“Three instances of “it” made “more agreeable” in “As You Like It” breathed abroad are:

Now three examples of Shakespeare making Marlowe’s account of the reckoning of Hero the fair more agreeable are as follows:



Sweet Phebe, do not scorn me; do not, Phebe;

Say that you love me not, but say not so

In bitterness. The common executioner,

Whose heart the accustom’d sight of death makes hard,

Falls not the axe upon the humbled neck

But first begs pardon: will you sterner be

Than he that dies and lives by bloody drops?

Enter ROSALIND, CELIA, and CORIN, behind


I would not be thy executioner:

I fly thee, for I would not injure thee.

Thou tell’st me there is murder in mine eye:

‘Tis pretty, sure, and very probable,

That eyes, that are the frail’st and softest things,

Who shut their coward gates on atomies,

Should be call’d tyrants, butchers, murderers!

Now I do frown on thee with all my heart;

And if mine eyes can wound, now let them kill thee:

Now counterfeit to swoon; why now fall down;

Or if thou canst not, O, for shame, for shame,

Lie not, to say mine eyes are murderers!

Now show the wound mine eye hath made in thee:

Scratch thee but with a pin, and there remains

Some scar of it; lean but upon a rush,

The cicatrice and capable impressure

Thy palm some moment keeps; but now mine eyes,

Which I have darted at thee, hurt thee not,

Nor, I am sure, there is no force in eyes

That can do hurt.http://shakespeare.mit.edu/asyoulikeit/asyoulikeit.3.5.html 5:11 AM 10/19/2020



I would not have my right Rosalind of this mind,

for, I protest, her frown might kill me.


By this hand, it will not kill a fly. But come, now

I will be your Rosalind in a more coming-on

disposition, and ask me what you will. I will grant

it. http://shakespeare.mit.edu/asyoulikeit/asyoulikeit.4.1.html


“Leander, he would have lived many a fair

year, though Hero had turned nun, if it had not been

for a hot midsummer night; for, good youth, he went

but forth to wash him in the Hellespont and being

taken with the cramp was drowned and the foolish

coroners of that age found it was ‘Hero of Sestos.’

But these are all lies: men have died from time to

time and worms have eaten them, but not for love. http://shakespeare.mit.edu/asyoulikeit/asyoulikeit.4.1.html 5:05 AM 10/19/2020

Note Phebe gives the lie direct to the lie that says Leander has murderer’s eyes that is they have a force in them that kills Hero when he scorns her in a reaction to Hero making “this false morne”. But Ganymede’s presence changes her thinking. And in a letter she compares Shakespeare’s Ganymede’s scorn of her to Leander’s scorn of Hero and therefore she too will have to study how to die. However Phebe errs when she compares Ganymede’s scorn of her to Marlowe’s Leander’s scorn of Hero for Shakespeare’s Ganymede does not have murderer’s eyes.

Note Shakespeare’s Ganymede is a maid in a man’s attire who is Rosaline incognito Ganymede who looks like Shakespeare’s master mistress in sonnet 20. Marlowe’s Leander is a maid in a man’s attire who looks like Ganymede come down from heaven to borrow from Marlowe’s Neptune when he sees Leander swimming in the Hellespont.

Additionally one hears Shakespeare in Sonnet 117, speaking unto Henry Wriothesley and making reference to Marlowe’s Leander’s frown when Hero makes this false morne and in his waken’d hate he shoots Hero with a force that kills her: “Bring me within the level of your frown, But shoot not at me in your waken’d hate, Since my appeal says I did strive to prove the constancy and virtue of your love.” Unlike Marlowe who did strive to prove the power of a force in your eyes qua Leander that kills Hero.

Shakespeare’s Sonnet 83, “There lives more life in one of your fair eyes, Than both your poets can in praise devise.”

Shakespeare’s Touchstone in “As You Like It”, “When a man’s verses cannot be understood, nor a man’s good wit seconded with the forwarded child, understanding, it strikes a man more dead than a great reckoning in a little room.”

About Rich Willis

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