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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, gone. up into his chamber; I'll be to bold as stay, Sir, 'till she come down : I come to speak with her, indeed.
Hoft. Ha! a fat woman ? the knight may be robbid ; 111 call. Bully-knight! bujiy Sir John! speak from thy lungs military: art thou there? ir is thine host, thine Ephesian † calls.'
Falstaff above. Fal. How now,
mine host? Hoft. Here's a Bohemian-Tartar tarries the coming down of thy fat woman : let her descend, bully, let her descend; my chambers are honourable. Fy, privacy ? fy.
Enter Falstaff. Fal. There was, - mine host, an old fat woman even now with me, but she's gone.
Sinip. Pray you, Sir, was't not the wise woman of Brainford ?
Fal. Ay, marry was it, mussel-Shell , what? would you with her ?
Simp. My master, Sir, my master Slender sent to her, seeing her go through the street, to know, Sir, whether one Nym, Sir, that beguild him of a. chain, had the chain or no.
Fal. I spake with the old woman about it. .
* The usual furniture of chambers in that time, was a. standing bed, under which was a trochle, truckle or running bed. Fohnfon.
+ He means to say, thine Ephestian.
# He calls poor Simple muilel-shell, because he stands. with his mouth open. Johnson.
that beguild Master Slender of his chain, cozen'd himn of it.
Sinip. I would I could have spoken with the woman herself; I had other things to have spoken with her too, from him.
Fal. What are they? let us know.
Fal. 'Tis, 'tis his fortune.
Fal. To have her, or no: go; say the woman told me fo.
Simp. May I be so bold to say fo, Sir?
Simp. Thank your worship: I shall make my master glad with these tidings. [Exit Simple.
Hojt. Thou art clarkly, thou art clarkly, Sir John: was there a wise woman with thee?
Fal. Ay, that there was, mine hoft; one that hath taught me more wit than erer I learned before in my life ; and I paid nothing for it neither, but was paid for my learning.
S CE N E
IX. Enter Bardolph. Bard. Out, alas, Sir, cozenage ? mere cozenage!
Hoft. 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 fough of mire, and fet fpurs, and away, like three German devils, three Doctor Fauitus's.
Hofi. They are gone but to meet the Duke, vil. lain; do not say they are fled; Germans are honest meli.
Eva. Have a care of your entertainments; thereis a friend o' mine come to town, tells ine, there is three cozen-jermans that has cozen'd all the hosts of Reading, of Maidenhead, of Colebrook, of horses and money. I tell you for good will, look you; you are wise, and full of gibes and vloutingstocks, and 'tis not convenient you should be cozen'd; fare you well.
[Exit. Enter Caius. Caius. Ver is mine host de Jarterre ?
Hoft. Here, Master Doctor, in perplexity and doubtful dilemma.
Caius. I cannot tell vat is dat ; but it is tell-ame dat you make a grand preparation for a duke de Jarmany; by my trot, der is no duke, dat the court is know, to come. I tell you for good will; adieu.
[Exit. Həft. Hue and cry, villain, go! aslist me, knight, I am undone; fly, run, hue and cry! villain, I am undone !
[Exit. Fal. I would all the world might be cozen'd, for I have been cozened and beaten too. If it Thould come to the ear of the court how I have been transformed, and how my transformation hath been wall’d and cudgeld, they would melt me out of my fat, drop by drop, and liquor filhermen's boats with me. I warrant they would whip me with their fine wits, 'till I were as crest-fall'n as a dry'd pear. I never prosper'd since I forswore myself at Primero *. Well, if my wind were but lang enough to say my prayers, I would repent.
game at cards. Johnson.
SC E N E X.
Enter Mistress Quickly. Now, whence come you?
Quic. 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 fakes, more than the villainous inconftancy 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 Brainford; but that my admirable dexterity of wit, counterfeiting the action of an old + woman, deliver'd me : the knave constable had set me i’ th’ stocks, i' th' common stocks, for a witch.
Quic. Sir, let me speak with you in your chamber; you shall hear how things go, and, I warrant, to your content. Here is a letter will say fomewhat. Good hearts, what ado is here to bring you together? sure one of you does not serve heav'n well, that you are so cross d.
Fal. Come up into my chamber. [Exeunt.
S CE N E XI.
Enter Fenton and Host. Hoft. 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,
of The text mult certainly be restored, a wood woman, a crazy, frantic woman; one too wild, and filly, and unmeaning, to have either the malice, or mischievous fubtilty of a witch in her. Theobald.
And, as am a gentleman, I'll give thee
Hoft. 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 be her chuler) Ev'n 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 few of both. Fat Sir John Falstaff Hath a great scene; the image of the jest
[Shewing a letter. I'll New you here at large. Hark, good mine host; To night at Herne's oak, just’twixt twelve and one, Must my sweet Nan present the Fairy queen; The purpose why, is here ; in which dilguise, While other jests are something rank on foot, Her father hath commanded her to slip Away with Slender, and with him at Eaton Immediately to marry; she hath consented..
Now, Sir, Her mother, ever strong against that match, And firm for Doctor Caius, hath appointed That he shall likewise shuffle her away, While other sports are talking of their minds; And at the deanry, where a priest attends, Straight marry her; to this her mother's plot She, seemingly obedient, likewise hath Made promise to the Doctor. - Now, thus it rests 9 Her father means she shall be all in white, And in that dreis, when Slender sees his time To take her by the hand, and bid her go, She shall go with him.-Her mother hath intended, The better to devote her to the Doctor, (For they must all be mask'd and vizarded) That
, quaint in green, she shall be loose enrobid, 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,