Who have we here? Rome's royal empress,
Unfurnish'd of her well-beseeming troop?
Or is it Dian, habited
Who hath abandoned her holy groves
To see the general hunting in this forest?
Saucy controller of our private steps!
Had I the power that some say Dian had,
Thy temples should be
With horns, as was Actaeon's; and the hounds
Should drive upon thy new-transformed
Unmannerly intruder as thou art!
Under your patience, gentle empress,
'Tis thought you have a goodly gift in horning;
And to be doubted
that your Moor and you
Are singled forth to try experiments:
Jove shield your husband from his hounds
'Tis pity they should take him for a stag.
Believe me, queen, your swarth Cimmerian
Doth make your honour of his body's hue,
Why are you sequester'd from all your train,
Dismounted from your snow-white goodly
And wander'd hither to an obscure plot,
Accompanied but with a barbarous Moor,
If foul desire had
not conducted you?
And, being intercepted in your sport,
Great reason that my noble lord be rated
For sauciness. I pray you,
let us hence,
And let her joy her raven-colour'd love;
This valley fits the purpose passing well.
The king my brother shall have note of this.
Ay, for these slips have made him noted long:
Good king, to be so mightily abused!
Why have I patience to endure all this?
Enter DEMETRIUS and CHIRON
How now, dear sovereign, and our gracious mother!
Why doth your highness look so pale and wan?
Have I not reason, think you, to look pale?
These two have 'ticed me hither to this place:
A barren detested
vale, you see it is;
The trees, though summer, yet forlorn and lean,
O'ercome with moss and baleful mistletoe:
never shines the sun; here nothing breeds,
Unless the nightly owl or fatal raven:
And when they show'd
me this abhorred pit,
They told me, here, at dead time of the night,
A thousand fiends, a thousand hissing
Ten thousand swelling toads, as many urchins,
Would make such fearful and confused cries
any mortal body hearing it
Should straight fall mad, or else die suddenly.
No sooner had they told this
But straight they told me they would bind me here
Unto the body of a dismal yew,
me to this miserable death:
And then they call'd me foul adulteress,
Lascivious Goth, and all the bitterest
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