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That I shall think it a most plenteous crop
To glean the broken ears after the man
That the main harvest reaps : loose now and then
A scatter'd smile, and that I live upon.
Phebe. Know'st thou the youth that spoke to me ere

while ?
Silvius. Not very well, but I have met him oft;
And he hath bought the cottage, and the bounds,
That the old carlot once was master of.

Phebe. Think not I love him, though I ask for him ;
'Tis but a peevish boy :yet he talks well ;-
But what care I for words ? yet words do well,
When he that speaks them pleases those that hear.
It is a pretty youth :—not very pretty
But, sure, he's proud ; and yet his pride becomes him :
He 'll make a proper man: The best thing in him
Is his complexion ; and faster than his tongue
Did make offence, his eye did heal it up.
He is not tall; yet for his years he's tall :
His leg is but so so; and


'tis well : There was a pretty redness in his lip; A little riper and more lusty red Than that mix'd in his cheek; 'twas just the difference Betwixt the constant red, and mingled damask. There be some women, Silvius, had they mark'd him In parcels as I did, would have gone near To fall in love with him : but, for my part, I love him not, nor hate him not; and yet I have more cause to hate him than to love him : For what had he to do to chide at me ? He said, mine eyes were black, and my hair black; And, now I am remember'd, scorn'd at me: I marvel, why I answer'd not again ;

But that 's all one; omittance is no quittance.
I'll write to him a very taunting letter,
And thou shalt bear it; Wilt thou, Silvius ?
Silvius. Phebe, with all my

heart. Phebe.

I'll write it straight; The matter's in my head, and in my heart: I will be bitter with him, and passing short : Go with me, Silvius.


Rosalind. Break an hour's promise in love? He that will divide a minute into a thousand parts, and but a part of the thousandth part of a minute in the affairs of love, it may be said of him, that Cupid hath clapp'd him o' the shoulder, but I warrant him heart-whole.

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Rosalind. No, faith, die by attorney. The poor world is about six thousand years old, and in all this time there was not any man died in his own person, videlicet, in a love cause.

Troilus had his brains dashed out with a Grecian club; yet he did what he could to die before ; and he is one of the patterns of love. Leander, he would have lived many a fair year, though Hero had turned nun, if it had not been for a hot midsummer night : for, good youth, he went but forth to wash him in the Hellespont, and, being taken with the cramp, was drowned ; and the foolish chroniclers of that age found it was Hero of Sestos. But these are all lies; men have died from time to time, and worms have eaten them, but not for love.

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Rosalind. Ay, go your ways, go your ways ;—I knew what you would prove; my friends told me as much, and I thought no less that flattering tongue of yours won me :-'tis but one cast away, and so,-come, death.Two o'clock is the hour?

Orlando. Ay, sweet Rosalind.

Rosalind. By my troth, and in good earnest, and so God mend me, and by all pretty oaths that are not dangerous, if you break one jot of your promise, or come one minute behind your hour, I will think you the most pathetical break-promise, and the most hollow lover, and the most unworthy of her you call Rosalind, that may be chosen out of the gross band of the unfaithful : therefore beware my censure, and keep your promise.

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Rosalind. O coz, coz, coz, my pretty little coz, that thou didst know how many fathom deep I am in love ! But it cannot be sounded; my affection hath an unknown bottom, like the bay of Portugal.

Celia. Or rather, bottomless; that as fast as you pour affection in, it runs out.

Rosalind. No, that same wicked bastard of Venus, that was begot of thought, conceived of spleen, and born of madness; that blind rascally boy, that abuses every one's eyes, because his own are out, let him be judge, how deep I am in love :-I'll tell thee, Aliena, I cannot be out of the sight of Orlando; I'll go find a shadow, and sigh till he come.

Celia. And I 'll sleep.


Silvius. My errand is to you, fair youth :My gentle Phebe bid me give you this : [Giving a letter.

I know not the contents; but as I guess,
By the stern brow, and waspish action
Which she did use as she was writing of it,
It bears an angry tenour : pardon me,
I am but as a guiltless messenger.

Rosalind. Patience herself would startle at this letter,
And play the swaggerer ; bear this, bear all ;
She says I am not fair ; that I lack manners;
She calls me proud; and, that she could not love me
Were man as rare as phoenix: Od's my will !
Her love is not the hare that I do hunt;
Why writes she so to me?—Well, shepherd, well,
This is a letter of your own device.

Silvius. No, I protest, I know not the contents ;
Phebe did write it.

Rosalind. Come, come, you are a fool,
And turn'd into the extremity of love.
I saw her hand : she has a leathern hand,
A freestone-colour'd hand; I verily did think
That her old gloves were on, but 'twas her hands;
She has a huswife's hand; but that's no matter;

say, she never did invent this letter; This is a man's invention, and his hand.

Silvius. Sure, it is hers.

Rosalind. Why, 'tis a boisterous and cruel style,
A style for challengers: why, she defies me,
Like Turk to Christian : woman's gentle brain
Could not drop forth such giant-rude invention,
Such Ethiop words, blacker in their effect
Than in their countenance : -Will


hear the letter? Silvius. So please you, for I never heard it yet; Yet heard so much of Phebe’s cruelty.

Act V. SCENE II. Rosalind. O, I know where you are :-Nay, 'tis true; there was never any thing so sudden, but the fight of two rams, and Cæsar's thrasonical brag of—I came, saw, and overcame: For your brother and my sister no sooner met, but they looked; no sooner looked, but they loved ; no sooner loved, but they sighed; no sooner sighed, but they asked one another the reason; no sooner knew the reason, but they sought the remedy: and in these degrees have they made a pair of stairs to marriage, which they will climb incontinent, or else be incontinent before marriage: they are in the very wrath of love, and they will together; clubs cannot part them.



Rosalind. I will weary you no longer then with idle talking. Know of me then (for now I speak to some purpose) that I know you are a gentleman of good conceit: I speak not this, that you should bear a good opinion of my knowledge, insomuch I say I know you are; neither do I labour for a greater esteem, than may in some little measure draw a belief from you, to do yourself good, and not to grace me.

Believe then if you please, that I can do strange things; I have, since I was three years old, conversed with a Magician, most profound in his art, and yet not damnable. If you do love Rosalind so near the heart, as your gesture cries it out, when your brother marries Aliena, shall you marry her; I know into what straits of fortune she is driven; and it is not impossible to me, if it appear not inconvenient to you, to set her before your eyes to-morrow, human as she is, and without any danger.»

Orlando. Speakest thou in sober meanings ?


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