A line-by-line translation

As You Like It

As You Like It Translation Act 3, Scene 3

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Enter TOUCHSTONE and AUDREY, and JAQUES behind

TOUCHSTONE

Come apace, good Audrey. I will fetch up your goats, Audrey. And how, Audrey? Am I the man yet? Doth my simple feature content you?

TOUCHSTONE

Come along, good Audrey. I will fetch your goats for you, Audrey. And now, Audrey? Am I the man for you? Do the features of my simple appearance please you?

AUDREY

Your features, Lord warrant us! What features?

AUDREY

Your features, God protect us! What features?

TOUCHSTONE

I am here with thee and thy goats, as the most capricious poet, honest Ovid, was among the Goths.

TOUCHSTONE

Well, I am here with you and your goats, just as the witty poet, honest Ovid, was exiled among the Goths.

JAQUES

[aside] O knowledge ill-inhabited, worse than Jove in athatched house.

JAQUES

[To himself] Oh, knowledge existing in someone as unworthy as this fool is worse than the king of the gods living in a thatched hut.

TOUCHSTONE

When a man’s verses cannot be understood nor a man’s good wit seconded with the forward child, understanding, it strikes a man more dead than a great reckoning in a little room. Truly, I would the gods had made thee poetical.

TOUCHSTONE

When a man's verses can't be understood and his good jokes aren't acknowledged or appreciated, it's worse than getting a large bill for renting a little room. Truly, I wish the gods had made you more poetical, Audrey.

AUDREY

I do not know what “poetical” is. Is it honest in deed and word? Is it a true thing?

AUDREY

I don't know what "poetical" means. Does it mean honest in word and deed? Does it mean being truthful?

TOUCHSTONE

No, truly, for the truest poetry is the most feigning,and lovers are given to poetry, and what they swear in poetry may be said as lovers they do feign.

TOUCHSTONE

No, truly, for the truest poetry is the most imaginative and deceptive. Lovers are inclined towards poetry, and what they promise to be true in their poems is often a lie in real life.

AUDREY

Do you wish then that the gods had made me poetical?

AUDREY

Do you still wish that the gods had made me poetical, then?

TOUCHSTONE

I do, truly, for thou swear’st to me thou art honest. Now, if thou wert a poet, I might have some hope thou didst feign.

TOUCHSTONE

I do, truly. For you swore to me that you were a virgin, and if you were a poet, I might have some hope that you were lying.

AUDREY

Would you not have me honest?

AUDREY

What, you don't want me to be chaste?

TOUCHSTONE

No, truly, unless thou wert hard-favored, for honesty coupled to beauty is to have honey a sauce to sugar.

TOUCHSTONE

No, truly, not unless you were ugly. For chastity alongside beauty in one woman is like sweetening sugar with honey.

JAQUES

[aside] A material fool.

JAQUES

[To himself] A fool with good sense.

AUDREY

Well, I am not fair, and therefore I pray the gods makeme honest.

AUDREY

Well, I am not beautiful, so I pray that the gods will at least keep me chaste.

TOUCHSTONE

Truly, and to cast away honesty upon a foul slut were to put good meat into an unclean dish.

TOUCHSTONE

Yes, but to waste chastity on an ugly slut is like putting good meat into a dirty dish.

AUDREY

I am not a slut, though I thank the gods I am foul.

AUDREY

I am not a slut, though I thank the gods that I am ugly.

TOUCHSTONE

Well, praised be the gods for thy foulness; sluttishness may come hereafter. But be it as it may be,I will marry thee; and to that end I have been with SirOliver Martext, the vicar of the next village, who hathpromised to meet me in this place of the forest and to couple us.

TOUCHSTONE

Well, may the gods be praised for your ugliness then. Maybe sluttishness will come later. But be that as it may, I will marry you. To that end, I have spoken to Sir Oliver Martext, the priest from the nearby village, and he has promised to meet us in this part of the forest and marry us.

JAQUES

[aside] I would fain see this meeting.

JAQUES

[To himself] I'd love to see this.

AUDREY

Well, the gods give us joy.

AUDREY

Well, may the gods bless our marriage.

TOUCHSTONE

Amen. A man may, if he were of a fearful heart, staggerin this attempt, for here we have no temple but the wood, no assembly but horn-beasts. But what though? Courage. As horns are odious, they are necessary. It is said, “Many a man knows no end of his goods.” Right: many a man has good horns and knows no end of them. Well, that is the dowry of his wife; ’tis none of his own getting. Horns? Even so. Poor men alone? No, no.The noblest deer hath them as huge as the rascal. Is the single man therefore blessed? No. As a walled town is more worthier than a village, so is the forehead of amarried man more honorable than the bare brow of a bachelor. And by how much defense is better than no skill, by so much is a horn more precious than to want.

TOUCHSTONE

Amen. Another man, if he had a fearful heart, might falter at this point—for this forest isn't a real temple, and there is no audience here but horned beasts. But who cares? Horns are hateful, but they are necessary. It is said, "Many men are so wealthy that they don't even know how much they own." I agree: many men have good horns, and don't even know how big they are. Well, that is what the wife brings to the marriage; the man has nothing to do with getting his horns or his children. Horns? There they are. Are they only for poor men? No, no. The noblest deer's horns are as huge as those of the inferior deer. Is the single man the luckiest, then? No. As a town protected by a wall is worth more than a small village, so is a married man's horned forehead more honorable than a bachelor's bare forehead. Just as it's better to be skilled at defending oneself than to be defenseless, so is a horn more precious than no horn at all.

Enter SIR OLIVER MARTEXT

Here comes Sir Oliver.—Sir Oliver Martext, you are wellmet. Will you dispatch us here under this tree, or shall we go with you to your chapel?

Here comes Sir Oliver. 

[To SIR OLIVER MARTEXT] Sir Oliver Martext, I'm glad to see you. Will you finish our business here under this tree, or should we go with you to your chapel?

SIR OLIVER MARTEXT

Is there none here to give the woman?

SIR OLIVER MARTEXT

Is there no one here to give the bride away?

TOUCHSTONE

I will not take her on gift of any man.

TOUCHSTONE

I won't take her as a secondhand gift from another man.

SIR OLIVER MARTEXT

Truly, she must be given, or the marriage is not lawful.

SIR OLIVER MARTEXT

Truly, someone has to give her away, or the marriage isn't legal.

JAQUES

[advancing] Proceed, proceed. I’ll give her.

JAQUES

[Coming forward] Continue, continue. I'll give her away.

TOUCHSTONE

Good even, good Monsieur What-ye-call’t. How do you, sir? You are very well met. God 'ild you for your last company. I am very glad to see you. Even a toy in hand here, sir. Nay, pray be covered.

TOUCHSTONE

Good evening, good Mister What's-his-name. How do you do, sir? I am very glad to see you. May God reward you for being here right now. I am very glad to see you. This is just an unimportant matter here, sir. No, please keep your hat on.

JAQUES

Will you be married, motley?

JAQUES

Do you want to get married, fool?

TOUCHSTONE

As the ox hath his bow, sir, the horse his curb, and the falcon her bells, so man hath his desires; and as pigeons bill, so wedlock would be nibbling.

TOUCHSTONE

As the ox has his yoke, the horse his bridle, and the falcon her tether, so a man has his desires, which must be restrained somehow

JAQUES

And will you, being a man of your breeding, be married under a bush like a beggar? Get you to church, and have a good priest that can tell you what marriage is. This fellow will but join you together as they join wainscot.Then one of you will prove a shrunk panel and, like green timber, warp, warp.

JAQUES

But will you—as a man of your breeding—get married like a beggar under a bush, by an uneducated priest? Get yourself to a church and have a proper priest teach you the obligations of marriage. This fellow here will just set you two alongside each other like two pieces of paneling. Then one of you will warp like green wood, and you will both be out of alignment.

TOUCHSTONE

[aside] I am not in the mind but I were better to be married of him than of another, for he is not like to marry me well, and not being well married, it will be a good excuse for me hereafter to leave my wife.

TOUCHSTONE

[To himself] I think I'd rather have this fellow marry us than any other, for he isn't likely to marry us properly. And if we're not married properly, then I'll have a good excuse to leave my wife later on.

JAQUES

Go thou with me, and let me counsel thee.

JAQUES

Come with me, and let me advise you.

TOUCHSTONE

Come, sweet Audrey. We must be married, or we must live in bawdry.— Farewell, good Master Oliver, not O sweet Oliver, O brave Oliver, Leave me not behind thee But Wind away, Begone, I say, I will not to wedding with thee.

TOUCHSTONE

Come, sweet Audrey. We must be married, or else live in sin.

[To SIR OLIVER MARTEXT] Farewell, good Master Oliver. We're not singing that song:
Oh sweet Oliver,
Oh brave Oliver,
Don't leave me behind,
But
Wind, go away,
Go away, I say,
For it's not you I'm marrying.

Exeunt JAQUES, TOUCHSTONE, and AUDREY

SIR OLIVER MARTEXT

'Tis no matter. Ne'er a fantastical knave of them all shall flout me out of my calling.

SIR OLIVER MARTEXT

It doesn't matter to me. None of these crazy fools will ever convince me to abandon my position.

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.