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3 Serv. What raiment will your honour wear today?
Sly. I am Christophero Sly; call not me-honour, nor lordship: I ne'er drank sack in my life; and if you give me any conserves, give me conserves of beef: Ne'er ask me what raiment I'll wear; for I have no more doublets than backs, no more stockings than legs, nor no more shoes than feet; nay, sometimes, more feet than shoes, or such shoes as my toes look through the overleather.
Lord. Heaven cease this idle humour in your ho
O, that a mighty man, of such descent,
Sly. What, would you make me mad? Am not I Christopher Sly, old Sly's son of Burton-heath; by birth a pedler, by education a card-maker, by transmutation a bear-herd, and now by present profession
tinker? Ask Marian Hacket, the fat alewife of Wincot, if she know me not: if she say I am not fourteen pence on the score for sheer ale, score me up for the lying'st knave in Christendom. What, I am not bestraught: Here's
1 Serv. O, this it is that makes your lady mourn. 2 Serv. O, this it is that makes your servants droop.
Lord. Hence comes it that your kindred shun
As beaten hence by your strange lunacy.
And banish hence these abject lowly dreams:
And twenty caged nightingales do sing:
On purpose trimm'd up for Semiramis.
Say, thou wilt walk; we will bestrew the ground:
Above the morning lark: Or wilt thou hunt? Thy hounds shall make the welkin answer them, And fetch shrill echoes from the hollow earth.
1 Serv. Say, thou wilt course; thy greyhounds are as swift
As breathed stags, ay, fleeter than the roe.
2 Serv. Dost thou love pictures? we will fetch thee straight
Adonis, painted by a running brook;
And Cytherea all in sedges hid;
Which seem to move and wanton with her breath,
Even as the waving sedges play with wind.
As lively painted as the deed was done.
3 Serv. Or Daphne, roaming through a thorny
Scratching her legs, that one shall swear she bleeds:
And at that sight shall sad Apollo weep,
So workmanly the blood and tears are drawn. Lord. Thou art a lord, and nothing but a lord: Thou hast a lady far more beautiful
Than any woman in this waning age.
1 Serv. And, till the tears, that she hath shed for
Like envious floods, o'er-ran her lovely face,
Sly. Am I a lord? and have I such a lady?
I smell sweet savours, and I feel soft things:-
And not a tinker, nor Christophero Sly.-
2 Sero. Will't please your mightiness to wash your hands?
[Servants present an ewer, bason, and napkin.
O, how we joy to see your wit restor❜d!
O, that once more you knew but what you are!
1 Serv. O, yes, my lord; but very idle words:For though you lay here in this goodly chamber, Yet would you say, ye were beaten out of door; And rail upon the hostess of the house;
say, you would present her at the leet,
Because she brought stone jugs, and no seal'd quarts: Sometimes, you would call out for Cicely Hacket. Sly. Ay, the woman's maid of the house.
3 Serv. Why, sir, you know no house, nor no such maid;
Nor no such men, as you have reckon'd up,—
Sly. Now, Lord be thanked for my good amends!
Sly. I thank thee; thou shalt not lose by it.
Enter the Page, as a lady, with Attendants. Page. How fares my noble lord?
Sly. Marry, I fare well; for here is cheer enough. Where is my wife?
Page. Here, noble lord; What is thy will with
Sly. Are you my wife, and will not call mehusband?
My men should call me-lord; I am your good
Page. My husband and my lord, my lord and husband;
I am your wife in all obedience.
Sly. I know it well:-What must I call her?
Sly. Al'ce madam, or Joan madam?
Lord. Madam, and nothing else; so lords call
Sly. Madam wife, they say, that I have dream'd, and slept
Above some fifteen year and more.
Page. Ay, and the time seems thirty unto me; Being all this time abandon'd from your bed. Sly. 'Tis much;--Servants, leave me and her alone.
Madam, undress you, and come now to bed.
Page. Thrice noble lord, let me entreat of you,
For your physicians have expressly charg'd,
Sly. Ay, it stands so, that I may hardly tarry so long. But I would be loth to fall into dreams my again; I will therefore tarry, in despite of the flesh and the blood.'
Enter a Servant.
Sero. Your honour's players, hearing your amendment,
Are come to play a pleasant comedy,
For so your doctors hold it very meet;
Seeing too much sadness hath congeal'd your blood,
Sly. Marry, I will; let them play it: Is not a commonty a Christmas gambol, or a tumbling trick?