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When simpleness and duty tender it.
Go, bring them in ;-and take your places, ladies.

[Exit Pbiloft. Hip. I love not to see wretchedness o'ercharg'd, And duty in his service perishing.

The. Why, gentle sweet, you shall see no such thing. Hip. He says, they can do nothing in this kind.

Tbe. The kinder we, to give them thanks for nothing.
Our sport shall be, to take what they mistake:
And what poor duty cannot do,
Noble respect takes * it in might, not merit.
Where I have come, great clerks have purposed
To greet me with premeditated welcomes ;
Where I have seen them shiver, and look pale,
Make Y periods in the midst of sentences,
Throttle their practis’d accent in their fears,
And, in conclusion, dumbly have broke off,
Not paying me a welcome : Trust me, sweer,
Out of this filence, yet, I pick'd a welcome ;
And in the modesty of fearful duty
I read as much, as from the rattling tongue
Of sawcy and audacious eloquence.
Love, therefore, and tongue-ty'd simplicity,
In leaft, speak most, to my capacity.

Enter Philoftrate.
Philoft. So please your grace, the prologue is ? addrest.
The. Let him approach.

(Flour. Trum.
Enter the prologue.
Prol. If we offend, it is with our good will.
That you pould think, we come not to offend,

* it in might, not merit.)-the best in its might to do, for the best that might be done--the will for the deed.

y periods)—full stops. 2 addreft.]-prepared to enter.

But

But with good-will. To shew our simple skill,

That is the true beginning of our end. Consider then, we come but in despite.

We do not come, as minding to content you,
Our true intent is. All for your delight,

We are not bere. That you should bere repent you,
The a&tors are at band; and, by their show,
You shall know all, that you are like to know.

Tbe. This fellow doth not stand upon points.

Lyf. He hath rid his prologue, like a rough colt ; he knows not the stop. A good moral, my lord : It is not enough to speak, but to speak true.

Hip. Indeed he hath play'd on this prologue, like a child on a a recorder ; a sound, but not in government.

Tbe. His speech was like a tangled chain; nothing impair’d, but all disordered. Who is next?

Enter Pyramus and Thisbe, Wall, Moonshine, and Lion, as

in dumb show. Prol. “ Gentles, perchance, you wonder at this show ; “ But wonder on, till truth make all things plain. “ This man is Pyramus, if you would know;

“ This beauteous lady Thisby is, certain. " This man, with lime and rough-caft, doth present

“ Wall, that vile wall which did these lovers sunder: “And through wall's chink, poor souls, they are content

“ To whisper ; at the which let no man wonder. “ This man, with lanthorn, dog, and bush of thorn,

“ Presenteth moon-shine : for, if you will know, “ By moon-fhine did these lovers think no scorn

“To meet at Ninus' tomb, there, there to woo. “This grisy beast, which by name lion hight, “ The trusty Thisby, coming firft by night,

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“ Did scare away, or rather did affright:
“ And, as she fed, her mantle she did fall;

" Which lion vile with bloody mouth did stain : “ Anon comes Pyramus, sweet youth, and tall,

" And finds his trusty Thisby's mantle Nain : “ Whereat, with blade, with bloody blameful blade,

“He bravely broach'd his boiling bloody breast; “. And (Thisby tarrying in mulberry shade,)

“ His dagger drew, and died. For all the rest, « Let lion, moon-shine, wall, and lovers twain, At large discourse, while here they do remain."

[Exeunt all but Wall., The. I wonder, if the lion be to speak.

Dem, No wonder, my lord: one lion may, when many asses do.

Wall. “In this same interlude, it doth befall, " That I, one Snout by name, present a wall : “ And such a wall, as I would have you think, “ That had in it a cranny'd hole, or chink, “Through which the lovers, Pyramus and Thisby, “ Did whisper often very secretly. " This lome, this rough-cast, and this stone, doth shew " That I am that same wall ; the truth is fo: “ And this the cranny is, right and finifter,

[Holding up one hand, with a finger separated. “ Through which the fearful lovers are to whisper."

The. Would you desire lime and hair to speak better?

Dem. It is the wittiest partition that ever I heard discourse, my lord. Tbe. Pyramus draws near the wall : silence !

Enter Pyramus, Pyr. “O grim-look'd night! O night with hue fo black! “O night, which ever art, when day is not ! clet fall. d plain :)-torn.

"O

"O night, О night, alack, alack, alack,

“I fear my Thisby's promise is forgot ! “And thou, O wall, thou sweet, and lovely wall,

“ That stand'st between her father's ground and mine; “Thou wall, O wall, O sweet and lovely wall,

“Shew me thy chink to blink through with mine eyne. “ Thanks, courteous wall : Jove shield thee well for this!

“But what fee I? No Thisby do I fee. “O wicked wall, through whom I see no bliss ; “Curst be thy stones for thus deceiving me !"

Tbe. The wall, methinks, being sensible, should curse again.

Pyr. No, in truth, sir, he should not. Deceiving me, is Thisby's cue ; she is to enter now, and I am to spy her through the wall. You shall fee, it will fall pat as I told you :-Yonder she comes.

Enter Thisoy. This. O wall, full often hast thou heard my moans,

“For parting my fair Pyramus and me: “My cherry lips have often kiss'd thy stones ;

“ Thy stones with lime and hair knit up in thee." Pyr. “ I see a voice : now will I to the chink, " To spy an I can hear my Thisby's face. “ Thisby!”

Tbil. My love! thou art my love, I think.”

Pyr. “ Think what thou wilt, I am thy lover's grace ; "And like · Limander am I trusty still.”

Tbif. " And I like Helen, till the fates me kill.”
Pyr. “ Not Shafalus to Procrus was so true.
This. As Shafalus to Procrus, I to you."
Pyr. “O, kiss me through the hole of this vile wall.”

* Limander)-a corruption of Alexander, another name for Paris :or of Leander, as Helen may be of Hero. Cephalus and Procris. F4

This.

This. I kiss the wall's hole, not your lips at all.”
Pyr. "Wilt thou at Ninny's tomb meet me straightway?”
This. " Tide life, tide death, I come without delay.” .

Wall. Thus have I, wall, my part discharged so ; “ And, being done, thus wall away doth go.”

[Exeunt Wall, Pyramus, and Thisbe. The. Now is the mural down between the two neighbours.

Dem. No remedy, my lord, when walls are so wilful to 8 hear without warning.

Hip. This is the filliest stuff that ever I heard

The. The best bin this kind are but shadows : and the worst are no worse, if imagination amend them.

Hip. It must be your imagination then, and not theirs.

The. If we imagine no worse of them, than they of themselves, they may pass for excellent men. Here come two noble beasts in, ia moon, and a lion.

Enter Lion and Moonshine
Lion. You, ladies, you, whose gentle hearts do fear

The smallest monstrous mouse that creeps on floor, « May now, perchance, both quake and tremble here,

" When lion rough in wildest rage doth roar.
“ Then know that I, one Snug the joiner am ;
“k A lion fell, nor else no lion's dam :
“ For if I should as lion come in strife
“ Into this place, 'twere pity on my life.”

The. A very gentle beast, and of a good conscience.
Dem. The very best at a beast, my lord, that e'er I saw.

8 hear without warning. ]-to listen to clandestinely, or over-hear the conversation of the next door neighbour-" Walls have ears." Prov. rear-no wonder if they be down as soon as up, when rear'd without due warning

h in this kind ]-of actors. I a man-a moon-calf. & A lion fell, nor elje no lion's dam :]-Neither a lion, nor lioness.

Lys.

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