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Author: William Shakespeare
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The Merry Wives of Windsor (Quarto 1, 1602)

Most pleasaunt and
excellent conceited Co-
medie, of Syr Iohn Falstaffe, and the
merrie Wiues of Windsor.
Entermixed with sundrie
variable and pleasing humors, of Syr Hugh
the Welch Knight, Iustice Shallow, and his
wise Cousin M. Slender.
With the swaggering vaine of Auncient
Pistoll, and Corporall Nym.
By William Shakespeare.
As it hath bene diuers times Acted by the right Honorable
my Lord Chamberlaines seruants. Both before her
Maiestrie, and else-where.
Printed by T.C. for Arthur Iohnson, and are to be sold at
his shop in Powles Church-yard, at the signe of the
Flower de Leuse and the Crowne.
A pleasant conceited Co-
medie, of Syr Iohn Falstaffe, and the
merry 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 (mee.
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.
The second is my selfe, videlicet my selfe.
And the third and last man, is mine host of the gar-(tyr.
131.1Enter 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 (counsell,
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
the merry wives of windsor.
Fal. What say you to this Pistoll?
150Pist. Sir Iohn, and Maister mine, I combat craue
Of 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.
173.1Enter 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.
A pleasant Comedie, of
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.
the merry wives of windsor.
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.
285Exit omnes.
Enter sir Hugh and Simple, from dinner.
Sir Hu. Hark you Simple, pray you beare this letter
to Doctor Cayus house, the French Doctor. He is
288.1twell vp along the street, and enquire of his house
for one mistris Quickly, his woman, or his try nurse,
and deliuer this Letter to her, it tis about Maister
293.1Slender. Looke you, will you do it now?
Sim. I warrant you Sir.
Sir Hu. Pray you do, I must not be absent at the
296.1 grace.
I will goe make an end of my dinner,
There is pepions and cheese behinde.
Exit omnes.
300Enter sir Iohn Falstaffes Host of the Garter,
Nym, Bardolfe, Pistoll, and the boy.
Fal. Mine Host of the Garter.
B Host.
A pleasant Comedie, of
Host. What ses my bully Rooke?
Speake schollerly and wisely.
Fal. Mine Host, I must turne away some of my
Host. Discard bully, Hercules cassire.
Let them wag, trot, trot.
Fal. I sit at ten pound a weeke.
Host. Thou art an Emperour Caesar, Phesser and
Kesar bully.
310Ile entertaine Bardolfe. He shall tap, he shall draw.
Said I well, bully Hector?
Fal. Do good mine Host.
Host. I haue spoke. Let him follow. Bardolfe
Let me see thee froth, and lyme. I am at
A word. Follow, follow.
314.1Exit Host.
315Fal. Do Bardolfe, a Tapster is a good trade,
An old cloake will make a new Ierkin,
A withered seruingman, a fresh Tapster:
Follow him Bardolfe.
Bar. I will sir, Ile warrant you Ile make a good
shift to liue.
318.1Exit Bardolfe.
Pis. O bace gongarian wight, wilt thou the spic-
ket willd?
319.1Nym. His minde is not heroick. And theres the
humor of it.
Fal. Well my Laddes, I am almost out at the
Pis. Why then let cybes insue.
328.1Nym. I thanke thee for that humor.
the merry wives of windsor.
Fal. Well I am glad I am so rid of this tinder
His stealth was too open, his filching was like
An vnskilfull singer, he kept not time.
Nym. The good humor is to steale at a minutes
324.1Pis. Tis so indeed Nym, thou hast hit it right.
Fal. Well, afore God, I must cheat, I must cony-
Which of you knowes Foord of this Towne?
Pis. I ken the wight, he is of substance good.
Fal. Well my honest Lads, Ile tell you what
I am about.
Pis. Two yards and more.
335Fal. No gibes now Pistoll: indeed I am two yards
In the wast, but now I am about no wast:
Briefly, I am about thrift you rogues you,
I do intend to make loue to Foords wife,
I espie entertainment in her. She carues, she
Discourses. She giues the lyre of inuitation,
And euery part to be constured rightly is, I am
Syr Iohn Falstaffes.
Pis. He hath studied her well, out of honestie
Into English.
345Fal. Now the report goes, she hath all the rule
Of her husbands purse. She hath legians of angels.
Pis. As many diuels attend her.
And to her boy say I.
Fal. Heree's a Letter to her. Heeres another to
350 misteris Page.
B2 Who
A pleasant Comedie, of
Who euen now gaue me good eies too, examined
my exteriors with such a greedy intentiõ, with the
beames of her beautie, that it seemed as she would
a scorged me vp like a burning glasse. Here is ano-
ther Letter to her, shee beares the purse too. They
shall be Excheckers to me, and Ile be cheaters to
them both. They shall be my East and West Indies
and Ile trade to them both. Heere beare thou this
Letter to mistresse Foord. And thou this to mistresse
Page. Weele thriue Lads, we will thriue.
Pist. Shall I sir Panderowes of Troy become?
And by my sword were steele.
Then Lucifer take all.
Nym. Here take your humor Letter againe,
For my part, I will keepe the hauior
Of reputation. And theres the humor of it.
370Fal. Here firrha beare me these Letters titely,
Saile like my pinnice to the golden shores:
Hence slaues, avant. Vanish like hailstones, goe.
Falstaffe will learne the humor of this age,
375French thrift you rogue, my selfe and scirted Page.
375.1Exit Falstaffe,
and the Boy.
Pis. And art thou gone? Teaster Ile haue in pouch
When thou shalt want, bace Phrygian Turke.
380Nym. I haue operations in my head, which are
humors of reuenge.
Pis. Wilt thou reuenge?
Nym. By Welkin and her Fairies.
Pis. By wit, or sword?
385Nym. With both the humors I will disclose this
loue to Page. Ile poses him with Iallowes,
the merry wives of windsor.
386.1And theres the humor of it.
Pis. And I to Foord will likewise tell
How Falstaffe varlot vilde,
Would haue her loue, his doue would proue,
390And eke his bed defile.
390.1 Nym. Let vs about it then.
395Pis. Ile second thee : sir Corporall Nym troope (on.
Exit omnes.
Enter Mistresse Quickly, and Simple.
415Quic. M. Slender is your Masters name say you?
Sim. I indeed that is his name.
416.1Quic. How say you? I take it hee is somewhat a
weakly man:
And he has as it were a whay coloured beard.
420Sim. Indeed my maisters beard is kane colored.
420.1Quic. Kane colour, you say well.
And is this Letter from sir Yon, about Misteris An,
Is it not?
Sim. I indeed is it.
420.5Quic. So: and your Maister would haue me as
it twere to speak to misteris Anne concerning him:
I promise you my M.
hath a great affectioned mind
to mistresse Anne himselfe. And if he should know
that I should as they say, giue my verdit for any one
420.10but himselfe, I should heare of it throughly : For
I tell you friend, he puts all his priuities in me.
429.1Sim. I by my faith you are a good staie to hiM.
Quic. Am I? I and you knew all yowd say so:
485 Washing, brewing, baking, all goes through my(hands,
485.1Or else it would be but a woe house.
Sim. I beshrow me, one woman to do all this,
B3 Is.
A pleasant Comedie, of
488.1Is very painfull.
490Quic. Are you auised of that? I, I warrant you,
490.1Take all, and paie all, all goe through my hands,
And he is such a honest man, and he should chance
To come home and finde a man here, we should
403.1Haue no who with him. He is a parlowes man.
Sim. Is he indeed?
Quic. Is he quoth you? God keepe him abroad:
Lord blesse me, who knocks there?
For Gods sake step into the Counting-house,
433.1While I goe see whose at doore.
He steps into the Counting-house.
What Iohn Rugby, Iohn,
Are you come home sir alreadie?
And she opens the doore.
433.5Doct. I begar I be forget my oyntment,
VVhere be Iohn Rugby?
448.1Enter Iohn.
450Rug. Here sir, do you call?
Doc. I you be Iohn Rugbie, and you be Iack Rugby
Goe run vp met your heeles, and bring away
452.1De oyntment in de vindoe present:
455Make hast Iohn Rugbie. O I am almost forget
My simples in a boxe in de Counting-house:
O Ieshu vat be here, a deuella, a deuella?
460My Rapier Iohn Rugby, Vat be you, vat make
You in my Counting-house?
458.1I tinck you be a teefe.
Quic. Ieshu blesse me, we are all vndone.
Sim. O Lord sir no: I am no theefe.
I am a Seruingman :
the merry wives of windsor.
458.5My name is Iohn Simple, I brought a Letter sir
From my M. Slender, about misteris Anne Page.
474.1Sir : Indeed that is my comming.
Doc. I begar is dat all? Iohn Rugby giue a ma pen
An Inck:tarche vn pettit tarche a little.
478.1The Doctor writes.
Sim. O God what a furious man is this?
Quic. Nay it is well he is no worse:
480I am glad he is so quiet.
Doc. Here giue dat same to sir Hu, it ber ve chalēge
Begar tell him I will cut his nase, will you?
497.1Sim. I sir, Ile tell him so.
Doc. Dat be vell, my Rapier Iohn Rugby, follow (may,
512.1Exit Doctor.
Quic. VVell my friend, I cannot tarry, tell your
Maister Ile doo what I can for him,
And so farewell.
512.5Sim. Mary will I, I am glad I am got hence.
Exit omnes.
Enter Mistresse Page, reading of
552.1a Letter.
Mis.Pa. Mistresse Page I loue you. Aske me no(reason,
557.1Because theyr impossible to alledge. Your faire,
And I am fat. Yon loue sack, so do I:
As I am sure I haue no mind but to loue,
562.1So I know you haue no hart but to grant
A souldier doth not vse many words, where a (knowes
A letter may serue for a sentence. I loue you,
And so I leaue you.
Yours Syr Iohn Falstaffe.
A pleasant Comedie, of
562.5Now Ieshu blesse me, am I methomorphised?
I thinke I knowe not my selfe. Why what a Gods
name doth this man see in me, that thus he shootes
at my honestie? Well but that I knowe my owne
heart, I should scarcely perswade my selfe I were
562.10hand. Why what an vnreasonable woolsack is this.
He was neuer twice in my companie, and if then I
thought I gaue such assurauce with my eies, Ide pul
them out, they should neuer see more holie daies.
Well, I shall trust fat men the worse while I liue for
his sake. O God that I knew how to be reuenged of
577.1him. But in good time, heeres mistresse Foord.
Enter Mistresse Foord.
Mis. For. How now Mistris Page, are you reading
Loue Letters? How do you woman?
577.5Mis. Pa. O woman I am I know not what:
In loue vp to the hard eares. I was neuer in such a
case in my life.
Mis. For. In loue, now in the name of God with
577.10Mis. Pa. With one that sweares he loues me,
And I must not choose but do the like againe:
I prethie looke on that Letter.
Mis. For. Ile match your letter iust with the like,
614.1Line for line, word for word. Only the name
Of misteris Page, and misteris Foord disagrees:
Do me the kindnes to looke vpon this.
Mis. Pa.Why this is right my letter.
O most notorious villaine!
Why what a bladder of iniquitie is this?
Lets be reuenged what so ere we do.
636.1Mis. For. Reuenged, if we liue weel be reuenged.
O Lord
the merry wives of windsor.
O Lord if my husband should see this Letter,
Ifaith this would euen giue edge to his Iealousie.
642.1Enter Ford, Page, Pistoll and Nym.
Mis. Pa. See where our husbands are,
645Mine's as far from Iealousie,
As I am from wronging him.
645.1Pis. Ford the words I speake are forst:
Beware, take heed, for Falstaffe loues thy wife:
653.1When Pistoll lies do this.
Ford. Why sir my wife is not young.
655Pis. He wooes both yong and old, both rich and (poore
None comes amis. I say he loues thy wife:
656.1Faire warning did I giue, take heed,
665For sommer comes, and Cuckoo birds appeare:
665.1Page belieue him what he ses. Away sir Corporall(Nym.
Exit Pistoll:
Nym. Syr the humor of it is, he loues your wife,
670I should ha borne the humor Letter to her:
I speake and I auouch tis true: My name is Nym.
675 Farwell, I loue not the humor of bread and cheese:
675.1And theres the humor of it. Exit Nym.
Pa. The humor of it, quoth you:
Heres a fellow frites humor out of his wits.
Mis. Pa. How now sweet hart, how dost thou?
687.1Enter Mistresse Quickly.
Pa. How now man? How do you mistris Ford?
Mis. For. Well I thanke you good M. Page.
How now husband, how chaunce thou art so me-
Ford. Melancholy, I am not melancholy.
690Goe get you in, goe.
Mis. For. God saue me, see who yonder is:
C Weele
A pleasant Comedie, of
Weele set her a worke in this businesse.
Mis. Pa. O sheele serue excellent.
Now you come to see my daughter An I am sure.
Quic. I forsooth that is my comming.
700Mis. Pa. Come go in with me. Come Mis. Ford.
700.1Mis. For. I follow you Mistresse Page.
Exit Mistresse Ford, Mis. Page, and Quickly.
For. M. Page did you heare what these fellowes(said?
Pa. Yes M. Ford, what of that sir?
705For. Do you thinke it is true that they told vs?
705.1Pa. No by my troth do I not,
I rather take them to be paltry lying knaues,
Such as rather speakes of enuie,
Then of any certaine they haue
705.5Of any thing. And for the knight, perhaps
He hath spoke merrily, as the fashion of fat men
Are: But should he loue my wife,
Ifaith Ide turne her loose to him:
And what he got more of her,
705.10Then ill lookes, and shrowd words,
Why let me beare the penaltie of it.
For. Nay I do not mistrust my wife,
Yet Ide be loth to turne them together,
A man may be too confident.
719.1Enter Host and Shallow.
Pa. Here comes my ramping host of the garter,
Ther's either licker in his hed, or mony in his purse,
That he lookes so merily. Now mine Host?
Host. God blesse you my bully rookes, God blesse(you.
Cauelera Iustice I say.
Shal. At hand mine host, at hand. M. Ford god den( to you.
728.1God den an twentie good M. Page.
I tell
the merry wives of windsor.
730I tell you sir we haue sport in hand.
Host. Tell him cauelira Iustice: tell him bully(rooke.
735Ford. Mine Host a the garter:
735.1Host. What ses my bully rooke?
Ford. A word with you sir.
Ford and the Host talkes.
Shal. Harke you sir, Ile tell you what the sport (shall be,
Doctor Cayus and sir Hu are to fight,
My merrie Host hath had the measuring
Of their weapons, and hath
Appointed them contrary places. Harke in your (eare:
Host: Hast thou no shute against my knight,
My guest, my cauellira:
For. None I protest: But tell him my name
Is Rrooke, onlie for a Iest.
Host: My hand bully: Thou shalt
Haue egres and regres, and thy
Name shall be Brooke: Sed I well bully Hector?
Shal. I tell you what M. Page, I beleeue
740The Doctor is no Iester, heele laie it on:
740.1For tho we be Iustices and Doctors,
And Church men, yet we are
The sonnes of women M. Page:
Pa: True maister Shallow:
740.5Shal: It will be found so maister Page:
Pa. Maister Shallow you your selfe
Haue bene a great fighter,
Tho now a man of peace:
Shal: M. Page I haue seene the day that yong
Tall fellowes with their stroke & their passado,
757.1I haue made them trudge Maister Page,
755A tis the hart, the hart doth all: I
C2 Haue
A pleasant Comedie, of
Haue seene the day, with my two hand sword
I would a made you foure tall Fencers
Scipped like Rattes.
Host. Here boyes, shall we wag, shall we wag?
760Shal. Ha with you mine host.
760.1Exit Host and Shallow.
Pa. Come M. Ford, shall we to dinner?
I know these fellowes sticks in your minde.
For. No in good sadnesse not in mine:
765Yet for all this Ile try it further,
765.1I will not leaue it so:
Come M. Page, shall we to dinner?
Pa. With all my hart sir, Ile follow you.
Exit omnes.
770Enter Syr Iohn, and Pistoll.
Fal. Ile not lend thee a peny.
772.1Pis. I will retort the sum in equipage.
775Fal. Not a pennie: I haue beene content you
shuld lay my countenance to pawne: I haue grated
vpon my good friends for 3. repriues, for you and
your Coach fellow Nym, else you might a looked
thorow a grate like a geminy of babones. I am dam-
ned in hell for swearing to Gentlemen your good
souldiers and tall fellowes: And when mistrisse Bri-
get lost the handle of her Fan, I tooked on my ho-
thou hadst it not.
Pis. Didst thou not share? hadst thou not fif-
teene pence?
Fal. Reason you rogue, reason.
Doest thou thinke Ile indanger my soule gratis?
In briefe, hang no more about mee, I am no gybit
for you. A short knife and a throng to your manner
the merry wives of windsor.
of pickt hatch, goe. Youle not beare a Letter for me
790you rogue you: you stand vpon your honor. Why
thou vnconfinable basenesse thou, tis as much as I
can do to keep the termes of my honor precise. I, I
my selfe sometimes, leauing the feare of God on
the left hand, am faine to shuffel, to filch & to lurch.
795And yet you stand vpon your honor, you rogue.
You, you.
800Pis. I do recant: what woullst thou more of man?
800.1Fal. Well, gotoo, away, no more.
Enter Mistresse Quickly.
Quic. Good you god den sir.
Fal. Good den faire wife.
805Quic. Not so ant like your worship.
Fal. Faire mayd then.
Quic. That I am Ile be sworne, as my mother (was
The first houre I was borne.
810Sir I would speake with you in priuate.
Fal. Say on I prethy, heeres none but my owne
812.1 houshold.
Quic. Are they so? Now God blesse them, and
make them his seruants.
Syr I come from Mistresse Foord.
Fal. So from Mistresse Foord. Goeon.
817.1Quic. I sir, she hath sent me to you to let you
Vnderstand she hath receiued your Letter,
849.1And let me tell you, she is one stands vpon her cre-(dit.
Fal. Well, come Misteris Ford, Misteris Ford.
Quic. I sir, and as they say, she is not the first
Hath bene led in a fooles paradice.
849.5Fal. Nay prethy be briefe my good she Mercury.
Quic. Mary sir, sheed haue you meet her between
eight and nine.
C3 Fal.
A pleasant Comedie, of
Fal. So betweene eight and nine:
859.1Quic. I forsooth, for then her husband goes a (birding,
Fal. Well commend me to thy mistris, tel her
895I will not faile her: Boy giue her my purse.
Quic. Nay sir I haue another arant to do to you
From misteris Page:
862.1Fal. From misteris Page? I prethy what of her?
Quic. By my troth I think you work by Inchant-(ments,
869.1Els they could neuer loue you as they doo:
Fal. Not I, I assure thee: setting the atraction of my
Good parts aside, I vse no other inchantments:
872.1Quic. Well sir, she loues you extreemly:
And let me tell you, shees one that feares God,
And her husband giues her leaue to do all:
880For he is not halfe so iealousie as M. Ford is.
Fal. But harke thee, hath misteris Page & mistris(Ford,
875Acquainted each other how dearly they loue me?
875.1Quic. O God no sir: there were a iest indeed.
Fol. Well farwel, commend me to misteris Ford,
894.1I will not faile her say.
Quic. God be with your worship
Exit Mistresse Quickly.
Enter Bardolfe.
Bar. Sir heer's a Gentleman,
One M. Brooke, would speak with you,
He hath sent you a cup of sacke.
Fal. M. Brooke, hees welcome: Bid him come vp,
Such Brookes are alwaies welcome to me:
911.1A Iack, will thy old bodie yet hold out?
Wilt thou after the expence of so much mony
Be now a gainer? Good bodie I thanke thee,
And Ile make more of thee then I ha done:
the merry wives of windsor.
911.5Ha, ha, misteris Ford, and misteris Page, haue
I caught you a the hip? go too.
Enter Foord disguised like Brooke.
For. God saue you sir.
915Fal. And you too, would you speak with me?
Fal. Mary would I sir, I am somewhat bolde to(trouble you,
My name is Brooke.
Fal. Good M. Brooke your verie welcome.
920For. Ifaith sir I am a gentleman and a traueller,
That haue seen somewhat. And I haue often heard
That if mony goes before, all waies lie open.
930Fal. Mony is a good souldier sir, and will on.
For. Ifaith sir, and I haue a bag here,
Would you wood helpe me to beare it.
Fal. O Lord, would I could tell how to deserue
To be your porter.
934.1For. That may you easily sir Iohn: I haue an ear-(nest
945Sute to you. But good sir Iohn when I haue
Told you my griefe, cast one eie of your owne
Estate, since your selfe knew what tis to be
Such an offender.
950Fal. Verie well sir, proceed.
For. Sir I am deeply in loue with one Fords wife
951.1Of this Towne. Now sir Iohn you are a gentleman
Of good discoursing, well beloued among Ladies,
A man of such parts that might win 20. such as she.
Fal. O good sir.
953.1For. Nay beleeue it sir Iohn, for tis time. Now my(loue
Is so grounded vpon her, that without her loue
I shall hardly liue.
Fal. Haue you importuned her by any means?
Ford. No neuer Sir.
Fal. Of
A pleasant Comedie, of
Fal. Of what qualitie is your loue then?
975Ford. Ifaith sir, like a faire house set vpon
Another mans foundation.
Fal. And to what end haue you vnfolded this to (me?
For. O sir, when I haue told you that, I told you(all:
For she sir stands so pure in the firme state
Of her honestie, that she is too bright to be looked
Against: Now could I come against her
With some detectiõ, I should sooner perswade her
From her marriage vow, and a hundred such nice
Tearmes that sheele stand vpon.
995Fal. Why would it apply well to the veruensie
of your affection,
That another should possesse what you would en-(joy?
Meethinks you prescribe verie proposterously
To your selfe.
997.1For. No sir, for by that meanes should I be cer-
taine of that which I now misdoubt.
Fal. Well M. Brooke, Ile first make bold with your (mony,
Next, giue me your hand. Lastly, you shall
1010And you will, enioy Fords wife.
For. O good sir.
Fal. M. Brooke, I say you shall.
Ford. Want no mony Syr Iohn, you shall want (none.
Fal. Want no Misteris Ford M. Brooke,
You shall want none. Euen as you came to me,
Her spokes mate, her go between parted from me:
I may tell you M. Brooke, I am to meet her
Between 8. and 9. for at that time the Iealous
Cuckally knaue her husband wil be from home,
Come to me soone at night, you shall know how
1020I speed M. Brooke.
the merry wives of windsor.
Ford. Sir do you know Ford?
Fal. Hang him poore cuckally knaue, I know (him not,
And yet I wrong him to call him poore. For they
Say the cuckally knaue hath legions of angels,
For the which his wife seemes to me well fauored,
And Ile vse her as the key of the cuckally knaues
Coffer, and there's my randeuowes.
Ford. Meethinkes sir it were very good that you(knew
1030Ford, that you might shun hiM.
Fal. Hang him cuckally knaue, Ile stare him
Out of his wits, Ile keepe him in awe
With this my cudgell: It shall hang like a meator
Ore the wittolly knaues head, M. Brooke thou shalt
See I will predominate ore the peasant,
1035And thou shalt lie with his wife. M. Brooke
Thou shalt know him for knaue and cuckold,
Come to me soone at night.
1038.1Exit Falstaffe.
Ford. What a damned epicurian is this?
My wife hath sent for him, the plot is laid:
Page is an Asse, a foole. A secure Asse,
Ile sooner trust an Irishman with my
Aquauita bottle, Sir Hu our parson with my cheese,
1055A theefe to walk my ambling gelding, thẽ my wife
With her selfe: then she plots, then she ruminates,
And what she thinkes in her hart she may effect,
Sheele breake her hart but she will effect it.
God be praised, God be praised for my iealousie:
1060Well Ile goe preuent him, the time drawes on,
Better an houre too soone, then a minit too late,
Gods my life cuckold, cuckold.
Exit Ford.
D Enter
A pleasant Comedie, of
Enter the Doctor and his man.
Doc. Iohn Rugbie goe looke met your eies ore de(stall,
1067.1And spie and you can see de parson.
Rug. Sir I cannot tell whether he be there or no,
But I see a great many comming.
Doc. Bully moy, mon rapier Iohn Rugabie, begarde
Hearing be not so dead as I shall make him.
1077.1Enter Shallow, Page, my Host, and Slender.
Pa. God saue you M. Doctor Cayus.
Shal. How do you M. Doctor?
Host. God blesse thee my bully doctor, God blesse(thee,
Doc. Vat be all you, Van to tree com for, a?
Host. Bully to see thee fight, to see thee foine, to
see thee trauerse, to see thee here, to see thee there,
to see thee passe the punto. The stock, the reuerse,
1090the distance: the montnce is a dead my francoyes?
Is a dead my Ethiopian? Ha what ses my gallon?
my escuolapis? Is a dead bullies taile, is a dead?
Doc. Begar de preest be a coward Iack knaue,
1095He dare not shew his face.
Host. Thou art a castallian king vrinall.
Hector of Greece my boy.
Shal. He hath showne himselfe the wiser man
M. Doctor:
Sir Hugh is a Parson, and you a Phisition. You must
Goe with me M. Doctor.
Host. Pardon bully Iustice. A word monsire(mockwater.
Doc. Mockwater, vat me dat?
1120Host. That is in our English tongue, Vallor bully,
the merry wives of windsor.
Doc. Begar den I haue as mockuater as de Inglish
Iack dog, knaue.
1125Host. He will claperclaw thee titely bully.
Doc. Claperclawe, vat be dat?
Host. That is, he will make thee amends.
Doc. Begar I do looke he shal claperclaw me dẽ,
1130And Ile prouoke him to do it, or let him wag:
And moreouer bully, but M. Page and M. Shallow
And eke cauellira Slender, go you all ouer the fields
to Frogmore?
1135Pa. Sir Hugh is there, is hee?
Host. He is there: goe see what humor hee is in,
Ile bring the Doctor about by the fields:
Will it do well?
Shal. We wil do it my host. Farwel M. Doctor.
1138.1Exit all but the Host and Doctor.
1140Doc. Begar I will kill de cowardly Iack preest,
He is make a foole of moy.
Host. Let him die, but first sheth your impatience,
Throw cold water on your collor, com go with me
Through the fields to Frogmore, and Ile bring thee
Where mistris An Page is a feasting at a farm house,
1145And thou shalt wear hir cried game: sed I wel bully
Doc. Begar excellent vel: and if you speak pour
moy, I shall procure you de gesse of all de gentelmẽ
mon patinces. I begar I sall.
1150Host. For the which Ile be thy aduersary
To misteris An Page: Sed I well?
Doc. I begar excellent.
Host. Let vs wag then.
1153.1Doc. Alon, alon, alon.
1155Exit omnes.
D2 Enter
A pleasant Comedie, of
Enter Syr Hugh and Simple.
Sir Hu. I pray you do so much as see if you can (espie
Doctor Cayus comming, and giue me intelligence,
1161.1Or bring me vrde if you please now.
Sim. I will Sir.
Sir Hu. Ieshu ples mee, how my hart trobes, and(trobes,
And then she made him bedes of Roses,
1175And a thousand fragrant poses,
To shallow riueres.
Now so kad vdge me, my hart
Swelles more and more. Mee thinkes I can cry
1176.1Verie well.
There dwelt a man in Babylon,
1180To shallow riuers and to falles,
Melodious birds sing Madrigalles.
Sim. Sir here is M. Page, and M. Shallow,
Comming hither as fast as they can.
1185Sir Hu. Then it is verie necessary I put vp my (sword,
Pray giue me my cowne too, marke you.
1185.1Enter Page, shallow, and Slender.
Pa. God saue you Sir Hugh.
1191.1Shal. God saue you M. parson
Sir Hu. God plesse you all from his mercies sake(now.
Pa. What the word and the sword, doth that a-
1193.1 gree well?
Sir Hu. There is reasons and causes in all things,
1197.1I warrant you now.
Pa. Well Sir Hugh, we are come to craue
Your helpe and furtherance in a matter.
1200Sir Hu. What is I pray you?
Pa. Ifaith tis this sir Hugh. There is an auncient
friend of ours, a man of verie good sort, so at oddes
the merry wives of windsor.
with one patience, that I am sure you would hartily
grieue to see him. Now Sir Hugh, you are a scholler
1203.1well red, and verie perswasiue, we would intreate
you to see if you could intreat him to patience.
Sir Hu. I pray you who is it? Let vs know that.
Pa. I am shure you know him, tis Doctor Cayus.
Sir Hu. I had as leeue you should tel me of a messe(of poredge,
1215He is an arant lowsie beggerly knaue:
And he is a coward beside.
Pa. Why Ile laie my life tis the man
That he should fight withall.
1217.1Enter Doctor and the Host, they
offer to fight.
1220Shal. Keep them asunder, take away their wea-(pons.
Host. Disarme, let them question.
Shal. Let them keep their limbs hole, and hack
1225 our English.
Doc. Hark van vrd in your eare. You be vn daga
And de Iack, coward preest.
Sir Hu. Harke you, let vs not be laughing stockes
to other mens humors. By Ieshu I will knock your
vrinalls about your knaues cockcomes, for missing
1233.1your meetings and appointments.
1235Doc. O Ieshu mine host of de garter, Iohn Rogoby,
Haue I not met him at de place he make apoint,
1236.1Haue I not?
Sir Hu. So kad vdge me, this is the pointment (place,
Witnes by my Host of the garter.
Host. Peace I say gawle and gawlia, French and(Wealch,
Soule curer, and bodie curer.
Doc. This is verie braue, excellent.
Host. Peace I say, heare mine host of the garter,
D3 Am
A pleasant Comedie, of
1245Am I wise? am I polliticke? am I Matchauil?
Shall I lose my doctor? No, he giues me the motiõs
And the potions. Shall I lose my parson, my sir Hu?
No, he giues me the prouerbes, and the nouerbes:
Giue me thy hand terestiall,
1249.1So giue me thy hand celestiall:
So boyes of art I haue deceiued you both,
1250I haue directed you to wrong places,
Your hearts are mightie, you skins are whole,
Bardolfe laie their swords to pawne. Follow me lads
Of peace, follow me. Ha, ra, la. Follow. Exit Host.
1255Shal. Afore God a mad host, come let vs goe.
Doc. I begar haue you mocka may thus?
I will be euen met you my Iack Host.
1258.1Sir Hu. Giue me your hand Doctor Cayus,
We be all friends:
1261.1But for mine hosts foolish knauery, let me alone.
1260Doc. I dat be vell begar I be friends. (Exit omnes
Enter M. Foord.
1268.1For. The time drawes on he shuld come to my(house,
Well wife, you had best worke closely,
Or I am like to goe beyond your cunning:
I now wil seek my guesse that comes to dinner,
1268.5And in good time see where they all are come.
Enter Shallow, Page, host, Slender, Doctor,
and sir Hugh.
By my faith a knot well met: your welcome all.
Pa. I thanke you good M. Ford.
1268.10For. Welcome good M. Page,
I would your daughter were here.
Pa. I thank you sir, she is very well at home.
Slen. Father Page I hope I haue your consent
For Misteris Anne?
the merry wives of windsor.
Pa. You haue sonne Slender, but my wife here,
Is altogether for maister Doctor.
1325Doc. Begar I tanck her hartily:
Host. But what say you to yong Maister Fenton?
He capers, he daunces, he writes verses, he smelles
All April and May: he wil cary it, he wil carit,
1330Tis in his betmes he wil carite.
Pa. My host not with my cõsent: the gentleman is
Wilde, he knowes too much: If he take her,
1335Let him take her simply: for my goods goes
With my liking, and my liking goes not that way.
For. Well I pray go home with me to dinner:
Besides your cheare Ile shew you wonders: Ile
1340Shew you a monster. You shall go with me
M. Page, and so shall you sir Hugh, and you Maister
1341.1S Hu If there be one in the company, I shal make(two:
Doc. And dere be ven to, I sall make de tird:
Sir Hu, In your teeth for shame,
Shal: wel, wel, God be with you, we shall haue the (fairer
1341.5Wooing at Maister Pages:
Exit Shallow and Slender,
1345Host Ile to my honest knight sir Iohn Falstaffe,
And drinke Canary with him. Exit host.
Ford. I may chance to make him drinke in pipe (wine,
First come gentlemen. Exit omnes.
Enter Mistresse Ford, with two of her men, and
a great buck busket.
Mis. For. Sirrha, if your M. aske you whither
1362.1You carry this basket, say to the Launderers,
I hope you know how to bestow it?
Ser. I warrant you misteris. Exit seruant.
Mis. Ford
A pleasant Comedie, of
Mis. For. Go get you in. Well sir Iohn,
1362.5I beleeue I shall serue you such a trick,
You shall haue little mind to come againe.
Enter Sir Iohn.
Fal. Haue I caught my heauenlie Iewel?
Why now let me die. I haue liued long inough,
This is the happie houre I haue desired to see,
Now shall I sin in my wish,
I would thy husband were dead.
1393.1Mis. For. Why how then sir Iohn?
Fal. By the Lord, Ide make thee my Ladie.
1395Mis. For Alas sir Iohn, I should be a verie simple
Fal. Goe too, I see how thy eie doth emulate
the Diamond.
And how the arched bent of thy brow
Would become the ship tire, the tire vellet,
1400Or anie Venetian attire, I see it.
Mis. For. A plaine kercher sir Iohn, would fit me(better.
Fal. By the Lord thou art a traitor to saie so:
What made me loue thee? Let that perswade thee
Ther's somewhat extraordinarie in thee: Goe too
1412.1 I loue thee:
Mistris Ford, I cannot cog, I cannot prate, like one
Of these fellowes that smels like Bucklers-berie,
1415In simple time, but I loue thee,
And none but thee.
Mis. For. Sir Iohn, I am afraid you loue misteris (Page.
Fal. I thou mightest as well saie
I loue to walke by the Counter gate,
1420VVhich is as hatefull to me
As the reake of a lime kill.
the merry wives of windsor.
1420.1Enter Mistresse Page.
Mis. Pa. Mistresse Ford, Mis. Ford, where are you?
1434.1Mis. For. O Lord step aside good sir Iohn.
Falstaffe stands behind the aras.
How now Misteris Page whats the matter?
Mis.. Pa. Why your husband woman is cõming,
With halfe Windsor at his heeles,
To looke for a gentleman that he ses
1445Is hid in his house: his wifes sweet hart.
Mis. For. Speak louder. But I hope tis not true
1448.1 Misteris Page.
Mis. Pa. Tis too true woman. Therefore if you
Haue any here, away with him, or your vndone for
1446.1 euer.
Mis. For. Alas mistresse Page, what shall I do?
Here is a gentleman my friend, how shall I do?
Mis. Pa. Gode body woman, do not stand what
1461.1shal I do, and what shall I do. Better any shift, rather
then you shamed. Looke heere, here's a buck-bas-
ket, if hee be a man of any reasonable sise, heele in
Mis. For. Alas I feare he is too big.
1470Fal. Let me see, let me see, Ile in, Ile in,
Follow your friends counsell.
Mis. Pa. Fie sir Iohn is this your loue? Go too. (Aside.
Fal. I loue thee, and none but thee:
1474.1Helpe me to conuey me hence,
1475Ile neuer come here more.
E Sir
A pleasant Comedie, of
1475.1Sir Iohn goes into the basket, they put cloathes ouer him,
the two men carries it away: Foord meetes it, and all
the rest, Page, Doctor, Priest, Slender, Shallow.
Ford. Come pray along, you shall see all.
How now who goes heare? whither goes this?
Whither goes it? set it downe.
Mis. For. Now let it go, you had best meddle with
Ford. Buck, good buck, pray come along,
Maister Page, take my keyes: helpe to search. Good
Sir Hugh pray come along, helpe a little, a little,
Ile shew you all.
Sir Hu. By Ieshu these are iealosies & distemperes.
1501.1Exit omnes.
Mis. Pa. He is in a pittifull taking.
Mis. I wonder what he thought
1510Whẽ my husband bad them set downe the basket.
Mis. Pa. Hang him dishonest slaue, we cannot vse
1515Him bad inough. This is excellent for your
1515.1Husbands iealousie.
Mi. For. Alas poore soule it grieues me at the hart,
But this will be a meanes to make him cease
His iealous fits, if Falstaffes loue increase.
1515.5Mis. Pa. Nay we wil send to Falstaffe once again,
Tis great pittie we should leaue him:
What wiues may be merry, and yet honest too.
Mi. For. Shall we be cõdemnd because we laugh?
Tis old, but true: still sowes eate all the draffe.
1515.10Enter all.
Mis. Pa. Here comes your husband, stand aside.
For. I can find no body within, it may be he lied.
1530Mis. Pa. Did you heare that?
Mis. For.
the merry wives of windsor.
1530.1Mis. For. I, I, peace.
For. Well Ile not let it go so, yet Ile trie further.
S. Hu. By Ieshu if there be any body in the kitchin
Or the cuberts, or the presse, or the buttery,
I am an arrant Iew: Now God plesse me:
1538.1You serue me well, do you not?
Pa. Fie M. Ford you are too blame:
1541.1Mis. Pa. Ifaith tis not well M. Ford to suspect
Her thus without cause.
Doc. No by my trot it be no vell:
For. Wel I pray bear with me, M.Page pardõ me.
I suffer for it, I suffer for it:
1545Sir Hu: You suffer for a bad conscience looke you(now:
1550Ford: Well I pray no more, another time Ile tell
1550.1 you all:
The mean time go dine with me, pardõ me wife,
I am sorie. M. Page pray goe in to dinner,
Another time Ile tell you all.
Pa: Wel let it be so, and to morrow I inuite you all
To my house to dinner: and in the morning weele
1555A birding, I haue an excellent Hauke for the bush.
Ford: Let it be so: Come M. Page, come wife:
I pray you come in all, your welcome, pray come (in.
1552.1Sir Hu: By so kad vdgme, M. Fordes is
Not in his right wittes:
1565Exit omnes:
Enter Sir Iohn Falstaffe.
1705Fal: Bardolfe brew me a pottle sack presently:
Bar: With Egges sir?
Fal: Simply of it selfe, Ile none of these pullets(sperme
In my drinke: goe make haste.
Haue I liued to be carried in a basket
E2 And
A pleasant Comedie, of
and throwne into the Thames like a barow of But-
chers offoll. Well, and I be serued such another
1685tricke, Ile giue them leaue to take out my braines
and butter them, and giue them to a dog for a new-
yeares gift. Sblood, the rogues slided me in with as
little remorse as if they had gone to drowne a blind
bitches puppies in the litter: and they might know
1690by my sise I haue a kind of alacritie in sinking: and
the bottom had bin as deep as hell I should downe.
I had bene drowned, but that the shore was sheluie
and somewhat shallowe: a death that I abhorre.
For you know the water swelles a man: and what a
thing should I haue bene whẽ I had bene swelled?
1694.1By the Lord a mountaine of money. Now is the
Sacke brewed?
Bar. I sir, there's a woman below would speake
with you.
Fal. Bid her come vp. Let me put some Sacke
among this cold water, for my belly is as cold as if I
had swallowed snow-balles for pilles.
1699.1Enter Mistresse Quickly.
Now whats the newes with you?
Quic. I come from misteris Ford forsooth.
1710Fal. Misteris Ford, I haue had Ford inough,
I haue bene throwne into the Ford, my belly is full
Of Ford: she hath tickled mee.
Quic. O Lord sir, she is the sorrowfullest woman
that her seruants mistooke, that euer liued. And sir,
she would desire you of all loues you will meet her
once againe, to morrow sir, betweene ten and ele-
1720uen, and she hopes to make amends for all.
1725Fal. Ten, and eleuen, saiest thou?
Quic. I
the merry wives of windsor.
1725.1Quic. I forsooth.
Fal. Well, tell her Ile meet her. Let her but think
1727.1Of mans frailtie: Let her iudge what man is,
And then thinke of me. And so farwell.
Quic. Youle not faile sir?
Exit mistresse Quickly.
1727.5Fal. I will not faile. Commend me to her.
I wonder I heare not of M. Brooke, I like his
1730Mony well. By the masse here he is.
1730.1Enter Brooke.
For. God saue you sir.
Fal. Welcome good M. Brooke. You come to
know how matters goes.
1735Ford. Thats my comming indeed sir Iohn.
Fal. M. Brooke I will not lie to you sir,
I was there at my appointed time.
For. And how sped you sir?
Fal. Verie ilfauouredly sir.
1740For. Why sir, did she change her determination?
Fal. No M. Brooke, but you shall heare. After we
had kissed and imbraced, and as it were euen amid
the prologue of our incounter, who should come,
but the iealous knaue her husband, and a rabble of
his companions at his heeles, thither prouoked and
instigated by his distemper. And what to do thinke
you? to search for his wiues loue. Euen so, plainly
For. While ye were there?
Fal. Whilst I was there.
1750For. And did he search and could not find you?
Fal. You shall heare sir, as God would haue it,
A litle before comes me one Pages wife,
E3 Giues
A pleasant Comedie, of
Giues her intelligence of her husbands
Approach: and by her inuention, and Fords wiues
Distraction, conueyd me into a buck basket.
1755Ford. A buck basket!
Fal. By the Lord a buck basket, rammed me in
With foule shirts, stokins, greasie napkins,
That M. Brooke, there was a compound of the most
Villanous smel, that euer offended nostrill.
Ile tell you M. Brooke, by the Lord for your sake
I suffered three egregious deaths: First to be
Crammed like a good bilbo, in the circomference
Of a pack, Hilt to point, heele to head: and then to
1780Be stewed in my owne grease like a Dutch dish:
A man of my kidney; by the Lord it was maruell I
Escaped suffication; and in the heat of all this,
To be throwne into Thames like a horshoo hot:
Maister Brooke, thinke of that hissing heate, Maister
Ford. Well sir then my shute is void?
Youle vndertake it no more?
Fal. M. Brooke, Ile be throwne into Etna
1795As I haue bene in the Thames,
Ere I thus leaue her: I haue receiued
Another appointment of meeting,
Between ten and eleuen is the houre.
1800Ford: Why sir, tis almost ten alreadie:
Fal: Is it? why then will I addresse my selfe
For my appointment: M. Brooke come to me soone
At night, and you shall know how I speed,
And the end shall be, you shall enioy her loue:
You shall cuckold Foord: Come to mee soone at
1804.1at night. Exit Falstaffe.
the merry wives of windsor.
For. Is this a dreame? Is it a vision?
Maister Ford, maister Ford, awake maister Ford,
There is a hole made in your best coat M. Ford,
1809.1And a man shall not only endure this wrong,
But shall stand vnder the taunt of names,
Lucifer is a good name, Barbason good : good
Diuels names: But cuckold, wittold, godeso
1809.5The diuel himselfe hath not such a name:
And they may hang hats here, and napkins here
Vpon my hornes: Well Ile home, I ferit him,
1815And vnlesse the diuel himselfe should aide him,
Ile search vnpossible places: Ile about it,
1816.1Least I repent too late:
1820Exit omnes.
Enter M. Fenton, Page, and mistresse
1567.1Fen: Tell me sweet Nan, how doest thou yet (resolue,
Shall foolish Slender haue thee to his wife?
Or one as wise as he, the learned Doctor?
Shall such as they enioy thy maiden hart?
1567.5Thou knowst that I haue alwaies loued thee deare,
And thou hast oft times swore the like to me.
An: Good M. Fenton, you may assure your selfe
My hart is setled vpon none but you,
Tis as my father and mother please:
1567.10Get their consent, you quickly shall haue mine.
Fen: Thy father thinks I loue thee for his wealth,
Tho I must needs confesse at first that drew me,
But since thy vertues wiped that trash away,
I loue thee Nan, and so deare is it set,
That whilst I liue, I nere shall thee forget.
Quic: Godes
A pleasant Comedie, of
Godes pitie here comes her father.
1633.1Enter M. Page his wife, M. Shallow, and Slender.
1635Pa. M. Fenton I pray what make you here?
1640You know my answere sir, shees not for you:
Knowing my vow, to blame to vse me thus.
Fen. But heare me speake sir.
1641.1Pa. Pray sir get you gon: Come hither daughter,
Sonne Slender let me speak with you. (they whisper.
1645Quic. Speake to Misteris Page.
Fen. Pray misteris Page let me haue your cõsent.
1646.1Mis.Pa. Ifaith M. Fentõ tis as my husband please.
For my part Ile neither hinder you, nor further(you.
Quic. How say you this was my doings?
1664.1I bid you speake to misteris Page.
Fen. Here nurse, theres a brace of angels to drink,
Worke what thou canst for me, farwell. (Exit Fen.(Slēder
1664.5Quic. By my troth so I will, good hart.
Pa. Come wife, you an I will in, weele leaue M.
And my daughter to talke together. M. Shallow,
You may stay sir if you please.
Exit Page and his wife.
Shal. Mary I thanke you for that:
1620To her cousin, to her.
1620.1Slen. Ifaith I know not what to say.
An. Now M. Slender, whats your will?
Slen. Godeso theres a Iest indeed: why misteris (An,
1625I neuer made wil yet: I thāk God I am wise inough(for that.
Shal. Fie cusse fie, thou art not right,
1605O thou hadst a father.
Slen. I had a father misteris Anne, good vncle
Tell the Iest how my father stole the goose out of
The henloft. All this is nought, harke you mistresse
the merry wives of windsor.
1615Shal. He will make you ioynter of three hun-
dred pound a yeare, he shall make you a Gentle-
1610Slend. I be God that I vill, come cut and long
taile, as good as any is in Glostershire, vnder the de-
1610.1gree of a Squire.
1600An. O God how many grosse faults are hid,
And couered in three hundred pound a yeare?
1601.1Well M. Slender, within a day or two Ile tell you
Slend. I thanke you good misteris Anne, vncle I
shall haue her.
1601.5Quic. M. Shallow, M. Page would pray you to
come you, and you M. Slender, and you mistris An.
Slend. Well Nurse, if youle speake for me,
Ile giue you more then Ile talke of.
Exit omnes but Quickly.
Quic. Indeed I will, Ile speake what I can for you,
1675But specially for M. Fenton:
1675.1But specially of all for my Maister.
And indeed I will do what I can for them all three.
Enter misteris Ford and her two men.
1899.1Mis. For. Do you heare? when your M. comes
take vp this basket as you did before, and if your M.
bid you set it downe, obey hiM.
Ser. I will forsooth.
1899.5Enter Syr Iohn.
Mis. For. Syr Iohn welcome.
1905Fal. What are you sure of your husband now?
Mis. For. He is gone a birding sir Iohn, and I hope
1907.1will not come home yet.
F Enter
A pleasant Comedie, of
Enter mistresse Page.
Gods body here is misteris Page,
Step behind the arras good sir Iohn.
1909.1He steps behind the arras.
Mis. Pa. Misteris Ford, why woman your husband
is in his old vaine againe, hees comming to search
for your sweet heart, but I am glad he is not here.
1935Mis. For. O God misteris Page the knight is here,
1935.1What shall I do?
Mis. Pa. Why then you'r vndone woman, vnles
you make some meanes to shift him away.
Mis. For. Alas I know no meanes, vnlesse
1940we put him in the basket againe.
Fal. No Ile come no more in the basket,
Ile creep vp into the chimney.
Mis. For. There they vse to discharge their Fow-(ling peeces.
Fal. Why then Ile goe out of doores.
1956.1Mi.Pa. Then your vndone, your but a dead man.
Fal. For Gods sake deuise any extremitie,
Rather then a mischiefe.
1964.1Mis. Pa. Alas I know not what meanes to make,
1960If there were any womans apparell would fit him,
He might put on a gowne and a mufler,
And so escape.
1962.1Mi. For. Thats wel remembred, my maids Aunt
1965Gillian of Brainford, hath a gowne aboue.
Mis. Pa. And she is altogether as fat as he.
Mis. For. I that will serue him of my word.
Mis. Pa. Come goe with me sir Iohn, Ile helpe to
dresse you.
1972.1Fal. Come for God sake, any thing.
Exit Mis. Page, & Sir Iohn.
the merry wives of windsor.
Enter M. Ford, Page, Priest, Shallow, the two men
carries the basket, and Ford meets it.
1972.5For. Come along I pray, you shal know the cause,
How now whither goe you? Ha whither go you?
Set downe the basket you ssaue,
You panderly rogue set it downe.
2006.1Mis. For. What is the reason that you vse me (thus:
For. Come hither set downe the basket,
Misteris Ford the modest woman,
Misteris Ford the vertuous woman,
She that hath the iealous foole to her husband,
I mistrust you without cause do I not?
Mis. For. I Gods my record do you. And if
you mistrust me in any ill sort.
Ford. Well sed brazen face, hold it out,
2021.1You youth in a basket, come out here,
Pull out the cloathes, search.
Hu. Ieshu plesse me, will you pull vp your wiues(cloathes?
2026.1Pa. Fie M. Ford you are not to go abroad if you
be in these fits.
Sir Hu. By so kad vdge me, tis verie necessarie
He were put in pethleM.
2030For. M. Page, as I am an honest man M. Page,
There was one conueyd out of my house here ye-'
sterday out of this basket, why may he not be here
2050Mi. For. Come mistris Page, bring the old womã(downe.
For. Old woman, what old woman?
Mi.For. Why my maidens Ant, Gilleã of Brainford.
2055A witch, haue I not forewarned her my house,
Alas we are simple we, we know not what
F2 Is
A pleasant Comedie, of
Is brought to passe vnder the colour of fortune-
Telling. Come downe you witch, come downe.
2058.1Enter Falstaffe disguised like an old woman, and mi-
steris Page with him, Ford beates him, and hee
runnes away.
Away you witch get you gone.
2075Sir Hu. By Ieshu I verily thinke she is a witch (indeed,
I espied vnder her mufler a great beard.
2076.1Ford. Pray come helpe me to search, pray now.
Pa. Come weele go for his minds sake.
2081.1Exit omnes.
Mi. For. By my troth he beat him most extreamly.
2083.1Mi. Pa. I am glad of it, what shall we proceed any
2095Mi. For. No faith, now if you will let vs tell our
2095.1husbands of it. For mine I am sure hath almost fret-
ted himselfe to death.
Mi. Pa. Content, come weele goe tell them all,
And as they agree, so will we proceed. Exit both.
Enter Host and Bardolfe.
Bar. Syr heere be three Gentlemen come from
2110the Duke the Stanger sir, would haue your horse.
Host. The Duke, what Duke? let me speake with
the Gentlemen, do they speake English?
2115Bar. Ile call them to you sir.
Host. No Bardolfe, let them alone, Ile sauce them:
They haue had my house a weeke at command,
I haue turned away my other guesse,
They shall haue my horses Bardolfe,
They must come off, Ile sawce them. Exit omnes.
Enter Ford, Page, their wiues, Shallow, and Slen-
der. Syr Hu.
the merry wives of windsor.
2122.1Ford. Well wife, heere take my hand, vpon my
soule I loue thee dearer then I do my life, and ioy I
hnue so true and constant wife, my iealousie shall
neuer more offend thee.
2122.5Mi. For. Sir I am glad, & that which I haue done,
Was nothing else but mirth and modestie.
Pa. I misteris Ford, Falstaffe hath all the griefe,
And in this knauerie my wife was the chiefe.
Mi. Pa. No knauery husband, it was honest mirth.
2122.10Hu. Indeed it was good pastimes & merriments.
Mis. For. But sweete heart shall wee leaue olde
Falstaffe so?
Mis. Pa. O by no meanes, send to him againe.
Pa. I do not thinke heele come being so much
For. Let me alone, Ile to him once againe like
Brooke, and know his mind whether heele come
or not.
Pa. There must be some plot laide, or heele not(come.
Mis. Pa. Let vs alone for that. Heare my deuice.
2150Oft haue you heard since Horne the hunter dyed,
2150.1That women to affright their litle children,
Ses that he walkes in shape of a great stagge.
Now for that Falstaffe hath bene so deceiued,
As that he dares not venture to the house,
2150.5Weele send him word to meet vs in the field,
Disguised like Horne, with huge horns on his head,
The houre shalbe iust betweene twelue and one,
And at that time we will meet him both:
Then would I haue you present there at hand,
With litle boyes disguised and dressed like Fayries,
2172.1For to affright fat Falstaffe in the woods.
F3 And
A pleasant Comedie, of
And then to make a period to the Iest,
Tell Falstaffe all, I thinke this will do best.
2170Pa. Tis excellent, and my daughter Anne,
2170.1Shall like a litle Fayrie be disguised.
Mis. Pa. And in that Maske Ile make the Doctor
steale my daughter An, & ere my husband knowes
it, to carrie her to Church, and marrie her.
2170.5Mis. For. But who will buy the silkes to tyre the(boyes?
Pa. That will I do, and in a robe of white
2200Ile cloath my daughter, and aduertife Slender
To know her by that signe, and steale her thence,
2201.1And vnknowne to my wife, shall marrie her.
Hu. So kad vdge me the deuises is excellent.
I will also be there, and be like a Iackanapes,
2192.1And pinch him most cruelly for his lecheries.
Mis. Pa. Why then we are reuenged sufficiently.
First he was carried and throwne in the Thames,
Next beaten well, I am sure youle witnes that.
2192.5Mi. For. Ile lay my life this makes him nothing fat.
Pa. Well lets about this stratagem, I long
To see deceit deceiued, and wrong haue wrong.
For, Well send to Falstaffe, and if he come thither,
Twill make vs smile and laugh one moneth togi-
2192.10ther. Exit omnes.
Enter Host and Simple.
2220Host. What would thou haue boore, what thick-(skin?
Speake, breath, discus, short, quick, briefe, snap.
Sim. Sir, I am sent frõ my M. to sir Iohn Falstaffe.
2225Host. Sir Iohn, theres his Castle, his standing bed,
his trundle bed, his chamber is painted about with
the story of the prodigall, fresh and new, go knock,
heele speak like an Antripophiginian to thee:
the merry wives of windsor.
Knock I say.
2230Sim. Sir I should speak with an old woman that
went vp into his chamber.
Host. An old woman, the knight may be robbed,
Ile call bully knight, bully sir Iohn. Speake from thy
2235Lungs military: it is thine host, thy Ephesian calls.
Fal. Now mine Host.
Host. Here is a Bohemian tarter bully, tarries the
comming downe of the fat woman: Let her descēd
2240bully, let her descend, my chambers are honorable,
pah priuasie, fie.
Fal. Indeed mine host there was afat woman with(me,
But she is gone.
2243.1Enter Sir Iohn.
Sim. Pray sir was it not the wise woman of Brain-
2245 ford?
Fal. Marry was it Musselshell, what would you?
Sim. Marry sir my maister Slender sent me to her,
To know whether one Nim that hath his chaine,
Cousoned him of it, or no.
Fal. I talked with the woman about it.
Sim. And I pray sir what ses she?
Fal. Marry she ses the very same man that
2255Beguiled maister Slender of his chaine,
Cousoned him of it.
2270Sim. May I be bolde to tell my maister so sir?
Fal. I tike, who more bolde.
Sim. I thanke you sir, I shall make my maister a
glad man at these tydings, God be with you sir.
Host. Thou art clarkly sir Iohn, thou art clarkly,
2275Was there a wise woman with thee?
Fal. Marry was there mine host, one that taught
A pleasant Comedie, of
Me more wit then I learned this 7. yeare,
And I paid nothing for it,
But was paid for my learning.
2278.1Enter Bardolfe.
2280Bar. O Lord sir cousonage, plaine cousonage.
Host. Why man, where be my horses? where be
2281.1the Germanes?
Bar. Rid away with your horses:
After I came beyond Maidenhead,
They flung me in a slow of myre, & away they ran.
2284.1Enter Doctor.
Doc. Where be my Host de gartyre?
2300Host. O here sir in perplexitie.
Doc. I cannot tell vad be dad,
But begar I will tell you van ting,
Dear be a Garmaine Duke come to de Court,
2303.1Has cosened all de host of Branford,
And Redding: begar I tell you for good will,
Ha, ha, mine Host, am I euen met you? Exit.
Enter Sir Hugh.
2290Sir Hu. Where is mine Host of the gartyr?
Now my Host, I would desire you looke you now,
2292.1To haue a care of your entertainments,
For there is three sorts of cosen garmombles,
Is cosen all the Host of Maidenhead & Readings,
2295 Now you are an honest man, and a scuruy beg-
2295.1 gerly lowsie knaue beside:
And can point wrong places,
I tell you for good will, grate why mine Host. Exit,
Host. I am cosened Hugh, and coy Bardolfe,
Sweet knight assist me, I am cosened. Exit.
Fal. Would all the worell were cosened for me,
the merry wives of windsor.
2310For I am cousoned and beaten too.
Well, I neuer prospered since I forswore
My selfe at Primero: and my winde
Were but long inough to say my prayers,
Ide repent, now from whence come you?
2318.1Enter Mistresse Quickly.
2320Quic. From the two parties forsooth.
Fal. The diuell take the one partie,
And his dam the other,
And theyle be both bestowed.
I haue endured more for their sakes,
Then man is able to endure.
2325Quic. O Lord sir, they are the sorowfulst creatures
That euer liued: specially mistresse Ford,
Her husband hath beaten her that she is all
Blacke and blew poore soule.
Fal. What tellest me of blacke and blew,
I haue bene beaten all the colours in the Rainbow,
And in my escape like to a bene apprehended
For a witch of Brainford, and set in the stockes.
Quic. Well sir, she is a sorrowfull woman,
And I hope when you heare my errant,
Youle be perswaded to the contrarie.
Fal. Come goe with me into my chamber, Ile
heare thee. Exit omnes.
Enter Host and Fenton.
2345Host. Speake not to me sir, my mind is heauie,
I haue had a great losse.
Fen. Yet heare me, and as I am a gentleman,
Ile giue you a hundred pound toward your losse.
2350Host. Well sir Ile heare you, and at least keep your
Fen. Thẽ thus my host. Tis not vnknown to you,
G1 The
A pleasant Comedie, of
The feruent loue I beare to young Anne Page,
And mutally her loue againe to mee:
But her father still against her choise,
Doth seeke to marrie her to foolish Slender,
And in a robe of white this night disguised,
2360Wherein fat Falstaffe had a mightie scare,
2380Must Slender take her and carrie her to Catlen,
2380.1And there vnknowne to any, marrie her.
Now her mother still against that match,
And firme for Doctor Cayus, in a robe of red
By her deuice, the Doctor must steale her thence,
And she hath giuen consent to goe with him.
Host. Now which means she to deceiue, father or
Fen. Both my good Host, to go along with me.
Now here it rests, that you would procure a priest,
And tarrie readie at the appointment place,
2395To giue our harts vnited matrimonie.
2395.1Host. But how will you come to steale her from(among thẽ
Fen. That hath sweet Nan and I agreed vpon,
And by a robe of white, the which she weares,
With ribones pendant flaring bout her head,
2395.5I shalbe sure to know her, and conuey her thence,
And bring her where the priest abides our cõming,
And by thy furtherance there be married.
Host. Well, husband your deuice, Ile to the Vicar,
Bring you the maide, you shall not lacke a Priest.
Fen. So shall I euermore be bound vnto thee.
Besides Ile alwaies be thy faithfull friend.
Exit omnes.
Enter sir Iohn with a Bucks head vpon him.
Fal. This is the third time, well Ile venter,
They say there is good luck in old numbers,
Ioue transformed himselfe into a bull,
the merry wives of windsor.
And I am here a Stag, and I thinke the fattest
In all Windsor forrest: well I stand here
2494.1 For Horne the hunter, waiting my Does comming.
Enter mistris Page, and mistris Ford.
Mis. Pa. Sir Iohn, where are you?
Fal. Art thou come my doe? what and thou too?
2499.1Welcome Ladies.
Mi. For. I I sir Iohn, I see you will not faile,
Therefore you deserue far better then our loues,
But it grieues me for your late crosses.
2499.5Fal. This makes amends for all.
2505Come diuide me betweene you, each a hanch,
For my horns Ile bequeath thẽ to your husbands,
Do I speake like Horne the hunter, ha?
Mis. Pa. God forgiue me, what noise is this?
2511.1There is a noise of hornes, the two women run away.
Enter sir Hugh like a Satyre, and boyes drest like Fayries,
mistresse Quickly, like the Queene of Fayries: they
sing a song about him, and afterward speake.
Quic: You Fayries that do haunt these shady (groues,
2519.1Looke round about the wood if you can espie
A mortall that doth haunt our sacred round:
If such a one you can espie, giue him his due,
And leaue not till you pinch him blacke and blew:
2519.5Giue them their charge Puck ere they part away.
Sir Hu. Come hither Peane, go to the countrie
And when you finde a slut that lies a sleepe,
And all her dishes foule, and roome vnswept,
2519.10With your long nailes pinch her till she crie,
G2 And
A pleasant Comedie, of
And sweare to mend her sluttish huswiferie.
Fai. I warrant you I will performe your will.
Hu. Where is Pead? go you & see where Brokers(sleep,
2531.1And Foxe-eyed Seriants with their mase,
Goe laie the Proctors in the street,
And pinch the lowsie Seriants face:
Spare none of these when they are a bed,
2531.5But such whose nose lookes plew and red.
Quic. Away begon, his mind fulfill,
And looke that none of you stand still.
Some do that thing, some do this,
All do something, none amis.
Hir Hu. I smell a man of middle earth.
Fal. God blesse me from that wealch Fairie.
2563.1Quic. Looke euery one about this round,
And if that any here be found,
For his presumption in this place,
Spare neither legge, arme, head, nor face.
2563.5Sir Hu. See I haue spied one by good luck,
His bodie man, his head a buck.
Fal. God send me good fortune now, and I care(not.
Quic. Go strait, and do as I commaund,
And take a Taper in your hand,
And set it to his fingers endes,
2567.1And if you see it him offends,
And that he starteth at the flame,
2568.1Then is he mortall, know his name:
If with an F. it doth begin,
2570Why then be shure he is full of sin.
2570.1About it then, and know the truth,
Of this same metamorphised youth.
Sir Hu. Giue me the Tapers, I will try
And if that he loue venery.
the merry wives of windsor.
2570.5They put the Tapers to his fingers, and he starts.
Sir Hu. It is right indeed, he is full of lecheries
2574.1 and iniquitie.
Quic. A little distant from him stand,
And euery one take hand in hand,
And compasse him within a ring,
2574.5First pinch him well, and after sing.
Here they pinch him, and sing about him, & the Doc-
tor comes one way & steales away a boy in red. And
Slender another way he takes a boy in greene: And
Fenton steales misteris Anne, being in white. And
2574.10a noyse of hunting is made within: and all the Fai-
ries runne away. Falstaffe pulles of his bucks head,
and rises vp. And enters M. Page, M. Ford, and
their wiues, M. Shallow, Sir Hugh.
Fal. Horne the hunter quoth you: am I a ghost?
2574.15Sblood the Fairies hath made a ghost of me:
What hunting at this time at night?
Ile lay my life the mad Prince of Wales
Is stealing his fathers Deare.
How now who haue
we here, what is all Windsor stirring? Are you there?
2574.20Shal. God saue you sir Iohn Falstaffe.
Sir Hu. God plesse you sir Iohn, God plesse you.
Pa. Why how now sir Iohn, what a pair of horns
in your hand?
Ford. Those hornes he ment to place vpon my(head,
2595And M. Brooke and he should be the men:
2595.1Why how now sir Iohn, why are you thus amazed?
We know the Fairies man that pinched you so,
Your throwing in the Thames, your beating well,
G3 And
A pleasant Comedie, of
And whats to come sir Iohn, that can we tell.
2595.5Mi. Pa. Sir Iohn tis thus, your dishonest meanes
To call our credits into question,
Did make vs vndertake to our best,
To turne your leaud lust to a merry Iest.
Fal. Iest, tis well, haue I liued to these yeares
2595.10To be gulled now, now to be ridden?
Why then these were not Fairies?
Mis. Pa. No sir Iohn but boyes.
Fal. By the Lord I was twice or thrise in the (mind
They were not, and yet the grosnesse
Of the fopperie perswaded me they were.
2608.1Well, and the fine wits of the Court heare this,
Thayle so whip me with their keene Iests,
That thayle melt me out like tallow,
Drop by drop out of my grease. Boyes!
Sir Hu. I trust me boyes Sir Iohn: and I was
Also a Fairie that did helpe to pinch you.
2614.1Fal. I, tis well I am your May-pole,
You haue the start of mee,
Am I ridden too with a wealch goate?
With a peece of toasted cheese?
2625Sir Hu. Butter is better then cheese sir Iohn,
You are all butter, butter.
2626.1For. There is a further matter yet sir Iohn,
There's 20. pound you borrowed of M. Brooke Sir (Iohn,
2651.1And it must be paid to M. Ford Sir Iohn.
Mi. For. Nay husband let that go to make amẽds,
Forgiue that sum, and so weele all be friends.
For. Well here is my hand, all's forgiuen at last.
2651.5Fal. It hath cost me well,
I haue bene well pinched and washed.
the merry wives of windsor.
Enter the Doctor.
Mi. Pa. Now M. Doctor, sonne I hope you are.
Doct. Sonne begar you be de ville voman,
2651.10Begar I tinck to marry metres An, and begar
Tis a whorson garson Iack boy.
Mis. Pa. How a boy?
Doct. I begar a boy.
Pa. Nay be not angry wife, Ile tell thee true,
2651.15It was my plot to deceiue thee so:
And by this time your daughter's married
To M. Slender, and see where he comes.
Enter Slender.
Now sonne Slender,
2651.20Where's your bride?
Slen. Bride, by Gods lyd I thinke theres neuer a
man in the worell hath that crosse fortune that I
haue: begod I could cry for verie anger.
Pa. Why whats the matter sonne Slender?
2651.25Slen. Sonne, nay by God I am none of your son.
Pa. No, why so?
Slen. Why so God saue me, tis a boy that I haue(married.
Pa. How a boy? why did you mistake the word?
Slen. No neither, for I came to her in red as you
2651.30bad me, and I cried mum, and hee cried budget, so
well as euer you heard, and I haue married him.
Sir Hu. Ieshu M. Slender, cannot you see but marrie (boyes?
Pa. O I am vext at hart, what shal I do?
Enter Fenton and Anne.
2651.35Mis. Pa. Here comes the man that hath deceiued(vs all:
How now daughter, where haue you bin?
An. At Curch forsooth.
Pa. At Church, what haue you done there?
A pleasaunt Comedie, of
Fen. Married to me, nay sir neuer storme,
2651.40Tis done sir now, and cannot be vndone.
Ford: I faith M. Page neuer chafe your selfe,
She hath made her choise wheras her hart was fixt,
Then tis in vaine for you to storme or fret.
Fal. I am glad yet that your arrow hath glanced
2717.1Mi. For. Come mistris Page, Ile be bold with you,
Tis pitie to part loue that is so true.
Mis. Pa. Altho that I haue missed in my intent,
Yet I am glad my husbands match was crossed,
2717.5Here M. Fenton, take her, and God giue thee ioy.
Sir Hu: Come M. Page, you must needs agree.
Fo. I yfaith sir come, you see your wife is wel plea- (sed:
Pa. I cannot tel, and yet my hart's well eased,
And yet it doth me good the Doctor missed.
2717.10Come hither Fenton, and come hither daughter,
Go too you might haue stai'd for my good will,
But since your choise is made of one you loue,
Here take her Fenton, & both happie proue.
Sir Hu. I wil also dance & eat plums at your wed- (dings.
2717.15Ford. All parties pleased, now let vs in to feast,
And laugh at Slender, and the Doctors ieast.
He hath got the maiden, each of you a boy
To waite vpon you, so God giue you ioy,
And sir Iohn Falstaffe now shal you keep your word,
For Brooke this night shall lye with mistris Ford.
Exit omnes.