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that is not true. The knight, sir John, is there; and, I beseech you, be ruled by your well-willers. I will peat the door [knocks for master Page. What, hoa! Got pless your house here!
Page. Who's there?
Eva. Here is Got's plessing, and your friend, and justice Shallow: and here young master Slender; that, peradventures, 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.
Shal. Master Page, I am glad to see you ; Much good do it your good heart! I wished your venison better ; it was ill killid :-How doth good mistress Page?--and I love you always with my heart, la ; with my heart. Page. Sir, I thank
you. Shal. Sir, I thank you ; by yea and no, I do. Page. I am glad to see you, good master Slender.
Slen. How does your fallow greyhound, sir? I heard say, he was out-run on Cotsale.
Page. It could not be judg’d, sir.
Shal. That he will not ;—'tis your fault, 'tis your fault:-"Tis a good dog.
Page. A cur, sir.
Shal. Sir, he's a good dog, and a fair dog; Can there be more said? he is good, and fair. Is sir John Falstaff here?
How does your
fallow greyhound, sir ? I heard say, he was outrun on Cotsale.] Cotswold, in Gloucestershire, where there was an annual celebration of games, consisting of rural sports and exercises.
Page. Sir, he is within ; and I would I could do a good office between you. Eva. It is spoke as a christians ought to speak. Shal. He hath wrong’d me, master Page. Page. Sir, he doth in some sort confess it.
Shal. If it be confess'd, it is not redress'd; is not that so, master Page? He hath wrong'd me; indeed, he hath ;--at a word he hath;-believe me; Robert Shallow, esquire, saith he is wrong'd.
Page. Here comes sir John.
Enter sir John FalstafF, BARDOLPII, Nym, and
Fal. Now, master Shallow; you'll complain of me to the king ? Shal. Knight you have beaten have beaten my men,
my deer, and broke open my lodge.
Fal. But not kiss'd your keeper's daughter?
Fal. I will answer it straight ;-I have done all this :-That is now answer’d.
Shal. The Council shall know this.
Fal. 'Twere better for you, if it were known in counsel : you'll be laugh’d at.
Eva. Pauca verba, sir John, goot worts.
Fal. Good worts! good cabbage. —Slender, I broke your
What matter have you against me?
Slen. Marry, sir, I have matter in my head against you; and against your coney-catching rascals, Bardolph, Nym, and Pistol. They carried me to the
Good worts! good cabbage.] Worts was the ancient name of all the cabbage kind.
1-coney-catching rascals,] A coney-catcher was, in the time of Elizabeth, a common name for a cheat or a sharper.
tavern, and made me drunk, and afterwards picked my pocket.
Bard. You Banbury cheese!8
Nym. Slice, I say! pauca, pauca; slice! that's my humour:
Slen. Where's Simple, my man ?-can you tell, cousin ?
Eva. 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 myself, 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.
Eva. 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.
Eva. The tevil with his tam! what phrase is this, He hears with ear? Why, it is affectations.
Fal. Pistol, did you pick master Slender's purse?
Slen. 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 shil
8 You Banbury cheese! ] You are like a Banbury cheese, nothing but paring.
9 How now, Mephostophilus?] This is the name of a spirit or familiar, in the old story book of Sir John Faustus.
Edward shovel-boards,] were the shillings of Edward VI; the game of shovel-board, or shuffle-board, was played with them in Shadwell's time,
ling and two pence a-piece of Yead Miller, by these gloves.
Fal. Is this true, Pistol?
and master mine,
Slen. By these gloves, then 'twas he.
Nym. Be advised, sir, and pass good humours: I will say, marry trap, with you, if you run the nuthook’s humour' on me: that is the very note of it.
Slen. 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.
Fal. What say you, Scarlet and John ?
Bard. Why, sir, for my part, I say, the gentleman had drunk himself out of his five sentences.
Eva. It is his five senses : fie, what the ignorance is !
Bard. And being fap,' sir, was, as they say, cashier'd ; and so conclusions pass'd the careires.
Slen. Ay, you spake in Latin then too; but 'tis
2 I combat challenge of this latten bilbo:] A latten bilbo means, I believe, no more than a blade as thin as a lath-a vice's dagger. Steevens.
labras) i. e. lips.
-marry trap,] When a man was caught in his own stratagem, I suppose the exclamation of insult was--marry, trap!
Johnson. nuthook's humour - ) i. e. if you say I am a thief.
Scarlet and John?] The names of two of Robin Hood's companions; but the humour consists in the allusion to Bar. dolph's red face. And being fap,] i. e. drunk,
careires.] i. e. “ and so in the end he reel'd about with a circuitous motion, like a horse, passing a carier."
no matter: I'll ne'er be drunk whilst I live again, but in honest, civil, godly company, for this trick: if I be drunk, I'll be drunk with those that have the fear of God, and not with drunken knaves.
Eva. So Got ’udge me, that is a virtuous mind.
Fal. You hear all these matters denied, gentle. men; you hear it,
Enter Mistress ANNE Page with wine ; Mistress
Ford and Mistress Page following. Page. Nay, daughter, carry the wine in ; we'll drink within.
[Exit ANNE Page. Slen. O heaven! this is mistress Anne Page. Page. How now, mistress Ford ?
Fal. Mistress Ford, by my troth, you are very well met: by your leave, good mistress. [kissing 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 but Shal. SLENDER and Evans, Slen. I had rather than forty shillings, I had my book of Songs and Sonnets here :
How now, Simple! Where have you been? I must wait on myself, must I? You have not The Book of Riddles' about
have you ?
my book of Songs and Sonnets here :] “ Songes and Sonnettes, written by the Right Honourable Lord Henry Howard, late Earle of Surrey, and others.” Slender laments that he has not this fashionable book about him, supposing it might have assisted him in paying his addresses to Anne Page. Malone.
- The Book of Riddles - ] This appears to have been a popular book, and is enumerated with others in The English Courtier, and Country Gentleman,