A Midsummer Night's Dream

Act I
scene III
Act II
scene III
Act IV
scene III
Act V
scene I
First folio
Modern text


Key line

Enter Queene of Fairies, with her traine.Enter Titania, Queen of Fairies, with her train MND II.ii.1.1
Come, now a Roundell, and a Fairy song;Come, now a roundel and a fairy song,roundel (n.)
dance in a circle
MND II.ii.1
Then for the third part of a minute hence,Then for the third part of a minute hence: MND II.ii.2
Some to kill Cankers in the muske rose buds,Some to kill cankers in the muskrose buds,canker (n./adj.)
grub that destroys plant buds and leaves, cankerworm, parasite
MND II.ii.3
Some warre with Reremise, for their leathern wings,Some war with reremice for their leathern wingsreremouse (n.)

old form: Reremise
MND II.ii.4
leathern (adj.)
To make my small Elues coates, and some keepe backeTo make my small elves coats, and some keep back MND II.ii.5
The clamorous Owle that nightly hoots and wondersThe clamorous owl that nightly hoots and wonders MND II.ii.6
At our queint spirits: Sing me now asleepe,At our quaint spirits. Sing me now asleep;quaint (adj.)

old form: queint
pretty, attractive, lovely
MND II.ii.7
a (prep.)
variant form of 'to'
Then to your offices, and let me rest.Then to your offices, and let me rest.office (n.)
task, service, duty, responsibility
MND II.ii.8
Fairies Sing.Fairies sing MND II.ii.9.1
You spotted Snakes with double tongue,You spotted snakes with double tongue,double (adj.)
forked, divided
MND II.ii.9
Thorny Hedgehogges be not seene,Thorny hedgehogs, be not seen; MND II.ii.10
Newts and blinde wormes do no wrong,Newts and blindworms, do no wrong, MND II.ii.11
Come not neere our Fairy Queene.Come not near our Fairy Queen. MND II.ii.12
Philomele with melodie,Philomel with melodyPhilomel, Philomela (n.)
[pron: 'filomel] daughter of Pandion, king of Athens; Tereus raped her and cut out her tongue, but she told the tale in her embroidery; the gods turned her into a nightingale after she took her revenge
MND II.ii.13
Sing in your sweet Lullaby.Sing in our sweet lullaby, MND II.ii.14
Lulla, lulla, lullaby, lulla, lulla, lullaby,Lulla, lulla, lullaby; lulla, lulla, lullaby. MND II.ii.15
Neuer harme, Never harm MND II.ii.16
nor spell, nor charme,Nor spell nor charm MND II.ii.17
Come our louely Lady nye,Come our lovely lady nigh. MND II.ii.18
So good night with Lullaby.So good night, with lullaby. MND II.ii.19
2. Fairy. FIRST FAIRY 
Weauing Spiders come not heere,Weaving spiders, come not here; MND II.ii.20
Hence you long leg'd Spinners, hence:Hence, you longlegged spinners, hence!spinner (n.)
spider, cranefly, daddy-longlegs
MND II.ii.21
Beetles blacke approach not neere;Beetles black, approach not near, MND II.ii.22
Worme nor Snayle doe no offence.Worm nor snail, do no offence.offence (n.)
damage, injury, harm
MND II.ii.23
Philomele with melody, &c.Philomel with melody MND II.ii.24
Sing in our sweet lullaby, MND II.ii.25
Lulla, lulla, lullaby; lulla, lulla, lullaby. MND II.ii.26
Never harm MND II.ii.27
Nor spell nor charm MND II.ii.28
Come our lovely lady nigh. MND II.ii.29
So good night, with lullaby. MND II.ii.30
Titania sleeps MND II.ii.31
Hence away, now all is well;Hence, away! Now all is well. MND II.ii.31
One aloofe, stand Centinell. One aloof stand sentinel!aloof (adv.)

old form: aloofe
a short distance away, to one side
MND II.ii.32
Shee sleepes.Exeunt Fairies MND II.ii.32
Enter Oberon.Enter Oberon MND II.ii.33.1
He squeezes the flower on Titania's eyes MND II.ii.33.2
What thou seest when thou dost wake,What thou seest when thou dost wake, MND II.ii.33
Doe it for thy true Loue take:Do it for thy true love take; MND II.ii.34
Loue and languish for his sake.Love and languish for his sake. MND II.ii.35
Be it Ounce, or Catte, or Beare,Be it ounce or cat or bear,ounce (n.)
MND II.ii.36
Pard, or Boare with bristled haire,Pard, or boar with bristled hairpard (n.)
panther, leopard
MND II.ii.37
In thy eye that shall appeare,In thy eye that shall appear MND II.ii.38
When thou wak'st, it is thy deare,When thou wakest, it is thy dear. MND II.ii.39
Wake when some vile thing is neere.Wake when some vile thing is near! MND II.ii.40
Exit MND II.ii.40
Enter Lisander and Hermia.Enter Lysander and Hermia MND II.ii.41
Faire loue, you faint with wandring in ye woods,Fair love, you faint with wandering in the wood; MND II.ii.41
And to speake troth I haue forgot our way:And – to speak truth – I have forgot our way.troth (n.)
truth, good faith
MND II.ii.42
Wee'll rest vs Hermia, if you thinke it good,We'll rest us, Hermia, if you think it good, MND II.ii.43
And tarry for the comfort of the day.And tarry for the comfort of the day. MND II.ii.44
Be it so Lysander; finde you out a bed,Be it so, Lysander; find you out a bed, MND II.ii.45
For I vpon this banke will rest my head.For I upon this bank will rest my head. MND II.ii.46
One turfe shall serue as pillow for vs both,One turf shall serve as pillow for us both; MND II.ii.47
One heart, one bed, two bosomes, and one troth.One heart, one bed, two bosoms, and one troth. MND II.ii.48
Nay good Lysander, for my sake my deereNay, good Lysander, for my sake, my dear, MND II.ii.49
Lie further off yet, doe not lie so neere.Lie further off yet; do not lie so near. MND II.ii.50
O take the sence sweet, of my innocence,O, take the sense, sweet, of my innocence! MND II.ii.51
Loue takes the meaning, in loues conference,Love takes the meaning in love's conferenceconference (n.)
conversation, talk, discourse
MND II.ii.52
I meane that my heart vnto yours is knit,I mean that my heart unto yours is knit, MND II.ii.53
So that but one heart can you make of it.So that but one heart we can make of it. MND II.ii.54
Two bosomes interchanged with an oath,Two bosoms interchained with an oath –  MND II.ii.55
So then two bosomes, and a single troth.So then two bosoms and a single troth. MND II.ii.56
Then by your side, no bed-roome me deny,Then by your side no bed-room me deny, MND II.ii.57
For lying so, Hermia, I doe not lye.For lying so, Hermia, I do not lie. MND II.ii.58
Lysander riddles very prettily;Lysander riddles very prettily.prettily (adv.)
cleverly, ingeniously; or: charmingly
MND II.ii.59
Now much beshrew my manners and my pride,Now much beshrew my manners and my pridebeshrew, 'shrew (v.)
curse, devil take, evil befall
MND II.ii.60
If Hermia meant to say, Lysander lied.If Hermia meant to say Lysander lied. MND II.ii.61
But gentle friend, for loue and courtesieBut, gentle friend, for love and courtesygentle (adj.)
soft, tender, kind
MND II.ii.62
Lie further off, in humane modesty,Lie further off, in human modesty: MND II.ii.63
Such separation, as may well be said,Such separation as may well be said MND II.ii.64
Becomes a vertuous batchelour, and a maide,Becomes a virtuous bachelor and a maid,become (v.)
be fitting, befit, be appropriate to
MND II.ii.65
So farre be distant, and good night sweet friend;So far be distant, and good night, sweet friend; MND II.ii.66
Thy loue nere alter, till thy sweet life end.Thy love ne'er alter till thy sweet life end. MND II.ii.67
Amen, amen, to that faire prayer, say I,Amen, amen, to that fair prayer say I, MND II.ii.68
And then end life, when I end loyalty:And then end life when I end loyalty. MND II.ii.69
Heere is my bed, sleepe giue thee all his rest.Here is my bed: sleep give thee all his rest. MND II.ii.70
With halfe that wish, the wishers eyes be prest.With half that wish the wisher's eyes be pressed. MND II.ii.71
They sleepe.They sleep MND II.ii.72.1
Enter Pucke.Enter Puck MND II.ii.72.2
Puck. PUCK 
Through the Forest haue I gone,Through the forest have I gone, MND II.ii.72
But Athenian finde I none,But Athenian found I none MND II.ii.73
One whose eyes I might approueOn whose eyes I might approveapprove (v.)

old form: approue
prove, confirm, corroborate, substantiate
MND II.ii.74
This flowers force in stirring loue.This flower's force in stirring love. MND II.ii.75
Night and silence: who is heere?Night and silence. – Who is here? MND II.ii.76
Weedes of Athens he doth weare:Weeds of Athens he doth wear.weed (n.)

old form: Weedes
(plural) garments, dress, clothes
MND II.ii.77
This is he (my master said)This is he my master said MND II.ii.78
Despised the Athenian maide:Despised the Athenian maid; MND II.ii.79
And heere the maiden sleeping sound,And here the maiden, sleeping sound MND II.ii.80
On the danke and durty ground.On the dank and dirty ground. MND II.ii.81
Pretty soule, she durst not lyePretty soul, she durst not lie MND II.ii.82
Neere this lacke-loue, this kill-curtesie.Near this lack-love, this kill-courtesy. MND II.ii.83
Churle, vpon thy eyes I throwChurl, upon thy eyes I throw MND II.ii.84
All the power this charme doth owe:All the power this charm doth owe.owe (v.)
own, possess, have
MND II.ii.85
He squeezes the flower on Lysander's eyes MND II.ii.86
When thou wak'st, let loue forbidWhen thou wakest let love forbid MND II.ii.86
Sleepe his seate on thy eye-lid.Sleep his seat on thy eyelid. MND II.ii.87
So awake when I am gone:So awake when I am gone; MND II.ii.88
For I must now to Oberon. For I must now to Oberon. MND II.ii.89
Exit.Exit MND II.ii.89
Enter Demetrius and Helena running.Enter Demetrius and Helena, running MND II.ii.90
Stay, though thou kill me, sweete Demetrius.Stay though thou kill me, sweet Demetrius! MND II.ii.90
I charge thee hence, and do not haunt me thus.I charge thee hence; and do not haunt me thus. MND II.ii.91
O wilt thou darkling leaue me? do not so.O, wilt thou darkling leave me? Do not so!darkling (adv.)
in the dark, in darkness
MND II.ii.92
Stay on thy perill, I alone will goe.Stay, on thy peril. I alone will go. MND II.ii.93
Exit Demetrius.Exit MND II.ii.93
O I am out of breath, in this fond chace,O, I am out of breath in this fond chase.chase (n.)

old form: chace
pursuit, sequence, hunt
MND II.ii.94
fond (adj.)
foolish, stupid, mad
The more my prayer, the lesser is my grace,The more my prayer, the lesser is my grace.grace (n.)
success, favourable outcome, fortune
MND II.ii.95
Happy is Hermia, wheresoere she lies;Happy is Hermia, wheresoe'er she lies, MND II.ii.96
For she hath blessed and attractiue eyes.For she hath blessed and attractive eyes. MND II.ii.97
How came her eyes so bright? Not with salt teares.How came her eyes so bright? Not with salt tears –  MND II.ii.98
If so, my eyes are oftner washt then hers.If so, my eyes are oftener washed than hers. MND II.ii.99
No, no, I am as vgly as a Beare;No, no – I am as ugly as a bear; MND II.ii.100
For beasts that meete me, runne away for feare,For beasts that meet me run away for fear. MND II.ii.101
Therefore no maruaile, though DemetriusTherefore no marvel though Demetrius MND II.ii.102
Doe as a monster, flie my presence thus.Do as a monster fly my presence thus. MND II.ii.103
What wicked and dissembling glasse of mine,What wicked and dissembling glass of mineglass (n.)

old form: glasse
mirror, looking-glass
MND II.ii.104
dissembling (adj.)
deceitful, hypocritical, false
Made me compare with Hermias sphery eyne?Made me compare with Hermia's sphery eyne?eyne (n.)
[archaism] eyes
MND II.ii.105
sphery (adj.)
star-like, heavenly, celestial
compare (v.)
vie, rival, compete
But who is here? Lysander on the ground;But who is here? – Lysander on the ground? MND II.ii.106
Deade or asleepe? I see no bloud, no wound,Dead? – or asleep? I see no blood, no wound. MND II.ii.107
Lysander, if you liue, good sir awake.Lysander, if you live, good sir, awake! MND II.ii.108
(wakes) MND II.ii.109
And run through fire I will for thy sweet sake.And run through fire I will for thy sweet sake! MND II.ii.109
Transparent Helena, nature her shewes art,Transparent Helena, nature shows artart (n.)
magic, enchantment, trickery
MND II.ii.110
That through thy bosome makes me see thy heart.That through thy bosom makes me see thy heart. MND II.ii.111
Where is Demetrius? oh how fit a wordWhere is Demetrius? O, how fit a word MND II.ii.112
Is that vile name, to perish on my sword!Is that vile name to perish on my sword! MND II.ii.113
Do not say so Lysander, say not so:Do not say so, Lysander; say not so. MND II.ii.114
What though he loue your Hermia? Lord, what though?What though he love your Hermia, lord, what though? MND II.ii.115
Yet Hermia still loues you; then be content.Yet Hermia still loves you. Then be content.content (adj.)
satisfied, calm, easy in mind
MND II.ii.116
Content with Hermia? No, I do repentContent with Hermia? No, I do repent MND II.ii.117
The tedious minutes I with her haue spent.The tedious minutes I with her have spent. MND II.ii.118
Not Hermia, but Helena now I loue;Not Hermia but Helena I love. MND II.ii.119
Who will not change a Rauen for a Doue?Who will not change a raven for a dove? MND II.ii.120
The will of man is by his reason sway'd:The will of man is by his reason swayed,will (n.)
desire, wish, liking, inclination
MND II.ii.121
And reason saies you are the worthier Maide.And reason says you are the worthier maid. MND II.ii.122
Things growing are not ripe vntill their season;Things growing are not ripe until their season; MND II.ii.123
So I being yong, till now ripe not to reason,So I, being young, till now ripe not to reason.ripe (v.)
ripen, mature
MND II.ii.124
And touching now the point of humane skill,And touching now the point of human skill,touch (v.)
achieve, accomplish, attain
MND II.ii.125
point (n.)
summit, apex, highest point
skill (n.)
discernment, discrimination, capacity to perceive
Reason becomes the Marshall to my will,Reason becomes the marshal to my will MND II.ii.126
And leades me to your eyes, where I orelookeAnd leads me to your eyes, where I o'erlookoverlook (v.)

old form: orelooke
look over, peruse, read through
MND II.ii.127
Loues stories, written in Loues richest booke.Love's stories written in love's richest book. MND II.ii.128
Wherefore was I to this keene mockery borne?Wherefore was I to this keen mockery born? MND II.ii.129
When at your hands did I deserue this scorne?When at your hands did I deserve this scorn? MND II.ii.130
Ist not enough, ist not enough, yong man,Is't not enough, is't not enough young man MND II.ii.131
That I did neuer, no nor neuer can,That I did never – no, nor never can –  MND II.ii.132
Deserue a sweete looke from Demetrius eye,Deserve a sweet look from Demetrius' eye, MND II.ii.133
But you must flout my insufficiency?But you must flout my insufficiency? MND II.ii.134
Good troth you do me wrong (good-sooth you do)Good troth, you do me wrong – good sooth, you do – sooth (n.)
truth [in exclamations, emphasizing an assertion]
MND II.ii.135
troth, good troth (n.)
exclamations, emphasizing an assertion - truly, indeed
In such disdainfull manner, me to wooe.In such disdainful manner me to woo. MND II.ii.136
But fare you well; perforce I must confesse,But fare you well. Perforce I must confessperforce (adv.)
of necessity, with no choice in the matter
MND II.ii.137
fare ... well (int.)
goodbye [to an individual]
I thought you Lord of more true gentlenesse.I thought you lord of more true gentleness.true (adj.)
honourable, virtuous, sincere
MND II.ii.138
gentleness (n.)

old form: gentlenesse
nobility, good breeding, courtesy
Oh, that a Lady of one man refus'd,O, that a lady of one man refused MND II.ii.139
Should of another therefore be abus'd. Should of another therefore be abused! MND II.ii.140
Exit.Exit MND II.ii.140
She sees not Hermia: Hermia sleepe thou there,She sees not Hermia. Hermia, sleep thou there, MND II.ii.141
And neuer maist thou come Lysander neere;And never mayst thou come Lysander near. MND II.ii.142
For as a surfeit of the sweetest thingsFor, as a surfeit of the sweetest things MND II.ii.143
The deepest loathing to the stomacke brings:The deepest loathing to the stomach brings, MND II.ii.144
Or as the heresies that men do leaue,Or as the heresies that men do leave MND II.ii.145
Are hated most of those that did deceiue:Are hated most of those they did deceive, MND II.ii.146
So thou, my surfeit, and my heresie,So thou, my surfeit and my heresy, MND II.ii.147
Of all be hated; but the most of me;Of all be hated, but the most of me! MND II.ii.148
And all my powers addresse your loue and might,And, all my powers, address your love and mightpower (n.)
faculty, function, ability
MND II.ii.149
address (v.)

old form: addresse
direct, apply, turn
To honour Helen, and to be her Knight. To honour Helen and to be her knight. MND II.ii.150
Exit.Exit MND II.ii.150
(wakes) MND II.ii.151
Helpe me Lysander, helpe me; do thy bestHelp me, Lysander, help me! Do thy best MND II.ii.151
To plucke this crawling serpent from my brest.To pluck this crawling serpent from my breast! MND II.ii.152
Aye me, for pitty; what a dreame was here?Ay me, for pity! – What a dream was here! MND II.ii.153
Lysander looke, how I do quake with feare:Lysander, look how I do quake with fear! MND II.ii.154
Me-thought a serpent eate my heart away,Methought a serpent ate my heart away,methinks(t), methought(s) (v.)

old form: Me-thought
it seems / seemed to me
MND II.ii.155
And yet sat smiling at his cruell prey.And you sat smiling at his cruel prey.prey (n.)
preying, violence, devouring
MND II.ii.156
Lysander, what remoou'd? Lysander, Lord,Lysander – what, removed? Lysander, lord! MND II.ii.157
What, out of hearing, gone? No sound, no word?What, out of hearing? Gone? No sound, no word? MND II.ii.158
Alacke where are you? speake and if you heare:Alack, where are you? Speak an if you hear.an if (conj.)
MND II.ii.159
Speake of all loues; I sound almost with feare.Speak, of all loves! I swoon almost with fear. MND II.ii.160
No, then I well perceiue you are not nye,No? Then I well perceive you are not nigh. MND II.ii.161
Either death or you Ile finde immediately. Either death or you I'll find immediately. MND II.ii.162
Exit.Exit MND II.ii.162
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