Love's Labour's Lost


Text
Act I
Act II
Act III
Act IV
Act V
Enter the Princess, Rosaline, Maria, and Katharine


PRINCESS

Sweet hearts, we shall be rich ere we depart

If fairings come thus plentifully in.
fairing (n.) gift, present

A lady walled about with diamonds!

Look you what I have from the loving King.


ROSALINE

Madam, came nothing else along with that?


PRINCESS

Nothing but this? Yes, as much love in rhyme

As would be crammed up in a sheet of paper,

Writ o' both sides the leaf, margin and all,

That he was fain to seal on Cupid's name.
seal (v.) 6 put a seal in a particular place


ROSALINE

That was the way to make his godhead wax,
wax (v.) 2 grow, increase, enlarge

For he hath been five thousand year a boy.


KATHARINE

Ay, and a shrewd unhappy gallows too.
gallows (n.) someone who deserves to be hanged
shrewd (adj.) 5 wily, cunning, mischievous
unhappy (adj.) 4 trouble-causing, bringing misfortune


ROSALINE

You'll ne'er be friends with him; 'a killed your sister.


KATHARINE

He made her melancholy, sad, and heavy;
heavy (adj.) 1 sorrowful, sad, gloomy See Topics: Frequency count
sad (adj.) 1 serious, grave, solemn See Topics: Frequency count

And so she died. Had she been light, like you,
light (adj.) 2 joyful, merry, light-hearted

Of such a merry, nimble, stirring spirit,

She might ha' been a grandam ere she died.
grandam (n.) grandmother See Topics: Family

And so may you, for a light heart lives long.


ROSALINE

What's your dark meaning, mouse, of this light word?
dark (adj.) 3 undivulged, secret, unrevealed
light (adj.) 6 facile, frivolous, of no consequence
word (n.) 1 remark, speech, utterance


KATHARINE

A light condition in a beauty dark.
condition (n.) 1 disposition, temper, mood, character
light (adj.) 1 promiscuous, licentious, immoral, wanton


ROSALINE

We need more light to find your meaning out.


KATHARINE

You'll mar the light by taking it in snuff;
snuff (n.) 1 resentment, huff, pique

Therefore, I'll darkly end the argument.
darkly (adv.) 3 obscurely, cryptically, enigmatically


ROSALINE

Look what you do, you do it still i'th' dark.
still (adv.) 1 constantly, always, continually See Topics: Frequency count


KATHARINE

So do not you, for you are a light wench.


ROSALINE

Indeed I weigh not you, and therefore light.
weigh (v.) 1 balance [as in scales], poise, match


KATHARINE

You weigh me not? O, that's you care not for me!
weigh (v.) 2 consider, take into account


ROSALINE

Great reason, for past cure is still past care.
still (adv.) 1 constantly, always, continually See Topics: Frequency count


PRINCESS

Well bandied both! A set of wit well played.
bandy (v.) 1 exchange, swap, send to and fro
set (n.) 3 [cards, tennis] series of games
wit (n.) 2 mental sharpness, acumen, quickness, ingenuity See Topics: Frequency count

But, Rosaline, you have a favour too –
favour (n.) 5 mark of favour, gift, token [often a love-token]

Who sent it? And what is it?


ROSALINE

                         I would you knew.

An if my face were but as fair as yours,

My favour were as great. Be witness this –
favour (n.) 1 [facial] appearance, countenance, features, looks

Nay, I have verses too, I thank Berowne;

The numbers true, and, were the numbering too,
number (n.) 1 (plural) verses, lines
numbering (n.) estimation, evaluation, assessment
true (adj.) 9 correct, accurate, exact

I were the fairest goddess on the ground.

I am compared to twenty thousand fairs.
fair (n.) 1 fair face, beauty

O, he hath drawn my picture in his letter!


PRINCESS

Anything like?


ROSALINE

Much in the letters, nothing in the praise.
letter (n.) 2 lettering, written form


PRINCESS

Beauteous as ink – a good conclusion.


KATHARINE

Fair as a text B in a copy-book.
text (n.) 2 text-hand style [of handwriting]


ROSALINE

'Ware pencils, ho! Let me not die your debtor,
pencil (n.) finely-pointed paint-brush

My red dominical, my golden letter.
dominical (n.) [liturgy] letter printed prominently so as to identify the Sundays in the church year

O that your face were not so full of O's!
O (n.) 3 spot, pimple


PRINCESS

A pox of that jest, and I beshrew all shrews.
beshrew, 'shrew (v.) 2 blame, censure, take to task, wish mischief on
shrew (n.) vexatious person, troubleseome individual [of either sex]

But, Katharine, what was sent to you from fair Dumaine?


KATHARINE

Madam, this glove.


PRINCESS

                         Did he not send you twain?


KATHARINE

Yes, madam; and, moreover,

Some thousand verses of a faithful lover;

A huge translation of hypocrisy,
translation (n.) expression, rendering, communication

Vilely compiled, profound simplicity.
profound (adj.) 3 complete, utter, total
simplicity (n.) 3 naivety, foolishness, artlessness


MARIA

This, and these pearls, to me sent Longaville.

The letter is too long by half a mile.


PRINCESS

I think no less. Dost thou not wish in heart

The chain were longer and the letter short?


MARIA

Ay, or I would these hands might never part.


PRINCESS

We are wise girls to mock our lovers so.


ROSALINE

They are worse fools to purchase mocking so.
purchase (v.) 2 deserve, earn, merit

That same Berowne I'll torture ere I go.

O that I knew he were but in by th' week!
week, in by the hopelessly caught, trapped

How I would make him fawn, and beg, and seek,

And wait the season, and observe the times,
season (n.) 2 opportunity, favourable moment
time (n.) 8 right moment, favourable opportunity

And spend his prodigal wits in bootless rhymes,
bootless (adj.) useless, worthless, fruitless, unavailing
prodigal (adj.) 1 wastefully lavish, foolishly extravagant
wits, also five wits faculties of the mind (common wit, imagination, fantasy, estimation, memory) or body (the five senses)

And shape his service wholly to my hests,
hest (n.) command, behest, order

And make him proud to make me proud that jests!

So pair-taunt-like would I o'ersway his state
oversway (v.) prevail upon, override, overturn
pair-taunt-like (adv.) like a winning hand in the card game ‘post and pair’

That he should be my fool, and I his fate.


PRINCESS

None are so surely caught, when they are catched,
wit (n.) 1 intelligence, wisdom, good sense, mental ability See Topics: Frequency count

As wit turned fool. Folly, in wisdom hatched,

Hath wisdom's warrant and the help of school
school (n.) 3 schooling, learning, study

And wit's own grace to grace a learned fool.
grace (v.) 1 favour, add merit to, do honour to


ROSALINE

The blood of youth burns not with such excess

As gravity's revolt to wantonness.
gravity (n.) 1 respectability, authority, dignified position
revolt (n.) 1 betrayal, change of heart, faithlessness
wantonness (n.) 3 lust, lasciviousness, promiscuity


MARIA

Folly in fools bears not so strong a note
note (n.) 12 reproach, stigma, mark of disgrace

As foolery in the wise when wit doth dote,
dote (v.) become deranged, behave foolishly
wit (n.) 1 intelligence, wisdom, good sense, mental ability See Topics: Frequency count

Since all the power thereof it doth apply
power (n.) 4 force, strength, might

To prove, by wit, worth in simplicity.
simplicity (n.) 3 naivety, foolishness, artlessness
wit (n.) 3 reasoning, thinking, deliberation

Enter Boyet


PRINCESS

Here comes Boyet, and mirth is in his face.


BOYET

O, I am stabbed with laughter! Where's her grace?


PRINCESS

Thy news Boyet?


BOYET

                         Prepare, madam, prepare!

Arm, wenches, arm! Encounters mounted are
encounter (n.) 5 skirmish, assault, engagement

Against your peace. Love doth approach disguised,

Armed in arguments. You'll be surprised.
argument (n.) 4 discussion, debate, dialogue
surprise (v.) 4 take off guard

Muster your wits, stand in your own defence,
wits, also five wits faculties of the mind (common wit, imagination, fantasy, estimation, memory) or body (the five senses)

Or hide your heads like cowards and fly hence.


PRINCESS

Saint Denis to Saint Cupid! What are they

That charge their breath against us? Say, scout, say.
charge (v.) 5 attack, assail, storm


BOYET

Under the cool shade of a sycamore

I thought to close mine eyes some half an hour,

When, lo, to interrupt my purposed rest,
purposed (adj.) 1 proposed, intended, contemplated

Toward that shade I might behold addressed
address (v.) 3 direct, apply, turn

The King and his companions! Warily

I stole into a neighbour thicket by,
by (adv.) 1 near by, close at hand
neighbour (adj.) 1 neighbouring, nearby, adjacent

And overheard what you shall overhear –
overhear (v.) hear told over, hear again

That, by and by, disguised they will be here.

Their herald is a pretty knavish page
knavish (adj.) rascally, mischievous, roguish

That well by heart hath conned his embassage.
con (v.) 1 learn by heart, commit to memory
embassage, ambassage (n.) message, errand, business, mission

Action and accent did they teach him there:

‘ Thus must thou speak ’ and ‘ thus thy body bear.’

And ever and anon they made a doubt
anon, ever and every now and then, at regular intervals
doubt (n.) 1 suspicion, apprehension

Presence majestical would put him out;
majestical (adj.) 1 majestic, regal, kingly
put out (v.) 1 disconcert, distract, make one forget one's lines

‘ For,’ quoth the King, ‘ an angel shalt thou see;
quoth (v.) said See Topics: Frequency count

Yet fear not thou, but speak audaciously.’
audaciously (adv.) boldly, fearlessly, confidently

The boy replied ‘ An angel is not evil;

I should have feared her had she been a devil.’

With that all laughed and clapped him on the shoulder,

Making the bold wag by their praises bolder.

One rubbed his elbow thus, and fleered, and swore
fleer (v.) jeer, grin scornfully, laugh mockingly

A better speech was never spoke before.

Another, with his finger and his thumb,

Cried, ‘ Via, we will do't, come what will come!’
via, fia (int.) 2 forward, onward

The third he capered and cried ‘ All goes well!’
caper (v.) 2 dance with joy, leap with delight

The fourth turned on the toe, and down he fell.
turn on the toe pirouette

With that they all did tumble on the ground,

With such a zealous laughter, so profound,

That in this spleen ridiculous appears,
spleen (n.) 4 amusement, delight, merriment

To check their folly, passion's solemn tears.
passion (n.) 1 powerful feeling, overpowering emotion [often opposed to ‘reason’]
solemn (adj.) 4 sorrowful, mournful, melancholic


PRINCESS

But what, but what? Come they to visit us?


BOYET

They do, they do, and are apparelled thus,

Like Muscovites or Russians, as I guess.

Their purpose is to parley, court, and dance,
parle, parley (v.) 2 talk, discuss, enter into conversation
purpose (n.) 1 intention, aim, plan See Topics: Frequency count

And every one his love-suit will advance

Unto his several mistress, which they'll know
love-feat (n.) act of courtship, exploit prompted by love
several (adj.) 2 various, sundry, respective, individual

By favours several which they did bestow.
favour (n.) 5 mark of favour, gift, token [often a love-token]


PRINCESS

And will they so? The gallants shall be tasked;
gallant (n.) 1 fine gentleman, man of fashion See Topics: Address forms
task (v.) 1 test, try out, challenge

For, ladies, we shall every one be masked,

And not a man of them shall have the grace,

Despite of suit, to see a lady's face.
suit (n.) 2 wooing, courtship

Hold, Rosaline, this favour thou shalt wear,

And then the King will court thee for his dear.

Hold, take thou this, my sweet, and give me thine;

So shall Berowne take me for Rosaline.

And change your favours too; so shall your loves
change (v.) 1 exchange, trade

Woo contrary, deceived by these removes.
remove (n.) 2 exchange, switch, substitution


ROSALINE

Come on, then, wear the favours most in sight.
sight, in visibly, conspicuously


KATHARINE

But in this changing what is your intent?


PRINCESS

The effect of my intent is to cross theirs.
cross (v.) 1 prevent, thwart, forestall
intent (n.) intention, purpose, aim See Topics: Frequency count

They do it but in mockery merriment,
mockery (adj.) mocking, derisive

And mock for mock is only my intent.
mock (n.) 1 act of mockery, mocking remark, derisive action, scornful irony

Their several counsels they unbosom shall
several (adj.) 1 separate, different, distinct See Topics: Frequency count
unbosom (v.) disclose, reveal, express from the heart

To loves mistook, and so be mocked withal

Upon the next occasion that we meet,

With visages displayed, to talk and greet.
visage (n.) 1 face, countenance See Topics: Frequency count


ROSALINE

But shall we dance if they desire to't?
desire (v.) 1 request, wish, ask [for]


PRINCESS

No, to the death we will not move a foot;

Nor to their penned speech render we no grace,
penned (adj.) specially composed, set down in writing

But while 'tis spoke each turn away her face.


BOYET

Why, that contempt will kill the speaker's heart,

And quite divorce his memory from his part.


PRINCESS

Therefore I do it, and I make no doubt

The rest will ne'er come in, if he be out
out (adv.) 2 at a loss, put out, nonplussed; unable to remember one's lines

There's no such sport as sport by sport o'erthrown,
sport (n.) 1 recreation, amusement, entertainment See Topics: Frequency count

To make theirs ours, and ours none but our own.

So shall we stay, mocking intended game,

And they, well mocked, depart away with shame.

A trumpet sounds


BOYET

The trumpet sounds. Be masked – the masquers come.

Enter blackamoors with music, Mote with a speech,

and the King and the rest of the lords disguised like

Russians and visored


MOTE

All hail, the richest beauties on the earth!
blackamoor (n.) black-skinned African, negro


BOYET

Beauties no richer than rich taffeta.


MOTE

A holy parcel of the fairest dames
parcel (n.) 3 small group, company, party

(The ladies turn their backs

to him)

That ever turned their – backs – to mortal views!


BEROWNE

‘ Their eyes ’, villain, ‘ their eyes ’!


MOTE

That ever turned their eyes to mortal views!

Out –


BOYET

True! ‘ Out ’ indeed.


MOTE

Out of your favours, heavenly spirits, vouchsafe

Not to behold –


BEROWNE

‘ Once to behold ’, rogue!


MOTE

Once to behold with your sun-beamed eyes –

With your sun-beamed eyes –


BOYET

They will not answer to that epithet.
epithet (n.) turn of phrase, expression

You were best call it ‘ daughter-beamed eyes.’


MOTE

They do not mark me, and that brings me out.
mark (v.) 1 note, pay attention [to], take notice [of] See Topics: Frequency count
out (adv.) 2 at a loss, put out, nonplussed; unable to remember one's lines


BEROWNE

Is this your perfectness? Be gone, you rogue!
perfectness (n.) 2 state of being word-perfect

Exit Mote


ROSALINE

What would these strangers? Know their minds, Boyet.

If they do speak our language, 'tis our will

That some plain man recount their purposes.
plain (adj.) 1 honest, open, free from deceit
purpose (n.) 1 intention, aim, plan See Topics: Frequency count

Know what they would.


BOYET

                         What would you with the Princess?


BEROWNE

Nothing but peace and gentle visitation.
gentle (adj.) 2 courteous, friendly, kind


ROSALINE

What would they, say they?


BOYET

Nothing but peace and gentle visitation.


ROSALINE

Why, that they have, and bid them so be gone.


BOYET

She says you have it and you may be gone.


KING

Say to her, we have measured many miles

To tread a measure with her on this grass.


BOYET

They say that they have measured many a mile
measure (v.) 1 pass through, travel over, traverse

To tread a measure with you on this grass.
measure (n.) 8 slow stately dance, graceful movement


ROSALINE

It is not so. Ask them how many inches

Is in one mile. If they have measured many,

The measure then of one is easily told.


BOYET

If to come hither you have measured miles,

And many miles, the Princess bids you tell

How many inches doth fill up one mile.
fill up (v.) 1 equal, measure, make the sum of


BEROWNE

Tell her we measure them by weary steps.


BOYET

She hears herself.


ROSALINE

                         How many weary steps,

Of many weary miles you have o'ergone,
overgo (v.) 2 travel through, pass over, traverse

Are numbered in the travel of one mile?


BEROWNE

We number nothing that we spend for you.

Our duty is so rich, so infinite,

That we may do it still without account.
account, accompt (n.) 1 reckoning, judgement [especially by God]
still (adv.) 1 constantly, always, continually See Topics: Frequency count

Vouchsafe to show the sunshine of your face,

That we like savages may worship it.


ROSALINE

My face is but a moon, and clouded too.


KING

Blessed are clouds, to do as such clouds do.

Vouchsafe, bright moon, and these thy stars, to shine –

Those clouds removed – upon our watery eyne.
eyne (n.) [archaism] eyes See Topics: Archaisms


ROSALINE

O vain petitioner, beg a greater matter!

Thou now requests but moonshine in the water.
moonshine in the water nothing, a thing of naught


KING

Then in our measure vouchsafe but one change.
change (n.) 5 [dancing] round, turn

Thou biddest me beg; this begging is not strange.


ROSALINE

Play music then! Nay, you must do it soon.

Not yet? No dance! Thus change I like the moon.


KING

Will you not dance? How come you thus estranged?


ROSALINE

You took the moon at full, but now she's changed.

Instruments strike up


KING

Yet still she is the moon, and I the man.

The music plays; vouchsafe some motion to it.
motion (n.) 7 act of moving, movement, stirring


ROSALINE

Our ears vouchsafe it.


KING

                         But your legs should do it.


ROSALINE

Since you are strangers and come here by chance,

We'll not be nice. Take hands. We will not dance.
nice (adj.) 1 fastidious, particular, fussy, overscrupulous


KING

Why take we hands then?


ROSALINE

                         Only to part friends.

Curtsy, sweet hearts. And so the measure ends.


KING

More measure of this measure! Be not nice.
measure (n.) 1 extent, size, amount, quantity, mass
measure (n.) 8 slow stately dance, graceful movement


ROSALINE

We can afford no more at such a price.


KING

Prize you yourselves. What buys your company?


ROSALINE

Your absence only.


KING

                         That can never be.


ROSALINE

Then cannot we be bought; and so adieu –

Twice to your visor, and half once to you!


KING

If you deny to dance, let's hold more chat.
deny (v.) 2 refuse, decline, scorn


ROSALINE

In private then.


KING

                         I am best pleased with that.

They converse apart


BEROWNE

White-handed mistress, one sweet word with thee.


PRINCESS

Honey, and milk, and sugar – there is three.


BEROWNE

Nay then, two treys, an if you grow so nice,
nice (adj.) 2 fine, precise, particular, subtle
trey (n.) [gambling] three

Metheglin, wort, and malmsey. Well run, dice!
malmsey (n.) variety of strong sweet red wine
metheglin (n.) [mi'theglin] strong spiced Welsh mead
wort (n.) 1 sweet unfermented beer

There's half a dozen sweets.


PRINCESS

                         Seventh sweet, adieu.

Since you can cog, I'll play no more with you.
cog (v.) 2 cheat, swindle, hoodwink, wheedle


BEROWNE

One word in secret.


PRINCESS

                         Let it not be sweet.


BEROWNE

Thou grievest my gall.
gall (n.) 1 bile [reputed for its bitterness]
gall (n.) 5 sore, pain, painful spot
meet (adj.) 1 fit, suitable, right, proper See Topics: Frequency count


PRINCESS

                         Gall? Bitter.


BEROWNE

                                                         Therefore meet.

They converse apart
change (v.) 1 exchange, trade


DUMAINE

Will you vouchsafe with me to change a word?


MARIA

Name it.


DUMAINE

                         Fair lady –


MARIA

                                                         Say you so? Fair lord!

Take that for your ‘ fair lady.’


DUMAINE

                         Please it you,

As much in private, and I'll bid adieu.

They converse apart


KATHARINE

What, was your visor made without a tongue?


LONGAVILLE

I know the reason, lady, why you ask.


KATHARINE

O for your reason! Quickly, sir; I long.


LONGAVILLE

You have a double tongue within your mask,
double (adj.) 2 forked, divided

And would afford my speechless visor half.


KATHARINE

‘ Veal ’, quoth the Dutchman. Is not ‘ veal ’ a calf?
quoth (v.) said See Topics: Frequency count
veal (n.) [unclear usage] Dutch pronunciation of ‘well’; or: version of Dutch ‘viel’ = plenty


LONGAVILLE

A calf, fair lady!


KATHARINE

                         No, a fair lord calf.


LONGAVILLE

Let's part the word.
part (v.) 2 divide, share, split up


KATHARINE

                         No, I'll not be your half.

Take all and wean it; it may prove an ox.
wean (v.) 2 bring up, train


LONGAVILLE

Look how you butt yourself in these sharp mocks.

Will you give horns, chaste lady? Do not so.


KATHARINE

Then die a calf before your horns do grow.


LONGAVILLE

One word in private with you ere I die.


KATHARINE

Bleat softly then. The butcher hears you cry.

They converse apart


BOYET

The tongues of mocking wenches are as keen

As is the razor's edge invisible,

Cutting a smaller hair than may be seen;

Above the sense of sense, so sensible
sense (n.) 4 perception, awareness, discernment, appreciation
sensible (adj.) 3 endowed with good sense, perceptive, responsible

Seemeth their conference. Their conceits have wings
conceit (n.) 1 imagination, fancy, wit
conference (n.) 1 conversation, talk, discourse

Fleeter than arrows, bullets, wind, thought, swifter things.
fleet (adj.) swift, nimble, active


ROSALINE

Not one word more, my maids; break off, break off!


BEROWNE

By heaven, all dry-beaten with pure scoff!
dry-beaten (adj.) bruised, soundly beaten


KING

Farewell, mad wenches. You have simple wits.
wits, also five wits faculties of the mind (common wit, imagination, fantasy, estimation, memory) or body (the five senses)

Exeunt the King, lords,

and blackamoors

Twenty adieus, my frozen Muscovits.

Are these the breed of wits so wondered at?
breed (n.) 3 sort, kind, type
wit (n.) 6 lively person, sharp-minded individual


BOYET

Tapers they are, with your sweet breaths puffed out.
taper (n.) candle


ROSALINE

Well-liking wits they have; gross, gross; fat, fat.
gross (adj.) 2 large, big, huge
well-liking (adj.) thriving, healthy, in good condition
wits, also five wits faculties of the mind (common wit, imagination, fantasy, estimation, memory) or body (the five senses)


PRINCESS

O poverty in wit, kingly-poor flout!
flout (n.) insult, jibe, taunt
wit (n.) 1 intelligence, wisdom, good sense, mental ability See Topics: Frequency count

Will they not, think you, hang themselves tonight?

Or ever but in visors show their faces?

This pert Berowne was out of countenance quite.
countenance, out of 1 disconcerted, abashed


ROSALINE

They were all in lamentable cases.
case (n.) 8 mask, disguise, covering

The King was weeping-ripe for a good word.
good (adj.) 3 kind, friendly, sympathetic
weeping-ripe (adj.) ready to weep, on the point of tears


PRINCESS

Berowne did swear himself out of all suit.
suit (n.) 2 wooing, courtship


MARIA

Dumaine was at my service, and his sword.

Non point ’, quoth I; my servant straight was mute.
quoth (v.) said See Topics: Frequency count
servant (n.) 1 devotee, one who gives dedicated service, lover
straight (adv.) straightaway, immediately, at once See Topics: Frequency count


KATHARINE

Lord Longaville said I came o'er his heart;

And trow you what he called me?
qualm (n.) 1 sudden sickness, feeling of nausea, fainting attack
trow (v.) 1 know, guess, imagine


PRINCESS

                         Qualm, perhaps.


KATHARINE

Yes, in good faith.


PRINCESS

                         Go, sickness as thou art!


ROSALINE

Well, better wits have worn plain statute-caps.
statute-cap (n.) woollen cap ordered (by an Act of 1571) to be worn on Sundays and holy days by all below a certain social rank See Topics: Clothing
wit (n.) 6 lively person, sharp-minded individual

But will you hear? The King is my love sworn.


PRINCESS

And quick Berowne hath plighted faith to me.


KATHARINE

And Longaville was for my service born.


MARIA

Dumaine is mine as sure as bark on tree.
sure (adj.) 5 betrothed, joined, bound


BOYET

Madam, and pretty mistresses, give ear:

Immediately they will again be here

In their own shapes, for it can never be
shape (n.) 1 appearance, aspect, visible form

They will digest this harsh indignity.
digest, disgest (v.) 5 endure, brook, put up with


PRINCESS

Will they return?


BOYET

                         They will, they will, God knows;

And leap for joy though they are lame with blows.

Therefore change favours, and, when they repair,
favour (n.) 5 mark of favour, gift, token [often a love-token]
repair (v.) 1 come, go, make one's way

Blow like sweet roses in this summer air.
blow (v.) 1 blossom, bloom, flower


PRINCESS

How ‘ blow ’? How ‘ blow ’? Speak to be understood.


BOYET

Fair ladies masked are roses in their bud;

Dismasked, their damask sweet commixture shown,
commixture (n.) 2 complexion, mingling of colour
damask (adj./n.) light-red, pink [colour of the damask rose]
dismasked (adj.) unmasked, with mask removed

Are angels vailing clouds, or roses blown.
blown (adj.) 1 in full flower, in its bloom
vail (v.) 2 let fall, yield, surrender


PRINCESS

Avaunt, perplexity! What shall we do
avaunt (int.) begone, go away, be off See Topics: Frequency count
perplexity (n.) riddler, source of confusion

If they return in their own shapes to woo?


ROSALINE

Good madam, if by me you'll be advised,

Let's mock them still, as well known as disguised.
still (adv.) 2 ever, now [as before]

Let us complain to them what fools were here,

Disguised like Muscovites in shapeless gear;
gear (n.) 4 attire, dress, clothes
shapeless (adj.) 1 unshapely, ugly, unsightly

And wonder what they were, and to what end

Their shallow shows and prologue vilely penned,
shallow (adj.) naive, gullible, lacking in depth of character
show (n.) 2 spectacle, display, ceremony

And their rough carriage so ridiculous,
carriage (n.) 1 bearing, demeanour, manner of behaviour
rough (adj.) 4 inadequate, dull, lacking grace

Should be presented at our tent to us.


BOYET

Ladies, withdraw. The gallants are at hand.
gallant (n.) 1 fine gentleman, man of fashion See Topics: Address forms


PRINCESS

Whip to our tents, as roes runs o'er the land.
land (n.) 2 lawn, soil, ground
whip (v.) 1 dash, hurry, hasten

Exeunt Princess and ladies

Enter the King, Berowne, Longaville, and Dumaine,

having shed their disguises


KING

Fair sir, God save you. Where's the Princess?


BOYET

Gone to her tent. Please it your majesty

Command me any service to her thither?


KING

That she vouchsafe me audience for one word.
audience (n.) 1 hearing, attention, reception See Topics: Attention signals


BOYET

I will; and so will she, I know, my lord.

Exit


BEROWNE

This fellow pecks up wit, as pigeons peas,
wit (n.) 2 mental sharpness, acumen, quickness, ingenuity See Topics: Frequency count

And utters it again when God doth please.
utter (v.) 2 offer for sale, dispense, make available

He is wit's pedlar, and retails his wares

At wakes and wassails, meetings, markets, fairs;
wake (n.) 1 festival, revel, fete
wassail (n.) drinking-party, carousal, revels

And we that sell by gross, the Lord doth know,
gross, by / by the in large quantities, wholesale

Have not the grace to grace it with such show.
grace (n.) 5 favour, good will
grace (v.) 1 favour, add merit to, do honour to

This gallant pins the wenches on his sleeve.
gallant (n.) 1 fine gentleman, man of fashion See Topics: Address forms

Had he been Adam, he had tempted Eve.

'A can carve too, and lisp. Why, this is he
carve (v.) 1 be a generous hostess; or: speak in a charmingly affected way
lisp (v.) 1 talk in an affected way, speak with affectation

That kissed his hand away in courtesy.

This is the ape of form, Monsieur the Nice,
ape (n.) 1 mimic, imitator, impersonator
form (n.) 5 way of behaving, behaviour, code of conduct

That, when he plays at tables, chides the dice
chide (v.), past form chid 1 scold, rebuke, reprove See Topics: Frequency count
table (n.) 6 (plural) backgammon

In honourable terms. Nay, he can sing

A mean most meanly; and in ushering
mean (n.) 11 middle-part singer, tenor, alto
meanly (adv.) 2 tolerably, moderately well, well enough
ushering (n.) organization of ceremony

Mend him who can. The ladies call him sweet.
mend (v.) 1 amend, improve, make better, put right

The stairs, as he treads on them, kiss his feet.

This is the flower that smiles on everyone,

To show his teeth as white as whale's bone;

And consciences that will not die in debt

Pay him the due of ‘ honey-tongued Boyet.’


KING

A blister on his sweet tongue, with my heart,

That put Armado's page out of his part!

Enter the Princess, Rosaline, Maria, and Katharine,

having unmasked and exchanged favours, with

Boyet


BEROWNE

See where it comes! Behaviour, what wert thou
behaviour (n.) 2 courtly behaviour, fine manners, etiquette

Till this man showed thee, and what art thou now?


KING

All hail, sweet madam, and fair time of day.


PRINCESS

‘ Fair ’ in ‘ all hail ’ is foul, as I conceive.


KING

Construe my speeches better, if you may.
construe (v.) 1 interpret, take, understand


PRINCESS

Then wish me better; I will give you leave.


KING

We came to visit you, and purpose now
purpose (v.) 1 intend, plan

To lead you to our court. Vouchsafe it then.


PRINCESS

This field shall hold me, and so hold your vow.
field (n.) 4 wasteland, wilderness
hold (v.) 1 keep, maintain, observe

Nor God nor I delights in perjured men.


KING

Rebuke me not for that which you provoke.

The virtue of your eye must break my oath.
virtue (n.) 4 power, capability, efficacy, property


PRINCESS

You nickname virtue – ‘ vice ’ you should have spoke;
nickname (v.) invent names for, misname

For virtue's office never breaks men's troth.
office (n.) 2 role, position, place, function
troth (n.) 1 truth, good faith See Topics: Swearing

Now, by my maiden honour, yet as pure

As the unsullied lily, I protest,

A world of torments though I should endure,

I would not yield to be your house's guest,

So much I hate a breaking cause to be

Of heavenly oaths, vowed with integrity.


KING

O, you have lived in desolation here,

Unseen, unvisited, much to our shame.


PRINCESS

Not so, my lord. It is not so, I swear.

We have had pastimes here and pleasant game:

A mess of Russians left us but of late.
late, of recently, a little while ago
mess (n.) 1 company, group, gang of four


KING

How, madam? Russians?


PRINCESS

                         Ay, in truth, my lord;

Trim gallants, full of courtship and of state.
courtship (n.) court life, courtliness; also: wooing, courting
gallant (n.) 1 fine gentleman, man of fashion See Topics: Address forms
state (n.) 4 splendour, magnificence, stateliness, dignity
trim (adj.) 1 fine, excellent, smart


ROSALINE

Madam, speak true! It is not so, my lord.
true (adv.) 3 truthfully, honestly

My lady, to the manner of the days,
manner (n.) 5 fashion, usage, custom

In courtesy gives undeserving praise.

We four indeed confronted were with four

In Russian habit. Here they stayed an hour

And talked apace; and in that hour, my lord,

They did not bless us with one happy word.
happy (adj.) 4 well-chosen, felicitous, fitting

I dare not call them fools, but this I think,

When they are thirsty, fools would fain have drink.
fain (adv.) gladly, willingly See Topics: Frequency count


BEROWNE

This jest is dry to me. My gentle sweet,
dry (adj.) 1 barren, arid, yielding no result
gentle (adj.) 6 soft, tender, kind

Your wit makes wise things foolish. When we greet,
wit (n.) 2 mental sharpness, acumen, quickness, ingenuity See Topics: Frequency count

With eyes' best seeing, heaven's fiery eye,

By light we lose light. Your capacity

Is of that nature that to your huge store

Wise things seem foolish and rich things but poor.


ROSALINE

This proves you wise and rich, for in my eye –


BEROWNE

I am a fool, and full of poverty.


ROSALINE

But that you take what doth to you belong,

It were a fault to snatch words from my tongue.


BEROWNE

O, I am yours, and all that I possess.


ROSALINE

All the fool mine?


BEROWNE

                         I cannot give you less.


ROSALINE

Which of the visors was it that you wore?


BEROWNE

Where, when, what visor? Why demand you this?


ROSALINE

There, then, that visor: that superfluous case
case (n.) 8 mask, disguise, covering

That hid the worse and showed the better face.


KING

We are descried. They'll mock us now downright.
descry (v.) 2 find out, detect, discover
downright (adv.) 2 outright, totally, utterly


DUMAINE

Let us confess, and turn it to a jest.


PRINCESS

Amazed, my lord? Why looks your highness sad?
amazed (adj.) dumbfounded, stunned, thunderstruck, overwhelmed
sad (adj.) 3 downcast, distressed, mournful, gloomy


ROSALINE

Help! Hold his brows! He'll swoon. Why look you pale?
brow (n.) 4 forehead [often plural, referring to the two prominences of the forehead]

Sea-sick, I think, coming from Muscovy!


BEROWNE

Thus pour the stars down plagues for perjury.

Can any face of brass hold longer out?
brass (n.) brazenness, effrontery, impudence
face (n.) 1 appearance, outward show, look

Here stand I, lady; dart thy skill at me.
dart (v.) hurl like an arrow

Bruise me with scorn, confound me with a flout,
confound (v.) 1 destroy, overthrow, ruin
flout (n.) insult, jibe, taunt

Thrust thy sharp wit quite through my ignorance,
wit (n.) 2 mental sharpness, acumen, quickness, ingenuity See Topics: Frequency count

Cut me to pieces with thy keen conceit,
conceit (n.) 3 understanding, intelligence, apprehension

And I will wish thee never more to dance,
wish (v.) 3 entreat, invite

Nor never more in Russian habit wait.
habit (n.) 1 dress, clothing, costume See Topics: Frequency count
wait (v.) be in attendance, do service

O, never will I trust to speeches penned,

Nor to the motion of a schoolboy's tongue,

Nor never come in visor to my friend,
friend (n.) 1 lover, sweetheart, suitor

Nor woo in rhyme, like a blind harper's song.
harper (n.) harpist, minstrel

Taffeta phrases, silken terms precise,

Three-piled hyperboles, spruce affection,
affection (n.) 8 affectation, posing, artificiality
spruce (adj.) 2 over-elegant, smart
three-piled (adj.) triple-thickness, three-threaded [i.e. very expensive or ornate]

Figures pedantical – these summer flies
figure (n.) 2 figure of speech, device, piece of rhetoric
pedantical (adj.) pedantic, exaggerated, artificial

Have blown me full of maggot ostentation.
blow (v.) 2 deposit eggs [in], pollute, contaminate
ostentation (n.) 3 pretentiousness, false show, showing off

I do forswear them; and I here protest
forswear (v), past forms forsworn, forswore 2 abandon, renounce, reject, give up See Topics: Frequency count

By this white glove – how white the hand, God knows! –

Henceforth my wooing mind shall be expressed

In russet yeas and honest kersey noes.
kersey (adj.) plain, simple, ordinary
russet (adj.) 1 rustic, homely, simple

And, to begin: wench – so God help me, law! –

My love to thee is sound, sans crack or flaw.
crack (n.) 1 flaw, defect, deficiency
sans (prep.) without


ROSALINE

Sanssans ’, I pray you.
trick (n.) 1 habit, characteristic, typical behaviour


BEROWNE

                         Yet I have a trick

Of the old rage. Bear with me, I am sick;
rage (n.) 5 folly, rashness, mad jest

I'll leave it by degrees. Soft, let us see:

Write ‘ Lord have mercy on us ’ on those three.

They are infected; in their hearts it lies;

They have the plague, and caught it of your eyes.

These lords are visited; you are not free,
visit (v.) 3 afflict with sickness, strike down with disease

For the Lord's tokens on you do I see.
token (n.) 5 keepsake, present, memento


PRINCESS

No, they are free that gave these tokens to us.
free (adj.) 1 liberal, lavish, generous


BEROWNE

Our states are forfeit. Seek not to undo us.
state (n.) 2 status, rank, position
undo (v.) 1 ruin, destroy, wipe out


ROSALINE

It is not so; for how can this be true,

That you stand forfeit, being those that sue?
sue (v.) 1 beg, plead, beseech


BEROWNE

Peace! for I will not have to do with you.


ROSALINE

Nor shall not if I do as I intend.


BEROWNE

Speak for yourselves. My wit is at an end.
wit (n.) 2 mental sharpness, acumen, quickness, ingenuity See Topics: Frequency count


KING

Teach us, sweet madam, for our rude transgression

Some fair excuse.


PRINCESS

                         The fairest is confession.

Were not you here but even now disguised?


KING

Madam, I was.
well-advised (adj.) 2 in one's right mind, sane, rational


PRINCESS

                         And were you well advised?


KING

I was, fair madam.


PRINCESS

                         When you then were here,

What did you whisper in your lady's ear?


KING

That more than all the world I did respect her.


PRINCESS

When she shall challenge this, you will reject her.
challenge (v.) 1 demand as a right, claim, call for, insist on


KING

Upon mine honour, no.
forbear (v.) 1 stop, cease, desist See Topics: Frequency count


PRINCESS

                         Peace, peace, forbear!

Your oath once broke, you force not to forswear.
force (v.) 1 hesitate, scruple, care for
forswear (v), past forms forsworn, forswore 1 swear falsely, perjure [oneself], break one's word See Topics: Frequency count


KING

Despise me when I break this oath of mine.


PRINCESS

I will; and therefore keep it. Rosaline,

What did the Russian whisper in your ear?


ROSALINE

Madam, he swore that he did hold me dear

As precious eyesight, and did value me

Above this world; adding thereto, moreover,

That he would wed me or else die my lover.


PRINCESS

God give thee joy of him. The noble lord

Most honourably doth uphold his word.


KING

What mean you, madam? By my life, my troth,

I never swore this lady such an oath.


ROSALINE

By heaven you did! And, to confirm it plain,

You gave me this; but take it, sir, again.


KING

My faith and this the Princess I did give.

I knew her by this jewel on her sleeve.


PRINCESS

Pardon me, sir, this jewel did she wear,

And Lord Berowne, I thank him, is my dear.

What! Will you have me, or your pearl again?


BEROWNE

Neither of either; I remit both twain.
remit (v.) give up, resign, surrender

I see the trick on't. Here was a consent,
consent (n.) 1 agreement, accord, unanimity, compact

Knowing aforehand of our merriment,

To dash it like a Christmas comedy.
dash (v.) 3 frustrate, spoil, ruin

Some carry-tale, some please-man, some slight zany,
carry-tale (n.) tell-tale, tale-bearer
please-man (n.) yes-man, sycophant, toady
slight (adj.) 1 worthless, insignificant, good-for-nothing
zany (n.) stooge, clown's assistant, mimic

Some mumble-news, some trencher-knight, some Dick,
Dick (n.) low fellow, jack-in-office
mumble-news (n.) tale-bearer, tattler, gossip
trencher-knight (n.) hero of the dinner-table, valiant eater

That smiles his cheek in years, and knows the trick
smile (v.) 1 make something happen by smiling
trick (n.) 2 way, knack, skill

To make my lady laugh when she's disposed,
disposed (adj.) 4 inclined to be merry, feeling playful

Told our intents before; which once disclosed,
before (adv.) 1 ahead, in advance
intent (n.) intention, purpose, aim See Topics: Frequency count

The ladies did change favours, and then we,
favour (n.) 5 mark of favour, gift, token [often a love-token]

Following the signs, wooed but the sign of she.
sign (n.) 1 outward appearance, external demeanour

Now, to our perjury to add more terror,

We are again forsworn, in will and error.
forswear (v), past forms forsworn, forswore 1 swear falsely, perjure [oneself], break one's word See Topics: Frequency count

Much upon this 'tis. (To Boyet) And might not you

Forestall our sport, to make us thus untrue?
forestall (v.) 1 prevent, stop, intercept, waylay
sport (n.) 1 recreation, amusement, entertainment See Topics: Frequency count

Do not you know my lady's foot by the square,
square, by the accurately, exactly, with great precision

And laugh upon the apple of her eye?
apple (n.) pupil, centre

And stand between her back, sir, and the fire,

Holding a trencher, jesting merrily?
trencher (n.) plate, platter, serving dish

You put our page out – go, you are allowed;
allowed (adj.) 2 licensed, authorized, permitted
put out (v.) 1 disconcert, distract, make one forget one's lines

Die when you will, a smock shall be your shroud.

You leer upon me, do you? There's an eye
leer (v.) look sideways, cast a side glance, smile disarmingly

Wounds like a leaden sword.


BOYET

                         Full merrily

Hath this brave manage, this career, been run.
brave (adj.) 1 fine, excellent, splendid, impressive See Topics: Frequency count
career (n.) 1 [of a horse in a combat] charge, gallop, course
manage (n.) 4 gallop at full speed


BEROWNE

Lo, he is tilting straight. Peace! I have done.
tilt (v.) joust, fight [with lances], thrust

Enter Costard
wit (n.) 1 intelligence, wisdom, good sense, mental ability See Topics: Frequency count

Welcome, pure wit! Thou partest a fair fray.


COSTARD

O Lord, sir, they would know

Whether the three Worthies shall come in or no.


BEROWNE

What, are there but three?
vara (adv.) dialect form of ‘very’


COSTARD

                         No, sir; but it is vara fine,

For every one pursents three.
pursent (v.) dialect form of ‘present’


BEROWNE

                         And three times thrice is nine.


COSTARD

Not so, sir – under correction, sir – I hope it is not so.

You cannot beg us, sir, I can assure you, sir; we know what we know.
beg (v.) 2 plead to put in care; treat as a fool

I hope, sir, three times thrice, sir –


BEROWNE

                         Is not nine?


COSTARD

Under correction, sir, we know whereuntil it

doth amount.


BEROWNE

By Jove, I always took three threes for nine.


COSTARD

O Lord, sir, it were pity you should get your
pity (n.) bad thing, sad fate, calamity [for]

living by reck'ning, sir.
reckoning (n.) 1 counting up, enumeration, calculation


BEROWNE

How much is it?


COSTARD

O Lord, sir, the parties themselves, the actors,

sir, will show whereuntil it doth amount. For mine

own part, I am, as they say, but to parfect one man in
parfect (v.) malapropism probably for ‘perform’ or ‘present’

one poor man – Pompion the Great, sir.
Pompion (n.) [= pumpkin] malapropism for ‘Pompey’


BEROWNE

Art thou one of the Worthies?


COSTARD

It pleased them to think me worthy of Pompey

the Great. For mine own part, I know not the degree
degree (n.) 1 rank, station, standing

of the Worthy, but I am to stand for him.
stand (v.) 10 stand in, impersonate, represent


BEROWNE

Go bid them prepare.


COSTARD

We will turn it finely off, sir; we will take some
turn off (v.) 2 perform with skill, accomplish

care.

Exit


KING

Berowne, they will shame us. Let them not approach.


BEROWNE

We are shame-proof, my lord; and 'tis some policy
policy (n.) 2 stratagem, cunning, intrigue, craft

To have one show worse than the King's and his company.


KING

I say they shall not come.


PRINCESS

Nay, my good lord, let me o'errule you now.

That sport best pleases that doth least know how –
sport (n.) 1 recreation, amusement, entertainment See Topics: Frequency count

Where zeal strives to content, and the contents
content (n.) 4 substance, matter, meaning
content (v.) 1 please, gratify, delight, satisfy

Dies in the zeal of that which it presents;

Their form confounded makes most form in mirth,
confound (v.) 1 destroy, overthrow, ruin
form (n.) 6 formal procedure, due process, formality
form (n.) 3 pattern, shaping, outcome, order

When great things labouring perish in their birth.


BEROWNE

A right description of our sport, my lord.

Enter Armado


ARMADO

Anointed, I implore so much expense of thy

royal sweet breath as will utter a brace of words.

Armado and the King

converse apart


PRINCESS

Doth this man serve God?


BEROWNE

Why ask you?


PRINCESS

'A speaks not like a man of God his making.


ARMADO

That is all one, my fair sweet honey monarch;

for, I protest, the schoolmaster is exceeding fantastical;
fantastical (adj.) 1 fanciful, imaginative, full of wild ideas

too, too vain; too, too vain; but we will put it, as they

say, to fortuna de la guerra.

He gives the King a paper
couplement (n.) couple, pair

I wish you the peace of mind, most royal couplement!

Exit


KING

Here is like to be a good presence of Worthies. (Consulting

the paper) He presents Hector of Troy; the swain,

Pompey the Great; the parish curate, Alexander;

Armado's page, Hercules; the pedant, Judas Maccabaeus.
pedant (n.) schoolmaster, teacher

(reading)

And if these four Worthies in their first show thrive,

These four will change habits and present the other five.
habit (n.) 1 dress, clothing, costume See Topics: Frequency count


BEROWNE

There is five in the first show.


KING

You are deceived. 'Tis not so.


BEROWNE

The pedant, the braggart, the hedge-priest, the
hedge-priest (n.) [contemptuous] roadside cleric, uneducated priest

fool, and the boy.

Abate throw at novum, and the whole world again
abate (v.) 5 set aside, except, bar
novum (n.) game of dice in which throws of nine and five were significant

Cannot pick out five such, take each one in his vein.


KING

The ship is under sail, and here she comes amain.
amain (adv.) 1 in all haste, at full speed

Enter Costard as Pompey


COSTARD as Pompey

I Pompey am –


BOYET

                         You lie! You are not he.


COSTARD as Pompey

I Pompey am –
libbard (n.) leopard


BOYET

                         With leopard's head on knee.


BEROWNE

Well said, old mocker. I must needs be friends with thee.


COSTARD as Pompey

I Pompey am, Pompey surnamed the Big –


DUMAINE

The ‘ Great.’


COSTARD as Pompey

It is ‘ Great ’, sir – Pompey surnamed the Great,

That oft in field, with targe and shield, did make my foe to sweat;
field (n.) 1 field of battle, battleground, field of combat See Topics: Frequency count
oft (adv.) often See Topics: Frequency count
targe (n.) shield See Topics: Weapons

And travelling along this coast, I here am come by chance,

And lay my arms before the legs of this sweet lass of France.

If your ladyship would say ‘ Thanks, Pompey ’, I had

done.


PRINCESS

Great thanks, great Pompey.


COSTARD

'Tis not so much worth, but I hope I was

perfect. I made a little fault in ‘ Great.’
perfect (adj.) 11 word-perfect, perfectly accurate


BEROWNE

My hat to a halfpenny, Pompey proves the

best Worthy.

Enter Nathaniel as Alexander


NATHANIEL as Alexander

When in the world I lived, I was the world's commander;

By east, west, north, and south, I spread my conquering might;

My scutcheon plain declares that I am Alisander.
scutcheon (n.) escutcheon, painted shield


BOYET

Your nose says no, you are not; for it stands too right.
right (adj.) 5 straight, not bent to one side


BEROWNE

Your nose smells ‘ no ’ in this, most tender-smelling knight.
tender-smelling (adj.) with a sensitive sense of smell


PRINCESS

The conqueror is dismayed. Proceed, good Alexander.


NATHANIEL as Alexander

When in the world I lived, I was the world's commander –


BOYET

Most true, 'tis right – you were so, Alisander.


BEROWNE

Pompey the Great –


COSTARD

Your servant, and Costard.


BEROWNE

Take away the conqueror; take away

Alisander.


COSTARD

(to Nathaniel)

O, sir, you have overthrown

Alisander the conqueror. You will be scraped out of

the painted cloth for this. Your lion, that holds his

pole-axe sitting on a close-stool, will be given to Ajax.
close-stool (n.) chamber pot enclosed in a stool, privy

He will be the ninth Worthy. A conqueror, and afeard
afeard (adj.) afraid, frightened, scared See Topics: Frequency count

to speak? Run away for shame, Alisander.

Nathaniel retires

There, an't shall please you, a foolish mild man; an

honest man, look you, and soon dashed. He is a marvellous
dash (v.) 1 cast down, daunt, dishearten

good neighbour, faith, and a very good bowler;

but for Alisander, alas, you see how 'tis – a little

o'erparted. But there are Worthies a-coming will speak
overparted (adj.) unequal to the part, having too difficult a part to play

their mind in some other sort.
sort (n.) 3 way, manner


PRINCESS

Stand aside, good Pompey.

Enter Holofernes as Judas and Mote as Hercules
imp (n.) child, scion, son


HOLOFERNES as presenter

Great Hercules is presented by this imp,

Whose club killed Cerberus, that three-headed canus,

And when he was a babe, a child, a shrimp,

Thus did he strangle serpents in his manus.

Quoniam he seemeth in minority,

Ergo I come with this apology.
ergo (adv.) therefore See Topics: Latin

Keep some state in thy exit, and retire.
retire (v.) 1 withdraw, take oneself away
state (n.) 4 splendour, magnificence, stateliness, dignity

Mote retires

Holfernes speaks as Judas

Judas I am –


DUMAINE

A Judas!


HOLOFERNES

Not Iscariot, sir.

(as Judas)
yclept (v.) [archaism] called

Judas I am, yclept Maccabaeus.


DUMAINE

Judas Maccabaeus clipped is plain Judas.
clip (v.) 3 cut short, abbreviate, curtail


BEROWNE

A kissing traitor. How art thou proved

Judas?


HOLOFERNES as Judas

Judas I am, –


DUMAINE

The more shame for you, Judas.


HOLOFERNES

What mean you, sir?


BOYET

To make Judas hang himself.


HOLOFERNES

Begin, sir; you are my elder.
elder (n.) 1 senior, superior


BEROWNE

Well followed: Judas was hanged on an elder.


HOLOFERNES

I will not be put out of countenance.
countenance, out of 2 into a disconcerted state


BEROWNE

Because thou hast no face.


HOLOFERNES

What is this?


BOYET

A cittern-head.
cittern-head (n.) [term of abuse] cittern [type of guitar] with a grotesquely carved head


DUMAINE

The head of a bodkin.
bodkin (n.) 3 hair-pin, pin-shaped ornament


BEROWNE

A death's face in a ring.
face (n.) 2 representation, image; skull


LONGAVILLE

The face of an old Roman coin, scarce

seen.


BOYET

The pommel of Caesar's falchion.
falchion (n.) curved broadsword See Topics: Weapons
pommel (n.) ornamental knob


DUMAINE

The carved bone face on a flask.
flask (n.) powder-flask, case for carrying gunpowder


BEROWNE

Saint George's half-cheek in a brooch.
brooch (n.) jewel, ornament
half-cheek (n.) profile, side-view


DUMAINE

Ay, in a brooch of lead.


BEROWNE

Ay, and worn in the cap of a toothdrawer. And
toothdrawer (n.) tooth-extractor, dentist

now forward, for we have put thee in countenance.
countenance, put in make one feel comfortable, encourage


HOLOFERNES

You have put me out of countenance.
countenance, out of 2 into a disconcerted state


BEROWNE

False! We have given thee faces.
false (adj.) 4 wrong, mistaken


HOLOFERNES

But you have outfaced them all.
outface (v.) 2 put down, overcome, put to shame


BEROWNE

An thou wert a lion, we would do so.


BOYET

Therefore, as he is an ass, let him go.

And so adieu, sweet Jude. Nay, why dost thou stay?


DUMAINE

For the latter end of his name.


BEROWNE

For the ass to the Jude. Give it him. Jude-as, away!


HOLOFERNES

This is not generous, not gentle, not humble.
gentle (adj.) 2 courteous, friendly, kind


BOYET

A light for Monsieur Judas! It grows dark; he may stumble.

Holofernes retires


PRINCESS

Alas, poor Maccabaeus, how hath he been

baited!
bait (v.) 1 harass, persecute, torment

Enter Armado as Hector


BEROWNE

Hide thy head, Achilles! Here comes Hector in

arms.


DUMAINE

Though my mocks come home by me, I will
come home rebound, come back [on]
mock (n.) 1 act of mockery, mocking remark, derisive action, scornful irony

now be merry.


KING

Hector was but a Trojan in respect of this.
Troyan, Trojan (n.) 2 fellow, knave


BOYET

But is this Hector?


KING

I think Hector was not so clean-timbered.
clean-timbered (adj.) well-built, clean-limbed


LONGAVILLE

His leg is too big for Hector's.


DUMAINE

More calf, certain.


BOYET

No; he is best indued in the small.
indue, endue (v.) 1 endow, furnish, provide
small (n.) lower leg


BEROWNE

This cannot be Hector.


DUMAINE

He's a god or a painter; for he makes faces.


ARMADO as Hector

The armipotent Mars, of lances the almighty,
armipotent (adj.) mighty in arms, powerful in arms

Gave Hector a gift –


DUMAINE

A gilt nutmeg.
gilt (adj.) 1 coated, glazed


BEROWNE

A lemon.


LONGAVILLE

Stuck with cloves.


DUMAINE

No, cloven.


ARMADO

Peace!

(as Hector)

The armipotent Mars, of lances the almighty,

Gave Hector a gift, the heir of Ilion;

A man so breathed that certain he would fight, yea,
breathed (adj.) strong-winded, well-exercised

From morn till night, out of his pavilion.
morn (n.) morning, dawn See Topics: Frequency count
pavilion (n.) ceremonial tent

I am that flower –


DUMAINE

                         That mint!


LONGAVILLE

                                                         That columbine!


ARMADO

Sweet Lord Longaville, rein thy tongue.


LONGAVILLE

I must rather give it the rein, for it runs

against Hector.


DUMAINE

Ay, and Hector's a greyhound.


ARMADO

The sweet war-man is dead and rotten. Sweet

chucks, beat not the bones of the buried. When he
chuck (n.) chicken, chick [usually as a term of endearment] See Topics: Address forms

breathed, he was a man. But I will forward with my

device. Sweet royalty, bestow on me the sense of
device (n.) 10 show, performance, production

hearing.

Berowne steps forth and whispers to Costard
brave (adj.) 2 noble, worthy, excellent


PRINCESS

Speak, brave Hector; we are much delighted.


ARMADO

I do adore thy sweet grace's slipper.


BOYET

Loves her by the foot.


DUMAINE

He may not by the yard.
yard (n.) 1 yard measure


ARMADO as Hector

This Hector far surmounted Hannibal;
surmount (v.) excel, surpass, outshine

The party is gone –
party (n.) 5 person, fellow


COSTARD

Fellow Hector, she is gone! She is two months
gone (adj.) lost, ruined, brought down

on her way.
way, on one's pregnant, with child


ARMADO

What meanest thou?


COSTARD

Faith, unless you play the honest Trojan, the
honest (adj.) 2 honourable, respectable, upright
Troyan, Trojan (n.) 1 merry fellow, good companion

poor wench is cast away. She's quick; the child brags
quick (adj.) 10 pregnant, with child

in her belly already. 'Tis yours.


ARMADO

Dost thou infamonize me among potentates?
infamonize (v.) brand with infamy, defame

Thou shalt die!


COSTARD

Then shall Hector be whipped for Jaquenetta

that is quick by him, and hanged for Pompey that is
quick (adj.) 10 pregnant, with child

dead by him.


DUMAINE

Most rare Pompey!
rare (adj.) 1 marvellous, splendid, excellent


BOYET

Renowned Pompey!


BEROWNE

Greater than ‘ Great ’! Great, great, great

Pompey! Pompey the Huge!


DUMAINE

Hector trembles.


BEROWNE

Pompey is moved. More Ates, more Ates! Stir
Ates (n.) discord, strife, destruction See Topics: Gods and goddesses

them on, stir them on!


DUMAINE

Hector will challenge him.


BEROWNE

Ay, if 'a have no more man's blood in his belly

than will sup a flea.
sup (v.) 2 provide supper for


ARMADO

By the north pole, I do challenge thee.


COSTARD

I will not fight with a pole like a northern man.

I'll slash; I'll do it by the sword. I bepray you, let me

borrow my arms again.


DUMAINE

Room for the incensed Worthies.
incensed (adj.) inflamed, angered, enraged


COSTARD

I'll do it in my shirt.


DUMAINE

Most resolute Pompey!


MOTE

Master, let me take you a buttonhole lower. Do you

not see, Pompey is uncasing for the combat. What
uncase (v.) take off outer garments, undress

mean you? You will lose your reputation.


ARMADO

Gentlemen and soldiers, pardon me. I will not

combat in my shirt.


DUMAINE

You may not deny it. Pompey hath made the

challenge.


ARMADO

Sweet bloods, I both may and will.
blood (n.) 3 man of fire, hot-blooded fellow, spirited youth


BEROWNE

What reason have you for't?


ARMADO

The naked truth of it is, I have no shirt. I go

woolward for penance.
woolward (adj.) wearing wool next to the skin


BOYET

True, and it was enjoined him in Rome for want of

linen. Since when, I'll be sworn, he wore none but a

dishclout of Jaquenetta's, and that 'a wears next his
dishclout (n.) dishcloth, rag

heart for a favour.

Enter a messenger, Monsieur Marcade


MARCADE

God save you, madam.


PRINCESS

                         Welcome, Marcade,

But that thou interruptest our merriment.


MARCADE

I am sorry, madam, for the news I bring

Is heavy in my tongue. The King your father –
heavy (adj.) 1 sorrowful, sad, gloomy See Topics: Frequency count


PRINCESS

Dead, for my life!


MARCADE

                         Even so; my tale is told.


BEROWNE

Worthies, away! The scene begins to cloud.


ARMADO

For mine own part, I breathe free breath. I have

seen the day of wrong through the little hole of discretion,

and I will right myself like a soldier.

Exeunt Worthies


KING

How fares your majesty?
fare (v.) 1 get on, manage, do, cope See Topics: Frequency count


PRINCESS

Boyet, prepare. I will away tonight.


KING

Madam, not so. I do beseech you, stay.


PRINCESS

Prepare, I say. I thank you, gracious lords,

For all your fair endeavors, and entreat,

Out of a new-sad soul, that you vouchsafe

In your rich wisdom to excuse or hide
hide (v.) disregard, overlook, put out of sight

The liberal opposition of our spirits,
liberal (adj.) 3 free-and-easy, unrestrained
opposition (n.) 1 presenting for combat, contesting, encounter

If over-boldly we have borne ourselves

In the converse of breath. Your gentleness
breath (n.) 1 utterance, speech, voice
converse (n.) conversation, discourse, interaction
gentleness (n.) 1 nobility, good breeding, courtesy

Was guilty of it. Farewell, worthy lord!

A heavy heart bears not a humble tongue.
heavy (adj.) 1 sorrowful, sad, gloomy See Topics: Frequency count
humble (adj.) 1 polite, well-mannered, civil

Excuse me so, coming too short of thanks
suit (n.) 1 formal request, entreaty, petition See Topics: Frequency count

For my great suit so easily obtained.


KING

The extreme parts of time extremely forms
part (n.) 4 action, conduct, behaviour

All causes to the purpose of his speed,
purpose (n.) 1 intention, aim, plan See Topics: Frequency count

And often at his very loose decides
loose (n.) [archery] moment of release, crucial point

That which long process could not arbitrate.
process (n.) 2 proceedings, dealings

And though the mourning brow of progeny
brow (n.) 1 appearance, aspect, countenance See Topics: Frequency count

Forbid the smiling courtesy of love

The holy suit which fain it would convince,
convince (v.) 3 establish, prove, demonstrate
fain (adv.) gladly, willingly See Topics: Frequency count

Yet, since love's argument was first on foot,
argument (n.) 3 subject, point, theme, target

Let not the cloud of sorrow jostle it

From what it purposed; since to wail friends lost
wail (v.) bewail, lament, grieve [for]

Is not by much so wholesome-profitable
wholesome-profitable (adj.) beneficial to well-being

As to rejoice at friends but newly found.


PRINCESS

I understand you not. My griefs are double.


BEROWNE

Honest plain words best pierce the ear of grief;

And by these badges understand the King.
badge (n.) 1 outward sign, symbol, mark

For your fair sakes have we neglected time,
neglect (v.) 1 cause to be neglected

Played foul play with our oaths. Your beauty, ladies,

Hath much deformed us, fashioning our humours
humour (n.) 2 fancy, whim, inclination, caprice

Even to the opposed end of our intents;
end (n.) 1 purpose, aim, design
intent (n.) intention, purpose, aim See Topics: Frequency count

And what in us hath seemed ridiculous –

As love is full of unbefitting strains,
strain (n.) 2 trait, feature, tendency

All wanton as a child, skipping and vain,
skipping (adj.) 1 frivolous, flighty, frolicsome
vain (adj.) 1 foolish, silly, stupid
wanton (adj.) 1 carefree, light-hearted, frolicsome, playful

Formed by the eye and therefore, like the eye,

Full of straying shapes, of habits, and of forms,
form (n.) 1 image, likeness, shape
habit (n.) 3 behaviour, bearing, demeanour
straying (adj.) winding, twisting, rambling

Varying in subjects as the eye doth roll

To every varied object in his glance;

Which parti-coated presence of loose love
loose (adj.) 3 flirtatious, unconstrained, uninhibited
parti-coated (adj.) motley, of many forms
presence (n.) 5 appearance, bearing, demeanour

Put on by us, if, in your heavenly eyes,

Have misbecomed our oaths and gravities,
gravity (n.) 1 respectability, authority, dignified position
misbecome (v.) appear unbecoming to, be unseemly to

Those heavenly eyes, that look into these faults,

Suggested us to make. Therefore, ladies,
suggest (v.) 1 tempt, prompt, incite

Our love being yours, the error that love makes

Is likewise yours. We to ourselves prove false
false (adj.) 1 treacherous, traitorous, perfidious See Topics: Frequency count

By being once false for ever to be true