As You Like It: Act 1, Scene 1



           Enter ORLANDO and ADAM.

      ORLANDO
  1   As I remember, Adam, it was upon this fashion
  2   bequeathed me by will but poor a thousand crowns,
  3   and, as thou sayest, charg'd my brother, on his
  4   blessing, to breed me well: and there begins my
  5   sadness. My brother Jaques he keeps at school, and
  6   report speaks goldenly of his profit: for my part,
  7   he keeps me rustically at home, or, to speak more
  8   properly, stays me here at home unkept; for call you
  9   that keeping for a gentleman of my birth, that
 10   differs not from the stalling of an ox? His horses
 11   are bred better; for, besides that they are fair
 12   with their feeding, they are taught their manage,
 13   and to that end riders dearly hired: but I, his
 14   brother, gain nothing under him but growth; for the
 15   which his animals on his dunghills are as much
 16   bound to him as I. Besides this nothing that he so
 17   plentifully gives me, the something that nature gave
 18   me his countenance seems to take from me: he lets
 19   me feed with his hinds, bars me the place of a
 20   brother, and, as much as in him lies, mines my
 21   gentility with my education. This is it, Adam, that
 22   grieves me; and the spirit of my father, which I
 23   think is within me, begins to mutiny against this
 24   servitude: I will no longer endure it, though yet I
 25   know no wise remedy how to avoid it.

      ADAM
 26   Yonder comes my master, your brother.

      ORLANDO
 27   Go apart, Adam, and thou shalt hear how he
 28   will shake me up.

           Enter OLIVER.

      OLIVER
 29   Now, sir! what make you here?

      ORLANDO
 30   Nothing: I am not taught to make any thing.

      OLIVER
 31   What mar you then, sir?

      ORLANDO
 32   Marry, sir, I am helping you to mar that which
 33   God made, a poor unworthy brother of yours,
 34   with idleness.


      OLIVER
 35   Marry, sir, be better employed, and be naught
 36   awhile.

      ORLANDO
 37   Shall I keep your hogs and eat husks with them?
 38   What prodigal portion have I spent, that I should
 39   come to such penury?

      OLIVER
 40   Know you where your are, sir?

      ORLANDO
 41   O, sir, very well; here in your orchard.

      OLIVER
 42   Know you before whom, sir?

      ORLANDO
 43   Ay, better than him I am before knows me. I know
 44   you are my eldest brother; and, in the gentle
 45   condition of blood, you should so know me. The
 46   courtesy of nations allows you my better, in that
 47   you are the first-born; but the same tradition
 48   takes not away my blood, were there twenty brothers
 49   betwixt us: I have as much of my father in me as
 50   you; albeit, I confess, your coming before me is
 51   nearer to his reverence.

      OLIVER
 52   What, boy!


 **        [Oliver tries to rough up Orlando,
           but Orlando gets the upper hand.]

      ORLANDO
 53   Come, come, elder brother, you are too young in
 54   this.


      OLIVER
 55   Wilt thou lay hands on me, villain?

      ORLANDO
 56   I am no villain; I am the youngest son of Sir
 57   Rowland de Boys; he was my father, and he
 58   is thrice a villain that says such a father begot
 59   villains. Wert thou not my brother, I would not
 60   take this hand from thy throat till this other had
 61   pulled out thy tongue for saying so: thou hast
 62   railed on thyself.

      ADAM
 63   Sweet masters, be patient: for your father's
 64   remembrance, be at accord.

      OLIVER
 65   Let me go, I say.

      ORLANDO
 66   I will not, till I please: you shall hear me. My
 67   father charged you in his will to give me good
 68   education: you have trained me like a peasant,
 69   obscuring and hiding from me all gentleman-like
 70   qualities. The spirit of my father grows strong in
 71   me, and I will no longer endure it: therefore allow
 72   me such exercises as may become a gentleman, or
 73   give me the poor allottery my father left me by
 74   testament; with that I will go buy my fortunes.

      OLIVER
 75   And what wilt thou do? beg, when that is spent?
 76   Well, sir, get you in: I will not long be troubled
 77   with you; you shall have some part of your will:
 78   I pray you, leave me.


      ORLANDO
 79   I will no further offend you than becomes me for
 80   my good.

      OLIVER
 81   Get you with him, you old dog.

      ADAM
 82   Is 'old dog' my reward? Most true, I have lost my
 83   teeth in your service. God be with my old master!
 84   he would not have spoke such a word.

           Exeunt ORLANDO and ADAM.

      OLIVER
 85   Is it even so? begin you to grow upon me? I will
 86   physic your rankness, and yet give no thousand
 87   crowns neither. Holla, Dennis!

           Enter DENNIS.

      DENNIS
 88   Calls your worship?

      OLIVER
 89   Was not Charles, the Duke's wrestler, here to speak
 90   with me?

      DENNIS
 91   So please you, he is here at the door and importunes
 92   access to you.

      OLIVER
 93   Call him in.

           Exit DENNIS.

 94   'Twill be a good way; and tomorrow the wrestling is.

           Enter CHARLES.

      CHARLES
 95   Good morrow to your worship.

      OLIVER
 96   Good Monsieur Charles, what's the new news at
 97   the new court?

      CHARLES
 98   There's no news at the court, sir, but the old news:
 99   that is, the old Duke is banished by his younger
100   brother the new Duke; and three or four loving
101   lords have put themselves into voluntary exile
102   with him, whose lands and revenues enrich the
103   new Duke; therefore he gives them good leave
104   to wander.

      OLIVER
105   Can you tell if Rosalind, the Duke's daughter, be
106   banished with her father?

      CHARLES
107   O, no; for the Duke's daughter, her cousin, so loves
108   her, being ever from their cradles bred together,
109   that she would have followed her exile, or have died
110   to stay behind her. She is at the court, and no
111   less beloved of her uncle than his own daughter; and
112   never two ladies loved as they do.

      OLIVER
113   Where will the old Duke live?


      CHARLES
114   They say he is already in the forest of Arden,
115   and a many merry men with him; and there they
116   live like the old Robin Hood of England: they say
117   many young gentlemen flock to him every day,
118   and fleet the time carelessly, as they did in the
119   golden world.

      OLIVER
120   What, you wrestle tomorrow before the new
121   Duke?

      CHARLES
122   Marry, do I, sir; and I came to acquaint you
123   with a matter. I am given, sir, secretly to under-
124   stand that your younger brother Orlando hath
125   a disposition to come in disguised against me
126   to try a fall. Tomorrow, sir, I wrestle for my
127   credit; and he that escapes me without some
128   broken limb shall acquit him well. Your brother
129   is but young and tender; and, for your love, I
130   would be loath to foil him, as I must, for my
131   own honour, if he come in. Therefore, out of
132   my love to you, I came hither to acquaint you
133   withal, that either you might stay him from his
134   intendment or brook such disgrace well as he
135   shall run into, in that it is a thing of his own
136   search and altogether against my will.

      OLIVER
137   Charles, I thank thee for thy love to me, which
138   thou shalt find I will most kindly requite. I had
139   myself notice of my brother's purpose herein
140   and have by underhand means laboured to
141   dissuade him from it, but he is resolute. I'll
142   tell thee, Charles: it is the stubbornest young
143   fellow of France, full of ambition, an envious
144   emulator of every man's good parts, a secret
145   and villainous contriver against me his natural
146   brother; therefore use thy discretion; I had as
147   lief thou didst break his neck as his finger. And
148   thou wert best look to't; for if thou dost him any
149   slight disgrace or if he do not mightily grace
150   himself on thee, he will practice against thee by
151   poison, entrap thee by some treacherous device
152   and never leave thee till he hath ta'en thy life by
153   some indirect means or other; for, I assure thee,
154   and almost with tears I speak it, there is not one
155   so young and so villainous this day living. I speak
156   but brotherly of him; but should I anatomize him
157   to thee as he is, I must blush and weep and thou
158   must look pale and wonder.

      CHARLES
159   I am heartily glad I came hither to you. If he come
160   tomorrow, I'll give him his payment: if ever he go
161   alone again, I'll never wrestle for prize more: and
162   so God keep your worship!

      OLIVER
163   Farewell, good Charles.

           Exit CHARLES.

164   Now will I stir this gamester: I hope I shall see
165   an end of him; for my soul, yet I know not why,
166   hates nothing more than he. Yet he's gentle, never
167   schooled and yet learned, full of noble device, of
168   all sorts enchantingly beloved, and indeed so much
169   in the heart of the world, and especially of my own
170   people, who best know him, that I am altogether
171   mispris'd: but it shall not be so long; this
172   wrestler shall clear all: nothing remains but that
173   I kindle the boy thither; which now I'll go about.

           Exit.