As You Like It: Act 3, Scene 3
Enter Clown [TOUCHSTONE], AUDREY;
and JAQUES [behind].
1Come apace, good Audrey: I will
2fetch up your goats, Audrey. And
3how, Audrey? am I the man yet?
4doth my simple feature content you?
5Your features! Lord warrant us! what
7I am here with thee and thy goats,
8as the most capricious poet, honest
9Ovid, was among the Goths.
10O knowledge ill-inhabited, worse
11than Jove in a thatched house!
12When a man's verses cannot be understood,
13nor a man's good wit seconded with the forward
14child Understanding, it strikes a man more
15dead than a great reckoning in a little room.
16Truly, I would the gods had made thee poetical.
17I do not know what 'poetical' is: is it honest in
18deed and word? is it a true thing?
19No, truly; for the truest poetry is the most
20feigning; and lovers are given to poetry,
21and what they swear in poetry may be said
22as lovers they do feign.
23Do you wish then that the gods had made
25I do, truly; for thou swearest to me thou art
26honest: now, if thou wert a poet, I might
27have some hope thou didst feign.
28Would you not have me honest?
29No, truly, unless thou wert hard-favoured;
30for honesty coupled to beauty is to have
31honey a sauce to sugar.
32A material fool!
33Well, I am not fair; and therefore I pray
34the gods make me honest.
35Truly, and to cast away honesty upon
36a foul slut were to put good meat into
37an unclean dish.
38I am not a slut, though I thank the gods
39I am foul.
40Well, praised be the gods for thy foulness!
41sluttishness may come hereafter. But be it as
42it may be, I will marry thee, and to that end
43I have been with Sir Oliver Martext, the vicar
44of the next village, who hath promised to meet
45me in this place of the forest and to couple us.
46I would fain see this meeting.
47Well, the gods give us joy!
48Amen. A man may, if he were of a fearful heart,
49stagger in this attempt; for here we have no temple
50but the wood, no assembly but horn-beasts. But what
51though? Courage! As horns are odious, they are
52necessary. It is said, 'many a man knows no end of
53his goods:' right; many a man has good horns, and
54knows no end of them. Well, that is the dowry of
55his wife; 'tis none of his own getting. Horns?
56Even so. Poor men alone? No, no; the noblest deer
57hath them as huge as the rascal. Is the single man
58therefore blessed? No: as a walled town is more
59worthier than a village, so is the forehead of a
60married man more honourable than the bare brow
61of a bachelor; and by how much defence is better
62than no skill, by so much is a horn more precious
63than to want. Here comes Sir Oliver.
Enter SIR OLIVER MARTEXT.
64Sir Oliver Martext, you are well met: will you
65dispatch us here under this tree, or shall we go
66with you to your chapel?
SIR OLIVER MARTEXT
67Is there none here to give the woman?
68I will not take her on gift of any man.
SIR OLIVER MARTEXT
69Truly, she must be given, or the marriage
70is not lawful.
JAQUES [Coming Forward.]
71Proceed, proceed I'll give her.
72Good even, good Master What-ye-call't:
73how do you, sir? You are very well met:
74God 'ild you for your last company:
75I am very glad to see you: even a toy
76in hand here, sir: nay, pray be covered.
77Will you be married, motley?
78As the ox hath his bow, sir, the horse
79his curb and the falcon her bells, so
80man hath his desires; and as pigeons
81bill, so wedlock would be nibbling.
82And will you, being a man of your
83breeding, be married under a bush like
84a beggar? Get you to church, and have
85a good priest that can tell you what
86marriage is: this fellow will but join
87you together as they join wainscot;
88then one of you will prove a shrunk
89panel and, like green timber, warp, warp.
90I am not in the mind but I were better to
91be married of him than of another: for he
92is not like to marry me well; and not being
93well married, it will be a good excuse for
94me hereafter to leave my wife.
95Go thou with me, and let me counsel thee.
96Come, sweet Audrey:
97We must be married, or we must live in bawdry.
98Farewell, good Master Oliver: not,
99'O sweet Oliver,
100O brave Oliver,
101Leave me not behind thee;'
104Begone, I say,
105I will not to wedding with thee.'
[Exeunt JAQUES, TOUCHSTONE
SIR OLIVER MARTEXT
106'Tis no matter: ne'er a fantastical knave of
107them all shall flout me out of my calling.