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As You Like It
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Last updated: Fri, Jul 31, 2015
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Navigate this workAs You Like It
Act 2, scene 3
Orlando learns from Adam, an old servant, that Oliver plans to kill Orlando. Adam and Orlando decide to go in search of a new life.Enter Orlando and Adam, ⌜meeting.⌝
ORLANDO 0700 Who’s there?
0701 What, my young master, O my gentle master,
0702 O my sweet master, O you memory
0703 Of old Sir Rowland! Why, what make you here?
0704 5 Why are you virtuous? Why do people love you?
0705 And wherefore are you gentle, strong, and valiant?
0706 Why would you be so fond to overcome
0707 The bonny prizer of the humorous duke?
0708 Your praise is come too swiftly home before you.
0709 10 Know you not, master, to ⌜some⌝ kind of men
0710 Their graces serve them but as enemies?
0711 No more do yours. Your virtues, gentle master,
0712 Are sanctified and holy traitors to you.
p. 570713 O, what a world is this when what is comely
0714 15 Envenoms him that bears it!
⌜ORLANDO⌝ 0715 Why, what’s the matter?
ADAM 0716 O unhappy youth,
0717 Come not within these doors. Within this roof
0718 The enemy of all your graces lives.
0719 20 Your brother—no, no brother—yet the son—
0720 Yet not the son, I will not call him son—
0721 Of him I was about to call his father,
0722 Hath heard your praises, and this night he means
0723 To burn the lodging where you use to lie,
0724 25 And you within it. If he fail of that,
0725 He will have other means to cut you off.
0726 I overheard him and his practices.
0727 This is no place, this house is but a butchery.
0728 Abhor it, fear it, do not enter it.
0729 30 Why, whither, Adam, wouldst thou have me go?
0730 No matter whither, so you come not here.
0731 What, wouldst thou have me go and beg my food,
0732 Or with a base and boist’rous sword enforce
0733 A thievish living on the common road?
0734 35 This I must do, or know not what to do;
0735 Yet this I will not do, do how I can.
0736 I rather will subject me to the malice
0737 Of a diverted blood and bloody brother.
0738 But do not so. I have five hundred crowns,
0739 40 The thrifty hire I saved under your father,
0740 Which I did store to be my foster nurse
0741 When service should in my old limbs lie lame,
0742 And unregarded age in corners thrown.
0743 Take that, and He that doth the ravens feed,
0744 45 Yea, providently caters for the sparrow,
p. 590745 Be comfort to my age. Here is the gold.
0746 All this I give you. Let me be your servant.
0747 Though I look old, yet I am strong and lusty,
0748 For in my youth I never did apply
0749 50 Hot and rebellious liquors in my blood,
0750 Nor did not with unbashful forehead woo
0751 The means of weakness and debility.
0752 Therefore my age is as a lusty winter,
0753 Frosty but kindly. Let me go with you.
0754 55 I’ll do the service of a younger man
0755 In all your business and necessities.
0756 O good old man, how well in thee appears
0757 The constant service of the antique world,
0758 When service sweat for duty, not for meed.
0759 60 Thou art not for the fashion of these times,
0760 Where none will sweat but for promotion,
0761 And having that do choke their service up
0762 Even with the having. It is not so with thee.
0763 But, poor old man, thou prun’st a rotten tree
0764 65 That cannot so much as a blossom yield
0765 In lieu of all thy pains and husbandry.
0766 But come thy ways. We’ll go along together,
0767 And ere we have thy youthful wages spent,
0768 We’ll light upon some settled low content.
0769 70 Master, go on, and I will follow thee
0770 To the last gasp with truth and loyalty.
0771 From ⌜seventeen⌝ years till now almost fourscore
0772 Here livèd I, but now live here no more.
0773 At seventeen years, many their fortunes seek,
0774 75 But at fourscore, it is too late a week.
0775 Yet fortune cannot recompense me better
0776 Than to die well, and not my master’s debtor.