La. Oh illiterate loyterer; it was the sonne of thy Grand-mother: this proues that thou canst not read

Sp. Come foole, come: try me in thy paper

La. There: and S[aint]. Nicholas be thy speed

Sp. Inprimis she can milke

La. I that she can

Sp. Item, she brewes good Ale

La. And thereof comes the prouerbe: (Blessing of your heart, you brew good Ale.) Sp. Item, she can sowe

La. That's as much as to say (Can she so?) Sp. Item she can knit

La. What neede a man care for a stock with a wench, When she can knit him a stocke? Sp. Item, she can wash and scoure

La. A speciall vertue: for then shee neede not be wash'd, and scowr'd

Sp. Item, she can spin

La. Then may I set the world on wheeles, when she can spin for her liuing

Sp. Item, she hath many namelesse vertues

La. That's as much as to say Bastard-vertues: that indeede know not their fathers; and therefore haue no names

Sp. Here follow her vices

La. Close at the heeles of her vertues

Sp. Item, shee is not to be fasting in respect of her breath

La. Well: that fault may be mended with a breakfast: read on

Sp. Item, she hath a sweet mouth

La. That makes amends for her soure breath

Sp. Item, she doth talke in her sleepe

La. It's no matter for that; so shee sleepe not in her talke

Sp. Item, she is slow in words

La. Oh villaine, that set this downe among her vices; To be slow in words, is a womans onely vertue: I pray thee out with't, and place it for her chiefe vertue

Sp. Item, she is proud

La. Out with that too: It was Eues legacie, and cannot be t'ane from her

Sp. Item, she hath no teeth

La. I care not for that neither: because I loue crusts

Sp. Item, she is curst

La. Well: the best is, she hath no teeth to bite

Sp. Item, she will often praise her liquor

La. If her liquor be good, she shall: if she will not, I will; for good things should be praised

Sp. Item, she is too liberall

La. Of her tongue she cannot; for that's writ downe she is slow of: of her purse, shee shall not, for that ile keepe shut: Now, of another thing shee may, and that cannot I helpe. Well, proceede

William Shakespeare
Classic Literature Library

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