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Twelfth Night – Act Three Scene Four

Olivia is nervously waiting for Cesario to arrive

OLIVIA

I have sent after him: he says he’ll come;
How shall I feast him? what bestow of him?
For youth is bought more oft than begg’d or borrow’d.

Malvolio

Malvolio enters in yellow stockings and cross gartered. Olivia is horrified

MALVOLIO

Sweet lady, ho, ho.

OLIVIA

Smilest thou?
I sent for thee upon a sad occasion.

MALVOLIO

Sad, lady! I could be sad: this does make some
obstruction in the blood, this cross-gartering; but
what of that?

Malvolio is acting strangely to Olivia and smiling and talking “greatness”

OLIVIA

Why, this is very midsummer madness.

Mavolio is left in the “care” of Sir Toby and Maria. They pretend he is possessed by the devil.

SIR TOBY BELCH

…. How do you, Malvolio? how
is’t with you? What, man! defy the devil:
consider, he’s an enemy to mankind.

MALVOLIO

Do you know what you say?

MARIA

La you, an you speak ill of the devil, how he takes
it at heart! Pray God, he be not bewitched!

They taunt him and Malvolio, still under the spell of the letter leaves them

MARIA

Get him to say his prayers, good Sir Toby, get him to pray.

MALVOLIO

My prayers, minx!

MARIA

No, I warrant you, he will not hear of godliness.

MALVOLIO

Go, hang yourselves all! you are idle shallow
things: I am not of your element: you shall know
more hereafter.

Alone they congratulate themselves on the joke they have played

FABIAN

If this were played upon a stage now, I could
condemn it as an improbable fiction.

They decide to continue and escalate the “joke”

MARIA

Nay, pursue him now, lest the device take air and taint.

FABIAN

Why, we shall make him mad indeed.

MARIA

The house will be the quieter.

SIR TOBY BELCH

Come, we’ll have him in a dark room and bound. My
niece is already in the belief that he’s mad: we
may carry it thus, for our pleasure and his penance,
till our very pastime, tired out of breath, prompt
us to have mercy on him

Enter Sir Andrew

FABIAN

More matter for a May morning.

He has written the challenge to Cesario. Sir Toby and Fabian stir up Sir Andrew and Viola to fight each other. Praising the opponent and enjoying watching them squirm.

They draw and fight

Enter Antonio

ANTONIO

Put up your sword. If this young gentleman
Have done offence, I take the fault on me:
If you offend him, I for him defy you.

SIR TOBY BELCH

You, sir! why, what are you?

ANTONIO

One, sir, that for his love dares yet do more
Than you have heard him brag to you he will.

Antonio is arrested and he pleads to Viola for the money he gave her

ANTONIO

This comes with seeking you:
But there’s no remedy; I shall answer it.
What will you do, now my necessity
Makes me to ask you for my purse? It grieves me
Much more for what I cannot do for you
Than what befalls myself. You stand amazed;
But be of comfort.

He has mistaken Viola for her twin brother Sebastian and she denies having any money of Antonio’s

Antonio is led off believing that Sebastian has been betrayed him, Viola now knows that her brother may be alive.

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AS YOU LIKE IT – ACT THREE SCENE ONE & TWO

Scene One

We are briefly returned to the court for a short scene -Duke Frederick is angry with Oliver and demands he finds his brother.

DUKE FREDERICK

Not see him since? Sir, sir, that cannot be:
But were I not the better part made mercy,
I should not seek an absent argument
Of my revenge, thou present

Oliver protests

OLIVER

O that your highness knew my heart in this!
I never loved my brother in my life.

DUKE FREDERICK

More villain thou.

Oliver must find his brother, Orlando, and deliver him to court or risk punishment himself.

Act Three Scene Two

Back in the Forest – A Long Scene, the longest scene of the play.  I’ll break it down in sections

Orlando's bad fruit

1 – Orlando

He is hanging poems on trees for Rosalind, not knowing she is in the forest too.

ORLANDO

Hang there, my verse, in witness of my love:
And thou, thrice-crowned queen of night, survey
With thy chaste eye, from thy pale sphere above,
Thy huntress’ name that my full life doth sway.
O Rosalind! these trees shall be my books
And in their barks my thoughts I’ll character;
That every eye which in this forest looks
Shall see thy virtue witness’d every where.
Run, run, Orlando; carve on every tree
The fair, the chaste and unexpressive she.

Exit

“The fair, the chaste and unexpressive she” is such a lovely line

2 – Corin and Touchstone

CORIN

And how like you this shepherd’s life, Master Touchstone?

TOUCHSTONE

Truly, shepherd, in respect of itself, it is a good
life, but in respect that it is a shepherd’s life,
it is naught. In respect that it is solitary, I
like it very well; but in respect that it is
private, it is a very vile life…..

Corin has his own philosophy

CORIN

No more but that I know the more one sickens the
worse at ease he is; and that he that wants money,
means and content is without three good friends;
that the property of rain is to wet and fire to
burn; that good pasture makes fat sheep, and that a
great cause of the night is lack of the sun;

Next follows a section detailing the differences between court and country life

CORIN

…….those that are good manners
at the court are as ridiculous in the country as the
behavior of the country is most mockable at the
court. You told me you salute not at the court, but
you kiss your hands: that courtesy would be
uncleanly, if courtiers were shepherds.

Corin is happy with his simple country life

CORIN

Sir, I am a true labourer: I earn that I eat, get
that I wear, owe no man hate, envy no man’s
happiness, glad of other men’s good, content with my
harm, and the greatest of my pride is to see my ewes
graze and my lambs suck.

3 – Rosalind and Celia

Enter Rosalind reading one of the poems left by Orlando, although she doesn’t know this yet.

ROSALIND

From the east to western Ind,
No jewel is like Rosalind.
Her worth, being mounted on the wind,
Through all the world bears Rosalind.
All the pictures fairest lined
Are but black to Rosalind.
Let no fair be kept in mind
But the fair of Rosalind.

Touchstone teases her

TOUCHSTONE

He that sweetest rose will find
Must find love’s prick and Rosalind.
This is the very false gallop of verses: why do you
infect yourself with them?

ROSALIND

Peace, you dull fool! I found them on a tree.

TOUCHSTONE

Truly, the tree yields bad fruit.

Enter Celia, also reading some of the “bad fruit”

CELIA

Trow you who hath done this?

ROSALIND

Is it a man?

CELIA

And a chain, that you once wore, about his neck.
Change you colour?

ROSALIND

I prithee, who?

..

I would thou couldst
stammer, that thou mightst pour this concealed man
out of thy mouth, as wine comes out of a narrow-
mouthed bottle, either too much at once, or none at
all. I prithee, take the cork out of thy mouth that
may drink thy tidings.

CELIA

So you may put a man in your belly.

ROSALIND

Is he of God’s making? What manner of man? Is his
head worth a hat, or his chin worth a beard?

CELIA

Nay, he hath but a little beard.

ROSALIND

Why, God will send more, if the man will be
thankful: let me stay the growth of his beard, if
thou delay me not the knowledge of his chin.

CELIA

It is young Orlando, that tripped up the wrestler’s
heels and your heart both in an instant.

4 – Orlando and Jaques

JAQUES

I thank you for your company; but, good faith, I had
as lief have been myself alone.

ORLANDO

And so had I; but yet, for fashion sake, I thank you
too for your society.

JAQUES

God be wi’ you: let’s meet as little as we can.

ORLANDO

I do desire we may be better strangers.

JAQUES

I pray you, mar no more trees with writing
love-songs in their barks.

ORLANDO

I pray you, mar no more of my verses with reading
them ill-favouredly.

Jaques, Reading one of Orlando’s verses

JAQUES

Rosalind is your love’s name?

ORLANDO

Yes, just.

JAQUES

I do not like her name.

ORLANDO

There was no thought of pleasing you when she was
christened.

JAQUES

What stature is she of?

ORLANDO

Just as high as my heart.

JAQUES

You are full of pretty answers.

5 – Rosalind (as Ganymede) and Orlando

Rosalind encounter Orlando and questions him, Orlando is unaware that it is his Rosalind

ROSALIND

I pray you, what is’t o’clock?

ORLANDO

You should ask me what time o’ day: there’s no clock
in the forest.

ROSALIND

Then there is no true lover in the forest; else
sighing every minute and groaning every hour would
detect the lazy foot of Time as well as a clock.

Rosalind continue to tease and question Orlando

ROSALIND

No, I will not cast away my physic but on those that
are sick. There is a man haunts the forest, that
abuses our young plants with carving ‘Rosalind’ on
their barks; hangs odes upon hawthorns and elegies
on brambles, all, forsooth, deifying the name of
Rosalind: if I could meet that fancy-monger I would
give him some good counsel, for he seems to have the
quotidian of love upon him.

ORLANDO

I am he that is so love-shaked: I pray you tell me
your remedy.

ROSALIND

There is none of my uncle’s marks upon you: he
taught me how to know a man in love; in which cage
of rushes I am sure you are not prisoner.

ORLANDO

What were his marks?

ROSALIND

A lean cheek, which you have not, a blue eye and
sunken, which you have not, an unquestionable
spirit, which you have not, a beard neglected,
which you have not; but I pardon you for that, for
simply your having in beard is a younger brother’s
revenue: then your hose should be ungartered, your
bonnet unbanded, your sleeve unbuttoned, your shoe
untied and every thing about you demonstrating a
careless desolation; but you are no such man; you
are rather point-device in your accoutrements as
loving yourself than seeming the lover of any other.

 She Continues

ROSALIND

But are you so much in love as your rhymes speak?

ORLANDO

Neither rhyme nor reason can express how much.

Rosalind suggest that she/he tries to cure Orlando of his Love-sickness.  Orlando, knowing that it is impossible, agrees to play along.

ROSALIND

   … He was to imagine me
his love, his mistress; and I set him every day to
woo me: at which time would I, being but a moonish
youth, grieve, be effeminate, changeable, longing
and liking, proud, fantastical, apish, shallow,
inconstant, full of tears, full of smiles, for every
passion something and for no passion truly any
thing, as boys and women are for the most part
cattle of this colour; would now like him, now loathe
him; then entertain him, then forswear him; now weep
for him, then spit at him; that I drave my suitor
from his mad humour of love to a living humour of
madness; which was, to forswear the full stream of
the world, and to live in a nook merely monastic.
And thus I cured him; and this way will I take upon
me to wash your liver as clean as a sound sheep’s
heart, that there shall not be one spot of love in’t.

ORLANDO

I would not be cured, youth.

But he agrees to humour the youth, knowing his love is unshakeable

EXIT

Phew…Lots going on in that scene with lots of plot, subplot, character and themes. I’m going for a lie down under a greenwood tree.

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As you like it  – ACT TWO SCENE FIVE

Amiens Sings – Under the Greenwood tree

Jaques demands more

JAQUES

More, more, I prithee, more.

AMIENS

It will make you melancholy, Monsieur Jaques.

JAQUES

I thank it. More, I prithee, more. I can suck
melancholy out of a song, as a weasel sucks eggs.
More, I prithee, more.

AMIENS

My voice is ragged: I know I cannot please you.

JAQUES

I do not desire you to please me; I do desire you to
sing.

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update

Updates will be a bit slow this month for a couple of reasons

My work is going through a transition so I’ll be training

I am also performing with my Local Drama Group “Silchester Players”

Normal Service will be resumed soon.

 

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AS YOU LIKE IT – ACT ONE SCENE ONE

We start in the middle of a conversation, probably one sided, between Orlando and Adam.

Orlando

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

Orlando is unhappy with his elder brother’s treatment, or lack of treatment, of him and is frustrated. When Oliver, his brother enters there is an argument and scuffle between them.

OLIVER

Now, sir! what make you here?

ORLANDO

Nothing: I am not taught to make any thing.

OLIVER

What mar you then, sir?

ORLANDO

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

Oliver vows to make his younger brother pay for the insults, He calls in a wrestler, who is scheduled to fight before the Duke tomorrow….. But first some plot points to insert.

OLIVER

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

CHARLES

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.

OLIVER

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

CHARLES

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.

OLIVER

Where will the old duke live?

CHARLES

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

Ok, now the plot has been established we can carry on with the scene. Charles has learned that Orlando will try his luck at wrestling him tomorrow

 Charles

To-morrow, sir, I wrestle for my credit; and he that
escapes me without some broken limb shall acquit him
well

Oliver, seeing his chance to be revenged stirs up Charles

Oliver

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.

 The scene is set. Two brothers who hate each other, a banished duke and usurping brother. All we need now is two people to fall in love and a misunderstanding due to a girl disguising herself as a man and we have a shakespearean comedy.

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Henry V – ACT FIVE – Prologue & Scene 1

The Chorus fills in the blanks for us. He brings us back to England for the triumphant return of King Henry. Then back to France again for the final scenes

Chorus

Vouchsafe to those that have not read the story,
That I may prompt them: and of such as have,
I humbly pray them to admit the excuse
Of time, of numbers and due course of things,
Which cannot in their huge and proper life
Be here presented. Now we bear the king
Toward Calais: grant him there; there seen,
Heave him away upon your winged thoughts
Athwart the sea. Behold, the English beach
Pales in the flood with men, with wives and boys,
Whose shouts and claps out-voice the deep mouth’d sea,
Which like a mighty whiffler ‘fore the king
Seems to prepare his way: so let him land,
And solemnly see him set on to London.
So swift a pace hath thought that even now
You may imagine him upon Blackheath;
Where that his lords desire him to have borne
His bruised helmet and his bended sword
Before him through the city: he forbids it,
Being free from vainness and self-glorious pride;
Giving full trophy, signal and ostent
Quite from himself to God. But now behold,
In the quick forge and working-house of thought,
How London doth pour out her citizens!
The mayor and all his brethren in best sort,
Like to the senators of the antique Rome,
With the plebeians swarming at their heels,
Go forth and fetch their conquering Caesar in:
As, by a lower but loving likelihood,
Were now the general of our gracious empress,
As in good time he may, from Ireland coming,
Bringing rebellion broached on his sword,
How many would the peaceful city quit,
To welcome him! much more, and much more cause,
Did they this Harry. Now in London place him;
As yet the lamentation of the French
Invites the King of England’s stay at home;
The emperor’s coming in behalf of France,
To order peace between them; and omit
All the occurrences, whatever chanced,
Till Harry’s back-return again to France:
There must we bring him; and myself have play’d
The interim, by remembering you ’tis past.
Then brook abridgment, and your eyes advance,
After your thoughts, straight back again to France.

ACT FIVE SCENE ONE

We are in back in France. Fluellen and Pistol meet and argue. Fluellen forces Pistol to eat a leek that he keeps in his cap.

FLUELLEN

if you can mock a leek, you can eat a leek.

Pistol is humiliated by Fluellen and Gower. Left alone he gives this warning

PISTOL

Doth Fortune play the huswife with me now?
News have I, that my Nell is dead i’ the spital
Of malady of France;
And there my rendezvous is quite cut off.
Old I do wax; and from my weary limbs
Honour is cudgelled. Well, bawd I’ll turn,
And something lean to cutpurse of quick hand.
To England will I steal, and there I’ll steal:
And patches will I get unto these cudgell’d scars,
And swear I got them in the Gallia wars

The end of a wonderful, if minor, character through the Henry IV plays and Merry wives of Windsor. I wonder what happens to him after this play has finished?

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Henry V – Act Four – Scene Seven and Eight

As the battle draws to a close the English find a terrible site in their camp

FLUELLEN

Kill the poys and the luggage! ’tis expressly
against the law of arms: ’tis as arrant a piece of
knavery, mark you now, as can be offer’t; in your
conscience, now, is it not?

GOWER

‘Tis certain there’s not a boy left alive; and the
cowardly rascals that ran from the battle ha’ done
this slaughter:

Henry is furious at this slaughter of the boys.

KING HENRY V

I was not angry since I came to France
Until this instant. Take a trumpet, herald;
Ride thou unto the horsemen on yon hill:
If they will fight with us, bid them come down,
Or void the field; they do offend our sight:
If they’ll do neither, we will come to them,
And make them skirr away, as swift as stones
Enforced from the old Assyrian slings:
Besides, we’ll cut the throats of those we have,
And not a man of them that we shall take
Shall taste our mercy. Go and tell them so.

The French Herald returns in less confident mood

KING HENRY V

I tell thee truly, herald,
I know not if the day be ours or no;
For yet a many of your horsemen peer
And gallop o’er the field.

MONTJOY

The day is yours.

KING HENRY V

Praised be God, and not our strength, for it!
What is this castle call’d that stands hard by?

MONTJOY

They call it Agincourt.

KING HENRY V

Then call we this the field of Agincourt,
Fought on the day of Crispin Crispianus.

The King sees the soldiers who challenged him the night before. He gives Fluellen the glove, claiming it’s a Frenchman’s and bids him to wear so if any man challenge him then he is a traitor. He then tells Warwick and Gloucester to watch them and make sure no harm comes to either from his prank.

SCENE 8

Fluellen and Williams meet and argue until Henry and other lords turn up and the jest is revealed, much to the embarrassment of Williams.

Then comes the sober news of the Battle.

KING HENRY V

This note doth tell me of ten thousand French
That in the field lie slain: of princes, in this number,
And nobles bearing banners, there lie dead
One hundred twenty six: added to these,
Of knights, esquires, and gallant gentlemen,
Eight thousand and four hundred; of the which,
Five hundred were but yesterday dubb’d knights:
So that, in these ten thousand they have lost,
There are but sixteen hundred mercenaries;
The rest are princes, barons, lords, knights, squires,
And gentlemen of blood and quality.

Here was a royal fellowship of death!
Where is the number of our English dead?

When told the number of the English casualties he can hardly believe it

Edward the Duke of York, the Earl of Suffolk,
Sir Richard Ketly, Davy Gam, esquire:
None else of name; and of all other men
But five and twenty.

Henry gives praise to God.

KING HENRY V

O God, thy arm was here;
And not to us, but to thy arm alone,
Ascribe we all! When, without stratagem,
But in plain shock and even play of battle,
Was ever known so great and little loss
On one part and on the other? Take it, God,
For it is none but thine!

Do we all holy rites;
Let there be sung ‘Non nobis’ and ‘Te Deum;’
The dead with charity enclosed in clay:
And then to Calais; and to England then:
Where ne’er from France arrived more happy men.

The battle of Agincourt is over and the English are victorious

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