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I met, and overtook, a dozen captains,
(Exeunt the Prince, Poins, and Gower. Fal. Now comes in the sweetest morsel of the night, and we must hence, and leave it unpicked.
(More knocking at the door without. More knocking at the door ?-How now? what's the matter?
Enter BARDOLPH. Bard. You must away to court, sir, presently; a dozen captains stay at door for you.
(Exit BARDOLPH. Fal. Farewell, Hostess ;-farewelī, Doll.You see, my good wenches, how men of merit are sought after : the undeserver may sleep, when the man of action is called on.
Farewell, good wenches :-If I be not sent away post, I will see you again ere I go.
Dol. I cannot speak :— If my heart be not ready to burst,-Well, sweet Jack, have a care of thysel:
Fal. Farewell, farewell. [Exit FALSTAFI
ACT THE THIRD,
Justice SHALLOW's Seat in Glostershire.
Enter SHALLOW, meeting SILENCE. Shal. Come on, come on, come on; give me your hand, sir, give me your hand, sir: an early stirrer, by the rood! And how doth my good cousin Silence?
Sil. Good morrow, good cousin Shallow.
Shal. And how doth my cousin, your bedfellow? and your fairest daughter, and mine, my god-daughter Ellen ?
Sil. Alas, a black ouzel, cousin Shallow.
Shal. By yea and nay, sir, I dare say, my cousin William is become a good scholar: he is at Oxford still, is he not?
Sil. Indeed, sir; to my cost.
Shal. He must then to the inps of court shortly: I was once of Clement’s Inn; where, I think, they will talk of mad Shallow yet.
Sil. You were called-lusty Shallow, then, cousin.
Shal. By the mass, I was called any thing; and I would have done any thing, indeed, and roundly too. There was I, and little John Doit of Staffordshire, and Black George Bare, and Francis Pickbone, and Will Squele a Cotswold man,—you had not four such swinge-bucklers in all the inns of court again : and I may say to you, we knew where the bona-robas were; and had the best of them all at commandment,
Then was Jack Falstaff, now Sir John, a boy; and page to Thomas Mowbray, Duke of Norfolk.
Sil. This Sir John, cousin, that comes hither anon about soldiers ? Shal. The same Sir John; the
very same. him break Skogan's head at the court gate, when he was a crack, not thus high; and the very same day I did fight with one Sampson Stockfish, a fruiterer, hehind Gray's Inn, O, the mad days that I have spent ! and to see how many
my old acquaintance are dead !
Sil. We shall all follow, cousin.
Shal. Certain, 'tis certain; very sure : very sure : death, as the Psalmist saith, is certain to all ; all shall die. How a good yoke of bullocks, at Stamford fair?
Sil. Truly, cousin, I was not there.
Shal. Death is certain.--Is old Double of your town living yet?
Sil, Dead, sir.
Shal. Dead !--See, see!-he drew a good bow ;And dead !-he shot a fine shoot :-John of Gaunt Joy'd him well, and betted much money on his head, Dead!-he would have clapp'd i' the clout at twelve score : and carried you a forehand shaft a fourteen, and fourteen and a half, that it would have done a man's heart good to see.—How a score of ewes now?
Sil. Thereafter as they be: a score of good ewes may
be worth ten pounds,
Sil. Here come two of Sir John Falstaff's men, as I think.
Enter Davy, BARDOLPH and PAGE. Bard. Good morrow, honest gentlemen : I beseech you, which is Justice Shallow ?
Shal. I am Robert Shallow, sir; a poor esquire of this county, and one of the king's justices of the peace: what is your good pleasure with me?
Bard. My captain, sir, commends him to you; my captain, Sir John Falstaff: a tall gentleman, and a most gallant leader,
Shal. He greets me well, sir; I knew him a good back-sword man: how doth the good knight? may I ask, how my lady his wife doth?
Bard. Sir, pardon; a soldier is better accommodated, than with a wife.
Shal. It is well said, i' faith, sir; and it is well said indeed too. Better accommodated —it is good; yea, indeed, is it: good phrases are surely, and ever were, very
commendable. Accommodated !--it comes of accommodo: very good; a good phrase.
Bard. Pardon, sir; I have heard the word. Phrase, call you it! By this day, I know not the phrase: but I will maintain the word with my sword, to be a soldier-like word, and a word of exceeding good command. Accommodated,—that is, when a man is, as they say, accommodated; or when a man is,-being --whereby,--he may be thought to be accommodated; which is an excellent thing.
Shal. It is very just:--Look, here comes good Sir John.
Give me your good hand, give me your worship's good hand : by my troth, you look well, and bear your years very well: welcome, good Sir John.
Fal. I am glad to see you well, good master Robert Shallow ;-master Sure-card, as I think.
Shal. No, Sir John; it is my cousin Silence, in commission with me. Fal. Good master Silence, it well befits
be of the peace.
Sil. Your goud worship is welcome.
Fal. Fie! this is hot weather.—Gentlemen, have you provided me here half a dozen sufficient men ?
Shal. Marry, have we,
you sit? Fal. Let me see them, I beseech you. [They sit.
Shal. Where's the roll? where's the roll? where's the roll-Let me see, let me see, let me see. so, so: Yea, marry, sir:-Ralph Mouldy !- let them appear as I call;-[Exit Davy.] let them do so, let them do so.
.-Let me see ;-Where is Mouldy? Enter MouldY, SHADOW, Wart, FEEBLE, and
BULLCALF, as they are called.
Fal. Is thy name Mouldy?
Shal. Ha ! ha! ha! most excellent, i'faith! things that are mouldy, lack use : very singular good! Well, said, Sir John; very well said,
Fal. Prick him.
for one to do her husbandry, and her drudgery: you need not to have pricked me; there are other men fitter to go out than I.
Shal. Peace, fellow, peace; stand aside; know you where you are !--For the other, Sir John :- let me see ;-Simon Shadow!
Fal. Ay marry, let me have him to sit under : he's like to be a cold soldier.
Shal. Where's Shadow !
Fal. Thy mother's son ! like enough; and thy father's shadow : so the son of the female is the shadow of the male: it is often so, indeed ; but not much of the father's substance.
Shal. Do you like him, Sir John?