Page images

Doctor Caius, I am come to fetch you home. I am sworn of the peace: you have showed yourself a wise physician, and Sir Hugh hath shown himself a wise and patient churchman. You must go with me, Master doctor.

Host. Pardon, guest-justice: a word, Mounsieur Mock-water.

Caius. Mock-vater! vat is dat?


Host. Mock-water, in our English tongue, is valour, bully.

Caius. By gar, den I have as mush mockvater as de Englishman. Scurvy jack-dog priest by gar, me vill cut his ears.

Host. He will clapper-claw thee tightly, bully. Caius. Clapper-de-claw! vat is dat ?

Host. That is, he will make thee amends. Caius. By gar, me do look he shall clapperde-claw me; for, by gar, me vill have it.


Host. And I will provoke him to 't, or let him


Caius. Me tank you for dat.

Host. And moreover, bully,-but first, Master guest, and Master Page, and eke Cavaleiro Slender, go you through the town to Frogmore. Aside to them.

[blocks in formation]


SCENE I-A Field near Frogmore. Enter Sir HUGH EVANS and SIMPLE. Evans. I pray you now, good Master Slender's servingman, and friend Simple by your name, which way have you looked for Master Caius, that calls himself doctor of physic?

Sim. Marry, sir, the pitty-ward, the parkward, every way; old Windsor way, and every way but the town way.

Erans. I most fehemently desire you you will also look that way.

Sim. I will, sir.

Retiring. 10 Erans. Pless my soul! how full of cholers I am, and trempling of mind! I shall be glad if he have deceived me. How melancholies I am! I will knog his urinals about his knave's costard

[blocks in formation]


Shal. How now, Master parson! Good morrow, good Sir Hugh. Keep a gamester from the dice, and a good student from his book, and it is wonderful.



Slen. Aside. Ah, sweet Anne Page!
Page. Save you, good Sir Hugh!

Evans. Pless you from his mercy sake, all of you!

Shal. What, the sword and the word! do you study them both, Master parson ?

Page. And youthful still in your doublet and hose! this raw rheumatic day!

Evans. There is reasons and causes for it.

Page. We are come to you to do a good oflice, Master parson.


Evans. Fery well: what is it?

Page. Yonder is a most reverend gentleman, who, belike having received wrong by some person, is at most odds with his own gravity and patience that ever you saw.

Shal. I have lived fourscore years and upward; I never heard a man of his place, gravity, and learning, so wide of his own respect. Evans. What is he?

Page. I think you know him; Master Doctor Caius, the renowned French physician.

Erans. Got's will, and his passion of my heart! I had as lief you would tell me of a mess of porridge. Page. Why?

Evans. He has no more knowledge in Hibbocrates and Galen,--and he is a knave besides ; a cowardly knave as you would desires to be acquainted withal.


Page. I warrant you, he's the man should fight with him.

[ocr errors]

Slen. Aside. O! sweet Anne Page.

Shal. It appears so by his weapons. Keep them asunder: here comes Doctor Caius.

Enter Host, CAIUS, and RUGBY.

Page. Nay, good Master parson, keep in your weapon.

Shal. So do you, good Master doctor.
Host. Disarm them, and let them question: at home?
let them keep their limbs whole and hack our

Caius. I pray you, let-a me speak a word vit your ear: verefore vill you not meet-a me? Evans. Aside to CAIUS. Pray you, use your patience in good time.

Caius. By gar, you are de coward, de Jack dog, John ape.

Evans. Aside to CAIUS. Pray you, let us not be laughing-stogs to other men's humours; I desire you in friendship, and I will one way or other make you amends. Aloud. I will knog your urinals about your knave's cogscomb for missing your meetings and appointments. 92

Caius. Diable! Jack Rugby; mine host de Jartiere; have I not stay for him to kill him? have I not, at de place I did appoint?

Evans. As I am a Christians soul now, look you, this is the place appointed. I'll be judgment by mine host of the Garter.

Host. Peace, I say! Gallia and Guallia, French and Welsh, soul-curer and body-curer. Caius. Ay, dat is very good: excellent. 101 Host. Peace, I say! hear mine host of the Garter. Am I politic? am I subtle? am I a Machiavel? Shall I lose my doctor? no; he gives me the potions and the motions. Shall I lose my parson, my priest, my Sir Hugh? no; he gives me the proverbs and the noverbs. Give me thy hand, terrestrial; so. Give me thy hand, celestial; so. Boys of art, I have deceived you both; I have directed you to wrong places: your hearts are mighty, your skins are whole, and let burnt sack be the issue. Come, lay their swords to pawn. Follow me, lads of peace; follow, follow, follow. Shal. Trust me, a mad host. Follow, gentlemen, follow.


Mrs. Page. Truly, sir, to see your wife: is she

Ford. Ay; and as idle as she may hang to80gether, for want of company. I think, if your husbands were dead, you two would marry.

Mrs. Page. Be sure of that,-two other husbands.

Ford. Where had you this pretty weathercock? Mrs. Page. I cannot tell what the dickens his name is my husband had him What do you call your knight's name, sirrah? Rob. Sir John Falstaff.


Ford. Sir John Falstaff!

Mrs. Page. He, he; I can never hit on 's name.
There is such a league between my good man and
he! Is your wife at home indeed!
Ford. Indeed she is.

Slen. Aside. O! sweet Anne Page.
Exeunt SHALLOW, SLENDER, PAGE, and Host.
Caius. Ha! do I perceive dat? have you
make-a de sot of us? ha, ha!

Evans. This is well; he has made us his vlouting-stog. I desire you that we may be friends, and let us knog our prains together to be revenge on this same scall, scurvy, cogging companion, the host of the Garter.

Caius. By gar, vit all my heart. He promise to bring me vere is Anne Page: by gar, he deceive me too.

Evans. Well, I will smite his noddles. Pray you, follow. Exeunt. 129

SCENE II-A Street in Windsor.
Enter Mistress PAGE and ROBIN.

Mrs. Page. Nay, keep 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 master's heels?
Rob. I had rather, forsooth, go before you like
a man than follow him like a dwarf.

Mrs. Paje. By your leave, sir: I am sick till I see her. Exeunt Mistress PAGE and ROBIN.

Ford. Has Page any brains? hath he any eyes? hath he any thinking? Sure, they sleep; he hath no use of them. Why, this boy will carry a letter twenty mile, as easy as a cannon will shoot pointblank twelve score. He pieces out his wife's inclination; he gives her folly motion and advantage: and now she's going to my wife, and Falstaff's boy with her. A man may hear this shower sing in the wind: and Falstaff's boy with her! Good plots! They are laid; and our revolted wives share damnation together. Well; I will take him, then torture my wife, pluck the borrowed veil of modesty from the so seeming Mistress Page, divulge Page himself for a secure and wilful Actæon; and to these violent proceedings all my neighbours shall cry aim. Clock strikes. The clock gives me my cue, and my assurance bids me search; there I shall find Falstaff. I shall be rather praised for this than mocked; for it is as positive as the earth is firm that Falstaff is there: I will go.


Page, Shal., etc. Well met, Master Ford.
Ford. Trust me, a good knot. I have good
cheer at home, and I pray you all go with me.

Shal. I must excuse myself, Master Ford.
Slen. And so must I, sir: we have appointed
to dine with Mistress Anne, and I would not
break with her for more money than I'll speak of.

Shal. We have lingered about a match between Anne Page and my cousin Slender, and this day we shall have our answer.


Slen. I hope I have your good will, father Page. Page. You have, Master Slender; I stand wholly for you: but my wife, Master doctor, is for you altogether.

Caius. Ay, by gar; and de maid is love-a me: my nursh-a Quickly tell me so mush.

Host. What say you to young Master Fenton? he capers, he dances, he has eyes of youth, he writes verses, he speaks holiday, he smells April and May: he will carry 't, he will carry 't; 'tis in his buttons; he will carry 't.


Mrs. Page. O! you are a flattering boy: now I see you'll be a courtier.

Page. Not by my consent, I promise you. The gentleman is of no having: he kept company with the wild prince and Poins; he is of too high a region; he knows too much. No, he shall

Enter FORD.

Ford. Well met, Mistress Page. Whither go 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 have waits on my consent, and my consent goes not that way.

Ford. I beseech you heartily, some of you go home with me to dinner: besides your cheer, you shall have sport; I will show you a monster. Master doctor, you shall go; so shall you, Master Page; and you, Sir Hugh.


Shal. Well, fare you well: we shall have the freer wooing at Master Page's.

Exeunt SHALLOW and SLENDER. Caius. Go home, John Rugby; I come anon. Exit RUGBY. Host. Farewell, my hearts. I will to my honest knight Falstaff, and drink canary with him.

Exit. Ford. Aside. I think I shall drink in pipe-wine first with him; I'll make him dance. Will you go, gentles?


All. Have with you to see this monster.


SCENE III. A Room in FORD'S House. Enter Mistress FORD and Mistress PAGE. Mrs. Ford. What, John! what, Robert! Mrs. Page. Quickly, quickly! Is the buck


Mrs. Ford. I warrant. What, Robin, I say!

[ocr errors]
[blocks in formation]

Rob. Ay, I'll be sworn. My master knows not of your being here and hath threatened to put me into everlasting liberty if I tell you of it, for he swears he 'll turn me away. 32

Mrs. Page. Thou 'rt a good boy; this secrecy of thine shall be a tailor to thee and shall make thee a new doublet and hose. I'll go hide me. Mrs. Ford. Do so. Go tell thy master I am alone. Exit ROBIN. Mistress Page, remember you your cue. Mrs. Page. I warrant thee: if I do not act it, hiss me.


Exit. 40 Mrs. Ford. Go to, then we'll use this unwholesome humidity, this gross watery pumpion; we'll teach him to know turtles from jays,

[blocks in formation]
[blocks in formation]

woman, with all the officers in Windsor, to search for a gentleman that he says is here now in the house by your consent, to take an ill advantage of his absence. You are undone. 114

Mrs. Ford. 'Tis not so, I hope.

Mrs. Page. Pray heaven it be not so, that you have such a man here! but 'tis most certain your husband's coming, with half Windsor at his heels, to search for such a one: I come before to tell you. If you know yourself clear,


am glad of it; but if you have a friend here, convey, convey him out. Be not amazed; call all your senses to you: defend your reputation, or bid farewell to your good life for ever. 124

Mrs. Ford. What shall I do? There is a gentleman, my dear friend; and I fear not mine own shame so much as his peril: I had rather than a thousand pound he were out of the house.

Mrs. Page. For shame! never stand 'you had rather,' and 'you had rather': your husband's here at hand; bethink you of some conveyance: in the house you cannot hide him. O! how have you deceived me. Look, here is a basket: if he be of any reasonable stature, he may creep in here; and throw foul linen upon him, as if it were going to bucking: or, it is whiting-time, send him by your two men to Datchet-mead.

Mrs. Ford. He's too big to go in there. What shall I do?


[blocks in formation]

Page. Good Master Ford, be contented: you wrong yourself too much.

Ford. True, Master Page. Up, gentlemen; you shall see sport anon: follow me, gentlemen.

Ford. Pray you, come near: if I suspect without cause, why then make sport at me, then let me be your jest; I deserve it. How now! whither bear you this?

Serv. To the laundress, forsooth.

Mrs. Ford. Why, what have you to do whither they bear it? You were best meddle with buckwashing. 162

Ford. Buck! I would I could wash myself of the buck! Buck, buck, buck! Ay, buck; I warrant you, buck, and of the season too, it shall appear. Exeunt Servants with the basket. Gentlemen, I have dreamed to-night: I'll tell you my dream. Here, here, here be my keys: ascend my chambers; search, seek, find out: I'll warrant we'll unkennel the fox. Let me stop this way first: Locking the door. so, now uncape. 172

Exit. Frans. This is fery fantastical humours and jealousies.


Caius. By gar, 'tis no de fashion of France: it is not jealous in France. Page. Na follow him, gentlemen: see the issue of his search.

Exeunt PAGE, CAIUS, and EVANS. Mrs. Page. Is there not a double excellency in this?

[blocks in formation]

Mrs. Page. I will lay a plot to try that; and we will yet have more tricks with Falstaff: his dissolute disease will scarce obey this medicine. 200

Mrs. Ford. Shall we send that foolish carrion, Mistress Quickly, to him, and excuse his throwing into the water; and give him another hope, to betray him to another punishment?

Mrs. Page. We'll do it: let him be sent for to-morrow, eight o'clock, to have amends.


Ford. I cannot find him: may be the knave bragged of that he could not compass. Mrs. Page. Heard you that?

Mrs. Ford. You use me well, Master Ford, do you?


Ford. Ay, I do so.

Mrs. Ford. Heaven make you better than your thoughts!

rd. Amen!

Mrs. Page. You do yourself mighty wrong, Master Ford.

Ford. Ay, ay; I must bear it.

Evans. If there pe any pody in the house, and in the chambers, and in the coffers, and in the presses, heaven forgive my sins at the day of judgment !


Caius. By gar, nor I too, dere is no bodies. Page. Fie, fie, Master Ford! are you not ashamed? What spirit, what devil suggests this imagination? I would not ha' your distemper in this kind for the wealth of Windsor Castle.

[blocks in formation]
[blocks in formation]

SCENE IV. A Room in PAGE'S House.

Fent. I see I cannot get thy father's love;
Therefore no more turn me to him, sweet Nan.
Anne. Alas! how then?
Why, thou must be thyself.
He doth object I am too great of birth,
And that my state being gall'd with my expense,
I seek to heal it only by his wealth.
Besides these, other bars he lays before me,
My riots past, my wild societies;
And tells me 'tis a thing impossible

I should love thee but as a property.
Anne. May be he tells you true.


[blocks in formation]

Anne. I mean, Master Slender, what would you with me?

Slen. Truly, for mine own part, I would little or nothing with you. Your father and my uncle have made motions: if it be my luck, so; if not, happy man be his dole! They can tell you how things go better than I can: you may ask your father; here he comes.

Enter PAGE and Mistress PAGE. Page. Now, Master Slender! love him, daughter Anne.


Pent. No, heaven so speed me in my time to Why, how now! what does Master Fenton here ? come!

[blocks in formation]

You wrong me, sir, thus still to haunt my house:
I told you, sir, my daughter is dispos'd of.
Fent. Nay, Master Page, be not impatient.
Mrs. Page. Good Master Fenton, come not to
my child.

Page. She is no match for you.
Fent. Sir, will you hear me?

No, good Master Fenton.
Come, Master Shallow; come, son Slender, in.
Knowing my mind, you wrong me, Master Fenton.
Quick. Speak to Mistress Page.
Fent. Good Mistress Page, for that I love your


In such a righteous fashion as I do,
Perforce, against all checks, rebukes and manners,
I must advance the colours of my love
And not retire: let me have your good will.
Anne. Good mother, do not marry me to yond

Mrs. Page. I mean it not; I seek you a better husband.

Quick. That's my master, Master doctor.

Anne. Alas! I had rather be set quick i' the earth,

And bowl'd to death with turnips.

[ocr errors]

Mrs. Page. Come, trouble not yourself. Good
Master Fenton,

I will not be your friend nor enemy:
My daughter will I question how she loves you,
And as I find her, so am I affected.
Till then, farewell, sir: she must needs go in ;
Her father will be angry.

Fent. Farewell, gentle mistress. Farewell, Nan. Exeunt Mistress PAGE and ANNE. Quick. This is my doing, now. 'Nay,' said I, 'will you cast away your child on a fool, and a

« PreviousContinue »