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Author: William Shakespeare
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The Merry Wives of Windsor (Folio 1, 1623)


THE
Merry Wiues of Windsor.
1
Actus primus, Scena prima.
Enter Iustice Shallow, Slender, Sir Hugh Euans, Master
Page, Falstoffe, Bardolph, Nym, Pistoll, Anne Page,
Mistresse Ford, Mistresse Page, Simple.
5Shallow.
SIr Hugh, perswade me not: I will make a Star-
Chamber matter of it, if hee were twenty Sir
Iohn Falstoffs, he shall not abuse Robert Shallow
Esquire.
10Slen. In the County of Glocester, Iustice of Peace and
Shal. I (Cosen Slender) and Cust-alorum.
Slen. I, and Ratolorum too; and a Gentleman borne
(Master Parson) who writes himselfe Armigero, in any
Bill, Warrant, Quittance, or Obligation, Armigero.
15Shal. I that I doe, and haue done any time these three
hundred yeeres.
Slen. All his successors (gone before him) hath don't:
and all his Ancestors (that come after him) may: they
may giue the dozen white Luces in their Coate.
20Shal. It is an olde Coate.
Euans. The dozen white Lowses doe become an old
Coat well: it agrees well passant: It is a familiar beast to
man, and signifies Loue.
Shal. The Luse is the fresh-fish, the salt-fish, is an old
25Coate.
Slen. I may quarter (Coz).
Shal. You may, by marrying.
Euans. It is marring indeed, if he quarter it.
Shal. Not a whit.
30Euan. Yes per-lady: if he ha's a quarter of your coat,
there is but three Skirts for your selfe, in my simple con-
iectures; but that is all one: if Sir Iohn Falstaffe haue
committed disparagements vnto you, I am of the Church
and will be glad to do my beneuolence, to make attone-
35ments and compremises betweene you.
Shal. The Councell shall heare it, it is a Riot.
Euan. It is not meet the Councell heare a Riot: there
is no feare of Got in a Riot: The Councell (looke you)
shall desire to heare the feare of Got, and not to heare a
40Riot: take your viza-ments in that.
Shal. Ha; o'my life, if I were yong againe, the sword
should end it.
Euans. It is petter that friends is the sword, and end
it: and there is also another deuice in my praine, which
45peraduenture prings goot discretions with it. There is
Anne Page, which is daughter to Master Thomas Page,
which is pretty virginity.
Slen. Mistris Anne Page? she has browne haire, and
speakes small like a woman.
50Euans. It is that ferry person for all the orld, as iust as
you will desire, and seuen hundred pounds of Moneyes,
and Gold, and Siluer, is her Grand-sire vpon his deaths-
bed, (Got deliuer to a ioyfull resurrections) giue, when
she is able to ouertake seuenteene yeeres old. It were a
55goot motion, if we leaue our pribbles and prabbles, and
desire a marriage betweene Master Abraham, and Mistris
Anne Page.
Slen. Did her Grand-sire leaue her seauen hundred
pound?
60Euan. I, and her father is make her a petter penny.
Slen. I know the young Gentlewoman, she has good
gifts.
Euan. Seuen hundred pounds, and possibilities, is
goot gifts.
65Shal. Wel, let vs see honest Mr Page: is Falstaffe there?
Euan. Shall I tell you a lye? I doe despise a lyer, as I
doe despise one that is false, or as I despise one that is not
true: the Knight Sir Iohn is there, and I beseech you be
ruled by your well-willers: I will peat the doore for Mr.
70Page. What hoa? Got-plesse your house heere.
Mr. Page. Who's there?
Euan. Here is go't's plessing and your friend, and Iu-
stice Shallow, and heere yong Master Slender: that perad-
uentures shall tell you another tale, if matters grow to
75your likings.
Mr. Page. I am glad to see your Worships well: I
thanke you for my Venison Master Shallow.
Shal. Master Page, I am glad to see you: much good
doe it your good heart: I wish'd your Venison better, it
80was ill killd: how doth good Mistresse Page? and I thank
you alwaies with my heart, la: with my heart.
M. Page. Sir, I thanke you.
Shal. Sir, I thanke you: by yea, and no I doe.
M. Pa. I am glad to see you, good Master Slender.
85Slen. How do's your fallow Greyhound, Sir, I heard
say he was out-run on Cotsall.
M. Pa. It could not be iudg'd, Sir.
Slen. You'll not confesse: you'll not confesse.
Shal. That he will not, 'tis your fault, 'tis your fault:
90'tis a good dogge.
M. Pa. A Cur, Sir.
Shal. Sir: hee's a good dog, and a faire dog, can there
be more said? he is good, and faire. Is Sir Iohn Falstaffe
heere?
95M. Pa. Sir, hee is within: and I would I could doe a
good office betweene you.
Euan. It is spoke as a Christians ought to speake.
Shal. He hath wrong'd me (Master Page.)
M. Pa. Sir, he doth in some sort confesse it.
100Shal. If it be confessed, it is not redressed; is not that
so (M. Page?) he hath wrong'd me, indeed he hath, at a
word he hath: beleeue me, Robert Shallow Esquire, saith
he is wronged.
Ma. Pa. Here comes Sir Iohn.
105Fal. Now, Master Shallow, you'll complaine of me to
the King?
Shal. Knight, you haue beaten my men, kill'd my
deere, and broke open my Lodge.
Fal. But not kiss'd your Keepers daughter?
110Shal. Tut, a pin: this shall be answer'd.
Fal. I will answere it strait, I haue done all this:
That is now answer'd.
Shal. The Councell shall know this.
Fal. 'Twere better for you if it were known in coun-
115cell: you'll be laugh'd at.
Eu. Pauca verba; (Sir Iohn) good worts.
Fal. Good worts? good Cabidge; Slender, I broke
your head: what matter haue you against me?
Slen. Marry sir, I haue matter in my head against you,
120and against your cony-catching Rascalls, Bardolf, Nym,
and Pistoll.
Bar. You Banbery Cheese.
Slen. I, it is no matter.
Pist. How now, Mephostophilus?
125Slen. I, it is no matter.
Nym. Slice, I say; pauca, pauca: Slice, that's my humor.
Slen. Where's Simple my man? can you tell, Cosen?
Eua. Peace, I pray you: now let vs vnderstand: there
is three Vmpires in this matter, as I vnderstand; that is,
130Master Page (fidelicet Master Page,) & there is my selfe,
(fidelicet my selfe) and the three party is (lastly, and fi-
nally) mine Host of the Gater.
Ma. Pa. We three to hear it, & end it between them.
Euan. Ferry goo't, I will make a priefe of it in my
135note-booke, and we wil afterwards orke vpon the cause,
with as great discreetly as we can.
Fal. Pistoll.
Pist. He heares with eares.
Euan. The Teuill and his Tam: what phrase is this?
140he heares with eare? why, it is affectations.
Fal. Pistoll, did you picke M. Slenders purse?
Slen. I, by these gloues did hee, or I would I might
neuer come in mine owne great chamber againe else, of
seauen groates in mill-sixpences, and two Edward Sho-
145uelboords, that cost me two shilling and two pence a
peece of Yead Miller: by these gloues.
Fal. Is this true, Pistoll?
Euan. No, it is false, if it is a picke-purse.
Pist. Ha, thou mountaine Forreyner: Sir Iohn, and
150Master mine, I combat challenge of this Latine Bilboe:
word of deniall in thy labras here; word of denial; froth,
and scum thou liest.
Slen. By these gloues, then 'twas he.
Nym. Be auis'd sir, and passe good humours: I will
155say marry trap with you, if you runne the nut-hooks hu-
mor on me, that is the very note of it.
Slen. By this hat, then he in the red face had it: for
though I cannot remember what I did when you made
me drunke, yet I am not altogether an asse.
160Fal. What say you Scarlet, and Iohn?
Bar. Why sir, (for my part) I say the Gentleman had
drunke himselfe out of his fiue sentences.
Eu. It is his fiue sences: fie, what the ignorance is.
Bar. And being fap, sir, was (as they say) casheerd: and
165so conclusions past the Car-eires.
Slen. I, you spake in Latten then to: but 'tis no mat-
ter; Ile nere be drunk whilst I liue againe, but in honest,
ciuill, godly company for this tricke: if I be drunke, Ile
be drunke with those that haue the feare of God, and not
170with drunken knaues.
Euan. So got-udge me, that is a vertuous minde.
Fal. You heare all these matters deni'd, Gentlemen;
you heare it.
Mr. Page. Nay daughter, carry the wine in, wee'll
175drinke within.
Slen. Oh heauen: This is Mistresse Anne Page.
Mr. Page. How now Mistris Ford?
Fal. Mistris Ford, by my troth you are very wel met:
by your leaue good Mistris.
180Mr. Page. Wife, bid these gentlemen welcome: come,
we haue a hot Venison pasty to dinner; Come gentle-
men, I hope we shall drinke downe all vnkindnesse.
Slen. I had rather then forty shillings I had my booke
of Songs and Sonnets heere: How now Simple, where
185haue you beene? I must wait on my selfe, must I? you
haue not the booke of Riddles about you, haue you?
Sim. Booke of Riddles? why did you not lend it to
Alice Short-cake vpon Alhallowmas last, a fortnight a-
fore Michaelmas.
190Shal. Come Coz, come Coz, we stay for you: a word
with you Coz: marry this, Coz: there is as 'twere a ten-
der, a kinde of tender, made a farre-off by Sir Hugh here:
doe you vnderstand me?
Slen. I Sir, you shall finde me reasonable; if it be so,
195I shall doe that that is reason.
Shal. Nay, but vnderstand me.
Slen. So I doe Sir.
Euan. Giue eare to his motions; (Mr. Slender) I will
description the matter to you, if you be capacity of it.
200Slen. Nay, I will doe as my Cozen Shallow saies: I
pray you pardon me, he's a Iustice of Peace in his Coun-
trie, simple though I stand here.
Euan. But that is not the question: the question is
concerning your marriage.
205Shal. I, there's the point Sir.
Eu. Marry is it: the very point of it, to Mi. An Page.
Slen. Why if it be so; I will marry her vpon any rea-
sonable demands.
Eu. But can you affection the 'o-man, let vs command
210to know that of your mouth, or of your lips: for diuers
Philosophers hold, that the lips is parcell of the mouth:
therfore precisely, cā you carry your good wil to ye maid?
Sh. Cosen Abraham Slender, can you loue her?
Slen. I hope sir, I will do as it shall become one that
215would doe reason.
Eu. Nay, got's Lords, and his Ladies, you must speake
possitable, if you can carry-her your desires towards her.
Shal. That you must:
Will you, (vpon good dowry) marry her?
220Slen. I will doe a greater thing then that, vpon your
request (Cosen) in any reason.
Shal. Nay conceiue me, conceiue mee, (sweet Coz):
what I doe is to pleasure you (Coz:) can you loue the
maid?
225Slen. I will marry her (Sir) at your request; but if
there bee no great loue in the beginning, yet Heauen
may decrease it vpon better acquaintance, when wee
are married, and haue more occasion to know one ano-
ther: I hope vpon familiarity will grow more content:
230but if you say mary-her, I will mary-her, that I am freely
dissolued, and dissolutely.
Eu. It is a fery discetion-answere; saue the fall is in
the 'ord, dissolutely: the ort is (according to our mea-
ning) resolutely: his meaning is good.
235Sh. I: I thinke my Cosen meant well.
Sl. I, or else I would I might be hang'd (la.)
Sh. Here comes faire Mistris Anne; would I were
yong for your sake, Mistris Anne.
An. The dinner is on the Table, my Father desires
240your worships company.
Sh. I will wait on him, (faire Mistris Anne.)
Eu. Od's plessed-wil: I wil not be absēce at the grace.
An. Wil't please your worship to come in, Sir?
Sl. No, I thank you forsooth, hartely; I am very well.
245An. The dinner attends you, Sir.
Sl. I am not a-hungry, I thanke you, forsooth: goe,
Sirha, for all you are my man, goe wait vpon my Cosen
Shallow: a Iustice of peace sometime may be beholding
to his friend, for a Man; I keepe but three Men, and a
250Boy yet, till my Mother be dead: but what though, yet
I liue like a poore Gentleman borne.
An. I may not goe in without your worship: they
will not sit till you come.
Sl. I'faith, ile eate nothing: I thanke you as much as
255though I did.
An. I pray you Sir walke in.
Sl. I had rather walke here (I thanke you) I bruiz'd
my shin th'other day, with playing at Sword and Dag-
ger with a Master of Fence (three veneys for a dish of
260stew'd Prunes) and by my troth, I cannot abide the smell
of hot meate since. Why doe your dogs barke so? be
there Beares ith' Towne?
An. I thinke there are, Sir, I heard them talk'd of.
Sl. I loue the sport well, but I shall as soone quarrell
265at it, as any man in England: you are afraid if you see the
Beare loose, are you not?
An. I indeede Sir.
Sl. That's meate and drinke to me now: I haue seene
Sackerson loose, twenty times, and haue taken him by the
270Chaine: but (I warrant you) the women haue so cride
and shrekt at it, that it past: But women indeede, cannot
abide 'em, they are very ill-fauour'd rough things.
Ma. Pa. Come, gentle M. Slender, come; we stay for you.
Sl. Ile eate nothing, I thanke you Sir.
275Ma. Pa. By cocke and pie, you shall not choose, Sir:
come, come.
Sl. Nay, pray you lead the way.
Ma. Pa. Come on, Sir.
Sl. Mistris Anne: your selfe shall goe first.
280An. Not I Sir, pray you keepe on.
Sl. Truely I will not goe first: truely-la: I will not
doe you that wrong.
An. I pray you Sir.
Sl. Ile rather be vnmannerly, then troublesome: you
285doe your selfe wrong indeede-la.
Exeunt.
Scena Secunda.
Enter Euans, and Simple.
Eu. Go your waies, and aske of Doctor Caius house,
which is the way; and there dwels one Mistris Quickly;
290which is in the manner of his Nurse; or his dry-Nurse; or
his Cooke; or his Laundry; his Washer, and his Ringer.
Si. Well Sir.
Eu. Nay, it is petter yet: giue her this letter; for it is
a 'oman that altogeathers acquaintāce with Mistris Anne
295Page; and the Letter is to desire, and require her to soli-
cite your Masters desires, to Mistris Anne Page: I pray
you be gon: I will make an end of my dinner; ther's Pip-
pins and Cheese to come.
Exeunt.
Scena Tertia.
300
Enter Falstaffe, Host, Bardolfe, Nym, Pistoll, Page.
Fal. Mine Host of the Garter?
Ho. What saies my Bully Rooke? speake schollerly,
and wisely.
Fal. Truely mine Host; I must turne away some of my
305followers.
Ho. Discard, (bully Hercules) casheere; let them wag;
trot, trot.
Fal. I sit at ten pounds a weeke.
Ho. Thou'rt an Emperor (Cesar, Keiser and Pheazar)
310I will entertaine Bardolfe: he shall draw; he shall tap; said
I well (bully Hector?)
Fa. Doe so (good mine Host.
Ho. I haue spoke; let him follow; let me see thee froth,
and liue: I am at a word: follow.
315Fal. Bardolfe, follow him: a Tapster is a good trade:
an old Cloake, makes a new Ierkin: a wither'd Seruing-
man, a fresh Tapster: goe, adew.
Ba. It is a life that I haue desir'd: I will thriue.
Pist. O base hungarian wight: wilt yu the spigot wield.
320Ni. He was gotten in drink: is not the humor cōceited?
Fal. I am glad I am so acquit of this Tinderbox: his
Thefts were too open: his filching was like an vnskilfull
Singer, he kept not time.
Ni. The good humor is to steale at a minutes rest.
325Pist. Conuay: the wise it call: Steale? foh: a fico for
the phrase.
Fal. Well sirs, I am almost out at heeles.
Pist. Why then let Kibes ensue.
Fal. There is no remedy: I must conicatch, I must shift.
330Pist. Yong Rauens must haue foode.
Fal. Which of you know Ford of this Towne?
Pist. I ken the wight: he is of substance good.
Fal. My honest Lads, I will tell you what I am about.
Pist. Two yards, and more.
335Fal. No quips now Pistoll: (Indeede I am in the waste
two yards about: but I am now about no waste: I am a-
bout thrift) briefely: I doe meane to make loue to Fords
wife: I spie entertainment in her: shee discourses: shee
carues: she giues the leere of inuitation: I can construe
340the action of her familier stile, & the hardest voice of her
behauior (to be english'd rightly) is, I am Sir Iohn Falstafs.
Pist. He hath studied her will; and translated her will:
out of honesty, into English.
Ni. The Anchor is deepe: will that humor passe?
345Fal. Now, the report goes, she has all the rule of her
husbands Purse: he hath a legend of Angels.
Pist. As many diuels entertaine: and to her Boy say I.
Ni. The humor rises: it is good: humor me the angels.
Fal. I haue writ me here a letter to her: & here ano-
350ther to Pages wife, who euen now gaue mee good eyes
too; examind my parts with most iudicious illiads: some-
times the beame of her view, guilded my foote: some-
times my portly belly.
Pist. Then did the Sun on dung-hill shine.
355Ni. I thanke thee for that humour.
Fal. O she did so course o're my exteriors with such
a greedy intention, that the appetite of her eye, did seeme
to scorch me vp like a burning-glasse: here's another
letter to her: She beares the Purse too: She is a Region
360in Guiana: all gold, and bountie: I will be Cheaters to
them both, and they shall be Exchequers to mee: they
shall be my East and West Indies, and I will trade to
them both: Goe, beare thou this Letter to Mistris Page;
and thou this to Mistris Ford: we will thriue (Lads) we
365will thriue.
Pist. Shall I Sir Pandarus of Troy become,
And by my side weare Steele? then Lucifer take all.
Ni. I will run no base humor: here take the humor-Letter;
I will keepe the hauior of reputation.
370Fal. Hold Sirha, beare you these Letters tightly,
Saile like my Pinnasse to these golden shores.
Rogues, hence, auaunt, vanish like haile-stones; goe,
Trudge; plod away ith' hoofe: seeke shelter, packe:
Falstaffe will learne the honor of the age,
375French-thrift, you Rogues, my selfe, and skirted Page.
Pist. Let Vultures gripe thy guts: for gourd, and
Fullam holds: & high and low beguiles the rich & poore,
Tester ile haue in pouch when thou shalt lacke,
Base Phrygian Turke.
380Ni. I haue opperations,
Which be humors of reuenge.
Pist. Wilt thou reuenge?
Ni. By Welkin, and her Star.
Pist. With wit, or Steele?
385Ni. With both the humors, I:
I will discusse the humour of this Loue to Ford.
Pist. And I to Page shall eke vnfold
How Falstaffe (varlet vile)
His Doue will proue; his gold will hold,
390And his soft couch defile.
Ni. My humour shall not coole: I will incense Ford
to deale with poyson: I will possesse him with yallow-
nesse, for the reuolt of mine is dangerous: that is my
true humour.
395Pist. Thou art the Mars of Malecontents: I second
thee: troope on.
Exeunt.
Scoena Quarta.
Enter Mistris Quickly, Simple, Iohn Rugby, Doctor,
Caius, Fenton.
400Qu. What, Iohn Rugby, I pray thee goe to the Case-
ment, and see if you can see my Master, Master Docter
Caius comming: if he doe (I' faith) and finde any body
in the house; here will be an old abusing of Gods pati-
ence, and the Kings English.
405Ru. Ile goe watch.
Qu. Goe, and we'll haue a posset for't soone at night,
(in faith) at the latter end of a Sea-cole-fire: An honest,
willing, kinde fellow, as euer seruant shall come in house
withall: and I warrant you, no tel-tale, nor no breede-
410bate: his worst fault is, that he is giuen to prayer; hee is
something peeuish that way: but no body but has his
fault: but let that passe. Peter Simple, you say your
name is?
Si. I: for fault of a better.
415Qu. And Master Slender's your Master?
Si. I forsooth.
Qu. Do's he not weare a great round Beard, like a
Glouers pairing-knife?
Si. No forsooth: he hath but a little wee-face; with
420a little yellow Beard: a Caine colourd Beard.
Qu. A softly-sprighted man, is he not?
Si. I forsooth: but he is as tall a man of his hands, as
any is betweene this and his head: he hath fought with
a Warrener.
425Qu. How say you: oh, I should remember him: do's
he not hold vp his head (as it were?) and strut in his gate?
Si. Yes indeede do's he.
Qu. Well, heauen send Anne Page, no worse fortune:
Tell Master Parson Euans, I will doe what I can for your
430Master: Anne is a good girle, and I wish ---
Ru. Out alas: here comes my Master.
Qu. We shall all be shent: Run in here, good young
man: goe into this Closset: he will not stay long: what
Iohn Rugby? Iohn: what Iohn I say? goe Iohn, goe en-
435quire for my Master, I doubt he be not well, that hee
comes not home: (and downe, downe, adowne'a. &c.
Ca. Vat is you sing? I doe not like des-toyes: pray
you goe and vetch me in my Closset, vnboyteene verd;
a Box, a greene-a-Box: do intend vat I speake? a greene-
440a-Box.
Qu. I forsooth ile fetch it you:
I am glad hee went not in himselfe: if he had found the
yong man he would haue bin horne-mad.
Ca. Fe, fe, fe, fe, mai foy, il fait for ehando, Ie man voi a le
445Court la grand affaires.
Qu. Is it this Sir?
Ca. Ouy mette le au mon pocket, de-peech quickly:
Vere is dat knaue Rugby?
Qu. What Iohn Rugby, Iohn?
450Ru. Here Sir.
Ca. You are Iohn Rugby, aad you are Iacke Rugby:
Come, take-a-your Rapier, and come after my heele to
the Court.
Ru. 'Tis ready Sir, here in the Porch.
455Ca. By my trot: I tarry too long: od's-me: que ay ie
oublie: dere is some Simples in my Closset, dat I vill not
for the varld I shall leaue behinde.
Qu. Ay-me, he'll finde the yong man there, & be mad.
Ca. O Diable, Diable: vat is in my Closset?
460Villanie, La-roone: Rugby, my Rapier.
Qu. Good Master be content.
Ca. Wherefore shall I be content-a?
Qu. The yong man is an honest man.
Ca. What shall de honest man do in my Closset: dere
465is no honest man dat shall come in my Closset.
Qu. I beseech you be not so flegmaticke: heare the
truth of it. He came of an errand to mee, from Parson
Hugh.
Ca. Vell.
470Si. I forsooth: to desire her to ---
Qu. Peace, I pray you.
Ca. Peace-a-your tongue: speake-a-your Tale.
Si. To desire this honest Gentlewoman (your Maid)
to speake a good word to Mistris Anne Page, for my Ma-
475ster in the way of Marriage.
Qu. This is all indeede-la: but ile nere put my finger
in the fire, and neede not.
Ca. Sir Hugh send-a you? Rugby, ballow mee some
paper: tarry you a littell-a-while.
480Qui. I am glad he is so quiet: if he had bin through-
ly moued, you should haue heard him so loud, and so me-
lancholly: but notwithstanding man, Ile doe yoe your
Master what good I can: and the very yea, & the no is, ye
French Doctor my Master, (I may call him my Master,
485looke you, for I keepe his house; and I wash, ring, brew,
bake, scowre, dresse meat and drinke, make the beds, and
doe all my selfe.)
Simp. 'Tis a great charge to come vnder one bodies
hand.
490Qui. Are you a-uis'd o'that? you shall finde it a great
charge: and to be vp early, and down late: but notwith-
standing, (to tell you in your eare, I wold haue no words
of it) my Master himselfe is in loue with Mistris Anne
Page: but notwithstanding that I know Ans mind, that's
495neither heere nor there.
Caius. You, Iack'Nape: giue-'a this Letter to Sir
Hugh, by gar it is a shallenge: I will cut his troat in de
Parke, and I will teach a scuruy Iack-a-nape Priest to
meddle, or make:--- you may be gon: it is not good
500you tarry here: by gar I will cut all his two stones: by
gar, he shall not haue a stone to throw at his dogge.
Qui. Alas: he speakes but for his friend.
Caius. It is no matter 'a ver dat: do not you tell-a-me
dat I shall haue Anne Page for my selfe? by gar, I vill
505kill de Iack-Priest: and I haue appointed mine Host of
de Iarteer to measure our weapon: by gar, I wil my selfe
haue Anne Page.
Qui. Sir, the maid loues you, and all shall bee well:
We must giue folkes leaue to prate: what the good-ier.
Caius. Rugby, come to the Court with me: by gar, if
I haue not Anne Page, I shall turne your head out of my
dore: follow my heeles, Rugby.
Qui. You shall haue An-fooles head of your owne:
No, I know Ans mind for that: neuer a woman in Wind-
515sor knowes more of Ans minde then I doe, nor can doe
more then I doe with her, I thanke heauen.
Fenton. Who's with in there, hoa?
Qui. Who's there, I troa? Come neere the house I
pray you.
520Fen. How now (good woman) how dost thou?
Qui. The better that it pleases your good Worship
to aske?
Fen. What newes? how do's pretty Mistris Anne?
Qui. In truth Sir, and shee is pretty, and honest, and
525gentle, and one that is your friend, I can tell you that by
the way, I praise heauen for it.
Fen. Shall I doe any good thinkst thou? shall I not
loose my suit?
Qui. Troth Sir, all is in his hands aboue: but not-
530withstanding (Master Fenton) Ile be sworne on a booke
shee loues you: haue not your Worship a wart aboue
your eye?
Fen. Yes marry haue I, what of that?
Qui. Wel, thereby hangs a tale: good faith, it is such
535another Nan; (but (I detest) an honest maid as euer
broke bread: wee had an howres talke of that wart; I
shall neuer laugh but in that maids company: but (in-
deed) shee is giuen too much to Allicholy and musing:
but for you --- well --- goe too ---
540Fen. Well: I shall see her to day: hold, there's mo-
ney for thee: Let mee haue thy voice in my behalfe: if
thou seest her before me, commend me. ---
Qui. Will I? I faith that wee will: And I will tell
your Worship more of the Wart, the next time we haue
545confidence, and of other wooers.
Fen. Well, fare-well, I am in great haste now.
Qui. Fare-well to your Worship: truely an honest
Gentleman: but Anne loues hiim not: for I know Ans
minde as well as another do's: out vpon't: what haue I
550forgot.
Exit.
Actus Secundus. Scoena Prima.
Enter Mistris Page, Mistris Ford, Master Page, Master
Ford, Pistoll, Nim, Quickly, Host, Shallow.
Mist. Page. What, haue scap'd Loue-letters in the
555holly-day-time of my beauty, and am I now a subiect
for them? let me see?
Aske me no reason why I loue you, for though Loue vse Rea-
son for his precisian, hee admits him not for his Counsailour:
you are not yong, no more am I: goe to then, there's simpathie:
560you are merry, so am I: ha, ha, then there's more simpathie:
you loue sacke, and so do I: would you desire better simpathie?
Let it suffice thee (Mistris Page) at the least if the Loue of
Souldier can suffice, that I loue thee: I will not say pitty mee,
'tis not a Souldier-like phrase; but I say, loue me:
565
By me, thine owne true Knight, by day or night:
Or any kinde of light, with all his might,
For thee to fight. Iohn Falstaffe.
What a Herod of Iurie is this? O wicked, wicked world:
One that is well-nye worne to peeces with age
570To show himselfe a yong Gallant? What an vnwaied
Behauiour hath this Flemish drunkard pickt (with
The Deuills name) out of my conuersation, that he dares
In this manner assay me? why, hee hath not beene thrice
In my Company: what should I say to him? I was then
575Frugall of my mirth: (heauen forgiue mee:) why Ile
Exhibit a Bill in the Parliament for the putting downe
of men: how shall I be reueng'd on him? for reueng'd I
will be? as sure as his guts are made of puddings.
Mis Ford. Mistris Page, trust me, I was going to your
580house.
Mis Page. And trust me, I was comming to you: you
looke very ill.
Mis. Ford. Nay, Ile nere beleeee that; I haue to shew
to the contrary.
585Mis. Page. 'Faith but you doe in my minde.
Mis. Ford. Well: I doe then: yet I say, I could shew
you to the contrary: O Mistris Page, giue mee some
counsaile.
Mis. Page. What's the matter, woman?
590Mi. Ford. O woman: if it were not for one trifling re-
spect, I could come to such honour.
Mi. Page. Hang the trifle (woman) take the honour:
what is it? dispence with trifles: what is it?
Mi. Ford. If I would but goe to hell, for an eternall
595moment, or so: I could be knighted.
Mi. Page. What thou liest? Sir Alice Ford? these
Knights will hacke, and so thou shouldst not alter the ar-
ticle of thy Gentry.
Mi. Ford. Wee burne day-light: heere, read, read:
600perceiue how I might bee knighted, I shall thinke the
worse of fat men, as long as I haue an eye to make diffe-
rence of mens liking: and yet hee would not sweare:
praise womens modesty: and gaue such orderly and wel-
behaued reproofe to al vncomelinesse, that I would haue
605sworne his disposition would haue gone to the truth of
his words: but they doe no more adhere and keep place
together, then the hundred Psalms to the tune of Green-
sleeues: What tempest (I troa) threw this Whale, (with
so many Tuns of oyle in his belly) a'shoare at Windsor?
610How shall I bee reuenged on him? I thinke the best way
were, to entertaine him with hope, till the wicked fire
of lust haue melted him in his owne greace: Did you e-
uer heare the like?
Mis. Page. Letter for letter; but that the name of
615Page and Ford differs: to thy great comfort in this my-
stery of ill opinions, heere's the twyn-brother of thy Let-
ter: but let thine inherit first, for I protest mine neuer
shall: I warrant he hath a thousand of these Letters, writ
with blancke-space for different names (sure more): and
620these are of the second edition: hee will print them out
of doubt: for he cares not what hee puts into the presse,
when he would put vs two: I had rather be a Giantesse,
and lye vnder Mount Pelion: Well; I will find you twen-
tie lasciuious Turtles ere one chaste man.
625Mis. Ford. Why this is the very same: the very hand:
the very words: what doth he thinke of vs?
Mis. Page. Nay I know not: it makes me almost rea-
die to wrangle with mine owne honesty: Ile entertaine
my selfe like one that I am not acquainted withall: for
630sure vnlesse hee know some straine in mee, that I know
not my selfe, hee would neuer haue boorded me in this
furie.
Mi. Ford. Boording, call you it? Ile bee sure to keepe
him aboue decke.
635Mi. Page. So will I: if hee come vnder my hatches,
Ile neuer to Sea againe: Let's bee reueng'd on him: let's
appoint him a meeting: giue him a show of comfort in
his Suit, and lead him on with a fine baited delay, till hee
hath pawn'd his horses to mine Host of the Garter.
640Mi. Ford. Nay, I wil consent to act any villany against
him, that may not sully the charinesse of our honesty: oh
that my husband saw this Letter: it would giue eternall
food to his iealousie.
Mis. Page. Why look where he comes; and my good
645man too: hee's as farre from iealousie, as I am from gi-
uing him cause, and that (I hope) is an vnmeasurable di-
stance.
Mis. Ford. You are the happier woman.
Mis. Page. Let's consult together against this greasie
650Knight: Come hither.
Ford. Well: I hope, it be not so.
Pist. Hope is a curtall-dog in some affaires:
Sir Iohn affects thy wife.
Ford. Why sir, my wife is not young.
655Pist. He wooes both high and low, both rich & poor,
both yong and old, one with another (Ford) he loues the
Gally-mawfry (Ford) perpend.
Ford. Loue my wife?
Pist. With liuer, burning hot: preuent:
660Or goe thou like Sir Acteon he, with
Ring-wood at thy heeles: O, odious is the name.
Ford. What name Sir?
Pist. The horne I say: Farewell:
Take heed, haue open eye, for theeues doe foot by night.
665Take heed, ere sommer comes, or Cuckoo-birds do sing.
Away sir Corporall Nim:
Beleeue it (Page) he speakes sence.
Ford. I will be patient: I will find out this.
Nim. And this is true: I like not the humor of lying:
670hee hath wronged mee in some humors: I should haue
borne the humour'd Letter to her: but I haue a sword:
and it shall bite vpon my necessitie: he loues your wife;
There's the short and the long: My name is Corporall
Nim: I speak, and I auouch; 'tis true: my name is Nim:
675and Falstaffe loues your wife: adieu, I loue not the hu-
mour of bread and cheese: adieu.
Page. The humour of it (quoth 'a?) heere's a fellow
frights English out of his wits.
Ford. I will seeke out Falstaffe.
680Page. I neuer heard such a drawling-affecting rogue.
Ford. If I doe finde it: well.
Page. I will not beleeue such a Cataian, though the
Priest o'th'Towne commended him for a true man.
Ford. 'Twas a good sensible fellow: well.
685Page. How now Meg?
Mist. Page. Whether goe you (George?) harke you.
Mis. Ford. How now (sweet Frank) why art thou me-
lancholy?
Ford. I melancholy? I am not melancholy:
690Get you home: goe.
Mis. Ford. Faith, thou hast some crochets in thy head,
Now: will you goe, Mistris Page?
Mis. Page. Haue with you: you'll come to dinner
George? Looke who comes yonder: shee shall bee our
695Messenger to this paltrie Knight.
Mis. Ford. Trust me, I thought on her: shee'll fit it.
Mis. Page. You are come to see my daughter Anne?
Qui. I forsooth: and I pray how do's good Mistresse
Anne?
700Mis Page. Go in with vs and see: we haue an houres
talke with you.
Page. How now Master Ford?
For. You heard what this knaue told me, did you not?
Page. Yes, and you heard what the other told me?
705Ford. Doe you thinke there is truth in them?
Pag. Hang 'em slaues: I doe not thinke the Knight
would offer it: But these that accuse him in his intent
towards our wiues, are a yoake of his discarded men: ve-
ry rogues, now they be out of seruice.
710Ford. Were they his men?
Page. Marry were they.
Ford. I like it neuer the beter for that,
Do's he lye at the Garter?
Page. I marry do's he: if hee should intend this voy-
715age toward my wife, I would turne her loose to him;
and what hee gets more of her, then sharpe words, let it
lye on my head.
Ford. I doe not misdoubt my wife: but I would bee
loath to turne them together: a man may be too confi-
720dent: I would haue nothing lye on my head: I cannot
be thus satisfied.
Page. Looke where my ranting-Host of the Garter
comes: there is eyther liquor in his pate, or mony in his
purse, when hee lookes so merrily: How now mine
725Host?
Host. How now Bully-Rooke: thou'rt a Gentleman
Caueleiro Iustice, I say.
Shal. I follow, (mine Host) I follow: Good-euen,
and twenty (good Master Page.) Master Page, wil you go
730with vs? we haue sport in hand.
Host. Tell him Caueleiro-Iustice: tell him Bully-
Rooke.
Shall. Sir, there is a fray to be fought, betweene Sir
Hugh the Welch Priest, and Caius the French Doctor.
735Ford. Good mine Host o'th' Garter: a word with you.
Host. What saist thou, my Bully-Rooke?
Shal. Will you goe with vs to behold it? My merry
Host hath had the measuring of their weapons; and (I
thinke) hath appointed them contrary places: for (be-
740leeue mee) I heare the Parson is no Iester: harke, I will
tell you what our sport shall be.
Host. Hast thou no suit against my Knight? my guest-
Caualeire?
Shal. None, I protest: but Ile giue you a pottle of
745burn'd sacke, to giue me recourse to him, and tell him
my name is Broome: onely for a iest.
Host. My hand, (Bully:) thou shalt haue egresse and
regresse, (said I well?) and thy name shall be Broome. It
is a merry Knight: will you goe An-heires?
750Shal. Haue with you mine Host.
Page. I haue heard the French-man hath good skill
in his Rapier.
Shal. Tut sir: I could haue told you more: In these
times you stand on distance: your Passes, Stoccado's, and
755I know not what: 'tis the heart (Master Page) 'tis heere,
'tis heere: I haue seene the time, with my long-sword, I
would haue made you fowre tall fellowes skippe like
Rattes.
Host. Heere boyes, heere, heere: shall we wag?
760Page. Haue with you: I had rather heare them scold,
then fight.
Ford. Though Page be a secure foole, and stands so
firmely on his wiues frailty; yet, I cannot put-off my o-
pinion so easily: she was in his company at Pages house:
765and what they made there, I know not. Well, I wil looke
further into't, and I haue a disguise, to sound Falstaffe; if
I finde her honest, I loose not my labor: if she be other-
wise, 'tis labour well bestowed.
Exeunt.
Scoena Secunda.
770
Enter Falstaffe, Pistoll, Robin, Quickly, Bardolffe,
Ford.
Fal. I will not lend thee a penny.
Pist. Why then the world's mine Oyster, which I,
with sword will open.
775Fal. Not a penny: I haue beene content (Sir,) you
should lay my countenance to pawne: I haue grated vp-
on my good friends for three Repreeues for you, and
your Coach-fellow Nim; or else you had look'd through
the grate, like a Geminy of Baboones: I am damn'd in
780hell, for swearing to Gentlemen my friends, you were
good Souldiers, and tall-fellowes. And when Mistresse
Briget lost the handle of her Fan, I took't vpon mine ho-
nour thou hadst it not.
Pist. Didst not thou share? hadst thou not fifteene
785pence?
Fal. Reason, you roague, reason: thinkst thou Ile en-
danger my soule, gratis? at a word, hang no more about
mee, I am no gibbet for you: goe, a short knife, and a
throng, to your Mannor of Pickt-hatch: goe, you'll not
790beare a Letter for mee you roague? you stand vpon your
hononor: why, (thou vnconfinable basenesse) it is as much
as I can doe to keepe the termes of my honor precise:
I, I, I my selfe sometimes, leauing the feare of heauen on
the left hand, and hiding mine honor in my necessity, am
795faine to shufflle: to hedge, and to lurch, and yet, you
Rogue, will en-sconce your raggs; your Cat-a-Moun-
taine-lookes, your red-lattice phrases, and your bold-
beating-oathes, vnder the shelter of your honor? you
will not doe it? you?
800Pist. I doe relent: what would thou more of man?
Robin. Sir, here's a woman would speake with you.
Fal. Let her approach.
Qui. Giue your worship good morrow.
Fal. Good-morrow, good-wife.
805Qui. Not so and't please your worship.
Fal. Good maid then.
Qui. Ile be sworne,
As my mother was the first houre I was borne.
Fal. I doe beleeue the swearer; what with me?
810Qui. Shall I vouch-safe your worship a word, or
two?
Fal. Two thousand (faire woman) and ile vouchsafe
thee the hearing.
Qui. There is one Mistresse Ford, (Sir) I pray come a
815little neerer this waies: I my selfe dwell with M. Doctor
Caius:
Fal. Well, on; Mistresse Ford, you say.
Qui. Your worship saies very true: I pray your wor-
ship come a little neerer this waies.
820Fal. I warrant thee, no-bodie heares: mine owne
people, mine owne people.
Qui. Are they so? heauen-blesse them, and make
them his Seruants.
Fal. Well; Mistresse Ford, what of her?
825Qui. Why, Sir; shee's a good-creature; Lord, Lord,
your Worship's a wanton: well: heauen forgiue you,
and all of vs, I pray ---.
Fal. Mistresse Ford: come, Mistresse Ford.
Qui. Marry this is the short, and the long of it: you
830haue brought her into such a Canaries, as 'tis wonder-
full: the best Courtier of them all (when the Court lay
at Windsor) could neuer haue brought her to such a Ca-
narie: yet there has beene Knights, and Lords, and Gen-
tlemen, with their Coaches; I warrant you Coach after
835Coach, letter after letter, gift after gift, smelling so sweet-
ly; all Muske, and so rushling, I warrant you, in silke
and golde, and in such alligant termes, and in such wine
and suger of the best, and the fairest, that would haue
wonne any womans heart: and I warrant you, they could
840neuer get an eye-winke of her: I had my selfe twentie
Angels giuen me this morning, but I defie all Angels (in
any such sort, as they say) but in the way of honesty: and
I warrant you, they could neuer get her so much as sippe
on a cup with the prowdest of them all, and yet there has
845beene Earles: nay, (which is more) Pentioners, but I
warrant you all is one with her.
Fal. But what saies shee to mee? be briefe my good
shee-Mercurie.
Qui. Marry, she hath receiu'd your Letter: for the
850which she thankes you a thousand times; and she giues
you to notifie, that her husband will be absence from his
house, betweene ten and eleuen.
Fal. Ten, and eleuen.
Qui. I, forsooth: and then you may come and see the
855picture (she sayes) that you wot of: Master Ford her hus-
band will be from home: alas, the sweet woman leades
an ill life with him: hee's a very iealousie-man; she leads
a very frampold life with him, (good hart.)
Fal. Ten, and eleuen.
860Woman, commend me to her, I will not faile her.
Qui. Why, you say well: But I haue another messen-
ger to your worship: Mistresse Page hath her heartie
commendations to you to: and let mee tell you in your
eare, shee's as fartuous a ciuill modest wife, and one (I
865tell you) that will not misse you morning nor euening
prayer, as any is in Windsor, who ere bee the other: and
shee bade me tell your worship, that her husband is sel-
dome from home, but she hopes there will come a time.
I neuer knew a woman so doate vpon a man; surely I
870thinke you haue charmes, la: yes in truth.
Fal. Not I, I assure thee; setting the attraction of my
good parts aside, I haue no other charmes.
Qui. Blessing on your heart for't.
Fal. But I pray thee tell me this: has Fords wife, and
875Pages wife acquainted each other, how they loue me?
Qui. That were a iest indeed: they haue not so little
grace I hope, that were a tricke indeed: But Mistris Page
would desire you to send her your little Page of al loues:
her husband has a maruellous infectiō to the little Page:
880and truely Master Page is an honest man: neuer a wife in
Windsor leades a better life then she do's: doe what shee
will, say what she will, take all, pay all, goe to bed when
she list, rise when she list, all is as she will: and truly she
deserues it; for if there be a kinde woman in Windsor, she
885is one: you must send her your Page, no remedie.
Fal. Why, I will.
Qu. Nay, but doe so then, and looke you, hee may
come and goe betweene you both: and in any case haue
a nay-word, that you may know one anothers minde,
890and the Boy neuer neede to vnderstand any thing; for
'tis not good that children should know any wickednes:
olde folkes you know, haue discretion, as they say, and
know the world.
Fal. Farethee-well, commend mee to them both:
895there's my purse, I am yet thy debter: Boy, goe along
with this woman, this newes distracts me.
Pist. This Puncke is one of Cupids Carriers,
Clap on more sailes, pursue: vp with your sights:
Giue fire: she is my prize, or Ocean whelme them all.
900Fal. Saist thou so (old Iacke) go thy waies: Ile make
more of thy olde body then I haue done: will they yet
looke after thee? wilt thou after the expence of so much
money, be now a gainer? good Body, I thanke thee: let
them say 'tis grossely done, so it bee fairely done, no
905matter.
Bar. Sir Iohn, there's one Master Broome below would
faine speake with you, and be acquainted with you; and
hath sent your worship a mornings draught of Sacke.
Fal. Broome is his name?
910Bar. I Sir.
Fal. Call him in: such Broomes are welcome to mee,
that ore'flowes such liquor: ah ha, Mistresse Ford and Mi-
stresse Page, haue I encompass'd you? goe to, via.
Ford. 'Blesse you sir.
915Fal. And you sir: would you speake with me?
Ford. I make bold, to presse, with so little prepara-
tion vpon you.
Fal. You'r welcome, what's your will? giue vs leaue
Drawer.
920Ford. Sir, I am a Gentleman that haue spent much,
my name is Broome.
Fal. Good Master Broome, I desire more acquaintance
of you.
Ford. Good Sir Iohn, I sue for yours: not to charge
925you, for I must let you vnderstand, I thinke my selfe in
better plight for a Lender, then you are: the which hath
something emboldned me to this vnseason'd intrusion:
for they say, if money goe before, all waies doe lye
open.
930Fal. Money is a good Souldier (Sir) and will on.
Ford. Troth, and I haue a bag of money heere trou-
bles me: if you will helpe to beare it (Sir Iohn) take all,
or halfe, for easing me of the carriage.
Fal. Sir, I know not how I may deserue to bee your
935Porter.
Ford. I will tell you sir, if you will giue mee the hea-
ring.
Fal. Speake (good Master Broome) I shall be glad to
be your Seruant.
940Ford. Sir, I heare you are a Scholler: (I will be briefe
with you) and you haue been a man long knowne to me,
though I had neuer so good means as desire, to make my
selfe acquainted with you. I shall discouer a thing to
you, wherein I must very much lay open mine owne im-
945perfection: but (good Sir Iohn) as you haue one eye vp-
on my follies, as you heare them vnfolded, turne another
into the Register of your owne, that I may passe with a
reproofe the easier, sith you your selfe know how easie it
is to be such an offender.
950Fal. Very well Sir, proceed.
Ford. There is a Gentlewoman in this Towne, her
husbands name is Ford.
Fal. Well Sir.
Ford. I haue long lou'd her, and I protest to you, be-
955stowed much on her: followed her with a doating ob-
seruance: Ingross'd opportunities to meete her: fee'd e-
uery slight occasion that could but nigardly giue mee
sight of her: not only bought many presents to giue her,
but haue giuen largely to many, to know what shee
960would haue giuen: briefly, I haue pursu'd her, as Loue
hath pursued mee, which hath beene on the wing of all
occasions: but whatsoeuer I haue merited, either in my
minde, or in my meanes, meede I am sure I haue receiued
none, vnlesse Experience be a Iewell, that I haue purcha-
965sed at an infinite rate, and that hath taught mee to say
this,
"Loue like a shadow flies, when substance Loue pursues,
"Pursuing that that flies, and flying what pursues.
Fal. Haue you receiu'd no promise of satisfaction at
970her hands?
Ford. Neuer.
Fal. Haue you importun'd her to such a purpose?
Ford. Neuer.
Fal. Of what qualitie was your loue then?
975Ford. Like a fair house, built on another mans ground,
so that I haue lost my edifice, by mistaking the place,
where I erected it.
Fal. To what purpose haue you vnfolded this to me?
For. When I haue told you that, I haue told you all:
980Some say, that though she appeare honest to mee, yet in
other places shee enlargeth her mirth so farre, that there
is shrewd construction made of her. Now (Sir Iohn) here
is the heart of my purpose: you are a gentleman of ex-
cellent breeding, admirable discourse, of great admit-
985tance, authenticke in your place and person, generally
allow'd for your many war-like, court-like, and learned
preparations.
Fal. O Sir.
Ford. Beleeue it, for you know it: there is money,
990spend it, spend it, spend more; spend all I haue, onely
giue me so much of your time in enchange of it, as to lay
an amiable siege to the honesty of this Fords wife: vse
your Art of wooing; win her to consent to you: if any
man may, you may as soone as any.
995Fal. Would it apply well to the vehemency of your
affection that I should win what you would enioy? Me-
thinkes you prescribe to your selfe very preposterously.
Ford. O, vnderstand my drift: she dwells so securely
on the excellency of her honor, that the folly of my soule
1000dares not present it selfe: shee is too bright to be look'd
against. Now, could I come to her with any detection
in my hand; my desires had instance and argument to
commend themselues, I could driue her then from the
ward of her purity, her reputation, her marriage-vow,
1005and a thousand other her defences, which now are too-
too strongly embattaild against me: what say you too't,
Sir Iohn?
Fal. Master Broome, I will first make bold with your
money: next, giue mee your hand: and last, as I am a
1010gentleman, you shall, if you will, enioy Fords wife.
Ford. O good Sir.
Fal. I say you shall.
Ford. Want no money (Sir Iohn) you shall want none.
Fal. Want no Mistresse Ford (Master Broome) you shall
1015want none: I shall be with her (I may tell you) by her
owne appointment, euen as you came in to me, her assi-
stant, or goe-betweene, parted from me: I say I shall be
with her betweene ten and eleuen: for at that time the
iealious-rascally-knaue her husband will be forth: come
1020you to me at night, you shall know how I speed.
Ford. I am blest in your acquaintance: do you know
Ford Sir?
Fal. Hang him (poore Cuckoldly knaue) I know
him not: yet I wrong him to call him poore: They say
1025the iealous wittolly-knaue hath masses of money, for
the which his wife seemes to me well-fauourd: I will vse
her as the key of the Cuckoldly-rogues Coffer, & ther's
my haruest-home.
Ford. I would you knew Ford, sir, that you might a-
1030uoid him, if you saw him.
Fal. Hang him, mechanicall-salt-butter rogue; I wil
stare him out of his wits: I will awe-him with my cud-
gell: it shall hang like a Meteor ore the Cuckolds horns:
Master Broome, thou shalt know, I will predominate o-
1035uer the pezant, and thou shalt lye with his wife. Come
to me soone at night: Ford's a knaue, and I will aggra-
uate his stile: thou (Master Broome) shalt know him for
knaue, and Cuckold. Come to me soone at night.
Ford. What a damn'd Epicurian-Rascall is this? my
1040heart is ready to cracke with impatience: who saies this
is improuident iealousie? my wife hath sent to him, the
howre is fixt, the match is made: would any man haue
thought this? see the hell of hauing a false woman: my
bed shall be abus'd, my Coffers ransack'd, my reputati-
1045on gnawne at, and I shall not onely receiue this villanous
wrong, but stand vnder the adoption of abhominable
termes, and by him that does mee this wrong: Termes,
names: Amaimon sounds well: Lucifer, well: Barbason,
well: yet they are Diuels additions, the names of fiends:
1050But Cuckold, Wittoll, Cuckold? the Diuell himselfe
hath not such a name. Page is an Asse, a secure Asse; hee
will trust his wife, hee will not be iealous: I will rather
trust a Fleming with my butter, Parson Hugh the Welsh-
man with my Cheese, an Irish-man with my Aqua-vitæ-
1055bottle, or a Theefe to walke my ambling gelding, then
my wife with her selfe. Then she plots, then shee rumi-
nates, then shee deuises: and what they thinke in their
hearts they may effect; they will breake their hearts but
they will effect. Heauen bee prais'd for my iealousie:
1060eleuen o'clocke the howre, I will preuent this, detect
my wife, bee reueng'd on Falstaffe, and laugh at Page. I
will about it, better three houres too soone, then a my-
nute too late: fie, fie, fie: Cuckold, Cuckold, Cuckold.
Exti.
1065
Scena Tertia.
Enter Caius, Rugby, Page, Shallow, Slender, Host.
Caius. Iacke Rugby.
Rug. Sir.
Caius. Vat is the clocke, Iack.
1070Rug. 'Tis past the howre (Sir) that Sir Hugh promis'd
to meet.
Cai. By gar, he has saue his soule, dat he is no-come:
hee has pray his Pible well, dat he is no-come: by gar
(Iack Rugby) he is dead already, if he be come.
1075Rug. Hee is wise Sir: hee knew your worship would
kill him if he came.
Cai. By gar, de herring is no dead, so as I vill kill
him: take your Rapier, (Iacke) I vill tell you how I vill
kill him.
1080Rug. Alas sir, I cannot fence.
Cai. Villanie, take your Rapier.
Rug. Forbeare: heer's company.
Host. 'Blesse thee, bully-Doctor.
Shal. 'Saue you Mr. Doctor Caius.
1085Page. Now good Mr. Doctor.
Slen. 'Giue you good-morrow, sir.
Caius. Vat be all you one, two, tree, fowre, come for?
Host. To see thee fight, to see thee foigne, to see thee
trauerse, to see thee heere, to see thee there, to see thee
1090passe thy puncto, thy stock, thy reuerse, thy distance, thy
montant: Is he dead, my Ethiopian? Is he dead, my Fran-
cisco? ha Bully? what saies my Esculapius? my Galien? my
heart of Elder? ha? is he dead bully-Stale? is he dead?
Cai. By gar, he is de Coward-Iack-Priest of de vorld:
1095he is not show his face.
Host. Thou art a Castalion-king-Vrinall: Hector of
Greece (my Boy)
Cai. I pray you beare witnesse, that me haue stay,
sixe or seuen, two tree howres for him, and hee is no-
1100come.
Shal. He is the wiser man (M. Docto)rhe is a curer of
soules, and you a curer of bodies: if you should fight, you
goe against the haire of your professions: is it not true,
Master Page?
1105Page. Master Shallow; you haue your selfe beene a
great fighter, though now a man of peace.
Shal. Body-kins M. Page, though I now be old, and
of the peace; if I see a sword out, my finger itches to
make one: though wee are Iustices, and Doctors, and
1110Church-men (M. Page) wee haue some salt of our youth
in vs, we are the sons of women (M. Page.)
Page. 'Tis true, Mr. Shallow.
Shal. It wil be found so, (M. Page:) M. Doctor Caius,
I am come to fetch you home: I am sworn of the peace:
1115you haue show'd your selfe a wise Physician, and Sir
Hugh hath showne himselfe a wise and patient Church-
man: you must goe with me, M. Doctor.
Host. Pardon, Guest-Iustice; a Mounseur Mocke-
water.
1120Cai. Mock-vater? vat is dat?
Host. Mock-water, in our English tongue, is Valour
(Bully.)
Cai. By gar, then I haue as much Mock-vater as de
Englishman: scuruy-Iack-dog-Priest: by gar, mee vill
1125cut his eares.
Host. He will Clapper-claw thee tightly (Bully.)
Cai. Clapper-de-claw? vat is dat?
Host. That is, he will make thee amends.
Cai. By-gar, me doe looke hee shall clapper-de-claw
1130me, for by-gar, me vill haue it.
Host. And I will prouoke him to't, or let him wag.
Cai. Me tanck you for dat.
Host. And moreouer, (Bully) but first, Mr. Ghuest,
and M. Page, & eeke Caualeiro Slender, goe you through
1135the Towne to Frogmore.
Page. Sir Hugh is there, is he?
Host. He is there, see what humor he is in: and I will
bring the Doctor about by the Fields: will it doe well?
Shal. We will doe it.
1140All. Adieu, good M. Doctor.
Cai. By-gar, me vill kill de Priest, for he speake for a
Iack-an-Ape to Anne Page.
Host. Let him die: sheath thy impatience: throw cold
water on thy Choller: goe about the fields with mee
1145through Frogmore, I will bring thee where Mistris Anne
Page is, at a Farm-house a Feasting: and thou shalt wooe
her: Cride-game, said I well?
Cai. By-gar, mee dancke you vor dat: by gar I loue
you: and I shall procure 'a you de good Guest: de Earle,
1150de Knight, de Lords, de Gentlemen, my patients.
Host. For the which, I will be thy aduersary toward
Anne Page: said I well?
Cai. By-gar, 'tis good: vell said.
Host. Let vs wag then.
1155Cai. Come at my heeles, Iack Rugby.
Exeunt.
Actus Tertius. Scoena Prima.
Enter Euans, Simple, Page, Shallow, Slender, Host, Caius,
Rugby.
1160Euans. I pray you now, good Master Slenders seruing-
man, and friend Simple by your name; which way haue
you look'd for Master Caius, that calls himselfe Doctor
of Phisicke.
Sim. Marry Sir, the pittie-ward, the Parke-ward:
1165euery way: olde Windsor way, and euery way but the
Towne-way.
Euan. I most fehemently desire you, you will also
looke that way.
Sim. I will sir.
1170Euan. 'Plesse my soule: how full of Chollors I am, and
trempling of minde: I shall be glad if he haue deceiued
me: how melancholies I am? I will knog his Vrinalls a-
bout his knaues costard, when I haue good oportunities
for the orke: 'Plesse my soule: To shallow Ruiers to whose
1175falls: melodious Birds sings Madrigalls: There will we make
our Peds of Roses: and a thousand fragrant posies. To shal-
low: 'Mercie on mee, I haue a great dispositions to cry.
Melodious birds sing Madrigalls: --- When as I sat in Pa-
bilon: and a thousand vagram Posies. To shallow, &c.
1180Sim. Yonder he is comming, this way, Sir Hugh.
Euan. Hee's welcome: To shallow Riuers, to whose fals:
Heauen prosper the right: what weapons is he?
Sim. No weapons, Sir: there comes my Master, Mr.
Shallow, and another Gentleman; from Frogmore, ouer
1185the stile, this way.
Euan. Pray you giue mee my gowne, or else keepe it
in your armes.
Shal. How now Master Parson? good morrow good
Sir Hugh: keepe a Gamester from the dice, and a good
1190Studient from his booke, and it is wonderfull.
Slen. Ah sweet Anne Page.
Page. 'Saue you, good Sir Hugh.
Euan. 'Plesse you from his mercy-sake, all of you.
Shal. What? the Sword, and the Word?
1195Doe you study them both, Mr. Parson?
Page. And youthfull still, in your doublet and hose,
this raw-rumaticke day?
Euan. There is reasons, and causes for it.
Page. We are come to you, to doe a good office, Mr.
1200Parson.
Euan. Fery-well: what is it?
Page. Yonder is a most reuerend Gentleman; who
(be-like) hauing receiued wrong by some person, is at
most odds with his owne grauity and patience, that euer
1205you saw.
Shal. I haue liued foure-score yeeres, and vpward: I
neuer heard a man of his place, grauity, and learning, so
wide of his owne respect.
Euan. What is he?
1210Page. I thinke you know him: Mr. Doctor Caius the
renowned French Physician.
Euan. Got's-will, and his passion of my heart: I had
as lief you would tell me of a messe of porredge.
Page. Why?
1215Euan. He has no more knowledge in Hibocrates and
Galen, and hee is a knaue besides: a cowardly knaue, as
you would desires to be acquainted withall.
Page. I warrant you, hee's the man should fight with
him.
1220Slen. O sweet Anne Page.
Shal. It appeares so by his weapons: keepe them a-
sunder: here comes Doctor Caius.
Page. Nay good Mr. Parson, keepe in your weapon.
Shal. So doe you, good Mr. Doctor.
1225Host. Disarme them, and let them question: let them
keepe their limbs whole, and hack our English.
Cai. I pray you let-a-mee speake a word with your
eare; vherefore vill you not meet-a me?
Euan. Pray you vse your patience in good time.
1230Cai. By-gar, you are de Coward: de Iack dog: Iohn
Ape.
Euan. Pray you let vs not be laughing-stocks to other
mens humors: I desire you in friendship, and I will one
way or other make you amends: I will knog your Vrinal
1235about your knaues Cogs-combe.
Cai. Diable: Iack Rugby: mine Host de Iarteer: haue I
not stay for him, to kill him? haue I not at de place I did
appoint?
Euan. As I am a Christians-soule, now looke you:
1240this is the place appointed, Ile bee iudgement by mine
Host of the Garter.
Host. Peace, I say, Gallia and Gaule, French & Welch,
Soule-Curer, and Body-Curer.
Cai. I, dat is very good, excellant.
1245Host. Peace, I say: heare mine Host of the Garter,
Am I politicke? Am I subtle? Am I a Machiuell?
Shall I loose my Doctor? No, hee giues me the Potions
and the Motions. Shall I loose my Parson? my Priest?
my Sir Hugh? No, he giues me the Prouerbes, and the
1250No-verbes. Giue me thy hand (Celestiall) so: Boyes of
Art, I haue deceiu'd you both: I haue directed you to
wrong places: your hearts are mighty, your skinnes are
whole, and let burn'd Sacke be the issue: Come, lay their
swords to pawne: Follow me, Lad of peace, follow, fol-
1255low, follow.
Shal. Trust me, a mad Host: follow Gentlemen, fol-
low.
Slen. O sweet Anne Page.
Cai. Ha' do I perceiue dat? Haue you make-a-de-sot
1260of vs, ha, ha?
Eua. This is well, he has made vs his vlowting-stog:
I desire you that we may be friends: and let vs knog our
praines together to be reuenge on this same scall scur-
uy-cogging-companion the Host of the Garter.
1265Cai. By gar, with all my heart: he promise to bring
me where is Anne Page: by gar he deceiue me too.
Euan. Well, I will smite his noddles: pray you follow.
Scena Secunda.
Mist. Page, Robin, Ford, Page, Shallow, Slender, Host,
1270Euans, Caius.
Mist. Page. Nay keepe your way (little Gallant) you
were wont to be a follower, but now you are a Leader:
whether had you rather lead mine eyes, or eye your ma-
sters heeles?
1275Rob. I had rather (forsooth) go before you like a man,
then follow him like a dwarfe.
M. Pa. O you are a flattering boy, now I see you'l be a
Ford. Well met mistris Page, whether go you.
1280M. Pa. Truly Sir, to see your wife, is she at home?
Ford. I, and as idle as she may hang together for want
of company: I thinke if your husbands were dead, you
two would marry.
M. Pa. Be sure of that, two other husbands.
1285Ford. Where had you this pretty weather-cocke?
M. Pa. I cannot tell what (the dickens) his name is my
husband had him of, what do you cal your Knights name
Rob. Sir Iohn Falstaffe.
Ford. Sir Iohn Falstaffe.
1290M. Pa. He, he, I can neuer hit on's name; there is such a
league betweene my goodman, and he: is your Wife at
Ford. Indeed she is.
M. Pa. By your leaue sir, I am sicke till I see her.
Ford. Has Page any braines? Hath he any eies? Hath he
1295any thinking? Sure they sleepe, he hath no vse of them:
why this boy will carrie a letter twentie mile as easie, as
a Canon will shoot point-blanke twelue score: hee pee-
ces out his wiues inclination: he giues her folly motion
and aduantage: and now she's going to my wife, & Fal-
1300staffes boy with her: A man may heare this showre sing
in the winde; and Falstaffes boy with her: good plots,
they are laide, and our reuolted wiues share damnation
together. Well, I will take him, then torture my wife,
plucke the borrowed vaile of modestie from the so-see-
1305ming Mist. Page, divulge Page himselfe for a secure and
wilfull Acteon, and to these violent proceedings all my
neighbors shall cry aime. The clocke giues me my Qu,
and my assurance bids me search, there I shall finde Fal-
staffe: I shall be rather praisd for this, then mock'd, for
1310it is as possitiue, as the earth is firme, that Falstaffe is
there: I will go.
Shal. Page, &c. Well met Mr Ford.
Ford. Trust me, a good knotte; I haue good cheere at
home, and I pray you all go with me.
1315Shal. I must excuse my selfe Mr Ford.
Slen. And so must I Sir,
We haue appointed to dine with Mistris Anne,
And I would not breake with her for more mony
Then Ile speake of.
1320Shal. We haue linger'd about a match betweene An
Page, and my cozen Slender, and this day wee shall haue
our answer.
Slen. I hope I haue your good will Father Page.
Pag. You haue Mr Slender, I stand wholly for you,
1325But my wife (Mr Doctor) is for you altogether.
Cai. I be-gar, and de Maid is loue-a-me: my nursh-a-Quickly
tell me so mush.
Host. What say you to yong Mr Fenton? He capers,
he dances, he has eies of youth: he writes verses, hee
1330speakes holliday, he smels April and May, he wil carry't,
he will carry't, 'tis in his buttons, he will carry't.
Page. Not by my consent I promise you. The Gentle-
man is of no hauing, hee kept companie with the wilde
Prince, and Pointz: he is of too high a Region, he knows
1335too much: no, hee shall not knit a knot in his fortunes,
with the finger of my substance: if he take her, let him
take her simply: the wealth I haue waits on my consent,
and my consent goes not that way.
Ford. I beseech you heartily, some of you goe home
1340with me to dinner: besides your cheere you shall haue
sport, I will shew you a monster: Mr Doctor, you shal
go, so shall you Mr Page, and you Sir Hugh.
Shal. Well, fare you well:
We shall haue the freer woing at Mr Pages.
1345Cai. Go home Iohn Rugby, I come anon.
Host. Farewell my hearts, I will to my honest Knight
Falstaffe, and drinke Canarie with him.
Ford. I thinke I shall drinke in Pipe-wine first with
him, Ile make him dance. Will you go, Gentles?
1350All. Haue with you, to see this Monster.
Exeunt
Scena Tertia.
Enter M. Ford, M. Page, Seruants, Robin, Falstaffe,
Ford, Page, Caius, Euans.
Mist. Ford. What Iohn, what Robert.
1355M. Page. Quickly, quickly: Is the Buck-basket ---
Mis. Ford. I warrant. What Robin I say.
Mis. Page. Come, come, come.
Mist. Ford. Heere, set it downe.
M. Pag. Giue your men the charge, we must be briefe.
1360M. Ford. Marrie, as I told you before (Iohn & Robert)
be ready here hard-by in the Brew-house, & when I so-
dainly call you, come forth, and (without any pause, or
staggering) take this basket on your shoulders: yt done,
trudge with it in all hast, and carry it among the Whit-
1365sters in Dotchet Mead, and there empty it in the muddie
ditch, close by the Thames side.
M. Page. You will do it?
M. Ford. I ha told them ouer and ouer, they lacke no
Be gone, and come when you are call'd.
1370M. Page. Here comes little Robin.
Mist. Ford. How now my Eyas-Musket, what newes
Rob. My M. Sir Iohn is come in at your backe doore
(Mist. Ford, and requests your company.
M. Page. You litle Iack-a-lent, haue you bin true to vs
1375Rob. I, Ile be sworne: my Master knowes not of your
being heere: and hath threatned to put me into euerla-
sting liberty, if I tell you of it: for he sweares he'll turne
me away.
Mist. Pag. Thou'rt a good boy: this secrecy of thine
1380shall be a Tailor to thee, and shal make thee a new dou-
blet and hose. Ile go hide me.
Mi. Ford. Do so: go tell thy Master, I am alone: Mi-
stris Page, remember you your Qu.
Mist. Pag. I warrant thee, if I do not act it, hisse me.
1385Mist. Ford. Go-too then: we'l vse this vnwholsome
humidity, this grosse-watry Pumpion; we'll teach him
to know Turtles from Iayes.
Fal. Haue I caught thee, my heauenly Iewell? Why
now let me die, for I haue liu'd long enough: This is the
1390period of my ambition: O this blessed houre.
Mist. Ford. O sweet Sir Iohn.
Fal. Mistris Ford, I cannot cog, I cannot prate (Mist.
Ford) now shall I sin in my wish; I would thy Husband
were dead, Ile speake it before the best Lord, I would
1395make thee my Lady.
Mist. Ford. I your Lady Sir Iohn? Alas, I should bee a
pittifull Lady.
Fal. Let the Court of France shew me such another:
I see how thine eye would emulate the Diamond: Thou
1400hast the right arched-beauty of the brow, that becomes
the Ship-tyre, the Tyre-valiant, or any Tire of Venetian
admittance.
Mist. Ford. A plaine Kerchiefe, Sir Iohn:
My browes become nothing else, nor that well neither.
1405Fal. Thou art a tyrant to say so: thou wouldst make
an absolute Courtier, and the firme fixture of thy foote,
would giue an excellent motion to thy gate, in a semi-
circled Farthingale. I see what thou wert if Fortune thy
foe, were not Nature thy friend: Come, thou canst not
1410hide it.
Mist. Ford. Beleeue me, ther's no such thing in me.
Fal. What made me loue thee? Let that perswade
thee. Ther's something extraordinary in thee: Come, I
cannot cog, and say thou art this and that, like a-manie
1415of these lisping-hauthorne buds, that come like women
in mens apparrell, and smell like Bucklers-berry in sim-
ple time: I cannot, but I loue thee, none but thee; and
thou deseru'st it.
M. Ford. Do not betray me sir, I fear you loue M. Page.
1420Fal. Thou mightst as well say, I loue to walke by the
Counter-gate, which is as hatefull to me, as the reeke of
a Lime-kill.
Mis Ford. Well, heauen knowes how I loue you,
And you shall one day finde it.
1425Fal. Keepe in that minde, Ile deserue it.
Mist. Ford. Nay, I must tell you, so you doe;
Or else I could not be in that minde.
Rob. Mistris Ford, Mistris Ford: heere's Mistris Page at
the doore, sweating, and blowing, and looking wildely,
1430and would needs speake with you presently.
Fal. She shall not see me, I will ensconce mee behinde
the Arras.
M. Ford. Pray you do so, she's a very tatling woman.
Whats the matter? How now?
1435Mist. Page. O mistris Ford what haue you done?
You'r sham'd, y'are ouerthrowne, y'are vndone for euer.
M. Ford. What's the matter, good mistris Page?
M. Page. O weladay, mist. Ford, hauing an honest man
to your husband, to giue him such cause of suspition.
1440M. Ford. What cause of suspition?
M. Page. What cause of suspition? Out vpon you:
How am I mistooke in you?
M. Ford. Why (alas) what's the matter?
M. Page. Your husband's comming hether (Woman)
1445with all the Officers in Windsor, to search for a Gentle-
man, that he sayes is heere now in the house; by your
consent to take an ill aduantage of his absence: you are
vndone.
M. Ford. 'Tis not so, I hope.
1450M. Page. Pray heauen it be not so, that you haue such
a man heere: but 'tis most certaine your husband's com-
ming, with halfe Windsor at his heeles, to serch for such
a one, I come before to tell you: If you know your selfe
cleere, why I am glad of it: but if you haue a friend here,
1455conuey, conuey him out. Be not amaz'd, call all your
senses to you, defend your reputation, or bid farwell to
your good life for euer.
M. Ford. What shall I do? There is a Gentleman my
deere friend: and I feare not mine owne shame so much,
1460as his perill. I had rather then a thousand pound he were
out of the house.
M. Page. For shame, neuer stand (you had rather, and
you had rather:) your husband's heere at hand, bethinke
you of some conueyance: in the house you cannot hide
1465him. Oh, how haue you deceiu'd me? Looke, heere is a
basket, if he be of any reasonable stature, he may creepe
in heere, and throw fowle linnen vpon him, as if it were
going to bucking: Or it is whiting time, send him by
your two men to Datchet-Meade.
1470M. Ford. He's too big to go in there: what shall I do?
Fal. Let me see't, let me see't, O let me see't:
Ile in, Ile in: Follow your friends counsell, Ile in.
M. Page. What Sir Iohn Falstaffe? Are these your Let-
ters, Knight?
1475Fal. I loue thee, helpe mee away: let me creepe in
heere: ile neuer ---
M. Page. Helpe to couer your master (Boy:) Call
your men (Mist. Ford.) You dissembling Knight.
M. Ford. What Iohn, Robert, Iohn; Go, take vp these
1480cloathes heere, quickly: Wher's the Cowle-staffe? Look
how you drumble? Carry them to the Landresse in Dat-
chet mead: quickly, come.
Ford. 'Pray you come nere: if I suspect without cause,
Why then make sport at me, then let me be your iest,
1485I deserue it: How now? Whether beare you this?
Ser. To the Landresse forsooth?
M. Ford. Why, what haue you to doe whether they
beare it? You were best meddle with buck-washing.
Ford. Buck? I would I could wash my selfe of ye Buck:
1490Bucke, bucke, bucke, I bucke: I warrant you Bucke,
And of the season too; it shall appeare.
Gentlemen, I haue dream'd to night, Ile tell you my
dreame: heere, heere, heere bee my keyes, ascend my
Chambers, search, seeke, finde out: Ile warrant wee'le
1495vnkennell the Fox. Let me stop this way first: so, now
vncape.
Page. Good master Ford, be contented:
You wrong your selfe too much.
Ford. True (master Page) vp Gentlemen,
1500You shall see sport anon:
Follow me Gentlemen.
Euans. This is fery fantasticall humors and iealousies.
Caius. By gar, 'tis no-the fashion of France:
It is not iealous in France.
1505Page. Nay follow him (Gentlemen) see the yssue of
his search.
Mist Page. Is there not a double excellency in this?
Mist. Ford. I know not which pleases me better,
That my husband is deceiued, or Sir Iohn.
1510Mist. Page. What a taking was hee in, when your
husband askt who was in the basket?
Mist. Ford. I am halfe affraid he will haue neede of
washing: so throwing him into the water, will doe him
a benefit.
1515Mist. Page. Hang him dishonest rascall: I would all
of the same straine, were in the same distresse.
Mist. Ford. I thinke my husband hath some speciall
suspition of Falstaffs being heere: for I neuer saw him so
grosse in his iealousie till now.
1520Mist. Page. I will lay a plot to try that, and wee will
yet haue more trickes with Falstaffe: his dissolute disease
will scarse obey this medicine.
Mis. Ford. Shall we send that foolishion Carion, Mist.
Quickly to him, and excuse his throwing into the water,
1525and giue him another hope, to betray him to another
punishment?
Mist. Page. We will do it: let him be sent for to mor-
row eight a clocke to haue amends.
Ford. I cannot finde him: may be the knaue bragg'd
1530of that he could not compasse.
Mis. Page. Heard you that?
Mis. Ford. You vse me well, M. Ford? Do you?
Ford. I, I do so.
M. Ford. Heauen make you better then your thoghts
1535Ford. Amen.
Mi. Page. You do your selfe mighty wrong (M. Ford)
Ford. I, I: I must beare it.
Eu. If there be any pody in the house, & in the cham-
bers, and in the coffers, and in the presses: heauen for-
1540giue my sins at the day of iudgement.
Caius. Be gar, nor I too: there is no-bodies.
Page. Fy, fy, M. Ford, are you not asham'd? What spi-
rit, what diuell suggests this imagination? I wold not ha
your distemper in this kind, for ye welth of Windsor castle.
1545Ford. 'Tis my fault (M. Page) I suffer for it.
Euans. You suffer for a pad conscience: your wife is
as honest a o'mans, as I will desires among fiue thou-
sand, and fiue hundred too.
Cai. By gar, I see 'tis an honest woman.
1550Ford. Well, I promisd you a dinner: come, come, walk
in the Parke, I pray you pardon me: I wil hereafter make
knowne to you why I haue done this. Come wife, come
Mi. Page, I pray you pardon me. Pray hartly pardon me.
Page. Let's go in Gentlemen, but (trust me) we'l mock
1555him: I doe inuite you to morrow morning to my house
to breakfast: after we'll a Birding together, I haue a fine
Hawke for the bush. Shall it be so:
Ford. Any thing.
Eu. If there is one, I shall make two in the Companie
1560Ca. If there be one, or two, I shall make-a-theturd.
Ford. Pray you go, M. Page.
Eua. I pray you now remembrance to morrow on the
lowsie knaue, mine Host.
Cai. Dat is good by gar, withall my heart.
1565Eua. A lowsie knaue, to haue his gibes, and his moc-
keries.
Exeunt.
Scoena Quarta.
Enter Fenton, Anne, Page, Shallow, Slender,
Quickly, Page, Mist. Page.
1570Fen: I see I cannot get thy Fathers loue,
Therefore no more turne me to him (sweet Nan.)
Anne. Alas, how then?
Fen. Why thou must be thy selfe.
He doth obiect, I am too great of birth,
1575And that my state being gall'd with my expence,
I seeke to heale it onely by his wealth.
Besides these, other barres he layes before me,
My Riots past, my wilde Societies,
And tels me 'tis a thing impossible
1580I should loue thee, but as a property.
An. May be he tels you true.
No, heauen so speed me in my time to come,
Albeit I will confesse, thy Fathers wealth
Was the first motiue that I woo'd thee (Anne:)
1585Yet wooing thee, I found thee of more valew
Then stampes in Gold, or summes in sealed bagges:
And 'tis the very riches of thy selfe,
That now I ayme at.
An. Gentle M. Fenton,
1590Yet seeke my Fathers loue, still seeke it sir,
If opportunity and humblest suite
Cannot attaine it, why then harke you hither.
Shal. Breake their talke Mistris Quickly,
My Kinsman shall speake for himselfe.
1595Slen. Ile make a shaft or a bolt on't, slid, tis but ventu-
Shal. Be not dismaid.
Slen. No, she shall not dismay me:
I care not for that, but that I am affeard.
Qui. Hark ye, M. Slender would speak a word with you
1600An. I come to him. This is my Fathers choice:
O what a world of vilde ill-fauour'd faults
Lookes handsome in three hundred pounds a yeere?
Qui. And how do's good Master Fenton?
Pray you a word with you.
1605Shal. Shee's comming; to her Coz:
O boy, thou hadst a father.
Slen. I had a father (M. An) my vncle can tel you good
iests of him: pray you Vncle, tel Mist. Anne the iest how
my Father stole two Geese out of a Pen, good Vnckle.
1610Shal. Mistris Anne, my Cozen loues you.
Slen. I that I do, as well as I loue any woman in Glo-
cestershire.
Shal. He will maintaine you like a Gentlewoman.
Slen. I that I will, come cut and long-taile, vnder the
1615degree of a Squire.
Shal. He will make you a hundred and fiftie pounds
ioynture.
Anne. Good Maister Shallow let him woo for him-
selfe.
1620Shal. Marrie I thanke you for it: I thanke you for
that good comfort: she cals you (Coz) Ile leaue you.
Anne. Now Master Slender.
Slen. Now good Mistris Anne.
Anne. What is your will?
1625Slen. My will? Odd's-hart-lings, that's a prettie
iest indeede: I ne're made my Will yet (I thanke Hea-
uen:) I am not such a sickely creature, I giue Heauen
praise.
Anne. I meane (M. Slender) what wold you with me?
1630Slen. Truely, for mine owne part, I would little or
nothing with you: your father and my vncle hath made
motions: if it be my lucke, so; if not, happy man bee his
dole, they can tell you how things go, better then I can:
you may aske your father, heere he comes.
1635Page. Now Mr Slender; Loue him daughter Anne.
Why how now? What does Mr Fenter here?
You wrong me Sir, thus still to haunt my house.
I told you Sir, my daughter is disposd of.
Fen. Nay Mr Page, be not impatient.
1640Mist. Page. Good M. Fenton. come not to my child.
Page. She is no match for you.
Fen. Sir, will you heare me?
Page. No, good M. Fenton.
Come M. Shallow: Come sonne Slender, in;
1645Knowing my minde, you wrong me (M. Fenton.)
Qui. Speake to Mistris Page.
Fen. Good Mist. Page, for that I loue your daughter
In such a righteous fashion as I do,
Perforce, against all checkes, rebukes, and manners,
1650I must aduance the colours of my loue,
And not retire. Let me haue your good will.
An. Good mother, do not marry me to yond foole.
Mist. Page. I meane it not, I seeke you a better hus-
band.
1655Qui. That's my master, M. Doctor.
An. Alas I had rather be set quick i'th earth,
And bowl'd to death with Turnips.
Mist. Page. Come, trouble not your selfe good M.
Fenton, I will not be your friend, nor enemy:
1660My daughter will I question how she loues you,
And as I finde her, so am I affected:
Till then, farewell Sir, she must needs go in,
Her father will be angry.
Fen. Farewell gentle Mistris: farewell Nan.
1665Qui. This is my doing now: Nay, saide I, will you
cast away your childe on a Foole, and a Physitian:
Looke on M. Fenton, this is my doing.
Fen. I thanke thee: and I pray thee once to night,
Giue my sweet Nan this Ring: there's for thy paines.
1670Qui. Now heauen send thee good fortune, a kinde
heart he hath: a woman would run through fire & wa-
ter for such a kinde heart. But yet, I would my Maister
had Mistris Anne, or I would M. Slender had her: or (in
sooth) I would M. Fenton had her; I will do what I can
1675for them all three, for so I haue promisd, and Ile bee as
good as my word, but speciously for M. Fenton. Well, I
must of another errand to Sir Iohn Falstaffe from my two
Mistresses: what a beast am I to slacke it.
Exeunt
Scena Quinta.
1680
Enter Falstaffe, Bardolfe, Quickly, Ford.
Fal. Bardolfe I say.
Bar. Heere Sir.
Fal. Go, fetch me a quart of Sacke, put a tost in't.
Haue I liu'd to be carried in a Basket like a barrow of
1685butchers Offall? and to be throwne in the Thames? Wel,
if I be seru'd such another tricke, Ile haue my braines
'tane out and butter'd, and giue them to a dogge for a
New-yeares gift. The rogues slighted me into the riuer
with as little remorse, as they would haue drown'de a
1690blinde bitches Puppies, fifteene i'th litter: and you may
know by my size, that I haue a kinde of alacrity in sink-
ing: if the bottome were as deepe as hell, I shold down.
I had beene drown'd, but that the shore was sheluy and
shallow: a death that I abhorre: for the water swelles a
1695man; and what a thing should I haue beene, when I
had beene swel'd? I should haue beene a Mountaine of
Mummie.
Bar. Here's M. Quickly Sir to speake with you.
Fal. Come, let me poure in some Sack to the Thames
1700water: for my bellies as cold as if I had swallow'd snow-
bals, for pilles to coole the reines. Call her in.
Bar. Come in woman.
Qui. By your leaue: I cry you mercy?
Giue your worship good morrow.
1705Fal. Take away these Challices:
Go, brew me a pottle of Sacke finely.
Bard. With Egges, Sir?
Fal. Simple of it selfe: Ile no Pullet-Spersme in my
brewage. How now?
1710Qui. Marry Sir, I come to your worship from M. Ford.
Fal. Mist. Ford? I haue had Ford enough: I was thrown
into the Ford; I haue my belly full of Ford.
Qui. Alas the day, (good-heart) that was not her
fault: she do's so take on with her men; they mistooke
1715their erection.
Fal. So did I mine, to build vpon a foolish Womans
Qui. Well, she laments Sir for it, that it would yern
your heart to see it: her husband goes this morning a
birding; she desires you once more to come to her, be-
1720tweene eight and nine: I must carry her word quickely,
she'll make you amends I warrant you.
Fal. Well, I will visit her, tell her so: and bidde her
thinke what a man is: Let her consider his frailety, and
then iudge of my merit.
1725Qui. I will tell her.
Fal. Do so. Betweene nine and ten saist thou?
Qui. Eight and nine Sir.
Fal. Well, be gone: I will not misse her.
Qui. Peace be with you Sir.
1730Fal. I meruaile I heare not of Mr Broome: he sent me
word to stay within: I like his money well.
Oh, heere be comes.
Ford. Blesse you Sir.
Fal. Now M. Broome, you come to know
1735What hath past betweene me, and Fords wife.
Ford. That indeed (Sir Iohn) is my businesse.
Fal. M. Broome I will not lye to you,
I was at her house the houre she appointed me.
Ford. And sped you Sir?
1740Fal. very ill-fauouredly M. Broome.
Ford. How so sir, did she change her determination?
Fal. No (M. Broome) but the peaking Curnuto her hus-
band (M. Broome) dwelling in a continual larum of ielou-
sie, coms me in the instant of our encounter, after we had
1745embrast, kist, protested, & (as it were) spoke the prologue
of our Comedy: and at his heeles, a rabble of his compa-
nions, thither prouoked and instigated by his distemper,
and (forsooth) to serch his house for his wiues Loue.
Ford. What? While you were there?
1750Fal. While I was there.
For. And did he search for you, & could not find you?
Fal. You shall heare. As good lucke would haue it,
comes in one Mist. Page, giues intelligence of Fords ap-
proch: and in her inuention, and Fords wiues distraction,
1755they conuey'd me into a bucke-basket.
Ford. A Buck-basket?
Fal. Yes: a Buck-basket: ram'd mee in with foule
Shirts and Smockes, Socks, foule Stockings, greasie
Napkins, that (Master Broome) there was the rankest
1760compound of villanous smell, that euer offended no-
strill.
Ford. And how long lay you there?
Fal. Nay, you shall heare (Master Broome) what I
haue sufferd, to bring this woman to euill, for your
1765good: Being thus cram'd in the Basket, a couple of
Fords knaues, his Hindes, were cald forth by their Mi-
stris, to carry mee in the name of foule Cloathes to
Datchet-lane: they tooke me on their shoulders: met
the iealous knaue their Master in the doore; who
1770ask'd them once or twice what they had in their Bas-
ket? I quak'd for feare least the Lunatique Knaue
would haue search'd it: but Fate (ordaining he should
be a Cuckold) held his hand: well, on went hee, for
a search, and away went I for foule Cloathes: But
1775marke the sequell (Master Broome) I suffered the pangs
of three seuerall deaths: First, an intollerable fright,
to be detected with a iealious rotten Bell-weather:
Next to be compass'd like a good Bilbo in the circum-
ference of a Pecke, hilt to point, heele to head. And
1780then to be stopt in like a strong distillation with stink-
ing Cloathes, that fretted in their owne grease:
thinke of that, a man of my Kidney; thinke of that,
that am as subiect to heate as butter; a man of conti-
nuall dissolution, and thaw: it was a miracle to scape
1785suffocation. And in the height of this Bath (when I
was more then halfe stew'd in grease (like a Dutch-
dish) to be throwne into the Thames, and
coold, glowing-hot, in that serge like a Horse-
shoo; thinke of that; hissing hot: thinke of that (Master
1790Broome.)
Ford. In good sadnesse Sir, I am sorry, that for my sake
you haue sufferd all this.
My suite then is desperate: You'll vndertake her no
more?
1795Fal. Master Broome: I will be throwne into Etna,
as I haue beene into Thames, ere I will leaue her thus;
her Husband is this morning gone a Birding: I
haue receiued from her another ambassie of mee-
ting: 'twixt eight and nine is the houre (Master
1800Broome.)
Ford. 'Tis past eight already Sir.
Fal. Is it? I will then addresse mee to my appoint-
ment: Come to mee at your conuenient leisure, and
you shall know how I speede: and the conclusion
1805shall be crowned with your enioying her: adiew: you
shall haue her (Master Broome) Master Broome, you shall
cuckold Ford.
Ford. Hum: ha? Is this a vision? Is this a dreame?
doe I sleepe? Master Ford awake, awake Master Ford:
1810ther's a hole made in your best coate (Master Ford:) this
'tis to be married; this 'tis to haue Lynnen, and Buck-
baskets: Well, I will proclaime my selfe what I am:
I will now take the Leacher: hee is at my house: hee
cannot scape me: 'tis impossible hee should: hee can-
1815not creepe into a halfe-penny purse, nor into a Pepper-
Boxe: But least the Diuell that guides him, should
aide him, I will search impossible places: though
what I am, I cannot auoide; yet to be what I would
not, shall not make me tame: If I haue hornes, to make
1820one mad, let the prouerbe goe with me, Ile be horne-
mad.
Exeunt.
Actus Quartus. Scoena Prima.
Enter Mistris Page, Quickly, William, Euans.
Mist. Pag. Is he at M. Fords already think'st thou?
1825Qui. Sure he is by this; or will be presently; but
truely he is very couragious mad, about his throwing
into the water. Mistris Ford desires you to come so-
dainely.
Mist. Pag. Ile be with her by and by: Ile but bring
1830my yong-man here to Schoole: looke where his Master
comes; 'tis a playing day I see: how now Sir Hugh, no
Schoole to day?
Eua. No: Master Slender is let the Boyes leaue to play.
Qui 'Blessing of his heart.
1835Mist. Pag. Sir Hugh, my husband saies my sonne pro-
fits nothing in the world at his Booke: I pray you aske
him some questions in his Accidence.
Eu. Come hither William; hold vp your head; come.
Mist. Pag. Come-on Sirha; hold vp your head; an-
1840swere your Master, be not afraid.
Eua. William, how many Numbers is in Nownes?
Will. Two.
Qui. Truely, I thought there had bin one Number
more, because they say od's-Nownes.
1845Eua. Peace, your tatlings. What is (Faire) William?
Will. Pulcher.
Qu. Powlcats? there are fairer things then Powlcats,
sure.
Eua. You are a very simplicity o'man: I pray you
1850peace. What is (Lapis) William?
Will. A Stone.
Eua. And what is a Stone (William?)
Will. A Peeble.
Eua. No; it is Lapis: I pray you remember in your
1855praine.
Will. Lapis.
Eua. That is a good William: what is he (William) that
do's lend Articles.
Will. Articles are borrowed of the Pronoune; and be
1860thus declined. Singulariter nominatiuo hic hæc, hoc.
Eua. Nominatiuo hig, hag, hog: pray you marke: geni-
tiuo huius: Well: what is your Accusatiue-case?
Will. Accusatiuo hinc.
Eua. I pray you haue your remembrance (childe) Ac-
1865cusatiuo hing, hang, hog.
Qu. Hang-hog, is latten for Bacon, I warrant you.
Eua. Leaue your prables (o'man) What is the Foca-
tiue case (William?)
Will. O, Vocatiuo, O.
1870Eua. Remember William, Focatiue, is caret.
Qu. And that's a good roote.
Eua. O'man, forbeare.
Mist. Pag. Peace.
Eua. What is your Genitiue case plurall (William?)
1875Will. Genitiue case?
Eua. I.
Will. Genitiue horum, harum, horum.
Qu. 'Vengeance of Ginyes case; fie on her; neuer
name her (childe) if she be a whore.
1880Eua. For shame o'man.
Qu. You doe ill to teach the childe such words: hee
teaches him to hic, and to hac; which they'll doe fast
enough of themselues, and to call horum; fie vpon you.
Euans. O'man, art thou Lunaties? Hast thou no vn-
1885derstandings for thy Cases, & the numbers of the Gen-
ders? Thou art as foolish Christian creatures, as I would
desires.
Mi. Page. Pre'thee hold thy peace.
Eu. Shew me now (William) some declensions of your
1890Pronounes.
Will. Forsooth, I haue forgot.
Eu. It is Qui, que, quod; if you forget your Quies,
your Ques, and your Quods, you must be preeches: Goe
your waies and play, go.
1895M. Pag. He is a better scholler then I thought he was.
Eu. He is a good sprag-memory: Farewel Mis. Page.
Mis. Page. Adieu good Sir Hugh:
Get you home boy, Come we stay too long.
Exeunt.
Scena Secunda.
1900
Enter Falstoffe, Mist. Ford, Mist. Page, Seruants, Ford,
Page, Caius, Euans, Shallow.
Fal. Mi. Ford, Your sorrow hath eaten vp my suffe-
rance; I see you are obsequious in your loue, and I pro-
fesse requitall to a haires bredth, not onely Mist. Ford,
1905in the simple office of loue, but in all the accustrement,
complement, and ceremony of it: But are you sure of
your husband now?
Mis. Ford. Hee's a birding (sweet Sir Iohn.)
Mis. Page. What hoa, gossip Ford: what hoa.
1910Mis. Ford. Step into th'chamber, Sir Iohn.
Mis. Page. How now (sweete heart) whose at home
besides your selfe?
Mis Ford. Why none but mine owne people.
Mis. Page. Indeed?
1915Mis. Ford. No certainly: Speake louder.
Mist. Pag. Truly, I am so glad you haue no body here.
Mist. Ford. Why?
Mis. Page. Why woman, your husband is in his olde
lines againe: he so takes on yonder with my husband, so
1920railes against all married mankinde; so curses all Eues
daughters, of what complexion soeuer; and so buffettes
himselfe on the for-head: crying peere-out, peere-out,
that any madnesse I euer yet beheld, seem'd but tame-
nesse, ciuility, and patience to this his distemper he is in
1925now: I am glad the fat Knight is not heere.
Mist. Ford. Why, do's he talke of him?
Mist. Page. Of none but him, and sweares he was ca-
ried out the last time hee search'd for him, in a Basket:
Protests to my husband he is now heere, & hath drawne
1930him and the rest of their company from their sport, to
make another experiment of his suspition: But I am glad
the Knight is not heere; now he shall see his owne foo-
lerie.
Mist. Ford. How neere is he Mistris Page?
1935Mist. Pag. Hard by, at street end; he wil be here anon.
Mist. Ford. I am vndone, the Knight is heere.
Mist. Page. Why then you are vtterly sham'd, & hee's
but a dead man. What a woman are you? Away with
him, away with him: Better shame, then murther.
1940Mist. Ford. Which way should he go? How should I
bestow him? Shall I put him into the basket againe?
Fal. No, Ile come no more i'th Basket:
May I not go out ere he come?
Mist. Page. Alas: three of Mr. Fords brothers watch
1945the doore with Pistols, that none shall issue out: other-
wise you might slip away ere hee came: But what make
you heere?
Fal. What shall I do? Ile creepe vp into the chimney.
Mist. Ford. There they alwaies vse to discharge their
1950Birding-peeces: creepe into the Kill-hole.
Fal. Where is it?
Mist. Ford. He will seeke there on my word: Neyther
Presse, Coffer, Chest, Trunke, Well, Vault, but he hath
an abstract for the remembrance of such places, and goes
1955to them by his Note: There is no hiding you in the
house.
Fal. Ile go out then.
Mist. Ford. If you goe out in your owne semblance,
you die Sir Iohn, vnlesse you go out disguis'd.
1960Mist. Ford. How might we disguise him?
Mist. Page. Alas the day I know not, there is no wo-
mans gowne bigge enough for him: otherwise he might
put on a hat, a muffler, and a kerchiefe, and so escape.
Fal. Good hearts, deuise something: any extremitie,
1965rather then a mischiefe.
Mist. Ford. My Maids Aunt the fat woman of Brain-
ford, has a gowne aboue.
Mist. Page. On my word it will serue him: shee's as
big as he is: and there's her thrum'd hat, and her muffler
1970too: run vp Sir Iohn.
Mist. Ford. Go, go, sweet Sir Iohn: Mistris Page and
I will looke some linnen for your head.
Mist. Page. Quicke, quicke, wee'le come dresse you
straight: put on the gowne the while.
1975Mist. Ford. I would my husband would meete him
in this shape: he cannot abide the old woman of Brain-
ford; he sweares she's a witch, forbad her my house, and
hath threatned to beate her.
Mist. Page. Heauen guide him to thy husbands cud-
1980gell: and the diuell guide his cudgell afterwards.
Mist. Ford. But is my husband comming?
Mist. Page. I in good sadnesse is he, and talkes of the
basket too, howsoeuer he hath had intelligence.
Mist. Ford. Wee'l try that: for Ile appoint my men to
1985carry the basket againe, to meete him at the doore with
it, as they did last time.
Mist. Page. Nay, but hee'l be heere presently: let's go
dresse him like the witch of Brainford.
Mist. Ford. Ile first direct my men, what they
1990shall doe with the basket: Goe vp, Ile bring linnen for
him straight.
Mist. Page. Hang him dishonest Varlet,
We cannot misuse enough:
We'll leaue a proofe by that which we will doo,
1995Wiues may be merry, and yet honest too:
We do not acte that often, iest, and laugh,
'Tis old, but true, Still Swine eats all the draugh.
Mist. Ford. Go Sirs, take the basket againe on your
shoulders: your Master is hard at doore: if hee bid you
2000set it downe, obey him: quickly, dispatch.
1 Ser. Come, come, take it vp.
2 Ser. Pray heauen it be not full of Knight againe.
1 Ser. I hope not, I had liefe as beare so much lead.
Ford. I, but if it proue true (Mr. Page) haue you any
2005way then to vnfoole me againe. Set downe the basket
villaine: some body call my wife: Youth in a basket:
Oh you Panderly Rascals, there's a knot: a gin, a packe,
a conspiracie against me: Now shall the diuel be sham'd.
What wife I say: Come, come forth: behold what ho-
2010nest cloathes you send forth to bleaching.
Page. Why, this passes M. Ford: you are not to goe
loose any longer, you must be pinnion'd.
Euans. Why, this is Lunaticks: this is madde, as a
mad dogge.
2015Shall. Indeed M. Ford, thi is not well indeed.
Ford. So say I too Sir, come hither Mistris Ford, Mi-
stris Ford, the honest woman, the modest wife, the vertu-
ous creature, that hath the iealious foole to her husband:
I suspect without cause (Mistris) do I?
2020Mist. Ford. Heauen be my witnesse you doe, if you
suspect me in any dishonesty.
Ford. Well said Brazon-face, hold it out: Come forth
sirrah.
Page. This passes.
2025Mist. Ford. Are you not asham'd, let the cloths alone.
Ford. I shall finde you anon.
Eua. 'Tis vnreasonable; will you take vp your wiues
cloathes? Come, away.
Ford. Empty the basket I say.
2030M. Ford. Why man, why?
Ford. Master Page, as I am a man, there was one con-
uay'd out of my house yesterday in this basket: why
may not he be there againe, in my house I am sure he is:
my Intelligence is true, my iealousie is reasonable, pluck
2035me out all the linnen.
Mist. Ford. If you find a man there, he shall dye a Fleas
death.
Page. Heer's no man.
Shal. By my fidelity this is not well Mr. Ford: This
2040wrongs you.
Euans. Mr Ford, you must pray, and not follow the
imaginations of your owne heart: this is iealousies.
Ford. Well, hee's not heere I seeke for.
Page. No, nor no where else but in your braine.
2045Ford. Helpe to search my house this one time: if I find
not what I seeke, shew no colour for my extremity: Let
me for euer be your Table-sport: Let them say of me, as
iealous as Ford, that search'd a hollow Wall-nut for his
wiues Lemman. Satisfie me once more, once more serch
2050with me.
M. Ford. What hoa (Mistris Page,) come you and
the old woman downe: my husband will come into the
Chamber.
Ford. Old woman? what old womans that?
2055M. Ford. Why it is my maids Aunt of Brainford.
Ford. A witch, a Queane, an olde couzening queane:
Haue I not forbid her my house. She comes of errands
do's she? We are simple men, wee doe not know what's
brought to passe vnder the profession of Fortune-telling.
2060She workes by Charmes, by Spels, by th'Figure, & such
dawbry as this is, beyond our Element: wee know no-
thing. Come downe you Witch, you Hagge you, come
downe I say.
Mist. Ford. Nay, good sweet husband, good Gentle-
2065men, let him strike the old woman.
Mist. Page. Come mother Prat, Come giue me your
hand.
Ford. Ile Prat-her: Out of my doore, you Witch,
you Ragge, you Baggage, you Poulcat, you Runnion,
2070out, out: Ile coniure you, Ile fortune-tell you.
Mist. Page. Are you not asham'd?
I thinke you haue kill'd the poore woman.
Mist. Ford. Nay he will do it, 'tis a goodly credite
for you.
2075Ford. Hang her witch.
Eua. By yea, and no, I thinke the o'man is a witch in-
deede: I like not when a o'man has a great peard; I spie
a great peard vnder his muffler.
Ford. Will you follow Gentlemen, I beseech you fol-
2080low: see but the issue of my iealousie: If I cry out thus
vpon no traile, neuer trust me when I open againe.
Page. Let's obey his humour a little further:
Come Gentlemen.
Mist. Page. Trust me he beate him most pittifully.
2085Mist. Ford. Nay by th'Masse that he did not: he beate
him most vnpittifully, me thought.
Mist. Page. Ile haue the cudgell hallow'd, and hung
ore the Altar, it hath done meritorious seruice.
Mist. Ford. What thinke you? May we with the war-
2090rant of woman-hood, and the witnesse of a good consci-
ence, pursue him with any further reuenge?
M. Page. The spirit of wantonnesse is sure scar'd out
of him, if the diuell haue him not in fee-simple, with
fine and recouery, he will neuer (I thinke) in the way of
2095waste, attempt vs againe.
Mist. Ford. Shall we tell our husbands how wee haue
seru'd him?
Mist. Page. Yes, by all meanes: if it be but to scrape
the figures out of your husbands braines: if they can find
2100in their hearts, the poore vnuertuous fat Knight shall be
any further afflicted, wee two will still bee the mini-
sters.
Mist. Ford. Ile warrant, they'l haue him publiquely
sham'd, and me thinkes there would be no period to the
2105iest, should he not be publikely sham'd.
Mist. Page. Come, to the Forge with it, then shape it:
I would not haue things coole.
Exeunt
Scena Tertia.
Enter Host and Bardolfe.
2110Bar. Sir, the Germane desires to haue three of your
horses: the Duke himselfe will be to morrow at Court,
and they are going to meet him.
Host. What Duke should that be comes so secretly?
I heare not of him in the Court: let mee speake with the
2115Gentlemen, they speake English?
Bar. I Sir? Ile call him to you.
Host. They shall haue my horses, but Ile make them
pay: Ile sauce them, they haue had my houses a week at
commaund: I haue turn'd away my other guests, they
2120must come off, Ile sawce them, come.
Exeunt
Scena Quarta.
Enter Page, Ford, Mistris Page, Mistris
Ford, and Euans.
Eua. 'Tis one of the best discretions of a o'man as e-
2125uer I did looke vpon.
Page. And did he send you both these Letters at an
instant?
Mist. Page. VVithin a quarter of an houre.
Ford. Pardon me (wife) henceforth do what yu wilt:
2130I rather will suspect the Sunne with gold,
Then thee with wantonnes: Now doth thy honor stand
(In him that was of late an Heretike)
As firme as faith.
Page. 'Tis well, 'tis well, no more:
2135Be not as extreme in submission, as in offence,
But let our plot go forward: Let our wiues
Yet once againe (to make vs publike sport)
Appoint a meeting with this old fat-fellow,
Where we may take him, and disgrace him for it.
2140Ford. There is no better way then that they spoke of.
Page. How? to send him word they'll meete him in
the Parke at midnight? Fie, fie, he'll neuer come.
Eu. You say he has bin throwne in the Riuers: and
has bin greeuously peaten, as an old o'man: me-thinkes
2145there should be terrors in him, that he should not come:
Me-thinkes his flesh is punish'd, hee shall haue no de-
sires.
Page. So thinke I too.
M. Ford. Deuise but how you'l vse him whē he comes,
2150And let vs two deuise to bring him thether.
Mis. Page. There is an old tale goes, that Herne the
Hunter (sometime a keeper heere in Windsor Forrest)
Doth all the winter time, at still midnight
Walke round about an Oake, with great rag'd-hornes,
2155And there he blasts the tree, and takes the cattle,
And make milch-kine yeeld blood, and shakes a chaine
In a most hideous and dreadfull manner.
You haue heard of such a Spirit, and well you know
The superstitious idle-headed-Eld
2160Receiu'd, and did deliuer to our age
This tale of Herne the Hunter, for a truth.
Page. Why yet there want not many that do feare
In deepe of night to walke by this Hernes Oake:
But what of this?
2165Mist. Ford. Marry this is our deuise,
That Falstaffe at that Oake shall meete with vs.
Page. Well, let it not be doubted but he'll come,
And in this shape, when you haue brought him thether,
What shall be done with him? What is your plot?
2170Mist.Pa. That likewise haue we thoght vpon: & thus:
Nan Page (my daughter) and my little sonne,
And three or foure more of their growth, wee'l dresse
Like Vrchins, Ouphes, and Fairies, greene and white,
With rounds of waxen Tapers on their heads,
2175And rattles in their hands; vpon a sodaine,
As Falstaffe, she, and I, are newly met,
Let them from forth a saw-pit rush at once
With some diffused song: Vpon their sight
We two, in great amazednesse will flye:
2180Then let them all encircle him about,
And Fairy-like to pinch the vncleane Knight;
And aske him why that houre of Fairy Reuell,
In their so sacred pathes, he dares to tread
In shape prophane.
2185Ford. And till he tell the truth,
Let the supposed Fairies pinch him, sound,
And burne him with their Tapers.
Mist. Page. The truth being knowne,
We'll all present our selues; dis-horne the spirit,
2190And mocke him home to Windsor.
Ford. The children must
Be practis'd well to this, or they'll neu'r doo't.
Eua. I will teach the children their behauiours: and I
will be like a Iacke-an-Apes also, to burne the Knight
2195with my Taber.
Ford. That will be excellent,
Ile go buy them vizards.
Mist. Page. My Nan shall be the Queene of all the
Fairies, finely attired in a robe of white.
2200Page. That silke will I go buy, and in that time
Shall M. Slender steale my Nan away,
And marry her at Eaton: go, send to Falstaffe straight.
Ford. Nay, Ile to him againe in name of Broome,
Hee'l tell me all his purpose: sure hee'l come.
2205Mist. Page. Feare not you that: Go get vs properties
And tricking for our Fayries.
Euans. Let vs about it,
It is admirable pleasures, and ferry honest knaueries.
Mis. Page. Go Mist. Ford,
2210Send quickly to Sir Iohn, to know his minde:
Ile to the Doctor, he hath my good will,
And none but he to marry with Nan Page:
That Slender (though well landed) is an Ideot:
And he, my husband best of all affects:
2215The Doctor is well monied, and his friends
Potent at Court: he, none but he shall haue her,
Though twenty thousand worthier come to craue her.
Scena Quinta.
Enter Host, Simple, Falstaffe, Bardolfe, Euans,
2220Caius, Quickly.
Host. What wouldst thou haue? (Boore) what? (thick
skin) speake, breathe, discusse: breefe, short, quicke,
snap.
Simp. Marry Sir, I come to speake with Sir Iohn Fal-
2225staffe from M. Slender.
Host. There's his Chamber, his House, his Castle,
his standing-bed and truckle-bed: 'tis painted about
with the story of the Prodigall, fresh and new: go, knock
and call: hee'l speake like an Anthropophaginian vnto
2230thee: Knocke I say.
Simp. There's an olde woman, a fat woman gone vp
into his chamber: Ile be so bold as stay Sir till she come
downe: I come to speake with her indeed.
Host. Ha? A fat woman? The Knight may be robb'd:
2235Ile call. Bully-Knight, Bully Sir Iohn: speake from thy
Lungs Military: Art thou there? It is thine Host, thine
Ephesian cals.
Fal. How now, mine Host?
Host. Here's a Bohemian-Tartar taries the comming
2240downe of thy fat-woman: Let her descend (Bully) let
her descend: my Chambers are honourable: Fie, priua-
cy? Fie.
Fal. There was (mine Host) an old-fat-woman euen
now with me, but she's gone.
2245Simp. Pray you Sir, was't not the Wise-woman of
Brainford?
Fal. I marry was it (Mussel-shell) what would you
with her?
Simp. My Master (Sir) my master Slender, sent to her
2250seeing her go thorough the streets, to know (Sir) whe-
ther one Nim (Sir) that beguil'd him of a chaine, had the
chaine, or no.
Fal. I spake with the old woman about it.
Sim. And what sayes she, I pray Sir?
2255Fal. Marry shee sayes, that the very same man that
beguil'd Master Slender of his Chaine, cozon'd him of it.
Simp. I would I could haue spoken with the Woman
her selfe, I had other things to haue spoken with her
too, from him.
2260Fal. What are they? let vs know.
Host. I: come: quicke.
Fal. I may not conceale them (Sir.)
Host. Conceale them, or thou di'st.
Sim. Why sir, they were nothing but about Mistris
2265Anne Page, to know if it were my Masters fortune to
haue her, or no.
Fal. 'Tis, 'tis his fortune.
Sim. What Sir?
Fal. To haue her, or no: goe; say the woman told
2270me so.
Sim. May I be bold to say so Sir?
Fal. I Sir: like who more bold.
Sim. I thanke your worship: I shall make my Master
glad with these tydings.
2275Host. Thou are clearkly: thou art clearkly (Sir Iohn)
was there a wise woman with thee?
Fal. I that there was (mine Host) one that hath taught
me more wit, then euer I learn'd before in my life: and
I paid nothing for it neither, but was paid for my lear-
2280ning.
Bar. Out alas (Sir) cozonage: meere cozonage.
Host. Where be my horses? speake well of them var-
letto.
Bar. Run away with the cozoners: for so soone as
2285I came beyond Eaton, they threw me off, from behinde
one of them, in a slough of myre; and set spurres, and
away; like three Germane-diuels; three Doctor Fau-
stasses.
Host. They are gone but to meete the Duke (villaine)
2290doe not say they be fled: Germanes are honest men.
Euan. Where is mine Host?
Host. What is the matter Sir?
Euan. Haue a care of your entertainments: there is a
friend of mine come to Towne, tels mee there is three
2295Cozen-Iermans, that has cozend all the Hosts of Readins,
of Maidenhead; of Cole-brooke, of horses and money: I
tell you for good will (looke you) you are wise, and full
of gibes, and vlouting-stocks: and 'tis not conuenient
you should be cozoned. Fare you well.
2300Cai. Ver' is mine Host de Iarteere?
Host. Here (Master Doctor) in perplexitie, and doubt-
full delemma.
Cai. I cannot tell vat is dat: but it is tell-a-me, dat
you make grand preparation for a Duke de Iamanie: by
2305my trot: der is no Duke that the Court is know, to
come: I tell you for good will: adieu.
Host. Huy and cry, (villaine) goe: assist me Knight, I
am vndone: fly, run: huy, and cry (villaine) I am vn-
done.
2310Fal. I would all the world might be cozond, for I
haue beene cozond and beaten too: if it should come
to the eare of the Court, how I haue beene transformed;
and how my transformation hath beene washd, and
cudgeld, they would melt mee out of my fat drop by
2315drop, and liquor Fishermens-boots with me: I warrant
they would whip me with their fine wits, till I were as
crest-falne as a dride-peare: I neuer prosper'd, since I
forswore my selfe at Primero: well, if my winde were
but long enough; I would repent: Now? Whence come
2320you?
Qui. From the two parties forsooth.
Fal. The Diuell take one partie, and his Dam the
other: and so they shall be both bestowed; I haue suf-
fer'd more for their sakes; more then the villanous in-
2325constancy of mans disposition is able to beare.
Qui. And haue not they suffer'd? Yes, I warrant; spe-
ciously one of them; Mistris Ford (good heart) is beaten
blacke and blew, that you cannot see a white spot about
her.
2330Fal. What tell'st thou mee of blacke, and blew? I
was beaten my selfe into all the colours of the Raine-
bow: and I was like to be apprehended for the Witch
of Braineford, but that my admirable dexteritie of wit,
my counterfeiting the action of an old woman deliuer'd
2335me, the knaue Constable had set me ith' Stocks, ith' com-
mon Stocks, for a Witch.
Qu, Sir: let me speake with you in your Chamber,
you shall heare how things goe, and (I warrant) to your
content: here is a Letter will say somewhat: (good-
2340hearts) what a-doe here is to bring you together? Sure,
one of you do's not serue heauen well, that you are so
cross'd.
Fal. Come vp into my Chamber.
Exeunt.
Scena Sexta.
2345
Enter Fenton, Host.
Host. Master Fenton, talke not to mee, my minde is
heauy: I will giue ouer all.
Fen. Yet heare me speake: assist me in my purpose,
And (as I am a gentleman) ile giue thee
2350A hundred pound in gold, more then your losse.
Host. I will heare you (Master Fenton) and I will (at
the least) keepe your counsell.
Fen. From time to time, I haue acquainted you
With the deare loue I beare to faire Anne Page,
2355Who, mutually, hath answer'd my affection,
(So farre forth, as her selfe might be her chooser)
Euen to my wish; I haue a letter from her
Of such contents, as you will wonder at;
The mirth whereof, so larded with my matter,
2360That neither (singly) can be manifested
Without the shew of both: fat Falstaffe
Hath a great Scene; the image of the iest
Ile show you here at large (harke good mine Host:)
To night at Hernes-Oke, iust 'twixt twelue and one,
2365Must my sweet Nan present the Faerie-Queene:
The purpose why, is here: in which disguise
VVhile other Iests are something ranke on foote,
Her father hath commanded her to slip
Away with Slender, and with him, at Eaton
2370Immediately to Marry: She hath consented: Now Sir,
Her Mother, (euen strong against that match
And firme for Doctor Caius) hath appointed
That he shall likewise shuffle her away,
While other sports are tasking of their mindes,
2375And at the Deanry, where a Priest attends
Strait marry her: to this her Mothers plot
She seemingly obedient) likewise hath
Made promise to the Doctor: Now, thus it rests,
Her Father meanes she shall be all in white;
2380And in that habit, when Slender sees his time
To take her by the hand, and bid her goe,
She shall goe with him: her Mother hath intended
(The better to deuote her to the Doctor;
For they must all be mask'd, and vizarded)
2385That quaint in greene, she shall be loose en-roab'd,
With Ribonds-pendant, flaring 'bout her head;
And when the Doctor spies his vantage ripe,
To pinch her by the hand, and on that token,
The maid hath giuen consent to go with him.
2390Host. Which meanes she to deceiue? Father, or Mo-
ther.
Fen. Both (my good Host) to go along with me:
And heere it rests, that you'l procure the Vicar
To stay for me at Church, 'twixt twelue, and one,
2395And in the lawfull name of marrying,
To giue our hearts vnited ceremony.
Host. Well, husband your deuice; Ile to the Vicar,
Bring you the Maid, you shall not lacke a Priest.
Fen. So shall I euermore be bound to thee;
2400Besides, Ile make a present recompence.
Exeunt
Actus Quintus. Scoena Prima.
Enter Falstoffe, Quickly, and Ford.
Fal. Pre'thee no more pratling: go, Ile hold, this is
the third time: I hope good lucke lies in odde numbers:
2405Away, go, they say there is Diuinity in odde Numbers,
either in natiuity, chance, or death: away.
Qui. Ile prouide you a chaine, and Ile do what I can
to get you a paire of hornes.
Fall. Away I say, time weares, hold vp your head &
2410mince. How now M. Broome? Master Broome, the mat-
ter will be knowne to night, or neuer. Bee you in the
Parke about midnight, at Hernes-Oake, and you shall
see wonders.
Ford. Went you not to her yesterday (Sir) as you told
2415me you had appointed?
Fal. I went to her (Master Broome) as you see, like a
poore-old-man, but I came from her (Master Broome)
like a poore-old-woman; that same knaue (Ford hir hus-
band) hath the finest mad diuell of iealousie in him (Ma-
2420ster Broome) that euer gouern'd Frensie. I will tell you,
he beate me greeuously, in the shape of a woman: (for in
the shape of Man (Master Broome) I feare not Goliah
with a Weauers beame, because I know also, life is a
Shuttle) I am in hast, go along with mee, Ile tell you all
2425(Master Broome:) since I pluckt Geese, plaide Trewant,
and whipt Top, I knew not what 'twas to be beaten, till
lately. Follow mee, Ile tell you strange things of this
knaue Ford, on whom to night I will be reuenged, and I
will deliuer his wife into your hand. Follow, straunge
2430things in hand (M. Broome) follow.
Exeunt.
Scena Secunda.
Enter Page, Shallow, Slender.
Page. Come, come: wee'll couch i'th Castle-ditch,
till we see the light of our Fairies. Remember son Slen-
2435der, my
Slen. I forsooth, I haue spoke with her, & we haue
a nay-word, how to know one another. I come to her
in white, and cry Mum; she cries Budget, and by that
we know one another.
2440Shal. That's good too: But what needes either your
Mum, or her Budget? The white will decipher her well
enough. It hath strooke ten a'clocke.
Page. The night is darke, Light and Spirits will be-
come it wel: Heauen prosper our sport. No man means
2445euill but the deuill, and we shal know him by his hornes.
Lets away: follow me.
Exeunt.
Scena Tertia.
Enter Mist. Page, Mist. Ford, Caius.
Mist. Page. Mr Doctor, my daughter is in green, when
2450you see your time, take her by the hand, away with her
to the Deanerie, and dispatch it quickly: go before into
the Parke: we two must go together.
Cai. I know vat I haue to do, adieu.
Mist. Page. Fare you well (Sir:) my husband will not
2455reioyce so much at the abuse of Falstaffe, as he will chafe
at the Doctors marrying my daughter: But 'tis no mat-
ter; better a little chiding, then a great deale of heart-
breake.
Mist. Ford. Where is Nan now? and her troop of Fai-
2460ries? and the Welch-deuill Herne?
Mist. Page. They are all couch'd in a pit hard by Hernes
Oake, with obscur'd Lights; which at the very instant
of Falstaffes and our meeting, they will at once display to
the night.
2465Mist. Ford. That cannot choose but amaze him.
Mist. Page. If he be not amaz'd he will be mock'd: If
he be amaz'd, he will euery way be mock'd.
Mist. Ford. Wee'll betray him finely.
Mist. Page. Against such Lewdsters, and their lechery,
2470Those that betray them, do no treachery.
Mist. Ford. The houre drawes-on: to the Oake, to the
Oake.
Exeunt.
Scena Quarta.
Enter Euans and Fairies.
2475Euans. Trib, trib Fairies: Come, and remember your
parts: be pold (I pray you) follow me into the pit, and
when I giue the watch-'ords, do as I pid you: Come,
come, trib, trib.
Exeunt
Scena Quinta.
2480
Enter Falstaffe, Mistris Page, Mistris Ford, Euans,
Anne Page, Fairies, Page, Ford, Quickly,
Slender, Fenton, Caius, Pistoll.
Fal. The Windsor-bell hath stroke twelue: the Mi-
nute drawes-on: Now the hot-bloodied-Gods assist me:
2485Remember Ioue, thou was't a Bull for thy Europa, Loue
set on thy hornes. O powerfull Loue, that in some re-
spects makes a Beast a Man: in som other, a Man a beast.
You were also (Iupiter) a Swan, for the loue of Leda: O
omnipotent Loue, how nere the God drew to the com-
2490plexion of a Goose: a fault done first in the forme of a
beast, (O Ioue, a beastly fault:) and then another fault,
in the semblance of a Fowle, thinke on't (Ioue) a fowle-fault.
When Gods haue hot backes, what shall poore
men do? For me, I am heere a Windsor Stagge, and the
2495fattest (I thinke) i'th Forrest. Send me a coole rut-time
(Ioue) or who can blame me to pisse my Tallow? Who
comes heere? my Doe?
M. Ford. Sir Iohn? Art thou there (my Deere?)
My male-Deere?
2500Fal. My Doe, with the blacke Scut? Let the skie
raine Potatoes: let it thunder, to the tune of Greene-
sleeues, haile-kissing Comfits, and snow Eringoes: Let
there come a tempest of prouocation, I will shelter mee
heere.
2505M. Ford. Mistris Page is come with me (sweet hart.)
Fal. Diuide me like a brib'd-Bucke, each a Haunch:
I will keepe my sides to my selfe, my shoulders for the
fellow of this walke; and my hornes I bequeath your
husbands. Am I a Woodman, ha? Speake I like Herne
2510the Hunter? Why, now is Cupid a child of conscience,
he makes restitution. As I am a true spirit, welcome.
M. Page. Alas, what noise?
M. Ford. Heauen forgiue our sinnes.
Fal. What should this be?
2515M. Ford. M. Page. Away, away.
Fal. I thinke the diuell wil not haue me damn'd,
Least the oyle that's in me should set hell on fire;
He would neuer else crosse me thus.
Enter Fairies.
2520Qui. Fairies blacke, gray, greene, and white,
You Moone-shine reuellers, and shades of night.
You Orphan heires of fixed destiny,
Attend your office, and your quality.
Crier Hob-goblyn, make the Fairy Oyes.
2525Pist. Elues, list your names: Silence you aiery toyes.
Cricket, to Windsor-chimnies shalt thou leape;
Where fires thou find'st vnrak'd, and hearths vnswept,
There pinch the Maids as blew as Bill-berry,
Our radiant Queene, hates Sluts, and Sluttery.
2530Fal. They are Fairies, he that speaks to them shall die,
Ile winke, and couch: No man their workes must eie.
Eu. Wher's Bede? Go you, and where you find a maid
That ere she sleepe has thrice her prayers said,
Raise vp the Organs of her fantasie,
2535Sleepe she as sound as carelesse infancie,
But those as sleepe, and thinke not on their sins,
Pinch them armes, legs, backes, shoulders, sides, & shins.
Qu. About, about:
Search Windsor Castle (Elues) within, and out.
2540Strew good lucke (Ouphes) on euery sacred roome,
That it may stand till the perpetuall doome,
In state as wholsome, as in state 'tis fit,
Worthy the Owner, and the Owner it.
The seuerall Chaires of Order, looke you scowre
2545With iuyce of Balme; and euery precious flowre,
Each faire Instalment, Coate, and seu'rall Crest,
With loyall Blazon, euermore be blest.
And Nightly-meadow-Fairies, looke you sing
Like to the Garters-Compasse, in a ring
2550Th' expressure that it beares: Greene let it be,
Mote fertile-fresh then all the Field to see:
And, Hony Soit Qui Mal-y-Pence, write
In Emrold-tuffes, Flowres purple, blew, and white,
Like Saphire-pearle, and rich embroiderie,
2555Buckled below faire Knight-hoods bending knee;
Fairies vse Flowres for their characterie.
Away, disperse: But till 'tis one a clocke,
Our Dance of Custome, round about the Oke
Of Herne the Hunter, let vs not forget.
2560Euan. Pray you lock hand in hand: your selues in order
And twenty glow-wormes shall our Lanthornes bee
To guide our Measure round about the Tree.
But stay, I smell a man of middle earth.
Fal. Heauens defend me from that Welsh Fairy,
2565Least he transforme me to a peece of Cheese.
Pist. Vilde worme, thou wast ore-look'd euen in thy
birth.
Qu. With Triall-fire touch me his finger end:
If he be chaste, the flame will backe descend
2570And turne him to no paine: but if he start,
It is the flesh of a corrupted hart.
Pist. A triall, come.
Eua. Come: will this wood take fire?
Fal. Oh, oh, oh.
2575Qui. Corrupt, corrupt, and tainted in desire.
About him (Fairies) sing a scornfull rime,
And as you trip, still pinch him to your time.
The Song.
Fie on sinnefull phantasie: Fie on Lust, and Luxurie:
2580Lust is but a bloudy fire, kindled with vnchaste desire,
Fed in heart whose flames aspire,
As thoughts do blow them higher and higher.
Pinch him (Fairies) mutually: Pinch him for his villanie.
Pinch him, and burne him, and turne him about,
2585Till Candles, & Star-light, & Moone-shine be out.
Page. Nay do not flye, I thinke we haue watcht you
now: VVill none but Herne the Hunter serue your
turne?
M. Page. I pray you come, hold vp the iest no higher.
2590Now (good Sir Iohn) how like you Windsor wiues?
See you these husband? Do not these faire yoakes
Become the Forrest better then the Towne?
Ford. Now Sir, whose a Cuckold now?
Mr Broome, Falstaffes a Knaue, a Cuckoldly knaue,
2595Heere are his hornes Master Broome:
And Master Broome, he hath enioyed nothing of Fords,
but his Buck-basket, his cudgell, and twenty pounds of
money, which must be paid to Mr Broome, his horses are
arrested for it, Mr Broome.
2600M. Ford. Sir Iohn, we haue had ill lucke: wee could
neuer meete: I will neuer take you for my Loue againe,
but I will alwayes count you my Deere.
Fal. I do begin to perceiue that I am made an Asse.
Ford. I, and an Oxe too: both the proofes are ex-
2605tant.
Fal. And these are not Fairies:
I was three or foure times in the thought they were not
Fairies, and yet the guiltinesse of my minde, the sodaine
surprize of my powers, droue the grossenesse of the fop-
2610pery into a receiu'd beleefe, in despight of the teeth of
all rime and reason, that they were Fairies. See now
how wit may be made a Iacke-a-Lent, when 'tis vpon ill
imployment.
Euans. Sir Iohn Falstaffe, serue Got, and leaue your
2615desires, and Fairies will not pinse you.
Ford. Well said Fairy Hugh.
Euans. And leaue you your iealouzies too, I pray
you.
Ford. I will neuer mistrust my wife againe, till thou
2620art able to woo her in good English.
Fal. Haue I laid my braine in the Sun, and dri'de it,
that it wants matter to preuent so grosse ore-reaching as
this? Am I ridden with a Welch Goate too? Shal I haue
a Coxcombe of Frize? Tis time I were choak'd with a
2625peece of toasted Cheese.
Eu. Seese is not good to giue putter; your belly is al
putter.
Fal. Seese, and Putter? Haue I liu'd to stand at the
taunt of one that makes Fritters of English? This is e-
2630nough to be the decay of lust and late-walking through
the Realme.
Mist. Page. Why Sir Iohn, do you thinke though wee
would haue thrust vertue out of our hearts by the head
and shoulders, and haue giuen our selues without scru-
2635ple to hell, that euer the deuill could haue made you our
delight?
Ford. What, a hodge-pudding? A bag of flax?
Mist. Page. A puft man?
Page. Old, cold, wither'd, and of intollerable en-
2640trailes?
Ford. And one that is as slanderous as Sathan?
Page. And as poore as Iob?
Ford. And as wicked as his wife?
Euan. And giuen to Fornications, and to Tauernes,
2645and Sacke, and Wine, and Metheglins, and to drinkings
and swearings, and starings? Pribles and prables?
Fal. Well, I am your Theame: you haue the start of
me, I am deiected: I am not able to answer the Welch
Flannell, Ignorance it selfe is a plummet ore me, vse me
2650as you will.
Ford. Marry Sir, wee'l bring you to Windsor to one
Mr Broome, that you haue cozon'd of money, to whom
you should haue bin a Pander: ouer and aboue that you
haue suffer'd, I thinke, to repay that money will be a bi-
2655ting affliction.
Page. Yet be cheerefull Knight: thou shalt eat a pos-
set to night at my house, wher I will desire thee to laugh
at my wife, that now laughes at thee: Tell her Mr Slen-
der hath married her daughter.
2660Mist. Page. Doctors doubt that;
If Anne Page be my daughter, she is (by this) Doctour
Caius wife.
Slen. Whoa hoe, hoe, Father Page.
Page. Sonne? How now? How now Sonne,
2665Haue you dispatch'd?
Slen. Dispatch'd? Ile make the best in Glostershire
know on't: would I were hang'd la, else.
Page. Of what sonne?
Slen. I came yonder at Eaton to marry Mistris Anne
2670Page, and she's a great lubberly boy. If it had not bene
i'th Church, I would haue swing'd him, or hee should
haue swing'd me. If I did not thinke it had beene Anne
Page, would I might neuer stirre, and 'tis a Post-masters
Boy.
2675Page. Vpon my life then, you tooke the wrong.
Slen. What neede you tell me that? I think so, when
I tooke a Boy for a Girle: If I had bene married to him,
(for all he was in womans apparrell) I would not haue
had him.
2680Page. Why this is your owne folly,
Did not I tell you how you should know my daughter,
By her garments?
Slen. I went to her in greene, and cried Mum, and
she cride budget, as Anne and I had appointed, and yet
2685it was not Anne, but a Post-masters boy.
Mist. Page. Good George be not angry, I knew of
your purpose: turn'd my daughter into white, and in-
deede she is now with the Doctor at the Deanrie, and
there married.
2690Cai. Ver is Mistris Page: by gar I am cozoned, I ha
married oon Garsoon, a boy; oon pesant, by gar. A boy,
it is not An Page, by gar, I am cozened.
M. Page. VVhy? did you take her in white?
Cai. I bee gar, and 'tis a boy: be gar, Ile raise all
2695Windsor.
Ford. This is strange: Who hath got the right Anne?
Page. My heart misgiues me, here comes Mr Fenton.
How now Mr Fenton?
Anne. Pardon good father, good my mother pardon
2700Page. Now Mistris:
How chance you went not with Mr Slender?
M. Page. Why went you not with Mr Doctor, maid?
Fen. You do amaze her: heare the truth of it,
You would haue married her most shamefully,
2705Where there was no proportion held in loue:
The truth is, she and I (long since contracted)
Are now so sure that nothing can dissolue vs:
Th'offence is holy, that she hath committed,
And this deceit looses the name of craft,
2710Of disobedience, or vnduteous title,
Since therein she doth euitate and shun
A thousand irreligious cursed houres
Which forced marriage would haue brought vpon her.
Ford. Stand not amaz'd, here is no remedie:
2715In Loue, the heauens themselues do guide the state,
Money buyes Lands, and wiues are sold by fate.
Fal. I am glad, though you haue tane a special stand
to strike at me, that your Arrow hath glanc'd.
Page. Well, what remedy? Fenton, heauen giue thee
2720ioy, what cannot be eschew'd, must be embrac'd.
Fal. When night-dogges run, all sorts of Deere are
chac'd.
Mist. Page. Well, I will muse no further: Mr Fenton,
Heauen giue you many, many merry dayes:
2725Good husband, let vs euery one go home,
And laugh this sport ore by a Countrie fire,
Sir Iohn and all.
Ford. Let it be so (Sir Iohn:)
To Master Broome, you yet shall hold your word,
2730For he, to night, shall lye with Mistris Ford:
Exeunt
FINIS.