| Act IV,
Athens. QUINCE'S house.
Enter QUINCE, FLUTE, SNOUT, and STARVELING
Have you sent to Bottom's house? Is he come home yet?
He cannot be heard of. Out of doubt he is transported.
If he come not, then the play is marred: it goes not forward, doth
It is not possible: you have not a man in all Athens able to
discharge Pyramus but he.
No, he hath simply the best wit of any handicraft man in Athens.
Yea and the best person too; and he is a very paramour for a sweet
You must say 'paragon'. A paramour is (God bless us!) a thing of
Masters, the Duke is coming from the temple, and there is two or
three lords and ladies more married. If our sport had gone forward, we had all been made
O, sweet bully Bottom! Thus hath he lost sixpence a day during his
life; he could not have 'scaped sixpence a day. And 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.
Where are these lads? Where are these hearts?
Bottom! O most courageous day! O most happy hour!
Masters, I am to discourse wonders - but ask me not what; for if I
tell you, I am no true Athenian. I will tell you every thing, right as it fell out.
Let us hear, sweet 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 pumps;
every man look o'er his part. For the short and the long is, our play is preferred. In any
case, let Thisbe have clean linen; and let not him that plays the lion pair his nails, for
they shall hang out for the lion's claws. And, most 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!