Romeo and Juliet: Act 4, Scene 5

           [Enter Nurse.]

1. Fast, I warrant her, she: i.e., I'm sure she's fast asleep.
  1   Mistress! what, mistress! Juliet! — Fast, I warrant her,
         she. —
  2   Why, lamb! why, lady! fie, you slug-a-bed!
  3   Why, love, I say! madam! sweet-heart! why, bride!
4. pennyworths: small quantities [of sleep].
  4   What, not a word? You take your pennyworths now;
  5   Sleep for a week; for the next night, I warrant,
6. hath set up his rest: i.e., has resolved. 
7. That you shall rest but little: The Nurse is teasing Juliet with a sex joke; Juliet will "rest but little" because Paris will be making love to her all night.
  6   The County Paris hath set up his rest,
  7   That you shall rest but little. God forgive me!
  8   Marry, and amen, how sound is she asleep!
  9   I must needs wake her. Madam, madam, madam!
 10   Ay, let the county take you in your bed;
 11   He'll fright you up, i' faith. Will it not be?

           [Draws back the bed curtains.]

 12   What, dress'd! and in your clothes! and down again!
 13   I must needs wake you; Lady! lady! lady!
 14   Alas, alas! Help, help! my lady's dead!
 15   O, well-a-day, that ever I was born!
16. Some aqua vitae, ho!: i.e., somebody bring me liquor!
 16   Some aqua vitae, ho! My lord! my lady!

           [Enter LADY CAPULET.]

 17   What noise is here?

 17                           O lamentable day!

 18   What is the matter?

 18                           Look, look! O heavy day!

 19   O me, O me! My child, my only life,
 20   Revive, look up, or I will die with thee!
 21   Help, help! Call help.

           Enter Father [CAPULET.]

 22   For shame, bring Juliet forth; her lord is come.

 23   She's dead, deceased, she's dead; alack the day!

 24   Alack the day, she's dead, she's dead, she's dead!

 25   Ha! let me see her: out, alas! she's cold:
 26   Her blood is settled, and her joints are stiff;
 27   Life and these lips have long been separated:
 28   Death lies on her like an untimely frost
 29   Upon the sweetest flower of all the field.

 30   O lamentable day!

 30                           O woeful time!

31. ta'en her hence: taken her away.
 31   Death, that hath ta'en her hence to make me wail,
 32   Ties up my tongue, and will not let me speak.

           Enter FRIAR [LAURENCE]
           and the COUNTY [PARIS,
           with the MUSICIANS].

 33   Come, is the bride ready to go to church?

 34   Ready to go, but never to return.
 35   O son! the night before thy wedding-day
 36   Hath Death lain with thy wife. There she lies,
 37   Flower as she was, deflowered by him.
 38   Death is my son-in-law, Death is my heir;
 39   My daughter he hath wedded: I will die,
40. living: property, income.
 40   And leave him all; life, living, all is Death's.

41. thought long: looked forward to with longing.
 41   Have I thought long to see this morning's face,
 42   And doth it give me such a sight as this?

43. unhappy: disastrous.
 43   Accursed, unhappy, wretched, hateful day!
 44   Most miserable hour that e'er time saw
45. lasting: ceaseless.
 45   In lasting labor of his pilgrimage!
 46   But one, poor one, one poor and loving child,
 47   But one thing to rejoice and solace in,
48. catch'd: hidden, snatched.
 48   And cruel death hath catch'd it from my sight!

 49   O woe! O woeful, woeful, woeful day!
 50   Most lamentable day, most woeful day,
 51   That ever, ever, I did yet behold!
 52   O day! O day! O day! O hateful day!
 53   Never was seen so black a day as this:
 54   O woeful day, O woeful day!

 55   Beguiled, divorced, wronged, spited, slain!
 56   Most detestable death, by thee beguil'd,
 57   By cruel cruel thee quite overthrown!
 58   O love! O life! not life, but love in death!

 59   Despised, distressed, hated, martyr'd, kill'd!
 60   Uncomfortable time, why camest thou now
 61   To murder, murder our solemnity?
 62   O child! O child! my soul, and not my child!
 63   Dead art thou! Alack! my child is dead;
 64   And with my child my joys are buried.

65. Peace: quiet. Confusion's: ruin's, loss's.
66. confusions: wild outcries.
 65   Peace, ho, for shame! confusion's cure lives not
 66   In these confusions. Heaven and yourself
 67   Had part in this fair maid; now heaven hath all,
 68   And all the better is it for the maid.
 69   Your part in her you could not keep from death,
 70   But heaven keeps his part in eternal life.
71. promotion: advancement [from maid to wife].
72. 'twas your heaven she should be advanced: i.e., you thought it would be like heaven to see Juliet advance [to the position of wife].
 71   The most you sought was her promotion;
 72   For 'twas your heaven she should be advanced,
 73   And weep ye now, seeing she is advanced
 74   Above the clouds, as high as heaven itself?
75. in this love: i.e., by lamenting her death.
 75   O, in this love, you love your child so ill,
 76   That you run mad, seeing that she is well.
77-78. She's  . . .  young:
 77   She's not well married that lives married long;
 78   But she's best married that dies married young.
79. rosemary: herb signifying enduring love, used at both weddings and funerals. 80. fair corse: beautiful corpse.
 79   Dry up your tears, and stick your rosemary
 80   On this fair corse; and, as the custom is,
 81   In all her best array bear her to church;
82. fond nature: foolish, innocent human nature.
83. nature's tears are reason's merriment: that which makes human nature weep is cause for joy to the reason. Friar Laurence's viewpoint is that reason sees Juliet's death as her advancement to heaven.
 82   For though fond nature bids us all lament,
 83   Yet nature's tears are reason's merriment.

 84   All things that we ordained festival,
85. Turn from their office: are converted from their intended function. 86. instruments: i.e., musical instruments.
87. cheer: banquet.
88. sullen: mournful.
89. corse: corpse.
 85   Turn from their office to black funeral;
 86   Our instruments to melancholy bells,
 87   Our wedding cheer to a sad burial feast,
 88   Our solemn hymns to sullen dirges change,
 89   Our bridal flowers serve for a buried corse,
 90   And all things change them to the contrary.

 91   Sir, go you in; and, madam, go with him;
 92   And go, Sir Paris; every one prepare
 93   To follow this fair corse unto her grave:
94. lour upon you for some ill: frown on you for some sin. 95. Move: anger. crossing: opposing.

 pipe and tabor
 94   The heavens do lour upon you for some ill;
 95   Move them no more by crossing their high will.

           [Exeunt CAPULET, LADY CAPULET,
           PARIS, and FRIAR LAURENCE.]

      First Musician
96. put up our pipes: put our pipes in their cases. A pipe is a wind instrument comparable to the modern flute, and a tabor is small drum. Lively dance music, appropriate for a wedding, was played with pipe and tabor.
 96   Faith, we may put up our pipes, and be
 97   gone.

 98   Honest goodfellows, ah, put up, put up;
 99   For, well you know, this is a pitiful case.


      First Musician
100-101. the case may be amended:
100   Ay, by my troth, the case may be
101   amended.

Enter [PETER]:
           Enter [PETER].

102. "Heart's ease": A popular ballad about the joys of the carefree life.
102   Musicians, O, musicians, "Heart's ease,"
103   "Heart's ease." O, an you will have me live, play
104   "Heart's ease."

      First Musician
105   Why "Heart's ease?"

106   O, musicians, because my heart itself plays
107. "My heart is full of woe": Perhaps another ballad; perhaps Peter's made-up name for the song his heart is playing.  108. dump: mournful tune. "Merry dump" is a comic oxymoron.
107    "My heart is full of woe." O, play me some
108    merry dump, to comfort me.

      First Musician
109   Not a dump we; 'tis no time to play now.

110   You will not, then?

      First Musician
111   No.

112   I will then give it you soundly.

      First Musician
113   What will you give us?

114. gleek: gibe, jest.
115. give you the minstrel: i.e., call you rogues. Mercutio also used "minstrel" as a term of abuse. See Act 3, Scene 1, line 46.
114   No money, on my faith, but the gleek;
115   I will give you the minstrel.

      First Musician
116. Then I will give you the serving-creature: Then I will call you a lowly servant.
116   Then I will give you the serving-creature.

117   Then will I lay the serving-creature's dagger on
118. pate: noggin, head.  carry: (1) endure; (2) sing.  crotchets: (1) whims; (2) quarternotes.  I'll re you, I'll fa you: i.e., I'll make you sing another tune.
119. do you note me?: do you heed me?
118   your pate. I will carry no crotchets: I'll re you,
119   I'll fa you; do you note me?

      First Musician
120. An you re us and fa us, you note us: If you re us and fa us, you set us to music.
120   An you re us and fa us, you note us.

      Second Musician
121. put up your dagger: put your dagger in its sheath.  put out: display.
121   Pray you, put up your dagger, and put out your
122    wit.

123. dry-beat: thrash without drawing blood.
124. iron wit: i.e., strong, punishing wit.
123   Then have at you with my wit! I will dry-beat
124   you with an iron wit, and put up my iron dagger.
125   Answer me like men:
126. griping: gripping, inescapable.
126-128. When griping griefs ... silver sound:
127. doleful dumps: sad dejection
126      "When griping griefs the heart doth wound,
127        And doleful dumps the mind oppress,
128      Then music with her silver sound"—
129   why "silver sound"? why "music with her silver
130. Catling: A catling is a lute-string made of catgut.
130   sound"? What say you, Simon Catling?

      First Musician
131   Marry, sir, because silver hath a sweet
132   sound.

133. Pretty!: i.e., well done! Peter is congratulating First Musician (Simon Catling) on his witty answer to Peter's question.  Rebeck: A rebeck (or "rebec") is a fiddle with three strings.
134-135. I say ... silver: i.e., I say it's because musicians make sweet sounds for money.
133   Pretty! What say you, Hugh Rebeck?

      Second Musician
134   I say "silver sound," because musicians sound
135   for silver.

136   Pretty too! What say you, James
137. Soundpost: A soundpost is an internal structural support of a stringed instrument.
137   Soundpost?

      Third Musician
138   Faith, I know not what to say.

139. cry you mercy: beg your pardon. you are the singer:
139   O, I cry you mercy; you are the singer: I will say
140   for you. It is "music with her silver sound,"
141. have no gold for sounding: i.e., don't get rich by making music.
142-143. "Then music  . . .  redress": This is Peter's parting joke; he takes the two lines he quotes to mean that if the musicians are sad because they don't get paid much, then their music should cheer them up.
141   because musicians have no gold for sounding:
142      "Then music with her silver sound
143      With speedy help doth lend redress."


      First Musician
144. pestilent: i.e., extremely annoying.
144   What a pestilent knave is this same!

      Second Musician
145. Jack:  |  we'll in here: we'll go inside here.
146. stay dinner: wait for lunch to be served.
145   Hang him, Jack! Come, we'll in here, tarry for the
146   mourners, and stay dinner.