ACT V
Scene I.
 

The park

Enter HOLOFERNES, SIR NATHANIEL, and DULL

HOLOFERNES
Satis quod sufficit.

NATHANIEL
I praise God for you, sir. Your reasons at dinner have
been sharp and sententious; pleasant without scurrility, witty
without affection, audacious without impudency, learned without
opinion, and strange without heresy. I did converse this quondam
day with a companion of the King's who is intituled, nominated,
or called, Don Adriano de Armado.

HOLOFERNES
Novi hominem tanquam te. His humour is lofty, his
discourse peremptory, his tongue filed, his eye ambitious, his
gait majestical and his general behaviour vain, ridiculous, and
thrasonical. He is too picked, too spruce, too affected, too odd,
as it were, too peregrinate, as I may call it.

NATHANIEL
A most singular and choice epithet.

[Draws out his table-book]

HOLOFERNES
He draweth out the thread of his verbosity finer than
the staple of his argument. I abhor such fanatical phantasimes,
such insociable and point-devise companions; such rackers of
orthography, as to speak 'dout' fine, when he should say 'doubt';
'det' when he should pronounce 'debt'- d, e, b, t, not d, e, t.
He clepeth a calf 'cauf,' half 'hauf'; neighbour vocatur
'nebour'; 'neigh' abbreviated 'ne.' This is abhominable- which he
would call 'abbominable.' It insinuateth me of insanie: ne
intelligis, domine? to make frantic, lunatic.

NATHANIEL
Laus Deo, bone intelligo.

HOLOFERNES
'Bone'?- 'bone' for 'bene.' Priscian a little
scratch'd; 'twill serve.

Enter ARMADO, MOTH, and COSTARD

NATHANIEL
Videsne quis venit?

HOLOFERNES
Video, et gaudeo.

ARMADO
[To MOTH] Chirrah!

HOLOFERNES
Quare 'chirrah,' not 'sirrah'?

ARMADO
Men of peace, well encount'red.

HOLOFERNES
Most military sir, salutation.

MOTH
[Aside to COSTARD] They have been at a great feast of
languages and stol'n the scraps.

COSTARD
O, they have liv'd long on the alms-basket of words. I
marvel thy master hath not eaten thee for a word, for thou are
not so long by the head as honorificabilitudinitatibus; thou art
easier swallowed than a flap-dragon.

MOTH
Peace! the peal begins.

ARMADO
[To HOLOFERNES] Monsieur, are you not lett'red?

MOTH
Yes, yes; he teaches boys the hornbook. What is a, b, spelt
backward with the horn on his head?

HOLOFERNES
Ba, pueritia, with a horn added.

MOTH
Ba, most silly sheep with a horn. You hear his learning.

HOLOFERNES
Quis, quis, thou consonant?

MOTH
The third of the five vowels, if You repeat them; or the
fifth, if I.

HOLOFERNES
I will repeat them: a, e, i-

MOTH
The sheep; the other two concludes it: o, u.

ARMADO
Now, by the salt wave of the Mediterraneum, a sweet touch,
a quick venue of wit- snip, snap, quick and home. It rejoiceth my
intellect. True wit!

MOTH
Offer'd by a child to an old man; which is wit-old.

HOLOFERNES
What is the figure? What is the figure?

MOTH
Horns.

HOLOFERNES
Thou disputes like an infant; go whip thy gig.

MOTH
Lend me your horn to make one, and I will whip about your
infamy circum circa- a gig of a cuckold's horn.

COSTARD
An I had but one penny in the world, thou shouldst have it
to buy ginger-bread. Hold, there is the very remuneration I had
of thy master, thou halfpenny purse of wit, thou pigeon-egg of
discretion. O, an the heavens were so pleased that thou wert but
my bastard, what a joyful father wouldst thou make me! Go to;
thou hast it ad dunghill, at the fingers' ends, as they say.

HOLOFERNES
O, I smell false Latin; 'dunghill' for unguem.

ARMADO
Arts-man, preambulate; we will be singuled from the
barbarous. Do you not educate youth at the charge-house on the
top of the mountain?

HOLOFERNES
Or mons, the hill.

ARMADO
At your sweet pleasure, for the mountain.

HOLOFERNES
I do, sans question.

ARMADO
Sir, it is the King's most sweet pleasure and affection to
congratulate the Princess at her pavilion, in the posteriors of
this day; which the rude multitude call the afternoon.

HOLOFERNES
The posterior of the day, most generous sir, is liable,
congruent, and measurable, for the afternoon. The word is well
cull'd, chose, sweet, and apt, I do assure you, sir, I do assure.

ARMADO
Sir, the King is a noble gentleman, and my familiar, I do
assure ye, very good friend. For what is inward between us, let
it pass. I do beseech thee, remember thy courtesy. I beseech
thee, apparel thy head. And among other importunate and most
serious designs, and of great import indeed, too- but let that
pass; for I must tell thee it will please his Grace, by the
world, sometime to lean upon my poor shoulder, and with his royal
finger thus dally with my excrement, with my mustachio; but,
sweet heart, let that pass. By the world, I recount no fable:
some certain special honours it pleaseth his greatness to impart
to Armado, a soldier, a man of travel, that hath seen the world;
but let that pass. The very all of all is- but, sweet heart, I do
implore secrecy- that the King would have me present the
Princess, sweet chuck, with some delightful ostentation, or show,
or pageant, or antic, or firework. Now, understanding that the
curate and your sweet self are good at such eruptions and sudden
breaking-out of mirth, as it were, I have acquainted you withal,
to the end to crave your assistance.

HOLOFERNES
Sir, you shall present before her the Nine Worthies.
Sir Nathaniel, as concerning some entertainment of time, some
show in the posterior of this day, to be rend'red by our
assistance, the King's command, and this most gallant,
illustrate, and learned gentleman, before the Princess- I say
none so fit as to present the Nine Worthies.

NATHANIEL
Where will you find men worthy enough to present them?

HOLOFERNES
Joshua, yourself; myself, Alexander; this gallant
gentleman, Judas Maccabaeus; this swain, because of his great
limb or joint, shall pass Pompey the Great; the page, Hercules.

ARMADO
Pardon, sir; error: he is not quantity enough for that
Worthy's thumb; he is not so big as the end of his club.

HOLOFERNES
Shall I have audience? He shall present Hercules in
minority: his enter and exit shall be strangling a snake; and I
will have an apology for that purpose.

MOTH
An excellent device! So, if any of the audience hiss, you may
cry 'Well done, Hercules; now thou crushest the snake!' That is
the way to make an offence gracious, though few have the grace to
do it.

ARMADO
For the rest of the Worthies?

HOLOFERNES
I will play three myself.

MOTH
Thrice-worthy gentleman!

ARMADO
Shall I tell you a thing?

HOLOFERNES
We attend.

ARMADO
We will have, if this fadge not, an antic. I beseech you,
follow.

HOLOFERNES
Via, goodman Dull! Thou has spoken no word all this
while.

DULL
Nor understood none neither, sir.

HOLOFERNES
Allons! we will employ thee.

DULL
I'll make one in a dance, or so, or I will play
On the tabor to the Worthies, and let them dance the hay.

HOLOFERNES
Most dull, honest Dull! To our sport, away.

Exeunt