As You Like It
As You Like It Transformation Quotes
How we cite our quotes: (Act.Scene.Line). Line numbers correspond to The Norton Shakespeare, second edition, published in 2008.
The worst fault you have is to be in love.
'Tis a fault I will not change for your best virtue.
I am weary of you.
By my troth, I was seeking for a fool when I found
He is drowned in the brook: look but in, and you
shall see him.
There I shall see mine own figure.
Which I take to be either a fool or a cipher. (3.2.9)
According to Jaques, love transforms us all into "fools."
[...] many a man has good horns, and
knows no end of them. Well, that is the dowry of
his wife; 'tis none of his own getting. Horns?
Even so. Poor men alone? No, no; the noblest deer
hath them as huge as the rascal. (3.3.9)
Touchstone suggests that, as soon as a man is married, he is transformed into a beast with "horns" on his "forehead" (a.k.a. a cuckold, or a man who has been cheated on by his wife). As unfair and sexist as it is, this idea is pretty common in Shakespearean drama. In fact, our favorite Danish Prince says something similar about his ex-girlfriend in Hamlet. Check it out:
Or, if thou wilt needs
marry, marry a fool; for wise men know well enough
what monsters you make of them. To a nunnery, go,
and quickly too. Farewell. (Hamlet, 3.1.11)
Like Touchstone, Hamlet suggests that women turn their husbands into "monster[s]," or cuckolds (cuckolds were thought to have horns like monsters) because wives inevitably cheat. For more on cuckoldry in As You Like It, check out "Symbolism."
Was't you he rescu'd?
Was't you that did so oft contrive to kill him?
'Twas I; but 'tis not I. I do not shame
To tell you what I was, since my conversion
So sweetly tastes, being the thing I am. (4.3.10)
Hmm. This is a mighty convenient time for Oliver to undergo a transformation. Gee. We wonder if it has something to do with the fact that Oliver's life was just saved by Orlando. Here, Oliver confesses that he's no longer the same guy he was before. (The one who tried to have his little bro killed...twice.) Nevertheless, Oliver does seem to have experienced a "conversion" after entering Arden.