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Copyright © 2017William Shakespeare
All rights reserved.
ROMEO AND JULIET
Escalus, Prince of Verona.Paris, a young Count, kinsman to the Prince.Montague, heads of two houses at variance with each other.Capulet, heads of two houses at variance with each other.An old Man, of the Capulet family.Romeo, son to Montague.Tybalt, nephew to Lady Capulet.Mercutio, kinsman to the Prince and friend to Romeo.Benvolio, nephew to Montague, and friend to RomeoTybalt, nephew to Lady Capulet.Friar Laurence, Franciscan.Friar John, Franciscan.Balthasar, servant to Romeo.Abram, servant to Montague.Sampson, servant to Capulet.Gregory, servant to Capulet.Peter, servant to Juliet's nurse.An Apothecary.Three Musicians.An Officer.
Lady Montague, wife to Montague.Lady Capulet, wife to Capulet.Juliet, daughter to Capulet.Nurse to Juliet.
Citizens of Verona; Gentlemen and Gentlewomen of both houses; Maskers, Torchbearers, Pages, Guards, Watchmen, Servants, and Attendants.
Scene: Verona; Mantua.
Two households, both alike in dignity,In fair Verona, where we lay our scene,From ancient grudge break to new mutiny,Where civil blood makes civil hands unclean.From forth the fatal loins of these two foesA pair of star-cross’d lovers take their life;Whole misadventured piteous overthrowsDo with their death bury their parents’ strife.The fearful passage of their death-mark’d love,And the continuance of their parents’ rage,Which, but their children’s end, nought could remove,Is now the two hours’ traffic of our stage;The which if you with patient ears attend,What here shall miss, our toil shall strive to mend.
Enter Sampson and Gregory, of the house of Capulet, armed with swords and bucklers
Sampson Gregory, o’ my word, we’ll not carry coals.
Gregory No, for then we should be colliers.
Sampson I mean, an we be in choler, we’ll draw.
Gregory Ay, while you live, draw your neck out o’ the collar.
Sampson I strike quickly, being moved.
Gregory But thou art not quickly moved to strike.
Sampson A dog of the house of Montague moves me.
Gregory To move is to stir; and to be valiant is to stand: therefore, if thou art moved, thou runn’st away.
Sampson A dog of that house shall move me to stand: I will take the wall of any man or maid of Montague’s.
Gregory That shows thee a weak slave; for the weakest goes to the wall.
Sampson True; and therefore women, being the weaker vessels, are ever thrust to the wall: therefore I will push Montague’s men from the wall, and thrust his maids to the wall.
Gregory The quarrel is between our masters and us their men.
Sampson ’Tis all one, I will show myself a tyrant: when I have fought with the men, I will be cruel with the maids, and cut off their heads.
Gregory The heads of the maids?
Sampson Ay, the heads of the maids, or their maidenheads; take it in what sense thou wilt.
Gregory They must take it in sense that feel it.
Sampson Me they shall feel while I am able to stand: and’tis known I am a pretty piece of flesh.
Gregory ’Tis well thou art not fish; if thou hadst, thou hadst been poor John. Draw thy tool! here comes two of the house of the Montagues.
Sampson My naked weapon is out: quarrel, I will back thee.
Gregory How! turn thy back and run?
Sampson Fear me not.
Gregory No, marry; I fear thee!
Sampson Let us take the law of our sides; let them begin.
Gregory I will frown as I pass by, and let them take it as they list.
Sampson Nay, as they dare. I will bite my thumb at them; which is a disgrace to them, if they bear it.
Enter Abraham and Balthasar
Abraham Do you bite your thumb at us, sir?
Sampson I do bite my thumb, sir.
Abraham Do you bite your thumb at us, sir?
Sampson [Aside to Gregory] Is the law of our side, if I say ay?
Sampson No, sir, I do not bite my thumb at you, sir, but I bite my thumb, sir.
Gregory Do you quarrel, sir?
Abraham Quarrel sir! no, sir.
Sampson If you do, sir, I am for you: I serve as good a man as you.
Abraham No better.
Sampson Well, sir.
Gregory Say ‘better:’ here comes one of my master’s kinsmen.
Sampson Yes, better, sir.
Abraham You lie.
Sampson Draw, if you be men. Gregory, remember thy swashing blow.
Benvolio Part, fools!Put up your swords; you know not what you do.
Beats down their swords
Tybalt What, art thou drawn among these heartless hinds?Turn thee, Benvolio, look upon thy death.
Benvolio I do but keep the peace: put up thy sword,Or manage it to part these men with me.
Tybalt What, drawn, and talk of peace! I hate the word,As I hate hell, all Montagues, and thee:Have at thee, coward!
Enter, several of both houses, who join the fray; then enter Citizens, with clubs
First Citizen Clubs, bills, and partisans! strike! beat them down!Down with the Capulets! down with the Montagues!
Enter Capulet in his gown, and Lady Capulet
Capulet What noise is this? Give me my long sword, ho!
Lady Capulet A crutch, a crutch! why call you for a sword?
Capulet My sword, I say! Old Montague is come,And flourishes his blade in spite of me.
Enter Montague and Lady Montague
Montague Thou villain Capulet — Hold me not, let me go.
Lady Montague Thou shalt not stir a foot to seek a foe.
Enter Prince, with Attendants
Prince Rebellious subjects, enemies to peace,Profaners of this neighbour-stained steel —Will they not hear? What, ho! you men, you beasts,That quench the fire of your pernicious rageWith purple fountains issuing from your veins,On pain of torture, from those bloody handsThrow your mistemper’d weapons to the ground,And hear the sentence of your moved prince.Three civil brawls, bred of an airy word,By thee, old Capulet, and Montague,Have thrice disturb’d the quiet of our streets,And made Verona’s ancient citizensCast by their grave beseeming ornaments,To wield old partisans, in hands as old,Canker’d with peace, to part your canker’d hate:If ever you disturb our streets again,Your lives shall pay the forfeit of the peace.For this time, all the rest depart away:You Capulet; shall go along with me:And, Montague, come you this afternoon,To know our further pleasure in this case,To old Free-town, our common judgment-place.Once more, on pain of death, all men depart.
Exeunt all but Montague, Lady Montague, and Benvolio
Montague Who set this ancient quarrel new abroach?Speak, nephew, were you by when it began?
Benvolio Here were the servants of your adversary,And yours, close fighting ere I did approach:I drew to part them: in the instant cameThe fiery Tybalt, with his sword prepared,Which, as he breathed defiance to my ears,He swung about his head and cut the winds,Who nothing hurt withal hiss’d him in scorn:While we were interchanging thrusts and blows,Came more and more and fought on part and part,Till the prince came, who parted either part.
Lady Montague O, where is Romeo? saw you him to-day?Right glad I am he was not at this fray.
Benvolio Madam, an hour before the worshipp’d sunPeer’d forth the golden window of the east,A troubled mind drave me to walk abroad;Where, underneath the grove of sycamoreThat westward rooteth from the city’s side,So early walking did I see your son:Towards him I made, but he was ware of meAnd stole into the covert of the wood:I, measuring his affections by my own,That most are busied when they’re most alone,Pursued my humour not pursuing his,And gladly shunn’d who gladly fled from me.
Montague Many a morning hath he there been seen,With tears augmenting the fresh morning dew.Adding to clouds more clouds with his deep sighs;But all so soon as the all-cheering sunShould in the furthest east begin to drawThe shady curtains from Aurora’s bed,Away from the light steals home my heavy son,And private in his chamber pens himself,Shuts up his windows, locks far daylight outAnd makes himself an artificial night:Black and portentous must this humour prove,Unless good counsel may the cause remove.
Benvolio My noble uncle, do you know the cause?
Montague I neither know it nor can learn of him.
Benvolio Have you importuned him by any means?
Montague Both by myself and many other friends:But he, his own affections’ counsellor,Is to himself — I will not say how true —But to himself so secret and so close,So far from sounding and discovery,As is the bud bit with an envious worm,Ere he can spread his sweet leaves to the air,Or dedicate his beauty to the sun.Could we but learn from whence his sorrows grow.We would as willingly give cure as know.
Benvolio See, where he comes: so please you, step aside;I’ll know his grievance, or be much denied.
Montague I would thou wert so happy by thy stay,To hear true shrift. Come, madam, let’s away.
Exeunt Montague and Lady Montague
Benvolio Good-morrow, cousin.
Romeo Is the day so young?
Benvolio But new struck nine.
Romeo Ay me! sad hours seem long.Was that my father that went hence so fast?
Benvolio It was. What sadness lengthens Romeo’s hours?
Romeo Not having that, which, having, makes them short.
Benvolio In love?
Romeo Out —
Benvolio Of love?
Romeo Out of her favour, where I am in love.
Benvolio Alas, that love, so gentle in his view,Should be so tyrannous and rough in proof!
Romeo Alas, that love, whose view is muffled still,Should, without eyes, see pathways to his will!Where shall we dine? O me! What fray was here?Yet tell me not, for I have heard it all.Here’s much to do with hate, but more with love.Why, then, O brawling love! O loving hate!O any thing, of nothing first create!O heavy lightness! serious vanity!Mis-shapen chaos of well-seeming forms!Feather of lead, bright smoke, cold fire, sick health!Still-waking sleep, that is not what it is!This love feel I, that feel no love in this.Dost thou not laugh?
Benvolio No, coz, I rather weep.
Romeo Good heart, at what?
Benvolio At thy good heart’s oppression.
Romeo Why, such is love’s transgression.Griefs of mine own lie heavy in my breast,Which thou wilt propagate, to have it prestWith more of thine: this love that thou hast shownDoth add more grief to too much of mine own.Love is a smoke raised with the fume of sighs;Being purged, a fire sparkling in lovers’ eyes;Being vex’d a sea nourish’d with lovers’ tears:What is it else? a madness most discreet,A choking gall and a preserving sweet.Farewell, my coz.
Benvolio Soft! I will go along;An if you leave me so, you do me wrong.
Romeo Tut, I have lost myself; I am not here;This is not Romeo, he’s some other where.
Benvolio Tell me in sadness, who is that you love.
Romeo What, shall I groan and tell thee?
Benvolio Groan! why, no.But sadly tell me who.
Romeo Bid a sick man in sadness make his will:Ah, word ill urged to one that is so ill!In sadness, cousin, I do love a woman.
Benvolio I aim’d so near, when I supposed you loved.
Romeo A right good mark-man! And she’s fair I love.
Benvolio A right fair mark, fair coz, is soonest hit.
Romeo Well, in that hit you miss: she’ll not be hitWith Cupid’s arrow; she hath Dian’s wit;And, in strong proof of chastity well arm’d,From love’s weak childish bow she lives unharm’d.She will not stay the siege of loving terms,Nor bide the encounter of assailing eyes,Nor ope her lap to saint-seducing gold:O, she is rich in beauty, only poor,That when she dies with beauty dies her store.
Benvolio Then she hath sworn that she will still live chaste?
Romeo She hath, and in that sparing makes huge waste,For beauty starved with her severityCuts beauty off from all posterity.She is too fair, too wise, wisely too fair,To merit bliss by making me despair:She hath forsworn to love, and in that vowDo I live dead that live to tell it now.
Benvolio Be ruled by me, forget to think of her.
Romeo O, teach me how I should forget to think.
Benvolio By giving liberty unto thine eyes;Examine other beauties.
Romeo ’Tis the wayTo call hers exquisite, in question more:These happy masks that kiss fair ladies’ browsBeing black put us in mind they hide the fair;He that is strucken blind cannot forgetThe precious treasure of his eyesight lost:Show me a mistress that is passing fair,What doth her beauty serve, but as a noteWhere I may read who pass’d that passing fair?Farewell: thou canst not teach me to forget.
Benvolio I’ll pay that doctrine, or else die in debt.
Enter Capulet, Paris, and Servant
Capulet But Montague is bound as well as I,In penalty alike; and ’tis not hard, I think,For men so old as we to keep the peace.
Paris Of honourable reckoning are you both;And pity ’tis you lived at odds so long.But now, my lord, what say you to my suit?
Capulet But saying o’er what I have said before:My child is yet a stranger in the world;She hath not seen the change of fourteen years,Let two more summers wither in their pride,Ere we may think her ripe to be a bride.
Paris Younger than she are happy mothers made.
Capulet And too soon marr’d are those so early made.The earth hath swallow’d all my hopes but she,She is the hopeful lady of my earth:But woo her, gentle Paris, get her heart,My will to her consent is but a part;An she agree, within her scope of choiceLies my consent and fair according voice.This night I hold an old accustom’d feast,Whereto I have invited many a guest,Such as I love; and you, among the store,One more, most welcome, makes my number more.At my poor house look to behold this nightEarth-treading stars that make dark heaven light:Such comfort as do lusty young men feelWhen well-apparell’d April on the heelOf limping winter treads, even such delightAmong fresh female buds shall you this nightInherit at my house; hear all, all see,And like her most whose merit most shall be:Which on more view, of many mine being oneMay stand in number, though in reckoning none,Come, go with me.
To Servant, giving a paper
Go, sirrah, trudge aboutThrough fair Verona; find those persons outWhose names are written there, and to them say,My house and welcome on their pleasure stay.
Exeunt Capulet and Paris
Servant Find them out whose names are written here! It is written, that the shoemaker should meddle with his yard, and the tailor with his last, the fisher with his pencil, and the painter with his nets; but I am sent to find those persons whose names are here writ, and can never find what names the writing person hath here writ. I must to the learned. — In good time.
Enter Benvolio and Romeo
Benvolio Tut, man, one fire burns out another’s burning,One pain is lessen’d by another’s anguish;