The Merry Wiues of Windsor

by

William Shakespeare

Free Public Domain Books from the
Classic Literature Library

The Merry Wiues of Windsor Page 01

Actus primus, Scena prima.

Enter Iustice Shallow, Slender, Sir Hugh Euans, Master Page, Falstoffe, Bardolph, Nym, Pistoll, Anne Page, Mistresse Ford, Mistresse Page, Simple.

Shallow. Sir Hugh, perswade me not: I will make a StarChamber matter of it, if hee were twenty Sir Iohn Falstoffs, he shall not abuse Robert Shallow Esquire

Slen. In the County of Glocester, Iustice of Peace and Coram

Shal. I (Cosen Slender) and Custalorum

Slen. I, and Ratolorum too; and a Gentleman borne (Master Parson) who writes himselfe Armigero, in any Bill, Warrant, Quittance, or Obligation, Armigero

Shal. I that I doe, and haue done any time these three hundred yeeres

Slen. All his successors (gone before him) hath don't: and all his Ancestors (that come after him) may: they may giue the dozen white Luces in their Coate

Shal. It is an olde Coate

Euans. The dozen white Lowses doe become an old Coat well: it agrees well passant: It is a familiar beast to man, and signifies Loue

Shal. The Luse is the fresh-fish, the salt-fish, is an old Coate

Slen. I may quarter (Coz)

Shal. You may, by marrying

Euans. It is marring indeed, if he quarter it

Shal. Not a whit

Euan. Yes per-lady: if he ha's a quarter of your coat, there is but three Skirts for your selfe, in my simple coniectures; but that is all one: if Sir Iohn Falstaffe haue committed disparagements vnto you, I am of the Church and will be glad to do my beneuolence, to make attonements and compremises betweene you

Shal. The Councell shall heare it, it is a Riot

Euan. It is not meet the Councell heare a Riot: there is no feare of Got in a Riot: The Councell (looke you) shall desire to heare the feare of Got, and not to heare a Riot: take your vizaments in that

Shal. Ha; o'my life, if I were yong againe, the sword should end it

Euans. It is petter that friends is the sword, and end it: and there is also another deuice in my praine, which peraduenture prings goot discretions with it. There is Anne Page, which is daughter to Master Thomas Page, which is pretty virginity

Slen. Mistris Anne Page? she has browne haire, and speakes small like a woman

Euans. It is that ferry person for all the orld, as iust as you will desire, and seuen hundred pounds of Moneyes, and Gold, and Siluer, is her Grand-sire vpon his deathsbed, (Got deliuer to a ioyfull resurrections) giue, when she is able to ouertake seuenteene yeeres old. It were a goot motion, if we leaue our pribbles and prabbles, and desire a marriage betweene Master Abraham, and Mistris Anne Page

Slen. Did her Grand-sire leaue her seauen hundred pound? Euan. I, and her father is make her a petter penny

Slen. I know the young Gentlewoman, she has good gifts

Euan. Seuen hundred pounds, and possibilities, is goot gifts

Shal. Wel, let vs see honest Mr Page: is Falstaffe there? Euan. Shall I tell you a lye? I doe despise a lyer, as I doe despise one that is false, or as I despise one that is not true: the Knight Sir Iohn is there, and I beseech you be ruled by your well-willers: I will peat the doore for Mr. Page. What hoa? Got-plesse your house heere

Mr.Page. Who's there? Euan. Here is go't's plessing and your friend, and Iustice Shallow, and heere yong Master Slender: that peraduentures shall tell you another tale, if matters grow to your likings

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