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Fal. Good master Brook, I desire more acquaintance of you.
Ford. Good sir John, I sue for yours: not to charge you; for I must let you understand, I think myself in better plight for a lender than you are; the which hath something emboldened me to this unseasoned intrusion; for they say, if money go before, all ways do lie open.
Fal. Money is a good soldier, sir, and will on. Ford. Troth, and I have a bag of money here troubles me: if you will help me to bear it, sir John, take all, or half, for easing me of the carriage. Fal. Sir, I know not how I may deserve to be your porter.
Ford. I will tell you, sir, if you will give me the Fal. Speak, good master Brook; I shall be glad to be your servant.
Ford. Sir, I hear you are a scholar,--I will be brief with you, and you have been a man long known to me, though I had never so good means, as desire, to make myself acquainted with you. I shall discover a thing to you, wherein I must very much lay open mine own imperfection: but, good sir John, as you have one eye upon my follies, as you hear them unfolded, turn another into the register of your own: that I may pass with a reproof the easier, sith, you yourself know, how easy it is to be such an offender.
Fal. Very well, sir; proceed.
Ford. There is a gentlewoman in this town, her husband's name is Ford.
Fal. Well, sir.
Ford. I have long loved her, and, I protest to you, bestowed much on her; followed her with a doting observance; engrossed opportunities to meet her; fee'd every slight occasion, that could but niggardly give me sight of her; not only bought many presents to give her, but have given largely to many, to know what she would have given: briefly, I have pursued her, as love hath pursued me; which hath been, on the wing of all occasions. But whatsoever I have merited, either in my mind or in my means, meed, I am sure, I have received none; unless experience be a jewel; that I have purchased at an infinite rate; and that hath taught me to say this:
Love like a shadow flies, when substance love pursues;
Ford. I would you knew Ford, sir; that you might avoid him, if you saw him.
Fal. Hang him, mechanical salt-butter rogue! I will stare him out of his wits; I will awe him with my cudgel: it shall hang like a meteor o'er the cuckold's horns: master Brook, thou shalt know, I will predominate o'er the peasant, and thou shalt lie with his wife.-Come to me soon at night:Ford's a knave, and I will aggravate his stile; thou, master Brook, shalt know him for a knave and cuckold-come to me soon at night. [Exit. My heart is ready to crack with impatience. Ford. What a damned Epicurean rascal is this! Who says, this is improvident jealousy? My wife hath sent to him, the hour is fixed, the match is made. Would any man have thought this?-See the hell of having a false woman! my bed shall be
Fal. Have you received no promise of satisfaction at her hands?
Fal. Have you importuned her to such a purpose? abused, my coffers ransacked, my reputation gnawn Ford. Never. at; and I shall not only receive this villainous wrong, but stand under the adoption abominable terms, and by him that does me this wrong. Terms! names!- -Amaimon sounds well; Lucifer, well; Barbason, well; yet they are devils' additions, the names of fiends: but cuckold! wittolcuckold! the devil himself hath not such a name. Page is an ass, a secure ass; he will trust his wife, he will not be jealous: I will rather trust a Fleming with my butter, parson Hugh the Welchman with my cheese, an Irishman with my aqua-vitæ bottle, or a thief to walk my ambling gelding, than my wife with herself then she plots, then she ruminates, then she devises and what they think in their hearts they may effect, they will break their hearts but they will effect. Heaven be praised for my jealousy!-Eleven o'clock the hour;-I will prevent this, detect my wife, be revenged on Falstaff, and laugh at Page. I will about it; better three hours too soon, than a minute too late. Fie, fie, fie! cuckold! cuckold! cuckold! [Exit.
Fal. Of what quality was your Ford. Like a fair house, built upon another man's ground; so that I have lost my edifice, by mistaking the place where I erected it. [me?
Fal. To what purpose have you unfolded this to Ford. When I have told you that, I have told you all. Some say, that, though she appear honest to me, yet, in other places, she enlargeth her mirth so far, that there is shrewd construction made of her. Now, sir John, here is the heart of my purpose: You are a gentleman of excellent breeding, admirable discourse, of great admittance, authentic in your place and person, generally allowed for your many war-like, court-like, and learned preparations.
Fal. O, sir!
enjoy? Methinks, you prescribe to yourself very preposterously.
Ford. O, understand my drift! she dwells so securely on the excellency of her honour, that the folly of my soul dares not present itself; she is too bright to be looked against. Now, could I come to her with any detection in my hand, my desires had instance and argument to commend themselves; I could drive her then from the ward of her purity, her reputation, her marriage vow, and a thousand other her defences, which now are too strongly embattled against me: What say yon to't, sir John?
Fal. Master Brook, I will first make bold with your money; next, give me your hand; and last, as I am gentleman, you shall, if you will, enjoy Ford's wife.
Ford. O, good sir!
Fal. Master Brook, I say you shall. [none. Ford. Want no money, sir John, you shall want Fal. Want no mistress Ford, master Brook, you shall want none. I shall be with her, (I may tell you,) by her own appointment; even as you came in to me, her assistant, or go-between, parted from me: say, I shall be with her between ten and eleven; for at that time the jealous rascally knave, her husband, will be forth. Come you to me at night; you shall know how I speed.
Ford. I am blest in your acquaintance. Do you know Ford, sir?
Ford. Believe it, for you know it:-There is money; spend it, spend it; spend more; spend all I have; only give me so much of your time in exchange of it, as to lay an amiable siege to the honesty of this Ford's wife: use your art of wooing, win her to consent to you; if any man may, you
may as soon as any.
Fal. Would it apply well to the vehemency of your affection, that I should win what you would
Fal. Hang him, poor cuckoldly knave! I know him not-yet I wrong him to call him poor; they say, the jealous wittolly knave hath masses of money for the which his wife seems to me well-favoured. I will use her as the key of the cuckoldly rogue's coffer; and there's my harvest-home.
SCENE III.-Windsor Park.
Caius. Jack Rugby!
Caius. Vat is de clock, Jack?
Rug. 'Tis past the hour, sir, that sir Hugh promised to meet.
Caius. By gar, he has save his soul, dat he is no come; he has pray his Pible vell, dat he is no come: by gar, Jack Rugby, he is dead already, if
he be come.
Rug. He is wise, sir; he knew your worship would kill him, if he came.
Caius. By gar, de herring is no dead, so as I vill kill him. Take your rapier, Jack; I vill tell you how I vill kill him.
Rag. Alas, sir, I cannot feuce.
Enter Host, SHALLOW, SLENDER, and PAGE.
Host. 'Bless thee, bully doctor.
Host. To see thee fight, to see thee foin, to see thee traverse, to see thee here, to see thee there; to see thee pass thy punto, thy stock, thy reverse, thy distance, thy montánt. Is he dead, my opian? is he dead, my Francisco? ha, bully! What says my Esculapius? my Galen? my heart of elder? ha! is he dead, bully Stale? is he dead?
Caius. By gar, he is de coward Jack priest of the world; he is not show his face.
Host. Thou art a Castilian king, Urinal! Hector of Greece, my boy!
SCENE I-A Field near Frogmore.
Enter Sir HUGH EVANS and SIMPLE.
Eva. I pray you now, good master Slender's Ethi-serving-man, and friend Simple by your name, calls himself Doctor of Physic? which way have you looked for master Caius, that
Sim. Marry, sir, the city-ward, the park-ward, every way; old Windsor way, and every way but
the town way.
Eva. I most fehemently desire you, you will also look that way.
Sim. I will, sir.
Caius. I pray you, bear vitness dat me have stay six or seven, two or tree hours for him, and be is no come.
Shal. We will do it.
Page, Shal. and Slen. Adieu, good master doctor. [Exeunt Paye, Shallow, and Slender. Caius. By gar, me vill kill de priest; for he speak for a jack-an-ape to Anne Page.
Host. Let him die: but, first, sheath thy impatience; throw cold water on thy choler: go about the fields with me through Frogmore; I will bring thee where mistress Anne Page is, at a farmhouse, a-feasting: and thou shalt woo her: Cry'd game, said I well?
Page. Sir Hugh is there, is he?
Host. He is there: see what humour he is in; and I will bring the doctor about by the fields: will it do well?
Caius. By gar, me tank you for dat: by gar, love you; and I shall procure-a you de good guest, de earl, de knight, de lords, de gentlemen, my patients.
Host. For the which I will be thy adversary towards Anne Page; said I well?
Caius. By gar, 'tis good; vell said.
Host. Let us wag then.
Caius. Come at my heels, Jack Rugby. [Exeunt.
Eva. 'Pless my soul! how full of cholers I am,
To shallow rivers, to whose falls
There will we make our peds of roses,
'Mercy on me! I have a great dispositions to cry.
And a thousand vagram posies.
Sim. Yonder he is coming, this way, sir Hugh.
To shallow rivers, to whose falls—
Eva. Pray you, give me my gown; or else keep it in your arms.
Enter PAGE, SHALLOW, and SLENDER. Shal. How now, master parson? Good-morrow, good sir Hugh. Keep a gamester from the dice, and a good student from his book, and it is wonSlen. Ah, sweet Anne Page! [derful.
Page. Save you, good sir Hugh!
Page. And youthful still, in your doublet and hose, this raw rheumatic day?
Eva. There is reasons and causes for it.
Page. We are come to you, to do a good office, master parson?
Eva. Fery well: What is it?
Page. Yonder is a most reverend gentleman, who, belike, having received wrong by some per
son, is at most odds with his own gravity and patience, that ever you saw.
Shal. I have lived fourscore years, and upwards; I never heard a man of his place, gravity, and learning, so wide of his own respect.
Eva. What is he?
Page. I think you know him; master doctor Caius, the renowned French physician.
Eva. Got's will, and his passion of my heart! I had as lief you would tell me of a mess of porridge. Page. Why?
Eva. He has no more knowledge in Hibocrates and Galen,—and he is a knave besides; a cowardly knave, as you would desires to be acquainted withal. Page. I warrant you, he's the man should fight | with him.
Slen. O, sweet Anne Page!
Shal. It appears so, by his weapons:-Keep them asunder;-here comes doctor Caius.
Enter Host, CAIUS, and RUGBY.
Page. Nay, good master parson, keep in your Shal. So do you, good master doctor. [weapon. Host. Disarm them, and let them question; let them keep their limbs whole, and hack our English. let-a me speak a word vit Caius. I pray you, your ear: Verefore vill you not meet-a me? Eva. Pray you, use your patience: In good time. Caius. By gar, you are de coward, de Jack dog,
Eva. Pray you, let us not be laughing-stogs to other men's humours; I desire you in friendship, and I will one way or other make you amends :-I will knog your urinals about your knave's cogscomb, for missing your meetings and appointments.
Caius. Diable!-Jack Rugby,-mine Host de Jarterre, have I not stay for him, to kill him? have I not, at de place I did appoint?
Eva. As I am a Christian's soul, now, look this is the place appointed; I'll be judgment by
mine host of the Garter.
Host. Peace, I say, Guallia and Gaul, French and Welch; soul-curer and body-curer.
Caius. Ay, dat is very good! excellent!
Host. Peace, I say; hear mine host of the Garter. Am I politic? am I subtle? am I a Machiavel? Shall I lose my doctor? no; he gives me the potions, and the motions. Shall I lose my parson? my priest? my sir Hugh? no; he gives me the proverbs, and the no-verbs.-Give me thy hand, terrestrial; so:-Give me thy hand, celestial; so.
-Boys of art, I have deceived you both; I have directed you to wrong places: your hearts are mighty, your skins are whole, and let burnt sack be the issue.-Come, lay their swords to pawn:— Follow me, lad of peace; follow, follow, follow. Shal. Trust me, a mad host:-Follow, gentlemen, follow.
Rob. I had rather, forsooth, go before you like a man, than follow him like a dwarf.
Mrs. Page. O you are a flattering boy; now, I see, you'll be a courtier.
SCENE II.-The Street in Windsor.
Mrs. Page. Nay, keep your way, little gallant; you were wont to be a follower, but now you are a leader: Whether had you rather lead mine eyes, or eye your master's heels?
Ford. Sir John Falstaff!
Mrs. Page. He, he; I can never hit on's name. -There is such a league between my good man and he-Is your wife at home, indeed?" Ford. Indeed, she is.
Mrs. Page. By your leave, sir;-I am sick, till I see her. [Exeunt Mrs. Page and Robin. hath he any thinking? Sure, they sleep; he hath Ford. Has Page any brains? hath he any eyes? no use of them. Why, this boy will carry a letter twenty miles, as easy as a cannon will shoot pointblank twelve score. He pieces out his wife's inclination; he gives her folly motion, and advantage: with her. A man may hear this shower sing in the and now she's going to my wife, and Falstaff's boy wind!—and Falstaff's boy with her!-Good plots! they are laid; and our revolted wives share damnation together. Well; I will take him, then torture my wife, pluck the borrowed veil of modesty from the so seeming Mrs. Page, divulge Page himself for a secure and wilful Actæon; and to these violent proceedings all my neighbours shall cry aim. (Clock strikes.) The clock gives me my cue, and my assurance bids me search; there I shall find Falstaff: I shall be rather praised for this, than mocked; for it is as positive as the earth is firm, that Falstaff is there: I will go.
Enter PAGE, SHALLOW, SLENDER, HOST, Sir HUGH EVANS, CAIUS, and RUGBY.
Shal. Page, &c. Well met, master Ford. Ford. Trust me, a good knot: I have good cheer at home; and, I pray you, all go with me.
Shal. I must excuse myself, master Ford. Slen. And so must I, sir; we have appointed to dine with mistress Anne, and I would not break with her for more money than I'll speak of.
Shal. We have lingered about a match between Anne Page and my cousin Slender, and this day we shall have our answer.
Slen. I hope, I have your good will, father Page. Page. You have, master Slender; I stand wholly for you:-but my wife, master doctor, is for you altogether.
Caius. Ay, by gar; and de maid is love-a me; my nursh-a Quickly tell me so mush.
Host. What say you to young master Fentou? he capers, he dances, he has eyes of youth, he writes verses, he speaks holyday, he smells April and May he will carry't, he will carry't; 'tis in his buttons; he will carry't.
Page. Not by my consent, I promise you. The gentleman is of no having: he kept company with the wild Prince and Poins; he is of too high a region, he knows too much. No, he shall not knit a knot in his fortunes with the finger of my substance: if he take her, let him take her simply; the wealth I have waits on my consent, and my consent goes not that way.
Ford. I beseech you, heartily, some of you go home with me to dinner; besides your cheer, you shall have sport; I will shew you a monster.
Master doctor, you shall go ;-so shall you, master Page-and you, sir Hugh.
Shal. Well, fare you well:-we shall have the freer wooing at master Page's.
[Exeunt Shallow and Slender. Caius. Go home, John Rugby; I come anon. [Exit Rugby. Host. Farewell, my hearts: I will to my honest knight Falstaff, and drink canary with him.
[Exit Host. Ford. (Aside.) I think, I shall drink in pipewine first with him; I'll make him dance. Will you go, gentles?
All. Have with you, to see this monster. [Exeunt.
SCENE III-A Room in Ford's house. Enter Mistress FORD and Mistress PAGE. Mrs. Ford. What, John! what, Robert! Mrs. Page. Quickly, quickly! Is the buck-basket
Mrs. Ford. I warrant :-What, Robin, I say. Enter Servants, with a basket.
Mrs. Page. Come, come, come. Mrs. Ford. Here, set it down. [be brief. Mrs. Page. Give your men the charge; we must Mrs. Ford. Marry, as I told you before, John, and Robert, be ready here hard by in the brew house; and, when I suddenly call you, come forth, and (without any pause, or staggering,) take this basket on your shoulders: that done, trudge with it in all haste, and carry it among the whitsters in Datchet mead, and there empty it in the muddy ditch, close by the Thames side.
Mrs. Page. You will do it?
Mrs. Ford. I have told them over and over; they lack no direction: Be gone, and come when you are called. [Exeunt Servants. Mrs. Page. Here comes little Robin.
Mrs. Ford, How now, my eyas-musket? what news with you?
Rob. My master, sir John, is come in at your backdoor, mistress Ford; and requests your company. Mrs. Page. You little Jack-a-lent, have you been true to us?
Rob. Ay, I'll be sworn: My master knows not of your being here; and hath threatened to put me into everlasting liberty, if I tell you of it; for, he swears, he'll turn me away.
Mrs. Page. Thou'rt a good boy; this secrecy of thine shall be a tailor to thee, and shall make thee a new doublet and hose.-I'll go hide me.
Mrs. Ford. Do so:-Go tell thy master, I am alone. Mrs. Page, remember you your cue. [Exit Robin. Mrs. Page. I warrant thee; if I do not act it, [Exit Mrs. Page.
Mrs. Ford. Go to then; we'll use this unwholesome humidity, this gross watery pumpion ;-we'll teach him how to know turtles from jays.
Fal. Have I caught thee, my heavenly jewel? Why, now let me die, for I have lived long enough; this is the period of my ambition: O this blessed
Mrs. Ford. O sweet Sir John!
Fal. Mistress Ford, I cannot cog, I cannot prate, mistress Ford. Now shall I sin in my wish: I would thy husband were dead; I'll speak it before the best ford, I would make thee my lady.
Mrs. Ford. I your lady, sir John! alas, I should be a pitiful lady.
Fal. Let the court of France show me such another; I see how thine eye would emulate the diamond: Thou hast the right arched bent of the brow, that becomes the ship-tire, the tire-valiant, or any tire of Venetian admittance.
Mrs. Ford. A plain kerchief, sir John: my brows become nothing else; nor that well neither.
Fal. Thou art a traitor to say so: thou would'st make an absolute courtier; and the firm fixture of thy foot would give an excellent motion to thy gait, in a semi-circled farthingale. I see what thou wert, if fortune thy foe were not: nature is thy friend: Come, thou canst not hide it. [me. Mrs. Ford. Believe me, there's no such thing in Fal. What made me love thee? let that persuade thee, there's something extraordinary in thee. Come, I cannot cog, and say, thou art this and that, like a many of these lisping hawthorn buds, that come like women in men's apparel, and smell like Buckler'sbury in simple-time; I cannot but I love thee none but thee; and thou deservest it.
Mrs. Ford. Do not betray me, sir; I fear, you love mistress Page.
Fal. Thou might'st as well say, I love to walk by the Counter-gate; which is as hateful to me as the reek of a lime-kiln.
Mrs. Ford. Well, heaven knows, how I love you; and you shall one day find it.
Fal. Keep in that mind; I'll deserve it.
Mrs. Ford. Nay, I must tell you, so you do; or else I could not be in that mind.
here's mistress Page at the door, sweating, and Rob. (within.) Mistress Ford, mistress Ford! blowing, and looking wildly, and would needs speak with you presently. [behind the arras. Fal. She shall not see me; I will ensconce me Mrs. Ford. Pray you, do so she's a very tattling (Falstaff hides himself.) Enter Mistress PAGE and ROBIN. What's the matter? how now?
Mrs. Page. O mistress Ford, what have you done? You're shamed, you are overthrown, you are undone for ever. [Page? Mrs. Ford. What's the matter, good mistress Mrs. Page. O well-a-day, mistress Ford! having an honest man to your husband, to give him such cause of suspicion!
Mrs. Ford. What cause of suspicion?
Mrs. Page. What cause of suspicion?-Out upon you! how am I mistook in you!
Mrs. Ford. Why, alas! what's the matter? Mrs. Page. Your husband's coming hither, woman, with all the officers in Windsor, to search for a gentleman, that, he says, is here now in the house, sence: You are undone. by your consent, to take an ill advantage of his ab[so, I hope. Mrs. Ford. Speak louder.-(Aside.Tis not Mrs. Page. Pray heaven it be not so, that you have such a man here; but 'tis most certain, your husband's coming with half Windsor at his heels, to search for such a one. I come before to tell you; If you know yourself clear, why I am glad of it: but if you have a friend here, convey, convey him out. Be not amazed; call all your senses to you: defend your reputation, or bid farewell to your good
life for ever.
Mrs. Ford. What shall I do?-There is a gentleman, my dear friend; and I fear not mine own shame, so much as his peril: I had rather than a thousand pound, he were out of the house.
Mrs. Page. For shame, never stand you had rather, and you had rather; your husband's here at house you cannot hide him.-O, how have you dehand, bethink you of some conveyance: in the ceived me!-Look, here is a basket; if he be of any reasonable stature, he may creep in here; and throw foul linen upon him, as if it were going to bucking: Or, it is whiting-time, send him by your two men to Datchet mead. [shall I do? Mrs. Ford. He's too big to go in there: What Re-enter FALSTAFF.
Fal. Let me see't, let me see't! O let me see't! I'll in, I'll in ;-follow your friend's counsel ;-I'll in.
Mrs. Page. What! Sir John Falstaff! Are these your letters, knight?
Fal. I love thee, and none but thee; help me away: let me creep in here; I'll never(He goes into the basket; they cover him with foul linen.) Mrs. Page. Help to cover your master, boy: Call your men,mistress Ford :-You dissembling knight! Mrs. Ford. What, John, Robert, John! [Exit Robin. Re-enter Servants.] Go take up these clothes here, quickly; where's the cowl-staff? Look, how you drumble: carry them to the laundress in Datchet mead; quickly, come.
Enter FORD, PAGE, CAIUS, and Sir HUGH EVANS.
Ford. Pray you, come near: if I suspect without cause, why then make sport at me, then let me be your jest; I deserve it.-How now? whither bear you this?
Serv. To the laundress, forsooth.
Mrs. Ford. Why, what have you to do whither they bear it? You were best meddle with buck-washing.
Ford. Buck? I would I could wash myself of the buck! Buck, buck, buck? Ay, buck! I warrant you, buck; and of the season too; it shall appear. [Exeunt Servants with the basket.] Gentlemen, I have dreamed to-night; I'll tell you my dream. Here, here, here be my keys: ascend my chambers, search, seek, find out: I'll warrant we'll unkennel the fox-Let me stop this way first :so, now uncape.
Page. Good master Ford, be contented: you wrong yourself too much.
Ford. True, master Page.-Up, Gentlemen; you shall see sport anon: follow me, gentlemen. [Exit. Eva. This is fery fantastical humours, and jealousies.
Mrs. Ford. I think, my husband hath some special suspicion of Falstaff's being here, for I never saw him so gross in his jealousy till now.
Mrs. Page. I will lay a plot to try that: And we will yet have more tricks with Falstaff: his dissolute disease will scarce obey this medicine.
I would not have your distemper in this kind, for the wealth of Windsor Castle.
Ford. 'Tis my fault, master Page: I suffer for it. Eva. You suffer for a pad conscience: your wife is as honest a 'omans, as I will desires among five thousand, and five hundred too.
Caius. By gar, I see 'tis an honest woman. Ford. Well;-I promised you a dinner :-Come, come, walk in the park: I pray you, pardon me; I will hereafter make known to you, why I have done this.-Come, wife;-come, mistress Page; I pray you, pardon me; pray heartily, pardon me.
mock him. I do invite you to-morrow morning to Page. Let's go in, gentlemen; but, trust me, we'll my house to breakfast; after, we'll a-birding together; I have a fine hawk for the bush: Shall it be so? Ford. Any thing. [company. Eva. If there is one, I shall make two in the Caius. If there be one or two, I shall make-a de Eva. In your teeth for shame. [turd.
Ford. Pray you go, master Page.
Eva. I pray you now, remembrance to-morrow on the lousy knave, mine host.
Caius. Dat is good; by gar, vit all my heart. mockeries. Eva. A lousy knave; to have his gibes, and his [Exeunt.
Mrs. Ford. Shall we send that foolish carrion, mistress Quickly, to him, and excuse his throwing into the water; and give him another hope, to betray him to another punishment?
Mrs. Page. We'll do it; let him be sent for tomorrow eight o'clock, to have amends. Re-enterFORD, PAGE,CAIUS, and Sir HUGH EVANS. Ford. I cannot find him: may be the knave bragged of that, he could not compass.
Mrs. Page. Heard you that?
Mrs. Ford. Ay, ay, peace ;-You use me well, master Ford, do you?
Ford. Ay, I do so.
Mrs. Ford. Heaven make you better than your
Eva. If there be any pody in the house, and in the chambers, and in the coffers, and in the presses, heaven forgive my sins at the day of judgment!
Caius. By gar, nor I too; dere is no bodies. Page. Fie, fie, master Ford! are you not ashamed? What spirit, what devil suggests this imagination?
SCENE IV-A Room in Page's House. Enter FENTON and Mistress ANNE PAGE. Fent. I see, I cannot get thy father's love; Therefore no more turn me to him, sweet Nan. Anne. Alas! how then? Fent.
Why, thou must be thyself. He doth object, I am too great of birth; And that, my state being gall'd with my expence, I seek to heal it only by his wealth: Besides these, other bars he lays before me,My riots past, my wild societies; And tells me, 'tis a thing impossible I should love thee, but as a property. Anne. May be, he tells you true.
Fent. No, heaven so speed me in my time to come! Albeit, I will confess, thy father's wealth Was the first motive that I woo'd thee, Anne; Yet, wooing thee, I found thee of more value Than stamps in gold, or sums in sealed bags; And 'tis the very riches of thyself That now I aim at.
Anne. Gentle master Fenton, Yet seek my father's love: still seek it, sir: If opportunity and humblest suit Cannot attain it, why then,-Hark you hither. (They converse apart. Enter SHALLOW, SLENDER, and MRS. QUICKLY. Shal. Break their talk, mistress Quickly; my kinsman shall speak for himself.
Slen. I'll make a shaft or a bolt on't: slid, 'tis but venturing.
Shal. Be not dismay'd.
Slen. No, she shall not dismay me: I care not for that, but that I am afeard.
Quick. Hark ye; master Slender would speak a word with you.
Anne. I come to him.--This is my father's choice. O, what a world of vile ill-favour'd faults Looks handsome in three hundred pounds a-year!
(Aside.) Quick. And how does good master Fenton? Pray you, a word with you.
Shal. She's coming; to her, coz. O boy, thou hadst a father!
Slen. I had a father, mistress Anne ;-my uncle can tell you good jests of him :-Pray you, uncle, tell mistress Anne the jest, how my father stole two geese out of a pen, good uncle.
Shal. Mistress Anne, my cousin loves you.
Slen. Ay, that I do; as well as I love any woman in Gloucestershire.
Shal. He will maintain you like a gentlewoman.