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Shakespeare Quotes: Too much of a good thing

Shakespeare Quotes: Too much of a good thing

Too much of a good thing Introduction

I'm Rosalind. I'm the daughter of a banished Duke. When my uncle tries to get rid of me, I decide to dress as a dude and go into the Forest of Arden to make my own way in life. And you know what I think?

Why then, can one desire too much of a good thing?
Come, sister, you shall be the priest and marry us.
Give me your hand, Orlando. What do you say, sister? (4.1.112-115)

Who Said It and Where

In As You Like It, Rosalind runs away after her uncle threatens her. She knows that rape and robbery are a very real possibility on the road, so she decides to disguise herself as a guy named Ganymede, just to be a wee bit safer. When our bossy, opinionated, and gutsy girl dons her disguise and ventures into Arden, she challenges all kinds of traditional 16th-century assumptions about women being passive, silent, and helpless.

Before we know it, Rosalind bumps into Orlando in the forest. She has a major crush on him. She thinks Orlando is the dreamiest boy she's ever laid eyes on and Orlando feels the same way about her—Rosalind. The two fall in love faster than you can make Ramen noodles. There's just one problem: she's still pretending to be Ganymede.

But why come clean about her true identity when she can use it to her advantage? She stays in her male disguise so she can pump Orlando for information about how he really feels about Rosalind. And it works. Orlando confesses that he's head over heels for her, thinking that he's dishing with a friendly dude.

This quote comes to us when Rosalind and Orlando are having one of their many spirited conversations. "Ganymede" generously offers to pretend to be Rosalind, so that Orlando can practice all of his best moves in the romance department. The two banter back and forth. Eventually, Rosalind/Ganymede suggests that, in the spirit of pretend-wooing, they should have a pretend wedding.

Rosalind quips that Orlando can have "too much of a good thing" in marrying her. She's just that cool. Her cousin, Celia can play priest and marry the couple. Oh come on. We all did this as kids.

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