[Enter DON PEDRO, CLAUDIO, BENEDICK, and LEONATO]
- Don Pedro. I do but stay till your marriage be consummate, and
then go I toward Arragon.
- Claudio. I'll bring you thither, my lord, if you'll
- Don Pedro. Nay, that would be as great a soil in the new gloss
of your marriage as to show a child his new coat
and forbid him to wear it. I will only be bold
with Benedick for his company; for, from the crown
of his head to the sole of his foot, he is all
mirth: he hath twice or thrice cut Cupid's
bow-string and the little hangman dare not shoot at
him; he hath a heart as sound as a bell and his
tongue is the clapper, for what his heart thinks his
- Benedick. Gallants, I am not as I have been.
- Leonato. So say I. methinks you are sadder.
- Claudio. I hope he be in love.
- Don Pedro. Hang him, truant! there's no true drop of blood in
him, to be truly touched with love: if he be sad,
he wants money.
- Benedick. I have the toothache.
- Claudio. You must hang it first, and draw it afterwards.
- Don Pedro. What! sigh for the toothache?
- Leonato. Where is but a humour or a worm.
- Benedick. Well, every one can master a grief but he that has
- Claudio. Yet say I, he is in love.
- Don Pedro. There is no appearance of fancy in him, unless it be
a fancy that he hath to strange disguises; as, to be
a Dutchman today, a Frenchman to-morrow, or in the
shape of two countries at once, as, a German from
the waist downward, all slops, and a Spaniard from
the hip upward, no doublet. Unless he have a fancy
to this foolery, as it appears he hath, he is no
fool for fancy, as you would have it appear he is.
- Claudio. If he be not in love with some woman, there is no
believing old signs: a' brushes his hat o'
mornings; what should that bode?
- Don Pedro. Hath any man seen him at the barber's?
- Claudio. No, but the barber's man hath been seen with him,
and the old ornament of his cheek hath already
- Leonato. Indeed, he looks younger than he did, by the loss of a beard.
- Don Pedro. Nay, a' rubs himself with civet: can you smell him
out by that?
- Claudio. That's as much as to say, the sweet youth's in love.
- Don Pedro. The greatest note of it is his melancholy.
- Claudio. And when was he wont to wash his face?
- Don Pedro. Yea, or to paint himself? for the which, I hear
what they say of him.
- Claudio. Nay, but his jesting spirit; which is now crept into
a lute-string and now governed by stops.
- Don Pedro. Indeed, that tells a heavy tale for him: conclude,
conclude he is in love.
- Claudio. Nay, but I know who loves him.
- Don Pedro. That would I know too: I warrant, one that knows him not.
- Claudio. Yes, and his ill conditions; and, in despite of
all, dies for him.
- Don Pedro. She shall be buried with her face upwards.
- Benedick. Yet is this no charm for the toothache. Old
signior, walk aside with me: I have studied eight
or nine wise words to speak to you, which these
hobby-horses must not hear.
[Exeunt BENEDICK and LEONATO]
- Don Pedro. For my life, to break with him about Beatrice.
- Claudio. 'Tis even so. Hero and Margaret have by this
played their parts with Beatrice; and then the two
bears will not bite one another when they meet.
[Enter DON JOHN]
- Don John. My lord and brother, God save you!
- Don Pedro. Good den, brother.
- Don John. If your leisure served, I would speak with you.
- Don John. If it please you: yet Count Claudio may hear; for
what I would speak of concerns him.
- Don Pedro. What's the matter?
- Don John. [To CLAUDIO] Means your lordship to be married
- Don Pedro. You know he does.
- Don John. I know not that, when he knows what I know.
- Claudio. If there be any impediment, I pray you discover it.
- Don John. You may think I love you not: let that appear
hereafter, and aim better at me by that I now will
manifest. For my brother, I think he holds you
well, and in dearness of heart hath holp to effect
your ensuing marriage;—surely suit ill spent and
labour ill bestowed.
- Don Pedro. Why, what's the matter?
- Don John. I came hither to tell you; and, circumstances
shortened, for she has been too long a talking of,
the lady is disloyal.
- Don Pedro. Even she; Leonato's Hero, your Hero, every man's Hero:
- Don John. The word is too good to paint out her wickedness; I
could say she were worse: think you of a worse
title, and I will fit her to it. Wonder not till
further warrant: go but with me to-night, you shall
see her chamber-window entered, even the night
before her wedding-day: if you love her then,
to-morrow wed her; but it would better fit your honour
to change your mind.
- Don Pedro. I will not think it.
- Don John. If you dare not trust that you see, confess not
that you know: if you will follow me, I will show
you enough; and when you have seen more and heard
more, proceed accordingly.
- Claudio. If I see any thing to-night why I should not marry
her to-morrow in the congregation, where I should
wed, there will I shame her.
- Don Pedro. And, as I wooed for thee to obtain her, I will join
with thee to disgrace her.
- Don John. I will disparage her no farther till you are my
witnesses: bear it coldly but till midnight, and
let the issue show itself.
- Don Pedro. O day untowardly turned!
- Claudio. O mischief strangely thwarting!
- Don John. O plague right well prevented! so will you say when
you have seen the sequel.