Romeo and Juliet

by: William Shakespeare

  Act 2 Scene 4

page Act 2 Scene 4 Page 10

Original Text

Modern Text

NURSE

Now God in heaven bless thee! Hark you, sir.

NURSE

May God in heaven bless you. Now please listen, sir.

ROMEO

What sayst thou, my dear Nurse?

ROMEO

What do you have to say, my dear Nurse?

NURSE

100Is your man secret? Did you ne'er hear say,
“Two may keep counsel, putting one away”?

NURSE

Can your man keep a secret? Haven’t you ever heard the saying, “Two can conspire to put one away”?

ROMEO

Warrant thee, my man’s as true as steel.

ROMEO

I assure you, my man is as true as steel.

NURSE

Well, sir, my mistress is the sweetest lady.—Lord, Lord! when ’twas a little prating thing.—Oh, there is a nobleman in town, one Paris, that would fain lay knife aboard, but she, good soul, had as lief see a toad, a very toad, as see him. I anger her sometimes and tell her that Paris is the properer man. But, I’ll warrant you, when I say so, she looks as pale as any clout in the versal world. Doth not rosemary and Romeo begin both with a letter?

NURSE

Well, sir, my mistress is the sweetest lady. Lord, Lord, when she was a little baby—Oh, there is one nobleman in the city, a guy named Paris, who would be happy to claim her as his own. Juliet would rather look at a toad than at him. I make her angry sometimes by saying that Paris is more handsome than you are. But when I say so, I swear she turns white as a sheet. Don’t “

rosemary

Rosemary was a token of remembrance between lovers and for the dead.

rosemary
” and “Romeo” begin with the same letter?

ROMEO

Ay, Nurse, what of that? Both with an R.

ROMEO

Yes, Nurse, what about that? They both begin with the letter “R.”

NURSE

105Ah, mocker, that’s the dog’s name. R is for the—No, I know it begins with some other letter, and she hath the prettiest sententious of it, of you and rosemary, that it would do you good to hear it.

NURSE

Ah, you jokester—that’s the dog’s name. “R” is for the—no, I know it begins with another letter. She says the most beautiful things about you and rosemary. It would be good for you to hear the things she says.

ROMEO

Commend me to thy lady.

ROMEO

Give my compliments to your lady.

NURSE

Ay, a thousand times.—Peter!

NURSE

Yes, a thousand times. Peter!

PETER

Anon!

PETER

I’m ready.

NURSE

Before and apace.

NURSE

(giving PETER her fan) Go ahead. Go quickly.
Exeunt
They all exit.