« AnteriorContinuar »
SCENE.-THE PALACE OF THESEUS, AT ATHENS. At the rise
of the curtain, to melodious strains, certain nobles are discovered in various groups about the scene. PHILOSTRATE, with some ladics of the Amason Court, are at the R. They all bow profoundly as THESEUS and HIPPOLITA enter, conversing, from L., and come forward, c.
The. Now, fair Hippolita, our nuptial hour
Hip. Four days will quickly steep themselves in nights ;
[Exit PHILOSTRATE. Hippolita, I woo'd thce with my sword, And won thy love, doing thee injuries ;
But I will wcd thce in another key,
[Hc lcads her to a lounge at R., where the women of her
court surround her. He reclincs beside her. Music, which is interrupted by entrance of EGEUS and HERMIA
from L. LYSANDER and DEMETRIUS follow. Ege. Happy bc Thescus, our renowned duke !
[11c knocls. The others also kneel, but rise immediately. The. Thanks, good Egcus. What's the news with thee?
Ege. Full of vexation come I, with complaint
[He crosses to LYSANDER.
The. What say you, Hermia ? be advis'd, fair maid :
Her. So is Lysander.
In himself he is.
Her. I would my father look'd but with my cyes !
Her. I do entreat your grace to pardon inc. [Knceling.
The. (Rising. ] Either to die thc dcath, or to abjure For over the society of men. (Advancing to hcr, as she rises. Therefore, fair Hermia, question your desires, Whether, if you yield not to your father's choice, You can endure the livery of a nun; For aye to be in shady cloister mew'd, To live a barren sister all your lisc, Chanting faint hymns to the cold fruitless moon. Thrice blessed they that master so their blood, To undergo such maiden pilgrimage : But earthly happier is thc rose distill'd, Than that, which, withering on the virgin thorn, Grows, lives, and dies in single blessedness.
Hor. So will I grow, so live, so die, my lord, Ere I will yield niy maiden heart and vow* Unto his lordship, whose unwished yoke My soul consents not to give sovereignty. The. Take time to pausc; and, by the next new moon,
[Returning to HIPPOLITA. (The scaling.day betwixt my lovc and me, For everlasting bond of fellowship,) Upon that day cither prepare to dic, For disobedience to your father's will ; Or else, to wed Demetrius, as he would ; Or on Diana's altar to protest, For aye, austerity and single life.
[Sits and converses with HIPPOLITA. Dem. Relent, sweet Herinia; and, Lysander, yield Thy crazed title to my certain right.
Lys. You have her father's love, Demetrius ;
Egi. Scornful Lysander | truc, he hath my love ;
[LYSANDER passes Egeus and addresses THESEUS.
The, I must confess that I have hcard so much,
[Rises and comes forward.
But, Demetrius, come;
Ege. With duty and desire, we follow you.
and Court, R.