All of Shakespeare’s plays. More…

  • Enter ORLANDO and ADAM

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

  • Yonder comes my master, your brother.

  • Go apart, Adam, and thou shalt hear how he will
    shake me up.

  • Enter OLIVER

  • Now, sir! what make you here?

  • Nothing: I am not taught to make any thing.

  • What mar you then, sir?

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

  • Marry, sir, be better employed, and be naught awhile.

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

  • Know you where your are, sir?

  • O, sir, very well; here in your orchard.

  • Know you before whom, sir?

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

  • Come, come, elder brother, you are too young in this.

  • Wilt thou lay hands on me, villain?

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

  • Sweet masters, be patient: for your father's
    remembrance, be at accord.

  • Let me go, I say.

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

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

  • I will no further offend you than becomes me for my good.

  • Get you with him, you old dog.

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

  • Exeunt ORLANDO and ADAM

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

  • Enter DENNIS

  • Calls your worship?

  • Was not Charles, the duke's wrestler, here to speak with me?

  • So please you, he is here at the door and importunes
    access to you.

  • Call him in.
    Exit DENNIS
    'Twill be a good way; and to-morrow the wrestling is.

  • Enter CHARLES

  • Good morrow to your worship.

  • Good Monsieur Charles, what's the new news at the
    new court?

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

  • Can you tell if Rosalind, the duke's daughter, be
    banished with her father?

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

  • Where will the old duke live?

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

  • What, you wrestle to-morrow before the new duke?

  • Marry, do I, sir; and I came to acquaint you with a
    matter. I am given, sir, secretly to understand
    that your younger brother Orlando hath a disposition
    to come in disguised against me to try a fall.
    To-morrow, sir, I wrestle for my credit; and he that
    escapes me without some broken limb shall acquit him
    well. Your brother is but young and tender; and,
    for your love, I would be loath to foil him, as I
    must, for my own honour, if he come in: therefore,
    out of my love to you, I came hither to acquaint you
    withal, that either you might stay him from his
    intendment or brook such disgrace well as he shall
    run into, in that it is a thing of his own search
    and altogether against my will.

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

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

  • Farewell, good Charles.
    Exit CHARLES
    Now will I stir this gamester: I hope I shall see
    an end of him; for my soul, yet I know not why,
    hates nothing more than he. Yet he's gentle, never
    schooled and yet learned, full of noble device, of
    all sorts enchantingly beloved, and indeed so much
    in the heart of the world, and especially of my own
    people, who best know him, that I am altogether
    misprised: but it shall not be so long; this
    wrestler shall clear all: nothing remains but that
    I kindle the boy thither; which now I'll go about.