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Romeo and Juliet

Romeo and Juliet Translation Act 4, Scene 5

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The NURSE enters.

NURSE

Mistress! What, mistress! Juliet!—Fast, I warrant her, she.— Why, lamb! Why, lady! Fie, you slug-a-bed. Why, love, I say. Madam! Sweet-heart! Why, bride! What, not a word? You take your pennyworths now. Sleep for a week, for the next night, I warrant, The County Paris hath set up his rest That you shall rest but little.—God forgive me, Marry, and amen. How sound is she asleep! I must needs wake her.—Madam, madam, madam! Ay, let the county take you in your bed. He’ll fright you up, i’ faith. Will it not be? [Opens the bed curtains] What, dressed and in your clothes, and down again? I must needs wake you. Lady, lady, lady!— Alas, alas! Help, help! My lady’s dead!— Oh, welladay, that ever I was born!— Some aqua vitae, ho!—My lord! My lady!

NURSE

Mistress! Hey, mistress! Juliet! Fast asleep, I bet. Hey, lamb! Hey, lady! Hey, you sleepyhead! Hey, love, I say! Madam! Sweetheart! Hey, bride! What, not a single word to say? Enjoy this last bit of sleep now. Get a week’s worth of sleep, because tonight, I bet, Count Paris will make sure that you don’t get much rest. God forgive me. Indeed, and amen. How sound asleep she is! I have to wake her. Madam, madam, madam! Yes, let the count take you in your bed. He’ll wake you up, no doubt. Won’t he? [Opens the bed curtains] What? Still dressed in your clothes but asleep. I must wake you. Lady, lady, lady! No, no! Help, help! My lady’s dead! Oh curse the day I was born! Hey! Get me some brandy! My lord! My lady!

LADY CAPULET enters.

LADY CAPULET

What noise is here?

LADY CAPULET

What’s with all the noise?

NURSE

O lamentable day!

NURSE

Oh, terrible day!

LADY CAPULET

What is the matter?

LADY CAPULET

What’s the matter?

NURSE

Look, look. O heavy day!

NURSE

Look, look! Oh, what an awful day!

LADY CAPULET

O me, O me! My child, my only life,Revive, look up, or I will die with thee!—Help, help! Call help.

LADY CAPULET

Oh no, oh no! My child, my reason for being, come back! Look up, or I’ll die with you! Help, help! Call for help.

CAPULET enters.

CAPULET

For shame, bring Juliet forth. Her lord is come.

CAPULET

For shame, get Juliet out here. Her bridegroom has arrived.

NURSE

She’s dead, deceased, she’s dead. Alack the day!

NURSE

She’s dead, deceased, dead. Curse the day!

LADY CAPULET

Alack the day. She’s dead, she’s dead, she’s dead!

LADY CAPULET

Curse the day. She’s dead, she’s dead, she’s dead!

CAPULET

Ha? Let me see her. Out, alas! She’s cold. Her blood is settled, and her joints are stiff. Life and these lips have long been separated. Death lies on her like an untimely frost Upon the sweetest flower of all the field.

CAPULET

What? Let me see her. No! She’s cold. Her blood has stopped, and her joints are stiff. Life left her body a long while ago. Death rests on her like an unexpected frost that killed the most beautiful flower.

NURSE

O lamentable day!

NURSE

Oh terrible day!

LADY CAPULET

O woeful time.

LADY CAPULET

Oh awful time!

CAPULET

Death, that hath ta’en her hence to make me wail,Ties up my tongue and will not let me speak.

CAPULET

Death, which has taken her away to make me cry, ties up my tongue and will not let me speak.

FRIAR LAWRENCE

Come, is the bride ready to go to church?

FRIAR LAWRENCE

Come, is the bride ready to go to church?

FRIAR LAWRENCE and PARIS enter with MUSICIANS.

CAPULET

Ready to go, but never to return. O son! The night before thy wedding day Hath death lain with thy wife. There she lies, Flower as she was, deflowered by him. Death is my son-in-law. Death is my heir. My daughter he hath wedded. I will die, And leave him all. Life, living, all is Death’s.

CAPULET

She’s ready to go, but not to return. 

[To PARIS] Oh son! On the night before your wedding day, death has slept with your wife. There she lies, a flower who was deflowered by death. Death is my son-in-law. Death is my heir. Death has married my daughter. I will die and leave everything to Death. Life, living—it all is Death’s now.

PARIS

Have I thought long to see this morning’s face,And doth it give me such a sight as this?

PARIS

Have I waited to see this morning for so long, only for it to look like this?

LADY CAPULET

Accursed, unhappy, wretched, hateful day! Most miserable hour that e’er time saw In lasting labor of his pilgrimage. But one, poor one, one poor and loving child, But one thing to rejoice and solace in, And cruel death hath catched it from my sight!

LADY CAPULET

Cursed, unhappy, wretched, hateful day! The most miserable hour that ever existed in all of time. I had just one child living—one poor child, one poor and loving child. Just one thing to rejoice and find comfort in. Now cruel Death has stolen her from my sight!

NURSE

O woe! O woeful, woeful, woeful day! Most lamentable day, most woeful day That ever, ever, I did yet behold! O day, O day, O day, O hateful day! Never was seen so black a day as this. O woeful day, O woeful day!

NURSE

Oh misery! Oh miserable, miserable, miserable day! The saddest day, most miserable day that I ever, ever saw! Oh day! Oh day! Oh day! Oh hateful day! There has never been a day as black as this one. Oh miserable day, Oh miserable day!

PARIS

Beguiled, divorcèd, wrongèd, spited, slain! Most detestable Death, by thee beguiled, By cruel, cruel thee quite overthrown! O love! O life! Not life, but love in death.

PARIS

She was tricked, divorced, wronged, spited, killed! Detestable Death tricked her. Cruel, cruel Death murdered her. Oh love! Oh life! There is no life because my love is dead.

CAPULET

Despised, distressèd, hated, martyred, killed! Uncomfortable time, why camest thou now To murder, murder our solemnity? O child, O child! My soul, and not my child! Dead art thou! Alack, my child is dead, And with my child my joys are buried.

CAPULET

Despised, distressed, hated, martyred, killed! Why did you come now, Death, to murder, murder our joy? Oh child! Oh child! My soul and not my child! You are dead! No! My child is dead. My child will be buried together with my joy.

FRIAR LAWRENCE

Peace, ho, for shame! Confusion’s cure lives not In these confusions. Heaven and yourself Had part in this fair maid. Now heaven hath all, And all the better is it for the maid. Your part in her you could not keep from death, But heaven keeps his part in eternal life. The most you sought was her promotion, For ’twas your heaven she should be advanced. And weep ye now, seeing she is advanced Above the clouds, as high as heaven itself? Oh, in this love, you love your child so ill That you run mad, seeing that she is well. She’s not well married that lives married long, But she’s best married that dies married young. Dry up your tears and stick your rosemary On this fair corse, and, as the custom is, And in her best array, bear her to church. For though some nature bids us all lament, Yet nature’s tears are reason’s merriment.

FRIAR LAWRENCE

Quiet, for shame! Your outcries are no cure for confusion. Both you and heaven played a part in giving you your child. Now heaven has her, and she is better off. The part of her that came from you could not stop her from dying, but the part she got from heaven gives her eternal life. The most you could hope for her was that she marry well. Your idea of heaven for her was that she move up the social ladder. Yet now you weep, even though she has risen up above the clouds, all the way to heaven itself? Oh, by mourning her death you love your child so poorly, going crazy even though she is well and in heaven. It is better for a girl to die young while her marriage is still fresh and loving than to be married for a long time. Dry your tears, and place your rosemary on this beautiful corpse. And, as is the custom, put her in her finest clothes and carry her to church. It’s human nature to shed tears, but reason says that we should be joyful.

CAPULET

All things that we ordained festival Turn from their office to black funeral. Our instruments to melancholy bells, Our wedding cheer to a sad burial feast. Our solemn hymns to sullen dirges change, Our bridal flowers serve for a buried corse, And all things change them to the contrary.

CAPULET

The things that we prepared for the wedding now will be used instead for the funeral. Our musical instruments will be exchanged for mourning bells. Our wedding banquet will be a sad burial feast instead. Our celebratory hymns will change to sad funeral dirges. Our bridal flowers will cover a buried corpse. Everything will be used for the opposite purpose than we expected.

FRIAR LAWRENCE

Sir, go you in, and, madam, go with him; And go, Sir Paris. Every one prepare To follow this fair corse unto her grave. The heavens do lour upon you for some ill. Move them no more by crossing their high will.

FRIAR LAWRENCE

Sir, you go in. Madam, go with him. And you too, Sir Paris. Everyone prepare to follow this beautiful corpse to her grave. The heavens hang over you for some unknown reason. Stop fighting heaven’s will, and it will no longer move against you.

CAPULET, LADY CAPULET, PARIS, and FRIAR LAWRENCE exit.

FIRST MUSICIAN

Faith, we may put up our pipes and be gone.

FIRST MUSICIAN

I guess we can put our pipes away and leave.

NURSE

Honest good fellows, ah, put up, put up,For, well you know, this is a pitiful case.

NURSE

Honest good men, yes. Put them away, away. As you know, this is a sad case.

The NURSE exits.

FIRST MUSICIAN

Ay, by my troth, the case may be amended.

FIRST MUSICIAN

Yes, but this case at least can be mended. 

PETER enters.

PETER

Musicians, O musicians, “Heart’s Ease,” “Heart’s Ease.”O, an you will have me live, play “Heart’s Ease.”

PETER

Musicians, oh, musicians! Play “Heart’s Ease,” “Heart’s Ease.” Oh, if you want me to live, play “Heart’s Ease.”

FIRST MUSICIAN

Why “Heart’s ease?”

FIRST MUSICIAN

Why “Heart’s Ease?”

PETER

O musicians, because my heart itself plays “My Heart isFull.” O, play me some merry dump to comfort me.

PETER

Oh, musicians, because my heart itself is playing “My Heart is Full of Woe.” Oh, play me some happy mournful tune to comfort me.

FIRST MUSICIAN

Not a dump, we. ‘Tis no time to play now.

FIRST MUSICIAN

No, we won’t play a sad song. Now is not the time for it.

PETER

You will not then?

PETER

You won’t, then?

FIRST MUSICIAN

No.

FIRST MUSICIAN

No.

PETER

I will then give it you soundly.

PETER

Then I’ll give you something you won’t forget.

FIRST MUSICIAN

What will you give us?

FIRST MUSICIAN

What will you give us?

PETER

No money, on my faith, but the gleek. I will give you the minstrel.

PETER

Not money, I swear. But I’ll insult you, and call you rogues.

FIRST MUSICIAN

Then I will give you the serving creature.

FIRST MUSICIAN

Then I’ll call you a lowly servant.

PETER

Then will I lay the serving creature’s dagger on your pate. I will carry no crotchets. I’ll re you, I’ll fa you. Do you note me?

PETER

Then I’ll take my serving knife to smack you upside the head. I won’t need to sing. I’ll make you sing. Do you hear me?

FIRST MUSICIAN

An you re us and fa us, you note us.

FIRST MUSICIAN

If you make us sing, you’ll hear us.

SECOND MUSICIAN

Pray you, put up your dagger and put out your wit.

SECOND MUSICIAN

Please, put away your knife and show some wits.

PETER

Then have at you with my wit. I will dry-beat you withan iron wit and put up my iron dagger. Answer me like men. [Sings] When griping grief the heart doth wound And doleful dumps the mind oppress, Then music with her silver sound— [Speaks] Why “silver sound”? Why “music with her silversound”? What say you, Simon Catling?

PETER

I’ll attack you with my wit! I’ll put away my iron dagger and thrash you with my wicked wit. Answer me like men.
[Singing]
When grief wounds your heart,
And sadness presses on your mind,
Then music with her silver sound—

[Speaking] Why “silver sound”? What does  “music with her silver sound” mean? What do you say, Simon Catling?

FIRST MUSICIAN

Marry, sir, because silver hath a sweet sound.

FIRST MUSICIAN

Well, sir, because silver has a sweet sound.

PETER

Pretty.—What say you, Hugh Rebeck?

PETER

A witty reply! What do you say, Hugh Rebeck?

SECOND MUSICIAN

I say, “silver sound” because musicians sound for silver.

SECOND MUSICIAN

I say “silver sound,” because musicians play music to earn silver.

PETER

Pretty too.—What say you, James Soundpost?

PETER

More wit! What do you say, James Soundpost?

THIRD MUSICIAN

Faith, I know not what to say.

THIRD MUSICIAN

Well, I don’t know what to say.

PETER

Oh, I cry you mercy, you are the singer. I will say for you. It is “music with her silver sound” because musicians have no gold for sounding. [Sings] Then music with her silver sound With speedy help doth lend redress.

PETER

Oh, I beg your pardon. You’re the singer. I’ll answer for you. It is “music with her silver sound,” because musicians will never get rich.
[Singing]
Then music with her silver sound
Quickly makes you feel all right.

PETER exits.

FIRST MUSICIAN

What a pestilent knave is this same!

FIRST MUSICIAN

What an annoying fool this man is!

SECOND MUSICIAN

Hang him, jack! Come, we'll in here, tarry for the mourners, and stay dinner.

SECOND MUSICIAN

Oh, let him hang, man! Come with me, we'll go in here, wait for the mourners, and stay for dinner.

They exit.

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Ben florman
About the Translator: Ben Florman

Ben is a co-founder of LitCharts. He holds a BA in English Literature from Harvard University, where as an undergraduate he won the Winthrop Sargent prize for best undergraduate paper on a topic related to Shakespeare.