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Fent. Sir, will you hear me?
. No, good master Fenton. Come, master Shallow: come, son Slender; in:Knowing my mind, you wrong me, master Fenton..
[Exeunt PAGE, SHALLOW, and SLENDER. Quick. Speak to mistress Page. Fent. Good mistress Page, for that I love your
Anne. Good mother, do not marry me to yond' fool.
husband. Quick. That's my master, master doctor.
Anne. Alas, I had rather be set quick i' the earth, And bowl'd to death with turnips. Mrs. Page. Come, trouble not yourself: Good
master Fenton, I will not be your friend, nor enemy: . My daughter will I question how she loves you, And as I find her, so am I affected ; 'Till then, farewell, sir :- She must needs go in; Her father will be angry.
[Exeunt Mrs. Page and ANNE. Fent. Farewell, gentle mistress; farewell, Nan.
Quick. This is my doing now ;-Nay, said I, will you cast away your child on a fool, and a physician? . Look on master Fenton :- this is my doing.
Fent. I thank thee; and I pray thee, once to-night
Give my sweet Nan this ring: There's for thy pains.
[Erit. Quick. Now heaven send thee good fortune! A kind heart he hath: a woman would run through fire and water for such a kind heart. But yet, I would my master had mistress Anne; or I would master Slender had her; or, in sooth, I would master Fenton had her: I will do what I can for them all three; for so I have promised, and I'll be as good as my word; but speciously3 for master Fenton. Well, I must of another errand to sir John Falstaff from my two mistresses; What a beast am I to slack 4 it? [Exit.
Enter Falstaff and BARDOLPH.
Fal. Go fetch me a quart of sack; put a toast in't. [Exit BARD.] Have I lived to be carried in a basket, like a barrow of butcher's offal ; and to be thrown into the Thames? Well; if I be served such another trick, I'll have my brains ta'en out, and buttered, and give them to a dog for a new year's gift. The rogues slighted me into the river with as little remorses as they would have drowned a bitch’s blind puppies, fifteen i' the litter : and you may know by my size, that I have a kind of alacrity in sinking; if the bottom were as deep as hell, I should down. I had been
a Specially. Neglect. 5 Pity.
drowned, but that the shore was shelvy and shallow; a death that I abhor; for the water swells a man; and what a thing should I have been, when I had been swelled! I should have been a mountain of mummy.
Re-enter BARDOLPH, with the wine. Bard. Here's mistress Quickly, sir, to speak with you.
Fal. Come, let me pour in some sack to the Thames water; for my belly's as cold, as if I had swallowed snow-balls for pills to cool the reins. Call her in.
Bard. Come in, woman.
Enter Mrs. QUICKLY., Quick. By your leave; I cry you mercy: Give your worship good-morrow.
Fal. Take away these chalices : 6 Go brew me a pottle of sack finely.
Bar. With eggs, sir ?
Fal. 'Simple of itself; I'll no pullet-sperm in my brewage.- [Exit BARDOLPH.]–How now?
Quick. Marry, sir, I come to your worship from mistress Ford.
Fal. Mistress Ford! I have had ford enough: I was thrown into the ford: I have my belly full of : ford.
Quick. Alas the day! good heart, that was not her fault; she does so take on with her men; they mistook their erection.
Fal. So did I mine, to build upon a foolish woman's promise.
Quick. Well, she laments, sir, for it, that it would yearn your heart to see it. Her husband goes this morning a birding; she desires you once more to come to her between eight and nine : I must carry her word quickly: she'll make you amends, I warrant you.
Fal. Well, I will visit her : Tell her so; and bid her think, what a-man is : let her consider his frailty, and then judge of my merit.
Quick. I will tell her.
[Exit. Fal. I marvel, I hear not of master Brook; he sent me word to stay within: I like his money well. O, here he comes.
Ful. Now, master Brook ? you come to know what hath passed between me and Ford's wife?
Ford. That, indeed, sir John, is my business.
Fal. Master Brook, I will not lie to you; I was at ; her house the hour she appointed me.
Ford. And how sped you, sir?
Ford. How so, sir? Did she change her determination ?
Fal. No, master Brook; but the peaking cornuto, her husband, master Brook, dwelling in a continual ’larum of jealousy, comes me in the instant of our
encounter, after we had embraced, kissed, protested, and, as it were, spoke the prologue of our comedy; and at his heels a rabble of his companions, thither provoked and instigated by his distemper, and, forsooth, to search his house for his wife's love.
Ford. What, while you were there?
Ford. And did he search for you, and could not find you?
Fal. You shall hear. As good luck would have it, comes in one mistress Page; gives intelligence of Ford's approach; and, by her invention, and Ford's wife's distraction, they conveyed me into a buckbasket.
Ford. A buck-basket!
Fal. By the Lord, a buck-basket : rammed me in with foul shirts and smocks, socks, foul stockings, and greasy napkins; that, master Brook, there was the rankest compound of villainous smell, that ever offended nostril. Ford. And how long lay you there?
on there? Fal. Nay, you shall hear, master Brook, what I have suffered to bring this woman to evil for your good. Being thus crammed in the basket, a couple of Ford's knaves, his hinds, were called forth by their mistress, to carry me in the name of foul clothes to Datchet-lane: they took me on their shoulders; met the jealous knave their master in the door ; who asked them once or twice what they had in their basket : I
quaked for fear, lest the lunatic knave would have - searched it; but Fate, ordaining he should be a cuckold, held his hand. Well; on went he for a VOL. 1.