Essay by PaperNerd ContributorHigh School, 10th grade September 2001

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Pyramus and Thisbe, one a very handsome young man, the other, liked most among the girls who lived in the Orient, occupied opposite houses, where it is said that fired-brick walls surrounded the tall city of Semiramis. Their closeness led to their acquaintance and the first steps of their love; love increased with time. They would have come together in the bond of marriage, but their fathers forbid it, what they could not prevent, they both burned equally in their captured minds. All witnesses are gone, and have spoken by a sign and a nod of assent, and the more if is concealed, the more the hidden fire bums with desire. "The common wall was split open by a slender crack, which had developed once, whenever it was made, between each of their houses. That flaw was known to no one for a long period of time-- Who does love not sense?-- First you see lovers, and create a pathway to speech; with a small amount of safety through that pathway they are accustomed to murmur and flattering words are accustomed to pass.

Often, when Thisbe had taken up position on this side, and Pyramus on that side, and each it turn had been seized at and inhaled by a breathing mouth, they said, 'Enemy wall, why do you stand in the way of love? How great a matter would it be for you to allow our whole bodies to join, but, if this is too much, at least open for us to kiss? And we will not be ungrateful: we acknowledge our debt to you, the fact that the pathway has given words to the ears of lovers.' Such diverse things with no effect having been spoken nearby their homes, before night they each said, 'Goodbye' and gave their own side of the wall a kiss of their own which did not come through on the opposite side.

"After Aurora had removed the nighttime fires, and the sun had dried the frosty roots of plants; they met at the accustomed place. Then, murmuring quietly and having complained about much beforehand, they decided to attempt to trick their parents and leave from their doors in the silence of the night, and when they had left from the house, and left behind the rooftops of the city, and so that they would not go astray as they wander about in the vast countryside, they meet at the tomb of Ninus, and they lie under the shade of trees (that tree that was rich in snow-white fruit was a tall mulberry tree, close to a cool spring). The plan pleases them- and the light, having seemed at first to leave slowly' is hurled down towards the water, and night leaves through the water in the same way.

"Cunningly through the darkness, turning the door on its hinges, Thisbe leaves, and tricks her own family, and with her face concealed arrives at the tomb, and sits under the tree which they had spoken of-- love was making her bold. Look! A lioness comes with her foaming jaws smeared with the newly shed blood of a cow, to satisfy her thirst in the nearby spring in the shade. In the distance the Babylonian Thisbe saw the lioness by the light of the moon's rays, and fled with fearful feet into a dark cave, and while she fled, she left behind a veil which had slipped from her back. When the savage lioness quenched her thirst in the great shade, and while she was returning through the forest, she shredded the thin mantle, which had been found by chance without Thisbe herself, with her mouth which had been stained with blood.