A Fairy Tale in Two Acts Taken from Shakespeare (1763) eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 31 pages of information about A Fairy Tale in Two Acts Taken from Shakespeare (1763).


1st Fai.  Yes, yes, I know you, you are he
           That frighten all the villagree;
           Skim milk, and labour in the quern,
           And bootless make the huswife churn;
           Or make the drink to bear no barm,
           Laughing at their loss and harm,
           But call you Robin, and sweet Puck,
           You do their work, and bring good luck.

Yes, you are that unlucky Sprite! 
Like Will-a-whisp, a wandring light,
Through ditch, thro’ bog, who lead astray
Benighted swains, who lose their way;
You pinch the slattern black and blue,
You silver drop in huswife’s shoe;
For call you Robin and sweet Puck,
You do their work, and bring good luck.

Puck.  But make room, Fairy, here comes Oberon.

1st Fai.  And here my mistress:  Would that he were gone!

Enter Oberon King of Fairies at one door, with his train, and the
Queen at another with hers.

Ob.  Ill met by moon-light, proud Titania!

Queen.  What, jealous Oberon?  Fairy, skip hence,
I have forsworn his bed and Company.

Ob.  Tarry, rash wanton!  Am not I thy Lord?

Queen.  Then I must be thy Lady:  Why art thou here? 
Come from the farthest steep of India? 
But that, forsooth, the bouncing Amazon,
Your buskin’d mistress, and your warrior love,
To Theseus must be wedded; and you come
To give their bed joy and prosperity.

Ob.  How canst thou thus, for shame, Titania,
Glance at my credit with Hippolita,
Knowing I know thy love to Theseus? 
Didst thou not lead him through the glimmering night
From Perigune, whom he ravished,
And make him, with fair Egle, break his faith
With Ariadne and Antiopa?

Queen.  These are the forgeries of jealousy: 
And never since that middle summer’s spring
Met we on hill, in dale, forest, or mead,
To dance our ringlets to the whistling wind,
But with thy brawls thou hast disturb’d our sport. 
The spring, the summer,
The chiding autumn, angry winter, change
Their wonted liveries; and the amazed world
By their increase now knows not which is which;
And this same progeny of evil comes
From our debate, from our dissention,
We are their parents and original.

Ob.  Do you amend it then, it lies in you. 
Why should Titania cross her Oberon? 
I do but beg a little changling boy
To be my henchman.

Queen.  Set your heart at rest,
The Fairy-land buys not the child of me. 
His mother was a votress of my order,
And in the spiced Indian air by night
Full often she hath gossipt by my side;
And sat with me on Neptune’s yellow sands. 
Marking th’ embarked traders of the flood,
When we have laught to see the sails conceive,
And grow big-bellied with the wanton wind;
Which she, with pretty and with swimming gait,
Would imitate, and sail upon the land,
To fetch me trifles, and return again
As from a voyage rich with merchandize;
But she being mortal of that boy did die,
And for her sake I do rear up her boy,
And for her sake I will not part with him.

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A Fairy Tale in Two Acts Taken from Shakespeare (1763) from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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