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Sim. I thank your worship: I shall make my master glad with these tidings. [Exit Simple.
Host. Thou art clerkly, I thou art clerkly, sir John : Was there a wise woman with thee?
Fal. Ay, that there was, mine host ; one that hath taught me more wit than ever I learned before in my life: and I paid nothing for it neither, but was paid for my learning.
Host. Where be my horses ? speak well of them, varletto.
Bard. Run away with the cozeners; for so soon as I came beyond Eton, they threw me off, from behind one of them, in a slough of mire; and set spurs, and away, like three German devils, three Doctor Faustuses.
Host. They are gone but to meet the duke, villain : do not say, they be fled ; Germans are honest
Enter Sir Hugh Evans.
a friend of mine come to town, tells me, there is three cousin Germans, that has cozened all the hosts of Readings, of Maidenhead, of Colebrook, of horses and money. I tell you for a good-will
, look you: you are wise, and full of gibes and plouting-stogs; and 'tis not convenient you should be cozened: Fare you well.
Enter Doctor Caius.
• with me;
Host. Here, master doctor, in perplexity, and doubtful dilemma.
Caius. I cannot tell vat is dat: but it is tell-a me, dat you
make grand preparation for a duke de Jarmany : by my trot, dere is no duke, dat the court is know to come; I tell you for good vill : adieu.
[Exit. Host. Húe and cry, villain, go :-assist me, knight; I am undone :-Ay, run, hue and cry, villain! I am undone! (Exeunt Host and Bardolph.
Fal. I would, all the world might be cozened; for I have been cozen'd and beaten too. If it should come to the ear of the court, how I have been transformed, and how my transformation hath been washed and cudgelled, they would melt me out of my fat, drop by drop, and liquor fishermen's boots
warrant, they would whip me with their fine wits, till I were as crest-fallen as a dried pear. I never prospered since I forswore myself at Primero.1 Well, if my wind were but long enough to say my prayers, I would repent.
Enter Mrs. Quickly. Now! whence come you?
Quick. From the two parties, forsooth. Fal. The devil take one party, and his dam the other, and so they shall be both bestowed! I have suffered more for their sakes, more, than the villanous inconstancy of man's disposition is able to
Quick. And have not they suffered? Yes, I warrant; speciously one of them; mistress Ford, good heart, beaten black and blue, that you cannot see a white spot about her.
Fal. What tell'st thou me of black and blue? I was beaten myself into all the colours of the rain. bow, and I was like to be apprehended for the
(1) A game at cards.
witch of Brentford; but that my admirable dex. terity of wit, my counterfeiting the action of an old woman, deliver'd me, the knave constable had set me i' the stocks, i' the common stocks, for a witch.
Quick. Sir, let me speak with you in your chamber : you shall hear how things go; and, I warrant, to your content. Here is a letter will say somewhat. Good hearts, what ado here is to bring you together! Sure, one of you does not serve heaven well, that you are so crossed.
Fal. Come up into my chamber. [Exeunt.
SCENE VI.-Another Room in the Garter Inn.
Enter Fenton and Host.
Host. Master Fenton, talk not to me; my
mind is heavy, I will give over all. Feni. Yet hear me speak: Assist me in my
purpose, And, as I am a gentleman, I'll give thee A hundred pounds in gold, more than your loss.
Host. I will hear you, master Fenton ; and I will, at the least, keep your counsel.
Fent. From time to time I have acquainted you With the dear love I bear to fair Anne Page; Who, mutually, hath answer'd my affection (So far forth as herself might be her chooser,) Even to my wish: I have a letter from her Of such contents as you will wonder at; The mirth whereof so larded with my matter, That neither, singly, can be manifested, Without the show of both ;-wherein fat Falstaff Hath a great scene; the image of the jest
(Showing the letter. I'l show you here at large. Hark, good mine
host: To-night at Herne's oak, just 'twixt twelve and
one, Must my sweet Nan present the fairy queen;
The purpose why, is here ;' in which disguise,
, quaint2 in green, she shall be loose enrob’d,
mother? Fent. Both, my good host, to go along with me : And here it rests,--that you'll procure the vicar To stay for me at church, 'twixt twelve and one, And, in the lawful name of marrying, To give our hearts united ceremony. Host. Well, husband your device; I'll to the
vicar; Bring you the maid, you shall not lack a priest.
Fent. So shall I evermore be bound to thee; Besides, I'll make a present recompense. (Exeunt.
(1) In the letter:
SCENE I.--A Room in the Garter Inn. Enter
Falstaff and Mrs. Quickly. Fal. Pry'thee, no more prattling ;-go. -I'll hold:1 This is the third time; I hope, good luck lies in odd numbers. Away, go; they say, there is divinity in odd numbers, either in nativity, chance, or death.--Away.
Quick. I'll provide you a chain; and I'll do what I can to get you a pair of horns.
Fal. Away, I say ; time wears: hold up your head, and mince.
[Exit Mrs. Quickly.
Enter Ford. How now,
master Brook? Master Brook, the matter will be known to-night, or never. Be you in the Park about midnight, at Herne's oak, and you shall see wonders.
Ford. Went you not to her yesterday, sir, as you told me you had appointed ?
Fal. I went to her, master Brook, as you see, like a poor old man: but I came from her, master Brook, like a poor old woman. That same knave, Ford her husband, hath the finest mad devil of jealousy in him, master Brook, that ever governed phrensy. I will tell you. He beat me grievously, in the shape of a woman; for in the shape of man, master Brook, I fear not Goliath with a weaver's beam; because I know also, life is a shuttle. I am in haste; go along with me; I'll tell you all
, master Brook. Since I plucked geese, 'played truant, and whipped top, I knew not what it was to be beaten, till lately. Follow me: I'll tell you strange things of this knave Ford : on whom to.
(1) Keep to the time,