As You Like It

by: William Shakespeare

Original Text

Modern Text

OLIVER

Twice did he turn his back and purposed so,
But kindness, nobler ever than revenge,
And nature, stronger than his just occasion,
155Made him give battle to the lioness,
Who quickly fell before him; in which hurtling,
From miserable slumber I awaked.

OLIVER

He turned away twice and almost left him there. But his kindness was nobler than even his desire for revenge, his natural goodness was stronger than his need to give his brother what he deserved. He fought the lioness and quickly defeated her. I woke from my miserable sleep when I heard the noise of their struggle.

CELIA

Are you his brother?

CELIA

Are you his brother?

ROSALIND

Was ’t you he rescued?

ROSALIND

Was it you that he rescued?

CELIA

160Was ’t you that did so oft contrive to kill him?

CELIA

Was it you that was always plotting to kill him?

OLIVER

'Twas I, but ’tis not I. I do not shame
To tell you what I was, since my conversion
So sweetly tastes, being the thing I am.

OLIVER

That was me, but it’s not me— I’m not ashamed to tell you what I once was, since I’m so happy to have since converted.

ROSALIND

But for the bloody napkin?

ROSALIND

But what about the bloody handkerchief?

OLIVER

165By and by.
When from the first to last betwixt us two
Tears our recountments had most kindly bathed—
As how I came into that desert place—
In brief, he led me to the gentle duke,
170Who gave me fresh array and entertainment,
Committing me unto my brother’s love,
Who led me instantly unto his cave,
There stripped himself, and here upon his arm
The lioness had torn some flesh away,
175Which all this while had bled. And now he fainted,
And cried in fainting upon Rosalind.
Brief, I recovered him, bound up his wound,
And after some small space, being strong at heart,

OLIVER

I’ll get there. When we had told each other our entire stories and cried, and I’d told him how I’d ended up in in the forest—well, he brought me to the duke, who gave me fresh clothing and hospitality, and put me in my brother’s care. My brother immediately took me to his cave, where he took off his clothing and there on his arm was a wound where the lioness had attacked him, ripping off some of his flesh. The wound had been bleeding the entire time. So, now he fainted, and as he fainted, he called out, “Rosalind!” Quickly, I resuscitated him and bound up his wound. After a brief time—as he is a strong, brave man—