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and we'll be all three sworn brothers to France; let it be so, good corporal Nym.
Nym. 'Faith, I will live so long as I may, that's the certain of it ; and when I cannot live any longer, I will do as I may: that is my rest,' that is the rendezvous of it.
Bard. It is certain, corporal, that he is married to Nell Quickly: and, certainly, she did you wrong; for you were troth-plight to her.
Nym. I cannot tell; things must be as they may. Men may sleep, and they may have their throats about them at that time; and, some say, knives have edges. It must be as it may: though patience be a tired mare, yet she will plod. There must be conclusions. Well, I cannot tell.2
Enter Pistol and Mrs. Quickly. Bard. Here comes ancient Pistol, and his wife: --good corporal, be patient here.--How now, mine host Pistol?
Pist. Base tike, call'st thou me-host? Now, by this hand, I swear, I scorn the term ; Nor shall my Nell keep lodgers.
Quick. No, by my troth, not long; for we cannot lodge and board a dozen or fourteen gentlewomen, that live honestly by the prick of their needles, but it will be thought we keep a bawdy-house straight. [Nym draws his sword.] O well-i-day, Lady, if he be not drawn now !4 we shall see wilful adultery and murder committed. Good lieutenant Bardolph-good corporal, offer nothing here.
1 «That is my rest;
» that is my determination. 2 i. e. “I know not what to say or think of it." See this phrase amply illustrated in Mr. Gifford's Ben Jonson, vol. i. p. 125. No phrase is more common in our old dramatic writers.
3 i. e. base fellow. Still used in the north ; where a tike is also a dog of a large, common breed.
4 The folio has “O well-a-day, Lady, if he be not hewn now;" an evident error of the press. The quarto reads, “O Lord! here's corporal Nym's--now," &c.
Přst. Pish for thee, Iceland dog!! thou prick-eared cur of Iceland !
Quick. Good corporal Nym, show the valor of a man, and put up thy sword. Nym. Will you shog off? I would have you solus.
[Sheathing his sword. Pist. Solus, egregious dog? O viper vile ! The solus in thy most marvellous face; The solus in thy teeth, and in thy throat, And in thy hateful lungs, yea, in thy maw, perdy; And, which is worse, within thy nasty mouth! I do retort the solus in thy bowels; For I can take, and Pistol's cock is up, And flashing fire will follow.
Nym. I am not Barbason ; : you cannot conjure me. I have a humor to knock you indifferently well. If you grow foul with me, Pistol, I will scour you with my rapier, as I may, in fair terms; if you would walk off
, I would prick your guts a little, in good terms, as I may; and that's the humor of it.
Pist. O, braggard vile, and damned furious wight! The grave doth gape, and doting death is near; Therefore exhale.
[Pistol and Nym draw. Bard. Hear me, hear me what I say ;-he that strikes the first stroke, I'll run him up to the hilts, as I am a soldier.
[Draws. Pist. An oath of mickle might; and fury shall abate.
1 “ Iceland dogges, curled and rough all over, which, by reason of the length of their heare, make show neither of face nor of body. And yet thes curres, forsoothe, because they are so strange, are greatly set by, esteemed, taken up, and made of, many times instead of the spaniell gentle or comforter." Abraham Fleming's translation of Caius de Canibus, 1576, Of English Dogges.--Island cur is again used as a term of contempt in Epigrams served out in Fisty-two several Dishes;” no date :
“He wears a gown lac'd round, laid down with furre,
Could thrust his finger, but this island curre.” 2 « For I can take.” Malone would change this, without necessity, to “ I can talk.” Pistol only means, “I can understand or comprehend you.”
3 Barbason is the name of a demon mentioned in The Merry Wives of Windsor.
Give me thy fist, thy fore-foot to me give,
Nym. I will cut thy throat, one time or other, in fair terms.; that is the humor of it. Pist. Coupe le gorge, that's the word ?-I thee defy
again. O, hound of Crete, think'st thou my spouse to get? No; to the spital go, And from the powdering-tub of infamy Fetch forth the lazar kite of Cressid's kind, Doll Tear-sheet she by name, and her espouse. I have, and I will hold, the quondam Quickly For the only she; and-pauca, there's enough.
Enter the Boy. Boy. Mine host Pistol, you must come to my master,--and you, hostess ;-he is very sick, and would to bed.—Good Bardolph, put thy nose between his sheets, and do the office of a warming-pan : "faith, he's
Bard. Away, you rogue.
Quick. By my troth, he'll yield the crow a pudding one of these days; the king has killed his heart. Good husband, come home presently.
Exeunt Mrs. Quickly and Boy. Bard. Come, shall I make you two friends? We must to France together. Why the devil should we keep knives to cut one another's throats ? Pist. Let floods o'erswell, and fiends for food howl
on ! Nym. You'll pay me the eight shillings I won of you at betting?
Pist. Base is the slave that pays.
Bard. By this sword, he that makes the first thrust, I'll kill him; by this sword, I will.
1 « The lazar kite of Cressid's kind.”. Of Cressida's nature, see Troilus and Cressida.
Pist. Sword is an oath, and oaths must have their
Bard. Corporal Nym, an thou wilt be friends, be friends; an thou wilt not, why then be enemies with me too. Prythee, put up.
Nym. I shall have my eight shillings, I won of you at betting?
Pist. À noble shalt thou have, and present pay;
Nym. I shall have my noble ?
Re-enter Mrs. QUICKLY. Quick. As ever you came of women, come in quickly to sir John. Ah, poor heart! he is so shaked of a burning quotidian tertian, that it is most lamentable to behold. Sweet men, come to him.
Nym. The king hath run bad humors on the knight, that's the even of it.
Pist. Nym, thou hast spoke the right; His heart is fracted and corroborate.
Nym. The king is a good king; but it must be as it may; he passes some humors, and careers.
Pist. Let us condole the knight; for, lambkins, we will live.
1 The noble was worth six shillings and eight-pence.
Enter EXETER, BEDFORD, and WESTMORELAND. Bed. 'Fore God, his grace is bold to trust these
traitors. Exe. They shall be apprehended by and by. West. How smooth and even they do bear them
selves! As if allegiance in their bosoms sat, Crowned with faith and constant loyalty.
Bed. The king hath note of all that they intend, By interception which they dream not of.
Exe. Nay, but the man that was his bedfellow, Whom he hath cloyed” and graced with princely
favors, That he should, for a foreign purse, so sell His sovereign's life to death and treachery!
Trumpet sounds. Enter King HENRY, SCROOP, CAM
-- BRIDGE, GREY, Lords, and Attendants. K. Hen. Now sits the wind fair, and we will aboard. My lord of Cambridge,--and my kind lord of Ma
sham,And you, my gentle knight, -give me your thoughts. Think you not, that the powers we bear with us, Will cut their passage through the force of France ; Doing the execution, and the act, For which we have in head assembled them?
Scroop. No doubt, my liege, if each man do his best.
1 “That was his bedfellow.” Thus Holinshed: The said lord Scroop was in such favor with the king, that he admitted him sometimes to be his bedfellow.". This familiar appellation of bedfellow was common among the ancient nobility. This custom, which now appears so strange and unseemly to us, continued to the middle of the seventeenth century, if not later. Cromwell obtained much of his intelligence during the civil wars from the mean men with whom he slept.
2 “ Whom he hath cloyed and graced.” The quarto reads, “ dulled and cloyed."