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LOVE'S LABOUR'S LOST.
SCENE I. Navarre. A purk, with a palace in it.
Enter the King, Biron, Longaville, and Dumain
LET fame, that all hunt after in their lives,
That honour, which shall bate his scythe's keen edge,
Therefore, brave conquerors !-for so you are,
And the huge army of the world's desires,-
You three, Birón, Dumain, and Longaville,
My fellow-scholars, and to keep those statutes,
Your oaths are past, and now subscribe your names;
If you are arm'd to do, as sworn to do,
Biron. I can but say their protestation over,
King. Your oath is pass'd to pass away from these. Biron. Let me say no, my liege, an if you please; I only swore, to study with your grace,
And stay here in your court for three years' space. Long. You swore to that, Biron, and to the rest. Biron. By yea and nay, sir, then I swore in
What is the end of study? let me know.
King. Why, that to know, which else we should
Biron. Things hid and barr'd, you mean, from common sense;
King. Ay, that is study's god-like recompense. Biron. Come on then, I will swear to study so, To know the thing I am forbid to know:
As thus To study where I well may dine,
When I to feast expressly am forbid;
Study knows that, which yet it doth not know:
King. These be the stops that hinder study quite, And train our intellects to vain delight.
Biron. Why, all delights are vain; but that most vain,
Which, with pain purchas'd, doth inherit pain:
To seek the light of truth; while truth the while Doth falsely blind the eyesight of his look:
Light, seeking light, doth light of light beguile : So, ere you find where light in darkness lies, Your light grows dark by losing of your eyes. Study me how to please the eye indeed,
By fixing it upon a fairer eye;
Who dazzling so, that eye shall be his heed,
Study is like the heaven's glorious sun,
That will not be deep-search'd with saucy looks; Small have continual plodders ever won,
Save base authority from others' books.
Have no more profit of their shining nights,
* Dishonestly, treacherously,
Too much to know, is, to know nought but fame; And every godfather can give a name.
King. How well he's read, to reason against reading!
Dum. Proceeded well, to stop all good proceeding!
Long. He weeds the corn, and still lets grow the weeding.
Biron. The spring is near, when green geese are a breeding.
Dum. How follows that?
Something then in rhyme.
Dum. In reason nothing.
Long. Biron is like an envious sneaping frost,
Before the birds have any cause to sing?
Why should I joy in an abortive birth?
At Christmas I no more desire a rose
Than wish a snow in May's new-fangled showst;
Climb o'er the house to unlock the little gate.
King. Well, sit you out: go home, Birón; adieu! Biron. No, my good lord; I have sworn to stay
And, though I have for barbarism spoke more,
Than for that angel knowledge you can say,
Yet confident I'll keep what I have swore,
And bide the penance of each three years' day. Give me the paper, let me read the same; And to the strict'st decrees I'll write my name. King. How well this yielding rescues thee from shame!
Biron. [Reads.] Item, That no woman shall come within a mile of my court.
And bath this been proclaim'd?
+ Games, sports.