As You Like It

by: William Shakespeare

  Act 4 Scene 1

page Act 4 Scene 1 Page 3

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ROSALIND

Break an hour’s promise in love? He that will divide a minute into a thousand parts and break but a part of the thousand part of a minute in the affairs of love, it may be said of him that Cupid hath clapped him o' th' shoulder, but I’ll warrant him heart-whole.

ROSALIND

You’d break a date with your beloved by a whole hour? A man who will dare to meet his lover even a thousandth part of a minute late—well, it’s possible he likes her, but I doubt he really loves the woman.

ORLANDO

Pardon me, dear Rosalind.

ORLANDO

Forgive me, darling Rosalind.

ROSALIND

45Nay, an you be so tardy, come no more in my sight. I had as lief be wooed of a snail.

ROSALIND

No, if you’re ever late like this again, I’ll refuse to see you. I’d rather be wooed by a snail.

ORLANDO

Of a snail?

ORLANDO

A snail?

ROSALIND

Ay, of a snail, for though he comes slowly, he carries his house on his head—a better jointure, I think, than you make a woman. Besides, he brings his destiny with him.

ROSALIND

Yes, a snail. Because even though he’s slow, he carries his house on his head—a better offer than you can make a woman, I think. Besides, he brings his fate with him.

ORLANDO

What’s that?

ORLANDO

What fate is that?

ROSALIND

Why, horns, which such as you are fain to be beholding to your wives for. But he comes armed in his fortune and prevents the slander of his wife.

ROSALIND

Why, his cuckold’s horns, of course—the kind you men are always blaming on your wives. See, the snail already has its horns, which prevents nasty rumors from spreading about his wife’s infidelity.

ORLANDO

55Virtue is no hornmaker, and my Rosalind is virtuous.

ORLANDO

A virtuous woman won’t give her husband horns, and my Rosalind is definitely virtuous.

ROSALIND

And I am your Rosalind.

ROSALIND

And I am your Rosalind.

CELIA

(as Aliena) It pleases him to call you so, but he hath a
Rosalind of a better leer than you.

CELIA

(as Aliena) He likes calling you that, but he’s got another Rosalind out there with a prettier face.