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no breedbate: his worst fault is, that he is given to prayer; he is something peevish that way: but nobody but has his fault-but let that pass. Petér Simple, you say your name is?
Sim. Ay, for fault of a better.
Quick. And master Slender's your master?
Quick. Does he not wear a great round beard, like a glover's paring-knife?
Sim. No, forsooth: he hath but a little wee face, with a little yellow beard; a cain-colour'd beard. Quick. A softly-sprighted man, is he not?
Sim. Ay, forsooth: but he is as tall a man of his hands, as any is between this and his head; he hath fought with a warrener.
Quick. How say you?-O, I should remember him; Does he not hold up his head, as it were? and strut in his gait?
Sim. Yes, indeed, does he.
Quick. Well, heaven send Anne Page no worse fortune! Tell master parson Evans, I will do what I can for your master: Anne is a good girl, and I wishRe-enter RUGBY.
Rug. Out, alas! here comes my master.
Quick. We shall all be shent: Run in here, good young man; go into this closet. [Shuts Simple in the closet] He will not stay long.-What, John Rugby! John, what, John, I say!-Go, John, go inquire for my master; I doubt, he be not well, that he comes not home:-and down, down, adown-a, &c. [Sings,
Enter Doctor CAIUS.
Caius. Vat is you sing? I do not like dese toys; Pray you, go and vetch me in my closet un boitier verd; a box, a green-a box; Do intend vat I speak? a green-a box.
Quick. Ay, forsooth, I'll fetch it you. I am glad he went not in himself: if he had found the young man, he would have been horn-mad. [Aside. Caius. Fe, fe, fe, fe! ma foi, il fait fort chaud. Je m'en vais a la Cour, la grande affaire.
Quick. Is it this, sir?
Caius. Ouy; mette le au mon pocket; Depeche, quickly:--Vere is dat knave, Rugby?
Quick. What, John Rugby! John!
Rug. Here, sir.
Caius. You are John Rugby, and you are Jack
Rugby: Come, take-a your rapier, and come after my heel to de court.
Rug. 'Tis ready, sir, here in the porch.
Caius. By my trot, I tarry too long:-Od's me! Qu'ay j'oublie? dere is some simples in my closet, dat I vill not for the varld I shall leave behind.
Quick. Ah me! he'll find the young man there, and be mad.
Caius. O diable, diable! vat is in my closet?—Villany! larron! [Pulling Simple out] Rugby, my rapier. Quick. Good master, be content.
Caius. Verefore shall I be content-a?
Quick. The young man is an honest man.
Caius. Vat shall de honest man do in my closet? dere is no honest man dat shall come in my closet. Quick. I beseech you, be not so flegmatic; hear the trnth of it: he came of an errand to me from parson Hugh.
Sim. Ay, forsooth, to desire her to
Quick. Peace, I pray you.
Caius. Peace-a your tongue;-Speak-a your tale. Sim. To desire this honest gentlewoman, your maid, to speak a good word to mistress Anne Page for my master, in the way of marriage.
Quick. This is all, indeed, la; but I'll ne'er put my finger in the fire, and need not.
Caius. Sir Hugh send-a you?-Rugby, baillez me some paper: Tarry you a little-a while.
[Writes. Quick. I am glad he is so quiet: if he had been thoroughly moved, you should have heard him so loud and so melancholy;-But notwithstanding, man, I'll do your master what good I can: and the very yea and the no is, the French doctor, my master,may call him my master, look you, for I keep his house; and I wash, wring, brew, bake, scour, dress meat and drink, make the beds, and do all myself;Sim. 'Tis a great charge, to come under one body's hand.
Quick. Are you advis'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 park;
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. Quick. Alas, he speaks but for his friend.
Caius. It is no matter-a for dat:-do not you tell-a me dat I shall have Anne Page for myself?-by gar, I vill kill de Jack priest; and I have appointed mine host of de Jarterre to measure our weapon:-by gar, vill myself have Anne Page.
Quick. Sir, the maid loves you, and all shall be well: we must give folks leave to prate: What, the good-jer! Caius. Rugby, come to the court vit 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. Quick. You shall have An fool's-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 do with her, I thank heaven. Fent. [Within] Who's within there, ho?
Quick. Who's there, I trow? Come near the house, I pray you.
Fent. How now, good woman; how dost thou ? Quick. The better, that it pleases your good worship
Fent. What news? how does pretty mistress Anne? Quick. 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 heaven for it.
Fent. Shall I do any good, thinkest thou? Shall I not lose my suit?
Quick. Troth, sir, all is in his hands above: but notwithstanding, master Fenton, I'll be sworn on the book, she loves you:-Have not your worship a wart above your eye?
Fent. Yes, marry, have I; what of that?
Quick. 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 com pany!-But, indeed, she is given too much to allicholy and musing: But for you-Well, go to.
Fent. Well, I shall see her to-day: Hold, there's money for thee; let me have thy voice in my behalf; if thou seest her before me, commend me
Quick. Will I? i'faith, that we will: and I will tell your worship more of the wart, the next time we have confidence; and of other wooers.
Fent. Well, farewell; I am in great haste now. [Exit. Quick. Farewell to your worship.-Truly, an honest gentleman; but Anne loves him not; for I know Anne's mind as well as another does :-Out upon't! what have I forgot. [Exit.
SCENE I. Before PAGE's House.
Enter Mistress PAGE, with a Letter.
Mrs. Page. What! have I 'scaped love-letters in the holy-day time of my beauty, and am I now a subject for them? Let me see: [Reads.
Ask me no reason why I love you; for though love use reason for his precisian, he admits him not for his coun sellor: You are not young, no more am I go to then, there's sympathy: you are merry, so am I; ha! ha! then there's more sympathy: you love sack, and so do I; Would you desire better sympathy? Let it suffice thee, mistress Page (at the least, if the love of a soldier can suffice), 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,
What a Herod of Jewry is this?-O wicked, wicked world!-one that is well nigh worn to pieces with age, to show himself a young gallant! What an unweigh'd behaviour hath this Flemish drunkard pick'd (with the devil's name) out of my conversation, that he dares in this manner assay me? Why, he hath not been thrice in my company -What should I say to him?-I was then frugal of my mirth :-heaven forgive me!-Why, I'll exhibit a bill in the parliament for the putting down of men. How shall I be revenged on him? for revenged I will be, as sure as his guts are made of puddings. Enter Mistress FORD.
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 show to the contrary.
Mrs. Page. 'Faith, but you do, in my mind.
Mrs. Ford. Well, I do then; yet, I say, I could show 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 liest!-Sir Alice Ford !--These 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 knighted.-I shall think the worse of fat men, as long as I have an eye to make difference of mens' liking; And yet he would not swear; prais'd womens' modesty 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 tuns of oil in his belly, ashore at Windsor? How shall I be revenged 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 (sure 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 giantess, and lie under mount Pelion. Well, I will find you twenty lascivious turtles, ere one chaste man. Mrs. Ford. Why, this is the very same; the very hand, the very words: What doth he think of us? Mrs. Page. Nay, I know not: It makes me almost