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Claud. And Hymen now with luckier issue speed's Than this for whom we rendered up this woe.

SCENE IV. A room in LEONATO's house.



Friar. Did I not tell you she was innocent?

Leon. So are the prince and Claudio, who accused her Upon the error that you heard debated: But Margaret was in some fault for this, Although against her will, as it appears In the true course of all the question.

Ant. Well, I am glad that all things sort so well.
Bene. And so am I, being else by faith enforced
To call young Claudio to a reckoning for it..

Leon. Well, daughter, and you gentlewomen all,
Withdraw into a chamber by yourselves,
And when I send for you, come hither mask'd.


[Exeunt Ladies.

The prince and Claudio promised by this hour
To visit me. You know your office, brother:
You must be father to your brother's daughter,
And give her to young Claudio.

Ant. Which I will do with confirm'd countenance.
Bene. Friar, I must entreat your pains, I think.
Friar. To do what, signior?

Bene. To bind me, or undo me; one of them.
Signior Leonato, truth it is, good signior,
Your niece regards me with an eye of favour.

Leon. That eye my daughter lent her: 'tis most true.
Bene. And I do with an eye of love requite her.
Leon. The sight whereof I think you had from me,
From Claudio and the prince: but what's your will?
Bene. Your answer, sir, is enigmatical:

But, for my will, my will is your good will
May stand with ours, this day to be conjoin'd
In the state of honourable marriage:

In which, good friar, I shall desire your help.
Leon. My heart is with your liking.

Here comes the prince and Claudio.

And my help.

Enter DON PEDRO and CLAUDIO, and two or three others.

D. Pedro. Good morrow to this fair assembly.

Leon. Good morrow, prince; good morrow, Claudio:

We here attend you. Are you yet determined



To-day to marry with my brother's daughter?
Claud. I'll hold my mind, were she an Ethiope.
Leon. Call her forth, brother; here's the friar ready.
[Exit Antonio.

D. Pedro. Good morrow, Benedick. Why, what's the matter,

That you have such a February face,

So full of frost, of storm and cloudiness?

Claud. I think he thinks upon the savage bull. Tush, fear not, man; we'll tip thy horns with gold And all Europa shall rejoice at thee,

As once Europa did at lusty Jove,

When he would play the noble beast in love.

Bene. Bull Jove, sir, had an amiable low;

And some such strange bull leap'd your father's cow,
And got a calf in that same noble feat

Much like to you, for you have just his bleat.



Claud. For this I owe you here comes other reckonings.

Re-enter ANTONIO, with the Ladies masked.

Which is the lady I must seize upon?

Ant. This same is she, and I do give you her.

Claud. Why, then she's mine. Sweet, let me see your


Leon. No, that you shall not, till you take her hand Before this friar and swear to marry her.

Claud. Give me your hand: before this holy friar,

I am your husband, if you like of me.

Hero. And when I lived, I was your other wife:

Unmasking. And when you loved, you were my other husband. Claud. Another Hero!


Nothing certainer :

One Hero died defiled, but I do live,

And surely as I live, I am a maid.

D. Pedro. The former Hero! Hero that is dead!

Leon. She died, my lord, but whiles her slander lived.

Friar. All this amazement can I qualify;

When after that the holy rites are ended,


I'll tell you largely of fair Hero's death:
Meantime let wonder seem familiar,


And to the chapel let us presently.

Bene. Soft and fair, friar. Which is Beatrice?
Beat. [Unmasking] I answer to that name.

your will?

What is

Why, no; no more than reason.

Bene. Do not you love me?



Bene. Why, then your uncle and the prince and Claudio Have been deceived; they swore you did.

Beat. Do not you love me? Bene. Troth, no; no more than reason. Beat. Why, then my cousin Margaret and Ursula Are much deceived; for they did swear you did. Bene. They swore that you were almost sick for me. Beat. They swore that you were well-nigh dead for me. Bene. "Tis no such matter. Then you do not love me?

Beat. No, truly, but in friendly recompense.

Leon. Come, cousin, I am sure you love the gentleman. Claud. And I'll be sworn upon't that he loves her; For here's a paper written in his own hand,

A halting sonnet of his own pure brain,

Fashion'd to Beatrice.


And here's another

Writ in my cousin's hand, stolen from her pocket,
Containing her affection unto Benedick.



Bene. A miracle! here's our own hands against our hearts. Come, I will have thee; but, by this light, I take thee for pity.

Beat. I would not deny you; but, by this good day, I yield upon great persuasion; and partly to save your life, for I was told you were in a consumption. Bene. Peace! I will stop your mouth.

[Kissing her.

D. Pedro. How dost thou, Benedick, the married man? Bene. I'll tell thee what, prince; a college of wit-crackers. cannot flout me out of my humour. Dost thou think I care for a satire or an epigram? No: if a man will be beaten with brains, a' shall wear nothing handsome about him. In brief, since I do purpose to marry, I will think nothing to any purpose that the world can say against it; and therefore never flout at me for what I have said against it; for man is a giddy thing, and this is my conclusion. part, Claudio, I did think to have beaten thee; but in that For thy thou art like to be my kinsman, live unbruised and love my cousin.

Claud. I had well hoped thou wouldst have denied Beatrice, that I might have cudgelled thee out of thy single life, to make thee a double-dealer; which, out of question, thou wilt be, if my cousin do not look exceeding narrowly to thee.

Bene. Come, come, we are friends. let's have a dance ere we are married, that we may lighten our own hearts and our wives' heels.

Leon. We'll have dancing afterward.


Bene. First, of my word; therefore play, music. Prince,

thou art sad; get thee a wife, get thee a wife: there is no staff more reverend than one tipped with horn.

Enter a Messenger.

Mess. My lord, your brother John is ta'en in flight, And brought with armed men back to Messina.

Bene. Think not on him till to-morrow: I'll devise thee

brave punishments for him. Strike up, pipers.




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SCENE I. The king of Navarre's park.


King. Let fame, that all hunt after in their lives,

Live register'd upon our brazen tombs

And then grace us in the disgrace of death;

When, spite of cormorant devouring Time,

The endeavour of this present breath may buy

That honour which shall bate his scythe's keen edge
And make us heirs of all eternity.

Therefore, brave conquerors,-for so you are,
That war against your own affections
And the huge army of the world's desires,—
Our late edict shall strongly stand in force :
Navarre shall be the wonder of the world;
Our court shall be a little Academe,
Still and contemplative in living art.
You three, Biron, Dumain, and Longaville,

Have sworn for three years' term to live with me
My fellow-scholars and to keep those statutes


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