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Romeo and Juliet: Act 2, Scene 4

Romeo and Juliet
Act 2, Scene 4

Verona. A street.

  1. Enter Benvolio and Mercutio.

Mercutio

2 - 3
  1. Where the dev’l should this Romeo be?
  2. Came he not home tonight?

Benvolio

4
  1. Not to his father’s, I spoke with his man.

Mercutio

5 - 6
  1. Why, that same pale hard-hearted wench, that Rosaline,
  2. Torments him so, that he will sure run mad.

Benvolio

7 - 8
  1. Tybalt, the kinsman to old Capulet,
  2. Hath sent a letter to his father’s house.

Mercutio

9
  1. A challenge, on my life.

Benvolio

10
  1. Romeo will answer it.

Mercutio

11
  1. Any man that can write may answer a letter.

Benvolio

12 - 13
  1. Nay, he will answer the letter’s master, how he dares, being
  2. dar’d.

Mercutio

14 - 17
  1. Alas, poor Romeo, he is already dead, stabb’d with a white
  2. wench’s black eye, run through the ear with a love-song, the
  3. very pin of his heart cleft with the blind bow-boy’s
  4. butt-shaft; and is he a man to encounter Tybalt?

Benvolio

18
  1. Why, what is Tybalt?

Mercutio

19 - 25
  1. More than Prince of Cats. O, he’s the courageous captain of
  2. compliments. He fights as you sing prick-song, keeps time,
  3. distance, and proportion; he rests his minim rests, one,
  4. two, and the third in your bosom: the very butcher of a silk
  5. button, a duellist, a duellist; a gentleman of the very
  6. first house, of the first and second cause. Ah, the immortal
  7. passado, the punto reverso, the hay!

Benvolio

26
  1. The what?

Mercutio

27 - 34
  1. The pox of such antic, lisping, affecting phantasimes, these
  2. new tuners of accent! By Jesu, a very good blade! A very
  3. tall man! A very good whore!” Why, is not this a lamentable
  4. thing, grandsire, that we should be thus afflicted with
  5. these strange flies, these fashion-mongers, these
  6. pardon-me’s, who stand so much on the new form, that they
  7. cannot sit at ease on the old bench? O, their bones, their
  8. bones!
  1. Enter Romeo.

Benvolio

36
  1. Here comes Romeo, here comes Romeo.

Mercutio

37 - 44
  1. Without his roe, like a dried herring: O flesh, flesh, how
  2. art thou fishified! Now is he for the numbers that Petrarch
  3. flow’d in. Laura to his lady was a kitchen wench (marry, she
  4. had a better love to berhyme her), Dido a dowdy, Cleopatra a
  5. gypsy, Helen and Hero hildings and harlots, Thisby a grey
  6. eye or so, but not to the purpose. Signior Romeo, bonjour!
  7. There’s a French salutation to your French slop. You gave us
  8. the counterfeit fairly last night.

Romeo

45
  1. Good morrow to you both. What counterfeit did I give you?

Mercutio

46
  1. The slip, sir, the slip, can you not conceive?

Romeo

47 - 48
  1. Pardon, good Mercutio, my business was great, and in such a
  2. case as mine a man may strain courtesy.

Mercutio

49 - 50
  1. That’s as much as to say, such a case as yours constrains a
  2. man to bow in the hams.

Romeo

51
  1. Meaning to cur’sy.

Mercutio

52
  1. Thou hast most kindly hit it.

Romeo

53
  1. A most courteous exposition.

Mercutio

54
  1. Nay, I am the very pink of courtesy.

Romeo

55
  1. Pink for flower.

Mercutio

56
  1. Right.

Romeo

57
  1. Why then is my pump well flower’d.

Mercutio

58 - 60
  1. Sure wit! Follow me this jest now, till thou hast worn out
  2. thy pump, that when the single sole of it is worn, the jest
  3. may remain, after the wearing, solely singular.

Romeo

61
  1. O single-sol’d jest, solely singular for the singleness!

Mercutio

62
  1. Come between us, good Benvolio, my wits faints.

Romeo

63
  1. Swits and spurs, swits and spurs, or I’ll cry a match.

Mercutio

64 - 67
  1. Nay, if our wits run the wild-goose chase, I am done; for
  2. thou hast more of the wild goose in one of thy wits than, I
  3. am sure, I have in my whole five. Was I with you there for
  4. the goose?

Romeo

68 - 69
  1. Thou wast never with me for any thing when thou wast not
  2. there for the goose.

Mercutio

70
  1. I will bite thee by the ear for that jest.

Romeo

71
  1. Nay, good goose, bite not.

Mercutio

72
  1. Thy wit is a very bitter sweeting, it is a most sharp sauce.

Romeo

73
  1. And is it not then well serv’d in to a sweet goose?

Mercutio

74 - 75
  1. O, here’s a wit of cheverel, that stretches from an inch
  2. narrow to an ell broad!

Romeo

76 - 77
  1. I stretch it out for that word broad,” which, added to the
  2. goose, proves thee far and wide a broad goose.

Mercutio

78 - 82
  1. Why, is not this better now than groaning for love? Now art
  2. thou sociable, now art thou Romeo; now art thou what thou
  3. art, by art as well as by nature, for this drivelling love
  4. is like a great natural that runs lolling up and down to
  5. hide his bable in a hole.

Benvolio

83
  1. Stop there, stop there.

Mercutio

84
  1. Thou desirest me to stop in my tale against the hair.

Benvolio

85
  1. Thou wouldst else have made thy tale large.

Mercutio

86 - 88
  1. O, thou art deceiv’d; I would have made it short, for I was
  2. come to the whole depth of my tale, and meant indeed to
  3. occupy the argument no longer.

Romeo

89 - 91
  1. Here’s goodly gear!
  2. Enter Nurse and her man, Peter.
  3. A sail, a sail!

Mercutio

92
  1. Two, two: a shirt and a smock.

Nurse

93
  1. Peter!

Peter

94
  1. Anon!

Nurse

95
  1. My fan, Peter.

Mercutio

96
  1. Good Peter, to hide her face, for her fan’s the fairer face.

Nurse

97
  1. God ye good morrow, gentlemen.

Mercutio

98
  1. God ye good den, fair gentlewoman.

Nurse

99
  1. Is it good den?

Mercutio

100 - 101
  1. ’Tis no less, I tell ye, for the bawdy hand of the dial is
  2. now upon the prick of noon.

Nurse

102
  1. Out upon you, what a man are you?

Romeo

103
  1. One, gentlewoman, that God hath made, himself to mar.

Nurse

104 - 106
  1. By my troth, it is well said; for himself to mar,” quoth
  2. ’a! Gentlemen, can any of you tell me where I may find the
  3. young Romeo?

Romeo

107 - 109
  1. I can tell you, but young Romeo will be older when you have
  2. found him than he was when you sought him. I am the youngest
  3. of that name, for fault of a worse.

Nurse

110
  1. You say well.

Mercutio

111 - 112
  1. Yea, is the worst well? Very well took, i’ faith, wisely,
  2. wisely.

Nurse

113
  1. If you be he, sir, I desire some confidence with you.

Benvolio

114
  1. She will indite him to some supper.

Mercutio

115
  1. A bawd, a bawd, a bawd! So ho!

Romeo

116
  1. What hast thou found?

Mercutio

117 - 127
  1. No hare, sir, unless a hare, sir, in a lenten pie, that is
  2. something stale and hoar ere it be spent.
  3. He walks by them and sings.
  4. An old hare hoar,
  5. And an old hare hoar,
  6. Is very good meat in Lent;
  7. But a hare that is hoar
  8. Is too much for a score,
  9. When it hoars ere it be spent.
  10. Romeo, will you come to your father’s? We’ll to dinner
  11. thither.

Romeo

128
  1. I will follow you.

Mercutio

129 - 131
  1. Farewell, ancient lady, farewell,
  2. Singing.
  3. lady, lady, lady.”
  1. Exeunt Mercutio and Benvolio.

Nurse

133 - 134
  1. I pray you, sir, what saucy merchant was this, that was so
  2. full of his ropery?

Romeo

135 - 137
  1. A gentleman, nurse, that loves to hear himself talk, and
  2. will speak more in a minute than he will stand to in a
  3. month.

Nurse

138 - 144
  1. And ’a speak any thing against me, I’ll take him down, and
  2. ’a were lustier than he is, and twenty such Jacks; and if I
  3. cannot, I’ll find those that shall. Scurvy knave, I am none
  4. of his flirt-gills, I am none of his skains-mates.
  5. She turns to Peter, her man.
  6. And thou must stand by too and suffer every knave to use me
  7. at his pleasure!

Peter

145 - 148
  1. I saw no man use you at his pleasure; if I had, my weapon
  2. should quickly have been out. I warrant you, I dare draw as
  3. soon as another man, if I see occasion in a good quarrel,
  4. and the law on my side.

Nurse

149 - 157
  1. Now, afore God, I am so vex’d that every part about me
  2. quivers. Scurvy knave! Pray you, sir, a word: and as I told
  3. you, my young lady bid me inquire you out; what she bid me
  4. say, I will keep to myself. But first let me tell ye, if ye
  5. should lead her in a fool’s paradise, as they say, it were a
  6. very gross kind of behavior, as they say; for the
  7. gentlewoman is young; and therefore, if you should deal
  8. double with her, truly it were an ill thing to be off’red to
  9. any gentlewoman, and very weak dealing.

Romeo

158 - 159
  1. Nurse, commend me to thy lady and mistress. I protest unto
  2. thee

Nurse

160 - 161
  1. Good heart, and, i’ faith, I will tell her as much. Lord,
  2. Lord, she will be a joyful woman.

Romeo

162
  1. What wilt thou tell her, nurse? Thou dost not mark me.

Nurse

163 - 164
  1. I will tell her, sir, that you do protest, which, as I take
  2. it, is a gentleman-like offer.

Romeo

165 - 168
  1. Bid her devise
  2. Some means to come to shrift this afternoon,
  3. And there she shall at Friar Lawrence’ cell
  4. Be shriv’d and married. Here is for thy pains.

Nurse

169
  1. No, truly, sir, not a penny.

Romeo

170
  1. Go to, I say you shall.

Nurse

171
  1. This afternoon, sir? Well, she shall be there.

Romeo

172 - 178
  1. And stay, good nursebehind the abbey wall
  2. Within this hour my man shall be with thee,
  3. And bring thee cords made like a tackled stair,
  4. Which to the high top-gallant of my joy
  5. Must be my convoy in the secret night.
  6. Farewell, be trusty, and I’ll quit thy pains.
  7. Farewell, commend me to thy mistress.

Nurse

179
  1. Now God in heaven bless thee! Hark you, sir.

Romeo

180
  1. What say’st thou, my dear nurse?

Nurse

181 - 182
  1. Is your man secret? Did you ne’er hear say,
  2. Two may keep counsel, putting one away”?

Romeo

183
  1. ’Warrant thee, my man’s as true as steel.

Nurse

184 - 191
  1. Well, sir, my mistress is the sweetest ladyLord, Lord! When
  2. ’twas a little prating thingO, there is a nobleman in town,
  3. one Paris, that would fain lay knife aboard; but she, good
  4. soul, had as lief see a toad, a very toad, as see him. I
  5. anger her sometimes and tell her that Paris is the properer
  6. man, but I’ll warrant you, when I say so, she looks as pale
  7. as any clout in the versal world. Doth not rosemary and
  8. Romeo begin both with a letter?

Romeo

192
  1. Ay, nurse, what of that? Both with an R.

Nurse

193 - 196
  1. Ah, mocker, that’s the dog’s name. R is for theno, I know
  2. it begins with some other letterand she hath the prettiest
  3. sententious of it, of you and rosemary, that it would do you
  4. good to hear it.

Romeo

197
  1. Commend me to thy lady.

Nurse

198 - 200
  1. Ay, a thousand times.
  2. Exit Romeo.
  3. Peter!

Peter

201
  1. Anon!

Nurse

202 - 203
  1. Handing him her fan.
  2. Before, and apace.
  1. Exit after Peter.
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