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Will. Forsooth, I have forgot.

Eva. It is ki, , cod; if you forget your kies, your kas,' and your cods, you must be preeches. Go your ways, and play, go.

Mrs. Page. He is a better scholar, than I thought he was.

Eva. He is a good sprag memory. Farewell, mistress Page.

Mrs. Page. Adieu, good fir Hugh. [Exit Sir Hugh.] Get you home, boy.-Come, we stay too long

[Exeunt, Ş CENE II. A Room in Ford's House.

Enter Falstaff and Mrs. Ford. FAL. Mistress Ford, your sorrow hath eaten up my sufferance: I fee, you are obsequious in your love, and I profess requital to a hair's breadth ; not


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your kies, your kæs, &c.] All this ribaldry is likewise found in Taylor the water-poet. See fol, edit. p. 106.

STEEVENS. - you must be preeches.] Sir Hugh means to fay—you must he breech'd, i. e. flogg'd. To breech is to flog. So, in The Taming of the Shrewi

“ I am no breeching scholar in the schools." Again, in The Humorous Lieutenant, By Beaumont and Fletcher :

Cry like a breech'd boy, not eat a bit.” STEEVENS.

Sprag -] I am told that this word is ftill used by the common people in the neighbourhood of Bath, where it signifies rrady, alert, sprightly, and is pronounced as if it was written-sprack.

STEEVENS. A spackt lad or wench, says Ray, is apt to learn, ingenious. REED.

9 - your forrow hath eaten up my sufferance: I fee, you are obsequious in your love,] So, in Hamlet :

for some term “ To do obsequious forrow." The epithet obsequious refers, in both instances, to the seriousness with which obfequies, or funeral ceremonies, are performed. STEEVENS, only, mistress Ford, in the simple office of love, but in all the accoutrement, complement, and ceremony of it. But are you sure of your husband now?

Mrs. FORD. He's a birding, sweet fir John.

Mrs. Page. [Within.] What hoa, gossip Ford! what hoa ! Mrs. Ford. Step into the chamber, sir John.

[Exit FalstAFP. Enter Mrs. Page. Mrs. Page. How now, sweetheart? who's at home besides yourself?

Mrs. FORD. Why, none but mine own people.
MRS. PAGE. Indeed?
Mrs. Ford. No, certainly:--Speak louder. [ Aside.

Mrs. Page. Truly, I am so glad you have nobody here.

Mrs. FORD. Why?

Mrs. PAGE. Why, woman, your husband is in his old lunes again : he so takes on yonder with my husband; fo rails against all married mankind; so curses all Eve's daughters, of what complexion soever; and so buffets himself on the forehead, crying, Peer-out, peer-out !+ that any madness, I


lunes - ) i. e. lunacy, frenzy. See a note on The Winter's Tale, Act II. sc. ii. The folio, reads-lines, instead of lunes. The elder quartos-his old vaine again. STEVENS.

The correction was made by Mr. Theobald. MALONE.

3 he fo takes on -] To take on, which is now used for ta grieve, seems to be used by our author for to rage. Perhaps it was applied to any passion. JOHNSON.

It is used by Nath in Pierce Penniless his Supplication to the Devil, 1592, in the same fense: “ Some will take on like a madman, if they fee a pig come to the table.” MALONE.

4- Peer-sut !] That is, appear horns. Shakspeare is at his old lunes. JOHNSON.


ever yet beheld, seem'd but tameness, civility, and patience, to this distemper he is in now: I am glad the fat knight is not here.

Mrs. FORD. Why, does he talk of him?

Mrs. Page. Of none but him ; and swears, he was carried out, the last time he search'd for him, in a basket : protests to my husband, he is now here; and hath drawn him and the rest of their company from their sport, to make another experiment of his suspicion : but I am glad the knight is not here; now he shall see his own foolery.

Mrs. Ford. How near is he, mistress Page ?

Mrs. Page. Hard by; at street end; he will be here anon.

Mrs. Ford. I am undone !-the knight is here.

Mrs. Page. Why, then you are utterly shamed, and he's but a dead man. What a woman are you?

-Away with him, away with him; better shame than murder.

Mrs. Ford.Which way should he go? how should I bestow him? Shall I put him into the basket again?

Re-enter FALSTAFF.

FAL. No, I'll come no more i' the basket: May I not go out, ere he come?

Mrs. Page. Alas, three of master Ford's brothers watch the door with pistols,' that none shall issue

Shakspeare here refers to the practice of children, when they call on a snail to push forth his horns :

“ Peer out, peer out, peer out of your hole,

Or else I'll beat you black as a coal.” HENLEY. 5 - watch the door with pistols,] This is one of Shakspeare's anachronisms. Douce.

out; otherwise you might flip away cre he came. But what make

you here? 6 Fal. What shall I do?-I'll creep up into the chimney.

Mrs. Ford. There they always use to discharge their birding-pieces: Creep into the kiln-hole.

FAL. Where is it?

Mrs. Ford. He will seek there on my word. Neither press, coffer, chest, trunk, well, vault, but he hath an abstract for the remembrance of such places, and goes to them by his note: There is no hiding you in the house.

FAL. I'll go out then.

Mrs.Page. If you go out in your own semblance, you die, fir John. Unless you go out disguis’d, Thus, in Pericles, Prince of Tyre, Thaliard says,

if I “ Can get him once within my piftol's length," &c. and Thaliard was one of the courtiers of Antiochus the third, who reigned 200 years before Christ; a period rather too early for the use of pistols. Steevens.

But what make you here?] i. e. what do you here. MALONE. The same phrase occurs in the first scene of As you

like it : “ Now, fir! what make you here?STEEVENS.

creep into the kiln-hole.] I suspect, these words belong to Mrs. Page. See Mrs. Ford's next speech. That, however, may be a second thought; a correction of her former proposal : but the other supposition is more probable. MALONE.

- an abstract - ] i. e. a list, an inventory. Steevens. Rather, a short note or description. So, in Hamlet : • The abstract, and brief chronicle of the times."

MALONB. 9. Mrs. Page. If you go, &c.] In the first folio, by the mistake of the compolitor, the name of Mrs. Ford is prefixed to this speech and the next. For the correction now made I am answerable. The editor of the second folio put the two speeches together, and gave them both to Mrs. Ford. The threat of danger from without ascertains the first to belong to Mrs. Page. See her speech on Falstaff's re-entrance.


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Mrs. Ford. How might we disguise him?

Mrs. Page. Alas the day, I know not. There is no woman's gown big enough for him; otherwise, he might put on a hat, a muffler, and a kerchief, and so escape.

Fal. Good hearts, devise something: any extremity, rather than a mischief.

Mrs. Ford. My maid's aunt, the fat woman of Brentford, has a gown above.

Mrs. Page. On my word, it will serve him; she's as big as he is: and there's her thrum'd hat, and her muffler too :Run up, fir John.

Mrs. Ford. Go, go, sweet fir John: mistress Page, and I, will look some linen for your head.

Mrs. Pace. Quick, quick; we'll come dress you straight : put on the gown the while.

[Exit FALSTAFF. Mrs. Ford. I would, my husband would meet him in this shape: he cannot abide the old woman of Brentford; he swears, she's a witch; forbade her my house, and hath threaten'd to beat her.

- her thrum'd hat, and her muffler too:] The thrum is the end of a weaver's warp, and we may suppose, was used for the purpose of making coarse hats. So, in A Midsummer Night's Dream:

« O fates, come, come,

“ Cut thread and brum." A muffler was fome part of dress that covered the face. So, in The Cobler's Prophecy, 1594:

“ Now is the bare fac'd to be seen :-strait on her Muffler goes."

Again, in Laneham's account of Queen Elizabeth's entertainment at Kenelworth castle, 1575:

" - his mother lent him a nu muflar for a napkin, that was tyed to hiz gyrdl for lozyng." STEEVENS.

The muffler was a part of female attire, which only covered the lower half of the face. Douce.

A thrum'd hat was made of very coarse woollen cloth. See Mintheu's Dict. 1617, in v. Thrum'd is, formed of thrums.


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