0482 And this same progeny of evils comes
FTLN 0483 From our debate, from our dissension;
FTLN 0484120 We are their parents and original.
OBERON 
FTLN 0485 Do you amend it, then. It lies in you.
FTLN 0486 Why should Titania cross her Oberon?
FTLN 0487 I do but beg a little changeling boy
FTLN 0488 To be my henchman.
TITANIA  FTLN 0489125 Set your heart at rest:
FTLN 0490 The Fairyland buys not the child of me.
FTLN 0491 His mother was a vot’ress of my order,
FTLN 0492 And in the spicèd Indian air by night
FTLN 0493 Full often hath she gossiped by my side
FTLN 0494130 And sat with me on Neptune’s yellow sands,
FTLN 0495 Marking th’ embarkèd traders on the flood,
FTLN 0496 When we have laughed to see the sails conceive
FTLN 0497 And grow big-bellied with the wanton wind;
FTLN 0498 Which she, with pretty and with swimming gait,
FTLN 0499135 Following (her womb then rich with my young
FTLN 0500 squire),
FTLN 0501 Would imitate and sail upon the land
FTLN 0502 To fetch me trifles and return again,
FTLN 0503 As from a voyage, rich with merchandise.
FTLN 0504140 But she, being mortal, of that boy did die,
FTLN 0505 And for her sake do I rear up her boy,
FTLN 0506 And for her sake I will not part with him.
OBERON 
FTLN 0507 How long within this wood intend you stay?
TITANIA 
FTLN 0508 Perchance till after Theseus’ wedding day.
FTLN 0509145 If you will patiently dance in our round
FTLN 0510 And see our moonlight revels, go with us.
FTLN 0511 If not, shun me, and I will spare your haunts.
OBERON 
FTLN 0512 Give me that boy and I will go with thee.

45
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 2. SC. 1

TITANIA 
FTLN 0513 Not for thy fairy kingdom. Fairies, away.
FTLN 0514150 We shall chide downright if I longer stay.
editorial emendationTitania and her fairieseditorial emendation exit.
OBERON 
FTLN 0515 Well, go thy way. Thou shalt not from this grove
FTLN 0516 Till I torment thee for this injury.—
FTLN 0517 My gentle Puck, come hither. Thou rememb’rest
FTLN 0518 Since once I sat upon a promontory
FTLN 0519155 And heard a mermaid on a dolphin’s back
FTLN 0520 Uttering such dulcet and harmonious breath
FTLN 0521 That the rude sea grew civil at her song
FTLN 0522 And certain stars shot madly from their spheres
FTLN 0523 To hear the sea-maid’s music.
ROBIN  FTLN 0524160 I remember.
OBERON 
FTLN 0525 That very time I saw (but thou couldst not),
FTLN 0526 Flying between the cold moon and the earth,
FTLN 0527 Cupid all armed. A certain aim he took
FTLN 0528 At a fair vestal thronèd by editorial emendationtheeditorial emendation west,
FTLN 0529165 And loosed his love-shaft smartly from his bow
FTLN 0530 As it should pierce a hundred thousand hearts.
FTLN 0531 But I might see young Cupid’s fiery shaft
FTLN 0532 Quenched in the chaste beams of the wat’ry moon,
FTLN 0533 And the imperial vot’ress passèd on
FTLN 0534170 In maiden meditation, fancy-free.
FTLN 0535 Yet marked I where the bolt of Cupid fell.
FTLN 0536 It fell upon a little western flower,
FTLN 0537 Before, milk-white, now purple with love’s wound,
FTLN 0538 And maidens call it “love-in-idleness.”
FTLN 0539175 Fetch me that flower; the herb I showed thee once.
FTLN 0540 The juice of it on sleeping eyelids laid
FTLN 0541 Will make or man or woman madly dote
FTLN 0542 Upon the next live creature that it sees.
FTLN 0543 Fetch me this herb, and be thou here again
FTLN 0544180 Ere the leviathan can swim a league.

47
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 2. SC. 1

ROBIN 
FTLN 0545 I’ll put a girdle round about the Earth
FTLN 0546 In forty minutes. editorial emendationHe exits.editorial emendation
OBERON  FTLN 0547 Having once this juice,
FTLN 0548 I’ll watch Titania when she is asleep
FTLN 0549185 And drop the liquor of it in her eyes.
FTLN 0550 The next thing then she, waking, looks upon
FTLN 0551 (Be it on lion, bear, or wolf, or bull,
FTLN 0552 On meddling monkey, or on busy ape)
FTLN 0553 She shall pursue it with the soul of love.
FTLN 0554190 And ere I take this charm from off her sight
FTLN 0555 (As I can take it with another herb),
FTLN 0556 I’ll make her render up her page to me.
FTLN 0557 But who comes here? I am invisible,
FTLN 0558 And I will overhear their conference.

Enter Demetrius, Helena following him.

DEMETRIUS 
FTLN 0559195 I love thee not; therefore pursue me not.
FTLN 0560 Where is Lysander and fair Hermia?
FTLN 0561 The one I’ll stay; the other stayeth me.
FTLN 0562 Thou told’st me they were stol’n unto this wood,
FTLN 0563 And here am I, and wood within this wood
FTLN 0564200 Because I cannot meet my Hermia.
FTLN 0565 Hence, get thee gone, and follow me no more.
HELENA 
FTLN 0566 You draw me, you hard-hearted adamant!
FTLN 0567 But yet you draw not iron, for my heart
FTLN 0568 Is true as steel. Leave you your power to draw,
FTLN 0569205 And I shall have no power to follow you.
DEMETRIUS 
FTLN 0570 Do I entice you? Do I speak you fair?
FTLN 0571 Or rather do I not in plainest truth
FTLN 0572 Tell you I do not, editorial emendationnoreditorial emendation I cannot love you?
HELENA 
FTLN 0573 And even for that do I love you the more.

49
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 2. SC. 1

FTLN 0574210 I am your spaniel, and, Demetrius,
FTLN 0575 The more you beat me I will fawn on you.
FTLN 0576 Use me but as your spaniel: spurn me, strike me,
FTLN 0577 Neglect me, lose me; only give me leave
FTLN 0578 (Unworthy as I am) to follow you.
FTLN 0579215 What worser place can I beg in your love
FTLN 0580 (And yet a place of high respect with me)
FTLN 0581 Than to be usèd as you use your dog?
DEMETRIUS 
FTLN 0582 Tempt not too much the hatred of my spirit,
FTLN 0583 For I am sick when I do look on thee.
HELENA 
FTLN 0584220 And I am sick when I look not on you.
DEMETRIUS 
FTLN 0585 You do impeach your modesty too much
FTLN 0586 To leave the city and commit yourself
FTLN 0587 Into the hands of one that loves you not,
FTLN 0588 To trust the opportunity of night
FTLN 0589225 And the ill counsel of a desert place
FTLN 0590 With the rich worth of your virginity.
HELENA 
FTLN 0591 Your virtue is my privilege. For that
FTLN 0592 It is not night when I do see your face,
FTLN 0593 Therefore I think I am not in the night.
FTLN 0594230 Nor doth this wood lack worlds of company,
FTLN 0595 For you, in my respect, are all the world.
FTLN 0596 Then, how can it be said I am alone
FTLN 0597 When all the world is here to look on me?
DEMETRIUS 
FTLN 0598 I’ll run from thee and hide me in the brakes
FTLN 0599235 And leave thee to the mercy of wild beasts.
HELENA 
FTLN 0600 The wildest hath not such a heart as you.
FTLN 0601 Run when you will. The story shall be changed:
FTLN 0602 Apollo flies and Daphne holds the chase;
FTLN 0603 The dove pursues the griffin; the mild hind

51
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 2. SC. 1

FTLN 0604240 Makes speed to catch the tiger. Bootless speed
FTLN 0605 When cowardice pursues and valor flies!
DEMETRIUS 
FTLN 0606 I will not stay thy questions. Let me go,
FTLN 0607 Or if thou follow me, do not believe
FTLN 0608 But I shall do thee mischief in the wood.
HELENA 
FTLN 0609245 Ay, in the temple, in the town, the field,
FTLN 0610 You do me mischief. Fie, Demetrius!
FTLN 0611 Your wrongs do set a scandal on my sex.
FTLN 0612 We cannot fight for love as men may do.
FTLN 0613 We should be wooed and were not made to woo.
editorial emendationDemetrius exits.editorial emendation
FTLN 0614250 I’ll follow thee and make a heaven of hell
FTLN 0615 To die upon the hand I love so well. editorial emendationHelena exits.editorial emendation
OBERON 
FTLN 0616 Fare thee well, nymph. Ere he do leave this grove,
FTLN 0617 Thou shalt fly him, and he shall seek thy love.

Enter editorial emendationRobin.editorial emendation

FTLN 0618 Hast thou the flower there? Welcome, wanderer.
ROBIN 
FTLN 0619255 Ay, there it is.
OBERON  FTLN 0620 I pray thee give it me.
editorial emendationRobin gives him the flower.editorial emendation
FTLN 0621 I know a bank where the wild thyme blows,
FTLN 0622 Where oxlips and the nodding violet grows,
FTLN 0623 Quite overcanopied with luscious woodbine,
FTLN 0624260 With sweet muskroses, and with eglantine.
FTLN 0625 There sleeps Titania sometime of the night,
FTLN 0626 Lulled in these flowers with dances and delight.
FTLN 0627 And there the snake throws her enameled skin,
FTLN 0628 Weed wide enough to wrap a fairy in.
FTLN 0629265 And with the juice of this I’ll streak her eyes
FTLN 0630 And make her full of hateful fantasies.
FTLN 0631 Take thou some of it, and seek through this grove.

53
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 2. SC. 2

editorial emendationHe gives Robin part of the flower.editorial emendation
FTLN 0632 A sweet Athenian lady is in love
FTLN 0633 With a disdainful youth. Anoint his eyes,
FTLN 0634270 But do it when the next thing he espies
FTLN 0635 May be the lady. Thou shalt know the man
FTLN 0636 By the Athenian garments he hath on.
FTLN 0637 Effect it with some care, that he may prove
FTLN 0638 More fond on her than she upon her love.
FTLN 0639275 And look thou meet me ere the first cock crow.
ROBIN 
FTLN 0640 Fear not, my lord. Your servant shall do so.
They exit.


editorial emendationScene 2editorial emendation
Enter Titania, Queen of Fairies, with her train.

TITANIA 
FTLN 0641 Come, now a roundel and a fairy song;
FTLN 0642 Then, for the third part of a minute, hence—
FTLN 0643 Some to kill cankers in the muskrose buds,
FTLN 0644 Some war with reremice for their leathern wings
FTLN 06455 To make my small elves coats, and some keep back
FTLN 0646 The clamorous owl that nightly hoots and wonders
FTLN 0647 At our quaint spirits. Sing me now asleep.
FTLN 0648 Then to your offices and let me rest. editorial emendationShe lies down.editorial emendation

Fairies sing.
editorial emendationFIRST FAIRYeditorial emendation 
FTLN 0649 You spotted snakes with double tongue,
FTLN 065010  Thorny hedgehogs, be not seen.
FTLN 0651 Newts and blindworms, do no wrong,
FTLN 0652  Come not near our Fairy Queen.

editorial emendationCHORUSeditorial emendation 
FTLN 0653  Philomel, with melody
FTLN 0654  Sing in our sweet lullaby.

55
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 2. SC. 2

FTLN 065515 Lulla, lulla, lullaby, lulla, lulla, lullaby.
FTLN 0656  Never harm
FTLN 0657  Nor spell nor charm
FTLN 0658 Come our lovely lady nigh.
FTLN 0659 So good night, with lullaby.

FIRST FAIRY 
FTLN 066020 Weaving spiders, come not here.
FTLN 0661  Hence, you long-legged spinners, hence.
FTLN 0662 Beetles black, approach not near.
FTLN 0663  Worm nor snail, do no offence.

editorial emendationCHORUSeditorial emendation 
FTLN 0664  Philomel, with melody
FTLN 066525  Sing in our sweet lullaby.
FTLN 0666 Lulla, lulla, lullaby, lulla, lulla, lullaby.
FTLN 0667  Never harm
FTLN 0668  Nor spell nor charm
FTLN 0669 Come our lovely lady nigh.
FTLN 067030 So good night, with lullaby.

editorial emendationTitania sleeps.editorial emendation
SECOND FAIRY 
FTLN 0671 Hence, away! Now all is well.
FTLN 0672 One aloof stand sentinel.  editorial emendationFairies exit.editorial emendation

Enter Oberon, editorial emendationwho anoints Titania’s eyelids with the
nectar.editorial emendation


OBERON 
FTLN 0673 What thou seest when thou dost wake,
FTLN 0674 Do it for thy true love take.
FTLN 067535 Love and languish for his sake.
FTLN 0676 Be it ounce, or cat, or bear,
FTLN 0677 Pard, or boar with bristled hair,
FTLN 0678 In thy eye that shall appear
FTLN 0679 When thou wak’st, it is thy dear.
FTLN 068040 Wake when some vile thing is near.
editorial emendationHe exits.editorial emendation

Enter Lysander and Hermia.


57
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 2. SC. 2

LYSANDER 
FTLN 0681 Fair love, you faint with wand’ring in the wood.
FTLN 0682  And, to speak troth, I have forgot our way.
FTLN 0683 We’ll rest us, Hermia, if you think it good,
FTLN 0684  And tarry for the comfort of the day.
HERMIA 
FTLN 068545 editorial emendationBeeditorial emendation it so, Lysander. Find you out a bed,
FTLN 0686 For I upon this bank will rest my head.
LYSANDER 
FTLN 0687 One turf shall serve as pillow for us both;
FTLN 0688 One heart, one bed, two bosoms, and one troth.
HERMIA 
FTLN 0689 Nay, good Lysander. For my sake, my dear,
FTLN 069050 Lie further off yet. Do not lie so near.
LYSANDER 
FTLN 0691 O, take the sense, sweet, of my innocence!
FTLN 0692 Love takes the meaning in love’s conference.
FTLN 0693 I mean that my heart unto yours editorial emendationiseditorial emendation knit,
FTLN 0694 So that but one heart we can make of it;
FTLN 069555 Two bosoms interchainèd with an oath—
FTLN 0696 So then two bosoms and a single troth.
FTLN 0697 Then by your side no bed-room me deny,
FTLN 0698 For lying so, Hermia, I do not lie.
HERMIA 
FTLN 0699 Lysander riddles very prettily.
FTLN 070060 Now much beshrew my manners and my pride
FTLN 0701 If Hermia meant to say Lysander lied.
FTLN 0702 But, gentle friend, for love and courtesy,
FTLN 0703 Lie further off in human modesty.
FTLN 0704 Such separation, as may well be said,
FTLN 070565 Becomes a virtuous bachelor and a maid.
FTLN 0706 So far be distant; and good night, sweet friend.
FTLN 0707 Thy love ne’er alter till thy sweet life end!
LYSANDER 
FTLN 0708 “Amen, amen” to that fair prayer, say I,
FTLN 0709 And then end life when I end loyalty!
FTLN 071070 Here is my bed. Sleep give thee all his rest!

59
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 2. SC. 2

HERMIA 
FTLN 0711 With half that wish the wisher’s eyes be pressed!
editorial emendationThey sleep.editorial emendation

Enter editorial emendationRobin.editorial emendation

ROBIN 
FTLN 0712 Through the forest have I gone,
FTLN 0713 But Athenian found I none
FTLN 0714 On whose eyes I might approve
FTLN 071575 This flower’s force in stirring love.
editorial emendationHe sees Lysander.editorial emendation
FTLN 0716 Night and silence! Who is here?
FTLN 0717 Weeds of Athens he doth wear.
FTLN 0718 This is he my master said
FTLN 0719 Despisèd the Athenian maid.
FTLN 072080 And here the maiden, sleeping sound
FTLN 0721 On the dank and dirty ground.
FTLN 0722 Pretty soul, she durst not lie
FTLN 0723 Near this lack-love, this kill-courtesy.—
FTLN 0724 Churl, upon thy eyes I throw
FTLN 072585 All the power this charm doth owe.
editorial emendationHe anoints Lysander’s eyelids
with the nectar.editorial emendation

FTLN 0726 When thou wak’st, let love forbid
FTLN 0727 Sleep his seat on thy eyelid.
FTLN 0728 So, awake when I am gone,
FTLN 0729 For I must now to Oberon.
He exits.

Enter Demetrius and Helena, running.

HELENA 
FTLN 073090 Stay, though thou kill me, sweet Demetrius.
DEMETRIUS 
FTLN 0731 I charge thee, hence, and do not haunt me thus.
HELENA 
FTLN 0732 O, wilt thou darkling leave me? Do not so.

61
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 2. SC. 2

DEMETRIUS 
FTLN 0733 Stay, on thy peril. I alone will go. editorial emendationDemetrius exits.editorial emendation
HELENA 
FTLN 0734 O, I am out of breath in this fond chase.
FTLN 073595 The more my prayer, the lesser is my grace.
FTLN 0736 Happy is Hermia, wheresoe’er she lies,
FTLN 0737 For she hath blessèd and attractive eyes.
FTLN 0738 How came her eyes so bright? Not with salt tears.
FTLN 0739 If so, my eyes are oftener washed than hers.
FTLN 0740100 No, no, I am as ugly as a bear,
FTLN 0741 For beasts that meet me run away for fear.
FTLN 0742 Therefore no marvel though Demetrius
FTLN 0743 Do as a monster fly my presence thus.
FTLN 0744 What wicked and dissembling glass of mine
FTLN 0745105 Made me compare with Hermia’s sphery eyne?
FTLN 0746 But who is here? Lysander, on the ground!
FTLN 0747 Dead or asleep? I see no blood, no wound.—
FTLN 0748 Lysander, if you live, good sir, awake.
LYSANDER , editorial emendationwaking upeditorial emendation 
FTLN 0749 And run through fire I will for thy sweet sake.
FTLN 0750110 Transparent Helena! Nature shows art,
FTLN 0751 That through thy bosom makes me see thy heart.
FTLN 0752 Where is Demetrius? O, how fit a word
FTLN 0753 Is that vile name to perish on my sword!
HELENA 
FTLN 0754 Do not say so. Lysander, say not so.
FTLN 0755115 What though he love your Hermia? Lord, what
FTLN 0756 though?
FTLN 0757 Yet Hermia still loves you. Then be content.
LYSANDER 
FTLN 0758 Content with Hermia? No, I do repent
FTLN 0759 The tedious minutes I with her have spent.
FTLN 0760120 Not Hermia, but Helena I love.
FTLN 0761 Who will not change a raven for a dove?
FTLN 0762 The will of man is by his reason swayed,
FTLN 0763 And reason says you are the worthier maid.

63
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 2. SC. 2

FTLN 0764 Things growing are not ripe until their season;
FTLN 0765125 So I, being young, till now ripe not to reason.
FTLN 0766 And touching now the point of human skill,
FTLN 0767 Reason becomes the marshal to my will
FTLN 0768 And leads me to your eyes, where I o’erlook
FTLN 0769 Love’s stories written in love’s richest book.
HELENA 
FTLN 0770130 Wherefore was I to this keen mockery born?
FTLN 0771 When at your hands did I deserve this scorn?
FTLN 0772 Is ’t not enough, is ’t not enough, young man,
FTLN 0773 That I did never, no, nor never can
FTLN 0774 Deserve a sweet look from Demetrius’ eye,
FTLN 0775135 But you must flout my insufficiency?
FTLN 0776 Good troth, you do me wrong, good sooth, you do,
FTLN 0777 In such disdainful manner me to woo.
FTLN 0778 But fare you well. Perforce I must confess
FTLN 0779 I thought you lord of more true gentleness.
FTLN 0780140 O, that a lady of one man refused
FTLN 0781 Should of another therefore be abused! She exits.
LYSANDER 
FTLN 0782 She sees not Hermia.—Hermia, sleep thou there,
FTLN 0783 And never mayst thou come Lysander near.
FTLN 0784 For, as a surfeit of the sweetest things
FTLN 0785145 The deepest loathing to the stomach brings,
FTLN 0786 Or as the heresies that men do leave
FTLN 0787 Are hated most of those they did deceive,
FTLN 0788 So thou, my surfeit and my heresy,
FTLN 0789 Of all be hated, but the most of me!
FTLN 0790150 And, all my powers, address your love and might
FTLN 0791 To honor Helen and to be her knight. He exits.
HERMIA , editorial emendationwaking upeditorial emendation 
FTLN 0792 Help me, Lysander, help me! Do thy best
FTLN 0793 To pluck this crawling serpent from my breast.
FTLN 0794 Ay me, for pity! What a dream was here!
FTLN 0795155 Lysander, look how I do quake with fear.
FTLN 0796 Methought a serpent ate my heart away,

65
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 2. SC. 2

FTLN 0797 And you sat smiling at his cruel prey.
FTLN 0798 Lysander! What, removed? Lysander, lord!
FTLN 0799 What, out of hearing? Gone? No sound, no word?
FTLN 0800160 Alack, where are you? Speak, an if you hear.
FTLN 0801 Speak, of all loves! I swoon almost with fear.—
FTLN 0802 No? Then I well perceive you are not nigh.
FTLN 0803 Either death or you I’ll find immediately.
She exits.




editorial emendationACT 3editorial emendation
editorial emendationScene 1editorial emendation
editorial emendationWith Titania still asleep onstage,editorial emendation enter the Clowns,
editorial emendationBottom, Quince, Snout, Starveling, Snug, and Flute.editorial emendation


BOTTOM  FTLN 0804Are we all met?
QUINCE  FTLN 0805Pat, pat. And here’s a marvels convenient
FTLN 0806 place for our rehearsal. This green plot shall be
FTLN 0807 our stage, this hawthorn brake our tiring-house,
FTLN 08085 and we will do it in action as we will do it before
FTLN 0809 the Duke.
BOTTOM  FTLN 0810Peter Quince?
QUINCE  FTLN 0811What sayest thou, bully Bottom?
BOTTOM  FTLN 0812There are things in this comedy of Pyramus
FTLN 081310 and Thisbe that will never please. First, Pyramus
FTLN 0814 must draw a sword to kill himself, which the ladies
FTLN 0815 cannot abide. How answer you that?
SNOUT  FTLN 0816By ’r lakin, a parlous fear.
STARVELING  FTLN 0817I believe we must leave the killing out,
FTLN 081815 when all is done.
BOTTOM  FTLN 0819Not a whit! I have a device to make all well.
FTLN 0820 Write me a prologue, and let the prologue seem to
FTLN 0821 say we will do no harm with our swords, and that
FTLN 0822 Pyramus is not killed indeed. And, for the more
FTLN 082320 better assurance, tell them that I, Pyramus, am not
FTLN 0824 Pyramus, but Bottom the weaver. This will put them
FTLN 0825 out of fear.
69

71
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 3. SC. 1

QUINCE  FTLN 0826Well, we will have such a prologue, and it shall
FTLN 0827 be written in eight and six.
BOTTOM  FTLN 082825No, make it two more. Let it be written in
FTLN 0829 eight and eight.
SNOUT  FTLN 0830Will not the ladies be afeard of the lion?
STARVELING  FTLN 0831I fear it, I promise you.
BOTTOM  FTLN 0832Masters, you ought to consider with yourself,
FTLN 083330 to bring in (God shield us!) a lion among ladies is a
FTLN 0834 most dreadful thing. For there is not a more fearful
FTLN 0835 wildfowl than your lion living, and we ought to look
FTLN 0836 to ’t.
SNOUT  FTLN 0837Therefore another prologue must tell he is not
FTLN 083835 a lion.
BOTTOM  FTLN 0839Nay, you must name his name, and half his
FTLN 0840 face must be seen through the lion’s neck, and he
FTLN 0841 himself must speak through, saying thus, or to the
FTLN 0842 same defect: “Ladies,” or “Fair ladies, I would
FTLN 084340 wish you,” or “I would request you,” or “I would
FTLN 0844 entreat you not to fear, not to tremble! My life for
FTLN 0845 yours. If you think I come hither as a lion, it were
FTLN 0846 pity of my life. No, I am no such thing. I am a man as
FTLN 0847 other men are.” And there indeed let him name his
FTLN 084845 name and tell them plainly he is Snug the joiner.
QUINCE  FTLN 0849Well, it shall be so. But there is two hard
FTLN 0850 things: that is, to bring the moonlight into a chamber,
FTLN 0851 for you know Pyramus and Thisbe meet by
FTLN 0852 moonlight.
SNOUT  FTLN 085350Doth the moon shine that night we play our
FTLN 0854 play?
BOTTOM  FTLN 0855A calendar, a calendar! Look in the almanac.
FTLN 0856 Find out moonshine, find out moonshine.
editorial emendationQuince takes out a book.editorial emendation
QUINCE  FTLN 0857Yes, it doth shine that night.
editorial emendationBOTTOMeditorial emendation  FTLN 085855Why, then, may you leave a casement of the
FTLN 0859 great chamber window, where we play, open, and
FTLN 0860 the moon may shine in at the casement.

73
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 3. SC. 1

QUINCE  FTLN 0861Ay, or else one must come in with a bush of
FTLN 0862 thorns and a lantern and say he comes to disfigure
FTLN 086360 or to present the person of Moonshine. Then there
FTLN 0864 is another thing: we must have a wall in the great
FTLN 0865 chamber, for Pyramus and Thisbe, says the story,
FTLN 0866 did talk through the chink of a wall.
SNOUT  FTLN 0867You can never bring in a wall. What say you,
FTLN 086865 Bottom?
BOTTOM  FTLN 0869Some man or other must present Wall. And
FTLN 0870 let him have some plaster, or some loam, or some
FTLN 0871 roughcast about him to signify wall, or let him
FTLN 0872 hold his fingers thus, and through that cranny shall
FTLN 087370 Pyramus and Thisbe whisper.
QUINCE  FTLN 0874If that may be, then all is well. Come, sit down,
FTLN 0875 every mother’s son, and rehearse your parts. Pyramus,
FTLN 0876 you begin. When you have spoken your
FTLN 0877 speech, enter into that brake, and so everyone
FTLN 087875 according to his cue.

Enter Robin editorial emendationinvisible to those onstage.editorial emendation

ROBIN , editorial emendationasideeditorial emendation 
FTLN 0879 What hempen homespuns have we swagg’ring here
FTLN 0880 So near the cradle of the Fairy Queen?
FTLN 0881 What, a play toward? I’ll be an auditor—
FTLN 0882 An actor too perhaps, if I see cause.
QUINCE  FTLN 088380Speak, Pyramus.—Thisbe, stand forth.
BOTTOM , as Pyramus 
FTLN 0884 Thisbe, the flowers of odious savors sweet—
QUINCE  FTLN 0885Odors, editorial emendationodors!editorial emendation
BOTTOM , as Pyramus 
FTLN 0886  …odors savors sweet.
FTLN 0887 So hath thy breath, my dearest Thisbe dear.—
FTLN 088885 But hark, a voice! Stay thou but here awhile,
FTLN 0889 And by and by I will to thee appear.
He exits.
editorial emendationROBIN , asideeditorial emendation 
FTLN 0890 A stranger Pyramus than e’er played here. editorial emendationHe exits.editorial emendation

75
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 3. SC. 1

FLUTE  FTLN 0891Must I speak now?
QUINCE  FTLN 0892Ay, marry, must you, for you must understand
FTLN 089390 he goes but to see a noise that he heard and is to
FTLN 0894 come again.
FLUTE , as Thisbe 
FTLN 0895 Most radiant Pyramus, most lily-white of hue,
FTLN 0896 Of color like the red rose on triumphant brier,
FTLN 0897 Most brisky juvenal and eke most lovely Jew,
FTLN 089895 As true as truest horse, that yet would never tire.
FTLN 0899 I’ll meet thee, Pyramus, at Ninny’s tomb.

QUINCE  FTLN 0900“Ninus’ tomb,” man! Why, you must not
FTLN 0901 speak that yet. That you answer to Pyramus. You
FTLN 0902 speak all your part at once, cues and all.—Pyramus,
FTLN 0903100 enter. Your cue is past. It is “never tire.”
FLUTE  FTLN 0904O!
FTLN 0905  editorial emendationAs Thisbe.editorial emendation As true as truest horse, that yet would never
FTLN 0906  tire.


editorial emendationEnter Robin, and Bottom as Pyramus with the
ass-head.editorial emendation


BOTTOM , as Pyramus 
FTLN 0907 If I were fair, editorial emendationfaireditorial emendation Thisbe, I were only thine.
QUINCE  FTLN 0908105O monstrous! O strange! We are haunted. Pray,
FTLN 0909 masters, fly, masters! Help!
editorial emendationQuince, Flute, Snout, Snug, and Starveling exit.editorial emendation
ROBIN 
FTLN 0910 I’ll follow you. I’ll lead you about a round,
FTLN 0911  Through bog, through bush, through brake,
FTLN 0912  through brier.
FTLN 0913110 Sometime a horse I’ll be, sometime a hound,
FTLN 0914  A hog, a headless bear, sometime a fire,
FTLN 0915 And neigh, and bark, and grunt, and roar, and burn,
FTLN 0916 Like horse, hound, hog, bear, fire, at every turn.
He exits.
BOTTOM  FTLN 0917Why do they run away? This is a knavery of
FTLN 0918115 them to make me afeard.

77
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 3. SC. 1

Enter Snout.

SNOUT  FTLN 0919O Bottom, thou art changed! What do I see on
FTLN 0920 thee?
BOTTOM  FTLN 0921What do you see? You see an ass-head of your
FTLN 0922 own, do you? editorial emendationSnout exits.editorial emendation

Enter Quince.

QUINCE  FTLN 0923120Bless thee, Bottom, bless thee! Thou art
FTLN 0924 translated! He exits.
BOTTOM  FTLN 0925I see their knavery. This is to make an ass of
FTLN 0926 me, to fright me, if they could. But I will not stir
FTLN 0927 from this place, do what they can. I will walk up
FTLN 0928125 and down here, and I will sing, that they shall hear
FTLN 0929 I am not afraid.
editorial emendationHe sings.editorial emendation FTLN 0930 The ouzel cock, so black of hue,
FTLN 0931  With orange-tawny bill,
FTLN 0932 The throstle with his note so true,
FTLN 0933130  The wren with little quill—

TITANIA , editorial emendationwaking upeditorial emendation 
FTLN 0934 What angel wakes me from my flow’ry bed?
BOTTOM  editorial emendationsingseditorial emendation 
FTLN 0935 The finch, the sparrow, and the lark,
FTLN 0936  The plainsong cuckoo gray,
FTLN 0937 Whose note full many a man doth mark
FTLN 0938135  And dares not answer “nay”—

FTLN 0939 for, indeed, who would set his wit to so foolish a
FTLN 0940 bird? Who would give a bird the lie though he cry
FTLN 0941 “cuckoo” never so?
TITANIA 
FTLN 0942 I pray thee, gentle mortal, sing again.
FTLN 0943140 Mine ear is much enamored of thy note,
FTLN 0944 So is mine eye enthrallèd to thy shape,
FTLN 0945 And thy fair virtue’s force perforce doth move me
FTLN 0946 On the first view to say, to swear, I love thee.
BOTTOM  FTLN 0947Methinks, mistress, you should have little

79
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 3. SC. 1

FTLN 0948145 reason for that. And yet, to say the truth, reason
FTLN 0949 and love keep little company together nowadays.
FTLN 0950 The more the pity that some honest neighbors will
FTLN 0951 not make them friends. Nay, I can gleek upon
FTLN 0952 occasion.
TITANIA 
FTLN 0953150 Thou art as wise as thou art beautiful.
BOTTOM  FTLN 0954Not so neither; but if I had wit enough to get
FTLN 0955 out of this wood, I have enough to serve mine own
FTLN 0956 turn.
TITANIA 
FTLN 0957 Out of this wood do not desire to go.
FTLN 0958155 Thou shalt remain here whether thou wilt or no.
FTLN 0959 I am a spirit of no common rate.
FTLN 0960 The summer still doth tend upon my state,
FTLN 0961 And I do love thee. Therefore go with me.
FTLN 0962 I’ll give thee fairies to attend on thee,
FTLN 0963160 And they shall fetch thee jewels from the deep
FTLN 0964 And sing while thou on pressèd flowers dost sleep.
FTLN 0965 And I will purge thy mortal grossness so
FTLN 0966 That thou shalt like an airy spirit go.—
FTLN 0967 Peaseblossom, Cobweb, Mote, and Mustardseed!

Enter four Fairies: editorial emendationPeaseblossom, Cobweb,
Mote, and Mustardseed.editorial emendation


editorial emendationPEASEBLOSSOMeditorial emendation  FTLN 0968165Ready.
editorial emendationCOBWEBeditorial emendation  FTLN 0969And I.
editorial emendationMOTEeditorial emendation  FTLN 0970And I.
editorial emendationMUSTARDSEEDeditorial emendation  FTLN 0971And I.
editorial emendationALLeditorial emendation  FTLN 0972Where shall we go?
TITANIA 
FTLN 0973170 Be kind and courteous to this gentleman.
FTLN 0974 Hop in his walks and gambol in his eyes;
FTLN 0975 Feed him with apricocks and dewberries,
FTLN 0976 With purple grapes, green figs, and mulberries;
FTLN 0977 The honey-bags steal from the humble-bees,

81
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 3. SC. 1

FTLN 0978175 And for night-tapers crop their waxen thighs
FTLN 0979 And light them at the fiery glowworms’ eyes
FTLN 0980 To have my love to bed and to arise;
FTLN 0981 And pluck the wings from painted butterflies
FTLN 0982 To fan the moonbeams from his sleeping eyes.
FTLN 0983180 Nod to him, elves, and do him courtesies.
editorial emendationPEASEBLOSSOMeditorial emendation  FTLN 0984Hail, mortal!
editorial emendationCOBWEBeditorial emendation  FTLN 0985Hail!
editorial emendationMOTEeditorial emendation  FTLN 0986Hail!
editorial emendationMUSTARDSEEDeditorial emendation  FTLN 0987Hail!
BOTTOM  FTLN 0988185I cry your Worships mercy, heartily.—I beseech
FTLN 0989 your Worship’s name.
COBWEB  FTLN 0990Cobweb.
BOTTOM  FTLN 0991I shall desire you of more acquaintance, good
FTLN 0992 Master Cobweb. If I cut my finger, I shall make
FTLN 0993190 bold with you.—Your name, honest gentleman?
PEASEBLOSSOM  FTLN 0994Peaseblossom.
BOTTOM  FTLN 0995I pray you, commend me to Mistress Squash,
FTLN 0996 your mother, and to Master Peascod, your father.
FTLN 0997 Good Master Peaseblossom, I shall desire you of
FTLN 0998195 more acquaintance, too.—Your name, I beseech
FTLN 0999 you, sir?
MUSTARDSEED  FTLN 1000Mustardseed.
BOTTOM  FTLN 1001Good Master Mustardseed, I know your patience
FTLN 1002 well. That same cowardly, giantlike ox-beef
FTLN 1003200 hath devoured many a gentleman of your house. I
FTLN 1004 promise you, your kindred hath made my eyes
FTLN 1005 water ere now. I desire you editorial emendationofeditorial emendation more acquaintance,
FTLN 1006 good Master Mustardseed.
TITANIA 
FTLN 1007 Come, wait upon him. Lead him to my bower.
FTLN 1008205  The moon, methinks, looks with a wat’ry eye,
FTLN 1009 And when she weeps, weeps every little flower,
FTLN 1010  Lamenting some enforcèd chastity.
FTLN 1011 Tie up my lover’s tongue. Bring him silently.
editorial emendationTheyeditorial emendation exit.




83
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 3. SC. 2

editorial emendationScene 2editorial emendation
Enter editorial emendationOberon,editorial emendation King of Fairies.

OBERON 
FTLN 1012 I wonder if Titania be awaked;
FTLN 1013 Then what it was that next came in her eye,
FTLN 1014 Which she must dote on in extremity.

editorial emendationEnter Robin Goodfellow.editorial emendation

FTLN 1015 Here comes my messenger. How now, mad spirit?
FTLN 10165 What night-rule now about this haunted grove?
ROBIN 
FTLN 1017 My mistress with a monster is in love.
FTLN 1018 Near to her close and consecrated bower,
FTLN 1019 While she was in her dull and sleeping hour,
FTLN 1020 A crew of patches, rude mechanicals,
FTLN 102110 That work for bread upon Athenian stalls,
FTLN 1022 Were met together to rehearse a play
FTLN 1023 Intended for great Theseus’ nuptial day.
FTLN 1024 The shallowest thick-skin of that barren sort,
FTLN 1025 Who Pyramus presented in their sport,
FTLN 102615 Forsook his scene and entered in a brake.
FTLN 1027 When I did him at this advantage take,
FTLN 1028 An ass’s noll I fixèd on his head.
FTLN 1029 Anon his Thisbe must be answerèd,
FTLN 1030 And forth my editorial emendationmimiceditorial emendation comes. When they him spy,
FTLN 103120 As wild geese that the creeping fowler eye,
FTLN 1032 Or russet-pated choughs, many in sort,
FTLN 1033 Rising and cawing at the gun’s report,
FTLN 1034 Sever themselves and madly sweep the sky,
FTLN 1035 So at his sight away his fellows fly,
FTLN 103625 And, at our stamp, here o’er and o’er one falls.
FTLN 1037 He “Murder” cries and help from Athens calls.
FTLN 1038 Their sense thus weak, lost with their fears thus
FTLN 1039 strong,
FTLN 1040 Made senseless things begin to do them wrong;

85
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 3. SC. 2

FTLN 104130 For briers and thorns at their apparel snatch,
FTLN 1042 Some sleeves, some hats, from yielders all things
FTLN 1043 catch.
FTLN 1044 I led them on in this distracted fear
FTLN 1045 And left sweet Pyramus translated there.
FTLN 104635 When in that moment, so it came to pass,
FTLN 1047 Titania waked and straightway loved an ass.
OBERON 
FTLN 1048 This falls out better than I could devise.
FTLN 1049 But hast thou yet latched the Athenian’s eyes
FTLN 1050 With the love juice, as I did bid thee do?
ROBIN 
FTLN 105140 I took him sleeping—that is finished, too—
FTLN 1052 And the Athenian woman by his side,
FTLN 1053 That, when he waked, of force she must be eyed.

Enter Demetrius and Hermia.

OBERON 
FTLN 1054 Stand close. This is the same Athenian.
ROBIN 
FTLN 1055 This is the woman, but not this the man.
editorial emendationThey step aside.editorial emendation
DEMETRIUS 
FTLN 105645 O, why rebuke you him that loves you so?
FTLN 1057 Lay breath so bitter on your bitter foe!
HERMIA 
FTLN 1058 Now I but chide, but I should use thee worse,
FTLN 1059 For thou, I fear, hast given me cause to curse.
FTLN 1060 If thou hast slain Lysander in his sleep,
FTLN 106150 Being o’er shoes in blood, plunge in the deep
FTLN 1062 And kill me too.
FTLN 1063 The sun was not so true unto the day
FTLN 1064 As he to me. Would he have stolen away
FTLN 1065 From sleeping Hermia? I’ll believe as soon
FTLN 106655 This whole Earth may be bored, and that the moon
FTLN 1067 May through the center creep and so displease

87
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 3. SC. 2

FTLN 1068 Her brother’s noontide with th’ Antipodes.
FTLN 1069 It cannot be but thou hast murdered him.
FTLN 1070 So should a murderer look, so dead, so grim.
DEMETRIUS 
FTLN 107160 So should the murdered look, and so should I,
FTLN 1072 Pierced through the heart with your stern cruelty.
FTLN 1073 Yet you, the murderer, look as bright, as clear,
FTLN 1074 As yonder Venus in her glimmering sphere.
HERMIA 
FTLN 1075 What’s this to my Lysander? Where is he?
FTLN 107665 Ah, good Demetrius, wilt thou give him me?
DEMETRIUS 
FTLN 1077 I had rather give his carcass to my hounds.
HERMIA 
FTLN 1078 Out, dog! Out, cur! Thou driv’st me past the bounds
FTLN 1079 Of maiden’s patience. Hast thou slain him, then?
FTLN 1080 Henceforth be never numbered among men.
FTLN 108170 O, once tell true! Tell true, even for my sake!
FTLN 1082 Durst thou have looked upon him, being awake?
FTLN 1083 And hast thou killed him sleeping? O brave touch!
FTLN 1084 Could not a worm, an adder, do so much?
FTLN 1085 An adder did it, for with doubler tongue
FTLN 108675 Than thine, thou serpent, never adder stung.
DEMETRIUS 
FTLN 1087 You spend your passion on a misprised mood.
FTLN 1088 I am not guilty of Lysander’s blood,
FTLN 1089 Nor is he dead, for aught that I can tell.
HERMIA 
FTLN 1090 I pray thee, tell me then that he is well.
DEMETRIUS 
FTLN 109180 An if I could, what should I get therefor?
HERMIA 
FTLN 1092 A privilege never to see me more.
FTLN 1093 And from thy hated presence part I editorial emendationso.editorial emendation
FTLN 1094 See me no more, whether he be dead or no.
She exits.

89
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 3. SC. 2

DEMETRIUS 
FTLN 1095 There is no following her in this fierce vein.
FTLN 109685 Here, therefore, for a while I will remain.
FTLN 1097 So sorrow’s heaviness doth heavier grow
FTLN 1098 For debt that bankrout editorial emendationsleepeditorial emendation doth sorrow owe,
FTLN 1099 Which now in some slight measure it will pay,
FTLN 1100 If for his tender here I make some stay.
editorial emendationHeeditorial emendation lies down editorial emendationand falls asleep.editorial emendation
OBERON , editorial emendationto Robineditorial emendation 
FTLN 110190 What hast thou done? Thou hast mistaken quite
FTLN 1102 And laid the love juice on some true-love’s sight.
FTLN 1103 Of thy misprision must perforce ensue
FTLN 1104 Some true-love turned, and not a false turned true.
ROBIN 
FTLN 1105 Then fate o’errules, that, one man holding troth,
FTLN 110695 A million fail, confounding oath on oath.
OBERON 
FTLN 1107 About the wood go swifter than the wind,
FTLN 1108 And Helena of Athens look thou find.
FTLN 1109 All fancy-sick she is and pale of cheer
FTLN 1110 With sighs of love that costs the fresh blood dear.
FTLN 1111100 By some illusion see thou bring her here.
FTLN 1112 I’ll charm his eyes against she do appear.
ROBIN  FTLN 1113I go, I go, look how I go,
FTLN 1114 Swifter than arrow from the Tartar’s bow. editorial emendationHe exits.editorial emendation
OBERON , editorial emendationapplying the nectar to Demetrius’ eyeseditorial emendation 
FTLN 1115  Flower of this purple dye,
FTLN 1116105  Hit with Cupid’s archery,
FTLN 1117  Sink in apple of his eye.
FTLN 1118  When his love he doth espy,
FTLN 1119  Let her shine as gloriously
FTLN 1120  As the Venus of the sky.—
FTLN 1121110  When thou wak’st, if she be by,
FTLN 1122  Beg of her for remedy.


Enter editorial emendationRobin.editorial emendation


91
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 3. SC. 2

ROBIN 
FTLN 1123  Captain of our fairy band,
FTLN 1124  Helena is here at hand,
FTLN 1125  And the youth, mistook by me,
FTLN 1126115  Pleading for a lover’s fee.
FTLN 1127  Shall we their fond pageant see?
FTLN 1128  Lord, what fools these mortals be!

OBERON 
FTLN 1129  Stand aside. The noise they make
FTLN 1130  Will cause Demetrius to awake.

ROBIN 
FTLN 1131120  Then will two at once woo one.
FTLN 1132  That must needs be sport alone.
FTLN 1133  And those things do best please me
FTLN 1134  That befall prepost’rously.

editorial emendationThey step aside.editorial emendation

Enter Lysander and Helena.

LYSANDER 
FTLN 1135 Why should you think that I should woo in scorn?
FTLN 1136125  Scorn and derision never come in tears.
FTLN 1137 Look when I vow, I weep; and vows so born,
FTLN 1138  In their nativity all truth appears.
FTLN 1139 How can these things in me seem scorn to you,
FTLN 1140 Bearing the badge of faith to prove them true?
HELENA 
FTLN 1141130 You do advance your cunning more and more.
FTLN 1142  When truth kills truth, O devilish holy fray!
FTLN 1143 These vows are Hermia’s. Will you give her o’er?
FTLN 1144  Weigh oath with oath, and you will nothing
FTLN 1145  weigh.
FTLN 1146135 Your vows to her and me, put in two scales,
FTLN 1147 Will even weigh, and both as light as tales.
LYSANDER 
FTLN 1148 I had no judgment when to her I swore.
HELENA 
FTLN 1149 Nor none, in my mind, now you give her o’er.

93
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 3. SC. 2

LYSANDER 
FTLN 1150 Demetrius loves her, and he loves not you.
DEMETRIUS , editorial emendationwaking upeditorial emendation 
FTLN 1151140 O Helen, goddess, nymph, perfect, divine!
FTLN 1152 To what, my love, shall I compare thine eyne?
FTLN 1153 Crystal is muddy. O, how ripe in show
FTLN 1154 Thy lips, those kissing cherries, tempting grow!
FTLN 1155 That pure congealèd white, high Taurus’ snow,
FTLN 1156145 Fanned with the eastern wind, turns to a crow
FTLN 1157 When thou hold’st up thy hand. O, let me kiss
FTLN 1158 This princess of pure white, this seal of bliss!
HELENA 
FTLN 1159 O spite! O hell! I see you all are bent
FTLN 1160 To set against me for your merriment.
FTLN 1161150 If you were civil and knew courtesy,
FTLN 1162 You would not do me thus much injury.
FTLN 1163 Can you not hate me, as I know you do,
FTLN 1164 But you must join in souls to mock me too?
FTLN 1165 If you were men, as men you are in show,
FTLN 1166155 You would not use a gentle lady so,
FTLN 1167 To vow and swear and superpraise my parts,
FTLN 1168 When, I am sure, you hate me with your hearts.
FTLN 1169 You both are rivals and love Hermia,
FTLN 1170 And now both rivals to mock Helena.
FTLN 1171160 A trim exploit, a manly enterprise,
FTLN 1172 To conjure tears up in a poor maid’s eyes
FTLN 1173 With your derision! None of noble sort
FTLN 1174 Would so offend a virgin and extort
FTLN 1175 A poor soul’s patience, all to make you sport.
LYSANDER 
FTLN 1176165 You are unkind, Demetrius. Be not so,
FTLN 1177 For you love Hermia; this you know I know.
FTLN 1178 And here with all goodwill, with all my heart,
FTLN 1179 In Hermia’s love I yield you up my part.
FTLN 1180 And yours of Helena to me bequeath,
FTLN 1181170 Whom I do love and will do till my death.

95
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 3. SC. 2

HELENA 
FTLN 1182 Never did mockers waste more idle breath.
DEMETRIUS 
FTLN 1183 Lysander, keep thy Hermia. I will none.
FTLN 1184 If e’er I loved her, all that love is gone.
FTLN 1185 My heart to her but as guest-wise sojourned,
FTLN 1186175 And now to Helen is it home returned,
FTLN 1187 There to remain.
LYSANDER  FTLN 1188 Helen, it is not so.
DEMETRIUS 
FTLN 1189 Disparage not the faith thou dost not know,
FTLN 1190 Lest to thy peril thou aby it dear.
FTLN 1191180 Look where thy love comes. Yonder is thy dear.

Enter Hermia.

HERMIA , editorial emendationto Lysandereditorial emendation 
FTLN 1192 Dark night, that from the eye his function takes,
FTLN 1193 The ear more quick of apprehension makes;
FTLN 1194 Wherein it doth impair the seeing sense,
FTLN 1195 It pays the hearing double recompense.
FTLN 1196185 Thou art not by mine eye, Lysander, found;
FTLN 1197 Mine ear, I thank it, brought me to thy sound.
FTLN 1198 But why unkindly didst thou leave me so?
LYSANDER 
FTLN 1199 Why should he stay whom love doth press to go?
HERMIA 
FTLN 1200 What love could press Lysander from my side?
LYSANDER 
FTLN 1201190 Lysander’s love, that would not let him bide,
FTLN 1202 Fair Helena, who more engilds the night
FTLN 1203 Than all yon fiery oes and eyes of light.
FTLN 1204 Why seek’st thou me? Could not this make thee
FTLN 1205 know
FTLN 1206195 The hate I bear thee made me leave thee so?
HERMIA 
FTLN 1207 You speak not as you think. It cannot be.

97
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 3. SC. 2

HELENA 
FTLN 1208 Lo, she is one of this confederacy!
FTLN 1209 Now I perceive they have conjoined all three
FTLN 1210 To fashion this false sport in spite of me.—
FTLN 1211200 Injurious Hermia, most ungrateful maid,
FTLN 1212 Have you conspired, have you with these contrived,
FTLN 1213 To bait me with this foul derision?
FTLN 1214 Is all the counsel that we two have shared,
FTLN 1215 The sisters’ vows, the hours that we have spent
FTLN 1216205 When we have chid the hasty-footed time
FTLN 1217 For parting us—O, is all forgot?
FTLN 1218 All schooldays’ friendship, childhood innocence?
FTLN 1219 We, Hermia, like two artificial gods,
FTLN 1220 Have with our needles created both one flower,
FTLN 1221210 Both on one sampler, sitting on one cushion,
FTLN 1222 Both warbling of one song, both in one key,
FTLN 1223 As if our hands, our sides, voices, and minds
FTLN 1224 Had been incorporate. So we grew together
FTLN 1225 Like to a double cherry, seeming parted,
FTLN 1226215 But yet an union in partition,
FTLN 1227 Two lovely berries molded on one stem;
FTLN 1228 So with two seeming bodies but one heart,
FTLN 1229 Two of the first, editorial emendationlikeeditorial emendation coats in heraldry,
FTLN 1230 Due but to one, and crownèd with one crest.
FTLN 1231220 And will you rent our ancient love asunder,
FTLN 1232 To join with men in scorning your poor friend?
FTLN 1233 It is not friendly; ’tis not maidenly.
FTLN 1234 Our sex, as well as I, may chide you for it,
FTLN 1235 Though I alone do feel the injury.
HERMIA 
FTLN 1236225 I am amazèd at your words.
FTLN 1237 I scorn you not. It seems that you scorn me.
HELENA 
FTLN 1238 Have you not set Lysander, as in scorn,
FTLN 1239 To follow me and praise my eyes and face,
FTLN 1240 And made your other love, Demetrius,

99
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 3. SC. 2

FTLN 1241230 Who even but now did spurn me with his foot,
FTLN 1242 To call me goddess, nymph, divine and rare,
FTLN 1243 Precious, celestial? Wherefore speaks he this
FTLN 1244 To her he hates? And wherefore doth Lysander
FTLN 1245 Deny your love (so rich within his soul)
FTLN 1246235 And tender me, forsooth, affection,
FTLN 1247 But by your setting on, by your consent?
FTLN 1248 What though I be not so in grace as you,
FTLN 1249 So hung upon with love, so fortunate,
FTLN 1250 But miserable most, to love unloved?
FTLN 1251240 This you should pity rather than despise.
HERMIA 
FTLN 1252 I understand not what you mean by this.
HELENA 
FTLN 1253 Ay, do. Persever, counterfeit sad looks,
FTLN 1254 Make mouths upon me when I turn my back,
FTLN 1255 Wink each at other, hold the sweet jest up.
FTLN 1256245 This sport, well carried, shall be chronicled.
FTLN 1257 If you have any pity, grace, or manners,
FTLN 1258 You would not make me such an argument.
FTLN 1259 But fare you well. ’Tis partly my own fault,
FTLN 1260 Which death or absence soon shall remedy.
LYSANDER 
FTLN 1261250 Stay, gentle Helena. Hear my excuse,
FTLN 1262 My love, my life, my soul, fair Helena.
HELENA 
FTLN 1263 O excellent!
HERMIA , editorial emendationto Lysandereditorial emendation 
FTLN 1264 Sweet, do not scorn her so.
DEMETRIUS , editorial emendationto Lysandereditorial emendation 
FTLN 1265 If she cannot entreat, I can compel.
LYSANDER 
FTLN 1266255 Thou canst compel no more than she entreat.
FTLN 1267 Thy threats have no more strength than her weak
FTLN 1268 editorial emendationprayers.editorial emendation
FTLN 1269 Helen, I love thee. By my life, I do.

101
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 3. SC. 2

FTLN 1270 I swear by that which I will lose for thee,
FTLN 1271260 To prove him false that says I love thee not.
DEMETRIUS 
FTLN 1272 I say I love thee more than he can do.
LYSANDER 
FTLN 1273 If thou say so, withdraw and prove it too.
DEMETRIUS 
FTLN 1274 Quick, come.
HERMIA  FTLN 1275 Lysander, whereto tends all this?
editorial emendationShe takes hold of Lysander.editorial emendation
LYSANDER 
FTLN 1276265 Away, you Ethiop!
DEMETRIUS , editorial emendationto Hermiaeditorial emendation 
FTLN 1277 No, no. He’ll
FTLN 1278 Seem to break loose.  editorial emendationTo Lysander.editorial emendation Take on as you
FTLN 1279 would follow,
FTLN 1280 But yet come not. You are a tame man, go!
LYSANDER , editorial emendationto Hermiaeditorial emendation 
FTLN 1281270 Hang off, thou cat, thou burr! Vile thing, let loose,
FTLN 1282 Or I will shake thee from me like a serpent.
HERMIA 
FTLN 1283 Why are you grown so rude? What change is this,
FTLN 1284 Sweet love?
LYSANDER  FTLN 1285 Thy love? Out, tawny Tartar, out!
FTLN 1286275 Out, loathèd med’cine! O, hated potion, hence!
HERMIA 
FTLN 1287 Do you not jest?
HELENA  FTLN 1288 Yes, sooth, and so do you.
LYSANDER 
FTLN 1289 Demetrius, I will keep my word with thee.
DEMETRIUS 
FTLN 1290 I would I had your bond. For I perceive
FTLN 1291280 A weak bond holds you. I’ll not trust your word.
LYSANDER 
FTLN 1292 What? Should I hurt her, strike her, kill her dead?
FTLN 1293 Although I hate her, I’ll not harm her so.

103
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 3. SC. 2

HERMIA 
FTLN 1294 What, can you do me greater harm than hate?
FTLN 1295 Hate me? Wherefore? O me, what news, my love?
FTLN 1296285 Am not I Hermia? Are not you Lysander?
FTLN 1297 I am as fair now as I was erewhile.
FTLN 1298 Since night you loved me; yet since night you left
FTLN 1299 me.
FTLN 1300 Why, then, you left me—O, the gods forbid!—
FTLN 1301290 In earnest, shall I say?
LYSANDER  FTLN 1302 Ay, by my life,
FTLN 1303 And never did desire to see thee more.
FTLN 1304 Therefore be out of hope, of question, of doubt.
FTLN 1305 Be certain, nothing truer, ’tis no jest
FTLN 1306295 That I do hate thee and love Helena.
editorial emendationHermia turns him loose.editorial emendation
HERMIA 
FTLN 1307 O me!  editorial emendationTo Helena.editorial emendation You juggler, you cankerblossom,
FTLN 1308 You thief of love! What, have you come by night
FTLN 1309 And stol’n my love’s heart from him?
HELENA  FTLN 1310 Fine, i’ faith.
FTLN 1311300 Have you no modesty, no maiden shame,
FTLN 1312 No touch of bashfulness? What, will you tear
FTLN 1313 Impatient answers from my gentle tongue?
FTLN 1314 Fie, fie, you counterfeit, you puppet, you!
HERMIA 
FTLN 1315 “Puppet”? Why so? Ay, that way goes the game.
FTLN 1316305 Now I perceive that she hath made compare
FTLN 1317 Between our statures; she hath urged her height,
FTLN 1318 And with her personage, her tall personage,
FTLN 1319 Her height, forsooth, she hath prevailed with him.
FTLN 1320 And are you grown so high in his esteem
FTLN 1321310 Because I am so dwarfish and so low?
FTLN 1322 How low am I, thou painted maypole? Speak!
FTLN 1323 How low am I? I am not yet so low
FTLN 1324 But that my nails can reach unto thine eyes.

105
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 3. SC. 2

HELENA 
FTLN 1325 I pray you, though you mock me, editorial emendationgentlemen,editorial emendation
FTLN 1326315 Let her not hurt me. I was never curst;
FTLN 1327 I have no gift at all in shrewishness.
FTLN 1328 I am a right maid for my cowardice.
FTLN 1329 Let her not strike me. You perhaps may think,
FTLN 1330 Because she is something lower than myself,
FTLN 1331320 That I can match her.
HERMIA  FTLN 1332 “Lower”? Hark, again!
HELENA 
FTLN 1333 Good Hermia, do not be so bitter with me.
FTLN 1334 I evermore did love you, Hermia,
FTLN 1335 Did ever keep your counsels, never wronged you—
FTLN 1336325 Save that, in love unto Demetrius,
FTLN 1337 I told him of your stealth unto this wood.
FTLN 1338 He followed you; for love, I followed him.
FTLN 1339 But he hath chid me hence and threatened me
FTLN 1340 To strike me, spurn me, nay, to kill me too.
FTLN 1341330 And now, so you will let me quiet go,
FTLN 1342 To Athens will I bear my folly back
FTLN 1343 And follow you no further. Let me go.
FTLN 1344 You see how simple and how fond I am.
HERMIA 
FTLN 1345 Why, get you gone. Who is ’t that hinders you?
HELENA 
FTLN 1346335 A foolish heart that I leave here behind.
HERMIA 
FTLN 1347 What, with Lysander?
HELENA  FTLN 1348 With Demetrius.
LYSANDER 
FTLN 1349 Be not afraid. She shall not harm thee, Helena.
DEMETRIUS 
FTLN 1350 No, sir, she shall not, though you take her part.
HELENA 
FTLN 1351340 O, when she is angry, she is keen and shrewd.
FTLN 1352 She was a vixen when she went to school,
FTLN 1353 And though she be but little, she is fierce.

107
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 3. SC. 2

HERMIA 
FTLN 1354 “Little” again? Nothing editorial emendationbuteditorial emendation “low” and “little”?
FTLN 1355 Why will you suffer her to flout me thus?
FTLN 1356345 Let me come to her.
LYSANDER  FTLN 1357 Get you gone, you dwarf,
FTLN 1358 You minimus of hind’ring knotgrass made,
FTLN 1359 You bead, you acorn—
DEMETRIUS  FTLN 1360 You are too officious
FTLN 1361350 In her behalf that scorns your services.
FTLN 1362 Let her alone. Speak not of Helena.
FTLN 1363 Take not her part. For if thou dost intend
FTLN 1364 Never so little show of love to her,
FTLN 1365 Thou shalt aby it.
LYSANDER  FTLN 1366355 Now she holds me not.
FTLN 1367 Now follow, if thou dar’st, to try whose right,
FTLN 1368 Of thine or mine, is most in Helena.
DEMETRIUS 
FTLN 1369 “Follow”? Nay, I’ll go with thee, cheek by jowl.
editorial emendationDemetrius and Lysander exit.editorial emendation
HERMIA 
FTLN 1370 You, mistress, all this coil is long of you.
editorial emendationHelena retreats.editorial emendation
FTLN 1371360 Nay, go not back.
HELENA  FTLN 1372 I will not trust you, I,
FTLN 1373 Nor longer stay in your curst company.
FTLN 1374 Your hands than mine are quicker for a fray.
FTLN 1375 My legs are longer though, to run away. editorial emendationShe exits.editorial emendation
HERMIA 
FTLN 1376365 I am amazed and know not what to say. editorial emendationShe exits.editorial emendation
OBERON , editorial emendationto Robineditorial emendation 
FTLN 1377 This is thy negligence. Still thou mistak’st,
FTLN 1378 Or else committ’st thy knaveries willfully.
ROBIN 
FTLN 1379 Believe me, king of shadows, I mistook.
FTLN 1380 Did not you tell me I should know the man
FTLN 1381370 By the Athenian garments he had on?

109
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 3. SC. 2

FTLN 1382 And so far blameless proves my enterprise
FTLN 1383 That I have ’nointed an Athenian’s eyes;
FTLN 1384 And so far am I glad it so did sort,
FTLN 1385 As this their jangling I esteem a sport.
OBERON 
FTLN 1386375 Thou seest these lovers seek a place to fight.
FTLN 1387 Hie, therefore, Robin, overcast the night;
FTLN 1388 The starry welkin cover thou anon
FTLN 1389 With drooping fog as black as Acheron,
FTLN 1390 And lead these testy rivals so astray
FTLN 1391380 As one come not within another’s way.
FTLN 1392 Like to Lysander sometime frame thy tongue;
FTLN 1393 Then stir Demetrius up with bitter wrong.
FTLN 1394 And sometime rail thou like Demetrius.
FTLN 1395 And from each other look thou lead them thus,
FTLN 1396385 Till o’er their brows death-counterfeiting sleep
FTLN 1397 With leaden legs and batty wings doth creep.
FTLN 1398 Then crush this herb into Lysander’s eye,
editorial emendationHe gives a flower to Robin.editorial emendation
FTLN 1399 Whose liquor hath this virtuous property,
FTLN 1400 To take from thence all error with his might
FTLN 1401390 And make his eyeballs roll with wonted sight.
FTLN 1402 When they next wake, all this derision
FTLN 1403 Shall seem a dream and fruitless vision.
FTLN 1404 And back to Athens shall the lovers wend,
FTLN 1405 With league whose date till death shall never end.
FTLN 1406395 Whiles I in this affair do thee employ,
FTLN 1407 I’ll to my queen and beg her Indian boy;
FTLN 1408 And then I will her charmèd eye release
FTLN 1409 From monster’s view, and all things shall be peace.
ROBIN 
FTLN 1410 My fairy lord, this must be done with haste,
FTLN 1411400 For night’s swift dragons cut the clouds full fast,
FTLN 1412 And yonder shines Aurora’s harbinger,
FTLN 1413 At whose approach, ghosts wand’ring here and
FTLN 1414 there

111
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 3. SC. 2

FTLN 1415 Troop home to churchyards. Damnèd spirits all,
FTLN 1416405 That in crossways and floods have burial,
FTLN 1417 Already to their wormy beds are gone.
FTLN 1418 For fear lest day should look their shames upon,
FTLN 1419 They willfully themselves exile from light
FTLN 1420 And must for aye consort with black-browed night.
OBERON 
FTLN 1421410 But we are spirits of another sort.
FTLN 1422 I with the Morning’s love have oft made sport
FTLN 1423 And, like a forester, the groves may tread
FTLN 1424 Even till the eastern gate, all fiery red,
FTLN 1425 Opening on Neptune with fair blessèd beams,
FTLN 1426415 Turns into yellow gold his salt-green streams.
FTLN 1427 But notwithstanding, haste! Make no delay.
FTLN 1428 We may effect this business yet ere day. editorial emendationHe exits.editorial emendation
ROBIN 
FTLN 1429  Up and down, up and down,
FTLN 1430  I will lead them up and down.
FTLN 1431420  I am feared in field and town.
FTLN 1432  Goblin, lead them up and down.

FTLN 1433 Here comes one.

Enter Lysander.

LYSANDER 
FTLN 1434 Where art thou, proud Demetrius? Speak thou now.
ROBIN , editorial emendationin Demetrius’ voiceeditorial emendation 
FTLN 1435 Here, villain, drawn and ready. Where art thou?
LYSANDER  FTLN 1436425I will be with thee straight.
ROBIN , editorial emendationin Demetrius’ voiceeditorial emendation  FTLN 1437Follow me, then, to
FTLN 1438 plainer ground. editorial emendationLysander exits.editorial emendation

Enter Demetrius.

DEMETRIUS  FTLN 1439Lysander, speak again.
FTLN 1440 Thou runaway, thou coward, art thou fled?
FTLN 1441430 Speak! In some bush? Where dost thou hide thy
FTLN 1442 head?

113
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 3. SC. 2

ROBIN , editorial emendationin Lysander’s voiceeditorial emendation 
FTLN 1443 Thou coward, art thou bragging to the stars,
FTLN 1444 Telling the bushes that thou look’st for wars,
FTLN 1445 And wilt not come? Come, recreant! Come, thou
FTLN 1446435 child!
FTLN 1447 I’ll whip thee with a rod. He is defiled
FTLN 1448 That draws a sword on thee.
DEMETRIUS  FTLN 1449 Yea, art thou there?
ROBIN , editorial emendationin Lysander’s voiceeditorial emendation 
FTLN 1450 Follow my voice. We’ll try no manhood here.
editorial emendationThey exit.editorial emendation

editorial emendationEnter Lysander.editorial emendation

LYSANDER 
FTLN 1451440 He goes before me and still dares me on.
FTLN 1452 When I come where he calls, then he is gone.
FTLN 1453 The villain is much lighter-heeled than I.
FTLN 1454 I followed fast, but faster he did fly,
FTLN 1455 That fallen am I in dark uneven way,
FTLN 1456445 And here will rest me. Come, thou gentle day,
FTLN 1457 For if but once thou show me thy gray light,
FTLN 1458 I’ll find Demetrius and revenge this spite.
editorial emendationHe lies down and sleeps.editorial emendation

editorial emendationEntereditorial emendation Robin and Demetrius.

ROBIN , editorial emendationin Lysander’s voiceeditorial emendation 
FTLN 1459 Ho, ho, ho! Coward, why com’st thou not?
DEMETRIUS 
FTLN 1460 Abide me, if thou dar’st, for well I wot
FTLN 1461450 Thou runn’st before me, shifting every place,
FTLN 1462 And dar’st not stand nor look me in the face.
FTLN 1463 Where art thou now?
ROBIN , editorial emendationin Lysander’s voiceeditorial emendation 
FTLN 1464 Come hither. I am here.
DEMETRIUS 
FTLN 1465 Nay, then, thou mock’st me. Thou shalt buy this
FTLN 1466455 dear

115
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 3. SC. 2

FTLN 1467 If ever I thy face by daylight see.
FTLN 1468 Now go thy way. Faintness constraineth me
FTLN 1469 To measure out my length on this cold bed.
FTLN 1470 By day’s approach look to be visited.
editorial emendationHe lies down and sleeps.editorial emendation

Enter Helena.

HELENA 
FTLN 1471460 O weary night, O long and tedious night,
FTLN 1472  Abate thy hours! Shine, comforts, from the east,
FTLN 1473 That I may back to Athens by daylight
FTLN 1474  From these that my poor company detest.
FTLN 1475 And sleep, that sometimes shuts up sorrow’s eye,
FTLN 1476465 Steal me awhile from mine own company.
editorial emendationShe lies down andeditorial emendation sleeps.
ROBIN 
FTLN 1477  Yet but three? Come one more.
FTLN 1478  Two of both kinds makes up four.
FTLN 1479  Here she comes, curst and sad.
FTLN 1480  Cupid is a knavish lad
FTLN 1481470  Thus to make poor females mad.


editorial emendationEnter Hermia.editorial emendation

HERMIA 
FTLN 1482 Never so weary, never so in woe,
FTLN 1483  Bedabbled with the dew and torn with briers,
FTLN 1484 I can no further crawl, no further go.
FTLN 1485  My legs can keep no pace with my desires.
FTLN 1486475 Here will I rest me till the break of day.
FTLN 1487 Heavens shield Lysander if they mean a fray!
editorial emendationShe lies down and sleeps.editorial emendation
ROBIN 
FTLN 1488   On the ground
FTLN 1489   Sleep sound.
FTLN 1490   I’ll apply
FTLN 1491480   editorial emendationToeditorial emendation your eye,
FTLN 1492  Gentle lover, remedy.

117
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 3. SC. 2

editorial emendationRobin applies the nectar
 to Lysander’s eyes.editorial emendation

FTLN 1493   When thou wak’st,
FTLN 1494   Thou tak’st
FTLN 1495   True delight
FTLN 1496485   In the sight
FTLN 1497  Of thy former lady’s eye.
FTLN 1498  And the country proverb known,
FTLN 1499  That every man should take his own,
FTLN 1500  In your waking shall be shown.
FTLN 1501490   Jack shall have Jill;
FTLN 1502   Naught shall go ill;
FTLN 1503 The man shall have his mare again, and all shall be
FTLN 1504  well.

editorial emendationHe exits.editorial emendation




editorial emendationACT 4editorial emendation
editorial emendationScene 1editorial emendation
editorial emendationWith the four lovers still asleep onstage,editorial emendation enter
editorial emendationTitania,editorial emendation Queen of Fairies, and editorial emendationBottomeditorial emendation and Fairies,
and editorial emendationOberon,editorial emendation the King, behind them editorial emendationunseen by those
onstage.editorial emendation


TITANIA 
FTLN 1505 Come, sit thee down upon this flow’ry bed,
FTLN 1506  While I thy amiable cheeks do coy,
FTLN 1507 And stick muskroses in thy sleek smooth head,
FTLN 1508  And kiss thy fair large ears, my gentle joy.
BOTTOM  FTLN 15095Where’s Peaseblossom?
PEASEBLOSSOM  FTLN 1510Ready.
BOTTOM  FTLN 1511Scratch my head, Peaseblossom. Where’s
FTLN 1512 Monsieur Cobweb?
COBWEB  FTLN 1513Ready.
BOTTOM  FTLN 151410Monsieur Cobweb, good monsieur, get you
FTLN 1515 your weapons in your hand and kill me a red-hipped
FTLN 1516 humble-bee on the top of a thistle, and, good
FTLN 1517 monsieur, bring me the honey-bag. Do not fret
FTLN 1518 yourself too much in the action, monsieur, and,
FTLN 151915 good monsieur, have a care the honey-bag break
FTLN 1520 not; I would be loath to have you overflown with a
FTLN 1521 honey-bag, signior.  editorial emendationCobweb exits.editorial emendation Where’s Monsieur
FTLN 1522 Mustardseed?
MUSTARDSEED  FTLN 1523Ready.
121

123
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 4. SC. 1

BOTTOM  FTLN 152420Give me your neaf, Monsieur Mustardseed.
FTLN 1525 Pray you, leave your courtesy, good monsieur.
MUSTARDSEED  FTLN 1526What’s your will?
BOTTOM  FTLN 1527Nothing, good monsieur, but to help Cavalery
FTLN 1528 Cobweb to scratch. I must to the barber’s,
FTLN 152925 monsieur, for methinks I am marvels hairy about
FTLN 1530 the face. And I am such a tender ass, if my hair do
FTLN 1531 but tickle me, I must scratch.
TITANIA 
FTLN 1532 What, wilt thou hear some music, my sweet love?
BOTTOM  FTLN 1533I have a reasonable good ear in music. Let’s
FTLN 153430 have the tongs and the bones.
TITANIA 
FTLN 1535 Or say, sweet love, what thou desirest to eat.
BOTTOM  FTLN 1536Truly, a peck of provender. I could munch
FTLN 1537 your good dry oats. Methinks I have a great desire
FTLN 1538 to a bottle of hay. Good hay, sweet hay, hath no
FTLN 153935 fellow.
TITANIA 
FTLN 1540 I have a venturous fairy that shall seek
FTLN 1541 The squirrel’s hoard and fetch thee new nuts.
BOTTOM  FTLN 1542I had rather have a handful or two of dried
FTLN 1543 peas. But, I pray you, let none of your people stir
FTLN 154440 me; I have an exposition of sleep come upon me.
TITANIA 
FTLN 1545 Sleep thou, and I will wind thee in my arms.—
FTLN 1546 Fairies, begone, and be all ways away.
editorial emendationFairies exit.editorial emendation
FTLN 1547 So doth the woodbine the sweet honeysuckle
FTLN 1548 Gently entwist; the female ivy so
FTLN 154945 Enrings the barky fingers of the elm.
FTLN 1550 O, how I love thee! How I dote on thee!
editorial emendationBottom and Titania sleep.editorial emendation

Enter Robin Goodfellow.

OBERON 
FTLN 1551 Welcome, good Robin. Seest thou this sweet sight?

125
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 4. SC. 1

FTLN 1552 Her dotage now I do begin to pity.
FTLN 1553 For, meeting her of late behind the wood,
FTLN 155450 Seeking sweet favors for this hateful fool,
FTLN 1555 I did upbraid her and fall out with her.
FTLN 1556 For she his hairy temples then had rounded
FTLN 1557 With coronet of fresh and fragrant flowers;
FTLN 1558 And that same dew, which sometime on the buds
FTLN 155955 Was wont to swell like round and orient pearls,
FTLN 1560 Stood now within the pretty flouriets’ eyes,
FTLN 1561 Like tears that did their own disgrace bewail.
FTLN 1562 When I had at my pleasure taunted her,
FTLN 1563 And she in mild terms begged my patience,
FTLN 156460 I then did ask of her her changeling child,
FTLN 1565 Which straight she gave me, and her fairy sent
FTLN 1566 To bear him to my bower in Fairyland.
FTLN 1567 And now I have the boy, I will undo
FTLN 1568 This hateful imperfection of her eyes.
FTLN 156965 And, gentle Puck, take this transformèd scalp
FTLN 1570 From off the head of this Athenian swain,
FTLN 1571 That he, awaking when the other do,
FTLN 1572 May all to Athens back again repair
FTLN 1573 And think no more of this night’s accidents
FTLN 157470 But as the fierce vexation of a dream.
FTLN 1575 But first I will release the Fairy Queen.
editorial emendationHe applies the nectar to her eyes.editorial emendation
FTLN 1576  Be as thou wast wont to be.
FTLN 1577  See as thou wast wont to see.
FTLN 1578  Dian’s bud o’er Cupid’s flower
FTLN 157975  Hath such force and blessèd power.

FTLN 1580 Now, my Titania, wake you, my sweet queen.
TITANIA , editorial emendationwakingeditorial emendation 
FTLN 1581 My Oberon, what visions have I seen!
FTLN 1582 Methought I was enamored of an ass.
OBERON 
FTLN 1583 There lies your love.
TITANIA  FTLN 158480 How came these things to pass?
FTLN 1585 O, how mine eyes do loathe his visage now!

127
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 4. SC. 1

OBERON 
FTLN 1586 Silence awhile.—Robin, take off this head.—
FTLN 1587 Titania, music call; and strike more dead
FTLN 1588 Than common sleep of all these editorial emendationfiveeditorial emendation the sense.
TITANIA 
FTLN 158985 Music, ho, music such as charmeth sleep!
ROBIN , editorial emendationremoving the ass-head from Bottomeditorial emendation 
FTLN 1590 Now, when thou wak’st, with thine own fool’s eyes
FTLN 1591 peep.
OBERON 
FTLN 1592 Sound music. editorial emendationMusic.editorial emendation
FTLN 1593 Come, my queen, take hands with me,
FTLN 159490 And rock the ground whereon these sleepers be.
editorial emendationTitania and Oberon dance.editorial emendation
FTLN 1595 Now thou and I are new in amity,
FTLN 1596 And will tomorrow midnight solemnly
FTLN 1597 Dance in Duke Theseus’ house triumphantly,
FTLN 1598 And bless it to all fair prosperity.
FTLN 159995 There shall the pairs of faithful lovers be
FTLN 1600 Wedded, with Theseus, all in jollity.
ROBIN 
FTLN 1601  Fairy king, attend and mark.
FTLN 1602  I do hear the morning lark.

OBERON 
FTLN 1603  Then, my queen, in silence sad
FTLN 1604100  Trip we after night’s shade.
FTLN 1605  We the globe can compass soon,
FTLN 1606  Swifter than the wand’ring moon.

TITANIA 
FTLN 1607  Come, my lord, and in our flight
FTLN 1608  Tell me how it came this night
FTLN 1609105  That I sleeping here was found
FTLN 1610  With these mortals on the ground.

editorial emendationOberon, Robin, and Titaniaeditorial emendation exit.

Wind horn. Enter Theseus and all his train,
editorial emendationHippolyta, Egeus.editorial emendation



129
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 4. SC. 1

THESEUS 
FTLN 1611 Go, one of you, find out the Forester.
FTLN 1612 For now our observation is performed,
FTLN 1613 And, since we have the vaward of the day,
FTLN 1614110 My love shall hear the music of my hounds.
FTLN 1615 Uncouple in the western valley; let them go.
FTLN 1616 Dispatch, I say, and find the Forester.
editorial emendationA Servant exits.editorial emendation
FTLN 1617 We will, fair queen, up to the mountain’s top
FTLN 1618 And mark the musical confusion
FTLN 1619115 Of hounds and echo in conjunction.
HIPPOLYTA 
FTLN 1620 I was with Hercules and Cadmus once,
FTLN 1621 When in a wood of Crete they bayed the bear
FTLN 1622 With hounds of Sparta. Never did I hear
FTLN 1623 Such gallant chiding, for, besides the groves,
FTLN 1624120 The skies, the fountains, every region near
FTLN 1625 editorial emendationSeemededitorial emendation all one mutual cry. I never heard
FTLN 1626 So musical a discord, such sweet thunder.
THESEUS 
FTLN 1627 My hounds are bred out of the Spartan kind,
FTLN 1628 So flewed, so sanded; and their heads are hung
FTLN 1629125 With ears that sweep away the morning dew;
FTLN 1630 Crook-kneed, and dewlapped like Thessalian bulls;
FTLN 1631 Slow in pursuit, but matched in mouth like bells,
FTLN 1632 Each under each. A cry more tunable
FTLN 1633 Was never holloed to, nor cheered with horn,
FTLN 1634130 In Crete, in Sparta, nor in Thessaly.
FTLN 1635 Judge when you hear.—But soft! What nymphs are
FTLN 1636 these?
EGEUS 
FTLN 1637 My lord, this editorial emendationiseditorial emendation my daughter here asleep,
FTLN 1638 And this Lysander; this Demetrius is,
FTLN 1639135 This Helena, old Nedar’s Helena.
FTLN 1640 I wonder of their being here together.

131
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 4. SC. 1

THESEUS 
FTLN 1641 No doubt they rose up early to observe
FTLN 1642 The rite of May, and hearing our intent,
FTLN 1643 Came here in grace of our solemnity.
FTLN 1644140 But speak, Egeus. Is not this the day
FTLN 1645 That Hermia should give answer of her choice?
EGEUS  FTLN 1646It is, my lord.
THESEUS 
FTLN 1647 Go, bid the huntsmen wake them with their horns.
editorial emendationA Servant exits.editorial emendation
Shout within. Wind horns. They all start up.
THESEUS 
FTLN 1648 Good morrow, friends. Saint Valentine is past.
FTLN 1649145 Begin these woodbirds but to couple now?
editorial emendationDemetrius, Helena, Hermia, and Lysander kneel.editorial emendation
LYSANDER 
FTLN 1650 Pardon, my lord.
THESEUS  FTLN 1651 I pray you all, stand up.
editorial emendationThey rise.editorial emendation
FTLN 1652 I know you two are rival enemies.
FTLN 1653 How comes this gentle concord in the world,
FTLN 1654150 That hatred is so far from jealousy
FTLN 1655 To sleep by hate and fear no enmity?
LYSANDER 
FTLN 1656 My lord, I shall reply amazèdly,
FTLN 1657 Half sleep, half waking. But as yet, I swear,
FTLN 1658 I cannot truly say how I came here.
FTLN 1659155 But, as I think—for truly would I speak,
FTLN 1660 And now I do bethink me, so it is:
FTLN 1661 I came with Hermia hither. Our intent
FTLN 1662 Was to be gone from Athens, where we might,
FTLN 1663 Without the peril of the Athenian law—
EGEUS 
FTLN 1664160 Enough, enough!—My lord, you have enough.
FTLN 1665 I beg the law, the law upon his head.
FTLN 1666 They would have stol’n away.—They would,
FTLN 1667 Demetrius,

133
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 4. SC. 1

FTLN 1668 Thereby to have defeated you and me:
FTLN 1669165 You of your wife and me of my consent,
FTLN 1670 Of my consent that she should be your wife.
DEMETRIUS 
FTLN 1671 My lord, fair Helen told me of their stealth,
FTLN 1672 Of this their purpose hither to this wood,
FTLN 1673 And I in fury hither followed them,
FTLN 1674170 Fair Helena in fancy following me.
FTLN 1675 But, my good lord, I wot not by what power
FTLN 1676 (But by some power it is) my love to Hermia,
FTLN 1677 Melted as the snow, seems to me now
FTLN 1678 As the remembrance of an idle gaud
FTLN 1679175 Which in my childhood I did dote upon,
FTLN 1680 And all the faith, the virtue of my heart,
FTLN 1681 The object and the pleasure of mine eye,
FTLN 1682 Is only Helena. To her, my lord,
FTLN 1683 Was I betrothed ere I editorial emendationsaweditorial emendation Hermia.
FTLN 1684180 But like a sickness did I loathe this food.
FTLN 1685 But, as in health, come to my natural taste,
FTLN 1686 Now I do wish it, love it, long for it,
FTLN 1687 And will forevermore be true to it.
THESEUS 
FTLN 1688 Fair lovers, you are fortunately met.
FTLN 1689185 Of this discourse we more will hear anon.—
FTLN 1690 Egeus, I will overbear your will,
FTLN 1691 For in the temple by and by, with us,
FTLN 1692 These couples shall eternally be knit.—
FTLN 1693 And, for the morning now is something worn,
FTLN 1694190 Our purposed hunting shall be set aside.
FTLN 1695 Away with us to Athens. Three and three,
FTLN 1696 We’ll hold a feast in great solemnity.
FTLN 1697 Come, Hippolyta.
editorial emendationTheseus and his train,
including Hippolyta and Egeus, exit.editorial emendation

DEMETRIUS 
FTLN 1698 These things seem small and undistinguishable,
FTLN 1699195 Like far-off mountains turnèd into clouds.

135
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 4. SC. 1

HERMIA 
FTLN 1700 Methinks I see these things with parted eye,
FTLN 1701 When everything seems double.
HELENA  FTLN 1702 So methinks.
FTLN 1703 And I have found Demetrius like a jewel,
FTLN 1704200 Mine own and not mine own.
DEMETRIUS  FTLN 1705 Are you sure
FTLN 1706 That we are awake? It seems to me
FTLN 1707 That yet we sleep, we dream. Do not you think
FTLN 1708 The Duke was here and bid us follow him?
HERMIA 
FTLN 1709205 Yea, and my father.
HELENA  FTLN 1710 And Hippolyta.
LYSANDER 
FTLN 1711 And he did bid us follow to the temple.
DEMETRIUS 
FTLN 1712 Why, then, we are awake. Let’s follow him,
FTLN 1713 And by the way let editorial emendationuseditorial emendation recount our dreams.
editorial emendationLovers exit.editorial emendation
BOTTOM , editorial emendationwaking upeditorial emendation  FTLN 1714210 When my cue comes, call me,
FTLN 1715 and I will answer. My next is “Most fair Pyramus.”
FTLN 1716 Hey-ho! Peter Quince! Flute the bellows-mender!
FTLN 1717 Snout the tinker! Starveling! God’s my life! Stolen
FTLN 1718 hence and left me asleep! I have had a most rare
FTLN 1719215 vision. I have had a dream past the wit of man to say
FTLN 1720 what dream it was. Man is but an ass if he go about
FTLN 1721 editorial emendationtoeditorial emendation expound this dream. Methought I was—there
FTLN 1722 is no man can tell what. Methought I was and
FTLN 1723 methought I had—but man is but editorial emendationa patchededitorial emendation fool if
FTLN 1724220 he will offer to say what methought I had. The eye of
FTLN 1725 man hath not heard, the ear of man hath not seen,
FTLN 1726 man’s hand is not able to taste, his tongue to
FTLN 1727 conceive, nor his heart to report what my dream
FTLN 1728 was. I will get Peter Quince to write a ballad of this
FTLN 1729225 dream. It shall be called Bottom’s Dream because
FTLN 1730 it hath no bottom; and I will sing it in the

137
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 4. SC. 2

FTLN 1731 latter end of a play, before the Duke. Peradventure,
FTLN 1732 to make it the more gracious, I shall sing it at her
FTLN 1733 death.
editorial emendationHe exits.editorial emendation


editorial emendationScene 2editorial emendation
Enter Quince, Flute, editorial emendationSnout, and Starveling.editorial emendation

QUINCE  FTLN 1734Have you sent to Bottom’s house? Is he come
FTLN 1735 home yet?
editorial emendationSTARVELINGeditorial emendation  FTLN 1736He cannot be heard of. Out of doubt he
FTLN 1737 is transported.
FLUTE  FTLN 17385If he come not, then the play is marred. It goes
FTLN 1739 not forward, doth it?
QUINCE  FTLN 1740It is not possible. You have not a man in all
FTLN 1741 Athens able to discharge Pyramus but he.
FLUTE  FTLN 1742No, he hath simply the best wit of any handicraftman
FTLN 174310 in Athens.
QUINCE  FTLN 1744Yea, and the best person too, and he is a very
FTLN 1745 paramour for a sweet voice.
FLUTE  FTLN 1746You must say “paragon.” A “paramour” is (God
FTLN 1747 bless us) a thing of naught.

Enter Snug the joiner.

SNUG  FTLN 174815Masters, the Duke is coming from the temple,
FTLN 1749 and there is two or three lords and ladies more
FTLN 1750 married. If our sport had gone forward, we had all
FTLN 1751 been made men.
FLUTE  FTLN 1752O, sweet bully Bottom! Thus hath he lost six
FTLN 175320 pence a day during his life. He could not have
FTLN 1754 ’scaped six pence a day. An the Duke had not given
FTLN 1755 him six pence a day for playing Pyramus, I’ll be
FTLN 1756 hanged. He would have deserved it. Six pence a day
FTLN 1757 in Pyramus, or nothing!

Enter Bottom.


139
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 4. SC. 2

BOTTOM  FTLN 175825Where are these lads? Where are these
FTLN 1759 hearts?
QUINCE  FTLN 1760Bottom! O most courageous day! O most happy
FTLN 1761 hour!
BOTTOM  FTLN 1762Masters, I am to discourse wonders. But ask
FTLN 176330 me not what; for, if I tell you, I am not true
FTLN 1764 Athenian. I will tell you everything right as it fell
FTLN 1765 out.
QUINCE  FTLN 1766Let us hear, sweet Bottom.
BOTTOM  FTLN 1767Not a word of me. All that I will tell you is that
FTLN 176835 the Duke hath dined. Get your apparel together,
FTLN 1769 good strings to your beards, new ribbons to your
FTLN 1770 pumps. Meet presently at the palace. Every man
FTLN 1771 look o’er his part. For the short and the long is, our
FTLN 1772 play is preferred. In any case, let Thisbe have clean
FTLN 177340 linen, and let not him that plays the lion pare his
FTLN 1774 nails, for they shall hang out for the lion’s claws.
FTLN 1775 And, most dear actors, eat no onions nor garlic, for
FTLN 1776 we are to utter sweet breath, and I do not doubt but
FTLN 1777 to hear them say it is a sweet comedy. No more
FTLN 177845 words. Away! Go, away!
editorial emendationThey exit.editorial emendation




editorial emendationACT 5editorial emendation
editorial emendationScene 1editorial emendation
Enter Theseus, Hippolyta, and Philostrate, editorial emendationLords, and
Attendants.editorial emendation


HIPPOLYTA 
FTLN 1779 ’Tis strange, my Theseus, that these lovers speak of.
THESEUS 
FTLN 1780 More strange than true. I never may believe
FTLN 1781 These antique fables, nor these fairy toys.
FTLN 1782 Lovers and madmen have such seething brains,
FTLN 17835 Such shaping fantasies, that apprehend
FTLN 1784 More than cool reason ever comprehends.
FTLN 1785 The lunatic, the lover, and the poet
FTLN 1786 Are of imagination all compact.
FTLN 1787 One sees more devils than vast hell can hold:
FTLN 178810 That is the madman. The lover, all as frantic,
FTLN 1789 Sees Helen’s beauty in a brow of Egypt.
FTLN 1790 The poet’s eye, in a fine frenzy rolling,
FTLN 1791 Doth glance from heaven to Earth, from Earth to
FTLN 1792 heaven,
FTLN 179315 And as imagination bodies forth
FTLN 1794 The forms of things unknown, the poet’s pen
FTLN 1795 Turns them to shapes and gives to airy nothing
FTLN 1796 A local habitation and a name.
FTLN 1797 Such tricks hath strong imagination
FTLN 179820 That, if it would but apprehend some joy,
143

145
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 5. SC. 1

FTLN 1799 It comprehends some bringer of that joy.
FTLN 1800 Or in the night, imagining some fear,
FTLN 1801 How easy is a bush supposed a bear!
HIPPOLYTA 
FTLN 1802 But all the story of the night told over,
FTLN 180325 And all their minds transfigured so together,
FTLN 1804 More witnesseth than fancy’s images
FTLN 1805 And grows to something of great constancy,
FTLN 1806 But, howsoever, strange and admirable.

Enter Lovers: Lysander, Demetrius, Hermia, and Helena.

THESEUS 
FTLN 1807 Here come the lovers full of joy and mirth.—
FTLN 180830 Joy, gentle friends! Joy and fresh days of love
FTLN 1809 Accompany your hearts!
LYSANDER  FTLN 1810 More than to us
FTLN 1811 Wait in your royal walks, your board, your bed!
THESEUS 
FTLN 1812 Come now, what masques, what dances shall we
FTLN 181335 have
FTLN 1814 To wear away this long age of three hours
FTLN 1815 Between editorial emendationoureditorial emendation after-supper and bedtime?
FTLN 1816 Where is our usual manager of mirth?
FTLN 1817 What revels are in hand? Is there no play
FTLN 181840 To ease the anguish of a torturing hour?
FTLN 1819 Call Philostrate.
PHILOSTRATE , editorial emendationcoming forwardeditorial emendation  FTLN 1820 Here, mighty Theseus.
THESEUS 
FTLN 1821 Say what abridgment have you for this evening,
FTLN 1822 What masque, what music? How shall we beguile
FTLN 182345 The lazy time if not with some delight?
PHILOSTRATE , editorial emendationgiving Theseus a papereditorial emendation 
FTLN 1824 There is a brief how many sports are ripe.
FTLN 1825 Make choice of which your Highness will see first.

147
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 5. SC. 1

THESEUS 
FTLN 1826 The battle with the Centaurs, to be sung
FTLN 1827 By an Athenian eunuch to the harp.
FTLN 182850 We’ll none of that. That have I told my love
FTLN 1829 In glory of my kinsman Hercules.
FTLN 1830 The riot of the tipsy Bacchanals,
FTLN 1831 Tearing the Thracian singer in their rage.
FTLN 1832 That is an old device, and it was played
FTLN 183355 When I from Thebes came last a conqueror.
FTLN 1834 The thrice-three Muses mourning for the death
FTLN 1835 Of learning, late deceased in beggary.
FTLN 1836 That is some satire, keen and critical,
FTLN 1837 Not sorting with a nuptial ceremony.
FTLN 183860 A tedious brief scene of young Pyramus
FTLN 1839 And his love Thisbe, very tragical mirth.
FTLN 1840 “Merry” and “tragical”? “Tedious” and “brief”?
FTLN 1841 That is hot ice and wondrous strange snow!
FTLN 1842 How shall we find the concord of this discord?
PHILOSTRATE 
FTLN 184365 A play there is, my lord, some ten words long
FTLN 1844 (Which is as brief as I have known a play),
FTLN 1845 But by ten words, my lord, it is too long,
FTLN 1846 Which makes it tedious; for in all the play,
FTLN 1847 There is not one word apt, one player fitted.
FTLN 184870 And tragical, my noble lord, it is.
FTLN 1849 For Pyramus therein doth kill himself,
FTLN 1850 Which, when I saw rehearsed, I must confess,
FTLN 1851 Made mine eyes water; but more merry tears
FTLN 1852 The passion of loud laughter never shed.
THESEUS 
FTLN 185375 What are they that do play it?
PHILOSTRATE 
FTLN 1854 Hard-handed men that work in Athens here,
FTLN 1855 Which never labored in their minds till now,
FTLN 1856 And now have toiled their unbreathed memories
FTLN 1857 With this same play, against your nuptial.

149
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 5. SC. 1

THESEUS 
FTLN 185880 And we will hear it.
PHILOSTRATE  FTLN 1859 No, my noble lord,
FTLN 1860 It is not for you. I have heard it over,
FTLN 1861 And it is nothing, nothing in the world,
FTLN 1862 Unless you can find sport in their intents,
FTLN 186385 Extremely stretched and conned with cruel pain
FTLN 1864 To do you service.
THESEUS  FTLN 1865 I will hear that play,
FTLN 1866 For never anything can be amiss
FTLN 1867 When simpleness and duty tender it.
FTLN 186890 Go, bring them in—and take your places, ladies.
editorial emendationPhilostrate exits.editorial emendation
HIPPOLYTA 
FTLN 1869 I love not to see wretchedness o’ercharged,
FTLN 1870 And duty in his service perishing.
THESEUS 
FTLN 1871 Why, gentle sweet, you shall see no such thing.
HIPPOLYTA 
FTLN 1872 He says they can do nothing in this kind.
THESEUS 
FTLN 187395 The kinder we, to give them thanks for nothing.
FTLN 1874 Our sport shall be to take what they mistake;
FTLN 1875 And what poor duty cannot do, noble respect
FTLN 1876 Takes it in might, not merit.
FTLN 1877 Where I have come, great clerks have purposèd
FTLN 1878100 To greet me with premeditated welcomes,
FTLN 1879 Where I have seen them shiver and look pale,
FTLN 1880 Make periods in the midst of sentences,
FTLN 1881 Throttle their practiced accent in their fears,
FTLN 1882 And in conclusion dumbly have broke off,
FTLN 1883105 Not paying me a welcome. Trust me, sweet,
FTLN 1884 Out of this silence yet I picked a welcome,
FTLN 1885 And in the modesty of fearful duty,
FTLN 1886 I read as much as from the rattling tongue
FTLN 1887 Of saucy and audacious eloquence.

151
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 5. SC. 1

FTLN 1888110 Love, therefore, and tongue-tied simplicity
FTLN 1889 In least speak most, to my capacity.

editorial emendationEnter Philostrate.editorial emendation

PHILOSTRATE 
FTLN 1890 So please your Grace, the Prologue is addressed.
THESEUS  FTLN 1891Let him approach.

Enter the Prologue.

PROLOGUE 
FTLN 1892 If we offend, it is with our goodwill.
FTLN 1893115  That you should think we come not to offend,
FTLN 1894 But with goodwill. To show our simple skill,
FTLN 1895  That is the true beginning of our end.
FTLN 1896 Consider, then, we come but in despite.
FTLN 1897  We do not come, as minding to content you,
FTLN 1898120 Our true intent is. All for your delight
FTLN 1899  We are not here. That you should here repent
FTLN 1900  you,
FTLN 1901 The actors are at hand, and, by their show,
FTLN 1902 You shall know all that you are like to know.
editorial emendationPrologue exits.editorial emendation
THESEUS  FTLN 1903125This fellow doth not stand upon points.
LYSANDER  FTLN 1904He hath rid his prologue like a rough colt;
FTLN 1905 he knows not the stop. A good moral, my lord: it is
FTLN 1906 not enough to speak, but to speak true.
HIPPOLYTA  FTLN 1907Indeed he hath played on this prologue like
FTLN 1908130 a child on a recorder—a sound, but not in
FTLN 1909 government.
THESEUS  FTLN 1910His speech was like a tangled chain—nothing
FTLN 1911 impaired, but all disordered. Who is next?

Enter Pyramus editorial emendation(Bottom),editorial emendation and Thisbe editorial emendation(Flute),editorial emendation and
Wall editorial emendation(Snout),editorial emendation and Moonshine editorial emendation(Starveling),editorial emendation and Lion
editorial emendation(Snug),editorial emendation editorial emendationand Prologue (Quince).editorial emendation


QUINCE , as Prologue 
FTLN 1912 Gentles, perchance you wonder at this show.

153
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 5. SC. 1

FTLN 1913135  But wonder on, till truth make all things plain.
FTLN 1914 This man is Pyramus, if you would know.
FTLN 1915  This beauteous lady Thisbe is certain.
FTLN 1916 This man with lime and roughcast doth present
FTLN 1917  “Wall,” that vile wall which did these lovers
FTLN 1918140  sunder;
FTLN 1919 And through Wall’s chink, poor souls, they are
FTLN 1920 content
FTLN 1921  To whisper, at the which let no man wonder.
FTLN 1922 This man, with lantern, dog, and bush of thorn,
FTLN 1923145  Presenteth “Moonshine,” for, if you will know,
FTLN 1924 By moonshine did these lovers think no scorn
FTLN 1925  To meet at Ninus’ tomb, there, there to woo.
FTLN 1926 This grisly beast (which “Lion” hight by name)
FTLN 1927  The trusty Thisbe coming first by night
FTLN 1928150 Did editorial emendationscareeditorial emendation away, or rather did affright;
FTLN 1929 And, as she fled, her mantle she did fall,
FTLN 1930  Which Lion vile with bloody mouth did stain.
FTLN 1931 Anon comes Pyramus, sweet youth and tall,
FTLN 1932  And finds his trusty Thisbe’s mantle slain.
FTLN 1933155 Whereat, with blade, with bloody blameful blade,
FTLN 1934  He bravely broached his boiling bloody breast.
FTLN 1935 And Thisbe, tarrying in mulberry shade,
FTLN 1936  His dagger drew, and died. For all the rest,
FTLN 1937 Let Lion, Moonshine, Wall, and lovers twain
FTLN 1938160 At large discourse, while here they do remain.
THESEUS  FTLN 1939I wonder if the lion be to speak.
DEMETRIUS  FTLN 1940No wonder, my lord. One lion may when
FTLN 1941 many asses do.
Lion, Thisbe, Moonshine, editorial emendationand Prologueeditorial emendation exit.
SNOUT , as Wall 
FTLN 1942 In this same interlude it doth befall
FTLN 1943165 That I, one editorial emendationSnouteditorial emendation by name, present a wall;
FTLN 1944 And such a wall as I would have you think
FTLN 1945 That had in it a crannied hole or chink,
FTLN 1946 Through which the lovers, Pyramus and Thisbe,

155
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 5. SC. 1

FTLN 1947 Did whisper often, very secretly.
FTLN 1948170 This loam, this roughcast, and this stone doth show
FTLN 1949 That I am that same wall. The truth is so.
FTLN 1950 And this the cranny is, right and sinister,
FTLN 1951 Through which the fearful lovers are to whisper.
THESEUS  FTLN 1952Would you desire lime and hair to speak
FTLN 1953175 better?
DEMETRIUS  FTLN 1954It is the wittiest partition that ever I heard
FTLN 1955 discourse, my lord.
THESEUS  FTLN 1956Pyramus draws near the wall. Silence.
BOTTOM , as Pyramus 
FTLN 1957 O grim-looked night! O night with hue so black!
FTLN 1958180  O night, which ever art when day is not!
FTLN 1959 O night! O night! Alack, alack, alack!
FTLN 1960  I fear my Thisbe’s promise is forgot.
FTLN 1961 And thou, O wall, O sweet, O lovely wall,
FTLN 1962  That stand’st between her father’s ground and
FTLN 1963185  mine,
FTLN 1964 Thou wall, O wall, O sweet and lovely wall,
FTLN 1965  Show me thy chink to blink through with mine
FTLN 1966  eyne.
FTLN 1967 Thanks, courteous wall. Jove shield thee well for
FTLN 1968190 this.
FTLN 1969  But what see I? No Thisbe do I see.
FTLN 1970 O wicked wall, through whom I see no bliss,
FTLN 1971  Cursed be thy stones for thus deceiving me!
THESEUS  FTLN 1972The wall, methinks, being sensible, should
FTLN 1973195 curse again.
BOTTOM  FTLN 1974No, in truth, sir, he should not. “Deceiving
FTLN 1975 me” is Thisbe’s cue. She is to enter now, and I am
FTLN 1976 to spy her through the wall. You shall see it will fall
FTLN 1977 pat as I told you. Yonder she comes.

Enter Thisbe editorial emendation(Flute).editorial emendation

FLUTE , as Thisbe 
FTLN 1978200 O wall, full often hast thou heard my moans

157
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 5. SC. 1

FTLN 1979  For parting my fair Pyramus and me.
FTLN 1980 My cherry lips have often kissed thy stones,
FTLN 1981  Thy stones with lime and hair knit editorial emendationup in thee.editorial emendation
BOTTOM , as Pyramus 
FTLN 1982 I see a voice! Now will I to the chink
FTLN 1983205  To spy an I can hear my Thisbe’s face.
FTLN 1984 Thisbe?
FLUTE , as Thisbe 
FTLN 1985 My love! Thou art my love, I think.
BOTTOM , as Pyramus 
FTLN 1986  Think what thou wilt, I am thy lover’s grace,
FTLN 1987 And, like Limander, am I trusty still.
FLUTE , as Thisbe 
FTLN 1988210 And I like Helen, till the Fates me kill.
BOTTOM , as Pyramus 
FTLN 1989 Not Shafalus to Procrus was so true.
FLUTE , as Thisbe 
FTLN 1990 As Shafalus to Procrus, I to you.
BOTTOM , as Pyramus 
FTLN 1991 O kiss me through the hole of this vile wall.
FLUTE , as Thisbe 
FTLN 1992 I kiss the wall’s hole, not your lips at all.
BOTTOM , as Pyramus 
FTLN 1993215 Wilt thou at Ninny’s tomb meet me straightway?
FLUTE , as Thisbe 
FTLN 1994 ’Tide life, ’tide death, I come without delay.
editorial emendationBottom and Flute exit.editorial emendation
SNOUT , as Wall 
FTLN 1995 Thus have I, Wall, my part dischargèd so,
FTLN 1996 And, being done, thus Wall away doth go. editorial emendationHe exits.editorial emendation
THESEUS  FTLN 1997Now is the editorial emendationwall downeditorial emendation between the two
FTLN 1998220 neighbors.
DEMETRIUS  FTLN 1999No remedy, my lord, when walls are so
FTLN 2000 willful to hear without warning.
HIPPOLYTA  FTLN 2001This is the silliest stuff that ever I heard.
THESEUS  FTLN 2002The best in this kind are but shadows, and

159
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 5. SC. 1

FTLN 2003225 the worst are no worse, if imagination amend
FTLN 2004 them.
HIPPOLYTA  FTLN 2005It must be your imagination, then, and not
FTLN 2006 theirs.
THESEUS  FTLN 2007If we imagine no worse of them than they of
FTLN 2008230 themselves, they may pass for excellent men. Here
FTLN 2009 come two noble beasts in, a man and a lion.

Enter Lion editorial emendation(Snug)editorial emendation and Moonshine editorial emendation(Starveling).editorial emendation

SNUG , as Lion 
FTLN 2010 You ladies, you whose gentle hearts do fear
FTLN 2011  The smallest monstrous mouse that creeps on
FTLN 2012  floor,
FTLN 2013235 May now perchance both quake and tremble here,
FTLN 2014  When lion rough in wildest rage doth roar.
FTLN 2015 Then know that I, as Snug the joiner, am
FTLN 2016 A lion fell, nor else no lion’s dam;
FTLN 2017 For if I should as lion come in strife
FTLN 2018240 Into this place, ’twere pity on my life.
THESEUS  FTLN 2019A very gentle beast, and of a good
FTLN 2020 conscience.
DEMETRIUS  FTLN 2021The very best at a beast, my lord, that e’er I
FTLN 2022 saw.
LYSANDER  FTLN 2023245This lion is a very fox for his valor.
THESEUS  FTLN 2024True, and a goose for his discretion.
DEMETRIUS  FTLN 2025Not so, my lord, for his valor cannot carry
FTLN 2026 his discretion, and the fox carries the goose.
THESEUS  FTLN 2027His discretion, I am sure, cannot carry his
FTLN 2028250 valor, for the goose carries not the fox. It is well.
FTLN 2029 Leave it to his discretion, and let us listen to the
FTLN 2030 Moon.
STARVELING , as Moonshine 
FTLN 2031 This lanthorn doth the hornèd moon present.
DEMETRIUS  FTLN 2032He should have worn the horns on his
FTLN 2033255 head.
THESEUS  FTLN 2034He is no crescent, and his horns are invisible
FTLN 2035 within the circumference.

161
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 5. SC. 1

STARVELING , as Moonshine 
FTLN 2036 This lanthorn doth the hornèd moon present.
FTLN 2037 Myself the man i’ th’ moon do seem to be.
THESEUS  FTLN 2038260This is the greatest error of all the rest; the
FTLN 2039 man should be put into the lanthorn. How is it else
FTLN 2040 “the man i’ th’ moon”?
DEMETRIUS  FTLN 2041He dares not come there for the candle,
FTLN 2042 for you see, it is already in snuff.
HIPPOLYTA  FTLN 2043265I am aweary of this moon. Would he would
FTLN 2044 change.
THESEUS  FTLN 2045It appears by his small light of discretion that
FTLN 2046 he is in the wane; but yet, in courtesy, in all reason,
FTLN 2047 we must stay the time.
LYSANDER  FTLN 2048270Proceed, Moon.
STARVELING , as Moonshine  FTLN 2049 All that I have to say is to tell
FTLN 2050 you that the lanthorn is the moon, I the man i’ th’
FTLN 2051 moon, this thornbush my thornbush, and this dog
FTLN 2052 my dog.
DEMETRIUS  FTLN 2053275Why, all these should be in the lanthorn,
FTLN 2054 for all these are in the moon. But silence. Here
FTLN 2055 comes Thisbe.

Enter Thisbe editorial emendation(Flute).editorial emendation

FLUTE , as Thisbe 
FTLN 2056 This is old Ninny’s tomb. Where is my love?
SNUG , as Lion  FTLN 2057O!
editorial emendationThe Lion roars. Thisbe runs off,
dropping her mantle.editorial emendation

DEMETRIUS  FTLN 2058280Well roared, Lion.
THESEUS  FTLN 2059Well run, Thisbe.
HIPPOLYTA  FTLN 2060Well shone, Moon. Truly, the Moon shines
FTLN 2061 with a good grace.
editorial emendationLion worries the mantle.editorial emendation
THESEUS  FTLN 2062Well moused, Lion.

Enter Pyramus editorial emendation(Bottom).editorial emendation


163
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 5. SC. 1

DEMETRIUS  FTLN 2063285And then came Pyramus.
editorial emendationLion exits.editorial emendation
LYSANDER  FTLN 2064And so the lion vanished.
BOTTOM , as Pyramus 
FTLN 2065 Sweet Moon, I thank thee for thy sunny beams.
FTLN 2066  I thank thee, Moon, for shining now so bright,
FTLN 2067 For by thy gracious, golden, glittering editorial emendationgleams,editorial emendation
FTLN 2068290  I trust to take of truest Thisbe sight.—
FTLN 2069  But stay! O spite!
FTLN 2070  But mark, poor knight,
FTLN 2071  What dreadful dole is here!
FTLN 2072  Eyes, do you see!
FTLN 2073295  How can it be!
FTLN 2074  O dainty duck! O dear!
FTLN 2075  Thy mantle good—
FTLN 2076  What, stained with blood?
FTLN 2077  Approach, ye Furies fell!
FTLN 2078300  O Fates, come, come,
FTLN 2079  Cut thread and thrum,
FTLN 2080  Quail, crush, conclude, and quell!
THESEUS  FTLN 2081This passion, and the death of a dear friend,
FTLN 2082 would go near to make a man look sad.
HIPPOLYTA  FTLN 2083305Beshrew my heart but I pity the man.
BOTTOM , as Pyramus 
FTLN 2084 O, wherefore, Nature, didst thou lions frame,
FTLN 2085  Since lion vile hath here deflowered my dear,
FTLN 2086 Which is—no, no—which was the fairest dame
FTLN 2087  That lived, that loved, that liked, that looked with
FTLN 2088310  cheer?
FTLN 2089  Come, tears, confound!
FTLN 2090  Out, sword, and wound
FTLN 2091  The pap of Pyramus;
FTLN 2092  Ay, that left pap,
FTLN 2093315  Where heart doth hop. editorial emendationPyramus stabs himself.editorial emendation
FTLN 2094  Thus die I, thus, thus, thus.
FTLN 2095  Now am I dead;

165
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 5. SC. 1

FTLN 2096  Now am I fled;
FTLN 2097  My soul is in the sky.
FTLN 2098320  Tongue, lose thy light!
FTLN 2099  Moon, take thy flight! editorial emendationMoonshine exits.editorial emendation
FTLN 2100  Now die, die, die, die, die. editorial emendationPyramus falls.editorial emendation
DEMETRIUS  FTLN 2101No die, but an ace for him, for he is but
FTLN 2102 one.
LYSANDER  FTLN 2103325Less than an ace, man, for he is dead, he is
FTLN 2104 nothing.
THESEUS  FTLN 2105With the help of a surgeon he might yet
FTLN 2106 recover and yet prove an ass.
HIPPOLYTA  FTLN 2107How chance Moonshine is gone before
FTLN 2108330 Thisbe comes back and finds her lover?
THESEUS  FTLN 2109She will find him by starlight.

editorial emendationEnter Thisbe (Flute).editorial emendation

FTLN 2110 Here she comes, and her passion ends the play.
HIPPOLYTA  FTLN 2111Methinks she should not use a long one for
FTLN 2112 such a Pyramus. I hope she will be brief.
DEMETRIUS  FTLN 2113335A mote will turn the balance, which Pyramus,
FTLN 2114 which Thisbe, is the better: he for a man, God
FTLN 2115 warrant us; she for a woman, God bless us.
LYSANDER  FTLN 2116She hath spied him already with those
FTLN 2117 sweet eyes.
DEMETRIUS  FTLN 2118340And thus she means, videlicet
FLUTE , as Thisbe 
FTLN 2119  Asleep, my love?
FTLN 2120  What, dead, my dove?
FTLN 2121  O Pyramus, arise!
FTLN 2122  Speak, speak. Quite dumb?
FTLN 2123345  Dead? Dead? A tomb
FTLN 2124  Must cover thy sweet eyes.
FTLN 2125  These lily lips,
FTLN 2126  This cherry nose,
FTLN 2127  These yellow cowslip cheeks
FTLN 2128350  Are gone, are gone!

167
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 5. SC. 1

FTLN 2129  Lovers, make moan;
FTLN 2130  His eyes were green as leeks.
FTLN 2131  O Sisters Three,
FTLN 2132  Come, come to me
FTLN 2133355  With hands as pale as milk.
FTLN 2134  Lay them in gore,
FTLN 2135  Since you have shore
FTLN 2136  With shears his thread of silk.
FTLN 2137  Tongue, not a word!
FTLN 2138360  Come, trusty sword,
FTLN 2139  Come, blade, my breast imbrue!
editorial emendationThisbe stabs herself.editorial emendation
FTLN 2140  And farewell, friends.
FTLN 2141  Thus Thisbe ends.
FTLN 2142  Adieu, adieu, adieu.
editorial emendationThisbe falls.editorial emendation
THESEUS  FTLN 2143365Moonshine and Lion are left to bury the
FTLN 2144 dead.
DEMETRIUS  FTLN 2145Ay, and Wall too.
editorial emendationBottom and Flute arise.editorial emendation
editorial emendationBOTTOMeditorial emendation  FTLN 2146No, I assure you, the wall is down that
FTLN 2147 parted their fathers. Will it please you to see the
FTLN 2148370 Epilogue or to hear a Bergomask dance between
FTLN 2149 two of our company?
THESEUS  FTLN 2150No epilogue, I pray you. For your play needs
FTLN 2151 no excuse. Never excuse. For when the players are
FTLN 2152 all dead, there need none to be blamed. Marry, if
FTLN 2153375 he that writ it had played Pyramus and hanged
FTLN 2154 himself in Thisbe’s garter, it would have been a fine
FTLN 2155 tragedy; and so it is, truly, and very notably discharged.
FTLN 2156 But, come, your Bergomask. Let your
FTLN 2157 epilogue alone.
editorial emendationDance, and the players exit.editorial emendation
FTLN 2158380 The iron tongue of midnight hath told twelve.
FTLN 2159 Lovers, to bed! ’Tis almost fairy time.
FTLN 2160 I fear we shall outsleep the coming morn
FTLN 2161 As much as we this night have overwatched.

169
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 5. SC. 1

FTLN 2162 This palpable-gross play hath well beguiled
FTLN 2163385 The heavy gait of night. Sweet friends, to bed.
FTLN 2164 A fortnight hold we this solemnity
FTLN 2165 In nightly revels and new jollity. They exit.

Enter editorial emendationRobin Goodfellow.editorial emendation

ROBIN 
FTLN 2166 Now the hungry editorial emendationlioneditorial emendation roars,
FTLN 2167  And the wolf editorial emendationbehowlseditorial emendation the moon,
FTLN 2168390 Whilst the heavy plowman snores,
FTLN 2169  All with weary task fordone.
FTLN 2170 Now the wasted brands do glow,
FTLN 2171  Whilst the screech-owl, screeching loud,
FTLN 2172 Puts the wretch that lies in woe
FTLN 2173395  In remembrance of a shroud.
FTLN 2174 Now it is the time of night
FTLN 2175  That the graves, all gaping wide,
FTLN 2176 Every one lets forth his sprite
FTLN 2177  In the church-way paths to glide.
FTLN 2178400 And we fairies, that do run
FTLN 2179  By the triple Hecate’s team
FTLN 2180 From the presence of the sun,
FTLN 2181  Following darkness like a dream,
FTLN 2182 Now are frolic. Not a mouse
FTLN 2183405 Shall disturb this hallowed house.
FTLN 2184 I am sent with broom before,
FTLN 2185 To sweep the dust behind the door.


Enter editorial emendationOberon and Titania,editorial emendation King and Queen of Fairies,
with all their train.


OBERON 
FTLN 2186 Through the house give glimmering light,
FTLN 2187  By the dead and drowsy fire.
FTLN 2188410 Every elf and fairy sprite,
FTLN 2189  Hop as light as bird from brier,
FTLN 2190 And this ditty after me,
FTLN 2191 Sing and dance it trippingly.


171
A Midsummer Night’s Dream
ACT 5. SC. 1

TITANIA 
FTLN 2192 First rehearse your song by rote,
FTLN 2193415 To each word a warbling note.
FTLN 2194 Hand in hand, with fairy grace,
FTLN 2195 Will we sing and bless this place.

editorial emendationOberon leads the Fairies in song and dance.editorial emendation
OBERON 
FTLN 2196 Now, until the break of day,
FTLN 2197 Through this house each fairy stray.
FTLN 2198420 To the best bride-bed will we,
FTLN 2199 Which by us shall blessèd be,
FTLN 2200 And the issue there create
FTLN 2201 Ever shall be fortunate.
FTLN 2202 So shall all the couples three
FTLN 2203425 Ever true in loving be,
FTLN 2204 And the blots of Nature’s hand
FTLN 2205 Shall not in their issue stand.
FTLN 2206 Never mole, harelip, nor scar,
FTLN 2207 Nor mark prodigious, such as are
FTLN 2208430 Despisèd in nativity,
FTLN 2209 Shall upon their children be.
FTLN 2210 With this field-dew consecrate
FTLN 2211 Every fairy take his gait,
FTLN 2212 And each several chamber bless,
FTLN 2213435 Through this palace, with sweet peace.
FTLN 2214 And the owner of it blest,
FTLN 2215 Ever shall in safety rest.
FTLN 2216 Trip away. Make no stay.
FTLN 2217 Meet me all by break of day.

editorial emendationAll but Robineditorial emendation exit.
ROBIN 
FTLN 2218440 If we shadows have offended,
FTLN 2219 Think but this and all is mended:
FTLN 2220 That you have but slumbered here
FTLN 2221 While these visions did appear.
FTLN 2222 And this weak and idle theme,

173
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ACT 5. SC. 1

FTLN 2223445 No more yielding but a dream,
FTLN 2224 Gentles, do not reprehend.
FTLN 2225 If you pardon, we will mend.
FTLN 2226 And, as I am an honest Puck,
FTLN 2227 If we have unearnèd luck
FTLN 2228450 Now to ’scape the serpent’s tongue,
FTLN 2229 We will make amends ere long.
FTLN 2230 Else the Puck a liar call.
FTLN 2231 So good night unto you all.
FTLN 2232 Give me your hands, if we be friends,
FTLN 2233455 And Robin shall restore amends.

editorial emendationHe exits.editorial emendation