Enter Fenton and Anne Page
I see I cannot get thy father's love;
Therefore no more turn me to him, sweet Nan.
Alas, how then?
Why, thou must be thyself.
He doth object I am too great of birth,
And that, my state being galled 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.
Maybe he tells you true.
No, heaven so speed me in my time to come!
Albeit, I will confess, thy father's wealth
Was the first motive that I wooed thee, Anne;
Yet, wooing thee, I found thee of more value
Than stamps in gold or sums in sealèd bags.
stamp (n.) 2
coin, impression [of the monarch's head] made on a coin
And 'tis the very riches of thyself
That now I aim at.
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 talk aside
Enter Shallow, Slender, and Mistress Quickly
Break their talk, Mistress Quickly. My kinsman
shall speak for himself.
I'll make a shaft or a bolt on't. 'Slid, 'tis but
Be not dismayed.
No, she shall not dismay me. I care not for
that, but that I am afeard.
Hark ye, Master Slender
would speak a word with you.
I come to him. (Aside) This is my father's choice.
O, what a world of vile ill-favoured faults
Looks handsome in three hundred pounds a year!
And how does good Master Fenton?
Pray you, a word with you.
They talk aside
She's coming. To her, coz. O boy, thou hadst
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,
Mistress Anne, my cousin loves you.
Ay, that I do, as well as I love any woman in
He will maintain you like a gentlewoman.
Ay, that I will, come cut and long-tail, under
the degree of a squire.
He will make you a hundred and fifty pounds
marriage settlement, part of a husband's estate due to his widow
Good Master Shallow, let him woo for himself.
Marry, I thank you for it; I thank you for that
good comfort. She calls you, coz. I'll leave you.
Now, Master Slender –
Now, good Mistress Anne –
What is your will?
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.
I mean, Master Slender, what would you with me?
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
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 disposed of.
Nay, Master Page, be not impatient.
Good Master Fenton, come not to my child.
She is no match for you.
Sir, will you hear me?
No, good Master Fenton.
Come, Master Shallow, come, son Slender, in.
Knowing my mind, you wrong me, Master Fenton.
Exeunt Page, Shallow, and Slender
Speak to Mistress Page.
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.
Good mother, do not marry me to yond fool.
I mean it not – I seek you a better husband.
That's my master, Master Doctor.
Alas, I had rather be set quick i'th'earth,
And bowled to death with turnips.
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.
Farewell, gentle mistress. Farewell, Nan.
Exeunt Mistress Page and Anne
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.
I thank thee, and I pray thee once tonight
Give my sweet Nan this ring. There's for thy pains.
Now heaven send thee good
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
promised, 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!