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Leon. Did he break out into tears?
Mess. In great measure.

Leon. A kind overflow of kindness. There are no faces truer than those that are so washed: how much better is it to weep at joy, than to joy at weeping!

Beat. I pray you, is signior Montanto 7 rėturned from the wars, or no?

Mess. I know none of that name, lady: there was none such in the army of any sort. 8

Leon. What is he that you ask for, niece?
Hero. My cousin means signior Benedick of Padua.
Mess. 0, he is returned, and as pleasant 9 as ever he was.

Beat. He set up his bills 10 here in Messina, and challenged Cupid at the flight; and my uncle's fool, reading the challenge, subscribed for Cupid, and challenged him at the bird-bolt. – I pray you, how many hath he killed and eaten in these wars? But how many hath he killed? for, indeed, I promised to eat all of his killing.

Leon. Faith, niece, you tax signior Benedick too much; but he'll be meet with you, 11 I doubt it not.

Mess. He hath done good service, lady, in these wars.

Beat. You had musty victual, and he hath holp to eat it: he is a very valiant trencher-man; he hath an excellent stomach.

Mess. And a good soldier too, lady.
Beat. And a good soldier to 'a lady; but what is he to a lord ?

Mess. A lord to a lord, a man to a man; stuffed with all honourable virtues.

7 montanto, ein technischer Fechterausdruck, = das Vorrücken, das Ausliegen beim

Fechten, wird hier von Beatrice scherzhaft als ein Eigenname gefasst, mit welchem

sie den rauflustigen Benedick bezeichnet. 8) Vgl. oben Anm. 3. 9) pleasant = munter, scherzhaft. 10) to set up bills = einen öffentlichen Anschlag machen, Zettel anschlagen, wird auch

bei Sh.’s Zeitgenossen gebraucht von Preisfechtern, die in solcher Proclamation beliebige Gegner aufforderten, sich mit ihnen zu messen. - So hatte der eitle Benedick es mit Cupido selbst aufnehmen wollen, wer am besten mit dem Pfeil nach einem weiblichen Herzen schiessen könnte, aber statt des Cupido und in Cupido's Namen hatte nur Leonato's Hausnarr die IIerausforderung angenommen, jedoch nicht auf den langen und scharfen Pfeil, mit dem man geradeswegs auf ein entferntes Ziel schiesst (flight), sondern spöttisch nur auf den stumpfen und ungefährlichen Bolzen, mit dem man Vögel trifft, ohne sie zu verwunden (bird-bolt). Letztere Waffe kommt auch sonst als charakteristisch für den Narren vor; so auf dem Titelblatt eines alten Pamphlets, das Farmer citirt: A new post a mark exceeding necessary for all men's arrows: whether the great man's flight, the gallant's rover, the wise man's prick-shaft,

the poor man's but-shaft, or the fool's bird-bolt. 11) er wird quitt mit Euch werden, in Euren bösen Nachreden über ihn.

Beat. It is so, indeed: he is no less than a stuffed man ; 12 but for the stuffing, - Well, we are all mortal.

Leon. You must not, Sir, mistake my niece. There is a kind of merry war betwixt signior Benedick and her: they never meet, but there's a skirmish of wit between them.

Beat. Alas! he gets nothing by that. In our last conflict four of his five wits 13 went halting off, and now is the whole man governed with one; so that if he have wit enough to keep himself warm, 14 let him bear it for a difference between himself and his horse; for it is all the wealth that he hath left to be known a reasonable creature. – Who is his companion now? He hath every month a new sworn brother. 15

Mess. Is 't possible?

Beat. Very easily possible: he wears his faith but as the fashion of his hat; it ever changes with the next block. · Mess. I see, lady, the gentleman is not in your books. 16

Beat. No; an he were, I would burn my study. But, I pray you, who is his companion? Is there no young squarer 17 now, that will make a voyage with him to the devil ?

Mess. He is most in the company of the right noble Claudio.

Beat. O Lord! he will hang upon him like a disease: he is sooner caught than the pestilence, and the taker runs presently mad. God help the noble Claudio! if he have caught the Benedick, 18 it will cost him a thousand pound ere he be cured.

Mess. I will hold friends with you, lady.
Beat. Do, good friend.

12) Der Bote fasst stuffed = ausstaffirt, voll von Etwas, in uneigentlichem Sinne; Beatricu

fasst es in eigentlichem Sinne = wattirt, ausgestopft, gleichsam um stattlicher zu erscheinen, als er ist. - Farmer erinnert daran, dass stuffed man auch = Hahnrei,

stehe; indess ist der Witz auch ohne diese Beziehuug verständlich genug. 13) five wits = die fünf geistigen Kräfte, entsprechend den fünf Sinnen: als solche wur

den gerechnet common wit, imagination, fancy, estimation, memory. So in Sh.'s Sonnets (141) But my five wits nor my five senses can il Dissuade one foolish heart

from serving thee. 1) wit enough to keep himself warm ist sprichwörtlich für ein höchst bescheidenes, aber

doch genügendes Mass von Witz. Diesen Witz soll Benedick als ein Abzeichen tragen,

um sich von seinem Pferde zu unterscheiden, das sonst eben so klug ist wie er. 15) Er hat in jedem Monat einen Andern, dem er Brüderschaft zuschwört. - Diese zuge

schwomne Treue heisst gleich nachher his faith und er wechselt damit so oft, wie mit
dem Hut, dessen nächste oder folgende façon (block) die Mode gerade aufbringt.
to be in one's books = bei Jemandem gut angeschrieben sein, ein Ausdruck, der
verschieden gedeutet wird: vom Testamente, von den Büchern des Wappenamts, von
den Musterrollen der Soldaten oder Lehpsleute, von den Notizbüchern, in die man
eintrag, was man nicht vergessen wollte. – Hier versteht Beatrice unter books die

Bücher, in denen man studirt. 17) squarer = Zänker, Händelsucher. 18) Der Artikel steht vor Benedick, als wäre es eine ansteckende Krankheit, welche den

Claudio befallen habe.

16)

Leon. You will never run mad, niece.
Beat. No, not till a hot January.

Mess. Don Pedro is approached.
Enter Don PedrO, John, 19 CLAUDIO, BENEDICK, BALTHAZAR, and others.

D. Pedro. Good signior Leonato, you are come 20 to meet your trouble: the fashion of the world is to avoid cost, and you encounter it.

Leon. Never came trouble to my house in the likeness of your grace; for trouble being gone, comfort should remain, but when you depart from me, sorrow abides, and happiness takes his leave.

D. Pedro. You embrace your charge 21 too willingly. I think, this is your daughter.

Leon. Her mother hath many times told me so.
Bene.. Were you in doubt, Sir, that you asked hier?
Leon. Signior Benedick, no; for then were you a child.

D. Pedro. You have it full, Benedick: we may guess by this what you are, being a man. — Truly, the lady fathers herself. 22 — Be happy, lady, for you are like an honourable father.

Bene. If signior Leonato be her father, she would not have his head on her shoulders for all Messina, as like him as she is.

Beat. I wonder that you will still be talking, signior Benedick: no body marks you.

Bene. What, my dear lady Disdain! are you yet living ?

Beat. Is it possible disdain should die, while she hath such meet food to feed it, as signior Benedick? Courtesy itself must convert to disdain, if you come in her presence. 23

Bene. Then is courtesy a turn-coat. But it is certain, I am loved of all ladies, only you excepted; and I would I could find in my heart that I had not a hard heart; for, truly, I love none.

Beat. A dear happiness to women: they would else have been troubled with a pernicious suitor. I thank God, and my cold blood, I am of your humour for that: I had rather hear my dog bark at a crow, than a man swear he loves me.

19) John the bastard ist die Bezeichnung in Q. und Fol. - Rowe setzte zuerst Don

John, ein Titel, welchen Sh. our dem Fürsten selbst zuerkennt, und der nur hie und da aus Höflichkeit, wenn es nicht ein Versehen des Dichters ist, ausnahms

weise dem Bastard beigelegt wird. 20) So die Fol.; die Q. are you come als Fragosatz. 21) your charge = die Last, die Ihr Euch aufladet. - Weniger plausibel als diese Er

klärung Johnson's ist die von Douce: the person committed to your care. 22) Das Fräulein giebt sich selbst einen Vater, verräth durch ihre Aehnlichkeit hinlänglich,

wer ihr Vater ist, nämlich Leonato. 23) courtesy, das zuerst sächlich gefasst war in itself, wird dann nachträglich personificirt

in her presence, nach Massgabe von disdain, das schon vorher weiblich personificirt und mit Beatrice identificirt war.

a is the sum os Leonato hath hortily prays so

Bene. God keep your ladyship still in that mind; so some gentleman or other shall scape a predestinate scratched face.

Beat. Scratching could not make it worse, an 't were such a face as yours were.

Bene. Well, you are a rare parrot-teacher.
Beat. A bird of my tongue is better than a beast of yours.

Bene. I would, my horse had the speed of your tongue, and so good a continuer. 24 But keep your way o' God's name, I have done.

Beat. You always end with a jade's trick: 25 I know you of old.

D. Pedro. This is the sum of all: 26 Leonato, – signior Claudio, and signior Benedick, - my dear friend Leonato hath invited you all. I tell him we shall stay here at the least a month, and he heartily prays some occasion may detain us longer: I dare swear he is no hypocrite, but prays from his heart.

Leon. If you swear, my lord, you shall not be forsworn. — Let me bid you welcome, my lord: being reconciled to the prince your brother, I owe you all duty.

John. I thank you: I am not of many words, but I thank you.
Leon. Please it your grace lead on?
D. Pedro. Your hand, Leonato: we will go together.

[Excunt all but BENEDICK and Claudio.
Claud. Benedick, didst thou note the daughter of signior Leonato ?
Bene. I noted her not; but I looked on her.
Claud. Is she not a modest young lady?

Bene. Do you question me, as an honest man should do, for my simple true judgment; or would you have me speak after my custom, as being a professed tyrant to their sex ? 27

Claud. No; I pray thee, speak in sober judgment.

Bene. Why, i' faith, methinks she is too low for a high praise, too brown for a fair 28 praise, and too little for a great praise: only this commendation I can afford her: that were she other than she is, she were unhandsome, and being no other but as she is, I do not like her.

Claud. Thou thinkest, I am in sport: I pray thee, tell me truly how thou lik'st her.

Bene. Would you buy her, that you inquire after her?

24) scil. and were 80 good a continuer = und hielte es so lange im Laufen aus, wie

Eure Zunge. 23) jade's trick = schlechter Witz, zugleich in Beziehung auf das Gleichniss vom Pferde,

das Benedick gebraucht hatte. Dasselbe Wortspiel hat Sh. in All 's well that

ends well (A. 4, Sc. 5). 26) Mit diesen Worten theilt Don Pedro den Inhalt des Gesprächs, das er unterdess leise

mit Leonato fortgesetzt hatte, seinen beiden Freunden mit. – This, was auf das

Folgende hinweist, hat die Fol., die Q. That. 37) als ein erklärter Wütherich gegen das weibliche Geschlecht, als ein erklärter Weiberfeind. 2) fair = schön, billig, und = blond, hell von Farbe, im Gegensatz zu brown = dun

kelfarbig, brünett.

Claud. Can the world buy such a jewel?

Bene. Yea, and a case to put it into. But speak you this with a sad brow, or do you play the flouting Jack, 29 to tell us Cupid is a good harefinder, and Vulcan a rare carpenter? Come, in what key shall a man take you, to go in the song? 30

Claud. In mine eye she is the sweetest lady that ever I looked on.

Bene. I can see yet without spectacles, and I see no such matter: there 's her cousin, an she were not possessed with a fury, exceeds her as much in beauty, as the first of May doth the last of December. But I hope, you have no intent to turn husband, have you?

Claud. I would scarce trust myself, though I had sworn the contrary, if Hero would be my wife.

Bene. Is 't come to this, il faith? Hath not the world one man, but he will wear his cap with suspicion? 31 Shall I never see a bachelor of threescore again? Go to, i' faith; an thou wilt needs thrust thy neck into a yoke, wear the print 32 of it, and sigh away Sundays. Look, Don Pedro is returned to seek you.

Re-enter Don PEDRO. 33 D. Pedro. What secret hath held you here, that you followed not to Leonato's?

Bene. I would your grace would constrain me to tell. . D. Pedro. I charge thee on thy allegiance.

Bene. You hear, Count Claudio : I can be secret as a dumb man, I would have you think so; but on my allegiance, – mark you this, on my allegiance: – He is in love. With who? – now that is your grace's part. 34 — Mark, how short his answer is: – with Hero, Leonato's short daughter.

29) a flouting Jack = ein spottender Hans, Einer, der die Andern in seinen Reden zum

Besten hat, indem er z. B. widersinnig behauptet, dass der blinde Cupido leicht Hasen attrappire, oder dass der nur als Gott der Schmiede bekannte Vulcan ein ausgezeichneter Zimmermann sei. - a sad brow = ein ernstes Aussehen, eine ernste

Miene. 30) key = Musikschlüssel: welche Tonart muss man wählen, um in Euren Gesang mit

31)

einzustimmen? muss man ernsthaft oder scherzhaft mit Euch reden? Soll es auf der Welt keinen Mann mehr geben, dessen Mütze nicht den Verdacht erregt, dass die Hörner des Hahnrei darunter stecken? – Diese Erklärung belegt Henderson mit einem Citat aus Painter's Palace of Pleasure: All they that wear horns be pardoned to wear their caps upon their heads. - Malone denkt bei cap an die Nachtmütze des Ehemanns, die gelegentlich ein Anderer aufsetzt, und citirt dazu

Othello (A. 2, Sc. 1) For I fear Cassio with my night-cap too. 32) print = die Spur, die der Druck des Joches dem Nacken, der es trägt, einprägt. 33) Die alten Ausgg. lassen mit Don Pedro zugleich John the bastard auftreten. 34) Das ist jetzt Eurer Hoheit Rolle, zu fragen, in wen Claudio verliebt sei? — Benedick

thut diese Frage im Namen Pedro's.

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