A Midsummer Night’s Dream

by: William Shakespeare

  Act 1 Scene 2

page Act 1 Scene 2 Page 2

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BOTTOM

BOTTOM

What’s Pyramus? A lover or a tyrant?

QUINCE

A lover that kills himself, most gallant, for love.

QUINCE

A lover who kills himself very nobly for love.

BOTTOM

That will ask some tears in the true performing of it. If I do it, let the audience look to their eyes. I will move storms. I will condole in some measure.—To the rest.—Yet my chief humor is for a tyrant. I could play Ercles rarely, or a part to tear a cat in to make all split.
The raging rocks
And shivering shocks
Shall break the locks
Of prison gates.
And Phoebus' car
Shall shine from far
And make and mar
The foolish Fates.
This was lofty!—Now name the rest of the players.—This is Ercles' vein, a tyrant’s vein. A lover is more condoling.

BOTTOM

I’ll have to cry to make my performance believable. And as soon as I start crying, oh boy, the audience had better watch out, because they’ll start crying too. I’ll make tears pour out of their eyes like rainstorms. I’ll moan very believably.—Name the other actors.—But I’m really in the mood to play a tyrant. I could do a great job with Hercules, or any other part that requires ranting and raving. I would rant and rave really well. Like this, listen.
The raging rocks
nd shivering shocks
Will break the locks
Of prison gates.
And the sun-god’s car
Will shine from far
Away, and make and mar
Foolish fate.
Oh, that was truly inspired!—Now tell us who the other actors are.—By the way, my performance just now was in the style of Hercules, the tyrant style. A lover would have to be weepier, of course.

QUINCE

Francis Flute, the bellows-mender?

QUINCE

Francis Flute, the bellows-repairman?

FLUTE

15Here, Peter Quince.

FLUTE

Here, Peter Quince.

QUINCE

Flute, you must take Thisbe on you.

QUINCE

Flute, you’ll be playing the role of Thisbe.