ACT 4, SCENE 2: Athens. QUINCE'S house.

Enter QUINCE, FLUTE, SNOUT, and STARVELING.

QUINCE: Have you sent to Bottom's house? is he
come home yet?

STARVELING: He cannot be heard of. Out of doubt he
is transported.

FLUTE: If he come not, then the play is marred: it                                       [5]
goes not forward, doth it?

QUINCE: It is not possible: you have not a man in all
Athens able to discharge Pyramus but he.

FLUTE: No, he hath simply the best wit of any handi-
craft man in Athens.                                                                                 [10]

QUINCE: Yea and the best person too; and he is a very
paramour for a sweet voice.

FLUTE: You must say 'paragon:' a paramour is, God
bless us, a thing of naught.

Enter SNUG.

SNUG: Masters, the duke is coming from the temple,                                 [15]
and there is two or three lords and ladies more married:
if our sport had gone forward, we had all been made
men.

FLUTE: O sweet bully Bottom! Thus hath he lost
sixpence a day during his life; he could not have                               [20]
'scaped sixpence a day: an the duke had not given him
sixpence a day for playing Pyramus, I'll be hanged;
he would have deserved it: sixpence a day in Pyramus,
or nothing.

Enter BOTTOM.

BOTTOM: Where are these lads? where are these                                        [25]
hearts?

QUINCE: Bottom! O most courageous day! O most
happy hour!

BOTTOM: Masters, I am to discourse wonders: but ask
me not what; for if I tell you, I am no true Athenian.                       [30]
I will tell you every thing, right as it fell out.

QUINCE: Let us hear, sweet Bottom.

BOTTOM: Not a word of me. All that I will tell you
is, that the duke hath dined. Get your apparel together,
good strings to your beards, new ribbons to your                               [35]
pumps; meet presently at the palace; every man look
o'er his part; for the short and the long is, our play is
preferred. In any case, let Thisby have clean linen;
and let not him that plays the lion pare his nails, for
they shall hang out for the lion's claws. And, most                          [40]
dear actors, eat no onions nor garlic, for we are to utter
sweet breath; and I do not doubt but to hear them say,
it is a sweet comedy. No more words: away!
go, away!

[Exeunt.]


Go to the next scene.
Go to the previous scene.
Return to the list of scenes