Pege's house.
Enter Mrs. Page, Mrs. Quickly, and William.

Mrs. PAGE.


She at master Ford's already, think'st thou ?

Quic. Sure, he is by this ; or will be presently: but truly, he is very courageous mad about his throwing into the water. Mistress Ford desires you to come suddenly.

Mrs. Page. I'll be with her by and by; I'll but bring my young man here to school. Look, where his master comes ; ’tis a playing-day, I see.

Enter Evans,

How now, Sir Hugh? no school to-day?

Eva. No; master Slender is let the boys leave to play.

Quic. Blessing on his heart !

Mis. Page. Sir Hugh, my husband says, my son profits nothing in the world at his book; I pray you, ask him fome questions in his Accidence.

Eva. Come bither, William ;-hold up your head;

Mrs. Page. Come on, sirrah ; hold up your head. Answer your maiter, be not afraid.

Eva. William, how many numbers is in nouns ?
Will. Two.

Quic. Truly, I thought there had been one number more, because they fay, od's nouns.


? This is a very trifling scene, of no use to the plot, and I Mould think of no great delight to the audience; but Shakespeare beil knew what would please. JOHNSON.

cats, fure.

Eva. Peace your tatlings. What is fair, William?
Will. Pulcher.
Quix. Poulcats ! there are fairer things than poul-

Éva. You are a very fimplicity ’oman ; I pray you, реасс. What is Lapis, William ?

Will. A stone.
Eva. And what is a stone, William ?
Will. A pebble.

Eva. No, it is Lapis; I pray you, remember in your prain. Will. Lepis.

Eva. That is a good William : what is he, William, that does lend articles ?

Will. Articles are borrow'd of the pronoun; and be thus declin'd, fingulariter, nominativo, hic, bæc, boc.

Eva. Nominativo, big, bag, hog ; pray you, mark : genitivo, hujus : well, what is your accusative case ?

Will. Accusative, hinc.

Eva. I pray you, have your remembrance, child; accusative, burg, hang, bog.

Quic. Hang hog is Latin for bacon, I warrant you. .

Eva. Leave your prabbles, ’oman. What is the focative case, William ?

Will. O, vocativo, O.
Eva. Remember, William; focative is, caret.
Quic. And that's a good root.
Eva. 'Oman, forbear.
Mrs. Pege. Peace.
Eva. What is your genitive case plural, William?
Will. Genitive case ?
Eva. Ay.
Will. Genitive, borum, horum, horum.

Quic. 'Vengeance of Giney's cafe! fie on her! never name her, child, if she be a whore.

Eva. For shame, 'omnan.

Quic. You do ill to teach the child such words : he eaches him to hick and to hack, which they'll do fast


S 3

enough of themselves; and to call horum: fie upon

you !

[ocr errors][ocr errors][merged small]

Eva. 'Oman art thou lunacics? haft thou no understanding for thy cases, and the numbers of the genders ? thou art as foolish christian creatures, as I would desires.

Mrs. Page. Prythee, hold thy peace.

Eva. Shew me now, William, fome declensions of your pronouns.

Will. Forsooth, I have forgot.

Eva. It is, ki, , cod; if you forget your kies, your kes, and your cods, you must be preeches. Go your ways and play, go.

Mrs. Page. He is a better scholar than I thought

he was.

Eva. He is a good sprag memory. Farewell, Mrs. Page.

Mrs. Page. Adieu, good Sir Hugh. Get you home, boy. Come, we stay too long.


[blocks in formation]

Changes to Ford's house.

Enter Falstaff and Mrs. Ford. Fal. Mistress Ford, your sorrow hath eaten up my sufferance : I fee, you are obsequious in your love, and I profess requital to a hair's breadth ; not only, mistress Ford, in the simple office of love, but in all the accoutrement, complement, and ceremony of it. But are you sure of your husband now?

Mrs. Ford. He's a birding, sweet Sir John.

Mrs. Page. [Within.) What hoa, gossip Ford ! what hoa ! Mrs. Ford. Step into the chamber, Sir John.

[Exit Falstaff


Enter Mrs. Page. Mrs. Page. How now, sweetheart, who's at home besides yourself?

Mrs. Ford. Why, none but mine own people.
Mrs. Page. Indeed ?
Mrs. Ford. No, certainly —Speak louder. [Afide.

Mrs. Page. Truly, I am so glad you have nobody here.

Mrs. Ford. Why?

Mrs. Page. Why, woman, your husband is in his old lunes again : 8 he fo takes on yonder with my husband; lo rails against all married mankind; lo -curses all Eve's daughters, of what complexion foever; and so buffets himself on the forehead, crying, 9 peer-out, peer-out! that any madness I ever yet beheld, seem'd but tameness, civility, and patience, to this distemper he is in now. I am glad the fat knight is not here.

Mrs. Ford. Why, does he talk of him?

Mrs. Page. Of none but him; and swears, he was carried out, the last time he search'd for him, in a basket : protests to my husband, he is now here; and hath drawn him and the rest of their company from their sport, to make another experiment of his suspi-, cion : but I am glad the knight is not here ; now he shall see his own foolery.

Mrs. Ford. How near is he, mistress Page ?
Mrs. Page. Hard by; at street end, he will be here
Mrs. Ford, I am undone! the knight is here.

Mrs. Page. Why, then thou art utterly sham’d, and he's but a dead man. What a woman are you?

he fo takes on —] To take on, which is now used for to grieve, seems to be used by our author for to rage. Perhaps it was applied to any paffion. JOHNSON,

-feer.out,] That is, appear horns. Shakespeare is at his old lunes. JOHNSON.

S 4




Away with him, away with him ; better shame than murther.

Mrs. Ford. Which way should he go? how should I bestow him ? Shall I put him into the basket again?

Eiter Faljicf Fel. No, I'll come no more i the basket: may I not go out, ere he come?

Mrs. Page. Alas; three of master Ford's brothers watch the door with pistols, that none should issue out; otherwise you might fip away ere he came.But what make you here?

Fal. What shall I do? I’li creep up into the chimney.

Mrs. Ford. There they always ufe to discharge their birding-pieces : creep into the kiln-hole.

Fal. Where is it?

Mrs. Ford. He will seek there on my word. Neither press, coffer, chest, trunk, well, vault, but he hath an abstract for the remembrance of such places, and goes to them by his note : there is no hiding you in the house.

Fal. I'll go out then.

Mrs. Ford. If you go out in your own semblance, you die, Sir John; unless you go out disguis'd. How might we disguise him?

Mirs. Page. Alas-the-day, I know not. There is no woman's gown big enough for him; otherwise, he might put on a hat, a mumer, and a kerchief, and so escape.

Fal. Good hearts, devise something: any extremity, rather than mischief.

Mrs. Ford. My inaid's aunt, the fat woman of Brentford, has a gown above.

Alrs. Page. On my word, it will serve him ; she's as big as he is : and there's her thrum hat, and her muftier too : run up, Sir John.

Mrs. Ford. Go, go, sweet Sir John: mistress Page and I will look fome linen for

your head.


« ElőzőTovább »