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Midsummer Night’s Dream: Act 2, Scene 1

Midsummer Night’s Dream
Act 2, Scene 1

Scene 1

In the woods near Athens.

  1. Enter a Fairy at one door and Robin Goodfellow (Puck) at
  2. another.

Robin

3
  1. How now, spirit, whither wander you?

A Fairy

4 - 19
  1. Over hill, over dale,
  2. Thorough bush, thorough brier,
  3. Over park, over pale,
  4. Thorough flood, thorough fire,
  5. I do wander every where,
  6. Swifter than the moon’s sphere;
  7. And I serve the Fairy Queen,
  8. To dew her orbs upon the green.
  9. The cowslips tall her pensioners be,
  10. In their gold coats spots you see:
  11. Those be rubies, fairy favors,
  12. In those freckles live their savors.
  13. I must go seek some dewdrops here,
  14. And hang a pearl in every cowslip’s ear.
  15. Farewell, thou lob of spirits; I’ll be gone.
  16. Our Queen and all her elves come here anon.

Robin

20 - 33
  1. The King doth keep his revels here tonight;
  2. Take heed the Queen come not within his sight;
  3. For Oberon is passing fell and wrath,
  4. Because that she as her attendant hath
  5. A lovely boy stolen from an Indian king;
  6. She never had so sweet a changeling.
  7. And jealous Oberon would have the child
  8. Knight of his train, to trace the forests wild;
  9. But she, perforce, withholds the loved boy,
  10. Crowns him with flowers, and makes him all her joy.
  11. And now they never meet in grove or green,
  12. By fountain clear, or spangled starlight sheen,
  13. But they do square, that all their elves for fear
  14. Creep into acorn-cups, and hide them there.

A Fairy

34 - 44
  1. Either I mistake your shape and making quite,
  2. Or else you are that shrewd and knavish sprite
  3. Call’d Robin Goodfellow. Are not you he
  4. That frights the maidens of the villagery,
  5. Skim milk, and sometimes labor in the quern,
  6. And bootless make the breathless huswife churn,
  7. And sometime make the drink to bear no barm,
  8. Mislead night-wanderers, laughing at their harm?
  9. Those that Hobgoblin call you, and sweet Puck,
  10. You do their work, and they shall have good luck.
  11. Are not you he?

Robin

45 - 61
  1.                 Thou speakest aright;
  2. I am that merry wanderer of the night.
  3. I jest to Oberon and make him smile
  4. When I a fat and bean-fed horse beguile,
  5. Neighing in likeness of a filly foal;
  6. And sometime lurk I in a gossip’s bowl,
  7. In very likeness of a roasted crab,
  8. And when she drinks, against her lips I bob,
  9. And on her withered dewlop pour the ale.
  10. The wisest aunt, telling the saddest tale,
  11. Sometime for three-foot stool mistaketh me;
  12. Then slip I from her bum, down topples she,
  13. And tailor cries, and falls into a cough;
  14. And then the whole quire hold their hips and loff,
  15. And waxen in their mirth, and neeze, and swear
  16. A merrier hour was never wasted there.
  17. But room, fairy! Here comes Oberon.

A Fairy

62
  1. And here my mistress. Would that he were gone!
  1. Enter the King of Fairies Oberon at one door with his Train,
  2. and the Queen Titania at another with hers.

Oberon

65
  1. Ill met by moonlight, proud Titania.

Titania

66 - 67
  1. What, jealous Oberon? Fairies, skip hence
  2. I have forsworn his bed and company.

Oberon

68
  1. Tarry, rash wanton! Am not I thy lord?

Titania

69 - 78
  1. Then I must be thy lady; but I know
  2. When thou hast stolen away from fairy land,
  3. And in the shape of Corin sat all day,
  4. Playing on pipes of corn, and versing love,
  5. To amorous Phillida. Why art thou here
  6. Come from the farthest steep of India?
  7. But that, forsooth, the bouncing Amazon,
  8. Your buskin’d mistress, and your warrior love,
  9. To Theseus must be wedded, and you come
  10. To give their bed joy and prosperity.

Oberon

79 - 85
  1. How canst thou thus for shame, Titania,
  2. Glance at my credit with Hippolyta,
  3. Knowing I know thy love to Theseus?
  4. Didst not thou lead him through the glimmering night
  5. From Perigenia, whom he ravished?
  6. And make him with fair Aegles break his faith,
  7. With Ariadne, and Antiopa?

Titania

86 - 122
  1. These are the forgeries of jealousy;
  2. And never, since the middle summer’s spring,
  3. Met we on hill, in dale, forest, or mead,
  4. By paved fountain or by rushy brook,
  5. Or in the beached margent of the sea,
  6. To dance our ringlets to the whistling wind,
  7. But with thy brawls thou hast disturb’d our sport.
  8. Therefore the winds, piping to us in vain,
  9. As in revenge, have suck’d up from the sea
  10. Contagious fogs; which, falling in the land,
  11. Hath every pelting river made so proud
  12. That they have overborne their continents.
  13. The ox hath therefore stretch’d his yoke in vain,
  14. The ploughman lost his sweat, and the green corn
  15. Hath rotted ere his youth attain’d a beard.
  16. The fold stands empty in the drowned field,
  17. And crows are fatted with the murrion flock;
  18. The nine men’s morris is fill’d up with mud,
  19. And the quaint mazes in the wanton green,
  20. For lack of tread, are undistinguishable.
  21. The human mortals want their winter here;
  22. No night is now with hymn or carol blest.
  23. Therefore the moon (the governess of floods),
  24. Pale in her anger, washes all the air,
  25. That rheumatic diseases do abound.
  26. And thorough this distemperature, we see
  27. The seasons alter: hoary-headed frosts
  28. Fall in the fresh lap of the crimson rose,
  29. And on old Hiems’ thin and icy crown
  30. An odorous chaplet of sweet summer buds
  31. Is, as in mockery, set; the spring, the summer,
  32. The childing autumn, angry winter, change
  33. Their wonted liveries; and the mazed world,
  34. By their increase, now knows not which is which.
  35. And this same progeny of evils comes
  36. From our debate, from our dissension;
  37. We are their parents and original.

Oberon

123 - 126
  1. Do you amend it then; it lies in you.
  2. Why should Titania cross her Oberon?
  3. I do but beg a little changeling boy,
  4. To be my henchman.

Titania

127 - 143
  1.                    Set your heart at rest;
  2. The fairy land buys not the child of me.
  3. His mother was a vot’ress of my order,
  4. And in the spiced Indian air, by night,
  5. Full often hath she gossip’d by my side,
  6. And sat with me on Neptune’s yellow sands,
  7. Marking th’ embarked traders on the flood;
  8. When we have laugh’d to see the sails conceive
  9. And grow big-bellied with the wanton wind;
  10. Which she, with pretty and with swimming gait,
  11. Following (her womb then rich with my young squire)
  12. Would imitate, and sail upon the land
  13. To fetch me trifles, and return again,
  14. As from a voyage, rich with merchandise.
  15. But she, being mortal, of that boy did die,
  16. And for her sake do I rear up her boy;
  17. And for her sake I will not part with him.

Oberon

144
  1. How long within this wood intend you stay?

Titania

145 - 148
  1. Perchance till after Theseus’ wedding-day.
  2. If you will patiently dance in our round,
  3. And see our moonlight revels, go with us;
  4. If not, shun me, and I will spare your haunts.

Oberon

149
  1. Give me that boy, and I will go with thee.

Titania

150 - 151
  1. Not for thy fairy kingdom. Fairies, away!
  2. We shall chide downright, if I longer stay.
  1. Exeunt Titania and her Train.

Oberon

153 - 161
  1. Well; go thy way. Thou shalt not from this grove
  2. Till I torment thee for this injury.
  3. My gentle Puck, come hither. Thou rememb’rest
  4. Since once I sat upon a promontory,
  5. And heard a mermaid on a dolphin’s back
  6. Uttering such dulcet and harmonious breath
  7. That the rude sea grew civil at her song,
  8. And certain stars shot madly from their spheres,
  9. To hear the sea-maid’s music?

Robin

162
  1.                               I remember.

Oberon

163 - 182
  1. That very time I saw (but thou couldst not),
  2. Flying between the cold moon and the earth,
  3. Cupid all arm’d. A certain aim he took
  4. At a fair vestal throned by the west,
  5. And loos’d his love-shaft smartly from his bow,
  6. As it should pierce a hundred thousand hearts;
  7. But I might see young Cupid’s fiery shaft
  8. Quench’d in the chaste beams of the wat’ry moon,
  9. And the imperial vot’ress passed on,
  10. In maiden meditation, fancy-free.
  11. Yet mark’d I where the bolt of Cupid fell.
  12. It fell upon a little western flower,
  13. Before milk-white, now purple with love’s wound,
  14. And maidens call it love-in-idleness.
  15. Fetch me that flow’r; the herb I showed thee once.
  16. The juice of it on sleeping eyelids laid
  17. Will make or man or woman madly dote
  18. Upon the next live creature that it sees.
  19. Fetch me this herb, and be thou here again
  20. Ere the leviathan can swim a league.

Robin

183 - 184
  1. I’ll put a girdle round about the earth
  2. In forty minutes.
  1. Exit.

Oberon

186 - 197
  1.                   Having once this juice,
  2. I’ll watch Titania when she is asleep,
  3. And drop the liquor of it in her eyes;
  4. The next thing then she waking looks upon
  5. (Be it on lion, bear, or wolf, or bull,
  6. On meddling monkey, or on busy ape),
  7. She shall pursue it with the soul of love.
  8. And ere I take this charm from off her sight
  9. (As I can take it with another herb),
  10. I’ll make her render up her page to me.
  11. But who comes here? I am invisible,
  12. And I will overhear their conference.
  1. Enter Demetrius, Helena following him.

Demetrius

199 - 205
  1. I love thee not; therefore pursue me not.
  2. Where is Lysander and fair Hermia?
  3. The one I’ll slay; the other slayeth me.
  4. Thou toldst me they were stol’n unto this wood;
  5. And here am I, and wode within this wood,
  6. Because I cannot meet my Hermia.
  7. Hence, get thee gone, and follow me no more.

Helena

206 - 209
  1. You draw me, you hard-hearted adamant;
  2. But yet you draw not iron, for my heart
  3. Is true as steel. Leave you your power to draw,
  4. And I shall have no power to follow you.

Demetrius

210 - 212
  1. Do I entice you? Do I speak you fair?
  2. Or rather do I not in plainest truth
  3. Tell you I do not nor I cannot love you?

Helena

213 - 221
  1. And even for that do I love you the more;
  2. I am your spaniel; and, Demetrius,
  3. The more you beat me, I will fawn on you.
  4. Use me but as your spaniel; spurn me, strike me,
  5. Neglect me, lose me; only give me leave,
  6. Unworthy as I am, to follow you.
  7. What worser place can I beg in your love
  8. (And yet a place of high respect with me)
  9. Than to be used as you use your dog?

Demetrius

222 - 223
  1. Tempt not too much the hatred of my spirit,
  2. For I am sick when I do look on thee.

Helena

224
  1. And I am sick when I look not on you.

Demetrius

225 - 230
  1. You do impeach your modesty too much,
  2. To leave the city and commit yourself
  3. Into the hands of one that loves you not;
  4. To trust the opportunity of night,
  5. And the ill counsel of a desert place,
  6. With the rich worth of your virginity.

Helena

231 - 237
  1. Your virtue is my privilege. For that
  2. It is not night when I do see your face,
  3. Therefore I think I am not in the night,
  4. Nor doth this wood lack worlds of company,
  5. For you in my respect are all the world.
  6. Then how can it be said I am alone,
  7. When all the world is here to look on me?

Demetrius

238 - 239
  1. I’ll run from thee, and hide me in the brakes,
  2. And leave thee to the mercy of wild beasts.

Helena

240 - 245
  1. The wildest hath not such a heart as you.
  2. Run when you will; the story shall be chang’d:
  3. Apollo flies, and Daphne holds the chase;
  4. The dove pursues the griffin; the mild hind
  5. Makes speed to catch the tigerbootless speed,
  6. When cowardice pursues and valor flies.

Demetrius

246 - 248
  1. I will not stay thy questions. Let me go;
  2. Or if thou follow me, do not believe
  3. But I shall do thee mischief in the wood.

Helena

249 - 256
  1. Ay, in the temple, in the town, the field,
  2. You do me mischief. Fie, Demetrius!
  3. Your wrongs do set a scandal on my sex.
  4. We cannot fight for love, as men may do.
  5. We should be woo’d, and were not made to woo.
  6. Exit Demetrius.
  7. I’ll follow thee and make a heaven of hell,
  8. To die upon the hand I love so well.
  1. Exit.

Oberon

258 - 261
  1. Fare thee well, nymph. Ere he do leave this grove,
  2. Thou shalt fly him, and he shall seek thy love.
  3. Enter Puck.
  4. Hast thou the flower there? Welcome, wanderer.

Robin

262
  1. Ay, there it is.

Oberon

263 - 282
  1.                  I pray thee give it me.
  2. I know a bank where the wild thyme blows,
  3. Where oxlips and the nodding violet grows,
  4. Quite over-canopied with luscious woodbine,
  5. With sweet musk-roses and with eglantine;
  6. There sleeps Titania sometime of the night,
  7. Lull’d in these flowers with dances and delight;
  8. And there the snake throws her enamell’d skin,
  9. Weed wide enough to wrap a fairy in;
  10. And with the juice of this I’ll streak her eyes,
  11. And make her full of hateful fantasies.
  12. Take thou some of it, and seek through this grove:
  13. A sweet Athenian lady is in love
  14. With a disdainful youth; anoint his eyes,
  15. But do it when the next thing he espies
  16. May be the lady. Thou shalt know the man
  17. By the Athenian garments he hath on.
  18. Effect it with some care, that he may prove
  19. More fond on her than she upon her love;
  20. And look thou meet me ere the first cock crow.

Robin

283
  1. Fear not, my lord! Your servant shall do so.
  1. Exeunt.
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