Have you sent to Bottom’s house? Is he come home yet?
[Stage] Quince, Flute, Snout, and Starveling enter.
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?
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
Yea, and the best person too. And he is a very paramour
for a sweet voice.
You must say “paragon.” A “paramour” is, God bless us,
a thing of naught.
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 men.
[Stage] Snug enters.
O sweet bully Bottom! Thus hath he lost sixpence a day
during his life.
He could not have ’scaped sixpence a
day. An 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.
[Stage] Bottom enters.
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 everything, 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. Meet
presently at the palace. 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!
[Stage] They exit.