Host. Oh, the Lord preserue thy good Grace: Welcome to London. Now Heauen blesse that sweete Face of thine: what, are you come from Wales? Fal. Thou whorson mad Compound of Maiestie: by this light Flesh, and corrupt Blood, thou art welcome

Dol. How? you fat Foole, I scorne you

Poin. My Lord, hee will driue you out of your reuenge, and turne all to a merryment, if you take not the heat

Prince. You whorson Candle-myne you, how vildly did you speake of me euen now, before this honest, vertuous, ciuill Gentlewoman? Host. 'Blessing on your good heart, and so shee is by my troth

Fal. Didst thou heare me? Prince. Yes: and you knew me, as you did when you ranne away by Gads-hill: you knew I was at your back, and spoke it on purpose, to trie my patience

Fal. No, no, no: not so: I did not thinke, thou wast within hearing

Prince. I shall driue you then to confesse the wilfull abuse, and then I know how to handle you

Fal. No abuse (Hall) on mine Honor, no abuse

Prince. Not to disprayse me? and call me Pantler, and Bread-chopper, and I know not what? Fal. No abuse (Hal.) Poin. No abuse? Fal. No abuse (Ned) in the World: honest Ned none. I disprays'd him before the Wicked, that the Wicked might not fall in loue with him: In which doing, I haue done the part of a carefull Friend, and a true Subiect, and thy Father is to giue me thankes for it. No abuse (Hal:) none (Ned) none; no Boyes, none

Prince. See now whether pure Feare, and entire Cowardise, doth not make thee wrong this vertuous Gentlewoman, to close with vs? Is shee of the Wicked? Is thine Hostesse heere, of the Wicked? Or is the Boy of the Wicked? Or honest Bardolph (whose Zeale burnes in his Nose) of the Wicked? Poin. Answere thou dead Elme, answere

Fal. The Fiend hath prickt downe Bardolph irrecouerable, and his Face is Lucifers Priuy-Kitchin, where hee doth nothing but rost Mault-Wormes: for the Boy, there is a good Angell about him, but the Deuill outbids him too

Prince. For the Women? Fal. For one of them, shee is in Hell alreadie, and burnes poore Soules: for the other, I owe her Money; and whether shee bee damn'd for that, I know not

Host. No, I warrant you

Fal. No, I thinke thou art not: I thinke thou art quit for that. Marry, there is another Indictment vpon thee, for suffering flesh to bee eaten in thy house, contrary to the Law, for the which I thinke thou wilt howle

Host. All Victuallers doe so: What is a Ioynt of Mutton, or two, in a whole Lent? Prince. You, Gentlewoman

Dol. What sayes your Grace? Falst. His Grace sayes that, which his flesh rebells against

Host. Who knocks so lowd at doore? Looke to the doore there, Francis? Enter Peto.

Prince. Peto, how now? what newes? Peto. The King, your Father, is at Westminster, And there are twentie weake and wearied Postes, Come from the North: and as I came along, I met, and ouer-tooke a dozen Captaines, Bare-headed, sweating, knocking at the Tauernes, And asking euery one for Sir Iohn Falstaffe

Prince. By Heauen (Poines) I feele me much to blame, So idly to prophane the precious time, When Tempest of Commotion, like the South, Borne with black Vapour, doth begin to melt, And drop vpon our bare vnarmed heads. Giue me my Sword, and Cloake: Falstaffe, good night. Enter.

Falst. Now comes in the sweetest Morsell of the night, and wee must hence, and leaue it vnpickt. More knocking at the doore? How now? what's the matter? Bard. You must away to Court, Sir, presently, A dozen Captaines stay at doore for you

Falst. Pay the Musitians, Sirrha: farewell Hostesse, farewell Dol. You see (my good Wenches) how men of Merit are sought after: the vndeseruer may sleepe, when the man of Action is call'd on. Farewell good Wenches: if I be not sent away poste, I will see you againe, ere I goe

Dol. I cannot speake: if my heart bee not readie to burst- Well (sweete Iacke) haue a care of thy selfe

Falst. Farewell, farewell. Enter.

Host. Well, fare thee well: I haue knowne thee these twentie nine yeeres, come Pescod-time: but an honester, and truer-hearted man- Well, fare thee well

Bard. Mistris Teare-sheet

Host. What's the matter? Bard. Bid Mistris Teare-sheet come to my Master

Host. Oh runne Dol, runne: runne, good Dol.


William Shakespeare
Classic Literature Library

All Pages of This Book