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ACT III SCENE 4. 


Before PAGE'S house

Enter FENTON and ANNE PAGE

 FENTON.

I see I cannot get thy father's love;
Therefore no more turn me to him, sweet Nan.

 ANNE.

Alas, how then?

 FENTON.

Why, thou must be thyself.
He doth object I am too great of birth;
And that, my state being gall'd with my expense,
I seek to heal it only by his wealth.
Besides these, other bars he lays before me,
My riots past, my wild societies;
And tells me 'tis a thing impossible
I should love thee but as a property.

 ANNE..

May be he tells you true.

 FENTON.

No, heaven so speed me in my time to come!
Albeit I will confess thy father's wealth
Was the first motive that I woo'd thee, Anne;
Yet, wooing thee, I found thee of more value
Than stamps in gold, or sums in sealed bags;
And 'tis the very riches of thyself
That now I aim at.

 ANNE.

Gentle Master Fenton,
Yet seek my father's love; still seek it, sir.
If opportunity and humblest suit
Cannot attain it, why then-hark you hither.

[They converse apart]

Enter SHALLOW, SLENDER, and MISTRESS QUICKLY

 SHALLOW.

Break their talk, Mistress Quickly; my kinsman
shall speak for himself.

 SLENDER.

I'll make a shaft or a bolt on 't; 'slid, 'tis but
venturing.

 SHALLOW.

Be not dismay'd.

 SLENDER.

No, she shall not dismay me. I care not for that,
but that I am afeard.

 QUICKLY.

Hark ye, Master Slender would speak a word
with you.

 ANNE.

I come to him. [Aside] This is my father's choice.
O, what a world of vile ill-favour'd faults
Looks handsome in three hundred pounds a year!

 QUICKLY.

And how does good Master Fenton? Pray you, a
word with you.

 SHALLOW.

She's coming; to her, coz. O boy, thou hadst a
father!

 SLENDER.

I had a father, Mistress Anne; my uncle can tell
you good jests of him. Pray you, uncle, tell Mistress Anne
the jest how my father stole two geese out of a pen, good
uncle.

 SHALLOW.

Mistress Anne, my cousin loves you.

 SLENDER.

Ay, that I do; as well as I love any woman in
Gloucestershire.

 SHALLOW.

He will maintain you like a gentlewoman.

 SLENDER.

Ay, that I will come cut and longtail, under the
degree of a squire.

 SHALLOW.

He will make you a hundred and fifty pounds
jointure.

 ANNE.

Good Master Shallow, let him woo for himself.

 SHALLOW.

Marry, I thank you for it; I thank you for that
good comfort. She calls you, coz; I'll leave you.

 ANNE.

Now, Master Slender-

 SLENDER.

Now, good Mistress Anne-

 ANNE.

What is your will?

 SLENDER.

My Will! 'Od's heartlings, that's a pretty jest
indeed! I ne'er made my will yet, I thank heaven; I am not
such a sickly creature, I give heaven praise.

 ANNE.

I mean, Master Slender, what would you with me?

 SLENDER.

Truly, for mine own part I would little or nothing
with you. Your father and my uncle hath made motions;
if it be my luck, so; if not, happy man be his dole! They
can tell you how things go better than I can. You may ask
your father; here he comes.

Enter PAGE and MISTRESS PAGE

 PAGE.

Now, Master Slender! Love him, daughter Anne-
Why, how now, what does Master Fenton here?
You wrong me, sir, thus still to haunt my house.
I told you, sir, my daughter is dispos'd of.

 FENTON.

Nay, Master Page, be not impatient.

 MRS.PAGE.

Good Master Fenton, come not to my child.

 PAGE.

She is no match for you.

 FENTON.

Sir, will you hear me?

 PAGE.

No, good Master Fenton.
Come, Master Shallow; come, son Slender; in.
Knowing my mind, you wrong me, Master Fenton.

Exeunt PAGE, SHALLOW, and SLENDER

 QUICKLY.

Speak to Mistress Page.

 FENTON.

Good Mistress Page, for that I love your daughter
In such a righteous fashion as I do,
Perforce, against all checks, rebukes, and manners,
I must advance the colours of my love,
And not retire. Let me have your good will.

 ANNE.

Good mother, do not marry me to yond fool.

 MRS.PAGE.

I mean it not; I seek you a better husband.

 QUICKLY.

That's my master, Master Doctor.

 ANNE.

Alas, I had rather be set quick i' th' earth.
And bowl'd to death with turnips.

 MRS.PAGE.

Come, trouble not yourself. Good Master
Fenton,
I will not be your friend, nor enemy;
My daughter will I question how she loves you,
And as I find her, so am I affected;
Till then, farewell, sir; she must needs go in;
Her father will be angry.

 FENTON.

Farewell, gentle mistress; farewell, Nan.

Exeunt MRS. PAGE and ANNE

 QUICKLY.

This is my doing now: 'Nay,' said I 'will you cast
away your child on a fool, and a physician? Look on
Master Fenton.' This is my doing.

 FENTON.

I thank thee; and I pray thee, once to-night
Give my sweet Nan this ring. There's for thy pains.

 QUICKLY.

Now Heaven send thee good fortune! [Exit
FENTON] A kind heart he hath; a woman would run through
fire and water for such a kind heart. But yet I would my
master had Mistress Anne; or I would Master Slender had
her; or, in sooth, I would Master Fenton had her; I will
do what I can for them all three, for so I have promis'd,
and I'll be as good as my word; but speciously for Master
Fenton. Well, I must of another errand to Sir John Falstaff
from my two mistresses. What a beast am I to slack it!

Exit

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