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Evans. Od's plessed will ! I will not be absence at the grace.

[Exeunt Shallow and Evans. Anne. Will't please your worship to come in, sir? Slen. No, I thank you, forsooth, heartily; I am very

well. Anne. The dinner attends you, sir.

270 Slen. I am not a-hungry, I thank you, forsooth. Go,

sirrah, for all you are my man, go wait upon my
cousin Shallow. Exit Simple. A justice of
peace sometime may be beholding to his friend
for a man. I keep but three men and a boy yet,
till my mother be dead : but what though? yet

I live like a poor gentleman born.
Anne. I may not go in without your worship : they

will not sit till you come. Slen. I' faith, I'll eat nothing ; I thank you as much 280

as though I did.
Anne. I pray you, sir, walk in.
Slen. I had rather walk here, I thank you. I bruised

my shin th' other day with playing at sword and
dagger with a master of fence: three veneys for
a dish of stewed prunes ; and, by my troth, I
cannot abide the smell of hot meat since. Why
do your dogs bark so? be there bears i the


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Anne. I think there are, sir; I heard them talked of. 290 Slen. I love the sport well;

but I shall as quarrel at it as any man in England. You are

afraid, if you see the bear loose, are you not ?
Anne. Ay, indeed, sir.
Slen. That's meat and drink to me, now.

I have seen
Sackerson loose twenty times, and have taken

him by the chain; but, I warrant you, the
women have so cried and shrieked at it, that it
passed : but women, indeed, cannot abide 'em ;
they are very ill-favoured rough things.


Re-enter Page.
Page. Come, gentle Master Slender, come ; we stay

for you.

Slen. I'll eat nothing, I thank you, sir.
Page. By cock and pie, you shall not choose, sir !

come, come.
Slen. Nay, pray you, lead the way.
Page. Come on, sir.
Slen. Mistress Anne, yourself shall go first.
Anne. Not I, sir ; pray you, keep on.
Slen. Truly, I will not go first; truly, la! I will not 310

do you that wrong. Anne. I pray you, sir, Slen. I'll rather be unmannerly than troublesome.

You do yourself wrong, indeed, la! [Exeunt.

Scene II.

The same.
Enter Sir Hugh Evans and Simple.
Evans. Go your ways, and ask of Doctor Caius' house

which is the way: and there dwells one Mistress
Quickly, which is in the manner of his nurse, or
his dry nurse, or his cook, or his laundry, his

washer, and his wringer.
Sim. Well, sir.
Evans. Nay, it is petter yet. Give her this letter;


for it is a 'oman that altogether's acquaintance
with Mistress Anne Page: and the letter is, to
desire and require her to solicit your master's
desires to Mistress Anne Page. I pray you, be
gone: I will make an end of my dinner, there's
pippins and cheese to come.


Scene III.

A room in the Garter Inn.


Enter Falstaff, Host, Bardolph, Nym, Pistol, and Robin.
Fal. Mine host of the Garter !
Host. What says my bully-rook ? speak scholarly and

Fal. Truly, mine host, I must turn away some of my

followers. Host. Discard, bully Hercules ; cashier : let them

wag ; trot, trot. Fal. I sit at ten pounds a week. Host. Thou 'rt emperor, Cæsar, Keisar, and

Pheezar. I will entertain Bardolph; he shall

draw, he shall tap : said I well, bully Hector ?
Fal. Do so, good mine host.
Host. I have spoke ; let him follow. [To Bard.]

Let me see thee froth and lime : I am at a word ;

[Exit. Fal. Bardolph, follow him. A tapster is a good

trade : an old cloak makes a new jerkin ; a
withered serving-man a fresh tapster. Go;

Bard. It is a life that I have desired : I will thrive.





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Pist. O base Hungarian wight! wilt thou the spigot wield?

[Exit Bardolph. Nym. He was gotten in drink : is not the humour

conceited ? Fal. I am glad I am so acquit of this tinder-box :

his thefts were too open; his filching was like

an unskilful singer; he kept not time. Nym. The good humour is to steal at a minute's

rest. Pist. “Convey,' the wise it call. “Steal!' foh! a 30

fico for the phrase !
Fal. Well, sirs, I am almost out at heels.
Pist. Why, then, let kibes ensue.
Fal. There is no remedy; I must cony-catch; I

must shift.
Pist. Young ravens must have food.
Fal. Which of you know Ford of this town?
Pist. I ken the wight: he is of substance good.
Fal. My honestlads, I will tell you what I am

40 Pist. Two yards, and more. Fal. No quips now, Pistol! Indeed, I am in the

waist two yards about; but I am now about no
waste; I am about thrift. Briefly, I do mean
to make love to Ford's wife: I spy entertainment
in her; she discourses, she carves, she gives the
leer of invitation : I can construe the action of
her familiar style; and the hardest voice of her
behaviour, to be Englished rightly, is, 'I am Sir
John Falstaff's.'

50 Pist. He hath studied her well, and translated her

will, out of honesty into English.

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Nym. The anchor is deep: will that humour

pass ?

Fal. Now, the report goes she has all the rule

of her husband's purse : he hath a legion of

angels. Pist. As many devils entertain ; and “To her, boy,'


say I.

Nym. The humour rises; it is good: humour me 60

the angels.
Fal. I have writ me here a letter to her : and

here another to Page’s wife, who even now gave
me good eyes too, examined my parts with most
judicious cillades; sometimes the beam of her

view gilded my foot, sometimes my portly belly.
Pist. Then did the sun on dunghill shine.
Nym. I thank thee for that humour.
Fal. O, she did so course o'er my exteriors with such

a greedy intention, that the appetite of her eye 70
did seem to scorch me up like a burning-glass!
Here's another letter to her : she bears the purse
too; she is a region in Guiana, all gold and
bounty. I will be cheaters to them both, and
they shall be exchequers to me; they shall be my
East and West Indies, and I will trade to them
both. Go bear thou this letter to Mistress Page;
and thou this to Mistress Ford : we will thrive,

lads, we will thrive.
Pist. Shall I Sir Pandarus of Troy become,

80 And by my side wear steel ? then, Lucifer take all ! Nym. will run no base humour: here, take the

humour-letter: I will keep the haviour of re-

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