Page. How now Master Ford? For. You heard what this knaue told me, did you not? Page. Yes, and you heard what the other told me? Ford. Doe you thinke there is truth in them? Pag. Hang 'em slaues: I doe not thinke the Knight would offer it: But these that accuse him in his intent towards our wiues, are a yoake of his discarded men: very rogues, now they be out of seruice

Ford. Were they his men? Page. Marry were they

Ford. I like it neuer the beter for that, Do's he lye at the Garter? Page. I marry do's he: if hee should intend this voyage toward my wife, I would turne her loose to him; and what hee gets more of her, then sharpe words, let it lye on my head

Ford. I doe not misdoubt my wife: but I would bee loath to turne them together: a man may be too confident: I would haue nothing lye on my head: I cannot be thus satisfied

Page. Looke where my ranting-Host of the Garter comes: there is eyther liquor in his pate, or mony in his purse, when hee lookes so merrily: How now mine Host? Host. How now Bully-Rooke: thou'rt a Gentleman Caueleiro Iustice, I say

Shal. I follow, (mine Host) I follow: Good-euen, and twenty (good Master Page.) Master Page, wil you go with vs? we haue sport in hand

Host. Tell him Caueleiro-Iustice: tell him Bully-Rooke

Shall. Sir, there is a fray to be fought, betweene Sir Hugh the Welch Priest, and Caius the French Doctor

Ford. Good mine Host o'th' Garter: a word with you

Host. What saist thou, my Bully-Rooke? Shal. Will you goe with vs to behold it? My merry Host hath had the measuring of their weapons; and (I thinke) hath appointed them contrary places: for (beleeue mee) I heare the Parson is no Iester: harke, I will tell you what our sport shall be

Host. Hast thou no suit against my Knight? my guest-Caualeire? Shal. None, I protest: but Ile giue you a pottle of burn'd sacke, to giue me recourse to him, and tell him my name is Broome: onely for a iest

Host. My hand, (Bully:) thou shalt haue egresse and regresse, (said I well?) and thy name shall be Broome. It is a merry Knight: will you goe An-heires? Shal. Haue with you mine Host

Page. I haue heard the French-man hath good skill in his Rapier

Shal. Tut sir: I could haue told you more: In these times you stand on distance: your Passes, Stoccado's, and I know not what: 'tis the heart (Master Page) 'tis heere, 'tis heere: I haue seene the time, with my long-sword, I would haue made you fowre tall fellowes skippe like Rattes

Host. Heere boyes, heere, heere: shall we wag? Page. Haue with you: I had rather heare them scold, then fight

Ford. Though Page be a secure foole, and stands so firmely on his wiues frailty; yet, I cannot put-off my opinion so easily: she was in his company at Pages house: and what they made there, I know not. Well, I wil looke further into't, and I haue a disguise, to sound Falstaffe; if I finde her honest, I loose not my labor: if she be otherwise, 'tis labour well bestowed.

Exeunt.

Scoena Secunda.

Enter Falstaffe, Pistoll, Robin, Quickly, Bardolffe, Ford.

Fal. I will not lend thee a penny

Pist. Why then the world's mine Oyster, which I, with sword will open

Fal. Not a penny: I haue beene content (Sir,) you should lay my countenance to pawne: I haue grated vpon my good friends for three Repreeues for you, and your Coach-fellow Nim; or else you had look'd through the grate, like a Geminy of Baboones: I am damn'd in hell, for swearing to Gentlemen my friends, you were good Souldiers, and tall-fellowes. And when Mistresse Briget lost the handle of her Fan, I took't vpon mine honour thou hadst it not

The Merry Wiues of Windsor Page 12

William Shakespeare Plays

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