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THE SEVEN AGES.

All the world's a stage,

And all the men and women merely players:
They have their exits and their entrances;
And one man in his time plays many parts,
His acts being SEVEN AGES.

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And then, the whining School-Boy, with his satchel, And shining morning face, creeping like snail Unwillingly to school;

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And then, the Lover;

Sighing like furnace, with a woeful ballad
Made to his mistress' eye-brow.

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Then, a Soldier;

Full of strange oaths, and bearded like the pard, Jealous in honour, sudden* and quick in quarrel, Seeking the bubble reputation

Even in the cannon's mouth:

* Violent.

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And then, the Justice;

In fair round belly, with good capon lin'd,
With eyes severe, and beard of formal cut,
Full of wise saws and modern* instances,
And so he plays his part:

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The sixth age shifts

Into the lean and slipper'd Pantaloon;
With spectacles on nose, and pouch on side;
His youthful hose well sav'd, a world too wide
For his shrunk shank; and his big manly voice,
Turning again toward childish treble, pipes
And whistles in his sound:

*Trite, common.

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That ends this strange eventful history,
Is Second Childishness, and mere oblivion;
Sans teeth, sans eyes, sans taste, sans every thing.

ACT III.

A SHEPHERD'S PHILOSOPHY.

I KNOW, the more one sickens, the worse at ease he is; and that he that wants money, means, and content, is without three good friends:-That the property of rain is to wet, and fire to burn: That good pasture makes fat sheep: and that a great cause of the night is lack of the sun: That he, that hath learned no wit by nature nor art, may complain of good breeding, or comes of a very dull kindred.

CHARACTER OF AN HONEST AND SIMPLE SHEPHERD.

Sir, I am a true labourer; I earn that I eat, get that I wear; owe no man hate, envy no man's happiness; glad of other men's good, content with my harm: and the greatest of my pride is, to see my ewes graze, and my lambs suck.

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Cor. And how like you this shepherd's life, master Touchstone?

Touch. Truly, shepherd, in respect of itself, it is a good life; but in respect that it is a shepherd's life, it is nought. In respect that it is solitary, I like it very well; but in respect that it is private, it is a very vile life. Now in respect it is in the fields, it pleaseth me well; but in respect it is not in the court, it is tedious. As it is a spare life, look you, it fits my humour well; but as there is no more plenty in it, it goes much against my stomach.

DESCRIPTION OF A LOVER.

A lean cheek; which you have not: a blue eye, and sunken; which you have not: an unquestionable spirit*; which you have not: a beard neglected; which you have not:-but I pardon you for that; for, simply, your having † in beard is a younger brother's revenue:-Then your hose should be ungartered, your bonnet unbanded, your sleeve unbuttoned, your shoe untied, and every thing about you demonstrating a careless desolation. But you are no such

*A spirit averse to conversation.

+ Estate.

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