Citation
The merry wives of Windsor

Material Information

Title:
The merry wives of Windsor
Creator:
Shakespeare, William, 1564-1616
Thomson, Hugh, 1860-1920 ( illustrator )
Cramer-Roberts, C. H. L., active 1910 ( former owner )
Heinemann (Firm) ( publisher )
Place of Publication:
London
Publisher:
William Heinemann
Manufacturer:
Ballantyne & Company
Publication Date:
Language:
English
Physical Description:
viii, 170 pages, [40] leaves of plates : color illustrations ; 29 cm

Subjects

Subjects / Keywords:
Falstaff, John, Sir (Fictitious character) -- Drama ( lcsh )
Married women -- Drama ( lcsh )
Falstaff, John, Sir (Fictitious character) ( fast )
Married women ( fast )
Drama -- Windsor (Windsor and Maidenhead, England) ( lcsh )
England -- Windsor (Windsor and Maidenhead) ( fast )
Illustrated works -- 20th century ( rbgenr )
Genre:
Illustrated works ( rbgenr )
Drama. ( fast )
drama ( marcgt )
Drama ( fast )
Spatial Coverage:
Great Britain -- England -- London

Notes

General Note:
"This edition is limited to three hundred and fifty numbered and signed copies of which one hundred are reserved for sale in the United States of America."--Preliminary page.
Statement of Responsibility:
by William Shakespeare ; illustrated by Hugh Thomson.

Record Information

Source Institution:
University of Florida
Rights Management:
All applicable rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier:
01831626 ( OCLC )
a 11000519 ( LCCN )
ocm01831626
Classification:
PR2826 .A1 1910 ( lcc )
822 ( ddc )

Auraria Membership

Aggregations:
Literature Collections

Full Text


Some day, these Ieohs will
le scattered as the leaves in
oAutumn, lut, as the leaves
are net lost, hut nourish the
Earth, so may the looks
sustain the spirit oj some one
who loves looks, and who
jeels in himselj the rest and
peace and comfort they, in
lyyone years, yave to one who
loved them yreatly.
<§. qA. ^Petrie


THE MERRY WIVES
OF WINDSOR


This Edition is limited to three
hundred and fifty numbered
and signed copies of which one
hundred are reserved for sale
in the United States oj America
No............
yL'*


HUGH THOMSON EXHIBITION
An Exhibition of the Original Water-Colour
Drawings for The Merry Wives of Windsor
and other subjects by Mr. Hugh Thomson will
be held by Messrs. Ernest Brown and Phillips, at
THE LEICESTER GALLERIES,
Leicester Square, London,
from October 15th to November 12th, 1910.


Let's consult together against this greasy knight



'f
1


cWM'amcf&lnpmar?n, Xbncfon, 19Jo)
0


DRAMATIS PERSONS
Sir John Falstaff.
Fenton, a gentleman.
Shallow, a country justice.
Slender, cousin to Shallow.
Ford, J
Page ywo Sen^emen dwelling at Windsor.
William Page, a boy, son to Page.
Sir Hugh Evans, a Welsh parson.
Doctor Caius, a French physician.
Host of the Garter Inn.
Bardolph,-\
Pistol, J sharpers attending Falstaff.
Nym, J
Robin, page to Falstaff.
Simple, servant to Slender.
Rugby, servant to Doctor Caius.
Mistress Ford.
Mistress Page.
Anne Page, her daughter.
Mistress Quickly, servant to Doctor Caius.
Servants to Page, Ford, etc.
Scene Windsor, and the neighbourhood.


Facing
£ctgc
Lets consult together against this greasy knight Frontispiece
If he were twenty Sir John Falstaffs, he shall not abuse
Robert Shallow, Esquire 2
They carried me to the tavern 10
Enter Anne Page with wine, Mistress Ford and Mistress
Page following 12
The Book of Riddles 14
I am not-a hungry, I thank you 16
Why do your dogs bark so ? be there bears i the town? 18
Theres pippins and cheese to come 20
Enter Falstaff, Pistol, Nym and Bardolph 22
This letter to Mistress Page and thou this to Mistress
Ford 24
Exeunt Falstaff and Robin 26
Does he not hold up his head, as it were ? and strut
in his gait? 28
Villain larron! (Pulling Simple out) 30
I wash, wring and do all myself 32
vii


viii LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS
Facing
/age
Have not your worship a wart above your eye? 34
Heres the twin brother of thy letter 4
Go in with us and see 44
How now, sweet Frank why art thou melancholy ? 48
When Mrs. Bridget lost the handle of her fan 50
Marry, this is the short and the long of it 54
I had rather, forsooth, go before you like a man than
follow him like a dwarf 78
He has eyes of youth, he smells April and May 80
There empty it in the muddy ditch 82
You little Jack-a-Lent, have you been true to us ? 84
There comes my master, Master Shallow, and another
gentleman, from Frogmore, over the stile this way 86
I cannot cog, and say thou art this and that, like a many
of these lisping hawthorn-buds 88
They covered him with foul linen 90
And tis the very riches of thyself that now I aim at 98
I had a father, Mistress Anne: my uncle can tell you
good jests of him 100
Thrown in the Thames 104
Master Slender is let the boys leave to play 114
Come on, sirrahanswer your master, be not afraid 118
Are you not ashamed? let the clothes alone 126
Out of my door, you witch 130
Then let them all encircle him about 136
Enter Sir Hugh Evans, Anne Page, and others 156
Search Windsor Castle, elves, within and out 158
And nightly meadow fairies, look you sing 160
Now, good Sir John, how like you Windsor wives 162
1 went to her and cried mum and she cried 1 budget 166


Windsor. Before Pages house
Enter Justice Shallow, Slender, and Sir
Hugh Evans
^Shallow
Sir Hugh, persuade me not; I will make a Star-
chamber matter of it: if he were twenty Sir John
Falstaffs, he shall not abuse Robert Shallow, esquire.
Slender
In the county of Gloucester, justice of peace and
Coram.
I A
J


2
MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR act i.
Shallow
Ay, cousin Slender, and 4 Custalorum.
Slender
Ay, and Rato-lorum too; and a gentleman born,
master parson; who writes himself Armigero, in any
bill, warrant, quittance, or obligation, Armigero.
Shallow
Ay, that I do; and have done any time these three
hundred years.
Slender
All his successors gone before him hath donet; and
all his ancestors that come after him may: they may
give the dozen white luces in their coat.
It is an old coat.
Shallow
Evans
The dozen white louses do become an old coat well;
it agrees well, passant; it is a familiar beast to man,
and signifies love.
Shallow
The luce is the fresh fish; the salt fish is an old coat.
Slender
I may quarter, coz.
Shallow
You may, by marrying.


If he zvere twenty Sir John Falstaffs, he shall
not abuse Robert Shalloze, Esquire /


#
'N


SC. I.
MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR
3
Evans
It is marring indeed, if he quarter it.
Not a whit.
Shallow
Evans
Yes, pyr lady ; if he has a quarter of your coat, there is
but three skirts for yourself, in my simple conjectures :
but that is all one. If Sir John Falstaff have committed
disparagements unto you, I am of the church, and will
be glad to do my benevolence to make atonements and
compremises between you.
Shallow
The council shall hear it; it is a riot.
Evans
It is not meet the council hear a riot; there is no fear
of Got in a riot: the council, look you, shall desire to
hear the fear of Got, and not to hear a riot; take your
vizaments in that.
Shallow
Ha! o my life, if I were young again, the sword should
end it.
Evans
It is petter that friends is the sword, and end it: and
there is also another device in my prain, which per-
adventure prings goot discretions with it: there is
Anne Page, which is daughter to Master Thomas Page,
which is pretty virginity.


4
MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR act i.
Slender
Mistress Anne Page ? She has brown hair, and speaks
small like a woman.
Evans
It is that fery person for all the orld, as just as you will
desire; and seven hundred pounds of moneys, and gold
and silver, is her grandsire upon his deaths-bedGot
deliver to a joyful resurrections!give, when she is
able to overtake seventeen years old : it were a goot
motion if we leave our pribbles and prabbles, and desire
a marriage between Master Abraham and Mistress
Anne Page.
Slender
Did her grandsire leave her seven hundred pound ?
Evans
Ay, and her father is make her a petter penny.
Slender
I know the young gentlewoman; she has good gifts.
Evans
Seven hundred pounds and possibilities is goot gifts.
Shallow
Well, let us see honest Master Page. Is Falstaff there?
Evans
Shall I tell you a lie ? I do despise a liar as I do
despise one that is false, or as I despise one that is not


SC. I.
MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR
5
true. The knight, Sir John, is there; and, I beseech
you, be ruled by your well-willers. I will peat the door
for Master Page. \Knocks\ What, hoa! Got pless
your house here !
Page
[ Withiii\ Whos there ?
Enter Page
Evans
Here is Gots plessing, and your friend, and Justice
Shallow; and here young Master Slender, that per-
adventures shall tell you another tale, if matters grow to
your likings.
Page
I am glad to see your worships well. I thank you for
my venison, Master Shallow.
Shallow
Master Page, I am glad to see you: much good do it
your good heart! I wished your venison better ; it was
ill killed. How doth good Mistress Page?and I
thank you always with my heart, la! with my heart.
Sir, I thank you.
Page
Shallow
Sir, I thank you ; by yea and no, I do.


6
MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR act i.
Page
I am glad to see you, good Master Slender.
Slender
How does your fallow greyhound, sir ? I heard say he
was outrun on Cotsall.
Page
It could not be judged, sir.
Slender
Youll not confess, youll not confess.
Shallow
That he will not.
good dog.
A cur, sir.
Tis your fault, tis your fault; tis a
Page
Shallow
Sir, hes a good dog, and a fair dog: can there be more
said? he is good and fair. Is Sir John Falstaff here?
Page
Sir, he is within; and I would I could do a good office
between you.
Evans
It is spoke as a Christians ought to speak.
Shallow
He hath wronged me, Master Page.


sc. I. MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR
7
Page
Sir, he doth in some sort confess it.
Shallow
If it be confessed, it is not redressed : is not that so,
Master Page ? He hath wronged me; indeed he hath;
at a word, he hath, believe me: Robert Shallow, esquire,
saith, he is wronged.
Page
Here comes Sir John.
Enter Sir John Falstaff, Bardolph, Nym,
and Pistol
Falstaff
Now, Master Shallow, youll complain of me to the
King ?
Shallow
Knight, you have beaten my men, killed my deer, and
broke open my lodge.
Falstaff
But not kissed your keepers daughter ?
Shallow
Tut, a pin! this shall be answered.
Falstaff
I will answer it straight; I have done all this.
That is now answered.


MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR act i.
Shallow
The council shall know this.
Falstaff
Twere better for you if it were known in counsel:
youll be laughed at.
Evans
Pauca verba, Sir John; goot worts.
Falstaff
Good worts! good cabbage. Slender, I broke your
head: what matter have you against me P
Slender
Marry, sir, I have matter in my head against you; and
against your cony-catching rascals, Bardolph, Nym and
Pistol.
You Banbury cheese!
Bardolph
Slender
Ay, it is no matter.
Pistol
How now, Mephostophilus!
Ay, it is no matter.
Slender
Nym
Slice, I say! pauca, pauca: slice! thats my humour.


SC. I.
MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR
9
Slender
Wheres Simple, my man ? Can you tell, cousin ?
Evans
Peace, I pray you. Now let us understand. There is
three umpires in this matter, as I understand; that is,
Master Page, fidelicet Master Page; and there is my-
self, fidelicet myself; and the three party is, lastly and
finally, mine host of the Garter.
Page
We three, to hear it and end it between them.
Evans
Fery goot: I will make a prief of it in my note-book;
and we will afterwards ork upon the cause with as great
discreetly as we can.
Pistol!
He hears with ears.
Falstaff
Pistol
Evans
The tevil and his tarn! what phrase is this, He hears
with ear ? why, it is affectations.
Falstaff
Pistol, did you pick Master Slenders purse?


IO MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR act i.
Slender
Ay, by these gloves, did he, or I would I might never
come in mine own great chamber again else, of seven
groats in mill-sixpences, and two Edward shovel-boards,
that cost me two shilling and two pence a-piece of Yead
Miller, by these gloves.
Falstaff
Is this true, Pistol ?
Evans
No; it is false, if it is a pick-purse.
Pistol
Ha, thou mountain-foreigner! Sir John and master mine,
I combat challenge of this latter bilbo.
Word of denial in thy labras here!
Word of denial: froth and scum, thou liest!
Slender
By these gloves, then, twas he.
Nym
Be avised, sir, and pass good humours: I will say
marry trap with you, if you run the nuthooks humour
on me; that is the very note of it.
Slender
By this hat, then, he in the red face had it; for though
I cannot remember what I did when you made me
drunk, yet I am not altogether an ass.


They carried me to the tavern



\


SC. 1.
MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR
Falstaff
What say you, Scarlet and John ?
Bardolph
Why, sir, for my part, I say the gentleman had drunk
himself out of his five sentences.
Evans
It is his five senses: fie, what the ignorance is !
Bardolph
And being fap, sir, was, as they say, cashiered; and so
conclusions passed the careires.
Slender
Ay, you spake in Latin then too; but tis no matter:
Ill neer be drunk whilst I live again, but in honest,
civil, godly company, for this trick: if I be drunk, Ill
be drunk with those that have the fear of God, and not
with drunken knaves.
Evans
So Got udge me, that is a virtuous mind.
Falstaff
You hear all these matters denied, gentlemen; you
hear it.


12 MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR act i.
Enter Anne Page, with wine; Mistress Ford
and Mistress Page, following
Page
Nay, daughter, carry the wine in ; well drink within.
[Exit Anne Page.
Slender
0 heaven! this is Mistress Anne Page.
Page
How now, Mistress Ford!
Falstaff
Mistress Ford, by my troth, you are very well met: by
your leave, good mistress. [Kisses her.
Page
Wife, bid these gentlemen welcome. Come, we have
a hot venison pasty to dinner: come, gentlemen, I hope
we shall drink down all unkindness.
[Exeunt all except Shallow, Slender, and Evans.
Slender
1 had rather than forty shillings I had my Book of
Songs and Sonnets here.
Enter Simple
How now, Simple! where have you been? I must wait
on myself, must I ? You have not the Book of Riddles
about you, have you ?


Enter Anne Page with wine, Mistress Ford
and Mistress Page following




SC. I.
MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR
*3
Simple
Book of Riddles! why, did you not lend it to Alice
Shortcake upon All-hallowmas last, a fortnight afore
Michaelmas ?
Shallow
Come, coz; come, coz; we stay for you. A word with
you, coz; marry, this, coz: there is, as twere, a tender,
a kind of tender, made afar off by Sir Hugh here. Do
you understand me?
Slender
Ay, sir, you shall find me reasonable; if it be so, I shall
do that that is reason.
Shallow
Nay, but understand me.
Slender
So I do, sir.
Evans
Give ear to his motions, Master Slender: I will
description the matter to you, if you be capacity of it.
Slender
Nay, I will do as my cousin Shallow says: I pray you,
pardon me; hes a justice of peace in his country,
simple though I stand here.
Evans
But that is not the question: the question is concerning
your marriage.


i4 MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR act i.
Shallow
Ay, theres the point, sir.
Evans
Marry, is it; the very point of it; to Mistress Anne
page.
Slender
Why, if it be so, I will marry her upon any reasonable
demands.
Evans
But can you affection the oman ? Let us command to
know that of your mouth or of your lips; for divers
philosophers hold that the lips is parcel of the mouth.
Therefore, precisely, can you carry your good will to the
maid ?
Shallow
Cousin Abraham Slender, can you love her ?
Slender
I hope, sir, I will do as it shall become one that would
do reason.
Evans
Nay, Gots lords and his ladies! you must speak possi-
table, if you can carry her your desires towards her.
Shallow
That you must. Will you, upon good dowry, marry
her?


The Book of Riddles


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sc. I. MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR 15
Slender
I will do a greater thing than that, upon your request,
cousin, in any reason.
Shallow
Nay, conceive me, conceive me, sweet coz: what I do is
to pleasure you, coz. Can you love the maid ?
Slender
I will marry her, sir, at your request: but if there be no
great love in the beginning, yet heaven may decrease it
upon better acquaintance, when we are married and
have more occasion to know one another; I hope, upon
familiarity will grow more contempt: but if you say,
Marry her, I will marry her; that I am freely dis-
solved, and dissolutely.
Evans
It is a fery discretion answer; save the fall is in the ort
dissolutely: the ort is, according to our meaning,
resolutely: his meaning is good.
Shallow
Ay, I think my cousin meant well.
Slender
Ay, or else I would I might be hanged, la!
Shallow
Here comes fair Mistress Anne.


16 MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR act i.
Re-enter Anne Page
Would I were young for your sake, Mistress Anne!
Anne
The dinner is on the table; my father desires your
worships company.
Shallow
I will wait on him, fair Mistress Anne.
Evans
Ods plessed will! I will not be absence at the grace.
\Exeunt Shallow and Evans.
Anne
Willt please your worship to come in, sir P
Slender
No, I thank you, forsooth, heartily; I am very well.
Anne
The dinner attends you, sir.
Slender
I am not a-hungry, I thank you, forsooth. Go, sirrah,
for all you are my man, go wait upon my cousin
Shallow. [Exit Simple.] A justice of peace sometimes
may be beholding to his friend for a man. I keep but


I am not-a hungry, I thank you


0
W-


MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR
sc.
17
three men and a boy yet, till my mother be dead: but
what though P yet I live like a poor gentleman born.
Anne
I may not go in without your worship: they will not sit
till you come.
Slender
I faith, Ill eat nothing; I thank you as much as though
I did.
Anne
I pray you, sir, walk in.
Slender
I had rather walk here, I thank you. I bruised my
shin th other day with playing at sword and dagger
with a master of fence; three veneys for a dish of
stewed prunes; and, by my troth, I cannot abide the
smell of hot meat since. Why do your dogs bark so ?
be there bears i the town ?
Anne
I think there are, sir; I heard them talked of.
Slender
I love the sport well; but I shall as soon quarrel at it
as any man in England. You are afraid, if you see
the bear loose, are you not?
Anne
Ay, indeed, sir.
c


MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR act i.
Slender
Thats meat and drink to me, now. I have seen
Sackerson loose twenty times, and have taken him by
the chain; but, I warrant you, the women have so cried
and shrieked at it, that it passed : but women, indeed,
cannot abide em; they are very ill-favoured rough
things.
Re-enter Page
Page
Come, gentle Master Slender, come; we stay for you.
Slender
Ill eat nothing, I thank you, sir.
Page
By cock and pie, you shall not choose, sir! come,
come.
Slender
Nay, pray you, lead the way.
Page
Come on, sir.
Slender
Mistress Anne, yourself shall go first.
Anne
Not I, sir; pray you, keep on.


Why do your dogs bark so ? be there bears
t the town ?


S*'


sc. II. MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR
19
Slender
Truly, I will not go first; truly, la! I will not do you
that wrong.
Anne
I pray you, sir.
Slender
Ill rather be unmannerly than troublesome. You do
yourself wrong, indeed, la ! \_Exeunt.
Scene II
The same
Enter Sir Hugh Evans and Simple
Evans
Go your ways, and ask of Doctor Caiuss house which is
the way: and there dwells one Mistress Quickly, which
is in the manner of his nurse, or his dry nurse, or his
cook, or his laundry, his washer, and his wringer.
Simple
Well, sip\
Evans
Nay, it is petter yet. Give her this letter ; for it is a
oman that altogethers acquaintance with Mistress


20 MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR act i.
Anne Page: and the letter is, to desire and require
her to solicit your masters desires to Mistress Anne
Page. I pray you, be gone: I will make an end of my
dinner; theres pippins and cheese to come. \_Exeunt.
Scene III
A room in the Garter Inn
Enter Falstaff, Host, Bardolph, Nym, Pistol,
and Robin
Falstaff
Mine host of the Garter !
Host
What says my bully-rook ? speak scholarly and wisely.
Falstaff
Truly, mine host, I must turn away some of my
followers.
Host
Discard, bully Hercules; cashier: let them wag; trot,
trot.
Falstaff
I sit at ten pounds a week.


There s pippins and cheese to come


\
p
s
*


sc. III. MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR
21
Host
Thourt an emperor, Caesar, Keisar, and Pheezar. I
will entertain Bardolph; he shall draw, he shall tap:
said I well, bully Hector?
Falstaff
Do so, good mine host.
Host
I have spoke; let him follow. [To Bardolph] Let me see
thee froth and lime: I am at a word; follow. [Exit.
Falstaff
Bardolph, follow him. A tapster is a good trade: an
old cloak makes a new jerkin; a withered serving-
man a fresh tapster. Go; adieu.
Bardolph
It is a life that I have desired: I will thrive.
Pistol
0 base Hungarian wight! wilt thou the spigot wield ?
[Exit Bardolph.
Nym
He was gotten in drink: is not the humour conceited ?
Falstaff
1 am glad I am so acquit of this tinder-box: his thefts
were too open; his filching was like an unskilful singer;
he kept not time.


22
MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR act i.
Nym
The good humour is to steal at a minutes rest.
Pistol
Convey, the wise it call. Steal! foh! a fico for the
phrase!
Falstaff
Well, sirs, I am almost out at heels.
Pistol
Why, then, let kibes ensue.
Falstaff
There is no remedy; I must cony-catch; I must shift.
Pistol
Young ravens must have food.
Falstaff
Which of you know Ford of this town?
Pistol
I ken the wight: he is of substance good.
Falstaff
My honest lads, I will tell you what I am about.
Pistol
Two yards, and more.


Enter Falstajf \ Pistol, Nym and Bardolph


*


sc. III. MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR
23
Falstaff
No quips now, Pistol! Indeed, I am in the waist two
yards about; but I am now about no waste; I am
about thrift. Briefly, I do mean to make love to Fords
wife: I spy entertainment in her; she discourses, she
carves, she gives the leer of invitation: I can construe
the action of her familiar style; and the hardest voice
of her behaviour, to be Englished rightly, is, I am Sir
John Falstaffs.
Pistol
He hath studied her will, and translated her will, out of
honesty into English.
Nym
The anchor is deep: will that humour pass ?
Falstaff
Now, the report goes she has all the rule of her
husbands purse; he hath a legion of angels.
Pistol
As many devils entertain; and To her, boy, say I.
Nym
The humour rises; it is good: humour me the angels.
Falstaff
I have writ me here a lettter to her: and here another
to Pages wife, who even now gave me good eyes too,


24 MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR act i.
examined my parts with most judicious oeillades; some-
times the beam of her view gilded my foot, sometimes
my portly belly.
Pistol
Then did the sun on dunghill shine.
Nym
I thank thee for that humour.
Falstaff
O, she did so course oer my exteriors with such a
greedy intention, that the appetite of her eye did seem
to scorch me up like a burning-glass! Heres another
letter to her: she bears the purse too; she is a region
in Guiana, all gold and bounty. I will be cheater to
them both, and they shall be exchequers to me; they
shall be my East and West Indies, and I will trade to
them both. Go bear thou this letter to Mistress Page;
and thou this to Mistress Ford: we will thrive, lads, we
will thrive.
Pistol
Shall I Sir Pandarus of Troy become,
And by my side wear steel ? then, Lucifer take all 1
Nym
I will run no base humour: here, take the humour-
letter : I will keep the haviour of reputation.


1 his letter to Mistress Page and thou this
to Mistress Ford




sc. III. MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR
25
Falstaff
\To Robin] Hold, sirrah, bear you these letters tightly ;
Sail like my pinnace to these golden shores.
Rogues, hence, avaunt! vanish like hailstones, go;
Trudge, plod away o the hoof; seek shelter, pack!
Falstaff will learn the humour of the age,
French thrift, you rogues; myself and skirted page.
\Exeunt Falstaff and Robin.
Pistol
Let vultures gripe thy guts! for gourd and fullam
holds,
And high and low beguiles the rich and poor:
Tester Ill have in pouch when thou shalt lack,
Base Phrygian Turk!
Nym
I have operations which be humours of revenge.
Wilt thou revenge?
Pistol
Nym
By welkin and her star!
Pistol
With wit or steel?
Nym
With both the humours, I:
I will discuss the humour of this love to Page.


MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR act i.
26
Pistol
And I to Ford shall eke unfold,
How Falstaff, varlet vile,
His dove will prove, his gold will hold,
And his soft couch defile.
Nym
My humour shall not cool: I will incense Page to deal
with poison; I will possess him with yellowness, for the
revolt of mine is dangerous: that is my true humour.
Pistol
Thou art the Mars of malecontents: I second thee;
troop on. \_Exeunt.
Scene IV
A room in Doctor Caiuss house
Enter Mistress Quickly, Simple, and Rugby
Quickly
What, John Rugby! I pray thee, go to the casement,
and see if you can see my master, Master Doctor Caius,
coming. If he do, i faith, and find any body in the


Exeunt Falstaff and Robin



>>


sc. IV. MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR
27
house, here will be an old abusing of Gods patience
and the kings English.
Rugby
Ill go watch.
Quickly
Go, and well have a posset fort soon at night, in faith,
at the latter end of a sea-coal fire. \Exit Rugby.] An
honest, willing, kind fellow, as ever servant shall come
in house withal, and, I warrant you, no tell-tale nor no
breed-bate: his worst fault is, that he is given to prayer;
he is something peevish that way: but nobody but has
his fault; but let that pass. Peter Simple, you say
your name is ?
Simple
Ay, for fault of a better.
Quickly
And Master Slenders your master?
Simple
Ay, forsooth.
Quickly
Does he not wear a great round beard, like a glovers
paring-knife ?
Simple
No, forsooth: he hath but a little wee face, with a little
yellow beard, a Cain-coloured beard.
Quickly
A softly-sprighted man, is he not ?


MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR act i.
Simple
Ay, forsooth : but he is as tall a man of his hands as
any is between this and his head; he hath fought with
a warrener.
Quickly
How say you ? O, I should remember him : does he
not hold up his head, as it were, and strut in his gait ?
Simple
Yes, indeed, does he.
Quickly
Well, heaven send Anne Page no worse fortune! Tell
Master Parson Evans I will do what I can for your
master: Anne is a good girl, and I wish---
Re-enter Rugby
Rugby
Out, alas! here comes my master.
Quickly
We shall all be shent. Run in here, good young man;
go into this closet: he will not stay long. \_Shuts Simple
in the closet.] What, John Rugby John what, John,
I say! Go, John, go inquire for my master; I doubt
he be not well, that he comes not home.
[Singing] And down, down, adown-a, &c.


Does he not hold up his head, as it were ?
and strut in his gait l


4


sc. IV. MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR
29
Enter Doctor Caius
Caius
Vat is you sing ? I do not like des toys. Pray you,
go and vetch me in my closet un boitier vert, a box,
a green-a box : do intend vat I speak ? a green-a box.
Quickly
Ay, forsooth; Ill fetch it you. \Aside\ I am glad he
went not in himself: if he had found the young man,
he would have been horn-mad.
Caius
Fe, fe, fe, fe ma foi, il fait fort chaud. Je men vais
a la courla grande affaire.
Is it this, sir ?
Quickly
Caius
Oui; mette le au mon pocket: depeche, quickly,
is dat knave Rugby ?
Quickly
What, John Rugby John !
Vere
Here, sir!
Rugby
Caius
You are John Rugby, and you are Jack Rugby. Come,
take-a your rapier, and come after my heel to the court.


30 MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR act i.
Rugby
5Tis ready, sir, here in the porch.
Caius
By my trot, I tarry too long. Ods me! Quai-joublie!
dere is some simples in my closet,*dat I vill not for the
varld I shall leave behind.
Quickly
Ay me, hell find the young man there, and be mad!
Caius
0 diable, diable! vat is in my closet? Villain! larron!
\Pulhng Simple ont?\ Rugby, my rapier !
Quickly
Good master, be content.
Caius
Wherefore shall I be content-a?
Quickly
The young man is an honest man.
Caius
What shall de honest man do in my closet? dere is no
honest man dat shall come in my closet.
Quickly
1 beseech you, be not so phlegmatic. Hear the truth of
it: he came of an errand to me from Parson Hugh.


Villain larron [.Pulling Simple oat]




sc. IV. MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR
3i
Caius
Veil.
Simple
Ay, forsooth; to desire her to
Peace, I pray you.
Peace-a your tongue.
Quickly
Caius
Speak-a your tale.
Simple
To desire this honest gentlewoman, your maid, to speak
a good word to Mistress Anne Page for my master in
the way of marriage.
Quickly
This is all, indeed, la! but Ill neer put my finger in
the fire, and need not.
Caius
Sir Hugh send-a you? Rugby, bailie me some paper.
Tarry you a little a-while. [ Writes.
Quickly
[Aside to Simple] I am glad he is so quiet: if he had
been throughly moved, you should have heard him
so loud and so melancholy. But notwithstanding, man,
Ill do you your master what good I can: and the very
yea and the no is, the French doctor, my master,


32 MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR act i.
I may call him my master, look you, for I keep his
house; and I wash, wring, brew, bake, scour, dress meat
and drink, make the beds, and do all myself,
Simple
[Aside to Quickly] Tis a great charge to come under
one bodys hand.
Quickly
[Aside to Simple] Are you avised o that? you shall
find it a great charge: and to be up early and down
late; but notwithstanding,to tell you in your ear; I
would have no words of it,my master himself is in
love with Mistress Anne Page: but notwithstanding
that, I know Annes mind,thats neither here nor
there.
Caius
You jacknape, give-a this letter to Sir Hugh; by gar, it is
a shallenge: I will cut his troat in de park; and I will
teach a scurvy jack-a-nape priest to meddle or make.
You may be gone; it is not good you tarry here. By
gar, I will cut all his two stones; by gar, he shall not
have a stone to throw at his dog. [Exit Simple.
Quickly
Alas, he speaks but for his friend.
Caius
It is no matter-a ver dat: do not you tell-a me dat
I shall have Anne Page for myself? By gar, I vill kill
de Jack priest; and I have appointed mine host of de


/ wash, zvring ...... and do all myself'''


<


sc. IV. MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR
33
Jarteer to measure our weapon. By gar, I will myself
have Anne Page.
Quickly
Sir, the maid loves you, and all shall be well. We
must give folks leave to prate: what, the good-jer!
Caius
Rugby, come to the court with me. By gar, if I have
not Anne Page, I shall turn your head out of my door.
Follow my heels, Rugby. \_Exeunt Caius and Rugby.
Quickly
You shall have An fools-head of your own. No, I
know Annes mind for that: never a woman in Windsor
knows more of Annes mind than I do; nor can do
more than I do with her, I thank heaven.
Fenton
[ Within] Whos within there ? oh!
Quickly
Whos there, I trow! Come near the house, I pray
you.
Enter Fenton
Fenton
How now, good woman! how dost thou ?
Quickly
The better that it pleases your good worship to ask.


34
MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR act i.
Fenton
What news? how does pretty Mistress Anne?
Quickly
In truth, sir, and she is pretty, and honest, and gentle;
and one that is your friend, I can tell you that by the
way; I pray heaven for it.
Fenton
Shall I do any good, thinkest thou ? shall I not lose my
suit?
Quickly
Troth, sir, all is in his hands above: but notwith-
standing, Master Fenton, Ill be sworn on a book, she
loves you. Have not your worship a wart above your
eye ?
Fenton
Yes, marry, have I; what of that?
Quickly
Well, thereby hangs a tale: good faith, it is such
another Nan; but, I detest, an honest maid as ever
broke bread: we had an hours talk of that wart.
I shall never laugh but in that maids company! But
indeed she is given too much to allicholy and musing:
but for youwell, go to.
Fenton
Well, I shall see her to-day. Hold, theres money for


Have not your worship a wart above your eye


/


SC. IV.
MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR
35
thee; let me have thy voice in my behalf: if thou
seest her before me, commend me.
Will I ? i faith, that we will; and I will tell your
worship more of the wart the next time we have confi-
dence ; and of other wooers.
Fenton
Well, farewell; I am in great haste now.
Farewell to your worship. [Exit Fenton.] Truly, an
honest gentleman : but Anne loves him not; for I know
Annes mind as well as another does. Out upon t!
Quickly
Quickly
what have I forgot?
[Exit.


' (


Scene I
Befo7'e Pages house
Enter Mistress Page, with a letter
Mrs. Page
What, have I scaped love-letters in the holiday-time of
my beauty, and am I now a subject for them ? Let me
see. [Reads.
Ask me no reason why I love you ; for though Rove
itse Reason for his physician, he admits him not for his
counsellor. You are not young, no more am I; go to
then, there's sympathy : you are merry, so am I; ha, ha !
37


38 MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR act n.
then there's more sympathy: you love sack, and so do /;
would you desire better sympathy ? Let it suffice thee,
Mistress Page,at the least, if the love of soldier can
sufficethat I love thee. / will not say, pity me ; tis
not a soldier-like phrase: but I say love me. By me,
Thine own true knight,
By day or night,
Or any kind of light,
With all his might
For thee to fight, John Falstaff
What a Herod of Jewry is this! O wicked, wicked
world! One that is well-nigh worn to pieces with age
to show himself a young gallant! What an unweighed
behaviour hath this Flemish drunkard pickedwith
the devils name!out of my conversation, that he
dares in this manner assay me? Why, he hath not
been thrice in my company! What should I say to
him ? I was then frugal of my mirth: Heaven forgive
me! Why, Ill exhibit a bill in the parliament for the
putting down of men. How shall I be revenged on
him ? for revenged I will be, as sure as his guts are
made of puddings.
Enter Mistress Ford
Mrs. Ford
Mistress Page trust me, I was going to your house.


se. i. MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR 39
Mrs. Page
And, trust me, I was coming to you. You look very
ill.
Mrs. Ford
Nay, Ill neer believe that; I have to show to the
contrary.
Mrs. Page
Faith, but you do, in my mind.
Mrs. Ford
Well, I do then; yet I say I could show you to the
contrary. O Mistress Page, give me some counsel!
Mrs. Page
Whats the matter, woman ?
Mrs. Ford
0 woman, if it were not for one trifling respect, I could
come to such honour !
Mrs. Page
Hang the trifle, woman take the honour. What is it ?
dispense with trifles ; what is it ?
Mrs. Ford
If I would but go to hell for an eternal moment or so,
1 could be knighted.
Mrs. Page
What? thou liest! Sir Alice Ford These knights will
hack ; and so thou shouldst not alter the article of thy
gentry.


4 o
MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR act ii.
Mrs. Ford
We bum daylight: here, read, read; perceive how I
might be knighted. I shall think the worse of fat men,
as long as I have an eye to make difference of mens
liking: and yet he would not swear; praised womens
modesty; and gave such orderly and well-behaved
reproof to all uncomeliness, that I would have sworn
his disposition would have gone to the truth of his
words; but they do no more adhere and keep place
together than the Hundredth Psalm to the tune of Green
Sleeves. What tempest, I trow, threw this whale,
with so many tuns of oil in his belly, ashore at Windsor ?
How shall I be revenged on him ? I think the best
way were to entertain him with hope, till the wicked fire
of lust have melted him in his own grease. Did you
ever hear the like?
Mrs. Page
Letter for letter, but that the name of Page and Ford
differs To thy great comfort in this mystery of ill
opinions, heres the twin-brother of thy letter: but let
thine inherit first; for, I protest, mine never shall. I
warrant he hath a thousand of these letters, writ with
blank space for different names,sure, more,and
these are of the second edition : he will print them, out
of doubt; for he cares not what he puts into the press,
when he would put us two. I had rather be a giantess,
and lie under Mount Pelion. Well, I will find you
twenty lascivious turtles ere one chaste man.


Here s the twin brother of thy letter




SC. I.
MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR
41
Mrs. Ford
Why, this is the very same; the very hand, the very
words. What doth he think of us ?
Mrs. Page
Nay, I know not: it makes me almost ready to wrangle
with mine own honesty. Ill entertain myself like one
that I am not acquainted withal; for, sure, unless he
know some strain in me, that I know not myself, he
would never have boarded me in this fury.
Mrs. Ford
Boarding, call you it ? Ill be sure to keep him above
deck.
Mrs. Page
So will I: if he come under my hatches, Ill never to
sea again. Lets be revenged on him : lets appoint him
a meeting; give him a show of comfort in his suit and
lead him on with a fine-baited delay, till he hath pawned
his horses to mine host of the Garter.
Mrs. Ford
Nay, I will consent to act any villany against him, that
may not sully the chariness of our honesty. O, that
my husband saw this letter it would give eternal food
to his jealousy.
Mrs. Page
Why, look where he comes; and my good man too:
hes as far from jealousy as I am from giving him
cause; and that I hope is an unmeasurable distance.


42
MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR act ii.
Mrs. Ford
You are the happier woman.
Mrs. Page
Lets consult together against this greasy knight. Come
hither. [They retire.
Enter Ford with Pistol, and Page with Nym
Ford
Well, I hope it be not so.
Pistol
Hope is a curtal dog in some affairs:
Sir John affects thy wife.
Ford
Why, sir, my wife is not young.
Pistol
He wooes both high and low, both rich and poor,
Both young and old, one with another, Ford ;
He loves the gallimaufry: Ford, perpend.
Love my wife!
Ford
Pistol
With liver burning hot. Prevent, or go thou,
Like Sir Actaeon he, with Ringwood at thy heels:
O, odious is the name!


SC. I.
MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR
43
Ford
What name, sir ?
Pistol
The horn, I say. Farewell.
Take heed, have open eye, for thieves do foot by night:
Take heed, ere summer comes or cuckoo-birds do sing.
Away, Sir Corporal Nym!
Believe it, Page; he speaks sense. [Exit.
Ford
[Aside] I will be patient; I will find out this.
Nym
[To Page] And this is true; I like not the humour
of lying. He hath wronged me in some humours: I
should have borne the humoured letter to her; but I
have a sword and it shall bite upon my necessity. He
loves your wife; theres the short and the long. My
name is Corporal Nym; I speak and I avouch; tis
true: my name is Nym and Falstaff loves your wife.
Adieu. I love not the humour of bread and cheese,
and theres the humour of it. Adieu. [Exit.
Page
The humour of it, quoth a! heres a fellow frights
English out of his wits.
Ford
I will seek out Falstaff.


44
MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR act ii.
Page
I never heard such a drawling, affecting rogue.
Ford
If I do find it: well.
Page
I will not believe such a Cataian, though the priest o
the town commended him for a true man.
Ford
Twas a good sensible fellow: well.
Page
How now, Meg!
[Mrs. Page and Mrs. Ford come forward.
Mrs. Page
Whither go you, George? Hark you.
Mrs. Ford
How now, sweet Frank! why art thou melancholy ?
Ford
I melancholy! I am not melancholy. Get you home,
g-
Mrs. Ford
Faith, thou hast some crotchets in thy head,
will you go, Mistress Page ?
Now,


Go in with us, and see




SC. I.
MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR
45
Mrs. Page
Have with you. Youll come to dinner, George.
[Aside to Mrs. Ford] Look who comes yonder: she
shall be our messenger to this paltry knight.
Mrs. Ford
[Aside to Mrs. Page] Trust me, I thought on her:
shell fit it.
Enter Mistress Quickly
Mrs. Page
You are come to see my daughter Anne?
Quickly
Ay, forsooth; and, I pray, how does good Mistress
Anne ?
Mrs. Page
Go in with us and see: we have an hours talk with
you.
[Exeunt Mrs. Page, Mrs. Ford, and Mrs. Quickly.
Page
How now, Master Ford!
Ford
You heard what this knave told me, did you not?
Page
Yes : and you heard what the other told me?


4 6
MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR act ii.
Ford
Do you think there is truth in them ?
Page
Hang em, slaves I do not think the knight would
offer it: but these that accuse him in his intent towards
our wives are a yoke of his discarded men, very rogues,
now they be out of service.
Were they his men?
Ford
Page
Marry, were they.
Ford
I like it never the better for that.
Garter ?
Page
Does he lie at the
Ay, marry, does he. If he should intend this voyage
towards my wife, I would turn her loose to him; and
what he gets more of her than sharp words, let it lie
on my head.
Ford
I do not misdoubt my wife; but I would be loath to
turn them together. A man may be too confident: I
would have nothing lie on my head : I cannot be thus
satisfied.
Page
Look where my ranting host of the Garter comes :
there is either liquor in his pate or money in his purse
when he looks so merrily.


sc. I. MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR
47
Enter Host
How now, mine host!
Host
How now, bully-rook! thourt a gentleman. Cavaleiro-
justice, I say!
Enter Shallow
Shallow
I follow, mine host, I follow. Good even and twenty,
good Master Page! Master Page, will you go with
us ? we have sport in hand.
Host
Tell him, cavaleiro-justice; tell him, bully-rook.
Shallow
Sir, there is a fray to be fought between Sir Hugh the
Welsh priest and Caius the French doctor.
Ford
Good mine host o the Garter, a word with you.
[Drawing him aside.
Host
What sayest thou, my bully-rook ?
Shallow
[To Page] Will you go with us to behold it? My
merry host hath had the measuring of their weapons;


48 MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR act ii.
and, I think, hath appointed them contrary places ; for,
believe me, I hear the parson is no jester. Hark! I
will tell you what our sport shall be.
\They converse apart.
Host
Hast thou no suit against my knight, my guest-cavaleire ?
Ford
None, I protest: but Ill give you a pottle of burnt
sack to give me recourse to him and tell him my name
is Brook ; only for a jest.
Host
My hand, bully; thou shalt have egress and regress;
said I well ?and thy name shall be Brook. It is a
merry knight. Will you go, An-heires ?
Shallow
Have with you, mine host.
Page
I have heard the Frenchman hath good skill in his
rapier.
Shallow
Tut, sir, I could have told you more. In these times
you stand on distance, your passes, stoccadoes, and I
know not what: tis the heart, Master Page; tis here,
tis here. I have seen the time, with my long sword I
would have made you four tall fellows skip like rats.


How nozu, sweet Frank zvhy art thou
melancholy ?


1


sc. II. MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR
49
Host
Here, boys, here, here shall we wag ?
Page
Have with you. I had rather hear them scold than
fight. \Exeunt Host, Shallow, and. Page.
Ford
Though Page be a secure fool, and stands so firmly on
his wifes 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 will look
further into t: and I have a disguise to sound Falstaff.
If I find her honest, I lose not my labour; if she be
otherwise, tis labour well bestowed. [Exit.
Scene II
A room in the Garter Inn
Enter Falstaff and Pistol
Falstaff
I will not lend thee a penny.
Pistol
Why, then the worlds mine oyster,
Which I with sword will open.


5
MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR act ii.
Falstaff
Not a penny. I have been content, sir, you should lay
my countenance to pawn: I have grated upon my
good' friends for three reprieves for you and your coach-
fellow Nym; or else you had looked through the
grate, like a geminy of baboons. I am damned in hell
for swearing to gentlemen my friends, you were good
soldiers and tall fellows; and when Mrs. Bridget lost
the handle of her fan, I tookt upon mine honour thou
hadst it not.
Pistol
Didst not thou share P hadst thou not fifteen pence?
Falstaff
Reason, you rogue, reason : thinkest thou Ill endanger
my soul gratis ? At a word, hang no more about me,
I am no gibbet for you. Go. A short knife and a
throng! To your manor of Pickthatch! Go. Youll
not bear a letter for me, you rogue! you stand upon
your honour. Why, thou unconfinable baseness, it is as
much as I can do to keep the terms of my honour
precise : I, I, I myself sometimes, leaving the fear of
God on the left hand and hiding mine honour in my
necessity, am fain to shuffle, to hedge and to lurch;
and yet you, rogue, will ensconce your rags, your cat-a-
mountain looks, your red-lattice phrases, and your bold-
beating oaths, under the shelter of your honour! You
will not do it, you !


When Mrs. Bridget lost the handle of her fan




sc. XI. MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR
5i
Pistol
I do relent: what would thou more of man ?
Enter Robin
Robin
Sir, heres a woman would speak with you.
Let her approach. Falstaff
Enter Mistress Quickly
Quickly
Give your worship good morrow.
Falstaff
Good morrow, good wife.
Quickly
Not so, an t please your worship.
Good maid, then. Falstaff Quickly
Ill be swoi-n,
As my mother was, the first hour I was born.
Falstaff
I do believe the swearer. What with me ?


52
MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR act ii.
Quickly
Shall I vouchsafe your worship a word or two ?
Falstaff
Two thousand, fair woman: and Ill vouchsafe thee
the hearing.
Quickly
There is one Mistress Ford, sir :I pray, come a little
nearer this ways :I myself dwell with Master Doctor
Caius,
Falstaff
Well, on : Mistress Ford, you say,
Quickly
Your worship says very true: I pray your worship,
come a little nearer this ways.
Falstaff
I warrant thee, nobody hears; mine own people, mine
own people.
Quickly
Are they so ? God bless them and make them his
servants!
Falstaff
Well, Mistress Ford; what of her?
Quickly
Why, sir, shes a good creature. Lord, Lord! your
worships a wanton! Well, heaven forgive you and all
of us, I pray!


SC. II.
MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR
53
Falstaff
Mistress Ford; come, Mistress Ford,
Quickly
Marry, this is the short and the long of it; you have
brought her into such a canaries as tis wonderful. The
best courtier of them all, when the court lay at
Windsor, could never have brought her to such a
canary. Yet there has been knights, and lords, and
gentlemen, with their coaches, I warrant you, coach
after coach, letter after letter, gift after gift; smelling
so sweetly, all musk, and so rushling, I warrant you, in
silk and gold; and in such alligant terms; and in such
wine and sugar of the best and the fairest, that would
have won any womans heart; and, I warrant you, they
could never get an eye-wink of her: I had myself
twenty angels given me this morning; but I defy all
angels, in any such sort, as they say, but in the way of
honesty: and, I warrant you, they could never get her
so much as sip on a cup with the proudest of them all:
and yet there has been earls, nay, which is more,
pensioners; but, I warrant you, all is one with her.
Falstaff
But what says she to me; be brief, my good she-
Mercury.
Quickly
Marry, she hath received your letter, for the which she
thanks you a thousand times; and she gives you to