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Is little Cupid's crafty arrow made,
Enter Beatrice, running towards the Arbour.
Urfu. The pleafant'ft angling is to fee the fish
Hero. Then go we near her, that her ear lofe nothing
Urfu. But are you fure,
That Benedick loves Beatrice fo intirely?
Hero. So fays the Prince, and my new-trothed lord.
Urfu. Why did you fo? doth not the Gentleman Deferve as full, as fortunate a bed,
As ever Beatrice fhall couch upon?
Hero. O God of love! I know, he doth deferve
Nor take no shape nor project of affection,
Urfu. Sure, I think fo;
And therefore certainly it were not good
Hero. Why, you speak truth. I never yet saw man, How wife, how noble, young, how rarely featur'd, But she would fpell him backward; if fair-fac'd, She'd fwear, the gentleman fhould be her fifter;
If black, why, Nature, drawing of an antick, Made a foul blot; if tall, a launce ill-headed; 3 If low, an Aglet very vilely cut;
If speaking, why, a vane blown with all winds;
Urfu. Sure, fure, fuch carping is not commendable.
2 If black, why, Nature, drawing of an antick,
Made a foul blot;-] The antick was a buffoon character in the old English farces, with a blacked face and a patch-work habit. What I would obferve from hence is, that the name of antick or antique, given to this character, fhews that the people had some traditional ideas of its being borrowed from the ancient mimes, who are thus defcribed by Apuleius, mimi centunculo, fuligine faciem obducti.
3 If low, an Agat very vilely cut ;] But why an agat, if low? For what likenefs between a little man and an agat? The ancients, indeed, ufed this stone to cut upon; but very exquifitely. I make no queftion but the poet wrote;
an Aglet very vilely cut;
An aglet was the tagg of thofe points, formerly fo much in fashion. Thefe taggs were either of gold, filver, or brafs, according to the quality of the wearer; and were commonly in the fhape of little images; or at least had a head cut at the extremity. The French call them aiguillettes. Mazeray, fpeaking of Henry IIId's forrow for the death of the princefs of Conti, fays,-portant meme fur fes aiguillettes de petites tetes de Mort. And as a tall man is before compar'd to a Launce ill-headed; fo, by the fame figure, a little Man is very aptly liken'd to an Aglet ill-cut.
As Beatrice is, cannot be commendable.
Úrfu. Yet tell her of it; hear what he will fay.
Urfu. O, do not do your Coufin fuch a wrong.
Hero. He is the only man of Italy, Always excepted my dear Claudio.
Urfu. I pray you, be not angry with me, Madam, Speaking my fancy; Signior Benedick,
For fhape, for bearing, argument and valour,
Hero. Indeed, he hath an excellent good name. Urfu. His excellence did earn it, ere he had it. When are you marry'd, Madam?
Hero. Why, every day; to morrow; come, go in, I'll fhew thee fome attires, and have thy counsel Which is the best to furnish me to morrow.
Urfu. She's lim'd, I warant you; we have caught her, Madam.
Hero. If it prove fo, then loving goes by haps; Some Cupids kill with arrows, Some with traps.
Beat. 4 What fire is in my ears? can this be true? Stand I condemn'd for Pride and Scorn fo much? Contempt, farewel! and maiden pride, adieu!
No glory lives behind the back of fuch.
Taming my wild heart to thy loving hand;
Enter Don Pedro, Claudio, Benedick and Leonato.
Pedro. I DO but ftay 'till your marriage be confummate, and then go I Arragon.
Claud. I'll bring you thither my lord, if you'll vouchfafe me.
Pedro. Nay, That would be as great a foil in the new glofs of your marriage, as to fhew a child his new coat and forbid him to wear it. I will only be bold with Benedick for his company; for, from the crown of his head to the foale of his foot, he is all mirth; he hath twice or thrice cut Cupid's bow-ftring, and the little hangman dare not fhoot at him; he hath a heart as found as a bell, and his tongue is the clapper; for what his heart thinks, his tongue fpeaks. Bene. Gallants, I am not as I have been. Leon. So fay I; methinks, you are fadder. Claud. I hope, he is in love.
4 What fire is in my ears?] Alluding to a proverbial saying of the common people, that their ears burn when others are talking of them.
Pedro. Hang him, truant, there's no true drop of blood in him, to be truly touch'd with love; if he be fad, he wants mony.
Bene. I have the tooth-ach.
Pedro. Draw it.
Bene. Hang it.
Claud. You must hang it first, and draw it afterwards.
Pedro. What? figh for the tooth-ach!
Leon. Which is but a humour, or a worm.
Bene. Well, every one can mafter a grief but he that has it.
Claud. Yet fay I, he is in love.
Pedro. "There is no appearance of fancy in him, unless it be a fancy that he hath to ftrange difguifes, as to be a Dutch man to day, a French man "to morrow; 5 sor in the fhape of two countries "at once, a German from the wafte downward, all "flops; and a Spaniard from the hip upward, no "doublet:" Unless he have a fancy to this foolery, as it appears he hath, he is no fool for fancy, as you would have it to appear he is.
Claud. If he be not in love with fome woman, there is no believing old figns; he brushes his hat o'mornings; what fhould that bode?
Pedro. Hath any man seen him at the barber's?
Claud. No, but the barber's man hath been seen with him; and the old ornament of his cheek hath already stuft tennis-balls.
Leon. Indeed, he looks younger than he did by the lofs of a beard.
Pedro. Nay, he rubs himself with civet; can you fmell him out by that?
Claud. That's as much as to fay, the fweet youth's in love.
Pedro. The greatest note of it is his melancholy. 5 Edit. 1600. Mr. Pope.