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The Dramatis Personæ retained in the Condensation are : THESEUS, Duke of Athens. | HIPPOLYTA, Queen of the AmaEGEUS, Father to Hermia.
2018,° betrothed to Theseus. LYSANDER, ? s in love with Hermia.
HERMIA, daughter to Egeus, in DEMETRIUS, í
love with Lysander. PHILOSTRATE,9 Master of the
HELENA, in love with Demetrius. Revelsd to Theseus.
OBERON, King of the Fairies. QUINCE, a Carpenter.
TITANIA, Queen of the Fairies. Snug, a Joiner.
Puck, or Robin Good-fellow. Bottom, a Weaver.
PEAS-BLOSSOM, FLUTE, a Beilous-mender.
Мотн, Snout, a Tinker,
Other Fairies attending.
Theseus, Duke of Athens, is on the eve of marriage with Hippolyta, Queen of the Amazons. The nuptials are to be celebrated with all the pageantry that usually attends the union of reigning princes. The populace-good-natured souls !-happy that their rulers are likely to be multiplied, and their taxes increased and levied in every shape,-set themselves to prepare all sorts of joyful indulgence.
While Theseus is in his chair of State, discharging his judicial functions, Egeus, the father of the Lady Hermia, appears, to complain of his daughter—who had violated the Athenian law by refusing to marry Demetrius, whom her father had selected as her husband.
With Egeus and his daughter Hermia, Demetrius and Lysander appear. Lysander is in love with Hermia, and is also the lover of her choice. Demetrius is the suitor approved by the father, but by the daughter he is the rejected.
Before the entrance of Egeus, Theseus thus addresses his brideelect: The. Now, fair Hippolyta, our nuptial hour
Draws-on apace;' four happy days bring-in
Long withering-out a young man's revenue.
* an anglicized title for Prince. bthe capital of modern Greere (formerly, the chief city of the aucient state of Attica,) on the rivulets Ili-sus and Cephissus; its barbour is the celebrated Piræus. cthe anglicized name for Philostratnis.
dan officer appointed to superintend the amusements of the court. (His duties in England were discontinued in the reign of George III.) ea fabulous race of warrior-women who inhabited the Caucasus mountain-range (between the Black and Caspian seas). "quickly.
Four nights will quickly 'dream away the time;
Of our solemnities.
With pomp, with triumph, and with revelling!
Against my child, my daughter Hermia.-
Immediately provided in that case.
To you your father should be as a 'god. —
Demetrius is a 'worthy gentleman ?
In 'himself he is;
The 'other must be held the 'worthier.
I know not by what 'power I am made bold,
"great public display. a leader, commander. fby the Athenian law, parents had power of life and death over
*0. R. now bent. bO. R. the. bewitched.
their children. & condition as a suitor.
But I beseech your Grace that I may know
If I refuse to wed Demetrius.
For ever the society of 'men.
Grows, lives, and dies in 'single blessedness.
The sealing-day betwixt 'my love and me
Demetrius speaks :
Thy crazed' title to 'my certain 'right.
you marry 'him. 'I am, my lord, as well-'derived as he, As well 'possessed ;' 'my love is 'more than his. My fortunes every way as fairly ranked· If not with 'vantage-as Demetrius': And, (which is more than 'all these boasts can be,) I am beloved of beauteous Hermia. Demetrius, (I 'li avouch it to his face), Made love to Nedar's daughter, Helena, And won her soul; and she, sweet lady, 'dotes, 'Devoutly dotes, dotes in 'idolatry,
Upon this spotted" and inconstant man. *as decreed by law. b distinctive dress. c shut up, confined. 10. R. earthlier happy. e freed from impurity.
fi. e., your father. & the goddess of chastity: her altar was at Ephesus. promise solemnly. silly, impaired.
10. R. head, m polluted (as opposed to spotless).
Exeunt Thes, Hip.,
The. I must confess that I have 'heard so much,
And with Demetrius thought to have 'spoke thereof;
How chance the roses there do 'fade so fast? Her. Belike' for want of rain,—which I could well
Beteemo them from the tempest of mine eyes.
Could ever 'hear by tale or history,
'So quick, 'bright things come to 'confusion. Her. If then true lovers have been 'ever crossed,
It stands as an edictk in 'destiny:
Wishes, and Tears,-poor 'Fancy's' followers.
I have a widow-aunt,—a dowager * personal business.
• probably. permit them to flow freely. d Eigh me (in the quarto). • race, family. funsuitably matched (grafted), 0. R. misgrafféd.
ho, R. momentany. i dark (as if blackened with coal).
m argument to persuade,
80. R. merit j sudden outburst. k fixed decree,
Of great revenue,--and she hath no child:
If thou lov'st me, then,
There will I stay for thee.
My good Lysander!
To-morrow, "truly will I meet with thee.
The lady Helena is the victim of unrequited love. In order to regain the affections of Demetrius, she forgets the dignity of a high-minded woman- 1-who
" Should be wooed, but not unsought be won.” Her. Heaven speed fair Helena! Whither away? Hel. Call you 'me fair? that fair again unsay.
Demetrius loves your fair :' O happy fair!
Your eyes are lode-stars, and your tongue's sweet air
You sway the motion of Demetrius' heart?
Lysander and myself will flyk this place.
cbeyond. the harbinger of Spring, is one of the most popular rustic holidays in 1: a Queen is chosen to preside over the various sports and pastimes. vido), the son of Jupiter and Venus, the god of love : a winged boy, v and quiver. f he had two kinds of arrows: one tipped with gold, the other with lead, to kill it.
10. R. remoued
o steal forth from.
h goddess of love, Cupid : her chariot was drawn by doves. beauty. į leading pole-star, attracting and guiding.
k flee from.