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Prince. Faith it does me, though it discolors the complexion of my greatnes to acknowledge it : doth it not thew vildly in me, to desire small beere ?
Poynes. Why a prince should not be so loosely studied, as to remember so weake a composition.
Prince. Belike then my appetite was not princely gote, for by my troth, I do now remember the poor creature smal beere. But indeed these humble confiderations make me out of loue with my greatnesse. What a disgrace is it to mee to remember thy name? or to know thy face to morow? or to take note how many paire of silke stockings thou hast with these, and those that were thy peach colourd once, or to beare the inuentorie of thy shirts, as one for superfluitie, and another for vse. But that the tennis court keeper knows better than I, for it is a low eb of linnen with thee when thou keepest not racket there, as thou hast not done a great while, because the rest of the low countries haue eate vp thy holland : and God knows whether those that bal out the ruines of thy linnen shal inherite his kingdom : but the midwiues say, the children are not in the fault wherevpon the world increases, and kinreds are mightily strengthened.
Poynes. How ill it followes, after you haue labored so hard, you should talke so ydely! tell me how many good yong princes woulde doe so, their fathers being so sicke, as yours at this time is.
Prince. Shall I tel thee one thing Poynes ?
Prince. It shall serue among wittes of no higher breeding then thine.
Poynes. Go to, I stand the push of your one thing that
you will tell.
Prince. Mary I tell thee it is not meete that I should bee fad now my father is sicke, albeit I could tell to thee, as to
one it pleases me for a fault of a better to call my friend, I could be fad, and fad indeede too.
Poynes. Very hardly, vpon such a subiect.
Prince. By this hand, thou thinkest me as farre in the di. uels booke, as thou and Falstaffe, for obduracie and persistancie, let the end trie the man, but I tel thee, my heart bleeds inwardly that my father is so fick, and keeping such vile company as thou arte, hath in reason taken from me all oftentation of forrowe.
Poynes. The reason.
Prince. It would bee euery mans thought, and thou arte a blessed fellow, to thinke as euery man thinkes, neuer a mans thought in the world, keepes the rode way better then thine, euerie man would thinke me an hypocrite indeede, and what accites your most worshipfull thought to thinke so?
Poynes. Why because you haue been so lewd and so much engraffed to Falstaffe.
Prince. And to thee.
Poynes. By this light I am well spoke on, I can heare it with mine owne eares, the worst that they can say of me is that I am a second brother, and that I am a proper fellow of my hands, and those two things I confesse I cannot helpe: by the masse here comes Bardolfe.
Enter Bardolfe and boy. Prince. And the boy that I gaue Falstaffe, a had him from me christian, and looke if the fat villaine haue not transformd
Bard. God faue your grace.
Prince. And yours 'moft noble Bardolfe.
Pornes. Come you vertuous alle, you bashfull foole, muft vou be blushing, wherefore blush you now? what a maidenly
man at armes are you become? ist such a matter to get a pottlepots maidenhead ?
Boy. A calls me enow my lord through a red lattice, and I could difcerne no part of his face from the window, at last I spied his eies, and me thought he had made two holes in the ale wiues peticote and so peept through.
Prince. Has not the boy profited ?
Boy. Mary my lord, Althear dreampt she was delivered of a firebrand, and therefore I call him her dreame.
Prince. A crownes worth of good interpretation there tis boy.
Poines. O that this blossome could be kept from cankers ! well, there is fixpence to preserue thee.
Bard. And you do not make him hangd among you, the gallowes shall haue wrong.
Prince. And how doth thy master Bardolfe?
Bard. Well my lord, he heard of your graces comming to towne, theres a letter for you.
Poynes. Deliuerd with good respect, and how doth the Martlemasse your master ?
Bard. In bodily health fir.
Poynes. Mary the immortall part needes a phistian, but that moues not him, though that be sicke, it dies not.
Prince. I do allow this wen to be as familiar with me, as my dogge, and he holds his place, for looke you how he writes.
Poynes. Iohn Falstaffe knight, euery man must know that as oft as he has occasion to name himselfe : euen like those that are kin to the king for they neuer pricke their finger, but they saye, theres some of the kings bloud spilt : how comes that
(saies he) that takes vppon him not to conceiue the answer is as ready as a borowed cap: I am the kings poore cosin, sir.
Prince. Nay they will be kin to vs, or they will fetch it from Iaphet, but the letter, fir lohn Falstaffe knight, to the fonne of the king, nearest his father, Harry prince of Wales, greeting.
Poynes. Why this is a certificate.
Poynes. He sure meanes breuity in breath, short winded,
Thine by yea, and no, which is as much as to say, as
thou vseft him, lacke Falstaffe with my family, lohn with my brothers and sisters, and fir Iohn with all
Europe. Poynes. My lord, Ile steep this letter in facke and make him eate it.
Prince. Thats to make him eate twenty of his words, but do you
vse me, thus Ned? must I marrie your sister ? Poynes. God send the wench no worse fortune, but I neuer said fo.
Prince. Wel, thus we play the fooles with the time, and the spirits of the wise fit in the clowdes and mocke vs, is your master here in London?
Bard. Yea my lord.
Prince. Where sups he? doth the old boare feede in the old franke?
Bard. At the old place, my lord, in Eastcheape.
Boy. None my lord, but old mistris Quickly, and mistris Dol Tere-beet.
Prince. What Pagan may that be?
Boy. A proper gentlewoman fir, and a kinswoman of my masters.
Prince. Euen such kinne as the parish heicfors are to the towne bull, Mall we steale vpon them Ned at supper?
Poynes. I am your shadow my lord, Ile follow you.
Prince. Sirra, you boy and Bardolfe, no worde to your mafter that I am yet come to towne; theres for your silence.
Bar. I haue no tongue sir.
Prince. Fare you well : go, this Doil Tere Sheete should be fome rode.
Poyns. I warrant you, as common as the way between S. Albons and London.
Prince. How might we see Falstaffe bestow himself to night in his true colours, and not our selues be seene ?
Poynes. Put on two letherne ierkins and aprons, and waite vpon him at his table as drawers.
Prince. From a god to a bul, a heauy descension, it was loues case, from a prince to a prentise, a low transformation, that Mal be mine, for in euery thing the purpose must weigh with the folly, follow me Ned.
Enter Northumberland his wife, and the wife to Harry Percie,
North. I pray thee louing wife and gentle daughter,
Wife. I haue giuen ouer, I will speake no more,
North. Alas sweete wife, my honour is at pawne, And but my going, nothing can redeeme it.