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SCENE I. Before an ale house on a heath.
Enter Hostess and SLY.
Sly. Ye are a baggage: the Slys are no rogues ; look in the chronicles ; we came in with Richard Conqueror. Therefore paucus pallabris ; let the world slide : sessa !
Host. You will not pay for the glasses you have burst?
Sly. No, not a denier. Go by, Jeronimy: go to thy cold bed, and warm thee.
10 Host. I know my remedy; I must go fetch the thirdborough.
(Erit. Sly. Third, or fourth, or fifth borough, I'll answer him by law : I'll not budge an inch, boy : let him come, and kindly.
[Falls asleep Horns vinded. Enter a Lord from hunting, with his train. Lord. Huntsman, I charge thee, tender well my hounds:
( 588 )
+ Trash Merriman, the poor cur is emboss'd ;
20 I would not lose the dog for twenty pound.
First llun. Why, Belman is as good as he, my lord ;
Lord. Thou art a fool : if Echo were as fleet,
30 Lord. What's here? one dead, or drunk? See, doth he
breathe? Sec. Hun. He breathes, my lord. Were he not warm’d
Lord. monstrous beast ! how like a swine he lies !
First Hun. Believe me, lord, I think he cannot choose.
"Will't please your lordship cool your hands? Some one be ready with a costly suit And ask him what apparel he will wear ;
Another tell him of his liounds and horse,
And when he says he is-say that he dreams,
First Hun. My lord, I warrant yon we will play our part, As he shall think by onr true diligence
70 He is no less than what we say he is.
Lord. Take him up gently and to bed with him; And each one to his office when he wakes.
[Some dear out Sly. A trumpet sounds. Sirrah, go see what trumpet 'tis that sounds :
[Erit Serringman. Belike, some noble gentleman that means, Travelling some journey, to repose him here.
An't please your honour, players
Now, fellows, you are welcome. * Players. We thank your hononr,
80 Lord. Do you intend to stay with me to-night? A Player. So please your lordsl:ip to accept our duty.
Lord. With all my heart. This fellow I remember,
A Player. I think 'twas Soto that your honour means.
Lord. "Tis very true : tliou didst it excellent. Well, you are come to me in happy time;
90 The rather for I have some sport in hand Wherein your cunning can assist me much. There is a lord will lear you play to-night : But I am doubtful of your modesties ; Lest over-eyeing of his odd behaviour,For yet his honour never heard a playYou break into some merry passion And so offend him ; for I tell you, sirs, If you should smile he grows impatient.
A Player. Fear not, my lord : we can contain ourselves, Were he the veriest antic in the world.
101 Lord. Go, sirrah, take them to the buttery, And give them friendly welcome every one : Let them want nothing that my house affords.
[Erit one with the Players. Sirrah, go you to Barthol'mew my page, And see him dress'd in all suits like a lady: That done, conduct him to the drunkard's chamber; And call him “madam," do lim obeisance. Tell him from me, as he will win my love, He bear himself with honourable action,
“What is't your honour will command,
SCENE II. A bedchamber in the Lord's house. Enter aloft Sly, with Attendants ; some with apparel, others with basin and ever and other appurtenances ; and Lord. Sly. For God's sake, a pot of small ale. First Serv. Will't please your lordship drink a cup of sack ? Sec. Serv. Will’t please your honour taste of these con
serves ? Third Sero. What raiment will your honour wear to-day!
Sly. I am Christophero Sly; call not me “honour” nor “lordslip :" I ne'er drank sack in my life; and if you give me any conserves, give me conserves of beef : ne'er ask ine what raiment l'll wear; for I have no more doublets than backs, no more stockings than legs, nor no more shoes than feet; nay, sometime more feet than shoes, or such shoes as my toes look through the overleather.
Lord. Heaven cease this idle humour in your honour ! O, that a mighty man of such descent, Of such possessions and so high esteem, Should be infused with so foul a spirit !
Sly. What, would you make me mad? Am not I Christopher Sly, old Sly's son of Burtonheath, by birth a pedlar, by education a card-maker, by transmutation a bear-herd, and now by present profession a tinker? Ask Marian Hacket, the fat ale wife of Wincot, if she know me not: if she say I am not fourteen pence on the score for sheer ale, score me up for the lyingest knave in Christendom, What ! I am not bestraught : here's
Third Serv. O, this it is that makes your lady mourn !
nighingales do sing : Or wilt thou sleep? we'll have thee to a couch Softer and sweeter than the lustful bed
40 On purpose trimm'd up for Semiramis. Say thou wilt walk ; we will bestrew the ground: Or wilt thou ride? thy horses shall be trapp'd, Their harness studded all with gold and pearl. Dost thou love hawking? thou hast hawks will soar Above the morning lark : or wilt tliou hunt? Tlıy hounds shall make the welkin answer them And fetch shrill echoes from the hollow earth. First Sero. Say thou wilt course ; thy grey-hounds are as
swift As breathed stags, ay, fleeter than the roe.