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  • Title: The Merry Wives of Windsor (Quarto 1, 1602)

  • Copyright Internet Shakespeare Editions. This text may be freely used for educational, non-proift purposes; for all other uses contact the Coordinating Editor.
    Author: William Shakespeare
    Not Peer Reviewed

    The Merry Wives of Windsor (Quarto 1, 1602)

    A pleasant conceited Co-medie, of Syr Iohn Falstaffe, and themerry Wiues of VVindsor.
    Enter Iustice Shallow, Syr Hugh, Maister Page,
    and Slender.
    Shal. NEre talke to me, Ile make a star-cham-
    ber matter of it.
    The Councell shall know it.
    36.1Pag. Nay good maister Shallow be perswaded by
    Slen. Nay surely my vncle shall not put it vp so.
    Sir Hu. Wil you not heare reasons M. Slenders?
    You should heare reasons.
    36.5Shal. Tho he be a knight, he shall not thinke to
    carrie it so away.
    M. Page I will not be wronged. For you
    Syr, I loue you, and for my cousen
    He comes to looke vpon your daughter.
    36.10Pa. And heres my hand, and if my daughter
    Like him so well as I, wee'l quickly haue it a match:
    In the meane time let me intreat you to soiourne
    Here a while. And on my life Ile vndertake
    To make you friends.
    36.15Sir Hu. I pray you M. Shallowes let it be so.
    The matter is pud to arbitarments.
    130The first man is M. Page, videlicet M. Page.
    130The second is my selfe, videlicet my selfe.
    And the third and last man, is mine host of the gar-
    Enter Syr Iohn Falstaffe, Pistoll, Bardolfe,
    and Nim.
    Here is sir Iohn himselfe now, looke you.
    105Fal. Now M. Shallow, youle complaine of me
    to the Councell, I heare?
    Shal. Sir Iohn, sir Iohn, you haue hurt my keeper,
    Kild my dogs, stolne my deere.
    Fal. But not kissed your keepers daughter.
    110Shal. Well this shall be answered.
    Fal. Ile answere it strait. I haue done all this.
    This is now answred.
    Shal. Well, the Councell shall know it.
    Fal. Twere better for you twere knowne in
    115Youle be laught at.
    Sir Hu. Good vrdes sir Iohn, good vrdes.
    Fal. Good vrdes, good Cabidge.
    Slender I brake your head,
    What matter haue you against mee?
    Slen. I haue matter in my head against you and
    120your cogging companions, Pistoll and Nym. They
    120.1carried mee to the Tauerne and made mee drunke,
    and afterward picked my pocket.
    Fal. What say you to this Pistoll, did you picke
    Maister Slenders purse Pistoll?
    Slen. I by this handkercher did he. Two faire
    shouell boord shillings, besides seuen groats in mill
    Fal. What say you to this Pistoll?
    150Pist. Sir Iohn, and Maister mine, I combat craue
    150Of this same laten bilbo. I do retort the lie
    150.1Euen in thy gorge, thy gorge, thy gorge.
    Slen. By this light it was he then.
    153.1Nym. Syr my honor is not for many words,
    155But if you run bace humors of me,
    I will say mary trap. And there's the humor of it.
    Fal. You heare these matters denide gentlemẽ,
    You heare it.
    Enter Mistresse Foord, Mistresse Page, and her
    daughter Anne.
    Pa. No more now,
    I thinke it be almost dinner time,
    173.5For my wife is come to meet vs.
    Fal. Mistresse Foord, I thinke your name is,
    If I mistake not.
    Syr Iohn kisses her.
    Mis. Ford. Your mistake sir is nothing but in the
    173.10Mistresse. But my husbands name is Foord sir.
    Fal. I shall desire your more acquaintance.
    The like of you good misteris Page.
    Mis. Pa. With all my hart sir Iohn.
    Come husband will you goe?
    173.15Dinner staies for vs.
    Pa. With all my hart, come along Gentlemen.
    Exit all, but Slender and
    mistresse Anne.
    Anne. Now forsooth why do you stay me?
    173.20What would you with me?
    Slen. Nay for my owne part, I would litle or no-
    thing with you. I loue you well, and my vncle can
    tell you how my liuing stands. And if you can loue
    me why so. If not, why then happie man be his
    An. You say well M. Slender.
    But first you must giue me leaue to
    Be acquainted with your humor,
    And afterward to loue you if I can.
    273.30Slen. Why by God, there's neuer a man in chri-
    stendome can desire more. What haue you Beares
    in your Towne mistresse Anne, your dogs barke so?
    An. I cannot tell M. Slender, I thinke there be.
    270Slen. Ha how say you? I warrant your afeard of
    a Beare let loose, are you not?
    An. Yes trust me.
    Slen. Now that's meate and drinke to me,
    Ile run yon to a Beare, and take her by the mussell,
    269.1You neuer saw the like.
    But indeed I cannot blame you,
    For they are maruellous rough things.
    272.1An. Will you goe in to dinner M. Slendor?
    The meate staies for you.
    Slen. No faith not I. I thanke you,
    260I cannot abide the smell of hot meate
    Nere since I broke my shin. Ile tel you how it came
    By my troth. A Fencer and I plaid three venies
    For a dish of stewd prunes, and I with my ward
    259.1Defending my head, he hot my shin. Yes faith.
    Enter Maister Page.
    Pa. Come, come Maister Slender, dinner staies for
    Slen. I can eate no meate, I thanke you.
    275Pa. You shall not choose I say.
    Slen. Ile follow you sir, pray leade the way.
    Nay be God misteris Anne, you shall goe first,
    I haue more manners then so, I hope.
    281.1An. Well sir, I will not be troublesome.
    Exit omnes.