Page images
PDF
EPUB

plucked over your head, and show the world what the bird hath done to her own nest.

Ros. O coz, coz, coz, my pretty little coz, that thou didst know how many fathom deep I am in love! But it cannot be sounded; my affection hath an unknown bottom, like the bay of Portugal.

Cel. Or rather, bottomless; that as fast as you pour affection in, it runs out.

Ros. No, that same wicked bastard of Venus, that was begot of thought, conceived of spleen, and born of madness; that blind rascally boy, that abuses every one's eyes, because his own are out, let him be judge, how deep. I am in love:-I'll tell thee, Aliena, I cannot be out of the sight of Orlando: I'll go find a shadow, and sigh till he come. Cel. And I'll sleep.

[Exeunt.

SCENE II

Another Part of the Forest.
Enter JAQUES and Lords, in the habit of Foresters.

Jaq. Which is he that killed the deer?
i Lord. Sir, it was I.

Jaq. Let's present him to the duke, like a Roman conqueror; and it would do well to set the deer's horns upon his head, for a branch of victory: - Have you no song, forester, for this purpose ?

2 Lord. Yes, sir.

Jaq. Sing it; ’tis no matter how it be in tune, so it make noise enough.

[ocr errors][merged small]

SONG.

bear this bur

1. What shall he have, that kill'd the deer?
2. His leather skin, and horns to wear.

1. Then sing him home:
Take thou no scorn, to wear the horn ;( The rest shall
It was a crest ere thou wast born. 7 den.

1. Thy father's father wore it;

2. And thy father bore it: All. The horn, the horn, the lusty horn,

Is not a thing to laugh at scorn. [Exeunt.

AL

SCENE III.

The Forest. .Enter. Rosalind and Celia. Ros. How say you now? Is it not past two o'clock? And here much Orlando!

Cel. I warrant you, with pure love, and troubled brain, he hath ta'en his bow and arrows, and is gone forth-to sleep: Look, who comes here.

Enter SILVIUS. ... Şil. My errand is to you, fair youth ;My gentle Phebe bid me give you this:

[Giving a letter. I know not the contents; but, as I guess, By the stern brow, and waspish action

9 The foregoing noisy scene was introduced only to fill up an interval, which is to represent two hours. This contraction of the time we might impute to poor Rosalind's impatience, but that a tew minutes after we find Orlando sending his excuse. I do not see that by any probable division of the Acts this absurdity can be, obviated. JOHNSON

I and here much Orlando !] Much! was frequently used to indicate disdain.

VIUS.

IVER.

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. Enter Oliver. 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.

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

in our author's time, frequently used to express a poor contemptible fellow.

6_ purlieus of this forest,] Purlieu, says Manwood's Treatise on the Forest Laws, c. xx. “ Is a certaine territorie of ground adjoyning unto the forest, meared and bounded with unmoveable marks, meeres, and boundaries: which territories of ground was also forest, and afterwards disaforested againe by the perambulations made for the severing of the new forest from the old.”

REED. i na napkin,] i. e, handkerchief.

Ros. I am: What must we understand by this?

Oli. Some of my shame; if you 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 catlike 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 him the most unnatural
That liv'd 'mongst men.
Oli.

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

. And he did render him--] i. e. describe him....

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 hurtlinge
From qiliserable slumber I awak'd.

Cel. Are you his brother?
Ros. ,

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

him?
Oli. 'Twas I; but 'tis not I: I do not shame
To tell you what I was, since my conversion
So sweetly tastes, being the thing I am. '

Ros. But, for the bloody napkin ?-.
Oli.

. 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 arm
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 up 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. .

9 ----- in which hurtling-] To Turtle is to move with impetriosity and tumult.

« PreviousContinue »