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Rom. Your plaintain-leaf is excellent for that.
Ben. For what, I pray theo?


For your broken shin. Ben. Why, Romeo, art thou mad?

Rom. Not mad, but bound more than a madman is: Shut up in prison, kept without my food, Whipp'd, and tormented, and-Good-e'en, good fellow. Serv. God gi' good e'en.-I pray, sir, can you read? Rom. Ay, mine own fortune in my misery. Serv. Perhaps you have learn'd it without book: But I pray, can you read anything you see? Rom. Ay. if I know the letters, and the language, Serv. Ye say honestly; Rest you merry! Rom. Stay, fellow: I can read.

[Reads. Signor Martino, and his wife and daughters; County Anselme, and his beauteous sisters; the lady widow of Vitruvio; Signor Placentio, and his lovely nieces; Mercutio, and his brother Valentine; Mine uncle Capulet, his wife, and daughters; My fair niece Rosaline; Livia; Signor Valentio, and his cousin Tybalt; Lucio, and the lively Helena.

A fair assembly; [gives back the note.] Whither should they come?

Serv. Up.

Rom. Whither to supper?

Serv. To our house.

Rom. Whose house?

Serv. My master's.

Rom. Indeed, I should have ask'd you that before. Serv. Now I'll tell you without asking: My master is the great rich Capulet; and if you be not of the house of Montagues, I pray, come and crush a cup of wine. Rest you merry.

Ben. At this same ancient feast of Capulet's Sups the fair Rosaline, whom thou so lov'st; With all the admired beauties of Verona:

Go thither and, with unattainted eye,


Compare her face with some that I shall show,
And I will make thee think thy swan a crow.
Rom. When the devout religion of mine eye
Maintains such falsehood, then turn tears to fires!
And these,-who, often drown'd, could never die,-
Transparent heretics, be burnt for liars!

One fairer than my love! the all-seeing sun
Ne'er saw her match, since first the world begun.
Ben. Tut! you saw her fair, none else being by,
Herself pois'd with herself in either eye :
But in that crystal scales," let there be weigh'd
Your lady's love against some other maid
That I will show you, shining at this feast,
And she shall scant show well, that now shows best.
Rom. I'll go along, no such sight to be shown,
But to rejoice in splendour of mine own. [Exeunt.

SCENE III.—A Room in Capulet's House.


La. Cap. Nurse, where 's my daughter? call her forth to me.

Nurse. Now by my maiden-head,-at twelve year


I bade her come.-What, lamb! what, lady-bird!— God forbid !-where 's this girl?—what, Juliet!

Jul. How now, who calls?



What is your will?



Your mother.

Madam, I am here.

La. Cap. This is the matter:-Nurse, give leave

We must talk in secret.-Nurse, come back again;

a Scales-used as a singular noun.

I have remember'd me, thou shalt hear our counsel.
Thou know'st, my daughter 's of a pretty age.

Nurse. 'Faith, I can tell her age unto an hour.
La. Cap. She's not fourteen.


I'll lay fourteen of my teeth, And yet to my teen be it spoken, I have but four,She is not fourteen.-How long is it now

To Lammas-tide?

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La. Cap.
A fortnight, and odd days.
Nurse. Even or odd, of all days in the year,
Come Lammas-eve at night, shall she be fourteen.
Susan and she,-God rest all Christian souls!—
Were of an age.-Well, Susan is with God;
She was too good for me: But, as I said,
On Lammas-eve at night shall she be fourteen
That shall she, marry; I remember it well.
"T is since the earthquake now eleven years;
And she was wean'd,-I never shall forget it,-
Of all the days of the year, upon that day:
For I had then laid wormwood to my dug,
Sitting in the sun under the dove-house wall,
My lord and you were then at Mantua :-
Nay, I do bear a brain : b-but, as I said,
When it did taste the wormwood on the nipple
Of my dug, and felt it bitter, pretty fool!
To see it tetchy, and fall out with the dug.

Shake, quoth the dove-house: 't was no need, I trow,
To bid me trudge.

And since that time it is eleven years:

For then she could stand alone; nay, by the rood,
She could have run and waddled all about.
For even the day before, she broke her brow:
And then my husband-God be with his soul!
'A was a merry man!-took up the child:
Yea, quoth he, dost thou fall upon thy face?

a Teen-sorrow.

b Bear a brain-have a memory-a common expression.

Thou wilt fall backward, when thou hast more wit;
Wilt thou not, Jule? and, by my holy dam,
The pretty wretch left crying, and said-Ay:
To see now, how a jest shall come about!
I warrant, an I should live a thousand years,

I never should forget it; Wilt thou not, Jule? quoth he:
And, pretty fool, it stinted, and said—Ay.

La. Cap. Enough of this; I pray thee, hold thy peace. Nurse. Yes, madam; yet I cannot choose but laugh, To think it should leave crying, and say-Ay: And yet, I warrant, it had upon its brow A bump as big as a young cockrel's stone; A parlous knock; and it cried bitterly. Yea, quoth my husband, fall'st upon thy face? Thou wilt fall backward, when thou com'st to age; Wilt thou not, Jule? it stinted, and said—Ay.


Jul. And stint thou too, I pray thee, nurse, say I. Nurse. Peace, I have done. God mark thee to his grace!

Thou wast the prettiest babe that e'er I nurs'd:
An I might live to see thee married once,

I have my wish.

La. Cap. Marry, that marry is the very theme I came to talk of:-Tell me, daughter Juliet, How stands your disposition to be married?

Jul. It is an honour that I dream not of.


Nurse. An honour! were not I thine only nurse, say, thou hadst suck'd wisdom from thy teat. La. Cap. Well, think of marriage now; younger than you,

Here in Verona, ladies of esteem,

Are made already mothers: by my count,

I was a mother much upon these years

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That you are now a maid. Thus, then, in brief;—
The valiant Paris seeks you for his love.

a It stinted-it stopped.

b Parlous-a corruption of the word perilous.

Nurse. A man, young lady! lady, such a man, As all the world-Why, he's a man of wax.

La. Cap. Verona's summer hath not such a flower.
Nurse. Nay, he's a flower; in faith, a very flower.
La. Cap. What say you? can you love the gentle-

This night you shall behold him at our feast:
Read o'er the volume of young Paris' face,
And find delight writ there with beauty's pen;
Examine every several lineament,

And see how one another lends content;
And what obscur'd in this fair volume lies,
Find written in the margin of his eyes.
This precious book of love, this unbound lover,
To beautify him, only lacks a cover:

The fish lives in the sea; and 't is much pride,
For fair without the fair within to hide :
That book in many's eyes doth share the glory,
That in gold clasps locks in the golden story;
So shall you share all that he doth possess,
By having him, making yourself no less.

Nurse. No less? nay, bigger; women grow by men.
La. Cap. Speak briefly, can you like of Paris' love?
Jul. I'll look to like, if looking liking move:

But no more deep will I endart mine eye,
Than your consent gives strength to make it fly.

Enter a Servant.

Serv. Madain, the guests are come, supper served up, you called, iny young lady asked for, the nurse cursed in the pantry, and everything in extremity. I must hence to wait; I beseech you, follow straight.

La. Cap. We follow thee.-Juliet, the county stays. Nurse. Go, girl, seek happy nights to happy days.


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