Lord. Heauen cease this idle humor in your Honor. Oh that a mightie man of such discent, Of such possessions, and so high esteeme Should be infused with so foule a spirit

Beg. What would you make me mad? Am not I Christopher Slie, old Slies sonne of Burton-heath, by byrth a Pedler, by education a Cardmaker, by transmutation a Beare-heard, and now by present profession a Tinker. Aske Marrian Hacket the fat Alewife of Wincot, if shee know me not: if she say I am not xiiii.d. on the score for sheere Ale, score me vp for the lyingst knaue in Christen dome. What I am not bestraught: here's- 3.Man. Oh this it is that makes your Ladie mourne

2.Man. Oh this is it that makes your seruants droop

Lord. Hence comes it, that your kindred shuns your house As beaten hence by your strange Lunacie. Oh Noble Lord, bethinke thee of thy birth, Call home thy ancient thoughts from banishment, And banish hence these abiect lowlie dreames: Looke how thy seruants do attend on thee, Each in his office readie at thy becke. Wilt thou haue Musicke? Harke Apollo plaies,


And twentie caged Nightingales do sing. Or wilt thou sleepe? Wee'l haue thee to a Couch, Softer and sweeter then the lustfull bed On purpose trim'd vp for Semiramis. Say thou wilt walke: we wil bestrow the ground. Or wilt thou ride? Thy horses shal be trap'd, Their harnesse studded all with Gold and Pearle. Dost thou loue hawking? Thou hast hawkes will soare Aboue the morning Larke. Or wilt thou hunt, Thy hounds shall make the Welkin answer them And fetch shrill ecchoes from the hollow earth

1.Man. Say thou wilt course, thy gray-hounds are as swift As breathed Stags: I fleeter then the Roe

2.M. Dost thou loue pictures? we wil fetch thee strait Adonis painted by a running brooke, And Citherea all in sedges hid, Which seeme to moue and wanton with her breath, Euen as the wauing sedges play with winde

Lord. Wee'l shew thee Io, as she was a Maid, And how she was beguiled and surpriz'd, As liuelie painted, as the deede was done

3.Man. Or Daphne roming through a thornie wood, Scratching her legs, that one shal sweare she bleeds, And at that sight shal sad Apollo weepe, So workmanlie the blood and teares are drawne

Lord. Thou art a Lord, and nothing but a Lord: Thou hast a Ladie farre more Beautifull, Then any woman in this waining age

1.Man. And til the teares that she hath shed for thee, Like enuious flouds ore-run her louely face, She was the fairest creature in the world, And yet shee is inferiour to none

Beg. Am I a Lord, and haue I such a Ladie? Or do I dreame? Or haue I dream'd till now? I do not sleepe: I see, I heare, I speake: I smel sweet sauours, and I feele soft things: Vpon my life I am a Lord indeede, And not a Tinker, nor Christopher Slie. Well, bring our Ladie hither to our sight, And once againe a pot o'th smallest Ale

2.Man. Wilt please your mightinesse to wash your hands: Oh how we ioy to see your wit restor'd, Oh that once more you knew but what you are: These fifteene yeeres you haue bin in a dreame, Or when you wak'd, so wak'd as if you slept

Beg. These fifteene yeeres, by my fay, a goodly nap, But did I neuer speake of all that time

1.Man. Oh yes my Lord, but verie idle words, For though you lay heere in this goodlie chamber, Yet would you say, ye were beaten out of doore, And raile vpon the Hostesse of the house, And say you would present her at the Leete, Because she brought stone-Iugs, and no seal'd quarts: Sometimes you would call out for Cicely Hacket

William Shakespeare
Classic Literature Library

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The Merry Wiues of Windsor