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As You Like It
Act 1, scene 2

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Characters in the Play

Entire Play

In As You Like It, witty words and romance play out against the disputes of divided pairs of brothers. Orlando’s older…

Act 1, scene 1

Orlando demands that his elder brother Oliver give him part of the money left by their father. Oliver decides to…

Act 1, scene 2

Orlando wins the wrestling match and, at the same time, wins the heart of Rosalind, daughter of the legitimate duke,…

Act 1, scene 3

Duke Frederick suddenly decides to banish Rosalind. His daughter Celia, determined to go with Rosalind into exile, suggests that they…

Act 2, scene 1

In the Forest of Arden, the banished duke (Duke Senior) and the courtiers who share his exile discuss their life…

Act 2, scene 2

Duke Frederick, discovering Celia’s disappearance, suspects Orlando. He sends servants to bring Orlando to court.

Act 2, scene 3

Orlando learns from Adam, an old servant, that Oliver plans to kill Orlando. Adam and Orlando decide to go in…

Act 2, scene 4

Rosalind, Celia, and Touchstone reach the Forest of Arden. Rosalind is in disguise as a boy named Ganymede and Celia…

Act 2, scene 5

Amiens’ song celebrating life in the woods is mocked by Jaques’ parody of the song.

Act 2, scene 6

Orlando leaves Adam, near starvation, under a tree and goes off determined to find food.

Act 2, scene 7

As Duke Senior and his companions sit down to eat, Orlando enters, demanding food. Welcomed by the duke, he brings…

Act 3, scene 1

Duke Frederick gives Oliver one year to produce Orlando. In the interim, he seizes Oliver’s lands.

Act 3, scene 2

Orlando hangs poems in praise of Rosalind on trees in the forest, where Rosalind and Celia find them. In disguise…

Act 3, scene 3

Touchstone, desiring a goat-keeper named Audrey, has arranged for a country priest to marry them in the woods. Jaques persuades…

Act 3, scene 4

Corin invites “Ganymede” and “Aliena” to observe the lovelorn Silvius as Silvius courts the disdainful Phoebe.

Act 3, scene 5

“Ganymede” intervenes to try to help Silvius prevail over Phoebe and win her love. Instead, Phoebe falls in love with…

Act 4, scene 1

Rosalind, as Ganymede, pretends to be Rosalind while Orlando courts her. With Celia as priest, they go through the beginning…

Act 4, scene 2

Duke Senior’s courtiers celebrate their having killed a deer.

Act 4, scene 3

Phoebe sends “Ganymede” a letter offering herself in marriage. As Rosalind and Celia wait for Orlando, they learn that he…

Act 5, scene 1

Touchstone verbally overpowers William, a rival for Audrey’s love.

Act 5, scene 2

Orlando, envious that his brother Oliver and “Aliena,” having fallen in love, plan to be married immediately, tells “Ganymede” how…

Act 5, scene 3

Touchstone and Audrey listen while two pages sing.

Act 5, scene 4

In the presence of Duke Senior and his lords, “Ganymede” reminds Orlando, Silvius, and Phoebe of their promises. “He” and…

Act 5, epilogue

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Scene 2
Enter Rosalind and Celia.

CELIA I pray thee, Rosalind, sweet my coz, be merry.
ROSALIND Dear Celia, I show more mirth than I am
 mistress of, and would you yet I were merrier?
 Unless you could teach me to forget a banished
5 father, you must not learn me how to remember
 any extraordinary pleasure.
CELIA Herein I see thou lov’st me not with the full
 weight that I love thee. If my uncle, thy banished
 father, had banished thy uncle, the Duke my father,
10 so thou hadst been still with me, I could have taught
 my love to take thy father for mine. So wouldst thou,
 if the truth of thy love to me were so righteously
 tempered as mine is to thee.
ROSALIND Well, I will forget the condition of my estate
15 to rejoice in yours.

19
As You Like It
ACT 1. SC. 2

CELIA You know my father hath no child but I, nor
 none is like to have; and truly, when he dies, thou
 shalt be his heir, for what he hath taken away from
 thy father perforce, I will render thee again in
20 affection. By mine honor I will, and when I break
 that oath, let me turn monster. Therefore, my sweet
 Rose, my dear Rose, be merry.
ROSALIND From henceforth I will, coz, and devise
 sports. Let me see—what think you of falling in
25 love?
CELIA Marry, I prithee do, to make sport withal; but
 love no man in good earnest, nor no further in
 sport neither than with safety of a pure blush thou
 mayst in honor come off again.
ROSALIND 30What shall be our sport, then?
CELIA Let us sit and mock the good housewife Fortune
 from her wheel, that her gifts may henceforth be
 bestowed equally.
ROSALIND I would we could do so, for her benefits are
35 mightily misplaced, and the bountiful blind woman
 doth most mistake in her gifts to women.
CELIA ’Tis true, for those that she makes fair she scarce
 makes honest, and those that she makes honest she
 makes very ill-favoredly.
ROSALIND 40Nay, now thou goest from Fortune’s office to
 Nature’s. Fortune reigns in gifts of the world, not in
 the lineaments of nature.
CELIA No? When Nature hath made a fair creature,
 may she not by fortune fall into the fire?

Enter Touchstone.

45 Though Nature hath given us wit to flout at Fortune,
 hath not Fortune sent in this fool to cut off the
 argument?

21
As You Like It
ACT 1. SC. 2

ROSALIND Indeed, there is Fortune too hard for Nature,
 when Fortune makes Nature’s natural the
50 cutter-off of Nature’s wit.
CELIA Peradventure this is not Fortune’s work neither,
 but Nature’s, who perceiveth our natural wits too
 dull to reason of such goddesses, and hath sent
 this natural for our whetstone, for always the dullness
55 of the fool is the whetstone of the wits. To
 Touchstone. 
How now, wit, whither wander you?
TOUCHSTONE Mistress, you must come away to your
 father.
CELIA Were you made the messenger?
TOUCHSTONE 60No, by mine honor, but I was bid to come
 for you.
ROSALIND Where learned you that oath, fool?
TOUCHSTONE Of a certain knight that swore by his
 honor they were good pancakes, and swore by his
65 honor the mustard was naught. Now, I’ll stand to it,
 the pancakes were naught and the mustard was
 good, and yet was not the knight forsworn.
CELIA How prove you that in the great heap of your
 knowledge?
ROSALIND 70Ay, marry, now unmuzzle your wisdom.
TOUCHSTONE Stand you both forth now: stroke your
 chins, and swear by your beards that I am a knave.
CELIA By our beards (if we had them), thou art.
TOUCHSTONE By my knavery (if I had it), then I were.
75 But if you swear by that that is not, you are not
 forsworn. No more was this knight swearing by his
 honor, for he never had any, or if he had, he had
 sworn it away before ever he saw those pancakes or
 that mustard.
CELIA 80Prithee, who is ’t that thou mean’st?
TOUCHSTONE One that old Frederick, your father, loves.
CELIA My father’s love is enough to honor him.

23
As You Like It
ACT 1. SC. 2

 Enough. Speak no more of him; you’ll be whipped
 for taxation one of these days.
TOUCHSTONE 85The more pity that fools may not speak
 wisely what wise men do foolishly.
CELIA By my troth, thou sayest true. For, since the little
 wit that fools have was silenced, the little foolery
 that wise men have makes a great show. Here
90 comes Monsieur Le Beau.

Enter Le Beau.

ROSALIND With his mouth full of news.
CELIA Which he will put on us as pigeons feed their
 young.
ROSALIND Then shall we be news-crammed.
CELIA 95All the better. We shall be the more
 marketable.—Bonjour, Monsieur Le Beau. What’s
 the news?
LE BEAU Fair princess, you have lost much good sport.
CELIA Sport? Of what color?
LE BEAU 100What color, madam? How shall I answer you?
ROSALIND As wit and fortune will.
TOUCHSTONE Or as the destinies decrees.
CELIA Well said. That was laid on with a trowel.
TOUCHSTONE Nay, if I keep not my rank—
ROSALIND 105Thou losest thy old smell.
LE BEAU You amaze me, ladies. I would have told you of
 good wrestling, which you have lost the sight of.
ROSALIND Yet tell us the manner of the wrestling.
LE BEAU I will tell you the beginning, and if it please
110 your Ladyships, you may see the end, for the best is
 yet to do, and here, where you are, they are coming
 to perform it.
CELIA Well, the beginning that is dead and buried.
LE BEAU There comes an old man and his three sons—
CELIA 115I could match this beginning with an old tale.

25
As You Like It
ACT 1. SC. 2

LE BEAU Three proper young men of excellent growth
 and presence.
ROSALIND With bills on their necks: “Be it known unto
 all men by these presents.”
LE BEAU 120The eldest of the three wrestled with Charles,
 the Duke’s wrestler, which Charles in a moment
 threw him and broke three of his ribs, that there is
 little hope of life in him. So he served the second,
 and so the third. Yonder they lie, the poor old man
125 their father making such pitiful dole over them that
 all the beholders take his part with weeping.
ROSALIND Alas!
TOUCHSTONE But what is the sport, monsieur, that the
 ladies have lost?
LE BEAU 130Why, this that I speak of.
TOUCHSTONE Thus men may grow wiser every day. It is
 the first time that ever I heard breaking of ribs was
 sport for ladies.
CELIA Or I, I promise thee.
ROSALIND 135But is there any else longs to see this broken
 music in his sides? Is there yet another dotes upon
 rib-breaking? Shall we see this wrestling, cousin?
LE BEAU You must if you stay here, for here is the place
 appointed for the wrestling, and they are ready to
140 perform it.
CELIA Yonder sure they are coming. Let us now stay
 and see it.

Flourish. Enter Duke Frederick, Lords, Orlando,
Charles, and Attendants.


DUKE FREDERICK Come on. Since the youth will not be
 entreated, his own peril on his forwardness.
ROSALIND, to Le Beau 145Is yonder the man?
LE BEAU Even he, madam.
CELIA Alas, he is too young. Yet he looks successfully.

27
As You Like It
ACT 1. SC. 2

DUKE FREDERICK How now, daughter and cousin? Are
 you crept hither to see the wrestling?
ROSALIND 150Ay, my liege, so please you give us leave.
DUKE FREDERICK You will take little delight in it, I can
 tell you, there is such odds in the man. In pity of the
 challenger’s youth, I would fain dissuade him, but
 he will not be entreated. Speak to him, ladies; see if
155 you can move him.
CELIA Call him hither, good Monsieur Le Beau.
DUKE FREDERICK Do so. I’ll not be by.
He steps aside.
LE BEAU, to Orlando Monsieur the challenger, the
 Princess calls for you.
ORLANDO 160I attend them with all respect and duty.
ROSALIND Young man, have you challenged Charles the
 wrestler?
ORLANDO No, fair princess. He is the general challenger.
 I come but in as others do, to try with him the
165 strength of my youth.
CELIA Young gentleman, your spirits are too bold for
 your years. You have seen cruel proof of this man’s
 strength. If you saw yourself with your eyes or knew
 yourself with your judgment, the fear of your adventure
170 would counsel you to a more equal enterprise.
 We pray you for your own sake to embrace your
 own safety and give over this attempt.
ROSALIND Do, young sir. Your reputation shall not
 therefore be misprized. We will make it our suit to
175 the Duke that the wrestling might not go forward.
ORLANDO I beseech you, punish me not with your hard
 thoughts, wherein I confess me much guilty to deny
 so fair and excellent ladies anything. But let your
 fair eyes and gentle wishes go with me to my trial,
180 wherein, if I be foiled, there is but one shamed that
 was never gracious; if killed, but one dead that is
 willing to be so. I shall do my friends no wrong, for

29
As You Like It
ACT 1. SC. 2

 I have none to lament me; the world no injury, for
 in it I have nothing. Only in the world I fill up a
185 place which may be better supplied when I have
 made it empty.
ROSALIND The little strength that I have, I would it
 were with you.
CELIA And mine, to eke out hers.
ROSALIND 190Fare you well. Pray heaven I be deceived in
 you.
CELIA Your heart’s desires be with you.
CHARLES Come, where is this young gallant that is so
 desirous to lie with his mother Earth?
ORLANDO 195Ready, sir; but his will hath in it a more
 modest working.
DUKE FREDERICK, coming forward You shall try but
 one fall.
CHARLES No, I warrant your Grace you shall not entreat
200 him to a second, that have so mightily persuaded
 him from a first.
ORLANDO You mean to mock me after, you should not
 have mocked me before. But come your ways.
ROSALIND Now Hercules be thy speed, young man!
CELIA 205I would I were invisible, to catch the strong
 fellow by the leg.
Orlando and Charles wrestle.
ROSALIND O excellent young man!
CELIA If I had a thunderbolt in mine eye, I can tell who
 should down.
Orlando throws Charles. Shout.
DUKE FREDERICK 210No more, no more.
ORLANDO Yes, I beseech your Grace. I am not yet well
 breathed.
DUKE FREDERICK How dost thou, Charles?
LE BEAU He cannot speak, my lord.
DUKE FREDERICK 215Bear him away.
Charles is carried off by Attendants.
 What is thy name, young man?

31
As You Like It
ACT 1. SC. 2

ORLANDO Orlando, my liege, the youngest son of Sir
 Rowland de Boys.
DUKE FREDERICK 
 I would thou hadst been son to some man else.
220 The world esteemed thy father honorable,
 But I did find him still mine enemy.
 Thou shouldst have better pleased me with this
 deed
 Hadst thou descended from another house.
225 But fare thee well. Thou art a gallant youth.
 I would thou hadst told me of another father.
Duke exits with Touchstone, Le Beau,
Lords, and Attendants.

CELIA, to Rosalind 
 Were I my father, coz, would I do this?
ORLANDO 
 I am more proud to be Sir Rowland’s son,
 His youngest son, and would not change that calling
230 To be adopted heir to Frederick.
ROSALIND, to Celia 
 My father loved Sir Rowland as his soul,
 And all the world was of my father’s mind.
 Had I before known this young man his son,
 I should have given him tears unto entreaties
235 Ere he should thus have ventured.
CELIA  Gentle cousin,
 Let us go thank him and encourage him.
 My father’s rough and envious disposition
 Sticks me at heart.—Sir, you have well deserved.
240 If you do keep your promises in love
 But justly, as you have exceeded all promise,
 Your mistress shall be happy.
ROSALIND, giving Orlando a chain from her neck 
 Gentleman,
 Wear this for me—one out of suits with Fortune,

33
As You Like It
ACT 1. SC. 2

245 That could give more but that her hand lacks
 means.—
 Shall we go, coz?
CELIA  Ay.—Fare you well, fair gentleman.
ORLANDO, aside 
 Can I not say “I thank you”? My better parts
250 Are all thrown down, and that which here stands up
 Is but a quintain, a mere lifeless block.
ROSALIND, to Celia 
 He calls us back. My pride fell with my fortunes.
 I’ll ask him what he would.—Did you call, sir?
 Sir, you have wrestled well and overthrown
255 More than your enemies.
CELIA Will you go, coz?
ROSALIND Have with you. To Orlando. Fare you well.
Rosalind and Celia exit.
ORLANDO 
 What passion hangs these weights upon my tongue?
 I cannot speak to her, yet she urged conference.
260 O poor Orlando! Thou art overthrown.
 Or Charles or something weaker masters thee.

Enter Le Beau.

LE BEAU 
 Good sir, I do in friendship counsel you
 To leave this place. Albeit you have deserved
 High commendation, true applause, and love,
265 Yet such is now the Duke’s condition
 That he misconsters all that you have done.
 The Duke is humorous. What he is indeed
 More suits you to conceive than I to speak of.
ORLANDO 
 I thank you, sir, and pray you tell me this:
270 Which of the two was daughter of the duke
 That here was at the wrestling?

35
As You Like It
ACT 1. SC. 3

LE BEAU 
 Neither his daughter, if we judge by manners,
 But yet indeed the smaller is his daughter.
 The other is daughter to the banished duke,
275 And here detained by her usurping uncle
 To keep his daughter company, whose loves
 Are dearer than the natural bond of sisters.
 But I can tell you that of late this duke
 Hath ta’en displeasure ’gainst his gentle niece,
280 Grounded upon no other argument
 But that the people praise her for her virtues
 And pity her for her good father’s sake;
 And, on my life, his malice ’gainst the lady
 Will suddenly break forth. Sir, fare you well.
285 Hereafter, in a better world than this,
 I shall desire more love and knowledge of you.
ORLANDO 
 I rest much bounden to you. Fare you well.
Le Beau exits.
 Thus must I from the smoke into the smother,
 From tyrant duke unto a tyrant brother.
290 But heavenly Rosalind!
He exits.