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The Merry Wives of Windsor: Act 5, Scene 5

The Merry Wives of Windsor
Act 5, Scene 5

Another part of Windsor Park.

  1. Enter Falstaff with a buck’s head upon him.

Falstaff

2 - 14
  1. The Windsor bell hath struck twelve; the minute draws on.
  2. Now the hot-bloodied gods assist me! Remember, Jove, thou
  3. wast a bull for thy Europa, love set on thy horns. O
  4. powerful love, that in some respects makes a beast a man; in
  5. some other, a man a beast. You were also, Jupiter, a swan
  6. for the love of Leda. O omnipotent love, how near the god
  7. drew to the complexion of a goose! A fault done first in the
  8. form of a beast (O Jove, a beastly fault!) and then another
  9. fault in the semblance of a fowlthink on’t, Jove, a foul
  10. fault! When gods have hot backs, what shall poor men do? For
  11. me, I am here a Windsor stag, and the fattest, I think, i’
  12. th’ forest. Send me a cool rut-time, Jove, or who can blame
  13. me to piss my tallow? Who comes here? My doe?
  1. Enter Mistress Page, Mistress Ford.

Mistress Ford

16
  1. Sir John? Art thou there, my deer? My male deer?

Falstaff

17 - 20
  1. My doe with the black scut? Let the sky rain potatoes; let
  2. it thunder to the tune of Green-sleeves,” hail
  3. kissing-comfits, and snow eringoes; let there come a tempest
  4. of provocation, I will shelter me here.
  1. Embracing her.

Mistress Ford

22
  1. Mistress Page is come with me, sweet heart.

Falstaff

23 - 28
  1. Divide me like a brib’d-buck, each a haunch. I will keep my
  2. sides to myself, my shoulders for the fellow of this
  3. walkand my horns I bequeath your husbands. Am I a woodman,
  4. ha? Speak I like Herne the hunter? Why, now is Cupid a child
  5. of conscience, he makes restitution. As I am a true spirit,
  6. welcome!
  1. There is a noise of horns.

Mistress Page

30
  1. Alas, what noise?

Mistress Ford

31
  1. Heaven forgive our sins!

Falstaff

32
  1. What should this be?

Both Mistress Ford and Mistress Page

33
  1. Away, away!
  1. The two women run away.

Falstaff

35 - 37
  1. I think the devil will not have me damn’d, lest the oil
  2. that’s in me should set hell on fire; he would never else
  3. cross me thus.
  1. Enter Evans like a satyr, Anne Page and Boys dressed like
  2. fairies, Pistol as Hobgoblin, Mistress Quickly like the
  3. Queen of Fairies.
  1. They sing a song about him and afterward speak.

Mistress Quickly

42 - 46
  1. Fairies, black, grey, green, and white,
  2. You moonshine revelers, and shades of night,
  3. You orphan heirs of fixed destiny,
  4. Attend your office and your quality.
  5. Crier Hobgoblin, make the fairy Oyes.

Pistol

47 - 51
  1. Elves, list your names; silence, you aery toys!
  2. Cricket, to Windsor chimneys shalt thou leap;
  3. Where fires thou find’st unrak’d and hearths unswept,
  4. There pinch the maids as blue as bilberry;
  5. Our radiant Queen hates sluts and sluttery.

Falstaff

52 - 53
  1. They are fairies, he that speaks to them shall die.
  2. I’ll wink and couch; no man their works must eye.
  1. Lies down upon his face.

Evans

55 - 60
  1. Where’s Bede? Go you, and where you find a maid
  2. That ere she sleep has thrice her prayers said,
  3. Raise up the organs of her fantasy,
  4. Sleep she as sound as careless infancy;
  5. But those as sleep and think not on their sins,
  6. Pinch them, arms, legs, backs, shoulders, sides, and shins.

Mistress Quickly

61 - 82
  1. About, about;
  2. Search Windsor Castle, elves, within and out.
  3. Strew good luck, ouphes, on every sacred room,
  4. That it may stand till the perpetual doom
  5. In state as wholesome as in state ’tis fit,
  6. Worthy the owner, and the owner it.
  7. The several chairs of order look you scour
  8. With juice of balm and every precious flow’r;
  9. Each fair installment, coat, and sev’ral crest,
  10. With loyal blazon, evermore be blest!
  11. And nightly, meadow-fairies, look you sing,
  12. Like to the Garter’s compass, in a ring.
  13. Th’ expressure that it bears, green let it be,
  14. More fertile-fresh than all the field to see;
  15. And Honi soit qui mal y pense write
  16. In em’rald tuffs, flow’rs purple, blue, and white,
  17. Like sapphire, pearl, and rich embroidery,
  18. Buckled below fair knighthood’s bending knee:
  19. Fairies use flow’rs for their charactery.
  20. Away, disperse! But till ’tis one a’ clock,
  21. Our dance of custom, round about the oak
  22. Of Herne the hunter, let us not forget.

Evans

83 - 86
  1. Pray you lock hand in hand; yourselves in order set;
  2. And twenty glow-worms shall our lanterns be,
  3. To guide our measure round about the tree.
  4. But stay, I smell a man of middle-earth.

Falstaff

87
  1. Heavens defend me from that Welsh fairy, lest he transform me to a piece of cheese!

Pistol

88
  1. Vild worm, thou wast o’erlook’d even in thy birth.

Mistress Quickly

89 - 92
  1. With trial-fire touch me his finger-end.
  2. If he be chaste, the flame will back descend
  3. And turn him to no pain; but if he start,
  4. It is the flesh of a corrupted heart.

Pistol

93
  1. A trial, come.

Evans

94
  1. Come, will this wood take fire?
  1. They put the tapers to his fingers, and he starts.

Falstaff

96
  1. O, O, O!

Mistress Quickly

97 - 110
  1. Corrupt, corrupt, and tainted in desire!
  2. About him, fairies, sing a scornful rhyme,
  3. And as you trip, still pinch him to your time.
  4. The Song
  5. Fie on sinful fantasy!
  6. Fie on lust and luxury!
  7. Lust is but a bloody fire,
  8. Kindled with unchaste desire,
  9. Fed in heart, whose flames aspire,
  10. As thoughts do blow them, higher and higher.
  11. Pinch him, fairies, mutually!
  12. Pinch him for his villainy!
  13. Pinch him, and burn him, and turn him about,
  14. Till candles, and starlight, and moonshine be out.
  1. Here they pinch him and sing about him. And the Doctor Caius
  2. comes one way, and steals away a boy in green; and Slender
  3. another way; he takes a boy in white; and Fenton steals
  4. Mistress Anne Page. And a noise of hunting is made within;
  5. and all the fairies run away. Falstaff pulls off his buck’s
  6. head, and rises up.
  1. Enter Page, Ford, Mistress Page, and Mistress Ford.

George

118 - 119
  1. Nay, do not fly, I think we have watch’d you now.
  2. Will none but Herne the hunter serve your turn?

Mistress Page

120 - 123
  1. I pray you come, hold up the jest no higher.
  2. Now, good Sir John, how like you Windsor wives?
  3. See you these, husband? Do not these fair yokes
  4. Become the forest better than the town?

Ford

124 - 129
  1. Now, sir, who’s a cuckold now? Master Brook, Falstaff’s a
  2. knave, a cuckoldly knave; here are his horns, Master Brook;
  3. and, Master Brook, he hath enjoy’d nothing of Ford’s but his
  4. buck-basket his cudgel, and twenty pounds of money, which
  5. must be paid to Master Brook. His horses are arrested for
  6. it, Master Brook.

Mistress Ford

130 - 132
  1. Sir John, we have had ill luck; we could never meet. I will
  2. never take you for my love again, but I will always count
  3. you my deer.

Falstaff

133
  1. I do begin to perceive that I am made an ass.

Ford

134
  1. Ay, and an ox too; both the proofs are extant.

Falstaff

135 - 141
  1. And these are not fairies? I was three or four times in the
  2. thought they were not fairies, and yet the guiltiness of my
  3. mind, the sudden surprise of my powers, drove the grossness
  4. of the foppery into a receiv’d belief, in despite of the
  5. teeth of all rhyme and reason, that they were fairies. See
  6. now how wit may be made a Jack-a-Lent, when ’tis upon ill
  7. employment!

Evans

142 - 143
  1. Sir John Falstaff, serve Got, and leave your desires, and
  2. fairies will not pinse you.

Ford

144
  1. Well said, fairy Hugh.

Evans

145
  1. And leave you your jealousies too, I pray you.

Ford

146 - 147
  1. I will never mistrust my wife again, till thou art able to
  2. woo her in good English.

Falstaff

148 - 151
  1. Have I laid my brain in the sun and dried it, that it wants
  2. matter to prevent so gross o’erreaching as this? Am I ridden
  3. with a Welsh goat too? Shall I have a coxcomb of frieze?
  4. ’Tis time I were chok’d with a piece of toasted cheese.

Evans

152
  1. Seese is not good to give putter; your belly is all putter.

Falstaff

153 - 155
  1. Seese and putter”! Have I liv’d to stand at the taunt of
  2. one that makes fritters of English? This is enough to be the
  3. decay of lust and late-walking through the realm.

Mistress Page

156 - 159
  1. Why, Sir John, do you think, though we would have thrust
  2. virtue out of our hearts by the head and shoulders, and have
  3. given ourselves without scruple to hell, that ever the devil
  4. could have made you our delight?

Ford

160
  1. What, a hodge-pudding? A bag of flax?

Mistress Page

161
  1. A puff’d man?

George

162
  1. Old, cold, wither’d, and of intolerable entrails?

Ford

163
  1. And one that is as slanderous as Satan?

George

164
  1. And as poor as Job?

Ford

165
  1. And as wicked as his wife?

Evans

166 - 168
  1. And given to fornications, and to taverns, and sack, and
  2. wine, and metheglins, and to drinkings and swearings and
  3. starings, pribbles and prabbles?

Falstaff

169 - 171
  1. Well, I am your theme. You have the start of me, I am
  2. dejected. I am not able to answer the Welsh flannel;
  3. ignorance itself is a plummet o’er me. Use me as you will.

Ford

172 - 175
  1. Marry, sir, we’ll bring you to Windsor, to one Master Brook
  2. that you have cozen’d of money, to whom you should have been
  3. a pander. Over and above that you have suffer’d, I think to
  4. repay that money will be a biting affliction.

George

176 - 179
  1. Yet be cheerful, knight. Thou shalt eat a posset tonight at
  2. my house, where I will desire thee to laugh at my wife, that
  3. now laughs at thee. Tell her Master Slender hath married her
  4. daughter.

Mistress Page

180 - 182
  1. Aside.
  2. Doctors doubt that. If Anne Page be my daughter, she is, by
  3. this, Doctor Caius’ wife.
  1. Enter Slender.

Slender

184
  1. Whoa ho, ho! Father Page!

George

185
  1. Son? How now? How now, son? Have you dispatch’d?

Slender

186 - 187
  1. Dispatch’d? I’ll make the best in Gloucestershire know on’t.
  2. Would I were hang’d la, else!

George

188
  1. Of what, son?

Slender

189 - 193
  1. I came yonder at Eton to marry Mistress Anne Page, and she’s
  2. a great lubberly boy. If it had not been i’ th’ church, I
  3. would have swing’d him, or he should have swing’d me. If I
  4. did not think it had been Anne Page, would I might never
  5. stir!—and ’tis a postmaster’s boy.

George

194
  1. Upon my life then, you took the wrong.

Slender

195 - 197
  1. When need you tell me that? I think so, when I took a boy
  2. for a girl. If I had been married to him (for all he was in
  3. woman’s apparel) I would not have had him.

George

198 - 199
  1. Why, this is your own folly. Did not I tell you how you
  2. should know my daughter by her garments?

Slender

200 - 202
  1. I went to her in white and cried mum,” and she cried
  2. budget,” as Anne and I had appointed, and yet it was not
  3. Anne, but a postmaster’s boy.

Mistress Page

203 - 205
  1. Good George, be not angry. I knew of your purpose; turn’d my
  2. daughter into green; and indeed she is now with the Doctor
  3. at the dean’ry, and there married.
  1. Enter Caius.

Caius

207 - 209
  1. Vere is Mistress Page? By gar, I am cozen’d. I ha’ married
  2. oon garsoon, a boy; oon pesant, by gar. A boy! It is not
  3. Anne Page. By gar, I am cozen’d.

Mistress Page

210
  1. Why? Did you take her in green?

Caius

211
  1. Ay, be-gar, and ’tis a boy. Be-gar, I’ll raise all Windsor.
  1. Exit.

Ford

213
  1. This is strange. Who hath got the right Anne?

George

214 - 216
  1. My heart misgives me. Here comes Master Fenton.
  2. Enter Fenton and Anne Page.
  3. How now, Master Fenton?

Anne

217
  1. Pardon, good father! Good my mother, pardon!

George

218
  1. Now, mistress, how chance you went not with Master Slender?

Mistress Page

219
  1. Why went you not with Master Doctor, maid?

Fenton

220 - 230
  1. You do amaze her. Hear the truth of it.
  2. You would have married her most shamefully,
  3. Where there was no proportion held in love.
  4. The truth is, she and I (long since contracted)
  5. Are now so sure that nothing can dissolve us.
  6. Th’ offense is holy that she hath committed,
  7. And this deceit loses the name of craft,
  8. Of disobedience, or unduteous title,
  9. Since therein she doth evitate and shun
  10. A thousand irreligious cursed hours
  11. Which forced marriage would have brought upon her.

Ford

231 - 233
  1. Stand not amaz’d; here is no remedy.
  2. In love, the heavens themselves do guide the state;
  3. Money buys lands, and wives are sold by fate.

Falstaff

234
  1. I am glad, though you have ta’en a special stand to strike at me, that your arrow hath glanc’d.

George

235 - 236
  1. Well, what remedy? Fenton, heaven give thee joy!
  2. What cannot be eschew’d must be embrac’d.

Falstaff

237
  1. When night-dogs run, all sorts of deer are chas’d.

Mistress Page

238 - 242
  1. Well, I will muse no further. Master Fenton,
  2. Heaven give you many, many merry days!
  3. Good husband, let us every one go home,
  4. And laugh this sport o’er by a country fire
  5. Sir John and all.

Ford

243 - 245
  1.                   Let it be so. Sir John,
  2. To Master Brook you yet shall hold your word,
  3. For he tonight shall lie with Mistress Ford.
  1. Exeunt.
finis
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