A Midsummer Night’s Dream

by: William Shakespeare

  Act 1 Scene 2

page Act 1 Scene 2 Page 3

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FLUTE

What is Thisbe? A wandering knight?

FLUTE

Who’s Thisbe? A knight on a quest?

QUINCE

It is the lady that Pyramus must love.

QUINCE

Thisbe is the lady Pyramus is in love with.

FLUTE

Nay, faith, let me not play a woman. I have a beard coming.

FLUTE

No, come on, don’t make me play a woman. I’m growing a beard.

QUINCE

20That’s all one. You shall play it in a mask, and you may speak as small as you will.

QUINCE

That doesn’t matter. You’ll wear a mask, and you can make your voice as high as you want to.

BOTTOM

An I may hide my face, let me play Thisbe too! I’ll speak in a monstrous little voice: “Thisne, Thisne!”—“Ah, Pyramus, my lover dear, thy Thisbe dear and lady dear!”

BOTTOM

In that case, if I can wear a mask, let me play Thisbe too! I’ll be Pyramus first: “Thisne, Thisne!”—And then in falsetto: “Ah, Pyramus, my dear lover! I’m your dear Thisbe, your dear lady!”

QUINCE

No, no. You must play Pyramus.—And Flute, you Thisbe.

QUINCE

No, no. Bottom, you’re Pyramus.—And Flute, you’re Thisbe.

BOTTOM

Well, proceed.

BOTTOM

All right. Go on.

QUINCE

Robin Starveling, the tailor?

QUINCE

Robin Starveling, the tailor?

STARVELING

25Here, Peter Quince.

STARVELING

Here, Peter Quince.

QUINCE

Robin Starveling, you must play Thisbe’s mother.—Tom Snout, the tinker?

QUINCE

Robin Starveling, you’re going to play Thisbe’s mother.—Tom Snout, the handyman.

SNOUT

Here, Peter Quince.

SNOUT

Here, Peter Quince.

QUINCE

You, Pyramus' father.—Myself, Thisbe’s father.—Snug the joiner, you, the lion’s part.—And I hope here is a play fitted.

QUINCE

You’ll be Pyramus’s father—I’ll play Thisbe’s father myself—Snug, the cabinetmaker, you’ll play the part of the lion.—So that’s everyone. I hope this play is well cast now.