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And brave attendants near him when he wakes,
1 Hun. Believe me, lord, I think he cannot choose.
Lord. Even as a flattering dream, or worthless fancy.
will 't please your lorđship cool your hands?
1 Hun. My lord, I warrant you, we will play our part,
Lord. Take him up gently, and to bed with him, And each one to his office when he wakes.
(SLY is borne out. A trumpet sounds. Sirrah, go see what trumpet 't is that sounds:
[Exit Servant. your honour.
Belike, some noble gentleman, that means,
An it please your honour,
Now, fellows, you are welcome.
Lord. With all my heart. — This fellow I remember,
1 Play. I think, 't was Soto that your honour means.
Lord. 'T is very true: thou didst it excellent.
1 Play. Fear not, my lord: we can contain ourselves, Were he the veriest antic in the world
Lord. Go, sirrah, take them to the buttery,
[Exeunt Servant and Players.
Sirrah, go you to Bartholmew my page,
[To a Servant. And see him dress'd in all suits like a lady: That done, conduct him to the drunkard's chamber; And call him madam, do him obeisance: Tell him from me, as he will win my love, He bear himself with honourable action, Such as he hath observ'd in noble ladies Unto tbeir lords by them accomplished: Such duty to the drunkard let him do, With soft low tongue, and lowly courtesy; And say, - what is 't your honour will command, Wherein your lady, and your humble wife May show her duty, and make known her love? And then, with kind embracements, tempting kisses, And with decliving head into his bosom, Bid him shed tears, as being overjoy'd To see her noble lord restor'd to health, Who for this seven years hath esteemed him No better than a poor and loathsome beggar. And if the boy have not a woman's gift, To rain a shower of commanded tears, An opion will do well for such a shift, Which, in a napkio being close convey'd, Shall in despite enforce a watery eye. See this despatch'd with all the haste thou canst: Anon I'll give thee more instructions.
[Exit Servant. I know, the boy will well usurp the grace, Voice, gait, and action of a gentlewoman: I long to hear him call the drunkard husband, And how my men will stay themselves from laughter, When they do homage to this simple peasant. I'll in to counsel them: haply, my presence May well abate the over-merry spleen, Which otherwise would grow into extremes.
A Bedchamber in the Lord's House. Sly is discovered, with Attendants; some with apparel, others with bason, ewer, and appurtenances. Enter LORD,
dressed like a Servant. Sly. For God's sake, a pot of small ale! 1 Serv. Will 't please your lordship drink a cup of sack ? 2 Serv. Will 't please your honour taste of these conserves ? 3 Serv. What raiment will your honour wear to-day?
Sly. I am Christophero Sly; call not me honour, nor lordship: I ne'er drank sack in my life; and if you give me any conserves, give me conserves of beef. Ne'er ask me what raiment I 'll wear, for I have no more doublets than backs, no more stockings than legs, nor no more shoes than feet; nay, sometime, more feet than shoes, or such shoes as my toes look through the overleather.
Lord. Heaven cease this idle humour in your honour!
Sly. What! would you make me mad? Am not I Christopher Sly, old Sly's son, of Burton-heath; by birth a pedlar, by education a card-maker, by transmutation a bear-herd, and now by present profession a tinker? Ask Marian Hacket, the fat alewife of Wincot, if she know me not: if she say I am not fourteen pence on the score for sheer ale, score me up for the lyingest knave in Christendom. What! I am not bestraught. Here's —
1 Serv. 0! this it is that makes your lady mourn.
Lord. Hence comes it that your kindred shun your house,
Wilt thou have music? hark! Apollo plays, [Music.
1 Serv. Say thou wilt course, thy greyhounds are as swift As breathed stags, ay, fleeter than the roe.
2 Serv. Dost thou love pictures? we will fetch thee straight
Lord. We'll show thee lo as she was a maid,
3 Serv. Or Daphne roaming through a thoruy wood,
Lord. Thou art a lord, and nothing but a lord:
1 Serv. And, till the tears that she hath shed for thee,
Sly. Am I a lord? and have I such a lady?