Speeches (Lines) for Hippolyta
in "Midsummer Night's Dream"

Total: 14

# Act, Scene, Line
(Click to see in context)
Speech text



Theseus. Now, fair Hippolyta, our nuptial hour
Draws on apace; four happy days bring in
Another moon: but, O, methinks, how slow
This old moon wanes! she lingers my desires,
Like to a step-dame or a dowager
Long withering out a young man revenue.

Hippolyta. Four days will quickly steep themselves in night;
Four nights will quickly dream away the time;
And then the moon, like to a silver bow
New-bent in heaven, shall behold the night
Of our solemnities.



Theseus. Go, one of you, find out the forester;
For now our observation is perform'd;
And since we have the vaward of the day,
My love shall hear the music of my hounds.
Uncouple in the western valley; let them go:
Dispatch, I say, and find the forester.
[Exit an Attendant]
We will, fair queen, up to the mountain's top,
And mark the musical confusion
Of hounds and echo in conjunction.

Hippolyta. I was with Hercules and Cadmus once,
When in a wood of Crete they bay'd the bear
With hounds of Sparta: never did I hear
Such gallant chiding: for, besides the groves,
The skies, the fountains, every region near
Seem'd all one mutual cry: I never heard
So musical a discord, such sweet thunder.



(stage directions). [Enter THESEUS, HIPPOLYTA, PHILOSTRATE, Lords and]

Hippolyta. 'Tis strange my Theseus, that these
lovers speak of.



Theseus. More strange than true: I never may believe
These antique fables, nor these fairy toys.
Lovers and madmen have such seething brains,
Such shaping fantasies, that apprehend
More than cool reason ever comprehends.
The lunatic, the lover and the poet
Are of imagination all compact:
One sees more devils than vast hell can hold,
That is, the madman: the lover, all as frantic,
Sees Helen's beauty in a brow of Egypt:
The poet's eye, in fine frenzy rolling,
Doth glance from heaven to earth, from earth to heaven;
And as imagination bodies forth
The forms of things unknown, the poet's pen
Turns them to shapes and gives to airy nothing
A local habitation and a name.
Such tricks hath strong imagination,
That if it would but apprehend some joy,
It comprehends some bringer of that joy;
Or in the night, imagining some fear,
How easy is a bush supposed a bear!

Hippolyta. But all the story of the night told over,
And all their minds transfigured so together,
More witnesseth than fancy's images
And grows to something of great constancy;
But, howsoever, strange and admirable.



(stage directions). [Exit PHILOSTRATE]

Hippolyta. I love not to see wretchedness o'er charged
And duty in his service perishing.



Theseus. Why, gentle sweet, you shall see no such thing.

Hippolyta. He says they can do nothing in this kind.



Lysander. He hath rid his prologue like a rough colt; he knows
not the stop. A good moral, my lord: it is not
enough to speak, but to speak true.

Hippolyta. Indeed he hath played on his prologue like a child
on a recorder; a sound, but not in government.



Demetrius. No remedy, my lord, when walls are so wilful to hear
without warning.

Hippolyta. This is the silliest stuff that ever I heard.



Theseus. The best in this kind are but shadows; and the worst
are no worse, if imagination amend them.

Hippolyta. It must be your imagination then, and not theirs.



Demetrius. He dares not come there for the candle; for, you
see, it is already in snuff.

Hippolyta. I am aweary of this moon: would he would change!



Theseus. Well run, Thisbe.

Hippolyta. Well shone, Moon. Truly, the moon shines with a
good grace.



Theseus. This passion, and the death of a dear friend, would
go near to make a man look sad.

Hippolyta. Beshrew my heart, but I pity the man.



Theseus. With the help of a surgeon he might yet recover, and
prove an ass.

Hippolyta. How chance Moonshine is gone before Thisbe comes
back and finds her lover?



(stage directions). [Re-enter Thisbe]

Hippolyta. Methinks she should not use a long one for such a
Pyramus: I hope she will be brief.

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