As You Like It

William Shakespeare
No Fear Act 3 Scene 2
No Fear Act 3 Scene 2 Page 1

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Enter ORLANDO, with a paper
ORLANDO enters, holding a piece of paper.


Hang there, my verse, in witness of my love.
And thou, thrice-crownéd queen of night, survey
With thy chaste eye, from thy pale sphere above,
Thy huntress' name that my full life doth sway.
5O 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 witnessed everywhere.
Run, run, Orlando, carve on every tree
10The fair, the chaste, and unexpressive she.


Hang there on this tree, you lines of poetry, and bear witness to my love. And you,

goddess of the moon

Diana—in Greek and Roman mythology, goddess of the moon and the hunt—was the patron of virgin maidens like Rosalind.

goddess of the moon
, queen of the night—with your chaste eye, from your pale home up above—watch your huntress, who has the power to control my life. Oh, Rosalind, these trees will be my books—I’ll write my thoughts down on their bark. That way, everyone who passes through this forest will find your virtues everywhere. Run, run, Orlando, on every tree carve praises of her beauty, her virtue, and her inexpressibility.
He exits.


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


And how are you liking the shepherd’s life, Master 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. Now in respect it is in the fields, it pleaseth me well; but in respect it is not in the court, it is tedious. As it is a spare life, look you, it fits my humor well; but as there is no more plenty in it, it goes much against my stomach. Hast any philosophy in thee, shepherd?


Well, in and of itself, it is a good life, but given that it’s a shepherd’s life, it’s worthless. In the fact that it’s solitary, I enjoy it very much; but in the sense that it’s private, it’s terrible. Now, I’m very pleased with it being outdoors, but in its not being at the court, it is boring. Being a simple life, it suits me very well, but being a life without plenty, it doesn’t suit me at all. Are you any kind of philosopher yourself, shepherd?