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As You Like It

William Shakespeare

Book Overview: 

One of Shakespeare’s most popular plays, As You Like It is a pastoral comedy of mistaken identity, wit, and love. Daughter of a banished duke and forced to flee the court, Rosalind hides in the Forest of Arden disguised as a man. When her true love Orlando also shows up in the forest, she courts him without revealing her identity. Meanwhile, Phebe mistakenly falls in love with her disguise, Silvius pines for Phebe, Jacques philosophizes, and Touchstone makes fun of it all, and love and happiness triumph (for the most part) as Rosalind orchestrates a happy ending amid the confusion.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .Why so am I: we still have slept together,
Rose at an instant, learn'd, play'd, eat together;
And wheresoe'er we went, like Juno's swans,
Still we went coupled and inseparable.

DUKE FREDERICK
She is too subtle for thee; and her smoothness,
Her very silence, and her patience
Speak to the people, and they pity her.
Thou art a fool: she robs thee of thy name;
And thou wilt show more bright and seem more virtuous
When she is gone: then open not thy lips;
Firm and irrevocable is my doom
Which I have pass'd upon her;—she is banish'd.

CELIA
Pronounce that sentence, then, on me, my liege:
I cannot live out of her company.

DUKE FREDERICK
You are a fool.—You, niece, provide yourself:
If you outstay the time, upon mine honour,
And in the greatness of my word, you die.
[Exeunt DUKE FREDERICK and Lords.] CELIA
O my poor Rosalind! whither wilt thou go?
Wilt. . . Read More