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may we see, quoth he, how the world wags :
'Tis but an hour ago, since it was nine ;
And after an hour more, 'twill be eleven ;
And so, from hour to hour, we ripe and ripe,
And then, from hour to hour, we rot and rot,
And thereby hangs a tale. When I did hear
The motley fool thus moral on the time,
My lungs began to crow like chanticleer,
That fools should be so deep-contemplative;
And I did laugh, sans intermission,
An hour by his dial. - O noble fool!
A worthy fool! Motley's the only wear.
Duke S. What fool is this?
Jaq. O worthy fool! - One that hath been a
And says, if ladies be but young, and fair,
They have the gift to know it: and in his brain, -
Which is as dry as the remainder bisket
After a voyage,
he hath strange places cramm'd
With observation, the which he vents
In mangled forms: -O, that I were a fool !
I am ambitious for a motley coat.
Duke S. Thou shalt have one.
It is my only suit;
Provided, that you weed your better judgments
Of all opinion that grows rank in them,
That I am wise. I must have liberty
Withal, as large a charter as the wind,
To blow on whom I please; for so fools have:
And they that are most galled with my folly,
They most must laugh: And why, sir, must they so ?
The why is plain as way to parish church:
He, that a fool doth very wisely hit,
Doth very foolishly, although he smart,
Not to seem senseless of the bob: if not,
The wise man's folly is anatomiz'd
6 The fool was anciently dressed in a party-coloured coat.
Even by the squand'ring glances of the fool.
Invest me in my motley; give me leave
To speak my mind, and I will through and through
Cleanse the foul body of the infected world,
If they will patiently receive my medicine.
Duke S. Fye on thee! I can tell what thou wouldst
do. Jaq. What, for a counter, would I do, but good ? Dúke S. Most mischievous foul sin, in chiding
For thou thyself hast been a libertine.
Jaq. Why, who cries out on pride,
That can therein tax any private party?
Doth it not flow as hugely as the sea,
Till that the very very means do ebb?
What woman in the city do I name,
When that I say, The city-woman bears
The cost of princes on unworthy shoulders ?
Who can come in, and say, that I mean her,
When such a one as she, such is her neighbour ?
Or what is he of basest function,
says, his bravery? is not on my cost,
(Thinking that I mean him,) but therein suits
His folly to the mettle of my speech?
There then; How, what then? Let me see wherein
My tongue hath wrong'd him: if it do him right,
Then he hath wrong'd himself; if he be free,
Why then, my taxing like a wild goose flies,
Unclaim'd of any man. - But who comes here?
Enter ORLANDO, with his sword drawn.
Orl. Forbear, and eat no more.
Why, I have eat none yet.
Orl. Nor shalt not, till necessity be serv'd.
Jaq. Of what kind should this cock come of?
Duke S. Art thou thus bolden'd, man, by thy
Or else a rụde despiser of good manners,
That in civility thou seem'st so empty ?
Orl. You touch'd my vein at first; the thorny
Of bare distress hath ta'en from me the show
Of smooth civility: yet am I inland bred,
And know some nurture: But forbear, I say;
He dies, that touches any of this fruit,
Till I and my affairs are answered.
Jaq. An you will not be answered with reason,
I must die.
Duke S. What would you have? Your gentleness
shall force, More than
force move us to gentleness. Orl. I almost die for food, and let me have it. Duke S. Sit down and feed, and welcome to our
Orl. Speak you so gently? Pardon me, I pray
I thought, that all things had been savage here;
And therefore put I on the countenance
Of stern commandment: But whate'er you are,
That in this desert inaccessible,
Under the shade of melancholy boughs,
Lose and neglect the creeping hours of time;
If ever you have look'd on better days, -
If ever been where bells have knoll'd to church;
If ever sat at any good man's feast;
If ever from your eye-lids wip'd a tear;
And know what 'tis to pity, and be pitied ;
Let gentleness my strong enforcement be:
In the which hope, I blush, and hide my sword.
Duke S. True is it that we have seen better days;
And have with holy bell been knoll’d to church;
And sat at good men's feasts; and wip'd our eyes
Of drops that sacred pity hath engender'd:
And therefore sit you down in gentleness,
And take upon command what help we have,
That to your wanting may be ministred.
Orl. Then, but forbear your food a little while,
Whiles, like a doe, I go to find my fawn,
And give it food. There is an old poor man,
Who after me hath many a weary step
Limp'd in pure love; till he be first suffic'd, -
Oppress'd with two weak evils, age and hunger -
I will not touch a bit.
Go find him out, And we will nothing waste till you return. Orl. I thank ye; and be bless'd for your good comfort!
[Exit. Duke S. Thou seest, we are not all alone un
This wide and universal theatre
Presents more woeful pageants than the scene
Wherein we play in.
All the world's a stage,
And all the men and women merely players :
They have their exits, and their entrances;
And one man in his time plays many parts,
His acts being seven ages. At first, the infant,
Mewling and puking in the nurse's arms;
And then, the whining school-boy, with his satchel,
And shining morning face, creeping like snail
Unwillingly to school : And then, the lover;
Sighing like furnace, with a woeful ballad
Made to his mistress' eye-brow: Then, a soldier;
Full of strange oaths, and bearded like the pard,
Jealous in honour, sudden and quick in quarrel,
Seeking the bubble reputation
Even in the cannon's mouth : And then, the justice;
In fair round belly, with good capon lin’d,
With eyes severe, and beard of formal cut,
Full of wise saws and modern o instances,
And so he plays his part: The sixth age
Into the lean and slipper'd pantaloon ;
With spectacles on nose, and pouch on side ;
His youthful hose well sav'd, a world too wide
For his shrunk shank; and his big manly voice,
Turning again toward childish treble, pipes
And whistles in his sound: Last scene of all,
That ends this strange eventful history,
Is second childishness, and mere oblivion;
Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans every thing.
Re-enter ORLANDO, with ADAM.
Duke S. Welcome: Set down your venerable
And let him feed.
I thank you most for him.
Adam. So had you need;
I scarce can speak to thank
Duke S. Welcome, fall to : I will not trouble you
As yet, to question you
fortunes :Give us some musick; and, good cousin, sing.
Blow, blow, thou winter wind,
Thou art not so unkind
As man's ingratitude ;
Thy tooth is not so keen,
Because thou art not seen,
Although thy breath be rude.
Heigh, ho! sing, heigh, ho! unto the green holly;
Most friendship is feigning, most loving mere folly:
Then, heigh, ħo, the holly!
This life is most jolly.