ACT IV
Scene 5
 

The Garter Inn

Enter HOST and SIMPLE

HOST
What wouldst thou have, boor? What, thick-skin?
Speak, breathe, discuss; brief, short, quick, snap.

SIMPLE
Marry, sir, I come to speak with Sir John Falstaff
from Master Slender.

HOST
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.

SIMPLE
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 her, indeed.

HOST
Ha! a fat woman? The knight may be robb'd. I'll call.
Bully knight! Bully Sir John! Speak from thy lungs
military. Art thou there? It is thine host, thine Ephesian, calls.

FALSTAFF
[Above] How now, mine host?

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!

Enter FALSTAFF

FALSTAFF
There was, mine host, an old fat woman even
now with, me; but she's gone.

SIMPLE
Pray you, sir, was't not the wise woman of
Brainford?

FALSTAFF
Ay, marry was it, mussel-shell. What would you
with her?

SIMPLE
My master, sir, my Master Slender, sent to her,
seeing her go thorough the streets, to know, sir, whether one
Nym, sir, that beguil'd him of a chain, had the chain or no.

FALSTAFF
I spake with the old woman about it.

SIMPLE
And what says she, I pray, sir?

FALSTAFF
Marry, she says that the very same man that
beguil'd Master Slender of his chain cozen'd him of it.

SIMPLE
I would I could have spoken with the woman
herself; I had other things to have spoken with her too,
from him.

FALSTAFF
What are they? Let us know.

HOST
Ay, come; quick.

SIMPLE
I may not conceal them, sir.

FALSTAFF
Conceal them, or thou diest.

SIMPLE
Why, sir, they were nothing but about Mistress
Anne Page: to know if it were my master's fortune to
have her or no.

FALSTAFF
'Tis, 'tis his fortune.

SIMPLE
What sir?

FALSTAFF
To have her, or no. Go; say the woman told me
so.

SIMPLE
May I be bold to say so, sir?

FALSTAFF
Ay, sir, like who more bold?

SIMPLE.,

I thank your worship; I shall make my master glad
with these tidings.

Exit SIMPLE

HOST
Thou art clerkly, thou art clerkly, Sir John. Was
there a wise woman with thee?

FALSTAFF
Ay, that there was, mine host; one that hath
taught me more wit than ever I learn'd before in my life;
and I paid nothing for it neither, but was paid for my
learning.

Enter BARDOLPH

BARDOLPH
Out, alas, sir, cozenage, mere cozenage!

HOST
Where be my horses? Speak well of them, varletto.

BARDOLPH
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 Faustuses.

HOST
They are gone but to meet the Duke, villain; do not
say they be fled. Germans are honest men.

Enter SIR HUGH EVANS

EVANS
Where is mine host?

HOST
What is the matter, sir?

EVANS
Have a care of your entertainments. There is a friend
of mine come to town tells me there is three
cozen-germans that has cozen'd 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.

Exit

Enter DOCTOR CAIUS

CAIUS
Vere is mine host de Jarteer?

HOST
Here, Master Doctor, in perplexity and doubtful
dilemma.

CAIUS
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.

Exit

HOST
Hue and cry, villain, go! Assist me, knight; I am
undone. Fly, run, hue and cry, villain; I am undone.

Exeunt HOST and BARDOLPH

FALSTAFF
I would all the world might be cozen'd, for I have
been cozen'd and beaten too. If it should come to the ear
of the court how I have been transformed, and how my
transformation hath been wash'd and cudgell'd, 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 crestfall'n as a dried pear.
I never prosper'd since I forswore myself at primero. Well,
if my wind were but long enough to say my prayers,
would repent.

Enter MISTRESS QUICKLY

Now! whence come you?

QUICKLY
From the two parties, forsooth.

FALSTAFF
The devil take one party and his dam the other!
And so they shall be both bestowed. I have suffer'd more
for their sakes, more than the villainous inconstancy of
man's disposition is able to bear.

QUICKLY
And have not they suffer'd? 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.

FALSTAFF
What tell'st 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, deliver'd me, the knave constable
had set me i' th' stocks, i' th' common stocks, for a witch.

QUICKLY
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 cross'd.

FALSTAFF
Come up into my chamber.

Exeunt