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Faith, niece, you tax Signior Benedick too much

Faith, niece, you tax Signior Benedick too
much, but he’ll be meet with you, I doubt it not.
He hath done good service, lady, in these wars.
You had musty victual, and he hath holp to
eat it. He is a very valiant trencherman; he hath an
excellent stomach.

He wears his faith but as the fashion of his hat

And a good soldier too, lady.
And a good soldier to a lady, but what is he
to a lord?
A lord to a lord, a man to a man, stuffed
with all honorable virtues.
It is so indeed. He is no less than a stuffed
man, but for the stuffing—well, we are all mortal.
You must not, sir, mistake my niece. There is
a kind of merry war betwixt Signior Benedick and
her. They never meet but there’s a skirmish of wit
between them.
Alas, he gets nothing by that. In our last
conflict, four of his five wits went halting off, and
now is the whole man governed with one, so that if
he have wit enough to keep himself warm, let him
bear it for a difference between himself and his
horse, for it is all the wealth that he hath left to
be known a reasonable creature. Who is his companion
now? He hath every month a new sworn brother.
Is ’t possible?
Very easily possible. He wears his faith but
as the fashion of his hat; it ever changes with the
next block.
I see, lady, the gentleman is not in your books.
No. An he were, I would burn my study. But
I pray you, who is his companion? Is there no
young squarer now that will make a voyage with
him to the devil?
He is most in the company of the right
noble Claudio.
O Lord, he will hang upon him like a
disease! He is sooner caught than the pestilence,
and the taker runs presently mad. God help the
noble Claudio! If he have caught the Benedick, it
will cost him a thousand pound ere he be cured.
I will hold friends with you, lady.
Do, good friend.
You will never run mad, niece.
No, not till a hot January.

Act 1
Scene 1
Line 47

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