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Mrs. Ford. Here, set it down. Mrs. Page. Give your men the charge; we must be brief.

thee, there's something extraordinary in thee. Come I cannot cog, and say, thou art this and that, like a many of these lisping haw-thorn buds, that come like women in men's apparel, and smell like Buckler's

Mrs. Ford. Marry, as I told you before, John, and Robert, be ready here hard by in the brew-bury in simple-time; I cannot but I love thee; house; and when I suddenly call you, come forth, none but thee; and thou deservest it. and (without any pause, or staggering,) take this Mrs. Ford. Do not betray me, sir; fear, you basket on your shoulders that done, trudge with it love mistress Page. in all haste, and carry it among the whitsters in Datchet mead, and there empty it in the muddy ditch, close by the Thames side.

Mrs. Page. You will do it?

Mrs. Ford. I have told them over and over; they lack no direction: Be gone, and come when you are called. [Exeunt Servants.

Mrs. Page. Here comes little Robin.

Enter ROBIN.

Mrs. Ford. How now, my eyas-musket? what news with you?

Rob. My master, sir John, is come in at your back-door, mistress Ford; and requests your company.

Mrs. Page. You little Jack-a-lent, have you been true to us?

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.

Mrs. Page. Thou'rt a good boy; this secrecy o 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. Mistress Page, remember you your cue. [Exit ROBIN.

Mrs. Page. I warrant thee; if I do not act it, hiss me. [Erit Mrs. PAGe. Mrs. Ford. Go to then; we'll use this unwholesome humidity, this gross watery pumpion;— we'll teach him to know turtles from jays.

Enter FALSTaff.

Fal. Have I caught thee, my heavenly jewel? Why, now let me die, for I have lived long enough; this is the period of my ambition; O this blessed hour!

Mrs. Ford. O sweet sir John!

Fal. Mistress Ford, I cannot cog, I cannot prate, mistress Ford. Now shall I sin in my wish: I would thy husband were dead; I'll speak it before the best lord, I would make thee my lady.

Mrs. Ford. I your lady, sir John! alas, I should be a pitiful lady.

Fal. Let the court of France show me such another; I see how thine eye would emulate the diamond: Thou hast the right arched bent of the brow, that becomes the ship-tire, the tire-valiant, or any tire of Venetian admittance.

Mrs. Ford. A plain kerchief, sir John: my brows become nothing else; nor that well neither.

Fal. Thou art a traitor to say so: thou would'st make an absolute courtier; and the firm fixture of thy foot would give an excellent motion to thy gait, in a semi-circled farthingale. I see what thou wert, if fortune thy foe were not; nature is thy friend: Come, thou canst not hide it.

Mrs. Ford. Believe me, there's no such thing in

Fal. Thou might'st as well say, I love to walk by the Counter-gate; which is as hateful to me as the reek of a lime-kiln.

Mrs. Ford. Well, heaven knows, how I love you; and you shall one day find it.

Fal. Keep in that mind; I'll deserve it.

Mrs. Ford. Nay, I must tell you, so you do; or else I could not be in that mind.

Rob. [within.] Mistress Ford, mistress Ford! here's mistress Page at the door, sweating, and blowing, and looking wildly, and would needs speak with you presently.

behind the arras.
Fal. She shall not see me; I will ensconce me

woman. —

Mrs. Ford. Pray you, do so she's a very tattling
[FALSTAFF hides himself.
Enter Mistress PAGE and ROBIN.
What's the matter? how now?

Mrs. Page. O mistress Ford, what have you done? You're shamed, you are overthrown, you are undone for ever.

Mrs. Ford. What's the matter, good mistress Page?

Mrs. Page. O well-a-day, mistress Ford! having an honest man to your husband, to give him such cause of suspicion !

Mrs. Ford. What cause of suspicion?

Mrs. Page. What cause of suspicion?. on you! how am I mistook in you?

Mrs. Ford. Why, alas! what's the matter? Mrs. Page. Your husband's coming hither, 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.

Mrs. Ford. Speak louder. — [Aside.] — '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, why I 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.

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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.

Out up

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me.

Fal. What made me love thee? let that persuade shall I do?

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

E S

Re-enter FALSTAFF.

Fal. Let me see't, let me see't! O let me see't! I'll in, I'll in; follow your friend's counsel;- - I'll in. Mrs. Page. What! Sir John Falstaff! Are these your letters, knight?

Fal. I love thee, and none but thee; help me away: let me creep in here; I'll never [He goes into the basket; they cover him with foul linen. Mrs. Page. Help to cover your master, boy: Call your men, mistress Ford:-You dissembling knight!

Mrs. Ford. What John, Robert, John! [Exit ROBIN. Re-enter Servants.] Go take up these clothes here, quickly; where's the cowl-staff? look, how you drumble; carry them to the laundress in Datchet mead; quickly, come.

Enter FORD, PAGE, CAIUS, and Sir HUGH EVANS.

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?

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Serv. To the laundress, forsooth.

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

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: asce o my chambers, search, seek, find out I'll warrant we'll unkennel the fox: Let me stop this way first: so, now uncape. Page. Good master Ford be contented: you wrong yourself too much.

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

[Exit.

Eva. This is fery fantastical humours and jealousies.

Caius. By gar, 'tis no de fashion of France: it is not jealous in France.

Page. Nay, follow him, gentlemen; see the issue of his search. [Exeunt EVANS, PAGE, and CAIUS. Mrs. Page. Is there not a double excellency in this? Mrs. Ford. I know not which pleases me better, that my husband is deceived, or sir John.

Mrs. Page. What a taking was he in, when your husband asked who was in the basket!

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Mrs. Page. Heard you that? Mrs. Ford. Ay, ay, peace: - You use me well, master Ford, do you?

Ford. Ay, I do so.

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

Ford. Amen.

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

Ford. Ay, ay; I must bear it.

Eva. If there be 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 have your distemper in this kind, for the wealth of Windsor Castle.

Ford. 'Tis my fault, master Page: I suffer for it. Eva. You suffer for a pad conscience: your wife is as honest a 'omans, as I will desires among five thousand, and five hundred too.

Caius. By gar, I see 'tis an honest woman. Ford. Well;- I promised you a dinner: Come, come, walk in the park: I pray you, pardon me; I will hereafter make known to you, why I have done this. Come, wife;-come, mistress Page; I pray you, pardon me; pray heartily, pardon me.

Page. Let's go in, gentlemen; but, trust me, we'll mock him. I do invite you to-morrow morning to my house to breakfast; after, we'll a birding together; I have a fine hawk for the bush: Shall it be so?

Ford. Any thing.

Eva. If there is one, I shall make two in the company.

Caius. If there be one or two, I shall make-a de turd.

Eva. In your teeth: for shame.

Ford. Pray you go, master Page.

Eva. I pray you now, remembrance to-morrow on the lousy knave, mine host.

Caius. Dat is good; by gar, vit all my heart Eva. A lousy knave; to have his gibes and his mockeries. [Exeunt. SCENE IV. - A Room in Page's House. Enter FENTON and Mistress ANNE PAGE.

Fent. I see, I cannot get thy father's love; Therefore no more turn me to him, sweet Nan. Anne. Alas! how then? Fent. Why, thou must be thyself. He doth object, I am too great of birth; And that, my state being gall'd with my expence, 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.

Fent. No, heaven so speed me in my time to come!

Albeit, I will confess, thy father's wealth
Was the first motive that I woo'd thee, Anne:
Yet, wooing thee, I found thee of more value
Than stamps in gold, or sums in sealed bags;
And 'tis the very riches of thyself
That now I aim at.

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choice. O, what a world of vile ill-favour'd faults Looks handsome in three hundred pounds a year! [Aside. Quick. And how does good master Fenton? Pray you, a word with you.

Shal. She's coming; to her, coz. hadst a father!

O boy, thou

Slen. I had a father, mistress Anne; my uncle can tell you good jests of him: : - Pray you, uncle, tell mistress Anne the jest, how my father stole two geese out of a pen, good uncle.

Shal. Mistress Anne, my cousin loves you. Slen. Ay, that I do; as well as I love any woman in Gloucestershire.

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Shal. He will maintain you like a gentlewoman. Slen. Ay, that I will, come cut and long-tail, under the degree of a 'squire.

Shal. He will make you a hundred and fifty pounds jointure.

Anne. Good master Shallow, let him woo for himself.

Shal. Marry, I thank you for it; I thank you for that good comfort. She calls you, coz: I'll leave

you.

Anne. Now, master Slender.
Slen. Now, good mistress Anne.
Anne. What is your will?

Slen. My will? 'od's heartlings, that's a pretty jest, indeed! I ne'er made my will yet, I thank heaven; I am not such a sickly creature, I give heaven praise.

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.
Love him, daugh-

Come, master Shallow; come, son Slender; in: -
Knowing my mind, you wrong me, master Fenton.
[Exeunt PAGE, SHALLOW, and Slender.
Quick. Speak to mistress Page.

Fent. Good mistress Page, for that I love: your
daughter

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’
fool.

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.

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:
Her father will be angry.

She must needs go in;

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[Exeunt Mrs. PAGE and ANNE. Fent. Farewell, gentle mistress; farewell, Nan. Quick. This is my doing now;- - Nay, said I, will you cast away your child on a fool, and a physician ? Look on master Fenton: this is my doing. Fent. I thank thee; and I pray thee, once to

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night

Give my sweet Nan this ring: There's for thy pains. [Exit.

Quick. Now heaven send thee good fortune! A kind heart he hath: a woman would run through fire and water for such a kind heart. But yet, I would my master had mistress Anne; or I would master Slender had her; or, in sooth, I would master Fenton had her: I will do what I can for them all three ; for so I have promised, and I'll be as good as my word; but speciously for master Fenton. Well, I must of another errand to sir John Falstaff from my two mistresses; What a beast am I to slack it? Exit.

Page. Now, master Slender:

ter Anne.
Why, how now! what does master Fenton here?
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 should have been a mountain of mummy. my child.

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

SCENE V.- A Room in the Garter Inn.
Enter FALSTAFF and BArdolph.

Fal. Bardolph, I say, -
Bard. Here, sir.

Fal. Go fetch me a quart of sack; put a toast in't. [Exit BARD.] Have I lived to be carried in a basket, like a barrow of butcher's offal; and to be thrown into the Thames? Well, if I be served such another trick, I'll have my brains ta'en out, and butter'd, and give them to a dog for a new year's gift. The rogues slighted me into the river with as little remorse as they would have drowned a bitch's blind puppies, fifteen i' the litter and you may know by my size, that I have a kind of alacrity in sinking; if the bottom were as deep as hell, I should down. I had been drowned, but that the shore was shelvy and shallow; a death that I abhor; for the water swells a man; and what a thing should I have been, when I had been swelled! I

:

No, good master Fenton. you.

Re-enter BARDOLPH, with the wine.
Bard. Here's mistress Quickly, sir, to speak with

Fal. Come, let me pour in some sack to the | Ford's wife's distraction, they conveyed me into a Thames water; for my belly's as cold as if I had swallowed snow-balls for pills to cool the reins. Call her in.

Bard. Come in, woman.

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cry you mercy: Give offended nostril.

Fal. Mistress Ford! I have had ford enough: I was thrown into the ford: I have my belly full of

ford.

Quick. Alas the day! good heart, that was not her fault she does so take on with her men; they mistook their erection.

Fal. So did I mine, to build upon a foolish woman's promise.

Quick. Well, she laments, sir, for it, that it would yearn your heart to see it. Her husband goes this morning a birding; she desires you once more to come to her between eight and nine; I must carry her word quickly: she'll make you amends, I warrant you.

Fal. Well, I will visit her: Tell her so; and bid her think what a man is: let her consider his frailty, and then judge of my merit.

Quick. I will tell her.

Fal. Do so. Between nine and ten, say st thou?
Quick. Eight and nine, sir.

Fal. Well, be gone: I will not miss her.
Quick. Peace be with you, sir.

[Exit. Fal. I marvel, I hear not of master Brook; he sent me word to stay within: I like his money well. O here he comes.

Enter FORD.

Ford. That, indeed, sir John, is my business. Fal. Master Brook, I will not lie to you; I was at her house the hour she appointed me.

Ford. And how sped you, sir?

Fal. Very ill-favouredly, master Brook. Ford. How so, sir? Did she change her determination?

Fal. No, master Brook; but the peaking cornuto her husband, master Brook, dwelling in a continual 'larum of jealousy, comes me in the instant of our encounter, after we had embraced, kissed, protested, and, as it were, spoke the prologue of our comedy; and at his heels a rabble of his companions, thither provoked and instigated by his distemper, and forsooth, to search his house for his wife's love.

buck-basket.

Ford. What, while you were there?
Fal. While I was there.

Ford. And did he search for you and could not find you?

Ford. A buck-basket!

Fal. By the Lord, a buck-basket: rammed me in with foul shirts and smocks, socks, foul stockings, and greasy napkins; that, master Brook, there was the rankest compound of villainous smell, that ever

Ford. Bless you, sir!

Fal. Now, master Brook? you come to knowing; what hath passed between me and Ford's wife.

Fal. You shall hear. As good luck would have it comes in one mistress Page; gives intelligence Ford's approach; and, by her invention and

Ford. And how long lay you there?

Fal. Nay, you shall hear, master Brook, what I have suffered to bring this woman to evil for your good. Being thus crammed in the basket, a couple of Ford's knaves, his hinds, were called forth by their mistress, to carry me in the name of foul clothes to Datchet-lane: they took me on their shoulders; met the jealous knave their master in the door; who asked them once or twice what they had in their basket: I quaked for fear, lest the lunatic knave would have searched it; but fate, ordaining he should be a cuckold, held his hand. Well: on went he for a search, and away went I for foul clothes. But mark the sequel, master Brook: I suffered the pangs of three several deaths: first, an intolerable fright, to be detected with a jealous rotten bell-wether: next, to be compassed, like a good bilbo, in the circumference of a peck, hilt to point, heel to head and then, to be stopped in, like a strong distillation, with stinking clothes that fretted in their own grease: think of that, a man of my kidney, think of that: that am as subject to heat, as butter; a man of continual dissolution and thaw; it was a miracle, to 'scape suffocation. And in the height of this bath, when I was more than half stewed in grease, like a Dutch dish, to be thrown into the Thames, and cooled, glowing hot, in that surge, like a horse-shoe; think of that, - hissing hot, think of that, master Brook.

Ford. In good sadness, sir, I am sorry that for my sake you have suffered all this. My suit then is desperate; you'll undertake her no more.

Fal. Master Brook, I will be thrown into Etna, as I have been into Thames, ere I will leave her thus. Her husband is this morning gone a birding : I have received from her another embassy of meet'twixt eight and nine is the hour, Master

Brook.

Ford. 'Tis past eight already, sir.

Fal. Is it? I will then address me to my appointment. Come to me at your convenient leisure, and you shall know how I speed; and the conclusion shall be crowned with your enjoying her: Adieu. You shall have her, master Brook; master Brook, you shall cuckold Ford. [Exit.

Ford. Hum! ha! is this a vision? is this a dream? do I sleep? Master Ford, awake; awake, master Ford; there's a hole made in your best coat, master Ford. This 'tis to be married! this 'tis to have linen, and buck-baskets! · Well, I will proclaim myself what I am: I will now take the lecher; he is at my house: he cannot 'scape me; 'tis impossible he should; he cannot creep into a halfpenny purse, nor into a pepper-box; but, lest the devil that guides him should aid him, I will search impossible places. Though what I am I cannot avoid, yet to be what I would not, shall not make me tame: if I have horns to make me mad, let the proverb go with me, I'll be horn mad

[Erit.

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Eva. Nominativo, hig, hag, hog; - pray you, mark: genetivo, hujus: Well, what is your accusative case?

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Will. Accusativo, hinc.

Eva. I pray you, have your remembrance, child; Accusativo, hing, hang, hog.

Quick. Hang hog is Latin for bacon, I warrant

- vocativo, O.

Will. O
Eva. Remember, William, focative is, caret.

Quick. And that's a good root.

Eva. 'Oman, forbear.

Will. A stone.

Eva. And what is a stone, William?

Will. A pebble.

Mrs. Ford.
Mrs. Page.

Eva. No, it is lapis; I pray you remember in what hoa! your prain.

Will. Lapis.

What is he, Wil

Eva. That is good, William. liam, that does lend articles?

Will. Articles are borrowed of the pronoun; and be thus declined, Singulariter, nominativo, hic, hæc, hoc.

Will. Genitive, horum, harum, horum.
Quick. 'Vengeance of Jenny's case! fie on her!
- never name her, child, if she be a whore.
Eva. For shame, 'oman.

Mrs. Page. Peace.

Eva. What is your genitive case plural, William?
Will. Genitive case?
Eva. Ay.

Quick. You do ill to teach the child such words: he teaches him to hick and to hack, which they'll do fast enough of themselves, and to call horum: fie upon you!

Eva. 'Oman, art thou lunatics? hast thou no understandings for thy cases, and the numbers of the genders? Thou art as foolish christian creatures as I would desires.

Mrs. Page. Pr'ythee, hold thy peace.

Eva. Shew me now, William, some declensions of your pronouns.

Will. Forsooth, I have forgot.

Eva. It is ki, kæ, cod; if you forget your kies, your kæs, and your cods, you must be preeches. Go your ways, and play, go.

Mrs. Page. He is a better scholar than I thought he was.

Eva. He is a good sprag memory. Farewell, mistress Page.

HUGH. Get you home, boy.
Mrs. Page. Adieu, good sir Hugh.
too long.

SCENE II. — A Room in Ford's House.

Enter FALSTAFF and Mrs. FORD.

Fal. Mistress Ford, your sorrow hath eaten up my sufferance: I see, you are obsequious in your love, and I profess requital to a hair's breadth; not only, mistress Ford, in the simple office of love, but in all the accoutrement, complement, and ceremony of it. But are you sure of your husband now?

[Exit Sir Come, we stay [Exeunt.

Speak louder. [Aside. Mrs. Page. Truly, I am so glad you have no body here.

Mrs. Ford. Why?

Mrs. Page. Why, woman, your husband is in his old lunes again he so takes on yonder with

you.

Eva. Leave your prabbles, 'oman. What is the my husband; so rails against all married mankind; focative case, William?

Lo curses all Eve's daughters, of what complexion soever; and so buffets himself on the forehead, crying Peer-out, peer-out! that any madness, I ever yet beheld, seemed but tameness, civility, and patience, to this his distemper he is in now: I am glad the fat knight is not here.

Mrs. Ford. Why, does he talk of him?

He's a birding, sweet sir John.
[Within.] What hoa, gossip Ford

Mrs. Ford. Step into the chamber, sir John.
[Exit FALSTAFF.

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Enter Mrs. PAGE.

Mrs. Page. How now, sweetheart? who's at home beside yourself?

Mrs. Ford. Why, none but mine own people.
Mrs. Page. Indeed?

Mrs. Ford. No, certainly;

Mrs. Page. Of none but him; and swears, he was carried out, the last time he searched for him

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