Act One Scene One
>>>Start of play
Enter THESEUS, HIPPOLYTA, PHILOSTRATE, and Attendants
---!!! First speech of play
Now, fair Hippolyta, our nuptial hour
Draws on apace; four happy days bring in
Another moon: but, O, methinks, how slow
This old moon wanes! she lingers my desires-
--- lingers my desires-
Four days will quickly steep themselves in night;
Four nights will quickly dream away the time;
And then the moon, like to a silver bow
New-bent in heaven, shall behold the night
Of our solemnities.
--- Of our solemnities.
Stir up the Athenian youth to merriments;
Awake the pert and nimble spirit of mirth;
Turn melancholy forth to funerals;
The pale companion is not for our pomp.
>>> for our pomp.
Hippolyta, I woo'd thee with my sword,
And won thy love, doing thee injuries;
But I will wed thee in another key,
With pomp, with triumph and with revelling.
>>> and with revelling.
Enter EGEUS, HERMIA, LYSANDER, and DEMETRIUS
--- and with revelling.
Happy be Theseus, our renowned duke!
--- our renowned duke!
Thanks, good Egeus: what's the news with thee?
--- news with thee?
Full of vexation come I, with complaint
Against my child, my daughter Hermia.
Stand forth, Demetrius. My noble lord,
This man hath my consent to marry her.
Stand forth, Lysander: and my gracious duke,
This man hath bewitch'd the bosom of my child;
With cunning hast thou filch'd my daughter's heart,
Turn'd her obedience, which is due to me,
To stubborn harshness.
--- To stubborn harshness.
What say you, Hermia? be advised fair maid:
Demetrius is a worthy gentleman.
--- a worthy gentleman.
So is Lysander.
--- So is Lysander.
In himself he is;
But in this kind, wanting your father's voice,
The other must be held the worthier.
--- held the worthier.
I would my father look'd but with my eyes.
--- with my eyes.
Rather your eyes must with his judgment look.
--- his judgment look.
I do entreat your grace to pardon me.
I know not by what power I am made bold,
But I beseech your grace that I may know
The worst that may befall me in this case,
If I refuse to wed Demetrius.
--- to wed Demetrius.
Either to die the death or to abjure
For ever the society of men.
--- society of men.
Relent, sweet Hermia: and, Lysander, yield
Thy crazed title to my certain right.
--- my certain right.
You have her father's love, Demetrius;
Let me have Hermia's: do you marry him.
--- you marry him.
Scornful Lysander! true, he hath my love,
And what is mine my love shall render him.
And she is mine, and all my right of her
I do estate unto Demetrius.
--- estate unto Demetrius.
I am, my lord, as well derived as he,
As well possess'd; my love is more than his;
And, which is more than all these boasts can be,
I am beloved of beauteous Hermia:
Why should not I then prosecute my right?
Demetrius, I'll avouch it to his head,
Made love to Nedar's daughter, Helena,
And won her soul; and she, sweet lady, dotes,
Devoutly dotes, dotes in idolatry,
Upon this spotted and inconstant man.
--- and inconstant man.
I must confess that I have heard so much,
And with Demetrius thought to have spoke thereof;
But, being over-full of self-affairs,
My mind did lose it. But, Demetrius, come;
And come, Egeus; you shall go with me,
I have some private schooling for you both.
Come, my Hippolyta: what cheer, my love?
--- cheer, my love?
With duty and desire we follow you.
>>> we follow you.
Exeunt all but LYSANDER and HERMIA
--- we follow you.
How now, my love! why is your cheek so pale?
How chance the roses there do fade so fast?
--- fade so fast?
Belike for want of rain, which I could well
Beteem them from the tempest of my eyes.
--- of my eyes.
The course of true love never did run smooth;
But either it was different in blood-
--- different in blood-
O cross! - too high to be enthralled too low.
--- enthralled too low.
Or else misgraffed in respect of years -
--- of years -
O spite! - too old to be engaged to young
--- engaged to young
Or else it stood upon the choice of friends-
--- choice of friends-
O Hell! - to choose love by another's eyes
--- by anothers eyes
Hear me, Hermia
I have a widow aunt, a dowager
Of great revenue, and she hath no child:
From Athens is her house remote seven leagues;
And she respects me as her only son.
There, gentle Hermia, may I marry thee;
And to that place the sharp Athenian law
Cannot pursue us. If thou lovest me then,
Steal forth thy father's house to-morrow night;
And in the wood, a league without the town,
Where I did meet thee once with Helena,
There will I stay for thee.
--- stay for thee.
My good Lysander!
I swear to thee, by Cupid's strongest bow,
By his best arrow with the golden head,
By the simplicity of Venus' doves,
By that which knitteth souls and prospers loves,
By all the vows that ever men have broke,
In number more than ever women spoke,
In that same place thou hast appointed me,
To-morrow truly will I meet with thee.
--- meet with thee.
Keep promise, love. Look, here comes Helena.
>>> here comes Helena.
--- here comes Helena.
God speed fair Helena! whither away?
--- Helena! whither away?
Call you me fair? that fair again unsay.
Demetrius loves your fair: O happy fair!
O, teach me how you look, and with what art
You sway the motion of Demetrius' heart.
--- of Demetrius' heart.
I frown upon him, yet he loves me still.
--- loves me still.
O that your frowns would teach my smiles such skill!
--- smiles such skill!
I give him curses, yet he gives me love.
--- gives me love.
O that my prayers could such affection move!
--- such affection move!
The more I hate, the more he follows me.
--- he follows me.
The more I love, the more he hateth me.
--- he hateth me.
His folly, Helena, is no fault of mine.
--- fault of mine.
None, but your beauty: would that fault were mine!
--- fault were mine!
Take comfort: he no more shall see my face;
Lysander and myself will fly this place.
--- fly this place.
Helen, to you our minds we will unfold:
Through Athens' gates have we devised to steal.
--- devised to steal.
And to the wood, where often you and I
Upon faint primrose-beds were wont to lie,
Farewell, sweet playfellow: pray thou for us;
And good luck grant thee thy Demetrius!
>>> thee thy Demetrius!
--- thee thy Demetrius!
I will go tell him of fair Hermia's flight:
Then to the wood will he to-morrow night
Pursue her; and for this intelligence
If I have thanks, it is a dear expense:
But herein mean I to enrich my pain,
To have his sight thither and back again.
>>> and back again.