As You Like It: Act 5, Scene 3

           Enter TOUCHSTONE and AUDREY.

  1   Tomorrow is the joyful day, Audrey; tomorrow
  2   will we be married.

  3   I do desire it with all my heart; and I hope it is
4-5. dishonest: immodest.  woman of the world: married woman.
  4   no dishonest desire to desire to be a woman of
  5   the world. Here comes two of the banished
  6   duke's pages.

           Enter two Pages.

      First Page
  7   Well met, honest gentleman.

  8   By my troth, well met. Come, sit, sit, and a
  9   song.

      Second Page
10. We are for you: i.e., that suits us.
 10   We are for you: sit i' the middle.

      First Page
11. clap into't roundly: i.e., get right into it.  hawking: clearing the throat, hocking. —As in "hock a loogie."
13. only prologues to: i.e., most popular excuses for.
 11   Shall we clap into't roundly, without hawking
 12   or spitting or saying we are hoarse, which are
 13   the only prologues to a bad voice?

      Second Page
14-15. in a tune: in unison.  like two gipsies on a horse: I'm guessing that "two gipsies on a horse" would be "in a tune" (telling the same story) as they explained why the horse was not really stolen. This is a wild guess! Got a better idea? Shoot it to me.
 14   I'faith, i'faith; and both in a tune, like two
 15   gipsies on a horse.


16         It was a lover and his lass,
 17             With a hey, and a ho, and a hey nonino,
18. corn-field: field of grain. —In Shakespeare's time, "corn" always refers to wheat, barley, and rye, never to the kind of corn that people in the United States of America eat "on the cob."  19. ring time: i.e., season for weddings.
 18         That o'er the green corn-field did pass
 19             In the spring time, the only pretty ring time,
 20         When birds do sing, hey ding a ding, ding:
 21         Sweet lovers love the spring.

22. Between the acres: i.e., on the unploughed strips separating the planted fields.
 22         Between the acres of the rye,
 23             With a hey, and a ho, and a hey nonino,
 24         These pretty country folks would lie,
25. In spring time, etc.: —This indicates that at this point the entire second refrain is to be sung.
 25             In spring time, etc.

 26         This carol they began that hour,
 27             With a hey, and a ho, and a hey nonino,
28. life was but a flower: —This is an expression of the carpe diem idea that the best of life is like a flower that briefly blooms and then quickly withers.
 28         How that a life was but a flower,
 29             In spring time, etc.

30. take the present time: i.e., seize the moment.
 30         And therefore take the present time,
 31             With a hey, and a ho, and a hey nonino;
32. crowned with the prime: best celebrated in springtime.
 32         For love is crowned with the prime,
 33             In spring time, etc.

 34   Truly, young gentlemen, though there was no
35. ditty: words. note: music.
36. untuneable: untuneful. —Touchstone has just handed out a compliment along the lines of, "Though the ham was horrible, the potatoes were putrid."
37-38. we kept time, we lost not our time: i.e., we kept the rhythm, we didn't miss a beat.
 35   great matter in the ditty, yet the note was very
 36   untuneable.

      First Page
 37   You are deceived, sir: we kept time, we lost not
 38   our time.

39. yes: i.e., yes, you did lose (waste) your time.
 39   By my troth, yes; I count it but time lost to hear
 40   such a foolish song. God be wi' you; and God
 41   mend your voices! Come, Audrey.