Act IV - Act IV, Scene 5
SCENE 5. A room in the Garter Inn.
[Enter HOST and SIMPLE.]
What wouldst thou have, boor? What, thick-skin? Speak, breathe,
discuss; brief, short, quick, snap.
Marry, sir, I come to speak with Sir John Falstaff from Master Slender.
There's his chamber, his house, his castle, his standing-bed and
truckle-bed; 'tis painted about with the story of the Prodigal,
fresh and new. Go knock and call; he'll speak like an
Anthropophaginian unto thee; knock, I say.
There's an old woman, a fat woman, gone up into his chamber; I'll
be so bold as stay, sir, till she come down; I come to speak with
Ha! a fat woman? The knight may be robbed. I'll call. Bully knight!
Bully Sir John! Speak from thy lungs military. Art thou there? It
is thine host, thine Ephesian, calls.
[Above] How now, mine host?
Here's a Bohemian-Tartar tarries the coming down of thy fat woman.
Let her descend, bully, let her descend; my chambers are honourible.
Fie! privacy? fie!
There was, mine host, an old fat woman even now with, me; but
Pray you, sir, was't not the wise woman of Brainford?
Ay, marry was it, mussel-shell: what would you with her?
My master, sir, my Master Slender, sent to her, seeing her go
thorough the streets, to know, sir, whether one Nym, sir, that
beguiled him of a chain, had the chain or no.
I spake with the old woman about it.
And what says she, I pray, sir?
Marry, she says that the very same man that beguiled Master Slender
of his chain cozened him of it.
I would I could have spoken with the woman herself; I had other
things to have spoken with her too, from him.
What are they? Let us know.
Ay, come; quick.
I may not conceal them, sir.
Conceal them, or thou diest.
Why, sir, they were nothing but about Mistress Anne Page: to know
if it were my master's fortune to have her or no.
'Tis, 'tis his fortune.
To have her, or no. Go; say the woman told me so.
May I be bold to say so, sir?
Ay, Sir Tike; like who more bold?
I thank your worship; I shall make my master glad with these tidings.
Thou art clerkly, thou art clerkly, Sir John. Was there a wise
woman with thee?
Ay, that there was, mine host; one that hath taught me more wit
than ever I learned before in my life; and I paid nothing for it
neither, but was paid for my learning.
Out, alas, sir! cozenage, mere cozenage!
Where be my horses? Speak well of them, varletto.
Run away, with the cozeners; for so soon as I came beyond Eton,
they threw me off, from behind one of them, in a slough of mire;
and set spurs and away, like three German devils, three Doctor
They are gone but to meet the Duke, villain; do not say they be
fled; Germans are honest men.
[Enter SIR HUGH EVANS.]
Where is mine host?
What is the matter, sir?
Have a care of your entertainments: there is a friend of mine come
to town tells me there is three cozen-germans that has cozened all
the hosts of Readins, of Maidenhead, of Colebrook, of horses and
money. I tell you for good will, look you; you are wise, and full
of gibes and vlouting-stogs, and 'tis not convenient you should be
cozened. Fare you well.
[Enter DOCTOR CAIUS.]
Vere is mine host de Jarteer?
Here, Master Doctor, in perplexity and doubtful dilemma.
I cannot tell vat is dat; but it is tell-a me dat you make grand
preparation for a Duke de Jamany. By my trot, dere is no duke that
the court is know to come; I tell you for good will: Adieu.
Hue and cry, villain, go! Assist me, knight; I am undone. Fly,
run, hue and cry, villain; I am undone!
[Exeunt HOST and BARDOLPH.]
I would all the world might be cozened, for I have been cozened and
beaten too. If it should come to the ear of the court how I have
been transformed, and how my transformation hath been washed and
cudgelled, they would melt me out of my fat, drop by drop, and
liquor fishermen's boots with me; I warrant they would whip me
with their fine wits till I were as crest-fallen as a dried pear.
I never prospered since I forswore myself at primero. Well, if my
wind were but long enough to say my prayers, I would repent.
[Enter MISTRESS QUICKLY.]
Now! whence come you?
From the two parties, forsooth.
The devil take one party and his dam the other! And so they shall
be both bestowed. I have suffered more for their sakes, more than
the villainous inconstancy of man's disposition is able to bear.
And have not they suffered? Yes, I warrant; speciously one of them;
Mistress Ford, good heart, is beaten black and blue, that you
cannot see a white spot about her.
What tellest thou me of black and blue? I was beaten myself into
all the colours of the rainbow; and was like to be apprehended for
the witch of Brainford. But that my admirable dexterity of wit,
my counterfeiting the action of an old woman, delivered me, the
knave constable had set me i' the stocks, i' the common stocks,
for a witch.
Sir, let me speak with you in your chamber; you shall hear how
things go, and, I warrant, to your content. Here is a letter will
say somewhat. Good hearts, what ado here is to bring you together!
Sure, one of you does not serve heaven well, that you are so crossed.
Come up into my chamber.