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Mer. Why, is not this better now than groaning for love? now art thou sociable, now art thou Romeo; now art thou what thou art, by art as well as by nature : for this drivelling love is like a great natural, that runs lolling up and down to hide his bauble in a hole.
Ben. Stop there, stop there,
Mer. Thou desirest me to stop in my tale against the hair,
Ben. Thou wouldst else have made thy tale large.
Mer. O, thou art deceived; I would have made it short: for I was come to the whole depth of my tale; and meant, indeed, to occupy the argument no longer.
Ro. Here's goodly geer! 1
Enter NURSE and PETER.
Mer. A sail, a sail, a sail !
Mer. Pr’ythee, do, good Peter, to hide her face ; for her fan 's the fairer of the two.
Nurse. God ye good morrow, gentlemen.
Mer. Tis no less, I tell you ; for the bawdy hand of the dial is now upon the prick of noon.
Nurse. Out upon you! what a man are you !
Ro. One, gentlewoman, that God hath made himself to mar.
Nurse. By my troth, it is well said ;--for himself to mår, quoth 'a ?-Gentlemen, can any of you tell me where I may find the young Romeo ?
Ro. I can tell you; but young Romeo will be older when you have found him than he was when you sought him: I am the youngest of that name, for fault of a worse.
Nurse. You say well.
Mer. Yea, is the worst well ? very well took, i' faith ; wisely, wisely.
Nurse. If you be he, sir, I desire some confidence
Ben. She will indite him to some supper.
Mer. No hare, sir; unless a hare, sir, in a lenten pie, that is something stale and hoar ere it be spent.
• An old hare hoar,
And an old hare hoar,
But a hare that is hoar,
Is too much for a score,
When it hoars ere it be spent.' Romeo, will you come to your father's! we ’ll to dinner thither.
Ro. I will follow you.
lady. [Exeunt Mercutio and Benvolio. Nurse. Marry, farewell !—I pray you, sir, what saucy merchant i was this, that was so full of his ropery ? 2
Ro. A gentleman, nurse, that loves to hear himself talk; and will speak more in a minute than he will stand to in a month.
Nurse. An'a speak any thing against me, I'll · take him down an 'a were lustier than he is, and twenty such Jacks; and if I cannot, I 'll find those that shall. Scurvy knave! I am none of his flirtgills; I am none of his skains-mates.3-And thou must stand by too, and suffer every knave to use me at his pleasure ?
Peter. I saw no man use you at his pleasure; if I had, my weapon should quickly have been out, I warrant you. I dare draw as soon as another man, if I see occasion in a good quarrel, and the law on my side.
Nurse. Now, afore God, I am so vexed, that every part about me quivers. Scurvy knave! Pray you, sir, a word: and as I told you, my young lady bade me inquire you out: what she bade me say, I will keep to myself; but first let me tell ye, if ye should lead her into a fool's paradise, as they say, it
1 A term of disrespect, in contradistinction to gentleman.
Roguery. s Cut-throat companions. A skain signifies a sbort sword.
were a very gross kind of behavior, as they say; for the gentlewoman is young; and, therefore, if you should deal double with her, truly, it were an ill thing to be offered to any gentlewoman, and very weak dealing.
Ro. Nurse, commend me to thy lady and mistress. I protest unto thee,
Nurse. Good heart! and, i' faith, I will tell her as much. Lord, lord, she will be a joyful woman.
Ro. What wilt thou tell her, nurse ? thou dost not mark me.
Nurse. I will tell her, sir, that you do protest ; which, as I take it, is a gentlemanlike offer.
Ro. Bid her devise some means to come to shrift 1
Nurse. No, truly, sir, not a penny.
there. Ro. And stay, good nurse, behind the abbey
Farewell !-Commend me to thy mistress.
Nurse. Now God in heaven bless thee !-Hark
Ro. What say'st thou, my dear nurse ?
Ro. I warrant thee; my man 's as true as steel.
Nurse. Well, sir; my mistress is the sweetest lady-Lord, lord! when 'twas a little prating thing, -0,—there's a nobleman in town, one Paris, that would fain lay knife aboard; but she, good soul, had as lief see a toad, a very toad, as see him. I anger her sometimes, and tell her that Paris is the properer man; but, I'll warrant you, when I say so, she looks as pale as any clout in the varsal world. Doth not rosemary and Romeo begin both with a letter?
Ro. Ay, nurse; what of that? both with an R.
Nurse. Ah, mocker! that's the dog's name : R is for the dog. No; I know it begins with some other letter; and she hath the prettiest sententious of it, of you and rosemary, that it would do you good to hear it. Ro. Commend me to thy lady.
[Exit. Nurse. Ay, a thousand times.-Peter! Peter. Anon? Nurse. Peter, take my fan, and go before.