Romeo and Juliet

by: William Shakespeare

  Act 4 Scene 5

page Act 4 Scene 5 Page 6

Original Text

Modern Text

PETER

Then will I lay the serving creature’s dagger on your pate. I will carry no crotchets. I’ll re you, I’ll fa you. Do you note me?

PETER

Then I’ll smack you on the head with the serving-creature’s knife. I won’t mess around. I’ll make you sing. Do you hear me?

FIRST MUSICIAN

An you re us and fa us, you note us.

FIRST MUSICIAN

If you make us sing, you’ll hear us.

SECOND MUSICIAN

Pray you, put up your dagger and put out your wit.

SECOND MUSICIAN

Please, put down your knife and stop kidding around.

PETER

Then have at you with my wit. I will dry-beat you with an iron wit and put up my iron dagger. Answer me like men.

PETER

So you don’t like my kidding around! I’ll kid you to death, and then I’ll put down my knife. Answer me like men.
(sings)
When griping grief the heart doth wound
And doleful dumps the mind oppress,
Then music with her silver sound—
(sings)
When sadness wounds your heart,
And pain takes over your mind,
Then music with her silver sound—
(speaks) Why “silver sound”? Why “music with her silver sound”? What say you, Simon Catling?
(speaks) Why the line “silver sound”? What do they mean, “music with her silver sound”? What do you say, Simon

Catling

Catling = a violin string

Catling
?

FIRST MUSICAN

120Marry, sir, because silver hath a sweet sound.

FIRST MUSICIAN

Well, sir, because silver has a sweet sound.

PETER

Prates.—What say you, Hugh Rebeck?

PETER

That’s a stupid answer! What do you say, Hugh

Rebeck

Rebeck = a fiddle

Rebeck
?

SECOND MUSICIAN

I say, “silver sound” because musicians sound for silver.

SECOND MUSICIAN

I say “silver sound,” because musicians play to earn silver.

PETER

Prates too.—What say you, James Soundpost?

PETER

Another studpid answer! What do you say, James

Soundpost

Soundpost = part of a violin

Soundpost
?

THIRD MUSICIAN

Faith, I know not what to say.

THIRD MUSICIAN

Well, I don’t know what to say.