Imagens das páginas

Ford. Help to search my house this one time: if I find not what I seek, shew no colour for my extremity, let me for ever be your table-sport; let them say of me, As jealous as Ford, that search'd a hollow wall-nut for his wife's leman'. Satisfy 5 me once more, once more search with me.

Mrs. Ford. What hoa, mistress Page! come you and the old woman down; my husband will come into the chamber.

Ford. Old woman! what old woman's that? Mrs. Ford. Why, it is my maid's aunt of Brentford.


Ford. A witch, a quean, an old cozening quean! Have I not forbid her my house? She comes of errands, does she? We are simple men:15 we do not know what's brought to pass under the profession of fortune-telling. She works by charms, by spells, by the figure, and such daubery 2 as this is: beyond our element: we know no thing.Come down, you witch; you hag you,|20| come down I say.

Mrs. Ford. Nay, good sweet husband;-good gentlemen, let him not strike the old woman. Enter Falstaffinwomen's cloaths, led by Mrs. Page. Mrs. Page. Come, mother Prat, come, give 25 me your hand.

Ford. I'll prat her:-Out of my doors, you witch! [Beats him.] you hag, you baggage, you poulcat, you ronyon! out! out! I'll conjure you, I'll fortune-tell you. [Exit Fal. 30

Mrs. Page. Are you not asham'd?" I think, you have kill'd the poor woman.

Mrs. Ford. Nay, he will do it:-Tis a goodly credit for you.

Ford. Hang her, witch!


Eva. By yea and no, I think the 'oman is a witch indeed: I like not when a 'omans has a great peard; I spy a great peard under his muttler. Ford. Will you follow, gentlemen? I beseech you follow; see but the issue of my jealousy: it 40 I cry out thus upon no trail', never trust me when I open again.

Page. Let's obey his humour a little further:Come, gentlemen. [Exeunt. Mrs.Page. Trust me he beat him most pitifully. 45 Mrs. Ford. Nay, by the mass, that he did not; he beat him most unpitiully, methought.

Mrs. Page. I'll have the cudgel hallow'd, and hung o'er the altar; it hath done meritorious service.

Mrs. Ford. What think you? may we, with the warrant of womanhood, and the witness of a good conscience, pursue him with any further revenge?

Mrs. Page. Yea, by all means, if it be but to scrape the figures out of your husband's brains. If they can find in their hearts, the poor unvirtuous fat knight shall be any further afflicted, we two will be still the ministers.

Mrs. Ford. I'll warrant, they'll have him publicly sham'd: and, methinks, there would be no period to the jest, should he not be publicly sham'd.

Mrs. Page. Come, to the forge with it, then, shape it: I would not have things cool. [Exeunt.


The Garter inn.

Enter Host and Bardolph.

Bard. Sir, the Germans desire to have three of your horses: the duke himself will be to-morrow at court, and they are going to meet him.

Host. What duke should that be, comes so secretly? I hear not of him in the court: let me speak with the gentlemen; they speak English? Bard. Sir, I'll call them to you.

Host. They shall have my horses; but I'll make them pay, I'll sauce them: they have had my houses a week at command; I have turn'd away my other guests: they must come off"; I'll sauce them: come. [Exeunt.

Ford's house.

Enter Page, Ford, Mrs. Page, Mrs. Ford, and
Sir Hugh Evans.

Era. 'Tis one of the best discretions of a 'omans as ever I did look upon.

Puge. And did he send you both these letters at an instant?

Mrs. Page. Within a quarter of an hour. Ford. Pardon me, wite: Henceforth do what thou wilt:


I rather will suspect the sun with cold,
Than thee with wantonness: now doth thy honour
In him that was of late an heretic,
As firm as faith.

Page. 'Tis well, 'tis well; no more.
Be not as extreme in submission,
As in offence;

But let our plot go forward; let our wives
50 Yet once again, to make us public sport,
Appoint a meeting with this old fat fellow,
Where we may take him, and disgrace him for it.
Ford.There is nobetterwaythan that theyspokeof.
Page. How? to send him word they'll meet him
in the park

Mrs. Page. The spirit of wantonness is, sure, scar'd out of him; if the devil have him not in fee 55 simple, with fine and recovery, he will never, I think, in the way of waste, attempt us again.

Mrs. Ford. Shall we tell our husbands how we have served him?


At midnight! fie, fie; he will never come.

Eva. You say, he hath been thrown into the rivers; and hath peen grievously peaten, as an old, Poman: methinks, there should be terrors in him,

1 Lover. Leman is derived from leef, Dutch, beloved, and man. 2 Dauberies are disguises. Ronyon, applied to a woman, imports much the same with scall or scab spoken of a man. This expression is borrowed from hunting. Trail is the scent left by the passage of the game. To cry out, is to open or bark. Meaning, there would be no proper catastrophe.

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That is, they


that he should not come: methinks, his flesh is and I will be like a jack-an-apes also, to burn the punish'd, he shall have no desires. knight with my taber. Page. So think I too.

Mrs. Ford. Devise but how you'll use him

when he comes,

And let us two devise to bring him hither.
Mrs. Page. There is an old tale goes, that
Herne the hunter,



Sometime a keeper here in Windsor forest,
Doth all the winter time, at still midnight,
Walk round about an oak, with great ragg'd horns;
And there he blasts the tree, and takes the cattle;
And makes milch-kine yield blood, and shakes a
In a most hideous and dreadful manner: [chain
You have heard of such a spirit; and well you 15
The superstitious idle-headed eld2 [know,
Receiv'd, and did deliver to our age,
This tale of Herne the hunter for a truth. [fear
Page. Why, yet there want not many, that do
In deep of night to walk by this Herne's oak:
But what of this?

Ford. This will be excellent. I'll go buy them


Mrs. Page. My Nan shall be the queen of all the fairies,

Finely attired in a robe of white.

Puge. That silk will I go buy:-and in that time Shall master Slender steal my Nan away, [Aside. And marry her at Eton.Go, send to Falstaff


Ford. Nay, I'll to him again in the name of Brook: He'll tell me all his purpose. Sure, he'll come. Mrs. Page. Fear not you that: Go, get us proAnd tricking for our fairies. [pertiess Eva. Let us about it: It is admirable pleasures, and fery honest knaveries.

[Exeunt Page, Ford, and Evans. Mrs. Page. Go, mistress Ford, 20 Send Quickly to sir John, to know his mind. [Exit Mrs. Ford. I'll to the doctor; he hath my good-will, And none but he, to marry with Nan Page. That Slender, though well-landed, is an ideot; And he my husband best of all affects: The doctor is well-money'd, and his friends Potent at court; he, none but he, shall have her, Though twenty thousand worthier come to crave [Exit.

Mrs. Ford. Marry, this is our device;-
That Falstaff at that oak shall meet with us.
We'll send him word to meet us in the field,
Disguis'd like Herne, with huge horns on his head. 25
Page. Well, let it not be doubted but he'll come,
And in this shape: When you have brought him

What shall be done with him? what is your plot?
Mrs. Page. That likewise we have thought 30
upon, and thus:

Nan Page my daughter, and my little son, [dress
And there are four more of their growth, we'll
Like urchins', ouphes, and fairies, green and white,
With rounds of waxen tapers on their heads,
And rattles in their hands; upon a sudden,
As Falstaff, she, and I, are newly met,
Let them from forth a saw-pit rush at once
With some diffused' song: upon their sight,
We two in great amazedness will fly :
Then let them all encircle him about,
And, fairy-like, to-pinch the unclean knight;
And ask him, why that hour of fairy revel,
In their so sacred paths he dares to tread
In shape profane?"

Mrs. Ford. And till he tell the truth,
Let the supposed fairies pinch him sound,
And burn him with their tapers.

Mrs. Page. The truth being known,
We'll all present ourselves: dis-horn the spirit,
And mock him home to Windsor.

Ford. The children must

Be practis'd well to this, or they'll ne'er do't.
Eva. I will teach the children their behaviours;[




The Garter inn.
Enter Host and Simple.

Host. What would'st thou have, boor? what, thick-skin? speak, breathe, discuss; brief, short, quick, snap.

Simp. Marry, sir, I come to speak with sir John Falstaff from master Slender.

Host. There's his chamber, his house, his castle, 40 his standing-bed, and truckle-bed'; 'tis painted about with the story of the prodigal, fresh and new; Go, knock and call; he'll speak like an Anthropophaginian unto thee: Knock, I say.

Simp. There's an old woman, a fat woman, 45 gone up into his chamber; P'll be so bold as stay, sir, 'till she come down: I come to speak with her, indeed.

Host. Ha! a fat woman! the knight may be robb'd: I'll call.- Bully knight! Bully sir 50 John! speak from thy lungs military: Art thou there? It is thine host, thine Ephesian, calls.

Falstaff above.

Fal. How now, mine host?

Host. Here's a Bohemian Tartar' tarries the

To take, here means to seize or strike with a disease. Meaning, age. 3 Urchin is a hedgelog; but is here used to signify any thing little and dwarfish. Ouph is a fairy or goblin. * Dr. Warburton says, this signifies a song that strikes out into wild sentiments beyond the bounds of nature, such as those whose subject is fairy land. Properties are incidental necessaries to a theatre, exclusive of scenes and dresses. To trick, is to dress out. 'The usual furniture of chambers in those times consisted of a standing bed, under which was a truckle, or running bed. In the former lay the master, and in the latter the servant. That is, a Cannibal. The Host uses this high-sounding word to astonish Simple; an effect which he probably likewise means to produce by the word Ephesian, which follows. See the preceding note.



coming down of thy fat woman: Let her descend, bully, let her descend; my chambers are honourable: Fie! privacy? fie!

Enter Falstaff.

Fal. There was, mine host, an old fat woman even now, with me; but she's gone.

Simp. Pray you, sir, was't not the wise woman of Brentford?

Fal. Ay, marry was it, mussel-shell'; What would you with her?

Simp. My master, sir, master Slender, sent to her, seeing her go through the street, to know, sir, whether one Nym, sir, that beguil'd him of a chain, had the chain, or no.

Fal. I spake with the old woman about it.
Simp. And what says she, I pray, sir?

Fal. Marry, she says, that the very same man, that beguil'd master Slender of his chain, cozen'd him of it.


horses and money. I tell you for good-will, look
you: you are wise, and full of gibes and vlouting-
stogs; and 'tis not convenient you should be co-
zen'd: Fare you well.
Enter Caius.

Caius. Vere is mine Host de Jarterre?
Host. Here, master doctor, in perplexity, and
doubtful dilemma.

Cuius. I cannot tell vat is dat : But it is tell-a10me, dat you make a grand preparation for a duke de Jamany: by my trot, dere is no duke, dat de court is know, to come: I tell you for good-vill: adieu. [Exit. Host. Hue and cry, villain, go! assist me, knight; I am undone :-fly, run, hue and cry, villain! I'm undone ! [Exit.


Simp. I would I could have spoken with the 20 woman herself; I had other things to have spoken with her too, from him.

Fal. What are they? let us know.
Host. Ay, come; quick.

Simp. I may not conceal them, sir,
Fal. Conceal them, or thou dy'st.

Simp. Why, sir, they were nothing but about mistress Anne Page; to know, if it were my master's fortune to have her, or no.

Fal. 'Tis, 'tis his fortune.
Simp. What, sir?

Fal. To have her-or no: Go; say the woman told me so.

Simp. May I be so bold to say so, sir?
Fal. Ay, sir Tike: like who more bold.
Sim. I thank your worship: I shall make my
master glad with these tidings. [Exit Simple.
Host. Thou art clerkly', thou art clerkly, sir
John: Was there a wise woman with thee?

Ful. I would all the world might be cozen'd; for I have been cozen'd, and beaten too. If it should come to the ear of the court, how I have been transform'd, and how my transformation hath been wash'd and cudgel'd, they would melt me out of my fat, drop by drop, and liquor fishermen's boots with me: I warrant, they would whip me with their fine wits, till I were as crest25 faln as a dry'd pear. I never prosper'd since I foreswore myself at Primero'. Well, if my wind were but long enough to say my prayers, I would [repent.Enter Mistress Quickly.

30 Now! whence came you?


Fal, Ay, that there was, mine host; one, that 40 hath taught me more wit than ever I learn'd before in my life; and I paid nothing for it neither, but was paid for my learning.

Enter Bardolph.

Bard. Out, alas, sir! cozenage! mere cozenage! 45 Host. Where be my horses! speak well of them, varletto.

Bard. Run away with the cozeners: for so soon as I came beyond Eaton, they threw me off, from behind one of them, in a slough of mire; and set spurs, and away, like three German devils, three Doctor Faustus's.

Host. They are gone but to meet the duke, villain: do not say, they are fled; Germans are honest men.

Enter Sir Hugh Evans.

Eva. Where is mine host?
Host. What is the matter, sir?

Quick. From the two parties, forsooth.

Fal. The devil take one party, and his dam the other, and so they shall be both bestow'd! I have suffer'd more for their sakes, more, than the villainous inconstancy of man's disposition is able to bear.

Quic. And have not they suffer'd? yes, I warrant; speciously one of them; mistress Ford, good heart, is beaten black and blue, that you cannot see a white spot about her.

Fal. What tell'st thou me of black and blue? I was beaten myself into all the colours of the rainbow; and I was like to be apprehended for the witch of Brentford; but that my admirable dexterity of wit, counterfeiting the action of an old woman, deliver'd me, the knave constable had set me i' the stocks, i' the common stocks, for a witch.

Quic. Sir, let me speak with you in your cham50ber: you shall hear how things go; and, I warrant, to your content. Here is a letter will say somewhat. Good hearts, what ado is here to bring you together! sure one of you does not serve heaven well, that you are so cross'd. Fal. Come up into my chamber. [Exeunt. SCENE VI.


Eva. Have a care of your entertainments: there is a friend of mine come to town, tells me, there 60 is three couzin-germans, that has cozen'd all the hosts of Readings, of Maidenhead, of Colebrook, of

Enter Fenton and Host.

Host. Master Fenton, talk not to me; my mind is heavy, I will give over all.

Fent. Yet hear me speak: Assist me in my purpose,

Falstaff probably calls Simple muss l-shell, from his standing with his mouth open. ? That is,

scholar-like. A game at cards.


And, as I am a gentleman, I'll give thee
A hundred pound in gold, more than your loss.
Host. I will hear you, master Fenton; and I will,
at the least, keep your counsel.

Fent. From time to time I have acquainted you
With the dear love I bear to fair Anne Page;
Who, mutually, hath answer'd my affection
(So far forth as herself might he her chuser)
Even to my wish: I have a letter from her
Of such contents as you will wonder at;
The mirth whereof's so larded with my matter,
That neither, singly, can be manifested,
Without the shew of both: Fat sir John Falstaff
Hath a great scene; the image of the jest


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[Shewing a letter. 15
I'll shew you here at large. Hark, good mine
To-night at Herne's oak, just 'twixt twelve and
Must my sweet Nan present the fairy queen;
The purpose why, is here; in which disguise,
While other jests are something rank on foot,
Her father hath commanded her to slip
Away with Slender, and with him at Eaton [sir,
Immediately to marry: she hath consented: now,
Her mother even strong against that match,
And firm for doctor Caius, hath appointed
That he shall likewise shuffle her away,


(For they must all be mask'd and vizarded)
That quaint' in green, she shall be loose enrob'd,
With ribbands pendant, flaring 'bout her head;
And when the doctor spies his vantage ripe,
To pinch her by the hand, and, on that token,
The maid hath given consent to go with him.
Host. Which means she to deceive? father or

Fent. Both, my good host, to go along with me;
And here it rests,-that you'll procure the vicar
To stay for me at church, 'twixt twelve and one,
And, in the lawful name of marrying,

To give our hearts united ceremony.

[vicar: Host. Well, husband your device; I'll to the Bring you the maid, you shall not lack a priest. Fent. So shall I evermore be bound to thee; Besides I'll make a present recompence.[Exeunt.



Enter Falstaff and Mrs. Quickly.
Fal. PRYTHEE, no more pratling;-go.

35shape of man, master Brook, I fear not Goliah
with a weaver's beam; because I know also,
life is a shuttle. I am in haste; go along with
me; I'll tell you all, master Brook. Since I
pluck'd geese, play'd truant, and whipp'd top, I
knew not what 'twas to be beaten, till lately.
Follow me: I'll tell you strange things of this
knave Ford; on whom to-night I will be re-
veng'd, and I will deliver his wife into your hand.
-Follow: Strange things in hand, master Brook!

I'll hold: This is the third time: I hope good luck lies in odd numbers. Away, go; they 40 say there is divinity in odd numbers, either in nativity, chance or death.-Away.

Quic. I'll provide you a chain; and I'll do what
I can to get you a pair of horns. [Ex. Mrs. Quickly.
Fal. Away, I say; time wears: hold up your 45
head, and mince '.

Enter Ford.

How now, master Brook? Master Brook, the
matter will be known to-night, or never. Be you
in the Park about midnight, at Herne's oak, and 50
you shall see wonders.

Ford. Went you not to her yesterday, sir, as you told me you had appointed?

Fal. I went to her, master Brook, as you see, like a poor old man: but I came from her, mas-55 ter Brook, like a poor old woman. That same knave, Ford her husband, hath the finest mad devil of jealousy in him, master Brook, that ever govern'd frenzy. I will tell you.-He beat me grievously, in the shape of a woman; for in the 60

Windsor Park.

Enter Page, Shallow, and Slender. Page. Come, come; we'll couch i' the castleditch, till we see the light of our fairies.-Remember, son Slender, my daughter.

Slen. Ay, forsooth; I have spoke with her, and we have a nay-word how to know one another. I come to her in white, and cry, mum; she cries, budget; and by that we know one another.

Shal. That's good too: But what needs either your mum, or her budget? the white will decipher her well enough.-It hath sruck ten o'clock.

Page. The night is dark; light and spirits will Even here means as. • Perhaps we As quaint signifies fantastical, the meaning may be, fantastically drest in To mince is to walk with affected delicacy. ? That is, a watch-word.

That is, the representation. 2 In the letter. should read denote.



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SCENE III. Enter Mistress Page, Mistress Ford, and Dr.Caius. Mrs. Page. Master doctor, my daughter is in green: when you see your time, take her by the hand, away with her to the deanery, and dispatch it quickly: Go before into the park; we two must go together.



Caius. I know vat I have to do; Adieu. [Erit. Mrs. Page. Fare you well, sir. My husband will not rejoice so much at the abuse of Falstaff, as he will chafe at the doctor's marrying my daugh-15 ter: but 'tis no matter; better a little chiding, than a great deal of heart-break.

Mrs. Ford. Where is Nan now, and her troop of fairies? and the Welch devil Evans?

Mrs. Page. They are all couch'd in a pit hard by Herne's oak, with obscur'd lights; which, at 20 the very instant of Falstaff's and our meeting, they will at once display to the night.

Mrs. Ford. That cannot chuse but amaze him. Mrs. Page. If he be not amaz'd, he will be mock'd; if he be amaz'd, he will every way be



Mrs. Ford. We'll betray him finely. [lechery, Mrs. Page. Against such lewdsters, and their Those that betray them do no treachery. Mrs. Ford. The hour draws on; To the oak, to 30 the oak! [Exeunt.


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Enter Mrs. Ford and Mrs. Page. Mrs. Ford. Sir John? art thou there, my dear? my male deer?

Fal. My doe with the black scut?-Let the sky rain potatoes, let it thunder to the tune of Green Sleeves; hail kissing-comtits, and snow eringoes; let there come a tempest of provocation, I will shelter me here.

Mrs. Ford. Mistress Page is. come with me, sweetheart.

Ful. Divide me like a bribe-buck, eacha haunch: I will keep my sides to myself, my shoulders for the fellow of this walk, and my horns I bequeath like Herne the hunter?-Why, now is Cupid a your husbands. Am I woodman? ha! Speak I child of conscience; he makes restitution. As I am a true spirit, welcome! [Noise within.

Mrs. Page. Alas! what noise?
Mrs. Ford. Heaven forgive our sins!
Fal. What shall this be?
Mrs. Ford.

Mrs. Page: Away, away.[The women run out.

Fal. I think the devil will not have me damn'd' lest the oil that is in me should set hell on fire; he never would else cross me thus.

Enter Sir Hugh like a satyr ; Quickly, and others dress'd like fairies, with tapers.

Quick. Fairies, black, grey, green, and white, You moon-shine revellers, and shades of night, You orphan-heirs of fixed destiny, Attend your office, and your quality.— Crier Hobgoblin, make the fairy o-yes.


Eva. Elves, list your names; silence, you airy Cricket, to Windsor chimnies shalt thou leap : 35 Where fires thou find'st unrak'd, and hearths unThere pinch the maids as blue as bilberry"; [swept, Our radiant queen hates sluts, and sluttery. [die: Fal. They are fairies; he, that speaks to them, shall I'll wink and couch: No man their works must eye. [Lies down upon his face. Eva. Where's Bede ?-Go you, and where you find a maid,


Enter Falstaff with a buck's head on. Fal. The Windsor bell hath struck twelve; the minute draws on: Now, the hot-blooded gods assist me!-Remember, Jove, thou wast a bull for thy Europa; love set on thy horns.-Oh powerful love! that, in some respects, makes a beast a man, 45 in some other, a man a beast.-You were also, Jupiter, a swan, for the love of Leda;-Qh, omnipotent love! how near the god drew to the complexion of a goose!—A fault done first in the form of a beast;-O Jove, a beastly fault!-and then 50 another fault in the semblance of a fowl;-think on't, Jove; a foul fault. When gods have hot backs, what shall poor men do? For me, I am here a Windsor stag; and the fattest, I think, '55 the forest: Send me a cool rut-time, Jove, or who can blame me to piss my tallow? Who comes here? my doe?


That, ere she sleep, hath thrice her prayers said,
Rein up the organs of her fantasy,
Sleep she as sound as careless infancy:
But those as sleep,and think not on their sins, [shins,
Pinch them, arms, legs, backs, shoulders, sides, and
Quick. About, about;

Search Windsor castle, elves, within and out:
Strew good luck, ouphes, on every sacred room;
That it may stand till the perpetual doom,
In state as wholsome as in state'tis fit;
Worthy the owner, and the owner it.
The several chairs of order look you scour
With juice of balm, and every precious flower:
Each fair instalment coat, and several crest,
With loyal blazon, evermore be blest!

1 A technical phrase spoken of bucks who grow lean after rutting-time, and may be applied to men. Potatoes, when they were first introduced in England, were supposed to be strong provocatives. Sugar pluins perfum'd to make the breath sweet. That is, for the keeper of this district. By custom, the shoulders and humbles were a perquisite of the keeper's. The whortleberry, called bilberry in Staffordshire, and on which the More game feed. That is, elevate her ideas above sensual desires and imaginations. Wholsome here signifies entire or perfect.



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