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expound his dream. Methought I was—there is no man can tell what. Methought I was, and methought I had,-But man is but a patch'd fool, if he will offer to say what methought I had. The eye of man hath not heard, the ear of man hath not seen; man's hand is not able to taste, his tongue to conceive, nor his heart to report, what my dream was. I will get Peter Quince to write a ballad of this dream: it shall be call’d Bottom's Dream, because it hath no bottom; and I will sing it in the latter end of a play, before the duke: Peradventure, to make it the more gracious, I shall sing it at her death. [Exit.
Athens. A Room in Quince's House. Enter Quince, Flute, Snout, and Starveling.
Quin. Have you sent to Bottom's house? is he come home yet?
Star. He cannot be heard of. Out of doubt, he is transported.
Flu. If he come not, then the play is marr'd; It goes not forward, doth it?
Quin. It is not possible: you have not a man in all Athens, able to discharge Pyramus, but he..
Flu. No; he hath simply the best wit of any handycraft man in Athens.
Quin. Yea, and the best person too: and he is a very paramour, for a sweet voice,
Flu. You must say, paragon: a paramour is, God bless us! a thing of nought.
Enter Snug. Snug. Masters, the duke is coming from the temple, and there is two or three lords and ladies more married: if our sport had gone forward, we had all been made men.
Flu. O sweet bully Bottom! Thus hath he lost sixpence a-day during his life; he could not have 'scaped six-pence a day: an the duke had not given him sixpence a-day for playing Pyramus, I'll be hang'd; he would have deserv'd it: six-pence a-day, in Pyramus, or nothing.
Enter BoTTOM. Bot. Where are these lads? where are these hearts ?
Quin. Bottom!-O most courageous day! O most happy hour!
Bot. Masters, I am to discourse wonders: but, ask me not what; for, if I tell you, I am no true Athenian. I will tell you every thing right, as it fell out.
Quin. Let us hear, sweet Bottom.
Bot. Not a word of me. All that I will tell you, is, that the duke hath dined: Get your apparel together; good strings to your beards, new ribbons to your pumps; meet presently at the palace; every man look o'er his part; for, the short and the long is, our play is preferr'd. In any case, let Thisby
have clean linen; and let not him that plays the lion, pare his nails, for they shall hang out for the lion's claws. And, most dear actors, eat no onions, nor garlick, for we are to utter sweet breath; and I do not doubt but to hear them say, it is a sweet comedy. No more words; away; go, away. [Exeunt.
ACT V. SCENE I.
The same. An Apartment in the Palace of Theseus.
Enter Theseus, HIPPOLYTA, PHILOSTKATE, Lords,
and Attendants. Hip. 'Tis strange, my Theseus, that these lovers
speak of. The. More strange than true. I never may believess These antique fables, nor these fairy toys. Lovers, and madmen, have such seething brains, Such shaping fantasies, that apprehend More than cool reason ever comprehends. The lunatick, the lover, and the poet, Are of imagination all compact: One sees more devils than vast hell can hold; That is, the madman: the lover, all as frantick, Sees Helen's beauty in a brow of Egypt: The poet's eye, in a fine frenzy rolling, Doth glance from heaven to earth, from earth to
heaven; And, as imagination bodies forth
The forms of things unknown, the poet's pen
Hip. But all the story of the night told over,
Enter LYSANDER, DEMETRIUS, HERMIA, and
HELENA. The. Here come the lovers, full of joy and mirth. Joy, gentle friends! joy, and fresh days of love, Accompany your hearts ! Lys.
More than to us
Philost. Here, mighty Theseus,
The. Say, what abridgement have you for this
evening? What mask? what musick? How shall we beguile The lazy time, if not with some delight?
Philost. There is a brief, how many sports are ripe; Make choice of which your highness will see first.
[Giving a paper. The. reads.] The battle with the Centaurs, to besung
By an Athenian eunuch to the harp.
The riot of the tipsy Bacchanals,
Tearing the Thracian singer in their rage.
60 The thrice three muses mourning for the death
Of learning, late deceas'd in beggary. That is some satire, keen, and critical øl, Not sorting with a nuptial ceremony.
A tedious brief scene of young Pyramus,
And his love Thisbe; very tragical mirth.