List iconAs You Like It:
Act 2, scene 1
List icon

As You Like It
Act 2, scene 1



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 1
Enter Duke Senior, Amiens, and two or three Lords, like

 Now, my co-mates and brothers in exile,
 Hath not old custom made this life more sweet
 Than that of painted pomp? Are not these woods
 More free from peril than the envious court?
5 Here feel we not the penalty of Adam,
 The seasons’ difference, as the icy fang
 And churlish chiding of the winter’s wind,
 Which when it bites and blows upon my body
 Even till I shrink with cold, I smile and say
10 “This is no flattery. These are counselors
 That feelingly persuade me what I am.”
 Sweet are the uses of adversity,
 Which, like the toad, ugly and venomous,
 Wears yet a precious jewel in his head.
15 And this our life, exempt from public haunt,
 Finds tongues in trees, books in the running brooks,
 Sermons in stones, and good in everything.
 I would not change it. Happy is your Grace,
 That can translate the stubbornness of fortune
20 Into so quiet and so sweet a style.

As You Like It
ACT 2. SC. 1

 Come, shall we go and kill us venison?
 And yet it irks me the poor dappled fools,
 Being native burghers of this desert city,
 Should in their own confines with forkèd heads
25 Have their round haunches gored.
FIRST LORD  Indeed, my lord,
 The melancholy Jaques grieves at that,
 And in that kind swears you do more usurp
 Than doth your brother that hath banished you.
30 Today my Lord of Amiens and myself
 Did steal behind him as he lay along
 Under an oak, whose antique root peeps out
 Upon the brook that brawls along this wood;
 To the which place a poor sequestered stag
35 That from the hunter’s aim had ta’en a hurt
 Did come to languish. And indeed, my lord,
 The wretched animal heaved forth such groans
 That their discharge did stretch his leathern coat
 Almost to bursting, and the big round tears
40 Coursed one another down his innocent nose
 In piteous chase. And thus the hairy fool,
 Much markèd of the melancholy Jaques,
 Stood on th’ extremest verge of the swift brook,
 Augmenting it with tears.
DUKE SENIOR 45 But what said Jaques?
 Did he not moralize this spectacle?
 O yes, into a thousand similes.
 First, for his weeping into the needless stream:
 “Poor deer,” quoth he, “thou mak’st a testament
50 As worldlings do, giving thy sum of more
 To that which had too much. Then, being there
 Left and abandoned of his velvet friends:
 “’Tis right,” quoth he. “Thus misery doth part

As You Like It
ACT 2. SC. 2

55 The flux of company.” Anon a careless herd,
 Full of the pasture, jumps along by him
 And never stays to greet him. “Ay,” quoth Jaques,
 “Sweep on, you fat and greasy citizens.
 ’Tis just the fashion. Wherefore do you look
60 Upon that poor and broken bankrupt there?”
 Thus most invectively he pierceth through
 The body of country, city, court,
 Yea, and of this our life, swearing that we
 Are mere usurpers, tyrants, and what’s worse,
65 To fright the animals and to kill them up
 In their assigned and native dwelling place.
 And did you leave him in this contemplation?
 We did, my lord, weeping and commenting
 Upon the sobbing deer.
DUKE SENIOR 70 Show me the place.
 I love to cope him in these sullen fits,
 For then he’s full of matter.
FIRST LORD I’ll bring you to him straight.
They exit.