Document: All > Shakespeare > Comedies > Merry Wives of Windsor > Act III, scene IV
[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 PAGE: 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 PAGE: 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 PAGE: 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
SHALLOW: Be not dismayed.
SLENDER: No, she shall not dismay me: I care not for that,
but that I am afeard.
MISTRESS QUICKLY: Hark ye; Master Slender would speak a word with you.
ANNE PAGE: I come to him.
This is my father's choice.
O, what a world of vile ill-favor'd faults
Looks handsome in three hundred pounds a-year!
MISTRESS 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
SHALLOW: He will maintain you like a gentlewoman.
SLENDER: Ay, that I will, come cut and long-tail, under the
degree of a squire.
SHALLOW: He will make you a hundred and fifty pounds jointure.
ANNE PAGE: 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 PAGE: Now, Master Slender,--
SLENDER: Now, good Mistress Anne,--
ANNE PAGE: 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 PAGE: 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 disposed of.
FENTON: Nay, Master Page, be not impatient.
MISTRESS 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]
MISTRESS 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 cheques, rebukes and manners,
I must advance the colours of my love
And not retire: let me have your good will.
ANNE PAGE: Good mother, do not marry me to yond fool.
MISTRESS PAGE: I mean it not; I seek you a better husband.
MISTRESS QUICKLY: That's my master, master doctor.
ANNE PAGE: Alas, I had rather be set quick i' the earth
And bowl'd to death with turnips!
MISTRESS 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 MISTRESS PAGE and ANNE PAGE]
MISTRESS 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.
MISTRESS QUICKLY: Now heaven send thee good fortune!
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!
THE MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR