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Simp. Ay, forsooth, to desire her to
Quic. Peace, I pray you.
Caius. Peace-a your tongue, speak-a your tale.

Simp. To desire this honest gentlewoman, your maid, to speak a good word to mistress Anne Page for my

master in the way of marriage.

Quic. This is all indeed-la; but I'll ne'er put my finger in the fire, l'indeed not I.

Caius. Sir Hugh send-a-you? Rugby, + 'baillez' me some paper; tarry you a little-a-while.

Quic. I am glad he is so quiet; if he had been throughly moved, you should have heard him so loud, and so melancholy: but notwithstanding, man, I'll do for your master what good I can; and the very yea and the no is, the French Doctor my master, (I may call him my master, look

you, for I keep his house, and I wash, wring, brew, bake, fcour, dress meat and drink, make the beds, and do all my felf.)

Simp. 'Tis a great charge to come under one body's hand.

Quic. Are you a-vis'd o' that? you shall find it a great charge? and to be up early and down late. But notwithstanding, to tell you in your ear, I would have no words of it, my master himself is in love with mistress Anne Page ; but notwithstanding that, I know Anne's mind, that's neither here nor there.

Caius. You jack’nape; give-a dis letter to Sir Hugh, by gar it is a shallenge: I vill cut his troat in de parke, and I vill teach a scurvy jack-a-nape priest to meddle or make you may be gone, it is not good you tarry here ; by gar I vill cut all his two stones, by gar he shall not have a stone to trow at his dog.

[Exit Simple. Quic. Alas, he speaks but for his friend.

Caius. It is no matter'a for dat: do not you tell-a-me dat I Thall have Arne Page for my felf? by gar I vill kill the jack priest; and I have appointed mine host of de Jartere to measure our weapon ; by gar I vill my self have Anne Page.

Quic. 3 and need not. 4 balloz ... old edit. Tbeob. emend.

Quic. Sir, the maid loves you, and all shall be well : we must give folks leave to prate; what the goujeres!

Caius. Rugby, come to the court vith me; by gar, if I have not Anne Page, I shall turn your head out of my door; follow my heels, Rugby.

[Exeunt Caius and Rugby. Quic. You shall have An fools-head of your own. No, I know Anne's mind for that; never a woman in Windsor knows more of Anne's mind than I do, nor can do more than I s 'can' with her, I thank heav'n.

Fent. (Within.] Who's within there, hoa?

Quic. Who's there, I trow? come near the house, I pray you.


Enter Mr. Fenton. Fent. How now, good woman, how dost thou? Quic. The better that it pleases your good worship to ask. Fent. What news? how does


mistress Anne? Quic. In truth, Sir, and she is pretty, and honest, and gentle, and one that is your friend, I can tell

you that by the way, I praise heav'n for it.

Fent. Shall I do any good, think'st thou shall I not lose my suit

Quic. Troth, Sir, all is in his hands above; but notwithstanding, master Fenton, I'll be sworn on a book she loves you: have not your worship a wart above your eye?

Fent. Yes marry have I; and what of that?

Quic. Well, thereby hangs a tale; good faith it is such another Nan; but, I detest, an honest maid as ever broke bread; we had an hour's talk of that wart: I shall never laugh but in that maid's company: but indeed she is given too much to allicholly and musing; but for you--Well--

go to

Fent. Well, I shall see her to-day; hold, there's mony for thee : let me have thy voice in my behalf; if thou seeft her before me, commend me

Quic. 6 do

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Quic. Will I? ay faith that I will: and I will tell your worship more of the wart the next time we have confidence, and of other wooers.

Fent. Well, farewel, I am in great hafte now. [Exit.

Quic. Farewel to your worship. Truly an honest gentleman, but Anne loves him not; I know Anne's mind as well as another does. Out upon’t, what have I forgot?

[ Exit.




Before Page's House.
Enter Mistress Page with a letter.

Mrs. PAGE.
HAT, have I 'scap'd love-letters in the holy-day-
time of my beauty, and am I now a subject for

them? let me fee: Ask me no reason why I love you ; for tho love use reason for his precisian, be admits him not for his counsellor : you are not young, no more am l; go to then, there's fympathy: you are merry, so am I; ba! ha! then there's more Sympathy : you love Jack, and so do I; would you desire better sympathy ? let it suffice thee, mistress Page, at the leaft if the love of a soldier can sufice, that I love thee. I will not say, pity me, 'tis not a soldier-like phrase; but I say, Love me :

By me, thine own true Knight, by day or night,
Or any kind of light, with all his might,
For thee to fight.

John Falstaff. What a Herod of Jury is this! O wicked, wicked world! one that is well nigh worn to pieces with age, to show


6 wc

himself a young gallant? what unweigh'd behaviour hath this Flemish drunkard pickt, i'th' devil's name, out of my conversation, that he dares in this manner affay me? why, he hath not been thrice in my company: what should I say to him? I was then frugal of my

mirth ; heav'n forgive me, why, I'll exhibit a bill in the parliament for the putting down of 7 'Mum a:' how shall I be reveng'd on him? for reveng'd I will be, as fure as his guts are made of puddings.

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Mrs. Ford. Mistress Page, trust me, I was going to

your house.

Mrs. Page. And trust me, I was coming to you ; you look very ill.

Mrs. Ford. Nay, I'll ne'er believe that: I have to fhew to the contrary

Mrs. Page. ’Faith you do, in my mind.

Mrs. Ford. Well, I do then; yet I say, I could shew you to the contrary: O mistress Page, give me some counsel.

Mrs. Page. What's the matter, woman?

Mrs. Ford. O woman! if it were not for one trifling respect, I could come to such honour.

Mrs. Page. Hang the trifle, woman, take the honour ; what is it? dispense with trifles; what is it?

Mrs. Ford. If I would but go to hell for an eternal moment, or so, I could be knighted. Mrs. Page. What, thou lieft! Sir Alice Ford! these

Knights (a) A fattening liquor much in use among the Flemings, as fhe had calld him a Flemish Drunkard a few lines before, and it is to be obferu'd that about the time when this Play was written there were on foot several bills in Parliament for restraining the use of Arong liquors, supprefling the multitude of malters, and the great brewing of Arong beer, and regulating Inns, Taverns, and Alehouses.

Warburton. 7 fat men : old edit. W'arb. emend.

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Knights will hack, and so thou shouldst not alter the article of thy gentry.

Mrs. Ford. We burn day-light ; here read, read; perceive how I might be knighțed: I shall think the worse of fat men as long as I have an eye to make difference of men's liking; and yet he would not swear; prais'd women's modesly; and gave such orderly and well-behaved reproof to all uncomeliness, that I would have sworn his disposition would have gone to the truth of his words; but they do no more adhere, and keep place together, than the hundredth psalm to the tune of Green Sleeves. What tempest, I trow, threw this whale, with so many tun of oil in his belly, a’shore at Windfor? how shall I be reveng'd on him? I think the best way were to entertain him with hope, 'till the wicked fire of lust have melted him in his own grease. Did you ever hear the like?

Mrs. Page. Letter for letter, but that the name of Page and Ford differs. To thy great comfort in this mystery of ill opinions, here's the twin-brother of thy letter; but let thine inherit first, for I protest mine never shall, I warrant he hath a thousand of these letters, writ with blank-space for different names; nay, more, and these are of the second edition: he will print them out of doubt, for he cares not what he puts into the press, when he would put us two. I had rather be a giantels, and lye under mount Pelion. Well, I will find you twenty lascivious turtles, ere one chaste man.

Mrs. Ford. Why, this is the very fame, the very hand, the very words; what doth he think of us?

Mrs. Page. Nay, I know not; it makes me almost ready to wrangle with mine own honesty. I'll entertain my lelf like one that I am not acquainted withal; for sure, unless he knew some stain in me, that I know not my felf, he would never have boarded me in this fury.

Mrs. Ford. Boarding, call it you? I'll be sure to keep him above deck.


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