[Approaching the bower]
No, truly, Ursula, she is too disdainful;
I know her spirits are as coy and wild 
As haggerds of the rock.
URSULA: But are you sure
That Benedick loves Beatrice so entirely?
HERO: So says the prince and my new-trothed lord.
URSULA: And did they bid you tell her of it, madam? 
HERO: They did entreat me to acquaint her of it;
But I persuaded them, if they loved Benedick,
To wish him wrestle with affection,
And never to let Beatrice know of it.
URSULA: Why did you so? Doth not the gentleman 
Deserve as full as fortunate a bed
As ever Beatrice shall couch upon?
HERO: O god of love! I know he doth deserve
As much as may be yielded to a man:
But Nature never framed a woman's heart 
Of prouder stuff than that of Beatrice;
Disdain and scorn ride sparkling in her eyes,
Misprising what they look on, and her wit
Values itself so highly that to her
All matter else seems weak: she cannot love, 
Nor take no shape nor project of affection,
She is so self-endeared.
URSULA: Sure, I think so;
And therefore certainly it were not good
She knew his love, lest she make sport at it. 
HERO: Why, you speak truth. I never yet saw man,
How wise, how noble, young, how rarely featured,
But she would spell him backward: if fair-faced,
She would swear the gentleman should be her sister;
If black, why, Nature, drawing of an antique, 
Made a foul blot; if tall, a lance ill-headed;
If low, an agate very vilely cut;
If speaking, why, a vane blown with all winds;
If silent, why, a block moved with none.
So turns she every man the wrong side out 
And never gives to truth and virtue that
Which simpleness and merit purchaseth.
URSULA: Sure, sure, such carping is not commendable.
HERO: No, not to be so odd and from all fashions
As Beatrice is, cannot be commendable: 
But who dare tell her so? If I should speak,
She would mock me into air; O, she would laugh me
Out of myself, press me to death with wit.
Therefore let Benedick, like cover'd fire,
Consume away in sighs, waste inwardly: 
It were a better death than die with mocks,
Which is as bad as die with tickling.
URSULA: Yet tell her of it: hear what she will say.
HERO: No; rather I will go to Benedick
And counsel him to fight against his passion. 
And, truly, I'll devise some honest slanders
To stain my cousin with: one doth not know
How much an ill word may empoison liking.
URSULA: O, do not do your cousin such a wrong.
She cannot be so much without true judgment-- 
Having so swift and excellent a wit
As she is prized to have--as to refuse
So rare a gentleman as Signior Benedick.
HERO: He is the only man of Italy.
Always excepted my dear Claudio. 
URSULA: I pray you, be not angry with me, madam,
Speaking my fancy: Signior Benedick,
For shape, for bearing, argument and valour,
Goes foremost in report through Italy.
HERO: Indeed, he hath an excellent good name. 
URSULA: His excellence did earn it, ere he had it.
When are you married, madam?
HERO: Why, every day, to-morrow. Come, go in:
I'll show thee some attires, and have thy counsel
Which is the best to furnish me to-morrow. 
URSULA: She's limed, I warrant you: we have caught her, madam.
HERO: If it proves so, then loving goes by haps:
Some Cupid kills with arrows, some with traps.
[Exeunt HERO and URSULA]
BEATRICE: [Coming forward]
What fire is in mine ears? Can this be true? 
Stand I condemn'd for pride and scorn so much?
Contempt, farewell! and maiden pride, adieu!
No glory lives behind the back of such.
And, Benedick, love on; I will requite thee,
Taming my wild heart to thy loving hand: 
If thou dost love, my kindness shall incite thee
To bind our loves up in a holy band;
For others say thou dost deserve, and I
Believe it better than reportingly.