Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” through art
Lord, what fools these mortals be!
— Puck over the trials of Helena, Hermia, Lysander, and Demetrius (3.2.115)
Pyramus is a sweet-faced man; a proper man, as one shall see in a summer’s day.
— Peter Quince trying to convince Nick Bottom to play Pyramus (1.2.89)
Puck. How now, spirit! whither wander you?
fairy Over hill, over dale,
Thorough bush, thorough brier,
Over park, over pale,
Thorough flood, thorough fire,
I do wander everywhere,
Swifter than the moone’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 those freckles live their savours:
I must go seek some dew-drops here,
And hang a pearl in every cowslip’s ear.
— a fairy answers Puck’s question (2.1.1)
I know a bank where the wild thyme blows,
Where oxlips and the nodding violet grows,
Quite over-canopied with luscious woodbine,
With sweet musk-roses and with eglantine.
— Oberon’s description of Titania’s bower (2.1.249)
If we shadows have offended,
Think but this, and all is mended,
That you have but slumbered here
While these visions did appear.
— from Puck’s epilogue (5.2.54)