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Enter Hermia, Her. ARK night, that from the eye his function

takes, The ear more quick of apprehension makes : Wherein it doth impair the seeing sense, It pays the earing double recompence. Thou art not by mine eye, Lysander, found; Mine ear, I thank, it brought me to thy found. But why unkindly didst thou leave me fo? Lys. Why should he stay, whom love doth press

to go ? Her. What love could press Lysander from my

fide? Lyf. Lysander's love, that would not let him ''bide, Fair Helena; who more engilds the night, Than all yon fiery O's and eyes of light. Why seek'st thou me? could not this make thee know, The hate, I bear thee, made me leave thee so?

Her. You speak not, as you think; it cannot be.

Hel. Lo, she is one of this confed'racy; Now, I perceive, they have conjoin'd all three, To fashion this false sport in spight of me. Injurious Hermia, most ungrateful maid, Have you conspir’d, have you with these contriv'd To bait me with this foul derision ? Is all the counsel that we two have shar'd, The sisters vows, the hours that we have spent, When we have chid the hafty-footed time For parting us; O! and is all forgot? All school-days friendship, childhood innocence ? We, Hermia, like two artificial gods, Created with our needles both one flower, Both on one sampler, sitting on one cushion; Both warbling of one song, both in one key; As if our hands, our sides, voices, and minds

for it;

Had been incorp’rate. So we grew together,
Like to a double cherry, seeming parted,
But yet an union in partition ;
Two lovely berries molded on one stem,
So with two seeming bodies, but one heart;
Two of the first, like coats in heraldry,
Due but to one, and crowned with one crest.
And will

rend our

ancient love afunder,
To join with men in scorning your poor friend?
It is not friendly, 'tis not maidenly;
Our sex, as well as I, may


you Though I alone do feel the injury.

Her. I am amazed at your passionate words: I scorn you not; it seems, that


scorn me. Hel. Have you not set Lysander, as in scorn, To follow me, and praise my eyes and face? And made your other love, Demetrius, (Who, even but now, did spurn me with his foot) To call me goddess, nymph, divine, and rare, Precious, celestial? wherefore speaks he this To her he hates ? and wherefore doth Lysander Deny your love, so rich within his soul, And tender me, forsooth, affection; But by your setting on, by your consent? What though I be not so in grace as you, So hung upon with love, so fortunate ; But miferable most, to love unlov'd ? This you should pity, rather than despise.

Her. I understand not what you mean by this.

Hel. Ay, do, persevere, counterfeit fad looks,
Make mouths upon me, when I turn my back;
Wink each at other, hold the sweet jest up:
This sport, well carried, shall be chronicled.

have any pity, grace, or manners,
You would not make me such an argument:
But fare ye well, 'tis partly mine own fault,
Which death or absence soon shall remedy.

Lys. Stay, gentle Helena; hear my excuse ;


My love, my life, my soul, fair Helena!

Hel. O excellent!
Her. Sweet, do not fcorn her so.
Dem. If she cannot entreat, I can compel.

Lys. Thou canst compel, no more than she entreat: Thy threats have no more strength, than her weak

Helen, I love thee; by my life, I do ;
I swear, by that which I will lose for thee,
To prove him false, that says, I love thee not.

Dem. I say, I love thee more than he can do.
Lys. If thou lay so, withdraw and prove it too.
Dem. Quick, come
Her. Lysander, whereto tends all this?
Lyf. Away, you Ethiope !

Dem. No, no, he'll seem
To break away; take on as he would follow,
But yet come not; you are a tame man, go,
Lyf. Hang off, thou cat, thou burr; vile thing, let

loole; Or I will shake thee from me, like a serpent. Her. Why are you grown fo rude? what change

is this? Sweet love!

Lys. Thy love? out, tawny Tartar, out;
Out, loathed medicine: hated poison, hence.

Her. Do you not jest?
Hel. Yes, sooth, and so do

Lyf. Demetrius, I will keep my word with thee.

Dem. I would, I had your bond; for, I perceive, A weak bond holds


I'll not trust Lyf. What, should I hurt her, strike her, kill her

dead? Although I hate her, I'll not harm her fo.

Her. What, can you do me greater harm, than hate? Hate me! wherefore? O me! what news, my love? Am not I Hermia? are not you Lysander ? I am as fair now, as I was ere-while.

your word.

left me;

Since night, you lov'd me; yet, since night, you
Why then you left me -O the gods forbid it!)
In earnest, shall I say?

Lyf. Ay, by my life;
And never did desire to see thee more.
Therefore be out of hope, of question, doubt;
Be certain, nothing truer; 'tis no jest ;
That I do hate thee, and love Helena.

Her. O me, you jugler; oh, you canker-blossom, You thief of love; what, have you come by night, And stoll'n my love's heart from him ?

Hel. Fine, i faith!
Have you no modesty, no maiden shame,
No touch of bashfulness? what, will you tear
Impatient answers from my gentle tongue ?
Fie, fie, you counterfeit; you puppet, you,

Her. Puppet! why, fo :'ay, that way goes the game.
Now, I perceive, that she hath made compare
Between our statures; she hath urg'd her height;
And with her personage, her tall personage,
Her height, forsooth, she hath prevail'd with him.
And are you grown so high in his esteem,
Because I am so dwarfish and low?
How low am I, thou painted maypole? speak,
How low am I? I am not yet so low,
But that

nails can reach unto thine

Hel. I pray you, though you mock me, gentlemen,
Let her not hurt me: I was never curst;
I have no gift at all in shrewishness;
I am a right maid, for my cowardice:
Let her not strike me. You, perhaps, may think,
Because she's something lower than myself,
That I can match her.

Her. Lower! hark, again.

Hel. Good Hermia, do not be so bitter with me; I evermore did love you, Hermia, Did ever keep your counsels, never wrong'd you;

Save that, in love unto Demetrius,
I told him of


stealth unto this wood: He follow'd you, for love I follow'd him, But he hath chid me hence, and threaten'd me To strike me, spurn me, nay, to kill me too; And now, so you will let me quiet go, To Athens will I bear my folly back, And follow you no further. Let me go. You see, how simple and how fond I am. Her. Why, get you gone: who is't that hinders

you? Hel. A foolish heart, that I leave here behind. Her. What, with Lysander? Hel. With Demetrius. Lys. Be not afraid, she shall not harm thee, Helena. Dem. No, Sir, she shall not, though you take her part.

Hel. O, when she's angry, she is keen and shrewd; She was a vixen, when she went to school ; And though she be but little, she is fierce.

Her. Little, again? nothing but low, and little?
Why will you suffer her to flout me thus;
Let me come to her.

Lys. Get you gone, you dwarf,
You Minimus, of hind'ring knot-grass made;
You bead, you acorn.

Dem. You are too officious,
In her behalf that scorns


Let her alone, speak not of Helena,
Take not her part: for if thou doft intend
Never so little shew of love to her,
Thou shalt aby it.

Ly. Now she holds me not;
Now follow, if thou dar'ft; to try whose right,
Or thine, or mine, is most in Helena.
Dem. Follow ? nay, I'll go with thee cheek by jowl.

[Exeunt Lysander and Demetrius. Her. You, mistress, all this coil is long of you: Nay, go not back.


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