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A Midsummer Night’s Dream

by: William Shakespeare

Original Text

Modern Text

Never mole, harelip, nor scar,
Nor mark prodigious, such as are
Despisèd in nativity,
Shall upon their children be.
With this field dew consecrate,
Every fairy take his gait.
And each several chamber bless
Through this palace with sweet peace.
And the owner of it blessed
Ever shall in safety rest.
Trip away. Make no stay.
Meet me all by break of day.
They won’t have moles, or harelips, or scars, or abnormal markings, or anything else that might alarm someone if their baby was born with it. Use this blessed dew from the fields to bless each room in the palace with sweet peace. And the blessed owner will always be safe. Run along. Don’t stay long. Meet me at dawn.
Exeunt all but ROBIN
They all exit except for ROBIN.
ROBIN
 If we shadows have offended,
 Think but this, and all is mended—
 That you have but slumbered here
 While these visions did appear.
 And this weak and idle theme,
 No more yielding but a dream,
 Gentles, do not reprehend.
 If you pardon, we will mend.
 And, as I am an honest Puck,
 If we have unearnèd luck
 Now to ’scape the serpent’s tongue,
 We will make amends ere long.
 Else the Puck a liar call.
 So good night unto you all.
 Give me your hands if we be friends,
 And Robin shall restore amends.
ROBIN
If we actors have offended you, just think of it this way and everything will be all right—you were asleep when you saw these visions, and this silly and pathetic story was no more real than a dream. Ladies and gentlemen, don’t get upset with me. If you forgive us, we’ll make everything all right. I’m an honest Puck, and I swear that if we’re lucky enough not to get hissed at, we’ll make it up to you soon. If not, then I’m a liar. So good night to everyone. Give me some applause, if we’re friends, and Robin will make everything up to you.
Exit
He exits.