Imágenes de páginas

Enter PAGE.

Page. Who's there?

Eva. Here is Got's plessing, and your friend, and justice Shallow: and here young master Slender; that peradventures, shall tell you another tale, if matters grow to your likings.

Page. I am glad to see your worships well: I thank you for my venison, master Shallow.

Shal. Master Page, I am glad to see you; Much good do it your good heart! I wished your venison better; it was ill kill'd:- How doth good mistress Page?and I love you+ always with my heart, la; with my heart.

Page. Sir, I thank you.

Shal. Sir, I thank you; by yea and no, I do.

Page. I am glad to see you, good master Slender. Slen. How does your fallow greyhound, sir? I heard he was out-run on Cotsale.5


Page. It could not be judg'd, sir.

Slen. You'll not confess, you'll not confess.

Shal. That he will not; - 'tis your fault, 'tis your fault:-'Tis a good dog.

Page. A cur, sir.

Shal. Sir, he's a good dog, and a fair dog; Can there be more said? he is good, and fair. Is sir John Falstaff here?

Page. Sir, he is within; and I would I could do a good office between you.

Eva. It is spoke as a christians ought to speak.

Shal. He hath wrong'd me, master Page.

Page. Sir, he doth in some sort confess it.

+"thank you"- MALONE.

5 How does your fallow greyhound, sir? I heard say, he was outrun on Cotsale.] Cotswold in Gloucestershire, where there was an annual celebration of games, consisting of rural sports and exercises.

Shal. If it be confess'd, it is not redress'd; is not that so, master Page? He hath wrong'd me; indeed, he hath; at a word he hath;-believe me; Robert Shallow, esquire, saith, he is wrong'd.

Page. Here comes sir John.


Fal. Now, master Shallow; you'll complain of me to the king?

Shal. Knight, you have beaten my men, killed my deer, and broke open my lodge.

Fal. But not kiss'd your keeper's daughter?

Shal. Tut, a pin! this shall be answer❜d.

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Fal. I will answer it straight; I have done all this: That is now answer'd.

Shal. The council shall know this.

Fal. 'Twere better for you, if it were known in counsel: you'll be laugh'd at.

Eva. Pauca verba, sir John, goot worts.


Fal. Good worts! good cabbage. - Slender, I broke your head; What matter have you against me?

Slen. Marry, sir, I have matter in my head against you; and against your coney-catching rascals 7, Bardolph, Nym, and Pistol. They carried me to the tavern, and made me drunk, and afterwards picked my pocket.

Bard. You Banbury cheese!

Slen. Ay, it is no matter.

Pist. How now, Mephostophilus ? 9

6 Good worts! good cabbage.] Worts was the ancient name of all the cabbage kind.

71 coney-catching rascals,] A coney-catcher was, in the time of Elizabeth, a common name for a cheat or a sharper.

s You Banbury cheese!] You are like a Banbury cheese, · -nothing but paring.

9 How now, Mephostophilus ?] This is the name of a spirit or familiar, in the old story book of Sir John Faustus.


Slen. Ay, it is no matter.

Nym. Slice, I say! pauca, pauca; slice! that's my humour.

Slen. Where's Simple, my man ? cousin?

can you tell,

Eva. Peace: I pray you! Now let us understand: There is three umpires in this matter, as I understand: that is-master Page, fidelicet, master Page; and there is myself, fidelicet, myself; and the three party is, lastly and finally, mine host of the Garter.

Page. We three, to hear it, and end it between them. Eva. Fery goot: I will make a prief of it in my notebook; and we will afterwards 'ork upon the cause, with as great discreetly as we can.

Fal. Pistol,

Pist. He hears with ears.

Eva. The tevil with his tam! what phrase is this, He hears with ear? Why, it is affectations.

Fal. Pistol, did you pick master Slender's purse? Slen. Ay, by these gloves, did he, (or I would I might never come in mine own great chamber again else,) of seven groats in mill-sixpences, and two Edward shovelboards, that cost me two shilling and two pence a-piece of Yead Miller, by these gloves.

Fal. Is this true, Pistol?

Eva. No; it is false, if it is a pick-purse.

Pist. Ha, thou mountain-foreigner! - Sir John and master mine,

I combat challenge of this latten bilbo :

Word of denial in thy labras here;


Word of denial: froth and scum, thou liest.


Slen. By these gloves, then 'twas he.

Edward shovel-boards,] were the shillings of Edward VI.; of shovel-board, or shuffle-board, was played with them in Shadwell's time.

the game

2 I combat challenge of this latten bilbo :] A latten bilbo means, I believe, no more than a blade as thin as a lath —a vice's dagger. STEEVENS.

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Nym. Be avised, sir, and pass good humours: I will say, marry, trap, with you, if you run the nuthook's humour 5 on me: that is the very note of it.

Slen. By this hat, then he in the red face had it: for though I cannot remember what I did when you made me drunk, yet I am not altogether an ass.

Fal. What say you, Scarlet and John ?6

Bard. Why, sir, for my part, I say, the gentleman had drunk himself out of his five sentences.

Eva. It is his five senses: fie, what the ignorance is! Bard. And being fap 7, sir, was, as they say, cashier'd; and so conclusions pass'd the careires. 8

Slen. Ay, you spake in Latin then too; but 'tis no matter: I'll ne'er be drunk whilst I live again, but in honest, civil, godly company, for this trick: if I be drunk, I'll be drunk with those that have the fear of God, and not with drunken knaves.

Eva. So Got 'udge me, that is a virtuous mind.

Fal. You hear all these matters denied, gentlemen; you hear it.

Enter Mistress ANNE PAGE with Wine; Mistress FORD and Mistress PAGE following.

Page. Nay, daughter, carry the wine in; we'll drink within. [Exit ANNE PAGE.

Slen. O heaven! this is mistress Anne Page.
Page. How now, mistress Ford?

marry, trap,] When a man was caught in his own strata

gem, I suppose the exclamation of insult was



marry, trap!


nuthook's humour-] i. e. if you say I am a thief. Scarlet and John?] The names of two of Robin Hood's companions; but the humour consists in the allusion to Bardolph's red face.

7 And being fap,] i. e. drunk.


careires.] i.e." and so in the end he reel'd about with a circuitous motion, like a horse, passing a carier."

Fal. Mistress Ford, by my troth, you are very met by your leave, good mistress.


[kissing her. Page. Wife, bid these gentlemen welcome : Come, we have a hot venison pasty to dinner; come, gentlemen, I hope we shall drink down all unkindness. [Exeunt all but SHAL. SLENDER, and EVANS. Slen. I had rather than forty shillings, I had my book of Songs and Sonnets here:



How now, Simple! Where have you been? I must wait on myself, must I? You have not The Book of Riddles about you, have you?

Sim. Book of Riddles! why, did not you lend it to Alice Shortcake upon Allhallowmas last, a fortnight afore Michaelmas ?2

Shal. Come, coz; come, coz; we stay for you. A word with you, coz; marry, this, coz; There is, as 'twere, a tender, a kind of tender, made afar off by sir Hugh here;- Do you understand me?

Slen. Ay, sir, you shall find me reasonable; if it be so, I shall do that that is reason.

Shal. Nay, but understand me.

Slen. So I do, sir.

Eva. Give ear to his motions, master Slender: I will description the matter to you, if you be capacity of it. Slen. Nay, I will do as my cousin Shallow says: I



my book of Songs and Sonnets here:] Songes and Sonnettes, written by the Right Honourable Lord Henry Howard, late Earle of Surrey, and others." Slender laments that he has not this fashionable book about him, supposing it might have assisted him in paying his addresses to Anne Page. MALONE.


The Book of Riddles -] This appears to have been a popular book, and is enumerated with others in The English Courtier, and Country Gentleman.

2 · upon Allhallowmas last, a fortnight afore Michaelmas?] An intended blunder of Shakspeare's.

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