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Will the faithful offer take
Of me, and all that I can make ;
Or else by him my love deny,

And then I'll study how to die.
Sil. Call you this chiding?
Cel. Alas, poor shepherd !

Ros. Do you pity him? no, he deserves no pity.Wilt thou love such a woman? - What, to make thee an instrument, and play false strains upon thee! not to be endured! Well, go your way to her, (for I see, love hath made thee a tame snake,) and say this to her ;

That if she love me, I charge her to love thee: if she will not, I will never have her, unless thou entreat for her. If you be a true lover, hence, and not a word; for here comes more company.

[Exit SilviuS.


Oli. Good-morrow, fair ones : Pray you, if you

know Where, in the purlieus of this forest, stands A sheep-cote, fenc'd about with olive-trees? Cel. West of this place, down in the neighbour

bottom, The rank of osiers, by the murmuring stream, Left on your right hand, brings you to the place: But at this hour the house doth keep itself, There's none within.

Oli. If that an eye may profit by a tongue, Then I should know you by description; Such garments, and such years: The boy is fair, Of female favour, and bestows himself Like a ripe sister : but the woman low, And browner than her brother. Are not you The owner of the house I did inquire for?

Cel. It is no boast, being ask'd, to say, we are.

if you

Oli. Orlando doth commend him to you both; And to that youth, he calls his Rosalind, He sends this bloody napkin ; Are you he?

Ros. I am: What must we understand by this? Oli. Some of my


will know of me What man I am, and how, and why, and where This handkerchief was stain'd. Cel.

I pray you, tell it. Oli. When last the young Orlando parted from

you, He left a promise to return again Within an hour ; and, pacing through the forest, Chewing the food of sweet and bitter fancy, Lo, what befel! he threw his eye aside, And, mark, what object did present itself! Under an oak, whose boughs were moss'd with age, And high top bald with dry antiquity, A wretched ragged man, o'ergrown with hair, Lay sleeping on his back: about his neck A green and gilded snake had wreath'd itself, Who with her head, nimble in threats, approach'd The opening of his mouth ; but suddenly Seeing Orlando, it unlink'd itself, And with indented glides did slip away Into a bush: under which bush's shade A lioness, with udders all drawn dry, Lay couching, head on ground, with cat-like watch, When that the sleeping man should stir ; for 'tis The royal disposition of that beast, To prey on nothing that doth seem as dead: This seen, Orlando did approach the man, And found it was his brother, his elder brother, Cel. O, I have heard him speak of that same.

brother; And he did render 7 him the most unnatural That liv'd 'mongst men.

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And well he might so do, For well I know he was unnatural.

Ros. But, to Orlando ; Did he leave him there, Food to the suck'd and hungry lioness?

Oli. Twice did he turn his back, and purpos'd so:
But kindness, nobler ever than revenge,
And nature, stronger than his just occasion,
Made him give battle to the lioness,
Who quickly fell before him; in which hurtling &
From miserable slumber I awak'd.

Cel. Are you his brother?

Was it


he rescu'd ? Cel. Was't you that did so oft contrive to kill

Oli. 'Twas I; but 'tis not I: I do not shame
To tell

what I was, since my

conversion So sweetly tastes, being the thing I am.

Ros. But, for the bloody napkin ?

By, and by
When from the first to last, betwixt us two,
Tears our recountments had most kindly bath'd,
As, how I came into that desert place;
In brief, he led me to the gentle duke,
Who gave me fresh array, and entertainment,
Committing me unto my brother's love;
Who led me instantly unto his cave,
There stripp'd himself, and here upon his
The lioness had torn some flesh away,
Which all this while had bled; and now he fainted,
And cry'd, in fainting, upon Rosalind.
Brief, I recover'd him ; bound


his wound; And, after some small space, being strong at heart, He sent me hither, stranger as I am, To tell this story, that you might excuse His broken promise, and to give this napkin, Dy'd in this blood; unto the shepherd youth That he in sport doth call his Rosalind.


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Cel. Why, how now, Ganymede ? sweet Ganymede?

[ROŠALIND faints. Oli. Many will swoon when they do look on

Cel. There is more in it: - Cousin - Ganymede!
Oli. Look, he recovers.

I would, I were at home.'
Cel. We'll lead


thither : I pray you,


you take him by the arm? Oli. Be of good cheer, youth :

You a man? You lack a man's heart.

Ros. I do so, I confess it. Ah, sir, a body would think this was well counterfeited: I pray you, tell your brother how well I counterfeited. — Heigh ho!

Oli. This was not counterfeit; there is too great testimony in your complexion, that it was a passion of earnest.

Ros. Counterfeit, I assure you.

Oli. Well then, take a good heart, and counterfeit to be a man.

Ros. So I do: but, i'faith I should have been a woman by right.

Cel. Come, you look paler and paler ; pray you, draw homewards: Good sir, go with us.

Oli. That will I, for I must bear answer back How you excuse my brother, Rosalind,

Roš. I shall devise something: But, I pray you, commend my counterfeiting to him:– Will you go?


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Enter TouchSTONE and AUDREY. Touch. We shall find a time, Audrey ; patience, gentle Audrey.

Aud. 'Faith, the priest was good enough, for all the old gentleman's saying:

Touch. A most wicked sir Oliver, Audrey, a most vile Mar-text. But, Audrey, there is a youth here in the forest lays claim to you.

Aud. Ay, I know who 'tis; he hath no interest in me in the world : here comes the man you mean.


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Touch. It is meat and drink to me to see a clown: By my troth, we that have good wits, have much to answer for ; we shall be flouting; we cannot hold.

Will. Good even, Audrey.
Aud. Good even, William.
Will. And good even to you, sir.

Touch. Good even, gentle friend: Cover thy head, cover thy head'; nay, pr’ythee, be covered.

Will. Five and twenty, sir.
Touch. A ripe age: Is thy name, William?
Will. William, sir.

Touch. A fair name: Wast born i’ the forest
Will. Ay, sir.

How old are you,

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