Twelfth Night

by: William Shakespeare

Act 3 Scene 1

page Act 3 Scene 1 Page 1

Original Text

Modern Text

Enter VIOLA, and the FOOL playing with a tabor
VIOLA and the FOOL, playing a drum, enter.

VIOLA

Save thee, friend, and thy music. Dost thou live by thy tabour?

VIOLA

God bless you, my friend, and your music too. Do you make your living by playing that drum?

FOOL

No, sir, I live by the church.

FOOL

No, sir, I live by the church.

VIOLA

Art thou a churchman?

VIOLA

Oh, you’re a clergyman?

FOOL

5No such matter, sir. I do live by the church; for I do live at my house, and my house doth stand by the church.

FOOL

No, I live by the church because I live in a house, and my house is by the church.

VIOLA

So thou mayst say the king lies by a beggar if a beggar dwell near him, or the church stands by thy tabor, if thy tabor stand by the church.

VIOLA

You could just as easily say that a king sleeps near a beggar if the beggar lives near him, or that the church is supported by your drum because it “stands by” your drum.

FOOL

10You have said, sir. To see this age! A sentence is but a cheveril glove to a good wit. How quickly the wrong side may be turned outward!

FOOL

You’re right, sir. What a wonderful time to be alive! Sentences can be turned inside out so easily nowadays!

VIOLA

Nay, that’s certain. They that dally nicely with words may quickly make them wanton.

VIOLA

That’s true. People who fool around with words too much can make words act like whores—changing all the time, and immoral too.

FOOL

15I would therefore my sister had no name, sir.

FOOL

That’s why I wish my sister didn’t have a name, sir.

VIOLA

Why, man?

VIOLA

Why, man?