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morning gone a birding; I have receiv'd from her another embaffy
of meeting ; 'twixt eight and nine is the hour, mafter Break.

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 conclufion shall be crown'd with your enjoying her;
adieu: you fhall have her, master Brook; mafter Brook, you shall
cuckold Ford,

[Exit.
Ford. Hum! hal is this a vision 2 is this a dream? do I feep?
master Ford, awake; awake, mafter 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 'fcape me; 'tis impossible he should; he cannot creep
into a half-penny purse, nor into a pepper-box. But, left the
devil that guides him should aid him, I will fearch impossible
places; though what I am I cannot avoid, yet to be what I
would not shall not make me tame : if I havę horns to make
one mad, let the proverb go with me, I'll be horn-mad. [Exita

1

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Page's house.
Enter mistress Page, mistress Quickly, and William.

Mrs. PAGE.
S he at mistress Ford's already, think'st thou ?

Quic. Sure, he is by this, or will be presently; but, truly
he is very courageous mad about his throwing into the water
mistress Ford desires you to come suddenly.

Mrs. Page. I'll be with her by and by; I'll but bring my young
man here to school. Look, where his master comes; 'tis a playing
day, I see. How now, fir Hugh, no school to-day?

I

:

Ent er

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Enter Evans.
Eva. No; master Slender is let the boys leave to play.
Quic. Blessing of his heart !

Mrs. Page. Sir Hugh, my husband says, my son profits nothing in the world at his book; I pray you, ask him some questions in his accidence.

Eva. Come hither, William ; hold up your head, come.

Mrs. Page. Come on, sirrah; hold up your head; answer your master, be not afraid.

Eva. William, how many numbers is in nouns ?
Will. Two

Quic. Truly, I thought there had been one number more, because they fay, odd's nowns.

Eva. Peace your tatlings. What is Fair, William ?
Will Pulcher.
Quic. Poulcats ? there are fairer things than poulcats, sure.

Eva. You are a very fimplicity ’oman; I pray you, peace.
What is Lapis, William ?

Will. A stone,
Eva. And what is a stone, William ?
Will. A pebble.
Eva. No, it is Lapis: I pray you, remember in your prain.
Will. Lapis.

Eva. That is a good William: what is he, William, that does lend articles ?

Will. Articles are borrow'd of the pronoun,and be thus declin'd, fingulariter nominativo, hic, hæc, hoc.

Eva. Nominativo, big, hag, hog; pray you, mark : genitivo, hujus : well, what is your accusative case ?

Will. Accusative, hinc.

Eva. I pray you, have your remembrance, child; accusative, hung, hang, hog

Quic. #ang hog is Latin for bacon, I warrant you.

Eva. Leave your prabbles, 'oman. What is the focative cafe, William ?

Ll 2

Will.

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Will. O, vocativo, 0.
Eva. Remember, William, focative is, caret.
Quic. And that's a good root.
Eva. 'Oman, forbear.
Mrs. Page. Peace.
Eva. What is your genitive case plural, William ?
Will. Genitive case ?
Eva. Ay.
Will. Genitive, horum, harum, borum.

Quic. ’Vengeance of Giney's case! fie on her! never name her, child, if she be a whore.

Eva. For shame, 'oman.

Quic. 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 lunacies ? haft thou no understandings for thy cases, and the numbers of the genders ? thou art as foolish christian creatures as I would desire.

Mrs. Page. Pr’ythee, hold thy peace.

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

Will. Forsooth, I have forgot.

Eva. It is, qui, quæ, quod; if you forget your qui's, your que's, and your quod's, you must be preeches; go your ways, and play, gom

Mrs. Page. He is a better fcholar than I thought he was.
Eva. He is a good sprag memory. Farewel, mistress Page.

Mrs. Page. Adieu, good sir Hugh. Get you home, boy. Come we stay too long

[Exeunt

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SCENE II.

Ford's house.
Enter Falftaff, and mistress Ford.
ISTRESS Ford, your forrow hath eaten up my

in
your

love,

Fal.

Mfufferance; fee

and

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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?

Mrs. Ford. He's a birding, sweet fir John.
Mrs. Page. [within] What hoa, gossip Ford! what hoa!
Mrs. Ford. Step into the chamber, sir John. [Ex. Falstaft.

Enter anistress Page.
Mrs.Page. How now, sweet heart? who's at home besides yourself?
Mrs. Ford. Why, none but mine own people.
Mrs. Page. Indeed ?
Mrs. Ford. No, certainly. — Speak louder.
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 fo takes on yonder with my husband, so rails against all married mankind, so curses all Eve's daughters of what complexion soever; and so buffets himself on the forehead, crying, peer-out, peer-out; that any madnefs I ever yet beheld seemd but tameness, civility, and patience to this distemper he is in now; I am glad, the fat knight is not here:

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

Mrs. Page. Of none but him; and swears he was carry'd out, the last time he search'd for him, in a basket; protests to my husband he is now here; and hath drawn him and the rest of their company from their sport, to make another experiment of his suspicion; but I am glad, the knight is not here; now he shall see his own foolery.

Mrs. Ford. How near is he, mistress Page ?
Mrs. Page. Hard by, at street's end, he will be here anon.
Mrs. Ford. I am undone! the knight is here.

Mrs. Page. Why then thou art utterly sham'd, and he's but a dead man. What a woman are you! away with him, away with him; better shame than murther.

Mrs. Ford. Which way should he go? how should I bestow him? fhall I put him into the basket again?

SCENE

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SCENE III.

Enter Falstaff. Fal. No, I'll come no more i'th' basket: may I not go out ere he come?

Mrs. Page. Alas, alas, three of master Ford's brothers watch the door with pistols, that none should issue out; otherwise you might flip ere he came: but what make

you

here? Fal. What shall I do? I'll creep up into the chimney.

Mrs. Ford. There they always use to discharge their birdingpieces; creep into the kiln-hole.

Fal. Where is it?

Mrs. Ford. He will seek there, on my word: neither press, coffer, chest, trunk, well, vault, but he hath an abstract for the remembrance of such places, and goes to them by his note; there is no hiding you in the house.

Fal. I'll go out then.

Mrs. Ford. If you go out in your own semblance, you die, fir John, unless you go out disguis'd. How might we disguise him?

Mrs. Page. Alas-the-day, I know not; there is no woman's gown big enough for him; otherwise he might put on a hat, a muffler, and a kerchief, and so escape.

Fal. Good heart, devise something; any extremity rather than mischief.

Mrs. Ford. My maid's aunt, the fat woman of Brainford, has

a gown above.

Mrs. Page. On my word, it will serve him; she's as big as he is, and there's her thrumb hat, and her muffler too. Run up, fir Yobn.

Mrs. Ford. Go, go, sweet fir John, mistress Page and I will look some linen for your head.

Mrs. Page. Quick, quick, we'll come dress you straight; put on the gown the while.

[Exit. Falstaff. Mrs. Ford. I would, my husband would meet him in this shape; he cannot abide the old woman of Brainford; he swears, she's a witch, forbad her my house, and hath threatned to beat her.

Mrs.

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