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contrary places: for, believe me, I hear, the parson is no jester. Hark, I will tell you what our sport shall be.

Host. Hast thou no suit against my knight, my guest-cavalier?

Ford. None, I protest: but I'll give you a pottle of burnt sack to give me recourse to him, and tell him, my name is Brook; only for a jest.

Host. My hand, bully: thou shalt have egress and regress; said I well? and thy name shall be Brook: It is a merry knight.-Will you go on, hearts?

Shal. Have with you, mine host.

Page. I have heard, the Frenchman hath good skill in his rapier.

Shal. Tut, sir, I could have told you more: In these times you stand on distance, your passes, stoccadoes, and I know not what: 'tis the heart, master Page; 'tis here, 'tis here. I have seen the time, with my long sword, I would have made you four tall fellows skip like rats.

Host. Here, boys, here, here! shall we wag? Page. Have with you :-I had rather hear them scold than fight.

[Exeunt Host, Shallow, and Page. Ford. Though Page be a secure fool, and stands so firmly on his wife's frailty, yet I cannot put off my opinion so easily: She was in his company at Page's house; and, what they made2 there, I know not. Well, I will look further into't: and I have a disguise to sound Falstaff: If I find her honest, I lose not my labour; if she be otherwise, 'tis labour well bestowed. [Exit.

SCENE II-A Room in the Garter Inn. Enter Falstaff and Pistol.

Fal. I will not lend thee a penny.

(1) Stout, bold.

(2) Did.

Pist. Why, then the world's mine oyster, Which I with sword will open.—

I will retort the sum in equipage.1

you

Fal. Not a penny. I have been content, sir, you should lay my countenance to pawn: I have grated upon my good friends for three reprieves for and your coach-fellow2 Nym; or else you had looked through the grate like a geminy of baboons. I am damned in hell, for swearing to gentlemen my friends, you were good soldiers, and tall fellows: and when mistress Bridget lost the handle of her fan, I took't upon my honour, thou hadst it not.

Pist. Didst thou not share? hadst thou not fifteen pence?

Fal. Reason, you rogue, reason: Think'st thou, I'll endanger my soul gratis? At a word, hang no more about me, I am no gibbet for you :-go.-A short knife and a throng :3-to your manor of Pickthatch,4 go.-You'll not bear a letter for me, you rogue!-you stand upon your honour!--Why, thou unconfinable baseness, it is as much as I can do, to keep the terms of my honour precise. I, I, I myself sometimes, leaving the fear of heaven on the left hand, and hiding mine honour in my necessity, am fain to shuffle, to hedge, and to lurch; and yet you, rogue, will ensconces your rags, your cat-amountain looks, your red-lattice phrases, and your bold-beating oaths, under the shelter of your honour! You will not do it, you?

Pist. I do relent; What would'st thou more of man?

Enter Robin.

Rob. Sir, here's a woman would speak with you.

(1) Pay you again in stolen goods.

Draws along with you.

(3) To cut purses in a crowd.

(4) Pickt-hatch was in Clerkenwell. (5) Protect. Ale-house.

Fal. Let her approach.

Enter Mistress Quickly.

Quick. Give your worship good-morrow.
Fal. Good-morrow, good wife.

Quick. Not so, an't please your worship.
Fal. Good maid, then.

Quick. I'll be sworn; as my mother was, the first hour I was born.

Fal. I do believe the swearer: What with me? Quick. Shall I vouchsafe your worship a word or two?

Fal. Two thousand, fair woman; and I'll vouch. safe thee the hearing.

Quick. There is one mistress Ford, sir ;-I pray, come a little nearer this ways:-I myself dwell with master doctor Caius.

Fal. Well, on: Mistress Ford, you say,——— Quick. Your worship says very true: I pray your worship, come a little nearer this ways.

Fal. I warrant thee, nobody hears;-mine own people, mine own people.

Quick. Are they so? Heaven bless them, and make them his servants!

Fal. Well: mistress Ford;-what of her? Quick. Why, sir, she's a good creature. Lord, lord! your worship's a wanton. Well, heaven forgive you, and all of us, I pray y!

Fal. Mistress Ford-come, mistress Ford.

Quick. Marry, this is the short and the long of it; you have brought her into such a canaries, as 'tis wonderful. The best courtier of them all, when the court lay at Windsor, could never have brought her to such a canary. Yet there has been knights, and lords, and gentlemen, with their coaches; Í warrant you, coach after coach, letter after letter, gift after gift; smelling so sweetly (all musk,) and so rushling, I warrant you, in silk and gold; and

(1) A mistake of Mrs. Quickly's for quandary.

in such alligant terms; and in such wine and sugar of the best, and the fairest, that would have won any woman's heart; and, I warrant you, they could never get an eye-wink of her.-I had myself twenty angels given me this morning: but I defy all angels (in any such sort, as they say,) but in the way of honesty:-and, I warrant you, they could never get her so much as sip on a cup with the proudest of them all and yet there has been earls, nay, which is more, pensioners; but, I warrant you, all is one with her.

:

Fal. But what says she to me? be brief, my good she Mercury.

Quick. Marry, she hath received your letter; for the which she thanks you a thousand times; and she gives you to notify, that her husband will be absence from his house between ten and eleven? Fal. Ten and eleven?

Quick. Ay, forsooth; and then you may come and see the picture, she says, that you wot of;-— master Ford, her husband, will be from home. Alas! the sweet woman leads an ill life with him; he's a very jealousy man; she leads a very frampold2 life with him, good heart.

Fal. Ten and eleven? Woman, commend me to her; I will not fail her.

Quick. Why, you say well: But I have another messenger to your worship: Mistress Page hath her hearty commendations to you too ;-and let me tell you in your ear, she's as fartuous a civil modest wife, and one (I tell you) that will not miss your morning nor evening prayer, as any is in Windsor, whoe'er be the other: and she bade me tell your worship, that her husband is seldom from home; but, she hopes, there will come a tine. I never knew a woman so dote upon a man: surely, I think you have charms, la; yes, in truth.

Fal. Not I, I assure thee; setting the attraction (2) Fretful, peevish.

(1) Know.

of my good parts aside, I have no other charms. Quick. Blessing on your heart for't!

Fal. But, I pray thee, tell me this: has Ford's wife, and Page's wife, acquainted each other how they love me?

Quick. That were a jest, indeed!-they have not so little grace, I hope :-that were a trick, indeed! But mistress Page would desire you to send her your little page, of all loves;1 her husband has a marvellous infection to the little page: and, truly, master Page is an honest man. Never a wife in Windsor leads a better life than she does; do what she will, say what she will, take all, pay all, go to bed when she list, rise when she list, all is as she will; and truly she deserves it: for if there be a kind woman in Windsor, she is one. You must send her your page; no remedy. Fal. Why, I will.

Quick. Nay, but do so then: and, look you, he may come and go between you both; and, in any case have a nay-word,2 that you may know one another's mind, and the boy never need to understand any thing; for 'tis not good that children should know any wickedness: old folks, you know, have discretion, as they say, and know the world.

tracts me!

Fal. Fare thee well: commend me to them both: there's my purse: I am yet thy debtor.Boy, go along with this woman.- -This news dis[Exeunt Quickly and Robin. Pist. This punk is one of Cupid's carriers Clap on more sails; pursue, up with your fights; Give fire; she is my prize, or ocean whelm them [Exit Pistol.

all!

Fal. Say'st thou so, old Jack? go thy ways; I'll make more of thy old body than I have done. Will they yet look after thee? Wilt thou, after the expense of so much money, be now a gainer?

(1) By all means.

(2) A watch-word.

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