1. Scene I. Leonato's Garden.
No; rather I will go to Benedick,
And counsel him to fight against his passion.
And, truly, I'll devise some honest slanders
To stain my cousin with. One doth not know
How much an ill word may empoison liking.
O! do not do your cousin such a wrong.
She cannot be so much without true judgment,--
Having so swift and excellent a wit
As she is priz'd to have,--as to refuse
So rare a gentleman as Signior Benedick.
He is the only man of Italy,
Always excepted my dear Claudio.
I pray you, be not angry with me, madam,
Speaking my fancy: Signior Benedick,
For shape, for bearing, argument and valour,
Goes foremost in report through Italy.
Indeed, he hath an excellent good name.
His excellence did earn it, ere he had it.
When are you married, madam?
Why, every day, to-morrow. Come, go in:
I'll show thee some attires, and have thy counsel
Which is the best to furnish me to-morrow.
She's lim'd, I warrant you: we have caught her, madam.
If it prove so, then loving goes by haps:
Some Cupid kills with arrows, some with traps.
[Exeunt HERO and URSULA.]
[Advancing.] What fire is in mine ears? Can this be true?
Stand I condemn'd for pride and scorn so much?
Contempt, farewell! and maiden pride, adieu!
No glory lives behind the back of such.
And, Benedick, love on; I will requite thee,
Taming my wild heart to thy loving hand:
If thou dost love, my kindness shall incite thee
To bind our loves up in a holy band;
For others say thou dost deserve, and I
Believe it better than reportingly.