A Midsummer Night's Dream

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A Midsummer Night's Dream, written in 1595 or 1596, is a romantic comedy by William Shakespeare.

Act I

  • Four days will quickly steep themselves in nights;
    Four nights will quickly dream away the time;
    And then the moon, like to a silver bow
    New bent in heaven, shall behold the night
    Of our solemnities.
    • Hippolyta, scene i
Simple: Four days will go by quickly, and then we will see the night when we wed.
About the quote: They are planning to get married, but the guy is very anxious
  • Ay me! for aught that I could ever read,
    Could ever hear by tale or history,
    The course of true love never did run smooth.
    • Lysander, scene i
Simple: For all I have ever read in history, true love never goes easily/smoothly
  • O, hell! to choose love by another’s eye.
    • Hermia, scene i


  • Swift as a shadow, short as any dream,
    Brief as the lightning in the collied night,
    That, in a spleen, unfolds both heaven and earth,
    And ere a man hath power to say, — Behold!
    The jaws of darkness do devour it up:
    So quick bright things come to confusion.
    • Lysander, scene i


  • Love looks not with the eyes, but with the mind,
    And therefore is wing'd Cupid painted blind.
    • Helena, scene i


  • Masters, spread yourselves.
    • Bottom, scene ii


  • This is Ercles’ vein.
    • Bottom, scene ii


  • I’ll speak in a monstrous little voice.
    • Bottom, scene ii


  • I am slow of study.
    • Snug, scene ii


  • That would hang us, every mother’s son.
    • All, scene ii


  • I will roar you as gently as any sucking dove; I will roar you, an ’twere any nightingale.
    • Bottom, scene ii


  • A proper man, as one shall see in a summer’s day.
    • Quince, scene ii


Act II

  • Over hill, over dale,
    Thorough bush, thorough briar,
    Over park, over pale,
    Thorough flood, thorough fire,
    I do wander everywhere,
    Swifter than the moon's sphere;
    And I serve the fairy queen,
    To dew her orbs upon the green.
    The cowslips tall her pensioners be;
    In their gold coats, spots you see;
    Those be rubies, fairy favours,
    In their freckles live our savours.
    I must go seek some dew-drops here,
    And hang a pearl in every cowslip's ear.
    Farewell, thou lob of spirits, I'll be gone;
    My queen and all her elves come here anon!
    • Fairy, scene i


  • The human mortals.
    • Titania, scene i


  • Once I sat upon a promontory,
    And heard a mermaid, on a dolphin's back,
    Uttering such dulcet and harmonious breath,
    That the rude sea grew civil at her song;
    And certain stars shot madly from their spheres,
    To hear the sea-maid’s music.
    • Oberon, scene i


  • And the imperial votaress passed on,
    In maiden meditation, fancy-free.
    Yet mark’d I where the bolt of Cupid fell:
    It fell upon a little western flower,
    Before, milk-white, now purple with love’s wound, —
    And maidens call it love-in-idleness.
    • Oberon, scene i


  • I’ll put a girdle round about the earth
    In forty minutes.
    • Puck, scene i


  • My heart
    Is true as steel.
    • Helena, scene i


  • I know a bank where the wild thyme blows,
    Where ox-lips and the nodding violet grows;
    Quite over-canopied with luscious woodbine,
    With sweet musk-roses and with eglantine.
    • Oberon, scene i


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