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As You Like It

As You Like It Translation Act 1, Scene 1

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Enter ORLANDO and ADAM

ORLANDO

As I remember, Adam, it was upon this fashion bequeathed me by will but poor a thousand crowns, and, as thou sayest, charged my brother on his blessing to breed me well. And there begins my sadness. My brother Jacques he keeps at school, and report speaks goldenly of his profit. For my part, he keeps me rustically at home or, to speak more properly, stays me here at home unkept; for call you that “keeping” for a gentleman of my birth that differs not from the stalling of an ox? His horses are bred better, for, besides that they are fair with their feeding, they are taught their manage and, to that end, riders dearly hired. But I, his brother, gain nothing under him but growth, for the which his animals on his dunghills are as much bound to him as I. Besides this nothing that he so plentifully gives me, the something that nature gave me his countenance seems to take from me. He lets me feed with his hinds, bars me the place of a brother, and, as much as in him lies, mines my gentility with my education. This is it, Adam, that grieves me, and the spirit of my father, which I think is within me, begins to mutiny against this servitude. I will no longer endure it, though yet I know no wise remedy how to avoid it.

ORLANDO

As I remember it, Adam, in my father's will I was left only a thousand crowns. And, as you say, my father gave my older brother Oliver the responsibility of taking care of me. And that is the source of my sadness. My other brother Jacques is away at school, and they say that he is profiting greatly from his education. But for my part, my brother insists that I stay here at home like a peasant. He is supposed to maintain me like a gentleman, but instead he treats me like an ox in a stall. My brother's horses are treated better than I am—at least they get training and riders along with their food. But I, his brother, get nothing from him but food and shelter. So the only thing I owe him like his livestock on their manure piles—is my physical growth. Besides this "nothing" that he so plentifully gives me, his constant frowning at me also takes from me those  things that nature gave to me. He makes me eat with his servants, refuses to call me his brother, and denies me the education that I deserve. Adam, this is what grieves me. And lately I have felt my father's independent spirit—which I think is a part of me—beginning to rebel against this servitude. I will no longer endure it, though I don't know how to improve my situation.

Enter OLIVER

ADAM

Yonder comes my master, your brother.

ADAM

Here comes my master, your brother.

ORLANDO

Go apart, Adam, and thou shalt hear how he will shake me up.

ORLANDO

Hide yourself somewhere close by, Adam. And see how he mistreats me.

OLIVER

Now, sir, what make you here?

OLIVER

What are you doing here, sir?

ORLANDO

Nothing. I am not taught to make anything.

ORLANDO

Nothing. I have not been taught to do anything.

OLIVER

What mar you then, sir?

OLIVER

What are you undoing then, sir?

ORLANDO

Marry, sir, I am helping you to mar that which God made, a poor unworthy brother of yours, with idleness.

ORLANDO

Well, sir, by being so idle I am helping you to undo something that God made: your poor, unworthy brother.

OLIVER

Marry, sir, be better employed, and be naught awhile.

OLIVER

Well, sir, do something more useful, and go away for a while.

ORLANDO

Shall I keep your hogs and eat husks with them? What prodigal portion have I spent that I should come to suchpenury?

ORLANDO

Should I keep your hogs and eat slop with them? What portion of my inheritance have I wasted that I should be so poor?

OLIVER

Know you where you are, sir?

OLIVER

Do you know where you are, sir?

ORLANDO

O sir, very well: here in your orchard.

ORLANDO

Oh, sir, I know very well: here in your orchard.

OLIVER

Know you before whom, sir?

OLIVER

Do you know who you're talking to, sir?

ORLANDO

Ay, better than him I am before knows me. I know you are my eldest brother, and in the gentle condition of blood you should so know me. The courtesy of nations allows you my better, in that you are the first-born, but the same tradition takes not away my blood, were there twenty brothers betwixt us. I have as much of my father in me as you, albeit, I confess, your coming before me is nearer to his reverence.

ORLANDO

Yes, better than the one I'm talking to knows me. I know you are my eldest brother, and you should know that I am a born gentleman just like you. According to the rules and customs of nations you are my superior, because you were born first. But those rules can't take from me the blood we share, even if there were twenty brothers born between us. I have as much of my father in me as you do—though, I confess, you are closer to him in age and importance.

OLIVER

What, boy! [strikes him]

OLIVER

What, boy! [He strikes him]

ORLANDO

Come, come, elder brother, you are too young in this. [seizes him]

ORLANDO

Come, come, elder brother! In fighting at least, you are too inexperienced. [He grabs him]

OLIVER

Wilt thou lay hands on me, villain?

OLIVER

Will you lay hands on me, you villain?

ORLANDO

I am no villain. I am the youngest son of Sir Rowland de Boys. He was my father, and he is thrice a villain that says such a father begot villains. Wert thou not mybrother, I would not take this hand from thy throat till this other had pulled out thy tongue for saying so.Thou hast railed on thyself.

ORLANDO

I am no villain. I am the youngest son of Sir Rowland de Boys. He was my father, and anyone who says that his sons are villains is three times a villain. If you weren't my brother, I wouldn't let go of your throat until I had pulled out your tongue for your insolence. You have only insulted yourself.

ADAM

Sweet masters, be patient. For your father’s remembrance, be at accord.

ADAM

Sweet masters, please calm down. Be peaceful, for the sake of your father's memory.

OLIVER

Let me go, I say.

OLIVER

Let me go, I say.

ORLANDO

I will not till I please. You shall hear me. My father charged you in his will to give me good education. You have trained me like a peasant, obscuring and hiding from me all gentlemanlike qualities. The spirit of my father grows strong in me, and I will no longer endure it. Therefore allow me such exercises as may become a gentleman, or give me the poor allottery my father left me by testament. With that I will go buy my fortunes.

ORLANDO

I won't let you go until I want to. You will listen to what I have to say. In his will, my father told you to give me a good education. Instead you have raised me like a peasant, keeping anything from me that might make me a gentleman. But now the spirit of my father grows strong in me, and I will no longer endure it. Therefore give me the freedom to act like a gentleman, or give me my rightful share of my father's inheritance—small though it is. With that money I can go seek my fortunes on my own.

OLIVER

And what wilt thou do—beg when that is spent? Well, sir, get you in. I will not long be troubled with you. You shall have some part of your will. I pray you leave me.

OLIVER

And what will you do—start begging once you've spent that money? Well, sir, go inside. I won't be troubled with you for long. You will get some of what you want. Now please leave me.

ORLANDO

I will no further offend you than becomes me for my good.

ORLANDO

I won't offend you any more than is necessary to ensure I get what I deserve.

OLIVER

Get you with him, you old dog.

OLIVER

[To ADAM] You go along with him, you old dog.

ADAM

Is “old dog” my reward? Most true, I have lost my teeth in your service. God be with my old master. He would not have spoke such a word.

ADAM

Is this my reward for years of service, to be called "old dog?" It's true that I have grown old and lost my teeth in your service. God bless my old master, your father. He would never have treated me like this.

Exeunt ORLANDO and ADAM

OLIVER

Is it even so? Begin you to grow upon me? I will physicyour rankness and yet give no thousand crowns neither.—Holla, Dennis!

OLIVER

Can this be? Are you starting to challenge me? I will cure you of your insolence and not give you a thousand crowns either. Hey, Dennis!

Enter DENNIS

DENNIS

Calls your Worship?

DENNIS

Did you call for me, your Worship?

OLIVER

Was not Charles, the duke’s wrestler, here to speak with me?

OLIVER

Hasn't the duke's wrestler Charles come here to speak with me?

DENNIS

So please you, he is here at the door and importunes access to you.

DENNIS

Yes, sir. He is here at the door and asks to see you.

OLIVER

Call him in.

OLIVER

Call him in.

Exit DENNIS

'Twill be a good way, and tomorrow the wrestling is.

This will be a good plan, and tomorrow is the wrestling match.

Enter CHARLES

CHARLES

Good morrow to your Worship.

CHARLES

Good morning to your Worship.

OLIVER

Good Monsieur Charles, what’s the new news at the new court?

OLIVER

Good Monsieur Charles, what's the latest news at the new palace court?

CHARLES

There’s no news at the court, sir, but the old news. That is, the old duke is banished by his younger brotherthe new duke, and three or four loving lords have put themselves into voluntary exile with him, whose lands and revenues enrich the new duke. Therefore he gives them good leave to wander.

CHARLES

There's no news but the old news, sir. The old duke is still banished by his younger brother, the new duke. Three or four loyal lords have gone into voluntary exile with the old duke. And since the new duke has seized their land and money, he is happy to let them wander.

OLIVER

Can you tell if Rosalind, the duke’s daughter, be banished with her father?

OLIVER

Do you know if Rosalind, the old duke's daughter, has been banished with her father?

CHARLES

Oh, no, for the duke’s daughter her cousin so loves her, being ever from their cradles bred together, that she would have followed her exile or have died to stay behind her. She is at the court, and no less beloved of her uncle than his own daughter, and never two ladies loved as they do.

CHARLES

Oh no, because her cousin, the new duke's daughter, loves Rosalind deeply, and they were raised together as children. The duke's daughter Celia would have followed Rosalind into exile or died of grief at her absence. Rosalind is still at the court, where her uncle loves her like she is his own daughter, and the cousins love each other like no other women before them. 

OLIVER

Where will the old duke live?

OLIVER

Where is the old duke living?

CHARLES

They say he is already in the Forest of Arden, and a many merry men with him; and there they live like the old Robin Hood of England. They say many young gentlemenflock to him every day and fleet the time carelessly, as they did in the golden world.

CHARLES

They say he is already in the Forest of Arden. He has many companions with him, and there they live like Robin Hood and his merry men. They say that many young gentlemen join him every day. They spend their time without a care in the world, the way people lived in the golden days.

OLIVER

What, you wrestle tomorrow before the new duke?

OLIVER

So, are you going to wrestle tomorrow before the new duke?

CHARLES

Marry, do I, sir, and I came to acquaint you with a matter. I am given, sir, secretly to understand that your younger brother Orlando hath a disposition to come in disguised against me to try a fall. Tomorrow, sir, I wrestle for my credit, and he that escapes me without some broken limb shall acquit him well. Your brother is but young and tender, and, for your love I would be loath to foil him, as I must for my own honor if he comein. Therefore, out of my love to you, I came hither to acquaint you withal, that either you might stay him fromhis intendment or brook such disgrace well as he shall run into, in that it is a thing of his own search and altogether against my will.

CHARLES

Yes, sir, and that's what I came to talk to you about. I have been secretly informed that your younger brother Orlando plans to disguise himself and try to wrestle me. Tomorrow, sir, I wrestle for my reputation, and anyone who escapes me without a broken limb will have done quite well. Your brother is young and inexperience. And because I love you, I would hate to crush him, which I must do for my honor's sake if we fought. Therefore, out of my love for you, I came here to tell you everything, so that you might either keep him from fighting me, or be prepared for his disgrace, which will be his own fault and entirely against my will.

OLIVER

Charles, I thank thee for thy love to me, which thou shalt find I will most kindly requite. I had myself notice of my brother’s purpose herein and have by underhand means labored to dissuade him from it; but he is resolute. I’ll tell thee, Charles: it is the stubbornest young fellow of France, full of ambition, anenvious emulator of every man’s good parts, a secret and villainous contriver against me his natural brother. Therefore use thy discretion. I had as lief thou didst break his neck as his finger. And thou wert best look to’t, for if thou dost him any slight disgrace or if he do not mightily grace himself on thee, he will practice against thee by poison, entrap thee by some treacherous device and never leave thee till he hath ta'en thy life by some indirect means or other. For I assure thee—and almost with tears I speak it—there is not one so young and so villainous this day living. I speak but brotherlyof him, but should I anatomize him to thee as he is, I must blush and weep, and thou must look pale and wonder.

OLIVER

Charles, I thank you for your loyalty to me, and you'll see that I will kindly reward you. I had myself learned of my brother's plan to disguise himself and fight you, and I have already been secretly trying to change his mind, but he won't budge. I tell you, Charles: he is the stubbornest young fellow in France, full of ambition, a jealous mimic of other people's good qualities, and a secret, villainous traitor against me, his own brother. So use your discretion. I would be just as pleased if you broke his neck as his finger. And you'd best watch your back, because if you embarrass him or he doesn't thoroughly beat you, then he'll try to poison you later, or else trap you in some treacherous way. He won't rest until he's had you killed by some indirect means. For I assure you—and I say this almost in tears—there is no one alive so young and so villainous. I can only speak in a kind way about him because he's my brother, but if I were to really describe him as he is, I'd have to blush and weep. And you would grow pale and not even believe me.

CHARLES

I am heartily glad I came hither to you. If he come tomorrow, I’ll give him his payment. If ever he go aloneagain, I’ll never wrestle for prize more. And so God keep your Worship.

CHARLES

I am very glad I came here to talk to you. If he tries to wrestle me tomorrow, I'll give him what he deserves. If he can walk on his own after I'm through with him, I'll never wrestle professionally again. Farewell, and God bless your Worship.

OLIVER

Farewell, good Charles.

OLIVER

Farewell, good Charles.

Exit CHARLES

Now will I stir this gamester. I hope I shall see an end of him, for my soul—yet I know not why—hates nothingmore than he. Yet he’s gentle, never schooled and yet learned, full of noble device, of all sorts enchantinglybeloved, and indeed so much in the heart of the world and especially of my own people, who best know him, thatI am altogether misprized. But it shall not be so long;this wrestler shall clear all. Nothing remains but thatI kindle the boy thither, which now I’ll go about.

Now I will cause trouble for my adventurous brother. I hope this will be the end of him, for my soul hates him more than anything in the world, though I don't know why. He is an upright man—uneducated but very smart—with a noble manner about him. And everyone loves him. Even my own people, who know him best, love him and dislike me. But not for long; this wrestler will fix everything. All that remains is to persuade my brother to wrestle, which I will now do.

Exit

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Matt cosby
About the Translator: Matt Cosby
Matt Cosby graduated from Amherst College in 2011, and currently works as a writer and editor for LitCharts. He is from Florida but now lives in Portland, Oregon, where he also makes art, plays the piano, and goes to dog parks.