A Midsummer Night’s Dream
Act 3, Scene 1
In the woods.
- Enter the Clowns: Quince, Snug, Bottom, Flute, Snout, and
- Starveling. Titania still sleeps.
- Are we all met?
Quince4 - 7
- Pat, pat; and here’s a marvail’s convenient place for our
- rehearsal. This green plot shall be our stage, this hawthorn
- brake our tiring-house, and we will do it in action as we
- will do it before the Duke.
- Peter Quince!
- What sayest thou, bully Bottom?
Bottom10 - 12
- There are things in this comedy of Pyramus and Thisbe that
- will never please. First, Pyramus must draw a sword to kill
- himself; which the ladies cannot abide. How answer you that?
- By’r lakin, a parlous fear.
- I believe we must leave the killing out, when all is done.
Bottom15 - 20
- Not a whit! I have a device to make all well. Write me a
- prologue, and let the prologue seem to say we will do no
- harm with our swords, and that Pyramus is not kill’d indeed;
- and for the more better assurance, tell them that I Pyramus
- am not Pyramus, but Bottom the weaver. This will put them
- out of fear.
Quince21 - 22
- Well; we will have such a prologue, and it shall be written
- in eight and six.
- No; make it two more; let it be written in eight and eight.
- Will not the ladies be afeard of the lion?
- I fear it, I promise you.
Bottom26 - 29
- Masters, you ought to consider with yourselves, to bring in
- (God shield us!) a lion among ladies, is a most dreadful
- thing; for there is not a more fearful wild-fowl than your
- lion living; and we ought to look to’t.
- Therefore another prologue must tell he is not a lion.
Bottom31 - 39
- Nay; you must name his name, and half his face must be seen
- through the lion’s neck, and he himself muse speak through,
- saying thus, or to the same defect: “Ladies,” or “Fair
- ladies, I would wish you,” or “I would request you,” or “I
- would entreat you, not to fear, not to tremble: my life for
- yours. If you think I come hither as a lion, it were pity of
- my life. No! I am no such thing; I am a man as other men
- are”; and there indeed let him name his name, and tell them
- plainly he is Snug the joiner.
Quince40 - 42
- Well; it shall be so. But there is two hard things: that is,
- to bring the moonlight into a chamber; for you know, Pyramus
- and Thisbe meet by moonlight.
- Doth the moon shine that night we play our play?
Bottom44 - 45
- A calendar, a calendar! Look in the almanac. Find out
- moonshine, find out moonshine.
- Yes; it doth shine that night.
Bottom47 - 49
- Why then may you leave a casement of the great chamber
- window (where we play) open; and the moon may shine in at
- the casement.
Quince50 - 54
- Ay; or else one must come in with a bush of thorns and a
- lantern, and say he comes to disfigure, or to present, the
- person of Moonshine. Then, there is another thing: we must
- have a wall in the great chamber; for Pyramus and Thisbe
- (says the story) did talk through the chink of a wall.
- You can never bring in a wall. What say you, Bottom?
Bottom56 - 59
- Some man or other must present Wall; and let him have some
- plaster, or some loam, or some rough-cast about him, to
- signify wall; or let him hold his fingers thus, and through
- that cranny shall Pyramus and Thisbe whisper.
Quince60 - 63
- If that may be, then all is well. Come, sit down, every
- mother’s son, and rehearse your parts. Pyramus, you begin.
- When you have spoken your speech, enter into that brake; and
- so every one according to his cue.
- Enter Puck, behind.
Robin65 - 68
- What hempen home-spuns have we swagg’ring here,
- So near the cradle of the Fairy Queen?
- What, a play toward? I’ll be an auditor,
- An actor too perhaps, if I see cause.
- Speak, Pyramus. Thisbe, stand forth.
- “Thisbe, the flowers of odious savors sweet”—
- Odorous, odorous.
Bottom72 - 75
- —“odors savors sweet;
- So hath thy breath, my dearest Thisbe dear.
- But hark; a voice! Stay thou but here a while,
- And by and by I will to thee appear.”
- A stranger Pyramus than e’er played here.
- Must I speak now?
Quince80 - 81
- Ay, marry, must you; for you must understand he goes but to
- see a noise that he heard, and is to come again.
Flute82 - 86
- “Most radiant Pyramus, most lily-white of hue,
- Of color like the red rose on triumphant brier,
- Most brisky juvenal, and eke most lovely Jew,
- As true as truest horse, that yet would never tire,
- I’ll meet thee, Pyramus, at Ninny’s tomb.”
Quince87 - 90
- “Ninus’ tomb,” man. Why, you must not speak that yet. That
- you answer to Pyramus. You speak all your part at once, cues
- and all. Pyramus, enter. Your cue is past; it is “never
- O—“As true as truest horse, that yet would never tire.”
- Enter Puck, and Bottom with an ass’s head.
- “If I were fair, Thisbe, I were only thine.”
Quince94 - 95
- O monstrous! O strange! We are haunted.
- Pray, masters, fly, masters! Help!
- Exeunt Quince, Snug, Flute, Snout, and Starveling.
Robin97 - 102
- I’ll follow you, I’ll lead you about a round,
- Through bog, through bush, through brake, through brier:
- Sometime a horse I’ll be, sometime a hound,
- A hog, a headless bear, sometime a fire,
- And neigh, and bark, and grunt, and roar, and burn,
- Like horse, hound, hog, bear, fire, at every turn.
Bottom104 - 105
- Why do they run away? This is a knavery of them to make me
- Enter Snout.
- O Bottom, thou art chang’d! What do I see on thee?
- What do you see? You see an ass-head of your own, do you?
- Exit Snout.
- Enter Quince.
- Bless thee. Bottom, bless thee! Thou art translated.
Bottom113 - 121
- I see their knavery. This is to make an ass of me, to fright
- me, if they could; but I will not stir from this place, do
- what they can. I will walk up and down here, and I will
- sing, that they shall hear I am not afraid.
- The woosel cock so black of hue,
- With orange-tawny bill,
- The throstle with his note so true,
- The wren with little quill—
Titania122 - 123
- What angel wakes me from my flow’ry bed?
Bottom124 - 130
- The finch, the sparrow, and the lark,
- The plain-song cuckoo grey,
- Whose note full many a man doth mark,
- And dares not answer nay—
- For indeed, who would set his wit to so foolish a bird? Who
- would give a bird the lie, though he cry “cuckoo” never so?
Titania131 - 135
- I pray thee, gentle mortal, sing again.
- Mine ear is much enamored of thy note;
- So is mine eye enthralled to thy shape;
- And thy fair virtue’s force (perforce) doth move me
- On the first view to say, to swear, I love thee.
Bottom136 - 140
- Methinks, mistress, you should have little reason for that.
- And yet, to say the truth, reason and love keep little
- company together now-a-days. The more the pity that some
- honest neighbors will not make them friends. Nay, I can
- gleek upon occasion.
- Thou art as wise as thou art beautiful.
Bottom142 - 143
- Not so, neither; but if I had wit enough to get out of this
- wood, I have enough to serve mine owe turn.
Titania144 - 154
- Out of this wood do not desire to go;
- Thou shalt remain here, whether thou wilt or no.
- I am a spirit of no common rate;
- The summer still doth tend upon my state;
- And I do love thee; therefore go with me.
- I’ll give thee fairies to attend on thee;
- And they shall fetch thee jewels from the deep,
- And sing while thou on pressed flowers dost sleep.
- And I will purge thy mortal grossness so,
- That thou shalt like an aery spirit go.
- Peaseblossom! Cobweb! Moth! And Mustardseed!
- Enter four Fairies—Peaseblossom, Cobweb, Moth, and
- And I.
- And I.
- And I.
- Where shall we go?
Titania162 - 172
- Be kind and courteous to this gentleman,
- Hop in his walks and gambol in his eyes;
- Feed him with apricots and dewberries,
- With purple grapes, green figs, and mulberries;
- The honey-bags steal from the humble-bees,
- And for night-tapers crop their waxen thighs,
- And light them at the fiery glow-worm’s eyes,
- To have my love to bed and to arise;
- And pluck the wings from painted butterflies,
- To fan the moonbeams from his sleeping eyes.
- Nod to him, elves, and do him courtesies.
- Hail, mortal!
Bottom177 - 178
- I cry your worships mercy, heartily. I beseech your
- worship’s name.
Bottom180 - 182
- I shall desire you of more acquaintance, good Master Cobweb.
- If I cut my finger, I shall make bold with you. Your name,
- honest gentleman?
Bottom184 - 187
- I pray you commend me to Mistress Squash, your mother, and
- to Master Peascod, your father. Good Master Peaseblossom, I
- shall desire you of more acquaintance too. Your name, I
- beseech you, sir?
Bottom189 - 193
- Good Master Mustardseed, I know your patience well. That
- same cowardly, giant-like ox-beef hath devour’d many a
- gentleman of your house. I promise you your kindred hath
- made my eyes water ere now. I desire you of more
- acquaintance, good Master Mustardseed.
Titania194 - 198
- Come wait upon him; lead him to my bower.
- The moon methinks looks with a wat’ry eye;
- And when she weeps, weeps every little flower,
- Lamenting some enforced chastity.
- Tie up my lover’s tongue, bring him silently.