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Slow in pursuit, but match'd in mouth like bells,
Ege. My lord, this is my daughter here asleep,
The. No doubt, they rose up early to observe
Ege. It is, my lord.
Horns, and they wake. Shout within, they all start up.
Lyf. Pardon, my lord.
The. I pray you all, stand up:
Lyf. My lord, I shall reply amazedly,
from Athens, where we might Be without peril of th’ Athenian law.
Ege. Enough, enough, my lord, you have enough; I beg the law, the law upon his head:
They would have stoln away, they would, Demetrius,
Dem. My lord, fair Helen told me of their stealth,
The. Fair lovers, you are fortunately met:
[Exe. duke and lords.
Her. Methinks, I see these things with parted eye,
And I have found Demetrius, a jewel,
Dem. It seems to me,
Dem. Why then, we are awake; let's follow him; And, by the way, let us recount our dreams. [Exeunt.
[Bottom wakes. S CE N E III. Bot. When my cue comes, call me, and I will answer. My next is, most fair Pyramus — hey, ho! Peter Quince ! Flute, the bellows-mender! Snowt, the tinker! Starveling! god's my life! stol’n hence, and left me asleep! I have had a most rare vision. I had a dream past the wit of man to say what dream it was : man is but an ass, if he go about to expound this 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 the play before the duke: peradventure, to make it the more gracious, I shall sing it after death.
Athens. Enter Quince, Flute, Snowt, 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.
Flute. 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.
Flute. No, he hath simply the best wit of any handy-craft man in Athens.
Quin. Yea, and the best person too; and he is a very paramour for a sweet voice.
Flute. You must say, paragon; a paramour is, God bless us ! a thing of naught.
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.
Flute. O sweet bully Bottom! thus hath he lost fix-pence a-day, during his life; he could not have 'scap'd fix-pence a-day; an the duke had not given him fix-pence a-day for playing Pyramus, I'll be hang'd: he would have deserv’d it. Six-pence a-day in Pyramus, or nothing.
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 as it fell out.
Quin. Let us hear, fweet Bottom.
Bot. Not a word of me; all 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 preferred: 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 to hear them say, it is a sweet comedy. No more words; away, go away.
The. More strange than true. I never may believe
Hip. But all the story of the night told over,