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O, what a scene of foolery I have seen,
Of sighs, of groans, of sorrow, and of teen!
O me, with what strict patience have I sat,
To see a king transformed to a gnat!
To see great Hercules whipping a gigg,
And profound Solomon to tune a jigg,
And Nestor play at push-pin with the boys,
And critick Tymon laugh at idle toys!
Where lies thy grief, O tell me, good Dumain?
And, gentle Longaville, where lies thy pain?
And where my liege's? all about the breast:-
A caudle, ho!

King. Too bitter is thy jest.
Are we betray'd thus to thy over-view?

Biron. Not you by me, but I betray'd to you; I, that am honest; I, that hold it sin To break the vow I am engaged in; I am betray'd, by keeping company With moon-like men, of strange inconstancy. When shall you see me write a thing in rhyme? Or groan for Joan? or spend a minute's time In pruning me? When shall you hear that I Will praise a hand, a foot, a face, an eye, A gait, a state, a brow, a breast, a waist, A leg, a limb?King.

Soft; Whither away so fast?
A true man, or a thief, that gallops so ?
Biron. I post from love; good lover, let me go.

Enter Jaquenetta and CoSTARD.
Jaq. God bless the king !

King

King.

King.

What present hast thou there? Cost. Some certain treason.

What makes treason here? Cost. Nay, it makes nothing, sir.

If it mar nothing neither, The treason, and you, go in peace away together.

Jaq. I beseech your grace, let this letter be read; Our parson misdoubts it; 'twas treason, he said.

King. Biron, read it over. [Giving him the letter. Where hadst thou it?

Jaq. Of Costard.
King. Where hadst thou it?
Cost. Of Dun Adramadio, Dun Adramadio.
King. How now! what is in you? why dost thou

tear it?
Biron. A toy, my liege, a toy; your grace needs

not fear it. Long. It did move him to passion, and therefore

let's hear it. Dum. It is Biron's writing, and here is his name.

[Picks up the pieces. Biron. Ah, you whoreson loggerhead, [To Cos

TARD,] you were born to do me shame.Guilty, my lord, guilty; I confess, I confess.

King. What?
Biron. That you three fools lack'd me fool to make

up the mess :
He, he, and you, and you, my liege, and I,
Are pick-purses in loves, and we deserve to die.
O, dismiss this audience. and I shall tell you more.

King.

Dum. Now the number is even.
Biron.

True, true; we are four:
Will these turtles be gone?

Hence, sirs; away.
Cost. Walk aside the true folk, and let the traitors

stay. (Exeunt Costard and Jaquenetta. Biron. Sweet lords, sweet lovers, O let us em

brace! As true we are, as flesh and blood can be: The sea will ebb and flow, heaven show his face;

Young blood will not obey an old decree: We cannot cross the cause why we were born; Therefore, of all hands must we be forsworn. King. What, did these rent lines show some love

of thine?
Biron. Did they, quoth you? Who sees the hea-

venly Rosaline,
That, like a rude and savage man of Inde,

At the first opening of the gorgeous east,
Bows not his vassal head; and, strucken blind,

Kisses the base ground with obedient breast? What peremptory eagle-sighted eye

Dares look upon the beaven of her brow, That is not blinded by her majesty? King. What zeal, what fury hath inspir'd theo

now?
My love, her mistress, is a gracious moon;

She, an attending star, scarce seen a light.
Biron. My eyes are then no eyes, nor I Birón:
O, but for my love, day would turn to night!

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Of all complexions the cull'd sovereignty

Do meet, as at a fair, in her fair cheek; Where several worthies make one dignity;

Where nothing wants, that want itself doth seek. Lend me the flourish of all gentle tongues,–

Fie, painted rhetorick! O, she needs it not: To things of sale a seller's praise belongs, She passes praise; then praise too short doth

blot. A wither'd hermit, five-score winters worn,

Might shake off fifty, looking in her eye: Beauty doth varnish age, as if new-born,

And gives the crutch the cradle's infancy. 0, 'tis the sun, that maketh all things shine!

King. By heaven, thy love is black as ebony.
Biron. Is ebony like her! O wood divine!

A wife of such wood were felicity.
0, who can give an oath? where is a book?

That I may swear, beauty doth beauty lack, If that she learn not of her eye to look:

No face is fair, that is not full so black. King. O paradox! Black is the badge of hell,

The hue of dungeons, and the scowl of night; And beauty's crest becomes the heavens well. Biron. Devils soonest tempt, resembling spirits of

light. O, if in black my lady's brows be deckt,

It mourns, that painting, and usurping hair, Should ravish doters with a false aspéct;

And therefore is she born to make black fair.

Her favour turns the fashion of the days;

For native blood is counted painting now; And therefore red, that would avoid dispraise,

Paints itself black, to imitate her brow. Dum. To look like her, are chimney-sweepers

black. Long. And, since her time, are colliers counted

bright. King. And Ethiops of their sweet complexion

crack. Dum. Dark needs no candles now, for dark is light. Biron. Your mistresses dare never come in rain,

For fear their colours should be wash'd away. King. 'Twere good, yours did; for, sir, to tell you

plain, I'll find a fairer face not wash'd to-day. Biron. I'll prove her fair, or talk till dooms-day

here. King. No devil will fright thee then so much as

she. Dum. I never knew man hold vile stuff so dear. Long. Look, here's thy love: my foot and her face see.

[Showing his shoe. Biron. O, if the streets were paved with thine eyes,

Her feet were much too dainty for such tread! Dum. O vile! then as she goes, what upward lies

The street should see as she walk'd over head. King. But what of this ? Are we not all in love? Biron. O, nothing so sure; and thereby all for

sworn.

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