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one to the world but I, and I am fun-burn'd; I may fit in a corner, and cry heigh ho! for a hufbaud. Pedro. Lady Beatrice, I will get you one. of your Father's get
Beat. I would rather have one ting hath your Grace ne'er a brother like you? your Father got excellent Husbands, if a maid could come by them.
Pedro. Will you have me, Lady?
Beat. No, my Lord, unless I might have another for working days; your Grace is too coftly to wear every-day : but, I beseech your Grace, pardon me, I was bound to fpeak all mirth and no matter.
Pedro. Your filence most offends me, and to be merry best becomes you; for, out of question, you were born in a merry hour.
Beat. No, fure, my Lord, my mother cry'd; but then there was a star danc'd, and under that I was born. Coufins, God give you joy.
Leon. Niece, will you look to those things I told you of?
Beat. I cry you mercy, Uncle: by your Grace's pardon. [Exit Beatrice.
Pedro. By my troth, a pleafant-fpirited Lady. Leon. There's little of the melancholy element in her, my Lord; fhe is never fad but when fhe fleeps, and not ever fad then; for I have heard my daughter fay, the hath often dream'd of an unhappiness, and wak'd herself with laughing.
Pedro. She cannot endure to hear tell of a husband.
The hath often dream'd of unhappiness,] So all the editions; - but Mr. Theobald's alters it to, an happiness, having no conception that unhappiness meant any thing but misfortune, and that he thinks fhe could not laugh at. He had never heard that it fig
Leon. O, by no means, fhe mocks all her wooers out of fuit.
Pedro. She were an excellent wife for Benedick.
Leon. O Lord, my Lord, if they were but a week marry'd, they would talk themselves mad.
Pedro. Count Claudio, when mean you to go to church?
Claud. To-morrow, my Lord; time goes on crutches, 'till love have all its rites.
Leon. Not 'till Monday, my dear fon, which is hence a juft feven-night, and a time too brief too, to have all things anfwer my mind.
Pedro. Come, you shake the head at fo long a breathing; but, I warrant thee, Claudio, the time fhall not go dully by us. I will in the Interim undertake one of Hercules's labours, which is, to bring Signior Benedick and the Lady Beatrice into a mountain of affection the one with the other; I would fain have it a match, and I doubt not to fashion it, if you three will but minister fuch affiftance as I fhall give you direction.
Leon. My Lord, I am for you, though it coft me ten nights watchings.
Claud. And I, my Lord.
Pedro. And you too, gentle Hero?
Hero. I will do any modeft office, my Lord, to help my Coufin to a good husband.
Pedro. And Benedick is not the unhopefulleft husband that I know: thus far I can praise him, he is of a noble ftrain, of approv'd valour, and confirm'd honesty.
bring them, not to any more mostings of contention, but to a mooting or converfation of love,
3 To bring Benedick and Beatrice into a mountain of affection the one with the other.] A mountain of affection with one another,The reading is confirmed by the is a strange expreffion, yet I propofition with; a mountain know not well how to change it. with each other, or affection with Perhaps it was originally written, each other, cannot be used, but to bring Benedick and Beatrice a mooting with each other is prointo a mooting of affection; to per and regular.
I will teach you how to humour your Coufin, that the fhall fall in love with Benedick; and I, with your two helps, will fo practise on Benedick, that in defpight of his quick wit, and his queafy ftomach, he fhall fall in love with Beatrice. If we can do this, Cupid is no longer an archer, his glory fhall be ours for we are the only Love-Gods: go in with me, and I will tell you my drift. [Exeunt.
Changes to another Apartment in Leonato's Houfe.
Enter Don John and Borachio.
T is fo, the Count Claudio fhall marry the
Bora. Yea, my lord, but I can crofs it.
John. Any bar, any cross, any impediment will be medicinable to me; I am fick in difpleasure to him; and whatfoever comes athwart his affection, ranges evenly with mine. How canft thou cross this marriage?
Bora. Not honeftly, my Lord, but fo covertly that no difhonefty fhall appear in me.
John. Shew me briefly how.
Bora. I think, I told your lordship a year fince, how much I am in the favour of Margaret, the waitinggentlewoman to Hero.
John. I remember..
Bora. I can, at any unfeasonable inftant of the night, appoint her to look out at her lady's chamber window.
John. What life is in That, to be the death of this marriage?
Bora. The poifon of That lies in you to temper go you to the Prince your Brother, spare not to tell him, that he hath wrong'd his honour'in marrying the
renown'd Claudio (whofe eftimation do you mightily hold up) to a contaminated Stale, fuch a one as Hero.. John. What proof fhall I make of That?
Bora. Proof enough to misuse the Prince, to vex Claudio, to undo Hera, and kill Leonato; look you for any other iffue?
John. Only to defpight them, I will endeavour any thing.
+ Bora. Go then find me a meet hour, to draw Don Pedro,
4 Bora. Go then, find me a meet hour to draw on Pedro and the Count Claudio, alone; tell them that you know Hero loves Offer them Inflances, which shall bear no lfs Likelihood than to fee me at her Chamber. window; hear me call Margaret, Hero; hear Margaret term me CLAUDIO; and bring them to fee this the very night before the intended Wedding.] Thus the whole Stream of the Editions from the first Quarto downwards. I am obliged here to give a fhort Account of the Plot depending, that the Emendation I have made may appear the more clear and unqueftionable. The Bufinefs ftands thus: Claudio, a Favourite of the Arragon Prince, is, by his Interceffions with her Father, to be married to fair Hero; Don John, Natural Brother of the Prince, and a Hater of Claudio, is in his Spleen zealous to difappoint the Match. Berachie, a rafcally Dependant on Don John, offers his Affiftance, and engages to break off the Marriage by this Stratagem. "Tell "the Prince and Claudio (fays "He) that Hero is in Love with "Me; they won't believe it;
they fhall fee me converfe with her in her Chamber-window. "I am in the good Graces of "her Waiting-woman Marga
ret; and I'll prevail with "Margaret at a dead Hour of "Night to perfonate her Mif"trels Hero; do you then bring "the Prince and Claudio to over"hear our Difcourfe; and They "Thall have the Torment to hear addrefs Margaret by the "Name of Hero, and her fay fweet things to me by the "Name of Claudio. This is the Subftance of Barachio's Device to make Hero fufpected of Difloyalty, and to break off her Match with Claudio. But, in the name of common Senfe, could it displease Claudio to hear her Miftrefs making Ufe of his Name tenderly? If he faw another Man with her, and heard her call him Claudio, he might reafonably think her betrayed, but not have the fame Reafon to accufe her of Disloyalty. Befides, how could her naming Claudio make the Prince and Claud.o believe that She lov'd Borachio, as he defires Don John to infinuate to them that She did? The Circumftances,
Pedro, and the Count Claudio, alone; tell them, that you know, Hero loves me; intend a kind of zeal both to the Prince and Claudio, as in a love of your Brother's honour, who hath made this match; and his friend's reputation, who is thus like to be cozen'd with the femblance of a maid, that you have difcover'd thus. They will hardly believe this without trial. Offer them inftances, which fhall bear no lefs likelihood than to fee me at her chamber-window; hear me call Margaret, Hero; hear Margaret term me Borachio; and bring them to fee this, the very night before the intended Wedding; for in the mean time I will fo fashion the matter, that Hero fhall be abfent; and there fhall appear fuch feeming truth of Hero's difloyalty, that jealoufy fhall be call'd affurance, and all the preparation overthrown.
John. Grow this to what adverfe iffue it can, I will put it in practice: be cunning in working this, and thy fee is a thousand ducats.
Bora. Be thou conftant in the accufation, and my cunning fhall not fhame me.
John. I will prefently go learn their day of marriage.
Changes to Leonato's Orchard.
Enter Benedick, and a Boy.
Bene. In my chamber-window lies a book, bring it hither to me in the orchard.
cumftances weigh'd, there is no Doubt but the Paffage ought to be reformed, as I have fettled in the Text.
bear me call Margaret, Hero; hear Margaret term me Bo