MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING
A monologue from Act II, Scene iii
by: William Shakespeare
|NOTE: Much Ado About Nothing was first published in 1600. It is now a public domain work and may be performed without royalties.
BENEDICK: This can be no trick. The conference was sadly
borne; they have the truth of this from Hero; they seem to pity
the lady. It seems her affections have their full bent. Love
me? Why, it must be requited. I hear how I am censured. They
say I will bear myself proudly if I perceive the love come from
her. They say too that she will rather die than give any sign
of affection. I did never think to marry. I must not seem proud.
Happy are they that hear their detractions and can put them to
mending. They say the lady is fair -- 'tis a truth, I can bear
them witness; and virtuous -- 'tis so, I cannot reprove it; and
wise, but for loving me -- by my troth, it is no addition to
her wit, nor no great argument of her folly, for I will be horribly
in love with her. I may chance have some odd quirks and remnants
of wit broken on me because I have railed so long against marriage.
But doth not the appetite alter? A man loves the meat in his
youth that he cannot endure in his age. Shall quips and sentences
and these paper bullets of the brain awe a man from the career
of his humor? No, the world must be peopled. When I said I would
die a bachelor, I did not think I should live till I were married.
Here comes Beatrice. By this day, she's a fair lady! I do spy
some marks of love in her.