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Beat. I cry you mercy, Uncle : by your

Grace's pardon.

[Exit Beatrice. Pedro. By my troth, a pleasant-spirited Lady.

Leon. There's little of the melancholy element in her, my Lord; fhe is never fad but when she sleeps, and not ever sad then ; (7) for I have heard my daughter fay, the hath often dream'd of an happiness, and wak'd her felf with laughing.'

Pedro. She cannot endure to hear tell of a hufband.

Leor. O, by no means, the mocks all her wooers out of suit.

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.

Pedró. Count Claudio, when mean you to go to charch?

Claud. To morrow, my Lord ; time goes on crutches, 'till love have all his rites.

Leon. Not 'till Monday, my dear fon, which is hence a just seven-night, and a time too brief too, to have all things answer my mind.

Pedro. Come, you shake the head at fo long a breathîng; but, I warrant thee, Claudio, the time shall 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 affe&tion 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 such affistance as I Thall give you direction.

Leon. My Lord, I am for you, though it cost me ten nights watchings.

(7) For I have heard my daughter say, She bath often dream'd of unhappiness, and wak'd her self with laughing.) Tho' all the Impreslions agree in this Reading, surely, 'tis absolutely repugnant to what Leonato intends to say, which is this; " trice is never fad, but when he sleeps ; and not ever fad

" then; for the hath often dream'd of something merry, (an d

happiness, as the Poet phrases it,) and wak'd herself witli
laughing”,
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Cland.

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Claud. And I, my Lord.
Pedro. And you too, gentle Hero?

Hero. I will do any modeft office, my Lord, to help my

Cousin to a good husband. . Pedro. And Benedick is not the unhopefullest husband that I know : thus far I can praise him, he is of a noble strain, of approv'd-valour, and confirm'd honesty. I will teach you how to humour your Coufin, that fhe Shall fall in love with Benedick; and I, with your two helps, will fo practise on Benedick, that in despight of his quick wit, and his queasie tomach, he shall fall in love with Beatrice. If we can do this, Cupid is no longer an archer, his glory shall be ours, for we are the only Love-Gods; go in with me, and I will tell

[Exeunt.

you my drift.

SCEN E changes to another Apartment in

Leonato's House.

.

Enter Don John and Borachio.
John. TT is fo, the Count Claudio fhall marry the

Bora. Yea, my Lord, but I can cross it.

John. Any bar, any cross, any impediment will be medicinable to me; I am fick in displeasure to him; and whatsoever comes athwart his affection, ranges evenly with mine. How canst thou cross this marriage ?

Bora. Not honestly, my Lord, but so covertly that no dishonesty shall appear in me.

John, Shew me briefly how.

Bora. I think, I told your lordship a year since, how much I am in the favour of Margaret, the waitinggentlewoman to Hero.

John. I remember.

Bora. I can, at any unseasonable instant of the night, appoint her to look out at her Lady's chamber-win

dow.

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John. What life is in That, to be the death of this. marriage ?

Bora. The poison of That lyes 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, (whose estimation do you mightily hold up) to a contaminated Stale, such a one as Hero. John. What proof thall I make of That ?

Bora. Proof enough to misuse the Prince, to vex: Claudio, to undo Hero, and kill Leonato ; look you for any other iffue ? John. Only to despite them, I will endeavour any (8) Bora. Go then find me a meet hour, to draw Don

Pedro,

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(6) Bora. Go then, find me a mess how to draw on Pedro and the Count Claudio, alone ; tell them that you know Hero loves

offer them Instances, which shall bear no leso Likela bood than to see me at ber Chamber-window; hear me call Margaret, Hero; bear Margaret term me CLAUD10; and bring them to get this the very night before the intended Wide

ding.) Thus the whole Stream of the Editions from the firft Quario downwards. I am oblig'd here to give a short Account of the Plot depending, that the Emendation I have made may appear the more clear and unquestionable. The Business fands thus: Claudio, . a. Favourite of the Arragon Prince, is, by his Intercessions with her Father, to be married to fair Hero 3 Don John, Natural Brother of the Prince, and a Hater of Clasa dio, is in his Spleen zealous to disappoint the March. Borashio, a rascally Dependant on Don John, offers his Aflittance; and engages to break off the Marriage by this Stratagen. “ Tell the Prince and Claudio (says He) that Hero is in Love « with Me; they won't believe it; offer them Proofs, as that

they shall fee me converse with her in her Chamber-window.

I am in the good Graces of her Waiting-woman Margaret ; " and I'll prevail with Margaret at a dead Hour of Night to

personate her Miftress Hero ; do you then bring the Prince " and -. Claudio to overhear our Discourse; and They fall have w the Torment to hear me address Margaret by the Name of « Hero, and her say sweet things to me by the Name of Classe 4 die." This is the Substance of Baracbio's Device to make

Hero

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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 sem. blance of a maid,) that you have discover'd thus; they will hardly believe this without tryal : offer them in. stances, which thall bear no less likelihood than to fee me at her chamber-window; hear me call Margaret, Hero; hear Margaret term me Borachio; and bring them to see 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 shall appear such seeming truths of Hero's diiloyalty, that jealoufie fhall be call'a affurance, and all the preparation overthrown.

John. Grow this to what adverse issue it can, I will put it in practice: be cunning in the working this, and thy fee is a thousand ducats.

Bora. Be thou conftant in the accusation, and my cunning shall not shame me. John. I will presently go learn their day of marriage.

[Excunt. SCENE changes to Leonato's Orchard.

Enter Benedick, and a Boy. Bene.

Boy. Signior. Hero fufpe&ed of Disloyalty, and to break off her Match with Claudio. But, in the Name of common Sense, could it displease Clandio to hear his Miftress making use of his Name tenderly? If he saw another Man with her, and heard her call him Claudio, he might reasonably think her betray'd, but not have the same Reason to accuse her of Difloyalty. Belides, how could her paming Claudio make the Prince and Claudio believe that she lov'd Borachio, as he defires Don John to infinuate to them that she did ? The Circumstances weigh'd, there is no Doubt but the Passage ought to be reform'd, as I have settled in the Text.

hear me call Margaret, Hero 3- hear Margaret term nie BORACHIO,

Bene,

OY,

Bo

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Bene. In my chamber window lies a book, bring it hither to me in the orchard. Boy. I am here already, Sir.

[Exit Boy. Bene. I know that, but I would have thee hence, and here again. I do much wonder, that one man, seeing how much another man is a fool, when he dedicates his behaviours to love, will, after he hath laught at such shallow follies in others, become the argument of his own scorn, by falling in love! and such a man is Claudio. I have known, when there was no mufick with him but the drum and the fife; and now had he rather hear the taber and the pipe ; I have known, when he would have walk'd ten mile a-foot, to see a good ar. mour; and now will he lye ten nights awake, carving the fashion of a new doublet. He was wont to speak plain, and to the purpose, like an honest man and a sol.. dier; and now is he turn’d orthographer, his words are a very fantastical banquet, juit so many strange dishes. May I be so converted, and see with these eyes? I can-: not tell ; I think not. I will not be sworn, but love may transform me to an oyster ; but I'll take my oath on it, 'till he have made an oyster of me, he shall never make me such a fool: one woman is fair, yet I am well; : another is wise, yet I am well; another virtuous, yet I am well. But 'till all graces be in one woman, one woman shall not come in my grace. . Rich she shall be, that's certain ; wise, or I'll none; virtuous, or I'll never cheapen her : fair, or I'll never look on her ; mild, or come not near me, noble, or not I for an angel; of good discourse, an excellent mufician, and her hair shall be of what colour it please God. Ha! the Prince and Monsieur Love! I will hide me in the arbour.

[Withdraws, Enter Don Pedro, Leonato, Claudio, and Balthazar. Pedro. Come, shall we hear this musick ?

Claud. Yea, my good lord; how still the evening is, As hush'd on purpose to grace harmony !

Pedro. See you where Benedick hath'hid himself?
Claud. O very well, my lord ; the mufick ended,

We'll

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