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[Shallow.] Come, Sir John, which four will you have ? [Falstaff:] Which would you choose for me, master
Shallow ? [Shallow.] Marry-Mouldy, Bullcalf, Feeble, and Shadow. [Falstaff:] Mouldy and Bullcalf—for you, Mouldy, stay at home still—you are past service ; and for you,
Bulltill you come unto it: I will none of
you. [Shallow.] Sir John, Sir John, you do yourself wrong—they
are your likeliest men, and I'd have you served with
the best. [Falstaff.] Will you tell me, master Shallow, how to choose a man ?
Care I for the limbs, the stature, the bulk, and big assemblance of a man? Give me the spirit, master Shallow. Here's this same half-faced fellow, Shadow,-give me this man; he presents no mark to the enemy; the foeman may as well level at the edge of a penknife: and for a retreat, how swiftly will this Feeble, the tailor, run off! Oh, give me the spare men, and spare me the great ones. These fellows will do well, master Shallow. Heaven keep you, master Silence, I will not use many words with you. Fare you well, gentlemen both : I thank you : I must a dozen miles to-night.-Bardolph, give the soldiers
coats. [Shallow.] Sir John, heaven bless you, and prosper your
affairs, and send us peace! As you return, visit my poor house ; let our old acquaintance be renewed;
peradventure, I will with you to court. [Falstaff.] I would you would, master Shallow. [Shallow.] Go to; I have spoken. Fare you well, fare
you well, Sir John. Let us follow Sir John, as he moves from the house, and listen to his soliloquy: [Falstaff.] I do see the bottom of this justice Shallow.
Heavens ! how subject we old men are to this vice of
lying! This same starved justice does nothing but prate of the wildness of his youth, and every third word a lie. I do remember him at Clement's Inn like a man made after supper of a cheese-paring: he was so forlorn that his dimensions to any thick sight were invisible,—the very genius of famine: you might have trussed him and all his apparel into an eel-skin; the case of a treble hautboy was a mansion for him, a court;—and now is he become a 'squire, and hath land and beeves. Well, I will be acquainted with him, if I return: and it shall go hard but I will make him a philosopher's stone to me. If the young dace be a bait for the old pike, I see no reason, in the law of nature, but I may snap at him. Let time shape, and
there an end. Falstaff being again on his way, we will once more, in imagination, march in advance of him, transporting ourselves to Gaultree forest in Yorkshire, where we shall find Prince John of Lancaster, accompanied by Lord Westmorland, in parley with the chiefs of the rebels : the king's army is of course immediately at hand, but Falstaff, owing to his delays in London, has not yet joined it: Prince John is the first speaker : [P. John.] You a're well-encounter'd here, my cousin Mow
Good day to you, my gentle lord archbishop ;- [bray :
to hear with reverence
Turning the word to sword, and life to death.
The parcels and particu'lars of our grief ;
With grant of our most just and right desires :
To the last man.
And like them all, and do approve them all;
My lord, these griefs shall be with speed redress’d. Westmorland seconds the insidious purpose of ihe prince : [Westmorland.] If this may please you, lord archbishop, And
you, lord Mowbray, and the rest in arms,
Of our restored love and amity. [Archbishop.] I take your princely word for these redresses. [P. John.] I give it you, and will maintain my word. [Archbishop.] Go, gentlemen, deliver to the army
This news of peace; let them have pay and part :
I know it well will please them. Prince John significantly delivers a like command to Westmorland, who proceeds as if to put it in execution : he afterwards returns, and makes known to the prince, that the king's army still keep the ranks till commanded by him to disperse : prince John answers first in an undertone to Westmorland, and then addresses the archbishop: P. John.] Our army know their duties, cousin Westmor
Your drums, my lord archbishop, do announce, [land.
[Archbishop.] Go, lord Hastings,
And ere they be dismiss'd, let them march by :-
Each hurries towa’rd his home and resting-place.
Is this proceeding fair and honourable ?
lord of Lancaster ? [P. John.] I pawn'd you none :
I promis'd you redress of these same grievances,
One time or other, break some gallows' back. [Falstaff'] What, my lord, do you think me a swallow, an
arrow, or a bullet? I have speeded hither with the very extremest inch of possibility; and, travel-tainted as I am, I have, in my pure and immaculate valour, taken Sir John Colvile of the Dale, a most furious knight and valorous enemy: but what of that? he saw me, and yielded ; that I may justly say, with the hooked-nosed fellow of Rome, I came, saw, con
But now despatch we towa’rd the court, my lords ;
[Falstaff.] My lord, I beseech you, give me leave to go
through Glo’stershire ; and, when you come to court, let me stand, my good lord, 'pray, in your good re
[a pause.] [Falstaff-] Good faith, this same sober-blooded boy doth
not love me; and a man cannot make him laugh; but
any deed of courage. If I had a thousand sons, the first human principle I would teach them should be, to forswear thin potations, and addict themselves to
sack.--How now, Bardolph ? [Bardolph.] The army is discharged all, and gone. [Falstaff.] Let them go. I'll through Glo'stershire, and
there will I visit master Robert Shallow, Esquire. I have him already tempering between my finger and thumb, and shortly will I seal him.