William Shakespeare's Love's Labour's Lost in the complete original text.
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Love's Labour's Lost

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Act V. Scene I.

Act V. Scene I.—The KING OF

and DULL.

Hol. Satis quod sufficit.
Nath. I praise God for you, sir: your reasons
at dinner have been sharp and sententious;
pleasant without scurrility, witty without affec-
tion, audacious without impudency, learned
without opinion, and strange without heresy. I
did converse this quondam day with a com-
panion of the king's, who is intituled, nominated,
or called, Don Adriano de Armado.
Hol. Novi hominem tanquam te: his humour
is lofty, his discourse peremptory, his tongue
filed, his eye ambitious, his gait majestical, and
his general behaviour vain, ridiculous, and thra-
sonical. He is too picked, too spruce, too affected,
too odd, as it were, too peregrinate, as I may
call it.
Nath. A most singular and choice epithet.
[Draws out his table-book.
Hol. He draweth out the thread of his verbo-
sity finer than the staple of his argument. I
abhor such fanatical phantasimes, such insoci-
able and point-devise companions; such rackers
of orthography, as to speak dout, fine, when he
should say, doubt; det, when he should pro-
nounce, debt,—d, e, b, t, not d, e, t: he clepeth a
calf.cauf; half.hauf; neighbour vocatur nebour,
neigh abbreviated ne. This is abhominable,
which he would call abominable,—it insinuateth
me of insanie: anne intelligis, domine? To
make frantic, lunatic.
Nath. Laus Deo bone intelligo.
Hol. Bone? hone, for bene: Priscian a little
scratched; ' twill serve.

Nath. Videsne quis venit?
Hol. Video, et gaudeo.
Arm. [To MOTH.] Chirrah!
Hol. Quare Chirrah, not sirrah?
Arm. Men of peace, well encountered.
Hol. Most military sir, salutation.
Moth. [Aside to COSTARD.] They have been
at a great feast of languages, and stolen the
Cost. O! they have lived long on the alms-
basket of words. I marvel thy master hath not
eaten thee for a word; for thou art not so long
by the head as honorificabilitudinitatibus: thou
art easier swallowed than a flap-dragon.
Moth. Peace! the peal begins.
Arm. [To HOLOFERNES.] Monsieur, are you
not lettered?
Moth. Yes, yes; he teaches boys the horn-
book. What is a, b, spelt backward, with the
horn on his head?
Hol. Ba, pueritia, with a horn added.
Moth. Ba! most silly sheep with a horn. You
hear his learning.
Hol. Quis, quis, thou consonant?
Moth. The third of the five vowels, if you
repeat them; or the fifth, if I.
Hol. I will repeat them,—a, e, i,—
Moth. The sheep; the other two concludes
it,—o, u.
Arm. Now, by the salt wave of the Mediter-
raneum, a sweet touch, a quick venew of wit!
snip, snap, quick and home! it rejoiceth my
intellect: true wit!
Moth. Offered by a child to an old man;
which is wit-old.
Hol. What is the figure? what is the figure?
Moth. Horns.
Hol. Thou disputes! like an infant; go, whip
thy gig.
Moth. Lend me your horn to make one, and
I will whip about your infamy circum circa. A
gig of a cuckold's horn.
Cost. An I had but one penny in the world,
thou shouldst have it to buy gingerbread. Hold,
there is the very remuneration I had of thy
master, thou halfpenny purse of wit, thou pigeon-
egg of discretion. O! an the heavens were so
pleased that thou wert but my bastard, what a
joyful father wouldst thou make me. Go to;
thou hast it ad dunghill, at the fingers' ends, as
they say.
Hol. O! I smell false Latin; dunghill for
Arm. Arts-man, præambula: we will be
singled from the barbarous. Do you not educate
youth at the charge-house on the top of the
Hol. Or mons, the hill.
Arm. At your sweet pleasure, for the moun-
Hol. I do, sans question.
Arm. Sir, it is the king's most sweet pleasure
and affection to congratulate the princess at her
pavilion in the posteriors of this day, which the
rude multitude call the afternoon.
Hol. The posterior of the day, most gene-
rous sir, is liable, congruent, and measurable
for the afternoon: the word is well culled,
chose, sweet and apt, I do assure you, sir; I do
Arm. Sir, the king is a noble gentleman, and
my familiar, I do assure ye, very good friend.
For what is inward between us, let it pass: I do
beseech thee, remember thy curtsy; I beseech
thee, apparel thy head: and among other im-
portunate and most serious designs, and of great
import indeed, too, but let that pass: for I must
tell thee, it will please his Grace, by the world,
sometime to lean upon my poor shoulder, and
with his royal finger, thus dally with my excre-
ment, with my mustachio; but, sweet heart, let
that pass. By the world, I recount no fable:
some certain special honours it pleaseth his
greatness to impart to Armado, a soldier, a man
of travel, that hath seen the world: but let that
pass. The very all of all is, but, sweet heart, I do
implore secrecy, that the king would have me
present the princess, sweet chuck, with some
delightful ostentation, or show, or pageant, or
antick, or fire-work. Now, understanding that
the curate and your sweet self are good at such
eruptions and sudden breaking out of mirth, as
it were, I have acquainted you withal, to the end
to crave your assistance.
Hol. Sir, you shall present before her the
Nine Worthies. Sir Nathaniel, as concerning
some entertainment of time, some show in the
posterior of this day, to be rendered by our
assistance, at the king's command, and this most
gallant, illustrate, and learned gentleman; be
fore the princess, I say, none so fit as to present
the Nine Worthies.
Nath. Where will you find men worthy
enough to present them?
Hol. Joshua, yourself; myself, or this gallant
gentleman, Judas Maxscabæus; this swain, be-
cause of his great limb, or joint, shall pass
Pompey the Great; the page, Hercules,—
Arm. Pardon, sir; error: he is not quantity
enough for that Worthy's thumb: he is not so
big as the end of his club.
Hol. Shall I have audience? he shall present
Hercules in minority: his enter and exit shall be
strangling a snake; and I will have an apology
for that purpose.
Moth. An excellent device! so, if any of
the audience hiss, you may cry, 'Well done,
Hercules! now thou crushest the snake!' that is
the way to make an offence gracious, though few
have the grace to do it.
Arm. For the rest of the Worthies?—
Hol. I will play three myself.
Moth. Thrice-worthy gentleman!
Arm. Shall I tell you a thing?
Hol. We attend.
Arm. We will have, if this fadge not, an
antick. I beseech you, follow.
Hol. Via, goodman Dull! thou hast spoken
no word all this while.
Dull. Nor understood none neither, sir.
Hol. Allons! we will employ thee.
Dull. I'll make one in a dance, or so; or I
will play the tabor to the Worthies, and let them
dance the hay.
Hol. Most dull, honest Dull, to our sport,
away! [Exeunt.
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