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Romeo and Juliet

ACT II

PROLOGUE
[Enter Chorus]
ChorusNow old desire doth in his death-bed lie,
And young affection gapes to be his heir;
That fair for which love groan’d for and would die,
With tender Juliet match’d, is now not fair.
Now Romeo is beloved and loves again,
Alike betwitched by the charm of looks,
But to his foe supposed he must complain,
And she steal love’s sweet bait from fearful hooks:
Being held a foe, he may not have access
To breathe such vows as lovers use to swear;10
And she as much in love, her means much less
To meet her new-beloved any where:
But passion lends them power, time means, to meet
Tempering extremities with extreme sweet.
[Exit]
ACT II SCENE IA lane by the wall of Capulet’s orchard.
[Enter ROMEO]
ROMEOCan I go forward when my heart is here?
Turn back, dull earth, and find thy centre out.
[He climbs the wall, and leaps down within it]
[Enter BENVOLIO and MERCUTIO]
BENVOLIORomeo! my cousin Romeo!
MERCUTIOHe is wise;
And, on my life, hath stol’n him home to bed.
BENVOLIOHe ran this way, and leap’d this orchard wall:
Call, good Mercutio.
MERCUTIONay, I’ll conjure too.
Romeo! humours! madman! passion! lover!
Appear thou in the likeness of a sigh:10
Speak but one rhyme, and I am satisfied;
Cry but ‘Ay me!’ pronounce but ‘love’ and ‘dove;’
Speak to my gossip Venus one fair word,
One nick-name for her purblind son and heir,
Young Adam Cupid, he that shot so trim,
When King Cophetua loved the beggar-maid!
He heareth not, he stirreth not, he moveth not;
The ape is dead, and I must conjure him.
I conjure thee by Rosaline’s bright eyes,
By her high forehead and her scarlet lip,20
 her fine foot, straight leg and quivering thigh
And the demesnes that there adjacent lie,
That in thy likeness thou appear to us!
BENVOLIOAnd if he hear thee, thou wilt anger him.
MERCUTIOThis cannot anger him: ‘twould anger him
To raise a spirit in his mistress’ circle
Of some strange nature, letting it there stand
Till she had laid it and conjured it down;
That were some spite: my invocation
Is fair and honest, and in his mistress’ name30
I conjure only but to raise up him.
BENVOLIOCome, he hath hid himself among these trees,
To be consorted with the humorous night:
Blind is his love and best befits the dark.
MERCUTIOIf love be blind, love cannot hit the mark.
Now will he sit under a medlar tree,
And wish his mistress were that kind of fruit
As maids call medlars, when they laugh alone.
Romeo, that she were, O, that she were
An open et caetera, thou a poperin pear!40
Romeo, good night: I’ll to my truckle-bed;
This field-bed is too cold for me to sleep:
Come, shall we go?
BENVOLIOGo, then; for ’tis in vain
To seek him here that means not to be found.
[Exeunt]

Next: Romeo and Juliet, Act 2, Scene 2

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